Favorite Places.

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I’ll just say it. I love food, specifically organic, local, homegrown food. So it’s no surprise one of my favorite places to go is the Farmer’s Market. I try to keep my schedule open so that every week I can got to the Downtown Santa Cruz Farmer’s market on Wednesday afternoons, try meaning that when it comes time to pick classes for next quarter I schedule them around keeping my Wednesday afternoons free.

Yes. I’m that person. But there’s just something so incredible about connecting with local farmer’s who grew the food with love and care that you will later eat.

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It’s also a fun way to discover new foods! This week I tried my first guava! It was delicious and probably not something I would have tried if the farmer at his fruit stand hadn’t suggested it. Not only are all the free samples at the farmer’s market super awesome and delicious, but they’re also an example of the pride those who grew them take in their fruit and produce.

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It’s pretty special to be in a place where those around me love and appreciate food as much as I do! Not only for it’s deliciousness but also for the way it enriches and fuels our life.

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After the Farmer’s Market I hit up Cafe Gratitude for a smoothie before heading back to campus. I cannot rave about Cafe Gratitude enough! I just love it. The people, the ambiance, the delicious vegan food! I love how creative they are in coming up with dishes and I want to learn all of their vegan culinary secrets. I ended up walking out with their special smoothie of the day: I am Fruitful. Pear, dates, house made almond milk, and vanilla. (P.S. if you’ve never tried popping 1-2 dates in your smoothie try it now! You won’t be disappointed )

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I ogled over their raw dessert case while I waited for my order.

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As soon as I got back to the apartment I promptly started heating up the stove to roast the beautiful beets I picked up at the farmer’s Market.

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Orange Roasted beets are one of my favorites so I got to chopping. The recipe is actually pretty simple!

Orange Roasted Beets

3 large red beets peeled and chopped

2-3 tbsps fresh squeezed orange juice(this time I actually used a mandarin orange so slightly sweeter)

1 tbsp Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar

1/2 tbsp extra Virgin Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix beets with orange juice, ACV, and EVOO. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and pour beets and marinade onto it. Place in oven and roast for about 35-40 minutes or until beets are easily pierced by fork.

I love these! and Usually make a lot, then store in a Pyrex container to add to salads or eat straight out during the week! They are also great dipped in hummus.

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They also smell great while roasting. I can smell mine right now. Mhmm. They should get me through a long night of reading for my classes. Speaking of reading I should get to it!

*Make time to check out your farmer’s market if your not already a regular at them. They are pretty special places 🙂

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