Kind Bar

Mother’s Day Dinner Recap

Dinner tonight was perfect and I think my mom and grandma both were very happy! ­čÖé

The drive to Philly was uneventful – – I was sure I was going to hit tons of traffic since tomorrow is Mother’s Day, but somehow it was smooth sailing the whole way from DC to Philly. There were a few slow moving parts of the trip, especially around tolls, but I left just before 12 noon and made it by 2:30!

I brought some snacks to munch on in the car. (Don’t worry – these pictures were taken BEFORE my drive, not during.)

A few grapes.

Three mandarins.

And a KIND Bar – Almond & Apricot flavor. ┬áThis was SO good, I honestly can’t believe I went on so long without KIND Bars. I was always a little nervous about having a lot of calories in bars just because I feel like I could eat 3 and still not be full, but these are full of nuts and fruit, so they’re not only delicious, but filling too. Stay tuned because I’m going to be doing a reader giveaway for some of these KIND Bars next week!

After I made it to Philly, my sister and I got to work with cooking! We were lucky to have picked a bunch of dishes we could make beforehand and serve at room temp, so dinner time wasn’t stressful at all. After prepping a lot of the dishes for dinner, I was pretty hungry so I had a little bowl of leftover tomato soup

and some half sour pickles.

We took Wendy’s dog, Sadie, on a walk for about 30-45 minutes after that and it felt good to walk around. The day was gorgeous even though it was a little windy so it was so nice to be outside. My parents came around 5 and we set out some appetizers to munch on while we chatted and drank some wine.

Green olives, goat cheese (covered in ash, paprika, herbs, and plain), a goat cheese red pepper spread, and some sliced baguette and crackers. I munched on a little of everything and it was really good even though I’ve had a LOT of goat cheese today. But cheese and I are friends so I didn’t mind too much. ­čśë

For a first course (or second, depending on how you want to look at it ;)), we had Chilled Beet Soup.

My sister made this by adding a chopped onion, 1.5 pounds of beets, and 5 cups of water to a pot. She cooked it for 40 minutes, and then pureed it with a hand mixer. So simple, but it was INCREDIBLE. (Also,0 WW points for this soup!) We garnished it with some sour cream and fresh chives from her backyard.

The main course was…

Soft Shell┬áCrabs!! One of my absolute favorites but I hadn’t had them in soooo long. We just dipped these in egg wash and then a mixture of cornmeal and flour, and then cooked them in a pan with hot oil for about 2-3 minutes a side. They crisped up and were out of this world.

We had three side dishes to go with the crabs.

A Smoky Pasta Salad that I was in charge of. We just mixed smoked mozzarella, grape tomatoes, fresh basil, olive oil, salt and pepper into the cooked pasta. It was simple but delicious, especially if you like smoky flavors because the mozzarella really popped in this dish.

Roasted Corn and Wild Mushrooms with Arugula Flowers.

Watercress and Endive Salad with homemade vinaigrette.

Here’s my plate:

A softshell crab and some of each of the sides. Everything was delicious, and I was so happy to use those arugula flowers! They are so pretty but added that same peppery flavor you get from regular arugula. And the softshell crabs were just perfect. They’re one of my mom’s favorites too so she was a happy camper, too.

Then came dessert, which was amaaaaaaazing.

Doesn’t that look professional?? My sister and I made it FROM SCRATCH, though she deserves most of the credit. ┬áShe was in charge of the crust, and I made the custard filling, and then we topped it with fresh strawberries she picked up at the Farmer’s Market. My piece:

Ahhh it was so good and such an amazing way to end the meal. I don’t know the last time I had something made from scratch that I actually helped make so it tasted that much better! Dinner wrapped up around 8:30 so my parents went home and now I’m just watching a movie with my sis and her hubby.

I am exhauuuusted so will definitely be going to bed soon. I hope Saturday is treating you well, too!

Cookie and Candy Plate

I’m so sad that Saturday is over! Though I wasn’t feeling that fabulous for most of the day, it was nice to take it easy and enjoy the 90 degree day. I found a new place in my neighborhood for a mani/pedi and they did an awesome job. I was in there for 2.5 hours because the woman took such care. Towards the end I was definitely getting a little antsy to get out of there, but it was awesome. She gave me a really long leg and foot massage and a great hand/arm massage too. I ate a lot of snacks after the GM, starting with another Kind Bar.

This was the Fruit and Nut kind and was even better than the last one. It had a bunch of different kinds of nuts and dried fruit so every bite was a little different and it was soo good.

