Monday, 15 October 2012 14:54

Spaghetti Squash Lasagna

I had made spaghetti squash a few days earlier and I didn't know what to do with it.  I did not want to just re-heat it and toss some veggies onto it.  I didn't feel like having rice with it.  Making it into a pasta dish was not at the top of my list so I decided that I could make a lasagna with it.  A day earlier I had made some gravy for pizza so I had that readily available and there are always vegetables in the refrigerator and so making this was going to be easy. I also wanted it to have a sort of sausage taste to it so I decided to make crumbled tempeh sausage as an added layer and then it really hit me.  Why not bake two eggs on top of it all to get a breakfast spaghetti squash lasagna.  Can you tell I was hungry and had just finished swimming?  When you finish swimming you want to eat anything and everything.  And on this day I made this lasagna that was incredibly delicious.  Here is my recipe:  

Spaghetti Squash Lasagna

Ingredients: 2 eggs, 150g Spaghetti Squash (already cooked), 1/3 block Tempeh (crumbled), 50g Crimini Mushrooms (chopped), 50g Asparagus (chopped), 50g Italian Squash (chopped), 50g Zucchini (chopped), Gravy (marinara sauce - I use Pomi and reduce it with honey and carrots and Italian Seasoning)

Nutritional Information: 406 calories, 35g Carbs, 16g Fat, 35g Protein

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 355* (if you have not already made the spaghetti squash then cut it in half and remove seeds.  Place in oven and bake for 40 minutes)
  2. In baking dish coat bottom with a layer of the red gravy.
  3. Top red gravy with 1/3 (50g) of the spaghetti squash.
  4. Top spaghetti squash with 1/2 of the mushrooms, asparagus, italian squash, zucchini and red gravy.
  5. Repeat steps 3 and 4.
  6. Top the last layer of veggies with the last of the spaghetti squash and put in oven to bake for 15 minutes.
  7. While lasagna is baking cook the tempeh in a pan with cumin, fennel, rosemary and thyme (dried herbs but use just a pinch of each)
  8. After 15 minutes remove the baking dish from the oven. Top the lasagna with the tempeh.
  9. Made 2 wells in the tempeh and crack one egg in each well.
  10. Sprinkle salt and pepper onto the eggs and place back in the oven for 10 minutes.
  11. Remove the lasagna after 10 minutes and apply sriracha or your favorite hot sauce to the mixture.
  12. Dig in.

Be careful though.....it is going to be hot.

What Have You Made With Spaghetti Squash?

[caption id="attachment_6614" align="aligncenter" width="300"]SpaghettiSquashLasagna_dinner_recipe_vegetarian A layer of cheese may add a little bit extra to this meal[/caption]  
Published in Lunch Recipes
Friday, 07 September 2012 15:00

Homemade Naan Bread Recipe

Naan is an leavened, oven-baked flat bread that was created in India but has permeated most of Asia and the Middle East.  I first discovered Naan about two years ago when I was grocery shopping and it looked tasty and cheaper than a whole loaf of bread.  I tried it out and loved it.  I made everything with Naan.  I would put it in the oven and get it very crispy and use it in place of pita for hummus.  I would use it as a vehicle for pizza.  I would spread peanut butter and jelly on it.  There was nothing I wouldn’t eat with Naan.

Eventually I got away from it because I started paying more and more attention to the ingredients on the food I was purchasing.  When I flipped over the package I was in shock.  Bread is rather simple to make and should use simple ingredients.  The only thing you should see is flour, water, yeast, honey or sugar.  Nothing more than that is necessary.  Some people will use eggs, oil and milk but they are not necessary.  Here is what was on the back of the package of Naan that I used to buy:

Stoneground whole wheat flour, enriched wheat flour (wheat flour, ascorbic acid as dough conditioner, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, enzymes, folic acid), buttermilk (skim milk, dry buttermilk, bacterial culture), water, canola and/or soybean oil, wheat bran, sugar, baking powder (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, corn starch, monocalcium phosphate), salt, dextrose, ghee (clarified butter), wheat germ, dextrin, vinegar, vegetable fiber, yeast.

