Where No Coconut Flour Has Gone Before

Posted on February 11, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning(at least I hope it’s still morning by the time I finish typing this)! Don’t forget that I pick a yogurt contest giveaway winner randomly tonight!

Uli Mana Raw Desserts

Uli Mana Raw Truffles

Last night was “one of those nights” where I just needed something really good for dessert. I pulled out my little treasure trove from Uli Mana and picked out 2 of their truffles to try out. These are made with cacao powder, cacao butter, agave, and a few other ingredients. The first thing that surprised me was how rich and decadent these were; the inside was like super soft and melty chocolate–delicious! I think my favorite was the Goji Cherry Raw Truffles

Goji Cherry Raw Truffle

So so good. I would have thought the nibs would add an unpleasant bitterness but they actually worked super well here; I could easily eat a container of these in one sitting. They were just that good. Also good but not quite as much so were the Dark Cacao Raw Truffles. Don’t get me wrong–I loved these as well. But the flavor was a little 1-dimensional whereas the other truffle had so much going on to make it exciting. Either way was a winner, though. All these superfoods had me excited to try something else exotic.

Coconut Flour Oats With Chocolate Coconut Butter, Hemp Seeds, And Goji Berries

Coconut flour oats! Can you say yum? The Bob’s Red Mill product actually made this more of a batter than oats, but it was still super nice; I think it needed either more sweetness or saltiness to really be “interesting”. On top I made a new butter using Xagave and Tropical Tradition’s coconut oil along with other flavors. Holy yum! This was jsut as I expected cacao bliss to be. It’s not perfect, but I can’t wait to play around and make a big batch once it is! And then some hulled hemp seeds and Navitas Naturalsgoji berries made this feel like a real superfood treat. I was still craving a little chocolate, though, so I had to have a little more.

1/2 Raw Vegan Chocolate Bar

Even though it was just 1/2, the sugar did not help me sleep soon or well; I ended up waking up around 2am but feeling absolutely paralized from a bad dream. I’m honestly surprised(and happy) I didn’t jolt up screaming and punching only to wake everybody else up. Somehow, I still managed to get out of bed at 6:15 to hit the gym.

Running Stats

I would not say getting up at 6:15 to run is ideal. BUT it is only 2 days a week I have to do it, and for that I can definitely deal. I was debating running 5 miles and doing a 30 minute bike or just running 7. To save my legs for 8 miles tomorrow, I went with the former.

My Gym

The gym was completely empty; that I was not expecting. At least I got my choice of a few televisions(and chose The Today Show and Cartoon Network, as always). I have to say that I do not like the bike and this might have been “my last ride”. I just find it uncomfortable and it’s hard to keep my HR over 100. Elliptical? More running? I’ll find something to entertain me. For breakfast, I turned back to my new friend…

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

Pomegranate Yogurt With Coconut Flour

More coconut flour! It’s becoming an addiction; this time I added 2 tablespoons to greek yogurt and the result was fantastic. For flavor, it came out a mellow but present coconuttiness. In terms of texture, this made it super thick and almost like soft serve that wouldn’t melt(that much coconut flour has 6g of fiber!). It may look like there’s not much chocolate peanut butter there, but that’s because I stuck it back in the microwave for the oatmeal to surround the giant clump o’ nut butter; that way, when I got to Greek and opened up my oatmeal, the inside was still perfectly soft and melty.

On my way back from class, I ordered the last book I need for classes–$51 out of pocket! It’s not even noon and today’s already expensive… Anyway, I’ve now sampled all the products sent to me by Navitas Naturals and so am recapping my reviews for them! As always, any of these can be found under the Product Reviews page at anytime.  My general impression was that a lot of care was put into all the products I’ve sampled and that really shined through. I don’t know that the items themselves were my favorite, par say, but I definitely look forward to exploring the company more and seeing what else they have to offer.

Sweet Cacao Nibs

8.5/10: Cacao nibs are as close to the rainforest as you can eat when it comes to chocolate. So pure and raw, these were an excellent treat. “Sweet”, however, was a big overstatement. These might have been sweetened with sugar, but make no mistake in that they were still quite bitter like raw cacao nibs. No matter which was you spin it, the flavor was far too bitter to be called sweet. I liked the big clumps which were almost more like granola and the tiny individual nibs for a good variety over yogurt and oatmeal. If 100% raw cacao nibs aren’t your thing, this just might be a nice stepping stone.

Goji Berries

9/10: Why don’t you see goji berries more around America? Because the real deal come only from the Himilayas. And that’s what these are: The real deal. Navitas Naturals brings the Himilayan superfruit to your pantry. Of course, the real question when it comes to dried fruit is whether they’ll be soft and not stale. These, honestly, felt a bit on the cusp, but I’m hoping it was just my mouth fooling me and I’ll get used to the true texture.

