sabra

National Hummus Day!!

IS TODAY!

IMG_5725

Ok, who is excited about this one!?!  I know I’m not alone here.  Hummus is basically the best food on the planet.  The real shame is that I can’t enjoy it as much as I want these days since my son has a sesame allergy.  Any long time readers know I used to live on hummus.  It made up 50% of my diet on a conservative day, and I’m not exaggerating.  And it all started back in NYC with the introduction of Sabra.  Taste buds meet heaven.  And then there were wedding bells. 🙂

IMG_5707

We even went on a honeymoon together.

Anyway, I’ve been eating hummus again.  I just couldn’t stay away.  Like a junkie I got a teeny taste back when V was born and since then I’ve been sneaking it whenever P is asleep.  Having sesame in the house is a tricky situation but we have a fridge in the garage that has now become “the allergen fridge”.  And you would not BELIEVE what it looks like right now.  Sabra bursting from every nook and cranny!  I’m so happy!  My lunches are made!  Dip life to the fullest, amiright?

IMG_5730

So in honor of National Hummus Day I made this yummy quinoa salad for dinner last night.  That’s the cool thing about Sabra’s flavors – beyond making a meal on their own, they can just as easily be used as a sauce that takes simple ingredients to the next level without any effort.  I chose the basil pesto hummus because it’s spring-y and I like rocking with seasonal flavors.  Plus our garden is booming with parsley and basil right now so it seemed a natural choice.

IMG_5732

Pesto Quinoa Chicken Salad with Herbs [gluten free]

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup tri-color quinoa
  • 10 oz basil pesto hummus
  • 2-3 cups spring greens
  • 3 chicken thighs (grilled, baked, prepared however you want)
  • 8-10 basil leaves, chopped chiffonade
  • bunch of parsley, leaves removed (some stems are fine too)
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Cook 1 cup tri color quinoa (1 cup quinoa to 2 cups liquid simmered until cooked).

Prepare chicken thighs however you want (pan fry on the stove, grill on the BBQ, or bake in the oven).  Once they’ve cooked and cooled, chop them and add to quinoa.

Mix in spring greens, then add hummus and toss until salad is well coated in hummus.  Salt and pepper as needed.

Finally add chopped herbs on top and serve.

IMG_5713IMG_5716IMG_5717IMG_5718IMG_5724

I have this handy tool for basil and I totally love it.  I’ve had it for years (I got it at my wedding shower) and I use it daily over the summer months.

Don’t skimp on the hummus…you could thin it a little to make it more saucy (I do this for salad dressing ALL THE TIME).  Just mix a drizzle of olive oil with lemon juice and then whisk in the hummus.  It can be as thick or thin as you want, just taste as you go so you don’t mess up the delicious hummus flavor.

This grain + green + protein combo can go so many ways.  What is your favorite hummus flavor?  Feeling in the mood for chipotle?  Me too.  That’s def one of my favorites.  It wants corn + rice + pulled pork.

IMG_5731

So now some fun stuff to share…

On May 21st, Sabra will be giving away coupons to celebrate National Hummus Day at nhd.sabra.com.  #HummusDay

Set your alarm on your calendar so you can GET YOURS!

Double party weekend

Every once in a while there are certain weekends which seem to have everything happening.  All on the same day.  You know those weekends, right?  Where you have plans to do one thing and then you find out there’s four weddings, a baby shower, a football game, a marathon, the Art & Wine Festival, and all the other things going on…this past weekend was one of those.  So is October 12th.  Why is everything happening on Oct 12th?

Anyway, I switched my Saturday shift to allow me to attend two birthday parties.  The first was for Cooper…the big one year old!

IMG_5519 IMG_5520 IMG_5521 IMG_5522

Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper.  :)  Aside from the strangle attempt, these kids are besties in the making.  I know I say it every time we get together, but I love that one of my BFFs from high school and I have boys so close in age.  Good thing we moved to Nor Cal. 

IMG_5578

Before we headed out of town I woke up early to do a Jillian workout.  I’m already feeling the difference (read: stronger) from a week or so ago when I first started doing the Shred regularly. 

