What I’ve been eating for Breakfast

Hello again! I’m back, just like I promised.

Want to hear about what I’ve been eating for breakfast lately? It’s such a fascinating topic, haha!

This isn’t just what I’ve been eating lately. This is what I’ve had for breakfast almost every day for the last 4 months straight.

What is it?

A GREEN SMOOTHIE.

green smoothie

Ugh…Laura!!! Boooorrrring! How many times have green smoothies been blogged about on the internet? Too many!

Well believe me, I am right there with you. This came about over the summer. I think I stumbled upon a smoothie recipe (and there are approx 19 billion on the internet) and this was actually for a 30 day smoothie “challenge” I believe. The essence of this challenge was basically to have this drink every day for 30 days and by the end you would notice clearer skin (count me in!), improved energy, etc.

Well, I had absolutely no intention of doing the 30 day challenge. I just thought it sounded good so I made it one day and my husband and I both loved it. We felt vibrant and oh so proud of ourselves for consuming a days worth of veggies for breakfast! So I made it again the next day, and the next and so on because we just really like it. The days we haven’t made it we missed it.

When I first saw this recipe I thought it looked like soooo many ingredients and like it would just be a huge, intensive, not to mention expensive process. But it really isn’t. I mean, this recipe makes 2 servings so you’re basically just eating 1/2 an apple and 1/2 a banana a day which really is not a lot of produce. It just looks like it. I haven’t done the math on it but I didn’t notice a spike in my grocery budget because of it.

I change the ingredients up so that I’m using produce that’s in season, but this is the basic recipe. Oh and I do use all organic produce because I think it’s important when you are eating large quantities of produce like this. Otherwise that would really be a lot of chemicals to ingest on a daily basis!

GREEN SMOOTHIE RECIPE (makes 2 servings)

  • 16 ounces filtered water
  • 3 tablespoons (a hearty squirt) lemon juice
  • large handful or 2 of spinach
  • large handful or 2 of kale or romaine lettuce
  • 2 stalks of celery or 1/2 a peeled cucumber
  • 1 banana (peeled, sliced and frozen preferred)
  • 1 apple or peach or pear or 1/2 cup berries
  • 1 small handful of parsley (optional)
  • 2 inch chunk of aloe vera, peeled (optional)
  • protein powder (optional)

Blend. Drink.

vitamix

Here it is! It’s basically a full blender!

And in the background there you can see the tile back splash we installed over the summer. Photos coming soon…

One thing I like to add is aloe vera. Not the juice but a whole chunk! It’s supposed to be good for sooo many things like skin elasticity & intestinal health. I can’t taste it in there at all.

aloe.jpg

I’ve been able to find it at my local grocery store.

And last…dun dun dun…PROTEIN POWDER!

Boy, isn’t that a hot topic?! Such controversy around protein powder these days. What should you use? Soy? Whey? Hemp? Nothing?

When I first started on a plant based diet Vega protein was the only plant based, non-soy, protein on the market. Now there are SO MANY great plant based protein powders. VitaCost sells pretty much every product on the planet.

I have been using Vega protein for nearly a decade now and I do still like it. Plus Costco sells it so that’s a bonus. But lately (last 2 weeks) I’ve been making an effort to consume less Stevia. If you haven’t noticed, it’s used everywhere now and I’m starting to question if it really is all that healthy? You can google that topic and you’ll get some interesting results. My gut tells me-If it tastes too good to be true, it probably is.

Because Vega does contain stevia I started sampling some different protein powders trying to find an unsweetened alternative. Even “unflavored” protein powder has stevia in it. Weird.

The one I ended up buying and am now using is Raw Protein Unflavored protein.  You wouldn’t want to drink this stuff plain with just water but it is fine in a smoothie. The texture is a little chalky but I can’t really complain- I mean it’s basically a bunch of plants! It also contains digestive enzymes and probiotics so I feel like I’m getting a lot of good stuff at once. And the price is better than Vega too so that’s even better!

My husbands preferred protein powder is Jay Robbs Egg White Protein Vanilla. As the name implies the protein comes from egg whites so it’s generally easier to digest than whey or plant protein.

