Reuniting With Avocadoes

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

Do you love avocado? I. Love. Avocado. But I forgot I did; today was a relearning of that of sorts.

Red Delicious Apple

Red Delicious Apple

The sun hadn’t quite came out by 11, but I’m really a morning runner, so I scarfed down this apple and went out to see what damage the rain had done to Providence. Surprisingly, the path wasn’t awful! How good since I needed to run up and down it 3 times to get the mileage I wanted.

11.5 Miles In 1:37:57

11.5 Miles In 1:37:57

I ran 11.5 miles just under 1:38. On the 3rd turn, I headed back down Hope street specifically so that I could stop at the happiest place on earth: Whole Foods; there’s something so amazing about ending a run here. The plan was to shop around, grab something for lunch, hurry home and prepare it there. I spent so much time browsing the prepared food that by the time I chose I just had to eat it then. All the meat dishes looked “meh” and overpicked while the soy options smelt heavenly(but that would have gone against Lent as “prepared soy”.

Honey Spiced Turkey, Avocado Massaged Kale With Roasted Cashews, Indian Cauliflower And Peas

Honey Spiced Turkey, Avocado Massaged Kale With Roasted Cashews, Indian Cauliflower And Peas

Since I didn’t plan for lunch there, I only had my camera phone to capture this; but it really was an amazing meal. The turkey wasn’t dry, and had a nice spice blend on the skin with a surprise note of cinnamon; I never would have guessed I’d like that there(TWSS). BUT by far the most amazing thing here was the avocado massaged kale with roasted, salted cashews

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Avocado Massaged Kale

Avocado Massaged Kale

H.O.L.Y. Y.U.M. Massaged kale is the dish I heard about most when raw foodists say “Well, we don’t use that much preparation all the time. Most of the time we just rub avocado with kale and are set with something simple like that.” They are too modest. This combination is amazing. It’s so much creamier than I would have given it credit for. Does anybody have a recipe they’d be willing to share? I think I want to make this for Easter!

Avocado With Sea Salt And Hemp Oil

Avocado With Sea Salt And Hemp Oil

You can say I had avocado on the brain all afternoon–I couldn’tget enough! For a snack, I halved one and topped 1/2 with Foods Alive hemp oil dressing and sea salt and the other half with just sea salt. Why don’t people snack on avocadoes more? They’re so refreshing and filling!

Tazo Refresh 0 Cal Tea

Tazo Refresh 0 Cal Tea

To wash that down, I had my last Tazo 0 cal tea, this flavor Refresh. I’ll admit: My first reaction was not a favorable one. It reminded me a bit of mouthwash. But it also completely grew on me, and by the end I was feeling refreshed and wanting more! I am loving the inflow of stevia sweetened beverages into mainstream brands.

Juniper Original FroYo

Juniper Original FroYo

It was SO nice out today–we hit 60 and with sun! This is big for New England lately. I think frozen yogurt from Juniper was definitely in order. What is it about sweetened, tart whey that tastes so darn good? I feel like it’s not the cleanest thing to eat, but then again no one’s eating this everyday so it’s OK in moderation.

Divine White Chocolate With Strawberries

Divine White Chocolate With Strawberries

While I was waiting for dinner to cook, I read this article concerning chocolate reducing heart taxation. It’s a good read if you want to convince yourself that all that Easter candy is fine! It made me hungry for some of my favorite white chocolate by Divine. Of course, then I read the part about white chocolate not counting because of the absence of cacao powder; I guess I’ll just have to have dark chocolate later to compensate 😉

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries

Grass-Fed Burger, Sweet Potato Fries

I still had 1/4 lb of beef  to use up or freeze before tomorrow; the latter sounded like the better option. I made in a pan the grass-fed burger while roasting somesweet potato fries in EVOO at 350 for 45 minutes. Delicious! But now I can’t wait to grill over the Summer. Do you grill? If so, what’s your favorite thing? Mine is by far burgers, and all kinds! Salmon, tuna, veggie, beef, turkey, even bison.

If you didn’t read my morning post, I announced the Celestial tea winner. If you didn’t win that, you can enter one of these giveaways for Nature’s Path, Oikos, Vitalicious, and lunch boxes!

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Grocery Shopping RI

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

The Grammy’s are starting soon, and I’m not sure if I want to watch them, so I’ll just type super fast just in case. Speaking of grammies, I saw mine today. But first, lunch.

Jalapeno Al Fresco Chicken Sausage, Broccoli With Soy Sauce

I just could not get in to the idea of “brunch” so I had a late breakfast and a small lunch. I wasn’t that hungry but I had an odd craving for broccoli and soy sauce(how good does that sound?) so I threw on one of these sausages and called it a meal. Voila! Plenty of sodium for one day. At the end of this, my dad arrived and brought a few goodies from home, mostly being things I forgot. Are chopsticks essentials? No, but they’re fun 😀 My mom and grandmother(who came along “for the ride”) were waiting in the car and they took me to Trader Joe’s.

Trader Joe Groceries

Would you believe there’s just 1 Trader Joe’s in all of Rhode Island? The next closest one is the one in Framingham I go to when I’m home. I don’t know how you Trader Joe-less folks do it. Actually, I do know: You go to Whole Foods and pay a little more. Sorry 😦 I just wanted to get every simmer sauce and curry I could find for meals! But realizing that wasn’t practical in my dorm fridge I just got mostly plain things like tofu, tempeh, salmon, pilaf, and the rest of what you see. Clearly there’ll be more pudding with all them avocadoes 😉

Libby's Pumpkin

After that, I made us take quick detour to McDonalds for coffee(which I defend by pointing out that everyone else in the car got coffee driving down and didn’t bring me one), and then we went to Stop & Shop for some pumpkin; I knew if I went in it would take 10 minutes and I’d come out with 5 extra things, so this time my dad just did the shopping. He still took 10 minutes, but got the 1 thing on the list.

Whole Foods Groceries

Whole Foods Groceries

And then, of course, it wouldn’t have been a trip without going to Whole Foods. I was actually a little disappointed with this sales period; there was soooo much I picked up and wanted to try but couldn’t really “justify” getting. Instead, I kept it simple again. I guess the two “treats” I got were the dark chocolate coconut candy bar(umm, yum!) and some dark meat turkey for dinner. The Crofter’s Organic Europe Superfruit spread I had a coupon for because, if you remember, I got a bunch of their jams to review for the blog but that one unfortunately broke during shipping. One “fun” thing I almost bought was vanilla goat milk frozen yogurt with brownie pieces in it coming off sale Tuesday. It took a lot of restraint from buying that, restraint and the promise of this:

Vanilla Greek Yogurt With Peanut Butter Chocolate Black Bean Brownie And Chocolate Peanut Butter

I defrosted one of the peanut butter gluten free brownies I made for New Years and crumbled it warm into a yogurt. Then I melted a little of the Justin’s chocolate peanut butter in the microwave to drizzle over. Holy yum! Vanilla brownie ice cream who? This completely had my attention while I was catching up on emails/putting groceries away. Unfortunately, I still felt like I could chew my arm off, so I had another snack while waiting for dinner.

Apple

A little mealy but not bad for free from the dining hall. Dinner was a sweet potato I threw in the oven at 5 and the dark meat turkey I bought. I really didn’t know how to make it so I called home. No answer. I then called my mom. No answer. Finally, my dad picked up his cell phone. Why was no one answering? Because they stopped at a casino on the way home. I’m glad nothings changed in my absence.

Cooking Dark Meat Turkey

Since I couldn’t get in touch with my mom, I went ahead and guessed that the turkey would be fine in a pan on its own since it should have enough fat in it already to cook. That was pretty much right. I cooked the meat through and then let it rest for 5-10 minutes while I worked with the sweet potato and such.

