Food and weight-maintenence blog for the POST diet girl

Archive for the ‘Avocado’ Category

Scams

Today was an interesting day.

I thought for a minute that I had sold my motorcycle!

Ah Craigslist, what would life be without your spam and scams?

Throughout the day the emails from this guy had been getting weirder and weirder until he started saying something about ME sending HIM money through Western Union. I ended the transaction right there. Lucky for me I’m not an idiot. (Disclaimer: This is not to say that everyone who is taken in by a scammer is an idiot. But you have to be pretty stupid to fall for this particular guy’s scam.)

So I spent the entire day thinking that I was set. That I was going to be able to pay off my credit card debt. That I might actually be able to afford a couch and that mirror that I want so bad. It was just terrible of this guy to not only try and scam me out of money, but to scam me out of my peace of mind. THAT was what really hurt. I hope this guy dies and rots in hell.

Breakfast:

My brother bought cinnamon bagels and strawberry cream cheese and said I could have one! YUM! I can’t remember the last time I bought bagels! I used to live off of them every day.

Lunch:

Avocado, Tomato and Goat’s Cheese Sandwich

Exactly like it sounds. I crumbled some goat’s cheese, put some sliced avocado on top of that then some sliced tomato on top of that. I may have also put a little light mayo on the other slice of bread. Done!

Dinner:
At my dad’s we had some pork roast and green beans. My dad is an amazing cook so the food was just wonderful! He made rhubarb cake for dinner with a little scoop of vanilla ice cream. He knows how to do it up right! He even gave me a whole bunch of fresh rhubarb from his garden. YES! I’m totally using this to make my brother and sister-in-law breakfast on Saturday when they are both off work!

 

The money transaction went over painless. He actually just sent it to me via PayPal. No problem. I told him about the possible sale of my bike and that maybe I could pay him back right away. I had to break it to him later that it was a scammer. I am very grateful for my dad. He knows I won’t be able to pay him back until I move out. I know secretly he knows this. And he’s OK with it.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga, 2 mile walk to the post office

PARTY!!!

I got to party today!!!!

I got my work done SO early that I actually had time to walk to the post office, stop at the house to take pictures of my project, come home and post it into my store, REST for like 2 HOURS, then take a shower. HOLY SHIT! I was just so all about getting to have a little fun I almost worked TOO hard! Hehe!

While I was at the house I wanted to find something important to me. I TORE APART the attic looking for it. It took me about half an hour to locate it. I was incredibly happy.

When I was in college, I was taking a photography class. So I had a really nice film SLR camera. One morning, I snuck into Future Husband #1’s house. No easy feat as at the time his family had 2 dogs that were INCREDIBLY noisy and normally bark ferociously at anything and everyone. But by this time I’d been over at the house so many times, the dogs recognized me. So it was no thang to them for me to just waltz in. *whew!* I snuck upstairs and carefully tiptoed into his room. I got my camera ready and while he was still sleeping, snapped a picture. The shutter of the camera woke him up. I snapped 2 or so more pictures after he was awake.

The last one in this set was my favorite picture I’d ever taken of him.

I developed the picture myself in our school’s darkroom and went through nearly an entire box of photo paper trying to get it JUST right.

We have quite a long history.

Maybe I’ll share it with you sometime.

Breakfast:

Just a bowl of cereal. Trying to get shit done today!! (I sure as hell did too!)

Lunch:

Exactly what it looks like. A peanut butter and jelly sandwich. I also stopped into the Fresh Market today because they were doing this crazy “sample day” thing for Earth Day. I ate a bunch of little samples of stuff. It was nommy!

Dinner:

Avocado Cilantro Pesto on Angel Hair

I blended an avocado, a handful of cilantro, about 3 T of Romano and a little Parmesan, like, 1/4 cup of olive oil, some lime juice and some pine nuts together in a food processor. I put it in angel hair. It would have been wonderful if it wasn’t for the fact that the avocado was just a LITTLE under-ripe. So it gave it a bitter aftertaste. I think if I add a little sugar to the leftovers, it might offset the bitterness a little bit. Also if it sits in the fridge for a day or 2 it may ripen some more.

 

I went to a good friend’s birthday party tonight! I had a BLAST! I got to drink! I had 2 shots and 2 beers. That’s all I needed to get pretty tipsy! They had lots of snacks and I did have a couple pieces of chocolate and a few chips, but I found I didn’t really care for any food since I ate before I went. So that was a good thing! I got to hang out with friends and family and have a few drinks without worry! We stayed till midnight and walked home. I’m so happy! I love living here. I love getting work done! I sold 3 more things today. Things are going so so well!

Exercise: 2 mile walk

Worried

I have a customer whom, after working my ass of for her in what turned out to be a complete structural nightmare, wasn’t certain she wanted what I was making for her after all. I finished it as quick as I could and just sent it anyway. Here’s hoping she likes it and doesn’t want her money back as she spent a LOT on this and it took a full extra day of my time to finish. UHG! That would be the biggest waste of time in my whole self-employed career if she decides she can’t use it. And I CANNOT afford to lose out on $100 at this point. 😦 She hasn’t written me to say anything along the lines of “I want my money back” yet, so I’ll keep my chin up and hope all goes well.

