The Earth Will Forgive Me

Posted on April 22, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Rant | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

*I don’t think google reader has yet picked up this morning’s post at the time I’m writing this. I’m hoping this was just an individual problem, but if it persists I’ll look into it*

So, if I was supposed to “celebrate” the earth in some way today, the earth is going to have to forgive me. To be honest, I find a lot of the notions put forth about Earth Day a little silly. The whole thing is counterproductive: we build up so much about recycling and being green this 1 time a year that it’s as if to say we aren’t expected to do this all the time. We are.

3 things have really rubbed me the wrong way today

  • Having to go down to the bank this morning to cancel my current card and request a new one to be sent to me in 5-7 business days. Looks like I won’t be purchasing any peanut butter online in that time(but maybe that’s a good thing). Oh, at least while I was down there I bought a gingerade kombucha. No need for the day to totally suck, right?
Gingerade Kombucha

Gingerade Kombucha

  • Cookies/Bars that use banana as a binder. Don’t ask me why but I hate these and I’ve been seeing them everywhere recently. If you made them and have been eating them and love them, that’s all that matters. Personally, I’ve never had a baking success with a banana besides banana goodness bread, and even that relies on eggs.
  • The idea that eating vegetarian today at all has to do with “celebrating Earth Day”. I don’t know how to feel about this one other than like it’s a personal attack saying you can’t eat meat and also be green. You can. You can  also be a vegan who litters. Shocker. I happily and greenily ate my naturally-raised, grass-fed burger for lunch today.
Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Hash With Olive Oil, Spinach

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Hash With Olive Oil, Spinach

(Not so) funny story. When I got to class, my friend Alex knocked this all over the floor :-/ I really didn’t have anything else to eat, so I just ate it anyway, hoping things were clean enough(most actually went onto her purse). Was that green? I don’t know. But at least it still tasted good. I tossed the sweet potatoes in EVOO after they grilled in my pan for added fat and flavor. Delicious. Since I wasn’t even all that hungry to begin with, this held me over well into the afternoon.

Alter-Eco Dark Chocolate Quinoa Bar

Alter-Eco Dark Chocolate Quinoa Bar

I whole-heartedly believe that the best way to be green is with our shopping cart and the foods we buy. That’s why so often I look for good companies like Alter Eco who not only make tasty chocolates but use fair-trade, organic ingredients. This particular flavor is not my favorite(I hate crunchies in my chocolate), but I’m still working on project clean out.

Organic Pink Lady Apple

Organic Pink Lady Apple

I also snacked on an organic apple. As I’ve said in posts before, I don’t always by local or organic produce, simply because it’s not affordable 100% of the time. If there’s a sale, or it’s a small cost extra or something, I’ll gladly buy organic, even choosing a pink lady over my beloved red delicious. I’ll eat pink to be green.

Dinner was something special tonight. I’m going home for the weekend for an event tomorrow night and then one Friday, so my dad came down to pick me up and start moving things home. On the way, he grabbed take out from Garden Grille that I placed. I tried a new dish: their vegan and gluten-free baked macaroni and cheese.

Gluten-Free, Vegan Baked Mac N Cheese With Broccoli And Mushrooms And Tempeh Bacon

Gluten-Free, Vegan Baked Mac N Cheese With Broccoli And Mushrooms And Tempeh Bacon

How did it taste? Honestly, I just uploaded the picture and need to start packing the car, so you’ll have to wait until tomorrow 😉

What’s something you do year round that’s green? Proceeds for my favorite chocolate bar by Endangered Species go towards rain forest preservation. I wonder how many trees the 6 I’ve bought in the past week have saved… But seriously, I do believe my greenest contribution takes place in the market, and I take pride in that. Today, in fact, I signed up for a program next Fall to get fresh produce from local farmers weekly through my college. If that ain’t green, neither is broccoli.

Perhaps more controversially, Do you see eating green and eating vegetarian as one in the same? I can picture an indirect connection being made between the two. But to directly relate one another is, I think, invalid.

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Picture It: Javaberry

Posted on April 17, 2010. Filed under: Picture It | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Food holds memories. Those make the dishes ten times better and ten times tastier. And yet it’s hard to know on a blog just what someone is thinking when they put flavors together unless they’re willing to share it all. That’s why I’m starting a new category of posts, ala Sophia Petrillo, called “Picture It”s.

Picture it: Prom night Junior year. After the prom, I end up at a friends house for an after party with 40 or so friends. There’s an open fire, cookies, chips, s’mores, everything legal(yeah, yeah. We weren’t a very troublesome crowd, but something tells me that’s a good thing). I didn’t even plan to stay the whole night, but by 1am I was convinced by my good friend and hostess. After too many games of midnight Hide N’ Seek(who does this?!), I crashed sometime around 5am in front of Bend It Like Beckham. The next day, still in a cookie coma, no one cared for a very nutritious breakfast, if it’s even breakfast at 11:30. Instead, we took a very short walk to Dairy Joy.

Of course, when there’s an ice cream shop virtually in someone’s front yard, you have to throw yourself at their mercy and get what they suggest. The “favorite flavor” couldn’t have sounded weirder: Javaberry. A blend of raspberry and coffee ice creams. Really? Could that possible be good? No. It was fantastic. What a random but delectable combination, one that I had never had again, until today.

Black Raspberry And Coffee Frozen Yogurts

Black Raspberry And Coffee Frozen Yogurts

That would be Elan’s decaf cappuccino frozen yogurt and Sweet Scoops‘ black raspberry frozen yogurt. Again, the combination was eerily magnificent. How could these two flavors work? They just do. And when I had the Sweet Scoops‘ black raspberry the first time, I thought it wasn’t sweet enough. I take that back. This was perfectly fruity and sweet. But I did more today than just eat ice cream.

