What 2 Semesters Have Taught Me

Posted on May 19, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

To be honest, I wasn’t sure about doing a post like this. Would I be flaming any fires? Would I or anyone be amused? If ever pen was going to be put to paper(or fingers to keyboard), it was going to be when the memories are fresh. So I dove right in…

What I learned…as a blogger

  • I kicked off the year buying my own domain and haven’t looked back.
  • I’ve learned that you might get anonymous commenter telling you you eat too much broccoli, but that really you couldn’t possibly eat too much broccoli
  • You might also commenters telling you your nights are lackluster and plugging their own blogs. But if you enjoy your time, and someone is sitting at a computer screen reading things they don’t even like, who’s really losing out?
  • I had my first blogger meet-up.

What I learned…as a student

  • I learned some really really dirty words in Latin between Catullus and Petronius.
  • I’m a much better essayist than I give myself credit for.
  • Acing a class you take without a grade might be a kicker, but the more important part is taking a class stress-free and for fun.
  • Sometimes, you need to devote a whole week to mental health.

What I learned…as a runner

  • The treadmill is not the dreadmill to me; to me, it’s a friend
  • You meet good people at the gym, some of whom you might inspire.
  • You can always achieve your goal with enough effort(and fuel).

What I learned…as a foodie

  • Grezzo’s first inspired me to eat more raw, and then it closed.
  • I can now cook a mean hash.
  • With an oven, eating healthy doesn’t have to be hard; it just takes time.
  • Garden Grille and Nick’s On Broadway will both be getting my business next year.
  • The Whole Foods salad bar makes the best… everything.

What I learned…as a person

  • It’s OK to walk through a room of people playing beer pong in your PJ’s to get ice cream.
  • Emma Watson can be pretty elusive.
  • The Today Show has become my number #1 and only source of news.
  • If you want to go to bed at 9:30, who the hell is stopping you?
  • I fell in love. Not with anyone, but with Rhode Island. The smallest state has taken a big place in my heart, much like it has for Heather and Sabrina. I don’t know what to say; I didn’t expect for this to happen. I’ve lived in the same house 17 years and this was the first time I could see myself living anywhere else and being happy.

Regrets?

Well, here are my regrets from the last 12 hours.

Almond Milk Chocolate Attune

Almond Milk Chocolate Attune

I regret not eating this Attune Almond Milk Chocolate bar for almost 3 months, because it was delicious. If you’ve ever had a hershey’s almond bar, that’s exactly what this was like, except all-natural and with probiotics. Rich and creamy with a nutty crunch–yum!

Dagoba Chai Ginger Milk Chocolate

Dagoba Chai Ginger Milk Chocolate

I regret thinking I must be a milk chocolate person now and ever buying this. You’d think it’d be good, right? Well, the chai was just too strong, and there was hardly any ginger. Don’t get me wrong: I ate it, because even when chocolate’s bad, it’s good. But I’m just not blown away by Dagoba.

365 OIAJ

365 OIAJ

I regretted pouring hot oats into this jar the second I noticed it starting to slant. But I’m willing to throw caution to the wind and risk a little melted plastic every once and a while. I know; I’m a rebel 😉

Empty Nut Butter Jar

Empty Nut Butter Jar

I regretted waking up to this and thinking it was like a one night stand.

Oatmeal With Almond Butter And Slivered Almonds, Fig YIAJ

Oatmeal With Almond Butter And Slivered Almonds, Fig YIAJ

I regretted not planning out the slivered almonds beforehand, so that when I went to grab them everything fell out of the cupboard and a bag of guar gum even fell into my oats. After a little clean-up, I was good to go with Earth Balance almond butter.

Yogurt In A Fig Jam Jar

Yogurt In A Fig Jam Jar

I regret not getting plain greek yogurt more often, because how good does it taste when you get to add your own jam, really? It’s even tastier when you get to add your yogurt to the jam jar instead of the other way around 😀

But, in general, no regrets. How could anyone live a certain way for the better part of a year and regret it? That’d be a nightmare. I don’t regret that my greatest intake of alcohol over the year has been from vanilla extract. I don’t regret not joining some god awful chorus group that meets past when I want to be in bed. I don’t regret the amount of time and effort I put into things. I just don’t live with regrets, and that keeps me happy. My first day of freedom is cold, and rainy, but I’m pretty sure that makes it perfect for movies, popcorn, and staring at the piles of things to put away thinking “Well that’s just not happening today.” What’s the weather like where you are?

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An Eventful Day In Boston Part 1

Posted on May 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good evening! What’s a perfect way to spend an evening?

Homemade Iced Tea

Homemade Iced Tea

Sipping half-caf iced tea with lemon and stevia. Superb. Last night, I was flipping back and forth between Survivor and Brothers & Sisters. All I can say is WOW to both of them. Brothers & Sisters got a little predictable towards the end, but that didn’t make it any less good. Anyway, the food.

