Category Archives: applegate

Worse Comes to Worse, It’ll Catch Fire

extreme wedding cake challenge, anybody? haha. “The worse that could happen, is our cake catches fire.” Wellll, I guess that’s a good motto to live by. I’ll do that from now on.

Why not have pumpkin-nanner oats for breakfast? I mean – the worst  that could happen is it catches fire 🙂

Thas’ right – my P.Chop rendezvous last night involved the discovery of two cans of pumpkin puree! I still have those three cans in my cabinet from the used foods store – but have been hoarding them for fear of using them. Last night was meant to be: I wasn’t even looking for pumpkin, but it was like the pumpkin was looking for me…I don’t scour the lower-most shelves for products that I know are out of stock until october 2010, but there they were: two solitary cans of (Price Chopper brand) canned pumpkin puree. Oh, hello. They came home with me.

I was almost nice enough to just take one…but then decided otherwise 🙂

The base today consisted of:

-equal parts oat bran, rolled spelt flakes, and rolled barley flakes

-wheat bran

-drizzle maple syrup, ground cloves, cinnamon, and nutmeg

-pumpkin puree, about 1/3 of a sliced ripe banana, and trail power

The toppings:

-chia/acai icing with some pumpkin stirred in

-milled golden flax

-golden raisins, crystallized ginger

-ginger preserves, cinnamon raisin PB

and bananas sauteed with some pumpkin, ground cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and maple syrup in a bit of almondmilk.

The cawfee? Stayed traditional with some Green Mountain French Vanilla again.

Yum! Pumpkin was a nice change of pace from my usual fruity-tropical concoctions lately. I missed it! And yes – of course this means there will be an abundance of pumpkin over the next couple of days.

I think I slept the latest I’ve slept in a while this morning! I didn’t roll into the kitchen until almost 8. It was sort of nice, but at the same time I felt a little off-kilter! That and, I had plans to drive into town and clean the office, which is a 2-hour foray alone – so I was a little bummed to be getting a late start. I knew the weather was supposed to be overcast, so I wanted to get everything done and hope there was still sunshine to enjoy afterwards!

I bopped my way into town, willing the dreadfully dark clouds looming in the distance to turn around and head back the other way. I wanted to go for another run/walk when I got home, and would love even more to squeeze in another quick ride! I can’t say for certain it worked, but by the time I got home it actually looked like it was clearing up – but still chilly!!

I waffled between snacks before heading out, and finally decided…

english muffin with honey-apple butter, applesauce mess

…it’s been ages since my warm applesauce messes! Needed to happen. Applesauce, some better n’ pb, dates, and pretzel snaps. And don’t forget about the delish english muffin 😉

Side note: I totally got one stuck in our toaster when I decided to have one at 1 am. I got so frustrated – I was tipping it upside down, shaking it, you name it – but I got it stuck under the little holder thing! haha. only me. Eventually I left it for morning. My mom was curious as to the situation, lol.

But, moving on – I leashed up Kaia and bundled myself up (re: HAT!) and set out. I love having her company, and – she keeps me movin’! The girl walks. Which is good! She’s not bad when it comes to running, either – she used to pull me all over the road, having to stop and sniff every little thing. I actually wasn’t sure if she’d be this way, so I was thinking I’d be mostly walking today, but it actually worked out quite nice. I still did mostly walking due to the roads being really soft and muddy, but got some good stretches of jogging, too.

I didn’t think we’d been out for too long, but by the time we got back it was 12:00, and we had left at 11:15! We definitely enjoyed ourselves. I cannot get enough fresh air lately. Not surprising, even though it was pretty chilly out. Eventually, though – I tried to buckle down on my paper writing. I didn’t get too far before a snack deliberation was in order.

Salty?

These piqued my interest yesterday (because Price Chopper still doesn’t have popchips – grr!) and figured I’d give them a try. They were good – but I realized I didn’t want salty. I’m sort of a sweet-snacker.

