Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tune-ing Into My Runs

I am always amazed to meet people who don't listen to music when they run.  I'm sure they are more in tune with their breathing and running than I am.  They probably like running a lot more than I do.  I've tried running without music once or twice (i.e. was forced to run without music when my ipod crapped out on me) and although it was tolerable, it is not something I would do regularly.  

How about running a race without music?  I don't think I could do it.  Yes, I know that in most races headphones are "illegal" but it's not like I'm trying to qualify for Boston or something.  And really, who's going to be out there policing that?  For me, music helps me keep a steady pace.  I strategically create my race-specific playlists based on the challenges that the course will bring.  I always start out with a couple of slower songs so I don't go too fast right out the gate.  Then the music starts to pick up a little bit.  I usually save the hard-core, inspirational songs for the end when I know I'll be dying to get to the finish line. If the course is hilly all the way through, I'll sprinkle those songs throughout so I have a good mix as I go up and down the hills.  I mostly only make playlists for races and then I use those when I do non-race running.  (It's great to put them on shuffle and then I don't get bored with them as quickly.)

Recently I read about a cool website in Shape magazine that is perfect for someone who tailors their playlist to help keep a steady pace.  The site is you do is enter your desired pace and it gives you pages and pages of songs that are around that pace.  So when I put it 8:00/mile I get songs that range from 7:36/mile to 8:24/mile.  I was excited to see that many of the songs are already on some of my lists.  There are also a lot of songs that I wouldn't have considered running to but I'd like to try out.  You can listen to the songs and then buy them from iTunes or Amazon.  You can narrow the search by genre if you want but I like the variety that comes with not selecting a specific type of music.  It helps keep it fresh when you can go from Lady Gaga to The Avett Brothers to Eminem to Weezer.  And you gotta throw in a little Big Willie Style to keep it fresh.

Go ahead and check out and you might also find inspiration in one of my playlists in the following race posts:

On the run: The Solstice Run - 10 Miles
On the run: Dexter-Ann Arbor 1/2 Marathon 
On the run: Live Like Andi 10-Mile Run 
On the run: Martian Invasion of the Races 1/2 Marathon 
On the run: Riverview Winterfest 4-Mile Run 

Do you listen to music when you run?

Friday, July 29, 2011

Farmer's Market Fridays - 7/29/11

Rain, rain, and more rain!  That's been the story of the last 24 hours.  After so many days of bone dry weather, however, I welcomed the rain with open arms.  By "with open arms" I mean I lounged around on the couch and felt grateful for not having to water - NOT that I was out there twirling around in puddles or having a Shawshank moment.

It was still drizzling when my mom and I went to yoga this morning.  So it was a dank, dreary morning, I was half-asleep, and my muscles were still sore from Wednesday's boot camp.  I thought that surely these things would add up to a long, painful yoga session at Sattva.  Aside from the 5-minute-per-leg pigeon pose, it went by surprisingly quickly.  I was a little more in tune with my breathing than usual and before I knew it, the lights were dimmed and it was time for savasana

After yoga we headed back across the street to the Farmer's Market.  Although the rain has been wonderful for the plants, it kept many of the vendors away this morning.  I noticed right away that Avalon was not there.  What?!?  No date bar?!?  But it's Friday!  Such a letdown.  Only a few tears were shed before I put on a brave face and soldiered on. 

Fortunately, our friends from Living Stones were there so we picked up our CSA shares.  We have some new things to try out this week, which is exciting!  

 Full CSA share - squash, cucumbers, onions, peppers, kale, rainbow chard, beets, basil, corn shoots, and 2 bags of salad mix

These are corn shoots.  I've never seen these before and am not sure yet what I'll do with them.  They sound interesting, though!

These are radish pods.  They taste like radishes but have the texture of snap peas.  I'll probably either add them to a salad or stir-fry them.  They weren't in the share but I couldn't pass up the opportunity to try these strange little veggies.

Despite the 10 inches of rain Chelsea received, Farmer Glen was there with all of his beautiful vegetables.  I imagine his journey this morning being something like a scene from Oregon Trail.  You know, the part where you get to the stream and have to decide to ford it or take a ferry?  I doubt there was a ferry that early in the day so I'm thankful he successfully forded the flood and made it to Dearborn safe and sound.

