Weekend Discoveries v. 3

A wonderful weekend came and went;

As always, I ate to my heart’s content

These edible discoveries I now shall vent

During this perfectly tempered NYC weekend, I discovered…

-When you whine about NYC weather, it refutes your bad mouthing with a beautiful 70 degree weekend—necessitating you to, once more, revert back to iced coffee.

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No complaints.

-When an Egg McMuffin craving cannot be kicked because (a) it is past 11 a.m. or (b) you don’t want your tombstone to read “Death By Golden Arches,” a homemade version works nicely.IMG_1150

Where there’s a will, there’s a way. WW english muffin toasted; 2 egg whites microwaved (never did this before! they were good!); ketchup & an American deli slice. 99.9% less likely to be your cause of death than McD’s version.

-Another homemade sandwich of sorts: Graham cracker ice cream sandwiches > those incredible little stick-to-your-fingers chocolate ones from your childhood.

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This is saying a lot because those were great.

-Roasted figs with roquefort and maple syrup: !!!!!!!!

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I followed this recipe but substituted maple syrup for the honey. This flavor combo was muy bueno and gave me a new appreciation for figs.

-Another figgie foray: Frozen figs.

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I discovered this unique approach to fig consumption from Lynn. Me gusta. Frozen figs are the new frozen grapes.

-Zucchini cheetahs + sun-dried tomato tapenade=happy together.  IMG_1161

-SAVORY OATS!

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I know I’m really behind on this one, but I’d never made savory oats until this weekend. However, I can say with fair certainty that I’m addicted.

I followed Bittman’s approach to savory oats for my premiere bowl. I used 1/2 cup Irish oats cooked in 1 cup water, seasoned with 2 tbsp. soy sauce & salt. On top went spinach sauteed in garlic & soy sauce, grilled mushrooms and roasted red peppers.

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I kid you not, I have never enjoyed a bowl of oats so much. I don’t know why it took me so long to test the savory oats waters because I’m a steadfast salty over sweet girl. I do fear that I will now—with dual loves for sweet oat breakfasts and savory oat dinners—OD on oats. Sort of looking forward to it.

-My first homemade veggie burgers!

Again, a little behind the pack on this one. But I’ve always had such love for Dr. P that I’ve foregone making my own.

I followed this recipe—only because it called for instant oatmeal. (I’m trying to work my way through a never-ending stash that I haven’t touched since discovering oat bran and irish oats.)

I used black beans instead of garbanzos, and brown rice instead of barley.

This was the mix before adding the veggies. I won’t lie; I had several uncooked bites, and they were delicious.

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I baked half, and pan-fried half.

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The baked took the cake.

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SO GOOD. I LOVED the soy sauce & brown rice combo. I’m proud of these because they were my firsts—but I definitely think I’ll outdo them once I experiment a bit. I really want to try this recipe using Soy Vay instead of soy sauce. Mmmm.

-Starbucks was incorrecto. I could definitely taste the difference between VIA and regular.

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I intensely dislike Starbucks brewed coffee, so I thought they both tasted nasty. But, if you are a Starbucks lover, VIA’s taste isn’t that different from the brewed garbage goods.

The rest of the weekend’s discoveries were made at yesterday’s Third Avenue Festival—a street fair in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.

I was accompanied by Miss Gigi and spent the day discovering that…

-She really does look like Dora.

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-Five-year-olds come up with hysterical reasons why you can’t do/eat things that aren’t of interest to them.

For example…

When I showed interest in giving these lonely masseurs something to do…

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Gigi said, “I don’t think that’s a good idea. They might break you.”

When I was looking at some ceramic, I was suddenly less delicate…

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Gigi warned me, “We should go now. You might break something. And then you’ll go to jail.

And lastly, when I suggested that we get some roasted sweet corn,

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Gigi—whose attention was more grabbed by the funnel cake & ice cream stands—explained that “since our parents let us have corn at home, we should eat other stuff while they’re not here.” (She doesn’t understand that I’m an adult; she frequently refers to me as a teenager. I don’t ever correct her.)

Oh, she also kindly advised me, “If you get corn stuck in your teeth, you’ll never find a husbamd.” Punk.

-I also learned that when you promise a kid a cupcake, you have to deliver.

So, if you forget about said promise and accidently get ice cream…

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…and are dealing with a sneaky 5-year-old who will down that ice cream

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…and THEN remind you of your cupcake promise, you have to get clever.

And find the world’s tiniest cupcake.

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As payback for her sneakiness (and that husband comment), I now present to you a highly entertaining Gigi Eats Cupcake montage:

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Proud to call her family.

Hope that helped move your Monday along—or at least made you laugh.

As Dora would say,  Buenos dias!

-Sarah

The Sandwich Plagiarist

On chilly days like yesterday—during which I will inevitably exude a little woe cold is me whining—the only thing that can pry me from the warmth of my comforter is the allure of a hot a mug filled (and refilled) with replacement warmth.

While I’m still not ready to reinstitute coffee art, I turned to several cups of rudimentary, expressionless coffee for my replacement warmth fix.

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I love holding hot mugs when I’m cold. I also have a weird habit of holding them against my face. I can’t remember who said this the other day, but thank you for making me feel like less of a freak for enjoying some warm ceramic to the cheek.

Criteria for breakfast: (a) delicioso, (b) efficient hypothermia alleviant and (c) apple-friendly (since I’m currently rolling in the galas).

Apple & Cinnamon Oat Bran

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In the mix: 1/2 cup oat bran cooked with 1 cup water, thinly sliced banana & cinnamon; whole gala apple chopped and microwaved for 90 seconds in almond milk & cinnamon; topped with whipped cream.

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I liked the addition of the banana to the oat bran, and I loved how apple-y my bran was with a whole apple! (I usually use half.) Oh, and the whipped cream was okay, too…

When I got snacky, I switched to my second favorite breed of manzana: el honey crisp.

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After playing with red hues for a bit, I did slice and consume it with a spoonful of almond buttah.

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I was really tempted to dive into one of my Barney Butter jars—but I still have about 3/4 left in my MaraNatha container. I’m weirdly anal about opening a new item when I’ve not yet finished my last (not that all ABs are created equal!). In the event that I break some boundaries, do nut butters go bad once opened? I’m not sure I’ve ever granted a nut butter a long enough lifespan to go bad… so I don’t think this should be a problem.

I think I drank 15 cups of tea yesterday. This is another thing I do when the weather takes it wintery plunge: OD on tea. During the summer, I probably consume—without exaggeration—20 cups of water a day. During the winter, this dwindles to ~2 cups; the other 18 get replaced with water’s warm and more flavorful offspring.

I love green tea, and this vanilla flavored one on the left is amazing. I switched it up with a cup or two of that raspberry jam on the right, but it wasn’t very good. I’m not big on fruity teas.

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When lunchtime rolled around, I’d already decided on my star ingredient.

