Roots Juice Bar: Restaurant Discovery

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Roots Juice Bar, 6 third street, Dover NH

Rushing around doing errands one morning, I realized I hadn’t made time for breakfast and I hadn’t even had my first cup of coffee. I had haphazardly planned to stop for a leisurely cup of coffee at the opposite side of town, but I had forgotten my plan after I finished my errands in that area. I was downtown Dover when I was reminded by my complaining stomach how hungry I was, When I saw a restaurant sign of a place I had always thought about stopping at but never seemed to have the time to explore.

It was a restaurant called Roots Juice Bar, a vegan restaurant offering  fresh juices and smoothies, house brewed kombucha, assorted coffees and teas, breakfast, lunch and nibbles. All offerings were vegan. So I decided right then, this would be a good place to take a moment and catch my breath before continuing on with my busy day.

I parked on the street, finding a parking spot only half a block away. When I opened the door and walked inside, I was greeted by a cozy looking and pristinely clean restaurant with a few tables and a nice comfy decor.20170228_125042 The cashier/ordering counter looked inviting and friendly, as was the pleasant looking associate waiting to take my order.The time was 2pm  and I wasn’t sure if I would be able to get breakfast; but she assured me they provide breakfast menu items anytime during the day. The restaurant hours are 8am to 4pm, monday through saturday. The kitchen area and food prep area were in full view, directly behind the cashier counter.

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Roots Juice Bar, 6 third street, Dover NH

I ordered a Breakfast Bowl, which was made with quinoa, strawberry, raspberry, cranberries, almond butter, cashew cream, fresh mint and chia seeds, priced at $8.00 a bowl. I ordered a cup of organic coffee with coconut whip, for $3.00. I could see them preparing my order, and it came out and was served to me within a reasonable amount of time. Everyone was friendly and accommodating.

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Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Berries and Mint

The breakfast bowl was delicious and refreshing, and exactly what I needed on that day. The quinoa was warmed and the berries over the top were cold, and the juxtaposition of the two temperatures was very pleasant. The different textures of quinoa and berries, rounded together with the creamy almond butter and then a pop of flavor as the mint asserted its herbaceous zing, was also very, very pleasant. Very definitely, I found this to be a flavorful surprise.

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Fresh French Pressed Coffee

When my coffee was delivered to me, I was once again, pleasantly surprised. I was expecting a solo cup of coffee, which might have been sitting in a coffee urn for longer than I might imagine, but lo and behold, the server bought out a french press. She had poured me a cup of the fresh, hot coffee and added the coconut whip. Left in the french press, was enough coffee to pour another generous half cup, at least. I was very pleased. The coffee was fresh, hot and delicious.

I was glad I stopped in and broke up my day to finally try a place, I had often seen but hadn’t yet found the time to explore. I will definitely go back and I would wholeheartedly recommend anyone in the area, who is looking for a friendly and healthful place to enjoy a tasty breakfast, lunch or snack, give Roots Juice Bar a try!

Thank you for visiting me today, at Vegan Mami’s good food kitchen. Remember to feed yourself and your loved ones good whole foods that are tasty and attractive. And remember to take the time to treat yourself, and give yourself some rejuvenating time, so you can share more of yourself with those that matter to you the most!

Cha Cha Cha Chia Tea!

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Red Roobis Tea with Chia Seeds

Good morning everyone! This morning I started off the morning experimenting with hot beverages, once again. Even though the weather has been  scorching hot lately, I like to wake up and begin my day with a hot drink, and sometimes coffee just seems a bit too heavy.

Have you seen those drinks in the produce section, that cost three dollars (sometimes more) and they contain chia seeds?  The label says the chia seeds add omega threes and are very good for digestion?  Or have you ever had a bubble tea? Bubble teas are served hot or cold, can be made with teas or fruits and blended with your choice of milk. The really interesting thing with bubble teas is that it has sweetened tapioca balls added to the drink, which at first taste may seem strange if you are not used to it, but if you can appreciate the texture, it’s really a fun drink.

The tea I made this morning was inspired by these two different kinds of beverages. If you enjoy the chia drinks or the bubble tea, I think you would enjoy this too. I started by brewing a simple cup of hot tea. I used Better Off Red, by Now food products, a roobis red tea, which has no caffeine. After letting it steep about 4 minutes, I added just a touch of soy milk creamer which I had purchased at Trader Joe’s grocery store. Then I added approximately 2 tsp. of chia seeds directly to the tea and stirred, untill blended. As the chia seeds absorbed the hot tea, they became as chia seeds do, slightly bigger and viscous (dare I say, slimey?) When the tea had cooled enough to sip, it was pleasant to drink, and nice to have with my unbuttered whole wheat toast and nectarine, as it helped to add an element of interest to an otherwise neutral breakfast. Although, I do have to comment that the nectarine was divine, mother nature at her best!.

