Sunday was the first actual day of FNCE. The conferences go on for 3 days (Sunday, Monday & Tuesday). The first lecture was at 8am, so I woke up early to get ready and head out. The walk from my hotel to the conference center was about 8-10 blocks, and I asked my hotel if there was somewhere to get breakfast on the way, they suggested Caribou Coffee. I thought the options would be similar to Starbucks, but all they had were pastries. So I walked out and figured I would find something on my way! I saw a 7 Eleven, and decided it was probably one of my only choices, so I went in.
I was pleased to see lots of fresh fruits and vegetables. By the checkout they also had whole apples and bananas. Then I spotted some hard-boiled eggs!
I was pleased with my overall healthy breakfast choice from 7 Eleven: 2 hard-boiled eggs, yogurt parfait, and a banana.
The yogurt parfait had real blueberries and strawberries in it, the yogurt was vanilla flavored (they didn’t have any plain) and there was a little granola on top. It clocked in at 210 calories, 3 grams fat, 1 gram saturated fat, 5 grams fiber, 27 grams sugar, 7 grams of protein and 25% calcium. Not bad for a prepackaged parfait. With the yogurt I had 1 whole hard-boiled egg and 1 egg white. Afterwards, I was full so I saved my banana for mid-morning which I enjoyed between sessions.
I first went to a session on Organics which was quite interesting, and then on to a session about Prebiotics and Probiotics. After the two sessions, I went to the NE booth to help market our fantastic DPG. I stayed there until my stomach was growling, at which point I headed to the Expo for lunch!! Since there are so many food samples you can make a meal out of it. In past years I had lunch first and then went, and didn’t have room to try much. Amy’s had delicious pizzas plus mac & cheese and tamales. I tried a few types of new healthier chips, some soups & chili, cheese, strawberries, and kiwis. Lean Cuisine had a lot of food to sample – 2 types of their frozen dinners in addition to Bertolli ravioli, so I had a plate of their food too. I ended with an oatmeal cookie made with Promise spread. Overall I covered all my basis – had some fruits & vegetables, lean protein and whole grains. There was a lot of delicious food to sample, and I was very full by the time I walked out of the expo!
The afternoon session I attended was called “Child Care Provider’s Role in Preventing Obesity.” I loved this session! It’s not an area I work on, but I do love kids and was interested in hearing what the experts had to say. This session ended at 4:30 and then I went to on of our NE (Nutrition Entrepreneurs) meeting about Private Practice. A cool thing about NE is that they have 6 specialty groups since people in the group work in many different areas. The groups are: private practice, authors, speakers, coaches, corporate health & internet/business technology. The private practice meeting was very inspiring. At this point my roommate, Pam and I went back to our hotel to get in more comfortable clothes and head to dinner.
We went to a restaurant called: Vesta Dipping Grill, which was recommended by a local herself. All the food comes with 3 dipping sauces, sounded like a fun concept! I actually wasn’t starving by the time we got there, I guess I ate more at the expo than I realized?! I decided to order 2 appetizers when the waiter told me the entrees were “generously sized.”
First, they put delicious bread on the table with roasted garlic! Yum – I had 1 slice.
Then the waiter gave us an amuse bouche: southwestern soup
It was about the size of a shot glass, delicious way to start the meal.
For my 1st appetizer I ordered: Red and Yellow Beets with humboldt fog goat cheese, sage tempura, candied walnuts, and pumpkin vinaigrette.
This was amazing! Beets and goat cheese are two of my favorite foods, but the quality of the goat cheese put it above most I’ve had and the beets were roasted to perfection. Definitely goes down as one of my favorite beet & goat cheese salads!
Next up: Golden Ponzu Shrimp with soy butter, jalapeno ponzu and sambal (the 3 dipping sauces).
I was a surprised when this dish came out deep-fried! But it was my fault since I didn’t ask – something I tell all my clients to do. But after the first bite, I wasn’t really disappointed. It was incredibly delicious. If I had known it was fried, I wouldn’t have ordered a salad with cheese since both are high in fat – but once in a while it’s no big deal. I ate every bite of both appetizers and enjoyed the dinner immensely.
My friend Pam ordered: coconut masala grilled tofu steak with pistachio-apricot rice, roasted-tomato spinach salad (I’m not sure which sauces she got). But here’s a photo:
She loved it – and said she had never had a “tofu steak” before!
All in all it was a great day. We crashed that evening, and knew we had another big one ahead of us.
- Even when you are confident that you know how a restaurant dish is prepared – still ask!
- Just say “can you describe how this dish is prepared?”
- Then there will be no mistakes of what you will get.