Category Archives: teddie

Chutney Chickpeas (and TEDDIE!)

I finally got the chance to play with my favorite little furry four-legged today!

…just a shame Vermont can’t plow roads this winter. I could have made it there much faster? Even in this picture you can see where someone started swerving!

With all the fashion blogs out there today, I thought I’d join in on the trend. Here I am modeling my gloriously fab boots, snow-pant breeches and Carhartt knock-off.

This is why I’m hot.

Naturally, being so bundled up didn’t make for optimum riding gear. So why not just hop on bareback (er…blanket-back…) and go for a snow ride?

That was Teddie’s thought as he took great joy in making me get an additional workout trying to climb atop him.

He may be short, but damn, when you’re wearing bulky clothing, you’re sinking up to your butt in snow, and you have an excited pony walking in circles around you because he wants to visit with everyone, it’s a lot easier to say “hop on” than it is to actually hop on.

When I finally got halfway on he was at least patient enough to stand still while I made like a seal as I flopped the rest of myself up and over.

We had fun. Maybe we’ll just become snow riders for the rest of the winter. Or pick up skijoring.

And in case you thought I was too hot to handle before, it got even better when I put my helmet on:

I realize I look like dorkus maximus, but look at Ted!

daaaaaaaamn! Oughta have put a warning sign on this blog.

See all that snow on his bridle? He took great pride in trudging along with his nose buried in the snow while I thought he was going to roll on me. Luckily, the only time I had to bail was when I accidentally steered him into a drift that was up to his belly. It was probably deeper than that, but his belly kept him from sinking further, luckily.

Sorry, Ted.

Oh,yeah…anyways. About that food thing.

Truth be told, when it came to dinner tonight, I almost just sauteed up some spinach, garlic and barbecue sauce with barbecue tempeh and called it a night. And if I didn’t have to work tomorrow, I totally would have.

Sauteeing spinach in olive oil with garlic and BBQ sauce is way better than it sounds, fyi.

But, I kind of like making enough dinner the night before working to be able to pack an easy lunch to bring the next day. Sauteed spinach wasn’t going to cut it.

Especially sauteed in garlic. I can still smell my breath from having it for lunch, and that was 5 snacks and a dinner ago.

I might as well just dedicate this post to Rachael Ray, what with using her bench scrape, knife and recipe.

They were Christmas presents! (…but I still love Rachael Ray.)

I’ve made this “Chutney Chicken One Pot” and posted about it before – well, raved about it before – but just linked to the recipe with all of my swaps written separately.

Well, usually I don’t break my “link-back” rule, but since this is one of my favorite meals (I’ve gotta go there) and I’ve made some substitutions over the couple times I’ve made it, I’m just going to go ahead and post how I make it.

Chutney Chickpea One-Pot

serves 2 as a side, adapted from Rachael Ray’s Chutney Chicken One-Pot

This dish is easily customizable to your likes and dislikes. Check out my notes after the recipe! Not only that, but once you’ve got everything chopped it comes together in a handful of minutes! And I know I just talked about a fear of long ingredients lists – and this one is…but it’s SO easy and you’ve probably got it all on hand.

  • 2 t. olive oil
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/4 c. diced celery
  • 1/4 c. diced green or red peppers
  • 1/4 c. diced dried apricots
  • 2-3 dried Turkish figs, chopped
  • 1 c. chickpeas
  • 1/2 t. ground cumin
  • 1/8 t. curry powder
  • 1/2 t. allspice
  • 1/8 t. ground ginger
  • 1/4 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T. dijon or whole-grain mustard
  • 2 1/2 T. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 c. vegetable broth
  • 2-3 handfuls baby spinach

Heat the oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Add in the apple, onion, celery and peppers. Saute until slightly soft. Add in the spices, dried fruit and chickpeas. Stir and then add in the broth, applesauce, vinegar and mustard. Reduce heat and bring to a simmer. Simmer about five minutes, until sauce thickens slightly. Add in the spinach, stir and cover. Remove from heat, leaving covered until spinach wilts.

Serve with some crusty bread or a grain!

