Thursday, December 29, 2011

Green Goodness

Even though we still have one more holiday to go doesn't mean we can't get our diets back to normal. I am back drinking green smoothies again. Thankfully. They make me feel so great and energetic. I think I put a good balance of greens and fruit. It looks funny to some people because of the colour but once they taste it, its over. They have fruit in them to make them all sweet and delish. But are chalked full of green veggie goodness. You'll get lots of iron, protein, calcium, folic acid and other vits like vit C and such. Its how I start my day, instead of with tea or coffee or a doughnut. Ick. (ps I do drink coffee and tea a couple times a week, or when I need/want it).

Last night was just me and I wanted to eat something light, healthy but delicious of course. I had some leftover pasta sauce, but there was no way I was making pasta. I opted to make the biggest wok of steamed greens I've ever made. Well maybe. I used pea shoot leaves, spinach, kale, broccoli, snap peas and sui choy. I think that's all of em.....
I tossed all these freshly chopped and washed greens into a HUGE wok with no water, just whatever they have in them and from washing. Covered and steamed for about 5-10 minutes, tossing when I remembered. When done, I tossed in some freshly squeezed lemon juice, gomashio, and a dash of soy sauce. 
Ready for me to devour

Plain quinoa, pan fried tofu and homemade veggie pasta sauce
Just plain quinoa, no flavourings, homemade pasta sauce which you can find here and pan fried tofu. Nuttin fancy. BUT I made it fancy by drizzling BLACK TRUFFLE OIL on top! Yah I did!

Christmas morning tofu scramble
Tofu scramble I made for the fam on xmas morning. Zucchini, mushroom, onion, garlic, turmeric, Italian seasoning, splash of soy sauce and salt and pepper. Sided with real potato hashbrowns and a Mack's Flax piece of toast. 

The feast that my uncle and I prepared vegan and non
Look at all that food. We seriously could not eat it all. Lol

Tonight I'm making Kevin a Christmas dinner because he didn't get one. Poor guy. :( and I invited a couple other lovely friends over too! And Christmas continues! Lol Tofurkey for everyone!




Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas Hang Over

Well, Christmas has come and gone. We're all a little heavier and have a few more trinkets than we did a couple days ago. Hopefully every one's Christmas was relaxing and full of food. Mine was, but also not without some drama. There always is in my family. But I didn't let that stop me from enjoying my time.

Christmas Eve I spent at my Aunt and Uncle's place in Coquitlam. I went over early to help my uncle cook as my aunt was working. We had a fun time cooking away together. I made my vegan food, he made the rest. I made a Tofurkey, mashed potato and turnips, stuffing, roasted brussel sprouts and carrots in maple syrup, and the usual suspects like gravy and corn. 

My Stuffing recipe:

1 pkg squirrely or mack's flax bread, cubed
Veggie stock, about 2 cups
1 cup dried cranberries
4 celery stalks, diced small
3 tsp sage
4 tbsp thyme
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
salt and pepper
1 tsp Earth Balance

Saute the onions, celery and garlic with a tsp of Earth Balance until fragrant and translucent.  Add the bread and enough veggie stock to coat and we the bread. Add the spices and continue to fold for 5 minutes. Add more veggie stock if needed. Cook for another 5 minutes. Put stuffing into a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or serve immediately if you can't wait. 

December 25th - Grannie's

December 25th - Grannies

December 25th - Grannie's
I forgot the pics of my December 24th dinner, that table was crazy! SO much food. Wow. I basically made the same food for both, except that on the 24th, there was double of everything. They don't really understand my whole veganism thing as well as my dad's side does. Which is weird for me since I'm so close to them.  They don't realize that if I made mashed potatoes with my vegan margarine and almond milk that they wouldn't be able to tell. Its not really a big deal for me, as I cook anyways but maybe next year I can show them that if I made all the sides vegan, they wouldn't even notice. 

