Monkey Eats More Than Just Bananas

Eating Healthy and Exercising

CSA Bounty June 14, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — monkeyeats @ 2:24 pm

When we moved here last year one of the exciting things was that there was a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm nearby. Unfortunately last year they had already sold all there shares when we moved in March. This year I was determined to get a share. I signed up really early for my summer produce. The farm while not certified organic has signed a pledge to adhere to organic practices.

This weeks haul:

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1 head of lettuce
2 pac choi
broccoli rabe
2 stalks green garlic
2 quarts of strawberries

The snap peas and shelling peas weren’t doing as well, so they were just for tasting. I picked a few and brought them home to share with hubby.

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I don’t think I’ve tasted strawberries this good in a long time. I got to pick them myself and they are yummy. Strawberries are my all time favorite fruit. I look forward to them every year. I like them plain, though. I don’t like to make fancy desserts with them, I just want to eat them au natural.

I’ve been really excited to be a part of the CSA this year. Not only am I getting great “organic” produce, but I’m supporting a local farm as well.

You can find a local CSA here.

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Coconut Lime Cranberry Granola Bars June 12, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — monkeyeats @ 6:18 pm
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Have you seen Rachael’s contest over at Coconut & Lime. You can win a Vita-Mix Blender. I saw that and remembered my struggle this morning to blend my green monster. To enter you need to create a recipe with none other than coconut and lime. What could I make with coconut and lime?

Well one of my favorite larabars is Key Lime. And I really enjoyed the granola bars that I made earlier this week from Oh She Glows. Could I make a coconut and lime version?

Turns out I can.

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C(oconut) L(ime) C(ranberry) Granola Bars

1.5 cups oats
¼ cup ground flax seed
¼ cup sesame seeds
¾ cup unsweetened coconut
¼ cup chopped raw almonds
¼ cup craisins
Zest of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lime
¾ cup brown rice syrup
½ tsp. vanilla extract
½ tsp. almond extract
2 T. natural cane sugar
¼ cup almond butter

Mix first six ingredients in a large bowl. Combine the remaining ingredients in a saucepan on the stove over medium heat consistently stiring. Heat to boiling, lower heat to low and continue stirring for 3-4 minutes, until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat and add to dry ingredients. Stir to combine. Press mixture into a baking dish (I used an 8×8 pan. Allow to cool. Cut into 16 bars.

The CLC granola bars are wicked good! You have to try them yourself. You might want to try pressing a few tablespoons of sweetened coconut on top for some extra coconut flavor.

 

Baingan Bharta June 9, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — monkeyeats @ 10:12 pm

Baingan Bharta is one of my favorite dishes at Indian restaurants. Unfortunately the Indian restaurant that we frequent doesn’t have it on the menu, they have an eggplant dish, but its not the same.

I found the recipe on Priyanka’s website, but I didn’t have all of the ingredients on hand. One of the ingredients that I often use in Indian cooking is curry paste.
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It quickly gives me the flavor I’m looking for in one jar.

Baingan Bharta

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2 eggplants
2 cloves of garlic, sliced into 4 slices each
1T. olive oil
2 cloves of garlic minced
1 onion, chopped
2T Curry Paste
1 cup baby bella mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup frozen peas
1 cup tomato sauce

Preheat oven to 350.

Make four cuts in each eggplant. Insert a slice of garlic into each cut. Place on a broiling pan in the oven. Bake for 15 minutes. Turn on Broiler and rotate eggplants every 7 to 8 minutes until eggplant skin is paper thin (I have an electric oven and the skin didn’t really char, but the eggplants started to “deflate”).

Remove eggplant from oven and set aside to cool for 10 minutes.

Once cool enough to touch, peel skin from eggplant, and place eggplant in a bowl and mash with a spoon.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet on medium heat. Add onion and minced garlic. Cook approximately 5 minutes until onion is softened. Add curry paste and stir to coat onions and garlic. Cook additional 30 seconds. Add eggplant and mushrooms. Cook until mushrooms are almost soft. Add peas and tomato sauce. Cook until peas are warm. Serve over brown basmati rice.

Check out the following giveaways in the blog world:

Eating Bird Food is giving away Crofter’s Superfruit Spread.

Gluten Free Gidget is giving away a ton of stuff for her 100th post.

 

MONSTER!!! June 8, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — monkeyeats @ 6:13 pm
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I tried my first green monster today. It looks sort of like a brown monster, I think due to the chocolate and the strawberries, but there is definitely a lot of spinach in this baby.

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1c. Unsweetened Almond Breeze
4 frozen strawberries
3 frozen peach slices
1T. chia seeds
1T. chocolate brown rice protein powder
2 handfulls spinach
2 drops stevia

Lunch today was a more spinach. I bought a lot a BJ’s last week and its getting to the point where it needs to be used up. I added cucumber, red pepper goat cheese, and a Quorn cutlet. Topped it with some balsamic Vinegar…YUM!

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Have you tried the Quorn cutlets? They are so good. I wouldn’t say that they really taste like chicken, but they can be substituted for chicken. The consistency really isn’t the same as chicken, which is fine by me, since I often don’t like the consistency of meat. Before today I was preparing them in the toaster oven, but summer is quickly approaching (not that you can really tell here in New England, I don’t even have my windows open, I like it hot!), so today I tried the microwave method, and while not quite as good as the toaster oven this is a good alternative for those hot days, or if you are in a hurry.

Despite not feeling good all weekend I finally got some energy yesturday, and I made granola bars. Ange over at OSG has done it again. The last time I made her recipe for raw chocolate chip cookies I was a little nearvous, but this time I jumped right in. I did tweak the recipe a little just to include some of my favorite flavors, but it was delish! Hubby looked at me with a very serious face and said “These are good!”.

Instead of using the hemp seeds, I substituted 1/4 cup of chopped uncrystallized candied ginger and 1/4 cup crasins. Next time I think I will cut back on the ginger and increase the crasins.

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The bars are small, but they are so filling. Nice and chewy, just the way I like them.
For the original recipe click here.

I’m off to go to the gym for a cardio workout. I didn’t feel good all weekend, so I’m going to take it easy.

I think dinner tonight is salmon burgers, another spinach salad and a quinoa salad. I’m working on the recipe for the quinoa salad and as soon as I get it right I’ll share it with you.

What is your favorite granola bar ingredient?

 

Do you Kombucha? June 7, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — monkeyeats @ 2:53 pm

I finally tried Kombucha this weekend after seeing so much of it in the blog world. I picked the grape flavor to try. It was yummy!
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Appearance: It took me a while to get past the floating glob. I eventually ended up pouring it into a separate glass to avoid drinking the glob.
Taste: Yum, it tasted like really good fizzy grape juice.
Cons: Price $$$ at $3.49 per bottle it is pricey; however each bottle contains two servings. I did manage to only drink about half the bottle the first day, saving the other half for the next day and it was still fizzy and good the second day.

So if your wallet can handle it I recommend trying Kombucha!