Uncooking On Memorial Day

Posted on May 31, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I find it ironic that on the epitome of BBQing and Grilling is when I decide to have another one of my raw-kicks.

I started my morning with a run, which called for prefueling with chocolate. Lindt is obviously not a raw chocolate brand but still tasty, and even non-raw dark chocolate has a good amount of antioxidants. Chomp on 🙂

I only aimed for 9 miles but ended up doing 11 after I got way too in to my new playlist. I think I’ve listened to some songs by Adam Lambert and Sugarland 5+ times over the past few days. Whoops?

All I’ve been craving lately for lunch has been raw salads. We seriously don’t have enough raw veggies in this house to satisfy that! I used half an avocado squirted with lime juice as the “meat” here, and around it added raw corn, lemon garlic marinated olives, and onions caramelized in a little EVOO(obviously not raw but cooked onions taste 1000 times better than raw in my opinion). The result: delicious. This was like some backwards guacamole salad. Loved it!

Zevia Twist

It seems my sweet-tooth, which has been in and out recently is back. A Zevia twist tasted perfect mid-afternoon for a boost. Just like a diet Sierra Mist!

The piece d’ resistance of the afternoon was this Memorial Day sundae. I really want to make a maple walnut flavor ice cream! Along with soooo many others. But since there’s only so much room in our freezer, I took some of the ice cream I made with raw milk and covered it in NH maple taffy and freshly toasted walnuts. Yum! Except whole milk ice cream is just too icy as I’ve found out; you really need half and half to make something decently creamy(or coconut milk at a 2:1 ratio with water for a vegan half and half).

It turned out that I went from being the only one with plans for Memorial Day to being the only one home. How does that happen?! Not going to lie: I was a little upset. But instead I decided to make this a golden opportunity to try a new recipe I’ve been dying to make.

First I snacked on some Crazy Richards chunky pb straight for some energy and got the food processor out.

The recipe I wanted to (not) cook was raw taco meat, so I went straight over to Averie’s blog and found her super simple recipe. Here it is below; I followed it to a T except used her variation of swapping out the spices for predone(Trader Joe’s) taco seasoning.

Averie’s Raw Vegan Taco Nut “Meat”
1/2 C Raw Almonds
1/2 C Walnuts
1/3 C Sun Dried Tomatoes loosely packed (If using oil packed, may slightly reduce amount of olive oil added)
1/2 Tsp Chili Powder (or to taste)
1/4 Tsp Cayenne Powder (or to taste)
2 to 4 Tbsp Olive Oil (or hemp, flax, etc.)
Optional: 1 Tsp Salt (or to taste)

Wow! I’ve never had something so flavorful. And I will be making this again. It certainly wouldn’t suit if all you want is that beef-flavor or meat. But if you’re just looking for something fun and tasty, this totally works. I ate it along a gingerade kombucha and home fries made with white potato, sweet potato, red onion, olive oil, salt and pepper. Of course, really Averie would probably hate this dish because it has about a days worth of sodium in it(and I’m eating it with a salt shaker ready and standing by).

And now I’m watching Knocked Up on TV. I love the movie, but some things are just better done when you have the house to yourself 😉

Where do you go for new recipes? This is something I always get asked by people I cook for. Almost all my recipes come or were derived from blogs, FoodNetwork.com, or Allrecipes.com. Maybe this is a bias crowd to ask this question, but really I have to think this is what the internet is for!

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I’m The MacGyver Of Baking

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

Yesterday, my parents went to see our relatives while I stayed home studying. My aunt, ever-thoughtful, sent back some cupcakes for me. It was really thoughtful; but there was something that worried us. If you asked her what they were, she’d say “organic, gluten-free, vegan, dairy-free, nut-free…” the list goes on. She did the same when I made my cousin these cupcakes. And they didn’t seem gluten-free. In fact, after a little investigating, it seemed likely they weren’t and she just got confused. Well I was OK with that and letting my family have them. Except then I wanted cake. I really wanted cake.

Simple Chocolate Cake

Simple Chocolate Cake

I broke out the Sweet Utopia cookbook sent to me by Book Publishing Co. and flipped open to the first recipe in the book: a simple chocolate cake. Perfect. I made a few alterations to the recipe(switching to gluten-free flours, almond milk for soy milk, and olive oil for canola oil), and 28 minutes later I brought life into this world.

Vegan, Gluten-Free Cake

Vegan, Gluten-Free Cake

Isn’t she a cutie? But I wanted cake fast so I cut a slice and stuck it in the fridge to cool quickly. While that was cooling, I made a 2-minute buttercream frosting by mixing earth balance, powdered sugar, and vanilla powder in a small dish with a fork. It was almost too easy.

