En-CURR-A

Posted on February 22, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Again, I’m hilarious. Get on the pun wagon.

I’ve learned a decent amount in the past few days that I’ve been eating vegan. 1: When I give up cheese and the like, I accidentally give up crabs. 2: I can still control myself at work around cheesy garlic bread (my most favorite thing there) I did slip up today because Kati wanted to get Pho and I had some beef egg rolls with her. I had veggie Pho, however. (I actually like that better)

The past 4 days have been extra warm in Chicago. Like, around 40-50 degrees over the norm. Because of that, I’ve been able to pick up extra shifts serving on the patio at work. Yes, we’ve had people eating outside. Last night I got home and was STARVING. I had eaten my salad during work, but you run around for 9 hours, you’re going to be hungry. I had a half of a can of coconut milk left from the satay, and thought I’d do a quick curry. While it was simmering, I realized I needed some sort of carb, so I added rice.

This curry is super easy, full of fiber and protein. When you’re not eating meat, you need to make sure you have enough protein, and what better way than black beans and tofu? The longest part of this recipe will be making the rice, so don’t worry if you’re in a rush.

Quick Veggie Curry

Here’s what to get from the store:

Coconut Milk
Tofu
Black Beans
Brussels Sprouts
Broccoli
Jasmine Rice
Red Chili Paste

 

Quick Veggie Curry

1/2 cup cubed tofu
1/4 cup black beans
4 cloves garlic, diced
4 Brussels sprouts, chopped
1/4 cup diced broccoli
1/2 can coconut milk
1/4 tsp red chili paste
Salt, pepper, turmeric, paprika
Cooked Jaime Rice

  1. Sauté your garlic until mostly cooked, add the broccoli and sprouts, cook until bright green. Add salt and pepper.
  2. Add the black beans and tofu with some turmeric and sauté until the tofu is browned.
  3. Add the coconut milk and chili paste and bring to a simmer. Taste to adjust seasonings. Serve over cooked rice.

I’m really glad to have started working more again. I am partially grateful to mother nature for this, but this does make me more concerned for climate change. Even if you don’t believe climate change exists, please be more careful with the environment, it’s the only one we have.

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You Sat-ay right there

Posted on February 17, 2017. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

I crack myself up guys.

After gaining about 10 pounds in the past 6 months, I had to kick myself in the butt. Part of the gain was because my eating habits, and part of it was drinking. So yesterday I decided to be completely vegan for a week, and to cut down my drinking. Luckily since I eat a mostly vegetarian diet anyway, the only thing I have to really cut out is cheese (tragic) and switch the Greek yogurt in my smoothie to peanut butter.

I had originally wanted to make a stir fry with a Tahini sauce, but when I went to Jewel today and it took me along time to find the Thaini sauce (why was it with the Italian stuff?) that I decided to make peanut satay sauce instead.

I know I’ve probably said this before, but most food from Asian countries is kind of awesome for the vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. They generally don’t have milk so you never have to worry about sauces, and they tend to use a lot more vegetables than we do in Western cultures.

Satay sauce is SUPER easy. It can be a little calorie dense, thanks to it being coconut milk based, but it’s still pretty good and you can choose how much to eat.

 

Here’s what to get from the store:

Coconut milk
Peanut butter
Red curry paste
Apple Cider Vinegar
Broccoli
Brussels sprouts
Mushrooms

Thai Peanut Satay Sauce
(From Rasa Malaga)

1/2 cp peanut butter
3/4 cp coconut milk
2 tbsp red curry paste
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
2 tbsp ground peanut
Salt to taste

  1. Put everything except the ground peanut into a sauce pan, bring to a boil and stir until combined. Top with the ground peanut.

