Fit 'N' Well Mommy

Being a mommy doesn't always mean sacrifice

Cauliflower Rice and a typical Wednesday August 22, 2012

As promised, here is the recipe for the Cauliflower Rice that I made for dinner last night. It was good, though a little on the mushy side, since I accidentally pulsed the cauliflower a too long in the food processor. Also, I don’t know what it is, but during and after eating Cauliflower Rice, my husband and I always feel really warm and start to sweat. I don’t add any hot chili peppers or many spices, so I’m not sure what causes it…weird! If you make this recipe, let me know if you experience the same thing! Since I add meat to this dish, it is a perfect one-pot meal!

The line-up that went into the Cauliflower Rice.

Cauliflower Rice (Mediterranean Style): (serves 4)

– 2 heads cauliflower

– 1 red onion (diced)

– 1/2 cup marinated artichoke hearts (chopped)

– 1/2 cup sun dried tomatoes (chopped)

– 1/2 cup kalamata olives (sliced in half)

– 4 Italian sausages (diced) or 12 oz. of chicken (chopped)

– 2 cloves of garlic (minced)

– 1/4 cup feta cheese

-2 Tbsp olive oil

– 1 tsp Italian seasoning

– pinch of salt and pepper (to taste)

Directions:

1. Wash and chop cauliflower. Place in a large microwaveable dish and microwave on high for 7-10 minutes (until steamed).

2. Meanwhile, heat a large pan over medium heat and add olive oil and garlic. Next, add chicken or sausages and cook until browned (a few minutes).

3. Add onion and cook until softened.

4. Once cauliflower is steamed, place into a food processor and pulse, until it is the consistency of rice (you may need to do this in two batches). *Make sure not to “over pulse” it, or the cauliflower will become mushy when cooked.

5. Add cauliflower, sun dried tomatoes, olives, artichoke hearts, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper and saute for a few minutes. Cook until cauliflower becomes browned.

6. Divide rice amongst four plates and sprinkle feta cheese on top. Enjoy!

Cooking it all together.

The finished product!

On to today: Happy Hump Day! This week seems to be flying by, which is leaving me with not enough time to get everything done for Keenan’s birthday party on Saturday, EEK! I still haven’t decided on what kind of cake I’m making. Since Keenan’s party is all about his “favorites,” I thought I would make a peanut butter chocolate pie or cake, but now, I’m not sure. He loves ice cream so much (especially ice cream cones), so now, I am thinking about doing a peanut butter ice cream cake. I’ve been looking at different recipes, but I haven’t found anything that I really like. Also, I need to make something that I can frost with whipped cream or cream cheese, since I’m decorating the top of the cake/pie as Elmo’s face (using red and orange m&ms). I’m getting a little stressed since I only have a couple of days (my husband thinks I’m crazy, since it’s only Keenan’s 2nd birthday, but I just want things to be nice and delicious, too!). If you have any suggestions and/or recipe ideas, please let me know!

This morning, Keenan woke-up at 8:00 a.m., whoohoo!! It was SO nice to sleep-in, but we had swim class, so we had a very rushed breakfast (and no coffee for me!) to get out the door on time. Keenan was all about being a “Firefighter” this morning, so it was like pulling teeth to get him dressed and ready to go. But, we made it (though, we were a little late, as usual).

Our little Firefighter!

After class, we ran some errands at Target and Michaels for Keenan’s birthday, which took FOREVER! Why is it that when you are in a hurry, the sales associates move SO slowly when you are just trying to check-out and go? It was like everyone who worked at Target and Michaels today was in slow motion!

Anyhow, once we got back to the home front, I made Keenan a turkey and cheese sandwich on a sandwich thin with a piece of torta and some nectarine. He was so hungry that he inhaled everything in less than 10 minutes! I think swimming took it out of him! After he finished, I gave him a little piece of my mom’s banana bars that she gave us on Monday. These bars are like heaven…moist, dense and delicious (with a cream cheese frosting)! For my lunch, I had my “typical,”  a turkey sandwich with lettuce, tomato and mustard on a sandwich thin with baby carrots and a nectarine. After re-evaluating my eating habits last week (after we got back from Alaska), I’m trying to pay extra attention to my portions and protein amounts, since I put on a few pounds. I’m hoping these few pounds will come off sooner, rather than later!

