Tuesday, March 12, 2013

a product review, first grill of the season, and a new member of the family

first, a product review! i don't typically keep a whole lot of snack bars around for myself, because i figure i can save a little cash and get more filling nutrition out of just making a meal or snack. however, we are back in obedience classes with our puppies and since they're in the morning, we don't have a whole lot of time for a meal before we go, since i'm not okay with just eating a bowl of cereal for breakfast and can't stomach yogurt first thing. i really underestimate how convenient they are! sky can grab a clif bar, or something similar, but what's a gluten free girl to do? i went to our local health food/natural market and scoured the snack bar wall. (seriously, a whole wall). and came home with a handful to try. one i found was a Vega bar. i've had the vega protein powder before, and (while it still tastes like protein powder), i love the ingredient list. my gut loves the list too, since i have a terrible time breaking down proteins and nutrients, this is good stuff - everything is already down to its simplest chemical form so i can just absorb it. win.

i tried the chocolate decadence vibrancy bar today and was very pleasantly surprised by how delicious it is! it's chocolately without being too sweet, so i think it'll be easy to stomach first thing in the morning while driving to puppy class. it's soft but has some super nice crunch seeds and chopped almonds in there for a little texture. very nice! it kept the hunger away without being too filling, but still boasts 10 grams of complete protein and 40% daily recommended fiber per bar. the only downside for this bar is that it isn't cheap. it is around $2.50 per bar, which is definitely the high end of the snack bar spectrum. it isn't something i would be okay eating every day because of it's price point, but i think i will keep one in the car (emergency snack) and a couple in the pantry for before puppy class and other similar situations. there are a couple of other flavors, including berry blast and original, but i haven't tried those.

how about some eats!? well, it's just about grilling season around here so i am making the best of the ultra beautiful weather and cracking our little grill open. we get packages of frozen ground sirloin burgers from costco, and you just throw one on the grill (or skillet or oven) to cook frozen. they're inexpensive for a big ole bag, delicious, and convenient. i had one grilled with sharp cheddar for dinner the other night with frozen sweet potato waffle fries, spicy mayo (just mayo mixed with srirach and salt) and ketchup. hit.the.spot.
today, i had another one! this time i also grilled some asparagus which i had spritzed with olive oil and sprinkled with salt, pepper, and garlic powder. i had it all with pickled onions, ketchup, and creamy dill sauce. 

i love grilled asparagus! the dill sauce was a cinch to make. i just combined two tablespoons mayo, with one tablespoon fresh chopped dill, a quarter teaspoon Lawry's seasoned salt, and about two teaspoons apple cider vinegar. it was delicious. i imagine using yogurt instead of mayo would be great too! i didn't have any plain yogurt, or i think i would've given it a try that way. 

i also had this beauty recently:
a brown rice bowl with sauteed cabbage, leftover pork, fresh cilantro and basil, and pickled onions. i ate it with plenty of sambal oelek (crushed chili paste) and Dynasty brand hoisin sauce, which i recently discovered. i love hoisin, and didn't think i could ever find any gluten free. this brand fits the bill and is every bit as delicious as i remember!

y'all remember how i sold my olga mixer? well, her replacement came today. she's gorgeous!

this is a kitchenaid professional series 600 mixer, in tangerine. and it is 28 pounds and 6 quarts of lovely! i had thought about calling her Olga the Second, but my sweet husband and mother-in-law think she needs her own identity. and i think they are right! the other day, skyler said her name needed more syllables, because she is so much larger and more powerful than olga. my mother in law suggested Olive or Olivia to keep with the O-theme and pay homage to olga. i love the ideas! i think Olive is the one! what do you think?

i came across a delicious looking gluten free bread recipe with browsing just today, and i think that will be my first big project in Olive. check out this recipe, with those bread calisthenics. i have never seen more beautiful or flexible gluten free bread. find the recipe that i will be trying in the next couple of days at One Good Thing by Jillee.

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