Thursday, December 22, 2011

Mexican Wednesday

Today was a back-of-the-freezer day.  Luckily, I had something that fit in with the International Week theme that I created last night.

  • TJ's Black Bean & Corn Enchilada
  • 1/4 cup shredded cheddar & jack cheese
  • green salad with red bell pepper
  • tangerine
Nothing special.  I had to add a little cheese on top of these enchiladas because I can't support the "dairy free" enchilada movement.  Ok, maybe it's not exactly a movement.  But enchiladas are supposed to be cheesy.  It's the law!  Anyway, it wouldn't have mattered if I drowned these enchiladas in cheese because they were not very tasty.  Super salty and the sauce was gloopy.  I guess I buy these ready meals for an emergency lunch on days, like today, when fresh food is running low and we want to eat up whatever we have.  Oh, but it's a drag to eat this stuff.  I know I have other options, like buying lunch at one of my favorite sandwich shops (I'm looking at you, Pret).  But I can't bring myself to buy a lunch when I know I  have the ability to pack something.  I've got to get better at choosing my emergency lunch items.

We had our office holiday party tonight.  (Hence the after midnight post.)  It was at a really great barbecue restaurant and I had a little bit of everything.  The best part was taking a doggie bag home.  Now I've got to figure out how to shoehorn leftover Mississippi barbecue and grilled salmon in this international theme.  

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Japanese Tuesday

I think I'm trying to force a theme here.  But today's lunch had a slight (very slight, actually) Japanese feel to it.  I guess it was just the fish and rice, but let's call it International Week here at A Packable Feast:

  • broiled tilapia over a bed of basmati rice
  • pineapple chunks
  • green salad with red bell peppers smushed in with a tangerine
  • rosemary and thyme walnuts
Well, the rice was leftover from our extravagant Sunday night take-out dinner.  But the tilapia filets were sitting in our freezer, begging to be cooked this week.  Anyway, on to the nuts!

I made a big batch of these nuts as holiday gifts for the office.  I put them in little jars and made some little gift bags.  Rats! I just realized I should have taken a picture of them for this here bloggy wog. Sorry.  I got the recipe from a recent issue of Self Magazine.  Here it is:

Rosemary and Thyme Walnuts
  • 5 teaspoons olive oil
  • 5 teaspoons pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 3 teaspoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 2 cups walnut halves
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Heat oven to 350°. In a bowl, whisk 5 tsp olive oil with 5 tsp pure maple syrup and 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper. Stir in 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary and 2 tsp chopped fresh thyme. Add 2 cups walnut halves; toss well to coat. Spread evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake until fragrant and crisp, 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle with 1 tsp chopped fresh thyme and 1/4 tsp kosher salt. Cool completely.

I just had another big realization.  I used 5 TABLESPOONS OF OIL AND MAPLE SYRUP instead of 5 teaspoons!!!  What the heck was I thinking.  No wonder they were so sweet and oily!! Sheesh!! I can't believe I was so stupid.  Anyway, learn from my mistakes.  Read your recipes carefully, kiddies.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Indian Monday

After surviving the never-ending meatloaf, we decided to order in last night.  Hence, today's lunch:

  • green salad with red bell peppers
  • tangerines
  • lamb bhuna ghosht 
  • basmati rice with crispy bits of garlic
We ended up making a great bolognese sauce with the remainder of the meatloaf.  It was dinner for at least 3 nights.  Thanks for all the great ideas.  Then, I convinced myself that since it's a short week and we will be gone for all of next week (California, here we come!) that shouldn't cook enormous amounts of food.  I also convinced myself that since I save so much money by packing my lunch and breakfast 5 days a week we should treat ourselves to a big Sunday night take-out Indian meal.  $77 and an intense case of heartburn later... 

Well, don't I feel stupid!