From Farmer Glen - beets, Yukon Gold potatoes, and carrots (check out that cool twisty one!)

My last stop was over at Prochaska Farms for some tomatoes.  Aren't they beautiful?  I'd tell you what kind they are but when I asked the girl at the stand, I did my usual thing where I heard her answer but didn't actually listen.  She may as well have been talking to Charlie Brown.  So if you ask me, they're "wah wah" tomatoes.  Oh well, they look good no matter what they're called.  

After the market we walked over to the Panera Cares Cafe.  My coffee was just the pick-me-up I needed but it wasn't the same without my date bar.  At least the company was still good.  My mom and I had a nice visit.  It's always fun to gossip catch up with each other.

Tonight is dinner at Woodbridge Pub with my family to celebrate my mom's birthday.  If you're a regular visitor to my blog you know how much I love Woodbridge!  If I try something new I'll be sure to let you know about it. 

Have a great weekend! 

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Beat the Heat: Simple Kale Salad

Kale is a green that I've only been eating for a few years.  I'd never heard of it before going vegan and now I absolutely love it!  Kale is packed with nutrients, including calcium, vitamin C, folic acid, and potassium (to name a few). I used to only put it in smoothies but now prefer to make spinach smoothies.  So I eat kale in other ways.  

Currently I have three favorite ways to eat kale - sauteed kale, kale chips, and kale salad.  In the summer when it's really hot, kale salad makes the most sense because you don't need to turn on the oven or use the stove.  Plus it's a nice change from the usual lettuce salad.

There are tons of recipes out there for kale salad, so although this isn't an exact recipe I found somewhere, it's sort of your basic recipe.  Some are more elaborate than others and may include tofu, avocado, or other chopped raw veggies.  I prefer to keep mine simple.

Kale Salad


1 bunch of kale
Olive oil
Juice of 1 lemon

Nutritional yeast


1. Tear the leaves into bite-sized pieces.  Place in a large bowl of water to rinse and remove any dirt.  Drain and allow to dry completely.  (I use my salad spinner.)

2. When dry, pour some olive oil into a bowl.  Dip your fingers into the oil, massage the leaves so they are covered with oil, and place them in a large bowl.  I find that you don't really need a whole lot of oil - maybe 1 tbsp or so.  Once you've done about half the leaves, you should be able to add the rest of the leaves and the ones that are already covered will transfer oil to the rest.  Just keep mixing and massaging until all the leaves are covered.

3. Squeeze the lemon juice over the kale.  Sprinkle with a few dashes of Bragg's.  Using tongs or your hands, mix everything together.  Cover and refrigerate.

4. When ready to serve, put kale into bowls and top with nutritional yeast.  Taste and add additional Bragg's, if needed.

Makes 4 side salads.

We had this last night for dinner.  The kale came from our Living Stones CSA.

Have you had kale salad?  How do you make yours?

Monday, July 25, 2011

Halo Bars

A new product on the vegan scene is Halo by Pro Bar.  It was the talk of VegNews when it came out and I've been tempted a couple of times to order it from Vegan Essentials.  Since the site recommends you choose the more expensive 2-day shipping or buy a cold pack for shipping, however, I never bothered to add one to my order.  

Last week I was in REI buying a new umbrella for Brian (now that some lucky German is enjoying Brian's last one) and before getting into line I made a quick stop over at the food bar area to see if there was anything new.  It was my lucky day because there, on the top shelf, were Halo bars!  Four boxes!  Every flavor!  It was quite exciting.  (Don't worry, although it sounds like I was actually jumping up and down by myself in REI, I was only jumping on the inside.)  I grabbed one of each, plus 2 chocolate chip cookie dough Larabars, and went to pay.  At the counter, the employee reminded me that the bars are all 10% off if you buy 12.  "Even these?" I asked incredulously, gesturing to the Halo bars.  If he wondered what was so special about these magical bars that I feared weren't part of the deal, he didn't let on.  (Was he the same guy who didn't flinch when I asked if the utility knife Brian was buying would be sharp enough to cut off his own arm?)  So although I wanted to try the Halo bars before buying more, I was suckered into buying one more of each.  And 2 more chocolate chip cookie dough Larabars.