Turkey Burger With Ketchup, Sweet Potato With Cinnamon And Sea Salt

Ah, this came out wicked good*said in a Bauston accent*. I don’t think there is any real “trick” to meat; I think there are just old rules which people either follow or ignore. Don’t work with it too much. Let it sit. And, if you really want flavor, use a fatty cut. It’s that simple to get something juicy and delicious. The sweet potato was perfect and practically fell apart after roasting for 90 minutes. I was craving cinnamon on a sweet potato and that hit the spot. I think I will watch the Grammy’s soon; I hear Elton John and Lady Gaga are performing together and how could I miss that?

Tomorrow’s the first day of February, and let’s just say there’s a bit of a special surprise in store for the morning post. I also have my “long run” of 8 miles first thing. Ahhh I need to start stockpiling fuel via chocolate!

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Too Cold For Anything Else

Posted on January 29, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Recipe | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Today has just been too cold for anything other than what I did and was done. My hands are recirculating, and my jeans have been long swapped for PJ’s by now. I suppose that when they announce an “Extreme Cold Advisory” on the news, they mean business. Backing up, I had some weird cravings for lunch. It was just too cold to want something real or excited. I managed to reign back my cravings a bit and make a semi-normal lunch.

Root Beer Zevia, Turkey With Mighty Maple, Hickory Honey BBQ Baked Kettle Chips, Steamed Broccoli

Turkey With Mighty Maple, Hickory Honey BBQ Baked Kettle Chips, Steamed Broccoli

Did maple peanut butter jump out of the jar onto my turkey? It just might of… with a little help. I prefer dark meat, so if I’m going to have white meat turkey I better stick some fat in there somehow; the sweet maple was pure craving, but at least it worked well with these chips.

To-Do List

I probably should have heeded the weather warning and stayed indoors just because I could but I had a bit of a list to work on. At least while I was out I managed to get it all done. I’m officially on a lower meal plan, trading 110 meals and 125 flex points for about $240 dollars;It’d definitely be a “better bargain” to have stayed on but what’s the use if it goes to wast? Nada.

Books And Notebooks

I ended up returning 2 of my books and buying them new; I try to buy used when possible but these were a little too used and they’re books I’ll be looking at for a while so I figured the extra money was worth it. The final total for the semester was around $350–not bad considering the majority of the books are in my concentration and I’ll need beyond this semester.

Tazo Calm Tea

It was too cold not to get tea while I was near a campus convenience store. I threw everything on the bed and considered making a snack, but wanted to get to a dining hall right at 4 to grab things for dinner and get in for the night before it got colder. Or so I thought. I got there at 4:10. They opened at 4:30. But unless I wanted to go back into the cold(absolutely not), I would just have to wait there. So I did. I didn’t end up getting back to my room until 4:45.

Cooked Vegetables, Raw Broccoli, Sandwich Lettuce, Apples

At least it was a productive shopping trip. I don’t know if you’re supposed to load up two large take out containers with vegetables, but no one particularly stops you if you do. You might get odd looks, but no words. I was starving and just threw together the best thing I could think of.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Mighty Maple

It was too cold not to eat pumpkin oats with maple peanut butter. Nothing would have made this better, unless it were made in the jar; I think that’s a principal of life. Instead of eating more after this, which definitely would have spoiled my appetite for dinner, I just decided to invest a little time and “make something” that’d be nice. Since I was craving Indian, I mixed 2/3 a can of chickpeas, 1/3 cup pumpkin, 2 tablespoons ketchup, 1 tablespoon steak sauce, 1 1/2 teaspoons indian spice, and enough watter to thin it. Normally I’d prefer a tomato based sauce but it was too cold not to utilize pumpkin(and that’s all I had on hand). That made about 3 servings, so I took 1 and saved 2.

Vegetable Melange, Pumpkin Indian Chickpeas, Raw Vegan Brownie

Pumpkin Indian Chickpeas Wit Full Fat Greek Yogurt

Raw Vegan Brownie With Raw Chocolate Frosting

This was pretty darn good. The chickpeas came out nice and spicy, with the pumpkin to add some savor factor. A dollop of full fat yogurt, though, really made the whole thing come alive; the dish needed fat and depth. Speaking of fat, the raw vegan brownies are still just as delicious. It was too cold not to have something sweet to finish of dinner. Do other people eat the best part of their meal at the end, too? I always did this as a kid, but people would confuse this for me not liking something and picking it off my plate before I would get to it. Not cool. No one got my brownie.

Don’t think having chocolate with dinner meant there won’t be some for dessert; it would just be too cold to ignore chocolate like that. I do feel somewhat bad on skipping out on a friend’s birthday party tonight. But if I went–and in this cold–I wouldn’t be enjoying myself, and I’m not convinced she’d notice me there amongst the other 100 facebook friends attending. So after all I don’t feel bad about ditching it for some light and humorous reads.

Homework

Wow are there a lot of giveaways going on now. Here’s one for a bread machine. Here’s another for coconut oil! Here’s one for some delicious bars. And here’s one for iHerb shopping spree! Here’s one for chocolate. And how about one last one for chocolate, here!

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Let’s Try This Again

Posted on January 26, 2010. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I’m officially back, blogging from a dorm room! The lighting is awful; I can hear into every room from mine; and I’ll be running back and forth to the bathroom for everything from water to plate cleaning. Welcome back to me 😀

This morning was hectic with packing and organizing. I really tried remembering what I never used 1st semester and what I wish I had, trying to bring the perfect amount of things. The food processor did not make the cut; it would have been too bulky for my little room, and I’m sooo overprotective of it I’d need 10 feet of bubblewrap to move it. Banana whips will have to wait for the weekends I’m home. Since the weather was soooo nice, we grilled for lunch!

I had really odd cravings for my final meal. We grilled a frozen bison burger that I made out of ground bison back in September. When I took my first bite, I realized it was seriously undercooked(which says a lot coming from me), so I committed the cardinal sin of meat by microwaving it to cook it.  At least it was became edible. On the side I had broccoli(duh) with soy sauce, ketchup, and peanut butter! I just really needed to fit peanut butter in there somehow. The earthiness of it went great with bison.

After the car was packed and we left, wed ended up taking 2 hours just to get to campus. We needed to stop to pick up last-minute food items, but it seemed like all the stores were reorganizing or out of things! Only after Market Basket and Whole Foods did we find canned pumpkin at Stop & Shop. Ugh. I think the shortage is starting to take effect. When we were almost here, I started getting hungry and reached what was in the closest box behind me.

Vivani Dark Chocolate With 85% Cocoa

Lucky for me, that turned out to be dark chocolate 🙂 I liked this flavor of Vivani, but it felt a little bland all by itself. It would have been really great in yogurt, with peanut butter, or just about any application other than plain because the sweetness and bitterness were both so dim. 3 simple, organic ingredients(cocoa mass, cocoa butter, and sugar) though make me a happy man 🙂

We had a happy system going when we finally got here: I stayed in my room putting things away while my dad brought them from the car, up the stairs, and into the room. I really liked that deal 😀 I think it all looked like so much more in the car than it does in the room, that or I did a good job organizing it all. When I was halfway through, I had a made time for a quick snack.