Veggie Stir Fry

Broccoli, diced
Mushrooms, diced
1 small onion, diced
Brussels sprouts, diced
4 cloves garlic, diced
Tofu, diced
Satay sauce

  1. Sauté the vegetables until cooked, add as much of the satay sauce as you would like.

I know, these were super easy, but that’s kind of the point. There was a guy on a dating site who said he liked cooking vegetarian because he said it was harder. As someone who does that all the time, I disagree. Cooking without meat makes things a lot easier, vegetables cook a lot faster, and if you do under cook them, they won’t kill you. The most important part about cooking vegetarian or vegan is to use the right spices. Spices are very important for any meal, and they don’t add any calories. Some spices have added health benefits, and there’s nothing wrong with that. Vegan Saute with Peanut Satay Sauce

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Is that corn?

Posted on September 6, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

One day at work, one of my coworkers came up to me and said “Hey, call David over here and ask him, is this corn?” Ever since then, we’ve been throwing bad corn puns back and forth at each other. They’re awful and I love it.

Because of that, I’ve been thinking about corn recipes recently. Ok, I actually had a cold or something over the weekend and I wanted a squash soup, but it’s only about 1000 degrees outside so soup was a no go. I was trying to figure out what I wanted to make while walking around Aldi and saw some great zucchini right next to some corn cobs and decided to do a warm salad. I really just wanted something simple, I was starving after my excersice and that seemed like the easiest and healthiest thing to make.

This recipe is very easy, and it’s 100% vegan. It barely takes any time at all and it will fill you up.

Roasted Veggie Salad with Quiona and Kale

Here’s what to get from the store:

Zucchini
Corn on the cob
Broccoli
Asparagus
Quiona
Black Beans
Tomato
Kale

Roasted Veggie and Quiona Salad

1 zucchini, sliced
1 cob of corn, with the corn taken off
5 florets of fresh broccoli6-10 pieces of asparagus, depending on size, diced
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 cup cooked quiona
1 Roma tomato, diced
1/2 cup diced kale
Salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika

  1. On a cookie sheet with sides or a 9 x 10 pan, place the zucchini, corn (an easy way to cut it off the cob is to place an upside down bowl in another bowl and cut down the sides), broccoli, asparagus and broccoli. Cover it all in a drizzle of olive oil and season with salt, pepper, cayenne and paprika. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes, stirring about half way through.
  2. When the veggies are done roasting, place them in a saute pan with the quinoa and black beans. Saute with more seasoning until the beans are warm. Remove from heat and add the kale to wilt it. Serve topped with a diced Roma tomato.

I’ve been here for a little over a month, and I haven’t really hung out with as many people as I thought I was going to. So I’ve been spending a lot more time at home than I thought. It’s not ideal, but I’m dealing with it. Making friends when you’re an adult is hard.

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Toothless

Posted on June 2, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

Last week was rough. I worked 4 shifts at each job AND had the last 3 of my wisdom teeth pulled. Needless to say, I didn’t have time to cook before the extraction and I couldn’t eat real food for a few days after. (Ok, I tried rice, tofu and veggies on Saturday, tofu and rice were easy, veggies not so much. Oh, and I had cheesecake, cause it’s soft).

So, clearly I’ve been itching to cook something. I had been thinking about a quiona pizza crust for a while. I had originally wanted to top it with graffiti eggplant, but it went bad before I could use it. So instead I took the last of my parents broccoli, made a sauce of that, and topped it with mushrooms and bell pepper. I was really pleased with the result. (I made it for tomorrow, but I had to test it tonight, duh)

This recipe is actually very easy, there is some downtime but it doesn’t really effect you at all. Everything in this recipe is very good for you, and full of fiber. It should fill you up for a decent amount of time.

Quiona Pizza Crust topped with Coconut Curried Broccoli Sauce, Bell Pepper, Mushroom, Goat and Feta Cheese

Here’s what to get from the store:

Quiona
Baking Powder
Broccoli
Bell Pepper
Button Mushrooms
Garam Masala
Coconut Milk

Quiona Pizza Crust
(From Cooking Light)

3/4 cup uncooked quinoa
1/4 cup water, plus more for soaking quinoa
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
  1. Cover the quiona in water and soak for at least 6 hours.
  2. Drain the quiona and add 1/4 cup water, the baking powder and salt to your food processor and process until smooth.
  3. Place into a greased round cake pan and cook at 425 for 15 minutes. Flip the crust over and cook for another 5-10 minutes. Top with desired toppings and bake until cheese is melted.

