Almond Pancake

I’m still [more or less] in the midst of unpacking everything, so cooking hasn’t been happening anywhere as often as I’d like. (That coupled with illness and an actual set schedule for the first time in 2 years takes some getting used to! I got spoiled with the whole mostly-not-mandatory-attendance thing.)

In my laziest moments, it’s invariably either my rice cooker or my crockpot that ends up coming to the rescue. Today, it’s my rice cooker. :] You may have seen this idea on lifehacker at some point in time. I’ve been meaning to expand on the whole rice cooker cake idea for a while now, so what better time to start than now? This is not in plural form because one giant pancake is probably more than enough. :O

(Chocolate Banana) Almond Pancake

Ingredients:
-Namaste Foods gluten-free pancake/waffle mix (it was on manager’s special for $2 at Kroger!)
-2 tbsp unsweetened applesauce
-2 eggs
-3 tbsp almond powder*
-1/2 cup vanilla soy milk
*obtained from an Asian market (ingredients: almond powder, almond oil, cornstarch, sugar)

Instructions:
1) Mix everything together until no longer lumpy.
2) Cook in rice cooker for ~45 minutes! (I set it to the “cake” function on mine.)
3) Top with desired toppings (honey, maple syrup, fresh fruit, etc.) and serve.

For the record, I used a chocolate bourbon sauce + sliced bananas to top mine. Those pretty much cancelled out any almond-ness I could’ve tasted, but you can still smell its essence! :]

…It’s pretty much a cake!

(Also linked up on this week’s Delicious Dish Tuesday! Button is on the sidebar! :)

kay why

I’m about 85% moved in! I’m saying this with a lot more gusto than I’m actually feeling because, as luck would have it, I managed to get sick over the weekend (sigh). What a great way to start my rotations, right? :'( I actually had to stop 1/3 of the way into my drive to park in a hospital lot, where I promptly passed out for 2 hours (…).

The weekend was pretty darn awesome though–aside from chilling with the cats, I got to go hang out with the dogs at the shelter for the first time in ages, and took a bunch of them out for runs/walks/jogs. I also gave Raisin and Char Char a rather thorough grooming session, because hot and humid summers are definitely not their best friend.

Raisin’s one of my favorites. :D Just look at that face!!!

Sheba was also pretty thrilled to see me. <3

I also stopped by the local coffee shop to give me spare key to my friend. In so doing, I happened upon a ginormous dandelion. o_o Excuse my short + stumpy fingers. I just wanted you to have a comparison for how big it was.

Church meal! <3

After church, I went over to a friend’s neighbor’s place to go swimming before heading over to his house for a cookout/BBQ. (He’s heading to CA to start med school.) We went out to the corn fields and picked a whole ton to bring back to shuck/cook up. I unfortunately forgot to take pictures of all the awesome food that was there, but I did get a couple shots of the pool noodle wars!

It’s adorable how tiny Mia is in comparison to her pool noodle. :P

My friend happens to grow a whole ton of different veggies/herbs to sell, so at around midnight, he handed me a plastic bag and asked if I wanted to go on a “midnight raid.”

F: What do you mean?
A: We’re going to the Garden of Eden! You can take whatever you want!
(Sorry if blaspheming. It was all in good fun.)

Hence, how I ended up with eggplant, some kind of super-spicy pepper (forgot what they called it :[ ), tomatoes, beets, and huge bunches of fresh basil, Thai basil + cilantro. I’ve never prepared beets before, but…what better time to start, right? :O

Here’s some of it! :D

Despite my being sick and somewhat starved-out state (forgot to keep food/water next to me in the car; poor life choices :[ ), I managed to drag everything up to the third floor without any help. (I tend to dislike asking for help if I know I’m capable of doing it on my own.) Everything has been put away and I now have a mattress to sleep on! :D

;_;

Fitness Fav on Friday | Inspiration

I can’t believe it’s nearing the end of July already. Where did all the time go?! This marks the last of this month’s Fitness Fridays.

This week’s theme is on where (or what) we draw our inspiration from.

My first two years of undergrad were frighteningly unhealthy, mostly because of my course load (let’s just say that I had enough units to graduate by the end of my second year) and the fact that I didn’t know any better. Granted, I’m sure it could’ve been worse. I ate healthily (usually), but in large quantities. (Alright, fine. This really hasn’t changed too much. ._.) I didn’t drink alcohol, but I didn’t exercise very often. My second year was the worst. I was slaving through organic chemistry and very heavily questioning my life choices. A typical day consisted of many, many cups of green tea, Nature Valley Oats n’ Honey granola bars throughout the day (I consumed over 500 that academic year. I am unfortunately not exaggerating.), and some sort of hopefully healthy-ish dinner. To this day, I can’t eat those granola bars anymore because it reminds me of ochem.

If you’ve ever happened upon the “fitness” section of my frighteningly long “About” page (forgive me; I love to write), you’d know that once upon a time, I made the glorious decision to change my major from Biological Sciences to Exercise Biology. It was easily one of the best decisions of my life, and those last two years of undergrad still remain as some of the best times of my life.

I absolutely fell in love with the major, and also had a little more freedom with my schedule, so before I knew it, on top of the Tahitian + hula dancing I was already doing, I was also taking kickboxing classes, abs/back conditioning, archery, tumbling, learning to lift weights, running…I tried it all and loved most of it (I really did try with long-distance running, but my apparent lack of type I muscle fibers just makes weightlifting so much more appealing). One of my most recent pipe dreams would be to be able to compete for WBFF, but given the amount of time and dedication it would take (coupled with the current road I’m taking), I don’t think it’d be a viable option. :[

I love the way lifting weights/exercise makes me feel, and it’s great to set state records and be awesome and all that. I will admit that I draw part of my inspiration from my dreams of badassery…but what matters more to me goes beyond that.

