Protein And Pie

Posted on November 22, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

First off, I’m ecstatic to say I’ve affiliated with Amazing Grass. Something about that grass really is amazing because it has me hooked(especially those bars!) and I’m definitely happy to endorse them. You can now click on the pretty photo to the right to check out and even order some of their products. Simple, right?

Well yesterday, as I predicted, I tore myself off the couch for a nice little run. First I grabbed a snack.

Apple

I decided to do a short little route around town. It’s weird to think once that was my long run and yesterday it was practically my rest run. It reminded me of what’s fun about small rural places, case in point a man wearing green overalls and a red plaid shirt on a riding lawn mower. Santa, much? Well I thought it was 5.4 miles but when I got home it was 5.3. I was a tad disappointed and ran a bit further(as in 1.3 miles “bit”). Overall it was a nice but hilly 6.6 mile run. There was an offer of lentils for lunch but I really had one thing on my mind.

Banana Oats With Smart Balance And Chocolate Chips

After runs I’m a carby carb carb kind of guy. For this bowl, I used a 3oz banana mashed till all the fiber was gone, cinnamon and vanilla stevia, then my standard oat mix with 20g oatbran, 20g steel cuts, and 2/3 water. It was so thick! I could hardly believe I didn’t put flax in there. It definitely hit the spot. After lunch we went out and tagged our Christmas tree!

Our Christmas Tree

What a better way to say “we’re Christian” than sticking a tree in our house, right? We used to have my grandfather cut a giant one from New Hampshire and haul it down. Then he started just giving us money to buy big ones. Then we went through a phase of buying “Charlie Brown trees”, and now we go with moderately sized ones and pocket the rest of the money. This is also good because the tree farm is right near our house(near as in, if it’s a nice day when we cut it down, we could walk it home).

After that we went to Whole Foods. Like you all, I thought my haul last Sunday was a bit big. Well did anybody but me notice I didn’t go back once during the week? I ran a little low on Nog and pumpkin towards the end, but I convinced myself I could make it till Friday. Needless to say, though, there was tons to replenish and new sales to discover. There was plenty of good sopping, but a BIG disappointment when they were out of Snickerdoodle soy ice cream 😦 I suppose that’s for the best because it wasn’t on sale nor did I have a coupon like for most of the other items. After that, I was hangry for something protein(!). I don’t know how, but I know that’s what I wanted. I broke out a mighty protein bar.

Amazing Grass Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Bar

I was kind of hoping this would at least make it from the store home. Apparently, that wasn’t meant to be. But it did the protein trick for the time. It was great walking around Price Chopper when we stopped there to see the NuVal stores Tina and Melissa mention. I think I’m pretty established on what I think is “good” food, but most of America seems to need a little guidance, and it’s good Nuval is there to help. When we got home I laid out my loot.

Groceries Part 1

Groceries Part 2

Again, it looks like a lot, and it was, but I went in with the mindset of buying for what I’ll need at home since I’ll be on vacation Tuesday through next Sunday. I got both tofu’s on sale for 2.25(that’s together, not apiece). All the sausages were on sale and something I’ve been craving. The yogurts and cookies were also a good deal, and I needed the milk and pumpkin for a recipe. this recipe, in fact.

Crustless Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup turbinado sugar
  • 3 tablespoons whole wheat flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups canned pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
Recipe: Crustless Pumpkin Pie

Ingredients

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a water bath in a large baking pan which will surround your pie tin half way up. In a bowl, combine sugar, flour, eggs, evaporated milk, and pumpkin. Mix well. Add the vanilla as well as the spices to taste. Once ready, pour into the pie tin, and bake for an hour, or until top looks firm but not burnt or cracking. Carefully remove and let sit until the water cools and is safe to handle.

Recipe: Crustless Pumpkin Pie

Crustless Pumpkin Pie

This is the pumpkin pie for us. I made it last Thanksgiving and it got rave reviews. I wanted to test out the recipe again to make sure I still have got it. I do. I used 1/2 turbinado sugar and 1/2 NuNaturals baking blend for some good fiber. Nobody noticed a thing 🙂 I love being sneaky with healthy ingredients. While this was still cooking I heated up a snack.

Morningstar Breakfast Patties

I’m not sure if it’s that I was still on a protein kick, or I wanted to try out this new product, or both. They were itsy bitsy, but wuite good and surprisingly filling. I loved the flavor; you’d never know it weren’t meat if not for the TVP texture. This held me over well until more protein for dinner.

Salmon With Soyaki, Asparagus, Beets

I think I’ve been salmoned-out over these last few months because I’ve lost all desire for it when I come home. But since there must be a meat on the plate according to other people here, I’ll oblige for some fish. I forget how fun beets are! They make everything red, but that’s kind of cool, no? After dinner I tried to work, but work can follow me to my dorm whereas Tivo is here and now. While my parents cut into the pie, I dug into this.

So Delicious Plain Soy Yogurt With Newman's Own Organic Milk Chocolate PB Cup

I’m such a yogurt freak. Maybe I should make my own that instead for Thanksgiving? For a while I thought this was vegan until I remembered I specifically buy the milk chocolate peanut butter cups because the others just aren’t like Reeses. I totally forgot to bring vanilla sugar home, which is weird because I always carry that around, but this was decent without out it. After officially posting the pumpkin pie recipe, some more snackage.