At my Grannie's I cook everything except for the turkey, and the turkey gravy of course. I added a couple twists this year by doing the carrots and brussel sprouts together and tossing in some almonds. I also roasted an acorn squash and sprinkled some cinnamon on it. We were supposed to have some extra guests but they bailed on us. Not happy about it at all. We bought all the food, I cooked all day and they didn't show up. Oh well, life goes on. I didn't let that ruin my day. 
We have these every year. And we wear the crowns.

My vegan plate!
My aunt bought my cousin Josh and his gf a onsie. Remember those things? The jumpers with the boots attached? lol We were all so jealous I think everyone wants to get one now. 

Ho Ho Homies

I'm wearing sunglasses because I had laser eye surgery on Friday! BAM! Best thing I've done. SO awesome. Its kinda surreal though. The day of the surgery was brutally uncomfortable. Not painful. But your eyes are watery something mad. So I slept. When I woke up it was much better and not too light sensitive. My friend Jimmy came by to keep me company for a bit and bring me a present!!! A portable hard drive with 120 gbs of music!! Woah! I'm gonna be busy for a while. Lol plus some nice soaps. The cucumber one is delish. lol

When I woke up the next morning I reached for my glasses as I've done for like 17 years of my life before I realized that I could SEE!!!! Its just amazing. Its like magic. They are a little dry and at times slightly blurry, but it goes away and in comparison to my eye sight before, this is nothing. There are some red marks on my eye balls, that my mom says makes me look like I'm into.......well asphyxiation. lol Which I'm not. Haha. But now I know for sure where my twisted mind came from. HAHA ;)

Hope ya'll had a great holiday. Its back to work for me but its good to get back into a routine. Gotta stop the eating. NO more eating. Ever. LOL

On to New Years!




Friday, December 23, 2011

Mushroom Madness

SO I finally got some Christmas spirit. I've had almost nil this year, and last. A women that I work with got some of us ladies a little Christmas present!!! SO thoughtful. It really was. She knows that I'm such a foodie, and a MAJAH lova of truffle she got me a bottle of black truffle oil!!! Ahhh, you should have seen my face. OMG. So excited! I immediately changed up the game plan of what I was going to cook that night, and made it something I could drizzle this delectable oil on. If you haven't had it before, you MUST try it. Its da bomb!

I opted for a nice pilaf with roasted portobello mushrooms and a kale salad. Yummerly.

Brown Rice Pilaf
2 cups dry brown rice, cooked according to package
2 carrots
2 handfuls spinach
3 garlic cloves
1 small onion
2 tsp chili garlic sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup water
1 tsp Vegeta (or dry Veggie stock)

1. Pulse the carrots, spinach and garlic in the food processor.
2. Use 2 tsp of grapeseed oil and wok fry the onions until translucent (about 5 minutes). 
3. Add veggies and cook for another 5 minutes, adding a 1/4 cup of water if they start to stick.
4. Add the rice and seasoning, including the vegeta. Cook until heated through. Season to taste if more is needed.

So yummy. I brushed a little grapeseed oil mixed with sea salt and garlic powder on the mushrooms after cleaning out the bottom and cutting the stem off. Then I roasted them in the oven at 375 for 15 minutes.

For the kale salad, I wanted to make the one by Ani Phyo again, the one I made here but No Frills didn't have any sprouts. FAIL. So I just didnt' use any. So basically the same, minus one ingredient. Still awesome though. It was all the same ingredients, just minus the sprouts.

I'm just about off to go get Laser Eye Surgery! Yah! SOOOOOOooooo excited! I'm not nervous at all. Maybe I will be once they jack my eyes open and point a laser, but so far I'm not. Thankfully they give you a relaxant to calm those nerves. You think I can take a couple for the road? I kid I kid....well. lol

Then its Christmas! Got lots of cooking to do and a lot more eating. And since I've had to wear my glasses all week, I've barely made it to the gym. I know I know, it sounds like just an excuse. But if you know me at all, I ALWAYS go to the gym. I go about 6 days a week, 5 on a bad week, so it must be pretty bad to make me not go. Running with glasses is just not comfortable at all. Bouncing around and sliding off my face. Grrrrr. I did make it there last night though, and I'm pretty sore. I will be back at it a couple days after the surgery. I can't wear eye make up for like a week. Jeez, thank god I'm pretty, lol. I'll wear some though, so don't fret. Ha. 