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Chia seeds in my Tea !?!

Thank you for visiting Vegan Mami’s Good Food Kitchen!

Have a blessed day, and remember to feed yourself and your loved ones Good Food!

Tumeric Latte- Caffeine Free and full of Tumeric Goodness!

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Tumeric Latte

Good monday morning to everyone, and welcome to Mami’s Good Food Kitchen! Ever hear of the health benefits of tumeric? I think we all have; just google tumeric and you will find a plethora of information on why its good to include in our diets. One can take a supplement, or use turmeric in powder form, or use it fresh. I believe the best way to use tumeric is to use it fresh. You can buy it in its whole form and it can usually be found in a grocery store, in the Asian or Indian produce section, if you have a store in your area that has those kinds of groceries. If fresh tumeric can’t be found, than powdered is the next best option.

My husband is wanting to give up caffeine, and his morning cup of coffee is the hardest thing for him to give up. Choosing caffeine free coffee is the first obvious route to take, but he didn’t like the taste and just wasn’t happy no matter what brand we tried. He had also heard about the health benefits of tumeric and felt he wanted to try it and see if it gave him positive benefits. Sometimes, when trying to make a drastic change in the diet, such as cutting out something that’s not benefiting you (such as caffeine) the easiest and best way is to totally avoid the item you are trying to eliminate and replace it with something else. I had heard of tumeric milk, a drink made by Indian mothers to give to their loved ones who maybe had a cold or were feeling under the weather, and thought I would research to see if it made sense to make something like that to substitute for my husband’s morning coffee.

After looking at the many recipes I found, I came up with a latte drink, served warm, that just might do the trick. It’s a Tumeric Latte – and this is how I made it:

  • 1  1/2 cups plant based milk (so far I used almond and soy- both came out great)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 thumbsized piece of tumeric, skin scraped off and minced
  • 1/4 ” slice of ginger, skin scraped off and minced
  • 1 tsp ground cardamon, 1 /4 tsp powdered nutmeg, sprinkle of cinnamon

In a saucepan, I added the water and the plant based milk. Turned the heat on to medium. while that was heating up I added in the minced tumeric  and  ginger , and the powdered nutmeg and cardamon. when the mixture just comes to a boil, I turned the heat off and with my stick blender, blend the milk mixture for a few minutes, until the mixture is frothy and well combined. You will still get small pieces of pulp in the drink, which can be strained out before being poured in a cup, but I think you will benefit more from the entire tumeric and ginger, but its a personal preference.

with a ladle, place Latte in a cup and sprinkle with powdered cinnamon.  And then, Enjoy!

This recipe makes two cups latte, and can easily be saved and reheated if you serve only one cup.

My husband did enjoy the latte, and is looking forward to having it again. It made it easier for him to give up that morning cup of joe, maybe because he was distracted by the new tastes in a different, but still warm drink? I don’t know. As for the benefits, well, we will have to wait and see…

But for now, he is happy, and that’s what Mami’s Good Food Kitchen is all about!

Thank you for visiting, and may you have a day that is full of blessings and love.

Supper Tonight at Mami’s

Welcome to Mami’s Good Food Kitchen! Pull up a chair, bring along  your adventurous taste buds and try a dish with a flavor profile that pops you out of your same old, same old meal prep and transports you to a place you may not have expected in your own kitchen.

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Based on Koshari

This recipe is based loosely on a Egyptian recipe called Koshari. I came across it as I was checking out Mommy Tang’s YouTube channel, where she does mukbangs and vegan recipes. She had, as her guest, a young lady named Marion, who shared with everyone her version of Koshari, as taught to her by her father, I believe.

The recipe caught my attention right away, as the spices were different than other spices and flavors I had used, and also seemed perfect to serve as a vegan meal because it looks nourishing and filling and oddly familiar. Even though there seemed to be a lot of prep, it looked as though it would go together easily, once all the components were assembled.  It looked easy to make into a whole foods meal and looked forgiving enough to stand up to omissions or changes one might wish to make. For example, I used a mix of three lentils, whole wheat pasta and brown rice. Came out very delicious!

So the main idea is to use pasta, rice, and lentils. Which are all cooked separately and then served in a dish with a tomato sauce on top to be mixed in before eating, as I’ve pictured above. Although, as I researched on-line for recipes, I noted some directions instructed  to cook the lentils and rice together. I am always concerned  if my rice and lentils will be done at the same time, so I prefer to cook them separately just to be sure.