Chocolate Vitamuffin With Fig Goat Milk Ice Cream

Yum! I love the chocolate and fig combo, even though it doesn’t sound like a match made in heaven. The goat milk ice cream is Laloo’s brand, which I bought a few weeks ago and brought on campus to keep in the basement. I hope I can eat it before someone steals it, because it cost a good deal(and this was with my money, not the parents’). This snack made my line of thought go from “How am I ever going to eat all this?!” to “I bet this’ll be gone before I know it.” I forgot how big my appetite can get when I’m on campus and running again! Let me give you a quick tour:

Books And Appliances

On my desk, I have my alarm, coffee maker, some movies I’m sure I won’t get around to watching all semester, and books(mostly pleasure reads I won’t get the pleasure of actually reading). On top, I keep all my electronics on the left and spices/seasonings on the right–gotta have those at quick hand as a foodie.

Closet Space

My closet has just about everything but… clothes. OK, there are some shirts in there. There’s also my coffee, chocolate, shopping bags, pots, pans, storage containers, towels, utensils, and plates. I’m glad it has shelves because that’s the majority of my storage space(I couldn’t fit myself in there and close the door so at least I don’t have to worry about getting locked in).

Underbed Storage

And, as any college student knows, bed raisers are a saint. No, really, I don’t know what I’d do without my under-bed storage. This has all of my food that doesn’t need to be refrigerated, a LOT of bars, more nut butters than you would believe, natural sodas, and, at the end, dirty laundry(as in, literal dirty laundry).  Well that’s my space! I hope you like it. So, I’m sure you’re all sitting on the edge of your seats wondering how my first real “meal” back went, right? 😉

3oz All-Natural Dark Meat Turkey, Asparagus Cuts, Lemon Tahini Cauliflower

Pretty darn good if you ask me. From the dining hall, I was able to scrap up asparagus tips and cauliflower in a lemon-tahini sauce, which was actually quite delicious! One of the great things about my dining hall is that the ingredients for all of their dishes are readily available so I’m able to know if the food fits my current food philosophy(and these obviously made the cut). The main protein was leftover turkey from Sunday lunch, which I chose to eat tempeh instead of then. I took every shred of dark meat I could because I like it better; yes, it has more fats, but it also has more flavor. And since I just occasionally eat moderate amounts of meat for enjoyment anyway, it’d be silly to opt for the leaner but flavorless cuts–that’s just my 2 cents.

It’s almost time for Biggest Loser and American Idol! I love how something are very much changing, like location and what’s on my plate, while other things are more constant, like good friends and good television shows(and by “good”, I mean trashy, addicting reality TV :-D).

Here’s a coconut peanut butter contest! Yum. I like my peanut butter any which way.

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The 11th Commandment

Posted on December 11, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Have you had the chance to check out my new HoliDEALS page? or enter my giveaway? Yes? Good, then let’s continue.

After having been on self-promoted dorm arrest for the past few days with the first of 4 papers let’s not talk about it, I decided to obey the 11th commandment: treat thyself. In this case that manifested with a trip down to Eastside Market and Whole Foods right after breakfast. It was chilly, but I was a man on a mission *insert serious face smiley*

Ok, it was really cold, so I was relieved to make it in Eastside Market and snoop the new sales. There really wasn’t anything that looked enticing, but I did find a Tofurkey Farm.

Tofurky Products

They were full price so I didn’t feel pressure to snag anything. But I’m comforted to know these are still existing at least until Christmas. I just picked up some squash and decided to see if there was more at Whole Foods. How had I not noticed organic gum drops before? I was very tempted to grab these but the price had me putting them back. I also noticed bulk bin oats were on sale, which had me laughing; usually don’t things go on sale and people pick them up “to give the a try” or because “they’re too expensive regularly but now they’re on sale.”? I’m pretty sure neither has ever applied to oatmeal. There was a lot more meandering and picking up things to only put them back; I wanted to just pick up a few things that I knew I’d eat and finish.

Groceries

Ok, so maybe I did buy some bulk bin oatmeal 😀 But I was going to buy it anyway. I also obeyed commandment 11 by treating myself twice(is that too holy?). I grabbed herbed turkey for dinner and a carrot cake slice that was calling my name. I quickly made a “healthy”ish lunch.

Snobby Joe, Baby Carrots, 1/2 Slice of Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

If you’re going to have carrots, you really ought to have carrot cake, too. Or is that the other way around? To be honest, my favorite part of this meal was the snobby joe, followed by the cream cheese frosting. How is that possible? Maybe I’m just not a sweets person as I thought because, while it was good, some oats with melting peanut butter would have been fine, too. Oh well. Sometimes we do what we think we want and it’s not right; how could I have known I’d be happier with 3/4 pound gumdrops for the same price? C’est la vie.

I worked a bit more created a twitter account just to play and win Chobani’s spoons. Score for free Greek yogurt! You can follow me @FunFuel, but if you expect me to ever update it you are sadly mistaken 😦 I was totally bought with yogurt. After my super nutritious lunch, this was definitely in order:

Apple

And then a trip out. I swung by the mailroom which meant some more calm:

Tazo Calm Tea

Ok, this tea is growing on me slightly. I also swung by the dining room, because it was so cold I knew I wouldn’t want to leave my dorm 2 hours later when it’d be even colder. Brussels were on the menu. What was actually there was stir-fried(read: dripping in grease) veggies. Not cool, dining hall, not cool. I grabbed some apples and a banana to replenish my fruit stash and went back to make a snack.

Pumpkin Oats With Honey Maple Peanut Butter And A Chocolate Pillow Cookie

I think after two weeks my pillow was ready to be a crumble. It kind of looks like a mudslide pudding, don’t you think? Well it didn’t look like that for long because I was ravished and attacked this. Apparently carrot cake digests fast and isn’t very filling 😦 Who would have guessed? It’s a vegetable, right? But the peanut butter(which is high protein) totally took care of that. Then again, I don’t think I needed another reason to like peanut butter more than cake. Dinner was touched with a little magic. And when I say magic…

Indian Curry Spice

I mean this Indian spice I picked up. Except it was salt free–is that a contradiction? Good thing I have plenty of sea salt to go around.

Herb Roasted Turkey, Broccoli, Acorn Squash With Curry Spice And Maple Syrup

This was one meal in which the 11th commandment was kind to me 🙂 The turkey was perfect. As you know, I don’t have meat much because I opt for only organic, natural, or wild, so it pains me when I do find meat like that but it’s flavorless. This was soooo juicy and bursting with herb flavor. Truly that beat out carrot cake and gum drops. And the combo of maple syrup and curry is just killer; it sounds a little iffy but you try it out and you just “get it”, if that makes sense. For dessert, I acknowledged that sometimes you just need chocolate.

Chocolate Yogurt With Midnight Moo Sauce

And I forgot how bitter real cocoa powder could be! Seriously this had plenty of vanilla stevia and vanilla sugar as well as the Midnight Moo sauce but some scoops still tasted really dry. I think I need to buckle down and by some sugary sweet pudding. Trader Joe must make that, right? I finished my 2nd paper while eating this 🙂 It was by far the easiest assignment, but 2 down and 2 to go still feels like a huge relief. Mid-30 Rock I had a HUGE craving for a warm and gooey, buttery blondie.

Cascadian Farms Vanilla Chip Granola Bar

I don’t know what’s sadder; that this is marketed as “healthy” or that it 120% hit my craving. I was just happy I had it. And it’s good to keep bars like this around to honor the 11th commandment. Since I’m an intense creature of habit, I needed to finish the night off as always.

Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter, Chocolate Vitatop, Advent Chocolate

I ate this while watching Matt Damon on Leno; the man gained 30 pounds for one of his recent movies and couldn’t have had a better attitude about it. He talked about how the “man’s version of anorexia” where no matter how ugly or out of shape you are you think you look like Brad Pitt(btw, this is so true). Do you think you could gain weight for a role?(or, if you’re already an accomplished actress, have you?) I think if they gave me enough guidance and an intense trainer to whip my butt in the gym to pack on muscle, I’d do it.

