Cupcakes and Shoes! What a Hoot!

I woke up this morning feeling like P.Diddy pretty good.  The weather is gross, but all is well in the world.  I hung out with friends and may have done a bit of shopping.

What girl doesn’t need another pair of shoes?

Basically I’m ready for summer.  All I need is somewhere to go in these shoes… and a tan! (Note: No flash was used in this picture.  I hope this is a lighting issue and I’m not actually that pale!)

I also made cupcakes!  I’m dying to get a cake decorating set (any secret admirers out there want to shower me with gifts? ), but in the mean time I’ll make due with a knife, a zip loc bag and my trusty cupcake book.

I cheated.

I used box mix and canned frosting.

After not using box mix/canned frosting for so long, I realized how much better my homemade frosting is!

I hope my friends enjoy them!  Maybe I’ll get to work some of it off by dancing the night away with the chicas!  Who knows? Either way, I’ll probably have a fun time.

Have a great night!!

Random Question:  Favorite type of dog?  or are you a cat person?

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Switching It Up

The past few days I’ve been in a little big of a bloggy slump.  I’ve taken pictures of things, but sadly have been unmotivated to write anything.  Perhaps because I wrote a good sized term paper or maybe my current frustrations with health food blogs.  This morning, while watching CNN on the elliptical, I heard a ridiculous news story related to food/dieting.  I started formulating a post in my head and was pretty excited to share it, but then stopped myself.

Will I offend someone?  Might this hurt a reading struggling from an eating disorder?

I don’t want either of those things to be the case.  I want this to be fun, not stressful.

So I’ve decided, at least for now, to post my healthy meals and usual fatty treats that I pawn off to my friends and stop talking about health, weight, fitness, etc.

I like food.  I’m sticking to it.

So without further delay:

Today was rainy, which meant that something warm was in order.

Black Bean “Tamale” Pie

adapted from Eggs on Sunday’s Black Bean Tamale Pie

1-3 tsp olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1/2 red pepper, diced
1 tsp garlic, minced
1/2 tbsp chili powder
1/2 tbsp cumin
1/2 cup black beans, cooked
1/2 cup frozen corn
1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes with liquid
A few shakes of cinnamon
A few shakes of Cayenne
few ounces of cheese (I used 1 or 2 oz)
1 cup cornmeal
2 1/2 cups water
salt to taste
1 egg beaten
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar

In a skilled heat the oil and cook the onions and garlic for a few minutes.  Add peppers, cook for a few more minutes.  Add spices, tomatoes, beans and corn.  Bring to a boil, transfer to baking dish and sprinkle with cheese.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium sauce pan, combine water, salt and cornmeal.  Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, keep stirring until cornmeal is thick (about 5 minutes).  Turn off heat.  Add beaten egg, baking powder and sugar.  Top the bean mixture with the cornmeal mixture and bake for about 40 minutes.

Pretty tasty.  The “tamale” part formed a weird crust that I wasn’t a fan of, but other than that it was delicious!  It sort of reminded me of the Kashi Mayan Harvest Bake that I’m obsessed with.  I bought a plantain that is taking far too long to ripen.  As soon as that puppy is black, I’m trying to conquer the Mayan Harvest Bake!

Have a wonderful weekend!!

Taco Flavored Kisses

You’re probably all too refined to watch South Park, but my lunch reminded me of that episode.

Taco Salad!  (But way healthier and probably more delicious!)

Started with:

  • Romaine (~ 3 cups)
  • Red Pepper (1/4 of a pepper)
  • Black beans (1/2 cup)
  • Cheddar Cheese (about an ounce)
  • 1 Packet of Wholly Guacamole!

Then topped it with my amazing homemade creamy salsa dressing: 1/4 cup salsa + 1 tbsp greek yogurt! That’s it!

Doesn’t look that tasty but trust me, it is!

Delicious! I considered having it again for dinner but decided I should probably vary my daily nutrient consumption (not that soup and toast was a better option… but oh well).

After lunch, I couldn’t resist a cupcake.  So I had a huge cat mug of tea with a cupcake.

Delightful!

