Part III will come soon. I have lots of jars!

Saturday night certainly turned out well. We went with a couple who lives in our building to the village to see some artsy shows and all felt like we were in college again and we ended on a sweet note. Vinieros. Not sure if you've heard of it, but it's a legendary pastry shop in NYC. We didn't even share. We each got a humongous slice of cake apiece and tried each others. None of the slices were entirely finished but I'm proud to say that I chose exactly what I wanted AND it turned out to be light and wonderful, as opposed to heavy...and wonderful. Still though, that was a LOT of cake, late at night.

Interestingly, when I woke up, the scale didn't seem to take too much notice of the previous night's excess. So off we went to another picnic breakfast. The picnic blanket ALREADY needs a bath and it's not even June! Then off to hot yoga, a bit of a walk and a sticky trip to a bar later to watch the Yankee game. Wings? Waffle Fries? Beer? Yes, yes yes. This morning, the scale finally caught up. Sigh, I was doing pretty pretty well! Actually, I'll be honest, I only had 3 wings, a handful of waffle fries and really filled up on TONS of veggies. But those wings were SO salty, I legitimately feel like a huge bag of water sloshing around from all the retention. Between the two of us, Boyfriend and I drank like 2 gallons of water when we got home!

Advice: If you want to slim down super-fast and noticeably (though maybe temporarily), cut out as much salt from your diet as possible. You'll definitely see a difference.

Not that all this has stopped me from having a very full breakfast (in anticipation of a looong run in the gym). Seeing how I really don't like to exercise, you'd think I'd at least attempt to eat less. Nope. Guess my love of food trumps my dislike of exercise.

A quick note about exercise: I don't like goal-oriented exercise. Give me a hike, skiing, any sort of organized sport or social exercise and suddenly I'm Ms. Fitness. I was actually SUPPOSED to go on a hike today but between others ovesleeping and the weather being hot/humid/ex-rainy, I decided to simply bum around NYC.

But before I start my day, here's the recipe for today. Actually it's a redo of a previous post, but a bit more detailed. I have others on the backburner, but I figure everyone's out and about, I might as well not post the new stuff yet!

Baba Ganoush-Take II (with pictures)

First, cut of ends of one large eggplant (though I would recommend doing this with two small ones, they are better tasting) and slice in half.

Place on casserole dish with about 1/2 inch of water on the bottom (or an inch, whatever) and liberally salt and pepper both halves.

Bake at 375 degrees for about 40 mins to an hour, or until a knife easily pieces from one end to the other.

Then the much less fun part. You have to scrape the insides out of the eggplant =(

I always do it when it's hot (in the interest of time, since I cook at night and get sleepy!) so there's sometimes an ouch factor. Still, this isn't as fun as scraping the spaghetti squash.

Then, assemble the ingredients:

1 cup Greek Yogurt (Fage o% is my fave)
1 lemon (zest and juice) + 1 tbsp lemon juice
2 cloves garlic (grated)
Salt, pepper, cumin and paprika to taste (start with liberal helpings of each)

Note: the eggplant is in the clear bowl (second from the right) and what you see in the middle is my FOOD SCALE! This has been magical for me.  $20 so well spent.


All the ingredients just go together in the blender or food processor bowl.

The grossness of this picture is very sad, because it depreciates the tastiness of the final product. Oh well, there it all is. In the bowl of my food processor.

Check this out: this is my food processor. It's actually a hybrid food processor and immersion blender. I've been in conversation with Serenity who reads my blog (yay!) and who uses her immersion blender to make creamy soups (without cream) and mashed potatoes. This sounds perfect for me but I feel like if I stick this thing into a pot and turn it on, everything will go flying and make SUCH a mess. But she's converting me, day by day and I think that with today's plans turning out to be such a mess and full of errands and the gym, making a nice cool soup might be just what I want. I'm considering a gazpacho vs. a squash soup.

Oops, got side tracked.

Here's what I got from the big eggplant and 1 cup of yogurt.

