Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Silver Lining

Breakfast yesterday was a hot bowl of oatmeal, as usual, topped with strawberries, bananas, chia seeds and cinnamon; while Kai had her standard bowl of Multigrain Os and Kix with a side of banana and a hard boiled egg.  Our breakfast has become pretty routine, which even though I prefer a bit more variety, it does helps us stay on time, so for now I'm just going to go with it.

After snacking on some frozen grapes we went on a walk before for lunch.  I wanted to finish off the black bean & corn salsa so I made myself a bowl of "Salsa Salad".

Massaged kale, spinach, BB&C Salsa, Tomato Salsa, Avocado, Chopped Bells and Nutritional Yeast

A little later we snacked on an Apple & Banana drizzled with chocolate.

Then came dinner.  Same time every day.  I knew it was coming.  And yet I had no idea what to make.  Don't you just hate that?  You're hungry but nothing sounds good - or if it does sound good you don't have the time/ingredients to make it.  In the end I decided to bake some tofu.  I drained, pressed & sliced it, then made up a marinade.  Popped it into the oven at 425° and bake for 20-30 minutes (ok, I started at 450° but they were starting to burn).
Slice, slice, slice

Marinade:  2 T Miso, Juice of 1 Lime, 2 T Tamari, + Couple shakes of Liquid Smoke

Dip the slices into the marinade and bake.

In the end I found these editable but not as good as I would have liked.  The combo of the Miso & Tamari was too salty for my tastes.  Ehh, you can't win them all. :)
Now the side was DELICIOUS.  Roasted Broccoli, Cauliflower & Potatoes.  I wish I had made more!  A lot more!!

Frozen broccoli & cauliflower + a chopped potato with a spray of EVOO &
a sprinkle of "Savory" seasoning I found in our pantry.  Roasted in the toaster oven at 475

Final dinner was a wrap with spinach tomato & tofu + roasted veggies + cuke

Now, if you were paying attention then I'm sure, based on the title of this post, your expecting a silver lining to the salty eatable-but-not-wowing tofu.   Here it is...

It's so tasty cold!  Yep, around 9 last night I was nosing around the fridge and decided to eat 1/2 a slice while I picked what I was really going to eat (we all do that right?  Snack on something while deciding what to snack on...In the end I chose an apple)  I was shocked at how good it was! 

So there you have it.  Dinner's trash became Snack's treasure. :D

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Dessert First

Lunch today started with dessert.  Kai wanted strawberry ice cream and nothing else!  So rather than fight it we just whipped some up.  Sometime you HAVE to give into your cravings. :)

Banana Soft-Serve
frozen bananas
add-ins of choice

Toss it all together & blend until smooth.
That's it.  Soft-serve in minutes. :D

Strawberry Spinach Soft Serve (with chia seeds thrown in for good measure)


Caught a Taste Test!

But what is a Yin without a Yang?  What is Dark without the Light?
What is Dessert without a meal?

So we had to have a meal...

And it had to be Kid-helper friendly.  After all, she already had her apron on. :)

Oh, and it had to be quick so the ice cream didn't melt.

Tuna Salad it was!  All you do is drain, mix & serve.  Perfect! 

Tuna Salad
1 can of Tuna - drained
approx 2 T Greek Yogurt
small squirt of Dijon Mustard
1/4 Avocado

Mix it all together and serve in your favorite manner.

mix, mix, mix

Kai's Plate:  Carrots & Ice Cream + tuna salad, tomatoes, humus

My Bowl:  Spinach, Tuna Salad, tomatoes, carrots & sprouts + Ice Cream
While enjoying lunch the mail arrived.  In it was the zoo magazine we get for being members.  After seeing a poster of the new baby elephant we decided a quick trip to the zoo was in order.  I threw a drink in my purse for Kai (I can't afford to keep buying her drinks at the zoo.  A girl could go broke doing that!) and we were off to visit the new baby elephant.  But first we saw...

Just in time for Seal/Sea Lion Chat.

Nice day for laying out in the sun.

Anyone seen Pumbaa?

No snake can catch my girl!

Graffias gotta eat too.

Baby needs a drink! lol!

I took a pic of the Rhinos but the big draw here is the bouncy bridge to get to the rhinos. :)

Kai raced a Cheeta (see her behind the grass?)

It's easy to win when your competition's asleep.

For some reason this bird kept giving us the stink eye

Small enough to be considered the "baby". :D

Are you achin', for some bacon?  You can be a big pig too! 

Got to pet the Kangal

And for the next 30 minutes we pet the sharks!  This is easily Kai's favorite activity at the zoo.

Dinner was Quinoa Burgers from Veggie Burgers Every Which Way but I added shredded carrots and curry powder to it. :)

It's basically a mix of quinoa, white & green onion, flour, egg (I used flax seed + water), carrots, garlic & curry powder pattied up and baked.

Black Bean & Corn Salsa mixed with Tomato Salsa & chips
Yogurt with strawberries, California mix veggies & Quinoa Burger.
After dinner we all went on a walk. 