This morning I definitely honored the 11th commandment by sleeping in 30 minutes. It wasn’t even “sleep” because I was awake the whole time, but sometimes it feels really good just to lie awake without a care. When I did get to the gym it was rather empty(score) and I felt very energized from the night before(double score). Not looking at the treadmill infor for the first 5 miles really helped the time pass, and in the end I wound up going 12–10 purposefully and 2 more to see Mark Bittman on the Today Show(He was making cheddar shortbread cookies. Need I say more?). But when I got back I was way in a peanut butter mood.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance And Mighty Maple

2% Peanut Butter Yogurt With Strawberry Jam

Yum! I don’t think a double dose of peanut butter counts as treating yourself; it’s too healthy. But it sure does taste good! And I’ve found the trick to peanut butter yogurt made with peanut flour: salt. It makes so much sense. I love salted peanut butters, so why not carry that over?

At the moment, I have a very full inbox and google reader. So naturally I’m surfing the web for anything to help get my mind off of those.

Here’s the original article. As you might guess, with my all-natural diet, I advocate always looking at the ingredient list first; you can usually get a good sense of the product just by what’s in it and how much. But I also really like this new food label for Americans who don’t pay the same attention to ingredients. And I really like the idea of “added sugar” and not just “sugar”. Did you know lactose in milk and fructose in fruit are included as sugar in products? That’s why a plain Chobani has 7g of sugar even though the only ingredient is milk.

Check out the Healthy Eats blog peanut butter taste test.

Here’s a lovely giveaway for some winter goodness–soup!

Holly’s having a lil’ giveaway as well!

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The Swing Of Things

Posted on November 30, 2009. Filed under: Book Review, Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Good morning! In case you were travelling over the weekend, there was a new recipe dreamed up on Black Friday, a review of Clif bars, a day that had me blushing beet red, and a 2nd, meatless Thanksgiving.

After that awesome lunch, I needed time to digest on the couch with Montana, and then got to work on my next project.

Christmas Tree

The Christmas tree. After chopping it down yesterday and leaving it in the cold overnight, we finally brought it in. Traditionally, I do the lights and the cranberries while my mom does the ornaments afterwards; since I was moving back to my dorm I needed to do this snappily. I was happy at the end 🙂 I love the lights on a Christmas tree. I think the ornaments are always nice and personal but it’s just not a tree to me if it doesn’t light up.

Afterwards we got to packing up. I dreaded this. It always feels like I have more going back than coming home, and this time I knew I did because of all the leftovers and extra clothes. Ugh. Thankfully with enough helping hands in the house this wasn’t too bad and shaped up pretty quick.

Packed Bags

I think it was a backpack, 3 bags of food, 2 of laundry, 2 of random machinery, and a stevia plant. Because, really, how could I live without all of that? We swung by my grandmother’s apartment to pick her up because she likes to come “just for the ride”. Wouldn’t it be nice to have time to go for a ride just because you have nothing else to do? 60 more years and I’ll be there.

Double Chocolate Pillow

Of course before hitting the highway we wento McDonald’s for some decaf and I broke out one of these cookies. I think it’s always the case that things grow on me after a few days, because 4 days later and I’m now becoming obsessed with them. Seriously, just smelling the cocoa–bliss. On the way down we stopped at Target looking for a movie. Alas, no luck 😦 But underwear was on sale and that’s close enough to grab, right?

Moving back in was actually quite quick and painless with enough helping hands(again). The rug looks awesome since my mom brought down her vacuum to clean it up(thanks!). I definitely lost track of time in all of this and realized I was hungry. A little cookie is not a substantial afternoon snack, but you know what is?

Laloo's Strawberry Darling Goat's Milk Ice Cream

Ice cream. I’m surprised this has survived the common freezer for so long, but yesterday I decided it was time to polish it off(only about 1 serving left anyway). I love the tang of the balsamic vinegar in this. Something tells me adding balsamic vinegar, even an organic one, to strawberry chobani wouldn’t work the same. When all the groceries were away I enjoyed staring at a full fridge.

Full Fridge

Really? Is there anything more blissful? I’m surprised I managed to cram it all in there; it looked like it might not make it and I’m glad I left some tofu at home for another weekend. I also found this which I snuck into my bag:

The Killer Angels

I don’t really “pleasure read”, and if I had time to, I’d probably choose a book I haven’t read, so I’m not sure why I brought this. But I do love and recommend this book for anyone wanting to read a psuedo-historic novel. I did a huge paper on it and the battle of Gettysburg in 11th grade. As you might know, I’m a Classics major, but besides that American history 1640-1865 is my other area of interest. There’s a movie, Gettysburg, based on this book I have yet to see but I can’t wait to find it some day.

Dinner started off a little disgusting; I went to get one of my sweet potatoes and found it covered in mold–yuck! That’s actually never happened with the food I keep under my bed but I guess there’s a first for everything. Instead, I had to improvise.

Broccoli, Turkey Breast, Cinnamon Raisin English Muffin With Lightlife Breakfast Sausages And Maple Syrup

You know how sometimes your eyes are bigger than your stomach? Yeah, story of my life day. First there was being stuffed from a stuffed tofurkey and acorn squash, and then there was this. The turkey wasn’t anything special, I just wanted to eat it up before it got moldy like a sweet potato. The english muffin with sausage was the real money maker here. Does anybody else remember McGriddles from McDonalds? That’s EXACTLY What this was like, except with infinitesimally less trans fat. Oh my God, so good. Rest assured it will be made again. Unfortunately, there was one casualty during dinner.

 

Broken Amazing Grass Bottle

 

My Amazing Grass bottle 😦 I dropped it on the floor while it was full and water went pretty much everywhere–fun. After cleaning it up I went to the bathroom and tried refilling it, wondering why it kept being empty. Smart one, Evan. I think they carry these at Whole Foods? That’s what I’m hoping at least. After getting ahead(ahead! not catching up!) on work I made a snack and settled in for A Dog Named Christmas.

 

Peanut Butter Soy Yogurt With Fig Jam And Peanut Butter Chips

 

I don’t expect much from cheesy, holiday, made-for-TV movies, but this one was even below expectations. I expect them to suck, but to also be cutesy, and the child acting in this was not cutesy. This snack also did not disappoint even though I was iffy on the flavor combo. I think I forgot to sweeten the base but thankfully I bought a Vanilla flavor. I completely forgot I even had fig preserves but they were still just as good. And the pb cheeps were nice and sweet, nothing at all like real peanut butter and yet just as magical 🙂

After I’d put up with bad child acting for an hour, it was time for a new Brothers & Sisters. Last weeks episode was not on because Adam Lambert needed to whore it up at the AMA’s, but this week there were supposed to be great plot twists and secret revealings–it did not disappoint. Midway, I snacked on this:

 

English Muffin With Pumpkin Cream Cheese And Honey Maple Peanut Butter Topped With Me And Goji Granola

2 english muffins in one day? I was on a roll. I liked the crunch from the granola. And the gojis I’m sure were some decent brain food. I also love “rediscovering” peanut butters I forget about. Brothers & Sisters I thought was awesome–can’t wait until the wedding(or will there even be one?) next week.

I was exhausted so I knew I wanted shut eye but for some reason, as tired as I was, I wasn’t getting to sleep. I don’t know how much I slept overall or how many times I woke up/had weird dreams. This was one harsh “welcome back” to the swing of things. When I woke up, though, I was ready to meet my old friend–the gym. I made a quickie snack.

