Saturday, January 30, 2010

Eating to Live= bingeing to death?

Recipes Tried 68/250
i really should make an effort to post more often because then it comes to the end of the week and i have so much to say i'm practically bursting with ideas and comments! but here we are..

i am not really going to do my regular recipe roundup because i didn't really make too many recipes this week as i was trying to get back to eat to live, which i did successfully for the first 4days of the week as i promised myself i would. and i did actually loose a bit of weight..which i consequently regained im sure by my weekend eating habits. I just have a little "thing" for sugar. I cant get enough of it!

I've wondered, since i went back to eat to live- if its causing me to want to binge more because i deprive myself so badly on it of the obvious things aka: fats (even healthy oils) and carb's in the form of whole grains even. I felt more bingey this weekend then i have the whole month when i wasnt following the plan religiously.
hmmm...thats food for thought. but i still prefer how etl makes me feel when i'm following it religiously.

highlights of the week:

*i learned a new trick!! on how to improve green smoothies (because kale tastes just yucky in them!!!!!)- it is, to blend 1/2lime rind and all into the smoothie and it will mask the taste of the greens. This actually worked!!! and made my smoothie of blueberry, radicchio, romaine, and parsley palatable.

Kind Recipes Tried:

  • Alicia's magical healing soup: A! tastes like it's actually healing you :)
  • Crispy peanut butter treats: i cant rate because i didn't really make them properly, and i used millet puffs, but the brown rice syrup was kind of sickly sweet and not enough PB flavor, plus: carob chips do not work well in this
  • Black Soy Bean and Kabocha Squash Stew: B, kind of bland- maybe i made it wrong i didnt have all the same ingredients but it kind of left something to be desired. I did like the squash though! which i've never had before! and was beyond excited to find at planet organic!
  • Lemon PoppySeed Poundcake Cupcakes: umm.SOO GOOD!!! A++, i ate 4 in one day and my family even approved them- that was even with me cutting the sugar. I love love love em, but i wont be making them that often as i am tempted to eat them all- and they still have oil in them. oops :O

thats all for now! busy busy busy and stressed, the goal for next week will be to make more recipes and use etl ones or etl principles= without stuffing myself.

xoxo Green Love Goddess

Monday, January 25, 2010

munching my way to obesity

Recipes tried to date: 58/250

In my haste of the weekend i completely forgot to blog this week's cooking experiments! As i discussed in my previous post, i was going to start trying recipes from Alicia's cookbook. So i better discuss that a bit. Much to my disappointment, the sodium in these recipes is RIDICULOUS!!! i instantly felt sick after trying a mix of Shoyu and Ume on tofu scramble- and lets face it-collard greens just do not sit well with me! bleckkk the texture is just something i can not swallow cooked.
And also- am i REALLY going to try Sea Vegetables??? not likely! they are hella expensive and that doesnt taste good to me.
I'm what i like to call a gourmet vegan- and that means-i love savory/spicy stuff- this usually comes in the form of inspiration from Italian, middle eastern, Moroccan, Indian, and Thai flavors.
I've never really been a fan of sushi or soy sauce or Vietnamese/Chinese type flavors, so for that reason- these type of dishes are not going to be my favorites.
Sorry to say i already bought the Shoyu and Ume which were $7 each! and they wont be used often. Also that poor wakame that is sitting in the back of my cubard.

That being said; she does have plenty of recipes that dont use these weird condiments and could also be modified to remove them. Here's what i tried from hers.

-tofu scramble; too salty way way to salty!
-mochi waffles*; with rice syrup- ive never had rice syrup and its an interesting change- i dont mind it- and the mochi is kind of fun to eat! plus-isnt mochi just fun to say?!
-fried rice; less salty, but still kind of greasy and doesnt sit well
-hot chocolate*; good!! love the blend and tastes just like carnations, which i remember as a kid- so this is a good thing
-smoothie a'la alicia; cinnamon sticks in smoothies= NO, stomach pain- mine was an attempt at "apple pie smoothie" and ended up being slightly reminiscent of an unfortunate Vega experience from early vegetarian days- puke!
-cauliflower steaks; bland bland bland- needs a sauce
-thumbprint cookies; vegetable oil=yuck. these cookies are WAY to oily, my version used cocoa powder and PB but that still did not mask the oily taste
And the result its= i only liked the hot chocolate and the mochi!

I feel terrible for being a little food critic- but everyone has their preferences and its just not mine! and i honestly dont believe people should be eating dishes that have 44% sodium in 1tsp!!!!!! c'mon! thats crazy! Unless people are going to eat 100% well all the time- this just doesnt measure up. Im sure if one followed her diet completely it would balance out- but im not that dedicated. Alas- i will continue to try her recipes- the ones that dont have this stuff in them! so stay tuned on the Kind Life.

