Thanksgiving plate

Food for the Soul Shared on Thanksgiving

Today’s Daily Prompt is perfect for the month of November. I have always believed that food is nourishment for your soul just as much as it is for your body. The love that is shared and passed on through food is never more apparent than during the holiday season when people gather to cook and share together. Thanksgiving is only 17 days away and I eagerly look forward to joining my mom in the kitchen again to create a wonderful meal for family and friends.

To give you an idea of the delicious dishes that grace our table, here is what our food for the soul from Thanksgiving 2011 looked like.

The First Course

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LOS Veggie Burger

Favorite Places to Lunch in Philly

During the week, I try to bring my lunch to work with me, whether it’s leftovers, a sandwich, or maybe some lettuce wraps. But, sometimes I don’t feel like eating what my kitchen has to offer, and I am left with the decision of deciding where to eat. Many times, my co-workers and I eat lunch together and that is always the first question “So where are we eating?”

Philly has a wide variety of places to choose from, but I generally stay within the same radius between JFK Boulevard and Walnut Streets, and 18th to 16th Streets (with rare trips to the Reading Terminal Market). When I don’t eat at my work’s cafeteria, here are some of my favorite places to eat (not in any order of preference).

Jimmy John’s
44 S. 17th Street
This is where I go when I’m in the mood for a sub. I always get #6 – Vegetarian. What I love most about this sandwich is the avocado cream. No other sandwich place makes avocado cream like JJ’s does. It’s also a great place if you don’t have time to wait for lunch, and I don’t ever remember waiting more than five minutes to get my sandwich. If you have a gluten allergy or are watching your carb intake, you can also make any sammich into an Unwich (a lettuce wrap).

HipCityVeg
127 S. 18th Street
When I’m craving some healthy food that is 100% plant-based, this is where I go. My favorites (so far) are the Ziggy Burger and the Fajita Wrap, as well as a side of sweet potato fries served with a cilantro-black bean dip. The Jerk Cesar Salad is quite tasty as well. But, make no mistake, the food portions are just as hearty and you will never be able to complain of still being hungry after your meal.

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Losing faith in our food system

This post has been sitting in my drafts section for the passed four months or so. I have been meaning to share it for awhile, but was (and slightly still am) very concerned with making it ‘perfect.’ This month, I have decided to take part in NaBloPoMo (or National Blog Posting Month), which involves publishing a post every day of the month, so I decided it was finally time to share this with the world. 

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I love food. I always have and always will.

When I was a kid, one of my favorite places to enjoy food was at Mickey D’s. I loved the Happy Meal box the food came in – I think I preferred nuggets over the hamburger – and of course the best thing was the prize. Somewhere in storage, I still have a box full of the toys I collected. The only ‘toy’ that truly lives is the evergreen tree that we planted next to my grandparents’ two-story house and is now (about 20-ish years later) significantly taller than the house.

McDonalds tree
The one in the middle is my McDonald’s Tree.

Back then, I didn’t give much thought to food, I just enjoyed it. I trusted that what this place served to me wouldn’t harm me in any way. And so did my mom. Other staples from my childhood are peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and Kid Cuisine meals. I always loved the penguin on the box and the way each serving was separated into its own compartment.

But now, my experience with food is slightly different. I still love it, but sometimes I feel as if my enjoyment of it is tainted. This is mostly because I do not trust the majority of our food suppliers. My awareness of food now includes the knowledge of added chemicals, hormones, pink slime, and ‘ingredients’ that are carcinogenic. It’s almost enough to make anyone want to stop eating altogether. Continue reading “Losing faith in our food system”

All Lobster Roll

Let Me See That Lobster Roll

Have you ever eaten something for the first time and immediately wondered how you could have gone through life without ever having eaten it before? That is exactly how I feel about lobster rolls.

I had one for the first time during the week of the U.S. Open, when the cafeteria at my job decided to serve it for lunch. It was delicious. The roll was toasted and the filling looks like it was made with chopped up lobster, mayonnaise, chives, and other seasonings. I was quite disappointed that this was only on the menu for this one day.

Lobster roll
Lobster roll, seasoned chips, and potato salad.

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32 oz beer mug

Dinner with a Movie

This past weekend, we went to see Superman (okay, officially Man of Steel, but I’ll still call it Superman). The movie was awesome, and definitely lived up to my expectations. Although, I do have to say I was a little surprised that Amy Adams was cast as Lois Lane. I was expecting someone with darker features. Anyway, that is not the point of this post.

What made my movie experience even better than usual was that we were able to enjoy dinner and drinks while we were watching the movie! Instead of staying in Philly and going to the usual places for cinematic entertainment, we drove out to Collegeville, PA – one of the many homes of Movie Tavern.

The way it works: you purchase your tickets online for the movie and times you want, then show up at least 45 minutes ahead of the scheduled time so you can get a good seat. There is an in-house restaurant/ bar where you can sit to eat and drink before the movie if you like, and there was also another tiki bar in the lobby.

Grilled chicken quesadillas
The appetizer – grilled chicken quesadillas

For some reason, I thought there would be actual table and chairs that you sit at during the movie, but not quite. The theater is set up like any other movie theater, but the seats are bigger and a lot more cushy and comfortable. There’s a side table attached to one of the arms of the chair that holds your drink and food.  Continue reading “Dinner with a Movie”

turkey soup

Turkey Soup for the Soul

I thought I was going to make it through this winter without getting sick, but unfortunately it wasn’t meant to be. On Thursday, I woke up with a scratchy throat, which – despite my best efforts – developed into a sore throat, headache, and stuffy nose by Saturday.

When I get sick, I’m pretty strict about the foods I won’t eat. While these may not be official recommendations you’ll hear from a doctor (if you choose to go to one), I have found that my recovery time is a lot quicker when I avoid these types of foods: dairy products (because they make you more phlegmy, i.e. help you produce more snot), anything with sugar (sugar feeds the cold), greasy foods, and I limit the amount of fruit I eat.

turkey soup
Nothing more comforting than homemade turkey soup.

This restricted diet doesn’t mean you shouldn’t eat anything though, and I find that soups are the best way to go because they let you pack a lot nutrients into one meal. Not to mention the heat helps soothe sore throats a lot. I combine this dish with regular doses of airborne and a lot of mint tea when I’m sick. Continue reading “Turkey Soup for the Soul”