Sun-dried Tomato Tapenade.

I made this on Wednesday during my salad dinner prep, using this recipe.

It was really simple, and essentially just involved boiling the sun-dried tomatoes and throwing the ingredients into the blender.

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The result was everything I’d imagined it to be: very sun-dried tomato-y and kalamata-y. Hate to repeat myself, but these are two of my absolute favorite things to eat. And they are very agreeable flavor companions.

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As my stomach’s brain started devising a tapenade-driven plan of attack, I polished off the last of my FSTG The Works chips.

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The perfect grainy compliment to my salty sun-dried tomato concoction.

There wasn’t much left in the bag, but that aluminum emptiness is always a sad sight.IMG_1089

During lunch brainstorming, a light bulb went off and I remembered the meal that first brought sun-dried tomato tapenade into my life.

It was one layer of the best sandwich I’ve ever tasted from Jettie’s in D.C. Jettie’s is a really cute and unfailingly delicious little sandwich shop in D.C..

I reasoned that I shouldn’t deprive myself of the best sandwich I’ve ever tasted just because I relocated to a Jettie-less city and decided lunch would be a D.I.Y. Hummock Pond sandwich.

Hm, I’ve pulled the D.I.Y. card two days, two lunches and two sandwiches in a row. What gives? My name is Sarah, and I am a sandwich plagiarist. I do love getting creative and making up my own flavorful concoctions—but sometimes I feel like the best things have already been created.

I sort of feel the same way about life musings. Hasn’t it all been said before? There are no Voltaires or Thoreaus “of today;” we simply do our best to regurgitate what’s already been said in a wittier, pithier, more modern tone. Maybe that’s just me. Maybe I’m just a sandwich plagiarist and a thought plagiarist traipsing around under the guise of an innocent 22-year-old New Yorker. [Insert evil laugh.]

Anyway, here’s my copycat D.I.Y Hummock Pond sandwich, which—in the name of being a proper plagiarist—I will rename:

Sarah’s 7-Layer Sandwich

Insert the following seven layers between two slices of toasted whole wheat bread.

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Layer 1: Slice of Jarlsberg swiss cheese (best swiss EVER!)

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Layer 2: Grilled, balsamic-marinated baby bella mushrooms

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Layer 3: Spinach sautéed in garlic

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Layer 4: Roased red peppers, warmed in your grill pan

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Layer 5: Black bean salsa

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Jettie’s sandwich uses black bean & corn salsa—which I’d strongly suggest using. I only had regular salsa and cooked black beans on hand, so I mixed 2 tbsp. of each together for a little makeshift bean salsa.

Layer 6: Sun-dried tomato tapenade!!! Be generous; this layer makes the sandwich.

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Layer 7: Another slice of jarlsberg, for a necessary abundance of melty cheese.

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The result:

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You didn’t think that was the money shot, did you?

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Perfectly packed with seven delectable layers.

The lighting was weird so here’s  a picture with the flash.

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OH MY GOD. Dear Jettie’s, I love you. Like, seriously, if I could marry the owner of Jettie’s, or Jim Halpert, I would be the happiest girl en el mundo!

If you have any semblance of love and respect for your tummies and taste buds, you will construct this beauty in the very near future…

Just as I was getting snacky, my Kashi sample finally came!

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I’m not much of a cereal eater. But when I do enjoy a bowl, I rarely eat it with milk (with the exception of Golden Grahams, Rice Krispies and Corn Pops—because all of those taste magnificent soggy). I opted for a greek yogurt mess.

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I loved Honey Sunshine! It sort of tasted like a honey-fied, healthified version of Cap’n Crunch!

When it came time for dinner, though it was World Vegetarian Day, I felt like I’d lagged in the protein department. So I made a big tuna salad mix to have on a bed of greens.

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In the mix: 3 oz. tuna, two heaping dollops of plain greek yogurt, 1/3 gala chopped, dried cherries, slivered almonds, very quick honey drizzle and krazy salt.

I had a few spoonfuls before plopping it onto my salad because it was SO good. I sort of just wanted to eat it out of the bowl, but that would’ve made my salad entirely undesirable.

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My salad base was 3 cups fresh spinach, English cucumber slices, sweet onion, celery and cherry tomatoes.

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With the star in the center of it all.

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I rarely use bottled dressing, but for some reason, my balsamic-honey combo didn’t sound good. I thought Cranberry Balsamic would go really well with the sweet tuna salad.

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Correcto!

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Perfect bite of the night goes to a cucumber slice harboring onion, cherry tomato and an all-inclusive dried cherry, apple and almond tuna dollop.

Mandatory dessert was a few bowls of popcorn, which I seasoned with garlic and chili powder.  IMG_1145

It was really good—especially the chili powder.

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But, a few handfuls in, I needed my sriracha. I’m a creature of habit. And hot sauce.

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Ok, so I wanted to pass along that bloggie award today, but, again, I’ve managed to write a book of post. Any advice on keeping posts shorter? I’m all about constructive criticism, so have at me :) .

I’m going to leave you with this EVIL picture that my cousin just texted me. He’s visiting my grandparents in Florida and being fed the best food by the world’s greatest cook, a.k.a. Nanny. When we visit, she puts out a wine & cheese, veggie & dip galore for lunch. I was considering going down with him this weekend—but decided to stay in NYC. Here’s to regret.

nanny poppy lunch

I’m missing out on: my adorable Nanny & Poppy, and what looks to be lots of fresh fruits, dippable veggies, hummus, guac, salsa, crab dip, FSTG, and Jarlsberg(!) among other cheeses. And that’s just what I spy from this iPhone pic.

I hope all of you are eating well like my Floridian familia and have fun weekend plans!

-Sarah

O Warmth, Where Art Thou?

It is currently 57 degrees in NYC, and I am FREEZING.

I don’t usually venture into colored fonts, but that blue was necessary to represent my current state of hypothermia. (I hope you’ve caught on to my tendency to exaggerate, and perhaps let it rub off on you…)

I am, however, cold enough that I’ve busted out my winter warm-me-ups. If I cared to commit social cyber suicide, I’d document and share my absurdly heinous—yet effectively toasty—outfit. Think the opposite of Ms. Snackie’s nuevo outfit segment, and more along the frumpy lines of camp sweatpants, a men’s North Face fleece and dead sexy wool socks. I know, I know, I’m such a catch.

I promise I do not don this get-up when I gallivant the streets of New York; its oversized, homeless-chic glory is reserved for immediate family, close friends and boys I’m certain won’t be scared off.

Anyway, I’ve been procrastinating writing this post for a solid two hours because looking at yesterday’s food pictures are worsening my hypothermic state :( . Alas, I kind of like you guys, so I’ll brave the cold and do this thing.

The chill-inducing photos to which I’m referring mostly concern my morning java. Wednesday’s weather was equally as arctic (read: 59 degrees) as today’s. But, when I woke up, it was pretty sunny out. And, sometimes, I foolishly assume beaming sun = warm weather. Not so, kiddies.