But it was pretty nice to have a such a warm and filling lunch this afternoon.  I'm surprised and kind of sad that it hasn't snowed here yet.  I think I get a sick sense of smugness when I leave to go back to California for Christmas and NYC is covered in a blanket of snow.  However, it was so bad last winter that I don't dare miss the snow too much.  Anyway, I'm feeling bad about getting take-out last night.  Not only was it waaaaay too expensive but it was also really unhealthy.  Why do we do things like that?  Or, I guess I should say, why do I do things like that? Do you ever do things like that? You know, irrational spending coupled with irrational eating.  Oh well.  Acknowledge and move on.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Third Time's A Charm

BO-ring!!!  This lunch epitomizes Hump Day:

  • turkey meatloaf with ketchup
  • steamed broccoli
  • 2 tangerines
  • green salad with red bell peppers
I tried to make it a bit more healthy than yesterday, but it's clearly not any more exciting.  Thanks for the great suggestions.  I'm going to try to spruce up this poor meatloaf for the rest of the week.  Oh, I decided to go for all fruit and veggie sides today because ate about 10 lbs of Christmas cookies and homemade toffee that some evil person left lying around the office.  You know I'm a sucker for a sugary treat!  But, obviously, when you eat it every hour throughout the entire's not really a "treat" anymore.  So, I decided to counteract yesterday's overindulgence.  Besides, the Luna bars that I have in the house are essentially glorified rice crispy squares (dipped in chocolate).  What is the deal (hello, I'm Jerry Seinfeld) with all these dang bars?  Actually, I should say, what's the deal with me buying and eating them when I know full well that they are just candy?!  When they first invented them they were supposed to be for "energy" or "protein" or some bunk like that.  But we all know they are just another thing that we can stuff into our pie-holes under the pretense of being healthy.  And even if they are meant to supplement or replace your meals because you're so busy working out, running marathons or whatever, then I still shouldn't be eating them since my most intense activities have consisted of me walking to the subway and pushing my way through the doors to find the first open seat.  Ok, rant over.  That was my inane way of mentioning that I'm going to try to stop eating Luna bars.  Do you ever eat these energy bar things?  Why or why not? Am I doing them wrong?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


So this was day 2 of meatloaf mania.  So far, it's pretty good:

  • sugar snap peas
  • Luna bar (s'mores flavor)
  • frozen pineapple chunks
  • turkey meatloaf with a squirt of ketchup
Ok, like I said.  This is pretty good.  It's not majorly unhealthy and it's tasty and filling.  But, it is kind of boring and unimaginative.  After all, I did make a big pronouncement about cutting leftovers out of my lunch regime.  Now, here I cooking giant portions of food just so I can use the leftovers for lunch.  I guess it's harder to get super creative with lunch than I realized.  But I still want to start thinking outside the box. No pun intended.

Anyway, I'll leave you with a couple of questions.  What the hell can I do with the 3 lbs. of leftover turkey meatloaf we have?  I sure there are lots of different ways to "repurpose" this beast, but I'm too complacent to figure them out right now.  Also, do you guys ever eat meatloaf?  I didn't grow up eating it.  In fact, I think my parents would call this "exotic" American food.  But I tried making it a few years ago when I wanted to make a supposed classic American comfort meal.  I think I was trying to be kitschy, but I actually really ended up liking it.  So, was it a staple in your home or is it mystery meat to you?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Get Used To This

I think you'll be seeing a lot of this guy in the coming week.  I just put the above 5+ pound turkey meatloaf into the oven.  I used Ina Garten's recipe, except I substituted 2 of the meat pounds with some chicken sausage that we have had in the freezer for a donkey's age.  I also used some dried mixed herbs instead of fresh thyme.  Here's pretty much what I put into this sucker, try for yourself:

Turkey Meatloaf


  • 3 cups chopped yellow onions (2 large onions)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon herbs de provence
  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 cup chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons tomato paste
  • 3 pounds ground turkey breast
  • 2 pounds chicken sausage (peel off the casing first)
  • 1 1/2 cups plain dry bread crumbs
  • 3 extra-large eggs, beaten
  • 3/4 cup ketchup


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
In a medium saute pan, over medium-low heat, cook the onions, olive oil, salt, pepper, and thyme until translucent, but not browned, approximately 15 minutes. Add the Worcestershire sauce, chicken stock, and tomato paste and mix well. Allow to cool to room temperature.
Combine the ground turkey, chicken sausage meat, bread crumbs, eggs, and onion mixture in a large bowl. Mix well and shape into a rectangular loaf on an ungreased sheet pan. Spread the ketchup evenly on top. Bake for 1 hour until the internal temperature is 160 degrees F. and the meatloaf is cooked through. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Adventures In Burritoing

 I made a risky move with lunch today.  I essentially put soup in a bag.  But it worked:

  • roasted Brussels sprouts
  • vanilla cake with chocolate frosting (all organic, but still fattening)
  • beef chili with low fat cheddar cubes wrapped in a TJ whole wheat tortilla
  • raspberries
Day 3 of eating this awesome chili for lunch and I decided to try having a chili burrito.  It was a little drippy but really delicious.  