Chocolove Raspberry Dark Chocolate

Chocolove Raspberry Dark Chocolate

I ate chocolate, too. Right before hitting the gym, I snacked on the last few pieces of a raspberry dark chocolate bar and ran out the door. It’s been rainy/cloudy all weekend, so I stuck with the gym. It turns out I picked a perfect time for television, and I was really able to get into my “groove”.

12 Miles In 1:46:08

12 Miles In 1:46:08

These 12 miles truly felt effortless I could have kept going, if I really had to, which leads me to feel confident for my half-marathon in 2 weeks from tomorrow. And when I was done, I went straight to work on lunch. I was craving chickpeas, so I tossed some with honey, water, and garlic and tossed them in an oven to roast at 425 while I showered. My lunch ended up having 3 forms of chickpeas. Obsession?

Roasted Garlic Chickpeas And Garlic Over Greens

Roasted Garlic Chickpeas And Garlic Over Greens

Steamed Broccoli With Garlic, Hummus Chips With Hummus

Steamed Broccoli With Garlic, Hummus Chips With Hummus

My breath was not pretty after this meal, but I loved it nonetheless. On the salad was just the roasted chickpeas given a little flavor with garlic and honey, as well as some roasted garlic from the cafeteria. I steamed some broccoli and added ground garlic, and had “hummus chips” with hummus. The chips are made completely with garbanzo bean flour and baked with garlic and olive oil. Like I said, I think I was having a flavor obsession.

In between lunch and dinner was when I had the Javaberry creation. I also did some work and made an impulse online purchase. Aren’t those fun? I’ll be sure to share on that in a little time…

Cheese Burger, Roasted And Grilled Sweet Potato With Tumeric, Cinnamon, And Sea Salt

Cheese Burger, Roasted And Grilled Sweet Potato With Tumeric, Cinnamon, And Sea Salt

I basically kept putting off finding a way to not have to cook so long that I needed to cook. I tossed a sweet potato in the oven for 90 minutes and made a cheeseburger with some questionably old meat :-/ And I love roasted potatoes; nothing says “home” and “comfort” like a roasted sweet potato. But they are wholly unfilling. I topped mine with turmeric and cinnamon for powerful antioxidants.

Hidden Ketchup

Hidden Ketchup

Whenever my grandmother made me a cheeseburger, she put the ketchup on top of the burger and then the cheese while it was still cooking so the ketchup got a chance to heat up while the cheese melted. I always thought that was smart, and tasty 😉 Speaking of grandparents and parents, I loved Heather’s post today on just enjoying a day with her mom, and I’d like to wish Matt and his wife a huge congratulations for the birth of their baby!

I think after all that cheese and frozen yogurt, dairy has been capped for the day. Thank God for dark chocolate 😀 In the meantime, here’s a giveaway for Tropical Tradition’s shredded coconut! Yum.

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Practice Makes Perfect

Posted on April 10, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

Thank you for your reassurance on this post that my nerves are normal. I feel like I’ll be able to run so much better on race day with a clean and clear mind knowing that a lot of the other racers must feel the same way.

Newman's Own Organics Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup

Newman's Own Organics Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup

I sipped some teeccino and snacked on a Newman’s Own Organics milk chocolate peanut butter cup planning my run. Really, I was just stalling and didn’t get out until almost noon! I figured I’d run as much of the real race course as I could for some “practice”. It ended up being a lot more like race day than I thought it would…

13.37 Miles In 1:50:54

13.37 Miles In 1:50:54

Definitely did not plan to go so far! What can I say? I got in the spirit of things. It was fun imagining how full Providence will be on that day, all the other racers running near me, and the adrenaline. I ran 9 miles on the course and then looped around a bit to extend the mileage and end up at Whole Foods(I even saw one of my teachers whose paper I’ve been putting off writing, haha, but that’s another story and he didn’t see me ;-)). Unfortunately, I didn’t account for the 1+ mile walk back from Whole Foods, so I was pretty pooped by the time I got to sit down and eat lunch.

General Gao's Chicken, Avocado With Lemon And Sea Salt, Fresh Yoghurt Cheese

General Gao's Chicken, Avocado With Lemon And Sea Salt, Fresh Yoghurt Cheese

Holy dietary fats, batman! I was craving some dark chicken which is why I went to Whole Foods in the first place and got General Gao’s. That balanced really well with a creamy, soft avocado half with lemon juice and sea salt. I also grabbed from the prepped food bar a block of yogurt cheese; it wasn’t anything special and just sort of tasted like a basic mozzarella :-/ I still ate it all.

Since lunch was so filling and eaten pretty late, I wasn’t in the mood for much this afternoon. But if you’re gonna twist my arm…

Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream, Organic White Chocolate

Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream, Organic White Chocolate

Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream, Organic White Chocolate

Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream, Organic White Chocolate

Don’t tell chickpeas, but I think vanilla is my favorite bean 😉 While at Whole Foods, I picked up a few groceries including Vanilla Bean So Delicious. I just love this stuff; I’ve even made a review page for it now! Check it out. Equally j’adore Green & Black’s organic white chocolate, which I also made a review for. It’s not the best white chocolate I’ve had, but it’s pretty darn good 😉 And those vanilla bean specks get me every time.

Faux Buffalo Chicken Salad With Steamed Broccoli And Avocado

Faux Buffalo Chicken Salad With Steamed Broccoli And Avocado

I wasn’t too hungry for dinner; I think that lunch was still holding me over, and I’d care not to know how much exactly was in that plate. I made a nice, light Summer salad starting with a bed of torn hamburg lettuce and adding a pack of chopped Lightlife Buffalo Wings. Some people prefer neither real meat or fake meat; lucky for me, I eat both happily so long as they’re ethical and natural 😀 I added a few more slices of avocado(love) and some steamed broccoli for light fiber. Maybe my hunger will strike for dessert? I’m well stocked if that’s the case.

