Monday, January 31, 2011

I've moved!

Hello readers,

I've moved to - check out the new site!!!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

A day out with Rah

Midday I met my sister for a little shopping and lunch at New England Soup Factory in Newton. Everyday NESF has 9-12 soups, and so many delicious flavors to choose from. :)

Both Sarah and I decided on the Skinny Vegetable and shared a pickle and tuna salad on the side! It was a great meal filled with veggies which we both loved.

We then headed to Filene's Basement, and China Fair where I picked up a french press! I am so excited to have coffee tomorrow morning!! Rah and I then parted ways but plan to workout together on Wednesday at her gym!

Then, Dave and I ran out to Whole Foods to get our groceries for the week minus some veggies from The Basket! It's all about meal planning ...
On the menu this week:
- black beans and sausage with quinoa
- pizza
- chicken chili
- brown rice stiry fry
We came home and took Luna for a walk and then I got on the spin bike for an hour!
For dinner tonight: panang curry with chicken, onions, peas, carrots, celery, and red peppers over brown rice noodles! It was spicy and delicious!

As per usual, Luna and Dave had a round of ball down the hall after dinner- look at that love!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Oatmeal Truffles

3/4 cup of Bob's gf oats
1/4 cup of good semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips
1/4 tsp. of vanilla
2 tbsp. of skim/lowfat milk
2 tbsp. of peanut butter( I used crunchy, but next time I'll use creamy)

Mix the milk,peanut butter, vanilla, and chocolate chips in a saucepan on low heat until the chocolate melts. Then take the mixture off the heat, and add in the oats. Mix well. Form into balls. Let set for 10-15 minutes in the fridge. Makes 10 balls.

O' What a Meal

Before going to 'secret' dinner with Dave tonight I took Luna for a walk- look at ALL this snow!

Sorry Luna- I know I'm going slow...

After the walk I came home and got ready for dinner! Then, Dave came home (YEAH!) and told me the surprise - Oleana!!!! I have always wanted to go!

It was the BEST meal I've had in Boston, and I've been here over seven years!! First off our waitress was super helpful about what I could and couldn't eat, and even spoke with Ana Sortun about piece of each dish JUST to make sure! Nothing is better than great customer service!!
Note: I felt a little weird taking my big camera so I had to use my iphone- sorry!
We started with a couple things from the Meze menu(I could eat it all!):

Hummus with Basturma & Tomato( it is suppose to come with pita but instead they gave me winter vegetable crudite!)
Spinach Falafel with Tahini, Yogurt, Beets & Crinkled Cress(I could eat this EVERYDAY- mind blowing)
Local Scallops with a parsnip base and sesame seeds(night special)

Then, Dave and I ordered one more plate each! Phew! We had to it was just too good!! His of course, was a main course: swordfish involtini with pine nuts-currant stuffing, romanesco & a chickpea pancake!

I ordered one more meze: Vermont quail with baharat, barberries and pistachios! The chef made a special switch with the pistachio to make sure I could have a little on my dish! Thank you!

THEN, if you can believe- we got DESSERT- the chocolate creme brulee with date terrine, rose petal jam & cocoa sherbert! It was breathtaking beautiful ...the picture does NOT do it justice! It was delish!!!

Then, to top it off our friend from the summer, David was bartending!~ Yeah!
If you live close to Boston, head to Oleana for an amazing meal, service, and atmosphere! I sound like a zagat review... ha!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Book Group

I had book group at my house last tonight- I do love cooking for a crowd!

On the menu:

Roasted Eggplant Dip
White Bean and Cashew Dip
Blue corn chips & veggies
African Sweet Potato & Peanut Soup
Turkey Chili
Mini Mocha Cheesecakes
Brownie Bites

Luna wasn't in the mood to help me - she just sat there next to her new buddies like a queen(Thanks Aubs for the pillows)!

In the middle of cooking and cleaning the house, I took a break to wrap- Eat, Memory- for our yearly book exchange!

Then, my Canvas on Demand order was dropped off...

Finally it was 7pm and the ladies were coming- through snow and ice they walked... Everyone was thankful I had made soup to warm them up!

My mug o' chili I snacked on while people were walking in ;)

Blue corn chips,veggies, and dips for snacking.... I forgot to take a picture of the soups!

Due to the snow we had only about half our of ladies show up.... but it was definitely enough for our book exchange ...

Did I mention that there also has to be a 'nip' on the top of the present! Ha!

While speaking about Cutting for Stone, our book, the ladies and I noshed on mini cheesecakes, and brownie bites for dessert!

Now, on to shoveling out - we got ANOTHER 10 -12 inches!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Maple Nut Granola

I've actually been eating cereal in the morning with a banana, and decided it would be good to make some fresh granola to have for the next two weeks!
My ingredients
Maple Nut Granola

4 cups of Bobs gf oats
1/2 cup of pecans
1/2 cup of almonds
1/3 cup of canola oil
1/8 cup of maple syrup( I took a picture of honey, but didn't use it!)
1/8 cup of agave nectar
1/4 tsp. of salt.
Preheat the oven t0 350F. Mix the oats and nuts together and toast in oven for 10 minutes. During that time mix the oil, syrup and nectar together. Take the oats/nuts out of the oven and mix with the oil mixture while hot. Bring the oven temperature down to 300F. Spray a baking sheet with oil. Place the warm oat mixture on the baking sheet and bake for 22-24 minutes. Take out of the oven and let cool. The mixture will break into pieces! Makes 2 quarts of granola.

