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THE GADARENE SWINE! Best Vegan In town!

In clean food, Dinner dates, Fridays, Restaurants, spotlight, Uncategorized, vegan, Vegetarian On June 5, 2015 1 Comment

Fresh Friday here at From Fries To Fit!

Although todays post is dedicated to my vegans…there’s no doubt that ALL vegans, carnivores, and vegetarians alike would go batshit over the beautifully crafted food at The Gadarene Swine. The VEGAN sister restaurant to Scratch BarLA, in which chef Phillip Frankland Lee offers a complicated, artistic but perfectly paired array of mostly animal fats & proteins. My kinda thing. FOR SURE. The Gadarene Swine is the OPPOSITE. Ode to the Vegetable! (without skimping on the flavor of course!) Have you ever heard of a meat eating chef opening up a vegan spot? Yeah, me neither. Well, when I caught wind of chef Lee’s “no animal, all vegan” new venture here in Studio City, I thought, “hmmm this could be perfect!”

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Listen, I’m no vegan, and clearly, he ain’t either honey, but as a food lover…foodie…whatever you want to call it, I can appreciate the art and tastes of all cuisines.  The “Valley” has been on the way up in restaurant culture. The fact that I don’t have to shlep back to Downtown or Hollywood to have a delicious and interesting meal, makes me fuckin’ jump for joy! So, when my brother’s GF, Sarah, a veggie aficionado, came into town from Vancouver, I knew this was going to rock her world.

Sarah, Mom, & I walk in, and are immediately drawn to the beautiful, rustic garden patio. Wood, plants, and succulents everywhere. A mini oasis if you will. Let me make something clear here…this isn’t your typical “Veggie Grill” experience. This is fine dining babes. With that said… expect fine dining prices.

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As we cozied up with our Pinot’s, we selected various dishes from the A La Carte menu. Other menu options include: 3 different chefs choice tasting menus, with option of wine pairing. So fancy for the “valley”right?!. Haha. Get into it people. It’s an experience, ok?! The staff was very nice. Each dish explained, and service was above par.

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First up…Olive Stuffed Olives…. Holy, BEST THING I EVER, SO CAREFULLY PUT in my MOUTH!!!!  Soft on the inside, crispy on the outside without being greasy. Made with a touch of honey.

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Each presentation better than the next. Homemade, lightly toasted sourdough alongside crushed tomato oil with balsamic glaze. This was so delicious! So full of flavor. I mean…it’s in a nest for god’s sake.

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Ok, here’s where it gets really fabulous. Look at those colors! This, ladies & gents, is a multi-colored blackened cauliflower, over a bed of creamed cauliflower, topped with dehydrated cauliflower chips & chopped pistachios. O.M.GEEEEEEEE! Loaded inside a beautiful clay bowl, the display itself makes you NOT want to share. Chef Lee somehow manages to separate the flavors of the same vegetable through different textures and seasonings. FAVE!

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Ok, mind you…I’m not eating all of this alone. Lol. Between 3 of us, we shared everything. Here is a shot of our next dishes up.

Dirty rice and Hand torn pasta with shaved onions. Both incredibly flavorful! The pasta was done al dente with pureed tomato sauce filled with great texture derived from capers, fresh greens, shaved onion and even, a hint of sweetness from a lil fruit. Perhaps it was pineapple. Not sure, but it definitely held up to, even some of the best pasta I had in Italy recently.The crispy rice was incredible. Brown rice flavored with nori, filled with mushrooms, squash, crispy onions, shaved carrots, avocado… etc. Honestly one of the best vegetarian/vegan meals I have ever had. I know ya’ll, bold statement, but I felt fresh, not heavy. Not one bite of tempeh, tofu..none of that. Everything centered around the “vegetable”.

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In that bigger piece of heavy & beautiful pottery, is roasted mushrooms over burnt mashed sweet potato. Woohoooo!

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Heres a close up. Beautifully dressed with a hint of acidity, the flavors pop in your mouth, & you really hone in on all the smoky flavor of the roast. With a mix of different mushrooms, fresh peas, greens, and a few crunchy nori chips, it all comes together in a big bowl of “Bitch, taste thissss!!!”

