Um, What are you Drinking?

I finished Eat & Run by Scott Jurek.

Awesome book. Great story-telling, interesting (and tasty!) recipes. Great information. In all honesty, I probably would have finished it in a day or two, but my schedule hasn’t allowed for much down time…regardless, I enjoyed it…I’ll probably end up buying this book.

Am I going to immediately go vegan now that I’ve read it? No.

But I will be adding a lot of his recipes to my current rotation. Scott’s “Holy Moly Guacamole?!” Anytime, anywhere. I whipped up a batch the other night…Farmer Ben and I had devoured it by the next day!

After last night’s run, I made a little refresher Scott named the “Coco Rizzo Cooler.”

This drink is surprisingly light and not-too sweet with just a hint of coconut. The chia seeds add a fun texture. Scott recommends this for before, after or during a long run. I don’t know if I’d drink it during…but it is tasty for an after run treat. It’s got some really good stuff in it!

I had a serving this morning in place of my usual coffee pick-me-up.

The really good thing about this is that it’s great on it’s own…but I can see it being equally delicious with a variety of other ingredients (crushed ice and rum, maybe?)…experiment!

It’s not very pretty, but it’s fun!

Mason Jar Tupperware. It's a thing.

Mason Jar Tupperware. It’s a thing.

Anyway, I didn’t have the exact ingredients…so here’s my version:

Coco Rizzo Cooler

Adapted from Eat & Run

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup plain cooked rice (I used jasmine)
  • *1 cup almond-coconut milk (I always get Blue Diamond’s Unsweetened Variety)
  • 3 cups water
  • 2 tbsp. agave nectar or  maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp. chia seeds

*The original recipe called for coconut milk… either way, be sure to read the label. Buy the milk, NOT the drink.

What to do:

  • Combine all ingredients except the chia seeds in a blender. Blend until completely smooth. (I had a few chunky bits because I overfilled my blender and had the beginnings of a  Coco Rizzo disaster…oops.)
  • Pour into a large container that has an airtight lid (I used two giant mason jars), add the chia seeds and give it a good shake.
  • Keep refrigerated. Serve chilled and  shake again before drinking.

Can be poured into a glass or bottle, if you are on the run. Makes 4-5 servings.

Enjoy!


Daniel Fast-The Plate

In my last post, I spilled the beans on what the hubs and I have been up to for the last three weeks. I also gave a brief explanation as to what the logistics of the Daniel Fast are… In my next post, I’ll discuss my personal experience.

This is the fun post. I’m talking about the food.

So, what’s been on my plate?

As you probably know, I am a huge breakfast person…as in, I can barely survive if I skip it. That being said, I stuck with oatmeal most days of the fast.

Because you can’t have dairy or sugar during the fast, I would just cook with water, then throw in some apples, cinnamon and peanut butter to spice it up a bit. Other days I would do bananas and pecans. It all works.

Toward the end of the fast, I started cooking the oats in (unsweetened) almond milk to add a little more calcium and iron. I’ve been tracking my food on MFP for a long time and was noticing that I wasn’t getting enough of the two. The almond milk definitely helped. 

My main snacks were popcorn, apples and matzos with peanut butter.

The key to making this fast work is to plan your meals. It’s possible to go out for lunch or  dinner on this plan, but it’s very difficult–Mostly because you never really know what restaurants are putting in your food.  Thus, you want to plan ahead and cook a  few meals at a time.

I tried to snap pictures of what I was eating throughout the 21 days. Apples and oatmeal aren’t very pretty, so here are a few photos of other meals.  Keep in mind, these are all meat and dairy free; Vegan, with more restrictions. 

I’d say we still ate some pretty delicious things!

image

Burrito Bowls: quinoa, beans, vegan sausage (ToFurky Brand), onions, tomatoes garlic peppers, olives and guacamole

 

image

Skillet Meal (makes multiple servings): Corn, black beans, tomatoes, carrots, onions, garlic and peppers served over volcano rice. Great with a splash of hot sauce.

image

Veggie Packed Miso Soup: Red Miso, Water, rice noodles, peas, broccoli, sprouts, tofu

image

Veggie Packed Tabouleh: sprouts, carrots, avocado, peppers, garlic, tomatoes, peppers, scallions, cashews, lemon juice, parsley served over romaine

image

Tofu Breakfast Scramble: tofu, curry powder, potatoes, onion, garlic, broccoli and spinach.

image

Mostly Plain Pasta: Organic Bow-tie Pasta, Olive Oil, smoked salt, black olives, parsley and some secret spices

image

Fresh Tomato Sauce and Pasta: Whole wheat pasta, tomatoes, olives, garlic, onion, basil, parsley, capers and peppers

image

Salad and Latkes–kind of: greens and broccoli with balsamic, shredded potatoes and onions, olive oil and leftover tomato sauce.

image

Drunken Noodles (Pad Kee Mao): One of two times we ate out, veganized for us.

image

This was probably one of my favorite meals-more salad with balsamic and a Moroccan chickpea stew over rice. YUM!!!!

image

Sweet Potato Quinoa Burger (I adapted the Lean Green Bean’s recipe) over greens with Tabasco sauce

image

Veganized Minestrone with rutabega, kale, potatoes, carrots and loads of other veggies.

image

Popcorn: my snack of choice for the fast, popped on the stove in the trusty old cast iron, seasoned with olive oil, salt, pepper and smokey paprika.

image

Thai coconut curry soup with lots of veg and tofu

image

The other time I ate out-a burrito less the shell: rice, peppers, onion, tempeh, black beans, tomatoes and roasted potatoes, with salsa. Yum!

image

Another pasta sauce with vegan sausage. Onions, garlic, peppers, basil, olives, sun-dried tomatoes and capers.

image

Tofu Tikka Masala

image

Another breakfast scramble.

image

Another salad, matzos and peanut butter ( another go-to snack)

Again, this isn’t everything, but it’s a good description of what our diet was like.

