How I finally got my Quiona right.

Since I started eating cleaner—I’ve had an affinity for quinoa. For me it’s just such a better carb option. But no matter what I tried I never ever could get the right consistency. I was relying on Birdseye and shelf stable microwave bags. It got expensive quickly—when I could find them.

So I decided to buy a rice cooker, not the giant one, the tiny little $12 on sale 3 cup Black & Decker one. I never make 9 cups of rice, I don’t need a giant rice cooker. First couple of times I tried mixing rice and quinoa, total fail. I didn’t account for the fact that they needed different cook times. Back to searching for the elusive steamer bags I went.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to try soaking and rinsing the quinoa before cooking it into the rice cooker. The first time it worked like a charm. The consistency is fluffy and it comes out perfectly. I soak the half cup with some dried seasoning the night before in water. I let it sit in the fridge. I make sure it gets a good rinsing, apparently that was my missing step all along. My tiny little rice cooker does the job. Then when the water is just about soaked in, I cut off some buttter add some more seasoning. Then I fluff it with the paddle and let it sit for a few minutes.

In the end I get the perfect balanced meal. Spinach and chicken with sun dried tomatoes, served over that perfect fluffy and seasoned quinoa. I know spinach combination works thanks to those Birdseye freezer bags.

Monday Musings

I was in one of those hippy dippy Pollyanna type modes at work all weekend.  Why?  Probably because I realize negative energy does carry over to the people around us. A smile reall can go a long way. At the same time someone that is in a toxic mood can bring down everyone around them.  My boss even remarked that sometimes I can diffuse a tense situation simply by being calm, collected, and smiling.

Then again, Starbucks is doing Cherry Mochas which have always been one of my favorite drinks. It could’ve been the sugar talking—even if I only do 2 pumps of cherry and 1 pump of mocha in my venti latte.   I might try to eat clean and low sugar, but somethings you need.

Why do I meal prep?

So this how I like to keep my food storage cabinet. I still remember Oprah saying she was possessive of her Tupperware the year Gladware was on the Favorite Things list. I don’t love bread, but I get that.

Why the obsession with the storage containers? Because I live for my meal prep day. It is so much easier to coook one set of work meals for the week, and not be running out for fast food everyday. When I know I have that healthy option done, I’m good to go.

For me it’s not necessarily about saving money, it’s about knowing what I’m eating. This girl is not afraid of the meal prep shortcuts. She’s about eating as clean as possible everyday. Shortcuts aren’t the enemy in finding the balance.

There’s always Trader Joe’s in the time of need.

Here we go. . .

Let’s start with my primary rules I’ve developed to keep the balance in my life. Took me forever to realize if everything isn’t balanced, I’ll never be happy.

  1. Don’t skip a Monday or the beginning of your week workout. It sets me up to be lazy the rest of the week. Though if my body needs sleep that wins out in end.
  2. Mess up on a meal, get over it and start fresh with your next one. People that eat perfect all the time are boring. Sometimes you just need a Wendy’s burger.
  3. Shortcuts are okay. I have the freezer full of Trader Joe’s veggies to back me up. If they can slice my fajita veggies for me, I’m perfectly fine with that.
  4. Time in the gym is the easy part, the rest of the hours is where life gets complicated.
  5. Life is short, eat the bacon.