We’ve made it over the hump! Let’s celebrate, just ‘cuz, shall we?
I know that I often go through my week in an automated way, forgetting to acknowledge the little triumphs—the small things in life that make it so wonderful—-and I’m guessing you may feel the same way. So why not take a luxurious bubble bath, bake a fresh batch of cookies, pop a bottle of wine (or kombucha!), enjoy an ice cream cone (I’m on the hunt for this flavor!)…
In other words, do something TODAY that makes YOU smile.
Today I spent my first day interning at the USDA FNS, which oversees programs like Let’s Move! and The National School Lunch Program. So far I love my co-workers, and think that the next three months are going to be an energizing learning experience!
That said, I was a bit zonked after meeting dozens of friendly faces and digesting lots of new information.
My remedy: a refreshing, yet “indulgent” protein shake.
I’ve been loving my new container of Sunwarrior protein powder, but this afternoon I used another favorite, Tera’s Whey Bourbon Vanilla, and added cinnamon and xanthan gum to make it extra thick and creamy.
The little black straw you see there is typically plopped into all of my beverages, but after taking a few sips of my shake, I realized that a spoon would be a more efficient way to get the goodness into my belly.
Okay, enough about protein shakes (for a little while, that is, check out the recipe at the end of this post!). Time to move along to What I Ate Wednesday! Hosted by the lovely Jenn, at Peas and Crayons. <3
Let’s talk about the food that shook my world last night.
I stepped out of my ordinary.
I stepped out of my comfort zone.
I stepped out…And went somewhere I’ve never gone.
That somewhere was…the deep fryer. (!)
Yep, your eyes are seeing what you think they’re seeing. That’s an innocent heart-healthy slice of avocado that’s been dipped in egg white and breadcrumbs and then plunged into a bubbling bath of canola oil (which, by the way, is also heart healthy).
It. Was. Amazing.
And the experience was all the more fun because I had my brother and his friend, Brad, in the kitchen helping me out!
I never slice an avocado without stealing a few pieces.
And apparently they never slice an avocado without…playing with it?? :-p
The avocado-breading process went like this:
1) flour (you can use a gluten free variety)
2) egg whites
3) panko breadcrumbs (again, a GF variety works!).
Then the fun began!
Let’s take a look at the creamy, crunchy, melt-in-you-mouth goodness again, shall we?
We piled the avocado slices on a plate for everyone to enjoy. Next we added salt.
Then some pepper…
Whoops! An entire container of pepper = SPICY avocado fries! Still quite tasty though.
I rounded out my meal with Chicken Meatloaf Muffins, which were inspired by yet another Jamie Eason recipe.
Plus a very necessary ketchup drizzle…because ketchup makes everything taste better.
My post-dinner treat was another take on the Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake featured in my last post.
**Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake**
1/2 c. pumpkin
1/2 c. lowfat cottage cheese
1 t. pumpkin pie spice mix (or a mixture or cinnamon, cloves and ginger)
1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
1 scoop vanilla protein powder
1-2 packets stevia (my favorite is Nu Naturals)
1 handful ice cubes
1. Mix everything in a blender until well combined.
Nutrition information: calories: +/~300, protein: 30 g
I was so full from this shake, I skipped my whipped cottage cheese + peanut butter night cap.
That NEVER happens!
Here’s the thing though, it’s not such a bad thing to mix up the routine. In fact, I think it’s healthy to push ourselves outside our comfort ruts from time to time; whether it’s eating oats instead of eggs for breakfast, taking a new route to work, or trying out a new class at the gym. If we choose to avoid new experiences out of fear, we’re also choosing to ignore opportunities to grow. Our comfort foods and routines aren’t going anywhere; we can always return to them if we wish. But we only have a limited time in this life, so why not seize the day?
I’m a creature of habit. When I find something I love, I love it GOOD. However sometimes that love turns into a habit that I’m afraid to deviate from.
Next time I may bake those avocado fries. And tomorrow I’ll likely return to my tried and true cottage cheese. But in no way do I regret my choice to try out a new cooking technique simply because I knew it would yield something delightfully delicious.
Cheers to living life loud. Stepping outside comfort zones. Taking risks. And enjoying the ride.
Love you all! xoxo
Questions for you:
What’s your favorite fried food? (C’mon, you know frying makes everything taste better!)
Do you find that you tend to fall into ruts? Do you actively try to push yourself out of them?
What are your thoughts about me posting nutrition information on recipes? Yay or nay?