In the Dirty Dirty

Hi eaters!

I’m home in the Dirty Dirty (which is Georgia, for all you new eaters).

After I left you on Thursday, I went out and lived it up a little.

The night started with some champagne and girl time.

Well, Janet drinks Natty Fatties. Because she’s classy.

Once we were feeling social, we headed over to da bar, where we met up with some other people.

We laughed.

No one cried.

This is my favorite bartender. He makes good drinks.

And a guy who strongly doubts  that the Nazis could have possible rounded up 6 million Jews fast enough bought me a beer.

Don’t worry eaters, I gave the beer away.

On Friday, Mother and I were packing maniacs and had my entire life boxed up and in storage by 1pm.

Then we broke for lunch and shopping. Let me tell you, Anthropology was practically giving the clothes away.

Eventually, it was time for my last meal in the ‘Boro. Of course, I chose Natty Greene’s.

I ordered a Colonial IPA to start. Generally, I think their stronger beers lack flavor, but this one was pretty spot on.

And for dinner I ordered something I so rarely eat. Something I always see on menus, but for some reason convince myself it’s not healthy enough.

This time, though, I was all in.

Backyard burger topped with chipotle barbecue sauce, applewood smoked bacon, sauteed onions, and cheddar cheese.

It was so good. I would have liked a bit more spice from the BBQ sauce, but besides that there was nothing I was left wanting for.

I saved about a quarter of it for the pup, who was (hopefully) waiting quietly in the hotel room.

On Saturday morning we packed up bright and early to hit the road. After a handful of stops to let the pup walk around and a stop in Aiken, SC for lunch, we made it home by 5:30.

And now I’m enjoying the perks of home.

I’m taking tons of pictures of my dog.

Sometimes he tolerates it.

He's giving me the stink eye.

Most of the time he doesn’t.

I’m enjoying the smell of our gorgeous tree and the lovely decorations Mother put up.

And after a quick breakfast, I headed out to do some necessary shopping.

Let me tell you, Kroger is nothing like EF. At Kroger, organic is a foreign word, pastry flour hasn’t been invented yet, and you can get berries in December but no pomegranates or parsnips.

Oh well, I still got some good things.

Loot:

Lay’s salt and pepper chips, green bell pepper, yellow onion, baby ‘bella mushrooms, blackstrap molasses, cage free grain fed eggs, Simply Orange juice, West Soy soy milk, thick-cut bacon, Fage fat free Greek yogurt, rolled oats, ginger, lemons, carrots, King Arthur whole wheat flour, and organic diced tomatoes.

Now, my house smells intoxicatingly like ginger and I love it.

And yes, that is a hint about tomorrow’s post.

What about you, eaters:

What did you do this weekend?

And do you always order what you want at a restaurant or do you compromise with yourself?

G’night eaters!

WIAW: To Be Continued

Hi eaters!

Here we are at the halfway mark of the week. So let’s get down to business:

Breakfast —

Silk with Lifetime chocolate plant protein mix, Frosted Mini Wheats, strawberries, raspberries, and almonds.

I took a cue from Gabriela and gave my cereal a protein punch. The verdict?

It tasted good! I like the slightly thicker, more chocolaty milk. Unfortunately, it only kept me satisfied for a little bit longer. I was expecting something noticeable, but really I was still hungry too long before lunch time.

I spent my morning walking to Starfucks, sipping an iced coffee while reading, and playing Legos with Sister (who has been in town with Stepmother the last couple of days). After playtime was over came…

Lunch —

Whole wheat tortilla with Daiya cheddar and spinach, and TJ's tomato and roasted red pepper soup with crushed red pepper flakes.

Yes, another quesadilla. This is just a coincidence, really, because I don’t think I’ve eaten one since the picture I posted last week.

This soup was something I found in the pantry on Sunday night when I was looking for something comforting. But I hate pureed, completely liquid soups like this, so on Sunday I poached two eggs in it. (If you poach the eggs in a liquid you want to eat than it’s pretty much impossible to mess them up.) Today I used it as a dip of sorts. Both were really delightful.

