For The Sake Of Sanity

Posted on May 4, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

At the end of this post, you might question whether I have an ounce of sanity left in me. I might say I’ve never felt more sane. Finals period started today for me 2 hours ago and go on for 2 weeks from today. It’s going to be a loooong 2 weeks.

Lulu's Rare Heirloom Chocolate Bar

Lulu's Rare Heirloom Chocolate Bar

2 long weeks full of chocolate, like a new Rare Heirloom bar from Lulu’s. Oh my. Oh my, oh my, oh my was this good. It was unusually sturdy for a raw bar, with chunky coconut sugar. Even though it was 85% cacao, it wasn’t too bitter. It just tasted like pulling cocoa off a cacao tree and chowing down. Thank you for my sanity.

Honest Foods Almond Trail Mix Bar

Honest Foods Almond Trail Mix Bar

Is it insane to love the smell of a bar more than the flavor? Because I do. I could have sniffed this all night without actually eating it. These almond trail mix Honest Food bars smell like opening up a bottle of amaretto. Need I say more? I may not have had many to any drinks in my life, but I’ve definitely had enough Italiano desserts to know when a liquor’s good.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

And there will be oatmeal, lots and lots of oatmeal, over the next 2 weeks as a constant “stabilizer” in life. Equally, there will be lots of Justin’s Chocolate Peanut Butter in that time, too. Justin, don’t fail me now. I might have been blaring out loud Mika’s Happy Ending and Natalie Imbruglia’s Torn while eating this. If so, don’t worry, it was all for the sake of sanity.

Vegan Chocolate Fudge

Vegan Chocolate Fudge

You know how sometimes you wake up at 4am thinking “God, I just really need some vegan fudge right about now” but you never have it on hand? Yeah, maybe it’s a good thing if you don’t have it in the same room as you. Nevertheless, this was tasty.

D'Anjou Pear

D'Anjou Pear

10 Miles In 87:01

10 Miles In 87:01

What insane person would wake up 2 and a half hours before their first final to run 10 miles when they aren’t training for anything? Hi, nice to meet you, too. I could have made worse nutrition choices at that time than a pear, like more fudge(and the thought did cross my mind).

Oatmeal With An Egg And White Chocolate Strawberry Almond Butter, Cherry Fage With Trail Mix

Oatmeal With An Egg And White Chocolate Strawberry Almond Butter, Cherry Fage With Trail Mix

Cherry Fage With Trail Mix

Cherry Fage With Trail Mix

I’m sane, and this trail mix from Whole Foods is crazy good; I just had to go back and get more. It has in it–from what I can tell–massive chocolate spirals, dark chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, raisins, sweetened cherries, peanuts, almonds, chocolate coated raisins, and peanut butter coated yogurt raisins. Deeeelicious.

Trilogy Kombucha

Trilogy Kombucha

After my test, I walked a bit and treated myself to a Trilogy Kombucha from the bookstore; I’ll drink for my hydration and health on someone else’s money 😉 Now I can’t believe the amount of stuff I have to get done in the next 2 hours. Will I keep my sanity? Do I still have it?

What’s the most embarrassing thing on your ipod? I ran listening to music in the gym this morning, and put my whole ipod on shuffle. It was fun coming across a lot of songs I forgot I had or wouldn’t have listened to otherwise, and then came this song. Oh brother, how tastes change.

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Raw Foods And Fried Foods

Posted on April 27, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If you asked me what I loved to eat, I’d probably answer fried foods and raw foods. At least the one balances out the other, right? The easiest ways I find to get raw foods in is a fresh salad:

Maple Spinach Salad With Raw Cheddar, Avocado, Maple Tofu, And Maple Walnuts

Maple Spinach Salad With Raw Cheddar, Avocado, Maple Tofu, And Maple Walnuts

Let’s call this the “garbage can” salad because I threw whatever I wanted to get rid of on it. And it worked! The base was spinach tossed with maple syrup and walnut oil. In the mix was 1/2 an avocado, a Next Generation Dairy cheddar cheese stick, and leftover maple tofu, topped with Tierra Farm‘s maple glazed nuts. I made this to-go to eat in class like always on Tuesdays but it didn’t make it that far 8-| I just couldn’t resist; and it was so tasty! I went with my hunger and ate it and went off to class.

Almond Protein Plus Boomi Bar

Almond Protein Plus Boomi Bar

Mid-afternoon I snacked on an almond protein plus Boomi Bar. I’ve always wanted to make my own bar like this: throw it all together and hope it works. I like that this was 3 simple ingredients: almonds, honey, and whey protein isolate. I didn’t care much for protein isolate, though(I rarely do). And the flavor wasn’t quite as good as Perfect Foods Bars(reviewed here).

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

I had an apple after taking another Greek language test. If you remember, I made a small fortune off of taking them earlier in the semester, and I’m hoping the same for this one. Although since I’m competing against juniors and seniors who know much more than me, I’m wary.

Raw Brownies

Raw Brownies

I also found time to “bake” raw brownies this afternoon, except I used a different recipe with a few new, secret ingredients. I’m not sure how they’ll be once they set. And the added ingredients definitely added a ton of fat. The batter was tasty, at least.

Food Processor

Food Processor

My favorite thing about vegan desserts is that you can always eat the batter. I think I had a little too much of this. Blech. But it was good! Can’t wait to see how these come out.

Preparing Dinner

Preparing Dinner

For dinner I gave my first attempt at frying! I filled my pan with a good coating of sesame oil and laid down some tofu strip. I let them brown for about 3 minutes on each side.

Sesame Tofu, Broccoli And Snap Peas With Soy Sauce And Sesame Oil

Sesame Tofu, Broccoli And Snap Peas With Soy Sauce And Sesame Oil

Golden Sesame Tofu

Golden Sesame Tofu

And then for my Asian-inspired dinner. I probably could have let the tofu go for longer; it certainly didn’t taste like Whole Foods. But I was really proud of this! I feel like a whole new culinary style has opened up to me, and I can start to use a Paula Dean cookbook 😉 Is a deep fryer in store for me over the Summer? Probably not. I’ll let Whole Foods handle that.

Do you/Did you ever walk around the neighborhood a lot? Usually, after dinner(especially a good, big one), we would walk around the neighborhood for fun and for health. I feel like when the weather’s nice everyone’s out around where I live. I can’t wait for that during the Summer again! And I definitely feel like I could use a walk now. It might not be as good without the neighborhood, but I’ll find somewhere.

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The Foods I Crave

Posted on April 8, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’m a big fan of “eat what you crave”. I truly think cravings can be a way for your body to tell you something that you need. I also tend to crave really yummy things and might just use that as an excuse to eat them more often. Take your pick.

