Food and weight-maintenence blog for the POST diet girl

Archive for the ‘Cherry’ Category

Curiosity!

Incredibly proud of myself! It’s so much easier not to skip meals when I’m at home and HAVE to eat all these fresh fruits and veggies. I hate wasting food so damn much. Also, working makes me hungry.

I was VERY disappointed in myself though for waking up late…my brain didn’t get me up until 7:40!!! Why did it do that?? I went to bed…well…early enough…I mean I was talking with G until 1 AM, but really 5.5 hours of sleep should have been plenty! Sad.

I got my yoga in today. I can’t believe how friggin busy I’ve been lately and how often I’ve been skipping this. It always makes me feel so amazing. My back was just crying to be stretched out. I feel great!

Breakfast:

Strawberries, Peaches, White Nectarines, and Cherries with Greek Yogurt and Granola

GORGEOUS food!!! I’ve missed my beautiful food pictures dearly! So fresh and delicious!

Lunch:

Tomato Salad

2 small Tomatoes, cut into large chunks
1/4 cucumber, cut into large chunks
Fresh Corn, cut off of cob
1 large slice Vadalia Onion, chopped
1 small Carrot, sliced
Fresh chopped Basil
Red Wine and Pomegranate Vinegar
S&P

*With this a also had a small apple. I love my food!!! It’s so pretty!! I’ve missed this so much, it’s good to be back!

Dinner:

Apple Sausage Meatballs with Apple Raisin Wine sauce and Mashed Potatoes

Meatball recipe taken from: http://stolenmomentscooking.com/apple-sausage-balls/

Apple Sausage Balls

3/4 c. flour
1/2 t. baking powder
1/4 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 lb. bulk pork sausage (original or maple flavored)
2 c. shredded cheddar cheese
2 T. maple syrup
1 apple, peeled and diced
1/8 t. allspice

1. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the pork sausage, cheese, maple syrup, apple and allspice.
2. Using your hands, combine everything together until all of the ingredients are incorporated. Roll into evenly sized balls, about the size of a golf ball.
3. Place sausage balls on a baking sheet and bake at 375 degrees for 15-20 minutes, until fully cooked.

I made these exactly as instructed!

Sauce:

Loosely based off of: http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,1627,156167-245193,00.html

1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground sage (I used fresh)
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
3 tart apples, sliced
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 c. orange juice (I used red wine and apricot preserves for extra sweetness and flavour)
1 tbsp. vinegar
1/2 c. raisins

I sauteed the apples in olive oil for a little while until they started to brown. Then added all the other ingredients and let it reduce.

*I made mashed potatoes with a little cream cheese, milk and S&P. I’m out of butter, so none of that. Which is probably good as I consume far too much butter as it is. As usual, this dish was fantastic! I didn’t want pasta, so I thought the potato was a perfect substitute! Excellent!!! The sage in the apple gravy was the perfect touch!

 

Me being a MASSIVE nerd, I stayed up to watch the rover Curiosity land on Mars. You guys don’t even know. I was freaking out entirely. I wished I had someone to hug. I was so happy it landed safely and nearly cried when it sent the first pictures. I did fall asleep with the computer in my bed, but the second they started streaming the landing on the NASA website and people started talking, it woke me up and I was immediately pumped! I LOVE BEING A NERD!!!

Amazing!!! Fascinating! A rover as big as a car with LASERS is on Mars, people!!!

AND I have a date tomorrow at noon! Shit kids, this is the best night ever!

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Double work

I woke up early as usual to make and send an item before going into my retail job today. AAAAAND I made a good breakfast!

Cherry Coffee Cake

Taken from: http://www.lottieanddoof.com/2009/07/sour-cherry-coffee-cake/

For the topping:

  • 2 ounces (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted, plus more for dish
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for dish
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the cake:

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened (Very little butter left, so I used vegetable oil)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk (I had no buttermilk, so I used Vitamin D)
  • 2  cups fresh sour cherries, pitted

Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter a 9-inch round baking dish,  dust with flour, tap out excess.

In a medium bowl, stir together butter, flour, sugars, salt, and cinnamon. Set topping aside.

Whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Using a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and granulated sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Working in alternating batches, add flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour. Beat until just combined. Pour into prepared dish, and smooth with an offset spatula. Dot top with cherries, and sprinkle with crumb topping.

Bake until golden and a tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour. Let cool before cutting.

*I was so disappointed with my baking yesterday I had to try again. So I attempted this. I didn’t use enough flour in my topping, so it caramelized and melted on top. Which was actually WONDERFUL. It seeped into the cake and made it moist and delicious! I couldn’t complain.

I ate the leftover tuna pasta salad from the other night for lunch.

I got to see G for a little bit at work. He was on break as I got there. I was being paged to the front so I (unintentionally) pulled this adorable stunt where I ran out of the breakroom, then ran back in because I forgot my name tag, then ran back out. It made him laugh. I like that.

He stayed later than I thought he was going to. So I got to talk to him on my break. We made plans for Monday, I gave him a kiss on the cheek and a hug (in full view of everyone, if there were any suspicions, I’ve pretty much confirmed them) and went back to work.

That put me in an amazing mood for the rest of the night.

So I ate dinner.

Chili from the cafe.

A coworker (who was in cahoots with G….I really wanted to walk home tonight but no such luck….grrrrr…) drove me home. He offered to look at my car and fix the belt on it. Mainly so I don’t walk home at night anymore. All these boys trying to take care of me. It works to a point. I hardly go on night walks anymore. I will one of these nights just because I love it SO much and I HATE not doing the things that I love.

It would be nice to have my car again. If only to go dancing. I miss dancing.

Exercise: 2 mile walk

Movie attempt #2 with #3

I spent this morning trying to be Superwoman.

I would have accomplished it too if it weren’t for one tiny detail.

A big long oven burn right across my hand…

Otherwise, I accomplished a hell of a lot today.

I had cereal for breakfast, so nothing spectacular and nothing to really take a picture of. I had a lot to do and wanted to be out the door by 9.

Four thrift stores/flea markets later and I finally find a cast iron skillet. Sheesh. I also find this beautiful ornate mirror for only $25. It’s worth at LEAST $100 new. I also pick up some candles and holders at another thrift store. I stop to buy buttermilk and also end up with an orange vase and orange/yellow roses that were on clearance for my kitchen table.

I, of course, am gathering up things to make my apartment look nice since PFH#3 will be in it for 5 minutes.

I have 3 hours to cure my new pan, bake a cake (and you know me, this is no boxed cake here…), take a shower, make myself hot, and if I have time, eat lunch.

You know, be Superwoman.

I was on a roll. I was getting shit done. I got my pan cured, ready, cherries pitted, crumble topping made and put into the fridge, batter mixed up and everything all put into the oven at approximately 2. This gives me 45 minutes to get my dishes done and get ready. I have mostly everything cleaned as I wash things as I cook most of the time, but it is IMPARATIVE to me that anyone who sees my place must think I have never cooked a day in it. Everything must be cleaned and put away as soon as I can. Since I was in such a rush, a few things had yet to be washed. As I’m about to take a shower, I notice my candles (which I had burning to make everything smell like candy, because I like that) in my living room were leaking wax ALL OVER my carpet. Holy fuck. Shit. Goddammit. So I blow them out and crazy start cleaning up the wax. I realize some of it is still wet and not really set yet, so I clean up what I can and go take that shower. Have to run out and add something to my crumble in the oven (this was purposely), wash a few more dishes, and then dig the wax out of the carpet with a dull knife, vacuum up the waxy bits, clean off what had splattered onto the candle stands and my entertainment center…THEN go get dressed and do my hair. At this point I have about 10 minutes. I get my hair done in like, 3 minutes THANK GOD. It came out perfectly the first time. No time to re-do my eyes…there’s still some makeup that didn’t wash off completely in the shower, so its not terrible. I THROW on my clothes (ironically, same outfit I chose when I had that date with PFH#1 a month ago…), wash the last of my dishes, and go to take my cake out of the oven.

G knocks at the door.

I freak out slightly and burn my hand on the oven rack. Shit shit shit.

I try to run to grab my shoes so I can look presentable at the door. I can only find one of them. Fuck.

