Mini Chefs

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Hellooooooooooooooooo!  <—(say it like Seinfeld)  How has Thursday been treating you?  Of course my days are all mixed up since Monday was a holiday.  I can’t believe tomorrow is already Friday!  (Hooray!) It was a hot nasty afternoon here in T to the X- my Corolla went up to 106°!!!  Ugh.  The heat makes me tired and somewhat cranky, but I’ll get over it.  Only two or three more months to go of this lava hot weather!  *cringe*

As usual, I have plenty of food pics to share.  Yesterday’s breakfast was particularly BA:

I toasted an Ezekiel sprouted grain english muffin, spread it with natural peanut butter and a good drizzle of honey, dotted it with raisins, and then topped with some fresh apple slices and a sprinkling of cinnamon.

It was so good!  Chewy from the muffin and raisins, creamy and sweet from the peanut butter-honey combo, and pleasingly crunchy and crisp from the apple.  NUMS.

Yesterday afternoon I whipped up another quick smoothie for me and B.  I threw two frozen bananas, a cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk and a big handful of frozen unsweetened cherries into the blender.  That was it!  The result was a creamy, smooth, refreshing, sweet cherry delight that was like a cross between ice cream and sorbet:

 

So tasty.  Frozen, slightly over-ripe bananas are MAGICAL!  Skittles and rainbows and all that stuff.  ;)

Last night’s dinner was rockin’, too.  It was B’s night to cook, so he bought ingredients to make shrimp, avocado and tomato paninis.  We hadn’t had paninis in forever!  We piled toasted multi-grain, garlic-rubbed ciabatta rolls high with smashed avocado, thick tomato slices, a generous handful of peppery arugula and sautéed lemon-pepper shrimp.  We slathered the outsides with a little Earth Balance spread, then put the ol’ panini press to work.  So easy, yet so good

It was glorious!

Oh panini, where ya been all my life?

*chomp*

For breakfast this morning I had OOIAJ for the second time, and it did not disappoint.  :D  OOIAJ make getting down to the end of a nut butter jar an exciting breakfast event.  (I’m not kidding.)

Last night I added the following into an (almost) empty Smucker’s all-natural creamy peanut butter jar:

  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 T. chia seeds
  • 1/2 a tiny banana
  • agave nectar and cinnamon, to taste

Gave everything a good stir, put the lid back on and let the jar hang out in the fridge overnight.  This morning all I had to do was grab a spoon and feast!

Peanut butter-banana OOIAJ rock:)

Last but not least, here is today’s lunch:

An oat bran pita spread with Vegenaise and an absurd amount of dijon mustard, stuffed with zucchini rounds, mushrooms, arugula, thick chunks of red bell pepper and a leftover Mexican Chipotle Field Roast Grain Meat Co. sausage.  I spent a good chunk of the afternoon doing homework while waiting for my oil to be changed at the car dealership, and I was ravenous by the time we got home.  This hit the spot!  :D

***

Today I rocked Legs & Glutes and it about killed me dead.  B and I finally cracked open the STS Users’ Guide, and we plan to start the 12-week program very soon!  It looks very user-friendly and straightforward, so I’m anxious to take my 1 Rep Max tests and get PUMPED!  :D  I definitely want to begin the program before my full-time fall semester starts at the end of August.  We shall see.  In the meantime, the Pyramid Series has been kicking my butt, and I have a million other workouts to keep me busy until I’m ready to start STS.

Speaking of workouts, I should be getting Cathe’s new series the first week of September (estimated ship date is August 31st)!  WOOHOO!  I can’t freaking wait!

***

Dinnertime for me and the kids had become a dreaded time of war for everyone involved.  My kids eat relatively healthy foods, but they’re both pretty picky, and lately O has decided that his main mission in life is to piss me right the eff off by completely refusing to eat anything that I fix for him.  He’ll play with his food (but not eat it, of course), stick his tongue out and make little annoying baby sounds (this kid can speak in full sentences, so don’t be fooled!), or he will take one giant bite and hold the food in his mouth for what seems like hours (in reality it’s probably more like 5 minutes, but dayum, kid!).  I let myself get too worked up over this, which in turn makes O want to piss me off even more, and it got to the point where every dinner would end with me getting in his face with whatever was on the menu that night and demanding that he take a bite, one bite, TAKE A BITE, TAKE A BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIITE!

