VeganMoFO: Christmas in Central Texas

In what has seemed to become my unofficial theme for VeganMoFo 2013, here is another post about something that happened last year!

My brother was stationed at Fort Hood mid-last year and so he, my sister-in-law, and their baby Josie moved to Killeen, Texas.  My family decided to meet there for Christmas so they wouldn’t have to travel, and my mom found Weatherstone cabin bed and breakfast in the nearby town of Salado, which had the perfect amount of space for all six of us.

Flights into Killeen were super expensive, so I flew into Austin and rented a car instead.  I was hoping we would be able to work in a day trip to Austin but knew with the baby it might be difficult, so I wanted to choose a restaurant for a late lunch after landing.  It was really hard to choose one place from all the awesome-looking vegan food in Austin!

In the end I went with Wheatsville Coop, first because I had heard the tales of their popcorn tofu, and second because I wasn’t sure what would be available food-wise at the cabin or in Salado, so I wanted to pick up a few supplies.

The Buffalo Popcorn Hero was really tempting, but I stuck with the classic Popcorn Tofu Po’boy, which comes with cashew tamari and fresh veggies.  I also picked up a kale and beet salad, mac and cheese from the hot bar, an oatmeal cream pie, and a Blue Sky Jamaican Ginger Ale.

The sandwich was good; the tofu was firm and chewy and made great little fried nuggets.  The salad was really nice, a good mixture of sweet and tangy.  The mac was saucy, warm, and cheesy.  The oatmeal cream pie was a good simulation of the Little Debbie classic; the cookies were chewy and had a strong brown sugar flavor.

Full, happy, and tired, I made the drive to Salado, where I met my baby niece for the first time.

That night we hung around the cabin, ordering pizza delivery for dinner.  I wasn’t very hungry after my big late lunch, so I just asked for a double side salad.  What I didn’t realize is that apparently they put shredded cheese on side salads at a lot of places in the area.  (This began a trend I saw throughout my few days there.)  I just picked the cheese off as best I could.

We chose 9AM as our breakfast time, and being on west coast time and in vacation mode, I slept right up until then (as I did the next two mornings).  Our host Kay had already been hard at work and had everything ready.  My mom had let them know about my diet when booking the rooms and they had said they could accommodate me, but I still had no idea what to expect.

Fresh fruit on a pretty plate is always a good way to start.

While the rest of my family was served an egg casserole, I got my own little plate of veggie sausage patties and bread which had been toasted in margarine.  Kay picks up the bread, which was delicious, from a local bakery.  She also had coffee brewed and offered refills while we ate, in addition to seconds on anything.  She had soy milk for me to use in my coffee, and the cabin was stocked with bottled water, soda, tea, and a few snacks.

We didn’t really have an agenda for the day, so I spent some time taking in the cute Texas decor.  We also got a tour of the barn out back, which they rent out for events.

my brother Tate and seven month old Josie

my parents and Kay

We eventually headed out and walked down Main Street, which is lined with antique shops and all sorts of cute little stores.  We ended up at Adelea’s on Main for lunch, which Kay had recommended.  I forgot to take a picture of my meal, but not because it wasn’t good!

They didn’t have anything vegan on the menu but I noticed that hummus was available as an appetizer special, and there was a veggie wrap that usually came with black beans and artichoke dip.  I asked our waiter if they could sub hummus for the dip on the wrap and he seemed a little flummoxed by my request, but immediately offered to ask the chef and returned with a positive answer.  Despite being a kind of random gathering of ingredients, the wrap was very tasty and nicely grilled, and it came with their freshly made kettle chips.

On the walk back to the cabin we came across Salado Creek Winery.  I was not expecting to see a winery in this tiny town!  My mom and I popped in for a tasting.  Their wines definitely have personality; for example, the Cowpuncher Cabernet.  I do not advocate punching cows though, and I don’t believe they do either :)

I first tried their “Vaquero” Shiraz/Tempranillo Blend, which I like so much that I bought a bottle to bring home.  Shiraz is my favorite wine, and this was a lighter, tangier spin on it.

