Friday, August 29, 2014

Egressions #176-177

177. Let's use the whole can of milk, though. Via Food52.

YOU GUYS this no-churn ice cream is so easy, and so good! Next I'm going to make chocolate ice cream with chocolate liqueur, and then green tea ice cream with I'm not sure what... do you think Midori would be good? Or gross. Or what if I just used vodka for everything, I think the alcohol is mainly to keep the ice cream from getting icy? I also have spiced rum. And malort, haha.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

State of the Blog
 summer 2014

Let's see.

The main thing that I'm excited and a little proud about is that I'm heading into the home stretch with my monthly food charts, a year in food charts! I. Am the only one excited about that. But what I've mainly been doing with this blog is developing a food system that works for me, if nobody else, and by George, I think I've got it. I mean, I think I've got it to the extent that I'm having thoughts about writing it up in a more permanent form, viz., a book. But what, party of one, your book is ready? It seems ridiculous, and still. I have these thoughts.

Possibly not unrelated to the above, blog stats have backed off from 400 hits per day to more like three hundred. Which I don't write this blog for the stats so isn't supposed to bother me...

but it doesssss, a little

but not enough for me to change what i'm doing

Just because you choose something doesn't mean that it's never going to bother you. You're going to end up never choosing if you're waiting around for that choice that's not going to bother you at all. Our lives are going to bother us from time to time.

So yes, I want to finish out the year with these inaccessible food charts and inapplicable cooking practices, and furthermore I want to take this whole year as my first draft and jump right into... a second draft. I've actually had thoughts about taking off A Whole Year from the blog to work on this book of food charts.

At the same time, there's so much more that I want to be writing for the blog. Like I wanted to be writing about habits all this year, and at this point I'm simultaneously triumphantly heading into the home stretch with food charts and throwing in the towel with habits, train go sorry Charlie, maybe next year? And sheesh, every other day, I'm writing in my head about why I don't like to focus on calories for food or fitness, or weight loss as a goal, or truthfully even fat loss as a goal, or slimming or sculpting any body part, not that I don't think those things work, just that they don't work for me and I want to work with things that work for me, and I want you to work with things that work for you, so the same sort of things should work for me and you for us to work together!


m: jaegger pilots!
p: hahahahahaha!

Though there are a lot more specifics that go with that, and those haven't gotten written not because I don't have time, but because I have been choosing to play derby and also pretty significantly rest for playing derby in the time that I might otherwise be writing everything that I want to say about everything.

And that's basically the state of the blog for now. As I grow older and wiser, I'm less and less inclined to predict how things will turn out, and more inclined just to do things and that's how they turn out. Second Wind is going through October, and I'm in for another home season that I think goes through March, and I guess I'll see how I feel then, if I feel like I want to do something different.

ETA: You know what? I'm going to take a break, this is when I used to take breaks after all. I have a chicken stock recipe and my early fall food chart in the pipeline, those can publish on their own. I might write up cooking practices for the month, then break for real until it's fall for real.

ETA 8/29/14: I was at peace with not reaching 10,000 hits in August, and in what I'm sure is a glitch or robots, yesterday at 11:00PM there were 1,905 hits. What is that, it's wrecking my graphs.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Greek Yogurt Date Sesame Smoothie

greek yogurt date sesame smoothie

I use the Bella Cucina Rocket Blender to make my smoothies. Erk, my windowsill is so dirty. Can you see that it's wet?

But waiiit, I had one more idea for a smoothie before it gets too cold to drink smoothies, which given how cool this summer has been could be any minute now. Actually this is a good going into fall smoothie like this pumpkin smoothie, it's not as icy as a frozen fuit smoothie.

The idea came to me from here, woah, date halvah smoothie, that pretty much fits my fruit + nut butter formula, and woah, a jar of halvah costs thirty dollars?! Both of which I expressed on facebook to which Spunk responded, tahini, seven bucks. Off to the lab!

It actually took quite a few tries to get this right, frozen fruit is generally what I use to make smoothies cold and thick. Frozen dates don't blend well at all, and for that matter regular room temperature dates don't blend much better. I tried frozen banana but blech, I can always taste banana. I mean, it's okay if I want banana. I finally went with date paste for smooth, which does up the pain in the butt quotient a little bit, ice cubes for cold, and chia seed for thick.

The result is really, really, really good, very lush, with pure date and sesame flavors.

For the date paste:
pitted dates
boiling water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Roughly chop the pitted dates, pack them into a pint jar, and pour boiling water over them to cover. I let them soak for a few hours until the water cools to room temperature.

