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As usual, life as a single mom has been wonderfully hectic. Yesterday I started a new job, training as a wellness specialist for an amazing company, MOM's Organic Market. They currently have 16 stores open in the North-East, and are preparing to open up a new store right in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia. If you have one nearby, I definitely recommend checking it out, and I'm not saying that as an employee, but as someone who's been a devoted customer for the past 2 years. Not only do they sell only 100% certified organic produce, but they are a company sincerely committed to a cause. Their mission statement is to "protect and restore the environment," and they truly work toward this goal in everything that they do.
Not only do they have the largest selection of vegan foods, and products that I've ever seen in one place, but their prices are amazing, and there are sales, even on produce, constantly. They have a wonderful vegan café, Naked Lunch, where you can get 100% organic salads, steam bowls, soups, fresh pressed veggie juices, and even kombucha by the growler-full. It really is an amazing grocery store that you just can't help but fall in love with.
Not only have I been busy with my new job, but today was my daughter's very first day of pre-k. Which, I'm totally going to admit, I absolutely was "that mom" at drop off this morning, crying as I left while my daughter was completely content, playing with the other kids. After being a stay at home mom for 4 and half years, this is definitely an adjustment.
Part of that adjustment is figuring out how to eat well, and maintain a healthy diet for my daughter and I. Meal planning around a busy schedule is something which I've never had to do, and now is absolutely vital in keeping with a healthy, whole food diet. I had tried meal planning before, but it honestly just felt like more of a hassle with our extremely loose schedule. I definitely think that meal planning can be a great tool for people who are new to whole food, plant based diets, and can absolutely make the transition easier. For people who have been living this lifestyle, and eating this way for many years it definitely seems like something that may be less necessary. But again, now that I'm in a period of transition, I absolutely think it's time for me to utilize this tool. As I think we all know that raising kids is a difficult task all on it's own, and raising a child, especially one in school, on a vegan diet can definitely be a little tricky.
Right now I'm trying to stick with extremely simple, nutritious, but flavorful meals that are completely satisfying. This salad definitely fits the bill.
You can either eat this just as a salad, or you can throw it between some bread, and instead of salsa just use a couple fresh slices of tomato, and any other veggies you like, for a filling, healthy sandwich. It's loaded with protein, fiber, and good, heart healthy fats. You're not only getting protein from the obvious source, chickpeas, but avocados are loaded with protein as well. So this meal is great for kids, who we all know are especially active. The best part is how simple this is to make, and you can even use this as a dip for chips! This recipe has just 4 main ingredients, and takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. You can make it one of two ways; if you prefer a smoother, more creamy texture then you can easily make this in a food processor. If you're like me, and enjoy your chickpeas a little more chunky, and whole then you can just mash everything up with a fork.
1 serving as a salad, or 2 servings made into sandwiches
- 1 15oz package, or canned Chickpeas
- 1 medium sized Avocado
- 1 small Lemon
- Salt to taste
- fresh Pico de Gallo, Salsa, or sliced Tomato
- Mash your chickpeas with a fork.
- Slice avocado lengthwise, scoop out contents of both halves, and mash into your chickpeas along with the juice squeezed from your lemon.
- Add salt to taste
- Top with pico de gallo, salsa, or freshly diced tomatoes.
*If you prefer a creamier salad, or you want to make this as a dip for chips, just throw everything except for your tomatoes into a food processor, and process until smooth.