I run to the door, one shoe in hand, throw it open, and panting say “Holy shit, you have NO idea what I’ve been through in the past half hour…” and all he can do is laugh at me.

I love him.

I’ve of course had no time for lunch and really don’t care.

As I’m putting the last finishing touches on my cake, he notices my hand.

I tell him I burned it when he knocked.

He felt TERRIBLE, poor guy. He didn’t do it, I did it…I just didn’t want to keep him waiting and started rushing too much.

Trying to be Superwoman.

He liked that analogy.

He compliments my decor. He says I have great taste. He calls me classy.

I don’t believe I have ever been called that in my life.

In my head I am SO grateful that cleaning up my mess and purchasing candle stuff and flowers was not in vain. He thinks I’m classy.

We go to the movie. I tell him at some point that I have a blog. He is of course curious. Shit. Shit. Shit. I tell him it’s a recovery blog and that he probably wouldn’t have much interest in it. He says he would never want to invade my privacy and totally drops the subject. He’s amazing.

Dear god I hope he never sees this blog.

As we’re waiting in line to get tickets I ask him if I don’t look totally thrown together. He says I look beautiful and that I always look beautiful. I tell him he only thinks that because I always pretty myself up for him. He says I don’t give myself nearly enough credit.

I have never felt more gorgeous in my life.

We saw Snow White and the Huntsman. The movie wasn’t awful, could have been a lot better though. But entertaining nonetheless. And we both LOVE Ian McShane. No one else knows who that is except us. I love this. He’s so fucking cool.

During the movie I lean my hand over the end of the arm rest to lay slightly on his hand.

He does not move his.

Life is fucking great.

We just sit there like that the entire movie. Not moving them. I’m so happy just to be near him.

When the movie is over, I’m the one who has to move mine first.

I love that he sits through the credits with me. I love being the last person in the theater, discussing what we just watched. Or making fun of the names that go by in the credits. Or pointing out songs we liked. I love that shit. I love it.

We leave and of course gab and laugh all the way home. Never ever ever a dull moment with him in conversation. Ever.

When he drops me off I give him a hug and kiss on the cheek and tell him that I know we don’t work together all next week. At all. But that the next time I know I’m definitely seeing him is the 29th as we have a planned date that day. Otherwise, I didn’t know when I’d see him again. BUT that “Brave” was opening this weekend and for once I would take HIM out to see it if he wanted. (And we both REALLY want to see it…) He says he’ll find some time in the schedule that we’re both free and go from there. ^_^

I then head up to my apartment, plate my cake, glaze it, then go straight to my brother’s.

The cake was a HUGE success. I freaked out a tiny bit beforehand. Is it cooked through? Is it going to suck? Did it rise enough? How does it look on the inside?

It was GORGEOUS.

I has pictures and recipe. This is the only set of pics I have for today.

My brother made chicken pot pie. I did not eat much. I was too happy to eat. (????? DAMN YOU G, all….making me not hungry out of emotions and stuff…)

I raved about G the entire damn time I was there. I’m certain everyone was sick of hearing about him and how fucking great he is. Hehe.

Dessert:

The inside of this was just BEAUTIFUL!!!! WOW! And I loved how much of the green lime zest showed up in the glaze on top. DAMN!

Cherry-Limeade Streusel Cake

Taken from: http://www.sprinkledwithflour.com/2010/07/cherry-limeade-streusel-cake.html

Cake:
4 Tbsp butter, unsalted and room temperature, plus more for skillet
1 cup all-purpose flour, plus more for skillet
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 pound fresh cherries, halved and pitted
1 lime, zested and juiced

Streusel Topping:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, chilled and cut into pieces
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt

Lime Glaze:
4-5 Tbsp powdered sugar
1/2 lime, zested and juiced
3 drops of almond extract

For the streusel topping: Place the flour in a small bowl and add the butter. Using a fork, cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the sugar and salt, mixing it in with a fork. Set aside.

