Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

It Started Out Raw July 23, 2009

Breakfast this morning was a funny little green monster.  I’m not entirely sure I liked it.  I split it into two parts because I wasn’t very hungry when I woke up, and the second part had a really weird texture when I pulled it out.  It contained kale, frozen grapes, wheat grass ice cubes, chia seeds, and a handful of dates and almonds.  I think the lesson is almond milk > whole almonds and banana > dates.

2009_07_23_monster

My lunch was a wonderful salad, that I luckily packed into a container with a domed lid, because I definitely needed to extra room to fit everything in.  It contained zucchini, carrot, yellow pepper, snow peas, avocado, and Marti cheese.

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And later I snacked on a bunch if super ripe and delicious plums and blueberries.

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Then dinner is what started out raw.  I blended up a very tasty soup using king oyster mushrooms, a hunk of leek, kabocha, a Kallo no salt veggie stock cube, salt, and pepper.  Garnished with some delightful Live Food Bar Nacho Chips.  The soup tasted good, but then I quickly learned something.  If you eat kabocha raw, it kinda feels like the back of your thoat is swelling up and gets really scratchy.  So I quickly stopped, and poured the soup in a pan to cook for a bit.  At this point I was paranoid, so I left it on the stove for longer than it probably needed and ended up with a very tasty kabocha mash due to the amount of water that had boiled off.  But I happy ate it without feeling like I was going to suffocate 🙂  I also enjoyed a few more nachos (and lots of water to get rid of the icky throat feeling) while waiting for the soup to cook.

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The Most Efficient Pitter July 20, 2009

I made a delicious green monster this morning thanks to the use of a fruit I’ve never blended before, cherries. In the process of pitting the cherries, I figured out the best tool to use to extract the pit it definitely your teeth fater cutting the cherry in half quickly, and your cheeks are the perfect storage locations for the pits so they don’t go flying everywhere. Of course you can only do this if you’re the one who will be eating the fruit, and this method probably shouldn’t be used in polite company, but you have to appreciate the tastiness factor of the food prep stage 😀 The other ingredients were collards greens, wheatgrass ice cubes, and banana.

2009_07_20_monster

For lunch I brought along an S&M salad of romaine, spinach, and zucchini dressed in mashed avocado, lime juice and salt. I threw the dulse/hemp/rosemary/raw cracker topping in a bag to prevent it from getting soggy before lunch, and it turns out I probably should have put the salt in the bag too because my salad was definitely wilted when I pulled it out to eat. I’ve done avocado and juice on lettuce before without it wilting, so I’m guessing it must have been the hygroscopic salt that caused the problem. At least it still tasted good 🙂

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And for snacking I had some tomato, cucumber, and sweet, sweet pineapple.

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When I got home I dipped into the date and almond stash.

2009_07_20_dates

Then I eventually got around to throwing together some dinner.  Somehow I happened on a FANTASTIC combination of flavours while creating kabocha tacos!  Into collard wraps I stuffed tomato paste, slivered leek, big slices of king oyster mushroom, steamed kabocha (sliced thinly to steam faster), and a grating of Marti cheese.  The tomato paste/kabocha/cheese combo was amazing!

2009_07_20_dinner

 

I’ve got the Jicamas June 19, 2009

The fridge always gets so empty on Fridays.  Which is good in a way because it makes room for weekend shopping trips.  I guess that means I’m good at judging how much produce I’ll eat in a week?

Breakfast this morning was sweet and creamy and delicious, the last of  the kale, chia seeds, frozen banana, last of the blueberries and my last giant lychee. It turned out super dark green (thought the camera can’t really tell the difference). The only thing that would have made this monster better is a little Jay Robb action via Katie’s Giveaway!

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Short day at work so I just brought a little salad, the last few leaves of romaine topped with my last carrot, some peas and some tasty feta.

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When I got home I fixed up a snacky bowl filled with steamed kabocha, broccoli, cauliflower, red and green pepper, and cherries.

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Plus a some dried blueberries found themselves in my mouth.

2009_06_19_blueberries

For dinner I was excited to try something new, almost raw sushi. No, I did not used cooked fish. I bought a jicama and processed it to rice-size, squeezed out a lot of water using a towel, then mixed it with some apple cider vinegar (if I had rice wine vinegar, I would have used it) and agave. My fillings were asparagus and shitake mushrooms which were sliced and soaked in teriyaki sauce (likely, not raw, not that I care that much) then had the excess liquid squeezed out of them. And my nori is toasted. But that definitely didn’t stop the rolls from being super delicious! I liked the jicama plain too, crisp and slightly sweet without being fruity, I should get some more for further experimentation. Plus I get to have more tomorrow because there’s extra rice 🙂

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And a late night snack of my own, properly flavoured Honey Sesame Kashi Crackers.

