Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

Cocoa Bean Bonanza July 26, 2009

Breakfast this morning was a simple bowl of snow peas, (particularly delicious) raspberries, and carrot filled with hemp nut butter and sprinkled with dulse.  Mmmm, dulse.

2009_07_26_breakfast

Lunch was a pretty fantastic salad.  I tossed a couple slices of cubed ShaSha Co. Ezekiel bread with orange juice concentrate, lemon thyme and finely julienned beets (my fingers came out the other side fully intact :)).  Then I served the mixture on a bed of red leaf lettuce and topped it with Marti cheese shavings.

2009_07_26_lunch

Then in the afternoon I had a bit of fun.  You know that cacao-date paste I made yesterday?  And the almonds that didn’t turn into almond milk?  Well I ground the almonds into a butter, mixed it with the date-cacao paste, shaped the mixture into balls and threw them into the freezer.

2009_07_26_filling

Then I went out and bought a bar of President’s Choice Organic 70% dark chocolate.  And melted it.

2009_07_26_melting

After a bit of dipping, rolling, and some chilling in the freezer I ended up with these rather wonderful little truffles.  The white is just condensation since I had just taken them out for the picture.

2009_07_26_truffles

I also used up the little bit of extra chocolate to roll some frozen banana chunks for a snack.  You know, along with licking the spoon and quality control checks and so forth.

2009_07_26_banana

Then, to add to the cocoa bean bonanaza I cooked up a HUGE pot of legumes.  I boiled 1/2 cup each pintos, chickpeas, adzuki, and black beans (which got their own pot to avoid dying everything else).  Then tossed the beans with a bag (~1 cup) each of thawed peas and asparagus from the freezer, a couple scoops of the pesto I made yesterday (maybe 3 T), the zest from a lemon and a lime, juice from half the lime, a pinch of salt, and a handful of parsley.  That big mess made one very large, very tasty bean salad.

2009_07_26_beans

You maybe wondering what I’m going to do with a whole plate of truffles and a ton of beans.  Well my former roommate and her then boyfriend-now husband are about to move to England for grad school, so we’re doing one last dinner and Settlers game night before they disappear.  I’m told there will be soup, and other people are bringing unknown items.  So I’m off for the night, but I’m bringing my camera 🙂

By the way, sometimes you can find smiles in the most unusual of places.  When I went on a mission to go buy chocolate this morning, I also found three bunches of marked down (but still very nice looking) organic bananas, which I hastily added to my basket for freezing purposes.  As I was leaving the grocery store there was a giant, thunderous down pour, and even with an umbrella, I (and everyone on the street at the time) ended up with soaked pants/socks/shoes/shirts/bags.  When I got closer to home, I passed by a homeless man standing on the sidewalk, holding out his hat.  But instead of asking for spare change, I heard “Spare ticket to Maui?”  He made me smile, and while I generally don’t carry cash, I came home with only two bunches of bananas, and he seemed happy.

 

Southern Hemi Influence July 8, 2009

This morning started out with a tried and true monster combo, spinach, chia seeds, banana, and papaya.

2009_07_08_monster

For lunch I had yet another salad mess with asparagus, zucchini, red pepper, carrot, beet, avocado, and the rest of my nectarine, balsamic, and tarragon dressing.

2009_07_08_salad

Which was followed by a cinnamon raisin ezekiel sandwich stuffed with an awesome PB2, dried apricot, cinnamon and maple flake filling.

2009_07_08_sandwich

And in the afternoon I snacked on the rest of my mulberries.

2009_07_08_mulberries

Then for dinner I was craving something weird (for the season), orange. So I stopped by the grocery store and picked up a clementine which probably came from WAY south of the equator and used it to top a beet green salad which was dressed with sesame oil and orange juice concentrate. And along that I had a tower pile of steamed broccoli and a tiny beet topped with raw mole. And the whole plate got a sprinkling of sesame seeds to make it look a bit prettier.

2009_07_08_dinner

And dessert, dark chocolate!

2009_07_08_chocolate

 

Mini-Monsoon July 6, 2009

When I got to work this morning we were sad to discover our field trip was to be delayed till later this week because it was “a mini monsoon” up north (my boss’ words) and they had in fact stopped construction for the day. So instead of discovering new physical territory today, I only discovered a new tasty protein powder. My morning green monster contained chia seeds, half a banana, brazil nut milk, Strawberry Spirutein, and a bunch of spinach. It literally tasted like CANDY. It’s pretty sweet, so it’s not something I’m planning on drinking it every day (not that I do that with protein powder anyways) but it’s nice to know about if I want something that’s more of a treat.

2009_07_06_monster

For lunch I fixed a fantastic salad mess of asparagus, carrot, zucchini, avocado, and chives dressed in a mixture of tahini and lemon juice. Love that dressing.