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We had a wonderful experience here. The food… fresh, local, organic. Thanks The Gadarene Swine! Also, check out Scratch Bar in LA!

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Just in time for a DELICIOUS CRUSTLESS PROTEIN PUMPKIN PIE!

In At home cooking, clean food, popular recipes, protein, spotlight, thanksgiving, Uncategorized On November 27, 2013 0 Comments

Hey y’all!!!!! Omgggggggg,

IT’S THANKSGIVING MAÑANA!!!!

 

Who’s cooking what? I’m dying to know!? Well, I kinda cheated, I’ve already celebrated Thanksgiving:) yep… Last Sunday, and it was a blast. I know weird and early. It was mom’s Bday on the 22nd and we had family in town, so we decided to have it a week early. Otherwise, it would’ve just been us 3 on the actual day. Wompwomp. I’ll be sharing pics on this weekend;) I of course made my classic and (favorite to most peeps) SUGAR FREE CHEESCAKE. Oh and a shaved Brussels sprout dish that I promise to share next:)
Anyway….even though I’ve already had my thanksgiving, you know it ain’t stopping me from continuing to celebrate it till Saturday, at least:) lol. I’ve still got 3 “FRIENDSGIVING” celebrations to feast on!
Listen, it’s totally unrealistic to think that this time of year, is the best time to maintain or even lose weight. Let’s get real chicks. November & December are months of curves! That’s right…I’ve decided to just enjoy everything I want to enjoy, while still keeping a balance. To be totally honest, I haven’t really worked out to much these last couple weeks. Eeeeek, you know what!? WHATEVER!!!!! speaking of balance and enjoying….. Boy have I got a yummy recipe for y’all!!!!!!
WHO DOESN’T LOVE PUMPKIN PIE!? well, you are weird if you don’t. Seriously. I die for pumpkin pie! Well, really… anything that resembles pie. Lol. This recipe was concocted by my MOST FAVORITE BLOGGER EVER!!! Have you ever checked out www.proteinpow.com??? Those of you who are always asking me how I think of all of these weird substitions, well, here’s your answer! Anna from Protein Pow has been an absolute inspiration in my kitchen.
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Her recipes are not only super easy, they also allow you to eat all of those yummy flavors and textures that we all loveeeeeee, without the guilt. She uses loads of different protein powders and really interesting ingredients to create the ultimate (& usually very low sugar and carbs) desserts and meals. Enserio….(Spanish;) I don’t don’t the effff she does it.

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So…on this episode of From Fries to Fit, in honor of this wonderful Thanksgiving holiday…. I’m am sooooooo happy to announce that I have yet again, stalked her blog, and made another one of her delicious creations!!

THE CRUSTLESS PUMPKIN PIE!!!!

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These are the perfect texture and seriously feel like the real deal!
I used these little silver tartlet ramekin things, but you could also use a regular muffin tin. Optional & helpful tip: add the silicone muffin cases instead of just filling batter right into the pan. They are really great for “not sticking” to the sides.

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This recipe will grant you 6 lovely single serving pies:)

Make these tonight! they are sooooooo easy, I swear! Have them ready, refrigerated, and I promise, NO ONE will even think that they are the healthier alternative! Sneaky!;)

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CRUSTLESS PUMPKIN PIE
 
Ingredients
  • ½ can of pumpkin puree
  • ¾ cup of liquid egg whites
  • ¼ cup of vanilla ( cinnamon swirl )whey protein powder (I used Cellucor’s cinnamon swirl)
  • 1 tsp of toffee flavoring, even vanilla flavoring (optional….great if you have a gnarly sweet tooth 😉
  • 1 tsp of cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
  • TOPPING:
  • *unsweetened almond milk
  • *vanilla whey protein
  • *fat free sour cream or 0% greek yogurt.
  • Mix in until desired thickness.
  • *sprinkle cinnamon and crushed walnuts or pecans for crunch!

Instructions
  1. mix all ingredient with a hand mixer and bake at 330 degrees F. for 30-40 minutes. I found that with my more shallow ramekins, I only needed 30 mins, but in deeper muffin tins, perhaps more time. Also depends on oven.
  2. keep checking for doneness. Try using a toothpick through center.
  3. Let cool once out of the oven.
  4. Prepare your protein frosting, top, and serve,

Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 Calories: 45 Fat: 1 Carbohydrates: 4 Protein: 7

 

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If you LOVEEEEEEE this recipe, HOLLLLLAAAAA!!!! Im completely obsessed! I’ve used so many of her recipes, it’s ridiculous. She’s got an amazing book out right now, that is full of these fab recipes. If you want it…….you won’t be sorry!!!