2009_06_19_crackers

 

Hide the protein! June 16, 2009

I had something different for breakfast this morning.  When I made oatmeal this weekend I made extra and froze some.  This morning I took out one of those portions (oats and banana) and nuked it with extra water, chia seeds, PB2 and a few toffee sprinkles.  And along with it I had a Starbucks Fruit salad from the pile that had taken up residence in the fridge overnight, and a delicious giant lychee.

2009_06_16_breakfast

For snacking I brought to work with me a container of kabocha, two ways.  First as a sandwich with almond butter, and second cubed and drizzled with soy sauce.  Plus I brought a shitake mushroom because I had an empty space in the container, and I wanted to try one raw to see if I liked it.  I know I don’t like button/cremini mushrooms raw, but I thought I would give the shitake a try.  The verdict? Not so much.  But I did thoroughly enjoy those cherries for lunch dessert.

2009_06_16_snacks

Lunch itself was a giant salad of romaine topped with carrot, red pepper, snap peas, and tofu marinated in soy sauce/sesame oil/apple cider vinegar.  I seem to be developing a thing for soy sauce…and am running out….must stock up!

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When I got home I had a tasty medjool, straight up.

2009_06_16_date

Then for dinner I got a bit creative.  My base was spinach flavoured shirataki noodles, steamed broccoli, and shitake mushrooms sauteed in a bit of olive oil.  Then I hid some protein in the sauce.  I blended a chunk of tofu with nutritional yeast, garlic powder, a splash of vinegar and water, salt and pepper.  And I was happy to discover it tastes really good, and actually cheesy!  But next time I either need to make a bigger batch, or use silken tofu, or both.  I made so little the sauce was flinging itself away from the blades and didn’t blend very smoothly.  So it doesn’t look very pretty, but it sure tasted good!

2009_06_16_dinner

 

Out Of The Fridge And Into The Freezer June 15, 2009

Breakfast this morning was a icy cold due to the use of frozen fruit, since I realized the freezer is starting to get quite full. But it was a welcome coolness since my room was a but warm after my window decided to blow itself shut last night. In the tropical mix was kale, chia seeds, banana, and pineapple with a sprinkle of coconut on top. And along with that I had perfect, giant lychee. Seriously, this lychee tasted exactly like my memories of the awesome lychees I had in Taiwan when they were in season. And to give you an idea of it’s size, your typical lychee is about the same size as that toonie.

2009_06_15_breakfast

For lunch I chopped up a giant salad. It started with romaine, then piles of kabocha, asparagus, red pepper, and cucumber were added. Plus I mixed up a little dumpling sauce for dressing, soy sauce, sesame oil, and apple cider vinegar, delish.

2009_06_15_salad

And for snacking I had a big container of strawberries, a peach, and an apricot. Please pardon the slightly mutilated peach, it was nice and ripe (ie. soft), and the pit was not cooperating with my extraction attempt.

2009_06_15_fruit

Then for dinner I fixed up a stirfry of sorts, I boiled some amaranth, then tossed it in with shitake mushrooms and Europe’s Best Nature’s Balance frozen veggie mix sauteed with olive oil, parsley, thyme, sage, and rosemary, and balsamic vinegar, plus a sprinkle of feta cheese.

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And that savoury bowl was followed by a sweet dessert, kabocha with a swirl of hemp seed butter and raspberry jam. This stuff is addictive, I swear.

2009_06_15_dessert

 

Superthick June 9, 2009

I ate my green monster with a spoon this morning, it was so thick. I went with a classic peach/mango combo today along with spinach, chia seeds, and ice instead of water. And it was soooooo gooood 🙂

2009_06_09_monster

For lunch there was a salad mess of zucchini, carrot, and Devil Dawg with yogurt, mustard, and chive dressing.

2009_06_09_lunch

And a bowl of steamed kabocha with teriyaki sauce. I understand how this squash can be habit forming…

2009_06_09_kabocha

And in the afternoon I snacked on blueberries and a non-fuzzy golden kiwi (with the skin!).

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When I got home I nabbed a dried peach before it could get in front of the camera while busy chopping up mushrooms for a giant stirfry. The rest of the bowl was filled with snow peas, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Shitake + snow peas + sesame has to be one of my all time favourite combos.

