WIAW: Westsville in NYC

Hey ya’ll! It is that awesome time of the week again, What I Ate Wednesday, hosted by the lovely Jenn. This week I have something special. My best friend and I met up with another friend of ours from Texas who also goes to Teacher’s College at Columbia. What a small world? We were in a Jewish youth group, BBYO, as youth, so it was a nice catch up, since the other girl was a few years older than us. We ended up going to this super cute place over in Chelsea called Westville. Now let me get on to the food.

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This place is overflowing with cuteness. Look at the menu. It made me feel like I was at school because it was handwritten on lined paper. I thought it brought a lot of fun to the restaurant and gave it a warm, welcoming environment. This was just one menu too. They had a regular menu underneath it. There was so many food options that it was really hard to decide. This menu was so cute though that I obviously had to get the market sides.

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Here is my beautiful plate of market sides. I feel like a bunny rabbit when I look at this plate. It is full of vegetables and tofu. It is also a really colorful plate, which is super important in having a healthy and balanced diet. It keeps you wanting to eat the healthy food by having it bright and colorful. You need variety in your diet in order to stick with choosing healthy choices.

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For one of my sides I got the Asian Style Bok Choy. It was just your regular bok choy that had been sauteed in some oil and topped with peanuts and spicy sauce. It was delicious. I love the way sauteed bok choy tastes. It gets so tender, which is a nice alternative to having to really crunch and chew on something. The sauce was really nice too. It wasn’t overly spicy, which I needed since I’ve been eating so much bibimbap with spicy red paste. I have cleared my sinuses way too much this week. I feel like a new person. Anways, Bok Choy. It was simple, but sometimes you need that in your life.

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This was the soy glazed tofu. I actually like how they presented this part of the dish. I was expecting to have a ton of small chopped up pieces of tofu, but then I was surprised when I saw two long pieces of pan-seared tofu on the plate. It had a light glaze of the soy, which was good because you do not want that overly salty taste to tofu. It was really crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. This was definitely one of the better cooked tofu dishes I have had at a restaurant (obviously nothing can replace my sesame tofu in Austin, but this was really good). This was my protein on the plate to go along with all the fiber that I was consuming. You always need to balance it out.

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This was definitely the star of the plate. Roasted beets with walnuts. I think I was in heaven. I could have eaten an entire plate of this. I forgot how much I loved beets. They are so soft and tender. When you stick them in your mouth, they just melt on your tongue. The walnuts gave a nice crunch to it and added a salty flavor to the sweetness of the beets. I gobbled these up in an instant. You could have gotten them with goat cheese, but I insisted on the walnuts because of the Vitamin E that they contain and they are a healthy source of fat. I will definitely be ordering this market side when I go back to Westville. I could not stop raving about this when I got home and talked to Carrianne. I was like the beets, OMG, so good. Who says that? I know my childhood self would not have. I’m adult Lindsay now who loves all her vegetables (even though when I was little, I actually had a pretty great palate for vegetables).

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Brussel sprouts? Man ya’ll must think I have gone crazy going after all the weird vegetables for dinner. To be completely honest, I was trying to be super healthy anyways because I am currently on prednisone for my arthritis, so I am intense with not consuming any bad things. For those of you that don’t know, prednisone makes you gain weight because it increases your appetite. Luckily every time that I take prednisone, I have never gained weight, but actually lost weight. As long as I stick to my good habits, I know I’m good. Anyways, FOOOOOD. Brussel sprouts. So delicious. What? Lindsay is liking all these vegetables that are usually disgusting. Ummm what? They are so good. Yes, now I’m having conversations with myself because I’m cool like that. These brussel sprouts came with a honey dijon sauce that was to die for. They were perfectly roasted and the sauce soaked into the leaves. It was great. I was so full after my meal because of all the fiber. Definitely a win win! Also all of that food was only 15$. What a steal!

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Isa and our friend Rachel ended up splitting a plate of sides and a salad. They ordered the pesto mash potatoes, which may have been one of the best things I have ever had. Pesto and mash potatoes. What a genius combination. They were so silky and soft. The pesto was mixed perfectly in the mash. They let me have a bite and I was so thankful. They also ended up getting sesame snow peas, polenta, and squash with quinoa. I think they were sad because they didn’t order the french fries (as was I because when I saw a girl across from us with them I was insanely jealous). They enjoyed the mash potatoes and snow peas, but the other two dishes left a little confusion.

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Pardon me for having a super blurry picture. This is the salad that they ended up splitting. It had arugula, pair, shredded mozarella, and a lemon oil sauce. It looked so good. It was also huge. They were like woah, thank god we are splitting this. I definitely would get a salad too next time to split with someone. That was the best way to go about things. Splitting a salad and market sides, that way you got to taste a whole bunch of choices. I can’t wait to go back here another time. Definitely a really great spot to go on a date. It was cute and cozy inside. Our friend, Rachel, said that the drinks were really good too and that the vegetarian burger was to die for. I will obviously be hitting it up for all of the reasons above. It was a nice night.