Going with my assumption that we were having one of those “taste of summer” fall days, I opted for the iced goods.

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Decked with whipped cream and cinnamon because I was still young and naive  disillusioned and giddy over the make-believe warm weather.

As I pondered breakfast possibilities and sipped on my summery beverage, my dear father came home from his run and informed me that it was (Kev Thug’s words) “freaking nippy out.” Initially I giggled because I’m an immature 12-year-old boy and think the word nippy is hilarious. Soon enough I was overwhelmed by a dark Zoloft cloud of sadness as I made the connection that:

  • nippy is not actually a provocative word—but rather a descriptor for cold weather
  • cold translates to my comfortably crisp fall day being a façade
  • nonexistent warm weather makes decadent icy drinks sort of uncalled for and instantly less enjoyable

Womp womp.

Optimist that I am, I got over it pretty quickly and allowed for my decadent morning to continue in warmer form.

Oat bran, mi amor.

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In the mix: 1/3 oat bran cooked with 3/4 cup water, salt, half of a thinly sliced banana and vanilla extract; on top: other half of the banana, PB&Co. Dark Chocolate Dreams and cinnamon.

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Dreamy. That was my last sample packet of Dark Chocolate Dreams—which I haven’t been able to find in stores. Bummer—but not sure I’m enough of a chocolate fiend to justify ordering a jar. Has anyone tried Better ‘N PB’s chocolate PB? I see it everywhere and am imagining that it tastes similar—si o no?

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At its best when the bowl’s a mess. I know most of you are oat bran pros, but for those who’ve yet to hop on the OB bandwagon, I highly recommend cooking thinly sliced banana into your bran. I’m really not a fan of cooking my oats with milk—but the melted banana adds the perfect amount of sweet creaminess.

I was pretty busy yesterday but I broke for a mid-morning snack plate of almonds, raisins and dried cherries.

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I think this is the only time in my life that I’ve portioned out nuts (as opposed to my standard hand-in-the-can approach) because the almonds hailed from a 100-calorie pack. Not sure where those came from because I never buy 100-calorie anything—but I may need to start taking the portioned-out approach with my nut-munching (I don’t know why I intentionally select word combos that provoke immature smirks & the insuppressible need to blurt out TWSS). I’m pretty sure I usually consume 4x what was in the 100-calorie pack on a non-indulgent snack session. Probably not advisable.

Throwing the gluttonous revelation on the backburner, I’d just like to proclaim my love for dried cherries. These ones are from a pre-packaged bag and very good—but the best ones I’ve tried to-date are from Publix’s organic section. I discovered them on vacation in Florida, and now I have yet another reason to resent the fact that there is no Publix in NY.

Onto lunch:

While deciding what I was in the mood for, I snacked on some creepy gray apples.

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…which weren’t actually creepy gray apples. They just happened to land on a fun-to-photograph red plate :) .

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This was a crispy gala with cinnamon. Shocker. Galas are my numero uno apple. I’ve got love for some others—specifically Honey Crisps, Pink Ladies and Braeburns—but I’m very picky about my apple’s texture. I need it to be really crispy, and I detest even slightly mushy manzanas. Through my many years of apple eatin’, I’ve found that galas are the most reliably crispy. With that, I conclude my apple thesis.

For lunch I decided to dig into my bagel stash and recreate a sandwich that sort of got me through college. As I’ve said, I’ve never been big on bagels. However, on my campus, the easiest and quickest fuel option was Einstein’s Bros Bagels. They offered one bagel option that grew to be my beloved regular because it was so packed in the innards department that the bagel itself wasn’t overwhelming for a ratio-driven freak like myself.

This life-changing bagel-wich was their Tasty Turkeyan asiago bagel with turkey, a load of fresh veggies and an onion & chive cream cheese.

I’m pretty sure my tendency to try smearing cream cheese on anything at least once roots from my love of le Tasty Turkey. I don’t think I’ve actually had one since my sophomore year, so I decided to have a D.I.Y. Tasty Turkey for lunch.

I opted for one of Kim’s onion bagels—toasted.

Sandwich assembly got a bit challenging. How was I to fit this…

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…plus turkey and cream cheese

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…on this?

Scaling back on my already-chopped abundance of veggies was out of the question. So I worked it out.

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On one side: turkey, cucumbers, onions and half the tomatoes. On the other: a generous smear of cream cheese and the rest of the toms.

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Piled high, but all the goodies fit!

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Not that they didn’t completely crowd the hole (TWSS, just in case you needed a reminder to watch The Office tonight… I also want to take this opportunity to say Hola and I love you to my amazing grandparents, who are avid readers and probably a little confused and grossed out by some of my distasteful humor.)

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I sometimes forget why I stop eating foods that I love so dearly. This sandwich was on point. If any of you love cream cheese as much as I do, I strongly urge you to get in the D.I.Y. zone and make this. (I do wish I’d had the onion & chive cream cheese, though.)

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The onion bagel was really good. The wheat is still my favorite so far because I like its texture best—but this packed some always-welcome onion-y flavor.

En route to a meeting I had yesterday afternoon, I dug into this (lo siento for the crinkled wrapper but I dug it out of my bag after devouring the bar).

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Clif Mojo Mixed Nuts! How have I never eaten this before!? The bar was essentially whole pieces of cashews, almonds and pecans—plus PRETZELS! I’m a little freaked out because I sort of feel like Clif tapped into my foodie fantasies and created a dream-come-true bar out of my most revered ingredients. I haven’t had any of the other Clif Mojos in a while but I think this might be my new favorite.

While preparing dinner, I ate my weight in figgies.

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Figs are legitimately gorgeous. You know they’d win the best looking superlative in fruit high school.

I currently have a loco amount of zucchinis, so dinner part I was one zucchini, sliced and grilled to charry perfection with some ketchup for dipping.

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This is my interpretation of cheetahs that have ODed on green monsters ;) . They were INCREDIBLE. I reeeeeally love charred zucchini.

So much so that I added an entire second grilled zucchini to an amazing grilled salad.

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In the mix: approx. 4 cups of fresh spinach (in hiding), one zucchini sliced and grilled, grilled onion, balsamic marinated roasted shrooms, grilled cherry tomatoes, hard-boiled egg white and black beans. Dressed in the standard celery salt and honey-balsamic uniform.

The salad had an entire layer of grilled zucchini—which made it easy to get some in every bite!

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And this beauty?

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One very thick slice of sweet onion—grilled on each side for 3 minutes (and clearly doused in balsamic).

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Last night’s perfect bite: a little spinach (just because it was there), shroom, cherry tom, zucchini, beans and egg. In other words, almost every ingredient in the salad pushed onto a fork.

I don’t know how many times I can profess my love for grilled veggies in salads before you start tuning me out—but the combo is SO GOOD!!!