For the cake: Preheat oven to 375F. Cut the cherries in half and remove the pits. Place the cherries in a small bowl, and pour the juice of one lime over them, tossing lightly to coat. Set aside. Butter an 8-inch ovenproof skillet (or an 8-inch cake pan), and dust with flour, tapping out the excess. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using a mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Beat in the egg. Gradually add the flour mixture, alternating with the buttermilk. Remove the cherries from the lime juice, and pour the lime juice into the batter. Add the zest from the lime you juiced for the cherries. Stir just until combined.
Pour the batter into the prepared skillet, and smooth the top with a spatula. Scatter the cherry halves on top of the batter, the sprinkle half of the streusel topping over the cherries. Bake for 25 minutes, then sprinkle the remaining streusel topping over the top of the cake. Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until cake is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove pan from the oven and let cool for at least 30 minutes, up to an hour. In the meantime, combine the powdered sugar, lime juice, zest, and about 3 drops of almond extract. Set aside.
Once the cake has cooled, place a plate upside down, over the top of the skillet. Holding the bottom of the plate, quickly turn the skillet over so that the cake is streusel side down on the plate. Place your serving platter upside down over the cake, and flip again, so the cake is now streusel side up. Drizzle the lime glaze over the top of the cake. If desired, garnish with fresh cherries and a lime slice. Enjoy!

*I’ve saved the last piece of this for G of course and will be slipping it onto a plate in the breakroom with his name on it. Hopefully he won’t even notice I was there…gotta time it right so he’s not on break already when I get there…I know I know he’s on a diet…uhg. It’s a small piece. I hope he doesn’t kill me.

I normally don’t do same-day updates anymore. But I was just so incredibly happy that I had to get all this out.

Please don’t mind me. I’m just in love.

Project “Ignore” continues!

I didn’t speak to #1 all day again. You know…too busy and all. Just REALLY really busy…

I got my kitchen table today!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love it so much!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The guys at the furniture store who helped me load it were INCREDIBLY impressed that I can back up a car. I swooped right back to the loading dock and jumped out of my car and they said “DAMN! Normally we’re standing here waiting forever while the customer takes their sweet time trying to figure out how to back up a car…” I felt…competent.

I get my table then head to another store to buy some gold paint.

When I get home I unbox the pieces and get to painting!

It’s oil based paint. So it’s taking forever and a half to try. Grrr….it looks beautiful though! I mean, I didn’t do very good, but it’s got that “rustic” look, so it’s just what I wanted.

I go on a walk to wait for the pieces to dry. It was my intent to buy supplies. I got as far as my work to refill my water and as I was talking with my 3rd favorite person there, I see PFH#3 over his shoulder purchasing something in the cafe. I get so many butterflies, I have to go…I also realize I forgot to grab a coupon I needed for what I wanted to buy. Shit…I guess I’ll just walk back home.

On my walk back G passes me and waves and whatnot. This makes my day wonderful.

I go to grab the table legs and the pieces are STILL not completely dry. But I can’t wait any longer. I put the thing together (carefully I might add, you try putting together a table without touching the legs really hehe) and stand it up beautifully on my own. I love it so much. It completes my kitchen and is so gorgeous.

I make dinner, but since the legs are still wet on my table, I don’t get to cook on it or eat on it tonight.

Breakfast:

BEST COBBLER IN THE WORLD!!!!

Adapted slightly from: http://www.kitchenlane.com/2012/06/very-berry-fruit-streusel-cobbler-and.html

Generous 3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
3 cup red raspberries
1 cup black raspberries or blackberries
1 cup dark sweet or sour pitted cherries
2 1/2 cups pitted and chopped red or black plum, or apricots, or peeled, pitted and chopped peaches (or a combination)
2 to 4 teaspoons lemon juice
Dough
1 2/3 cups unbleached all-purpose white flour
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Ice cream or whipped cream for serving

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Lightly coat a 9-inch by 13-inch flat baking dish with nonstick spray. For filling: Thoroughly stir together granulated sugar and cornstarch in a large bowl. Gently stir in the berries, fruit and lemon juice until well blended. Spread mixture evenly in baking dish.

For dough: Thoroughly stir together the flour, brown and granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the melted butter, stirring until incorporated. Add the egg, stirring with a fork until mixture is blended and clumped. Sprinkle the clumps of dough mixture evenly over fruit.

Bake in middle third of oven for 35 to 45 minutes, or until well browned and bubbly. Test the center with a tooth pick; the particles should look dry and crumbly, not wet or gummy. Transfer to wire rack and let cool to barely warm or cooled before serving. Serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

Makes about 10 servings.