Merry Christmas everyone!!! Hope everyone has a kick ass holiday. And that you eat yourself into a little food coma like me. Nothing better than stuffing yourself then topping it off with a bottle of wine. Yah, I said bottle. 




Thursday, December 22, 2011

Italian Stallion Pasta Sauce

I made a big pot of pasta sauce recently, HUGE in fact. I don't eat pasta, like ever, but recently went to an Italian restaurant for my works Christmas party so I had a hankering. I didn't follow a recipe and I didn't write it down. BUT I remember it mostly.

Italian Stallion Pasta Sauce

8 tomatoes, half diced, half blended
2 roma tomatoes, diced
1 large onion
2 garlic bulbs, roasted
3 small zucchini, diced small
4 celery, diced small
1 handful fresh basil
3 tsp dried basil
2 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
4 tsp sea salt
1 tsp pepper
1 small can tomato paste

1. I washed, chopped and blended 4 of the tomatoes with 4 ladles of water. I put the fresh basil in too.
2. Add everything except the blended tomatoes, spices and tomato paste to a big pot and cook on medium heat for 10 minutes. Add a ladle of water if needed to prevent sticking.
3. Add the remaining ingredients and cook for 1 hour at a simmer.
4. Season with more spices if needed and serve with your favorite pasta.

I served mine with linguine which was on top of some steamed greens. I sauteed kale and pea shoot leaves with garlic, ginger, lemon and sea salt. YUM

A light and refreshing meal that is quite filling. Very Mediterranean tasting.

This recipe made boats loads of pasta sauce. Well boat loads for me because I live alone. So I froze it. Love that. My freezer is full of containers of soups, chili's, stews and such. Makes for easy lunches.




Lazy bones: Whole Foods review

I feel like December has been a whirlwind of parties, drinks, Christmas prep, concerts, friends, family, gym time and oh yah work. lol I dont' know how I've managed to cram everything in. ; ) I decided one night to just pick up some take out or something I could just throw in the oven and I hopped into bed at 6:30pm to eat my dinner and watch TV. What a glorious thing it is to just veg out like that. Lay like broccoli. Be still like vegetables. How vegan of me and Julia Roberts. (Pretty Woman, if you don't remember).

SO GOOD!!! Ps I saved half for the next day. lol

Light, simple, yum. Needed hot sauce though.

Kale salad from Whole Foods with Tahini Dressing!!! loves

I've had that kale salad a few times and REALLY want to know how to make that dressing. Its so damn tasty. I saved the tag so I at least have the ingredients, now for the amounts. I shall figure it out. This I vow to you. 

So I still had the convenience of take out but the healthiness that I love. 




Recipe Review: Ani Phyo; Kale, Avocado and Sprout Salad

I picked up one of Ani Phyo's books in the early summer. She is a Eco Sylist and Organic Food author based out of LA. She is a raw foodist. I really think there is something to a raw food diet. I think its extremely healthy, but I don't think I could do it 100%. But incorporating more raw food is not hard at all. I drink a green smoothie and have a big salad every day. Its a good start but there are definitely way cooler recipes for raw foods. I need to start making things from one of her books.

SOOO, that said, I looked on her website and found a recipe that she likes to make while she's traveling because its really easy to make, requires little ingredients or equipment. 

1/2 bunch kale, de-stem, and tear leaves into bite size pieces
1 avocado
1 lemon's juice
1 container sprouts, any kind

In a large mixing bowl, place kale and massage with avocado. Squeeze lemon juice, and massage.  Add sprouts and salt, if using. Massage and toss to mix well.
Ready to go.

Massage that kale Baby!
 The only change that I made to the dish was that I added a couple teaspoons of hemp seeds. This salad was super quick and easy to make with maximum flavour and satisfaction. The fat in the avocado did it I guess and lemon. Lemon is an amazing fruit. I use it in my smoothies, stir fries, soups and I drink it with hot water in the morning.


