A special guest post by Crystal Plew; I first met Crystal at a gathering at a friend of a friends house. She is well spoken and passionate about her cause, I am very happy to have her here sharing a little about her company, Amazi. Crystal is also a vegetarian and gluten free and has included some of her favorite recipes. Make sure to check out her website
and follow Amazi on twitter
Of the 66 billion plastic water bottles consumed annually in the United States, only 13% of them are recycled. Dozens of cities, hundreds of campuses, and even more businesses and retailers are installing water refill stations and even banning the sale of bottled water. This trend continues to show tremendous growth, however there’s currently no effective way to find these locations.
The devastating impact this has on the environment and our health has steadily increased the sale of eco-friendly containers. More than 90% of Americans own reusable bottles, yet the accessibility of bottled water—and the uncertainty regarding municipal water quality—allow it to prevail.
That’s why I created Amazi.
Amazi is a location-based app and website that makes it easy to find clean water from fountains, faucets, and filtered water dispensers – at businesses, grocery stores, campuses, parks and streams – to fill reusable bottles. We also provide data on the municipal water supply so users can make informed decisions regarding the quality of their water, therefore reducing their consumption of bottled water. Our goal is to make filling reusable bottles as easy as buying a new one.
Amazi means ‘water’ in Rwanda and we will also be donating a portion of our profits to clean water and environmental initiatives around the world.
When I am not building Amazi, I like to consider myself a amateur photographer and a professional wanderer. Some of my favorite places to visit and shoot are Montana, Kaua’i, Australia, and my hometown / family’s backyard on Tiscornia Beach in St. Joseph, MI.
I am also a vegetarian – almost a vegan, but I can’t seem to give up organic cheeses! I have been meat free for 18 years and very big into health, wellness, Ayurveda and spirituality. But my biggest motivator next to my personal health, is the health of Mother Earth and I hope that Amazi makes a lasting impact with our delicate eco-system and environment. I love to tell everyone to “Ditch the Plastic” and “Refill Happy!”
We are still in development but you can sign up at www.amazi.co for updates and invites to test our Beta when it launches soon.
I also love to cook – here are a couple of my favorite vegetarian and gluten free recipes for Fall:
Dive into this comfort food bowl. This vegan meal is delicious served as a hearty lunch or delicious healthy dinner. Gluten free as well!
Pumpkin-Pistachio Kale Fried Rice Bowl with Maple Tofu Cubes
vegan, serves 2
1 3/4 cups cooked brown rice
3 Tbsp raw pistachios
1 small sweet onion, chopped
1 1/2 cups organic kale, chopped (thick stems removed)
1 medium juicy orange (squeeze one half, slice off a strip of rind – and peel and dice the second half)
4 Tbsp pumpkin puree
1/8 tsp salt (or to taste)
1/8 tsp fine black pepper
pinch of cayenne or turmeric
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2-3 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp maple syrup
1 cup tofu cubes, firm
Start off by heating 1-2 tsp of oil in a skillet over high heat. Add the chopped onion and saute for 1-2 minutes. Add the pistachio nuts and saute for another minutes until they toast a bit in the hot oil.
Add in another 1/2-1 tsp of oil and add your rice, pumpkin, salt, pepper, orange rind, optional garlic and any additional spices you’d like to add. Toss and saute so that the pumpkin distributes through the rice as it sizzles and softens.
Add in the fresh orange juice from the orange to hydrate the pan and ingredients. Saute until the liquid absorbs. The scoop all the rice to one side of the pan in a thick mound. In the empty space in the pan add a 1/2 tsp of oil (if the pan is bone dry) and the tofu cubes. Drizzle the maple syrup over the tofu cubes and add a pinch of salt and pepper to the cubes too. Saute, still on high heat until the edges blacken. Add the diced orange and toss all the tofu cubes with the rice in one final minute of saute.
Remove the orange rind, and serve your hot rice and tofu dish.
2 cups quinoa
2 cups chopped kale (thick stems removed)
4 Tbsp slivered almonds
4 Tbsp dried cranberries
3 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 Tbsp hemp hearts
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
In a large bowl, massage your kale with a bit of olive oil and a pinch of salt until it softens. Cook your quinoa per package directions. Drain, and pour over the chopped kale, allowing the residual heat to cook the kale just slightly.
Add all the remaining ingredients, and toss to combine. Check the seasoning, adding more salt, pepper, apple cider vinegar, or even a squeeze of lemon juice to balance the flavors. If you’ve got fresh herbs on hand, chop a handful and add those to the mix too.
Serve with lemon wedges, avocado slices, and hemp hearts if desired.
I hope everyone enjoys these wonderful recipes and don’t forget to check Crystal out at Amazi.co and use a reusable bottle!