Food ‘tude: A Transition

When I was wee, I had ‘tude.

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Attitude, yes.

But also FOOD ‘tude.

When I was little, I was also a little picky

  • I didn’t like most real meat (aka steak, pork, ham…you get the picture. And I picked it apart meticulously. No fat or gristle would get near these chops. But hey, not like that’s a bad thing.)
  • I couldn’t do cheese overload (big stringy bites of excess cheese on pizza made me gag. McDonald’s pizza? Traumatizing)
  • I did not eat bananas. OR peanut butter (who was I?!)
  • Tuna? Forget it, I was all about the canned salmon sandwiches.
  • Restaurants? Give me chicken fingers. ALWAYS chicken fingers (though nuggets were best). With sweet and sour sauce.
  • Kraft Dinner all the way. Who needs real cheese when you can eat neon orange powdered cheese? (But not if it was mixed the wrong way. Only my parents knew how to make it right. Friends’ parents made it clumpy and weird. Yep, I gagged)
  • Bologna. Yep, I said it. And ate it. Lots of it. Always on white bread with mustard :)

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“Oh I wish I were an Oscar Mayer Weiner…”

 

 

I’ve been through many a taste bud transition over the years. My palette has expanded. My pickiness has nearly disappeared (though I still don’t like most real meat. And please do not pass the olives).

  • I eat more non-meat (veggie burgers, tofu, hummus, beans) than meat, though I’m not a vegetarian – so far.
  • Cheese? Yes PLEASE. Cheddar, mozzarella, goat, feta – I like it all.
  • Bananas and Peanut Butter are daily staples. I can’t imagine living without them.
  • I still like canned salmon on occasion but I love canned tuna. Any any fish is fair game when it comes in sushi form.
  • I haven’t eaten a chicken finger in years. YEARS. My chicken is usually a little less battered and deep fried these days.
  • Umm… Kraft Dinner is still beautiful in all its radioactive orange glory, though I haven’t had some real deal KD in a while. These days any form of mac & cheese fits the bill though.
  • Bologna…no thanks. Thinly sliced deli turkey? You bet. Usually eaten straight up, but still with the good ol’ mustard.

 

My food has also become significantly more fresh and green. Many of my today foods are similar to those of yesteryear, just with a little reconstruction (and a lot more vegetables). I’m pretty sure this is a transition many of us bologna sandwich kids can relate to.

 

Instead of bologna and mustard on white bread, how about tofu and mustard on spring mix greens? (Though the white bread is still kickin’ around on the side :))

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Instead of nuggets with a side of fries, I’ll take my salad with a side of fries.

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Though want to do it one better? How about a side of Holy Moly Guacamole (aka the best protein-packed guacamole ever) and a Crystal Light Froster?

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My pasta plates are usually more green than orange (though sometimes you just gotta go with the plain old mac&cheese).

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My canned fish lies more often on leaves than bread.


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Even my sweets have been switched up.

Instead of bright goopy Gushers, I’m more into bright goopy jams (It’s rhubarb! It’s homemade. It’s delicious. Though I’ll admit, so are Gushers…even though I’m pretty sure their “real fruit” isn’t quite as real as the rhubarb in my jam)

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Twinkies in my lunch? Naw, today I’ll take some Genisoy multigrain Cinnamon Streusel Sweet Crisps instead (which are insanely delicious FYI).

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I’m also pretty content with yogurt and berries. Perhaps with a cookie on the side.

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I may no longer eat mad amounts of bologna or drive ‘Lamborghinis’ but I still have plenty of ‘tude.

Don’t mess with the muscles! (I only wish I were tough)

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And definitely don’t mess with the meals.  They pack some POWER.

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Side note: I let my mom try my Great Greens breakfast smoothie the other day.

Her reaction?

Cough, gag, *face remarkably similar to that of someone having just taken a hefty dose of Buckley’s*

“I think…it’s an acquired taste…”

 

I swear green smoothies CAN taste good. I just like them nice and earthy. Guess I should have eased her in with much one heavier on the fruit and much lighter on the straight cocoa powder, barley grass powder and thick handfuls of collard greens. Oops. Next time, Mom.

 

What food did you HATE as a child that you LOVE now?
What food did you LOVE as a child that you HATE now?

Midterms No More

As for about 6:00 today, I finally finished all of my midterms. Done, adios, sayonara. I hardly even know what to do with myself now that I don’t have piles of notes to highlight and textbook chapters to read.

Oh wait. I should probably get started on that research proposal paper and visual analysis project that are due in the next few weeks…School sure knows how to keep you on your toes.

