Food and weight-maintenence blog for the POST diet girl

Archive for the ‘Broccoli’ Category

Closer

Coming closer to my 1 year has left me much lazier in updating this. I am spending too much time thinking of a name, the new content I want to write about, what my first entry will be, how I want to approach it, that I’ve become behind again by a couple days on here. I promise you it will be worth it.

Breakfast:

Miss P’s Test Kitchen: Muffin Experiment #5 – Molasses Muffins

I ought to have perfected my base recipe first before deviating so much, but I was interested in working with liquid sweeteners as opposed to granulated sugar. Here were the results:

2.8 oz Flour (I experimented with Whole Wheat)
3.3 oz grated Vegetables/Fruits (here I used a combination of carrots and apple)
1/3 cup Molasses
1/3 cup full fat Milk
Heaping 1/8 cup Oil
1 Egg
1/3 t Baking Soda
2/3 t Baking Powder
1 t Cinnamon
1/2 t Ginger
Fresh grated Nutmeg (about 1/4 t)
Pinch of Salt

These hardly rose at all. I figured it was due to the insane amount of liquid in it. I should have taken some liquid out elsewhere in the recipe when I added all that molasses. The result, though, ended up on a very tender, moist, and fluffy muffin. Odd! Even though the batter rose better yesterday, the flatter muffins have a MUCH better texture. I will try again tomorrow.

Before lunch, I went flea market shopping. I need a coffee table. Something small, low to the floor and unique. I found an old painted army trunk. It was painted black with gold swirls on top. Some of the paint has chipped off because it is old. I love it. I could buy one and paint it myself, but this one LOOKS antique since is IS antique. That’s the look I want! I bargained with the man over the trunk and a very large oval-shaped mirror with a gold, ornate frame. He tried to offer me $28 for both, but his wife became rather cross, yelled at him in Spanish, and the man muttered, “I am sorry, my wife wants at least $30 for them…” The poor man. I took them anyway. to be honest, the mirror alone is worth nearly $100 new, and the trunk worth close to $70 as it was painted and had love and work put into it as an art piece. I tried to hang my mirror in my living room and just hated how it looked every place I put it. Then it hit me. I don’t have to hang it in my living room. I now have it hanging in my kitchen where it reflects the windows in my little nook. It is beautiful.

Lunch:

I ate this and also had an extra muffin before I leaving to go work out. It had been a long morning and I just wanted a little extra pick-me-up before going back for the first time in 4 months!

Going to the gym was WONDERFUL! I was so excited about being back, I couldn’t keep my heart rate down! The music my mp3 player chose to play were FABULOUS! I missed running! I missed spacing out for an hour! I missed relaxing my brain and just letting the workout take me. LOVED IT!

Dinner:

Pasta with Broccoli, Mushrooms, Tomatoes and Parmesan Cheese

Taken from: http://www.creative-culinary.com/2011/04/pasta-con-broccoli/

Ingredients

2-3 cups broccoli florets
12 oz spaghetti noodles (I used angel hair because I prefer it)
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
1 cup chopped fresh tomato
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 Tbsp butter, melted
4 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
More Parmesan to sprinkle on top
ADDED:
Minced Garlic
Fresh chopped Parsley (for garnish)

Preparation

Simmer broccoli in approximately 2 quarts of salted hot water for a few seconds.
Add uncooked spaghetti and cook for 8 minutes. (I prefer thin spaghetti…so adjust accordingly if you do and add to water after a couple of minutes).
Put mushrooms and tomatoes in bottom of serving bowl.
Drain broccoli and spaghetti in colander and put on top of vegetables in bowl and let it sit for a minute.
Add Parmesan, butter, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper; toss together and serve with some additional Parmesan grated on top.

*This recipe was a HUGE surprise to me! HUGE! I just wanted something easy and simple (because I was DYING to start watching “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes” with Jeremy Brett, who is positively swoon-worthy) and I randomly found this recipe that used all the ingredients that needed to be eaten before going bad and being wasted. THIS was fantastic. I will be making this many, many more times in the future.

Exercise: 1 hour at the gym

Back to work!

It was nice to be “off” for a couple of days, but the time has come to pick up where I left off on Monday with my business! I’ve started a major project and hope to have it done by tomorrow. Next, I’m going to get back on track with my working out. I’ve decided against going to the gym at night. I am now used to getting my exercise during the day and I get sleepy when the sun goes down. So I will work out a time, probably between breakfast and lunch on my days off, that will work best for me to go work out for an hour. Luckily, I now live one block away from my gym. I can’t even wait to get back on the treadmill!

Breakfast:

Miss P’s Test Kitchen: Muffin Experiment #2 – Raspberry Buttermilk Muffins

Taken from: http://www.joyofbaking.com/muffins/ButtermilkBerryMuffins.html

2 1/2 cups (325 grams) all-purpose flour

3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

Zest of one orange or lemon

1 large egg, lightly beaten

1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk

1/2 cup (120 ml) safflower or canola oil

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 1/2 to 2 cups (360-480 ml) fresh or frozen berries (blueberries, raspberries, or blackberries)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Position rack in center of oven. Line with paper liners, or butter or spray, with a non stick cooking spray, 12 – 2 3/4 x 1 1/2 inch muffin cups. In a large measuring cup or bowl whisk together the egg, buttermilk, oil, and vanilla extract. 

