Chilli Days

January 13, 2011

49 out of 50 states are covered in snow right now.

Mine is no exception.

Yesterday afternoon morning, Roomie and I woke up to a blanket of snow and ice outside of our window and were thrilled to find out that classes were cancelled. Glorious. Sledding > studying.

Of course, being the cheap college student I am, I don’t have a sled. Or the proper footwear. Lucky for me, my RA is a genius and informed me to wear rain boots. She also provided me with a sled.

Fabulous.

Yes, my ghetto ass sled was a box. No shame.

 

Come on, you didn’t think I managed to stay on, did you!?

My RA isn’t the only genius around here though. My brilliant neighbors discovered the most innovative sledding solution of this still very young century. Can you tell what it is?

No? Well, it’s a cookie sheet! I’ll tell you what, if you have a spare anywhere and you’ve still got snow on the ground, you need to get your toosh on that cookie sheet and find a hill to speed down. I am doubly sure that I would singlehandedly own any and all of my competition in Bobsledding. London 2012, anyone?

After two hours of intense sledding, we were pretty frozen. My hands were numb, my sweater was filled with ice, and I had muddy smears on my peacoat. I may or may not have looked like I peed my pants. I knew what was in order: a warm, comforting, warm, delicious, warm, and filling lunch. That was warm. Enter one pot chilli!

Chilli To Warm Your Bones

This delicious chilli is easy to prepare and perfect for heating yourself up after a romp in the snow. The spices are completely versatile, so you can adjust the heat to your taste and use whatever ones you want or have on hand. Serves 4-5.

You’ll need:

2 cans of beans, your choice. I used kidney beans.

1 onion, chopped

1 bell pepper, chopped

2 cups TVP, hydrated*

1 can of no-salt added diced tomatoes, with the liquid

1 cup vegetable broth

1 tablespoon chilli powder

1/2 tablespoon cumin

1/2 tablespoon onion powder

1/2 tablespoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon dried basil

 

*TVP, or textured vegetable protein, is pretty easy to rehydrate. Click here for the 411.

To start your chilli, heat up a large pot (large enough to fit everything) with a drizzle of good olive oil. I feel like Ina Garten when I say that.

From foodnetworkhumor.com

Once your EVOO is heated (Oh God, now I feel like Rachael Ray!), toss in your onion and, if you’re feeling saucy, go ahead and toss in a tablespoon of minced garlic. Once the onion is translucent, add your TVP and bell pepper and cook for a few more minutes. Heck, you could even roast the pepper beforehand for even more deliciousness. Crazy talk.

Now you’re at the point where you need the TVP to absorb all of your spices, so go ahead and add them in before you add in your canned tomatoes and vegetable stock. If you want to be even more of a risk taker, you could pour in a bottle of Blue Moon. Hey, I won’t tell, especially if you live in a dry dorm. 😉

Once everything is in your pot, bring it to a boil. Then let it all simmer and hang out for as little or as long as you like. The flavors will intensify and meld and become the most comforting chilli you ever imagined. It’ll warm you up enough to go play in the snow some more.

Just be sure to wear the right shoes.

How did you spend your snow day(s)?

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Blueberries, blueberries…

December 14, 2010

Now that is the bestest! It’s yumma!

Fruit Huggin’

July 16, 2010

Hello from New York!

I’ve got a lot to tell you guys about, but I’ll save it for later, because for now we have more pressing issues. Did you know that July is Hug a Fruit Month? Thanks to the oh so beautiful Katie and her amazing brain, we have the opportunity to post our favorite fruit huggin’ pictures.

Roomie and I did hug a fruit in Times Square last night, but I’m not sure it was the right kind..

Perhaps this is!

Chillin with a Pac Man shaped watermelon!

I am aware of the fact that I look like a mega creeper, thank you.

A new kind of milk mustache from my epic banana and spinach smoothie.

Ring ring ring ring ring ring ring…. banana phone.

So there you have it. Me hugging/doing various activities with my favorite fruits. Now it’s your turn. Grab your camera and your melons and snap a picture. Erm, not that kind of picture.

Cool Beans

July 11, 2010

You know who is a cool bean (and currently my desktop AND cell phone wallpaper)? Michael Bublé. You guys know I was heading to his concert last night, and I’ve gotta say, it did NOT disappoint.. even though some 15 hardcore fans and yours truly waited outside the gate for him for 2 hours after his show and he simply drove past without stopping to sign things. But I did meet some of his band members… and they may or may not have invited me to go to the bar with them. Michael is forgiven for not saying hello on account of his FACE.

Case in point:

He also did his own take on Michael Jackson’s Billie Jean. I’d post the video on here but my girly screams are a bit distracting. 😉

Speaking of beans, I’ve also become obsessed with a fairly awesome one recently: the Adzuki (or aduki) bean. Never heard of it? It’s pronounced a-dookie bean. Say it in front of a kid and they’ll think you’re epic. It comes all the way from China, but it’s popular in Japan and is becoming popular here in the US.  So it’s kind of like the Utada Hikaru… but in bean form. You can find it (the bean, not Utada) at a specialty grocer’s like Earth Fare or at any Asian market.