 

What is all this stuff?  Seriously why is all this stuff in there?  And the answer is simple:  It has to seem ‘fresh’ when you buy it 30 days after its made.  I started looking around for recipes and they all seemed rather difficult with all this and that and the other thing.  I learned from making rye bagels that it is not that hard so stop over thinking it and just make it.  If it comes out horrible then throw it out and start over, it isn’t the end of the world.

Yesterday I tinkered and on my first shot it came out great.  It had the little burn marks on there.  It had the lightness and soft texture to it.  I used it for a vegetable pizza and the other half I am using this evening for a scrambled egg with veggie and tempeh Indian taco (or frybread.)

Naan Recipe

Ingredients: 1.5c whole wheat flour, 3/4c warm water, 1 package of active dry yeast, 1 Tbsp honey, 1 tsp oil

Servings: 4

Nutritional Information (Per Serving): 186 calories, 40g Carbs, 1g Fat, 7g Protein

Directions:

  1. Place yeast in a large bowl and add the warm water.  Whisk in honey after 1-2 minutes of adding water.
  2. Allow to sit for 8-10 minutes to allow yeast to work.  You will be able to smell the yeast and see the foam.
  3. Add flour in 1/2c portions and stir until well combined and dough begins to pull away from bowl.
  4. In a separate bowl add 1 tsp of oil and spread with paper towel so that bowl is covered.
  5. Add dough to oiled bowl and cover with kitchen towel for a minimum of 1 hour.  I allowed it to proof for over 2 hours.
  6. After the dough has risen (it should at least double in size) use a knife to cut into 4 sections.
  7. Pre-heat griddle over medium-high heat
  8. Dust work surface with flour and roll out dough until it is 1/4″ thick.
  9. Once dough is rolled out to desired thickness place on griddle and allow to cook.  Flip over when smoke starts to emerge from bread.
  10. Repeat steps 8 and 9 until all the Naan is cooked.
  11. Serve with your favorite recipe and enjoy.
Published in Breakfast Recipes
Thursday, 23 August 2012 11:30

Thanksgiving In August

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.  There is something about getting together with family and friends that doesn't involve gift exchanges that makes it my favorite.  There is no gift better than yours and no feelings of guilt other than I should not have eaten that 5 slice of pumpkin pie.  Lately my love for Thanksgiving has grown because there are no commercials in August telling me to get ready for Christmas shopping.  There is no Black Friday with Thanksgiving.  It is just about sitting around the table and eating food with family and watching football until you fall asleep that I love so much. Where am I going with this?  On Wednesday I was on my way to pick up Chico and started thinking about what I wanted to make for dinner.  I originally had planned to make sweet potato, banana, avocado waffles.  Yes, I was going to mash those altogether into the batter but then realized that I did not have any avocado left and did not want to stop to pick any up.  So as I was driving I started to think about what went well with sweet potato into a batter.  That is when it hit me that I could make Thanksgiving waffles.  It would be easy to and as it turns out pretty tasty as well. Here is my recipe for Thanksgiving In August, or really any month.

Thanksgiving Day Waffles

Ingredients: 1/2c Arrowhead Mills Oat Flour Pancake and Waffle Mix, 1/2c Water, 1/3c corn kernals, 1 Tbsp dried cranberries, 40g Sweet Potato, 100g Brussels Sprouts, 50g Asparagus, Cinnamon, Honey, Sriracha

Nutritional Information: 396 calories, 70g Carbs, 5g Fat, 15g Protein

Directions:

  1. Peel the sweet potato then place it in a bowl with some water and microwave for 1 minute 30 seconds
  2. In a separate bowl combine the flour and water and combine well.
  3. After sweet potato has cooled down a bit mash with a fork and then combine with batter, dried cranberries and corn.
  4. Slice brussels sprouts in half and chop asparagus and place in hot pan to brown (no need for oil)
  5. Scoop 1/3 cup of batter onto hot waffle iron and cook to manufacturer's directions.
  6. After brussels sprouts and asparagus have browned place on plate and top with sriracha.
  7. After waffles have cooked through plate them topped with cinnamon and honey.