Coconut Curried Broccoli Sauce

1 cup cooked broccoli
1/2 can coconut milk
1/4 tsp Red Curry Paste
Salt, Pepper, Garam Masala, Tumeric, Cayenne Pepper

  1. Place everything in the blender and blend until smooth. Place on the pizza crust and top with bell pepper, sliced mushrooms, goat cheese and feta cheese.

Not only did I not have time to cook last week, I didn’t have time practice my yoga last week. I missed it quite a bit. I was finally able to start again yesterday and I am so glad. I felt my life was slightly miss balanced. Yoga brought me balance. Find a way to find your own balance.

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I’m out of corny jokes

Posted on April 14, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , |

Or I just can’t think of any for this for some reason.

I don’t know what it is about showers, but they can be very inspiring. Sunday before work while I was taking a shower, I thought “Polenta” I’m not sure if I’ve ever had it, and I’ve never made it, but it can’t be that hard, right? Right, it’s actually super easy.

Surprisingly, it’s also vegan if you don’t use cheese. It’s not the most healthy thing on the face of the planet, but you just have to watch your portion size. It is also pretty light in flavor, which lends itself very well to other flavors.

This whole recipe is very easy, I’m not going to include the sauteed broccoli and tomatoes, just the polenta and the sauce. The polenta does take some time, about 45 minutes, but that’s about it.

Polenta topped with broccoli, tomatoes and a Blackberry Balsamic Mushroom sauce. (And a broken Poached Egg)

Here’s what to get from the store:

Cornmeal
Shredded Cheese (Optional)
Blackberry Wine
Balsamic Vinegar
Button Mushrooms
Red Onion

Polenta

5 cups water
1 cup cornmeal
Salt, pepper
Shredded Cheese (Optional)

  1. Place the water with a teaspoon of salt in a large pot on the stove. Add the cornmeal and stir. Bring the mixture to a boil, making sure to stir. Once the mixture has thickened, lower the heat and let cook. Make sure to stir every once in a while. The grains will be swollen and taste like corn.

Blackberry Balsamic Mushroom Sauce

3 button mushrooms, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
1/4 red onion, diced
1 cup blackberry wine
1 cup balsamic vinegar
Salt, black and red pepper, paprika, ground mustard

  1. Saute the onions with salt and pepper until fragrant. Add the mushrooms and garlic, saute until the garlic is cooked.
  2. Deglaze the pan with the wine and bring to a rolling boil. Add the vinegar and spices, and let reduce by about half. Taste to adjust seasonings. Serve over the polenta with sauteed broccoli and tomatoes.

My last day at the wing place was a little bitter sweet. While I had been there for 6 years, most of the crew was no longer the same, they didn’t feel like the family I had first gotten to know there. I know that I had been drifting from them for a while; just as they had been drifting from themselves, but the money was so addicting. I’m glad to finally be able to move on to better things. My move is becoming more real and I am so excited. Now all I need is for apartments with July availability to start showing up.

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Spicy Squash

Posted on April 1, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

When I was getting ready to go home after spending time with my parents on Easter, mom noticed she forgot to give my sister a spaghetti squash, so I took it home. Along with another bag of broccoli…I think there’s only 2 left in the freezer from last season. (I gave my dad purple broccoli seeds for Christmas, so I’m hoping for a rainbow.)

I’d seen recipes for the squash many times before, but I had never thought about eating it. Not sure why, just never appealed to me. Now, since I had a whole one, I decided to make something. I learned very quickly that either I need a new knife, or that squash is just REALLY hard to open. I ended up hacking off the top and sticking my knife in that part and hitting the squash against my cutting board until the knife went through.

