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heart thrives

A few months ago, the very generous folks at The Healthy Baking Company offerred to send me some of their Heart Thrive energy bars to sample.

Heart Thrive Bars are vegan energy bars made with wholesome ingredients.  Each package contains 2 bars (1 bar being a serving) which pack about 160 calories each, 6 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein.

From the website: Heart Thrives are delicious, VEGAN and NON-GMO energy bars.  Made with oats, soy and dried fruits, each Heart Thrive supplies 30% daily protein, fiber and calcium.  Heart Thrives are made from imgredients with a low glycemin index that metabolize slowly providing sustained energy for hours.

I ate the majority of these bars as pre and post workout snacks.  They sat well in my stomach during the workouts, and gave me the energy and protein that I needed immediately after the workouts.

They offer 7 different flavors of the bars, and all of them were delicious.  But, below are my favorites!

Chocolate

Come on?!  Did you think that I would have a favorite other than chocolate?!  I think not. 🙂  This was by far my favorite – next to Apple.  It was moist, and had the perfect amount of chocolate chips baked in.  It tasted more like a chocolate chip cookie than an energy bar.

Apple

Definitely my second favorite.  This was extremely moist and had big chunks of apple in it.  I ate the second of the 2 hearts heated up with a scoop of vanilla ice cream…oh yes, I did. 🙂

Lemon Poppyseed

This was great too.  It reminded me of a Lemon Poppyseed muffin, and made my house smell like they were baking in the oven when I heated this up.

The other flavors were great too, however, I felt like the Apricot, Date, Raisin and Cranberry all tasted very similar.  None of them jumped out at me, even though I enjoyed each and every little heart.

I would absolutely buy these again in my 3 favorite flavors.  I am always looking for healthy alternatives to protein bars for my long run days.  Check here to find out where you can purchase these Heart Thrives.  I have seen them at my local health food store!

quick eats

I started out my morning yesterday by oversleeping!  My body/mind is still exhausted from my crazy weekend in NYC, so I am all about letting it rest and recuperate so that I do not get run down.  So, yesterday was another ‘rest’ day in the workout world.

Once I got up, I was psyched to remember that I had juice waiting for me in the fridge from Liquiteria!

Grasshopper: apple, pear, pineapple, wheatgrass & mint.  YUP – this was delicious.  Not too sweet, not too minty, and I could not even taste the wheatgrass.  Why can’t the juices that I make taste this good?!

Along with my juice, I had 2 slices of Millet toast.  One slice with cashew butter and cherry jam, one slice with homemade Maple Cinnamon Almond Butter.  Honestly, this almond butter is the best thing since sliced bread.

Lunch included some leftovers from last night.  I was so happy that the recipe made so many Millet Patties because they are delicious.  And, perfect for leftovers.  They are good hot, cold, on top of a salad, as a burger, however you want to eat them.

I served 2 millet patties over arugula with peppers, cucumber and an pom-orange poppyseed dressing.

This dressing literally took 2-minutes to make: squeeze 1 orange into a small container, add a splash of pomegranate juice, a pinch of salt and pepper, and a shake of poppyseeds.  Shake up!  This will last me for at least 2 days.

Also part of lunch: Wallaby Vanilla Bean yogurt with Kaia Foods Chocolate Granola.

Yum, this might be my favorite flavor yet!  (Although, I got a tip that they have a maple flavor!!  I will be in love once I find it, I just know it!).

My afternoon snack consisted of another New York City goodie – a raw moonpie from One Lucky Duck!  Super delicious.  It was so rich and chocolaty…and huge…but, I couldn’t stop at just half. 🙂  Dessert before dinner, right?!

And, dinner was one of my favorites – Ten Minute Asparagus and Brown Rice made by Kate!

Along with a salad from Lauren which was jam packed with goodies – mushrooms, peppers, carrots, onions, radishes, dried edamame (which were delicious!).

Just as delicious as it always is.

Yum!  Thanks, girls for a super dinner!!