This is a great way to celebrate Thanksgiving in August. 

Published in Breakfast Recipes
Thursday, 16 August 2012 14:09

Chilaquiles El Diablo Recipe

Chilaquiles are typically made with a salsa verde and eggs.  I decided to change it up a bit last night and make it with a spicy salsa as well as with tofu.  Using tofu instead of eggs makes this a truly vegan meal and it is perfect for breakfast, lunch, dinner, brunch or brinner (yes that is a meal.....having breakfast for dinner that is.) I find that Mexican cuisine lends itself perfectly to a vegetarian / vegan diet and so I find myself making lots of Mexican style dishes for dinner.  The other cuisine that I find that is perfect for a vegetarian / vegan diet is Italian.  When you think about these two styles of cooking you notice that tacos are great as veggie options or even just black beans.  Quesadillas, burritos, empanadas are all terrific when made purely vegetarian.  For Italian dishes eggplant parmigiana comes to mind.  A pasta dish with broccolini and asparagus and mushrooms is perfect.  If you are feeling like a chef you can make a veggie risotto or use polenta cakes as the base for vegetables on top. Anyway, back to my dinner from last night:  Chilaquiles El Diablo.  I fell in love with chilaquiles when I was in Cozumel with Karen and found it on the menu.  The idea of combining tortillas, salsa verde, vegetables and eggs (at the time chorizo too) just sounded absolutely phenomenal.  In the past I have made them with my own salsa verde but I just finished reading tweets between Dickers and JeffBot about srirahca that made me want something spicy and so I came up with this recipe for the sauce.

Chilaquiles El Diablo

Ingredients: 1/2c whole wheat flour, 2o0g Tomatillos, 2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, 1/2 medium avocado, 1/2c water, 1/4 block extra firm tofu, 60g zucchini, 100g Peppers (any colors), 50g White Onion (chopped), 80g Banana Pepper (chopped), dash of: cumin, coriander, oregano Nutritional Information: 528 calories, 80g Carbs, 15g Fat, 24g Protein (60% Carbs, 24% Fat, 16% Protein) Directions:

  1. In a blender combine tomatillos, chipotle peppers, avocado and water.  Blend until well combined.
  2. Pour el diablo sauce into a pan on low heat and let it start the reduction process.
  3. In a food processor combine flour with 4 tbsp of water and allow a dough to form.
  4. While dough is forming chop your vegetables and add them to your el diablo sauce.
  5. After dough has come together cut into 3 sections and roll out tortillas.
  6. Cook tortillas in a hot pan until some char forms.
  7. While tortillas are cooking crumble the tofu into the el diablo sauce and add cumin, coriander and oregano.
  8. Once tortillas are ready cut into triangles and add to your sauce.  Toss to coat the tortillas and allow the sauce to heat up over the tortillas.
  9. Spoon the chilaquiles el diablo onto a plate and top with avocado chunks and cilantro.

Enjoy!  In case you need further inspiration to make Mexican food, check out this link from The Huffington Post for various tacos.

Published in Lunch Recipes
Wednesday, 25 July 2012 14:22

Mexican Waffles - Part Of Eats Week3

Mexican Waffles?  What could that be?  Well, I'm here to tell you that it could possibly be the best breakfast food I have ever made.  There was sweet and spicy.  There was cool and heat.  Then of course there was the fact that is was perfect for a recovery meal. As you know I love breakfast food and it doesn't matter what time of the day I eat it, as it always tastes great.  After seeing the show The Best Thing I Ever Ate I was inspired to make these waffles, but I couldn't make them in the middle of the week because it had to be a treat.  The day came when on Saturday I had a 3.5 hour ride and 20 minute race pace run.  I was so excited about these waffles that I set a PR on my 60 mile course by getting it done in 3h12m.  Normally I would have kept going for the remaining 18 minutes but the waffles were calling my name.  I got the run done and then practically raced home to get going on the waffles.  It was perfect. Here is the recipe for the Mexican Waffles: Ingredients: 1/2c Grapevine Grains Pancake Mix (click on the link to order and enter CTER for a 10% discount), 1 ear roasted corn on the cob, 1/4c black beans (drained and rinsed), 0.5c water, 1 medium tomato (sliced), 2 thin slices red onion, 50g cucumber, 1 small avocado, 1 small jalapeno, bunch cilantro, 1c water Nutritional Information: 381 calories, 75g Carbs, 4g Fat, 14g Protein Directions:

