Oh, man…did everyone who hasn’t seen Food, Inc. yet get to catch it airing on PBS last night? I know I’m a little late on that train – I should have watched months ago – but I’m so glad I finally got to catch it. It. was. shocking. I’d been told “Jess, you probably shouldn’t watch that. you’re never going to eat again.” but I guess I wasn’t prepared for the footage of killing the poor baby chicks, and then inside the chicken houses. I’ll admit, after those Perdue scenes & the like, I had to zone out of it a little bit. Lets just say, I’m glad I’ve been slowly phasing out of meat, and now I’m not surprised that lately I’ve been feeling so full of energy and life – probably because I’m not putting sketchy meat in my system. I did miss the end because I was zonked – but I’d love to know everyone’s thoughts. Do you pay close attention to where your meat comes from after watching/before watching? What about other food like fruit, etc? I try to buy local and organic – but often it’s just not possible. Tell me somewhere in Vermont that harvests plums and bananas and I’ll buy…but chances are, you won’t be able to 😛
Luckily, my appetite wasn’t completely scarred from the education overload, and was able to enjoy some oats this morning. Delicious, all natural Bob’s Red Mill oats. And organic nuts and figs from the co-op. They probably traveled a long distance though. And a plum, but I’m pretty sure that was imported. And not organic. Peanut Butters been known to have some salmonella issues, too – but luckily, PB&Co is a little more sensible about their processing, I do believe.
Yeah, yeah – I said figs again. Had to wrap it up, you know. Third time’s a charm!
The base for this mornings figgy plum puddin’ (err…oats):
- 1 T. Bob’s Grains & Nuts Hot Cereal, 3 T. Bob’s 5 Grain, 1 T. Wheat Bran
- 1/2 c. coffee, 1/2 c. almond milk
- 1/2 plum, diced, 1 dried fig, chopped
- 1 T. chia seeds
On zee top:
- flax-chia icing
- candied pecans
- PB&Co Cinnamon Raisin PB
- and a quick compote of diced plum and chopped fig, simmered in a drizzle of pure VT maple syrup and almond milk
And that wraps up my figgy affair. For now.
Enjoyed with some organic, fair trade Green Mountain. Of the Southern Pecan variety, of course! This bowl was very autumnal, don’t you think? A bit ironic since today is Earth Day (yeah, today – not Tuesday like I went about thinking.) and this bowl is far from colorful and celebratory – but it certainly tasted celebratory. And you know what I just remembered? I wanted to give cranberry fig oats a shot. This mornin’ I was just feelin’ the plum, though!
I now introduce Part One of an unknown number of my newest feature: Dirty Kitchen Habits I Have and am ashamed to share but am anyways:
- I totally double-dip. (If it’s my own food I bought.)
- I’m apt to just grab any utensil laying around and use it. “Looks clean. I guess.”
- I’m not very good about washing my produce. I think after last night I’ll be getting better.
- “Oh, it’s past date? Oh well…think it’s good” “Oh, it’s got some mold? Just cut it off.” (well…within reason)
- I have a cupboard full of bulk-section nuts and dried fruit and it’s a mess. A sanitary mess – but just really unorganized. Wanna see?
- Sort of unrelated: I have a nalgene bottle that I am terrible about remembering to wash – my mom finally steals it when she notices. I say “You stole my healthfully beneficial algae.” (okay, only sort-of.)
- I may say I’m afraid to bake for people because I bake untrad. things – but that’s only half of it. I’m also deathly afraid I’ll lose a strand of hair or something in the batter and people’s thoughts of me will be forever tainted.
- I am the messiest eater known to man. I’ve finally gotten better, though!
What’s a gross kitchen habit you have? We all have them , right? I hope?
I grabbed another Naked smoothie for class today – this was definitely a “what was I thinking?” purchase. Check out all that soy protein. I was wondering if I was slowly throwing my hormones out of whack all the while thinking about drinking this, but I made a mental note to just stick to a serving so as not to go into complete overload. I did love the other Naked smoothie I had – and this is the only line they add soy protein to, so I’m not bangin’ on the company – but I wouldn’t buy this line in particular again. Ah well! I purchased it a couple weeks ago, before I went on my soy rampage.
Another reason I wouldn’t buy it again? While it tasted great (loved the coconut and pineapple) it had a nasty gritty texture. Not sure if that’s common for bottled protein smoothies, but it was kinda gross and I didn’t drink much of it. As soon as you took a sip you’d want more to drink to rid the grittiness from your mouth, so after a viscious cycle of that, I put it out of sight and sipped on my water. No me gusta. (I should note that it’s best buy date was mid-May – so that wasn’t the issue.) Luckily, I’m always prepared and had a couple date balls packed with my lunch that I calmed my belly with after class.