Dump the dates and water into the bowl of a food processor, add vanilla and salt, and process for 5-10 minutes until very smooth.

Put the paste back into the jar and refrigerate for up to three months. Haha, good luck with that.

For the smoothie:
two ice cubes
four big spoonfuls of greek yogurt
two spoonfuls of date paste
two spoonfuls of tahini
1 spoonful chia seed

For best results put an ice cube into the cup first, then the greek yogurt, then the other ice cube, then the date paste, tahini, and chia seed and then enough water to fill the cup. Screw on the cap, stick the cup on the motor base, and blend for 30 seconds. Then take it off the base and give it a little shake to get anything that's stuck on the top of the cup. Blend for another 20 seconds or until the smoothie is churning freely from top to bottom.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Girl Meets Wall
 which is a thing that happens

Welp, I had one more idea for a warm chicken and roasted cauliflower and tomato salad over avocado, and then I burned out on chicken jars for lunch, like, in the middle of lunch. When that happens, it is serious. Like I stopped eating my lunch halfway through and pushed it away. So I will put a pin in that for when it comes around again.

Onward to early fall!

Monday, August 25, 2014

// wash gear for love of god
\\ wash dishes
\ a little extra ice cream to use up leftover milk
/ Early Fall Food Chart

Do you want to know about my hieroglyphics? // is for errands, those are two legs walking, \\ is cleaning, those are two hands working, \ is cooking, that's a pot handle, and / is writing, that's a pencil.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Forty Seven!

forty seven!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

So It's Just Not Gonna Happen Like That

p: ::sluuuuurp::

m: so how is the tiny straw.

p: well...

p: there's no danger with the tiny straw of accidentally sucking up unblended banana.

p: so there's that.

p: ::sluuuuurp::

p: actually you can quite effectively vacuum up around the unblended banana.

p: with no fear of it shooting into your mouth.

m: well, that's good.

p: yes, it's one of the most horrifying experiences of life.

I Bet You're Wonderin How I Knew


m: !

p: ...

p: i picked what i thought was a ball of thread off the couch.

p: but in fact it was a dead fly.

p: that's what that was all about.

p: i thought, what a strange texture for a ball of thread.

m: indeed it would have been.

p: either that or it's a raisin with wings.

Wine Spritzer

wine spritzer

I'm back on the sauce, wooooo!

For a time I was figuring out a different alcoholic drink for every season on my ultimate food chart and it wasn't working, it seemed dumb to make drinking into a habit if it wasn't happening on its own; but then, it did. Start happening. Don't worry, okay? Everybody who really knows me is Not Worried. Drinking has never worked for me, well, because my dad was an alcoholic, but also because I have an incredibly minuscule tolerance for alcohol. And I've never wanted to override the latter because of the former. Still it seems pleasant to drink and be mildly buzzed, I've never had that. I'm down for a little mind alteration now and again. And a few things have been coming together over the past couple years that have pointed me toward how to get that, viz., drinking mulled wine at Box and Brawla's Thanksgiving dinners, discovering Stiegl Radlers after Third Coast tryouts last summer, discovering prosecco and wine in general at Trouble's wine parties.

I drink comically little as it is—whoever sits next to me at the bar gets the other half of my beer—but I've discovered the trick is to drink even less than that, like homeopathic quantities of alcohol. Like wine instead of liquor in cocktails or for that matter, instead of wine.

Anyway, I had a lovely afternoon housecleaning with songza and wine spritzers. Here's my recipe for those of you who need your prosecco watered down with soda and ice.


Fill a glass with ice, fill half the glass with prosecco, and finish with aranciata.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Warm Chicken and Roasted Broccoli and Tomato Salad over avocado

warm chicken and roasted broccoli and tomato on avocado

The tomatoes disintegrated more than I wanted this time, I'm giving you the standard recipe below but telling you that I subbed out the red wine vinegar for disintegrated tomatoes and made tomato vinaigrette. Which was very good.

a head of broccoli
a red or yellow bell pepper
a pint of cherry tomatoes
three-quarters of 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil
kosher salt
black pepper
a rotisserie chicken
avocados for plating

Heat oven to 500 degrees.

Trim and slice the broccoli, dice the pepper, and leave the cherry tomatoes whole. Toss lightly with olive oil and salt in a baking pan. Roast until vegetables are softened and a little bit charred, stirring occasionally, about twenty to thirty minutes.

Eyeball three-quarters of a third cup vinegar and then measure a third cup olive oil into the cup of a rocket blender, add a pinch of salt and some grinds of black pepper, and whirr it all together.