Last time, I made it with tofu instead of chickpeas, and mixed in cooked bulgur instead of serving it with bread. There were other differences, but I also didn’t add the spinach. I much prefer it with spinach! I also think I preferred it with bread instead of a grain.

I love dishes that mix a sweet element with savory, and this one hits the nail on the head. Change it to your tastebuds, though. I chose to use applesauce instead of jam because I figured jam would be pushing the envelope on too sweet. You can also easily use a bit less dried fruit, and use what dried fruit you have on hand. I love apricots and figs, but raisins are good, too!

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Filed under apple, beans, bread, chickpeas, cooking, equestrian, food, healthy cooking, healthy living, horseback riding, pony, recipe, snow, teddie, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian, veggies, vermont

Going Bananas over Cashew Butter

You may recall that I’m often saying I’m relatively laid back. Not much ruffles my feathers, if you will.

This morning, I realized something.

I realized that’s all lies.

Do you see what's missing? It starts with "b" and rhymes with "shmershmanas"

Because I get upset about bananas.

I was somewhere in the middle of demanding my sister tell me what happened to my bananas, prompting her to tell me if she’d eaten any, and rifling through her purse and lunch box before I stopped myself and had this sudden epiphany of “oh my heavens, what has become of me. I’m being selfish over bananas.”

Sure, you can have my kidney.

Hell, take my liver, too!

But heaven forbid you eat my bananas. Because then the pancake batter that I’ve so lovingly prepared to go along with those non-existant bananas will, in fact, hit the fan.

Muffins I made Tuesday. There were 9 large ones and a dozen mini ones. I've only eaten one. None of my food is safe around here these days.

I guess it’s a good thing, so I’ll just look at it that way. Even if last night I had three bananas left and this morning, 0. The other night, I still had a quarter of a loaf left of  an orangey-coconut barley flour loaf, and the next morning, none. So finally I made these muffins that were politely requested, using barely any sugar, and braced for the “these are terrible!” remarks, but apparently that wasn’t necessary.

I think we have secret leprechauns hiding in our cabinets that come out at night-time, because there’s only four of us. March is just around the corner, you know.

Luckily, being rendered banana-less doesn’t mean the world has stopped turning. I don’t think. I mean, I’ve still got three more days to go before I make it to the store because I’ve pledged no more groceries until Sunday, but I’m pretty confident that the apocalypse won’t come because of this occurrence.

Knock on wood.

Being all thrifty and wanting to save money lately, I decided to take it upon myself to make cashew butter.

Cashoo butter, if you will.

I guess I’m not really sure if that makes sense, since I don’t recall how much I spent on those cashews, but I’m sure the price would end up being pretty close.

At least I feel like I’m being more resourceful/economical/thrifty.

Do these pictures convey how runny it was?! Because it was. I was so giddy. It is so delicious. Cashew butter is easily my favorite nutbutter. So smooth and creamy all on its own. I refrained from adding anything to it, because I just love the plain cashew flavor it has on its own!

Well, I did add a bit of oil – but just because based on everything I read, it tends to be on the drier side, and the jar of it I had prior had oil in it, too. You could omit it, but I wanted it runny so I added it. It’s negligible, really, so you might as well just add it since it improves the consistency that much.

Cashew Butter

  • 1 1/2 c. salted cashews
  • 1-2 t. olive oil

In a food processor, blend cashews first, it took me about 5 minutes. When butter-like in consistency but a bit dry, add in the oil. Blend about 4-5 more minutes, until silllllky smooooth!

Such a shame all that gets wasted, too difficult to scoop out and into the jar…

Hah, syyyyke. You wouldn’t think I’d let all that creamy, cashewy goodness go to waste, did you?! You’d be silly.

I’m not sure, though. Between my pancake breakfast for lunch on Tuesday, and my clean-out-the-cashew-butter with bread lunch today, I’m probably being shunned by other health bloggers blog-wide. Please don’t hate. (appreciate?)

If it makes me look any better, at least the cleaning up was mainly done with homemade pumpernickel…which I realize is actually terribly unappealing, but there will be a post dedicated to this baby soon.

