Two birds with one (Silver)stone.

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My quest to read through my TBR pile continues!

I’ve had The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone since 2010 and while I had skimmed it before, I had never read it all the way through. I think I was intimidated by it. At first glance the recipes just seemed a little too hardcore for me. So I stuck the book on a shelf and just sort of ignored it for…oh, five years.

One of my New Year’s resolutions this year, however, was to read a book about veganism and since I already had this one, I decided to give it a fair shot. I’m glad I did! It was a good read, very informative and inspiring. While I am still not ready to commit to becoming a full-on vegan, I feel like I can at least try to eat that way a lot more of the time.

So far I have tried two of Alicia’s recipes: Sweet Potato-Lentil Stew (page 166) and Sicilian Collard Greens with Raisins and Pine Nuts (page 176). I liked them both, although the stew recipe made a TON. I ate left-overs for days and still wasn’t able to finish it all :(. So yeah, I will make it again some time but probably only half the recipe. The photo above shows some of the leftovers served over brown rice. This was my first time cooking collards and I have to say they were pretty tasty!

Now I can cross a resolution off my list AND knock another title off my TBR pile. Win-win!

Speaking of the TBR pile…I’ve made some decent progress since first posting about my (crazy) dream of getting down to five TBR*:

  • May was not such a great month — I bought 10 books. BUT — I read 5 of them right away (as well as 3 others that I already had).
  • In June I bought 2 books and read one right away (as well as 4 older ones and one of the 5 new purchases I’d had left over from the end of May).
  • In July I’ve bought 6 books (2 of which I’m not counting as TBRs because I have already read them before and only bought them because the e-book editions were super cheap and I wanted to have them). Of the remaining, I read 1 and just started another. So that leaves 2 additions to the TBR pile this month. BUT I also read 6 more titles from my TBR pile!

*Bottom line:  I’ve bought approximately 38 books this year and read 52. Not great, but at least the numbers are moving in the right direction :). And yes, I realize that this (having too many books to read) is a pretty cushy “problem” to have. I’m not really complaining, just trying to remind myself to use and appreciate what I already have, and to be intentional about how and what I buy in the future!

Preliminary results of my diet “experiment”

So last week I decided not to eat any dairy for 4 1/2 days, while S was away on a business trip. I ate a lot of the same things over and over (nothing new for me — I tend to get hooked on things and end up repeating them pretty often :)).

I had oatmeal with almond milk and fruit for breakfast almost every day, and a hummus sandwich for lunch. Snacks were fruit and/or nuts. Dinner was leftovers or a big salad, plus one night I made half a batch of one of my favorite vegan dishes, Pineapple Not-so-Fried Rice.

tofu rice cropped

Look at all that raisin, cashew, tofu and pineapple deliciousness (also, I used brown rice instead of white). I could eat this for days. Which is good, because even half a batch of this stuff makes quite a bit! S and I had the leftovers over the weekend and I finished them up at lunch today.

When S returned from his trip, we had homemade Margherita pizza (with mozzarella cheese) for dinner :). But over the weekend, I continued to limit the dairy and now, 8 days later I have to say I feel pretty good! I don’t know how to describe it other than to say I feel “lighter.” Not as…puffy, I guess? I wasn’t so much trying to lose weight, though, as I was just trying to gauge how differently, if at all, I felt by not eating dairy. Because it seems as though people who cut dairy out of their diets always say they feel “great” afterward. And darn it, I want to feel great, too :)!

I have vegan dinners planned for the next 3 nights as well, so I’m going to continue on this track for now and see what happens…just in time to ruin it all by eating Christmas cookies next week, I’m sure. But, hey I think this might still be a good habit for me to carry into the new year!

Going vegan…for the next few days, anyway.

avocados croppedTell me that isn’t what you love to see when you slice open an avocado?! I may have actually said the word, “perfect!” out loud when I saw it. Which was fine, because my husband is out of town on business for a few days so there was no one around to hear me being weird :).

While S is away, I’ve decided to experiment a bit with my diet, just to see how I feel. I already don’t eat meat (and haven’t forever), but I’m not going to have any eggs or dairy, either, until he comes back on Friday night. And I’m going to try and limit the refined sugar, too.

So for lunch today I had this lovely sandwich:

hummus sandwich croppedThat’s a vegan bread I was happy to find at the grocery store, called The King’s Bread from Silver Hills Bakery, topped with hummus, red pepper flakes, avocado, tomato, and some baby spinach spring mix.

I got the idea for the red pepper flakes from this post at Oh She Glows. It never would have occurred to me otherwise, to put them on there, or how tasty they would end up being. I’m officially hooked. I just wish I’d remembered to add the sea salt and pepper mentioned in the OSG post, too, because that sounds so good :(. (I have no pesto but that sounds like it’d be amazing, too). Maybe tomorrow! Because, seriously, I think I might be able eat this every day for the rest of my life. It was that good.

BTW, the leftover avocado will make it’s way into guacamole I plan to have for dinner along with some leftover tofu and veggie fajitas, rice and beans I’ve got sitting in my fridge.

What are y’all eating?

Elizabeth