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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



easter sunday

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I realize that Easter was actually on the 20th of April, but since I write everything so far into the future (yes, I really am that kind of type A), most of the posts that I write in real-time end up getting posted much later. Bear with me! :O Sometimes, I even manage to make an edit of in my posts of something that’s actually current (e.g. happened in the last day or two). It’s rare, but it happens. This was the weekend after the last of my classes finally ended (hooray hooray!), so I volunteered to help my friend prepare food/help out with whatever she might need. F: Is there anything I should bring? What can I help with? E: Yes! Thank you so much for offering! Can you be here at 6 tomorrow? A: …in the morning? F: (thinking the exact same thought and thoroughly regretting having said anything) Due to a late study night/morning and the misplacement of my house keys, I ended up getting there at 7 and instead of helping with the cooking (Heidi had it well covered; she is magical in the kitchen) and helped with vacuuming, setting up all the tables, chairs, centerpieces and being the accompanist. Our breakfast included buckwheat or whole wheat pancakes, oatmeal banana waffles, a tofu scramble with veggies, walnut oat patties and hash browns. Toppings for the pancakes/waffles included coconut cream, diced strawberries/kiwi/cantaloupe, sliced bananas + apples, blueberry syrup and maple syrup. :]

The food was amazingly delicious and I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I ate 3 more plates of food even after I was already at the point of being uncomfortably stuffed. It was too good to pass up. :/

I thought all this looked pretty spiffy! :]

After studying on campus for several hours, I had a light dinner with Linda before heading to Sean/Isaac’s to study a little more before our weekly gathering for Game of Thrones.

My favorite roll at Fujiyama is the Paradise roll (It’s spicy salmon and avocado topped with more salmon.  <3)

Twas a good weekend. :D Probably one of the most relaxing ones I’m gonna have in a very long time.

And now…for a rather abrupt change in topics (I gotta work on my transitions!), I’m joining in on my first-ever fitness challenge that’s being hosted by Jen (a fellow GGSA), Samantha, Carley, and Anna. It’s basically to get in some kind of movement for at least 20 minutes for every day of May, which should be completely doable, and is something I very much need because I’ve been feeling guilty for even taking a break to eat these days because it detracts from my studying time. I just keep a bag of food next to me and eat while I study. Sad, but true.

JVKom Chronicles

Karen (also a fellow GGSA :) over at Kama Fitness is also doing a challenge, so I figured I’d just stack the two. The more the merrier!  You can find out more information by clicking the link below!

Kama Fitness

Choplets with Hoisin or Teriyaki Sauce

My apologies in advance because you’re gonna be seeing this picture twice. :O This is mostly because on their own, choplets really don’t look all that appetizing, so they’ve been drizzled with “hoisin” dressing and paired with yet another variation of pineapple fried rice. Don’t hate. Choplet recipe was from Heidi (as most of my recipes are these days! :O!!) and the sauce recipes were from Chloe’s Kitchen.

These are good as a meat substitute for stir-fry, sandwiches, stews, etc. :]


(Pictured on the right with vegan hoisin sauce!)

-2 1/2 cups gluten
-1 1/2 tbsp onion powder
-1 tsp salt
-2 tbsp nutritional yeast
-2 cups water
-2 celery stalks, diced
-1 onion, diced
-2 tsp salt
-1/2 tsp ginger
-1 tsp garlic
-1/4 cup soy sauce
-2 tbsp molasses
-6 cups water

1) (Broth) Saute the celery + onion, then add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil.
2) (Dough) Sift dry ingredients together, then add in the water.
3) Mix together quickly to avoid dry clumps (it clumps together very quickly!). Knead dough for a minute to make it tougher and more elastic.
4) Form into a log and slice “rounds” off the log. Place them into the boiling broth.
5) Cover and reduce broth to simmer. Cook for 1 hour. (They will look like ginormous chicken pieces, but don’t worry, they’ll shrink back down when they’ve cooled down!)
6) Drain and serve in a stir-fry, stew, sandwich, etc.

Hoisin Sauce
-4 tbsp soy sauce
-2 tbsp peanut butter
-1 tbsp sugar or honey
-2 tsp vinegar
-2 tsp sesame oil or 1 tbsp tahini
-hot +/or black pepper, to taste

Teriyaki Sauce
-3/4 cup water
-3 tbsp soy sauce
-1/2 tsp fresh ginger, grated
-1 clove garlic, minced
-2 tbsp brown sugar or maple syrup
-1 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot

Recipe ReDux: Walnut Oat Patties

Less than 2 weeks ago, I got to partake in a cooking class sponsored by Greenbrier Better Living Center & Thrift Store (also known as the thrift shop my church runs). The goal was to teach the community that healthy foods could indeed be delicious, and didn’t necessarily have to be extremely complicated/expensive to make. It’s currently being taught by Heidi, one of the best cooks at my church.* She taught us how to make 17 different recipes within 2.5 hours. This included giving us samples of all of them. And raffles. :O D-damn. I believe the next class is going to be covering healthy/healthier desserts! :]

*This is saying a lot, because everything, and I mean everything, I have consumed there thus far [1.5 years and counting] has been delicious. :O She has 6 children (ages 1-11) and I’m jealous of what they get to eat each day…but it’s cool, because that’s what my Saturdays are for. I usually reserve Saturday as my “cheat day” and go back for thirds or fourths; if anyone could convert me into eating a vegetarian/vegan diet, they’d have the highest success rate.

