Merry Hanukkus

Hey all,
I’m writing you from my couch where I’ve been sitting, relaxing, for most of the morning. My Christmas started out on a good note:
– wake up without alarm clock
– yoga practice (dvd)
– steel cut oats with milk, pumpkin, pomegranate, flaxseed meal, and almond butter (so. good.)
– backed-up-email-reading

The rest of my day looks like this:
– debate doing this workout in preparation for the day’s feasts
– traditional feast with extended family and friends
– white elephant gift exchange (so fun)
– taco feast with the boyfriend’s immediate family

This past week I’ve been baking a bit for my friends’ holiday presents, which means a lot of dough-eating/”broken”-cookie-eating:

Notice the greasy stain where my "tester" cookie once rested

Oh darn, it broke apart. Might as well store it in my belly ūüôā

I bake cookies for my friends pretty much every Christmas. This year’s assortment looked like this:

Christmas Present Cookies

To the left we have Orange Spice Molasses Cookies :

Orange Spice Molasses Cookies

Wonderfully spicy and delicious. I think I’ve probably made a better molasses cookie in my day, but this recipe still is pretty darn delicious.

To the right (and pictured above) we have Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies:

Flourless Peanut Butter Cookies

These cookies are. so. good. This is the type of cookie that milk was made for. So rich and delicious. I doubled the recipe, added vanilla, and replaced the 2 cups white sugar with 1/2 cup organic turbinado sugar, 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar, and 1/2 cup stevia for baking.

On top you’ll find Coconut Date Cookies:

Coconut Date Cookies

I made these exactly as called for in the recipe except I doubled everything in the recipe except the sugar. These were simply fantastic. Another one of those “broken”-cookie-eating-cookies.

I was very pleased with how the cookies turned out. As you can see above, I gifted them to my friends in glass jars that they can reuse for future cookies or any decorative storage of their choosing.

As a side note: anyone else notice that their craving for sweets increasing in this holiday season? 

Did you fit in some exercise on Christmas?

A Special Package

OK, so before we get into what the special package was, I figure that I should probably clear up some rumors that I totally made up myself have been going around regarding my absence the past week.

1. I did not join a travelling circus.

2. I was not abducted by aliens

3. I didn’t change into a kitten.

The truth? I was just busy getting ready for my camping trip (and attending the camping trip) this weekend.

Now, about that package…

So, you know how I love my Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls? Well, I’ve been wanting to get a better protein powder than the GNC brand that I had been using. (I believe it has a smelly affect on my digestion) I decided on About Time Whey due to its being 100% whey isolate and sweetened with stevia:

I chose the chocolate variety because (duh) my recipe is called Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Balls.

As you will likely know if you shop for protein powder, this stuff is not really carried in stores. (At least any that I’ve seen) So I chose to buy it online from iherb.com. I chose iherb because when you use a member’s code, you get $5 off. (more on that later) Plus, the price was definitely right on this site.

As I proceded to checkout, I noticed that if I spent just $10 more I could get free shipping. I weighed my options: buy $10 more of awesome stuff, or spend $5 more for shipping. I (obviously) had to choose to buy more awesome stuff. I decided on this:

Artisana Coconut Butter - Deliciousness with a monster-kick of fresh coconut taste. sooooo goooood.

and this:

Stevia in drop form

I was very impressed with iherb for a few reasons:

1. It offered a free shipping option. (score)

2. It had pretty much any supplement that I would want to buy.

3. It has a referral bonus discount code. <– this basically means that you find a person who’s bought from there (oh look, you found me) and use their referral code (mine =¬†EGA134) and get $5 off your first purchase. So, if you want to buy from iherb.com¬†enter¬†EGA134¬†when you checkout to get $5 off your purchase.¬†

I was really excited to try out my Coconut Butter, so I invited a friend over last night and whipped up a new recipe (that I invented):

Coconut Lemon Curry Wheat Berry Tofu Salad

serves 4

Ingredients
– 1 1/2 tbsp coconut butter
– juice & zest of 1 lemon
– 1/8 cup shelled pistachios, chopped
– 1 tbsp curry powder
– fresh ground pepper, to taste
– sea salt, to taste
Рa few dashes of coriander & ginger            
– 1 tbsp olive oil
– 2 carrots, chopped
– 1 small vidalia onion, chopped
– 2 cups cabbage, shredded
– 3 cloves garlic, minced
Р1 yellow bell pepper, chopped                      
– 1 cup dry wheat berry, prepared with water
– 1 container firm tofu, cubed & pre-baked (spread on cookie sheet, toss in oil, bake on 375ňöF until golden)

Directions
1. As noted in the ingredients, prepare your wheat berry and tofu.
2. Combine coconut butter through ginger in a small bowl and add a few splashes of water to thin.
3. Heat olive oil over medium to medium-high heat. Sauté vegetables until tender-crisp.
4. To the vegetables, add the prepared wheat berry, tofu, and sauce. Mix well to combine. Simmer for 5 minutes.
Serving suggestion: Top with some Sriracha sauce

Tofu After Baking

Veggie Selection

Saucy Deliciousness

The Final Product

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This was probably one of my favorite things that I’ve eaten lately. And it packed fairly nicely in my lunch. (It was more dry and less saucy, but I loved it anyways)