Category Archives: dessert
it’s my birthday too, yeah! happy birthday to you!
well guys, i made it. i officially arrive at my 21st year. i’m not going to lie. i’m pretty damn stoked. what does a birthday girl do in the last few minutes of the year 20? finish up her birthday cake, of course.
her RAW, VEGAN, PUMPKIN CAKE WITH CREAM CHEESE ICING.
fitting for the season, no? and my taste buds. oh boy. do i ever love me some pumpkin. i trimmed the edges of the cake for two equal sized layers and lemme tell you, late night snacking has never been more delicious. i wish the recipe was mine but alas, it is not. it’s cafe gratitudes. what? did you expect something different ? just trust me when i tell you this is better than any cream cheese frosting i’ve ever had. and it might just win the award for best pumpkin related dessert i’ve ever had the good fortune of eating. it’s going to be a sweet birthday
i have a long
drunken weekend ahead of me. i don’t party much but i think this weekend i will make an exception to my rule. just maybe i’ll give you the deets on sunday. (i’m sorry i just said deets.)
do you have any special weekend plans? regardless, i hope you have a great weekend!
the newly 21 zoe!
what a whirlwind week!
but first: seriously, when did it suddenly become july?
okay, back to it.
i am finally home! i am glad to be back but i for sure miss candace. it was awesome to spend those four days with her in san diego! it flew by. for reaaaals. what did we do? i got to go to the beach! i got to bake a vegan birthday cake! i kicked it around tourist-y old town! i hung out with friends! i went to dave and busters (ridiculous)! a lot of fun times were had.
the best thing though? i got to talk to candace about my food and body issues. one night i felt the urge to share it with her and proceeded to unloaded all of my secrets. however, to my surprise, candace replied she already knew. although i thought i kept my negative, destructive habits tucked safely in the shadows, turns out they were right out in the open the entire time. candace knows how much i struggle but simply has no idea what to say or how to help me. despite all that, she did what any amazing, fantastic, best friend would do: she offered me her ear whenever i felt the need to talk.
it felt incredibly reliving to share all of these thoughts face to face with another person. i’ve know i can depend on candace for emotional support. i’m really not sure why i thought this issue would be any different.
candace’s birthday was on tuesday. for birthday’s, i usually always bake them their favorite cake from scratch. candace wanted a rainbow cake with cream cheese frosting. and, continuing to better her resume for best-friend-of-the-year-award, she requested it be vegan so everyone could eat it (her girlfriend cannot eat dairy too!).
and so, the vegan rainbow cake with vegan cream cheese icing was born! unfortunately, i am unable to post a picture of the finished product because of it’s…questionable content? i will tell you lots of colored frosting was made and piped (i love piping. it’s basically the most fun thing to do. ever.). happy birthday candace was on the top. with a 21.
how’d it taste? pretty good! the frosting was killer. the cake? it was good, but i think it could of been better. everyone else liked it though.
this was apparently very good. i would not know because it was so decidedly un-vegan it was fun to make, too! everything was made from scratch, including the pastry creams, whipped cream and cake.
before i slip onto the couch to watch my newest documentary (who killed the electric car?), i will share one more thing: i did not work out for three days in a row. yup. three whole days passed without one formal, structured work out. how did i feel? slightly anxious. did i watch what i ate more carefully? kind of. did i try to relaxed and forget my “rules”? yes. i ate french fries thankyouverymuch. AND i ate late. trying not to focus on my body consciousness. revelation: the less i think about it, the happier i am. phfttt. took me long enough, right?
regardless, outside of a little walking and one 20 minute yoga flow (my friend is so ridiculously into yoga so of cooourse we had a little session ) i did not work out. i will not lie: i felt weird not moving. it was nice, but it’s become such a part of my life it just felt weird not to be active for at least an hour a day. this morning i woke up and did a quick 20 minute yogadownload(.com!) morning flow and then went on a quick 4-mile run, the last mile of which was done by sprinting for 30 seconds, walking for 60 seconds, repeat. it felt good to move and i felt stronger in my sprints. i could hold the intensity for a longer period of time and i felt faster. improvements? i’m thinkin’ so!
have a good one kidlettes. i promise a more focused post tomorrow.
sorry i’ve been absent. phhfft, who am i kidding though? i think only about like…three people read this anyway. sorry to the 2.5-3 people who check this from time to time!
