Health

Summer Solstice Supper

This week was full of delicious and healthy food! As everyone knows the summer solstice was on Tuesday and I was lucky enough to be invited to a Solstice Super at the CSA we belong to in our town. Willow Pond Community Farm is a small farm with about 75 families that help to keep the lettuce growing and the tomatoes bug-free.

To celebrate the beginning of the summer growing season and nurture some community bonds the farm hosted a dinner where everyone brought a dish that incorporated some kind of local ingredient. My mom recently acquired a Pampered Chef deviled egg holder/tray (yes they really exist) so she decided this was the perfect opportunity to use it! We also get free local eggs from a few of her friends who have chickens(can you tell we live in Brentwood, NH yet?). We give them our newspapers and they give us fresh local eggs. It’s a pretty good deal.

Anyways, the supper couldn’t have taken place on a more beautiful day! As families wandered in with homemade dishes in hand, my mom and I sat salivating at the sight of all this delicious food. 

Doesn’t she look pretty? Finally it was time to eat and we filled out plates high with gourmet goodies and earthy salads! It was a foodie’s paradise. Everything tasted so fresh and flavorful because it was literally grown from the land we were sitting on with the hands of the people sitting across the table from us. 

I had some kale quiche, pesto and roasted veggie pasta, a cheddar and chive scone, a garden salad (literally), a deviled egg (of course), some rhubarb cake, homemade strawberry frozen yogurt and much more! I was surprisingly not that full walking back to the car, probably because everything was so fresh and healthy.

And our deviled eggs were the hit of the buffet table. We went home with an empty Pampered Chef deviled egg holder, happy bellies and a new sense of appreciation for the farm and the people in our community. 

We also went home with yet another giant bag of kale from our CSA produce share. Which we promptly turned into kale chips. This is the only way we know how to make it edible. We seriously have a kale problem in this house. It sits around for days until someone makes chips with it or throws it out.

So how do you make kale delectable? I know it’s super healthy and I want to like it. Will it ever be something I crave? Please help!

Health

Pizza and Cupcakes…all you really need.

Hello blogworld 🙂

I am back in action! Last weekend I finally found some time away from work and dance to explore some of the new restaurants and stores in downtown Portsmouth! That place has exploded in the past few months and there is so much to see and do all of a sudden.

Shawn and I had a hankering for pizza so we wandered over to the brand new Upper Crust of Portsmouth. I had been there before, but Shawn hadn’t so it was a new experience for him.

The space was a bit cramped, but we really liked the pizza tins hanging from the ceiling and everything was very clean. The manager was super nice, although it took a while to get our pizza. That was probably because we had a rediculous assortment of toppings as per usual. Once the pizza came out we were ravenous and the smell of melting mozarella and sizzling garlic was mouth-watering.


We ordered half a Gepetto’s Roasted Veggie which had red Sauce, mozzarella, herb roasted eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash and fresh basil and half a Pedro’s Steak & Gorgonzola Margherita which had marinated steak and gorgonzola cheese PLUS we added red peppers and onions to that half ALL on a whole wheat curst. Oh boy, tough to write and probably even tougher to make. I have to admit we are picky pizza eaters. We just really want it to be incredibly delicious. And this pizza did not dissapoint. It was amazing! The cheese was creamy, the veggies were fresh and the crust was perfect.

We basically rolled ourselves out of there, filled to the brim with pizza and wandered down the street to check out some of the other new stores.

Not suprisingly, we soon ended up at Portsmouth Baking Company for some dessert. I have to say, their sign alone made me want to come in. It’s bright blue and quite cheery! This place is apparently brand new also and was a bit overwhelming at first. It was just like walking into Willy Wonka’s factory! There is a trains that circles the whole dining room that brings samples from the glassed-in baking room upstairs down to the guests. How.awesome.is.that.

We were still incredibly full from the pizza so after a full 10 minutes of just staring at the luscious desserts and magical appeal of the whole place we ordered a Vanilla Cupcake with Chocolate Frosting to-go.