Although, speaking of babies – maybe I ought to mention how much of a rockstar Teddie was today after his little vacation. Oh, yes – it was 20* when I woke up this morning and was about ready to go running around outside in shorts and a t-shirt it felt so warm. Which meant Teddie’s sweet vacation must come to an end.

I thought his little eyeballs were going to pop out of his head when he saw a new scary monster in a new corner (now there’s scary things in all but one corner – eyeroll) but he was surprisingly gentlemanly about it. Truth be told, it scares me, too – it’s a cart (to be pulled behind a horse) that is quite large and propped against the wall.

He probably knows exactly what it is and is afraid I’m going to hook it up behind him. Maybe that’s why he was so good undersaddle…hmmmmmmm…

Now. Go protect your bananas. And make some cashew butter while you’re at it.

Are you “possessive” over anything? I should clarify that I wasn’t legitimately upset about the banana issue, but I was a little baffled and a little disgruntled I couldn’t have my grilled banana this morning. Eh well, it’s good for me to start having to think outside of the banana.

In terms of the baked stuff, I enjoy sharing because I know what the alternative is and I’d rather the fam eat homemade stuff than pure sugar from a box or bag :/

Have you ever made your own nutbutter? What was your favorite combo?

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Filed under baking, banana, breakfast, food, food blog, health, healthy living, horseback riding, lunch, muffins, nut butter, pancakes, recipe, teddie, vegan, vegetarian

Surprises

Today was full of fun surprises!

I was once again pleasantly surprised at how good my homemade almond butter was on pancakes this morning…

…and was also surprised to learn that Vermont has a maple law…which is giving McDonalds some flack about their new oatmeal!

“What we understand, is there is no actual maple in the [McDonald’s] product being advertised. Vermont maple law and regulations are very specific for how the term maple is used in advertisements,” Kelly Loftus, VAA spokesperson told Slashfood. “It is illegal to use the word maple on a product unless the sweetener is 100 percent pure maple. Artificial maple flavoring should be clearly and conspicuously labeled on the principal panel with the term ‘artificial flavor’.”

Read more: http://www.slashfood.com/2011/01/10/a-sticky-mess-for-mcdonalds/#ixzz1BcP2Afr7

Basically, Vermont is requiring them to give option of a tablespoon of real Vermont maple syrup, a teaspoon of Vermont maple sugar, or eliminating the “maple” advertisement since all it is is fake flavoring.

Can I get a hell-yeah for Vermont, please?

I was pleasantly surprised to see that Teddie doesn’t hate me after all…

…even if all I did today was dote on him.

When I got home, I was surprised that the mail hadn’t come yet…but was hungry and went ahead and made lunch anyway.

When it finally came, I’d be lying if I said I was completely surprised that I had two big “presents,” but I was surprised at what they contained!

Package numero uno – from the wonderful Blue Eyed Heart.

Blueberry Muffin Larabar?! I was pleasantly surprised when I heard of this new flavor. Yes, I was the girl eating a Dunkin’ Donuts blueberry muffin every. single. day. all through high school. I cannot. wait. to try this baby. How surprised was I to learn it’s more cashew-based than almond-based? Very – but that’s definitely a good surprised. Eye heart cashoos.

The most perfect-est pumpkin bran muffins ever. I broke into one STAT.

And the primary reason for the package: sprouted wheatberry bread.

My mom always said not to beg, and that it doesn’t get anybody anywhere. Well, I sort of begged for this bread and it got me a sprouted wheatberry bread addiction. That could be seen as a good or a bad thing. I choose to see it as a good thing.

The cutest lil’ mini loaf, too! I can’t wait to have mini PB&Js. If it lasts that long.

I think I’m convinced that I ought to try making my own sprouted bread now. That is, if I can’t convince her to get into business making and selling this bread 😉

I wasn’t just surprised with this month’s Foodzie Tasting Box

…I was just about awed!

Never, ever heard of Sun Dried Nectarines before. Cannot. Wait. to try them.