I also tried the Brown Chicken Brown Cow, a sweet shiraz flavored with chocolate.  The winery’s website says “As far as we know the only ‘chocolate’ wine made in Texas!”.  It was definitely good, but incredibly rich.  A few ounces went a long way.

For dinner that night we headed to Johnny’s Steaks & BBQ, another local restaurant which had been recommended.  It’s the type of joint that puts meat in all the side dishes, so I went for the ol’ side salad and french fries dinner.  The point of being there was to spend time with family, so as long as I got some calories in my belly it was alright.  Josie didn’t want to sit in the high chair, so we took turns holding her and walking around the restaurant, while she made friends with all the other guests.

After we got back I sampled the Red Rabbit Bakery donut holes I had bought at Wheatsville.  They were a little dry, but to be fair it had probably been a few days since they were made at that point.  I liked the flavor.  My brother did not, but my brother is picky.

The next morning, breakfast for the family was french toast, and for me it was waffles piled high with fruit, and veggie sausage links.  The waffles were also gluten free, as Kay was looking to expand her resources for special diets, and they were quite good.

That day we headed out to the Round Rock Premium Outlets for some shopping action.  We took a break for lunch at the food court, which didn’t seem too promising.  I did find Phil’s Philly Grill which had a veggie philly on the menu, so I asked for that without cheese plus a side salad.  Again, the side salad came with unadvertised cheese which I had to pick off.  I also snagged a few of my brother’s curly fries.

After more shopping and the drive back a few of us weren’t feeling so well, so we decided to stay in and take it easy that night.  We were going to call for pizza again, when after searching around I randomly found that the burger place down the road was advertising a vegan veggie burger, actually using the word vegan!  That was a surprise for such a small town.  My mom and I headed to Old Fashioned Burgers and Ice-Cream and placed our order with the one lady working there, who promptly started working hard to make all the food.  I think she may have buttered all the buns but I didn’t say anything since she was clearly busting it to get the food done.

The burger was pretty tasty, and we shared a big order of fries too.

The next morning we were greeted with a gigantic platter of fruit.  I don’t know where Kay was buying the produce, but she managed to find good melons and berries in Texas in December.

The highlight of the fruit was the sugared bananas.  She just rolled sliced bananas in cinnamon sugar, and the sugar takes on the moisture from the bananas and makes something like a glaze.  Delicious.

My main dish was hash browns, veggie bacon, and biscuits made with margarine.

That day we ventured to my brother and sister-in-law’s house in Killeen to check it out, watch football, and for them to get a workout in.  They’re very serious about weight training and power lifting – no breaks on vacation!  For lunch we headed to Red Onion India Bistro, which I was very excited about, only to find that they were closed on Sundays.  Sad Face.  There was a McAlister’s Deli next door, a suitable second choice.

I went for the Spud Ole with veggie chili and jalapenos (no cheese).  I used to go to McAlister’s a lot in Florida, so this was a fun trip down memory lane, as well as a filling meal.

That afternoon, Tate gave us a tour around Fort Hood.  I had never been on a military base, so it was a really interesting experience.  I didn’t realize that some bases are open to the public; Fort Hood has a visitor’s center and two museums.  It’s a lot like a college campus, there are offices, barracks, sports fields and training grounds, as well as business like gas stations, restaurants, and the commissary.

This was the last vehicle out of Iraq after the US withdrew.  Very cool to see.

I’m not sure if you can tell the scale of this helicopter, but it is massive.  Its job is to pick up and move other vehicles and equipment.

For dinner, we went to Texas Roadhouse.  I had a side salad with a dressing off of the “light” menu, a baked sweet potato, and a vegetable skewer.  Not bad for a vegan steakhouse meal.