I actually used a smaller portion of chili than I would normally eat to accommodate the tortilla.  I could have done with a bit more cheese, but I didn't want to make it any more unhealthy than it already is.  And that's another thing.  My lunches this week are not doing me any favors in the weight loss/don't get any fatter department.  I know I should be eating lighter and more vegetable based meals if I'm ever going to shift this pudge.  But, man...meat and sugar have got me twisted!  I wish I was one of those people who could do some sort of "detox" from sugar and meat but I don't have it in me.  Besides, I like them too much quit cold turkey.

Are there any foods that you feel you need to detox from?  Do you even believe in the whole detox thing?

Monday, December 5, 2011

Beefy Beefy

 I know I said I'm going to stop eating leftovers, and I'm trying.  But when your man brings home a pound of grass fed organic beef and makes a delectable pot of eat it, man. YOU EAT IT!

  • Brussel sprouts
  • homemade organic vanilla cake with homemade chocolate buttercream frosting
  • creepily long green grapes
  • Texas style beef chili with light white cheddar on top

And, technically, it's not leftovers because we didn't even have it for dinner last night since it took 8+ hours in the slow cooker.  But, oh boy was it worth it.  Anyway I chopped up one of these cheeses.  What do you think of my attempt at galaxy nails?
Yummy!  And yes, I did bake and ice and entire cake (it's sort of small, but still).  The Dude and I plan on taking a little piece for lunch every day.  I LOVE having a real dessert waiting for me in my lunchbox.  Also, it's great to finally contribute to something to our weekly meal bank.  He does most of the cooking these days, but I'm working on picking up the slack.  Dessert is a great way to start.

Do you guys put a dessert or sweet treat in your lunch? 

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Face Face

Looks like my favorite fruit is back and in full effect.  Take a look-see:

  • herb turkey and light provolone cheese on a TJ's sandwich slim
  • sugar snap peas
  • cara cara oranges!!
I have professed my love for these oranges in the past and my love for them has not changed.  I got a big bag of them this weekend and I've already eaten about half the batch.  Lunch was supplemented with 2 hardboiled eggs today.  I've been trying to get more protein with my snacks lately, so I popped an egg around 10:00 a.m. for a late breakfast.  The second egg was devoured around 3:00 p.m. when those familiar hunger pangs/cravings kicked in.  I felt satisfied, so I guess there is something to this thing about eating healthy/filling snacks.  Who woulda thunk it!

Oh yeah, "cara" means "face" in Spanish, hence the clever title of this post. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Leftover Slump

Classic leftover lunches this week.
  • garlic chicken (here's the recipe)
  • mashed potatoes
  • sugar snap peas
  • clementines
  • cinnamon Puffins
Coming back from a vacation to a short work week is a blessing and a curse.  I had to catch up on some stuff from the week I was gone (boo) but I'm only working 3 days this week (yay).  So I kept it simple with my lunches this week.  I ate this yesterday and today and I will eat it tomorrow.  Anyway, have I told you guys about my love for Puffins?  I had a love affair with then as a lunchtime dessert/snack over the summer.  Well, now I'm all about the cinnamon flavor.    

I've been having a bowl of this stuff in the morning before I leave for work.  But I love it so much that I eat them dry after having my savory garlic lunch.  It's a perfect palate cleanser.  Sweet and crunchy and not too much sugar and a bit of fiber.  Ugh, do I sound like I'm advertising for them? Sorry. I'm just a girl standing in front of a box of cereal and asking it to love me.