Green & Black's Ginger Dark Chocolate

Green & Black's Ginger Dark Chocolate

I absolutely love this chocolate now on my 2nd bar. And I might have bought another at Whole Foods since it was on sale. Maybe. Anyway, I’ll have to throw up a review page for it. All I can say are ginger and chocolate were meant to be. I also had a handful of baby carrots around this time, which I saw a better option than more chocolate. Again, maybe.

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Local Raw Honey

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Local Raw Honey

Before hitting the hay I made a bowl of oatmeal with Naturally Nutty‘s butter toffee peanut butter and some local raw honey on the side for dippage. Yum! The honey is definitely a new addiction; I snuck down stairs afterwards for another scoop. Did it help me fall asleep? Probably not, but it was good.

Speaking of sleep, I woke up with my alarm, hopped in the bathroom, and then started getting all my clothes ready, and still felt really really tired. After I put in my contacts, I saw that I set my alarm for 6:20 instead of 7:20. Whoops. I couldn’t fall back asleep, so I just made an extra special breakfast.

Cooking A Hash

Cooking A Hash

Practice makes perfect; that’s what the owner of Nick’s On Broadway told me himself. Let’s just think of him as my hashpiration 😉 This one started with earth balance, sweet potatoes, white potatoes, red onion, and basil. I then added some EVOO for a different flavor.

Sweet Potato And Potato Home Fries With Basil, Scrambled Tofu, Mighty Maple

Sweet Potato And Potato Home Fries With Basil, Scrambled Tofu, Mighty Maple

This one was much better than the other ones I’ve made(all 2 of them); I think the earth balance added a much needed butter flavor but from a vegan source. The scrambled tofu was so much simpler than I would have thought: just tofu and nutritional yeast cooked in whatever fat the potatoes didn’t take up. And it was all super tasty and filling.

Maybe it’s just because I’ve been stuck home the past week, but Boston seemed so alive today. Several schools, including my dad’s college, were having graduations, so joyful families were everywhere. I started my day at Whole Foods to get some coffee(the same one where Gisele Bundchen shops), and then meandered to the graduation I was attending.

Cashew Cookie Larabar

Cashew Cookie Larabar

I snacked on a cashew cookie larabar beforehand. It was a terrific ceremony and it was great to congratulate everyone. But rather than stick around I was really excited to go to my favorite Boston restaurant and keep the raw vegan theme rolling. I took the T and walked down to the North End(not easy for someone self-proclaimed “T-literate”). But look what I found when I got there!

"Grezzo Is Closed"

"Grezzo Is Closed"

Yes, it’s true, unfortunately. The owner explains the reasons on her blog here. In the larger picture, I’m very sad to see the very thing that introduced me to raw veganism disappear like that. I felt like it was a Boston institution. On a much more limited scale. What was I to do for lunch? I was starving by this point and in a part of Boston I almost never go. Would I find somewhere good? Would I ever eat raw again?

Have you ever had a favorite spot close down on you? Where was it?

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So This Was Christmas

Posted on January 25, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Do you realize that 1 month ago today was Christmas? Isn’t that a funny thought? I remember the time leading up to it going by soooooo slow and now it’s like the time since has flown by. I’m still “discovering” some of my gifts.

Organic Raspberry Preserve

My mom picked out this organic preserve; it’s not one I’d buy for myself because sugar is higher on the ingredients than raspberries but as a gift it was sweet 🙂 And since it has all the seeds in their, you have to think there’s fiber, too, right? 😉 Raspberry. Perfect to go with some dark chocolate.

Greek Yogurt With Organic Raspberry Jam And Endangered Species Dark Chocolate

Yummm. And because it was organic preserve and endangered species organic 70% dark chocolate, I was totally saving the environment with this dessert. That has to be one of the best 70% out there, too; it just tastes perfectly unsweet without too much bitterness. Nothing was on TV last night so I ended up watching the 30 Rock I missed Thursday. If you’re at all familiar with New England, you have to see this episode. It was all about the gang coming to Boston and filled with inside jokes that had me laughing. That show entirely deserves all the awards it gets. After that, I had a killer craving.

Cornbread Oatmeal With Mighty Maple

For some killer cornbread, that is. Instead, I made some cornbread oatmeal which came out awesome. I substituted whole grain cornmeal for the whole oats, used almond milk instead of water, and added 1 teaspoon agave, a pinch of baking powder, and an egg white. I’m not going to lie and say it was “just like the real thing”, but short of making an entire batch, this was the bomb.

This morning, I just got up too late and didn’t really feel like working out first thing. 2 cups of coffee had my number, not the stairs 😉 Before breakfast, I ended up packing some things for the dorm, and making a favorite around here.

French Toast Roasted Almonds

We found raw organic almonds on sale yesterday so I figured I’d make 1 last batch for my mom(and myself) before I leave. This definitely had the house smelling like Christmas 😀 I used earth balance soy garden for consistency but I’d love to try this with grass-fed butter next time. I still had a little of the glaze left so I put it to good use…

Greek Yogurt With Pancake Syrup

Banana Oatmeal With Chocolate Sunflower Butter

Tastes like Christmas, too! It was also better because of some full fat yogurt mixed in for creaminess. The oatmeal–anything banana and chocolate will fly by me, these days 🙂 I think I’m getting more potassium through soft serve than anything else.

