Making up for lost time

Given my serious drop in readership over the last few weeks, it seems that you guys miss my regular food and fitness posts :) I decided to give you what you want and provide a long recap of my eats over the last (nearly) 2 weeks.  This will be a picture heavy post, but there are definitely plenty of them.  I should also mention that my 10K is coming up this Sunday so I’ve been running diligently and fueling myself appropriately. I’ll do another post on my recent workouts. I’ve gotten much better! I guess practice does make perfect :D

An enormous amount of food was consumed over a 2 weeks period. I wanted to highlight these 5…

1. I made Self’s zucchini bran muffins that I found through Lara’s Thinspired.  She was raving about them so much, I couldn’t wait to make them (apparently it still took me forever, but whatev ;) )

zucchini-muffin

zucchini muffin

I doubled the recipe, divided it into 8 muffins (instead of 6) and halved the oil. I think I burnt them slightly :oops: They were pretty delicious but a little too sweet (I think since the raisins I used were very sweet, I could have cut the sugar amount by at least 1/3) and a little too dense. I definitely learned a lesson with these – cutting down on oil without any substitutions is not a good idea. I usually sub nonfat yogurt for oil (1 for 1 of regular yogurt – not greek) and that works well. I was out of yogurt and decided to just do it without but I think you really need all the fat in the recipe to make these moist (they are from Self so they are already healthified). Lesson learned.

Oh yeah, and I also made a zucchini chocolate cupcake with one of them by using some leftover frosting from this cake. This was good!

zucchini muffin with chocolate frosting + choc sprinkles

2. For the entire 2 weeks we were really low on fresh produce and groceries in general. I had to get creative. What to do with the pork tenderloin that’s in the fridge? Stuff that baby! It was my first time attempting to stuff a pork tenderloin but Kath’s recipe for pork tenderloin stuffed with blue cheese, dates and pecans inspired me (I hate blue cheese so I used goat cheese instead) and I was ready for the challenge. It turns out it’s really easy and it came out absolutely amazing! My husband ‘supposedly’ hates goat cheese and dates and he loved this! Said it had to get on our regular recipe rotation (hmm, I don’t think we have a recipe rotation yet). Note: pictures were updated in Jan 2012 (this remains to be one of our favorite recipes!!)

3. Remember my fun day with lots of packages?  These Buitoni wild mushroom agnolotti (ok let’s be real – ravioli) came very handy during our grocery trip ban (we maxed out on our grocery budget mid-month).

buitoni-mushroom-agnolotti

I wanted to make a creamy healthy sauce and tried to use a plain chobani as a base. Apparently yogurt curdles under heat. Oops! Plan A went straight into trash, so I steamed some asparagus and spinach, sauteed it with a tiny bit of EVOO, then added a drop of truffle oil (which transforms basically any food into a divine meal) and shredded some parmesan cheese over the whole concoction.

mushroom ravioli with asparagus, spinach and parmesan

mushroomy bite

Both me and my husband absolutely LOVED this!! I’ve seen this all over the blog world with bloggers mentioning the high sodium content and high calories for the amount of food you get, but we thought they were amazing! I would say, without any hesitation, that this dinner turned out to be restaurant quality. I didn’t find it to be too salty (I guess the sodium is on the higher side but at least it didn’t taste it) and the veggies bulked up the whole thing. The mushrooms tasted so fresh and the cheese filling was nice and creamy. Of course adding the truffle oil didn’t hurt either! :) I savored every bite and was very satisfied. No need for dessert even. That’s huge! Needless to say, I’d buy it if (when?) it were sold in stores. Perfect quick meal!

4. I really hate throwing away food. We bought a whole baguette to made steak and cheese sandwiches (pictured in the bottom of this post), and of course had lots of baguette leftovers. I’m sure you know that stuff is completely dry and hard even on the next day and we forgot about the leftovers for days! Again trying to conserve the small amount of fruit we had, I went to the freezer and found some frozen berries. Perfect! I decided to make use of both of these, and made Ellie Krieger’s peach french toast bake (I substituted berries for peaches). Here it is the all together the night before:

Ellie Krieger baked french toast with berries

And the next morning, post baking:

baked french toast

And my portion:

my portion with chobani+agave nectar "frosting"

It was delicious! The brown sugar browned up nicely – it was perfectly sweet without being overwhelming. Love Ellie’s recipes :)

5. It was over 90* last Friday so my husband and I decided to go out for a drink + dinner and enjoy the weather at Burton’s instead of staying at home. I’m becoming less rigid about following “the plan” and it really helps with the sane aspect :) I tried to make a healthy choice so it really was the best of both worlds!