CLICH HERE!!

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I hope all of you beautiful friends have a happy thanksgiving and enjoy your friends and family! I know I will!

You ARE BLESSED!

 

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BEAUTY BLOGGER EVENT @ ROMAN SALON, AND MY INTRO TO ORGANIC AIRBRUSH SPRAY TANS BY AMY JACOB!

In Beauty, events, giveaway!, new faves, Reviews, spotlight, Uncategorized On July 7, 2013 1 Comment

It’s official! It’s SUMMER!!! With 4th of July behind us now, it doesn’t mean getting bikini body ready is out the window!!!! I am sure that we all have loads of parties and beach outings to get sexy for! 😉 Well, today’s post is very special. Not just because I like to be a brown doggy in the summer, but also, because I want to highlight my best friend. Amy Jacob. She recently became a specialist in organic spray tanning, and it killing it!

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Welcome to ROMAN Salon. Amy and I go way back. We went to hair school together and have been by each others side ever since. We’ve worked together…even lived together, so when Roman Salon announced their beauty blogger event, you best believe I was was expecting an invite! Lol

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This quaint but modern salon is nestled in between Beverly Hills and West Hollywood. On La Cienega blvd to be exact. It’s EFFIN CUTE! I thought the event was a great way for people to get to know the staff, and check out all that they had to offer as a team. I grabbed a glass of sparkling wine, and found myself in awe of their gorgeous back patio space.

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Great magazines…a must. While here…check out their list of awesome press and magazine write ups!

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Fresh flowers…a must x4!

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To the moon and back. Homies.

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That’s right… You’re seeing correctly. Those are outdoor stations! Why not enjoy getting your hair done outside!? Especially great for Brazilian blowouts. No in-salon fumes. Amy is a specialist in that too! She gave me one a while back, and it was THE BOMB!

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Clients, friends, and bloggers alike enjoying some local yummies and having a chat.

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We enjoyed fresh baked mini cupcakes from a local baker…

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Fresh caprese sandwiches and each were sent home with a mason jar full of candied walnuts courtesy of picnic LA🙂 heaarrttssss! Delish.

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This gorgeous patio is to die for! Across the patio, you will find a separate area for airbrush tanning and men’s barbering. Genius. It’s like a small little bohemian compound.
Oh, you know….just sippin’ on some organic watermelon juice & champagne while I get my service on! No bigs…. Lol
The service here…impeccable. Love this place.

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Amy Jacob is a top stylist. She gives amazing haircuts ( clearly Vidal Sassoon trained) and smokes the competition with her Brazilian blowout skills. She just gets it.
To add to her repertoire, she now offers a new service!!! I swear, this bitch is on fire. I can’t keep up. ORGANIC AIRBRUSH TANNING! I am fully taking advantage of this;)
Ok not gonna lie…. I am a confessed sunworshiper, and have been all my life. If you ask Amy, she’ll tell you the same. In our younger years, we obsessed over who had the better “dirty face” tan. I know….gross. I even worked at at tanning salon when I was 16 to pretty much get free tans, cuz trust me, they weren’t payin’ me much. I mean….you get the idea. I love being a brown doggy. Lol
Well, as we get older….maybe notttttttt the best idea, huh? As grown women, we all now have to be uber careful of damaging uv lights, sun spots ( hyper pigmentation) cancer, ugh. All of these are dangerous, and age us like nobodies business. Ew.
Clearly, now with new ridiculous technology and brainiacs…we can now be perfectly tan without all the harm.

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I was weary of spray tans after seeing friends walk out of random tanning salons looking like umpa-lumpas, and would always go ” um, yeah…no thanks.”
They were going into machines, rubbing some lotion on their hands and feet to avoid ” staining” and spinning around inside while this machine sprayed carrot colored pigment un-evenly across your body. Gooooooood lord. Well, we’ve come along way!
Not only do spray tans get applied by a professional now, it is absolutely customized to your body shape, color, pigment, all of it. It’s absolutely amazing. The days of looking like streaky mess are over. I sat down with Amy to get the rundown of this new and organic product, and for y’all to get to know her a bit;)

FF2F: How long have you been at Roman Salon?