Can you tell we're enjoying the cooler weather? 

Monday, August 29, 2011

What Happened?!?

Hi all, did you miss me???  Where you wondering where I was all weekend?  Were you terribly worried I might have gone on a walk with -J and disappeared into the corn

Well before you panic and call someone for help let me reassure you that I'm ok.  :)

This weekend my daughter had, what I'm diagnosing as, a mild case of Croup.  Friday and Saturday night I spent on the couch with her, while she coughed & coughed.  It helped to keep her sitting up and it helped to take her outside in the cool air.  Fortunately she seems to be over it for the most part.  She slept through the night last night which is a blessing since today is Picture Day at school.  A good night's sleep, a good breakfast (Multigrain O's & Kix cereal with raisins & bananas + a hard boiled egg), and a bit of girly "make-up" and she's totally ready for her close-up.  :)  

So while today is all happy-bouncy-cheery, this weekend I was dragging.   Between the coughing, sitting up and my limbs falling asleep under Kai when she did sleep, I just wasn't keeping up.  I thought to take pictures of food AFTER I ate it and getting onto the computer to blog was just not happening. :(

So here's a quick-ish weekend recap....

Friday's Breakfast was some delicious waffles...

I had planned a chocolate-nutbutter topping but we had mango & kiwi and I just couldn't pass up the fresh fruit.  Don't worry though.  I ate PLENTY of almond butter this weekend.  I ate it by the spoon finger full! (I was a snacking fool this weekend!)

After school we went on a picnic with Grammy & Grandpa.  G&G used to babysit Kai 2 days a week so I could get caught up on work.  Now that she's in school they don't get to see her very often so we planned a fun outing at Eagle Creek Park which included this spread... 

Fresh Veggies & Fruit (this was GONE by the time we left - I may have had a hand in all the consumption)
+ tomato, basil & motz. salad + beet & feta salad + broccoli, kale, edamame & cous-cous
& a MacDuff cameo

Running off some energy!
Friday night we went to Q'doba for dinner.  I had the pick 2 with the naked taco salad (black bean & rice) and 2 tacos (black bean & rice).  We could see the menu from where we sat and I think next time I'm getting a naked roasted veggie burrito.  The hub's LOVES their burritos but I can't stand that sticky tortilla wrap. :)

This weekend also included smoothies...

Looks so pretty!

Looks so blah, but tastes AMAZING!
I also stopped by Farmer's Market and bought 2 boxes of over ripened bananas for a total of $6.  I filled 5 (!) cookie sheets with bananas, flash froze them and then bagged them into 11 freezer bags!!  I should be set on frozen banana's for a while.
I'm ready for banana soft serve!!

My FAVORITE meal of the weekend was the home made tomato soup.  This weekend was really all about the tomatoes.  I had it in my head I wanted soup so I bought a box of over ripened at the F.M.  Then I picked a few out of my garden.  Then my mother-in-law gave me a bag full.  Now let me be clear, I am in no way complaining.  I LOVE tomatoes!  I don't understand those weirdos perfectly sane people who don't like tomatoes.  They're so delicious in so many different ways!  

Tomato & Basil Salad - mix chopped tomatoes, fresh chopped basil, some motz. cheese and a little Balsamic Vinegar.  Tasty!

Salsa - chopped onion, hot pepper, tomatoes & cilantro.  Tasty!

Tomato Pizza Cup - cut the top off a tomato and squirt the loose seeds out.  Stuff with some onion, green pepper & fresh chopped basil, drizzle with EVOO then top with white cheese & bake at 400° for about 20 minutes then broil to brown the cheese.  Tasty!

Tomato Soup
1/2 onion
1 t minced garlic
4 C chopped tomato
2 T butter
2 T Spelt Flour (or your favorite flour)
Salt & pepper to taste

On medium heat Saute onion & garlic until clear.
Add tomatoes & bring to boil.  Turn the heat down & let simmer for about 20 minutes.
Use an immersion blender to smooth it out.

In a separate sauce pan on medium heat melt butter & add flour.  Cook for about 1 minute, stirring then pour into your tomato soup and whisk.  Add salt & pepper to taste.  Tasty!

Next time I'm going to saute some bell peppers into the mix. :)

Saute onions & garlic then add 4 C of tomatoes

Bring to a boil & simmer

Blend until smooth

Served with Nutritional Yeast & Grilled Cheese

Saturday night we also had nachos with freshly made tomato salsa, black bean & corn salsa, and a whole assortment of toppings.  Then we were off for some Fro-Yo.  One of our friends hadn't been yet and we HAD to include him in the fun.   After all that fun I had a Fantasy Football Draft to attend.  I wound up with first pick.  YUCK!  It was way too much pressure.  I took A. Peterson and I'm still not sure if it was a good choice.  Plus I wound up with San Diego's QB who's not the nicest person and I want to like my players.  I may have to trade him... hmmmm  :)

Sunday morning was more of the same.  I ate a LOT of left overs and snack, snack, snacked.  Part of dinner was this salad.  Tasty!  :)

We also worked on cleaning up the yard.  I weeded and look who I found....
Hello Mr. Monarch
Hopefully he/she wasn't too freaked out by the 2 giants (aka me and Kai) watching it crawl around.  I move it to a safer spot in our neighbor's bush which is covered in vines I thought looked like they'd be tasty to a caterpillar.

