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Little Red and I were invited to check out the Center for Healthy Lifestyle in Solana Beach, California. It’s a very cool, cottage house with an organic garden next to Boys and Girls Clubs of San Dieguito. Chickens, a bunny, cooking classes for both Mama Maggie and Little Red. Fun! Fun! Fun for everyone. Here’s a synopsis of our day at the Center.
They gave Little Red a magnifying glass which he slept with later that night. He went on a scavenger hunt for fruits and veggies in their organic garden. He picked corn, apples, a gigantic cabbage, parsley, beans, berries, and more. We ate the corn raw. It was so sweet. In one bite, all my childhood memories of being on my family’s ranch in Mexico and picking corn and apples came flooding back to me.
After the kids gathered up all the fresh goodies, they went to sit in the expansive, open kitchen. (Mama Maggie wants a kitchen like this). They made hummus with Amanda “Curry” Mascia. She’s has such a lively personality. She had the kids engrossed in what she was talking about. Then the kids were left to run around the garden to chase chickens and pick more berries while we (the adults) were given a vegan cooking class.
As a food writer and recipe developer, I was completely blown away by this next dish: Vegan caprese. Instead of mozzarella, Chef Matthew Purnell blended macadamia nuts with hemp seeds and lemon to create a faux cheese. The texture was so similar to cheese that your palate would have easily been fooled. Chef Purnell used flavorful heirloom tomatoes and wonderfully aromatic basil. I need this recipe!
Our next class was by Alison Caldwell who made Organic Chicken Lettuce Wraps. She was very informative on GMO and organic foods. I loved what she said about organic food, “I completely trust organic.” Me too! She also gave us a very useful tip on how to separate iceberg lettuce. I’ll have to do a tutorial on that some day. It was just too brilliant. And, of course, the lettuce wraps were delish! Read more on her blog: FairFoodForAll.com
We rallied up the kiddos one last time to make vegan donuts. No, that’s not a typo. Vegan donuts and baked too! Love healthy (or less sinful) desserts. Liz Gary made them in a Baby Cakes, an electric donut maker. The smell of baking donuts is intoxicating. Covered with chocolate and peanuts and coconut. Drooooooling! My only complaint is that they were too small.
By the end of the day, Little Red was all hyped up, chasing and climbing with the other kids. Overall, it was a lot of fun. I’m seriously considering having Little Red’s next birthday party there. Call them for more birthday party details. I also need to go to more of their cooking classes.
Contact Information for the Center of Healthy Lifestyle:
For more information, check out their website: CLICK HERE
Cooking classes info: CLICK HERE
Facebook: CLICK HERE
Or Call: 858-436-7502