Posts tagged: sweet potato

A Canon and an Omelet

By Katie, 4:16 pm

Howdy, folks!

I want to take a brief moment and mention this New York Times article on photographing food that Tiffany posted yesterday. It discusses the huge phenomenon that visual food logs have become, and not just within the realm of healthy living blogs. People everywhere are using photos of their eats as a way of documenting their lives.

The article discusses several reasons why this trend has taken off. Some people say it encourages them to be more adventurous in their dietary choices, and others say it serves as a source of motivation and accountability when trying to improve eating habits. Many photograph their food as a way of sharing their culinary talents and cooking ideas, while others enjoy it because a photo of a meal is essentially a photo of a memory.

But the author also notes that the habit can turn ugly; some people, especially those with obsessive-compulsive tendencies, can become consumed by the practice; they freak out if an undocumented morsel passes their lips.

Reading the article was especially interesting for me because I’ve been re-considering the way that I document my eating here on Health for the Whole Self. I have found that most of the time I really enjoy documenting my eats; I love food and eating, I love sharing it with others, and I’m really starting to love photography. However, my current set-up – which documents a specific day’s worth of food – is beginning to threaten my enjoyment of the process because on the days I have designated “photo food days,” I feel obligated to whip out my Canon.

But there’s an even more important issue at play. I’m a bit worried that documenting all of my food on specific days is interfering with my practice of Intuitive Eating. I’ve found that, in honor of the blog, I get ideas for interesting meals and then plan to eat them on a day when I’m photographing all of my eats. But such planning is kind of the opposite of Intuitive Eating, in that it doesn’t allow me to honor my specific cravings in any given moment.

So I’ve decided to change it up just a bit. I’ll still be showing a lot of my food, but the posts may be a bit less structured; they won’t consistently be a play-by-play of everything I ate in a given day. Instead, they’ll be a compilation of meals and snacks that I photographed because doing so appealed to me at that time, or because I truly believed they were worth sharing. So, for example, if dinner was really delicious and I want to share it, I will – even if I haven’t designated that day as a “What I Ate” day. Does that make sense?

I think this structure will actually allow the blog to be a bit more creative, which might be fun! Also, I think it allows me to honor myself and my Intuitive Eating journey while at the same time honoring the purpose of documenting my food in the first place – to share with others what a balanced diet really means to me.

Whew! That got a little longer than I intended, sorry, folks! Congrats if you made it this far.

So here’s my first little compilation of recent eats!

Breakfast

First up – my very first OMELET!!!

Yes, that’s correct, the above omelet is the first one I EVER made! Nothing to ooh and ahh over, I suppose, but not too shabby for my first time! ;-)

I filled it with cheese and tomato slices. Next time I will definitely amp up the VEG!

A side o’ berries.

Lunch

Totally random salad I created at the Wegman’s salad bar yesterday.

Containing:

  • spring mix and Romaine
  • tomatoes
  • cucumber
  • carrots
  • cauliflower
  • broccoli
  • green beans
  • roasted chickpeas
  • pasta salad with a vinegar-based dressing

I added a big dollop of my chunky red bean spread to pump up the protein.

Plus a microwave-baked sweet potato with cinnamon.

Random Snackage

Big bowl of juicy cantaloupe.

Sprinkled with sea salt. Anyone else put salt on their cantaloupe? Everyone in my family does, so I thought it was totally normal until I went to college and my friends informed me that I’m a nuttzo! :lol:

You could win this!

And, in honor of the crazy heat wave my neck of the woods is currently experiencing, some RITA’S!

Gotta run! I’m attending my first session of a Creative Writers Group tonight…EEK! Wish me luck! :-D

If you’re a blogger, do you document all of your food choices? Why or why not?

AND

What’s your favorite flavor of Rita’s? I’m partial to the fruity ones – Twisted Melon and Mango top the list. Although today I heard several people ordering mixtures of two flavors, which I’ve never done before but would like to!

A Day of Ups and Downs

By Katie, 10:22 pm

Hi, everyone! I hope that you had a calm day…which would be the opposite of mine! I can think of no better way to describe my day than a ROLLER COASTER. One that has a lot of hills. And let’s just say that I’m not the biggest fan of amusement parks. :-?

DOWN: Waking up

I slept horribly last night, and ended up staying in bed an hour later than usual. I felt so off that I decided to put off exercising in the hopes that I’d feel a bit more like myself in the afternoon.

UP: Breakfast!

Blueberry Baked Oatmeal!

For some reason I always think of baked oatmeal as a weekend kind of breakfast, but making an individual portion is actually easy and fast enough for a weekday if you play your cards right. If you pop it in the oven before you blow-dry your hair and do your makeup, it will be ready for you at the exact moment you’re ready for it! :-)

My baked oatmeal contained:

  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 1/3 cup plus a bit more almond milk
  • touch of salt
  • cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup frozen blueberries
  • roughly chopped roasted almonds on top

I just mixed everything (except the almonds) together, then baked it at 375º for about 25 minutes. It was lovely!