  1. Preaheat oven to 405* and place corn in oven while still in husk.  Allow to roast for approximately 20 minutes.
  2. In food processor combine cucumber, avocado, jalapeno and water and combine until it forms a loose soup.
  3. In a separate bowl combine mix with black beans and let sit until corn is done cooking.
  4. Toward end of 20 minutes of corn roasting turn on waffle iron and allow to pre-heat.
  5. Remove corn from oven and slice kernels from the cob and add approximately 1/2 of the kernels to the batter.
  6. Once mix with beans and corn is well combined.
  7. Pour batter onto waffle iron and allow to cook per manufacturer's directions.
  8. While waffles are cooking assemble platter by adding sliced tomato and red onion alternatively while adding corn and 1 Tbsp of avocado soup over top.
  9. After waffles are cooked place on plate and sprinkle another 1 Tbsp of the avocado soup over top of the waffles.
  10. Serve with a cup of hot coffee or tea and orange juice.  If it's late enough in the day serve with Corona.
 
Published in Breakfast Recipes
Monday, 16 July 2012 14:14

Pork Adobada Recipe - Well Not Exactly

Pork adobada is a very simple meal and one that I was inspired to make after watching Diners, Drive-In and Dives on Food Network.  Speaking of Triple D.....how is it that Guy Fieri doesn't weight 900 pounds right now?  Have you ever watched the show?  He eats at every restaurant and typically samples 2-3 meals and with 3 restaurants per show we are looking at 6-9 tastings.  I know that he isn't eating the whole thing, at least on camera, but he is also not eating salads.  He has clearly gotten bigger since the show started but I wonder how he doesn't look even bigger. Anyway, back to pork adobada and how it inspired me.  After watching Guy Fieri down the taco I immediately knew I wanted to make one.  The taco that he was eating was so simple I knew this would take no time at all to make.  The taco did not have lettuce, tomato, avocado or cheese.  It has the tortilla, the meat, onions and cilantro.  Simple and we all know simple food tastes great. I thought about what I like to have as seasoning and went to work.  I took out the chili powder, cumin, cloves, coriander, ginger and a head of garlic.  I thought that this would be enough to get the work done.  Then as I was grabbing the garlic I noticed I had half a lemon and half a lime and took those out as well. When all was said and done I could not have been happier with the outcome of this dish.  Simple, easy and super tasty. Oh and yes it was vegan.....I swapped out the pork for tempeh and it was fabulous. Here is the recipe:

Tempeh Adobada

Ingredients: 1/3 block Westsoy Tempeh (crumbled), 1/2c Whole Wheat Flour, 5 Tbsp Water, 0.5Tbsp Chili Powder, 0.5Tbsp Cumin, 0.5T Oregano, 0.5tsp garlic powder, 0.5tsp ground cloves, 0.5tsp ground coriander, 0.5tsp ground ginger, 1 Tbsp roasted garlic, Juice of 1/2 Lemon and Juice of 1/2 Lime, 100g White Onion chopped, Bunch of cilantro chopped. Servings:1 Nutritional Information: 398 calories, 60g Carbs, 8g Fat, 24g Protein Directions:

  1. In bowl combine all the spices and roasted garlic.
  2. In a pan of boiling water add crumbled tempeh and allow to soften for 3-5 minutes.  Remove tempeh and drain then add to bowl with spices.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and put in fridge to marinate for at least 3 hours but 24 hours would be better.
  4. In a food processor add in the whole wheat flour.
  5. Cover and turn on food processor.  Through lid drizzle in water and allow food processor to do the work until a dough ball forms.
  6. Remove dough and sprinkle work surface with a dusting of flour and then roll out tortillas.
  7. While working on the tortillas heat up a a griddle on high heat.
  8. Once tortillas are rolled out to desired thickness place on griddle and allow to cook through.  Approximately 2-3 minutes per side.
  9. After tortillas are done place on plate and cover each tortilla with paper towel.  Can get up to 3 tortillas out of this dough depending on how big you want them.
  10. While tortillas rest place tempeh on griddle and begin to cook until a crust forms.  This should take about 5-10 minutes.
  11. Place tempeh adodada mixture onto each tortilla and then add fresh chopped white onion and cilantro.

