Marriages Made In Heaven

Posted on May 30, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

News all over Twitter is that there was a marriage made in heaven today for one blogger. Allow me to steal that and totally abuse it for thematic purposes.

I think it’s well documented that me and chocolate have a deep, deep love affair. Would you bet it’s so great that I was willing to run 5 miles down the road for a gluten-free brownie at 11am? The only problem was that the store opened at noon. Whoops! At least I got a good run out of the deal?

Raw Salad Corn Tomatoes Olive

It’s great that raw veggies and Summer salads marry so easily because then I get the best of both worlds. I haven’t liked corn for the longest time, until I tried it raw today thanks to Lauren(who just rocked a Boston half-marathon!). Anyway, raw corn = amazing. It was like adding sugar to the salad and went so well with olives and olive cashew nut cheese. Yum!

Purely Decadent Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Chocolate + Peanut butter. Yes. As much as I want to marry chocolate, I’ll allow it to have its mistress. This has to be one of my favorite ice creams. It’s so perfect, I don’t feel the need at all to try to make it myself. I will just bask in its c+pb perfection.

Homemade BBQ Sauce

If I’m like a married person in anyway, it’s that I’m always over a hot stove. Today, I decided to make my own BBQ sauce! The recipe isn’t perfect or flavorful enough yet, so I’ll keep it in my pocket. But it’s so much fun to make your own condiments, I have to say, you should go out(or in) and try it!

Chobani With Peanut Butter And Local Raw Honey

Is polygamy legal? Because peanut butter totally has a thing going with local raw honey. As it should; Nothing beats the sweet + salty combo in my books. I ate that over a plain Chobani because really lacking on the protein as of late and that definitely helped to be a filler.

There was also an apple consumed before dinner. That is not invited to the wedding. At all. The last few apples I’ve had have just been way too sub-par. I think we need a “break” like Ross and Rachel.

Homemade BBQ Tofu, Sweet Potato Fries

Everything came together perfect for dinner. It was a symphony of tofu marinated in BBQ sauce and grilled along with some salty sweet potato fries. The onions that were in the sauce got strained out but rather than throw them away, I used them as a topping. Brilliant! They were oh-so flavorful. Have I mentioned how much I love onions as of late? I think that’s another (stinky-breath) marriage right there.

Sweet or salty? Even with my abundant love for chocolate and ice cream, I simply couldn’t live without salty food(hello, Indian cuisine!). That’s probably why I’d sooner opt for a bottle of soy sauce than BBQ sauce. I know they make reduced sodium; do they make enhanced sodium?

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Disgusting

Posted on May 26, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Warning: I’m not going for the pretty post today.

You could ask, when do I ever go for the pretty post? Well played, well played. But everything today was just pretty gross and disgusting, no matter how good it got.

The thought of eating 2 sticks of earth balance, or any fat really, grosses me out. So why do they taste so damn good in this recipe? Note to self: Don’t ever cook that rich again if you’re going to have leftovers for the next 3 days.

Running 14 miles is disgusting, especially when New England decides to warm up. Was I proud? Damn straight. But it was hot. There was cow manure involved. Every part of me got sunburned. And you get really dirty running without a shirt on. In the end, I looked like this:

Disgusting, no? I’m practicing to compete with some of Holly’s self-portraits. I’ve got a long way to go on growing out the hair and getting that kind of frizz.

The entire soda industry is–let’s face it–disgusting. There’s high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors and flavors and preservatives. And all those plastic rings kill sea-life. Not cool, Coke, not cool. Instead, I made a much cleaner version of “Sprite” for recovery: 1/2 cup lemon seltzer, 1/2 cup organic limeade, fresh lime, and some light agave nectar. Sweetness.

The raw olive “cheese” from Grezzo’s looks like a pile of poo; I’m aware. But it tastes deliciously rich in olives. And was perfect on a salad with some organic balsamic vinegar. Oh, and this is the best 2.50 you will ever spend:

Don’t look at the nutritional information; it’s not pretty. “Golden” means fried, but it’s fried by Whole Foods, so it’s magical and delicious. I love keeping one of these around for times I really just don’t feel like cooking, even if I’m taking in my daily limit of way too many things.

Sweet potatoes? Love them! But after they’ve been roasted, grilled, and sitting in the refrigerator for 3 days… There’s a reason that’s not in any recipe book.

…I don’t have any more words to defend myself. Even as a food blogger, sometimes you gotta eat a little disgustingly.

That is 6 squares of my favorite dark chocolate by Endangered Species and a pomegranate Chobani with Justin’s chocolate almond butter. The only disgusting thing here is how much chocolate I can eat in a day. If anybody ever hears of an organic chocolate eating contest, send it my way. We can split the prize money.

