Wednesday, December 31, 2008

lemon tahini-cashew sauce

To me, tahini sauce is just a wee bit too bitter.  But cashews round it out nicely.  I'll probably tweak the amounts more in the future but this turned out well.

1/4 cup raw unhulled sesame seeds
1/2 cup raw cashews
2 Tbsp lemon juice (fresh squeezed)
1/2 cup water (I think)
1 tsp veggizest or other no salt seasoning (optional)
1 small clove garlic
1 date, pitted

Rinse the sesame seeds, then put eveything in the blender.  Blend for a long time so it gets nice and creamy and warm and steamy.   This makes a pretty thick sauce.  I think I might add more water next time or cut back on the seeds and nuts, just so it's a lighter and less fattening meal.  If you split the sauce into two servings, that's at least 2 oz of nuts/seeds each which is probably too much.   I'll work on those relative portions next time I make it.   Maybe I'll try making a lighter sauce for four servings (two meals at my house).    I'll also try it without the date to see if it's still good.

New Year's resolutions

I know what I need to do to eat healthy, and I usually succeed pretty well.   Here are some mental exercises I plan to do for both health and other reasons:

1)  Practice "mindfulness," that is, observing my thoughts without judging.  I want to become of aware of my automatic negative thoughts about myself and change them to positive messages.  I want to practice compassion and loving kindness to myself, especially when I fall down.  At first I'll just be pretending, but if I do it enough, it will become real.  The same goes with having a positive attitude--you just practice it enough, it becomes your way of thinking.   I'm reading this book, "Wherever you go, there you are" by Jon Kabat-Zin, about meditation.  My motivation is for other reasons than food, but I think it applies here too.  

2)  Try not to get obsessed about food.  It doesn't help that I have this blog and participate in the Fuhrman forums.  Beyond that, I need to live my life to the fullest and think about food only when necessary for planning and preparing and enjoying.

3)  Practice scenarios ahead of time.  Practice what I will say when someone kindly offers me a vegan cupcake that they made from scratch just for me!   Pretend I have a lot of self-esteem when I do this since in real life I don't.  The answer is different when you have a lot of self-esteem.  But that is the right answer.  So you practice that one.  For example:  "Thank you so much but I am avoiding baked goods for health reasons.  I'm really sorry you went to all that trouble for me."    Remind myself in various situations why I want to not partake.  For example, for me, processed flour and sugar feels yucky for a few days, not just a few hours.  So that is the reason to say no to the muffins and cookies and cupcakes when the temptation is there.  Same goes for salt.  It causes an unpleasant physical reaction that lasts for a day or so--too long to be worth it!   With oil, I don't have any physical reactions that I notice.  However, I love the fact that I have more aerobic capacity than people 20 years younger than me at the gym--mainly because I'm usually the weakest one when it comes to the weight-bearing exercise, so it's so fun to surprise them when we do stuff like climbing stairs.  So remembering that is enough motivation to avoid the oil.  Plus nuts and avocado taste sooooo much better than oil!

And the physical things are easy:

4)  Do bright light therapy every day--20 minutes under a bright light or in sunshine every morning.  I don't generally do this because I ride my bike every day, but on cloudy days I really should.  Take my DHA, gentle care vitamins, and vitamin D.

5)  Follow Fuhrman's program.  It's very simple:  lots of leafy green vegetables, lots of other vegetables, fruit, beans, nuts and seeds (1-3 oz per day).   And avoid oils, salt, processed grains and sugar.

6) exercise, which I'm addicted to, so no problem there.  check out my biking blog...

dec. 31 food

Breakfast:  banana and 1 oz walnuts, an old favorite.

Lunch:  more fun with the spirooli!   I wanted to give housemate the tomato sauce from last night's dish but she doesn't like zucchini.  So she had the brilliant idea to try a potato.  She thought I would bake it, but I spiralized it and steamed it and it looked just like spaghetti.  It was great with the tomato sauce!  Then for me I made another salad like last night.  I love this salad and it is super easy!  I also had 1 oz brazil nuts (not needed).  oh, and 2 small clementines for dessert.

snack:   a pre new year's splurge.  mixed about 1 oz of pecans in maple syrup, microwaved for 45 seconds (I have a weak microwave).  This is soooooo good.  Of course, maple syrup is not good for you.  so I was bad.   could be worse though, for a splurge, right?

Dinner:  vegetable medley (steam carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, corn) with lemon tahini-cashew sauce.  This was sooo good, like comfort food.  Reminds me of chicken pot pie.    Dessert (new year's splurge):  2 dates with stuffed with walnuts, microwaved for 10 seconds to warm them up (times vary).  This is really good and rich and is great at giving you a sugar high and setting up food cravings.   I also had a bowl of applesauce.  I'm like a kid now, I don't want alcohol, just treats for New Year's.   

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

another spaghetti recipe

I edited this on Mar. 8, 2009.  I changed the recipe and I like it more.

2 16-oz cans tomatoes (we are lucky to can tomatoes from our garden)
1 leek or smallish onion (or 1/2 large)
1 smallish onion (or 1/2 large)
about 3 Tbsp pesto (this is from our garden too, made from basil, garlic, and walnuts---frozen) OR
some chopped fresh basil (or dried) and chopped garlic cloves (2-4, to taste) and some pine nuts.
1 large carrot or 2 medium
1 medium beet
some dried porchini mushrooms (~1/4 cup) 
8 oz fresh mushrroms (e.g., cremini)
1 green bell pepper, chopped

Boil some water (1/2 cup?) in a small pot, turn off the stove, soak the porchini mushrooms for about 30 minutes.  Cook the sauce in two different pans because one will be blended in the blender.  So for the blended pan, cook the carrots, beets, and leek in some of the juice from the tomato cans.  You can cut up these vegetables in big pieces because they will be blended.  Take the pits out of the olives and add them.  In the other pan, chop up the rest of the onion and start cooking it in some of the tomato juice (from the cans).   If you don't have the pesto, chop the garlic and add it.  Let that cook, while cutting up the mushrooms (both the soaked and fresh) and green pepper.  Add the tomatoes, mushrooms and green pepper.  Add the pesto or basil and let that cook up.

While this is cooking, you can cook up your spaghetti or substitute.  I made whole wheat spaghetti for housemate (boil in water until tender) and made steamed brussels sprouts for me (I chop the ends and cut in half each one).  It was great!  I asked for advice on the Fuhrman forums and people said it is also good on broccoli and cauliflower.  I'll try that tomorrow.   You can also use a raw zucchini and spiralize it.  Or spiralize a potato and steam that for a few minutes---it's good.   Brussels sprouts is my favorite.

Once the pot of carrots, leeks and beets are done, blend them up in the blender.   Add to the other pan.  This makes a thick rich creamy sauce.  The carrots and beets add just a touch of sweetness.  I got the idea for beets from the forums.  I hope housemate doesn't read this because she doesn't like beats.  The olives blended up in the sauce are like, olive oil!  Only healthy!   However, it really is optional.  The walnuts in the pesto add a hearty flavor or if you don't have that I recommend the pine nuts (below).  The sauce is more brownish than usual spaghetti sauce but it's not gross.  We're used to eating brown cooked food from our meat-eating days.  