Grass-Fed Burger, Maple Tofu, Spinach With Sassy Hemp Oil Dressing

Grass-Fed Burger, Maple Tofu, Spinach With Sassy Hemp Oil Dressing

Today for lunch I craved a juicy piece of red meat. I do think I crave meat when my body wants proteins or specific vitamins at times but I would never assert that you need to eat meat or even dairy to get those. I think you can be completely adequately fueled and nourished whatever your diet may be so long as you pay a little more closer attention to what you might be missing. On the side I had some maple tofu, not really because I was craving it but it was Easter leftovers. I have craved tofu at times before; that’s always a fun and unexpected craving 😀

Cashew Almond Pranabar

Cashew Almond Pranabar

I think my lunch needed more veggies because it wasn’t very filling :-/ Happily, I broke in to the cashew almond Pranabar I packed. Even if it wasn’t what I was craving, this was good!  I never would have guessed from the packaging it would be so chunky and nutty. I love that it’s mostly raw with living enzymes; and the nuts are chunky and delicious 🙂 I definitely can’t wait to try more Pranabar flavors; I might even start to crave them.

Strawberry Chobani

Strawberry Chobani

What I was craving was a strawberry Chobani. My friend, Alex, ate one in our 1pm class and for the next 3 hours I couldn’t get my mind of the smell of sweet strawberries and the Summer air *swoon*. This did not disappoint, but it was a little too tiny to really fill me up before dinner.

Dining-Hall Apple

Dining-Hall Apple

If I ever do crave an apple, it’s a nice, fresh, crisp red delicious, and not this slightly bruised one that I had at hand. That being said, I go with what’s free and convenient. Did you know vegans can get all their Vitamin B12–something normally found in animal proteins–through the decay and bacteria on fruits and vegetables? I guess this was insurance if this burger didn’t have enough :-/…

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Glazed Nuts And Syrup

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

And I absolutely crave chickpeas; I could eat them for every meal, and I know I’m not the only one. They’re like little nuggets of vegan joy. Besides those, I don’t normally crave cheese but I do enjoy it(and love the bloggers who do crave it) and Next Generation Dairy makes a fine raw cheddar cheese. I topped off the salad with some Tierra Farm‘s maple glazed nuts and sea salt. Fun fact: I’m convinced if I ever start craving canned tuna, it means my sodium level is low. I’m also sipping a root beer Zevia with dinner, for anyone who cares; it’s my first stevia sweetened beverage of the day and after no coffee or tea I was craving something other than water.

What are you craving right now? Personally, I could go for some coconut milk hearing  Heather talk about it so much lately. And I haven’t had my healthy ounce of dark chocolate yet today. Hmm… decisions, decisions. If you crave Greek yogurt, you’re in luck with this Oikos giveaway!

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“These Aren’t Treadmill Miles”

Posted on March 6, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

This morning marked a glorious return to outside running. I’m a bit of a nit-pick when it comes to the weather; I like it hot and sunny, 80’s please. But with my race coming up in 3 weekends, I thought it would be good to do some outdoor running while the weather was so gorgeous today. 50! It felt like springtime. So I laced up, booted up the Garmin, and hit the streets of Providence down the Eastside path. I’m not the biggest fan or run reports, but since this was my first time outside in nearly 4 months, I think it’s worth one 😉

Through The Window

Mile 1: All I could think was how much I wanted to grill, drink a blueberry smoothie, and eat a peach! Memories of Summer came flooding back and I felt incredible. Everything felt alive again.

Mile 2-3: It started to hit me: These weren’t treadmill miles I was running. In my mind, miles on the ‘mill are as good as the road; my legs, however, disagree, and it didn’t help that at times the path was not paved and still soaked from snow a few days ago. I really didn’t know how long I could go.

Mile 4: I just tried to keep my mind off of things, and even worked on a smoothie recipe(to follow).

Mile 5: Should I stick with my intentions for 9 miles or cut back to 6? No, I can do this!I’ve done it once and I can do it again, literally(the run I was on had me repeat a 3-mile path route.

Mile 6-7: I really soaked up the sun, enjoyed the company of fellow runners and dogs. Getting out of my mind was the key.

Mile 8-9.5: I had a great time and a great run. I even ran into Whole Foods to grab a blueberry Chobani and tried not to dilly-dally looking at groceries too much(though I easily could have).

9.56 Miles In 1:24:13

Will I hit the streets again sometime soon? You betcha! Probably even tomorrow. During the week, I really like running 1st thing, so that time will probably be at the gym. But the weekends can be another story. I was also ready to refuel(food does make fun fuel, after all), and whipped together that smoothie I mentioned.

Blueberry Almond Recovery Shake

In the food processor went

  • 1 blueberry Chobani
  • 1/4 unsweetened Almond Breeze
  • 1/2 Tablespoon almond butter
  • 5 ice cubes

This was the perfect smoothie considering what I had on hand. It’s full of quick carbs, complete protein, and a little fat to help with the fat-soluble nutrients. Not only is a smoothie a great way to cool down, it also let me not worry about making a full lunch fast so that I could shower, rest up, and put together a good meal.

Grass-Fed Quarter Pounder, Roasted And Charred Sweet Potato

You would not believe how soft a sweet potato is after 4 1/2 hours in the oven; it’s hardly a solid at that point. I put it in at 9:30 when I anticipated getting back from my run late. I turned off the oven at 10:30 but let it continue cooking in there in the foil. By the time the burger was done at 2, the sweet potato could have fallen apart in my hand. So as to not waste the beef fat, I sliced it in half and charred it in my pan–easy clean up, too! It all tasted soft and delicious(even the meat, which was–admittedly–undercooked). My only complaint would be that sweet potatoes hardly feel filling after all that.

After almost 10 miles outside, sitting in, doing work, and watching a movie sounded like a goodthing to me. 95% of the movies I watch are on TV, so I was pretty excited to stumble on The Da Vinci Code not 5 minutes in. I also was really craving a brownie, but wasn’t about to walk the mile to Whole Foods to get one. What to do?

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Chip Brownies

The freezer to the rescue! I found the last two-bite bits of these brownies I made for New Years Eve with peanut butter chips. Holy yum! They were still as good after dethawing. The trick to a good brownie is good chocolate chips in them.

Chocolate Bacon Peanut Brittle

A little later and I was feeling a bit… gluttenous? I don’t think Lent is healthy for me; it gives me the oddest meat cravings to repress on Friday only to erupt Saturday. This time, I thought I would try the chocolate bacon peanut brittle from Sir Francis Bacon.

Soy Yogurt With Chocolate Bacon Peanut Brittle

Over soy yogurt, of course, because I eat up that irony! Wow–the brittle was an experience like no other. I recapped them both at the end, but I think the chocolate version was such an improvement over the original. You can really taste the milkfat in the chocolate and that’s pretty key.

Apple

Before dinner I snacked on this apple and plenty of coffee while reading all about the slave and sugar trade for class. All day I felt like I was either eating or thinking of what to eat next, which makes me wonder if outdoor miles really could be different from treadmill miles and require more food. Clearly, I was happy to oblige. But for dinner I really just wanted to sit down and eat a meal that would make me feel full.

Salt And Pepper Tuna Salad, Broccoli, Pickles, Sunflower Cheddar Flatbreads

Salt And Pepper Tuna Salad, Broccoli, Pickles

I also wanted picnic food! Today’s good weather had me thinking a tuna salad–as simple as they are–sounded perfect. When I was in pre-K, I remember getting served tuna salad sandwiches for lunch and making them scrape off the tuna and mayo; I was not a fan :-/ Now I make them with 365 brand wild caught tuna fish in spring water and greek yogurt(2% here) and love ’em! The broccoli felt fresh, and what could say picnic better than Dr. Krackerssunflower cheddar flatbread? It’s not a gluten-free food by any means. But I love the cheddar with the chewy sunflower seeds and any discomfort will be well worth it.

