July 27, 2010 § 23 Comments
A best friend is someone who you know inside out and upside down.
A best friend is someone who knows you inside out and upside down.
A best friend is someone who doesn’t judge you.
A best friend is someone who you know for sure was your sister/brother in your past life.
A best friend is someone who you may not always hang out with, but know that she/he is always there when you need her/him.
A best friend is someone who points out your mistakes and flaws in the kindest, nonjudgamental ways.
A best friend is someone who you can trust your life with.
A best friend is someone who you can talk with for hours and hours on little and big things.
A best friend is someone who you share all your dreams with.
A best friend is someone who knows when to listen and when to talk.
A best friend is the first person who you tell or call if you’ve had a bad day, good news, or just because.
A best friend is someone who you can sit beside in silence and have the greatest conversation ever.
A best friend is someone who can almost always read your thoughts, and you hers/his.
A best friend is someone who you’d like to see and hug everyday.
A best friend is someone who’s left footprints in your heart.
Yesterday while Dmitri was on Kramster (a website where kids can ask any questions, ranging from math problems to proofreading an essay, and others answer), he came across a kid asking, “What is the definition of a best friend?” Whether the kid was fooling around or he really doesn’t know, I have no idea. How sad would it be to not know what a best friend is? I met my best friend when I was 10, and we’re still as tight as ever even if we’re 400 miles apart. Meeting my best friend was the best thing that happened to me.
+ Feel free to add to the list!
Quickie post of today’s eats:
Oats with almond milk and egg whites beat in. Oh my , egg whites made everything sooo voluminous! It was almost twice the volume of yesterday’s oats!
- 1/3 cup oats
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 egg white
- half a peach, chopped
- 2 dried apricots, chopped
The toppings today were the other half of the peach, passion mango butter, and a blob of sunflower seed butter.
Okay, seriously, why did I wait so long to try chopped dried apricots in oats? I think Jess had already raved about them countless times. Now I truly know how amazing they are in hot oatmeal!
I enjoyed every last bite of it with some tea…
…which came with a really nice quote!
You’ll be seeing alot of mish-mash of foods because I’m trying to clean out the fridge before I leave for Taiwan tomorrow!
Random salad with spinach and arugula, mashed sweet potato with black beans, leftover veggies from yesterday, roasted zucchini and roasted eggplants, and humnut dressing.
When I came home today, there was total power outage throughout the entire apartment community! Bummer 😦 I had dinner planned and marinating in the fridge, but no oven or stove! We decided to pull the emergency plan: Souplantation! It was good that we had a coupon too, so the buffet for two came down to $15 total.
They were supposed to get the power fixed by 8pm, but didn’t come on till about half an hour ago! We were living in the dark for an hour or so. Well, with a flashlight. We proceeded to playing this cute little game in the dark (with flashlight):
Halfway through, the light came on.
Check out Dmitri’s hands…
Okay. It’s way past my bedtime! Need to hit the sack soon! Nighty night!
July 26, 2010 § 24 Comments
Today was an oatmeal kind of day.
Yes it is the middle of the summer, and yes it was after I was on the elliptical for 40 minutes and did about 15 min of light yoga afterwards–I was sweaty. But after that cinnamon roll yesterday, I couldn’t help craving for something warm, toasty, and, well, cinnamony.
When I first got introduced to oatmeal, my toppings were just the same old: cinnamon, brown sugar, raisins, and occasionally some chopped walnuts. I experimented with it more as my relationship with oatmeal grew stronger, occasionally adding in chopped apples, chopped pears, stirring in bananas, or throwing in some mixed nuts in the end. And then I met the foodie blogworld, where everyone made their oatmeals in the morning look like desserts.
But sometimes, the good old can be just as good and somewhat nostalgic.
My plain-Jane oatmeal:
- 1/2 cup oats
- 1/2 almond milk
- 1/2 water
- 1/2 banana (okay, maybe I cheated a little here)
- dash of salt
- cinnamon sugar
- chopped walnuts
Delicious, and hit. the. spot.
