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Grilled Thai Peanut Chicken and Veggie Fried Quinoa

I’m sorry I have been gone for so long. All of my classes decided to have exams at the¬†same time. Isn’t that always how it works though. When it rains it pours, right? I’ve missed blogging so much, but was always so tired and too stressed. I just couldn’t sit down and write something worth reading. But never fear, I am here ūüôā
I am almost done with the chaos for the time being. And I was in serious need of a study break, so why not post?

An ode to peanut butter:

Peanut butter, oh peanut butter/
Where are thou/
oh, thou are right next to me/
and I have a spoon/
how convenient.

My brain is basically a mushy mass of unrelated, crazy thoughts. Don’t judge me.

I love peanut butter. I eat it with everything. Apples, celery, popcorn, toast, crackers, bagels, oatmeal, pancakes, cookies, cereal, rice cakes, and (of course)¬†on a spoon. Is it just me or is one spoonful just not enough? I can’t ever stop at one. I can stop at one chip, I can stop at one cookie, but I can never stop at one spoonful of peanut butter. Since I’ve gotten to school (which is now a little over a month) I have eaten three [and a half], yes THREE, family size jars of peanut butter. That may be a record. I’ll have to check on that.

If you feel like it’s time for an intervention, I would not argue with you. Instead I would agree with you, sneak to my room, and take my peanut butter (that I’m hoarding) and run for it.

*Hello, my name is Chelsea and I am completely addicted to peanut butter.*

-Anyway-
I was craving peanut butter [surprise]¬†but it was dinner time and I wouldn’t want to ruin my appetite now would I? So I combined my craving of peanut butter with dinner. This Thai Peanut Chicken is SO good and easy. The sauce is literally 4 (ish) ingredients and takes 2 minutes. Pair it with my veggie fried quinoa and you have one tasty, hunger-quenching dinner.

This is one of my favorite meals to make because it is ridiculously easy and it SO DARN DELICIOUS. You’ll just have to try it out and see for yourself!

Thai chicken and veggie fried quinoa

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Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce & Pasta

So I ride my bike to school everyday. I love to bike; it’s good for me, it’s faster than the bus or walking, and it’s super convenient. In my apartment complex we have bike racks to lock our bikes and I’ve never had a problem with it being outside. Well, this past weekend I didn’t use my bike. When I go to get on my bike to ride on to class, I swing my leg over and try to sit…and notice that my bike seat is MISSING. Missing you say? How is that possible? SOMEONE STOLE IT!

Ugh. So I had to make reports to my apartment complex managers and the police. It baffles me that someone would just come up and steal a bike seat…like what? Apparently bike part/bike thefts are very common here. My dad was telling me that one of the national news stations did a series on bike thefts a couple of days ago. Ironic.¬†He said that they put a GPS inside the bike and within the hour the bike was stolen, taken apart, and hidden in someone’s house. So maybe my bike seat is sitting in someone’s house waiting to be used again. I hope they enjoy it because it was a really nice, comfortable seat.
Then came the hunting-for- bike-parts adventure. My silly bike (her name is Ethel) made it very difficult to find the right replacement parts, but my wonderful, detective mother found them!

Anyway, after dealing with all of that, class, homework, meetings, and rehearsal all week, I’m tired. Therefore, I didn’t want to make anything for dinner that was too complicated, but really wanted something delicious. I looked in my freezer and saw that I had frozen butternut squash (pureed) and pasta in my cupboard. HAZA! A work of art was born.

Introducing my Creamy Butternut Squash Sauce & Pasta: delicious, nutritious, and easy. It is sweet, thanks to the squash, and savory, thanks to the spices. It’s saucy [Don’t get saucy with me, Bearnaise!] and creamy and amazing. Enough yakking, lets eat.

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Cereal squares

I’m coo-coo for cocoa puffs! They’re GREAAAT! Silly Rabbit! They’re magically delicious! Breakfast of Champions.
If you haven’t caught on yet, those are slogans for a few of the very popular cereals on the current market. Cereal, oh cereal how I love thee. I, and many others on this Earth, include cereal in their daily routine.

*stands on soap box*
I must tell you, though it breaks my heart, that the cereal on the grocery shelves that you have spent hundreds of dollars on over the years is terrible. There I said it. It is filled with a ridiculously large amount of sugar (in several forms), artificial food coloring, BHT, random “stabilizers and preservatives”, and a whole bunch of other ingredients you have never heard of and certainly wouldn’t use in your kitchen. I literally almost had a panic attack when I looked at the ingredients and understood what I was putting into my body by the bowlful.
Why, oh why, do they need to put such terrible things in our food? Cereal companies focus on selling their product to children with their colorful boxes, cute spokespeople/things, and catchy commercials. They count on kids being drawn in and their parents buying it for them. Most cereals have at least 9-11 grams of sugar (refined and processed, of course) in just a 3/4 cup. Let’s be real though, who only eats a 3/4 cup serving..not me.¬†We are only supposed to have 24 grams (for woman) or 36 grams (for men) of sugar in our diet a day and that is the max. With all of the other foods we eat, this bowl full of sugar is not helping us keep that number in check.

You know how all the specialists say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day? Well, if that is true, why would you be feeding yourself a bowl of sugar n’ chemicals? That is most certainly not great.

