Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Hi Guys!
I have moved! Go check me out at http://bakealittle.wordpress.com/

Thanks :)

Thursday, July 7, 2011

5K, 10K Training- Love/ Hate Sitchy

So I realize that I have been neglecting the exercise portion of my blog so I decided it was due time to update you on my (5k) 10K training! Welp lets just say, things are heating up!

I am officially on week 7 of the Couch to 5K plan and we have a love/hate relash.  Yes, I absolutely love that feeling as I prance down the streets of New York after my run feeling powerful and strong and wearing "I just worked out and your jel" sweat all over my fun Nike track shorts, but, while said run is happening, I look a little bit like this:

The interval training that happened the first five weeks was pretty right up my alley.  Running then walking left me satisfied but not felling sluggish.. Well my dear friends, interval training is over and its time to hit the treadmill at a nice run, consistently. My body hates me.  As I have told you all before, running was never really my jam. I always made excuse after excuse for why I just "couldn't run"- I don't have the lung capacity, I am bottom heavy (which is pretty much a lie...), my back hurts.  I am sick of it, so about 7 weeks ago I decided to take charge.

A lot of people probably say that training for a 5K should not take 9 weeks and that if I pushed myself hard enough, I could run 3.1 miles today.  Well you are right about part of that.  I am sure that if I pushed myself hard enough I could run 3.1 miles today, but I would end up being as discouraged as ever and making more excuses for why I "cannot run". I decided to do a program that would teach me to love running and would allow me to learn to trust my body and its capabilities.

Yesterday's run was probably the worst one yet.  I have had 6 weeks of great workouts and things have consistently gotten a little harder as I went along. However, yesterdays was like sticking forks into my eyes. Dull forks. I blame the weekend jousting tournament. However, looking back I am deciding to have a combination of positive outlooks about it:

1) It wasn't that bad, you made it out alive, move forward
2) It was terrible, therefore it cant get much worse and you made it out alive, so its only up from here! :)

I enjoy these. Either way, my 2.5 mile run yesterday (which took me 26.37 minutes, I have no shame, I am still learning how to be a runner, speed comes after) is now over and I am looking ahead to my 2.5 run tomorrow and Sunday. (hey, I am supposed to run 3 times a week but I have had such a mess of a week with the long weekend do you think its OK to count Sunday into this week's training as long as I don't count it with next week's as well? )

How are you guys doing with your training? Any of you make excuses that prevent you from pushing yourself?

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Red White and Shia with a Side Jousting

Hi Everyone! SO sorry I am been MIA the past couple of days.  With the 4th of July and traveling up the wazoo to go see BF, I decided to take what little time I had to relax and veg (ie: Women's health and Love Bites- anyone seen that? Surprisingly great!). 

Welp moving on! The 4th was amazing.  It is always so much fun to be down in DC for holidays, all the excitement of being a nice big city without all the stress of the Big Apple makes for one very happy Jessica.

The weekend consisted of all that you need for a successful trip:
1) Transformers 3D: Dark of the Moon- SCORE- Shia is a hottie.(Ok this pic may be a little more scary man than hottie, but you get the idea)

Shia is totally not my type at all but Selena Gomez has got it right with this one. BTW if you don't know what I am talking bout you are lame- please watch below: 
 2) A party involving outdoor beer pong, an inflatable jousting ring, a rooftop bar, and a lighting storm.  I will leave those images up to the imagination.

3) A little bit of (lot a bit of!!) BF and an extra long visit!

Yesterday after I got home from work I finally had a second to slow down from all the traveling, Shia worshiping and jousting (?) to relax, put up my feet and just hang out.  But nope, I most certainly did not do that. I did what I do best- I baked!!

I have been dying to make some of Julie's Peanut Butter Granola and I finally had the time. As most of you know, I always say, the best thing for a baker is when you have all the ingredients already.  WOOT! Check! Off I go. 

I made one slight tweak because I am a weirdo and I don't really like peanut butter but I would give my Right Arm (not my left, my RIGHT, the one I actually need to do stuff) for a never ending supply of Better N Butter. 

