Food Fest 7/21/09

I turned a near snack attack disaster into dinner. It just felt right. P.S...I really had no room for dinner anyway after all of the snacking!

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Fun Food Friday!

As new feature on JoggersLife, every Friday I will search the bowels of the weboverse to introduce you to some fun new, healthy & delicious food.  Although I love to share with and give to you, I must admit that the decision to add this feature is mostly selfish.  I love to shop for healthy food online.  I love discovering new foodie jems. So, since I am an obsessive-online-food-browsing-a-holic, you shall reap the rewards.

Without further ado, let today's food fun-ness begin!

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Although not guaranteed to be all fun and new, I had to share a bargain with you first.  ShopOrganic.com has some great clearance deals on Love Force - Organic Raw Lemon Goji Snack Bars & Love Force Organic Raw Bread, 505 Southwestern - Organic Hot Green Chile Sauces, among tons of other items.  Their sale items don't look too shabby either!

You can also save 10% on your first order by using coupon code: GRGDS

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Oh man.  This is a new one for me.  UliMana makes handmade, vegan, raw chocolate truffles, brownies, spreads, hot chocolate mixes, and superfood treats!  So, there's nothing frugal about it...but I just had to share that little piece of loveliness with you.

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Flowers By the Sea is one of the most ingenious ideas I've seen in a while.  You can pre-order seasonal vegetables, plants, and the like from their USDA Certified Organic farm, and they will ship them when they are picked.  For real?  This stuff is fresh people.  I threw a few cucumbers and some lettuce in my cart  just for kicks, and the shipping wasn't even unreasonable.  For 5 bunches of Cocarde lettuce and 18 jumbo Shintokiwa cucumbers (3-6 packs), the cart total after shipping was $44.27.  Their minimum shippable order is $25.

It would seem that for around $150-$200, you could purchase the majority (if not all) of your produce for the season.  This is huge, especially since organic produce is so expensive in the grocery store.  Not to mention, you would receive it direct from the farm.  Hello fresh veggies!  I'm going to find a way to work this one into the budget.

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Another bargain alert, this time from Organic Fruits and Nuts.

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This one is fun.  The Alaska Wild Salmon Company ("Reel Salmon from Real People") will catch real live fish, and send them directly to you.  It doesn't get much fresher than that.  Well...unless you have a future salmon-catching trip planned, of course.  All of their prices include shipping, and that is a-ok in my book.  They also sell smoked salmon, and salmon pet treats.  How cute.

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Have fun looking at all of these goodies!

p.s...Do you like this idea?

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Raw Oat Goodness & Marathon Crazy.

raw-oats This is what raw breakfast looks like this morning. What? You say that it doesn't look raw? That's because raw food isn't really that much different from cooked food, especially at breakfast. This week, I've made it a goal to eat at least one raw meal and one raw snack per day, to see how it makes me feel. I've read some info online about how people feel "energized" and "invigorated". I want some energizing invigoration!

This bowl includes a combination of oat groats, steel cut oats, barley, almond milk, almond butter, 1/2 of a banana, and a little squirt of agave. I allowed everything to marinate overnight so that the oats would soften up a bit, and now I'm thoroughly enjoying the combo. It's surprising how much it tastes like expensive (fattening) granola. It's just a little crunchy (from the oat groats), but its really very good. Trust me. If it sucked, I'd tell you immediately.

I can't say that I've felt energizingly invigorated after eating my raw meals, but I definitely didn't feel bad. Something that I've noticed about raw foods is that no matter how much I eat, I don't feel stuffed. Not to mention, I don't have that need to overfeed...don't get me wrong, the food I'm eating is great, and I could likely overfeed myself. I just don't have the urge to.

Something else I've noticed is that there hasn't been much snacking going on in Joggersville lately. Again, I just don't have the urge to snack. Even while I'm cooking, I don't have a burning desire to pull something out and start snacking. I'm not giving all of the credit for this to raw food eating though. I'd say that a lot of my satisfaction has been related to the great variety of foods that I'm eating lately. This typically keeps me very satiated, and not needing to go overboard in snackyville.

