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Monday, March 28, 2011

Fired Up with Neeps and Taters & I See Fit People!

Everyone remember THIS song??

I thought so.

Adding a little spice to your life can benefit you for many reasons! Capsacin, which is what gives hot peppers their kick, is good for your metabolism and helps the body burn calories faster. Eating spicy foods may also relieve pain temporarily, and increase air flow (in more ways than one, haha)

This recipe came from Athena, one of the readers on I See Fit People, for Meatless Monday.

Sweet Potato Enchiladas
Original recipe is here

  • 2 lbs sweet potatoes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 - 4 garlic cloves - depending on your preference
  • 1 -3 tsp curry powder - again, depending on your preference
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Black beans (optional)
  • Tortillas of your choice - We used Dempster's Body Wise, about 8 tortillas
  • Taquera sauce - We used La Costeña, I believe 
  • 1/2 cup cheese, for topping 

Peel sweet potatoes, and chop into cubes. Steam.
In a frying pan with a small amount of oil, sauté onion and garlic until their natural sugars caramelize.
Mash sweet potatoes, add sautéed garlic and onion and curry powder. Add salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.

Place about 1/2 cup of your sweet potato mixture per tortilla. Make yourself a little "bean boat" after spreading mixture out. Add about 1/4 cup black beans per tortilla.

Roll and nestle in rectangular baking pan. Our pan was about 9" x 11" and fit all 8 perfectly.

Pour sauce over tortillas and spread to cover. Top with cheese. 

Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for approx. 30 minutes.


Diggin in..
About 0.000005 seconds later
I topped mine with Fat-Free Sour Cream! NOM!
One serving = 1 enchilada:
Calories - 236, Fat - 3.8 g, Carbs - 42.5, Fibre - 6.5g, Protein - 8g


This next recipe was inspired by a soup from the bakery I work at. It's got a little more of a spice than theirs, which is perfectly fine by me. I was trying to make something that everyone would enjoy! This is not for the faint of palette, because boy, it's got that kick!

Fired Up Chicken Stew

  • 1 lb boneless, skinless chicken, cut into small pieces - or approx. 2 lrg chicken breasts
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 cup onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp chipotle chili powder - If you don't have this, regular is fine
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1.5 tsp oregano
  • Dash smoked paprika - Optional
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 tbsp lime juice
  • 0.5 cup instant rice

Over medium heat, heat olive oil. Brown until chicken is no longer pink.

Add red pepper, onion and garlic. Sauté for about 5 minutes.

 Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and smoked paprika. Add milk and chicken broth, stir to mix.

Add in corn, chick peas, and lime juice. Bring to boil and stir in rice. Turn heat down to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Serve while hot. Top with sour cream or plain yogurt, cheese and green onion, if desired!!

Next time I will be adding black beans to add extra toot ;)
Makes 5 - 2 cup servings
Calories - 276, Fat - 5.4g, Carbs - 25.8g, Fibre - 3.6g, Protein -13 g

Lauren  (Neeps and Taters)
Wendy (I See Fit People

Monday, March 21, 2011

tattoos & zucchini blossom

So this Saturday past, my mother and I went to get her 2nd and my 3rd tattoo. 

I had been wanting something for my family tattoo for a long time. A few months ago, I asked my mom if she would ever consider in getting a tattoo with me. She said yes, of course. So on to the Google we went. Searching and searching for the perfect scotch thistle, which is what we both decided to get. See, I was born and raised in the Maritimes, and that is where most of my family still is. So a lot of people close to my heart are very, very far away from where I currently am in the middle of the Alberta prairies. I wanted to get something that would incorporate my family motto, and remind me every day of where I came from. 

Just a warning, there is a picture of the tattooing process that may gross some of you out. Mmm ooze.

Prepping her tools

Yup, I'm a bleeder

Sarah hard at work

Clean up!

Flipped mirror pic :)

Bare canvas...
Her stencil

Oh this feels lovely... not.

Finished product!

Her tattoo was the MacDonald family motto "Per mare, per terras" which translated means "By sea, by land" while mine is the Kennedy motto "Avise la fin" which means "Consider the end." Depressing, I know. We both chose the scotch thistle because they remind us of our roots, and because they also thrive in the harshest of conditions.

Reppin' the tattoo parlor!
 It was a fun (albeit somewhat painful) experience, and the girl that did our tattoos did a great job. I can wait another 3 years for that feeling again, though. I will post pictures after they are both completely healed.

