Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

Very Vert May 5, 2009

This morning started off with a bowl of President’s Choice Cinnamon Spice Multigrain Oatmeal (uncooked) mixed with a little maple syrup and topped with almond butter and a golden delicious apple. I loved dipping the apple in the oats before each bite for a crunchy coating.

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For lunch I brought along a container of carrot, snow peas, cucumber, and red pepper.

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As well as a fruit selection including tomato, blood orange, cantaloupe, and mango. Really good mango…

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Later in the afternoon I tried an Elevate Me! Blueberry Cranberry Goji Berry Boost Bar. This bar was really good, I could definitely taste the berries, and they tasted REAL (which they were, obviously, but some bars still manage to taste fake). I think this would take second place behind the Chocolate Coconut Chew bar in an Elevate Me flavour competition.

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When I came home I had a few dates before leaving again to run some errands.

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And when I got home for the second time, I wanted dinner, but didn’t feel like cooking, and was craving a green monster. So I went SUPER-GREEN with green grapes, a lime, spinach, a banana, chia seeds, Natura unsweetened soy milk, and a little stevia.

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This monster hit the spot perfectly, I loved the lime addition.

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And finally my fellow Canadians may be interested in this sample up for grabs.

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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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Sweet and Sunny Friday March 27, 2009

What a warm and beautiful sunny day, I’ll accept yesterday’s rain along with today’s sun if it means winter is really over. This lovely Friday morning started out with a sweet treat for breakfast. Rooting around in the cupboard last night I found a jar of toffee sprinkles my roomie brought home from the ‘bucks ages ago. Throwing caution to the wind I added a liberal dosing of the tasty artificially flavoured corn syrup bits on top of my steel cut oats mixed with ground flax. A little bit, once in a while won’t kill me. And they were good, especially along with the spoonful of amazing Maranatha organic creamy peanut butter. Peanut Toffee Buzz is a Clif bar flavour, right? I entirely understand the flavour combination now. I also happily consumed my last cute little red delicious apple. Alas, no more “just for kids” fruits for me.

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Later in the morning I tested a new (to me) variety of apple, Piñata, it was good, but I wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between it and a gala without the label sticker. I also had a juicy blood orange. The apple is not pink inside, that’s just a drop of juice from the orange, it was making itself difficult to seperate into sections.

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For a late lunch I munched my way through a giant pile of veggies along with some egg white fried in a bit of sesame oil. There was raw red and green pepper strips, carrot slices, and steamed broccoli.

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For some reason I was starving by the end of the afternoon, I had no emergency snacks, and there were donuts and muffins in the kitchen due to birthdays.  So after resisting for a while, I finally chose a Tim Horton’s Wheat Carrot Muffin.  I only ate the top though.  I forgot how greasy store bought muffins can be…

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Since I wasn’t starving any more, I took a detour on the way home from work and stopped by Planet Organic. They have two locations in the northern outskirts of Toronto and one in Missisauga (as well as BC, Edmonton, Calgary, and Halifax). Nomally I wouldn’t go to a grocery store so far from home, but someone mentioned them to me and out of curiousity I checked out their website. I saw on their flyer that a) Clif bars are on sale for a decent price, not the lowest ever, but decent and b) they say they have 13 flavours available. Now I don’t know about you other Canadians, but I can only count 7 flavours of clif bars I’ve seen in stores. So I had to go check them out. The fact that it’s a nice day for a walk helped.   And with images of apricots, blueberry crisp, and white chocolate macadamia nuts in my head, I set out.  Unfortunately, they lied a little and they cheated a little.  They lied because there were only 11 flavours, and they cheated because 11 includes the number of Luna bar flavours (I guess technically they’re Clif bars too).  Grrrr.  Ironically, there was one flavour I haven’t seen anywhere else, Peanut Toffee Buzz.  So as an ode to my breakfast I pick up a couple.  I probably won’t go back to Planet Organic though, over all they’re more expensive for the same products that are available in more convenient locations for me.

I tried a bite of the Clif bar when I got home.  It was good, but not great compared to the incredile discovery that was my oat toppings.  The bar needed more peanutyness.

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Eventually for a late dinner I fixed up a quick salad of spinach, red pepper, carrot, lime juice, parmesan, and the last of the Sahale Snacks Socorro Macadamia nuts.  Nice and flavourful.

