Let’s Go Streaking!

Ok actually you can and should do this with your clothes on!

My brother-in-law started a fun facebook group called The Running Streak Group.

Basically the idea is to run (at least) 1 mile everyday, never missing a day.  You can see the United States Running Streak Association for more info!

Starting April 1st, I’m going to try to run at least 1 mile everyday!  Sounds kind of fun right?  Anyone want to join me?  Feel free to join the facebook group!  Good way to make sure you get moving at least a little bit everyday!

I wish I had more exciting eats to show you all, but unfortunately I’ve been running around like a chicken with its head cut off for the past few days!   I’m trying to get together school work, apply for internships and be the overall rockstar that I am!

This morning I made a green monster for breakfast and in my rush out the door, forgot it.  That was upsetting… luckily I wasn’t hungry this morning.

But I’m pretty excited for lunch. I’m trying something new!

Tempeh with jam and spinach! (Note my super bread slicing skills aka super uneven!) Ready to go…

Sounds like an interesting combo!  I’ve seen it around the blog world!  I’ll let you know how it is. Have you ever had the tempeh/preserve/sweet combo?  Did you like it?


In other news, my Stress-Less March idea is working really well.  While it sucks to have to take everything with me and lug it around campus all day, it’s really nice to get so much done and come home and sort of relax for a bit.

I’m in the library so I should probably get to work.  Hope you have a great day!!


I Have Bad Taste in Music but…

Have you ever noticed that “small talk” usually refers to talking about the weather, music, books and movies?

Whenever someone asks me what kind of music I listen to I usually tense up.  A typical young adult conversation goes something like this:

Person 1: What kind of music do you listen to?

Person 2: Oh a little bit of everything… (at this point the person is being polite but eagerly anticipating spouting off a list of the great)

Person 1: What are some of your favorites?

Person 2: Well, Radiohead, The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd… (note: if you’re talking to a hipster you’ll probably get some obscure band in there and maybe a Le Tigre or Rilo Kiley).

Person 1: Awesome, I love Radiohead.

That’s not really how it happens for me.  Usually, I avoid that question at all costs by turning it around and asking what they listen to, because let’s be realistic no one wants to hear that your favorites are Beyonce and Shakira.  Should you dare to admit which ones you actually like, you are bound to be met with a confused glare and an undoubted perceptive drop in IQ in the mind of the asker (the exception to this being foreign pop… if you like that, you’re golden.  Thank God for Juanes).

So while my musical taste may be abysmal, I feel that I have two redeeming qualities: movies and baking.

I like my fair share of ridiculous movies (ahem… New Moon… *cough*), but I like Wes Anderson movies as much as the next person and thought Raging Bull was great! I feel that I can adequately have a semi-productive conversation with a “movie snob.”

My other redeeming quality…

Blueberry Coconut Oat Muffins with Maple Oat Topping

1/2 cup apple sauce
1/2 a small banana mashed
2 1/2 tbsp almond butter
1 egg
1/3 cup agave nectar
1/2 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut
1/2 fresh or frozen blueberries
splash of milk, water or juice if batter too firm (I added about 1/4 cup)

Preheat oven to 350degrees. Combine all the wet ingredients in a bowl.  Add the dry ingredients (fold in blueberries at the end). Fill greased muffin pan with batter (about half full), top with crunchy maple oat topping (recipe below).  Bake for 20-25 minutes depending on strength of your oven. (Note: you can veganify them by adding an extra 1/4 cup of applesauce or another half of banana instead of the egg)

Crunchy Maple Oat Topping

2 tbsp flour
1/4 cup oats
1/2 tbps coconut oil
1 1/2 tbsp maple syrup

Mix together with your fingers to get a crumbly topping.

I may not know everything there is to know about “good” music, but I can make a hell of a muffin from scratch!

Not to mention they’re low fat and pretty healthy as far as muffins go.

Back to school work… Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Slimmed Down Coconut Cardamom Rice Pudding

Last week in NYC, I went to Rice to Riches for a pre-NYC departure treat with some friends.  This place is basically like an ice cream parlor, but instead of ice cream they serve rice pudding.  Let me just tell you.  It was delicious! (I even kept the cool tupperware container it came in!)

Ever since then, I’ve been wanting to make my own.  However, I realize that rice pudding can be a flat out FATTY treat.  So why not try to make mine a little healthier? (And cheaper!  My friend an I shared the “Epic” size and it was $8!  Isn’t that nuts?!!?!)