Since the pesto has walnuts in it I didn't add pine nuts, but if you don't have pesto, you can make a topping from pine nuts.  Toast them in a pan on the stove for a few minutes until light brown.  Then crush them in a mortar and pestle or some device---coffee grinder?   You can use these as a topping like parmesan cheese.  It's very good.

really easy arugula (or lettuce or green) salad

arugula or green for a large serving
1 apple
1 orange (optional)
1 Tbsp sunflower seeds, ground in a coffee grinder (or mortar and pestle)
1 Tbsp Fuhrman D'angou pear vinegar (or some other mild vinegar)
chopped red bell pepper (optional)
1/2 cup sweet peas or sweet peas and corn (optional)

Cut up the greens so you can fit more in, put them on a plate.  Peel the apple, cut smallish pieces on top of the salad.  Peel the orange and and add the pieces (can break them up into smaller pieces and let the juice out).  Add the sunflower seeds and vinegar.   Top with the red bell pepper.  If you add the peas and corn, you can thaw them in the microwave for 30-60 secons.   I really like this salad and it's super quick and easy.  I heard that acidic food like vinegar mixes well with bitter greens like arugula.  Well, now I see what they mean.  I thought the flavor mixture was really good, along with the apples.  Oh, the reason I added the sunflower seeds is to thicken the vinegar so it sticks to the salad.  Other seeds or nuts would probably work too.  The apple and vinegar gives a nice sweet and tart flavor, yum.  It's good with or without the orange.  If you have a juicy orange, it adds liquid which is good.  But if you are traveling and can't grind the sunflower seeds, then you don't need the extra liquid.

failed experiment--peanut sesame bar

I wanted to re-create a "bumblebee bar" that my local co-op makes.  I'd eat theirs but they use too much salt, roasted cashews (raw is healthier and tastes sweeter), and honey (I'd rather use dates).  They also include sesame seeds, sunflower seeds and coconut.   I had no idea what relatively quantities they used so I was just guessing.  So I started with freshly ground peanut butter (the co-op has a machine where you make it on the spot).  That, by the way, looked so good I ate some with a banana--that was better than anything that followed.  Okay, I heated up everything in the microwave so it would blend easier.  Then I put about 1 cup peanut butter and almond butter (about 1/2 cup each) in the blender, added 4 dates, blended, added about 1/3 cup sesame seeds and a few Tbsps sunflower seeds and coconut, added about 1/4 cup cashews at the end, didn't want to chop those too finely.  okay, at this point, it tasted pretty good and reminded me of Fuhrman's date nut pop'ems.  Then I thought, the peanut butter and banana tasted so good, maybe I should add a banana.  I did that, spread it into a pan, tasted it, and went, bla.  For one thing, it reminded me of that fudge I made that made me sick.  I think maybe I didn't like the coconut.  Anyway, I just didn't like it.  Plus it was too rich.  I am not good at making sweet things and I don't really like them, partly because I am not disciplined about eating small quantities, and they are too rich.  So next time, I'll just have peanut butter and a banana.  That was really good.  Or cashew dip and banana.  Lesson learned: forget the rich desserts.

dec. 30 food

Breakfast:  went out for breakfast to meet a friend.   I had a mediocre bowl of quick-cooking oatmeal with a half a banana sliced into it and some brown sugar.  At least I think it had no salt.   I have no desire to eat at restaurants anymore.  The things they are good at, cooking food in lots of oil and salt and processed flour and sugar, are things I don't want to eat.  The things I want to eat are usually slim pickings at a restaurant and mediocre and expensive to boot (for example, $8 for a plate with a few salad leaves on it).  My companion didn't eat much of his oatmeal.  I should have invited him home for smoothies instead.   Next time! 

Lunch:  I think I'm in a bit of a splurge mode since it's the end of the year and I'm planning to buckle down like everyone else and improve my eating habits.  So I wanted to make a version of this bar I get at my co-op, called, I forget, a bumblebee bar?  I think I'll make it a separate post since I want to keep track of failed recipes so I don't want to repeat them.  So I'll just say I ate a lot of peanut butter and a banana and a few other nuts and seeds for lunch.

Dinner:  arugula salad and "spaghetti".  yummy yummy.   Oh, and I ate too much of both.  okay, I'll get back to normal tomorrow.  I'm tired of over-eating.

Monday, December 29, 2008

banana-berry-cashew sauce over spinach

I was in the mood for inventing a new dessert today with my three favorite ingredients, banana, cashews, and berries. So first I blended up a banana, 1/4 cup cashews, and 1/2 bag frozen cherries. It made a cream sauce. I guess it was more of a dressing. I started eating it but decided it needed something. So I chopped up some spinach. Then I poured the sauce over the spinach. It was really good, satisfied my splurge desire, and I'm not even sure it counts as a splurge. I still want to experiment more with the "dessert" part. If I'd used a frozen banana, I could have called it ice cream and eaten it without the spinach. Or I could have blended up just the cherries and cashews and poured that over banana pieces. But I actually really liked what I did and it served as my meal. I'll try it with other berries, and play around some more with variations. That will be a fun experiment!

dec. 29 food

Breakfast:  banana + 1 oz walnuts, apple orange.  was out most of the morning so these were my quick bites.

Lunch:  same as last night's dinner:  garbanzo guacamole and lightly steamed veggies to dip with:  carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, sweet potato, beets.  yummy.  Housemate didn't eat enough so I over-ate the veggies as usual.  I might go really simple with the guac. next time:  just chickpeas and avocado, and maybe a little tomato.  I'll start with that and see what I want to add.

Dinner:  banana-cherry-cashew sauce over chopped spinach.  This started out as a desire to invent a new dessert but turned into a nice little meal.   Also ate a small orange and a clementine.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

dec. 28 food

Breakfast:  banana+blueberry+walnuts over about 1 oz chopped spinach.  I love this breakfast.  hmmm, I think I like it even more than the cabbage-apple breakfast.

Lunch:  had a late lunch, was really hungry, snacked on a clementine, made garbanzo guacamole, a Fuhrman recipe, though I only followed it loosely.  I used a lot of cooked chickpeas, 2 avocados, a bunch of green onions, 2 garlic cloves, lemon juice, and a drained can of tomatoes.  I think there were too many tomatoes.  It might have been better before I added them or I should have added less.  I didn't add any spices because I thought it tasted great as it was.  I love chickpeas and avocado so I don't think you need much else than that.  Then I lightly steamed a bunch of veggies cut into sticks--carrots, sweet potato, broccoli, cauliflower.  Then we pigged out.  I wasn't hungry for dinner.  

Dinner:  a clementine and some lettuce.  just wanted a snack.  oops, then I had some cashews and pecans, even though I wasn't hungry, was just pigging out.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

dec 27 food

Breakfast:  apple-cabbage-beet+cinnamon+curry.   This is a variation on the apple-cabbage breakfast but has no raisins or currnats and replaces the onion with the beet--mainly because I have beets and no onion.   I kinda like this one better but I think most people would like the posted recipe better.   Also had 5 brazil nuts and 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds, an orange, and 1/2 cup pomegranate juice to take my vitamins with.  So that ought to last me!   good thing because lunch won't be until 2 pm at least.

