28 February 2010


Sidney Crosby became the national hero of Canada in the most exciting hockey game in this Olympics. It's so fitting that the Canadian team wins gold at home.

25 February 2010


We got a puppy today! It's a Boston terrier girl named Kimchi. We got her today from Round Rock and she's super sweet!

Sleepy puppy:

Hanging out at home!
Cuddling in the car.

19 February 2010

flu sites

I have the death. And by "the death" I mean the flu, I think. I'm spending the day on the couch with hot tea and the Winter Olympics. It's been suggested that I drown my flu in Nyquil, but that's tantamount to going on a dextromethorphan+doxylamine succinate-induced vision quest. In celebration of my, um, anti-emetic victory, here are links to things I've been reading lately:

FoodWhirl - It's a really great, brand-spanking-new food blog with more than just an aggregate recipe+picture site, but also tips and stories written by actual people.

Giant oarfish filmed in Gulf of Mexico - harkening back to the days when we all wanted to be marine biologists.

Cthulhu Crochet and Cousins - While I don't knit or crochet (or even sew, really), this site is super cute and filled with adorable interpretations of the elder gods and other geektastic knitting projects. (thanks to Randi for finding this!)

16 February 2010

Men's Ice Hockey!

The winter Olympics are by far better than the summer Olympics. I could name the ways, but most importantly, it's men's ice hockey that sets it apart. Now don't get me wrong, women's ice hockey is interesting, but it's often crazy lopsided. Men's ice hockey is like taking the NHL, plucking the best players from the league, and geographically redistributing everyone. The winter Olympics is one of the few times I actually cheer for the likes of Chris Pronger. Obviously my allegiances are with Team Canada because Canada is hockey (it also doesn't hurt that Mike Babcock is the coach), but I wouldn't mind if Sweden took home the gold because they're basically the international unit of the Wings.

If you'd like to obsessively follow the games, the NBC Olympics site is surprisingly not horrible.

15 February 2010

Valenbirthday Eats

We celebrated my birthday and Valentine's Day yesterday by donating blood at the Blood Center of Central Texas. I highly recommend blood donation to anyone who is eligible. It only takes about an hour and it doesn't really hurt and you can save up to three lives with a single pint.

Shortly thereafter we made our way to Chinatown Mopac for some of their amazing dim sum. I had sort of forgotten that it was the lunar new year, but it was a yummy way of ringing it in! We got chicken and shiitake mushroom open steamed dumplings, lai wong bao, steamed shrimp dumplings, chicken and basil potstickers, steamed spinach dumplings, and (my personal favorite) shrimp balls with shrimp chips. All in all it was an excellent meal and I can't wait to find some excuse to ditch my diet and go get more dim sum.

Later on in the evening, we went to Truluck's. We got our reservations about a month ago, but it was mostly worth it. We started with some of their complimentary aerated water. It turns out that aerated water tastes just like regular water, but whatever.

We started with warm goat cheese with sweet chilis, olives, and spiced pecans served with crostini. It was freaking awesome. This is definitely something that I'm going to try to make at home. The pecans added texture and sweetness, while the chilies were tart and tangy and the olives were the right amount of salty.

I followed with the Knife and Fork Caesar Salad. The caesar salad was made with large pieces of romaine lettuce with large shavings of pecorino cheese, a few anchovy filets, and a couple crostinis for croutons. It was okay. It was over dressed and the whole "knife and fork" part was basically because nothing was cut for you. The anchovies were a it out of place, but they were tasty. In all it was sort of gimmicky, but whatever. Colby liked it too.

What Colby *didn't* like, however, was the lobster bisque. I had some of it too and it was interesting. It was completely smooth, with no pieces of lobster and was strangely sweet. I was glad that I ordered the salad instead of the lobster bisque.

Our entrees came next and I got the Florida stone crab claw platter. It was really delicious and served with a mustard dipping sauce and parmesan mashed potatoes, and asparagus. The sides weren't really noteworthy, but the crab claws were really good. It was different than what I'm used to (snow crab). I wasn't a huge fan of the mustard dipping sauce, but it was really good with a bit of lemon.

Colby got the miso-glazed sea bass with crab fried rice. He said that it was the best fish he's ever had. The crab fried rice was pretty good as well. (he wouldn't let me try the fish!)

We finished with a key lime pie. It had a graham cracker crust with bits of coconut and it was exceptionally lime-tastic. I really liked it, but Colby thought that the lime was overpowering.

