Trying to find my stride (metaphorically speaking)

AH HA! I haven’t yet been consumed by nursing school, but pretty close. The blog has been on the back burner for a bit, and I apologize to the five people who probably read what I have to say. When they say it’s an accelerated nursing program they’re not kidding. I’ve pretty much had two exams, if not three every week since starting at the end of last month. My time has consisted of studying, studying, and more studying. Unluckily for me a few weeks ago I started having patellofemoral pain syndrome symptoms (something I had last year), so I haven’t really been able to run much anyways.

This has given me some anxiety about the marathon I’m supposed to run next Sunday in Portland Maine. I’ve missed a lot of miles the past month due to school and injury so I’m just shooting to finish no matter what my time. After that the plan is to rehab/recovery and start fresh once the knee is 100%. Instead of trying to train injured. Anyways I’m looking forward to a weekend in a beautiful place, with my beautiful partner Kate, and a few of our friends. The only thing I’m looking forward to more than the race is the L.L. Bean Factory Store aka Fleece Heaven!!

Since mechanically my body isn’t where it could be I’m hoping that fueling myself with some healthy homemade meals will help ease some of my worries. This week I planned a meal for every night, here’s what I’ve got:

Monday: One Pot Mexican Rice Casserole

Tuesday: Blue Cheese, Smashed Avocado, Roasted Tomato Grilled Cheese

Wednesday: Buffalo Mac and Cheese

Thursday: Slow Cooker Lentil Chili

Friday: Leftovers before heading to Portland!!

 

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What I’m eating this week 8/20/14

So in trying to get back on track I’ve actually done some meal planning for the rest of the week! I spent the first part of the week in Vermont, and made a quick overnight trip to Boston so I only have a few nights left of dinners this week. I’ll be honest after making the first meal tonight I can say I already feel better and it has helped me feel excited to start following my training/eating schedule again.

  • Spaghetti Squash Casserole with Spinach– I made this for dinner tonight and it was delicious! A great alternative to all the pasta I ate last night while in the North End of Boston for dinner. I’m excited that spaghetti squash is coming back into season, can’t wait to find more creative ways to use it.Processed with VSCOcam
  • Red Quinoa and Black Bean Burgers– I’ve made these before and the flavors were great, however they ended up a bit mushy from over processing the ingredients. I’m planning on only processing two thirds of the ingredients before forming the patties. Hopefully this gives them better texture.
  • Coconut Zucchini Muffins– I know this doesn’t count as a meal but Kate and I are going away this weekend for our friend’s annual “Raftzilla” float on Cape Cod and we figured these would be great for a quick breakfast/snack on the ride down. Fresh zucchini from Hudak’s Farm Stand in VT will make these even better!

Happy Raftzilla to all!!

Raftzilla of years past

Raftzilla of years past

 

 

What I’m eating this week 7/27/14

I’M STILL HERE!!

For the past few weeks I haven’t done as much blogging as I’d like. The truth is I’ve just been exhausted because my marathon training has been ramping up. I’ve needed to spend more time stretching, recovering, and just sleeping. I feel like now that I’ve got a few weeks with LOOONNGG runs in that I’m starting to acclimate to the increasing mileage. So excuses aside here’s what I’m planning on making this week…

  •  Edamame quinoa salad w/ raspberry vinaigrette-this looks super easy and has lots of protein in it which I’m needing more of lately
  • Chopped edamame caprese salad-I figured this would be another way to utilize the edamame I’ve got, plus I have leftover cherry tomatoes from making a scallion and tomato quiche this weekend. 
  • Bourbon cherry smash-I wish this was a meal by itself (well it could be), but I actually made a variation of this after my PR setting 5K this weekend! Instead of bourbon I used some of GrandTen Distilling’s Fire Puncher Black Vodka. I’m not much for vodka, however this isn’t a sickly sweet flavored spirit and the spicy aftertaste is delicious. It reminds me of some aji chocolat my girlfriend brought me back from Ecuador last year. Anyways it went perfectly with the cocktail I highly recommend it.

I’m also making a surprise meal this Saturday for Kate’s return from Tanzania!! I just didn’t wanna post it here in case she see’s this first. (see you Saturday)

 

What I’m eating this week 7/7/14

Last summer when I was living in Boston we had no access to a grill at our apartment. So this summer since I do have grill access I am trying to take advantage of grilling as much as possible! The beginning of next this week looks to have good weather so I’m doing two more meals on the grill, and then an easy salad.

