Vegetarian


Tonight I really wanted something nourishing. I devoured an incredibly sugary cupcake from our hospital’s bake sale today and immediately felt the sugar high coupled with the almost immediate sugar low. This reminded me of why I try eat healthy. Not only because of the health benefits, but it just makes me feel good.

Not to say the cupcake didn’t satisfy me though. πŸ™‚

We recently got a deal with some english muffins; buy one get TWO free. Now we have more english muffins than we know what to do with!

I picked up some “Tex Mex” veggie burgers from Trader Joe’s today which were completely loaded with vegetables: broccoli, carrots, corn, peas, edamame, red peppers, etc.

What I am always hesitant of, though, is the sodium content of veggie burgers. They tend to be off the charts. These are 110 calories and have 230 mg sodium a pop. Not terrible.

Veggie burger +

equals:

It totally satisfied. If only more people would try using english muffins for buns!

I think I met me vegetable quota for the day with these brussels. Roasted at 400 degrees with olive oil, salt and pepper for 40 minutes. I “agitate” them once during cooking to make sure they brown evenly. No recipe needed.

I feel like I am fighting disease with every bite!

This was a very easy meal that didn’t involve slaving over any stove.

And I got to look at these while dining:

My husband knows how to cheer me up- fresh flowers!

Go out and roast brussel sprouts today! Seriously, go.

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I have had a craving for mexican food recently. Enchiladas really are in no way considered to be a “healthy” meal but I think that when made at home and with healthy additions, not only is it improved but it has at least half the calories of the kind you might get at a restaurant.

As usual, I was not prepared with a recipe. All I picked up at the store was small flour tortillas, an avocado, enchilada sauce and mexican blend cheese.

Yesterday I found myself brainstorming all day about what I should put into this dish. When I got home from work I found a container of mushrooms, frozen corn and an onion. This would make OK enchiladas but still missing something. That is when I found our Trader Joe’s quinoa. Viola! Our meal was made.

We put our quinoa into a rice cooker and treat it the same way as rice and it turns our perfectly everytime. While this was cooking I sauteed the mushrooms and onions in some butter (its the only thing I cook in butter) and threw in about 1/2 cup of corn straight from the freezer. I seasoned it with some cumin, red pepper, salt and black pepper. Once the quinoa was done I put that straight into the pan and took it off the heat.

Once the tortillas were filled and rolled up, I just covered them in enchilada sauce and cheese. I tried to be careful and not drench the tortillas in sauce, but it is hard to do because I know how delicious that sauce is.

It was baked in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes covered and 10 minutes uncovered.

They were amazing. And you can see from my picture that my serving was only about as big across as an avocado, which was only two of the small tortillas.

Plus it was made more healthy by skipping sour cream all together.

The insides made this dish!

Yum. It was great.

We are excited to have this for another night since it made another whole dish full that I just have to bake off tonight.

I was telling my husband that once we have kids I am gonna need to increase my production at meal times. Right now we tend to finish off entrees between the two of us in one or two nights. I will cross that bridge when we come to it. πŸ™‚

We have a bit of an addiction to homemade pizza. The key for us is the homemade crust. We start with this recipe:

We throw the ingredients into the breadmaker which will make the perfect dough in 90 minutes. We actually cut this dough in half once out of the bread machine so we are forced to eat pizza two nights in a row.

The other night I used 2.5 cups all purpose flour and 0.5 cups whole wheat flour.

We roll out of the dough, sprinkle it with corn meal and bake it in the oven for about 20 minutes or so before we put on our toppings.

We try to flip the crust once during the process. It becomes brown around the edges before we even put the toppings on. This particular crust was not our best specimen but still tasted good.

Toppings are endless but we like to use whatever we have in the house. Today that consisted of sun-dried tomatoes and herbs.

Plus cheese of course.

It then bakes for another 10 minutes or so, just until we think it is done!

I think it tastes so much healthier than take-out pizza places. Someday when we have a bigger oven I plan on getting a pizza stone so that we can further perfect our recipe. Yum!

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My awesome Aunt sent me this cute apron!

Isn’t it adorable?!

I can totally see myself as one of those women who wears an apron completely for the “look” of it. I think I was this woman in another life:

Source

I love her.

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I have another day off today. I am about to head to the gym for some body pump. I am officially addicted. I have always felt that I have strong legs but my upper body strength is definitely something to laugh at. I literally could not do a single push up for most of my life. Now I feel like I am finally starting to improve and I think it will help with all other areas of my fitness.

I should do a before and after picture of my “guns”. πŸ™‚

I have had this urge to perfect tofu for a while now because everytime I order it at a restaurant it is crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside.

So far when I have made it here we have tried roasting it and frying it. The results have not satisfied me.

Well yesterday was the day!

I always start with extra-firm tofu and like to press the excess water out of it for at least a half an hour.

Afterwards I briefly marinaded it in

  • 2 Tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp soy sauce

This seems like a weird combination but it actually worked very nicely.

I then grilled the tofu strips in our George Foreman grill for about three minutes each and they turned out perfectly crispy on the outside and chewy on the inside. I even dipped it in BBQ sauce after this picture was snapped which wasn’t needed but tasted awesome. All during dinner I was doing the classic “mmmmm”, “wow”, “geez this rocks!”.

The brussel sprouts were roasted in a 425 degree oven with some olive oil, salt and pepper for about 30-40 minutes.

I have wanted to make brussels again after dining here for my birthday and enjoying roasted brussel sprouts in duck fat, which was freakin’ amazing!

The whole meal was very simple yet incredibly satisfying. Tina influenced me into buying some arugula greens at Trader Joe’s and making a simple salad with feta and peanuts. It is definitely the prettiest green I have ever eaten. πŸ™‚

A lot of people are afraid of tofu but more people need to try it! It is high in protein, low in fat and an excellent source of calcium (who knew?).

I have the day off today for working the weekend and I think a stop at Crate and Barrel is in my future!

Well I attended my first spinning class at Healthworks and it was awesome!! I love everything about it. The loud, fast music, the large group and the workout. It really gets my heart rate up. I am actually feeling kind of motivated to make some kind of fitness goal, but I want it to be both realistic and challenging. I tend to think of something extreme and set my mind on it….for about a week. I am excited to try out more classes. It should be interesting to see how it works going after work since it is in a busy part of Boston, right on Comm Ave.

I have been wanting to make polenta lately and we finally picked some up at the store. I again tweaked a recipe and made it my own.

I started out my sautΓ©ing one package of baby bella mushrooms in about 1 Tbsp butter and 1 tsp oil. After it cooked for a good ten minutes I added about 1/2 cup of the red wine that we had lying around.

We enjoyed a glass as well. πŸ™‚

After adding the wine and letting it reduce for about ten minutes, I added about 1 tsp flour and another 1 Tbsp oil. It turned into this:

I love the purple color. The flavor was also awesome! Very light but full of flavor. I was telling my husband that it didn’t even need salt, it had tons of flavor without it. Would it be bad to tell my patients to cook with wine?

I added a handful of spinach after the roux was made. I thought it would add some nice color and nutrition. I like the idea of always having some fresh spinach on hand.

I baked slices of polenta in the oven at 400 degrees for a good 25 minutes. I just drizzled them in olive oil and added some salt and pepper. They didn’t brown! I had it in my head that they would brown nicely but it just cooked and sizzled. Oh well.

This was the finished product.

I layered four polenta slices on the plate and then added the mushroom sauce. It was a very light dinner. The bad thing is that now we have a few polenta slices left with no sauce. Tomorrow night will probably consist of throwing together some leftovers.