Kashi Strawberry Flax Waffle With Banana Peanut Butter

Normally I like bars that I can take on the treadmill but for some reason this was what appealed to me best. When I got there, it was packed for 6:50am(read: 3 other people). But then it quited down and the regulars started showing up. I didn’t concern myself too much with pace or anything; I was plenty happy to be back and watching the Today Show(does anybody care about Tiger Woods’ car crash at this point? really?). In the end I did 12 miles in 1:38:59. That’s almost exactly like yesterday, which is good because I tend to be slower inside than out. When I got back, I relearned how to make a dormroom breakfast.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pepita Butter And Maple Frosting, Eggnog Yogurt

This microwave just ain’t the same as the one back home. For the oats I used Caitlin’s pancake frosting recipe with a little vanilla stevia. I think my cooking skills were on vacation and are just getting back, too, because everything was underseasoned/sweetened. Afterwards, I added more stevia and cinnamon to the yogurt and some vanilla sugar and salt atop the oats and that perked things up.

And so, clearly I’m relearning dorm life after a week of bliss. I suppose with finals and papers coming up I won’t even notice the time between now and Christmas vacation, right? Now if you’ll excuse me, it’s cyber Monday, and as dirty as that sounds I have some deals to catch.

 

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Not Quite Bloody

Posted on November 29, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

If you want a good laugh at another’s embarrassing story, by all means read on. After sleeping in, not running, and blogging yesterday morning, I got around to breakfast. I wasn’t super hungry from pre-sleep turkey but oats are always appealing.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Smart Balance Peanut Butter And Banana Pineapple Frosting

See? Always appealing. At first I think I oversweetened the greek yogurt for the frosting(who knew this was possible?) so I added a little more plain to dilute it and it was muy perfecto.

Even though I had declared my rest day and the wind was 20 mph, I decided to gear up for a 6-7 mile slow paced run. And then the morning got a little weird(feel free to skip to lunch if you don’t want to hear tmi). After a pre-run trip to the bathroom, something I was fearing happened again–my “stool” had red color running through from it in the toilet water. This had actually happened several times in the past 2 weeks between that and urine, but I, being a stubborn Pollack, would rather ignore anything that looks negative from a medical perspective. Having happened two days in a row, though, I brought it up to others and suggested we go to the hospital. I think just about everything went through my mind as I showered and went from running clothes to day clothes; all of this thinking about diseases really had me anxious and pushed my limits. And then when I came down ready(though not quite mentally) to face my medical fears, Dr. Dad had an explination: beets.

Beets, as described by wikipedia, are a member of the amaranth family. The are a root vegetable with a bright red pigment, and over the past 2 weeks when I’ve been home my mother has been preparing them at a much more common rate than usual since she discovered how easy they are to prepare. And one of the side effects is having red coloration in the toilet. Well, very perplexed, I consulted the blog and looked at all the days I remembered being worried by this and when we ate beets. And it seemed that, always a day or two before an “episode”, I ate beets. Really? I was thrown into all this anxiety, embarrassment, and anger because of beets? Ugh. We nixed the trip to the doctors and now I’ve ressolved not to eat beets for two weeks to make sure they’re the culprit(and then never again because I’m not going to go through this BS). That pretty much wasted my morning and the run, so I moved on to homework and then lunch.

Stuffing Stuffed Pepper

2 Eggs Scrambled With Celery And Shredded Turkey

I made two of the leftover dishes I’ve been wanting to since Thursday. I heated up a pepper in my pan and some stuffing in the microwaved for a delicious stuffed pepper. If it were a little bit more runny of a stuffing, it would have been perfect, but it was still good. I loved the slightly runny eggs with the turkey; it sort of made its own sauce, and was a perfect protein with a little salt. I’m going to miss making proper eggs when I get back to the dorm today. After lunch we decided to pick up our tree. While my dad drove, I walked(it’s not even a mile down the road). They even let me cut it down. Now whose bright idea was it to hand me a saw?

Cutting Down The Tree

It wasn’t a perfect job, but no fingers chopped off. After I walked home and the tree was dropped off, we took a trip to Whole Foods. Don’t you hate missing a sales period or weekender? Well, they didn’t look too too good this week, but I was glad to get a bunch of deals between coupons and sales and then the stuff we needed. We also stopped at Trader Joe’s and Stop & Shop. Has anybody noticed that Trader Joe’s doesn’t sell chocolate covered peanuts, milk or dark? They sell chocolate covered everything. I can sooner get chocolate soy beans than I can peanuts. Ummm, what? Though they do now have chocolate oranges with all natural flavorings which I hope to have one of this season. Oh well, that was pretty much the only thing on the list we couldn’t find.

Groceries

I got a total of $4 off two Green & Black products between coupons and sales–score. Can you tell I like my organic chocolate? The star of the trip was the Tofurkey! It’s for my dad and I for lunch today, and was 3 dollars off at Whole Foods 🙂 I figured since it’s a frozen product that’s good for 2 more years, it wouldn’t go on sale any more than that so I seized the day. I can’t wait to see what it’s like. I also couldn’t wait on another Whole Foods find:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Pumpkin Cream Cheese, Peanut Greek Yogurt

A Whole Foods exlusive pumpkin cream cheese was on sale for 4 dollars a tub. It had in it pumpkin, honey, ginger, walnuts, and spices. It probably wasn’t something I couldn’t have made, but it was convenient and sounded good. And it tasted awesome! The spices and walnuts really worked with the creaminess and it was very sweet. And though the oatmeal and yogurt were in two containers, rest assured they were eaten as one 🙂 Before dinner I caught up on Slapsgiving 2–legen, wait for it… I also tried watching an SNL but it crashed everything and that was the end of that. For dinner I forwent leftovers *gasp*.

Lentils In Trader Joe Curry Simmer Sauce, Broccoli, Roasted Zucchinni, Full Fat Voskos Greek Yogurt

One of the non-sale items we picked up was Trader Joe’s Curry Simmer Sauce; I was looking at getting a prepared Indian meal but the sauce was a better bargain. I cooked some lentils and let them simmer. The flavor was good, but it probably could have used a little more curry. The yogurt I felt was very Indian and a nice touch 🙂 This meal reminded me, though, why I hardly ever have lentils or beans even though I love ’em(i.e. buddha belly and discomfort). I suppose it was that or sleepiness from turkey, right?

There was an entire Charlie Brown Movie on ABC Family. I love my specials, but after 90 minutes I was tuckered out and couldn’t finish it. Instead I moved on to fun for the whole family: Knocked Up. What else is better to watch with the fam? I also had a vitalicious snack.

Coffee And A Vitabrownie

 

On a paper plate because, at 9pm, I’m not aiming to impress anyone 😉 I still think these taste best in circular form with evident chocolate chips(i.e. the vitatops), but they didn’t have them where these were on sale for 3.99 so I compromised for a bargain. The rest of the night was filled with about 4 cups of decaf coffee, and then this two-faced inspired snack.

Vegan Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raising Roll With Smart Balance Peanut Butter And Pumpkin Cream Cheese

Um, perfection. Since coming home I have not stopped craving smart balance agave sweetened peanut butter. Have you noticed? That’s why I picked some up at Stop & Shop to take back to my dorm. I don’t know why the flavor is better than molasses sweetened, but it is. This pumpkin cream cheese is also to die for; I loooove that it has crunchy walnuts for texture. And the vegan rolls are just always euphoric 🙂 I went o bed nice and happy with this in my stomach, until I woke up at 4:45 and couldn’t sleep. I decided maybe I was hungry and that this snack would knock it out:

Cinnamon Raisin Gnu Bar With Pumpkin Cream Cheese

I tried this new gnu bar, heating it up in the microwave and then topping it with the cream cheese. Wow, this was all good. The bar was just like a good slice of cinnamon raisin bread with a nice earthiness, and the cream cheese made it perfect. It definitely filled me up, but that must not have been the problem because I was still awake for quite some time.

