Good Call/Bad Call

Posted on January 2, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good Call: Suggesting that, while my mother and grandmother go to the Linkin Park Casino, my dad take me to the Dedham Whole Foods, which is the largest in New England.

Bad Call: Not checking the batteries on the car DVD player or taking the car adapter before leaving the house for the 50 minute drive to the casino followed by the 40 minutes to Whole Foods. There was no energy left in the machine, which made me holding my copy of Gettyburg look rather silly.

Peanut Butter And Chocolate Black Bean Brownie

Good Call: Grabbing a ziploc with 2 of these for snacks in case I got hungry. After 80 minutes in the car, I got hungry

Bad Call: Not taking a watch to time myself. I think we legitimately spent 90+ minutes in there. My mom and grandmother were probably happy with that, though, because they got to gamble more.

Full Wine And Beer Section

Good Call: Not bringing my mom and grandmom for this very reason. I’m guessing that this is where my dad was, too, for the time when he was “lost and looking for me”(It’s big but it’s not that big).

Good Call: Getting a coffee from a freshly brewed pot to “settle in”

“Meh” Call: The Whole Foods doesn’t really have that much different stuff than the other ones near me(once you get past the wine section, walk in cheese cellar, 4 rows of salad bar, and fresh butchery). That is, of course, except for the bulk bin section…

Vanilla Bean Sugar

Coarse Salish Smoked Alderwood Sea Salt

Whole Wheat Pastry Flour

Nutritional Yeast

Good Call: Hitting this up like it was nobody’s business. So many fun foodie finds! They really had a lot more I wouldn’t have minded trying but I controlled myself.

Good Call: Loading up on random proteins/vegetables/yogurts for the next 3 days of snow!

Cake Batter Gelato

Bad Call: This gelato(did I mention this Whole Foods has a gelatoria?). When is gelato ever bad? Well, it wasn’t; but it really wasn’t good either. It might as well have been vanilla.

Good Call: Giving the gelato to my dad and running back in for a good snack that’d last me the 90 minute drive home.

Voskos Honey Vanilla Bean Yogurt With Peanut Butter And Chocolate Brownie

Good Call: Going with a yogurt I’ve sampled and reviewed here and know I’d love and topping that with another brownie.

Bad Call: Mentally calculating that in 24 hours I ate 2 tablespoons cocoa, 2 tablespoons NuNatural baking blend, 1 1/2 tablespoons vegan butter, almost an egg, almost a serving of black beans, 1 1/4 serving of peanut butter chips, and an ounce of greek yogurt through these brownies(I was bored and it was a long drive).

Good Call: Demanding that we stop in Bellingham for an emergency bathroom break unless we had an empty bottle to do it Dumb & Dumber style.

Oh Nuts! Sweetened Dried Cranberries

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Nuttzo And Craisins

Good Call: Making about the quickest and sweetest thing I could think of for dinner because I was starving by the time we got home. Naturally, that involved oats, which made sense because this was more like dessert time anyway. I thought I’d try these craisins from Oh Nuts! While I wanted something sweet and red; I wasn’t much a fan because they definitely weren’t tart but also didn’t have much flavor. Oh well, I think I just needed some form of sugar.

"Fun" Groceries

Good Call: Being a “grown-up” and paying for my own “fun” groceries, which included vanilla sugar, nutritional yeast, fancy salt, grain sweetened dark chocolate chips, and organic Bac’uns

Bad Call: Staying up till midnight the night before and dragging all night long. Why did I do that? Oh yeah, New Years.

Dark Chocolate Grain Sweetened Chocolate Chips

Good Call: These little buggers as a snack. They aren’t the same as Sunspire brand I don’t think, because I’ve had those and they taste more like unsweetened milk chocolate whereas these are more like bitter dark chocolate.

Brussels Sprouts And Broccoli With Smoked Salt And Nutritional Yeast

Bad Call: Not eating much veggies all day. That wouldn’t be bad if I didn’t like vegetables, but I love them(especially green ones). So right before bed I heated up these leftovers and had them with yeast and my new salt. The yeast was OK; it didn’t really remind me of cheese except in mass quantities, but it had amazing nutrition to it.

Bad Call: Trying to go to bed before 11. My body just does not work that way. I’m too much a creature of habit.

Oatmeal With Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Peanut Butter And Coffee

Good Call: Deciding to get back on the fitness horse after a few too many days of not. I made a pre-workout snack(which looks alarmingly like a breakfast but wasn’t) to make sure I’d be set for a good, long work out. The better thing about getting in a workout mindset is that the body starts getting into “regularity”.

“Oh my God” Call: Kind of how I felt after doing this

  • 50 standing lunges, 50 walking lunges
  • 70 tricep dips
  • 70 side crunches, both sides
  • 100 crunches
  • 50 second crunch hold
  • 40 push-ups(messy)
  • 100 air kicks
  • 100 sit-ups
  • 70 standing marches/chest flexes
  • 240 alternating arm rotations
  • 40 squates
  • 5 sets of 7 chair swings
  • 70 rowers arms
  • 40 second rower pose hold

Followed by 200 flights of stairs(a little more than an hour’s worth).

Good Call: Showering before breakfast, because I was sweaty as all hell.

Bad Call: Opening up the Strawberry Chobani that expired 10 days ago when I prefer plain anyway(stuck it back in the fridge; somebody will eat it).

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Gingerbread Peanut Butter And 1/2 A Ginger Molasses Cookie, 2% Yogurt With Banana Pineapple Rum Jam

Good Call: Thinking no bowl of oatmeal is complete without peanut butter and cookies, and buying gourmet jams to use a little at a time with yogurt. Seriously, this all made my morning.

Bad Call: Taking so long to write up this post that I’m almost about to eat lunch and feeled semi-compelled to upload it though not planning to at all.

