three day catalyst cleanse


For those of you who have been following my blog, you’re probably wondering why. Similar to when I go vegetarian for Lent, I confuse my readers by making some drastic change to my diet. “Why would you do this to yourself? Why would you go three days where all you’re allowed to consume is water, decaffeinated tea, and the juices? You’re crazy.”

Here are my reasons. I’ve had some friends who have done it and they said they’ve felt great afterwards. They have also mentioned how they’re a little more cautious of what they eat after the cleanse.

The primary reason though, is preparation for my trip. I shall be embarking on a 10 day trip to Seattle/Portland starting tomorrow with someone who, like me, will get excited and attempt to eat everything. On the itinerary is several burger joints, restaurants, bars, breweries, etc. There’s just too much to name. So yeah, we thought it’d be a good idea to “cleanse” ourselves before the 10-day feast, I mean trip. In hindsight, you’d think preparation for this trip would be eating obnoxiously, right?

The Catalyst Cleanse is a daily juice cleanse consisting of six juices which are consumed in a specific order each day. The duration of your cleanse can be as short as a single day or as long as a month! There are only five juices and the green juice is consumed as #1 and #5. The five juices are as follows (in order of consumption):

-Signature Green Juice (cucumber, celery, apple, parsley, spinach, lemon, lime, ginger)
-Spicy Lemonade (lemon, agave, cayenne)
-Carrot Ginger Juice (carrot, apple, celery, lemon, lime)
-Watermelon Lime Juice (watermelon, lime)
-Creamy Cashew Milk (cashew, agave, cinnamon, milk)


Day one was on a Thursday and was definitely the worst. As with everything new, I like to taste things when I eat/drink them. Taking small sips of the green juice was probably not for the best. At 6 in the morning, I took a long time to take down all 16 oz. of green juice.


Luckily, every other juice was much more pleasant than the green. Don’t get me wrong, the green was refreshing, though the taste was not quite my cup of tea.

My favorite was easily the cashew milk. After drinking the second green juice of the day, it was very enjoyable to drink the milk which tasted close to horchata!

Would I do this again? Doubtful. My life revolves too much around food that three days on a juice cleanse was torture. I surprisingly wasn’t hungry during the cleanse. It was more a want to taste something other than juice. Also, to spare you the details, you will go to the bathroom a lot. That’s not exactly pleasant…especially when you’re hanging off a bridge…

toasting to the end of the cleanse


There were some good points though. It made me realize how little fruit and vegetables I consume daily, something I’ve been wanting to change/plan on changing moving forward. I also was sleeping much earlier than I usually do. Like, more than an hour or two earlier and waking up without much of a problem.

Post cleanse, I realized that I’m getting full much easier from smaller meals. Not exactly a bad thing, though this stomach is going to have to increase it’s capacity for this trip!

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jar bar


I was invited to try some food from Philly’s latest (and maybe only?) raw food restaurant & juice bar, Jar Bar. If you’re not familiar, raw food is pretty much what you think, uncooked and unprocessed. I’ve never tried raw food before, so this was to be my first experience.

Half their menu consists of sandwiches, wraps, salads, and desserts. The other half consists of juices or elixirs which are full of full of herbs, fruits, and other healthy ingredients. They are, after all, owned by the two behind the Catalyst Cleanse.


I started off with the burger & fries. Since it’s raw, there is no bun. The patty is made up of almonds, flax, carrots, celery, and several other ingredients. Despite looking and tasting completely different than a regular burger, the raw burger had some good flavors. The fries are raw jicama, seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic, and paprika. I wasn’t too into the fries, mainly due to the fact that I don’t think I like raw jicama.


To accompany the burger & fries, I ordered an almond banana elixir. The elixir was quite good and pleasantly sweet. It had almond milk, almond butter, banana, hemp seeds, and vegan vanilla protein powder.

I ended the meal with a chocolate mousse pie, which was made from cacao powder, agave, avocado, coconut oil, dates, and shredded coconut. It was smooth and chocolaty, with a sweet date crust which reminded me of a Larabar.

In conclusion, if you’ve never had raw food, it’s worth giving it a try. It’s healthy and you just might like it. During my meal, I thought I’d still be hungry after but I was quite content. The elixirs are pretty good and I’ll definitely come back for one soon.

Also, I’ll be going through a 3-day Catalyst Cleanse in a couple of days…

Jar Bar
113 S 12th St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
215.923.1600

local 44 – buffalo tofu hoagie


Lent is over and I’m back to not having any dietary restrictions, so it may be shocking that my first post after Lent is about another meatless dish I consumed. The buffalo tofu hoagie at Local 44 in West Philly was one of the tastiest things I had during my fast.