As I mentioned, they come in 4 flavors - Honey Graham, S'mores, Rocky Road, and Nutty MarshmallowYou see, the big draw is that three of them have marshmallows (somewhat less elusive to vegans than they used to be but still not mainstream) and the other one is honey graham, though it contains no actual honey.  Are you jumping up and down yet with excitement?  If so, cool it.  They were not as delicious as I had expected.  You see, I was slightly misled by Vegan Essentials and their warnings about the chocolate melting in the heat.  I thought they'd be covered in chocolate, or at least drizzled in chocolate, so I was expecting more of a candy bar than a healthy snack bar.  That colored my first Halo bar experience.  Once I got over the fact that they were not candy bars, however, I found I liked them well enough to eat at least the ones I bought.  I tried all 4 flavors so I can give you a review for each. 

Nutty Marshmallow - I loved the combination of peanut butter and marshmallow!  It was simple and sweet.  The flax seeds were noticeable and went well with the other ingredients.  This was by far my favorite.

Rocky Road - This is the Nutty Marshmallow with the addition of chocolate chips.  I'm not always a chocolate fan but there were just enough chips to make it taste good but not overpower the other flavors.  Yum!

S'mores - Just okay.  I guess I just expected a little more out of it.  I'm pretty sure this is the Honey Graham with marshmallow and chocolate added to the mix.  Since I didn't like that one, it's not a surprise I didn't care for this one, either.

Honey Graham - I didn't think this one had any flavor!  Of course, this is the first one I ate and maybe when I try it a second time (knowing what to expect), I'll like it better.

To show actual size, I placed the Halo bar on a 6x6-inch napkin.  So yeah, pretty small.

The nice thing about Halo bars is that they are low in calories and sugar and contain certified organic ingredients.  They have flax seeds and hemp seeds, both of which I loved in snack bars.  They aren't very big, though, and are a little pricey.  However, for being organic, they surely aren't the most expensive bars out there.  Would I buy them again?  Maybe the Nutty Marshmallow or Rocky Road for a marshmallow-y little treat.  Would I buy them in mass quantities from REI or pay extra to have Vegan Essentials ship them to me?  No.  Will I eat the others that are sitting in my cupboard.  Most definitely!

Have you tried Halo bars?  What's your favorite healthy snack bar?

Friday, July 22, 2011

Farmer's Market Fridays - 7/22/11

Happy Friday, everyone!  I don't have too many pictures to share with you today.  Honestly, it was so hot already at 9 a.m. that we didn't stick around long at the Farmer's Market and I didn't take a single photo there.  I got my date bar from Avalon, my CSA share from Living Stones, and some potatoes and beets from Farmer Glen.  Then we quickly scooted into Panera Cares where I could enjoy my date bar in the A/C with an iced coffee.  Ahhhh...

Living Stones CSA

I have to say that I am VERY impressed with the amount of produce I received in my share today.  Up until this week, I was a little disappointed with the shares, especially since it's a full and half of it belongs to my friend Katie.  By the time we split it up it hasn't left either of us with all that much.  We didn't get our share last week because the crops were not quite ready so Living Stones took a week off to nurture them.  That seemed to do the trick!  I left with my huge bag nearly overflowing with fresh, beautiful greens and vegetables.  Our share included red and green kale, collards, brassica greens, rainbow chard, squash, kohlrabi, 2 bags of salad mix, basil, and 2 kinds of beets.  Not a bad haul, huh?  Amy promised tomatoes next week.  I can't wait!

I had to take a close up of these squash.  Aren't they beautiful?  They'll be delicious sliced and grilled.

By the way, I made sure to go to bed a little early and managed to stay awake during yoga this morning (unlike last week)!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Beat the Heat: 3-Bean Barley Salad

This recipe was inspired by the “Edamame 3-Bean Salad” recipe from Skinny Bitch in the Kitch.  With the temperatures soaring into the 90’s, I wanted to make a cold barley salad that I could keep in the fridge for the week and have as either a main or side dish most days.  After reading many barley salad recipes and finding none that appealed to me, I remembered the Skinny Bitch bean salad and figured I’d make a variation of that (I switched up the veggies a bit and used different dressing) with barley.   

