Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Refocus

Well it has been on my mind for a while, but I think the time has come to transition over to a new blog. 

This blog has been so many things since it started. It's been my rant box, it's been my craft challenge, it's been where I learned to cook. But maybe what it was always missing was a focus. 

I was told once you shouldn't bother with a phd until you know what you are passionate about. That really stuck with me. It has taken a long time to figure out that I never really knew what and who I wanted to be, much less what I wanted a blog to be. But now I'm close to knowing. 

So bear with me over the next couple weeks, as I take a hiatus and determine what the new blog will be, what site it will be located on, and where I go from here. 

And as always, happy crafting. 
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Sunday, September 7, 2014

Kale Quiche with Sweet Potato Crust

-1 medium but fat sweet potato, peeled and thinly sliced
-1 bunch kale leaves, stems and ribs removed
-12 asparagus spears, chopped
-1/2 C onion, finely chopped
-2 garlic cloves
-2 ounces feta
-6 eggs
-2 tsp paprika
-salt and pepper to taste

Grease a 9 inch baking dish and preheat your oven to 385F. Line the bottom with sweet potato slices. Cut some slices in half and line the edges as well. Bake for 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, sauté the kale, asparagus, onions, and garlic in a little evoo or preferred oil. I used a teaspoon of olive oil and a half tablespoon of Serrano honey vinegar (Fustini's of course). Cover and steam until tender. 

When the crust is ready, add 2/3 of the veggies and half the feta. Whip the eggs and put half the eggs in. Add remaining veggies, eggs, and feta. Top with salt and pepper as desired. Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes. 

I put it in myfitnesspal app and about half the quiche clocks in at 457 calories. HALF THE QUICHE! I feel awesome. I ate about a quarter of it. If I want to get back down to 145, I should be clocking in just over 1,300 calories a day if I don't work out. That in and of itself is motivation to workout a bit more because really...1300? That's it? No joy. Don't get me wrong I don't think I'm fat or anything, I don't hate my body or anything like that, but I do want to get a little healthier and used to a healthier lifestyle. I'm a big believer in getting used to something before you have to do it. Someday, I won't have a metabolism that makes up for my terrible habits, and then I would have to do major overhauls. 

I'm attempting to put my recipes in my app which is a slow process but it is cool to know what the calorie counts are on things I like to make. So far it looks like most of the things I've been making are right around 500 calories. That was a good thing to see, as I shouldn't have to overhaul things to terribly. 

Happy (healthy) crafting!

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Monday, September 1, 2014

Chicken Slaw Salad in a Spicy Peanut Dressing

-4 ounces shredded rotisserie chicken
-1 small bag rainbow slaw
-1 C Greek yogurt
-1 C almond milk
-6 TB PB2 (powdered peanut butter)
-1/2 TB Siracha, plus more to taste
-1/2 tsp ginger
-dash soy sauce
-2 tsp garlic
-1 tsp evoo, flavored if desired

Mix everything except the chicken and slaw to form the sauce. Salt and pepper to taste, and add more Siracha as desired. The peanut flavor is rich so you will probably end up using a little more than what you might think, but start off low. I made the mistake my first time using Siracha of starting with a healthy tablespoon and that was quite the chicken salad let me tell you. 

But if you like your lips going numb, by all means start heavy. 

Once you have the sauce adjusted as you like, add it to a bowl with the chicken and slaw and toss to combine. Or start with a bowl big enough to toss the ingredients in and learn from my errors. 

The tiny bag of slaw is a lot more than it looks, so you will probably use all of the sauce. Stir it around well and taste, adding more salt or spice as needed. Refrigerate overnight. 

The boyfriend and I are going to try to eat healthy until Thanksgiving and the holiday season, and I am making it a point to make it as painless as possible. Healthy eating never has to be boring, and it also doesn't have to be complex. You can whip this sauce up in under five minutes, you can use one bowl if you start with a big enough one (I did not), and you can buy preshredded chicken from your deli at the grocery store and make it that much simpler. 

We got back a bit earlier than usual today thanks to traffic not being nearly as bad as when we traveled on the fourth. I crashed for a nap, as logging ten hours driving over one long weekend really caught up with me. We had stopped on the way home for just enough groceries for lunch tomorrow and a snack, and somehow this idea popped into my head. 

Why just enough for those meals? If you knew me, you would know I am the most irresponsible person ever in the grocery store. I. Love. Grocery stores. I love finding new things and concocting crazy ideas on the fly and I always buy too much. 

And then I waste it. 

And then I'm sad. 

But we had discussed the time I made shepherds pie with sweet potatoes (no crust) on the way back and how good it turned out. It was one of those things where I made it once and never thought about it again. As I picking up the ingredients I was thinking about other things I had not had in a while, and my healthy peanut sauce popped in my head. Over the weekend we were at a pitch-in with a lot of great salads, and that is how this idea spawned. 

We will see what kind of reviews the boy gives it tomorrow. So far I have had very good luck and excellent reviews on my healthy salads and dips, so I am quite hopeful. 

I got to do a lot of cooking this weekend, and I had a great time doing it. I'm actually not one for wanting to avoid cooking on vacations or mini-trips, and I love when someone will let me come in and commandeer their kitchen for a moment. My mom and my boyfriend's mom are awesome for this. They both consistently have excellently-stocked kitchens and never mind what new shenanigan I'm proposing. This time it was my Mexican street corn muffin, a hit with my mom and now with the boyfriend's family as well. 

It was also redemption for me, because last time I made those muffins I really screwed them up. 

Don't forget baking powder in muffins. It will haunt you. 

Luckily there's none of that in this recipe and it is pretty much no fuss no muss. 

Happy crafting!
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