Showing newest 6 of 23 posts from April 2010. Show older posts
Showing newest 6 of 23 posts from April 2010. Show older posts

Friday, April 30, 2010

Beach Weekend

Good Morning! Happy Friday! I am waking up at the beach after driving here late last night. After I went home yesterday from work I sat on the couch and read some blogs for awhile. After 45 minutes of doing that I figured it's now or never for my run.  Ya know those days you have zero motivation and don't want to get off the couch? That was me yesterday and the only reason I got off the couch was because I didn't think I would be doing much this morning (which has been correct so far.)

My 5 mile run yesterday was torturous just about the entire time. I just couldn't find a pace or a rhythm or a good song to get me going. I did get through it and was glad when it's over. I just kept repeating the mantra, "You'll never regret a workout, just one you've missed." It slightly helped.

After Danny got home we had some leftovers for dinner and I made some hummus and bread to take to the beach. No one has been down here in awhile so I knew there would be no food really in the house. I brought a bunch of fruits and veges and coffee pot and juicer to hold me over until we actually get to a food store. 

In other news, we bought a tomato plant, I don't know if it will grow by us...but we are attempting it!
Here is an updated picture of our basil...not much change, but it is growing.

Danny's parents are coming here until Saturday, so we are staying in the master suite. 
Nice big bed, balcony.... nice.
I woke up this morning to the sun and the waves. 
We went for a walk on the beach too.
How gorgeous is it? It's actually gotten colder since this morning because the wind picked up. 

This is more of a photo post because I'm headed to the beach to do some important reading.  Have a wonderful weekend in the sun!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Potato, Potat-to.

It's Friday! Well not really, it's obviously Thursday, but since I'm not working tomorrow it's like Friday for me. In a few long short hours I will be on my way to NJ to spend the weekend at Danny's parents beach house. I am so excited and can't wait, especially since it's supposed to be a beautiful weekend. I am much looking forward to a 3 day weekend, walks and runs on the beach and waking up to the sound of the ocean. Does it get better than that??

Thanks for sharing what you don't like to share with your sig. others. Don't get me wrong, I love when Danny likes new things I  make him try  bake or cook for him. I love when he likes a vegetable, but there are certain veges I just like to keep for myself, like fresh string beans. I hope that doesn't sound mean! :)

Yesterday I woke up and started my day off with a cup of coffee and a juice. I have so many pears in my fruit drawer from the organic delivery service, so I decided to throw one in, instead of an apple.
how pretty are all of those colors??
this was 1/2 beet, 2 carrots, handful of spinach, 1/2 lemon, piece of ginger, 1 pear

Then I went to work for the last day of the ELA exam. My students and I can breathe deep now, until next week when the math comes up on Wednesday. The math isn't as challenging for them so it's less stressful. 

When I got out of the work I hit up the elliptical at the gym for 30 minutes and then came home to do a yogadownload class. This was a vinyasa class, it wasn't my favorite, but it was still good. By the way, I am very excited about the blog wide yoga challenge Tina and Kate are doing. I can't wait to participate it and share my (pretty) new found love for yoga. (Katie, I know you are saying I told you so, since my sister in law has been telling me this for years now!)

I can't decide what appliance/foods I should bring with me for this weekend. I could go pretty crazy, but I'm going to try to not be extreme. The thing is there isn't that much food there since we haven't all been there since the fall. It certainly isn't stocked up, so I'm thinking I should be bringing some extra food. When I get home from work today I think I'm going to make some hummus and bread to bring at least. 

Remember these?

Well today I thought I'd share the recipe. I saw Gracie from Girl Meets Health make these and she got them from Kath. Kath described them as little pillows and I have to agree. They are SUPER simple and SUPER tasty.  I love how they are cut into circles and browned on both sides.  I cut them into about 1/4-1/2 of an inch thick, arranged them on a cookie sheets, sprayed them with olive oil and sprinkled them with sea salt and pepper.  Then they go into the oven for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, I flipped them and in for another 20 minutes at 400 degrees. 
arrange them...

That's it! Done!

Perfect with any meat or fish...or just by itself!

Shout out to my friend Jackie and her BF who have been making lots of my meals. I love it! Thanks Jack! :)

Have a great day! Also HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my friends Meg and Sam! 

What foods do you pack with you on short vacations or get aways?

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mustard Maple Glazed Salmon and Sauteed String Beans

Good morning bloggies! Two more days of work in this week for me and I couldn't be happier! Is your week going fast or slow? After today it will be more than half way over, try to this of it like that! 

