Makes Me Want To Shout

Posted on March 14, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today has made me want to shout! Not like, “Hey, you kids. Get off my lawn!” kind of shout, but as in you make me want to shout, throw my hands up and shout, throw my hands up and shout. It’s been that good! It’s reminded me of how weekends should be: filled with friends, family, and fun, and not responsibilities.

1/2 A Munch Bar

After this morning, my parents and grandmother drove down to Providence. We quickly swung by the Brown gymnasium so I could shout at a high school friend who was visiting for a fencing tournament and say hi. After that we drove to Bellingham to pick some things up, and back to Providence for a late brunch. Since I knew we weren’t eating until 2:30, I broke off 1/2 a Munch bar to munch on.

Garden Grille Cafe

My dad and I liked Garden Grille Cafe so much Wednesday night, we thought it’d be great to bring my mom and grandmother. This time, of course, it was light out 🙂 Their brunch menu is full of good things. Everyone else seemed to want French toast but they were out of the batter 😦 That ended up being fine because no one had complaints with what we did get.

Grilled Sweet Potatoes With BBQ Sauce

For the table, we ordered a side of grilled sweet potatoes with BBQ sauce. Where else could you get a plate of sweet potatoes for $6? Love it. And so did everyone else! There were only about 3 wedges left after everything which we boxed up.

Homemade Tofu Bacon

When I saw “homemade tofu bacon” as a side, I knew we had to order some; I just wanted to shout it at the waitress. Since this was homemade from regular tofu and not made in a factory, it didn’t have to count for Lent as “prepared soy”. It wasn’t as crispy as regular bacon, but had good flavor. My grandmother even ate it and loved it! I don’t think, however, she realized this wasn’t made from real pig. She also loved her vegan blueberry pancakes, but was ready to shout when she didn’t get real heavy cream at first for her coffee(maybe that was a good thing).

Garden Tofu Scramble With Hash, Grilled Sweet Potato With BBQ Sauce, 2 Tofu Slices

For my plate, I ordered the garden tofu scramble “with grilled seasonal vegetables, served with home fries and toast”. I gave away the toast(not gluten-free) and also took a wedge of sweet potato and 2 strips of bacon.

Empty Plate

Obviously, I hated it and wanted to shout out my frustration 🙂 This was amazing and I need to go here more often(it’s only about 2.5 miles down the road–an easy run). It was all a little heavily oiled, but isn’t that how brunches are supposed to be? The hash was easily the best part; next time I come, I’m just going to order that as my main because anything else was just filler. Likewise, the sweet potato seemed a little bland compared to the hash with regular and sweet potatoes in it. Have I shouted enough about the hash?

Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

On the way out, I picked up one of their vegan chocolate chip hemp cookies. This was shouting my name, even though it wasn’t gluten-free. I just love over-sized and soft cookies 🙂 Everybody loved the restaurant; my grandmother who couldn’t even tell you what a vegan meal would look like wants to go back for dinner some time! Hehe, too bad it’s so far from home(but not from me :-)).

New Bowl

We went grocery shopping and wound up at Targe where I was able to get a new bowl! Isn’t this so radically different from my last one 😉 What can I say? I know what I like. This really is what reminded me of a good ol’ care-free weekend, because I was able to enjoy just riding around and going places without thinking “Oh shoot, I have to write that paper!” I still do have to write that paper; I just wasn’t thinking about it.

Whole Foods Groceries

All the groceries were more-or-less the standards: copious amount of yogurt and soy yogurt, some grass-fed beef(on sale this week!), tofu, chickpeas(why don’t I keep a few cans of this around more often?), and agave nectar(been going through this a bit too fast lately…).

Eastside Market Groceries

At Eastside Market, I grabbed 2 gingerade kombucha(still on sale, woohoo!), nutritional yeast, sweet potato, avocado, and pumpkin. Again–it’s not like I’m radically changing my diet this week.

Jokerz And Raw Caramel Chocolate

I did “treat” myself to 2 “fun purchases”: another Jokerz bar and a new raw chocolate. Normally, dropping $10 for so little chocolate would make me want to shout(I mean, I better be buying a cacao tree for that price). But since I won that prize for my Greek exam and then another $583 for tieing for 1st in the Latin exam(did I forget to mention this?), I thought a little self-indulgence was due. I can’t wait to see if they were worth it!

1/2 Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

1/2 Vegan Chocolate Chip Hemp Cookie

As if I needed any more self-indulgence, I broke in to my cookie. I cut half and ate it from my new bowl just because I could. This reeaaallly made me want to shout!  It was so soft and chewy–absolutely perfect for how I like my cookies. It wasn’t at all filling, probably not whole-grain, and sugary/butter as all hell; it was the perfect over-sized cookie 🙂 I like how the sweetness of the chocolate contrasted with slightly-savory hemp, too; I never would have thought to do that flavor combo. All that cookie adoration/putting away of groceries made dinner a real quickie:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Nutritional Yeast, And Sea Salt, Soy Yogurt With Hemp Seeds

I was going to make a burger with sweet potatoes, but since I had so much potato at lunch and didn’t get the ball going on cooking them, I just shouted out a c’est la vie and went with a breakfast-for-dinner motif. I love how savory this meal turned out; the nutritional yeast on pumpkin with saltiness tastes just like a vegan cheddar cheese, and the soy/hulled hemp seed combo was more savory, protein goodness. Not going to lie: I also love savory meals because they give me a sweet tooth for dessert 🙂 Until tomorrow!