Okay, I may have cheated more than once. I couldn’t resist but throw in a handful of blueberries and a blob of sunflower seed butter after I’ve devoured half. 😛
Today while I ellipticalled, I cracked open my new-found book: The Yoga Body Diet.
One of the things mentioned in the introductory chapter that really caught my attention was the principle that we should eat 3 square meals a day without snacking. Their belief is that by not snacking between meals, we allow our digestive systems to properly digest everything and clear out the digestive tracts before our next meal. When we snack, we clog up the digestive tract with undigested food while the stomach has to get to work on the incoming food.
Which made sense, but what about the eating every 2-3 hours to help stabilize your blood sugar principle? Personally, I find that if I go too long without eating, I’d be starving by the next meal and just scarf down everything in sight. Not very healthy and friendly to the waist-line either.
So what’s the dealio? I’d have to find out as I continue on reading. The book includes some sample meal plans and types of food to eat according to the three main body types: vata, pitta, and kapha. In Ayurveda (which literally translates to The Science of Life from Sanskrit), each one of us is born with all three of these doshas, or body types. However, we all have one predominant dosha. The doshas are based on four elements: fire, air, water, and earth. Vata types are made of air, while pitta types are made up of fire and water, and kapha types are made up of water and earth.
Another thing that I picked up from what I’ve read so far today is that we should always, always eat in a stress-free environment. Heart of the fight-or-flight response? Yep, that’s our sympathetic nervous triggers. Back in the days when humans are not snobby predators on top of the food chain, our stress responses were useful when we were running for our lives away from sabertooth tigers and what nots. When this particular switch is flipped on, our body starts storing fat as energy reserve, ’cause when you’re running for your lives, you don’t have time to down an energy bar or fuel up with some coconut water. You run like heck, and who knows when your next meal is?
Nowadays, there are so many stress triggers around us, from blaring TV’s to honking horns, 8+ hrs workdays to endless errands–we live in a stressful environment folks. And then our body would mistake that for a lion chasing us down in Africa and start storing fat.
So I know all of us bloggies like to hug our laptops while we sip our coffees and munch on breakfast in the morning. But reading and typing while eating in itself is causing stress, believe it or not. There are distractions, and your brain is thinking and thinking. Food won’t be digested properly, and you’re less likely to savor each bite of food. You also tend to eat more if you distracted while you’re eating.
This morning, I ate alone. In silence. No laptops opened, no books, nothing. It was me, my oatmeal, and some water. It was almost like having a one-to-one conversation with my oatmeal. Hi how are you? Fine, just dandy, and you? Oh I’m feeling glorious this morning. You’re delicious you know that? yes I know, and please give your full attention on me. I will.
What usually is a 5-8 minute breakfast for me lingered for more than 15 minutes today. I could feel my tummy filling up with each bite. I could feel when it was not hungry, and it was just below the line of being full. Fantastic, fantastic date with my oatmeal.
Unfortunately, my dinner wasn’t as distraction-free. Dmitri was watching Supersize Me on his laptop while we were eating.
Have you watched the documentary before? I watched it back in high school during our Health class. That was when I stopped eating at McDonald’s.
I tried making some sort of curry but failed miserably. No curry taste at all! I shouldn’t have added the half can of tomatoes in since it just overpowered everything.
I sauteed some onions in a pan with curry powder and a little tumeric till soft, then added in the canned tomatoes, cauliflowers, and cabbage. I covered the pan to let the whole thing simmer and steam a little. In another pan sprayed with cooking oil, I sauteed cubed tofu with curry powder till crispy, then threw the tofu into the veggie mix and combined everything.
Nutritional yeast saved it…sort of.
I almost poured some Almond milk into the picture to make it creamy. Fortunately I knew better, especially when the almond milk is vanilla-flavored. Vanilla-tomato-curry stir fry? I don’t think so.
Two more days till home-free! :D:D:D
+ Anyone have good curry recipes out there?