Lunch:  mango-spinach smoothie while oot and aboot (Canadian for "out and about").  

Snacks:  oops.  I notice when I start eating I can't stop.  When I got home at 4 pm,  I had carrots, celery, some pumpkin seeds, a clementine.  oh well, at least it was healthy stuff.  

Dinner:  salad with lettuce, red bell pepper, edamame and sweet potato orange dressing.  Really good.  Dessert: rest of yesterday's pineapple-banana sorbet.  I liked it even better today.

Update on the scone reaction:  my teeth are less sensitive today and my face skin looks better.  Other people on the Fuhrman forums have said they have similar reactions when eating processed flour and sugar after being off it.  I'm still curious what is going on, but don't want to experiment anymore with it.

Friday, December 26, 2008

dec 26 food

Breakfast:  0.5 oz brazil nuts.  0.4 cup pomegranate juice to take my vitamins with.  apple-cabbage breakfast.  I love this for breakfast!  I used beets instead of onions because I have lots of beets and no onions.  I think the onions are better, but beets are fine and I have lots.  actually, the beets are kind of sweet so maybe I should do without the currants next time I use beets.  I'll see if that's better.   Anyway, I still feel a bit crappy from yesterday's scones.

Lunch:  leftover lentil soup over steamed kale.  it was a rather large helping, probably more than I needed.  clementine and 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds for dessert.

Dinner:   2 pieces of celery and about 1 oz nuts snacking while making a big salad with orange-sweet potato dressing (sorry, a fuhrman recipe).  For dessert I made a banana-pineapple sorbet.  I didn't need the dessert, was plenty full from dinner, but that pineapple was staring me in the face.  well, that's no excuse.  anyway, I kind of liked it.  It was just pineapple and frozen bananas blended up in the blender.  not too sweet which I liked.  I ate half of it, saved the rest for tomorrow.    

more on the scones

okay, so I had 2 scones yesterday, well 4 little ones, okay, so 4 scones.  And I felt pretty crappy afterwards.  I hope my very nice friend who gave me the scones never reads this blog!  Geez, this is the (social) problem with eating healthy.  I had a lot of symptoms from this and I'm very curious now what the biochemical reaction of my body was.  I looked up gluten intolerance on the web and that seems to me to be a longer-term reaction, an inflammation of your intestines that worsens over time and leads to poor absorption and nutrient deficiency and autoimmune problems (allergies, arthritis, etc)---that's a longer-term effect.  I had an immediate unpleasant reaction that has lasted at least 12 hours, though is gradually getting better.  The reaction was not really worse than in the past, but it's more noticeable now since I usually feel much better--I always felt this way when I used to eat this way.  Last night, I sort of felt like I had ADHD.  Here are some other things I felt, and I have to keep in mind that it's hard to be objective on these things as your mind can exagerate things.    okay, the headache and fuzzy brain were real, as well as being both tired and nervous.  My teeth were sensitive while brushing last night and this morning.  This hasn't happened in a while but it could just be coincidence.  I had more runny nose on my bike this morning than usual (this could be imagined).  I was a little nauseas at the gym (not imagined).  I recall this being a normal feeling in the past too.  My face looks a little splotchy today (that could be imagined, and was also normal in the past though).  I recall when I was a kid on the rare occasions that we got pancakes with syrup, I felt pretty crappy afterwards.  We hardly ever got desserts or sweets.  But I'm sure I ate plenty of refined white flour.  We ate white bread, though usually only for lunch on sandwiches.

So as I said before, I'm wondering what the biochemical reaction was.  I think it was to the processed flour and sugar.  There was also oil in the scones I assume, which I also haven't had in a while.   Processed white flour is equivalent to sugar, I've read.  If this was a sugar reaction, why is it so much stronger than to fruit or even dates which are very sweet?   This is the mystery I would like to understand.  I'll ask Dr. Fuhrman if I can't figure it out myself.    

I guess I can consider this an experiment though I would like to limit these experiments as time goes on because they aren't very pleasant.  It seems I need to avoid sugar, oils, alcohol, caffeine, and refined flour now?  well, of course, that is exactly what Dr. Fuhrman says.  But I guess my body is saying it too.  

I still have to work on my story.  What do I tell people when I refuse their offerings of food?   I've got two business trips coming up so it will be interesting to see.  One is to Portugal.  I could cop out and say it's for medical reasons, that I'm avoiding salt because of a heart condition, which is in fact true but it's also a cop out.  I should be more bold and say that this is how I choose to eat for health reasons.  But I'm not very bold...however, it might be worth play-acting at home pretending that I am bold.  good idea..

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Dec. 25 food

Breakfast:  a mashed sweet potato (baked first, then peeled skin) with pumpkin pie spice, and some fresh pineapple.  It was good, sort of a Christmas treat.

Lunch:   leftover lentil soup over brocolli and zucchini.  very yummy.  2 clementines.  0.5 oz brazil nuts.

Dinner:  oops.  Vegan baker neighbor brought over scones.  They are really good.  I ate four small ones which is probably equivalent to two normal size ones.  I wasn't hungry for dinner after this so just ate some arugula and a clementine a few hours later.   Okay, let's take this as a learning opportunity:  how do I feel after eating these scones?  I feel noticeably worse than normal.  First I got a sugar high (that part felt fine) and now I am on a sugar low and my brain is a bit fuzzy and my head hurts a bit.  and there is something else, I feel enervated (drained of energy) and a little nervous at the same time--it's a weird feeling.  This must be from the sugar?  or the flour?  I don't feel bad but I don't feel good.  This is how I used to always feel, and then I'd have some more sugar or caffeine to get me over the sugar low.  So I thought it was normal to feel bla whenever I don't have caffeine or alcohol or an immediate high from sugar.  You get on this yo-yo.  But when I eat the way Fuhrman tells me to eat, I don't feel anything.  I essentially feel good but you get used to that feeling so it feels like nothing, but you don't ever feel bad.  That's the key.   The other problem is now I'm thirsty from the salt.  I am beginning to hate salt.   I don't feel bad about splurging on Christmas day.  But I don't like that it gives you a hangover that lasts a lot longer than the enjoyment of eating it.  That's the part that will probably eventually stop me from eating this stuff.  My tolerance decreases more and more over time as I adopt a healthier eating style.

Dec. 24 food

Breakfast:  after a difficult bike ride in the snow and a 2-hour yoga class, I enjoyed a banana and 1 oz walnuts before my even more difficult bike ride home.  Then I had an apple.  It was close to lunch so I stopped.  

Lunch:  arugula and the rest of yesterday's tomato dressing.  outstanding!  Housemate complained that her smoothie was greenish (I am adding spinach now to cure her eye problem), so I added half a bag of blueberries.  I took the other half and made my OMG blueberry drink.  yummy!   

In mid-afternoon I tried to make a Christmas treat based on some recipes someone posted on the Fuhrman forums.  It was an avocado-banana-date pudding.  It was supposed to be brown after adding cocoa but I added carob which didn't turn it brown so it was an ugly green.  It tasted okay but I just didn't think it was worth it.  So I gave some to housemate and threw out the rest.  I know, wasteful, but I hardly waste food anymore at all.  I eat all the produce and I compost the refuse.  I used to throw out a lot of produce that went bad.  Now I eat it all.  Anyway, I'm beginning to think I don't like desserts.  The healthy ones are not that great tasting, and the unhealthy ones make me feel bla, along with being unhealthy.  Plus I don't have the discipline to eat them in moderation when I make them.  So I think I'm better off without them.  I really like fruit, so why not just stick with that.

