Saturday Sites: Week Thirty-Nine

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  1. This list, yes.

  2. These cycling uniforms… Bwahaha. I’m going to get one for spin biking at the gym.

  3. This vegetarian take on kung pao chicken sounds tasty.

  4. The best foodie vacations in the West!

  5. I really loved this piece. It’s true that no two relationships are the same, nor should we expect them to be. What works for me won’t necessarily work for you, and vice versa.

  6. Bwahaha! I’m not sure which of these is my favorite — they’re all good!

  7. I can’t wait to try these meatless meatballs!

  8. Your sleeping position and what it says about you?

  9. Ohhh no, but ohhh YES… This made me laugh.

  10. This would make an excellent Fall-time cocktail!

  11. An interesting map, comprised of a state-by-state analysis on the food related words people share most over twitter.

  12. Sometimes just the sound of a certain dessert makes you want to dive on in…

  13. It’s true that I gained much knowledge from watching Kindergarten Cop when I was a kid (you know the line I’m talking about), and in line with that, these words.

  14. Ehhh… However, while I am all for empowerment and reality, this is a weird story.

  15. While I’d totally settle on eating malasadas right now, this also sounds rather tasty!

  16. Oh heyyy — being highly sensitive can have some perks, after all.

  17. Alright. I died laughing at so many of these. THAT HORSE LESSON!

  18. Let’s cake soon.

  19. I love, love, love this.

  20. A neat way to capture the unavoidable quickness that time passes with with raising kids and/or life, in general.

  21. This looks and sounds like a delicious breakfast option… I shall examine closer (with a translator), soon.

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies

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Do you ever wonder where your days go?  The last few weeks have been nothing short of a blur. At times I imagine that there will be some day in my life where I miss this pace, but that takes a lot of convincing.  My posts here feel like they’re sporadic at best, because there aren’t enough hours in the day to balance keeping up with kids, sports schedules that leave a lot of mini-trips out of town, everyday living — cooking, cleaning, time managing, the mountains of dishes and laundry that never seem to disappear completely — and writing anything meaningful.

Someday perhaps I will miss keeping up with four different schedules, or meal planning for anywhere from two to eight people with twenty minutes notice, or going to bed at 3 AM only to wake up at 7AM and spend the entire day on my feet taking care of everything and everyone else. Someday… but right now, a slower pace would be welcomed with open arms.

I’ve learned, in the last ten years, to simply be flexible. To expect unexpected change, or extra folks in the house to have to feed, or plans that change at the very last minute. We’re right in the midsts of football and water polo season. Practice schedules make things a little hectic, on top of already existent school schedules. I find myself constantly thinking of ways to feed both 16 year old and 9 year old athletes. These cookies were born out of my volunteering to provide “healthy poolside snacks” for a recent water polo tournament. I wanted to create something high in protein, high in carbs, and relatively low in both sugar and fat. Each of these cookies roughly breaks down to 150 calories, 13 grams carbohydrates, 9 grams protein, 7 grams fat, and 7 grams sugar. These cookies went over well with both the kids and parents and will certainly be something I make again in the near future!

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Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Protein Cookies

Yields about 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Ingredients:
2 cups oat flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup brazil nut protein powder
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup sorghum flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup light brown sugar
2 cups smooth peanut butter
4 egg whites, lightly beaten
1 large ripe banana, mashed
1/2 cup greek yogurt, vanilla or plain
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 cups dark chocolate chips

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Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix together the oat flour, whole wheat flour, brazil nut protein powder, rolled oats, sorghum flour, baking soda and salt.

In another bowl, combine the sugar, peanut butter, egg whites, banana, yogurt and vanilla. Mix until completely combined and smooth.  Scrape the wet ingredients into your dry ingredients. Mix the ingredients together until you form a dough (I actually prefer to do this by hand, almost kneading the dough together). Mix in the nuts and chocolate chips.

Scoop the dough out and roll it into 1-inch balls. Place on the prepared baking sheets, about 1 1/2-inches apart. Flatten with a fork, then bake for 8-10 minutes, until just golden around the edges. Let the cookies sit on the baking sheets for 5 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack to cool completely.

Make sure the cookies have cooled completely before storing in an airtight container.

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Day to Day Life: Week Thirty-Eight

Here’s a look at the last week:

Craig’s dad Keith and his wife Mary Ella were still in town at the beginning of the week. Here’s a proud Pops before we went out to dinner on their last night in Ashland.

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And a few generation of Wright men.

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Mary Ella you’re making it on The Blog again this week. Come visit me more and I will put you on here all the damn time!

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I gave Chicken a bath one morning, but she got really cold afterwards… So I stuck her on a heating pad. She was quite pleased. (P.S. I feel like there should be a Part II to our ongoing pigeon saga…)

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Alaskan Coho salmon is delicious…

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Especially when slapped in a sandwich experiment that turns out well! This was fresh salmon on toasted seed + nut whole grain bread, with homemade BBQ sauce, tomatoes out of our garden, and microgreens tossed in a spicy garlic lemon vinaigrette. SO DAMN GOOD!

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Smoky skies around here with the wildfires burning around us…

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I had a recipe included in the Huffington Post this week, in an article featuring 11 delicious vegetarian recipes. To celebrate, I made more ramen! (And ate it for two days.)