In another large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and zest. Gently fold in the berries. With a rubber spatula fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir only until the ingredients are combined. Do not over mix the batter or tough muffins will result. 

Fill each muffin cup almost full with batter, using two spoons or an ice cream scoop. Place in the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 20 – 25 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for about 5 – 10 minutes before removing from pan. 

Makes 12 regular sized muffins.

Note: If using frozen berries you may have to bake the muffins a little longer than the stated time.

*NOTE: I baked these at 375 degrees for 18 minutes. They still seemed like they might be just a little dark, but looked WAY better! I will try a lower temperature tomorrow. Also, I HIGHLY recommend this recipe! The citrusy aromatics of the orange complimented the sweet-tart raspberries wonderfully!

I worked so much today that I forgot to eat lunch. I also had a really late breakfast. I got a lot done though!

Dinner:

Broccoli and Mushroom Stroganoff

I’m not sure what else to call this, but I had sour cream to use up! SO I came up with this:

Broccoli
Mushrooms, cut into large slices
Onion, chopped
1 clove Garlic, minced
Parsley, finely chopped
Dried Thyme (about 1/2 t)
1/3 c Sour Cream
1 T Worcestershire Sauce
1 T Dijon Mustard
1/8 c Beef Stock
1 t Cornstarch

Cook onions, broccoli, and garlic in olive oil for about 5-8 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook for another minute or two. Add spices, sour cream, Worcestershire sauce, Dijon mustard, and stock. Allow that to simmer for a few minutes and if the sauce still seems too thin, add a little cornstarch. Serve on egg noodles or penne. (I used whole wheat!)

*This does not need much salt due to the saltiness of the Worcestershire sauce and beef stock! I would suggest not adding much salt until after you serve it, just in case. This was a great idea to use up some ingredients I had! I’ve been getting MUCH better at doing that lately! I refuse to waste any more food!

I’ve finally got my Netflix working! I get to watch anything I want! Living with my ex-husband was…well, I let him just watch whatever he wanted to watch. It wasn’t worth the whining I got from him. At one point, I could just watch things I wanted to watch while he was gone. But then he lost his job because he’s an idiot. So he was home all the time. I NEVER got to watch ANYTHING I wanted. So having Netflix is a HUGE luxury for me. I mean, massive. And it’s all for me. ^_^

Living alone is pretty great. But I know I won’t be forever.

I am missed

I started chatting with a customer today at work. Turns out he frequents a diner that I walk by every single day. I am somewhat of an inside joke there. I know nobody there, I have never actually been in or eaten at this diner. But they all “know” who I am. I promised him that one of these days, I will shock everyone and walk in. Maybe I will even have breakfast, stay, and chat for a while. I am a landmark on my street.

I cannot disappoint my fans. I will have to continue walking every once in a while.

Breakfast:

Since I had to work, I just did my Cap’n Crunch with Crunchberries without Crunchberries.

Stupid cereal.

I had half a cranberry turkey sandwich and chicken noodle soup at work.

I decided to relax and not work after work today. No second job. Just make dinner and chill.

Dinner:

Broccoli and Mushrooms with Pesto Sauce on Angel Hair

A basic pesto sauce is just basil, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, pine nuts, garlic, S&P, a little lemon juice, and a little water to thin it out. I also added mint. Blend all of that in a food processor. Then I sauteed some broccoli, onions, and mushrooms in some olive oil and threw all of that into a bowl along with angel hair pasta. Pesto is my favourite. My brother gave me the basil. He’s the best brother in the world.

I am a little sad that I am no longer going to be the constant presence that people were so used to seeing. I want the city to know that I am fine. I will have to go on a walk at least once a week to keep up appearances.

 

Unexpected early arrivals (the good kind…not like when your period sneaks up on you 3 days early)

My television is ready for pickup!

It wasn’t supposed to arrive at the store until, at the earliest, the 15th. The latest, the 19th. It arrived today. I gave G a call, knowing that he would end up being the overly excited one. He called be back after his shift and I broke the happy news to him. He offered to come get me immediately so we could go pick it up.

We did as such. This thing is huge. I do not need a television this fucking big. I did have fun assembling it, though. I LOVE putting things together. He simply cannot wait to start bringing over all of his favourite films and television programs to show me. It makes me happy to make him so happy. So I am glad I have it. He was supposed to be here and gone within an hour, an hour and a half at the MOST. We sat on my couch talking and snuggling for what seemed like 5 minutes. But, of course, the sun was practically down when he left…around 7 pm. I enjoy joking with him that we time travel together a lot. My usual punctual nature and frighteningly accurate timekeeping capabilities are dragged through his alternate universe where his complete lack of sense of time manages to grab the nearest lead pipe and whack it in the head, rendering it unconscious and useless. It wakes up with an hour lost and a nasty bump on the forehead.  Time travel.

I did not have breakfast this morning as for some reason, I was simply not hungry for it.