In exciting food news, I have now received all of the cookbooks I ordered from Amazon. In addition, I ordered and already received Ani's Raw Food Kitchen. I've only flipped through the pages, but it seems to be nothing short of amazing.

Another exciting food tidbit is that I also received my beautiful, lovely, spectacular Excalibur Dehydrator. Lemme tell you this...if you want one of these beasts, I have two tips for you.

1) Don't plan on ever using approximately 250 square feet of your counter space again. The thing is not small. To me, it made absolutely no sense to buy this thing and then let it sit in the box somewhere, or stick it in my storage unit and go dig it out every time I want to use it. That felt very noncommittal to me. And that's not how I roll. So, despite the fact that my kitchen is just slightly larger than the size of a postage stamp, I lovingly cleared off one entire section of counter and devoted it to the Excalibur. I haven't used the thing yet, but I have all of the ingredients for coconut carob macaroons, and I'll just say this. Calib had better earn that piece of precious counter space.

2) For the love of all things frugal, please go on eBay and purchase a "blemished" model rather than paying full price for the non-blemished one. I thoroughly inspected this thing. Trust me, I did. There is not a single blemish to be found. At least not to my eye anyway. This makes me feel wonderful, not only because I feel like I got a ridiculous discount on a perfectly beautiful Excalibur, but also because it speaks volumes to the level of quality control standards that Excalibur demands. If they kicked my perfectly beautiful Calib off of the assembly line, then they have very high expectations. I like that.

In running news, my first 1/2 marathon is 9 days away! Holy cow. I was really afraid that the 2 weeks I took off were going to kill me when I started back running, but I haven't had any knee/calf/leg issues that are worthy of mention. That is a total relief. I think that my cross training and core exercises (in addition to the PT exercises that I still do at home) has really done a lot of good. This week, my schedule is 5 miles Tuesday (check!), 3 miles yesterday (check!), 5 miles tonight, and then 10 miles on Saturday. That will (again) be my longest run ever, and my last long run before taper week. I'm not nervous about 10 miles...I'm looking at it with excitement because it'll be a new challenge for me. Not to mention, I have a great out and back route planned--there's something very satisfying for me about running 1/2 way and then being able to turn around and go back. It feels less difficult. It's completely mental. Does anyone else experience this?

One other exciting mention is that last night I watched The Spirit of the Marathon, and it inspired me to change my October 10th 1/2 marathon into a FULL. Now THAT is really exciting, no? I've been tossing the idea around in my head for a while because I really wanted my sister and I to run our first marathon together (call me sentimental), but I didn't know if I was up for the challenge. Last night, while watching that movie, it occurred to me that I can pretty much do anything I set my mind to.

I told my Sista, and she said I was crazy. But she loves my kind of crazy.

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Bob's Red Mill Spice Apple Bran Muffin Mix

A couple of weeks ago, I cheated my terrible luck and actually won a bloggie contest. I suppose that when one enters 94,527 contests, but doesn't win a single one, something eventually has to give. The odds have to swing the other way at some point. You know, the way that makes me win. The odds apparently did just that when I won Sarah's contest. Sarah's blog is really fun, by the way. The girl hasn't spent more than $20 on groceries in like. Well, ever. But she always manages to whip up these gourmet meals, and never goes hungry. That's my kind of girl.

Sarah (and the people at Bob's Red Mill) allowed me to pick out any item I wanted from the Bob's Red Mill website. I decided (rather quickly) on the Spice Apple Bran Muffin Mix.

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And, just for the record, I want you to ignore the bed of Hershey's Kisses that the muffin mix is chillin on. They weren't mine. You can't prove anything.

The nutrition info looked pretty darn good to me. I wasn't concerned with the "as prepared" stats, because I knew I was going to change it up a little.

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Change #1:

Use 3 squished bananas instead of oil. Preferably, one of the bananas should have a large, unsightly bruise. It just tastes better that way. Trust me on this. I know these things.

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Change #2:

Use 1/2 honey and 1/2 agave nectar (in place of all honey or molasses).

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Change #3:

Add 2 tablespoons of milled flax. It's good for you.

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Stir all of the lovely ingredients together

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Place in greased (I used spritzes of olive oil) muffin pan.