It’s going to rain today. Hard. I think someone mentioned 3 inches? Yikes! So far, it’s only been winding though. And it’s the kind of wind that makes you think somebody through their body against the front door. Joy. Maybe I’ll do a count-to-ten workout once those oats digest(the bowl is most definitely empty and licked clean so it shouldn’t be too long now).

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Isn’t It Ironic

Posted on January 14, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

It’s like rain on your wedding day.
It’s a free ride, when you’ve already paid.
It’s the good advice that you just didn’t take.
Who would have thought? It figures…

Isn’t it ironic…

Steamed Broccoli And Vegetarian Philly Cheesesteak

that I make vegetarian philly cheesesteaks(an oxymoron) and have never had a real one? It’s probably not like the real thing, but a couple servings of Lightlife fake sausage meat, 1/2 an onion, and 2 american cheese squares later and I’m a very happy boy. I love onions. And I’d love to try this with the beef fake meat. A good friend and reader recommended cheese as a way to fit fats into meals. Doh! Of course! I love cheese, and can definitely fit it in 😉 And with this…

Isn’t it ironic…

Salt & Pepper Pop Chips

that when I had all but given up on Pop Chips after a few less-than-perfect flavors, this one brought me right back into the game? It wasn’t quite as good as the sour cream & onion. And I wish that it were seasoned with something other than what tastes like the black pepper I have in my kitchen. That being said, it was seasoned beautifully and I would have demolished this if the bag were any bigger.

Isn’t it ironic… that my grandmother who plays the lottery every day was asking me who doesn’t at all if she should have gotten $10 instead of $5 for hitting 3 numbers? Yes, because these are the kinds of things they teach you in college…

Isn’t it ironic… that the death of fictional characters I hardly ever remember being part of the show will still make me feel bad. I’m so sappy.

Isn’t it ironic…

Peanut Soy Yogurt With Pound Plus Milk Chocolate

that I always top my soy yogurt with milk chocolate? I swear it just goes better together than anything else. I took a square off of my Trader Joe’s milk chocolate bar. You know, the one that weighs over a pound? I’ve got 2 recipes in mind that use it and I just wanted to make sure that it was good quality. So, you know, I was really doing everyone a favor 😉 It was decent, but I think for peanut butter cups it’s a little too sweet, so I’ll melt 3 squares with 1 square Baker’s Unsweetened and baddabing-baddaboom it’ll be perfect. I have such a chocolate tooth for these things 🙂

Isn’t it ironic… that I swore never to join Twitter, and just tweeted?

Isn’t it ironic…

Al Fresco Spicy Jalapeno Chicken Sausages

that I didn’t make any wiener jokes at all while cooking these? A new flavor of Al Fresco to try out tonight. We were only cooking up two because my dad was running late but I was not going to wait with my growling stomach. He came later and we cooked up another.

Isn’t it ironic…

Spicy Jalapeno Chicken Sausage, Carrot Fries, Killer Cornbread

when I microwave raw cheddar cheese? You know, the thing that you buy specially because it still has living enzymes in it you wouldn’t want to kill with high amount of heats? Yeah, well I didn’t do that tonight. I was feeling smart. I thought these sausages were OK; they were definitely spicy but I couldn’t identify jalapeno. But really, with their sodium, they were setting my mouth ablaze(and sadly I added more salt). The carrot fries were delicious roasted. But my favorite part was the cornbread.

Isn’t it ironic…

Killer Cornbread With Earth Balance And Raw Cheddar Cheese

that I’ve said at times that I hate butter AND grains at meals(other than breakfast oatmeal, obviously), and yet I could have stuffed my face with this all night long? Check it out: leftover killer cornbread, microwaved and sliced in the middle where I stuck a big pat of Earth Balance. Then on top I shaved some 2 years aged raw cheddar cheese. Heaven! Oh my God, Oh my God, Oh my God. Those were healthy fats, right? Who cares–delicious. I should freeze some of this cornbread so I don’t do this again so it doesn’t grow mold like last time.

Isn’t it ironic… that I thought I’d never have time to get this post up and get changed before awesome primetime television and I’m clocking in 16 minutes early? Grey’s, The Office, 30 Rock–so much good tonight!

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Get My Goat

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

*Check out my guest post on Tina’s Nuval Blog here*

I’ve never understood the phrase “That really gets my goat,” but right now it has a completely different meaning for me. I think that goat’s milk yogurt a few nights ago resparked my love affair with goat’s milk and now I’m craving it like crazy. According to Avery, it’s actually easier to digest because it’s closer to human milk than cow or soy. I just think it tastes amazing. So please, somebody, get my goat(or yours), start milking, and pass me a glass.