i am currently at home! i did not plan on staying so long but, so is life. i just kind of love being here with my family. i came home friday night for a big family dinner in oakland. it was glorious. i got to see my aunts and uncles and my one cousin who is my age who i never get to see. i ate a giant bowl of polenta. i ate a ridiculously rich bittersweet chocolate pot de creme. i ate late. i broke all my “rules”. and you know what? I. DIDN’T. GIVE. A. CRAP. nope. not at all. did i wake up with a food baby in the morning? sure, i was a bit puffy.
so i walked on the treadmill for three miles and called it a day for exercise. then came the high light of the day: USA VS ENGLAND!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! guys, this game was epic. the US team really sucks — i’m not going to deny it. we bunch together and have NO idea how to mark men. all of our players kept running into one another. no wonder the rest of the world laughs at the US’s attempts at soccer…oh, plus we call it soccer while the rest of the world calls it football. seriously, america makes no sense sometimes. regardless, the game ROCKED. england scored in the first 3 minutes — huge upset. then we came back with a goal — albeit a pretty lame one…BUT we still got one! it went RIGHT through the keeper’s hands. um. yeah…he’s never going to live that one down. towards the end of the game the US had multiple chances to score and just could not find the back of the net. ultra bummer because there were just SO MANY CHANCES. hopefully we’ll play england again! (though i highly doubt it.)
the best part about all of these matches? THE BOYS! ohmygoddddd these football boys make my heart flutter. i swear they’re all so damn good looking. i almost can’t stand it…almost
after the game i went swimming. our pool is finally warm enough to swim in! we don’t heat it because we not rich and heating a pool takes a crazy amount of money outta the bank! we do have a solar heater cover thing so when it’s hot, the water warms. it felt soo good to swim!
i spent the remainder of the day lounding around reading middlesex which, so far, i absolutely love. it’s written in a very different (though similar in terms of prose) style compared to the virgin suicides. he’s a great writer and this story is compelling so far.
yesterday rocked but i really want to discuss something that did not rock about yesterday.
i eat well about 90% of the time. very well. over the past year i have cut out a lot of food items: meat, (most) dairy, (most) gluten, (most) breads and carby items. i try to eat like the other bloggers i see: healthy healthy healthy. but, about once a month, something happens: i go on an epic one night binge. i’ve mentioned my struggles with binge eating before. it’s definitely a battle i’m getting better at fighting but some nights, i just cannot stop myself from eating anything and everything i deem “unhealthy”. do i know this is a bad habit? you bet your ass i know it’s as unhealthy as unhealthy can be, both physically and mentally.
last night i went a little too far. i had a binge episode unlike any episode i’ve had in quite a long while. it’s been a good amount of time since i last ate this amount of food in one sitting. and trust me, i ate a lot yesterday outside of this binge, too. i ate oatmeal. i ate a ginormous salad. i ate an apple and some crackers (crackers are something i rarely eat. but i am not in my apartment so i eat what is in my parent’s fridge/pantry) with pb & ab. i ate a delicious healthy burrito with roasted broccoli and cauliflower.
then this happened: i ate a serving of so delicious coconut milk cookies & “cream” “ice cream” with some dark chocolate chips. then i ate another serving. plus a bite or two more. then i ate a R.I.D.I.C.U.L.O.U.S amount of chocolate chips. then i made cookies — real cookies with butter and white flour and refined sugar…and ate about nine. you guys, i knew this was “bad”. i even felt it — i was stuffed but i kept eating. and eating. i woke up this morning and felt hungover and ill. my stomach was upset. it was bad news. i don’t even want to think about how many calories i consumed. i swore today would be better…
…until my parents came home from their overnight stay in healdsburgh with more cookies. of which i ate 1.5. BAD IDEA. BAD BAD BAD. i know myself: sweets are my downfall. i know they throw me out of whack. BUT I JUST CANNOT STOP MYSELF. although my binges are much less frequent, i just want to be rid of this habit forever. “secret” eating makes me feel ashamed. and, although i wasn’t ashamed of myself for eating what i ate last night (in fact, i was incredibly forgiving of myself this morning. i said hey, you don’t get fat from ONE night of bad eating. it’s OKAY.), i WAS disgusted. why? because i literally made myself sick. that’s UNHEALTHY. i am so tired of this cycle.
i am so tired of denying myself the carbs i crave. the other night, before we sat down for dinner in oakland, the restraunt brought out two pizzas. did i want a piece? of course. did i eat one? hell no. why? because it was white flour. because it was extra carbs and calories i didn’t need. because i was scared of it.
my food anxities developed seemingly out of no where. i never used to be this way. i never used to berate myself the way i do now. why do i deny myself things i know i love like bagels and bread? i literally have not had a bagel in just about a year. and before that i don’t think i had a bagel in about three years. what the eff gives?
