Sunday, January 24, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
Hello! I hope you all had a nice week! I think Vegas has gotten more rain in these past 4 days than we have in all last year! Crazy. I can’t believe how much rain California is getting too. Overall this week has been nice, work wasn’t too crazy, I got my committee together for my thesis (finally) and I may be doing a couple cooking classes for Whole Foods! The site is sooo close, but there are a few things that I need help with still, so I just won’t say a date anymore :) ugh.
I got some pretty good workouts in this week:
Mon - thanks to the handy dandy bike trainer I rode for about an hour watching SYTYCD & tweeting, all while it was pouring outside.
Tues - body pump was a nice hour full-body weight sesh
Wed - Rest
Thurs - 3.5 mile run, progress!!
Fri – early morning spin, woot!
We’ve been having some yummy eats too. I’ll have to share a crockpot pesto chicken recipe with you soon. I think this was the most tender white meat I’ve ever had. Just melts in your mouth like butta’.
And is the bomb for paninis with gooey, crusty pesto cheese.
I think I’m on a muesli kick this week and breakfast this morning was pretty tasty!
This bowl included:
- 1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill muesli mix
- 1/3 cup NF milk
- 1/3-1/2 cup TJ’s NF honey Greek yogurt
- 1 tsp chia seeds
- 1/4 naner
- little squirt of agave + cinnamon
This morning I added some Kashi Warm Cinnamon, 1/4 naner, grapes, peanut butter and Nutella!! oh man the Nutella sent it over the top. Yum!
Plus it just tastes better in a cute bowl :)
Sorry this is so short, I need to get to studying, researching, getting the site presentable, organizing about 2,000 pictures, making granola bars and prepping food for the week. Kabocha black bean burgers are on the menu tonight!
Happy Weekend to you all!
Monday, January 18, 2010
The best part about the weekend, aside from getting to sleep in till 7am and getting caught up with life, is being able to whip up some tasty meals and really enjoy the company of family. Usually during the week I rush home to get something on the table, talk briefly about the day’s happenings and then spend the rest of the night trying to catch up on school work, research, blogs, blogging, etc, never being seen again till bed time. I don’t like that, although for the next 3 semesters it’s going to have to suffice somehow :)
I just wanted to share a couple tasty recipes that I hope you can enjoy with your family and friends or simply in the solace of your own company . . .
Roasted Spaghetti Squash topped with Roasted Veggies & Tofu in a Curry Peanut Sauce
Serves: 2-3 (Chris and I enjoyed it so much, we ate it all!)
- 1 spaghetti squash
- Cooking spray
- 2 cups cubed tofu (I used TJ’s teriyaki flavor)
- 1/2 cup matchstick-cut carrots
- 1 zucchini, chopped + 1/2 red bell pepper chopped
- 1/3 cup chopped green onions (I didn’t have any on hand this time)
- 2/3 cup light coconut milk
- 1-2 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
- 3 tbsp peanut butter
- 1 tsp toasted sesame seed oil
- 1 tsp curry powder + a bit more turmeric
- pinch cayenne or more if you like it HOT
For the spaghetti squash:
Preheat oven to 400 F. Cut squash in half lengthwise, place cut sides down on a foil lined baking sheet. Pour about 1/2 cup water in pan. Bake for about 30 minutes, turn squash over and bake for another 15-20 minutes until tender. I also put a little butter in mine. When it’s done scoop one 1/2 into a bowl and save the other half for another meal. To the bowl with the squash add a splash of rice wine vinegar and toasted sesame seed oil to taste.
Sauté the tofu, carrots, zucchini, bell pepper and green onions until tender and browned. Mix the coconut milk and last 6 ingredients in a bowl and microwave to soften, then add to the sauté pan over low to mix.
Scoop some spaghetti squash on the plate and top with the curry peanut mixture and enjoy!
I really wish we would have had some leftovers!
Next on the list of weekend eats is . . .
