What I Ate Wednesday!

Morning all! It’s that time again. Hope you are ready for another week of WIAW! This week’s post is featuring recent eats, so things I’ve had throughout the week instead of all in one day. Hope you enjoy. And as always a special thanks to Jenn, our lovely host!

One of my favorite breakfasts so far this week has been peanut butter and jelly oats. So heavenly.

IMG_2869This was made with a 1/2 cup of instant oats, 1 ripe banana (sliced), 3/4 cup of water, 1 tbsp of chia seeds, about 1 tbsp of plum preserves and 2 tbsp of peanut butter, and a sprinkle of coconut on top!

For lunch I had another almond pulp sandwich. I am really loving these!

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This time I made the sandwich with  roasted red pepper hummus, havarti cheese and greens. I also had a little green pepper on the side.

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And a Golden Delicious apple. One of my favorite kinds!

I’ve been meaning to try this place called Argo Tea for awhile now, there is a shop on campus that I walk by all the time and it always looks so good! I finally stopped in one afternoon and tried it, and I am glad I did.

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Not only was my drink delicious, I had an Irish Cream Latte, but the environment was great and I ended up sitting there for a bit to get some readings done for school. Also, how awesome are their cups!?

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This was my view from my seat. Watching New Yorkers go by…

One of my recent dinners was this lovely acorn squash, cranberry, cashew, and goat cheese dish sprinkled in cinnamon. Wow. Simple and scrumptious.

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Another great dinner was pasta with marinara, tempeh, and kale. With a side of garlic bread, of course. There’s nothing better than the classic pasta and garlic bread combo. Needless to say, I’ll definitely be making this again!

IMG_2747Hope you all are having some healthy and tasty eats this week too!

TGIW,

Sydney

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Breakfast Galore

Growing up I remember breakfast being my least favorite meal of the day. I think I got bored of cereal, pop tarts, toaster strudel…and more cereal. I don’t even remember what else I would eat. But now that I know all the glorious things breakfast has to offer, I’d say it just might take the title as my favorite meal! Oatmeal, toast, smoothies, muffins, yogurt, granola, fruit (aka bananas!), and peanut butter added to everything. You can’t go wrong.

So here are some of the tasty breakfasts I’ve been having recently, including a Blueberry Mango Smoothie. And thanks for these awesome glasses Mom, I love using them for whatever I drink!

IMG_2569Blueberry Mango Smoothie for One

1/2 cup frozen mango

1/4 cup frozen blueberries

1 small frozen banana, sliced

4 oz. silken tofu

1/2 cup of almond milk

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until thick and creamy!

I’ve also had some peanut butter raisin bran cereal. I don’t mind this type of cereal if it’s all jazzed up!

IMG_2620Peanut Butter Raisin Bran Cereal. Not so sure it is an actual recipe, but my bowl was filled with Trader Joe’s bran flakes, almond milk, a sliced banana, raisins and peanut butter. So good. And with a side of water of course!

This past week I kicked my normal oatmeal recipe up a notch. I made Cinnamon Spiced Hot Cocoa Oats. With the ‘spiced’ referring to chili powder. Yes, chili powder for breakfast. And boy was it delicious!

IMG_2696Cinnamon Spiced Hot Cocoa Oats

Serves 1

1/2 cup of old fashioned oats

1 ripe banana, sliced

1/2 cup of water

1 tbsp cocoa powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp chili powder

Peanut butter to drizzle on top

To make these oats, I combined the oats, banana and water in a bowl and microwaved for two minutes. Then I gave the oats a good stir and added in the cocoa powder, cinnamon and chili powder. I placed it in the microwave for another minute, and then took them out steamin’ hot. Drizzled a little peanut butter on top for kicks, and there you have it. Delicious hot chocolate oats.

Find the joy in breakfast,

Sydney

Chocolate Sunflower Butter Balls

I knew the minute I saw the recipe for these Chocolate Sunflower Butter Balls I had to try them! The recipe sounded absolutely fabulous and looked very easy to make. I’m so glad I whipped up a batch!

