It’s April (already!!)! The month of easter, crazy weather (although this year there has been no month without it) and finally some fresh veggies & fruits! Rhubarb is coming into season and asparagus also has its start – which means lots and lots lf new good food! And obviously, there are 6 favourite things for April because we can not start a month without them!
Restaurant of the month – Mae Aurel
Attention to all brunch lovers – this is a must know for you!! Mae Aurel (pronounced M-a-y not M-a-e) aka Brunch heaven is definitely one of the best restaurants in Vienna to enjoy your Sunday breakfast or brunch at (or to get your take away brunch from – they now offfer really good looking brunch boxes for delivery!)! It definitely is not your basic go-to restaurant, it is way more special, has many creative & super good dishes and everyone there is soo friendly!
It actually is a quite new restaurant in town and located in the first district, between the Danube Canal and the Hoher Markt. This means, it is very easily accessible with public transport! (Without lockdown) it actually also is really cute to sit there, both, inside and outside. Outside you sit in a cute street in the middle of Vienna and inside you are surrounded by modern and comfortable interior.
But now let’s get to the exciting part; the food! It is heaven, really! What I actually love most about it is that it is not like in most brunch places but it also has special items on the menu such as pancakes with banana & bacon. You can also enjoy a great variety of (really tasty) breads with all kind of toppings or just some good old yoghurt or pancakes.
It is not only great for brunch though, but also for lunch! Mae Aurel offers a lunch menu during the week with a changing dish every day. Obviously there also are other dishes to choose from, such as (delicious!!) salads, curries, pastas & burgers! My personal favs? I would definitely go for something you don’t get anywhere else – so either the halloumi bread (a safe choice!), the banana & bacon pancakes (I myself haven’t tried them yet, but a friend did and she really liked them!) or the Red Mae Salad!
Mae really is a restaurant you need to try if you live in Vienna! You won’t be disappointed! Delicious, many, many options, very fair prices and super friendly people! Enjoy!
Food of the month – asparagus
Asparagus actually is a very ancient food – it has already been eaten and used as a medicine by the Egyptians over 5000 years ago. It hasn’t become popular until the 16th century though. Today anyhow, it is a very popular and widely used vegetable all over the world.
It is made up of 93% water and a great source of Vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium, zinc and fibre. It has also shown to have a possible impact on blood pressure and improved digestion. Furthermore, it is rich in antioxidants, which help to protect the cells and act anti-inflammatory.
The way it is eaten depends on where you are in the world. In the asian cuisine it is often added to stir-fries or curries, in the US it is often eaten with some sort of chicken of beef. In Europe it is often found in risotto or pasta or as a side. In Austria, it is very typically eaten with boiled potatoes, ham and either butter and parmesan cheese or sauce hollandaise. Asparagus definitely is a staple in Austrian Cuisine every spring.
Recipe of the month – healthyish double chocolate salted caramel brownies
These are even better than they sound, trust me. You bite into that crunchy, cool chocolate, which is so flavorful due to the sprinkled sea salt, and then the soft & sticky caramel layer and the fudgy brownies and you are just thanking yourself for having made those.
A thick and fudgy layer of chocolaty brownies builds the base in the recipe. And yep, these totally would taste perfect by themselves, nevertheless we are taking them next level, literally. Because the next level is a creamy (and heavenly) salted date caramel layer, which tastes outrageous!! And as if this was not enough yet, we are topping everything off with a crispy layer of dark chocolate sprinkled with some sea salt. This honestly is the dot on the I and just upgrades it a whole lot.
If you are not convinced yet, let me tell you that they also are healthy. No refined sugar, no butter, no bs. Just good. We are using coconut sugar, whole-wheat flour, oil, dark chocolate and natural sweetness of the dates.
PLUS, making them is so wonderfully meditative. Really, this is the best activity for whenever you feel like procrastinating or, obviously, the best Sunday baking activity. We both know that your mouth is watering now, so head to the kitchen and get started!
Workout of the month – 30 min Heart Opening Yoga Flow
Before you stop reading because you are thinking „Yoga – really?“, just let me tell you that you definitely won’t come out of this flow without some sweating. Before I had tried this video, I actually wanted to chose a different video before, but unfortunately it had been taken off youtube and I could not find it anymore. Then I got a friends recommendation to try out this one – and it definitely did not disappoint! It is at least as good as the other one, if not better!
