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Posted on May 11, 2011 in Daily Eats, Food | 10 comments

Daily Eats – 5/11/11

Whassup! Thanks for all your support on me posting these all-food-all-the-time entries. Away we gooooo!

Breakfast

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Oatmeal (227 calories)
– 1 packet Quaker Hearty Medleys Cranberry Almond oatmeal (130 calories)
– 1 tsp chia seeds (33 calories)
– 1 tsp milled flaxseed (14 calories)
– 1 tbsp raw oats (10 calories)
– 2 tbsp sugared strawberries (~40 calories)

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1/4 blueberry bagel (a very classy ~75 calories)

Breakfast Total: 302 calories

I also had brought an apple to eat but after one bite I decided I didn’t want it anymore so… yeah.

Lunch

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Salad (133 calories)
– 1.5 cup baby spinach (10 calories)
– Red onion (~7 calories)
– 1 tsp blue cheese crumbles (20 calories)
– 1/2 tsp chia seeds (17 calories)
– 1 tsp olive oil (40 calories)
– 2 tbsp sugared strawberries (~40 calories)

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Sushi (~165 calories)
– 5 pieces, various rolls

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Side (170 calories)
– 20 baby carrots (70 calories)
~2.5 tbsp garlic hummus (100 calories)

Lunch Total: 468 calories

Snack

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-Medjool date w/PB (~35 calories)

Snack Total: 35 calories

Dinner

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Summer Roll – 3 pieces (~100 calories?)

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Pad Thai Shrimp (~700 calories?)

I met up with some friends at Sweet Rice that I hadn’t seen in forever! It was great to catch up. I can’t be sure of exactly how many calories dinner was, but after some intense Googling I think that this estimate is probably pretty close. Good thing I counted all my earlier calories so I don’t feel toooooo guilty…

Dinner Total: ~800 calories

Total Total (heh): 1,605 calories. Score! Not too bad at all. But tomorrow I swear I am cooking at home! Be sure to tune in tomorrow for a full Sweet Rice recap. ‘Til then, goodnight!

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Posted on Mar 2, 2011 in Food | 9 comments

Scary Foods Dinner Attempt #1

Good morning, everyone. So, in an attempt to broaden my culinary horizons, my latest trips to the grocery store have included the sincere attempt to buy what I like to call my “scary foods”, which are foods that fall into one of the following categories:

1) Foods I haven’t liked in the past;
2) Foods I haven’t tried in the past;
3) Foods I have never been able to successfully cook for myself.

Last night, I attempted to actually make a palatable dish out of a few of my scary foods. On the docket were:

Brussels sprouts (category 1),

Kale (category 2),

Tofu (category 3).

I decided that the best way for me to tackle these strange, unfamiliar ingredients (well, except tofu – my mom makes awesome tofu dishes that I’ve never been able to replicate!) was to cook them up in a style that I’m veeeery familiar with: Thai!

Specifically, Thai green curry! YUM. Enter the other players:

I made a supah quick marinade for the tofu using low-sodium soy sauce, lemon juice, garlic, crystalized ginger, and sriracha. Then, the curry sauce itself was made utilizing a green curry paste and a can of light coconut milk. You whisk the latter two together in a pan on the stove, and then I added a green bell pepper, red onion, and some stemmed kale to cook in the sauce.

Tossed the tofu into a pan with a little coconut and olive oil, and let it do it’s thing before adding it to the curry sauce and vegetables to let it all simmer together (and let the curry sauce reduce slightly):

As you can see in the sprouts picture above, I tried roasting the b. sprouts in the oven with some olive oil and salt. They didn’t end up being a part of the curry itself. After everything was done I piled it into a bowl with some quinoa that I cooked up in the rice cooker (another past scary food, but one that I’ve since conquered and come to <3):



Verdict?

Well, the curry was great. I mean, of course it was – curry IS great, haha. But the tofu turned out really well, so I was quite pleased! I think in the past the reason why I haven’t been successful with my tofu dishes is because I didn’t allow the tofu to really cook long enough. So I let it be for a long time just sizzling away until the edges got browned and it tasted really good. I think the marinade made a big difference too (tofu in and of itself doesn’t have much flavor.)

The kale also tasted good in the curry sauce. It is a little more of a substantial green than spinach or chard is — chewier, I guess. But I can definitely see myself eating this green a lot more in the future, which is good because it’s a superfood, right?

Unfortunately, the sprouts were the least successful part of the meal. I declare that I am not a Brussels sprout convert. I didn’t even finish eating all of the ones in my bowl (and I have like a gajillion leftover!) I think that I *want* to like them more than I ever really will (I see ’em all the time on other healthy living/food blogs and I want to be part of the gang!) I think I had read that roasting them is the best way to make them, but they just have this kind of bitter, sour flavor to them that I don’t think I’ll ever get on board with. Maybe if I doused them in BBQ sauce or something… if any of you have a magical b. sprout recipe that you think will change my mind, please share it with me! I’d be willing to give them one more chance but right now, the odds aren’t stacked in their little green, brainy-lookin’ favor.