I want to lead by example. My hope is to go into family medicine (possibly sub-specializing in sports medicine) and to really be able to show my patients what I mean when I counsel them on incorporating exercise into their life, or tell them to start or maintain a healthier diet. I’d like to be able to give them concrete examples and tailor it to their individual needs. (I basically did this throughout the last two years, even though all my patients were fake.) I learn best by doing, so the past two years of medical school were really difficult for me. Matters were not helped by the fact that we were the guinea pig class to the new curriculum, but what matters is that we made it through. (I like to refer to our class as the “spirited survivors.”)

I’m always the first to admit that I am definitely not a genius (nowhere close :[ ). I got to where I am today because of my persistence and determination. I hope that continues to pull me forward, but for now, LEMME BASK IN THE GLORY OF NEVER HAVING TO TAKE THIS MONSTROSITY AGAIN. <3

I get to start my clinical rotations and start seeing real patients on Monday! Words cannot express how ecstatic I am right now. :]


This marks the last of Fitness Fav on Friday–go check out jvkom next week for a Feature Friday!

JVKom Chronicles
Also, starting next week, I’m really excited to announce that I’ve teamed up with several other ladies from Girls Gone Sporty for a Foodie Friday linkup! Each week will be a separate theme, so feel free to join in! :D More details will be up later on this/next week!

Mid Year Review | Start, Stop, Keep

July’s PDBA blog hop theme is a mid-year review on what’s been going on in our lives, whether it be from a personal, business, or poler’s viewpoint. I’m going with personal because my poling has become so sporadic. :[ Darn life for getting in the way. (I’m still devising a way to sneak my pole up 2 flights of stairs without anyone in my complex noticing it. ._.)

  • Start: being more proactive, studying every day, working out regularly
  • Stop: negative self-talk (I noticed how gifted I was at this during my 1.5-month long study hibernation; it’s horrible) + making excuses for myself/other people
  • Keep: on truckin’ (+ in touch with + maintain relationships with family/friends, volunteering, and venturing out of my comfort zone)!

There’s been a lot that’s happened over the past 6 months, although there’s really just one thing on my mind right now. Remember my 1.5-ish-month long study hibernation that pretty much sucked all the life and joy away from me?

I PASSED MY BOARDS!!!

I officially get to call myself a third-year medical student, which means I’m finally permitted to re-join the land of the living/interact with human beings again. I’m one step closer to finally becoming a physician, and I am absolutely overjoyed. <3 I can’t wait to start my rotations!

Here are highlights from the first half of this year!

January: Coping mechanism for the polar vortex

February: Raising money at the International Festival so PAX could bring more supplies/medications to the DR (see next month).

March: Volunteering in the Dominican Republic (we managed to raise >$5000 to buy supplies/meds to bring over!)

April: My unintentional half-move into the cat shelter that later became an official move

May: Snuck back to CA for a week to half-live at Twirly Girls and see my family/friends before disappearing into the catacombs forever

June: My life as a basement dweller

Recipe ReDux: Citrus Chia Pudding

A Spirited ReDux: From plain Jane vanilla extract to fancy-pants elderflower liqueur, we like to keep a little liquor in the kitchen. Show us how you like to cook, bake or mix-it-up with spirits, extracts and other alcohols. A splash of vodka makes summer sauces shine – and liqueurs brighten desserts: What’s your healthy recipe with spirit?

I’m about 1/3 of the way through with moving to a neighboring state right now, so all my kitchen utensils, ingredients, etc. are partially here and partially there. I’ve actually been surviving on fruit, smoothies, free lunches from orientation (+ leftovers from said orientation lunches), and protein bars for the past 1.5 weeks, because…not only am I in the middle of a move–I also happened to lose my wallet somewhere in the mess, so I have no credit cards/debit cards to speak of (they’re in transit, I hope)! Yayyy… My new location actually has my bank in the state! There’s only 1 branch (which is still an improvement from none), but it’s 5 hours away, so clearly, I’m not going there. Life has been interesting.

Before all of this happened, I had these grand aspirations to unearth the super awesome vanilla extract I obtained from my medical service trip to the Dominican Republic, but that’s…somewhere in the basement(?) at the moment. (Using the shaoxing cooking wine I managed to find at the local(!) Asian market was also a thought, but I’m not sure that counts as a liquor since it’s wine? …Can you tell that I don’t drink?)

Anyway, this is what I came up with yesterday night when I finally got back to location #1. This is more on the tart side of the spectrum, so feel free to sweeten with honey, agave nectar, maple syrup…whatever your choice of sweetener happens to be! :]

Citrus Chia Pudding

Ingredients:
-1/4 cup chia seeds
-2/3 cup orange juice
-1/2 tsp orange extract
-1/2 tsp pineapple extract
-fresh or frozen fruit, diced (optional; I used cherries + blueberries)

Instructions:
1) Pour chia seeds into a cup or bowl.
2) Stir together the orange juice, orange and pineapple extracts. Pour over chia seeds and stir well. Cover and refrigerate overnight (or at least wait for it to soak for ~30 minutes!).
3) Top with fruit and mix!


As the first and only recipe challenge founded by registered dietitians, The Recipe ReDux aims to inspire the food lover in every healthy eater and inspire the healthy eater in every food lover. Thank you for visiting. We hope you enjoy!

(Please note that this is a closed link-up for Recipe ReDux Contest entries only. Any links added to this collection for non-ReDux posts will be deleted.)

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