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I hope ya’ll have a great Wednesday. Mine is pretty eventful. I am getting all my lab testing done in applied physiology lab. That means I have to perform blood pressure, heart rate, skinfold, medical history, physical assessment, and breathing tests on a subject and get graded on it. So far I have gotten a 100 on my two other tests, so I think I am pretty good to go. I’ll leave you with this little gem of a minion. When Isa and I were walking to Westville, we saw this cute little guy in the window of a cake shop. I wanted to go in so bad, but I just wrote down the name, so I could go back when I’m off prednisone and it is a Saturday! Have an awesome day!

What is your favorite vegetable?
Where is your favorite place to go on a date?

WIAW Passover Edition

Hey ya’ll! It is that glorious time of the week again, What I Ate Wednesday. Even though Passover ended last night when the sun set, I’m going to share with you some of the wonderful passover goodies that I had during my week without chametz. Thanks to Jenn for hosting this fun day where all us bloggers get to upload a bunch of delicious looking pictures to drool over and secretly be jealous of what everyone else is. I know that no one will be jealous of what I ate since Passover sort of sucks. I mean who really wants to eat a piece of cardboard for a week? Me, but only just a little bit because I discovered matzah s’mores.

photo(7)This is the second day of passover. The first day I didn’t go to a seder because I had just gotten back to school from my week long of death and I wasn’t in feeling the greatest to go sit through a five hour meal with some Jews. Trust me, seders can be a lot to handle. So for breakfast I had scrambled eggs with deli chicken and mexican blended cheese. To be honest I’m not into eggs right not, but since I couldn’t have my beloved oatmeal (damn you for being chametz), I had to settle for eggs. They actually went a long nicely with the matzah. I pretended I was eating a Jewish breakfast taco. It worked wonders on my mind in order to get through the grossness of eating eggs.

photoOh look a stack of matzah, delicious….oh wait, that was sarcasm. I’m not sure anyone wants to eat a pile of plain matzah. That night I went to seder at my aunts house. Apparently my dad told everyone that I wasn’t coming because when I showed up people were shocked and excited. Cool. Don’t worry we ate the matzah with delicious toppings and not plain because that is just gross.

photo(6)The egg. Probably my favorite part of the seder besides matzah ball soup. Jews love food, so why not use food to symbolize our struggles in life. The egg in this instance is a symbol to mourn the destruction of the temple in Jerusalem. I don’t really mourn when I eat the egg. Instead I sort of rejoice and then I snatch everyone elses egg to eat too. My family knows to bring me extra eggs during this part of the seder. The green tree looking thing is called karpas (also known as parsley, but you know we Jews like to make things fancy). You dip it in salt water to reflect on the pain that the Jews felt in Israel. The salt is supposed to be the tears. It tasted like a wilty plant, but thankfully we also had celery as an option. Good choice!

photo(1)Look at this trio of…things that look like mushed baby food. No, the thing on the left is actually quite delicious. It is called Charoset and it represents the mortar used by the Jewish slaves to build the pyramids of Egypt (I told you that Jews like to use food for everything). This is a sweet mixture of apples, nuts, and white wine along with a bunch of other things. I love putting this on matzah or just eating it straight out of the bowl. The other stuff is horseradish, but in Hebrew it is called Maror. It represents the bitterness that the Jews experienced during their time as slaves in Egypt. Let me tell you something, if you want to clear your sinuses then this is the stuff for you. I had too much and man I could smell a whole new world after that. You put the maror and charoset together on matzah to make a Hillel sandwich, delicioso.

photo(5)Gefilte fish is not only scary to non-Jews, but to Jews too. When I see those creepy jars filled with the fish lining up the shelves in the kosher section I freak out a bit. I refuse to eat that junk, but when my grandmother’s old neighbor makes it from scratch you best believe that I will be eating it. It is the best I’ve ever had and the only Gefilte fish I will ever eat in my entire life. It will be a sad day when I move away and don’t get to enjoy it during my seder anymore.

photo(4)Everyone’s favorite part of the meal is of course the matzah ball soup. People do mess this up, luckily it is never with my family. The balls are soft and soak up the chicken soup. I could really just go for a million matzah balls and little to no chicken soup. You always have to remind yourself that you are getting a good meal after the soup because otherwise you might just fill up on the soup and not be able to enjoy my family’s fine cooking.

photo(3)The dinner that night was delicious. There were roasted brussel sprouts. Potato kugel. I cannot get enough kugel in my life (I feel like that is a typical Jewish quote or something). I just really love kugel. Ya’ll need to go get on it, but try noodle kugel first (you won’t regret it). Then for the main part of the meal was BEEF. God I love meat. Well good cooked meat. The dinner was fantastic and we had tons of wine to go along with it. Fun fact is that my uncle is a wine dealer, so he gets all these fantastic wines from all over and we get to enjoy them at our family functions. Winning. I forgot to take a picture of dessert because I gobbled it up.

photo(2)The next morning I woke up at my mom’s house with a slight headache (oh you sneaky wine, I see you got me there). I decided to make some passover french toast out of this chocolate chip passover cakebread thing. It was delicious. It fueled me up and I went back to school (boo for the whole going to school thing- I have senioritis really bad right now and it is quite a problem)

I hope ya’ll enjoyed my little passover post! Have an awesome WIAW!

