A Friendly Face Gets You Places

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

Are you smiling? Should you be smiling? Maybe your team is winning the Superbowl or already did; don’t ask me because I didn’t even know it was on until people downstairs started yelling and I found it on TV. There’s never a dull(or quiet) moment living in the dorms, but I think I secretly like that about it 😀 Backing up 10 hours, I was at home getting my grub on.

Oatmeal With Justin's Chocolate Peanut Butter

Greek Yogurt With Fig Jam

Is it crazy that I brought Justin’s Chocolate Peanut Butter home for the 3 days? I’m just glad I remembered to bring it back 😀 I love sunny Sunday mornings and eating on the floor with the circulars. I don’t know why it has to be on the floor, but it does with me. It feels more homey. The slightly sour part to this breakfast was the Chobani yogurt.

Skimpy Chobani

Does that look a little empty to anyone else, too? I thought mine did yesterday, and then this one was the same. I weighed it and it was only 4oz instead of 6oz. Crazy much? I think I got a bad batch :-/ I bulked it up with a little full-fat yogurt and jam anyway, but not quite sure what was happening at Chobani that day.

We ended up loading the car and starting our drive before lunch, mostly since my grandmother was too busy gambling to eat with us; oh, old people. After the customary “Oops, I forgot that. Let’s go back”, we rehit the road and were at a Whole Foods half way for lunch.

Lightlife Smart Chili, Redwood Vanilla Goat Milk Yogurt

Most definitely a random combination. What I really wanted to do(besides eat of my arm) was load up on veggies, black beans, and guacamole from the salad bar. BUT that would have taken $20 worth of food easily; I hate how they make it cost by the weight 😦 Instead, I kept it cheap and simple by buying these 2 premade things and heating up the chili in the microwave. I must have looked a little silly eating from the bag but it was pretty delicious and totally worth it.

Nintendo DSi

After lunch we grocery shopped a bit; avocadoes were on sale for $1 so I got 7! That’s going to be a lot of pudding 🙂 Then I went to a game store for–what I thought–was a lost cause. My old gameboy’s screen clearly was broken and I knew I needed to get a new one, but hated the thought of $170 dollars for it. I also couldn’t find any good deals on used one, so I went to the store to see if maybe I could get a little money for my old one to soften the blow on my wallet. The cashier who worked with me on the trade in couldn’t have been sweeter; she didn’t quite seem like the typical video game clerk and I was excited for that. Even though she could tell the screen was not properly working, with some sweet casual conversation and a smile she gave me a great discount and knocked $75 off the price of a new one! It goes to show how far being friendly and wearing a smile will get you.

Room Clutter

No amount of smiling, however, can make there be more space in my room(or less food. Either one would work at this point). After we brought things back in, it began to look a bit ridiculous. In my defense: I am eating for a half-marathon, after all 😉 I threw things in places I won’t even remember and grabbed a snack.

Next Generation Organic Dairy Mozzarella Cheese Sticks

Is there anything more perfect than cheese in stickular form? I think not. Thanks, Next Generation Dairy, for sending me this one, too! For the pros, it was very easy to grab and keep working. And it was definitely made healthier by being raw and probiotic. But, oddly, it didn’t taste too much like the mozzarella I was expecting :-/ I think of mozzarella as a more sweeter, mellow cheese and this was a bit tangy for my taste. Maybe it was just the “raw” flavor imposing itself?

Running Stats

Whatever was with the flavor, it fueled me nicely for a 5 mile run. I was itching to get back onto campus and on the treadmill this weekend and it felt so natural, once more! I even managed to keep a friendly face going after that.

Post-Workout Smile

I think I look a little more nervous than friendly, lol. I was clearly excited to get some fresh produce from the dining hall(assuming that’s fresh) and get to some recovery eating.

Apple, Cherry Amaretto So Delicious Coconut Milk Ice Cream

So Delicious! The apple made this healthy 😉 I finished off the pint of this amazing ice cream. My only complaint would be that there were no cherries in this last 3/4 cup 😦 I think I might have scooped them all out last time I ate from this. Oops. It was still so creamy and delicious. And even though I’m not very into the Superbowl doesn’t mean I’m not into football grub…

Salt & Fresh Ground Pepper Krinkle Cut Kettle Chips

Of course we had to buy 2 bags of chips because they were on sale and we had a coupon. And one of them had to be mine. And these just happened to find their way into my dinner. I need people to stop feeding my chip addiction! I have so many dealers, it’s really a beautiful thing 😀

Broccoli With Hot Sauce, Salt & Pepper Chips, Al Fresco Buffalo Style Chicken Sausage

NOTHING says football food quite like buffalo wings–wouldn’t you agree? Immediately I knew I wanted a buffalo style Al Fresco chicken sausage–love these! And I have to think it’s a lot better for you than just grabbing a few wings in your plate, too. On the side I had broccoli with Benito’s hot sauce for volume(!!) and my crack chips. Last time I got these, I mistakenly got the baked variety. I’m sorry but hear you need the krinkle cut. Just tell yourself those are healthy fats, too 🙂

This week I’m looking to get back on track! I don’t know that I was ever off track, so this might just be switching tracks. I don’t know. Trains are confusing. Here’s what I do know!

