Octopuscarwash's Gourmet Adventures

I live to eat. Yes, I am an Asian Jew. My favorite meal is breakfast (oatmeal in particular). I'm only in high school, so I am a complete amateur. Some of my favorite cuisines are Middle Eastern, Moroccan, Japanese and Korean. I eat so much Chinese food that it's hard to say whether I like it or not... all I know is that I don't like what most of America seems to think of as Chinese food, Panda Express. I'm a pescetarian and love coming up with my own healthy fusion food.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

For once, I'm celebrating the holidays!

This year Christmas Eve and the days building up to it have actually felt festive, which says a lot, considering we don't celebrate Christmas. Hanukkah has been pretty low-key... and the weather has been awful. Yesterday, I didn't go out of the house ONCE! I had no reason to...
Yesterday:
Got up and did a yoga routine (about 30 minutes)-- surprisingly, it was enough to get me to sweat and my heart rate up! Not the same as a "real" workout, but definitely something.
Breakfast: repeat of blackberry cardamom cashew oats.
After breakfast, I decided to bake cookies for neighbors. I made oatmeal raisin chocolate chip cookies (these were actually semi-healthy because I used some canola oil and white whole wheat flour) and gingerbread cookies! I wanted to make gingerbread men, but I didn't have the cookie cutters, so I ended up with leaves... and no frosting because it's gross and unnecessary.
Because I didn't go out, lunch was VERY light. I started with a bowl of beet soup with a few spoonfuls of brown rice to thicken it, plus some Kashi crackers.

I soon realized that this wasn't enough, so I got some carrots and celery and hummus.
Afterwards I debated having a cookie, but to be honest, I was feeling kind of down on myself-- I hadn't gone outside or even walked around, and I felt like I kind of "didn't deserve it," which is probably ridiculous. I had a pear instead.
For some reason, I was STARVING around 4:45! I had cottage cheese and a sprinkle of grapenuts and GoLean Crunch. I started with 1/2 cup, which is a serving, but it just wasn't enough...
Dinner was Chinese-- scrambled eggs and tomatoes and a very strange dish of bok choy, tree ears, tofu, and cucumbers, of all things. It was very monastic-- I think it would have been better if the cucumbers had been cooked longer so that they resembled zucchini.


Today
TODAY WAS PRODUCTIVE. It flew by so quickly, and I was hardly in the house at all! I got up at a decent hour to do some interval training on the elliptical. I was feeling fine while I was working out, but afterwards my knee started hurting AGAIN! I wonder what it is... it feels more like shin splints, but the elliptical is supposed to be low impact!
Anyways, for breakfast I made one of the best bowls of oatmeal EVER. I used 1/3 a cup of oats for the base, since the toppings are pretty decadent. I used a whole small banana, 1/3 cup vanilla hemp milk, 1/3 cup water, and later, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger. On top, I crumbled most of a small oatmeal raisin cookie and had a spoon of peanut butter. Because you can't have cookies without milk, I had a glass of milk on the side. This was so good, I can't even describe it. I think it was the combination of textures, plus the few melty chocolate chips. YUM.

After breakfast, my mom and I headed out for some errands-- we set up some last minute dinner plans with neighbors and had to go grocery shopping. One of the stops we made was at that same Zalenski and Horvath, the gourmet foods store. I picked up a little present for one of my friends, AND one for myself, as well as an awesome fish and seafood cookbook.
CHECK THIS OUT, PEANUT BUTTER FANS. For my friend (they let me taste a little bit-- I basically licked it, knowing how many calories could potentially be in that sample) I got CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE DOUGH PEANUT BUTTER! I realize that sounds disgusting (or wonderful, depending on who you are), but I assure you, it was fabulous. For myself, I bought chocolate banana peanut butter... we'll see how this goes. I also plan on buying some Peanut Butter and Co peanut butter when I go to NY... I realize they sell it at Whole Foods, but I want to go to the actual store.

