Posts tagged ‘wedges’

February 17, 2011

Healthy & Dairy Free

Yesterday I woke up feeling refreshed and ready to tackle my sugar addiction! I decided to make a banana bread for breakfast… An extremely healthy banana bread. No eggs, no oil, no sugar, no dairy… and still amazingly delicious. Take that sugar cravings!

I also was trying to stay from my Peanut Butter so I made some fresh Almond Butter to spread on my slice. Why haven’t I made this before today? No salt, no sugar – Just simply perfect.

If you are looking for a guilt free delicious breakfast I highly suggest you make this – It definitely wasn’t lacking any flavor!

Peanut Banana Bread

Ingredients

  • 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
  • 2 Tablespoons Ground Flaxseed
  • 2 Cups Whole Wheat Pastry Flour
  • 1/4 cup Peanut flour
  • 1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
  • 1-1/2 Teaspoons Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Natural Applesauce
  • 1.5 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 4 Medium-Sized, Very Very Ripe Bananas, Mashed (about 2 cups)
  • Add ins – I knew I was going to spread almond butter on top so I didnt add anything but I think walnuts would be perfect

Directions

  • Preheat your oven to 350ºF and grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
  • In a large mixing bowl combine the almond milk and flaxseed and set aside.

  • In a medium-sized bowl, sift together the flours, cinnamon, nutmeg, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • Returning to your mixing bowl, blend in the applesauce, vanilla, and bananas until well mixed. Stir in the dry ingredients by hand, being careful not to over-mix; a few lumps are okay.

  • Gently fold in the nuts, fruit, or any other add-ins, if using.
  • Spread the batter into your prepared loaf pan, and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the top is browned and resilient to the touch.

  • Allow the bread to cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes before removing it to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • I also made one small loaf that took about 22-25 minutes if you choose to make them mini-sized

I plan on eating this for 2 days and then freezing the rest! If you do freeze this make sure you wrap it really tight and stick inside a plastic bag.

Lunch was Spinach, romaine, cucumbers, pepper and carrots with roasted red pepper hummus. This was my first time substituting hummus for salad dressing and it was SO good. If you’ve never tried them together, give it a shot.

I made it to the gym after work and ran intervals for 40 minutes. It was totally random because I did it by the songs on my ipod so for every song I ran/walked at an incline from 4.0 and level 4 incline to 7.5 level 1 incline. I pushed myself to go because it was already Wednesday and I was trying to convince myself to start over next week but the good side of my brain said no, just do it! I sure didn’t regret it 🙂

Dinner was Shrimp, Mushroom & Spinach Risotto – This was my first time making actual risotto since the last one I made was actually cauliflower.

Shrimp, Mushroom & Spinach Risotto – Dairy Free & Vegan if you leave out shrimp

  • 4 ounces dried shitake mushrooms
  • 3/4 pound of shrimp
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2½ cups vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup lemon juice
  • 2 cups chopped spinach
  • 1 t. sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 2 T. olive oil, divided
  • 2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ½ cup finely chopped onions
  • 8 ounces crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 t. dried thyme
  • 1 cup uncooked Arborio rice
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 T. dairy-free soy margarine
  • 1 ½ T. nutritional yeast
  • Black pepper, to taste

Preparation:

1. In a small bowl, combine the boiling water with the shitake mushrooms, and let them soak, uncovered for 30 minutes. Drain the liquid into a medium-sized saucepan and discard the mushrooms. Add the vegetable broth to the sauce pan, bring the mixture to a simmer and cover.

2. In a small bowl, toss the spinach, lemon juice and 1 t. of the salt. Set aside.

3. In a heavy bottomed saucepan over medium heat, heat 1 T. of the olive oil. Add the chopped garlic and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and translucent, about 6-8 minutes. Add the mushrooms and thyme, and cook until the mushrooms are soft, about 4 minutes more. Add the remaining 1 T. of olive oil and the rice, and, stirring constantly, cook until the rice is evenly coated and sounds like crispy rice cereal in the pan, making snapping and popping noises, about 4 minutes. Drop in Shrimp. Add the wine, stirring constantly, until all of the liquid is completely absorbed.