Breakfast:

My friend last night gave me these GORGEOUS fresh brown eggs as I’d mentioned I needed to stop at the store to purchase some. She claimed to have 5 dozen of these things and couldn’t possibly work her way through all of them before they went bad, so she gave me a carton. I made scrambled eggs with onions, mushrooms, avocado and tomato and shredded on a bit of pepper jack cheese.

Lunch:

I was running around so much again today that I forgot to eat lunch. I get home from running errands at about 3, decide since my shithead husband is busy in the kitchen making smoked salt…I’d just make a good old PB&J sammich! I also had an orange along with this. I can’t remember the last time I had one of these, comforting, reminds me of being a kid again. It was a good decision!

Dinner:

Orange Chicken with Avocado, Mushrooms and Asparagus

FANTASTIC! Seriously…for as quickly as I had to whip this up before going back out, this was SO good!  Just cook the chicken and veggies (minus the avocado…pretty sure there’s diced onions in here too) in a little olive oil and 2 T of butter, then in a separate bowl mix up some orange juice (I used the juice of one small orange), brown sugar, grated ginger, a little lemon juice, berry liqueur and cornstarch.  Throw that into the veggies and allow that to thicken for a couple minutes until it is of your desired consistency. Add the avocado and allow it to heat through. I put this on top of some quinoa. Shit son, I could not get over how delicious this was!

 

After this I went to a party where there were snacks and soda and whatnot. I decided to treat myself to 1 soda (I NEVER drink the stuff anymore) and the bean dip was too good to not have seconds…and maybe even thirds hehe…She also had a fruit/caramel dip platter which I nibbled on throughout the night as well (yes, even the caramel!). I was there from about 8 PM to 1 AM. When I got home I still had an itch for sweets and no one was home, so no one to bother with my baking. (The husband has been staying with a new girlfriend as of late.) So I made a small batch of 6 cookies, had a little ice cream with them (about half a cup) and a few mini Tootsie Roll pops. Totally no where near a full-on binge and I was happy. It was really nice to see my co-workers again from my retail job (its been 7 weeks now since I’ve been scheduled there) and had fun regaling them with stories of my idiot husband and our soon-to-be divorce. All in all it was a good night!

Exercise: 4 mile walk

I feel right now I am forever behind…

Finding the time to keep up with this, make as much stuff as I can, have some form of social life, cook 3 meals a day that don’t suck, work out/do my yoga and remembering to do little things like take care of the cat, do my laundry, do the dishes…I can’t right now. It’s all too much. I have to keep up with this blog, but for now if I made something up or can’t remember the recipe I can’t sit here for half an hour trying to remember if I put lemon juice into that sauce or not. I just don’t have the time. :< I’ve also been skimping on my breakfasts lately and must be getting stressed because my sweet tooth is back with a vengeance. I’ve just been going ahead and allowing myself a lot of things because at the moment its just NOT WORTH the extra anxiety. And in the end it really just doesn’t matter.

Breakfast:

Avocado Muffins (Makes 1 dozen)
 

Taken from: http://simplepleasuresinourlives.wordpress.com/2012/01/29/avocado-muffins/

Filling
½ cup softened cream cheese
½ cup mashed ripe avocado
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
 
Batter
¾ cup mashed ripe avocado
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup whole milk
2 cups white whole wheat flour
½ cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
 
Topping
½ cup chopped walnuts


To make the filling: In a small bowl, whisk all the ingredients until smooth. Set aside until needed.

To make the muffins: In a large mixing bowl, beat the avocado, lemon juice, and sugar until smooth and creamy, scraping down the sides of the bowl once or twice. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Once avocado mixture is creamy, add the vanilla and milk, and mix until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients, mixing on low speed just until the batter is smooth. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl once more to make sure everything is evenly combined.

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line muffin tin with paper baking cups, and coat the papers with nonstick spray. Drop 2 heaping tablespoons of batter into each cup. Using the rounded bottom of a teaspoon (dipped in vegetable oil to prevent the batter from sticking), make a shallow well in the center of each cup. Add a heaping tablespoon of filling (I use a level small cookie scoop), cover with enough batter to fill each muffin cup to almost the top, and sprinkle with chopped walnuts. Bake the muffins until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean, 20 to 24 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan for 5 minutes, then transfer to a rack to finish cooling.

*These were FANTASTIC! No butter, oil or egg! Came together really fast and were just outstanding. I would DEFINITELY suggest though that you not leave these in the oven for 20 freaking minutes at 400…that’s ridiculous! People’s ovens, I swear, how can they work so differently? Mine would be burned WAY before time was up at that temperature for that amount of time! I did 8 minutes at 375, turned them, then did about 7 more minutes. Done. And they were PERFECT! So really, just do what you know your oven does best.

Lunch:

Just a fruit and yogurt bowl today! Too much to do, too much to do…and had some leftovers to get rid of! It’s strawberry greek yogurt with diced apples, pear and orange and then about half an avocado on the side. Good lunch for energy!