Coconut Cardamom Rice Pudding

inspired by Joy of Baking’s Rice Pudding Recipe

1/3 cup short grain brown rice (any length grain should work fine)
2 1/2 cups non-fat milk
1-4 tbsp sugar depending on how sweet you want it (4 made it EXTREMELY sweet, I would try it with 1 or 2 first )
1/3 cup unsweetened coconut
1 tsp cardamom powder
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp cornstarch

Place rice and milk in a sauce pan and bring milk to a boil (stirring occasionally to make sure it doesn’t burn on the bottom).  Simmer for 25-30 minutes (stirring every few minutes) until rice is al dente.  Remove from heat and stir in coconut, sugar, cardamom, and vanilla.  In a small bowl mix together cornstarch and some of the milk, once you’ve removed any clumps, add it to the pot.  Place back on medium/low heat stirring occasionally until thick.

Transfer pudding to individual bowls or one large container.  Serve warm or cold!

Soo good!  May have eaten a little too much…

This was like a delicious, creamy (Indian) dessert!

Now back to actual school work 😦 Not excited for this!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Toad in a Hole + Eggplant Deliciousness

Sometimes, I want to make something, but don’t want to eat it (this happens pretty often with a lot of sweets).  This morning I made the fella something fun that I like to make but don’t like to eat (namely because of my irrational aversion to crispy egg): Toad in a Hole.

I used Apple Oat Bread from Wegman’s.  Cut a hole in with a cup.  Buttered the bread.

Put it in a pan on medium heat.

Cracked in an egg.

Covered it for 3 minutes (ish)

Flipped and served!

Thank goodness the lovely fella was around to eat it!

Are a fan of toad in a hole?

Later in the day, I tried one of Jenn’s recipes that looked absolutely amazing: Eggplant Lasagna!

This isn’t your average lasagna!  Instead of pasta noodles it has QUINOA!

I followed her recipe almost exactly except I used some pasta sauce Rhoda made and added some chopped spinach to bulk up the sauce with extra veggies.

OMG delicious!  Make it now! Perfect for those who aren’t huge fans of pasta like me 🙂

Jenn, this is flat out wonderful!

Did anyone watch Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution tonight? In case you missed it, you can watch it online free at abc.com.  Since you all had a lot of great feedback/comments on my previous post on Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, I’ll dedicate a whole post to the new episode in the days to come.

Ugh spring break is almost over 😦 Say it ain’t so!

Enjoy your night!!

It’s Rarely Sunny in Upstate NY

Today we had sunshine!  It was great!

The fella and I took advantage of the sunshine for a little drive upstate to Rochester.  You’re probably wondering why on Earth anyone would go to Rochester, right?  It was actually a lot more fun than I thought!

We started with a scenic drive along Cayuga Lake:

Once in Rochester went to the George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film:

For some reason I thought the bathroom was super cool….

And what good food blogger wouldn’t take pictures of fake cookies in the study…

Once we had seen the extent of the museum and house, we walked around outside and had a mini photoshoot:

While I’m a fashionista apparently my photographer doesn’t have too much of a steady hand…

I still applaud his efforts!

By this time, I was ready to gnaw my arm off.  The fella had a hankering for BBQ, thus…

Apparently it’s an Upstate NY institution?

What does a non-meat eater get at a BBQ joint?  Fried Green Tomatoes and a Smoked Veggie Sandwich!  Unfortunately I was so hungry I forgot to take a picture of the deliciousness!  Trust me, it was deeeelissh!!

After lunch/dinner (dunch?) we headed to the shores of Lake Ontario!

I hate the beach…

But we had a lovely time!

Blurry pictures and all!

Now we’re back! I better hurry up and hit Publish because the fella has been dying to watch New Moon all day! :p

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution

In the food blogging world, we’re all into the most exciting healthy, “real” foods.  A purple potato gives a sweet potato a run for its money.  A smoothie chalk full of spinach elicits a smile.  Kale is probably the most exciting things since sliced bread.  Outside the healthy food blog world, I don’t think this is particularly common…

This morning, I watched the first episode (or sneak peek, first episode premieres on Friday March 26th) of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.

I was really torn while watching this for one major reason: who is he to go into this town and tell people they need to change?  I don’t disagree that there needs to be a change, but can we really tell people that what they are doing is wrong?    I was so shocked when people in the town were so resistant to Jamie.  It made me question whether people can change.