*I used cherries, strawberries and blueberries. And my friend, this was the VERY BEST cobbler I’ve ever made. It was so crazy ridiculous that I ate the entire thing. I didn’t even care. Hehe. DO THIS!!!!!!!!!!!!

Lunch:

Just a PB&J, it was boring so I didn’t take a picture. I like to show you guys exciting food.

Dinner:

Chicken, Rutabaga and Mushrooms in Banana Coconut Sauce

Dear god I’m in love with rutabaga.

I knew it would go well even with this sweet dish since it is a root vegetable and inherently sweet. I reference this recipe that I’ve used before. It was delicious! I know you think it sounds gross. But really, it was SO good. I am a bit weird with food though, nothing is gross to me.

 

When I got online later this night, PFH#1 tried messaging me again. I sort of figured I didn’t want to burn any bridges QUITE yet, so I answered him. Jesus H did THIS open a fucking floodgate. All of a sudden he wants to talk to me. I couldn’t get the guy to shut the hell up. It’s great how ignoring someone really brings out the crazy in them. It was nice to feel appreciated.

He tries telling me yet again that he wants to see me. I tell him pretty bluntly that he’s full of shit. I say “You say that, but your follow-through is crap.” He claims work keeps him from seeing me. I said “Oh no, that’s ok…I’ve got another man willing to make time for me and take me to do all the things that you promise but never do. I’m CERTAIN he doesn’t mind filling in for you.” I do in fact name names. I want him to know who it is that is taking his place. I’m not interested in games. He needs to know that he is losing me and exactly who he is losing me to. He seems upset by this. He tells me he will make it happen. I say “I’m waiting.”

Not for long I’m not.

Movie date and work all night tomorrow with PFH#3. I’m so excited I could just scream.

I will also let him know that the invitation is there to stay any time he’d like. He will not take me up on it. He would feel like he is taking advantage of me. This is OK. It’s not about sex. It’s simply about the invitation and getting those gears turning. Getting him thinking.

Exercise: 4 mile walk

Paris

G desperately wants to go to France.

He will never go.

I know how normal people work. They say they want to do something. They dream about it. They talk about it. They long for it. But they never do it. They don’t think they can.

I will never understand why people do this to themselves.

Why can’t you?

Why the fuck can’t you?

“I don’t have the money.”

“I don’t have the time.”

“I can’t leave work for that long.”

“-Insert significant other’s name here- doesn’t want to.”

Excuses, excuses, fucking lame ass excuses.

This is the only goddamn life you have people. You don’t get a second chance. Do you really want to look back on your life and regret all the things you COULD HAVE DONE had you JUST DONE THEM?

I am taking G to Paris.

I bought a sewing machine not knowing how to sew with dreams of being self-employed. I learned how. I bought a motorcycle without knowing how to ride, but a strong desire to hit that open road with the wind blowing through my hair. I took classes and DID it. I have traveled all over the US on no money. I have been to London being self-employed, barely able to afford rent half the time. I have met all my heroes. My life is a massive adventure.

G pointed this out to me at the movie the other night.

I told him that it doesn’t just come to me. I have to make the choice to live. YOU have to go to IT, adventures won’t just happen to you. If you really want something, you have to just make the decision to DO it. I haven’t failed yet. I’ve succeeded in everything I’ve tried because I have FAITH in myself and my ability to learn and do.  And I’ve no regrets.

I’ve been looking at flight prices and B&B’s in Paris. It’s not even all that expensive. It’s completely doable. Sure I’ll have to work my ass off and save every penny I can for maybe a year (depending on if I plan on paying for the both of us, which I know he won’t let me), but I CAN DO IT. If he wants to pitch in, he is more than welcome to. But I will be giving him a timeline and very soon possibly an exact date (that depends on the flexibility of the airline prices and if I check every day) and am saying “I am taking you to Paris.”

He will try to protest.

I will explain to him that he’s the luckiest man in the world because he has me. Without me, he won’t go. With me in his life, anything is possible. Because that’s exactly what I believe about myself.

