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Thursday, November 8, 2012

Parent's Weekend!

The Parentals visited me last weekend! Beyond taking my mother to her first college football game (where the Gophers lost, par usual...) and exploring the Mall of America (where I got some new swag) we ate A TON of food. By the time my parents left, I was filled TO THE RIM! Here are just a few of the places we went!
The Imperial Room 
Where: 417 1st Ave. N in the one and only Downtown Minneapolis.
What: An after-work type of bar. Would be a great place to go during happy hour after work...if I had a job and I was actually over 21. They had a 1/2 off app and drinks deal during happy hour on Thursdays & Fridays, and a gaggle of work people were there to munch. It seemed like a great place to relax after work, or to go after you travel 6 hours to visit your amazing daughter at college.
FOOD: Of the many things that were eaten at this meal, there were a few that were reasons to go back. The first, one of our appetizers-Breaded Mushrooms. Besides the fact that the breaded mushrooms alone were delicious and perfectly breaded, the home-made horseradish sauce was GREAT! The Mom ate it by itself once the breaded mushrooms were gone. For my main meal, I had a veggie filled flat bread pizza. It was cheesy and every bite was full of vegetables. Lastly, I had apple crisp with vanilla ice cream. My dad saw the large plate and told me to just eat the ice cream and take the rest home, because he didn't think I could finish it. I took that as a personal challenge and ate the entire dessert. YUM. Showed him!

Bryant Lake Bowl
Where: 810 West Lake Street. Uptown Minneapolis(My favorite part of Minneapolis!)
What: The Parentals saw this place on the food network's tv show, Diners, Drive-Ins, & Dives and HAD to   check it out. It is a bowling alley, theater, and restaurant. The Parentals went there while I was in class on Friday, and loved it show much that we went again after the gopher game. It almost defines what a "hole-in-the-wall" type restaurant is. It has tiny tables and a great, small-time feel. The menu is some-what small, but the deliciousness is BIG! The meat is grass-fed and the vegetables are such are all local. It was definitely a "hipster hangout" and I LIKED IT.
FOOD: The Dad, my Roomie, and I all had vegetarian chilli. It was the most perfect after game meal. It was full of beans and was perfectly spicy. It was served with a heaping pile of cheese on top and was so delicious  that I would take a bus just to get the chilli to go and leave. I had my chilli with a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich. I want it right now. It was such a fantastic meal. YUM!


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Boo! Cake

Happy Halloween! Goombah and I made a cake to celebrate the fabulous season. Originally , the plan was to make a dark-chocolate chip and pumpkin spice cake with cream cheese frosting....which I will make someday because that sounds delicious. BUT we  had no ride to the grocery store, and didn't feel like taking a trip to Downtown Minneapolis to Target to get cooking supplies. We settled for CVS and came up with an on-the-spot recipe to celebrate the spooky holiday.


BOO! Cake. 
So easy, a child could do it.
....or two college students.

WHAT WE FOUND AT CVS!
(aka ingredients)
1 box chocolate cake mix.
1 bag pumpkin-spice Hershey's Kisses
3 Eggs (Or whatever it says on the box)
1 cup applesauce
(because we were too cheap to purchase vegetable oil and I had some in my cabinet.
PLUS its healthier than vegetable oil. Its a Win-Win situation)
Vanilla Frosting 
Candy Corn 

TO MAKE IT:
Preheat oven to what it says on the box (350 degrees probably)
1. Make the box cake mix. Follow the directions on the box. Substitute a cup of applesauce for vegetable oil. Put the made-up cake mix into a greased 9x11 cake pan.
2. If you want to be FANCY, like Goombah and I, you can double-boiler melt the kisses. (I think that is what it is called, its pictured over there-->) But you could probably just break the kisses into pieces and mix it in the cake mix. FUN FACT: In case you didn't already figure it out, you are going to have to unwrap all the kisses. Unless you really like the taste of the wrapping...no judgement.
3. If you fancy double-boiled the chocolate, marble it into the cake mix. As in plop it on top of the mix, and then swirl it around with a knife. Its pretty simple, I think.
4. BAKE IT. According to the box. It should be around 35 minutes I believe.
<---it should look awesome like this after you bake it. SO PRETTY!
6. Frost it. Decorate with candy corn.
7. EAT IT UP! Share the holiday spirit with your friends.

8. Have the happiest of  Halloweens :)

Monday, October 8, 2012

Six Months!

Last week Thursday I celebrated my half-way point in my year of veggie-hood. So far, I am still undecided on whether or not my veggie ways will conclude at the end of the year or not. Part of me really likes being a vegetarian, because I feel like it forces me to make healthier choices, like eating more veggies and fruit. The other part of me, really hates the restrictiveness of a vegetarian diet. I LOVE trying new things and too many times I have been disappointed by repeating another meal at a restaurant or have had to make myself a veggie sandwich at the dining center in my res. hall. I really do not crave meat anymore, but I find myself craving meals that have had meat in them. For example, I miss chicken noodle soup. It is completely possible for me to make myself a vegetarian knock-off of chicken noodle soup, and I am sure if I looked hard enough, I could probably find one as well. But why should eating healthy be this hard?
ANYWAYS! to celebrate my 6 months of veggies, I made a scrumptious veggie-casserole, a knock-off of one my mom had made for me growing up at home!

VEGETARIAN CASSEROLE 
Serves 8. (or four with leftovers for the weekend!)

Ingredients:
1/2 box of whole wheat rotini noodles
1/2 bag frozen peas
1 can of your fav. pasta sauce
 (or just condensed tomato soup)
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped onions 
(which I didn't have but would have liked)
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
[as far as the chopped veggies go, I really just eye-balled it]
3/4 small bag of Parmesan or Mozzarella Shredded Cheese
(I used a mixture of the two)
2 slices of bread, crumbed.
(I used the butts[ends] of the bread, because they make lousy toast.)

the sneaky vegetarian ingredient:
1 bag Morning Star "ground beef"

HOW TO MAKE YOUR STOMACH SMILE:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
1. Cook the noodles. I hope you know how. Drain them, put them in a large mixing bowl.
2. Saute celery, peppers, and onions (what my mom refers to as the holy trio) in a large frying pan.
3. Add the "ground beef" to the sauteing veggies. Mix until the "beef" is no longer frozen. This is mainly just to mix the flavors of the sauteing veggies with the "beef".
4. Add the sauteed mixture into the mixing bowl with the noodles. 
5. Add the can of sauce to the mixing bowl, fold into the delightful mixture until everything is covered in sauce.
6. Add most of the 3/4 bag of cheese to the mixture, but not all! Leave some for the crusty top!
7. Grease a casserole dish (or in my case, a 9"-11" cake pan.)
8. Pour the casserole mixture into the pan. Spread Evenly.
9. Mix the bread crumbs with the leftover cheese, sprinkle on top of the casserole. 
10. Put tinfoil on top of the pan, making sure the casserole doesn't touch the tin foil. This will make sure your crusty topping doesn't get burnt while your casserole insides are baking.
10. Cook for approx. 35 minutes. Take the tin foil off and cook for another 10 minutes.
11. Try your best to let the casserole cool a bit, or get a burnt tongue. 
12. EAT IT ALL UP! It also makes yummy leftovers.