Next Up: the winners!
  1. Celery Root Soup with Apples: the Conscious Cook: This is actually one of my favorite cookbooks, its so "Gourmet" i love its! but a lot of the recipes are meant for summer or spring, which it clearly is not right now- so i'll have to wait. First of all, imagine my delight in discovering i could actually find celery root in my city! i've never had it before so that was cool! This soup is creamy and delicious- and totally unexpected, of course i assumed since i dont really like celery that it would taste bland and yucky- but when you add the special "cream" and top with the apples- it tastes almost like potato soup. Very delish! A+!
  2. Stuffed Artichoke: this recipe is a family secret from my dear friend nortydog on Peer Trainer. I just recently tried artichoke (fresh) for the first time and enjoyed it!! the stuffed artichoke was terribly elegant and deeply delicious! i was plum full! A!
  3. Mochi Waffles with Lemon Brown Rice Syrup: the Kind Diet: as i said before- these are good! mochi is a rice thing-- i dont know exactly and if you want to know you'll have to look it up. No there isnt really a benefit of using mochi over regular waffle mix in my opinion, but it was still an interesting way to eat the stuff, it puffs up all cute and crunchy- and dont we all just love Crunchy stuff??! :) B+!
  4. Chickpea Tacos: my own ok not being conceded by tooting my own horn here, but i made this up inspired by a few recipes ive leafed through and they are fricken awesome!! I kind of swiped the idea from Happy Herbivore but her recipe has the chickpeas roasted- and lets face it- i dont have time for that!!! im usually ravenous when i get home and waiting while something is in the oven for more then 30min means i'll rip off the fridge door. SO any who- i made a taco "meat" of crushed chickpeas and chopped mushrooms- sauteed with a bit of onion and red pepper- the usual taco spices (which by ended up tasting just like a fajita mix); and then served up with tofutti sour cream, an avocado-chipotle cream i made, black olives, and..drumroll---A NON NASTY VEGAN CHEESE!! which i will name here as Galaxy Foods; cheddar flavor- honestly ppl it tastes like the real deal- to my delight! And i wrapped them up in sm Corn Tortillas with shredded lettuce. It was SOO Good and SOO easy, im very proud of myself and will make this again- even non-veggies may like it!

Thats all for NOW on that subject: but i need to address the other part of this post "munching my way to obesity". ha ha. I say this because in my effort to cook as much as possible, im finding there is only little-me to eat them and i do NOT like leftovers. So- ive become somewhat like a bottomless pit stuffing myself to the breaking point. And some of these dishes use a lot more oil and butter then im used to. Sadly- my stomach is not keeping up and im gaining alot of weight.

So- this week and the next 5 weeks are going to be Eat to Live- that generally means beans, greens, fruit and veggies-nuts in moderation. Im not going to be totally silly and give up all i've worked for and started here, but i do need to trim the fat out of my diet a bit. So Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays are here by known as free days where i can try my special recipes without restriction. After the initial 3 weeks of recasting i will make my recipes if i can modify them to be more ETL. THEN- i can add more things back as long as i know how to eat less of them. I've printed off a whole load of recipes from Disease Proof which on their own look pretty good.
The goal: 130lb by my birthday FEB 26- 1 month. Lets do it!! And i am a firm believer that people CAN eat well fat free without sacrificing taste, so im going to try my very hardest to prove that!

Happy Cooking Everyone!
xoxo Green Love Goddess

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Culinary Delights-week 1

Recipes Tried Since Jan 5: 45!/250
1 Week of my challenge complete and it had it's ups and downs!! aka--mental breakdowns, thinking of food ALL the time, living in the kitchen, spending hundreds on groceries. But its fun!
I was planning on giving a review of all the recipes i tried so far, by week. But i've cooked so much its hard to remember or keep track so i'm not going to do that.

Ok so i tried my first fancy dish- Risotto. Wow you really feel like a top notch chef cooking this dish as it requires that you stay in front of the stove for aprx 30min, constantly stirring and adding liquid until the dish turns into a velvety, creamy, fluffy-melt-in your mouth deliciousness. And if you put in the time, it does!

i've made it twice this week, different flavors, the first version was better in my opinion
Dish 1: Sweet Potato, Sage, Scallion Risotto from Healthy.Happy.Life/ this is a great combination of flavors and would make a great vegan thanksgiving entree as the sage fills the house with that turkey cooking aroma. A+! i would make it again, but its so rich the butter/oil combination is a bit much. I added far less then the recipe calls for.