This recipe is easy (besides getting the squash open) but the squash does take a long time to cook. It’s on the harder side of the squashes so baking time is almost an hour. Luckily though, after it’s cooked, everything goes by very quickly. This is a very healthy recipe and is also vegan, so eat away!

Chili Spiced Spaghetti Squash with Asparagus, Broccoli and Spinach

Here’s what to get from the store:

Spaghetti Squash
Asparagus
Broccoli
Orange Bell Pepper
Garlic Chili Sauce
Fresh Spinach

Chili Spiced Spaghetti Squash with Veggies

1 Spaghetti Squash, halved and seeded
Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper, Paprika, Tumeric, Garam Masala
5-6 stalks asparagus, diced
Few florets fresh broccoli, diced
1/4 orange bell pepper, cubed
2 cloves garlic, diced
1/4 cup diced red onion
Hand full of spinach
Garlic Chili Sauce
Black Beans

  1. Drizzle the squash with olive oil, salt and pepper. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 45 minutes. About half way through, add paprika, tumeric and the garam masala. Once the squash is fork soft, pull from the oven and let cool.
  2. While the squash is cooling, saute the onions until fragrant. Add the garlic and bell pepper and cook till soft.Make sure to season with salt, pepper and tumeric.  Add the asparagus and broccoli and saute until bright green. Add some garlic chili sauce and let simmer. (Be careful not to add too much, this sauce is spicy!)
  3. The squash should be cool enough to touch, run a fork through the squash to get the cooked meat from the shell. Add that to the veggies,along with the spinach and stir. Let the spinach wilt. Taste to adjust seasonings, then serve topped with black beans.

Today I start my training at Pizzeria Uno in the city. This is the first job that I’ve been hired as a bartender from the start. I still have to prove myself to everyone else, but I know I can. This is the first step to moving and I’m very excited. I will be sad to leave the wing place; I only have 3 shifts left there, but it is time to move on. The friends I made there will always still be there.

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Twice the Fun!

Posted on March 20, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

You guys thought I forgot about you, did you? Last week I was on vacation and I came straight home to an 8 shift week. (I was originally scheduled 5..). Vacation was great…but…I gained a few pounds. We ate out more than I thought we were going to and I noticed it.

I came back and decided I had to fix that. This past week I upped my veggie intake and added a spinach and banana smoothie to my breakfast. The few extra pounds are gone, and my energy is back. (By the end of vacation I was a little run down. I only had time to go through my yoga practice once and it was obvious)

All week I was thinking about doing something for St. Paddy’s day, but I didn’t really want to do anything traditional. I’ve never really been super into white potatoes, but I’ve always loved sweet potatoes. They have a lot more flavor, and you can do quite a bit to them. Because of this, I decided to do a twice baked stuffed sweet potato.

Sweet potatoes are great because they have the extra beta carotene that white potatoes don’t have. Yes, they do have the extra sugar, but adding the right spices makes a really cool sweet and spicy flavor.

This recipe is pretty easy, but it does take a lot of time. Since there is a ton of down time, I went through my yoga practice while the potato was in the oven the first time, and let it cool while the quinoa was cooking. This recipe isn’t vegan, but to make it vegan, all you have to do is not put the cheddar on top.

Twice Baked Stuffed Sweet Potato

Here’s what to get from the store:

Sweet potato
Asparagus
Fresh Broccoli
Quinoa
Aged Irish Cheddar (Optional)

Twice Baked Sweet Potato

1 large sweet potato
3 pieces asparagus, diced
3 broccoli florets, diced
1 tbsp chopped red onion
2 cloves garlic, diced
1/4 cup quinoa
Salt, pepper, Tumeric, Cayenne
Block of Irish Cheddar (Optional)

  1. Cut your sweet potato in half length wise. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 50-60 minutes, or until cooked through. About 30 minutes in, sprinkle with salt and pepper.Set aside and let cool.
  2. While the potato is cooling, cook the quinoa until fluffy, about 20 minutes.
  3. Once the potato is cool, scoop out the middle, making sure not to break the skin.
  4. In a saute pan, saute the onion until fragrant. Add the asparagus, broccoli, garlic and spices and cook until bright green. Add the quinoa and sweet potato and mix. Taste to adjust seasoning.
  5. Put the mixture back into the shells and top with the shredded cheese, if you like. Bake for another 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven.

