Bake-o-rama

April 1, 2009 at 1:37 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 3 Comments
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This Thursday I am headed to New Orleans to check out Tulane Law School. I’m pretty psyched because a friend from college lives there AND my college roommate is coming down AND one of my sorority sisters is coming!!! YAY! I love that my life has been full of friends the past two weeks. It’s been rough since moving to North Carolina. It’s SO much harder to meet people and make friends when you’re not in school!

Another awesome thing: my friend’s step mom is a great nutritionist who has been on OPRAH! Hopefully I can think of some good questions to ask her!

With my impending trip, I knew I needed to use up some stuff in the fridge that James won’t eat which led to me baking up some tofu, acorn squash and rutabaga.

I was inspired to cook up some rutabaga fries after seeing them on Meghann’s blog. I had never  had rutabaga before and I always love trying new veggies so I was pretty pumped about getting one at the store. Per her instructions, I roasted it at 415* but it took a lot longer then 20 minutes! I guess I cut them thicker?? They were still delish when I took them out of the oven after about 35 minutes.

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I also roasted an acorn squash at the same temp for about 30 minutes. All I did was cut it up and put some olive oil on the part that would be  touching the baking sheet. I love acorn squash. It has just enough sweetness.  I usually just cut it in half but this time I cut it up more so I could easily take it to work for lunch.

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Then I baked part of a block of tofu.  Before baking it put some sesame oil, worstechire sauce, and BBQ sauce on it. Delish!

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I figured out what I did wrong the first time I made tofu. I always read how you should put a book on it and dry it really well. I think I went a little crazy with that and dried it out too much. I like it MUCH better after only barely patting out the excess moisture.

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This was such a fun meal! It’s not very colorful though. Good thing I had big ol salad full of veggies for lunch!

To Do Lists:

After seeing ToDoist.com on Angela’s blog, I decided to give it a shot! My planner is filled with tons of post its with to do lists on them. After playing around with it for a while and email with Angela about how exactly to set it up, I am in love! This is a MUCH better way to have all different to do lists easily accessible. You can easily assign dates and times to your tasks and keep them neatly organized under your various projects (groceries, blog, work, school…endless possibilities!!) 

Right now we’re watching Slumdog Millionaire. It’s pretty disturbing so far. After hearing so much press about it I’m eager to watch!

What has been your favorite movie this year?

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Don’t Worry, I Have a Spare

March 16, 2009 at 1:30 am | Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments
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Basically, I have the best friends ever.

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This completely made my day. Especially after I had a crumby day of feeling sad about running! This totally lifted my spirits!! Ah I love my friends! It sucks that we’re all so far apart 😦

Since this was the first day both of us had off in a while, we decided to celebrate by treating ourselves to a delicious brunch!

James has a few loves in his life. One of them, is biscuits and gravy.

He used this gravy mix:

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And fancied it up by cooking some turkey bacon up in a pan and cutting it up then adding the biscuit mix and water. The result was a delicious gravy that had hints of smoky bacon in it.  He smothered some Grands Buttermilk Biscuits in all of that gravy goodness.  He also had 2 eggs on the side.

Here’s what James has to say:

“It’s really important to cook your meats and make your gravy in that pan so you get all the juices and the bits of it. And break up the bacon before you put the gravy in there. That’s what I would suggest. Because of all that, the gravy was very flavorful. It had a good consistency and I really enjoyed this breakfast!”

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(Like the new placemat and napkin from World Market?? It was on sale!)

For me, I treated myself to the Whole Foods salad bar which I had never tried before since it’s pretty pricy.  But it was worth it for a little treat this morning 🙂

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Okay let’s see if I can remember everything:

  • spinach
  • tabouli
  • pineapple
  • a strawberry
  • sesame tofu
  • cabbage slaw
  • artichoke hearts
  • spinach and artichoke hummus (from our kitchen!)
  • Asian tofu
  • fake chicken salad
  • grilled tofu
  • orzo salad

Yea basically I put a couple bites of everything in there!! I wanted to make the most of my Whole Foods salad bar experience! It was good. The Asian Tofu salad was delish. I have a new tofu obsession after my success the other night!

It was funny when some friends came over last night and they thought all of the food we eat was crazy! Like they had never had hummus and were very confused by what it was and thought the Veggie Flax chips from Trader Joe’s were very odd. It’s interesting how stuff that is so normal to one person can seem so foreign to someone else! But I’m glad that’s how it works because that’s how you learn about new things.

Alrighty we’re watching Fracture (so good! If you like Law & Order, mystery type stuff, rent this movie!) and then going to sleep! Another week starts tomorrow!

What’s something you thought was pretty standard until you showed someone else?

Tofu-in’ and Stir Fryin’ It Up

January 24, 2009 at 12:44 am | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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Stir fry seems to always sound appealing to me. It can be different every time you make it, using seasonal veggies or whatever is on hand. And then there’s the sauce! Yup. I would say stir fry is up there as one of the most versatile dinners.

With starting a new job and James and I both working full time now, I am working on creating meals that are fast to make and easy to clean up without sacrificing nutrition or taste.

Tonight’s stir fry included:

  • Kale
  • Mushrooms
  • Yellow squash
  • Zucchini
  • Onions
  • Garlic

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  • Sesame oil
  • Soy sauce
  • Peanut Sauce

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  • Extra Firm Tofu

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First I sauteed all the veggies except the kale until they were soft and then I took them out of the pan and put them on a plate off to the side.

I poured a mixture of the sauces in a pan and placed the cut up tofu in it. I pretty much just eyeballed everything. Once they were in there, I topped em with a little more of the sauces. The soy sauce is definitely soaked up the easiest so keep the salty factor in mind.

Cook until water is evaporated (a few minutes) and then flip. Put the veggies back in the pan and top with kale. Cover with a lid so kale will wilt. Cook for another few minutes.

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The finished product:

 

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I liked the tofu in this dish a lot. I tried baking tofu a few weeks back and it did not turn out well at all. I had smothered it with BBQ sauce and followed the baking instructions others had and it turned out like cardboard! I was so disappointed since everyone always raves about how great baked tofu is. Maybe I just needed to cut them thicker?? Anyhow, the tofu in this dish was not cardboard-y at all. It was full of flavor and was browned just a bit on each side. Perfection!

Cooking the veggies first and then setting them to the side made it so I only had to use (and then clean) one pan. Adding them back to the pan after flipping the tofu allows them to warm back up.

James and I always split this Bavarian Hefeweizen beer from Trader Joes:

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I usually like wheaty beers but this one had a strange aftertaste. We didn’t even finish it.

It took me a while to figure out what kind of beer I like but after a trip to The Flying Saucer with their extensive beer list, I found my love of all beers wheat (okay not ALL beers as demonstrated above but you get the idea).

I am planning on doing some baking this weekend so stay tuned!!

What is your favorite kind of beer?

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