And decided on old faithful: kashi, spoonful of cranberry instant oats, almondmilk, chia seeds, portion of a vita-top corn muffin, raisins. Mmmm – hit the spot! Now I was tided over just enough to pump out that paper before breaking for lunch – which, even though you know about, thought you wanted to see it again. Who doesn’t?!

hello, beautiful.

This beautiful wrap also brought about some beautiful sunshine. Whaa?! It was supposed to be raining! But – this chica won’t complain about excess sunshine, so I soaked it up, naturally. [horse warning! :P]

And played with Jiggy! I debated taking Mel for a quick ride – my mom was gone for the day – but decided I didn’t want to go out alone. It’s not as fun to me! No biggie, though – I was just as content brushing them and giving them some lovin’. (Since, isn’t it obvious they’re sooo neglected?)

I did, however, transform myself into a walking, talking hairy monster. Lesson: Never wear fleece around horses, especially in the springtime. Every single hair they are shedding, will cling to you.

ALL RAKED!

Okay, so this is only a small portion of the raking that took place – but you get the idea! Yucky spring, makes everything look so bland.

HOLD. THE. PHONE.

Being the nommer that I am, eventually it was time for another snack. Uhm, holy cow. Has anyone else had these Yogi Granola Crisps? I found them and jumped for joy last I was in Hannafords, but am just getting to try them. *DANGER*: consume one, and you may feel the urge to consume the whole bag.

What's not to like? Oh, that the bag's too small? Touche.

Seriously, though – these are amazing. Do the ingredients get any better than that?! And the flavor? The flavor!! Holy cow – I’m one heck of a cinnamon-raisin fan, and these do not disappoint. I was in crunchy-crispy cinamon-y raisin-y granola heaven! They are perfectly sweet – not too much so that the oat-y, whole grainy taste was disguised, which is one peeve I have with many other companies.I enjoyed a few right from the bag before catching myself before the granola affair started.

…and fixed a proper snack! Okay, more like small meal, but who’s keeping track? (uh, okay – obviously my camera is, but I digress.)

The last of my flax tempeh in a repeat lavash whoop-de-do from yesterday – though I laid off on the cinnamon raisin PB and used a little more Better N’ PB this time. Gotta watch myself somewhere. And I keep forgetting about that Better N’ PB. It’s actually not that bad – lately I’ve been melting it into my night time mini bowls of oats – but it’s certainly got nothing on a real nut butter.

And, of course – pumpkin-chia greek yogurt. Ohhh, this was a little bit of heaven in a bowl right here.

I tinkered around online a bit more before my Mom came home and we went for a long walk out back. I haven’t been back there lately (we have about 35 acres – and there’s a trail leading from the back of our house to the other side of the “mountain”) and she wanted to show me all the water. So fun! I should have brought my camera along – it brings you to a creepy-cool old marsh at one point.

When we got back, the ribs Henry was making were just about ready, so I hustled up to make my dinner. Naturally – I had a gameplan, so the decision wasn’t the hard part 🙂

This is the dinner I intended to make yesterday, but just wasn’t hungry enough. I wasn’t really tonight (granted, it was “dinner time” at 5:15) but I wanted some cranberry-orange polenta, dang it! So I did the durn thang.

Not only that, but – I tried cottage cheese, and I didn’t hate it. I wouldn’t call it love, but it could grow to be that way. AND! It doesn’t stop there – I know this polenta is a winner because my mom loved it, too! She liked polenta to begin with, but she said she was weary of the cranberries “and jazz.” I was too, mom – I was too. I mean, I was throwing everything in there. But, it all resolved itself into one beautifully delicious mess.

For the polenta, I brought to a boil 1 cup water and 1/2 cup almond milk, frozen cranberries and orange zest.

Once boiling, I slowly whisked in 1/2 c. cornmeal. Once it was smooth, you can switch over to a wooden spoon, and season with salt, black pepper, lemon pepper, rosemary, and a dash of cumin. I also ended up adding some dried cranberries since I didn’t have a whole lot of frozen cranberries (tear.) as well as juice of half of the orange.

