daily eats 11.16.11 {vegan}

Last week, I followed a paleo diet for a day, and today I’m going Vegan! I was honestly a little nervous about it considering I’ve been loosely following the paleo plan since last week. I thought I would be hungry all the time (carbs make me hungry!). But realized many of my normal meals happen to be vegan.

As always, coffee + coconut creamer to start the morning.

After working furiously for a few hours, I was hungry and ready to eat.

Breakfast: 1/3 cup oats + 2/3 cup almond milk + 1 Tbsp peanut butter. I should have made 1/2 cup oats and another Tbsp of peanut butter but it lasted me through some errands which included finding a stamp pad to send out our wedding thank-you’s (harder than you might think), the bank, and once again, at AT&T. (Don’t ask)

Back at home I decided to head out for a quick run before eating lunch. I was going to wait until after, but realized that it would decrease my chances of actually doing it, so I just went! 2.5 mile run, 1.5 mile walk (50 minutes) in the sunshine. :) 

Lunch was totally random. I had some Gardein Crispy Strips in the freezer because I still hadn’t tried them (I don’t eat fake meat that often) but I loved these!! They are definitely a vegan junk-food and have quite a few ingredients, but they were super crispy and a really fun lunch. I had them with a side of arugula + eggplant + punjab eggplant. (Oh and of course sriracha)

The unpacking project of the day was to start the desk area (thanks Taster!)… a few more things to do and my work space will be complete!

The only time today that I really didn’t want to be a vegan was during cocktail hour, mainy because we have this amazing raw gouda cheese in the fridge…

But I powered through my craving and had a little plate of crackers + carrots + olives instead of cheese. (Or salami!)

Dinner was a recipe from Rachael Ray – Veggie Curry Bowls (brown rice + spinach + beans) + some sauteed mushrooms on the side. They curry bowls were disappointing – not very flavorful. I smothered it with sriracha and ate it anyway but didn’t save the leftovers.

Now I’m snacking on some dried mango and wishing I had some popcorn…but settling on a bowl of Kashi Go Lean + almond milk.

Nutrients: 70 g protein, 69 g fat, 256 g carbohydrates, 45.4 g fiber, 73 g sugar, 1,992 calories

Thoughts on my Vegan Day: Even though the grams of protein were very close to my paleo day, protein from vegetarian sources just doesn’t satisfy me the same as eggs, meat and fish do. (I wish it did!) The fiber was impressive, but I couldn’t stop snacking after dinner! I incorporate many vegan meals without even thinking twice, but I enjoy my “higher quality” protein sources and of course, cheese. :)

california update

Hey Everyone!

Life is almost back to normal! (Not sure what normal is but…)

We choose a neighborhood (West Hollywood), found a place, and unpacked.

Our internet comes tomorrow. (Waiting for the internet has been SO rough, wow!)

We both have jobs. More to come on what I’m doing soon!

It’s still sunny and warm in California.

And we’ve been eating lots of good food.

So thanks for sticking with me during this crazy/random posts/lack of posts time! That normal life of mine will be back soon. ;)

rainbow chopped salad

In the short three weeks that Crooked Pint Ale House was open and we were still in Minneapolis, I managed to order the Rainbow Chopped Salad three times. It was clearly super tasty and good enough to resist ordering their delicious burgers! That should say a lot for a salad. And for me. ;)

So I had plans to recreate it right away and as we drove through South Dakota and Wyoming, I would glance at that salad on my list – just anxious to get back into the kitchen and eat something full of vegetables.

A few weeks later, and the Taster and I are sitting at our table with this beautiful salad (on chilled plates thank you!) in front of us.

And it was perfect.

This is what I consider the ideal lunch salad – it is pretty easy to throw everything together, almost everything can be prepped ahead of time, it’s got a slew of flavors, textures and colors going on and it is exciting enough to make you happy that lunch time is right around the corner.

The nutrition stats are pretty good too, although it is a tad low on protein for me.  Next time we’ll try it with some grilled chicken to really make it a full meal.