UP: Shopping and Post-It Notes

I had some random errands to run in the morning, which included purchasing a desperately-needed sports bra. I was literally down to one that fit properly and wasn’t completely stretched out. So now I am at two.

While in the dressing room I posted an Operation Beautiful note. I post them for the benefit of others, but writing the message is a real mood-booster for me too! :-D

DOWN: Lunch

I had big plans to make a really fun lunch today, but I got so hungry while I was out and about that I stopped at Subway. Not that I don’t love Subway! It just wasn’t as exciting as what I thought I’d be eating. Another day, another lunch, I suppose!

That would be a veggie monster: lettuce, tomato, cucumber, banana peppers, sweet peppers, red onion, and honey mustard.

DOWN: Nap and Momma News

I told myself that when I was finished my errands I would immediately come home and do homework. Somehow I ended up on the couch snoring for 45 minutes. :oops:

And then, about 2 minutes after I came to, I got a call that my mom is having emergency laser eye surgery in the morning for a torn retina. :-( We actually don’t know a lot of details because she needs to go to a retina specialist who was out of the office today. But apparently it is crucial that she have the surgery as soon as possible to prevent major damage to her vision. 8-O I immediately rearranged my schedule and will be driving to York to spend the day with her tomorrow. I’d appreciate any prayers and/or positive vibes you could send her way!

UP: Snack

You really can’t go wrong with a LARABAR.

Love this flavor!

DOWN: Run

Ugh, my run was just crappy, one of the worst I’ve had in quite some time. It pretty much stank because:

  • I was overdressed and felt way too hot the entire time.
  • I started out too fast and then had trouble finding my groove.
  • I meant to run 4 miles but miscalculated the route and ended up running a little over 5.
  • I had to deal with numerous catcallers (I’ll save you my full rant, but I will say that the fact that I am running by your construction site is not justification for whistling at me or commenting on my body. :-x )

You win some, you lose some, I guess!

UP: Post-run snack

Apple slices and Pumpkin Seed Kale Crackers that I got at Fitbloggin’ from Pure2Raw!

Fabulous ingredient list.

These were really flavorful! They were so much better than the kinds I sampled at FitBloggin, which I think had onion in them.

I went back for a few more…and by that I mean that half the bag is already gone! ;-)

DOWN: Homework

Enough said.

UP: Receiving word that my friend from college went into labor…can’t wait to get the call that her baby girl has arrived safe and sound! :-)

UP: Dinner!

I love sandwiches, and this one totally rocked. I got the idea from this blog post.

The sandwich was made up of:

  • HOMEMADE (by Dave!) 100% whole wheat bread (we’re seriously considering switching entirely to homemade bread…it tastes so delicious, has no preservatives and only a handful of ingredients, and Dave’s really good at making it!)
  • pureed white beans seasoned with fresh lemon juice, salt, and pepper
  • avocado slices
  • Bibb lettuce
  • alfalfa sprouts

I already can’t wait to re-create this for lunch tomorrow!

On the side, some sweet potato cheetahs! (Note the spots. 8-) )

Ketchup for dipping.

Such a delicious dinner!

UP: Reading other health and fitness blogs and feeling totally inspired and uplifted! :-D

UP: Dessert

Ending it on a sweet note!

Chocolate Fig VitaTop smothered with peanut butter.

Whew! All that up and down motion kind of made me sea sick! ;-)

How do you handle roller coaster days?

AND/OR

Are you a Subway fan? What’s your go-to sub?

Doin’ an Irish Jig

By Katie, 9:38 pm

***Happy St. Patrick’s Day!!!***

I enjoy St. Patty’s Day very much because 1) I married an Irishman and 2) I love the color green. :mrgreen:

There’s a little St. Patrick’s Day fun at the end of this post, but first the FOOD!

Breakfast

Naturally, I began my day with the ultimate green meal.

Today’s green monster was chocolate-infused! It contained:

I’m liking the green and yellow combination I’ve got going on here. And NOT just because those were my wedding colors. ;-)

(Yep, still obsessed with my bouquet!)

Mid-Morning Snack

After breakfast I’d ordinarily do a workout, but I decided to take the day off because my legs feel a tad heavy from running 7.2 miles yesterday. My body continues to amaze me with what it’s capable of doing! But I want to make sure that I give it adequate rest so it can keep serving me well. :-)

Spent the morning reading about how to create effective teams in the workplace…exciting, I know. :roll: (I actually shouldn’t make jokes like that, because the truth is that I did find the reading pretty interesting!)

Between chapters I munched on a bowl of fruit.

Blackberries and grapes.

Lunch

I didn’t feel like putting a lot of effort into lunch today, so I kept it simple with some soup.

Not homemade, unfortunately. :-( This was Annie Chun’s Udon Soup Bowl.

It’s a pretty light meal on its own, so I added some tofu cubes and snap peas to bulk it up a bit. Do you ever add things to prepared soups? I often do!

Afternoon Snacks

I took my to-do list outdoors for the afternoon to soak up the beautiful rays of sunshine! 8-) While enjoying the warmth I did more reading: first my Bible, then for school, then for pleasure. And then I may or may not have nodded off for a short bit…’Twas glorious. :-)

Before the accidental cat nap I snacked on some apple slices and Trader Joe’s peanut butter pretzels…on a shamrock plate!