Cake With Frosting

Cake With Frosting

I went from thinking I’d have a chocolate bar for dessert(but not really happy with that) to 1 hour later having a vegan, gluten-free chocolate cake with vegan buttercream frosting all with whatever ingredients I had on hand. I think that qualifies me to be the MacGyver of baking.

Organic Smooth Dark Chocolate

Organic Smooth Dark Chocolate

Vanilla Oikos With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Vanilla Oikos With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Organic Baby Carrots

Organic Baby Carrots

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

After that excitement, I just couldn’t sleep; this happens almost every Saturday night and it’s so annoying. I figure this last time just might be because of my last final. But I definitely needed more fuel than usual for the 2+ hours I was awake. I’m not even sure when I got to bed, but this morning I stumbled out of bed late and just hungry.

Pineapple Chobani, Oatmeal With Crunchy PB, Maple Syrup, And Maple Butter

Pineapple Chobani, Oatmeal With Crunchy PB, Maple Syrup, And Maple Butter

Oatmeal With Crunchy PB, Maple Syrup, And Maple Butter

Oatmeal With Crunchy PB, Maple Syrup, And Maple Butter

I’m still trying to find out the secret to making a really amazing maple peanut butter. It’s harder than you’d think! And the secret ingredient is not coconut oil as it turns out. Oh well. This bowl was still really good with crunchy maple butter. And now I’m eating a Chobani as if it were a parfait–not stirring the jam up first. It’s pretty good this way.

What do you hate most about restless nights? In the time I’m awake, all I can think about is the stuff I could have done with that time rather than lie in a dark room and toss and turn. And here’s a fun chocolate giveaway to enter.

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It’s Time To Get New Pants

Posted on May 11, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Health | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I noticed a funny thing yesterday. My jeans which have always been a bit big are starting to fit better, and the ones that have traditionally fit well seem a bit tight and uncomfortable. Being a guy, my first two thoughts were a) I’ve been shrinking everything in the laundry or b) someone else had them be altered to mess with me. That’s when option c hit me.

It might actually be me who’s growing out of them

My gut response was the typical “healthy living blogger” way of seeing it: I’ll eat out a little less, cut down on the sugars, and things will go back to the way they were. And then I thought about it. What if I didn’t adjust to fit the pants; what if the pants adjusted to fit me?

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

I’m still healthy and eating my superfoods.

Rehydrating

Rehydrating

I’m running faster and further than ever before.

Local Hereford Beef

Local Hereford Beef

And I’m enjoying eating out including brunch at fantastic new places.

In short, why would I want to change any of this? I love this! Underneath clothes, we’re all naked; what does it matter what size they are? Be healthy, but be happy. And if happy leads you to a shopping spree at that incredible French clothing store, Targe, with a buttload of gift cards to get jeans from the 75% off rack, so be it.

Who else is willing to throw out the old and put on the new with me?

Whole Foods' Salad Bar Food

Whole Foods' Salad Bar Food

Not only did I go to Whole Foods last night, I ate out, too. This was my last dinner of Providence, so I was prepared to make it a good one even if I had the ingredients for something much more humble back at my room. I got from the salad bar roasted carrots, potatoes, and onions with paprika, avocado rubbed kale, and golden sesame tofu. All delicious. All making me grow out of my pants. All good.

They didn’t have the coconut almond chip coconut milk ice cream I went all the way to get. Bummer, right? I was pretty let down. That’s when I made a plan and got the regular coconut ice cream and add Tierra Farm‘s almonds.

Coconut Ice Cream With Almonds

Coconut Ice Cream With Almonds

I really liked the bare coconut flavor. This ice cream had just 6 ingredients and 11g of sugar per serving–unreal! It was a little chewy even because of the coconut flakes. It was definitely a good ice cream for anyone who likes to add their own mix-ins.

Aztec Crunch Lulu's Bar And Cashew Butter

Aztec Crunch Lulu's Bar And Cashew Butter

I never got hungry for oatmeal, but I did still want the nut butter and I can always go for chocolate. I was worried whether I’d like Aztec Crunch because I’m not a fan of raw cacao nibs(part of the crunch). But this really blew me away. It was raw, but not bitter. It definitely had a solid crunch. One of the ingredients is said to have magical soothing powers; I’m not sure if it was the chocolate or the ingredient but I was definitely soothed.

Of course, the other side to new pants is the completely metaphorical side: fitting your surroundings to fit how you want to be. As much as I love oatmeal, I’m willing to toss it by the landside if I’m craving something else. And this morning, I had a huge white potato craving.