Sugarcookie Tea And Peanut Peanut Butter TLC Bar

Crustless Pumpkin Pie With White Chocolate Chips

7g of protein per bar–not shabby. They’re a bit dry and chewy but that’s what I was wanting at the moment. I think the stress of realizing the weekend’s almost over called for something chew and something soothing. Eventually I dug into the pie, too–with white chocolate, because that makes everything better. Yum! I forgot how good this pie is. And it’s good that it doesn’t have weird, creepy gelatin ingredients to keep it firm, but it still perfectly is. The eggs and the flour really do all the necessary binding.

Pumpkin Oats With Cinnamon Frosting And Mighty Maple

Eventually I tried having more of a meal instead of snacking. A couple readers noted that I’ve been making “frosting” for a while now but no longer say what it is. Well, it’s actually just 1-2oz greek yogurt with a flavor like jam, cinnamon, or maple, and sweetener to taste. Super simple and super delicious. It adds a creaminess to the roof of the oats, and because I salt them before cooking so much a great contrast.

I normally don’t remember my dreams, but last night’s were too weird to forget. one was about Patrick Swayzee. I don’t remember the message much past that, but it had me hungry for some maple almond butter weirdly.

Bread With Maple Almond Butter

While I ate this, at 3:33, I discovered 3’s Company on TV Land. Do you think somebody came up with that timing or it’s coincidence that they show 3’s Company at 3am? Another dream involved someone taking everything out of my dorm including my Beanie Babies and submerging them in the pool because they didn’t like me. I don’t keep beanie babies in my room, but let’s hope my nut butters are safe. This morning, I woke up, turned on the coffee, and slept for another hour. Oops. After realizing I’m overwrought with things to do the longer I stay in the warmer it will be for a long run, I decided to have breakfast first.

Oatmeal With An Egg And 3 Lightlife Breakfast Sausage Links

Protein mess, anyone? For oats with an egg, I cook them for 2 minutes without the egg, then crack it in, swirl it about, and cook it for another 90 seconds. These sausage links were great! I couldn’t tell from texture they weren’t meat, though the flavor didn’t have much of a spicy kick. It went well with a drizzle of maple syrup, though. Now I plan to finish breakfast, let it digest(though probably not really) and do a 10+ run. There are so many more decisions when you don’t go to the gym! Should I do the neighborhood 9 ties, or head out on the road? And should I listen to heart pumping songs, seasonal Christmas tunes, or a movie? Decisions, decisions.

Click here to win some tofu!

Nature’s Path giveaway! Yum! I love me some granola

And a Newman’s Own Organic giveaway! Let this be my lucky day.

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Positive Petes

Posted on November 14, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Some days it feels like all the Negative Nancies are out to get you. Those are the days when I like to think back and instead think of all the Positive Petes out there who make things better.

November 13th 002

Decaf Coffee With NuNatural Stevia

Thankfully, I had enough time to run to The Blue Room for some coffee before class. There I ran into my first Positive Pete of the day, Gabe. He’s a friend from Greek and Greek History and a freshman like me. For someone who had only done 1 of his 3 history essays, he was definitely a Positive Pete 🙂 Or maybe he just was over caffeinated. After that I ran off to Latin class, where I learned that “dry” has meant “sober” for many more millenia than I would have thought. There really was nothing in the dining hall worth picking up, so instead I made a simpler lunch with what I had.

November 13th 006

Macaroni And Cheese With Sweet Potato

Apparently, “I don’t know what to make” means “Gimme carbs”. This was great for something so simple. I would have loved something green in there, but I wasn’t about to use a meal credit for broccoli alone, so I was happy with what I had and packed some bars for class in case I needed something more.

I turned in 2 of my 3 Greek History essays. Hey, that’s not bad, right 😉 The other one I should have set for Monday. The Positive Pete of the class was my friend Alex(read: Alexandra but no one calls her that). Some people are just great to sit next to because they make the best doodles and pick up on all the points to make fun of the teacher; that’s Alex. I’ve actually known her since I was a freshman in high school but we didn’t really become friends until I was a junior and she became a freshman here at Brown.

After that was Epic, and then a waddle up and down Thayer street. Doesn’t a walk sound more exciting when you use a more fun verb? By the time I got to my dorm, it was 3:30, but you might think it was 2am because my roommate was asleep, the lights were off, and the clouds covered any sunlight. Great. How did our sleeping schedules become so off? I made some oats, avec flash because it might as well have been night.

November 13th 009

Banana Oats With Vanilla Almond Butter And Vanilla-Cinnamon Frosting

I’m having soooo much fun playing around with this “frosting” idea. This time, it involved copious amounts of vanilla powder, with a touch of cinnamon and NuNatural vanilla stevia. That with the vanilla nut butter from Naturally Nutty really enhanced the banana and oats. My only complaint was not being able to see this while I ate. Also difficult: reading The Aeneid by the light off my laptop. But that was ok because I was also blog reading and you definitely all count as Positive Petes 🙂 I wasn’t really hungry before dinner but my eats were a little low so I found some cookies for Cookie Friday.

