Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

Bright Sunshine and Lemons April 17, 2009

20°C

20°C!

That’s all I have to say.

Well not really, but it is beautiful outside 🙂

I started off my morning with a crunchy bowl of Nature’s Path Flaxplus Pumpkin Raisin Crunch cereal with unsweetened vanilla almond breeze. Could there be anymore raisins in a bowl? I love it.

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I made a big salad for lunch. You should recognize the veggies by now, I’ve got a lot of them in the fridge, spinach, snow peas, carrot, cucumber, red pepper, and pork tenderloin. And for dressing I added a bit of water to an almost empty bottle of honey mustard to get the stuff stuck on the sides.

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In the afternoon I snacked on honeydew melon and a ya pear. I was rather amused to see the sticker on the pear said “yali” where you would normal find the variety name. I wonder who made that decision, since just “ya” is the variety name, like bosc, or bartlett, and “li” means pear in chinese.

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I also had a handful of almonds before heading home for the weekend.  The leftover smoothie from yesterday (kale, vanilla yogurt, orange juice concentrate)  I had as a morning snack.

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For dinner tonight I fixed up my BSI: Lemon recipe! One of the things I love to use lots of lemon in is hummus, but plain old hummus seemed kinda borning for a BSI entry. I was considering more savoury oatmeal blended CCV style, but didn’t want the dish to be too goopy, I wanted a bit more texture. Then my eyes, which were looking at the assorted oat pile on the pantry shelf started to stray. They skipped over the rarely disturbed pasta boxes, and landed on a much more interesting grain, quinoa.

So may I present Lemony Hummus Style Blended Quinoa

The ingredients for 2 servings:

  • 1/2 cup quinoa, uncooked
  • juice and pulp from 1/2 lemon (or 2 TBSP lemon juice if you don’t want to surpreme the fruit)
  • zest from 1/2 lemon
  • 2 Tablespoons tahini
  • 6 cloves roasted garlic (remember, they get much milder after roasting)
  • salt to taste (I actually didn’t add any)

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First I simply boiled the quinoa in water, then drained it.

While the quinoa cooked I zested and supremed the lemon. Mainly because I love supreming citrus, so much fun 🙂 And I roast garlic in big batches and keep the cloves in a jar in the fridge, but otherwise it would take 20-30 minutes in a 400 degree oven lightly wrapped in aluminum foil.

Then I threw everything in the pot with the quinoa and gave it a whirl with the immersion blender. And promptly ate a serving over a bed of spinach and grape tomatoes for dinner. Best salad topper ever, lucious lemon goodness. Simply delicious.  This definitely goes on my list of recipes to make again.  The only change I might make is to cut the amount of tahini in half if I’m not going to use it as a salad topper because it does turn out very creamy with a full 2 TB.  Must be the blending at work.

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And for dessert my roomie spoiled me again (jealous yet?) by making oatmeal cookies.  That boy just has too much time on his hands now that it’s exam season.  And I might have had two.  So many treats this week, gah!

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And hopefully by tomorrow I’ll have one final awesome treat, but this one will last a lot longer, and I’ll be spoiling the roomie for a change.  Stay tuned for that (I’m really hoping it works out).

 

Spoiled April 16, 2009

I’m loving the beautiful spring like weather outside.  I just wish I could actually spend more time outside during the day instead of being cooped up at work.  I suppose that’s what weekends are for….and summer hours, I did enjoy those Friday afternoons when I started my coop back in September.

Anyways this morning started out with a first for me.  A delicious Fitnessista breakfast cookie!  I used oats, Kaizen chocolate whey protein powder, almond butter, unsweetened vanilla almond breeze, and dried blueberries.  The cookie was a little too wet when I took it out of the fridge this morning (note to self, reduce liquids next time) so I stuck it in the microwave for a few minutes, and when it came out, I could actually lift the cookie off the plate, and eat it like…a real cookie!  It even had the same texture of an oatmeal cookie, I was quite pleased.

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While I was enjoying my cookie I packed up some lunch to take to work.  First there was a fruit side, honeydew melon, strawberries and the last of the mango.

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Then there was a veggies and protein side, snow peas, cucumber, carrot, red pepper, and roasted pork tenderloin.

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And finally there was a Cob’s bakery hot cross bun with Balderson Vinter’s cheddar.  This is where I was spoiled by the roomie again, he’s been giving me so many treats lately.  I was especially surprised by the fact that the bun contained choclate chips instead of raisins, obviously I didn’t look too closely at it before packing!  I think the bag must have contained a mix because I looked at one of the other buns and it definitely contained the usual raisins.