Stress Eating:

So yesterday and today, I’ve been stress eating a bit, okay maybe more than a bit.  Honestly, I’m trying not to worry about it too much.  Everything will be turned in and done by Thursday.  I figure if I overeat a little too much these days, it’s not going to kill me.  I’m not going to let a little bit of overeating stress me out even more.  There are more important things for me to stress about right now.  I’ve realized this month that once my stress levels drop, I eat significantly less.  So the moral of the story is, sometimes stress eating happens and while I do all I can to curb it, sometimes I just have to give in, get my work done and move on to maintain my sanity.  What are your thoughts?

Guess I should get back to paper writing since I won’t be watching Lost 😦

Lastly, here’s a link to a hilarious blog post from NPR’s Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me where they try the KFC Double Down Sandwich. Have a great night!!

Peanut Butter Banana Cupcakes

Hellooo everyone!  Thanks for your great comments on my last post about weight!  I appreciate the understanding!

In other news, I was super please this morning to find that my panini post made the Food Buzz Top 9!

Today felt like a ridiculously unproductive day.  Yesterday I went to the library from 10am until about 5:30 and managed to bust out almost 1400 words of my paper (needs to be 2,500-3,000).  Today after class, I went to the library hoping to bust out the rest of the paper but only ended up writing about 300 more words.  It was just NOT happening!  So instead I just went home, where I proceeded to snack for a good while (probably a consequence of my scant lunch.  I was too lazy to make lunch this morning so I packet a pear, a luna bar, 1/2 cup of edamame, a carrot and some sliced cucumber.  Not substantial enough.  I need a full meal!  Lesson learned, won’t happen again.)

In my unproductiveness, I decided to bake for a friend who is in need of a sweet treat.  I was feeling creative so here’s my creation:

Peanut Butter Banana Cupcakes with Chocolate PB Icing

inspired by Voracious Vegan’s Ultimate Peanut Butter Cup Cake

1 1/2 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup natural peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour (I used half whole wheat)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup + a little more milk (to make this recipe vegan, use soy/hemp/almond/other non-dairy milk)
See Icing recipe below

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine bananas, sugar, PB and vanilla in a large bowl.  Add flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt.  As you combine, gradually pour in the milk until well combined.  Pour into lined cupcake pan and bake for 15-20 minutes (mine required 17 mins in the oven).   Allow cupcakes to cool completely and frost with PB Chocolate Icing.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Sticky Icing

inspired by Pioneer Woman’s Sticky Chocolate Icing

1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
2 ounces of dark chocolate
1 tbsp peanut butter

Heat together in a sauce pan, stirring until all ingredients are well combined.  Spoon onto cupcakes and spread.

These should probably be enjoyed with a large glass of milk or warm cup of coffee.  The sweetness is crazyyy!  Sort of wish they were a little more peanut buttery!  Oh well, next time I’ll add more!

I’m hoping to get more done tonight.  Not sure to what extent it’ll happen though.  Just need to pull through til Thursday!  I can do it!  Wish me luck!  Have a lovely night!

Random Question: What’s your favorite kind of cupcake? I’m a huge fan of carrot cake with buttercream.

Let’s Talk About Weight

A few days ago, Gracie, wrote a post about being “healthyfully correct,” which I thought was really interesting and got me thinking about the “healthy living” blog world.  Then a few days later, Katie wrote a post about her frustration with women complaining about their bodies.

Let me start by saying that I love healthy living blogs.  For the most part, I find them interesting and inspiring.  I’ve read them for years now.

I have one issue: I feel like I can’t talk about weight.

It’s a taboo topic.  But why?

I was looking at the big, popular blogs (you know the ones…) most of them started as weight loss blogs AND most of them started with calorie counting.  However, now they’re maintaining their weight and seem to be against calorie counting.  But what if you need to lose weight?

I was looking around, and I weigh as much now as most of those blogger weighed when they thought they were overweight (I checked we’re about the same height) and needed to (and started to) lose weight.  Really, go look at some weight loss/about pages…

I’m not trying to compare myself to others, and I don’t think I’m fat, but I’m technically overweight (by about 4 lbs… not a big deal in my opinion).  To some extent though, it’s a question of health.  Yes, you can be healthy but overweight if you exercise and eat right… BMI isn’t everything… Muscle weighs more than fat…, but to another extent I wonder if it’s an excuse to stay slightly overweight?