Lunch:

Yeah, this was really all I wanted. Nothing extra. Don’t understand why I wasn’t hungry.

Dinner:

Potato, Broccoli and Bacon Gratin

Taken from: http://www.cdkitchen.com/recipes/recs/64/Bacon-and-Broccoli-Potato-Grat74248.shtml

INGREDIENTS:

2 pounds medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 pound frozen broccoli florets, thawed and drained, cut into bite-size chunks
1/2 pound sliced bacon
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 cup Swiss cheese, shredded

 

DIRECTIONS:

Grease a shallow, 2-quart casserole and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 F.

Place potatoes in a large saucepan with salted water to cover. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are barely fork tender, about 10 minutes. Drain potatoes and coarsely chop; transfer to a large bowl; add broccoli to bowl.

While potatoes cook, fry bacon in 2 batches in a large skillet over medium heat, turning often, until crisp, about 5 minutes per batch. Drain on paper towels. Pour all but 1 Tbsp. bacon drippings from pan. Add onion to pan and cook over medium heat, stirring, until softened and golden, about 5 minutes. Add cream and salt and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, then pour over potatoes and broccoli. Coarsely crumble bacon over vegetables, season with pepper and toss well.

Transfer half of potato mixture to prepared casserole, sprinkle with half of cheese. Layer on remaining potato mixture and cheese and bake about 35 minutes, until golden and bubbly.

*I actually made this recipe exactly. I don’t think I’ve ever made gratin before, but it used many ingredients that I’m just trying to use up! So it was perfect! And you guys, you guys…the heavy cream? Oh my god, it made it so rich and creamy I felt positively sinful indulging in it. Note to self: MAKE THIS AGAIN SOON!

I won something!

What an odd morning!

I’d put off getting some work done (also probably put off proper blogging) to randomly join a chat sponsored by Gevalia coffee. It’s something I guess they do every Thursday morning. They also offer prizes to participants. I thought, “Eh…sure! What the hell?” and jumped into the chatroom. I quickly turned the conversation in the room toward food and made everyone hungry. Then at the end of the chat, they told me that I had won. How they choose their winners, I have no idea, but I won! So basically, I got to talk about food for an hour and then got free coffee. Life is great!

Breakfast:

Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal

Taken from: http://ladywiththeredrocker.com/2012/01/12/pumpkin-baked-oatmeal/

6 cups quick oats
1½ sticks of butter (melted)
1 cup brown sugar (You can adjust the amount of sugar to your liking. You can also use part sugar and part honey if you like.)
1 cup canned pumpkin
¾ tsp. salt
3 eggs
2 cups milk
3 tsp. baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
½ pecans, chopped (optional, but oohhh so good! :D )

Combine all ingredients together in a bowl, mix well, and pour into a 9×13 baking dish.  Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.  In the morning bake at 350° for 20 minutes with foil off.

*Next time, I would like to do an overnight version of this. It was really good, but felt it was a bit dry. I’m not sure if more liquid would help or if maybe letting it soak overnight would help. I did use honey instead of sugar and also didn’t put any other kind of crazy crumble on top. I tried keeping this simple so I didn’t go overboard with the unnecessary calories. I put a dollop of Greek yogurt on top. I had 2 small servings of this and threw out the rest. I made a 1/3 recipe.

Lunch:

You guessed it.

Dinner:

Ginger Pear Chicken

Sorry about the two different light sources in the picture. I’m sure no one else notices that sort of thing but me. Still…

Taken from: http://busycooks.about.com/od/chickenbreastrecipes/r/gingerpearchick.htm

Ingredients:

  • 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh minced ginger root
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 pears, peeled and sliced

Preparation:

Sprinkle chicken breasts with salt and pepper and dredge each in flour. In heavy skillet, combine olive oil and butter over medium heat. When foamy, add chicken; brown on both sides but do not cook through, about 5 minutes total. Remove chicken to plate.Increase heat to medium high; add ginger root and onion to drippings remaining in skillet. Cook and stir until tender, about 4-5 minutes. Add chicken broth; bring to a boil. Return chicken to skillet along with pear slices; reduce heat to medium low. Simmer for 6-10 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is slightly thickened. Serve over couscous or hot cooked rice.

*I of course only made one of these, not six. Hehe. I followed the recipe exactly save for the added broccoli that I put in. I liked this. It was simple, easy, and delicious! I would make it this way again.

I was going to go out with a friend of mine tonight, but she turned out to be too tired. No matter, I worked until late. I didn’t stop till around 11 pm. It was a good day for food!

Exercise: 3.5 mile walk (I now have an iPod nano, those have a pedometer built in! Holy shit!)

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

*WHEW!* Sold stuff today!

I desperately needed to sell SOMETHING either today or by tomorrow so I could pay my bills. Luckily, I sold JUST enough stuff to cover them! I can sleep soundly tonight knowing that once again I’ve cheated the Money Gods and am able to survive a couple more weeks! Now I need to make about $300 in 2 and a half weeks to cover my credit card bills…I can do this!!!