Amy: I have been at Roman Salon for three and a half years, and have been working in this industry now for about ten years.

FF2F: What do you specialize in?

Amy: I have been a stylist, specializing in hair cutting for the entirety of my career. My newest beauty venture is custom organic airbrush tanning.

FF2F: Appts only or walk in’s welcome?

Amy: Walk ins are welcomed! But an appointment is recommended if there’s a specific time or day you like.

FF2F: Tell me a bit about these products you use for organic spray tanning? And how do they compare to other products out?

Amy: Because, like almost everyone, I’ve had a bad faux tan before, I did a ton of research before choosing a product to use, and I am absolutely in love with this solution! Most importantly, I wanted the most natural product I could find… this one is organic, paraben free, gluten free, and vegan, so it’s great for those with sensitivities. Every tan is custom blended to compliment each persons unique skin tone and desire tan depth, meaning we can give you anything from the most subtle hint of color, to back-from-vacation bronzed! Airbrush tanning should not be a one-color-fits-all situation, which I had found most of the time. Also, the bronzing agent in the solution is very subtle, and my clients love that they can go about their day, or sneak back to work, without looking crazy brown and having to hide at home until it’s time to shower.

FF2F: How long will my tan last?

Amy: Expect your tan to last at least one week.

FF2F: Will it stain my clothes?

Amy: It won’t stain clothes, but I always advise clients to come in with loose, dark fitting clothing, and flip flops because there is a slight tint to the solution. And if you like to tan with undies one, choose black ones.

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FF2F: Should I exfoliate before my session?

Amy: Yes! A thorough exfoliation from face down to the feet will ensure that your glow lasts as long as possible, and wears off evenly. Come to your session without lotions or oils on your skin, and makeup and deodorant free if possible.

FF2f: What are the advantages to a person “customizing” your tan as opposed to the spray tan machine alternative?

Amy: It’s a night and day difference! I have always found those machines to produce a super orange-y fake color, and they always seem to stain the cuticles and feet/heels. That’s the dead giveaway! The style in which I spray my clients replicates the way in which the sun would tan you: subtly darker in areas like tops of arms, shoulders, back, tummy, legs, and slightly lighter on hands, feet, face, neck… This assures you never look “dipped” in color!

FF2F: What is the cost per session? How often should I come in to keep up that “summer glow”?

Amy: A tanning session is $55. I also offer some partials: $35 for Upper or Lower Body, and $25 for Face/Neck/Chest. If you’d like to maintain a tan, come about every week and a half. I find clients love to come right before a wedding, special event, or vacation. Also, join us for Happy Hour every Thursday evening from 3-7, for $40 full body tans!

Here’s the deets!

Parking: La Cienega offers generous metered street parking, as well as 2 hour street parking in the adjacent West Hollywood neighborhood.

Location & Contact Details: Address: 818 N La Cienega Blvd. West Hollywood, CA 90069
Phone: 310.854.1030
Email: info@románsalonla.com
Facebook: Facebook.com/RomanSalonLA
Twitter: @RomanSalonLA

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Everyone here makes you feel like a star! Overall, super sweet staff, highly educated on all aspects of beauty, and super professional. So proud of my bestie. This place is chic!
Come visit! Xoxox
BFF

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On a side note…….
Win some amazing GRASS FED PROTEIN POWDER! Got a super sweet giveaway happening, and y’all need to be apart of it! Enter HERE!

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ZUMBA Instructor SPOTLIGHT: Sandy Campanella

In Reviews, spotlight, Uncategorized, zumba On January 14, 2013 0 Comments

 

HEY GUYS!!!!!

I am soooo excited to do my first ever INSTRUCTOR SPOTLIGHT!!!!