 

Grilled Stuffed Peppers

The stuffing for this recipe is actually just the Red Lentil Dahl that I’ve made before. So first I’m going to make up the Dahl and set aside. Then I’m going to brush four bell peppers with a little olive oil and grill each side until they get a nice char. Once they’ve cooled a bit I’m going to stuff them with the Dahl and place back on the grill just for a few minutes until everything melds together nicely.

I also had left over Dahl from the stuffing and decided to use it as dip for some tortilla chips left over from 4th of July…Oh my goodness was it good! I’m thinking of making  a layered dip now with the Dahl some yogurt and maybe a little cheese melted on top, to be continued….

 

Grilled Mushroom Caps with Tomato and Cheese

This meal is super easy (they usually get easier as the week goes on). I was inspired by this recipe; however I am going to do a whole tomato slice because I think it’ll stay together better, and I want to cook it directly on the grill surface. For this one I’m just going to take some portabella mushroom caps which I’ve brushed with a bit of olive oil and grill them until almost done directly on the grill. I’m then going to take a large tomato slice that I’ve dipped in olive oil, black pepper, crushed garlic, and red pepper flakes and put that on top of the mushroom cap. It all gets topped with a little mozzarella cheese and goes back on to the grill until cooked through and the cheese is melted.

 

Simple Kale Spinach Salad

By the end of the week I tend to get lazy so I’m planning on having a salad with lots of spinach and kale, chopped carrots, chopped tomato, and a little homemade lemon olive oil dressing.

 

All of these are pretty simple and should yield leftovers so I’ll get a couple meals out of each option.

 

Tomato Avocado Quiché

Today the weather was finally a little cooler so I was able to actually use the oven without melting. I had bought the ingredients for quiché about a week ago but wasn’t sure if I’d have the chance to make one.  I absolutely love quiché, and have ever since my dad had me making them for the cafe we used to own. I like that you can customize it depending on what ingredients you have on hand, and can use more or less egg/cheese/veggies depending on how healthy you want to be. I used what I had on hand for veggies and it of course came out awesome.Processed with VSCOcam

Ingredients:

  • 5 Eggs
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 1 ripe avocado
  • 1/3-1/2 block cheese
  • 1 package crescent roll dough
  • 1/2 teaspoon each
  • cumin, chili powder, garlic powder

 

Method:Processed with VSCOcam

  • Spread crescent dough into lightly greased pie plate and pre-bake 10min at 375∘F
  • Slice tomatoes in half and dice the avocado, set aside
  • Beat the eggs and almond milk together in a large bowl
  • stir spices into the egg mixture
  • Shred desired cheese (I usually use muenster cheddar jack)
  • Once crust comes out of the oven pour the egg mixture into the dish
  • Evenly distribute tomatoes, avocado, and cheese into the dish
  • Bake at between 375∘F-400∘F depending on your oven, you will know it’s done when the outside has puffed up and browned slightly

Watermelon Feta Salad with Basil and Balsamic Vinegar

Yesterday I spent the day at the beach playing wiffle ball, throwing the football, and jumping into the freezing North Atlantic water. I had bought some watermelon to bring with me and had a bunch left over so I started looking for food pics on Instagram for inspiration. Sometimes I just like to look at food pics and form my own dish from there. It’s a great place for easy inspiration and I don’t feel pressure to follow any recipe so it’s more fun for me. Here’s the dish I made for lunch today.

Ingredients:

  • Cup of chopped watermelonProcessed with VSCOcam
  • A few ounces of crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar
  • A few leaves of fresh basil

Method (super easy):

  • Throw the watermelon in a bowl
  • Sprinkle feta crumbles around the melon
  • Chiffonade the basil, and distribute on top
  • Drizzle the balsamic vinegar across the salad

I wasn’t sure if I would like the combination of flavors but somehow it works perfectly! It was so refreshing and I had two servings after coming in from washing the car this afternoon. I have a feeling I’ll be making this many times this summer.

 

What I’m cooking this week 6/24/14

Recently we’ve had a great warm stretch of weather and although I’ve taken a few weeks off to rest my foot (which I’m starting to think is just tendinitis) I’ve still been able to soak up some sun and even do a little outdoor yoga. The only downside is I hate having to turn on the oven to cook. This week I’m making some cooler dishes, and already pre-roasted some tomatoes for the first sandwich so I hopefully won’t need to do very much real cooking this week.  Here’s what I’m making…

  • Blender Gazpacho
    • Nothing is better than cold soup on a hot day, and putting it in mason jars for work make them great portable lunches
  • Bean Salad
    • I just threw together some leftover black beans, corn, green beans, and edamame. Then tossed them with some salt, pepper, and olive oil.Processed with VSCOcam