Breakfast:

Goat Cheese Quiche with Hash-Brown Crust

Taken from: http://www.delish.com/recipefinder/goat-cheese-quiche-hash-brown-recipe-mslo0810

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoon(s) butter, softened, plus more for pan
  • 1 package(s) (1-pound) frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 12 large eggs
  • Coarse salt
  • Ground pepper
  • 1 1/2 cup(s) reduced-fat sour cream
  • 1 package(s) (4- to 5-ounce) soft goat cheese, room temperature
  • 4  scallions, thinly sliced

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Brush a 9-by-2 1/2-inch springform pan with butter. Line the sides of the pan with strips of waxed paper (the same height as pan); brush paper with butter.
  2. Squeeze excess moisture from hash browns. Mix in a bowl with butter, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon coarse salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Pat into bottom and up sides of prepared pan, using a moistened dry measuring cup. Place on a rimmed baking sheet; bake until set, 15 to 20 minutes.
  3. In a large bowl, whisk sour cream, goat cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper until well combined; whisk in 11 remaining eggs. Pour into crust, and sprinkle with scallions. Bake until set, 45 to 50 minutes. Unmold quiche, and peel off waxed paper before serving.

*I do not own a springform pan unfortunately, so I just made this in a large ramekin. I don’t have frozen hashbrowns, so I grated a potato and boiled it for about 5 minutes, till the potatoes were soft but not so soft that they were falling apart. This worked VERY well! This quiche was about 3 times the height you see here when it first came out of the oven! I thought maybe I’d done something wrong! HA! It was absolutely heavenly and creamy! The potatoes cooked nicely and had the perfect little crisp to them. I didn’t finish the whole thing, I put it down about 3/4 of the way through it to type on here, then picked it back up to eat more but it just sat in my hands and I realized I wasn’t eating because I was no longer hungry. So I just threw out the rest. Crazy how our bodily cues work, right? This was just a ton of food though, I can see why I wouldn’t want this much.

Lunch:

Spinach, Gouda and Tomato Grilled Sandwich

OK so this doesn’t look like much, and it was in fact a pretty small sandwich, but I made a cream cheese/sour cream/mint/oregano/balsamic vinegar/parmesan spread that was OUTSTANDING! I don’t know what it was about it but it was so good I wanted to kick someone in the face! I grilled this on both sides in a saucepan with a little margarine just to melt the gouda. Oh there was also some chopped onion on top of the spread. I ate my little sandwich thinking that if I was still hungry, I could always have some celery with peanut butter or something. But oddly enough, this was fine. I didn’t need any more.

Dinner:

Quinoa Risotto with Mushrooms, Spinach, & Goat Cheese

Adapted/Inspired by several sources, including Daily Garnish and Skinny Chef

Serves about 2-3 as a main course or 4-5 as a side-dish

Ingredients:

4 cups vegetable stock (I used beef stock as it was pretty much all I had)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, diced
8 oz package of sliced white or crimini mushrooms, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used Sauvignon Blanc)
6 oz baby spinach
2 oz (about 1/4 cup) goat cheese
Salt and pepper

Directions:

Add vegetable broth to a medium saucepan and bring to a gentle simmer. Keep it gently simmering as you make the risotto.

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onions and mushrooms and sauté until softened and lightly browned, stirring often, about 5-7 minutes.

Add the garlic and the quinoa and cook for another 1-2 minutes, stirring often, until quinoa is lightly toasted and fragrant.

Add the wine and stir until all the liquid has been absorbed.

Begin adding vegetable broth to the quinoa, a small ladle at a time, stirring constantly. When each addition of liquid is absorbed by the quinoa mixture, add another small ladleful. Continue adding broth and stirring for about 25-30 minutes total, until quinoa is cooked through and no longer crunchy.

Add spinach to quinoa and stir until spinach is wilted. Add goat cheese and stir until melted and completely mixed in.

Remove from heat, taste, and add salt and pepper if desired. Serve warm.

*This seemed to take forever to make, but was completely worth it. I don’t know what the secret was, but this was ridiculously tasty and filling! It didn’t look like a lot so I was shocked at how full I felt afterwards! I also added some pecans right before serving per another recipe’s suggestion and added a little broccoli too. DAMN! I’d like to say this was Meatless Monday Part Deux, but I did use beef stock in this, so I can’t really say that. I am too poor to buy meat at the moment though, so I’ll be eating mostly vegetarian for the next few days!

My dad wants to take me out to lunch on Friday. Here’s hoping we go to that AMAZING Indian place with the buffet! But really, I realize it’s to discuss my options with the whole divorce/moving out thing and how he plans on assisting me. Financially or otherwise. We shall see how this goes. I hope he doesn’t plan on talking about the past. The past is the past. My parents got divorced due to my dad’s infidelity. There’s nothing that can be done about it now and our family’s issues didn’t in any way affect my marriage. (Though it did help me see the signs a lot quicker than my mom saw them.) I’d really just rather talk about what will hopefully be my amazing future and how I’ll surely find someone who will treat me right and love me unconditionally.

I’ll let all of you know how it goes.

I need to sell my bike.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga (finally!), 1 hour at the gym (a very frustrating hour as it had been a long time since I’d run on a treadmill and I kept getting this INCREDIBLY painful stitch in my side preventing me from doing so…I was very sad)

Nicole and Gwendylon play-date day!!!

