Thursday, January 7, 2010

Squash and Snookie... Snookie and Squash

Hello Tootsie Rolls!

It's almost the end of the week and I am so pleased to say that after tonight's midnight shift... I am off for a week! It has been a pretty long stretch since December 24th, working lots of hours with a max of 24 hours off in between... and quite a few doubles in the mix! With EIGHT overtime shifts in the past 2 weeks... I am feeling quite deserving of a BIG glass of wine tomorrow night!

Gym update: Have put in 15k this week. Treadmill at gym 2x and one brisk walk (WAY too icy to run) outside. Still have this naughty chest infection, so all of the treadmill time was run/walk... got the kilometers in, but in horrible time! I have resolved to finally visit the doctors... this cough and wheezing is just not going away.

Despite all of the family stuff I have at the beginning of the week (fingers crossed pls), I am aiming for 20k for the week... at least 4x 5k. Depending on the outcome of my Da's surgery on Monday, I may or may not be spending much time at my parent's house over the next week. Not too far from my place, and the same distance to the gym... so despite some stress and a little inconvenience- I have no excuse to fall off the rails!

After all, my Mum DOES have a blender... so I have no excuse not to make one of these babies and set the tone for the day...

I've started the past 3 days now with a Green Monster... and am feeling better for it! Honestly, I can't say enough about how great these shakes are! I've given some to people at work (who accepted it skeptically) and most of them liked it! Even my Mum got in on the party tonight and had one with me before work. Now that I have the basic recipe down pat... I'm going to start playing around with some different additives. I'm thinking ginger, basil, garlic, frozen fruit, pumpkin, kale... the ideas are endless! If you haven't visited the Green Monster Movement site yet, be sure to follow the link to check out tonnes of hints for combinations!

Just as I am typing this... a friend blackberried me to ask me if I had slipped something in her drink! She had some only an hour ago and has a burst of energy! I'll ask her to submit her testimonial as proof... jk.

Another morning beverage I've been enjoying at all times of the day is bodum tea...

I was lucky enough to receive this french press for Christmas, and although I don't usually drink coffee (I save up my coffee points for really good espresso), this little device is PERFECT for loose teas. I find it makes a stronger tea, which I prefer, because the leaves and fleurs can float or sink and permeate the hot water on their own accord. They aren't caged in by a mesh tea ball or perforated spoon. The brew above is rose hip. It looks better than it tastes in my opinion. I've recently purchased Jasmine, Green Tea w/ brown rice and Japanese Green (my favourite). At some tea specialty stores, these blends can cost you a pretty penny, but at the Asian market, a large bag will run you from 2-3$. Obviously, there aren't the 'yuppie' teas we might be interested in at most of these markets, but there is a HUGE selection of oriental brews. Steeping your tea in a glass press or pot lets you really enjoy the whole ritual of the tea taking... very Zen!

In other nifty and thrifty news... I have just finished the second half of a spaghetti squash. These little nerds are also really inexpensive, make several servings and can be topped with ANYTHING! Just like nature's perfect little blank canvas!

Last night I had half of her with some baby spinach, antipasto and goat cheese.

Cut in half, seeds scooped out and then roasted downward dog with some olive oil spritz and some vegetable seasoning (shayka- shayka as it's known to Kiki and Puddin') at 400 deg f for 40 mins.
Scrape the guts out with a fork, and instantly, a thatch of spaghetti-like stands will emerge! I just folded in some baby spinach (raw- no need to steam, the heat from the cooked squash does it for you), topped with some antipasto and put a wee glob (official term) of goat cheese on top... and... VOILA!

Isn't she gorgeous? So many colours are always a good sign of something healthy (hence Smarties... ). But like every beautiful girl... after giving so much of herself to everyone else, she feels a little empty inside...
Ah she served us well! Good thing I didn't name her, this blog would be turning into a eulogy. I'm clearly taking this 'relationship with my food' thing too far.
Following in yesterdays footsteps, with half of her... shit- I mean: half of the spaghetti squash left... I decided more of the same would suit me just fine. Maybe just a different topping to change up the game a bit.

Roasted as above, but topped with some sauteed peppers and garlic and a little white wine. On the side were some baked tomatoes stuffed with some 1% cottage cheese flavoured with some Shayka- Shayka. The tri- colore effect was especially prudent as I was lucky enough to be watching Jersey Shore. I have now named this dish "Guidette Squash".

It was so filling... and I still have a quarter of the recently-broken-up-with squash at home. Tomorrow I'll have a WHOLE night at home and to myself, so I'll come up with something brilliantly exciting and creative... I'm sure.

I''ll be back tomorrow... I just watched Food Inc, so I have that to talk about. As well as my big plans to try curling in February, winter tennis, The Bachelor, The Biggest Loser, the idea of weekly/monthly challenges and other random thoughts.

Do you set weekly or monthly challenges for yourself? What have you tried?



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