And later, a Banana Bread Larabar.

Dinner

Dinner was quick and easy. I love cooking, but for some reason I just didn’t feel like it today. :-| Fortunately I keep some deliciousness in my freezer for just such occasions.

A Sunshine Burger on a sandwich thin with all the fixin’s: lettuce, tomato, onion, and spicy brown mustard.


Sunshine burgers are the bomb. (Hello, 90s lingo!) They’re made from (surprise!) sunflower seeds!

Love that ingredient list!

Look at that BURGER!

On the side, some of the Sweet Cho-tato Salad I made yesterday.

And a green salad with spring mix, cherry tomatoes, shredded carrots, snap peas, and cucumber.


My dinner looks like it came straight from a summer cook-out! Just add some fresh lemonade and a few rounds of Bocce. (Anyone else play Bocce at family cook-outs???) 8-)

Evening Snack

I’m getting really into these “dessert yogurts.” Tonight I had Trader Joe’s European Style Chocolate yogurt, which was incredibly smooth and creamy. I didn’t really feel like I was eating yogurt at all!

Topped with fresh blueberries. And a baby peanut butter cup…just because. ;-) Enjoyed along with the latest issue of Real Simple!

Some St. Patrick’s Day Fun

And now, just to end the day on a silly note…

Who knew I had such sweet moves?!?! :lol:

How did you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day? Did you eat anything GREEN today?

p.s. Some amazing giveaways going on right now!

Have you entered my Chobani giveaway yet?

Want to try some of the Amazing Meal I used in my smoothie this morning? Lara’s giving some away!

Heather’s giving away some Wholesome Foods Bakery bars!

Baltimore-area readers: You can enter this awesome massage giveaway from Claire Taylor Massage!

Goodnight, all!

What I Ate – 2/8/2010

By Katie, 8:58 pm

Hello, everyone! I hope your work week got off to a good start! :-D

My day was pretty routine, but some yummy eats were definitely involved. Let’s have a look, shall we?

Breakfast

Breakfast had a lovely purple tint to it!

Cottage cheese mixed with blueberry preserves, enjoyed atop two slices of whole wheat toast. I know some people think of cottage cheese as a “diet food,” but I think of it more as an amazing food! It’s an awesome source of protein and calcium, and I think it tastes delicious on its own or with any number of fun mix-ins!

Along with some (too tart) blackberries. Can’t wait for fresh, local berries!

Mid-Morning Snack

After breakfast I hit up the Y for my run: 3.5 miles of speed intervals. Can’t wait to enjoy the gorgeous weather on my long run tomorrow! 8-) It’ll be my first time doing 6 miles! (Well, actually, I’ve probably run 6 miles before, but I didn’t know it because I was making an effort to go by minutes, not miles.) After my workout I came home and had a quick snack.

A small kiwi.

And a handful of roasted almonds.

Then I headed to the grocery store. Per my Food Budget Rules, my goal was not to deviate from my shopping list. While waiting in the checkout line I snapped a photo of my cart. (Yep, that got me some odd looks!  ;-) )

Verdict: Not perfect, but not bad! I only made one purchase that wasn’t on my list: medjool dates. I’ve seen them mentioned on several blogs lately, which made me realize I’ve only ever had the little chopped dates. I was intrigued by the medjools and just couldn’t pass them up!

Lunch

Lunch came in the form of side-by-side bowls.

The star of the show was the one on the right, which contained Sweet Potato-Black Bean Quesadilla wedges. I can’t get enough of the sweet potato-black bean combo!

Served on top of greens with a dollop of plain Greek yogurt.

Along with another bowl of greens, topped with cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and more black beans.

My intention was actually to eat all of this together, but I quickly found that my bowls were all too small. :-( Oh, well.

And of course, I had to try one of the medjool dates. I took one bite and literally said out loud (to myself, mind you), “This tastes like CANDY!” 8-O

You better believe I had a second one. ;-)

Afternoon Snacks

I had a rather snacky afternoon! Looking back, I don’t think my lunch had enough bulk to it…my body just kept telling me to eat more! So I obliged. :-)

First I took an idea from Meghann (also known as the Queen of Adding Almond Butter to Everything ;-) ): a fruit leather-almond butter sandwich.

I just separated the fruit leather and smothered some almond butter in between. It was tasty!

Next up, some peanut butter pretzels.

And finally, a Kashi bar. Whew! Like I said, a snacky afternoon. But I truly feel I ate it all out of genuine, physical hunger.

Dinner

Dave got home from work a little early, so I asked if he wanted to join me for a little strength training…and he said yes! :-D I love having a strength training buddy! We did an upper body circuit and then some core work.

Afterward I worked up what ended up being a spectacular dinner! I honestly didn’t think this was going to be anything special; I decided to make it just because it was quick and used up several ingredients I already had in the house. So I was pleasantly surprised when both of us “yummed” through the whole meal!

