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Thursday, January 31, 2013

This Mortal Coil

Hey guys, I'll play a little catch-up tomorrow but tonight I just want to tell you how ridiiiiiiculous my life is... I went to bed feeling fine on Tuesday night but woke up in the middle of the night to an intense pain in my elbow, so I iced it and passed out. I woke up in a puddle of water (luckily I did NOT pee myself in my sleep) and with my elbow hot to the touch, red, still painful and swollen to twice its normal size. Sooooo I freaked out, assumed the worst (lupus, impending death, blood sepsis) because I am an obsessive-compulsive hypochondriac and called out of work (I ended up going in later in the day) to see an urgent care doctor. Anyway, she diagnosed bursitis, which is apparently from LEANING too much, which is...basically just hilarious and WYRD.
Now I'm taking an antibiotic (4 times a day, what fun) and an anti-inflammatory (twice a day.) HowEVER, I HATE taking medicine and distrust and just dislike it but I'm TAKING it because I'm paranoid and whatever. Because the medicines leech vitamins from my body I'm trying to eat foods that are both generally helpful and reintroduce what is being sapped: in particular, folic acid, all B vitamins, and good bacteria.
While I waited for the pharmacy to fill my prescriptions, I ate something not so healthy but had been craving for weeks:

(Pumpernickel bagel with tofu cream cheese. When I saw this photo small on my camera I was like, "When did I eat a Devil Dog???")
The bagel filled me up until lunch:

Collard greens, baked sweet potato, quinoa, hummus + balsamic vinegar from Whole Foods.
Also bought this GoodBelly juice to refill my lactobactillii and probiotic needs:

It's pretty tasty. I don't often get anything acai flavored so it makes me feel special. Or something.
G and I had tentative plans to go to a friend's reading after work (free wine!) but since I can't drink on this medication (aarrrrrgghhhhh), we got tea at Mud coffee.

 Well, he got (peach) tea. I got a chai latte with soy milk (fancy, right?) that gave me a SERIOUS caffeine/sugar buzz. Delicious, foamy, and warming. No flash.
Tonight, to get back some B vitamins, I ate this huge salad covered in nooch.

Chopped collard geens, adzuki beans, carrots, sweet potato, mushrooms, with miso-tahini dressing, Braggs, black pepper and nooch.
To make this story even funnier, my mother keeps telling me that I don't have bursitis - I have GOUT. Which, if you don't know, most often occurs in people who eat fatty meats and fried foods. Which I obviously don't. But I guess anything's possible. Because my life is ridiiiiiiculous.
The elbow is still swollen but it feels less painful - mostly just sore. I'll keep you posted. Unless I die a horrible gouty death. 'Til then, a lighter note.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Slightly Different Miso

When I remember, I like to add either tofu or rice noodles to my miso soup to bulk it up alongside the vegetables. The other day at my local Asian market, I grabbed a pack of tofu shirataki noodles: the best of both worlds. I've tried them a couple times before and like them, despite a couple Amazon reviews deeming them "a truly vile product," ha!
I usually use dried and rehydrated shiitake mushrooms in my miso soups. This time I grabbed these cute bunapis:

I also added in some of the last of the roasted kabocha squash because I had it. Then the usual: spinach, hijiki seaweed, shredded carrot, sesame seeds, and fresh ginger, spiced with anise seeds, red pepper flakes, and sriracha. Plus miso paste, obviously.

Lookit that electric kabocha! Anyway, I really liked the shirataki noodles in the soup. Some people don't like the texture but I think I rush the rice noodles occasionally and they can be too toothsome for me. Plus the extra protein is nice, as well as going grainless. Infinite possibilities! And so easy. I've been collecting soup recipes all winter but still feel a little uncomfortable in the kitchen here, so I've not been making them. Miso soup takes like zero time, though. Like, time to chop the vegetables and boil the water, dassit!
What soup recipes have you all been hoarding recently?? I need more. At least enough to last me until July. This is the most recent addition. Sounds interesting, right? But...does one dip bread into bread soup? Meta....
Okay, enjoy the evening, peeps.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Chai Tea Snow Day

So, like I said the other night, I've not been drinking this last week (well, I did last night and remembered what poison can do to yr body), instead turning to tea at nights to wet my whistle.
To make it a little more interesting (not that tea is BORING per se, it's just... not booze) I decided to make a chai drink. It may not be entirely traditional, but I like the flavor.
I steep Irish breakfast tea in the boiling water and stir in a little less than 1/2 teaspoon each of: cocoa powder, powdered ginger, and cinnamon. Sweetened with agave and add in a good splash of vanilla almond milk.