1. Running. I pretty much run what my body(or head) wants rather than stick with a half-marathon plan. I will keep that up, and here’s what I think should work well for this week.

  • Monday: 8 miles
  • Tuesday: 5 miles
  • Wednesday: 9 miles
  • Thursday: 5-6 miles, time dependent
  • Friday: 8 miles + 30 min biking

9 miles will be my new long run; I have to say that it feels incredibly doable and I’m loving being at high mileage again.

2. Worktime/Funtime. I have an awesome schedule this semester, in case you haven’t heard. But I need to get better about using that schedule. It may be a little late for this week, but my new goal is to go 100% at homework from Friday-Monday when I don’t have class, and then soak up whatever free time I have Tuesday-Thursday without a car in the world(other than attending classes). Who knows; maybe I’ll really bust out the effort tomorrow for that to be the case.

3. Meal Planning. I don’t feel the necessity to go 100% at this. But I do remember that, the 1 week I used meal planning, everything felt incredibly organized, nothing went wasted, and it eliminated time spent thinking “what am I going to make?!”. That’s why I think it’s a perfect thing to work back in, even if it’s only 1 or 2 meals in advanced. For instance, tomorrow’s dinner will be baked maple tofu with roasted sweet potatoes and broccoli.

Lastly, I would very much have a friendly face if I won this Candid Contest; I love my smart balance agave sweetened so I must see what’s with this new “rich roast”

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I Know What It Feels Like…

Posted on February 1, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Coconut Oil Chocolate Bar

… to be a little obsessed with a food. Did anybody doubt that’s the road I’m going down with this coconut oil chocolate? I think it’s pretty much out there.

Chocolate Making Station

… to be a chocolate maker. I might as well be; last night I increased production by 250%! By which I mean, instead of making 1 bar, I made 2 bars and 1 “plop” to go on oatmeal or yogurt later. Besides, “plops” are just fun.

… to think someone deserves a Grammy for their performance on The Grammy’s. At Beyonce, I believe I let out a “Dayamn”.

Banana Oatmeal With Justin's Chocolate Peanut Butter

… to regreat an online peanut butter purchase. I don’t regret buying this chocolate peanut butter from Justin’s; I regret only buying 1 jar of it. I reaaaallly hope they come to the East coast, and fast.

… to end a night peacefully and perfectly with a good dramedy. Brothers & Sisters, don’t ever go anywhere.

… to sleep past your alarm. Yikes! Maybe I got into my sleep too much, because I slept 25 minutes in. In my rush, I managed to get ready and out in 15 minutes, so I was only 10 minutes behind schedule.

… to be a gazelle glared down by a lioness in the African bush. A fellow gym goer got a little close and a little intense staring down my machine waiting for me to finish. She ended up grabbing another person’s, and I don’t even think she ran 1 mile. Part of me felt like saying “Listen, hun, I’ve got business going on here.” but didn’t.

… to go 8 miles again. Woot! It felt great, to be honest. I could see this being a daily distance again soon enough.

… to want to collapse after a run, again(in a good way, of course).

Comfy Clothes

… to throw on the comfiest clothes imaginable after a quick shower: “I’m-not-leaving-the-house” sweats + Zevia 100% cotton t-shirt = heaven.

Navitas Naturals' Sweet Cacao Nibs

… to eat a Mayan superfood. Navitas Naturals sent me some products to review, which my dad brought down on his visit yesterday. These sweet cacao nibs were just screaming to be used at breakfast for some recovery; did you know when you run you sweat out 90% of your chocolate reserves? True fact.

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And Sweet Cacao Nibs

Peanut Greek Yogurt With Organic Strawberry Conserve

… to want to eat a meal again after you eat it the first time. Holy yum! This breakfast was delicious. The salty yogurt went so well with sweet strawberry conserve. And I loooved the contrast of butter toffee peanut butter with sweet cacao nibs. Don’t let these fool you; they were not sweet. They actually reminded me a bit of black olives, but chocolatey. They were delicious anyhow!

