Tag Archives: Whole Foods
As promised … the Energy Bars! These are a yummy treat, too, and I feel like it is a recipe you can really play around with. For example, I added a 1/2 cup of oat bran to my batch for a little extra fiber. And Dan made ones that were flavored with peanut butter instead of the raisins and apricots that are used in this recipe. Another thing I am going to try is substituting the eggs with bananas. By the way, this is another one from Ellie Krieger. I love this book!
Have fun, and create your own. They are tasty!
Makes about 20 servings
1 cup quick cooking rolled oats
1/2 cup raw unsalted sunflower seeds
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
1/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup dried apricots
1/2 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup pitted dried dates
1/2 cup powdered nonfat dry milk (I used about 1/3 cup soy milk instead.)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
2 large eggs
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 9 by 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Place all ingredients except the syrup and eggs in a food processor and pulse until the mixture is finely chopped. Add the syrup and eggs and pulse until the mixture is well combined. It will resemble a coarse paste.
Transfer to the baking pan and spread evenly. Bake until just done, about 20 minutes. Cut into 20 squares.
It has been a crazy few days with my computer on the fritz. And as a consolation prize to you having missed my Challenge posts so darn much, I will be making up for the last three days with a few extra posts.
So, get ready! Here we go:
Breakfast this morning was on the run. Dan and I had a meeting to attend and before I knew it, it was time to leave. I grabbed a chocolate peanut butter Special K Protein bar and a glass of water with a dash of 100% pure cranberry juice. This was the first time I tried these bars and they are quite tasty! They did not taste like some of the other bars I have sampled — chalky, cardboard-like, you know the drill — and it actually did hold me over until I arrived home for a small snack (1 cup of low-fat vanilla yogurt). These Special K babies clock in at 180 calories, 6 g fat, 5 g fiber and 15 g sugar. Now, I don’t usually supplement meals with a bar, but they are a good emergency plan when your schedule just doesn’t allow for a sit-down breakfast. Plus, I would rather eat a bar than nothing at all!
I completely forgot to photograph lunch before I chowed down, but I had about 3.5 oz. canned tuna mixed with 1 1/2 Tbsp. Lemonaise Light and 1/8 cup dried cranberries. I put it between some lettuce leaves and two slices whole grain bread. Mmmm!
When I had finished lunch, Dan stopped home to say hello and brought some flowers he had picked on his way inside. I thought I would share … pretty, huh? What a sweetie.
After I said goodbye to Dan, I had to make a quick trip to Whole Foods. When I arrived, there was a huge Top Chef truck in the parking lot. Apparently, members from the show travel to different areas across the country, cook up some good food and put on a show for a few visitors. I didn’t have time to wait around for a show, but I did snag some yummy tuna with olive tapenade on a little slice of bread.
After the grocery store, I went home and did some more work. A few hours later, it was time for dinner! My brother, Isaac, is visiting tonight, so I made him one of his favorites — homemade Mac & Cheese! I based my recipe loosely on the one I have tried before from Ellie Krieger’s The Food You Crave: Luscious Recipes for a Healthy Life.
I changed it up substituting whole wheat noodles for 1/2 of the plain pasta the recipe calls for; so, that means I had 8 oz. whole wheat and 8 oz. plain pasta. I also added a bit more cheese to make it creamier which, obviously, changed the calorie content of the dish. But that’s the way Isaac likes it and I wanted him to be happy! (: I had a bowl, and I was totally stuffed . . . macaroni is filling!
Well, that’s it for the night. Although, I did pick up some of those fabulous Whole Foods Chewy Brownie Cookies, so I may just have to have one of those!
We’ll just have to see . . . (;
While it has become easy to look around at the Earth and point out everything that is harming it, I have realized that I also need to take time to notice all the efforts that are already being put toward saving it.
The thing is, once you begin to focus on the negatives, it becomes quite a simple pattern. But during a trip to Whole Foods today, I recognized that there are indeed many people who are hell-bent on making our world a better place.
I was walking through the parking lot when I noticed the new signs that the store had implemented. They read: “BYOB: Remember Your Reusable Bags.” No, the BYOB is not the kind of your college days; instead, it stands for what you might have assumed — Bring Your Own Bag!
Now, of course, a place like Whole Foods is chock-full of people who are working toward making our planet a better one. But today, they really went all out, including the debut of their blue recycling containers for your home and the announcement of the winner from their art made from recycled materials contest. The design at the top of the post is a poster of the winner — look close and you will see a water bottle and laundry detergent container.
Upon leaving, I also spotted new signs in the parking lot that designate spots for people who drive vehicles that run on alternative fuel. I thought it was an interesting way to reward people who are making a difference with their choice of transportation.
What’s more, I love walking to the bookstore or grocery store, and seeing a line of bicycles outside. I have not yet made the switch to a bike, but that certainly is such a fabulous alternate way to get from A to B. And of course, more and more people are opting for reusable bags instead of paper or plastic. What a fantastic small change, seeing as how according to several studies it takes more than 1000 years for plastic to decompose.
It made me so happy, on this day that recognizes our Earth, to see so many people working to improve not only their own lives, but the lives of others — both present and future. And while many of us, including myself, are imperfect people, it is reaffirming to see that the effort is there.