SANDY CAMPANELLA

As you know, since last August, I have become completely ADDICTED to zumba! It’s changed my life! I have never had soooo much fun working out, I swear. When I walked into the studio for the first time, I gotta admit, I was a bit nervous. Sandy was so sweet, and assured me that it didn’t matter if I knew the steps or not. She said, ” Just make it your own, have fun with it, and the coordination will come” Well, now…I am always in the front of the class, going FULL OUT every time! I never thought that I would feel confident enough to do that, but her energy, and motivation pushes pushes me to work that much harder! I promise, you will feel the same!

Sandy’s passion for dance, music, and encouraging people to get healthy, is contagious.

 

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So, I approached Sandy about doing a write up. About her, her style, and how to get started. I am all about promoting upcoming people, or businesses that I believe will be the best advocates of healthy lifestyles. Trust me, I wouldn’t be doing this if I wasn’t such a BELIEVER and so PASSIONATE about this FIT program. She doesn’t just teach fitness, she LIVES it.

We did a little Q & A that I hope will inspire you to make a change this new year!

ENJOY FIT FRIENDS!

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FF2F:hat lead or inspired you to becoming a Zumba instructor?

SC: What led me to become a Zumba instructor was all the many years I was involved in dance. I grew up dancing Folkloric Dance and Flamenco in my hometown of San Antonio, Texas. I LOVE Latin music; it moves me to no end.  One day I was watching TV (which I rarely do) and was flipping through the channels and ran across “Zumba Fitness.”   I thought, “I want to teach that!”  A month later I was certified.

FF2F: What are the benefits to this type of exercise?

SC: There are many benefits to Zumba.  It’s a full body workout, which means you’re going to burn more calories. I have seen some amazing transformations in students who come three times a week. It’s also a GREAT cardio workout.

FF2F: do people need dance experience to take a class like this?

SC: You definitely don’t need dance experience to take a Zumba class. You need only to be willing to allow yourself to have fun and connect to the music.  Because I repeat a lot of the routines from week to week, my students who come on a regular basis get to know the routines well. The key is to not give up and to be patient with yourself.

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FF2F: how long does it typically take to choreograph for your class?

SC: When I choreograph a new routine, it takes me a couple of hours. I want to find the balance of the fitness and dance element of the routine, which can take me time to find.  I always have my students in mind. I want to challenge them and yet not make the routine to difficult to follow.

Every week I make a new playlist, and that takes me about 20 minutes. I pay close attention to the order of the routines so as to challenge my students and to help them get the best workout.

FF2F: what keeps your business thriving?and why would someone choose this class?

SC: I think what keeps my business thriving is the fun factor.  I really do love what I do, and I have so much fun doing it. It’s also important to me to know my students’ names, and that, I believe, makes the environment a safe one and more personal. I also have some AMAZING students who are so supportive of each other and any new student that comes to class. I’m a lucky gal.

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FF2F: what are the future plans for Sandy Campy Fitness?

SC: As for the future of Sandy Campy Fitness, I hope to add more classes. I think the key to success in fitness is variety, the time you work out, the instructor, the type of workout, etc.  I hope to add a Self Defense/Body Sculpt class and maybe a Yoga/Body Sculpt class and eventually fitness classes for kids.

FF2F: do you offer instructor training?

SC: Right now, I do not offer instructor training.  However, I encourage my instructors to come often to my classes, free of charge, so they can become familiar with how I teach and with the students.

FF2F: what words of advice can you give people struggling to get fit for the new year?

 SC: It’s important to make exercise a part of your daily life. You need to make it a habit, so that, regardless of how you feel on any particular day, not exercising is not an option. Exercise and connecting to my body has gotten me through some challenging times in my life. It’s like hitting the reset button. After a hard workout, I say to any challenge, “BRING IT ON!”

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FF2F: Where can we find sandy campy classes and info?

SC: You can find Sandy Campy Fitness at Independence Dance Company, 11108 Huston Street , North Hollywood, CA 91601. You can find my class schedule atwww.sandycampyfitness.com.

ALERT FRIENDS!!!

Sandy Campy Fitness is offering a GNARLY GROUPON DEAL!

$35 bucks!! Get FIT, come work out with me and meet Sandy!

Check out her reviews on yelp! 5 STARS!

 

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Here a great 15 minute video to get a bit familiarized with Sandy and her style! She’s a little firecracker!

 

Zumba 15 1:5:13 from Sandy Campy Fitness on Vimeo.