This weekend, I finally recovered from being sick. It’s been a week of nothing but kale smoothies and early nights in bed. Today, I told Kevin that I have been dreaming about creating a vegan and vegetarian food guide for Boston. I am sketching my first drafts of the website this afternoon. I have been longing for a website that matches the way I discover food in my own life – from full-blown veggie havens to vegan & vegetarian dishes squeezed into the corner of menus at the best restaurants in Boston.
On Friday night, I rode my bike through the city to meet Kevin for dinner in Chinatown. Biking to work has become my new religion. I am savoring the last months of fall before winter comes and I will be back on the train in the morning. One of our unspoken traditions is trying new restaurants on the weekend. We usually get in grooves where we end up at the same restaurant for weeks on end until we are ready to move on. I have always been in love with the restaurants in Chinatown.
My favorite restaurant is on the 2nd floor at the corner of Washington and Beach Street. I don’t remember the first time I went there, but I can remember the countless times I’ve been there over the last year. Last winter, I was doing a lot of soul searching about where I was at in my life and where I wanted to be go. I would meet up with my mentor at this restaurant on days that it was slow enough at work to take a long lunch.
There is something about this part of the city that makes me feel most alive. Maybe it’s because it’s one of the busiest areas in Boston. Even in the dead of winter there are people milling about Chinatown, tourists, locals and residents all going about there day or looking to settle down with steamed buns and a cup of tea.
The restaurant, which is called My Thai Vegan Cafe, has some of the best vegan fare in the city, like spicy thai curries, warm thai soup and some of the best faux-duck that I’ve been able to find. There are windows that run along two sides of the restaurant, so you get plenty of natural light while you’re eating and beautiful views of downtown Boston. The restaurant also has planters that run alongside the walls and down into the middle of the restaurant. I am always jealous about the size of their cacti and tropical plants. The whole place feels like eating lunch in a greenhouse.
Kevin and I always share food by turning our plates toward one another and fighting over the center pieces – you think we would have settled it by now, but the food is just too good! This Friday, the usual sharing made me think about how little I’ve been sharing things with others these days, how quiet I’ve been up in my apartment and at work.
At yoga this morning, I grabbed a spot beneath one of the skylights so I could enjoy the sun during my practice. At the end of my practice I was feeling restless, so I opened my eyes in shavasana to get a glimpse of the sky. After a sweaty morning practice, water droplets were glued to the skylight. I couldn’t help but think about borders – about that line on our plates at the restaurant or the 6 inch gap between me and the person next to me.
And here, on the skylight, all those borders melted away and all that was leftover was water. This month, I’m trying to find the borders I have built up within my own body – the walls, doors, cement blocks or fears that have been keeping my from others. I am melting them all down in my yoga practice, at dinner with my boyfriend & on my bike ride to work. I am daring myself to wake up excited & with my whole heart ready to be present in every moment.
– Cashew Milk Recipe –
-1 cup raw cashews
-4 cups of water
-2 tbs of agave or honey
-2 tsp of vanilla extract
-pinch of sea salt
In a glass container, place 1 cup of cashews in enough water to cover them. Place the covered cashews in your refrigerator overnight, so they are soft to blend in the morning. Drain the cashews until the liquid is clear. Place the cashews and 2 cups of water in a blender. Puree until smooth.
Add the remaining 2 cups of water, agave or honey, vanilla extract and sea salt. Blend until you receive a desired consistency. If you prefer creamer milk, then you can reduce the water by 1/4 to 1/2 of a cup. You can add the same amount of water if you prefer a lighter cashew milk.