After lunch (and after I put Keenan down for his nap), I made myself an iced coffee, since I didn’t have a chance to make my latte this morning. It was SOOOO needed! Well, we are off to CrossFit this afternoon. Yesterday’s WOD was short, sweet and brutal: 100 double unders (which I’m still trying to master after several months of doing CF), 50 air squats and then max ring pushups in 6 minutes. I’m curious about today, since it is “gymnastics day,” my favorite!

For dinner, we are having country style (boneless) pork ribs (most likely grilled) and grilled eggplant with a balsamic vinaigrette. Have a great rest of your day!

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Friday Favorites December 8, 2012

TGIF! Look where “Peanut” was this morning…sitting on top of our Advent Calendar! Keenan was very happy that she was not playing with his toys and back by the couch!

Enjoying the view from the Advent Calendar!

Enjoying the view from the Advent Calendar!

Anyhow, I’m glad it is Friday, but anxious about tomorrow: my first real CrossFit competition! I didn’t sleep well last night in anticipation for it and I know tonight isn’t going to be any different. I am going to go there tomorrow and do my best, give it 100% and have fun (at least try to!) At the end of the day, I know I will be glad that I competed, but I will also be VERY relieved! My husband and I are planning a special “at home date night” tomorrow night with a truffle brie cheese that we picked up at Costco, as a little reward for competing; I can’t wait!

On Sunday, I’m looking forward to a nice relaxing family day of finishing up our homemade Christmas gifts, baking and looking at Christmas lights in the Fab 40’s neighborhood of Sacramento (such a great place to look at lights!). I can’t wait to see Keenan’s reaction to all of the lights!

Since it is Friday, it is time for “Friday Favorites!” I love Fridays, because it is nice to look back on the week and think about all of the great things that happened and great things we ate! Don’t get me wrong, I love that Fridays also equal the end of a long week and the start of the weekend, too!

Favorite Moments:

  • Singing with Keenan in the car to the song, “Someone I Used to Know” at the top of our lungs! He loves that song so much that we have to play it at least twice when we are driving (if he had his way all the time, we would ONLY listen to that song!).
  • Watching Keenan find “Peanut” every morning and trying not to laugh when he gets so irritated that she is playing with his toys.
  • Playing with the box of baby wipes!

    Having fun with his empty box of wipes!

    Having fun with his empty box of wipes!

  • Dancing with my husband and Keenan to Christmas songs and playing “Ring Around the Roses!”

Favorite Eats:

Serious about his No Oat Oats and Coconut Whipped Cream!

  • Paleo Pancakes topped with Coconut Whipped Cream

    Such a yummy breakfast!

    Such a yummy breakfast!

  • Turkey Wraps

    Still one of my favorite things to have for lunch!

Keenan is waking up, so it is time to head outside for a walk while Keenan rides his trike and then some piano time playing Christmas songs! Have a great evening and weekend!

Questions: What were your favorite moments and/or eats from this week? Do you ever get so nervous for an event/race that you wonder why you signed up in the first place? How do you calm your nervous energy and tell yourself you will be fine prior to an event and/or race? I am a competitive person and have always loved competition, but every time before an event, I get SO nervous! Even though I know things will be okay in the end, I can’t stop feeling anxious.

REMINDER: There is still time to win a box of the BEST popcorn EVER!! Angie’s Popcorn giveaway ends next Tuesday, December 11th at 8 p.m. PST!! Click here to enter!

 

Enjoying a Saturday at home September 22, 2012

Last night’s dinner turned out great! The Cauliflower pizza was delicious, though, it definitely didn’t have the texture of an actual pizza crust. It was lightly toasted, rich in flavor and very satisfying! As a bonus, my husband and I split the entire pizza because the crust was all cauliflower (with one egg and a little Greek yogurt added)! We will definitely be making this again!

Our beautiful pizza ready to eat!