First of all, there’s this giveaway for Honest Foods bars to tell you about. Next up I have to ask how do you feel about movies on TV? Like I mentioned, they’re about all the movies I see. I’m looking through the TV Guide right now and it looks like not much other than Forest Gump will be on here. Humph. Lastly, let me review some bacon peanut brittle for you.

Bacon Peanut Brittle

8.5/10: No, your eyes do not deceive you. Sir Francis Bacon does indeed make a brittle composed of peanuts and bacon. A lot went through my mind in trying this. The first things I noticed were the instant aroma of smoked bacon opening the package and the abundance of ingredients in this brittle–perfect. I’ll admit that I was nervous–to say the least–that this would taste like a 7-Eleven reject. And it very well might have if the company didn’t put such tremendous care in making a smoky, robust brittle with a subtle sweetness to liven it all up. Thankfully, this tasted delicious and just as I described. I would not recommend this to anyone unsure about the idea of bacon and dessert; the flavor really is potent. But if you’re wacky for eccentric foods, this just might be worth tracking down and paying the rough-but-fair price tag.

Chocolate Bacon Peanut Brittle

9/10: I don’t know what to say about the combination of peanuts, bacon, and milk chocolate other than–wow! This really was an improvement on the original bacon peanut brittle; not only are the pieces perfectly pre-proportioned because of the chocolate covering but the chocolate itself has the perfect milkfat content to be rich and powerful against the smokiness of the bacon. Similar to their other product, this is definitely something you need to be interested in before going whole hog and trying it. But if you know the flavors are for you, be a pig and dig in to the box of chocolates.

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A Little Something For Everyone

Posted on February 8, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I love hearing that a lot of you have seen the Emmy’s Organics macaroons but just haven’t picked them up yet! Well, I don’t like that last part, but I will say you’re lucky in that I’d never seen these before they showed up at my door and do suggest you give them a shot(Better yet–get a different flavor and tell me how that one is!).

For lunch I “planned” for a fly-by sort of meal where I would just go with whatever’s quick and simple. Who “plans” for grabby meals like that? Apparently, me 🙂 I ended up with a plate that had a little something  for everyone on it(but all for me really).

2 Eggs, Feta & Spinach Chicken Sausage, Tempeh Bacon, Gluten Free Oatmeal Cookie

The Wow Baking Company Gluten Free Cookie

This was a lot of fat, a lot of protein, and a little bit of carbs, and it totally worked for me! At least at this meal it did. I thought the idea of having (vegan) bacon and eggs was cute, as was the idea of having eggs and chicken (sausage). Sooo why not have it all? And with a gluten free cookie on the side? Perfect! A little something for whatever your eating habits may be. 🙂 This sausage was a new one to me; I loved how delicious salty it was! It wasn’t very feta in flavor, but it certainly had flavor and would be a perfect basic sausage.

The Wow Baking Company Oregon Oatmeal Cookies

The Oregon Oatmeal cookie was part of the pack from The Wow Baking Company. It smelt sooo good! Like fresh cinnamon–yum! I loved the base of the cookie, with rich tones of butter and thick, hearty oats. But the fruit I thought was a little bland and lacking. And this was a LOT of sugar. I mean, what can you expect from a cookie overall? Definitely something fun to eat, but it didn’t really WOW me.

Thumb Cut

I actually was a supreme clutz today. I managed to burn my bicep(yes, my bicep) with the pan I was cooking eggs with. Can’t figure out how one does that? It’s very complicated, and I’m clutzy enough. Later on I got a package from the mail room and managed to slice my hand open with my room key trying to open it. Not a big cut but I did manage to finish off a roll of paper towels throughout the afternoon stopping the bleeding–joy. It was worth it though because the package had goodies from Honest Foods such as this bar I snacked on:

Honest Foods Almond Trail Mix Granola Bar

First off, this bar was another product where the smell was just amazing. This time, I swore I was sniffing an open bottle of amaretto 😀 Holy sweetness. But the flavor was underwhelmingly almondy after all that; it was good but had a lot going on with other seeds and fruits. I loved the nutrition, though! Not many bars have a healthy fat source higher than sugar on the ingredient list; that’s rocking! Keeping up with the almond theme, I tried a new butter.

Trader Joe's Almond Butter With Roasted Flaxseeds

Monica convinced me I needed this in my life, so that last time I was at Trader Joe’s I grabbed it off the shelf. As if it weren’t enough of a fat source, I thought I’d throw it over some pudding.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Trader Joe Almond Butter

Chocolate avocado pudding made with almond milk, to be exact. The combination of almond and chocolate wasn’t so perfect here–not sure why not 😦 TJ’s almond butter was awesome and so well salted. But I wasn’t a huge fan of the flax seeds. Too sweet, maybe? And I don’t like having to chew them to get the nutrition from them :-/ What can I say? I’m lazy.

For dinner, I had planned to meet up with some friends in one of the dining halls. At this dining hall, you don’t have to use any meal credits to get in and only pay or what you pick off the line, so I was able to bring my whole meal without using my meal plan. Beforehand, I made some of my favorite foods in the oven in my dorm, wrapped them in foil, and was good to go!

Maple Baked Tofu, Sweet Potato Fries, Roasted Broccoli, Orange Zevia

Roasted Broccoli, Sweet Potato Fries

Better than cafeteria food? I think so. No matter how many times I roast sweet potatoes, they never cease to impress me. I think maple baking tofu is the simplest way to add flavor, but I’m definitely on the lookout for new recipes to switch it up. It was great to catch up with things from the past week in some case and the whole of winter breaks in another; one of my friends is a fellow runner and might have another half marathon to turn me on to! I’ll have to see. The only downside was getting into my dorm at 8:30 and thinking “Gosh I’m home late”. And when exactly do I get my senior citizen discount? In my defense, I have my alarm set for a 6:15 run!

Did this post provoke you to think of new things to try? I’ve found plenty of recipes for almond milk, and it’s much simpler than I would have imagined! I have yet to track down some Jungle Peanuts, but rest assured I will 😉 In the meantime, here’s an appliance giveaway, a coconut oil giveaway, a chocolate giveaway, an iherb giveaway, and another coconut oil giveaway.

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The Best Thing I Ever Ate

Posted on January 3, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I love love love The Best Thing I Ever Ate. Chef’s going gaga over their favorite foods? Sign me up. I could watch it for hours, which I totally did last night since there was a marathon on(new season premiering in 5 days, forward the word!). Anyway, this has to be one of the best things I’ve ever eaten.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Original NibMor

Any surprise that it’s chocolate? Didn’t think so. Raw chocolate avocado pudding is just to die for, if you’ve never tried it. It’s creamy, thick, rich, sweet–I could go on and on. I don’t think coconut milk kefir is raw thought(maybe?), so I threw in a piece of really good NibMor original raw chocolate to counterbalance it. That’s how food math works in my mind. It was delicious. So delicious, in fact, that right before bed when all I wanted to do was eat something simple and go to sleep, all I wanted to eat was this again. I was not about to whip out and clean the food processor at 10:30, so I used what was leftover of the first avocado, a fork, and some almond milk to make it into a quickie.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Almond NibMor

Not as pretty, but it got the job done 😉 I think this one might have been actually raw because of the almond breeze? To tie in the almond I tried Nibmor’s Almond flavor for the first time. For the most part, it was absolutely delicious. I mean, chocolate and nuts? What could go wrong. I did, however, get one big raw almond that was a little too chewy for this nut enthusiast(I love my roasted nuts. I really do). Overall though, it was still a good dessert, if 1/4 cup cocoa powder and an avocado can ever be called a “dessert”.

