Beets

Maoz x2

Hello! Dreary afternoon here in DC but its good weather for getting a lot of work done. I ended up going back to Maoz for lunch today and had Emily and Kara from work come with me. This place is pretty lifechanging for lunch if you’re looking for somewhere to get an awesome and reasonable meal! You can read about my first time here which has a lot more pictures and shows the whole salad bar with the steps along the way. I loved my lunch there last time so much that I got pretty much the same thing again – the falafel salad bowl with eggplant and hummus as add ins, and then topped it with tons of the fresh salads from the salad bar.

The salad bowl had:

  • Falafel
  • Hummus
  • Eggplant
  • Greens
  • Carrot Salad
  • Beet Salad
  • Chickpea Salad
  • Veggie Salad
  • Cauliflower + Broccoli
  • Red Cabbage Salad
  • Tabouli Salad

I also got a carrot juice on the side, which was just OK. I liked it, but it was literally just carrots (which is what I ordered) so it was a little blah. Next time I’ll probably get a mix of carrot, orange, and apple instead of just carrot.

This place was just as good as the first time. It is so fresh and so many options, and I love that you can load up your bowl or sandwich with tons and tons of different fresh salads and they don’t weight it afterwards to charge you more. It is definitely a little filling and both times I was planning on saving some for later, but it was just so good I could not stop. I am feeling pretty full now so don’t think an afternoon snack is in my future.

So I have one more thing to share about my trip to Oklahoma City at the beginning of June. On Sunday night, we had a reception at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art. This museum has the largest comprehensive collection of Dale Chihuly Glass anywhere in the world. I am not much of an art person, but this was AWESOME. He basically blows glass into different sculptures and shapes and it’s pretty incredible to look at. Here’s a few photos from inside the gallery.

And then my absolute favorite part, which was a glass ceiling that had tons of different blown glass sculptures on top of it. This was the view from below looking up at the ceiling.

How cool is that!?

Are you into art? What’s your favorite way to enjoy it – a museum, an art class, photography, etc?

Maoz

Today I am so happy that I didn’t have food at home to make lunch because I had an AWESOME meal at a new-to-me place. My friend/former coworker Helene actually emailed me while I was in OKC to tell me about this place she went to, and I knew I had to try it.

Maoz is a vegetarian restaurant that has international locations, and then one in Philly, NYC, and now DC. It opened about 6 months ago, but I’d never heard of it until Helene emailed me about it. It’s on M Street between 18th and 19th, so a bit of a trek from my office, but TOTALLY worth it. The whole concept behind it is that they use fresh ingredients and try to do as much farm to table as possible. From the website,

“Maoz Vegetarian is an international, quick service vegetarian restaurant chain, which brought to the world the delicious Maoz sandwich: FALAFEL. Our menu is strictly vegetarian and is based on simplicity, freshness and care. Our famous Maoz sandwich is home baked pita bread filled with crispy, handmade Falafel balls which are made from chickpeas, a vitamin rich legume, packed with plenty of proteins, minerals and vitamin B. The chickpeas are blended daily with fresh spices and vegetables and then fried in zero trans-fat Canola oil. All of our salads and sauces are freshly prepared every day using handpicked ingredients to assure superior quality and freshness.”

So they have falafel sandwiches, or falafel salads, and then a whole salad bar of fresh salads that are made daily and refreshed every few minutes so you know its as fresh as could be. The wraps come with the falafel in a pita and regular or sweet potato fries, and the salad comes with two mix-ins and a drink. For my salad, I added eggplant and hummus as my two mix ins and here it was before I got to the salad bar:

And then the salad bar was AWESOME. Everything was vegetarian and looked and tasted so fresh.