These are a favorite in our house and they are fun to make with kids! This would be great for a party too because it serves a lot of people. I first got this idea from Giada and then tweaked it since she likes to use whole fat everything :)
For the Béchamel Sauce:
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 3 tsp all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups NF or 1% milk
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Pinch cinnamon and cayenne
- 1 (15-ounce) container part-skim ricotta cheese
- 2 light garlic+herb laughing cow wedges
- big handful of basil, chopped
- 1/3 cup grated Parmesan + 1/2 cup Italian shredded cheese mix
- 1.5 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- herbs de provence, thyme, garlic powder, Mrs. Dash
- 12-15 uncooked lasagna noodles
- 2-3 cups marinara sauce
- 1 cup shredded mozzarella
To make the sauce: Melt the butter in a pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk. Whisk in the milk. Increase the heat to medium-high. Whisk the sauce until it comes to a simmer and is slightly thick and smooth (may take a bit longer with the lower fat milk). Whisk the salt, pepper, cinnamon and cayenne into the béchamel sauce. Keep warm.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Get out the goods.
Whisk the ricotta, basil, Parmesan/Italian cheese mix, laughing cow, prosciutto, pepper and spices to taste in a medium bowl to blend.
Boil the noodles until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain. Arrange the noodles in a single layer on a baking sheet to prevent them from sticking.
Pour the béchamel sauce over the bottom of a 13 x 9 dish. Spread about 2 spoonfuls of ricotta mixture evenly over each noodle. Starting at 1 end, roll each noodle like a jelly roll. Lay the lasagna rolls seam side down, without touching, atop the béchamel sauce in the dish. Repeat with the remaining noodles and ricotta mixture.
Spoon 2-3 cups of marinara sauce over the lasagna rolls (more if you like it saucy). I got this sauce from TJ’s and it was really nice and fresh tasting unlike most jarred sauces. Cover tightly with foil.
Bake until heated through and the sauce bubbles, about 20-25 minutes. Uncover, sprinkle with cheese and bake until the cheese on top becomes golden, about 10-15 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes (if you can stand it) and serve!
We had a salad on the side with romaine, cranberry goat cheese and walnuts, along with a glass of J. Lohr Merlot.
It is a nice red, slightly toasty with notes of dark cherry and plum. It is pretty reasonably priced too. We played the tasting game with a cute notepad I picked up at Anthro called ‘Rate that Wine’. This would be great fun for parties too.
I had 1 1/2 rolls with the salad and a small glass of wine. After dinner I grabbed a coconut water and we curled up on the couch to watch a movie, but fell asleep not even half way through! Ah well, this usually always happens with us!
It was sure a nice night because Chris and I got to sit down and had a great time chatting over dinner again for longer than usual. That’s another great thing about eating at home, you can sit at the table for as long as you want! :)
With the terrible tragedy that has hit Haiti and continues to trouble their existence, Diana from The Chic Life has developed another great idea to help. She will be hosting a bake sale coming up around January 27th, and all the online bidding proceeds will go to the Red Cross Relief Fund. I have volunteered to bake up a big batch of Gina’s awesome granola and it looks like there are some other tasty goods being made as well. I may just have to bid on some myself! Check out the details here if you’d like to become a baker or a bidder. I just can’t imagine what they are going through right now. While they have had many donations made, it’s been tough actually getting the supplies to them. I feel so blessed to be safe and have access to all of life’s necessities. Thanks for all your help!