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Roasty Toasty March 26, 2009

I got a surprise last night when I checked the mailbox and found a sample of Kaizen whey protein powder I forgot I ordered a while ago.

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I decided to test it our in my oats this morning.  I mixed 1/3 the packet of chocolate powder with a bit of water, then added that to my steel cut oats and topped the bowl with a Banana Bread Elevate Me! bar.  I was going for protein this morning, can you tell?  I tried the protein/water mixture before adding it the the oats, and it tasted really good, like hot chocolate (it’s sweetened with stevia), but unfortunately I couldn’t taste any chocolate at all in the oatmeal.  But I guess adding no flavour is better than adding a bad flavour.  I’ll probably mix the rest of the powder up in some sort of beverage.  I don’t have enough experience with protein powders to make a very good comparison of this powder to others.

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For lunch I happily dug into another huge salad.  This one included romaine, cucumber, yellow and orange pepper, a carrot, and another turkey sausage.  For dressing I brought along some yogurt and Big Bull steak sauce (I think I might be a little obsessed).

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Later in the afternoon I enjoyed a not-so-blood orange.  Seriously, where did all the colour go?  I also had a whole wheat english muffin spread with peanut butter, pumpkin pie spice, and dried cherries.  Dried fruit in PB sandwiches tastes so much better than jam, strong flavour without being too sweet.

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Tonight I tried out some Health Valley Spelt Flakes with Cranberries while waiting for the rest of my dinner to roast in the oven.  I just ate it dry, but it was really good, nice and crunchy.

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Then I enjoyed a big plate full of roasted cauliflower with Indian Malasa spice, and butternut squash fries with ketchup for dipping.

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And dessert was a scoop of Haagen Dasz Half Fat Vanilla Ice cream.  Yum.

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BSI Cabbage: Sweet Cabbage Dessert Soup March 22, 2009

This morning started out a bit late after I slept in.  I was in the mood for something quick for breakfast, and there’s not much else faster than cereal, so I filled a bowl with Kashi Seven Whole Grain Puffs, and finished a box of Nature’s Path Blueberry Almond Muesli.  No more freeze dried blueberry blue milk for me.  There was also a bit of unsweetened vanilla Almond breeze involved.

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Later I had a blood orange and many cups of tea, mostly herbal.  I was working on clearing out the overflowing tea cupboard.  I discovered that Celestial Seasonings Strawberry Kiwi tea is really sweet, I actually went to check the package to see if there was somehow sugar hiding in the tea bag (there wasn’t).

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When I started to get hungry for lunch I got to work on this week’s BSI entry.  Christina chose cabbage as the ingredient of the week, and I had half a head of red cabbage already in the fridge.  I did some thinking and came up with a flavour combination that sounded good, if a bit odd.  So here you have a recipe for Sweet Cabbage Dessert Soup.  I just can’t decide weather it should be a regular soup or a dessert soup, since it turned out sweeter than I expected, and for some reason tastes really rich (but in a good way).  I had it for lunch and it filled me up nicely.

The soup ingredients to make about 4 cups are:

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1 onion, chopped
2 tsp almond oil (any not-strongly flavoured oil should be fine, my other choices were olive and sesame)
2 carrots, chopped (mine happened to be purple and yellow, but orange should be fine)
1/2 head red cabbage, roughly chopped
1 grapefruit, chopped
1 cup brewed mint tea
2 tsp dried mint
2 oz creme de cassis (black currant liquor)

I started out by caramellizing the onion very well in the oil.

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Then I added all the other ingredients, carrots on the bottom, in the tea to boil, cabbage on top to steam, brought the pot to a boil, and let them simmer for about ten minutes, until the carrots are tender  (remember, more liquids appear out of the veggies).  After a stir it looked like this.

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At which point I pureed the lot with my handy stick blender.  I like my pureed soup thick, so you might want to add some more mint tea or water at this point for a thinner consistency.

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And I topped the bowl with an optional spoonful of yogurt and more dried mint (although fresh would have been a prettier garnish).  Part way through enjoying my bowl I realized it reminds me of the rhubarb sauce my mom make every summer.  It would actually probably go really well chilled on ice cream.  I think I’m leaning towards calling it a dessert soup.