EXCITING!

I get to have lunch with Nicole and Gwendylon from nicoleandgwendolyn.com!!! SO very happy!

Start the day early! Lots of work to do before I go out! Glad I did one of those “make-ahead” breakfasts that you let sit in the fridge overnight and bake in the morning! Just add the eggs and pop it in the oven! Brilliant!

Then the phone rings at about 9:30. It’s my mom. She has a doctor’s appointment at 10:00 for an inner ear infection, but she’s managed to throw her back out and can’t drive. I have 5 more minutes on my baking and no way to rely on ex-loser to turn off the oven, I’m also not dressed or look presentable in any way. I ask if she can give me just 5 minutes to get ready. She may be a little late. She says that’s ok.

I throw on some clothes, brush my teeth, make sure the cat is fed. Timer beeps. I take my breakfast out of the oven and turn it off. No time to eat. I grab a book for the waiting room and run out the door. On the way there, I nearly hit a dog and have to slam on my brakes. If I wasn’t completely awake before I am now. Then I am stuck behind a semi-truck that is parked in the middle of the road. Each one of us has to wait for cross traffic to clear so we can go around. SERIOUSLY? Uhg!

I finally make it to my mom’s. At this point its about 8 till 10:00. She says she’s called her doctors office already and they said they couldn’t take her late. She’s had to reschedule. But her back still hurts so bad she thinks she should go to an urgent care. I figure they can also help her with her ear infection and agree whole-heartedly with this plan. I take her to the urgent care, read my book in the waiting room, they send her off with some prescriptions and ask her if I am old enough to drive. (WOW I mean, I look young, but under 16???? I am FLATTERED as I am 29.9 ~_^.) We get some coffee together before picking up the prescriptions to give the pharmacy a little time to fill them. I then take her home.

Is it 1:30 already?? Holy shit.

I eat only half of my breakfast. Lunch is a mere 2 hours away! I don’t want to fill myself up now!

Breakfast:

Baked Oatmeal with Blackstrap Molasses

6 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
2 cups water
1/3 cup kefir, yogurt or whey
1/2 cup vegetable oil or melted butter
1/2 cup applesauce or pumpkin puree (pumpkin is good but will impart a pumpkin flavor)
1/2 cup blackstrap or regular molasses
8-10 large eggs
1 tablespoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 cup raisins or other dried diced fruit, optional
1/2 cup nuts, optional

12- to 24-hours before you want to bake this, combine oats, water, kefir, oil, applesauce or pumpkin puree and molasses in a large bowl and stir well to mix.  Let sit on the counter, covered with a tea towel, till you’re ready to bake.

Preheat oven to 350ºF. and grease a 9×13-inch pan or two 8-inch square pans.  Break eggs into a bowl and stir in cinnamon, vanilla, salt and baking soda.  Then pour this mixture into the soaking oatmeal.  Stir well to break up oatmeal and combine ingredients, adding dried fruit and nuts as you’re stirring.  Pour into prepared pan(s) and bake for 30- to 35-minutes till a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

*I had no applesauce OR pumpkin puree. So I pureed some canned peaches! I almost wish there were MORE peach flavour in this, next time I will add actual little pieces of peach! I did not add any more sugar or honey to this at all. It was perfect the way it was, just enough sweetness for a quick brunch! Letting the oats soak overnight gave them an almost flour-like cake texture! REALLY cool! I will do that more often!

Then it was shower time, errand-running time, and off to lunch!

Nicole and I both had the Mediterranean Salmon Salad! I tried it per her recommendation. We’d both planned on getting the black bean soup, but alas! They were out! So we went for this instead! REALLY great! We sat outside and chatted about our lives, blogs, ED histories, and future plans. She’s just the most amazing, strong, intelligent woman! I hang on every word she says! She never fails to impress me with her optimistic outlook on life and how much knowledge she’s gained from her good and bad experiences alike.  Her desire to help others is something to be admired. She’s dedicated so much of her life and time to people like me. I hope she realizes just how much it means. She amazes me.

Go work out for an hour. My brother gave me a new MP3 player! He didn’t need his old one anymore since he got a fancy shmancy new phone, so I was excited to hear some of the music he had on it! I had a great time bounding along on the elliptical to some new songs! I love my brother’s taste in music, so I knew keeping all of his albums on there would be a good idea! And it was all excellent workout music!

Go home. Is it REALLY 7:00???? And I got nothing done? Oh man…time to start a project! I actually do nearly finish one! In between, I make myself a semi-quick dinner.

Dinner:

Veggie Pot Pie with Cornbread and Gouda topping

I sort of winged a lot of this, so for the filling I used:

Broccoli
Corn
Carrots, diced
Peas
Onion, chopped
Garlic
Cream of Mushroom condensed soup
Sour Cream
2% Milk
Fresh chopped Rosemary
Fresh chopped Sage
S& Lemon P

I sauteed all the veggies in some olive oil for about 10 minutes. I added the CoM soup, a little sour cream, and some milk and just kept adding all 3 in whatever amounts looked and tasted right until it was the creamy consistency that I wanted. I added the herbs and turned off the heat. Then I made the topping which I did take from an online recipe:

Cornbread Gouda topping

Taken from:  http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2010/11/mushroom_and_lentil_pot_pies_with_gouda_biscuit_topping

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, diced
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup (packed) coarsely grated Gouda cheese (about 3 ounces)
  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt in processor; blend 5 seconds. Add butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add buttermilk; pulse until dough forms moist clumps. Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces; shape each into 2/3-inch-thick disk. Set rounds atop filling; top with cheese.