Dinner:  I made carrot and red lentil soup from the Fuhrman recipe site, because it is very easy.  It has 3 ingredients:  juice from a ton of carrots, red lentils, and onions.  It is a bit sweet on its own, but it's great over greens or vegetables.  We had it over steamed kale.  a great meal.  had an orange for dessert.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

true hunger

Howard at Lifestyle Power has a great post on hunger and overeating.  I'm realizing I don't have the optimum eating schedule.  Since I exercise in the morning, often followed by errands, I don't eat breakfast until 10-10:30 am usually.  Then I eat lunch with housemate before she heads off to work at about 1 pm.  So I'm not really hungry at lunch.  I think that sets up an unhealthy pattern where you eat when you aren't hungry and are more likely to overeat since you aren't in touch with hunger.  I'm not sure what to do about this--eat before exercise?  I'd have to get up even earlier, plus I'm not keen on doing strenuous exercise on a full stomach.  Postpone lunch?   That doesn't work schedule-wise.  Make a smaller breakfast?  That may have to be the solution, even though I haven't eaten since dinner the night before!  Or make a smaller lunch?   That doesn't solve the problem of eating when not hungry.  So it seems I should make a smaller breakfast.  Anyone have another suggestion?

Dec 23 food

Breakfast:  0.5 oz brazil nuts (at the gym, before my cold bike ride home).  1/2 cup smoothie (leftover from housemate's).  then curried apple+cabbage+onion+raisins.  This is a great breakfast!  Warm and delicious.  

Lunch:  the rest of yesterday's soup over steamed broccoli and cauliflower.

Snack:  banana and walnuts.  I'm not supposed to snack under the Fuhrman plan but this has been a highly physically active day and I was tired, and I confess not real hungry, but tired, and the banana and walnut really felt good and perked me up a bit, as did sitting on the couch for an hour.

Dinner:  salad with a tomato dressing.  This was really good.  This is an example of a great meal you can make when you are running out of food and start inventing things.  The salad consisted of lettuce (and mine had spinach and arugula too) chopped so you fit more on a plate; and we wanted more than lettuce, but didn't have the usual salad fixings, so I took some sweet potato, a carrot, an apple, part of a yellow zucchini, and I ran them through the grater blade of the food processor to make them like cole slaw.  Put that on top of the lettuce.  Then the salad dressing is from a Fuhrman recipe, called Savory tomato dressing.  I didn't follow it exactly, and I wish I could post it as a recipe but I shouldn't.  However, I can describe it a bit.  I blended up almonds, a can of our garden tomatoes with about half the water drained out, in the blender.  Then added Dr. Fuhrman's black fig vinegar, vegizest, and some onion and garlic powder.  Next time I'll use a little real onion and garlic.   It was a great flavor and fit in well with the salad fixings.  I was worried the tomato and onion and garlic wouldn't blend well with the apple, but it was all great.    Dessert was an orange.  Then we went grocery shopping and I was ate some cashews as I was putting them away.   I wasn't hungry, it was just the usual lack of discipline.  

Monday, December 22, 2008

dec 22 food

Breakfast:  banana before yoga class.  apple after yoga.  Usually I wait until I get home to eat breakfast but yoga is later than my usual exercise class and I didn't eat a whole lot yesterday, and I biked in frigid temperatures so wanted to make sure I had energy.  I had a clementine when I got home, and about 1/2 oz pistachio nuts.  then it was kind of close to lunchtime.

Lunch:  Dr. Fuhrman's anti-cancer soup (from freezer) over arugula.  Housemate and I decided we would have preferred to separate the salad and soup today.  orange and a few cherries for dessert.

Dinner:  1 carrot, 1 rib celery, 0.5 oz brazil nuts while trying to stave off hunger because I was busy working and not ready to make dinner at the usual time.  then beets and edamame over lettuce.  I think I'm tiring of eating stuff over chopped lettuce.  I go through phases.   oh, added 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds and 1 Tbsp currants.  it was good.  orange and a few cherries for dessert.   now, did I overeat?   I don't feel too full.  I think I did okay.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

dec. 19-21 food, oops

The last three days forms a little chapter as you'll see.  On Thursday night, I made some "healthy" fudge from Dr. Fuhrman's recipe site, containing mostly almonds and dates and coconut and I used carob instead of cocoa since I can't handle the caffeine in chocolate.  It really wasn't that great, yet I still ate too much on Friday morning--at least half the pan.  Well, I learned once before that if I eat too many nuts, I get sick.  Yet I did it again.  So later on that day, since I figured I was on a splurge, binge I should say, I also ate 2 vegan chocolate chip cookies (I went to the co-op to get some rice to make housemate happy and I got the cookies then), and a bowl of red beans and rice.  Besides the fudge I actually didn't eat that much, but of course, the fudge.  I started getting a stomach ache that evening.  Then I was sick all the rest of the night!   On Saturday, I still didn't feel that great and was afraid to eat so ate nothing.  I slept really well Saturday night, felt great on Sunday, and cautiously began eating again, so I had:

Breakfast:  about a half cup of a fruit smoothie (made for housemate) and a small clementine.  

Lunch:  steamed zucchini.  this was really good.  oh the simple things.  a few cherries for dessert.

Dinner:  steamed carrots and broccoli.  another clementine.  a few cherries.

I think tomorrow I can go back to normal eating.  I think I'll try not to overeat.  I feel better when I don't.   This episode makes me think I have a problem with sweets.  If I don't eat it, I'm fine.  But if I start, I seem to lack control for stopping it.  When I was growing up, we hardly ever got desserts.  So that probably explains why I was so skinny.  Then when I went to college, I didn't have good control when it came to sweets and I gained about 30 lbs.  Then somehow it came off after college and I was normal again and didn't eat sweets much.   I think I'm experimenting now with how much sweets I can take with these "healthy" recipes and it seems to be not much.    

Thursday, December 18, 2008

red beans and salad

One of my old favorite recipes is red beans and rice, and has a great recipe for it.  I made it today and forgot to buy rice, so had it over salad.  I really liked it.  

red beans (from
chopped salad greens (lettuce, arugula, baby greens, spinach, or whatever else you have in the fridge)
some dried fruit (apple, apricot, mango, etc)
if you have a fresh red bell pepper, that's good too, chopped up.  or some cucumber would probably be good too.  

chop the dried fruit and soak it in some warm bean broth for 15 minutes, or microwave for 30 seconds.

Pour the red beans over the salad, add in the chopped dried fruit and red bell pepper.  I thought this had more flavor with the dried fruit.   I don't eat salt anymore so sometimes old favorite recipes can taste a little bland without something to perk them up.  

dec. 18 food

Breakfast:  blueberry-cherry-spinach smoothie.  this had nuts but no banana since it was only a 5 oz bag of spinach.  I made it last night, makes 2 16 oz smoothies, froze both, then thawed one overnight.  I ate it in between exercise class and hair cut.

