I hope your day is going splendidly so far! Today’s recap is a little late because I just got home from a job interview. I think it went quite well, but keep your fingers crossed for me! This morning I was up at the crack of dawn to teach spin and I must admit, it’s amazing how fast our bodies get used to different sleeping schedules! Lately I’ve been in bed no earlier than about 10:30 and up at 7am, so I wasn’t exactly springing out of bed at the sound of this morning’s 5:20am alarm! Nevertheless, it was a great class with some great ladies!
1. A new Recipe of the Week: I think you’ll like this one! Yesterday I briefly hinted at one of the ingredients, which was a bag of poppyseeds I found amongst all of this:
Bulk Barn really is fantastic for buying spices for low prices, but I’m a little bit lazy about putting them in jars. There are wee baggies of spices all over the place on my spice rack and in the cupboard above it, and I really do need to get onto this job! Anyways, I came across the poppyseeds whilst looking for some other spices, and put them to a very good use in Post-Workout Citrus Poppyseed Waffles . This waffle making episode was much less eventful than my first one when I made Apple Cinnamon Protein waffles with soy flour back on Try Something New Tuesday 17 . There was only a fraction of the mess to tidy up and it didn’t require multiple attempts!
Now these would certainly get me springing out of bed at 5:20am. The recipe made enough batter for 1 large waffle and one smaller one (underneath). The topping consisted of vanilla yogurt mixed with a little dried lemon peel, and diced oranges. I’ve mentioned dried lemon peel in a couple of recipes lately, and if you can get some, I strongly recommend it. This is a much easier (and tidier) alternative to zesting lemons and it adds so much flavour. In case you’re not sure what you’re looking for, it looks like this:
2. A new vegetable:
This is red Swiss chard, a very close relative to regular green Swiss chard. I tried it on two occasions yesterday – once at breakfast and once at dinner (but more on that later). Rather than making my morning green monster with spinach as the only green, I added about 1 1/2 loosely packed cups of red Swiss chard and 2 frozen clusters of spinach. Also in the mix:
1 cup of water
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 tsp maca
1 tsp guar gum
1 packet stevia
1 frozen banana
a few shakes of cinnamon
Kashi Go Lean and raspberries for the topping
I ended up adding about 1/2 packet more stevia than usual because the red Swiss chard made this monster taste much more green than usual!! I like the idea of mixing greens in smoothies because although spinach provides a little sweetness and lots of nutritional value, swiss chard is also a vitamin superstar. According to this source , swiss chard is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, manganese, potassium, iron, vitamin E, and dietary fiber.
3. Another new vegetable: Pea tenders
Also known as pea shoots, pea tenders are part of the pea plant. They can be eaten in salads, stir fries, green smoothies (I haven’t tried this yet, but I plan to do so tomorrow!) and as garnishes for dishes like soup. According to peashoots.com , they are bursting with vitamin A, C, and folic acid. Like many other greens, they are crispy, low in calories, and are a great cure for salad boredom!
I found these organic pea tenders at a local health food store, and one of the employees that I spoke to told me that she enjoys eating them in wraps. This sparked an idea that also involved my next new thing…
4. A new bread: Silverhills Bakery Little Big Bread.
This may have been my favourite new thing this week! Silverhills Bakery produces breads and bagels using organic, non genetically modified sprouted grains with no additives. The company’s newest product is Wheat-Free Chia bread, which is currently only available at a few locations. According to the Silverhills website, the ingredients in Little Big Bread are:
Even though Little Big Bread is thinly sliced, 2 pieces contain 5g of fiber and 7g protein. I’m not sure about you, but I like my breads to be fairly rustic and grainy, and this one certainly fit the bill. The bag also has some interesting information about Silverhills Bakery on the back:
I combined the goodness of said bread with the organic pea tenders for a delicious lunch:
A Little Big Bread sandwich with chicken breast, pea tenders, grilled eggplant, hummus, and red onion slices.
So so SO good!
