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my favorite veggie

I can honestly say that brussels sprouts might be my favorite vegetable.  People either love or hate brussels sprouts, I don’t think that there is anything in between.  They can have a bitter taste if not cooked properly, but they are yummy and crunchy is cooked well!

Last night we made another dish from 101cookbooks.com with some substitutions.

Shredded Brussels Sprouts & Apples (recipe here)

Since the recipe can be found from Heidi at 101cookbooks.com, I will just let you know what we changed:

  • 2 herb chicken sausages instead of tofu
  • 1/3 cup pepitas instead of pine nuts
  • chopped brussels sprouts instead of shredded
  • added shredded parmesan cheese on top

I don’t think that these changes/substitutions changed the flavor of the recipe at all.  If was super quick to make and delicious!  We both kept saying “Mmmmm…” after each bite. 🙂

The chicken/tofu and apples are sauteed with maple syrup giving the a subtle sweetness.

And, the brussels sprouts are cooked until browned and caramelized.

Everything mixed together was delicious!

We served this over a bed of quinoa (cooked, then mixed with 1 tbsp maple syrup, salt and pepper) and sprinkled it with some freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Backing up to breakfast, which was a yummy bowl of oatbran cooked with 1/2 banana, vanilla and cinnamon.

Topped with chocolate almond butter, banana slices and coconut.

Lunch was a tuna fish sandwich mixed with dijon mustard, relish and stuffed into a pita.  With an apple on the side.

Before dinner I snacked on a Luna Bar…

…and headed out for a 45 minute jog.  It was chilly, but felt great to be active outside in the cool weather.

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holiday brussels sprouts

Despite daylight savings and it being lighter earlier in the mornings, I seem to be having more trouble waking up!  Maybe it’s my body telling me I need more sleep?  Maybe it’s because I’m not sleeping well at night?  Who knows!

What I did know yesterday morning, was that I wanted a smoothie for breakfast.  Are you surprised?! 🙂

Mango Smoothie

  • 1 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 cup frozen mango
  • 1 scoop Sunwarrior vanilla protein powder
  • 2 tbsp pepitas
  • 3/4 cup milk

Mix it all up and enjoy!

Mid-morning, I was hungry for a snack, so I opened up a new bar I found at Trader Joe’s:

A Pure Bar

It was a bit chunkier than a Larabar, but had a similar texture.  And, a great ingredient list!

For lunch, I heated up an Amy’s Burrito.  There were slim pickings in our fridge yesterday, luckily Brant headed to the grocery store last night!

I ran out to do a few errands, and PinkBerry just happened to be there!

A small tart with mango, raspberries and brownie bites…mmmm….

For dinner, I was half creative and half boring!

A veggie burger on an english muffin with a side of Brussels Sprouts.

For the delicious brussels sprouts, I tried something a little bit new.  They would be perfect for a holiday dinner!

Brussels Sprouts with Cherries & Cheese

  • 1 pound Brussels Sprouts
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp dijon mustard
  • drizzle of agave or honey
  • pinch of salt
  • grind of pepper
  • 1/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup sharp cheese (i used stilton)

First, wash, rise and chop your brussels sprouts.  Then add them to a heated skillet with 1-2 tbsp of olive oil.

Turn your heat up to medium-high and make sure that they are all face down so that they brown and caramelize a bit.

After 7-10 minutes of cooking, check your sprouts to see if they have browned a bit.  They should look like this…be patient!!

Once browned, turn the heat down to medium and add your mustard, agave (or honey), salt and pepper and mix.

Then, add your cranberries and crumbled cheese.

Mix until combined.

These came out great!  They were cooked perfectly and the spiciness of the mustard really balances out the sweetness of the cranberries and cheese.  YUM!

Homemade veggies to balance out my boxed veggie burger. 🙂

okra chips

I packed up my lunch and headed over to Barnes & Noble for lunch today to get some work done…on my lunch break…from work.

I had 2 leftover Millet Patties (I guess these lasted me the whole week!), leftover veggies from last night’s omelets and okra chips!