It's especially nice tonight, since it's snowing outside. Snow can transform even dirty, tired Bushwick into a sparkly magicland. Some shots from the walk home:

I thew a shot of coffee into the chai as well tonight, as I've got lotsa writing I want to get done (that was the "exciting stuff" to work on, Ingrid - sorry to tease!) and snacked on a couple of these cookie bites for dessert.

So now I'm caffeinated and cookiefied and warm. So that's nice. Hope you guys are cozy on this winter weekend evening.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Soup + Salad + Sriracha

And what done with aforesaid kabocha? Yesterday's lunch:

4 chopped collard leaves, 1/4 kabocha squash (the s+p with pav bhaji worked really well. The mix is slightly sweet and nicely spicy.), 1 chopped carrot, and about 1/4 block superfirm sprouted Nasoya tofu. Tossed with a bit of Braggs. Eaten while watching one person eat a spicy sausage AND a burger topped with chili and one person glom down mac and cheese from a deli bar. I try not to hate on people's dietary choices too much but that was really...too much.
Greg and I went out to dinner after work (and yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus) to Wild Ginger. We both got the miso udon noodle bowl and it was warm and perfect for a FUH-REEZING night.

This morning I got into the city early and had a little time to sit at the coffee shop with my book before work. Currently reading Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner. Alongside coffee and a chocolate "energy" bar. Not horrible nutritional info, but I definitely ate chocolate for breakfast.

Later, healthier, I had an apple.
Went to Le Pain Quotidien for lunch, inspired by the mysterious TT Rockwood, for the vegan soup special of the day: minestrone.

Loaded with zucchini, rice, tomatoes, carrots, potatoes, and onions with anoticeable (but not bad)  olive oil flavor and a nice topping of fresh herbs. It was a nice lunch to sit inside at a low key restaurant alone, but kind of pricey for what it was. Eh. I might return though because it's close to work and another seasonal item caught my eye....
Dinner as was a quick bok choy/tofu/kabocha bowl. With Braggs and sriracha and a painful mouth.

Sorry for the quick post; I've got a lot of exciting stuff I want to work on and read tonight. I will catch up with all yr blogs soon! STAY WARM AND EAT SRIRACHA.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Two Days Minus Dinner Plus Other Stuff = Calculus

Today was an incredibly boring and sparse day, food-wise. At my friend's place in the am, then straight to the folks'. On the way I ate a gingersnap Larabar (not usually a flavor I eat but quite enjoyable) and continued the gingery trend with some homemade chai. I've not been drinking booze this last week (! I know !) and have been drinking tea a lot instead. At the folks' I brewed some black tea along with some ginger tea they had, and added a dash of cinnamon. It's pretty enjoyable. I'd have added non-dairy milk and agave if I were home. If I make it again here I'll take a photo for you.
Instead, here are Cicero and Seneca, in synch.

Now I'm home trying to make dinner a little less boring, cooking up some kabocha squash:

I brushed the inside of the squash with olive oil, added salt and pepper, and threw in some pav bhaji masala spice mix I made way back when. Mostly because I have no idea how else to use the stuff up. Who knows if it'll taste alright, but when has that stopped me before?
Anyway, I've gone out the last couple night so dinners have been either non-existent or really quick (crackers and nuts or something) and undocumented. However, here are the other meals from the previous two days:

Saturday breakfast of a Pink Lady apple at 9:30, the orange at 12, and the 22 Days Goji Mate Firecracker bar at 5. In between, I had a "collard wrap salad"

I figured a collard wrap wouldn't stay together if I brought it to work for lunch so I chopped everything up that I usually put in a collard wrap (collards, mushroom, carrot, bell pepper, zucchini, sweet potato) and dressed it with tahini and Braggs.
Strata!!! (I love that word.)

Sunday afternoon I had an Art's Blend Pro-Bar and the seltzer-OJ-apple cider vinegar drink. That gross brown blob is part of the "mother" from the ACV. Yum, right?

Later in the day, a BIG SALAD.

Spinach, mushroom, carrot, Japanese sweet potato, bell pepper, zucchini, and sunflower seeds in a tahini-miso-red pepper dressing.

That's All, Folks.

Friday, January 18, 2013

A Few New Things

Bought bok choy to change the regular miso soup up a little but I don't have anymore mushrooms so I chopped up the bok choy, shredded a carrot, and added some tofu. With Braggs and sriracha, had it for lunch the next day.