And from the other side:

The first part of the salad bar had: Olives, Pickles, Hot Peppers, Chickpea Salad, Beet Salad, and Carrot Salad:

The next part had Veggie Salad, Tabouli Salad, Broccoli + Cauliflower, Coleslaw, and Cabbage Salad:

And then the end had a bunch of sauces to choose from:

Salsa, Cilantro Sauce, Hot Sauce, and something else I didn’t catch the name of. I loaded up my bowl with practically everything on the salad bar, and you pay for it PRE-toppings, not by weight, which is awesome in my book. Here’s the finished product:

It was AWESOME. The falafel was really crispy and warm, and a perfect contrast to the chilled veggie salads. In my bowl was:

  • Falafel
  • Eggplant
  • Hummus
  • Chickpea Salad
  • Pickled Hot Peppers
  • Beet Salad
  • Veggie Salad
  • Red Cabbage Salad
  • Tabouli Salad
  • Broccoli + Cauliflower
  • Carrot Salad
  • Cilantro Sauce
  • Salsa

The bowl was HUGE. I should have saved some of it because I ate it all in one go and I was stuffed, but it was delicious, healthy, and loaded with lots of fresh veggies. Maoz is definitely a close second to Juice Joint for my favorite places to get lunch in DC when I don’t bring it. I highly recommend you check it out if you live here or visit DC, NYC, or Philly. So, so good.

I’m actually using a little bit of my comp time to leave early today so that I can unpack, go grocery shopping, and hopefully get to Bikram too. My body is missing it since it’s been over a week since I’ve gone – I really can’t wait to go. I find that when I go after taking some time off I have an awesome class, which is a bit different than I’d expect. I still feel a little unsettled since I got home so late last night and haven’t really had any downtime at all since I’ve been back. I’ll be back!

Question: What is your favorite place to go for lunch if you don’t bring it to work/school? What type of food is it?

Thriftin’

Sadly, my day off is over! It always seems to fly by before you know it! Even though the rain ruined our original plan, we didn’t let it ruin us. We decided to go thriftin’ because there’s still a bunch of random stuff we need for the apartment and going to thrift stores can be fun!

I found this one store online called Unique Thrift Store that was apparently the size of a Target and worth the trip, and we ventured out. There were a bunch of sneaky vendors at the beginning before you got into the proper thrift store that had a bunch of cool stuff that was not too cheap and caught our attention immediately. Once we realized they weren’t part of the “Customer Appreciation Day” (where everything was 25% off!) we quickly moved on, and this was no joke. This store was enormous, with rows and rows of household stuff, furniture, books, games, clothes, shoes, etc. Unfortunately, the furtniture wasn’t very good looking (we are in search of *the perfect* coffee table) and the household supplies (which we honestly don’t really need any) left something to be desired. We made a rule that we had to find at least two things to purchase in order to buy something at the store, and though Wil found one random spoon he wanted, we walked out empty handed.

We then spotted (in the same parking lot!) this Asian grocery store that we decided to stop in. It seriously blew my mind. They had tanks with live eel, shrimp, dungeness crabs, mini lobsters, and other fish, which were all SO CHEAP. They had rows and rows of produce, some I had never heard of before, and then aisles and aisles of asian groceries. I was so overwhelmed, I didn’t even take any pictures, and I zoomed from aisle to aisle focusing on random segments. At one I point I decided to get stuff to make sushi because of their fresh fish, rows of rice, and many difference kinds of seaweed, but then I aborted mission and tried to find soba noodles, but got distracted by tea. I want to go back to this place and have a game-plan, because we walked out with lots and lots of random things, but nothing that really went together. In terms of produce, we got a melon, white sweet potatoes, cucumbers,mango, avocado, and yams, and then crystalized honey, tea, tapioca flour, spices, skewers for the kabob, Sriracha hot sauce, and some other randoms. It was such a cool experience, and we were the only white people in the whole store, but I want to go back with a plan!

After that we ventured to another thrift store and actually found a good coffee table, some art for our wall, and some new grill utensils. All of the furniture was 50% off, so we got the table for $20! It’s a little low to the ground for my preference, but it works.

After we returned from our day of thrifin’, we decided to go to happy hour at Kora. They have some great happy hour specials, and its walking distance from our apartment. I started off with a glass of Malbec, and the bartender decided to put the whole bottle near my glass ‘in case I wanted more.”

That never ends well. 🙂 I got some bruschetta to start (which was $5 for happy hour!) and it was delicious.

The bread was toasty, the tomatoes juicy but perfectly firm, and the pesto perfect with the dish. Yum! We then split two tiny pizzas.

The first was a white pizza with provolone, mozzarella, and spinach (we asked for it without sausage).

The second was a margarita pizza with fresh mozz, tomato, and basil. Both were outstanding! They had a pizza oven that was in perfect view from where we were sitting at the bar, and the crust was crispy but perfectly fluffy. The cheese was all melty, and the toppings were perfect on both pizzas. So good! They were pretty small, so splitting two did not feel too indulgent (they were also $5 each for happy hour!)