Did you know they make goat’s milk chocolate and goat’s milk fudge? Yes. That is what I was investigating last night, because I couldn’t imagine something to better feed my two loves. Because I didn’t have any of that, I decided to settle for chocolate that has no milk by Vivani.

Vivani Organic 72% Dark Chocolate

In fact, this chocolate has none of a lot of things; look at that ingredient list!

Simple Ingredients

3 organic ingredients and that’s it; I think I’m in love. And this bar tasted great, too! It was 72%, which is 2% over my usual and favorite cocoa content. This was just as good as I would have thought, with a great sweetness and a bitter touch. Chocolate will just never get old, will it?

Yesterday, Bobbi posted the recipe for “the healthiest cookie in America”. I have to admit: I was really tempted to make these(along with a few alterations to make them even more healthy). But we have so much frozen cookies right now, more would be ridiculous. Instead, I took out ingredients to recreate them in “the healthiest bowl of oatmeal in America”.

Better Than Roasted Walnuts

The cookies have dark chocolate(antioxidants) and walnuts(healthy fats) in them, so I grabbed some of the walnuts sent to me from Blue Mountain Organics. I kept trying to read the back of the bag to figure out exactly what they do and I must say that I’m still at a loss. But whatever they do, it must work! These were really light and almost like puffed rice. It was quite odd, but cool. The fact that they were so light made them really easy to break up for presentation.

Oatmeal With Dark Chocolate Almond Butter And Walnuts

I topped it with some dark chocolate almond butter to give it antioxidants and more healthy fats. I’ve probably made healthier bowls than this, but it wasn’t bad. I spent the whole time thinking about how they must “roast” the nuts at a really really low temperature and if I could do that. And about how this should be vegan but wasn’t because Maranatha puts milk powder in their dark chocolate almond butter. Doesn’t that make it milk chocolate technically? >:-(

I don’t think that was enough for a first-thing workout, but I just did not get hungry for anything else and ate that oatmeal minutes before falling asleep. But when I woke up I was still pretty drained. I thought I wanted to do cardio, so I set out for a nice stair session, but ended up only doing 100 flights. After that I knew I needed to just take a break, push it off until later, and eat a meal. The funny thing wa though that nothing really sounded “good” to me; thinking about greek yogurt and pumpkin made my stomach feel like it would have to work to digest, so I tried to keep it as easy and smooth as I could.

Banana Oatmeal With Earth Balance Peanut Butter And Fig Jam

Peanut Butter Soy Yogurt With Salt And Nutritional Yeast

The soy yogurt also sort of felt like a “compromise” that would be tough to digest but at least it was a tasty one. I added a little nutritional yeast to give it sort of a cheesiness more like really peanut butter has. And since I try to fit in protein to start the day, the 6g from peanut flour helped. Since pumpkin was too heavy, I used a small banana for the oats and some fig jam(which would go amazing with anything goat’s milk–just saying).

Now I’m wondering if lunch is going to be as hard to find something appetizing as breakfast. Tofu’s on the meal plan but I think I need something that goes down lighter. You didn’t hear it from me, but there might be a giveaway at the end of tonight’s post, following some recipes 😉 I guess you’ll just have to wait and see…

Or, for an instant giveaway, head over to Brandi’s blog for some delicious sounding jams!

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Buttercream Is Just Too Easy

Posted on January 10, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I am liking the whole meal planning thing. It’s soo good knowing how much food we really have and when it’s for. It’s interesting to find out things like, while it’s fun to have so many flavors of chips, they just don’t cut it for the entrees. Well I have things sorted out through Friday and it looks like we’ll be eating well 😀 For lunch, ironically, the first planned meal was “do what you want”. This let me eat some leftovers and my parents have their pasta.

Lightlife Savory Chicken Tenders, Microwaved Potato With Salsa, Garlic Broccoli

I’m the best at eating 1 serving of something and letting the rest sit around for far too long, so this time I decided to nip the Lightlife tenders before they went past savory and to funky. On the side I was craving some of the really spicy salsa we picked up at Market Basket, so I had a plain, starchy potato. So good! Seriously, this has some heat. Before we left to do errands I wanted to get all my food processor projects out of the way.

Banana Bread Balls

I made some of Jess‘ balls! her and Avery really know their balls(I’m sorry, but I just had to say it). We had leftover banana goodness bread sitting in the back of the fridge so I combined that with 4oz of cream cheese and made balls to get cold. After those hit the fridge, I threw out some of my less successful nut butters and whipped up a new one.