What’s the last thing that’s made you think “Gross!”? For me, it was the fish at the beginning of the post. It’s an Asian carp, and it’s making a move to be the next, big, sustainable seafood. Not on my plate, it isn’t.

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Mean Miles And Extra Special Blondies

Posted on May 23, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

And here I thought a party at the Museum of Science’s skyline suite what special, I had no idea the blondies I’d be cooking up today.

Endangered Species Milk Chocolate With Peanut Butter

Endangered Species Milk Chocolate With Peanut Butter

Endangered Species chocolate = amazing pre-running fuel. The milk chocolate with a hint of peanut butter let me down the first time I had it, but now I feel like I get that hint–really subtle hint.

10 Miles

10 Miles

I had fun kind of running around the town and found a new route I liked that came across a reservoir. And it just so happened to be an even number of miles! I love it when that works out. And then I was stahvin’ for a good lunch.

Sweet Potato With BBQ Beans, Tofu, And Mighty Maple

Sweet Potato With BBQ Beans, Tofu, And Mighty Maple

Finishing off a jar of Mighty Maple is always tragic; at least it’s redeemed when it’s in a killer way. A sweet potato with BBQ baked beans, raw tofu chunks, and a scoop of the good stuff. Um, yum. Am I blessed to love the texture of raw, soft tofu or what?

Red Delicious Apple

Red Delicious Apple

This afternoon snack was missing something…

365 Creamy PB

365 Creamy PB

Perfect. Who says you need to eat the peanut butter on the apple? They taste fine separate 😀

Tonight, we’re having guests over. I wanted to recreate this recipe. The result was nothing more than “special”, extra “special”. It’s gluten-free and vegan. There are specks of vanilla bean in the batter. And it just tastes damn good. How could it not(with 2 sticks of earth balance)?

Extra Special Blondies

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 sticks non-hydrogenated margarine
  • 1 cup all-purpose GF baking blend
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon xanthan gum(optional)
  • 2 tablespoons non-dairy milk
  • 2 teaspoons white vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla paste(or vanilla extract)
  • 3/4 cup dark chocolate chips

Recipe: Extra Special Blondies

Preheat your oven to 350 and let the margarine sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before working with it. Cream the margarine and the sugar in a large bowl. Sift in all ingredients from flour to xanthan gum(if using). Add the liquids and vanilla paste and mix thoroughly with a large spoon or rubber spatula. Add the chocolate chips and mix until evenly distributed. Press into an 8×8 baking pan and bake for35-40 minutes or until the center is set. Remove from the oven and let cool for 30 minutes before slicing. Makes 12 servings.

Now are those fattening, err… “special”, or what?

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Free Of Nothing; Full Of Nutrition

Posted on May 14, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Health, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I had a sobering thought on my run today. I hate “veganism”. “What? But I love all my vegan meals and recipes.” That was my next thought. But I kept going back and realizing I really do hate the label, “vegan”.

So then I asked myself “Why?”

Local Hereford Beef

Local Hereford Beef

*Note: I did not eat this today, or any meat. The only non-vegan things I had were a yogurt at breakfast and brownie made with eggs in the afternoon*

Frankly, I’ve known too many people going vegan or vegetarian to avoid certain things for “health”, things like cholesterol and animal fats. And then once a year–probably on their birthday–, they’d have a big juicy steak. “Once and a while won’t kill”. Well of course it’s not going to kill you; but no one can say the same for the cow.

I think there are a lot of ways you can be healthy without strapping on the vegetarian label and shunning things out of your life. That’s not why I eat vegan at the meals and times I do. Rather, it’s to bring certain nutrients in.

Black Beans, Daiya, Avocado, Salsa, And Spinach

Black Beans, Daiya, Avocado, Salsa, And Spinach

My lunch wasn’t healthy because of the absence of animal products; it was healthy because of the abundance of plant-based foods. That, to me, is what veganism is all about: The emphasis of a plant based diet. As much as I’d love to think that way 24/7, I’ll undoubtedly slip up sometime and look at something for being “dairy-free” or “free of animal by products”. What I really wish I could see 100% of the time is how something is free of nothing, but full of nutrition.

Gluten-Free Brownie With Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Gluten-Free Brownie With Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Of course, allergens play a role in this, too. But I would count those as a separate case. A lactose-intolerant person would eat coconut milk ice cream for a very different reason than a vegan. I’m–well–I’m neither. But I love how this tastes and feels, and do try to avoid dairy to some extent for better digestion.

