Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Busy day and a recipe

I woke up ravenous this morning, and did not feel like waiting for my whole breakfast to be done at once so I ate in stages.  My sister-in-law who visited yesterday is lucky enough to live right near a Great Harvest, and is thoughtful enough that she brought us some bread when she came up!  So of course that had to be the focus of my breakfast.

Great Harvest (!) honey whole wheat bread with 1 Tbsp peanut butter, 1/2 banana and a sprinkle of cinnamon
Once the edge was taken off I had second breakfast:

An orange and an ugly fried egg with Tabasco.
We had some seriously weird weather this morning!  As we walked out of the house the sky was blue, the sun was shining and while it was definitely chilly there was a hint of warmth in the air.  I thought to myself that the winter coats the girls and I were bundled into probably wouldn't be necessary by the time afternoon rolled around.  But then I pulled out onto the highway and saw the blackest, most ominous clouds dumping snow as they advanced over the mountains and I changed my mind.  For most of the drive to preschool if I looked out my right window it was lovely...

Cue the pastorale music
...and if I looked out my left window it was run for cover weather.

Batten down the hatches!
The girls heard me talking about the stormy-looking clouds coming for us and decided they wanted to use their umbrellas on the way in to preschool, lack of rain be damned.

But by the time I got my latte (thanks Kathleen!) it was decidedly winter.

Snow coming from the north?
A grande just plain skim latte spilling on my hand
My friend Carolyn invited us to Flips Gymnastics for open gym this morning, and it worked out so that it perfectly filled the time between dropping Emily off at preschool and picking her back up.

I had a great time!  I think Charlotte did too, once I convinced her that Mommy didn't have to hold her the entire time.

I have been feeling guilty that I did so many activities with Emily when she was a toddler (Little Gym, Sing & Sign, Abrakadoodles, you name it) and I haven't done as many things with Charlotte because preschool drop-off and pick-up limit my morning time so much plus I like to go to the gym when I only have to pay for daycare for 1 kid instead of both.  We used to do Little Gym, but it was kind of tough to manage time-wise plus Charlotte pretty much just spent her time clinging to me or playing with the adjustment knobs on the equipment so I had a hard time paying by the semester $20+ per 45-minute session on top of a steep yearly membership.  This gym is perfect because it's $5 per 90-minute session with no commitment and no membership fee and there is no circle time or songs or specific activities the kids need to do.  All the structure at Little Gym is supposed to help the kids get used to transitions and sitting to listen to directions before preschool and it worked well for Emily but not so much for Charlotte.

Afterward we got Emily and went to M.O.M. where the girls were lovely this time.  I can never tell what kind of mood they'll be in once we get in there.

Then we went home and it was time for lunch!  Chef Christine has been talking about massaged kale salad on her blog Frederick Foodie and it has been awhile since I've made one of those myself so I decided today was the day.  This salad is best if you make it in the middle of summer when all the ingredients are in season (except avocados of course.  Boy am I jealous of the west coast for being able to grow avocados.  Also artichokes.), but it was pretty darn good today too.

If you are the type who likes to fiddle with recipes (like me), I urge you to try it this way's so simple but the ingredients balance so well.

Smashed Kale Salad
Makes 1 salad


4-5 large fresh kale leaves, washed and torn into small pieces with middle rib/stem removed
1/2 avocado
10 cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup corn kernels
1/4 oz crushed walnuts (toasted are even better)
1 oz crumbled soft cheese (like goat or blue)
1 Tbsp lemon juice, or more if you like things tart
salt and pepper to taste

  1. Place kale into a bowl and pour lemon juice salt and pepper over the top.
  2. Using your hand, smash the kale up (I think the word "massage" is too gentle for what I do to my kale).  The kale will reduce significantly in volume as you smash.
  3. Add the avocado, and then smash again to incorporate avocado, leaving some larger pieces if you wish.
  4. Add tomatoes, corn, walnuts and cheese.
  5. Stir to combine, then enjoy!

 I know 1/2 avocado is a large calorie commitment, but 1/4 avocado just doesn't do it for me.  When you use just 1/4 you don't even realize it's in really need 1/2 to give it the delicious creaminess that makes me love it so.  I will also admit that despite what I said yesterday I did not put cheese in my salad today and it was just fine because the avocado provided the creamy texture I usually achieve with cheese.

Since I have access to tasty oranges again, I went back to my orange smoothie today.

1 cup plain nonfat greek yogurt, 1 whole peeled orange, a dash of milk, a handful of ice, 1 banana and a pinch each of nutmeg, wheat germ and flax seeds

My dinner pictures are kind of miserable.  I packed my dinner to take with me since I was headed to the gym for the 5:30 Zumba class.  I figured I'd use my cute little bento box, but it turns out it was a bit TOO little and too slippery as well.

I ended up repeatedly dumping my dinner all over the car as I went around turns.  So if you want to see NICE pictures of what I ate, go to The Edible Perspective, which is where I got the recipe.

Layer 1 - cottage cheese eggs

Layer 2 - chickpea burgers topped with cheese which stuck to the bottom of  Layer 1
 After a CROWDED Zumba class and 2 fruitless efforts to get the last couple things I need for our upcoming trip to Disney, I returned home for some dessert fruit.

Defrosted frozen strawberries and mangoes
 I missed having a veggie at dinner, so I finished up the girls' snap peas.

Then Will and I watched the first 2 episodes of Breaking Bad.  Why didn't anyone tell me it was about a chemistry geek?!?!  Love it.

Tomorrow I'm headed to Trader Joes with my mom and sister to stock up on snacks!  Exciting stuff!


Kim Paradise said...

I love your blog Sara! So many interesting foods to try and I find your life exciting compared to my sitting at a desk for 9 hours a day. Congrats on the weightloss milestone! Keep up the good eating.

Sara said...

Thanks Kim! Glad you like it!