In all, I'd definitely go again... for like another birthday, or if someone magically granted us millions of dollars because it was crazy expensive.

14 February 2010

10 February 2010

Unfairness tastes like sweet potatoes... also brown sugar, heavy cream, and butter.

My 'sband is trying to destroy my dieting efforts.

For instance, my dinner tonight: 1/3 filet baked boneless, skinless chicken breast, chips+salsa (okay, that wasn't the best choice, but I didn't get home til 8!), water.

His dinner

And yet, he has -2% body fat and is getting a six pack just from watching *me* diet.

So. Not. Fair.

07 February 2010

Crabby Menus

The rapid onslaught of work doesn't seem like it's going to let up, so here's some meal planning, as well as a recipe for what we had for dinner tonight.

Monday: Eggs, pan sausage, toast
Tuesday: grilled shrimp, mushrooms, peppers, sweet potatoes
Wednesday: Pizza?
Thursday: Salmon w/dill, green beans, quinoa
Friday: baked bbq chicken breast, brown rice, brussels sprouts

Tonight we were invited to a Super Bowl party, but didn't attend because a) we're lazy and b) it's hard to resist temptation in the form of fried finger food and barrels of beer. My response to an appetizer-like food was crab stuffed mushrooms:

Healthy Crab Stuffed Mushrooms

~20 medium-sized mushroom caps, de-stemmed
1 t olive oil
1 T shallot, minced (I used the smaller lobe)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 c panko
1/4 c greek yogurt (I used fat free fage)
1 T cream cheese, room temp
1 T grated parmesan
1.5 t dijon mustard
1 t Old Bay seasoning
1 t kosher salt
1 c cooked crab meat
1/4 c shredded mozzarella cheese
salt+pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 375. Heat oil over medium heat in a small pan. add shallots and a pinch of kosher salt. cook until soft (a couple minutes if they're small enough). Lower heat and add in garlic. Cook for another minute or so and remove the pan from the heat. In a large mixing bowl, add cream cheese, greek yogurt, mustard, parmesan, Old Bay, 1 t kosher salt and a few grinds of black pepper and mix until well combined. Add in panko and the crab and gently mix until combined. Take about a ping-pong ball sized amount of the mix and press until it's formed a ball that sort of sticks together and place in the mushroom cap. Repeat. sprinkle the entire batch with cheese (or place a little bit on each mushroom if you're anal, like me). Cook entire batch for ~20 minutes.

This really tastes like crab, which is good if you like crab and bad if you're using KrabMeat^TM. This isn't the typical crab stuffed mushrooms, it's been considerably healthied up, but when you're craving the real deal, it's good enough. I served it with a dipping sauce made of 1/4c fat free greek yogurt + dijon mustard + Old Bay with a pinch of salt.

I have better Colby in my refrigerator

We bought a batch of eggs that have blood in them. Definitely not appetizing and I'm not sure if they're fertilized. Either way, I won't touch them, but since Colby will eat anything, he's in charge of making sure they don't go to waste.

This morning he made scrambled eggs, as I made smoothies for us and he called me over to the pan, "Hey, look at the dead chick!"

I looked in horror until he told me that it was a dried apricot. That he put into the pan ON PURPOSE to freak me out.

I clearly have found a winner.

02 February 2010

Late night menu

In the spirit of a quick update here's a menu based mostly on a $78 shopping "spree" at Central Market.

Tuesday: Mustard-dill salmon with couscous, steamed broccoli, and roasted brussels sprouts
Wednesday: chicken stir-fry w/broccoli, red peppers, mushrooms, brown rice
Thursday: French bread pizza with mushrooms, artichokes, and pepperoni
Friday: Grilled shrimp with sweet potatoes, roasted brussels sprouts
Saturday: Chicken+black beans+ pepperoncini+ cheese, w/tortilla chips
Sunday: Turkey sandwich w/spinach+artichoke spread, fruit smoothie, and chicken noodle soup

mustard dill salmon for two

2 salmon filets
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
2 T dijon mustard
1 T honey
1 tsp lemon juice
1 T chopped fresh dill
1/4 t kosher salt

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix together EVOO, mustard, honey, lemon juice, dill, and salt. Place salmon skin side down and sprinkle with salt+pepper and cover with sauce mixture. Bake for ~18 minutes.

We had this tonight and it was super quick and tasty... now onto more pressing issues like flux freezing in star-forming molecular clouds.