Maple Salmon, White Potato Home Fries

Maple Salmon, White Potato Home Fries

Home Fries

Home Fries

Home fries, anyone? I think I’m still getting past the shock and awe that I made these and not some restaurant, because they’re so delicious. It was just 1 1/2 white potatoes tossed in a pan for a while with some red onion in EVOO. It would be great with sage or rosemary but I didn’t have any. To make this more of a meal and less of a breakfast, I added flaked salmon with maple syrup and sea salt. Definitely not as good as the home fries; but that’s where the extra maple syrup comes in handy.

And how about this for new pants: I’m moving out tonight =-O

If the pants do not fit, you must acquit

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Unplanned Is Better Than Not As Planned

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

In case you missed the weekend:

I live off to-do lists and plans(you should see my to-do list for today. Yikes!). It should then be understandable that I’m no happy camper when things don’t come out 110% like I planned.

Vegan Tiger Fudge

Vegan Tiger Fudge

The “new recipe” I alluded to was vegan tiger fudge: a layer of vegan chocolate fudge with a layer of peanut butter fudge on top. After a few hours, the top never set, so while this was tasty, it wasn’t wholly “fudge”. Boo 😦 It’s back to the drawing board for that recipe. On the bright side, my vegan chocolate fudge tastes as good as ever.

As opposed to not-according-to-planned, things that are unplanned have seemed to have great success recently. Betty White never planned that she would actually get on SNL, and she was hysterical. Amy Adams in Leap Year didn’t plan to fall in love with the Irishman she hired to take her to Dublin(even though it was the most predictable plot-line ever), and that worked out for her. And this dinner, while completely made on the fly, was fantastic:

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

EVOO Seared Sweet Potato And Chickpeas

How could something so simple be so good? This was just sweet potato chunks roasted and then seared in a little olive oil with the chickpeas added at the end to finish them off in the oil, and heaped on spinach. It was 5 ingredients with the salt(gotta have the salt), and that was all this needed. Best of all, it combined two of my favorites: sweet potatoes and chickpeas. Love it! Anyone else want to boast a kitchen success story out there?

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Chocolate Peanut Butter

Cascadian Farms Organic Vanilla Chip Bar

Cascadian Farms Organic Vanilla Chip Bar

Maple Sugar Maple Leaf

Maple Sugar Maple Leaf

It was certainly unplanned that I turn in to the carb king between dinner and breakfast this morning(add in the tiger fudge from before and you’ve got yourself a few meals there). And I’ll admit: It had me feeling a little down. Until I realized what those unplanned carbs could do for me.

12.1 Miles In 1:46:48

12.1 Miles In 1:46:48

As a sort of “Last Hurrah”, I ran on the treadmill watching The Today Show and my other morning television for a strong and unplanned 12.1 miles. Hurrah! My entire gym set up is a luxury of convenience I will sorrowfully miss over the Summer.

Mighty Maple Oatmeal, Pineapple Chobani, Gingerade Kombucha

Mighty Maple Oatmeal, Pineapple Chobani, Gingerade Kombucha

After all that, I’m happy to be sitting and having a well-balanced, moderately-sweetened breakfast with Mighty Maple and a pineapple Chobani. And, yes, that would be a Gingerade Kombucha at breakfast no less. It’s the only thing keeping me sane today between my to-do list and walking up and down 3 flights of stairs to cook and do laundry.

What do you do when a recipe’s a flop? My gut response: Call the neighbors over. If it’s something bready, I can usually crumble it over yogurt and call it granola. But with anything chocolate and sweet, just hand me a spoon and let the pity party commence.

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Can I Petition A Petition?

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

Happy Saturday! I for one am more than happy to be closer to Summer and living at home with a full kitchen and refrigerator. Have you all seen this petition yet? Basically, it’s a petition for Obama and his family to become vegans for their influence. Uhhh, what?! I fully support those who are vegans, or vegetarians. But how on earth could anyone want to dictate how another person eats? Especially when some of those are just little girls?

If I posted this when I first heard about it, I’d have some not-so-choice words, but I think by now my minds mulled it over to speak better of it. If anything, we should be preaching tolerance–tolerance of those who have a different way of thinking or path in life. This petition shows no more tolerance than the intolerance you could find against vegetarianism in a Southern cattle farm community. More importantly, you can eat ethically and aware without being a vegan, which is part of what Michelle Obama has already done through her time in the White House. What do you think of this petition? Besides that it’s going nowhere, I think it’s a little rude. And–as always–I’m on a mission to show you can eat well and ethically without devoting yourself to any label.

Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter

Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter

I had this little bowl of Naturally Nutty Vanilla Almond Butter and a scoop more before hitting the gym. What is it about almond butter that makes me just want to eat out of the jar?! It’s so delicious! Especially with a little vanilla. I felt extra fueled after that.

10 Miles In 88:59

10 Miles In 88:59

Fueled enough to runner a faster 10 miles as the last training run before my half-marathon. That feels weird to even think about. Enough, enough. Lunch!

Maple-Walnut Oil Salmon With Craisins And Golden Raisins, Baby Carrots, Hemp Oil Greens

Maple-Walnut Oil Salmon With Craisins And Golden Raisins, Baby Carrots, Hemp Oil Greens

Motivated by Kath, I’ve been getting in to canned salmon for extra omega-3’s without much fuss. I mixed mine with maple syrup and walnut oil for something packed with even more essential fats and tasty! Over the top was Tierra Farm‘s dried fruit and baby carrots, with salad dressed in Foods Alive hemp oil dressing.

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

An organic apple for dessert!

Trilogy Synergy Kombucha

Trilogy Synergy Kombucha

On my way back from my grocery trip, I picked up a trilogy kombucha at a cafe because I felt a little down about the whole trip :-/ A lot of it was on the store’s sale, which was good. But I probably could have saved more in coupons if I was better organized. At least I didn’t blow the project cleanout challenge too much. And you can’t say I don’t eat what I buy:

Soy-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Sundae

Soy-Free, Dairy-Free Chocolate Sundae

Isn’t it dreamy? My whole point in going was to get some whipped cream to make a sundae. They didn’t even have regular–just non-fat sugar-free or Rice Whip, which is dairy and soy-free. The latter seemed less processed, so I went with that and made a sundae with So Delicious chocolate coconut milk ice cream. The fudge sauce was simply cocoa powder and agave nectar mixed together. Voila! OK–the Rice Whip tasted REALLY fake; if you’ve ever had rice milk, just imagine that in an airier form. Besides that, this Friday sundae was delicious and a perfect before-dinner treat 🙂

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Mozzarella Daiya

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries With Mozzarella Daiya

If Obama wants to eat his beef and have his vegan cheese, too, I fully support that! I made a 1/3 a pounder hamburger but undercooked it far too much 😦 I really wanted to try the daiya so instead of eating it straight from the bag I made some sort of vegan cheese fries–YUM. This was better than mozarella cheese; it was crack. I’d be lying if I said I’m not planning on having it again today(maybe twice).

Endangered Species Dark Chocolate With Deep Forest Mint

Endangered Species Dark Chocolate With Deep Forest Mint

I love mint. I could eat a salad made of mint leaves. This bar doesn’t have a great minty flavor like alter-eco’s mint bar. But it was what the Whole Foods I was at had, and I don’t terribly mind it.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Almond Butter And Coconut Milk

And some oatmeal with homemade chocolate almond butter because nowhere near me carries Justin :-/ Oh well, now that I’ve pinned down the secret to making good homemade chocolate nut butters, I’m less enthused to go out and pay $10 for someone to do it for me.

This morning I woke up nice and early to not run. Maybe it defeats the purpose of a rest day to keep yourself from sleep. But I want to be nice and tired tonight so I can go to bed early and sneak 8 hours in somewhere before the race.

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Cherry 2% Fage With Almonds

Cherry 2% Fage With Almonds

I love Fage, especially their cherry flavor. Unfortunately, it’s about expensive as they come around here. At least it’s on sale at Whole Foods this week. The cherry here tastes just like the cherry dips at Dairy Queen! Yum! Next time I’m trying full fat. The peanut butter–again, since I’ve figured out how to make cookie dough nut butter, I’m less enthused about paying someone to do it for me. Besides, this one seems really fake since half of it melts over oats and the other half is still solid :-/ Until it’s gone, though, I’ll live it up and enjoy it.

What are your thoughts on mint? I made my gluten free chocolate brownies with a lot of mint extract once and was told it was like mouthwash; hell, I thought they were great! The more mint, the better in my opinion. Even though it’s often paired with chocolate, I wouldn’t mind a dessert exclusively with mint as the flavor. Speaking of chocolate, here’s a Bubble Chocolate Giveaway. Now I get to go to my very first race expo! I hope it’s nifty.

