Daikon and Carrot Soup

Something about the leaving winter is making me really crave warm soups. Yum ^_^!

It especially helps due to the fact that I was not feeling good this morning– stomachache and all… :(

Luckily, my brain was a storming and I recreated a traditional vegetable soup that my mom always made me. It’s memories in a bowl I tell you…

It’s like playing with legos. Man… I love those painful blocks so much. Even if I’m not really from THAT era when they were the bomb, I still never hear about them these days.

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While this is a vegetable soup, I did add chicken; it would still be delicious without it tho (or with some yummy tofu!)

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Time: 45 minutes

Servings: 3-4

Ingredients:

  • daikon (1/2 medium)
  • carrots (2-3 medium)
  • shredded napa cabbage (1 cup)
  • bok choy (1 cup)
  • onion (1/2 cup)
  • dried shiitake mushroom (4-6)
  • water (4 cups)
  • black pepper (1/8 TSP)
  • white pepper (1/8 TSP)
  • garlic granules  (1/8 TSP)

Optional:

  • salt – the daikon/dried mushroom give it a TON of flavor, but I did notice when I ate it a second time, that a little added salt tasted pretty yummy too :)
  • black beans– in an effort to not let those go bad, I added some for dinner and it tasted pretty darn good! (extra protein! +1)

Instructions:

1. Place pot on stove with added water and begin to boil on HIGH.

2. Slice/dice the carrots and daikon into relatively large blobs. You can first skin them, but I personally don’t mind the skin… and extra fiber!

3. Cut the cabbage and bok choy into relatively small slivers (make sure to separate the stem and leaves of the bok choy) and finely chop the onion.

4. Add the carrots and daikon first to the boiling water and cover after the water boils for about 3 minutes.

5. Turn the heat to MEDIUM after it boils for 3 minutes and let simmer for 10 minutes.

6. Add the dried mushroom, cabbage, bok choy STEMS, and onions. Stir occasionally. Cover pot again and let simmer for about 5-8 minutes.

7. Add the chicken next. MAKE SURE to stir the chicken and veggies around to let the chicken fully cook inside and out! Let boil for 2-3 minutes.

8. Turn the heat to LOW.

9. Add the bok choy leaves last since the leaves cook the fastest. Wait about 10 more minutes.

10. Season using all the spices. Stir the soup once again.

11. Turn the heat back to HIGH. Once the water starts to bubble, turn the heat completely off.

YUMMIES IN MY TUMMIES!!

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The chicken should be scrumptiously cooked and the daikon/carrots oh sooooo tender!

Vegetarian Black Bean Chili

Happy Friday!

I’m growing sadder and sadder by the day because the holiday season is officially OVAH!  Nevertheless, it is a new year right? ^.^

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So while I was in California, I began to REALLY start craving chili!!!! Maybe because one of my new goals is to start varying my meals, I really wanted a simple soup/chowder/chili concoction. (I promise it is yummy! :D)

I ALSO needed to open up the cans of black beans that I had sitting in my cupboard for like half a year… whoops. (Another case of blog reading syndrome)

This chili is yummy and while I made the basic of the basic version, there are a bajillion ways to spice it up!

I feel tomatoes make EVERYTHING better…..

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If you want a soupier chili, add water or more broth during the cooking process, but I liked it a little drier.

Perfect for a cold day and a grumbling belly, you get to easily fill up on veggies with a warm blend of veggies and the nutty, chewy flavor of the beans… heaven.

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The veggies (minus the cabbage)

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Goodness is cooking…..
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Don’t forget the SECRET INGREDIENT!

Serves: 1 

Time: 45 minutes

Ingredients: 

  • tomato (1)
  • carrots (2 small sticks/1 large)
  • shredded napa cabbage (1/3 cup)
  • garlic glove (1)
  • onion (1/5)– I prefer white, but it really is whatever floats your duckie
  • low-sodium vegetable broth (1/4-1/2 cup)
  • greek yogurt (1 TBSP)
  • no salt added black beans (1/4 cup)
  • dried daikon (1/4 cup)– SECRET INGREDIENT!!!!
  • cayenne pepper (1/8 TSP)– more or less depending on your taste
  • paprika (2 sprinkles)
  • onion powder (1/8 TSP)
  • garlic granules/powder (1/4 TSP)– <3 garlic
  • black pepper (2 sprinkles)
  • garlic & herb blend (1/8 TSP)
  • salt (1-2 sprinkles)

Optional:

I didn’t add these, but I think this chili would taste even better with…

  • tomato paste
  • sun-dried tomatoes (sliced)
  • fire-roasted bell peppers
  • fire-roasted tomatoes

Instructions:

1. Start heating pan on HIGH.

2. Dice up/slice carrots, tomato, onion, and garlic clove. Set aside.

3. “Stir-fry” the carrots, tomato, onion, and garlic for about 5-8 minutes or until partially tender. You can use olive oil/canola oil, but personally, I don’t like the added oily feel so I just add either water/broth and cook my veggies this way. 