I enjoyed this meal with my lovely roomie, Goombah, and Jay. Goombah and Jay brought instant mash-potatoes and pudding. We had quite a lovely home-made(ish) meal and enjoyed an episode of Glee. It was a spectacular conclusion to my first 6 months of veggieness. Six more to go until the year is up. My continuance of these veggie ways after this year is still in question! 

Monday, October 1, 2012

So Busy! AH!

I realized I haven't blogged in a few days, or maybe even in the last month. And I realized it was about time for a veggie-update. I haven't done any amazing awesome baking/cooking lately. A few weeks ago I repeated the banana bread recipe but with chocolate cake mix in place of vanilla. It was delish! The frozen bananas worked out fine, the only thing that was a little disturbing was how dark the peel of the banana was. It was a very dark brown and I was a bit nervous the bananas would be gross as well. Thankfully the bananas were kept perfectly over-ripe in the freezer.
Also, I went on an advegture to the Mill City Farmers Market  this past Saturday with Goombah and one of our fab. friends, G.R. It was a GREAT DAY. First off, on our walk to the market, we merged with the Big Gay Race. The race was part of the Minnesotans United for All Familes and the VOTE NO campaign for Minnesota gov. ban on same-sex marriages. We joined in the fun and cheered on the runners, giving high-five's to those who passed by (side note: No one actually physically high-fived me because they kept missing my hand. True story. So sad). When we made out way out of the 6,000 people crowd, we headed to the farmers market. Goombah and friend got breakfast, which I tasted, except for G.R.'s because it was a meaty breakfast sandwhich. I got some absolutely divine sunflower seed multi-grain bread, a bag of honeycrisp apples, and a few green peppers. Honestly one of the best day's I have had in a long, long while. It was scrumptious, I am devouring the bread, and apples. And will be using the peppers in my 6-months-of-veggieness feast this Thursday. Don't worry, I will make a solid effort to blog about my meal, because I plan on it being a veggielicious event.
ON a vegetarian related note, I am really digging being a vegetarian, and I am thinking about sticking with it beyond this year. ALSO, my goals for October include being optimistic about life and not eating cookies. (I may or may not have had at least 30 cookies last week. I wish that was an over-exaggeration, but it's not. I have a problem. It will be solved this month. NO COOKIES FOR ME.) Hopefully I accomplish these goals. I have faith in myself! WOOT!
ALSO! My main reason for not blogging has been that for one of my classes I am doing a blog about the news, so blogging has become homework, so finding the time to do this blog has been a struggle. I will find time readers, I will find time! If you are interested in looking at my other blog, look HERE. I am not 100% sure you can see it if you aren't a UMN student. But, I hope you can! :) SHINE ON!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

BoyTalk & Banana Muffs


The first week of full classes has come to a close and  I have started my weekend off with a successful girls night in. It all began with a bushel of over-ripe Bananas & the world's easiest banana chocolate chip muffin recipe...


The Goods:
4 overripe bananas
(if you have over-ripe bananas, 
and no time to bake you can
freeze them and bake later!)
2 eggs
1 cup chocolate chips
1 box yellow cake mix
Oven @ 350 degrees.

IT'S THIS EASY:
1. Mix everything together. Mushing the bananas as you mix 
2. Grease muffin tin or use paper cupcake linings.
(We put butter on a paper towel and spread it around because we are college students and that's how we make it work.)
3. Bake for 15-18 minutes.
4. EAT EM'. NUMNUMNUM!
(Caution: You should probably wait until they are cooled a bit, as to not burn your tongue.)

THINGS WORTH MENTIONING:
I made these delicious muffins with Goombah and her roommate, J. We too a stroll to the nearby CVS to get all the supplies needed. Here's where our silliness becomes overwhelming. While at the front desk of the res. hall checking out the muffin tin, my friends begin casually engaging in a flirtatious conversation with the front desk attendant. We make our way back to my apartment, and decided to begin the muff making process. To our own avail, we realized we had no large mixing bowl. Back to the front desk it was and as we wondered away from the front desk I called out, "Hopefully we won't be back." To which he replied, "Unless its with a muffin." (Side Note: We never brought him a muffin, Ops.)
We then started on our muffin making advegture. When it was time to add the chocolate chips, J ceremoniously lifted the entire bag of chocolate chips and dumped it into the bowl. Goombah and I immediately took action, grabbing the non-battered chips and setting them aside. J just laughed and said, "It is suppose to be a girls night! We need our chocolate!" (Another Side Note: We had Ben&Jerry's ice cream during the night as well, I enjoyed the Fro-Yo version of Half-Baked. My favorite.) Once we completed our muffin creation we ate and talked about boys. A typical, hilariously delicious girls night!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

BAAA-nana Chips

Saw a recipe for Banana Chips on Pinterest....

My Attempt:

Ingredients:
2 Bananas.
Lemon Juice.

TO DO:

Slice the Banana.
Dip In lemon Juice.
Bake @ 200 degrees for 2 hours, then flip.
 Bake for 2 more hours.

It seems easy, LIES.
Here's what happened:

It all seemed easy, too easy. I should have known that wouldn't be the case. First of all, dipping each banana slice in lemon juice was tedious and took at least a 1/2 hour. Next, flipping the slices took forever. I couldn't keep track of which slices I had flipped, and which still needed to be turned over. At first flip, I knew I had cut the chips too small, they were potato chip thin. I was so disappointed. When the entire four hours had concluded, I spent another hour cleaning the leftovers of banana slices off of the cookie sheet. And the chips aren't event that good. They are still slightly soggy, and not very chip like. They taste like little pieces of banana fruit leather to me. Its not a bad taste or texture. I will, of course, still devour them. Its just not what I was hoping for when I began making the chips. Next time I will just buy banana chips!




