M.A.K.E. Santa Monica

RawLasagna

A little while ago, my boyfriend and I were at Santa Monica Place. As we were walking around, we passed M.A.K.E., Matthew Kenney’s raw (or “living foods”), plant-based restaurant. We had been meaning to try it sometime, so my boyfriend surprised me and said, “let’s go.” I was excited. I had heard such great things about the menu, and couldn’t wait to try the food for myself.

I ordered the raw lasagna (pictured above) and it was absolutely delicious. The “cheese” is made out of macadamia nuts and the lasagna is piled high with raw zucchini, tomatoes, and a yummy pesto made out of pistachios and basil. The lasagna is definitely the best thing we had (I didn’t take a picture of my boyfriend’s meal, and even though it was tasty, I enjoyed the lasagna more).

We also ordered a couple of drinks; I tried the malted chai smoothie and loved it! I would definitely get it again – the flavors work amazingly well together and it’s rich and creamy – so good! My boyfriend, Tim, ordered the heartbeat cocktail, because he loves blood orange. It was good, but I’m not much of a drinker, so I’ll probably try a new smoothie next time, or order my beloved malted chai.

All in all, it was a great experience with fresh, delicious food. The server was helpful and I would say that M.A.K.E. is worth trying at least once, if not more. I’ve since noticed that they have a happy hour menu, which is available Monday – Thursday, from 4 to 6PM. You can order reasonably priced drinks, snacks, and dessert during happy hour. Additionally, the restaurant is right next to Matthew Kenney Culinary, so if you’re feeling really fancy, you can take classes and learn how to make these delicious dishes for yourself! The fact that this restaurant is in Santa Monica is another plus, because it’s in Santa Place Place; you can go shopping, get something to eat, and then head to the beach. I can’t wait to go back and maybe I’ll see you there!

Need Electrolytes? Eat Celery!

VegetablePlate

Many people, especially athletes, reach for Gatorade or a similar sports drink to replace electrolytes in their bodies. But did you know that since celery is so rich in vitamins and minerals, you can eat celery or add it to a smoothie or even juice it instead and it will work just as well as these not-so-good-for-you drinks? Celery is an amazing source of vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, E, and K. Since celery also has a healthy amount of vital minerals such as magnesium, potassium, folate, manganese, zinc, calcium, phosphorus, and sodium, it’s a great choice for adding to salads, smoothies, juices, and more. Celery also has many amino acids, including  all 9 essential amino acids and it has been known to help lower blood pressure. Carrots were the go-to vegetable to be used as the base for juices, but since celery is so detoxifying and has been known to have a calming effect on our nervous system, celery is being more and more. (Also, when carrots are juiced, they have a high glycemic index, which is not ideal for many people.) With all of these vitamins and minerals, it’s no wonder why more people are making sure to eat this delicious, crunchy, vegetable – and you should, too!

CookedCelery

Other Ways to Enjoy Celery
In addition to adding celery to salads, smoothies, and juices, you can also try making this childhood favorite: celery filled with peanut butter! You can add any nut butter you want (even a homemade one if you want to get extra fancy :)) and enjoy! I also like to chop up vegetables and dip them in hummus, so maybe you can try that as well. The great thing about celery is that you can do so many things with it.

I always encourage my clients to try new things: eat healthy foods they’ve never had before, make a new recipe, join a fun exercise class, take a dance break in the middle of the day, and much more; perhaps adding celery to your diet can be a new thing for you to try. If you can, purchase organic celery, because this is one of the items that’s on the dirty dozen list.

Toss those sports drinks and reach for celery instead!