4. Turn the heat to MEDIUM.

5. Add the vegetable broth and stir veggies.

6. Spoon in the greek yogurt and black beans. Make sure to stir the mixture.

7. Turning heat to LOW, cover the pan and wait for the broth and veggies to simmer for about 10 minutes. Check up every 2-4 minutes and add water if necessary to prevent the chili from becoming TOO dry.

8. Stir in the various spices except for salt and cayenne pepper.

9. After the 10 minutes, sprinkle in some of the daikon, drop in the cabbage, and add the cayenne pepper. Personally, the salt is optional and add it after tasting the chili. The broth generally gives it a soothing savory taste that I adore!

10. Let simmer for another 3-5 minutes (or until the cabbage is softened) and then turn off the heat.

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PURE LOVE! :)

Do you like soupier soups?

Are tomatoes your thang? 

What soups/chowders/chilis have you been enjoying and would recommend?

Happy New Year + Blogger Goals!

First and foremost…. HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Generally I always stay up till twelve, but this year I was strangely snuggly in my hotel bed by 10. This is especially wacky cause my usual bedtime is 2!?!?!?! California time…. What are you doing to me!?!?!

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so lovely! ^_^

I started my last vacation day of course with this beauty!

And yes, if you’re wondering, I did bring sweet potatoes with me on my trip to keep my sanity…… >.<

To somewhat attempt and join the 2014 blogger challenge, I will be telling you guys of my blog goals this year!

One definite goal is to join up on two of my absolutely favorite link ups.

By the lovely Peas and Crayon! http://www.peasandcrayons.com/p/what-i-ate-wednesday.html
By the lovely Peas and Crayon!
http://www.peasandcrayons.com/p/what-i-ate-wednesday.html

AND…. the new *drumroll*

Thinking-Out-Loud
By the equally (or more) amazing Amanda at Running with Spoons! http://www.runningwithspoons.com/thinking-out-loud/

Goal number 2! Does anyone want to see more of my puppy Ellington? He’s kind of begging me to have him show up more….

How could you say no to THIS face?
How could you say no to THIS face?

Write posts frequently…. (just gonna breeze past this one…. )

AND…. give updates on my own personal journal for the year! This is actually more of a personal resolute/goal/whatever…. that I want to do this year! I have always wanted to keep my own journal, but laziness and inability to keep promises to myself have always led to a first-few-pages-filled journal then… emptiness.

Hopefully, my new adorable journal will keep me motivated!

If only I could pick one...
If only I could pick one…

This will also be part of my goal to join in on Amanda’s goal again this year cause I’m loving it! Just… I’m gonna put my own little twist mwahahahaha!!!!

Happy 2014 guys!

Here’s the adorable (yet surprisingly stinky) sea lions I saw yesterday at the beach. The highlight of my day haha!

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Reviewing the Year

Morning to a wonderful Monday! Currently I’m in Cali enjoying family! How is your Monday going? Does anyone still have time off?

It’s almost 2014!?!?!? Is anyone making any resolutions?

I’m never one to make yearly resolutions, but I’m thinking this year I may just start to write down monthly/weekly goals. To get me motivated, I’m thinking of investing in a cute journal to write down daily thoughts and whatnot….

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This will be a short post today, but I thought I should bring up a great post that I read over the year and just reread.

This article by Cassey from Blogilates is just AMAZING!

http://www.blogilates.com/blog/2013/05/02/ashamed-of-gaining-weight/

It exactly describes my worst fear of gaining weight back. Even though my head tells me it’s necessary and my body is screaming for nourishment, that ED voice echoes the fear of people looking on me and telling me I’ve gained weight….

It’s not fun, but it’s inevitable. Anyone who is also afraid of those comments must realize it’s only going to get better from now on out, not worse. Relapse is not worth the continuous damage you are putting on your body.

It has taken me awhile to realize (and I’m not sure yet if I totally get it yet too), but in order to repair your body, your body needs time to heal. Most likely, you will feel like you are only getting worse before you are getting better. Thanks Amanda! :)

Your body will feel the most vulnerable before it heals and it will push you to want to stop what progress you have made. Just keep going!

Remember you are not alone and that you want to return to a normal life loving food… not fearing it.

Make a resolution that is specific but also obtainable.

Review every few weeks and reflect on your progress.

Make sure to make checkpoints as you go and have mini goals along the way.

Find happiness your own way.

Hope you have a great Monday! I’ll leave you off with a picture of my dog Ellington who I dearly miss right now ;(

My lazy puppy
My lazy puppy

Tell me….

What goals do you have planned?

Do you write in a journal every day and reflect?

I never have in the past, but I feel like lots of people in my life have benefitted from it and I always love to have another reason to own a cute journal :p

What Saved My Life

I feel like super(wo)man today for no reason….

It may or may not be because of these pens I got for Christmas…..