Have a great Saturday’s night and go ahead and enter Katie’s giveaway! I just noticed Anchorman is on TV at 8(!!). It’s not my favorite movie, but I can’t complain about it, either.

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Easter 2010

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

All this post made me want was cheese. I don’t eat cheese much but when I do, God, do I love cheese. I’m not even sure I understand the bastardization of it in the first place. It’s milk processed with enzymes to the point of having little to no lactose. Sure, let’s all bastardize Velveeta, but then again I wouldn’t call that real “cheese” to begin with. Real cheese is an art.

Next Generation Organic Garlic Parsley Cheddar Raw Cheese

Next Generation Organic Garlic Parsley Cheddar Raw Cheese

Keeping the theme of the night “raw”, I had some of Next Generation’s Dairy organic raw garlic parsley cheddar cheese. Soooo good *drools*. And if you were  to tell me something about this complete protein with organic dairy fat and raw enzymes wasn’t healthy, I wouldn’t believe you. Skip the Velveeta and stuff yourselves with this. By the way, it scares me that my spell check finds nothing wrong with “Velveeta”, but type “kombucha” and let the red squiggles go flying!

French Toast Oatmeal, Pomegranate Chobani With White Chocolate Wonderful

French Toast Oatmeal, Pomegranate Chobani With White Chocolate Wonderful

I was surprisingly hungry right when I woke up. Instead of running, I made myself breakfast and started food prep. Hot cross buns have nothing on french toast oatmeal. Yum! And dark chocolate, white chocolate, peanut butter–whatever you put on a pomegranate Chobani tastes delicious.

Raw Vegan Brownie With Coconut Oil

Raw Vegan Brownie With Coconut Oil

Finally I was ready to run after we went to Easter Mass. For some quick energy I had a raw vegan brownie with coconut oil schmeared on top. I don’t know if it was this sudden heat wave, improper hydration, or too much casein at breakfast, but the first bit of running was definitely uncomfortable.

Banana

Banana

Eventually, I got into my groove and did 9.5 miles around the neighborhood at a great pace. I refueled with a banana while I showered, cooked more, and waited for the relatives to arrive. Among my dishes was my Irawnic Salad

Irawnic Salad

Irawnic Salad

Doesn’t that look amazing? I finally got around to making my own and it was heavenly. I can’t wait to make this recipe more often. It was so simple, too!

  • 2 bunches organic kale
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 1/2-2 avocadoes
  • 1/2 red onion
  • 1/2 cup cashews roasted with sea salt

In a bowl, mash the avocado with the lemon juice and vinegar.Massage the kale until well coated. Top with diced red onion and salty cashews. Dear Lord, is this good. It’s “irawnic” because the salad is completely raw except for the roasted salted cashews. I like to think of it like the fatty bacon slices in an otherwise “healthy” salad 😉 and that’s why it’s ironic.

Easter Table

Easter Table

Easter Table

Easter Table

Easter Table

Easter Table

There was so much good food. But I never feel pressure to eat much differently at holidays than on regular days. In fact, I make it a point to choose 3 things, and just eat those. Since there is always leftovers, I know I’ll be seeing all of this for the next few days, and that way it’s like each meal is “new”.

Parmesan Cauliflower, Maple Tofu, Irawnic Salad

Parmesan Cauliflower, Maple Tofu, Irawnic Salad

For my plate, I had irawnic salad, roasted parmesan cauliflower, and maple baked tofu. Yum! This was perfect and just what I needed to eat. The salad I think was a hit; even the maple tofu got a few fans among the meat eaters. There was no love lost hereon skipping the ham(at this meal, at least). I had seconds on the salad and tofu.

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

Dessert was easiy my favorite part 🙂 Since my relatives are always down for Easter, we also celebrate my birthday with them.I was very particular about my cake, but that made it just the perfect thing when it came out. It was Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free vanilla cake made with 3 organic eggs and coconut oil instead of canola. The frosting was a vegan buttercream made with earth balance and on the side was a little organic coconut shreds.

Birthday Cake With Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Birthday Cake With Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Ice Cream

It was dreamy. Seriously, this was one of the best cakes I’ve ever had. And I think everyone else shared that sentiment. It was perfectly sweet and moist, and you would never thing twice about the “gluten-free” texture. Bob did me well for my birthday 😀 On the side was a scoop of dairy/soy-free So Delicious coconut milk vanilla bean ice cream. Between the cake and the ice cream, vanilla beans were flying everywhere!

Irawnic Salad And Melon

Irawnic Salad And Melon

A few screaming cousins, Disney World slide shows, and pots of coffee later, I made a raw snack plate. I figured the salad wouldn’t really keep well, so I’d have those leftovers first On the side was some cantaloupe and honeydew melon, all covered in sea salt. Glorious.

I was supposed to go back to school tonight, but the day totally wiped all of us out: Church, cooking, cleaning, little cousins, etc. Not to mention I wasn’t packed and there were leftovers bursting out of the fridge Instead, we mustered up the strength for a small Whole Foods run and then leftovers for dinner.

Honey Ham, Grilled Asparagus, Roasted Carrots

Honey Ham, Grilled Asparagus, Roasted Carrots

Now the ham makes an appearance. It’s from Whole Foods, so it’s completely natural and nitrate-free. The best part of this meal was purposely avoiding these 3 and other foods at lunch so that it didn’t even feel like leftovers! Admit it: You wouldn’t have known if I didn’t mention it 😉

Well, my Easter rocked. How about yours? If you posted it on your blog and I didn’t comment, I promise I read it. I was on and off my computer all day catching up with things when I was allowed a break from being the 3 wheel on the Wii. Like I said, there’s so much I want to and have to do before I can think about school again, even though Spring Break ends now 😦 Perhaps I’ll make a chronographic list! That’s one mental health tip that’s never out of style.