Perhaps not so surprisingly, eating that sugar right before bed did not help me go to sleep very fast. Once I did and finally woke up, my avocado hangover had me not wanting to do my “standard” workout. Instead, I checked out what we had On Demand. Umm, since when did that have so many options? Really, I could do a different workout every day. I settled on a 20-minute kickboxing one and 1/2 a 50-minute yoga flow. This was my first time trying both of these activities and it’s probably a good thing it was in the comfort of my own home because it was messy. I also got a little P.O.ed at the kickboxer telling me “We’re almost there” when we weren’t near finishing. Don’t lie to me. I can’t handle it.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pumpkin Cream Cheese And Mighty Maple

Peanut Butter Yogurt With Fig Jam

For breakfast I had some very Autumnal oats and a great yogurt for protein to build back up muscle. The combination of salty peanut butter yogurt and sweet fig jam is incredible. Almost(but not quite) the best thing I ever ate. I just love mighty maple and pumpkin cream cheese on anything so that one doesn’t even count. When I was flipping through the Sunday circulars looking for coupons, I snacked on an apple and lookie what I spotted.

Pink Lady Apple

Chocolate And Caramel Oikos

Chocolate and caramel? Am I reading this right? Umm, yes please! How funny that I’m all excited for this, when in theory I could jut put chocolate syrup or caramel sauce on top of my yogurt right now… I’d rather wait for someone else to do it for me 🙂 Lunch was leftovers, except I didn’t feel like eating meat and that was most of the leftovers. Instead, I threw some tempeh slices in a pan with 1 tablespoon soy sauce and maple syrup and let that brown up.

Maple-Soy Tempeh, Broccoli, Carrots, And Parsnips With Soyaki

Well that was quick and delicious–definitely making a mental note for times I don’t feel like cooking and just want some real food fast. Except it was soy and had a lot of fiber and now is sitting in my stomach like a brick 😦 The best foods always do that. Maybe I should eat another square of chocolate? It does speed up the digestion of carbs… hell, it just makes everything better.

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R & R

Posted on October 14, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Note to self: If you want to run your first half marathon in the morning, don’t plan on anything else for the rest of the day. That was pretty much the lesson I learned after yesterday’s experience. Thanks for all the good-wishes; I don’t know that I’ll be “just getting up and deciding” to break any previous PR by 3 miles any time soon. Unfortunately, after my half marathon, I had a full Greek class(see what I did there? ;-)). It’s not so bad since I literally translated this last year and remember most of it–yay for me! When I got out I stumbled over to the mailbox room, through the lunch line, and back to my dorm. My 1/2 tablespoon of White Chocolate Wonderful with breakfast that I had to talk myself into at the time caused a real craving and had me making the weirdest lunch yet:

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful, Vegan Sloppy Joe Mix, Cucumbers, Broccoli

Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful, Vegan Sloppy Joe Mix, Cucumbers, Broccoli

I told you it was weird; I wasn’t going to do it, but I figured it’s best to listen to your cravings when you’re more active than usual. The vegan sloppy joe mix was from the cafeteria, and I think a medley of tomatoes, peppers, tempeh, and tofu. It was pretty good though a bit bland. The oats were perfect and soul-soothing; could you ask for anything more from a hot bowl of grains? While I was eating, I was so happy to find this in the mail:

Attune Coupons

Attune Coupons

Daniel from Attune sent over some coupons for me to sample and review some of their products and I could not be more thankful! I’m sure you’ve all heard me harp on about probiotics and how I strive to get 2 sources a day. Well, the people at Attune share my same enthusiasm for bacteria and probiotically fortify chocolate bars. Chocolate and probiotics–could it get better? I love my yogurt and frozen yogurt, but variety is always welcomed. Thank you, Daniel and Attune, I can’t wait to try these out. After some uber-duper exciting email reading and google reading, I came to a bit of halting reality: That Whole Foods and F.Y.E. trip I would have loved to take was not happening, not on my legs at least. It seemed I underestimated the strain my body would take and nothing was budging. Instead my afternoon looked an awful lot like this:

Sitting And Sipping Coffee

Sitting And Sipping Coffee

Oh yeah, that was deserved. This semester running might have persuaded my class scheduling a tad. Would it be too much if next semester running AND TV were taken into consideration? Didn’t think so. Well I made a list of all the History readings I “shoud’ve” done by this point. Yikes. I haven’t read anything for that class. Thankfully, it seems like the teacher hasn’t either, haha. Hopefully my being awake in class and taking notes will be enough combined with a little cramming come midterm time. I also took out some books and some snacks:

Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Poetry is never as fun as one would think; sure, it has rythym and soul. But the poet takes way too much “artistic liscence” and I’m not one of the people patient enough to dig for the deeper meaning. But if there’s anything I learned in high school, it’s how to BS an essay with crazy interpretating which is exactly what I plan to do for this class. On another note, I love Ellen. She’s always giving away money to unfortunate people on her show and that feels so good just to watch. I also made a delicious “mousse” around this time:

Peanut Pumpkin Maple Mousse

Peanut Pumpkin Maple Mousse

Yum. For this, I mixed 2% plain greek yogurt, 1/2 cup pumpkin, 2 tablespoons peanut flour, cinnamon, and stevia, and topped with maple-agave syrup. The peanut flour really thickens it, adds a depth to the flavor, and gives it a moussey texture. I was thinking of granola-topping this but it just seemed so perfectly light and airy on its own. I also caught up on HIMYM. Even though it was a Barney heavy episode, it wasn’t one of my favorites of the new season. I don’t like that Robin and Barney are becoming a boring couple. Oh well, some hit and some miss. By 5:30, I felt way too caged in and needed to get out, even if my legs wanted to stay behind. I picked out a nutty bar:

Honey Almond Flax Kashi Bar

Honey Almond Flax Kashi Bar

On the one hand, I’m trying to eat whole, unpackaged food as much as possible. On the other hand, I have a lot of dorm-room stuff I need to eat before it goes bad, so I’ll be trying to fit them in exciting and creative ways into my meals. I decided that, if somewhere down the road someone asked me “how did you celebrate running your first half?”, “I didn’t” wouldn’t be a great response. So what would? “I went to a party that night, got smashed, and met Emma Watson”. Well that would make a good story but isn’t very likely and definitely isn’t me. “I got a gourmet cupcake.” Much better.