Friday, August 31, 2012

It Has Begun

The near restless nights, no time to run, junk food, dining hall buffets, and the crazy life of a res. hall CA have all begun. I am running off coffee and free food. That's right, free, one word college students cannot wait to hear. But none-the-less I am still exhausted. Last night was my first night on Duty. Only one phone call, announcing to meet the other CA on duty in the lobby, woke me up from my slumber but, unfortunately, it was enough to make me toss and turn all night long. This  morning the normally somewhat peaceful sound of my alarm clock made me rush for the duty phone. I thought for sure another incident had occurred. To my avail, it had not, and my morning has thus begun. Today we feed the first-year-students lunch in the Great Hall. That means another day of half-asleep smiles and enthusiasm. I can preserver on, I will power through. But in the back of my mind I will be awaiting the sweet reunion between my bed and I. For now, my drama-filled writing and I are OUT.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Vegducation!



This week was full of CA duties. I had to make a few bulletin boards, and door decs, and I had to learn all about my CA position. And I am glad this week is over! 
One exciting moment I had this week was making a board that dealt with Health & Wellness. Of course I used my new found veggie-ways to inspire my board! Along the way, I also learned a lot about veggie-dom. Did you know that choosing a vegetarian diet can lengthen your life by 13 years. You are also less likely to suffer from diseases like heart diseases, some cancers, and food-borne illness like salmonella or mad cow. Being a vegetarian also prevents the pollution of various streams and rivers due to animal waste runoff. AND its good for your wallet too! An average American spends 10% of their food cost on meat, so cutting meat from your diet can increase your bank account by 4000$ a year! (all this info is from HERE)That's about sixth of my tuition! I learned a lot, and realized that I have changed since my change into veggie world. I feel that I have a more sustained energy throughout the day, and I am having an easier time maintaining a good weight. Plus, in general, I feel amazing. How can you not when you end up eating the recommend amount of veggies for a day? It feels fantastic. I would suggest everyone give it a try, at least for a week. Who knows, you could love it as much as I do, and it would benefit you in so many ways!

ALSO. I have started a love affair with Einstein Bro's Bagel Sandwiches. They are freaking fantastic. On one day  this week (due to my crazy days I have no idea what day it was) I had a whole grain bagel thin egg-white sandwich with spinach, Swiss cheese, and the one and only asparagus. If I haven't said so already, I enjoy asparagus. I could devour it daily. Its just the best flavor and crunch and its so good for you. I want some now. Yum. On Friday, I had a Veg Out sandwich on a bagel thin (which is like the love child of a whole grain bread and a bagel, and its less calories than either and as delicious as both). My Veg Out sandwich was so refreshing and filling at the same time. It had some kind of spicy hummus, and alfalfa sprouts (which I haven't had in a while due to the California Sprout Recall) It also had the veggies you would assume to be on a veg sandwich, tomato, cucumber, lettuce. There may have been others but I was so famished, and the sandwich was such a hunger-crusher that I didn't take the time to look at it, I just ate it. Bite, after bite, after bite. Can't wait until my next date with Einstein's!

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Freaky Fast Veggies

In the last week, CA training has begun to stuff me with more food than I have been used to eating. In the past week. I've had fast food twice. That never happens! I don't even remember the last time last had fast food before this week! My first fast food experience was at Qdoba the day before training. If you've ever had a Qdoba burrito, you know its the size of a new born baby. My one grilled veggie burrito lasted me three days. [RANT ALERT:] I don't know why all places have such large portions. We have such a problem with obesity in this country, you think someone would realize that its portion control. One burrito at Qdoba is at least 600 calories, and some can get over 1000. That is half the calories you need for the day. Its not only Qdoba. SO many places have out of control portion sizes. You do not need a heaping pile of french fries with every meal. You do not need a serving size plate of pasta. COME ON. [conclusion of rant] Besides the fact that my burrito was enough food for a trio, it was really delicious. I found out that Qdoba has whole wheat tortillas. YUM! I would recommend asking for it, its healthy and delicious. Also, the service at Qdoba was excellent. The man making my burrito was extremely attentive and friendly. If I wasn't a broke student with nothing but a Qdoba gift card, I would've given him a tip!
The other fast food experience I have had here at the University, was Jimmy Johns today. I got the vegetarian #6 on wheat bread. (I like wheat, if you haven't noticed) I got my sub without mayo or avocado. I really just don't like those two things, for whatever reason avocado makes my stomach feel funny, and mayo is just kind of gross. My sandwich was scrumptious, but I only ate half of the sandwich and I was feeling very full. I think it was just the wheat bread. It fills you up so fast, which is a good thing! Some my fellow CAs got lettuce wraps, which would have been a lighter, refreshing meal. I might try that next time I order JJs! I didn't even get a chance to begin to eat the Jimmy John's Chips. But that's OK, I added them to my cupboard for a later day. You never know when you are going to need a snack.

Friday, August 17, 2012

The First Sushi Advegture


One of the pieces of art available at the
Floating World's Website!
Ok, so I have been meaning to blog about this experience for the past few days since I moved in, but with unpacking and CA training, I've been a tad bit busier than I anticipated. But, without further a due, my first advegture with sushi....

My first meal in Minnesota (YAY!) was the most advegturous meal I've had in quite a while. The Dad and I went to Floating World Cafe on Lake Street in Minneapolis. It was a sushi place first and for most, and I have to admit, I was a bit nervous to try vegetarian sushi. I wasn't really sure what it would entail. Am I going to be eating weird sea plants? I was concerned. As we entered, my eyes immediately flew to the walls, which where covered in unique paintings. On further inspection, I read that the pictures were all created with in the walls of the restaurant, as it served as a sushi restaurant/art studio. Needless to say, it was a peaceful ambiance to begin my first veggie-sushi experience. Once I peeled my eyes from the paintings on the walls, I captured my first look at the menu and my inner veggie-worries was immediately silenced. There were multiple veggie friendly options, such as veggie tempura, shiitake broth, and a few vegetarian sushi options, none of which included weird sea plants that I'd never heard of before. I settled on the vegetable sushi lunch which came with a bowl of the shiitake broth, and the chefs pic of vegetables.
This is a pinyin
(picture from Wikipedia)
The first thing brought to the table was the shiitake broth. I have to admit, its been a while since I've had a eat-in Asian cuisine experience. When I saw the soup spoon, followed by the spoon rest, I got a bit confused. For those of you who are now as confused as I was then, a Chinese soup spoon (or what I believe is called a pinyin) is a flat bottomed spoon that is most commonly made from ceramic or porcelain. One the chunks of meat (or in my case shiitake pieces) are eaten from the soup, the soup rest serves as a place for your spoon while you begin to drink the soup directly from the bowl. I didn't use my spoon for long, after my first spoonful, I went straight to slurping it from the bowl. It was delicious. It was just this simple delicate Chinese flavor that is almost impossible to really describe in enough detail so that you could understand the wonderfulness happening on your palate. I would just suggest that if you see it on the menu, you eat it, you will not regret it. I want some now. I wonder if its sold in cans?.....

