Plentiful Plants

Daily eats of a Torontonian student

Blend, Baby, Blend and an Impromtu Contest! July 17, 2009

It was so dark out today! Whenever I went to take a picture, the sun was very well hidden, and it kept threatening to start raining (spitting) but never quite came. Or I may have simple changed locations before the rain actually came in some cases.

Anyways, a blender action shot for breakfast. That monster contained a mango, chia seeds, and a whole lot of collard greens.

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For lunch I had a salad mess containing cucumber, asparagus, carrot, red pepper and tomato with a Peach Bourbon BBQ sauce topping.

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And in the afternoon half a pint of raspberries and a banana dissappeared.

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I went to Whole Foods today for the first time in a couple of months, and spent some time browsing, which resulted me in sending too much money, but ending up with lots of fun new things to try. One of those things was a hunk of Marti cheese, which is a raw ewe’s milk cheese that to me tastes kinda like a cross between parmesan and muenster (aka pretty awesome). I used it as a topping for my dinner, a big bowl of blended soup containing zucchini, carrot, lots of red pepper, a couple small dates, thyme, sage, salt, pepper, and olive oil.

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And some honeydew for dessert.

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Another Whole Food purchase that I just tried is Stash Mint green tea powder. It’s made of regular tea leaves that are ground superfine so they dissolve instantly in cold water for iced tea. Unfortunately, I’m really not a fan, I even dumped out the rest of that glass. Though to be honest, I probably should have known I wouldn’t like it given my distaste for matcha green tea. So if you do like matcha, I say give it try, you’ll probably love it 🙂

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So how about a quick, impromptu mini contest? If you do like matcha, or are just curious, leave a comment by Sunday night and I’ll randomly choose 3 people to mail a few packets of Stash Mint Green Tea Powder. I’d like to see some of you readers come out of the woodwork!

 

Leftovers Galore July 14, 2009

This morning started out with a sweet and tasty green monster. In the mix was lots of kale, a banana, nectarine, and chia seeds.

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For lunch I repeated my lunch from yesterday (I just made extra yesterday), with a salad mess of broccoli, zucchini, asparagus, red pepper, and a hemp nut butter/lemon/mustard dressing.

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I had the most wonderful snack, a fresh batch of oatgurt with a peach and a tiny drizzle of maple syrup. Absolutely delicious. And you can tell there are definitely bacteria growing when the lid of the container you put your snack in is puffing out when you go to open it in the afternoon. I’m counting on them being good bacteria considering they haven’t made me sick yet 🙂

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For dinner I used the rest of my sprouted amaranth mixed with tahini and lemon juice to make a tabouli type deal with parsley, sage, tomato, and carrot. It’s really good, plus there are even more leftovers for lunch tomorrow!

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And cherries for dessert.

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Where has the week gone? July 3, 2009

This week felt like it flew by!  First I had Wednesday off, then Thursday I left the office to do some quick work at a subway station, which meant I got home really early, then today was the normal summer hours half day!  I guess I’ll make up for it by working Saturday night (Boo!).  It’s actually not that bad, kinda fun, but it does feel like it destroys the weekend a little bit.  But then Monday is a field trip to see a bridge in Huntsville!  Aside from the freeway up to Montreal a couple of times, and one road trip to Sault St. Marie via Tobermory 10 years ago (then back via Michigan), I’ve never been to any part of Ontario north of Toronto, so to me, Algonquin Park is considered WAY up north (keep in mind that Toronto is already ~100km north of where I grew up).  You know, as opposed to WAY WAY up north by Hudson Bay where nobody lives (apparently there’s a Polar Bear Provincial Park?) or even just Thunder Bay.

Anyway, on the the eats (I just spent forever being distracted by Google Maps!)  Breakfast this morning, I used another one of those super dark plums, along with blueberries, half a banana, chia seeds, and a big handful of kale in a tasty little green monster (I brought the rest to drink at work)

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I also brought part one of lunch to work with me, broccoli, cucumber and baked kabocha drizzled with Ted Reader Peach Bourbon BBQ sauce.  Delicious.

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When I got home I was hungry for lunch part 2, chia oatgurt with a spoonful of PB2.

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Then lunch dessert/snacks, the last two Pumpkin Pie Bites.

