Thursday, June 30, 2011

"Back" on the mend

Well, after months of having a bad back... I finally went to the chiropractor! 

I tried to go to my General Practitioner back in February... looking for a referral.   She didn't give me one. She told me to do some back exercises to strengthen my back. I tried, and I think i was succeeding for a bit. The pain went away for a while. Any morning where I didn't ache was cause for celebration.

But now, the pain was more intense... sharp pains in my lower left back.  Enough to finally make me find a chiropractor.

Very long story very short... I have no chiropractic coverage! So I went to a doctor that was referred to be by friend. 

1) he was very hot.
2) he used this on me:

3) back feels better already!

Now, to practice what he told me to do, Sit right, exercises and balls.

Concrete Demo

Concrete Demo by Petunia21
Concrete Demo, a photo by Petunia21 on Flickr.

Day 4 of the concrete Demo... fixing of pool pipes and drainage... or something like that!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

new coffee table

new coffee table by Petunia21
new coffee table, a photo by Petunia21 on Flickr.
After hours of searching and comparing and thrift store hopping, we found our new coffee table!


Flamer has gone Mexican!

Flamer, my 3 1/2 QT. Le Creuset Braiser has mostly played a key role in my Indian curries cookings.

But I was inspired by my friend Jeanna's Eetlust blog:  She just purchased her 2nd Le Creuset piece in just under under 8 days from buying her first one (I'm so proud of her...I swear, they multiply by themselves!). She blogged a few weeks ago about the frittata that she made with her new little LC frying pan.

I have Brenda, my 8 inch skillet that lives upon Sonny a 2 1/2 Qt sauce pan... but there are 2 of us here in this household, so I felt that the 8 inch skillet was not big enough for breakfast...

So, I decided to use Flamer, who was still drying from last night's Indian delight.  I opened up to the fridge to see who wanted to play this morning... and it was spinach!

We went to costo last week, and I have this enormous go to bag of spinach that is already pre-washed and ready to go! I cut up an onion and sauteed for a few minutes. Thew in 3 huge handfuls of spinach and let it wilt down.  then I added a few scrambled eggs some parmasan cheese, and then threw some mozzarella cheese.

Then I threw that puppy in the broiler... something I have YET to do in Flamer... or any of pans!  It was quite exhilarating! Once all the cheese was melted I took it out and voila! My first ever frittata!


Indian Saturday Night!

Yesterday morning, while eating our spelt banana pecan pancakes, Brian chose Pyaaz Murghi... Breasts of Chicken in an Onion-Turmeric Sauce out of our 660 curries cook book by Raghavan Iyer


This is how we normally how we go about finding the perfect weekend curry... Brian looks through, picks one, he reads the ingredients while I am standing at attention in front of the spice cabinet and fridge to see if we have enough ingredients to do it!

As he reads: canola oil, CHECK. Turmeric... CHECK. ..... Punjabi garam masala......... CHECK!  I was thrilled! I had made punjabi garam masala a few months ago.  The recipe I was using it for made more than what the day's recipe called for.  I had an extra small glass jar and labeled it and stuck it in my spice cabinet.  I knew I'd use it again one day, but was thrilled when I was able to pull it out so quickly!  Being organized helps to make life more manageable!


This is certainly a "during" photo. And I was too hungry to take an "after". But imagine a darker color yellow from the garam masala all sprinkled with green from the fresh cilantro and strips of julienne ginger. We put it over brown rice and served with some roasted cauliflower.  YUMMY! (almost zero leftovers!)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Spelt Brownies

Spelt Brownies... TAKE ONE!

3 eggs
1/2 cup coconut sugar
2 Tbsp of powdered stevia
2 tsp vanilla

3/4 cup spelt flour
1/2 cup cocoa (unsweetened)
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
1 cup pecans, chopped (optional)

3/4 cup butter, melted

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a bowl beat together the egg, coconut sugar, stevia and vanilla. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt and nuts
  4. Mix together egg and flour mixture then add melted butter.
  5. Scrape mixture into a 9" by 13" cake pan (grease pan or use parchment paper).
  6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes. Brownies are done when a toothpick stuck in their center comes out clean.
I halved this recipe since I wanted to play around with the sugar content.

They came out really good! I haven't had brownies on almost 3/4 of a year!  These are more cake-y, and I'd like to explore to make them more fudge-y.  But I have a starting off point.


Monday, June 20, 2011

Insanely Good Banana Nut Pancakes

Each weekend, I try to mix up and match my extracts and spices to my spelt pancake batter to see how create I can get...

This weekend's delight was inspired by 2 ripe bananas sitting in my fruit hammock...

As these babies were hitting the griddle, the husband asked "Are you baking something?"  They smelt wonderful!

Banana Nut Pancakes just poured

You can notice the bits of walnuts in the pancakes!

One more to flip... they were smelling so good!


This platter will serve me for a week!
Here's the recipe for the:


2 cups of spelt flour                               
½ cup of almond meal                           
¾  tsp of salt                                          
3 tsp baking powder
1 Tbsp Cinnamon                                       
2 cups of room temperature milk   (1 1/2 cups for thicker pancakes)                   
2 room temperature eggs                           
2 Tbsp coconut oil room temperature (should be in liquid form) or canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract 
½ cup crushed, hammered, or hand squeezed walnuts
2 ripe bananas, mushed

Combine dry together. Then wet together. Then mix together.  I used an 1/8th cup measuring cup to make mini-ish pancakes.

These smell like banana bread fresh out of the oven!

Next time... I'm adding dark chocolate chips to them!

