I wanted to share a few recipes I tried out this week that were really good. I mixed things up for breakfast by replacing my standard Greek yogurt/honey/fruit/and granola with baked oatmeal. I made a big casserole dish of baked oatmeal with blueberries, almonds, coconut, cinnamon and vanilla and it lasted me for 3 days. It was really good- my advice is to use a lot of spice because otherwise it can end up tasting a little bland.
My dinners this week have been especially tasty. I tried out this recipe for spaghetti with Kale and my dear boyfriend and I both loved it! I also adapted this recipe for shrimp scampi by using scallops and adding broccoli. (I've also actually used it to make some fantastic shrimp scampi too.)
I also made a couple recipe free dishes that turned out very well. I made artichoke hummus by combining 1 can of chick peas and 2 cans of artichoke bottoms (drained) in my food processor with a couple of cloves of garlic, a little lemon juice, pepper, and a drizzle of olive oil.
For lunch, I made a baked bean bowl by putting a can of baked beans over brown rice and topping it with chopped tomato, chopped green onion, cilantro, sprouts, and a little BBQ sauce. It was really good! I find beans and rice to be very filling, but you can always beef it up with some shredded cooked chicken if you want more protein.
This weekend has been absolutely wonderful. Friday night, my dear boyfriend and I saw Opus at the Southern Rep Theater. We both thought it was a great play. The tagline is "Sex, Drugs, and Chamber Music." It's about the dynamic between the members of a string quartet as they get ready to play Beethoven's Opus 131 at the White House shortly after adding a new member (a young woman) to their group of middle aged men.
Before the play, we went to Iris and had drinks and appetizers. Iris is officially my favorite place to go before a play because it is within walking distance of both the Southern Rep and Le Petite Theaters. The bartender is also known for amazing, creative cocktails. My first cocktail, for example, contained elderflower liqueur, basil, and a pineapple balsamic reduction. My second one contained bourbon, vanilla, ginger liqueur, and Thai tea. My dear boyfriend had one drink that contained scotch, gin, and a plum/cardomom syrup. His other cocktail contained Rye, bitters, beet juice and apple juice. They were all amazing. As for food- we split a cheese plate, 1/2 a dozen oysters, and some short rib rolls that were wrapped in lettuce. It was all delicious!
I also got to wear the purple ruffled shirt that I bought last week. I paired it with black pumps and a pencil skirt. I'm glad I got to wear it because a cold front finally rolled in on Saturday.
On Saturday, I started the day off in a terrible mood because the chance of rain was 75% on and off all day. However, it never really rained! I really wanted to go for a run, but was convinced that the second I got out there, the bottom would fall out. Finally, I decided to just go for it. (I brought my phone with me so I could call home for a ride if I got trapped by rain.) I am so glad I did because I had the best run ever! I was a little nervous because of my horrible 8 mile run, but I shouldn't have been. Clearly, the 78 degree weather played a big part- but I had tons of energy and had a great time! I was also thrilled with my pace. I ran a 9 minute mile pace all the way through mile 6 (54 minutes, compared, for example, to my Crescent City Classic time of 62 minutes), and didn't slow up very much for my last 3 miles. I finished the run in 84:16!
On Saturday evening, we were supposed to have a picnic in the park and listen to the LPO, but that got cancelled due to rain (although it never rained!), so instead my dear boyfriend and I grilled out. We had chicken kabobs, mango chili chicken sausage, and sweet Italian turkey sausage (we cooked a ton of meat so we'd have leftovers to eat this week) along with a side salad. I had blue cheese on multi-grain bread for dessert as well. I really love the amablu Gorgonzola. It is a fairly mild blue cheese that is really creamy. It's great spread on bread or alongside a sliced pear.
Today I have been being pretty lazy. I am about to get up, clean the kitchen, and wash the dogs. Later, I am going to go over to Sarah's house to carve pumpkins, eat pizza, and watch Hocus Pocus. I loved that movie when I was a kid!
All in all this weekend has been just what I needed. It's been so nice to relax and spend some quality time with my dear boyfriend. :)