I am ashamed.

(TAKE A BITE!)

In an effort to remedy the situation, I decided to do something I should have done a long time ago: get both kids cookin’ with me in the kitchen.

I put this off in the past because with a crazy, me!me!me!me!, tantrum-prone 2-year-old and an antsy, know-it-all, independent 5-year-old, I assumed that preparing a meal together would be a complete disaster, one that would end with me sticking a fork into my eye socket.  Alas, this week I made it a point to start getting them involved in the kitch, and to my disbelief and amazement, it has pretty much worked like a charm in terms of getting them to actually eat their freakin’ dinner without me having to channel Satan.

When I say cooking, it’s not like we’re throwing down with Julia Child, or anything like that.  We’ve been making kid-friendly things like whole-wheat pita pizzas, toasted mini whole-wheat bagels with cheese, multi-grain toast with all-natural peanut butter, honey and raisins, and whole-fruit smoothies.  The kids can dump frozen fruit into the blender, they take turns sprinkling cinnamon-sugar on their applesauce, they can layer cheese on a bagel and spread tomato sauce on a pita.  I’m also using this as an opportunity to discuss good food choices and the nutritional highlights of whatever we’re preparing that night.  Much to my delight, E usually loves to hear about the healthy fats found in natural peanut butter, the fiber in whole-grain bread, the calcium in their smoothie.  And when the time comes to eat, they do just that- no arm twisting, hair pulling or bribery needed.  I’ve made it a point to make a huge production out of it ad nauseam (“What a big boy!  You made that delicious dinner all by yourself!  Great job, guys.  You are excellent cooks!”), and this seems to distract my youngest enough that he is too proud of himself to remember to be a total pain in the ass and not eat.  I just wanted to share this with you all, in case you’re going through something similar.  Kid food issues can be pure hell, and this is really working nicely for us at the mo’.  :)

Of course, this could all take a turn for the worse tomorrow, when I try to get them to make (and eat) ants on a log.

***

I never posted the menu for this week because the Internet was down over the weekend!  Tonight we had leftover Mediterranean Quinoa Salad with more grilled salmon (it was excellent the second time around!).  Here’s what the rest of the week looks like:

Friday: Spinach, mushroom, onion and black olive frittata with multi-grain toast.  B scored some local, free-range eggs from a co-worker of his dad’s who has chickens!  I’ll be sure to let you know how eggs from happy chickens taste!  We will be buying our eggs from this guy for as long as he’ll let us.  :D  I think that is the coolest.

Saturday: Dinner out!  We’re trying to find a good vegetarian restaurant to go to before heading to a local arts and music festival.

Sunday: Snobby Joes plus a side salad.  I am seriously stoked to try these!!!  (B is such a trooper!)

***

I’m off to watch The Shield!  Have a good night and I’ll see ya tomorrow.  :D

ooxx,

Sara

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2 responses »

  1. You know – I have a panini attachment for this waffle iron / cheese toastie maker thing I have at home. I’ve never used it… I really should! I’m always so jealous of yours because they look so awesome! I have some sun-dried tomatoes at home. I’m thinking goats cheese, sun-dried tomatoes, rocket and a rosemary dressing… oh yeah!

  2. Totally! Paninis are a crazy-good way to use leftover veggies, meat or seafood. Just add your fixins, a complimenting condiment and/or cheese (smashed avocado works amazingly well with just about everything!), butter the outside of your bread and press away- dinner is done in under 10 minutes. I have an actual panini press, but we used to use foil-wrapped bricks and they worked nicely. That goat cheese-sun dried tomato combo sounds INCREDIBLE! :D

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