July 21, 2010 § 17 Comments
Once upon a time there was a Frog who lived in a shallow well. The shallow well is the only place he has ever come into contact with, as well as a puddle of murky waters. Whenever he looks up through the opening of the well above, he would exclaim excitedly: “Wow! The world is so big!” Little did the Frog know the real world that lies outside of his well.
One day, the Frog met a Turtle, who came from the East Sea, at the edge of his well. The Frog boasted of his perfect little biding: “I am so happy! When I go out, I can jump about along the edges of the well. When I come home, I can rest in the holes inside the well. I have the water which comes up to my armpits, and the mud to play with. When I look at the small worms, crabs, and tadpoles, I realize none of them can compare to me. I am the lord of this well, and I am very, very pleased!”
The Frog then said to the Turtle:”Dear sir, why don’t you come visit me more often to look around my place?”
The Turtle shook his head, “Even a distance of a thousand miles cannot give you an idea of the sea’s width; even a height of a thousand meters cannot give you an idea of its depth. In the time of the great floods, the waters in the sea did not increase. During the terrible droughts, the waters in the sea did not decrease. The sea does not change along with the passage of time and its level does not rise or fall according to the amount of rain that falls. The greatest happiness is to live in the Sea.”
After hearing the story, the Frog of the Shallow Well was shocked and became suddenly aware of his insignificance.
[A Chinese Fable. Source: http://allaboutfrogs.org/stories/well.html%5D
This is a story that we all learn as children of Chinese heritage. It teaches us to not be arrogant, to be open-minded, and be aware that there are so many other things in the world around us besides just our own selves.
Case # 1: The Battle of the Risotto
Yesterday Dmitri and I a serious conversation about risottos. He claims that all risottos have ground beef in them. Uhhh…are you kidding me? Most risotto recipes I see do not even have meat in them! He wouldn’t believe me. He told me that they made risotto in a class in middle school once, and that had ground beef in it. He loved it so much that he took the recipe to his mom, and his mom now makes it very often. He grew up believing all risottos are made with ground beef.
Well, obviously I know more about food than he does. I told him that the definition of risotto is arborio rice cooked in broth, sometimes with milk or cream, and flavored with cheese. He still wouldn’t believe me, so I went onto Allrecipes.com and looked up the Top 20 Risotto Recipes. Only a handful of them had some sort of meat, and none with ground beef.
Ahh…victory is sweet :mrgreen:. I have officially opened his eyes to a bigger world of risotto.
Case # 2: Tribute to Oatmeal
Today Dmitri was making oatmeal, and said he hated it. I sort of flinched and my heart skipped a beat when I heard that. What?! How can someone hate oatmeal?!?!?! The glorious, versatile, oatmeal? He said it was dry and tasteless. Clearly, he hasn’t seen the power of oatmeal. I asked him what he cooked his oatmeal in, and whether he added anything. Water, and nothing. No wonder.
I took his bowl of cooked oats from him. I will perform magic to this oatmeal, I told him. No one, no one, can say that they hate oatmeal in front of me. I won’t let that happen.
A mere five minutes later, with a sprinkle of my pixie dust (maple syrup, microwaved chopped apple, cinnamon, milk, a dash of salt, flaxseed, a glob of nutella), I transformed his bowl of boring oats to something scrumptiolicious.
He couldn’t stop saying how good that oats were. Another sweet victory :cool:.
Case # 3: This blog & the blog community
Approximately 6 months ago, I discovered the foodie blog community. I have enjoyed baking as a hobby years already, but never have I really strayed from the recipes. I wasn’t daring or creative, and I pretty much followed every recipe to the tee. I would occasionally have some rather more creative breakfast ideas, but that was it.
This blog community has really opened my eyes to the world of foodies out there. Ever since starting to read these food blogs, I have learned so much more about food, and have become more daring when it comes to experimenting with food. Reading these blogs motivated to start my own as I discover my own cooking style and also as an outlet to my thoughts and my passion about yoga. I have met wonderful people through this community, everyone equally as inspiring, as creative, smart, beautiful as the other. I’ve never been much of a writer, but blogging almost every day really helped me discover my own writing style and voice. If I have not found this blog community, I wouldn’t have made these delicious meals.