I’ve started working pretty hard to get ready for my move in July. I’m excited to finally be back in Illinois. While Indiana has been nice, I know the city is where I belong.

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Naan Naan Naan Naan Naan….

Posted on February 5, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

Winter is a slow time of the year for the restaurant business. People get their credit card bills from Christmas and freak out, and up here, the weather blows and no one wants to go out. So the result of that is I’m working a little less. But, because of the weather, I haven’t really been going out. (I hate cold. Hate. Hate.Hate)

I was trying to figure out what I was going to cook this week, and for a while was coming up blank. But, some time on Pinterest kept showing me a bunch of curry recipies and I couldn’t say no to that.

The first time I had Indian food was in high school. My boyfriend at the time and his mom took me. They didn’t tell me what I was eating and I had NO CLUE. That made it hard to figure out if I even liked it. After that, I didn’t go until Shawn decided I needed to give the cuisine another try. She knew what she was eating and we had some great stuff. I became sort of addicted to Tikka Masala and Naan bread. And samosas, those things are fabulous.

Tikka Masala is a tomato based sauce flavored with garam masala, along with other spices. I didn’t want to use a recipe for the dish this time (I did for the naan) because I wanted to play around with different stuff.

Vegan Tikka Masala with Tumeric Tofu and Naan

Here’s what to get from the store:

Garam Masala (Had to go to Whole Foods)
Tofu
Tomato Sauce
Coconut milk
Chickpeas
Broccoli
Mushrooms
Jasmine Rice
Yeast

Naan
(From Food Network)

1 teaspoon active dry yeast
2 teaspoons sugar
2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling, see Cook’s Note*
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
3 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Melted butter for slathering on the finished naans
Coarse sea salt for sprinkling
  1. In a large glass, dissolve the dry yeast and 1 teaspoon sugar with 3/4 cup warm water (about 100 degrees F). Let it sit on your counter until it’s frothy, about 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, sift the flour, salt, remaining 1 teaspoon of sugar and baking powder into a large, deep bowl.
  3. Once the yeast is frothy, add the yogurt and the olive oil into the glass, and stir to combine. Pour the yogurt mixture into the dry ingredients, and gently mix the ingredients together with a fork. When the dough is about to come together, use your hands to mix. It will feel like there isn’t enough flour at first, but keep going until it transforms into a soft, slightly sticky and pliable dough. As soon as it comes together, stop kneading. Cover the dough with plastic wrap or a damp tea towel and let it sit in a warm, draft-free place for 2 to 4 hours.
  4. When you’re ready to roll, make sure you have two bowls on your counter: one with extra flour in it, and one with water. The dough will be extremely soft and sticky-this is good! Separate the dough into 6 equal portions and lightly roll each one in the bowl of extra flour to keep them from sticking to each other.
  5. Shape the naan. Using a rolling pin, roll each piece of dough into a teardrop shape, narrower at the top than at the bottom. It should be 8 to 9-inches long, 4-inches wide at its widest point and about 1/4-inch thick. Once you’ve formed the general shape, you can also pick it up by one end and wiggle it; the dough’s own weight will stretch it out a little. Repeat this method with the rest of the dough. (If you’re making the gluten-free version, you’ll have better luck pressing the dough out with your fingertips, than rolling.)
  6. Warm a large cast-iron skillet over high heat until it’s nearly smoking. Make sure you have a lid large enough to fit the skillet and have a bowl of melted butter at the ready.
  7. Dampen your hands in the bowl of water and pick up one of your naans, flip-flopping it from one hand to the other to lightly dampen it. Gently lay it in the skillet and set your timer for 1 minute. The dough should start to bubble.
  8. After about 1 minute, flip the naan. It should be blistered and somewhat blackened, don’t worry – that’s typical of traditional naan! Cover the skillet with the lid and cook 30 seconds to 1 minute more.
  9. Remove the naan from the skillet, brush with a bit of butter and sprinkle with a little coarse sea salt. Place the naan in a tea towel-lined dish. Repeat with the rest of the naans and serve.