Organic, Raw Almond Butter With Fair Trade White Chocolate And Strawberries

This one was definitely a winner! I just used 7oz of raw, organic almonds and mixed that up with 1/2 of my favorite white chocolate bar ever, the Divine white chocolate with freeze dried strawberries. I haven’t tasted this yet but the aroma is incredible–just like the chocolate! And I bet the nutrition isn’t terrible for something that must be flavorful. I can’t wait to put these over oats. My mom wanted to go to the mall to look for clothes for herself, and I easily obliged, mostly on account of this:

Seat Heaters

While it was 30 degrees outside, my butt was getting 76 degrees of heated seats. Aww yeah. My dad dropped her off at Macy’s and we went somewhere far more entertaining: Target! I contimplated getting the newest Harry Potter film, but passed up until it’s cheaper. Hell, maybe I can befriend Emma this semester and get it as a gift from her? Well, I can dream 😉 I did pop a drink open while shopping.

Mango-Melon Sobe Lifewater

Walking around looking at things is tough work, you know! It was decent. I like the melony flavor because it reminded me of Summer, despite the fact that the weather oh so disagrees with me. I did end up getting a new pair of running shorts for 3.something on clearance 70% off. I’d say 90% of what I wear came from the Target discount rack or was a gift to me; I never buy expensive clothes. I’d rather eat well and wear the shopping bag, haha! Speaking of eating well, while we waited for my mom we went to the Framingham Whole Foods which is the only place so far I’ve been able to find the best protein bar I’ve ever had.

Cookie Dough Luna Protein

So good, and yet, not this afternoon. We picked up 2, and I thought I really wanted to eat one of them then, but I only got 2 or 3 bites in.

Cookie Dough Luna Protein

While these are tasty, they’re pretty much a candy bar unless you’re working out. And I knew I was hungry for food, so this would not do at the time. As much as I hate not finishing bars, I wrapped the rest back up for God knows when and waited until we got home to eat something real. I threw a really quick bowl of oatmeal together when I got in the door.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Barney Butter

That definitely hit the spot so much more than the rest of the bar would have. I like Barney Butter because it’s pretty much how I imagine Jif or Skippy would be if they made those in almonds. I was a lot happier after that and ready to keep working with Jess‘ balls. I melted together a mish-mosh of chocolate: a Dark Chocolate Newman’s Own Organics bar, a Super Dark Chocolate Newman’s Own Organics bar, and 4 Unsweetened Bakers square. Really, I was just using things up because we didn’t have a bag of chocolate chips I wanted to use, but I like the resulting bitter chocolate.

Chocolate Coated Banana Goodness Bread Balls

These came out great. And they were so much simpler than I would have imagined! I’m keeping these in the back of my head for something different to bring to a dessert party that no one else will have(now, anyone want to invite me to a dessert party ;-)). I had leftover melted chocolate, and for a moment thought “What am I going to do with this?”. Where was my mind?! I quickly figured out what to do with it.

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups

See? I knew if I made them once I’d be making them again real soon. I filled these with some Earth Balance peanut butter since that’s agave sweetened and would work with the bitter chocolate. After that, I had one last thing to “whip” up.

Earth Balance Natural Buttery Spread

Vegan Maple Cinnamon Buttercream Frosting On Maple Cupcakes

Remember those maple cupcakes I made a few days ago? Well, most of them hit the freezer, but I kept a few out for my parents’ anniversary. I made a simple, small batch of vegan buttercream frosting 1 tablespoon Earth Balance butter spread, 1 tablespoon maple syrup, 6 tablespoons powdered sugar, and a dash of cinnamon. I always thought buttercream was something incredibly complex to make but this could not have been simpler! Mine might be a little lumpy, but that’s just because I was lazy. Knowing how easy it is to do is just a little dangerous. I mean, this is “healthy” in the sense that there’s no cholesterol, but it’s no superfood 😉 If you can believe it, cupcakes were not on the meal plan as dinner.

Grilled Steak, Green Beans, Nog Spiked Butternut Mash

This meal was so great; I can’t remember the last time I had something on the grill! It just has not been the right weather but we wiped off the snow and fired it up, and the meat came out nice and rare like I love it 😀 For sides, we steamed green beans and mashed butternut squash with 1/2 a cup Silk Nog. That last combination never gets old. I could practically eat a bowl for dessert. Now, I don’t think anyone has started picking at desserts yet. Then again, I haven’t been keeping a hawk eye on any of it, so who knows what’s left. I know there’s certainly no lack of things for me to eat up tonight.

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Really? The Millennium?

Posted on December 28, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Really? All the radio stations here are doing a “look back at the millennium so far”. Do they realize it’s been 10 years and a millennium is 1000? Can’t we look back on the decade and be happy? Or even just the year because that’s all that’s ending? The media is never happy until it blows something entirely out of proportion(although, to be fair, they kind of called it on the Tiger Woods thing).

Soy Meat Stuffed Pepper With Cheese, Onion, Brussels

We had so many errands to run today, I literally took my meal “to-go”. The Lightlife sausage was yummy, as always. I don’t care if soy doesn’t agree with me; I’ll eat it till it kills. First we stopped at the bank to cash Christmas checks(chaching). I forgot my identification but thankfully the teller was super nice and my dad was able to cosign for me. Then we went to Macy’s to try and exchange the food processor.