Willoughby's Local Gluten-Free Brownie

Willoughby's Local Gluten-Free Brownie

And the brownie was likewise free of dairy and gluten(an allergen I do take care to avoid).

Vegan Tiger Fudge

Vegan Tiger Fudge

Desserts in general, though, I would say get a pass on ever being “healthy”. No matter how you cut it(a fudge joke), my microwave vegan chocolate fudge and microwave vegan peanut butter fudge are full of sugar. That doesn’t mean they aren’t full of flavor, either, or that you shouldn’t make them 😉

9 Miles

9 Miles

That fueled me to run around my neighborhood 8 times for a total of 9 miles. Perhaps my legume love isn’t such a terribly beneficial thing since I needed to make a pit stop into the bathroom after lap 6. At least I was close to home and didn’t go on a road run like I was thinking.

Organic Fuji Apple

Organic Fuji Apple

Organic Baby Carrots

Organic Baby Carrots

Afterwards I refueled with my lunch posted earlier, and when that wasn’t enough I added an apple. Later on, at the grocery store, I grabbed a bag of baby carrots to eat in the car(or the walk out of the store). If you went through a list of the allergens raw fruits and veggies are “free of”, we’d be here all day; it’s better to think of all the nutrition they’re “full of” in my mind. And tonight was “full of” recipes:

Sweet Potato Fries

Ingredients

  • 1 medium sized sweet potato
  • 2 teaspoons EVOO
  • salt to taste

Cut the ends off of a sweet potato. Slice all the way through horizontally. With the cut side down, make strips 1/2-3/4 inch thick. Cut those again lengthwise to make into “fry” shapes. Repeat with the other 1/2. Line a baking pan with aluminum foil. Add the fries and EVOO to the pan and massage with your hands until completely covered. Preheat an oven to 350 and bake for 60 minutes. Season to taste.

Vegan BBQ Bean Poutine

Ingredients

  • 1 serving sweet potato fries
  • 1/2 cup vegan BBQ beans
  • 1/4 cup mozzarella style Daiya
  • 2 strips tempeh bacon(optional)
  • 3 pieces fresh basil

Cook the sweet potato fries according to directions. Pile on a plate, and add on top the BBQ beans. Heat in the microwave through for about 2 minutes. Add on the Daiya and heat another 30 seconds to melt. If using, cook the tempeh bacon through until crispy according to manufacturer’s directions. Cut into small pieces and crumble on top. Garnish with basil.

Organic Pickles

Organic Pickles

Served with a side of organic pickles. Such a simple and delicious meal for one(I’m the only one home tonight). What are you full of today? I would have to say that I’m full of beans!! and also joy that I got so much on my to-do list done. The only thing I hope for this weekend to be “free of” is stress before my last final, because that’s been giving me plenty of that.

If you enjoyed my What Would You Do moment, the actual show is on at 9pm tonight on ABC so watch that!

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Naughty. Sexy. Food.

Posted on May 3, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In case you took the weekend off and are catching up

I feel like I’ve eaten everything naughty and delicious already and it’s not even 7pm. That’ll cure those Monday blues 😀

Golden Sesame Tofu, Steamed Broccoli, Raw Baby Carrots

Golden Sesame Tofu, Steamed Broccoli, Raw Baby Carrots

Because, really, what’s more naughty than golden sesame tofu ala Whole Foods?

Golden Sesame Tofu

Golden Sesame Tofu

I took a peak at the potential nutritional of this. Yeah, don’t do that; just eat it and enjoy. I love this every time. And at 2.50 it’s a cheap way to get a good meal! Fried tofu definitely doesn’t have me wanting to run a marathon right afterwards, though.

Vegan Chocolate Fudge

Vegan Chocolate Fudge

For dessert and before going to office hours I had a piece of vegan fudge. Obviously, because this has all been vegan so far, it all must have been good for me, right? Yeah, no. But so many foodgasms here.

Cashew Almond KIND Bar And Strawberry Serenity Kombucha

Cashew Almond KIND Bar And Strawberry Serenity Kombucha

For a “cleaner” snack I ate a cashew almond KIND bar(my favorite) along with a strawberry Kombucha. I definitely was not a fan of this flavor. But I was happy to get rid of a bar and a bottle as part of Project Cleanout.

Red Delicious Apple

Red Delicious Apple

An apples nice and clean, right? Not washed and non-organic. Oooo, I just keep getting dirtier.

Sweet Potato Fries, BBQ Baked Beans, Daiya Mozzarella

Sweet Potato Fries, BBQ Baked Beans, Daiya Mozzarella

And dinner was this one last naughty, dirty, uncomposed plate of deliciousness.