2009_06_09_dinner

And for dessert there was a large slice of juicy sweet honeydew. And I went back for a sliver more, of course.

2009_06_09_honeydew

 

Mango Mint Madness June 8, 2009

Note to self: Catch up on sleep tonight.

After thoroughly enjoying the movie One Week last night, which made me want to take a road trip across the country, or at least to Northern Ontario, where I’ve never been, it took forever to fall asleep. Which meant I was very reluctant to get up this morning. But my green monster started to wake me up by the time I left for work. In the mix was banana, mango, chia seeds, chocolate mint, and a couple handfuls of spinach. Om nom nom…

2009_06_08_monster

Later in the morning I snacked on these biscotti thins that were found in the work kitchen. Well, technically I ate a different package, and brought these home for a picture…and because they were really good.

2009_06_08_biscotti

For lunch I brought the left over steamed broccoli and kabocha, sprinkled with soy sauce, along with a carrot and celery. And a Devil Dawg, which the cubicle-mate tried and loved and requested the recipe for 🙂

2009_06_08_lunch

And for and afternoon snack there was handful of snow peas with bean dip, and the rest of the Saturn peaches.

2009_06_08_snack

Then finally, for dinner I had a giant spin-zuke-shroom salad doused in BBBV.

2009_06_08_salad

Plus a delicious homemade (not by me) peanut butter granola bar. Only half of it made it onto the plate though, the crumbly bits went directly from bag to mouth.

2009_06_08_granola

 

Steamy Creamy Kaboch-y June 7, 2009

So last night I had some breakfat/dinner after a few hours of evening napping before heading to work.  I experimented a bit with my greens and found some beets greens in the freezer which I used to make pancakes.  I used the same recipe from last weekend but subbed ~ 2/3 cup thawed beet greens for the other veggies. I think I used an extra T of cornmeal too, because I didn’t bother looking up my own recipe, and it was too long ago now for me to clearly remember what I did last night. This new combo turned out really well, especially topped with a mixture of yogurt and black bean dip. And on the side was a Devil Dawg patty and about twice the number of strawberries that made it onto the plate.

2009_06_07_dinner

When I got home in the morning I was starving, so I finished off the strawberries topped with yogurt and some freeze-dried strawberry filled granola I found in a bulk bin. Then I had another bowl of just the granola because I was hungry and tired and too lazy to get up and get something else.

2009_06_07_yogurt

After a badly needed shower and doing laundry (subway tunnels are dirty, dirty places) I napped for a bit and woke up hungry again, so I finished off the granola, then discovered a fantastic flavour combination in a half a pita spread with hemp seed butter and homemade strawberry jam.

2009_06_07_pita

That snack held me over nicely until a more reasonable dinner hour when I set my steamer to work again on a pile of kabocha and broccoli. Plus I stirfried some shitake mushrooms and snow peas in a bit of soy sauce. Kabocha is GOOD. I also think it may also be what my dad actually planted the year the buttercup squashes were tastier then usual. I’ve already requested collards greens for the garden this year, now I’ll need to see if there’s still time to plant kabocha!

2009_06_07_steamed

And for dessert I dug into some of the cutest peaches ever.

2009_06_07_peaches

I dare you to pass by Saturn peaches in the grocery store and NOT buy them! The pits are so tiny, peanut sized!

2009_06_07_saturn

 

Jiggle in a Wigglin’ Spree May 22, 2009

As promised, last night there was spice cake, with maple icing even. Don’t mind the flat appearance of the cake, my roomie bought an old cookbook from the 1930s and made a few radical substitutions. He used whole wheat pastry flour instead of white (though we were wondering if they even had white flour back then), and he used 1T butter plus 1 1/4 cups 1% milk instead of 1 cup cream and 1/4 cup milk. So while the wasn’t very light and fluffy, it did taste absolutely delicious. And the icing recipe called for Log Cabin Syrup, but we upgraded it to maple, which was fantastic with the spice cake 🙂

2009_05_22_cake

This morning I started out with a SUPER strong green monster. I wanted to actually drink it at home, instead of bringing it with me to work, and I want to have enough room left over to enjoy part two of breakfast, so I used the usual amount of kale (3-4 leaves), a foot long sprig of mint, only half a banana (instead of 1 plus a few chunks of other fruit), 1 T of chia seeds (instead of 2), and enough water to make a bit over a cup of green monster (instead of 3-4 cups). Let’s just say it was a bit stronger than I anticipated, but I drank it.

2009_05_22_monster

And I was still hungry enough to fully enjoy this big plateful of watermelon chunks (that didn’t fit into the big container destined for the fridge nor the bag for the freezer, so obviously it had to ALL be eaten this morning).