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The Downside To Christmas

Posted on February 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

For Catholics, the time has come to pay up. Remember getting goodies from under the tree almost 2 full months ago? Yes, that last part depresses me, too. I feel like the Christmas season of family time, holidays from work, and gift giving are far enough back to be “gone” but way too far off to be considered “coming up”. Any, now we’ve came to “the downside of Christmas” otherwise known as lent. On the one hand, you have the feeling of I can eat cookies and cake and candies so long as they’re all shaped like a tree or an ornament. And now we’ve come to Lent where, not only should we work off those cookies and cakes, but we should give something up, too. Well that’s just a kick in the shins. I thought about it long and hard, and the answer became clear soon enough…

Just kidding! But really…

Preflavored soy! It took a lot of thinking to come to this one, but I feel really good about it all around. Even though one of my money-saving tips is always buying the “raw” material, I have to admit I go against that from time to time. Especially with soy, it’s so easy to pick up a log of “meat”, a veggie burger, or marinated tempeh. My fave fave favorites have been fakin’ bacon tempeh, Lightlife’s buffalo wings and soy sausage, and a whole tofurkey loaf at Thanksgiving! And on days that I have no time, these have been quite useful. But now I’m saying no to them for Lent. I’m a little wary that I might get home at 7pm one night and just start eating raw tempeh, but if that’s the case I’ll deal; and it’s only about a month, right? Anyway, on to the eats.

Vegan Sweet Cherry Coconut Cup Over Oikos

I hate to tease with these amazing coconut cups before I’ve put up a recipe page but… I will. Oh my God are they good. And they have a name! Vegan sweet cherry coconut cups. I’ll clue you in that the inside is a blend of cherry butter, unsweetened coconut, coconut oil, and agave nectar–yum! It was perfect with some yogurt for protein while flipping back and forth between Idol and the Olympics. Last night, I wasn’t a huge fan of either, though, honestly. Idol’s kind of at that boring stage where no one’s bad but no one’s great, and men’s figure skating just isn’t my sport to watch. A little bored, I made a not-so-boring bowl of oats.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple, Coconut, And Dried Blueberries

I was thinking for some reason this might look more “American” than it did: orange, white and blue. I guess I’m supporting Holland these Olympics? Haha, those uniforms are styling. Not styling were. Shredded coconut, even unsweetened, is definitely growing on me as a dry and fiberous fat. And Bob’s Red Mill‘s dried blueberries are sooo delicious! They reminded me of wild Maine blueberry pie. I stayed up long enough to see the Canadian skater and then hit the hay; I felt bad that he didn’t do “perfect”, but he still did well and especially for still being a teenager! And I thought I had pressure on me…

10 Miles In 88:14

This morning, I had 10 miles planned again–yikes! I woke up feeling good, but I just couldn’t tell how good. I got to the gym and started running. After a while I wanted to get off, more from boredom than anything else. For a long time, I debated stopping at 8 miles. And then I looked down and realized I had gone through 9 1/2. 1/2 a mile more? Yeah, I could do that. And it was faster than Monday’s pace! That’s the part that made me happy.

Green Chocolate Dreams Superfood Snacks

Green Chocolate Dream Superfood Snack

Back at the dorm and I felt like a mad man trying to refuel! First I took a superfast shower. It’s a good thing I was so quick because someone was waiting behind me. Then I started tearing at things trying to figure out what’s for breakfast. I’m very noisy making breakfast; it’s something that annoys even me. But I have oatmeal flying here and there and a microwave beeping at me and dealing with underbed storage–it’s kind of a mess. Needless to say, these raw balls from Superfood Snacks worked their way in there.

Breakfast

I think you’re supposed to fast on Ash Wednesday? Whoops. Well, I really needed to eatsomething a lot. And, yes, I’ve already eaten fake meat, but I’ll justify it in a bit. I was dying for chocolate avocado pudding since I didn’t have any yesterday. It tasted sooo good; absence really does make the heart grow fonder. The green chocolate dream balls were… “interesting”. I don’t mean that to sound like how your high school art teacher described your painting; after all, I did give them an 8/10 in my review. They just needed a touch of fat to taste richer. I am glad to have gotten so many green in at breakfast, though.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With White Chocolate Wonderful And Tempeh Bacon

This is not an Erkel “Did I do thaaat?” moment. I decided I was giving up prepared meat for lent last night at around 10:30pm, still havings 4 strips of tempeh bacon in the fridge. It is not the point of Lent, in my mind,  to be wasteful; I’m pretty sure even the opposite is true. So I used 2 strips at breakfast and will work in the other 2 at some point just to “use them up”. After that, any tempeh bacon I want I’ll have to cure myself–simple enough.

And so that is my kick-off to Lent. I still need to figure out how/when/if I’ll be able to get ashes today. And I have 3 1/2 straight hours of class now that history discussions are running. Whoopdie doo. Here’s a contest for some booty(of the pirate kind). Happy hump day!

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Bacon And Soy

Posted on February 16, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

33% of the work week: Done. That feels good. Now it’s just the other 66% to get through, and that last bit of Latin translation :-\ For the 2nd semester in a row, I chanced into the class which is translating one of the raunchiest texts possible. This semester it’s Petronius’ Satyricon. I’ll let you in on any of the gems of entertainment that come up in class; so far I’ve heard my professor say the word “grind” well more than I ever wanted to hear. Enough said!

Steamed Broccoli, The Heat Is On Tofu Salad, Scrambled Eggs

Lunch was a lot of protein, fats, and broccoli–a perfect makeup for a meal in my opinion. First, I simply scrambled 2 eggs. I can’t believe how long it’s been since I’ve enjoyed these on a regular basis; eating them reminds me of meals at my grandmother’s house. I’m determined to become “the perfect egg-cooker” even if I have to go through a few dozen–hens beware! I also used up the last of a block of tofu(about 1.5 servings) by simply shredding it with a fork and adding 1 tablespoon The Heat Is On pb & co. peanut butter; if you like pad thai, this could well be up your alley. And it’s so simple, you can make it in seconds!

