Sunday, February 23, 2014

Feed A Cold

I had lots of good workout plans for the week, but it seems that I've finally caught whatever varietal of plague has been working its way through my office. When I woke up on Monday morning, my throat was on fire and I felt like someone had filled my head with rocks during the night.  I would have called in sick, but I knew there was just no way I could since my desk looks like it's buried under a paper avalanche.  I bribed myself into going to work with the promise of one of my favorite breakfasts:
Peanut Butter & Banana Waffle
And of course, plenty of coffee.
Rise And Grind!
And to make it even more fun, we got a big, fat snowstorm that afternoon.  Road conditions were deteriorating rapidly and my boss made the decision to send everyone home a few hours early.  I'm really happy he made that call, since my 10 minute drive took 45 minutes and I had a death grip on the steering wheel the whole time.  Once I got home, I felt okay (thanks to some wonderful cold medicine) to head down to The Cave for a short workout.  I did the 30 minute Pump & Burn workout, which you may remember from the early days of the Raise The Bar Challenge, but there was an added twist...I increased my weights by 50%.  The squat and back tracks were manageable, but the chest track was really tough.
The workout was followed by a protein shake and my cold medicine wearing off.  Since I was back to feeling like crap, I threw together a quick, veggie-loaded egg scramble and spent the rest of the evening curled up on the couch under my fuzzy blanket.
Egg/Egg Whites, Spinach, Mushrooms, Onion and Feta
Tuesday brought a warm spell. This is typical of Wisconsin at this time of year...6 inches of snow one day, 40+ degrees the next!  My original plan was to run a few miles on the indoor track, but Mr. R&R and I couldn't let the warm weather pass us by.  We ended up walking about 5 miles through slush and random patches of black ice and stopping for dinner.
Bread Knots

Four Seasons Pizza
I think I got an ab workout just staying on my feet, but it felt so good to get outside after months of being cooped up.

I was still feeling under the weather on Wednesday, so I did a 20 minute core workout (HardCore Abs) and crawled back onto the couch.  I didn't even feel like cooking, so chips/salsa/guacamole became my dinner.  Definitely not the healthiest choice, but it was the only thing that even sounded remotely appealing.

Thursday was definitely the low point in terms of this plague/cold.  I took a rest day, but at least I managed to eat real food for dinner before returning to my position of hibernating under the fuzzy blanket.

BBQ Pork, Sweet Potato w/ Yogurt Ranch, Mixed Veggies
Friday finally rolled around, and not a moment too soon. I walked into the office and the next thing I knew, it was lunch time. Since I didn't have time for breakfast or my morning snack, I pretty much inhaled my turkey sandwich. Later in the afternoon, I managed to scarf down a banana in between putting out fires. I was supposed to have dinner with Little Sister and Tiny Nephew (who is growing like a weed), but I didn't want to take a chance of getting either of them sick, so we're going to reschedule.  My cancelled dinner plans left me with some unexpected free time, so I parked my booty on the trainer for 45 minutes and had a really good ride - 13.45 miles in 45 minutes (17.9 mph average). Dinner was provided by the lovely people at Qdoba since I was desperate for something spicy - since it seems be the only thing that I can taste at the moment.

 Saturday was glorious. Mr. R&R (who is at the beginning of this lovely plague) and I slept really late and spent the entire day in our pajamas.  We were supposed to go to a tamale-making party at Mr. Fix-It and Nacho Nurse's house, but in the interest of not passing this cold on, we stayed home.  I may not have worked out or made a dent in the mountain of laundry that seems to have accumulated, but I did test out a bunch of recipes that I've bookmarked/pinned/downloaded over the last few months.

First up was a black bean burger with Sriracha mayo.  I used a loose interpretation of this recipe.

I think the black bean mixture definitely needs to be refrigerated for a while before forming the patties (I used a metal ring to make sure mine were the same size/shape) since it was a bit on the wet side even though I let the beans dry for quite a while before I tossed them in the food processor.

The next time I make these, I'm going to try toasting the bread crumbs first in hopes of absorbing the excess liquid.  I cooked two of the patties according to the directions and the final product was really delicious...especially when paired with seasoned oven fries and Sriracha mayo (I used a ratio of 1 tbsp Sriracha to 3 tbsp Light Miracle Whip).  Yes...I put a little of the Sriracha mayo on the burger and used the rest for dipping purposes!

Up next was a recipe for Cookie Dough Bars.  These things were pure deliciousness, although I think they should have been called "Cookie Dough Mousse Bars" since the cookie dough center was more mousse-like than dough-like.  They were relatively easy to make. The hardest part was waiting for the center and top layers to set so we could taste them!  Believe me when I say that they're worth the wait...and the dishes.
Please pardon the lousy lighting in my kitchen at night!
Finally, I attempted a popular vegan recipe called "Snobby Joes".  I found the recipe on a blog but I think the recipe may have originated in a vegan cookbook called Veganomicon.
This recipe came together really quickly once the lentils were boiled, drained, and seasoned. I goofed up a little and used 3 tablespoons of mustard instead of one, but based on the taste of the finished product, I'd make the same "mistake" again.  I'd like to try adding a seeded, diced jalapeno or some cayenne pepper for a little more heat next time, but it was pretty damned good the way it was! I also think that next time, I'd cut the recipe in half because it made a ton of food.  I'm going to try freezing some of the leftovers and see how that goes.
Of course, I promptly made my sandwich un-vegan by melting a piece of sharp cheddar over the top since that's how I grew up eating sloppy joes, but you could easily skip the cheese or use soy cheese to keep it vegan.

Now it's Sunday and after a solid day of doing nothing useful, I need to go look over some paperwork for my mom, clean my house, do my laundry, and get ready for another full week.  Hopefully I can cram in a workout too!

Where do you find new recipes? Friends? Blogs? Cookbooks?


April said...

I find my recipes anywhere I can. I collect antique cookbooks!

Anonymous said...

Your snobby joes sound a little like dal puri without the pastry pocket.
Many of my recipes come from The Shiksa. Her blog is where I learned my first traditional recipes.