2 Tablespoons Better N Butter
2 Tablespoons Honey
1/4 Teaspoon Cinnamon
14 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 Cup Oats

1) Preheat oven to 325 degrees F
2) Combine BnB and honey in a microwave safe bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds. Remove and stir to fully combine
 3) Add in the cinnamon and vanilla and stir to combine 
4) Add oats to the wet mixture and fold until the oats are completely covered in BnB mixture.
5) Spread oats onto a pam-ed cookie sheet and bake for 7 – 8 minutes until granola is slightly browned.
 6) Let cool until granola is crunchy.
* * using too more peanut butter does not make mixture peanutbuttery-ier-, it makes it not crunchy. 
These stuff is the bomb. Julie was not lying. Addictive. Danger. Lock the cabinet... or just dominate the bowl. Hey, I needed to try some in order to accurately starfabulously rate it. DUH. 

Star Fabulous Rating: 9/10- Mine got a little soggy. I got PB happy. Oops! 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Cinnasugs in the House

I have an exciting recipe to share with you guys today! Simple as can be and really satisfies that sweet tooth when a giant piece of pie seems a little too heavy (just a little). Per usual I was catching up on my Reader on Monday and Katie had posted about Chickpea Poppers.  I love chickpeas and have made poppers (love calling them this!) similar to Katie's with some salt and garlic for a delicious movie watching snack.  Well if you guys are as big a fan of Chocolate Covered Katie as I am, you know that that girl can do some crazy things with chickpeas (think... Blondies) so I decided to take a page from her book and try and make a sweet chickpea popper. Well let me tell you-BOMB.com.

These treats are the perfect way to satisfy your sweet-tooth without going over the top.  I had about 2 tablespoons of chickpeas hanging next to the pickles in the fridge and decided I would experiment with a smaller quantity in case the adventure went extremely downhill.  Welp it didn't. Recipe below!

2 tablespoons cup chickpeas
3 packets of splenda sugar (that I stole from my office!)
1 teaspoon of cinnamon

Steps: (easy peasy)
1) In a bowl combine drained and washed chickpeas, splenda, cinnamon and a nice spray of pam.
2) Mix it all up so that the sugar and cinnamon evenly cover the all the chickpeas
3) On a pam-ed pan spread chickpeas evenly and and bake at 350 degrees F for 20 to 25 mins
4) Put in bowl- EAT ALL!

(please excuse this nasty picture, it is hard to show how delicious these are through a photo!)

These really are scrumptious. For what they are, I starfabulously rate them an 8/10.  Yes people, 8 star out of 10 stars for a treat that involves a bean. TRUTH.

Star Fabulous Rating: 8/10
Ok on to bigger and better things.  Yesterday for dinner I had my first EVER veggie burger.  I dominated one of these suckers:

with a little mozzarella cheese between two pieces of toasted whole wheat bread and now, my friends, all I can think of is how I want more.

How do you guys each your veggie burgers? I am a newbie and would love recipe ideas!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Roofs, Prosciutto and Good Company

So guys, if you know me at all, which you all do, you know that I am currently having one intense obsession.  No I am not talking feta or pickles, those are constants in my life and would be like saying I am obsessed with breathing.  Currently I need, I want, I gotta have me some of this:

All. The. Time. I love me some Pineapple Prosciutto Pizza, a nice fig prosciutto sandy, maybe some more Prosciutto Asparagus Pizza. You name it. I want it.

I promise this is going somewhere.

Because of my NEED for prosciutto, it should have been obvious to me when MS. JVO told me that she was making me a surprise dinner as a little late bday treat, that prosciutto would be involved.  Welp. Not only was it involved, it was the most heavenly dish I have ever had. 

Check that baby out.   That my friends is prosciutto, fresh mozzarella, melon and homemade pesto sauce (a light pesto sauce with just basil and shallots, no cheese).

Two forks and a bottle of wine later we were up on JVOs roof taking in the night and devouring that plate. 

I am still on cloud nine thinking about how scrumptious this was. Nom Nom Nom

That is all :) Just thought I would share!

What is one food you currently need, want, and gotta have?

Monday, June 27, 2011

I Like to Put Things That Are Orange In my Baked Goods

Hope everyone had an amazing weekend and wherever you are, the weather is as nice at is here in NYC!  The sun in bright, the air isn't too hot... and its almost the 4th of July long weekend. 

Last week I was "browsing the web" (surfing the internet?- geeze there is no non-nerdy way to say that) and found a recipe of carrot cake cookies on Eating Bird Food (Love her!) !! My boss has been raving about how he loves carrot cake and I have been dying to make something new and exciting (ie: not involving chocolate). I made a few slight tweaks and luckily had all the ingredients needed before I even decided to bake them (which, if you are a baker, you know is the best thing ever), so all I had to do was grate some mini baby carrots and I was good to go. I am sure this would have been so much easier if I had the big carrots but I thought, why go buy the big carrot when I've got a big pack a little carrots hanging next to the pickles in my fridge?

