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A Frittata For Your Thoughts

Happy Sunday!

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As I lay in bed this morning thinking about food, as I am wont to do, I realized we had the makings of a great frittata sitting in the fridge as leftovers.

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Have you ever made frittata before? I used to make them all the time during my weight loss days. One giant slice is usually low in calories and high in protein.

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All you have to do is pick the veggies you want as the filling, sauté them with whatever spices you like, turn the heat down, then pour an egg/milk mixture over the veggies in the pan. How many eggs you use depends on the size of your pan, but a medium pan is generally 6-8 eggs. I like to use buttermilk or yogurt instead of milk sometimes too to make the eggs fluffy.

From there you let the eggs “set” on medium-low heat for about 10 minutes. Until the edges are solid, but still liquid in the middle. Sprinkle cheese on top, wrap the pan’s handle in tinfoil if it’s not cast iron, and stick the whole thing under the broiler for about 3-5 minutes.

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Today’s mix included potato, mini portobellos, corn, green onion, smoked paprika, and goat yogurt instead of milk. Sprinkled with old cheddar on top. A nice surprise for my dad and sister to wake up to this morning!

Instead of yammering on today, I want to ask you for some feedback. I have never done this before and I find myself increasingly curious about it. For new and old readers alike, what brings you to my blog? What about this blog in particular keeps you coming back? What are some of your favourite topics? Are there any other topics you’d like to see featured more often? I’m a big girl, I can handle constructive criticism. Please comment below, leave a note on my Facebook page, tell me on Twitter, or pop me an e-mail at thegreatbalancingact@gmail.com. Thank you!!

Frankly Eatery, Frankly Delicious

Happy Waffle Wednesday!

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Did you know I’ve been celebrating Waffle Wednesday for almost a year and a half now? Traditions like this one are just too good to give up.

Today’s waffle isn’t your typical sweet and fruity one. These days, I wake up wanted savoury. Eggs. Cheese. Bacon.

  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup unflavoured soy protein powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 stevia packet
  • 1/4 cup egg whites
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 2 slices bacon, chopped (I use chicken bacon because it’s cheaper, not necessarily because healthier)

Cook your bacon in a frying pan while whisking together the other ingredients. Add the cooked bacon bits to the batter and waffle away!

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I topped mine with low-fat Philadelphia spinach cream cheese. Again, not because it’s necessarily “healthier.” It was on sale. I like it!

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Forget cupcakes, this is one manly waffle ;)

While we’re on the the topic of brunch foods, I have something I need to say.

Listen, I know I am biased, but I truly believe I live in the best brunch neighbourhood in Toronto.

Those of you living outside the tee-dot may not understand what a bold statement this really is.

I live in a city obsessed with brunch. Every single restaurant touts a special brunch menu. Line-ups spill into the streets on weekends between 10 and 2. In Toronto, a restaurant is only has good as its brunch.

In Leslieville, my ‘hood, you can throw a rock in any direction and hit a place that specializes in this holy meal. And me? I am a girl on a mission to try brunch at every one of them.

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Which brings us to Frankly Eatery. A newer addition to the Queen East line-up, offering brunch classics with an Indian twist. Brunch is so overdone around here, I love the idea of fusing the traditional dishes with some cultural spice!

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My roommie and I popped over after a Pilates class. Our abs were in pain, but our bellies hungry.

Our Pilates instructor (hi Sandra!) recommended their rice bowls. Megan went for the one on special: chicken in a tomato coconut sauce over rice.

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I had a bite and it was gooooood. The sauce rich thanks to the coconut, but still light because of the tomato. Only mildly spicy so the flavours still stood out.

I however had eggs on the mind so I went with the Egg Bhuri.

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Spicy Indian style scramble with onions, peas and tomatoes served w/ green salad and sliced baguette.

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They asked me if I wanted it mild, medium or hot. After going back and forth, I opted for the mild, and happy I did! It was still spicy but without making me break into a sweat. Loved the peas and the amount of eggs I got. The greens were nicely dressed and I piled everything on top of the baguette slices.

The best part though?

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My roommate, who doesn’t blog, but still takes pictures of her food. Everyone’s a closet food blogger ;)

Another one to cross off the Toronto restaurant list! And unlike last time, this local spot gets two thumbs up. One thumb for the awesome food, a second thumb for our waiter, who was wearing a Vandelay Industries t-shirt ;)

 

Question of the Day: What’s your favourite brunch item? Mine is the “Peggy’s Poached” from Cora’s. One egg on toast with cottage cheese and a plethora of fresh fruit. Oh yes, and multiple coffee refills. 

Food Matters

Hello friends!! Hope everyone had a great start to the week! Mine has been pretty darn good. A full day of great training clients, then seeing one of my favourite chefs/authors in person!!