Anyway, after showering and nursing P, I made breakfast (the above GF toast with peanut butter and fried eggs).

IMG_9215 

While I ate, this little lazy pants fell asleep in Kyle’s arms.  Sadly, it was short lived, as we had to strap him into the carseat to head to the East Bay pretty much right after. 

No pics of the birthday party fare, but I snacked on carrots and chips, and had a veggie burger (no bun) with avocado and grapes for lunch.

IMG_5528

C didn’t really know what to make of the cake at first, which was hilarious.  It seemed to anger him more than anything else.  He kept poking the frosting and eventually started picking pieces off and (as if deeming the weird blue stuff inedible) throwing them on the floor.  Lots ended up in his ear too. 

IMG_5538 

Eventually, though, he figured it out.  And dug in. 

Too bad the weather was yucky because I would have loved to romp around in the yard with the boys.  Can’t hate on the rain though, because it has been MIA since well before P was even born.  I don’t think he’d actually been in rain before this weekend.  Oh the rough life of a California baby. 

After the cake fun we drove over to my parents’ house (since Elaine’s a friend from home we were in the same town).

Family shot!

IMG_9217

The second party was for my sister’s boyfriend.  Chris is now a super ancient 30 year old – time to celebrate!!  It was also their last day in CA before flying back to Australia.  :( 

IMG_0465 IMG_0466

My parents hosted a BBQ, which had Field Roast sausage for the veggie crew (aka me and Kyle).  We each had two sausages.  I’ve missed Field Roast!  Forgot how much I like it.  It kinda funked up my stomach though.  Boo.  

IMG_0467

That salad above was really freakin’ good – with cherry tomatoes, green beans, roasted sweet and regular potatoes, and a balsamic dressing.  Total winner.  If you’re reading, Parker, tell your mom I want the recipe please.

IMG_0464 

Quite a spread.  I had watermelon, shrimp, and carrots with Sabra (duh).  And champagne!  Who doesn’t love the champs?  I went back for seconds of the salad and Field Roast.

It was especially nice to have a crowd of people fighting over my son because it meant I had some time to eat without a babe on my lap.  We should have parties all the time for the extra hands. 

IMG_0468

Make a wish!! 

When we put P down, the night was just getting started.  I made it til 10 pm before my yawning was too much. 

IMG_0469

The next morning we woke up bright and early, planning on golfing.

IMG_0472

But brunch won.  Pancakes and scrambled eggs courtesy of my parents.  Topped in strawberries and maple syrup…mmmm…

IMG_5561 

We all lounged on the couch watching football (including depressing Packers & Niners losses) and Laura got in some last minute nephew bonding.

IMG_5564

Hahahah.  This photo is especially funny because patty-cakes really doesn’t cry much.  At all.  But this was well into the day without any napping (and tons of stimulation).  Which is why it came as no surprise when I took him into my arms…

IMG_5567 

And he fell right to sleep.

Heart.  Melting. 

IMG_5565 

These are truly the moments I cherish. 

For lunch we got take-out sandos from Diablo Foods.

IMG_5570 

Mine had avocado, goat cheese, sprouts, honey mustard, lettuce, tomatoes, and sunflower seeds on GF bread (Udi’s).  Delish! 

IMG_5568 

I also had Mary’s Gone crackers, a Trilogy Kombucha and potato egg salad.

This is what happens when you send your husband who loves you to the store.  I ended up stuffing myself on the sando, so I saved the potato salad for dinner that night. 

After lunch we had to go back home to Davis because I was working night shift.  I had 3 chocolate peanut butter cups from Trader Joe’s on the car ride. 

Pacman and I were both totally sick of being in the car so we went for a stroll right after we got home.

IMG_5571

First time in the BOB!  As you can see he assed out on the trip.

We did a quick loop around the neighborhood, then I showered and chowed down.  Potato salad meet face.  This will porbably come as no surprise but I ate the whole tub.  As in pounds (plural!) of potato and egg salad.  It was fantastic though and powered me all through night shift.

Well, that and the snacks I brought.  Roasted nuts.  Dried coconut meat.  Banana.  Nature Valley bars.  Etc.