The upcoming holiday is the Super Bowl of lunch leftovers and I'm going to try not to bog down my box with a bunch of turkey and fixins.   I want to be more creative and lunch specific in the coming weeks.  I love the food I eat but I feel like I'm lacking variety because a lot of times I eat the same lunch and dinner 2 or 3 days a week.  Leftovers are easy (and delicious) when you know your food is great from meal 1 to meal 5.  On the flip side, it can get really boring and predictable when I open my box and see the same chicken dinner from the night before staring back at me.  Hopefully I'll get my creative mojo back after turkey day.  Wish me luck.  Happy Thanksgiving!!

Friday, November 11, 2011

I'll Fly Away

Lunch is a simple affair today as I'll be boarding a flight directly after work to take a family vacation:

  • 2 turkey bologna sandwiches with light provolone cheese on multi-grain flatbread
  • a whole bunch of clementines
Hopefully one of the sandwiches will be used as a snack/dinner before the flight.  I cleverly stashed my sugar snap peas from yesterday's lunch in the office fridge last night, so I'll also have those for today's lunch as well.  Since I'm trying to be as unencumbered as possible today I chose this for my lunch bag:

It works for today.  Have a great weekend!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Repacked for Today

This is what I had for lunch today:
  • pulled chicken on a hamburger bun
  • sugar snap peas
  • clementines
  • extra BBQ sauce
Yep, it's exactly the same as yesterday.  And let me tell you people at work were Jell-US!  Everyone was asking what smelled so good.  Don't worry tomorrow will be something different because we're all out of pulled chicken.  My lord and master made a vegan broccoli potato leek soup that's probably very tasty and healthy but it's pureed...and green...and, well, I call it the "glue soup."  That color and texture is so unbearable to me.

Anyway, tomorrow is Friday and I'm on vacation for a week.  Yippee!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Bun Baby Bun

Today was one of those days.  I won't expand on it, but I will tell you what I had for lunch:
  • BBQ pulled chicken on a hearty bun
  • grapefruit cocktail
  • sugar snap peas
  • clementines
I actually had 4 of those clementines.  They are only about the size of a golf ball so 2 didn't seem like enough. 

I loves these hamburger buns.  They are hefty and have little bits of seeds and stuff in them that I like.  The flavor is great too.  I found out about their existence by scanning the "Our Products" section of the Food for Life website (internet coupon hunting on a Saturday night...jealous of my wild lifestyle yet?).  I made it my business to find them and try them out.  The only place that I've seen that sells them here in NYC is Fairway (cold section).  Anyway they are really good with salmon burgers or grilled portabello mushroom caps.  Yum!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Pulled In Two Directions

Today's lunch was inspired by a forbidden passion of mine.  Let me unburden myself to you:
I've been having a torrid affair for the past few weeks.  Well, sort of.  A few weeks ago I decided to treat myself (because I was late in the morning and didn't pack a lunch) to one of Pret's sinful BBQ Pulled Pork Wraps. It was the first time I had it and I knew that as soon as it touched my lips I was in trouble.  Now, I should be clear that the Pret wrap is NOT the most tasty or well prepared BBQ sandwich in the world.  In fact, it's pretty mediocre.  But I fell in love with the IDEA of eating a close facsimile of real American barbeque in the middle of the day.  I love barbeque!!  Ribs, brisket, chicken, tri-tip, anything slow cooked over a smokey grill and dripping with sauce needs to get. in. my. belly! 
So, instead of letting me go to physical and financial ruin, Mr. Man made batch of this delicious slow cooked pulled chicken.  He used the recipe from our well worn cook book.  But since he's a health nut he used chicken instead of pork and didn't add barbeque sauce.
I mixed 2 tablespoons of fancy organic barbeque sauce over 1/3 cup of the shredded chicken and rolled it up in a hearty whole wheat tortilla.  I can honestly say this was way better than the Pret wrap (which costs over $7).  It definitely was not as good as or even similar to what I would get at an all day Kansas City BBQ contest, but it did the satisfies my craving.  Besides, I've never been to Kansas City...heaven help me if I ever do go there or any other barbeque city. I'd never be able to go back to my version.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Oh Baloney!