Although I list the following ingredients, this is really a “make it your own” salad.  Add or substitute other veggies, herbs, beans, or even choose a different grain.  Quinoa or Israeli couscous would work well.  The same goes for the dressing.  Try some different flavors to see what works best.  A light miso dressing or even just some lemon or lime juice would be fresh and delicious.  Because when I made it I wasn't sure exactly what flavor I'd like the dressing to be, I didn’t actually mix all the dressing into the whole salad at once.  I added it to my own portion each time I had it.  Brian had his in a wrap with avocado and didn’t even add any dressing.  If you are planning on serving this at a get-together and think most of it will get eaten, go ahead and mix it in all at once.  If you’re saving it for a few meals, hold off on the dressing.  It's much more versatile without it.  

Also note that this makes a LOT of salad.  It ended up being too much for the two of us to eat in a week so I'd suggest scaling it back a bit (you could probably even get away with the same amount of veggies but half of the barley) if you're cooking for two.   

3-Bean Barley Salad

1 cup uncooked pearl barley
3 cups water

1 ear cooked corn, kernels cut off OR ½ cup frozen corn (rinsed under cold water to thaw)
1 cup shelled edamame
1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 15 oz. can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup shredded carrots
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, cut in half
¼ cup chopped fresh herbs (I used basil)

Fat-free Orange Juice Vinaigrette (recipe follows) or dressing of choice 


1. Combine barley and water in a medium-sized pot.  Bring to boil, cover, and reduce heat to simmer.  Cook for 50-60 minutes until all the water has been absorbed.

2. While the barley is cooking, prep your veggies and place them in a large bowl.

3. When the barley is done, place it in a sieve or colander and rinse under cold water.  Drain well and add to veggies.  Add dressing.  Stir to combine.  Serve cold or at room temperature.

Makes about 10-12 cups.

Fat-free Orange Juice Vinaigrette

½ cup white wine vinegar
½ cup orange juice
1 tbsp Dijon mustard

Whisk all ingredients together and season to taste with salt and pepper. 

I ate mine over a bed of mixed greens from our CSA.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Can I Call Myself a Runner?

"Hate running, love the results." - Nike t-shirt

I run, therefore I am a runner.  Right?  However, sometimes I feel that to give myself that title, it should be something I enjoy, something I do because of intrinsic reasons.  It should be a part of me.  I mean, I shop but I wouldn't call myself a shopper because I despise mall crowds and hate trying on clothes.  I ride my bike sometimes and cycle indoors but wouldn't call myself a biker or a cyclist.  I pull weeds and grow tomatoes but it's a chore so I would never call myself a gardener.  You get the point.  Let me take you back a few years so you can see how my relationship with running has evolved.

I used to hate running.  I know, hate is such a strong word but it is much kinder than words I used to use.  Just ask Brian.  Running together would not have been a good thing for our marriage.  When I started taking a boot camp class about 5 years ago I was forced to run. Okay, not forced but it was either run or be left behind.  Gradually, the more I ran in class the easier it got and the more I (dare I say it?) liked it.  Liked, not loved.  Still, I never ran on a treadmill. (Ever seen someone trip and fall off one of those things?  Well, I wasn’t going to be that person.)  I never ran on a trail, through my neighborhood, or at the park.  I didn’t even own a pair of running shoes, instead I used some ancient pair of heavy cross trainers from TJ Maxx.

4 years ago I signed up for my first race – a 10k – having never run more than 3 miles at a stretch.  I really just hoped to make it to the finish line without having to walk.  I had never trained and had no expectations.  When I finished the race in 53:01, I was exhausted but exhilarated.  I had a taste of a real race and wanted more.

A month later I ran a 5.8-mile leg of the Detroit Free Press Marathon as part of a 5-person relay team.  I did pretty well – better than I had at my first race.  That was October.  I didn’t run again until April when I foolishly decided to sign up for a half marathon the day before the race.  Again, without training, I not only finished the race without walking but also had an even better pace than the last time.  (Though the lack of training resulted in severe ITB pain – do not attempt.)

Over the next 3 years I went on to run 4 more 10ks, 2 10-milers, and 9 half marathons.  Until my recent summer races, almost every time my pace was better than the last.  I achieved a PR of 1:41:04 for a half marathon, which I was darn proud of.  Sounds like I’ve built a solid case to prove I love running, right?  Well . . . not exactly. 