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You guys have got to make these. Besides having the heavenly combo of chocolate and nut butter, there are seeds and nuts galore that make these really special!

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To make this recipe, start by getting together all the ingredients.

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Mix together the oats, almonds, flaxseeds, cocoa, chia seeds, salt and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Then in a small microwaveable bowl, melt the sunflower butter for about a minute to get it a little more runny. Then add in the honey, maple syrup and vanilla and stir. Pour sunflower butter mixture over the dry ingredients and mix until combined.

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Then fold in the remaining ingredients (chocolate chips and chocolate covered sunflower seeds), and stir again to combine. Now you have a scrumptious batch of homemade granola, which I like best stored in the fridge.

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If you like, form the granola into little balls and make chocolate sunflower butter bites! The granola batch I made was not overly sticky, so that’s why I kept most of it as granola crumbles!

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Either way this stuff is insanely delicious. I’ve had my granola straight from the fridge, mixed with a little coconut almond milk, and on top of yogurt. Yum!

Here is what you’ll need to whip these up!

Chocolate Sunflower Butter Balls/Granola

Makes about 2 cups of granola

Recipe inspired by How Sweet It Is

1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

1/3 cup sliced almonds, chopped

1/4 cup of flax seed

2 tbsp chia seeds

1 and 1/2 tbsp cocoa powder

A pinch of cinnamon

A pinch of salt

1/4 cup of sunflower butter

1/8 cup of honey

1/8 cup of maple syrup

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp of chocolate chips, chopped

2 tbsp of chocolate covered sunflower seeds

 

Have a lovely weekend!

Sydney

What I Ate Wednesday!

I sure have some tasty treats to share with you all today! Happy WIAW! And thanks to Jenn for hosting us. I’m loving the routine of my Wednesdays now, where whenever I have a free minute to go online I check out all the amazing food fellow bloggers are posting about. It definitely keeps me inspired and trying to incorporate more variety into what I eat each week! So without further ado here are my eats from Tuesday.

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I started off the day with some research for a literature review I have to do for one of my classes. My topic is whether or not food marketing and advertising plays a role in the development of obesity in children. I think compiling all the current information on this topic is going to be very intriguing! Along with my research I had peanut butter toast and a banana for breakfast. Delicious! Breakfast makes me happy.

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My mid-morning snack was a bit of bran flakes, blueberries, cranberries and coconut milk. Quite the lovely combo.

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For lunch I had leftover spaghetti with marinara sauce, tempeh and kale. And I added in the little bit of leftover acorn squash that I had too. Very tasty and satisfying!

I had some cucumber on the side but they were a little old and slimy…I ate one and realized the trash would probably appreciate them more than my stomach.

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Luckily I also had an apple all sliced up so I could eat that as well.

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By mid-afternoon I was ready for a snack at work. So I had two chocolate sunflower butter oat balls. Yum! I’ll be sharing the recipe for these soon!

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After I got back from class in the evening I had a big salad topped with leftover curry veggie burger crumbles, cranberries, goat cheese, balsamic vinegar and some roasted red pepper hummus. I cannot even begin to describe how scrumptious this was. I would eat this again for breakfast! Also had a roll on the side which I forgot to get a picture of. Oops.

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I was still craving something more after dinner, so along with my epidemiology readings I had an applesauce. Sweet and simple.

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My night also consisted of Skyping with one of my best friends back home, I love Skype! Afterwards I had a bit of my dark mint chocolate for dessert, perfect end to the night!

Also, just thought I’d share with you the lovely goodies I came away with from the local market last week. Does anyone else get excited about quality dark chocolate, silken tofu, coconut and anything ginger flavored? Well if not that’s okay, more for me!

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I was pretty pumped as I was walking up to my apartment with my delicious finds in hand, so you can only imagine the sheer joy I felt when I found that the two magazine subscriptions my Mom had ordered me for christmas had arrived on the same day. It was a good sign! Hope your Wednesday is filled with as much happiness as mine was.

