WORDS BY LAUREN LEVINGER
Honey Hi is Echo Park's favorite health-foodie destination. Serving up flavorful grain bowls, mermaid-hued spirulina and chlorella mint-smoothies, bone broths, and other feel-good foods. The unassuming cafe is owned and operated by best friends, Kacie & Caitlin, who you are likely to see when you visit, running around in perfectly coordinating Levis and vintage t-shirt combinations.
The two met while attending college in Colorado, and both went on to work at high stress jobs, Caitlin as a stylist in New York, and Kacie as a producer in advertising. When they both decided to pursue more balanced lives, food was one of the main vehicles they used to recalibrate. Finding that changing the way they ate, was the best method to taking care of themselves.
The new kid on Sunset strip's block, sits just down the street from the iconic Dodger Stadium, and has become a hamlet for the neighborhood's creative set.
The cafe's menu doesn't adhere to strict dietary philosophies, but is rather, driven by an overall focus on clean and local ingredients. The co-owners are mostly self taught, although Kacie is a licensed nutritionist, and have created a haven for those looking for delicious, wholesome, and clean eating at an accessible price-point.
1620 Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90026
1) ZOODLES, MARINARA & TURKEY MEATBALLS
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 large red onion, minced
1/4 cup fresh basil, minced
1 cup baby spinach, minced
1 lb ground turkey
2 tsp salt
2 tsp italian herbs seasoning
1/4 tsp black pepper
mince garlic cloves, red onion, fresh basil and spinach. in a medium bowl, mix 1 lb of
ground turkey, minced garlic/onion spinach mix, egg, salt, black pepper with hands. roll into golf- ball sized balls and bake in the oven at 350 for 20 minutes until internal temp reaches 165. meanwhile, make the sauce:
1 tbsp olive oil
3 minced garlic cloves
1/2 sliced red onion
1 large carrot, shredded
1 tbsp dried italian herbs
1 cup spinach
1/4 cup fresh basil, torn
1 can chopped tomatoes or canned marinara sauce (no sugar added!)
heat olive oil and 3 minced garlic in a pot over medium heat until fragtant. add sliced red onion, shredded carrots and dried italian herbs mix. sauté 1 minute on medium heat until fragrant and soft. add marinara sauce and simmer for 10 minutes. add basil and spinach, mix into hot marinara sauce, and turn off the heat allowing spinach to wilt. serve over meatballs and pasta, garnish with fresh basil.
brown rice pasta: prepare in a separate pot by boiling in 3 cups of salted water and draining. zucchini noodles: cut zucchinis in half and spiralize into noodles.
2) GREENIE SMOOTHIE
1.5 frozen banana
8 oz milk of choice- we love sugar free coconut/almond milk or yogurt 1 cup fresh baby spinach
8 almonds or 1 tbsp sugar-free peanut butter
4 mint leaves
sprinkle of cinnamon
blend in a blender until smooth!
3) BLACK MAGIC SOUP 1 large onion diced
3 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 large poblano pepper chopped
1/2-1 cup green chiles (canned is fine)
3-4 chipotles in adobo sauce (canned) more can be added later if you like it hotter
1 tbsp olive oil for sweating
2 Tbsp mexican dry oregano, divided
2 Tbsp ground cumin, divided
32 oz water or vegetable stock (plus more at blending time)
12 oz diced tomatoes or whole and just smash em up (this all gets pureed at the end)
4 cups soaked and cooked black beans (soak ahead of time) then the soup is quick to make juice of 2 fresh limes
chopped fresh cilantro
Sweat first 5 ingredients in a heavy clad bottom stainless soup pot with enough oil to coat. When starting to soften add 1 each tbsp oregano, cumin and a tsp of salt then add stock. Bring to a boil.
Add beans and tomatoes and simmer for at least 1/2 hour stirring occasionally, adding extra stock if necessary. Add the rest of the oregano, cumin and salt. Stir, turn off and allow to somewhat cool before blending. Add soup to blender and puree until smooth. Add lime juice and some chopped cilantro, adjust seasonings to taste. Top with chopped cilantro, lime wedges, cheddar cheese or sour cream to finish.