But not tonight. Tonight I shall:
Blog
Paint my toenails
Catch up on Jersey Shore
Go to bed before midnight
The small luxuries that I haven’t been able to enjoy since reading week ended.

I should probably stretch too, since I’ve been sitting/idle for about 90% of the past two weeks. Bump on a log represent.

Not gonna lie, I don’t have a ton to say or anything exceptionally special to show since I’ve literally just been studying for days.

 

A sampling of my eating on a midterm day – Today I ate:

Spinach tuna wraps with an orange for BREAKFAST. Why not right…
Tuna was mixed with a little light mayo, a little light sour cream, a little dijon mustard.

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This was after a small bowl of Vector cereal.

Yeah lunch definitely came early after that “meal”.
So what was LUNCH?

A small piece of toast topped with hummus and tabbouli

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A bowl of unsweetened applesauce, cottage cheese, Multigrain Cheerios, a few soaked cashews and a blob of peanut butter dessert hummus.

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And several bites of this rendition of Carrie’s Chocolate Tofu Brownies. Rendition meaning I halved it, arbitrarily measured ingredients, didn’t add quite enough sugar and didn’t cook it quite long enough. I’m pretty sure I could have devoured the whole thing pre-baking though. This dough was basically pudding. Mmm.

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I also had a big, crunchy apple at some point.

Oh and a spoonful fingerful of peanut butter probably after every single “meal” and snack throughout the day. I’ve been doing this a lot lately… no wonder I feel cushy, that’s a lot of peanut butter!

 

After writing my midterm I came home to the smell of chili. I’ve never been a huge chili fan but despite this fact I couldn’t keep the spoon out of the pot. Eventually I scooped it onto some steamed broccoli and spinach and topped it with Frank’s. Ballin.

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And then I was back to the peanut butter. After a mini bowl of yogurt, muffin and more dessert hummus. Among other things.

I feel like I need expandable pants. Sweatpants time.

I’m pretty excited not to have to be completely glued to my chair anymore now that midterms are done. I’ve been getting pretty antsy. My legs hate me! So does my body in general. Stress just does a number on the body, doesn’t it. I have the worst cold I’ve had all winter. Hence the extra need to get to bed before midnight (as mentioned atop in my small luxuries list).

But first, I have a date with the Jersey Shore crew.

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CSN Giveaway Winner and Recovery Eats

Somebody’s space is getting spruced up tonight.

But who’s might it be?
Let’s wait and see…
Oh em gee
It’s paijery!

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Congrats Gal! A CSN Stores shopping spree is coming your way :)

 

Speaking of spaces being spruced…
Okay wait forget that, I’m not speaking of that at all.
But I AM speaking of my weekend, which involved a late night of long overdue destressor dancing and subsequent recovery from said night, along with recovery from a draining week. Needless to say I was very tired, fairly grumpy, and slightly bummed through a chunk of it.

You know what didn’t help? Excel’s new Citrus Mint gum. Intriguing, right? Yeah no. Only buy this if you’re one of those people who actually enjoy the taste of Halls cough candies. I am not.

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You know what did help though…why a little baking of course!

Irish Soda Bread. Minus the tahini, plus some applesauce.

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Easy peasy Pumpkin Cornbread Muffins. Minus the stevia, plus sugar free maple syrup. I have none of those sugar baking substitutes so these were very minimally sweet, but still perfect little cornbread-y babies.  033

Miss Chocolate Covered Katie also made a couple appearances in my kitchen this weekend, since she always knows how to put a smile on everyone’s face.

I made her Breakfast Pizzert for the first time a while ago and although my first attempt turned out a little on the gummy side, I still loved it.

This time when I tried it again, I followed the original recipe much more closely and ended up with the a perfectly baked, rave-worthy breakfast pie.

Topped with yogurt, blueberry syrup and strawberries…

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…or apricot jam and Quark cheese…or really any way you please, this is one breakfast I will continue to eat with ease! (Geez, my rhymes are cheese)

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I also whipped up Katie’s tofu whipped cream” the other day, some of which I ate on top of a protein cake. The protein cake wasn’t so good but the “cream” was amazing. Um… literally. I stirred a scoop of chocolate Amazing Grass into the last bit of it. Chocolate whipped cream anyone? So so good.

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Wait, we’re not done yet. There was also some CCK Coconut Banana Butter up in my kitchen today. The banana I used wasn’t too ripe so the mixture was a little gummy, as you can see, but the flavour? Bang on.

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Thanks for the kitchen fun, Katie!

As for MY weekend creations… well they’re never recipes. Just plates and bowls loaded with veggies, fruits and whatever other goodies I find in my fridge.

Appearance of the Irish soda bread from above.