I basically adapted this Real Simple recipe for Shrimp with Roasted Red Peppers and Feta. First I combined the rest of our pre-cooked frozen shrimp (10 oz. maybe?) with roasted red pepper strips, 2 roughly chopped cloves of garlic, some chopped scallions, a touch of EVOO, sea salt, and pepper.

Then I divided the mixture into two individual baking dishes and topped them with some feta cheese.

Baked at 400* for 20 minutes. Yep, it was that easy!

I didn’t even fully thaw the shrimp, which I thought was going to mess everything up…until we got to the bottom of our dishes and found this wonderfully flavorful broth that we both proceeded to drink straight from the bowl! (Our children are going to have terrible table manners. ;-) )

An unexpected success! :-D

Evening Snack

I soothed my sweet tooth with one of the Oikos “dessert” Greek yogurt cups. I’ve seen other bloggers trying out the caramel flavor, but I’m not a huge caramel kind-of-gal. I opted to try the chocolate instead.

On top I had some of Trader Joe’s “Cat Cookies for People.” It just seemed right after seeing the Cheshire Cat in “Alice in Wonderland” last night. :-D

I really liked the yogurt! The chocolate had the same sort of taste as with Stonyfield’s Chocolate Underground flavor of regular yogurt, just with the thick creaminess of Greek-style!

The TRUTH Revealed!

I loved reading your guesses to my “Six Lies and a Truth” game! Here’s the real deal:

1. As a child I refused to let a vegetable pass my lips. LIE! I was almost freakishly good at eating my veggies as a kid.

2. The reason I obsess over my cats is because my mom hates animals; she never let us have any pets. LIE! My mom is the biggest animal-lover I know.

3. As a young child I was slightly pigeon-toed and needed to wear special corrective shoes. TRUTH! My mom called them my “special shoes” so I wouldn’t feel so embarrassed. Oh my goodness, I can’t believe I just told the whole world about my special shoes! :lol:

4. My brother used to sing in an Acappella group. LIE! That would never, ever happen. :roll: My high school boyfriend did, though, and they were actually pretty good!

5. My childhood nick-name was Sweet Pea. LIE! My childhood nick-name was Tater Tot!

6. I’m a total dare-devil; my dream is to one day go sky-diving! LIE! I appreciate how many of you guessed that I’m the adventurous type! But alas, I am not…at least not when it comes to jumping out of planes!

7. I played goalie for my high school field hockey team. LIE! I was a forward…left wing, to be exact. :-)

Your turn!

Are you a cottage cheese lover or a hater? If you’re a lover, what’s your favorite way to eat it? I’m probably going to try every way you suggest!

AND

Do you ever have “snack-y” days, where you just feel like you need to keep eating little bites here and there?

What I Ate – 3/1/2010

By Katie, 3:03 pm

It’s officially MARCH! I hope your first day of the month was spectacular!

I am very excited for March for several reasons: it should soon start getting warmer, Daylight Savings Time means more hours of light, and I’ll be attending two exciting weekend events – a Christian women’s conference and Fitbloggin’ 2010! (In my hometown, no less!) Can’t wait! :-D

Oh, and I really enjoyed reading your comments to my “Hungry Enough to Eat an Apple?” post. You all have some great ideas! :-)

Onto the food!

Breakfast

In honor of the month of St. Patrick’s Day , breakfast was GREEN!

I’m calling this my Tropical Green Monster. Again I ate it out of a bowl. When I have a green smoothie as a snack I drink it from a glass, but for some reason the idea of drinking a meal does not appeal to me.

Into the blender went:

  • 2 packed cups of spinach
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • big handful of frozen mango chunks
  • big handful of frozen pineapple chunks
  • topped with Cascadian Farms Oats & Honey granola

My Irish husband was proud. :mrgreen:  (Although he himself won’t touch Green Monsters! :-( )

Mid-Morning Snack

After breakfast I checked a few tasks off of my to-do list, then did my exercise for the day: a 3.5 mile run – complete with hill intervals – followed by some upper body weights and core work. Hills are the bane of my running existence, and yet I force myself to do hill workouts anyway. Conquering the incline makes me feel STRONG! :-)

After my workout I grabbed a quick snack before heading out on a bunch of errands. A piece of whole wheat toast slathered with almond butter and topped with pear slices. (I also ate the remainder of the pear.) Fresh pears + almond butter  = delicious!

Lunch

Lunch was, I must say, pretty darn fabulous – all thanks to the lovely Danica from Danica’s Daily. She gave me the idea for this lunch, and it was a total winner!

Awhile ago I made a big batch of Real Simple’s Turkey and Bean Chili and froze a serving or two to enjoy another day. That day was today!

This chili recipe is great – very thick and hearty, just like chili should be! I topped it with some reduced-fat Mexican cheese blend.

But this is what made my bowl extra special:

That would be a dollop of sweet potato puree! Thank you, Danica, for this wonderful idea! I’ve actually made chili using canned pumpkin before, so as soon as I saw her add sweet potato I knew I would love it. I had a little bit with each bite. YUM!