This is so easy and simple to make and it has the perfect amount of spice to it. [gallery link="file" columns="4" orderby="rand"]

Published in Lunch Recipes
Thursday, 19 July 2012 15:46

The Sh*t I Do Eat

Yesterday I posted More Sh*t To Avoid which was a follow-up to Sh*t I'm Never Eating Again and one of the comments from Jeff Irvin over at Dangle The Carrot was to do a post on sh*t we can actually eat and that it would be a short post. With that in mind I am posting my dinners from the past week.  This is the foods that I do eat and an interesting thing occurred to me this week while I was following this diet.  I gained weight, and yes a part of that can be attributed to the Ultra-Sherpa'ing I did for Karen during her El Scorcho 50K.  I was eating to stay awake but in looking at my food journal I notice that I was incorporating a lot of whole grains in my meals.  Normally I may have a serving of whole grains per day, but that wasn't the case in the past week.  There were days where I had 3 servings (breakfast: slice of Alvarado St Rye Bread with sliced bananas.  Lunch: Sandwich on Alvarado St Rye bread.  Dinner: Tempeh Adobada with homemade tortillas made with whole wheat flour. Once I noticed this I adjusted my intake and dropped nearly 3 lbs in two days.  Amazing what a small change in your diet can result in. So the results from the announcement of D-Day: Determination Day are as follows:

  • Weight Loss: 4 lbs
  • Body Fat: Down 3%
  • Muscle Mass: Up 2 lbs

Things are taking shape for a good presentation at Rev3 OOB on August 26th. 

Published in Athlete's Plate
Monday, 11 June 2012 14:11

Quinoa and Chickpea Veggie Burger

Quinoa and Chickpeas are two of my favorite foods.  They are both packed with nutrients and protein and very good for you.  I have had some chickpeas in my fridge for a few days and thought I might make a veggie burger out of them, but didn't think it would be enough.  I knew I had quinoa in the pantry so why not combine two of my favorite foods into a burger.  What could go wrong? As I took them both out along with the food processor, I proceeded to take out the sriracha sauce and other ingredients.  Those other items were red cabbage, which I think deserves its own food group.  Red cabbage is incredibly crunchy and is something I use as a replacement for lettuce in my tacos.  Maybe some romaine lettuce, jalapeno and roasted red peppers?  Sounds good doesn't it.  Well let me tell you it was good.  So good in fact that Karen, who almost never wants to eat my food because it is too spicy too a bite and then said if I get full she would eat it.  I gave her half of it but as is typical she could only eat so much because it was too spicy.  Maybe it was the red onion? Anyway, I figured since I posted a picture of the creation last night on Twitter and got two immediate questions:  Is the recipe on your blog?  That I would post it her for you all today.  Maybe you'll go out and make it tonight.

Quinoa and Chickpea Spicy Veggie Burger

Ingredients: 1/2c chickpeas (drained and rinsed), 1/4c quiona (dry), 3/4c water, 1 Tbsp diced jalapeno, 2 Tbsp Panko bread crumbs, 1/4" thick slice of red onion, 1/4 red bell pepper (roasted), 1/4" thick slice of red cabbage, 4 Romaine lettuce leaves, Whole Grain Mustard, Sriracha Nutritional Information: 353 calories, 66g Carbs, 3g Fat, 12g Protein Directions:

  1. In pot toast quinoa for 1-3 minutes then add water. Cover and bring to a boil then simmer until steam holes form in the quinoa.  You want this to have some water left in it so when you put the quinoa in the food processor it blends well.
  2. In food process put 1/4c of chickpeas and blend until it is a paste like consistency.
  3. Add in remaining chickpeas, jalapenos and quinoa.  Pulse food processor until chickpeas have blended but are still somewhat chunky.
  4. In food processor bowl add in bread crumbs and combine.  Then form a patty.
  5. In a hot pan add a spray of coconut oil and then drop in patty.
  6. While patty is browning begin to assemble plate.  Place Romaine leaved down topped by red cabbage.
  7. On top of red cabbage add the quinoa and chickpea patty followed by red onion and roasted red pepper.
  8. Top with mustard and sriracha and enjoy.