Black & Decker Food Processor

Thankfully, this woman was not as talkative as the teller. She asked no questions and I didn’t have to lie at all! I just said “We bought this here two days ago and the chute piece is broken”. 2 college semesters of linguistics is a dangerous thing to wield because I really know lawyer speak 😉 After that we went to job-lot for some nuts to grind(1.50 for a pound of peanuts!) and then on to Whole Foods. 2 days ago they said they’d have my bacon chocolate bar today. Today they said they’ll have it Thursday. Ugh. We need to go to Whole Foods Wednesday to get food for a New Years Eve party so we’ll just go to one of the stores I know carries it then.

Banana Oatmeal With Banana Pudding And EB Almond Butter

When we got home after 3 hours of errand running, I was pooped(and hungry). I had a bananarama in this dish, with 3oz mushed banana in the batter and topped with 1/2 a container Zensoy banana pudding. The flavor to this was… interesting. It was a little watery but I think that’s characteristic of soy. The flavor wasn’t awful, but wasn’t perfect.

Earth Balance Almond Butter

I also found this at Job Lot for $4. I think that’s at least half the price of Whole Foods. I bought it from my Christmas fund for good measure. It was good but I think I wanted more of a funkier taste, like Smart Balance has. Maybe add more agave after putting it on the oats? Still, a great deal and great nutrition.

Tofu, Rice, Broccoli

I’m in charge of dinner(well, I thought I was until my mom came home 80 minutes before expected but I’m still going to hold the reigns). I decided I’d make maple tofu for everyone. They aren’t the biggest fans of tofu but I think the prospect of maple will convert them. I’m also throwing in rice, which my mom will probably eat mostly and I won’t touch, and broccoli fries. I hope this all comes out disaster free!

Bulk Bin Nuts

I also picked up these nuts at Whole Foods. Anyone want to take a guess a) what type they are and b) what I’ll be grinding up? 🙂

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Fusions

Posted on December 28, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Somethings were just meant to be: Peanut Butter and Jelly, Lucy and Ricky, Me and Emma Watson, Ross and Rachel–the list goes on and on. And the truth is that these pairs work better together more than on their own. So yesterday I was looking for things that worked better together than on their own.

Pecan Butter With Cashews

My first inspiration came from Artisana’s Pecan Butter. I really enjoyed the hint of cashews in this to make it more of an artisan nut butter so I thought I’d try to replicate that with the pecans I picked up from the natural food store and some Oh Nuts! cashews. I won’t reveal the “secret” ratio but I think this came out damn good and would get a 10/10 from my own scale. I will reveal that I roasted them all so the flavor would be more pungent, but I didn’t add any salt.

Butterscotch Peanut Butter

Butterscotch and peanut butter are definitely another flavor combo that was meant to be. I think Kath would agree with the number of times I’ve seen butterscotch chips on her oatmeal. For this I used 16oz raw peanuts I dry roasted, more butterscotch extract than I’d care to know, stevia, and 4 teaspoons brown sugar. The flavor is definitely unique; it’s not my favorite but it seems like one of those I might randomly crave at some point. After I played around on nutritiondata.com, it was time for dinner.

Thai Curry Chickpeas With Hot Sauce, Brussels Sprouts, Buffalo Bleu Chips

I think Frank’s Red Hot sauce + anything is amazing(as attested by multiple bloggers around here). My mouth was on fire after all of this. There was also lemon-thyme salmon on the table but a) I didn’t think the lemon-thyme and hot sauce would work and b) I didn’t feel like having meat this meal.

After dinner, as disgusting as it was, I was determined to find the receipt for the food processor so that I can work at getting a non-broken one. It just so happened to be in the same bag of trash which my mom threw out ALL of her receipts from balancing her checkbook. This was really like finding a needle in a haystack but we got it.

Macy's Receipt

A little worse from ware but proof is proof. I think I continued to wash my hands for another 20 minutes to get off the coffee grounds and tofu, and then turned on I Love Lucy and picked up more fusion food.

Xocai Nugget And Power Square

Obviously, chocolates bestie is more chocolate, so I tried out Xocai’s nugget and power square. If you want to get technical, both of these are also fused with dried acai berries to increase their ORAC value, but really chocolate is chocolate. I liked these, but surprisingly they weren’t dark enough for me at the time. They tasted like a good 55% but I was expecting them to be more bitter-sweet. After a few good I Love Lucy episodes(a timeless show), I found more fusion in the kitchen.

Barney butter And Peach Amaretto Jam

Oatmeal With Barney Butter And Peach Amaretto Jam

These were soooo meant to be together. The jam was a Christmas present to my parents and is unreal; it has so much amaretto flavor! And it’s totally giving me ideas for more nut butters. The Barney Butter oddly separated in the squeeze pack so half was really hard and have was liquid. At least it still tasted OK. Lastly I had a 2nd daily probiotic source and hit the hay.