What a long, but great day!

millet patties

After trying the millet patties at Angelica Kitchen last week, I knew that I had to make them at home.  I was thrilled when I was browsing through the Spring section of the Clean Food cookbook and came across these:

Millet Black Bean Patties with Corn – score!

I have seen so many recipes including Millet lately, so I was curious about the health benefits.

(Source)

Millet is a tasty grain that has a mildly sweet, nut-like flavor.  It is nearly 15 percent protein, and is rich in fiber, B-complex vitamins, essential amino acids, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium.  The magnesium in millet can help to reduce the severity of asthma, the frequency of migraines, lower high blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart attack.  Millet is non-glutinous, and is not acid forming, so it is soothing and easy to digest.

I followed the recipe exactly, and the patties came out perfect!  The mixture was delicious, and the patties actually stayed as patties when cooked (unlike my other veggie burger variations I have made!).  It was nice to try a grain that I do not cook with a lot.

I sauteed the onion, corn, black bean and spice mixture until soft and warm.

I could have eaten the mix just like this!  But, I added the cooked millet instead – and cornstarch to make it easier to mold into patties.

This made 15 patties for me, even though the recipe says it will make 10!  I cooked 5 patties as suggested – fried on each side in a little olive oil over medium heat.  They were deeply browned on each side.

I baked the other 10 patties in the oven at 375°F for 20 minutes (10 on each side).  They came out great as well – now as browned, but still a little crunch on the outside with a soft patty on the inside (and healthier without the extra oil!).

Lot’s of leftovers for the week – yum!

I served our Millet Patties with a salad and homemade pita chips.

Salad with arugula, raisins, sweet curry sprouted sunflower seeds, feta cheese and a homemade dressing of olive oil, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Delicious dinner!

And, a mocktail with seltzer, pomegranate juice and lime.  I needed a change from water!

Give these patties a try, they are great!  The recipe makes a lot, which makes it great for a crowd or for plenty of leftovers.  I am planning on freezing about 1/2 of the leftovers to keep for quick lunches and dinners when I am in a pinch.

nyc weekend recap – part II

Saturday and Sunday I hit up a few more great finds after work: Bonobos, Argo Tea and Liquidteria.  (Check out my NYC Weekend Recap – Part I for other great finds!)

Bonobos is a vegetarian restaurant located across the street from Madison Square Park.  They have a fairly simple menu with an upscale salad bar featuring nut pates, bean and/or grain salads and tons of veggies.

From their website: All food is serves in the most healthful delicious and nutritious manner with live enzymes intact as Mother Nature intended.  All vitamins, minerals and other food components are not changed by her.  We do not ass any processed cooked fats, salt or sugar to any of our food.  All fat in our foods has been put there by nature and is needed by our bodies.

Unfortunately, I did not have time to eat at Bonobos, but I did make sure to pick up a bottle of their famous Coconut Chai.

The Coconut Chai is made with a blend of fresh young coconut meat, spicy sweet chai masala and organic raw agave.  It is unbelievably good!  I may need to pick one of these up every time I visit NYC – seriously!

Across the street from Bonobos, is Argo Tea (located in the Flatiron Building).

It is like the Starbucks of Tea!  I had so much fun in there.  I am a huge tea drinker, and am not a big fan of coffee.  If I go to Starbucks, or a coffee shop, I normally get tea lattes or just plain tea, but they never have great tea, or a big selection of teas.  Well, this was such a treat for me!  You can order just a simple tea drink, or one of their specialty beverages which are phenomenal!  On Saturday, I ordered a chai tea latte, and Sunday I tried the earl gray vanilla latte – both were delicious.

You can pick from sweetened or unsweetened, and a variety of milks to use in your drinks.  We also sampled the MojiTea, which I loved.  But, I felt like a hot drink.  The MojiTea is a blend of Armenian Mint Tea, Lime Juice, Cane Sugar and Seltzer.  Ummm…would that be a perfect summer drink or what?!

They do sell their loose leaf teas, so I purchased the mint to create my own MojiTea!

Next up, was Liquidteria.  I have been wanting to go here for so long, and finally made the trek!  If I had known it was so close to my brother’s place, I would have gone a long time ago.  It is located in the East Village, which is adorable!  So many great finds there.

Liquidteria is a juice bar/takeaway cafe.  There menu looked delicious with a few fresh sandwiches, including a signature PB&J and an oatmeal bar.  This time, I was there for the juice that I have heard so much about – next time I will try the food!

They presh their juices fresh right on the spot, or they have some already bottled for easy on the go.  Since I wanted to take a few home with me, I went directly to the to-go case.  I bought 2 since I couldn’t decide!

Grasshopperapple, pear, pineapple, wheatgrass & mint.

All Greens w/ Apple, Lemon & Gingerkale, spinach, romaine, parsley, celery, cucumber, apple, lemon & ginger.

It is a really good thing that I don’t live around places like this, or I would be broke!!  Juice is a great way to get some greens in while on the go, so I do try to look up juice bars when I travel.  NYC just happens to have loads of them.

While we were exploring the city on Sunday, we came across a ‘Green Festival’ in Union Square.

There were a lot of booths set up for compost collections, green cleaning products, gardening supplies for roof/porch gardens, body care, sustainable restaurants and food products, etc.  It was really cool to see everything come together for a huge city like NYC.  They festival was sponsored by Whole Foods, and it was packed despite the rain.  Boston, you really need to get on this!!

 

Stonyfield, Nature’s Path and Organic Valley had a Breakfast Buffet set up featuing Stonyfield milk and yogurt, Organic Valley drinkable yogurt, and Nature’s Path granola, cereal and granola bars.

Since we had just eaten breakfast, we just took some samples to go.  I learned that Organic Valley products come from local dairy farmers!  Check out which farmers are a part of the coop in your area here – there are bio’s and stories on all of the farmers.  One of the farmers was there and was so proud of his products!  I loved knowing who my dairy comes from.  It made me want to purchase more of their products to help out those local farmers.

The blue containers above are reuseable yogurt containers from Stonyfield.  I was psyched to get these because I hate that I waste so much plastic from buying individual yogurts!  Yes, I could just buy bigger containers and put it into a glass jar to-go, but I rarely do that, so this will make me do it – no excuses now!

If you recycle your yogurt containers at your local Whole Foods, they will make the plastic into other items, such as the yogurt containers above and toothbrushes.  Stonyfield teamed up with Preserve® in order to aid in recycling efforts.  I already recycle my containers, but I thought i’d give the shout out!  Look for these bins and dump those yogurt containers in them.

(Source)

Another cool item that I spotted at the festival were these great pocket planters made by Woollypocket!

You can use them on any wall, inside or outside!  They had them planted with flowers, herbs, vegetables and even trees!

 It was so great to just stumble upon this little festival.  I learned so much more about green products and restaurants in the area.

What a great few days in the city!  I hope to be back again soon.

nyc weekend recap – part I

Wow – what a whirlwind of a weekend!  I hope you all liked my posts of spring veggies and spring running gear over the past few days.  Now, on to the eats for the weekend.

It was quite the weekend of food finds for me.  I was in the city Thursday-Sunday, and even though I was in an 8 hour workshop everyday, I was determined to get to the places I wanted to go to.  It’s not everyday that I get to be in NYC, so I need to live it up when I’m there.  There are a crazy amount of healthy/vegan/vegetarian/raw food joints that I want to try out.  I got to quite a few over the past few days!

I didn’t document everything that I ate over the past few days, just the things worth mentioning.  Breakfast each day was normal – oatmeal with banana, flax, peanut butter and granola.  Lunch was PB&J, apple and yogurt.  Snacks were granola bars and/or trailmix.  Nothing unusual, but I needed everything to be portable.  I made sure to pack my own breakfast, lunch and snacks so that I would have more to spend on goodies!

My first stop was at Angelica Kitchen for dinner on Thursday night with my sister-in-law.  Angelica Kitchen is a vegan restaurant that uses only organic products and no preservatives or refined sugars.  Apparently, they only buy their produce from local farmers, and serve everything within 48 hours of harvest.