The next morning I was up early, saying goodbye and driving back to the Austin airport.  I’ll remember this trip as a lot of things:  meeting my niece for the first time, spending time in a cute little Texas town, and eating a lot of potatoes.  A lot.

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VeganMoFo: Semi-Wordless Wednesday

Polenta Rancheros from Vegan Brunch

Tamarind BBQ Tempeh & Sweet Potatoes from Appetite for Reduction

Goddess Nicoise Salad from Appetite for Reduction

Tempeh Pot au Feu from Vegan on the Cheap

Brussels Sprout-Potato Hash from Appetite for Reduction with leek & dill quinoa

potatoes with pumpkin-cheese sauce, bacon bits and green onion

Thai Roasted Root Vegetable Curry from Appetite for Reduction

Creamy Picatta Pasta, roasted vegetables & swiss chard

Kidney Bean & Sweet Potato Jamba Stew from Appetite for Reduction

Ye’abesha Gomen, Mushroom Tibs, and Ethiopian Millet from Appetite for Reduction

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VeganMoFo: Vegan Costco Finds

We joined Costco last year after considering the cost vs benefits; we host guests at our house and tailgate a lot, so buying toilet paper and plastic utensils in bulk probably would have been worth it alone!  I also did some research on whether or not I would be able to find food items.  Google “vegan Costco” and see for yourself!

Dave offered to cover a shared membership if I would do the shopping, which worked out perfectly since I’m cheap and he hates shopping.

I don’t go very often, maybe once a month, but I feel like I find something new and fun almost every time.  Recently they’ve added a separate organic section full of amazing things like Dave’s Killer Bread, coconut water, and flax and chia seeds in large quantities for very reasonable prices.  I was in a hurry last time I went, but you can bet next time I will be stocking my freezer with some delicious Dave’s Killer Bread!

Here are the food items I bought the first two times I went.

Clockwise-ish from bottom left:

  • many pounds of organic short grain brown rice – $12.69
  • two pounds organic raspberries – $3.99
  • big box of Mary’s Gone Crackers (two bags inside) – $7.49 on sale
  • box of like 16 double packs of Eclipse gum – $8.99 on sale
  • 1.5L bottle of Yellowtail Shiraz – $8.69
  • four pack of firm tofu – $3.79
  • eight cans of chickpeas – $5.79 (they had sugar in them [blech] but on subsequent trips the beans have been  without sugar)
  • giant bag of organic baby kale – $3.99
  • delicious sweet mini peppers – $3.99
  • big tub of Sabra hummus, like double the regular size – $5.99

  • six pack of unsweetened Almond Breeze – $8.89
  • ten seaweed snacks – $6.99 (Kirkland brand is a little oilier than Trader Joe’s, but also cheaper)
  • sack of red potatoes – $4.79
  • big bag of organic baby kale – $4.49 (it’s practically impossible for me to pass baby kale and not buy it)
  • eight cans organic diced tomatoes – $5.99
  • eight cans of organic kidney beans – $6.79
  • massive bag of roasted pistachios – $14.99 (might seem like a lot, but if you look at the price of a small bag in a regular store, it’s a good deal.  We love these for baseball games.)
  • more Persian cucumbers than I could eat before they started going bad – $4.99
  • many, many snap peas – $5.79
  • big tub of Pita Pals hummus – $5.99
  • frozen pineapple chunks – $6.59
  • frozen organic “supreme” berry blend – $9.99

Lastly, I impulse-bought this set of four melamine bowls with lids, on sale for $15.99.  I love the colors!

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VeganMoFo: Eat Real 2012

The Eat Real Festival in Oakland has been an annual event since 2009, but I first found out about it last year since a friend was going.  It’s a three-day event with food vendors, a marketplace, demonstrations, a beer shed, wine barn, cocktail bar, and DIY contests.  There’s a lot of meat and cheese and animal celebration going on, but if you can avoid or ignore that part it’s a great place for vegans.  All items are $5 or less, so you can try smaller portions of lots of different things.