Then we ended the meal with a Beet Salad.

It had roasted red beets, arugula, walnuts, gorgonzola, orange segments, and an orange vinaigrette. It was the perfect way to end the meal! The walnuts were toasted and everything just went so well together. This one was not on the happy hour menu but we were in the mood for some greens, so it was delicious.

I’m off to watch Nurse Jackie and make it an early night so I can get ready to go to work tomorrow (what’s that!?)! Have a good night!

“Light” Meal

Hiya! Tonight got away from me so I’m going to make this quick! This whole week FLEW by and I’m so happy its the weekend already. We had another office outing to Yogen Fruz today and I went back to my old standby, Green Tea frozen yogurt.

This has dark chocolate shavings and mochi (japanese rice cake) on top. Green tea ice cream has always been one of my favorite flavors, and this frozen yogurt tastes just as good as the real ice cream! It’s so creamy and packed with flavor. If you’ve never tried Mochi, it’s kind of like gummy bear texture but not quite as chewy, and much less flavor. I love them for the texture and its one of my favorite toppings for fro yo. Yum.

I was planning on going to Bikram after work, but I ended up getting caught up doing something until after 5, and by the time I finished it was too late to make it to the 6pm class. I decided to just come home instead, and once I was on the metro my eyes started getting so heavy and it hit me just how tired I was. I crashed immediately when I got home and slept for over an hour. It felt SO good. I rarely ever take naps because I usually wake up more tired than when I started, but today I didn’t really have a choice.. my eyes were closing on me! After I woke up I was really hungry, so I had a quick snack.

A toasted everything bagel thin with goat cheese from the farmers market… SO good! This was the first time this year I’ve tried this goat cheese and it is delicious. The woman who sells it owns around 500 goats (!!!) and raises them and makes the cheese on her farm. It’s so fresh and has such an intense flavor.

After my snack, I went and met my boyfriend at LIA’S for a quick meal after he got off. A vendor had dropped off this bottle of rosé of sangiovese wine for him to sample, so I had 1 and 1/2 glasses of that during our meal.

It was crisp and tasty. I don’t generally go for rosé wines, but the price was right on this one and I really enjoyed it. I wasn’t that hungry since I had the bagel thin, so I decided to go pretty light for my meal. I started with a bowl of minestrone soup which was their soup of the day. It was supposed to come with a proscuitto crostini but I ordered it without because the rest of the soup was vegetarian.

They also served some house-made foccacia bread with olive oil.

I had one piece of the foccacia and it was AWESOME. It had grey sea salt on it and it was really crispy on the outside and soft and warm on the inside. The olive oil is also really flavorful so just a little but goes a long way. It went really well with the minestrone soup, which was full of beans, tomatoes, and a delicious broth. We also got citrus cured salmon crespelle.

Which are basically little house cured salmon tacos. I had one of the three of these, and they have mache on them in addition. The salmon is cured with lemon, orange, lime, citrus vodka, salt, and sugar. Really tasty.

I ordered an appetizer salad for my main course with beets, mache, orange, goat cheese.

The oranges are hiding under the mache on this salad. I looove goat cheese and forgot until just now that I already had some today! Beets, orange, and goat cheese really is a winning combo – the sweetness of the citrus works so well with the other flavors, and I ate the whole thing.

I also had one small piece of my boyfriend’s pizza, which had shrimp, tomato, fontina, bottarga, scallion, garlic butter.

This was amazinggg… by now you probably know just how much I love pizza, and having one piece of someone else’s is the perfect solution in my book. Then, we had to try one of the new desserts (because we wanted to) so we went with the honey and pine nut tart with evoo gelato, spiced tuile cookie, and caramel sauce.

Oh.my.god. This was seriously amazing, and I don’t even love pine nuts that much! It kind of tasted like pecan pie but was a little looser, and the evoo gelato on top was just melt-in-your mouth incredible, and brought the whole dessert together.

Kind of funny because I intended to eat light but looking back it doesn’t look so light now does it. That said, I left feeling really satisfied, not stuffed by any means. But I kind of take back describing the meal as light. Kind of.

Good night!!