    Bake pot pies on baking sheet until tester inserted into biscuit topping comes out clean, about 30 minutes

    *I put mine into a small bread pan, topped it with the cornbread mixture and gouda and baked it for the 30 minutes suggested. I ate the whole thing it was so good!! I’m glad I went with the seasonings that I did, it made it different from the norm. Definitely try this with any combination of veggies, meats, or condensed “cream of” soups that you want! It’s so versatile, that’s why I love pot pies!

    So kids, I have a date tomorrow.

    I’m nervous. Should I be nervous? I really want this guy to like me. He’s amazing. He’s always been amazing. He takes really good care of me. Should I be worrying about this right now? Take it slow Mz. P…don’t just jump into the arms of the next guy willing to go out with you…but he’s more than “the next guy”. He’s ALWAYS been “next in line” if you know what I mean. I’ve known him for years and years. I hope we have fun!

    Wish me luck!

    Exercise: Distinct lack of yoga due to parental unit crisis, 1 hour at the gym

I’m gonna miss my cat, Jack Donaghy

I know I’ve mentioned this before, but I’m gonna miss my cat a lot. I got the cat FOR him, so I realize I have no right to fight for him…he was a gift. And chances are I’d end up moving into an apartment that wouldn’t allow pets anyway since they tend to be a bit cheaper.

He’s just a really really cool cat.

He’s snuggly and playful and cute. He likes to be held and scratched and loved. He likes to keep me company while I’m in the kitchen and lay on my feet while I’m chopping veggies and mixing batters. Sure, he’s in the way. He gets slightly stepped on sometimes. But he just wants to be part of what I’m doing. And I DO feel he is part of my cooking experience now. It would be odd for me not to have to constantly look down in the kitchen to make certain I don’t squish him. And to reach down every once in a while and pet him to let him know that I see him and realize he’s there.

We shall see what happens. It will certainly feel a little empty in the kitchen without him.

Breakfast:

Apple Banana & Carrot Muffins

Taken from: http://thedailydish.us/breakfast/apple-banana-carrot-muffins/

INGREDIENTS

Batter:
2 apples, peeled, cored and chopped
1 c. grated carrot (1-2 carrots)
1 ripe banana, mashed (the browner the better)
1/4 c. vegetable oil
1/4 c. low fat milk or soy milk
1/4 c. sugar
2 t. pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 c. flour
1/2 t. Featherweight sodium free baking powder

Topping:
3 T. sugar
2 t. ground cinnamon

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a standard size 12 muffin tin or line with paper cups; set aside.

To make the batter, place the chopped apple, grated carrot and mashed banana in a bowl and stir to combine.

Measure in the remaining batter ingredients and mix well. Spoon evenly into the muffin cups. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cinnamon for the topping, then sprinkle evenly over top of the muffins.

Place tin on middle rack in oven and bake 20-25 minutes. Remove from oven and place tin on wire rack to cool. COOL FULLY before removing from tin and/or consuming!!

*LOVED these! Definitely bake them for the full 25 minutes, since there is no egg it takes a while for it to set properly. The fruit and veggies just married beautifully and was just sweet enough, even for me. ^_^ I even only used about 1/2 t of cinnamon sugar on each and it was still perfect for me! And they were so pretty!

Lunch:

Tuna Apple Wrap

Well, I can list what I put into these because honestly couldn’t tell you amounts, I just used what look right. It had 1 can of tuna, light mayo, sweet pepper relish, celery, 1/4 of an apple (I ate the last 1/4 while making this), chopped walnuts, lettuce and 3 slices of muenster cheese. It was delicious, light and refreshing! The only thing I would change would be to use a sharper, stronger cheese next time. There were 3 slices and I could still barely taste it! All in all it was super good, LOTS of protein, lots of good things for my body!

Dinner:

Zucchini and Broccoli Casserole

Adapted from: http://www.hammertown.com/2009/09/this-weeks-recipe-postmaster-debs-zucchini-casserole/

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups sliced zucchini (the smaller the zucchini the better) (I grated mine)
  • 1 egg, slightly beaten
  • 1 cup mayo (I used half light mayo, half ricotta cheese)
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped (I only had yellow pepper)
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Butter (I used margarine)
  • Bread crumbs (I omitted these and topped it with a little more Parmesan instead)

Directions:

1.  Bring zucchini in enough water to cover to a boil.  Boil until just tender–not too long!  Drain WELL.
2.  In a large mixing bowl, combine egg, mayo, Parmesan cheese, onion, green pepper, and salt & pepper.  Mix well.  Add drained zucchini and mix.
3. Butter a large pie plate and pour zucchini mix into pie plate.  Top with dots of butter and spread bread crumbs over the top.
4. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes to 1 hour until bubbly.