Slice up three or so biigggg leaves of fresh basil, and stir in as well, in addition to approx. 1/3 c. plain cottage cheese. Keep stirring over low heat until most of the cottage cheese curd-things (ew…haha) are all gone.

Wine and dine! I was thinking of adding some chicken sausage, but lately I’ve just not been that into meat…I dunno. I’m still all about fish and seafood, as well as some turkey stuff I eat (turkey bacon, and those applegate farms turkey hot dogs are actually amazingly delicious and have been my Tuesday night lifesavers) but for some reason just haven’t felt the desire for the chicken and ground turkey I used to have a lot more of. Oh, well.

Not to self: buy the right cornmeal next time you’re in the store! The only thing holding this polenta back from being 100% spectacular? The fact that I had medium grind cornmeal. I’m not the brightest crayon in the box, I guess. For some reason, this didn’t phase my mom at all. It didn’t make me hate it by any  means, but it did make me think about what could have been.

Dessert for two? Oh, let me process that right up!

Crystallized ginger, have I told you lately that I love you?

Yep – got my mom hooked, too 🙂 I kept it simple so as not to overwhelm her – so I did the same as last night. Banana, mango, dollop of greek yog, some acai powder, chai spice blend, and a tiiiiny sprinkling of sun crystals. Naturally, I topped my portion with granola and crystallized ginger.

What’s one “health food” you’ve introduced to your family that they ended up loving? I love sneaking it in there! For instance – my mom and sister and Kale chips. I think that was the most fun, because my sister hates to admit when she’s wrong – but she was all about those kale chips after finally being persuaded to just give them a taste!

Have a great night, everyone! Back to the bump n’ grind tomorrow…

p.s. anyone else watch Hoarders? My mom’s remarks – “I watch this show to make me realize your whole grains, nut butter, and jam collection is really pretty normal after all.”

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Extremes

First of all, thank you guys so much for your kind words after yesterday’s post. You’re all too sweet! I hope I didn’t sound like too much of a Debbie Downer – in all honesty, days like that, I can’t help but to laugh a little! Keeps ya from crying, ya know? But in all reality, nothing seriously catastrophic happened (okay, well, the computer crashing stinks, but it really wasn’t my fault, lol) but how often does everything happen all at once like that? haha.

Secondly, I don’t think I can ever ask what your favorite ______ is ever again! Why? I’m way too jealous of all the awesome jams you guys can find in your areas! Fig? Creme of Dates with Almond? Ginger? Vanilla chestnut? Seriously – every single suggestion about had my mouth watering! I think I would especially kill for Creme of Dates with Almond 😉

But anyways – on to today!
Lets just say…it was the extreme opposite of yesterday!


In the Base: bulgur, oats, TVP, and wheat bran mix, with cinnamon, nutmeg, goji berries, 1/4 banana, and orange zest.
In the “Icing”: greek yogurt, chia seeds, sliced pineapple, and almondmilk.
On the Top: flax, toasted coconut, toasted macadamia nuts, 1/4 banana, orange zest & wedges, pomegranate strawberry jam, Naturally Nutty White Chocolate Coconut PB, and poppyseeds – just because!

Holy Yum! Sometimes there’s no such thing as too much of a good thing, I guess!


I realized that this PB will still last a year if I don’t refrigerate it. Safe to say – it won’t last that long, so I’m leaving it out now! It gets too hard in the fridge. I like it to melt in! And with the new knowledge – I’m not so afraid to open the others *gasp*at the same time. For some reason I thought they went bad way faster.


This peanut butter is seriously amazing. I love that it’s not very chocolatey, and the coconut is allowed to take center stage 🙂 Probably because it’s white chocolate, not dark. Which, I actually just realized this morning as I was thinking to myself how glad I was that it wasn’t overly chocolatey. Uh, duh, Jess….just read the label. lol…

floating oats!

Yes – these were taken outside.
It was cold. But they look so much pretty outside, don’t you agree?


Sorry – I got a little photo happy this morning, I’d say. 