Let's just make a fresh start, shall we?  Good.  Today's lunch was kind of ...meh. Checkah, check it out:
  •  turkey bologna and light provolone cheese wrapped in a TJ tortilla
  • fat free vanilla yogurt with unsweetened cocoa powder
  • double watermelon (all the way)
I've been boring lately.  Everyday it's been more or less the same ol' same ol'.  Our CSA has been getting down to the nitty gritty lately and it's pretty much just potatoes and onions now.  We are signing up for a winter CSA soon and hopefully that will bring more interesting stuff for me to be afraid to eat.  Until then, I might continue to retreat in the safety of bologna and fruit.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Bike, Eat, Bike Some More

I did the NYC Century Bike Tour this weekend.  That's right.  I rode my little ol' bicycle 100 miles around the Big Apple.  Boy, was I hungry.  I packed this:

  • Turkey bologna sandwich with low fat provolone and mayonnaise on a sandwich thin
  • Luna bar
  • Half a bagel with peanut butter and jelly
  • Banana
But, that was not my first meal of the tour.  I had to have a traditional New York breakfast.

I was lucky enough that Mandi, a/k/a The Bike Writer, let me ride along with her and group of friends.  She is the one who took that awesome picture of me triumphantly lifting her friend's bike.    

They also thought an early morning Coney Island hot dog was a well deserved treat after biking 20 miles to Brooklyn.  But after another 30 miles it was time for some real food.

That sandwich really hit the spot and I guzzled about a gallon of water after that.  Back on the bike, fed, and watered.

It was a great ride and I can't believe I actually accomplished it.  Last year I did only 35 miles of the course and I had planned to only ride 55 miles this year.  But when I got to the start at 6:00 a.m. I just figured I'd go for the full Monty.  It also helped immensely to ride with Mandi.  I would have been bored and sad and lonely without someone to talk to through the long flat stretches of road in front of us. 
Photo by Mandi
Until then, I'll just keep on riding.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Good Ideas and Very Bad Ideas

I thought I was so smart. Healthy chocolate in my lunch. Monday I had a somewhat familiar lunch with a volatile twist:
  • turkey salami (the best find ever!), low-fat provolone, light mayo on Trader Joe's sandwich thin/round/flatbread thingy
  • mini salad (mixed greens & bell peppers); I used the dressing I keep in the office fridge
  • fat-free Greek yogurt
  • cubed fart bars
That's right! Stupid fart bars that I bought on a whim in an attempt to make tangy/gritty/sour Greek yogurt more palatable. I've been trying to like Greek yogurt for over a year now and the only way I can stomach it is if there is something super sweet with in in each bite. I usually pour about a gallon of honey on it but loading up on all that sugar kind of defeats the "healthful" benefits. So I saw these:
and thought I'd beat the system. Only 90 calories and all that fiber! Well, friends let me tell you, I fought the law and the law won! These things are so weird and chemicalized that as soon as you eat them your stomach starts to give you what for. There was a rumble in the jungle for HOURS after I ate this thing. And it's not that it's too much fiber in one item because I eat broccoli and oatmeal and other real/natural foods that have at least 5 grams of fiber (the amount in 1 fart bar) and I never feel like a windbag with those. It's the weirdo synthetic fiber they put in these things that make them so awful for human consumption. I bet they just pour heaps and heaps of Metamucil in a big vat of processed oats and chocolate and then shape it into little rectangles and release it into the public. Anyway, rant over. Don't buy these. Breezing on...
I'm still trying to ween myself off the salad habit. Tuesday I indulged in one again. Pretty basic:
  • mixed greens
  • yellow bell peppers
  • broccoli
  • sugar snap peas
  • 1/2 cup garbanzo beans
  • 3 Tbsp fat-free feta (another great find)
  • balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing
Not much to say about this guy. Filling, delicious, and crunchy.
Today I went back to the drawing board and gave up on Greek yogurt all together and snazzed up an old stand by:
  • sugar snap peas
  • turkey salami sandwich (like on Monday)
  • watermelon
  • fat-free vanilla yogurt with cocoa powder
So the vanilla yogurt has a lot more sugar than the stupid Greek yogurt, but at least I can swallow it without gagging. But, I decided to gild the lily a bit by trying to make a sort of chocolate dessert with this stuff:
It worked! No extra sugar and it's a nice little treat after eating pretty healthy lunch. I'm liking the sandwich lunches this week. I'll probably stick with them. Unless, that is, I come up with some more brilliant ideas.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

New Kid On The Block

I have totally succumbed to my salad obsession. This week I ditched all my other usual lunch components and made a "big salad" every day thanks to a fancy new bowl.