November 13th 013

One Lucky Duck Gingerbread Cookies

Raw and vegan One Lucky Duck cookies to be exact. These were one of the samples they sent me. I was a little curious how a raw cookie would work but it worked just tastily! It reminded me of cashew butter with maple and ginger, but in a crisp cookie form. They didn’t have me rushing to the website to have more, because I’ve had plenty of cooked and non-vegan cookies I love, but for the raw eater in your life these would make a great treat. This was around 6 and at 6:30 I headed over to the dining hall.

November 13th 016

Vegetable Melange, The Heat Is On Tofu Salad

It was really slim picking at the dining hall. I made some tofu salad with the last of my tofu before I left because I saw there was nothing I wanted. Anyway, what I had was decent, and I got to catch up with Positive Pete Adam. Apparently, he’s basically sold himself to science, and was trapped in a dark room Thursday night from 8pm-2am and had his brain waves measured. Weird. He’s the kind of person who I would expect running experiments like these, not being the lab rat, but whatever floats his boat. Since that was rather light, I had no hesitation busting out my treat for Cookie Friday.

November 13th 003

The Vegan From The Cupcakerie

Can we just call it Cupcake Friday? That’s all I ever get. I went with The Vegan today–scrumptious. I swear the ones the woman didn’t give me had twice the frosting but I didn’t want to be “that customer” and point at the pile of frosting with some cupcake under it that I wanted. On TV was some movie where Adam Sandler was a football player married to Courtney Cox. I think it lost me at the point where Adam Sandler could be a football player and get Courtney Cox. Instead of trying to make sense of it, I made a snack.

November 13th 010

Strawberry Yogurt Mess With White Chocolate With Dried Strawberries

Chocolate bars are the gift that keep on giving when you eat them in yogurt messes! On the down side, I’m going to need to restock on a lot of fruit jams pretty soon. For the yogurt, I did a 3:1 ratio of plain Oikos to full fat yogurt, so that it had just the right creaminess. It felt so nice to kick back and watch an episode of Leno not thinking about what’s due the next day I haven’t done. More breads and spreads to celebrate.

November 13th 013

Carrot Ginger Muffin Top With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Blueberry Vitatop With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

I think a muffin top off an actual muffin tastes better, but I can’t complain about either 🙂 Did anybody else watch the ABC 20/20 on crazy cat ladies? Sometimes I feel overwhelmed caring for one pet; how do people keep over 100 cats? That’s absurd. This morning I slept a good 9 hours and woke up naturally. That always feels excellent. I think I tapped into my own Positive Pete when I called running off for the morning; I’ll admit I’m one of the worse ones at taking rest days but even I can see when I need one. Instead my morning has been warm and rainy.

November 13th 017

Coffee On A Rainy Morning

I’m thinking that today will be a rest day, and I’m already wondering how’d I get things done if I were running right now. Laundry is in the machine, I’m on my 2nd cup of coffee, and I’m getting geared up to make breakfast and right the 4th and last of my essays, all with a playlist of 51 Christmas songs playing in the background 🙂 I also got word that a Positive Pete from high school will be visiting campus today so hopefully we’ll arrange a meet up! Too bad normal people don’t enjoy meeting at Whole Foods to catch up because I am out almost everything(even oatbran, and I just got my 2lb bag last month…). Have a great Saturday!

Who’s your best Positive Pete?

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Determination And A Bit Of Math

Posted on October 16, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I don’t know what happened, but yesterday was not 24 hours. It was 8, maybe 10 tops, and I have the pictures(and not the productivity) to prove it. The day started off good enough in class. I realized for the first time just how many grad students and upperclassmen I have for classmates. If I don’t Ace all my classes, I at least will feel comforted that my curve is being screwed by people who already did the college thing. I went to the lunchroom for lunch and ended up throwing out most of the food I picked up. I felt bad, but I’m sure the cafeteria throws out wayyy more than what I did. Instead I had a delicious microwave made meal:

Trader Joe Multigrain Pilaf

Trader Joe Multigrain Pilaf

TJ Pilaf, Flamegrilled Garden Burger, Steak Sauce, Broccoli

TJ Pilaf, Flamegrilled Gardenburger, Steak Sauce, Broccoli

You don’t get this stuff from the dining hall. The Flamegrilled are my favorite Gardenburger, and they’re also vegan! I love simplicity of ingredients like that. The pilaf was very good; I’d had it before but don’t remember much more than liking it enough to buy it again. It had just the right amount of spice and salt, and a really fun play on texture. Tomatoes was the 2nd ingredient, which was odd because it didn’t seem like much there, but overall it was very tasty and filling, especially for something made in the microwave. 365 Steak Sauce just completes any dish–if you’ve tried it, you know what I mean.

Normally I’d have stayed in and watched Days and Rachael Ray. But the weather was not getting better with time here in New England, so I figured I might as well “get it over with”. As I started walking towards Whole Foods and F.Y.E., it started raining. This was entirely warranted:

Organic Decaf Coffee With NuNatural Stevia

Organic Decaf Coffee With NuNatural Stevia

Look, ma, no cardboard holder! Nothing was getting between me and my warmth… literally. I pretty much gulped this down over the mile walk in record time. I first stopped at F.Y.E. to buy myself a little treat, then to Whole Foods to buy a little more. Would you believe my Whole Foods doesn’t have any Vitaproducts? What’s with that? I needed bread–I had made that admittance to myself. I also got enamored by the fresh cut deli meat so I got 1/4 pound Honey Maple Turkey. Yum!