Alright, this is turning into a novel so I’ll wrap up here with a photo of Rocco! Last weekend we went to visit my Grandmother and we stayed in a hotel that had a fireplace. We bought one of those fire logs and Rocco saw fire for the first time!

rocco

My mom says the caption on this photo should be “Father, how will Santa bring me presents if there’s a fire in the fireplace?”, haha!

The answer of course is that this Santa shops on Amazon so all his gifts come UPS, ha! That reminds me, I just ordered him a really cute coat. Stay tuned…

And of course have a Happy Thanksgiving!

Laura

 

 

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Creamy Carrot Curry Soup

Wow, I can’t believe it’s been 4 months since my last post!

I had a busier than usual summer followed by a busier than usual fall and now, here we go, it’s almost time for the holidays!

I have so many new recipes, stories and photos to share so I’m just sitting here wondering where to begin…

I could show pictures of our new kitchen counter tops or pictures from our latest adventures, BUT, you know where my heart really lies: Food & Rocco!

Let’s start with this soup. On the surface it sounds really boring: carrot soup, bleh. But I promise you, this one is worth a try! I’ve been eating it for 3 weeks straight and I’m still not sick of it. It is very light and warming and just perfect for this time of year. I also love that it takes about 10 minutes to prepare (using a food processor) and then it just passively cooks the rest of the time. Perfect for those hurried Sunday evenings when you reeeeeeallly don’t want to cook your lunches for the week!

soup

And as a side note, you’ll notice there’s TOFU in this recipe! That’s right, sometime in the last 4 months I started sliding back into my veggie ways. I’m not following any strict regimens these days. I’m not vegan, I’m not paleo, I’m just eating what feels good to my body. For the most part I’ve gone back to a plant based diet but I’m not shunning the odd egg or cheesecake or piece of bread slathered in butter. I’ll do a “what I’m eating now” post soon. How exciting…not!

And of course there’s Rocco! My sweet, sweet, Rocco. If you need more Rocco in your life, follow him on Instagram @Rocco_the_Minpin. I do post pictures of him regularly.

rocco fort.jpg
Here he is in his “fort”. This is a side table that happens to be placed over a heat vent. He takes all his toys (and my socks) and hangs out under there when the heat is on!

4 months ago he was still recovering from that mystery illness. We still have no idea what caused him to get so sick. We think he might have been bitten by a Black Widow spider but some people say he would have had necrotic tissue or we at least would have seen some swelling. He had absolutely no bite mark but all the symptoms were that of a Black Widow bite. Paralysis, sudden illness…it was so bad.

It actually took him 8 weeks to fully recover and regain all of his usual behaviors. And now he is so great! Maybe even better than before because now he seems to understand that we saved his life so he has a deeper level of trust for us.

Here are 2 Rocco highlights:

  1. I taught him how to “give me a hug” when I get home from work. This melts my heart. You can watch the video here: https://goo.gl/photos/mpU7j6tqbGYJ4pXi6
  2. And I also taught him “snuggle time with Mom”. If I sit down and yell “Rocco, snuggle time with Mom!” he will come running from wherever he’s been and dive under the blanket.rocco snuggle.jpg

Alright, here is that soup recipe!

Creamy Carrot Curry Soup

  • 6 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 small onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 inch piece of ginger, peeled and diced
  • 2 teaspoons diced garlic
  • 3 cups vegetable broth
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or to taste
  • 1 block extra firm or firm tofu (from refrigerated section), cubed

If you have a food processor, use it as it will make this recipe very easy and fast to prepare.

Heat coconut oil in a medium size saucepan over medium high heat. Add the onion and saute until translucent. Add the ginger, garlic, curry, turmeric & salt and cook 1 more minute, stirring occasionally.

Next, add the chopped carrot, vegetable broth and coconut milk and stir. Increase heat to high and bring the soup to a boil. Once it’s boiling, reduce heat to low and simmer uncovered for 15-20 minutes.

Allow the mixture to cool slightly and then blend either using a regular blender or an immersion (stick) blender.

Transfer blended soup to a large bowl/corning-ware dish and add in the diced tofu.

Well it’s so good to be back and I promise I will be back soon with what I’ve been having for breakfast every single morning for the last few months!

Laura