TGIW,

Sydney

Ricotta Butternut Brussels Sprouts Pizza w/ Cranberries

I. Love. Thursdays. Yesterday was another great day filled with yoga in the morning, a delicious vegan lunch at a new restaurant, and work in the afternoon.

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I had lunch with a friend at a restaurant called Sacred Chow, and had an amazing Power Bowl which consisted of BBQ seitan, soba noodles, and collard greens. Wow, doesn’t get much better than that.

At night I had my food policy class, which was as amazing as always. Our lecture topic was Government Dietary Advice, whether or not it is clear and effective, and if not, how can we fix it? At one point during class we broke out into groups to do an exercise where we all created our own dietary guideline icon. For example, instead of the food pyramid or MyPlate, we were given the task to create what we believed would be the best icon for expressing dietary advice.

The group I was in came up with the idea of a stoplight; where the red light symbolizes foods to pause and think about before you eat (a.k.a. eat sparingly), the yellow light symbolizes foods to eat everyday in moderation (foods to pace yourself with), and the green light symbolizes foods to go ahead and eat as much of as you want. An example of foods in the red category would be red meat and refined sugars, foods in the yellow category would be things like lean proteins and grains, and foods in the green category would be fruits and vegetables and water.

This exercise ended up being a lot more difficult than I thought. There are so many components to factor in, that in the quick drawing of our icon we could not incorporate them all. The other groups all had great ideas as well, such as including the importance of physical activity. By taking part in this activity I learned that there is no one correct way to incorporate all the necessary advice into a single, easily communicable icon. It’s easy to critique the government guidelines, but it is very challenging to represent everything involved in a healthy diet in one image/icon if you try.

I wish I would have gotten a picture of our classes dietary guidelines, they were all pretty creative! In the spirit of eating healthy, and incorporating a variety of green and yellow light foods into our diet, here is a recipe that does just that. This Ricotta Butternut Brussels Sprouts Pizza w/ Cranberries is full of veggies, and has some fruit and whole grains involved as well.

IMG_2453This was so good you guys! Homemade pizzas are the best!

IMG_2508Veggie heaven.

IMG_2503Ricotta Butternut Brussels Sprouts Pizza W/ Cranberries

Makes 1 pizza

1 prepared whole wheat pizza crust

1 tbsp olive oil

1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

7.5 oz. ricotta cheese

10 brussels sprouts, stems chopped off and cut in half

Butternut squash (about 7, 1″ thick half circles…or probably a cup of chopped squash)

1 cup frozen spinach, thawed

1/4 cup of cranberries

A sprinkle of feta cheese

To make this pizza start by preheating the oven to 400 degrees.

Place the butternut squash and brussels sprouts on a tin foil lined baking sheet and drizzle with a little olive oil if desired. Otherwise pop the veggies in the oven and roast for about 25 minutes, or until tender.

Once the veggies are done, change the temperature on the oven to whatever your prepared crust’s instructions advise. Now begin assembling the pizza!

First spread the olive oil and balsamic vinegar over the crust, and then add the ricotta cheese.

On top of the cheese, layer the spinach and then the squash and brussels sprouts. You can make the placement as artistic as you want! I made a little design with my toppings but you can do whatever you please!

Next, add the cranberries to the pizza and finally sprinkle with a little feta cheese if desired.

Bake for as long as instructed on the crust’s package. Take out of the oven and enjoy!

Almonds are forever,

Sydney

What I Ate Wednesday and Avocado Almond Pulp Sandwiches!

Hello friends, can you believe it’s Wednesday again? Already!? This week marks my fifth installment of WIAW, and I have to say I am ready to share my eats. Thanks as always to Jenn for hosting this party over at Peas & Crayons!

My Tuesday morning was filled with studying, a little bit of epidemiology and a little bit of research methods. My morning was fueled by this delicious bowl of yogurt and toppings.

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I don’t normally have yogurt as the main component of my breakfast, but with no ripe bananas in my kitchen (serious heartache), I couldn’t make my normal banana oats, or english muffin with peanut butter and banana, or…anything with banana! Thank goodness I had a pear. I love me some pears as well. But normally it’s an afternoon thing, pears are just better in the afternoon.