glass of Malbec

Bbq chicken salad: lettuce, bbq chicken, corn, black beans, cheddar cheese, tortilla strips, bacon bits and tomatoes (I think). It was so flavorful I didn’t need the dressing. Next time I’ll try it without the cheese too because I couldn’t really taste it much. The chicken was very nicely marinaded, though, and the tortilla strips added a nice crunch. I love tex-mex salads like this!

bbq chicken salad

OTHER EATS

chobani with grapes, Kashi autumn wheat, 1/2 cranberry zest honest food bar, almonds

1/2 brownie with chocolate frosting and sprinkles

zucchini muffin with whipped cream cheese + nonfat yogurt, grapes and almonds

tortilla pizzas with pasta sauce, roasted zucchini, light mozzarella, goat cheese + pepitas

ezekiel bread with cream cheese and lox + broccoli and Rachel's cucumber dill cottage cheese

gnu banana walnut bar

brownie (made with nonfat yogurt) with dried cranberries

sandwich: Food for Life english muffin with laughing cow cheese, grilled chicken and sun dried tomato hummus (fantastic combo!) + carrots and grapes on side

UFood raspberry swirl frozen yogurt with strawberries, pecans and Zoe's granola

fish taco with 2 kinds of salsas, cheese and a dollop of sour cream

b.good southwestern chicken salad

roasted chicken (with skin), buckwheat, grape tomatoes and a fresh cucumber

"sirnik" with sweetened condensed milk (I poured too much - didn't eat all the milk)

chobani + 1/2 banana, pb puffins, blueberries and apple butter

massive salad: spinach, roasted chicken, carrots, grape tomatoes, snow peas + 1T Annie's woodstock dressing

pistachioats cookies - review to come!

zucchini muffin, 1/2 banana, Rachel's pomegranate orange cottage cheese (only had a few spoonfulls of this- yuk!)

ww pasta with roasted cauliflower, asparagus, edamame + pesto sauce

brownie with cranberries

Food for Life english muffin with whipped cream cheese and lox + 1/2 banana & coffee

snow peas + Annie's cheddar bunnies

How did this guy get here?

bunnie on snow peas

Yeah, I’m a dork! :D

gigantic salad: spinach, grape tomatoes, roasted cauliflower, edamame, asparagus, Sabra sundried tomato hummus with 1T Annie's woodstock dressing + blueberry chobani for dessert

breaded baked chicken with creamy mushrooms and bulgar

banana/raisin oats with choco java amazing almonds and Barney Butter

snack: 3 dates, 3 dried apricots, orange vanilla amazing almonds + pretzel sticks = awesome!!

lentil soup (homemade, defrosted), slice of ezekiel bread with laughing cow wedge, carrot sticks + mini lime pie larabar

the mini larabar is really mini (=1/2 of regular)

chicken pelmeni (store bought) + georgian sauce

organic-hard-cider

Phew! So did I make up for my recent lack of food posting or what? ;)

The winner of the Country Bob’s sauce giveaway is…

Random Integer Generator

Here are your random numbers:

1

Timestamp: 2009-04-30 01:12:43 UTC

Comment #1 -Alison (I guess it pays to be quick at these things! :) )

Alison said: The sauce sounds interesting. Is the flavor closer to A1 or BBQ sauce?

Congratulations, Alison!! :D

Singapore – saving the best for last

On day 2 of our stay in Singapore, we made a list of everything we wanted to eat and realized that we would have to basically eat constantly for the rest of our vacation and even then we wouldn’t be able to taste it all.  We had a lot of amazing food in Singapore over the first 3 days, but on our last day in Singapore it was basically do or die (ok, not die, just never taste again) so this was a really food crammed day… and it was absolutely fantastic. Best.food.ever!  Are you guys ready? This is going to be A LOT to feast your eyes on ;)

We started the day a bit late and skipped breakfast in favor of saving room for lunch and other eats.  While waiting for No Signboard Seafood Restaurant to open for lunch, we relaxed by the Espanade. Beautiful!

The Esplanade

No Signboard Seafood is known for their chilli and white pepper crabs. Since the stuff is not cheap, we decided to split the chilli crab.  While waiting for it to cook, we munched on some peanuts we were served (and then were charged for… grrr).

peanuts and sauces

Chilli crab: fresh Sri Lanka crab cooked in robust chilli sauce flavored with prawn paste, garlic and many other spices.

chilli crab

The sauce was so incredibly flavorful – I wanted to drink the stuff!  Good thing we got little rolls to soak up all that deliciously nutty sauce. Yeah, it definitely tasted a bit nutty. A.mazing!

little rolls

The crab was really hard to eat. We were the only ones in the restaurant (it was only 11am) so the whole staff was staring at us while we were trying to not make complete fools of ourselves.  It was so embarrassing. I think we went through a pack of napkins and wet naps. No joke. Totally worth it though :D

To burn off some lunch calories (and make room for more food!) we went to Little India. Our guide book said it was just like the real India, without the confrontational side of it.