Multi-Green Kombucha

On the side I had more greens, via Kombucha! The multi-green was the first flavor I tried for review for the company(the gingerades I’ve drunk have been with my own money). Again, wow! I 1/2 expected not to like this, but was pleasantly surprised that I did. The bitterness of the greens actually complimented the vinegar of the kombucha. And, yes! Kombucha should absolutely taste vinegary! I got a commenter that sounded concerned that hers did at first taste, but that’s actually the natural fermented flavor. And it’s completely understandable that for some people it wouldn’t be seen as “pleasant”, haha 😉 And if you thought a green, fermented beverage would be the oddest thing I’d eat…

Sir Francis Bacon's Bacon Peanut Brittle

…think again. I first heard about the Sir Francis Bacon company through The National Peanut Board. Really, how could I not be intrigued. I’ve actually made yogurt and oatmeal messes with peanut butter and tempeh bacon in the past, so the flavor combo wasn’t all too random for me. This was, though:

Agave Soy Yogurt With Bacon Peanut Brittle

That would be certified vegan soy yogurt topped with bacon peanut brittle. And you know what? Holy yum! The brittle had a great hickory smoked aroma to it, which made the bacon and peanuts only that much more appetizing. And it was choc-full of them, too! With the sweet soy yogurt, it all just “worked” even though it sounds like I’ve just made the founder of PETA roll over in his/her grave(or bed if they’re still alive). If you’re not a fan of savory peanuts, this probably won’t convert you. But if you are(or just a bit wacky in life), this should definitely be a something-to-try 🙂

Compared to that, my afternoon has been a) unexciting and b) busy. If it were one or the other, that might be nice. But nope. Both. Among heavy blogreading, I came across this map of interest. I live in a light green area; what about you? I would have thought Florida would be darker. I remember getting sooo many McFlurries on vacation there as a kid. Anyway, for dinner I had planned to have a burger. Something about the bacon in the peanut brittle–as much as I enjoyed it–turned me off meat for the night. If you’re an occassional meat eater, you probably know what I mean. That left dinner wide open.

Baked And Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Maple Baked Tofu With Sea Salt

Here comes the sun, doo do do doo. Of course, I went for instant comfort foods of mine: maple baked tofu and sweet potato fries. Well, sort of. The sweet potatoes under my bed grew mold over the weekend, so these were baked at the dining hall, and then I tried roasting them in EVOO for a bit to crisp up but they didn’t take. And because I was pressed on time figuratively, the tofu was never literally pressed, which would have helped them roast better and lose moisture while retaining maple-flavor. I just added a spike of maple syrup at the end and voila!

For some reason, I’ve been thinking it’s Thursday all day. Wishful thinking, right? That means no Survivor 😦 But there should be American Idol and The Olympics! Gotta look at the bright side(or the sun! ^)

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Eat As I Say, Not As I Eat

Posted on February 4, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Hi, Pies 🙂 (I’ve had such an urge to say that since Erin left the blogosphere :-/). Just a quickie(and early) one tonight. The moral of today(if you can find any “moral” on the internet): Don’t be a hypocrite. Now let me show you all the ways in which I’m a hypocrite saying that 😀

Lightlife Sausage With Cheese, Green Beans, Broccoli

Peanut Flour Greek Yogurt

What I say: I have a slight gluten intolerance.

What I do: Eat processed soy with concentrated wheat gluten.

What I say(now): Oops. It’s… erm… tasty?

Something here–maybe the gluten in the sausage–did not sit well with me during Greek History. It also might have been the yogurt; I’m not sure that much cream should meet that much salt. It might also just have been this was a complete protein bomb and that’s never good. Who’s to say? The lesson? Know yourself, and what you should do, and(hopefully) do it. I know certain things make my tummy funky, and that I do best with a plate comprised mostly of fat, low-cal vegetables, and a small amount of protein. I will try to do that.

Like I said, that made Greek History not so fun for me, and Latin not so fun for the people around me I’m sure(use your imagination). After that, though, I was free… from school at least. I love these 3-day work weeks. The first thing I did was run into my room and brew plenty of coffee. Decaf coffee works for me. So do I show restraint? Not at all.

The Wow Baking Company Cookie

Oprah this afternoon was all about diabetes, eating healthy, and working out. What did I do? I reached for an oversized chocolate chip cookie from the WOW Baking Company, knowing that I might not get a good run in until Monday(more on that in a bit).

The Wow Baking Company Chocolate Chip Cookie

I’m sorry, Oprah, but this cookie was amazing! Eat as Oprah says, not as I do. But, if you are going to have a cookie, why not a big, soft, gluten-free one? I got this as well as some others to review in the mail today and clearly it did not last long. But it was so delicious and unexpectedly soft, I truly truly loved it. And my stomach feels fine, too. Maybe that’s because it didn’t have gluten? More likely because chocolate chips and sugar have never been particular stomach-troublers. Totally worth every sugary, gluten-free calorie 😀

And what am I doing now? Why, waiting for my dad to come and then go to Chocolate Fest. Yes. Chocolate Fest. Real healthy right? It only happens once a year(unless you hit up each Whole Foods near you in which case it’s more like 5-6 times in 3 days), so you know I’m going. It’s either going to be really fun, or just a Whole Foods shopping trip(which is also fun). And then I’ll be home for the weekend to do some fun stuff around Boston. Did I mention there’ll be cooking/baking? Oh food processor, how I miss you! And now… Chocolate!

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My Quick-And-Dirty Dinner Exposed

Posted on February 3, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In addendum to my last post, I want to add that I have no shame in admitting I went through today knowing it’s been far too long since I’ve made the time to shave, though I think that’s more socially acceptable with a man’s face than anything else. That aside, lunch featured 2 Trader Joe products I’d never bought before.

Trader Joe's Sesame Oil And Tempeh

Even though I’ve had plenty of tempeh, I’ve never had Trader Joe’s. Unfortunately, I might not again after this one, either. Even though it’s so perfectly priced, it’s made with gluten forming grains 😦 My intolerance is so slight, I could eat a ton of bread and still feel fine; but then again, why not weed it out where it’s not necessary? I heated the sesame oil in a pan, and quickly cooked some tofu and tempeh. Towards the end, I added soy sauce and broccoli. It smelled just like teppanyaki!