Lunch:  red beans and ... salad.  I meant to make red beans and rice but forgot to buy rice at the grocery store.  Housemate was really looking forward to rice so I'd better get some ASAP, after the predicted big snowstorm passes.  So I put it over chopped salad greens (lettuce and baby greens).  To add a little boost of flavor I soaked some chopped dried fruit (apples, apricots, mango) in some of the bean broth,  and added some to our bowls.  also added a chopped red pepper.  I really liked this.  Housemate wanted rice.  I will get some tomorrow I hope.  I'll post this as a recipe because I liked it.

Dinner:  this was not a success but I think I know what to do in the future.  I cooked up 2 small beets and half of a large sweet potato (chopped) in a small amount of water.  ate this over...what else, chopped salad greens.  too dry.  here's what I'll do next time: take half the beet, sweet potato mixture and blend with water and cashews to make a sauce.  pour that over the salad greens with the rest of the beets and sweet potato.  I'll try that next time.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

dec 17 food

Breakfast:  mango-spinach smoothie

Lunch:  kale & sweet potato sauce, and lima beans.  For the beans, I didn't even soak them because lima beans cook pretty quickly, just added water, part of an onion, some veggiezest, herbs du province and fines herbs, and cooked for 4 hours.   They were good and sweet tasting.  I don't think I would have tasted the sweetness if I hadn't given up salt.  I ate too much because I didn't want leftovers, and housemate didn't eat her fair share.  That is a bad reason to eat too much and I need to start thinking of leftovers as a good thing.

Dinner:  Cabbage, apple, and currants.  it is sooo good and easy!  The problem is, I also ate a banana and 1 oz nuts, a carrot, 2 clementines (at least they are tiny).   So I probably overate yet again.   But one thing at a time.  So far I'm eating healthy and I'm not snacking.  Now I just have to cut down on the meal sizes and I should be in good shape.  

kale & sweet potato sauce

I got this recipe from Mark on the Fuhrman forums (modified a bit).
Ingredients for 2 large (main dish) servings:

1 bunch kale and/or collard greens
1 leek or part of an onion (optional)
1 large sweet potato
1 small lime, juiced or 1/2 large
1/3 cup cashews

Destem the greens, chop and cook in a small amount of water, along with the chopped leek.  Cook for 15-20 minutes for kale, about 30 minutes for collard greens.  
peel the sweet potato, chop and steam for 15-20 minutes.  
Blend the sweet potato, cashews, lime and 1/2 cup water.  Add more water if needed.  
Pour the sauce over the greens (which have some water in them) and stir.
This makes a little too much sauce, but I find it's hard to blend smaller quantities in the blender.  So you could add less sauce and save the rest for tomorrow and have another batch then.  Or if you are serving more than 2 people, cook up 2 bunches of the greens.

beets & edamame over arugula

Ingredients for 1 large serving:

2 small beets or 1 large
1/2 cup edamame
optional: chopped apple
chopped arugula or other salad greens, enough to fit on a large plate.

chop the beets and cook in a small amount of water for about 15-20 minutes. Add the apple after about 5 minutes. Add the edamame after about 10 minutes. pour over the salad greens. hard to believe this tastes so good.

warm cabbage & apples

I got this idea from sarey on the Fuhrman forums:
Ingredients for 2 medium servings (I usually eat it all for one meal).

1/4 medium cabbage
1/2 leek or onion
1 apple, cut up (I leave skins on for more nutrition and fiber)
1/8-1/4 cup raisins or currants (optional)
1/4 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Cook it all up for about 15 minutes. really easy, really good.

Here's the nutritional info for a recipe with 2 apples and no raisins, currants or date sugar:
Total calories: 356, protein 7 g (5%), carbs 89 g (92%), fat 1 g (3%).

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

dec 16 food

breakfast:  blueberry-cherry-banana-walnut-lettuce salad.    made it last night so the lettuce was a little soggy but it was still good.   1/3 cup apple cider.

Lunch:  cabbage & apple.  This is just cabbage & apple & currants & onion & curry & cinnamon, chopped and cooked up.   But I made it into a recipe so I can find it easily later.   This was really good, and so easy!    Dessert: orange

Dinner:  cooked chopped beets and edamame over chopped arugula & spinach.  Again, I made it into a recipe for easier reference later.  I Added a small chopped apple near the end because I thought, this is going to be awful.   But it was really good!   I think it would have been good without the apple.   snacked on carrots and celery while cooking---I snack too much while cooking.  had a tangerine for dessert.  1/3 cup apple cider.

Monday, December 15, 2008

dec 15 food

Breakfast:  blueberry-cherry-banana-walnut salad.  This is the same as the blueberry-banana-walnut salad with a half bag of cherries added.  I made extra and gave a portion to housemate for her dinner.   This is my new favorite breakfast.

Lunch:  tons of steamed kale and collard greens with delicious tahini-cashew sauce.  Dessert was apples&raisins&cinnamon.   I didn't have any plans for lunch but knew I had that leftover tahini sauce from last night.  That consisted of  blended sesame seeds, lemon juice and garlic.  It was pretty bitter and strong.  But I was thinking at the time, I bet this would be better if it had cashews in it.  So today I added 1/3 cup cashews and 4 dates and about a cup of water to the mixture (the tahini sauce was pretty thick), and blended that up and it was really good!   I still have a few giant bags of kale and collard greens in the freezer from summer, so I took half of one and cut it up and steamed it along with a chopped leek and chopped red bell pepper (added about halfway through the cooking).  The collard greens take about 30 minutes to get tender.  Then added the cashew-tahini sauce.  So the main course was tons of greens with this sauce on it.  And housemate loved it!   The apples were great too, just chopped them up and added some cinnamon and raisins and microwaved until it was sort of cooked.  This was a great lunch.   I will write up the recipe for tahini-cashew sauce next time I make it.  I'll make it all at once instead of making the tahini sauce first.  I'm not sure what the ratios of sesame seeds to cashews will be so I'll wait until I experiment a bit.

Dinner:  some leftover greens and tahini-cashew sauce.  It was even better than at lunch.  It reminded me of chicken pot pie, which is totally weird!   I think it was the rich creaminess that made me think of that, but it was also a flavor, but the flavor reminded me a bit of fish so I don't know why that would also remind me of chicken pot pie.  Anyway, it was good!  Then I also cooked up some chopped cabbage, beet and apple.  and added some cinnamon and curry powder.  That was easy and good.  I got that idea from someone on the Fuhrman forums, though the beet was my addition.  It might have been better without the beet but I have a lot of beets in the fridge, and it was still good with them.  Then I snacked on stuff while making food for tomorrow as I'll be out for breakfast and lunch.  So I ate a carrot and celery and grapes.  I probably ate too much.   oops.  

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Dec. 14 food

Breakfast:  apple-cranberry salad.  Okay, I am finally tiring of this but I ran out of cranberries today so the timing is good.