Dinner:

Tonight I went to a friend’s for a little mani-pedi party and dinner! We had vegan quinoa soup where I had a HUGE bowl (YUM!), some veggies and hummus, and whole wheat crust pizza with just sauce and cheese (I had 2 slices). GREAT dinner! I stopped to pick up some ice cream on the way home and had my usual bowl before going to bed. ^_^ I felt I did pretty good today!

 

It was very nice just being with my friends and not stressing too much about work for one night. I miss being carefree. But then I worry I might get bored. Hehe. I am never bored.

 

Yet another lack of time day on Meatless Monday

I am incredibly sorry, but if I’ve made a recipe up today I just don’t have the capacity to remember everything, nor the time to dedicate to try and remember everything. It’s been a really long day. I did some apartment hunting and found a couple more really good prospects, so we’ll see how this turns out. I’ll call them and let you know how it goes!

Breakfast:


Cardamom Pear Pancakes

Taken from: http://teaspooncomm.com/teaspoonofspice/2011/11/cardamom-pear-pancakes-holiday-recipe-exchange/

Makes About 8 pancakes

Ingredients

Pears:

    • 4 medium pears, cored and finely chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
    • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
    • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
    • 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg

Pancakes:

  • 1 cup all-purpose white flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. For the pears, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. In a large baking dish, mix together pears, brown sugar, butter, caradmom and nutmeg. Roast for 40 minutes or until pears are soft and golden brown, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from oven, set aside.
  4. For the pancakes, in a large bowl, whisk together flours, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt.
  5. In another bowl, beat together buttermilk, egg, butter and vanilla. Pour into dry ingredients and mix until just combined (do not overmix.)
  6. Heat a skillet or griddle over medium heat with cooking spray.
  7. Pour 1/3 cup batter into skillet. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of pears on top of batter.
  8. Cook until little bubbles on edges start to break, flip and cook other side until golden brown.
  9. Serve pancakes with remaining roasted pears and honey or maple syrup.

*I have a thing for cardamom. The pear sauce made out of this was amazing, really light, not a ton of sugar. I added cinnamon and almonds to the pancakes. Super yummy!

Lunch:

Asparagus Lemon Avocado Soup

If anyone desperately wants the recipe to this, I will try hard to remember, but otherwise just rest assured this has no meat or stock in it (I made it with pureed avocado, cilantro, pistachios and water). And it WAS delicious. Hehe.

Dinner:

Dried Mango Yogurt and Veggie Couscous

I made this awesome concoction from pureed dried mango and yogurt with a little lemon zest, brown sugar, soy sauce, tarragon, curry spices, and rice vinegar on some sauteed onions, peppers, peas and mushrooms. I put all that, along with some extra chunks of dried mango, on some couscous. YUM!!!! Yeah I actually wish I could remember the amounts I put in this because it was incredible. Dried mango was on a sale! YAY!

So after calling some of the places, I may have a stab at a couple of them. There’s a nice sounding second-floor 1 bedroom that includes heat for $430 a month. There’s another complex that a close friend of mine lives in thats a 2-bedroom for $450, but includes nothing else. So I’d have to pay gas, electric and I’m told the coin-operated laundry there is expensive. But it would be nice to have 2 bedrooms. I dunno…I think I’ll schedule a time with the less expensive place to go see it. I have to cut costs wherever I can and I think the inclusion of heat/gas is really nice. I will have to ask him how warm he keeps it in the winter. Being a second floor place would be good as heat rises and all, so I probably wouldn’t be as inconsolably freezing as I was when I lived in the basement of a comparable building up the road. But that guy kept the building at like, 64 degrees in the winter. So I will ask what the guy usually keeps the heat at.

Exercise: 1 hour at the gym

Not enough time

There’s just not enough hours in the day for me to be able to ramble about something today. I wish I could, I always feel as though I have SOMETHING to say every day, but today I am desperate to get more work done and am freaking out a little about time being an issue. It’s always an issue but it feels really bad today for some reason…

Breakfast:

Strawberry Pear Clafouti

Taken from: http://blogs.familyeducation.com/blogs/sweet-pea-chef/strawberry-pear-clafouti

1 quart strawberries, rinsed, stems removed and sliced
1 large Bartlett pear, ripe, but still firm, deseeded and diced
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 eggs
1 1/3 cups skim milk
⅔ cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
¼ cup white sugar
¼ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Grease a deep dish pie pan or a 9×9 glass pan.

Mix the strawberries, pear, lemon juice and brown sugar together in a bowl.

Pour into the bottom of the pie or glass pan.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs.  Add the milk, flour, vanilla, white sugar and salt.  Mix until smooth and pour oven the fruit.

Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

*I baked mine for about 45 minutes since I only made a half recipe and it was smaller than this one. Really yummy and wonderful!! Only uses a little bit of flour and sugar, I didn’t up the sugar at all this time and it was still perfect even by my high sweet-tooth standards!

Lunch:

Corn and Summer Squash Soup

I made this one up entirely, so I will try to remember what I put in it.