[caption id="attachment_6037" align="aligncenter" width="225" caption="The Key Is The Sriracha Sauce"]quinoa_chickpea_veggie_burger_recipe[/caption]

Published in Lunch Recipes
Tuesday, 13 December 2011 18:36

Vega Sport Nutrition Review

[caption id="attachment_4861" align="alignright" width="230" caption="Vega Sport Sampler Pack"]vega-sport-vegan-vegetarian-sports-nutrition[/caption] Vega Sports Nutrition contacted me and asked if I would like to review their product.  As a vegetarian I was instantly interested in seeing these products first hand.  I had seen advertisements for them as well as had seen that Brendan Brazier had created the product.  Mr Brazier is a vegan professional triathlete who has an 8th place finish at Ironman Utah in 2002.  He is also the author of Thrive: A Guide to Optimal Health and Performance through a plant-based diet.  So as you can see it was not a stretch for me to not only want to know more but to try out these products. Vega was sent to me in this terrific box that opened up into 4 quadrants that showed the products broken down into its three components.  Those components consisted of Prepare, Sustain, Recover.   [caption id="attachment_4857" align="alignright" width="252" caption="Pre-Workout Energizer"]vega-sport-pre-workout-energizer[/caption] Prepare There were two flavors included in the sampler pack (lemon-lime and acai berry.)  The package states that you should mix the powder with 1 cup of cold water and consume 20 minutes prior to a workout.  Following the directions I started to shake the contents of my water bottle fully expecting to see a yellowish color and to my surprise I saw what could best be described as a murky color. Standing in front of my sink it took a few minutes to decide if I really wanted to consume this product.  As we all know we eat with our eyes first and my eyes were telling me to put it down and walk away as fast as possible.  My mind however told me to drink it and see what I thought.  As I put the water bottle to my lips I was wondering if the taste would match the color and pleasantly it did not. The flavor of lemon-lime came right through and made me forget about the color of the water I was drinking. Since I have switched to drinking my calories before a workout  this worked for me.  If you are a person who has trouble holding down food before working out I suggest you give this product a try.  If you are a vegetarian or a vegan who has been eating peanut butter on an english muffin before a race or workout I would suggest giving this a try to see how your energy is sustained.  I used the Prepare prior to a long swim set and felt strong throughout with no feeling or exhaustion.     [caption id="attachment_4858" align="alignright" width="272" caption="Vega Sport Endurance Bar"]vega-sport-endurance-bar[/caption] Sustain In the package came a Gel, a Hydrator and a Bar.  I would liken the hydrator to Nuun in that it has a subtle taste and fizz.  I did not use the Gel as none of my workouts recently have been long enough to incorporate a Gel into, but I did use the bar during a trainer ride.  This was going to be new for me because since mid-summer I have switched to all liquid nutrition while on the bike and it has suited me very well.  Since I was going to be on the trainer and not far from my house (trainer is in the garage) should I have needed to use the bathroom I would not have to worry about where to stop. I chose to use the Chocolate Mocha (it is also available in Acai Berry) about an hour into a 1.5 hour ride.  The texture of the bar was like most bars that are on the market.  It was chewy and had just enough sweetness to it to curb any cravings but not feel like it would send you into insulin shock.  The mocha flavor left a little to be desired in that I was expecting a strong coffee flavor than what I got.  As a person who loves his coffee it left me wanting that taste.  It settled well in my stomach and was not like other bars I had been using on the bike and not sit like a brick. If you are a person that eats during a bike ride I would recommend switching to these bars as they are not heavy.  As I enter into Ironman training I will experiment with consuming these bars during the first 3 hours of a ride and then switch to all liquid for the last 3 hours.  I have read other blogs and their recommendations have been to eat on the bike in the first half.  I had been eschewing this advice since none of the bars I was consuming was sitting well, but with 190 calories I can consume 2 bars in the first 3 hours along with a drink to get the necessary calories without that heavy feeling.   [caption id="attachment_4859" align="alignright" width="273" caption="Vega Sport Protein Bar"]vega-sport-protein-bar[/caption] Recover The Recover portion of Vega Sports comes with three products.  Recover Accelerator is recommended to be taken within 20 minutes of finishing exercise as it has  a 4:1 Carb:Protein ratio which will help maximize your recovery.  The Performance Protein is recommended to be consumed 30 to 90 minutes upon completion and even throughout the day.  I chose the Protein Bar after my 1.5 hour trainer ride and supplemented it with 2 egg whites on a slice of toasted Ezekiel Sprouted Bread. The bar is packed with 240 calories and comes in Chocolate Coconut and Chocolate SaviSeed.  I went with the chocolate coconut because those are two of my favorite flavors.  Unlike the Sustain bar the flavors of chocolate and coconut come through in this bar.  The bar is chewy and has a great texture.  My biggest fear is having a box of these in the house and just dipping into the box when I'm not working out it tasted that good. I typically pack a recovery smoothie with me on any training that is over two hours and supplement that with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  This bar would allow me to not have to make the sandwich if I'm running out of time during preparation.  Also, since it is only 240 calories it would be the perfect recovery tool for any training that is under two hours and the need for all the calories is not necessary. Overall I think the product line is an excellent option for vegetarians and vegans as well as those that are looking for something new to try.  There are multiple flavors of each to try which should satisfy most palettes and the nutritional needs are there as well.  All of the ingredients are pronounceable and are clean.  From a pricing stand-point they are very much inline with other sports nutrition products on the market. I would like to thank Vega Sport for allowing me the opportunity to review this product on my blog.     ** I did not receive compensation and had no expectations of a positive review in return for the sample pack of Vega Sport.
Published in Product Reviews
Thursday, 07 July 2011 16:29