Cupcakerie Cupcakes

Cupcakerie Cupcakes

I went to Blue State Coffee where they carry these delectable goodies made by The Cupcakerie. These are the people who made that great Vegan Buttercream Cupcake I had for Cookie Friday. I also love them for this:

Blue State Coffee

Blue State Coffee

Kosher, Shade Grown, Fair Trade, and Organic. Best yet–they always brew me a decaf whenever I go unlike some companies *cough*Starbucks*cough* who actually denied to brew my mom decaf at 6pm. Cupcake in hand, I went back to my dorm just as it started to rain. Unfortunately, I had to go back out in that rain to meet my friend, Adam, for dinner.

Zuchinni And Tempeh Bake, Ginger Vegetables, Chickpea Stew

Zuchinni And Tempeh Bake, Ginger Vegetables, Chickpea Stew

Up to this point I was keeping a close eye making sure I was refueling well after my half. I couldn’t really keep track of the calories on this plate, but I used guestimation and all was right with the world. The tempeh was really good, as I always find tempeh. I love that touch of sourness from the fermentation. The vegetables were also surprisingly good. Not only were they cooked the right amount, but the ginger was present and popped through. Unfortunately, the chickpea stew, which had a lot of potential, was way too heavy and bland. I even added loads of cinnamon and salt and it couldn’t fix it. Oh well, overall pretty darn good.

After dinner was NBC Tuesday! I love The Biggest Loser, and haven’t missed a season yet. I just love the theme song; it has such an uplifting message, you know it’ll be an inspiring episode. I can’t believe how lucky Tracy’s gotten this season and how little weight she’s lost; that really bugs me and is not in the spirit of the show if you ask me. Sometime through I broke into the cupcake I purchased:

Wake Up and Smell the Cupcake

Wake Up and Smell the Cupcake

I went in for a carrot cake cupcake, but this one was the last of its flavor so I really felt like it was calling for me. It’s described as “An eye-opening mocha cake with espresso cream cheese frosting topped with a chocolate covered espresso bean”. Normally, I don’t do caffeine, but I made an exception 😉 I felt semi-bad eating this while watching people slave to lose poundage on The Biggest Loser. But not too bad because I’ve done my time in the gym and then some so this was well worth it. You just gotta learn what in life needs moderation. The cake was so incredibely moist–best not to think about how much oil must have been in it and just how good it tasted. And the frosting was cream cheese–just as I like it. I decided to opt out of the chocolate covered bean on top. I know it’s such a small amount of caffeine, but it was 9 at night and I’m a proud party pooper 🙂

While I was watching(and getting disappointed by the voting of The Biggest Loser), I did up a formal translation of the poem I’ll be writing an essay on, and, more importantly, made a snack:

English Muffin With Pumpkin Peanut Butter And Pumkin Cream Cheese

English Muffin With Pumpkin Peanut Butter And Pumkin Cream Cheese

I’m officially getting annoyed by pumpkin. It’s everywhere, even in my room. I want to shun it and never see it again, but then I crave it. Since when did pumpkin become crack? I’m an addict. And Libby is my dealer.

Getting to bed has been a bit of a trouble lately. I’m a firm believer in shutting your computer off at least 45 minutes before you plan to snooze and lights off 30 minutes before. Living with a roommate, the second one’s not so easy, so I tried making due with the lights on to no avail. Thankfully, he had to go work on a project in someone else’s room a little after 11, but I still didn’t get to bed till around midnight and snacked on some carbs to get me to shut eye.

Peanut Butter Z-Bar

Peanut Butter Z-Bar

This morning’s run brought an interesting concept to mind. All through out the Summer when I ran and up till now, I’ve run the same distance give or take a mile day after day. now that I’m getting up there and spontaneously doing halfsies, that can’t be happening(because I am not running 12-14 miles daily. No way, no how). Varying my distance, and pace for that matter, are two things I’m going to need to get use to. I decided to do a traditional Tuesday/Thursday run and see how far I’d get in an hour flat. At the end, I ran 7.15 miles, so not bad. There were about 50 different food combos I was craving when I got back to my room. Rather than try a new recipe on the fly and potentially get disappointed by breakfast, I decided it was better to do 2 things right than 20 things wrong:

French Toast Oatmeal, Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

French Toast Oatmeal, Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

I am soooo excited for my Naturally Nutty shipment to come in tomorrow; these new seed butters are amazing. But when it comes to the good ol’ peanut, butter toffee definitely tops the chart for a great flavor. I feel like this is something obvious but worth saying: They key to good french toast oatmeal is in the spicing. I was dying for a good, runny egg this morning and this is the best way I know how. Just be sure to use quality cinnamon, sea salt, and vanilla powder if you have it, and it will really shine through.

I hope to get to a grocery store today but it’s going to be freezing in NE! How is it that time of year again? Worse yet, they were talking Christmas gifts on The Today show. Really? Already?

One Fit Foodie is having a Nasoya giveaway! I’d love to do some tofu-loving in my dorm on days when the cafeteria is boring as… something not tofu? haha.

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Build Me Up Butternut

Posted on October 7, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

As you can tell, there are a few new changes to the blog. Yesterday was all about building up, up, and away. I can’t believe Food Makes Fun Fuel has come this far from a Summer distraction, and I can’t wait to see where it will go next. After sending in an application last week, yesterday I became a Featured Foodbuzz Blogger. I’m super excited as you might be able to tell to take on that role and whatever might come of it. I’ve had to adjust the layout a bit. Any ideas for what you think the header should be? I stuck with some Fall themed PB & Oats, since I think that’s pretty descriptive of everything right now. That being said, don’t be surprised if I’m procrastinating on a paper some day soon and switch it up. I also have big plans over the next month(yes–we’re talking month because I do have homework and an attempt at a life) to reorganize the Product Reviews for them to be much more readable like the Recipes page. Lastly, I wrote up a quick blurb called How I Fuel for new readers to get a sense of my food philosophy, so check that out.

And thanks for all the well-wishes on my exam. I think it went pretty well; it’s kind of hard to tell with language courses because you either know the vocab and constructions or you take a guess at the vocab and constructions. That being said, I think I finished feeling about par for the class so I feel strong and know I did what I could. Afterwards I stopped by somewhere I might not have otherwise expected myself:

Rockefeller Library

Rockefeller Library

We have a pretty decent library, but it’s very… libraryish? I’m not a fan of anywhere where a cough is a spectacle and books are the main source of entertainment. Funny because my grandmother was a town librarian for 40 years. Yikes. I printed what I needed and dashed. I swung by the dining hall and grabbed a lunch that really buttered me up:

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup, Maple Mustard Tofu, Broccoli, Italian Veggies, Mushrooms

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup, Maple Mustard Tofu, Broccoli, Italian Veggies, Mushrooms

Get the joke? Oh, I’m punny 🙂 This soup was actually AMAZING. Better yet, I looked up the nutrition/ingredient details because I can and it was equally spectacular. This was pretty much straight, seasoned squash puree with a little EVOO. I try to stick to “vegan” things in the dining hall because anything else risks a heavy case of butteritis(and not butternut). I added a little cinnamon and salt and that took me off to heaven. The rest was decent, too. No protein really stood out to me so I went with the maple/mustard combo of last week and that was perfect.