4. Ladle ¾ cup of the simmering broth into the rice and cook, continuing to stir, until most of the liquid is absorbed.Continue to add the broth in ¾-cup increments, allowing the liquid to be absorbed before another addition, until the rice is translucent around the edges but still solid in the middle and the rice is of a creamy consistency, about 20 minutes.

5. Add the spinach and cook for just about 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly, or until the spinach is wilted and bright green. Stir in the dairy-free soy margarine and nutritional yeast. Add salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

This could probably serve 2-3 people. It was filling, “cheesy” and tasted a lot better than brown rice! It even left me satisfied enough to not even crave dessert. Woohoo!

I found out that Thursday is actually my Friday because the family is going to the beach since its going to be 70 degrees out! A beautiful weathered surprise paid day off? Sounds like a perfect way to start the weekend! I’m hoping to go hiking for the day in Virginia – i’ll get a great exercise in and it will keep me away from the malls. Everytime I have a day off I end up spending more money shopping then I would’ve even made! Guess that’s what boredom does to you..

Speaking of shopping and 70 degree weather… That must mean spring is on its way! New season + new trends = Shopping Trip…I will probably wait a couple of weeks to start my spree but here are some things I have my eye on.

Number 1 must have: Cargo Skinny Pants – LOVE these


Number 2: Trench Coat – obviously this is a staple and not a trend but sometimes its fun to get a new spring color


Number 3: Colorful clutch – A girl can never have too many bags


Number 4: Romper – Yes, I like onesies


Number 5: Cognac colored wedges – My favorite waist belt is cognac so I like to keep it in the family


Number 6: Stripes – Call me where’s waldo but I cant get enough striped shirts in my closet. This is actually a 3 in 1 for me. Gray (favorite new color to wear), stripes and a t-shirt dress.

Questions – Do you shop at the beginning of each season for new items? Have you ever made a guilt free bread?

Day 21: Favorite Picture of yourself ALL TIME. Why?

This is one of my favorite pictures of myself because I love the way my hair looks! I am not good at curling my hair but I was proud of myself for the job I did that night 🙂

OH more exciting shopping news – I received my shoes from Shanna!! Love them and they fit PERFECTLY 🙂 Thanks again girl!


February 13, 2011

3 days in 1 post

Hellllo out there. I have so many great things to tell you guys! Let’s start off with food… I have Thurs, Fri & Sat to catch you up on… I’ve had A LOT of awesome Vegan eats. My meals have are so much easier now, which is great because I would’ve quit by now if it was anything like day 1!

Thursday

Breakfast: Banana Berry Protein Smoothie (1 banana, 1 cup almond milk, frozen berries & Amazing Grass chocolate flavor)


Lunch: Whole Wheat Pasta w/ Crushed Tomatoes and grilled Vegetables

Dinner: Homemade Vegan Chili


Dessert: Vegan Peanut  Butter cups – Chocolate + Better n Peanut Butter  + Cinnamon Graham Crackers = LOVE

I have to share this recipe. What kind of friend would I be if I didn’t give you a recipe that included chocolate and peanut butter? Let alone combined…

Vegan Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups adapted from Alicia Silverstone’s Kind Diet

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp Earth Balance butter
  • 1/2 cup Better n Peanut Butter
  • 2/3 cup cinnamon graham crackers crushed + more if desired for topping
  • 2 tbsp Maple Syrup
  • 1/2 cup Vegan Chocolate Chips
  • 3 tbsp Unsweetened Almond Milk

Directions

  • Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  • Stir in the peanut butter, graham cracker crumbs, and maple sugar and mix well.
  • Remove the mixture from the heat. Evenly divide the mixture, approximately 2 tablespoons per cup, among the mold cups.
  • Combine the chocolate and milk in another pan. Stir over medium heat until the chocolate has melted.
  • Spoon the chocolate evenly over the peanut butter mixture.
  • Top with more crushed graham crackers
  • Place in the refrigerator to set for at least 2 hours before serving.