Stir Fried Tofu, Tempeh, And Broccoli

For a final touch, I added a little cold sesame oil once it was out of the pan

Tip: Not sure how much oil to add at the end for a little flavor? Don’t pour haphazardly; use the cap of the bottle as a measuring device.

I packed this in a to-go container and met my friend, Adam, for lunch to reconnect after the long Winter break. The gist of it: Nothings really changed 🙂 We decided that, since I’m almost off the meal plan entirely, it’s easier to meet for lunches occasionally rather than at night. I think this semester is taking shape wonderfully.

After lunch I went back to my room, squeezed in some work, and then went to my 2 1/2 hour class. The entire first half of it was devoted to a librarian talking about how to use the internet for resources. That was about as exciting as it sounds like it was. I find it ironic whenever somebody in their fifties is telling my generation what to do with a computer. I was sooo happy for break, at which point I whipped out my snacks.

Pomegranate Chobani, Paradise Walnut Pistachio Bora Bora Bar

Like I Tweeted, I really didn’t want a “bar” exactly. Instead, I brought a yogurt and a Bora Bora bar which I won from Avery.

I suppose it was still a “bar”, but it felt a lot more like a trail mix with nuts and fruit being the first 3 ingredients and fat being half the calories.

Pomegranate Chobani, Paradise Walnut Pistachio Bora Bora Bar

I ate half like granola and half on its own. Either way, this was absolutely delicious! It really did taste nutty, spicy, and fruity, and not at all like a grainy “bar”, which I just could not have gotten through at this point. I wonder if they sell these at Whole Foods? To be honest, I’ve never looked.

Random Chandelier

I also never looked for a chandelier in a classroom, but this was right there in the classroom across the hall from mine. What exactly could they need that for? It’s in a tiny room with a front board and a lot of chairs. And is 110% out of place. On the other hand, I could see this being my “escape lounge” if I ever need to take my laptop and go somewhere quiet. When I got back into my room, I was beat. First things first:

Naturally Nutty Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

I think the 2 minutes after walking in the door after a long day, when everything you have yet to do(such as taking off your coat) start running through your mind, is the worst 2 minutes ever. After that, though, I brewed some coffee and got to work–Not nearly as much as I would like but c’est la vie. For dinner, I just did not feel like much, so I went for my “quick-and-dirty” meal.

Lightlife Soy Sausage With Cooked Onions And Organic American Cheese, Green Beans

Flavored soy products are my blessing! I could probably eat this meal 10 times and not have it get old. I mixed 3 servings Lightlife gimme lean sausage with 2 squares Trader Joe’s organic american cheddar and some green beans from the dining hall 2 nights ago–quick and simple. I absolutely love the Trader Joe’s cheese here; not only is it organic, but it’s so processed it needs to be called a “cheese product”. Sign me up! I eat up contradictions like that(clearly).

Any other organic junk foods you crave? Newman-O’s, perhaps?

Here’s a giveaway for coconut peanut butter from Tropical TraditionsHere’s one Amazing (grass) giveaway. And here’s a Chobani giveaway.

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Feeling FRESH

Posted on January 17, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review, Restaraunt Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning afternoon! Actually, I “gave myself the morning off”, which doesn’t mean much when you don’t do much but has a great psychological boost behind it 😀 Have you done something little for yourself that’s made you feel 10 times better than you thought it would? Do tell, because I’m always looking for little things like that. When I make a lunch in the oven or anything more intensive than the microwave, that always has me feeling like a million bucks.

Vegan Meatloaf With Smokey Ketchup, Broccoli With Nutritional Yeast

This lunch yesterday was neither “fresh” or made in anything but the microwave, and yet still had me feeling like a million bucks. I decided to finish off the vegan meatloaf. My first thought was “Wow, this is really a lot. Maybe I should portion better.” followed by “Oh well, it’s all healthy foods so it’s OK to go a bit over on.” ended with “This is all healthy?! I need to make another one this week!” Clearly, we know what I’ll be doing at some point soon 😉 I topped it with ketchup and liquid smoke(love this combo) and some nutritional yeast; I think I need to get a pound of nutritional yeast next time I go to the Dedham Whole Foods and I’m not even exaggerating.

After lunch my mom went her way and my dad and I went ours and I feel like we went everywhere! First up was Job Lot, which always has fun finds. This time it was maple and blueberry flavored agave nectar, but I passed on any of those. Then I happened to stumble on an unbelievable sale at Price Chopper while waiting for my dad to pick out socks.

Lightlife Soy Beef And Buffalo Wings

Lightlife products were buy 1 get 1 free! I only bought 1 and got 1 and now I’m thinking I should have grabbed more but oh well. I’ve been wanting to try their Buffalo Wings forever so now was my opportunity! I’d never have paid $5 for them had I not gotten a log of soy beef for free–love that last part. I can’t wait to make beefy things with it(a burger? Ooo Summer’s been gone for too long).

After Price Chopper I pretended to be an educated individual and took us to Borders. I love the idea of book stores; there’s so much variety! Buuuut… I always end up looking at the same food books. Haha, one track mind much? And I ended up buying one!