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Raw Foods And Fried Foods

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

If you asked me what I loved to eat, I’d probably answer fried foods and raw foods. At least the one balances out the other, right? The easiest ways I find to get raw foods in is a fresh salad:

Maple Spinach Salad With Raw Cheddar, Avocado, Maple Tofu, And Maple Walnuts

Maple Spinach Salad With Raw Cheddar, Avocado, Maple Tofu, And Maple Walnuts

Let’s call this the “garbage can” salad because I threw whatever I wanted to get rid of on it. And it worked! The base was spinach tossed with maple syrup and walnut oil. In the mix was 1/2 an avocado, a Next Generation Dairy cheddar cheese stick, and leftover maple tofu, topped with Tierra Farm‘s maple glazed nuts. I made this to-go to eat in class like always on Tuesdays but it didn’t make it that far 8-| I just couldn’t resist; and it was so tasty! I went with my hunger and ate it and went off to class.

Almond Protein Plus Boomi Bar

Almond Protein Plus Boomi Bar

Mid-afternoon I snacked on an almond protein plus Boomi Bar. I’ve always wanted to make my own bar like this: throw it all together and hope it works. I like that this was 3 simple ingredients: almonds, honey, and whey protein isolate. I didn’t care much for protein isolate, though(I rarely do). And the flavor wasn’t quite as good as Perfect Foods Bars(reviewed here).

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

I had an apple after taking another Greek language test. If you remember, I made a small fortune off of taking them earlier in the semester, and I’m hoping the same for this one. Although since I’m competing against juniors and seniors who know much more than me, I’m wary.

Raw Brownies

Raw Brownies

I also found time to “bake” raw brownies this afternoon, except I used a different recipe with a few new, secret ingredients. I’m not sure how they’ll be once they set. And the added ingredients definitely added a ton of fat. The batter was tasty, at least.

Food Processor

Food Processor

My favorite thing about vegan desserts is that you can always eat the batter. I think I had a little too much of this. Blech. But it was good! Can’t wait to see how these come out.

Preparing Dinner

Preparing Dinner

For dinner I gave my first attempt at frying! I filled my pan with a good coating of sesame oil and laid down some tofu strip. I let them brown for about 3 minutes on each side.

Sesame Tofu, Broccoli And Snap Peas With Soy Sauce And Sesame Oil

Sesame Tofu, Broccoli And Snap Peas With Soy Sauce And Sesame Oil

Golden Sesame Tofu

Golden Sesame Tofu

And then for my Asian-inspired dinner. I probably could have let the tofu go for longer; it certainly didn’t taste like Whole Foods. But I was really proud of this! I feel like a whole new culinary style has opened up to me, and I can start to use a Paula Dean cookbook 😉 Is a deep fryer in store for me over the Summer? Probably not. I’ll let Whole Foods handle that.

Do you/Did you ever walk around the neighborhood a lot? Usually, after dinner(especially a good, big one), we would walk around the neighborhood for fun and for health. I feel like when the weather’s nice everyone’s out around where I live. I can’t wait for that during the Summer again! And I definitely feel like I could use a walk now. It might not be as good without the neighborhood, but I’ll find somewhere.

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Did You Know?

Posted on April 12, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Did you know my favorite part of Mondays is being able to do the laundry and have a completely fresh closet of clothes?

Did you know 95% of people with gluten-intolerances don’t know they have it or haven’t yet been diagnosed?

Nature's Path Organic Mmmaple Pecan Chewy Granola Bar

Nature's Path Organic Mmmaple Pecan Chewy Granola Bar

Did you know the Nature’s Path Mmmaple Pecan contain milk byproducts? I would have thought they were vegan. Still tasty, though, and probably the most nutritious out of their line!

Did you know instead of pressing soft tofu you can bake it for 90 minutes at 350 instead and it will come out with the same texture?

Maple Baked Tofu, Roasted Broccoli And Sweet Potatos, Maple Glazed Nuts

Maple Baked Tofu, Roasted Broccoli And Sweet Potatos, Maple Glazed Nuts

Did you know maple baked tofu now has its own recipe page? It does! It was also the theme of this lunch, with roasted broccoli, sweet potatoes, and some Tierra Farm‘s Maple Glazed Nuts. Mmmm, maple.

Did you know if you put even just a little liquid(in this case, maple) on the outside of a sweet potato, it prevents it from developing an ugly skin burn while roasting? Only a blogger…

Liberte Raspberry Goat Milk Yogurt With Dark Chocolate Chips

Liberte Raspberry Goat Milk Yogurt With Dark Chocolate Chips

Liberte Goat Milk Yogurt

Liberte Goat Milk Yogurt

Did you know goat milk is easier to digest than cow’s milk because it’s closer to human milk? You can thank Averie for that factoid. It’s also deeelicious if you ask me; I had to pick this up when I was at Dedham Whole Foods because it’s so rare, too. I love the combination of dark chocolate and raspberry, too. Yum!

