Health food doesn’t have to be bland or boring, heck, it can be as innovative as any other culinary endeavor.
Chef Brookes Natural Cafe in Fort Myers has been trying to tow that line and provide fresh natural ingredients in intriguing forms. After being around for something like nine years I think she would have the formula down just right.
This is all the healthy stuff. Stuff that I don’t eat. That I should. That you should probably eat.
I started with an appetizer with hummus, quinoa, and tabbouleh, which is served with blue corn chips. From the first scoop, I could tell this food has elements that are invigorating and unprocessed. The vegetables in the tabbouleh, including tomato and red onion, add a crunchy rigidity to the silky smooth hummus. The quinoa is cooked perfectly, not too grainy or so overcooked that it’s complete mush.
The blue corn chips gave a saltiness and needed solid texture to really bring this dish to the stratosphere. It was something I would come back to eat.
Second on the list was one of Brookes’s soups of the day: pinto beans and rice. More like a stew, this dish had an earthy gravy-like broth from the beans. Carrots, onions, and some broccoli could be seen in the mix as well. The brown rice sort of took on a porridge-like consistency that happens if a grain is left too long in a liquid. It didn’t really distract me from the overall dish because I still enjoyed the spices and ingredient choices.
After finishing, the food left me feeling nourished, which is new ground for me because I am always hungry.
Have I turned over a new leaf? (no pun intended). Doubtful.
Someone pass the macaroni and cheese.