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

And all vegan! Oh, Daiya, I love you. And it’s all thanks to Caitlin for this flavor pairing of sweet potato and BBQ beans. 80% of the sweet potato fries were completely burnt; one of the perks of being home surely will be that, at home, the oven isn’t floors below me. And in case you were wondering, fork or fingers on the fries? It’s all dirty and all delicious, so yes and yes.

Now, really, I should do something better with my time than eat naughty foods while watching the latest Dr. Who(Daleks, again?!). In the meantime, check out Averie’s stevia giveawayGina’s iHerb giveaway, and Katie’s shopping spree.

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These Legs Were Made For Walking

Posted on May 1, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Race Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

That’s just what they do.
One of these days the legs
Are gonna walk all around you.
RISD Art Sale

RISD Art Sale

First Baptist Meeting House

First Baptist Meeting House

Downtown

Downtown

I feel like I went everywhere today, and all by foot! So much for rest day? But it was fun! I did not expect the RISD art sale to be in swing again. There was so many amazing paintings and potteries, any of which I’d have been lucky to own. When I hit downtown, Providence couldn’t have reminded me of Boston any more, and for the first time. I’ve never really seen the city like this; all my time so far has been rainy or cold but today was perfect. Of course, the reason for my walking extravaganza was this:

Registering

Registering

I can’t believe the half-marathon is just tomorrow! The nerves are starting to set in, as this will be my first “real” half-marathon. The Race For The Border was fun, but it felt more like 250 people getting together in New Hampshire to run around a bit. This feels real. The best part of the walk back was knowing that I started lunch at 9:30 and it’d be waiting for me.

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

I think I’ve hit vegan heaven.

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

Vegan Cheesy BBQ Fries And Beans

I’ve been really intrigued by Caitlin’s combination of sweet potatoes and BBQ beans. I also loved the combination of sweet potato fries and Daiya from last night so much I knew I wanted it again! Why not combine the two in a poutine-like fashion? This was divine. The flavor came through as some salty, sweet, and fatty bit of deliciousness with crisped potato fries, soft beans, and gooey Daiya. I’m going to need several more plates of this over the Summer.

Groceries

Groceries

My options for the early afternoon were work or do chores. I’d rather do chores. I walked down to Eastside Market and my little Whole Foods to get some ice cream(majorly on sale), 3lb of organic sweet potatoes, beans(dinner), a bar(my “breakfast” tomorrow), and some chocolates(longly considered and purchased enthusiastically).

Organic Pink Lady Apple

Organic Pink Lady Apple

I snacked on an organic apple for rehydrating from all the walking until I was ready for something more “desserty”.

Mint Chip And Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Mint Chip And Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

This hit the spot. I used the last of my mint Sweet Scoops frozen yogurt with a good amount of Elan’s vanilla. Cost per scoop, this is hands down the best vanilla ice cream out there. It was only $3 for a quart on sale! It’s local to New England and the flavor is absolutely fantastic; it tastes like a fresh, frothy vanilla milkshake all the time. And, of course with me, the ingredient list is rather clean.

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Vanilla Peanut Butter

As big as my chocolate tooth is, my vanilla tooth is right there with it; I had a small bowl of oatmeal with some 365 peanut butter mixed with Madhava’s vanilla agave. Vanilla makes for the best everything: peanut butter, chocolate, cookies. God bless vanilla.

Root Beer Zevia

Root Beer Zevia

And a cool Zevia beverage after returning from the dining hall with some greens for dinner. I just hope in hindsight that the concentrated erythritol or stevia here doesn’t cause any running discomfort tomorrow morning.

Hemp Oil Dressed Greens, Chickpea Salad With Raisins And Daiya

Hemp Oil Dressed Greens, Chickpea Salad With Raisins And Daiya

Chickpea Salad With Raisins And Daiya

Chickpea Salad With Raisins And Daiya

I’m really digging this Daiya. I don’t even like real mozzarella this much! I figured because it’s so flavorful it must be loaded with added sugars. Nope! There aren’t any! It puzzles me, but all I care is that it’s good. And there’s never enough room on the plate for my greens, so instead I just put them in a separate bowl after dressing with Foods Alive sweet and sassy; you can’t tell but that’s fully packed in.

OK, kiddos, since I won’t have time to post in the morning, here’s my game plan: I’m going to try to be asleep by 10:30 tonight to get hours and wake up at 6:30. After my morning routine, I’ll either be walking or getting a ride down to the starting line at 7, snack on my Amazing Grass chocolate peanut butter protein bar, and the race will start at 8. My goal is to do it in under 1:40, and my bib is 3761. Nervous? Yes. Excited? Yes. But I figure that’s all part of the recipe for success. As the best of them say, here goes nothing!