Lunch:  spinach-mango smoothie, carrots and celery

Snacking:  grapes, and everything I prepared for dinner

Dinner:  baked falafel and tahini sauce, steamed kale in sweet potato sauce.  I got the falafel recipe from Jennifer on the Fuhrman forums.  You blend cooked chickpeas, cumin, garlic, parsley, some spinach in a food processor.  Then just roll into balls and bake in the oven.  I baked it too long so it was too dry and brown on the bottom.  It's not as good as the deep-fried ones, surprise.   For me, SAD subsitutes aren't as satisfying as the completely new inventions (like the sauce for the kale, yum!).  It's hard to substitute for salty fried foods when you don't use salt and oil!   Then for the tahini sauce, I made it in the blender using raw unhulled sesame seeds, lemon juice, garlic, and some water.  once I figured out to put in more seeds---you need a minimum amount of stuff in the blender for it to work--it made a nice sauce.  tahini sauce is a bit bitter so is an acquired taste.  But I kind of liked it.  Now the sweet potato sauce on the kale was really good!  This consisted of a steamed chopped sweet potato, juice of a lime, and 1/4 cup cashews, and some water.  This was blended up in the blender and then mix in with the steamed kale.  I loved it.  of course, I have a thing for sweet potatoes.  I still have a lot of kale and collard greens in the freezer from our summer garden, so I think I'll be having this a lot, probably for an entire meal, maybe tomorrow night, hmmm.

Dessert:  banana-walnut ice cream from the Fuhrman forums (frozen bananas, soy milk and walnuts blended up).  really yummy.

and with all that, I did eat too much today.  I like to snack on Sunday.   I'll try not to overeat this week.

dec. 13 food

Breakfast:  apple-cranberry salad.  0.5 0z brazil nuts.  5 oz soy milk (homemade, yum--I've found putting in 4 dates to the soy-milk maker makes it just a little sweet and nice tasting).

Lunch:  mashed sweet potato, steamed broccoli and cauliflower.   5 oz soy milk.

Dinner:  banana-blueberry-walnut salad.  carrots and celery sticks.

I didn't overeat yet didn't feel hungry all day.  What's interesting about this day is I went to a nice reception at an Indian restaurant for dinner.  I could have splurged and eaten a bunch of Indian food.  But I was thinking that morning, I'd actually rather have the banana-blueberry-walnut salad (I've been in a banana mood lately).  So once I realized that, then I thought, can I do this?  Will it offend?  Then I thought, it's one thing if I want to splurge, but I shouldn't eat unhealthy food to please others.  So I brought my dinner to the restaurant.  It was buffet style.  I did check out the food and told myself, if I really want it, go for it, but it was hard to tell if stuff was vegan and I didn't see anything I really wanted to eat, though it did smell good which I enjoyed probably more than eating it.  I just had Indian food a few weeks ago in New York and I didn't feel the splurge was worth it, so I didn't feel I really wanted this either.  The hosts got worried and apologized for not serving vegan food.   So I didn't address it head-on.  I should probably warn people in advance if I want to bring my own food because it will be even worse if they go to the trouble to have vegan food prepared and I don't want it.  But it is still a good lesson for me to see that I can do this.  I think you imagine the reaction will be worse than it is. 

Friday, December 12, 2008

dec 12 food

Breakfast:  the usual of late, apple-cranberry salad.   + 1 oz brazil nuts and sunflower seeds (total).   I eat the brazil nuts after exercising and before I get on my bike to ride home.  By then it's been 14 hours since eating and it's cold out and I want some energy to get me home.  Then I eat the sunflower seeds when I get home and am fixing  the salad.   Fuhrman recommends eating sunflower seeds after exercising because they are a good source of high-quality protein.

Lunch:  last of the lentil soup over chopped lettuce and salad greens.  tangerine.

Dinner:   blueberry-banana salad.  Now this is as good as the apple-cranberry salad.  So I will have to eat this more.  I recall posting a few weeks ago that I didn't like this so much.  When I think of it as a salad, maybe the bananas are a weird flavor.  but when I think of it as banana-blueberry-nut compote over greens, then it tastes really good.  I also had 2 carrots, a tangerine and an orange.  I should have stopped here but these bananas I have are at the perfect ripeness and I couldn't resist having one more.  so add a banana to the list.  but it wasn't as good as it is with walnuts and blueberries.   

also 1 cup of pom juice with my vitamins (split between morning and eve).

Thursday, December 11, 2008

kale with cashew sauce

This is my version of recipes from Fuhrman's site and   Check out their versions if you prefer.  


2 bunches kale (and/or collard greens or other leafy green)
3 oz raw cashews
1/2  large onion
1 Tbsp Dr. Fuhrman's veggizest or other powdered veggie broth or no-salt seasoning (optional)

Blend the onion with some (~1/2 cup) water in a blender--don't need it pureed so 5-10 seconds will do it.   Put it in a pan, add the kale, start cooking.   Blend the cashews with some water and veggie zest.  you probably need 2/3 cup water to have enough volume to blend smoothly.  As the water in the pan boils down (after about 10 minutes),  add the cashew sauce and cook for another 5-10 minutes.   the sauce will thicken.  Add water if needed.   Note:  kale only needs 10-15 minutes to cook, collard greens need 20-30.  The cashews give it a sweet and creamy taste.  

food dec. 11

Breakfast:  favorite apple-cranberry salad; 1/3 cup pomegranate juice

Lunch:  had a light lunch because I had a massage this afternoon!  so I had a sliced banana, 1/2 bag frozen blueberries, 1/2 oz chopped (in a coffee grinder) walnuts, and a clementine.  put that in a bowl and microwaved to heat it up.  okay, the clementine didn't really go with the rest, so I just ate those pieces first and then ate the rest.  lesson learned.  It was really good though.

Dinner:  ate 2 carrots and a piece of celery while fixing collard greens and kale with cashew sauce. The greens came from the freezer from last summer's garden.  I've been neglecting them and I don't want them to get too old.  1/3 cup pomegranate juice.    Now, I could have shared the kale.  So I probably ate too much.  Next time if I'm alone (usually am at dinner) I should make less.  Yeah, I'm feeling tired and overly full.  oops!    fortunately, it was only 2 oz of nuts and a bunch of low-calorie greens.  still, you shouldn't get overly full (according to my leader, Dr. Fuhrman).

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

brussels sprouts and beets

This was just veggies from the fridge but I actually really liked it so am logging it as a recipe so I can remind myself later on:

brussels sprouts, cut into 2-3 pieces each
1 beet, chopped
2 Tbsp currants (or raisins)
1 Tbsp ground sunflower or pumpkin seeds
1 tsp flavored vinegar (I tried pear this time)
1/2 cup frozen edamame (optional)
plate of chopped salad greens (lettuce, spinach, baby spring mix, arugular whatever)

Cook up the brussels sprouts and beet in a small amount of water and vinegar (add more if it boils down too much), for about 10 minutes I guess.  Then add the currants and ground seeds and edamame for another 5 minutes or until the brussels sprouts are tender.   Pour over the chopped greens.   Tastes surprisingly good!  who woulda thunk.

dec 10 food

Breakfast:  spinach-mango smoothie.   and 1 oz brazil nuts and sunflower seeds and a tiny apple. oh, an 1/2 cup pomegranate juice to take my vitamins with.  I knew I was going to have a rushed morning so made the smoothie last night and froze it.  thaws in 1 minute in the microwave!

Lunch:  took out some soup from the freezer and had it over chopped salad greens (lettuce, baby greens).  didn't know what the soup was when I took it out (yesterday).  it appears to be the creamy lentil soup.

