Monday, July 26, 2010

Manic Monday Munchies: Blueberry Breakfast Parfait

This week for Manic Monday Munchies, I decided to write about a really simple dish that is one of my almost-daily staples - my version of a healthy blueberry parfait!

The base is nonfat Greek yogurt, so while it's a great breakfast item, it can also be a snack or a dessert, and is especially refreshing in the summer! It's something that I also feel safe to continue eating when pregnant. Moreover, the yogurt adds a good quantity of protein-which I have found to be an important part to the start of my day. (The yogurt brand I use has 20g protein per serving.) It can also be a good way for vegetarians to get protein.

Jamie's Blueberry Breakfast Parfait
Layer the following ingredients in a glass dish or tall cup, then eat!
  • 1 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
  • 1/2 cup walnut halves
  • 1/2 cup organic blueberries
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
Some extra tips:
My favorite Greek yogurt is Fage, partly because it tastes so great and the texture is light and fluffy, but also because it has no artificial additives or preservatives, and the dairy farmers supplying Fage have pledged not to treat their cows with rBGH.

If you want to use smaller walnut pieces, then decrease the measuring cup size to end up with the same overall quantity of walnuts.

I like to use organic blueberries because (a) they taste better, and (b) when it comes to fruit that I eat skin-on, I think it's important that it's organic. I don't focus as much on eating organic bananas and oranges as I do berries, apples, etc. Also, while fresh blueberries taste great in this recipe, blueberries do freeze really well, and if you want an extra cold, refreshing, summer kick, you could always use frozen ones!


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Thankful Thursday: Let's Get Physical

Oooooo, a little bit of a risque image, right? Well, I thought it was appropriate for this edition of Thankful Thursday, which is about the physical.

I am thankful for this body God gave me, the home of my soul, temple of my spirit. I am thankful for the legs I have that can walk, run, and jump. Thankful for the eyes in my head that allow me to read and watch, and see all in the world that is so beautiful. I am thankful for the ears I have that allow me to hear, and to listen. Thankful for my lips I have to kiss my husband, and that will someday allow me to kiss my baby's head, and feel the soft fuzz of my baby's hair. I am thankful for the nose that will smell that sweet baby smell, and that allows me joy in the scent of gardenias, jasmine, the spring blossoms on my tangelo tree, and the warm pine and dirt scent of the mountains. I am thankful for the skin I have with which I can touch and be touched by loved ones, and that inexplicably gets goose bumps when I'm inspired or when I watch a hallmark commercial.

I'm thankful for my Wacky Wicketeer's sexy dimples, and his warm, bright eyes. Thankful for his strong arms that hold me close and comfort me. I'm thankful for his gentle hands and his heat-radiating body.

I'm thankful for the smell of clean sheets, the feel of a cool fan on a hot summer's day, and the taste of a tart popsicle.

Lisa Nichols has said: "No one else can dance your dance. No one else can sing your song. No one else can write your story. Who you are, what you do, begins right now."

I am thankful for me.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Manic Monday Munchies: Zucchini Bread

I had a couple of my favorite recipes come up in conversation recently, including one in which Cheryl over at asked me for the recipe. During this whole infertility, pregnancy, and miscarriage journey, food has become an important part of my journey. Not knowing the cause of my Wacky Wicketeer's sperm challenges, or our miscarriages, has led me to much research of what we should and shouldn't be eating that might be harming or helping our reproductive health. I have even gone so far as to shift my time away from work and spend more time cooking from scratch and packing the Wicketeer's lunches for him to take to work.

All that to explain why I am starting a new regular posting called Manic Monday Munchies! Sometimes it will be a recipe, and other times just a discussion about food.

We eat very little in the way of sweets, despite us each having a sweet tooth. This recipe for zucchini bread is one of the few I consider to be not only a side dish or breakfast item, but also a possible dessert, that I still make with regularity. My stepmom gave me this recipe, and I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

Shelley's Zucchini Bread
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 cups grated zucchini
  • ¼ tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup chopped nuts
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 3 cups sifted flour
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp soda
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp allspice
  • ½ tsp cloves
Mix all ingredients together until smooth using electric mixer. Bake in 2 greased loaf pans at 325 degrees for 1 hour. Let cool 10 minutes.

Makes 2 loaves.

A few notes:
  • Make sure to use a vegetable oil and a pan-greaser (butter or vegetable shortening) with zero trans-fats.
  • I have considered trying apple sauce in place of the vegetable oil in the recipe, but haven't done so yet. Let me know how it works out if you are brave enough to try it that way!
  • I have tried substituting about half the flour with whole wheat flour to increase the amount of fiber, but the result can really vary as far as texture and such. Again, let me know what your ratio and results are if you try this substitution.