I hope you’re sitting down reading this: I didn’t go to a grocery store yesterday afternoon. Fever? Nope. Swine Flu? Nope. I just really had nothing I needed other than to get work done, so I stayed put on campus. It’s not entertaining, but c’est la vie. This was more what my afternoon looked like:

Study Area And Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Study Area And Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

Plus daytime TV, of course. How could I miss that 😉 I try not to do the processed food thing when in my dorm room but I needed something I could nibble slowly on to work and my palate said chocolate brownie Z-bar or straight baking chips; I think I chose the better route. I’m not going to claim to have done anything spectacular other than translate pages and pages from dead authors who have been translated time and time again, but if that doesn’t get your goat I don’t know what will. Oh, maybe this:

Banana Goodness Bread With Smart Balance Peanut Butter In Low-Fat Plain Yogurt

Banana Goodness Bread With Smart Balance Peanut Butter In Low-Fat Plain Yogurt

When Baked Goods Met Freezer should be the sequel to When Harry Met Sally, because it’s a hit. I dethawed some of my Banana Goodness Bread and topped it with Smart Balance peanut butter(which I’ve been oddly obsessed with lately) and threw in some plain low-fat yogurt for a controlled yogurt mess. I think low-fat plain yogurt has the perfect flavor, with just a touch of cream, to the point where it doesn’t need any sweetening whatsoever. Speaking of X Met Y, I might have caught up with How I Met Your Mother at this time and that might have been the best episode of the season thus far in my opinion; anything Barney + Robin I’ll be a sucker for. I met Adam whom I ditched last night for dinner:

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup, Carrots, Green Beans, Black Bean And Spinach Ragout

Vegan Butternut Squash Soup, Carrots, Green Beans, Black Bean And Spinach Ragout

Why do you fill me up, butternut baby? Again, delicious. I even brought cinnamon to the dining hall to add to it(is that weird? Don’t answer that, I’ll take a wild guess). The veggies were all their veggie self. The bean and spinach thing wasn’t bad, but it definitely didn’t prompt me to finish all of it. I was happy ending the meal on the note of my soup and Grease playing in my mind.

Tuesday nights NBC has stolen me. With The Biggest Loser and Jay Leno, how could I not just park myself on that station? I loved the theme of this week; how Americans have so much trouble eating out I don’t know but they do and that needed to be addressed. I’ve always felt a little “special” when i get nit-picky about my food when we eat out, but it’s entirely worth it to have a healthy and delicious meal made the way you want it(so long as the waiter doesn’t get p-ssed and spit in your food). Midway through I got an intense craving and had to leave my dorm for this:

Don’t I take a great photo 😉 But in all seriousness, in getting this yogurt, I was robbed. Not on the walk over, or even the walk back, but in the cafeteria, at the checkout, when I realized it was 2.85. Wtf? Is it made with gold now or something? I’ve always believed in feeding your cravings but not if they’re going to drive you to the poor house. I’m going to need to bolster up on some Oikos soon at Whole Foods to avoid that situation. But I do love that hint o’ cream in the base, and that this flavor has less sugar than other Chobani fruit flavors, so I guess it’s OK in the end. Have I not mentioned my obsession lately?

Smart Balance And Semi-Sweet Baking Chip Oats

Smart Balance And Semi-Sweet Baking Chip Oats

Dear Smart Balance, please make a chocolate flavor and spare me the extra effort. Your stalker, Evan. If this were a flavored nut butter I might understand the cravings; last I checked, flax oil wasn’t a “flavor”, but that might have just changed. And in case anyone’s ever wondered, the side-effects from too many Omega-3’s in the diet are an elevated mood, diarrhea, and thinned blood. I looked that up one day over the Summer when my intake of salmon, Smart Balance, and flax was a little more than gratuitous. I also had some toast with cream cheese and peanut butter cookie spread because I really wanted to fuel for the AM run.

When I woke up it was pouring. And I’m talking “Get out the ark” pouring. But I took it in stride and went to the gym. I wanted to run 10 miles this morning. But I knew if I used that word “want” that left doubt, so instead I told myself I was running 10 miles. I put on the ipod video and got going, although the real drama was the lightening and monsoon occurring outside. Mile 4 was the longest by far, and continually peeking at the distance didn’t help. I got through it nonetheless and finished strong in 82:46. Obviously, I was ecstatic because that’s only the 5th time I’ve run that distance and I felt really strong afterwards. I got back to my dorm a little later than usual but dent ahead with my planned bowl of oats:

Oatmeal With Fluff, Vanilla Almond Butter, And Strawberry Jam, Strawberry Chobani

Oatmeal With Fluff, Vanilla Almond Butter, And Strawberry Jam, Strawberry Chobani

Strawberry, vanilla, and almond could not possibly go better together; this bowl makes me miss Summer so much as I look out on the damp streets right now. This Chobani was not 2.85, thankfully. It’s from the ones I won off of Heather’s contest. It’s a little thin, and a lot of sugar, but it’s got some good flavor. I really wish they used the 2% base more because I think that really makes the yogurt.

Today I have no clue what to do. I suppose it’s dependant on the weather, like always in New England in Fall. I have 7 strong essay pages, so I’m not stressing that one too much yet until I realize I have nothing to make it longer with(TWSS?). Anyway, toodle loo!

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Farms And Libraries

Posted on September 10, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Yesterday morning I had my first–and, as would later be the case, last–math class. It was so full I ended up on the floor, and it’s basically the exact same material as I took last semester. I figured I either needed to take a high level course or give myself longer to forget the old material.

I’m very lucky in that every Wednesday there’s a farmer’s market literally outside my window.

Farmer's Market

Farmer's Market

Not only is this close, but it’s legit; there were way more vendors than most of the ones back in Marlborough. I picked up this little beauty:

Narragansett Plain Whole Milk Yogurt

Narragansett Plain Whole Milk Yogurt

Locally made yogurt? Does someone else hear harps? The same tent also was selling a ton of different types of cheeses, but since I don’t know much about cheese/can’t go through a brick by myself I stuck with the yogurt. For my post-run eats I like a  low-fat or greek non-fat style yogurt, but for dessert I never mind a good cream top. I also popped into the dining hall for some real lunch.

Salad Bar Veggies, Cooked Carrots, Vegan Sloppy Joes, Corn

Salad Bar Veggies, Cooked Carrots, Vegan Sloppy Joes, Corn

I don’t know how real this was; what do people thing are in vegan sloppy joe mix? It wasn’t bad, just… different. THE CORN ON THE OTHER HAND. It wasn’t from the cafe; I bought it from a farmer’s market vendor, wrapped it in a damp paper towel, and microwaved for 2 minutes. It came out juice and delicious and perfect and inspired me to go buy 4 more before my next class. Lunch was so rushed, I wanted a little something to sip and enjoy, so I grabbed a Zevia on my way to Greek.

Orange Zevia

Orange Zevia

Apparently I won a case of these on I’m An Eating Machine but was a spaz and didn’t notice. Now I’m super psyched to get these in the mail(and a stylin’ t-shirt, too!). Back to class, it was also another dud. I took intro to Greek last year but I thought I might need it again to let the material sink in. But as we were reciting the alphabet(the Greek one, not the English one), I realized I couldn’t do a year of review and went ahead and signed up for 3rd semester. Hopefully it won’t be too too rigorous.

