Teas, Tweets, Chocolate, And Sweets

Posted on April 1, 2010. Filed under: Book Review, Daily Update, Giveaway | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Despite the order of this rhythmic post title, I’ll start with chocolate and save the tea for last 😀

Newman's Own Organic Orange Dark Chocolate

Newman's Own Organic Orange Dark Chocolate

Last night I was feeling like a chocolate snob and debating between which brand of orange dark chocolate to have; yes, I do that. In the end, I went with Newman’s Own Organic Orange Dark Chocolate not just because it’s organic but because it has a sweeter flavor from a higher sugar content. OK, enough chocolate talk. That prompted the tweet,

EvanFMFF: I want to go on an all-organic chocolate diet so that when I get fat from it I can say “yeah, but it’s organic fat”.

It was a joke (sort of :-D) but I loved the responses so much I had to share. Some bloggers wanted to join in; could I be more popular than the cookie diet? Other bloggers were their witty selves:

RunEatRepeat: @EvanFMFF and when you die all that organic fat will be like feeding the soil in a good way 🙂

which reminded me of something I want to share from the Today Show: sewage waste is not only permitted, but used in non-organic produce fertilizing. Uhh, ew! I don’t always or even often eat organic produce but these are the kinds of things I’d rather not know because it makes me want to. And, lastly, some bloggers made a knowledgeable and poignant tweet:

CandidRD: @EvanFMFF Sadly people really do think organic and “natural” foods are ALL healthy. HA!

That’s a good reminder that just because you shop at Whole Foods doesn’t mean you can’t go wrong, or at least be picking up things that are still “sometimes” treats rather than good-for-you diet staples.

Jokerz Candy Bar

Jokerz Candy Bar

For instance, Go Max Go Foods Jokerz candy bars. Not USDA organic,  and not a diet staple by any means. But one a week won’t kill you 😉 Just maybe your wallet.

Teeccino Mocha Herbal Coffee

Teeccino Mocha Herbal Coffee

This morning I slept in in hopes of a sunny outdoors run later on this morning; let’s see what the sun has to say about that. Instead of coffee, I thought I’d opt for mocha herbal teeccino instead so as to not dehydrate myself. It doesn’t really taste like coffee, but it’s nice beverage to have around if you need to feel April Fooled into drinking the real java. It’s better because it’s non-acidic. If it were the only type of coffee I kept around, I probably wouldn’t notice missing the “real” thing.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Honey Maple PB, Cacao Coconut Yogurt With Coconut PB

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Honey Maple PB, Cacao Coconut Yogurt With Coconut PB

Cacao Maca Coconut Yogurt With Coconut Peanut Butter

Cacao Maca Coconut Yogurt With Coconut Peanut Butter

Ahh, pumpkin oats, my voluminous friend, where have you been these past few days? 🙂 There was some pumpkin oatmeal with honey maple protein peanut butter, but the real story was in the yogurt. I mixed a plain So Delicious coconut milk yogurt with 2 tablespoons Navitas Naturals‘ twister powder(cacao, maca, and hemp) and topped that with some Tropical Traditions coconut peanut butter. Coconutty? I think so. The peanut butter was a little stiff on the yogurt and might have been overkill, but at least it was tasty overkill.

Sweet Utopia

Sweet Utopia

Rick from Book Publishing Co. offered to send me a book for review and share my opinions on. Sweet Utopia by Sharon Valencik is a book devoted to vegan desserts; how perfect does that sound? Desserts are something I’ve always had trouble “veganizing” myself so I can’t wait to see what she has to teach me and how much I can take away. For the month of April and possibly May, I’ll be flipping through the book, picking up tips, and trying out recipes. In the end, I’ll give a comprehensive review and hopefully if I end up loving it I can suggest it to you all! Sound fun?

Last but not least, the winner of the Celestial Tea Wellness giveaway as chosen by random lot is Angela! Congrats to her and happy sipping 🙂

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The Sound Of Food

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

White chocolate roses and blogging for pitons,
bright copper oat bowls and warm oven mittens,
brown paper lunch bags filled with cheese strings,
these are a few of my favorite things.
Pomegranate Chobani With Organic Dark Chocolate

Pomegranate Chobani With Organic Dark Chocolate

I didn’t intend for a “favorite foods” post. But when you’re eating, how can you not just want to eat all the best? And when you’re a blogger posting what you eat, that’s what you blog about! I think it’s safe to say pomegranate is pretty much my favorite flavored Chobani, and with my favorite dark chocolate by Endangered Species it’s just a winning duo.

Endangered Species Organic Smooth 70% Dark Chocolate

Endangered Species Organic Smooth 70% Dark Chocolate

And since there were only 4 more squares left, how could I not finish off the organic smooth dark chocolate; as always I’m a little sad to see this one go after only 2 days of eating, but with Easter and a birthday coming up, I feel as though it might be chocolate season 😉

Oatmeal With Naturally Nutty Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Naturally Nutty Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

When the paper’s written
And the  computers off
And I’m feeling tired
I simply reach for my butter toffee peanut butter
And then I don’t feel so wired

5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookie

5-Ingredient Peanut Butter Cookie

And even after that I was feeling a little “snacky” so I grabbed a 5-ingredient peanut butter cookie from the freezer and called it a night. I try not to have “a favorite recipe” and to love all my recipes equally. But… anything that’s filled with that much peanut butter and so simple you can make in a dorm environment is pretty special.