If I really loved running, I’d be hitting the pavement at least a few times a week instead a few times a month.  Or a season.  I’d be out there rain or shine instead of having an excuse for almost every type of weather other than sunny, windless, and 60 degrees.  I’d actually train in order to improve my performance instead of just hoping that race day adrenaline will power me through the run.  And finally, my “long run” and my “short run” would be different distances instead of 4 miles each. 

But when I get my race gear out the night before the big day, pin on my number (making sure it’s straight and centered, of course), and select the perfect pre-race banana, I am excited.  When the alarm goes off in the morning I leap out of bed as if I’m about to go on a vacation.  When I get to the race I am so keyed up I can’t stand still.  I am literally jumping up and down in anticipation.  The gun goes off and I run and I run and I don’t stop until I cross that finish line.  Mostly I don’t stop because “the faster I run, the sooner I’ll be done” (my oft-used race mantra), but whatever gets me through, right?  Even if it’s not the best race and even if it’s so brutal that I think it may well be my last, the feeling of finishing is so amazing that all those negative thoughts fly out of my head and I’m walking (sometimes limping) on air.  I can’t wait until next year to run the race again.  Or until the next month when there’s another race.  I’m so pumped to run again.  And of course I don’t run again until that next race.  I have great intentions but when it comes down to it, I just don’t love running.

So what does this mean?  Can I call myself a runner when I just can’t wait for it to be over?  When the thought of running even a mile is more than I can stand?  When I run because I feel like I HAVE to do it?  When I feel like it's a chore?  Is there something I can do to like it more or is it something you either have or you don’t?  Maybe it's just a slump.  Or maybe it's a normal love/hate relationship.

Please leave a comment to share your thoughts, especially if you've experienced anything similar.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Vegan Eats on Maui

Although it seems to be the land flowing with fish and pork, there is a surprisingly decent amount of vegan food to be found on Maui.  Like with every vacation, I did some research prior to going so we could have at least a few places where I knew I could eat something other than a salad.  (Although a salad is almost always an option, even if it's the only option.)  And to be safe, I took a large Zip-Lock bag filled with Larabars and Luna Bars, which work great for a snack or a light meal paired with fruit.

Here’s a rundown of what and where I ate while on Maui:

Whole Foods

After getting our rental car from the airport, our first stop was at Whole Foods in Kahului.  Had I thought about it ahead of time, I would have left the 2 lbs of Larabars at home and bought them here.  We ended up at Whole Foods almost every day.  Our hotel room had a fridge so we stocked up on fruit and yogurt for breakfast (a big money saver vs. going out to eat every morning).  We also bought water, ate there the first day, and picked up sandwiches/wraps for lunch another day.  As with all Whole Foods, there are a lot of vegan sandwiches and wraps, as well as pizza and a vegan burrito bar.  They had very few bakery items but I was able to find enough vegan sweets elsewhere.

The E2 Diet Dinner Bowl - brown rice, carrots, black beans, salsa, and guacamole with 3 corn tortillas

Strawberry papaya
Mutant avocado?
Fresh Veggie Sandwich - lettuce, tomato, carrots, and avocado

The Hula Grill

Located on Ka’anapali Beach at Whalers Village, the Hula Grill was just a short walk from our resort.  There are several menus depending on if you are going to eat in the dining room or in the Barefoot Bar (outside with a sand floor) and whether you are there for lunch or dinner.  We ate here three times.  Twice I had the Gado-Gado Salad, which consists of fresh chilled veggies and brown rice, served on a bed of lettuce and topped with a Thai peanut dressing.  SO delicious!!  I will surely be recreating this salad at home before too long.  Another day I had a tropical fruit platter that was also very good, although a little pricey for what it was.

My first Maui Mai-Tai
The Gado-Gado (only on the lunch menu)

Tropical Fruit Taster - mango, papaya, pineapple, passion fruit, lychee, watermelon, strawberries, and apple banana with sweet banana dip

The Reefs Edge (a.k.a. Link @ Sheraton Lounge)

This is a little bar inside the resort.  We went there three nights for drinks (Happy Hour is 8:30-10:00) and one night we each ordered an appetizer as a late dinner.  Mine was called Diamonds of Tofu, which is a misleading name because they were actually triangles.  It was extra-firm tofu sprinkled with green onions and came with a sesame-ginger dipping sauce on the side.  It was nothing to write home about but it was decent.  Plus, at $8, it was cheaper than anything else any Sheraton dining establishments had to offer.