Hope you all have a nice week! It looks like we are going to actually have some nasty, rainy weather coming up this week here. I’ll have to be getting on that bike trainer and treadmill :)
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Hello! It seems like I’ve been gone forever and I’m sorry to be MIA lately! I think the new site is juuuust about there. Just a few more little things and it should be presentable at least. I hope. I spent most of today working on it and it seems that I can’t focus on anything else BUT this site!! aaah! I’ve been dreaming about it. Must get it done so I don’t get too behind on school, geez. Chris has been a huge help so far since I pretty much don’t have a single clue, and I’ve been begging, bribing, pleading for him to help finish! I can’t understand why he’d rather watch football . . . hehe I hope to launch it sometime next week *fingers crossed*
In other news, the Eat In Month Challenge is still going good! I have to admit not going out for frozen yogurt sometimes has been a killer, but we are saving quite a bit of money. Chris is doing really good because he usually buys lunch about 3x/week. I’ll let you know specifics & my full summary at the conclusion of the challenge :)
I’ve tried a few more of the Glo Bars and I’m afraid I didn’t eat them all soon enough. There isn’t an expiration date, but I wouldn’t leave them out longer than a month, and either place them in the fridge or freezer for longer keeping. I should have realized this :( When I took a bite into the Classic flavor again, it just tasted off and I was so bummed. But, I did try the Present flavor and it tasted really great! All the warm spices had more pronounced flavor than the first one I sampled. I can say though that the texture of these bars is superb. Nice and formed, crunchy yet airy, not too sweet and full of great ingredients. Sure looks tasty . . .
The only other thing is most of the time when I have a bar it’s for a snack. These bars mostly have calorie counts in the range of 200 or more. I wish there was a mini version since I have a hard time just eating half :)
I also ran my second 5k race this morning!! It was for the Chefs For Kids Program at my work (UNCE). I’ve been trying to run more, and it’s slowly but surely getting somewhat easier.
Last night for dinner I had some leftover Polenta Mushroom Casserole topped with spinach, an egg and micro’ed egg white. Such an easy and cheap dish to make! mmm
The race started bright and early at 7am! Thank goodness the weather is decent here, or I would have been a frozen popsicle. I started out with a sprouted cinnamon raisin bagel with 1 tbsp peanut butter and jam, a micro’ed egg white + water.
Here’s some shots of the race . . .
Stretching . . .
Warming up . . . I also ran down the course a bit. It really helps to get the lungs going before, since I don’t do well with the cold air.
Waiting . . .
And we’re off!
There was even a Chef running!!
I ended up finishing it in 27:57 which was a bit better than my first 5k at 28:36. Very slow, but progress!
Had to bring some coconut water for afterwards :)
Of course they had tons of goodies to eat! I had 3 glasses of water and 1/2 a blueberry muffin.
Can you believe I placed 2nd in my age group?! Must have not been very many in my age group lol
When I got home I made a bowl of oatmeal to warm up and then I made a smoothie with the immersion blender, and 1/2 grilled cheese on GH Dakota for lunch.
This one had a scoop of whey, NF milk, chia seeds, 1/4 banana, spinach and frozen blueberries.
Most of the day has been spent working on the site, hopefully it will be ready next week! I should get some more studying/research done this weekend and other boring house chores, maybe a bike ride? :) I’m thinking spaghetti squash is on the menu tonight, just haven’t quite figured out what I want to do with it . . .
Other menu items will include:
- lasagna rolls
- kabocha & black bean burgers
- crock-pot roasted chicken with pesto veggies & potatoes
Hope you all are having a nice long weekend if this is your time off!
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Whew! I’ve been trying to work on designing the new template for many hours today and I think my head is about ready to explode!!! I first got a theme template from a site called VivaThemes and I was not impressed at all. I liked the overall look of the theme, but I also spent many hours to find it was not user-friendly, customizable and the customer service was terrible. Even worse I couldn’t get a refund, which is a load of crap. I would not recommend, but I won’t rant on about that . . .
I did find a new theme that is much more user friendly and I’ve been spending more time trying to figure it out. While I will have to eventually code certain things, it just seems better so I guess it’s worth it. ugh!!!
Hopefully I can get it looking somewhat presentable soon, yay!
Yesterday our Red Rock ride was a blast! Even though I was born and raised in Las Vegas and have been to Red Rock thousands of times, I’ve never cycled up there before. Even though the temperature wasn’t too bad, it was pretty chilly coming down those hills! brrr my blood couldn’t get flowing and my muscles wouldn’t work up the hills, c’mon legs work!
