As soon as Alex from Vivid Memories commented on my first blog post about Kale Eatery this morning, I thought to myself, “oh my goodness, has it honestly been SIX MONTHS since that first and only entry?!” Guilty as charged. Time has just passed by in a blur and here we are enjoying the last weekend of June and making plans on how we’re going to spend our Canada Day weekends. I can’t believe it’s already been 7 months since I started Ate by Ate. In some ways, it feels like old-hat, making blog posts every day about awesome things I’ve eaten and cookies I’ve baked, and getting into the routine of keeping up with as many food events as possible around the city.
In other ways though, I still get that nervous, slightly anxious butterflies-in-the-stomach feeling every so often knowing I’m wearing my heart on my sleeve for the whole cyberworld to see. It’s a weird feeling knowing that your passion is splashed across the internet available for the whole world to see and all you want is keep doing what you love to do and for others to love what you do too. If you can believe it, I’ll be celebrating my 200th post in less than a week and all I can say is that there will be cupcakes to celebrate!
Anyway, Alex’s comment was the sheer motivation I needed to kick my own butt in gear! A follow-up blog post about Kale is long overdue and really, considering how much I adore Kale I should be blogging about this vegetarian and vegan heaven every week! Now, for those who are familiar with Kale Eatery’s self-serve buffet, pay-by-weight arrangement ($2.40/100g), you might be thinking, “it’s self-serve buffet style, how many blog posts could you possibly do about this place? Won’t you end up just posting photos of the same stuff and writing about the same food?” Ah, au contraire my lovelies. Of course there are stamples that are present on a daily basis including yummies like their fluffy, freshly steamed kale, brown rice, and garlic herb roasted potatoes. However, there are newbies strutting their stuff on the buffet stage all the time on a rotating basis and I was delighted to make friends with these new eats! Not to mention, Kale serves food outside of their pay-by-weight buffet including wraps, muffins and pastries, smoothies, and fresh juice. I always gravitate to the buffet though because I love it that much.
Thanks to FabFind and my friend Wini (who gave me the heads up about the deal on my Twitter), I snatched up 3 -count ‘em THREE- $7 for $15 vouchers for Kale, one of which I used last week. I’m not obsessed, I swear. Just very…in love…with them. *whistles* Walking into Kale made my heart all sorts of happy. I grabbed a dish and got to work! Although I grabbed some of my usual stand-bys (steamed kale, portobello mushroom rice, and garlic roasted potatoes), I was so excited to plop a generous helping of never-before-seen-and-eaten eats onto my plate: curry vegetables (red and green bell peppers, zucchini, and carrots in a curry sauce), green lentil potato salad (with celery hearts and peas, YUM!), spicy hummus (which I generously slathered on my potatoes), and spinach quinoa salad with cranberries and mango.
My heart still flatters at the thought of the green lentil potato salad and spinach quinoa salad, my two particular favourites and standouts from this meal. The lentils and potatoes were so soft they melted in my mouth and the spinach salad was so bright and colourful and fruity. It was just so full of personality and personality is exactly what the buffet has. You can construct a colourful plate full of different textures and you truly get to take advantage of many grains, proteins, and vegetables that are either often overlooked or underused at other eateries. We all know how boring it would be to see lettuce and tomatoes at a vegetarian buffet. In fact, I think many of us would be downright infuriated with such bland, run-of-the-mill choices. Being vegetarian forces you to be creative, especially with your proteins and Kale does a wonderful job of providing a huge selection of food that is actually nutritious and exciting to eat.
Bright green leaves of baby spinach with fluffed quinoa, real cranberries, and juicy diced mango made up the colourful spinach salad and chunks of creamy golden potatoes rubbed elbows with leafy celery hearts and delicious green lentils. Lentils have become one of my favourite legumes (I thank my first year of grad school for introducing me to these morsels of yumminess) and I think they add great, crunchy texture to salads and rice, not to mention amazing flavour and thickness to soups. I also adore real cranberries and don’t mind the natural sourness and tartness of them at all. They were bright, fresh, KILLER salads and they made my meal that much more enjoyable. Kale hit the nail on its head with these two salads because the combinations were creative and scrumptiously delcious. This is truly what vegetarian and vegan dreams are made of.
Kale Eatery is located at 2366 Yonge St. (near the intersection of Yonge and Eglinton, just north of Eglinton). Their website is up and running which you can check out