We ate a lot of beans, dark leafy greens, pasta, potatoes and rice. I’m not complaining. I love all of these things. We also ate a lot of tofu and tried tempeh in a few meals.

Peanut butter and apples became a staple (not that both of these weren’t before..but it was more pronounced).

We also experimented with seasoning and made sure to pack in a lot of veggies in almost every meal. I noticed that the amount of fat, sugars, and cholesterol I was eating dropped a lot, not that it was high before, but it was even lower in these three weeks.

I mentioned before that we didn’t have any coffee… I tried to trick myself by drinking hot water out of my coffee mug. It worked about half the time.

Anyway, stay tuned for my next post where I will give you a look into my personal experience with the fast.

Do you have any favorite vegan staples? Do you think you’d be able to give up meat, dairy, drinks and sugar for three weeks? What would you miss the most?  Let me know!


Pumpkin Coffee. Need I say more?

Yesterday, I talked about a homemade and healthy version of the quintessential fall caffeinated beverage: the Pumpkin Spice Latte.

I used this recipe from Eating Bird Food. I made a few small tweaks, but the main parts are the same. I love that she shared this and that it doesn’t contain any artificial colors or …other ingredients.  Mad props!

This is not nearly as sweet as your Starbucks go-to. But it’s tasty. Try it!

Here is what I did.

Pumpkin Spiced Coffee Goodness

adapted from the above link

What you’ll need:

Brewed Coffee of your choice (French Roast, anyone?)

About 1/2 cup milk. I used unsweetened vanilla almond milk as the post suggested, but I’ll use half and half or whole milk next time for a creamier taste/texture…because I’m naughty like that. 

A few spoonfuls of pumpkin puree–I usually try to do my own, but if you don’t have time for that, this stuff is organic and contains only pumpkin. Just my style.

Cinnamon-a couple of good pinches or grates on the microplane.

Nutmeg--go the fresh route. You’ll thank me later! Again, just a few good grates-the fresh stuff is strong!

Allspice--just a pinch or two.

A good splash of vanilla

Creamed Honey or Maple Syrup-a small spoonful. This would also be amazing with maple cream or brown sugar.

What to do:

Combine pumpkin and milk in a small saucepan, heat over medium-low heat. Using a spoon, break up the pumpkin and stir.

Once mixture gets to a simmer, add in your other ingredients to taste, I just did a pinch or a few good grates of each. Stir.

Pour coffee into a mug.

Using an immersion blender, blend mixture until milk is frothy and foamy. You can also use a regular blender-anything that will fluff up your milk.

Pour mixture over coffee.

Top with ground cinnamon and whipped cream if you’re feeling fancy.

Drink with your hubby or friends over a good book.

Happy Tuesday!


R & R…or Something Like It.

Wow, it’s hard to believe that our mini-getaway was almost three weeks ago! I guess time flies when you’re crazy busy!

So, what have I been up these last few weeks?

We successfully took our road trip to visit the fam. Ben finally met my oldest sister, which made me super happy! We also indulged in Wegmans, family time, coffee, tons of delicious food, grilling, 80 degree weather, Wegmans and more Wegmans.

Then we came back to reality. And went back to work. Le sigh.

I made these amazing cupcakes. One of Ben’s co-workers liked them so much that he hugged me. Twice.

I also made this ridiculously easy-and crazy good dip.

And then I made some more tortillas, some tasty pasta and yummy egg salad (sunflower seeds are an excellent addition. Who knew?)

Oh! I also went to a pretty awesome benefit for a friend (Hi Brenda!). It was so nice to see people come together for an outstanding cause…I even took home a fantastic (giant!) drying rack for laundry…it may take up half of my living room when it’s unfolded. And… I may have gotten third place in the karaoke contest, not too shabby!

In our down time, Ben and I have been making random trips to the co-op and grocery store,  and ordering giant crocks and sauerkraut stompers from Lehmans. No big deal.

I’ve also stumbled on a new food obsession. Spinach Smoothies. Don’t hate.

I like to mix it up, but my typical creation is this; you take a cup of milk (I’ve been experimenting with my milks, I’m currently on almond milk), a spoonful of peanut butter, half a banana (frozen works best), a couple spoonfuls of flax seed meal and a bunch of spinach, throw it all in the blender and blend til combined. Enjoy! I have also been known to use nutella instead of peanut butter or add in some kale/berries…I love it because it takes little effort to make and helps me get a nice kick of fruits/veggies in the morning.  I also LOVE the bright green color. Anyway, try it. Mix it up. It’s worth it.

Speaking of blended veggies, I  tried a few of Zee Lemon’s juice concoctions over the last week. I have to say, I was a huge fan. Head on over to her blog and check out her “take-over” posts. Pretty interesting stuff. And some great ideas.

Another concoction I came up with?

An apple-peeled, a kiwi-peeled, about a cup of broccoli, about a cup of berries and as much spinach as you can fit in the blender. Surprisingly, very good. It also has a gorgeous color. I had this for breakfast on Friday and it was one of the only times that I wasn’t starving a few hours later.

Let’s see…what else have I been up to? We spent yesterday with Ben’s best friend’s family and had a great time. Good food, great conversation and lots of relaxation. I’d say it was a win. Ben even got Preston to eat his veggies. No small feat.

I’ve also been running and going for walks. And not drinking a lot of coffee. I don’t know how I stay awake. I picked up a sweet pair of kicks and have a date with two good friends from good ol’ RSC tomorrow. Super excited!

Anyway, that’s all for now.  Are you going through any weird food phases?  Share them below!