Cook This Not That

I think the Eat This Not That series is one of my guilty pleasures, and I was able to get this for $14 with a coupon. This is my 3rd or 4th, and it’s all about recipes of restaurant favorites. Normally I don’t bother paying for cookbooks and just use the internet or my own head but I love ones like this that also have interesting and unique facts and articles. Did you know the pecan is the most antioxidant-full nut? Fascinating. I also looked at Michael Pollon’s new book about food rule, which looked awesome. It also looked like a lot of things that seem like “common sense” to me after reading In Defense Of Food, though, which I did not feel like paying $10 for. But words like “You can eat all the junk food you want so long as you make it yourself” is what people need to here!(and good news for me with all my peanut butter cups ;-))

Milk Chocolate Peanut Butter Chunky

Well, not a peanut butter cup, but still some wholesome junk food I packed for a snack instead of a granola bar. After that we ended up at Target followed by a trip to the eye doctors. Good news and bad news–I’m just as blind as I was a year and a half ago 🙂 I remember when I first got contacts and the employee had to sit with me for 30 minutes while I tried to figure out how to put a lens on my eyeball. I felt soooo bad taking forever, I just wanted to give up. Now I pop them in and yank them out like putty, haha. Oh how times change. And on the way home we dropped by Whole Foods where brussels sprouts were on sale! We didn’t have these at all this week, so I grabbed 3 pounds. Will that be enough? I doubt it.

Thai Peanut Primal Strip

We decided to be fun and funky and go out for dinner last night, mostly through my own persuasion 😉 Before we left I wasn’t really hungry but had this thai peanut Primal Strip I was sent to review so I wouldn’t get hungry waiting for dinner. I hate being hungry at restaurants; then you can hardly enjoy the delicious food! I liked this strip as a quick and portable protein source–definitely an upgrade to the sugary granola bar and held me over well. I really wanted somewhere I could eat vegetarian and not pasta, which is a rare breed around here. We ended up driving back to Framingham past the eye doctors to Big Fresh Cafe. I’d never been there before, but you can just look at their website to see how awesome they are and how tough it was to choose one thing from their amazing menu.

Teryaki Vegetables And Tofu Over Organic Brown Rice

I ended up going with the teryaki vegetables and tofu over organic brown rice. It was awesome! I think this might have been the first time I’ve had someone else prepare tofu for me–so good. What I loved most was how this was basically fast food, with no fuss ordering and quick cooking. You’d also never a place devoted to natural, fresh food was here; it’s next to a Papa Gino’s and across from a McDonalds and has the tiniest sign. But we’ll definitely be coming back again! This was what was left of my plate.

Leftovers

Don’t worry; we took it home in a container and I’m going to make fried rice one of these days for lunch. Why let some good organic brown rice go to waste? On the way home we stopped at Whole Foods again(I know; we live here) because my dad and I didn’t actually get any protein for dinners that my mom would eat. We left with a hunk of beef and enough chicken breasts to fill Playboy. When we got home, I was held over well by my meal, but inevitably reached for some chocolate.

Goat Milk Yogurt With Chocolate Raspberry Jam And Original NibMor

Don’t you hate finishing a really good bar? This was my last piece of NibMor original–so sad. Then again, I can’t really say I have a chocolate shortage. Even my jam has chocolate in it! Or at least this one did; it was a fun twist on the raspberry and goats milk combo. I didn’t think I’d be hungry for a bowl of oatmeal later on but I was, much to my pleasure.

Egg White Oatmeal With Chocolate Cherry Peanut Butter

I got to try out my egg whites I bought at Whole Foods; they add such great fluff to the oats! Now I get why bloggers love them. It’s a bit more expensive than just buying the eggs but I’d hate to waste yolks. In my dream-filled mind, the yolks to these were all used well in pudding and custards. Likely? Probably not, but I can hope. And I tried out the new chocolate cherry peanut butter I bought with X-mas money. A little low on the peanut flavor but I suppose there are mroe reasons to eat and like it than peanut.

This morning I very much just wanted a good, full workout. I started off with my core while watching some Sunday morning cartoons. What else is more motivating during push-ups than Cartoon Network? Beats me. When I got to the stair portion, I decided to give a new bar a try.

Chocolate Cherry Almond Luna Protein

I also picked the chocolate cherry almond luna protein up at Whole Foods, and unfortunately it just did not rock my socks 😦 I don’t know what it was about it that was so unappealing; it really did taste like chocolate cherry almond! But still did nothing for me. I ate half and gave half to my dad. So when I got to breakfast I was ready for something anything other than chocolate, cherry, or almond.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Nutritional Yeast And Smart Balance Peanut Butter

So Delicious Soy Yogurt With Vanilla Sugar

Organic Red Delicious Apple

Organic Red Delicious Apple

I just love the nutritional yeast and peanut butter combo! I’m going to need to buy a pound from Dedham Whole Foods before I go back to school in a week and a half. I mixed 1/2 a tablespoon in with the pumpkin and reserved 1/2 a tablespoon for topping along with a big glob of Smart Balance Peanut Butter–holy yum was this good! Alongside, I felt like a plain So Delicious soy yogurt agave sweetened and topped with vanilla bean sugar. This “held me over” but didn’t really “fill me up” so I reached for an organic red delicious apple at the end which did the trick.

I enjoyed my morning off with some SNL and web-browsing. How ugly will the Jay Leno and Conan thing get? Really, I just wish something would be resolved because they’re two great hosts and it’s sad to see all this bickering mar their good names. After my parents went to a birthday party, I whipped up a lunch for one, inspired by the cafe last night and all the FRESH foods I’ve been seeing.

Lightlife Buffalo Wings, Carrots And Broccoli With Cashew Almond Dressing

Where to begin? The wait on the buffalo wings–totally worth it! I just loved these; if I ever were to really go vegetarian(that’s a HUGE if right there), I’d be content with living off these. Hell-I don’t think I’ve had a real buffalo wing in sooo long and I’m still content with these. There was a creaminess about them that was unreal. For the veggies, I steamed them while whipping up 1 tablespoon cashews, 2 tablespoons unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and a squirt of lemon juice in the mini-processor. So sweet! It was really perfect with the vegetables in place of something bleu cheese which I don’t have. And then, to end my being veggie streak of almost 48 hours, I had… chocolate?!