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Mark Bittman, first and foremost, is the author of several of my favourite Runner’s World columns. He’s also the man behind The Minimalist. Always my favourite food column in the New York Times.

Ohyeah, and he’s got a bunch of those things… books?? :P

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Tonight, he spoke mostly about the content in his Food Matters book to promote the new Food Matters Cookbook. It’s all about eating consciously. I’m actually more familiar with How To Cook Everything, which is one of his awesomely simple and easy to follow cookbooks.

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I went in armed with not only my camera and foodie excitement, but also my trusty notebook. I’m an old journalist after all, I can’t help but take notes! Here are some of my favourite points from the Q&A:

  • Americans spend only 7% of their income on food. A very low percentage representing how many are living off cheap processed food.
  • “Pay the farmer, not the hospital.”
  • Ideally, our diets would consist of 90% plants with 10% coming from everything else (meat, processed food, and “junk”). An alarming number of people take in the reverse percentages. Bittman says we don’t have to be perfect – we just need to “seesaw” to get those numbers closer together. i.e. More plants, less of everything else.
  • Bittman thinks veganism is the highest form of conscious eating, but admitted  he personally will never get there. Instead he does a vegan diet until 6pm every day, then might have animal products with dinner. He said it doesn’t matter if you are a vegan, so long as you take steps in that direction.
  • Drew several comparisons between cigarettes and processed foods. Mentioned that only a few people quit smoking when the surgeon general’s warning against it came out in 1964. It took mass coercion and enforcement to see a big change in the number of people smoking. He used this to demonstrate that warning about the health risks of processed foods may not be enough. Also pointed out that much like cigarettes are linked to cancer, some foods are linked to diabetes.
  • “Cooking is not a spectator sport.” Bittman is not a huge fan of the Food Network, saying, “People are too busy watching other people cook on television.” Touché.

Overall it was a fun Q&A! I raised my hand to ask him about how running changed his perception of food, but my hand was never picked. I will say he’s exactly how I pictured him. Brutally honest, funny, self-deprecating and personable all in one.

 

Now how about I start showing you some food!

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I’ve had a few stellar food combinations recently. Beginning with this bowl of spicy oats.

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1/2 cup rolled oats cooked with water, a pinch of salt, bacon, and a scoop of cream cheese. Topped with two soft-fried eggs and Frank’s hot sauce.

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The cream cheese made the oats just that – creamy and cheesy! Runny yolks on hot oats is something you must try if you’re in to that sort of thing. It’s dreamy!

I’ve also been mixing cream cheese into salsa.

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Makes it something a little reminiscent of that neon-orange Tostitos con queso dip and awesome with carrots!

I paired this combo with a ham + swiss sandwich. Except I added a little kick with fresh herbs.

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In this case, a oregano under the melted cheese. I remember Leah posting about keeping fresh herbs on hand so I’ve been giving it a go. Wow! They make everything taste a million times better!

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Just like that, with a little cream cheese and oregano, my dinner turned from blah to extraordinary :)

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Dessert lately hasn’t been too classy.

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Some days I crave the fancy dark 80-whatever chocolate. Other days I just want some old-school Jersey Milk.

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Hits the spot. Reminds me of childhood when I only ate milk chocolate.

 

Another childhood favourite is sloppy joes paired with corn. I don’t know why my mother always made this particular combo, but now every time I eat sloppy joes, corn needs to be had. I polished off the lentil-based Snobby Joes the way they were meant to be eaten… on a bun. 

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Much better warm on a bun as opposed to cold on a pita like I’d been eating it.

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With the corn and green beans! Perfection.

There happens to be a fruit and vegetable stand a block away from the running store I work at. Their baskets are brimming with local Ontario apples and I can’t help but snatch some up every time I pass!

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Including this GINORMOUS honeycrisp. I put it in front of this crappy DVD for size comparison, but I realize you’re not getting the width of it here, which was very respectable indeed.

I ate it all.

Last, but not least, I’ve been snacking on Scottish treats!

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And by “snack” I mean I came home tonight and completely demolished the rest of the traditional Scottish oatcakes. Left side topped with PB + fluff, right side with almond butter + chocolate chips. Too bad I don’t have any jam in the house – it would be perfect! Guess I’ll just have to make more ;)

 

**If you’ve got a few seconds**
 pleasepleaseplease click here to vote for my Taste of Scotland post for the Project Food Blog contest!

And thank you if you already have! I just worked out a really fun concept for the third dinner party challenge and I really want to share it!

 

Question of the Day: What famous chef would you like to meet? Obviously my pick here is Alton Brown. I <3 that man!

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