baked scallops with kale and enoki mushrooms in cheesy sauce
1 slice homemade cinnamon cake
1 dark chocolate Lindt ball + strawberries
*UPDATED* WATER: 3 liters + innumerable little cups of green tea and other teas
- Missing my boyfriend :( “Come back sooner!!!” He said today during our Skype chat. “You think I don’t want to???” I replied.) So I am now here, spending all day doing my loaded assignments, secretly hoping if I get things done early, time will fly faster (when I know deep down it won’t).
- I’m craving for a big, crunchy, chilled Fuji apple right now.
honey-orange glazed broiled sea bass with kale over cheesy sauce
WATER: 2 liters + innumerable little cups of green tea and other teas
- Last night, I baked a very simple cinnamon cake. We all have a sweet tooth. I currently ran out of fresh fruits at home, so when this kind of thing happens, I bake a cake that I know I can trust. Why? Well… It’s healthy and I’m not guilty at every bite. I always make these kind of cakes with lots of honey, cacao powder and flaxseeds just to fill myself up and to satiate cravings for sweet things. Just because this time I don’t have honey in the house, I used agave nectar.
For the dry ingredients, I mixed 4 cups spelt flour, 1 1/2 cup coconut palm sugar, 1 cup golden flaxseeds, 1 cup sesame seeds, and 1 tablespoon chocolate whey protein powder. For wet ingredients, I mixed 2 eggs, 1/3 c vanilla soymilk, 3 tablespoons light agave nectar, and 1/3 c black coffee. Then I mixed everything in a large bowl, then sprinkle 1 tablespoon ginger powder, a generous amount of cinnamon powder, and 1 teaspoon sea salt to stir until everything blends. On a foiled round pan I brushed the bottom with coconut oil and its sides. I sprinkled strawberries and blueberries on the brushed pan before I pour the whole mixture into it. Then I put it in a 400 degrees F pre-heated oven. Waited for 30 minutes and I let it cool for about 10 minutes, before I sprinkled cacao powder on top of the cake.
- Again, I didn’t feel like filling up my stomach after an amazing experiment I had in the kitchen this late afternoon preparing the sea bass. It was a major success, a time well-spent experimenting on something risky (because more than 50% of the time, I didn’t know what I was doing). t think this might be a signature recipe I’ll pass down to my kids or something. I’m posting the recipe in a minute, so bear with me! For sure I’ll make this again and again, especially to my family, my boyfriend and his family, and other loved ones of mine! *So excited*
Recently, I’ve noticed reduced redness of my old acne scars and generally a more even skin tone. The usual redness now becomes a pink glow. The whiteness of my eyes are clear white, which is not usually the case. It almost always has some red veins surrounding the iris, just because I’m a daily contact lens wearer. Anyway, I think I have to thank ABC soup, tons of mangoes, and kale and sweet potato for all this.
Vitamin A is an antioxidant responsible for good vision, sun protection for the skin, and for erasing signs of aging (wrinkles, scars, etc). Most anti-blemish and anti-aging beauty products contain the retinoid and/or retinyl palmitate forms of vitamin A, which helps to clear acne and reduce inflammation of the skin. Although this increases the skin’s sensitivity to the sun, eating a good amount of vitamin A-rich foods will help in maintaining the health of your eyes and skin.
The following list of foods are things I have in my pantry for the past couple of weeks, and these happen to be foods I don’t usually eat (except for mangoes and sweet potatoes for my regular sweet tooth). But more importantly, these foods are rich in vitamin A.
Just 1 piece of raw carrot contains 5,411 IU of vitamin A, which exceeded the daily RDA of 3,000 IU. What’s more, if you slice this piece of carrot into pieces till it fills half a cup, then put it into boiling water, the vitamin A content rises up to 22,567 IU. That’s huge nutrition for so little calories.
2. Sweet potatoes
Love the purple ones. They’re sweeter than the orange kinds!
This is one of my favorite snacks. Somehow I don’t need anything else after eating soft, mashed, cooked sweet potatoes. One cup of it gives you 21,909 IU, more than enough for a day’s needs. Sweet potatoes are not only delicious, but they also fill you up with fiber and protect the health of your skin. These yams are also high in vitamin C, which increases your body’s collagen production and helps smoothing out wrinkles.
Ah, my favorite snack. I normally buy the sliced package from Walgreens. I confess: Until now, I still don’t know how to slice a mango. But I’m willing to buy expensive packages of sliced mangoes just to satisfy my cravings for it. My sweet tooth constantly seeks either mangoes or chocolate. Anyway, 1 cup of sliced mangoes contains 1,262 IU. I personally overeat 3 cups at once, because it tastes so good. Just one small mango can provide you with a quarter of your daily RDA of vitamin C too.
Although I eat enough variety of vegetables, I seldom include tomatoes in my pantry. However, since I’ve recently made my ABC soup, I’ve grown to love it (the cooked kind, I don’t like it raw). A cup of raw ones serves you with 1,262 IU, although, like carrots, the vitamin A contents will increase significantly when you boil them.
I just freeze them so that they’ll last longer.
For leafy greens, I usually prefer spinach to kale, just because kale is crunchier and more bitter. However, like tomatoes and carrots, vitamin A content rises when boiled. Half a cup of boiled kale contains 9,558 IU of vitamin A. I like it boiled just because it loses its crunchiness and bitterness. I only like the bitterness when kale is in the form of kale chips. There are plenty of people out there who consumes kale in their juices and smoothies. So that’s another way to make this nutritious vegetable tasty.