I said something to him the other day that he wants to get engraved so he can see it every day. He’d mentioned how he loves to write, but the industry has gotten him down and he hasn’t submitted any of his writing or even had anyone read it in nearly a decade. I told him he shouldn’t let that stop him from doing what he loves.

“Holding back passion is the first step to unhappiness.”

He told me I am 100% right and that I am an inspiration to him.

It’s nice to be someone’s muse.

I demanded to read his writings. He will be giving me copies soon.

Breakfast:

Traditional French Clafoutis

Quite obviously, I’ve been inspired today with French cooking. I’ve done this before, but not the traditional way with cherries. I happen to have them today.

Taken from: http://www.joyofbaking.com/breakfast/CherryClafoutis.html

Cherry Clafoutis Batter:

1/2 cup (65 grams) all purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 large eggs

2 tablespoosn (25 grams) granulated white sugar

3/4 cup (180 ml) milk (whole (full fat) or reduced fat)

1 tablespoon melted butter

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Cherries:

3/4 pound (350 grams) fresh sweet cherries, pitted

1 tablespoon (13 grams) unsalted butter

1 tablespoon (15 grams) granulated white sugar

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) and place the rack in the center of the oven.  Wash the cherries, remove the stems and pits. 

In your food processor or blender (or you can do it by hand with a wire whisk) place the flour, salt, eggs, sugar, milk, butter, and vanilla extract. Process for about 60 seconds, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed. Once the batter is completely smooth, let it rest while you prepare the fruit. 

In a 9- inch (23 cm) heavy ovenproof skillet (preferably non stick), melt the butter over medium heat making sure the melted butter coats the bottom and sides of the pan. When the butter is bubbling, add the pitted cherries, and cook until the cherries have softened a bit and are coated with butter (about 2 minutes). Then sprinkle the cherries with the sugar and cook until the sugar has dissolved and turns into a syrup (1 – 2 minutes). Pour the batter over the cherries and bake for about 18-20 minutes or until the clafoutis is puffed, set, and golden brown around the edges. Do not open the oven door until the end of the baking time or it may collapse. Serve immediately with a dusting of confectioners sugar and yogurt, creme fraiche or softly whipped cream.

Serves about 4 people as a breakfast/brunch dish

*Fantastic! Easy. RIDICULOUSLY easy. Custardy, sweet (but not “too sweet” for people who are into that hehe), and almost too simple for how good it tastes. I’m hoping one day I can make this for breakfast for G in Paris.

Lunch:

Finished off that turkey. Banana. Yum.

Dinner:

Sweet Potato, Parsnip and Pea Stir Fry

This was something I totally made up. I sauteed sweet potato, parsnips and peas with onion, diced tomato and a lot of garlic in some olive oil. I added milk, soy sauce, tomato paste and a splash of lemon juice and seasoned it with Garam Masala, Turmeric and a little Allspice. Finished with about 1 T of brown sugar and S&P. Absolutely wonderful. I put it on some sticky rice with rice vinegar on it. Really wonderful. Outdid myself once again!

 

I got a project done for my store and as a reward got to stream 2 episodes of Food Network Star. Tomorrow I get to work with G all night. I am incredibly excited about this. I’ve never been so looking forward to going to work before. Even if I don’t get to talk to him most of the night, I will be very content just knowing that he is there.

I hope I amaze the men in my life as much as they amaze me.

Lucky

I just got all sorts of weird lucky today.

The morning went EXACTLY as predicted. After turning down 5 people who tried to stop and pick me up to take me to work, I finally gave in and took a ride from one of my managers. I was laughing then, but it really was really really annoying. Which is why I simply gave up. Everyone there knows why I walk, and do they REALLY think no one else offered me a ride? Uhhhhhhhhg.

Everyone also knows the only one I accept rides from is G.

Everyone knows that.

He did not have to go to this meeting.

He will be there, but not until the meeting is over.

I hope to chat with him in passing. And I will be back at 4 when his shift is over for the movie.

I sit with PFH#2 which no one is shocked about. We adore each other.

There are muffins, which I do not partake of as I had cereal for breakfast. There will also be cake for our retiree who is showing up to party with us before we open.

Meeting is silly and pointless as most store meetings are. But it wasn’t terrible.

