Tag Archives: doctor who

Comfort cooking for that SUPER healthy friend

20 Jun

Ever had a friend who follows strict nutritional guidelines, eg. eating certain grams of protein and carbs and certain times of the day and what not? Well, my best friend (also a dancer) has been out of commission with injury for almost a year now, and in order to stay in shape and healthy came up with a diet plan with a nutrition specialist that worked for her. I’m so proud of her, she looks amazing and is healthier than I’ve ever seen her, but my god, it makes it hard to cook for her! I try to be healthy but I a lot that she normally wouldn’t. Now to be fair, she’s normally good about eating what she’s given but I feel bad serving something I know she doesn’t really want to eat. At the same time, I can’t serve just salad for dinner, and I’m not great at fancy meats. I’m also a comfort food craver (if you haven’t noticed). It’s basically all I eat. Yesterday though, I found the answer.

Sweet potato fries.

They are possibly the greatest thing ever. They’re like regular fries. But better. SO MUCH BETTER. They have more flavor. More nutritional benefits. I’ve never been more excited about a food. How excited, you ask? This excited.

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Click the picture for the pure joy that is Karen Gillan and Matt Smith doing a happy dance. Do it.

I barely have anything to write.

Ingredients: (this is enough for about 2 people, sweet potatoes are huge so 1 potato per person probably measures out pretty well, but can you believe a serving of 2 sweet potatoes is only 89 calories! awesome.)

2 sweet potatoes

1 glug of oil

Sprinkling of garlic salt

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven at 220 degrees Celsius.

2. Wash and dry the sweet potatoes but don’t peel them.

3. Cut them into about 1/2 in circles and then slice them into fingers.

Pro tip 1: So I have no upper body strength (the ultimate irish dancer problem) and thus struggled to cut a sweet potato in the aforementioned fashion… don’t judge me. Anyways, for those of you who know how real the struggle is, it might be easier to cut lengthwise down the potato and create slices from there. They might look a little less fry like but who actually cares?

4. Throw the slices into a zip lock bag, drizzles in the oil and sprinkle the garlic salt. Shake well until all the fries are covered in a good coating. If it’s not enough just add more.

5. Spread the fries out on a pan and place in oven, cooking for 30-35 minutes. Check once around 20 minutes to flip the fries.

It’s that easy. We made these with BBQ chicken and coleslaw, all absurdly easy and yummy. I strongly recommend.

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Beautiful Blogger Award

6 Mar

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Today, I was truly flattered to receive the Beautiful Blogger Award from Cassandra, over at her name was Cassandra. If you haven’t been over to this girls blog, go right now! She posts every day about the weird and wonderful and everything in between, and never fails to provide snark, insight, or just a damn good laugh. I honestly cannot recommend her blog enough, it’s my favorite to read whenever I come online every day.

Now, onto this award. Apparently I have to nominate 15 people and tell you 7 things about me. I’m going to nominate 5 people..because I can, and because this would never ever get posted if I tried to nominate 15 people.

Nominations:

1. No Excuses Health: Jo Jo and Stacey write about healthy nutrition and fitness making it accessible to everyone- such a great blog and resource for anyone interested in fitness and nutrition!

2. Ethan Eats: Ethan has a great blog about the stuff that he cooks and bakes, and he understands the struggles of eating real food in college. Great read, great blog!

3. How About Them Apples: Adam and Nadine de-clutter scientific nonsense to give you the facts about healthy nutrition- definitely worth checking them out, they post a lot of really useful information.

4. Hungry and Fit: They describe themselves as a young couple focused on great workouts and feasting well– all on a great budget. It’s everything I pretend to do while I’m really sitting here blogging. But seriously, good stuff.

5. Jewels on a Journey : Julia is an incredibly strong and wonderful individual, as shown in her blog. She writes about life, including being a wife, dancer, student, and everything in between. A really great blog 🙂

Ok. 7 things about me.

1. I fell out of my high chair and smashed my head against a huge glass window when I was a baby. I was fine, luckily, and my loving parents were more concerned about the window anyway. Either way, it probably explains a lot about why I’m so utterly insane now.