Calories? Eggplant was 500 gm when it went in the oven, 370 gm after being stripped of it's skin and having given up a lot of it's water. I decided to stick with the higher weight so it's about 130-150 cals. The 1 cup yogurt was another 130 cals and I'm thinking that if I was generous with the eggplant, I can just consider the garlic/lemon juice to add only another 20 cals or so. That makes this entire 2 cup jar + about another 6oz (.75 cups) excess baba ganoush to be 300 cals. So....for 1/4 cup (or 4 tbsp) that's about 30 cals. Compare with 90 cals for 2 tbsp of regular Sabra brand Baba Ganoush and I think that the less creamy texture is totally worth it. The taste is pretty similar. If the creaminess is really important, add another bit of yogurt, or just use plain yogurt instead of Greek. This was made on Thursday night, the jar is still almost half full and I've been snacking on it for a while!

Mmmm....volume eating is wonderful.

Slather the stuff on 4 of these for a great 100 calorie snack.

That's all for me today. Still to come: sesame-panko crusted tilapia (those this isn't news since I am crusting EVERYTHING with panko/sesame lately), corn muffins with bacon (also healthy!) and "not quite creamy" mushrooms and rice. And hopefully, should the immersion blender finally stop scaring me, soup!

Wow, summer just EXPLODED in NYC this week! Too bad I would cooped up at work way too long all week. But now I'm out and I've been cooking! Well more accurately, I'm just going to continue on from the last post, when I had teasers. =)

Too bad I didn't take a picture of today though. We took such a lovely 4 mile run (short, but sweet) in central park and then picnicked with a couple that I know and their dog. Our picnic was wonderful, one bottle of white wine, one nice fresh bread boule, some goat/brie cheese hybrid, LOADS of fresh fruits and veggies. Yum. Still though, summer outdoor picnics are my biggest obsession so you'll be seeing that soon I'm sure. Today looks like it's turning into an alcohol-heavy day. A friend will be coming over for a beer imminently. So I'd better work fast!

So I went out and found a bunch of really cute glass jars at a dollar store (yes, I shop at dollar stores!) so I bought three medium ones and two giant ones. Obviously, I need to find or cook things to fill them with. First up:
Cranberry Jam

1 12 oz package of Ocean Spray frozen cranberries
1 cup water
1 tbsp sugar
3 packets sweetener

I added a cinnamon stick, for fun =)

Bring the water (with the sugar and sweetener) to a boil

Then drop in the cranberries and turn the heat down to a simmer. I was impatient and started to pop them with the back of a spoon handle, but I *THINK* they will do this by themselves anyway.

Keep simmering for up to 10 minutes.

Careful, it splatters!!!

And will turn things like wooden forks and other porous things bright red!

At the end, it gets kind of jammy, like this.
Mmmm.....spoon licking was great.

Then you have to be REALLY patient and let it cool, though I would seriously recommend letting it cool in a glass jar container. Much faster.

After cooling it develops a very jelly-like consistency.

NOTE: I like it tart, but some people would probably be better off with another tsp sugar.

Also, it goes best on top of some fat-free vanilla yogurt, so that provides sweetness too. Plus it looks really pretty.

Last note: the skins DO remain in the mix so if that freaks you out (they can be chewy), strain the jam after use.

A few words on the volume factor.

Here are 2 same-size tupperware containers.

The one on the left contains 167 calories of spiced/baked chickpeas (also coming soon).

The one on the right, about 40 calories of cranberry jam/spread/sauce.

That morning I used the sauce on 1) a smart bagel 2) in the vanilla yogurt (as above) and 3) just ate some with a spoon.

The chickpeas were gone in 25 minutes (though they were very satisfying and probably worth the 170 cals from the protein/fiber etc that they provide)

The website wont let me put up pictures. I'm assuming this is temporary, but if you do read this, I'm sorry I will be back. I do have recipes!
Well, work has been kicking my butt for the past few days, and yesterday I finally got back into the kitchen (in a big way! Stay tuned!) but then didn't have the energy or the time to blog. My priorities have always been pretty simple: life, work, extracurriculars. Life=family, culture, exercise. Extracurriculars=cooking, blogging, hobbies. So...blogging had to take a raincheck. But I'm back! With goodies.