Friday, June 17, 2011

Pesto Salmon with Broccoli


I picked 6 cups of basil yesterday off of our enormous basil plant! It truly needed a haircut. There is still plenty of basil left.

I decided to make a pesto with my bounty. I had just enough pine nuts and picked leaves to make 3 batches.

I had no idea how pesto salmon was gonna taste, but I went for it!

I made the Weight Watchers pesto, and cover 2 salmon fillets with it, then stuck it under the broiler for about... 15-20 minutes.  I pan fried some broccoli in my cast-iron skillet and left the carbs in the closet. I had a LOT of brown rice at lunch!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Lunchtime delight

Lunchtime delight by Petunia21
Lunchtime delight, a photo by Petunia21 on Flickr.
A relaxing lunch time for me!

My ipod & journal.

My delicious leftovers of spelt and roasted chicken along with a freshly nuked broccoli with EVOO and salt. All together in my little try thanks to our kitchen, and of course, my jumbo water!


Blanca, my beautiful 18 oz. serving bowl which is a Japanese exclusive, in the color pearl.  She is oval shaped and measures 7" long x 5-1/2" wide and is 2-3/8" high.

She was a gift from Aunt Jeanna who I work with who LOVES Le Creuset as well.  Aunt Jeanna actually gifted me with Lola. You can read all about Lola on the link.


Aunt Jeanna went to the NEW Le Creuset outlet in the Citadel outlets in Los Angeles and felt Blanca needed a home with me!

I naturally welcomed her into the family immediately with open arms, and stomach!

My breakfast of yogurt, agave nectar and Ezekiel almond cereal never tasted to wonderful :)

Love yourself.

I did an 11 mile hike yesterday in Altadena.  Did great going up! Killed coming down :( I have a blister on by big toe... the size of my big toe!

I decided to love myself today... and wear sneakers to work. Its about the first time in MONTHS!

And thank goodness that my yoga teacher is in Seattle today, cause I was able to sleep in and rest my body!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Horrified or Amazed

I'm not sure which one!

Lamb Meatball Soup


My co-worker made this soup last night using Carmen, her new 7 1/4 QT. Le Creuset Oval Doufeu.
Stock photo (actual picture of Carmen will be posted soon). 

Carmen is actually my god daughter. And I had the pleasure of naming her! (that's a story for another time.)

This was the first time I ever tried lamb!  Mom and Dad never cooked it to my recollection growing up, so I had no inclination to really eat it.  But after my sister moved to Scotland, she says she eats it all the time.  

After a short conversation with my friend Kelly the other day, she was talking about these Tapas that she was eating at a restaurant and mentioned Lamb.  

So when presented with the opportunity to try this lamb soup today, I trepidatiously said "YES!" 

Kelly reminded me that its awesome, when the bowl was in front of me, so I put my big girl panties on and shoved the spoon i my mouth.  AND YUMMY! It felt REALLY lean. I don't know if that was the cut of the meat, the way that it was prepared, or the natural make up of the lamb, but I am pleased!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunday Morning Delight

My flavor explosions continue with my pancakes!

Today, it is Clove and Cinnamon Spelt Pancakes!


I added clove extract to the wet ingredients,but just a touch. I like 1/4 tsp. I went 1 tsp vanilla extract, and a big "glop" of cinnamon to the dry ingredients. There were not too cinnamon-y, and not too clove-y.

The husband gave two thumbs up.

I made up a little strawberry puree with a touch of agave nectar to sweeten.


Friday, June 3, 2011

Breakfast Options Expanded!

In my ever expanding need to mix up breakfast... I found this Ezekiel 4:9 cereal at whole foods. Not cheap, but this box will live at work, so my 6'4 husband won't be getting his hands on it!

Ezekiel 4:9 Sprouted Whole Grain Cereal

I haven't eaten it as "cereal" yet... I have been using it as an accoutrement to my yogurt. A little faux granola.  Its certainly crunchy! And NOT sweet at all.  I still added a touch of agave nectar to the oatmeal for the tiny bit of sweetness. But overall, I'm happy with a new breakfast find!



Wednesday, I went to my "regular" yoga practice before work, but spotted this yummy treat on the side of the class.

Actor, Neil Jackson

I actually have met Neil before, outside my office. I gushed and named dropped, cause he worked on a show that my friend was working on too.

Today, We was actually behind me... hence, making me really make sure I was keeping my tailbone tucked in, sucking my belly button to my spine, and trying to keep my boobs stuck out... (not sure if this was a proper technique, but I say, it couldn't hurt right?)

He actually suggested, like a boisterous teen-age boy "Lets to handstands!"  I said so he could hear me "thanks Neil" in a begrudged voice... but it was cool. Cause I totally was next to him!  (okay, my inner star-struck 15 year old  was totally practicing yoga today, and not my Hollywood accustomed 31 year old true self)

Cool thing was... I actually was able to kick myself up on the wall and do a wall supported handstand!  I was so excited, holding myself up on the wall, taking and making adjustments from Trisha (the instructor) and... SMILING!!!

It was great! so, yeah, THANKS NEIL!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New Breakfast Delight!

I have been led to agave nector... agave is what tequila is make from... just saying.

I added the organic raw blue agave nectar to my plain yogurt this morning. It was DELIGHTFUL!  Tastes just like honey! Just at a lower glycemic index which won't spike my blood sugar levels as quickly as honey.

As an added bonus/crunch, I added some of my Nature's Path's Millet Rice flakes which are slighly (barely) sweetened with fruit juice, as a granola-esque topping, and it was again, quite delightful.

I'm tickled to have found a new protein filled, fiber speckled go to breakfast!

This is how I packed it for work today!