Showing posts from February, 2013

Baked Veggie Ziti

Italian food is by far my favorite of the foods genres.  This week I was loving some superb pasta dishes.  I should have been born in Italy.  But, since I wasn't I just try to cook Italian food as much as possible. Here is my awesome (and healthy-ish) baked ziti recipe.

Ingredients 12oz uncooked ziti pasta (or other pasta-i.e. I used rotini because it is what I had on hand)  3/4cup low fat ricotta  3/4cup of cheese (preferably mozzarella)  2tbs nutritional yeast (adjust if not using cheese)  1/2 large zucchini 1/2 large tomato 1cup unsalted tomato sauce  2 gloves of garlic (chopped finely)  Salt- to taste Pepper- to taste Onion Powder- to taste Oregano- to taste  Olive Oil- enough to sauté veggies 
Directions: Preheat oven to 400F.  In a medium pan, boil pasta until it is almost al dente(do NOT overcook).  Then, drain pasta and rinse with cold water, set aside.  Fill the bottom of a small skillet with some olive oil.  Sauté veggies and garlic until lightly browned.  While doing thi…

Thursday Thoughts: 02/21/2013

Hola Readers!!

I am sharing my Thursday Thoughts, aka whatever I am thinking, with you this week.  It isn't anything too terribly interesting.  But, it is the basics of my little adventure here on the last frontier.

1.)  Weather in Alaska RULES compared to what my friends back home are dealing with.  My parents (Northern IL) are enjoying arctic temperatures while my college friends (Southern IL) are getting pelted with a snowstorm (insert evil laughter here).  I love being able to laugh about our 40F days and occasionally perfect winter weather while everyone down south is buried in snow.

2.)  I am loving Italian food right now.  I made Baked Veggie Ziti for dinner last night and I couldn't get enough of it so I ended up taking it as leftovers for lunch today.  Recipe to come!  In the meantime, enjoy some of these other great Italian food links that contributed to my creation.

Vegan Baked Ziti from
Awesome Vegan Baked Ziti from
Ooey-Gooey Baked Ziti fro…

Glacial Happenings

Cody and I spent the weekend enjoying the mild weather and playing outside.  We spent Sunday afternoon out at Mendenhall Glacier in the Tongass National Forest.  The glacier is about a twenty minute drive from our house and makes for a great weekend outing.  The views are spectacular, the wildlife sitings are plenty, and the hikes are a total workout.  We kept it leisurely this weekend and just spent a couple hours hiking out to the Glacier and Nugget Falls.

 We were pretty tired by the time we finished playing outside so we headed home.  On the way, we stopped for some coffee at our favorite local coffee shop and Cody stopped for some Subway.  We finally made it home and are tucked in for the evening enjoying Season One of Game of Thrones (S2 comes out this week so we are catching up!)  I am making some Bad A$$ Mac N' Cheese for dinner tonight.  I will post the recipe in the next day or two.  I hope everyone enjoyed the weekend!!

Did any of you have adventurous weekends?  If so,…

Kale & Tomato Strata

This week I needed something delicious, healthy, and simple to eat after work (and to take in my lunch as leftovers!).  This dish was purrrfect.  I was full, happy, and healthy.  It makes your entire house smell amazing.  I ended up sharing it with our neighbors because I couldn't eat the entire pan.  It was super filling and kept me going for hours.  Definitely suggest trying it out-especially if you are an egg lover.

Ingredients 1/3 loaf of bread (I used honey wheat, but sourdough is ideal)  1/2 tomato (large) 2-3 large kale leaves  2 eggs 2cups of greek yogurt (plain)  1/2cup of water  Onions (optional-to taste)  Garlic Powder Onion Powder Salt Pepper  Basil and/or rosemary  Parmesan Cheese  Nutritional Yeast 
Directions:  In a baking pan place bread, cubed.  Sprinkle with olive oil and broil (low) for five minutes.  Remove pan from the oven and change the temperature to 350F.  Spread tomatoes (cubed), kale (shredded), and onion slices evenly throughout the baking pan.  In a mi…

A Belated Valentines Day

Valentines Day is always a low-key affair in the Thompson-Middleton household.  Yes,  I love romance, being pampered, and all such goodies.  The truth is, Cody and I both work and every year we have been together the holiday has fallen during the workweek.  We just stick to a homemade supper, some little gifts, and spending quality time together.  This years holiday went a little something like this…..

Waking up and enjoying a little coffee with my love.  Digging some Heritage Coffee (Juneau local.)

Heading off to work on a dreary and rainy day.  Celebrating the holiday with forty kiddos all hopped up on sugar.  They made these cute-sy Valentine Monsters to collect their cards :)

Coming home to a deliciously cooked meal.  Bleu Cheese Fettucini Alfredo and some Buttermilk Biscuits (no healthy eating for this holiday!)  Cody made it so I don't know the exact recipe he used, it was UH-mazing though.

