A Good-Bad Influence

Hiiii, chickpeasss! One day closer to Friday and the weekend – the countdown’s begun! Unfortunately, I’d almost rather rewind to Monday – we’ve had gorgeous weather all week, but tonight, dreariness rolls in. Go figure – I’m supposed to photograph a horse show on Sunday! That doesn’t happen in the rain. But, that’s Sunday, lets get back to the pure amazing that was today, shall we?

This morning ended up being the result of a little bit of everything! I had a plum that needed to be used, but only half of it was salvageable. I also craved red raspberries! Yet…I could only break off a small chunk of the frozen solid mass (anyone is more than welcome to ship me a plethora of fresh red raspberries, p.s. ๐Ÿ™‚ ) and so I made up for the lack with some frozen blueberries. What can’t blueberries save?!

On the bottom (said in a British accent, please):

On the top: (still British)

  • chia-flax icing
  • toasted slivered almonds
  • little bit of toasted coconut
  • chopped dates
  • Dundee’s Ginger Preserves
  • some of the best PB ever
  • and a compote-esque mixture of bloobs, raspberries, and plum simmered in some almond milk and a drizzle of sizzurp.

Not sure what “the best PB ever” is? Five words: Naturally Nutty, White Chocolate Coconut. It will change your life. Know what else will change your life? Silk PureAlmond original almond milk. They didn’t have Silk at the co-op, so I tried a new brand: Pacific Organics. No, it’s not bad. But I’ma thinkin’ Silk’s got a slight edge.

And more calcium! Never a bad thing for us chickies. (although, geek note: Silk has more calcium, less vit. D. Pacific Organics = less calcium, more vit. d…isn’t calcium absorption highest when accompanied by vitamin D?) Silk is also a bit creamier, and doesn’t get chunky in my cawfee. And it’s a whole heck of a lot easier to pour. Yes, I find the strangest things to pick at. But let’s be real – if I have to spill half the milk just to pour some into a cup, it’s not too convenient, eh?

Moving on, this bowl was accompanied with some Timothy’s Sugar Bush Maple coffee.

I was all set to go to class when my Mom mentioned a horseback ride and how she wished she had someone to go with since this would be her last nice-weather day off. Oh, how she wished I didn’t have to go to school, and maybe I should stay home because I have the bug. Yeah – I’ve got a bug all right. It’s called horse fever! I’m not kidding – she totally talked me into it. Bad influence, mom! But a good one, methinks. She did ask if we would be doing anything, and in all honesty – I have a paper that’s due for it Tuesday, and otherwise we do just about nothing in that class. Figured I could miss it…I deemed it “working from home” while we waited for it to warm up. Are you easily influenced by other people, or do you always march to the beat of your own drum, so to speak?

While Ms. Kitty sunbathed and gave the illusion it was 70 degrees out,ย I worked on stuff due Tuesday for my family violence class, and even managed to put together a couple paragraphs for the class I would have gone to this morning. So, I don’t feel too bad! Since I woke up and went about most of the morning with the “I have class today,” mindset, it was easy to be productive, rather than mess around online and such.

Although – I did make time to browse through a new cookook, too:

No, I’m not vegan…but I love veggie cookbooks, and I’d heard a bunch of good things about Veganomicon. I’ve already determined that it’s right up there with Moosewoods’ Cooking for Health. I also purchased the Moosewoods Simple Suppers, and had the intent for only that one, until amazon said if I spent $4 more, I’d have free shipping. Leave it to me to spend $20 more just to get free shipping. (heh, only sort of – when I saw they recommended Veganomicon I remembered all the raves and decided to just go that route!)

Before I knew it, it was 10:00 already…if my stomach hadn’t already been asking for a snack, I would have guessed it was hardly 9:00! I’m telling you…no matter what, I am always ready for something between 10 and 10:30. It’s a little bit ridiculous.

To quote my mother: “Hey…do you think you’ll like this bread? It was on bakery markdowns for $1…it’s got a lot of seeds and stuff, I thought of you.”

haha – she’s too cute!

And has a killer eye for good bread! It’s great! I honestly have no idea what kind of bread it is – all the label says is “Bakery Markdown – 50% off” and there aren’t even ingredients. But it is SO, so good! You can see all sorts of grains & nuts when you cut into it, and check out the bottom! I opted for a snack of toast with a nuked banana, mashed with some cottage cheese, cinnamon, and maple syrup.

huzzah, huzzah!

It goes without saying that I of course grabbed a date ball while I was up, and then we were off for our ride!