I woke up at 8:30 this morning–a tad bit of an improvement from 9, right 😉 It’s definitely time for me to get a move on it and make breakfast. And, who knows, a run might even happen today(could you imagine that?). I’m going to need to make plenty of room for my Tofurkey for lunch! Haha.

 

Sodastream Giveaway! I could make some very bubbly seltzer with this bad boy 🙂

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Target Hopping

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

Yesterday was the epitome of a rainy day in New England. It did get off to a rockin’ start, however, when I got this in the mail right as I was posting yesterday’s blog entry:

Me And Goji Granola

I got the opportunity to custom build my own cereal from [me] & goji. Let me tell you, this was a ton of fun! I’ll go into the process more in my review of them on another day, but they have TONS of options for you to pick out and make your very own cereal. I ended up making a mix called “Chocolate And Berries” with vanilla granola, gojis, raspberries, blueberries, chocolate covered gojis, and chocolate covered peanuts–yum! Of course I was ready to dive in for breakfast.

 

 

Banana Oats With Chocolate Butter Toffee Peanut Butter, Chocolate Raspberry Yogurt With Chocolate And Berries Me And Goji Granola

Loved it! Thanks [me] & goji! There’s definitely not skimping on the mix-ins with them; this was like chocolate and berry overload(except that’s of course not possible). I think my favorite was the organic chocolate covered peanuts. The oats were so simple and yet hit the spot; a touch of sea salt on top really had the flavors placed. My morning was pretty lame, but that made it excellent. I was stuck home alone in the rain, and the highlight was showering and getting straight back in to pajamas 🙂 Montana was clearly in the spirit, too, since he got out of his crate, went to the bathroom, and fell asleep under a blanket. I made lunch in time for Days.

 

 

Stuffing, Spicy Chicken Sausage, Broccoli, Grand Marnier Sweet Potatoes

Have I mentioned that I love leftovers? I never have them when I cook for myself, but I think it’s fun to play with them when they come around. Everything here was leftover except the broccoli, which I made because I wanted some green. I think I’ve taken in more alcohol from those sweet potatoes than I have since being at college(OK, that’s not saying much with me). I will never tire of Whole Foods’ stuffing; thank God we have 24oz left. After some soap opera and homeworking, I decided to transition to the kitchen.

Seasonal Music Channel

Oh yes, there’s a channel that only plays Christmas music, all day 😉 Sometimes you have to wonder what barrel they scraped the bottom of to get the renditions of carols by the people they do, but other times they’re quite festive. Anyway, I decided to make up a new recipe and hope and pray it came out good(and chocolatey!).

Double Chocolate Pillows

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup turbinado sugar
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips

Wet And Dry

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and line 2 cookie trays with wax paper. In a large bowl, sift together the first five ingredients. Mix in the chocolate chips evenly distributing. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs with the oil and extract. Add in the pumpkin and sugar and mix until all is dissolved. Pour the wet into the dry and fold together until fully incorporated(batter will be very thick). Scoop into 24 mounds, flatten, and bake for 10-12 minutes, until puffed and firm to the touch.

Thick Batter

The batter was incredibly thick; I was thinking of maybe adding some liquid, but I’m glad I didn’t. They ended up taking 14 minutes in my oven, but smelt so good when they were done.

Double Chocolate Pillows

Hello, chocolate. These were so soft and light but with a heavy, rich cocoa smell. Of course, in order to truly appreciate one, I had to try it first over oats.

Pumpkin Oats With A Double Chocolate Cookie And Butter Toffee Peanut Butter

Much better. The cookie was delicious, with a very dark taste of chocolate. It wasn’t quite bitter, but also not sweet. Bittersweet maybe? I’ll definitely make these again, but I might swap the 1/4 cup oil for 1/4 cup cream or full fat yogurt to give it more of a milky flavor. I’m sure you could go the otherway and veganize this recipe fairly easily, too, but I was not feeling that creative. When my parents finally got home from the funeral, I took the chance to get out of the house.

Target

Thankfully, Target had died down 12 hours after it opened. And surprisingly the store wasn’t entirely picked over. Then again, there wasn’t much left. I found a good deal on a camera, which a, let’s just say aloof, salesgirl led me to believe they had but when the manager came and I tried buying it pointed out it wasn’t the right one. Well they supposedly had some at another Target, so we picked up some things and moved on. After that we hit up a natural grocery store and Stop & Shop and, lastly, the other Target. When we got there, however, those 11 cameras they supposedly had were no longer. Wtf? They assured us they’d get some overnight if we really cared to come back. I’m not sure I’m that invested in the purchase, so I’ll have to give it with more thought. In the end my shopping was a lot more modest.

Shopping Loot

I either got really screwed on some stuff or really good deals on the other, because the peanut butter chips were the most expensive item by $2+ dollars. It was also well past dinner by the time we got home from Target hopping.

Roasted Brussel Sprouts In Balsamic Vinegar, Catfish, Roasted And Mashed Butternut Squash

Who buys two types of fish the day after Thanksgiving when there’s well over a few pounds of turkey in the fridge? My mother, apparently. And yet I’m the one who gets the name for being a wasteful shopper. That pretty much rubbed me the wrong way for the night, but rather than try to pick a fight I just took a plate of food and removed myself from the situation. I hardly feel comfortable having meat once a day, and I don’t feel comfortable at all wasting it, so all of this is meat overload for me and has just made me feel tense thinking about it. To take my mind away, I had a delectable snack.

Soy Yogurt With Peanut Milk Chocolate

This candy bar definitely had me with “caramelized peanuts with a touch of sea salt”–could somebody please adapt that and put it on my gravestone? All Stop & Shop had was flavored soy yogurt, but it was also on sale for a dollar, so good enough. I think there’s a bit of irony topping soy yogurt in milk chocolate that I never appreciated until now… I also watched this week’s Modern Family, which was more than fantastic. Can Fizzbo please come to my party? It’s OK if the comb sheaths aren’t there, though.

Green & Black Organic Peanut Milk Chocolate

I didn’t like this chocolate bar at all. That must be why it followed me upstairs and into my room 😉 After a while I had trouble sleeping. Hmmm, maybe sugar isn’t a better night time snack than oatmeal? Fascinating. I had a pretty genious thought, though.

Free-Range Turkey With Salt And Rosemary

Tryptophan! I’ve heard it’s also in legumes(and thus peanut butter) but I’m sure in greater amounts in turkey. I salted and seasoned 3oz of leftovers. While that was good, it didn’t do the job, so I did another 2oz. After that I good have fell into a food coma, and was asleep soon enough.

This morning I slept in until; I think vacation is making me lazy, haha. Isn’t that the point of Thanksgiving? It’s not looking like running weather and I could always use rest(I just never take it) so today will probably be a sans running day as well. Maybe I’ll work up a sweat at Target or a Whole Foods–we’ll have to see.

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Thanksgiving 2009

Posted on November 27, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Hopefully with a title like that it’ll be easy to find in the archives 😉 How was your Thanksgivings?(if I haven’t already read about them on your blogs). Mine was pretty fantastic I’d have to say. But why take my word–the proof is in the pictures!

Firstly, the relatives were running “a little behind”. This is absolutely expected every time. So it didn’t really change anything. I knew Thanksgiving lunch wouldn’t be for a few hours, and I had no plans to touch the appetizers, so I got a head start on dessert.

Deep Chocolate Vitatop With Cocoa Greek Yogurt

Can you tell I had a chocolate tooth? I just mixed cocoa powder and sweetener with the yogurt and voila–it was so thick I think had it been frozen for 30 minutes it would have been like ice cream. At around 1:15 the relatives showed up(which impressed us who thought they wouldn’t be here until 1:40). They came bearing gifts.