I stand around and chat with PFH#2 until #3 shows up for work. I stand around with him and eat cake and chat enthusiastically. I only eat half of my piece of cake. I took too much and did not want any more. Also, G is on a diet and could not have any. This made me feel bad. We have a blast talking until the store opens and he has to go work.

I chat again with #2 for a while before leaving myself. Everyone allows me to walk home.

On my walk, I find $20.

And people wonder why I walk.

I stop into a grocery store on the way home and decide I need some sort of protein as I am out of chicken. I search the meat department for something cheap when a certain mystery package catches my eye:

Thats right, just “Meat”. No other description whatsoever. And it was incredibly cheap. Only $2 for 2 lbs. Why is this perfectly awesome looking “meat” so cheap? No idea. It is not on a clearance so it is not old and there is nothing else like it on the shelf. I am content to take it.

Breakfast:

Cereal and cake (not pictured.)

Lunch:

Turkey Sammich

Dinner:

(Maybe) Seared Pork with Cherry flambe sauce and Roasted Parsnips

Taken from: http://homecooking.about.com/od/beefrecipes/r/blbeef49.htm

Ingredients:

1 can (16 ounces) pitted dark sweet cherries with juice
1/4 cup ruby port (I used Sherry)
1/2 cup beef broth
1 teaspoon (drained) bottled horseradish (I had to use ginger, I wish I had horseradish)
1 teaspoon tomato paste
1 shallot, thinly sliced
1 large bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon arrowroot or cornstarch
1 tablespoon mild olive oil
4 beef tenderloin steaks (6 ounces each)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup kirsch (cherry brandy) (I only had regular brandy, but added cherry juice)
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon grenadine syrup

Preparation:
Drain the cherry juice into a large saucepan and set the cherries aside. Add the port, beef broth, horseradish, tomato paste, shallot, bay leaf, and peppercorns. Bring to a boil over medium heat and cook until the mixture is reduced to about 2/3 cup, 12 to 15 minutes. Dissolve the arrowroot in 1 teaspoon water and stir into the sauce. Simmer until the sauce is shiny and slightly thickened, 1 minute longer. Strain, cover, and set aside. (This can be prepared a few hours ahead. If you refrigerate the sauce, bring it to room temperature before proceeding.)

Heat the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over high heat. Sprinkle the steaks with salt and pepper and add them to the hot oil. Brown the steaks on both sides and cook until medium-rare (about 6 minutes total) or to your liking. Transfer the steaks to a large platter.

Add the cherries and kirsch to the skillet and flambé. When the flames die out, reduce the heat to low and add the cherry sauce. With a wooden spoon, scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir in the butter and grenadine syrup. The sauce should be bright red. Return the beef to the pan and turn to coat with the sauce. Cook until the beef is heated through, about 2 minutes longer. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper, if necessary.

Transfer the beef tenderloin steaks to warmed dinner plates. Spoon the cherry sauce over them and serve at once.

*As I had no idea what my meat was, I chose this just to use the cherries again. I had no Grenadine syrup and no canned cherry juice, so I basically made a simple syrup out of pureed cherries, water and sugar and used that instead. HOLY CRAP it was absolutely fabulous! I mean it was so good! I did a pretty amazing job if I do say so myself, AND it was the first time I ever did a flambe! YAY for setting food on fire! It was awesome!!!

 

I had SO much fun yet again with G at the movies. I walked to work to meet him, but brought a change of clothes so I could pretty myself up for our date. Nude heels, jeans and an emerald green sequin top. Even a little makeup…I just want everyone there to think he is the luckiest guy in the world to be out with someone as beautiful as me. We always have so much to talk about, car rides with him are a jumble of thoughts and randomness that amazes me every time. I just love everything about him. He treats me so wonderfully and I have so much fun with him. The next few days are going to suck so badly without him at work.

I miss him when he’s gone.

Exercise: About a 5 mile walk

Busy and Dateless (the story of my life)

Date with PFH#1 did not happen today.

I ran around all day grocery and paint shopping.

I only spent $30 on food and it should feed me for the rest of the month without much issue.

I bought black spray paint to paint my entertainment center thing with because it was cheap. But it also sucked. A lot. So I took it back and bought real paint instead.

