Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Simple Oil and Vinegar Coleslaw

More coleslaw... ever notice how a recipe says one head of cabbage, but when you start chopping it up you realize the amount you need will only be a quarter or half of your super large cabbage? I can only remember one or two times I saw a small, possibly baby head sized cabbage at the grocery store/farmer's market. Normally they are huge, which I don't mind, but after using my cabbage for the Thai coleslaw, a frittata, and some chopped up on salads, I still had a ton left.

Time for more coleslaw! Luckily I love coleslaw, but only the kind without mayonnaise. I will only eat mayonnaise if it is undetectable.

Making coleslaw like this always reminds me of my Grandma, who served it as the salad at probably every dinner we had at her house. I think she eats lettuce now, which is shocking. It was probably something to do with being born right when the Great Depression hit. Like I said in my previous coleslaw post, cabbage is cheap. I doubt my Grandma used white balsamic vinegar, but we have a large bottle begging to be used more often.

It seems like Grandma's have an innate ability to chop cabbage really thinly for coleslaw. Must have been all of those years before food processors. I have trouble figuring out how to slice it and what to do with the chunky middle part. I usually get down to that part and chop it into oblivion.

Anyway, cabbage is really good for you, so make this!

Vinegar and Oil Coleslaw

Half a large head of cabbage, shredded/sliced/diced
3 tablespoons of white balsamic vinegar (or white, red wine, rice vinegar, whatever you have)
1.5 tablespoons oil
salt and pepper

Toss together in a large bowl, chill and enjoy!

I know another reason my Grandma probably liked coleslaw... its an excuse to put salt on your salad!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Thai Coleslaw

Aaron and I went to Chicago over the weekend and had a great time seeing my friends from college, going to the beach, and going out a lot. When we got home I was happy to get back into my salads for lunch diet!

I made this really delicious coleslaw for lunch this week (cabbage was on sale at Whole Foods).

It is a Thai coleslaw, but I didn't make it spicy, although the recipe called for red pepper flakes I left them out.

I found the recipe on Kayln's Kitchen. Check it out, a lot of our favorite recipes have come from her website!

These are the main ingredients:
4 cups shredded cabbage
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1/2 cup diced mint
1/2 cup diced cilantro
1/3 to 1/2 cup chopped peanuts

Dressing (whisk together):
1 tbs Fish sauce (don't be scared, this dressing is fabulous)
2 tsps Honey (well the original recipe calls for Stevia but I had honey)
1.5 tbs Lime Juice

Mix the cabbage with the dressing first and let it sit while you chop up the other ingredients, then mix it all together and top your serving with some extra chopped peanuts.

This coleslaw tastes way better than I thought it would, especially after I nervously added the tablespoon of stinky fish sauce to the dressing. It was worth buying the out of season mint and I will definitely be making this again soon.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Saturday Protests: a year later

Just in case you were worried that people aren't protesting in Wisconsin anymore, you should stop worrying! They are!

There was a pretty big crowd on Saturday walking around the Capitol. Most of the people were listening to a speaker when Aaron and I walked by, except for this guy:

Then we were treated to some anti-Walker bagpipes in the bar we had stopped at for a snack:

FYI: Bagpipes are really loud when they are 2 feet away from you.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Life in a Day

Since Aaron and I don't have cable, or even a digital t.v. to pick up local channels, we rely on the internet for our entertainment. This often means watching t.v. shows a day after they air when they are posted online. The commercials are minimal compared to real t.v., which I prefer because commercials drive me crazy!

We also subscribe to Netflix for watching movies. We only have the dvd delivery service, because they recently started charging extra for instant movies on your computer and we felt like it wasn't worth the money (not all movies are available and sometimes the streaming quality is bad).

What I love about Netflix is how it gets me to watch movies I never would have found before, from documentaries on John Lennon to a crazy funny movie about getting into private kindergarten in New York. It also suggested the movie we watched last night, called "Life in a Day." The movie was compiled from 4,500 hours of video from around the world, all shot on July 24th, 2010 (a Saturday).

Aaron and I both enjoyed it, even though he put off watching it for a week because he thought it sounded boring. So, highly recommended as an interesting and beautiful snapshot of life.

Here is a clip from the documentary: A Day at a Time featuring Ellie Goulding

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Raw Breakfast Pudding

Well, its still early in the morning here and its time to start studying for my "Advanced Statistical Methods" mid-term exam that takes place later today. But then I looked at our syllabus and noticed the exam is only worth 15% of our grade, less than some participation points in most classes and barely enough to make a difference unless I fail (which I won't, because this is heavy on review from last semester). So all in all I have time to share my delicious breakfast with you.

I know I have mentioned that I am redoing the elimination diet, but I didn't mention that I also have been eating a high raw food diet during the week. I started it as a little experiment in January and found it really easy to stick too. However, my raw breakfast options have so far just been green smoothies. While they are delicious, I miss using a spoon sometimes, so chia pudding comes to the rescue.

Chia seeds are little and black seeds that are high in fiber and can be used as a thickener or to make pudding. They also contain protein and healthy fats, so a good way to start your day. They're great for you and not that expensive, so if you can find a bag, try this recipe. You can also add them to smoothies, cereal, etc.

I can't remember where I found the idea for this recipe. Chia puddings are all over the place and I didn't save the link for the inspiration for this one.

I made a triple recipe so I could have it for three days, but I have to say after sitting in the fridge the avocado flavor is a little stronger. I still like it but you might be better off sticking to a one day serving, so I cut the recipe down to serve two people for breakfast (or dessert or a snack).

Place the following in a food processor and blend:

  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 tablespoons chia seeds
  • a handful of spinach
  • drizzle of maple syrup or honey, to taste

When its all mixed together and smooth, scoop out into two bowls and top with whatever you want (oats, nuts, fresh fruit, et).

Yesterday I had the blueberries and almonds picture above. Today I topped my serving with walnuts and dipped cucumber slices in the pudding. I find this breakfast to be extremely filling and it keeps me full for a while! Try it!

Now time to study for real.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The post where I brag.

I'm in the midst of studying for my statistics and macroeconomics mid-terms that are coming up this week, so this will be quick.

I got two pieces of good news this week that I wanted to share. Aaron is really proud of me even though in my opinion I put in very limited effort for these things:

1. I will be getting a project assistantship for next year! It was possible, but not guaranteed until this week, so I'm really happy. That means no more loans and no paying out of state tuition. It also means grad school was basically free for me (ok I have to work a little bit, but it will be research experience which is relevant and good). I won't find out who I'm working with or the project until the summer.

2. A few weeks ago I took the Foreign Service Officer Test, which is the first step to working at the State Department. This week I found out I passed it and am moving onto the next round (writing 6 essays). While I am definitely interested, I'm not positive that this would be the right career for me. I took the test to see what it was like and I didn't study, so my investment was minimal. Still, there is some pride that comes with passing tests and knowing I didn't spend that Saturday morning at a testing center for no reason.

Yay me. Now let me enjoy these successes as a distraction from the looming torture of my mid-terms.....