Category Archives: Recipes that Fuel

Product Review: Plant Fusion Protein (Vegan & Gluten/Soy Free)!

I first read about Plant Fusion on Alex’s blog and wanted to give it a shot (as I promised myself I would incorporate protein into my diet for recovery after long runs and/or heavy training)!

Plant Fusion graciously sent me 4 sample’s to try: Chocolate, Chocolate Raspberry, Vanilla and Unflavored. I tried two of the packages before I got hurt and two when i started running again! This review is being done way too long after the company sent me the product!

I tried each package in a different way so I could see how I liked it the best as well as what is easiest and still tasted well.

  • I tried the Vanilla by mixing it with water in a Blender bottle. I followed the directions on the package for the amount of water to use. I found myself needing to add more water to get the protein powder to mix appropriately but it did not have a powdery taste and I enjoyed it! Note: Taken after a 17mi long run
  • I mixed the chocolate raspberry with soy milk in the same Blender bottle. As with the vanilla and the water, I did have to add a little more soy milk. Same great taste with the consistency of chocolate milk! Note: Taken after an 8mi tempo run and a strength workout
  • I blended the chocolate flavor with almond milk and ice and a bit of almond butter. Basically this was a delicious milkshake that I want all of the time. Note: Taken after a very long bike ride
  • I blended the unflavored protein with vanilla soy milk and ice. This was the only sample that had a powdery taste to it (but still able to drink it without complaints)! However, I do think it would be great to use it for baked goods and protein pancakes! Note: Taken after an 18mi long run

plantfusionstats Source

So how did I feel after taking the protein? I was absolutely less sore and recovered faster than on days I did not take anything.

I am new to proteins so I am not 100% positive what all of the ingredients do to help with recovery. Plant Fusion contains 21g of protein, 4,500mg BCAAs and 3,350 mg of Glutamine per package (or scoop, if using the big tub). I did a little internet research and read that BCAAs (branch chain amino acids) are important to your diet as your body does not manufacture them on its own. BCAAs are important for recovery and muscle development. Glutamine is another amino acid that the body produces to support the immune, digestive and nervous system. Because Plant Fusion contains both amino acids, you will not need to supplement either with another any pills or powder! Winner!

I will definitely be ordering some more of the protein!

If you would like to contact them/order the product, their information is as follows:

Website: http://plantfusion.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/PlantFusion-Plant-Protein/111362225604078

Twitter: @plantfusion

These opinions are my own. Plant Fusion provided me with the product to sample and to review for my readers. I was not compensated beyond product samples for this post. I am not a certified nutritionist.  I am sharing my thoughts based on experience and research.

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Meatless Monday A to Z (Dates!)

Following my extreme tardiness on the recipe challenge, I made this snack exactly one week after it was due. Just like last week, I had never cooked with dates so I went to the handy world-wide web, and more specifically, to one of my favorite vegan recipe blogs, Oh She Glows. Angela had a perfect recipe for 5 Ingredient No Bake Vegan Dates Squares!

You can find the ingredients and directions on her website as well as below – recipe was copied from her site!! I did not change one thing when I made the bars, except I used a pan that was too big, I did not have an 8×8 pan and I used tin foil, go figure!

Ingredients

Crust:

  • 1.5 cups whole raw almonds
  • 1.5 cups regular oats
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 10 Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil

Date filling:

  • 25 Medjool dates, pitted and roughly chopped (~2.5 cups)
  • 1/2 cup water

Directions

1. Line a square pan (8 in x 8 in) with two pieces of parchment paper going opposite ways. In a food processor, process the almond, salt, and oats until a fine crumble forms. Now add in the dates and process until crumbly again. Melt the coconut oil and add to the mixture and process until sticky. You can add a tiny bit more oil if the dough is too dry. Remove from processor, set aside 3/4 cup of the mixture for later, and press the rest of the mixture very firmly and evenly into the pan.

2. Grab your pitted and roughly chopped dates and water and process in the food processor until a paste forms. You will have to stop and scrape down the sides of the bowl often. You can add a tiny bit more water if needed, but you want the paste quite thick. Scoop out the date mixture onto the crust and gently spread with the back of a wet spatula until even.

