It’s been a busy week—but then, isn’t every week busy? You want good, healthy food, but you don’t have the time to prepare it yourself, and you don’t feel like going out to eat every night. One solution is a meal delivery service. Though there’s plenty of popular national services, locals can look up Golden Roots Kitchen and get a taste of Santa Cruz in their meals. The service area includes Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, Bonny Doon, and as far south as Aptos. Founder Melanie Geist tells us more.
How does Golden Roots Kitchen work?
MELANIE GEIST: Each week we offer a variety of dishes comprised of nine different options. Customers can choose a package, or order à la carte. You can choose pick-up or delivery on Tuesdays. We strive to create dishes that are flavor-driven and thoughtfully prepared, keeping both our clients’ health as well as the environment in mind. We offer organic meals which are sustainably packaged in reusable glass jars, as well as compostable and recyclable materials. We are not content to put a recipe on the menu that does not really excite us. As lovers of travel and food, a lot of international flavors inspire our meals, and my training as a natural chef has helped me uncover traditional cultures’ food wisdom: simple tools like soaking and sprouting and the use of seasonal foods and powerful herbs and spices that make food more bioavailable and digestible. We are always in the kitchen testing and retesting recipes to keep it fun for our clients and to stay inspired ourselves. We try to keep the food mostly plant-based. We do offer animal protein, but we only offer one animal protein per week. There’s a lot of protein through legumes. We also offer high-protein grains like buckwheat.
How is it different than other meal delivery services?
One thing is that meal kits seem to be the most popular services available. The main difference between us and them is you don’t have to prepare the meals. Everything is fully prepared with Golden Roots. But the other big difference is the preparation methods. We take all this time and care to take the additional initial steps. There’s no way that those things can be done in the meal kit services because it’s a several-day production to get food ready just to be cooked so that the nutrients are ready for consumption. I think having a varied menu keeps it a little more interesting. I think some of the meal kit services, the meals start to look the same. We also use a lot of herbs and earthy spices which helps in the nutrient density and digestion components, but also makes the food really flavorful and interesting. I think that a lot of the services, the food is a little more simple. Simple can be great. But we aim for the exciting.