Do the Brew//The Kombucha Shop Review+Discount!

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The first time I tried kombucha I was 99.5% sure someone had mislabeled the bottle and it was actually a glass of “seltzer freshly marinated in a vat of old socks.”

This initial taste test was about six years ago, so I’d like to say my taste buds have matured, but I think I was just one of those “you grow to like it” kind of things. Actually, kind of like a kombucha culture, I’ve grown and grown (and have little brown stringy things attached to me) and now I don’t know if I could love it any more.

I traveled across the U.S. this summer picking up native kombucha in almost every state my tires crossed. I loved how regional fruits, vegetables, herbs, and spices were used to make the brews unique and filled with local love. I knew what I had to do: it was time to brew my own.

 

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Let’s back up a second. Even though I’ve been guzzling kombucha from the Pacific to the Atlantic many of you might not be familiar with it. Kombucha is a bubbly fermented drink made with black or green tea. It’s rich in antioxidants, vitamins, acids, and probiotics, making it a powerful immunity booster and detoxifier. It’s more exciting and nutritious that seltzer, but far less sugary than soda.

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The Kombucha Shop is a home brewing supply company based in Madison, WI. They take the work out of brewing and provide you with supplies and simple instructions on how to brew your ‘booch from start to finish. I was a total n00b and managed to turn out a great batch. If I can do it, you can do it!

 

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The kombucha brewing kit (available online) includes:

  • 1 gallon brew jar with lid
  • organic kombucha culture and starter tea
  • organic sugar
  • organic tea blend by Rishi Tea (outta MKE!)
  • reusable cotton tea bag
  • temperature strip
  • cotton cover & rubberband
  • pH test strips
  • pipet straw
  • DIRECTIONS!
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Those step by step instructions are awesome. They take all of the guess work out (plus, the pH strips gave me peace of mind that I wasn’t drinking some unsafe-to-drink concoction gone wrong). I brewed the tea it up, added the culture, and let it live on my kitchen cupboard for about two weeks and then I was ready to drrrrank it up. Mine turned out really well, but I wish I had opted to add some fruity flavor to it! Adding fruit once it’s nice and tart keeps the fermentation process going and makes it NICE and fizzy. I already have another rotation of brewing scheduled for tomorrow!

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If you are interested in brewing your own booch, use promo code: TKSVeg15 at check out to save 15% off any order! I highly recommend the whole experience and have been saving mad cash dolla bills by not spending $3-5 per bottle. DIY!

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Purely Elizabeth + A Giveaway

Weelllllll hello there! IMG_1165-2 I’m up early this Monday morning feeling chipper because I have some egg-cellent news to share (no eggs included [har har har]). I’ve been a fan of Purely Elizabeth for a while now and grab their granola whenever I see it for sale. While I like to make my own ‘nola at home, I often find my need to not be a hangry monster in the morning outweighs my desire to make something from scratch. That’s where this stuff comes in. It’s crunchy, buttery smooth, and has a short list of ingredients you can not only pronounce, but actually might recognize as ultra good for you. They use non-GMO and largely organic ingredients, no refined sugar, and no artificial colors or flavors. Seriously, here’s the list of ingredients for their original flavor granola:

  • organic certified gluten-free oats
  • organic coconutpalm sugar
  • organic raw virgin coconut oil
  • organic puffed amaranth
  • organic quinoa flakes
  • organic sunflower seeds
  • organic chia seeds
  • organic cinnamon
  • sea salt.

Not too shabby, right? [Right.] The reason I keep coming back to this particular granola is that it actually keeps me full until lunch (something cereal and toast never manage to do). IMG_1150 I’ve been a fan of the original flavor for a while (check out them clusters!), but when they sent me some sampley samples I got my paws on their blueberry granola for the first time. This kicks it up a notch and adds some chewy texture to the mix, which I really, really like. Screen Shot 2014-08-10 at 11.44.02 PM I also got to sample their oatmeal for the first time. Similar to the granola, it’s all simple ingredients you can pronounce. It’s a pre-mixed assortment of everything you want in your oatmeal, but takes out the work of buying six different things and finding the right mixture. The ingredients are: organic gluten-free oats, organic quinoa flakes, organic chia seeds, organic amaranth puffs, organic hemp seeds, organic flax seeds. Dat’s it. Because the mixture is so simple, I like adding some maple syrup, jam, or fresh fruit to the mixture to sweeten it up a bit. I even tried adding a little granola, which was DELISH. IMG_1182 I usually buy my Purely Elizabeth stuff at Target or Whole Foods, but there’s a long list of where you can cop a bag.

