Prescribe Myself Some Rest

Hi friends! I had so much fun reliving my weekend at the Healthy Living Summit, but I am happy to now be back to normalcy again. In case you missed it, you can catch up on my most recent HLS Boston trip.

Destination Boston HLS12

Shake Out the Nerves: HLS Day 1

Cheers to New Friends: HLS Day 2

Decisions, Decisions: HLS Day 3

It’s time to get back into the groove. You remember how this works right? It’s time for a breakdown of my Wednesday. Here we go.

Breakfast

Overnight Chia Bowl made with:

  • Fage 0% fat Greek yogurt
  • Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • chia seeds
  • stevia
  • blueberries
  • strawberries

I let all of the ingredients except the strawberries mingle together over night, and topped the bowl with fresh strawberries in the morning.

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Lunch

Curry turkey salad over a bed of lettuce. I wrote down the recipe for this one but haven’t decided if I want to share or not because I wasn’t over the top thrilled by it. It was good though don’t get me wrong.

In the mix: celery, onions, turkey breast, grapes, Greek yogurt, and spices.

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Dinner

I stopped at mom and dad’s after work to hang out with them before heading over to meet with some girl friends for So You Think You Can Dance? I munched on some trail mix while relaxing, and then made my way to the table for dinner.

I had a very random, yet delicious dinner: spinach, green beans, and tomato…

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And a half of a banana with peanut butter for some protein which went unphotographed so I used an old photo instead. Perfect!

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The rest of the evening was spent with my girlfriends Amanda, Jules, and Sara. We girl-talked it up, watched SYTYCD, and ate M & M’s (BTW I have been over-doing it on the chocolate lately) while lounging on the couch. I had a great time with them, and always do. Kate, we missed you!

U.C. Update

I was going to end this post with a recipe, but decided to wait on that and give you an update on my Ulcerative Colitis instead. It has now been 3 months that I have been sick and unfortunately, I have to report that I’m still not feeling well. Certain symptoms have subsided such as bloating, which I can mostly attribute to removing gluten from my diet, but other symptoms (which I’ll spare you the details of) are still not under control.

I go through peaks and valleys where I am feeling fairly well for a few days, and then something happens whether it’s stress or a busy weekend, and I am thrown off again.

I am finding my energy level to be very low, so much as I am not working out nearly as much as I used to and it’s becoming less and less of a priority. Sleeping has become the priority, and I am truly trying to honor my body’s request for it.

I am seeing the doctor regularly, eating a very healthy diet, taking my medications as prescribed, sleeping, being active when I can, but the one thing I know need to work on is rest. With the summer being so busy, it is hard to rest. Maybe I should give myself a prescription to rest, then maybe I’ll do it? I’ll work on that. I think this is something that most of us could probably work on, am I right?

My mom reminds me that in the big picture of life, this time in my life is just a small little nick in the frame. With that being said, I must remind myself that not working out is not a big deal right now, and that rest is okay and saying no to invites is okay and that friends will understand. It’s hard to remember that when you are so used to the opposite.

I don’t mean to be a downer but I really wanted you all to get an update because it’s been a little while since I’ve given you one. I continue to try to stay positive, but this is really taking a toll on me. I won’t be sick forever, I can promise you that. I was just hoping to have fought this off already. I’m still me, just a more delicate me. I can’t wait for the day when I can tell you I am in remission and feeling fabulous. Let’s hope it’s soon.

Thank you all for letting me vent. I feel much better. I hope you all have a great Thursday and I look forward to catching up with you again soon!

Vegetarian Mexican Lasagna

Another awesome Saturday to go down in the books. It started off with a mango, banana, and almond milk smoothie.

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And a piece of almond bread slathered with PB2.

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Dana and I sipped our coffee on the deck while tossing the ball to Moose. It was a very relaxing morning.

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During the middle of the day we headed to celebrate our friend’s son, Leo’s 1 year birthday.

We mingled outside, hopped in the blow up hopper, watched as 5 kids opened up Leo’s gifts for him, and ate some awesome food. I didn’t snap a photo but I had a plate full of pulled turkey, Ramen salad, some sort of pesto pasta salad (maybe?), fruit, a peanut butter cup chocolate chip cookie and a piece of birthday cake. OMG everything was fabulous and so much fun. Leo is such a cutie and handled all of the extra attention so well.

