Show The People What They Want

Posted on January 28, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For the past two days, my most viewed page(besides the Home page) hasn’t been my In Defence Of Saturated Fats, my rant on Nutella, or even My Superfoods. Nope. I’m not even sure you’re reading this; the way things have been, you might just be looking at my Chocolate Avocado Pudding recipe. Is anybody out there? Helloooo. Aww, hell. I’ll just give you what you want to see.

Probiotic Chocolate Avocado Pudding

There? Happy? Because I definitely was eating this. I think the fact that I can make this in my dorm room goes to show just how easy it is. For some reason, though, I could not get this to be sweet enough. I practically saturated it with stevia; I think my sweet tooth is officially retiring and moved to Boca Riton. He’s lived a rough life. He had to listen to some God awful auditioners on American Idol like there were last night. He didn’t have to eat half the things Bear Grylls did on Man Vs. Wild, which I watched while the president spoke. Did anybody know that Bear is a vegetarian? Well, when he’s not eating a fish eyeball for water, that is. But apparently so–go figure.

I wanted to be able to show guys oats in a jar…

Agave Sweetened Smart Balance Peanut Butter

But something tells me this one was just a bit too full. Just a bit. Maybe? You’re going to have to settler for in a bowl:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With SB PB And Nutritional Yeast

Yum! I don’t think I could ever get over this combination; the pumpkin, nutritional yeast, and sea salt make for a sort of sharp cheddar–it’s divine. Why did I never know about this stuff before learning more about veganism? Nutritional yeast is something that should be in every household, meat-eaters or not. It’s so versatile! Speaking of veganism, I realized after yesterday that I “accidentally” ate vegan all day except for a milk chocolate peanut butter cup with breakfast; how random is that?

This morning, I set my alarm for 6:15. Besides the fact that the volume was WAY too loud, I just kind of stood there wondering “why?”. Well, I knew why: I wanted to run before class, but this year it’s going to be a little more difficult. I considered going back to bed and trying to squeeze a run in sometime later(even though this isn’t really practical either), but in the end I just went with my first thought and hit the gym.

Treadmill Stats

Once again: This was hard! How was I running like I was before break? I didn’t realize walking stairs and running would be so different but apparently so. I probably need to figure out how to cut it back/do cross training to “fill time” I would otherwise be running, but I just don’t know; this half-marathon is feeling a lot harder now :-/ I didn’t have much time to shower/make breakfast/prepare for class, but I squeezed it all in.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pistachio Butter, Pomegranate Chobani With Dark Chocolate Chips

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pistachio Butter

All nice and portable to-go. I bought a pomegranate Chobani yesterday knowing I’d need somethign I could grab. The pistachio butter made with Tierra Farm‘s pistachios goes so well with pumpkin: It’s orange, green, salty, smooth, delicious, and–best of all–alliterated! I tried thinking bout how the dark chocolate chips would fit in a p, but no luck. Oh well. They perfectly hit the spot.  I ate most of this in my 9am Greek class. It looks like a non-intimidating work-load. And the grad student teaching it is very nice. He has a severe stutter and talks a little(OK, a lot) like Steven Hawkins to eliminate it but he seems like the nicest and most supportive teacher anyone could hope for. When I got back to my dorm, I brewed something up to get typing.

Decaf Hazelnut Coffee

Now that I’m lowering the meal plan, it makes much more economical sense just to brew my own coffee. Cheaper, fresher, tastier–works for me 🙂 Two more classes for today! I don’t expect it to add up to much “excitement”. Anything fun on your end? Tune in to Oprah at 4 to see Jay speak on NBC!

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I Wanna Be “That Guy”

Posted on January 21, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’ve decided that I want to be “that guy”. Not “that guy on the bus”,

Or “that guy who got screwed by NBC”,

I want to be “that guy” who, when he’s 80 and grey, his grand kids can recite all the rituals he did every day. I want to be “that guy” whose routine you can set a clock to. Basically, I want to be boring. But I don’t see it as boring. Other people see it as boring and tell me I should want to switch it up and try new things. Great. Fine. But here I am knowing what I want to do; and last I checked, when somebody knows what they really want, that’s something to celebrate, right? So rather than fight my routine, I’ve decided to start embracing it. For instance,

The Raw Bakery Cacao Brownie

The Raw Bakery Cacao Brownie

I want to be “that guy” who has something chocolate every night after dinner. That seems to be the theme, as of late. I’ve had raw things after dinner. I’ve had yogurt after dinner. But, in the end, they’re all chocolate. Does anyone want to argue with me that that’s a bad thing? Didn’t think so. Last night’s treat was a raw cacao brownie from The Raw Bakery. I definitely didn’t need something composed of dates and agave right before bed but c’est la vie. This was OK, but it tasted oddly figgy and not chocolate enough. It had a great texture–better than most cooked brownies I’ve ever had. I’d definitely have it again, but, in all honesty, I could probably make a recipe for these or find a better brand.

I want to be “that guy” who has his shows and is always up to date on them. How could I ever show my face at the water cooler if I didn’t know how hilarious Modern Family was last night(seriously, wasn’t that good?).