Coconut Milk

Coconut Milk

This morning, I bit the bullet: I opened up a can of coconut milk. Have I mentioned, coconut milk is among my favorite things? But you can only eat so much at a time, and I’m only one person, so 2/3rds ends up going bad. I decided to look at it the other way, though, and notice that 1/3 will be eaten before I have to throw it out 🙂 That made me happy as a clam

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Twister Power Coconut Milk Yogurt

Twister Power Coconut Milk Yogurt

Dare I say, it doesn’t get better than the combination of Justin’s chocolate almond butter and fresh coconut milk. Simply words can not describe it. And I always worry about protein on Fridays during Lent; usually I can not give this a second thought and go with cravings, but on a day when I have to ignore any meat cravings it makes me focus a bit more. Since So Delicious coconut milk yogurt is creamy and dreamy, but not protein-rich, I added 2 tablespoons of Navitas Naturals‘ twister power powder, which is a 6g protein and antioxidant boost from hemp, maca, and cacao. If nothing else, this tasted good. It was just the right amount of chocolate sweetness with a clear hemp flavor and a bit of maltiness. A new favorite thing? We’ll have to see…

Mental Health Week Wrap-Up

I hope you’ve all enjoyed some stress relieving tips. If nothing else, they’ve helped me get through this midterm week, which I’m happy to report will be all done once I get my butt to the Classics department to turn in a hard copy of my paper 😀 Stress can be our biggest enemy or out biggest motivator; we just need to learn how to control it. Tonight, I’ll repost all the tips when it’s time for the giveaway!

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Mental Health Week Intro And Escape Your Prison

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

Isn’t it timely that mental health week would come at the same time as my midterms? 😉 Go figure. Stick with me all week on helpful tips and tricks to think right and there’ll be a giveaway to have you feel well at the end of the week!

Groceries

Groceries

I had plans for lunch that fell through and got rescheduled to Friday, which left me with a free Monday morning–score! Rather than dive right in to midterm studying, I decided to take a nice walk before the rain came to Whole Foods to get groceries. I wanted more So Delicious vanilla coconut milk yogurt while the sale still ran and didn’t have anything planned for lunch, so prepared food sounded like a good surprise.

Honey Garlic Chicken Salad, Steamed Broccoli, Baby Carrots

Honey Garlic Chicken Salad, Steamed Broccoli, Baby Carrots

Honey Garlic Chicken

Honey Garlic Chicken

Talk about being a fussy diner, I took plain grilled chicken thighs from one part of the salad bar and used the honey garlic sauce from the chicken wings tray for some flavor. And flavor there was! The honey and the garlic added such a nice savory-sweetness. I could ave thought of this like a normal lunch and realized a) I payed too much for “just eating” and b) there must have been a hell of a lot of sugar on there. Instead, I decided to think of it like a good meal out, in which case a) I got a bargain on a chicken dish and b) who cares about nutrition? I’m eating out! It’s all in the perception.

So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

That held me over… not nearly long enough. I figured 12 miles running + 2.5 walking would increase hunger a bit, so why fight it? I broke in to one of the So Delicious vanilla coconut milk yogurt I picked up at Whole Foods.

So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

Holy creaminess, batman! This is why I’ve been loving coconut milk and its byproducts so much recently: You get something rich, creamy, and satisfying that’s an alternative to dairy. And it’s comforting to know if I ever went dairy and soy free, I could still get my probiotics(not like that’s happening any time soon!).

I’m not going to lie: The afternoon was very rough, and I did very little other than write and read and generally prep for the 2 papers and 3 in-class midterms I have over the next 4 days. In a lot of ways, my room felt like a prison. Perhaps the biggest obstacle was recognizing hunger verses boredom. I could eat all day if you let me, so I put particular emphasis on that while distracting myself with Betty White on Ellen. Around 4, I could tell that I was legitimately hungry again.

Oatmeal With Maple Cashew Butter And Milk Chocolate

Oatmeal With Maple Cashew Butter And Milk Chocolate

I had oatmeal with maple cashew butter from Tierra Farm and some really good milk chocolate. I can’t believe I ever measured out nut butter on top of oatmeal; nowadays, I’d so much rather not know how much I use and just enjoy it while it’s in front of me 🙂

Scharffen Burger Milk Chocolate

Scharffen Burger Milk Chocolate

Kristie from Vegan In Dairy Land gave me this chocolate as part of blogger’s secret santa and I’ve been enjoying it nibble by nibble since then. It’s sooooo creamy! Think of the best milk chocolate Easter bunny you’ve ever had, then make it natural and gourmet. I think it’s because they use butterfat, and I love that. Where would I be in life without good chocolate?