I expect at least half of the Foodzie boxes to be something I wouldn’t like, but that’s okay with me. I enjoy the surprise aspect, and don’t mind getting some things (like natural beef jerky) that I can pass on to someone else. That’s why I was so awed when I realized just about everything in this month’s box is a keeper!

While I usually like sweeter teas (Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride and Gingerbread, anyone?) these Runa teas were fun to try!

It certainly surprised me at how fresh the leaves seemed compared to the usual teas I drink!

Enjoyed with a cracker flat that L sent me…

…I got a little hungry while waiting for my tea to heat 😉 I can’t say I’m surprised at how delicious these are, though – spelt and cinnamon raisin are two things that have always had my heart.

Well, maybe not always. I don’t think I was a four-year old running around demanding my mom to make cinnamon-raisin spelt bread…but maybe.

I was surprised to realize I hadn’t had any plans for dinner, but then realized I was craving pasta

…which didn’t surprise me at how wonderful this simple meal was. Sometimes, good ol’ pasta just hits the spot, don’t you think?! Just a serving of whole wheat pasta, cooked and then tossed with:

  • drizzle olive oil
  • fire-roasted tomatoes
  • roasted red peppers
  • garlic
  • tempeh
  • fresh parsley

served atop collard greens sauteed in a bit of olive oil with red onion and garlic, and all garnished with humnut cheese and more fresh parsley.

I actually really hate fresh parsley, I’ve just been eating it because for some reason I decided I needed fresh parsley for something. At this point, I don’t even remember what I wanted it for. I just know I have a lot more to eat…

What have you been surprised by lately?!

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Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, food, foodblog, foodzie, health, health food, healthy living, hummus, italian, lunch, nut butter, pancakes, pasta, recipe, spelt, teddie, tempeh, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian, vermont, whole grains

A Day in the Life

4:10 am: Time to get up! Wait…it’s only 4:10? Ugh. I’m sort of hungry…

5:45 am: Time to get up! Ew, it’s going to be so cold tonight.

6:00 am: Crisis. Only one banana left. Do I have it in oats this morning, or as my snack this afternoon?

6:01 am: snack this afternoon.

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6:05 am: I really need to get back in my photo groove and start taking more aesthetically appealing food photographs…

-enter blogging and breakfast here.-

6:30 am: I have no idea what I am having for lunch. I don’t have anything made. Ugh.

6:31 am: Chickpea salad.

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– pack lunch.-

6:40 am: Get ready. Enter the Great Hair Dilemma. Keep singing “a day in the life” by the Beatles because you decided your blog topic of the night.DSC_4383

6:55 am: All done. I hate this sweatshirt. I really need to do laundry.

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7:00 am: WHERE ARE ALL OF MY SOCKS?

7:02 am: Whatever. This works too.

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7:03 am: Crawl on hands and knees looking for lens hood that just fell off your camera because you were taking a picture of your feet.

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7:10 am: Get ready to brave the outdoors. Warming up gertrude comes first

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This is warm compared to what it’s supposed to be tomorrow.

7:12 am: Feed Thing 1 and Thing 2.

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7:17 am: Play with icicles.

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7:22 am: Say “see ya lata!” to the puppernaut and set sail for the wild blue yonder barn.

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8:00 am: Thank God for the temperature dropping – I would have broke a sweat with that extreme heat from before.

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8:02 am: Wish you had a real winter coat for the barn. Start picking out the mares & teddie’s runs.

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8:08 am: Reach face freeze point. Can’t feel face. Mittened hands are cold ad making photography extremely difficult. Persevere.

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Jewel is so unpleased by Teddie’s actions.

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What a dashing young lad.

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8:24 am: Really can’t feel face. Leave for work.

8:48 am: Decide coffee is necessary, even though you’ve already had your cup.

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Mostly decaf, anyway. And a cup that size lasts me all morning into afternoon! Though the real reason I stopped was because I didn’t think I’ packed enough food.

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Was overjoyed to find a KIND bar at the gas station. Wonder if anyone else ever buys them, as the code isn’t even in the system.

8:58 am: Arrive at work. Furnace is broken. Oh yay.