2. Irish dancing is a huge part of my life- I love it and I do consider myself a dancer. HOWEVER- don’t mistake that to mean that I am capable of any kind of dancing other than Irish dancing. Whenever I’m in a situation that calls for normal dancing, people expect me to know what to do. False. Unless it involves moving my feet in quick rhythms or pouncing around with leaps and turns, I’m hopeless. And don’t even get me started on dancing with arms.

3. I am an absolute nut job when it comes to sport. I’m a pretty normal person in regular life. I’m not overly confrontational, and I pretty much keep to myself. I’m a completely different person when I’m watching (or even talking about) hockey. I am overly passionate for my team and I will NOT back down in an argument. If you insult my team, expect to see my crazies. It happens. There is very little in this world I love more than hockey, and I am 100% ok with expressing this publicly. (Like the public meltdown I almost had at the coffee shop at school when I discovered our star goalie is quite possibly out for the rest of the season. Shit just about hit the fan.)

4. I’m a snob about English accents. I can’t help this one. I grew up in England, just outside of London. Surrey, to be precise. If you’ve ever been there, you know the accent. If you haven’t… well I sounded something like Hermione Granger as a kid. Anyways, I happen to be of the opinion that this is one of the best English accents and that any accent from Birmingham upwards shouldn’t be allowed (with the exception of Christopher Eccleston- I love him too much to hate his accent). Otherwise, nope. Gotta go. If you have an accent that falls into that category, I apologize deeply. I don’t mean to offend you I just really don’t like that accent. I’m sure you’re all lovely people.

5. I have synesthesia. Every note in my mind has a color associated with it. Occasionally, I’ll get really confused and say something like “that bottle is D” instead of “that bottle is blue”, and my mind won’t register anything wrong with the sentence. It normally takes a table full of people with a look of concern on their face for me to realize I’ve mixed it up again.

6. I love Doctor Who. More than words can describe. If you read my blog you probably already know this because just about every post has some kind of Doctor Who reference. It’s an obsession though. Like, I’m trying to work my way through this really dense book on the Tudors right now for a class, and the only way I could make myself read it was to have the voice in my head reading speak in David Tennant’s voice. Worked like a charm. Henry VII is much more interesting when The Doctor is teaching you about him. Also, I am emotionally vulnerable because of this show. I’ve cried watching it WAY more than I’m proud of.

7. I drink tea like a normal person drinks water. Partly because I’m Irish and I think tea actually just runs in my blood. But honest to god, I inhale that stuff. I don’t function in the morning without tea. It’s almost 9 pm and I’ve only had 3 cups of tea today. I need to catch up! I’m also extraordinarily picky about my tea. If it’s not Barry’s Tea, I won’t drink it. No exceptions.

And there you have it. You now know the extent of my insanity, and are probably thinking “wow this girl is a shit show waiting to happen” and you’re right. I’m  a functional lunatic, and I’m ok with that.

 

The Mother Of All Breakfasts

24 Feb

This should also be called the mother of all hangover cures. Seriously. I’m a very big breakfast fan anyways. I would actually eat it for every meal if I could. I try not to keep cereal in my apartment because I go through about a full size box in a day or two. The only issue I have with this breakfast is having to make it hungover. It’s great once you’re eating it but my god, actually having to cook it sucks. But I did it! Friday was dedicated to recovering from Thursday night, which I did…eventually, with the help of this to die for Irish breakfast. (Truth: I actually thought I was going to die several times Friday morning, I wish that metaphor had less truth.)

Ingredients: I’m going to leave off quantities because you can really cook however much of each one you want, they don’t affect each other.

TEA. Lots of it.

Bread

Bacon (If you’re going full on Irish, go for Irish rashers, but I realize they’re not available everywhere)

Sausages

Eggs

Beans (Not always part of the Irish breakfast… I just really like baked beans on toast)

Oil

* If you want to go full out, get some blood pudding. It’s a lot more delicious than it sounds, check it out here. I like it, I just don’t keep it in my apartment.

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Instructions:

1. Make a cup of tea and leave the tea bag in. Yeah, it’s that kind of a morning, I know.

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2. Pop a few pans on the stove, if you don’t have more then this might take a little longer as you’ll have to reuse it.

3. Start frying your bacon and sausages in oil. Sausages took me the longest so maybe cook bacon on medium and sausages on medium-high. It really depends on your stove.