We told ourselves that we will be back ASAP because honestly PBC looks out-of-this-world. They also have lunch and dinner so we are planning to go back for one of those very soon. I can’t wait 🙂

All in all, it was a great afternoon out in downtown Portsmouth and we rolled ourselves home to enjoy an afternoon of….nothing :)…accompanied by Adam Sandler’s new movie Just Go With it, which happened to be quite hilarious!

I would definitely recommend these two new restaurants to Portsmouth go-ers…and the movie too.

Who knows where we’re going this weekend, but it better be delicious! What new restaurants have you gone to lately?

Have a great Saturday!

Health

The Real World…

Hello blogworld!

It has been a long few months since my last post, mostly due to the fact that I have been finishing up school and graduating! Yes its true, I am now living as a real person in the real world…kinda. What is real is that I will now be blogging here as the Social Media Coordinator for The Meat House so you can find me there!

Enjoy the almost-summer weather 🙂

Health

Trader Joe’s Road Trip

Hello! Happy Spring 🙂

The temps are estimated to climb near 70 degrees in New Hampshire today! The sun is shining, I’m on spring break, I just got a new used treadmill, everything is GREAT! OH AND I took a much needed road trip to Trader Joe’s on my way to pick up the treadmill. I had a gift card burning a giant hold in my pocket since Christmas! Unfortunately, there are no TJ’s in New Hampshire so its a trip to get myself to one every now and then, but it makes it that much more of a treat 🙂

So yesterday Shawn and I got quite a few items at the store:

TJ’s Fiberful dried fruit bars- so sweet yet so good for you.

TJ’s Whole Wheat Cinnamon Raisin English Muffins- amazzzzzing, why does no other brand make these whole wheat??

TJ’s Fleur de Sel Caramel Sauce– nuff said.

TJ’s Dark Chocolate Covered Pretzel Thins- addicting, half the bag was consumed on the way home with the boyfriend.

Racconto Whole Wheat Potato Gnocchi– hard to find, but so delicious!

I’m so excited to have these new natural treats in my kitchen 🙂

 

Oh and don’t get too jealous, my new used treadmill is from 1997.

I’m off to enjoy doing nothing for a few more days until the second half of my semester starts!!! Ahh!

-Katie

Health · Motivation

What I’m Loving Now

Hello there 🙂

I have been super busy the past few weeks with lots of school and rehearsals for dance company.

It is my final semester of college and I could not be more excited! I have final projects, case studies and power-points up the ying- yang, but I am still managing to fit in regular work-outs and some healthy eating.

Since I haven’t really had time to go out to dinner much with many hours of rehearsal on the weekends, I wanted to highlight a few healthy food products that I am absolutely loving lately.

1. Kashi Go Lean Blueberry Waffles– About a year ago they took them off the shelves and now they are back…NEW and IMPROVED! They now have 8 in a box, have less calories per serving and offer more fiber! What could be better? I love these in the morning topped with flax, cinnamon, blueberries and maple syrup.

2. Popcorn Indiana Dark Fudge and Chocolate Chip Kettle Corn– This stuff is seriously addicting, but suprisingly low in calories for the decadent taste. It is whole grain, all natural and great as a snack during Glee. 🙂

3. Cedar’s Yogurt Spinach Dip– I spread this on turkey sandwiches or use it as a dip. It is low calories because it is made with our friend greek yogurt! (60 caloreis per 2 Tbsp.)<–less than mayo!

Eating in isn’t so bad if you pick up a few interesting new ingredients! When you are eating healthy sometimes things tend to get boring, so splurging on an exciting item every now and then can kick it up a notch. We’ll see what grabs my attention next week at the grocery store…

P.S. Check out my new personal portfolio blog!

