True Food Kitchen's new Spring menu items include the latest and greatest spring produce, while also being allergy-friendly with gluten free and vegan options.
I'm a big fan of True Food Kitchen. I eat there a decent amount, but somehow have never gotten around to putting a full review on Tasting Page. When I eat at True Food, I'm usually catching up with friends where I want to focus on them and not snapping photos of every vegetable, sauce and drink that hits the table. Yes friends, I do know how annoying I can be on dinner dates :-) Luckily, I was recently invited to sample True Food Kitchen's new Spring menu with some fellow food bloggers, so all niceties were pushed aside for a meal all about the food.
I often visit the True Food Kitchen in Santa Monica, off the Promenade, but not long ago, they opened a new branch in El Segundo's shopping plaza, The Point. True Food is actually in 11 states across the country now, so hopefully there's one near you. The El Segundo True Food has a nice covered patio with heat lamps, and a spacious light and bright interior.
What I like about True Food Kitchen is, well, the food of course. They're using healthy, seasonal ingredients that rotate with the crops that are freshest - my favorite way to eat! There's a lot of organic, gluten free, vegan and vegetarian options. In fact, the majority of their menu can be adapted to your dietary needs and preferences. Just ask!
We got to sample some of the new menu items that are actually going live in True Food Kitchen's as we speak. For starters, there's a torched avocado that left me wondering a) why on earth don't I have a torch in my kitchen and b) why on earth am I not torching my avocados everyday. You get some nice smokiness with the charring of the avocado and then the talented Chef Jordan combines it with cucumber noodles, mushrooms, snap peas, watermelon radishes and a lovely turmeric ponzu. It makes me want to upgrade my edamame zoodles and eat this all day long.
I thought that could be my new favorite salad, until I had the spring seasonal salad. This salad rotates with this seasons and has developed quite a following. Yes, vegetables can have groupies too. The Spring salad line up includes asparagus, broccolini and cauliflower, all lightly grilled with just a little oil and salt and pepper. Good ingredients need little manipulation. Those veggies are tossed with romaine, chickpeas, pistachio, raisin, manchego and a zesty sicilian vinaigrette. Yeah, so now I want that salad every day for lunch. You can hold the Manchego shavings on top.
The first salad was paired with a Crossings Sauvignon Blanc from the Marlboro region of New Zealand. The grapefruit notes made it light and refreshing and the little jalapeno flavor at the end gave it added zip. An Edna Valley Tangent Pinot Grigio went beautifully with the seasonal salad, but would actually work with many of the other dishes. Both whites were nice, citrusy "patio wines" and hence make for great sipping with most of the low carb, low acid dishes on True Food's menu. Most of the wine on True Food's menu is organic, sustainable and some are even biodynamic. Yet another reason to love True Food.
Content with my salads, I barely needed more, but we still had the main event of pan roasted chicken. What's wonderful is the way Chef Jordan cooks the chicken. He pounds it thin and then uses a weight to cook it on the grill so that a natural, golden crust forms without the need for any breading. Hooray for that. The chicken was paired with roasted broccolini, heirloom potatoes and a punchy chermoula. You're going to want a spoon for that sauce. I also loved the Panther Creek Fox Block Eleven Pinot Noir for its more assertive, earthy notes.
I'm not usually a flan fan. First I don't want the dairy, and second, the texture just doesn't work for me. True Food Kitchen has the ultimate allergy friendly dessert with their vegan, gluten free flan. It's make with coconut and chia seeds so the mixture is creamy and luscious, and then there's a ridiculous vegan caramel sauce. Seriously folks, you won't know it's vegan, but you will wonder if it's obscene to order a second one.
I'm thrilled to report True Food Kitchen's Spring menu is quite the success, whether your gluten free, vegan or not. They're using fresh ingredients, cooked in a way that allows the flavors to shine. You're going to want to check out the new menu items while they last.
True Food Kitchen
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I was a guest of True Food Kitchen, but all opinions are always my own.
Food photos are courtesy of True Food Kitchen.