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4. In a pan, pour in your beans onto low-medium heat. This can just sit there being stirred intermittently until everything else is ready

5. As each meat finishes (should be pinky and cooked through), transfer it to your plate

6. Crack your egg(s) in the pan and cook to desired egginess (I’ve decided I like that phrase. It’s gonna be a thing.. meaning over easy, over medium, over well etc.)

7. As everything is finishing up throw some toast in the toaster and serve with beans on top. Any other beans can be put onto the plate.

And that’s it. It takes a little while if you’re still trying to figure out your stove like I am, but the more you know about how quickly each meat will cook on your stove, the more efficient you can be with timing it out. It’s honest to god my favorite meal though. And you know what, all this talk of food is getting me really hungry. I’m gonna go cook my left over sausages and bacon, since I’m out of town for the next few days at a big dance competition.

I hope you enjoy this as much as I did!

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On my second slice of toast, the beans poured out in the shape of Ireland…roughly. It was very exciting. Shut up.

Pre-Stamina Day Carbo-Loading

5 Feb

Today, I may well go through hell on earth. As I’ve mentioned- I have 90 minutes of dance, break, then 2 and half hours more of dance. Add in the fact that I have a 3 mile walk in between and no ride next week, and that sounds bad enough. But oh, it gets worse. Several of us are competing in a little over a month, so our teacher has decided to work on our stamina until then. Our other teacher (the stricter and “I don’t care if you’re so exhausted that you’re about to pass out keep doing it perfectly” teacher) is coming back and our current teacher has warned us that tuesday will be a stamina day. If my powers of prediction are correct, I’m gonna go ahead and guess that every class in february will be stamina day. Shoot me.

The point of saying all of this is to a) warn you this may be my last post as I anticipate not being alive tomorrow and b) the more pertinent option, explain to you why I carbo loaded this weekend

In order to get through stamina day, I’m going to need all the energy I can get. To read more about how your body reaps energy from carbohydrates, click here! (I LOVE biochemistry and I had way too much on the subject to put it in this post). But my point is, carbohydrates (and lots of them) are not only great but necessary before a show or competition, or even a long rehearsal.

I was going to write out an eating game centered around a TV show (read: Doctor Who) – a manifestation of a drinking game but the goal being carbo-loading instead of getting wasted. Not as fun, but a more productive use of the hours I’m spending watching Doctor Who. The only problem is I got to the end of season 2 (of the newer series that began in 2005), where SPOILER ALERT Rose and the Doctor say goodbye and confess their love (or almost) and whatnot and I literally started bawling. I can’t even. I love Rose Tyler more than words can describe. I thought losing Christopher Eccleston was bad, but losing Billie Piper, and tearing apart Rose and the Doctor- man that broke me. I am actually so glad my flatmate went out tonight because she’d think I’m mental. All hysterical over a TV program. Either way, any plans of doing anything productive while watching that show have been derailed as I try and come to terms with the end of the era of Rose. Plus, right now the game would look something like “Eat a sandwich every time you cry”… and I would run out of bread.

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For the full heart breaking effect, click on it!

So- new plan! I’m going to present some of the best foods to eat while carbo-loading. But be warned- consumption of all of these in a short amount of time (what I’m doing) should only be done in the face of serious energy expenditure. Not your average workout. Just remember, if you’re eating it, you have to do enough exercise to work it off. (And likewise, you need to eat enough to fuel your work out, so plan accordingly).

1. Rice! Rice is great. It should be a staple in EVERYONE’S diet. I mean honestly what’s not to like. It has 45 g of carbohydrates per serving- 0 of which are from sugar, 205 calories- 4 of which are from fat, 0 g of fat- saturated and trans. Best part- it’s composition is 90% carbohydrate. Take a look at this make up:

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I mean it just doesn’t get better than that. All of the data I gave above was for 1 serving, but if you know me and my inability  to determine serving size, I ended up eating about 3-4 servings of rice over the weekend. Still not as much rice as I ate when I went to China for 3 weeks in the summer- literally it was all I ate when we went out to eat. Me being the fussy eater I am barely ate anything of the main meals (I’m sorry but I REFUSE to eat crunchy chicken, when by crunchy they mean talons and heads), so my god, when that rice dish came out at the end, I enjoyed it.