After the party we stopped at Gertens Greenhouse and Garden Center to look for some plants for our front yard.

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We had a $50 gift card from our wedding and we did a great job of spending as close as we could to that amount. With a water thrown in our total came out to $49.66. Not bad, huh?

We bought three Barberry plants and one Sedum. I’m excited to see how they look in the front! Thanks Brian and Amanda!

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We stopped home to drop off the plants and pick up the pooch. We took off for a nearby little lake for a walk. Moose was not on his best behavior but it was still a nice walk. He wanted to get into everything and kept cutting us off and pulling more so than usual. He has his good days and bad days just like me.

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Dinner

For dinner I got creative with the zucchini once again, this time in the form of lasagna. The zucchini is popping up in our garden here and there and you better believe it’s going to get eaten. 

To start, I cut my zucchini into thin lasagna-like noodles. I sprinkled them with salt in a colander, and let them sit in the sink for 10-15 minutes. Then, I removed them from the sink and patted them dry with a paper towel.

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Next, I combined 1 cup of cooked black beans, 1/4 cup diced red onion, 3/4 cup corn, 1/4 cup diced tomatoes, 2 teaspoons of chili powder, and a dash of salt.

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Next I began the layering process starting with salsa on the bottom, then a sprinkle of bean mixture, zucchini, salsa, bean mixture, zucchini, salsa, bean mixture, and topped with cheddar cheese.

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Into the oven it went for 45 minutes at 400°. Then I flipped the oven to broil and broiled for 2 minutes to crisp the top.

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I let it sit a few minutes before slicing and plated it up.

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So pretty!

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Vegetarian Mexican Lasagna

Ingredients

  • 1 medium zucchini
  • 1 cup black beans, cooked
  • 3/4 cup corn
  • 1/4 red onion, diced
  • 1/4 cup tomatoes, diced
  • 2 tsp. chili powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400°. Lightly grease bread loaf pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Cut zucchini into lasagna-like strips. In a strainer in the sink, sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 10-15 minutes, then drain and pat dry with paper towel.
  3. In medium bowl combine beans, corn, onion, tomatoes, chili powder and salt.
  4. Begin layering: 1/3 cup salsa, 1/3 of bean mixture, zucchini, 1/3 cup salsa, 1/3 bean mixture, zucchini, last of the bean mixture, last of the salsa, finish with the cheese.
  5. Bake for 45 minutes then switch oven to broil. Broil for 2 minutes.
  6. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Cut carefully and serve. Finish with a few sprigs of cilantro.

Such a great spin on lasagna. I hope you’re not getting tired of all of the zucchini recipes! Pretty soon there will be a bunch of tomato recipes once they start turning red in the garden.

Have a wonderful Sunday!

Garlic Parmesan Zucchini Pasta

We are having the most incredibly beautiful weather here in Minnesota. The nights are falling to the mid 50’s and daytime in the mid 70’s.

This makes for perfect weather for a morning run. I hit the road for a 3.37 mile run (according to MapMyRun) and the temperature was 56°.

I jammed out to my Jack Johnson radio station on Pandora and ran at a leisurely pace. I find that my running pace often matches my music tempo. I was in the mood for a slower run, so I thought this music selection would be perfect and I was right, it was. My average pace was 9:37 minutes per mile. I think I’ve finally concluded that I’m not a fast runner, and I’m not sure if I ever will be a fast runner and I am okay with that.

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I am starting to enjoy running again and am very happy to be able to say that.

My day’s eats went undocumented except for dinner.

Dinner

Zucchini pasta.

 

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Garlic Parmesan Zucchini Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1 large zucchini, peeled
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1/4 cup onion, diced
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 cup green olives, diced
  • 6 grape tomatoes, quartered
  • parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. fresh basil, chopped

Directions

  1. Place zucchini pasta in strainer in sink, sprinkle with salt, and let sit for 10-15 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
  2. In a large pan, sauté mushrooms, onion, and garlic in olive oil for 4 minutes.
  3. Add zucchini, salt and pepper, green olives, and tomatoes until heated through.
  4. Plate up pasta and top with parmesan and basil. Enjoy!

This was such an easy, fresh, and inexpensive meal. Both Dana and I really liked it! 

Dessert

Strawberry banana soft serve!

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A friend of mine asked for the recipe for this dessert and although I don’t have any exact measurements, I will do my best to help you out!

Strawberry Banana Soft Serve

Ingredients

  • 2 frozen bananas
  • 1/2 cup frozen strawberries
  • a splash of almond milk (maybe 2 tablespoons)

Directions

  1. Place ingredients in blender and patiently blend until smooth. You will need to periodically stop the blender and push the frozen fruit around to get things moving. Once a soft serve consistency is reached, it’s ready to eat!

Happy Saturday to everyone. Catch up with ya’ll soon.

Garden Fresh Veggies

Hi there! I’m diving right in…

Lunch

I’m still not quite sure how I felt about yesterday’s lunch. The night before, I sautéed zucchini and mushrooms seasoned with cumin and salt and pepper. I then added cooked carrots and diced turkey. Once the veggies were cooled, I topped them with green olives, feta cheese, and balsamic basil dressing. I packaged the dish up and brought it with me to work.

I ended up eating the carrots solo, not in combination with any of the other items in this dish. They just didn’t belong, poor guys. Would I make this combo again? Probably not, but I didn’t HATE it, it just wasn’t as good as my other Greek-inspired dish from the other day. I prefer the fresh raw veggies versus the cooked any day.

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Either way I still enjoyed my lunch outside in the sun and then went for a quick 15 minute walk before heading back to work for the afternoon.

Gym

After work I made my way to the gym after sitting in traffic for what seemed like forever. I wasn’t feeling super energized so I grabbed my newest Rachael Ray magazine and rode the elliptical for 35 minutes. It was pretty darn hot in the gym yesterday and I ended up getting sweatier than I felt worthy of. I wasn’t hitting it too hard but the sweat made me feel like I was!

Dinner

For some strange reason, once normal dinner time rolled around, I was not hungry. I hadn’t eaten copious amounts of food throughout the day or anything, so this was weird for me. This doesn’t happen to me hardly ever.

I waited and waited for the hunger feelings to come around, and they were only starting to barely creep up when I decided I would just make myself a little somethin’-somethin’.

I made a salad with mixed greens, a half of a grilled pork tenderloin marinated in Lawry’s Hawaiian dressing, avocado, mango, and honey mustard dressing.

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About 45 minutes after I got done eating the salad, my appetite kicked in. I ate my second dinner which was a few small handfuls of trail mix…

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A bunch of these sweet red cherries…

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And a piece of almond bread. Dana said this was by far the best batch of almond bread I have made so far, and I would have to agree. I used Greek yogurt instead of homemade SCD yogurt, and cut the eggs down a little bit and incorporated some egg whites. It made for a more bread-like texture with less crumbling and more stability.

I should probably post this recipe soon, huh?

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As I was out checking out the garden last night, looking around for any fresh veggies to pick, I thought it would be fun to give you guys a glimpse of the jungle our garden has turned out to be.

I snapped this photo below back at the end of May when we planted zucchini, tomato, bell peppers, jalapeño, kale, green beans, and onions.

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Now check it out! Mind you there’s an abundance of weeds in there, but you see on the right side in the front? Those are all tomato plants and they are coming in full swing! They are mostly green still but there are LOTS of green ones. I can’t wait to be bombarded with tomatoes. Fresh salsa will be coming out my ears.

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The zucchini have had a rough summer. We have gotten a few so far, but not like last year. I think the weather has teased them a bit. I’m still hoping we get more.

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Here is our green beans and kale on the left.

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We didn’t get any peppers unfortunately which I am pretty bummed about. The onions are probably ready to be plucked from the ground, but I haven’t touched them yet.

I most definitely do not have a green thumb, but we are producing some veggies which makes me oh so happy.

I am off for the day, make it a happy one. Open-mouthed smile

A Joke for Monday

The weekend isn’t really over, is it? I feel like it never happened it flew by so fast. As always.

It was a wonderful weekend. I didn’t do much on the side of cooking and didn’t  develop any new exciting recipes over the weekend, but I surely enjoyed relaxing at home and with friends.

Saturday

Breakfast was a cup of coffee with stevia, and a piece of almond bread toast with PB2 and cinnamon.

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The fam bam and I headed out for a 3.35 mile run around the neighborhood. The weather was PERFECT. It is finally starting to cool down around here and the temperature was high 60’s with a light sprinkle which felt great.

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We switched up our grocery shopping day to Saturday instead of Sunday since we both had fun plans for Sunday and wouldn’t be able to go on our usual day.

When we were at Costco we stumbled upon a super large pet bed for Moose for only $20! Seriously you don’t find that price anywhere on pet beds. His other bed had seen better days and he was definitely ready for a new one; a big boy bed.

I think he likes it. Actually what’s funny is that we had to force him onto the bed for this photo. I think he likes it? Smile with tongue out

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Lunch was very random. I had grabbed a sample or two at Costco, and when I got home, I wasn’t sure what I was hungry for so I made it a small snack type of lunch.

I started with cooked carrots with cinnamon.

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Then oven roasted turkey breast with cheese.

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And then I think I moved on to a couple of bites of peanut butter and then called it a day, but I’m not for sure.

In the afternoon, I relaxed and laid out on the deck. It was wonderful and much needed. I have been exhausted.

Dinner was Roasted Butternut Squash Soup that I made a while ago and stored in the freezer. I love having homemade soups in the freezer for days like Saturday night, where I had no inclination to cook or make anything. All we had to do was grab a couple of bags of soup from the freezer, pop them in a bowl in the microwave, and top them with some chives.

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Easy and very tasty once again.

Sunday

On Sunday I headed to Mankato to meet up with a couple of my girlfriends from college. Being that we were all dietetics majors, there is always food involved at our get-togethers.

I brought apples, mango, cherries and yogurt dip, Terra sweets and carrots chips (which are amazing btw), and to the left unpictured is a giant bag of trail mix which I dominated.

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We also had pretzel chips and hummus, carrots, and lettuce wraps. Pretty healthy, right?!

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I loved loved catching up with the girls. They both have beautiful little baby girls so I got lots of quality baby time. I love baby time, and girl time, so it was a great Sunday.

When I got home, Dana, Moose, and I went for a leisurely walk around the neighborhood, then I got ready for the week ahead.

Monday Joke

So, I was thinking…since I tend to have a hard time dealing with Mondays, with going back into work week and all, how about I try to throw you all a joke on Mondays when I remember? I know I am not the only one out there who struggles with this day, so we can all benefit from it. I’m not guaranteeing any quality jokes, but if they can at least make you smile, or give you the slightest chuckle, I will feel like I’ve done my job.

Q: How do you turn a soup into gold?

A: Add twenty four carrots!

Ba-da-boom-ching. Happy Monday friends.

Got any good ones? Please share and make us all smile.

Chocolate Chip Cookies Paleo Style

Good day to you all! I hope everyone’s weekend is off to a great start. I’m pretty sure I have deemed Friday as my favorite day of the week. At the end of the work day it’s so nice knowing that I have the whole weekend ahead of me to do as I please.

My Friday

I started my day with a banana pancake topped with honey and PB2. I made it the night before so that all I had to do in the morning was pop it in the microwave and add some toppings. I’m all about anything that make early mornings easier for me.

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I am attempting to wean back on the nut butter a bit because I was seriously getting out of hand and eating it by the spoonfuls. I think it was a combination of factors: I may have felt slightly deprived from the diet, I don’t love meat, and I felt like it was something that actually satisfied my belly. Now that I am starting to incorporate more of my favorite proteins again, quinoa, beans, and eggs, I am able to cut back on the nut butter. I will not be cutting it out however!

For lunch I ate the same awesome Greek-inspired salad as yesterday.

After work, I headed straight to the gym yet again. I hit the elliptical for 20 minutes, then moved to the treadmill for a mile run all while watching the Olympic women’s 10,000 meter race. Holy cow those ladies are speedy! It was great motivation to keep me moving. After cardio, I moved to the free weights to pound out a chest and tricep workout. I finished with some core work. Strength training two days in a row! It has been a while since that has happened.

For dinner I made a taco salad.

In the mix:

  • mixed greens
  • cilantro
  • black beans
  • cheddar cheese
  • tomatoes
  • onions
  • and ranch dressing

I debated whether or not to top the salad with salsa, but have found in the past that I am usually disappointed if I use salsa as my dressing, so I opted for one I knew I would like.

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After dinner I wanted dessert. I found a Paleo chocolate chip cookie recipe from Delighted Momma and decided to give it a whirl.

I made a few changes though of course as I always do. Instead of the coconut oil, I used organic applesauce and instead of using 4 whole eggs, I used 3 eggs plus 1 egg white. For the chocolate chip part, I bought carob chips from the natural food store in town. I have never used them before but know they can be substituted for chocolate chips and are a healthier option. The ones I bought were dairy free. 

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Chocolate Chip Cookies Paleo Style

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup organic applesauce
  • 3 Tbsp. honey
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/8 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 3/4 cup carob chips

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375°.
  2. In mixing bowl beat together applesauce, honey, eggs, egg white, vanilla, and salt until well combined.
  3. Next, stir in coconut flour, coconut, and carob chips.
  4. Roll into balls and flatten slightly*; place on parchment paper or non-stick baking mat.
  5. Bake for 15 minutes.

*The cookies do not change their shape from pre-cooked to post-cooking so flattening them makes them more cookie like.

Thank you Delighted Mama for the inspiration! I loved these cookies. They have a coconutty chocolatey flavor, a soft texture, and are slightly addicting.

I hope you all enjoy! I am off to soak up the weekend. Hope you are too.

“Fauxtmeal” Raisin Cookie Bites

August 1st? Really?! Holy cow time is flying by so fast I can hardly keep up.

Dehydrated Fruit and Veggies

So, remember how I told you I bought a food dehydrator? Well, it has been taken out of it’s box and gotten some action. My first attempt with the machine involved carrots and bananas.

For the bananas, I sliced them thinly, gave them a squirt of lemon juice to slow down the browning, and placed them on the tray.

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As for the carrots, I used the wonderfully fresh carrots from the farmer’s market and sliced them into thin coins as well. I was hoping that the purple carrots would be purple all the way through, but no such luck. Once I peeled them they were orange on the inside. Still beautiful though.

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I placed all of the coins onto the dehydrator, set the cover on it, and turned it on. This particular one doesn’t have a temperature setting, so you just have to monitor your food while it’s going to check for doneness.

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Considering carrots are made up of so much water, I expected them to shrink down quite a bit, and they did. They’re cute little bites. Next time, I will be using a different technique to cut them so that they are a little bit bigger. The texture of the carrots turned our crunchy, which is how I wanted them.

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There are two textures that can come of the banana chips, and probably any fruit or veggie that gets dehydrated: crisp or chewy. The outcome depends on how thick or thin the fruit is cut, and how long you let them dehydrate. I like my banana chips crunchy, and Dana likes his chewy, so I made sure to vary the size of slices so we could both be accommodated. Just kidding

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I don’t know for sure how long the carrots and bananas were in the dehydrator. Next time I make a batch, I’ll pay better attention so I can let you know.

Keep in mind that with any dried fruit, you want to watch your serving sizes. Dried fruit has a lot concentrated sugar, so you want to keep it to a minimum. I particularly wanted the dehydrator so that I could make snacks for us when we needed to be away from home because these hold up very well with traveling. Also, I absolutely love dried fruit, and although I try not to go too nuts on it because of the high sugar content, when I do eat it, I would much rather make my own and know what exactly is going into it; no preservatives, no added sugars or fats.

The banana chips at the store are often loaded with saturated fat because they add oil to the drying process (which is why the ones in the store are so crunchy like a chip). Be careful!

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Tuesday Evening

After work last night I headed to the gym and pounded out 35 minutes on the elliptical while reading the latest addition of Runner’s World magazine.  I contemplated hitting the weights afterwards but then shied away for some reason. Darnit! I need to get back on those weights.

Dinner last night was nearly identical to my lunch the day before, except for instead of chicken, I topped the salad with almonds. I swear it was even better this time around, if that’s possible.

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Now, onto yet another recipe. I have had a lot of recipes lately and I love it! These are no bake energy bites that I make in the food processor. I shared another recipe with you a while back for another version of these treats called Cocoa Craisy Energy Bites.

Here is my newest creation.

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“Fauxtmeal” Raisin Cookie Bites

Ingredients

  • 1 cup raw almonds
  • 13 dates (about 3/4 cup)
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp. vanilla

Directions

  1. In food processor, process almonds until they reach a coarse sand texture. Transfer to a small bowl.
  2. In food processor, process remaining ingredients until finely ground and well combined.
  3. Add almonds in with date mixture; process until combined. Use hands to shape mixture into 1 inch balls. Store in air-tight container.

They taste like oatmeal raisin cookies hence the name. You could also roll them in coconut for an added thrill. 😉 These are perfect pick-me-up snacks. They are great if you are needing a small boost of energy and heck, they are great for a healthy dessert too!

I am signing off for the day. Enjoy your hump day and I’ll be catching up with you soon!

Random Question of the Day: What food is your biggest vice lately?

Lately, mine has been nut butter. I can’t seem to keep my hands off of it. It is getting to the point where I am putting myself on a “cool-it” time out with it. Obviously nut butter is packed full of fat and calories, so it’s important to monitor the intake. But, it also has good things too like protein, so don’t get me wrong; I am a huge promotor. Just keep your portions to 2 tablespoons or less per day.

Stuffed Poblano Pepppers

Hello there! Everyone having a great weekend? Mine has been wonderful. I have quite the Saturday recap for you, hope you’re ready.

Breakfast

I blended up a fruity smoothie packed with strawberries, banana, cherries, spinach, yogurt, and sweetener. I also ate a spoonful of almond butter to pack in extra protein.

Farmer’s Market

After breakfast we cruised on over to the big Minneapolis Farmer’s Market. Holy cow I was in fresh vegetable heaven.

It was so crazy busy but it always is. It’s always encouraging as a dietitian seeing SO many people at the Farmer’s Market getting excited about fresh produce. Let’s just hope they don’t go home and make them into fried green beans and buttered bacon mushrooms. 🙂 My brother Scott would say what’s wrong with that?!

We ended up buying: onions, cilantro, carrots, Poblano peppers, grass-fed ground beef and bison.

Whole Foods

We were getting pretty hungry after all of that commotion, so on our way home we stopped at Whole Foods for their outstanding salad bar.

We enjoyed our salads at the beautiful Centennial Lakes.

On our way home from lunch we drove by a few garage sales. We are thinking about buying a book shelf for our office and ideally would like to find a cheap one from a garage sale or Craig’s List, and fix it up if need be. No such luck at the sales yesterday, but we are keeping our eyes out.

Dinner

Back at home, I prepped for dinner. It was only about 2:30 in the afternoon at this point, but Dana and I were going to church at 5:00, so I figured I would get everything prepared beforehand, so that after church, we could just finish up the cooking process and have ourselves a delicious meal in no time.

Dinner involved the fresh farmer’s market Poblano peppers. I began by cutting off the tops, deseeding the peppers, and baking them in a 400° oven for 15 minutes.

***MAJOR TIP! Wear gloves or use a spoon to scoop out the seeds if you handle these bad boys. I learned the hard way; wasn’t even thinking about the fact that these were spicy peppers, and ended up with a right hand that burned for a good hour. You’ve been fore-warned.

Next, I sautéed 2 diced small onions with 3 minced garlic cloves. After about 4 minutes, I removed them, and added 1/2 of a pound of ground beef to the same pan (the less dishes the better!). I browned up the meat, then brought it to the sink so I could rinse and drain some of the fat off. I returned the meat and the onions to the pan, no longer on any heat.

I then added 1 fresh tomato—-from our garden. Our first normal tomato of the summer!

And 1 tablespoon chopped fresh farmer’s market cilantro, 1 tablespoon salsa, 1/2 teaspoon cilantro, 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese, salt, pepper, and if I would have remembered I would have put a dash of chili powder in there, but I forgot. I mixed everything together to make the “stuffing” for the peppers.

I stuffed all of the peppers using a spoon, wrapped them individually in tin foil, and placed them in the fridge for later. 

Next, I made a small batch of guacamole using 1 ripe avocado, 1 teaspoon fresh cilantro, lemon juice because I didn’t have lime, a dash of garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, salt, and pepper. I gave this all a mix, covered it and put it in the fridge.

When we got home from church, and after running a couple of errands, we got the grill fired up. The peppers did their thing on the grill  for about 20 minutes over medium-high heat.

Transfer to your plate, remove the foil, top with guacamole and some salsa if you like, and there you have it. Deliciously healthy stuffed Poblano peppers.

Stuffed Poblano Peppers

Ingredients

  • 5 Poblano peppers, top cut off, deseeded
  • 2 small onions, diced
  • 3 small garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 lb ground beef
  • 1 small tomato, diced
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp cilantro, chopped
  • 1 Tbsp salsa
  • 1/4 cup cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400° F.
  2. Place prepared peppers onto baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
  3. In medium pan, saute onions and garlic for 4-5 minutes; remove from pan, return pan to heat.
  4. In same pan, brown the ground beef; rinse and drain in sink, return to pan and take off heat.
  5. Add remaining ingredients including the onion and garlic, to the pan to make the stuffing.
  6. Once peppers are done, use spoon to fill peppers with stuffing.
  7. Wrap peppers individually in aluminum foil.
  8. Place on heated grill and grill for 20 minutes.**
  9. Top with guacamole, salsa, or enjoy as they are!

**These would also work in the oven, although I am unsure of the temperature and cooking time so you may have to experiment!

Cute Little Turkey Meatloaves

Oh, happy day, oh happy day! Let’s give a woot woot for Friday! I have a ferocious appetite this Friday morning–I don’t know what’s up with that, but I’m feedin’ it. I have a great recipe to share with you all from last night, but first I want to share a few bits and pieces from Thursday.

The past couple of days I was at a conference for work. The conference was held on the U of Minnesota campus and believe it or not, I had never really been on campus. I’ve been to the U of M but never actually walked around the campus. It is beautiful and BIG!

On the first day, I slightly underestimated the amount of traffic there would be, and was running a twinge late. Then, when I made it to my destination, I had the challenge of finding the parking ramp. I finally found the parking ramp after making a couple of rounds around the area. Once I parked, I made sure to record where I had parked by snapping a photo.

Does anyone else do this? It’s especially essential for me to either take a photo or write down where I parked when I’m in a bit of a frenzy as I was that day, otherwise I will never remember where I parked, and ramps are incredibly confusing to me. I actually wasn’t planning to post that photo but it turned out to be kind of neat. The photo was from day 1, and on day 2, I made sure to park in the exact same spot.

On Day 2 (yesterday), I was in a much calmer mood walking onto campus since I was now familiar with where to park, which building to go to, and which room the conference was in. I even packed a backpack to carry all of my stuff so that I didn’t have to look like the crazy person about to drop a purse, a lunch bag, a binder, and a sweater as she sweats her way to the parking ramp at the end of the day, which was me the day before.

I definitely looked like a student, and felt like a student again, walking on to campus with my backpack, and confidently knowing right where I was supposed to go. It felt great.

In that ol’ backpack of mine (Dana’s actually), I packed all of my running gear and my lunch. Once we got let out for our hour-long lunch break, I quickly changed into my running gear and hit the road. There was a sidewalk right along the river that I ran right along, and the views were gorgeous. I got a couple of stanky wiffs of dead fish, but even with that, it was beautiful.

I’m not used to running mid-day or afternoon for that matter, so it felt very hot to me, but there was a nice breeze that helped to keep me cooler. It couldn’t have been a more perfect afternoon.

I have noticed that I am not in the best running shape anymore. I haven’t been running as much lately due to minimal energy and discomforts from the U.C., but small runs here and there have been feeling okay. I will get my running juice back, I just need to work up to it again.

Yesterday on my lunch run, I covered just under 3 miles. Then, I headed to my car to blast the AC, cool down, and eat my lunch, before heading back to the conference. I was so proud of myself for going for a run during break. It helped to keep me feeling warm(er) during the afternoon in the freezing cold auditorium, and also helped keep me awake. Another plus is that I didn’t have to go to the gym afterwards which is really great because I didn’t get home until nearly 6:00, and I was HUNGRY.

Dinner

My foodie brain had wandered during the morning portion of the conference, and I had created our dinner meal in my head. I texted Dana, “Mini turkey meatloaf and grilled zucchini and artichokes?” His reply, “num.” When I got home Dana had done a lot of the prep work for me already: chopped the carrots, onion, green olives, zucchini sticks, mushrooms (I added this idea later after that first text), and lastly artichoke hearts. I got to work on the rest of the prep and came up with a seriously tasty recipe for you all. No need to dilly dally, here it is!

