A Day in the Kitchen

Well first off, I want to say how impressed I am no one chewed my head off for counting calories again! Everyone understood my personal need to “check-in” on how I’m doing with maintaining my weight loss. That’s why I love you all :) For the record, it’s not entirely to track the number of calories I’m eating, as I’m pretty sure I’ve done a decent job at keeping that steady. But I want to take a look at how much sugar I’m having, and how I’m doing with protein. Plus, I’m a nerd and get a kick out of seeing the numbers sometimes :P

Moving on! I have a ton of food photos so I’m going to skip over the morning food.I did however make it to my favourite step class. I don’t know what was up today, but I was feeling kinda “meh” about it. I got that vibe from the whole class. I just wasn’t in the mood for jumping over a bench for an hour. Too bad I didn’t figure that out until I started! Oh well.

I made up for it with a noon-hour yoga class. Yes, I like to spend my days off doing exercise classes :P It was a 45-minute BodyFlow class and it was juuuust right. I’m really happy I committed to doing yoga three days a week this month. I love it so much more when I do it often!

I must share my lunch, as it featured my version of a “crack wrap.”

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Crack pita ;) Sabra red pepper hummus, swiss cheese on a whole wheat pita toated in a frying pan. And yes, it is so good, it’s just like crack.

On the side I had my leftover roasted tofu and veggies on top of spinach and tomatoes. I’m a volume eater, so the spinach made my plate look more full :)

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Aalllll together now!

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Yum! Such a treat to eat a hot lunch. I can only have cold ones when I’m at work. 

Work lunches don’t often include dessert either.

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80% chocolate seems to be juuuust right for me. 90% is too intense, and 70% is too bland. The best thing about the dark stuff is you don’t even need a whole square to satisfy that sweet tooth.

My afternoon was then spent in the kitchen!

First up: Pumpkin Spice Roasted Chickpeas.

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I’ve been hearing amaaaazing things about these all around the blogosphere. I don’t know what I was expecting, but these just tasted like chickpeas to me (duh). Clearly I need to quadruple the cinnamon in every recipe :P

Next up were some of Seth’s Low-Fat Chocolate Muffins:

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I haven’t tried these yet, but I’m a little wary. I never screw with baking recipes, because I don’t really know the first thing about baking. But I subbed out the sugar and cocoa in this recipe for chocolate protein powder, left out the applesauce and added 1 tbsp ground flax. I also accidentally overcooked them because I was busy snacking and forgot about them. I’ll let you know how they turned out tomorrow!

Oh, but what was I snacking on? A persimmon! 

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Kinda looks like a tomato, but it’s actually a sweet fruit. I’ve been seeing a lot of these on blogs lately as well. I believe it’s because they’re in season, also why they were on sale at the grocery store (Sobey’s).

I had no idea what to expect when I cut into it, or how to eat it. So I just sliced it up and ate the whole thing!

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I would say it’s like a firmer, milder peach. Apparently you’re not supposed to eat the skin, but I thought it tasted good! It was a little tough, like a mango’s (but I’ll eat mango skins too). I think this one was just slightly under ripe, as it was quite crispy like an apple in the center, and then really soft like a peach towards the outside. Overall, downright delicious!! I hope they’re still on sale – I want more! :)

Then it was back to the kitchen for my third and final dish of the day – chili!! Probably one of my favourite meals ever, and my first batch of the season. I eat a lot of chilis, soups, stews, etc, in the winter.

Typically, I like to do fun recipes for chili, but I wanted my first batch to be old-school. So I just winged it.

 

Thick n’ Spicy Moo-Beef Chili

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  • 1 spanish onion, chopped
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 lb extra-lean ground beef
  • 1 jalapeño pepper, minced
  • 1 14 oz can red kidney beans
  • 1 14 oz can black beans (I used the Eden Organic no-salt kind for both beans)
  • 1 28 oz can diced tomatoes (again, organic no-salt kind)
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (I used Frank’s)
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 tbsp unpacked brown sugar

Sautee the onion and green pepper until slightly soft, then add beef and jalapeño. I did this in my pot because it’s giant and has a wide bottom. Then stir in the rest of the ingredients and let simmer for 45-60 minutes.

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This is my first real-beef chili since childhood! (hence the name) It tastes so different, even from turkey. It’s definitely thick and meaty. A “man’s” chili if you will ;) 

Well, I know it’s Flashback Friday and all, but I’m going to have to skip this week. My bedtime is quickly approaching (work at 5am tomorrow!) and I still have this to deal with:

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Yes, that’s the size of my whole kitchen. Enough counter space for one cutting board. At least it’s less surface to keep sanitized! (and no mops required, floor can be hand-scrubbed in 5 minutes ;) )

Hope you’re all getting a wonderful start to your weekend!!

 

Question of the Day: Do you prefer cooking or baking? I definitely feel more in my element making meals. Add some flour or sugar to the mix and I get totally lost!

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Posted on November 13, 2009, in Fun, Workouts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 27 Comments.

  1. Dang, that is a tiny kitchen! At least there is only 1 of you :D

    I love to bake. Actually I love any kind of cooking, but I seem to have a real knack for baked goods. I don’t do them as often as I would love to. It really takes time to tweak baked recipes to make them healthier and still taste good.

    That chili looks yummy, too! Have a great day at work!

  2. ummm i might need to hop on the persimmon train! and if it makes you feel better, my kitchen is even smaller :)

    yay for baking…i love both, but baking is so much more tasty in the end!

    good luck at work tomorrow! you are almost there!

  3. “The best thing about the dark stuff is you don’t even need a whole square to satisfy that sweet tooth.”
    I tell this to people, even posted it once, and got so many you’re fibbing, you ate the whole thing kinda commetns, i dont even bother anymore. But i totally agree!