2009_05_22_watermelon

For lunch I had delicious (and out of focus) spinach salad topped with beets, carrot, and Back to Basics Balsamic Vinaigrette.

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When I got home from work in the middle of the afternoon I had an extra sliver of spice cake…or two.

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And for dinner I had another salad that did an excellent job of cleaning out the fridge at the end of the week. This one was a base of romaine, spinach, and hidden broccoli sprouts which I piled high with grape tomatoes, two fried eggs, “grilled” portobello mushroom, and lots citrusy bean dip (in order to finish the container). I grilled the mushrooms in a sandwich maker, and it worked surprisingly well (though no grill marks), I’m glad I had that idea. It helped that the mushrooms happened to be bread slice sized to start with.

2009_05_22_dinner

And another idea I’m glad I had produced a lovely dessert I’m enjoy right now. Stash Goji Berry Green Tea + gelatin + agave nectar = wiggly jiggly goodness. This might become my go-to summer dessert, it’s pretty awesome. I started out by mixing the agave with the tea + gelatin, but the jello didn’t taste very sweet after it had set. So I mashed up the jello a little with my spoon and stirred in a drizzle more of agave, which gives the perfect amount of sweetness surrounding each bit. Next time, I’ll skip the agave in the jello and just add it at the end. I’d love to get my hands on some coconut chai to make jello out of, that sounds really good to me.

2009_05_22_jello

And I’m planning on a bit of chocolate later, Green and Black’s Milk Chocolate to be exact.

2009_05_22_chocolate

Unfortunately, it looks like I’m going to have to sit out of this week’s BSI over at Say Yes to Salad, I can’t find kabocha ANYWHERE! I’ll have to try one more time tomorrow and go up to Whole Foods.  I did puchase (what I hope will be) a pretty awesome new food though.  But you have to wait til tomorrow to see it 🙂

 

Brought to you by the letter… May 17, 2009

B!  I noticed an unintentional theme to today while going back through my photos, beets, banana, beans, berries, bagel, balsalmic…  I seemed to be going through a certain section of the dictionary and eating all edible entries!

Let’s start off with another letter B, BSI: Bananas, courtsey of Lara at Thinspired. For breakfast this morning I fixed myself a beautiful bowl Banana Breakfast Pudding, which I originally accidentally made here. The recipe is simple, one banana, 1/3 package (~1/2 cup) soft silken tofu, 2-3 T water, and 1/3 cup oatmeal. Immersion blender, plus toppings = delicious 🙂

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Though I would like to add a note that the quick cooking oats I used the first time blended more smoothly than the old-fashioned kind I used today. And my toppings of choice were raspberries and honeydew, sweet and summery.

2009_05_17_breakfast

For lunch I did a bit of chopping and trimming and came up with a fresh and flavourful salad of steamed green beans and beet root dressing with yogurt, apple cider vinegar, and tarragon. And on the side were two apricots that I picked up this morning, simply because they amused me in their extreme pointyness and non-fuzzyness (that are unfortunately a bit lost in the 2D photo). They were surprisingly too, apparently they’re “the first of the season”.

2009_05_17_lunch

In the afternoon I snacked on half a bagel spread with strawberry, blackberry, and acai jam.

2009_05_17_bagel

And a piece of chocolate. Cocoa Camino is awesome chocolate, but they could have added a few more (and larger) nut and berry pieces. Though the full size bar might have larger chunks in it, I may have to investigate that some time.

2009_05_17_chocolate

I was especially excited for dinner today after buying the beets in the morning. I usually don’t buy beets, because later in the summer I can easily get my fill for free from the parent’s garden, plus typically, I don’t even eat the root (that’s what compost piles are for, right?), just the greens, and grocery store beets tend to have pathetic greens. But today, I found a giant pile of beets sitting in the organic produce section with lots of BEAUTIFUL greens, and before I could even think about it, I found a bunch in my basket!

So for dinner tonight I sauteed the greens with sweet onion, tofu, olive oil, and a giant handful of parsley, thyme, and sage. Plus I pan “grilled” a portabello mushroom with balsamic vinegar and topped it with herbed goat cheese and tomato slices. Best dinner in a long time, the beet greens were so good!

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And I did a even did a good job of trimming up my bountiful window herb garden. It’s grown a bit in the past three weeks, hadn’t it? I’ve even been cutting away at it before today…

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And now for what will surely be a good Desperate Housewives finale, and getting ready to NOT go to work tomorrow, yay!