There's so much good stuff in this salad. Kale and sprouts have a great amount of protein in them. SO its a powerhouse salad. I'm actually going to make this again tonight. Can't wait.




Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Restaurant Review: The Wallflower Modern Diner

I did a lot of venturing out of downtown this weekend. I also check out The Wallflower again. I was surprised to see that they have revamped their menu. And for me, its for the better.  They added some more vegan breakfast items, one of which I was particularly stoked to try. It was a tough decision, let me tell you, but I chose the Vegan Breakfast Poutine!!! Yah, you read that right, I ordered the breakfast POUTINE. I'm extremely healthy but I like to eat junk too. LOL

It has big chunks of delish potatoes, vegan breakfast wieners, veggie gravy and daiya mozzarella. Yup. Then I topped it with Frank's Red Hot and a side of dry, multi grain toast. Mmmmmmm

I've only been to the Wallflower twice now, both for breaky. BUT this is my fave. Yah its totally unhealthy and not really a breakfast item, but I'm down. Its flavourful and really goes with the gluttony that is December.  Next time I'm going to try the vegan benny. Its been AGES since I've had a benny. Excuse me while I wipe drool from my chin.

My good pals, Dave and Natasha, came in from Victoria for the Watch the Throne concert, so of course we went to Shabusen for lunch. AYCE is such a mind game. You really try to prove them, it, I dunno who I'm trying to prove what to but I eat a lot. Too much. I didn't have dinner that evening actually. Not till 1am actually. LOL

So hard Dave. lol
There are better pics of us but I had to use that one cuz of Dave, LOL 

We had craptastic seats BUT it didn't matter. I just needed to be there. And I got to go with EXACTLY who I wanted to go with. Jay Z is Dave's fave and I'm pretty sure he's pretty high up there for Natasha. Jay Z and Kanye are pretty neck and neck for me, but Jay Z might win because he's adopted a "partial" vegan diet recently. LOL WTF does partial mean Jigga? Lol

Wallflower Modern Diner on Urbanspoon




Restaurant Review: 3G Vegetarian

This weekend I had the pleasure of going to 3G Vegetarian Restaurant with Kevin. We don't venture out of the downtown core very often, so I thought it was high time that we did. Especially since there are so many great restaurants to try.

3G is a vegan Chinese restaurant. A lot of people are shocked when I tell them I have been to a vegan Chinese place but it is actually quite logical. Ethnic cuisine and especially Asian cuisine is the easiest to eat vegan or vegetarian. Think about it, veggie sushi, gommae, miso soup (mostly), stir fry, tofu, veggies galore, chickpea curry....I can't even list all the options. Asians are also very smart and crafty; there are a ton of fake meats out there. AND they love their mushrooms. Not to say there isn't a lot of meat, but there are always tons of veggies.

Hot and Sour Soup

Best VEGAN hot and sour soup I've ever had. This was much more like the old soup I used to know and love. Usually the vegan versions are too watery, its supposed to be just a little thicker.
Fried vegetables and pork pieces Shanghai style

Fried noodles with bamboo mushrooms and mixed vegetables
My fave dish was the "fried vegetables and pork pieces Shanghai style".  It was SUPER tasty and saucy. The first bite of the "pork" pieces was a little weird, but they are really yummy. Not the same consistency as meat at all but if you've ever had fish cakes before then you'll like it. Its like a much firmer tofu I guess. All the dishes were really good though, and it wasn't the greasy that most people expect with Chinese food. 

Most Chinese restaurants lack in atmosphere and although this one does in many respects, it had this cool tree painted on either side and was quite colourful. The owners were really sweet and friendly. I would definitely go back.....hopefully soon.

3G Vegetarian Restaurant on Urbanspoon




Monday, December 19, 2011

Restaurant review: Loving Hut Food Truck

I had the pleasure of trying out the Loving Hut Food Truck that located on the corner of Pacific and Davie, by the Roundhouse. I've been dying to try it since it opened but whenever I'm in Yaletown its closed. The Loving Hut is 100% Vegan and let me tell you, 100% D-Lish! I tried the Crispy Chick'N Burger. It was really hard to choose, the menu looks great. The burger is a Gardein Chick'N patty with avocado, lettuce, tomato, red onion, and topped with house made apricot-jalapeno relish and a chipotle mayo. 