The festival posted a list of vegetarian items on their website, and Vegansaurus posted a list from an intrepid vegan who went the first night, so I set out Saturday with an idea of what I’d like to try.

I crossed out what I wasn’t interested in and highlighted what seemed the most intriguing.   I knew it was going to be crowded though, so I didn’t set my heart on anything in particular.

I was starving when we arrived, so I got the first vegan thing I saw, a bowl from Plum.  I was dubious of how all those ingredients were going to work together, and happily discovered that it was delicious.  The vadouvan curry broth was intensely flavorful, and the fresh veggies on top kept it from being to heavy.

It was really hot outside (September seems to be the height of summer around here), so I was seeking out something light and cool for my next dish.  Luckily, we stumbled upon Miss Pearl’s, who was offering marinated black eyed pea salad.  The apple cider vinaigrette was tangy and perfect on the peas and corn.  Plus, only two dollars!

Next up were sweet potato tots with spicy mango ketchup fro Little Green Cyclo.  I think sweet potato tots were less ubiquitous a year ago than they are now, and I needed them.

I was starting to get a little full, so we headed to the beer shed for some liquid refreshment.  They had a great selection of local beers.

You pay a few more dollars for the first beer and get this adorable mason jar to drink out of and take home.  I still use it all the time!

Hodo Soy is a local tofu maker, and I was so glad to see them representing at the festival.  (If you keep up with your vegan news, you may already know that Chipotle is now making vegan burritos using their Sofritas all over California.)  I tried the Kale Pesto Yuba, which I assume is kind of a play on pasta.  The yuba was a little chewy but definitely seemed pasta-esque, and the only fault I found with this dish is that it could’ve used a little more salt.

hello, gorgeous

Before we left, I HAD to get an ice cream sandwich from Big Wheel Cookie Co.  They were running out of lots of their cookies, but luckily they still had the vegan option – dark snickerdoodles with coconut-based chocolate ice cream.  So good.  The cookies were very sturdy and nicely spiced, and the ice cream was generously portioned, a perfect end to a hot day.

Eat Real 2013 is less than two weeks away, and I can’t wait to go knowing that there will be plenty for me to try!  The only thing I regret missing last year is bao from The Chairman, and I see they’re going to be back this year.  I’ve also got my eye on Hella Vegan Eats, Homeroom, No No Burger, and Rice Paper Scissors.

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VeganMoFo: One Day in NYC

Last October I got a last minute opportunity to go to New York City for two nights for a work trip.  I’d been to/through Manhattan a few times but never really had the chance to spend time there and explore, so I jumped at the chance and immediately started researching places to eat.  Food was, of course, the main attraction for me.  My workplace was paying for the flights and two nights at the Hilton Midtown.  I couldn’t afford to pay for another night on my own, so I decided to take a red eye in order to have a whole day to myself before I had to begin work functions.  Red eyes are always a better idea when booking than when actually taking them; I have a hard time sleeping on planes and get pretty wiped out.  But, it was too good of a deal to pass up!

My plan was:
breakfast – Cinnamon Snail
lunch – Candle Cafe
afternoon – Champs for Dun Well donuts or Bagel Store to pick up food for breakfast to bring back
dinner – pizza from Vinnie’s, beers at Brooklyn Brewery
dinner #2 (depending on tiredness/stomach capacity) – Beyond Sushi, Lula’s

When I discovered that Cinnamon Snail’s Friday location was a 15 minute walk from the hotel, my decision for breakfast was easy.  After landing at La Guardia at 9AM, cabbing it to the hotel, and checking in to my room which was surprisingly ready already, I headed to the truck that I had heard so much about.  The weather was overcast and drizzling, but I did not care.