These cookies are a great treat because they are very flavorful and therefore, one really satisfies for a long time. Apparently, I like to add orange colored things to my baked goods because this one had two.

1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup vanilla yogurt (I substituted this in to replace the vegetable oil)
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar (to replace dark brown sugar)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 large egg
Orange zest from an entire large orange (more than was orgiianlly recommended- gave great orange flavor)
1/2 cup oats, old fashioned 
2/3 cup shredded or grated carrots
1/2 cup raisins (you can do less but I love me some raisins!) 

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2) Combine flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon in a small bowl
3) In a separate, larger bowl mix together the yogurt, granulated sugar, light brown sugar and vanilla. 
4) Add the egg and orange zest to the yogurt bowl and combine well. 
5) Add the dry mix to the wet mix and stir until incorporated. 
6) Add the oats, carrots, raisins (and some nuts if you like!
7) Put 12 mounds on a pam-ed tinfoiled baking sheet (maybe 2- they spread but not too much
8) Bake for 12 to 17 minutes.
9) Enjoy!

I definitely enjoyed these- as I said before they are very nice and powerful- the orange zest really gives them an extra kick. However, due to that, I have had 2 over the past 2 days and I am kind of all cookied-out (which is quite an accomplishment- I never get cookied out- not sure I like it!)

I would starfabulously rate them as 5/10 (this is with all my tweaks, I bet they would have been very different with the oil and the dark sugar and maybe some nuts!).  They are good- but not good enough for me to need to lock my cabinet.  They stayed on a plate on my kitchen counter all day and it was NBD.  Still- I did enjoy them ALOT and the idea of putting veggies into my cookie and having it still taste good really had me going!

Star Fabulous Rating: 5/10

What is your favorite seasonal fruit or veggie to try and sneak into a nom-nom.com baked good?

Friday, June 24, 2011

For Your Birthday- I Grew You a Cat

Hi Guys!! So for those of you who noticed I was MIA yesterday its because it was my birthday! Woot! Birthday Birthday!

I had one of those days where the little things truly made everything perfect.  My co-workers brought me to a fabulous lunch and gave me cupcakes from Crumbs- NOM.  I got a hilarious card that looks like this 

and Mama Nay Nay and Faj bought me a beautiful bamboo. If you knew my boss at all you would understand the hilariousness of him picking this card for my birthday... but then again you don't.. soooo moving on!

For those of you who live in this area, you know that it was kind of a dreary day but no worries. With the help of Ms. Amy and the lovely Degie and D, the evening deffinitly started off on the right foot- Pizza slices at the famous Gotham Pizza on the Upper East Side.  If you haven't been there, you need to go. The slices are amazing and pretty much any fast food restaurant that also serves fountain soda works for me! 
I wish this was a picture of my pizza but again, bad blogger so I sniped it from here but it is a quite accurate image of what I consumed.

We later went to Dorrians (eh-not fab) and then D and I had and amazing stumbleupon moment.  While walking to the subway to go to the Gramercy Theater for what turned out to be an amazing night of fabulous concerting we were chatting about In & Out Burger because I have never been and D, in her West-coastiness was appalled that I didn't go with Faj last summer when we drove the coast.  Either way, she started chatting about how much she would give her left arm for Shake Shack.  After yelping, hopstopping and giggling on the street corner we eventually gave up our search seeing as all of our technological devices were telling us to throw in the towel.  Set on Duane Reading for some Sour Patch Kids, we walked 2 steps (nope not 2 blocks, legit 2 steps) and what did we see but this!
 Well not actually that because again, I stink at remembering to take pics but this person stumbled upon that and its pretty similar to what we saw :)

Yes, the birthday Gods were looking down on me. 

This pretty much made my birthday.Yes there was amazing concerting afterward into the wee hours of the morning (and yes I am up and at work at 8:35 in spite of it), but that is another post for another time.

Funny how the simple things in life seem to make everything so much better.  Well, saving up my energy for this weekend's celebration festivities.  Sissy K is helping to throw me a party of which I know NO details.  I am a planner so as you might assume- I am stressed.  Sure its going to be fab!

What did you guys do on your bday this year?