2. Pasta. Pasta has the ability to get quite fatty quite quickly if you’re generous with the butter or sauce, but if you are a person with refined tastes such as myself (and by refined I mine childish), then pasta is perfect just plain (hello alliteration!) When served plain, 1 serving provides almost 200 calories, and 39 g of carbohydrates, none of which come from sugars. The make up is pretty much the same as rice with a tad bit more fat and a tad less protein. Either way- GOOD STUFF. I’d be lying if lunch and dinner on two separate days this weekend weren’t simply big bowls of plain pasta.

3. Kellogg’s Rice Krispies. I’m a cereal gal. I could eat all day, every day. Every meal, every snack, give me cereal I’d be happy. With milk, without milk. Don’t care. I will ALWAYS welcome cereal.  Back when I was in a dorm and had a meal plan, if I didn’t feel like walking (all of 3 minutes) to the dining hall, it would be cereal for dinner. And if I didn’t have milk, it was generally cereal out of the box for dinner, because going to get milk was almost as much hassle as getting “real” food from the dining hall. ( Yeah, I know, I’m a lazy bum, I got that) Anyways I think you get my point. I never really considered it particularly nutritious, but believe it or not, rice krispies are full of carbohydrates. They boast a 91:2:7 carb:protein:fat percentage ratio, with each serving providing 128 calories, 28g of carbohydrates (3g from sugar), and almost 300mg of sodium. I specify sodium, because I don’t get close to enough sodium in my diet. I’m not a huge meat eater a lot of the time, and I only really use salt with fries (which I avoid), so I don’t come close to the recommended 2500 mg a day. I’d barely get that in a week!

4. Potatoes. Oh man, talk about superfoods. Potatoes are fantastic! Just fantastic. If you’ve noticed, they’re in most of my recipes for a reason. They’re a staple of my diet (and now it’s not hard to figure out where I’m from, I bet), and for good reason. They 93% carbohydrates with very low fat content. 1 serving provides about 260 calories, 60 g of carbohydrate, and a whopping 72 mg of sodium. Warning: this is quite a high sodium content, which can be dangerous who are getting sufficient amounts of sodium elsewhere in their diet. If you have significant sources of sodium elsewhere, just beware that potatoes are a big source. If you’re like me and not getting enough sodium, potatoes are just fantastic.

5. Grapes! These fruits are made up of almost entirely carbohydrates. Now- the downside to them is  that most of their carbohydrates come from sugar (they’re simple carbs) but they are a great source of vitamin C, and if you’re not eating any other sweets regularly, then you don’t really have anything to worry about.

Ok those are my top 5. I’m not a particularly sophisticated eater so these are kind of the basics, and the most you’ll see in my apartment. I don’t have a wide variety, but I eat a hell of a lot of what I have 🙂

Bangers and Beans Hot Pot

30 Jan

This recipe is so straight forward and easy- it’s the quintessential “tastes amazing but takes no work” meal. Seriously. I was sitting watching Doctor Who and gabbing with my flat mate for 90% of the time I was cooking this meal. It’s that easy.

Ingredients:

I small can of baked beans

2-3 potatoes

3-4 pork sausages

1 glug of oil

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 190 degreed C

2. Wash, peel, and quarter the potatoes. Pop them in a saucepan, and let them sit at boiling for around 8 minutes. Take them out before they get too soft.

3. Pour oil in the frying pan and throw in your sausages cut into portions about an inch in length. Cook them until browned.

4. Put the sausages into an oven-safe bowl and pour the beans on top

5. Once the potatoes are taken off the heat, drain out the water and put them on the frying pan with a dash more oil for a few minutes.

6. Add the potatoes tothe sausages and beans.

7. Cook for ~25 minutes. Take out when cooked and enjoy!

Um yeah, it’s really that easy. 4 ingredients. Straightforward stuff. Great source of protein and carbs with minimal fat! Dig in!

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And now for something completely different (props if you got that reference):

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Because Christopher Eccleston makes me happy.

^ Ok that was supposed to move on the page.. it’s not working for me and I’m not particularly formatting-savvy, so if it’s not moving like a proper gif, go ahead and click on it for the full effect. I promise it’s worth it  😉

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