I was absolutely starving and wanted one of the breakfast platters, and opted for the 200 Year Old Frog Man Breakfast Jamboree – maple pecan waffles with cardamom butter, candied pecans & Vermont maple syrup. Served with scrambled tofu, chipotle grilled seitan, and spicy French mustard greens.  I also got coffee, and a donut to enjoy later.  It was really hard to choose from the bakery case, everything looked amazing!

There was nowhere to sit near the truck, so I walked to the nearest park, Bryant Park, which I knew or from watching Project Runway.

This warm meal was perfect to fill my belly on a chilly, dreary morning.  The waffle was incredibly sweet, and incredibly good.  The spiced butter and maple syrup ran into the crevices, and the candied pecans were a nice crunchy contrast.  The greens were pretty bitter (and I like my greens bitter), but good when eaten next to the waffle.  The tofu scramble was standard; I do remember that it had some good herbs in it.  The seitan wasn’t my favorite.  The seasoning was good, but it was a little chewy.  I was plenty full from everything else though!

The next item on my agenda was lunch, so I needed to kill some time.  I checked out Parson’s (also of Project Runway fame) just because it was close by.

I walked through Times Square just to say I saw it, then hung out in the MOMA store for a while, to warm up and buy some Christmas presents.  (They have a great selection of super cute kids books.)

I also stopped by FAO Schwartz to see the piano from Big!  Around lunchtime I was just starting to feel a little hungry, so I started the walk up to Candle Cafe Upper East Side, about a half hour by foot.

The restaurant was pretty full, so I took a stool at the end of the bar, right by the smoothie supplies.

I started with a Green Goddess juice – mixed greens, apple, lemon and ginger.

The sandwiches and daily specials all sounded good, but I was overtired and starting to not feel so hot, so I stuck with the Good Food Plate, where you choose four sides and two sauces.  I went with steamed greens, mac & cheese, grilled tempeh, quinoa pilaf, and tahini and carrot ginger dressings.  The greens and quinoa pilaf were pretty plain, which made them perfect for mixing with the sauces.  The tempeh was well marinated and had a great grilled flavor.  I honestly didn’t love the mac & cheese.  It wasn’t bad, but just wasn’t very flavorful.

I really enjoyed my lunch at Candle Cafe.  The service was quick and friendly, and the people watching was great.  I was dead on my feet for the walk back…so, so tired.  I knew that taking a nap would force me to skip a planned destination or two, but I needed sleep more than anything else at that point.

I woke up after a few hours feeling much better, and recharged with the Cherry Chocolate Pretzel Party donut that I had bought from Cinnamon Snail.  This treat was definitely a party!  Possibly a party with too much going on.  I liked the donut okay, but wished I had stuck with a more classic flavor that I might have enjoyed more.

With that, I ventured over to Brooklyn, taking the NYC subway for the first time ever.  It’s a little confusing if you don’t know exactly where you’re trying to go!  I eventually got on the right train and managed to get off at the right stop, just over the Williamsburg Bridge.  My first stop was The Bagel Store.  I wouldn’t have much time for breakfast the next two mornings, nor were there any appealing options at the hotel, so I picked up some supplies to take back.  The Bagel Store was very cool.  They had all the typical flavors plus some seasonal options, and multiple flavors of tofu-based cream cheese!

From there, I headed to Vinnie’s Pizzeria.

this guy stepped out to instruct his dog just as I was taking a photo

When I first went into Vinnie’s I thought I was in the wrong place, and actually went back outside.  Although I had done my research beforehand, I didn’t see anything about vegan options anywhere.  Plus I think I was a little intimidated by the hipster vibe.  I went back in and found the section of the menu board I had missed, stating that they had vegan slices!  I should’ve taken a picture of the selection.  The guy behind the counter was really nice, and listed out all the vegan flavors for me to choose.  I took my pizza to go, so that I could enjoy it at Brooklyn Brewery.

I was a little sketched out by walking by myself at night, and very happy to turn the corner and see the big Brooklyn logo!