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Easy Running And Planned Meals

Posted on March 24, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy humpday, all! I have to admit: Normally, I don’t give a damn about what day of the wek it is or being half way there. But today, when I walked in my room, threw down my stuff, and knew I would be in for the night, I just wanted to do a happy dance. I’m 1 midterm I haven’t studied for, 1 class I won’t pay attention in, and 1 paper I haven’t started writing away from break. When I write it out like that, things don’t sound so good. LOL. I’ll just get on to my day then…

Red Delicious Apple
Red Delicious Apple

10 Miles In 1:29:56
10 Miles In 1:29:56

I grabbed an apple and was good-to-go to the gym. This was perhaps one of the easiest runs I’ve had in a while; I was well rested, well fueled, and feeling overall refreshed. The only thing that made it difficult was the 4th hour of the Today Show with Hoda and Kathy Lee and then local news, but I survived 😉 Through segments about women’s products like “the butt bra”, I don’t know how I made it…

Broccoli, Shredded Parsley Salmon, Garlic Parsley Cheddar Raw Cheese Stick
Broccoli, Shredded Parsley Salmon, Garlic Parsley Cheddar Raw Cheese Stick

For lunch I couldn’t decide wether to go protein-heavy or carb-heavy because of the workout. I decided on protein mainly because this salmon has been sitting around for 2 days and needed to get eaten :-/ It was tasty, though! It’s always better when you let someone else(thank you, Whole Foods) cook for you. On the side I had broccoli with my favorite dressing by Foods Alive and an organic garlic parsley cheddar cheese stick from Next Generation Dairy.

Would it be weird to say my “me” time came in History discussion? We had nothing to do this week, since the midterm was yesterday, so we watched 50 minutes of a PBS special. If 50 minutes listening to bad British documentaries while making fun of it with a friend and drifting off isn’t “me” time, I don’t know what is. After that I had another class(Object History), which just made the day feel so much longer. Midway through I broke out a snack.

Peanut Choco' Chewy Nature's Path Granola Bar
Peanut Choco’ Chewy Nature’s Path Granola Bar

Mmm I just love these bars from Nature’s Path. They’re sweet, salty, nutty–perfect! Except the ingredient list is totally less than stellar. Sugar as the number one ingredient? A chocolate coating that has less cocoa than palm oil? Yeah, I’m going to pretend I don’t see that because it’s organic…

Green & Black's Peanut Bar
Green & Black’s Peanut Bar

Candy, in general, gets a HUGE oversight from me if it’s organic, like Green & Blacks chocolates.

Vanilla Chobani With Green & Black's Peanut Bar

Vanilla Chobani With Green & Black's Peanut Bar

Once I got this in mind, I had to hop to a campus store to grab a Vanilla Chobani; the combination was just too dreamy. The bar is milk chocolate with caramelized peanuts and sea salt. The sea salt wasn’t really present enough for me, but then again there isn’t enough sea salt in the sea to please me! But this tasted a lot better overall than I would have thought for a protein-packed snack.

Grass-Fed Burger, Broccoli, Baked Cheddar Cheese Fries

Grass-Fed Burger, Broccoli, Baked Cheddar Cheese Fries

And now with dinner plated, I feel a whole other happy dance coming on. Can I get into my PJ’s before this burger is even gobbled up? For the first time in a while, it was cooked to perfection: rare. On the side, I had some Snikiddy baked cheddar cheese fries to sneak my snack fix, and some plain broccoli for a “real” vegetable. What? Ketchup doesn’t count as a vegetable? 😉

Meal Planning

This is the happy union of being a foodie and doing things for your mental health: meal planning. I know it’s something a lot of other bloggers are passionate about. The 1 week we did it for my family back in January, I remember meals being the last thing on my mind all week, which was such a comfort. Now that I have such a small refrigerator to work with and so less options, I don’t keep up the practice. But I do keep meals in mind, and usually am able to plan at the very least 3-4 hours ahead. When things are really crunched, I know to turn to prepared foods like the salmon I had for lunch. Likewise, the dinner I planned this morning taking in mind the fact that I had class until 5:20 and like to eat at 6:30. Do you meal plan? What’s the last meal you planned and prepared?

P.s. Survivor is on tonight! Get excited!

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Super Salad And The Great Egg Debate

Posted on March 16, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good afternoon! It feels more like afternoon now than evening or night just because it’s still sunny! This time shift thing is definitely throwing me for a loop; I love the extra light at the end of the day, but feeling around for everything in the dark at 6:15? Not a fan. P.S. Google Reader and formatting both have not been my biggest fan today so if you missed my chocolate obsession eating and Alter Eco review you can still read it here.

Red Delicious Apple

I had my entire lunch packed and ready to go for class when hunger struck like a brick 20 minutes before hand. Rather than gobble down what I packed, I grabbed this apple. Most foods I like to eat slowly and savour but apples I can deal with the chew-and-go nature. Besides, I really wanted to give time to the salad I made.

Hemp Oil Dressing And Mulberries

The combo of these ingredients does not get old. But winding back, last week I was craving chickpeas like craaaazy but since I try to make the most out of my meal plan and the dining hall never had any, I was out of luck 😦 Over the weekend, I decided since when does anyone go poor off of buying canned chickpeas? So welcome back to my life chickpea salad!

Chickpea, Mulberry, And Cheddar Salad Over Dressed Spinach, Gingerade Kombucha

What makes this a super salad are all the other ingredients. First I overdress the greens with Foods Alive hemp oil sweet & sassy dressing, which really does have that sweet(agave nectar) vinegary flavor going on. Next up, I toss 1/2 a can chickpeas with Navitasdried mulberries(a superfruit!) and a diced raw & probiotic cheddar cheese stick ala Next Generation Dairy. I think cheese sticks by their very nature are super, don’t you?