As you can see, Ricky had to assure Fred that I wasn't going to abandon my beloved bento all together. Consider this sort of like a summer fling (that came just slightly after summer).
My salads were meatless this week since I've been kind of going overboard with fattening foods lately. I don't really miss meat when I eat salads anyway because I think I'm starting to develop a texture issue/food aversion to "wet meat" so it's better that I keep it out of any potentially wet environments. Basically, I don't like it when my chicken/fish/beef slime gets on my crisp fresh lettuce. I know, I'm weird. I'm working on it!
The basics of these salads are, well, basic:
  • mixed lettuces
  • red, yellow, or orange bell pepper
  • sugar snap peas
  • broccoli florets
  • feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup of garbanzo beans
  • balsamic vinaigrette dressing
I cook the sugar snap peas and the broccoli for a minute and half in the microwave and then spread them out on a plate and pop them in the fridge for a few minutes to cool off while I chop up the pepper and measure out my salad dressing.

Oh! So, I bought the bowl from this lunch spot called Just Salad because I saw someone else in my office with it. I forgot to bring my lunch one day (it happens) and decided to order one of these fancy NYC salads and have it delivered straight to my office. Ooh la la! Needless to say I was sorely disappointed. The lettuce was all manky because they chopped it up so much that it started to wilt. The vegetables were all soupy and droopy and it cost almost $10! So, I guess I paid for the bowl and the lesson: Don't forget your lunch anymore!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

End of Summer Lovin'

I guess summer is officially over since it's freezing cold today and raining cats and dogs. Last week was glorious and perfect weather and I rode my bike to work every day plus every day on the weekend. Anyway, enough reminiscing on to the food:

This represents another week of daily salads and a little innovation courtesy of a visit to a fancy hotel:
  • mixed greens with canned wild salmon, yellow peppers, and sugar snap peas
  • crispy red grapes
  • fat free Greek yogurt
  • mini pot of strawberry jam to go with the yogurt (genius!)
I had salad so often this summer that I started keeping a bottle of my favorite salad dressing in the refrigerator at work. I also started keeping fresh berries in that fridge to add to my oatmeal packets in the morning. This cut down on me having to carry so many things to work every day.
My fella made a small batch of his awesome barbeque pulled chicken. He normally makes a big pot of it in the slow cooker but he figured out a way to do it on the stove with just 3 chicken breasts that were rattling around in the freezer.
  • sugar snap peas
  • bell pepper with balsamic vinaigrette dipper
  • barbeque pulled chicken
  • watermelon
  • whole wheat sandwich thin
That barbeque sandwich was probably one of the best lunches of August. So much flavor! Hot and hearty!

Here we have an example of a very dull week of lunches. This was last week, that is, the week after the weekend we were cooped up in the apartment waiting for Hurricane Irene to sweep us away. All we did was cook every bit of food in the fridge. I stewed/roasted/canned about 25 pounds of tomatoes from our CSA and we chopped up a whole bunch of other vegetables that were about to go off and I made 2 quiches. Well, we ate quiche every day, twice a day last week.
Oh! We are still doing the CSA and I realized I never took any good pictures of our weekly haul. In the one above we got lots of tomatoes, corn, green bell peppers, little plums, summer squash/zucchinis, a red onion and a leek. That's a lot of fresh food for just 2 lonesome souls. And even though we love cooking and do cook a lot, it's kind of overwhelming and burdensome to have to come up with new ways to cook this stuff up. We kind of end up making the same things over and over again. I think we cook anything that uses the most vegetables in one dish (soups, stews, chilly, quiches, omelets, etc.)