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And a sweet, juicy, super-ripe peach

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For dinner I cleaned out the fridge with a GIANT salad containing the last of the lettuce and aspargus my parents brought me, cucumber, red pepper, chives, and the leftover tomato/avocado suace from yesterday.  And I’m pleased to report the mandoline was playing nicely today.

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And to really clean out the fridge, I also finished the kabocha and broccoli, with a bit more BBQ sauce.

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Just say no! July 2, 2009

To recreational slicing!…but that part comes last.

It was dark and dreary when I got up this morning so my pictures aren’t so nice, but I started the day with a tasty shot of wheatgrass juice with a big squeeze of lime.

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As well as a bowl of chia oatgurt with the leftover raw strawberry jam I made yesterday.

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For lunch I brought a mini, super strength green monster (less water than usual) of kale and peach.

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And some kabocha with ketchup.

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Plus some Pumpkin Pie Bites. I had two, the rest were for sharing.

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When I got home I got myself into trouble.  I bought a mandoline slicer yesterday, but had to go back to exchange it this afternoon because 2/3 pieces in the box were missing.  So when I brought it home today, I was excited to try it out.  I managed to do a very nice job of julienning zucchini, but then I went to far.  I was going to blend some tomatoes, but I wanted to see how well the mandoline would do slicing them.  So just for fun I started slicing.  It wasn’t particularly easy due to the thick skin and non-serrated mandoline blade, but it was working well enough.  Then I was a bit too forceful and slipped and sliced into two of my finger tips!  The ironic thing was that I was using the handguard.  A few minutes before hand, I was very slowly, feeding the last slice of zucchini through without the guard, and my roomie warned me to be careful, but it wasn’t until I switched back to using the safety device I hurt myself!  I’ll spare you picture, but let’s just say washing my hair tonight it going to be tricky, a one handed affair.

So I was starving, but I wanted to wait for the bleeding to stop before proceeding with dinner preparatations, so I started off with the Starbucks Raspberry Peach yogurt parfait that was hanging out in the fridge.

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A while later I finished making my real dinner.  I came up with this in my head way before seeing Gena’s post yesterday, but it’s so tasty it deserves a shoutout, plus Guacanara is a pretty fantastic name.  I blended two tomatoes (kumatos!) and an avocado with a few sprigs each of rosemary, thyme, and sage from my window garden.  So, so good!

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Did anyone else notice the green/red pattern throughout the day like I just did?

 

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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Herb Overload June 3, 2009

I started my day with something a little bit different this morning. Pizza! My breakfast pizza featured an egg white crust, a little jarred pasta sauce, fresh sage, and a piece of Balderson 2 year old cheddar. It was very tasty after I removed some sage, that fresh stuff sure is strong!

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Accompanying my pizza was a small bowl of Kashi Flakes and Granola cereal with soy milk and banana.

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For lunch I fixed up a salad mess with celery, carrot, red pepper, black beans, yogurt, chives, and parsley. And I managed to assualt my taste buds again with a little too much parsley combined with the strongly flavoured outer ribs of a bunch of celery. Whoa! Along side the crunchy salad was a pita.

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Lunch dessert was a repeat from yesterday, cherries and cukes.

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In the afternoon my tastebuds recovered from a savoury overload with an awesometastic Coconut Cream Pie Larabar. I’ve never seen this flavour in stores before, so when I noticed it I grabbed one based on many other blogger’s raves about it. OH MY WORD it is GOOD! So soft and creamy and coconutty!

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For dinner I didn’t feel like cooking, and went a super simple route. Peanut butter, banana, and honey pita sandwich.  And I felt like a kid again.  Vegetables, what are those?

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Fruit Infusion May 28, 2009

I went a little bit crazy last night when I got up in the midle of the night and opened my window for some fresh air. Because when I woke up this morning my room was cold and dark and there was rain pouring outside (but not inside, because my window only opens a crack). Let’s just say, all plans for a green monster were quickly abandoned. But my breakfast was still nice and colourful, and the vita-mix still came in handy :-). I drew inspiration from Heather and cooked some oat bran, then blended it with kale, pumpkin pie spice, and a banana. Then topped the oats with a spoonful of coconut. And it was delicious, of course.

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Then I went a bit fruit crazy while preparing my lunch and snack. For lunch I fixed up a giant salad of spring mix topped with carrot, cucumber,red pepper, and a whole pile of mango. I was really enjoying the forkfuls of pepper and mango left at the end.

