Monday, April 29, 2013

Sunday Snapshot

Sunday involved sleeping in, eating big bowls of veggies and doing a lot of reading/studying.


Brunch:

Tofu scramble over spinach, covered in cashew "cream" sauce and avocado.


Cashew "Cream" Sauce

1 cup cashews, soaked overnight,
2 limes, squeezed
salt and pepper
sriracha to taste
splash of apple cider vinegar
BLEND


Late Lunch:

Cold spaghetti over spinach, topped with almonds, artichokes and olives.  Goddess dressing over that.


Dinner:

Tofu scramble and cashew "cream" sauce.  Easy.  Done.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Saturday Studying and Simmering

I'm not usually good about blogging on the weekends, but I have been at my computer studying, so the urge to blog was strong.  I have also been cooking quite a bit.

The morning brought the urge to make up some tofu scramble for the week.  This is the same low-carb recipe that I have been doing a lot, but I keep tweeking the recipe just a little bit.  Today, I added chopped eggplant and a whole lot of savoy cabbage to the mix, and I subbed steamed brussels sprouts for the green beans.  I like the green beans, but they're a little awkward when eating the scramble.  I think the more compact sprouts will go over well.  The key to tofu scramble is to not be afraid of adding spices.





Since I already had the cabbage out, I figured I'd get a good brunch in with avocado and tofu scramble stuffed cabbage leaves.  These were really delicious, and it made a meal that kept me full most of the day.




I spent the afternoon in our "den" studying.  This room is pretty horrible, but we're planning some housing remodel when I get finished with my tests.  This room used to be the garage, but it was enclosed before we bought our house.  We'd like to turn it into a real dining room, but it's currently being used as a sitting/studying room.  Josh and I are often in the orange chairs reading Reddit on our tablets.  It does make a good study room.



After practicing 3 of the vinyettes, I rewarded myself with some coconut ice cream before I moved on to flash cards.  I spent the next several hours sorting through my cards, which was fueled by some skinny popcorn from my Vegan Cuts box.  This snack was really good too.



At around 8:30 I was done studying, and I felt like making a nice dinner for Josh and I.  I made up a whiskey/seltzer/lime, put on some Mad Men, and got to cooking.  He had actual spaghetti and meat balls, salad and bread, while I made up some sauteed eggplant cooked down in tomato sauce over raw zucchini "pasta" and topped with artichokes and olives.  I tried the vegan parmigiana from my cuts box, but it was pretty mild, and I couldn't really taste it.






My only regret for this dish was that I ran out of tomato sauce and didn't have anything on hand to make more, so our dishes were a little dry.  It was still really flavor-ful and yummy, though.

Do you spend a lot of time cooking on the weekend?  Ever sub zucchini for pasta?

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Friday Happenings

It's strawberry season in Little Rock.  That means that for the next few months, I will be eating at Trios and Izzy's pretty much every day.

I probably won't be partaking in as many strawberries as in years past, since they are mostly sugar.  They're still really good, though.

I just grabbed a few snacks this morning for breakfast.  Almonds + pumpkin seeds and olives... it's a pretty good breakfast.



At 12:30, we headed to Izzy's for strawberries, and it was PAAACKED.  I have never seen a wait there.  We settled in and ordered.  During strawberry season, they have a seasonal spinach salad that is really good.  I sub avocado for the goat cheese, and today I ate the poppy seed dressing (it's mostly sugar).  I guess I was feeling bad, because I had the wheat rolls too.  They're good, but I felt pretty crappy the rest of the day.



The strawberries were pretty amazing.  All of my coworkers got the strawberry shortcake for dessert, but it's very non-vegan.  I keep bugging the staff to add more vegan items, since I'm there all the time.  I also picked up a bag of the jasmine pearl tea they have.  If you want good loose leaf tea, Izzy's is the place to get it.

I headed to Kroger after lunch and stocked up on a ton of groceries for the next week and a half or so.  I used to complain about not being able to leave Kroger for under 100 bucks, but now it's more like 200.  I try to stretch the groceries and only go every week and a half.  I think the bulk of our expense is all of the fresh produce we buy.  I'm still of the opinion that you should spend good money on quality food.  I'd rather spend my money on that than medicine later.

Tonight was STRAWBERRY CRAFT NIGHT!  The Bernice Garden is having a Strawberry Festival the weekend of Mothers' Day, so my friend Erin invited everyone over to help make strawberry themed crafts.  I gathered a bunch of supplies and came over to make hair accessories.  I have been wanting to make more since I realized how expensive they are on etsy.  I may have gone overboard when shopping for pieces, though.  Oh well.




There are always great snacks at craft night, and I had my fill of bean dip, guac and almond crackers.  I guess I forgot to take a picture of it.

When I got home, I wasn't really hungry after all the snacks, so I had a few whiskey's + seltzer water + lime. This was gooood.  I spent the rest of the night studying flash cards and watching Mad Men.  I could possibly have an addiction to that show.

