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Lazy eggplant

Since I’ve been staying pretty busy during the week with social and exercise commitments, I have been using a lot of “convenience” foods so that I can still eat healthy foods that I love but not have to spend time in the kitchen that I just don’t have right now.

Eggplant is one of my favorite foods and unfortunately, I haven’t had the time or patience to make an eggplant dish from scratch in quite a while. But fortunately, I found this little product at Fresh Market and it is amazing!

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When I picked this up, I totally expected it to have egg in it since it’s breaded, but after reading the ingredients and noticing the little “Vegan” with a checkmark note on the bottom right corner, I knew this was sold!

It’s kind of weird though that they have a picture of cheese melting on it. Oh well, I guess it could be Daiya 😉

It cooks really quickly too. I heated up two slices in a pan on the stove, 1-2 minutes on each side. The box says to use oil but I just use cooking spray.

One serving of this delicious, cripsy eggplant is only 100 calories! And it’s delicious!

Pan frying makes it nice and crispy and since I don’t normally eat breaded eggplant it was quite a treat. There are five servings per container for this box, which was around $4. Not too bad!

What healthy “convenience” foods do you have on hand?

Holy falafel!

Hey guys, hope this finds you enjoying a nice relaxing Sunday! The weather here is amazing, I think some time outside later is definitely in order 😉

So after I last left you, I took a glorious 2 hour nap and then got ready for my girl’s night out. Before I left, I snacked on some popcorn because I was so hungry. It held me well since we didn’t have dinner until after 9:00!

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This was on sale buy one get one free at Fresh Market and I just couldn’t pass that up. It didn’t even taste like popcorn out of the bag, it was delicious and fresh!

Dinner at Ramsi’s was good too. I always enjoy a night out with the girls. We were going to do something afterwards but we ended up talking so much that we left the restaurant at 11:30! But it was so worth it.

We started off with some foccacia (italian flatbread spiked with herbs and EVOO, topped with feta and parmesan cheese tomatoes and pesto)…sorry for the blurry cell phone pics. Camera batteries died!

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I had two and a half pieces of this and then for my main order, I got the sloppy falafel. I almost ordered a side salad but I’m glad I didn’t because this was a lot of food!

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The falafel is homemade and is stuffed into two pita halves with hummus (on the bottom) and topped with tomato-cucumber relish. On the side were fried potatoes and vegan cucumber yogurt sauce. So except for the foccacia, I had a vegan meal!

I liked this a lot, it was a bit spicy which surprised me for some reason. I picked the relish off the second half (didn’t care much for it) and didn’t quite finish it, but almost. I ate most of the potatoes but not all. Basically when I started to feel stuffed I stopped eating 🙂

I have to say though…as a falafel connoisseur, I honestly think while this was very good, I prefer Shiraz. See a good pic of that on this post.

Have a great day everyone!

Eggs-cellent

Somewhere along the way on my drive home, I got to thinking about dinner. I stopped at Fresh Market to get some yogurt because I haven’t had any in forever (like a week!) and I wanted to have some tomorrow most definitely, no exceptions!

I got to explain to a lady shopping there the benefits of Greek yogurt (she saw me pick it up and asked me about it) which made my day. She left with a container of strawberry and blueberry Chobani 😉 I left with plain and vanilla Chobani, plus a new Stonyfield that I can’t wait to try later.

Anyway, while I was there I saw orange juice, which made me think of breakfast, which made me think of eggs and I decided eggs, toast and orange juice would be great for dinner tonight!

My inner critic, voice, what have you, kept telling me no, I need to have a sweet potato with some beans and maybe another vegetable, but why? I’ve had plenty of veggies today, from my green smoothie this morning to my falafel burger, veggies and hummus at lunch. So I finally shut her up and went for it!

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I topped my eggs (two, scrambled) with some shredded Mexican cheese and organic ketchup (which is the way to go to avoid HFCS) and my toast with some butter and grape fruit spread (whole fruit, not jelly). I had a cup of orange juice fortified with calcium 🙂

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It was delicious and I’m so glad I honored my cravings and didn’t go by what I thought I had to eat for dinner. I’m very happy right now. My only dilemma…what’s for dessert? I will just have to see where the mood takes me.

I’m on Day 3 with no ice cream and sadly (?) I don’t really miss it. That just goes to show you, I was in a rut.

Off to play Guitar Hero Metallica with Josh. Have a good night everyone!

Happy Birthday Jenna!

The Fresh Market

For some reason, I always forget that I have a Fresh Market store near me. In fact, it is so close, that I could walk there (its somewhere between 1-2 miles away). Hmm…

On Thursday, I had a little time to kill before I met my friend for dinner. And since I am a self-professed foodie now, I spend most of my free time walking around grocery stores or the grocery section of stores like Target and Walmart!

I thought of Fresh Market because I hadn’t been there in a while and I’d heard they had Barney Butter, which is huge on the blogs these days. My parents go there every so often because they have pre-made foods like stuffed chicken breasts and chopped veggies, that are easy to throw in the oven or on the grill and include the directions!

I had avoided it because I had this impression in my mind that it was more expensive than Whole Foods or the other places I shopped. I was so wrong! At least with most of the products anyway. Some things there were more, but not by much.

Here’s what I walked out with:

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I had remembered reading about Ryvita crackers on another blog and wouldn’t you know…this whole box was only $1.83! Cheaper than my normal Wasa. I’m excited to try these!

And, oh my gosh, I found The Bee’s Knees from Peanut Butter & Co! I have wanted to try this one for a while after hearing a good testimony from a friend of mine. You can find this one at my Whole Foods but its $5.99; this baby from Fresh Market was $4.49, woo hoo! Let’s hope it is what it claims to be 😉

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What’s this?! Honest Foods products?! Whoa…I still haven’t located the granola planks I’ve been searching for forever, but I did pick up these two whole grain country squares in Cran Lemon Zest and Apple Ginger Spice. While I’m really excited about these, there was a blank spot where Choco-Peanut Butter ones used to be 😦 Hopefully they’ll get restocked! These were $2.29 each, which is a big high, but I’ve wanted to try them for a while so we’ll see if its worth it!

And lastly, I’ve been craving hot cocoa at night and haven’t sat down to do some research on the healthiest kind yet (which I would want to be free of most artificial sweeteners and partially hydrogenated fats, which most boxed mixes have one or both) and I stumbled onto this little packet:

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Ghirardelli Double chocolate hot cocoa powder…just needs to be mixed with 6 ounces (or 3/4 cup) of milk and you’re set. It does contain some funky ingredients, but not partially hydrogenated, aspartame or sucralose, which are my big no-nos to myself. So I’ll give it a try!

I grazed through the milk and yogurt aisle and what did my eyes see?! My beloved Fage and CHOBANI! I have found Chobani at Meijer but it was only the peach and blueberry. Fresh Market was fully stocked with all flavors, so I will be going back to get some plain and vanilla, yes 🙂 Their yogurt selection is pretty reasonable, about the same price-wise as Whole Foods, except Fage is about 10 cents more there.

I’m just glad because this place is actually more convenient to me than Whole Foods so I will be coming here to get my yogurt stash from now on I think.

Well, I hope you all enjoyed seeing my shopping experience, I sure enjoyed being there and I will definitely be going back soon! What a great excuse to get out for a walk and vice-versa.

Stay tuned for a mini-marathon recap coming soon…