So I just came back from New York, which was absolutely amazing. I got the chance to hang out with some friends, see pretty sights and eat yummy food.
I will apologize in advance that I did not take a picture of everything I ate, but would describe it as well as I can. I am also very very lucky to have the friends I have, who were very accommodating, and interested in learning about what I ate and how my change in diet has affected me. With transitioning into a plant-based lifestyle, it is always an extra boost to have people who support you.I definitely recommend talking to friends and family about your different choices because they will understand, some quicker than others but they will all come around.
My vegan toolbox did come in handy, and I am working on expanding that series on my blog so stay tuned.
Anyway, on to the food. I think I will try and hit the key things I tried because I definitely ate a lot of food. So I got to New York City on Thursday and the next day, my friends took me to Blossom in Chelsea, one of four of its locations, and we enjoyed a great lunch. I ordered the Moroccan Tagine, which was absolutely amazing. I wish I had remembered to take a picture. Tagine refers to the clay pot the stew is cooked in and the food generally contains a mix of vegetables, sometime chickpeas and a blend of Moroccan spices. My friend Alex and I ordered the same thing with quinoa and tofu. I also ordered a side of kale and butternut squash, which was marinated in a sauce that I would say was a soy sauce, teriyaki mix and it was great. I really do wish I took a picture. If you are in New York, you should definitely checkout one of their locations, but there are definitely plenty more vegan options around.
We took a stroll on the High Line, which I believe was an above ground rail-line that has now been converted to a public space with paths and shops. Because it was very very hot, we took a desert break and I got a blueberry sour cherry popsicle from People’s Pop, which was nice, especially in the heat.
For dinner, although it was nothing spectacular–potatoes and beans, I would like to mention that travelling doesn’t have to be difficult when it comes to preparing your own meals. Alex’s family was very accommodating and allowed me to cook in their kitchen so I managed to stay on track. I brought a couple of staples with me–some dried fruit, and some rolled oats, just in case. I also picked up some cantaloupe, which thank goodness, is not out of season yet in NYC and some great oranges. Those were good for breakfast and snacks.
The next day, which was very exciting, we went out to Smorgasburg in the heat and got to try a number of things. Amongst all the meat and dairy lovers’ stands I found some great vegan options of which I should have documented all of but forgot to. If you follow my Instagram you will see some of the things I had. I started out with a large coconut, for the electrolytes and hydration, of course. This brought back childhood memories of enjoying coconut water everyday because of the abundant coconuts we had on our coconut tree. I still drink coconut water, especially after workouts but it was nice to get one straight from the fruit.
Then I got a glazed vegan donut which was amazing, fluffy and tasty. I generally don’t eat baked vegan treats but I like to treat myself once in a while. I also had a kale salad from The Regal Vegan stand which was delicious. I accompanied it with two rotis from a stand I do not remember, one with butternut squash and the other with potatoes.
I had been craving indian food for a while and was super excited to try something spicy. Obviously I had to end with desert but couldn’t make a decision so I got two sweet things–a spiced mango and a salted caramel pop-up which was made from a mixture of almond, hazelnut, cashew cream with dairy free chocolate chip cookies and a graham cracker base. I was in heaven!!!
Dinner was absolutely amazing! Alex’s mom put together a lovely meal for her dad, and my friends. I had never tried soba noodles and I don’t know what hole I was stuck under. She also had these delicious grilled tofu steaks, which I think were dressed with a sweet and sour sauce, and some coleslaw to go with everything. It was nice to share a meal with everyone and just talk and catch up!
Sunday was good, I had a smoothie, caught up with another friend, and got a nice tour of the north western part of New York City. I got the chance to visit a branch of the Met–the Cloisters, which was great. It may not have been a food adventure but the gardens had plants that were indigenous to some of the areas that the monasteries were found and they were quite interesting. Different types of kale, herbs and other vegetation.
For dinner, I tried a Dosa for the first time and it was great. Its a thin pancake/crepe that can be filled with anything. It had potatoes, spinach and sun-dried tomatoes, which was lovely. Although very spicy, the food was worth the slight burn of the chilli. I should have gotten a photo of that but once again I forgot.
In between meals, I had a good number of peaches and a hybrid plum-apricot which was really sweet. We even stumbled upon a farmer’s market and grabbed some plums before heading to a movie. Besides who needs popcorn when you can have plums.
I am very grateful to have had a great experience and a very accommodating family. I certainly want to make more posts about travelling and still eating well as a vegan, so stay tuned