Cauliflower Pizza: (serves 2)
 Adapted from Megan at Detoxinista

Ingredients;

– 4 cups steamed cauliflower rice (about one medium head)

– 1 egg, beaten

– 1/3 cup Greek yogurt

– 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

– pinch of salt and pepper

– 2 roma tomatoes

– 1/4 cup basil (chopped)

– 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (or you could use fresh mozzarella cut in medallions)

– 5-6 oz. chopped chicken

– 1/2 cup tomato/pasta sauce

Directions:
1. Preheat your oven to 400F.
2. To make the cauliflower rice, pulse batches of raw cauliflower florets in a food processor, until a rice-like texture is achieved.
3. Place pulsed cauliflower in a microwavable safe dish, add 1/4 cup of water, cover and cook in the microwave for 6 minutes (to steam). Once it is steamed, drain into a fine-mesh strainer.
4. Once you’ve strained the rice, transfer it to a clean, thin dish towel. Wrap up the steamed rice in the dish towel, twist, then SQUEEZE all the excess moisture out! *This is critical to getting all of the moisture out, so your pizza crust is nice and dry!
5. In a large bowl, mix the cauliflower,  egg,  yogurt, and spices.
6. Press the dough out onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Keep the dough about 1/3″ thick, and make the edges a little higher, to resemble a crust.
7. Bake for 35-40 minutes at 400 degrees, until golden brown.
8. Top with sauce, cheese, tomatoes, basil and chicken. Place pizza in oven at 400 degrees and bake for an additional 5-10 minutes, until the cheese is melted and bubbly. Slice and enjoy!

Pulsing the cauliflower.

The steamed cauliflower after twisting it in a dish towel to drain all of the excess moisture.

Mixing it all together to form the “dough.”

The pizza crust prior to baking it.

While we were waiting for dinner to be ready, we enjoyed some wonderful wine that we bought in the Anderson Valley of Northern California, last February.

I just love this wine from Toulouse Winery!

We also munched on some candied Pecans that my Foodie Pen Pal sent! They were SO good, that they were addicting! We kept eating the pecans until there weren’t any left!

Sugar Toasted Pecans…SO good!

After dinner and great conversation, we caught up on “So You Think You Can Dance” (finally watching the Finale) and started “Glee!” I just love that Kate Hudson is on the show this season! I can’t wait to finish the episode tonight!

This morning, Keenan woke up bright and early at 7:00 a.m. He brought a few of his books to our bed, so we read Llama Llama stories and cuddled as a family. For breakfast, my husband made almond flour pancakes (trying a new recipe) that were tasty, but a little dry. We need to add either a banana or more liquid next time. Sorry, I was totally absorbed in our family time this morning, that I forgot to take a picture of our pancakes!

Dancing with Daddy after breakfast this morning!

After breakfast, we headed to the Farmer’s Market and got vegetables for the week and then ran a few errands. Keenan was so tired that when he was eating his snack (Trader Joe’s Fruit leather) while we were driving, he was falling a sleep!

A little bit ago, I enjoyed a berry smoothie of frozen berries, yogurt and a scoop of protein powder, as my late lunch/snack. Here is the recipe:

So delicious!

Berry Protein Smoothie: (serves 1)

Ingredients:

– 1 cup frozen berries

– 1 scoop of vanilla protein powder

– 1/2 cup Greek yogurt

Directions:

1. Blend all ingredients together in a blender and enjoy!

Note: You might need a spoon, because it will be pretty thick! I think I will also add some faxseed and chia seeds next time!

After Keenan wakes up, we are heading to Costco! Tonight, my husband and I are going to enjoy another date night after Keenan goes to bed. For dinner, we are thinking of grilling some corn, tomatoes and country style pork ribs. We might also try Carolyn’s idea of grilled peaches wrapped in prosciutto for an appetizer! Also, I didn’t have a chance to make the peach cobbler last night, so I’m going to make it this afternoon. I’ll let you know how it turns out!

Questions: How did you spend your Saturday? What are you having for dinner tonight? Do you tend to spend more time cooking on the weekends then during the week? I definitely do! I usually try new recipes on the weekend.

 

Organizing your life August 21, 2012

Have you ever been on an organizing or cleaning kick where you don’t feel your life is settled until you re-organize/purge things in your house? For some reason, I have been on an organizing streak lately, specifically to make room for Keenan’s new things, i.e. his IKEA table and free up additional space in our house. I don’t feel I can function at my best, until I get everything organized (I know my husband would roll his eyes, but it’s true!). As Keenan is getting older, it seems we have less “liveable” space, so I want to make use of the room we have, without it feeling cluttered. We have lived in our house for almost 5 years and some of our closets haven’t been touched since the day we moved in, so they are definitely due for some re-organization!

