Produce pancakes

One of the great things about being a teacher is the relationship you develop with students.

Sometimes I have some pretty personal in-depth conversations.

Other times things are light hearted and fun. People have questions for me or give me some tips.

Recently after one of my yoga classes my students and I were talking about losing weight and maintaining weight with healthy eating and exercise, including a regular yoga practice.

We talked about our go-to snacks and other things we love to eat.

We started talking about what I am calling produce pancakes.

Simple, healthy, delicious and filling.

The first recipe I tried were for the Sweet Potato Pancakes:

  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 2 eggs

I microwaved the sweet potato until it was soft enough to scoop out. Sweet potato “guts” went into a bowl with 2 eggs. Whipped everything together.

Depending on if you want sweet or savory you can add seasoning to fit your tastes. (Savory: garlic, salt, pepper, onion powder, etc. Sweet: cinnamon, pumpkin pie spices, etc.)

Sprayed some cooking spray into a skillet. Poured the “batter” in skillet.

The recipe made four pancakes.

The next day I tried the Banana Pancakes:

Preparing to Spring Forward

Twice a year I write about time change. (Read last year’s Spring Forward post here.)

It’s that time again to Spring Forward (Sunday at 2 a.m.). I am not a fan of time change.

I seriously don’t get the point of it. I grew up in Arizona where time change doesn’t occur.

So to my Arizona family members who can never quite get the time difference: Starting Sunday we will be on the same time.

This is the advice I like to give on how to deal with time change:

Review Wednesday: Brawny Produce Protector Reusable Bags

At some point at the grocery store I had noticed green bags for sale, which claimed they could keep produce fresher longer.

My grandpa and I even discussed these. He mentioned he had tried them and they worked. But he didn’t know why.

So I decided to experiment with them myself using Brawny’s Produce Protector Reusable Bags.

I used two fresh slightly green bananas that looked pretty much the same. One went into the green produce bag the other sat in the fruit bowl. (Top left photo)

After four days (top right photo) I compared the bananas. The bottom banana had a few spots.

After a week I compared the two bananas (bottom left photo). The bottom banana, the one that stayed in the fruit bowl, had many more spots than the top. The top hardly had any spots.

After two weeks (bottom right photo) the bananas were both gross but were very different looking. The bottom banana was almost completely black. The top one looks OK. But I didn’t want to eat either one of them.

These Brawny Produce Protector Reusable Bags worked. I think a week is the max they should be utilized … for bananas anyway. I haven’t … Continue reading

My version of bibimbap (“hot pot”)

When I worked in South San Francisco there was a restaurant my co-workers and I frequented, Mom’s Tofu House. It was good and cheap (service isn’t great).

We nicknamed it hot pot, as the food we ordered came in a hot pot (really a hot stone pot).

I decided to recreate my favorite dish, tofu bibimbap. (Bibimbap is pronounced BEE-beem-bop.)

I found a recipe online that seemed pretty close to what I used to order and experimented.

According to the Food Network recipe page bibimbap is one of the most popular dishes in Korean cuisine, bibimbap is a nutritious rice dish of steamed rice and pre-cooked vegetables (usually spinach, bean sprouts, carrots, mushrooms, and lettuce) and egg. It can also contain ground beef but can be ordered without meat. Dolsot bibimbap is the same dish served in a hot stone pot (the pot is pre-heated in oven) to make the rice on the bottom crunchy and to keep the dish hot for a longer time.

The recipe appeared to have a lot involved with its list of ingredients.

I altered some of the recipe for myself. I didn’t use sesame seeds or make the Gochuchang Paste. There were probably … Continue reading

Spicy cooking

Most weeks I try to explore at least one “new” recipe.

I was looking at Hungry Girl’s website and found spicy Thai-style no-cook stir-fry.

It sounded yummy so I decided to give it a try.

I added the ingredients I didn’t already have to my grocery list. I decided to add a few other ingredients to it as well.

When I got home I realized I forgot to write a few things down.

I modified the recipe a bit and had it for lunch three times last week. Yup, I thought it was really yummy. I really enjoyed it. It’s filling and fairly healthy.

The HG version is fine. I just made some adjustments because of what I had on hand.

I didn’t buy broccoli coleslaw and decided to add rice to make it more substantial. As I was grabbing veggies out of the fridge I realized I did have some broccoli coleslaw. So that got thrown in as well. HG’s version is cold and mine is hot.

Here’s my spicy Thai-style stir fry:

Getting grateful this month

Wow, we are now entering November. Can you believe how quickly this year has gone by?

