Friday, May 2, 2008

Free at last, free at last!

That's right! I finished the semester at 8:00 this evening. I am so ready to get back home and get cooking! Granted, I will be taking classes this summer, but they will be nutrition-related, so I will likely find them more fun than tedious! In case you're curious, I will be taking Introduction to Nutrition and Human Anatomy. Classes don't start until June 2, so my dad has been on my case about finding something to do in the meantime. So far I have come up with: 1) writing some product reviews/articles (for pay!) or 2) getting a job at Whole Foods. Do you have any other suggestions for exciting summer jobs/activities?

In addition to finally bringing the semester to a close, I have another reason to smile today: Ve*ganChick and Jennifer both tapped me for the Excellent Blogger Award. Thank you both for even considering me for such a title. Even though I have been blogging for less than 2 months (anniversary is on the 9th!), I feel like I have gained such a great support network of fellow foodies. I'm glad to know that someone reads my posts besides me!

In keeping with tradition, I will now tag 5 other excellent bloggers:

Romina from Vegan Eating for One. Her dishes never fail to get my tummy growling, and she is so knowledgeable about vegan nutrition!

Jill from Jumping Jill. I swear we were separated at birth--we share a lot of the same interests, and we both have an especial affinity for Cheerios.

Kristin from Kristin's Nibbles. I want to steal her food right off her plate! She and I both must deal with the constraints of dorm room cooking.

VeggieGirl from Veggie Girl Vegan. She never ceases to amaze me in her baking skills and her throughtful posts. VeggieGirl inspired to me to start my own blog!

Erika from Run-Roam-Recycle. Her dedication to running motivates me, plus she still finds time to make some tasty treats!

As for the food from the last few days, I managed to sneak a few pics here and there.

Remember how I mentioned that I bought some Dr. Weil bars at Whole Foods this week? Well, I finally got around to trying one--the Goji Moji variety. Once again, I think it tasted like the inside of a Fig Newton, which is not a bad thing. I was expecting more of a berry flavor, however. Goji chunks were visible, just not terribly prominent in the bar's overall taste.

For breakfast yesterday, I tried something new again. Despite the fact that so many bloggers and so many recipes include nut butters in their smoothies, I had never tried it. As I have said before, I just really enjoy chewing nuts rather than slurping them. Nonetheless, I gave it a try in a banana-PB shake. It was so good! I was actually a bit forlorn when I reached the bottom of the glass; I didn't want the creaminess to end! In an effort to clear out my pantry, I also had some Corn Bran cereal on the side.

Today's breakfast was pretty standard: Corn Bran cereal (again) with almond milk and sliced banana, plus some almonds on the side. This was a tasty breakfast--I had forgotten how tasty Corn Bran when eaten with almond milk (I usually eat it dry, as a snack-type cereal).

As a snack I had another Primal Strip Vegan Jerky in the hickory smoked variety. I swear, it tastes just like barbecue! More proof that it's all in the sauce-no meat required!
My lunch this afternoon was inspired by a reader comment. A few days ago I had mentioned that I need to find a new way to use wheat germ, besides sprinkling it atop my soy yogurt/fruit. Someone mentioned that I should use it as a breading for tofu--so I did! I made a rather thick peanut sauce for dipping, and a tasty lunch was born! I loved the texture contrast between the tofu and the crispy wheat germ. Plus, anything tastes good dipped in peanut sauce! Cantaloupe and a big salad rounded out the meal.

Well, I am now going to surf Amazon to reward myself for finishing exams. I am not sure if I should order a new cookbook, a kitchen gadget, a novelty food, or something else. I don't have a food processor, so I was considering one of those, but I am still undecided. Recommendations are welcome, as always! Enjoy your Friday!


VeggieGirl said...

Congratulations on being done with the school year!! Whoo hoo!!

I recommend getting a job at Whole Foods :0)

So glad that you earned that blogging award - I LOVE your blog, so of course I'm happy that you ended up starting one :0)

As for what to purchase on Amazon: either a BlendTec blender or a KitchenAid food processor.

Jennifer said...


Wahooooo! School's out!

(I would go with a food processor myself, mine has become a very dear friend of mine, I adore the thing.)

romina said...

Hooray!! I love that feeling of freedome. =) Congrats!
And congratulations on the award, and thank you so much for passing it on to me. It means so much to know that my little blog can make a difference. =)

Jill said...

Congrats on school AND the award, you deserve it!! And thanks so much for passing it on!

I actually am not a huge fan of my food processor, but it's just so bulkier. Besides, I'm madly in love with my magic bullet.

Cassie said...

Yea for being done for school! - And congrats on the award! GO YOU!

Thanks for the description on that Goji bar. I was so curious about them - your description really helped!

Kristin said...

Aww, Chickpea thank you so much for the honor!
I love your blog as well, you are doing an amazing job of keeping a healthy, balanced, delicious looking diet with the in-room constraints! I always look forward to seeing your dorm room creations! Congratulations on the nomination, keep up the good work, and I'll try and keep you interested with my small-space vegetarian inventions=)

Anonymous said...

YAY for school being over and congrats on your final final, lol.

I also recommend getting a job at Whole Foods.. how cool would that be, huh?

I saw that you studied abnormal psychology this semester. I will be taking that class in the Fall.. how did you find it to be?

Congrats on your Excellence award; I must say, I do enjoy your blog very much and I totally agree with the award. Good job and keep it up!

As for recommendations on what to purchase.. it depends on your budget and what you want most. If budget is not a problem, I recommend getting a food processor. If you are within a budget, I say purchase a hand blender.
Hope that helps and let us know what you decide to get and what you'll be doing for the summer!

ChocolateCoveredVegan said...

You are definitely deserving of an excellence award. And Congrats on being done with the semester! And the smoothie sounds great right about now.

Anonymous said...

Hey Caroline,

What is your email? Your Duke email is not working for me (it keeps sending the email back to me).



ChickPea said...

VeggieGirl: Thanks for your kind words. When do you finish school?
As for the Amazon order, I think I will have to save the BlendTec for my Christmas list--it looks so awesome though!
Jennifer: Sounds like the food processor is the way to go!
Romina: You totally deserve the award!
Jill: That's what is keeping me from ordering a food processor--would it do anything my Bullet doesn't do? Seems unlikely...
Cassie: I'm glad my description was helpful!
Kristin: I can't wait to see your wonderful Italian eats this summer. Good luck with finals!
Vegan Nurse: Welcome to the blog! Abnormal psychology was a great class. I had a pretty dull professor, but the material was interesting enough to keep me from getting bored. It's amazing how much of the course was easily applicable to everyday situations.
I actually recently bought a hand blender--great little gadget! My other email is
CCV: Thanks! Good luck finishing your semester!

Anonymous said...

Smoothies with peanut butter are yummy. My favorite is one banana, cup of soy milk, tablespoon of peanut butter, and some frozen blueberries.. :)

ChickPea said...

Undreamed Shores: Hmm I have never tried that combo with the blueberries, but I have seen Cristin from Eat Like Me do it so many times, it must be pretty darn tasty. BTW, I just discovered your blog, and it's great!