… to be 100% justified in how I live my life by science. Look at what it said in a recent Dole newsletter: “A very recent study by the Swiss (who else?) found that highly anxious individuals given 40 grams of dark chocolate (about the amount in a quarter cup of chocolate chips) every day for two weeks experienced a dramatic drop in their blood stress markers — bringing them into the range of those who reported little to no stress.”

… to read Regis And Kelly instead of listen to. Why? Because my roommate apparently doesn’t need to wake up before 11 on Mondays. This is going to be a looong semester…

Pressing Tofu

… to use my Greek grammar book. Have I opened it for a grammar related issue yet? No. But it makes a great tofu press.

Clean Laundry

… to roll around in clean laundry. Have I mentioned I find folding and putting away clean laundry relaxing? That is not then an invitation for you to give me your laundry to fold if you hate it, sorry 🙂

Orange Steaz

… to need a mid-morning pick-me up. Was this needed? Absolutely. I live on the 3rd floor. the kitchen and laundry room is in the basement. Plenty of flights of stairs today!

Baked Tofu

… to make regular use of the dorm kitchen. I’m soooo happy I made this resolution! I’ll admit: It scared me at first. But it hasn’t even been a full week and I know I’m going to be eating so much better in 2010!

… to be technologically hooked up. Does anybody else have one of these? They’re amazing. My friend, Alex(the same one I stayed with in Georgia over the Summer and met in NYC over Christmas), suggested I get one and he was so right; you can charge your ipod without plugging it in to your computer! How brilliant is that?!

Benito's Original Naranja Hot Sauce

… to eat green, right down to my condiments. Benito’s Hot Sauce sent me there original naranja flavor to sample and review. It’s made with organic ingredients from local farms just a stone’s throw away in Vermont.

Vegetable Medley With Trader Joe's Salsa, Baked Tofu With Hot Sauce, Buffalo Bleu Potato Chips

… to need a side of fire extinguisher with your meal. I like things hot, and this was hot! But oh so good. The sauce obviously packed a lot of flavor from habaneros and really gave the tofu a punch. The chips, too, had a nice kick. Surprisingly, my new Trader Joe’s salsa seemed a bit tame? Maybe it was just in comparison that it lacked.

… to watch a show (off and on) for 7 years now. How old am I? Days of Our Lives, don’t ever leave me.

Family Size Buffalo Bleu Krinkle Cut Kettle Chips

… to buy bulk-sized items for one person. If you’ve Buffalo Bleu Kettle Chips before, you’d know why family size was 110% necessary.

… to start doing homework and think “I really should have started this last Friday”.

Unripe Avocadoes

… to be all out of ripe avocadoes. These are all so green! But not in the good way…

… to smuggle out two large containers of food and a banana from the dining hall. OK, technically this is allowed so I wasn’t really “smuggling”. Then again, I don’t think they expect you to be taking all vegetables, and enough to last for the next 2-3 days.

Probiotic Chocolate Avocado Pudding With Coconut Oil Chocolate Chips

… to get into a dish a little too much, much like the raw chocolate bar. At least it’s healthy for me?

… to eat more cocoa powder than is in the Hershey’s factory. Did you know that Hershey’s is actually made with 60% vegetable oil? Vegetable oil. At what point at all should that fit in with cocoa powder, cocoa butter, and sugar? Never, really, but for some reason they make it.

Sweet Potato Snack

… to crave sweet potatoes as a snack, like this veggie-loving blogger(and I’m sure more).

Next Generation Raw & Probiotic Colby Cheese

… to hold in my hands perhaps the most foodie-rific cheese ever. Raw and probiotically enriched? That is some serious enzymes. I have to give a big thanks to Next Generation Dairy for sending me their cheese and cheese strings to review. Not only do they benefit from being made with unpasteurized milk, but they’re fortified with good bacteria, as well.

… to hear a cat being strangled. That’s not fair; there was someone practicing their tuba in the kitchen while I was making dinner, and he was probably a lot better than that and just warming up. Still–if he plays like that in concert, God’s speed.

Stewed Artichokes, Green Beans, 2 Eggs With Colby Cheese And More Colby Cheese

… to be a cheese nibbler. I’ve never quite understood why people always go straight for the cheese at parties or sometimes big chunks will “mysteriously disappear” from the fridge? I think I’m starting to get it. This colby was pretty fantastic. And it was good for me? Don’t tell me that. The 8oz block won’t last the week.

… to be one of those “poor starving college students living off eggs for cheap protein”. Except soooo not. I don’t think those college students use cage-free Eggland’s Best eggs. Or cook them quite as good as me 😉

… to want to win some Vitalicious products from either this giveaway or this giveaway.