And a great ride it was – I had a serious blast. And Jiggy was definitely feelin’ fresh, too! He double-checked my stickability a couple times. He “just wants to play sometimes!” as I put it. I love the ones with spunk ๐Ÿ™‚ He was definitely tuckered by the time we got home, though – as was I! We ended up riding for just under 2 hours. It was 12:30 by the time we got back!

My mom and I were both more than ready for lunch, so I made us some pesto paninis. The other huge plus about that bread? The perfect size!

I’m a fan of the mini loaf, for certainly. In my panini was sundried-tomato & pepita pesto, garlic lovers hummus (yes, using two similar spreads was necessary), garlic and herb feta cheese, tomato slices, and some eggplant and spinach that I had sauteed with some balsamic vinegar.

This. was. killer. Pure heaven. To add to the heaven-like feeling?

Caramel oikos paired with the other half of my banana and a cherry-orange date ball. Died and went to heaven. Yep.

The afternoon consisted of moseying around, playing in the sunshine, browsing new recipes, and just plain enjoying life. I’ve been in such an amazing mood lately – and honestly, I credit it purely to having ridden so much this week. Well, that, and obviously being surrounded by supportive people. Sure, I haven’t been much of a socialite this semester – but on that same note, I feel like I’ve never been this continuously upbeat, optimistic, and excited for each day (well…most days…I still dislike school, but still love life, haha). I think I had a lot of negative energy last semester, and now I’m just free of it all ๐Ÿ™‚

Whoa, didn’t mean to get all heartfelt and mushy on you guys, haha. Is there anything that you think makes you happier than anything else in the world? I guess I can’t narrow it down to one – but being back home has done wonders for me – I’ve got a great relationship with my mom, a job I love, and lately – horses!

I’ve noticed lately I’m developing a relatively serious cashew addiction. Lately my dried fruit and nut addiction has actually multiplied by five hundred with all the date balls I’ve been processing up, but these Sahale Snacks Cashews are safe from date balls ๐Ÿ˜‰ They’re far too good (and maybe too easy) consumed alone! The planters jar I purchased this past weekend, not so much. Sure, I’m all out of dates – but I’m also almost out of date balls! What’s a girl to do when she’s got the processin’ bug?

The answer seemed obvious to me: make a small batch of ย Averie’s raw cookie dough balls, of course! I have a serious problem, I think I should come clean to you guys: I can’t get enough of these types of snacks. I think I enjoy making them as much as I enjoy eating them, though – reason why I only make a couple at a time! haha.

All together, with pretzel crisps and some almond mozzarella.

I opted for the cinnamon raisin variety, and they’re not true raw – I used maple syrup, omitted the agave & vanilla, and added cinnamon, raisins, and some flax seeds. Who’d ever think cashews, oats, maple syrup, cinnamon, raisins, and flax seeds could taste so good? They even get the mother seal of approval.

Dinner was stewed over all afternoon, and I finally settled on a Veganomicon inspiration of Pumpkin Saag.

I was a little uneasy how this would turn out. I used canned pumpkin rather than a “real” pumpkin – and I had no ย idea how much to use in relation to halving “3 pounds,” haha. I also added tempeh to the mix. Created by sauteeing onions and minced garlic in some olive oil, to which I added 1/2 c. pumpkin puree, as well as cubed tempeh. Seasoned with salt, garam masala, cinnamon and a dash of curry powder, and thinned a bit with some water and almond milk. Drizzled in a wee bit o’ honey, and then some chopped broccoli raab and baby spinach – cover, and let wilt. After “combined” well – add some lime juice, and if your a cashew addict like myself, top with some chopped cashews. Served with a whole grain naan for pure delicious.

Really – I know it looks rather terrifying – actually, I thought it was going to turn into mega fail shortly after I began…but this was phenommm. Paired with the soft whole grain naan – which, I was able to grill (!!! loved the flavor from it!) – it was pure heaven. Must. make. again.

And now I have a tupperware of pumpkin. I’m a little afraid with the fruit craze I’ve been going through lately, though – I’m not gonna want pumpkin oats! oooh – pumpkin yogurt?!

As a random question – what’s one healthy food you feel like you “should” love because everyone else does – yet you don’t? I noticed so many recipes that call for cucumbers lately – and I just think cucumbers are so boring! I don’t dislike them, but don’t bother buying them, haha. That and avocados. Not too much of a fan – but I don’t think I mind them “hidden” in foods like the tempeh gyro I made ๐Ÿ™‚

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14 Comments

Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe, Uncategorized

14 responses to “A Good-Bad Influence

  1. Love the eats. And ahaha about amazon I ordered the glee dvd the other day and was doing the same thing my mom was like add something else to get free shipping! That cookbook is sweet I got it from the library once, and can not go wrong with moosewoods :D, tomorrow gonna post the pancakes! Sent package today hope it gets there all in one piece.

