I think I have made it abundantly clear that I'm totally in love with the farmer's market right now. It's exploding with colorful, tasty produce, making it a playground for a girl on a Radventure. Check out today's haul:
Kale, lettuce, green beans, corn, yellow zucchini, green pepper, plus a non-market lemon. I also picked up a little tub of blackberries, but those never made it home! Wink. ;)
But what's a Radventure? Those of you who've been reading a while will remember the day back in early June when I coined the term as regards my approach to a new way of eating and taking care of my body. Just to refresh, however, I shall quote the current expert on Radventures: me.
I wrote that precisely two months ago, and since then my brain has all but rewired itself toward a plant-based diet and an elimination of as many chemicals from my daily life as possible. This is very pleasing to me! I'm also in the middle of The Omnivore's Dilemma, and while it's not the lightest reading, it has proved an invaluable lesson in the value of whole foods, where they come from and how they are grown. Grown, not assembled.
In the past two months, I've committed myself to buying organic at worst, organic and local at best. The less distance our food travels from farm to table the better, for both our nutrition and for the environment.
Meanwhile, I have also been systematically eliminating the less-ideal items from my kitchen during what I've called the Great Kitchen Purge. Such items include processed foods (sorry, Vitatops!), cereal, Diet Coke, frozen meals...you get the idea. I've never been a particularly unhealthy eater (I do have a food blog, after all!), but I'm really challenging myself to take care of me the best way I can. The catch is that the aforementioned system involves eliminating such food items by consumption (so as to save money), and while I'm far from feeling ill, I can honestly report more breakouts and a few extra pounds around my middle.
I would never go so far as to promote such a dietary overhaul to anyone reading this; I only want to make changes so that my body is as well as it can be while loving what I'm eating. That last bit is key. You can read my full list of reasons for being jazzed about the idea here. Having always been a major veggie lover, this is mostly just great fun for me--new recipes to try, new recipes to invent, Beam Green meetings to attend, and a few new choice kitchen appliances!
I've finally reached a point in the Great Kitchen Purge where I'm so low on groceries that I'm making trips to the farmer's market just about as often as it comes to Union Square (Monday, Wednesday and Friday). When I saw a bunch of kale nearly as big as me this morning, I figured it was time to try Gena's famous Massaged Kale Salad. If it's such a staple in her diet, it can't be half bad, right?
And of course, it's amazing. Not that I expect anything less from the Gena-face by now. Plus it was an excuse to play with my food. You have not lived until you've squooshed avocado through your fingers, I'm telling you!
I spooned up about half of the salad alongside some leftover salmon and couscous. As often happens with greens, my eyes were far bigger than my stomach, and what looked like a reasonable one-serving quantity in my salad-spinner bowl immediately became an insurmountable meal when placed next to my leftovers. Oh well, double the fun when I get to eat the kale leftovers!
There has been other recent activity in Radventure-land, you know. Plenty of juice, for one thing. Store-bought, even! Below is One Lucky Duck's "Hot Pink" juice (beet, pineapple, pear, ginger).
Once you've bought enough produce to make your own juice at home, suddenly $4-$6 for someone else to do it for you (whenever you want it) doesn't seem like such a high price to pay! The organic produce for the first juice I made with my new Breville amounted to nearly $4, so I'm not going to sweat the convenience factor one little bit if I need me a fresh juice during a long day at work.
Getting rid of all the Clif- and Luna-type bars has also been a key factor in the Great Kitchen Purge, but when VeggieGirl pointed out Wild Bars to me when I ran into her at Whole Foods last week, I decided to give them a try.
They're made of pretty much every trendy superfood there is, raw and organic--you name the benefit and I'm sure a Wild Bar will fulfill it for you. At $4.99 a pop, they're pretty much prohibitively expensive, but damn tasty, I have to say. The Mayan Spice flavor was dense and chocolatey, but a bit spicey as well. I can't quite place the texture--certainly not chewy, but not crunchy, either. Almost like a dehydrated chocolate bar...I'm not sure...VeggieGirl, help me out! At Whole Foods, she identified an organic body wash as having the scent of Chuckles candy, so I'm sure she can place the Wild Bar against an appropriate comparison. Come to think of it, she did mention that the Mountain Mint flavor was just like Girl Scout Thin Mints! I am looking forward to that one, for sure. :D
I think I've gone on long enough for a Monday night, and if you've read all this, props and snaps to you--concisitivityness is not one of my qualities. That's the update, though! This week's project is bringing raw lunches to work every day, so stay tuned for a bit of desk feasting. Tomorrow's lunch incorporates everything you saw in that first picture, so you can bet it'll be a good one! I'm already drooling. Time to end this post so I can clean up the keyboard.