2009_07_06_salad

And lunch dessert was strawberries, raspberries, and CHu. I loved that by lunchtime, the CHu had “melted” and coated all the fruit perfectly (and deliciously!).

2009_07_06_berries

And later in the afternoon I dug into a Key Lime Pie Larabar. I think this a serious contender for my favourite Larabar flavour, YUM! And as you can see, I was in a bit of a rush leaving this morning, so I grabbed my keys, metropass, and larabar all in one feel swoop and didn’t bother taking the time to put the other stuff down to snap a picture. Which also led to me forgetting about hiding my mangled finger, but at least you don’t have to see the other side.

2009_07_06_larabar

For dinner I cooked up another salmon filet, this time with sesame oil, orange juice concentrate, and dill, then ate it on a bed of red leaf lettuce and tomato, with the excess pan juice as dressing, delicious.

2009_07_06_salmon

Then for dessert I was informed by the roomie that I must try a Dare Cocoa Chocolate Chip Cookie bar, and since he so kindly provided me with one, I did. Oh my goodness yummy! It’s a good thing I don’t have a whole box of them, because I can see them being seriously addictive.

2009_07_06_cookie

 

Do The Dew June 12, 2009

So I finished my giant honeydew today. In two parts, to start the day, and to finish it. This morning I discovered a pretty awesomely fantastic green monster combo, honeydew, a few lychees, spinach and chia seeds. So, so good!

2009_06_12_monster

To work I brought a sald of julienned zucchini, cucumber, and carrot tossed in one of my favourite dressings that hasn’t seen the light of day in a long while, orange juice concentrate, sesame oil, salt and pepper. And a devil dawg patty on the side.

2009_06_12_lunch

When I got home from work in the afternoon my stomach was rumbling for a snack so I filled it up with a super ripe banana, All bran and soy milk.

2009_06_12_cereal

And this carton disappeared while I worked on finally catching up with my Google Reader.

2009_06_12_blueberries

Then for dinner I was feeling super lazy so went pantry diving for something quick I picked up a while ago from the mark-down rack because the packages were slightly dented.

2009_06_12_chili

I added water to the PC Instant Vegetarian Chili and microwaved with I took a peeler to a zucchini and came up with this super tasty plate for dinner. The chili was a bit spicy for me but turned surprisingly good after I added a small drizzle of molasses to take the edge off, and it can’t get any easier or faster. Plus while I do like making my own too, I do appreciate not having to eat chili now for the next week. I’m glad I have a few more of those up on the shelf.

2009_06_12_dinner

Along side there was a couple of slices of multigrain bread nabbed from the roomie, and for dessert, the rest of the honeydew. Yum.

2009_06_12_bread

2009_06_12_honeydew

 

So Complicated June 4, 2009

I discovered today that my weekend is about to get complicated, but for a slightly fun reason. I get to do a track level inspection at a subway station. At 2am Sunday morning when the subway stops running -.-, because being electrocuted by the third rail while dragging a metal chain around and hammering at concrete is NOT fun. So I need to play with my sleep schedule a bit in the coming days…good thing I’ve had experience, being an engineering student and all.

My breakfast this morning have a sunny tropical theme, pina colada green monster! In the mix is kale, chia seeds, Nutribiotics plain rice protein, a little banana, pineapple, and a sprinkle of coconut. Hit the spot.

2009_06_04_monster

For lunch I made more progress on the bunch of celery sitting in the fridge by chopping it with some cucumber to make a salad bed. The toppings were black beans, avocado, salsa, lime juice, and yogurt. I’m out of peppers and carrots *tear*.

2009_06_04_lunch

There was also a pita and half a Maple Nut Clif bar.

2009_06_04_pita

And cherries!

2009_06_04_cherries

For dinner I look in the seemingly mono-coloured fridge and fixed a boston lettuce salad topped with cucumber, avocado, and black beans. Plus a slash of orange in the form of juice concentrate from the freezer and a little raspberry red wine vinegar.

2009_06_04_dinner

And for dessert I’m taking this bowl of dried fruit salad with me for SYTYCD viewing, pineapple, peach, medjool, blueberries, and cherry flavoured craisins. And probably The Listener as well since I got sucked into it last night after unexpectedly seeing it was filmed in Toronto (Colm Feore in Trinity College = awesome!).

2009_06_04_fruit

 

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.

2009_04_17_cereal

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.

2009_04_17_salad

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.

2009_04_17_fruit

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.

2009_04_17_smoothie

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)

2009_04_17_bsi

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.

2009_04_17_dinner

2009_04_17_close

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!

2009_04_17_cookies

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.

2009_04_16_breakfast

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.

2009_04_16_fruit

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

2009_04_16_veggies

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.

2009_04_16_bun

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.

2009_04_16_ingredients

A sweet and creamy combination.

2009_04_16_monster

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.

2009_04_16_pickle