By the time we got back from all the errands, it was nearly 2:00! I made myself a strange but nice lunch... talk about fusion! Basically, I was trying to use up leftovers.
There were leftover canned tomatoes in the fridge, so I heated them with marjoram, thyme and white wine, then added brown rice and later on, arugula, which wilted. At the last minute, I crumbled in some feta and on top, I had the VERY last of the tempeh mole. An interesting combination of flavors...
WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? HOW COULD I HAVE FORGOTTEN TO TAKE A PICTURE OF THIS?
I also had carrots, celery and hummus (sorry for the blurry photo).
And a pear

I didn't have much time after lunch, since I was due at a friend's, but I made a quick squash dish for dinner that night-- basically just baked squash (I used one mini pumpkin and one crazy-looking squash called a Carnival squash) drizzled with a combination of olive oil, maple syrup, and smoked paprika.
I went to my friend's and had a great time. First, we had some hot chocolate-- this was super decadent because she used a combination of whole and 2%. Therefore, I only had half a mug. It was plenty (these photos came out TERRIBLY).

We celebrated Hanukkah (so I lit the candles twice tonight!) and her mom let me try a bite of her sweet potato latkes! They were eggy and more moist than my mom's-- apparently this is because she used some mashed sweet potato to give them body. I didn't want to spoil my appetite, so I only had a bite.

Dinner-- It's so fun having neighbors over! They're Jewish (partly) too, so it felt nice having something to do on Christmas Eve when everybody else is busy.
To start with, we had... more latkes! Once again, with homemade applesauce and this time, some sour cream. I decided to pass on the latke encore.

My parents made roast chicken and stir-fried asparagus, which we had along with my squash and a vegetarian lasagna that they brought.

My neighbor kept insisting that the lasagna was overdone, and it was a little dry, but it had a fantastic souffle-like top that ballooned out of the cast iron skillet-- apparently it had a lot of eggs in it. Very rich... it was strange, though... by the time I had finished eating, I realized that I wanted the chicken. I've been waiting for a time when I actually wanted to eat meat, and I did tonight. I regret not going with it, a bit. I just don't know when to start!
First helpings (my squash was delicious, if I do say so myself)

Seconds

Dessert: basically a conglomeration of cookies-- my cookies, sugar cookies and peanut brittle from one neighbor, and a gingerbread fruitcake-ish thing from another neighbor. I was pretty full and decided on a tangerine.

There's a possibility that we'll go back to these neighbor's for Christmas dinner (or lunch? at 4:00) tomorrow... we'll see. It would be nice to have some plans.
Happy holidays!

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6 Comments:

Blogger V said...

Ooh, latkes with apple sauce? I never thought of that.

Maybe it's the holiday time but your oatmeal keeps getting more creative.

December 25, 2008 at 9:31 AM  
Blogger Catriona said...

your porridge looks amazing may i say...
I also took your advice on cranberry sauce and made blueberry cranberry orange-zest sauce without a recipe but it ended up really really good.. plan on having it on my breakfast tomorrow! :)
about the shin splints, I had the same thing about 2 years ago during rowing and even if you do low impact it still hurts quite a lot and eventually it does go away and just try not to do too much harder impact stuff because that makes it worse. hope it gets better!
happy holidays xxx

December 25, 2008 at 6:17 PM  
Blogger Blue in Green said...

Hello...and happy holidays. There is a lot I can learn on here and would like to link to you in order to be able to return here?
Best wishes

December 26, 2008 at 12:11 PM  
Blogger Lida said...

i'd love to be linked!

December 26, 2008 at 4:01 PM  
Anonymous Sammy said...

Those maple leaf cookies are so cute!

December 27, 2008 at 7:41 AM  
Blogger leucippe said...

so sorry not to have photographed the lobsters. There were so many of them and they looked gorgeous on the platters -- so red, so perfectly formed. We realized our omission when it was too late. And we needed real lobster claw crackers, not the pathetic little nutcrackers we found. so next time, for sure.

January 2, 2009 at 11:48 PM  

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