I cooked the rice and lentils separately, but used the same spices for both. and I used a dry roasting method – or dry frying- toasting the spices in the dry pan before adding the rice or lentils and the cooking water. I used garlic, ground coriander, ground cumin, ground cardamon, salt and pepper.In the rice I also put a stick of cinnamon, which would come out after the rice was cooked. For the rice, I used 1 cup rice to 2 cups water and for cooking the lentils I used the same measurement. The rice cooked for 35 minutes at low, and covered, after coming to a boil. The lentils I cooked uncovered and they took about 25 minutes to cook, but I kept checking the lentils to make sure they were not overcooking. At the same time, I cooked the pasta. I used whole wheat pasta shaped as  corkscrews, and followed the package directions. When all three were done, I lined them up on hot plate trivets on my counter in covered pots. Oh Yes, the lentils and the pasta were drained of  their cooking water so they wouldn’t get soggy, as they waited for me to pull  all the components  together.

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Plated and ready for dinner! just add a salad!

As I was cooking the rice, pasta and lentils, I also made the tomato sauce to top the dish. It too, was simple and went together really fast.

I used one 12 0z can of crushed tomatoes and put it in a saucepan. to that I added 1/2 can of water, 3 crushed garlic cloves, salt and pepper and one tbsp of vinegar. Brought to a boil, covered and let simmer for at least 25 minutes, while everything else was cooking.

To serve the dish, layer all ingredients on a plate beginning with the whole wheat pasta, then the aromatic rice, and finally a layer of lentils. Top  with tomato sauce,using however much you like. Finally serve the dish with a side of salad to complete the meal.  I chose a green salad with romaine lettuce, tomato, red onion and cucumber. Very simple, but a good and pleasing side dish.

Even though there were a lot of steps to pulling this meal together, it was very tasty and simple. Filled me up fast- one serving was quite enough and it kept me feeling full for quite a while.

Thank you for visiting Mami’s  Good Food Kitchen and may all your meals be nourishing and delicious and full of love!20160705_204205

Sunday Breakfast with Mami

Happy Sunday morning to everyone! Hopefully you can ease into the day and share time with loved ones and on projects or adventures you find fulfilling and joyful. If you do not have the day to yourself (if you have to work), I still wish you a happy Sunday, and I thank you for providing a valuable service on this day, and hope you find fulfilment and joy in your day as well.

Today, at Mami’s household, we are having a slow start; sipping on coffee and waking up slowly. The weather of the day is lending an even slower-motion feeling. Not sunny, a little chilly, and somehow a  quiet theme is playing itself out .

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It’s What for Breakfast!

So, here’s breakfast because not quite feeling like oatmeal or other cereals, not quite in the mood for toast or fruits, and definitely not in the mood for pancakes. But definitely hungry. So I made tofu scramble with the usual scramble veggies, which are mushrooms, onions, red peppers, and seasoned this mixture with tumeric, Berbere Seasoning from Frontier Natural Products.

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Berbere Seasoning

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After the tofu scramble was cooked and seasoned,  I arranged the scramble and polenta in a bowl and decorated with leftover elements from last night’s supper of veggie tacos. A spoon ful of blackbeans, few chunks of chopped tomato, approximately 1/8th of an avacado, and then sprinkled the food in the bowl with chopped cilantro, scallions and nutritional yeast…oh yes, and my favorite,  non-calorie condiment, lime juice. Very good, very filling and looks pretty nutritious!

And now, onto the rest of the day!

Thank you for sharing your time with me.

Take good care of yourself and your loved ones and remember to cook and serve good food!

 

 

A Totally Cheezy Experiment

I’ve been researching my cookbooks,various recipe websites on line, and watching endless You-Tube presenters, trying to find and comparing recipes for a fairly low fat, easy and delicious, cheese- type sauce.  And all recipes I found were pretty similar and also appeared as if they all used a similar technique. It really blew my mind at how easy a vegan cheese sauce could be. All I could wonder was, could it really be that good? And if it was good, perhaps it would be nothing like a cheese sauce, but more like a white sauce. This idea seemed to logically make more sense to me. But where was the flour and  butter to make a roux, or the cornstarch slurry or arrowroot slurry? Could it really be that easy and also taste good?

Well. I was surprised.

To start with,I soaked 1/2 cup raw cashews in a container with plenty of water to cover. I let the cashews soak for one hour while I was preparing everything else.