This was a pretty hearty lunch, and yet after I finished my bowl I didn’t feel quite satisfied. (I was probably about a #5 on my hunger scale, and felt like I wanted to be closer to a #6-7.) Hunger can be unpredictable like that! So I rounded out my meal with this little guy. Then I was perfectly satisfied! :-D

Afternoon Snack

There is just something special about fresh, locally-grown carrots. Especially ones that look like this.

We bought a couple of mammoth homegrown carrots at the market on Saturday. The woman tending the stand said, “they aren’t pretty but they sure do taste good!” She was right! :-)

Being goofy. :roll:

(Actually just wanted to show off the beautiful daffodils Dave brought me yesterday…aren’t they beautiful? They make me think of our wedding, which had a green and yellow color scheme. Love ya, hubby!)

I had the carrot with a glob of Trader Joe’s Three Layer Hummus.

And a bunch of grapes.

Dinner

Dinner took me a lot longer to put together than expected, but the finished product was good!

I made Apricot Pork Chops, and for some reason they took a lot longer to cook through than I thought they would. I followed this recipe from Branny Boils Over. (Everything I have made from her blog so far has been a success!) The only change I made was to double the amount of apricot preserves because I thought the soy sauce flavor was a bit overwhelming.

Dave and I both took one bite and went “YUM!”

On the side I had a double serving of veggies – asparagus and mushrooms roasted in EVOO, balsamic vinegar, sea salt, and pepper. The little bit of balsamic adds such a great flavor!

This dinner was actually really filling!

Evening Snack

Earlier in the day I decided I wanted a brownie for dessert tonight, but dinner kept me so full that when it came to my usual snack time a brownie just didn’t sound appealing. (Crazy, I know!) But I still wanted something…just something a bit lighter. I went with a yogurt bowl.

A small serving of vanilla Greek yogurt topped with grapes and a crumbled Kashi pumpkin spice flax granola bar.

Time to climb into bed with my book…my book club meets in two weeks and I just started the book last night! Better get reading! :-)


How do you consume your Green Monsters (or other smoothies)? From a glass or from a bowl?

Also, anyone else going to the Fitbloggin’ conference in a few weeks? I’d love to touch base with you!

What I Ate – 2/18/2010

By Katie, 9:07 am

Welcome to the weekend, folks! T-G-I-F, am I right??? :-)

Yesterday was a productive but uneventful day for me…fortunately it was also quite tasty!

Breakfast

Breakfast was another one of those wonderful meals that I never thought to eat before I started reading food blogs – OVERNIGHT OATS!

If you’re not familiar, overnight oats are just oats that are soaked in liquid overnight. You eat them cold, and you don’t cook them at all. And just like with hot oatmeal, the mix-in and topping possibilities are endless! Dave can’t get over the idea of eating cold oats, but I think they’re really delicious!!! Kath offers a full explanation of overnight oats, along with tons of great topping combinations, if you want to learn more.

For this bowl, I combined:

  • 1/3 cup dry oats
  • 1/3 cup nonfat milk
  • 1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 sliced banana
  • handful of frozen blueberries (added in the morning)

Mixed up into a delicious mess! :-D

Mid-Morning Snack

After breakfast I did some work, then headed to the Y for my workout. I ran for 40 minutes on the treadmill, and I have to say, it was mentally challenging. One of those workouts where you find yourself looking at the clock just a little too often. :-? Do you ever have workouts like that? I’m so ready to be able to run outside again!!! I originally planned on doing some strength training after my run, but decided to scrap it because I just wanted to be out of there. I’m hoping to squeeze some free weights into today’s workout to make up for it.

Came home and got in touch with my inner child with a Clif Z bar. ;-)

Lunch

Lunch was a lovely Panera-like combo: soup and salad!

A can of Amy’s Organic Split Pea Soup.

And a big salad.

In the bowl:

  • leaf lettuce
  • cherry tomatoes
  • carrots
  • 1 Quorn chik’n cutlet (which was really good, by the way!)
  • sliced almonds

For dressing, some spicy brown mustard thinned with a little bit of water.

Delicious!

Afternoon Snacks

One thing I’ve noticed about soup: I get extremely full when I eat it (probably because it’s liquid-y), but often feel hungry again shortly after. Good thing I love snacking!  :-) Not too long after lunch I found myself munching on a small apple with cinnamon.

And a bit later, a toasted Arnold’s sandwich thin smothered with peanut butter and jelly.

But not just any peanut butter, mind you. This was Cinnamon Raisin Peanut Butter from Peanut Butter & Co.

So good. For everyday peanut butter use I prefer my all-natural, nothing-added varieties, but for a little treat this stuff sure is tasty! (The ingredients are: peanuts, evaporated cane juice, raisins, cinnamon, organic palm oil, and salt. So at least no refined sugar or the dreaded high fructose corn syrup! :-D )

Dinner

Dave had a work function last night, so I was on my own for dinner. I knew I wanted to have a wrap of some sort because he doesn’t like them (crazy, I know!). I ended up going with an awesome combo I learned from Caitlin: sweet potato and black beans!!!

It made for a lovely, albeit slightly messy, dinner!

The orange and black gives it a bit of a Halloween feel, no?