Leaf (A Restaurant Review)

This week I had the pleasure of going to lunch with my grandparents and dad at one of my favorite places in Austin: Leaf. Leaf only serves salad and soup, which I think is great because when you want to be healthy it is a good choice for a lunch break. It is a build your own salad place and they have a menu called the Big 12 with their salad creations on it. I always choose the build your own salad.

The place is pretty small, but the atmosphere is awesome. You get to choose what type of lettuce base you want, you get 6 toppings (you can get more for extra), a dressing (theirs are amazing and really creative), and a type of protein. The staff are very eclectic too, which makes the whole experience better.

For my salad, I choose baby spinach leaves as my base for the salad. Then I had a strawberries, mandarin oranges, edamame, walnuts, red onions, cranberries, and avocado slices in my salad. For the dressing I chose to go with a strawberry balsamic vinaigrette, and for my protein I went with tofu. Usually I’m sketched out by tofu at times when I’m not the one cooking it, but this tofu was actually pretty amazing.

This salad was HUGE. I hate when people complain about others that love salads because they can actually be really filling and delicious when you fill it with tons of goods. I wasn’t overfull after the meal, but I was satisfied which is the perfect thing to be after you eat a meal out. I hate that feeling when you eat too much and you want to puke. I’ve had to learn how to limit myself over the years because it makes me sick when I eat too much. Although I still have this problem when I eat dim sum or Tomo Sushi (not that I’m complaining though because that is amaaaazing).

If you are ever in Austin you should definitely go to Leaf for a light lunch. Also it is on 2nd street, which is a great place to walk around and look at little boutiques. There is even an Urban Outfitters, which is less crowded since it is downtown.

Hope everyone has an amazing Friday!

Another two-fer

Hey ya’ll! It is Thursday. So excited that it is almost the weekend. I am literally exhausted from doing crafts and finally unpacking my apartment – I know, I moved like two weeks ago. I’m just really lazy. I have a doctors appointment today (hopefully I’m not slowly dying), and I have volleyball practice tonight.

Aren’t these girls sooo cute? They are my JCC Maccabi Team Austin volleyball team – it is a Jewish thing. It is sort of like the Olympics for Jewish teens from 13-16. Every year, a city hosts it and hundreds of Jewish teens come in to compete in different sports. This year Houston is hosting, so it will be huge. I’m excited. Especially because when I played I was a gold medalist.

Anyways, I’ve been doing slave labor and hand painting t-shirts for them. The girls gave me the money, told me to get hot pink, and I came up with the design. This is the front, and the back will have their last names and a cute volleyball quote. Everyone is going to be jealous, and I won’t be able to stand up from hunching over to paint them. I’ve only been able to do 5 so far because painting the fire is time consuming. Hopefully I’ll finish soon.

Baked Apple Oats
1/2 c Oats
1 1/2 c water
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 packet truvia
1 melted banana
1 sliced apple
1 tsp chopped walnuts
2 tbsp raisins
1 tsp brown sugar

1. Add oats and water into a microwavable safe container, and heat for 2 min and 55 seconds.
2. In a second container, add the slice apple, sprinkle with a pinch of brown sugar, and cover with plastic.
3. Heat in the microwave for 2 minutes.
4. While apples are cooking, add vanilla, truvia, and brown sugar into oatmeal.
5. Then add melted banana (previously done in microwave for 1 min and 25 seconds).
6. Then add in apple mixture (make sure to slice down to even smaller pieces).
7. Add in raisins and walnuts.

Enjoy. This recipe reminds me of fall because of the sweetness of the apples. I could probably eat more than one apple a day because I love them so much. However, this definitely doesn’t keep the doctor away.

Black Forest Oatmeal Parfait (I know I promised this recipe a while ago)

1/2 c of Oatmeal
1 1/2 c of water
1/4 c of fat free cottage cheese
1/4 tsp vanilla
1 packet of truvia
1 packet of 20 calorie hot cocoa
chocolate chips
1 c of sliced cherries

1. Microwave oatmeal and water in a safe container for about 2 min and 55 seconds.
2. Mix in vanilla, truvia, chocolate, and cherries.
3. Spoon one layer of oatmeal mixture in a cup.
4. Top with a layer of cottage cheese.
5. Then another layer of oatmeal followed by cottage cheese until you run out of oatmeal or get to the top of the cup.
5. Top with a few chocolate chips and some more cherries.

This is definitely an amazing breakfast. I love parfaits – mainly because of TCBY, but this one is pretty good.

These girls are seriously too cute. There was a big storm at the last practice, so they wanted to go out and play in the rain for a little bit. Being the cool coach that I am, I decided sure. They are so funny. I don’t know what I would do without these girls!

Have you ever coached a sport before?
Have you ever participated in a competitive event like this?