Chickpea, Mulberry, And Cheddar Salad Over Dressed Spinach

The result is one big old trip to flavertown–I never thought I could enjoy a salad so much! And the health benefits here are ridiculous. Beans? Great vegan fiber and protein. The cheese has living enzymes for positive digestive health. The spinach is filled with vitamins!! The mulberries–well they’re a superfruit so they have to be healthy but they’re also a great subtle sweetness. And the hemp oil has healthy omega-6’s and -3’s. You can’t go wrong! I really enjoyed washing it down with a gingerade kombucha; did you know ginger has anti-flu properties to it? Not to mention kombucha also restores your body’s alkalinity and is probiotic as well. Wow, I’ve beaten that salad to death, so I’ll move on to dessert.

So Delicious Vanilla Bean Coconut Milk Yogurt And Sweet Scoops Mint Chip Frozen Yogurt

Flash forward after 3 hours of class and some email responding and you have a munchy college student on the first day the sun’s been out 5 days. The answer? Ice cream! To shake things up, I had a scoop of Sweet Scoops‘ mint chip froyo(dairy & probiotic) with a scoop of So Delicious‘ vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream(vegan). The flavor came out perfect with a coolness from the mint and a cleanness from the vanilla bean. And since my stomach’s been a bit off since Sunday when I had that gluten-freefilled cookie, this was easy cals to take in without feeling more bloated.

French Toast Ingredients

Now if you thought lunch was just the bee’s knees, you’re going to looove dinner. I’ve had eggs in my fridge for weeks now that I’ve been wanting to eat but not knowing how to eat in a way that would excite me. Why eggs? Because they’re packed with protein and healthy, nutrient-rich fat from the yolk when they’re given the right feed. These were local, organic, and tested for 600mg Omega-3’s per 2 eggs, which is excellent! Especially since my diet has been lacking DHA omega-3 from fish this entire month and 1/2 I’ve been at school. Then I just needed to decide what to do with them…

Cornmeal French Toast Oatmeal

The man(and I’m pretty sure this was a man and a lazy bachelor living in a crappy apartment at that) who first used breakfast for dinner as an excuse was a genius. Since french toast oatmeal never fails me and tastes delicious, I figured that would be appropriate. To switch it up, I replaced the oatbran with cornmeal! And then continued to make it with 2 local & organic Country Hen eggs and patted with pasture butter, drizzled with New Hampshire maple syrup, and then topped with cinnamon and vanilla powder–magnifique! as the French would say 😉

Like I said and believe, eggs are very nutritious in their complete form. However, they’re subject to so much labeling! You can get regular, cage-free, cage-free organic, cage-free vegetarian fed, omega-3–the list goes on. Personally, I think so long as it’s vegetarian fed, it’s good enough; that’s really the only label I think “matters” and while some can be better vegetarian fed, the changes after that get wish-washy. However, I try to buy the most labeled eggs I can find. This time, I bought the Country Hen eggs; usually I go for Eggland’s Best cage-free, organic, even though I think they’re just as good as their regular ones. Why? The labeling makes me feel better. It just does when it comes to eggs–not all foods, but eggs in particular. I like to imagine the happy chicken wandering around dropping eggs as she pleases(even though I realistically know this is never the case) and so I shell over the extra money for the better bird. What about you? Does it matter at all, or are you at some sort of conflict like me?

And here’s an awesome giveaway for coconut oil!

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Who Plucked Out My Sweet Tooth?

Posted on March 9, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If I took you all in a room, and told you I didn’t like things sweet, I’d expect a roar of laughter(or at least some backwards glances). But today it’s like I’ve crave nothing sweet(that, for me, just meaning not a lot–not literally nothing). And the only reason I can think is that–save 1/8 teaspoon in my coffee at 6:15–I haven’t had any stevia. Today was not a hot drink type of day and I used agave in my yogurt this morning. I’ve never thought it before, but maybe there’s some truth to not craving sugars without low-cal sweeteners, even natural ones like stevia.

Red Delicious Apple

I can never make it between breakfast and a reasonably timed lunch on Tuesday/Thursday, so I had a naturally sweet apple. It was also quite naturally mealy and just naturally not-good, but it held me over so that I could make my favorite salad to eat in class.

Hemp Oil Dressing And Mulberries

I’d never thought I’d say that: “Favorite salad”. But I’m really digging the new flavor combination I struck on 2 weeks ago. I guess these are sort of sweet ingredients, but not too much. I used a good squirt of Foods Alive Hemp Oil Sweet & Sassy dressing and a handful of Navitas Naturals mulberries, mixed in with chickpeas and diced cheese.

Raw & Probiotic Chickpea Salad, Trilogy Synergy

Chickpea, Mulberry, And Garlic Parsley Cheddar Salad Over Dressed Spinach

Everytime I eat this, I swear it gets better; it just makes me feel so fresh! The garlic parsley cheddar raw & probiotic cheese from Next Generation Dairy really makes the flavors come together. And so much of this is raw, you know it must be good for you. On the side, I accompanied the meal with a raw and probiotic drink, namely the Trilogy flavor by Synergy. I talked about this more in the end, but it was quite the tastey juice. It tasted more just like a regular gingerade kombucha to me, but I didn’t mind because that’s most of the ingredients and a flavor I love. I would’n say this was sweet, though; It’s much more vinegary. And it finally made me feel full. Where was that when my stomach was on a war path yesterday?

Orange Chocolate Energy Bar

This afternoon, on top of my 3 hours of class I had another engagement that lasted about an hour. Therefore, a bar was a complete must. I grabbed this Nature’s Path Organic Chocolate Orange Energy Bar from my bag. Sweet? Definitely. I didn’t say my sweet tooth had wholly disappeared 😉

Broccoli With Salsa

When I got back to my dorm, it was the oddest thing: All I wanted was dinner foods, even though dinner was a good time away and I still had preparation to do. I scrapped around for something not sweet, and this was the best I could do; it totally hit the spot, too! Go figure. I just hope this doesn’t continue for long because I do not keep that much savory stuff around.