Athlete's Plate - July 7, 2011

The Athlete's Plate menu is taking the week off this week.  I have been running on fumes for the past few days because of the workouts that my coach has been putting me through and work has been a killer, but this has been a great week. If you follow me on Twitter you will know that on Wednesday I did 4+ hours of training with 2800y of swimming followed by 1 hour of running and topped off with 2 hours of cycling.  I did it all before work so I could enjoy my day working and not worry about getting in that last workout.  By 6pm on Wednesday my brain was fried and I logged off of all electronic devices. Today I had another day of Swim, Bike, Run but this one also included a strength set.  This morning I had 3400y of swimming followed by 1 hour of cycling and 20 minutes of running which does not sound bad, except that the cycling included a 10k TT and the run was not just 20 minutes of skipping but 20 minutes at my 10k pace.  #thinkSPEED was in full effect today. Remember just two short paragraphs ago I said work has been a killer but it has been a great week as well?  I can say this because I sold the 2nd largest package in company history, have the largest package out as a proposal, and am looking at closing two to three deals today and that does not account for the prospecting that I have done.  If you or somebody you know is looking to launch a social media marketing campaign contact me because our barrier to entry is low but we do a great job. Anyway, back to the subject at hand.  Tonight Karen and I have decided is going to be date night (for Kevin - unfortunately Grey's is not new) so I will  be making homemade pizza for us.  Now, since we can never agree on the toppings I will end up making the pizza split in half with topping for Karen on one side and the topping for myself on the other. Karen has been asking (ok more like begging) me to make Naan Pizza for her with Figs and so I have decided I am going to make her half with figs, gorgonzola, arugula and walnuts with a sprinkling of honey on top. On my side I was originally going to go with sauteed mushrooms, red onions, garlic, chipotles and then topped with thinly sliced tomatoes and olive oil.  The tomatoes would crisp up in the oven at 450* and just be oh so tasty. But that is when I came across the following recipe that was on the site of one of my favorite chefs.  I am a huge fan of Marcus Samuelsson from watching him on Food Network.  He has a great story and all his food is spot on.  There is never a slip up with him and he believes in cooking healthy and makes a majority of his dishes vegetarian, which is not something you ever see on Food Network. Side note here:  One of my biggest pet peeves of TFN is that there is not ONE vegetarian cooking show.  Not ONE.  I mean there is a health crisis in this country with over 75% of American being considered obese and yet all I see is Paula Dean and mountains of butter, Rachel Ray telling people items are healthy as her portions are the size of Rhode Island, and while I love Guy Fieri and Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives the food that he showcases and is eating is loaded with unhealthy items. Back to our regularly scheduled program:  So after finding the following recipe on his site I am torn.  I made a sandwich for lunch yesterday that has those ingredients above but was served on toasted ezekiel bread with a avocado, tomatillo, chipotle spread, a fried egg, broccoli sprouts and tempeh bacon. So I am going to ask you, the reader to choose what I make on my side of the pizza tonight.  Voting will close at 4pm CST so I can get the ingredients, go to the gym and get a strength session in and then home to cook.  I will post pictures of the pizza on my Facebook  (click now to see this mornings recovery breakfast pictures) page tonight/tomorrow morning for you to see the final product. ===================== MAY 2, 2011