This morning, after breakfast (having our “usual”, of course), Keenan and I played with Play Doh at his new table and then we headed upstairs to organize. I sorted through all of his toys and put the ones he doesn’t play with anymore in a box to store in his closet. It was funny, as soon as I was putting the toys away, he immediately “needed” to play with them (even his old teething toys from when he was a baby)! He was such a goofball today; he wanted to “hangout” in his crib with several of his books, toys and critters, while I was sorting/organizing his things (I wish I had a picture of it all)!

Making ice cream cones!

Anyhow, I’m relieved, because my mission for today was accomplished. I finished organizing his room by lunch time and now, I only have our guest room closet to do! I feel somewhat better now that Keenan’s room is complete. Now, we just have to convince my husband’s parents to store the rocking chair and lamp (what we used when Keenan was a baby) in their storage container, until we need it again when we have a second child! I wish we had the extra space to store everything, but it is amazing how much stuff you to start accumulate when you have kids! For those of you who are parents, how do you manage to store everything (especially if you plan to have multiple children) and/or keep things organized?

“Hiding” in his old toy box, before folding it and putting it away!

For lunch, Keenan requested his favorite (once again), a peanut butter and honey sandwich, but this time, I made it with my mom’s leftover (from yesterday’s picnic) beer bread and blueberry honey from my mother-in-law. He enjoyed his sandwich so much that it was everywhere! I had a piece of leftover fried chicken (I figure my last piece of fried goodness for a LONG time!), a small piece of torta and carrots. It hit the spot! There is something really satisfying about eating a drumstick.

Making a peanut butter mess (even in his hair)!

My lunch, YUM!

After Keenan’s nap, we head to CrossFit ( I wonder what today’s WOD includes) and then home for dinner to make Cauliflower Rice, such a good dish! I am making it Mediterranean style with chicken, sun dried tomatoes, kalamata olives, artichoke hearts and an onion with feta cheese. Look for the recipe tomorrow! Have a great afternoon!

 

My First Foodie Pen Pal and Weekend Recap October 1, 2012

I’m excited about today, because it is my first Foodie Pen Pal Reveal Day!

FPP post Foodie Penpals

A few weeks ago, I received my first Foodie Pen Pal box from Claire, in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. She sent goodies from her local co-op grocery store, Weaver Street Market. It is located in Carrboro, a small town right in the middle of North Carolina’s Research Triangle Park. From what Claire mentioned, Weaver Street Market isn’t just a market, it has a wonderful bakery, morning hot breakfast bar and a restaurant. It definitely is a one-stop shop!

On to the goodies that were in my box: “Everything” hamburger buns, YAWP bar, sugar toasted pecans, peach, valencia orange and apricot jam, along with Burt’s Beeswax chapstick and lotion, all local from North Carolina!

My goodies that I received!

“Everything” hamburger buns: These looked SO good, but unfortunately, they didn’t stay fresh and had some mold on them. I wished I could have tried them, because they looked delicious (minus the mold) and had so many wonderful things in the ingredients, i.e. seeds, nuts and different flours!

YAWP Bar: This was good, very crunchy, like granola. I liked that it was all natural and only contained almonds, dates, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, cinnamon and salt. It was loaded with protein, so it made for a nice pre-workout snack!

Sugar Toasted Pecans: I’m a sucker for any sugar-coated or glazed nuts, so these were AMAZING! My husband and I munched on them while we were cooking dinner for one of our “at home date nights!” I could have eaten the entire bag myself!

The pecans were so good, that they were addicting!

Valencia orange, Apricot and Peach Jam: This was good and a perfect topping for almond flour pancakes! I’m not much of a jam person, but this was really tasty, not overly sweet. Keenan and my husband really enjoyed this and practically put it on everything! 🙂

Burt’s Beeswax: I never knew Burt’s Beeswax was from North Carolina! I have always loved their lip products, so it was nice to have another chapstick. This was the first time that I tried their hand lotion and it was really nice, too! I will definitely be buying their lotion again!