Anyway, that was my food adventure for last night! I brought the leftover curry for lunch today, so I’m excited to revisit it (mad love for leftovers for lunch — sandwiches schmandwiches!) I have another exciting-slash-fairly-disgusting health thing that I’m currently pursuing, so I need to determine whether or not I have the ‘nards to actually blog about it, hahahaha. Stay tuned!

PS – I created a new page under the “About Me” section of the blog, all about the pupsters! Have you checked it out yet?

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Posted on Feb 13, 2011 in Dear Diary, Food, Pup Posts | 1 comment

Delawhere?

Gretchen and Daxter
Photo by Steve (via Flickr)

Ready for the weekend update, y’all? Well, ready or not, here it comes because I’ve got a lot to get through.

Friday I pulled a non-Gretchen and went out with my roommate Erin and friend Amanda to see our friends’ awesome band Flow in the Dark at the Tortoise & Hare in Arlington. (Whew! That is a lot of hyperlinks, haha.) I was actually looking forward to getting out and about, and even made a tiny bit of an effort to get dolled up:

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I feel like I look skinny in this picture so I couldn’t resist posting it! Haha, it’s okay, I’m fully aware of how vain I am, you don’t have to tell me. 🙂 While out at the bar, I also got to play a game called “Things I Will NOT Be Wearing Even When I Do Get Skinny Enough to Pull Them Off”:

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No, your eyes are not deceiving you. That is an electric blue micro mini tube dress paired with thigh-high boots. Sigh. Anyway!

Saturday I headed down to Southern Delaware to see Steve. We had a sort-of early Valentine’s Day-ish dinner and watched Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone! He had never seen any of the Harry Potter movies (and hasn’t read the books) — mostly refusing to do so on principle — so I was very excited to find out that he had Netflixed the movie to watch with me. What a sacrifice! 😛

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He took me out for Thai food, which is number two on my top ethnic foods list (beat out by Sushi of course.) It was delicious! We shared an appetizer platter that had some chicken satay, steamed dumplings, and spring rolls, and I also had a Tom Kha Gai soup:

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It was yumtastic – spicy, lemongrassy, yumyumyum. My entree was one of their Valentine’s menu specials, Duck Panang Curry! Yeah, I know it was a lot of coconut milk which is really high in fat but… oh well. I’m going to side with the “it’s a super good kind of fat” way of thinking for right now. 🙂

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Sorry for the weird coloring of the photos there — iPhone + dim lighting, you know how it goes. Anyway, the curry was really yummy but SUPER spicy! I guess the level of spiciness for a panang curry really depends on the restaurant, because I don’t usually consider panang to be a particularly spicy curry but daaaaaaaang. Oh yeah, and Steve got the pad thai:

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It was really good, but I think I like Pilin’s pad thai a teensy bit better.

Today we took a little tour around Lewes, Delaware which is a historic small town a little bit back from the beaches (Rehoboth & Dewey) to take some photos and walk Daxter around since I brought him with me on this trip. We even ran into another miniature schnauzer on the street, hehe! I’ll try to make light on the wordiness, but here are some photos I took:

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That last picture is actually the truck of the owner of Dogfish Head Brewery which is originally from Milton, DE (where Steve lives.) I really want to take a tour of the brewery sometime, since their beer is awesome! Since I’m on a mostly alcohol-free kick right now as part of my diet though, it might have to wait a smidge.

Anyway, after a long car ride back, Harry and Daxter are happily reunited and sleeping on my bed, and I’m downing a beast of a salad for dins:

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In the mix is a crapton of greens, a green bell pepper, a little bit of avocado, some red onion, and some green grapes. A lotta green, but hey — green is good, right? I sprinkled some lemon juice, salt & pepper, and a teensyweensy drizzle of olive oil on top, and also topped it off with some of my homemade hummus! It was my first time making hummus, and I think it turned out pretty well actually (even though I didn’t have any tahini, so can it still count as hummus without tahini? It still tasted good to me!)

Okay, I think that has sufficiently brought us up to speed here. Whew! Hope you made it through that mess ok, and that everyone’s weekend was great! Tomorrow’s weigh-in will *hopefully* bring me under 200 (!!) but I don’t want to count my chickens before… well, you get the gist. Tune in then! 🙂

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Posted on Jan 2, 2011 in Dear Diary, Food | 1 comment

hello [2011] goodbye [2010]

Happy New Year from Honey, I Shrunk the Gretchen!

Happy New Year!

I spent a nice, fairly low-key New Year with family and friends, and it was just perfect. We spent our evening in Falls Church, which is evidently now going as “The Little City”:

Falls Church or Bust!