Snack —

Mama Pea's cutout sugar cookie.

While surfing Food Gawker (oh how I wish I knew how to take and edit pictures like those people!) and watching Sex and the City reruns on E! (which ALWAYS makes me think deeply about my own relationships), I snacked on one of Mama Pea’s cookies. By one, I of course mean 2-3. And some almonds.

I also drank a lot of water. As of right now, I’ve drank about 2.5 liters. All out of my Smart Water bottle. I know drinking out of a disposable plastic bottle isn’t green, but for some reason this kind of bottle is the only one that gets me to drink lots of water. And I don’t throw the bottle out after every use. Usually a bottle will last me about a month (with plenty of washes and rinses in between) before I have to get a new one. Does that make it a little better?

Dinner —

Who knows?!

I just picked Mother up from the airport shuttle and we have no idea what we want. Lately, I haven’t really been into dinner. All this week it has been an extreme afterthought. Rather than cooking up something delicious and nutritious I’ve been favoring curling up with a glass of wine or beer.

Isn’t that weird?! I love to cook and eat! Why haven’t I been in a dinner mood? Could I be snacking too much during the day?

And keeping with the questions —

Have you ever broken up with someone? Is there ever a right way to break up with someone? What’s the worst way you’ve ever been broken up with?

(Can you tell I watched the “post-it note” episode of Sex and the City today?)

Alright eaters, Mother and I have to make some moves or we’ll end up with a liquid dinner.

G’night eaters!

WIAW: Dirty Dirty Edition

Hiya eaters!

Hopefully by now you’ve bought Mama Pea’s awesome cookbook. I bought it yesterday and have already made a batch of cookies from it. I’ll probably make another recipe or two and then post my review…tomorrow.

Yeah, I heart Mama Pea’s recipeas like a high school girl hearts her hot English teacher. And her hot religion teacher. And her other hot English teacher.

What can I say, eaters, I like the older men. And I’m creepy. But if you’re still reading than it seems you’re willing to over look the latter and for that I thank-you.

Moving right along…

It’s Wednesday, which means it’s time for another installment of…

In looking through the pictures for this post I noticed just how different my eating is here than when I’m in the ‘Boro, so hopefully you’ll find it interesting also. If not, than at least hopefully you’ll like the pretty pictures. Because the other thing I’ve noticed it how much better the lighting is here! So, ready…set…GO!

Breakfast:

Rolled oats, flax seed meal, raspberries, strawberries, and almond butter on top.

I went out for drinks with some of my friends on Monday night and somehow the talk turned to oatmeal.

We debated the best way to make oatmeal, and I, of course, wowed them with my knowledge strong opinions on the matter.

But that left me with a strong craving for a creamy bowl of oats. I did my best to summer-ize these oats and thanks to an ample amount of berries, I think it worked.

Workout:

I took a Cain class yesterday and whenever I lift weights I drink a protein drink. Unfortunately, the whisk bottle I thought I had left at home was nowhere to be found. So I got creative.

7-11 cup and a whisk.

It wasn’t the best, but it worked well enough.

Lunch:

Whole wheat tortilla filled with TJ's black bean dip, cheddar Daiya, spinach and tempeh, with salsa on the side..

Quesadillas are a pretty typical midday meal around here.

And Mother discovered that my crepe pan also doubles as the perfect quesadilla pan.

Dinner:

Pasta with zucchini, marinara sauce and red pepper flakes.

If you’re a single or busy parent (or the child of one), you’ll understand why pasta was such a staple of my childhood. Usually with a side of broccoli.

This was leftover from a night or two before, so I gussied it up with some mixins’ and it did the trick.

Am I the only one who sees how different this is from the way I normally eat? Am I the only one who thinks this is really interesting? Yes? Alright, I don’t mind.

But at least tell me you appreciate the better lighted photos. Because I reallyreally like those.

Now tell me — Do you eat differently when you’re home than when you’re on your own? Why do you think that is?