Onion
Carrot
Corn
Zucchini
Chicken Stock
Milk/Heavy Cream
Fresh chopped Mint
Fennel seeds
Paprika
Garlic Powder
S&P to taste

I sauteed the onions, carrots and fennel seeds in some olive oil for a while, then added the broth, milk and a little heavy cream. I chopped up a little mint and put that in as well and let it simmer covered about 8 minutes until the carrots were soft. I then blended all of that in a blender till smooth. I added it back into the pot over the heat and put in the corn, zucchini, paprika, garlic powder and S&P and let that simmer uncovered another 4 minutes or so. Until the zucchini was soft. This was excellent! I’m proud of me when I can come up with something so yummy!

Dinner:

Broccoli, Eggplant and Avocado in a Cilantro Lemon sauce

Once again, totally made up, I’ll list what I used but I have little recollection of quantities.

Broccoli
Onion
Eggplant, cubed
Avocado, cubed
Big handful of Cillantro
Coconut Milk
Chicken Stock
Soy Sauce
Garlic, minced
Fresh grated Ginger
Brown Sugar
Rice Vinegar
Fresh squeezed Lemon Juice
Lemon zest
Pine Nuts
Cayenne Powder

I cooked the onion, eggplant and broccoli in some olive oil for a few minutes and whizzed up all the other ingredients (except the avocado and lemon zest) in a food processor for the sauce. I added the sauce to the pan and let it cook down a little while (feel free to thicken with cornstarch if you feel it necessary), then added the avocado and allowed it to heat through without really cooking it. Added some S&P to taste and a little lemon zest on top. This was so good and I was wolfing it down so fast I nearly forgot to take a picture! I adore cilantro and there was a huge bunch of it that smelled so good I simply couldn’t pass it up!

 

I did get a lot of work done today, I also got to go on a walk which I just love to do. Husband has been depressed lately so all he does is sleep right now. I called a couple of apartments, but the rates were a little unreasonable compared to the one I would be getting if I moved into my husband’s best friend’s place and took over his lease. This will most likely be the route I take. I will keep calling places tomorrow. I would also like to get my motorcycle up on Craigslist/Ebay Classifieds tomorrow. I need out so bad its killing me. I also need to pay off a bunch of this debt. I hate having debt.

Exercise: 4 mile walk

I’m still confused about this phrase:

“Too sweet”.

What does that mean?

Too salty, I understand.

Too hot, well….it’s difficult to do (in my opinion as I LOVE spicy stuff), but I can see how you could make something so hot that you can’t taste anything else.

Too peppery? I get it.

Any spice that overpowers a dish and makes it so you can’t taste any other flavours other than that particular spice, I understand.

But it seems to me you can throw all the sugar in the world into something and it simply can’t overpower other flavours. Seems to me it only enhances them more! I up the sugar in almost everything I make because I just adore sweetness!

It’s only “too sweet” if it’s not a sweet. If its supposed to be a savory dish and its too sweet then yer doin it wrong.

Someone with a different palate other than mine will have to explain this to me.

Breakfast:

Strawberry Banana Yogurt Muffins

Majorly adapted from: http://sweetpeaskitchen.com/2011/05/06/strawberry-banana-muffins/

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted (I used half butter half vegetable oil)
  • 3/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten (Taken down from 2 eggs since I was adding yogurt)
  • 1 cup vanilla greek yogurt (Added ingredient)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 cup)
  • 1 cup fresh strawberries, cut into bite sized pieces (I also threw in a few small banana chunks as well)
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (I used cake flour)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt


Streusel Topping

  • 7 tablespoons of butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 cup AP flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar (I used brown sugar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon of salt

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Position rack in center of oven.  Line 12 muffin cups with muffin liners or spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  • In a small saucepan melt the butter. Set aside.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together the brown sugar, eggs, vanilla extract and mashed banana. Add the melted butter and stir to combine.
  • In another large bowl combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Fold in the berries, making sure they are coated with flour.
  • Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until combined.
  • Divide the batter evenly among the 12 muffin cups.
  • Mix streusel topping until crumbly. Sprinkle on top of each filled cup.
  •  Bake until muffin tops are golden and just firm, 20 to 24 minutes, rotating halfway through baking time. Cool muffins in muffin tin for 5 minutes, then transfer to wire rack and cool 5 minutes before serving.

*Once again, I can’t go wrong with adding a ridiculous amount of sugar! I dunno, I like my muffins to taste like cupcakes I guess. They’re basically cupcakes without the frosting. But then I replicate a muffin version of icing as best as I can with the crumble topping! Haha! I made a 1/3 recipe. So I made 4 but only ate 3, which is what I normally do. I assume my cousin will eat the last one. They were creamy and fluffy at the same time with a nice crunch to the top! WOW! 20 minutes was PERFECT for these!

Lunch:

Chicken, Potato and Corn Chowder (with Avocado)

Adapted from: http://healthiefoodie.blogspot.com/2010/01/chicken-potato-and-corn-chowder.html
Based off of Cooking Light’s Potato and Corn Chowder(January 2006) I added calories with the olive oil, chicken and broth, but saved a few on the fat-free half and half.