Shopping Loot

Shopping Loot

When I was walking back, it really started raining. Thank God I’m a talented power-walker along with runner. I stopped by the mail room where I had an argument with my mailbox; I can remember what the numbers are, I just can’t keep in mind what direction to turn the dial! So frustrating, and all I had waiting for me was a bank statement. I did however have a very special package I was thrilled to receive waiting for me at the window. It was the order I placed Sunday night!

Naturally Nutty Products

Naturally Nutty Products

My Naturally Nutty Seed Butters! Have you ordered yet? What are you waiting for? Well I definitely needed a good bowl of oats to help me warm up. But I needed a good melting peanut butter and, despite how good Naturally Nutty is, it just doesn’t melt like PB&Co.:

Pumpkin Oats With Mighty Maple And Butter Toffe Almonds

Pumpkin Oats With Mighty Maple And Butter Toffe Almonds

Soul-hitting? Yeah, that’s the word. I’m glad I’m not the only blogger with a serious addiction to this, see proof. Joint intervention? I hear those are cheaper. I caught up on Family Guy and SNL at this time. Loved Family Guy, but meh on the SNL. It just hasn’t been itself in ages. Around 6 I didn’t want to be ravenous at dinner so I snacked on this apple:

Mystery Apple

Mystery Apple

Calling all apple experts: This was delicious! Except I have no idea what it was. Is there such a thing as a Golden Delicious? Because that would certainly fit the bill for this one. It had a great sweetness at first but then mellowed out with a slight tartness, but not too much. One of you, I’m sure, will keen on this one I’m guessing. For dinner, my day all came together. My friend had to head back to Boston earlier so dinner with him was off; it was also raining cats and dogs so I was more than happy to stay inside and eat what I bought earlier:

Cherry Zevia, Honey Maple Turkey Sandwich With Cranberry Apple Butter And Cream Cheese

Cherry Zevia, Honey Maple Turkey Sandwich With Cranberry Apple Butter And Cream Cheese

Can you practically taste Thanksgiving already? The honey maple turkey had such a nice salty sweet flavor. And the Trader Joe’s Cranberry Apple Butter was just perfect and the cream cheese really mellowed it all out in the end. Ideally this would have had some vegetable on the plate, but the only one I had in my dorm was a sweet potato I didn’t feel like nuking and I certainly was not swimming to the dining hall to get carrots and broccoli. While I ate this I reunited with The Food Network. Did you know you can watch full episodes of certain shows like Good Eats? I found out exactly why yogurt is “good eats” and why I’ll probably never be making my own any time soon. If I did make my own, though, it would probably be out of goat milk:

Laloo's Strawberry Darling Goat's Milk Ice Cream

Laloo's Strawberry Darling Goat's Milk Ice Cream

Because it sure makes for one hell of an ice cream. When I went down to the communal freezer, I said a little prayer along the lines of, “Just let it be there, damnit, or someone’s going to pay”. Don’t I make great prayers? At 6.99 a pint, you have to be a bit protective. Thankfully it was there so I scooped some out and put the itty-bit that’s left back in the freezer. I ate this to the tune of Survivor. I would so rock that show if I were on the island. The only problem is I don’t think I could stomach half the things they eat, and my metabolism would probably be racing so I would need to eat a lot. That would be a disaster. How is it that Russell has fooled them all? I couldn’t imagine watching these episodes after having gone through all that and been voted off and not feel a little cheated. For Grey’s I needed to get my probiotic on. I didn’t quite want to eat my other Attune bar yet; I want to save it for a “life could be worse. There could be no such thing as chocolate” moment, so I went with good ol’ Stonyfield instead:

Carrot Cake Yogurt

Carrot Cake Yogurt

Stonyfield with a kick, that is. The muffin butt to my carrot ginger muffin had mysteriously been squished, so it made it all the better to grind up and add to this. It came out a little too yogurty because I used a lot, but ’twas still good with some NuNaturals vanilla stevia and cinnamon. Meanwhile I was having a ton of fun playing with this new feature to the MyPyramid website. It’s kind of fun, but kind of wrong, too, in my opinion. I don’t see why whole milk yogurt would have 65 “extra calories”(i.e. empty). Yes, it has fat solids, but its not like it has the same effect on the body as refined sugar. To each their own.

Carrot Ginger Muffin Top With SB PB, Toast With Cinnamon Vanilla Sunflower Butter

Carrot Ginger Muffin Top With SB PB, Toast With Cinnamon Vanilla Sunflower Butter

Can you tell I needed something to butter me up? The Cinnamon Vanilla Sunflower Butter is ah-mazing. It has a very similar flavor to the Pepita Sun Butter but isn’t quite as sweet, I’m guessing in part because of the extra cinnamon. I also watched Matt Lauer on Jay Leno and decided a Today Show Host is my new official dream job. Why? Well first of all who doesn’t love all of them. And Matt was talking about going to bed early and getting up and doing his job first thing in the a.m. How about perfect for me?