The buffalo tofu hoagie is a vegan take on a buffalo chicken sandwich. It’s made up of chicken fried tofu, brown sugar chipotle glaze, celery remoulade, and green onions. The fried tofu had a crisp, glazed outside, with a soft interior while the remoulade imitated blue cheese quite well, as the texture was similar. It was served on a fresh roll and accompanied with a generous amount of delicious fries.

Local 44 has a great tap list as well as other carnivorous food if vegan/vegetarian fare isn’t a draw for you. Definitely looking forward to my next visit.

Local 44
4333 Spruce St.
Philadelphia, PA 19104
215.222.2337

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sketch (vegetarian visit)


My housemate has never been to Sketch. We made sure to change that fact this past weekend. Part of me was upset I couldn’t have a burger made from meat, but the other part was looking forward to trying their vegetarian/vegan options that they had to offer.


On the burger side of the menu, the only options (for me) are vegan burger and seitan. The vegan burger is a housemate patty made from several different types of beans and spices. I asked about the seitan and was told that it was like “pulled pork” and could be served as a barbecue sandwich or even a cheesesteak. As soon as she mentioned cheesesteak, I jumped at the opportunity! I’ve been wanting a vegetarian cheesesteak for the past couple days.


The orders were in, mine was a seitan cheesesteak with grilled onions and cheddar and the housemate’s was a vegan burger with cheddar and chipotle sauce. We both went halfsies so I was able to try some of the burger, too. The burger came on the same LeBus bun that their other burgers are served on. It was topped with cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and chipotle sauce. The bean burger was tasty and very hearty. The outside had a slight, pleasant crisp to the outside. The inside had a lot of flavor and wasn’t dry. The seitan cheesesteak outshined the burger though, in my opinion. Firstly, the cheesesteak was served on a fresh roll, a definite plus. I originally had second thoughts about ordering it with the cheddar since I didn’t think it would end up as gooey as American. Sketch, however, served that cheesesteak with hot, gooey cheddar! The onions were delicious. They were grilled long enough that they had some caramelization to it. The seitan was some of the best seitan I’ve had. It was juicy and tasted like it was marinated. I’ve only had one seitan cheesesteak before which was good, but this was definitely superior.


Oh, we also got their belgian fries and an additional order of the green chili cheese fries. Yes, I’m aware it’s a lot of food, but I should mention that one of our friends joined us later to eat 70% of the fries! I won’t judge her.

Check out my last visit to Sketch.

If you’re vegetarian or just feel like abstaining from meat for a meal, Sketch has two excellent options for you!

Sketch
413 East Girard Ave
Philadelphia, PA 19125
215.634.3466

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the abbaye


It’s been almost a year since I’ve visited The Abbaye. I had a great time last year when I went even though it was just for a drink or two. There is no good excuse for why I haven’t been in so long and after last night’s dinner, I will not forget about this place again.

One of the reasons I chose to come here last night, besides the fact that it’s been too long, was that they have some great vegetarian/vegan food options. Some of my friends have raved about their vegan wings in particular. That being said, vegan wings were ordered for our appetizer (pictured above). They were delicious. The Abbaye makes these in house! The wings were full of flavor and had a crisp outside, a texture almost dead on with fried chicken skin. These were some of, if not the best, faux meat experiences I’ve ever had! After Lent is over, I’m still going to order these…they’re THAT good.


seitan cheesesteak

In addition to the wings, I ordered the seitan cheesesteak. I’ve had other sandwiches made with seitan before and enjoyed them, however, this was the first time I’ve had a vegetarian cheesesteak. The cheesesteak is served on a roll with melted gruyere, grilled onions, grilled tomato, and a roasted garlic aioli. I haven’t had other veg cheesesteaks to compare but this was delicious as well. The chopped up pieces of seitan were tasty and not dry at all. The cheesesteak came with a pickle, frites, and a dipping sauce.

The menu is pretty huge. Even though I could easily eliminate the meat options, I still read through everything and started to wonder how some of the stuff would taste once Lent is over (ex. Abbaye Burger, Smokey Chimay Wings). I NEED to come back to try those. Seriously had an awesome time last night. I’d like to apologize to my stomach for ignoring this fantastic place in NoLibs for almost a year. Hope to be back soon!

Also, I got to try one of their pâtés at this year’s Brewer’s Plate and it was great! Looking forward to trying the non-vegetarian ones!

The Abbaye
637 N 3rd Street
Philadelphia, PA 19123
215.627.6711

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