Take the breast and thigh meat off the chicken, saving the rest for snacks and soup, and cut it up into bite-size pieces.

Add the chicken to the vegetables when they are done, pour over the vinaigrette and toss thoroughly.

Obviously at this point, you can eat the salad over an avocado or whatever. I'm making this for my work lunches, so I divide salad between four jars.

To serve from the jar, heat the jar in the microwave for three minutes—be careful, the jar will be hot—and empty it over a peeled, halved avocado.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Late Summer Chart redux

morning morning morning morning morning morning morning
afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon
evening evening evening evening evening evening evening

Two tiny adjustments, though:

  • one client moved from Tuesday evening to Saturday morning
  • referees are back from break, Sunday evening
  • oh and, I'm leading learn to skate clinics for the league, those start Sunday afternoon after Labor Day
  • lol my house will never be clean, my clothes will always be in rags
  • might as well add another Saturday client, anybody?

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Late Summer Saturday Cooking Practice

So now Saturday goes sort of like Sunday and Tuesday, the waking up and words and all that, and all I have to scramble some eggs and grab a melon jar out of the fridge.

scrambled eggs and avocado, tomato, and honeydew salsa

I was feeling fancy and made avocado tomato salsa with honeydew melon and jalapeno pepper. Just lightly dressed with key lime juice and salt.

Then I clean, whatever needs doing most. I have a huge list, but I hardly ever get to the list because now der schweetie is mannying three days a week so, hold the phone, I have been helping with the laundry. I am in charge of sheets and towels. How is there so much laundry, I don't know; but there is. He has been doing it single-handedly for six years, I really must get him a fruit basket.

This has put paid to my peaceful Saturday morning stretch and roll, but I don't mind. Cleaning is active; you get that, right? It's actually kind of sweaty, even. Because of the sweatiness, the best thing in the world after cleaning is to take a shower and then I mix up a fresh batch of koldskal, which goes like this:

  1. Whisk two eggs yolks with two tablespoons of sugar and a tablespoon of vanilla in a pitcher.
  2. Whisk in two cups of greek yogurt, also known as half a container.
  3. Whisk in a pint of buttermilk and two tablespoons key lime juice.

Then I cut up a peach into a bowl and pour over some koldskal.

peaches and koldskal

Put the rest in a jar for next week.

Oh and, make Sunday's grocery list. Maybe even, hold the phone again, go out and get Sunday's groceries.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Fish Tacos

fish tacos with brussels slaw, avocado, and tomato

Finally, fish tacos! Or fish taco salad I guess, I just make tacos on lettuce and these turned out kind of messy; so we ended up eating them with a fork.

To me, fish tacos are: fried fish, slaw, avocado, and tomato. On lettuce, but obviously you can put them on corn tortillas if you want. For the slaw, brussels sprouts are my go-to tiny cabbages, or possibly belgian endive would be nice too.

a head of boston or butter lettuce
six or nine brussels sprouts
a carrot
lime juice
1/2 lb tilapia
coconut oil for frying
an avocado
a tomato
kosher salt
black pepper

Separate the leaves from the head of lettuce, rinse, spin dry, and divide between two plates. We are making fish tacos for two.

Trim, halve, core—by core, I mean trim out the little stem of the sprout— and thinly slice the brussels sprouts. Peel and grate the carrot, and toss in a bowl with the sprouts. Whisk together about three spoonfuls of mayonnaise with enough lime juice to thin it a bit, pour the mayonnaise over the slaw, and toss together.

Dredge the tilapia in flour. Heat a good layer of oil in a skillet until it's shimmering, then lay the tilapia in the pan and fry for a couple minutes on both sides. Remove and drain on a couple layers of paper towel, then roughly chop into pieces.

Finally peel, pit, and slice the avocado and dice the tomato.

Layer a spoonful of slaw on each lettuce leaf, then fish, avocado, and tomato, and finish with a sprinkle of kosher salt and a couple grinds of black pepper.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Cherry Lime Soda

cherry lime soda

This is my new favorite thing, I guess I'd say that I've quelled the Coke demon in the house at least. This is what I want to drink when I want to drink soda. If it's not around like when I'm at work or at a bar, then Coke gets in sometimes. But at work it's specifically when I've slept badly and can't think, and I've been ordering club soda and lime more when I'm out, or Stiegl Radlers; so it's not too much. Still Coke and popcorn at the movies, though.

club soda
tart cherry juice
key lime juice

Fill a glass mostly with club soda, then add a splash of tart cherry juice and a squirt of key lime juice.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Late Summer Tuesday Cooking Practice