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When I got home I fixed up something I was planning to make yesterday before the surprise dinner.  I had been thinking about this combination anyways, but when I saw it on Oh She Glows, I had to go for it.  I fixed up a green monster with kale, Liberty Vanilla yogurt (I’ll save the cranberry granola for later), a big spoonful of orange juice concentrate, and water.

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A sweet and creamy combination.

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And for something solid I ate another hunk of pork, a dill pickle (yes, I might be slightly obessessed, the 2L jar in the fridge isn’t helping), and a spread of mustard on some Finncrisp Rye crackers.  A lovely salty, savoury contrast to the sweet smoothie.

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Sweet Satisfaction April 15, 2009

This morning got off to wonderful start with a bowl of Health Valley Spelt Flakes with cranberries and unsweetened vanilla almond breeze, and a pile of sweet honeydew melon.

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Late in the morning I dug into a Fuji apple and atualfo mango. The mango is a bit over-ripe, which makes it delicious, but I’m starting to get concerned it might go bad. But I should be fine if I finish it tomorrow, which is no hardship on my part 🙂

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For lunch I started out with some carrot, grape tomatoes, and steamed broccoli.

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The veggie goodness was followed by a hunk of roasted pork tenderloin, and couple of tiny sweet potatos that took a trip to the microwave before consumption.

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When I got home I was greated by a surprise treat.  My roomie and a friend were making a fancy dinner and they invited my to join in.  I had a delicious bowl of leek and potato soup.

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Followed by a piece of bread with a slice of Camembert and some Balderson Vinter’s Red Wine Cheddar  (aka some of the best cheddar I’ve ever had, and this wasn’t the first time).

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And a really good glass of wine, just a little sweet the way I like it.  I even went back afterwards to take a picture of the bottle for future reference.

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And for dessert I had some sweet and satisfying maple glazed almonds.  A wonderful humpday treat.

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A lot better than nothing April 13, 2009

Busy, yay! I finally got a bunch of stuff to do at work today, not exactly mind stimulating engineering work, mostly pulling reports together, but enough to make the time pass by quickly. On a completely different note, I think my antioxidant filled anti-sunburn plan from Saturday’s Scarborough Bluff adventure may have worked. Yesterday my face was still a little red, but didn’t hurt, and today it is simply tanned. Of course I have no idea if the burn would have been any worse/lasted longer without the acai juice (I need a control!), but it’s something to think about.

This morning started out with a simple yet delicious bowl of Grandma Emily’s Blueberry Cranberry granola with unsweetened vanilla almond breeze and mango.

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I might have snacked on a Source Salba Krispy Rice Square in the morning…

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For lunch I brought along the rest of my Coconut Curry Shepard’s Pie. I let it cool completely in the baking dish yesterday before transferring it over to the lunch container, and the cauliflower top held together much better than when it was still hot. The sauce also bubbled up over the topping in the oven, another reason to use more cauliflower.

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My afternoon snack was a crisp golden delicious apple and super sweet grape tomatoes.

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When I got home I was craving meat, which is odd for me, but who am I to ignore such a craving? Especially when I had some already cooked in the fridge? I finely chopped some roasted pork tenderloin, heated it with honey garlic barbeque sauce, and served it in romaine lettuce leaves (since I wasn’t really feeling any other veggies).

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And for dessert I had a Liberte vanilla yogurt with chocolate granola, sweet and delicious (almost a bit too sweet, I’m too used to plain now…)

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Now, I’ve been plagued recently with a case of phantom publishes the last few days, so let’s hope this post actually goes up tonight!

 

Are you going to Scarborough Fair Bluffs? April 12, 2009

Today was a fun adventure to Scarborough Bluffs (33+ km > 3/4 marathon!). I’ve heard of them before, but never seen them, and going there has been on my todo list for a while.

But first breakfast, Peanut Toffee oats again. I cooked oat bran in unsweetened vanilla almond breeze, then topped it with peanut butter and toffee sprinkles. As delicious as ever.

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I passed by these.  They don’t seem to have been adversely affected by the snow and cold since last weekend

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I timed the affair so I would get to Bluffer’s Park around lunch time.

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I brought along some highly portable sustenance, a Raw Revolution Spirulina and Cashew bar, and a couple small bottle of water. The bar was delicous, but it a bit oily on the fingers. I especially liked the whole almonds and cashews hiding in it.

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Then I had fun taking some pictures.

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This little guy didn’t seem to mind that I was kneeling a couple feet away from him.

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He was much more interested in eating his grassy lunch.

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It’s not exactly yachting season yet…

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But there were a few people around.

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One of the nicer views of downtown TO on the way home from the Prince Edward Viaduct.