Mulberries

9/10: I can’t say I was in love with these berries, but I can’t find much fault with Navitas, either. I’m really impressed that they can grow these organically in their native Turkey and deliver them to your home. The berries themselves read like a pill with their nutritional benefits, but it’s hard to know whether they’re any better than any other berries. Navitas claims to dry them to “the perfect” moisture content; I don’t know if perfect is the word, but at least they aren’t stale. If you’re dead set on getting mulberries, by all means get Navitas Naturals’. Just looking for something new and different to try? Look again.

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Sweets And Cheese

Posted on February 5, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If I had to summarize in two words what I ate today, it would be “Cheese” and “Sweet”. I’m pretty sure those are the only two tooths I have in my mouth(and I embrace that).

Pirate's Booty Aged White Cheddar

The first culprit was this bag of Pirate’s Booty. I was sent a ton of flavors to review; none were particularly “sweet” so I went for the cheesiest mother of them all. At the same time, I had the oven going and baked some maple tofu.

Aged White Cheddar Pirate's Booty, Maple Tofu, Steamed Broccoli

Maple Baked Tofu

Maple baked tofu–simple, sweet, and so(y) delicious. The tofu came out particularly good because I had it pressing all morning and changed the towel thrice; when you get a ton of water out, you really notice the difference. These corn puffs were good, but didn’t really blow me away; I liked the flavor but the texture was just OK and overall they were “meh”. Maybe one of the other flavors will impress me more.

While I was watching this I got around to watching my DVRed Oprah with Michael Pollon. I know–I’m so behind! But I really liked this episode and was able to connect with it a lot. The part with Alicia Silverstone and Oprah talking about their business had me rolling on the floor! I do get what they’re saying, though. I also found it funny that Alicia “slips up” on cheese sometimes. It gets the best of us 😀

Count-To-10 Workout Sheet

In the afternoon I did my Count-To-10 workout. This’ll be perfect for any readers lamenting being stuck in doors for the storm! In case you forgot, it’s super simple:

  • 10 flights of stairs
  • 10 push-ups(15 for me)
  • 10 flights of stairs
  • 10 sit-ups(20 for me)
  • Repeat 10 times.

Obviously, I use a checklist just to keep track. While I was doing this, the mail came, and I got a “sweet” surprise.

Uli Mana's Raw Desserts

Uli Mana sent me a sampler of some of their sweet and raw treats. The seal on them was broken, but since these came straight from a closed USPS box, I assumed they were untampered and safe.

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Goji Berries And Raw Chocolate Sauce, Raw Hemp Brownie

Umm, sweetest post-workout recovery meal ever? I think so. Where to start? This brownie was simply amazing. I’ll count it as my “Cookie Friday” treat(like I don’t have one of these every day). This was the 3rd bought raw brownie I tried, along with the 2 that I’ve made, and it was by far my favorite; it tasted sooo fudgy! I think the secret must have been in the cacao butter. I need to find me some. Any good brand suggestions? Or even just brands? The pudding was delicious and antioxidant rich with Navitas Naturals goji berries, but I added a little something to sweeten it up even more…

Xagave Raw Agave Nectar

Xagave sent me some of their agave nectar to bake and experiment with. Again, where to start? Simply put, from the 1 time I’ve used this so far, I’d highly recommend it. I mentioned on Monday(and even got some agreeance from readers!) that the agave nectar I used just didn’t taste sweet at all. Well, that was “Trader Joe’s raw agave nectar” for anyone curious. This, on the other hand, tasted sweet. It tasted really sweet, like I’ve been told agave nectar should. I can’t wait to bake more with it! Since I don’t prefer sweets for dinner, it was back to eating cheesy.

Next Generation Organic Dairy Raw Probiotic Garlic Parsley Cheddar Cheese Sticks

Yet another flavor of Next Generation Organic Dairy cheese to review. I knew this’d make a great addition to dinner not only because it’s no-carb, and high-protein and fat, but because of the added probiotics.

Lemon Cauliflower, Garlic Parsley Cheddar Cheese Stick, Grass Fed Beef Medallion

Dinner was also particularly good since we found out that Whole Foods(at least the one in Providence) sells grass-fed beef; sooo much cheaper than from a restaurant! And perfectly cooked so long as you know what you’re doing 😀 It tastes fantastic and I had my whole medallion. I was a bit underwhelmed though with this cheese stick; it tasted cheesy for sure, but the complexity somewhat stopped there. I suppose if it were too garlicy, that also would have been a problem, so I’m not sure where the perfect balance would have been. I do just love that they even make these in stick form; perfect for probiotics on the go!

And now, I’m thinking more sweet than cheesy for dessert. Wouldn’t you agree 🙂 For some interesting reading, here’s an article on the benefits of goat’s milk yogurt!  That’s a bandwagon I can get on. And here’s a jam giveaway and a granola giveaway

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A Little Clunky But Not Wholly Displeasurable

Posted on February 5, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

1) That’s what she said.