Little India

gorgeous colors

I have to say that despite the colorful picture above, the neighborhood was still a bit depressing looking – kind of dirty and sad.  We walked around a bit, and then went to check out another hawker center – the Newton Hawker Center.  Most of the shops were closed, but we enjoyed the space in peace and had some delicious drinks.

Adam at the Newton hawker center

Newton Hawker center

Adam got a beer and I got the sugar cane juice. It was so cool. The woman took a bunch of sugar canes, ran it through this machine that squeezed a bunch of juice out of it and topped it off with ice. Voila – sugar cane juice. This was really refreshing and so delicious. Adam thought it was overwhelmingly sweet. I found it to be mild. Weird, right? I loved it!

sugar cane juice

What did we do next? Went shopping (and ate) of course! This sounds kind of bad. Seriously we did not just stuff our faces all day, despite what this looks like. The crab didn’t actually have that much meat in it.  At least that’s what I tell myself so I can sleep at night ;) I clearly do not hold back on vacations :D

So while gift shopping, we stumbled upon one of many department store food courts…

supermarket "food court"

Adam was SO excited when he saw the octopus ball place (Tony Bourdain had these in his Tokyo episode). He liked them :)

Adam in front of the octopus ball place

I was having serious brownie withdrawals so I got a brownie. This looked amazing but was just ok. Helped with the brownie craving though :)

European style brownie in Asia

And then I saw this yogurt place (conveniently called “The Yogurt Place“). I thought it was frozen yogurt but they were giving out samples and I was so shocked that it was just greek yogurt with lots of mixins.  I didn’t realize how much I missed yogurt so I had to get a little cup of it as well :D They should have places like this in the States too. Maybe they do already – do you have one in your part of the country (or the world)?

greek yogurt with chocolate syrup and hazelnut chunks

And then we went back to the Newton hawker center…

back to the Newton hawker center

And had 2 things the locals we met at the cooking class said we absolutely had to try: string ray and oyster omelet.  Both sounded kind of weird, but I insisted that we try them since they were highly recommended… and I’m so glad we did!

Sting Ray shop

sting ray with sambal

Adam digging in

I love sting ray

And so does Adam :)

The sting ray tasted like a very light flaky fish. The sambal over it was really what made the dish special. Actually the sambal tasted just like the one we made so that was pretty cool. If you like fish and ever see string ray on the menu, don’t be afraid of it. Actually I’d even go as far as to say that it’s fish for fish haters – really, it did not taste fishy at all!

Oyster omelette shop

oyster omelette

The oyster omelette was more of a brave move. It was all fried so it didn’t taste bad. In fact it tasted quite nice, especially with that hot sauce on the side, but the texture of the oysters was definitely a little funky. Adam (to his surprise) liked the dish so while he was picking at it, I went to town on the string ray. Ha.

And then there were drinks… :)

We started with a roof top bar called the Loof.  It was conveniently located close to our hotel and we really enjoyed this spot. Roof top bars are the best! :D

The Loof decor

The Loof bar

The Loof Life: rum, pineapple, lychee, juicy lime chunks and fresh mint springs. Best drink of the trip!

drinking the Loof Life cocktail

It was pouring very lightly outside so the drinks were 2 for 1 (bar policy). We stayed perfectly dry under the roof so this was definitely a bonus.  I didn’t complain though, that’s for sure, and got another one of these babies :)

The Loof Life cocktail

After round 2, we headed to the New Asia Bar at the Swissotel the Stamford.  The place was gorgeous (standby picture from their website since my camera did not do the place justice)…

New Asia bar decor

The Stamford is tallest hotel in the world, so the view from the New Asia Bar was sick ;)

My drink, however, was not :( I got the sangria blanca: fresh orange, lime and lemon muddled with sugar, laced with Patron tequila, Grand Marnier, apricot liquor, and light dry and fruity wine topped with soda. Sounds good, right? Yeah, not so much.

sangria blanca

It’s ok, I probably had enough food and drinks by then and just enjoyed the scenery. It was an excellent last day of the trip. I didn’t want to go back home the next morning!

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