Forming Grass-Fed Beef Patties

It was that time of week again. I want to thank each and every one of you who comments on how well I eat for living in a dorm. I assure you, after a full day of classes, the last thing I want to do is form burgers, cut sweet potato fries, and cook it all, especially when I still have homework for the next day. To be honest, I just don’t feel like there’s much of a choice, though. To eat in the dining hall, I either need to compromise a lot of my food philosophy, or learn to be happy with the salad bar; I just don’t like raw vegetables that much. When you get right down to it, cooking is work(God, now I understand my mother all too much), but it’s work I’ll do.

Grass-Fed 1/4 Pounder, Sweet Potato Fries

This was worth the work, too. I do not know what was up with the beef; it was incredibly juicy but wouldn’t hold on to the juice. That’s OK because I ended up licking the plate clean(did I really just admit to that?) Happily, despite the lost prep time, I can be a fast eater and move on to my readings for tomorrow now. I’m sure today was just a fluke and that my sweet tooth will reappear soon for dessert(how could it not?).

There’s so much extra out there, I feel lie I have to mention a few before I give a product review summary. First up, there’s this article concerning fat as a new flavor. I’ve read this a couple places now, and I’m totally willing to jump aboard the flavor train if that’s the case. What’s interesting is reading how they want to take and utilize this knowledge. There’s also a funky monkey snack giveaway for you all to enter, not like those have much fat in them 😉 And check out the $50 shopping spree giveaway on Mary’s Weight Loss Blog! I can win an $50 Shopping Spree Giveaway from iHerb.com and so can you! Click here for contest details! Now, I’ll wrap this up with my Kombucha product review recap. I was able to sample 4 flavors to review for Synergy, and here’s my thoughts on those I tried. I think what I learned was, whichever you choose, you won’t be disappointed so long as you like Kombucha. You can also look at my Synergy review page to see what other flavors I’ve had and might have in the future. Enjoy!

Botanic No 9

8.5/10: A delicate blend of honeysuckle and flowers, this kombucha has an equally tame flavor. It wasn’t “blue” in a saddening way but rather very mellow. I almost missed the vinegar flavor of the kombucha which is pretty much rendered down to nothing here. This one wasn’t for me on account of its subtlety but would definitely be a mellow welcome to anyone looking for “down time” or simply new to kombucha.

Citrus

8/10: The vinegar flavor of kombucha is a lot to handle naturally. I’m afraid it just might be too much for citrus to handle, too. While I liked this as a drink, it didn’t scream citrus! or lemon! the way I was expecting; there was just some certain zest of life missing from the flavor. That being said, it was very good kombucha, and I’m glad nothing fought the natural vinegar punch but–if anything–enhanced it. And perhaps the citrus helped to boost my mood because I felt like an all star after drinking it.

Multi-Green

9/10: “Drinking your calories” often gets a bad wrap; but when you’re drinking greens, living enzymes, and a host of other nutritious things, how can anything be bad? I’ll admit that I was wary of the color for this. When I started sipping I was pleasantly surprised to find that the flavors here–vinegary kombucha and bitter greens–actually work and thrive together! And the algae and other add-ins give a welcome dose of protein. The only unpleasantry was the chalky remnants at the bottom of the bottle. Otherwise, this was a surprisingly joyful way to take in my greens!

Trilogy

8.5/10: Even when synergy dabbles with juices, they really can’t go wrong; so often, the typical juice drink is over-sugared and more of a dessert than a health drink. I like how synergy keeps the kombucha strong and the ingredients simple; in this was just kombucha, raspberry juice, citrus, and ginger. The “trilogy” of flavors work well, but perhaps a little too well; you can’t identify much more than a strong vinegar flavor with a sharp bitter tone that could come from any 1–or all–of the flavors. Still, this drink had me sipping more and feeling well,, and is one of the flavors I’d gladly grab again.

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Full Of Probiotics

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

That pretty much describes me right now! These days, I don’t really keep track of any part of my diet. I don’t do calorie counting, I don’t keep track of my fruit and veggie intake, if I’m not down with a protein at a meal I let it slide, etc. The one thing I have sort of kept up with as of lately is getting 2 sources of probiotics a day. They’re a superfood of mine because I think they’re great for digestion, an upset stomach, and longevity. But even this isn’t much of a “goal” because 2 sources is quite average for me. You know what’s not average? 5. And that’s all before dessert.

Pineapple Chobani With Custom Goji Granola

Backing up, what are probiotics? They’re strands of bacterial culture added to foods, most recognizably yogurt. Since these bacteria already exist in our digestive tracks, eating more of them helps to bolster any that might have died out over time. Probiotics have been suggested to have a host of other benefits from weight management(unless you’re only getting them through gallons of frozen yogurt) to flu prevention. This morning, I got S. Thermophilus, L. Bulgaricus, L. Acidophilus, Bifidus, and L. Casei from my pineapple Chobani.

Hemp Oil Dressing And Mulberries

For lunch, I had another superfood salad in mind! I had something like this Monday; I’m really not a big salad eater, but something about this particular combination of ingredients just “works” and made me crave it. In the mix was a good dose of Foods Alive‘s Hemp Oil Sweet & Sassy dressing and Navitas Naturals mulberries.