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See, now this is where it got a little hairy for me. I preheated my oven to 400 degrees, as the instructions on the package recommended. I don't generally have any issue with my oven being too hot. The instructions said to bake for 15-18 minutes. I set the timer for 15 minutes. Around 14.5 minutes, my smoke alarm started blaring.

Thankfully, it was just a false alarm. There was apparently a crusty little burned nugget of something or another on the bottom of the oven. The crusty burned nugget decided to catch on fire. Crisis averted. Apple banana flax agave honey spice muffins saved.

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Do you see this little baked-in banana squish? Yeah, so I totally planned that.

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Moist and delicious. It never stood a chance.

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Apple banana flax agave honey spice peanut butter muffins? Pinch me.

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In light of the delicious yumminess of Bob's Apple Spice Muffin Mix, I'm awarding them the Jogger's Seal of Approval. Buy it. It's good.

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Bloggie Giveaways and Such

Have you checked out the Blog Bake Sale yet? If not, you should...there are a ton of delicious goodies over there up for bid, and the funds are going to a great cause. check it out! Oh She Glows is giving away a selection of Jocolat Bars.

Also, The Hungry Yogini is giving away a one-month supply of Fage yogurt. Please don't enter this one. I want it.

I am completely preoccupied with food today.

What did everyone have for lunch? I'm hungry.

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MORE WINE, PLEASE! And A Sake Bomb Too!

My birthday celebration week is over. My financials are almost finished.

My crazy life has again calmed down to a state of manageable chaos.

I feel relieved.

But, I do have this abnormal pain behind my right ear. And a bruise on the right side of my chin. And one on my right hip. And everything kind of "hurts" today. Actually, everything kind of "hurt" yesterday. When I woke up at 11:30AM. After a night of drunken debauchery.

And I didn't remember what I did to cause these rogue bruises on my chin. And behind my ear. And on my hip.

As the day unfolded, while laying on the sofa watching repeats of House Hunters International, bits and pieces of the night started to roll through my mind. Sort of like a movie. A bad, bad movie.

It began with a surprise party at Honey Pig Korean BBQ, which was such a sweet gesture from My Gazelle. Such a sweet gesture. A sweet, sweet, sweet gesture. Just not exactly the place for a girl who hasn't eaten meat in a month.

When we walked in, I had flashbacks of when my ED was in full swing, and I dreaded going out to public places and eating for fear that nothing on the menu would "fit" into my plan for the day. It was scary and intimidating.

I wanted to appear gracious. It's not everyday that I receive this type of surprise treatment, and this was my first birthday party with friends since turning 13. And it was a surprise! And he planned the whole thing! I needed to make sure that I didn't appear put off at all by the piles of meat cooking in front of me, lest I receive no future surprises due to my not-so-appreciative behavior. I made sure that Jenifita (the queen Veggie Girl) sat right next to me. She proudly announced to everyone that she is a vegetarian (since I am not quite feeling full vegetarian-ownership as of yet), and meat-free food was ordered on her behalf.

Approximately 10 minutes later, a large metal bowl of soba noodles with chunks of ice and slivered cucumbers were placed in front of us. Soon after, a pot full of extra super spicy cabbage stuff arrived.

What can I say...I have no idea what I was eating. It was ordered on our behalf. The frozen noodles were weird, but we just went with it.

Personally, after the first 2 shots of Korean "wine" (which is consumed from shot glasses, and wasn't wine at all), I didn't care how cold the noodles were or how spicy the pot of cabbage was. Jenifita is pregnant, so she didn't partake. And left very hungry!

"MORE WINE, please!"

We ended the night at Temple Lounge, which just happens to be one of my favorite places in the universe. The Asian-inspired atmosphere, the friendly staff, the fusion cuisine and sushi. Unfortunately, I was far too drunk to fully enjoy any of the above. Frankly, after the 3 sake bombs caught up with me, I barely remembered my name.

And, my chin hurts.

I seem to recall something about a slippery bathroom floor and a handicapped "safety" bar. I suppose it's not very safe when you're bashing your head on it.

Um. Yeah. Not my most shining moment.

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Italy, Meet Poland

I like sauerkraut. I like pierogies. I have to like sauerkraut pierogies.

Right?

Wrong!

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