Avod-caredo

Posted on April 27, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

This post has nothing to do with advocare, I’ve done a tuna pun recently so I thought this one would work. It did, it’s hilarious.

The show is open, tech week is done, previews are done, and we’re open. Normally, I don’t get post show depression until after a show closes, but the rehearsal process for this one was one of the best I’d ever been through. On Sunday after the opening, I was talking to Scott’s (my director’s) wife and she told me that he had been saying the best things about me at home. Granted, he had been saying pretty much all of those things to me; it was a weird rehearsal process in part but we had the best director/stage manager relationship and I’m going to miss it. I really hope we get to work together again.

That being said, I’m back to a somewhat normal schedule with work, which is also nice (I like money). I’d been living off my smoothies and salads for the past few weeks, and while they’re good, I wanted something different. I don’t know why, but tuna salad popped into my head.  I don’t miss my ex as a person, but his tuna salad, now that I miss. That was good. But, it was mayo based. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love mayo probably a little too much. That being said, I wanted to make something a little healthier. That’s where avocados come in. Avocados are great, they creamy, they have healthy fat and they make things taste so good. They’re a pretty great substitution for mayo in a lot of instances.

This recipe is very easy and doesn’t take any time at all. The longest part of this recipe is making the hard boiled eggs. I made a melt out of it (because, cheese) but if you want a  less carby option, you can throw it on a salad.

Avocado Tuna Salad Melt

Here’s what to get from the store:

Avocado
Eggs
Pickles
Dijon Mustard
Tuna

Avocado Tuna Salad

2 Avocados
2 Hard boiled Eggs, diced
2 pickle spears, diced
1 can of tuna
4 tbso dijon mustard (or more to taste)
Salt, pepper, paprika, lime juice

  1. In a bowl, mash the avocado until smooth. Add everything else and mix. Taste to adjust seasonings.

Super easy. The easiest.

I am now back to the size I was when I moved, but because I have more muscles, I’m technically heavier. It’s slightly annoying, but I have muscles now, so I can’t complain too much. I also know I’m in way better shape because I can go through a 40+ minute cardio workout and still go through 30-40 minutes of my normal yoga without feeling like I’m going to die. I’m hoping my abs will start coming through, they’re there, they just have a little bit of covering on them.

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Smashing!

Posted on September 15, 2016. Filed under: Breakfast, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

I bring my salad to work for a few reasons, 1: I can’t eat deep dish every day, and 2: I actually really like salads. Pretty much every time I eat one behind the bar (which is often, I can’t just leave the bar to eat a meal) someone comments on it. My response is always along the same line “I didn’t get this figure eating deeps dish” or “I worked hard on this, I want to keep it” Most of the time I get laughs. Then I remembered, there are very few people in my life, especially not current customers, who knew me when I was bigger.

In fact, there aren’t too many people in my life from my past anyway. There’s my family, obvisouly, my friends Phil, Jason, Sally and Eric. And the last 3 have only really known me about 8 years. Phil’s known me for 16. But to most people, this is how I look now. And I’m really proud of that. The way I got to be this way was from eating right, practicing my yoga, and finding balance.

Yoga helped me find balance, really. I used to have no energy, bad body image and was just over all depressed. Yoga and the right food helped me find that. I really hope that everyone I know can find their balance and become the best version of themselves they can be, because what is life if you’re not the most awesome version of yourself?

That being said, having balance means not eating the same green smoothie and spinach salad every day. It can get boring. The other day before I went to the store, I had toast in my mind. I don’t normally have bread at home, but I’ve come to notice if I have a craving, I should just fulfill it.

Avocado toast is something that has been around for a while now. The idea is to have a filling meal with some healthy fat. I wanted to make it a little more healthy, with added protein. When you don’t eat a lot of meat like I do, you do need to add extra protein into your diet to get muscles.

This is an easy recipe, all I did was mix kale, black beans and an avocado, put it on some toast, and added a fried egg. This doesn’t need  a real recipe, just a picture. The real recipe will come later tonight or tomorrow with the butternut squash and sweet potato soup I have going.