Did you know a new study suggests that eating high calorie/high fat foods most of the time causes imbalances in the body similar to heroine that then creates a compulsion to eat only high calorie/high fat foods and more of them? Did you know I’m screwed if that’s true?

Did you know this used to be my favorite flavor of ice cream when I was younger? It also just one Turkey Hill’s annual flavor competition. It’s taken years, but I’ve finally found my au naturale replacement.

So Delicious Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl And Chocolate Coconut Milk Ice Creams

So Delicious Chocolate Peanut Butter Swirl And Chocolate Coconut Milk Ice Creams

That replacement would be So Deliciouschocolate peanut butter swirl coconut milk ice cream, which j’adore. The only drawback(besides the price tag) is it’s a little chalky in texture, which is odd because the other flavors aren’t. Humph 😦 I’m willing to try different brands.

Empty Pint

Empty Pint

Did you know law of the freezer states when you finish one pint you are thereby allowed to replace it? I already have in mind what I want to replace it with…

Did you know you should always let cheese come to room temperature before serving it? It’s more pungent and flavorful that way. On the contrary, if you stick it in the microwave, that just makes it a melted mess.

Chickpea Salad With Cheddar, Mulberries, And Hemp Oil Dressing

Chickpea Salad With Cheddar, Mulberries, And Hemp Oil Dressing

Chickpea Salad With Cheddar, Mulberries, And Hemp Oil Dressing

Chickpea Salad With Cheddar, Mulberries, And Hemp Oil Dressing

Did you know you absorb more nutrients when you use a fat-based dressing on a salad? Even more reason to pour on the Foods Alive hemp oil sweet & sassy! I swear I could drink that stuff. Besides that, my salad involved chickpeas, Next Generation Organic Dairy raw & probiotic parsley cheddar cheese, and Navitas Naturalsdried mulberries.

Did you know this is the first time in a long time I’ve celebrate Meatless Monday? By celebrate, I mean I just didn’t have a meat craving.

Tell me something I don’t know

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How Gluten Makes Me Feel

Posted on April 12, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In case you unplugged over the weekend, yesterday was definitely the highlight and worth a look. “Gluten” has probably been googled more in the last year than the rest of the time google has existed. It’s definitely emerged as a new “buzz word” and you hear people refer to it as everything from a “diet” to a “fad” to a “cleanse”.

Brownie Sundae

Brownie Sundae

Faux Buffalo Chicken Salad With Steamed Broccoli And Avocado

Faux Buffalo Chicken Salad With Steamed Broccoli And Avocado

These are the foods I [foolishly] ate over the weekend with gluten in them. Tasty? Of course. And when we eat a food, we’re often focused on how it will makeus feel. But there’s more to feeling than immediate taste, and that’s where the downside of gluten comes in for me. Since Saturday, I haven’t particularly been hungry. At all. In a sense, one thing gluten does to me is take away the ability to know how and when to fuel properly. The only way I know I need more is if I’m cranky for more. For anyone who does a serious amount of physical activity, this isn’t only inconvenient; it’s dangerous. My biggest weapon in fighting this is simply awareness. Be aware that your regular hunger’s gone, be aware that gluten can do this, and be aware where gluten is hiding. On top of all this, gluten has other side effects for me, like irregularity and bloating.

My point is not to scare anyone off gluten. I say eat and let eat! And if gluten works for you, eat it. Some people shun soy, while I thrive off of it and love not having to worry about the ethical treatment of an animal. Other people restrict themselves from cheese; I have around 30 cheese sticks in my fridge and another couple of pounds back home(I kid you not). What my point is is that it’s up to us to be aware of how certain foods make us feel, and equally important how they make other people feel and respect that part of them. If you feel you might have any of the same symptoms, there is a way to test for gluten intolerance and I plan to try it over the Summer. And lest you think that you could never eat normal again without gluten, well… you might be right…

Maple Jalapeno Gluten-Free Muffin

Maple Jalapeno Gluten-Free Muffin

There was nothing normal about this muffin. It was, however, gluten-free and freshly baked from Garden Grille. And you know I can’t pass up anything maple.

Maple Jalapeno Gluten-Free Muffin

Maple Jalapeno Gluten-Free Muffin

I realize now I forgot to ask if it was a muffin or a cupcake. I couldn’t really picture it being eaten at either time, but I had it for dessert. It was good! A little odd to have something so spicy right after dinner. But the maple was definitely a nice and subtle sweetener, and the texture was just like a muffin(cupcake?) should be.