I was really full, but lately I need something post-dinner. I’ve never been a dessert person, and I’m not sure when this little habit came to fruition. But, somewhere along the line, I’ve developed a “what’s next?” attitude to dinner.

At least last night’s next was healthy—albeit summery and probably not the most effective remedy for my hypothermic condition…

Creepy gray watermelon.

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Gotcha again.

Normal pink watermelon that wasn’t very vibrant or photogenic (probably because it wanted to remind me that ‘tis no longer the season for H2o-melon).

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It was actually sweeter than any watermelon I had this summer, and muy delicioso—so there’s a little rebuttal to NYC’s decision to skip fall and dive head-first into winter weather.

Ok, this was the longest post ever. I’d intended to thank the lovely Whitney for an unexpected Kreativ blogger award—and pass it along to some of my favorite food blogistas. But, since I’m already on the verge of publishing a novel, I’ll save that for mañana.

Enjoy La Oficina tonight!

-Shivery Sarah

Fasting –> Fast Eating

I won la guerra (trans: the war) against WLW, and I’m back!

Let’s rewind to Tuesday morning before Windows Live Writer and I got into a little tiff over publishing this post.

I woke up FULL.

You know your dinner was a just a little too gratuitous when you wake up full the next morning. When you’ve been up for three hours and still feel like you’ve just finished Thanksgiving dinner? That, mis amigos, is a tell-tale sign that (a) you’re Jewish and (b) last night’s gratuitous dinner followed your observance of Yom Kippur. If you are a food-lovin’ Jew like I—and all Jews are inherently food lovers, right?—you followed your 25 hours of fasting with 25 hours worth of food packed into one meal. Wise? No. Delicious and deserved? Si. Eating in excess never tasted so good. I’m tempted to skip over the entire weekend’s eats just so I can re-live Monday night’s amazing meal, but I’ll give you a quick recap before jumping into the holy goods.

‘Twas not so much a weekend of discoveries. Deliciousness and indulgence seem more accurate descriptors, which la hermana and I welcomed with open arms mouths.

I’d fully intended on cheffing up something creative for Melissa’s first meal home, but the girl knew what she wanted. Chinese food. Namely, NYC Chinese food. I can’t blame her. When I was away at college in D.C., I always craved Chinese food during my visits home. Our nation’s capital simply does not do Chinese like New York does. In fact, D.C.’s take on Chinese is unfailingly underwhelming, formidably greasy and authentically inauthentic. This is not to say that I didn’t spend my freshman year devouring the greasy goods every weekend at approx. 3 a.m. But, a few years into my college career, still bitter that those 3 a.m. eats played a large role in the frosh 15, I decided to stop force-feeding myself MSG-laden garbage that I didn’t actually enjoy. I opted to only enjoy MSG-laden garbage when it hailed from NYC and tasted delicious enough to warrant the deterioration of my health ;) .

Phew, gracias for enduring that Chinese food-themed New Yorker holier-than-thou rant. We can get back to getting my sister fed on Friday night. I am not ambitious, talented or Asian enough to attempt creating homemade Chinese food on par with NYC’s offerings. So I gladly left dinner to the pros.

We ordered in from our go-to Sesame Chicken joint, 86 Noodles. Yea, there are so many Chinese restaurants in NYC that we have designated which ones to order from based on which dishes they prepare best.

I am usually a faithful chicken/tofu and string bean gal, but 86 Noodles does sesame chicken better than any other version I’ve tasted.

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We had some steamed dumplings along side, which were very good—but next to the sesame superstar, comparatively meh.

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I’m seriously tempted to write an ode to 86 Noodles’ sesame chicken, which infers that the mere sight of this delicacy triggers my wacky love endorphins. Which infers that you need this in your life a.s.a.p. Really, if you ever find yourself in NYC, I strongly urge you to put your healthy lifestyle on the back burner for a minute, and experience THE sesame chicken of all sesame chickens. And invite me, por favor.

Post dinn, we were fortunate enough to enjoy some interracial, clairvoyant cookies.

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Delicious indulgence continued throughout the weekend. Remember when I set out to bake something that might persuade my sister to stay in NYC forever? I brainstormed baked goods for hours before realizing that the answer was far simpler than any of the creations I’d conjured up in my cerebro (trans: brain).

PUPPY CHOW!

I used this recipe—maybe throwing a little more than 1 cup of chocolate into the melty mix.

I melted the butter, PB and chocolate together and then poured the mix over the Chex.IMG_0897

Then I shook the coated cereal in a big Ziploc bag with powdered sugar.

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Voila! The result…

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does not look so hot.

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But I promise you, this stuff is dangerously addictive. I am of that rare breed of people not obsessed with chocolate, and even I die for this stuff.

We made an admirable attempt at portion control…

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…only to discover that it’s rather easy to refill a bowl.

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In the end, all that was left was…IMG_0946

Oh wait, I lied. You see those crumbs in there?

La hermana didn’t let those go to waste either…

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PB & puppy chow toast? I am proud to call her my sister.

Let’s see, other weekend eats included:

Makeshift PB&J Glo bites!

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I’ve been dying to make these since I saw them on Angela’s site, and—since I haven’t had the time nor all of the ingredients—I seized the opportunity to create my ugly step-sister version of the real thing.

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Warm bran muffin topped with almond butter and raspberry preserves.

This was SO GOOD. I can only imagine what the first-class edition tastes like!

I also ventured into some makeshift penne a la vodka.IMG_0941

I’m not big on Italian food—mostly because it’s so carby and lagging in the veggie department. I love vodka sauce—but penne a la vodka never sounds appealing to me because it’s just pasta and sauce.

So, when my sister decided she wanted to order in penne a la vodka, I offered to create a veggified version.

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Whole wheat penne, grilled zucchini, peas, sauteed onions & mushrooms and garlic in vodka sauce. Melty mozz on top.

I’m an equal opportunity eater when it comes to my veggie to pasta ratio—so I loved that our D.I.Y. penne a la vodka hosted an equal amount of veggies and penne. So much better than the straight penne version. Even my carb-lovin’ sister agreed. 

Another delish D.I.Y. weekend eat was this veggie and shrimp stir-fry.

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And that brown stuff on top?

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The greatest homemade spicy peanut sauce ever!

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I don’t have a recipe because I got a little schizo in the kitchen and just started throwing things into the mix. I know the following players were involved: peanut butter, milk, honey, soy sauce, garlic, sesame oil, sriracha and hoison sauce.

This was amazing, and I promise I will do my best to re-create it soon and measure out what I’m throwing into the bowl.

Ok, this brings us to Yom Kippur. This is the Jewish high holy day of atonement, a.k.a. we don’t eat (if you’re conservative, you don’t really do anything) for 25 hours to atone the previous year’s sins.

My problem with the whole Yom Kippur thing is: I can’t really think, let alone atone, when I’m hungry. But I manned up and did it for the homeboy.