  2. ahhh, I love you pictures! I just can’t stop telling you that. I got the smores coffee from Target and it is amazing! I’d pick horse-back riding over class anyday, that’s sweet that your mom convince you.

  3. I’ve never checked out the Moosewood or the other cookbook you have. I need to check them out! I can’t think of any food I’m “supposed” to like that I don’t, but cucumbers are pretty boring but I still like them. I can’t think to drink kombucha, so maybe that’s a good one. And I also love making raw treats like Averie’s, I just can’t get enough ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Veganomicon is SUCH a good cookbook! I got it from the library a while back and I so do not want to return it. But alas, I am broke and have no money to buy it. One day… I’ve tried out a couple recipes.. er, I’ve been inspired by a couple recipes would be the best way to put it I guess.
    Haha love it that your mom encouraged you to skip school!! Too cool. Skipping class now and again is good for the soul, methinks. AND she brought you some awesome bread… now that is a great mom ๐Ÿ™‚
    Cucumbers are boring to me too, not too big of a fan. The only thing that I can really think of that I don’t really like is arugula (not sure if I spelled that correctly) and basil. Not exactly big things but not a fan, nonetheless.
    I’m happy that you are happy ๐Ÿ™‚
    Have a great night girlie!

  5. Your mom is awesome! We let our kids go see Iron Man when it came out. Those kinds of things are actually a huge bonding thing and they will remember them forever!

    I need to try those balls. I am afraid I will like them too much though!!!

    Make pumpkin muffins! I can’t get pumpkin right now from anywhere and I have been craving them! I can live through your photos if you make them!

    I can’t stand the all mighty avocado. I want to like it, but ugh…it is so gross!

  6. omggggggggg to the sandwich. wow. yummmm. and blah cucumbers are no fun!

  7. I’m so happy you’re enjoying riding :). I used to ride and I miss it so much. I have found a passion in yoga, though, so that is good. I think the sunshine and warm weather makes me the happiest. It’s wonderful that you bought Veganomicon! I’m sure you will find that Isa can do no wrong. Honestly, every time I make one of her recipes I find myself saying that. But seriously, if you need in recommendations, I would be happy to give my opinion. I’ve always seen that recipe but never ventured into making it myself. Do you think it would work with another kind of pumpkin? I’m allergic to the generic pumpkin, but I can totally handle others, such as kabocha (MY LOVE!) I’ve got to agree with you on the avocado thing. I know they are super healthy and good for me, but I just can’t bring myself to like them. Yuck. As for cucumbers, I agree, as well, with the exception of mini/baby cucumbers. These ones are usually used to make pickles and are extremely sweet. If you can get them fresh from a farm or even a farmer’s market, they are a must.

    Have a lovely day!
    xox

  8. I’m jealous of all these cookbooks you have!
    I’m not a huge fan of tofu. I appreciate a good tofu scramble occasionally, but in generally I don’t like tofu and I think food bloggers use it a lot.

    Haha my roommate brought me home a loaf of bread last week for the same reasons: it has seeds and grains… Karla must like it… I did. It was delicious!

  9. I need those nuts! They look fantastic! An as always I am loving the oats. I have to admit, and call me crazy, I cant think of one food that I don’t like. There are certain foods that I prefer over others but nothing is repulsive to me and I’ll try anything. I think I have a palate/stomach of steel. haha I’d be surprised if I can find something, I’m always up for a challenge!

  10. I always have like a million things to comment on in your posts and then by the time I get to the end, I forget them all. I need a notepad!

    I’ll have to agree with you on the world’s best peanut butter. I thought I’d like the butter toffee better but that white chocolate coconut one is just amazing!

    I LOVE any bread with seeds and grains. I love the crunch!

  11. Haha I love that your mom convinced you to skip school! I think we deserve a day off every once in a while. It’s a good time to refresh ourselves! ๐Ÿ™‚

    I actually can’t think of a food I don’t really like! I guess I find celery really boring, but it adds a nice crunch to certain dishes.

  12. I must say that every time I open your blog, I’m amazed at your beautiful eats! Such thoughtful blog posts and such wonderful ideas. I have a huge distaste for cucumbers; I will only eat them if they are buried in a hummus sandwich with lots and lots of other veggies!

  13. Oh my my my i must say that your hummus pesto sammich looks so good. That combination is one of my all time favorites ๐Ÿ™‚

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