Not a bad weekend.

Mex for all

IMG_2866 

You’d think after a week of breakfast burritos Kyle wouldn’t be stoked for Mexican night, but you’d be wrong.  [The above is a burrito I made for him with Boca veggie chik’n burgers, salsa, & cheddar]

IMG_2885 

For both of us, I made this huge thing of brown rice, pinto beans, and salsa because it allows for flexible meal creation.

brown rice –> 2 cups in the rice maker
pinto beans –> 1 cup in the rice maker
salsa –> 1/2 cup of Sabra’s mango peach salsa (!!!)

Super easy.

IMG_2884 

For vegan options: serve with avocado & Daiya cheese, in a burrito for breakfast, lunch or dinner; or over a bed of lettuce; or nacho-style over tortilla chips.

For vegetarian options: serve with avocado & cheddar or jack cheese, with similar options as mentioned above.

For high protein options: Add an egg or scrambled tofu.

For gluten free options: Serve on a GF tortilla (like Udi’s) or over lettuce or GF chips.

IMG_3113

Ummm yeah, did you know that Sabra makes bruschetta???   We’ve plowed through two in the last week.  In addition to the fruity salsa. 

IMG_3114 

This is a vegan and gluten free burrito, with Daiya cheese (cheddar and mozzarella), with lentils, guacamole, and salsa on an Udi’s tortilla. 

As you can see, it’s become an obsession.

IMG_3111 

There’s no such thing as too much Mexican food. 🙂

IMG_3112 IMG_3115 

For the record, my gut was NOT pleased with this meal.  Sometimes convenience wins.  Especially when you’re trying to let the little things go (an ongoing battle for this type A working mom). 

Big picture:

  • there’s nutritious food on the table
  • the flavors rock my face off
  • I didn’t have to do much to prepare it

I can only be so strong in resisting my taste buds.  They beckon, oh how they beckon!  Denying myself certain FODMAPs blows. 

The next day I sucked it up and went super squeaky clean FODMAPs free (a la elimination phase).  And within 24 hours I was pretty much back to normal. 

What I Ate…T/W

My Tuesday and Wednesday.  For your viewing pleasure.

IMG_4044

Breakfast.  Banana bread + fried egg.  Decaf, decaf, decaf.

IMG_0150

Lunch.  Celery, carrots, zucchini egg muffins with fresh grind peanut butter.

After Kyle woke up I went for a short jog around the ‘hood and then we headed downtown for fro-yo.

IMG_0157

Snack.  Cultive mix of banana & white chocolate fro-yo topped with slivered almonds, shredded coconut, blueberries, and raspberries.

IMG_4099

Dinner.  Thai Peanut Zucchini Noodle Fry.

IMG_4076

Check out the squash from my coworkers’ garden!  I also scored some medjool dates and oranges from her.  The cherry tomatoes are from my own garden.

IMG_4078 IMG_4080 IMG_4081 IMG_4082

I love this recipe and since I have squash aplenty it’ll probably keep on happening. 🙂

IMG_0097

Dessert.  Theo dark chocolate with almonds and sea salt.  <— the best Theo bar of all.

IMG_4085

Breakfast.  Banana bread + fried eggs.  Decaf, decaf, decaf.

This was a delayed meal since I stayed a bit after swim lessons.  I was haaangry by the time I got home so I inhaled it (hence the missing bite in the photo).

IMG_4086

Lunch.  Summer squash frittata, veggie chips, cherry tomatoes from my garden.  [P.S. I ate way-ay-ay more chips than pictured]

After Kyle woke up we went for a family walk.

IMG_0083

Snack.  Ghirardell’s dark chocolate.  Kyle had a business meeting in SF a few weeks ago and brought back a bag of sampler chocolates for me, which I’ve been slowly savoring.  Sea salt soiree is my absolute favorite, so naturally it was the first one I finished off.  I’d never heard of the intense dark cabernet matinee before, but it was lovely.  Like a chocolate grape combo.  Mmmm.