We began our fast at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday night. Upon waking up on Monday, only mildly hungry, I found UPS outside with two packages.

Is it wrong that Yom Kippur morning felt like Christmas morning?

Jennifer, the creator of Barney Butter, offered to send me some samples last week, and here they are!

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I only jumped on the almond butter bandwagon a few months ago, so I’m still in the process of figuring out what my go-to AB brand is. I’ve heard great things about Barney butter, and once my spoon gets well-acquainted with those jars, I’ll let you know what I think. Thank you so much, Jennifer!

Package numero dos: A massively generous box of goodies from the people at Food Should Taste Good! 

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If you haven’t realized, I love FSTG chips. I haven’t tried any of the flavors they sent—except for the sweet potato, which I didn’t love but am willing to give another chance—so I can’t wait to test the non-Multigrain/The Works waters! I’m thinking a full review, flavor ranks included, is in order. Gracias, Beth, for the amazing package!

These A.M. presents, logically, proved to be quite the double-edged sword. On Christmas morning, you get to tear open your presents and commence playing immediately. On Yom Kippur morning, I tore into my goods only able to observe their beauty and imagine their tasty potentials.

After pacing around the goods for a while, I eventually tuned out the foodie devil sitting on my shoulder, tempting me to dip one of those cinnamon FSTG chips into the crunchy AB.

I was proud of myself for not pulling an Eve because the rest of my fast was surprisingly easy.

(The same did not go for my dear sister, who definitely said “I feel like f*@#ing Gandhi” several times throughout the day…)

Come 7:30, I was more than ready to eat. Every Jewish family has their own tradition when it comes to breaking the fast. Most common is a big spread of bagels, lox and deli foods. My family usually breaks the fast with Chinese food, but since my sister and I had our fix earlier in the weekend, we did things a little differently.

Mediterranean! My sister and I decided that mucho pita and mucho dipping options sounded like the perfect way to gorge ourselves.

We went to a restaurant in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn—First Oasis. It was my first time, but the food was increible.

We started with a giant platter of falafel, hummus, babaganoush, greek salad and grape leaves.

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It sort of looks average-sized, but this was huge.

We also had AMAZING tahini.

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Side salads.

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And an unpictured limitless basket of pitas for all of those incredible dips.

This could be a biased statement since this was my first bite of food in 25 hours, but THIS WAS THE BEST GRAPE LEAF I’VE EVER TASTED.

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THE BEST BABAGANOUSH I’VE EVER TASTED.

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THE BEST BALL I’VE EVER TASTED… (I don’t even have to say it.)

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It was massive and covered in toasted sesame seeds—which took my love for falafel to new level.

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Smushed in a pita with some salad and tahini.

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10 minutes later…  IMG_0978

Yea. 25 hours of FASTING results in FAST EATING. And that was only our appetizer.

Los main courses:

Chicken Sauteed: Boneless pieces of chicken breast sauteed w/ tomatoes, onion, green peppers, eggplant in tomato sauce served w/ house rice and salad

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Mussakka: Fried eggplant, tomatoes, onion, green pepper, potatoes baked in tomato sauce w/ mozzarella cheese served w/ house rice.

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Vegetable Ouzi: Mixed vegetables, rice, raisins, and nuts baked in phyllo dough, served w/ cucumber yogurt salad.

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This was definitely my favorite. Check out the innards…

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The stars were the chickpeas, golden raisins and toasted cashews. Oooh my god, I love Mediterranean food.

I am declaring this the best break-fast ever. I legitimately could not move after this meal—and into yesterday morning. But it was so worth it.

If you fasted, how did you break your fast? If you didn’t, what would you want to eat after hypothetically fasting for 25 hours?

Ok, my dears, I think this post might erupt if it carries any more food porn. (Perhaps, that’s why Live Writer refused to publish yesterday?) I have a really busy week—a rarity in my current state of funemployment—but I’ll still be posting regularly.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

-Sarah

Sarah vs. Windows Live Writer

Not to pull the “my dog ate my homework” card, but Windows Live Writer ate my blogpost! We’ve been fighting all morning. And by fighting, I mean WLW won because it successfully swallowed my two attempts at writing (and re-writing) a weekend recap. Bully.

I have a busy day, and I have to run into the city now for a meeting—so I must surrender. But, Windows Live Writer, it ain’t over.

I’ll do my best to get this problemo fixed today and my weekend re-cap up tomorrow!

Til then, in lieu of eats, I leave you with some entertainment.

kev thug espana

That would be a picture of my dad, whom I’ve fondly dubbed Kev Thug, being force-fed a birthday shot in Spain.

I may or may not have celebrated my birthday in the same fashion earlier that month…

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…although I guess you’re not being force-fed when the shot’s in your hand.

Ah well…

Happy Tuesday!

-Sarah

W.E.D.

Feliz viernes, people! As much as I love to go out with a bang before my weekend hiatus, I have to make this a quasi-quickie because I just found out la hermana is coming home for the weekend! Why does that necessitate a quickie?

(1) I am really excited for her arrival and thus really hyper and thus really ADD and thus having mucho difficulty sitting still in front of my laptop.

(2) I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this, but my sister just so happens to be my #1 EPIC (Eating Partner In Crime). So, I have to (a) make sure we are locked and loaded with all of our favorite goods to ensure an epic weekend of eats and (b) bake an amazing welcome home treat, in hopes of exploiting her sweet tooth and convincing her not to go back to D.C. ;)

I’ll let you know how that goes…

Thursday was a WED. No, not a Wednesday, a Weird Eating Day. You may wonder, what exactly is a weird eating day? I classify any day that impedes my eating habits of choice (that’d be eating all of my meals and snacks in the most delicious manner possible) a WED. In a perfect world, I’d have the time and resources to eat what I want, when I want, all day, every day. But, just as there are war and famine in our imperfect world, there also exist WEDs. (I hope my obnoxious sarcasm translates here…)

In all seriousness, sometimes life interrupts making photogenic, creative eats. That’s a good thing, I think.

Thursday began as a Normal Eating Day.

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So normal, in fact, that you may have seen this breakfast bowl before. Well, not exactly. Yesterday’s breakfast was an apple variation of last week’s amazing peach crisp yogurt.

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In the mix: chopped apples warmed in the microwave for 90 seconds and topped with brown sugar and cinnamon; topped with 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt and honey; more cinnamon; topped with a 7 grain honey toasted TLC Kashi bar.

Again, I warmed the Kashi bar in the micro for 20 seconds. Again, it tasted like edible brilliance.

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SO GOOD.

The only thing abnormal about yesterday’s breakfast was the fact that it’s almost October, and I opted for iced coffee. By opted, I mean needed because it was 80 degrees and sunny. WWD-Weird Weather Day.

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But check out that frost.

Lunch continued on the normal and delicious path.

Grilled cheese and a New York deli half-sour.

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Half sours > full sours. I will not debate this.