So those cute colorful (delicious) marshmallows, those mini chocolate chip cookies, those little balls that taste like a peanut butter cup, and even your ‘natural’ (ha) granola, are now banned forever from entering into my body again and I hope yours too!
I have been trying to create something¬†to squash my intense cereal withdrawals. This particular recipe came about by accident, actually. I was trying to make gluten free crust and it didn’t work out, but it most certainly worked as cereal! YAY FOR EXPERIMENTS!

This cereal is gluten free, vegan, vegetarian, kid friendly, adult friendly, no processed sugars, preservative/chemical free, and very-happy-tummy approved. Winner all around.
Cereal squares
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Peanut Butter Quinoa Bowl

Happy weekend everyone! These past two years of college weekends were never exciting because I would spend all day doing homework. This year I decided to stop (sort of) being such a workaholic and do some fun things on the weekends. I went¬†rock climbing today! They have all of these activities for free with my college ID: rock climbing, water skiing, kayaking, disc golf, sailing…how did I not know about this? Oh yeah…I was holed up in my room…

I am currently trying to put more balance in every aspect of my life: food, work, fun, and so on. Stressing is so not worth it. You only live once, so why not make the most of it?
So back to my adventures of conquering the wall. Rock climbing is hard and rigorous (at least it is to me, since I have 0% body strength), but oh-my-goodness it was SO much fun. I took me a while to actually get up the wall, but I felt good about making it to the top both times I climbed! It helped that my belay guy was cute; motivation?
Well, this morning I decided if I was going to ‘work out’ I needed a good, filling, nutritious breakfast. To me that = peanut butter. Peanut butter keeps me feeling full for hours and satisfies even my most vicious hunger pangs. Combine PB with quinoa and you have a super protein-filled breakfast; ready for anything. So I concocted this breakfast beauty. Behold the perfect rock climbing, hunger quenching breakfast!

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Chia seed jam: Strawberry and Blueberry

Have you every been jammin’ at work to your favorite tunes and someone walks in? It’s awkward. I have a summer job where I work in an office all by my lonesome, so I play music to help pass the time.
I was playing some Paolo Nutini¬†(if you don’t know who that is, go look up his music ‚̧ ) and my favorite part came on. Naturally, I started dancing while taking a file to the filing cabinet…and someone walked in. They stared. Oh the awkward, it burns. I guess that all comes with the territory of being a great dancer…HA. When I was contemplating the jam session, I got to thinking. (Never a good thing) Somehow, my brain made a leap from jammin’ out to ‘New Shoes’ to actual jam. Yes, my brain works in strange and mysterious ways. It baffles even me sometimes. ANYWAY. I was thinking about how I never get to make jam when I’m at school because it takes forever¬†with all that mashing, boiling, sterilizing, and¬†waiting. Patience is a virtue I lack. After some research on the internet I saw lots of people talking about chia seed jam. pure. genius. I decided to just wing it and try to make it on the fly. IT’S SO GOOD. Blend. Let sit. Eat. both jams Adapted from several internet posts
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Asian BBQ Meatballs

This recipe blossomed from my mom outwardly wondering what we were going to have for dinner. I told her that I would make dinner, so she could just relax a little. [She certainly doesn’t have many chances to do that!] I started thinking what I could make that would make my whole family happy (not all are as taste-adventurous as yours truly)..
We had ground chicken in the fridge and my recipe-creator gears started whirring in my head, attempting to create something unique and relatively simple to make.
You may be thinking..meatballs..unique? Not very. BUT I put a bit of a twist on these little round shaped balls of meat. I created an ‘Asian BBQ’ sauce to top them and give them a bit of a kick.
I don’t actually know if this would be considered Asian, but that was my inspiration for the flavor palate. They were easier to make than I thought!
The whole family loved it and said it was definitely a¬†keeper. I know it’s just my family and they would never shun me for a bad recipe, but I always get nervous to see how they like something I created. It’s a thought-baby you want everyone to think is cute. Weird comparison.
After dinner, my mom started naming all of these things she’d like to put the sauce on…I think that means she liked it a little bit.
There aren’t very many ingredients and they are most likely all ingredients you have on hand. It’s perfect for a quick throw together meal for those I-have-to-run-to-rehearsal, or I’m-too-tired kind of night. Enjoy your chels-ified Asian BBQ Meatballs.

Asian BBQ meatballs chopsticks
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Peanut butter chocolate sauce

I used to hate chocolate and peanut butter. BLASPHEMY, I know. But now I absolutely loveee that combination. Reeses were a bit of a problem for a while because I couldn’t stop eating them. When I started to pay attention to what I put in my in my body, though, Reeses were not on the ‘okay’ list. That was a sad day.

My fellow peanut butter and chocolate lovers, you understand addiction to that combo and how difficult it would be to give it up. Well, I’ve found a quick fix for that undeniable craving for a Reeses. I discovered this from mixing some ingredients for an oatmeal recipe and was overjoyed ¬†by the result. Literally overjoyed..I may have jumped for a joy a couple of times…
It only has 2 ingredients and takes a mere 30 seconds to make. A miracle you say?

peanut butter chocolate sauce

 

Mmmmm, look at that positively scrumptious peanut-y chocolate-y goodness….
The sauce is pictured here a-top my Minute Magic Muffin. But I have also poured it on pancakes, waffles, spread it on toast, and covered my oatmeal with it.
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