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Say Cheeese And A Giveaway!

Posted on January 12, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Giveaway, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Road trip! Route: Memory Lane

Did anybody else eat way too many of these in their childhood? It might or might not be just a New England thing; I’m not sure. Basically, these are cheese sandwich crackers with peanut butter in between. They’re not exactly health food, but at least they don’t have trans fat or HFCS(anymore at least. I have doubts about when I was a kid). OK, well I didn’t quite have these, BUT I figured out a kickassbutt way to work them into my lunch.

Cheddar Pop Chips With Smart Balance Peanut Butter

While trying out a new flavor of Pop Chips. Pretty snazzy. Plus I had real food.

Snobby Lentils And Broccoli With Nutritional Yeast

And something tall and bubbly to wash it all down.

Blueberry Pomegranate Steaz

And then I moved this all to the couch in front of the television. No, really, I did. My stomach was still feeling funky for lunch so instead of tofu I kept it simple with overcooked lentils and snobby joes over broccoli. I think I’m becoming a bigger and bigger fan of nutritional yeast; you just need to add A LOT at the time. The soda was OK but the flavor didn’t blow my mind; it mostly just tasted like green tea.

Also “just OK” was this flavor of Pop Chips. It just didn’t have that same, overly processed flavor as other cheese snacks. But maybe that’s a good thing? It’s just what I’ve come to expect from cheddar chips. What was really good was them with the peanut butter. It was just like the crackers! The sweet and salty work so well together. I might have to buy a bag of Pop Chips just for that.

After lunch and television, I started working on dinner.

Wet Ingredients

Along with the meal plan, I was making some killer cornbread. This time, I tried a variation some variations on it: I sweetened with 3 tablespoons agave nectar, accidentally poured in about twice the salt, and cut in cold pieces of Earth Balance natural butter spread at the last moment instead of mixing in the butter well.

Killer Cornbread

I actually think it might have cooked a few minutes faster, but besides that it looked and smelled the same: delicious. I also made up a rub for the chicken.

BBQ Chicken Rub

BBQ Chicken Rub

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Combine the ingredients in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt, if desired. Rub over chicken before cooking.

Marinating Chicken

It might technically be a marinade. I’m not sure. But if it’s a problem for you, please take it up with my lawyers. After that I rewatched the newest episode of Unwrapped(because, really, you need to see it twice to let it sink in). As much as I hate to eat bars at home, I was craving something dense and chewy, much like a granola bar. It was that or cut into the cornbread early.

Nature's Path Peanut Butter Optimum Energy Bar

I won this bar from Nature’s Path‘s facebook page and had no reason to try it until now. It definitely wasn’t very peanut buttery, but at least it had peanuts in it, as well as fiber and protein. Probably didn’t need all that added sugar for sitting on the house and converting recipes, but c’est la vie. After a good while, I got a start on dinner by putting broccoli and the chicken in the oven, and made a snack while I waited for that.

Vanilla Bean Greek Yogurt With Organic Strawberry Conserves

Vanilla bean sugar makes everything feel special 🙂 And I just noticed my strawberry is organic, which has me far more excited than it should. Now I feel like I’m saving the earth every time I have some, though that’s probably not the case.

Killer Cornbread, BBQ Chicken, Roasted Broccoli Fries

Killer Cornbread, BBQ Chicken, Roasted Broccoli Fries

Finally, some decent broccoli fries. The perfection comes in the patience; these roasted for over an hour. The chicken was really good, but it would have been better had we had the grill to use. Still, the notes of cinnamon and cayenne were perfect. And the cornbread came out much better than the last time, probably because last time I forgot to add 1/2 the sweetener. This batch we decided was definitively more “corny” due to the agave nectar.

You should enter this giveaway for Amy’s Kitchen products right after entering my…

Chobani Giveaway!

Now that you’ve seen me cook with Chobani, here’s your chance to win some. Would you like to win a case of fruit Chobani? I love their fruit flavors because fruit is always the number 2 ingredient right behind milk(except for with the raspberry flavor). To enter, go to the Chobani website and write in one of the recipes that looks good to you. For bonus entries:

I’ll randomly choose a winner Friday at 8pm(which spells Ghost Whisperer time in this house) so get your comments in by then and good luck!