This morning was not normal, and I’m a creature of habit, so naturally I was a bit annoyed. I set my alarm 30 minutes early to do a longer run, and slept in for the first 15. Ididn’t get the best nights sleep, so my hunger was unusually raging when I woke up, so I grabbed this before going to the gym:

Chocolate Orange Nature's Path Optimum Energy Bar

Chocolate Orange Nature's Path Optimum Energy Bar

I’m not accustomed to eating before exercise, so this felt a little weird. But I didn’t want to just ignore hunger. Hopefully this isn’t an every day occurrence and sleep gets better or I’ll be putting on a Freshman 15 overnight(literally). After running about 3 1/2 miles, nature called and I had to make a pit stop. Thankfully, I recorded how far I’d run but not how long, and when I got back to the machine it had reset–oi. I kept going and after another 5 miles the same thing happened. This time I took note of distance and time, but I was still pretty annoyed as you can imagine. By the end, I had ran 10 miles, and after adding up all my distances/times/estimated times I ran it in what I think was 85:28. It almost doesn’t “feel” like a 10 mile run after all the interruptions and oddities. But I kept determined all the way through and that’s what matters.

When I got back there was another disappointment: My basil plant practically died overnight. I’m trying to water him all he’ll take but I’m guessing it’s just not a hospitable environment for him right now(hell, or me, I’m cold!).

Blueberry Banana Yogurt With Strawberry Marmalade, Chocolate Vitatop With Chocolate Sunflower Butter

Blueberry Banana Yogurt With Strawberry Marmalade, Chocolate Vitatop With Chocolate Sunflower Butter

I really felt like I needed a “cleansing” breakfast this morning to shake off the bad and absorb the good, and that’s exactly what this was. Fruit and yogurt always feel nice and healthy, so I whipped up 1/2 a banana and unfroze some blueberries, mixed with Stonyfield and topped with jam–yum! The vitatop with the new seed butter was deeeelicious. The Sunflower Butter is very thick like most of Naturally Nutty’s products so it was hard to spread, but had a great flavor. It reminded me of Nutella except it’s not laden with sugar; in fact, sugar is one of the last ingredients. I’m going to try and convert all my peanut butter reviews into the new format this weekend, and I’ll be sure to add the new ones in. Speaking of this weekend, I’ve no clue what I’ll be doing. There’s so much to do at the Boston Regatta and campus and, at the same time, so much not to do so that I can catch up on work. I’ll have to figure that out today.

I would really go nutz to try Nuttzo, aka, don’t enter this contest 😉

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Stick To The List

Posted on October 14, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning. First off, I was very excited when Krystal from The Special K Treatment asked me to do a guest post a little while ago and now it’s up! Be sure to check out her fun and funky blog.

Yesterday morning my shorter run and hungry, hungry, hippo breakfast had me done awfully early. Usually I’m rushing out the door at 10:52 to get to class, but I had plenty of time. So much time I managed to squeeze a trip to the library(yuck) and grab a cup of coffee(yum) and still made it in before the teacher. After class I was excited because it’s that special time when the Farmers’ Market magically appears on my front lawn. I went straight to the creamery station and they had it!

Kefir From Narragansett Creamery

Kefir From Narragansett Creamery

How exciting. I was a bit disappointed when they forgot it last week. Unfortunately, they didn’t have fun and funky flavors like maple raspberry, but I took a leap of faith at guessing their plain was just as good. At $2 a bottle, it’s a bit of a splurge, but how often do you find homemade kefir? For some reason, I was not hungry during my usual lunch hour, so I just packed my lunch in all to-go containers:

Kale And Linguica Soup, Carrots And Broccoli In Mustard, Pineapple Chobani With Pumpkin Flax Granola

Kale And Linguica Soup, Carrots And Broccoli In Mustard, Pineapple Chobani With Pumpkin Flax Granola

This seemed like a smart idea. But by the time I got to history, I felt weird with 3 containers and a binder on my desk, so I wolfed down the veggies and soup and my bottle of water. After realizing I had sufficiently bloated myself with more water than I need in a day, I had to stop and recompose(I’m not really kidding here; I didn’t have another sip of water until 6:30 with dinner!). Thankfully, that meant I wasn’t hungry at all for my yogurt and I could sit back and enjoy it. The Pumpkin Flax Granola was sitting in there for 2 hours by the time I ate it and it still had crunch–now that’s one hell of a granola. At the end of my Epic Poetry class, I made a list and headed straight to Whole Foods since my dorm was the opposite direction.

