Club & Greek

Monmouth Area Vegetarian Society Hosts Potluck

The Monmouth Area Vegetarian Society (MAVS) hosted a free fall-inspired vegan potluck with featured speaker, Alex Mazzucca, co-owner of From Seed to Sprout, in the Magill Commons Club Dining Room on Sunday, Oct. 20 from 1 – 3 pm.

The event was set around the idea of what foods could keep one healthy through the rough winter. Mazzucca opened the discussion with highlighting her organic, vegan restaurant in Avon, New Jersey. “We don’t focus on fake meat but instead try to focus on our nuts, seeds, vegetables, and grains. We change with the seasons. We like to keep it fresh,” Mazzucca said.

According to Mazzucca, the seasonal changes are necessary as one’s immune system also changes with the weather. “Anytime there is a changing of the season, it’s a major shift for your body. The biggest problem comes when your body fries up on the inside, the real key is to keep your body hydrated on the inside,” she said.

Mazzucca mentioned that garlic and ginger are powerful remedies for inflammatory issues while cayenne pepper helps open up your nasal passages. She brought a liquid combination of these elements to the event for guests to try.

Junior communication major, Becca Zidik, was considered “one brave soul” by people attending the event for wanting to try the cold relief concoction. “At first, the shot was very spicy and bitter but after the initial shock of heat, it was so beneficial! My sinuses cleared up within in minutes and I felt energized,” Zidik said.

The spiciness of the mixture was from the cayenne pepper, an ingredient Mazzucca strongly suggests to become part of your daily food intake. “We recommend everyone starts their day with hot water, cayenne pepper, and lemon juice,” Mazzucca said. “The cayenne pepper will loosen everything up while the lemon juice will keep your blood sugar balanced throughout the day.”

Most of the guests were anxiously touching their pens to paper trying to write every word Mazzucca spoke from recipes to just helpful tips such as hemp seeds for protein. Noticing this was the case, Mazzucca made sure to have a question and answer session prior to leaving the spotlight.

During this segment, she passed out winter pantry and recipe guides which included a winter smoothie and a quinoa poridge recipe.

“The essential message of the speech was to eat clean while getting the right nutrition in order to be healthy,” Zidik said. “I liked hearing how to actually prepare the foods. My mom has so many of the spices at home, so it was nice to report back to her about how to use each spice.”

Throughout the speech, guests were allowed to enjoy the vegan buffet which included, but were not limited to peppermint bark, potato salad, and grape leaves. Public relations professor Mary Harris, who helped coordinate the event, asked for all those who brought food to include a recipe card underneath their dish in case other guests wanted to make it one day.

“My favorite part was trying all the different food. I’m not a vegan or vegetarian at all but I absolutely love veggies and really enjoy trying new food,” senior communication major Kristi Silver said.

Before everyone left for the day, Harris made sure to announce MAVS will host their next event on Sunday, Nov. 17 and invites anyone to attend. “We are a very inviting group. We try to encourage people from all different walks of life to come enjoy really healthy food,” Harris said. The event will also include a potluck buffet as well as a guest speaker from the Farm Animal Sanctuary.