Tuesdays start like Sundays, wake up, coffee, words, get up and tidy the bedroom and the kitchen. I still have watermelon jars in the fridge, but I'm standing here so whack whack whack some other melon, put three-quarters in three jars, plate the last quarter, and now instead of boiled eggs, I make scrambled eggs. VARIETY.

scrambled eggs and cantaloupe

Eventually I get up and set about making ground meat and greens, same as it ever was:

  1. Start either some Korean ground beef or Chinese ground pork in a saute pan.
  2. Also put on a pot of water for turnip or mustard greens.
  3. By the time you put the meat on the back burner to simmer for twenty minutes, the water should be boiling for the greens. Dump the greens into the boiling water, blanch for a few minutes, and then drain and run cold water over them. Grab them by the handful and squeeze dry, then slice and dress with a little sesame oil, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar right in their container.
  4. When the meat is done, put it into its container.

greens and meat

The red pieces are beet greens, which I had extras of and just threw in.

turkey meatballs and green beans

Now and again I make turkey meatballs, I like slow-cooked green beans with turkey meatballs as a change from greens. These are not slow-cooked green beans, though, these are leftover Mon Lung's Szechuan green beans, so even better.

I do the end of week grocery list, whatever I need for fish tacos on Friday and a fresh batch of koldskal on Saturday.

Peaches and koldskal for Tuesday lunch, too.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Late Summer Chart

morning morning morning morning morning morning morning
afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon afternoon
evening evening evening evening evening evening evening

Break's over!

So yeah, I'll be picking up Thursday for work at least through the end of summer:

  • sooo I bumped Thursday cleaning and tasks to Saturday
  • an okay amount of play and pastime desk work happens in those orange blocks, I'm happy enough with that. Actually lately a good amount of blog work has been happening when I'm eating breakfast or lunch, I guess obviously because I've just taken a picture of what I'm eating and might as well upload and process and write it up, just as relaxing as pinterest and more productive within certain tolerances of the words "relaxing" and "productive"
  • lol my poor clothes can't get the time of day, oh well
  • I've been blogging a bit at bedtime, too

More days working means more food to be covered in cooking practices, see those.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Late Summer Sunday Cooking Practice

Oh-bla-di, oh-bla-da, life goes onnn, brahhh!!!

Wake up usually by eight, get coffee in bed like the spoiled princess I am, do my words and email my clients, get up and tidy the bedroom and the kitchen, boil my eggs for the week, ten total now that I work four days a week, and whack whack whack cut up the week's watermelon. Or cantaloupe. Or honeydew melon, you know, ninety percent of all honeydew tastes like styrofoam, but if you can get an actual honey of a dew, it is really delicious melon. Put three-quarters in three jars, plate the last quarter, the timer goes off for the eggs, run cold water over them and peel two for the plate. Take the plate to the couch for breakfast.

hardboiled eggs and honeydew

I already scarfed an egg before I remembered to take a picture.

Eventually get up and put the eight other eggs into a carton to bring to work. I only have three jars; so I will need to re-up my melon jars later in the week, easy enough.

Then set about making chicken jars for the week. Lately I like the warm ones, they go like this:

  1. heat oven to 500 degrees
  2. trim and cut the vegetable du semaine, sweet or hot pepper, and cherry tomatoes, toss with olive oil and salt in a baking pan, and roast for 20-30 minutes
  3. blend a scant 1/3 cup vinegar with 1/3 cup olive oil in a rocket blender cup for vinaigrette
  4. take apart the rotisserie chicken, saving the excess in the freezer for stock
  5. when the veggies are done, pour over the vinaigrette and toss
  6. divide veggies between the four jars
  7. divide the chicken between the four jars
I need all four jars for my four days of work, so all of them go into the fridge.

warm chicken and roasted broccoli and tomato jars

I'm not hungry yet, anyway. I do Tuesday's grocery list. When I do get hungry, I tuck into a bowl of peaches and koldskal.