On Wednesday, I got out of work at 5, went to do some errands, shopping, gymming and was home by 7:30. Dinner was served by 8:15 and by 9:45 (leisurely dinner!) I was back in the kitchen. I was in bed by 11 and had accomplished 1) baked chick peas 2) cranberry jam/sauce 3) most of a 2 1/4 cup portion of baba ganoush (garlicky).  So you see, you CAN fit everything in!

I'm going to space out my posts and will begin today with watermelon salad. I will also take this time to discuss how I keep myself to the portion and serving sizes dictated on packages (for calorie control, of course).
It was really the first day that it was really warm outside, so watermelon seemed to make sense. Also though, I was in the mood to keep it light and this is the perfect way. I will give you the heads up, this isn't Boyfriend approved, but I stand by it. I think it's delicious, but I suppose it's not for everyone.

Grilled for 2 (or 3 since I had some for lunch too!)

I also decided to make it pretty this time for blogging purposes. If you're making it for serving purposes, you can do this too.

2) place some watermelon on the bottom. On further reflection, it would have been better to have cut this into bite sized pieces live I've done before!

3) Pile on some spinach, 1.5 servings FFFC-fat free feta cheese (50 cals) and a few more pieces of watermelon.

More on portion sizing of the FFFC later.

4) Choose your toppings. I chose a handful of a soynut/berry/pumpkin seed mix and some cherry balsamic vinegar (~100 cals)

Word to the wise: the watermelon lets out lots-o-juice. Instead of the nuts/berries I should have gone with some sort of bread product to soak up the liquid (crumbled saltines have worked before, but I bet croutons would be better. Crumbled Wheat thins?)

In no time you have a very pretty looking salad (see above!) for almost no calories! (200 for the whole bowl?)

Now, lets talk portion sizes. I've noticed that a lot of PERISHABLE things come in multiple portions and if you're not part of a big family this can be problematic.'s how I dealt with the sausages I bought yesterday. For a buy-2-get-$$-off deal, I got two packages like this (one sweet, one hot)

Even if I tupperwared this whole thing, I would be liable to eat more than one serving since it's THERE. come the ziplock baggies!

Two 150 cal sausages/ziplock baggie ensure that I never make more than 2 unless it's neccessary, thus saving me the hassle of leftovers and the pressure of eating!

(Yes, the sweet sausages get an S drawn on their baggie the hot sausages get an H)

But not all food is so easily separable.

Take one of my most handy kitchen staples: FFFC. 8 portions per container, this isn't easy to figure out.

So, I separate. The top half has 4 portions, the bottom right has 2, and the bottom left is a 1.5 portion sized morsel that I used for my salad.

To be honest, making sure I keep myself to one portion has been one of the most instrumental things in my weight loss over the past two years. I have found that I am STILL surprised by how small the "recommended" serving size is for common things. And how often I exceed that portion. So if you feel like you get into trouble with this, take a look at the quantities of things you are eating. You might be in for a surprise too. On top of all this, determine which things are "more bang for the calorie buck" so to speak. Fat free yogurt and vegetables are so far the things I've found provide most volume for the least intense caloric punch.

Ok, here's your teaser: I expect to have some free time this weekend. I will discuss the homemade baba ganoush (I know, it's a re-do but sooooo good), how nice tupperware can help, panko-crusted tilapia and baked chickpea snacks.

P.S. I made dinner for my dad tonight, it was wonderful, though I definitely went way over on the calories (2/2 wine).

Tomorrows another early day. Sigh.

Started off well with a yummy smoothie (though not satisfying...will discuss when I'm in a better mood) and deteriorated as the work I had today kept piling up beyond any possible means to finish it. Worked (standing) for 12 hours, then took a break to have a beer with my friends at Pub Trivia. Now I'm home, it's midnight, I had a snack (in addition to the beers) and am going to sleep all without even seeing Boyfriend today. Also, no exercise, no cooking. Bah.