Also, grilled mozzarella > standard grilled cheese.

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And, grilled mozzarella featuring roasted veggies > standard grilled mozzarella.

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Just some facts of life…

This was perfection pressed into sandwich form, enjoyed with some apples & cinnamon.

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I’ve yet to master the art of making my apples photogenic. I made an effort with the top portion of the plate but got lazy with the second half.

This is where my day took its WED turn. I had to head into the city for a surprise birthday party at 6 p.m. with a hot date, my fabulous fashionista of a best friend. Because said birthday party was at a bar—for a fellow fashionista—it was safe to assume that food would not be aplenty. A.k.a. dinner was not to be had.

In an attempt to not die of starvation (again, really hoping hyperbole & sarcasm translate), I ate another one of Kim’s bagels right before leaving.

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This was the blueberry flavor—half with cream cheese & jelly, half with smart balance. Loved the blueberry! I liked the texture of the wheat bagel better because it was a bit less dense—but blueberry wins for fun flavor!

I also packed an emergency provision…

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As expected, dinner came in liquid-form.

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Which, as usual, makes for more fun than food ;)

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Our blackberries got a little frisky—always a solid indication that fun was had :)

As were snacks…

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And eventually a late-night turkey sandwich “dinner.”

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Late-night turkey sandwiches always remind me of this.

On that note, I must tend to my baking duties.

I probably won’t post until Tuesday because I’ll be fasting Sunday-Monday for Yom Kippur. I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend. And to my Jews & Jewesses, I wish you a successful and reflective fast :)

-Sarah

Hypocrisy At Its Foodiest

I’ll get to that title in a little.

First, I present to you a little more Pleasantville photography, since it got such good feedback last time :)

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If you can’t tell, I love the color red. So much so that, when I was 13, I begged my dad to let me paint my room red. My dad—wisely considering that (1) I was a pubescently moody and sassy teenager and (2) red is known to invoke anger—denied me this decorative freedom. So now, a decade later and still red room-deprived, I channel my crimson attraction toward my food photography. If the Pleasantville pics creep you out, father dearest is to blame.

Now that I’ve professed my love for a color, let’s move along.

Yesterday morning I woke up with no idea what I wanted for breakfast. I hate uninspired mornings because I hate settling on something I don’t really want to eat. That said, I slowly (and not prematurely) sipped a big cup of coffee and enjoyed a soon-to-be-out-of-season dinosaur plum while I waited for breakfast brilliance to strike.

Well, brilliance never showed—but presents did!

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Muchos gracias to Kim Bensen, the creator and owner of Kim’s Light Bagels, for sending me such a generous sample package of her 110-calorie bagels to review! After losing over 200 pounds, Kim, a self-proclaimed bagel lover, couldn’t find a healthy, good-tasting bagel that fit into her maintenance plan. So, she created her own. I’ve been e-mailing with Kim to set up an interview so I can give you all some insight into the woman behind bagel :)

Once I try all of the six flavors, I’ll write up a full review. But, for now, I’ll let you know what I think on a flavor-to-flavor basis.

I decided to use one of Kim’s wheat bagels for the basis of my still unbeknownst breakfast.

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But before I divulge how I dressed it up and what I thought of the bagel, let me address the title of this post.

Yesterday was a day of foodie hypocrisy—from start to finish.

As a New Yorker, I always feel sacrilegious when I tell people that I don’t really like bagels and pizza. Who doesn’t like bagels and pizza? Especially NEW YORK CITY bagels and pizza. I think it’s because I’m such a fan of the innards of my eats (innards sounds so gross) that I don’t like super bready-based foods that take away from the stars of the show. For example, on a bagel, I like to taste the cream cheese more than the bagel. The same goes for the cheese on my pizza. And don’t get me started on sandwiches. I do not like sandwiches on focaccia or any bulky breads because they mess up my innards:outtards(?)ratio of preference. God, I sound like a bread diva, but my stomach just has a keen perception of its likes and dislikes ;)

That said, I ate bagels and pizza yesterday. And, understatedly, liked them both. First, the bagel.

I topped half of a toasted Kim’s whole wheat bagel with peanut butter and the other half with raspberry preserves. Atop both halves went an overripe banana, mashed to perfection.

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Overripe naner=amazing spread.

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Uncharacteristic of my PB-lovin’ self, I liked the mashed banana & preserves half better!

As for Kim’s Light Bagels, I think I may have met my bagel match. Because the bagel was light—and by nature a bit flatter and smaller than your average NY monstrosity—its doughiness wasn’t overwhelming and gave my toppings their due spotlight. I really liked the texture of the wheat bagel, and I think it’d be a great sandwich base. I can’t wait to try out the other flavors and figure out if yesterday’s bagel loving was a one time fling or the start of something special… (Why is it so easy to romanticize food? Maybe that’s just me…)

Lunch was Tuesday night’s Mediterranean potato salad—which was exponentially more flavorful after marinating overnight. It took everything in me (read: the fact that my contractor was over) not to lick the bowl.

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Alongside I had half a whole wheat pita stuffed with hummus and roasted corn. I LOVE this combo.

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‘Twas a perfect way to make a dent in my Sabra stash. (P.S. I got a bajillion comments and emails inquiring into exactly how I acquired so much Sabra. Well, the hummus hoarding was not my doing. As is the case with my attraction to red-hued photography, my father is to blame—or in this case, thank.)

When I got a little snacky, I busted out some rice cakes to satisfy my voracious popcorn craving.

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Have you ever tried Mother’s rice cakes? I found these at WF a few months back, and it was love at first bite. I’m not usually a buttah-girl, but these are GOOD.

Onto foodie hypocrisy #2 of el dia. Pizza. I’ve seen these pita pizzas popping up on some of your blogs—and, in the spirit of trying to cleanse myself of my usual pizza and bagel-hating blasphemy—I decided to try ‘em out.

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Hello, my name is Sarah, and I LOVE pizza. Well, pita pizzas, anyway.

Seriously, check out those toppings.

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Veggie Packed Pita Pizza:

  • Lightly brush one side of a whole wheat pita with EVOO and season with salt. Bake for 6 minutes at 375 degrees. Brush & season the other side, and bake for another 6 minutes.
  • Remove from oven. Top with 3 tbsp. hummus.
  • Top with veggies of your choice. (I topped with broccoli, grilled mushrooms, roasted cherry tomatoes, and sautéed onions & red bell peppers.
  • Top with 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese.
  • Return to oven and broil for an additional 3-5 minutes, depending on how crispy you want your pita “crust.”

I seasoned mine with my favorite salt-blend, Jane’s Krazy Mixed-Up Salt.

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I like Jane because she can spell Krazy with a K, and she can like it. (I know at least some of you listened to Something Corporate’s ‘Konstantine’ in high school…)

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Baked hummus, grilled veggies, and melty mozz, oh my!

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I cut it into quarters to ease devouring consumption.