Yesterday when I came home I had an ice coffee from leftover coffee from the morning. Nice, cool and refreshing!
1 tsp sugar and a little skim milk...perfect!

I caught up on most of your blogs while I was drinking my ice coffee. I always find on Tuesdays when I come right home from work, I am the most hungry. I had a 2nd piece of my no bake granola bars and then had a snack that may or may not be weird for most people...
hummus in rainbow swiss that weird? I rolled them up and made them like wraps.

Then I actually cleaned up around my apartment and put away clothes I threw on the floor while I was getting ready (yes, Mom I do that..but don't worry my bed IS made and I made it!) My mom has a running joke that she thinks Danny does everything around the apartment, including making the bed....he does a lot but not everything..I DO do things around here besides make a mess!! (She was horrified by my messy kitchen picture, by the way.)

After spending the afternoon reading blogs, cleaning up, and watching very trashy tv I thought about dinner.  I decided I wanted to make salmon (I took it out when I got home to defrost), string beans and sweet/white potatoes.  We have an excess of potatoes from our organic delivery service so I'm trying to cook them before they go bad. Organic potatoes go bad WAY quicker than conventional....another reason that conventional produce is scary (some of it anyways...). 

I decided to go with salmon with a mustard maple glaze based on a recipe from here

Salmon with Mustard-Maple Glaze

2 tbsp maple syrup
3 tbsp tamari (or soy sauce)
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp sugar (I used turbinado)
2 tablespoons 
Dijon mustard
1 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
2 portions of salmon fillet
salt and pepper to season

Combine all of the ingredients in a small sauce pan on the stove. Heat for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently. 
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the salmon on a baking sheet. Pour the glaze on top of the salmon. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Put in the oven to bake for 20 minutes. 

I also sauteed some string beans and portobello mushrooms as a side dish to this. 

I heated up about 2 tbsp olive oil and browned 2 cloves of chopped garlic on medium heat. I added the string beans and let them cook for about 3 minutes. Then I added the portobello mushrooms and added about 2-3 tbsp of tamari (or use soy sauce). Cook on low for about 10 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes. 

My favorite quote of the day was during dinner when Danny looked at me and very seriously informed me that he lost 4 pounds today when he weighed himself at the gym. I asked him what he planned on doing about it and he's unsure right now (he made a protein shake after dinner). He's not very happy about it, so I'm sure there are some extra scones, cookies, brownies in his future. I even shared one of my string beans with him but I had my fingers crossed behind my back hoping he wouldn't like them because I'm bad at sharing veges  but he just wasn't into it, oh well, next time. 

Tomorrow I'll be posting those AMAZING potatoes!

Last day of the ELA exam!! 

What don't you like sharing with your sig. other?

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Terrific Tuesday!

Morning again! These days just go quicker and quicker! Thanks for wishing my students luck yesterday, overall I think the test was fair (for Day 1) and they were very well prepared for it. Whether they choose to use our test taking techniques, it could go either way, but it's out of my hands at this point. Now it's on to Day Two!

This morning we got up and went to the gym. I really, really can't wait until the weather shapes up so we can run outside in the morning. We got such a nice taste of it two weeks ago, and then nothing. Last week it was too cold and this week the rain is an issue. I'll say next week is the week! I hit up the treadmill with a quick 10 minute warm up. I always find I need to walk longer at 5:30 am to get my body going. After that I am okay to run, but I don't think I push myself as much this early, which is ok with me.

Yesterday after I came home I did an hour of yoga with weights from I certainly am getting my money's worth of the $5.00 I spent on the month. I love that I can try new classes every time I want to do yoga. Sunday I did a Dave Farmer power yoga class. It was great too! I finally held myself up in wheel for 6 seconds (which sounds like nothing, but is FOREVER to me), I held crow and side crane for 1 or 2 seconds. It sounds like nothing, but I was barely able to get into those poses when I started. I definitely feel myself getting stronger in the 4 months I have been doing yoga and it's super exciting. Next time I am wearing a picture appropriate outfit (I usually wear my pajama shorts) I will try to have Danny snap a pic.

For dinner I was in a soup mood since it was raining. Over the weekend my Aunt Millie gave me 2 quarts of her famous meatball soup. I gladly took it and made some rice and barley to go with it. After seeing barley so much from Jess's pictures, I had to make it. It was awesome! I love the texture, chewiness and flavor. Why have I waited SO long to make this? Even Danny liked it (I mixed it in with short grain brown rice for him.)