Chickpea, Mulberry, And Garlic Cheddar Salad Over Dressed Spinach, Gingerade Kombucha

Chickpea, Mulberry, And Garlic Cheddar Salad Over Dressed Spinach

I mixed the dressing with spinach, and made a composite of chickpeas, garlic, sea salt, diced Next Generation Dairy raw & probiotic garlic parsley cheddar, and the mulberries. I love the mulberries here, which are like golden raisins but less sweet and more fiberous. On the side, I had a gingerade kombucha. Overall, not only was this meal fantastic, but it was amazingly healthy. The dressing, spinach, mulberries, cheese, and drink were all raw. Only the chickpeas were cooked, but those are healthy anyway so who cares? And the cheese was fortified with Ganeden BC30 probiotics, while the kombucha has 1 billion Lactobacillus Bacterium and S. Boulardii. That’s a lot of cultures!

Mint Chip Sweet Scoops Frozen Yogurt

Let’s just say I was more than happy to get out of my class at 4pm–it was the weekend! And I needed it, too, seeing as how much I had juggling in my mind to handle “once the school work was done with”. Well, really the first thing I did was get to my dorm, turn on the computer, and scoop out some frozen yogurt. We picked up this mint chip frozen yogurt from Sweet Scoops on Sunday; I’ve had it before so I knew I’d like it. Plus I love anything mint. But I think Sweet Scoops is also good because they keep the milk kind of fatty so it has a thick texture.  And it had my good friends, L. Bulgaricus & S. Thermophilus–score.

If you’ve ever wondered about the cultures in frozen yogurt(because I know you have ;-)), they are live but–unlike in yogurt–are not active. The freezing process puts the bacteria into a dormant state. Once they get into your system, however, where the temperature is much higher, they become active again. That is what makes frozen yogurt what it is(it has nothing to do with fat content). Running around like the nut that I am pressing tofu and shoving vegetables in the oven, I needed more fuel before dinner. Enter into my life more probiotics:

So Delicious Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanut Sunspires

How many times do I eat this? A lot. And yet I never thought to notice that each time I do I’m taking in L. Bulgaricus, S. Thermophilus, L. Rhamnosus, L. Acidophilus, Bif. Bifidum, and Bif. Animalis. Good to know. It was also quite delicious, perfectly sweet and salty, and a little nutty. I’ve heard that Stop & Shop employees in R.I. are going on strike this weekend! I sure hope not; it’s $1 cheaper to get these So Delicious soy yogurts there than it is at Whole Foods. Now, if you can believe it, there weren’t any probiotics at dinner.

Roasted Broccoli And Sweet Potato Chunks With Maple Baked Tofu

What it was was my ultimate comfort food dish; would it make sense to have anything else on a snowy night that’s kicking off the weekend? I think not. I was thinking about putting this on a plate, but a bowl seemed so much more comforting. Bowl? Plate? Doesn’t matter? This all tasted awesome with some sea salt to balance it out. I’m impressed the tofu pressed well in only 90 minutes.

Not only was that bowl incredibly comforting, it’s going to be very well digested. I think I got about 10 different strands of bacteria in me, if not more, and billions of cultures. Incredible, huh? Don’t get me wrong–today was a bit of an abnormality, and really getting any probiotics is a good start. If you aren’t a yogurt or frozen yogurt fan(although how could you not be?), they also make supplements that are concentrated forms of probiotics; Avery would be the one to see on those. Now, I’m freezing my butt off tonight; the bacteria strand S. Thermophilus would not be happy(this means heat lover in Greek). I think they lowered the heat in the whole building because my coconut oil used to even be liquid at room temp and now I’m cold 😦 PJ’s, a sweatshirt, and Survivor will cure the cold.

And because I’m tired of writing out scientific names for bacteria, I’ll talk about giveaways. Kate is giving away ch-ch-ch-chia seeds. Click here to win some Maranatha. There’s also a Tropical Tradition Coconut Oil giveaway. Here’s a chance to get some of my favorite protein bars. And, lastly, a [me] & goji custom cereal giveaway.

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It’s Rough To Rest

Posted on March 2, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For a non-bachelor watcher, there was nothing on TV last night. Now can we stop hearing about Jake and all the complaints over the fake girls? Please? I really wanted a Pomegranate Chobani but all I had on hand was plain so I whipped one up.

Pomegranate Yogurt With Dark Velvet Chocolate

In the mix went 1oz Pom Wonderful juice and a tablespoon of the Europe superfruit spread from Crofters with some stevia. Together it was all “OK” but not quite up to par with a real pomegranate yogurt; I did not miss the seeds, though. On top, of course, was a little bit of chocolate.

Alter Eco Dark Velvet Chocolate

This new bar from alter eco called Dark Velvet Chocolate. On the one hand, it makes me want to scream at the top of my lungs “It’s not dark chocolate if it has milk in it!”. On the other hand, I was too busy savoring it to scream anything. The butterfat and milk in this make it sooo creamy and good. And I like that it had no soy and the ingredients were all fair trade and mentioned the origin. Very eco-aware! It was a fun treat to be working on my paper with. I’m writing about The First Baptist Church, which–in Providence–is the first Baptist Church. The building itself(what I’m concerned with) is only as old as 1775, but then again so is our Nation.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter And Nutritional Yeast

Before bed, I made a snack. How many times can I eat this same combination? Apparently, a lot. It’s a better choice though than whipping out the cheddar popchips and dipping them in PB, and with the same flavor, too! And there was still nothing on TV. I might have been guilty of even submitting and turning on the Bachelor for a time. Maybe.

Munch Bar

Just when I thought I was going to go to bed, something in my stomach was irking me to try out this bar. What the heck?! I had practically just eaten a full meal between the oatmeal and yogurt; but my hunger was just raging. My dad found this at Walgreens and gave it to me. It’s an all-natural, 6-ingredient candy bar whose first ingredients is peanuts and it’s made by the Mars company. Lo and behold, it even has its own website! It was actually really good, too, and reminded me of chunky peanut brittle. I would definitely be happy to find more candy bars like this on store shelves(as opposed to those whose 2nd ingredient is artificial red coloring and 3rd trans fat).

