Lynn – Libra

Poor planning on my part yesterday. I was boiling my dried beans for the week and realized it was time for my walk with Yoko! What to do? I transferred the par-cooked great northern beans into the slow cooker and cranked the heat to high, so they could still be done in time for lunch and not burn down the house.

FYI – everything turned out just fine!


Cucumber, Tomato, and Bean Salad with Shallot Dressing (serves 3, or 4 side portions)

  • 1 large organic cucumber, julienned (I just used a mandolin slicer)
  • 1 medium organic tomato, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups beans
  • Dressing: 1/3 grated shallot (use microplane), 1 TB grainy mustard, 2 TB apple cider vinegar, 1 TB Tomato Basil Caper Oil

I used only a little packet of seasoning so that the leftovers wouldn’t get too wet, sitting in the fridge.


It actually didn’t need any additional salt/pepper. I added a few Sahale BBQ Almonds I won in Lindsay’s Giveaway on top, with 1/2 of a huge leftover organic apple.


I spent the rest of the afternoon parked in front of the piano, trying to learn my music for the musical workshop I’m doing. I managed to get through Act I and then headed out to meet Abe, Randall, and Jae for dinner in Culver City.

Libra is a Brazilian cafeteria that recently opened. Libra means “pound” in Portuguese, and this is a place where you pay by the lb. Very clever, huh?


Super friendly staff:


I felt bad that the large, pretty space was empty; there were lines out the door at the surrounding Mexican places for Cinco de Mayo.


You start off by washing your hands at a very hi-tech sink. Β I loved this!


Then head down the very loooong buffet…


A ton of veggie options, mostly cold…


…the warm stuff is further down (should’ve started there!)


At the very end is where you can pick your meat, which is grilled to order. Apparently they’re looking into changing the system so you can do this first, in the interest of saving time. But I wasn’t in a meat-y mood anyway, so I skipped it.


My plate:


I can’t remember everything that was on it, but the one thing I had never tried before was a piece of the Chapote, a.k.a. “Texas Persimmon” –


The texture was similar to fruit but it was salty. Meh.

They have some house-made desserts available too:


Randall (who was incredibly generous and picked up the tab) got some flan and a raspberry bar for everyone to share:


Everything was pretty tasty and they let us linger there for a long time, up to the point where the surrounding tables had chairs flipped up on them – my main issue is that everything is cold or lukewarm, but that’s kinda what you’d expect, right? Not sure if they use sustainable meats or local/organic produce (there’s not much info on their official site) but everything is made from scratch and I love how many vegetarian options there were.

If you’re curious about checking this place out, use the 15% off coupon on Harb Knock Life, which is valid all through May.

By the way, the food really sticks to your ribs! I wasn’t hungry for a bedtime snack and I’m not going to need breakfast this morning, either. Gonna meet Abe at Starry Kitchen downtown while he has jury duty at noon so we’re going straight to lunch!

Libra By The Pound on Urbanspoon

  • Anna

    Definitely looks like a good place for vegetarians!

  • Jessie

    Glad the bean salad turned out ok! Crisis averted! :)

    How cool is that sink?? I’ve never been offered a sink at a restaurant – usually I have to race to the bathroom before our food arrives and it’s such a rush. I’ve never heard of Texas Persimmon – was it really salty? I’ve never heard of salty fruit!


    woah the architecture is quite clean cut and modern in there. crazy!

  • vanillasugar

    man i miss la…lucky you. great place to eat.

  • Ameena

    So many yummy restaurants in Culver City…so little time!!

  • Chelsea

    I love how modern that place was. I bet the meat would have been delish!

  • Lauren

    How fun! I love the atmosphere and modern vibe.

  • Simply Life

    yum! what a great meal!

  • luvtoeat

    Glad the beans turned out ok.
    That is one cool sink. I can’t believe a restaurant like that would be so empty. Hope you had a good lunch with the hubby πŸ˜€

  • Katherine: What About Summer?

    I really, really like that they have a hand-washing sink

  • Erica

    Love making beans in the crock pot. That mix looks incredible. What a unique restaurant. Although I’m not down with luke warm food…I like it either hot or cold!

  • Marina

    Lovely looking veggie restaurant! I wish I could go!! :)

  • Christina

    I was expecting a post about my astrological sign! This restaurant sounds much more interesting. I had no idea that meant pound!

    Do you always use dried beans?

  • greensandjeans

    What a cool little spot! I’m headed to LA for a couple days in June, so this might just make the list!

  • sophia

    Starry Kitchen! have fun! I’ve always wanted to visit!

    I’ve heard of Libra…it sounds so cool!

    • Lynn at The Actors Diet

      sophia, you would LOVE starry kitchen (not so sure about libra). check out my latest post!

  • Justine

    That was so nice of your friend to pay for everyone’s lunch! Free food just tastes better sometimes.

  • whydeprive

    This place looks so cool! I love being able to pick out my food like that.

  • Anne Marie@New Weigh of Life

    The bean salad looks so refreshing!

  • brandi

    that place looks so neat – I love the sink.

    and I can’t WAIT for cucumber season here, just so I can make cool salads with them.