-Katie

Health · Motivation

Florida Sun and Good Eats

A few weeks ago I had the ultimate pleasure of venturing to Vero Beach, Florida with my boyfriend for 9 days. This was not just any vacation…it was in fact, Shawn’s FIRST time on an AIRPLANE, first time OUT of New England, and his first time at DISNEY!!! He was like a little boy on Christmas. We went from 9 degree weather to 85 degree weather in a matter of hours and it was amazing…

We explored Islands of Adventure, airboating, Animal Kingdom, toasted coconut ice cream, u-turns, and of course multiple delicious meals at some of Florida’s finest restaurants ;). Luckily, I was able to run on the beach most mornings to burn off some of those extra calories…oh what paradise we were in :).

One of my favorite places that we ate was inside of Islands of Adventure near the new Wizarding World of Harry Potter (which was amazing). It was called Mythos and is apparentlyvoted one of the best theme park restaurants in the world!

I had risotto with steak tips, asparagus, mushrooms and tomatoes which was of course incredibly delicious. Shawn had a barbeque chicken wrap that actually had mashed potatoes inside of it?! He said it was awesome.

The next great place we went to eat was a place called the Tiki Bar in Fort Pierce. It was right over the water with a thatched roof, live music and lots of energy! It was a bit overwhelming, but ended up being one of my favorite meals! I had a seafood salad sandwich on a croissant and sweet potatoe fries.

This was the night we discovered toasted coconut ice cream. You need to get it, it will amaze you. Sadly, we were too excited to take any pictures before diving into our cones ;).

The rest of our vacation was full of countless hours yelling at the GPS, fighting moskito storms on the highway and visiting many interesting creatures in their natural habitats such as…

The American Alligator, dolphins, the Great White Egret, an armadillo, a bobcat, bunnies, Ghost Crabs and many more.

Now comes my ultimate favorite restaurant from our trip. Maggiano’s Little Italy in Orlando surprised and delighted me by offering whole wheat pasta as a substitution option for all of their delicious pasta dinners! I ordered the Shrimp Scampi with tomatoes and brocolini. It was dangerously delicious. I literally had a garlic and butter sauce mustache by the end of it. We also had the stuffed mushrooms which were insanely addicting.

I swear I am wearing a different outfit…just the same jacket.

Overall, we both agreed that we probably gained about 20 pounds each eating out every day, but we hope we worked it off walking around the theme parks and chasing after armadillos on the side of the road…

The day after we landed in Boston the Northeast was hit with another great snowstorm. We squeezed our eyes tight and desperately tried to transport ourselves back to paradise, but reality won that fight. Back to school and work for us…but not without some healthy daydreaming every once in a while.

Health · Motivation · Recipes

The Best Pumpkin Muffins You Will Ever Eat

I am not kidding about this one. I have been making these muffins for about 4 years and everyone who tastes them (even my dad-the anti-health food eater) agrees that they are fantastic.

I created the recipe a while ago when I was in desperate need of something warm and spicy with my cup of hot cocoa as I snuggled on the couch during a January snow storm. So  I took bits and pieces of other recipes  and added my own quirks to come up with a healthy and delicious pumpkin masterpiece that will warm you from the inside out.

The Best Pumpkin Muffins!

2 eggs

1/2 cup sugar

1 Tbsp  vegetable oil

1 cup non-fat vanilla yogurt

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 can  pumpkin puree

1.5 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 Tbsp baking soda

1/4 Tbsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp cloves

1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

1/4 cup raisins (optional)

 

Beat eggs for a minute. Add in sugar, oil, yogurt, vanilla and pumpkin and mix until smooth. Combine the dry  ingredients in a separate bowl. Add this to the wet mixture and add in walnuts and raisins. Spoon into greased muffin tins and bake for 25-35 minutes on 350. Feel free to use golden raisins or pecans to mix it up a bit! Make hot cocoa. Cuddle up on couch in front of warm fire. Eat muffin. Be happy. 🙂

I’m hoping I’ll be snuggled up with this guy…

Have a great weekend! 🙂