Tag Archives: food

Tasty Tuesday: Roasted Chickpeas

I’ve been keeping a pretty tight watch on Pinterest lately. Yesterday I spent an hour friending people and looking through their pins. It was AMAZING. So many cheap DIY ideas and pretty house stuff. I can only imagine what it will be like when I actually have something to plan for like a new house or a wedding or a baby or something. One question I have, with all the time people spend on Pinterest, do they ever actually do any of the things they pin??

Here the link to my Pinterest if you’re interested in following me.

On that note, Pinterest has become my online recipe book and I finally made something from it on Sunday: Roasted Chickpeas. I found the recipe on one of my favorite blogs: SammieKennedy.com. Here is the link for her post of the recipe.

So I had a couple of cans of chickpeas with every intention of making them into hummus, then I thought, why not fry them instead? These were so tasty warm out of the oven but even better when I toasted them again the next day. So savory with just a little crunch. And actually pretty good for you. And for the financial restricted, they’re cheap too!

RoastedChickpeas-Published

 

Ingredients

  • 2 12oz cans of organic chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil (ok because this will be medium heat only)
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tbsp cumin
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp sea salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. 
  2. Drain and rinse the chickpeas with water. Dry them on a paper towel.
  3. Add chickpeas and all spices to a bowl and stir until chickpeas are covered.
  4. Pour oil in pan then heat it in the oven for a few minutes. Take it out and shake the pan to distribute the oil.
  5. Spread the chickpeas in the pan in a single layer.
  6. Cook for 10 minutes shaking the pan every 3 minutes to ensure the peas don’t burn.
  7. Enjoy!

Tip: These will dry out over night. Stick them in the toaster for a couple of minutes for an even tastier, crispier snack.

Thanks for the recipe Sammie Kennedy! Everyone, please check out her site for more awesome recipes and health info.

And let me know what you think after making these 🙂

 

My Diet: The Mystery Revealed

I got a message from a friend last night. She has been gluten-free for a while now but is still having gastrointestinal problems. Most of my friends know how crazy sensitive my stomach is and how much I have to do (and not do) to tame it. So voila! A page just for that. Check out the panel just above this post for “My Diet.” Or click on this link.

Feel free to ask any questions or let me know if you think something I said was wrong.

I hope you’re all having wonderful days! It’s important to keep that smile on right now, after the Holidays. Maybe if you fake it for a while, you will convince others AND yourself that it’s real 🙂

Monday Advice: Enjoy Your Holiday Meals!

Alright ya’ll, listen up! For the next 24 hours, do everything you try not to do on a regular basis.

For example:
– Don’t exercise just sleep in instead!
– Keep on your pajamas for as long as possible.
– Eat that cheese and chips and stuffing and dessert!
– Just enjoy the holidays.

The catches (you knew there’d be a few):
– Note how your body feel before the crappy food and after. Remember that feeling.
– Try to throw in some veggies (raw if possible) even if it means sneaking a salad in the middle of the day. Remember how good you feel after you eat those.
– Go on walks! Walks any time of day any weather during the holidays are wonderful. Do it with a loved one. Just take a quiet break from all the shenanigans and get your blood pumping.

That’s pretty much it. I’m getting my routine check up at the doctor right now. After this, let the relaxation begin!

One more thing, make sure to thank all those people that have to work today and tomorrow. There’s a lot of people that have given up their holiday to make sure the world keeps turning. Thank you guys!! Hopefully you get some time to rest too.

Much love and Merry Christmas Eve!

Fun Times Friday: Date Night Creativity

If you’ve been following this blog for a bit, you know that Mike and I go on a date every Saturday night. Each week we switch off planning and paying for them and, if possible, we make it a surprise. So last week was mine and, considering I’m on a VERY tight budget I’ve had to get pretty creative with what we do. My budget most weeks is about $25 for both of us. How the heck do I figure that out??

Well if you keep an eye out for free events going on in your town, you never know what you’ll find! There’s a nice, upper class area called Peoria Heights that I drive through every once in a while and I saw a sign for “Chocolate in the Heights.” You know those signs that you tend to ignore because you’re just too busy going about your day? This was one of those. But since I’ve come to realize my not awesome financial state, I’ve started actually looking at those signs! There was no description of what it was, just that it was the next Saturday (yes!) from 10am-5pm. I did a little searching and found a slightly more detailed poster for the event.

chocmap2012brochure

Using my deductive reasoning, I assumed that each boutique and shop on the main street would have some kind of deal on chocolate and/or something free to offer. Done and done!

As usual, I planned to take him to this event and then bring him home and cook a nice, sit-down meal for us both.

I kept it a surprise until we parked in the Heights and let’s just say Mike looked less than excited. However! I kept the energy going. I gave us $15 to spend on chocolate and whatever else we wanted and, because I had to work late, we had an hour to do it.

It ended up being REALLY fun. Of course we only took one picture because I was too excited to remember to take more. But we discovered a whole street of awesome shops we didn’t know were there: an oil and vinegar shop with about 30 different types of gourmet vinegar (cool!) and a few more specialty shops with random but also really unusual knick-knacks. We got some great gift ideas for Christmas.

photo-3

^ Yep, I look like I’ve just discovered gold.

We used this as our food vacation day and got lots of delectable treats. Free stuff we indulged in: chocolate fountain (see above), chocolate pretzel clusters, oil and vinegar samples, cheese, wine, beer, and chocolate cupcakes. With our $15 we bought an amazing triangle of cheese, a bar of specialty chocolate, and some Pear Balsamic Vinegar. And we had such a good time scoping out the options and then going back to the shops to purchase what we wanted.