Talk to you tomorrow when I'm less cranky and exhausted.
<3 Dr. Jules
As I've said, I'm really looking forward to rolling back all the damage I've one all weekend with too much food and too much alcohol. Honestly, it's not fair that weeks and weeks of staying healthy can all be totally demolished in just 3 or 4 splurge days, but what can I do? Nothing. I'm not even weighting myself for a bit under the assumption that things aren't going to look good and I just need to be nice to my body for a week or two (1 or 2 splurge days per week/NOT in a row!).
I really wish there was a way to avoid consuming so much alcohol in NYC. Yes, I can hold a non-alcoholic beverage to give me the "feeling" of drinking, but I've acquired a taste for good beer and good wine. Shame on me. ;-) In fact, now that we've finished all of our Wolaver's Coffee Stout beers, we invested in a Rogue Chocolate Stout. I guess with summer upon us, I'll be looking for more IPAs and Belgian Wheats to stock the fridge.

As a quick FYI, my mom's art show was this past Sunday and I'm really proud of her. A lot of people came out to see her work and everyone was suitably impressed. My big mistake was that I didn't set goals for myself like I've done in these things in the past and way overdid it and felt awful. I even went to hot yoga a few hours later and just barely survived.

Tomorrow my friends and I are going to try and get together for Pub Trivia, so I can assume I will have at least one beer there. Hopefully my  body wont be too upset with me.

Now, as promised, The Chronicles of Leftover Salmon.

Salmon Oatmeal Pancakes (taste much better than they sound, promise!)

Ok, I'm pretty sure these are my own invention so I will have to vouch for them if someone tries them and isn't pleased.
This is a double portion recipe, or a his and hers if you will. Really easy to split in half OR just save one pancake for the next day.

1/3 cup egg whites (1 serving)
1/3 cup oats (Old Fashioned)
Leftover poached salmon (use smoked salmon or any kind of cooked salmon here)
1.5 tbsp (eyeball this) fat free cream cheese
1/2 tsp baking powder
Salt/pepper to taste

Things to consider adding: scallions, garlic, dill? I didn't have these on hand but if you do, give this a try.

First, break up the salmon into fine little pieces. I took forever to do this because I didn't want to dirty any more than 1 bowl, 1 pan so I did it right in the tupperware.

Mixing all ingredients gives you something like this. It aint pretty, though the colors look nicer in person.

Don't worry if it looks a little runny, it'll get solid on the pan!

Get a pan nice and warm and spray it down with Pam.

Grab half (or divide portion into 4 small cakes) and pour on the pan. It wont solidify immediately but if you agitate the pan and the cake moves, it's probably a good time to think about flipping.

Here's what it looks like once it's flipped.

I did make myself a teensy little one first just to make sure that salmon pancakes weren't EXACTLY as gross as they sounded!


The End. The big one on top is his and the small one underneath is hers. In reality, he at his for "dinner" at midnight when he got home from work (sad face) and I ate mine the next morning with a drizzle of the Summer Sauce from the previous entry.

This whole recipe barely comes to 400 calories (depending on size of salmon leftover) meaning hers was less than 200. It DEFINITELY filled me up while still leaving room for a fruit/yogurt/both that satisfied my morning sweet tooth. On top of that, these babies have TONS of protein and omega-3 fatty acids (hello, salmon!) and fiber (oats!) so I call these a win.

Finally, lets discuss leftovers. As a non-native American, I tend to be a lot more lenient with my food. This means I allow leftovers to hang out for longer without worrying about spoilage and I don't hesitate to save things like this. These pancakes were gone less than 12 hours after they were made, but I also made them in the evening the night before I ate mine. I left it on the counter (not even refrigerator). So, the lesson is: don't scarf your food, it's not going bad as fast as you might think! Don't throw away either. It's only bad when it tastes/smells/looks DIFFERENT.

Thats not to say I never waste. I can't EVER use up all my herbs or scallions or celery before it turns bad. Celery is the worst culprit because I feel like even eating it plentifully doesn't allow me to finish just one package before it becomes limp.

