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Whirlwind few weeks

Published on June 4, 2014, by in Update.

Wow. It’s been a great few weeks. I was in baking mode when we had a birthday at work and I made a peach pie with a new crust recipe that involved vodka. The vodka evaporates out, leaving the crust nice and flaky. It’s definitely a keeper of a recipe. I also made a giant cookie cake. Over Memorial Day weekend, Brian and I traveled to Florida for his family’s annual reunion. We had a great time with his family and it was very well-organized.   While we were there we also hit up a giant flea market. I bought my brother an unopened pack of baseball cards from 1990 and we saw this guy doing karaoke. I was back in Chicago for one day, which Brian and I used to watch the new movie Fed Up. The movie about how we’ve been dieting all wrong for the last 30

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Collard green wraps: Take 2

Published on May 15, 2014, by in Recipes.

Last weekend I bought a bunch of collard greens with the grand plan to make more collard green wraps. I was doing some food prep last night when I ran across them in the fridge. I didn’t have all the ingredients on hand to make the Thai peanut wraps. I also didn’t have the energy to simmer and cool the greens to make the wraps more pliable. I halfheartedly chopped up some vegetables and made a new creation. I was hesitant that they would be any good. I was afraid that uncooked leaf would be bitter and that the combination that I used wouldn’t taste all that good. I was pleasantly surprised that I was wrong! Ingredients: 2 inch piece of cucumber, cored and diced 3 mushrooms, sliced thin 5 baby carrots, sliced thin 2-3 ounces of shredded chicken 1 tablespoon sunflower seeds 1 tablespoon Annie’s light Goddess dressing hummus(I

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Vitamix lemon sorbet

Published on May 9, 2014, by in Recipes.

I had completely forgotten that I had made this until having a conversation about my Vitamix with a friend the other day. So, I decided I would blog it. This past winter, Brian and I were sitting on the couch having a tv/movie marathon because he wasn’t feeling well. It was also double-digit negative temperatures out. Brian was starting to get a sore throat, turned me and said, “Some lemon sorbet would feel really good on my throat.” A quick google search later turned up several Vitamix lemon sorbet recipes. Fortunately, we had all the ingredients on hand(you probably do, too), because I was definitely not going out in a polar vortex to get sorbet. Ingredients: 2 lemons, peeled 1/3 cup sugar 2-3 cups of ice Place all ingredients in blender, turn on Vitamix to “frozen desserts” setting, tamper down as necessary and let your Vitamix work its magic! This

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The great salad toss up

Published on May 8, 2014, by in Recipes, Update.

I’ve needed some new inspiration when it comes to salads. How to you keep eating salads interesting? Mix them up! I was traveling a few month’s ago and stopped at CIBO Express at O’Hare. I love stopping there as they always have a ton of healthy options. There, I got an insanely delicious salad. It was mixed greens topped with roasted sweet potato, blue cheese, pecans, dried cranberries, and turkey with a champagne vinaigrette. It was so flavorful, filling and comforting because it tasted like Thanksgiving. This led me to think about how I could build more creative and filling salads rather just than vegetables or my “go to” taco salad. Here are two that I’ve made lately: I had a sweet potato with cinnamon. Then I had a salad of spinach, tri color peppers, onion, tomato, mushrooms, carrot shreds, sunflower seeds and a combination of blue and cheddar cheese.

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The hardest season

Published on May 7, 2014, by in Update.

Hello. I usually don’t get very personal on my blog, but today, I am. I am sitting behind my computer with my pants a little tight from all the amazing food I have been eating lately. I completed the 21 Day Fix and had amazing results. I absolutely love the program and can’t stop raving about it to all of my friends. So, what happened? Well, I didn’t completely undo my progress, but I am definitely feeling bloated from the food I have been consuming. This is the hardest season for me. It’s my husband’s birthday, then my birthday, which leads directly into patio weather. And since I live in Chicago, the few warm months must be taken advantage of. I am actually healthiest in the winter. I will go to the gym more days than not, because I don’t want to be outside. Since it the hardest season for

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Native Food Cafe’s Mad Cowboy Bowl Remake

Published on April 27, 2014, by in Recipes.