Organic Balsamic Vinegar And Lemon Pepper Oil

Maple Syrup From Berlin

*Swoons* Something tells me my relatives are finally starting to “get” me; the maple syrup actually was on my Christmas list!! Now I need something to take its place, right? As predicted, my little cousins had one thing on their mind: video games. They aren’t allowed to have game systems besides a computer(they’re only 8 and 3) so my house is like gold. When they were doing that, the adults had appetizers:

Homemade Meatballs, Whole Food Stuffing Stuffed Mushrooms, Cheese Platter, Trader Joe Chicken Wontons

I’m pretty much the opposite of a grazer, and was still satisfied from my vitatop, so I was fine skipping all this. My mom’s meatballs are kind of famous within the family; maybe some day I’ll steal borrow the recipe and make it with bison and organic sauce. I don’t think I’ve seen someone attack appetizers like my grandfather on those wontons. Apparently he’d been “saving” calories all last week for today. Probably not the healthiest thing but when you’re 75 who’s to say you can’t do what you want.

Carved Turkey

The turkey rested while people chatted and then we got to carving. Notice how on the left it’s pulled like pork and on the right it’s nicely carved in tact. Guess who did the right 😉 My mom was anally organized about the table and had labeled everything a place so set up was fast.

Thanksgiving Table

Like usual, my mom and I were the first to the table with the old people behind only because they’re… slower. And the uncle, aunt, and cousins were running around enthralled with video games, haha. My cousin wanted me to help him on a level but I told him I was hungry, and when my grandmother said I’d need to prioritize with my own children I assured her that’s a ways away. And then there was food.

Turkey, Stuffing, Roasted Brussels, Organic Jellied Cranberry

Delicious. The turkey, from Whole Foods, was free-ranged so I felt perfectly fine digging right into it. Ironically, I probably took less than 2oz of meat! I think meat being absent so much while I’m at school makes a little seem like a lot and have me appreciate it more. My “strategy” going in was just to take 3 or 4 foods, even though there were plenty more on the table. I didn’t want to do a “sampler” of everything; I knew I’d have all this for leftovers so I’d rather eat what I did take and ignore what I didn’t. No regrets here or in the foods I did choose. I’ve loooooved cranberry sauce from a can since being a boy and am so happy that this didn’t have HFCS in it. Here are my 3 living grandparents also enjoying the meal:

Enjoying The Meal

We swiftly started heating up pies, defrosting desserts, and cleaning plates. I completely failed on taking a picture of the dessert line up but there was my pie, Trader Joe lemon bars, homemade berry pie from my grandmother, store bought cheesecake, chocolate and vanilla ice cream, and a Carvel birthday cake.

Blowing Out The Candles

Tuesday was my grandfather’s 75th birthday. Happy birthday! Hopefully he doesn’t eat like that everyday or there’s no way he’s hitting 76, haha. There was also another unique item welcomed to the table.

TruWhip

This week I received a coupon from TruWhip to try and review their product. Could you think of a better time than Thanksgiving? Unlike its competitors, TruWhip is 100% natural, 70% organic, with no hydrogenate oils or HFCS. Not only was I happy to try this but it felt great to serve to my family. I took plate of the natural goodies that fit my hunger.

Pumpkin Pie, Trader Joe Lemon Square, TruWhip

What a sweet way to end the meal. The pumpkin pie came out as good this time as last time. The lemon square from Trader Joe was good but not superb; it was definitely better than any lemon bar I could’ve made from scratch. The real shocker here was the TruWhip, which everyone seemed to enjoy. It really tasted just like the competitor to me. I must admit there are some things I miss since eating all-natural so it’s always fun when groceries like this come along. It was light and airy, sweet with a hint of cream. I think the only one who wasn’t convinced it was an identical match was my mom, who went in with a slanted opinion to begin with. I think a carton is only 4 or 5 dollars, and since it can be refrozen for another holiday, this is completely worth buying and keeping around for a naturally special event.

Everyone had a good time and piled out by 5 o’clock. I think the most tired of the day was Montana, who was already sleeping on the couch. We tried passing off as much leftovers as we could but in the end our fridge was full. At least what we have is real food we can work into any meal over the next few days. By 5:45 I was feeling munchy.

Raw Vegetables

I started to work on the leftovers with the raw veggies. My mom couldn’t understand how anyone would still be hungry after Thanksgiving; I believe it’s called not eating 3 slices of Carvel cake? I was happy with eating until I was comfortably full and knowing how much was enough–I absolute despise that “overstuffed” feeling. Right like clockwork I had a dinner for one made and ready for 7.

Brussels And Tempeh Bacon With Maple Syrup, Grand Marnier Sweet Potatoes, Lightlife Breakfast Sausages

3 delicious meals in one day–how lucky am I! I wasn’t quite up to real meat for the time, so instead I let my protein be soy sausaged and tempeh bacon. I steamed and then pan seared some brussels to add some crust, and drizzled maple syrup at the end. The sweet potatoes were one of the dishes I passed over at lunch because I knew there’d be leftovers, and I rather liked this because it made it feel like I was eating a completely new meal! They were pretty good, but I think my mom had a heavy hand with the alcohol because these were pungent, haha 🙂

You know I was right there for the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Special(it helped that Survivor was just a clip show, too). After a cup of coffee for good digesting, I got to work on more leftovers.

 

Plain Soy Yogurt With Cranberry Sauce

 

I will never understand how something like cranberry sauce has become accepted with dinner and not as dessert but I’ll just be thankful for that 🙂 We got 365 organic and it is perfect. Not only does it not have HFCS but it’s and also a little less sweet so that the tartness is evenly balanced. Between the textures of jellied cranberry soy yogurt and the flavors this was just to die for.

I was also thankful for NBC’s People Of The Year special. I really hope it wasn’t just me. I think I’m becoming old, because in my head I thought of this as “The Today Show + 60 Minutes + Miracle Grow” and practically wet my pants in anticipation. It lived up to what I hoped. I’m really tired of the Octomom and balloon boy, but I could never get tired of hearing praise for Taylor Swift. Right before I went to bead I had what my day was lacking–whole grains.

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Almond Butter And Smart Balance Peanut Butter

That brought me back to my roots. I’m liking the double nut-butter topping now as opposed to the nut butter and a topping(like chocolate). Not sure why, maybe I truly am just nuts for nuts 🙂

This morning there were plans to maybe attack Target for Black Friday sales with my dad, but my parents had to leave for a funeral at 8:30(irony) and the sales just weren’t as appealing as last year so we called it off. Today it’s planned raining all day so it will, by all likelihood, become a rest day, and I will be between the kitchen baking and my computer studying. Again, hope you had a great Thanksgiving! Now get to work on them leftovers 🙂

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Stop Being So Chicken

Posted on October 31, 2009. Filed under: Daily Update, Product Review | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Yesterday started off normal enough. I ran, ate carbs and oatmeal, got dressed, and walked out the door like this:

October 30th 002

Me In A Chicken Suit

Yes, that is my costume. It’s actually the same from 2 years ago, but I figure I’m at such a different point in my life it’s OK to rewear this one(plus it was like $50 dollars so I need to get my money’s worth of it). I thought Brown was a fun campus? No one else was in costume; what was up with that? My first reaction was “This is kind of embarrassing. Maybe I should take it off.” But then I realized, if I can make just 1 persons day by doing this and having a good time doing it, then it would all be completely worth it. I marched right in to Latin class and definitely caused a few smiles.

I had an hour between class for lunch and last minute studying until my midterm. I rushed to my dorm, logged on my computer to make sure I wasn’t missing anything important(apparently, your blog posts count as important items in my book :-)), and threw together something quite gourmet.