Oatmeal With Organic Chocolate Peanut Butter

I want to be “that guy” who has oatmeal with nut butter every night before going to bed. I’ve fought this one before and it’s just not worth it; I love it, it’s good for me, and I’m going to do it. Last night, I even got to try a brand new nut butter: Justin’s chocolate peanut butter. I bought this with my Christmas money, skeptical of how it’d be since I haven’t had a chocolate peanut butter I like before. My verdict? YUM-O! This is seriously one of the best peanut butters I’ve ever had, and the first chocolate peanut butter one I’ve liked. You can taste both flavors, and they aren’t mixed into one; it’s simply perfect. I can’t wait until these are in every Whole Foods, at which time PLEASE get yourself a jar. And it’s organic–my heart be still.

I want to be “that guy” who sleeps 11-7, so long as he can help it. Sure, once and a while I’ll be up later than that, or have to hit the snooze button. But I’m not letting anyone convince me that I shouldn’t be asleep that early at my age. It’s just how I am.

I want to be “that guy” who gets up and exercises! To be honest, I’ve fought myself on this one. I mean, really, who’s thinking anything difficult is “fun” 10 minutes after waking up? But you know what? After I do it, I feel energized and ready to tackle the day, and sooo much better than when I don’t or put it off. Sometimes, we may need to tell ourselves what we want, but that’s just how it is. This morning, I told myself I wanted to do  full core and 200 flights, and that’s what I did. And I felt so good afterwards.

Justin's Chocolate Peanut Butter And Suzanne's Ricemellow Creme

I want to be “that guy” who sets the record straight. For months now, I’ve been calling the all-natural Fluff I’ve been using vegan. Well, a little while back I double checked the ingredients and saw egg whites top the list. Oops. Turns out it wasn’t vegan, just all-natural. Because it wasn’t breaking news, I didn’t think to make a point of it. Recently, Suzanne’s sent me some of their goodies to review. And their ricemellow creme is vegan. There. Record straight.

4 Parts 0% Greek Yogurt : 1 Part Full Fat Greek Yogurt

Bananamon Oats With Justin's Chocolate Peanut Butter, Suzanne's Ricemellow Creme And NOO's Cinnamon Grahams

I want to be “that guy” who has yogurt and oatmeal at breakfast everyday. Predictable? Definitely. But what’s wrong with that when you’re getting protein, fiber, probiotics, whole grains, and healthy fats? Nothing. And occasionally things do change, like trying out my new vegan ricemellow creme. Honestly–I loved it. Fluff who? This was an identical match. It was airy and gooey and sweet. I only wish it had improved on the vanilla flavor of Fluff rather than match it. Definitely not a disappointment by any means, though.

I want to be “that guy” who watches gets his news from Regis & Kelly and The Today show every morning. It’s pretty much how I stay on top of things. I think it’s a lot more reliable than The Jay Leno Show these days, don’t you?

I want to be “that guy” who tries new things from time to time, too. On today’s plate(literally): seitan. I had had seitan jerky but never seitan as a main part of a dish. I bought pre-prepared seitan and just heated it up.

Prepared Seitan, Smoky Soy Brussels Sprouts, Honey Barbeque Baked Potato Chips

Smoky Soy Brussels Sprouts

I want to be “that guy” who brings you fun flavor ideas, like wheat-free tamari and liquid smoke brussels sprouts. Seriously, every time I hear a commenter say that putting certain flavors together was a great idea or that they tried it and loved it, it warms my heart. Really, I don’t think too much about things. I just throw them together if they sound good, and thankfully these came out amazing with the honey barbeque chips and seitan. But also sometimes they don’t work out; that’s one of the benefits of having a dog 😉

I want to be “that guy” who’s a hoot to watch shop, moving slowly and picking up and feeling every product. Yes. I shop like an Italian grandmother, which was ironic today because it was my Italian grandmother who drove me to the natural food store down the road. But I totally encourage shopping like this, because how else would you know if a fruit is ripe? Or nut properly roasted?

NuNaturals Pure White Stevia Extract 1oz

I want to be “that guy” who people trust for good recommendations. I’m kind of hoping to be that already, and I’m hoping you’ll trust me when I say this is the best stevia I’ve had to date. I was sent this along with other NuNatural products over the Summer to sample and review. I’ve boughten 2 or 3 of this particular product because it is truly the purest, least bitter stevia I’ve found. If you think it’s pricey($14 for 1 ounce), know that you get at least 200+ servings out of it so it’s not so outrageous.

Chocolate Banana Ice Cream

I want to be “that guy” who raises his family right but never deprives. I like to take cues from Mama Pea. She’s so popular, I’m sure I don’t need to plug her. But if you haven’t heard of her, you must check her blog out; she’s raising her two girls so well, giving them wholesome snacks that they truly enjoy(like chocolate banana ice cream), and if I raise kids half that well one day I’ll be happy.