Vosges' Bacon Milk Chocolate Bar

That’s right 🙂 I finally broke into this bar that I bought a while back with my Christmas money. I actually think I’ll be just nibbling on it throughout the afternoon while I do work around here because all those fresh veggies filled me up. Tonight we’re getting a storm! Hopefully, it will bring plenty of snow for the long weekend 🙂 I’ve thrown on a FRESH pot of coffee and now I must flip through my Cook This Not That book to find out what’s for dinner.

Contests

A giveaway for Theo Chocolate

Here’s a giveaway for a chocomize bar!

A Zola beverage giveaway(never tried these, but I will if I win)

And an Oogave beverage giveaway(also never tried)

And last(but certainly not least) an awesome vitamix giveaway!

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Really? The Millennium?

Posted on December 28, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Really? All the radio stations here are doing a “look back at the millennium so far”. Do they realize it’s been 10 years and a millennium is 1000? Can’t we look back on the decade and be happy? Or even just the year because that’s all that’s ending? The media is never happy until it blows something entirely out of proportion(although, to be fair, they kind of called it on the Tiger Woods thing).

Soy Meat Stuffed Pepper With Cheese, Onion, Brussels

We had so many errands to run today, I literally took my meal “to-go”. The Lightlife sausage was yummy, as always. I don’t care if soy doesn’t agree with me; I’ll eat it till it kills. First we stopped at the bank to cash Christmas checks(chaching). I forgot my identification but thankfully the teller was super nice and my dad was able to cosign for me. Then we went to Macy’s to try and exchange the food processor.

Black & Decker Food Processor

Thankfully, this woman was not as talkative as the teller. She asked no questions and I didn’t have to lie at all! I just said “We bought this here two days ago and the chute piece is broken”. 2 college semesters of linguistics is a dangerous thing to wield because I really know lawyer speak 😉 After that we went to job-lot for some nuts to grind(1.50 for a pound of peanuts!) and then on to Whole Foods. 2 days ago they said they’d have my bacon chocolate bar today. Today they said they’ll have it Thursday. Ugh. We need to go to Whole Foods Wednesday to get food for a New Years Eve party so we’ll just go to one of the stores I know carries it then.

Banana Oatmeal With Banana Pudding And EB Almond Butter

When we got home after 3 hours of errand running, I was pooped(and hungry). I had a bananarama in this dish, with 3oz mushed banana in the batter and topped with 1/2 a container Zensoy banana pudding. The flavor to this was… interesting. It was a little watery but I think that’s characteristic of soy. The flavor wasn’t awful, but wasn’t perfect.

Earth Balance Almond Butter

I also found this at Job Lot for $4. I think that’s at least half the price of Whole Foods. I bought it from my Christmas fund for good measure. It was good but I think I wanted more of a funkier taste, like Smart Balance has. Maybe add more agave after putting it on the oats? Still, a great deal and great nutrition.

Tofu, Rice, Broccoli

I’m in charge of dinner(well, I thought I was until my mom came home 80 minutes before expected but I’m still going to hold the reigns). I decided I’d make maple tofu for everyone. They aren’t the biggest fans of tofu but I think the prospect of maple will convert them. I’m also throwing in rice, which my mom will probably eat mostly and I won’t touch, and broccoli fries. I hope this all comes out disaster free!

Bulk Bin Nuts

I also picked up these nuts at Whole Foods. Anyone want to take a guess a) what type they are and b) what I’ll be grinding up? 🙂

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Going About Things The Wrong Way

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

Today I feel like there’s been a lot of going about things the wrong way. But I’m OK with that! In fact, I’m better than OK because realizing you’re doing something wrong is how you do it right the next time.

Leftover Wild Atlantic Salmon, Trader Joe's Instant Mac And Cheese

As tasty as my lunch was(and it was tasty), I realized that my view on food this week was wrong, wrong, wrong. I was going on with a mentality of eating basically to empty out things and have less to deal with Friday. Well, I tried to convince myself that I’d be “OK” if I was living off unpumpkined oatmeal and peanut butter for the second half of the week but that’s just not how I’d feel. New plan: Take it low and slow and eat what I want, when. If stuff’s leftover, it’ll just follow me back home.

I realized I was approaching this week’s finals and papers with the wrong mindset. This one’s harder to explain, especially pertaining to the Latin paper, without boring the crap out of all of us. New plan: Have a plan. Take things as they come. But most importantly, know you’re still a very accomplished person no matter what and 1 bad final or paper could never change that.

After lunch I was craving an apple(weird, right?), and staring down the apples on my microwave from the dining hall. However, clearly they were overripened and would have upset me more than feed any craving. New plan: Go buy an apple from the mail room convenience store.

Red Delicious Apple

Apple Crispness Close Up

I’m not into buying things I can get for free, but oh my God was this worth it. It was ripe, and crisp, and juicy, and 120% hit the spot like no other apple has since we went and picked our own. While I was there, I also got a really awesome package.

Beads For Life Bracelet

Cranberry Orange Nut Bread Clif Bar, Mint Carob Bar, Chocolate Whole Food Energy Bar

I won a giveaway from Errign’s blog for a Beads For Life bracelet and she could not have thrown in more perfect secondary prizes. I can not count how many times I’ve picked up carob chips and wondered how’d they taste only to tell myself “Finish the 2 types of chocolate chips, the white chocolate chips, and the peanut butter chips first, and then you can buy some carob”. I can’t wait to make some minty yogurt, and that bracelet is going to be the perfect gift for someone. Thanks Errign!

I realized that I was not doing a favor by letting myself run low on yogurt to clean out the fridge.