It was saucy, messy and I had it all over my face. LOL and I didn't care who saw it! ha. Sorry the pictures are blurry but I forgot my camera and only had my Blackberry. BUT I am now the proud owner of an iphone 4s! YAH!! I'm just like everyone else now! yah for conformity. LOL

OH yah!

Check it out!!

The staff are really friendly and will help you with the menu. My problem wasn't determining what things were, it was more of making a decision. He suggested I start with the crispy chick'n. He was right! Can't wait to go back and try something else. 

ALSO, I went to Prince on Friday night. WOW. He is truly talented. It was all just about his band and the music. SO much fun. I will point out though, that I've never seen so many ear plugs before. The older folk sure love them. ;)

We had 14th row on the floor!!! They were real nazi's about picture taking at this concert, so I wasn't able to snap very many. I had to be very ninja about it. But I'm Japanese, so ninja-ing comes as second nature to me. HA. 

I also went to Jay Z and Kanye on Sunday. It was the last show for the Watch the Throne tour. MIND BLOWN. BEST concert I've ever been too. I'll show you some pictures tomorrow. Along with some other fun stuff I did this weekend. :)

Loving Hut Express on Urbanspoon




Friday, December 16, 2011

Restaurant Review: Mangia E Bevi

Last night was my Christmas party for work. We went to Mangia E Bevi, an Italian restaurant in West Vancouver.  I've never had a problem going to a non-vegan restaurant and asking them to prepare me a vegan meal. I've never gotten any attitude, they are always accommodating and its almost always amazing. This was no different. They were wonderful. 

My meal consisted of a mescalin greens salad with a balsamic vinegar dressing. It had no creativity at all and no vegetables in it. Just straight up lettuce and dressing. The dressing was phe-nom though, best balsamic one I've had, but they could have thrown in some cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers or anything really. I didn't take a picture of the salad, because well it was just lettuce. LOL

My next course was a pasta primavera with tons of fresh tomatoes, zucchini and a ton of veggies with a egg-free fresh spaghetti. It was so light tasting and wonderful. The flavour from the veggies was really highlighted in this dish as there was a heavy sauce to mask it.

My next course was a polenta dish made with grilled veggies such as zucchini, peppers and portobello mushrooms with some sort of tomato sauce and drizzled with truffle oil (at my request). I effin LOVE truffle oil. It pretty much brings me to my knees. I need to have this at home. Why don't I you ask? I have absolutely NO idea. Back in my meat eating days, I went to Italian Kitchen for lunch and there lunch spaghetti and meatballs didn't have truffle oil like the dinner option, so I asked for it. This got the server and I talking about our love for truffle oil and she mentioned that she drizzles it on her popcorn!!! HER POPCORN!!! omg, I MUST try this. Doesn't it sound amazing?

Seriously Yum
The dessert was my choice of sorbet. They actually had so many options I could barely make up my mind, nor remember as he was listing them out. I chose the lemon and papaya sorbet. YUMMMM, I usually never eat all the dessert but this I could have licked the bowl. Ha! But I didn't, I swear. 

Lemon and Papaya Sorbet

All in all, it was a great evening. We started off pretty early afternoon at a coworkers house for Champagne. And didn't get home till after 11pm. So getting to work for 8am was a little tough. Nobody has been very talkative today. LOL 

Me and my ladies. :)
The gift EVERYONE got
Well the men got booze. But all guests, staff and their dates got an XMAS gift. How thoughtful. I feel so special. ;) LOLLLL

Now I'm nourishing my body in preparation of the Prince concert tonight and my friend in town from Victoria. So I had a green smoothie for breaky, a lentil burger (no bun) and hangover fries for lunch. I made the lentil burger before, a Thrive recipe.  The next week is gonna be hectic. I'm busy every night till Christmas except Wednesday right now. But the X Factor Finale is that night. PLUS I have to buy/make/assemble Christmas presents. I have bought half so far, thank gawd for the Internet. 