After that I had my Epic Poetry class. This is one that I feel genuinely good about and can’t wait to start even though I know it will eat me alive be a challenge. The instructor is foreign and has a thick accent, which I find really endearing with old women. I can tell she’s going to be a hoot. The only thing is it’s an essay-heavy class and those are NOT my strong points. Maybe I’ll do the Brown version of Pass/Fail, but any way I feel good about it. This class was in the same building as the mailboxes, which I check regularly just to be let down, but amazingly something was there for me!

Mail

Mail

It was from my grandmother and had 10 dollars! How great since I spent 5 at the farmer’s market, haha. Seriously, though, they could have just saved the postage and drove it down or gave it to me next time they see me. They’re so funny pretending I’m far away. I got an email from my mom about how my dog goes room to room looking for me apparently. Wow. Way to break my heart. Now I feel like I need to go back over the weekend. When I gotback to my dorm I remembered that Frozen Yogurt I bought.

Elan Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Elan Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Sadly it melted in my freezer but I transferred it to the basement fridge. It’s not as good after it’s ordeal, but I payed for it so I’m eating it, damnit. We had the traditional walking through of the Van Winkle gates to affirm our transition in to College:

Walking Through The Gates

Walking Through The Gates

It felt…official? Honestly it went on a bit too long and I ended up snacking on a Z-Bar during the keynote address which was basically a shut-down of Creationism. Welcome to Brown.

I headed back to my computer and promptly dropped 3 classes/picked 3 more up. Right after that I was back to the bookstore. I returned 2 books, and brought back… way more than 2 books:

Books

Books

Yikes. Maybe repeating two classes wasn’t a bad idea. Oh well, I’ll be getting a good education for my money. The lines in the bookstore were Ridiculous(see how I capatlized the R there? It means business). So by the time I got back it was dinner and then some.

Green Beans, Veggie Melange, Sweet Potato, Baked Scrod

Green Beans, Veggie Melange, Sweet Potato, Baked Scrod

I’ve been a little hard on the cafe but I must admit they know how to make some good veggies that aren’t drowned in heavy sauces. And I was so excited to see fish on the line; I feel like my omega-3 stash must be depleted after being from home for so long. And apparently sweet potatos are my version of pizza, because I think even when it’s not good, it’s still pretty good(this does not apply to pizza in my opinion). I grabbed another sweet potato on the way out and ate it like an apple 🙂

After some exploring/getting his dinner with my friend, Adam, we landed back in my dorm room. All night I was having peanut butter cravings. I’ve realized since moving I only have about 1 tablespoon all day and that’s at breakfast leaving a lot to love at night.

Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Strawberry Marmalade And Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter

Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Strawberry Marmalade And Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter

Call me unpatriotic, but I was very annoyed when the president wouldn’t stop talking. I’m trying to catch up on last seasons Grey’s Anatomy and it wasn’t even on because of him. Grr, hopefully they’ll put those episodes on TV soon. This jar might also have been twice as full before I went to bed.

Cocoa Roasted Almonds

Cocoa Roasted Almonds

Dangerous yet delicious to keep around. Actually, they’re quite healthy because they aren’t coated in chocolate but cocoa, making these low sugar, high fat, fiber, and protein. I read a bit of the Iliad before going to bed; I forgot how challenging that book was. I ended up falling asleep way before I expected. I’ve been so tired lately but I guess that’s to be expected.

This morning I ran 5.5 miles. I’m definitely annoyed by these hills and not knowing the good running paths but that will all improve in time I suppose. When I got back I was definitely on a cinnamon-raisin kick. I could have taken a bunch of raisins and shoved them in my mouth if I had any. Instead I settled for what I had on hand:

Yogurt With Mushed Banana And Mountain Medley Granola, Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Cherry Butter And White Chocolate Cherry Almond Butter

Yogurt With Mushed Banana And Mountain Medley Granola, Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Cherry Butter And White Chocolate Cherry Almond Butter

I opened the Mountain Medley granola for the first time and it was granola-great. I love how the sweetness comes from raisins and craisins and not sugar roasted in–that’s the way granola should be. It’s a little light on the NUTrition, though.

Today I have 3rd semester Greek, which I’m hoping I’m prepared for. After that, though, my day is open(thankfully). I think I’ll try and get some laundry done and some grocery shopping. The latter I have MUCH more experience at than the former. Hopefully there won’t be a “why is this sock bright green” moment.

Dark Chocolate Almonds

Dark Chocolate Almonds

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Where’s The Bread?

Posted on August 25, 2009. Filed under: Book Review, Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

G’morning, G’morning. Anyone else feeling amazingly chipper today? Maybe it’s just because I’m sitting down to the best breakfast ever right now, but you’ll have to wait to see what it is(or, ya know, use the scrolly thing in the middle of your mouse).

Anyway, yesterday at around 11 I got a case of the munchies.

Peanut Butter Z-Bar

Peanut Butter Z-Bar

Anybody seeing the irony in this photo? Last week I finished up In Defense Of Food. Overall, the book really resonated well with me and taught me a lot more on subjects I thought I already knew most about. It’s certainly a worth while read, and has a great message–eat food. In fact, for the entire weekend I didn’t eat a single bar; the most processed thing I ate was probably frozen waffles or ice cream, but besides that I ate all fresh food. But while I do agree this is generally how we should eat, I feel like giving up bars and other like foods would be a bit reckless, especially ones made with quality ingredients and that are nutrient-fortified. We’re all going to be caught at times when “food” is back home in our refrigerators and we’re out on the road somewhere and have little to turn to. And then there are times like this when I simply wanted the peanut butter Z-bar, because I knew what it tasted like and that’s what I was looking for. So while I’m always going to be trying to eat more food, I’m not ready to pass up anything just yet.

After that I got caught up on my daily reads(aka all ya’lls blog). Seriously, what would any of us do if we all stopped posting for a day? I know I would be bored. The newspaper–no thanks. And Rachael Ray and Food Network only come out with 1 magazine a month, so I’d get pretty bored.

For lunch I really switched it up and forced myself to make something a little different from the routine. Think of it as taking “the lunch challenge”.

Tuna Salad With Raspberries, Croutons, Goat Cheese, And Sunflower Seeds

Tuna Salad With Raspberries, Croutons, Goat Cheese, And Sunflower Seeds

First I layed down some trusty spinach for a base. Protein? Check. Added 1/2 a can of tuna. Then I threw in some of the fresh raspberries yours truly picked, and crumbled up 1/2 an ounce of the hickory smoked goat cheese from the Farmer’s Market(oh yeah, this is as amazing as you’d think). Then I toasted up some of the Trader Joe’s 10-grain bread for crouton crunch. And lastly I took up a note from our favorite Everythingtarian and threw on some sunflower seeds, since apparently no salad is complete without them(and she was oh so right). I really know nothing about dressing, so I stirred up some tart yogurt, zesty lemon, and sweet agave on the side. It wasn’t quite a “dressing”, but now I know how to make lemon yogurt which I’m psyched about.

After that we stopped by the post office to fill out a form for a new passport. I don’t have a driver’s license because I’m… lazy and a city boy. So as my only source of ID it’s important my passport doesn’t expire, which it does in a month. They took my picture again and it actually wasn’t bad. i’ve always been worried somebody was going to call me out because I don’t look a thing like the fat 12 year old I was when I got my first passport.