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Pre-dinner drinks at home with Pops and Mimi induces these faces.

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Since the adults were drinking, Silas decided he needed a cocktail as well. Cheers, little dude.

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We went to Vincent’s water polo tournament in California this week. I offered to bring protein cookies to contribute to the poolside healthy snacks… and then after the offer, I had to learn how to make a protein cookie. I worked backwards, working by nutrient contents via a food calculator app on my phone. These dark chocolate peanut butter protein cookies were a hit with the kids. Recipe this coming week.

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One of the hardest shots to watch when your kid is the goalie.

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Chicken got to come on the road trip. We didn’t intend to smuggle her into the hotel this time, but… I felt bad leaving her in her cage in the parking lot. So I stuck her in my camera bag and brought her in. Hah! The real adventure was getting her out the next morning when she wanted to poke her head out of the bag with three other folks in the elevator.

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The movement of water has always mesmerized me.

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Vincent, generally kicking butt like he does.

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Silas also had an out of town football game this weekend. He got to play quarterback a bit and his team totally kicked ass, winning 34-0.

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Proud dad and proud Silas Henry.

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What to do after a long week and many days in the 90+ degree weather? Drink one of these, of course.

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I hope you’ve had a lovely week!

Meatless Monday: Raw Green Bean Salad with Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Feta

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Even as a child (because I was  weird one!) green beans were one of my favorite vegetables! Granted, those green beans also often accompanied a frozen package of corn, peas, and oddly square-shaped carrots.

Last growing season I accidentally planted a couple bush bean plants instead of the pole beans I really wanted to grow. We didn’t have much of a harvest. This year, I planted some pole beans and anticipated a poor grow-season. However, we’ve been bombarded with a frequently consistent crop of green beans.

This salad is easy to throw together, flavorful and tastes great as a side dish or main dish.

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Raw Green Bean Salad with Slow Roasted Tomatoes and Feta

Ingredients:

For the tomatoes:
1 pound Roma tomatoes, cut into rounds 1/4-inch thick
1/2 pound grape tomatoes, cut in half
good quality olive oil for drizzling, about 1/4 cup
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

For the salad:
2 cups fresh green beans, cleaned* and cut into 1 1/2″ pieces
zest from one lemon
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced fine
1/4 cup crumbled feta
salt and pepper, to taste

  • To clean the beans, simply wash them and snap off the ends, removing the tough string if one is present.

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Directions:

Prepare the tomatoes:  Preheat oven to 225 degrees F. Arrange 2 oven racks to the middle and bottom positions of your oven. Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Arrange the tomatoes, cut side up, on the baking sheets. Drizzle tomatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 3 hours, until tomatoes are soft and shriveled. Rotate the sheets among the racks every 45 minutes or so, to cook the tomatoes evenly. Cool tomatoes until they’re comfortable to handle.

Prepare the dressing: In a small bowl or measuring cup, whisk together the lemon zest, juice, olive oil, vinegar and minced garlic until completely combined.

Prepare the salad: In a large bowl, combine the cut beans, roasted tomatoes (as many of them as you want; the rest can be stored in a small glass jar filled with olive oil) and feta. Pour the oil and vinegar mixture over the beans along with some salt and pepper, then gently toss until everything is well coated. Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes, up to a few hours, before serving.

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Day to Day Life: Week Thirty-Seven

The last week:

The final supermoon of 2014, the Harvest Moon, made a lovely appearance this week.

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One little Chicken trying to eat one giant cornflake.

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We drove up to Portland to pick up my husband’s dad and stepmom… and the same cornflake eating Chicken came along for the car ride and hotel-stay. (Oh-em-gee I am the crazy bird lady at the ripe ‘ole age of 29!)

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On the night we arrived in town, we had Mexican food.. including the strongest dang margaritas EVER. Mine had a little tinge of green, my husband’s? Almost clear, indicating a drink almost entirely made of tequila.

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When we picked up my in-laws, we trekked into downtown Portland because they hadn’t ever been there. Of course Voodoo Doughnuts was a necessary stop. We opted for the voodoo dozen.

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We also decided to explore the food trucks along 10th and Alder for lunch. I share my Khao Man Gai with Pops and Mimi. (DELICIOUS!)

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My husband got an order of Kargi Gogo’s Khachapuri — a Georgian cheese bread, which was also very tasty!

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Vincent (AHS water polo varsity goalie) had a water polo scrimmage this week. Both the boys and girls teams won by quite a large number of points!

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Although I generally don’t buy green grapes because they tend to be more tart than sweet, these locally grown green grapes were superb!

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Oregon albacore! 

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We went wine tasting with Mimi and Pops one afternoon (or late morning, if we need to get technical).

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Afterwards we had a late lunch… I love the jerk chicken sandwich at Jasper’s.

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Craig’s dad brought me some flowers from the Ashland farmer’s market one morning.

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Pizza night! My father-in-law tried this BBQ Chik’n pizza and said he really didn’t know it wasn’t chicken. He ate a few more slices the next day, too.

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Yep, crazy bird lady. Hi, stairs Chicken.

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Silas had an evening football game under the stadium lights last night.

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Whole wheat peach galettes for a late morning breakfast today!

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