Pop Culture Chocolate Chip Granola Bar

This morning I must have been lazy because I slept in 40 minutes. It is vacation, after all 🙂 But then I got “in the mood” for a good workout. I did my core with

  • 240 varying arm rotations
  • 5 sets of 7 chair swings
  • 40 squats(thinking back, I might have forgotten this one)
  • 70 rowers’ arms
  • 40 second pose hold
  • 70 standing marches
  • 100 sit ups
  • 100 air kicks
  • 70 tricep dips
  • 70 side crunches, both sides
  • 100 crunches
  • 50 second crunch hold
  • 40 push-ups(a little messy by this point)

After that I threw in 100 flights of stairs, which took about 30 minutes but flew by to some good ipod tunes. After that I knew exactly what was on the menu for breakfast.

Vegan Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Pecan Butter And Brown Sugar Vegan Butter Spread

Peanut Flour Yogurt

Pecan butter, earth balance, and brown sugar were most definitely all meant to co-exist(We are the woooorrld. We are the futurrre). I’ve come to think there is nothing better than to be able to think “I’m eating homemade pecan butter” and know it’s your home that made it! Now I just need to figure out how to homemake a cinnamon roll. Peanut flour and greek yogurt were equally meant to be for a 1-2 protein punch. Today’s agenda most definitely includes a trip to Macy’s to try and get a new food processor piece, and hopefully addressing 1 or 2 recipes on my to-do list.

A huge vitatop giveaway from Iowa Girl!

And a Wild Bar giveaway from Chocolate Covered Katie!

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French Toast Morning

Posted on December 13, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today’s the last day to enter this giveaway!

For anyone wondering what the flourless peanut butter cookie recipe was, it was 1 cup peanut butter, 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1 egg, 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, and 1/2 teaspoon baking soda. I wasn’t particularly looking for making this vegan or with grains, but thanks for all the suggestions! I love finding and reading new reipes to try another day. Last night everything was set for It’s A Wonderful Life.

Christmas Tree And Fireplace

Of course there was one big party pooper.

Montana

It was past his bedtime, anyway. I decided to whip up a batch of my double chocolate pillows, except with white chocolate this time instead of regular chocolate chips, and earth balance butter spread instead of canola oil.

Double Chocolate Pillow Dough

I love the batter for this recipe! It’s so ridiculously thick, you think you’re doing something wrong but you’re not. You just need to work work work to get the flour mixed in. They came out pretty nice, though there were too many white chocolate chips and I think a tablespoon of them got stuck to the pan.

White Double Chocolate Pillows

Surprisingly, I wasn’t craving one when they came out. My mind was on another cookie.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookie

These are like crack. I did a little history. Not going to lie–throwing my notebook into the fireplace crossed my mind once or twice, but I resisted. Towards the end of the night I was exhausted and just wanted to curl into bed with some peanut butter and chocolate.

Oatmeal With Earth Balance And Advent Chocolate

Endangered Species Milk Chocolate With Peanut Butter

The Earth Balance peanut butter was something like Smart Balance, but a little bit of a let down. If you’re looking for a more neutral taste but with the same health benefits, it’s probably a great buy. I, on the other hand, was hoping for a really flaxy funky flavor that Smart Balance has. The chocolate bar was the real let down. I had high hopes for it but–I can’t. I don’t want to think about it.

When I woke up this morning I knew it was a french toast morning. First up I wanted to start on something I’ve been thinking about for a while.

Oh Nuts! Almonds

Oh Nuts! sent me some almonds a while back. These things were huge! And smelt so fresh. They were also raw, so I decided to throw them in a 350 oven for 12 minutes to roast them. Then I melted together 1/4 cup maple syrup, 1 tablespoon earth balance butter, vanilla powder and cinnamon and coated the almonds in that. Then I threw them back in the oven for 10 minutes or so to dry a bit.

French Toast Almonds

Voila. I haven’t tasted them yet, but they smelled delightful(and the bit of extra syrup I licked off my fingers was mighty fine, too). This also called for a french toast breakfast.

French Toast Oatmeal With Maple Syrup And Smart Balance Butter, Al Fresco Sausage Links, Breakfast Tea

This was all OK, but clearly if I wasn’t loving these sausages it meant my appetite was off. I haven’t ran in 2 days and I also haven’t gone to the bathroom in 2 days; directly associated? I think so. It’s made me not want anything. Ugh. All else I could tolerate was some very very dense calories.

Smart Balance Peanut Butter

Besides that, not much else special has happened. It was Sunday lunch with the family. Lunch? I really just wanted to find a treadmill and hopefully get things moving rather than put more food in. But I was also cranky, which meant I didn’t have enough food. I hate contradictions like that.

Fake Chicken Patty, Parsnips, Sweet Potato, Roasted Broccoli, Ketchup

I honestly don’t know how I got this all in(sans the ketchup bottle). The chicken patty was much better baked than the last tie I had them microwaved. And the sweet potato was just calling me with it’s roasted aroma. But now it feels like sitting is discomfortable. I’ve asked to leave to get back on campus a little earlier than usual so I can hopefully hit the gym before doing some intense work on my Latin final paper; now that I have a direction, I’m excited to just work and finish it!