Enjoy!

*I was trying to steer clear of the carbs and breads and flours in my dinner since I had them in both my breakfast and lunch. I’m not sure why, but I wasn’t really in a meat mood either. I’m glad I found this nice, simple vegetarian casserole recipe without any pasta or bread. I cooked it for the 45 minutes, which seemed perfect to me! It tasted like comfort food while being healthy for you at the same time!

 

I need to call my dad tomorrow to let him know whats going on. I’m hoping he can help me get out of here ASAP. I’m ready to go. I want my British telephone booth mirror that’s on clearance at Hobby Lobby. I want my own kitchen. I want my life back. My dad is rich. He could probably help me with a security deposit on the apartment that I want. I’ve got one in mind in an area where everything wonderful is within walking distance, including a farmer’s market. ^_^ I want to live over there. I want to remain happy.

I’m also certain now that I can trust living by myself. I don’t have to worry about my eating anymore. I’m going to be ok. If I can handle a week going through what I’ve been going through without binging, I’m going to be ok.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga, 1/2 hour of stair-stepping (couldn’t make it to the gym today, that’s ok, my ankle could use the rest)

I like snow again

I remember being a kid and, on snow days off from school, would just play outside in the snow for hours and hours and hours. Granted, we were pretty bundled up in out little snowsuits and had somewhat of a limited mobility in them, but forts had to be dug! Snowmen had to be built! And snowballs must be thrown! I didn’t mind the cold, I hardly felt it.

When I lost too much weight last year I also lost my ability to appreciate cold weather. Ultimately, I found snow in particular to be absolutely horrid. I couldn’t see it as beautiful because I knew it would just make it wet and cold and miserable outside. I would just hole myself up in my workroom (the warmest room of the house) and let everyone else go have fun outdoors without me.

I couldn’t stand being cold. I was so tired of being cold. So very tired. I would do ANYTHING to just NOT be cold.

I didn’t think I could do it, but it turns out that my desire to be warm eventually trumped my desire to stay overly thin. That’s HOW MUCH I abhorred the cold.

I enjoy being outside in the cold again! I see the snow as beautiful again and enjoy watching it fall! How I’ve missed genuinely loving the differences in the seasons! I feel so good today!

Breakfast:

Couscous and Banana Hot Cereal

Taken from: http://pedalpressure.blogspot.com/

Ingredients:
2 1/4 cup whole milk (I like MOO milk especially but Organic Valley is also a great choice)
1 cup whole wheat couscous (buy in bulk if possible, but packaged should work ok)
~8 cardamon pods (break open and grind the seeds, use 1-3 more if pods are older, dried can work too)
2 pinches of cinnamon
1/4 tsp sea salt (use coarse crystals and grind with cardamon for best result)
1/2 cup brown sugar (use less if you do not have a strong sweet tooth, white sugar will work too, just use less)
2 ripe bananas, sliced
Orange rind (scrape as much or little as you like but not more than 2 teaspoons)
Optional:
1tsp vanilla/banana extract
Fresh fruit for topping
Ground chocolate for topping (Taza Chocolate works great if you can get it)

Preperation:
Combine milk and sugar and heat on medium-high in a wide saucepan, stirring frequently until just boiling. Turn down heat, adding salt, spices, orange rind, and couscous stir and simmer for 30 seconds or so. Remove from heat and let sit until thick. Add extra milk as needed and fluff with sliced bananas. Add fruit or chocolate and serve hot or chilled.

*CHANGES: I used 1 T of honey instead of sugar and only had regular couscous instead of whole wheat. I did use the vanilla and did not have any orange zest unfortunately. I also added a couple dollops of greek yogurt and mixed them in. I added a small handful of chopped walnuts and drizzled just a little more honey on top.

I really really wanted quinoa this morning, but didn’t have any. I decided couscous would be an ok substitute for now and found this super healthy recipe! I was incredibly happy with it, because I wanted to use some fruit, but once again didn’t want anything packed with sugar (for some weird reason). The sun is out and I feel good! I’m glad my stomach at least seems to want SOMETHING today.

Lunch:

Chicken and White Bean Soup

1.5 cups Chicken Stock
1 T Olive Oil
4 oz Chicken, cut into cubes
1/4 small Onion, chopped
1 Carrot, shredded
1 clove Garlic, minced or grated
1/4 cup Celery, cut into small pieces
1/4 small Tomato, chopped
3/4 cup White Beans, divided
Fresh chopped Parsley
Fresh chopped Rosemary

Add 1/2 T or so to a saucepan. Throw in the chicken, but don’t stir it. Allow it to brown for a minute and get nice and crusty at the bottom of the pan. Flip the pieces of chicken over and throw in a bit more oil. Add the chopped onion. Go ahead and start stirring everything together and allow onions to cook and the chicken to cook the rest of the way. Add the garlic and allow to cook for about 30 more seconds. Add the chicken stock. Be sure to stir up all the nice browned pieces at the bottom of the pan. Add shredded carrot, celery and tomato. Allow to cook on medium heat for another 5 minutes or so. Puree about 1/2 cup of the cooked or canned white beans (I used canned) and add it to the pot along with the parsley, rosemary, salt and pepper. Allow it to cook for another 5 minutes. Add the last 1/4 cup of beans and heat through. Serve immediately!