Aww, isn’t he cute? But don’t be fooled. This tiny little guy packs a flavor and nutritional punch. It’ll hit you with:

  • B vitamins
  • Fiber
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Potassium
  • Protein
  • Folate
  • Yummy taste!

Gillian McKeith, a nutritionist back home in the UK says that the aduki bean is “the weight loss bean” because it is very low in calories but it is supa high in fiber and protein, which help you stay fuller for longer. She’s also obsessed with looking at people’s poos (no, seriously… she does and it’s disturbing) and says that the bean “acts as a natural diuretic to relieve the body of excess fluids. It also removes unwanted mucus, congestion and stools, and balances metabolism for weight management.” The fiber in adzuki beans is soluble fiber, which helps remove LDL, or “bad” cholesterol.

These suckers are a great and complete protein when paired with a whole grain, like brown jasmine rice. Eat it with chopsticks, listen to Utada Hikaru, and you can pretend like you’re really in Japan. I may or may not have done that a few times.

You can get these lovelies both dried and in cans.

If you go the dried route, soak them in water overnight or even use a pressure cooker or crock pot to cook them through.

If you buy ’em in a can, make sure they have no salt or sugar added, and do your best to find organic.

Oh.. and a word of advice. When you introduce these little joys into your diet, make sure you take it slowly. Otherwise you might have, in the words of Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin, a “mudslide in your pants.”

So there you have it. Two cool beans. And Gillian McKeith. But she’s a nut.

PS, wanna win a cookbook from Mama Pea? Click here!

PPS, do you want to win 5 freeee bags of Food Should Taste Good chips? Clickity click here!

PPPS, do you like pressing tofu? You could win a tofuXpress, so click here!

If I were to host a giveaway, what would you guys want?

A Wishlist

July 10, 2010

There are a lot of things in life that I look forward to. One is getting married (I would like to apologize in advance to whoever my poor future husband is… and my father will want to know: check or cash?). Bridal registries excite me. I think it’s the idea of being able to go into a store and create a giant list of silly things that I’d love to have but never buy for myself.

Exhibit A:

Wafflesicles!

Or maybe I’d put this on my list:

Because everyone needs the latest headlines printed on their toilet paper.

I know I’d have to ask for this.

Snack-curity system!

I have a sneaky feeling that my husband would totally try to steal all my tofu.

But I think number one on my list would have to be this little gem.

Of course, I would also take the opportunity of having a registry to ask for things I actually would put to good use in my house. The whole list wouldn’t be a joke, just the majority of it. 😉

Because if there’s one thing I actually would want and use on a regular basis, it’s this beauty.

That’s a legit panini press. I’d ask for this because I would be able to make what I had for breakfast today, but it would be approximately 239480394x better.

The Best Breakfast Sandwich You’ll Ever Have

2 slices of cinnamon raisin bread (I like Ezekiel brand)

1 banana

2 tablespoons peanut butter

1 t maple syrup

Simply spread some PB on your bread (I used both cinnamon raisin bread and peanut butter in keeping with the theme of deliciousness) and put some banana slices on top of it. Make sure they stick! Top the slices with a little bit of maple syrup, and then slap that sucker onto a panini press… or in my case, an ancient sandwich maker.

Just a side note: make sure you grease/spray that bad boy.

Let your sammich cook for about five minutes, until the banana inside has warmed through and melted, and your bread is nice and toasty. The end result should be THIS epic beast on your plate:

I can’t believe how tasty this was. It was a good change from the usual cereal. I had a lot of fun composing my mental registry list while I ate.

The last thing on my list would be..

Pretend the above steak is actually poor, innocent husband’s booty.

Only not really.

Maybe.

Future husband, whoever you are… you have been warned.

I’ll give you a hint: it rhymes with Shmew Shork Shmity.

And it looks a little something like this:

Yep. NYC, baby.

My fabulous roommate offered to take me to Boston and New York with her in July. Of course I obliged. NYC is on my bucket list, dudes. We’ll fly into the city, then take the train to Boston a few days later. Her momma has a convention in Massachusetts, and so while she’s gettin’ her conference on, the roomie and I will be taking Boston by storm!

So here’s my question to you… what’s a vegan to do in Boston and NYC (but especially Boston, seeing as I’ll be spending more time there)? I’ve googled stuff to do, but I’m definitely interested in what you guys have to say! I’m interested in anything vegan or anything funky. Seriously, try me. Shops, parks, restaurants, anything! I’m hoping we will be in the area near One Lucky Duck at some point in NYC, but that’s all I have on my list so far. I know I’m not going to be able to do absolutely everything I want (because it’s their trip, I’m just lucky enough to be tagging along), but I need more things to do so that I can avoid doing work for my online summer course. 😉

Thanks in advance, lovelies!

Blueberry Failcrepes

June 13, 2010

You would expect this to be super awesome, right?

I mean, it’s blueberries…

…and whole wheat-y goodness (1 cup)…

…with a flax egg…

(1 T of ground flax + 3 T water, mix until gelatinous)

combined with…

1 C almond milk, maple syrup, vanilla and more bloobs.

You’d think making crepes was easy, but it’s harder than it looks.

It went from a nice, thin layer of awesomeness to this…

PLUS enough smoke to set off the fire alarm.

What an epic failcrepe.

What’s your latest cooking fail? What’s your most embarrassing one?