I also had a bagel thin toasted with ricotta (no cream cheese or butter in sight).

And then I had a small mug of cereal with one crushed Weetabix biscuit and the rest of the pumpkin flax granola from Whole Foods, with some almond milk.

Looking back, I probably should have had one thing a bit more substantial, but I was feeling pretty icky so I just went with what I felt like…

Then I got myself together and met my boyfriend at Chef Geoff Tysons tonight when he got off of work to get a bite at the bar. I decided to have a glass of Torrontes (JUST ONE)

It was good, but I didn’t even finish the glass. I got the mixed green salad with blue cheese crumbles and berry vinaigrette to start (dressing on the side).

Then I ordered the wild mushroom pizza that had fontina, taleggio, and grana padana (all types of cheese).

This pizza was soooo good. They have a special pizza oven in the restaurant to make all the pizzas, so the crusts get crispy and the toppings all melty. So, so good. I ate 2/3 of this pizza (4 small pieces) and brought the last two pieces home.

I was pretty full at this point, but we decided to get a dessert to share anyways, so I just nibbled on it. It was the Cookies and Candy plate, which is all handmade at the restaurant.

Clockwise from top left, caramel corn, chocolate dipped toffee, dolce de leche,┬ácinnamon┬ásugar cookie, an anise marshmallow, and chocolate covered almonds. I tried a bit of everything and it was incredible. Handmade candy is like nothing else! I laughed a little because its called “cookies and candy” but it came out with only one cookie. Turns out the kitchen ran out of cookies so they just gave us one, but I found it pretty funny because I have a strange sense of humor… ­čÖé

Off to bed… I am going to sleep well tonight!

Day Two

Hi! I just got back from Day 2 of Bikram in a row and it is amazing. Tonight was actually harder than last night! I think yesterday I was soooo scared going into it, so I was surprised that I could handle it and left feeling like a million bucks. Today, I felt like I knew what I was doing a bit more, so I went into it a little overconfident. Not like I thought I was going to be the best person in the class (at all), just completely confident I could handle it.

But, today I actually had more trouble staying in the room the whole time, even though yesterday I didn’t even think about leaving once. There were two things that made a difference in this. First, no one left during class today, so the door never opened to let any cool air in (which is how its supposed to be) but yesterday I got a few breezes which helped me stay cool. Second, I left my water bottle at the studio yesterday, so I just filled it with cold water today once I got it, rather than the ice I had it filled with yesterday. The bottle ended up getting a little warmer that I would have liked. Definitely bring ice water!!

I did sit in the front row today so I was in front of the mirror which was awesome because I was really able to watch my postures and make sure I was doing them right. There were a few postures I could go into deeper today than yesterday, and I felt a lot more comfortable with the sequence since I did it yesterday. I am definitely going to take tomorrow of, but am thinking about doing a week unlimited at a new studio next week and trying to go as many days as I can. The improvement from yesterday to today alone with my postures makes me excited to see the progress over more time. It’s pretty amazing watching your body transform and being able to do new things!

For a snack around 4:30p at work, I had a bowl of nonfat cottage cheese (~2/3 cup) with a chopped up pink lady apple.

Having the bigger lunch today definitely kept me full for longer than usual, so the day was almost done when I finally got around to having my snack. After work, I ventured over to the Farmer’s Market and bought some produce.

Baby kale, arugula, a bunch of cilantro, 4 fuji apples, and turnips. I got all of this for around $20 which I felt like was a good deal! I was going to skip the kale this week, but the sign said its their last week for spring kale, so I had to pick up one last batch of it. If anyone has good kale ideas for me, please let me know! I’m definitely going to make kale chips and I am sure more massaged kale salads are in my future. ­čÖé

After Bikram, I had an unpictured popsicle and I drank an orange G2 Gatorade during class, which I think helped me stay in the room! Once I got home, I wasn’t really that hungry, but I wanted to have something. Kind Bars sent me a few samples to try, so I tried the Almond and Cashew bar.

I had never had a Kind Bar before, though I’ve seen them in Starbucks, and this was DELICIOUS! It was chewy, but also crunchy because of the almonds and cashews in it. The nutrition facts are really good, too – 150 calories, 9g fat, 4g fiber, 4g protein and then a bunch of vitamins. The ingredient list is also pretty short: Dates, Almonds, Cashews, Honey, Glucose, Milled Flaxseed,┬áSoluble┬áDietary Fiber, and Natural Flavor. I have a few other flavors to try and am really looking forward to them!

I’m off to catch up on the DVR. See you tomorrow!