Next up we went to Stop & Shop. In the circular it says Alvarado St. Bread is on sale this week for 3 dollars a loaf. Anyone ever try this? The website makes it seem so good and grainy. If you can’t tell by the way I’m writing, they didn’t have it 😦 I couldn’t even stock up on plain yogurt or oats since they were way too much there. I did get some other sale items though:

Stop And Shop Loot

Stop And Shop Loot

Stevia In The Raw is my sweetener of choice. Buffalo Bleu Kettle Chips are D-lish. You can actually taste the hint of bleu cheese, plus it’s all natural so you know it’s not some weird artificial bleu cheese flavoring. Awesome, no? I found 2 mini Bear Naked granolas. I’ve never tried them before since the big containers can be so expensive, but I figured I’d try these to see if they’re worth it. I got some aged swiss for super-sandwich lunches, and lastly some cocoa roasted almonds. These are amazing–perfect for when you want some cocoa but not quite chocolate. I had them in 100 calorie pack form before; I’ll be doing some serious damage with the big containers now. Oh, and of course there was one more (creamy) purchase:

Breyer's All Natural Smooth And Dreamy Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

Breyer's All Natural Smooth And Dreamy Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream

We made a lot of space in the freezer yesterday so I thought I’d reward us. Mint is the perfect summer flavor; it freshens the palate and doesn’t feel to heavy. When I first scooped this I was a little concerned. It had almost a chalky texture. i couldn’t figure out if this wasn’t right or I was too used to frozen yogurt and soy products. I got it all in the cup, and nature intervened: My dog peed on the rug so I had to clean that up. When I finally got to the ice cream, it was slightly melted, which did wonders for the texture and the flavor. Suddenly it really was smooth and creamy, and the peppermint flavor definitely increased. I loved the chocolate chips in this, too, since they were nothing like the chocolate chips in Breyer’s Mint Chocolate Yogurt. These were thick, dark, and flavorful. Overall I loved this flavor, and the fact that it’s low fat just means I’ll be burning through the quart way faster.

I was still a little bummed about the bread, so I did some research and called another Stop And Shop down the road. They said they had it so we hopped back into the car. And guess what–no luck. We went to ANOTHER Stop And Shop which was just a mile further, and again nada. I’m definitely taking a break from Stop And Shop until I cool off from this experience. When we got home something was waiting for me.

A Lonely Unopened Package

A Lonely Unopened Package

Partially Defatted Peanut Flour, Recipes, And A Letter From The National Peanut Board

Partially Defatted Peanut Flour, Recipes, And A Letter From The National Peanut Board

Remember how I came in 2nd in the Peanut Butter Boy’s competition? Lauren from the National Peanut Board congratulated me on my recipe and was kind enough to send me this to bake with. Not only that, my recipe might be featured in a future e-newsletter! Needless to say, I was pretty stoked. How many people are contacted by a National board? I can’t wait to start using this flour. Peanut flour is high in protein and fiber and great for athletes to cook with for that reason. Some of the recipes I was sent look great and I’ll be sure to be featuring them as I make them. I celebrated by getting a little nutty:

Emerald's Cocoa Roasted Almonds

Emerald's Cocoa Roasted Almonds

Ok, they aren’t quite peanuts but I’m sure the National Peanut Board and National Almond Board are on good terms with one another. Dinner was some delicious whole foods.

Chicken With Steak Sauce And Mustard, Broccoli, Yukon Gold Potato With Salsa, And Black Cherry Zevia

Chicken With Steak Sauce And Mustard, Broccoli, Yukon Gold Potato With Salsa, And Black Cherry Zevia

Mmm doesn’t the mustard on top of the steak sauce unmixed look so appetizing? My messy fork skills soon took care of that. The yukon gold potato was from the farmer’s market on Saturday, and the bright yellow inside was a testament to how fresh and nutritious it was. And see the glass of what looks like water in the top right? That’s the last Zevia flavor I had to try, the black cherry. You’d think with a name like that it’d be… black? I was confused too, but this was one of my favorite flavors. It was deliciously tart with a splash of soda-pep. It reminded me of cherry sprite if there is such a thing.

After dinner the ‘rents wanted to walk around the neighborhood. For once I really wasn’t feeling a walk, but who knows if that would be the last time before I go off to college so I signed myself up. Not bad, but I was totally waiting to dig into this the whole way around:

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

So Delicious Snickerdoodle Ice Cream

Boo for this not being available in quart size; my pint’s almost out 😦 I’ve got to say this is one of my favorite flavors of ice cream ever. I really wish a non-dairy free company would make it because I have a friend going to Brown with me who’s lactose intolerant and I know he’s going to be all over this if I keep it in my freezer 😛  Going into day 17 of straight running, I needed some more carbs clearly.

Banana Bread With Midnight Moo Sauce

Banana Bread With Midnight Moo Sauce

I’ve officially got a hold going on the bananas in this house so that they ripen and I can make another loaf. I like how the recipe had some chocolate chips but not a ton; that way you could eat it plain and have it still be a healthy and delicious breakfast, or you could add a little chocolate syrup and have a healthy and delicious dessert. Before I went to bed I had some english muffin lovin’ and a Maple Morning Cookie resurrected from the freezer, hoping the flax and wheat germ would work some magic on my legs overnight.

I woke up feeling a lot better and more willing to run than I thought I’d be. I did my favorite 6-miler, which is always easy to push through because it’s 3 miles to a church, around the town square, and straight back. I like telling myself I’m “half way there” when I’m half way to the church, which makes the whole thing seem shorter. I felt Larger Than Life at the start. When I started hitting them hills, I definitely could’ve Use Somebody, but I kept going. By the end I was soo hot and sweaty that I was making the Good Girls Go Bad. I ended up doing it in 48:15, which I liked.

I promised a rocksome breakfast right?

Peanut Butter Yogurt With Banana Nut Granola, English Muffin With Mighty Maple And Pineapple Banana Rum Jam, 1/2 A Banana

Peanut Butter Yogurt With Banana Nut Granola, English Muffin With Mighty Maple And Pineapple Banana Rum Jam, 1/2 A Banana

Anyone else see Mickey Mouse? Lemme speed ya through this: The english muffin and spreads are some oldies but goodies. What’s really innovative here it the left ear peanut butter yogurt. Yep, you read that right. For my first experiment with PB flour, I mixed 2 tablespoons with 6 ounces plain yogurt and a stevia packet(because the yogurt on its own is really tart). The result is something from the peanut gods. It has a  deliciously light, delicate peanut flavor, a lot like my favorite frozen yogurt from JP Licks. Not only that, but the nutrition is incredible. The yogurt(sans granola) has 16.5 grams of protein! Peanut flour has gotten something of a wrap as pb lite or diet food, but I think used properly it’s much more athlete food than anything else. In fact, one day it might be seen as a “super food”. Anybody else tired of being told to eat random berries harvested from the middle of nowhere that cost more than a pretty penny? Hopefully more American companies will get on the trend and mill some peanuts making this an affordable household flour alternative.

P.S. Speaking of yogurt go here if you love your greek yogurt(and, let’s face it, there’s about a 95% chance that you do): http://heatherbakes.com/2009/08/24/chobani-review-and-giveaway/

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