If you are still sceptical about doing Yoga, I can really understand you! I also was. I thought, if I already work-out then I want to really work out, I want to feel it and I want to sweat, and with Yoga this obviously is possible. (I was proven very wrong regarding sweating) Nevertheless, I tried it. Little by little. I started with 10 minute videos and then worked my way up. And eventually I started to like it. It has become a really important part of my routine, and no week passes without me doing some yoga. When you really open yourself up to it, it feels really good, it stretches your body and it really gives you a feeling for it. And you definitely sweat! So if you have been sceptical – just give it a try. A try without prejudices, where you are open to it and after you can still decide whether you like it or not.
This Yoga flow is part of a seven days gratitude series from Alo Yoga on their Youtube Chanel. As the name already suggests, in this flow you really open up your front side. This is done with a lot of bending and strengthening of the shoulders and back and also with stretching it with lots of backbends. What also is great is that Briohny Smyth (the instructor) keeps reminding you to really practice gratitude all throughout the flow. When you have ended it, you genuinely feel more grounded, relaxed and grateful. I personally love doing this flow on the weekends in the morning or on an evening after a tiring and exhausting day.
Product of the month – (the best ever) almond butter from Rapunzel
We need to put a little disclaimer here because this almond butter is dangerously addicting. Very dangerously. And it definitely is not comparable with any other almond butter there is or any you have tried before. In here we have the combination of organic roasted almonds and coconut along with the sweetness of dates, all blended up into a HEAVENLY creme.
Say goodbye to peanut butter and hello to this. The first time I tried it I was at a friends house and I think we pretty much emptied the jar right away, because there is no way you cannot. Rapunzel is a german company with the mission to produce high quality organic products. And it is not just a slogan for advertisement but what the company actually stands for.
They really care a lot about the working conditions of every single person involved into the production. From farmer to consumer. Because, as they say, only when everyone gets paid a fair price and does not have to worry about surviving each day, they can produce healthy food with great care and affection. In order to achieve this, they pay fair loans, visit their farmers and produce organically.
There really is no reason not to try this almond butter! It is incredibly delicious and produced by a company with a mission! So what does this best go along with? It is perfect on porridge, yoghurt, ice cream, overnight oats or anything else that’s sweet and that you can have as a a dessert or breakfast, such as the Overnight Vanilla Quinoa! It also is great in combination with some fresh fruit such as apple or mandarines or even on dried fruit such as dates. But really, it also is heavenly by itself, when you eat it straight out of the jar!
Inspiration of the month – the 7 habits of highly effective people
One of the best books ever. This book is full of life lessons, learnings and SO much information and inspiration on how to improve your life, your habits, your work, your personality. It is FULL of mind blowing insights and tools that make you want to change your life for the better and the healthier.
To be honest, this is one of the books that at first make you a bit uncomfortable (at least it did this to me). When reading it you realize that there still is SO much every single one of us can improve, there is so much to grow. And also that all of this is neither easy nor comfortable because we have to face new challenges, new surroundings and we have to look at things differently. We have to push ourselves out of our comfort zones. So when we start reading we have the choice: either we stay in our comfort zones and do not face the challenges and difficulties of changing and growing, or we leave our comfort zones and a new world full of possibilities and opportunities will unfold but the way there is no walk in the park.
So when we decide to leave our comfort zone and improve, this book is one of the best resources and tools you have to do so. Stephen Covey is guiding you through 7 habits that will make a tremendous impact on your life if you adapt these. And we are not talking about habits as, drink more water or go to bed early. These „habits“ are more life-style and mindset changes. Habits like „Begin with the End in Mind“ or „Seek first to understand, then to be understood“.
This might not sound life changing yet but the author really explains them in great detail, with evidence, examples and reasoning. He really goes in depth with every single habit so you genuinely understand what it is about. And yes, this book already is 32 years old, nevertheless it still is SO true nowadays because it addresses human behaviour and how we think in general. So don’t be fooled by its age – it still is one of the best books I have ever read!
These are my 6 favorite things for April – and actually I think this is my favourite or the favourites series. Every single thing in here is something I love and hopefully something you’ll love too! I am wishing you a wonderful April and a beautiful spring!