Ingredients

  • Cooking spray (I used olive oil – I have a cast-iron dutch oven and prefer using real oil rather than cooking spray with it)
  • 1 1/2 cups prechopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped green onions, divided (about 1 bunch)
  • A hefty handful of pre-diced celery and onion mix (I added this in to replace the bell pepper)
  • 2 cups frozen corn kernels
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • About 1 1/2 cups of low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon seafood seasoning (such as Old Bay)
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 1 pound baking potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 cup half-and-half (I used heavy cream)
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups rotisserie chicken, chopped. (I cubed up an uncooked breast and cooked it along with the onion in step 1)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
  • ADDED: 1/2 avocado, cubed

Preparation

Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray (or about 1-2 tbsp olive oil). Add bell pepper and 3/4 cup green onions (I added the celery / onion mix here) , and sauté 4 minutes or until lightly browned.

Increase heat to high; add corn, (I waited at this step and let the corn do a little bit of roasting with the veggies before adding the liquids – the reviews said roasting the corn gave it a little more flavor.) water, chicken broth, seafood seasoning, thyme, red pepper, and potatoes; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until potatoes are tender (it took about an additional 5-10 minutes since I had added more potatoes and broth). Remove from heat, mash the potatoes down using a potato masher or pastry fork so that the consistency thickens a little. Stir in half-and-half, chicken, and chopped parsley, and salt. Place about 1 1/2 cups soup in each of 4 bowls; sprinkle each with 2 tablespoons cheese and 1 tablespoon green onions

*I added the avocado before mashing the potatoes in the chowder. I let them warm up for about a minute and then took a masher and mashed most of the potato and avocado into the broth. This was ridiculously good and a ridiculous amount of food (I think I made a half recipe, I can’t remember.) This is a tried and true chowder recipe that I just added avocado to. Really creamy and delicious!

Dinner:

For dinner my husband took us out to Chinese buffet…where I ate WAY too much food. Then he took me out for a lantern lit walk in the park where they had bonfires set up around a lake with s’mores and on top of THAT there was a cabin at the end with a gourmet coffee and chocolate/dessert buffet. SHEESH! I once again ate way too much. Like, to the point where I thought I might puke. I had NO IDEA I was that full until I went for seconds and took one bite of a small cheesecake and realized there was no room inside for that one bite. LOL! Totally worth it! I don’t even care, it was so great! And it was part of my Valentines Day present! So I was allowed to eat all I wanted! ^_^

I went straight to bed as soon as I got home with an obvious tummyache hehe. It’s ok! Sometimes people eat too much. It happens. Especially at dessert buffets!! I refuse to beat myself up over it.

Exercise: About a 20 minute walk around a park (totally not enough for what I ate lol)

Sweet tooth yet again

So I’ve ruined my perfect healthy week with cookies today! Hehe. I made this nice little berry souffle, which was good, but it didn’t EXACTLY cure my sweet tooth! I mean, it was basically berries and egg whites, so it didn’t really fill me up either. So whats my solution? Make cookies. Hehehe! I figure I can eat healthier for the rest of the day and I wouldn’t have totally ruined my streak!

Breakfast:

White Chocolate & Berry Souffle
Adapted from BBC Good Food
Serves 6

butter, for greasing
icing (confectioners’ sugar), for dusting
200g frozen or fresh berries
2 tbsp rose syrup (use rosewater if you cannot find the syrup)

For the crème patisserie:
3 tbsp cake flour
½ tsp corn starch
2 tsp sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 large egg
4 Tbsp milk
5 Tbsp full-fat cream
90g (3 oz) good-quality white chocolate, broken into pieces

For the egg whites:
6 large egg whites
6½ Tbsp (95 ml) sugar

1. Heat oven to moderate 190 ˚C (375 ˚F).
2. Grease ramekins with butter, then tip a little icing (confectioners’ sugar) into each ramekin, tilting it to cover the sides as well.
3. Toss berries with rose syrup, then place a few berries in the base of each ramekin.
4. For the crème patisserie, mix the flour, corn starch and sugar in a medium sized mixing bowl. Beat egg yolk and whole egg together and add to the flour, mixing to a smooth paste.
5. Combine milk and cream in a small bowl and place in the microwave on high heat for approximately one and a half minutes (it should be close to boiling point). Mix chocolate in, stirring until chocolate has fully melted and there are no lumps.
6. Add chocolate mixture to your egg paste, stirring to ensure it is evenly combined.
7. Now prep your egg whites by placing them into a large mixing bowl and whisking until soft peaks form. Gradually add sugar and keep on whisking until stiff peaks form. This is what will give your souffles volume.
8. Stir about 2 tbsp of the egg whites into the crème patisserie. Carefully fold in a third of the rest, cutting through the mixture. Fold in another third (take care not to lose the volume), then fold in the rest. The mixture should look light and airy.
9. Spoon the souffle mixture into the dishes, then place in the oven and bake for 15 – 17 minutes.
10. The soufflés will be firm on top, but should have a slight jiggle when moved. They should have risen by about two thirds of their original height and jiggle when moved, but be set on top.