After we showered we went to the farmer’s market to meet up with some friends.  I bought a bag of kettlepop and we did the produce portion of our grocery shopping.  After hanging out for a short while longer, we headed to the co-op to finish off the grocery shopping.

IMG_4057

Dinner.  Tempeh sando on The Essential Baking Co GF bread with Daiya provolone, chard from the garden, dijon mustard, avocado & Nasoya whipped nayonaise.  Whew!  What a loaded ‘wich!

I’ll share a more detailed post about the way I prepared the tempeh later.

IMG_3739

Dessert.  Maqui Berry Mojito Kombucha + the rest of my kettlepop from the market.

I’m so so so into this Kombucha flavor.  I have no clue what possessed me to try it since I hate mint, but I was at the store and it sounded so refreshing I just went with it.  Who knows what’s up with my bizarro taste buds?!  First the goat cheese, then the banana chips, and now this?!  Whatever.  I’m just rolling with it.  Food-gasms abound.

And not that you asked…but I did take pics…

Here’s a few of the things I’ve been making for Kyle since he’s doing night shifts as well.

IMG_4083

Dinner on the road.  Couscous with Sabra hummus, parmesan, green beans, and TJ’s 21 seasoning.

IMG_4084

Breakfast.  Leftover couscous with Sabra roasted garlic salsa and cherry tomatoes from the garden.

IMG_4097

Dinner on the road.  Annie’s mac n cheese shells with green beans.

IMG_4093 IMG_4098

Plus some help from my sous chef.  🙂

IMG_4087

Breakfast.  Nachos with the works.  Chips, pinto beans (made in the rice cooker), Sabra salsa, cheddar cheese, and Sabra spicy guacamole.

IMG_4089

This plate was no joke.

IMG_4049

Snack.  Home-made baked “fries”.

I can’t wait til this weekend when we will both be home together on normal schedules and not working night shifts.  Eating the same meal in the same place at the same time!?!  Novel concept.

Weekly Recap

This week was fun.  Busy and not busy in perfect amounts.  One thing I’ve noticed about working part time is there’s a big (HUGE) difference between 2 shifts and 3 shifts.  It may not sound like it, but I feel like the time off allows me to get so much more done.  And rather than fill it with errands and chores, I can actually hang out and relax and enjoy myself.  It’s lovely. 

Here are some of the things I ate this week.

Breakfasts

IMG_3549 

Baked oatmeal bars with blueberries [sorry about the crappy pic] and peanut butter.

I failed to take a photo of the huge dish I made, but it was bomb.  Initially I was going to try and make granola bars, but I scraped that plan half way through and just made a really thick oatmeal bar instead.  I didn’t write down the recipe but I will next time.  It had all kinds of yummy stuff in it – chia seeds, blueberries, goji berries, almond flour, oats, and coconut oil.  I ate it before work on Saturday, and then made another serious dent in it on Sunday morning, and then finished the whole thing off on Tuesday morning. 

Monday morning was a savory one though.

IMG_3534 

Two fried eggs with roasted potatoes and ketchup. 

I’m on a mega pepper kick.  Not usually my thing, but hey, I’m just gonna roll with it.  Don’t worry I’m still a salt fiend through and through.

IMG_3533 

After Tuesday’s breakfast I was out of fresh baked goodies, so I made a loaf of banana bread for the next few mornings. 

IMG_3561 

I had a slice before swim lessons on Wednesday morning.

And then another afterwards.  With nut butter.  Always with nut butter.

IMG_3587

Another slice with an egg.

IMG_3602 IMG_3621

For work breakfasts I have been doing hack versions of the classic PB&J.  [Meaning I ran out of jam and have been using fresh fruit.  And almond butter instead of peanut butter.]  Blueberries on Thursday and banana slices on Friday.  Both on Udi’s GF millet chia bread.

I like sandos only because they are easy to eat one handed while pumping at work.

I pump before my shifts too, but since I’m at home I have a table and can sit and eat like a proper human at the same time.  Multi tasking for the win.

photo

Here’s the 6 am scene.  Banana bread and coffee.  Hands free thanks to the nursing bra!