    Cinnamon…good tip b/c I love cinn too and if you need 4x then so would I. If I want hubs to help me eat them, they cannot taste like regular chickpeas, i need to amp em up. Thx for the 411.

    Persimmons….never had one. I know, how lame. But im honest.

    Baking. Unbaking, for sure. You really cannot screw up raw vegan baking i tell people although others disagree LOL

    • Averie, maybe I just need to try my hand at more raw desserts. I could be a genius raw “baker” and not even know it ;) Your cookie dough balls are my next victims!

  4. I really need to find a persimmon this weekend. I have been seeing them on tons of blogs and am so curious about them!

    I’m a way better baker than chef. My meals are boring and basic, but I love baking! Especially for other people, whenever I like a guy I bake him cookies. I am 12.

  5. I prefer cooking because I am more involved in the process. I hate that with baking, you mix shit together and then cross your fingers and hope for the best. At least with cooking you can monitor and make adjustments as necessary and taste it along the way.

  6. Your lunch looks amazing! I’m a total volume eater, too :) You certainly had a productive day in the kitchen! Your creations look great, and I really need to try a persimmon. I’ve never had one!

    Baking used to terrify me! I’m getting better at it, but the whole precise ratios thing freaked me out. I like cooking because I like throwing things together and not worrying about specific measurements ;)

  7. Funny! I’ve tried making fancy chickpeas and they always just taste like…chickpeas to me too! I bought some dried chickpeas and I want to see what happens to them in the Vita mix! :-)

    Your crack wrap looks amazing. Any bread item toasted on a frying pan gets my vote!

    Love a small kitch- as you said so much less to CLEAN!

    I am happy either baking or cooking. Cooking seems easier and faster. But some days I just feel like licking a bowl, and those days call for baking :-)

    Deb

  8. I love to bake, but I’m really bad at following directions so cooking is a little safer!

    http://eatventures.wordpress.com

  9. I’m loving that crack wrap lunch- YUM! :D

  10. I love to cook and bake. Although, baking has always come easier to me.

  11. I used to like baking, but now I love cooking more, because I don’t really like baked goods, and it isn’t as fun when you don’t like what you produce. lol.

    Your chickpeas look and sound fabulous, and PERSIMMON! One of my fave fruits! Have you tried the soft ones, that you dig in with your spoon? I remember mentioning it once to someone, I just forgot who!

    • Sophia, no I haven’t! This was my first experience with them. Although, reading up on them, I saw that there were different kinds of persimmon and I think I got the most common variety found in North America. I will have to keep my eyes peeled for other kinds – I’m in love! :)

  12. I like baking. I like stirring things together, putting it in the oven, and chilling for half an hour while the oven does all the work!

    Sandwiches/pitas are always at least 90% better grilled. True story. I’ve actually heard of grilled PB&J lately, and I really want to try that…

  13. i’m a cooker – i usually only bake when i have access to a huge kitchen but otherwise i’m all about the box baking…

  14. I’m more of a lurker than commenter, but had to chim in on this post.

    I think your persimmon was just right. It is made of two different textures. If it wasn’t ripe you would figure it out, because when you eat unripened persimmons you can get a think layer of something gross on your tongue (I know, disgusting). But seriously, you would stop eating it after just one bite.

    Oh and as someone suggested you should try the soft ones if you find them!

    • Hi Barbara! Fist, thanks for de-lurking, and secondly, thanks for chiming in! :) I remember reading now that unripe persimmons were very unpalatable. Although, I wasn’t quite picturing *that* :P I actually didn’t mind the crunchy texture, but you’ve just solidified that I must find this soft variety!

  15. Look at you little chef! I prefer cooking because I can do it every day, but I love baking too–only baking is more of a special occasion things. Have a GREAT weekend! xoxo

  16. Are persimmons different from sharon fruit? I thought they were the same, but was in the store and they had both- the persimmons were larger, but otherwise looked identical. I have only had sharon fruit, but always ate the skin.

    Let me know how the muffins turn out- I have some chocolate protein powder here just begging to be used :D

    Cooking V baking- used to be cooking, but now I HATE it. No idea why. Stresses me out and I am too impatient for stuff to cook while I stand over the stove. Baking I *like* but am not very good at it!

    YEAH crack wraps…even when not followed with a ‘wassssaaaaaaaaaaaa’-p :P

    • Ellie, when I was looking up info on perimmons, they were also listed as Sharon fruit. I think it may be just a different variety? There seems to be a lot of them.

      P.S. As a heads up, I tried a muffin last night and they were really dry, probably because I skipped the applesauce and overcooked them. They also weren’t as “decadent” as I was hoping. Chocolate protein powder isn’t a good replacer for cocoa powder, maybe better as an “addition” on top of everything else. Each muffin does have 7g of protein though! :)

  17. Your chili looks and sounds delicious. You probably know that I have a thing for chili.

    90% dark is hard core! I don’t think I’ve ever tried it. 85% is the darkest I’ve ever gone ;)

    I’m with you on the small kitchen. Matt and I call it our Barbie Kitchen :)

  18. P.S. Totally forgot–I prefer cooking :) I think because I like to eat “regular” foods more than baked goods!

  19. I like both! Maybe baking because I do it less

  20. Your lunch is everything I love on a plate! Feel free to ship me any extras ;)

    I love all of your cooking adventures! Friday seems to be the day to kick it in the kitch!

    BAKING! I need specific, step by step instructions/ingredients otherwise I get all nervous and things don’t turn out well.

  21. i just want you to know that your blog is the first i am reading in my marathon catchup! one down.. 300 posts to go :) i loved the version of a crack wrap and i have been wanting to try those roasted garbz myself, i hope your muffins turned out. and i LOVE the chili! i was thinking yesterday that i wanted to make a big batch.

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