Avocado Toast with Kale, Black Beans and a Fried Egg

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What an Eggcelland Eggsperience

Posted on June 15, 2016. Filed under: Snacks, Uncategorized | Tags: , |

Serina’s going to kill me for that. She hates puns.

I’ve been racking my brain of what to cook this week. I have no nights free, so whatever I made had to be a little faster than when I make dinner. I really wanted some swordfish, but you can’t get that around here. All I knew is that I had to cook something.

This morning I had a doctor’s appointment and for some reason, I didn’t make my smoothie before hand and I was STARVING after. I only had about an hour and a half before I had to be at work, and for some reason eggs and avocado popped into my head.

Eggs are a great food, they have a lot of vitamins that humans need and there are so many ways to cook them, so you never have to get bored with the same old thing. I also love avocados because they’re a healthy fat which promotes healthy cholesterol and even weight loss. I try to have a half of an avocado a day.

This recipe is incredibly easy and you can throw whatever spices you want on it. I was a little concerned about the warm avocado, but it actually doesn’t taste any different than an uncooked one.

Egg Baked in an Avocado with Sriracha

Here’s what to get from the store:

Avocado
Egg

Egg baked in Avocado

1/2 avocado
1 egg
Salt, Pepper, Paprika, Tumeric
Sriracha

  1. Crack your egg into the hole from the avocado pit. Season with salt, pepper, paprika and tumeric. Bake in a 425 degree oven for 20 minutes or until egg is set. About 5 minutes before the egg is done, add some sriracha.

Moving is getting closer, I get to look at apartments this Friday. I’m excited and a little freaked out, this is probably the biggest move I’ve made in a while. Sure, college was a little freaky, moving to Valpo was a little bit of a risk, but Chicago is a big city. I don’t really think I could fail, I work to hard for that, but I’m always a little worried about bills. I’m already thinking about getting another job when I move up. Cause I’m crazy. I can’t wait to be up where most of my friends are.

 

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Pesto Chango!

Posted on March 3, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

I wasn’t expecting to cook a ton this week, since I’m gone next week and didn’t want to have a ton of leftovers stewing in my fridge. That, and I finally get to meet my friend Katie’s 6 month old daughter on Friday, and we always cook. She and her husband are doing a vegan diet now so I know we’ll have fun cooking.

I realized that I’m probably not eating all of the calories that I need to day to day. Last night at work, I wanted to bring some soup Mark and Laurel had brought me, but I changed my mind and didn’t. I went through my shift after only eating my spinach salad, which is maybe 300 calories. I was going to treat myself to a pasta dish from the B’s, but we were so slow, the kitchen closed before I could get some. I then ended up meeting friends up for drinks…and I had nachos. Either way, I still hadn’t eaten enough.

After craving pasta all day yesterday, I decided to make some at home. While in the shower, I had an idea to make an avocado spinach pesto. I feel I’d seen something like it online somewhere, but this recipe is all my own. That being said I measured…nothing. Sorry, I’m really bad at that.

That being said, this recipe is still pretty easy and very good for you. The pasta isn’t the best, but whole wheat is a better option than the more refined white pasta. Not going to lie, it took me a while to get used to it.

Whole Wheat Pasta with Avocado Spinach Pesto

Here’s what to get from the store:

Avocado
Spinach
Orange Bell Pepper
Button Mushrooms
Flax
Lemon Juice
Black Beans
Onion
Feta

Avocado Spinach Pesto

1/2 avocado
Handful Spinach
3 cloves garlic, peeled
About 1/4 cup flax seeds
Lemon Juice
Olive Oil
Salt, pepper, paprika, red pepper flakes
1/4 chunk of Orange bell pepper, diced
1 tbsp red onion, diced
2 button mushrooms, diced
Black Beans
Feta

  1. In a food processor, put the avocado, spinach, garlic, flax and spices. Start blending and then add the juice and oil. There should be more oil than lemon. Scrape and taste to adjust, it should be almost creamy.
  2. In a saute pan, saute the onion until fragrant, then add the pepper and mushrooms, with more salt and pepper. Add the pesto, black beans and mix. Add cooked pasta and toss to coat. Serve topped with feta cheese.