Shopping List

Shopping List

Half of the list has question marks, meaning I wanted them but knew I shouldn’t buy them, and the bottom says “You have a lot of food. Only buy what’s necessary/you need to eat the other food. No granola or bars.” I leave myself the best messages; but if I didn’t “remind” myself of that, I’d totally go nuts in the store. On the way I had to make a pit stop at Staples to send out a fax, and headed to F.Y.E. here they didn’t have the particular video game I wanted. Shame because it’s suppose to rain for 3 days and I don’t see myself leaving the dorm much. When I was in Whole Foods, I did a pretty good job of sticking to the list. The sales this week weren’t as appealing as usual, anyway. Although they did have those amazing cinnamon rolls by Zen Bakery that I didn’t stand near for long. I got back to my dorm at 4:20 with these:

Cream Cheese And Attune Bars

Cream Cheese And Attune Bars

I picked up some Attune bars with the coupons I was sent to review them, and 2 tubs of cream cheese. As you must realize, I go through cream cheese a lot 🙂 But wait, they are regularly 2.69 each, on sale for 2/$4, and there’s a coupon in the new Whole Deal for $1 off 2 Organic Valley products. All in all, I got both for $3 total, which made them cheaper than the non-organic store brand! My mom raised me well in that respect 🙂

Pumpkin Oats With Grain Sweetened Dark Chocolate Chips And SB PB

Pumpkin Oats With Grain Sweetened Dark Chocolate Chips And SB PB

I didn’t want something sweet, so this bowl was pretty perfect as an afternoon snack. The dark chocolate chips have a much more mellow flavor and the salt really gives your taste buds a kick. The fire alarm went off, but I didn’t budge at all. Is it just me, or do school fire alarm tests in Elementary School completely desensitize you to fire alarms later in life? Plus, Taylor Swift was on Oprah and she’s kind of my celebrity crush. I got plenty of work done. Oh wait, that’s a lie. That’s what I meant to do. Curse you, internet(jk, I love you and don’t ever leave me). Well I may not have gotten work done but I did get dinner.

Baked Sweet Potato, Garden Style Scrod, Veggetable Medley

Baked Sweet Potato, Garden Style Scrod, Vegetable Medley

Yikes. Sorry for the photo quality. In The Ratty I try to have my camera out as little as possible so as not to embarrass the non-foodies I eat with; those crazy people need to learn to love their food more 🙂 I was so happy to see fish on tonights menu(yes, that’s what’s under the tomato stuff). I scraped off the toping and whatever was underneath to just get a taste of the salty, salty scrod. I had to go into the vegetarian line to find the sweet potatoes, because apparently people in the meat line aren’t the same who want potatoes. And there was a vegetable medley I just couldn’t, but probably should’ve, said no to. How is it that some of those veggies come out cooked the right amount and the ones right next to it are mushy as a rotten banana? What a mystery. After my friend went to some lecture to not write his essay *tsk* *tsk* I went back to my dorm to write mine like a good student… and instead watched TV shows online. The internet is a slippery slope. For dessert course 1 I tried my new probiotic friend:

Attune Milk Chocolate Crisp

Attune Milk Chocolate Crisp

With coffee, of course, because that’s how chocolate is best. This was my first tasting of the Attune line, a Chocolate Crisp bar. Umm, yum! This has probiotics, fiber, and calcium? You had me at chocolate. I really liked this for its smooth flavor and you can see my full review by clicking on that link. Like I said, getting all my Product Reviews into that format is going to take a little bit of time. But I hope to get it done within a month because of how clean and efficient it is for myself and you all. That chocolate definitely got me into a mocha mood:

Cinnamon Raisin Toast With Mocha Peanut Butter, Milk Mocha Chocolate

Cinnamon Raisin Toast With Mocha Peanut Butter, Milk Mocha Chocolate

After this I have 4 slices of toast left. Is this really my dorm? What happened to when I had about 3 loaves? Also, it’s very tricky to stop at 1 of those Newman’s Own Organic chocolates. My best advice is break off a piece, toss the rest out your window, and run to a bomb shelter to avoid scarfing it all down, because it’s that crazy good. While I was translating, there was either a) a pep rally or b) a drunken frat party occurring outside. Really, they sound the same when you get right down to it. My roommate came back around this time and started “doing work” which really annoyed me. After finishing some work and ignoring the noise I think I made the best dessert ever:

Vegan Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

Vegan Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Bean Cream Cheese Frosting

My fellow Peanut Butter lover, Jenny, is having dessert as her “Best Of…” theme this week. How awesome is that? I needed to get in on the action. I took a Zen Bakery cinnamon roll and topped it with low fat cream cheese mixed with vanilla stevia, and topped with vanilla bean sugar. This was like The Odyssey: Epic(that’s funny if you’re me and going cuckoo reading that book ;-)). On a sadder note, my bready carb stash is diminishing rapidly. I’m going to need to get some reserves flown in and fast to survive the rest of the week.

I talked yesterday about the importance of shutting down your computer and lights a while before going to bed. Last night could not have been a better example; I had my computer off 45 minutes before I planned on sleeping, and my lights 35, and falling asleep couldn’t have been easier. Unfortunately, I had some weird dreams about secret agents and a killing maid and… well let’s just not go there. All in all it was much better than usual and I was ready to run when I woke up. It clearly was, like usual, a treadmill morning; it’s about mid 40’s here for the next half of the week! Ugh, let’s not think about that. I decided 8 miles at a challenging pace was a good workout and ended up doing it in 63:57. When I got back to my room I was a little dissapointed to find that I didn’t have the ingredients or time for the breakfast I thought about in my mind running, so I had to work on the fly:

2% Greek Yogurt With Cocoa Beach Granola And Caramel Sauce, Vanilla Chip Bar With Vanilla Peanut Butter

2% Greek Yogurt With Cocoa Beach Granola And Caramel Sauce, Vanilla Chip Bar With Vanilla Peanut Butter

Before you think I’ve gone completely berserk, there wasn’t actually any cream cheese in that container; I merely needed something portable to put the yogurt in. I love the Trader Joe’s 2% because it’s a little bit richer and holds up well. The caramel with chocolate granola was heavenly–definitely a dessert tip to keep in mind. And you know I’m running low on bread when I use a granola bar to put peanut butter on. I might have to break down and purchase some english muffins later so that doesn’t happen again. In fact, today I’m expecting my shipment of Naturally Nutty seed butters, so I definitely need something for some good spreading! Is it wrong to be so excited about getting butter in the mail? If so, I don’t want to be right.