Then I spent the next couple hours painting in the hot sun. It was awesome. I love being out in the sun. I am no longer the pasty super-white goth girl that I used to be. The sun is like a drug for me. And in a way the Vitamin D you get from is really is like a drug.

PFH#1 spent the day packing and getting ready for his trip.

It’s ok. I have PFH#3 taking care of me tomorrow.

I am certain to let #1 know this. That another man is happy to pick up where he is slacking. That I adore this man’s company and am greatly looking forward to being with him tomorrow.

He has to know that at the moment I can be lost. I am not tied town and I will not sit around and wait for someone.

He is understanding this.

Breakfast:

I skipped breakfast due to that huge dinner I had last night. Wasn’t hungry.

Lunch:

I dunno, I was running around like a busy ass crazy person all day, I didn’t leave a lot of time for lunch, so I just grabbed an apple.

Dinner:

Tangy Cherry Chicken

Taken from: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/rachael-ray/tangy-cherry-chicken-recipe2/index.html

Ingredients

  • 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, 6 ounces each
  • 2 tablespoons chopped thyme leaves, about 6 sprigs (Left out, did not have)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup pignoli (pine nuts) a couple of handfuls (I used almonds)
  • 3 cups chicken stock, divided
  • 4 tablespoons cold butter, divided
  • 1 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 3 ribs celery, finely chopped (No celery, so I left this out too)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, eyeball it
  • 1 cup dry white wine, 1/4 of a bottle (Used red wine)
  • 1 cup dried cherries, a couple of handfuls (Used fresh cherries instead of dried)
  • 2 cups plain couscous (Used arborio rice)
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice, eyeball it
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, eyeball it
  • 1/4 cup honey, eyeball a healthy drizzling
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • Generous handful flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

Directions

Preheat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat with the 3 turns of the pan of extra-virgin olive oil, about 3 tablespoons. Season chicken liberally with half of the thyme, salt and pepper and add to the hot skillet. Cook the chicken for 5 to 6 minutes on each side. Remove the chicken from the pan to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm.

In the bottom of a medium sauce pot, heat and toast pine nuts over moderate heat and remove. Add 2 cups stock and 1 tablespoon butter to the pot and bring to a boil.

Return the chicken skillet to the burner over medium-high heat, add 1 turn of the pan of extra-virgin olive oil, add the onion, celery, crushed red pepper flakes, nutmeg, salt and pepper, cook for 3 to 4 minutes or until the celery and onions are tender. Add the white wine, and cook until the pan is almost dry, 1 minute. Add the 2 cups boiling chicken stock, and dried cherries and continue to cook for about 5 to 6 minutes or until there is only about 1/2 cup of liquid left in the pan. Turn the heat off the under the pan. Add the remaining 3 tablespoons cold butter in small pieces and whisk until it has completely melted.

In a medium saucepan bring the remaining 1 cup chicken stock to a boil, add couscous, allspice, cinnamon and a little salt. Cover pot and remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes. Drizzle honey over the couscous and add the pine nuts, scallions and parsley. Toss and fluff with a fork to combine.

Serve the chicken whole or sliced with cherry sauce poured over it and couscous alongside. Dark seared greens or simple salad complete the meal.

*This would have been better had I added some pureed cherries or cherry juice to it somehow. I cooked the cherries for too long and they lost a lot of their sweetness. I will fix this next time. Otherwise it was still good! Just not as good as it could have been.

It was such a ridiculously long day, I didn’t even mind not going out. I would have had very little energy left to give on my date. So its ok. I am very much looking forward to the movie tomorrow. I have to be at work at 8 AM for a store meeting, I already know its going to be incredibly annoying walking there since every single employee who works there is going to be heading in ALL AT THE SAME TIME and will INSIST on picking me up. People don’t understand that I’m not walking because I have to, I’m walking because I WANT to. This is an incredibly difficult concept for most people to understand.

But I’ll get to see both Potential Future Husband #2 and Potential Future Husband #3 there. Such great guys. I love them.

Exercise:  Taking apart entertainment center, painting entertainment center (2 coats) in the heat, dragging each piece up to my apartment and re-assembling it