Pretty sure you guys know what apples and oranges look like. That's been breakfast most days, except once, this:

Pumpernickel bread with tahini and agave syrup PLUS an orange (eaten later as a snack.)
I've also been trying to do that thing that lots of healthy people keep jib-jabbering about (j/k no disrespect): warm water with lemon juice first thing in the morning. Well, okay, I did that once (today) with goji berries and once (yesterday) with apple cider vinegar. I'm healthy now, right? I can go back to my first thing in the morning thing being saying "uuuugggghhhh," then grabbing an apple and an orange and running out the door? Cool. No photos because I still need to run out the door.
Lunch today was root vegetable soup with black beans from Paradis, even though I asked for 3 bean chili, since that's what was on their menu but they did not actually have that day. (Paradis! Get it together, dudes!) The root veg soup was probably a better idea, though, and not as suuuper filling as bean chilis are wont to be.

This isn't a great photo but it had onions, kale, tomatoes, butternut squash, and I think parsnips. A sour seedy roll came with the soup and I ate it and it was good.
Dinner was a massive craving I've had lately! Welcome back oh you lovely collard wrap.

I roasted some sweet potatoes yesterday. These wraps (I made two) for dinner today had tahini, mashed sweet potato, shredded carrot, red bell pepper, zucchini, and mushrooms. This is definitely what my body needed, though I may have overloaded the wraps in my excitement.

O, the dusty looking stuff is nooch, haha. That looks a little weird.
And dessert: two a dese.

Plus some raw almonds and crackers. Uhhhh now I'm full. Dassit. Nite. Stay warm.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

NYC Vegan Tour: Integral Natural Foods

So yesterday I saw a tweet...on Twitter...which is where you see tweets...that Gone Pie would have some really delicious (vegan+gluten free) treats at Integral Yoga (it is a yoga studio and wellness spa next door to a natural health foods store + apothecary) . I was especially feeling the mention of blueberry cheesecake, and it was my day off and I had to go into the city anyway to copy zines SO, I headed out.
One of my roommates used to work at Integral and I think I visited him there once a long time ago, but didn't remember much of the place. Occasionally I'll hear of events happening there or see tweets about goodies but I love browsing new health food stores so it's funny that I haven't gone back.
It's situated in the West Village on 13th Street between 7th and 8th Avenues, just south of Chelsea.
A bit of the surrounding area:

And the storefront itself:

Anyway, I wanted to take photos inside for you guys but it's kind of small and it was crowded. The staff seems really knowledgeable and it had a co-op-y vibe in that they were all having long conversations with old ladies asking them about their diets ("I don't eat bread anymore at all.") and dads walking their kids around the aisles ("I think you like the plain one." "No, the chocolate."). There is a juice bar/deli in the back, as well as a surprisingly stocked bulk sections - like, bulk kombu and himalayan pink salts or hot paprika - alongside the usual suspects of granola, etc.
There is fresh produce in the back, a small medicinal and household goods section, and prepared foods. I couldn't find the Gone Pie products (!) but did see raw desserts prepared by Rockin Raw. Like, Raw German Chocolate cake that looked INCREDIBLE but they were pretty expensive (as most raw desserts are - $9.35 for a big slice) and I definitely did not need to eat one of those myself.
Instead, I picked up these items:

Funny to pick up a Liquiteria juice elsewhere than Liquiteria but this was on sale! (It was probably a day old or something) Usually these are 8 bucks. They also carry juices from Terri and The Squeeze.

A Reed's Culture Club Kombucha. Shen, this is what you found, right? This is a Ginger-Goji flavor. It was very good. (Drank it the next day.) I realize now that Reed's also makes a ginger candy that I like a lot. Dudes know Ginger.
And this Kale-Quinoa salad with cranberries from The Squeeze (whose food truck I visited last year.)

Eh, it was okay. There was basil and hazelnuts in it, which gave the salad a pesto-y flavor that I didn't really expect and the cranberries were too sweet. The kale was also not wilted enough, in my opinion. Not particularly recommended.
The store though, was great. I'll definitely be back and try at a different time to get some interior shots for you. And maybe find the Gone Pie stuff?? Abby, do you know where that sort of stuff goes? I guess I could have asked an employee...
Outside was this sad state:

 But you guys know the veganized saying, there's no use crying over spilled tomatoes.
I copied my zines and walked downtown. Here are a couple more shots from the walk back.

And home again, home again, jiggety jig. From the J train subway platform: