Plethora of Pictures: Plates Edition Part 2

Random food pictures part 1?

Here’s some more. No sentiments, just pics.

Breakfast Time

Fibre One cereal with frozen banana, cocoa powder and almond milk

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Strawberry smoothie

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Strawberry cocoa smoothie with Chocolate Cheerios and red toes

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Strawberry spinach smoothie

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Coffee cocoa spinach strawberry smoothie in a peanut butter jar

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And since this peanut butter jar is clearly now empty, I am out of peanut butter. How to solve such a dilemma? Take the easy route and buy another jar? Or…

Make a fresh batch of almond butter –>Better plan.

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This smoothie got coned. And then the cone got…smoothied? Smoothies are about 1.3x more fun when eaten out of a cone.

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Greens and Misc Garb

Raw veg and cold potato morning snack with salsa ranch dressing and the end of Eat, Pray, Love

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Greens salad topped with potoato bites, salsa, crumbled turkey burger and hummus

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Spinach and slaw salad topped with sundried tomato tuna

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Another random pile of vegetable junk.

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Kale Salad Oh She Glows style

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Turkcauli burgers with mustard, baked potatoes, greek salad

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Baked potato stuffed with hummus, spinach, melty cheddar, and topped with sour cream

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Sweet and white potatoes and broccoli roasted in sundried tomato vinaigrette

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Couscous and mixed bean salad with red onion, red pepper, cucumber and the same sundried tomato vinaigrette as I roasted the above potatoes in. (I was using up the bottle since it was a little gag-worthy on top of salads but worked significantly better when tossed among other more substantial foods.)

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Some of those earlier roasted potatoes on top of some kale dressed in balsamic vinegar.

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Grilled chicken Petita from Pita Pit stuffed with a garden of veggies and honey mustard (I usually get baba ghanoush but I find it doesn’t hold me over very long so I thought chicken might do a better job. It didn’t really, and I missed my baba.)

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Veggie burger salad: cabbage slaw, tomatoes and pickles topped with a grilled veggie burger and grilled potatoes, all of which were topped with ketchup and mustard latticework.

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Raspberry almond butter cookies based off of Lauren’s cashew blueberry recipe. (like my appealing bitten and battered display?)

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Aforementioned cookies with apple slices and black coffee

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And to end it all on a simple summer note: a popsicle

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Good times.

 

Back to slightly more regular/less giant food recap style posting…soon? As long as this food relationship of mine starts becoming a little less abusive. Food and I are really going through a rough patch right now. I’m very resentful of him and his taunting ways. Time to start laying down the law!

Or…something. I think a baking hiatus is in order. All of my half assed, half delicious attempts that no one else cares to touch are doing nothing more than finding their way into the garbage disposal that is my stomach, their then crushed and condensed remains housing themselves snuggly onto my thighs. And along a similar note, a sugar hiatus would also be very helpful, though likely less plausible. A sugar decrease, however, is not an entirely crazy idea.

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**Recommendations for a desperate food addict needing to tone the insatiable sugar cravings down? Aside from a kick in the bum and a hefty dose of willpower, those are (sad) works in progress.

 

I can’t stop complaining about this relationship until Food and I are finally on the same page again, what can I say. It’s an arranged marriage with divorce as a non-option so somehow we’re gonna have to make it work.

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A Day in the Kitchen of a Grazer

Word on the street says that there are a lot of grazers out there.

I am a grazer. Through and through.

I knew today was going to be quiet and uneventful – The perfect recipe for a grazing day. So I decided to give myself a challenge: Try to photograph everything I ate for the day.

I wasn’t aiming to capture perfect portions or every bite since I grab chunks, spoonfuls and nibbles rather than measuring or plating out 3/4 of what I eat. I just wanted to see if I could capture a glimpse of each food thing that entered my mouth today.

Verdict: Almost successful.

This was tough! I’m impressed with people who can actually capture every.single.thing they eat (even more impressed with those that can actually plate their snacks and bites before eating them. I do not have enough patience for that). I definitely forgot a few things along the way but I think I got the majority.

 

SO here’s a sample of A Day in the Kitchen of a Grazer (This is a sample of my habits, not necessarily of my regular daily food choices. Though most days are similar enough, my food choices do have quite the day-to-day variability)

Warning: the quality and appeal of today’s food is rough. Avert your eyes or scroll past quickly as needed.

Breakfast

As I’ve been mentioning lately, smoothies are the name of the game in the mornings. This morning was no different on that front. Before said smoothie is made, a pre-smoothie snack always seems to happen. Don’t ask me why, weird habit.

Today’s contenders: leftover grocery store sushi

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…and a chunk ripped off a slice of bread.

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Which was then dipped in roasted red pepper hummus.

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Then finally the smoothie got made. A coffee cocoa spinach strawberry smoothie to be exact.

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Vanilla soy protein powder + chilled coffee + almond milk + cocoa powder + spinach + a handful of large frozen strawberries + ice + stevia + the gums

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This one actually turned out perfectly. Best smoothie I’ve had in a long time. No idea what I did differently but I’ll likely be making this exact combo again tomorrow with crossed fingers.

Perfection smoothie was paired with hot green tea.

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Followed by a splash of coffee with vanilla creamer.

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Enjoy my ten course breakfast?

 

Mid-Morning

After a little digestion time I was in the mood for baking. I’ve been meaning to make cornbread for a while now and it was finally time.

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Except…this cornbread was awful. AWFUL. I was half following a couple recipes, half winging it, full out failing miserably.

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I tried sampling some with butter and jam but it was still pretty inedible. I wrapped the rest up and threw it in the freezer since I prefer to Waste Not…but I’m really not sure how I’m going to be able to revive that mess.

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For sweet redemption (since my first baking attempt definitely didn’t satisfy any baking urgers), I decided to use up the last of my peanut flour in the best way possible since I can’t buy it around here and it will be a while until I see some in my pantry again.

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In an Inside Out Peanut Butter Cup Cake! I’ve made it before with amazing results and today was no different. I saved this baby for later though.

First it was time for …

Lunch

Since the oven was already hot and ready from my baking attempts, I decided to throw in an acorn squash for lunch. I ate some of this mashed beauty with a pat of light margarine alongside a kale salad, a hard boiled egg and another chunk of this morning’s bread slice with plain hummus.

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Then it was time for…

Workout

I did a duo sesh – long treadmill session followed by Jillian Michaels Shred. The in-between required a breather… and a grazing session.

The rest of this morning’s bread slice was dipped straight into this jar of salsa. And here’s where a picture fail happens – I missed getting a shot of the rice crackers and triscuits that also got drowned in the salsa.

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I didn’t forget to grab a shot of the acorn squash I ate with a spoonful of peanut butter though. Well… I almost did.

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There were a few spoonfuls into here today… and into my other natural (aka not-so-fake) peanut butter jar. And I was going to take a break from peanut butter this week… maybe tomorrow. Or never. Whatever.

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Dinner

When dinner finally rolled in I was in the mood to mess around with my panini press. Pizza quesadillas were born – aka jarred pasta sauce and cheddar squished into a wrap. Culinary expertise right here.

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I didn’t actually eat these. I just made them for kicks, chopped them up and threw them in the fridge. I eventually had a quarter or two though. Half the cheese ran right out so they were a tad on the bland side.

What I did eat for dinner: more kale salad topped with chopped cheddar and hard boiled egg. With a side of rice crackers topped with pasta sauce and cheese. I guess I was in a pizza mood tonight. Okay so more of a cheese mood than anything. Sometimes there’s just nothing better than cheddar.

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Evening

The time when grazing can really go haywire. This must be why they say you’re not supposed to eat after a certain hour. I don’t agree with the rule but I do understand it… It’s not because your body can’t metabolize it but it’s because all caution goes to the wind at night. I could easily take in a day’s worth of food post dinner on a lonely, boring night of snacking!

This evening started out with a nice chunk of my earlier made peanut butter cup cake (which is actually more like a thick, creamy peanut butter pudding and I’m a-okay with that!) served with peach yogurt.

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I don’t like “Fruit Bottom” yogurts because that “fruit” is just weird jelly. I scoop it out and trash it. The yogurt is already sweet and flavoured without having to stir the gunk in anyway.

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I also had one last tiny Tbsp of peanut flour that I was saving specifically for THIS:

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Peanut butter “ice cream”– aka frozen almond milk cubes blended with sweetener, peanut flour and a splash of liquid almond milk. Not the most successful ice creamy texture when trying to do this with my little Magic Bullet but the taste was darn fine.

I also dipped a couple dried prunes into my “ice cream”.

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I let a little time go by before digging into an apple.

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And then some apple and orange slices. With peanut butter.

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I then scrapped picture-taking because I already downloaded the pictures to my computer and didn’t feel like doing another download session to prove that I just finished off: A bunch of cold acorn squash; a mug of peppermint tea with cocoa; and a container of silken tofu blended with cocoa, stevia and frozen raspberries that had instant oats stirred into it and was topped with peanut flour drizzle.

And I’m spent. Time for the grazing monster to go to bed.

 

[With all this recent talk about portions, people not eating enough when showing their daily meals etc etc, please remember: What you see on the plate or in the bowl is what I ate but not necessarily the amount I ate. In many cases I had quite a bit more than what is shown. I just ate it before it made it onto the plate ;).]

 

 

Are you a grazer or a mainly meals eater?
I think the fact that I’m not on much of a schedule right now definitely contributes to my grazing habits. Some days I probably eat ten times a day. On a schedule I do a little better… either way I’m a snacker at heart though :)

Clear the Fog. Raid the Kitchen.

Life works in funny ways sometimes. I went from zero job prospects to suddenly hearing from four different places in one week, all coincidentally right after convocation. Something about the occurrence of the official graduation must have kick-started the trend eh? Coincidence? Strange.

No solid news on anything yet but it feels good to at least be finally getting some feedback. I’ve been hardly employed since school ended and it sure is draining on the psyche –> The post-grad fog sounds about right.

 

The “fog” has been leaving me a little drained, a little down. Nothing too extreme, but that unfortunately leaves little excitement to yap about.

What does one (ME) tend to do when feeling drained?

 

Raid kitchen.

Eat cereal.

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Honey Nut Chex is addicting. And I thought I loved it…until I kept eating it. Today, as I was nearly finishing off the last bits of the bag I realized that, you know what, I don’t actually love it that much. It’s a tad too sweet. The crunch – bang on. But otherwise I was just eating it to eat. I like my cereals on the blander side. Unless of course they’re granola.

 

Sadly, my cupboard raiding also brought me to this:

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NO! My Chocolate Amazing Grass powder has officially come to its end. When I first tried this stuff I wasn’t exactly wowed but eventually I came to love it! (Best = mixed into overnight oats) But alas, it is no more. And likely won’t be for a while (This stuff is pricey!).

 

Kitchen raiding helped me rediscover these gems I bought a little while ago at an Asian market.

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Vegetarian curry chicken. I know it says it’s vegetarian…and I know the ingredients say they’re made from soy… but I swear these HAVE to be chicken. They’re even pinkish on the inside!

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Either way, they’re delicious. And I’m not a vegetarian so I wouldn’t be devastated if they secretly were chicken.

I’ve been eating them atop big bowls of kale… and just by the handful.

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And when you’re at work and don’t have a kitchen to raid – eat sweets.

[So I said I’ve been hardly employed. That’s because I still work at a motorcycle shop. For my dad – I’m the pro bookkeeper. But it’s only once, maybe twice a week because I’m just so pro that I get everything done way too fast ;)]

Two-day old Timbits are fair game. The blueberry ones stay surprisingly fresh! I still haven’t decided if this is a good thing…

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Clif bars are great in situations of desperate hunger. Luckily I keep one stashed in my car at all times. Or did. This was the emergency one. I guess I better restock or I’ll be plum of out of luck during my next gnaw arm off scenario.

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Myoplex Lite bars are…less great.

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Good in a pinch but let’s be honest, hardcore protein bars just aren’t that good in general. I have yet to try one that doesn’t taste at least somewhat fake and chalky. I’ll stick with Clif, Larabar or plain old granola bars for my emergency snacks.

 

But my ideal snacks come from the fridge rather than the depths of my purse or glove compartment. I’m not a huge bar eater if I’m at home.

But a smoothie in a cone?