Red Delicious Apple

Red Delicious Apple

I threw some stuff in the oven for dinner, but was ready to eat right then. It didn’t help I had no fresh fruit around 😦 I went out to the dining hall and grabbed a ton of fruit to last. No red delicious apple could have grown this perfect on its own, but it was definitely a better choice than eating highly processed chocolate candy(not like I’d ever bad mouth which one I was thinking of. I still love it 😀 It just… was not candy time). This held me over nicely through cooking dinner.

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Chipotle Cayenne Parma, Pickles

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Chipotle Cayenne Parma, Pickles

I decided to save the salmon from Whole Foods for a rushed meal I’ll inevitably have later on in the week and cook a grass-fed burger while I had the time. There was also some thinly sliced sweet potato fries with chipotle cayenne parma and 3 pickle spears(gotta have the pickles in there :-))Check out Gina’s post on the pro’s and con’s of grass-fed beef! Apparently I’m making a name for myself 😀 While a lot of you have thought “Wow, he cooks beef in a dorm!” I’ve often looked at it as “I only cook beef”. I’d love to see how my cholesterol is after all of this. I just don’t like dealing with raw chicken or having to cook it through, and raw fish is a nightmare to keep around, so beef it always is! I’ll be happy once Lent is over so I can start adding some fake chicken back into my diet. Even before then, I’d love to get some vegan ice cream or Vivapura goodies in by winning either of these giveaways.

Today’s tip:

Everyday, especially those at rough or difficult times, make sure you have an activity 20-60 minutes to spend on you. Treat yourself or just enjoy alone time. In the end, you’ll be grateful for those moments and you’ll realize that that’s not that much “time lost” in the grand scheme of things; in fact, it’s time gained. Today, that took form for me in the way of a walk to Whole Foods and back. OK, maybe that’s not the most exciting thing. But looking back I am happy to have had the time to not be productive. And it makes me look forward to ideas for activities later on in the week a little more photogenic and edible 😉 Tell me, what have YOU done for yourself lately?

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Half & Half

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

It took about half an hour after finishing this dinner and post for me to be starving; don’t you hate it when the best tasting meals aren’t the most filling?

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple And Brown Sugar

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple And Brown Sugar

This bowl with mighty maple certainly did the trick, especially after not having any grains since breakfast. I love the way a little real brown sugar tastes granulated on top, but pumpkin oatmeal just wouldn’t be right without copious amounts of salt to me. The duo was superb. And this bowl held me through plenty of work into the night, until I decided to make a snack in the name of carboloading.

Raw Avocado Pudding And Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

Raw Avocado Pudding And Vanilla Coconut Milk Yogurt

Maybe my snacks veer more towards fatloading–that works, too! I had 1/2 of my bowl with raw avocado pudding made with xagave and 1/2 with coconut milk vanilla yogurt. Yep, I’m definitely finding a new food obsession in the coconut milk yogurt. What on earth prompted me only to get 2? I also caught the last half of Jamie Oliver’s food revolution, which I don’t think we needed to realize America needs reform, but was a helpful reminder. The USDA requires 2 breads be served at every lunch?! Why not 2 fruits or 2 vegetables–baffling.

1/2 Perfect Foods Fruit & Nut Bar

1/2 Perfect Foods Fruit & Nut Bar

And I finished the night with 1/2 a Fruit & Nut Bar from Perfect Foods. My appetite wanted a whole one; I wasn’t at all hungry–1/2 seemed like a good compromise.

1/2 Perfect Foods Fruit & Nut Bar

1/2 Perfect Foods Fruit & Nut Bar

That left the other 1/2 for devouring when I woke up at 6:40. I’m really starting to prefer eating nothing before my run or waiting to have a full breakfast and run mid-morning. But unfortunately today I needed to run early for timing and my runs are always better with a little snack so snack it was.

12 Miles In 1:45:30

There was no halfassing today. It felt great to be reunited with the treadmill and the today show, and that motivation pushed me through 12 miles, which felt easier than you would know. Even if I may not like a small snack before hand, it sure has results. After that I was a sweaty mess and ready fro a full breakfast.

Oatmeal With Raw Cashew Butter And Honey Maple Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Raw Cashew Butter And Honey Maple Peanut Butter

I topped my oatmeal 1/2 with honey maple peanut butter and 1/2 with Love Raw Foodsraw cashew butter. Come to think of it, I think I just used a full serving of each because they’re both so tasty; I can’t go 1/2 way with nut butters 🙂

Vanilla Greek Yogurt With Lucuma Powder

Vanilla Greek Yogurt With Lucuma Powder

On my yogurt, I added 1/2 a tablespoon a hell of a lot of lucuma powder, which, I’ll have you know, will be my newest food obsession even though this was my first time trying it and I’ll eat enough to turn into a lucuma fruit in 10 days. It’s an alternative sweetener that’s low sugar and made just from the powdered fruit and tastes absolutely amazing–sort of like dates! Apparently, it’s even a popular flavor in Europe? How come I never found lucuma gelato before…

And my plans that had me running early have fallen through and been rescheduled. Fun. At least now I have the day free, and while I could use all that time to work for midterms, something’s telling me to grab more coconut milk yogurt while it’s on sale. Happy Monday! If such a thing exists.

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