Archive for December 2011

The Week recaps a year: 11 for 2011

During the 365 days of 2011, I ran 746 miles, ate 675,000 calories, sent 1 5-year-old off to kindergarten, took the first 2 classes in my nutrition graduate program, and posted 83 times on Eating The Week. To keep with the numerical theme on this last day of the year, I thought I’d recap the 11 most popular ETW posts of 2011.

Three theme weeks were among the most-read ETW posts, although I admit that I’m not sure what the common thread is:

11. The avocado affair, May 2011

10. The Missing Week: potassium, Apr 2011

9. Homemade nut butters, June 2011

Almond butter

You’ve all been kind to humor my rambling about running – the posts where I recapped the half marathons I ran this year got a lot of views:

8. Cox Providence half marathon, May 2011

7. Amica Newport half marathon, Oct 2011

Team Flail after Providence half marathon

After joining the Recipe Redux mid-year, I’ve had a great time with the monthly recipe challenges and meeting a fun community of food-minded dietitians. ETW readers seem to have had a great time reading our posts, judging from the traffic on four of my recipes for the Redux:

6. Coconut chia-seed popsicles, Aug 2011

5. Pumpkin-yogurt dip for waffle sticks, Oct 2011

4. Grilled couscous-stuffed portobello mushrooms, June 2011

3. Sparkling melon fizz, July 2011

Pumpkin yogurt dip from October Recipe Redux

Last but not least, the Cooking Light Superfast tests. I took a week’s worth of Super fast recipes (twice) and tried them out for speed and tastiness. I have a feeling that my appearance on Cooking Light’s site and in their magazine as a Superfast Fan of the Month helped make these posts popular:

2. Round one, Mar 2011

1. Round two, May 2011

Melon prosciutto salad from Cooking Light

Not bad for the first year of the blog, huh? Here’s to another fun year of week-size morsels of food and nutrition bloggery in 2012!

Happy Holidays!

We’re nestled into my parents’ house in Austin at the moment, trying to contain a certain 5-year-old’s DEFCON 1 level Santa excitement. Before we sit down for dinner, I wanted to wish you all happy holidays from me (present), my husband Tim (candy cane) and Miles (tree)!

 

Texas Week II: Treats from the Lonestar state

Yesterday, the UPS elf (my neighbor Teddy, who drives the Big Brown Truck in our town) delivered a box full of Lonestar State goodies, the Austin-to-Boston leg of a holiday blogger gift swap between me & Eli of Grubbus. And after opening up the box, I’m feeling very thankful to have taken part in the swap organized by the Austin Food Blogger Alliance and the Boston Food Bloggers, and grateful to have been paired with an awesome blogger like Eli.

I use “awesome” to signify “I’m in awe of several things,” not least of which is Eli’s write-up of the swap. I was feeling pretty full of myself for remembering that he has two kids & relatives in Michigan (both my parents are native Michiganders), but he went way beyond & learned a lot about me, even thinking through how to pick gifts from Carnivore Capital, USA to give to a nascent vegetarian.

Those gifts, you ask? Head past the jump & we’ll start with the stylish waitress apron handmade by Eli’s wife, Tracy.

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Recipe Redux: Putting the P(ea) in Potluck

My recipe for this month’s Recipe Redux goes something like this: mix 2 client deadlines, several end-of-semester finals, sprinkle with a new job, and bake for the week leading up to the holidays & travel. Result? I’ve got nothing for this  month’s theme: putting the p(ea) in potluck. Our challenge was to make a party-friendly recipe that uses legumes, and I fully intended to do something spicy and sweet with mung beans (which I met during a recent Hello Stranger post).

But then a whole lot of workschoolmoreworkparenthoodholidays intervened, and I haven’t yet worked through a mung-bean dip recipe. My fellow Reduxers, however, remain on their game and have a slew of bean-y recipes to brighten any holiday party. I hope you’ll check them out (links below) and I’ll be back in full Redux form next month after a highly anticipated winter break between semesters!


The Missing Week: Vegetables and the chocolate Trojan Horse

Have you heard me extol vegetables’ virtues previously – colon-friendly fiber, blood-pressure-loving potassium – but haven’t yet felt compelled to consistently eat your daily recommended servings? Maybe you’re suffering from Vegetable Nutrition News Fatigue (symptoms include rolling eyes and sighing after repeated exposure to vegetable-related health-benefit messages). If that’s the case, then I clearly need to resort to the heavy artillery: chocolate.