G’night eaters.

Pie Perfect Summer: Finally, the Crust

‘Ello eaters!

It’s been a wonderful couple of days in my neck of the woods. A very satiating breakfast. A hardcore upper body weights workout. A quick (and mostly painless) MRI. And some pool time. Tacos for dinner. And some time with manly friend.

Yup, I’m a very happy ‘Baby.

How are you cool eaters doing? Equally as wonderful? I surely do hope so.

Anyway, I teased you Wednesday with talk of pie. Actually, I teased you quite a while ago with talk of this awesome pie crust that I made, but couldn’t remember the recipe for. So today, all my teasing and tempting is finally paying off, because it’s pie time!

Black and Blue Pie

Double Crust

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

2 ½ c whole wheat pastry flour

1 ½ T sugar

1 t salt

1 t apple cider vinegar

~ 1- 1 ½ c ice cold water

1 c butter (or Earth Balance), cubed and cold

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt. Then using a pastry cutter, begin cutting in a portion of the butter. After a few minutes of butter smooshing, add some more. Repeat until all the butter has been added.

At this point, it’s time for some naughty rebellious ‘Baby advice. Pastry purists usually say not to add the water until all the butter has been reduced to pea-sized balls. I, m’dear eaters, am not a pastry purist.

Hell, I’m not a purist of anything (that I can think of at the moment). So I say poo to all those fundamentalists purists, because cutting in that last bit of butter is hard. So I make it easy by adding a little bit of cold water. Not much. Probably less than 1/3 c. But it’s just enough to get everything going smoothly.

Now, once the butter is fully incorporated, it’s time to add more water. First, though, add the vinegar.

Note — Some people say vodka. Others say lemon juice. Really, anything acidic will work.

Now add some water, no more than 1/3 c at a time, and mix with the spatula.  Soon, you’ll have to get your hands in there. I promise, it’s worth it. Once the dough is just barely holding together, divide it into two balls, wrap in plastic wrap or foil and put in the freezer for about an hour.

While the dough is cooling, make the…

Filling

1 ½ qt blackberries

1 pt blueberries

½ lemon, juiced

1 T lemon zest

2 T sugar

2 T ground flaxseed meal

Mix everything together in a bowl.

This is your basic, all-purpose pie-filling recipe. If I know that a specific spice goes wonderfully with the fruit I’ll add it in, but most of the time this is it. It’s crazy stupid easy.

I heart berries.

Note — How do you tell if you have enough fruit for the filling? Pour the plain fruit into the pie pan. Remember there is going to be a bottom crust, but also that the berries will bake down. Fill the pie as much as you have crust for.

Don't tell me this isn't a beautiful.

Once the dough is chilled, roll it out using my oh so wonderful cheating method. Then fill it to the brim, top with the other crust, seal with a fork, and vent with a knife.

You know … the usual pie baking procedure.

Now bake the pie in a 450 degree oven for 10 minutes, before lowering the temperature to 350 degrees and baking for another 35-40 minutes. The crust should be golden and the berries just barely bubbling up through the ventilation slits at the top. Once you see this, let the pie cool on the stove until it’s about room temperature and then move it to the fridge.

The longer you let it chill in the fridge, the better. But I’m no purist, so feel free to take a fork to it straight out of the oven. (Though don’t say I didn’t warn you about burning hot berries.)

My ‘mates and friends and I dug into this pretty pie last night, as you can see.

And as you can see, I probably should have let it chill more before cutting into it.

Just like a pastry purist would take one look at my top crust and say that it’s oddly lumpy and I should have used an egg wash.

But I don’t care.

Perfection, if I do say so myself.

Because this pie is wonderful in all it’s unadulterated berry glory.

And frankly, I think pie is often ruined by too many rules.

So eaters, I urge you to throw rules and your fear of pastry to the wind. And then I dare you to try and resist licking the plate clean.

Oh yeah, eaters, I went there.

Yeah, you’ll lose that dare. And it’ll be so worth it.

G’night eaters!