Monday, July 28, 2008

Congrats to Aaron McCargo, Jr.!

If any of you are as addicted to The Next Food Network Star as I am, then you know to whom I am referring in my post's title. Last night was the finale of TNFNS, and the winner was Aaron McCargo, Jr. Sorry if I just ruined the surprise...oops. I am satisfied with the judges' choice; I would have been a little annoyed if Lisa had won. Sure, she's super stylish (I love all her vintage-inspired dresses!), and her food is impressive, but she doesn't have Aaron's cuddliness. A friendly demeanor outweighs fashion. Did anyone else watch last night?

I had lots of good eats this past weekend. I finally had the time to cook,
without anatomy terms rattling in the back of my mind.

Here's what rolled out my kitchen most recently:


Simple smoothie this time. I love using berries, but those darn seeds detract from my enjoyment of the berry-themed smoothies. I have tried blending twice, as readers have suggested, but the Bullet seems to leave them in tact. If only I had a Vita-Mix... Saturday
Yay for homemade pancakes! As I mentioned in my last post, I had intended to make them earlier in the week, but I was missing too many ingredients. I tried a new recipe from VegWeb that uses applesauce rather than mashed banana. The verdict: the
VegWeb pancakes are much cuter and fluffier than the pancakes from Sweet Eats, but banana beats all. I happen to like a dense the banana pancakes are the perfect vehicle for a dollop of PB:) I didn't feel like making much for lunch, so I just put a few blobs of hummus on Ak-Maks, made a quick spinach salad, and sliced a banana to dip in some Sunbutter.
Dinner was inspired by a recipe from The Imus Ranch Cookbook, the Vegetable Pasta Salad. In the end, I used almost entirely different ingredients, but I think that's what pasta salad are supposed to be--just a conglomeration of what you have on hand. Mine had white beans, whole wheat rotini, cucumber, sliced mozzarella, red bell pepper, carrots, olives, balsamic vinaigrette, and lots of dill. I also had a side of that superstar veggie, broccoli.
Another simple smoothie, and more pesky seeds to go along with it. I used pomegranate granola this time though.
Quick brekkie before church yesterday: frozen banana-soymilk shake with
PB Puffins. I also had a handful of roasted peanuts. (Notice a trend these days? banana PB banana PB banana PB....)
We made a long overdue Whole Foods run yesterday. Here are a few shots of the loot:
I am so excited to finally try Chobani yogurts. I see them all over the food blogs, but I have never tried them. They were about 60 cents cheaper than the other Greek yogurts. Another highlight of the trip was that I picked up some new flavors of Soy Delicious fruit-sweetened nondairy ice cream: Peppermint Carob and Almond Pistachio.

For lunch, I finally got a chance to recreate my Cafe Sunflower meal: Stuffed Acorn Squash. Once again, I didn't have all the ingredients, but I ended up with something just as tasty: white beans, dried cranberries, walnuts, and lots of spices. I also had some whole wheat toast and berries.
We all ordered Chinese takeout for dinner last night--I got my usual steamed veggies with tofu, and I added cashews and my own seasonings (liquid smoke and garlic powder). I also had some rice crackers, a plum, and the obligatory fortune cookie. Oh, and here's another flattering picture of Major. He was really enjoying his chocolate Cool Whip.
Fun shake last night! I used my new Peppermint Carob Soy Delicious with the usual components, plus mint extract. It tasted like a nutritious Thin Mint cookie! (Sorry for the bad pic!)
After an excellent workout this morning (swimming!), I made a big bowl of oats with whipped banana, almond butter, and lots of wheat germ. I noticed that I have been neglecting that little red jar of wheat germ for far too long. Plus, for my nutrition class, we have to track our eating for 3 days, and I have consistently been low on vitamin E--Kretschmer to the rescue!

Another fabulous lunch today: Goddess Garbanzos from ED&BV wrapped in a whole wheat tortilla, side salad, and fresh cherries. I was in a food fugue...until I got cherry juice all over my pants.
To top off this day of tasty eats, I made one of my recent favorites: Cashew Ginger Tofu (do I even have to type it? It's from ED&BV, of course). Whole wheat couscous, steamed broccoli, and salad made this quite possibly the best meal ever.

Off to study a bit before Jon & Kate Plus Eight. Happy Monday!


VeggieGirl said...