*First off, I used butterscotch chips instead of white chocolate chips because it was all I had. I was disappointed in the lack of butterscotch flavour. Which I’m sure was another reason I made cookies which I used the butterscotch in hehe. And I mean it was good! Especially for all the effort I put into it, but it wasn’t quite right. I might have overcooked it a little. Ah well. At least I’ve got COOKIES! (Which I took a picture of for a change, I’ll post it at some point.)

Cookies:

Peanut Butter cookies with Butterscotch chips

Cookies are difficult to get just right. I screwed these up a little. I wasn’t impressed, but ate them all anyway because I don’t like to waste food. I prefer a chewy cookie and these came out a bit cakey and crisp for my liking. I’m still learning the fine art of cookies and I’ve got a good cookie base, but didn’t use that on these. Next time I will have to.

Also, I didn’t end up eating a real lunch. I wasn’t hungry. I didn’t want anything. One of my goals is to start eating like a normal person. Well, a normal person eats cookies sometimes. A normal person stops eating when they are no longer hungry and eats again when they are hungry. I’m tired of forcing myself to eat when I am not hungry. My stomach did not growl at all until about 7 at night. I want to listen to my body again. So I did not have a lunch. I ate when I was hungry. Which was dinnertime.

Dinner:

Cauliflower-Broccoli Curry

Ingredients – 

Cauliflower Florets 3 cups
Broccoli finely chopped 1 1/2 cups
Onion chopped 1/2 cup
Tomato chopped 1/2 cup
Sesame Seeds 2 Tbsp
Almonds 5-6
Ginger 1 inch
Garlic 1-2 cloves
Coriander leaves handful
Seasoning (Oil 2 tsp, Cumin seeds 1/2 tsp)(I used ground Cumin)

Added:
1 Avocado, divided
Red Pepper flakes
Lemon Juice

Method Of Preparation – 

For the gravy –
Saute the sliced onions in 1/2 tsp oil in a hot sauce pan and keep them aside.

Roast sesame seeds and almonds and make a paste of them along with the sauteed onions, ginger, garlic, coriander leaves and chopped tomatoes. (I also added 1/2 of an avocado to my paste mixture)

Now for the curry –
In a hot sauce pan, add oil and the rest of the seasoning. Saute them until done.

Add turmeric, mirchi powder and dhania-jeera powder (I don’t have either of these so I just added Garam Masala powder) and a splash of water.  Mix well and then add the gravy paste. Add about 2 cups of water to make it a little runny.

Add the Cauliflower florets and finely chopped broccoli (remember I was sneaking in broccoli) . [I usually microwave the veggies for about 4-5 minutes to reduce cooking time – optional]

(NOTE: I actually roasted my cauliflower ahead of time. Toss cauliflower with a little olive oil, s&p, red pepper flakes and lemon juice. Roast on an oil-sprayed pan at 400 for about 20 minutes)

Also add some salt, cover with a lid and let the veggies cook for about 10 min. (Cube up the other half of the avocado and add it along with the roasted cauliflower about 3 minutes before broccoli cooking time is up!)

Adjust the taste as required and switch off the flame.

Serve it hot with Roti/Naan/Pulao/Biryani or plain rice 🙂 (I ate mine straight up! No rice or noodles.)

*This was INCREDIBLY good! Totally made up for the unsatisfactory meals I had for the rest of the day. And I was proud that everything in it was good for me! The avocado gave the sauce this creamy texture and flavour without having to add milk or butter. I AM a genius! Hehe. Do you like the flour left over on my counter from baking cookies? I liked how it swept behind my bowl, so I added it in the picture. Anyway if you tried this you’d be truly happy! I think it’s even completely vegetarian/gluten-free/MAYBE even vegan? I think so! Correct me if I’m wrong of course.

 

I’ve still got a lot of work to do before this weekend. My husband’s grandpa is dying. So the family is all coming into town till he passes. We will probably have his cousin stay with us. I adore her. For Christmas she gave me a little key on a ribbon with a tag that she hand-pounded “221 B Baker St.” into (which clearly took a lot of effort as shown by how dented it is on the back hehe) and a little houndstooth button threaded onto it as well. HOW FUCKING ADORABLE AND THOUGHTFUL IS THAT? What girl wouldn’t want the key to Sherlock Holmes’s flat? I also don’t mind doing my yoga while shes sleeping in here because she won’t ask me questions about what I’m doing or bug me or watch me at all the entire time. She usually just sleeps through it.

Oh by the way, its ok. Its ok that my husband’s grandpa is dying. He’s got no will to live. His wife died about 2 years ago and he’s been nothing but miserable since she’s gone. His house has been broken into twice. He’s got all sorts of fun health problems. He’s more than ready to go. He’s totally done with this life. So it’s ok. Don’t feel bad for him. He’s going to be ok.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga, 20 min walk outside (to wake myself up in the middle of the morning), 1.5 hours at the gym

Day #3! (Slow to update…sorry!!!)

I realize that I’ve been super slow to update lately! Well you see, I have to hook my lappy up to my TV to watch all my Who and Sherlock this weekend, so then I can’t do computer type stuff at the same time. And I’ve been doing nothing but watching Sherlock and Who hehehehe! OH and baking!!! ^_^

Breakfast:

Ginger Pear Muffins
*Note: To improve this recipe next time around, I would  increase the brown sugar and add candied ginger.