If you’ve been looking for a new salad, or something healthy to bring to Thanksgiving (the Taster thought it would be perfect on turkey day), go make this. You might even choose it over stuffing – I know I would.

Rainbow Chopped Salad

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Serving Size: 2 large servings

464 calories, 30 grams fat, 8 grams protein, 21 grams fiber


  • 1 small shallot, minced
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt & pepper
  • 2 heads of romaine lettuce, thinly sliced
  • 2 cups spinach, thinly sliced
  • 1/3 of small red cabbage, thinly sliced
  • 1 medium apple
  • 2 oz blue cheese
  • 2 oz roasted pecans


  1. Make dressing. Whisk together shallots, mustard, red wine vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.
  2. Toss lettuce, spinach, cabbage and apple with dressing until coated.
  3. Divide salad on two plates and top with blue cheese and pecans.

restaurant: fresheast

I need to start this post by saying that I’m absolutely in love with the food here in LA.

I know, we’ve only been here a month.

I haven’t even spent a week at our new place, and yet, so quickly I’ve fallen in love with hills, the endless streets with amazing restaurants, and sun every day. (Ok, today was actually cloudy, but still 70 degrees.)

Yesterday I had lunch at fresheast with Juliana, who handles their PR, and now I’ve got another great restaurant to add into the rotation. Not as though I really need another one, but this one is in our hood. :)  I’m not sure if I should even admit this, but as I write this post, I’m here again.

Yes, you read that right, for the second time today. We’ve been trying to find a place that has wifi (still no internet at home) and something to drink. And I’m not talking about coffee. So when Juliana mentioned that they have wifi and happy hour and I mentioned that to the Taster – it was a done deal. Along with our wine we had an avocado roll (avocado, sun dried tomatoes, rolled in egg roll paper and pan fried) that we wouldn’t order again. In the Tasters words, “I’m just not sure the flavors work.”

What a food snob, sounds like a Top Chef judge! ;) But back to lunch…

Fresheast is a fast casual, asian fusion restaurant featuring cuisines from China, India, Thailand, Japan and Korea. They are committed to health and sustainability and believe that food can be flavorful and healthy (just like me!) – they also source produce locally, use natural meats and seafood, recycled packaging, utensils and create their amazing food without msg, refined sugars, butter, nuts or artificial sweeteners.

Which is all amazing. But for me, a restaurant has to deliver good food for me to come back. Thankfully, fresheast can deliver on all of their claims. Their food is flavorful, fresh and exciting and I love that you can customize any of the bowls, noodles or sandwiches depending on what meat or protein you want and what it is served on.

I started with the fresheast juice, made from orange, lemon, apple, cucumber, spinach, kale and red beets. The color was a beautiful deep magenta and although I’ve always been hesitant to juice beets, and kale for that matter, it didn’t taste “earthy” at all. :)

Then the food started coming.

First was the spicy garlic noodles. Super flavorful and loaded with vegetables like zucchini, carrots and broccoli, I was a fan, although was feeling a little bad after my paleo day yesterday. Oops. The Taster was an even bigger fan and I scored major brownie points when I brought leftovers for him. These noodles just might be the reason he was so eager to come back…

Next was the 5 spice salmon, the seasoning on this was spot-on and the salmon was crisp, just how I like it. I loved the beautiful presentation and large portions of all of the components – protein, whole grain and vegetable.

My absolute favorite of the day though, was the Mongolian Beef Bowl, served with brown rice. The beef was so flavorful, and served up with lots of veggies and brown rice. I don’t think I could ask for a more ideal plate of food. Juliana was sweet enough to let me take those leftovers home too and I had to use all of my will-power to not devour all of the meat morsels. Quite honestly, my will-power wasn’t that strong.

Thank you fresheast for an amazing meal.

I still can’t believe I live in this city…


8951 Santa Monica Blvd

West Hollywood, CA 90069