MaLa Ocean Tavern

Brian found MaLa through some online searching and boy am I glad he did!  It sure doesn’t look like much from the outside but it’s situated right on the coast and the view from the back is amazing.  Like most restaurants on Maui, it is very open and breezy and you can hear the sounds of the ocean right outside the windows.  I ordered the Tofu Stir-Fry.  The veggies were fresh and crisp and the sauce was flavorful and delicious.  The tofu was very tasty but unfortunately, it was fried.  Had I thought about it ahead of time I would have asked for fresh.  Overall, though, it was a delicious meal in a beautiful setting with friendly wait staff.  

Complementary edamame puree in tomatillo salsa served in a lava rock bowl (with fresh tortilla chips for dipping)
Tofu Stir-Fry - tofu, sesame seeds, pea pods, edamame, shiitake mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, bean sprouts, and brown rice

Flatbread Co.

We stopped here after a long day of driving on the Hana Highway and were starving.  Flatbread Co. is right on the highway in the little hippie town of Pa’ia.  Although our server wasn’t exactly friendly we got the feeling that it’s generally a homey place and seemed to have a real sense of community.  There are a ton of different flatbreads to choose from or you can create your own.  We shared the house salad and the vegan pizza (with added roasted red peppers).  Both were delicious and we’re pretty sure anyone who noticed was amazed at how quickly two little people devoured that whole pizza.  Flatbread Co. is definitely worth a trip to if you’re in the area. 

Local organic lettuce topped with green papaya, carrots, arame seaweed, sesame seeds, and pineapple vinaigrette

Vegan flatbread with tomato sauce, avocado, tomatoes, onions, mushrooms, roasted red peppers, garlic oil, and herbs

Mana Foods
Also located in Pa’ia is Mana Foods, a grocery store filled with more varieties of miso, tofu, and non-dairy yogurt than you could ever dream of.  It’s a healthy grocery store with a deli, prepared foods, bakery, bulk bins, produce, and refrigerated and shelf-stable items.  We didn’t get there until our last day on the island, which was both bad and good.  Bad because I could have been eating things from there all week.  Good because I would have likely eaten myself into a sugar coma trying all the amazing baked goods they had to offer.  It’s also pretty pricey but then again, everything on Maui expensive.  Whole Foods might be a (slightly) cheaper place to stock up on yogurt and fruit but their bakery has nothing on Mana!

All of these are baked in-store and most of them are vegan!  I bought the coconut chocolate chip and Brian had the walnut chocolate chip.
This is their Peanut Butter Truffle.  It's probably made of peanut butter, butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla, more like a "Buckeye Ball" than what I would consider a truffle.  Call it what you will - I call it "ono!"
Fresh coconut water with lime juice - very refreshing!
Sansei Sushi

We are big sushi fans and being so close to fresh fish, Brian really wanted to have sushi on Maui.  Sansei has award-winning reviews and was pretty close to our resort so it seemed like a great idea. I must admit that it was probably the best sushi I’ve ever eaten and Brian agreed. It’s really busy there so if you don’t have a reservation, expect to wait.  We were there at 7:00 on a Thursday and waited 45 minutes.  No worries, though.  That gave us plenty of time to look over the menu and Google the names of sushi rolls we'd never heard of before.

Hiyayakko - cold soft tofu with fresh ginger and green onions; thankfully our server was looking out for us when he asked them to leave off the Katsuo Bushi, which is some sort of fishy topping.  And believe it or not, we ate this soft tofu with chopsticks - not an easy task even for experienced chopstick users (whom we are not).

 Grilled Veggie Roll - shiitake mushrooms, roasted red pepper, avocado, yellow squash, cucumber, and asparagus; Ume Shiso Maki - plum paste and shiso leaf

Lahaina Pizza Co.