… to want to win Chobani from this giveaway

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I Don’t Do Semi-Homemade, Sandra Lee

Posted on December 30, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I don’t do “semi”; I go full throttle or cop-out entirely.

Acorn Squash With Baked Beans And Brussels

Have I ever made baked beans from scratch? No. Do I have any plans to? Not at all. I’m fine with these organic ones from Whole Foods. I threw together this lunch and then literally threw it in the car to get to finishing things. Good thing I’m not the driver 🙂 First we stopped off at the natural food store near me where I bought this foodie find with Christmas money.

Almond Amaretto Herbal Coffee

This isn’t really “coffee”(or “cawfee” because I’m a New Englander). It’s actually dried carob, figs, almond, and other natural ingredients for an herbal drink very similar to coffee. I was a little disappointed when I forgot to add coffee to my x-mas list because I’m such an addict, but in hindsight that was probably a good call because I don’t know how anyone in my family would have found this. I can’t wait to see if it really tastes like amaretto 😉

After the natural store, we went to get the last items on the lsit for New Years from Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods–mainly the meat which we didn’t want sitting in our fridge. I’m so excited because my favorite candy bar protein bar is $1 off the entire month! Expect a lot of those for green snacking 😉 I was parched by the time we finished Whole Foods so I broke out a new soda I found on sale to try.

Steaz Orange Green Tea

I wasn’t aware that there was another stevia sweetened beverage on the market, but these in 4-packs were 3/$8 so I thought I’d give it a try. I’m sure it had caffeine even though it doesn’t say, but that was OK with e at the tie. I liked the flavor; it was a little subtle but I think tea is all about subtlety so I can understand not over-sweetening it. While I was at Whole Foods I also made another purchase with my Christmas money.

Vegan Cinnamon Raisin Rolls

Like I said, i don’t do semi. I’ve made my cinnamon rolls, and now I’m buying these cinnamon rolls 🙂 I still don’t know how they can make these with just whole wheat flour, flour, water, grape juice, canola oil, yeast, salt, and cinnamon! Soo good. After we unpacked, I got working on cooking projects 4 and 5.

Thai Peanut Hummus

When it comes to having company, I never phone it in; I do homemade. In this case, I was making hummus for our guests tomorrow. The first one was my own concoction, with 1 can of chickpeas(drained), 2 tablespoons The Heat Is On, 1 tablespoon each of soy sauce and lime juice, salt, and 2 tablespoons crushed peanuts stirred in in the end.

Sunny Tomato Hummus

The second one was a recipe from The Broccoli Hut. Apparently, food processors have no problems with nuts, but sundried tomatoes are touch cookies veggies. From the itty bits I snacked on from the scoopula, I can tell I loved the first recipe and didn’t care too much for the tomato flavor. After nibbling through these, I decided to eat something real.

Oatmeal With An Egg And The Heat Is On Peanut Butter

I guess this is “homemade”? Hard to get much simpler. I figured while the peanut butter was out I’d use it and have a spicy afternoon snack. The albumen(or egg whites if you aren’t feeling pretentious) were cooked to the perfect runniness. But after this was done I quickly got working on dinner(my thing for the 3rd night in a row).

Al Fresco Buffalo Style Sausage

I went store bought on the main protein. Actually, this was part of the large array of flavors Karen from Al Fresco sent to me a while ago. As a family, we used to always get greasy pizza and buffalo chicken wings on Tuesday nights(real healthy, right? ;-)) so this flavor was right up our alley. I did, however, do something homemade.

Killer Cornbread

Like I mentioned this morning, I had a killer craving for cornbread(say that 5 times fast). After looking at some recipes, I combined them to make my own and hoped it would come out all right.

Killer Cornbread

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cup whole grain cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup sweetener
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. In a bowl, sift together the first 5 ingredients(unless using a liquid sweetener like honey or agave in which case just the first 4). Beat in the egg, milk, and any liquid sweetener if using. Add in the greek yogurt and butter and mix until blended. Move into an 8×8 baking pan and bake until browning on the outside(about 20 minutes).

Green Beans With Hot Sauce, Killer Cornbread With Cream Cheese, Buffalo Style Chicken Sausage

The cornbread was, in a word, killer. It came out perfectly grainy. I definitely had an extra 1/2 a square, and as a family we polished off 7 of the 12 servings. I think that recipe is a keeper! I also really loved this flavor sausage. It was super spicy and didn’t need a hit of hot sauce at all. Watching Paula Dean definitely had me craving cream cheese, which topped the fresh-out-of-the-oven cornbread perfectly.

Where has the day gone? What about the year?! It’s too much to think about. Instead I think I’ll figure out what foodiness is for dessert once all this darn cornbread digests.

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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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