The night started off with my family (minus Ben, plus Steve) getting our grub on at Pilin, a local Thai restaurant. We had a chicken satay to share amongst the table, and then I had a Tom Ka Gai – lemongrass and coconut milk soup with chicken and veggies:

Tom Yum Gai

My main course? What else:

Pad Thai Shrimp

A perfect shrimp Pad Thai. Not too greasy, not too heavy, but perfectly satisfying and yum-o. My favorite thing to get when dining a la Thai is actually panang curry, but I *tried* to be good and not get something totally creamy and coconut-y (veeeery high in fat, but allegedly it’s the good kind of fat!)

After dinner, we traipsed the 20 feet from the restaurant to watch Ben and his band, Judo Chop, in action!

Judo Chop!
Rock out with your...

They headlined the night’s festivities and were awesome (and it was such a riot to see the band’s teenage groupies screaming in the front row, talking about how in love with my brother they are, hahaha!)

We ended the night at Ireland’s Four Provinces, a local Irish Pub (duh) and favorite haunt, with a champagne toast and some new year paraphernalia.

Bubbly
Surprise!

I hope everyone had a fantastic New Year celebration, and kicked off 2011 well! After reading through all 62 unread items on my Google Reader prior to posting this, I decided that I’d contribute to the apparent blogosphere trend of saying what my goals for 2011 are. I’m only going to concentrate on the two biggies here, since I’m not a huge fan of the whole New Year Resolution thing (talk about setting yourself up for failure!) but here are the main points:

1. Continue on my weight-loss journey and lose an additional 30 – 40 pounds. I’ve already lost 40 pounds off of my original weight of 246 (huzzah!), so now it’s time to really crank it into gear and finish this thing!

Originally, I was pretty set on a “goal weight” number: 165, plucked fairly arbitrarily out of my idea of what would be appropriate for me. My new goal isn’t necessarily going to be centered around an exact number. Instead, I’m going to concentrate on being healthy while being able to stay happy. Whether that ends up being 160 or 175, I’ll keep you posted. 🙂

2. Continue working towards my fitness goals and run an 8k and a 10k race before the end of the year. I completed my very first 5k race this past Thanksgiving, and would also like to run another 5k with a much better time. I finished in about 41 minutes without stopping the first, time, and bare minimum I’d like to finish in 39 minutes or under next time around.

Happy 2011, everyone! 2010 was great, and I made some very important life decisions that have put me in a much better place now as compared to last January, so here’s to hoping that I keep up that trend! What are some of your resolutions/goals for the new year? I’d love to hear about ’em!

Happy Powell New Year!

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Posted on Aug 18, 2010 in Weight Loss | 4 comments

Ouch.

So take a look at this hot mess. Yep, that ankle on the bottom, that is one swollen ankle. Ignore the weird color that the flash turned my skin. This is the aftereffect of me missing the last step on the stairs because I was carrying too much laundry and couldn’t see. Brilliant, right? I missed the step and landed right on my ankle. Hard. Needless to say I didn’t make it Zumba last night, but hopefully I’ll be in rip-rarin’ condition by next Wednesday and can try it out then.

Other than that, however, I’ve actually been having a pretty good day! I had a bit of a challenge at lunch because my coworkers and I went to a Thai restaurant (if you’ve never been to Busara out by Tysons, you should try it out! Not my absolute favorite Thai place, but pretty good and sooooo convenient) to welcome a new member to our team. I ended up getting the Gai Pad Pak, which is a chicken and vegetable dish in a soy-ish broth. It was really good and seemed fairly light. I only ate half my portion of rice as well. I was a sucker though, and I got a mango sticky rice for dessert. Now, the mango I ate was fresh and juicy and delicious, but the sticky rice is made with coconut milk, which is super high in fat. I didn’t eat all the rice, and it was totally worth it for the deliciousness in my mouth, but still. Felt a little guilty.

I meant to blog my low-fat fajita recipe yesterday but got sidetracked by complete and total exhaustion, so that’s still to come, I promise, I promise. I also really want to try making my own whole wheat english muffins because I’ve become addicted to them as a breakfast staple but they’re kind of expensive (plus I already bought a thing of whole wheat flour to play with!) Anybody have any ideas? I’ve found some recipes online but none of them provide nutritional information, like calorie or fat content. Not sure how I would calculate that for myself either, other than just adding the numbers of all the ingredients and splitting it by the number of servings I make. Guess this is the world of food preparation that I need to learn!

Obviously my activity level is somewhat limited due to my current injury (it’s not an excuse, I swear!) but hopefully this won’t deter me too much this week. At least I went to the gym yesterday, and did ALL my laundry, including sheets and towels, which was a workout in itself re-making my bed. Here’s hoping I make a speedy recovery and can literally be back on my feet again!

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