Sunday, March 30, 2008

Steve cooks Breaky!

Bob's Redmill Waffles with blueberry maple syrup compote

This morning we have alot to do. Laundry is going round and round downstairs, the vacuum is buzzing. It seems there is never enough time on the weekend to do 'what you want' and 'what you need' to do. Yesterday we went for a beautiful walk at Princess point with some friends and their doggies, and today Steve's sisters family is coming to town.

But this morning is special, because Steve made waffles. Fluffy and perfectly formed.

This is a photo of his decadent pile. Eaten double-decker style with warm blueberries popping with every bite. I will only have one, with 2 poached eggs on top. I don't want to eat too much, because I really want a bowl of left-over Fish chowder for lunch, so I have to save room!

Salmon and Tilapia fish chowder
Dairy Free!

This soup was based upon this recipe by Michael Scott, but I adapted it for my budget and dairy free needs. Almond Milk and Silk (soy milk), made this deliciously creamy soup. And i didn't have to worry about it being thick enough, because the recipe calls for a baking potato to be grated in, so I grated in 2 potatoes, for extra thickness.

I just really wanted to eat fresh Dill weed!

Have a great Sunday!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Lets ketchup on past photos!

Spinach and tofu stuffed shells with pesto and rice cheese

I was very fortunate to find out I was dairy intolerant while working in a health food store, where there was an abundance of dairy-free choices and an abundance of people who know what its like. Rice cheese found at Fortinos in the health food section fridge, "Rice" brand Cheddar flavour, is pretty good. I don't care for vegan cheese, I'm not vegan. Earth brand is my new favourite, with a nacho flavour soy cheese that is outta this world!

Impromptu Quinoa stew in a big crusty roll-bowl with a side of avocado

Baked salmon with mango salsa and a side of avocado

Steve saw a recipe for this in a magazine and it really spurred his interest. Unfortunately the salmon was supposed to be dressed up alot more ( we were lacking in ingredients) , but the salsa part of the recipe turned out great! And if avocados are ripe we eat them often!

Nostalgic Dirt Pudding

My Mom used to make this when I was a kid and it was the greatest thing ever! Now that I am all grown up and dairy free, I had to make some changes but this first attempt was a hit! Our friend Jessalyn was having a birthday party so it just seemed right.

Dirt Pudding Ingredients:

- Soy chocolate pudding (already prepared in individual cups, in health food section)
- Nutri-whip
- Chocolate cookies, crumbled
- Chocolate covered peanuts, raisins
- Mini butterscotch chips
- Gummy worms, snakes
- Clear plastic cocktail glasses
- Any other creepy crawly things you'd find in the dirt. Plastic spiders etc.


- Chill a medium sized metal/glass/ceramic bowl in the freezer for about 10 mins, while you are preparing the rest of the ingredients. (This is for the Nutri-Whip)

- Depending on how many you are serving, set the cups out in rows. This will make it fast and easy to do them all at the same time.

- Whip the Nutri-Whip in the chilled bowl, on high speed, until light and fluffy.

- Place a gummy worm in the bottom of each cup, then layer a little of each ingredient. Make sure each ingredient touches the side of the cup, this will make a cool layered effect you will see through the cup.

- This is an excellent activity to do with kids. Prepare all ingredients in separate bowls and have them dig in!

The worm at the bottom is a final surprise!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Food is in Camoflage!

Food has always been the centre of the world for me.

And still is, I should add. What should I eat, when , how much? My attraction to food goes far beyond Love and sometimes into the depths of hate.

Being a curvy, mid 20's girl. I do not feel the same pressure I did in high school for a slim body that looks perfect in anything from sweat pants to 'skinny jeans'. But those years of worry are still camped out in my brain influencing my opinions of myself even today!

More to the point, FOOD has given me my shape today. It is only over the past 5 years that I have learned of the plague of white flour and sugar that found its way into my system. So today, when I slave away at the gym 5 days a week, I am battling against years of built up weight. Sometimes I feel like saying "Where do I begin?" there is just so much to lose! Then I slap myself, and say "Thank god my biggest worry is how big my butt looks in pants" I have been 'blessed' with a healthy body and a healthy lifestyle.

Then why is it, I worry about food? Because it makes me... curvy.