1 medium pear, peeled and finely diced (I used Bartlett here!)
½ teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons candied ginger, finely chopped
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup whole wheat flour
½ cup old-fashioned oats
¼ cup brown sugar (increase to ½ or ¾ cup)
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
¼ cup maple syrup
¼ cup sour cream
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 extra-large egg
½-inch piece fresh ginger, grated

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line or lightly grease a 12-cup muffin tin.

Toss pear, lemon zest, and candied ginger together in a small bowl. In a large mixing bowl, combine flours, oats, sugar, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and ground ginger. In a separate mixing bowl, combine maple syrup, sour cream, melted butter, egg, and fresh ginger. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir to combine. Fold in pears.

Divide batter evenly among the muffin cups.

Bake for 20 minutes until golden brown and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

*While these did not look all that pretty and my oven sucks so baking things at 400 is a bad idea, they really were delicious! I’ll know that for next time though…I tried by only baking these for 15 minutes instead of 20, turning the pan around after 7 minutes (because I tend to over-bake muffins), but it didn’t really work as well as I’d hoped. BUT they tasted super great! Just the texture and fluffiness and photogenicness and all that could have been better.

Lunch/Dinner:

Chicken Pot Pie

Ingredients
For the herbed pâte brisée
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/4 cup ice water

For the filling
1 whole chicken, 3 to 3 1/2 pounds
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
1/2 large red onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
3 1/2 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and quartered (about 2 cups)
3 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 1 1/3 cups)
1 parsnip, cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons brandy
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups milk
3/4 cup frozen peas
3/4 cup frozen pearl onions (I did not use these)
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Pinch nutmeg (optional)
1 egg, lightly beaten, for egg wash

Added: 1/2 Avocado, pureed

Directions
Make the pastry
1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, salt, and thyme. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs, about 10 seconds. With the machine running, add the ice water through the feed tube in a slow and steady stream, a little bit at a time, until the dough just comes together. You may not need quite all of the water. The dough should not be wet or sticky. If the dough is too dry and does not hold together, add a little more water.

2. Turn the dough out onto a clean work surface. Divide in 2 and wrap each half in plastic wrap, shaping them into flattened disks. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Make the filling
1. Rinse the chicken. Place it in a large saucepan or small pot, just large enough to hold the chicken comfortably, and add enough water to cover. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Reduce the heat and skim the foam that is floating on the top of the water. Add up to 1 tablespoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Simmer until the chicken is cooked through, 40 to 45 minutes. Remove the chicken from the pot with a large slotted spoon and let cool. Pull the meat from the bones and shred it. Discard the skin and bones.

2. Strain the stock through a fine strainer. Measure 2½ cups and set aside. Refrigerate or freeze the remaining stock for another use.

3. In a large saucepan over medium-low heat, melt the butter. Add the red onion, mushrooms, carrots, and parsnip, season with salt and pepper, and cook until softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Add the brandy and simmer until evaporated. Add the flour, stir to blend with the butter, and cook for 30 seconds. Add the 2 1/2 cups reserved chicken stock, bring to a simmer, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the milk, bring to a simmer, and cook until the vegetables are tender and the sauce has reduced to the consistency of a thick white sauce, 7 to 12 minutes. Add the peas, pearl onions, thyme, parsley, nutmeg, and shredded chicken. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Arrange a rack in the center of the oven. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick silicone baking mat.

5. Roll the dough 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick. Cut rounds slightly larger than the diameter of your ovenproof bowls or ramekins. Place the rounds on another baking sheet and set aside in the refrigerator.

6. Ladle the chicken mixture into the ramekins. The mixture should come all the way up to the top of the bowl so that the crust doesn’t sink into the filling and soak. Top each bowl with a round of dough, tucking the excess around the edges of the ramekins. Brush with the egg wash. Use a knife or scissors to cut a vent in the crust. Set the dishes on the prepared baking sheet and bake, rotating the sheet about two-thirds of the way through the cooking, until the crust is golden brown and the juices are bubbling, 30 to 40 minutes. Serve hot.

*I used pureed avocado in mine for that extra creamy boost! It’s a little secret of mine! ~_^ The crust on this was FANTASTIC! You can see how flaky and perfect it came out! I still have more of it, so I will probably use it for a quiche at some point! I also baked my chicken instead of boiling it like it called for but there was still plenty of juices to put into it after baking it as well! I just had to also add a little  more chicken stock separately. SUPERB!

I should probably explain that I took a nap in the middle of the day at the time I would have normally eaten lunch. So by the time I woke up and made myself this crazy meal, it was 6:00. The pot pie was also HUGE!!! I went to work out after eating and was just not especially hungry afterwards. I spent the rest of the night watching Doctor Who and around midnight made myself a small batch of cookies. That was the extent of my eating for the night. I forgot to take pics of my cookies, they were pretty, but the good Doctor distracted me and it slipped my mind! Ah well.