Bad Call: Worsening my chance of winning The Not So’s Vitatop Giveaway from Vitalicious by telling you about it.

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French Toast Morning

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

Today’s the last day to enter this giveaway!

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

Christmas Tree And Fireplace

Of course there was one big party pooper.

Montana

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

Double Chocolate Pillow Dough

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

White Double Chocolate Pillows

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

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookie

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

Oatmeal With Earth Balance And Advent Chocolate

Endangered Species Milk Chocolate With Peanut Butter

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

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

Oh Nuts! Almonds

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

French Toast Almonds

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

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

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

Smart Balance Peanut Butter

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

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

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

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Cookie Monster

Posted on December 6, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Cookied out? Impossible, but I sure know how to try. Last night I made a vegan version of my Carrot Cake Cookies for Ashley’s fundraiser.

Vegan Carrot Cake Cookies

How annoying is it when you can smell but not eat cookies? Because these smelled awesome. I was a bit unnerved when they didn’t puff up like usual but I figured this must be the result of using a flax egg instead of the real thing. They’re still moist and soft as ever so I’m happy with them and hope the bidder really likes them, too! Since fiber wasn’t filling me up, I decided why bother? And just went for some cookies.

Trader Joe Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Fudge Dunkers, Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride Tea

At first I was a tad disappointed with these cookies(except for the white chocolate fudge coating, which couldn’t possibly disappoint). Then I tried dunking it and it was perfect. So soft and most–delicious. Now if only I had Trader Joe’s secret recipe… Afterwards I made some cookies for the house. I tried using an anise cookie recipe from last year substituting 1/4 cup milk with 1/4 cup beet juice for coloration.

Italian Anise Cookies

Well the coloration was a big success; would you ever look at these and think they’re all natural between the pinkness and nonpareils? Unfortunately, we all agreed the flavor was off. Either there wasn’t enough sugar, or something was wrong with the alcohol or baking powder. I’ll have to try these again because they were much better last year. After all this cookie madness, I was happy to sit down to some real food(that I didn’t have to cook/bake).

Cod With Soyaki Sauce, Asparagus, Acorn Squash With Red Thai Curry Sauce

Those Trader Joe sauces really can go with anything Over dinner, I was thinking how small our asparagus spears are and how they must be out of season and not so good. Then my mom mentioned how she picks out the tiny ones because she likes how they cook more. Really? I think they feel so much punier. Any asparagus-driven opinions out there? While we were eating, the storm outside took shape.

Snow

Finally! We had a dusting a few weeks ago but this was the majority of snow we’ve gotten this year; it’s been terribly unseasonal for New England and I’m happy that winter is starting to show. I had a sampling of desserts to enjoy the snow and tivo.

Italian Anise Cookie, Advent Calender Chocolate, Orange Milk Chocolate Slice

This is when we decided the cookies were off. Thankfully chocolate makes anything bearable, right? Chocolate oranges are definitely one of my favorite fruit; can I buy a chocolate orange tree? Do they make it in juice for? These questions need to be asked. Afterwards I got back in the kitchen if you can believe it.

Oh Nuts! Raw Cashews

Oh Nuts! sent some delicious, raw, natural products of theirs my way. The first I opened were these cashews and the first thing I noticed was how HUGE they are! Thanks, Oh Nuts! There’s no lack of nuts with you guys 😉 I decided to try a recipe online to make my own maple roasted cashews. First I roasted them for 15 minutes, then coated them with 1/4cup maple syrup, a touch of sea salt, and 1 tablespoon Organic Smart Balance Vegan Butter, and toasted them for another 12 minutes.

Maple Roasted Cashews

I don’t think anything smells more wintery than roasted nuts 🙂 These were so simple and yet the ones at Whole Foods at the bulk bins cost twice as much. Really? This is definitely a DIY project. These deserved a bowl of oats.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple And Maple Roasted Cashews

The cashews were awesome, but I think they need a sprinkling of turbinado sugar right when they come out of the oven next time to enhance the sweetness just a tad. Clearly, I’m a maple freak 🙂

I woke up at 7:30 this morning; I really think having an 8-hour sleep session no more and no less, is just the right balance for energy and hope I can keep it up. It looked amazing out in my backyard:

More Snow

More Snow

And now I’m expecting it to always look like this when I’m home. Got that, mother nature? I decided after blogreading I wanted to give Mama Pea’s cinnamon rolls a try. Yeast is always fun to play with.

Warm Yeast

But soon enough it looked like this:

Dough In Trash

Dough In Trash

This recipe was just not working out for me. 2 cups of flour? I think I was on my 3rd by the time I gave up, with dough stuck all over my hands. Oh well, I’ll just have to look for another cinnamon roll recipe that works for me. Meanwhile, I remembered we had bakery vegan cinnamon raisin rolls in the freezer so my breakfast didn’t have to change much.

Vegan Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Organic Smart Balance And Brown Sugar, And Smart Balance Peanut Butter

Eggnog Greek Yogurt

I topped the roll 1/2 with vegan smart balance and brown sugar, and the other half with smart balance peanut butter because I thought it was “cute” how both were smart balance. Seriously, you would have thought I had been sipping the apple brandy(which for some reason is on the island in our kitchen) the way I was amused by that. I think that’s the first time I’ve topped one of those vegan rolls with something also vegan! The yogurt… was not vegan but equally delicious 🙂

So far I have stayed out of the kitchen and been working on my 15 page Epic Poetry essay since breakfast; this thing is turning into a piece of epic poetry itself and I’ll probably have to ask for an extension on it as I ignore my other 3 papers due the following week. I’ve also caught up on Days and SNL; who couldn’t have seen the Tiger Woods and White House Crashers being parodied? Hopefully more work will happen 🙂

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