Anyways! The next thing to make it's way to the table was the Vegetable Sushi. I really wish I would have a picture, because the sushi chef made my plate beautiful. It was a perfect arrangement of colors and was honestly a plate of art. To be frank, at first bite I was a bit underwhelmed. After the broth and the presentation of the sushi, I was expecting a much more advegturous taste.  It was mainly different vegetables seaweed wrapped onto a roll of sticky rice. I was expecting  more spices and flavors, but it was fairly bland. I tried to add a kick to my meal with some wasabi. This was a tragic mistake. I put a pencil-eraser sized chunk of wasabi paste on my chopsticks, which was much more than suffice. My esophagus was crying in agony, my tongue was a raging flame inside my mouth. On a positive note, my sinus cleared up nicely, I didn't sniffle once in the next few days.
Aside from the wasabi incident, The meal was relatively enjoyable. I deem my first vegetable sushi experience a success, and I wouldn't stray away from going to another sushi place further along in my veggie-filled year, though I plan on staying far, far away from wasabi for a while.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Last Taste of Summer

As I prepare to leave my hometown, Waukesha, and my home state of Wisconsin, I have had a few last minute wonderful summer adventures. They began this past Friday.
To preface the first adventure, I'll have to explain one of my duties as a CA in a residential hall at UMN. I have to make door decs. If you have recently spent any time in a residential hall, you would see the names of the residents decoratively placed upon their room doors. One of my duties is to create the decorative door flourishes for the residents I will be looking after in the next year-a total of 75 people. I also have to make another 19 door decorations for my fellow staff members. If you do the math-or if your math handicapped like me and used a calculator-that is a grand total of 84 door decs. Thinking of a way to display the names of the 84 co-ed residents was fairly challenging. I was searching for ideas on what to do when the lovely Goombah said, "Why don't you just write their names on paint samples?"
 At first I was a bit against this idea, but the more she suggested it, the more I liked the idea. I finally decided the enhanced paint samples would be the perfect door dec for my floor. Wonderful. "But wait," I said to Goombah, "I leave for school in four days. What are we going to do, go to Home Depot and casually grab 84 door decs." And this, my friends, is where the adventure begins.
We began at a Home Depot on one side of town. As we entered we found it difficult to look like we actually belonged there. Lets be honest, what the heck can two college students actually afford at Home Depot? A bunch of free paint samples, maybe a pack of gum. That is just about it. I could tell the Home Depot employees were on to us.
 "Goombah, maybe we should, I don't know, look around a bit?" We started walking casually through the power tools isle. Great idea, right? Of all isles to walk down, this is the one where we look the least bit suspicious.
We slowly meandered back to the paint supplies area, and found ourselves in front of a wall of samples. "If we both grab about ten or eleven, then if we go to four different places we will have enough!" Goombah suggested.
We divided the wall in half, as to not grab the same colors, and began our paint sample snatching. Once we had collected our goal amount, we nodded in approval of our paint sample seizing abilities. As we turned I saw them. Two ten-year-old(ish) girls with their mother. "There on to us." I whispered to Goombah. The Mother laughed as she realized we knew that she knew, and Goombah and I ducked out of the paint area and out the Home Depot doors.
The same routine continued until we got to Menards, our fourth and final paint sample destination. Menards paint samples were not as out in the open as the previous places. As we began grabbing samples I refrained from counting how many I had grabbed, suddenly I had a large handful of paint samples. A whopping 43. I had exceeded the goal amount. "Uhm, in case I make a mistake?" Goombah and I laughed and headed out Menards' doors.
On a less adventurous, but more advegturous note, The Fam and I went out to dinner on Saturday night for The Rents 27th wedding anniversary. (Congrats to The Mom&Dad!) We went down the street from The Dads work, a grand little place called The Packing House. The Dad had looked up the menu in advance and saw that there were two vegetarian options, not a grand selection, but a selection none-the-less. We started with an appetizer. A sampling of fried eggplant, mozzarella sticks, fried onion strings, and bacon wrapped water chestnuts (which I obviously did not eat.) But the fried eggplant was surprisingly the best part of the meal! It was splendid. It was so good that I would honestly recommend going there just to get them. I then got a plate of vegetable alfredo. Although it was delicious, I found myself disappointed because the waitress had stated that asparagus would be part of the dish, but my plate was asparagus-less. And it would've been just that much greater with a few spears of asparagus. What a shame! Overall though, it was a great dinner and a fantastic final Wisconsin restaurant meal!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Kohlrabi...What?

I just realized today that I should have celebrated my 3 months of veggiedom last five days ago! How  exciting. It has gone by so crazy fast. I feel like I blinked and it was over! I will be heading back to Minneapolis next week Tuesday! I am currently in the midst of packing, and getting everything ready to go. Including myself. Two days ago I got my hair cut, nothing anyone would notice, just a nice trim. I love the way it feels to have just cut healthy hair! Today, as in about twenty minutes ago, I dyed my hair medium golden blonde. I am still awaiting my hair to dry to see the results, but it wasn't too crazy of a change, so I am sure it will look good. I love being blonde. I love to show up the stereotype and be a blonde girl with a good head on my shoulders. Dumb Blonde? Not this girl!
With more veggie news, Today I attempted to create a healthy mid day snack. I cut kohlrabi, (its called the German Turnip. Its a type of cabbage. It tastes kind of like the stem part broccoli, but has a crunch similar to cucumbers. The Grandparents grow them in their garden. The Grandma usually cooks them up in soups.) I cut it like a potato chip and sprinkled seasoning salt on top of make-shift, healthy chips. It sounded really delicious, but I took a bite and couldn't take another. I added WAY to much seasoning salt, it tasted disgusting. Ops! I decided to eat cool ranch Doritos and Tazo Green Tea instead, less healthy, more yummy. Oh well!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Technology Fail