Packed Bag

2) That’s a pretty good description of coming home for the weekend, too. I definitely forgot how much I loathe packing. But, I managed to keep it very simple with 1 bag and only 2 peanut butters(plus my backpack and some dirty laundry). Annoying? Yes. But not as wholly displeasurable as having to completely move out and then back in over break.

Like I mentioned, our first stop was Chocolate Fest! There was tons of samples throughout the stores of different chocolate creations. First, I scoped it all out. Then I decided that some of it was skippable(I mean, I can cover a banana in melted chocolate, too :-|). Finally, I dove in 😀

Chocolate Cherry Braised Beef

Raw Chocolate Truffle

Mexican Chocolate Chili

Salmon In White Chocolate Butter Sauce

Sweet Scoops Mocha Mudslide Frozen Yogurt

The braised beef–was absolutely fantastic! It might have been my favorite of the night. It might just be my inner carnivore saying that. But I really loved it because first you got the really fatty meat flavor that just fell apart in your mouth, and then you got a kick of cherry at the end. The raw truffle was really good, too. I could totally make this at home, though(and I snatched the recipe to do so). The chili was another winner; I told you I was a carnivore 😀 The salmon, on the other hand, was really bad. What were they thinking if they tasted it? I thought it had potential because white chocolate and chickpeas are a fantastic combo, but apparently that need not apply here. And, for dessert, some Sweet Scoops frozen yogurt. I’ve actually been thinking of buying that flavor for a while, and it was really good. I don’t know, though, if it’s worth the price compared to Elan’s Decaf Cappuccino frozen yogurt(which also is decaffeinated and so better for night time snacking).

That actually wasn’t that much, so when we actually got home after an hour I was hungry… for the supper not waiting for me 😦 I decided to just throw something a little cooky together that’d be veggie-tastic and filling.

Brussels In Grass-Fed Butter Sauce

Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Goji Berries And Coconut Oil

This dinner was a bit clunky but not wholly displeasurable. Actually, it was pretty tasty 😀 I don’t think I’ve had brussels in 2 weeks! What a shame. They really soaked up the butter. On top of my pudding, I added some Navitas Naturals Goji Berries and coconut oil; I loved the goji berries here for a good dose of antioxidants! The coconut oil tasted a little out of place, oddly :-/ I think coconut butter would be better here(butter is always better 😉 But that’s another story). Speaking of Gojis, I had a sweet surprise waiting for me…

Goji Gourmet Cookies

How yummy does that all look? Among a few packages I got was this one which I won from totalfitgirl’s contest(ironic, I know, but there weren’t any gender rules for entering as far as I know :-)). I’m pretty sure it was only for the chocolate cherry cookies, and the rest of this was thrown in by my friends at Goji Gourmet. Thank you! Now I’m stocked well with one of my superfoods.

Was it just me, or was Grey’s not so good last night? Should I have gone with The Office and 30 Rock? That’s quite possible. A few more things made coming home a little clunky. A) I had noo toothbrush. Whoops. B) I had no alarm clock and freaked out until I dug out a really old one. I then decided that I wouldn’t even set it and let myself sleep in. C) I found out that one item I specifically came home for might very well actually be in my safe at school. Ugh. After most of that was resolved, I was happy for oats.

Cornbread Oatmeal With Mighty Maple

Cornbread, because I could. In the batch went 1 egg white(sorry, yolk, but I didn’t need you right then :-(), 1/4 teaspoon xanthan gum and 1/2 a teaspoon aluminum free baking powder. This came out perfectly corny.

Like I said, I didn’t set my alarm this morning and slept in a full hour. A full glorious hour. You need to take advantage of things like no drunk people in the hallway and nothing to do once you’re actually up 🙂 A few more things that made my trip not wholly displeasurable:

Trader Joe's Oatbran And Tofu

Food! More specifically Trader Joe goodies my mom grabbed on her way home just for me(like anyone else here would be picking out tofu or know which one to get) 🙂 You can bet that I already have some tofu pressing for lunch as we speak(and using the oatbran as a weight! Haha). Beyond that, I also used the oatbran in breakfast.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Nutritional Yeast And SB PB

Plain Oikos With Vanilla Stevia

A bit cheesy, but not wholly displeasurable. No wait–wholly pleasurable because it’s a bit cheesy. That’s how I would describe the pumpkin/nutritional yeast/smart balance combo. There’s something so “homey” about it. AND now I’m about 1 bowl away from OAIJ!! It’s shaping up to be a splendid trip home.

Language Lesson: This is directed to no one in particular; this is just something I thought of as I was making my breakfast and want to address now. If you are buying your Greek yogurt and buy more than 1 container of Oikos, please do not say that you picked up some “oikoses”. That is just wrong. Oikos is a Greek word meaning house. It is the nominative, singular form. For plural, you’ll want to say you picked up some “Oikoi”. Sounds a little funny? Welcome to Greek. If you all want to be super overachievers, do 1 better by saying “Oikous”. That’s the correct form when it’s the object of a verb. But, I’d totally be happy if I ever just heard Oikoi, too 😀

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