This past week, I was visiting my parents in Singer Island, Florida. I partly (okay, mainly) went to enjoy some sunshine and partly went because I wanted to visit Christopher’s Kitchen, an organic lifestyle restaurant.
Why did I want to go to this restaurant so much? Well, let me tell you a story. It’s the story of how I first discovered zucchini noodles and then, the spiralizer.
Oh, and it rained 3 out of 5 days while I was down there. Womp, womp.
My mother is a Type 1 diabetic. Actually, she had gestational diabetes, so she became diabetic while pregnant. Perhaps, subconsciously, this is a reason why I eat clean, healthy, whole foods and resist sweets as much as I can (although, I’m not perfect- I’ll admit!)
While trying to regulate her blood sugar levels in 2012, she started seeing a health coach once a week, in Hoboken, NJ. Actually, this coach was Lu’s old roommate! He suggested she try raw veganism to help. While my mother’s diabetes is Type 1 and not “curable,” a vegan diet lowers cholesterol and reduces your consumption of saturated fats, which ultimately helps control blood glucose levels.
She was about to go to Florida for the winter and he suggested a restaurant near their place in Singer Island. The restaurant was Christopher’s Kitchen in Palm Beach Gardens.
So, she went. Not knowing about zucchini noodles or the spiralizer, she ordered the “Dragon Bowl.”
She was instantly obsessed (like we all are once we have zucchini noodles for the first time). She was so excited about the zucchini noodles and she told me about the dish right away. My first reaction? “Yea, yea that sounds cool, mom.” She wanted to recreate the zucchini noodles at home, but didn’t know how to. All she knew was that zucchini noodles were something special.
The story doesn’t stop there.
A few months later when she was back in NJ in 2013, we went to Pure Food and Wine in New York City, a raw organic restaurant. We had an incredible meal (I really suggest that restaurant if you live in NY – you’d never guess the food was raw!) and she was committed to eating more vegan and plant-based, so she bought their cookbook.
That’s when she discovered the spiralizer. One of the recipes in the book was for zucchini noodles and mentioned the spiralizer. Immediately, she ordered the spiralizer on Amazon. Once it came, she tried to recreate that Dragon Bowl at home. Like the first time she had spiralized veggies, she was hooked – they were delicious!
A couple more months went by and despite her insistence that I should try them (even my sister tried them and had the same reaction), I hadn’t given them a chance.
One Sunday night a few weeks later, I was visiting them at the house in NJ and she made me zucchini noodles. I was floored, incredulous, and fascinated. Most importantly, I regretted not trying it sooner! The consistency was unbelievably similar to the real deal. Always looking for new ways to eat healthy, I was totally impressed.
Literally, that night, I took the spiralizer from her and brought it back to my apartment. That Monday (the next evening), I made Lu and I a simple tomato zucchini noodle pasta with artichokes, cannellini beans and shrimp for dinner.
His reaction was exactly the same as my mother’s, mine and my sister’s: absolutely stunned. He loved it!
How I began Inspiralized is another story for another blog post, so stay tuned.
When I was in Florida this past week, I visited Christopher’s Kitchen. Instead of ordering that Dragon Bowl, I tried the Asian Noodles. I also snagged a “Youthful” green juice, freshly pressed in their to-go store, two doors down.
While the noodles weren’t made with a spiralizer (they seemed to have been made with a mandolin), they were still great. The dish was packed with avocado, sesame seeds, fruit and cabbage. Totally healthy, totally delicious.
If you live in the area, I highly suggest you visit Christopher’s Kitchen! If not for a sit-down meal, then go to their carry-out store and grab a green juice or a Dragon Bowl to go!
Hope you enjoyed the story. Now go watch the Superbowl!