Friday, June 22, 2012

Quinoa Fruit Salad

It seems like once you go public with a goal, the universe makes every attempt to thwart your efforts. Just as I expected, I wasn't anywhere close to weekday veg during my week in Houston. For one, I had no control over the boxed lunch options at my continuing ed conference. Secondly, I ate out a bunch with my parents. This week I'm doing a little better, but I've eaten quite a bit of organic, grass-fed beef we got on sale at Sprouts a few weeks ago. I'm okay with that.

Over the last two weeks I did discover a new vegetarian side dish that I love. The recipe comes from a diabetic cooking magazine my mom has. Unfortunately I took a picture of it with my phone, and now I can't remember or see the name of the source...

Here's what you'll need:

*I substituted agave nectar for the honey because that's what I had in my pantry.
*I chose a Granny Smith apple.
*I just bought mixed nuts from the bulk section instead of walnuts and chopped them in my food processor.
*I omitted celery because I think it's gross.
*I recommend adding a little more Greek yogurt than the recipe calls for to make sure everything is nice and coated. 
*Definitely let it chill in the fridge before eating. It will taste so much better.

 I've now made this twice, once at my parents' house and once at my own house. Initially I thought it could pass as a dessert, but now I'm reconsidering. Maybe if you paired it with some Blue Bell Homemade Vanilla? Jury's still out. But I do think it would make a very refreshing side for a summer picnic or potluck. Yum.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Some Things You Take for Granted

Have you ever tried to help someone create and email a Word document over the phone who does not have the following concepts:

-Windows toolbar (he thinks once you click on a new window the other ones disappear. If he could see my screen right now, he would be in for the shock of his life.)
-saving a file and remembering the location of that file
-figuring out the name of said file
-searching for a file
-how to "Save As" a second time to strategically place the file on the desktop--never could get him through the steps necessary to do that one...unfortunately he has the older version of Word on his computer...
-copying and pasting
-the difference between a program on your computer and an Internet website
-how to attach a file to an email

etc., etc., etc.
lol if it wasn't for my dad...
who honestly has impressive skills for someone born in 1930...

Thankfully we inserted and formatted the majority of the pictures and text while I was with him in person.
And fingers crossed that I don't get a phone call to troubleshoot printer problems...

Friday, June 8, 2012

Vegetarian Recipes

Once upon a time, I decided to institute Meatless Monday in my life. And I was committed to it for quite a while. Sure, I'd skip and have a meal with meat on a Monday here and there (usually due to poor planning), but I'd try to have a makeup veggie meal later in the week when that would happen. I felt like I was doing a great job of decreasing my meat intake. It turned out that once I decided to eat vegetarian on one day of the week that I was more inclined to have meatless meals other days of the week too.

Then I got pregnant and became super lax about my Meatless Monday observance. Then I was the first time mom of a newborn just trying to survive, and well, I scarfed down what I could when I could. Not that everything I ate was bad, but I let a lot of junk food back into my diet.

Anyway, now I'm trying to get back on track. My goal for the summer is to be a "weekday vegetarian" (a term I heard in this TED Talk). I'm giving myself some time to ease into it. This week I've had only 3-4 meals containing meat, and with a little more planning and preparation, I think I can be up to full weekday veg in two weeks. (I would say next week, but I'm going to be at my parents' house...)

Since better meal planning is the key to eating better, I'm also working on a meal planning visual system to use at home. I hope this will help to eliminate the dreaded question of "what do you want for dinner?" When that happens a lot of times we'll just end up picking up fast food.

So, step 1 of developing my meal planning system is gathering recipes that we like. I thought I'd share a few we've tried recently.

Rice, Cheddar & Spinach Pie

We made this for dinner, and hubs and I both really liked it. I really liked the brown rice and egg combo. Kept it from being too eggy. We threw in some mushrooms and garnished with feta cheese. 


Black Bean and Brown Rice Burgers

Super yummy. Would definitely make again. Hubs liked them too, which hasn't been true of other black bean burger recipes we've tried. 


Baked Hummus and Spinach Dip

Such a yummy dip with baby carrots. I added a little extra garlic, curry powder, and turmeric. I also chopped the spinach a little longer than I think the author intended. This would be perfect for St. Patrick's Day bc it is BRIGHT green! 


Oatmeal-Rhubarb Porridge

I made this for brunch this morning, and I thought it was decent. It was my first time to ever try rhubarb (I bought some frozen at Sprouts a couple months ago and wanted to use it)...I kind of liked the tangy kick with the oatmeal.