Dinner:  repeat of a few days ago, veggies from the fridge:  brussels sprouts and chopped beet,    This is easy and satisfying, for me anyway.   also had a raw carrot and celery while cooking, and 2 tangerines for dessert. and 1/2 cup pomegranate juice to take my vitamins with.   Unfortunately eating was rushed as I had to go to a meeting.  It's hard to rush these kinds of meals with all the chewing of lettuce involved.  So I need to plan more time to eat than I used to!

I didn't overeat today.   and I feel plenty full 4 hours after dinner.    interesting...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Dec. 9 food

Breakfast:   what else?    apple-cranberry salad

Lunch:  the last of the shepherd's pie. which I ate over a bed of chopped lettuce and arugula. I'm starting to think you can eat anything over chopped greens--just think of them as a substitute for rice. I ate two helpings to finish it off and it was a bit too much.  I am slightly improving on overeating at mealtime but still am not there.  It's a learning process because I'm also training myself to not snack in between meals and I'm learning how big my meals need to be to last until the next one.   Funny, when I was a kid, we ate this way too--3 meals a day, no snacks, and no desserts.  I was skinny too.   Coincidence?

Then house-mate was cold and wanted some hot chocolate so I had an idea for both hot cocoa and chocolate-cashew dip (inspired by a discussion on the Fuhrman forums).  It was great!   I made my portion with carob powder and dipped a banana in it.  

Dinner:  I had a big lunch and had to run out for a meeting, so just had a grapefruit and banana with the carob-cashew dip.  yummy.

chocolate-cashew dip and/or hot cocoa

1/2 cup raw unsalted cashews
1/2 cup water
3-4 dates, pitted
1 Tbsp cocoa or carob powder
1/4 tsp vanilla

Blend it all up in the blender until creamy and smooth.    This is soooo goood.  You can stop here and dip a banana in it, yum, or strawberries or carrots.  Then if you also want some hot cocoa, divide the remaining dip into two mugs (unless you ate a lot of it, then just one mug).    Add another tsp of cocoa, and 1 Tbsp of sugar or sweetener of choice (optional).  Heat it in the microwave.  Add more cocoa or sweetener as desired (depends on how big your mug is).  This was the best hot cocoa I ever tasted (I only tasted it as I made it for house-mate).   The dip with carob is great so I suspect the hot "cocoa" with carob substituted would be great too.   Note: each serving is only 1/4 cup cashews which is about 1 oz, so not excessive.  Of course, the sweeteners are a bit excessive so this definitely counts as an occasional treat.  

I got this idea from people on the Fuhrman forums talking about what they eat when they want something sweet, and someone talked about dipping bananas into a chocolate-peanut butter dip.   It was in the back of my mind as my bananas have been ripening to perfection this week.  

Monday, December 8, 2008

dec 8 food

Breakfast: 1 Tbsp sunflower seeds followed by my favorite apple-cranberry salad

Lunch:  leftover shepherd's pie.  

Dinner:  snacked on a carrot and celery while making dinner which was brussels sprouts and a beet (chopped) cooked in a little water with a little of a flavored vinegar, a Tbsp ground sunflower seeds, oh and some currants.  I put this over a bed of chopped arugula and spinach.  I've found lettuce greens are a great substitute for grains like rice and potatoes.  Just eat everything over a bed of greens!  anyway, this was surprisingly good.  This was just veggies from the fridge over greens from the fridge.  Then I had a grapefruit.  and I didn't need anything else but I had already soaked a couple of dried figs to make a blueberry sorbet (frozen blueberries, figs and pomegranite juice).  It was good.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

going back in time

I didn't do a lot of exercise on my trip, just some pushups, squats and yoga in my hotel room, but nothing like the exercise classes I go to at the Monkey Bar Gym.  So this morning I was ready to do something.  But it was -3 degrees Fahrenheit and icy on the roads.  So I decided to run on the treadmill in our basement even though I usually think that is very boring.  Well, it turns out it is not so much more boring than running outside.  Running is kind of boring whether you do it inside or outside.  The ipod with my favorite music helps.  So anyway, with the treadmill I could set my pace.   I have this dream of running 10 minute miles.  I thought I was pretty far from that but I set the treadmill at 5.8 mph and that seemed an okay pace.  A 10 minute mile is 6 mph so I'm not far away!   I ran 3 miles.   Any more than that and I just get too bored.  I was very happy about this.  wow.  I haven't run this pace in 20 years!   I remember when I was about 20 years old, I could run 3 miles in 24 minutes.  So that's 8 minute miles.  I seriously think I will never reach that again.  But I'm surprised that I'm so close to 10 minute miles.   

So here's the explanation of the subject of my post:  going back in time.  I went vegan 3.5 years ago.  about 2 years ago I had lost 30 lbs and reached the weight I am about now.  But I broke my kneecap so had no idea that my aerobic capacity had probably improved significantly.  About 1.5 years ago I joined the Monkey Bar Gym (MBG) to build up my strength after getting significantly weaker from being unable to walk (without crutches or leg brace) for 4 months.  So about 1 year ago was when I started noticing that my aerobic capacity seemed to be much improved.  About a half year ago I started jogging, and was running better than I was 10 years ago.  And now I'm running better than I was about 20 years ago!   So it's like I'm going back in time.   And I only jog about twice a month!   That's because it is only a small part of my exercise plan.  The MBG is much harder and works on the entire body but we do a lot of sprints and jumping rope so that obviously helps my jogging.    I wonder how far this can continue.  I'm 48 years old, approaching 49.   There's no way I can get as good as I was running when I was 20, right?  That's inconceivable.  right?    And my body looks great too.  I'm frickin'  48 years old.  That is totally inconceivable.    Oh, a huge reason I can jog faster is simply that I weigh less than I did 10, 20 years ago.  I probably haven't weighed this little since I was 20 years old.   The other reason is that the healthy eating has cleared out my arteries so I don't get out of breath so easily.

dec 7 food

Breakfast:  in a hurry so grabbed a moothie from the freezer:  mango-spinach smoothie except it was peaches and baby romaine.  Not as good as mango-spinach, FYI.  

Lunch:  my favorite apple-cranberry-lettuce salad.  This isn't just my favorite salad but I think one of my most favorite meals ever.  I'll be sad when cranberry and apple season is over.  I'm still getting fresh ones locally.  

Dinner:  Vegetable Shepherd's Pie, from the Fuhrman members site.   I snacked a bit while making it, on some carrots and almonds.  I really like this dish.  It has several vegetables, a small amount of carrot juice, and is topped with mashed sweet potatoes.  It's pretty too, with the bright orange topping.  And the chopped almonds are a great touch.   The recipe calls for crumbled tofu but I'm not a big fan of tofu and am a big fan of edamame, so I ground edamame instead.  Housemate loves peas so I think I would uses peas instead next time.  I had two helpings but don't think I overate.  I finished it off with some fresh-squeezed grapefruit/orange juice.  Dr. Fuhrman doesn't recommend grapefruits because studies have found a dramatic increase in breast cancer among women who eat grapefruits regularly.  I suppose I should heed his advice.  I just love these organic grapefruit from Texas--Rio Star is the brand.   sigh.  What if it's only when combined with unhealthy food that it causes this effect?  Darn, I suppose I should stop eating them.  I have 3 left.   Anyway, one more thing I ate after dinner:  I made applesauce for housemate from a big bag of apples her family gave us.  So I ate a small bowl.   mmmm, freshly made warm applesauce is yummy.  and very simple, just apples, water, and sugar.   I froze the rest for housemate to have as a snack at work.   