I’m kind of over this up and down weather, I’m really glad I haven’t gotten sick with all the ups and downs.

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Hummus? You Barely Know Us!

Posted on February 18, 2016. Filed under: Appitizers, Uncategorized | Tags: , , |

According to Facebook, 8 years ago yesterday, my college roommate, Katie and I cooked all the food. For not that many people. I get like that sometimes, I start cooking and I can’t stop. Yesterday was another one of those days. I used only half of the sweet potato for my frittatas, and I didn’t want to just leave the rest of it.

So, I decided to make chips. And with chips, I need something to dip the chips in. I have a bad addiction to dipping things. I get made fun of at one of my jobs because I’ll get fries and about 6 different sauces. Anyway, I had seen avocado hummus online before and had all the ingredients, so why not?

This is very easy to make, and very healthy. The chips are oven baked and everything in hummus is good for you, packed with protein and fiber.

Garam Masala Spiced Sweet Potato Chips with Siracha Lime Avocado Hummus

Here’s what to get from the store:

Sweet Potato
Garam Masala
Chickpeas
Avocado
Lime
Tahini

Garam Masala Spiced Sweet Potato Chips

1 sweet potato
Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper, Garam Masala, Tumeric

  1. Slice the sweet potato into rounds using your mandoline, if you have one. Toss them in the oil and spices and spread on a baking sheet.
  2. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes, making sure to stir. The thinner you cut the chips, the more crispy they will get, but make sure not to burn them!

Siracha Lime Avocado Hummus

1 1/2 avocado (you can use 1, I had a half lying around)
1 can chickpeas
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp tahini
Juice of 1 lime
Salt, Pepper
Siracha

  1. In your food processor, dump the can of chickpeas (liquid included), the avocado, garlic, tahini and lime juice. Blend until smooth, then add seasonings and siracha. Blend again, then taste to adjust seasonings.

I may have over done my yoga last night, my back is very sore today. It’s not awful, it’s kind of nice.

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Taco….Thursday?

Posted on September 4, 2015. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

..What, it works, right? I actually have tacos on Tuesday, but that’s besides the point.

I was talking wit a co worker the other day and telling her how I don’t buy meat to keep my grocery bill down. Her response was “Aren’t vegetables expensive?” That made me realize that most people still assume that eating healthy is still really expensive. It doesn’t have to be. My grocery bill is between $30 and $50 a week, depending on if I buy beer and what I’m making for the week. That gets me about a week and a half worth breakfast (banana), the salad I eat most days, and another dinner that gets me at least two servings. The expensive part of eating healthy is really all the processed foods that claim their health; I can get more fruits and veggies for what I would spend on the other processed foods; I feel way better, AND I eat pretty good.

I had a real problem coming up with what I wanted to make this week. Normally I know what I want for the next meal as soon as I’ve finished the first. Tuesday came around and all I could think of was “TACOS”. I don’t know if I’ve seen this recipe on Pinterest somewhere or what, but the idea of sweet potato tacos sounded amazing.

This recipe takes some time, but if you prep all your ingredients before you start cooking, that will help streamline your process.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos with home made tortilla chips and roasted salsa

Here’s what to get from the store:

Sweet Potato
Black Beans
Goat Cheese
Jalepeno
Avocado
Lemon
Greek Yogurt
Tomato
Poblano
Red Onion

Avocado Cream

1/2 Avocado
1/2 cup (or more) of unflavored Greek Yogurt
1 tsp lemon zest
Juice from 1/2 lemon
Salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne, cilantro

  1. Mash the avocado in a bowl, add the yogurt, lemon juice and zest, and spices. Mix until incorporated. Taste to adjust flavor.