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AH-MAZE-ING. I think that, as with the bagels, my newfound love of this previously condemned good stemmed from the fact that the base wasn’t bread-ily overwhelming. Especially with the pizza, I loved being able to taste the hummus-cheese-vegetable ménage trois in all its revolutionary deliciousness.

I was really, really full after dinner, but somehow mustered up the appetite for a baby bowl of chocolate raspberry cheesecake fro-yo and a not-so-baby dollop of whipped cream.

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This was my attempt to ward off my popcorn addiction. But, I’m realizing, craving popcorn for dessert is probably the least of all junk food evils. Perhaps I shouldn’t be forcing a sweet tooth upon myself when I’m really a staunch salty girl? Not saying this wasn’t delish…

Happy Thursday, amigos. Almost everyone’s favorite day!

-Sarah

Crème de la Crème

First, let me start with muchos muchos gracias to all of you for lulling my popcorn-addiction fears. I’ll likely let the overconsumption run its natural course until some scientific finding advises otherwise.

I kicked off Tuesday morning—a.k.a. the first day of fall!—with my favorite autumn drank—chai tea, with a little creamer & honey.

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I developed an innocent addiction to Starbucks’ vanilla chai lattes during college, so I do my best to re-create it sans the creepy powder they use. Not saying I don’t enjoy Starbucks’ version in all its artificial glory, on occasion :)

I intended for the chai to be my coffee replacement, but I ended up succumbing to my caffeine cravings and having a cup. I’m still bitter about the whole burnt tongue thing, so I’m not giving coffee art any spotlight until I’ve gotten over its seductive trickery.

For breakfast, I was on a mission to get creative with my oat bran for Ms. PB’s Best Of Oats week. And, I must say, my visionary breakfast brilliance came out in full force. If you are hungry, on a diet or currently dissatisfied with your lunch, I suggest you stop reading now. If not, I present to you…

Boston Creme Oat Bran

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I can’t remember the last time I had a doughnut. Oh, wait… But, in all seriousness, I rarely eat doughnuts. Partially because I don’t want to die of a heart-attack at my ripe young age, and partially because they simply aren’t my favorite dessert. I do, however, have a resilient love for Boston creme doughnuts. I can pass up the fried dough, but I’m a sucker for creme fillings. (Do I even have to say it? Okay, TWSS.)

So there lies my inspiration for this decadent DPAAB (dessert parading around as breakfast, if you missed inception of that acronym). She’s beautiful, isn’t she?

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I brewed my oat bran on the stove with: 1/3 cup oat bran, 1 cup water, salt, 1/2 banana sliced thinly, vanilla extract and truvia. Then, I topped it with several dollops of cheesecake pudding and drizzled a packet of Dark Chocolate Dreams.

The cheesecake pudding was pre-made and organic (thereby healthier, right? ;) ), and I had a sample packet of PB&Co’s Dark Chocolate Dreams. I’d never tried either product prior to this breakfast, but their presence in this particular creation was clutch, for lack of a better word.

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I’m quite sure cereal for breakfast is never going to cut it after experiencing this.

I fall-ified Monday’s dinner by making a roasted veggie salad for lunch.

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In the mix: spring greens, sun-dried tomatoes, oil-cured olives, grilled shrooms, roasted cherry tomatoes, grilled onions, celery, corn and grilled chicken. Dressed, as usual, in balsamic + honey and celery salt.

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My ode to summer salad was good, but I really prefer cooked veggies in salads. Halfway through, I remembered that I have an ungodly amount of hummus to get through.

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Those added dollops were the perfect complement to the roasted veggies & balsamic dressing. I always forget how amazing the hummus + salad combo is.

Since there was SO much hummus to be had, I busted out my favorite pretzels, Snyder’s Organic Oat Bran.

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I was never a “pretzel person” ‘til I tried these. I usually eat them straight up, but my go-to dips, as of late, are cream cheese and hummus. Neither ever disappoints.

For dinner, I made a mediterranean salad that Tina featured last week. I halved the original recipe since it serves 10—but I used the full amount of artichokes and onions since I had a lot on hand.  I also used red potatoes instead of gold yukons.IMG_0767 

I can confirm Tina’s praises of ease and deliciousness. This was amazing! It was such a different take on a potato salad. I think the key was the roasted potatoes and sautéed veggies—which tasted incredible once chilled and marinated in the EVOO & balsamic.

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Last night’s perfect bite: sauteed pepper, onion, roasted red potato, artichoke and kalamata olive. I can’t pretend I didn’t strategically get all those goods onto the fork, but ‘twas a magical bite, indeed.

As usual, I made a notable effort to eat fruit for dessert.

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I do love dinosaur plums. But, one of the perks drawbacks of decadent breakfasts: their taste lingers. A.k.a., I had puddin’ on the brain.

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Since it was cheesecake pudding, I had to top it with grahams for an as-close-to-the-real-thing experience.

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I may have just discovered my second favorite dessert to cheesecake. As in, I sort of want to crumble an entire box of graham crackers into that pudding container and have my way with it. I won’t, scout’s honor.

Before I go, I wanted to let you all know how my one-week foray into yoga went. If my limerick and expressed enthusiasm didn’t give it away, I LOVED YOGA!

I only ended up going five out of the planned seven days because of unfortunate fullness and quite fortunate Rosh Hashanah celebrations. But I actually think that was a good thing because the soreness was getting pretty intense. During my last class on Sunday, I got the Brooklyn Yogi again—who was equally as hilarious and obnoxiously Brooklyn-y. But the class was the most intense and rewarding of all the ones I went to it.

Having not done yoga for two days now, I’m craving it. I think one of the reasons I like yoga so much is because it’s so different from any other form of exercise I’ve ever tried out. I think that I, like most people, view exercise from a results-based perspective. We exercise to improve or maintain our health, appearance, fitness level, etc. The results-oriented aspect of yoga was so different than running or any other cardio exercise I’ve tried. I was drawn to yoga for the way it made me feel as I was going through the motions, not for the results that were to come. I’ve never felt so present or engaged during exercise before, and I loved that. What are the benefits you reap from your exercise method of choice?

From a physical standpoint, even after one week, I feel stronger and more stretched-out than I’ve ever felt before. As a prior yoga-skeptic, I’m thoroughly impressed.

I haven’t yet figured out where I’ll go with yoga from here. A monthly pass to the studio is really expensive—more than double what it costs for a membership at a premium NYC gym. So I’ve been toying with the idea of getting a membership to a gym that has yoga classes. I’m not sure if I’d enjoy standard yoga as much as Bikram because I really liked the heat component. Any thoughts on getting a gym membership versus sticking strictly to yoga?