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Salad with leftover lentils and beans, zucchini dressing.

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More greens, more zucchini dressing.

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More greens, less no zucchini dressing. I went crazy and used Greek instead. Along with some leftover couscous mixed with salsa and hummus, plus a hunk of pita stuffed with plain tofu, mustard and BBQ sauce.

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Is that seriously more greens? Okay so these may include a few days prior to the weekend as well. I don’t eat bowls of veggies 5x a day.

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I probably eat fruit 5x a day though. Addict.

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And French Toast? Just once. This morning. Cinnamon Raisin Ezekiel soaked in a mixture of egg whites, splash of almond milk, splash of POM juice; topped with cafe latte flavoured yogurt and banana slices.

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I’ve had this loaf of Ezekiel bread in the freezer for LONG over a year now… slightly freezer burnt maybe but french toast it and you can’t possibly tell ;)

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Now I’m off to start up again on studying for my first midterm of winter term on Wednesday. Already, yikes. From this week on out I have a test or assignment due every week until exams start (minus reading week…come on February!) so this is going to be a busy term.

I’m ready for it though!

…please don’t throw that back in my face a couple weeks from now when I’m ripping my hair out.

Hope you all had a great weekend!

The Cold Combat

So the classes start up and so do… the COLDs. They kind of go hand in hand, right? Winter classes and winter colds? I dunno but I’ve been fighting!

My How to Fight a Cold How To.
(Ignore the redundancy)

THE BIG BANG THEORY

 

*Eat Fruit-Based Breakfasts

Apples and oranges and bananas and pineapples OH MY. Plus plain yogurt and granola and peanut butter since fruits alone do not stick your ribs.

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Sidenote: THIS peanut butter = spectacular. I was all out of normal PB (PB&Co is great but sometimes you just need the plain stuff) and had to get a new jar. This was one sale and I’m pretty sure I had heard good things so I tried it. Two thumbs way up for MaraNatha.

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*Drink Fruit-Based Smoothies

Or more specifically, Angela’s Flu-Buster Clementine Creamsicle Smoothie. I’ve had it two mornings in a row now and it is love at first sip.

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This one had a handful of spinach added to it for an extra nutrient kick. Hence the extra green hue of clem smoothie #2.

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*Eat Your Greens

But make sure to protein pack them with TUNA mixed with fat free sour cream, dijon mustard and Worcestershire sauce. Or however you prefer your tuna.

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Or just top with a blob of hummus (after eating a few more blobs by the spoonful). And add lots of salsa to everything. Just because it tastes good.

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*Add Veggies to Everything

We obviously can’t eat ONLY veggies and fruits all the time, so add them into and/or on the side of wraps and sandwiches.

These are two halves of two different panini-pressed wraps (I got a press for xmas!): one with sweet potato hummus and spinach; the other with tofu slices, mustard and BBQ sauce.

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Veggies on the side of an English muffin with tofu, mustard, BBQ sauce (I told you this was one of my new favourite combos).

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*Bake with Cranberries

These little jewels have about a million benefits and I’ve had a big bag frozen in the freezer for a while now so I decided to add them to a bunch of stuff. They might not be advertised as cold combaters but I doubt if they’re hurting my cold any! I’ve baked a couple cran goodies, but I’ll put the recipes up in a separate post.

Sneak Peak: PomCran Muffins & Crustless Cranberry Pies

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*Don’t forget your Vitamins

I take a multivitamin, vitamin D, vitamin C (though we’re out right now. how convenient for cold season!) and vitamin B12 every day. I take an Omega 3 vitamin when I remember. I’ve been doing this for as long as I can think of so I don’t know what difference it really makes in cold combat but it certainly can’t hurt. I have this fear that if I stop taking them I’m suddenly going to come down with every sickness imaginable since my body is so used to them. Irrational maybe but it keeps me popping my vitamins everyday!

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*Exercise

Exercise kind of sucks when you have a cold that involves coughing and makes your lungs feel like they are 10lbs heavier and half-filled with liquid. But I’ve been sticking it out because it still feels great afterwards, like those pools of sweat are filled with cold bugs just leaking right out! I’ve just been letting myself have a few “breather breaks” the past few days. Aka running on the treadmill is 3x harder right now so I step off for 10 seconds here and there when I can’t breathe, which seems to be more often than I would like right now…Naw good!

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*Chug Water

Hydrate Hydrate Hydrate. C’est magique! I think this is common knowledge (I hope!).

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I also think all of my “Tips” are common knowledge but laying them out just so makes me feel helpful. At least to myself :)

 

What is your best cold combat tip?

I hope you’re all managing to stay healthy and sickness free! (or at least fighting it off with a vengeance)