10:00 am: I’m hungry.

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And want my “vitamins.”

Notice bar is really out-dated.

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Decide you want crackers and hummus anyways.

12:24 pm: Holy moly it’s lunch time. Hm. Maybe I’d rather make an open-faced pb & pear sandwich with my bread than just use it for dipping into my chickpea salad…

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2:00 pm: Am I hungry? I think I’m hungry. Oh, maybe I just want a ginger chew…

3:45 pm: Okay now I’m hungry. Bypass banana, save it for tomorrow. Try KIND bar. Ooooh – ver ver good!

4:01 pm: Why are all these customers asking me my name all of a sudden today? Am I being rude? Are they going to report me?

5:26 pm: Almost time to go. I’ll do busy work until then.

5:28 pm: Outta here.

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Always grab a piece of dried mango to tide (is that the correct spelling?) me over. So good, too. Except sometimes I feel like I’m ripping into flesh. How creepy am I?

5:40 pm: Train? You’ve got to be kidding. What am I going to have for dinner?!

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5:45 pm: I’ve got to cook that eggplant. That’ll take a while though. But I’ve got to cook it. Crap. I need gas. It’s too cold to get gas! I don’t have enough good karma built up for my tank to not freeze tonight with only 1/8th of a tank, though.

6:01 pm: This gas pump doesn’t have an auto shut-off! It’s cold out! I’m hungry!

6:02 pm: Oh forget it. My tank is full enough and I can’t feel my face. The church bells weren’t making me any happier. I’m hungry.

6:11 pm: I’ve got it! I’ll put the eggplant in the toaster oven to bake and take a shower while it bakes!

6:15 pm: Crap. Cop. Oh no. Oh no. Oh phew, it’s not. Wait, I’m not even speeding.

6:30 pm: Foodzie! Yay! Okay, eggplant. Oh, I should use up these mushrooms, too. Okay.

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6:42 pm: I don’t think I shower long enough to give that time to bake. And I’m hungry.

6:50 pm: Crap. This still needs another 30+ minutes. I’m starving. I don’t care what, but I’m eating.

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6:52 pm: This is randomly delicious. I knew I left all those burgers in the freezer for a reason.

8:26 pm: Why did I start out writing this post saying “your,” and now I’m saying “I”?

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Filed under breakfast, dinner, lunch, oatmeal, teddie

Reasons…

This post is probably going to be really boring.

Just a warning.

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Why?

Because I’m just going to count the reasons why I love my baby boy.

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1. He loves Kashi Cinnamon Harvest even more than I do. Ever since I started feeding him some, he’s become wicked greedy for his cookies…shaking his head, flopping his lips, giving me that “Aren’t I priceless??” look. I think he’s been disappointed lately because he’s back to plain old Rounders until I open up my next box of Kashi.

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2. He still loves me, even though I look like a monkey on his back. I just want to shake myself in these pictures and scream “sit up!! sit up!!

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3. He’s afraid of the mysterious cat that roams around the fields, but doesn’t care when I train goes by right near us.

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4. He doesn’t really “get” the hot horses that expend energy by just galloping full-speed everywhere. He’d rather sit and watch them. While he eats.

Atta boy, Tedday!

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5. He gives me kisses while I warm his bit up in my hands, and then licks my face. We’re gross together.

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6. He stands politely while my mom takes a cute headshot, even though she takes a cute picture of me blowing my nose while she’s at it.

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7. He watches me and “helps” me clean out his hut. Either that or he’s laughing in his little brain, thinking about how much I’m wrapped around his little hoof.

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8. He’s just about got canter down pat in the outdoor. I’ve got my fingers crossed he has the same mentality in the indoor when we ride in it next!

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9. He’s really good at finding things. Take, for instance, the one miniscule burdock bush that even I cannot find. And just shoves his head right in.

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10. If a depression strike and I can’t afford to feed him, he’ll stay fat on air. And he’s a good forager!

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11. He looks like a fuzzy, wooly teddy bear with his winter woolies on!

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12. He’s nice and low to the ground.

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13. He’s too darn cute for words.

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Filed under teddie