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For a snack I had an Ambrosia apple with raspberries, blueberries, and blackberries. Then I also had a few Kashi crackers offered to me by the cubicle-mate. They were supposed to be Honey Sesame, but they must have missed the powdering step at the manufacturing plants, because they were just plain, though still tasty.

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When I got home I was really hungry so I quickly grabbed small bowlful of Dorset Fruits, Nuts, and Seeds Cereal.

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For dinner I drew inspiration for this morning’s Hungry Girl email. I steamed a pile of asparagus and a salmon filet with lemon, and topped it with yogurt, lemon, and sage, then rolled it up in a tortilla. Absolutely wonderful wrap. Plus I had a Zucchini Spelt Muffin (the last one :() for dessert.

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And I can’t believe I didn’t know So You Think You Can Dance was on last night and missed it! At least I’ll make up for it by enjoying it even more tonight.

 

Dippity-Do-Dah May 18, 2009

It was a dippity-do-day. And a wonderful lounge-y day.

This morning I leisurely made a batch of Raspberry Cornmeal Pancakes from ED&BV for my roomie and I, and we both loved them. They were especially good topped with his uncle’s maple syrup

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For lunch I whipped up the first dip of the day, and made up citrus bean dip. It contained the dredges of my bags of chickpeas, kidney beans, and a few pintos to up the volume (~1.5 cups total after cooking). Then I added the juice of 4 sad little limes that have been drying up on the counter, and a pathetic looking orange that might have started growing a little bit of fuzz on the outside, plus a handful of thyme, a bit of sage, and a sprig of rosemary (that wasn’t large enough to actually taste). It turned out to be a pretty good dip. I scooped it up with red and yellow pepper strips, carrot, cucumber, and steamed broccoli. And lunch dessert was a side of honeydew melon.

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In the afternoon I snacked on a couple of the best tasting yogurts ever (that I’ve tried so far, having no access to crazy american brands). And I ended up eating the last two pancakes leftover from breakfast too, reheated in the toaster (but no repeat pic).

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The pancakes might have ruined my appetite for dinner a little, so I just sat down to a plate of steamed cauliflower and a tomato paired with dip number two of the day. A mashed avocado mixed with lemon juice and some massamun curry paste, deliciously creamy.

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And now I need to pack a lunch and head to bed soon so I can get up EARLY to go to a training session that will allow me to wander around subway tunnels without getting electrocuted by the third rail 🙂

 

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.

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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”.

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

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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.

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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!

 

Scuffy new shoes May 13, 2009

I did a very thorough job of scuffing up a brand new pair of shoes today.  I bought my work boots four years ago and didn’t end up needed them at the time.  So this morning, when I got to go on site for the first time, my shoes were still shiny and perfect.  Not so much anymore…spending a few hours crawling around scaffolding hammering at the roof will do a quick job of scratching up the toes of steel-toed boots.  But had fun doing it 🙂  There’s even the bonus that I got to leave home over an hour before I usually do, and got back an hour earlier too because a big chunk of my commute was cut away and our working hours were a bit shorter to allow for travel time for some people from the office to the site.

In anticipation of a busy, and different kind of workday I enjoyed a leisurely and large breakfast.  I started with a bowl of Kashi High Fibre Flakes and Granola cereal with strawberries and milk.

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Then I dug into two sunnyside up eggs topped with chopped sage, and paired with orange pepper strip.  Delicious, and held me over very well until lunch.

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Lunch I fixed up a  mess salad of broccoli, zucchini, and chicken breast tossed in yogurt, whole grain dijon, and a handful of chives.  Tasty and refreshing, as usual.

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Plus I had a Nature’s Path Optimum Energy Peanut Butter Bar.  The bar was really good, kind of like a peanut butter cookie, but less sweet (which is a good thing).  I would have liked it if the peanut flavour was a bit stronger, but it was tasty regardless.

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When I got home I finished my lunch salad with the addition of a handful of dried cherries (and didn’t take a picture, sorry).

Then when I was hungry for dinner I stared in the fridge indescisively for a while, then finally blended up a slighty disgusting looking but very tasty brown monster.  In the mix was red kale, an apple, and frozen raspberries.

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Followed by a Starbucks Peach and Raspberry Yogurt Parfait.  Apparently they’ve stopped using Splenda to sweeten their yogurts…

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And finally for dessert was a square of dark chocolate.  Talk about a weird food mood….

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