Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Thinking Spring?

Another night of subzero temperatures and a day in single digits....brrrrrr.  Kinda makes everyone a little bit on edge. I generally like winter in Ohio. I like the snow...playing in it and even shoveling it. I'm not afraid to drive in snow. In fact, I find it weirdly peaceful at times. And admit it, snow is beautiful! It feels like we've had a nice amount of sunny days mixed in. But this cold! Nope, that's where I draw the line. I'm supposed to have snowboarding lessons tonight. I'll freeze solid in 20 minutes. Can I get some 25 degree weather up in here?

So I started my morning with some delicious overnight oats. Have you jumped on this bandwagon yet? I love hot oatmeal. This whole "no cooking" thing made me a little wary. I wouldn't say that I'm hooked...but this recipe was a winner.
I've always loved peanut butter and banana together. Here's the recipe, I hope you give it a try.

First you'll need some containers with tight fitting lids that hold at least a cup and a half. If you know anything at all about me, you know I have jars upon jars. I chose some wide mouth salsa jars that I saved instead of using canning jars. They were perfect.

Now, there are many ways to modify this recipe to suit your own tastes. You can make it vegan or use regular oatmeal instead of gluten free. Do what you like!

Also...you can make just one jar or set up a little assembly line and make a week's worth!

In your container add:
1/2 C milk - I used almond/coconut blend
1/2 C old fashioned oatmeal - I used gluten free
1Tbl honey or maple syrup
Put on your lid, give it a good shake, refrigerate overnight.

In the morning add:
1 sliced banana
2Tbl peanut butter - I use organic, unsweetened
2Tbl chopped pecans
1Tbl chocolate chips

Overnight oats can be eaten hot or cold. I prefer to heat mine up first and then add the goodies. I also find that I need just a little more milk in the pan while heating.

That's it! Easy peasy! And less work that cooking in the morning (even with heating them up on the stove). And they were delicious and filling!

Another recipe I made for the first time this weekend was guacamole deviled eggs. I have NEVER been a fan of deviled eggs. As a child I remember learning how to make them with my mom but I've always had an aversion to mustard and mayo mixed together. It reminds me of my distaste for potato salad...a childhood trauma...a story for another time! But I really love guacamole...and I like hardboiled eggs in recipes or on my salad...so TRY NEW THINGS MONICA!!

Yep. Don't be afraid. Just try.
Anyway, look how fantastic these are!
First start with hardboiled eggs. That's a loaded statement isn't it?! Ha! There are a few tips I can give for making it a little bit easier. If your eggs are older, they'll peel better. And add about 1/4C of baking soda to your pan of cold water before you add your eggs...also helps with the peeling.

So I boiled 8 eggs. Peeled them. Sliced them in half and separated the yolks into a medium bowl. Using a fork break up the yolks until crumbly.
To this add:
1 mashed, ripe avocado
juice of half a lime
2 strips of bacon, fried crisp and crumbled
2 Tbl finely minced red onion
pinch of salt
1/4 tsp garlic powder

Mix well and spoon back into your egg white halves. I portioned these into small containers for snacking this week along with my food prep meals and fruit.

Friends at work always comment on what I bring to eat and how it looks so delicious...but I still see them ordering out every day. First of all, that is WAY out of my budget. I have a part time job and sell bakery and needlecrafts on the side to make ends meet. Secondly, I like to know what I'm eating! For a couple hours each week I plan, shop, cook and prepare. The finished product is healthy, filling breakfasts, fresh fruit every day, nutrient filled/lower calorie lunches and delicious snacks that aren't sugary and processed!
If any of you have questions about my cooking or meal prep, ASK! I'm happy to share any helpful tips or recipes. I use pint canning jars for cut fruit, berries, grapes, apples. Grab it and go = 16oz of fruit.
This week's lunches were baked chicken and salmon, sweet potatoes, frozen California blend veggies and quinoa. I have the deviled eggs for snacks. I also always have plain organic yogurt and homemade granola.
Healthy starts with your attitude. Small changes. Inside and out.

I love you guys for reading! Thanks <3
Make it a great week!