Ok, I'm out of here. BTW, I don't know if I'll cook anything at all tomorrow but I do have a Doughy Overnight Smoothie sitting in the fridge, getting all mixed up and waiting for me to blend it tomorrow. Now that I've fine-tuned it, I will post pics etc! =)

Till tomorrow!
Have you ever drank so much and had such an awful hangover that you SWEAR you will never drink again? Well I'm having a FOODOVER! It's Sunday night and I've essentially gone on a weekend bender!

So much food, and alcohol. Delicious? Not even! Sigh. And I feel awful. I feel so bad for people who are always feeling like this after eating huge portion sizes of food that just sits in their bellies like a rock! We've all seen (and had!) that look. The I caaaannttt believe I ate the whoooolleee thing look. Bah.

I'm actually kind of excited to spend the whole week eating things that I make, knowing what's in my food and for gods sake, eating only until I'm full and then STOPPING! Ok, this wont be because of some magical self-control I've gained, but simply because I just wont have plates of hot wings and nachos sitting in front of me along with a beer!

Lots of great stuff to post though, I even have a teaser: Salmon Pancakes (NO these aren't gross) Or The Best Use of Leftovers Ever!

Now, for the main event!
His and Hers Again =) Can you tell which is mine?
After Thursday night's debauchery, all we wanted to do was have a relaxing evening at home on Friday and go to sleep early (we aren't losers, but this month we are on particularly taxing rotations!) So the goal was to make a meal that was 1) fast 2) easy on the grocery shopping 3) low maintenance and 4) had easy cleanup.

So, that morning I pulled two giant salmon filets (or whatever cut they were) out of our freezer and decided to poach them when I got home.

Poached salmon=no oil, no butter, barely any salt, one pot. Yes, this is the solution. Into a pot went one big chunk of peeled ginger (chopped), one small onion (chopped), a handful of peppercorns straight from the grinder, a nice bit of salt. Eyeball all of these ingredients because they're there for flavoring. Too much can't hurt.

I turned the heat on high, let the water boil for about 10 minutes to let the ginger and the onion flavor the bath. During this time I made my Summer Sauce (keep reading!).

After 10 minutes, I plopped both salmon pieces into the pot (shoulda used a bigger pot!) and turned the heat down to a simmer. I let the salmon bathe in the water for 9 minutes (too much! Do 7 if you try this!) and VOILA, a delicious salmon prepared in no time at all using one cutting board and one pot. Plus, no stinky baking salmon smell to deal with!

Now, the sauce. I don't have good quantities for this yet because I was kind of flying by the seat of my pants, but I'll give you the gist of it.

I originally got the idea from 5-Ingredient-Fix (click for original recipe). As you can see aside from the onions, I cooked the salmon the same way. Though I suppose poached is poached. However, her sauce calls for 1/2 cup sour cream or creme fraiche. Honestly, I don't like sour cream enough to deal with all the fat that comes with eating it and I didn't even have it in my fridge. I DID have Greek yogurt (0%) which I figured would work just as well. And did it ever! If you can imagine a sauce that tastes like summer, this would be it. So refreshing and light! I know I'm patting myself on the back here, but considering Boyfriend practically DROWNED his salmon in the sauce (and dunked bread and potato chips into it as a pre-dinner snack) I can assume it was a success.

Ingredients: About 1 or 3/4 cup Greek yogurt (this made a LOT of servings, though it's so good that I don't mind), two big handfuls of chopped fresh basil, zest and juice of one lime, salt, pepper, lemon seasoning, consider a touch of balsamic vinegar. It's so pretty and light green. It went really nicely with the pink salmon underneath.

I made the sauce while the poaching liquid was boiling and I made the Sesame Green Beans as a side dish while the salmon was cooking. I did wind up overcooking the salmon just a bit, but I wont blame the green beans!

Now, these are TJ's frozen green beans (the only brand I'll buy, I'm such a snob!) thrown into a high-sided non-stick pan. They don't normally need oil, just a little Pam. For this though, I used 1tsp of sesame oil (less than half a serving, probably more than enough). I sauteed them with the oil, salt, garlic powder, pepper, lemon pepper and then threw in a couple of tbsp of white sesame seeds (probably overdid it there too!). What I really wanted was to add some white wine or chicken stock and some soy sauce, but we didn't have it and we didn't want to go to the store to pick it up. So they could have been better, but there weren't any leftovers in sight after dinner either.

So here's the final roundup. I went to the gym after work, came back and began to cook this meal at around 7:30. We were sitting down to eat by 8:10 (I am not a speedy cook, and we had some beer and conversation during the process). Cleanup took about 15 minutes. The only leftovers were my half of salmon filet and less of the sauce than there should have been. The Blue Moon in the background is a lie. We split a Coffee Beer as an appetizer and never got to the Blue Moon, though I suspect it would have complimented the summer sauce nicely.

P.S. I also added more sauce later. The whole sauce was about 130 calories total (way less than most sauces). Of course, I had about 2 servings (calculated as 2tbsp like most sauce serving sizes), Boyfriend had about 4-5 and there was still 2-3 leftover for further use. I call this sauce 20 cals/serving TOPS. Or perhaps 40 cals/serving since there's no way to really eat just 2 tbsp of it!

P.P.S. I made an awesome breakfast with the leftovers from this meal. Will post tomorrow!

Congratulations, Boyfriend! You survived residency!
Ok, I'm not going to go into a lot of details, I'll just post a lot of pictures instead!

1) The dress looked good (though maybe not the pose!). I DID straighten my hair, and I DID regret it later as the weather stayed gloomy.


2) Everyone looked great, but especially my friend, Nurse, who looked smokin' hot in her white dress!

3) It's a little less than fair that I have to wear impossibly high heals to look like a person of normal height while Nurse got to wear more comfortable shoes.

And then things got silly!

Yes, there were more than just 4 people at this formal but I don't think others would appreciate their photographic internet debut here!

The End.

Food Recap: I did not eat cheese, chicken or eggplant. I did NOT hold myself to any other goal. I drank and ate apps, mains and desserts with abandon.

This was proved to me in the morning when I woke up feeling huge, headachy and not pleasant at all.

But I rallied with a full day of work, 5 miles at the gym and a delicious dinner for 2 at home: Poached Salmon with Basil/Lime Sauce and Sesame Green Beans.

Sorry, today is dodgeball playoffs and I have every intention of a long outdoor walk and a yummy lunch. Will post delicious dinner later tonight!

Hi Everyone, YES! I can say this now because I know people are actually reading. Hurrah!
Tonight is the big graduation formal with my little itty bitty dress. I think I way overdid it on food yesterday so if my dress doesn't look so wonderful I will probably not post pictures.

The getting-ready process will not be long since I've already got my nails did and the weather is AWFUL so there will be no straightening of the hair either. That just leaves the decision: to Spanx or not to Spanx. I haven't ever tried them, but have heard good things and will have just enough time to run out and grab a pair if I must.

Goals for the eveining: 3 alcoholic beverages (1 red wine, 1 white wine, 1 well drink), no cheese (THIS will be my biggest challenge), no chicken (it's always overdone at these things anyway), no pasta. I will have tastes of any and all seafoods and will try whatever red meat Boyfriend picks up. No eggplant (also because I don't appreciate catered eggplant). 2 pieces of dessert (or 3 if really mini like truffles). There will also be little apps floating around for cocktail hour and the same criteria will apply for these. Another goal: will try to photograph some stuff.

Ok, on to some cooking. Like I said in the previous post, I do a lot of cooking at once, so these were actually made a few days ago, along with the tofu.

I went out and bought a nice big spaghetti squash again!
Boyfriend did the heavy duty cutting.

Coring these things out is quite a pain and you have to do it with your hands so it can get messy. But worth it! Make sure to really scrape it down because you can really feel those fibers if you don't (lesson I learned from spaghetti squash adventure #1).


Into the oven these guys went, face down in a casserole dish in about 1 inch of water. 375 degrees, probably about 1 hour (I just went until I could easy put a knife through the outer rind.

Then the fun part! Making spaghetti! I am all about combing these guys and making little hairstyles.

I need better lighting...or a camera flash =(

Note: I didn't bother seasoning it this time, no olive oil, no salt, nothing. So obviously, it comes out tasting much like nothing. There's a LOT of it, good for about 3 lunches and 3 snacks =)

My favorite seasoning: 1) curry+cayenne = super spicy! 2) seafood seasoning + dash of salt 3) BBQ sauce 4) a little vinegar and parmesan cheese. I've heard tomato sauce works too! Probably whatever goes on pasta can just as easily go on these.

Natural light....does a picture good.
Next up: FALAFEL! No, I do NOT make my own falafel, are you crazy? But I do make it my own way. Many years ago, I picked up a box of Caravan Falafel Mix for a shabbat dinenr and peeked at the nutritional info. 100 calories/serving dry, 220 prepared. Whaaaat??? Oh, I see, it's because you have to fry them in oil. But lo and behold, on the side of a box, a tiny tiny blurb: For baking, follow all steps but bake at 375 for 20 minutes, turning once. All the "steps" were adding water and waiting 10 minutes. THIS was a recipe for me.

It's not pretty, but it's definitely tasty!
Yes, I know this is complicated. Add water (1.25 cups or whatever your package tells you), wait 8-10 minutes and make into little patties. I always wind up with about 12 (so 2.5 patties per 100 calorie serving). Here's what the mix looks like.

Pop them onto a Pammed cookie sheet and into the oven for 10-15 mins. Flip. Return to oven. Take them out another 10 minutes later and serve or refrigerate! This is the easiest thing ever. Are they as tasty as the fried ones? Is anything baked as tasty as fried? No. But they are still really yummy and healthy.

The falafel and the squash get combined to form this: A 1/4 of a wrap (60 cals for the whole thing, not too shabby) topped with a bit of spinach, a bit of spaghetti squash and then a broken up 1/2 falafel piece. Obviously I repeat this 3 more times to finish up my 2 falafel balls and wrap. This is a nice leisurely lunch and doesn't even need high-salt mustard or any other condiment. I eat a nice 1/2 cup of my granola for dessert and/or an apple. Totally sets me up for the rest of the day.

Note: I frequently feel like food that takes a long time to eat (or when I take a long time to eat food) is much more satisfying. If I finish my lunch in only 30 minutes, I feel like that's 30 minutes of (frequently unsuccessful) avoidance of a snack. So something like this that takes some time to prepare and to eat is pretty useful in my book. Does anyone else have this issue?

Well I'm off to get ready for drinking, eating and dancing. Somehow I feel that this is all out of order. Shouldn't it be eating, drinking then dancing?
On a separate note, my friend The Nurse will also be attending as a date and this is wonderful because it will give me something to do while Boyfriend schmoozes. Also luckily for me, I went to medical school with half of these people so I wont be totally bored and alone!

I hope you've made it to the bottom of this post, even though it was SUPER long. That's BECAUSE I have one final announcement/recipe. Whether it was the begrudgingly purchased chia seeds, or the fat free vanilla yogurt, or just getting rid of the stupid wheat germ, my doughy smoothie finally tasted good. For 300 calories (a little high but it's super filling and takes a while to eat!) it looks just like the beautiful other less tasty ones, BUT tastes yummy.

1/3 cup oats
1/2 cup fat free vanilla yogurt
1/2 cup chocolate almond milk (unsweetened, 45 cals/cup thing)
1ish (maybe less?) cup frozen blueberries (or any berries!), unthawed
1 tbsp chia seeds
A little drizzle of Walden Farms calorie free chocolate
Toss all of this together into a blender overnight and refrigerate. In the morning, blend!

Works amazingly, and is nice and thick so you can eat it with a spoon in a bowl!

If you don't want to use the chemcially chocolate syrup (tastes good but I can see how it might be frightening), put in a tbsp of cocoa powder or some maple syrup/vanilla/agave syrup/honey/sugar/sweetener.