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Yes please. I’ll take two. Or five. Or just keep refilling the cone until the last drop of smoothie has been drunk.

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(I saw this genius idea on some blog at some point during the past month or so. LOVE it.)

But if I’m not feeling the scoop and slurp, smoothie in a glass will always do.

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And if I’m not feeling bars OR liquids –

Fruits, veggies, cheese…

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…and mass handfuls of tortilla chips dunked into salsa and zucchini guacamole all make for excellent snacks as well.

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Do you find that the less you’re doing, the less you tend to want to do?
I sure do. When I don’t have enough to fill my time, I get more drained and have less energy and motivation than when I’m keeping busy. It’s a vicious cycle and it sure isn’t very rewarding. Coffee, sunshine, long walks, long bike rides and good workouts in general definitely help though.

If you could pick only ONE snack to eat for the rest of the month, what would it be?
I’m thinking smoothies since they’re filling and summer appropriate. But I’ll cheat a little and say smoothie in a cone or smoothie topped with cereal since I need a little crunch in there too for optimal snacking satisfaction.

Shout-Outs

Facebook – the new news source.

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I would like to start off with a Special Shout-out to Facebook for keeping me informed about the world. Yesterday upon waking I was informed of Osama’s death. By lunchtime I was fully convinced that I needed to get out and complete my civic duty of voting in the Canadian election or apparently I would be banned from ever complaining about that state of affairs of the country. Just before bedtime I had already heard the full election outcome, including the NDP opposition and the elimination of the Bloc Quebecois. Seriously, if it weren’t for Facebook I wouldn’t have a clue what was going on in the world. Forget the news, all you need is angry young people’s status updates to find out everything you could possibly want to know.

 

Grateful Shout-outs to Andrea and Lipton Tea for sending me some of their newest Green Tea flavours to try. After my weeklong breakup with coffee, I switched to drinking green tea with breakfast every morning. I still do.

This morning, instead of my plain green tea I tried Lipton’s new Superfruit – Passion Fruit, Orange and Jasmine Green Tea. The subtle fruity hint was a nice change of flavour pace. I think I’m actually going to go brew some more to chill for iced tea.

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Saver Shout-outs go to KW Surplus for stocking me up with three vegan cookbooks I’ve been wanting to check out for $5.99 each. I’ve considered buying EDBV before at the full price of $24.95. Instead I got all three for less than that. Now THAT’s a steal.

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I’m not vegan, I just like cookbooks. And vegan food. And food in general.

Speaking of steals, I also scored a new mascara on sale for less than half price – L’Oreal’s Voluminous Million Lashes. This was a drugstore find, not a surplus store find. I highly doubt they’d sell current women’s makeup products.

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Lately I’ve been using Maybelline Volum’ Express One by One…not overly impressed. It’s clumpy and flakes. This means I have high hopes on the Million Lashes. Unfortunately I just skimmed some less-than-thrilled reviews. My hopes have almost been shattered.
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Tasteful Shout-outs go to oat bran and kale for providing me with solid breakfasts and lunches for three days in a row.

Oat bran #1 – Pumpkin oat bran topped with Greek yogurt and peanut flour paste

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Oat bran #2 – Pumpkin oat bran topped with cottage cheese and banana

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Oat bran #3 – Plain oat bran topped with Greek yogurt, banana and SF raspberry jam

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Kale Salad #1 – Kale massaged with balsamic vinaigrette and nutritional yeast, topped with tomatoes, baked tofu and baked sweet potato chunks all coated in honey-dijon mustard.

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Kale Salad #2 – Same as #1. I had a lot of leftovers.

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Kale Salad #3 – Same as #1 and #2. I had a lot of leftovers. Clearly they dwindled by the end.020

 

Sympathetic Shout-outs to my incapacitated and accident-prone brother, who received a broken collarbone from a heroic dive into the ground during an intense game of Ultimate Frisbee…the day before he was supposed to start his full-time labour-heavy summer job. He’ll be finding out later this week whether he needs surgery. Poor Boo.

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Time-Consuming Shout-outs to one of my new favourite sites: Pinterest. Don’t sign up for this if you need to actually get stuff done.

 

And Tuesday Shout-outs to everyone. Because, well, it’s Tuesday.