My form of meditation

Yeah, let’s just say dinner tonight was beyond fantastic. I roasted some butternut squash last night (at 400* for about 35 minutes) in preparation for the butternut squash risotto I’ve been planning on making for ages. I got home pretty late and it took a lot (!) of willpower not to snack on it while cooking (I did however snack on roasted parsnips I also roasted last night and some fresh melon I cut up for occasions just like this – not pictured). I was hungry, but I was also determined to make this dish tonight. What I forgot is that I actually really like making risotto! Yes, it takes a while and yes, you have to constantly stir it and give it 100% of your attention but seriously, it’s kind of soothing. My husband wasn’t home yet, so I stirred the rice while reflecting on my day. It was nice to unwind and concentrate on just one thing. I like to multitask at all times, but tonight, while making the risotto I just let everything else be. I’m sure things will get done so no need to stress over it! :)

Now let’s talk about the final product. I omitted the butter, the onions, the shallots and tarragon, and used about 1.5 ounces of pecorino and 2.5 oz of gouda. My risotto also always takes way more broth than the recipe calls for. I don’t know if my pan is too hot (so the broth evaporates instead of getting absorbed into the rice) but in any case, this was no exception and it took about 5 cups of broth to get it to the creamy consistency I wanted. I don’t like my risotto al dente 😉

My labor of love paid off! This was so creamy and cheesy – comfort food at its best. I could have eaten the whole pot of it, but I shared it with Adam instead and we’ll be eating the leftovers tomorrow. I think I may pan fry it like Alicia did :) Adam gave this recipe 3 smiley faces (basically the highest rating we have!). Yum!!

Butternut squash risotto

After dinner my sweet tooth kicked in so I had these straight out of their containers 😳

Berryline coconut froyo + chocolate covered edamame

[dinner, including estimated dessert: 568]

OTHER EATS

pre-morning workout snack: 4 dates

[85 calories]

1/2c oikos, 1/3c TJ's european style yogurt, 1 apple, 1/2 oz mixmygranola low fat granola base, almonds + choc chips

yogurt closeup

[398 calories]

chickpea + carrots in goddess dressing over ezekiel bread + raw sugar snap peas on side

+

part II of lunch: bosc pear

[419 calories]

1/2 banana/1T Barney Butter in TJ's low carb wrap

+

country-choice-organic-double-fudge-brownie-cookies

[360 calories] – Yeah, the cookies were unplanned – my sweet tooth kicked in after the banana/BB wrap :(

Total calories consumed: 1830 + a little bit of melon and roasted parsnips

I think I need to establish a max 1 post-dinner snack rule! There were 3 unplanned snacks today (cookies, froyo + choc covered edamame). None of them individually were too bad, but 3 things I didn’t really need is a bit much. I’ll try to work on that 😀

WORKOUTS

I’ve been trying to get up early to work out lately, since work has been kind of busy. I planned on doing a 3 mile run + shredding at 6 am today, but since I’m super slow in the morning I only got to do the run before I needed to get ready. I am NOT a morning person – it took a lot out of me this morning to get into it. I did it, though… let’s see if I can do my 4.5 miles tomorrow morning! Hmm. Workout stats (includes a 6 minute warm-up walk + 0.15 mile cooldown walk):

  • Duration: 0:36 (+stretching)
  • Calories burnt: 302 (40% fat)
  • Ave HR: 145 (75%); Max HR: 194 (100%)

During lunch I also took a pilates class (I had a 2:15 meeting so I needed a workout that wouldn’t make me sweat too much). I decided that I really love pilates. It was super challenging but therapeutic at the same time. I’m going to try to take this class more often! I wore my HRM, just for fun… I burnt 113 calories but that’s probably how much I’d burn just sitting at my desk (although I certainly was working much harder!). I’m not going to wear the HRM next time. These types of workouts are not for calorie burning and I certainly don’t need to monitor my heart rate, so there is no need for a HRM (I was just curious this one time).

No shredding today. After coming home late, all I wanted to do was eat and get to the rest of my errands. I think I’ve done enough exercise today… I don’t want to burnt out for no reason!

Tomorrow is Wednesday… a.k.a hump day… and then it’s only 2 more days until the weekend. We’re going to NY! I can’t wait!!!

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15 comments to My form of meditation

  • That risotto looks beyond amazing! I don’t have enough patience for these dishes during the week but I will definitely save this for a ‘wow’ meal!

    I think you definitely got in a good chunk of exercise today!

  • Totally love your eats, and mmm those two cookies are delightful!

  • I love the risotto! Have you bought the pre-cut butternut squash at Trader Joe’s? That’s a must-have for me every time I go there.

  • I agree about making risotto – for some reason it has this reputation of being difficult to make, but it’s really not! This one looks phenomenal – gouda is one of my favorite cheeses and roasted butternut squash is divine.

    I have a very similar lunch today – goddess garbanzos with carrots added in – can’t wait!

  • K

    Way to go with the risotto! Looks fabulous :)

    I love that chickpea/carrot sandwich! What does goddess dressing taste like?

  • Elina

    Alison, I’ve never bought pre-chopped squash. I think it’s a great idea for nights when I don’t feel like chopping. TJ’s rocks! 😀

    Lauren, I totally forgot to give you credit for the recipe. Gotta find your old post and link to it… thanks for the inspiration!

    K, the goddess dressing has tahini in it, so it’s kind of creamy and hummusy tasting :)

  • I love your blog! Your pictures are really great!

  • Katie

    Weekend in NYC?! Jealous! Whats on the agenda?? Good food I hope!

  • Adam

    That risotto really was amazing. I can’t wait for lunchtime today :)

  • sister inna

    hump day = ** weekend around the corner** (in my mind at least). The risotto really does look incredible :)

  • way to go Elina!! Any reason why you skipped on the onion?

    My risotto always takes more liquid too. i usually use a combo of wine + broth and i lovvveee it that way!

  • Way to go on the risotto–I have never tried to make it homemade because I know it’s really laborious! Yours looks so creamy.
    LOVE the idea of BB in a wrap. If only I could find low-carb wraps!
    I’m with you on the 1-snack max after dinner need. Sometimes I’m really good about it but every once in a while I get the urge to go crazy!!

  • Elina

    Katie, you know all my trips are food centric 😉

    Rhodeygirl – I really hate onions, so we never eat them (or other foods in the onion family) in our household since I’m the chef :)

    Lara, risotto is a bit time consuming but it’s not hard at all. Give it a try sometime!

  • ok how much would it cost to have you start preparing my meals?

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