In my field, we face similar issues all the time.  In all my classes, people spout out recommendations, and I’m always the first one to point out that you can’t change what people do.   Planners want people to live in high density areas, but I know that not everyone wants to do that.  Who am I to tell you that you can’t live in the suburbs?  Planners want people to use their car less, but I know that no everyone is going to take public transit, bike or walk. You can change people’s options, but you can’t make them do something they don’t want to do.

I value people’s right to choose how to live their lives, but obviously based on the field I’m in, I also want people to live better lives.  There’s a fine line between recommendation/suggestion and paternalism.

Is food the exception?  Should we be able to tell people that they are eating terribly because it is detrimental to their health and ultimately harming society?

Honestly, I feel like a little bit of a hypocrite saying food is the exception, but to some extent I see it as a life and death situation.  Although, I understand that for some sprawl and over use of cars is as well in terms of the environment.

Whether or not you’ve seen the show, what do you think is the best way to get people to change their eating habits?  Should we even bother?  Should we let those who choose to eat poorly (for whatever reason… economic, cultural, social, etc.) just eat what they want?  Should we be concerned about the health of others or is health a personal thing that we need not meddle in?

I’m interested to see the next episode this Friday.  It’s definitely a show that’s right up my alley.

Anyone else watch this or interested in watching this show?

Anyway, the fella is here so we’re spending some time together.  Blogging might be a little sparse this week.

Hope the weather is better where ever you are!  Have a great day!

Lemon Cake filled with Creamy Goodness

I slept in til noon!  Isn’t that ridiculous!?!  Well maybe not for some, but for someone who rarely wakes up past 7:00am, it’s a miracle!  I must have been pooped from the weekend!  Sadly, I woke up with a sore throat and an overall gross/sore/tired feeling (I consumed several cups of echinacea tea  throughout the day to feel better… not working yet…).

So I lounged around most of the day and read blogs, as promised.  I also watched Pride and Prejudice and proceeded to cry my eyes out.  That movie gets me every time!  Love it!  After a full day of doing nothing, I started to get pretty bored, so naturally I decided to bake, because let’s face it, I would.

Lemon Cake

adapted from Raspberry Laced Vanilla Cake

1 1/2 cup cake flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
3/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup + 2 tbsp sugar
1/3 cup lemon juice (or juice of 1 lemon plus enough water/milk to make 1/3 cup)
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp vanilla
2 eggs

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cream together butter and sugar.  Zest lemon and add to mixture, add lemon juice/water/milk, vanilla, eggs and beat for a few seconds til combined.  Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and beat together until combined.

Pour dough into 2 9 inch cake pans (greased and floured), or cupcake pans, or mini loaf pans or whatever other shape (I used mini heart shaped pans).  I baked my heart shaped pans for 15 mins, for a larger cake you’ll probably need about half an hour.

Before or after, make the custard filling.

Homemade Vanilla Custard

adapted from Joy the Baker’s PB Banana Cream Pie

1 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp vanilla
3 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
3 tbsp corn starch
pinch of salt

Heat milk and vanilla in a sauce pan on low heat to prevent burning (stir occasionally).  In the meantime, in a bowl mix together egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch and salt.  Once the milk starts to simmer, stir in a small amount (about 1/3 cup should be fine) of the milk to your egg mixture.  Then add the egg mixture to the rest of your milk.  Stir constantly for about 5-10 minutes until thick.  Put in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap (lay plastic wrap on the custard to keep it from forming a weird film/skin/hardened layer) and chill in the fridge.

Super Fruit Buttercream Frosting

1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened
1/2 cup Crofter’s Super Fruit spread (I used the South America Flavor, but any type of jam, especially raspberry would be delicious)
~3 cups powdered sugar

For the frosting, cream together the butter and fruit spread, gradually add powdered sugar until you get your desired consistency.

In addition the the Super Fruit Buttercream, I made a traditional buttercream with just butter, powdered sugar, vanilla and milk.

To assemble the mini cakes (once cakes have cooled), level off the top of each mini cake (or each big cake if you used 9 inch round pans), spread a layer of fruit spread (suggest you microwave it for a few seconds for easy spreading), then a thick-ish layer of custard and press on the second cake layer (repeat if you want to do more than 2 layers).