On the side, some Brussels sprouts roasted in EVOO, balsamic vinegar, a touch of agave nectar, salt, and pepper.

And some extra sweet potatoes and beans that couldn’t fit in the wrap.

Very satisfying!

Evening Snack

Dessert was pretty darn glorious, thanks to my awesome momma! Look what she sent me for Valentine’s Day this year!

Chocolate-covered Oreos from Compartes Chocolatier! The snow backed up our mail system, so I just got them yesterday! What a scrumptious surprise! :-D

I ate the yellow one.

And then went back and ate the purple one too! That one went unphotographed.

What’s your favorite packaged cookie? Are you a big fan of Oreos? I generally only like them dipped in milk, or – as illustrated here – covered in chocolate!

Enjoy your weekend! :-D

What I Ate – 2/1/2010

By Katie, 4:36 pm

Happy Groundhog Day! This somewhat odd holiday holds a special place in my heart, as do all traditions rooted in central Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania Dutch. :-D

Unfortunately, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow this morning, meaning six more weeks of winter. :-x

Here are the highlights of my eating from yesterday!

Breakfast

Breakfast was quite simple.

Cottage cheese with peaches.

Overall I am not a huge fan of canned or jarred fruit. I’d much rather have it fresh. HOWEVER, for some reason I find the combination of cottage cheese and canned/jarred peaches to be irresistible! Perhaps because the juice from the fruit coats the cottage cheese, so you get peachy goodness in every bite. I usually look for canned/jarred peaches without any added sugars or heavy syrups; these peaches are actually jarred in white grape juice and they’re so good. How do you feel about canned or jarred fruits?

Plus a slice of whole wheat toast topped with reduced-sugar strawberry preserves.

Simple and satisfying. :-)

Mid-Morning Snack

Breakfast held me over pretty well – probably all that protein in the cottage cheese! I did a quick half-hour run with some speed intervals and then ran a bunch of errands, and didn’t feel hungry at all until I got home. I snacked on some raw almonds and a small bunch of grapes before finishing up some school work.

Lunch

Lunch was – food-wise – nothing short of divine. However, it was consumed under some less-than-ideal circumstances. The tenant who lives above us has been having some major heating issues (I pity her!!!), but the only way to access the furnace is through my basement. So over the past few days my landlord, a plumber, and some other men of unknown trades have been constantly in and out of my home. Yesterday they showed up around 11:30, and I decided to try to wait to eat lunch until they left…until the clock struck 1:30 and I couldn’t take it anymore! So I went ahead and ate this glorious plate of food.

Meatball sub with turkey meatballs and organic ketchup in a whole wheat hot dog bun.

For my sides, I grilled some sweet potato rounds and red pepper strips on the ol’ Georgie (love my George Foreman grill!)

This lunch was awesome! Although having just written a post about intuitive eating, I have to admit that I broke some of my own rules with this meal. By the time I was sitting down to eat it was almost 2:00; I was way too hungry, which led me to eat way too fast. Plus, it was a bit difficult to eat mindfully – truly savoring the food – due to the presence of strange men in my house. Like I said, I’m not the perfect intuitive eater, and I guess some circumstances just don’t lend themselves well to mindfulness. :-?

The one man walked into my dining room just as I started snapping some photos of my plate, and I definitely got one of these looks → I told him the photos were for my healthy living blog, but that didn’t seem to clear up the confusion. Ha! :lol:

Afternoon Snack

Dave came home from work a little earlier than normal so that we could go to the Y together. I had already completed my running workout for the day, so I just did a short warm-up on the treadmill and then lifted weights for my chest, back, hamstrings, and shoulders. (That might seem a bit random, but I try to strength train twice a week – the other day I focus on quads, glutes, biceps, and triceps.) Before heading off I snacked on a serving of dried apricots and a KIND bar.

KIND bars are the BEST! They taste amazing, and the company has an awesome philosophy. From the website: KIND is “a brand of healthy snacks that are KIND to your body, your taste buds, and the world. KIND snacks was founded on the principle of holistic KINDness: you need not sacrifice health for taste, or social mission for financial sustainability, nor your happiness for others.” Love it!

I definitely felt a little nicer after I ate this. ;-)

Dinner

Dinner was easy peasy. It featured this lovely product:

I used these lovely little dumplings to create a simple, delicious potsticker soup!

I basically just combined chicken broth, a little bit of rice vinegar and soy sauce, some minced garlic, shredded carrots, a package of stir-fry veggies, and the potstickers. (I can give you the exact amounts if you’re interested!) UPDATE: Check out the comments section for the exact amounts for this recipe!) Then I topped my bowl with some green onions and a tiny dash of garlic salt.

Mmmmmm mmmmmmm good! Served with a dinner roll topped with Earth Balance “butter.”

This roll came from the Atwater’s bakery stand at the farmers’ market. It’s called Struan, and it’s made with corn meal, oats, rice, buttermilk, honey, brown sugar, and sea salt. YUM!

A lovely meal! :-D

Evening Snack

For dessert Dave and I split this bad boy.

LOVE fresh mango! And you know I enjoyed my half with some dark chocolate. ;-) I am on a fruit-chocolate kick right now!

