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In the Kitchen

What We Ate For Dinner:

Spaghetti and Bean Balls!!!

~E
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Healthy Breakfast + Unhealthy Television

 Note: High-lighted hyperlinks will take you elsewhere to learn about the health benefits of each ingredient.

You know, sometimes I surprise even myself with genius meals. This morning’s breakfast consisted of fried egg, guacamole, and cilantro on a whole wheat bagel. To wash it down? Hot mug of Chinese Detox Tea, a full glass of ice water and half glass of almond milk (to get my calcium without the lactose). And last, for breakfast dessert. . . yeah, I do that, a small cup of Mott’s Granny Smith apple sauce with cinnamon. Now that’s what I call a breakfast!

The bad thing is I usually don’t have breakfast like this, I usually don’t have breakfast AT ALL. When I met Noah, he was horrified to see me flitting out the door with a toaster strudel or nothing. I’m trying to do better now that I’ve lightened up the “meat load.” And I’m also trying to be creative with what I’ve got in my pantry, taking a page from Evelyn’s book.

While I’m eating, I’m deep conditioning with a thick thick coat of Tresemme Conditioner and wearing shower cap. I’m watching the Wendy Williams Show and drinking in the gossip about Lindsay Lohan. I like Williams, she’s the kind of bawdy lady who talks frank, all the time. She’s kind of an Everywoman too, very preoccupied with cheap fashion, bitchin’ heels, and beef jerky.

How You Doin’?


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This Girl’s Life

I’m a Co-op member! Today I became part owner of the Common Ground Whole Foods Co-op here in my town. Now, this does not mean that I am rich or that I will be getting checks from the store. It means that I am one person along with over 2500 here in my town who have a share in the store. Since the store is a non-profit, income is derived through community donations and member/owner investments and purchases. The co-ownership fee was a mere $60 and is fully refundable shall I decide to move or no longer shop at the store. The major perk of co-ownership is the discounts. As we all know, natural and organic foods are not cheap. Since I have begun to buy more natural and organic food it is important to me that I do not go broke in the process, therefore this opportunity seemed like a great one. And it is. Those who invest in the store (and other co-ops like this) are helping to support and sustain local farmers and the production and distribution of natural and organic foods.

Spring Break has arrived and I am thrilled! I get a week away from stress-inducing students and headache-inducing course prep. While I think that teaching is one of the best jobs on earth (who else gets christmas, summer, spring, and holiday breaks??? did I mention the flexible schedule???) it is also a job that never ends. There is ALWAYS work to do. You are NEVER done. If you are a person like myself that actually cares about the quality of your teaching, there is always something to improve or develop in a course. Being a young, black, female instructor certainly brings its own unique challenges as well, but that’s another post…hooray Spring Break!!!

Hot Mama. While I’d love to think that my life and myself have remained the same pre and post baby, it is not so. It takes more effort than a little bit to keep up with friends, maintain a marriage, work full-time, take care of a young child, and attempt to be “cute”. Shopping is a chore. Even if I go alone, I’m on a schedule because I know I should get back home to her or pick her up from daycare at a certain time. When I’m shopping with her, please. I would hardly call grabbing a few of the first things that look good, without even trying them on, shopping. Everything is planned–when I will wash my hair, what I will wear to work tomorrow, when I will start dinner, when I will return a phone call. I had given up on the idea that any of my belongings were sacred even before my little girl was born, but I was still almost brought to tears when she broke a handmade Nepalese (multi-layered, micro-beaded) necklace given to me by a grad school friend. I plan to make a DIY necklace out of the remaining beads that I will give to her when she gets older-since she liked it so much, lol.

Fitness was a New Year’s resolution of mine that I have semi-met. I was doing Taebo workouts at home a few days a week consistently for a couple of months and I have recently fallen off of the wagon. I do not like to work out in the house or at gyms. I prefer to be outside—running. Since the weather is becoming quite nice I will start a.m. runs tomorrow morning. I plan to run at least 3 days a week. For me, running is the ultimate workout. It tones my whole body in a matter of weeks (if I am consistent). My only concern with running is that my breast size has increased since I had my daughter. Therefore I am going to have to make sure the “girls” are nicely secured:)

This girl’s life is very complex, but it’s just the way that this girl loves it.

-Evelyn


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Vegetarian Chili and Polenta Cakes

Vegetarian Chili and Polenta Cakes

2 tbsp canola oil
One whole red onion diced
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup chopped onion
couple shakes of cayenne pepper
3 habanero peppers
5 serrano peppers
”             ”       ”  black pepper
”             ”       ”  paprika
”             ”       ”  salt
”             ”       ”  garlic powder
”             ”       ”  Mexican chili powder
1 can diced tomatoes (zesty chili)
1 can dark red kidney beans (drained)
2 cans chili starter beans
3/4 bottle of Heinz chili sauce
*half cup of milk (optional)

Heat pan of oil on medium/high and saute chopped onions, celery and mushrooms until browned. Chop two habaneros and two serrano and combine with vegetable mixture. Stir. Add all of the dry spices. Stir some more. Get a large chili pot ready, heat on medium. Spoon in the veggie mixture first, add all beans, and canned tomatos. Stir. Pour in the chili sauce. Stir some more. Let simmer on low for at least 30 minutes

*This is a really hot n spicy chili. The milk is something my husband uses to offset the spiciness in his own chili. Since I’m lactose-intolerant, I just deal with the heat.

Serves: 6

Polenta Cakes

I’m not making the polenta myself. I’ve bought a tube of Food Merchants Brand Organic Polenta (sun dried tomato garlic flavor.) Just cut this into half inch rounds and fry or bake.


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Bread Pudding

Bread Pudding

**See:  Better Homes and Gardens Bread Pudding recipe

Rum Sauce
4 tbsp butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 beaten egg yolk
2 tbsp water
1 tablespoon rum

Directions: Melt butter.  Add sugar, egg yolk, and water (stir immediately after adding egg yolk and make sure egg yolk is well beaten—to prevent it from cooking). Cook and stir 5-6 minutes until sugar is melted and bring to a boil.  Remove from heat and add rum.  Pour over bread pudding, serve warm.  Enjoy!


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Vegging Out

All of the vegetables that my husband, Noah and I shop for are not being ingested by us. They are going to our rabbit, Dobbie. Our bunny child requires one bunch of curly kale, two bags of spring mix salad, one bag of carrots, and one small bunch of curly parsley. . . all in a week’s time. Do we eat any of that? Rarely.
 

Dobbie, Christmas ’10

That’s why I’m taking a page from Dobbie’s book and going vegetarian during this year’s Lenten season. From Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday, I won’t be eating meat. Crazier things have been practiced for 40 days and 40 nights. I think I can do this. I will need to prepare myself with meal plans and fun dishes, just so I don’t run the risk of getting bored with my diet. Oh, wait! Did I mention that I’m lactose-intolerant? Things are damned close to getting vegan! I will eat eggs though. Also, on my “mini Easters” I will have fish.

I’m hoping this 40 days will be the start of changing my diet and lifestyle. I’ve toyed around with the idea of giving up meat for a couple of years, finally I feel like I got the balls to do it. I think I’m going to get started with something simple like a vegetarian chili. When I’ve got it all straightened out. You’re all getting a recipe. Woot woot!

Carrot sticks and Peas,

charish