Xagave anyone? Oh the things I could bake with that…

Plus a Favorite Things giveaway over at FoodCents

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Eating The Alternative

Posted on October 5, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Beside my daily grind, today I want to point out some of the foods I ate yesterday that are something of an alternative to the traditional. I hope you find something fun and funky to try; and I’d love to read comments about any alternatives you’d think I like because I love trying new foods(and all the better if they’re delicious :-))

So I’m kind of bad with rest days, case in point: I run on them. Write after I wrote and (thought I) posted, I got to thinking about a walk. And then I thought “why walk when you could run?” Well that did it for me. Plus there were some old streets I hadn’t been by in a while and I thought it’d be interesting to run around and see if anything’s changed. One thing I don’t like about running any other time than first thing is having food digesting, and feeling my body switch from running on simple carbs to stored energy. About 2 miles in I felt the switch and got a little dizzy for a minute, but thankfully that past and I continued on feeling like I do every morning. I saw a skunk as roadkill and about a mile later almost made a baby squirrel road kill, too; he darted right in front of me and it took a hop, a skip, and a jump to avoid him I ended up running 7.18 miles in 59 minutes. When I got back I showered and it was pretty much time for lunch.

Bison Steak Medallion, Sweet Potato, Brussel Sprouts

Bison Steak Medallion, Sweet Potato, Brussel Sprouts

Alternative first: Bison. Consider bison and yam the meat and potatoes of the new millenium, because they’re here to stay. Bison is a much leaner red meat than beef yet has the same robust flavor and is very very tender. My 6oz medallion had 180 calories, 1.5g saturated fat, and 38g protein. Amazing, isn’t it? It cut as well as butter and was perfectly fulling. If you’ve read this for a while, you’d know I don’t eat meat unless I think it’s quality, and this definitely was. Of course, it went great with the sweet potato, which is an alternative we all already know a lot about probably. I top mine with salt but cinnamon is a great alternative for something with a bit of a punch. What’s Sunday lunch without dessert, right?

Vitabrownie

Vitabrownie

Not really alternative, just delicious 🙂 I ate this in the car to my second Massachusett’s home, also known as Trader Joe’s. I stockpiled things for the dorm including bread, cheese, mac n’ cheese pouches, canned tuna, and peanut butter filled pretzels. If you haven’t had a TJ peanut butter filled pretzel, you have experienced life. We stopped at Whole Foods because it’s literally across the way(how cool is that?) where I got another one of my favorite alternatives for dinner. Not too much time was spent back at home; it was mostly pack the car, serve some ice cream, and go. Or was it?

Purely Decadent Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Purely Decadent Mocha Almond Fudge Coconut Milk Ice Cream

Alternative second: Coconut milk ice cream. I love all types of ice cream, frozen yogurt, soy yogurt, etc. And don’t get me started on the joy of goat milk ice cream! Coconut milk is just one of the many great alternatives. It is higher on fat, particularly saturated, but it’s all plant based so it has no cholesterol(and I think plant saturated fat doesn’t have the same negative effect on cholesterol as animal meat but someone might want to correct me here). That’s why coconut milk is great, but here’s why this ice cream is: I first had it after seeing Jenna gush about it. I love anything mocha and the fudge in this blends with the coffee so well. And the almonds are a perfect touch, especially since they’re roasted and salted to really bring out the flavor for a salty/sweet punch.

Getting back to college this time around was much better than the emotional disaster of last. My roommate was not in the room, so I invited my whole family to actually come in the room this time. Of course, we had to yell at grandma when she started picking up my roommates clothes on the floor, haha. My dad even scraped down the freezer that was all iced up so it hopefully will run better now. This time the goodbyes were much more normal and after they left I got a case of the munchies:

Peach, Toast With Cream Cheese And Pumpkin Butter

Peach, Toast With Cream Cheese And Pumpkin Butter

It’s been so long since I’ve had a good peach, too long. This one was a bit soft but it was not a disappointment at all. I’m missing the perfect peach season 😦 Summer, come back! Oh wait, we have pumpkins and apples to comfort us. Meh. I also had some T light whole wheat bread with cream cheese and TJ pumpkin butter. This sweet/savory combo works really well. And I like this bread for toast when I’m not looking for a real artisan bread because it has a light, wheaty flavor that toasts well and doesn’t impede on the spread. Gotta watch out though; 5g insoluble fiber per slice can get a little dangerous if you know what I mean. I met up with a friend for dinner but I already had what I wanted in mind so I brown bagged it:

Gardenburger With Light Cheddar Cheese And Tempeh Bacon, FSTG Potato & Chive Chips

Gardenburger With Light Cheddar Cheese And Tempeh Bacon, FSTG Potato & Chive Chips

Alternative third: Tempeh bacon. Try getting a bacon cheddar cheeseburger at any burger joint and I bet you won’t find this. The flame-grilled gardenburgers have a great flavor on their own, but with the smokiness of the tempeh bacon it was just out of this world. Obviously, tempeh bacon is a great vegetarian alternative. It has no cholesterol and has heart-healthy fats; and the Lightlife brand uses all natural flavorings to give it that bacon-essence. The potato and chive Food Should Taste Good chips totally top and greasy fries you’d find at a burger joint, too. There’s something so deliciously intriguing about them that makes it hard to stop eating them.