Soy Yogurt With Hemp Seeds, Oatmeal, 2 Scrambled Eggs, Cheddar Cheese

This morning felt so uninteresting. I slept in a good 75 minutes, read a bit while watching TV, showered, checked emails, and cooked eggs. I have to wonder how it is I wound up with a life where I cook eggs before class in college; it’s a good thing they take about 2 minutes.

Omelet Oatmeal

Considering the difficulties of perfectly cooking oatmeal, eggs, and melting cheese, this wasn’t bad at all. I cooked the oatmeal in the microwave, topped with slightly undercooked scrambled eggs from a pan, and topped that with cheese microwaving a little longer to melt it and covering to let the steam finish it off. It was actually all pretty well incorporated and still warm when I got to class.

Red Delicious Apple

And walking in the door I grabbed this apple to snack on while posting because I was still hungry. There’s something that feels backwards about needing to eat more when you know you’re taking a rest day; at the same time, I know in the back of my mind that if you’re hungry for it, it won’t be bad for you. In general, I have a rough time with rest days; I just want to run! But 20-someodd days of running straight and I was definitely feeling fatigued from overtraining. And for what? A half marathon I know I’ll be able to complete? It’s not worth it to push that hard, at least without sitting down to a pint of Ben & Jerry’s with a spoon at some point in that time frame. How do you “deal” with rest days? Do you look forward to them, or do they make you cringe? I’m definitely the latter, but I think I have enough going on today that my hands will be too busy to notice. I still have to make beef burgers for lunch!

And check out this awesome chia seed giveaway.

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Priorities And Directions

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

Good evening. I’ll just mention now that I’m bloggin’ from another state! But more on that in a bit. When I was wrapping up the post from this morning, I was thinking how much I really wanted to walk to Whole Foods, but didn’t have a lot of free time. Where are my priorities! I’m scarily good about doing what “should” be done, but not so good about always doing what I “want” to do. At that point, I let the dishes be dirty, the emails go unanswered, and stepped out the door. I know, I’m a rebel 😉

Groceries

I grabbed the typical stuff for next week: soy yogurt, beef, condiments, etc. The only thing they didn’t have was any soft tofu >:-( We got that a little later on in the day, though. And I say we because my dad met me at Whole Foods to pay for this and pick me up(double score). I just really felt like I needed a trip home this weekend after a lot of work and 3 weeks of not being in my own bed. So I packed up and was out of there!

Buffalo Chicken, Broccoli, Snikiddy Cheddar Cheese Fries

On the way back to good ol’ MA, we stopped a different Whole Foods to grab some lunch. I grabbed buffalo chicken off the food bar, a bag of new chips that were on sale, but broccoli out of the produce section(!!). This is the trick to eating at Whole Foods without breaking the bank: get the things that are cheaper raw and cook them in the microwave–it’s so simple and instead of $7 a pound broccoli was $1.50 a pound.

Snikiddy Cheddar Cheese Fries

These were the chips that were on sale made by Snikiddy and oh my God were they brilliant! I had never tried any of their products, but if it’s on sale I’ll definitely give them a taste. Cheddar Cheese Fries says it all; these were like straight up Cheetos. Heavenly. Unfortunately, Whole Foods didn’t have one of the Bob’s Red Mill products I was looking for, so we went across the way(literally, right across the street) to Market Basket.

Bob's Red Mill Products

Check out that selection! And it’s all super cheap because nothing costs much at Market Basket(granted, most of the stuff they sell I wouldn’t want to touch with a 10-foot pole). I definitely need to keep this place in mind more often.

Red Delicious Apple

After I found what I wanted, I snacked on this apple until we got home safe and sound, where mom and Montana were waiting to say hello. Apparently, it’s been snowing in MA all week, or at least moreso than it has at all at school. Now, for the big unveiling…

GF Vanilla Cake Mix, Coconut Oil, Eggs

What I wanted to pick up was Bob’s Red Mill‘s gluten-free vanilla cake mix! God, I really need to lay off the exclamation marks in this post. Normally, I wouldn’t use a mix, but since I know so little about gluten-free baking I felt like I needed to the first time. But Bob’s is a good one because it uses whole grain gluten-free flours(very important to me). I used 1/2 the bag to make 8 cupcakes. And, while it called for vegetable oil, I asked myself “WWFLBD?” or “what would fat-loving bloggers do?” and swapped that out for an equal amount of coconut oil. Is there anything coconut can’t do?

Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcake With Coconut Oil Vanilla Frosting

I couldn’t wait longer than 30 minutes for them to cool; these smelled too good. And they tasted too good, too! So perfectly light, airy, and sweet. The texture was a bit chewy, but I think that’s just the general way of gluten-free flours and eggs. For a frosting, I mixed powdered sugar, coconut oil, and vanilla extract–heavenly. But you know what they say about cupcakes…

Gluten-Free Vanilla Cupcake

1 is just not enough. At least I didn’t frost this one? It may have been a bit more sugars than I’m used to in an afternoon, especially an afternoon where all I did was find TV shows like Friends on channels I haven’t had in a while, but no regrets; when there’s cake around baked fresh, you better eat it up! To compensate, there at least was a vegan dinner.

Asparagus, Snobby Joe Mix

I actually love green lentils. Too bad they aren’t more dorm-room friendly. For the mix, a little ketchup and mustard and a lot of steak sauce and voila! It’s so good! And I couldn’t imagine a more homey meal. On the side was asparagus grabbed from Whole Foods because, well, they really keep this house bare. And now it’s already almost 7:30; how did that happen? I need to get a move on things! I can’t wait to hear what people think of the cupcakes once they eat them for dessert(obviously, I hated them ;-)).

Here’s a popchip giveaway! Perfect for fueling my addiction.

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