I’m gonna pull a Rachel Ray and say Yumm-O (even though I make fun of her for saying that). Not only are these healthy, low in calories and easy to make but they are SO SO good. I even tricked one of my cousins into thinking it was a high calorie, unhealthy dessert 🙂

Friday

Breakfast: Van’s Whole Wheat Waffles w/ Protein “Cake Batter”

Protein “Cake Batter”

Ingredients

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 2 tbsp unsweetened almond milk
  • 1/2 packet of Vega Vanilla Protein Powder

Directions

  • Blend together

Dessert for breakfast is becoming way too common… But I don’t mind. It’s healthy 🙂

Lunch: Leftover Vegan Chili

Dinner: Vegan Mushroom Pizza & A vegan chocolate chip cookie

The cookie monster must’ve gotten a hold of this before I could grab the camera 🙂 Btw, soy cheese – um, really? Why does every pizza place not offer this as an option? Try it just once, for me! Pleassseee.

Saturday

Breakfast: Whole Wheat Cinnamon Apple Swirl Pancakes w/ Apple Topping (longest name?)

I wanted to make something that my boyfriend and I could eat together so I had to think of something that looked like a man’s meal! He had seconds so I’m pretty positive I succeeded.

Whole Wheat Cinnamon Apple Swirl Pancakes w/ Apple Topping

Ingredients:

Pancake Batter

  • 3/4 cup Whole Wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup Whole Wheat pastry flour
  • 2 tablespoons stevia
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tablespoon Ener-G mixed with 2 tablespoons water

  • Cinnamon-Apple Swirl Batter:
    • 2 tablespoons prepared batter (above)
    • 2 tablespoons natural apple sauce
    • 1 teaspoon cinnamon

    Apple “Syrup” Topping

     

    • 1 chopped granny smith apple
    • 1 tbsp butter
    • 2 tbsp brown sugar
    • 1 tsp cinnamon

    Directions

    • In a large bowl, mix flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon.

    • Add almond (or soy) milk and egg replacer mixture and stir just until flour is moistened. (For thicker pancakes, use only 1 cup milk.) Let the batter rest for 5 minutes while the skillet heats.

    • While the batter is resting, combine all of the “swirl” ingredients, using 2 tablespoons of the prepared batter.
    • Heat a non-stick griddle or skillet (sprayed lightly with non-stick spray) over medium heat until a drop of water sizzles. Pour batter by scant 1/4 cupfuls onto hot griddle. Immediately drizzle the cinnamon-apple batter over the top of each pancake in a swirl pattern. Cook until tops are bubbly and bubbles burst; edges will look dry. With a pancake turner, turn and cook until undersides are golden. Place on a warm platter; keep warm.


    • Repeat until all batter is used, brushing griddle lightly with olive oil, if necessary, to prevent sticking.

    • Cook apple topping.

    • Melt butter in saucepan.
    • Add brown sugar, apples and cinnamon and cook until apples are tender and syrup has formed.
    • Pour over pancakes.

    These were delightful and kept us full for hours… Well me, longer than him. But I wasn’t hungry until dinner! (I did have a snack at the show – 2 clementines and 100 calorie pack of almonds)

    We went out to dinner to celebrate Valentines Day since we wont actually see each other on Monday. My boyfriend IS the best because he was craving lamb chops and we had reservations at Capital Grille but they didn’t have ONE Vegan option so he switched it to an Organic restaurant nearby just for me. Such a good guy 🙂 The restaurant was called Dogwood. If you live in Maryland this is definitely a place to check out. Everything was so fresh, the service was great and the atmosphere was comfy-cozy yet funky. I will 100% be a repeat offender.


