Thursday, April 21, 2011

Benefits of packing your lunch

I listened in to a teleseminar this morning that featured Jim Beverly sharing financial planning advice for young PR professionals, sponsored by PRSA. Although it was targeted to new pros in the PR industry most of his advice could easily be applied to anyone just starting off on their first job.

He directed us to The Nest for some great tips on finances and budgeting, check it out! While I was reading the site today I found an amazing statistic: The average working professional spends nearly $1500 on restaurant and fast food lunch. 
photo from here
I'm trying to pack my lunch at least four days per week to save some money and ensure I'm eating healthy. It's challenging to force yourself to pack a lunch before heading off to work, but I challenge you to try! At my house it works best to make it the night before.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Smashed white bean & avocado sammich

Another delish sammie recipe. I like this because it's packed with protein and is so portable to pack in a lunchbox.
photo and recipe from here

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Red Wine Sangria

I can't stop thinking about swimming and laying out by the pool. On Sundays during the summer Jesse and I spend the entire day in the backyard--it's perfect. And, what's a Sunday outdoors with out sangria?

This recipe is from Cooks Illustrated. I like it because it's easy and doesn't require a million ingredients. But, we always switch up the fruit we put in our sangria, depending what we have around the kitchen.

2 large juice oranges, washed; one orange sliced; remaining orange juiced

1 large lemon, washed and sliced
¼ cup granulated sugar
¼ cup Triple Sec

One 750 ml. bottle inexpensive, fruity, medium-bodied red wine, chilled

Get Cookin'
1. Add sliced orange and lemon and sugar to large pitcher; mash gently with wooden spoon until fruit releases some juice, but is not totally crushed, and sugar dissolves, about 1 minute. Stir in orange juice, Triple Sec, and wine; refrigerate for at least 2, and up to 8, hours.
2. Before serving, add 6 to 8 ice cubes and stir briskly to distribute settled fruit and pulp; serve immediately.

Servings: 4

Note: It's best to make sangria a day before enjoying it to let the flavors mix together. If that's not possible, give it two hours in the fridge.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

22 healthy lunch ideas

I love peanut butter sandwiches, a lot, but sometimes a girl has to mix up lunch. It's hard to find exciting, healthy options to pack for work, but Cooking Light has come up with 22 unique lunch recipes that are perfect for to pack for work.

I've had this Vera Bradley lunch box for almost a year and it motivates me to pack my own lunch (so I can show off my cute lunch box). Sounds silly, I know, but if it gets me to eat better quality food, I'm all for it. There are almost 30 patterns to choose from--Jesse's mum has a teal and brown one, too.

Now, back to the contents inside the lunchbox: food. 
Some of my favorite from Cooking Light's lunch recipe round-up:

Monday, April 11, 2011

Honey-toasted fruit muesli

I landed a PR job! As a result, I'm scouring my favorite blogs for yummy breakfast recipes that will keep me filled while I work my first 8-5 job. I've tried making big batches of granola and cereal bars from scratch, they're always much more wholesome than those at the store. However, I haven't found one that I love. I feel good about this one.

photo and recipe from here

Fruit Salsa & Cinnamon Chips

This weekend my friends had a bbq at Canyon Lake planned. However, the weather had other plans. The temperature never got about 60 degrees--unheard of for Arizona in April! So, what should have been a sunny, fun at the lake day turned into a Wii tournament and indoor picnic, which was totally okay with me.
photo from here

One girl brought fruit salsa and cinnamon chips. I was apprehensive to try the combination (I was expecting a mango salsa like the kind commonly used in fish tacos). But everyone kept raving about the salsa so I finally tried it. Good thing I did--it's amazing (anod nothing like mango salsa for fish tacos) and I can't wait to share it with everybody! The recipe is originally from AllRecipes.

I think this would be a great substitute for syrup on pancakes, or to put in oatmeal or yogurt.

  • Ingredients

  • 2 kiwis, peeled and diced
  • 2 Golden Delicious apples - peeled, cored and diced
  • 8 ounces raspberries
  • 1 pound strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons fruit preserves, any flavor
  • 10 (10 inch) flour tortillas
  • butter flavored cooking spray
  • 2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar

Get Cookin'

In medium bowl, mix all fruit, sugar and preserves. Cover and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve. 

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. 

Spray one side of tortilla's with cooking spray and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Cut into wedges/strips. Spray again. Arrange on baking sheet and cook for 8-10 minutes. 

Cool on cooling rack.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Romaine Pesto and Egg-Stuffed Tomatoes

Haven't had a chance to experiment with this recipe yet, but, as Smitten Kitchen explained, "It's calling to me." I can't wait for next weekend to try this recipe!

Photo and recipe from here