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It’s A Wonderful Day

Posted on December 12, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I need to make this snappy; It’s A Wonderful Life is on in less than an hour!(I get excited over this movie)

But first, a shout out to a new peanut butterrific blog, We’re Totally Nuts! You may remember I reviewed a few of their peanut butters here a while back. Can’t wait to see what recipes they come up with!

Well now I hate to start this post today this way but there was no peanut butter at breakfast today. Instead, I thought I’d try out walnut butter!  It took 3 spreads to make these oats.

Berlin NH Maple Butter, Pumpkin Cream Cheese, Artisana Walnut Butter

Pumpkin Oats With Walnut Butter, Pumpkin Cream Cheese, And Maple Butter

Plain Oikos With Vanilla Stevia And Vanilla Sugar

This felt like a Sunday morning breakfast… even though it’s Saturday. I was none too crazy about this walnut butter at first but it definitely grew on me. Once I sample and review all of Artisana’s flavors, I might have to go out and buy myself this one. Although really I loved the maple butter the most(though who wouldn’t?). The yogurt was super good; for anyone new to or worried about stevia’s flavor, adding a little sugar really helps neutralize it(all the better when it’s wanilla bean infused sugar from Whole Foods’ bulk bins!).

Zevia Root Beer

Not going to lie, I also had this in the a.m. But it’s OK because I was out of my PJ’s… for most of it. I ended up doing something I’ve been meaning to for a while.

1 Cup Organic Shredded Coconut, 1/4 Cup Powdered Sugar, 1 Tablespoon Earth Balance Butter

Sweetened Coconut

Ever notice how they don’t sell organic sweetened coconut? Well, they don’t; it’s like you can have something unhealthy but organic. Umm, hello? They’ve been making organic chocolate for forever. Oh well. I sweetened some myself this way; it didn’t knock my socks off(mostly because I’m not an intense coconut lover) but it’s way better than regular. I’ll think of some way to use it up. I also made some cookies.

365 Peanut Butter

Flourless peanut butter cookies, to be exact. Would you believe I haven’t made these ever? No excuse; I just hadn’t. I used this peanut butter because all my other ones are in my dorm. No need for a recipe page, because I used the oldest recipe in the book: 1 cup peanut butter, 3/4 cup sugar, 1 egg, vanilla extract, baking soda. I substituted 1/2 cup of sugar for NuNaturals baking blend to up the fiber and down the sugar. After these came out I made myself a random but delicious lunch.

Brussels And Broccoli With Soyaki Sauce, Oikos With Caramel Mustard And Sweetened Coconut

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookie

I said it’d be random. The veggies were drenched with soyaki–perfect. I was worried how the mustard would be on lightly sweetened plain yogurt but it went just fine because it’s a pretty sweet mustard to begin with. This cookie was also really really good. I didn’t expect them to puff up so nice but it was like a big, crumbly spoonful of peanut butter.

Afterwards I picked out a topic for my 3rd paper; gotta keep working! And then remembered that my parents were going to a neighborhood party for dinner and I needed something for myself. Long story short, we ended up at Job Lot, which has nothing in terms of proteins but some really awesome foodie finds!

Organic Raspberry Agave Nectar, Earth Balance Creamy Peanut Butter, New England Clover Honey

The peanut butter was only 2.50 and the agave nectar 3 dollars–incredible. They also had blueberry and maple flavored. We also got some protein(salmon) from Hannafords. When I got home, I couldn’t resist.

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookie

Seriously heaven–all 3 of us agree(but I didn’t tell anyone else it has stevia in it because they might become afraid). I decided to put in my Gettysburg movie and start that even though I knew I wouldn’t get half way through. And I made a movie snack.

2% Chobani With Raspberry Agave

Oh my God, this stuff is like pure raspberry candy. Seriously awesome. I’m going to stalk Job Lot while I’m home for break. The movie was really good but I only got through 40 minutes until I had to think about dinner.

Fuji Apple

And by “think about dinner” I mean eat an apple and tell other people what I’d like them to cook me for dinner; isn’t that what being home is all about? To be fair, I did make the popcorn.

Burnt Popcorn

And burn the first bag. Way to go, Evan. Not so much fun when they cost almost a dollar each(I opt for Newman’s because I’m crazy like that). All in all, though, dinner was good.

94% Fat Free Buttered Popcorn, Salmon, Roasted Carrots And Brussels

I think if you’re willing to eat rice with a little butter and salt with salmon, you should be willing to have popcorn. Plus, it’s a whole grain, so it’s like brown rice–awesomeness. Roasted vegetables are definitely one of the joys of being home(along with baking). By the time I finish this post, I’ll also probably have finished this.

Popcorn

OK, I’m definitely stopping after a 2nd bowl. The next form of carbs I eat will be peanut buttery and oaty, too. And now to go enjoy the movie!

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