Disease Proof

Eating to Live on the Outside: Camille's Sidewalk Café

Its spring and the weather is getting nicer, well, at least it supposed to. Right now it feels more like fall in fair New Jersey and who would eat at a sidewalk café on a gloomy fall day—I would! Because this week Eating to Live on the Outside is grabbing a bite to eat at Camille’s Sidewalk Café. Never heard of it? Neither did I. All the more reason to jump in head first!

Okay, after a quick inspection, Camille’s looks very similar to Panera Bread. And if you remember, that didn’t work out so well. Hopefully Camille’s can do better. Camille’s offers up some pretty typical menu selections: sandwiches, wraps, salads, grilled-wraps, smoothies, and various flatbread-type creations. Now I know what you’re thinking, “Sounds like a lot of bread.” Yup, I agree. Looks like some concessions are in order—surprise-surprise.

The first thing I’d consider eating would be the Bangkok Thai Wrap, but, I’ve got some finagling to do. It’s prepared with a spinach tortilla, grilled chicken breast, Provolone cheese, Romaine lettuce, sprouts, carrots, crunchy noodles, water chestnuts, and sesame Oriental dressing. For starters, the grilled chicken and the cheese are gone. No sense consuming that standard American junk! Also, the crunchy noodles are history and I’m going easy on the sesame dressing. So what am I left with? A spinach tortilla wrapped around a whole bunch of veggies and a little dressing. It’s a concession I’m willing to make, how about you?

The Sonoma Veggie Wrap also has some potential, but—and you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure this out—you’ve got to make some of the same alterations for this one that we did for the Bangkok Thai Wrap. The Sonoma Veggie Wrap comes with a spinach tortilla, Pepperjack cheese, Romaine lettuce, carrots, black olives, sprouts, sunflower seeds, and honey-mustard dressing. So then, I’m ditching the salty olives, the nasty cheese, and limiting the dressing. And again, I’m left with a lot of phytonutrients encased in a tortilla. Not a bad concession, if you’re willing to make it.

Now, salads are a great choice for an Eat to Liver, but, at face-value they’re not always a slam-dunk. Why? Well, more often than not the salads at many standard American restaurants are loaded with all sorts of the junk. I don’t know about you, but I don’t consider cheese, croutons, and crunchy noodles healthy additions to my salad. Rather, they’re just extra crap to pick off or omit. Guess what? A lot of Camille’s salads are full of this kind of stuff. So, I’ve got some work to do.

Bangkok seems to be a good place for us, so, I’m going with the Bangkok Thai Salad, which is basically the Bangkok Thai Wrap minus the spinach tortilla. So after I make some familiar alterations, I’m left with a pile of Romaine lettuce, carrots, water chestnuts, sprouts, sunflower seeds, and a little sesame Oriental dressing. Clearly, this is a better choice than the wrap, especially if refined flour products make your skin crawl.

Alright, I wouldn’t write off the other salads either. If you chip away at their standard American exterior, each one would make a decent choice for an Eat to Liver. Although, I’m not so sure what we would do with all that leftover chicken, cheese, and croutons. I wonder if it can be grinded up into Astroturf?

So what’s left to order? Well, not much. The oily Paninis aren’t worth it, especially the vegan one that comes with Feta cheese—yeah, you might want to read about that one for yourself. Also, I’m not feeling the flatbreads or the pizza. Now, you might be able to make a sandwich work for you, but they don’t look all that exciting to me, besides, you got to deal with all that bread—phooey! Personally, I’ll just stick with one of the salads or maybe sit and sip on smoothie, provided I ditch the honey first.

So there you have it, Camille’s Sidewalk Café. Probably not as bad as Panera Bread, but still, a tough sell. It’s not exactly loaded with Fuhrman-friendly options. Sure, they make a valiant attempt with their salads and providing the nutrition information online, but, Camille’s doesn’t quite cut the mustard. But don’t take my word for it, check Camille’s menu and let us know how you Eat to Live on the Outside? Leave a comment or email us at diseaseproof@gmail.com.
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