*I’ve not done much cooking with meat that has actual fat in it. I bought boneless skinless chicken thighs on a sale and though I do cut off most of the fat, there’s some I just can’t get to. I was AMAZED at how it sticks and caramelizes at the bottom with a bit of oil! It was SO GOOD! I was worried for a minute that it might burn, but adding a little extra while cooking the onions helped with that! It made for such a beautiful color and caramel flavour! I mean, REALLY impressive! You’ll love this!

Dinner:

Beef Stroganoff and Steamed Broccoli

Taken from: http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/hamburger_stroganoff/

You can substitute the sour cream and lemon juice for a cup of full-fat plain yogurt (room temperature). Do not allow to boil. (I took this suggestion since I was out of sour cream, I still used the lemon juice.)

Ingredients

  • Butter
  • 1 lb ground chuck
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 8 ounces sliced cremini mushrooms (can substitute button mushrooms), sliced
  • 1/3 cup of dry sherry, dry white wine, or water
  • 1/2 cup chopped parsley, loosely packed
  • 1 1/4 cups sour cream (room temperature)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 teaspoon paprika or more to taste
  • 8 ounces egg noodles

Method

1 Put a large pot of salted water (1 teaspoon salt for every quart of water) on to heat, for the pasta.

 

2 Heat a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Melt 1 teaspoon butter in the pan and swirl it around. Sprinkle the bottom of the pan generously with salt. Working in batches as not to crowd the meat (crowding it will make it hard to brown), break up the ground beef and add it to the pan. Sprinkle the meat with salt. Do not stir the meat, as stirring will prevent browning. Once the meat is well browned on one side (a couple minutes, depending on how hot the pan), use tongs or a fork or a metal spatula to flip to the other side. Once that side is browned as well, use a slotted spoon to remove from the pan and set aside. Continue to brown the meat in batches, adding a teaspoon of butter to the pan with each batch if needed, and salting the pan and the meat, until it is all browned. Remove meat from pan. Drain excess fat from pan.

3 Lower the heat to medium. Add the onions to the pan. If you are working with very lean meat, you may not have any residual fat in the pan. If this is the case, you’ll want to add in a tablespoon of olive oil or butter to the pan. Cook the onions, scraping up the meat drippings, until soft, about 5 minutes. Remove onions from the pan (add to the meat).

4 Depending on the cooking times of your particular brand of pasta, this is likely a good time to add the pasta to the (should be now) boiling, salted water.

 

5 While the pasta is cooking, add a tablespoon of butter to the pan, increase the heat to medium high. Add the sliced mushrooms. Sauté until nicely browned (about 4 minutes). Add the sherry (or dry white wine or water) to the pan to deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits. Let the sherry reduce by at least a half, then lower the heat to low.

 

6 Remove the pan from the heat. Mix in the sour cream and paprika until smooth. Return the pan to very low heat, and not let the sour cream boil (or it may curdle). You may add a few tablespoons of water to the mixture to thin it out a bit at any time. Stir in the lemon juice, and about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of salt (taste). Stir in the meat and onions. Stir in the chopped parsley. Add more salt, pepper, and/or paprika to taste.

7 Keep the stroganoff on warm heat until the noodles are done cooking. When the noodles are ready (al dente) drain.

Serve the stroganoff on top of egg noodles. Serves 4.

*WONDERFUL! The sherry in this gave it a kickass sweetness! REALLY good! I felt the need to kind of treat myself tonight, so this was beautiful, creamy and amazing!

 

I’ve not had a very good day. My husband has been going out every night and though I normally wouldn’t mind as I love to have the house to myself, it was starting to be an indication that something was wrong. So I asked him if everything was ok. Apparently not. But it’s also apparently not my fault. You know, an “It’s not you, it’s me” bullshit explanation. I don’t want to get too far into it, but everything is going to be fine. He obviously has not thought this through whatsoever and will soon discover that he is being a complete and utter idiot. He always does.

I am sad though.

But you know what I DIDN’T do?

I didn’t eat my problems away. I didn’t go on a binge.

I talked myself out of that as soon as he left for the afternoon. I KNOW that it won’t make me happy. I used to THINK that it would. And it won’t. It won’t solve anything and it won’t cure my problems. It will make me sick. I will then feel as physically bad as I will mentally. So instead, I went for a healthy dinner with super lean beef, used greek yogurt instead of sour cream, and a side of steamed broccoli. SO good and good for me!

So instead of feeling even more like shit about myself, I feel great. I’m high in spirits. I know I’m amazing. I’m an amazing person, an amazing wife and an amazing friend. I’m beautiful, smart, talented and fun to be around. And if someone else doesn’t acknowledge that, they’re wrong. They don’t deserve me.

I’m so very proud of myself.

Things are going to be ok.

Exercise: 1/2 hour of yoga (with new ankle-strengthening poses!), 1.5 hours at the gym (I can’t go back tomorrow, my ankle hurts too much)