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By the time I got home I was starving for some early dinner, and luckily my roomie was just finishing a huge pot of stuff, and offered to share (aka he made way too much and wanted help eating it up). I know there’s rice, lentils, parsnips, broccoli, mushrooms, onions, and soy sauce involved.

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I also snacked on a plateful of snow peas, celery, and carrot along with a dollop of hummus.

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Later in the evening I was hungry again for a snack, and realized I might have gotten a bit of a sunburn on my face from being outside for >7 hours (oops), so I went in search of a source of antioxidants, figuring they could only help.

My eyes landed upon a box of acai berry juice that’s being hanging out in the pantry for a while. This was the first time I tried this, and the juice was really good, but I was a bit put off by the layer of brown/green fat on top of it (that’s supposed to be there, right?). I’m not sick now so I suppose it is. And if the antioxidants are fat-soluble, then they are now on my lips, which I can only suppose will help with the burn.

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I enjoyed the juice along with a piece of microwaved sweet potato with nutmeg, and a slice of Balderson 2 year old cheddar cheese.

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And now I’m ready for bed, good night!

 

Happy Un-Friday! April 9, 2009

Breakfast this morning was a crunchy nutty bowl of cereal.  In the mix was Kashi Seven Whole Grain Puffs, Nature’s Path Leapin Lemurs, and Cinnamon Puffins.  Then I threw on some very well camouflaged cranberry glazed almonds, and unsweetened vanilla almond breeze.  To really nut-ify the bowl I mixed some PB2 into the almond breeze first, the result was quite tasty.

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I had a few containers packed up to take to work.  I even packed them before the sun went down last night! The first was full of delicious honeydew.

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The second was a veggie packed mix of red pepper, snow peas, and sweet carrot slices.

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And the third held a juicy blood orange, blackberries, and last piece of basa fish, and some fried egg  whites.

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My dinner didn’t look very pretty, but it was tasty.  I cooked up oat bran with jo tasi/garlic chives, nutritional yeast and salt.  Then I steamed some cauliflower.  And to finish it off, I blended the two pots together, CCV/K style, yummy creamy mushy mess.  That’s worthy of an extra entry or two in Katie’s chocolatey giveaway isn’t it (there’s still time to enter!)?

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And dessert was something special, cashew pudding.  But it was cashew fruit instead of nut, and it was made simply of the juice and chia seeds.  And it was delicous.  I just had to try the juice when I saw it for sale, it tastes tropicaly, kind of a cross between pear and pineapple, but not tart at all, sort of creamy, I like it.  And I still have half the box to do something with, lucky me 🙂

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Less than zero April 6, 2009

As crazy as it sounds, I wish it was colder (or warmer, that might actually be better) out today. Simply because if it was colder we would have real snow (or warmer – rain). As opposed to the slushy mess to be found on the ground outside. The slushy mess that I had to walk through to get to work and unavoidably get wet feet for the rest of the day. I was happy to get home and remove my shoes and socks. Actually, if it were plain raining my shoes might still have gotten wet, so colder would in fact be better. But enough complaining.

Breakfast started off the day with some super crunchy cereal. I had a mix of Health Valley Spelt Flakes with Cranberries, Cinnamon Puffins, and All Bran. Then I topped the bowl with unsweetened vanilla Almond Breeze, some banana slices, and a touch of homemade strawberry jam.

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I packed up a few containers to take to work with me today. The first one contained a very yellow Granny Smith apple and some strawberries. I’m a bit disappointed in the strawberries, they’re coming from California now, and aren’t nearly as sweet and flavourful as the crop that was coming out of Florida last month. Must I wait until June to get Ontario strawberries again?

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A second container held the rest of the grated broccoli stalks and carrot from last night, topped again with strained plain yogurt and Big Bull steak sauce.

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A third container was filled with zucchini and celery sticks, orange pepper strips, and snow peas.

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And then I figured I should find some more protein somewhere, so I mashed half a banana with a serving of PB2 and some water, spread the mixture on a La Tortilla Factory Multigrain wrap, and sprinkled the lot with dried blueberries.

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This made such a good wrap! The blueberries rehydrated overnight and by lunchtime they were nice a plump and filled the wrap with berrylicious flavour 🙂

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For dinner I tossed a pile of cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and carrot in olive oil and thyme and roasted them. The veggies were delish. And so were the Terra Sweet Potato chips I had on the side.

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I even had room for a sweet dessert today, Haagen Dasz Half Fat Vanilla Ice cream topped with Shasha Co. Spelt Ginger Snaps. Nom nom nom.  A nice end to a dreary Monday.

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