Want a little #protip? Click HERE for a $1 off digital coupon that you can print and use for $1 off any Purely Elizabeth product!

Okay, okay. Ready?

NOW COMES THE EXCITING PART!

I’ve got two bags of granola and two bags of oatmeal for you! Simply enter the giveaway below for a chance to win a bag of Purely Elizabeth’s Ancient Grain Granola PLUS a bag of Ancient Grain Oatmeal. Trust me, you want to try this stuff. You can come back every day for a bonus entry . The closing date is August 20 at 11:59 PM. Good luck!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

 

• One winner will be drawn randomly by using Gleam and will be notified via a Veganizzm email address, unless otherwise stated. Winner must respond with current/correct address within forty-eight (48) hours or prize will be forfeited and another winner will be drawn. • US residents only. • The Giveaway ends 11:59 PM on August 20 2014. (Eastern Time / EST).

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Vegan Nommin’ in Boston

I grew up in Boston but didn’t become vegan until I had moved halfway across the country to cheese-lovin’ Wisconsin. I would come home every summer hungry to see what was popping up on Boston’s vegan/vegetarian scene. Last week an article came out on CBS Boston’s site called “Boston’s Best Vegan-Friendly Restaurants.” While the list had a couple of my favorites (helllllooooo Veggie Galaxy!) it was tragically indicative of Boston’s lack of all things vegan. The article only featured five restaurants on the list. Is that bananas or what? I make lists longer than that in my sleep. A While I’m still new returning to the community, I thought it a good time to do some research on what’s what in Beantown. Plus, the type of research where I get to go out and eat food is exactly the type of research I like to do. This is by *no* means a comprehensive list, but a work in progress. I have a long list of places I want to try, but here’s what I’ve got so far.

  • Life Alive If I could eat one thing for the rest of my life it might be the Swami Bowl from Life Alive. I don’t know what they do, but something about the flavors in this bowl are like scooping crack into my mouth. The menu is full of forget-it’s-good-for-you-because-it’s-just-that-tasty items and some bomb ass smoothies.
  • Blue Shirt Cafe This place is unpretentious, inexpensive, and tasty. You order at the counter and they call your name over the loudspeaker when it’s done. It’s nothing fancy, but it delivers with some really good wraps and bowls. The Thai Peanut Tofu wrap is duh-lish.
  • Red Lentil  It’s in Watertown, so it may be a little off the beaten path for some, but the food is worth the drive. Nirvana Delight (ignore the name) is Tandoori-marinated tofu, a tasty quinoa salad, beet relish and cucumber (vegan) yogurt. I try to order things other than this, but usually fail. They serve wine and beer, but it’s still got a laid-back vibe.
  • Veggie Galaxy  All-around baller diner-style food. Food like your mom or grandma made (if they hadn’t used all of that meat and butter). The Glazed Seitan Loaf is everything I want in my comfort food. STAY. FOR. DESSERT.
  • Root The menu is short, but there are some nuggets of goodness in there. The place is the size of my pinkie, so I suggest take-out. The Root Burger is a hearty unison of black beans and quinoa that I would go back for.
  • Deluxe Town Diner  They’ve got the most bomb vegan breakfast burrito I’ve had to date. Scrambled tofu, soy cheese, guacamole, tomato, black beans and soy sausage wrapped in a tortilla. There’s something about this thing that I just can’t manage to emulate at home. So. Good.
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  • Elephant Walk While French food doesn’t exactly scream “veganism!” the other half of this fusion cuisine is thankfully Cambodian. They have a slew of vegan options, the best of which is the Tofu Amrita (organic tofu sautéed in a sweet and spicy satay sauce with coriander, cumin, cardamom, galangal, cinnamon, ginger, peanuts, star anis and lemon grass).
  • SOFRA Bakery & Cafe Much of the menu isn’t vegan, but the mezze plate is, and that alone is worth mentioning. Pictured below are: smoky eggplant with pinenuts, Moroccan style carrot salad, Brussels sprouts salad with barberries & walnuts, Muhammara (red pepper & walnut purée), squash skordalia with pepitas. DUHLISH. A great spot to sit outside for lunch.

photo (57) Well that’s it for now, kiddos. I expect to keep this list going, so give me your suggestions on where to try next! Until then, Izzy

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