Since I had such a great experience participating in Lean Green Bean’s Foodie Pen Pal program, I jumped at the opportunity to participate again this month, further connect with other food-obsessed individuals, and try some new (hopefullly tasty) treats. April did not disappoint.
I was paired with a total sweetheart named Shreya M. Here’s a little bit of what she told me about herself:
I am not a blogger but like reading them. I am an electrical engineer by profession. I like adventure sports, and like running. I have done 2 half marathons and 1 marathon (all this year). I am hoping to do a half iron man in October. Hopefully an ironman next yer. We will see about that.
I love to travel. I haven’t traveled a lot but have visited France, Costa Rica, and Toronto. I am from Mumbai, India and live in a Houston suburb (Sugar Land) now. I went to School at Syracuse University and of course bleed orange.
Just the mere thought of two-half marathons and a marathon in the same year makes me sleepy and my IT band ache. Iron m(e)n? THUD <– The sound of me collapsing in disbelief.
Not only did her athletic feats leave me in awe, her very, very generous pen pal package left me with a very, very happy tummy.
Apple Banana Crisps: Dehydrated strawberries and bananas. It tasted a bit like space ice cream which made me nostalgic for grade school planetarium field trips. I could imagine these tasting great slightly reconstituted in cereal.
Artisana 100% Organic Raw Walnut Butter: I was so excited to receive the walnut butter. Last year, I unsuccessfully searched far and wide for walnut butter and, when I couldn’t find it, I ventured into the world of homemade nut butters and made it myself. The concoction from my kitchen was good, albeit heavy. With the addition of the cashews, Artisana’s blend was a bit lighter and very delicious. I ate it on a baked sweet potato.
Apricot Green Tea Gummy Pandas: These are so good. I chilled these in the refrigerator to give them a little more bite. Kurt really liked these.
Banana Walnut Bites: Remember last week when I admitted to eating an obscene quantity of walnuts? No? Ok, I probably wouldn’t remember either. Well, anyways, I failed to mention that said walnuts were these amazing banana walnut bites. They are flavored with real banana so there’s none of that awkward fauxnana flavor. I ate them by themselves but next time I buy a bag you can bet that they will find themselves atop oatmeal and, if I get bit by the baking bug, inside a cookie.
Hail Merry Raw Vegan Gluten-free Macaroons: In my very humble opinion, coconuts were made for chocolate. These macaroons were not too sweet and very much yummy.
Picky Bars (Smooth Caffeinator & Lauren’s Mega Nuts) and Orange Peel in Dark Chocolate: Admittedly, I only tried the Smooth Caffeinator Picky Bar. Call me a sucker for Sade references, coffee and hazelnuts.
Fredericksburg Farms Peach Salsa (and a sincere apology): This salsa is homegrown on a farm in my pen pal Shreya’s home state of Texas. Am I the only one who is imagining a “salsa tree.” (Yerp.) Regretfully, I haven’t yet tried it for no particular reason because I love salsa. In fact, I am no stranger to poor man’s gazpacho (salsa + spoon). I promise to try this soon and report back.
Shreya, thank you so much for so many great treats, and best of luck with the Iron M(e)n training.