I’m not saying I want to start complaining about my weight or telling you all everything that’s wrong with my body.  That’s not what I’m saying. I actually like myself, and I think that’s particularly unbecoming of someone to fat talk themselves and so I avoid it in real life as well.

I guess this is an issue for me because I’ve been overweight the majority of my life.  I’m taking large… As in, I probably weighed as much in the 6th grade as I do now… I would love to say that my weight doesn’t matter to me now, but it does. In the back of my mind, there’s always the fear that if I don’t watch what I eat I’ll be severely overweight again and that’s pretty scary.

Sometimes I want to express my frustration about weight (since it is my blog after all) but I feel like I can’t because someone will get angry/offended.

Should I even be worried about this?

What’s your take on the situation?

What are some other blog taboo topics?

No Panini Press? No Prob!

Hi Ladies (and gentlemen?)!  Hope your weekend is starting out well! Mine’s been okay.  I finished the book I had to read, now paper writing can commence, but before all that I had a lovely morning.

I watched Ugly Betty (cried a bit… so sad this show is ending) while I had breakfast, cleaned the apartment, did some laundry and went to the gym (45min elliptical + 15 min treadmill + some weights).  Then I came home and before going to the library decided I should probably have lunch.  So this ensued…

Holey Moley!  Sooo good!

Now, I love toasted/pressed sandwiches.  However, I’m poor and unmarried (no registry… not for a long time, if ever) so instead I got a little creative.

I started with a flat out foldy thing (flat bread essentially but any bread would work), spread some delicious hummus on both sides, layered a little under 2 ounces of reduced fat cheese on both sides, then added spinach, sprouts and yellow peppers to create this:

Then I heated a pan and sprayed it with cooking spray and placed another pan on top and weighed it down with a jar of tahini, like such:

Then I had the most amazing meal ever!  Check out the melty cheese!

But seriously what made this extra delicious was this hummus:

Tribe Mediterranean hummus.  It tastes Moroccan!! Sooo good!  (Note: if you have a Harris Teeter look in their deli section for Moroccan Hummus!  Delish!)

I love this hummus with the yellow peppers as well.

Tip: If you don’t want to consume an entire pepper at one time, one way to keep it fresher longer (since they are expensive and you want them to last!) is to wrap the cored pepper in a paper towel then place it in a bag in the fridge.

It’ll keep fresh for up to a week!

Friends, I am a bottomless pit today!  Sadly I came home from the library with no desire to cook (gasp, rarely happens).  This is where I need a sexy man who waits eagerly for my arrival just so he can serve me a gourmet, healthy meal.

Wishful thinking.  Instead I had PB&J

some edamame and cottage cheese.

I’m hoping my hunger monster will go away soon, in the meantime, I’m chugging water and starting this paper!  Wish me luck!

Random Question: What’s your favorite sandwich ingredient?

Splurging at the Grocery Store

It’s the weekend!!!! Woo!  Too bad I have a ton to do this weekend!  Oh well! It’ll all get done!

Today I was in desperate need of going to the grocery store.  Luckily, I was provided with lunch on campus today (delish veggie pizza and salad!) because I literally had no fresh produce, which is a deal breaker for me.

So I went to the grocery store and spent tons of $$.  I’ve realized I buy expensive things.  I go through about 1 large container of greek yogurt per week which costs about $7.99.  About 2 bags of spinach and 1 bag of romaine hearts and then I usually choose a few “exciting splurges.”  For me, exciting splurges are fruits of vegetables that aren’t cheap (usually over $3/lb).

Last week’s exciting splurge was a cantaloupe.  This week’s exciting splurge is a bag of colorful pepper and some mushrooms!

Do you splurge on expensive produce?  Do you consider it a splurge even since it’s healthy?

So delicious!  I had some dinner!

Broccoli and Yellow Pepper Stir Fry

Along with a can of soup since it was a cold day (we had a high of 45degrees! Yesterday the high was 80 degrees! What’s up with the weather??)

I also baked the most disappointing muffins ever tonight.

Bob’s Red Mill… you let me down.  I made these: Ruthie’s 8 Grain Muffins

Omm… why were they salty?  Not expected.  They would probably taste good with chili but I was expecting something sweet. I’m a little disappointed…

Hitting ‘Publish’ Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution just started! Are you watching?