 

Vegan Tikka Masala

1/4 red onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, diced
3 mushrooms, chopped
3 new potatoes, diced
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 15 oz can coconut milk
1 15 oz can chickpeas
Handfull Cooked Broccoli
Garam Masala, Tumeric, Corriander, Cummin, Salt, Pepper
Tofu, cubed
Cooked Jasmine Rice

  1. In a skillet with high walls, saute the onion until translucent. Add the garlic, saute some more, and add salt, pepper, and garam masala
  2. Add the potatoes and mushrooms, season some more and saute.
  3. Add the tomato sauce and coconut milk, season a little more, and bring to a boil, then a simmer.
  4. While the sauce is simmering, saute the tofu with salt, pepper, tumeric and cumin until crispy.
  5. Serve over spiced Jasmine rice topped with the tofu and naan on the side.

Last week, my friend Maureen went into the hospital because of a blood clot. The Drs and nurses worked very hard and saved her life. She is doing much better and hopefully will go home soon. I was able to visit her and her devoted husband on Monday and was very glad how well she was doing. I’m constantly reminded of how short life can be, but how strong humans can be.

I’ve had a lot of energy this week, which is great, but then I can’t get to sleep early, which stinks. But I’ve been really happen and that’s all that matters.

 

 

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Crustin

Posted on January 27, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

This time of year I see a TON of advertisements for weight loss support groups, apps, diet plans, ect. A lot of them suggest counting either points or calories or whatever. From personal experience, that doesn’t really work that well. When I was using a calorie counter, I’d see that I had worked off X amount of calories in my workout, then would eat as much as I burned. Not really a good plan.

The plan should be to teach you how to make better choices and how to balance what you do eat. I’ve actually gotten to the point where I crave healthy stuff instead of the unhealthy stuff. Yesterday I bought gelato, cause my hormones were asking for it, but I didn’t open it. This didn’t come overnight though, it took a long time.

Every time I see my parents now, my mom asks if I want some more frozen broccoli and tomatoes. I’m pretty convinced that they could have supplied a grocery store with tomatoes and broccoli this past season…

I only took broccoli this time, and decided I wanted to try out one of those “pizza” crusts with it. It was very easy to make, but I didn’t grease the pan, so it didn’t want to come off the foil (my fault). Other than that, it was pretty good. Broccoli doesn’t have to strong of a flavor so topping it was pretty easy.

If you’re looking to cut carbs, this would be a good way to do it with adding some extra vitamins into your dish.

Broccoli "Crust" Pizza Topped with Yellow Squash, Asparagus, Mushrooms and Shallots in Baslmic Reduction

Here’s what to get from the store:

Broccoli
Parmesan Cheese
Yellow Squash
Asparagus
Button Mushrooms
Shallots
Balsamic

Broccoli “Pizza” Crust

1 cup broccoli
1 egg
Parmesan Cheese
3 cloves garlic
1 shallot, chopped
Asparagus, chopped and blanched
1 Yellow Squash, diced and sauteed
3 Button Mushrooms, sliced
Balsamic Vinegar

  1. Pulse the broccoli in a food processor until it is chopped as much as possible. Add one of the cloves of garlic and process some more.
  2. Put the broccoli in some paper towels to squeeze out as much of the water as possible.
  3. In a bowl, mix the broccoli with one egg, and some Parmesan cheese. Season with salt and pepper.
  4. Spread onto a greased cookie sheet to resemble a pizza crust.
  5. Cook in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes, or when the edges start to brown.
  6. While the crust is in the oven, saute the shallots and garlic until fragrant. Add just enough Balsamic vinegar to cover the onions, and let reduce.
  7. When the crust comes out of the oven, add your toppings, finishing with the reduction and some more cheese. Put back into the oven to melt the cheese. Cut into pizza slices and enjoy!

