Lately

Aloha everyone! How was your week?
I hope your week was less hectic than mine. I’m so busy now that I’m starting to work again. That’s 6:00-9:00 twice a week. Add that to loads of volunteering, school, exams, and studying for SATS. All that on top of skating and aerial silks! Did I mention I also have to squeeze in some time to, ummmm… sleep? ๐Ÿ˜‰
Yup, I’m BOOKED! My only worry for not getting a volunteer position at the local hospital? That I won’t have enough time to make a committment. I know it’s just a few hours a week, but those hours do matter in the end. However, volunteering at the hospital will be one of my #1 priorities – I will definitely make time for that. ๐Ÿ˜€

Ahem! Sorry! Tangent! (trig is on my mind too).

So… the past few days have been good to me. Oh! Yesterday, my mom and I made a DEE-licious lemon yogurt cake from scratch! There’s nothing better than spending a Friday evening baking with Mommy. โ™ฅ We used this recipe by Whole Foods, and used 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest instead of almond extract (don’t have it). It turned out amazingly well. Anything lemon-flavoured has my approval! The crust that formed on top and on the sides was definitely the best part. This lemon cake didn’t crumble and have that melt-in-your-mouth texture of the lemon pound cake my mom and I made a few months ago. Probably because this recipe ditched a cup of butter and used plain nonfat yogurt instead! Nonetheless, I loved the cake – it was tender yet chewy and not overly sweet. We had to buy a bag of cane sugar just for this recipe, and it was worth it. I guess you could also use granulated sugar, but why? Ours was from TJs. ๐Ÿ˜›

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Anyways, here’s a classic Mom dinner from two nights ago.

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We’ve got broccolette sauteed with mushrooms and baby scallops (so good, and they impart a sea-salty taste to the whole dish, LOVE).

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Under that? Onion scrambled eggs with extra pepper! So good. I love getting the big chunks of egg, especially when the insides are still a little runny. O-M-Good.

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Lastly, we have Mom’s classic hong-shao {braised} chicken. Oh-so-tender chicken thighs are simmered for HOURS in a flavourful mixture of soy sauce, garlic, star anise, red chili peppers, and scallions. Mom also adds daikon (white carrot, like we say in Chinese) and regular ‘ole orange carrots. They literally become pillows of soy sauce – they are SO tender, and even better the next day. I loved this meal for leftovers at school! And gosh – check out that toasted sesame. Don’t leave it out! Adds a ton of flavour.

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Served on white rice. I had these three dishes over quinoa for lunch. No pics because I’m forgetful! :mrgreen: But wow, my mom sure can COOK! GO MOM GO!

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The next day, I had oatmeal with blueberries and blackberries. Followed the usual recipe, and topped it with an amazing local cinnamon honey from Costco. After I finished the berries, I topped it all with granola. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Lunch was a salad.

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I was inspired by this recipe, by Kristin at Iowa Girl Eats. She inspired me to try spaghetti squash, maple-soy salmon, simple stuff like almond butter, fried trout on a pilaf (15 mins!), healthy wraps, oatmeal with sliced banana, cranberries, and almonds, coconut chicken curry (hey, I could have a bowl of this right now โ˜บ ), and even Caesar salad! LOVE that girl. What did I eat before I started reading her blog? :O

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Anyways! This salad was super. 50/50 spring mix + spinach topped with blueberries, blackberries, goat cheese, and pecans. Dressing was simple: extra virgin olive oil + balsamic vinegar + Dijon mustard + honey + salt + pepper. I usually just make enough for one serving.

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I had the same thing again for dinner the next day. So yummy! This time, the dressing had half of a microplaned clove of garlic. Usually I don’t eat raw garlic because of the bad breath – but this time it was totally worth it. I may have been breathing fire for a whole night (sorry Seline) but… it was worth it! I wouldn’t do half a clove next time though. It was too spicy!