I don’t want to be “that guy” who calls his dad in a whiny voice complaining how we have no dinner for tonight and our back-up restaurant randomly completely closed due to a private engagement(seriously, how often does this happen?), but I was that tonight. I’m just trying to keep us all fed, people.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Organic Pistachio Butter

I want to be “that guy” who has all the crazy cool nut and seed butters. Can I be that guy already, with this organic pistachio seed butter I ground with Tierra Farm‘s organic salted pistachio meat? There’s something kind of fun looking at a bowl of what should be oatmeal and peanut butter and seeing all orange and green–just saying.

I want to be “that guy” who wins this giveaway for Chobani, so don’t enter.

So there it is. That’s just the kind of guy I want to be, day in and day out. Why the word “want”? Who’s stopping me? That’s the guy I am.

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Yellow Yolks

Posted on January 20, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I don’t want to think what I’ll do without a food processor when I go back to campus. It’s sooo amazing. For instance, it can turn fruit into ice cream… twice in one day!

Banana Soft Serve With Milk Chocolate

I had a second bowl of banana soft serve. This time I omitted cocoa powder and added some xanthan gum because the bananas weren’t fully frozen to begin with–delicious. I topped it with the milk chocolate that Kristie gave me. Holy yum was this good! I didn’t check but I bet they use butterfat in the ingredients because this was soooo rich and creamy and delicious. I think it rivals Divine’s milk chocolate; would it be ironic that one of my new favorite milk chocolates was given to me by a vegan? Thanks, Kristie!

I also like the food processor because it makes seeds into seed butter, such as it did yesterday with my pistachios, which I couldn’t wait(literally) to dive into.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pistachio Butter

This bowl was saltier than the sea but it was sooo delicious, too. I forgot how much I liked pistachios; they’re just such a pain to deshell. I ended up watching Chopped, which is one Food Network show I don’t care for. Have you seen it? It’s just not my style. What I do like is trying to figure out what I’d make if I were one of the contestants. For instance, they had to make a dessert with tofu, cacao nibs, cherry tomatoes, and gingersnaps. If I were them, I would have made a gingersnap crust, filled it with chocolate tofu pudding, and garnished with whip cream, a candied cherry tomato, and cacao nibs. I don’ know how good that’d come out but it’d be worth a shot 🙂

When I woke up I was pumped for a strength and cardio session. I did my core of

  • 40 push-ups
  • 50 standing lunges, 50 walking lunges
  • 70 side crunches, both sides
  • 100 crunches
  • 70 crunch pose-hold
  • 240 arm rotaries
  • 5 sets of 7 chair swings
  • 40 squats
  • 70 standing marches
  • 70 rower arms
  • 40 second rower’s pose hold
  • 100 sit-ups
  • 70 tricep dips
  • 100 air bike kicks

Followed by the standard 200 flights. I knew my after-dinner snacks wouldn’t hold me over through all of that so all the while I was nibbling on this new bar I was sent to review:

Jay Robb Cashew Coconut Bar

As with all Jay Robb products, if it will make me look like that, I’ll eat it no matter what it tastes like. Thankfully, this cashew coconut bar was also delicious. It really tasted quite tropical with the coconut and sweet cashews. I couldn’t even notice the rice crisps, which I normally detest. And I love that it’s lightly sweetened with agave nectar and sugar alcohols; who wants a lot of sugar when they’re reaching for a protein bar? That’s what energy bars are for. This also has a good deal of NUTrition(cashew butter is the first ingredient), so for breakfast I went for some other fats.

So Delicious Soy Yogurt With Vanilla Bean Sugar

Oatmeal With 2 Cage-Free Organic Eggs

I had(what I thought) was a lightbulb moment: I separated the whites and yolks, cooked the oatmeal with the whites for 1 minute and then added the yolks fr the last 30 seconds. They came out so perfectly runny while the whites were completely set. That’s how I’ll be making eggy oats from now on. For the yogurt, I just took a plain So Delicious and added vanilla bean sugar from Whole Foods bulk bin; don’t you love looking at something and seeing vanilla beans? I definitely eat vanilla with my eyes first.

Today’s Tip: Eggs It seems like there’s a million different things to think about with eggs(then again, I overthink everything) and I was wondering: Where do you stand? Love it all? Just the whites, please? Or no eggs for you? For me, they’re a package deal. I think they’re a perfect protein balanced with fat when you eat the whole egg. And so much of the vitamins and nutrients are in the yolk that they’re hard to pass up. Of course, there’s the cholesterol that comes in the yolk, too(a healthy egg should have a bright yellow/orange yolk). But after reading the literature on egg cholesterol and cholesterol in general, I’ve came to the decision that it doesn’t matter to me. I do, however, keep a carton of egg whites on hand, just for those times when I want a protein boost or need the structure they provide in baking. If you want your baked good to be cakey, add 2-3 eggs. If you’re looking for something airy, omit the yolks and whip the whites. Or, on the contrary, if you want something a bit beefier like milk chocolate peanut butter chunkies, use just the yolk. Ideally, I’ll own my own hen coop some day. That way I’d know where my eggs come from, how the hens are treated, and not have to pay for eggs ever again. Clearly, not much plans to move to the big city here. So what are your thoughts on eggs?

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