One of these will go to the fella.  The other three plus the 4 cupcakes are up for grabs.

Well I guess that sufficiently entertained me for a few hours and also made good use of leftovers (had some egg yolks left over from an omelet and milk left over from Pi Day).

These probably would have been a good idea for Valentine’s Day.  Oh well!

Off to bed!  Have a great night!

P.S. In case you’re interested, here are some more pictures from NYC!

Concrete Jungle Where Dreams Are Made Of

Hi all!

I’m back!  NYC was great!  I’ll give a short photo recap of the happenings.  I took pictures of some meals, not all (since most people in my program don’t know I have a food blog… sort of embarrassing… oh well).

The trip started off Thursday (after a 5 hr bus ride) at the Brooklyn Army Terminal…

Where we got a tour on a NYC Water Taxi.

It was amazing!  We talked about maritime transport (because planner worry about these things…)

and infrastructure

and the other New York type things…

Then we headed to our hotel and to a reception with other Cornell Alums at Rockefeller Center.  Wine and appetizers were enjoyed… delicious! Then there was an unphotographed night of enjoyment (may have had a little too much wine…).

The next morning, I got up bright and early and headed to Balthazar Bakery for breakfast, where I got the most amazing asparagus, mushroom and cheese croissant and some pretty tasty coffee:


My friend, Celia, got a chocolate croissant.

Looked amazing as well.  After that we headed up to Harlem for a tour of Harlem.  Awesome looking outdoor grocery store (perfect for my food systems planning interest)

and on our lunch break I got a mango with lime, salt and chile!

Sooo delicous!  They’re better in LA but this was great after not having had one in so long!  Actual lunch was unpictured “soul food”… Collard greens, rice and beans and plantains… soo good!

Then we headed to the High line, which is basically every planner’s dream.  It’s an old rail line that was converted into public space.  Pretty cool in my opinion.

Then some more walking around, over to Battery Park and the Irish Hunger Memorial (no idea this existed)

and finally ground zero.  The night ended with a broadway show: Fela!

I was thoroughly entertained.  Great African booty shaking and an interesting message (kind of sad at times).  Definitely recommend it, although I know not everyone liked it. After the show there was fun-ness with friends.

Saturday, we headed back to Ithaca at noon.  I had a fun time!  It was nice to hang out with my CRP friends and not have to worry about school work.  Spring break starts now!  So excited to do absolutely nothing!

Tomorrow will be spend lounging, catching up on blog reading, maybe baking and potentially watching the Cornell basketball game with some friends.

Glad (but maybe a little sad) to be back!  Have a great Sunday!!

New York…

Hi all!

Hope you’ve had a great day!

I’m going to be MIA for the next few days.  I’m going to NYC to city plannery type things!

Be back Saturday!! Enjoy the rest of your week!

Stew in a Jar

Food bloggers are weird.

We take pictures of food…

Have an unnatural obsession with strange health foods (I mean who else really eats Chia seeds…)

We get super excited about new jars of nut butter…

and even more excited when the jar is empty so we can have oats in a jar.

Now, you can have another reason to get excited about an empty jar of peanut butter: Stew in a Jar

Stew in a Jar

1 tsp coconut oil or olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
2 tomatoes, diced (or a small can of diced tomatoes)
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 sweet potato, diced
1/2 tsp curry powder
2 shakes of cinnamon
Cayenne to taste
3 shakes of paprika
1-2 cups water or vegetable broth
salt and pepper to taste
1 nearly empty jar of natural peanut butter (or just a spoonful of peanut butter)

Heat the oil, add all ingredients onions, garlic, celery and carrots.  Cook til onions are translucent, add tomatoes, sweet potato and spices and stir.  Add water or broth, bring to a boil and simmer for 20 minutes.  Spoon stew into nearly empty PB jar.  Stir and enjoy!  Serves 2-3.

Pretty delicious!  Definitely making this again!

I feel like I’m so close to the end!  Today I was in the library from 11:00am til 5:00pm with a short break for a 1 hr class (which I ended up cutting short…) and a 20 min nap.  Got a lot done though!

In the next hour, I hope to:
-Wrap up my econ paper: I’m doing an economic analysis of the Proposed NY State Beverage Tax!
-Finish 1/4 of a question and rewrite my econ take home midterm… I can draw a mean indifference curve!
-Do the dishes!

Wish me luck!

Have a good night!!