Strawberries

Strawberries

I snacked on some strawberries while watching the Brothers & Sisters movie. I planned on going to bed early to make up for Saturday’s lack of sleep but I just got way too into the movie and watched the whole thing. Did anybody else Wasn’t it good! But I feel like they could have taken the drama just one step further, and not leave us hanging at the end.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Sunspire Milk Chocolate Peanuts

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Sunspire Milk Chocolate Peanuts

And about halfway through I made a bowl of oatmeal with Justin’s chocolate hazelnut butter. I love that it’s vegan and hazelnut is the first ingredient! Because of the gluten problems I mentioned, I wasn’t actually hungry for this. But I wanted to make sure if I was running in the morning, I was well fueled.

10 Miles In 86:07

10 Miles In 86:07

And I was. I started out my morning by waking up naturally at 6:44 while my alarm was set for 6:45–love that. Then I rocked out 10 miles while catching up on the Today Show. I love getting the workout done first thing; it just makes the rest of the day go so much more efficient!

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk, Soy Yogurt With Sunspire Milk Chocolate Peanuts

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk, Soy Yogurt With Sunspire Milk Chocolate Peanuts

Breakfast was only “boring” in the sense that it was the same ingredients as last night; otherwise, it tasted delicious 😀

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk

Oatmeal With Chocolate Hazelnut Butter And Coconut Milk

I can’t believe how much coconut milk I still have from that one can. How could I possibly use it all up before it goes bad?!

Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanuts

Soy Yogurt With Milk Chocolate Peanuts

I sweetened the soy yogurt a bit with Madhava’s vanilla agave after I realized I bought plain instead of vanilla and it tasted just right. It was definitely nice not to have the spice of jalapeno 😉

How do you differentiate between a cupcake and a muffin? I’m curious about this one. I’ve seen people change their opinion on something based solely on the time when they eat it. If I ate a slice of chocolate cake for breakfast, would that make it oatmeal? For me, a muffin has more grams of whole grains than of sugar, and vice-versa. If you’re eating a “muffin” without any whole grains, you might as well be having a cupcake.

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Sundae Friday At Ben & Jerry’s

Posted on April 9, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Happy Friday! I can’t get the lyrics “Everybody’s working for the weekend” out of my head; if that was true for you, well good news: it’s here! I have plenty of homework, though, and not much else on my mind for the time besides that; I hope you’ve something more enjoyable on your plate. Speaking of plates(or bowls)…

Maple Tofu And Coconut-Maple Chickpeas Over Spinach

Maple Tofu And Coconut-Maple Chickpeas Over Spinach

For lunch, I threw pre-cubed, firm tofu from the dining hall in the oven after a little maple syrup bath and had that on one side of the plate. On the other, I added a little coconut milk to the remainder of a can of chickpeas and drizzled maple syrup on top, sprinkled with some sea salt. I’m not sure what made me think to put maple syrup and coconut milk together but I’m so glad I did! Seriously, this combination was divine. I loved having this all over spinach, too, because that just soaked up the juices.

Ben & Jerry's

Ben & Jerry's

My afternoon was pretty tediously spent on assignments which I won’t bore you with. Around 3:30, I stepped out into the rain for a field trip to Ben & Jerry’s on Thayer St. Over the past 5-6 weeks, I’ve started a tradition of “Sundae Friday”. This Friday, I couldn’t have been more enthused for a sundae.

Brownie Sundae

Brownie Sundae

While there, I ordered a brownie sundae. First, they heated up a brownie from the display case. I chose Fair Trade Vanilla as my flavor and two small scoops were added on top. On top of that went a parade of hot fudge sauce, finished off with a coating of fresh whipped cream.

Warm Brownie, Fair Trader Vanilla Ice Cream, Fudge Sauce, Fresh Whipped Cream

Warm Brownie, Fair Trader Vanilla Ice Cream, Fudge Sauce, Fresh Whipped Cream

While I try to avoid gluten and dairy fat because of their difficult digestion, I can digest both. And today my longing for a sundae was beyond absurd, so Ben & Jerry’s it was!

Warm Brownie, Fair Trader Vanilla Ice Cream, Fudge Sauce, Fresh Whipped Cream

Warm Brownie, Fair Trader Vanilla Ice Cream, Fudge Sauce, Fresh Whipped Cream

And–again–while I don’t love the Ben & Jerry ice cream, I do love their company for their activism and awareness. By the end of 2010 they plan on using only cage-free eggs, and by 2012 have a completely fair trade ingredient list; the vanilla I had today was just the start of that movement. All their flavors already have all-natural ingredients. Even in their scoop shops, I was impressed with the quality of ingredients, certainly not the least of which being fresh whipped cream instead of something more convenient like Reddi Wip.