Since, Luna's destructive week, I've been wearing these trail shoes in the snow- ugh!

BUT today my new pair of Sorels came in the mail! Yeah! No more wet feet... pants... cold toes... Note: they look purple but there are actually green!!

After some major essay writing today and a walk with Luna b. I came home and got the bbq chicken ready for the arepas.

In our little corn pockets tonight:
freshly pulled bbq chicken
Cabot cheddar
fresh squeezed lime juice

I could only eat two, but Dave took care of the last one for me ;)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese & Roasted Eggplant Dip

Brrr... it was a cold one today. To warm us up tonight, I made butternut squash mac and cheese for dinner.

I also wanted to get ahead of my book group cooking for Wednesday so I made roasted eggplant dip while the butternut squash was cooking.

Roasted Eggplant Dip

-1 medium eggplant diced, skin on
- 2 red peppers, seeded and diced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp. of salt
- 1/4 tsp. of black pepper
- 1-2 tbsp of garlic
- 1 tbsp of tahini
- 1/4 + cup of fresh parsley(I love parsley so I added about 1/2 cup)

Preheat the oven to 400F and place the eggplant, red peppers, garlic coated with olive oil, salt & pepper into a roasting pan. Roast for 35-45 minutes until the vegetables are tender.

Then add all the roasties, tahini and parsley to a food processor! Pulse until desired consistency! Enjoy warm or let cool slightly and enjoy!

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese(adapted from Martha Stewart)

The beginning: Tinkyada pasta shells & a peeled butternut squash...

- 1 small/medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into small cubes( 3 cups)
- 1 cup low sodium chicken stock
- 1 1/2 cups skim or 1% milk... actually it doesn't matter
- small shake of nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. coarse salt & black pepper
- 1 bag of tinkyada(gluten free) shells
- 1 1/2 cups of Cabot extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated
4 tbsp. of parmesan or romano cheese, grated
1/2 cup part-skim ricotta cheese


- Preheat oven to 375F. Combine squash, chicken broth, and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the squash is tender, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from heat. Blend contents with ricotta cheese using a blender, immersion blender, or food processor. Stir in nutmeg, salt and black pepper.

- Cook the pasta while the sauce is simmering- follow directions on the box. Drain and transfer to a large bowl and add cheddar cheese, squash mixture, and 2 tbsp of parm cheese.

- Coat a medium/large baking pan with cooking spray or olive oil, and place the squash/shell mixture in the dish. Sprinkle with remaining parm cheese and more cheddar if you like! Bake covered with foil for 20 minutes. Uncover and bake for about 30 minutes. Serve immediately!

Note: this dish is so creamy and delicious... it looks like 'from a box' mac & cheese- a real kid pleaser!!

While the mac and cheese was cooking I roasted some broccoli, zucchini, and brussel sprouts.


Time for bed... an early morning for me at the gym!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

A night with JFK

Last night Dave and I went to an event at the JFK Library & Museum . What a beautiful setting ... with some wonderful people!
I started with a glass of red wine and some veggies and dip before dinner.

Then, for dinner there were three different salads and soups along with roast beef and chicken. I decided on arugula salad with some sliced stalter chicken and a small cup of fish soup.

Dessert was everything mini: brownies, truffles and chocolate strawberries. I had two truffles and a strawberry with some decaf tea!

We had a wonderful time even in all this snow and cold!!

Today, we met some friends at Centre Street Cafe for lunch.

Nyssa and I shared some cheese grits before our main meals arrived!!

I decided on the Potatoes Santa Cruz(red bliss potatoes sauteed with onions under a mountain of vegetables topped with Vermont cheddar and salsa). It was a great mid day pick me up with my ladies!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Busy Afternoon

I started to feel better mid-morning just in time. My friend Nyssa was coming over for lunch and a walk to A.Quinn to see Paula- the BEST hairdresser ever!! To fuel us for our walk I decided to whip up Thai mini meatloafs with rice noodles sauteed with cashews, red peppers, and scallions garnished with cilantro.

When we came home I had TWO yes TWO packages at my doorstep! A huge box from Bob' s Red Mill and Lilly from Rue La La.

Then, I made a new dip: cannellini beans with roasted cashews, red peppers, garlic and parsley! It was delicious- I'll post it soon!

On to another walk in the snow with Luna b. and some thesis work. Then, POOF it was 5:00 and Dave was on his way home. We made arepas stuffed with leftover chili, cilantro and Cabot and parsnip fries for dinner.

Other than feeling sick this morning, I would say this was a GREAT day with some delicious food!! :)