Thursday, December 27, 2012

Food for Thought: The REAL Jewel of the Florida Keys


Life has been pretty wacky for us this month, so I haven't felt compelled or inspired to write much on this blog.  But today I decided I would tell you about my absolutely favorite place to eat and shop in our little island town.  If you are ever traveling through the Florida Keys, you MUST stop in to Food for Thought health food store in Marathon, Florida.  Here's why:


Food for Thought, located at 5800 Overseas Highway in Marathon, FL, has been operating as a health food store and book store for years, bouncing between various owners.  It has been the ONLY health food store in a 40 mile radius so it has always held a special place in my heart, especially when I switched to a gluten free diet in 2002.


But Food for Thought turned a huge corner a few years ago when owner Ellin (isn't she adorable?) decided to overhaul the store and install a totally organic, gluten free, vegan food and juice bar in the back of the store.

By knocking out a wall and removing a few rows of books, Ellin revolutionized healthy eating on our island.  The stand, which is open every day for breakfast, lunch and early dinner, offers a great variety of fresh squeezed fruit and veggie juices, smoothies, baked goods, salads and hot meals.  The daily specials vary widely from raw zucchini pad thai to spicy sweet potato gumbo.  Everything is vegan, gluten free, organic, mostly raw, and ALWAYS delicious.

Our family loves this place so much, we eat and shop here about four days a week.  And my sister (pictured above) works part time in the stand.  


In addition to eating and shopping for gluten free/vegan awesomness, I also find much of my culinary inspiration on these cookbook shelves.  There is an entire wall dedicated to healthy cooking so each day that I'm waiting for my juice to be made, I flick through a new cookbook to get my wheels cranking on creative meal planning later in the week.

 
If you haven't been to the Florida Keys before, then you might not be aware that 99% of all restaurants in the 100 mile-long chain of islands offers the same fare: amazing fresh seafood.  Which is great.  If you like seafood.  But for those that are on a plant-based diet, the food options are beyond limited.  

That's why we seek refuge in health food stores like Food for Thought, where we can get a fresh squeezed carrot juice and a slice of gluten free pumpkin pie.  Goosey LOVES Food for Thought.  Well, specifically the pumpkin pie.

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