I hope you’re enjoying your Groundhog Day, despite the furry guy’s chilly prediction. I’m off to class tonight…hope it’s an interesting one! We’re discussing Emotional Intelligence (perhaps an upcoming post topic? ;-) We’ll see!).

What I Ate – 1/28/2010

By Katie, 1:33 pm

Did this week just fly by for anyone else? I can hardly believe it’s Friday already! Here’s a quick look back at my eats and treats for yesterday. :-)

Breakfast

Breakfast was a fun yogurt bowl!

  • plain Greek yogurt
  • Barbara’s Bakery Original Puffins
  • Apple (my last honeycrisp :cry: )
  • Plum jam

I’ve heard a lot of people say they can’t take the taste of plain Greek yogurt. I personally like the little bit of tang, but I also always sweeten it up with something – fresh fruit, jams and jellies, honey, or a little agave nectar. There are also lots of kinds that come with sweeteners (Chobani has some great fruit flavors).

This morning my star sweetener was this AWESOME jam from the farmers’ market.

Dave and I have developed quite a good rapport with the couple who runs this business. They make so many interesting, delicious jams, jellies, and butters. We try new kinds all the time!

All mixed up to create a “yog mess,” as Holly at The Healthy Everythingtarian would say! :-D

Mid-Morning Snack

Around 11:00 I snacked on an appropriately (albeit disgustingly) named blood orange.

That little guy was juicy! At one point I took a bite and somehow juice ended up all over the wall in front of me! :oops:

The wall was a good four feet away, so that juice got some distance! :lol:

Lunch

I have a tendency to open a can of beans early in the week, use just a few, and then have to try to think up interesting ways to use them up. Fortunately beans are extremely versatile and can be added to just about anything. Lunch was a taco salad of sorts.

In the mix:

  • lettuce
  • grape tomatoes
  • cucumber
  • black beans
  • red kidney beans
  • pineapple salsa

I just realized now, as I write this post, that I forgot to add cheese!!! Oh well, it was still quite good.

Plus some tortilla chips for CRUNCH!

I ended up deconstructing the salad and making little nacho bites, which was sort of fun! You’re never too old to play with your food a little bit, right?  8-)

Afternoon Snack

My afternoon snack was some carrot sticks with a Cinnamon Roll Lara Bar.

Have you tried Lara Bars? They’re FABULOUS! They are all natural and made from real, whole foods – no added sweeteners, fillers, or weird unidentifiable ingredients. In fact, each flavor contains no more than eight ingredients. That’s quite impressive, considering that most bars out there – even the healthy ones! – contain a disturbingly long list of ingredients.

Want to try Lara Bars? PreventionRD is currently hosting an awesome Lara Bar Giveaway! Three winners will get free samples of eight Larabar varieties! So go enter! What have you got to lose? :-D

This snack was perfect fuel for my workout. I waited to exercise until the early evening so that Dave and I could hit up the Y together. I was really excited to exercise because of this little contraption:

That would be an armband for my iPhone! I was really excited about it because I loved the idea of listening to Pandora while working out because then I could hear all kinds of music without having to buy it first. The truth is that it’s a little bulky; when I’m running on the treadmill I’ll probably just stick to my little Nano. But yesterday I used the elliptical and it totally did the job – I ended up going for five minutes longer than planned because Shakira came on Pandora and I just couldn’t stop bopping along! Yes, I am that person who dances a little bit while exercising…I can’t help it!

Dinner

On evenings we go to the Y together, our dinners are usually quick and easy because it’s getting a little late by the time we get home. But quick and easy can still be delicious! Last night was BLT sandwiches.

That would be lite mayo, lettuce, tomato, and turkey bacon on toasted whole wheat bread.

With a side of sweet potato oven fries, which were GREAT!

I followed this simple way of making them from Trading Up Downtown. I just sliced two small sweet potatoes (you can peel them if you prefer, but I like to leave the skin on because 1) it’s delicious, and 2) that’s where all the great fiber is!), put them in a Ziplock bag with some olive oil, cinnamon, and paprika, and did some major Shake ‘N’ Bake action. Then I baked them at 425* on a foil-lined baking sheet for about 30 minutes, turning them over occasionally. Perfection! I cut mine more like steak fries, but if you like crispier, more shoe-string-like fries, you can always just slice them thinner.

Dave and I were trying to figure out what would be a good dip for sweet potato fries. I know some people use ketchup, but I’m not sure if I’d like that. Dave thought Ranch dressing might be good, but I don’t really like Ranch all that much. Maybe plain yogurt/sour cream?

Evening Snack

My sweet tooth kicked in right as I was settling in to do something very productive watch Project Runway. I satisfied it with a dark chocolate Vita muffin top (pomegranate flavor), plus some strawberries that needed to be eaten immediately or tossed. A little bit of chocolate +  a little bit of fruit = the perfect indulgent yet still healthy snack! :-)

Some people might be surprised that I just confessed to eating a snack so late at night (it was probably around 10:00 pm) because there is so much hype out there about late-night eating and weight gain. But the reality is that weight gain/loss is all about calories in versus calories out, regardless of when you eat them. Correct me if I’m mistaken, but I think the real reason people do lose weight more easily when they nix night-time eating is that evening is when mindless snacking is most likely to occur.