Friday, August 8, 2014

Egressions #168-169

168. LIFE-CHANGING crackers. Via My New Roots.
169. HELLO. Via Food52.

So I've been figuring something out about myself, there are things that I'm SUPER attracted to, like LIFE-CHANGING crackers, no seriously, those crackers look really really good, or basically every cocktail that I pin, but maybe particularly anything made with watermelon. I'm so attracted to them, but. The moment of truth when I'm facing down a bag of sunflower and pumpkin seeds is never going to find me dragging down the baking pan, and always going to find me eating the seeds out of the bag, and the same with watermelon. Almost always with the watermelon. Not saying that it's wrong to provide yourself with new taste sensations, not at all. Just that for me watermelon is good the way it is, and less work, and kind of better for you without tequila, that's where I always end up and I'm wondering, is this how it works? Like a whole class of things that I like to think about, that I experience through just thinking about them? That's a thing, right? I think it's a thing.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Late Summer Food Chart

Black coffee in bed.
Hard-boiled eggs with watermelon for work breakfasts.
Scrambled eggs with cantaloupe at home.
Chicken jars for work lunches.
Cherries (!) and koldskal at home.
Cherry lime soda (!!) and mixed nuts for afternoon snack.
Ground meat, greens, and rice for pre-workout dinner.
Beetlejuice for pre-workout drink.
Cococherry2O for workout drink.
Fruit, nut butter, and yogurt smoothies for post-workout snack.
Tart cherry soda and coco popcorn for Friday evening snack.

Mein gott, late summer already. Just a few changes this month.

So to keep things simple with my extra day of work, I'm doing eggs and watermelon or cantaloupe across the board, hardboiled for work, scrambled at home. Scrambled eggs and melon is very good, and even easier than avocado tomato salsa.

Cherries are in season now; berries would probably be good, too.

Feeling pretty full of fruit so if I need an afternoon snack, I switch it up with a glass of cherry lime soda and some mixed nuts.

Hello there, fish tacos! Recipe TK.

Just by the by, I'm not really eating coco popcorn for Friday after dinner snack. I could if I wanted to, but I haven't. So I just have a glass of tart cherry soda, pro tip, add a few squirts of key lime juice and you have cherry-lime soda, so good!

Ultimate food chart! Always tweaking...
Late Summer food planner for the extremely detail-oriented.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Greek Yogurt Almond Butter Cherry Smoothie

almond butter cherry smoothie

I use the Bella Cucina Rocket Blender to make my smoothies.

One more!

frozen cherries
four big spoonfuls of greek yogurt, maybe 1/2–1 cup?
two big spoonfuls of almond butter, maybe 2 tablespoons–1/4 cup?
enough water to cover the cherries

Put enough frozen cherries to half fill the blender cup, then the greek yogurt, then the almond butter, and then water. Screw on the cap, stick the cup on the motor base, and blend for 30 seconds. Then take it off the base and give it a little shake to get anything that's stuck on the top of the cup. Blend for another 20 seconds or until the smoothie is churning freely from top to bottom.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Mini State of the Break

This break is a fascinating field experiment, remove one variable and observe the flow in its absence.

How it is: I get home from work and I'm pretty tired, exhausted even, and I think honestly this is from spending most of my willpower turning myself away from distractions and toward the various and sundry tasks that the very nice people who employ me, after all, pay me to do. I have improved extremely since my bereavement in my ability to do this, but it is an effort; these days it's a successful effort, at least. Willpower is an exhaustible resource, and when I get home I think I won't ever be able to make myself do another blessed thing ever again.

Willpower, however, is also a renewable resource. All I really need is to decompress for, like, half an hour on the couch. When I have late practice, I get this and it's more or less all good. "More or less all good" is probably some sort of non sequitur, oh well. When I have 6:30 or 7:00 practice, it's a mad rush without too much time to think about how miserable I am. Wait, what, did I just say that I feel miserable about going to practice? Yes, I did. I do, sometimes; and then I go, anyway. Because derby, see that's what I've been thinking. I've been thinking that without the gravitas of derby to get me up to escape velocity, I'd never get off the couch and out of the house after work ever. Which frankly makes me inclined to, you know, never retire. Now that I've had a couple weeks out of the pressure cooker, I know that I just need the half hour and then I'm good to get up and, like, actually cook dinner.

I don't think I will cook dinner every night after derby, though. Too many dishes. I think I'll keep making my spacefood, I'll decompress and eat my spacefood and then get dressed for a nice 8:00 workout—not too early, and not too late.

That's not here yet, though. I mean, I still like derby; it's still a fun thing to fill my time with. And also it's hella cheap. Fifty bucks a month for three practices a week, twelve practices a month, that's like $4 per practice, so ridiculous. I guess I have to count in what my time is worth for volunteer hours and such, say, $25/hr, times ten volunteer etc. hours per month, so $250 plus the $50 is $300 divided by twelve, okay, $25 per practice; that's still pretty good. I mean, it's way less than I charge.

Not that I've been working out over this break, mostly I've been catching up with errands. I bought unholey jeans, finally and, this never happens, I got them on sale. $10 for one pair and $30 for the other, so $40 for two pairs of jeans! Though I've been demoted to demi curve, bah.