Did I mention before I left I made more date balls? Guys, this is a habit I need to break. I messed around by adding some protein powder today. They’re yummy. But, they always are. The victims today? Cinnamon raisin, coconut-almond with vanilla protein powder, and cranberry-almond with vanilla protein powder. I took some pics of the process. might do a write-up?
Speaking of photos. Would anyone be interested in a post on food photography? I get the ocassional question about what I shoot with & such – but truth is, I don’t work magic – my lens and natural light does. I’d love to do some compare/contrast shots and throw out some tidbits, if anyone is interested! If not…well…I won’t bore you 🙂 That being said – I haven’t been shooting a lot lately “in my free time,” and I need to get inspired to do so! I am so glad I have this blog, because it allows me a daily artistic release. Just gotta press that shutter button! I understand some of you probably really don’t care about the photography aspect – but for me, it’s equally split between a love for photography and a love for good food.
I wasn’t sure what I would do to kill time between class today, so I brown-bagged it (actually – Chico bagged it) with a sandwich that was a repeat of yesterday.
Curried carrot spread with tempeh and spinach and red peppah. Packed with some Dr. Kracker Pumpkin Seed flatbreads.
This was my first Dr. Kracker experience, and while I wanted to be floored at the amazingness, I don’t think this was the flavor for me 😦 A little too cheesy! I was expecting more pumpkin, and a little more salty, I guess. I’m not giving up, though – I think this was just my tastes, and I’d still love to try another flavor. It wasn’t so bad that I’m going to bum the box off on anybody, though. Anybody love Dr. Kracker and have a flavor suggestion for me? I’m open to ideas! (edit: on second “taste” – I had one with some cinnamon raisin PB once home, and enjoyed it quite a bit more than plain. Still excited to try other flavors, though.)
I ended up swinging by the barn and catching up with an old friend in between classes, which was quite nice. I love seeing how well everything is going for her, after having started riding with her wayyyy back before she even had her own barn. Now she’s got the most beautiful barn in the area, and is such a talented trainer and rider. Not only that, but she’s a hard worker, too. She has no problem doing her own dirty work and chores!
When I reported back for class, I found a note stuck to the door saying ther was no class. Great. Sometimes I wish teachers would think to e-mail…but on the same note, I’m glad she didn’t because otherwise I may not have stuck around to stop and see the barn girl. So, I just came home, played with the horses a bit, and got to work on an intense power point presentation due Sunday. I didn’t mention it yesterday – but I’m taking tomorrow off to work on it, too since I need to meet up with somebody. Why this was sprung on us last minute I do not know, but it is rather annoying. Hate when teachers think group presentations are a good idea. I mean really – we’re in college. It is incredibly difficult to find a time in which everyone can meet up.
I actually wasted way more time just trying to get a version of PowerPoint to work on my computer…apparently I’d only had the trial, so I messed around for eons trying to get it to work in one way shape or form. of course, snacking occured, in the form of continuing to play with protein powder!
I’m so glad Kelli sent me this Tera’s Whey protein powder to try – Thanks, Kelli!! I like what it did to the date balls (didn’t change the flavor much since I didn’t use a whole lot, but a little extra protein = a good thing!) and loved this protein cake. I saw what April does, and made up my own version:
- 2 t. Tera’s Whey bourbon vanilla protein powder
- 1 t. coconut flour
- 1 t. fruit puree oil substitute (I went to use applesauce, but I think I fermented it. Whoops.)
- 1 egg white
Nuked for about a minute? And it made this little bit of heaven. I enjoyed it with some Crofter’s Europe and cottage cheese. I love the vanilla taste of this powder. I’m a vanilla junkie 🙂
Still being frustrated with the powerpoint issues by the time 4:00 rolled around, I opted to get an early start on dinner. Enter: eggplant-quinoa rollups. It’s like the burrito veggie form of a double down.
- 1/2 of an eggplant, thinly sliced
- 1 tomato, chopped and seeded
- 1/2 red pepper
Seasoned with salt, pepper, and garlic – and sprayed with nonstick spray
At 425* for about 10-15 minutes on each side.
Stuff the eggplant with cooked quinoa with black beans – spoon a small portion in the center and roll.
And prepare the tomatoes and red pepper in some balsamic and fresh basil.
Serve and enjoy with some feta!
Yeah, afterwards i sort of asked myself why I went through the effort of trying to roll these up all cute and pretty when I could have just as easily chopped up some eggplant and thrown everything in the quinoa.
Oh, well. I realized I do that often. Am I weird, or does anybody else do that, too?
I’m still arguing with Microsoft. It’s making me beyond frustrated. I’m thisclose to losing it.