Before I left for my first classes I threw together some “overnight oats” consisting of plain oikos, almond milk, chia seeds, oats, goji berries, maple sizzurp, and a crumbled mate energy bar. I wasn’t sure if I would be able to make it home for lunch like usual because there was a possibility – weather permitting – that I would be shooting someone’s senior portrait. It was supposed to start snowing right around noon – when I get out of class – and we were supposed to shoot then, too. 

Well, the shoot got rescheduled because she was too sick – and good thing, too! It’s finally storming pretty darn good! Started right when I got off the phone with her. So, I [slowly!] made it home – the snow really started sticking to the roads, and fast.
And, with the wintery weather, couldn’t decide if I still wanted cold “over morning” oats! So I opted for the best of both worlds:

In the Pita Panini: turkey bacon, spinach, roma tomato slices, red onion, almond mozzarella, and maple-dijon mustard.
On the side: sundried tomato hummus, Schneiders butter bites pretzels, carrot, and Suzie’s spelt multi-seed flatbreads.


This. Was. Perfect. I think I’m in love with just about every component. That almond mozzarella is pretty awesome, as ws my first turkey bacon experience! 
It was made even better that I could see this every time I looked out the door…


I love the peaceful beauty of snow when it falls like this 🙂 Isn’t it gorgeous?
Are you a snow lover or hater?
It’s funny – I’ve never gone snowboarding or skiing a day in my life, and hate being cold. But I love, love, love, watching the snow fall.

Lunch was followed shortly with my dessert, something probably only appetizing-looking to me, but oh well!


Some seriously good oats. Everyone must put dried goji berries in their next batch of overnight oats. They get deliciously moist and…delicious. haha. Same as rehydrating them while your oatmeal boils. So good! I don’t really care for them dry…


It was about this time that I decided I would not be driving back for my night class! The roads were much too sloppy already – and even if the commute in wasn’t bad, I only knew the one home would be awful. I hate driving at  night in snow storms. It’s like driving in a tunnel – and really exhausts your eyes! Not to mention the conditions in general.


This is a really nice professor, though – so hopefully he’s relatively understanding. I feel bad because I hate looking like I’m copping out!

With this information, I could have ditched my plans for a quick, easy dinner since had I gone to class I’d be getting home quite late. But, I’d grown rather fond of my idea and decided to roll with it. It incorporated two new finds – one from my co-op trip the other day, and one from my Bob’s Red Mill order I received today!


I knew the hot dogs would come in handy, and have pretty good nutritionals, and have been dying to try out nutritional yeast since reading Mae’s blog.

So, I decided on Turkeys in a Blanket!


Okay, so this dun’ look so hot.
It. was. so. good.
There’s just something so great about comfort food made quasi-healthy, don’t you agree?


What’s the “blanket” you ask?
Oh, you know…just the Naan I made up the other day!
Crafty.
Turkey dogs all cozy in a Naan dough with sundried tomatoes and a cheesy ranch sauce?
And burnt broccoli?
Yes, please!
And, verdict on the turkey dogs? Oh my goodness. So quick, so convenient, and so good! They’re really moist – I was kind of expecting…I duunno. Dry weirdness? haha. But really. They’re quite good!

But that’s about it from me!
What’s your favorite “comfort food”? Whether you healthify it or not!


Also! Is everyone familiar with Tastespotting? It’s a relatively addictive website, and where a lot of my ideas stem from – it’s picture and one-liner based, so it’s easy to grab an idea and run, rather than follow a recipe. And, if you’re a recipe-follower, the recipe is provided via a blog link.
Well anyways! There’s a new website similar – but just for desserts! It’s called Dessertspotting, and Donalyn is looking for more participants, photos, recipes – be it a healthy recipe or not! Breakfasts, sweets, etc. I know even though I try to healthify many things, I view websites like these on a daily basis because it’s not forcing a recipe on you before seeing a photo or one-liner description. You can pretty much take the flavors and idea and adapt it to your nutritional needs and desires! That and – I know tons of you dear readers have beautiful and delicious recipes that are certainly deserving of a feature. So go ahead, get on the boat and start submitting to this wonderful community!

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