Purple Carrot

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For anyone who has read my previous blog post about meal prep you should already know that I came to the conclusion that meal prep is not  for me.
I always see advertising for meal delivery services so, I decided to try one out. Purple Carrot is a local meal delivery service that offers vegan prepped meals. The meals are delivered to your door pre-portioned , with recipe cards , step by step instructions and pictures.

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I went online to sign up. It’s $72.00 per week for three meals that serve 2 people each. For your first time you get a discount. So I ended up paying $52.00
Regardless of the fact that I’m a chef, and vegetarian, I am super picky, and I have food allergies. I decided to skip the first week because I  wasn’t in love  with the menu. My first delivery came mid month. It was delivered in the pretty purple and white box. I opened it up and there was an ice pack to keep everything cold. I took a look at the recipes and put everything in the fridge..and it sat there for a week.I don’t advise leaving pre-portioned food in your fridge for a week but being a chef I’ve smelled plenty of rotten food, and I know when it’s time to dispose of it.
I didn’t want my experiment to go to waste so I forced myself to make the curry mango dish.
I love coconut and curry flavor combinations, but I am not a huge fan or fruit in my savory, weird.
I timed myself it took me under 30 minutes to prepare everything and it tasted pretty good. The only thing i wasn’t crazy about were the  garbanzo bean dumplings. Garbanzo bean flour has a really potent flavor that I’ve never really been a fan of, otherwise everything was great.

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So, two weeks since my delivery, and the other meals are still in the fridge. At this point I really need to check and make sure they are still good. One of the dishes is a tofu banh mi… I have tried over and over again to like tofu, and I just can’t do it. The texture is quite terrible, and it has no flavor, well it takes on the flavor of whatever you put In it, but it it’s natural state it taste like nothing. I really need to make that meal in attempts to conquer tofu.

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Overall, if you are not too picky, and you are trying to make healthy meals quick and easy I would suggest giving them a try.
Things to look out for; when I was originally charged they did not give me the discount so I had to send in an email and ask for help. Customer service was prompt, friendly, and helpful. When I went to cancel my subscription I had to google how to  end subscription. You have to send in an email, and then fill out a form.

Moral of the story meal delivery services are cool, but meal prep doesn’t work for me. I would like to try hello fresh, and blue apron, but I know that I won’t use the service as intended. Maybe  I’ll just try them out for my readers, but not really for me.

Update: an additional two weeks later… the other meals are still in my fridge.

 

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Meal Prep

 

Food-Prep-Crockpot-Chicken-Burrito-BowlsI think meal prep is a part of adulting, especially in this day and age. We are always busy… working 40 hours a week,  going to the gym, pretending we actually like things like hot yoga, walking the dog, sleeping, having a “social life” oh yeah, and eating. After a busy day at work the last thing you want to do it cook… especially when you cook for a living. My thing with meal prep is I have no desire to eat the same thing two times in a row let alone for a whole week.  Thanks, but no thanks.

I have recently made a job change. I went from a two hour round trip  commute to ten minutes . That being said I have a little more… a lot more time on my hands. I plan to spend my additional time working on my business, actively going to the gym, and cooking more meals for myself.

Last Friday I went to the supermarket in my quest for meal prep success. I bought this super cute meal prep notebook from Michales the other day, but it’s still in my purse, untouched. $5.00 well spent if you ask me.   I first hit up the healthy organic vegetarian section. That’s where I get a lot of my main staples. I picked up some coconut oil, quinoa, lentils and some canned beans.

I also picked up a few snacks; Boom, Chick, Pop Cheddar popcorn may be one of my favorites, and its good for you, and it doesn’t even taste healthy or fake. Another favorite snack of mine are hippeas they are chickpea puffs, the BBQ flavor is a must try. I’ve noticed that not all shops sells them, and they are very inconsistent as to when they are on the shelves and when they are not.

I’ve been a vegetarian for almost three years now, and I haven’t craved bacon once. I don’t miss it at all, although the other day I so badly craved  a BLT.  I was on the hunt for veggie bacon, I looked up and down the isles for quite some time, and eventually  found it in the produce  isle.  I was skeptical , but put it in the frying pan, spayed  with coconut oil, sprinkled with a little bit of salt and you couldn’t even tell the difference.

One time on a whim I went to stop and shop I was craving ice cream. I picked up a pint of “SO Delicious “soy ice cream, chocolate peanut butter flavor. It was the best ice cream  EVER. Since then I  have been unable to  find it. That being said, I’m on the hunt; I’m willing to try other flavors too, but I can’t fine any.   I settled for “SO Delicious” Non- dairy cool Whip. It’s made from coconut milk, and it lives up to the name “So Delicious” they are one of my favorite non-dairy brands.

If anyone wants to send me fan mail, you now know my favorites 😉

 

After the “healthy isle” I meandered over to the  produce isle. I love cooking with fresh herbs. My herb garden is currently under construction so store bought will have to do for now. Basil is my most beloved herb, sometimes I spring for the little potted basil plants because they are cheaper, but I always end up killing them. ( I really have high hopes for my garden LOL).

I bought scallions, parsley and cilantro. When I got home I trimmed the ends and put them in water. It will help them stay fresher longer. Just remember to change out the water so they don’t get slimy and gross.

I bought some lettuce, cabbage, salad dressing, carrots, avocado, tomato and that’s about it.

I got a few household items and headed for the cash register.

I used to work as a cashier, and I know it can sometimes be a boring job so, I enjoy making small talk with them. As the cashier started  scanning my items she asked me if I was trying a new vegetarian diet. How observant, I didn’t realize people actually paid attention to what they were scanning.  I told her that I have been a vegetarian for three years and she stated asking me lots of questions. She asked me what made me choose that lifestyle, she also  asked what I used as my main sources of protein, and does it help you lose weight. I told her just because you don’t eat meat doesn’t mean you are going to lose weight, you can just eat mac and cheese every day and be a vegetarian. It all depends on how you choose to fuel your body. I advised her that if it is something she is interested in she needs to take multivitamins, and she should do her research first.

$100 dollars later and a lesson on vegetarianism and I’m on  my way home. The first meal I made was sweet potato sushi.

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For some of my weekly meals I did lentils with carrots and caramelized onions. I made quinoa salad,  and three bean salad.  I packed them up into my little to go containers and placed them in the fridge.

I brought one meal  to work for lunch on Monday.for the remainder of the week I had late lunches so, I didn’t really eat the dinners I had prepared.  Rules don’t really apply on the weekends that being said I had burritos one night, and a veggie burger the other.

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The moral of this blog post is no matter how diligent I am with food prep, and how excited I am to make all of these tasty meals, and how many of my favorite foods I buy, at the end of the week they will still be in the black containers sitting in my fridge ready for the trash.

But hey I tried. Meal prepping is not for me. I like to make food based on what I want in the moment, and I don’t like re heating food. Call me spoiled.

My next meal prep adventure will the at the end of the month.  I will be trying purple carrot a vegetarian meal delivery service. Stay tuned!

 

Time Flies When You’re Busy

Within the past month I have officially graduated college ( even though I have been out for months), I put out my very first dessert menu ( on my own) , and I have been running around like a crazy person trying to make my dreams come true. One of the many reasons why I have not posted in quite some time, my apologies to my faithful readers.

There have been so many changes going on in the restaurant that I work for but it is important to stay focused and always do my best. This includes stepping up and taking on a little bit more responsibility even when you aren’t asked to. Change isn’t always bad; sometime sit leads to something better, but only time will tell.
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