Thanksgiving Sandwich On Whole Wheat English Muffin, 1/2 Acorn Squash With Pumpkin Seeds, Cinnamon, And Sea Salt

It’s not so bad–I could have been eating deli sliced chicken. If the english muffin looks burnt, it’s because it was; I forgot about it while I was fighting with my costume to let me go to the bathroom(full body suits are not for those of us with small bladders, fyi). The acorn squash was a genius idea; seriously, I’m making sure that hits the Thanksgiving table. I think anything squash and salt is good, but the pumpkin seeds really added texture.

I got outside of where I had class 25 minutes early to get some extra studying in. Honestly? I think I rocked it. I couldn’t have felt more prepared going in, and when I saw the terms I had to demonstrate a knowledge of I really put it all on the table. We had to write two “stories” that showed we knew how 12 Ancient Greek terms, people, events, and places related to one another. I definitely took some “artistic license” in my stories, but I think he’ll appreciate it. For epic poetry class, I got hungry. It was an odd time of day for that to happen but I obliged.

Peanut Butter Pretzel Clif Mojo Bar

Peanut Butter Pretzel Clif Mojo Bar

So glad I had this in my bag. Yum! It was great. This was the last of the Mojo’s I had to try and I think it was my favorite. Is anyone else not surprised the peanut butter one was my fave? You can read my full review here, but now that I’ve had them all I’ll be ready to post a recap review soon. On the way back to my dorm another something exciting happened: Emma Watson noticed me! You know how I know she noticed me? Well, she passed me about 1 foot to the right, and it’d be pretty hard not to notice someone in a giant chicken costume. If she had said “Nice costume” or something, I probably would have had a heart attack on the spot.

Well my day was fun and all but at 3 I was ready to get into civilian ware. I also decided I wasn’t as done with this place as I thought I was…

October 30th 010

University Plaza Whole Foods

My original plan for Cookie Friday was a pumpkin maple whoopie pie like I had 3 or 4 weeks ago. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any when I got there. Wtf. Don’t ever walk 1.2 miles somewhere to an uncertain future or you’re likely to have your heart broken 😦 I did get some salmon and Oikos, however, and stopped at Blue State Coffee on the way back for what would be my treat.

When I got back to my dorm I was starrrrving. It was that hunger where you want everything and nothing, and have no clue what to make. Doesn’t that suck? I felt like I was standing in front of my microwave for 10 minutes just thinking and getting no where. Finally I went with the one thing I know never disappoints.

Fluffernutter Oats With Cashew Butter, Fluff, And Banana Pineapple Rum

Fluffernutter oats–how I love thee. The extra 2oz of banana made this super thick and creamy. But since I hardly ever eat my cashew butter, the plop that i had was really lumpy, and I ended up chewing whole dry nut butter. Honestly, at that point, nothing mattered but that I got food. Speaking of food…

Food Bag For Home

Food Bag For Home

This is how much of it I feel that I need to bring home, where there should in theory already be a ton of food. I called my dad earlier and proposed that he pick me up last night instead of this morning and he obliged. That put me in a bit of a mad rush to pack everything, and I remembered what an awful packing problem I have. Oh well, if we were to have gotten stuck in a blizzard on the way back and needed to survive for 5 days, we would have been set. There was still the matter of my own dinner.

Simple Salmon Salad And Broccoli

Simple Salmon Salad And Broccoli

Summer Squash And Zuchinni With Maple Syrup, Sweet Potato

Summer Squash And Zuchinni With Maple Syrup, Sweet Potato

Thankfully, college has made me the king of quick cooking. I grabbed the squash and broccoli from the dining hall, nuked a sweet potato under my bed(well, from under my bed) and heated the salmon from Whole Foods. Something didn’t quite smell right here, but I couldn’t figure out what it was so I ate it all… Don’t even play like you haven’t done that. I got home by 8 and had a pot of fresh ground decaf coffee going by 8:15; it’s good to be back. I just as quick busted this out:

The Elvis

The Elvis

Remember how I mentioned stopping at Blue State for Cookie Friday? This was the spoil. The Elvis is a red velvet cupcake cake with cream cheese frosting with sequin sugar. This is why I say I eat 99.9% all-natural in my How I Fuel section; sure, the food coloring in this probably wasn’t all natural, but once a week in something that’s already a “treat” is fine by me. Plus, this was homemade by a small, local retailer, so overall it’s a quality product. It was just as good as I thought it’d be: moist, rich, and sweet. It’s definitely good I removed myself about 50 miles from the source before eating it or I might have needed to get another. When I realized I’d only had 1 probiotic source for the day, I felt a little disappointed in myself… until this entered my mind:

Organic Peanut Butter Cookies And Cream Yogurt

Organic Peanut Butter Cookies And Cream Yogurt

Yes. You heard right. Peanut butter cookies and cream yogurt. How? I used peanut flour and vanilla stevia to flavor the yogurt, and crumbled in 2 Newman’s Own Organic Peanut Butter Newman-O’s. This was so delicious, but it also made me glad Cookie Friday comes but once a week. All this sugar made me hyper, and when I get hyper I often go to cranky. Some people are mean drunks; I’m a mean sweets-head. One last celebration of cookieness:

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

Toast With Cookie Dough Peanut Butter

It wouldn’t have been Friday otherwise. Food Network wasn’t working in my room; what’s up with that? Instead I watched my standby, Leno, and got a great night of sleep.

Thankfully it was a great day for an outdoor run this morning. I slept in all the way until 8, strapped on some old clothes I had lying around that didn’t go off to college with me, and ran around the block a few(read: 7) times. I ended up running 7.08 miles right at 8:00/mi pace. It felt great to be reaffirmed that running on a treadmill at 8:30/mi pace doesn’t affect my outdoor stride. When I got back, I made a very ‘”homey” breakfast:

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And A Vegan Molasses Cookie, Voskos Honey Greek Yogurt

Pumpkin Oatmeal With Butter Toffee Peanut Butter And A Vegan Molasses Cookie, Voskos Honey Greek Yogurt

Normally, I’m all about the salt. But this breakfast was sweet and sweeter. I love the cookie texture on top of some thick oats; I might need to make another batch of these while I home. And that’s one of the few last yogurts I have to try and review for Voskos! Honestly, this might have been a bit too sweet. But for those of you who that’s not possible for, you’d be in love with a yogurt. The benefit of coming home early was that this breakfast wasn’t eaten in a rush in the car and I can now sit and plan my day.

Zesty Cook is having a really unique giveaway. This is the kind of makeover I’d gladly sign up for.

Lucky Taste Buds is having a delicious sounding giveaway, too!

Who doesn’t love a high quality chocolate giveaway?

Holey Decisions

One of the other great joys of coming home was finding in my freezer 4 boxes of Holey Donuts’ delicious products. Needless to say, this hungry college student was overjoyed to have such great products to sample and review. All you need to do is look at the nutrition to realize what a better option this is than the competition.

Unfortunately, while their products are great in that they’re low calorie/fat, have no trans fat, and no artificial sweeteners, they do contain artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. As a naturaltarian, this was a bump in the road. Should I ignore that temporarily and parade these on the blog like I wanted to? Or do I stick with this boundary I’ve set for myself. I really wanted to just do the former and pretend like no one would notice. But the record number of views this week(my 3 most visited days being Thursday, yesterday, and Monday respectively) are keeping me honest. I realize these are a great option for a certain lifestyle, but that’s just not mine. Instead, I’ll be having my parents sample and review these, and publish them in special posts called “Parents’ Korner” or something really corny like that. They’ve eaten about 10 times more donuts in their life than me, so I feel like they’ll be excellent reviewers.

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