2% Yogurt With Cherry Butter And Goji Cherry Cacao Cookies

New plan: Stock up on Greek yogurt when you find it. Because I go through it like wildfire and this was my last plain. And it was incredibly tasty, too. I thought I’d use my last 2 goji cherry cacao Goji Gourmet cookies after perusing their new site. 9.5/10? You bet these are one of my favorite products. This was a nice protein snack, but then I needed fatty fats.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pepita Sun Butter And White Chocolate Chips

I thought I was reading myself right when I wanted vanilla and decided to add white chocolate chips to my oatmeal. Unfortunately, they just weren’t hitting the spot.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pepita Sun Butter And Vanilla Almond Butter

New plan: Scrape off the white chocolate chips and replace them with vanilla almond butter. This was a really Nutty bowl with the pepita sun butter and vanilla almond butter, and it was much better than the original. Sometimes you need to undo a little of what you’ve done to get it just right, but isn’t it so worth it when you do get it right?

Lastly, I’ve been cheating myself and you all a little(though mostly myself) by never tapping in to the communal kitchen. Yes, we have one. And there’s pots and pans to use so long as you clean up after yourself. I was inspired by Caroline to make scrambled tofu. Of course, in her case there’s no egg involved and I was also craving egg, so I mixed 3oz soft tofu with 1 scrambled egg

Cooking The Tofu And An Egg

The pan was odd and took some getting used to but I got the hang of it once it heated up.

Broccoli, Grilled Portabella Mushroom Caps, Roasted Red Peppers, Scrambled Egg And Tofu

New plan: Make use of the kitchen here more next year. This was delicious. The tofu and egg had the perfect meld of runnyness and chewiness which went perfect with some vinegary ketchup. I’ve also come to the realization that soy doesn’t sit so well with me. New plan: Nothing. It may not sit with me but I still like it and that’s not going to stop me from enjoying it so long as it isn’t a health hazard. The whole meal was nice, as I wasn’t feeling like something too heavy but wanted to really get my veggies in.

And now to finish off the night I’ll be potentially finishing up my paper, studying a bit, and then getting a good night sleep. I have a Latin final at 9 tomorrow. The timing is not good for me at all but c’est la vie. I’ll sleep in, have some rushed oatmeal, and hopefully rely on talent to get through it(because I don’t plan on studying for it with the other, more threatening final on the horizon). Have a good night!

Here’s a truly holiday giveaway for you all to enjoy

Go check out the new Actors’ Diet website for a giveaway

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A Crisp Autumn Day

Posted on November 2, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

*Sidenote* A good friend noted that my vegan pumpkin pumpkin butter brownies were not actually vegan as TJ pumpkin butter has honey in it. Thankfully, I wasn’t baking for any vegans, but take note of that if you plan on trying them. Otherwise, enjoy.

Today really is crisp! I don’t think we’ll hit 60 degrees 😦 But I’m talking about yesterday for now. Yesterday, it didn’t really look like running weather when I woke up. It looked like baking weather. I “prefueled” with a couple cups of decaf and made an awesome breakfast: Vegan Apple Crisp. I found a recipe I used to make great and simple apple crisp 2 years ago; I just swapped out the butter *shudder* for organic smart balance vegan butter spread *slightly-less-of-a-but-still-a-shudder*. I’m still not down with the butter thang. And it’s definitely not a health thing because even the “healthy alternative” gives me the willys. I think I should see a psychiatrist on this butter thing(that was sarcasm. I have better ways to spend 100 dollars in an hour). It came out beautifully.

November 1st 001

Vegan Apple Crisp

It has whole grains and fruit, so it was good enough for breakfast.

Vegan Apple Crisp, Peanut Butter Oikos With Milk Chocolate PB Cup

Vegan Apple Crisp, Peanut Butter Oikos With Milk Chocolate PB Cup

I needed candy to cure my Halloween hangover–you know how that goes. I loved having time to catch up with tivo and do some homework. I think the people on Top Chef were reacting a bit too strongly to having to cook for Natalie Portman, a vegetarian. Anyone remember on Top Chef Masters when they cooked vegan and gluten free? That was a challenge. I might have had some more of this,

November 1st 004

Vegan Apple Crisp

so that by 11 o’clock the pan looked like this

November 1st 008

Vegan Apple Crisp Pan

To my knowledge, I was the only one who had eaten this yet. Thank god I’m a runner, and don’t bake this every day 🙂 More specifically, I’m a runner who ran 10.05 miles in 1:20:53. It felt so nice and crisp out, but my stomach was a little full. Still that was a great pace for my neighborhood and I’m surprised I kept it up the whole way. I showered for lunch when we got back, and we had a very squashy meal.

Brussel Sprouts, Sweet Potato, Baked Pumpkin

Brussel Sprouts, Sweet Potato, Baked Pumpkin

My mom baked a whole pumpkin along with the rest of the meal. It was fun to scoop but I was not a fan of the hard seeds and we all agreed it was very tart. Oh, Libby, teach us your ways of pumpkin! Even though there were 4 potatoes roasted, I opted for one cooked in the microwave. I love the chewier texture, it makes it feel not like baby food(which I already eat for every other meal of the day). Before leaving home for one epicly long trip back to Campus, I served myself a couple scoops of one of my favorite frozen yogurts.

Elan Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Elan Vanilla Frozen Yogurt

Holy cow’s milk frozen yogurt is this stuff good. When you let it sit just to the point where it’s starting to melt and lick it, it tastes just like a frothy milkshake. I also like that it’s a bit richer because of a touch of cream but still has decent nutrition, and all natural pronounceable ingredients.

First on our stops was Target to look for Vanilla Cranberry peanut butter: no luck 😦 I didn’t even go in because I didn’t want to get distracted so I just had my dad check for me. After that we did the Whole Foods thang for a couple yogurts and some steak sauce. Across the way was Market Basket for some more yogurt and waffles. I really wanted chocolate vitatops but all they had were bluebran and banana nut. I was tempted to buy the banana nut just out of compulsion but resisted because I knew it wasn’t what I really wanted. There was a quickie snack in the car to ward of crankiness.

