We have had a big crush on Alexandra of the blog In My Bowl, ever since she first came on our radar a couple of years ago. She has been incredibly supportive of Greenheart from the start and we have had the privilege of becoming friends with her over the past few months and couldn’t be more excited to feature her as this week’s Women Crush Wednesday!
Alexandra is a self proclaimed plant-based wellness warrior who creates the most stunning recipes and provides wonderful tidbits of knowledge to share with her followers (check out her Instagram page here). On top of her blog, Alexandra just recently launched a supper club series of curated dinners in the DC area called The Wandering that we can’t wait to attend! Curious to know more about her journey to plant-based eating and some of her favorite spots to eat in DC? Read more below!
Q. Describe yourself in 5 words.
A | Mama Bird, Wellness Warrior & Nutritionist
Q. Tell us a little about your journey to plant-based eating.
A | My journey with plant based eating began during my undergraduate program at American University – I graduated in 2011 with a B.A. in neuropsychology, concentrating in eating behaviors. I was completely enamored by human anatomy, the human digestive system, and how the components of food and the act of eating affected the whole person: physically, mentally, and emotionally. Though I’d always been a very mindful and healthful eater, growing up in a ‘health conscious’ home, with that knowledge (the power and importance of an unprocessed and primarily plant based diet in reducing the risk of chronic disease and promoting whole body wellness), I began eating more intuitively and started filling my bowls with homemade, unprocessed, and plant based meals. I went on to complete a post-baccalaureate in nutrition and dietetics - I suppose the rest is history!
Q. We know that you love the farmers market and source most of your produce there every week, but what would you say are your biggest pantry staples?
A | So much of my everyday diet is seasonally inspired – with recipes and lighter bites primarily dictated by weekly farmers market finds. That being said, my pantry is filled with bulk purchased grains, beans, and nuts that I love adding to smoothie and yogurt bowls, salads, and stews to make them a bit more substantial, nutritive, and textured! You’ll always find walnuts and hemp seeds in my freezer, and cannellini beans, quinoa, and farro in my cupboard.
Q. What are some of the biggest misconceptions about plant-based eating?
A | I think there’s a huge misconception that plant based eating (and really home-cooking in general) is cost and time prohibitive. I know it can feel almost counterculture, not joining coworkers in the lunchtime fast casual rush, but with those options (in the Washington, DC area) lingering around the 10$/meal price point, those dollars can really add up. My biggest suggestion for those on a monetary and time budget, especially for those young professionals and college students, is big batch, make ahead, cooking – investing in airtight glass Tupperware and preparing a workweeks worth of meals on a Sunday evening. I always suggest making one big multi-serving pot (or casserole) of something wonderful, like a minestrone soup, chunky tomato chili, or curry, pre-dividing it into your Tupperware portions, and keeping those handy in your refrigerator or freezer for grab-and-go convenience. This concept can also be applied to breakfast preparations – think pre-prepared jars of overnight oats, chia seed puddings, or trail mixes. Additionally, I always suggest shopping for produce seasonally, purchasing favorite nonperishables, like grains, nuts, and beans, from the bulk section, utilizing canned options, and purchasing frozen produce when they’re not in season to save the most at the register.
Q. What is one kitchen tool you can’t live without?
A | My blender, 100%! About four years ago I took the dive and purchased a Vitamix – I use it everyday (for smoothies, yogurts, soups, dressings, nut butters, etc.).
Q. Name your top 3 restaurants in DC and what you love to order from them.
A | My husband Andrew and I both love The Red Hen– we celebrate every special occasion and milestone at their table. Their menu is constantly evolving with the seasons; I love ordering one of their handmade pasta dishes, piled high with whatever vegetables they have handy.
I’m completely smitten by the simplicity and intimacy of Etto – year round, I tend to order their roasted cauliflower pizza sans anchovy (think cauliflower, tomatoes, capers, pine nuts, and breadcrumbs on a house-milled flour, slightly nutty, slightly sour, totally divine crust). This summer they’ve been offering a pizza with green tomatoes – that’s been my go-to.
I’m not sure if this qualifies as a restaurant, but I just love Big Bear – Andrew and I love sitting out on their patio, especially on early spring and autumn weekends, with our pup Rooster Lou, just sipping coffee, munching on their vegan friendly chocolate chip cookies, and enjoying their wonderfully cozy space and community vibe.
Thank you so much, Alexandra, for taking the time!
H E A R T + T A B L E