I personally really enjoy a little evening snack, usually a sweet one. So instead of trying to deny myself – and then going overboard and feeling guilty about it – I simply plan for it and then enjoy it mindfully (meaning that even though I was watching television, I waited to eat this until a commercial came on, muted the television, and gave eating my full attention). No harm done! :-)

How do you feel about evening snacking?

What I Ate – 1/13/2010

By Katie, 8:17 pm

Welcome to the first installment of what I am titling What I Ate posts.

Today we hear a lot about striving for a balanced, varied diet. We hear phrases like portion control and everything in moderation, but what does that really mean? What does a balanced diet really look like?

Many popular food bloggers document every single thing they eat, every single day. While that is a little much for me, I’m planning on including What I Ate posts about three times a week. Why? Because I’ve personally reaped several benefits from seeing the food choices of other bloggers, including:

  1. Seeing just how much food you can eat, while still maintaining a healthy weight, when you make wholesome, nutritious choices (read: it’s a lot more than I initially thought!)
  2. Seeing how treats and splurges can be integrated into a healthy lifestyle
  3. Getting ideas about new, interesting foods to try

I’m hoping that by sharing some of my choices, you can reap these benefits too! 

I should make a few things clear before I go any further. I am NOT implying that my diet is perfect. I am NOT an expert on food or nutrition. I am NOT implying that everyone should eat like I do. We all have unique dietary needs and preferences, based on a wide range of factors (including but not limited to: age, gender, activity level, medical background, body composition…you get the idea). What I am documenting here is meant to provide one example, to show what eating a whole, healthy diet – with everything in moderation – means to me.

And now, onto the FOOD! :-D

Breakfast

This lovely bowl is a pretty standard breakfast for me.

In the mix:

  • old fashioned rolled oats (made with water)
  • pinch of salt
  • lots of cinnamon
  • banana slices
  • almond butter

Mid-Morning Snack

Breakfast gave me the perfect amount of fuel for my morning trip to the YMCA. I did 40 minutes on the elliptical machine, plus some ab exercises, push-ups, and LOTS of stretching. Upon returning home I felt like I needed to refuel and was totally craving CITRUS. So I grabbed this awesome piece of fruit. BEHOLD: THE COCKTAIL GRAPEFRUIT

In general I am not a huge fan of grapefruit, but I saw this sign at Trader Joe’s and knew I had to try one.

All sliced up

While this was definitely what I was craving, I thought it would be a good idea to add some protein as well, so I also had a small serving of cottage cheese with a dollop of fruit preserves on top.

The grapefruit was definitely sweet, with just a subtle “grapefruit-y” taste (there must be a more eloquent way to describe it!). It hit the spot. :-D

Lunch

When I finally got hungry again (much later than usual for some reason), I put together a satisfying lunch.

Including:

  • Whole wheat wrap
  • Applegate Farms Organic Herb Turkey Breast
  • Avocado
  • Romaine lettuce
  • Red bell pepper slices (for some CRUNCH!)
  • Dijon mustard

Plus some Honeycrisp apple slices on the side.

And a mini dessert from the stash Dave gave me for Christmas. ;-)

Afternoon Snack

I’m always sampling new, interesting bars, but yesterday I decided to stick to an old favorite:

I ♥ Luna bars. And I always love reading the inspirations and dedications on the back of the wrappers:

Dinner

I decided to try making a new recipe from the latest issue of Vegetarian Times – Sweet Potato “Shepherd’s Pie.”  It featured such wonderful ingredients as sweet potatoes (shocking!), onion, leeks, turnips, carrots, and cannellini beans (protein!). And I got to play with fresh herbs, which is always fun.

Prepping the veggies:

Adding the beans:

(Notice the much higher quality of these photos – taken with Dave’s amazing camera as opposed to with my cell phone!!!)

Dinner is served!

A heaping serving of sweet potato shepherd’s pie, plus a slice of whole wheat toast topped with Earth Balance “butter.”

It was good but not great. :-| Not enough sweet potatoes! Dave and I agreed that if I make it again, I should double the amount of sweet potatoes it calls for. But Dave took the leftovers for lunch today, so it couldn’t have been too bad. ;-)

(I wanted to link to the recipe, but I can’t find it on the Vegetarian Times website! :-x If you’re interested in making this, let me know and I’ll get you the info!)

Evening Snack

Dinner kept me pretty full, but I wanted a little treat.

Piping hot mug of tea and a slowly-savored oatmeal raisin cookie.

Wish it had been homemade, but alas, it was Kashi brand. Nice and soft, though!

So there you have it! An entire day’s worth of eats and treats!

I’d love to receive your feedback on these posts – do you like them? Do you hate them? Should I include them more often? Less often? Let me know!

And a question: Have you ever had a cocktail grapefruit? Do you enjoy trying new kinds of fresh fruits? In recent months I’ve tried persimmons, kumquats, and now a cocktail grapefruit! FUN!

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