Wednesday, July 7, 2021

Get A Good Meal To-Go From Aratham Gourmet To Go

Have you ever thought about going plant-based or wondered what you would miss the most if you decided to change your diet? A lot of people assume that when you go meat and dairy-free you miss eating cheese or crave a burger every once in a while, but I'm here to report that these thoughts have never even crossed my mind. Instead, I have found that the most "difficult" part of going plant-based is finding easy access to ready-to-eat meals that aren't fried or made mostly of faux meat substitutes. If you are looking for a great plant-based burger, Chilli Mustard Onions has perfected it. If your craving "Taco Bell-like" staples, Street Beet can make you a better version using fresh plant-based ingredients. And if you want mozzarella sticks, Nosh Pit has got you covered. But, if you want a healthy(ish) meal that wasn't flash frozen and shipped into your local grocery market, there aren't a lot of options. In fact, it's hard to even find a good vegan salad that will fill you up. This means I have to pre-plan and pre-pack a lot of my meals and if you had to cook a lot more during the last eighteen months (aka COVID) you know how stressful planning, prepping, and preparing everything you eat seven days a week can be. Traditionally, I have reverted to eating a lot of baked potatoes, but even I have my potato limit. So, I was on the hunt for something new when I heard about Aratham Gourmet To Go, a new health food restaurant in Troy, Michigan that specializes in organic plant-based meals. I stopped in, introduced myself to the owners Gabriel and Tiffany, and they explained what Aratham was all about.

Aratham has a new approach to eating healthy on the go. They are the missing puzzle piece that I have been looking for ever since I went plant-based because they offer a lot of good options to fit my needs/diet/week. You can order ahead and get fresh meals delivered directly to your door, you can pop in and grab one or more pre-packaged meals to get you through the day/week, or you can choose your own portions by ordering by the pound/item from their fresh deli counter. All of their food is made in-house from scratch, this includes their unique "meats" and "cheeses". Their kitchen is CLEAN (they let me in unannounced) and they use the highest quality ingredients on the market. They also have extensive experience leading some of the best kitchens in the world, so they know how to create flavors that I haven't seen other people be able to get from plants. Plus, they are friendly, knowledgeable, and passionate about making good food that is good for you, which makes picking out what you want even more difficult because everything looks, smells, and sounds good when they describe it to you.

For my first foray into plant-based to-go I picked up about a half a week's worth of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners to eat throughout the day when I didn't have time to/didn't feel like cooking or needed something on the go. I saw these meals as filler meals, not the main acts - but I was wrong. I figured anything that had to be heated/reheated would never be that good, but I couldn't have been more off base. It turns out that when a chef with 20+ years in the kitchen creates a to-go concept they think about everything, including how it will taste reheated. Every to-go meal from Aratham comes with clear instructions on how to reheat or prepare the food and if you follow them I can guarantee that you will be blown away with how fresh and delicious everything tastes, even after it hits the microwave or toaster oven. There was not a dud in the bunch. I would never order pasta, especially knowing I would have to reheat it, but the "meat" inside the bolognese was so delicious that I already went back and bought a second (and third) serving. They even have a good and filling to-go vegan salad that has "feta cheese" on top! It was nice to have a few breakfast, lunch, and dinner options to grab whenever I needed them, especially because they were better than anything I was going to make myself. I have already been back for a second visit and plan to go stock up again tomorrow. I can't stop thinking about the mac and "cheese" and the jack fruit tacos, I hope they have more!

Aratham is currently open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Their shop is located at 3381 Rochester Road, Troy, MI 48083. They are a zero-waste company and all of their packaging is plant-based and biodegradable. They have new food daily and new menus/options monthly. They have a variety of fresh, cold-pressed, organic juices ready to go, and offer catering if you need something delicious for a party or gathering. This is the kind of restaurant that I have always dreamed of! It's worth the drive to visit, but if you can't, see if they deliver to you. You won't be disappointed! 


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