Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Crazy Rainy Day

Today was such a long day! I feel like it may as well have been two days. I decided against wearing rain boots despite the forecast and that was not the best decision. Not long after I arrived at work, it started raining like it meant it. Luckily I managed to stay in the music building nearly the entire day. Not that unusual for me actually. Anyways, I talked a good half hour into work with my boss Cathy who gave me some great new blogs to look into: The Pioneer Woman and Dooce. I already follow Carrots 'N' Cake, Eat Live Run, and Kath Eats Real Food. She also inspired me to try doing step by step photos of the things I cook which I did tonight! We discussed that it might be especially interesting since I cook vegan food to see just how I do it. I'm no chef but I do love to cook!
Bright red cherries like this can make The History of Medieval to Renaissance Music easier to sit through! I wanted to mention that there is a reason I wrap the cherries in a paper towel. One late night I was watching The Food Network and that crazy Alton Brown came on talking about how to make candied ginger which should happen in my near future if I'm lucky. He explained in his sciencey crazy way that plastic bags and containers actually promote rotting when fresh foods touch them and to always use paper towels as a barrier. Great advice Alton!
Demolished! My friend Greg helped me but he wouldn't let me get one little shot of him holding a cherry! Boo! At least I snuck in this one and got his knee. Ha!
So remember that workout date I had with Amanda after class? It still happened except that we waited till 4 to go because she had forgotten about the start of some new classes. Today was just full of surprises! Our workout was awesome. We did 25 minutes on the bikes and 20 minutes on the stairstepper. By then I needed to get out and hit the bank to take care of some biz that my mom has been getting at me to do for a while now. Mostly for a lack of better planning, by this point I was starving! Even though I ate my cherry yogurt and Peanut Butter Pretzel Mojo Clif Bar, I was running way low by the time I got to the bank. By the way, the peanut butter pretzel flavor is bomb. It's definitely on the saltier side but I liked that it wasn't crazy sweet. Since I was already in the area because I went to the bank I decided to go to the grocery store and pick a few things up. Talk about self control, man is it hard to shop smart when you're starving! I decided on this Naked Superfood juice which was perfect because it has veggies in it and they were 2 for $5!
Can you visualize the lunches to come?

I decided that because I bought that humongous back of broccoli that I would attempt to make a hearty, vegan cream of broccoli soup!
The ingredients were as follows:
  • 4 lb. 5 oz broccoli florets
  • 484 grams or two pre-sliced packages of mushrooms
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen green beans, corn, and carrots
  • 1 medium to large yellow onion or 2 cups, roughly chopped
  • 1 Tbsp. vegan butter
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 3/4 cups soy milk
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 1 tsp. fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp. dried basil
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp. white pepper
  • 1 tsp dried rosemary
  • cracked black pepper to taste, I probably did about 1/2 tsp or more
  • 1 bay leaf
I started by first setting the oven to 400 degrees F and popping a head of garlic wrapped in tin foil in the oven. I set the timer for 35 minutes and got to work on the rest!
Another shot of all those ingredients. P.S. I love my food scale!
I heated the pan on a medium high heat (or tried to. My stove sort of fails at life but I make it work). I Added the butter and let it melt a little.
Then I added the chopped onions for a little sauté action.
Next up: Mushrooms! At this point when I heard it really start to hiss I added a little splash of veggie broth to make sure nothing burned.
Once the mushrooms started to look a little darker and took on that shiny glaze that says please Claire, eat me, I smothered them with 4 pounds of broccoli muhahaha! And drowned them with three cups of vegetable broth muahahaha!
After giving the whole thing a stir I covered the pot and let it sit while I retrieved my roasting garlic which looked like this: an oversized hunchback of Notre Dame Hershey's Kiss.
Voila! The step I forgot however, was to remove as much of the paper outside as possible before putting it in the oven....oh well. I just let that sucker cool down a bit before opening him up.
I used the garlic masher which is way to much fun and delightfully messy to smash what I can only guess was about ten cloves. You know me, once I start playing with food I sort of loose track of the main purpose lol.
Then I added my garlicy mush, the frozen veggies, the spices, and the soy milk to my concoction.
I gave it a stir and let it simmer for about ten minutes. The finished product, yay! Honestly this was a bigger success than I predicted. I got the inspiration for the soup and looked up a few recipes online to get some guidelines but I just made most of it up. Even my non-vegan room mate Savannah and her boyfriend Matt like it! And that's saying something cause Matt is a straight up carnivore haha.
I served myself half a pita bread cut into cute little wedges so that I could dip them every which way and of course a bucket o' hummus!!
Look at that steam! Piping hot soup ahhhh. I enjoyed my lovely little dinner while watching Dexter online. It had been at least two days since I'd had a fix and I was really itching for one. I'm an addict, I'm telling you.
Suddenly the stupid MegaVideo player said that I used up my time limit which made me turn green like the Hulk! But I soothed myself by deciding to write my dinner post with a bowl of this amazing cereal. This is from Costco (big surprise) and it is fabulous. The dried blueberries float my boat.
I've decided to try eating cereal out of a mug in an attempt to eat less of it. It was basically successful until the internet decided to suck and I had to restart the wireless spaceship looking thingy before I could upload all of my glorious food pictures. That's about the time I had another mug.... eating out of frustration is a pretty bad excuse. But I will say that I've done pretty well today as far as making healthy choices when I could have made convenient crappy ones. It was a gray, rainy day that ended with an awesome workout and an awesome soup. I guess I'm okay with that :)

Tomorrow morning is another 7am cycling class and I'm going to stay afterwards and to some arms and abs. Can't wait! Time for me to hit the hay and it's only 10:36! Not gunna lie... I love going do bed early. Man I just get this feeling I'm not a typical college student, or twenty year old for that matter.

See you in the AM!


Cathy said...

Hey Claire,

That soup looks seriously yummy.

Love the photos, great job!

Claire said...

Thanks Cathy!!!