I bought some tokens, got a beer, and dug into the pizza.  I went with an eggplant parmesan slice and a bbq chicken slice, and they were both outstanding.  The crust was crispy even after walking ten minutes, and all the toppings were very flavorful.  They did have the Vegan Mac Attack available (topped with macaroni, ground beef, two cheeses and hot sauce), but I skipped it since I’d had mac with lunch.

As for the beer, it was great.  We used to drink Brooklyn Lager pretty often when we lived in Florida and can’t get it in California, so it’s a treat whenever we can have it.  The brewery is really cool place, it’s a big industrial style room with long picnic tables.  Groups of people were having lively discussions or playing games.  I didn’t mind being there by myself, I sipped my beers while reading a local paper and playing on my phone, and listening to conversations.  After a few beers I was getting really tired, so I gave away my last token and headed back to the hotel.  Despite wanting to go to Lula’s reeeally bad, there was no way I was doing anything else that night.

I had planned to rise early the next morning and run in Central Park, but that did not happen.  I was still on west coast time, and got up just in time to get ready and eat breakfast.

I sliced open the everything bagel from The Bagel Store with a plastic knife and spread on the jalapeno tofu cream cheese, and it was SO GOOD you guys.  I know everyone thinks it’s a joke when people say “New York bagels are better”, but they really are.  I can’t even explain why it was so good, but it was dense and chewy and crispy and light all at the same time, and the jalapeno cream cheese was the perfect complement.  I didn’t really take into account that the whole reason I was there was to talk to people all day…I chewed a lot of gum…

I had to be at my table from 10 to 3, and could only sneak away for 15 minutes and eat what they had available for lunch, which was a plain green salad and a sad veggie sandwich with the cheese taken off.  It was at least enough to get me through the day, along with a good amount of coffee and sparkling water.

After the forum was over I had to pack up and move hotels, since the hotel I was at was booked full for the second night.  The new hotel was right by Koreatown and I needed a quick early dinner before heading out to meet friends, so I checked out Woorijip.

It’s a buffet style, not vegetarian but offering plenty of vegetarian options.  Clockwise from bottom left: rice noodles with kimchi, greens, mung bean sprouts, bok choy and eggplant, seaweed salad, inari, veggie sushi, and tofu with vegetables.

That evening I went to watch the Gator game at a bar in Tribeca (whose name I can’t remember), which was surprisingly filled with fellow Gators!  After taking the subway back it was pretty late, and I needed to pack.  Believe it or not, I was hungry again, so I sought out anything nearby and found there was a Whole Foods a few blocks away that was still open.

Veggie wrap, salad roll with peanut sauce, Sweet & Sara S’more, and a beer.  Good packing fuel.

After a few hours of sleep I was up and getting ready to leave.  I enjoyed the last of my New York food, a pumpkin spice bagel also from The Bagel Store.  It was moist enough to eat on its own, with a cinnamon sugar topping.  A perfect way to end the trip!  I really enjoyed my short time in New York, and would love to go back sometime soon.  Beyond Sushi is at the top of my wish list for next time.

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VeganMoFo: Zachary’s Pizza

Zachary’s Pizza is a well-known pizza joint with four locations around the bay area.  My boyfriend Dave remembers it fondly from his college days, and it was one of the first restaurants he told me about when we moved here.  Out of curiosity, I e-mailed them in early 2009 to inquire if their crust was vegan.  They replied very quickly that, unfortunately, it contained a small amount of butter.

Fast forward to December 2011, almost three years later.  A Zachary’s manager e-mailed me out of the blue to let me know that they now offered a vegan option, the whole wheat crust and Daiya cheese, and they wanted me to be one of the first to know since I had previously inquired.  Talk about customer service!

About a year after that, I finally got the chance to try Zachary’s one random Friday night when Dave and I decided to get pizza on the way home from work.  Their pizzas aren’t cheap by any means, but they’re substantial and you can tell they’re made with quality ingredients.  One or two slices of the “stuffed” Chicago style pizza is easily an entire meal!