I have to study all weekend, but I plan on getting a little cooking done too.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Vegan Cuts Box saves this Emotional Day

As an emotional eater, whenever something happens out of the ordinary to get me stirred up, I usually revert to old eating habits for comfort. This means carbs and alcohol.  That kind of happened today.  

I ran out of hemp milk and was pretty hungry, so for breakfast I served up a double helping of tofu scramble.  This wasn't such a great idea.  That much food (and spicy food for that matter) as the first thing into my system in the morning is never a good idea.  I was feeling pretty crappy for a couple hours.


At around 10 or 11, I ate my almonds.  For some reason, we all got sidetracked and realized at about 12:30 that it was time to eat lunch.  Since I had a doctor's appointment, I just went ahead and went to whole foods.  Man, their salad bar is the best.  I love their tofu.




I was SO excited that they had brussels sprouts on the hot food bar.  They are one of my absolute favorite foods.  I spent a little time reading Game of Thrones (book 2), then I headed to my doctor.  I am not really going to get into it that much, but suffice it to say that an issue I have been having is worse that I had thought, and it looks like I'm slated for some MINOR surgery next week.  Since I'm a big baby, this sent me into a bit of a spiral for the rest of the day.  I was emotional, so I just went home.  Luckily, my vegan cuts box had just arrived.  I took this as a good time to break my diet.

Here's what's inside.  I will try to write something up when I eat each of these.













I have really been wanting to try this Beyond Meat.  I saw it at Whole Foods the other day, and I almost picked some up.  I have a weird feeling about meat like products.  I'm not even a huge fan of seitan because of the texture.  I will try it though, eventually.  

Last weekend we picked up some plastic chairs for the garden, so I figured this was the perfect opportunity to take a snack and head out there to read and calm down a little.




After Josh got home, we sat in the den and read for quite awhile.  At around 8:30 we decided to venture out for food and some cheering up, and we found ourselves at American Pie in North Little Rock.  Apparently, it was trivia night, so the place was packed.  I couldn't decided what I wanted, but eventually I settled on some beer and a salad.  This really didn't go over too well though, and I just ended up picking the walnuts and olives out and eating them and only drinking half my beer.



Our final stop for the night was Kroger for some ice cream.  We picked up these treats, and they were SOOO good.  Definitely a good end to the night.  I didn't count carbs or calories today, but it was a long day, and I'm feeling better today.


Just to re-iterate, everything health wise is fine.  I will be MIA for a few days next week, but maybe I'll have something to blog about as a vegan in the hospital.  I'm not really looking forward to it, though.  Anyway, no matter all the diet breaking, I'm still down another pound, so things are moving in the right direction.  I need to focus and keep going.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Stir Fry Eggplant over Zucchini Noodles

I love eggplant.  It's also one of Josh's favorite meat substitute, so we eat it often.  However, I realized last night, not often enough.  So often, I cut it and salt it and press it, so I feel like there is a lot of prep work involved.  I don't think that is a necessity every time you make it, though.  I'll get to that more in a minute.

Here's the daily wrap up!

For breakfast, I had the usual protein shake.  I find that not having a ton of solid food in the morning is making me feel really good.


At 10, I had some tofu scramble.  I really like this as a snack.  I made this batch with savoy cabbage in it, and man is it good!  I think I will be doing that more often.


It's almost strawberry season in Little Rock, and that means that you will see me eat at Trios and Izzy's pretty much every day.  My boss LOVES strawberry desserts, and those two places are known for them.  Today we ventured east and went to Trios.  This is not my favorite place.  There are a lot of nice dishes, if you eat meat and cheese, but the vegan options are pretty much non-existent.  It was especially hard for me today, since I'm trying to eat low carb.  I settled on black bean gazpacho and a side salad.


It was really good, even if it did up my carb count for the day.  For a snack I brought goddess dressing and veggies.  I have a love/hate relationship with snap peas.  Sometimes I think they're wonderful;  sometimes I think they're gross.  Gross was today.  Ick.  I ate the olives.


I headed to my sister's house to go on a walk with her and her dog.  We had a nice time, and when I headed home, I kept thinking about eggplant.  I had seen Zucchini "Noodles" and peanut sauce on the Fat Free Vegan blog, so I had been craving such a dish.  I cut up some eggplant and sauteed it in oil and tamari until it got soft, then I piled it on top of zucchini noodles and peanut sauce.  The sauce is just earth balance crunchy peanut butter, tamari, rice wine vinegar and olive oil.  This was SO good.  I could have EASILY eaten another bowl full!








As you may have noticed, I put sriracha on EVERYTHING.  I love it.  I topped the salad with sesame seeds and a little sea salt.

I am also pretty excited about my little garden seedlings.  I got kind of a late start on seeds this year, but it's ok, because it's still pretty cold in Little Rock.


Those are hot peppers of several varieties, eggplant and flowers.  We'll see how it goes.  I love planting things, but I usually end up killing them.  Only time will tell!

Total Calorie Count for Day: 1270

Total Carb Count:  76