Last night I started off with The Amazing Race. I don’t really think it’s all that great of a show, especially not worthy of the crap load of Emmy’s it’s one. But I also have an addictive personality and aren’t too picky about reality shows so I’ll probably be watching the whole season. Usually each season has a pair of charming old people but I think this season’s missing that, which is so disappointing. Instead, I tihnk I’ll be rooting for the couple that came in 2nd last night and the gay brothers. I don’t really care for those shrewd poker players. One of my latest kicks lately has been the black and white cookies. I’ve never tried them, but after seeing them on blogs I got curious. I’m told I’m not missing anything special, so I don’t really feel like I’m missing out anymore, but that quest did inspire some kickassbutt oatmeal:

Black And White Cookie Dough Oatmeal

Black And White Cookie Dough Oatmeal

Ok, I can stop questing for the cookie now that I have this. I used P.B. Loco’s cookie dough peanut butter, which has vanilla bean extracts and chocolate morsels, and used 1/2 serving grain sweetened dark chocolate chips and 1/2 serving ghiradelli’s white chocolate chips. This was definitely a “dessert” oatmeal, and it was so perfect. It took me almost an hour to finish because I was also watching Family Guy and working on my essay(1/4 of the way there…). I thought Family Guy wasn’t as great as last week but still decent enough to keep up its reputation. Afterwards I made some homemade pumpkin pie yogurt with double alternatives:

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Turbinado Sugar Glaze

Pumpkin Pie Yogurt With Turbinado Sugar Glaze

4th and 5th Alternatives: Stevia and Turbinado sugar. There are a lot of ways to sweeten our favorite dishes; and when it comes to sweeteners, while none might be all that great for us, in moderation there are some better than others. Stevia is an all natural zero-calorie sweetener from the stevia. Normally, I’d be suspicious of things like that that seem too good to be true. But since I own my own stevia plant and can see what this comes from, it puts my mind to ease. NuNaturals has a great line of products, too. Another better option is turbinado sugar. This is the unrefined crystallized form of evaporated can juice. Because of the method employed, it’s more slowly absorbed into the body than other table sugars and retains more of the nutrients. Again, though, these are all sugars and need moderating. I topped off the night with some more of Holly’s amazing cookies and toast with peanut butter cookie spread and watched Brothers & Sisters. I fell behind last season but I’m trying to get back into it and feeling really bad for Kitty at the moment 😦

This morning I felt decent enough. I decided to keep it in the gym because there was one part of my important morning routine that wasn’t happening and I wanted to keep it close to a bathroom, if you catch my drift. My first machine was definitely broken, telling me I was running 7 mph but going wayy faster than that. I hopped over to another machine and tried readjusting. I’m not quite sure I trust all the stats but according to the machines I went 8 miles in 66:46. I’ve also been lucky enough to make a gym friend(i.e someone who you constantly run in at the gym and awkwardly acknowledge each other’s presence). She’s a rockin’ 60 or so year old who kicks her butt out of bed to walk for a few miles and even do a bit of jogging while watching the Today Show. Clearly she’s a woman after my own heart. Breakfast was a little bit of a nuissance; my kitchen scale has run out of batteries so I needed to measure everything with tablespoons and measuring cups. I really love using a scale for oatmeal and other grains because it gives me the perfect amount with the perfect amount of water every time. Nevertheless, I trudged on:

Peanut Butter Flax Oikos With Granola Bar Granola, Eggy Oatbran

Peanut Butter Flax Oikos With Granola Bar Granola, Eggy Oatbran

Alternative Last: Peanut Flour. A while back, when I came in 2nd at The Peanut Butter Boy‘s recipe contest, The National Peanut Board sent me some peanut flour to play around with. This very easily became a new food obsession with me. Peanut flour is the roasted, ground, defatted product of a peanut. It retains much of the flavor and essence but is in a dry form, much more easily mixed in to liquids and cold products such as Oikos. I recently ordered 2 more pounds of it from Byrd Mill to continue using. A 24g serving has a whopping 12 grams of protein and 3 grams of fiber and I typically will use 1/2 a serving in my yogurt. I’ve also added it to bread and cookie recipes to add nutrition. This breakfast was pretty decent; I think the oat bran came out a little dry because there wasn’t enough water, but hopefully I’ll get batteries for the scale later on today. For the granola topper I used Cascadian Farms Vanilla Chip, which is extremely delicious, but on its own will not fill you up at all.

Not much for the day ahead other than batteries and essay writing. I hope you enjoyed and learned something from all these alternatives. Again, please share anything you love that’s a little bit different so we can all learn and experience a little more.

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