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The simple joys of stationary. Does anyone else have a weird obsession with stationary? My weird craze is actually motivating me to just do like a documentary of my desk cause yes, I am that weird chick that has secretly talked to herself about her own pencils and pens…..

Do I need to remind you with another awkward selfie??

Getting back to the topic, today I also feel pretty awesome because I had a rockin’ breakfast.

Okinawan Sweet Potato w/ Apple Cinnamon Toast and Swiss + Tomatoes on Whole Grain Toast <3
Okinawan Sweet Potato w/ Apple Cinnamon Toast and Swiss + Tomatoes on Whole Grain Toast <3

I was a happy camper! :D

Like I’ve said, sweet potatoes are an obsession, and it’s bittersweet. While I know my focus is to eat healthy and balanced (hoping for those treats in between), I have had those days where I have had a sweet potato for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, AND for my two in between snacks…. Whoops……. BUT THEIR GOOD (don’t judge ;))

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Which reminds me! I’m a total carb lover. Even during my WORST ED days, I think I always had sandwiches. Can anyone else live without carbs??

Though I have to say my obsession is a bit strange, sweet potatoes truly make me giddy inside. They make my life weirdly feel whole, and because I love them, I made myself a promise to always eat them.

Life isn’t about restricting.

And I’m planning on keeping it that way. My beloved potatoes are dericious!!!! I can’t live without them. They were/are what kept me sane during my dark days. Their yummy, soft, starchy, taste give me tingles and made me realize that life is not about calories or that pesky number on the scale…. it’s about doing what you enjoy– and yes, I do have a daily sweet potato craving…. not cookies, but potatoes. It even sometimes diversifies between type of sweet potato too. Yikes… but I still love you potatoes. <3

Some people collect almond butter while others collect tubers?
Some people collect almond butter while others collect tubers?

P.S. That photo was after a week of picking at my stash.

P.P.S. I added a couple more new purple sweet potatoes that I found yesterday … no shame

Do you have a weird food obsession?

Do you share a passion for stationary?

Please tell me I’m not the only one….

Also, have you tried the Japanese (my love) or Okinawan Sweet Potato?

Truth Is….

It’s the day after Christmas… :( (Is it bad that I almost said it’s the day after Thursday??)

While I’m thankful for all my family and friends, it definitely was a stressful time. Though I have improved so much in terms of dealing with orthorexia and anorexia, I know I still have a long way to go.

No, I still didn’t enjoy steak, fries, or biscuits, BUT I did still love every moment of Christmas with the people I love.

I ate (AND continued to be a weirdo, but that’s another story).

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Awkward selfie in my comfy hat… I’m still a lovable weirdo right?

I can’t believe I have even made it THIS far in recovery, but I still have to fight for my senses every day. Especially now during the holidays, it’s even harder. It’s the holidays right? I should relax right? …If only that’s what Mr. ED could tell me. Even though I feel like I have never been better, I know I’m far from it. But ya know? That’s OK…. it’ll take time.

To tell you the truth, I thought I ate way too much on Tuesday and decided to skip dinner. I even told my family I wasn’t feeling well.

Surprise! Surprise!

Truth is? I WAS feeling unwell, but it wasn’t in my stomach.

Reality hits hard, and sometimes I only wish Mr. ED could grow a heart and not be the Grinch. Why ruin Christmas Mr. ED? Why tell me to starve myself on Christmas Eve?!

Truth is? I just needed to realize that life isn’t about the superficial things. The world needs to realize that life isn’t about looks and size.

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Looks? It won’t last.

Size? It won’t make me go to bed not dying of hunger.

Truth is? Looks and size are just like presents on Christmas– meaningless.

Sure, when you’re little, you love presents like there’s no tomorrow, but honestly, where will that treasured dollhouse or new bike go in the end– attic, garage, dump, heck, who knows cause I sold it?!?!?!

I hope people just realize that like the Grinch, people honestly don’t care about the superficial aspects of life. What matters is family and love (for yourself and others).

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and embrace themselves. Hug a tree and I’ll guarantee you’ll feel better ;)

Truth is? Let’s just say I didn’t go to bed hungry on Christmas Eve. <3

Progress: +1

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War is Over

It’s seems like each year passes faster and faster. I honestly can’t believe what changes I have gone through. Does anybody else realize that within a blink of an eye it’s going to be 2014!?!?!

More importantly, the Christmas songs on the radio are going to end… and Iwill be that one weirdo still listening to my favorites on the 26th.

ANYWAYS…. before the 1st, I have “resolved”to start on my own blog. Healthy living? Food? Family? Dogs? …. Sweet potatoes?? I don’t know.

Is this how it all starts? I feel so inspired by all these new bloggers and want my own little circle (not square) on the internet. Between battling multiple eating disorders and just trying to figure out life as it is, I want to share my struggles, learn from others, and truly find happiness. Whether this is just another one of my “phases” or this is truly a passion, I’m going to follow it and see it to the (possible) end. Photo on 12-25-13 at 1.49 PM

Merry Christmas as it is indeed “another year over….”.