Lunches

Admittedly I suck at remembering to photograph mid-day meals.  I’m just too busy doing other stuff.  I make a lot of snack plates though so you aren’t missing much.

photo

See? Snack plate with leftover roasted potatoes, carrots, daiya cheddar, and hard boiled eggs.  I probably had nuts on the side too because it’s rare that I don’t have nuts at a meal. 

IMG_3542 IMG_3543 

This may sound crazy but this was my first time having tamales. 

IMG_3539

Impulse buy from Whole Foods. 

IMG_3540 

I really liked them!  I didn’t know what to expect, but they were yummy.  The outside corn layer is thick so there wasn’t a ton of inside stuffing – I’m not sure if that’s how tamales normally are.  I thought the ratio was good.  Just enough tofu and veg.  Without the guacamole it has the potential to be a bit dry, but maybe not.  I will for sure buy again.

IMG_3541 

I had one for lunch with Sabra’s classic guacamole.  Truth: I had WAY MORE guac than as pictured. 

IMG_2426

Salad with greens, celery, cucumbers, tomatoes, hard boiled eggs, and Beyond Meat.  No dressing.  Just olive oil and salt.

IMG_3596

Snack plate.  The amount of peanut butter in the bowl is deceiving.  There’s at least 1/2 cup.  No shame.

IMG_3598

Work lunch: brown rice pasta with parsley, basil, and kale tossed in olive oil, lemon juice, sesame seeds, salt & pepper. [Greens/herbs from my garden, lemon from my neighbor]

IMG_3622 IMG_3624

Work lunch: salad with greens, tomato, roasted potatoes, smoked cheddar goat cheese, and quinoa.  The quinoa was an afterthought once I realized the salad probably wouldn’t hold me over.  I also added some organic miso ginger dressing

Snacks

I have a few recent repeat offenders in the snack department, so here they are.

IMG_3597 IMG_3581

I never liked (okay, I hated) banana chips growing up, but for some reason I felt compelled to buy them this week.  It was my healthy compromise since I really wanted chocolate covering everything from the bulk bins.  Ummm, so yeah, they’re really good!!!  I’ve been enjoying them as a dessert too.

Oh and Kombucha has reared it’s expensive head back into my life as well.  On the daily.  Budget fail.

IMG_3577

One thing that has saved a little cash flow is making our own trail mix.  As you can see above, it has raisins, cashews, peanuts, dark chocolate chips, and gluten free cereal puffs.  Not terribly innovative but definitely cheaper than the pre-made stuff.  The most important thing is that the nuts are salty so they cover the raisins in salt too.  Mmmmm.  We POUND through trail mix like nobody business so this is huge for the bank account.

IMG_3584

Between my breakfasts and snacks, I’m going to make another loaf of banana bread tonight since this one is almost gone.

IMG_3611

Always always always.  All day long.  Nuts for nuts.

IMG_3601

Work snacks: buckwheat granola (meh), carrots and celery, banana, Hail Merry vanilla maple almonds (love!!!), quinoa granola bar (didn’t try yet).

IMG_3625

Work snacks: buckwheat granola, carrots & celery, trail mix.

Dinners

IMG_3494 

Baked tofu, Mary’s Gone crackers, raw goat cheddar, grapes, Milton’s crackers, and salty roasted almonds. 

A typical al fresco meal, but indoors (because it was so hot!). 

IMG_3528

Seitan & quinoa bowl with sriracha vegan aioli.  There’s chard from our garden under there somewhere.

IMG_3544 

Vegan and gluten free tamales. 

This was round two of the aforementioned tamales (even though the pics are from the first serving).  I had the rest of the guacamole (yup, the entire tub just for meeee) and two more tamales.  Can I get a pat on the back for stopping (when I was full) after eating 3 tamales, rather than just finishing off the 4th one just because it was there!?!  So unlike me!

IMG_3566 

Quinoa with salmon and tomato slices.

Those tomatoes were some of the most flavorful ones ever.  Thank you home-grown produce

IMG_3594

Imitation WF fumi salad.

IMG_3620 

Post work assorted mish mash.  [I had the same thing the following night of work too, so no photo]

Holler if you want recipes to any of these and I’ll try to eventually share!