If you want to be healthy today, on a minimum wage salary, you have to be educated. If I had to guesstimate, I'd say I spend at least 6 hours a day, reading, learning and practicing a healthy lifestyle.

FOOD, is in camouflage!

The camouflage is the packaging. And everything that is packaged, has been handled, processed in some way which takes time. Time is the enemy of freshness, so some man made ingredient usually gets sprinkled in.

Think about it, you are an animal. If you put something into your body that nature didn't make, than how is your body going to know what the hell it is? If it doesn't know what it is, it can treat it as poison, in turn releasing a series of side effects which you may not even notice. Like, energy loss, indigestion, fatigue, headaches etc. You may experience these effects all the time, would you ever link them to what you just ate?

What is bubbling away in your tummy right now?

These poisons have really fluffy names too, like Splenda! Doesn't it just roll off the tongue? You know all those ingredients you can't read on the label? Well if you're over the age of 12 and you can't pronounce something that is in your pudding cup, then its "poison". Its Man made, no good, skip it! Go to Google, type in Dairy free chocolate pudding, find one, get the ingredients, make it. ENJOY. Wow, that was way harder and involved more dishes then pulling off the lid of a jello cup. And here lies another stumbling point, and road block for those who say "I can't cook" or "I don't have time" Make time, its your fuel we are talking about!

I always had loads of problems with my tummy, which spurred my interest in learning about food in more depth. But what about those iron gullets out there, that find anything under the sun edible and good food? Those folks fuel the grocery store aisles! They buy the quick microwave meals, the Omega Fat infused Oreo cookies and forgo the ingestion of Vitamins or supplements, because 2 slices of Wonder bread have added vitamins and minerals, eat those instead!

I feel so strongly about eating the right foods, and yet I can say that I ate an A&W veggie burger and fries the other week and it was DELICIOUS! Crap! If this was a game show I'd be voted off for joining the other alliance and leaving my healthy food alliance behind!

Most animals won't eat crap they are not supposed to (some dogs excepted, Sherman, my parents dog, ate Venetian blinds once or twice) But seriously, why are we a species that shoves anything that smells good into our mouths? Why do we market food that is killing our species with obesity? On Wikipedia, I found this Stat. on mindless eating "People make nearly 20 times more daily decisions about food than they are aware of (an average of around 250 each day)." That's a huge amount of thinking, why not make those daily decisions positive ones!
Lets band together with the other millions of people who know that the "green health check" symbol on packaged food in bull s*%t! and that all other food propaganda in nonsense!

Grow a garden or join a community garden! Limit your Aisle shopping and stick to the produce section. Stock your pantry with spices, beans, grains, caned tomatoes etc. so you always have the ability to cook, and you aren't reaching for the take-out menu!
I think one of the major goals in my life is to learn as much as I can about healthy living and practice it every day. My mantra will be "What goes in my body feeds my mind, body and soul"

Here's to seeing through the Camouflage!

Cartoons Compliments of Shoe Box, a division of Hallmark.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Things are coming up Milhouse!!!

So yesterday was my 2 year Anniversary with Steve!

It was a day of love and cuddling, and staying off the roads, which were starting to resemble sled-dog trails.

Usually I would jump at the chance to cook a really great dinner, but it just felt like a night to brave the wild weather and walk to a restaurant. Some Internet surfing and 2 phone calls later, our first 2 "NEW" restaurant choices were closed 'due to bad weather'. But never fear, the sushi place was open, just a few blocks away, crisis adverted!

It was a bundled walk but we made it, and warmed up with warm sake. Which Steve did not particularly like. None the less, he made a valid effort to finish the almost 4 ounces.

This night was just like any other night, because I spent it with my Best Friend, Steve. Every moment we spend together is better than the last. I have been 'blessed' in a way, in some shape or form, with the best company, love and friendship that could ever be found. There are a dozen cheesy songs, and a hundred hallmark cards that I could quote to express my feelings for Steve, but he knows them. And that is all that matters

Later that night, while enjoying a bottle of our favorite wine, Geurtz something or other, I had to mention that Coltrane should really be part of this event.

This little 'monkey man' has captivated my heart for the last 2 years as well. Though it took a little longer to get to know him than Steve, the language barrier never seemed to be a problem... I can meow really good now!

This is just a little blog to commemorate this day and the giant garden of Love I have for Steve.

Happy 2 year Steve! I Love You!