Posts tagged ‘miami lakes’

June 17, 2011

Miami Lakes’ Own Tex-Mex Haven: Cancun Grill

by ashley

by Ashley Morgan

A substantial, healthy meal is hard to come by in Miami Lakes, FL, the mecca of chain restaurants and fast food. However in the middle of this mess is an inconspicuous Tex-Mex restaurant named Cancun Grill that actually offers several vegetarian options. While I haven’t yet tried, I’m sure they would also amend some of these options to be vegan, as well.

Their triple vegetarian combination is my favorite dish here. It comes with a black bean tostada, a veggie enchilada and a spinach quesadilla, with a side of refried beans and yellow rice. It is enough food for at least two people, and at a price of just $7.00, it really is a steal. The veggie enchilada actually comes sans cheese, so it could possibly be vegan (not sure about the butter content). It is really delicious, though. Freshly cut squash and zucchini wrapped in a soft flour tortilla and topped with a tomato salsa. The vegetables seem to be marinated and then steamed fresh; they have a great fresh bite and wonderful flavor. The spinach quesadilla is actually more full of steamed spinach than cheese, with just a little bit of cheese, but I love spinach so I am more than happy with it. It’s also a nice change from the normal cheese-laden, flavorless quesadillas of chain restaurants. A toasted tortilla really makes a difference with flavor, too.

By the time I’ve tackled both the spinach quesadilla and the veggie enchilada, I’m usually too full to continue. The refried beans are good, but not much different from what I’ve tasted in other Tex-Mex establishments. The yellow rice pales in comparison with the other items on the plate. I do like the black bean tostada, but it isn’t my favorite item in the dish. It is basically two crunch-fried corn tortillas topped with a heavy serving of black beans, lettuce, tomatoes, shredded cheese and sour cream. I normally nibble on just the black beans as I’m deciding that I really should stop because my stomach feels like it’s going to explode.

While the noise level is lively, it isn’t anything overwhelming. I’ve not been here during dinner, however during lunch they do have quite a following. And that’s good – that means turnover is good, the food is fresh and they have tons of regulars.

At the moment their website is down, however Menu Pages has a good listing on them that includes their menu:

http://southflorida.menupages.com/restaurants/cancun-grill/menu

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May 20, 2011

Elevation Burger Part II

by ashley

by Ashley Morgan

I had extremely high hopes for this restaurant after the first signs were posted on its windows a few months ago. It’s located dead behind my all-time favorite fast food restaurant, Chic-Fil-A, which is how I found it. Jessica and I have been talking for so long about how we need more vegetarian lunch options in the neighborhood, and sure enough, Elevation offers two: one for vegetarians and one for vegans.

The first vegetarian patty they offer is rice-based and, according to the owner Magali Vannier, contains mozzarella cheese for flavor. Unfortunately, I couldn’t taste the mozzarella cheese and the rice made the patty a little dry. The second option is vegan, with no cheese in the patty, and is entirely vegetable-based. It is moist, yet thinner, and more abundantly seasoned. I wasn’t so sure about this place after our first visit eating the vegetarian burger, however after our vegan burger, I’m positive we’ll return.

As Jessica mentioned, they offer the choice to put any burger, including the organic grass-fed beef patties, on lettuce instead of their roll. I highly recommend this, especially with the vegan burger, as the flavor was actually much better without a hunk of bread in the way. And just as Ms. Vannier said to us the first time we met her, it certainly leaves more room for the fries.

My suggestion to Elevation Burger? VEGAN CHEESE! I actually ordered a vegan burger with cheddar and felt like it was sacrilege

The french fries here are cooked in heart-healthy olive oil, which is certainly a step up from canola oil. The only problem is that they seem to be hit and miss. With the burning point of olive oil so low, it is really difficult to get a good crisp fry without it absorbing tons of oil. The first time we visited the fries were excellent, perfectly salted and crispy. This time they fell a little short, but they weren’t incredibly greasy, just somewhat limp. Hopefully this was just an off day for them.

The ordering process here is similar to many other fast-food restaurants, you choose the patty and basic sandwich that you want, add your own toppings, and then order fries and/or a drink. You pay and then a food runner will bring the tray to you when you’re ready. There is a drink fountain as well as milkshakes available. The milkshakes were good, but incredibly rich and only one size, something I wouldn’t be able to eat more than once every month or two. It would be great if they sold kid’s sizes for the option of indulging a little more often.

Overall, this place is a great step towards healthier, vegetarian and vegan cuisine in Miami Lakes. It is certainly wonderful to have options other than salads and Asian food. While they do have a few little kinks to work out, it is a great establishment and one that I will most certainly frequent. For being open only two weeks, they have much more time ahead of them to learn and grow.

May 17, 2011

Heaven and Earth Part 1

by jem614

By Jessica Michael

Heaven and Earth Soup (really, that’s what it’s called)

Ashley and I love this place in Miami Lakes called “The Green Papaya”.  It’s a little hole-in-the-wall place that is basically the size of a small living room, most of the time it takes about 30 minutes to get your food, but it’s soooo worth it.

The broth is light and the soup itself is like a healthy bucket list of mint, cilantro, green pepper, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, onions, white noodles, palm stalks, and tofu.  They even give you extra bean sprouts, jalapeños, mint and lime on the side to add different flavors to your soup.  I can’t imagine a healthier soup and it’s twice the benefit because I can never finish a soup so they always give me containers to take it home.  The service can be slow but they are so nice that it makes up for it.  Unfortunately they aren’t open on Mondays but they are open Tuesday through Sunday.  For more information go to http://www.greenpapayasouthflorida.webs.com/.

I give this soup 5 Carrots because it’s my absolute favorite!  There you go- my first 5 Carrot Review ever!


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