5. New Recipe Inspiration: The Oprah Magazine Cookbook
Back when I was celebrating my 22nd birthday with a bunch of my besties at Wildcraft, I received lots of lovely prezzies. These included large amounts of Starbucks credit and the above cookbook. My friends know me very well, don’t they!? This particular cookbook has some gorgeous photos and dozens of recipes that I can’t wait to try. The one I chose to make for dinner last night included a whopping three new things….
6, 7, and 8:Olives, capers, and marlin. To be fair, I think I actually have tasted an olive before, probably as a child. I don’t remember what it tasted like, but it must have been a negative experience because I always request that restaurants serve my orders without olives. Like many items in previous Try Something New Tuesdays, olives got a second chance. The recipe also called for capers, so I bought a jar of those too.
The recipe in the cookbook was called Sicilian Style Swordfish, but unfortunately when I arrived at the fish counter this was not available. Marlin however, was on sale and the fishmonger suggested it as a very close alternative.
Now, pause for a second and imagine yourself in this situation. You arrive at the grocery store and begin browsing around the fresh fish section. There is an Asian woman standing next to you with her son, who is about 2, sitting in the shopping cart. She’s having a fish (fresh from the tank) killed, cleaned, etc by the man working behind the counter. He finishes doing whatever it is that needs to be done, wraps the fish in paper, and passes it to the woman. She places it in the shopping cart, next to her son. All of the sudden, the paper starts flapping about in a rather spazzy fashion. The woman shrieks, rips her son out of the cart and jumps away. The man comes out from behind the counter, gives the packet a little “crack”, then puts it back in the cart saying “It should be ok now.”
Yes, that was a true story. I was rather entertained and stood there watching the whole thing before grabbing a marlin steak, which I was confident would not try to jump out of my hands, and heading to the cash register.
Using the recipe for Sicilian Style Swordfish as a guide, I made a few modifications and cooked up some Sicilian Style Marlin instead. I served it with the recommended sauce of olives, tomatos and capers, over a bed of lightly sauteed red Swiss chard in garlic and a splash of white wine.
Now, I have noted this in the recipe, but it is worth repeating: If you do not like olives, you will likely not like the sauce that accompanies the fish. I didn’t realize how strong the flavour of the olives would be, and ended up knocking most of them off of the fish. The capers on the other hand were ok, but next time I’d rather make the marlin (which was absolutely delicious, by the way) with a sauce of tomatos and herbs.
6. A new fruit: Longan fruit.
These are very similar to the lychees that I tried on Try Something New Tuesday 15 , but a bit smaller and with a smoother skin. The longan fruit is a tropical fruit in Thailand and China, and is used in soups, snacks and desserts. Apparently, the Chinese tend to use it more for its medicinal purposes and less as a fruit.
To get into it, I sliced the top part off and peeled the brown skin away. The texture of the fruit and the seed inside was almost identical to the lychee. However, the taste was nowhere near as enjoyable. It wasn’t as sweet and the smell was a bit nasty.
Seems to strongly resemble an eyeball... hmm..
I tried to dress them up a bit by eating them in a fruit salad, but ended up eating around them. Can’t win ‘em all.
7. See something new: Eat, Pray, Love! After finally finishing the book, my friend Kara and I went out to see the movie. The friends I’ve been talking to have been giving me mixed reviews, so I figured it was time to see it myself.
In my opinion, it was a well done book-to-movie adaptation and a lot of the imagery I’d created in my head while reading the book looked exactly the same on screen. However, I think people who watch it that haven’t yet read the book might not gain as much of an appreciation for some of the lines because they appear in slightly different contexts in the film. Some parts are missed, including one of the bits that stood out to me which was the topic of having goals without a practical purpose. (If you missed my post about this, check it out here .) Obviously the filmmakers couldn’t include everything – that would have made for a very long movie! All in all though, I found it enjoyable and entertaining.
That brings me to the end! I’m off to make some lunch and get around to the to-do’s I didn’t manage to tackle yesterday (ahemm… filthy disgusting kitchen). Have a great afternoon!
Questions for Today:
Have you been to see Eat, Pray, Love yet? What did you think?
Did you try anything new yesterday?
Do you purchase cookbooks, or find most of your recipes online? If you like to buy the books, which ones are your favourites?