Sustainability & Healthy Living Sweeps Chicago with Luke Saunder’s Passion Project, ‘Farmer’s Fridge’
EvG team member Kelly O’Brien met with Farmer’s Fridge creator & owner, Luke Saunders and shared what she learned about the innovative new concept.
As their website indicates, Farmer’s Fridge is a ‘fresh twist on an old concept’ of healthy sustainable salads and snacks….at your finger tips in a kiosk - aka...a vending machine. This kiosk is unlike any you have seen before though! Healthy primarily organic salads and fresh daily made snacks in eco-sustainable packaging is yours with the touch of a screen. The concept is absolutely brilliant and the very first thought to go through my mind was ‘What took you so long’? In Chicago, there is absolutely nothing like it!
This salad is incredibly easy to make and is a delicious example of how great veggies can be without oil or dressing. It's also a great way to feature kale in a dish. Though it is raw and unprocessed, keep in mind that the avocado and seeds add a significant amount of fat, so if you're trying to cut back on that you may want to reduce the amount suggested in this recipe. From an eco standpoint, this meal is wonderful because you can get everything without packaging!
Type the word "vegan" on YouTube or do a web search for vegan recipes and you'll immediately come across The Vegan Zombie, a video series that shows how fun, simple, and flavorful plant-based cooking can be. I've admired this channel since discovering it last year, especially because of the professional camera work and editing that goes into it. You may have caught me mentioning them in one of my Weekly Roundup videos, which is how I got to know them personally. Chris, the man behind the magic, tried to arrange a video collaboration in December but my crazy schedule prevented me from doing my part. Fortunately their home/film set near Syracuse, NY was directly on the way to Massachusetts during my cross country road trip so I stopped in and we made the following video recipe together.
Some time ago I caught wind of some very exciting news: Veggie Grill was going to open in Santa Monica! I was thrilled because it not only meant that one of my favorite vegan restaurants would be closer to my apartment, but all of my friends in the area would be able to experience it. Veggie Grill is always on the top of my list to recommend to people who want to try vegan food, and having another location makes it that much easier to suggest. Therefore, when I was invited to preview the new location last night I jumped at the opportunity, and it was wonderful.
Last week I got a taste of the offerings of Salad Bowl Cafe, a franchise that recently opened their doors in the heart of Beverly Hills. I got the Big Create Your Own salad and was allowed to choose 8 out of the 50+ toppings; I asked for mixed greens, spinach, olives, mushrooms, tomatoes, walnuts, jalepeno peppers, chickpeas, cucumber, and avocado. I opted for the suggested raspberry vinaigrette, but made the mistake of not asking for it on the side - it was way too much and made the entire salad too heavy. There were also too many jalepenos, which made the salad too acidic. Yet, I really enjoyed it and was impressed at the massive portion and value - salads range from $7.95 - $12.95, which is inexpensive for the quantity.
Had a delicious meal at the new Veggie Grill location in West Hollywood with Christy of Viva la Greens: Chickin' Caesar Wrap, All Hail Kale salad, Sweetheart Fries, Bean Me Up Chili, peach iced tea and lemonade, carrot cake, and chocolate pudding.