So it’s possible! To have a few hours of fun and still stick to your budget. You just have to keep an eye out for free things around your town.

Happy Friday everyone! 🙂

Produce: To Buy Organic or Not?

I had a realization last night that I really want this blog to be about staying healthy with no time OR money. I think I’ve done pretty well with the no time but where’s the money guidance Ashley!? Where is it?

Organic produce: SUPER expensive but sometimes it’s really worth it. Here’s an easy to follow list of rules when buying produce. Or anything really.

Rule #1: If it’s available, buy LOCAL – this is because the closer you can get to where your food is produced, the more you can be comfortable that it’s not grown with any pesticides or other crappy chemicals. Also, the shorter the shipping distance, the more nutrients left when it hits your mouth. And you’re supporting your local economy! Here’s a guide to see if your community offers the best thing for local produce, farmer’s markets.

Rule #2: If it’s available, buy ORGANIC – again, chemicals (such as pesticides) are bad in food and very bad in your body. Get that stuff out of there! Also, non organic produce is often genetically modified and much lower in nutrients. [According to a study done by Stanford, link here, there are no more nutrients in organic food than conventionally grown. However, there is a strong but so far unstudied likelihood that the presence of pesticides affects your body so much that it is not able to absorb all the nutrients in the produce.]  If you’re gonna eat an apple, might as well get all the good you can out of it, right?

Rule #3: If organic is too expensive or there’s a limited selection, follow the list of the CLEAN FIFTEEN and DIRTY DOZEN. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) puts out this awesome list every year of the cleanest and dirtiest produce on the market that year. If it’s on the clean fifteen, it has very few pesticides and isn’t a huge harm to your body. If it’s on the dirty dozen, only buy it organic because conventional farmers basically bathe it in a chemical bath.

^This is a great pocket guide you can download from the website but you should definitely check it out in all it’s glory. Here’s the link. I am signed up for the newsletter (they don’t bombard your inbox like I do) and I got the app for my phone so I can have it whenever I’m at the market.

How is your market’s selection of organic produce? What has been your organic buying practice up to now?

Don’t forget to smile 🙂

Sunday Recipe: Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Sugar Free Pancakes

Today is a seriously gorgeous day in Peoria. Scattered clouds, beautiful blue sky, about 67°F. AND one of my best friends managed to extend a work trip in the area and we get a whole two days with her! She is leaving very soon and I’m gonna be really sad. It’s so amazing to be around someone who you can sit in comfortable silence with then break the silence with an awesome conversation and easy laugh. I love it and miss it/her a lot.

And what’s even more awesome is that she is gluten and lactose intolerant just like me! So this morning we made gluten free pancakes for all of us. They were SO good. Just sweet enough and dense enough to be like normal pancakes without all the bloating and over-full feeling. And Katie had the awesome idea to use the leftovers for a post-workout snack.

Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 cups coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/3 cups multi-purpose gluten free flour (I keep this around to use as a thickening agent in some recipes)
  • 1/2 tsp stevia powder or 15 drops stevia liquid
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon xantham gum

Instructions:

1) Whisk together the eggs, melted butter, coconut milk, and vanilla.

2) In a separate bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. Stir in the egg mixture.

3) Let the mixture sit for 15 minutes (this makes them fluffier). Preheat skillet on medium for the last 5 minutes.

4) Lightly grease it with coconut oil or another high heat oil. Scoop the batter (I use a small glass) into small dollar sized pancakes.

5) Cook pancakes for 1 to 2 minutes, till the tops lose their shine and bottoms are golden brown. Flip and cook for 1 to 2 minutes on the other side.

6) Top it with whatever delicious yummies you can find in your fridge. We used berries and pure maple syrup (not sugar free).
Sunday breakfast is probably one of my favorite meals of the week. YUM.
I hope you’re having wonderfully peaceful Sundays 🙂

Thursday Recipe: Build-a-Salad

 

*to those interested, birthday update at the bottom of the page

Whenever I mention healthy eating, people’s automatic reaction is, “I hate salad.” Let me share something, me too. The typical restaurant salad is cold, unsavory, and wholly unsatisfying. But I’ve recently determined that they’re doing it wrong. As I’ve mentioned before, my current lifestyle goal is only eating grain for lunch and restricting carbs at dinner. This is not to lose weight but to prevent a haphazard insulin spike right before bed. So “salads” have become my go to dinner options and I’ve realized, they’re not all that bad!

To build a great salad just replace whatever carb you were going to use (pasta, rice, potatoes, etc) with dark leafy greens (I prefer spinach). This means that you get the healthy without sacrificing the hot and savory.

Recently, in the vain of cooking a big portion of one thing, I made cooked a big batch of lentils and steamed some extra veggies I had lying in my fridge. Here is the result:

^ Start with the leafy green base. Don’t worry, it will be covered up soon.

^ Add whatever warm veggies you decided to cook. I have zucchini, red bell peppers, and eggplant.

^ Pile on whatever protein you want. I made lentils but you could do any kind of meat or legume.

^ Top it off with a healthy fat like goat or sheep cheese (pretty much lactose free) and some oil based dressing like balsamic or italian. And enjoy!

* Final note: My birthday ended up being quite wonderful. My coworkers remembered and even gave me gifts. I got so much love through this blog and facebook and texting and phone calls. AND Mike came home from his business trip early! He surprised me at work with flowers, a bottle of wine, and a Gap coat that I’ve been eyeing for months. What wonderful people I have in my life. Thanks everyone 🙂

Today, just smile.