On Sunday I soaked some cashews to make raw chocolate balls and then when I went to make them today I realized I used all my oats on no bake granola bars. I quickly improv'd and used dates to help give it more substance.

For these raw balls I used:
(original recipe idea from Averie)

2/3 cup cashews (I soaked them overnight)
5 dates
1 tbs maple syrup
2 tbs agave nectar
1 tbs chia seeds
1 scoop protein powder (Amazing Grass Chocolate)
1/4 cup dark chocolate chips

I mixed everything up in the food processor (except the chocolate chips) until it was well processed. Put it into a bowl and add the chocolate chips. Roll into balls and try not to eat all of them at once.

*I finally got some Amazing Grass Green Superfood after seeing it so much in the blog world. Danny had some in his smoothie this weekend and loved it and I tried it in these chocolate balls, so far so good! 
Have a great day!

Do you use protein powders often?

Monday, April 26, 2010

Restaurant Review: Otarian in NYC!

Happy Monday! The start of the week is here. I have to get into work a smidgen early today (will it actually happen? I don't know?) so I can eat my breakfast before "THE TEST". I wanted to make a huge smoothie so I wouldn't be starved, or have to go in early...but I don't think it's happening. How will I drink my coffee AND my smoothie at the same time and NOT have to go to the bathroom 17 times during the administration of the test??? Any tips??

Yesterday we went to Otarian in the city (154 Bleecker St, on the courner of Thompson) courtesy of FoodBuzz (thanks!) It's not really hard to get me into the city, especially when you are right near Crate and Barrel and JCREW. I was so interested to see what it was all about because after creeping around on their website, it certainly looked right up my alley. It is a vegetarian, healthy restaurant that makes it easy and delicious to go meat-less.  I'm going to break it down because I feel it will be easier for you to get an idea of the restaurant that way.

Otarian's vision is based on the restaurant owner's dream of a sustainable planet. Rather than me restating the owner's vision, read it below, and click over to the website to read the full vision.

One of the main contributors to global environmental degradation is the livestock industry. The effects of large-scale meat production are wide-spread and impact unsustainably on almost all aspects of the environment whilst creating other economic and social costs.  The Otarian menu is completely meat-free, a delicious range of vegetarian options that eliminate the negative effects of livestock production whilst providing nourishment. Each and every individual consuming an Otarian meal makes a small but meaningful difference to the planet and all its inhabitants.  Otarian’s goal is to provide guests with delicious vegetarian alternatives and, in so doing, to empower them to make a positive impact on the environment one meal at a time.  (source)  
 I'm sure this guy was thrilled I was taking pictures while he ate...I was pretty sly and I don't think he knew.

Otarian has a very lively, upbeat atmosphere. The people who worked there were very friendly and knew the menu well. The seats and tables were comfortable and everything was extremely neat and clean. There was music playing that was upbeat, but not too loud. There also was a large TV that had video going about the effects of carbon on the environment. 

avocado, tomato, mozzarella salad with pesto dressing
vege burger on whole wheat bun with avocado, tomatoes, lettuce and cheese
bean tacos with a whole lot of toppings
pea o spinach soup (vegan)
It was really hard to choose what to order because everything sounded SO good. I asked a bunch of questions and the people who worked there were very knowledgeable about the menu. Danny and I decided to split all of the food pictured above and they threw in the soup. Everything was SO fresh and delicious. It also was ready extremely fast. It definitely has the idea of fast food, but Otarian takes it to a new level with health, taste, freshness and variety. Both of our favorites were the tacos, but everything really was great. There really is something for everyone on the menu, ranging from wraps, burgers, salads, entrees, soups and desserts.

The only thing I could say that I didn't like was the idea that there was soda there. I think they probably had soda because they are trying to make the restaurant for everyone and don't want to detract people because of drinks. I get why they had it, but I just felt like it didn't go with the restaurant. I would have like to see a bigger selection of seltzers or teas. 

I thought the entire experience was great. I loved that it was quick, easy and inexpensive. I love how it is meatless and you feel like you are helping out the environment by eating there. I also really like that they compost. It's like a regular garbage bin, but it's for composting. Even the packaging is compost-able!  Also almost everything in the restaurant is made from recycled material and a lot of the colorful decor is made from newspaper, you can tell if you look close!
Otarian just has a great message and it's all over the packaging too.