Last week we got a whole bunch of peaches. Now, normal people would just eat fresh peaches and say, "Hooray, fresh peaches. Viva summer!" But I have developed ANOTHER allergy and can't eat any stone fruit unless I want my eyes to itch and my throat to close. So, poor me. The weird thing is that I can eat frozen peaches once they thaw out. So I read up on this allergy and it has something to do with the chemical composition of the fruit being the same as certain pollens and...blah blah blah. The point is, I can't eat the fruit raw. Again, for normal people this wouldn't be that much of big deal because they can just put the fruit in a pie. For me, cooked fruit is the stuff of nightmares. It's so slimy and sloppy and mushy and just plain gross. I still, to this day, have never eaten so much as a sliver of apple pie or cherry pie. It's also the combination of cooked fruit and "wet bread" together that gives me the creeps. I know pie crust in not really bread, but the part that touches the cooked fruit gets soggy and mushy and makes me want to cry. Ok, I was trying to make this a short, sweet, triumph of the will story so here is the payoff:
I made and ATE a peach crumble!!! It is cooked fruit and a crispy crumbly topping that does, indeed, touch the cooked fruit and get a little soggy. But I ate it. It helps that there is a ton of sugar and melted butter in there. Anyway, the point is that I lived to tell the tale. I have been to the mountaintop!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Ride Like The Wind

I worked a little late tonight, but I got home way faster than I expected because there was no wind pushing against me and my bicycle during my 10 mile journey home. I ride along the Hudson River here in NYC and sometimes it feels like I'm pedaling through mud when there is a breeze coming off the water. Tonight it was easy, no-breezy riding the whole way home. I made it from door to door in 50 minutes. It usually takes at least 62, sometimes even 70 minutes. one wants to hear about my cycling feats. Let's talk lunch:
  • sugar snap peas
  • chicken and chorizo chili
  • frozen peaches
  • crunchy bell peppers
I had the same exact lunch yesterday. And I'm going to have the same lunch tomorrow. It's predictable, but tasty.
I'm still doing breakfast at desk (the saddest parody of "breakfast in bed" known to humankind). I've been keeping a lot of produce in the office fridge at work. Every week I bring in some fresh berries and add them to my packet of oatmeal. I keep the box oatmeal in my desk drawer. The hard boiled egg comes from the batch I make every Sunday night. Are hard boiled eggs gross to you? I could see how they would be gross to other people. But I love 'em!

Monday, August 8, 2011

This Feels Weird

This is the first lunch in weeks that is not a salad. It feels funny not having a cool crunch in my box. Here's what I did have:
  • sugar snap peas
  • chicken and sausage chili
  • frozen pineapples
  • Puffins
We are going out of town this weekend and the Master of the House made this chili so we could use up the fresh produce we have left. It's got lots of fresh veggies in it and he used chorizo instead of the regular chicken basil sausage that we usually have. It's way more spicy than I'm used to, but still tasty! I think this is going to be lunch for the rest of the week. I've got to eat up all the other fresh vegetables in the house for dinner. Tonight I'm having a grilled portobello sandwich. Yum!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Summer Crunch

Hi! I'm alive.

See that's me back in May at the 5 Boro Bike Tour. Waaaay back in May. I packed a lunch to sustain me during the 42 mile ride. I stuck it in my basket.
Yikes, this was a long time ago...Cara Cara oranges were still in season.
I also packed a turkey and cheese wrap for the ride.

Now I'm just going to show you a tiny sample of the lunches I've been taking to work since we last chatted.

Those little beige pellets are Puffins. I was a little obsessed with them in June. Great in milk, but also perfect to crunch on as a snack/side dish at my desk. Puffins and salad have been pretty much the featured players in my lunches this summer. Lots of crunchiness.
Salad and Puffins!
Rinse. Repeat.
Now I'm kind of over Puffins. I had a few unfortunate run ins with the Cinnamon Puffins one too many times so ... Well, let's not go there. We were having such a nice catch-up.
I've been boiling a whole bunch of hard boiled eggs on Sunday night and packing them up for breakfast in the mornings. Good stuff.

That's all for now. I'm really going to try to get back to blogging the way I used to (i.e., more than once every 3 months). Also, I have to show you guys the delicious Summer Coq au Vain that I made in the slow cooker and have been gobbling up every day this week. I hope everyone is enjoying the summer!