A Giant Soup a Day Keeps the Doctor Away! My Colourful Vegetable and Bean “Puzzle” Chicken Soup at Freshii

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Colourful, isn’t it?  A giant serving of soup, noodles, and vegetables a day keeps the doctor away!  Okay, so maybe not every day, but every once in awhile a meal like this makes you feel so good from head to toe, inside and out.  After feeling achy, flaming, and under the weather midweek several days ago, I decided that I need something warm and wholesome, something that would taste delicious and soothe me right down to my fingertips and toes.  I didn’t want anything heavy (the thought alone made me queasy), but I still wanted something flavourful and punchy to take away that icky feeling in my throat and mouth. 

Staying home wasn’t an option so I went out and enjoyed some fresh air and had myself some Freshii!  I had a mad craving for soup and thought, “Freshii has soup and I can finally try their rice noodles and stuff myself silly with vegetables until I roll down the street!”  That was the plan and I stuck to it.  Except the rolling down the street part.  I was like a little water balloon by the end of it, but I managed to stay upright for the rest of the day.

Every time I go to Freshii, a huge part of me always feels compelled to order the rice bowls because I love them so much.  I have to force myself to get out of that comfort zone to enjoy their other menu items and I did when I tried their special Mango Tango Burrito months ago last year.  I’ve always wanted to nosh on the rice noodles but the brown rice lover in me won out every time, so the rice noodles became a “I promise I’ll get to it” type of meal.  I finally made good on that promise last week when I came up with the perfect solution to my achies: pop two balloons with one pin by trying the noodles and soup at the same time!  Geninus!  And get my wholesome veggies in at the same time.  Win-win all around.

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Summer Love, Summer Salads

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I look forward to bean and pasta salads SO much when the warmer weather hits.  I enjoy eating them at any point in the year, but it’s so much more satisfying when the sun is out and you can feel the warm breeze waft through the windows.  Not to mention it’s just fun shopping at the fruit and vegetable markets around town.  It’s such an awesome feeling snagging fresh bunches of asparagus, tomatoes on the vine, and giant containers of juicy berries.  Last weekend my mom and I hit some of the fruit and vegetable markets in Korea Town down by Bloor St. W. between Bathurst and Christie St. and we picked up so much great stuff.  Blueberries, blackberries, avocados…we really lamented at not living closer because we would honestly go every day if we could.  A mix of beans, veggies, and pasta = meals I can eat every day for the rest of my life! 

Whenever my family and I want something simple and lighter to eat, these are our go-to meals and they’re so perfect for spring and summer and warmer patio weather.  I’ve always itched to get creative in the kitchen and it drove me crazy growing up when I wasn’t allowed to help and family would shoo me away and tell me to “go play”.  Now that I’m older, it’s been so great getting my hands busy in the kitchen and even though I’m still just a “helper” when it comes to preparing meals, it feels good to see a meal through from start to finish even if it’s something simple.  Healthy, crunchy, and juicy, summer salads are awesome because you can make a big batch and have yummy leftovers for the next day’s lunch.  Not to mention they’re filling and satisfying meals that don’t leave you filling gross and lethargic afterward.   

What I have for you is a smattering of summer salad photos with a bunch of different veggie, fruit, and pasta/noodle combinations.  Up top we have a crunchy salad of tomatoes, yellow and green bell pepper, white beans, chickpeas, and mixed kidney beans, and a fistfuls of chopped green scallions.  In the middle, a mixed bean and avocado salad with a sprinkling of cilantro and red pepper chili flakes atop udon noodles, and last, a pasta salad with Italian ditali pasta, roast chicken, green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, and fresh chunks of mango!  I think by the end of the summer I should have a veeery large collection of photos commemorating my salad love 😀