But today, I didn’t play chef! The Kitchen God was the boyfriend today ;).
With vegan chorizo, naturally. 😀
I’m not gonna lie, but I did play in the kitchen a little bit. Just to make some roasted cauliflowers! Boys need to learn that veggies are a must at every single meal. Well, breakfast doesn’t count.I even told him to add more peas than the measly 1/2 cup as written on the recipe. Seriously 1/2 cup? I’d rather have more peas than rice!
I hope I didn’t bore you all with my ramblings in this post. But I’ve been thinking lots and I just want to share! Besides, sharing is caring right? 🙂
+ What is something you have recently discovered and opened your mind to?
July 7, 2010 § 13 Comments
I’m experiencing one of those days when I just have no inspiration whatsoever for my blog, which I’m sure you’ve all had encountered at least once during your bloghood. BUT! Yes, there’s always a BUT! I do have alot of inspirational eats to share! If you guys don’t mind, it’s gonna be a short post with plenty of pictures and some captions 😀
I’ve noticed that my posts have been lacking in the dinner and other eats department…
How about some big-mouth burger?
Piled high with a Gardenburger Sundried Tomato Basil veggie burger, sauteed onions and mushrooms, sliced cucumbers, tomatoes, and lots of arugula. All between a whole-wheat sandwich thin! You gotta agree with me that the Sandwich thins are by far the best invention in the foodie world! While I love sandwiches and burgers, I don’t like having too much dough in the pile.
One thing I know for sure is that my version of the big-mouth burger is a whole lot better and healthier than this:
Speaking of healthified, here’s a healthified creamed spinach!
This simple recipe came from The Vegetarian 5-Ingredient Gourmet, which merely called for some silken tofu, spinach, a teensy butter, salt & pepper. I added some nutritional yeast for some cheesy flava!
What else can you play around with roasted sweet potato moons? In a sandwich of course!
Again, on a sandwich thin with brie cheese, sliced apples, and leftover roasted sweet potato. Oh man, this made a gourmet lunch! I heated this thing up for 30 secs in the microwave at work today so that the cheese was slightly melty and the apple slices were warm. Sooooo good! I was so sad when I finished my sandwich, even though I ate as slow as possible to savor it 😦
I’ve been wanting to make these oatmeal pancakes made with egg whites for some time now. I finally got the courage to spend a little extra money on grocery this week to buy a carton of egg whites (I hate wasting egg yolks!).
I’d have to admit, I was a little skeptical about the recipe at first. Oatmeal + egg whites + baking powder = pancakes???? Well, I got totally kicked in the butt by this recipe when my perfect pancakes were born.
Made myself a Chocolate PB2 + J pancake sandwich! The pancakes were sooo chewy! Love the texture too! 🙂
My pancake mix:
- 1/2 cup oatmeal
- 1/2 cup egg whites
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- dash of sweetener
- vanilla extract
Yum yum yummidy yumyumyum!
Dinner today was quick and easy–literally from kitchen to table in 15 minutes or less! All thanks to this yummy find from Trader Joe’s.
All I did was pop it into the microwave for 4.5 minutes, and the spicy aroma was filling my kitchen! I served this along with TJ’s Whole Wheat Couscous, which was conveniently cooked in the microwave as well!
For the couscous:
- 1 cup couscous
- 1/2 cup veggie broth
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1 tbsp curry powder
Microwaved for 3 minutes, fluffed it up, then added some more apple juice, curry powder, and about a tablespoon of honey. I also threw in half a chopped tomato. I almost added some red chili powder, but thank goodness I didn’t!
Because the Channa Marsala was spicy already!
Oh boy oh boy! This was surprisingly DELICIOUS! The couscous that I made up on a whim paired perfectly with the spicy channa marsala (also had a hint of sweetness). I served the couscous and channa marsala on top of a bed of romaine lettuce. Initially, it was just for aesthetic appeal, but my first bite of the meal told me otherwise.