All Gone

All Gone

While it’s obviously important to eat well and exercise a moderate amount, it’s equally important to treat yourself. And there are other ways to “feel good” about what you eat besides it being healthy. For some, that’s having the 80-20 mindset, and for others that’s veganism; for me, it’s a natural and ethical ingredient list. Have you treated yourself lately? I hope so, or living would get tough! What mindset makes you “feel good”? Of course, at some point we all have to get back on the wagon…

Roasted Broccoli And Sweet Potato, Maple Baked Tofu, Soy Sauce

Roasted Broccoli And Sweet Potato, Maple Baked Tofu, Soy Sauce

Besides the fact that I’m horribly monotonous, this was incredibly tasty. I still had a little maple tofu from Easter to eat up, so I roasted broccoli, sweet potato, and a little extra tofu; I think I made too much tofu in the end, because that dominated the bowl. Oh well, it’s my favorite ingredient, especially when it’s slightly soft and mushy on the inside 😀

As if the monotony couldn’t get worse, I realized 1 week ago today I had the same dinner, and my afternoon snack was 1/2 a vegan cupcake with ice cream, haha. With any luck, that’d mean I’m eating at Grezzo’s tomorrow and Easter’s on Sunday again; wouldn’t that be nice.

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The Foods I Crave

Posted on April 8, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’m a big fan of “eat what you crave”. I truly think cravings can be a way for your body to tell you something that you need. I also tend to crave really yummy things and might just use that as an excuse to eat them more often. Take your pick.

Grass-Fed Burger, Maple Tofu, Spinach With Sassy Hemp Oil Dressing

Grass-Fed Burger, Maple Tofu, Spinach With Sassy Hemp Oil Dressing

Today for lunch I craved a juicy piece of red meat. I do think I crave meat when my body wants proteins or specific vitamins at times but I would never assert that you need to eat meat or even dairy to get those. I think you can be completely adequately fueled and nourished whatever your diet may be so long as you pay a little more closer attention to what you might be missing. On the side I had some maple tofu, not really because I was craving it but it was Easter leftovers. I have craved tofu at times before; that’s always a fun and unexpected craving 😀

Cashew Almond Pranabar

Cashew Almond Pranabar

I think my lunch needed more veggies because it wasn’t very filling :-/ Happily, I broke in to the cashew almond Pranabar I packed. Even if it wasn’t what I was craving, this was good!  I never would have guessed from the packaging it would be so chunky and nutty. I love that it’s mostly raw with living enzymes; and the nuts are chunky and delicious 🙂 I definitely can’t wait to try more Pranabar flavors; I might even start to crave them.

Strawberry Chobani

Strawberry Chobani

What I was craving was a strawberry Chobani. My friend, Alex, ate one in our 1pm class and for the next 3 hours I couldn’t get my mind of the smell of sweet strawberries and the Summer air *swoon*. This did not disappoint, but it was a little too tiny to really fill me up before dinner.

Dining-Hall Apple

Dining-Hall Apple

If I ever do crave an apple, it’s a nice, fresh, crisp red delicious, and not this slightly bruised one that I had at hand. That being said, I go with what’s free and convenient. Did you know vegans can get all their Vitamin B12–something normally found in animal proteins–through the decay and bacteria on fruits and vegetables? I guess this was insurance if this burger didn’t have enough :-/…

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Glazed Nuts And Syrup

Chickpea And Cheddar Salad With Maple Syrup And Maple Glazed Nuts

And I absolutely crave chickpeas; I could eat them for every meal, and I know I’m not the only one. They’re like little nuggets of vegan joy. Besides those, I don’t normally crave cheese but I do enjoy it(and love the bloggers who do crave it) and Next Generation Dairy makes a fine raw cheddar cheese. I topped off the salad with some Tierra Farm‘s maple glazed nuts and sea salt. Fun fact: I’m convinced if I ever start craving canned tuna, it means my sodium level is low. I’m also sipping a root beer Zevia with dinner, for anyone who cares; it’s my first stevia sweetened beverage of the day and after no coffee or tea I was craving something other than water.

What are you craving right now? Personally, I could go for some coconut milk hearing  Heather talk about it so much lately. And I haven’t had my healthy ounce of dark chocolate yet today. Hmm… decisions, decisions. If you crave Greek yogurt, you’re in luck with this Oikos giveaway!

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