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Anyway, this breakfast turned out to be quite tasty and satisfying, and fits perfectly with the theme of WIAW and trying new foods and dishes and breaking out of your food box.

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Glad I had this bowl of vanilla greek yogurt, blueberry cinnamon flax cereal, cranberries, peanut butter and almond pulp. Yum!

In the afternoon I headed to campus for work. And I brought along my lunch to eat when I got there. It was a delicious Black Bean Salsa Verde Burrito (recipe to come). In the spirit of this month’s WIAW theme of ‘love your veggies,’ I wanted to incorporate some of my favorites into lunch: beets and sweet potatoes!

IMG_2640Here’s my side of veggies, tomatoes and the sweet potato.

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And an apple for kicks.

IMG_2656As a snack in my biostatistics class that evening I had a handful of cashews.

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Unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of dinner. I went out to eat with a friend and I had an amazing Pad Thai with vegetables and tofu dish. It was so good and I completely forgot to take a picture. Oops!

For dessert I had a slice of the chocolate cinnamon bread from Starbucks. Very good, I need to try to create that recipe on my own!

IMG_2663Since I forgot to show you what I actually had for dinner, here is a quick and delicious recipe you can whip up! If you’ve been wondering what I’ve done with my leftover almond pulp from making homemade almond milk, well, I’ve been making lots of sandwiches! And so far this Avocado Almond Pulp Sandwich is my favorite.

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So simple and so delicious. Essentially, the almond pulp is what’s left over after straining the almond milk through the nut milk bag in the whole almond milk making process. Don’t throw it away because you can use it in lots of tasty recipes!

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Avocado Almond Pulp Sandwich

Makes 1 sandwich

1/3 cup of almond pulp

1/2 an avocado, sliced

A couple tablespoons of your favorite hummus ( I used cilantro jalape├▒o hummus)

Sliced cucumber (for some added crunch!)

A handful of greens

2 slices of whole grain bread

To make this sandwich simply place all the ingredients between the two slices of bread, I know, crazy right? Enjoy!

TGIW,

Sydney

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Barley

Another Monday has arrived. And I am pretty happy about that to be honest! I was cooped up inside all weekend because of winter storm Nemo and an immense amount of school work, so it’ll be nice to be out and about and go to class again. Research Methods is the class I have today. We have been assigned groups for our final research project and are going to be able to choose our own topics. Can’t wait! All my members are interested in food policy, food advocacy, and nutrition issues in general, so I think it’s going to be a great assignment!

The recipe I have today is a wonderful side dish. It is simple, nutritious and delicious. I feel like I say that a lot here on my blog, but that’s because I do make an effort to cook recipes that showcase how healthy eating doesn’t have to be a chore. And more importantly, healthy eating most definitely does not have to compromise flavor! This recipe for Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Barley encompasses all of these elements.

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You only need one bowl and one baking sheet to make this dish too. Makes for an easy clean up!

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The colors of this dish are gorgeous, the deep magenta cranberries and the pistachio-like green of the brussels sprouts are beautiful. Very elegant.

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The flavors are subtle to begin with, but when you add the maple syrup the sweetness really helps this dish pop.

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So what are you waiting for? Go make this easy to prepare, healthy and scrumptious dish!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Cranberries and Barley

Serves 2-3

Recipe inspired by Cookie and Kate

20 brussels sprouts, stems removed and chopped in half

1 tbsp olive oil

1 and 1/2 tbsp maple syrup

1 cup of barley

1/3 cup dried cranberries

1/3 cup slivered almonds

To make this dish, start by preheating your one to 375 degrees and lining a baking sheet with tin foil.

Place the brussels sprouts on the lined baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and 1 tbsp of maple syrup. Bake for ~20 minutes, or until the sprouts are tender.

While the sprouts are baking, cook the barley according to package directions.

Once the brussels sprouts and barley are cooked, simply combine them in a large mixing bowl with the cranberries and almonds. Drizzle the remaining 1/2 tbsp of maple syrup over top, mix again, and serve. Enjoy!

Happy Monday,

Sydney