Cute Little Turkey Meatloaves (makes 7 muffin sized loaves)

Ingredients 

  • 1/2 lb lean ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup carrots, diced finely
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced finely
  • 1/4 cup olives, roughly chopped
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 tsp celery seed
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • a dash of cumin
  • salt and pepper
  • ketchup or BBQ sauce (I used homemade SCD BBQ sauce)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°**. Prepare 7 muffin tins by spraying with non-stick cooking spray; set aside.
  2. In medium bowl, use hands to combine all ingredients except ketchup/BBQ sauce. Do not overmix.
  3. Press mixture into prepared muffin cups, leaving 1/4-1/2 inch on the top.
  4. Spread 1-2 heaping tablespoons of sauce over each loaf.
  5. Bake for 35-45 minutes**.
  6. Broil on high for 3 minutes. Remove from oven and enjoy these cute little loaves.

**I used the convection bake setting on my oven and baked the loaves for 35 minutes. Since convection can contribute to shorter cooking times, I extended the range of cooking time from 35-45 minutes because I realize not everyone has the convection option. Keep an eye on your loaves. Since they are in miniature sized versions, they don’t take too long to bake.

 

Of course I smothered my turkey loaf with even more sauce, but they don’t necessarily need more! Alongside the turkey we served grilled zucchini, mushrooms, and artichokes sprinkled with a touch of salt.

 

I went back for another loaf. This dinner was the bomb, like tick tick. LOVED IT. Please make these. They are perfect for kids too!

For dessert, this happened…

Dana made us up a batch of strawberry banana soft serve and it was just what I needed to end my night.

I am off to get a workout in as well as a couple of errands. Tonight I have plans with my girlies and I am pretty pumped about it! Catch you later gators. 😉

 

Turning Into a Carrot

Happy Thursday!

So, this post is ALL over the board. I missed a day of blogging so I’m going to try to catch you up on anything I feel is important enough to share.

First of all, this arrived on our doorstep yesterday. My very own food dehydrator. No more spending mega dollars on dried fruit and veggie chips at the store, I’m making my own. You better believe there won’t be any preservatives or added sugars in my dried goods. I can’t wait to get this up and running. I am particularly excited to try to make veggie chips. They will be a great crispy snack, or at least I am hoping they will be.

For dinner Tuesday night I made myself an egg scramble with 1 egg, 1 (or 2?) egg whites, cheddar cheese, and diced avocado. I topped it with Wild Harvest’s Mango Salsa and had a tasty meal in no time. I also ate cooked carrots–I think I am officially turning into a carrot the way I have been eating those bad boys lately.

Wednesday Breakfast

I started my day off yesterday with a cup of coffee and a bowl of cinnamon and honey yogurt.

I was at a conference for work all day and since lunch wasn’t provided, I brought my own of course. I packed cooked carrots, and a banana pancake with almond butter. I also brought an extra banana in case I needed something else, but it turned out that I didn’t eat the banana but should have eaten it, because by 5:00 I was not feeling so hot. I know that if I go too long without eating I tend to bloat, but the conference setting we are in doesn’t make snacking very easy. First of all food and drink are technically “not allowed” in the auditorium we are in, so if I did want a snack I would have to have one outside of the auditorium, and second, it’s so cramped in the stadium seats, that reaching into your bag to dig out a snack makes for quite the tricky task.

 

I don’t want to deal with the bloating again today though, and since I am at the conference again, I’m going to do my best to have snacks in between meals to help tame my gut.

During lunch break, my co-workers and I set out for a walk. It was incredibly humid and hot here yesterday, so we walked at more of a leisurely pace than we normally would. It felt great to stretch the legs for a while after being cramped so long.

After the conference, I had plans to meet up with my girlfriends, so I packed myself a little snacky dinner: cheddar cheese, a hard-boiled egg, more carrots, and honeydew melon.

I headed over to my friend Julie’s house along with my friends Kate and Amanda. We caught up, laughed a lot, watched SYTYCD and completely enjoyed eachother’s company. I love all of those girls so much. Girlfriends are so amazing. Oh, and I cannot forget to mention we also hung out with her two adorable Maltese pups, Ava and Bella. Seriously the cutest little furballs.
This old lady (moi) had to leave the party at 8:30 to get home and pack her lunch for today so she could make sure to hit the hay by 10:00 pm. I need a lot of sleep these days.

I am out of here for the day, unless Moose decides to jump on my computer and write a guest post. 🙂 Have a great day every one! It’s looking like a beautiful one around here.