PHOTOGRAPHER: LINDSAY HUNT
FIVE INGREDIENT COLUMN BY LINDSAY HUNT In the beginning of the 20th century, American women spent an average of 30 hours a week in the kitchen. In the 21st century, that number has decreased to an average of 5.5 hours for women, and 4.4 hours for employed women.
Photographer: Lindsay Hunt
That’s not a lot of time to prepare healthy food at all! How do you cope with the fast pace of contemporary life and still find time to make nutritious dinners? This is a daily struggle for millions of Americans, to which I’m not immune. Solutions include simple sautées of vegetables, cut quickly and cooked while apot of whole-grains cooks on a back burner. Sometimes it’s even a dinner of scrambled eggs and toast. All of these are valid options for weeknight dinners – they’re healthy, inexpensive, and delicious.
Photographer: Lindsay Hunt
But what if you want something not only healthy, but special, too? In this case, I take a short cut and buy one ingredient pre-made. For less than 2 dollars I bought frozen whole-wheat pizza dough from my local grocery store. I defrosted the dough in the refrigerator during the day at work, and then all I had to do upon returning home was sauté some kale and slice some delicious mozzarella. If you’re super short on time, try one of these Healthy Pizza Options in New York City.
WHOLE-WHEAT KALE AND MOZZARELLA PIZZA RECIPE
Serves 2-4 1 batch whole-wheat pizza dough (store-bought or homemade) ¼ cup olive oil, divided 1 bunch curly kale, ribs removed and cut into 1-inch slices Salt, to taste Freshly ground pepper, to taste Whole-wheat flour for rolling 4 ounces buffalo mozzarella, cut into ½-inch slices Optional: Crushed red pepper flakes, for garnish 1. 3-4 hours before baking, defrost the pizza dough in the refrigerator. 2. Preheat the oven to the highest temperature. 3. Heat a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon of the oil. Add the kale to the pan and toss to coat in the oil. Season with salt and cook until wilted and tender. When cooked, season with freshly ground pepper. Set aside. 4. Dust a clean work surface with flour, and roll the dough out until ½-inch thick. (It may help to stretch the dough in the beginning with your hands.) 5. Transfer the dough to a baking tray and turn on the broiler. 6. Brush with olive oil and place the tray under the broiler. Broil for 5 minutes and remove from the oven. 7. Top the dough with the kale and distribute evenly. Lay the slices of mozzarella on top of the kale, and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Bake in the preheated oven for 10-15 minutes until the dough is fully cooked and the cheese is melted. 8. Place the tray under the broiler again until the cheese is golden and bubbly. 9. Serve hot, with crushed red pepper flakes, if desired. [caption id="attachment_2994" align="aligncenter" width="490" caption="Kale and Mozzarealla Pizza"][/caption] [polldaddy poll="5214044"]    
Published in Athlete's Plate
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