If you haven't got your Christmas shopping done, then I'll probably see you out there this weekend. I don't know how I'm going to get it all done, I've got more friends coming to town Sunday. And pretty much both sat and sun are jammed packed. Eeeek. 

I must of slept funny because my neck and shoulder hurt so bad!!! I've never felt like this. It hurts to look left. Thankfully, a good girl scout always has Ibuprofen in her purse. Lol

Mangia E Bevi on Urbanspoon




Thursday, December 15, 2011

Recipe review: The Kind Diet Risotto with Oyster Mushrooms, Leeks, and Peas

Last night I had the pleasure of cooking for my lovely friend Brooke. We both really love the book The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone so I thought it appropriate to make something from there. I haven't made THAT many recipes from her book so perf! I chose the Risotto with Oyster Mushrooms, Leeks, and Peas as I've never made a risotto from scratch before. I've only made a box one (gasp!). Lol

Risotto with Oyster Mushrooms, Leeks, and Peas
3 tablespoons olive oil
3/4-1 cup oyster mushrooms, or 1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
2 pinches sea salt
1/2 cup thinly sliced leeks
1/2 cup fresh or thawed peas
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4-1 cup onion, chopped
1 cup Arborio rice
1/2 cup mirin or white wine

Bring 5 cups of water just to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from the heat and cover to keep warm.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a skillet.  Add the mushrooms and a pinch of salt and stir until the mushrooms soften.  Add the leeks and a pinch of salt and saute for 1 minutes, or until the leeks soften.  Add some water to the pan, 1 tablespoon at a time if the vegetables become dry or start to stick to the pan.

If you are using fresh peas, blanch them for 1 minutes in a small pot of boiling water, and then add them to the sauteed vegetables.  If using thawed just add them. Remove from heat and set aside. 

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet over m edium heat. Add the garlic and onion and, when the onions begins to sizzle, add a dash of salt. Saute until the onions soften, about 1 to 2 minutes.  Stif in the rice and toast the grains until they are opaque, about 2 to 3 minutes.  Stir in the wine and cook until it has evaporated.  Reduce the heat to medium low and begin add the warm water by ladelfuls, stirring it into the risotto, and adding more liquid only when the previous addition has been absorbed.  After the rice has cooked for 20 minutes, seas to taste with salt.  The total cooking time should be 25 to 30 minutes. The risotto will be creamy, but the rice should retain some firmness.

Add the sauteed vegetable mixture to the risotto and stir together until hot. Serve warm.

Ok, so that's the recipe the way its presented in the book. I, of course, have made some changes, like I always do. The changes are:

1. I did not use oyster mushrooms as they weren't available so I used 4 button mushrooms and 1 portobello.
2. I used an entire leek, except the green part.
3. I added 1 tsp of chili flakes, 1 tsp of garlic powder, 1/2 freshly squeezed lemon and a total of 1.5 tsp salt.
4. Instead of peas, I used edamame (frozen).
5. I used grapeseed oil instead of olive oil.

Steamed Kale and broccoli w/ lemon and Gomashio

This dish turned out amazing. It is so rich and creamy, surprisingly creamy. Even though there isn't butter or cream in it.  I really like this recipe a lot. I served it on top of steamed veggies which I tossed in 1/2 lemon and a tsp of Gomashio. 

PS: Gomashio is a Japanese seasoning of sea salt and sesame seeds. You can check it out here. Its great and a nice way to season food with a good dose of calcium (from the sesame seeds).


I did really enjoy this recipe and making a risotto was not as labour intensive as I initially though. I would change a few things in the prep side to make it a bit easier and way less dishes to wash. I don't know about you but washing dishes isn't my fave thing to do and its certainly not eco friendly to have to wash so many. Not saving any water here folks.

