Sunday, November 3, 2013

Goodbye Truvia, Hello Coconut Sugar

Ah, Sunday morning. I love Sunday mornings every week because they're usually slow and relaxed, but today is extra relaxing because I have the whole house to myself for a few hours. After a family breakfast of egg & cheese sandwiches on Ezekiel bread, Matt left for soccer practice and Riker got picked up by his grandmom to head out for the morning. It's just me, a cup of coffee and my Food Network shows. And a little shopping as soon as the stores open.

It's been a few days since I had a chance to post, so for a quick catch-up, here's what's been going on around here.

Our little pumpkin scored himself a mountain of candy, which we've all been snacking on the last few days. I need that stuff to be gone soon.

He also scored some new Elmo slippers, which he refuses to take off when he's at home. Love that silly smile.

In addition to candy, we've also been gorging ourselves on freshly roasted pumpkin seeds, which I made after Riker and Matt carved pumpkins the other day. These are sooo much better than the ones in the store. I just tossed them with a bit of olive oil and some sea salt, then baked them at 325 for about 10 minutes. We literally stood at the stovetop eating the first batch hot off the pan as soon as it came out of the oven. So salty!

Friday night was a "free day" for dinner and of course no one felt like cooking, so we had a family night out at our local fave place, The Spot. I didn't snap a pic, but I had fish tacos and they were delish as always.

Saturday was a big day out for food shopping and errands, which of course started with meal planning. Here's what's on the docket for the next few weeks:

1. Herb Crusted Red Snapper (Old Standby - a Weight Watchers recipe I make often in the winter)

2. Southwestern Salmon (Fun - a new WW recipe I haven't tried yet)

3. "Burgers & Fries" (No-Brainer - soy for me, grass-fed beef for the boys, and butternut squash "fries")

4. Penang Curry with Tofu and Pineapple (Fun - from my Eat Clean cookbook)

5. Broccoli "Cheddar" Soup with Paleo Biscuits (Fun - also from Eat Clean)

6. Lentil Vegetable Soup (Old Standby - need to start using the 5 pounds of lentils my mom gave me when I was home a few weeks ago)

7. Tandoori Tofu with Grilled Vegetables (Fun - from the Eat Clean cookbook)

8. Miso Salmon with Salad Greens (Fun - from the Eat Clean cookbook...can you tell I spent a lot of time flipping through that book when meal planning this week?)

9. Spaghetti Squash & "Meatballs" (No-Brainer - Soy crumbles for me)

10. Crustless Quiche with Kale (No-Brainer)

11. Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai (Fun - found it on Pinterest)

12. Spinach Lasagna (No-Brainer - in the freezer from when I made two of them last week)

I also have a few other goodies stashed in the freezer for any crazy weeknights that come up.

I actually made the Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai last night, which was quite an involved process, but pretty fun to make and tasty to eat.

I love Pad Thai so was intrigued at the idea of using spaghetti squash - a favorite ingredient of mine - instead of rice noodles to cut down the carbs. I used this recipe and it turned out nicely, but both Matt and I agreed it needed more punch. We have leftovers for lunch today, so I'm going to make some more of the sauce and doctor it up a bit. We like things really flavorful around here.

During our grocery outing yesterday we stopped at a new Indian grocery store that opened up in Toms River, and Matt picked up two handmade samosas to have with dinner. They were crispy, spicy and delicious and went perfectly with our little Asian meal.

We spent the rest of the evening sitting out back by a fire. Such a perfect evening.

Once we all return back home around lunchtime today, all that's on the agenda is some laundry, football and baking. I picked up some fun new finds the other day and am itching to try out some energy bar/ball recipes with them.

Pecan butter? Say no more. And after reading the truth about sweeteners on Food Babe's blog, I've decided to ditch the Truvia that I used to rely on for baking and swap it out for coconut palm sugar, which is not processed and is all natural. I won't get into the deets here, but if you're a Truvia / stevia user, you should definitely check out what Food Babe has to say about it - very eye opening!

Enjoy your Sunday!

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