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Hip to be Veg

So I’ve decided to partake in Meatless March this year, which means having to steer clear of all my favorite, delicious dead animals for 31 whole days! But on the bright side, it allows me to share with you some of the great veggie burgers that Philadelphia has to offer.

I decided my first stop this month would be HipCityVeg. It’s by no means some snobby, pretentious, hipster vegan place; it has lots of great, healthy foods even for us meat-eaters (Their Arugula Taco Salad is amazing!). I opted for the Ziggy Burger, which is their classic veggie burger topped with smoked Tempeh (kind of like fake bacon) and a special sauce.

It came on a soft, whole grain bun and kind of tasted like a veggie Big Mac. All the vegetables were fresh, crisp and delicious. I also really liked the smoked Tempeh because it gave the burger a little extra spice instead of just being a boring non-meat burger (plus, you could always fantasize that it’s real bacon). The patty itself tastes like a Boca Burger, so at least the flavor profile was familiar territory for me, but it would have been nice to see perhaps a house-made black bean burger, or a corn and rice patty similar to Elevation Burger’s Veggie option. Otherwise, it was pretty great. I would definitely eat one of these again sometime. It satisfied me like a meat burger, but without making me feel sluggish or stuffed afterwards.

FYI – I won’t be doing individual ratings for the veggie burgers, but at the end of the month I’ll do a recap and let you guys know which one was my favorite, so tell your herbivore friends to check us out!

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Vegging out!

So, I’m preparing to go on a monster eating tour of the Pacific Northwest in a few weeks, hitting up Seattle again (which feels like my West Coast “home away from home”) and Portland for the first time (which I am super excited about since everyone touts it as a ‘Foodie Paradise’). As part of that preparation, I’ve decided not to over-indulge in all the delicious foods of Philadelphia so that I can make room for all the delectable goodness that will surely cause me to tip the scales upon my return. So no burgers, no pizza, no pasta, no rice, no junk food, NO BEER (!!) – and other treats in limited quantities, until August 9th!

So far on my “Snack Sabatacle”, I’ve managed to be pretty good. We took a little trip to Elevation Burger and it was soooooo hard not to order something with meat. (Guys, dead animals are delicious; don’t trick yourselves into thinking they’re not.) But I showed tremendous restraint and ordered a veggie burger #2, while my dining partner ordered veggie burger #1 and we split both of them as well as a side of fries. (That was also hard because I hate sharing fries!) 

Veggie Burger #2 is supposed to be the totally vegan, all veggie burger. It has a little bit of  visible corn in it as well as some other veggies. I obviously am not a vegan because I put cheese on it. (Another thing I am trying to limit, but I was worried it would taste like cardboard if I didn’t put cheese on it.) And I was pleasantly surprised! It was totally tasty. I wanted to eat it all but remembered we were splitting them.

As for Veggie Burger #1, it was supposed to have a “fire roasted taste”; maybe if it was fire roasted BLAH! It had absolutely no taste at all, the cheese didn’t help, and I wanted to cry about how bland it was after I finished eating it.

So, survey says: Veggie #2 > Veggie #1. (But obviously in my world, Meat > Veggie, period.)

I also took a raw foods adventure at Jar Bar Philly, ordering a delicious Asian Kale salad. I mean, I guess that’s not really jumping head-first into the raw food movement since salad is already raw, but I dipped my toe in the pool. 

 This + Asian Ginger Dressing = soooo yummy! Kale ❤

I also got a Strawberry Kale Lemonade elixir, which was totally delicious and surprisingly filling. And we split a chocolate mousse pie for dessert, which did not taste like cardboard or like it was some lo-cal diet gross thing. It was super yummy and now I wanna make it forever and ever.

Photo courtesy of http://www.bridgesburgersbeer.com/
I can’t believe it’s vegan!

The trip to Jar Bar was basically just to get an idea of what exactly raw food is since we are planning on doing the 3-Day Catalyst Juice Cleanse right before our trip. (In case all the trying to be good about eating and stepping it up with the exercising isn’t working out well enough.) I’ve never done a cleanse before, but I read up on a friend’s experience with the same cleanse and it seemed not to be soooo bad. I’m still a little bit nervous about it, but another friend is also doing a FIVE day cleanse right now and he seems to be doing alright. I’m sure a lot of it is easy if you have good willpower and self-control. I think maybe if I was eating fast food and other junk stuff all the time already prior to this, it would be difficult to go cold turkey and just drink juice six times a day for three days. 

The part I’m most worried about is not being able to drink coffee! You are restricted to water and decaf tea as the only other beverages other than the juices during the cleanse; reason being that since you are detoxing your body of the gross stuff, you will have more energy and not need coffee.(We’ll see about that…)

The countdown is ON! 

Days until the cleanse begins: 8
Days until Seattle:14
Days until Portland: 18
Days until I bring all my pants back to the tailor to have them let out: 23

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