3. Sprinkle on the 3/4 cup of mixture you set aside and gently press down with fingers. Refrigerate in the fridge until firm for at least 1 hour, preferably overnight. Cut into squares and serve. Store in the fridge or freezer.

Waiting to cool!

Final Product!

So what did I think? Delicious. What did I do wrong? I used the wrong size pan and I used tin foil. When I cut the squares, the cut the tin foil on the squares. Obviously that would happen. In general I absolutely loved them, they were very simple (5 ingredients, helloooo!). The only thing that took a long time was cutting up 35 dates, but I will definitely be making them again!

Please visit Better With Veggies for the recipe link up for other recipes with dates and check back some other time (will most likely not be a Monday) for the next featured ingredient!

Meatless Monday A to Z (Capers!)

 

I cooked this meal on Thursday, but its ok because every single day for me is meatless (and I would be rather useless if I gave up after the letter B and had 24 weeks left of the recipe challenge).

I have never cooked with capers, the only thing I knew about them was that I liked them and that they are salty. After going to the grocery store and looking for capers for 35 minutes I learned they are in the international aisle and that they are expensive ($5.49 for a small bottle). Please let me know if I overpaid. i probably did, I always do.

I decided to make TOFU PICCATA (it was the only thing I knew how to make with capers, good job traveling outside your comfort zone Ashley).

Ingredients (for 2 people)

  • 1/2 block organic extra firm tofu
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 4 tablespoons sunflower oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons capers (drained)
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup white wine (Sauvignon Blanc is the best)
  • 3/4 cup vegetable broth
  • chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoon Earth Balance (or butter substitute)
  • fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup plain cous cous
  • 1 cup water

Directions

Tofu:

  • Preheat oven to 300
  • Stand tofu block up and cut in half lengthwise (each side to be 1/2 inch thick). Continue by cutting each piece into triangles, you should have 8 total.
  • Press tofu between paper towels to dry (this helps the tofu stay firm when cooking)
  • Pour wheat flour on a plate and coat all sides of the tofu
  • In a frying pan (deep is suggested), heat 2-3 tablespoons of the sunflower oil and cook each side of the tofu for 3-4 minutes (or until golden brown).
  • Transfer to baking sheet (I always cover with tin foil to avoid a mess) and place in oven to keep warm.

tofupiccata1

Sauce:

  • To the same pan, add the remaining sunflower oil, garlic, and capers and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  • Stir in the lemon juice and wine and cook for 3-4 minutes (let it reduce).
  • Add vegetable broth (let it simmer and reduce)
  • Stir in parsley, Earth Balance and pepper (all of these ingredients can be to taste!)

tofupiccata2

The cous cous only takes about one minute to prepare so do this while the sauce is simmering!

Final product!

tofupiccata3

The best thing that came from this recipe? I learned how to cook tofu in a way that I really enjoy (sliced thin and lightly pan-fried)! AUGUST GOAL ACCOMPLISHED!

Please visit Better With Veggies for the recipe link up for other delicious Caper recipes and check back (hopefully Monday) for the next featured ingredient!

Meatless Monday – A to Z (Beets!)

Monday August 12, 2012 – Beets 

I was very excited when today’s main ingredient called for beets! I have a new love for beets. They are so tasty, simple to prepare and have significant health benefits!

On the train home from work tonight, I decided to continue the trend of “let’s use whatever I have in my kitchen” for tonight’s meal! I decided I wanted to combine the beets with the tri-color quinoa that I purchased last week from the bulk section in Whole Foods, sweet potato, and tempah to make some sort of hash!

Beet and Sweet Potato Quinoa Hash

Ingredients (for 2 people)

  • 1 cup quinoa (rinsed)
  • 1.5 cups organic vegetable stock
  • 3 beets
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • 2 teaspoons sunflower oil
  • organic tempah (I used Trader Joe’s)
  • white wine vinegar (to sauté tempah)
  • kosher salt
  • pepper

Directions

Potatoes:

  • Preheat oven to 425
  • Cut sweet potato into small pieces (about 1 inch) and mix in sunflower oil and salt
  • Spread on a thin baking sheet and bake for 40 minutes (flip halfway through)

Beets:

  • Wash the beet (no need to peel)
  • Cut the stems to within 1/2 inch. Cut off the root.
  • Submerge entire beet in boiling water, simmer for approximately 35-45 minutes (depending on size)
  • When done, run under cool water and peel skin off.
  • Cut into wedges

Tempah:

I bought TJ Organic Tempah, which comes precooked. I decided to sauté it in white wine vinegar for extra flavor.