Roasted Poblano Salsa

1 Poblano
2 Jalepeno
2 tbsp red onion
4 tomatoes
Salt, Pepper

  1. Slice the tomato, arrange on a cookie sheet and cover it with olive oil, salt and pepper. Roast in the oven at 325 for 10 minutes, or until almost cooked through. Place in a bowl.
  2. Roast the peppers over the burner until cooked through, dice and add to the tomatoes.
  3. Add the onion and spices, mix, and put in a ball jar.

Tortilla Chips

4 tortillas, cut into 8ths
Olive Oil
Salt, pepper, paprika

  1. Cover the tortilla chips with oil and seasons, arrange on a cookie sheet, and cook in the oven at 325 for 10 minutes, or until browned.

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos

1 sweet potato, cut into chunks
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp onion, diced
Splash of Triple Sec
Splash of Orange Juice
Salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne, cilantro
Black Beans
Spinach
Avocado Cream
Tortillas
Goat Cheese
1 jalapeno, diced

  1. Saute the potato until almost cooked through. Add half the onion onion and garlic.
  2. Once the onion and garlic are cooked through, add a splash of triple sec and orange juice. Cover the pan and continue to cook through.
  3. While the potatoes are finishing cooking, warm the tortillas in a skillet so they are easier to use.
  4. Build the taco: black beans on the bottom, sweet potatoes, onion, jalapeno, spinach, goat cheese, and avocado cream. Serve with tortilla chips and salsa.

Shawn recently started going to a personal trainer and she and I were talking about how our bodies have been changing thanks to the exercising. She’s noticed muscles that have been forming and how clothes have been fitting different. She’s always been tiny, but now her muscles are growing in different ways. I’ve been noticing the same thing and I’m still in awe at how much my body has been changing. The human body is a pretty cool thing.

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Burns so good!

Posted on March 9, 2015. Filed under: Appitizers | Tags: , , |

For some reason, I refuse to go grocery shopping until after my shift tonight. (Probably because I didn’t want to get up earlier than 11..don’t be too jealous) That being said, I used the last of my spinach last night, so a salad was out, and a smoothie just isn’t a full meal. I did, however, still have a few jalapenos from the last time I went shopping. I had wanted to make jalapeno poppers for a while, but just never got around to it. So why not today, right?

In true form, I wanted to only use things I had in my apartment, kind of like a weird version of Chopped. I didn’t have much, but I DID have some quiona and left over Mexican cheese blend from the fish tacos I made a week ago.

I’m not saying when you make this you have to use stuff that you don’t have to buy, but it’s always fun to see what you can make with what you have. As a society we’ve become so used to throwing out food we don’t finish, and that’s just not good. It’s wasteful and there are people who barely get what a lot of us do. I’ve been trying to only get things that I will use completely, and I challenge you to do the same. This recipe is a result of that, and I’m sure there are things in your cabinets that can make something yummy.

Quiona Stuffed Jalapeno Poppers

Here’s what to get from the store (If you don’t have it)

Jalapeno
Quiona
Mayo
Avocado
Mexican blend cheese

Quiona Stuffed Jalapeno

4 jalapeno
1 cup quiona
3 cloves garlic
1 tbsp diced onion
1/4 cup shredded cheese
1/4 cup mayo
1/2 avocado
Salt and pepper

  1. Put the quiona in a pot with some water to soak, about 15 minutes, before turning on the burner. Bring to a simmer and let cook until fluffy.
  2. While this is going, cut your jalapeno in half length wise and scrape the seeds out of the inside.
  3. Once the quiona is finished, add it to a bowl with the garlic, onion, salt, pepper, cheese and mix. Put the mixture into each jalapeno and put them in a 8 x 8 baking dish, or any dish that would help the peppers not fall over. Cook in an oven at 350 for 20 minutes or until the quiona starts to brown on top and the peppers become soft.
  4. While that is cooking, make the mayo. You can either put everything in a food processor if your avocado is a little on the hard side, or mix it in a bowl until smooth. Season with salt and pepper and serve on top of the jalapeno.