Ever since I got my first cell phone, way back in 2007, I have been a victim to sudden phone damaging tragedies. I've seen my phone suicide jump from my pocket into the toilet. I've seen my phone free fall from my palm, bouncing off the concrete. Every phone I have ever used has been terminated from its position as my phone because of such events. This summer, my newest phone was a victim to the humidity, and experienced water damage. My back up phone then kamikaze-d into the pavement. I have been using various phones throughout the summer attempting to fill the void my newest phone left open. The Dad ordered a new(ish) phone for me online. Although it is a bit old-school, it has a keyboard. Which is a plus. Although this seems to have nothing at all to do with my veggie-ways, it does! Sort-of. 
Let me explain. I have been taking pictures of most everything I eat in case I decided to blog about it. Yesterday, I made Chick'n Fried Rice. I took various photos, But because of the recent phone switch, I failed to e-mail the pictures to myself. 
So I will try to paint the picture of the fried rice, so you can imagine how scrumptious it looked. It started with vegetable oil and onions in a frying pan. A perfect simmering sound filled the air, along with the pleasant aroma of a meal starting to take form. I then added frozen peas and corn, its frosted edges sizzling on the frying pan. Next were the fresh veggies, chopped mushrooms and broccoli. I stirred the colorful blend of veggie-goodness as I added an egg. Its yellow fluff added a perfect flavor and texture. As well as the ever important protein. I then started to fry the Chick'n. As it turned a golden brown, I piled the rice in with the veggies. mixing it with soy sauce, watching it brown slightly. I chopped the Chick'n and my veggie meal was complete. A perfect mix of all colors. A great veggielicious meal. 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Wisco-Veggie-Fair

Yesterday was the opening day of the Wisconsin State Fair, and I was there! It had been years since I took the adventure to the State Fair. When I was younger The Fam lived in West Allis and The Mom used to drag me along in a red wagon the few blocks down to the State Fair Grounds. I traveled to the fair again this year with The Mom but not only to attend the fair, but also to help Hunger Task Force collect non-perishable food items for reduced admission to the fair. Although we received a lot of donated items for the local food pantries, the head-haunchos said it was a significantly smaller amount than previous years. Unfortunately, because of the teen riots from 2011, it seemed people were fearful to come to the fair, and those under 18 were not allowed to enter without an adult after 5. It is such a shame that a few hooligans had to ruin it for so many people! Still, it was great to give a helping hand and donate our time to a good cause!

After we volunteered, we wandered into the fair searching for a vegetarian friendly dinner. We were on a mission for a non-deep friend veggie meal. It was near impossible. We got side tracked a bit, and got some roasted mixed nuts. Which are always delicious and somewhat nutritious, they have some protein in them! We then found the A Wok Around the Park stand which had a eclectic mix of Asian choices. I had the Spicy Veggie Singapore Noodles, and The Mom had Tikiayki Bourbon Chicken. My meal had a bit of a curry flavor, and a few peppers mixed in with Indian style noodles. Both The Mom found our meals a little underwhelming, but it still quietened our rumbling stomachs. We ventured through the fair a bit more, and got ice cream cones from Cedar Crest. I devoured Elephant Tracks, and The Mom got some rendition of a coffee/toffee ice cream. Overall it was a great day at the State Fair, but I wouldn't recommend going there looking for a somewhat healthy vegetarian meal.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

To Grandmother's House We Go

This past Sunday The Fam. and I took a trip over the highway and through the woods to The Grandparents house. Where I was delighted to find a Grandma made lunch for The Fam and I that included vegetarian options for me! YIPEE! While my carnivorous family devoured steak (I'm pretty sure The Mom's fairly rare stake still had a pulse) I enjoyed a veggie burger with vegetable soup. The veggie burger was a good protein source, but the soup was fantastic. The Grandparents have a large garden where they grow kohlrabi, corn, potatoes, carrots, basil, green beans, cabbage, and many other wonderfully fresh vegetables as well as raspberries. The soup was filled with these superbly fresh veggies and prepared with the German spaetzle noodles on the side. I want to find a way to can soup so that I can have some of this saved up wonderfully fresh and delicious soup when I get home-sick away at college. I had The Grandma pack up some of the soup and spaetzle and had  a small cup of soup for lunch today. YUM!
Another great thing about Grandma's in general, is how good they are at making desserts! The Grandma had prepared zucchini bread with cream cheese frosting and a cool-whip-wafer-berry tart. What is a cool-whip-wafer-berry-tart? Only the most simply delicious of The Grandma's wonderful desserts. She crumbles vanilla wafers (The ones that come in packaged with chocolate and strawberry and are slightly orange colored) on the bottom of a pan and flattens them so that they become the crust. She then adds a thick layer of fresh raspberries, a thick layer of coolwhip, and another thinner layer of raspberries and a crumbling of vanilla wafers lay gently a-top. She also added a sprinkling of blueberries on the top to make a simple and light summer dessert. Yay for Grandmas!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Go USA! Cupcakes

Inspired by cheering on my favorite team in the 2012 London Olympics, (Team USA, duh.) I decided to make red, white and blue cupcakes for my friends as a tailgating dessert. Because nothing is better than a delicious cupcake before you take the mile hike up to your nosebleed cheap seats! Are those ants playing down there? I don't know but I am sure glad I ate a few cupcakes and veggieburgers before I got up here, it would be a long hike to the concession stand!





GO USA! Cupcakes


The Goods:

1 box white cupcakes
10-15 Strawberries (diced)
1 & 1/2 cup blueberries





The Super-Easy-Yummy&Delicous-Vanilla Frosting:

1 package vanilla pudding
1 container cool whip (thawed)
1 cup cold milk



TO DO:

1. Make cake mix according to box.You can do it. I believe in you. Don't forget to preheat the oven to 350!
2. Add the berries. I didn't really count out how much I put in. Just eyeball it until it looks like you have a good mix of berries to make it really red, white and blue.
3. Bake according to box. My oven took 22 minutes, which was odd because it usually takes a shorter amount of time, but I am thinking the extra moisture of the berries extended the time a bit.
4. While your cupcakes are cooling, start preparing the frosting
5. How do you make the frosting? I'll tell you! You beat the cold milk with the package of pudding for 2 minutes, then fold in the cool whip. 
7. Leave the frosting in your fridge for an hour. Go watch the Olympics while you wait. This is a completely necessary step. Do not skip it.
8. Spread the frosting all up on them cupcakes. Because its a lighter frosting, I added a bit more than I usually do. 
9. If you'd like you can use the extra blueberries and strawberries as a garnish. I made adorable little flowers on a few of my cupcakes. It was a cute touch, if I do say so myself.
10. FEAST. They are very moist cupcakes, and because of the cool-whip frosting and berries, they are very light. So its totally fine if you eat 10 of them in one sitting. The berries make them good for you, right?