Since it is November (and Halloween has passed) it means we are thrown into the holiday season.

I love the holidays.

But there is also a part of me that is glad when the holidays are over. This time can be so stressful and overwhelming.

And then there are all the temptations of overeating, so much sugar, lots of alcohol, parties, potlucks, etc.

At the beginning of this year I started a the jar project challenge for myself and shared it with all of you.

I did OK with adding slips of paper in the jar until sometime in April. Though I sometimes felt like I was playing catch up.

I went on vacation and never picked it up again.

We should be grateful all year around of what we have (instead of focusing on what we don’t).

But since it is November and the month most of us celebrate Thanksgiving, let’s do the jar project for the month of November as part of the GFG! Monthly Challenge.

Throughout the month let’s plan to fill the mason jar (or whatever you use) with little pieces of paper … Continue reading

Experimenting in the kitchen

As I have mentioned in the past since my FUNemployment began I have a long to do list of things, including getting healthy.

And one of the many ways I am working on getting back to healthy (and hopefully lose a few pounds in the process) is by experimenting with recipes and cooking.

I will be out of town next week and the amount of blogging (and cooking for sure) will be minimal if at all.

So I thought this week I would share three recipes I have been experimenting with lately.

My friend and GFG! reader who suggested the Recipes tab told me about a soup she easily makes in the blender.

Recipe 1:

I experimented with her idea and came up with this:

  • 3 medium raw tomatoes
  • garlic
  • 1/4 onion
  • jalapeño
  • fresh basil

Throw all the ingredients into a blender. Apparently some blenders, such as the Vitamix, have a heat function. My Ninja doesn’t. If your blender has the heat function you can blend and warm your soup at the same time. I had to pour my cold soup into a pot and heat up. I guess you could also put in the microwave.

The soup was … Continue reading

Say no to processed foods, yes to glutes

OK, it’s Labor Day and the first day of September, which means it is time for a new Monthly Challenge.

August’s Monthly Challenge was about slowing down. How did that go? I think it a great practice to continue in life moving forward.

OK, onto September’s challenges …

Nutrition: We all know that processed foods, which typically come in a can or box, aren’t great for you. They have lots of ingredients we can’t pronounce.

We are all busy in life and know that sometimes opening a can or box and throwing dinner in the microwave is easy.

We all probably can’t commit to completely eliminating processed foods for the whole month. So maybe for one meal a day, or once a week or just once this month. Try to replace it with something fresh, like fruits and or vegetables.

Exercise: The other day in a yoga class I taught we did some exercises for the glutes.  So I decided to make that the exercise challenge for this month. When you exercise try to dedicate some time to your glutes every time.

If you need more direction then just me telling you to do some exercises, how about each … Continue reading

Keeping calm, simple for Monthly Challenge

I asked my readers for ideas for the November Monthly Challenge. I got a lot of great ideas and used them.

I saved one idea for Go Fit Girl’s December Monthly Challenge.

We’ll get to that shortly.

December is a tough month for me and for many others as well. We are so busy with the end of the year at work, with the holidays, travel, extra tasks, multiple parties, certain expectations, many pressures.

Be kind to yourself this month. Let’s not forget the post I wrote in August titled, Do you want to be happy? Make sure to take care of yourself during this hectic, stressful over the top time.

Exercise: Exercise of any kind is important all year round. But it is really important when under stress. Try to exercise at least three times a week, but more is better. Go for a walk, catch a yoga class, take Zumba. Whatever you like to do do it. Make sure to make time for yourself. You can do as little as 15 minutes. It doesn’t have to be a full exercise regime to alter your mood.

Nutrition: We can probably guarantee any diet or healthy way of eating we … Continue reading

Fall Back

Oh, time change, how I dislike you very, very, very much. (Hate is a strong word.)

Many of my readers are from Arizona, so this doesn’t apply to you as much. But I think the suggestions I am going to make are great whenever you cross time zones.

One of my family members once asked me if an hour really made a difference. Believe it or not, but it is a huge difference for me.

When you Spring Forward, you lose an hour. The light is different. It is more difficult to get to bed on time for your workweek. And if you have things to do on Sunday mornings like I do you are already running late when you wake up.

When you Fall Back, you gain an hour. But really, I gain nothing. On Sundays I normally roll out of bed around 7. So that means I am up by 6. Yippee! I am pretty much off the whole day and sometimes into the week. My body has to try to go to bed an hour earlier on Sunday night. Which these days is not much of a problem. I am normally exhausted around 8. On school nights … Continue reading