London Trippin'... London, Ontario that is...
And I thought I was done with recap posts... Sorry for the disappearance without notice (once again). Andrew and I took a week-long trip to London to visit the Canadian 'rents and I thought we'd have internet sooner. However, it happened to be down right when we got here until today.
One of the things that other raw foodists have convinced me to do is to be more honest about my diet. No matter what it's about, I hate inconveniencing people, so you can imagine how shy I am to tell people I'm on a raw diet. When we go over to people's places, I usually insist that making a salad is totally fine, or that my hosts don't even have to bother because I can just bring my own food. However, reading about people like Felicia over at the (Teen)age of Raw (a fifteen year old on raw diet, who also has more balls than I do to tell her friends' parents that she's on a raw diet when she goes over) have motivated me not to be ashamed of my choices. I'm on a raw diet because I think it's the right thing to do. So why should I hide it? It shouldn't offend people, it's not like I'm trying to convert them. I'm doing my own thing, so where's the problem really?
First step towards growth: the raw restaurant we wanted to eat at in Guelph was closed, but we were starving so ate at a snazzy place next door called Atmosphere. Because the place wasn't too busy, I decided to try my new luck and be what I see as being "picky" about my food. I was eyeing their bruschetta platter, which had olive tapenade, pine nut hummus, goat cheese and a tomato salsa on slices of bread, so we asked if they could switch the bread for sliced veggies and hold the cheese. They said of course, and even asked what we wanted to replace the cheese with so we asked for more hummus! It was amazing, and very pretty.
Andrew also got their cucumber, tomato, corn, edamame, sesame seed salad, which had a slice of raw cabbage coleslaw on the side. It was spicy, sweet, sour, and each flavor hit your palate in stages. Yum.
I figured, it pays off to be picky... A very demanding girl at the table besides ours during a later restaurant visit in Stratford's York Street Kitchen proved to me that on a picky scale of 1 to 10, I'm apparently on the very low end. Though I forgot my camera, I would definitely recommend going there whether you're an omnivore, vegetarian, or even a raw vegan. They have something for everyone, and I had the best raw mango gazpacho I've ever had. I definitely want to try to recreate it when I get home.
In all honesty, part of my raw food angst was that I didn't want to take over the kitchen of my still-recently new family by bringing over all my "strange" raw food devices (though I did bring over the Vitamix). For that reason amongst others, London wasn't exactly being very fulfilling in the raw organic foodie department. However, after 4 days straight of fruits and pretty boring salads, Andrew took a stand and said I should just make some raw dishes, leave them on the table, and slowly work my magic into his family's diet. It worked like a charm.
I made a giant dish of my 100% raw-ified adapation of Averie's amazing Apple Crumble, and my very own Cauliflower Couscous. This batch of couscous had marinated red peppers, grape tomatoes, parsley, pine nuts, raisins, baby broccoli, and spinach. I was trying to make it as colorful and appealing as possible. I'm proud to say the crumble is gone, and I have one single serving of cauliflower couscous left. There were tons of leftovers of all the cooked food though.
Raw Diet 1 - SAD diet O.
On another high note, Andrew and I checked out the one vegan place in downtown London on the second day we were here. It was a super cute restaurant called Veg Out. We knew we'd love it because almost all their produce is organic and local when possible. They were the only game in town that had raw food options. There was one raw item per menu "section", so we shared all of them. Here were all of the tasty dishes:
The Starter: Collard Rolls (seasonal veggies wrapped in collard greens with a date walnut crumble, and sweet chili sauce)
The Main Course: Beet Ravioli (marinated stuffed beets with a cilantro pesto, seasonal greens and veggies, and a side of raw slaw)
The Drink: Banana Strawberry Smoothie with an extra scoop of Vega
The Dessert: Raw Blueberry Chocolate Tart
After so many salads and straight up fruits, this was really great! Whatever they stuffed the beet ravioli with was savory perfection and the dessert was the perfect way to end a raw foodie depravation week! Given what a good job they do, I certainly hope they switch up their raw food options next time we're in town to try something new!
While I could probably live off of fruits and salad and be very content, I like having my options and this week has definitely had it's yummy share of them! See you tomorrow :)