Danny and I really thought this is a great lunch option for anyone, even families. There were a couple of families there, enjoying the food while we were there. You get a huge bang for your buck and with all the options and variety you really can't go wrong, meat-lover, vegetarian, vegan, if you are a food-lover you will love Otarian! Thank you to Foodbuzz and Otarian for having us! 

Okay I'm off to day one of English Language Arts testing! Wish me the students luck!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Eggplant Parmigiana Sandwich

Good evening! Once again this weekend has flown by, it came and went, but that's okay because it's only a four day week for me! Danny and I are heading to NJ for our first weekend at his parent's beach house for the season. We haven't been in months so we are really, really looking forward to meeting his family there and celebrating some birthdays. My nephew was 10 last week and I want to cry, he's so old now. 

I did change my blog layout a little bit and some of you have told me that the page is easier to load, which I'm SO glad about! Thanks for all the lovely compliments! 

This weekend was a little busy so I didn't really have time to blog. Friday night I was so busy picking out a movie to watch (Sherlock Holmes) and then falling asleep to it. (Story of my life.) Yesterday I met up with 2 of my friends and had ice coffee and got manicures and pedicures. It was much needed girl time and Beth even treated me for my nails, which was beyond nice! :) We made some family stops by my grandma's and then hung out and had dinner with my family for the rest of the night. We ordered from an Asian fusion restaurant and  got a bunch of different types of sushi and noodles and other things. It was so good, but I was a bad blogger and didn't take any pictures. 

Here are some of my eats over the weekend in no particular order:

more juice (obsessed) 1/2 beet, 1 carrots, 1 apple, 1 small piece ginger, handful of spinach, 1/2 lemon

Does anyone ever use a pear in their juice??

omelette with mushrooms and red onion with a side salad with avocado and sprouts (also with 1/2 ezekial english muffins with butter)

obviously a scone (or 3)

Then today I had the pleasure of going to a new healthy,vegetarian restaurant called Otarian, thanks for Foodbuzz. (I will be reviewing it tomorrow.) While in the city we stopped at Crate and Barrel where I picked up 2 amazingly handy things.
a huge colander (why I never had one, I have NO idea)

and this neat little dressing container that mixing up your dressing for you!
obsessed! (honey balsamic dressing in there)

Then for dinner I had to think quick because I didn't have any meat left for Danny and I was planning on making focaccia bread sandwiches. I opened the fridge and decided he would like eggplant parm sandwiches, so I went with it. He's the only person in the world that could stand in the kitchen with me, helping me, watching me cook and still have NO clue what I'm making.

For the focaccia bread I used 2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup millet flour, 1 1/4 spelt flour

1 egg and about 2 cups of (whole wheat) breadcrumbs each seasoned with a sprinkle of sea salt, black pepper, oregano, basil and parsley. Coat each side of the pieces of eggplant in first the egg, than the breadcrumbs.

Lightly fried in canola oil, about 5-7 minutes on each side. 

I know the lighting is TERRIBLE, but again it was pretty dark out when we ate! 

Eggplant Parmigiana Sandwich

1 eggplant (cut into circles)
1 egg
2 cups whole wheat breadcrumbs
canola oil
sea salt, black pepper, oregano, basil, parsley (a generous sprinkle of each)
mozzarella cheese
focaccia (or any other) bread
1 can crushed tomatoes

Cut the eggplant into circles. Lay out on a cutting board and sprinkle with salt to draw out the bitterness. Let it sit for about 10 minutes and rinse off. Pat the eggplant dry. Using a large frying pan, pour canola oil in it about 1/4 inch high. Turn on to medium heat. Meanwhile, take each piece of eggplant and dip it into the egg first (both sides) and then the breadcrumb. Make sure each side coats well. Place each piece in the heated oil and let cook until golden brown on both sides (about 5-7 minutes). 

While the eggplant is cooked open the crushed tomato can and heat on the stove in a small saucepan. Season with 1/2 tsp sea salt, 1/2 tsp black pepper and 1 tsp each of parsley, oregano and basil. (Taste to make sure it's enough seasoning!) Take the eggplant out of the pan and put on a plate with a towel to soak up extra oil.

Make sandwiches of the eggplant, sauce, mozzarella cheese on focaccia bread. Enjoy!

*Note: You can bake this in the oven, which would be healthier. I wanted to make it quicker, so I lightly fried it. I was wanting some fried eggplant, so I just went with it. :) 

How was your weekend? Have you bought any fun gadgets lately? Have a relaxing rest of the night!


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