Tuesday, July 19, 2011

How to find foodspiration when you're in a rut.

I've been incorporating more raw foods into my diet this week after coming across Angela Hardison's gorgeous photos of her own take on a 50% raw food diet. Now, I realize that there are tons of bloggers talking about the benefits of "going raw" right now, so let me share a bit about why I'm trying it. But also not trying it at all, really.

My eating habits: 

I've been "primarily pescetarian" for nearly two years now. I became a vegetarian on accident in 2009. (Weird, huh?) I was living in downtown Orlando at the time, surrounded by vegetarian/vegan friends, with tons of local, animal-friendly restaurants at my fingertips. Basically, I had options everywhere. So, I was eating some yummy tofu coconut curry at Stardust one afternoon while I worked on my homework, when it hit me - I hadn't eaten any meat for nearly a week and a half. Weird. And it hadn't even been hard. Even more weird. I thought that I'd just keep it up and see how long I could go.

The following summer, I was living with my good friend Lindsay in Rockledge, who had been a pescetarian for two years at the time, and getting to witness her gift in the kitchen soon had me excited to join her. I learned how to prepare tons of vegetarian-friendly dishes I'd never had exposure to before. And, I just couldn't say goodbye to the fish... after all, we do live in a coastal Florida city, and there are so many good fish places. So I added fish to my veggie diet, and all was well with my soul. (Well, actually, eating my "monthly allowance" of one Chick-fil-A sandwich and an icy sweet tea is also very good for my soul, hence my identity as a primarily pescetarian.)

I'm not going to go into all the reasons I eat the way that I do, because I really don't think it's important. What matters is that I'm so happy with my diet, and I love eating the foods that I choose to eat. There are few greater things on earth than a table of food, good friends and laughter, or an open bottle of wine and a savory-sweet dessert with long, drawn-out heart-to-hearts that creep late into the night. (The same is true of scrumptious food + date nights with the boy.)

Anyway, on to the raw food. The reason I'm writing this post.

There are times when I find myself in a food rut. These last few months of packing, moving, unpacking, becoming a homeless nomad on my friends' couches, and going from city to city has put a major strain on my cooking and eating rhythm. I was in dire need for fresh foodspiration, and I kept hearing/reading about women "going raw." I've been keen to the raw thing for nearly five years now, and done a fair amount of research on the topic. Personally, I am really wary of consuming an 80% - 100% raw diet for myself. (... which I also won't get into on this blog, because that's a topic in itself. I'm not here to convince anyone to eat a certain way, or to say you should avoid eating foods that help your body feel good. If you're curious, however, email me and we'll chat!) But, needless to say, I was in a food rut and looking for a way to pump my body full of goodness and think creatively about my food again.

After seeing Angela's posts, I knew I'd found it. I was going to go shopping, suck it up and pay the extra cash for a ton of fresh fruits and veggies and go to town. Want to see a select few of the meals I've eaten this week?

This was this morning's breakfast, "styled" (I guess you could say) after one of Angela's breakfasts.

Fiber one, nectarine slices, a handful of fresh blueberries, and a 1/2 cup of almond milk. It was so hearty that I felt full for the next four hours. Dang. 

For lunch, I ate a Quorn soy-free veggie burger on toasted wheat toast. I ate fresh cucumbers and carrots on the side, instead of a pickle spear and fries. I also piled my burger high with romaine leaves and mini tomatoes and topped the meal off with a homemade iced chai with some skim milk. 


I've also enjoyed salads, vegetable stir fry, and veggie-loaded egg dishes this week. I'm in a fresh produce state of mind. Mmm.

Oh, and if you're curious, here are my two favorite food photographers of all time.

Honey & Jam 

Hannah's earnestly and kindness shows through on her blog, and her recipes and photos are matched in their greatness, in my book. I love her love of family, food, and experiencing life. (We're kindred spirits in that way, I think.)


Jen's breakfast photos have made my mouth water for years. When there are days I argue with myself to get out of bed (like this entire past week) I'll head to her breakfast photoset and let my imagination rev up for breakfast time the the next morning. Oh, and she's a veggie too, so all of the "meats" you see in the photos are meat substitutes. Yay!

Phew, that post was much longer than I intended it to be. If you have comments, have at it! If you'd like an email response, be sure to leave your email in there too. (And remember, if you don't have a blog you can still leave a comment as an anonymous visitor. Let me know if you're reading!)

Do you have food blogs you love to read when you're in a rut? What are your favorite things to eat, and why do you like them? Know any good, totally raw food sites or bloggers I need to check out? The earthier the better.



  1. Ugh. I have been in SUCH a food rut! Thanks for this post! I'm excited to see what I can come up with tomorrow :)

  2. great post! i need to go back and read it because I kind of skimmed and I know there's lot of great info in here. but I thought I'd share a place I go when I'm in a food rut. this flickr set: http://www.flickr.com/photos/annatorborg/sets/72157619037334985/with/5915737537/

    (sorry for the long link). She doesn't really post recipes but she posts photos of her vegetarian lunches and dinners, and i always find a new idea or a food I'd forgotten about.

  3. Thanks for that link, Katie! Isn't it funny that it's sometimes as simple as looking at a food, or a food combination, that you haven't seen in awhile to make you think, "Oh I like eating that! I should eat that this week."


  4. I love that Angela inspired you! I know her IRL and she's honestly one of the sweetest people ever. Her food photos constantly inspire me as well!