Flowers, a new cd, an incredibly romantic letter, and the promise that Game of Throne…

Weekly Reader: On The Road

"The only people for me are the made ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles…" --Jack Kerouac

Recently, I began reading On The Road (the original scroll).  I must say, Kerouac is a madman.  The original scroll is completely unedited, as Kerouac sat writing, it was then published exactly as written.  Many of us have read the edited version of On The Road.  However, if you are a fan you should read the original scroll.  It is fabulous to read it without the editing, without name changes, and exactly as Kerouac intended it to be.  Read this if you are looking for something truly adventurous to read.

Also, there is a movie version of this book coming out this holiday season.  I, personally, am excited to see it.  There are some mixed reviews from fans of the book.  But, check out the trailer for yourself. 

Weekend Eats

Here is a collection of my favorite eats this weekend.  It was a dreary weekend so I focused on hearty and healthy recipes to keep us warm, dry, and happy.

Breakfast led me to these guys all weekend.  Have any of you tried this brand of waffles? Best instant waffles I have ever had.  No guilt about eating them either.  All natural, gluten-free, no preservatives…woo!!  Just top with a little organic, low-sugar maple syrup and a little Earth Balance.  Enjoy!

I also enjoyed this delicious quiche for breakfast this weekend.  I normally don't eat much in the way of eggs but our wonderful neighbors made these and dropped them by for Cody and I.  They are fans of making me vegetarian cuisine so I am always in heaven when they bring food by!

Lunches were composed of some of these delicious options: pesto pasta, leftovers, PB&J's, and sauteed veggies with rice.

Dinners were composed of delicious vegetarian chili and my old standby of Vegan Cheesy Rice & Broccoli casserole, whi…

Musings from Juneau

Random thoughts that I have right now…

*Cody's car is DEAD.  D-E-A-D=DEAD.  This is what buying a $1500 car right after moving to Juneau will get you….four months of driving.  Oh well, on to buying a new car.

*On a more positive note.  Cody got two job offers this week!! One offer was from JYS (Juneau Youth Services) working as a counselor of sorts with a local elementary school.  He got a second job offer from the Juneau PD as a dispatcher.  Still up in the air about what he is planning to do, but either way it will be better than lousy retail.

*The sun finally came out!! We had two days of mildly sunny weather.  The clouds definitely gathered by late afternoon each day but it was still beautiful.  I love sunny days in Juneau.  Sadly, it is back to rainy for the weekend.

*Coffee is my best friend….no really, it is.

*Cody and I both started the Couch to 5K program, WOO!  Running up a storm here in the last frontier. Albeit, we are a little soggy.  Btw- I want this running vest.  …

Alaskan Fashion

Alaska and Fashion are two words that one does not often hear used in the same sentence.  For the most part Alaskans are flannel shirt, jeans, Xtratuff, and funny hat kind of people.  I used to think of myself as much more fashionable before we moved to the wonderful city of Juneau.  Now, most of my outfits have to center around practicality (i.e. will my shoes get soaked? )  So, I have come to adjust my fashion a bit.  Enjoy some of my favorite Alaskan outfits thus far.

As you can see I am attempting to develop a balance.  Can you dress cute and practical?  I say yes.  But, it is taking some time for me to figure out and many of my favorite pieces are basically unwearable right now.  Oh well,  this is one big adventure, right??

Healthy Lunches

Eating lunch at work (and packing a lunch every night) can be a real drag.  I almost envy those people who are totally ok with eating fast food/unhealthy snack food for lunch everyday.  I really do envy people who can go home for lunch every day.  Packing a lunch everyday is tedious and boring. Planning has to be done, preparations have to be made, and cooking has to be done.  And, who really has the energy to do EXTRA cooking in the evening after cooking dinner and possibly making breakfast preparations for the next day??  Certainly not this girl.  So, I have devised a lunch system that has started to be fairly successful. I just stick to it everyday and the packing and prep work tends to go pretty quickly. 
Morning Snack Fruit (apple, orange, banana, grapes, etc) or Greek Yogurt  
Lunch Main meal:  Leftovers (if it is something easily re-heatable), sandwich, pasta salad (M-W when prepared on the weekend),  or microwavable organic soup.  
Secondary: Salad, veggies and dip,  half of a s…

Rainy Day Coffee and Snacks

This week the weather has been bad abysmal!  Mother nature is confusing.  It has been raining and thirty.  I normally don't mind the rain, but weeks of it without reprieve gets a little depressing.  Here is the one beautiful picture I was able to take this week (during our twenty minutes of somewhat-sun).  The rest of them were just icky and rainy.

To combat the rainy weather I needed something sweet and warm to drink this morning.  Regular coffee was NOT going to cut through my rainy day blues.  So I tried out something a little different with my coffee.  Future barista?  I think so.

Delicious Coffee Recipe
1 steaming cup of coffee
1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream
1tsp of powdered sugar
Dash of cinnamon

Topping:  Whip heavy whipping cream and powdered sugar together until it thickens.  Pour (small amount) into steaming cup of delicious coffee.  Top with cinnamon.  Makes enough for the entire pot of coffee.

Mmmmm…..who doesn't love a steaming cup of coffee?

Another of my rainy …