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Leftover Loaf

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

When it comes to leftovers, I usually have a love/hate relationship with them. At first, I dread the idea of having anything bearing over me in the future, like a time bomb in the fridge. After I get over the acceptance, I make it my mission to take the same food and make a completely unique and delicious dish with a layer of flavors. With my loaf, however, it was an entirely different story.

Vegan Meatloaf, Broccoli, Ketchup

I was looking forward to eating this vegan meatloaf just the way it was from the moment I made it. I mean, it’s a loaf, after all. It’s bound to taste better after resting a few days. I can’t say it was life-changingly different from how it first tasted, but I will say I enjoyed this very very much, and know I’ll be committing the recipe to memory so I can whip it up without turning my computer on. On the side I had some steamed broccoli and Trader Joe’s organic ketchip, as well as some of these:

Barbeque Pop Chips

More Pop Chips! I can not tell you how excited I was to try this flavor after hearing so much of it on other blogs. My opinion? Well, the Barbeque ones were by no means bad, but I definitely had higher hopes and liked the sour cream & onion ones way more. Oh well, there are some flavors left that might surprise me, too.

Also a slight disappointment? The death on Days Of Our Lives. I mean, death should never be something to look forward too… OK, who am I kidding? TV show drama is the bomb. But they kind of copped out by killing a character who hasn’t been present for 2+ years. Boo. They need another serial killer. OK, now that sounds weird(but it’s true).

Anyway, today I had plans for the afternoon; at my old high school they have an annual alumni basketball game where essentially all the alumni from every graduating class is invited to come play or watch, and then go bowling afterwards. My basketball talents are probably as good as Tiger Woods(I was a fencer throughout high school), but I was game for coming and chatting. On the car ride in to the city I had a chocolate tooth strike.

Amazing Grass Chocolate Whole Food Energy Bar

Errign gave me this bar as part of her giveaway that I won, which I reviewed here. She figured me out so well 🙂 Besides the obvious(that they’re chocolate), these are amazing because they’re also raw, alkaline, and, most amusingly, green! That was definitely a surprise the first time I bit in and looked down.

I got to the game once it had already started, and was a bit surprised at how few people showed up. No love for the alma mater? Thankfully, there were some good friends from my class standing around who I caught up with while we watched the game. Oddly, it didn’t feel like much had changed over time; I think it’s the magic of connecting/reconnecting with Facebook and the internet. After an hour, we started heading back home, but made a pit stop at Shaws.

Barney Butter

I had heard Barney Butter was now at Shaws but checked the one closer to me to no luck. But in the city it was another story! Frankly, it was more than I normally care to pay for any nut butter, let alone one that’s not even flavored. However, I justified it in my mind by using money from Christmas that I specifically set aside for “fun” food purchases and the fact that I haven’t been and might not be in Boston for over 4 months. We hopped back in the car for a ride home through rush hour traffic. My, how I did not miss this. It was surprisingly light for a snowy evening, but we still got home a little late and I just wanted fast food.

Vegan Meatloaf

Greek Yogurt With Pumpkin Butter And More Pumpkin Butter

To quote Ms. Spears, Oops, I did it again! I said I was a food blogger, never that I wasn’t repetitive 😉 That was the last of the vegan meatloaf, which went down a little to fast and is now sitting a little too heavy. And because I hadn’t had yogurt or very much protein all day, I opted for that instead of veggies on the side. The pumpkin butter(from a local farm), kind of tasted like baby food. But I kind of wasn’t complaining, because I’ve been thinking about hitting up that aisle for some interesting oat concoctions. And now there’s a new Ghost Whisperer on, which is kind of 10 times better than making a fool of myself bowling. This loaf better not loaf around in my stomach too long because I could use some weekend dessert 🙂

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Ifs And Thens

Posted on January 7, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If you’re going to cook something for lunch that’s already going to make your breath smell bad…

Lightlife Savor Chick'n Smart Tenders

Then you might as well make the whole meal a stanky mess.

Savory Chick'N Tenders, Garlic Steamed Brussels, Sour Cream & Onion Popchips

A delicious, stanky mess, that is. That would be the tenders, brussels sprouts I steamed and then ground dried garlic on top of with sea salt, and a bag of Pop Chips which I got in the mail yesterday to review.

If you’re going to make a “healthy” potato chip…

Sour Cream & Onion Pop Chips

Then you better make them tasty. And boy do they! I think I’m in love with this flavor. This actually had me wondering: Who am I? Normally, I don’t like chips because they’re not really filling and poorly flavored. But THESE were absolutely delicious. And healthy? I’m still enamored about that last one. This was the first flavor I tried, but I’m 98% sure I’m buying a big bag of those from the classy Targe when I’ve had them all.