What’s that, you say? Chocolate.

Do I have your attention now? Good, because something else yanked my attention back to the topic of produce-heavy diets: a British study found not eating enough fruits and vegetables is the 2nd greatest modifiable risk for developing cancer in men, and the 5th greatest modifiable risk in women (approximately 40% of overall cancer risk is due to modifiable/lifestyle factors). This news isn’t entirely new, since research has previously linked a lack of dietary produce with risk of many cancers. But the fact that it is second only to tobacco among modifiable risk factors in men startled me, and I realized it was time to step up the vegetable evangelism.

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Texas week, y’all: ATX-BOS holiday blogger swap

Although I’m a transplant to the Boston area, this place is definitely my home now. I have a dog named after a Red Sox announcer, I gave birth to our son at Beth Israel Deaconess, and I know what people mean when they ask for a carriage at the grocery store. When Boston Food Bloggers called for members interested in a holiday gift swap with our Austin, TX brethren, I jumped in but not only because I’m proud of my adopted home. As it turns out, I also have ties to the Lonestar State’s official home of Keeping It Weird, through my parents who moved to Austin over a decade ago.

I may have sounded a little excited explaining all this to Eli of Grubbus (omgmyparentsliveinAustinandit’ssohotinsummerheyyouhavefamilyinMichiganmetoo!). But that didn’t seem to deter my swap partner, so I got to work finding some local items and wrapping them up in Boston-appropriate decorations.

Want to see what I enclosed in maps of North Reading (where we live), the Boston marathon course, Paul Revere’s historical run, and the MBTA subway system? Follow past the jump.

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No-bowl breakfast

A bowl full of breakfast is one of the easiest things ever. Throw in some cereal and milk, grab a spoon, and you’re done. Maybe toss some oats and add-ins into the bowl, microwave quickly, and there’s your piping hot meal with very little effort.

Bowl-Based Breakfast Efficiency Experts, LLC

That ease can be alluring, especially if it’s, oh I don’t know, the last two weeks of the semester in the same month as a bunch of holiday stuff and several client deadlines coupled with your spouse’s business travel and multiple early-release days from kindergarten. Before you know it, you look up from the 187th bowl of breakfast and realize… you’re in a rut.

And by you, I mean me. Faced with another (albeit tasty) bowl of almond-topped Ezekiel cereal recently, I found myself looking for someone to throw me a rope ladder down into the breakfast bowl rut. Thankfully, a smoothie, a sandwich, some tangy bread, and several other no-bowl breakfast recipes came to my rescue. (more after the jump)

Barbecue egg & veggie breakfast sandwich

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Hello, Stranger: Someone’s not going to be invited back

Sometimes, your friends have a new, awesome Friend that you haven’t met yet. This Friend is talked up as the funniest/daringest/best-looking/most-traveled person around, and your friends insist you just have to meet them. So one thing leads to another and a dinner party or kickball game or whatever the kids do these days is arranged, and you finally meet The Friend. But after small talk falls flat, or maybe The Friend rudely snatched the last Pretty Things brew from the fridge, or maybe they just aren’t as good-looking as promised, you’re left wondering what do they see in this Friend?  Well, it turns out that I met one of those friends in this fourth installment of Hello, Stranger.

Who failed to meet expectations in this latest round of experimentation with foods I’ve never eaten or prepared myself?

Hemp milk. That’s right – despite all the praise heaped on help milk by other nutrition nerds I know, this just didn’t cut it for me.

Now, I like non-cow milks, don’t get me wrong. And I’m all for foods can boast about their omega fatty acid profiles. So I gave hemp milk several chances to win me over: I bought unsweetened, plain (sweetened), and vanilla, and tried each with my regular cereal, in oatmeal, in chia seed pudding, and straight from the glass. But in every incarnation, this stuff tasted like pressed facial powder (see: Cover Girl or similar), and I just couldn’t get past it. I might be tempted to give it one more go in a smoothie, like this chocolate banana one from The Naked Dish, but it would take a lot of convincing (and a big sale/coupon).

But thankfully, a few tastier foods were also invited to this meet & greet. Follow after the jump to strike up some small talk.

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