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The cinnamon-honey and butter roasted pecans that I baked also rocked my socks off. I’ve been eating them for a snack and using them to top my salads/oatmeal/yogurt. I literally JUST walked into my kitchen and grabbed three pecans to nibble on. ๐Ÿ™‚ The cinnamon-honey on top is to die for. It goes with the flavour of the pecans perfectly. I followed IGE’s recipe, but made a few teeny changes. What you can (and should) do is microwave cinnamon-honey (or regular honey if ya don’t have any) with butter until melted. Use a 2:1 ratio. If you have 1 tablespoon cinnamon-honey, use 1/2 tablespoon butter, etc. Mix with pecans until coated, spread ’em out on an oiled baking tray and bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees until toasty, then remove to a plate to let cool. Make a lot, because these will go FAST!

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One regret – I didn’t add grilled chicken or fish. I was hungry again at 10:00pm, even though I thought this would be enough. Even though I had two three slices of lemon yogurt cake, my tummy was grumbling before bed! ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

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Does IGE’s salad look like mine? ๐Ÿ˜€

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Today’s breakfast was… interesting. I opened the fridge to find that the milk expired TODAY – and I used it. Come on, I was desperate for oatmeal and there is no way in heck I’m using water to cook my beloved rolled oats. So expired milk it was! Turned out really well – I didn’t detect a trace of sourness. Topped with almond butter, those amazing pecans, blueberries, and toasted coconut (skillet).

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In case you’re wondering… it’s 7:00 pm now. I just had a pretty FABULOUS dinner that was seriously pretty incredible. Homemade pizza! I tried to make it like my all-time favourite Mediterranean pizza from Boston Pizza, but it wasn’t even close. What the whole fam made was was basically whole wheat pizza dough from our local bakery, topped with spicy tomato pizza sauce, cheese (mozzarella AND goat cheese!) and some of my fave veggies (mushrooms, etc.!) Sounds totally scrumptious, but I thought it was a little too bread-y. The dough, even though I rolled it out really thin, puffed up quite a bit. I also think the cheese (from Costco, I think it’s Kraft?) was of a terrible quality. The mozzarella, instead of melty on and into the pizza, simply became a blanket. I like my cheese melted into the pizza. I totally want to spill all the deets, but you’ll have to wait and see! Will post about this ‘za soon.

Now, I’m chomping on an amazing dessert. Greek Gods honey yogurt + frreeesssshhhhh blueberries and blackberries + chunks of that lemon yogurt cake that I mentioned above! Sprinkled with chia seeds. Mmmm! Made this dessert a la this recipe. The best bites? Definitely the blueberries. I haven’t had blueberries in way too long! These, from Costco, are my favourite kind – they’re big, super sweet, and hard. I like the hard blueberries the best! I’m still eating this dessert as I type this right now… I wish this could last forever. Go berries + yogurt + crumbled cake!

And… I should really be moving on to my homework now. I can’t wait until tomorrow’s breakfast – I’ll be making healthy pancakes with mashed banana AND berries. OMG! ๐Ÿ˜€ (And yes, I am aware that I just ate… and that I’m totally stuffed!)

Last thing: check THESE out! I know I say this a lot, but OMG! Flourless, butterless muffins (that are mostly sweetened naturally!) with a chocolate middle? I have to try this recipe soon. Simply Scratch is one of my favourite bloggers – I’ve made her super tasty chili-garlic roasted broccoli before – read all about it on this post!

Okay! I guess that’s it for now. Bye! Have a wonderful Sunday everyone. ๐Ÿ™‚

7 thoughts on “Lately

    1. Did Mrs. Iowa Girl Eats just comment on my post? I must be dreaming! ๐Ÿ˜‰
      Thanks for stopping by. I check your blog every day because I’m always on pins and needles waiting for your next recipe – but I also love reading the old ones too. Your quinoa recipes are amazing, and can you believe I’ve never had a green monster before?! I’ll let you know when I do – which should be SOON! ๐Ÿ™‚ Have an awesome day!

      Like

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