Thank you Kind Diet
Firstly, I would just use warm water, not boiled water. Save one pot. Second (which I did), I would not use one pan for doing the veggies and one for the garlic and onions. I did the veggies, then put them in a bowl to the side. And thirdly, I would make more because we ate it all! There were no leftovers and I was sad. Lol Seriously, it says serves 4 or 5. I guess its assuming you're making something else or you're not a pig like me and Brooke are. I really don't understand how 4 or 5 people could get full off this dish. Next time I will double the recipe so I have some for lunch the next day. There's no way 1 cup of any kind of rice could be enough for 4 to 5 people. You're speaking to an Asian here, we're passionate about our rice. HA

Yummy Yummy Yummy! I'm stoked that my first attempt at risotto went over well. Brookey said it was delish. Next time I'm going to add asparagus and who knows what else. But risotto will be happening again in my house.

I gotta start my Christmas shopping/assembling this weekend but its going to be SO busy! Ahhh, it always gets so crazy before Christmas. I have plans till Christmas every night but maybe 2. Lol 2 concerts this weekend, a few friends from Victoria in town, getting an iphone! Wha wha! Prince and Jay Z and Kanye this weekend. I might pee. Lol




Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Hump day vegucation

I had dinner at Kevin's house last night after 1.5 hour workout at the gym. I have been switching up my routines and trying to get stronger, especially my upper body. I'm doing Tough Mudder in June and need to have the ability to do 6 pull ups. I think I've talked about this before. So I've been searching online and using all sorts of sources to put together workouts for myself. I've been quite sore the last 2 weeks. Lol. 

That being said, I was SUPER hungry when I got to Kevin's. And we all know what happens then; I don't take a picture. But it sure was delish. He made an udon noodle stir fry with tons of veggies and tofu. With a black bean, lemon sauce. I had seconds. Tasty stuff right there.

Since I didn't cook last night, and I didn't cook the night before I was wracked with what I would blog about. Which is funny because I'm such a chatty person, who would have thought I would run out of things to say. Lol I did not. 

I came across this article the other day and thought it was quite interesting. Its about kale. Which is a green leafy vegetable that should be eaten as much as possible, if not daily. I LOVE kale. I eat it pretty regularly. I put it in my green smoothies, stir fries, stuffed squash or mushrooms, steamed, baked, um, well almost everything. Its super good for you.

It provides the 7 reasons why you should eat kale. They are (taken directly from the article):
1. Anti-inflammatory: Inflammation is the number one cause of arthritis, heart disease and a number of autoimmune diseases, and is triggered by the consumption of animal products. Kale is an incredibly effective anti-inflammatory food, potentially preventing and even reversing these illnesses.
2. Iron: Despite the myth that vegetarians are anemic, the number of non-vegetarians with iron-deficiencies is on the rise. Per calorie, kale has more iron than beef.
3. Calcium: Dairy and beef both contain calcium, but the U.S. still has some of the highest rates of bone loss and osteoporosis in the world. Kale contains more calcium per calorie than milk (90 grams per serving) and is also better absorbed by the body than dairy.
4. Fiber: Like protein, fiber is a macronutrient, which means we need it every day. But many Americans don't eat nearly enough and the deficiency is linked to heart disease, digestive disorders and cancer. Protein-rich foods, like meat, contain little to no fiber. One serving of kale not only contains 5 percent of the recommended daily intake of fiber, but it also provides 2 grams of protein.
5. Omega fatty acids: Essential Omega fats play an important role in our health, unlike the saturated fats in meat. A serving of kale contains 121 mg of omega-3 fatty acids and 92.4 mg of omega-6 fatty acids.
6. Immunity: Superbugs and bacteria are a serious risk to our health. Many of these come as a result of factory farm meat, eggs and dairy products. Kale is an incredibly rich source of immune-boosting carotenoid and flavanoid antioxidants including vitamins A and C.
7. Sustainable: Kale grows to maturity in 55 to 60 days versus a cow raised for beef for an average of 18-24 months. Kale can grow in most climates and is relatively easy and low impact to grow at home or on a farm. To raise one pound of beef requires 16 pounds of grain, 11 times as much fossil fuel and more than 2,400 gallons of water.