Trader Joe’s Tempah

Protein Powerhouse

Quinoa:

  • Rinse and strain (using a fine mesh strainer). Quinoa is rinsed (and sometimes soaked for up to 5 minutes) because it naturally comes with a bitter coating called saponin.
  • Boil vegetable stock and mix in rinsed quinoa. Reduce to a simmer for approximately 10-15 minutes.

Combine all ingredients together, season with pepper and enjoy!

Final Product!

Honesty time!

I usually boil the beets but today I tried to bake them (in tin foil) and failed. I did not bake them long enough so I needed to put them back in the oven. I also bought golden beets and they did not come out so well either. SO in conclusion, boil the beets. You can even cut them into smaller pieces before you boil them for a fasters cooking time!

For more Beet recipes, head over to Heather’s blog, Better With Veggies.

What is your favorite beet recipe?

Go to Chobani Soho

Note: This is a big picture post, because it has to be, because it was that good.

As most of us are huge Chobani fans, if you haven’t been to Chobani Soho yet, I am sure you heard they opened a store in NYC. It is in the corner of West Broadway and Prince Street.

Prior to heading to greek yogurt heaven, I went to a non-air conditioned, sweat fest  Vinyasa Flow class at Yoga Vida Stacy, who is equally sarcastic and hilarious as me (yes, I do think I am rather witty). After yoga, Stacy and I met up with Kristin and Beth and we had a glass of wine and chatted before the Chobani event!

I was so excited to go to the new Chobani store. They are amazing and kind for inviting so many bloggers to the store to taste test their creations!

We were greeted by Emily, who started off the night by explaining a bit about Chobani’s history and foundations.

Dar then took the floor for the remainder of the evening.

We learned of Hamdi, the founder of Chobani, who is a Turkish immigrant that wanted to change the way people looked at yogurt in the US.

I loved the store’s design. It went with the story of Chobani completely. From the founder to the farms in upstate New York, the wooden details evoked the feel of a modern farmhouse with Mediterranean influences.

Dar explained that Chobani focuses on the quality of the ingredients, which are wholesome and natural. The only ingredients in the yogurt are milk and cultures. They do not carry sugar in the store, the dishes are sweetened with honey or agave nectar. The yogurt is delivered fresh everyday and kept at 34 degrees. Each “Creation” has a focus on one or two main ingredient/s that drives the flavor and taste.

Over the course of the night, we were fortunately served all 9 homemade creations for tasting!

Top: Pistachio + Chocolate

Bottom: Plain Chobani + Cucumbers

Top: Blueberry + Power

Bottom: Seasonal Fruit + Granola

Top: Plain Chobani + Olive Oil

Bottom: Peanut Butter + Jelly

and my favorites……

Toasted Coconut + Pineapple  The shredded coconut was massive and paired so well with the hazelnuts! This creation literally made me feel like I was on vacation.

WINNER! Fig + Walnut – I love figs. They are so sweet and the texture is so unique! When paired with the walnuts and the yogurt, it was instantly satisfying. I snack on walnuts and yogurt often, so I will absolutely be adding figs to the mixture in the near future (like tomorrow, since I bought figs last night).

We definitely embarked on a flavor journey at Chobani Soho.

They also have a “Mediterranean Pantry” with a variety of Turkish nuts, honey and olive oil imported from Greece so you can make your own Chobani creations at home. Mine will never be as creative or as tasty but I will give it a shot.

I will start with the awesome Turkish Hazelnuts I received in the goodie bag they gave all of us.

Huge Chobani bonus:

They sell water and donate 100% of the proceeds to the Shepherd’s Gift Foundation, which funds clean drinking water projects. I love charity.

You should go visit the store and try each creation. Every single one was splendid.

If you would like more information, visit them:

**Don’t forget to enter my PRO Compression sock giveaway! It ends Wednesday Aug 15!**