You can either have this as a whole meal, or serve it as an appetizer if you’re having game day. It’s a healthier version of the normal poppers but still have a ton of flavor.

The last bit of food you have in your fridge can be daunting, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do something with it. Get out of your comfort zone and experiment a little, if it doesn’t work out, that’s just a learning experience and that’s just as helpful.

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Mmmm cheese

Posted on December 30, 2014. Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , |

If you know me, you know I have a crazy love of cheese and a bad addiction to Mexican Queso Blanco. I’ve been wanting to get Mexican food for a while, but in my mind that’s a social thing, so I decided to make my own at home. It seems no matter what I do, I can’t replicate the flavors I want, but what I made tonight was pretty tasty.

I asked for a double boiler for Christmas (for some reason mom and dad had a hard time finding one, why wouldn’t stores have them? Makes no sense) so I decided to make my own Queso Blanco in that and make an avocado quesidilla. I ended up adding more half and half than the dip recipe calls for, but here I’m just putting the exact recipe this website provided. I also added garlic powder, but, come on, I love the stuff. The quesidilla is my own creation that was inspired by something I think I saw on Twitter. Both recipes make a decent amount so you can make these for a party or a group dinner. Enjoy!

Queso Blanco
(From Food.com)

1 cup monterey jack cheese or 1 cup asadero cheese or 1 cup chihuahua cheese, shredded fine
4 ounces green chilies
1/4 cup half-and-half
2 tablespoons onions, chopped fine
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 serrano pepper, chopped fine (optional)
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped fine (optional)

  1. Put all ingredients in a double boiler and heat on medium.
  2. Cook until melted and well blended, stirring occasionally.
  3. Serve with fresh tostadas or hot flour tortillas.

Avocado Quesidilla

1 avocado, sliced
Refried Beans
Montery Jack Cheese, shredded
Roma Tomato, diced
1 Tbsp Red Onion, chopped
1/2 Jalapeno, Chopped and deseeded
Salt, pepper and garlic powder to taste
2 Burrito sized flour tortillas

  1. Spread refried beans on one side of each tortilla. Layer tomato, avocado, onion, spices, jalapeno and cheese in that order on one tortilla, add the other tortilla on top to make a sandwich. Brown both sides in either a quesidilla maker or a skillet until cheese is melted. Serves 2.

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Queso, what would I do without you?

Posted on August 14, 2012. Filed under: Dining | Tags: , , |

There are very few foods I crave almost all the time. Triskits being one, and queso dip being another. But not just ANY queso dip. El Amigo’s queso dip is my favorite. El Amigo is a small Mexican restaurant on north Calumet here in Valpo. I guess there’s a few of them, but the one here in town is the only one I’ve been to. I also go only later at night, but that’s a different story. There’s just something about that dip that keeps me coming back. It’s the perfect liquid consistency and the perfect seasoning. The chips are even perfect. Normally I like my chips salty, but you don’t need to add any salt to these because the dip has the perfect amount. I have some in my fridge right now, it warms up to the exact same even after sitting in the fridge.

Besides their queso, the rest of their food is pretty fantastic. The menu has more than just the stereotypical Mexican food you find here in America. I remember the first time I got a gordita from there I was expecting a Taco Bell style, man was I wrong. It’s a lot more messy, but has a lot more flavor. My favorite item from there (besides the queso) is their avocado burrito. I love avocado  in pretty much every form, and it goes really well in a burrito. It’s not hot like normal burrito, but it doesn’t need to be. The flavors mix together perfectly and you don’t miss the meat.

I know, I haven’t really written much about food lately. I was going to write about Pass Times, but since it doesn’t exist anymore I don’t feel like that’s a good idea. That, and with the events in the past few weeks I haven’t really felt like cooking, baking, or writing about food. But, I have to break in my new Kitchen Aid so I gotta bake something! I also want to make some more ice cream (and NOT over churn it this time, learned my lesson, don’t turn it on then take a shower!) . I’m trying to get back into the swing of things again instead of just sleeping and going to work. It’s a weird process.

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