I’ve upped the intensity of my yoga practice recently. I can actually get into a triangle head stand and I’m trying to not use the wall. The result are some very sore shoulders, but it’s a great feeling. I’m trying to flatten my stomach out just a little more before Shawn and I go to L.A in March, and I think I can do it.

I’m coming up on my year mark of my yoga practice, and I’m proud of myself. It was an amazing decision to start and I am much healthier because of it. Whatever you decide to do should make you feel just as great as my yoga makes me feel. Don’t give up.

 

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Can’t Tuna Fish

Posted on January 15, 2016. Filed under: Main Course, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , |

There’s a show I watch on TLC called My 600 lb Life. It follows one person per episode in a year long journey to get down to a healthy weight. Something I’ve noticed about every since one of those people is that they have such an emotional attachment to food they don’t see that it’s killing them. Most of the time they have family members enabling them in their unhealthy lifestyle. A lot of times they don’t even understand what they’re doing is killing themselves.

The Dr. that helps them makes sure they lose weight before he does a gastric bypass, to make sure that they will be able to make the lifestyle change.  Every episode I watch, the person says “I didn’t know it would be this hard”. It’s very hard, you have to completely change a large part of your life. In the later episodes the Dr. sends them to a psychologist to help them with the underlying problems.

Something they do learn, as I learned, is that eating needs a balance. You need to eat mostly healthy, but until you’ve hit a goal it’s more important to stick to things that are better for you.

With the cold, I’ve wanted some strong comfort food, and a lot of times that leans towards tuna casserole. Problem is, since I limit the amount of processed foods I eat, I wasn’t sure how my stomach would react to the Velveeta, so, I decided to make the cheese sauce. I made fried shallots to put on top. My stomach is not going to be happy, its a lot more grease than I’ve had in a while.

This recipe is not healthy, but it is low processed. (I did put broccoli in it, yeah fiber). It is easy, but it does have a few steps.

Tuna Casserole with Broccoli and Fried Shallots

Here’s what to get from the store:

Shallots
Panko
Buttermilk
Milk
Egg noodles
Tuna
Cornmeal
Shredded cheese
Butter

Tuna Casserole with Broccoli and Fried Shallots

For the Shallots:

2 shallots, diced
Equal parts flour, panko, cornmeal
1 cup buttermilk
Salt, pepper, paprika, cayenne

For the Cheese Sauce

3 tbsp butter
3 tbsp flour
1 shallot, diced
2 cloves garlic, smashed
2 cps milk
2 cps shredded cheese
Siracha
Salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika

For the casserole

Cheese Sauce
Fried Shallots
Egg noodes
1 large can tuna
1 cup cooked broccoli

  1. Put the flour, panko, cornmeal and seasonings in a bowl. Put the buttermilk in a separate bowl. Dip the shallots in the buttermilk, then the flour, then buttermilk and flour again. Fry in a cast iron skillet with canola oil until brown. Put on a paper towel and season with salt. Set aside.
  2. In a skillet, melt the butter and saute the shallots and garlic until fragrant. Add the flour and mix. Once it turns to a light brown, add in the milk and stir. Keep stirring until it starts to thicken up, then add the cheese. (I did sharp cheddar and a cheddar jack blend).
  3. Add the cheese, broccoli and tuna to the cooked noodles. Put in a square pan, top with more cheese and the crispy shallots.
  4. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until the cheese starts bubbling.

I’ve been pushing myself through my yoga recently, and my muscles are actually starting to hurt. It’s kind of great, honestly. Even though my back muscles hurt from learning hand stands, and my hamstrings and sore a lot, I feel amazing. I can feel muscles I never thought I had, and that’s really cool.

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