I was so excited when she said that she wanted to try it out!  The place was packed, but we only had a 30ish minute wait, and it was worth it.  Everything on the menu sounded delicious.  They have a variety of entrees, appetizers and juices, but I ended up going with a special of the day.

Millet patties with corn, onion, sweet potato and spices served with a pumpkin pesto over sauteed beans, roasted cauliflower and green beans.

This was so so so good!  I loved everything about it and basically cleaned my plate.  It tasted so fresh and healthy.

Obviously, I saved room for dessert.

Carob Chocolate Cake with raspberry puree and maple tofu whip.

Doesn’t it look so pretty?  Well, I did not like it!  I guess that I am not a huge fan of carob – or there was something else in here that I didn’t like.  It tasted very dry and the maple tofu whip on top did not taste of maple.  Oh well – our dinners definitely made up for it.  I would go back in a second!

After the workshop on Friday, I took a long walk around the city to stretch out my legs and check out a few places.

The first stop was Cocoa V, a vegan chocolate shopCocoa V is a chocolate boutique and wine cafe, according to their website.

It was adorable inside with a bakery case full of chocolates, and a small room of tables set up to wine and dine.  They have so many chocolates to choose from, and expensive chocolate at that!  There were Truffles, Bon Bons, Bark, Brownies, Cupcakes, Hot Chocolate, etc.  They do offer a few menu items, as well, but let’s be honest – I was here for the chocolate!  And, I took it to go.

I purchased a few things: Chocolate Pretzel Chunks, Chocolate Bark with Coffee Beans and Cacao Nibs and a Chocolate Almond Bar.  I ate a bite of each right away, and they were all delicious!!  Very rich and chocolaty.  I am not sure what they use for chocolate, but it did not taste anything like my Carob Cake from Angelica Kitchen.

Then, I made my way over to Union Square for the Farmer’s Market.  I got there just as booths were starting to close down, but I did get there in time for my favorite pretzel stand to still be open.

Where I purchased some pretzels to-go.  They sell the pretzels individually, in 3’s, 5’s, 10’s, 20’s, etc.  I went with 1/2 salted, 1/2 unsalted.  They are really good!

And, then to my favorite NYC establishment – One Lucky Duck!!

One Lucky Duck is the takeaway section of Pure Food & Wine, a raw vegan restaurant whose menu is entirely plant based and does not use any processed ingredients.  Nothing is heated above approximately 118 degrees in order to preserve vitamins, minerals, and enzymes.  I have not been to the restaurant, but someday I will get there!  One Lucky Duck offers take-out featuring salads, nori rolls, smoothies, juices, desserts and packaged items like granola and crackers.

I got a Pina Colada smoothie which is made up of fresh coconut meat, coconut water and fresh pineapple.  No sugar added!  It was one of the best things I have ever had!!!  Why can’t we have places like this in Boston?  This is why I make visits to new places while in NYC.

I also bought a few things to go…ok, a lot of things to go!  Last time I was here, I absolutely loved everything I purchased, so I needed to try a few others this time.

Rosemary Quackers, Granola, Cinnamon Crispies.

Orange Pecan Chocolate Chip Cookies and a Honey Bunches Bar.

The Honey Bunches Bar contains organic almonds, organic oats, organic buckwheat, organic blueberries, organic nutmeg, organic vanilla extract, organic raw honey, Himalayan crystal salt. It is awesome!  Not too sweet, not too hard – just perfect and delicious.

And, lastly Chocolate Truffle Butter.  Made with raw organic ingredients: cacao powder, agave, cacao butter, vanilla beans and celtic sea salt.

They were handing out samples of this on little spoons last time, and it was unbelievable.  Can you tell that I like this place?  Yes, it is pricey, however, you pay for what you get.  It is located in NYC which does add to the price, but a lot of time and preparations go into preparing raw foods.

I hope you liked Recap – Part I of New York City’s vegan/vegetarian/healthy eating establishments.  I am always searching out new healthy restaurants when I travel to other cities and love to give other people ideas.  There are hundreds of places to visit in NYC and I love to read and hear about other people’s favorites, so hopefully you do to!

This post is getting really long, so Part II to come tomorrow…