I went with the spinach and mushroom pizza, and it was ridiculously incredibly good.  They don’t skimp with the fillings; lots of veggies, melty Daiya mozzarella, and chunky, herby tomato sauce.  You can taste the fresh basil.

Blurry closeup of the deliciousness.  I officially declare that Zachary’s is delicious, worth the price, and awesome for caring about the vegan citizens of the East Bay!

edited:  Dave has requested that I add this picture of Jake, taken right after he ate some of Dave’s pizza.

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VeganMoFo: What I Ate Wednesday

Since I missed blogging yesterday, you get a twofer today!  I follow many blogs that participate in What I Ate Wednesday but have never done it myself, and since most of my MoFo posts are reaching into the past as far back as a year ago, here is something current!

I got up at 5:30 this morning to do 30 Day Shred, a routine I began recently.  I am not a fan of getting up that early, nor of working out first thing in the morning, but I’m already feeling positive changes after one week so hopefully it’s worth it.

After a quick shower, I had a post-workout snack (first breakfast, if you will) – an Oat Snackle.  Snackle is a very cute word I think.  The recipe is from Let Them Eat Vegan, but I found it online here.  It’s kind of a mix between a cookie and a muffin, and it feels very healthy but not too healthy.  It sits in your tummy all happy, giving you nutrients from all the wholesome ingredients.  I’ve been struggling with finding a good post-workout snack since starting the workout program, and these are a great solution – just slightly sweet from the applesauce and raisins, and easy to grab and eat in three or four bites.

My “real” breakfast was enjoyed in the car on the way to work.  This smoothie had almond milk, canned pumpkin, banana, Vega One natural flavor, kale, blackstrap molasses (for the calcium and iron), cinnamon, and ginger.  I’m not ready for the “everything pumpkin” bandwagon yet since it’s been hot around here lately, but I ran out of frozen fruit and resorted to the pantry.

Mid-morning snack of strawberries (I ate half the container) and a few walnuts.  Yes, I am like a baby and have to eat every few hours.  I find that it’s better for me to eat smaller amounts of good foods throughout the day in order to maintain energy levels.  I also tuck my vitamins in the small container, which has backfired on me once.  A small iron pill got caught in the crevices of a walnut half and I bit into it.  In case you are ever wondering, iron pills do not taste good!

packed up for lunch

looking a little prettier for dinner last night

Lunch!  I found the recipe for this Limnian Style Imam Bayildi (eggplant and zucchini stew) on pinterest.  Mine wasn’t quite as nice; I skipped the steps of salting and sauteing the veggies first, and while they were cooked through and tasted good, there was a lot of liquid on the bottom of the pan and not nearly enough sauce.  It was delicious though, so I would definitely try the recipe again when I have time to follow all the steps and double the sauce.  Also shown is whole wheat spaghetti and chickpeas with lemon and red pepper flakes.

Afternoon snack of Trader Joe’s Eggplant Hummus and Persian cucumbers.  I have veggies and dip almost every afternoon, and I particularly like this hummus.  It’s lower in calories than other hummi (plural for hummus), and tastes great.  I take the container to work to eat straight out of it and just cut fresh vegetables every morning.

After work I went for a run, and after that run I ate a banana.  No picture, you know what a banana looks like.  I wasn’t planning to have another snack but I was famished after running and it was going to be a while before dinner.

And what a dinner it was!  Buffalo soy curl wraps with sauteed onion, Daiya swiss, a salad of shredded cabbage, celery, carrot, tomato and dill pickle, and Sanctuary Dressing from Appetite for Reduction.  Sauteed mushrooms with soy sauce in the back.  I’ve had buffalo on the mind since seeing SpaBettie’s Buffalo Jack Sliders earlier this week and this was a great way to satisfy the craving while keeping it light.  Frank’s RedHot Sauce is pretty awesome and I plan to henceforth use it on as many things as possible.

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