Dish 2: My first "Bruchetta":Red Pepper and Olive Bruchetta the recipe comes from my good friend jeannie17 on PeerTrainer. And combines; tomatoes, basil, white onion, red pepper (raw), kalamata olives, olive oil, red wine vinegar, s&p (scant oil)/ this tastes great on top of melba toast or maybe toasted baguette. The olives add a distinct unexpected flavor- its so simple and elegant it will defiantly be on my list of party appetizers. Thanks Jeannie!

Dish 3: Radicchio Truffle Oil Pizza (Spelt/Whole Wheat Crust) i've never had radicchio or truffle oil before so this was an exciting experience for me. The recipe is from the Kind Diet*/ at first taste of the raw mix i was worried i was not going to like it, the lettuce is extremely bitter and the truffle oil is expensive!! but has an odd flavor, i'm probably just not used to it. Either way, im adventurous so i figured id still give it a go, i added some caramelized onions we had on hand because i was worried the lettuce on its own would be bland- when it cooked, it transformed!!! suddenly the bitterness was mellowed by rich olive oil, sharp sea-salt- and the sweetness of the caramelized onions. what a great combination! needless to say- i ate the whole pizza, i didnt miss the cheese, and i will be making it again! A

Among other things; these 3 dishes are the stars this week. Looking forward to another week of great food! hopefully my stomach can keep up, because im also trying to loose that last 5lbs. ha ha! wish me luck

NOTE: i just got the Kind Diet, which is Vegan- Alicia Silverstone's cookbook. i was very excited about this because first of all a) she is lovely and thin! b) the dishes are exotic and decadent c) she claims you will loose weight by cooking this way!! all bonuses. The only thing that worries me is less fruit and more emphasis on exotic vegetables and ..ick..sea vegetables. I know they are 'good' for me, and as a vegan i need the nutrients. But im so scared to try!! that seems like weird vegan food to me. Another thing she emphasizes is a lot of Greens, even for breakfast! and im not shy of greens, so i'm not worried about that.
Unfortunately, this diet may not work well where i am as almost all of our food is imported, especially in the winter. So i'll try my best to incorporate what i can.
One thing im going to work towards is "Superhero" status which will introduce a lot of different foods, whole grains, vegetables, shoyu, umebochi plums, miso. bring it on!

I've added her recipes to my list of to-do's this year, and it rings up at 89 recipes! almost the whole book. Its a great book, i highly recommend it to all vegans and non-vegans alike.

happy cooking! xoxo Green Love Goddess

Saturday, January 9, 2010


Ok so in the tradition of new years resolutions im copying pretty much EVERYONE and posting them somewhere in hopes that i might actually make headway and meet my goals this year! ha! that will be a challenge.

First of all. I watched Julie and Julia. And i liked it!! but it made me love food even more then i already do and made me wanna be even more passionate about cooking then i already am. Many of my friends have made it their goal to cook more from cookbooks and such, a-la julie/julia. So WHY not me too :)
I even saw a blog for someone following and julie/julia for EFH (eat for health). Which is amazing! because that food is king and is by far the healthiest. But- my love for eating that way will have to be on hold because a) produce is REALLY expensive in the winter and not all that great b) its just not diverse enough for gourmet cooks-like myself (ha ha!). So sorry ETL but i'll have to put you on hold for now..

The GOALs. in this order:

1- STOP BINGEING!! i've been doing this secretly for far to long and im only now just realizing the discusting quanity of food i eat (good OR bad foods). it's go to stop and i've got to give it up so i can maintain a low weight and not feel deprived
ACTION PLAN?: i've heard good things about the Beck Diet- so i think i should pick up the book. Its funny how i dont FEEL like i have a problem till i have one of my little episodes and realize, yes yes i do, and then i wish id had some book like this is front of me at the time rather then the big bowl of soy ice cream, cookies, extc, that i had instead. So maybe just reading the book in advance will prep me
-also with my PeerTrainer friends, i am giving myself a sticker each day for 100days that i dont binge- the reward? lu lu lemon outfit!
-record my feeling on when i overdid it and reread them if i feel like doing it again!! not sure if that will work, but worth a try!

2- LOOSE AND KEEP OFF- the last 10lbs- Ok that one is obvious and im sure its on EVERYONES to do list this year. But ive been working at it consistently so its only on my list as a reminder to work even harder this year at maintaining as i loose. Yes- i have lost the 10lbs AND regained it. more than once. Enough. just get there and STAY there.
ACTION PLAN? my family and i need to do a biggest loser type challenge because im competitive! i havent figured out the logistics of it yet, but i need to loose 10-15! the motivation? Hawaii next christmas!! i already looked fat as hell on this one so im gonna be hot as hell on the next one, i guarentee it
And honestly- its not THAT hard to maintain weight, you work hard, you loose it, then you maintain it. loads of people have done it and are doing it right now, everyday. So why cant i?? is it that nobody notices my weight loss or gain? idk. But if i just work hard and dont think so hard about it, i can be one of those people too. without obsessing.