November 1st 015

Chocolate Brownie Z-Bar

This definitely helped get past the chocolate disappointment. But then I remembered that the Stop And Shop near campus had a very large selection of vitatops and actually sold them at a decent price. No place is better than Market Basket, but Stop And Shop certainly beats the other options near me. We swung by there and I found them 🙂 That Stop And Shop would be a great option for me to get food at cheaper more often; unfortunately it’d be about a 2 mile walk and through some rough parts of Providence 😦 I’d rather be safe and poor than save a few bucks only to get mugged. When we got back, I had plenty to put away, including all the new stuff we’d boughten.

Groceries

Groceries

Did I mention there’s a 2 dollars off 2 Oikos coupon on Facebook and Oikos at Market Basket is a dollar each? Aka, free Oikos. Score. Nothing else was free, or really on sale… At least I’ll be eating well 🙂 What was not well was finding mold in my apple butter!

November 1st 019

Moldy Apple Butter

Serves me right for eating this about once a month. How ironic, too, that I just picked up one yesterday to bake with and left it at home. I’ll grab it next weekend or something. I was going to spread it on this english muffin, but peanut butter just had to do.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter

Who am I kidding? There was always going to be peanut butter; now there was just more of it. This held me over for catching up on The Office(I know, I know, I’m really behind). Thankfully, it also held me over through “dinner”. I met with my friend at The Ratty, which was good because we’d lost touch since Wednesday or so. What wasn’t good was any of the options on the lines. Rather than try to make a meal that wouldn’t have satisfied me, we just sat and talked while he ate. ‘Twas fun, but I was a bit more than ready to make something I’d eat when I got back to my dorm.

Flamegrilled Gardenburger, 2 Scrambled Eggs With Mushrooms And Light Cheese, Broccoli, TJ Ketchup

Flamegrilled Gardenburger, 2 Scrambled Eggs With Mushrooms And Light Cheese, Broccoli, TJ Ketchup

This was soooooooo worth waiting for. I’ve never understood why people put eggs and mushrooms together until I tried it; this was deliciously meaty yet savory, and the cheese made it feel rich. I love Trader Joe’s ketchup with just about anything savory. It’s not quite as sweet as it is vinegary so the flavor works a bit better I think. And as if I didn’t eat my fair share of veggies yesterday, a veggie burger surely helped. Meals like this make me think I really don’t need the dining hall and could probably eat just fine off a meal plan and for less money. Because there wasn’t enough funky flavor in my life, I made this for The Amazing Race.

November 1st 004

So Delicious Plain Yogurt With Vanilla Stevia, Vanilla Sugar, And A Milk Chocolate Neman's PB Cup

 

Sorry, I’ll stop doing this combo when it stops being so good. That’s not happening anytime soon? Shucks. The list of ingredients in “plain” soy milk is kind of funnily long but it still has that beloved soy flavor, which goes really well with the sweetness of the peanut butter. I was slightly disappointed with last night; my plan for the weekend was to have all my homework done Saturday so I could work on the 3(yes, 3) essays for Greek History, but Greek the language was a time whore that required far too much of my attention. Maybe we should all be thankful to speak and understand the one language we learn as a baby? Yeah, good plan.

Oatmeal With Semisweet Baking Chips And Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

Oatmeal With Semisweet Baking Chips And Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

 

I realized I hadn’t had oatmeal all day. What was wrong with me? Clearly, this bowl needed to be made in a jiffy. Butter I may not do, but Naturally Nutty’s Butter Toffee Peanut Butter is a clear exception. I have not seen this enough around the blogosphere and can’t help but wonder porque? If you’re nervous about making the step from a super market PB stalker to an online PB predator, it’s understandable, but take my word and just go for it! You won’t be disappointed. Don’t even make the mistake of ordering sampler jars on flavors that sound incredible like I did my first time because you’re only going to have to reorder that much sooner.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Cream Cheese Oikos "Frosting"

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin Roll With Vanilla Cream Cheese Oikos "Frosting"

One of the things grocery shopping has taught me is to know what to budget on and what can be your special splurge. Do I need that box of granola bars because it’s a different flavor than the one I have? No. And they’ll taste the same now as the day I have a coupon and they’re on sale. Somethings, on the other hand, make sense to treat yourself with, like these. They’re obviously wholesome and healthy(and vegan, too!), and they work out to be decently priced(1.10 a roll), so I don’t mind “splurging” on these from time to time. Brothers & Sisters was, as always, great last nice. I liked Balthazar Getty’s appearance but it looks like he’s going as quick as he came back.

I had set my alarm for 7, then brought it back to 6:40 because of the extra hour. I actually woke up before that and didn’t need it. It was light out, too, so I wasn’t fumbling to make coffee in the dark–oh joy! I had a ghoulish snack.

November 1st 013

Trader Joe's Ghoulie Gummies

I completely forgot about these for Halloween! They still tasted as good. Just a warning to anyone thinking of picking them up: They are all-natural but they aren’t vegetarian because they use animal gelatin. First I was thinking 8 for this morning, but then that turned to 10, and then 12. I can’t say I know quite how that happened because they were definitely not an easy 12, but I felt determined and wasn’t about. I think that run had me wanting sugar when I got back, because for breakfast I used a good amount of it in my favorite form.

 

Pumpkin Oatmeal

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Maple Almond Butter And Maple Syrup, Oikos With Maple Syrup And Crunchy Maple Sunrise Cereal

Maple! I’m thinking I should ask my grandparents for some high-quality maple syrup for Christmas or Thanksgiving. They’re from middle-of-no-where, NH so they probably have a neighbor who makes his own or something. My grandpa was once on PBS for being a lumberjack for over 40 years 🙂 Right now the one I’m using is from the Dedham Whole Foods but it won’t be around for long! I love the new Nature’s Path Organic maple cereal, which I still need to review. I think it comes out this month so keep an eye out for it!

Speaking of Nature’s Path… Nature’s Path Giveaway!

 

 

Chobani Giveaway! Over at Abby Has Issues

Who doesn’t want some hot chocolate in their life for the cold season? Check out this giveaway.

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