<3 Dr. Jules (new signoff, like? dislike?)

Things are still going fairly well here, looks like the kitchen fairy is back on my side!
A quick note about my blogging and cooking. As I've mentioned before, I'm a resident (doctor in training) at a very busy uptown hospital center. Though I have the luxury of living practically next door to the hospital, my hours aren't the best. I generally throw together dinners and spend most of my time cooking things for breakfast or lunch. I do this at about 9pm and on days when I have a 2 hour block after 9pm, I make 2 or 3 dishes. I rarely ever post more than 1 dish at a time though, and the reason for that is so that I can spread out my posts  and still have something to say about cooking when I've  barely set foot in the kitchen. So for those who are curious, I don't have the time or the desire to cook every day, or even close to it. Instead, for example, if I am making one thing that has to sit in the oven for 40 minutes, I take that time to make something else. That way, I don't sit around just "watching the bot boil" so to speak.

Ok, back to the post...

Two nights ago, Boyfriend ate half of a block of extra-firm tofu. Having no real plans for the second half, I decided to cut the second half of it into 4 (roughly 60 cals/slice) and throw it into a zip-lock baggie along with a drizzle of dark sesame oil and soy sauce.

I left it in the fridge overnight and got to it when I got home from the gym the next day.
I made the same mixture as I did for my panko-crusted tuna burgers (i.e. a few handfuls of panko crumbs and 2-3 tsp black sesame seeds) in a bowl and proceeded to dunk in the wet tofu.
Here's what they look like half-cooked (the ones on the right have been browned on one side, the ones on the left have just been added to the pan).

I sprayed a non-stick pan down with Pam and placed the crusted tofu down. Every couple of minutes, I turned the tofu until every side (except the base of the triangle) was a nice golden brown color.

I dunno why the crust didn't come out THAT well, but tasting them, I kind of feel like any more panko would have been too much.

They received rave reviews from Boyfriend, who is generally a staunch eater of animal-proteins.

I'd probably clock these in at about 100 cals/slice (60 for the tofu, 20 for the breadcrumbs, 20 for the oil/soy).

I did have a lot of oil left over in the baggie so I assume all of it didn't get into the tofu.

Future directions: cut into 8, not 4 because then the tofu will soak up more of the marinade (maybe?). Add the wasabi mustard to the marinade. Consider egg whites?

FYI, the first half of the tofu became a tofu-salsa salad. The tofu got a liberal sprinkling of seafood seasoning (why? because it was there) and got sauteed. Boyfriend added our favorite Dessert Pepper Corn and Black Bean Salsa. It was definitely somewhat tasty =)

Ok, now, on to a little personal stuff. I really want to wax poetic about salsa. The stuff is incredible. Vegetables, low calorie, spicy....what can't salsa do? Having tried almost everything that's common, I've learned that this El Paso Dessert Pepper stuff is the best. Specifically the corn and black bean variety that I use to 1) moisten turkey meat for turkey burgers/meatballs 2) spice up my omelets (or omelet muffins) and 3) as a good ol' condiment.

The black bean dip salsa can be substituted for hummus. I ate a few sticks of celery with it today and it really takes the edge off of hunger. The tomatillio salsa verde is great on fish and shrimp, especially in a taco context.

I honestly always have at least 2 and sometimes 3 salsas in my refrigerator. You really have to wait a long time for them to go bad and they're just a great investment.

Anyway, I'm going to actually post this tomorrow morning, though I also will be posting about my third go at a doughy smoothie (with chia seeds) as well as a huge prep day where in less than 2.5 hours I made falafel, spaghetti squash and the aforementioned smoothie. That's going to be breakfast + 2.5 lunches + snacks for BF.



    I'm a recent graduate from medical school and a pathology resident living in New York City. Like most girls living in the city, I've found that a lot of my social life revolves around the regular consumption of high-calorie food and alcoholic beverages. I've decided to start a blog about how I am trying to beat the bulge by eating and cooking defensively between social engagements and how even a busy girl can fit exercise into a busy life.

    All recipes are on Petitchef


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