The cool, crispy, and refreshing lettuce contrasted perfectly with the hot ‘n’ spicy channa marsala! With every bite I had a cooling crunch, a grainy delight, and an excitingly hot flavor!
Definitely repeating this dinner!
Now I’m off to bake 3 batches of cookies for tomorrow’s Biology Department Potluck. 😀
+ What’s your favorite Indian dish?
June 26, 2010 § 13 Comments
When I woke up this morning, I had a craving that I have every other morning…chocolate.
Usually I can get by that craving by making myself a giant bowl of oatmeal, a sweet smoothie, or simply some PB&J. I went for the oatmeal route today and made some chocolatey oats today that consisted of cocoa powder, chocolate whey protein powder, and a large scoop of ChocoDreams.
I contemplated on snapping a picture of my breakfast. On second thought, my breakfast looked kind of gross to put up here.
I inhaled my breakfast in no time. But guess what, that chocolate craving was still there.
My next resort?
When life needs chocolate, you give it chocolate. 🙂
No, I haven’t finished this so delicious thing since then. Shame on me.
My tummy happily went dormant again after a few scoops of peanut butter chocolate goodness and a few more licks of ChocoDreams.
Speaking of chocolate, I need to share a couple of my new findings when I visited a local gluten-free shop last night:
Cutest packaging ever.
On the Almonds & Sea Salt in Dark Chocolate package:
Dark semisweet chocolate, whole dry roasted almonds and sea salt.
At first bite, crunchy almonds release their flavor in a swirl with chocolate. The sea salt crystals continually reset your sweet taste buds and make a tantalizing taste combination that keeps you wanting more.
No joke! I had a good three squares of it right after I bought it last night.
I haven’t tried the Ginger Crystallized in Dark Chocolate, but here’s what it says:
Crystallized Australian ginger in rich Belgian dark chocolate crafted from a blend of Caribbean and African cocoa beans.
Upon eating, tangy dark chocolate gives way to soft, moist, sugar-coated chunks of hot-spicy ginger. The sweet and spicy transitions are delightfully stimulating.
Sounds tantalizing and mouth-watering to me!
I have no intentions of going to the gym, or running outside, or doing yoga, or doing any exercise for that matter. My body is calling out for a rest day. I think it caved in yesterday because I pretty much exercised 3 times. Well, four if you count bustling around in the lab all day as exercise.
Morning 5.35 am: 2 hr Ashtanga yoga
Afternoon 4.00 pm: 50 min fast walk to and from Yogurtland! (Lemon-Passion Fruit tart, Chocolate Coconut Truffle, and Mango)
Evening 6.15 pm: 1 hr and 10 min of sand volleyball
We could have gone on playing for up to two hours if it wasn’t for the dangerous sand volleyball court! Two people yesterday got injured at the same spot on the court. One got seriously scraped on the knee when he dove to get the ball. The other got jabbed deeply on her big toe. We tried digging around that area and couldn’t find anything. We proclaimed it the Demon’s point.
I’ve played on that sand court several times, but it’s never happened before! In consideration of everyone else’s safety, we decided to call it quits for the evening and would inform our school’s Facilities and Maintenance staff to check on that area (the court is on our campus).
Needless to say, I was starving by then too. Dmitri and I headed down to Pita Pit to use our buy one get one free coupon!
It’s like Subway, but wrapped in a pita! Also, they have much more vegetarian options (not just to boring Veggie Delite), including Babaganouj, Garden, Falafel, Feta, and Hummus, and more veggies to choose from! It definitely fills me up way better than Subway does!
I was totally pooped when we finally got home at around 9. Dmitri and I set up to watch a movie, but my eyes just felt soooo heavy. At 9:40, I asked Dmitri to tuck me in.
Yes I still need to be tucked in with a bedtime story 😀
‘Twas a glorious 8 hours of sleep!
- BBQ at a professor’s house! With 40+ other guests including profs and students
- Bake (?)
Have a wonderful Saturday everyone!
+ What fun reads have you been doing lately?
+ Do you ever wake up craving chocolate? If so, how do you quell it?