And since these giveways tie in so nicely,

This soup would be even better pureed super smooth in a vitamix such as the one is being given away over at Jumbo Empanadas

And instead of the creme de cassis, I’m betting a shot of POM would work well, and can be had for free with coupons from Oh She Glows.

Anyway, speaking of ice cream, later in the afternoon I treated myself to some half-fat Vanilla Haagen Dasz.  Yummy.  But multiple that bowl by 2, it was a half serving anyway.  I also nibbled on a few FoodShouldTasteGood Chocolate tortilla chips.

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Dinner time rolled around and I retrieved the half of the seitan burger I brought home last night from the fridge and made a new one.  Sitting on a whole wheat english muffin (organic from Whole Foods, really good) is romaine lettuce, the seitan patty, Big Bull Steak sauce, whole grain dijon mustard, broiled emmental cheese, and grape tomatoes.  A tasty burger indeed.  I should try making seitan some time….

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Now I have some Nature’s Path Optimum Rebound cereal waiting for me to snack on while watching the Sunday night CTV trifecta of The Mentalist, Amazing Race, and Desperate Houswives.  Before heading to bed so I can get up for work tomorrow….

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Crunch time March 20, 2009

So I tend to not get anywhere close to my 6-7 servings of grains per day, but today was an exception.

I started out with a giant cereal bowl for breakfast.  In the mix is Nature’s Path Kamut Puffs, All Bran, Alpen cereal, a banana, and a few pumpkin seeds and cashew pieces, all sitting in unsweetened vanilla almond breeze.

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Later in the morning I dug into a golden delicious apple, a blood orange, and a nice ripe kiwi.

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For lunch there was a huge container of steamed broccoli, grape tomatoes, and an enormous carrot, along with ample amounts of hummus for dipping.

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On my way home from work I snacked on an Espresso Cocoa Crunch Elevate Me! bar.  It was okay.  I’m not a huge fan of coffee anyway, but I don’t think the coffee beans worked very well with all the sweet fruit, it was rather odd.  But the bar kept me full while I went on a grand grocery expedition which was extended by a few blocks of detour when a street closed for construction over the weekend between the time I entered a grocery store, and when I exited the store in  the generally pedestrian unfriendly area under a freeway.

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I got home not too long ago, and plan on going to bed soon.  I’m not very hungry, but know I should eat something, so I’m digging into a bowl containing the last bits of two boxes of Kashi cereal, GoLean and Honey Almond Flax.  Crunch, crunch….

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At least I managed to clear 3 boxes/bags off the shelf!  I finished the kamut puffs too…I’m starting to need new cereal…

 

What begins and ends with yogurt? March 18, 2009

This weekend I had an odd craving for fruit salad.  The canned kind with bright red cherries.  So I ventured down the appropriate isle in the supermarket to check out the offerings.  I was quite pleased to find some good old Del Monte packed in fruit juice, so I bought a can.  This morning I incorporated the fruity treat into a breakfast parfait inspired by Caroline at The Broccoli Hut.  I filled up a glass with layers of fruit salad, Mapleton’s Organics plain nonfat yogurt, and some delicious Grandma Emily’s Blueberry Cranberry Granola.

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And I grabbed a handful of almonds before heading out the door.

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I was going to bring the last of the chili to work with me, but when I opened the container I discovered mold growing along the egde.  Ewwww!  So instead, I chopped up some veggies and hummus.  There were white, orange, and purple carrots, grape tomatoes, cucmber, and a piece of sweet potato.

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For snacks I brought a juicy sliced Lady Alice apple (new to me variety, very tasty), a blood orange, and some delicious figs.  I love  fresh figs.

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For dinner I fixed a pseudo-sloppy joe.  Between two slices of toasted Ezekiel bread I sandwiched some Yves Italian Veggie Ground Round, cucumber slices, and lots of ketchup.  Yummy.  The sandwich was paired with a heap of steamed broccoli topped with honey mustard.

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And finally for dessert I had my precious container of Oikos Honey Greek Yogurt.  Mmmmmm.  Based on the single flavour from each brand that I tried I’m going to have to say I like the Oikos better than Chobani.  Of course it has to be the more expensive one.

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Now could the Canadian grocers jump on the not-ridiculously-expensive non/low fat greek yogurt bandwagon, please and thank you?  Seriously, it shouldn’t be that difficult, considering regular Stonyfield Farm products are relatively easy to come by, you’re already dealing with the same company.