In the afternoons at work, a coworker and I get about an hour into hour shift and then start talking about food and simply cannot stop. For the past few weeks the hot topic of conversation has been hatch chiles, which I actually had never heard of until then. Her excitement, though, got me really excited. I took my boyfriend to Central Market on the first day of the Hatch Chile Festival and was so excited you would have thought I had actually tasted a hatch chile before.
Hatch chile toffee, hatch chile cornbread, hatch chile cookies, hatch chiles roasted, hatch chiles stuffed. Every kind of hatch chile everything. And we tried every free sample offered. Some twice. Or three times.
We settled on a hatch chile fajita night complete with non-hatch chile sangria (which we also tried!).
The chicken we bought pre-marinated. But the guacamole was homemade using hatch chile salsa - avocados, salsa, fresh cilantro, and some of Andrew’s secret ingredients.
I also accidentally added a whole bottle of rum to the sangria, so with slightly less I think it would have turned out tastier. (Not that I’m complaining about our result)
We picked up some Two Buck Chuck which I think is the best sangria base since it’s, ya know,
two three bucks. And added apple, peach, and lime, and raspberries.
You can never go wrong with fajita night, at least in my book.
So if anyone hasn’t gone yet, go to Hatch Chile Festival! Or go try some hatch chiles!! I’ve been eating them with my eggs too in the morning - delicious!
banana brown sugar & cinnamon steel cut oats
Changing it up because they’re steel cut oats instead of rolled - which retain more fiber and protein because they’re not steamed and rolled out.
A friend was telling me that your brain only has the capacity to make a certain amount of decisions during the day before getting “tired.” So the less decisions you make in the morning about what you’re going to eat, what you’re going to wear, how you’re going to do your hair, etc., the better. I guess you can consider my brain primed for the entire day because I haven’t made a decision about food in about a month. Oatmeal it is and always will be.
What made me think that avoiding blogging (/all responsibilities) would make me feel better and less anxious about my lack of doing anything productive in the world? Waking up is hard to do when your job starts at 2:30 in the afternoon. Then again, this morning sleeplessness that creeps up on me at about 5 every morning would beg to differ. So I got up this time. And cleaned, and made coffee, and decided to blog.
The thing is, I have always insisted on two things for my blog: First, it would never control me. My blog is my blog is my blog. If I want to blog, that’s great, if I don’t, I will let out my creative genius elsewhere. I don’t blog for readers, just me. Which brings me to number two. My life shouldn’t revolve around my blog. Although things happen to be much cleaner and my refrigerator is stocked much better when it does… I always figured that if something in my life is worth blogging, super. If not, there’s always tomorrow/next week/next year.
But now I’m sitting here on the couch, happily, at 7 in the morning wondering to myself why not blogging is ever an option. I put my camera away, I avoided the blogosphere, etc etc. and my enthusiasm level looked pretty much like my blog stats on the right side of my screen.
So I am just going to blog and not be embarrassed that I’ve had the diet of a five-year-old lately. And I’m not going to pretend I didn’t just walk gingerly into my room with a brimming cup of latte just to snap that photo and then make the just as dangerous return to the couch to write this post about posting.
baked peaches + cinnamon + vanilla almond milk + little bit of brown sugar
I was craving peach cobbler because a mommy blog on pinterest spammed my home page with gorgeous desserts… not complaining… it just made me really crave buttery gooey yummy cobbler. so i made this.
The sole mission going to the grocery store this past Saturday afternoon was to gather as many Greek and/or Mediterranean staples as fast as I could before being lured into purchasing all the specialty items that are all too appealing to a shopper whose stomach started rumbling 30 seconds after she left for the market.
I managed to escape with minimal damage to my bank account. I consider my $15 Malbec an investment in my wine education - with it’s origin of a stony terroir and proclamations of deep cherry and black currant…
I got all the things I needed to eat Greek for about five days, or maybe a week if I water down the tzatziki a little lot.
To prep for the week, I chopped up cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and red onion, added a small squeeze of lemon juice, tossed and refrigerated to use for Greek salads.
Central market has an excellent array of Mediterranean side dishes in its to-go section, so surely I could replicate at least one of those with ease. Couscous with spinach and feta. Cook couscous, add spinach while warm, toss in some feta while cool. Refrigerate. Meh.
What did turn out fabulously was the tzatziki sauce, with a little help from Ina Garten.
1 container Fage plain nonfat Greek yogurt + 1/2 cucumber, grated + juice from 1/2 lemon
Cut cucumber in half, then cut lengthwise to scoop out the seeds. Grate one half, wrap in paper towel, and gently squeeze out excess water. Mix all ingredients in a bowl, cover, and refrigerate to allow the flavors to come together.
What I love about the Mediterranean diet, other than getting to play up my nostalgia for days spent traveling through southern Italy and Greece, is that I am always satisfied. Plenty of lean meats, fresh fruit and vegetables, protein-packed Greek yogurt. This is most likely a base description, but I’m happy, my wine glass is happy, my kitchen is happy, and due to my habit of playing Italian opera loudly when I cook, my neighbors most likely are not too happy.
The “fiesta” part is probably not very pc of me.. but it was basically a party in a bowl, so I will stand by my title.
** I later added more salsa because I used a kale mix and it needed a little extra something to hide the.. kaleness. to be perfectly honest
I have been complaining about being alone this weekend because everyone is out of town (and by everyone, I mean by roommate and my boyfriend). But really, it has been nice to have nothing to do except cook and workout and then blog about it. I guess it’s just weird not having homework to avoid - it’s making procrastinating less enjoyable since, well, it’s no longer procrastinating. You win, universe. You win.
But I won with this bowl. Because it’s awesome.
Thank goodness I already received my diploma. Based on this post it would be difficult to convince anyone I actually received a college degree.