I know, this is a little late, but we still don’t want to forget anything. I also need to write on Angel’s dad’s visit. We had such a good time – including making our very first garden! But back to the trip…
Day 3: A continuation of the last 2 days posts. We just don’t want to forget anything we did or ate, just in case we go back to Nashville. It really is quite an amazing town for its diversity. So today, we continue:
We had some protein at the hotel (and mind you, by protein, I mean hard boiled eggs – as it was the only thing we weren’t scared to eat) and then headed to the Parthenon. It really quite odd, having this huge Greek building in the middle of Nashville, but its definitely worth a stop. Inside is a small maze of art – both new and old and the history of the world’s fair that inspired the exhibit. It was so hot, we thought we’d get a treat, so we drove past The Gulch – a neighborhood with all locally owned shops – and onto the outskirts (or what it felt like for a visitor) into an entirely different world – I swear we drove to Seattle. And that is where we ate…
Food Stop #1: Las Paletas Gourmet Popsicles. I wish this place had a website, because it is phenomenal. They have flavors like Cucumber Chili, Hibiscus and traditional Strawberry Banana. All fresh, all organic, and they can tell you the ingredients of every single creation. The fruit and veggies in these pops are so fresh, its like eating the essence of each ingredient. It was a real treat and we will definitely go back there. Try it, you won’t be disappointed.
Food Stop #2: Burger Up. Oh goodness, this place is good. Everything here comes from local, sustainable farming and you can tell. It’s so fresh, you can truly taste each and every bite – from the homemade ketchup to the juicy bison meat. The area is also very urban chic – we had the opportunity to listen to 2 violinists playing outside on the street while admiring the décor and vibe of the restaurant inside. If you want to step out of the old Nashville and into something more artsy, go to this neighborhood and eat at this restaurant. And yes, those images on the website look exactly like what you will get…
Food Stop #3: The Frothy Monkey Coffeehouse. Small and quaint, this coffee shop is truly a locals-only type of spot. The coffee is amazing and they even have a garden out back. Yes, if you are wondering where that spinach came that tastes so good on your salad, its from about 20 feet away. The little hole in the wall smells of freshly roasted coffee and freshly made food and the message boards and news racks are full of artists, shows and local food CSA and farmer’s markets. If you like coffee or just want a place to sit and chill, this is a great little spot.
We got back in the car with my parents and decided to show Angel the Gaylord Opryland Resort, as he had never been. If you haven’t been and you are stopping by Nashville, I highly recommend it. The gardens here are stunning. There are so many different types of plants, this hotel is much like one huge greenhouse, but not humid at all. There are over 10 restaurants, activities for kids, beautiful waterfalls and shopping too. And if you are into wine, you can get a to-go glass and sip while you walk. Bring a camera that has a good macro lens, because the plants are worth it (they have orchids growing out of the trees). And yes, it does cost $20 just to park, so expect to pay extra for anything you buy here. From here, we took a nap and headed to Franklin, TN for a change of pace.
Food Stop #4: Saffire Restaurant & Bar. Again, all locally grown produce and ingredients, although a little harder to make sure we got Paleo food. The coolest part of this place is that it is placed inside of an old warehouse that they converted to an artisan artist mall. Get there early and walk around to see Amish-made furniture, handmade clothing, and more. They play jazz and blues and the atmosphere is really nice and dark – good for a date or drinks out. The shrimp on my plate was huge and cooked to perfection, as well as my broccoli (which can be easily cooked wrong). We did a little Paleo cheat for Angel’s birthday and had a cheese plate – and if you eat dairy, I would recommend it highly.
By the time we left Saffire, the night was over and it was time to leave. We woke up early and my parents dropped us off at the airport. Time to go home, clean up the house and prep for Angel’s dad to arrive. We’ve been so busy that I’ll have to catch up on that in our next post.
Today’s recipe is something that I originally created back in the day before Paleo…I used to use it for egg or spring rolls. Now that we don’t do the grains, I’ve adapted it to eat all by itself and it is delicious. If you are ambitious, core the cabbage (leave the rest whole) and add to boiling water for 30-45 minutes and use it as a wrap instead of in the salad for actual Paleo Spring rolls! As the leaves fall away, remove them from the water and set out on a baking sheet. Wrap and you’re good to go! Or just use the lettuce raw!
Paleo Asian Salad
½ cup Carrot
½ Cucumber (I like Hothouse or English, peeled)
½ head Iceberg Lettuce or Chinese Cabbage
1 Mushroom (large)
1 Green Onion
2 Garlic cloves
½ inch piece Ginger
½ tsp Fish Sauce
1 tsp Honey (or raw sugar)
1 Tbsp Coconut Aminos (or wheat-free Tamari if you do soy)
Sea Salt and Pepper (to taste)
Chop, slice, and/or shred all ingredients, mincing the garlic and ginger VERY finely. Add everything together in a large bowl and toss to coat with the fish sauce, agave, coconut aminos, sea salt and pepper.
This salad is a perfect side to our fragrant and delicious Vietnamese Steak!