We had also planned to go out for lunch afterward at this cute little cafe/market called The Zucchini Blossom. Oh. Em. Gee. I will most definitely be going back!! The food there was wonderful, and they had so many interesting things for sale. A lot of organic stuff as well :) Of course I had to get pictures of everyone's food (except my brother's, they were late with that) Also, I just realized that I got pictures of everyone's food except my own, for some reason! So I stole a pic from my friend's Facebook.

Chai Latte made with loose tea leaves

Orange cream Italian Soda
Lemon bar - Which my friend ate first :)
The 'El Gaucho' - Pork loin, mayo, cheese and chimmichurri

The Breakfast panini - Ham, provolone, egg and pesto

The El Gaucho panini & Green tomatillo corn chowder

The Special of the day - Veggie Chili with a side of focaccia bread
My boyfriend, myself and my Alberta bestie Shianne
The El Gaucho with a side of bean salad - So fresh and tasty!

 I could not have asked for a better post-tattoo meal. I also had a peach-pomegranate spritzer, and a homemade ginger-molasses cookie for dessert. Omnomnom. If you are from southern Alberta and need a new place to go for your coffee or tea, this is the place. Totally awesome! This means you tourists too ;)


- Do any of you have tattoos? What is their significance, if any?
- Do you love trying out new cafes and restaurants?  

Throwdown with Neeps and Taters & I See Fit People!

I have decided to do something a little different today. My mother and I were both making something in the kitchen, so I decided to make a sort of ~collaboration~ post. So here is the first (and most likely not the last) post with my mom, Wendy, creator of I See Fit People

The bases of our recipes today are chickpeas (Don't let me hear those groans, people) and quinoa. 

Her recipe is from the Looney Spoons recipe book by the Podleski sisters


  •  1 - 19 oz can chickpeas, drained
  • 0.25 cup light sour cream (or fat-free, whichever you prefer)
  • 2 tbsp tahini or almond butter
  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tsp garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp lemon zest (sometimes leave this out)
  • 0.5 tsp toasted sesame oil
  • 0.5 tsp each salt and granulated sugar
  • 0.25 tsp each ground cumin and ground coriander

Place all ingredients in the bowl of a food processor and whirl until smooth. Serve with veggies or oven toasted pitas (or Kashi crackers! Yum!)

Calories (per 1/4 cup serving) - 104, Fat - 3 g, Fibre - 3.1 g

We honestly make this all the time, it's right up there with the lentils and the sweet potatoes! 
I see a lot of people on the blogs I follow using hummus as a salad dressing, so this time around I might just have to try it!

 You know how you just have to eat sometimes and you can't wait for supper to be ready? Well I made this little bowl of goodness while I was waiting for my main recipe to be cooked. 

Isn't it colorful and tasty looking? I added some quinoa, a sprinkle of chick peas, red onion, feta cheese, a sliced mini dill pickle on the top, along with some Italian dressing and freshly cracked pepper. It hit the spot, completely! You could even whip up a quick vinagrette to pour over this. But omnomnom it was SO fresh and the textures were awesome! You could even make this in a larger amount for a warm salad :)

This next recipe was TOTALLY awesome, and I cannot wait for leftovers tomorrow. Hopefully there's some still in the fridge when I wake up. If not, I'll make another one of my tasty colorful salads, maybe with some hummus dressing ;)

Cheesy Butternut Squash Quinoa Casserole
Adapted from Meals and Miles' recipe

  • 1 medium butternut squash, about 3 cups
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/4 red onion
  • 3 garlic cloves (yuuuuummmy!)
  • 1 cup milk 
  • 0.50 cup + 3 tbsp plain yogurt
  • 0.50 cup shredded cheese
  • 1 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp rosemary  (I will be using about half as much the next time I make this)
  • 1 tbsp oregano
  • 1 tbsp + 2 splashes Worchestershire sauce
  • Salt and pepper
  • Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Peel, hollow and chop your butternut squash into small pieces. On a cooking sheet lined with parchment paper, put butternut squash and sprinkle with cinnamon, salt and pepper. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until squash is tender

When your squash is almost finished cooking, combine all ingredients except for cheese in a bowl. Add squash.

Mix all ingredients well and transfer to casserole dish. Top with cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove foil and bake for another 15 - 20 minutes, or until cheese is lightly browned.

See what I did there? ;)

After the 3 of us attacked it

Makes approx. 6 - 1 cup servings.
Calories per serving - 235.4, Fat - 5.3 g, Carbs - 38.1 g, Fibre - 2.7, Protein - 9.5 g

Now you have not one, not two, but three yummy recipes to try! 

What are your plans for this week? 

P.S. - This song has been stuck in my head since I picked up the Chicago DVD at Winners!!
It is so great!!