    FYI – I only had my iPhone for pictures so they didn’t come out that great…

    Appetizer: Beet & Carrot Soup w/ a slice of Fresh Bread

    Dinner: Forbidden Rice & Roasted Butternut Squash Curry with zucchini and yellow squash, organic black rice, mild curried coconut sauce with Vann’s spices, golden currants and toasted almonds

    I am literally speechless over a veggie dish! These flavors were spicy, nutty and flavorful. I would love to make this one night…and eat it for days and days.

    Unfortunately they didn’t offer any Vegan desserts 😦 But my trusty iPhone found a place right around the corner that did!

    Thank you, Sweet Sin for fulfilling my craving. I ordered a chocolate ganache raspberry cupcake.

    I die.

    On our way out there was something else staring me in the eye.

    I couldn’t eat a cupcake and not a cookie. That’s prejudiced and I wont stand for that. So i ordered one for the car ride home. Hey, it was 40 minutes you never know when a craving will strike! I ate it 5 minutes into the drive. This cookie was so fluffy. I had only planned to eat half…Half turned into 3/4’s which turned into the whole thing. Oh well, life goes on. The cupcake was also lovely. Extremely decadent is how I would describe it.

    Are you hungry after reading all of that? Because I am!

    Friday night my boyfriend arrived and I FINALLY got to give him his birthday present… 5 days in Key West in less than a month!!! I better get serious about my workouts!

    Can.Not.Wait. Sun.Beach.Drinks w/ Umbrellas. Need I say more?

    On Saturday he got me tickets to the Disney Princess on Ice show in Baltimore. I LOVE princesses and claim to be am one so I was overly excited. There was a couple in the elevator with us who were probably in their 80’s going to see the show too and that made me think “That will absolutely be us one day”. Once a princess, always a princess.

    I was like a little kid in a candy shop…or a little girl at a Disney Princess show. After the show was over we waited in line with the 6 year olds other girls and he bought me a light up tiara.

    Really, does it get any better than this? Pancakes for breakfast, Disney on Ice, a Princess tiara, amazing vegan dinner, even better 2 vegan desserts? I think not. If you think of something please, feel free to let me know.

    I highly doubt Adam had as much fun as I did but he was a great sport.

    Thanks babe 🙂 Love you lots!

    We also watched The Social Network & Easy A. Neither were academy award winners but they were both entertaining and I liked learning the background story about how Facebook begun.

    On Friday night we also discovered Tasti D-lite was FINALLY open. I have been waiting for this for about a year…No joke. Please tell me you have one of these near you? If not maybe I should do a giveaway with some because I know they ship them ( I may or may not have had some shipped to me from Florida once). I discovered this ice cream with one of my best friends last May. 50 calories, 2 grams of fat, 2 grams of sugar, over 100 flavors and 50 toppings.  You can guarantee I will be there at least 3x next week.

    They switch flavors out daily so I have already programmed their number to my speed dial. Even though I couldn’t order anything because of Vegan week I went in and told the owner he’d be seeing a lot more of me and expressed my excitement. I’m not sure if he was flattered or wanted to request a restraining order.

    Ah, okay. I’m done obsessing.

    Also some other great news is I won the shoes from Shanna’s giveaway!! Charles David wedges are on their way to my house and I am so thankful and happy 🙂 Thanks so much again. I’ll post a picture of me in them when I get them but here is a sneak peek in the meantime.

    Sorry I didn’t have time to post on Favorite Friday… I’ll make up for it next week! I hope everyone is having a great weekend. This post was really long so hopefully you didn’t get too bored!

    QUESTIONS: Have you ever had a vegan dessert? What are you doing for Valentines Day?

    Day 16: Dream house

    I dream big… I want a lot of children, a huge kitchen where I have so much room I could ice skate if I wanted to, and someone to clean up after me because I am sort of messy when I cook. I’d also like an amazing view of the water and pottery barn-esque designed rooms. It will be colorful yet classy. Is that too much to ask?


    Day 17: Something you’re looking forward to

    Key West vacation… I’m so done with the snow, ice and numbing winds. Goodbye winter coat. Hello bikini.

    ANOTHER great giveaway by Angie! Go enter 🙂 All of these giveaways are making me want to have another….