Since I was rooting for Aaron throughout the ENTIRE season of "The Next Food Network Star," words cannot properly describe just how elated I was last night (and still am) when I found out that he won - I literally shrieked with glee, haha :0)

You need a BLENDTEC blender, my friend - that thing blends raspberries (and other super-seedy berries) SOOO smoothly, it's divine.

Oooh, the Stuffed Acorn Squash looks excellent; and hey, the Banana/PB combination never gets old, for sure!! Love it (well, I love Banana/Hazelnut-Butter, but it's the same concept, haha).

CAROB SHAKE!! **swoons**

Good luck studying!!

Anonymous said...

I loved that show too! I wantd Adam to win though...I think that Aaron is like many of the other people on Food Network. I wanted something new and Adam was funny. Lisa annoyed me =/

Yum! Pancakes are my favorite!

Danielle said...

Haha, if I were home I promise that I'd be watching... and probably excited about Aaron's win as well :).

I know I've said this before but I swear I wish I could follow you around for a day... just so I could eat all the incredible-looking things you enjoy daily! Not to mention, that you present even the simplest things so beautifully. Such an inspiration :)

Good luck studying!

Aimee said...

Your Stuffed Acorn Squash looks so professional!!

Olga said...

Your smoothies makes me want to print out a picture of one, run out of my office, run to the local food health store and demand they make me one just like that.

I'm gonna try to find some of that Hemp Shake.

Thanks for reading my blog! I'm adding you to my blogroll to keep updated =]

P.S. Barbara's PB Puffers= deliciousness

Ruby Red Vegan said...

Jon & Kate Plus 8 is such a cute show! Lately it's almost always on while I'm at the gym. Last night was the first time I saw a clip of Kate's belly when she was pregnant with 6 -- oh my gosh, it was huge!!

I love the Carob Peppermint fruit sweetened Soy Delicious. I don't understand why it's just so good. I keep giving all different kinds of Purely Decadent a chance, and they aren't nearly as delicious as the fruit Soy Delicious line. I love plain chocolate Tofutti also!

You are making me crave nut butter like crazy! I just ran out of PB and the tahini in my fridge is just not cutting it. The Cashew Ginger Tofu and the PB Puffins look absolutely marvelous...As does your squash recreation!

Anonymous said...

I stocked up on the fruit sweetened soy delcious when I found it too! The pistachio almond one is very good and so is the mocha... I recently bought a mango rasberyy as well, I add them to my shakes or make a nice sundae out of them at night, I have to try the "thin mint" shake I would def love that!

Tara said...

I just wanted to tell you I LOVE your blog and read it every day! You have inspired me to start a daily diary of my vegan eatings. I just started two days ago. Please check it out if you get a chance.

Thanks for inspiring me!

Green Eyes, Green Heart said...

TOTALLY obsessed with TNFNS! I'm so glad Aaron won, as well! Can't wait for "Big Daddy's Kitchen"!
(Also, if you read my blog, you'll find that I have quite the crush on Bobby Flay, but that's beside the point...) ;)

~Erin @ "Vegan & the City"

ChickPea said...

VeggieGirl: Yes, I was pretty psyched that Aaron won too--he's such a sweet guy.
Hmm Blendtec is going on the Xmas list right NOW.
My hazelnut butter arrived today, so I will try it with banana ASAP.
Shelby: Yeah, part of me wanted Adam to win too. He was pretty entertaining, and more relatable. I'm sure Aaron will still do a good job though!
Danielle: I bet your globetrotting is a whole lot more entertaining than any TV show! You can follow me around any day, as long I get to do the same with you:)
Aimee: Thanks! It was really easy though--I am so NOT a pro.
Olga: I make smoothies and shakes 7 days a week--I'm that addicted. PB Puffins are pretty awesome.
Ruby: I know her stomach was ginormous! Have you seen the episode where she gets a tummy tuck?
That brand is definitely my favorite! I like it more than regular ice cream, easily. I'll have to give Tofutti a try though.
I have a mild nut butter addiction these days. I probably have 10 jars right now...
SportsNutritionLiving: Heck yes that pistachio almond is good! I tried it last night, and I couldn't get enough.
Tara: I'm so glad to hear that you like the blog. I checked yours out, and it looks great!
Green Eyes, Green Heart: Haha, I just explored your blog a bit, and you're right about Bobby--he does have a certain "Irish charm."