In any case, this is my very first contribution to the Recipe ReDux group! I hope it goes well because I’m not going to be around until about a week after this to see whether or not I posted it correctly. (Hooray for the “schedule post” option!)

The theme for March 2014 is…

A Play on Patties : While St. Patty’s Day will be over by the time The Recipe ReDux rolls around this month, we’re celebrating the ‘patty’ all month long. We’ve seen images of stacked patties go crazy on food photo sharing sites like; so stack ‘em up! Think healthy tuna burgers, potato patties, or veggie stacks.

The awesome thing about this recipe is that it’s so darn versatile. If you want to add a spicy kick to it, chop up a jalapeno and throw it in. Mix up the spices and you have a whole different patty to work with. You could also top it with all kinds of different sauces. :] Hope you enjoy!

Walnut Oat Patties

-2 cups water + 1 3/4 cups water
-1 cup walnuts
-1/4 cup soy sauce, tamari or Bragg’s Aminos
-1/4 cup nutritional yeast
-1 tbsp flax seed
-1 tbsp garlic powder
-1 tbsp basil
-1 tbsp oregano
-1 tsp coriander
-1 tsp liquid smoke (hickory)
-black pepper or hot pepper (optional)
-4 cups oats

1) Blend 2 cups of water + the next 10 ingredients (basically everything except the oats). The mixture doesn’t have to be smooth.
2) Pour blender contents into saucepan and use remaining 2 cups of water to rinse the rest of the blender contents into the saucepan.
3) Bring mixture to a boil. Stir occasionally since nuts scorch easily.
4) Add oats. Stir, then remove from heat.
5) Let cool. Preheat oven to 350.
6) Use a wide-mouth canning ring to fill/shape patties on a greased baking sheet.
7) Bake for 20 minutes on each side.

These seem to taste best when they’re made a day in advance and then reheated the following day before serving. The flavors mellow out and it’s delicious. :D

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.)

Garlic Naan (+ Pizza Dough!)

This is another recipe I learned from my church! The pizza dough recipe is from page 250 of Chloe’s Kitchen and the Garlic Naan recipe is from pages 174-175.

Garlic Naan

-8 garlic cloves, minced
-1-1 1/2 lb. pizza dough*
-flour for rolling
-2-3 tbsp Earth Balance, melted, for brushing

1) Preheat the oven to broil.
2) Knead garlic into the dough until evenly distributed.
3) Divide dough into 6-8 equal pieces and roll each piece into a ball.
4) Roll out on a lightly floured surface until ~8-in. thick.
5) Place on broiler pan or baking sheet + brush the top with melted margarine. Broil for 2 minutes, then flip using tongs and broil for another 1-1 1/2 minutes (or until puffed + lightly browned in spots).

*Pizza Dough
(This makes ~1.5 pounds!)

-1 1/4 oz. package active dry yeast (2 1/4 tsp)
-1 cup warm water, 110 degrees
-1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour + 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
-1 tbsp EVOO, + extra for brushing
-1 tsp salt
-1 tbsp sugar or maple syrup

1) In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until bubbles form (~10 minutes).
2) In a large bowl, combine flour, oil, salt, sugar + yeast mixture. Using lightly floured hands, mix until a stiff dough has formed. If dough is too sticky, sprinkle extra flour (~1 tsp at a time) as needed.
3) Place dough in large well-oiled bowl + rotate the ball of dough so it’s completely covered w/ oil. (This will prevent dough from sticking to the bowl as it rises.) Cover with a dry kitchen towel and place in a warm area until it’s doubled in volume (1-1 1/2 hours).
4) Place dough on lightly floured surface and shape into a disc. Knead for 5 minutes using the steering wheel technique** and use dough immediately, or cover tightly in plastic wrap + refrigerate or freeze for later use. Thaw to room temperature before using.

**(Steering Wheel Technique)
1) Shape dough in a disc + place 1 hand at 12 o’ clock (top of disc).
2) Fold dough in half toward 6 o’ clock. With the heel of your hand, press dough from 6-12 o’ clock. Turn dough a quarter of a turn.
3) Repeat process for 5 minutes.