In a medium saucepan, I put 3 cups water, 1 small to medium potato, peeled and chopped, 1/2 onion, peeled and chopped, 1 small carrot, peeled and chopped, 1/4 red bell pepper, chopped, 4 cloves garlic, salt and pepper. I let this cook until all veggies were soft, then set aside to cool a bit before blending in a blender.

After an hour, I poured the pan of veggies and all its water into my blender. I then drained the cashews and put them in the blender with the veggies. Also to this mixture I added a pinch of cayenne pepper, a pinch more of salt, and 1/3 cup of nutritional yeast, and then let the mixture whir away in the blender. At first I thought, this is strange, how can this be? But I stayed with it and begun to see a change in the texture of the sauce. I stopped the blender and tentatively lifted the lid to check out the consistency of the contents. I’ll be darned if it didn’t look like a cheese sauce. Then I tasted it. Gingerly, at first, but wait a minute… Wow! That was good! Texture was silky and amazing and the taste was very delicious. And it would pass as a cheese sauce!

I immediately steamed a head of purple cauliflower which I had in my refrigerator waiting for me to get inspired as to how I was going to serve it. I presented the cauliflower in a large bowl then poured the cheese sauce over the entire head, it was beautiful. And it tasted even better!

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Purple Cauliflower with Vegan Cheeze Sauce

But wait, I thought, I can pretty it up with a sprinkling of a few seasoned bread crumbs:

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Picture Ready!

And then I thought, Why not add taco sauce, hot sauce and more nutritional yeast? I gave a sample to my husband and he was very impressed. I  told him it was queso sauce and gave him tortilla chips with it. He said it was very good, and ate the entire serving I gave him. He also liked the cauliflower with cheese sauce and was surprised when I told him how I had made the sauce, and how easy it was to vary the sauce, to get a different flavor spin.

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And for my last experiment using the cheese sauce, I thought I would put it with a lasagna. The stuffing of the lasagna was made with a tofu spinach blend, which consisted of tofu and spinach, of course, and bread crumbs,nutritional yeast, italian seasoning and smashed garlic cloves sauteed with chopped onions and chopped red peppers, and then seasoned with salt and pepper.

I layered the cooked lasagna noodles with the tofu spinach mixture, the cheese sauce, noodle, tofu spinach mixture, red sauce and continuing on until all ingredients were used. I think I had four layers of noodles. I baked the dish for one hour and then let it sit for half an hour. And, another surprise! It was very hearty, and very good. Not to be confused for a luscious Italian lasagna laden with ricotta and parm and all the other cheesy tastes, but it was a good meal. Filling and warmly comforting, with a robust flavor. Yes. It was a very good lasagna. But just not a great lasagna. But then again, I never was a fantastic lasagna cook. I will have to keep at it to see if I can come up with one that is better.

Next time I do a cheese sauce, I will try it without the cashews and see how it does.Even though I only used half a cup of cashews in the entire batch- and the batch made about four and a half cups- I would like to make a cheese sauce with no fat added. I have seen recipes that do not use nuts, everything else was pretty much the same, so maybe that will also be possible, and hopefully I will be just as surprised.

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My Lasagna( non-Italian)

So, all in all, I was pleased with learning this new technique.It opened up another avenue of learing how to make sauces to serve with meals when you need that extra something for flavor, but you just don’t want to add alot of calories or fat in the form of dairy products and processed prepackaged sauces.

Thank you for reading my post, and let me know if you’ve had similar experiences discovering something new!

Till next time, take care of yourself and your family, feed them and yourself, well!

 

Happy Vegan Lunch Find

After work today, I had to drive a couple towns over and run a couple errands, shopping and ordering a much needed heating fuel delivery. I was very hungry, but couldn’t decide where to stop for lunch, because anything I could think of was not quite what I thought I wanted. Probably I was too hungry to think clearly. I should have been better prepared and bought a snack with me.

On my way back through town, I went by a charming soup and sandwich shop and decided to stop in. If my memory served me right, I may be able to find something there which was nutritious and satisfying.

And I was right. I got a vegan sandwich called the Veritable Veggie on the Healthiest Bread Ever. Vegan, delicious, nutritious and satisfying; just exactly what I needed!  The sandwich was packed with lettuce, cucumber, carrots, tomato, beansprouts, red onions and peppers. Also a modest amount of hummus, which was just the perfect amount! And all of this on a healthy whole grain bread, which was advertised as vegan.

It made me happy to feel good about eating lunch outside of home, without a big fuss about my food choices. Hopefully many more such places will open up, but sometimes I wonder if enough people will patronize these healthier places to make it profitable for the owners. Oh well, one meal at a time…2015-12-07 15.15.44