Happy hump day ;)

-Sarah

Adios al Verano…

Playa y sol (*transl: beach & sun) are now out of season

Excuses to eat ice cream just dwindled in reason

As the heat’s no longer an acceptable justification

Can’t claim it’s necessary for the purpose of hydration

Each week from now on, will grow a bit more cool

Oh, we’ll long for the days spent lounging at the pool

Understand, though, that we shan’t cry for summer

The season among us is far from a bummer

Sweaters, pumpkins and apple-picking come with the fall

U might even be excited for Sunday football

Me? I cannot wait for Halloween’s tricks and treats

Moreover, I’m anticipating Thanksgiving day eats

Eager for all this season will bring

Ready for fall; I hear it’s the new spring :)

If an acrostic rhyming poem dedicated to the change of seasons isn’t proof that unemployment has left me with too much time on my hands, I don’t know what is. But gracias for putting up with my recent poetic musings.

So, if you didn’t get the gist of that terribly cheesy poem, yesterday marked the last day of summer. It was a beautiful 70 degree day in NYC, so, feeling some seasonal nostalgia, I tried to keep my eats summery and fresh.

Onto breakfast, I digress.

I know, I know. I’m a breakfast-repeater. But ever since concocting my Sarah’s Own Fig Newton yogurt, the looming desire to re-create it has been taunting me. Suppressing food fantasies has never been my strength, so I gave in. Here you have my greek yogurt, cinnamon, honey, graham and fresh fig blend in all its secondhand glory.

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In an attempt to be artsy (you will learn, I’m not), I captured the red of the apple and the figs. Summery, right?

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Here’s the full color shot because—while figs certainly are beautiful—it’s the golden-y grahams that make the bowl.

For lunch, I made one of my favorite summery chicken salads.

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In the mix: 3 oz. cooked chicken, cubed; 2 big dollops of greek yogurt; celery; handful of grapes; slivered almonds; honey (enough to write your first initial); generous sprinkling of lemon pepper seasoning; salt.

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The grapes and almonds do wonders for this chicken salad, and the contrast of the salty lemon-pepper seasoning and sweet honey make magic happen.

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Piled high between a rye sandwich thin. A little too high for neat eating. To the rescue, FSTG chips!

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Oooh my god. I thought I’d experienced a climactic level of chip-induced ecstasy when I discovered FSTG multigrains. But those geniuses over in FSTG land have outdone their original with The Works. These are perfectly salty and generously seeded—basically an intensified, polished version of the multigrains. If you seek happiness and life fulfillment, buy these chips.

Last night’s dinner was as summery a salad as can be. I benched my current obsession with grilled and roasted veggies in salads—figuring roasted veggies will be plentiful throughout fall—and let the goods flourish in their freshest state.

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In the mix: romaine, hard-boiled egg white, celery, shrooms, cherry tomatoes, sweet onion, green pepper, corn, oil-cured olives and sun-dried tomatoes; dressed in my balsamic-honey mix and celery salt.

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I played favorites with this corner of the plate, which was hosting a generous offering of my favorite players: sun-dried tomatoes, oil-cured olives and corn. The award-winning bites included all of the above.

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Alongside was some whole-wheat pita with pine-nut hummus. The tub of hummus came along for the dinner ride just in case some raw veggies were feeling underdressed.

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…which obviously didn’t happen.

I did my best to do dessert in a summery fashion.

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But the sodium-fiend in me could not be silenced.

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Hot sauce on my thumb… Classy.

When you go through more than a box of popcorn a week, can it be classified as addiction? And by more than a box, I mean, sometimes, two boxes. Por favor, give me some horrifying fact about popcorn that will make me never want to eat it again. Or, help me justify my current over-consumption ;)

Happy first day of fall!

-Sarah

Weekend Discoveries v. 2

Dearest readers, please don’t go into disarray,

When on days beginning with “S,” I go M.I.A.

At the start of each work week, you’ll get a re-cap

And learn what edible discoveries fell into my lap

If the rhyming threw you off, that was my way of (1) reiterating my apologies for vanishing every weekend and (2) informing you that I’ve decided to re-cap my weekends in discovery-form. (See last weekend’s discoveries, if you missed the first edition.)

During this Rosh Hashanah weekend, I discovered

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-Foccacia tiles… featuring two of life’s greatest toppings/ingredients/foods-to-be-eaten-by-the-handful: olives and sun-dried tomatoes. Incredible. And something I need to re-create in the near future.

FYI: Foccacia bread is not usually a pre-Rosh Hashanah dinner snack. But my reformed Jewish familia doesn’t discriminate against non-traditional eats. Jewishness is not a pre-req; deliciousness is.

Back to the discoveries…

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-Oatmeal beer.

My family also opts for swapping out the Manischewitz with a lot of beer from Long Island’s Blue Point Brewery. Since I don’t have a taste for even the most interesting of lagers, I stuck to vino—which leads to my next discovery…

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-My lack of portion control when it comes to snacking also applies to wine. Hmmm, l’chaim?

The rest of my Rosh Hashanah eats are re-discoveries. I’ve had ‘em all before, but I’m not one to pass up an opportunity to fall in love all over again.

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Apples and honey, for a sweet new year :)

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Raisin challah. Holla.

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Matzo ball soup. Golden rule: the more balls, the better. Easiest ever TWSS.

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Some other staples: Kasha, garlic spinach, string bean casserole, brisket, pulled turkey and corn.

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All together now. The gold medal went to the kasha, but the pulled turkey was phenomenal. I usually skip the turkey during holiday meals in an attempt to make room for more veggies (ahem, dessert), but whatever sauce this was marinating in was highly addictive. As in, I went back for seconds.

Shortly after pulling the “I’m too full for dessert” card,  I spied this and discovered…

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-I’m never too full for cheesecake.

Juuuust in case the apples and honey didn’t ensure a sweet new year…

***

Throughout the rest of the weekend, I discovered…

-Boy breakfasts and girl breakfasts are breeds all their own.

Even when the ingredients are identical,

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the results differ.

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(As you can see in the more masculine egg creation, I’ve still not mastered the art of properly stuffing a wrap…)

-Whomever decided that cream cheese is a spread,

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clearly never experienced it as a dip.

Seriously, pretzels & cream cheese might change your life.

-You are what you eat.

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So by way of consuming Yogi cereal, I should be a yogi in no time.

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In all seriousness, this may have been my favorite weekend find. Not only was it addictively delicious, it’s packing some impressive nutrients.

-Salt & Vinegar almondsIMG_0695

Just as addictively delicioso as the yogi cereal, with slightly less impressive nutritionals (i.e.: almonds, plus 1. artificially flavored, minus 1). As a lover of all things s&v, I’m willing to consume a little extra sodium diacetate (yum) in the name of the best tasting almond in existence.

Lastly…

-I may have nailed down a recipe for the easiest, cheesiest “I know it’s healthy, but no one else can tell” mac & cheese ever.

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Not to be a total c-tease (that’s cheese tease, perverts), but I want to run this by a few of mis amigos with superb mac & cheese taste before changing the world with the debut of this recipe.

Muahahahahahahahahaha,

-Sarah

 

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