Tomorrow my husband comes home. I love him and stuff, I just don’t know when the next time I’ll get to be really alone is and that bothers me a little. I AM happy that I get to see him. I want to be married, I just don’t want to live with someone. Can I be married and live in my own place? That would rule.

Night #1 of weekend to myself!!!

My husband ACTUALLY CALLED and scheduled his bartending classes. I think the threat of working fast food finally got his ass in gear! He starts next Saturday. So he’ll take classes for 6 weeks and then he gets placed in a job! OH GOD finally! Can I wait 6 more weeks??? Well, the thing is he MAY be able to get driving privileges for a class, so I might not have to drag him out there and back for those 6 weeks! THAT would be completely amazing! So I’m willing to give up some of my day to take him out to the courthouse  to see if they’ll be willing. I know, I know, I see the irony too. Asking for driving privelages from his DUI for BARTENDING class…yes, yes…so really come on. Chances are slim. But my GOD will I be ecstatic if they will!

He needs to realize though that he cannot fuck this up. HE CANNOT fuck this up. If he gets fired from where he’s placed from being drunk on the job, I will divorce him. Because he will officially have a massive problem. And I can’t handle that. I can’t handle not knowing if he’ll be able to hold a job because he has a problem that he refuses to admit he probably already has. And I will be discussing this with him thoroughly so he realizes what’s at stake here. I know this sounds harsh…but I’ve given him chance after chance after chance for the past 6 years to turn himself around with his drinking and he has not yet proven to me that he can do it. Instead, I’m forced to drive his ass around for 6 months because he was driving drunk like a complete moron which I’ve told him NOT to do 100 times. And he did it anyway. And he’s paying the price.

He’s going to DUI school this weekend, so I get the WHOLE WEEKEND off…to myself…to do whatever I want. And watch whatever I want. And cook whatever I want. I can use loud appliances because there’s nobody here sleeping until fucking 2 PM to wake up. I’m so excited I can hardly stand it!

Breakfast:

Blueberry, Blackberry and Peach Cobbler

Taken from: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/individual-berry-crisps-recipe/index.html

Ingredients

  • 12 ounces frozen berries (blueberries or raspberries)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 cups crisp topping, recipe follows

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Place the frozen berries, sugar, cornstarch and 1/2 cup of the crisp topping into a medium mixing bowl and stir to combine. Divide the mixture evenly between 4 (7 to 8-ounce) ramekins. Top each ramekin with 1/2 cup of the remaining crisp topping. Place the ramekins on a sheet pan and bake on the middle rack of the oven for 30 to 35 minutes or until the fruit is bubbling and the topping is browned. Allow the crisps to cool for 15 minutes before serving.

Crisp Topping:

5 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 1 cup

2/3 cup sugar

1 1/2 cups chopped nuts such as; walnuts, pecans, or almonds

1 1/2 cups crushed crackers, gingersnaps or cereal

4 ounces unsalted butter, cubed and chilled

Place the flour, sugar, nuts and crackers into a large mixing bowl and combine. Work the butter into the dry ingredients with your hands until it is crumbly. Store in the refrigerator for up to a week. Use as topping for crisps, cobblers or grunts.

Yield: 4 1/2 cups

*I made a half recipe of this and it was a MASSIVE amount of cobbler!! Did I eat it all? Fuck yes. It’s not realistic for me to keep leftovers and I was plenty hungry this morning! It’s not like I kept eating when I was no longer hungry. And really, I’m not even all that full. I mean I am, but it was the PERFECT amount!! It was crunchy and sweet and tangy and amazing! VERY yum! Totally makes up for the sub-par breakfast I had yesterday! Now I just have to work out like crazy tonight hehe! ~_^

Lunch:

Tomato, Avocado and Cheese Sandwich with Caramelized Onions and Mushrooms

I cut the bread in half and put 2 slices of American cheese and some shredded cheese onto the top half and a little butter onto the bottom half and baked them for about 10 mins at 350. During this time, I threw the onions and mushrooms in a pan with a little oil, butter, salt and a pinch of sugar and let that caramelize. While I waited for THAT I sliced some tomato and avocado and made a little french dressing/lemon juice mayo to drizzle on top. I don’t know how, but it wasn’t too much! It was REALLY good! Very filling, good for me, and perfect for a light lunch before hitting the gym!  I’ve been enjoying doing meat-free meals for lunch lately! It just feels right to do in-between a sugar-heavy breakfast and meat-heavy dinner.

Dinner:

Blackberry Chicken

I’ve used this recipe before. Blackberries were on sale so I decided I wanted this dish again! Here’s the recipe! The only difference here is that I used couscous instead of rice this time!

Night one was a huge success! I watched the second episode from season 2 of Sherlock (which was BRILLIANT!) and even figured out how to hook the TV up to my laptop! YESSSSSS! And I STILL got my working out in tonight! Awesome!! In the middle of Sherlock though I had a cookie craving!! So I made white chocolate cherry walnut cookies! I didn’t get a picture because I’m still working on making cookies look as good as they taste hehe. They’re HARD! Cookies are honestly the hardest thing to get JUST right! Everything else I have no problems with! Ah well! Next time.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga, 1.5 hours at the gym