My alarm went off yesterday morning and I was so nice and cozy. I was under not only my sheets and comforter, but also our down comforter because I slept with the window open – perfect sleeping conditions! Until I lifted off the covers and damn, it was cold! I turned off the alarm and checked my weather app – no wonder – it was 36 degrees out! But it was sunny, so instead of climbing back into bed, even before I went to the bathroom I put my shoes on. Yes, I walk in whatever I wear to bed. No judging
Ally, this was the same river your hotel was on – see how much calmer it is 30 miles north?! I took this picture on my last road home, and wouldn’t you know, the green orb was with me! I’ve talked about how lately this spot has been in some of my pics – it’s never happened before in any of the other pictures I’ve taken in the same neighborhood in the same conditions over the last 14 years – I like to think it’s Tony taking a walk with me.
Over the weekend I had some bananas the really really needed to be used up or tossed out. I stumbled upon Minimalist Baker’s Banana Bread Granola. Huh. I did have to adapt it a bit with what I had on hand, and I baked it twice because after the first baking it was still kind of chewy in the middle and I only like crunchy granola. My changes are in red.
- 3 cups rolled oats (GF for gluten free eaters)
- 3/4 cup walnuts
- 1/2 cup pecans one cup mixed canned nuts
- 3 Tbsp raw sugar 3 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon
- 1 Tbsp flax seed (didn’t have any)
- 1/4 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup + 1 Tbsp maple syrup, agave or honey if not vegan 1/3 cup of sugar free pancake syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 medium ripe banana, mashed (~1/2 cup) mine were really ripe, so I used two bananas
- Preheat oven to 350.
- Mix the oats, cinnamon, sugar, salt, flaxseed and nuts together in a large bowl (see photo).
- In a small saucepan over medium low heat, warm the coconut oil, maple syrup (or agave or honey) and vanilla extract. Once liquidy, remove from heat and whisk in banana puree until well combined. Pour over the dry ingredients and mix well.
- Spread the mixture evenly onto one or two baking sheets (making sure it doesn’t get crowded) and bake for 23-28 minutes or until golden brown. The coconut oil will help it crisp up well, but be sure to watch it carefully as it can brown quickly. At this point I broke up the granola into clumps, reduced the oven to 250 and baked for another 20 minutes. It will all be crunchy once it’s completely cooled.
- NOTE: If you don’t toss the granola while baking, it will make get clumpy, which I personally love. But if you want a more crumbly granola, toss/stir a bit at the halfway point to break up the clumps.
- Once the granola is visibly browned, remove from the oven and toss just a bit to let the heat escape. Cool completely on the baking sheet or in a heat-safe bowl. Store in a container or jar with an air-tight seal – it should keep for a couple weeks.
I ended up making a strawberry banana bread granola parfait with plain Chobani – so good! I have to say, it was weird to be putting bananas in granola!
I had physical therapy again yesterday. It’s at a weird time, 1:30 in the afternoon and I can never decide whether to eat before or after I come back. I decided I was still full from the parfait so I ate afterwards. I went to grab my gym bag to change into sweats before going across the street, only to find out that I packed a pair of really tight shorts that I normally just wear around the house, and a size Medium pair of sweats I just bought because they were only $1.00 at Goodwill and I was planning to save them until they actually fit. They were super tight and I felt like a sausage in them, but I got through all my stretches. I got the rolling pin on my quad again and it felt really good!
By now, I am assuming that most regular readers know that I puffy heart Cabot cheese. Like a lot. I may even have a separate compartment in my fridge for my Cabot cheese.
About a month ago they sent me their new Cookbook – The Cabot Creamery cookbook. When I was meal planning I decided to incorporate some of their recipes into my weekly menu. When I cleaned out the fridge and saw that I had a whole head of broccoli that needed to be used up, a quick look on Page 84 and there was their recipe for broccoli cheddar soup!
I garnished my soup with some chopped radish and a bit more cheddar cheese. On the side I had some extra grilled chicken that I cooked the night before last and had open face chicken and spinach sandwiches with more Cabot cheese. Duh. I used to think their extra sharp was my favorite, but this is the first time I’ve had the 12 month aged cheese and it’s remarkable. If I could I’d just have a block of that cheese on my desk and just slice it off bit by bit until it was all gone.
So after work I wasn’t going to the gym because I didn’t really have anything to wear that I’d be comfy in, so I decided to come home. I thought Jacob was going to be working, but Hannah had his keys in her purse at work and when he called to tell them he’d be late for work, he got called off because it wasn’t busy. I had pinned this recipe for Portillos Chopped Salad, because I know it’s one of her favorites. I was going to put tiny chopped chicken in her salad, but once I knew Jacob was going to be home, I decided he and I would have some steak on ours.
I really didn’t follow the recipe that closely – Hannah just kept chopping stuff up – romaine, butter lettuce, carrots, cucumber. She had cooked up ditalini pasta and had that cooling in the pasta drainer. She added the cooked pasta to the veggies, and then everyone kind of plated their own with additional fixins: mine had blueberries, craisins, a few pecans, red cabbage, goat cheese, Cabot cheese, and steak – I used Paul Newman’s light balsamic – just over a tablespoons because the salad was so flavorful on it’s own, you didn’t need to bury it in salad dressing.
Holy balls this was delicious – the tartness of the craisins and goat cheese paired well with the beef and blueberries. I literally licked my plate clean.
Since I still had to get my steps in, and it was only 6:50 by the time we finished dinner, I set off on my walk. Loving that it is light until nearly 7:55! And guess who joined me for my walk? Tony! The biggest orb I’ve seen to date! Now I know there is an explanation on how these are appearing on my camera, just odd that they are showing up now.
It was a cool 50 degrees and perfect walking weather. I ended up walking about 45 minutes. I took this picture with my panoramic on my iPhone – the left was the road ahead of me and the right was the road behind me.
And I found a heart on my walk – love.
I managed to do pretty well considering I was basically only doing stretching at lunch at PT. As long as it’s nice out in the morning I plan on getting my day off on the right foot. I also just realized I never changed my weight on my fit bit app!
And it was nice not to enter all my food on caloriecount.com today. I have to say that after participating in the protein challenge I have a pretty good idea on how much 30 grams of protein looks like, and I think I did pretty good because I had no desire to eat in between meals today, so I was probably pretty close.
My good friends at Cabot are thanking me for my continued support of their products by having them them offer up a Cabot Creamery Cookbook and $25 Cabot Gift Box to give away to my blog readers. Just simply answer one question: what’s your favorite way to eat cheese? I’ll pick a winner on Friday’s post. See why I puffy heart Cabot?!
Alright, here is day two of intuitively eating. And I’ve packed the right clothes in my gym bag, so I’ve got that going for me! Make it a great day!