Mix 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 1 tablespoon virgin coconut oil (liquefied/heated), and 6 drops of lavender essential oil together. Massage scalp with about a small amount (about 2 peas) of the mixture. Massage long enough until entire hair is thoroughly coated with it. As it turns greasy, fit entire hair into a shower cap and leave the oils to absorb into the scalp for 10 to 15 minutes.
Do this twice a week before you wash your hair, as it significantly improves hair texture and controls shine.
Leave the remaining mixture for future use. Just this amount was enough for one whole month for me.
Olive oil accounts for the hair’s glow, coconut oil for its smoothness, and lavender oil to calm your head from daily stress, so as to prevent roots from damaging.
Almost the end of June, now. Everyone else is dreading the day when they’ll have to pay the rent. Me? I can’t wait.
It’ll be my last rent check and I will be off in August.
By the by, I mentioned that I will be having 2 open house hours this week in my previous post. However, I only had the first and so many people were committed to the place that on that very day, my place has been rented out.
Now I can feel less anxious throughout the semester outside school. Originally I thought I am going to be busy throughout July dealing with school and finding new tenants for my landlord after I leave. But turns out that it’s that simple. Thank God.
Also, looking back at the past 6 months, I can count how many times I visited the gym by counting my blog posts. The last time I visited the gym wasn’t this one, though. It was the evening right before my boyfriend arrived at SFO, which was on April 2. I remember very clearly I had the most intense workout of the year that evening. Although it’s just the usual elliptical machine for 30 minutes, my intensity level goes up the most at 30. Which is insane. I know if I didn’t work out that day, I would’ve gained 2 kg by the time he went back home to Jakarta, instead of the 1.5 kg I gained. So it was well worth it. Then, during the first week or the second week of May, I quitted the gym. I didn’t bother anymore because it was my finals week and the week before I participated in my graduation ceremony. Then my parents were here and everything… So my life itself at that time was a workout.
Then, although I didn’t keep a log here, in the last couple of weeks I’ve been jogging a little outside, just around the block. I realized my fitness levels are steadily declining, despite having a lower body weight than I had when I was working out. I guess I eat less and sleep more now, both of which are responsible for the lower body weight. Generally less appetite too.
But I promised myself (and the gym managers) that once I’m back in Jakarta, I will be jumping on the wagon again. My brain desperately needs a routined workout schedule for the previous 3 or so months. So before that day comes, I just want to inform readers that I’ll be logging my workouts the same way I’m logging my food diary today too – neat, clean, simple. Why? Well… Honestly, I like to read stuff with simple formats (Who doesn’t?). So now reading back all my gym-visit entries, it all feels like a blur 0.0
Keeping my brain fit has been a lifelong promise I’ve made since the last 3 to 4 years ago – to eat healthy and keep myself fit. Well, of course at that time I was still focusing on the short-term goal – losing weight and be my tiniest – now it’s all changed. However, I really feel I’ve adopted a different characteristic ever since I’ve made this decision. I’ve never been the athletic type for all my life. I always skipped P.E. classes and have always eaten anything I wanted (mostly I eat what my mother feeds me, like apples and eggs everyday, and other foods are just lots of green tea and chocolate, which I naturally liked since I was very young). So I was that skinny girl who could never gain weight. But I was always the shy type, not the straight-A girl, not the most popular, and certainly not the prettiest. Also known as low self-esteem.
Until now I also admit that I still have low self-esteem. However, making healthy decisions actually gave me confidence to believe in my own worth, and that gave me a sense of control over certain aspects of my life. I think it’s not coincidence that I met a man in my life who fits the criteria I’ve been carrying around all these years (and that feeling is mutual). I’ve only realized this after the way he said to me that I’m the exact thing he asked for from God. To me, he’s too good to be true, and I’m lucky. He’s the best.
However, remember that on the first day of this year, I mentioned about the challenge with my boyfriend? (Sayang, inget ya aku dah lg menang). Even though I don’t compare very well with other fitness enthusiasts out there in terms of my consistency (judging from the irregular gym visits)… I still fare much better than my boyfriend… You can’t deny that!!! It’s a fact, not an accusation! Okay honey?
Nick Vujicic, author of “Life Without Limits”.
Motivation is a very tricky thing. Short-term motivation is getting ready for bikini season. Long-term motivation is growing and nurturing my genes so that my children will be super healthy, happy, smart, and beautiful. Haha.
Seriously. Why do you think at my innocent age of 22, I keep wanting to learn how to cook dishes with the healthiest possible ingredients without leaving out a good taste? I’ve failed at blueberry clafouti (twice), which was why I never posted their recipes. If you notice, I rarely upload dessert recipes, because I don’t keep butter at home (that little devil hurts the brain like red meat). Of course a little bit is fine, cacao butter is awesome. Still, everyday I still prefer apples and eggs, and I hope my kids will be smart enough to hold their temptation before reaching for the marshmallows when mommy is not around (If you’re not informed, please take a quick read about Stanford University’s marshmallow experiment).
I learned that smart people have short-term goals and long-term dreams. I think all those goals and dreams are the sum of each person’s unique definition of what we all call Motivation.