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Sending My Love


Instead of my normal advegture blogging, today I’d like to use this platform to reflect on the recent tragedy in Aurora, Colorado. My heart truly goes out to all those affected by the horrible event. While watching The Today Show in the last two days, I couldn’t help but feel the heartbreak along with so much of the nation.
 It is times like this that we should take time remember how truly united we are not only as the peoples of the United States of America, but also as an entire globe of human beings. We are so alike despite all the physical difference in the fact that we are human. All though we deal with pain in all sorts of ways, it is impossible not to feel a sense of hurt after such a horrible tragedy.
Although it is difficult not to be afraid, impossible not to have a sense of worry, it is important that we remain brave. Life will, and must, go on. Instead of becoming fearful of living, we must reflect after tragedies such as this, that show us just how fragile our lives are. We hear so often to live everyday as though it is your last, yet too many times we forget the honesty in that statement.
After watching the tragedy unfold, I’ve come to realize I don’t appreciate the ones I love enough. So, from now on, I will try to, in general, be a better person. A tragedy such as this can and should teach us a valuable life lesson. It has given me an enlightened sense of love for the people in my life.
I’d like to take the time to say thank you to all those who are a part of my life. To The Mom & Dad, who have supported and believed in me since the day I was born. To my extended family who are always a delight to see and who I wish I could see more often. To those who watch over me and my family from heaven, who I think about and miss every day. To Goombah, who has been so much more than my best friend, especially over the past year. To all the friends who I’ve come to know at Minnesota, who I am so excited to get to know better in the years to come. To my friends from home, even those who have become distant and aren’t a significant part of the present time, but will always have a place in my heart and whose memories will always bring a smile to my face. Thank you.

Again, I send my love to all those affected by the Aurora tragedy. As George W. Bush said in his eulogy for the space shuttle Colombia’s Astronauts, “The sorrow is lonely; but you are not alone.”

Thursday, July 19, 2012

No Eggs? No Problem!

I have been having some wicked dreams the last few weeks. Everything from driving to the ocean (which is a long way from Wisconsin), to learning how to create greeting cards, to the peculiar dream I had last night. I was at an airport on my way to the East Coast. I am not sure where I was going, all I saw was a map with the plane shown heading that general direction. In said dream, I decided I was hungry and traveled through the airport in search for food. I stumbled upon a little fro-yo/cafe place. They had a giant selection of ice creams, coffees, and baked goods. I decided on a psychedelic rainbow fro-yo. When the cashier rang me up, she charged me for two muffins as well. She couldn't get the muffins to drop off of the payment, so I decided I was hungry and told her to bring me a apple-cinnamon muffin and a surprise muffin. The apple cinnamon muffin was so freaking delicious that I woke up wishing it was real, and I still have no idea what that surprise muffin was, because I woke up craving the muffin I was munching on in my dream. With my muffin-craving pushing me through the day, I decided that I wanted to bake when I got home from class. I searched through the fridge, and saw that we did not have eggs. I just about broke down in tears, and then I realized, HECK, vegans make no-egg baking goods all the time. And searched the internet until I stumbled upon THIS! Which I slightly modified and turned into Yummy Vegan Cookies!

Yummy Vegan Cookies
(makes two dozen)

I sadly, do not have a picture 
because my phone isn't working.
and neither is my camera.
or my webcam.

The Goods:
2 cups whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon 
3/4 cup raw sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil 
1/2 vanilla almond milk

To Do:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix all the ingredients together. I used a fork followed by smushing it together with my clean hands. It worked out pretty well. And you don't even have to worry about eating the raw cookie dough because you can't get salmonella! SCORE.
3. If you like, you can add chocolate chips, or nuts, or whatever you fancy. I think its pretty good plain. But I added chocolate sprinkles to a few of them, because I simply wanted some chocolate.
4. Place a tablespoon of cookie rolled into a ball a few inches away from each other on a baking sheet. You know the drill, I am assuming you've made cookies before.
5. Bake for 9-12 minutes. My oven took 12. Your oven may take 15. I don't know your life.
6. Eat them. Eat them all. Refuse to share. 

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Dark as Night!

Today, Goombah and I went on a search for Henna. We went to the Namaste Plaza (an Indian grocery store in Brookfield, WI) and met the owner, Rita, who was delightful and extremely helpful. She told us that she had recently taken over the store, and was restocking everything, and the henna powder will be there on Friday. I am searching for a Indian vegetarian recipe so I can purchase more than just henna powder the next time Goombah and I return to her store! 
After our somewhat unsuccessful henna search, Goombah and I went to Panera. I was craving soup, and since I couldn't get my favorite-broccoli cheddar soup-because they use chicken stock, I got the vegetarian friendly black bean soup! I was so surprised by how truly black it is. The picture to the right proves I am not over exaggerating, it really was dark as night! I was expecting black beans in light colored veggie-stock. Nope. It was black beans through and through. It was very good, but it could use some Mexican spices to really play up the authentic Mexican flavor of the black beans. After our delicious lunch at Panera, we traveled across the parking lot to  Yo Mama!, a frozen yogurt shop. Frozen Yogurt can never be anything but superbly delicious. I love it. 
I then, decided to go for a night run. To preface, I usually avoid running at night at all cost. I get paranoid in the dark, I constantly think someone is going to jump out of bushes, or a passing car will kidnap me. Which isn't completely illogical. If you have ever read the book Room by Emma Donoghue, or Lovely Bones by Alive Sebold, you would probably understand my fear. So usually, I run in the morning or around dusk to avoid darkness of night, and the extreme heat during the summer days. But, because I slept in today, and had class during dusk, I made the choice of running at 9 pm, in the dark. This made me run very, very quickly. Don't get me wrong, it was a great workout. My heart was constantly racing and my legs were moving just as fast. I was constantly on guard. I cannot wait to get back to a relaxing morning run tomorrow. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Making My Own Rain!