3-NO DIETING um how many times have i turned down dinners out with friends because i didnt wanna gain weight?? how many times have i turned down desserts, samples, movie treats because i was so afraid of gaining weight?? I have a phobia of added fats, sugar, and sodium. I am terrified of what it will do to me! i hate not knowing whats in my food. but that being said- i cant be such a control freak with everything> i need to be able to have a small but reasonable portion of whatever thing i want! (vegan only of course). and not feel guilty or think it will blow my weight.
btw. that also means- not weighing in often- or at all. that means- eating when im hungry, stopping when im full, and not eating when im not hungry. simple!

4-YOGA i started getting into it this year and at first hated it, but the more i do it, the more i enjoy it and really do feel happier and more toned. There was a period in november where i did it am and pm for 30days. i felt great! i want to continue doing it as much as possible as well as hot yoga class for the next year, it will become natural to me!
I havent done it much post vay-k and its hard to get back!! but i need to!

5-COOKING! i already consider myself an accomplished cook, but i like to make my own recipes-taking inspiration for recipes or tips ive found along the way. I have a huge collection of cookbooks that have fabulous recipes, as well as my favorite online blogs here. and i havent cooked nearly any of them! (certainly not ones from my cook books). I'm still a cooking newbie, and i need to impress people and prove that vegan isnt boring. so i need to try the recipes and make them my own.
ACTION PLAN? 200 recipes! that is the goal. Im compiling a list from these resources;
  • Eat to live style; from etl, efh, and diseaseproof: various- im not counting, these are fairly simple recipes but can be time consuming and take alot of resources- cooking more of them will be good for my health, but im not that excited by all of them- i think i'll mainly use the breakfasts, dinner dishes and desserts from this one.
  • Vegan cooking for one; 30 recipes; i got this as a gift very new into my vegetarianism- i was excited but didnt end up cooking much from it! i like that is only for one serving- as im the only one cooking and eating this stuff, and i hate having leftovers! id say most of these are easy- the only thing is they use soy butter, which im not a fan of using alot of.

  • The Conscious Cook: 30 recipes; purely brilliant! this is going my be my biggest challenge- the recipes are defiantly gourmet and advanced but they look really pretty and would impress dinner guests immensely. i must get through this one for sure!

  • One Dish Vegetarian Meals:22 recipes; im not that jazzed about this one but again, i have it and i havent been cooking from it! im not sure if i'll get through it. Easy level

  • Blogs: Fat Free Vegan: 41* ok let me just say. i LOVE this woman! Susan V is an excellent cook, all of her recipes are so great and ive tried many of them before starting this challenge. they are fairly easy to follow and i adore that they have none or little fat, and not much sugar either! shes my kind of cook. So i'm going to try to make ALOT of hers. Happy Herbivore: 7 another great fat free blog! also easy recipes, i will get through all of these definatly. i have cooked a few of hers already. Healthy.Happy.Life kathy is a great and accomplished cook as well- she seems to use short cuts for some of her recipes and vegan cheese. which i dont really like. But i like her ideas and presentation, ive made a few and will make a some more!

  • Vegetarian Times Magazine: ive been collecting these for a while and have at least 10! and they werent cheap either. ive always admired the recipes- so i'll try to make a few of them too. id say they are moderate. it is vegetarian though and mostly cheese based, also not at all diet friendly- so i will have to change most of them if i do use them.

Ok so thats over 100 recipes right there! 200 should be no problem to accomplish, in fact id like to do 250 but lets not get ahead of ourselves! I know its going to teach me alot and will be a valuable project. helloo..wife skillz! :). Its important that i mention that i already know how to cook and am more than capable of coming up with my own recipes, but i want to try this so i can improve my cooking and learn a bit more about food paring and flavours. So- as a result of this project i hope to come up with my own cookbook of my favorite recipes and my own recipes. maybe i'll publish it one day! or maybe i'll get good enough to share them on this blog (if i ever figure out how to post stuff!).

Wow! what a long post. I dont know if anyone reads this junk but it helps for me to put it out there as a commitment to myself and i can look back on it easily to make sure im doing what i said i would. I expect that 2010 will bring great things for me career wise, life wise, and relationship wise. I want to balance my body mind and spirit and embrace positivity in everyday life. heres to reaching our goals.

Good luck everyone! xoxo Green Love Goddess.