If you’re going to end a Thursday show with 2 cliffhangers, Days Of Our Lives, then you can expect I’ll be watching tomorrow’s episode.

If you’re going to make a healthy, vegan cookie…

Vegan Pumpkin Molasses Cookies

(Those would be my 4th or 5th batch of the vegan pumpkin molasses cookies adapt from Holly’s recipe made with erythritol instead of 1/2 a cup turbinado sugar) Then you should balance that with sugary maple cupcakes and dream of the cream cheese and butter you can slather on them.

Maple Syrup Cupcakes

I intended to make my vegan maple-apple morning cookies. Then I decided I didn’t want oats or apples in them. Then the flaxseed and wheat germ came out and an egg went in. Whoops. Then they magically poured themselves into lined cupcake tins and cooked for 16-18 minutes. Funny how that happens, isn’t it? I was drooling thinking about the maple cream cheese frosting or vegan maple buttercream frosting I could whip up(literally) for them, but after giving it thought I’m thinking these are going to hit the freezer and that would not work out.

If you’re going to be in the kitchen for 4 hours and not sit down…

Vegan Whole Wheat Cinnamon Roll With Smart Balance Peanut Butter

Then you need handheld carbs and fat to keep going. 2:30-6:30. I think at some point my mind skipped out and found a place to sit and still hasn’t came back(hence me going for a gimmicky post to bemuse us all).

If you’re going to be handling raw food…

Raw Chicken Breast

Then chicken is not the one to be tempted to lick the fork after working with. I was thinking of Twittering my perils, but didn’t know what to say/didn’t want salmonella on my keyboard.

If you’re going to dream of peanut butter, maple, and bacon for your entire life…

Hickory Maple Peanut Butter

Then you might as well make a hickory maple peanut butter. This was my final kitchen work-up, and I’m a little disappointed. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, and this one’s all over the place with consistancy. Maybe it just needs to sit a while.

If you’re going to leave me in charge of dinner…

Cherry Maple Chicken, Killer Cornbread, Parsnip And Carrot Fries With BBQ Dipping Sauce

Then you know it’s going to be maple flavored something. The chicken came out amazing(totally tooting my own horn here). But seriously, it was juicy and cooked just for the right amount of time, with a delicate sweetness. I saw cherry chiken on Jess’ blog and thought it sounded good. The fries never really crisped up unfortunately. And the killer cornbread? Still killer.

If you’re going to be hungry after your plate of food…

Pink Lady Apple

Then a fruit or vegetable is a smart call. Not a smart call? Going back for more chicken. OK, this wasn’t exactly unsmart(kind of like how that’s not exactly a word). But I like to eat 3oz of meat and be satisfied with that. But when I was still hungry and there was no fries, the chicken was way more appealing than leftover cornbread, and I figured a little extra of really good meat that I cooked myself wasn’t going to kill. Still had to have an apple after that, and now it’s sitting in me like a brick. Joy.

If I’m going to be posting at 7:52pm, then I better get out of my work clothes, take out my contacts, and figure out what shows are still on this season.

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Finding Groceries And Motivation.

Posted on January 7, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I love it when title just right themselves. It saves me from trying to be witty and failing. This one totally applies to my past 16 hours. Right after blogging last night, we made a midnight(err, 7:30pm) Whole Foods trip. It was simpler to do this with our schedules these days and we needed meals for the next few nights. We went to the Framingham Whole Foods and now I have to wonder: How long has it been since I’ve been there? Because there was a lot of new finds. First we stopped at Stop And Shop to get more pumpkin, and 2 things caught my eye.

TRUwhip At Stop And Shop

Soap Opera Digest

Stop And Shop now sells TRUwhip and for cheap! Unfortunately, the holidays are over but if you have any excuse to buy some, do! It’s so good and keeps in your freezer. And apparently I’m in for a “shocking death” sometime this week. If I write a really nasty and angry blog post around 2:05 tomorrow, assume I wasn’t happy with who died 😦 Then we went to Whole Foods where I basically ran around like a chicken without a head. They always ay go grocery shopping Wednesday nights and it’s so true! There was no one there(except me, of course). And I just wanted to get things and get out so I could go to bed. But look at all the new products I found!

Caramel And Chocolate Oikos

Luna Protein Bars

Clif Fruit And Nut Strips

Clif Fruit And Nut Strips

The new Oikoi(Oikos in plural in Greek) are out! Like I said, I don’t know why these are so exciting to me since I could theoretically put chocolate and caramel over a plain Oikos, but for some reason they are(I didn’t end up buying one though). And the new Clif bars are here, too! Even though they weren’t on sale, I couldn’t resist picking one out “just to try”. I went with the cookie dough Luna because I love me some cookie dough. We saved so much on coupons and sales, it was ridiculous! The cashier actually commented and wanted to know how we were doing it 😉 All you need to do is cut from the Whole Deal flier and wait for the sales to match. There was one thing I payed for myself not on sale or with a coupon.