i am so tired of patrolling what i eat and when i eat and how much i eat. it’s important to listen to my body and, for the most part, i do. but i am so tired of feeling shame when i eat something “bad.” where did all these “rules” come from? i love food — why can i not enjoy it? whywhywhyWHY??????? all these wonderful food bloggers make it all look so simple…their relationship with food looks so much happier and healthier then mine. it gets exhausting to constantly think about food, to think about where and when my next meal will be and what i will eat and if it will include “bad” foods or “good” foods. i want to eat bread and potatos and pasta (god i miss pasta) and enjoy it. i just want to be relaxed about food. i want all of this anxiety to go away. it wasn’t here a year ago. why is it here now? when did i cross over from healthy to obsessive? something just isn’t right.
so i decided to go to a counselor when school starts up again. i tried this last year but did not commit to it. i wasn’t prepared to. but now i am. i have to be. i need a way of handling my binge eating and balancing my mind, body, and soul. i just don’t think i am strong enough to do it on my own anymore. i thought i had this under control but if last night (and subsequently this morning) shows me anything, it’s that i really don’t.
how can i encourage others to live healthy lives if i myself don’t? something is missing. something is off. i need to figure out what it is and fix it. i cannot keep eating and running myself miserable. i just can’t.
so stick with me here, you 2.5-3 people, as i attempt to strike a permanent balance in my life. step one? tonight i am going out for pizza with my aunt and cousin. REAL pizza.
but first a run…that i am nervous about because of a) all the crap i ate last night/this morning and b) all the HEAT. holy cow it’s hot in northern california folks. if i need to walk i’m going to walk. usually is i walk, i feel like a failure. i need to stop thinking like that. it makes running something i drag myself through instead of something i enjoy.
thanks for reading, too, if you do. i’m sharing thoughts i rarely speak out loud to myself. i really, really appreciate it — especially when i am feeling as vulnerable as i do right now.
after four long years, it’s finally here folks…
THE EFFIN’ WORLD CUP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (multiply that my 3 million and you’ll just scratch the surface of how excited i am.)
i love soccer. literally. i am in love with it. i played on a team from the ages of 3-19. i lived it, breathed it, ate it. in high school i sacrificed weekends at soccer tournaments and always enjoyed every last sweaty minute. i love the competition. i loved taking girls out (the legal way. i hate cheap shots). i loved scoring goals. i loved the team work involved. I. LOVE. SOCCER. (football!!!)
not only do i love soccer and not only did the world up start today, but it’s in SOUTH AFRICA!!!!! my home away from home. last summer we got to see them building the actual stadiums! at least the ones in capetown.
i miss this place every single day. a piece of my heart will forever be there.
(i took those, just in case you were wondering )
i cannot imagine being there right now. the government was prepping for the massive influx of people. it must be an absolute madhouse. i remember too that the government was attempting to cover up all the poverty. they put up fences along the major freeways to partially hide all the informal shanty-town settlements (the houses made of tin and plastic and garbage.) it makes me sick to think that, just for the sake of tourism, the south african government tried to cover up the real state of their country. out of sight, out of mind, right? ugh.
regardless, i cannot express enough how much i would kill to be there right now. my mom even suggested my dad and i go but a) um, that’s ridiculously expensive and b) my dad had to work. BUMMER. so i’ll just have to watch each and every game instead. oh darn…;)
le siiigh. moving on…
yesterday i did something i swore i never would or could do: i went running without music! i went on my friend trail run and just enjoyed my surroundings. my music was the tree branches catching the wind and the soft chirps of early morning birds. oh, and the flies serving are cheerleaders around my ears the entire time. that buzzing sound sucks so much.
but it was beautiful. i took it easy for my knees sake (i scheduled an MRI for next tuesday…fingers crossed it’s not a torn anything…) and just ran an easy couple of miles in about twenty minutes. nice nice nice way to start the day. i spent the rest of it lounging around, biking riding to a friends and then the farmer’s market and then home.
i had some good eats yesterday, too. i’m really trying to eat more as well as eat more balanced meals. i think i did okay yesterday. protein oatmeal in the morning after my run. yum.
and a slice of tempeh covered with some almond butter and homemade preserves. (if you’re wondering why it’s not in between two pieces of bread it’s because i ran out of bread forever ago and haven’t bought any. keep forgetting.)
dessert was an unpictured bowl of dark chocolate chips !