At some point over the weekend we watched Red Riding Hood.  I was surprised that I liked it as much as I did.  I wasn't sure who the wolf was going to be.   AND I finished 3 books (they were short).  The between the numbers books from Janet Evanovich's Plum novels.  They were a little more sci-fi-y than the actual number books (ok, a LOT more sci-fi-y) but I'm glad I read them.  :)

Friday, August 26, 2011

Beets & Pizzas

For lunch yesterday I wanted to use my beets.  They've been in the veggie draw for a long time and while beets can last a good long while, I didn't want to push my luck...and I HATE having to throw out food. 

So Plan #1 was to roast the beets and then decide what to do with them from there:

Clean Beets and a drizzle of EVOO

All wrapped up & into the oven for about an hour

Unwrapped and cooling

The skin slides right off under a bit of running water

Chopped up and read to eat.

Now that I had beets I needed to figure out what to do with them...

I'm a salad whore.  I admit it.  I'll take a salad morning, noon & night.  Throw a little quinoa in there for protein and I'm a happy camper.
A bit of orange juice marinating with the beats

Mixed with some Quinoa and added to a bed of spinach + feta &  Humus

Kai on the other hand, loves herself a jelly sandwich.  But I refuse to slap jelly on bread and let it go.  If that's going to be the main thing she eats then we're going to bump up the nutrition.  And the best part?  I don't have to be sneaky.  She LOVES to help sprinkle some nutritional yeast & flax seed on there before we spread the jelly. 

Pull out the dino bread cutters

Before spreading anything make sure the dinos are kissing.
If you try to do this when they're facing the same direction they're not going to sandwich together properly.
I know, It seems obvious now but we've all had our moments. lol!

Jelly Dino, Beet Salad & Humus

For Dessert:  Yogurt with magno, chia & sprouts
OK - Kai did not want this.  She wanted watermelon but I didn't take a picture of the watermelon.  :)

Now how do you top that colorful of a lunch??  Pizza!!

Pizza can top just about anything!

I had some dough in the freezer so I defrosted it in the fridge during the day.  That's right, I knew in the morning that we'd be having pizza for dinner.  Do you know how hard it is to concentrate when you know you're going to have pizza later?  

You probably do.  After all, it's pizza! 


Dough: Makes Enough for 4 pizzas & 2 small dessert pizzas - I freeze half

1 T Raw Honey
1 C Water Warm Water
1 pkg Yeast (14 oz)

Total of 3 Cups Flour (I use a mix of spelt, WW, white, oat, etc...  What ever I happen to have.  If you're using whole wheat be sure to use some white so that it's not too heavy)
1 t salt
1/4 C EVOO

Dissolve the honey in the water then stir in the yeast so that the water is cloudy.  Let sit in a dark warm spot for about 5 minutes so that a layer of foam forms.

Mix everything together using the flat beater in a mixer (I have a Kitchen Aid).  Once it's all mixed use your kneading blade to kneed it all together (or kneed by hand).  If after a while, it's still sticky, add some flour.  You want it to be smooth and elastic.  Shape the dough into a ball.

Spray a bowl with some EVOO and put the dough ball in.  Turn to coat (you don't want the dough to get dry while it rises).  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit for 45 minutes to 1.5 hours - until it doubles in bulk.  Punch it down and get ready to make pizza.

At this point I take 1/2 of it and put it in a freezer bag.  Pop it in the freezer for the next time you want to make pizza.

Making Pizza:
Put your pizza stone in the oven & Pre-heat the oven to 500°.

Roll out your pizza dough.  I divide it into 3 mini balls - 2 larger and 1 smaller.
To roll it out I place it between 2 sheets of parchment paper - it makes it 1000-times easier!

Spread some EVOO & minced garlic on top.  Then top away.  MY favorite is roasted veggies.  The Hubs likes meat, pepper & cheese.

Add some Italian seasoning & fresh basil.

Then bake for about 5-10 minutes.  I make 1 pizza at a time.  While one bakes I make up the next.  :)

Roll out your dough.
TIP:  roll it between 2 sheets of parchment paper and you won't have any sticking issues.

The Manly Pizza:   EVOO, Tomato paste, minced garlic, roasted tomatoes, pepperoni, jalapeno peppers & cheese

The Girly Pizza: EVOO, Tomato paste, minced garlic, roasted veggies & a bit of cheese

Pizza's are done dude!

Little Dessert:  coconut oil, carob powder, mini marshmallows


Remember how I said almost nothing can top pizza?  Well there's one thing that can...


My name is Emily and I'm a Fro-Yo addict....
Chocolate, Cheesecake & Espresso Fro-Yo
+ cherries, blueberries, raspberrys, black berries, mango, and cookie dough.