Burnt Sugar Chocolate Fudge

I’ve been having a major fudge craving. I was thinking about making my own vegan version, but after realizing all the powdered sugar I’d need, it seemed so much simpler to pay someone else to make it for me. This should be delicious. If I did make a vegan version, I would use this:

Soy Free Earth Balance

The kind people at Earth Balance sent me some coupons to try their version of an all-natural vegan butter spread, and with my first coupon I picked out this one which I’ve seen on Heather’s blog a lot. A solid fat has a lot of advantages in cooking and baking that liquid doesn’t so this should be fun to play with. And it has no cholesterol because it’s vegan–score.

Steaz Soda And Organic Whole Wheat Pasta

I think my dad was more giddy about the savings we got than I was. The pasta is normall $3 a pound, but they were on sale for $2 and Whole Foods had a $1 coupon off two, so we got BOTH for $3. And the Steaz is normally around $4.49 for a 4-pack, but are on sale for $2.66 this week, and there’s a buy 1 get 1 in the Whole Deal. So instead of $9 for both, we got both for $2.66. That is some savings! We also got regular stuff like chicken and beef for dinners(both on sale). After everything was put away, I had a new chocolate to sample and review.

Vivani Organic Dark Chocolate With Lemon

Vivani sent me some of their products to try and review and lemon was just what I was craving. They’re a European country that makes their chocolate with only 3 or 4 ingredients and no soy lecithin. If you’ve never looked, that’s a common emulsifier in American chocolate, so this is more friendly to people who are allergic to or intolerant of soy. This flavor was really good; the lemon wasn’t super loud like I was hoping, but then again no one would want to bite into chocolate and feel like they’re sucking on a lemon. I loved the flavor of the 70% dark chocolate which makes me excited to try that one soon.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple

A little later I needed something nutty and melty so I made this with a new can of pumpkin. Yum! It hit the spot. After watching Hugh Jackman on Jay Leno I tried to get to bed, but no dice. Ever have it when you’re just so ready to start the next day you can shut off your mind to end this one? That’s how I felt like last night. And the fact that I almost napped during Gettysburg didn’t help. After 40 minutes of turning I decided hot food would help.

Tempeh With Quick BBQ Sauce

Who craves tempeh at 11:40? Apparently, I do. It was so good with a little BBQ sauce(ketchup, liquid smoke, and mustard). I turned on Conan and fell asleep to that, and amazingly wasn’t to tired when I woke up at 7:30. Now for the motivation part: Yesterday, I was completely lazy all day and did nothing. There’s nothing wrong with that, and in fact I think it made me more excited to get things done today and how! I wrote a to-do list before I went to bed detailing as much as I could. First up was my workout; I decided to do my core followed by 200 flights. After the muscle-building power moves of the core, I reached for a snack to eat for the cardio of the stairs.

Cookie Dough Luna Protein

Ho-Ly-Crap. This bar was amazing! It was so good, I had to give it a 10/10. The flavor for once was a perfect rendition of cookie dough. And the nutrition was just what I like during a workout: some sugars, a good deal of whole proteins, minerals to be absorbed, and sodium for replenishing. Really, I couldn’t stop thinking about this for the hour I was climbing(that and pumping along to embarrassing songs like Cowboy Casanova and Hey, Soul Sister). What I also loved was it was the perfect size to let me cool down and shower before making breakfast without feeling in a rush. That way, when I had breakfast, it was just how I wanted it to be.

Cinnamon Banana Oatmeal With Maple Walnut Butter

Chobani With Raspberry Jam

Sometimes there’s nothing better than simple yogurt topped with simple jam–fruity and delicious. I meant to make banana goodness bread oats which would have involved vanilla powder and vanilla stevia but I forgot(whoops) and instead it was simple banana and cinnamon. That was good, but not as flavorful. On top I mixed together Artisana raw walnut butter with maple butter from New Hampshire for some nutty sweetness.

1/7/10 List

See? There really is a list, for today anyway. I love how my day is broken up: Workout, Shower, Breakfast, Lunch, Baking, Dinner, Dessert. That pretty much sums me up 🙂 And I’m doing so good! Right now I’ve done everything I was supposed to, except having banana oatmeal instead of pumpkin. Well, we can’t all be perfect, right 😉

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