These okra chips were great, but very crunchy and loud.

On to dinner.

I got my dinner inspiration from one of Heidi’s recipesBrussels Sprouts & Apples.

I chopped up my brussels sprouts and apples into bite size chunks and sauteed them in 1 tbsp of olive oil, 1 tbsp of pure maple syrup and 1 clove of garlic.

After about 7 minutes on medium-high heat, I added some raisins and chopped pecans and mixed together until warm.

While I was chopping and cooking, I put some quinoa on to cook.  I mixed the quinoa with a little salt, pepper and dried thyme.  Then, served the brussels sprouts & apple mix over it.

Super delicious with a mix of fruits, veggies, fats and complete protein!

a randomly delicious meal

I made a delicious dinner last night, but then we were up way to late doing our taxes for me to post!  It was a lot of random stuff basically thrown together, but the combination worked out perfectly.  I starred into the fridge trying to figure out what to make and came out with Brussels Sprouts, Sweet Potatoes, and Heirloom Grape Tomatoes – here’s what I came up with for a dinner for two!

First up, Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Walnuts, Dried Cranberries & Gorgonzola.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound Brussels Sprouts, washed, trimmed and quartered
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup crumbled gorgonzola
  • olive oil
  • salt & pepper

I chopped up my brussels sprouts and walnuts and combined them in a baking dish with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.  I used just enough olive oil to coat each brussels sprout, and adjusted the salt and pepper while serving.

I then baked the dish at 350°F for 35 minutes, stirring once halfway through to brown all of the brussels sprouts.  After 35 minutes, I took out the dish and mixed in the dried cranberries, then sprinkled the crumbled gorgonzola on top.  Back into the oven for 10 minutes to melt the cheese and brown the top of the dish.

This random combination of flavors came out perfect!  It was so delicious.

Next up, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes with Thyme.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes (I used heirloom)
  • drizzle of olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • dried thyme

I learned a great new trick while watching Rachel Ray the other day at the gym for how to make roasted cherry tomatoes.  I love roasted tomatoes, and have made them before, but they do come out a little soggy on the bottoms.  Well, Rachel Ray had a great tip – squeeze out the seeds before cooking them and bake them on a cooling rack on a cookie sheet.  Brilliant!

By squeezing out the seeds and cooking them raised above the cookie sheet, they cook much faster and come out a little crisp.  We loved them.

I baked them in the same oven as the brussels sprouts at 350°F for about 30 minutes.

After about 30 minutes (make sure you watch them, as larger the size of the tomato will determine cooking time), they came out shriveled and crisp on top, but still soft and sweet to eat.

Brown Rice with Lemon, Salt & Pepper

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice
  • juice of 1/2 lemon
  • lemon peel from 1 lemon
  • salt and pepper

While the brussels sprouts and tomatoes were roasting away in the oven, I popped some brown rice into my rice cooker to serve alongside the veggies.  Once the rice was cooked, I added the juice of 1/2 lemon, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper to taste.  This rice was a mix from Trader Joes, so it had chopped carrots, peas, etc in it, but you could replace that with any rice or a grain.  I topped the rice with the Oven Roasted Cherry Tomatoes.

Lastly, Sweet Potato with Cinnamon & Coconut Butter.

Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato (or 2 small)
  • 1/2 tbsp coconut butter
  • sprinkle of cinnamon

Once the brussels sprouts went back into the oven to melt the cheese, I popped my sweet potato in the microwave wrapped in a damp paper towel (and with holes poked in the top!) for 7 minutes on high.  Time will vary depending on size of potato and your microwave.  You could also bake the sweet potato in the oven, but I decided on the potato last minute!

After cooking it, I let it sit for a few minutes, then cut it in half and sprinkled it with cinnamon and coconut butter.  The coconut butter melted into the hot potato and the flavors together were delicious!

This was a delicious, well-balanced meal!  I love dinners like this that come together easily and completely randomly, but still taste awesome.  Hope you enjoy!