This drought is killing the herbs The Mom and I planted this summer! They are drying out so fast it seems a waste to even try and water them. Hopefully it will start to rain soon so that I can continue to use the yummy fresh herbs while I am at home for the summer. I love using them to add a fresh, fun flavor to my veggie meals! It needs to rain!
Creating my rain!
Unfortunately, mother nature is holding out on the rain. It's been hot and dry for weeks! So when Goombah and some of our friends were inspired by the one-and-only Pinterest to do some crayon art, I had rainfall on the mind! When I was sitting in math class, they ran to JoAnne's to get canvas, and it was on sale! Score! They then bought crayons, but I decided to bring the old crayons The Mom has kept since my elementary school days. I would suggest buying new crayons, some of the old crayons melted in chunks, and some didn't melt at all.
I then decided to create my own rain scene, including a silhouette of a person with an umbrella with the words "You can turn of the sun, but I'm still gonna shine" (from the Jason Mraz song, The Remedy) I started by taping off where the words and the umbrella silhouette would go. I then unwrapped a mix of blue, purple, teal, and white crayons. I would advise unwrapping the crayons, they melt much faster! Next tip, put a strip of hot glue on the canvas and then set the crayon on top of that, don't try to put hot glue directly on the crayon, it will just melt the crayon and create a mess.
all of our crayon art!
 Once I had a few burnt finger tips and the hot gluing madness was over with, the fun part began. Blow drying the crayons to make them melt! Fun Fact: In case you didn't already know, trying to use multiple hair dryers at once is not advised, we did blow a fuse trying to do 3 at the same time. Bad idea. Stick to one, avoid going into your basement or garage or whatever other creepy place circuit breakers are always in to reengage your fuse. I would also suggest blow drying your creation outdoors or in a place that can get randomly splattered with melting crayons. The drips fly everywhere. 


After the melting was complete, I used a permanent marker to fill in my silhouette, then used puffy paint to outline the image. I then used glitter on the umbrella, the rain boots, and the words SUN and SHINE to put an emphasis on those objects. It ended up looking really great! I cannot wait to put it in my dorm!

I realize its hard to read-but again, it says, "you can turn of the SUN but i'm still gonna SHINE"

Monday, July 9, 2012

Straight Out Of Asia

Italian Pomodoro
I took a bite before I thought of
taking a picture. Couldn't resist.
 I'd like to being this post by talking about my new found love of a few Asian things. First of all, I have been drinking green tea like I am parched and sweet green tea is the only thing that can quench my thirst. I freaking love it. I searched through The Mom's tea stash, and found Lemongrass Green Tea by Good Earth. It is so delicious. Then,  Tazo Tea was on sale at the one-and-only Target. (Whats not to love about that place? ) The Mom picked up a few of their Organic Iced Green tea with spearmint and lemongrass. It is the freaking bomb. I cannot get enough of it. I, in fact, am drinking one as I am typing this blog. I want to drink it constantly. I wish I could get an IV drip of it into my mouth, in constant intervals. Obviously, I am a bit obsessed. I admit it. It's totally fine. 
Henna Vases
Anyways.... This burst of new found tea-love encouraged Goombah and I to go to The Steaming Cup where, despite my new green tea ways, we both got our usual Chai Teas and split a Italian Pomodoro- which sounds really fancy, but is actually a really simple sandwich with tomatoes, onions, pesto, and cheese on a tomato focaccia bun. YUM!
 While at the steaming cup, Goombah found a few temporary tattoos in her purse, which inspired a chat about henna. This sparked my inner crafting spirit and I rushed home to start a new craft. I took a plain old vase, and one of the Tazo tea bottles, and spiraled into a henna crafting heaven. I swirled and dotted and created Indian inspired henna designs all over them with puffy paint! I was so excited about my new Asian inspired moments that I just had to blog all about it! I Googled where to find actual henna, and I sense an adventure into a Indian grocery store with Goombah in my near future. Maybe I'll grab a veggie meal while I am there!

Friday, July 6, 2012

Sayonara Heat Wave!

Today is suppose to be the last day of this smothering heat wave. I am hoping the weather-men are correct because this week of extreme heat has been a week of extreme failures for me. To start, I spent 8 hours doing math homework on Monday, because my online assignment was due Monday night at midnight, and I had about a week of work to make up. I did it! And had another 2 hours and 45 minutes to spare. So it ended up not being a major fail, but I nearly had a breakdown in the midst of this math madness fiasco.
 Next fail, I was searching in the fridge for something to munch on, and found the fridge smelling fowl. I decided to reorganize the fridge in my search for whatever was causing the epic stench. I stumbled upon a package of opened veggie dogs that were covered in mold. As I held back my urge to vomit, I threw them out and took the garbage outside to avoid getting the entire kitchen smelling of moldy veggie dogs. Once again, not exactly a failure, but most definitely not a positive moment of my week.
To add to my list of almost failures, this morning I decided I would show the heat wave who is boss and make a green smoothie to cool off. I put a half package of frozen mixed berries, a handful of spinach, and a 1/2 glass of water into the blender. I let the blender roar for a few moments then took a spoonful to taste and found my drink disgustingly bitter and not quite cold enough, I decided to add a cup of ice to cool it more and a few squeezes of honey to sweeten the drink. As you can see by the picture, my smoothie ended up being purple-ish-red-ish brown instead of green, and the taste matched its rather unattractively bland color. I gulped it down, as not to waste the food I had put in it, but I won't be making a duplicate smoothie anytime soon. To end today's blog, I am letting out a big Hooray! for this heat wave being (hopefully) almost over, it will not be missed by me.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

I (think) I can!

I need to see more of this!!! 
With my two month anniversary of becoming a vegetarian only a day away, you'd think the last thing on my mind would be dropping my new found veggie ways. I don't know if its just due to my lack of sleep and the stress of class and work after day camp week, but I just have lost all motivation for sticking to veggies. I am trying my best to struggle through my time of doubt. It is just getting boring and I am getting sick of having the same things day after day. I may get a few more recipe books from the library to try and reignite my veggie loving spark. It doesn't help that so many restaurants aren't veggie-friendly. The other day The Fam and I went to dinner at Texas Roadhouse. On our way there, I knew there wouldn't be many options for me, as Texas  Roadhouse advertises its superior ribs and steak. I had no idea the only thing on the menu that would be meat-free would end up being the Country Veg Platter-where you pick 4 side options from the menu and its actually considered a meal. I ended up eating a Caesar Salad, carrots and broccoli, applesauce, a Sweet Potato, and about every delicious roll I could get my hands on. Although the rolls were divine, as always, the carrots and broccoli weren't cooked enough, the Caesar Salad was drenched in dressing. I just wanted to have a good meatless meal! Is it so difficult?! I never realized how difficult it would be to go out and eat a healthy veggie-filled meal. Too many times I find my self eating a bowl full of pasta or a family-size order of bread rolls, not exactly a well-rounded meal! I of course, will try my hardest not to quit anytime soon, but I better get some good veggie food soon or I am gonna jump off the veggie wagon. Ugh! I can do this! I think?

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Scouting for Veggies!