It was a lot of fun receiving my box and trying all of these new things, in addition to sending a box to someone else (you can check out what I sent here!). I can’t wait to do it again this month! If you are interested in joining the Foodie Pen Pal program, find out how to join here.

Since this is already getting to be a long post, I’ll try and keep our weekend recap short.

On Friday night, we we enjoyed our “at home date night,” making pizza with an almond flour flaxseed crust topped with grilled peaches, prosciutto, spinach and goat cheese. The crust was SOOOOO good! It was very flavorful and crispy like a regular pizza crust. It certainly was a pizza that you could eat with your hands (unlike the cauliflower pizza we made a couple of weeks ago). This will definitely be one of our “regulars!” As you can see from the picture below, our pizza looked amazing, but as my husband was taking it out of the oven, the parchment paper split in half (yes, it wasn’t on a pizza stone or cookie sheet) and the pizza went crashing to the floor. My husband didn’t want to take out the whole pizza stone, he thought he could just pull it out from the parchment paper. Next time, we need to get a pizza mat! Anyhow, aside from our pizza looking like slop on a crust (which is why I didn’t take a picture of the finished product), it was wonderfully delicious! I wish I could have shown you what it looked like before we took it out of the oven!

Our beautiful pizza before it went into the oven!

On Saturday, we went to our farmer’s market to stock-up on fresh produce for the week, bought Keenan some red converse that were on sale at Kohl’s and headed to the grocery store to get our groceries for the week. After lunch, my friend and I got pedicures and coffee, which was SO needed! The guys stayed home to clean the oven door from my husbands mishap, while Keenan napped. That night, we went to a gymnastics class sponsored by our gym and had a blast! It was the first time I have done a round-off back handspring since high school! I was SO close to getting my standing back tuck again, but my body was  freezing up. The next time I go, I should be able to get it again. I can’t wait! Oh, for dinner, we grilled some prosciutto wrapped zucchini (the first time we tried it) and they were really good! Since we had so much zucchini, we spiced up the rest with Costco’s all-purpose garlic no-salt seasoning, pepper, a pinch of salt and olive oil and grilled them to use for lunches!

Yummy!

SOOOO good!

Yesterday, we had a lazy morning; I made pumpkin muffins with almond flour and my husband made some scrambled eggs. The muffins were so good, that we all ate two! I am going to double the recipe next time, so I can freeze the rest for quick mornings. In the afternoon, we visited some friends, who live in the bay area, who are expecting their first child later this month. We had nice visit. Keenan was terribly shy at first, then completely warmed-up and was saying “hi” to the baby and asking when it was ready to come out and play…too cute! For dinner, we went to this wonderful Puerto Rican restaurant called, Sol Food, in San Rafael. I had the Pollo al Horno, baked chicken marinated with oregano and garlic served with black beans, rice, salad and fried plantains. It was SO delicious, my mouth is watering just thinking about it! Keenan certainly enjoyed it too, because he inhaled his black beans, my chicken and the plantains.

Today, we headed to Keenan’s music class after a quick breakfast. Keenan enjoyed the last of the pumpkin muffins and some strawberries, while I ate my “usual,” Fage Greek yogurt, strawberries, chia seeds, flaxseed and Kashi cereal, along with a latte. For lunch, I enjoyed my chicken that was leftover from last night with some grilled zucchini and a tomato over a bed of spinach drizzled with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar! It was delish! Since I was craving something sweet, I also enjoyed a pluot!

After Keenan’s nap, we are heading to CrossFit and then home for dinner. On the menu is either spicy eggplant with chicken and spinach or grilled chicken and eggplant over a bed of sauteed spinach. We need to use up our spinach and eggplant that I bought last week (both are kind of limp), and I am not quite sure how I want to prepare them. I’ll keep you posted. Also, look for the almond flour flaxseed pizza crust and pumpkin muffin recipes coming tomorrow!

Question: Any suggestions on how to cook my eggplant, spinach and chicken tonight? Since we got home late last night, I haven’t had time to put much thought into our dinner tonight and for some reason, I am just not coming up with good ideas. I want to try something different…

 

 
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