It was a lot of fun either way and we met some other fellow cyclists that were really nice and live near us too :)
The ride started at Great Harvest in Summerlin, but first I wanted to have breakfast at home since I wasn’t sure what they would be serving. The night before I made a quick batch of muesli, oh boy I was so excited for breakfast in the am!
I love the little chunks of dates and nuts in the mix.
This overnight mix contained (per serving):
- 1/4 cup muesli + 2 tbsp regular oats
- 3 oz vanilla yogurt (about 1/4 cup)
- 1/4 cup NF milk
- 1/2 banana
- 1 tsp chia seeds
When we got up and ready for breakfast I added some grapes, pistachios, Kashi Warm Cinnamon cereal and a spoonful of pb. Delish! I am going to have to make this more often because it was easy and satisfying.
I got this cute bowl from Anthropologie, love that store! But I have to limit my stops there because it’s dangerous.
When we got to Great Harvest they had french toast, maple syrup and sausage, along with coffee and juice. We grabbed two toasts and a sausage to share. I had about 1 and 1/2 pieces of toast + syrup mmm not too bad, but I’m glad we ate breakfast before :)
I didn’t really like riding right next to cars whizzing by at 60mph or inhaling the exhaust fumes at times, but the views were absolutely gorgeous! The pictures don’t do it justice. There’s me at the back. The hills killed me since I couldn’t get my legs to work in the cold. As the incline increased, I would fall behind lol
Wanna grab a wheel? That’s ‘cyclist speak’ for getting really close to someone’s back wheel and drafting. It does actually help keep the pace.
Even though it was pretty chilly going down the hills, it’s amazing to me that here in Vegas we can be outdoors in shorts and a t-shirt in January!
After the ride I had a Post Workout Glo Bar with 11g of protein! I don’t know if I’ve had it too long, but it was kind of stale & didn’t have too much flavor but I liked the texture.
My muscles and tummy thanked me and I do like the nutritional profile :) I’m still making my way sampling the others and will review them in the near future.
I made some spruced up Annie’s mac for lunch after we got home. Boy I was hungry because I ate almost 2 bowls and then felt ready for dinner! Instead I drank some water and had a plain coconut water which satisfied me at least for awhile.
Chris and I couldn’t really decide what to make for dinner even though I just went grocery shopping Friday (doh!). We didn’t really ‘feel’ like anything, but when I mentioned possibly having a big fat burger that was all we could think about! So, we hoped in the car and picked up some burger ingredients, along with a movie called ‘The Goods’. It was stupid but pretty darn funny :)
I haven’t had a burger in ages, but it was just what we were craving mmm That’s a slice of Great Harvest Dakota under the burger that we had to purchase before the ride. I think Dakota is my favorite GH bread!
I also found these Vit D fortified mushrooms. Isn’t that cool?! They basically expose the mushrooms to UV light, detailed here.
I also made some ‘chips’ on the side, courtesy of Kath :) Have you made these before? They had the best texture and were really fun to eat. We kind of burned them though, but most were still were salvageable. I sprinkled mine with salt, garlic powder and parmesan before baking at 375 F for 18 min (at 15 they didn’t look toasty, but at 18 they got a bit too burnt, so I would recommend 16 minutes).
And we couldn’t pass up this at the store! I don’t think I can be let loose in any type of grocery store really. We went in for a few items and went to the check out with our hands full! I even found a kabocha and spaghetti squash while looking for mushrooms and about shrieked with glee when I saw them!
Dreyer’s 1/2 fat mint cookie crunch + movie = :)
Much more time is needed to figure out this new theme, so I may be MIA for a little bit but will return! Classes also start tomorrow, ugh. I am taking Statistics (pray for me!) and an Independent Study. I hope to do an internship with a corporate wellness program here, but have to get things straightened out with my work schedule first : / And I need to make big strides on the thesis. Sometimes I just wish I had a clone to get everything done, right?
Thank you so much for all your sports nutrition suggestions, I think those are great topics to talk about in the future.
Have a wonderful week!
Are you familiar with CSS? Did you design your own blog or get outside help? Any suggestions are much appreciated!