And that gives us all a bit to lean on, right?
What a whirlwind of a weekend/Monday and Tuesday!
Let’s start at the beginning, shall we?
In case I have yet to mention it, my fiancé Dan, is a dancer. Please spare him (and me!) the jokes about the tutus and twirling — we’ve heard them all. (:
Anyway, it is currently audition season and Dan has been spending a lot of time auditioning for dance companies across the country, so he can get one of those little things called . . . a job.
So, when we found out he would be going to New York City for an audition, I was more than happy to oblige to be his travel buddy. The Big Apple (city that never sleeps, Empire State, yada, yada, yada) is, after all, my all-time favorite city.
So, we spent Friday night driving to his cousin’s house just outside of Philadelphia, so we could sleep there and only have to drive about two hours the next morning to his audition in NYC.
We slept, we ate breakfast, we drove, we got there on time.
I walked him to the City Center, kissed him goodbye, bid him merde (it’s a dancer thing) and made my way over to Central Park.
I was going to sit for awhile in the park and just take in the atmosphere, but I decided I was a bit hungry and would get something small from the Whole Foods in Columbus Circle, which is right by the park. That way, my stomach would not be grumbling, but I would be saving room for the insane amount of cheesecake that I was planning on eating later at the Carnegie Deli. Too good to even try to put into words.
So, I got a mish-mash of things to try at the Whole Foods salad bar, and happily walked back over to Central Park, so that I could sit on a rock an enjoy the beautiful day while I was noshing.
And I am eating, and eating, and eating, and enjoying, when I notice something hard in my Five Grain Salmon Salad. No big deal, I’m in New York, everything is fantastic . . . I push it aside and get a new bite. I bite down, and CRACK.
My tooth snaps in half. I mean all the way up the center. And then, it does not even break off, it just dangles there like the loose tooth I have not experienced since grade school.
So, I call mum because she knows everything and she tells me to call my dentist, so that I can obtain the emergency number. I, unfortunately, have experienced one too many tooth problems and know exactly what he is going to tell me to do anyway. So, when he does not answer, I take charge of the situation and head off to a drugstore for some denture plaster.
By the time I buy some temporary filler for the crack in my tooth, Listerine and a tooth brush to go, I end up spending about 15 bucks at the dang store.
Now, here is the kicker. Because Dan and I are attempting to save money on this adventure, we are not even staying overnight. Instead, we had planned to drive the six hours back to Pittsburgh in order to avoid spending too much moolah.
So, I do not even have a private bathroom where I can try to temporarily fix my tooth. Therefore, I decide to go to the nearest hotel, find their public bathrooom and station myself at the sink.
I whip out my filler — all for the viewing pleasure of the group of women waiting to use the restrooms — and begin to work. I am mid-rinse in the prepatory phase of my dental work, when two little girls walk up to me.
“What are you doin’?” the one with light brown hair says to me, her neck crooked as she tries to look up and into my mouth.
I explain to her that my tooth is broken and I am trying to fix it, and she loudly announces to her mother — and the entire facility — “Mom, she broke her tooth!” and points at me.
Her mother, who is pretty much disgusted by this news, looks at me with a “What the heck is wrong with you?!” face and begins to shuttle her daughters in the opposite direction.
I am now the creepy woman from New York City who this family will talk about when they arrive home. This story about the woman with the broken tooth and denture cream will be met with sighs of, “Only in New York!”
So, after becoming the image of New York that those young children will now carry with them for quite some time — not the horses, not the roasted nuts, but the girl with the tooth — the repair kit does not even work.
I give up. Instead, when I finally see Dan after his audition, we walked over to Central Park, sat on a bench, and I leaned my head back on his lap while he shoved the plaster between the new hole in my teeth.
At that point my unsanitary and obnoxious actions had really just hit an all-time high for the day, so I figured, “Why not in the middle of a major, crazy busy, people-filled park?”
So, I spent the rest of the day nursing my injury — which by the way, did not hurt — and eating as many soft foods as I could find. Good thing cheesecake fits that description.
In between that time, Dan and I also went on a mission to track down the Trader Joe’s Wine Store because we wanted to purchase a few bottles of Two Buck Chuck, a Trader Joe’s wine that, for its cheap price of $2.99, was supposedly pretty decent. Pennsylvania stores do not allow the sale of alcohol, so we wanted to investigate a bit while we had the opportunity. We honestly walked around the general area of where the store was located for a good 45 minutes. We could not find it, and asking for help is, of course, just not an option. We were so desperate to buy cheap, good wine, you would have thought we have severe drinking problems. It was really quite pathetic.
We finally gave in to asking for a bit of help, walked another eight LONG blocks to get there and got our stupid wine. We haven’t tried it yet, but it better be really effing good.
So, here I am today.
I finally got my tooth fixed — which, by the way, did not hurt because I had already had a root canal on it — and am sitting at home. The cheescake it gone and my mouth is a bit sore. I am not in the mood for food right now.
There are, however, five bottles of Two Buck Chuck sitting on my counter.
Hmmm. Crazy tooth lady from NYC might just have to enjoy a glass . . .
Dan buying me my favorite roasted nuts the last time we visited NYC. They, unfortunately, did not fall into the soft foods category. ):