Back in January, Lahaina Pizza Co. was listed on the Vegan Pizza Day website so I was excited to try it.  They have a lunch special with an individual deep-dish pizza and a side salad so Brian and I could each get out own and not have all kinds of leftovers.  Unfortunately, even though the crust is dairy-free, our server said that they use butter in the pan so the pizza doesn’t stick and there is nothing they can do about that.  (Ever heard of olive oil?)  I’m so glad I asked!  Instead I got the only other option – a chopped salad, minus the 2 kinds of cheeses, croutons, and pepperoni.  It turned out to be really tasty and much bigger than I thought so everything worked out for the best.  Brian gave the pizza a thumbs-up.

Chopped Italian Salad - romaine, chickpeas, cabbage, carrots, black olives, tomatoes, green peppers, artichokes, and banana peppers with sweet papaya seed dressing on the side
Funny side note – The manager brought me the salad and there was a huge roll on the side.  I pointed to it (like I’d never seen a roll before, Brian said) and asked what it was.  The manager politely said it was a roll.  I explained that I’m vegan and asked if it has butter, milk, etc.  He looked slightly horrified as he said yes, quickly apologized, asked if he could take it away right then, and then apologized several more times.  I found it really amusing.  Maybe he had a bad run-in with a vegan in the past?  

Ono Gelato

In Hawaiian, “ono” means “delicious.”  I can’t speak for the gelato but Ono has a whole case of dairy-free sorbetto that is truly “ono!”  When we were in Lahaina for their 4th of July celebration we stopped into Ono.  I wasn’t really even looking at the cases because I assumed that everything had dairy so luckily Brian noticed that they had dairy-free chocolate sorbetto.  I got excited and stupidly asked the girl working there, “The chocolate says ‘dairy-free.’  Does that mean it’s DAIRY-FREE?”  Instead of saying “That’s what ‘dairy-free’ means, you dumb ass!” she politely told me that yes, it's vegan, and actually the whole case is, as well.  Jackpot!  I took her suggestion and had a medium cup with half chocolate, half strawberry.  YUM!  When we went back a few days later I had a mix of passion fruit and mango, which was also very tasty.  We went there a third time and they had cinnamon coconut but I was too full from my Lahaina Pizza Co. salad to have any.  Another time for sure.

Dark chocolate and strawberry - a winning combination

8 flavors of dairy-free (vegan!) sorbetto 

Coconut Glen’s

Coconut Glen’s is a roadside coconut ice cream stand, located on the Hana Highway.  I’d read about it on a blog so had been watching for it all afternoon.  They had about 8 flavors of coconut ice cream, all dairy-free.  I had plain coconut ice cream with coconut candy bits (see below for a description of coconut candy).  Brian’s had some kind of beer from Maui Brewing Co.  Both of us liked our choices.  They had some other interesting varieties, such as chocolate chili.  Had it not been so far away I would have loved to return.  If you decide to drive to Hana, which you sort of have to do if you go to Maui, be sure to stop at Coconut Glen’s.  Where else can you eat fresh coconut ice cream out of a coconut bowl with a coconut spoon?  

Just look for the sign - you can't miss it!
Coconut ice cream with coconut candy
Sweet van!
The coconuts are chopped right out front.  It doesn't get any fresher than that!

And last but not least…coconut candy

No blog post about Maui food (vegan or otherwise) would be complete without mentioning coconut candy – little nuggets of sugar-sweet, chewy coconut.  It is made by cooking coconut chunks in cane sugar and water.  That’s it.  No weird ingredients or preservatives; just coconut and sugar (both grown on the island, of course).  We just ate it straight from the bag but it was very delicious in my ice cream from Coconut Glen’s so I may have to make my own coconut candy ice cream.  You can pretty much find it anywhere you go on Maui.  Mostly we saw chunks but some places sell it in thin strips.  Both tasted good but I’m partial to the chunks, which seem to be more prevalent.  We bought a few bags to bring home and one is already gone (sorry Brian).

A few places we didn’t eat at but will keep on the list for next time (and yes, there will be a next time):

CafĂ© Prana – vegan Indian food in Haiku
Veg Out – completely vegan “fast food” type place in Haiku
Joy's Place - located in Kihei
Fresh Mint - all veg in Pa'ia just down the street from Mana

Longboards at the Marriot on Ka’anapali Beach – non-veg but tofu options
Tropica at the Westin on Ka’anapali Beach – non-veg but tofu options

You can view other picture from our trip here.