WOAH! This past week was a whirlwind of adventure and advegture and I am exhausted! I spent the week as an adult volunteer at the Girl Scout camp I have attended since I was nine years old! It was a great tenth year of camp, although it wasn't what I was expecting. Goombah and I knew all year we would be returning to the camp we love as adults, but we had no idea we would be the leaders of the boys dragged to camp. I was nervous. In total, Goombah and I were in charge of around 20 boys twelve and under throughout the week. Surprisingly, the week ended up being (mostly) fun and made me want to return again next year. I definitely need a year to recoup from the week though. After a day of camp in the middle of a heat wave, I spent the night either at work(At the Waukesha Public Library) or in class(College Algebra at UWW.). By Friday my only energy source left was the caffeine rushing through my system. 

Luckily, I thought ahead and spent Sunday preparing two delicious veggie lunch options. At work the previous week, I ventured into the vegetarian cookbook section and picked up Better Than Peanut Butter & Jelly by Marry Mattare & Wendy Muldawer that had great veggilicious lunch ideas for kids! I picked out Veggie Salad and Where's the Tuna? Salad. I will be posting Where's the Tuna? Salad once I remake it, it was good, but it needs something else before I share it with the world!



Veggie Salad
(Serves 6)


Ingredients:
1/2 red pepper-diced
1/2 green pepper-diced
1/2 onion-diced
1 cup broccoli in small florets
2 carrots-diced
1 tomato-diced
6 mushrooms-chopped
1/8 cup fresh cilantro
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1 can chickpeas- drained and rinsed
8 oz cooked macaroni (I used rotini)
1 tbls vinegar
3 tlbs low-fat plain yogurt (I used sour cream)
pepper to taste

Do'in It:
1. Combine all the veggies, herbs, chickpeas, and cooked pasta.
2. Drizzle oil and vinegar over ingredients. mix well.
3. Plop sour cream or yogurt and mix well again. (You can also put cottage cheese through the food processor and use that in stead of yogurt)
4. Add pepper to taste.
5. Refrigerate.
6. Pack in your lunch, or your veggie loving child's lunch.
7. Eat it at lunch. Love it. Refuse to share.




Friday, June 22, 2012

Chick'n (Kinda) Parmesan!


Chick'n (Kinda) Parmesan 
(because I used Mozzarella.)

Ingredients:
5 Gardein Crispy Chick'n Tenders
Pasta sauce
Mozzarella (Or Parmesan)
     
                               Makin' It
1. Start making the tenders according to the "conventional oven" instructions on the package. (You know, preheat the oven and all that madness)
2. With about 5 minutes left on the timer, take them out and put about a spoon-full of pasta sauce and a pinch of mozzarella (or parmesan) on top and put them back in the oven for the remaining 5ish minutes. 
3. Take them out and eat them, I shouldn't have to explain that! 

Nature Walk -Veggie Style


The view from the tower
Goombah and I went on another adventure! We went to Lapham Peak and discovered the fantastic natural beauty that is just next door to where we live. It was unbelievably hot- 95 degrees!- but luckily the park has plenty of shady areas to hide from the heat. Before we begun, we climbed on top of the park's tower, it was such a beautiful site. We could see the entire park and beyond, so much green, leafy, nature! Goombah & I always joke that we are modern-day hippies because we love being one with nature and exploring the outdoors in every way possible! We discussed how much fun it would be to go back-packing through Europe, and/or to camp and hike by the Grand Canyon. Our traveling dreams sometimes outreach our financial capabilities, (We are the definition of broke college students) but I do hope one day we will be able to go on such splendid vacations. As for being an advegture, I packed myself a fo-turkey sandwich with cranberry wasabi sauce.And Goombah enjoyed a pb&j, so we both had a vegetarian meal! We stopped at a bench in the shade to enjoy our veggie-licious meal! It was such a great day!
My wonderful day did not end there! I met up with a friend from college-Lou- in Madison! We ate at Noodles&Company, which is slowly becoming my favorite vegetarian place! I don't think there is anything there that is not perfectly delicious. To prove this point, every time I go there I've had a different meal. This time I had Whole Grain Tuscan Linguine, with their organic tofu, of course! And, proving my point, it was as delicious as always. I would expect nothing less from Noods! We then adventured around State Street. I decided, and Lou agreed, that State Street is what a lovechild between Downtown Minneapolis and Dinkytown would end up being. It has a low-key feeling mixed with the high-paced city life. A great mixture, but I still am in love with Minneapolis through and through! 

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Daddy's Day

Wayne's Drive In!
Happy Father's Day to all the Dad's out there. Especially The One & Only Dad! Today for Father's Day, The Family and I took a trip to The Parentals's home town of Manitowoc, WI for a nice lunch with The Mom's side of the family.  We ate at Charcoal Grill. The family enjoyed the meat-filled brunch buffet, I opted for a stone-fire grill vegetarian pizza - one of the only veggie-friendly things on the menu. It was quite delicious, but I did have to wait at the table alone while they all walked up to the buffet, which was slightly awkward, but nothing I couldn't handle.
 We continued on our Father's Day Fun and ate dessert at The Grandparentals' house; a strawberry pie and a peach pie. So delicious. One of my rules of life: If The Grandma makes it, it's worth eating.
Noods' Pasta Fresca
On the way home we took a detour to avoid construction and ended up in Cedarburg, WI. We took a visit to Wayne's and got milkshakes! I devoured a chocolate-peanut butter shake, it was so scrumptious. I was surprised to find that Wayne's offered a Boca Burger option! It was a place I would take the detour to visit again!
On other Veg-related news, I had the Pasta Fresca at Noodles&Co. with their organic tofu. If you are vegetarian or not, you would like the tofu available at Noods. It has a great flavor and doesn't have the awful texture that some tofu has. Even The Mom tried a piece and deemed it edible!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Pizza Pizza!

I have had to different vegetable pizzas this week and they were both scrumptious. The first of which was bought at Pick N' Save by The Dad. It was a personal veggie pizza. I made it on the grill due to the fact that we don't have a central air-conditioning system and it's been a hot week! It was cooked to perfection in minutes and was a fantastic dinner for one. I ate it out side on our lawn chairs and read The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards (So far a superb read) as I munched. A perfect solo summer night! 
Tonight, The Mom and I used our fresh basil to make a Margherita Pizza! We bought a pre-made whole grain pizza crust, mozzarella, and marinara sauce and used the fresh tomatoes in our fridge and home-grown basil from our garden. We heated up the grill, and made the mistake of letting the pizza stone heat up a bit too much before we rested the uncooked pizza on top of it. Needless to say, it was quite a crispy first bite! Although it was burnt, it was still so wonderfully fresh and delicious. We ate it up so fast that I forgot to take a picture of it! Shucks! Next time I will make sure we don't burn the pizza and make sure I get a picture! YumYum!