Last winter, Brian and I fell in love with the Mad Cowboy Bowl at Native Food’s Cafe. We were incredibly sad when they came off the menu in late February. So, I started making them at home. They are simple and full of flavor. Start by roasting a lot of vegetables. Their bowl included cauliflower, onion, broccoli, zucchini, summer squash, corn, sweet potato, carrots and a half of a white potato. I did all the veggies, except sweet potato and substituted fingerlings, because it was what I had on hand. Toss in a little olive oil, salt and pepper and roast at 375 for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring twice. They should be fork tender when you pull them out. At this time, you will also be baking your tofu. I used one block of extra firm tofu(drained) cut into 6 pieces and seasoned with a southwest seasoning. Turn the

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Baba Ghanoush

Published on April 24, 2014, by in Recipes.

    So. I was lied to. I found a recipe for baba ghanoush called 3 Minute Baba Ghanoush. It took way more than 3 minutes. It was also delicious. Ingredients: 1 roasted eggplant(see below) juice of 1 lemon 1/4 cup tahini 2 cloves garlic 1 teaspoon salt 2 tablespoons EVOO fresh ground pepper, to taste So… to get a roasted eggplant, take a small(1-1.5 pounds) eggplant, prick it with a fork a few times, and bake it for 30-40 minutes at 400F. Pre and post-roasted eggplant: Let the eggplant cool, slice long ways and scoop out the innards. This is the part that definitely took longer than 3 minutes. Place the inner scoopings of eggplant and remainder of ingredients in a powerful blender(I have a Vitamix). Start on low and gradually increase speed. Blend on high for about 30 seconds until your baba is incredibly smooth and creamy. Pour

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Zucchini bites

Published on April 23, 2014, by in Recipes.

I saw a recipe on cauliflower tots, which let me to a post on zucchini tots, which led me to changing the recipe and making these wonderful zucchini bites. I started out by making them closer to the original recipe, using a mini muffin tin. While they tasted delicious, they were a disaster to get out of the pan. So, I decided to make two more batches, bake them flattened like pancakes on parchment paper and they were perfect! Ingredients: 1 small zucchini, grated 1 large egg 1 thin slice of onion, finely chopped 1/4 cup grated Kerrygold Dubliner cheese(or flavorful cheese) salt-free Italian seasoning to taste salt and pepper to taste Preheat oven to 400F. Grate zucchini onto a clean dishtowel. NOT a terry cloth dishtowel, or you will end up with fuzzy zucchini bites. Wring all the excess water out of the zucchini. In a medium bowl, combine

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Celebrate good times

Published on April 13, 2014, by in Update.

This week was a week of non-stop celebration. It was Brian’s birthday week. Woo hoo. We went out for dinner and drinks with some friends last night and a local and delicious restaurant called El Maya. His real birthday was on Thursday, though. I oped to make dinner for us as I knew we would be going out to eat later in the week. I made beef filet, fingerling potatoes and green beans. Then we went for a walk to enjoy the gorgeous weather and grab a birthday treat of Jeni’s ice cream. Jeni’s is one of my favorite ice cream places. They only use premium ingredients and make amazing flavor combinations. We split 3 half scoops. The flavors we chose was a chocolate mole that had an great late hit of spice, banana french toast, and goat cheese with cherries. All amazing. I spent all of my Friday night

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Progress

Published on April 7, 2014, by in Recipes, Update.

I never know what to title these update posts. After being out-of-town last weekend, I felt like I needed to have a very productive weekend this past weekend. And productive, it was! The fridge is packed to the brim. Then I realized that I have a girls dinner on Wednesday, Brian’s birthday Thursday and Brian’s birthday dinner with friends on Saturday! Well, I guess more meals will be going into the freezer! Oh, well. I spent most of Saturday morning at the grocery store and prepping food. I made rama chicken bowls(brown rice, potato, broccoli and chicken with a peanut sauce), fajita bowls, and prepped fruits and veggies for the week. I got a steal on some chicken breasts, so I bought in bulk, individually packaged and froze most of them. I love a good deal. Mangos were $0.49/each, so I bought a few, sliced and froze in an even

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