Friday, December 5, 2008

food and travel logs dec. 4-6

I'm on a trip and I brought most of my food.  It's worked out really well.  This is proof of how weird I am but I have to say, my food tastes better than anything else I saw people eating.   Also, most people around me are overweight and don't look very healthy, and having already done that, I prefer this.


Breakfast:  apple, banana, applenut flax bar (sorry, on fuhrman members website), 2 date nut pop'ems (best treat ever).  

Lunch:  grapefruit, apple, carrots, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems

Dinner:  salad from nearby veggie restaurant:  greens, carrots, broccoli, sprouts, onion, tomatoes; 2 oranges, apple, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems


Breakfast:  apple, grapefruit, banana, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems

Lunch:  orange, apple, carrots, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems

Dinner:  2 apples, orange, same salad as yesterday from nearby veggie restaurant, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems


Breakfast:  apple, grapefruit, banana, applenut flax bar, 2 date nut pop'ems

Lunch:  orange, carrots, 4 date nut pop'ems

Dinner:  I got home late, was hungry and craving greens so went grocery shopping (prolonging the hunger!) and made my favorite salad with apples and cranberries.  Oh, I had a slight splurge after dinner to celebrate an exciting new work project that will extend my employment by about a year, which, nowadays, is good news.  I shouldn't celebrate with food though!  but anyway, there were 3 date nut pop'ems left so I ate them.  I wasn't hungry and then I was a bit too full.  So I still have to work on not over-eating.  that's fine.

At the vegetarian restaurant where I got my salad (a wonderful restaurant called One World Cafe), they had these fabulous looking vegan baked goods.  Oh my gosh.  I reminded myself that they were made of gross fat stuff.   So I didn't partake and didn't miss it or crave it once I left the restaurant.  But the psychology is kind of weird.  Before I became vegan, I never desired baked goods that much.  Nonvegan baked goods are a dime a dozen and they felt kind of heavy in my stomach.  But after becoming vegan, since they are so rare, seeing these beautiful vegan treats does make me want them, because I know it's such a rare opportunity to eat them.  So I probably have eaten baked goods more often since becoming a vegan.   Anyway, my date nut pop'ems taste as good as any of those treats would.   

Note, I didn't eat enough greens on this trip.  A salad at lunch would have been good but would have been more of an effort and would have meant less interaction with people and that was the point of this business trip.  The applenut flax bars and date nut pop'ems were really good additions, with high caloric density to fill me up.   I'm very happy that I succeeded in eating healthy on this trip.  I felt great.  I really feel better when I don't overeat and when I don't snack.  Dr. Fuhrman is right that it's good for you to not eat between meals.  He says it's because when you are not digesting, you body is doing important detox of your cells.   If you never give it a chance to do this, you don't clean out your cells.   I can only go on his word since I don't know the science.  However, even if that is bogus, I can go with what feels good in my body and this does.   

dec. 2 & 3 food

Dec. 2 

Breakfast:   salad (lettuce, spinach), mixed berries, pineapple, apple, sunflower & flaxseed (1 Tbsp a piece).  heated up the fruit in the microwave (apple first and longer).  as usual.  added cinnamon too, 1/4 tsp.   

Lunch:  spinach-mango green smoothie.  used peaches instead of mangos.  mangos are better.

Dinner:  made a casserole from a recipe someone posted on the Fuhrman forums.  You grind 1 cup of pecans in 5 cups of water, combine that with 2 cups of brown rice in a casserole dish.  Add a bunch of vegetables.  I put in brussels sprouts on one side for me, broccoli on the other side for housemate.  It was good but a little bland.  I think I'd rather have a more nutritious soup over salad.    also had a carrot, 2 date nut pop'ems, a grapefruit, and orange, and some nuts while preparing the dinner.  I ate too much.


Breakfast:  back to my favorite salad, as the co-op had more cranberries.  This is the salad with apples & cranberries with orange-cashew dressing.  I love this!

Lunch:  leftover casserol, grapefruit, 3 date nut pop'ems

Dinner:  while traveling:  same salad as breakfast (yum!), carrot, 2 date nut pop'ems.

Monday, December 1, 2008

brussels sprouts and nut sauce

brussels sprouts, I usually cut them in half or thirds
1/4 cup cashews or almonds (raw)
some leek, onion, green onion, or onion powder
1/2 cup soy milk (or so, I never measure)

Steam the brussels sprouts and onion until tender (15 minutes?).  if using onion powder, save that for the sauce.  
To make the sauce, grind up the nuts in a coffee grinder (or food processor or blender).  then heat up with soy milk in a small pan (and onion powder if using).  It will thicken after about 5 minutes (just like gravy), so add more soy milk or water as needed to get your desired consistency.  
When everything's done, put the veggies in a bowl, pour the sauce over it.  It's a good balance of tastes with the brussels sprouts and nut sauce.

dec 1 food

Breakfast: same salad as yesterday.  apple-blueberry-pineapple-cinnamon compote over shredded lettuce and spinach.  Instead of flaxseed, I mixed in ground sunflower seeds (I used a coffee grinder).  Both of these are good for soaking up the fruit juice.   I eat this after exercising so I'm usually very hungry and just about anything would taste good then.  I also biked in the snow which added to my hunger.

Lunch:  I tried out a recipe for sweet potato fries.  It's easy, you just slice them up, add some garlic and onion powder and bake at 400 for an hour or so, turning a lot.   It was good but it's even easier to just bake the potato and mash it and it's more moist that way.  I don't miss french fries so don't have a psychological need for these, so I doubt I'll repeat it.  But housemate liked it (and coincidentally she likes fries).  Okay, that was the side dish.  Then I also made brussels sprouts and nut sauce.  For housemate I made mashed potatoes--these just had steamed potatoes, part of a leek (steamed too), and some ground almonds and soy milk.  They were excellent.  See I made soy milk this weekend for some of the treats, so today I made things that used up the rest of the soy milk.  By the way, this batch of soy milk was really good.  I just did soy beans and threw in 4 dates.  That made it a little sweet but not too much.  just right.  

Dinner:  leftover brussels sprouts.  It was really good but not enough.  So I steamed up some broccoli and carrots and made more nut sauce to pour over it.    I also have a couple of grapefruits to get rid of so I made some grapefruit orange juice.  That was very very yummy.  Now that was way easier than making sorbets or oat bars and I think it tasted better.  I think I like the simple desserts like oranges.  However, the date nut pop'ems are the exception.  Those are sooo good.  I had two of them.  plus a few nuts.  I ate too many nuts again today.  I'll have to go back to measuring out my nut portions.   I can tell when I eat too many (stinky farts...).  In case you didn't know it, vegans and health food nuts like to talk about pooping and farting.  We do so much of it.  hey, at least we aren't constipated.  which means no hemorrhoids either.  knock on wood.