Sunday, May 31, 2009

Another Weekend

Another weekend, come and gone too soon! I had a nice run Saturday morning with Jane, running the course of the Milton 10K. But there are a lot of hills, and they totally kicked my butt. I've got some work to do before that race in a week! When I got home, I made myself a nice brunch.
I cooked up a 2 egg omelet with spinach, asparagus and goat cheese, with a slice of sourdough toast spread with spiced cashew butter. I spent the rest of the afternoon running errands, and then was back in the kitchen to do some baking. I started with cookies. I was in the mood for something chocolate, but also wanted to experiment with vegan baking. I decided to make a batch of chocolate peanut butter cookies from Dreena Burton's Eat, Drink, and be Vegan cookbook. Its a sticky dough that I made with white whole wheat flour, Green & Black's cocoa powder, maple syrup, agave nectar, coconut oil, and swirls of natural peanut butter.

I also added lots of chopped Green & Black's dark chocolate, which got melty and gooey as the cookies baked.

The recipe called for vegetable oil, but I decided to use coconut oil instead. Maybe not the best choice, because it definitely gave them a coconut flavor. But they were still really good and chocolaty! My friend Jackie also suggested they could use a little crunch, which I totally agree with. Next time maybe I'll add some chopped salted peanuts.

After the cookies, I started on a recipe to use the perfectly ripe mango I had sitting on my counter.
Mangoes are one of my favorite fruits, but its so hard to get a good one. I decided to showcase this perfect specimen using Joy the Baker's recipe for Mango Lime Bread.

Along with lots of chopped mangoes, it contains lime zest, grated green apple, and golden raisins, and also used white whole wheat flour and maple syrup to sweeten it. Again, I experimented with oils and used EVOO instead of vegetable oil. This time it worked and made the bread super moist. And heart healthier!

For dinner I was inspired by last month's cover of Bon Appetit and made a batch of shrimp enchiladas with salsa verde. It started with broiled tomatillos, poblano peppers, and garlic.

I pureed these into a salsa verde, then coated corn tortillas in it that were filled with shrimp, onions, more poblanos, and feta.

To serve, I topped them with chipotle cream, more feta, and sliced avocado (another favorite fruit!).
Not quite as pretty as Bon Appetit's version, but just as tasty I'm sure.

This morning for breakfast we enjoyed the mango lime bread along with a spinach, asparagus, and feta frittata.

This afternoon I went to visit my friend Jackie and her beautiful baby girl, Piper.

We all took turns holding her.

Isn't she a cutie? The baby, not Jon.

For lunch I brought a batch of Spring Tabbouleh from 101 Cookbooks, made with blugur, asparagus, peas, walnuts, and hard boiled egg tossed in a garlic, lemon, chive, and EVOO dressing.
Lucy brought tomato and mozzarella salad, and Jackie put on a lovely spread.

She said the berries were inspired by the berries she sees me eat every morning!

I enjoyed a big helping of everything.

And we had my cookies for dessert, which were a hit! I'm still kind of full from lunch, but I'm going to go make dinner now anyway. And prepare for Monday...ugh. When do I get to quit my job and bake cookies for a living?

Friday, May 29, 2009

2 Days

I'm 2 days behind! Mostly because I haven't taken too many inspirational photos with my new best friend (aka the new Canon), so I've been less excited to share them. And because I haven't actually cooked anything! A quick rundown of the past 2 days of food.

Oats with banana, greek yogurt, berries, and chopped nectarine.

Spinach and veggie salad with a piece of cornbread from Blue Ribbon BBQ.

Grilled cheese from Delux, made with aged gouda and tarragon mustard.

More banana oats with greek yogurt and strawberries.

And a special sushi lunch yesterday!

Liz and I went to Sakurabuna and shared a spicy scallop roll, rainbow roll, alligator roll with shrimp tempura, eel, and avocado, and a salmon and avocado roll. Last night's dinner was more Asian food, but I didn't get any pictures. We went to Pho Republique and I had a big dish of Thai Basil Tofu.

I"m getting ready to meet my friend Jane to run the course of the 10K we'll be racing in a week. I just had a light breakfast for fuel.

Nonfat yogurt with 1 sliced banana, cinnamon, and pecans. Happy Saturday!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

I'm Still in Love

Yes, the new camera and I are still having a wonderful love affair. I'm lucky I wasn't late for work today because I took pictures of every single thing I prepped for my breakfast and lunch.

Like this nectarine.

And this strawberry.

Which both ended up on top of the Fitnessista inspired breakfast cookie I prepped last night.

This was my first breakfast cookie experiment, and it didn't exactly come out cookie-like, but it was still pretty good. First I mixed 1/2 cup of oats, 1 Tbl of spiced cashew butter, and 1 Tbl of hemp protein powder. Then I stirred in 1/8 cup milk, 1 very ripe mashed banana, and a few raisins. I pressed it all into the bottom of a flat tupperware. It was pretty well held together when I took it out this morning, although a little moister than I think its supposed to be. I was really supposed to use half a banana.  It was quite tasty. And, if I had used almond milk instead of regular milk it would have been raw!

At work I topped the cookie with my chopped fruit.

And some greek yogurt.

So sad switching back to the other camera.

For lunch I had another big salad.

This has spinach, corn, grape tomatoes, cucumbers, red and green peppers, roasted broccoli, feta, and balsamic with EVOO.

I ran 4 miles on the treadmill after work, which felt good!  Much better than yesterday, after almost 2 weeks off.  For dinner I made pizzas out of 2 pieces on naan I had in the freezer.

I used asparagus.
And olives.
And mozzarella.
And some mushrooms, but they weren't as pretty. The pizzas looked good going into the oven.

And even better out of the oven!

Check out the cheese pull...

The naan stayed crunchy in the oven, and the asparagus still had a little bite too, which was a nice contrast with all this gooey cheese.

Dinner seems to take a lot longer to prepare now that I want to document the whole process!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

It Will Never be the Same Again

Derek and I got a new toy today that is going to change the face of this blog! We invested in a new camera - a Canon Rebel T1i. We did a lot of research, and this seemed to be the best option for us to get a high quality SLR that's not crazy expensive for us amateur photogs. It also shoots HD video, which is pretty cool. We started playing around with tonight, and not really knowing anything about the camera or how we should eb shooting, we've already taken the best photographs of our lives. We're also hoping to get a lot of use out of this guy when we get married in New Zealand this Fall. We officially booked our trip this weekend, so he can't get out of it now!

So we can start with the "before" pictures - lunch and snacks taken with my old Canon Powershot. I'll still be using this camera a lot because the Rebel is not really convenient to carry around with me. But its going to be so hard to go back to.

Lunch was a salad with spinach, roasted broccoli, corn, red and green peppers, tomatoes, and feta with balsamic and EVOO.

My afternoon snack was a Pepperidge farm whole wheat sandwich thin (stole these from my mom this weekend) with spiced cashew butter and a few gogi berries on top.

I went to the gym after work and ran 3 miles for the first time in weeks! I have a 10K to run 2 weeks from today, so I need to hit the pavement. Or treadmill. Then I couldn't wait to get home and started playing with the camera!

My first study...zucchini.

Ok, still needs some work. Derek took some nice prep shots while I made dinner.

If you haven't figured it out, dinner was pan seared scallops, sauteed potatoes with shallots, and roasted zucchini and summer squash.

I think I could have made just about anything and it would look great. Just wait until we actually get good at using this camera!