Very interesting right? Get some kale folks. Its also got lots of protein. And a ton of other vits and mins. The list is huge. 

Eat only the leaves, the stalks aren't easily digested. Throw some in a stir fry or anyway that you use spinach. Some people aren't down to eat it raw. If you are, the trick is the massage it with a little bit of oil and salt. I like it cooked the most, but raw is delish too. I never massage it with oil or salt as I watch my consumption of those 2 items. 

I didn't put it in my smoothie this morning as I steamed the last I had on Monday night to go along with my leftovers dinner but I used spinach.

Banana, carrot, pear, spinach, chia, hemp, spirulina, lime, water

Salad and soup! My Thai Curried Split Pea Soup
And yes, that is a dollop of hot sauce in my soup. Lol I don't leave home without it! 

Tonight I'm making my first risotto from scratch. Its from the book The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. I've only made a few of her recipes but they have been good. I only didn't like one, the adzuki bean and squash stew. Not for me. This recipe I'm making has mushrooms and peas but I'm going to use edamame because I'm not a huge fan of just straight up peas. I don't hate them, just not a huge fan. Plus edamame has lots of protein and iron.

For a good laugh, check out the 10 naughtiest vegetables on earth here. I cried I laughed so hard. Those veggies need a spanking! lol




Monday, December 12, 2011

Whole Foods to Thrive recipe review: Indian-Spiced Lentil Hemp Patties

The last recipe I made from this book was so easy and delicious I figured that others would be too so I took a crack at another one. If you wanna check out the Black bean chili pizza I made, you can do so here. This time I made a burger pattie, but I didn't eat it like a burger with a bun and such. 

Indian-Spiced Lentil Hemp Patties
2-3 tbsp coconut oil, for frying
1 cup diced yellow onion
1 stalk celery, minced
1 cup red pepper, diced
6 medium cloves garlic, minced
14 tsp ginger powder
1 tsp coriander powder
1 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 cup hemp seeds
3 tbsp sprouted flax powder or finely ground flax seeds
1 1/4 cup cooked red lentils
1/2 tsp sea salt

1. In a medium frying pan, heat 1 tbsp coconut oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery and red pepper, and saute until the onion is translucent and the vegetables are soft. Add the garlic and saute for 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl.
2. To the vegetable mixture, add the remaining ingredients and mix well, mashing the lentils with a fork. Adjust salt as needed. Hand-shape into 4-6 patties.
3. Heat the remaining coconut oil in a large frying pan over low heat. The lower the heat the better, as it will allow the patties to cook longer and get a better crust.  Place the patties on the pan carefully and cook until brown underneath, about 10 minutes.  Flip the patties over and repeat on the other side. Serve warm.

Veggie mixture

Hemp seeds and ground flax seeds

All ready to go!

NOTE: I did not have a red pepper in the house so I used a carrot and an extra stalk of celery. I also processed all the veggies in the food processor including the onions and fried them at the same time. I used NO oil, just water. I kept the heat at medium to prevent it from sticking. I also didn't have red lentils, so I subbed green lentils. THEN I didn't pan fry, but I baked them at 375 for 25 minutes on each side. (depends on size). I only sprayed a little Pam on it. 


Topped with spinach and my Tahini Dressing

Mmmm, patties, raisin chutney, roasted delicata squash, and kale

Delish meal for 2
This meal is so loaded with fiber and protein its insane. The raisin chutney I just threw together at the last moment. I've always thought chutney's were so complicated to make but I was wrong. 

Raisin Chutney
1 cup raisins
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp chili flakes
1/2 red onion
1/4 cup water
1 tsp fresh ginger

Put all ingredients in a food processor and processor until smooth-ish. I just pulsed till the raisins were no longer full raisins. Was for about a minute or so. 

Also, cuz we're red wine whores, we picked up a bottle of wine to go with our afternoon lunch. Have you ever had this bottle before? Its a cheapo bottle, under 15  I think. But the reason I got it was because of the bottle. I loved the chili pepper on it. AND bonus, it was quite delish! I'll def get it again. 

Of course its empty.