i just got back from an early morning bikram session. god i love bikram! i am most definitely getting stronger in my back. when i first started, cobra pose, boat pose, airplane pose and all the poses using your back muscles were SO difficult to hold. but now i look forward to them! don’t you love feeling yourself getting stronger?
i also looked forward to this little number:
gina’s breakfast cookie!
in this was 1/3 cup oats, one T chocolate protein powder, one T almond butter, 2 T almond milk, 1/2 a nanner, a pinch of cinnamon and a pinch of chocolate chips. stuck it in the fridge overnight. DELICIOUS. this plus the rest of my mango from yesterday and breakfast rockedddd.
the rest of the day will consist of some reading (just checked out middle sex from my library! i love jeffery eugenides. the virgin suicides was so great. i read it last summer so i figured i’d read his other book this summer!), some more awesome food, and a dinner in berkeley with my family, aunts and uncles included. it’s my cousin’s graduation dinner! he’s off to USC in the fall. after dinner i’m pretty sure i’ll park myself in front of the television for some world cup action (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!).
before i go, imma leave you with a little more south africa.
good morning, kidlettes!
not only did i just spend 20 minutes attempting to get mango out of my teeth (just one of my many methods for attracting the opposite sex!), but it’s all kinds of grey outside. i’m hoping the sun will burn off all of this low hanging fog by noon (like it usually does in the summer) but i’m not quite sure it will. it’s 10:30 already and still pretty damn bleak.
the rest of yesterday ended up being pretty rad-tastic. (just a quick fyi: i love making up words. and ridiculous sayings. you might see some…or a lot…from time to time. do not be alarmed — it’s just me being all weird-like!). i biked around and kicked it with some friends. i got to reintroduce myself to thebestvideogameever (nerd alert!) super smash brothers brawl! (for the wii). i played a borderline disgusting amount of brawl last year. it was fun to indulge a little.
following my mini geek-out i came home to make dinner. which was nothing special, i assure you. just some sauteed onions, spinach, chick peas, and half of a beet i roasted the other day. it was tasty. but the REAL tasty part came after dinner. dessert holds a special place in my heart. on my path toward healthy living, i found my body reacts really poorly to high doses of sugar. B-U-M-M-E-R. i just cannot handle very much of it at one time. so, what’s a girl with a massivo sweet tooth supposed to do? recreate her favorite desserts with a healthy spin, of course!
now you’ve all seen this before. it ain’t nothin’ new. banana soft serve a la gena. i scream, you scream, we all scream for bananasoftserve! that has a great ring to it, i know
BUT, trust me this is a HUGE but, i think i just found my most favorite way to add a bit more decadence to it.
magic shell made for some magic sundae’s when i was a kid. i luuurved the chocolate flavor. well duh, that’s because i love chocolate. i might bathe in chocolate if given the opportunity. but that’s besides the point. the point is this: this stuff is pretty not-good for you.
ingredients: SUGAR, SUNFLOWER OIL, COCONUT OIL, COCOA, CHOCOLATE, CONTAINS 2% OR LESS OF: COCOA PROCESSED WITH ALKALI, SOY LECITHIN, SALT, VANILLA, MILK.
when sugar is the first ingredient, that’s a major boo. the rest is not too bad but i know i could go without the huge sugar dosage. plus the nutrition stats don’t look so stellar, either. per 2 T you get 210 calories, 17 g fat with 7 g of that being saturated. and 16 grams of sugar! no thanks, imma pass.
and instead i’ll add this to the top of my mountain of banana soft serve: DARK CHOCOLATE ALMOND SPREAD!
this is what i did:
i froze bananas.
i places roughly 1.5-2 (ish) bananas in my food processor.
i processed for a few minutes.
i scraped down the sides a couple of times.
i added 1 T carob powder for extra chocolatey-ness.
i processed for a few more minutes.
i scraped into a bowl.
then, magic happen. heavenly, delicious magic.
i took 1 T maranatha’s dark chocolate almond spread and melted it in the microwave for 30 seconds. i stirred it up and drizzled it over my mound of soft serve. it looked beautiful. and mouthwatering. i snapped a quick picture before completely destroying it.
and you know what i found when i started to
inhale it dig in?
THE DARK CHOCOLATE ALMOND SPREAD HARDENED EXACTLY LIKE MAGIC SHELL!!!!!!!!! best. discovery. EVER. evereverEVER. i am making this again tonight it was so good. i am a happy happy girl.
(however, just now i looked at the ingredient list for this. while it’s not as processed or as “bad” for you as magic shell, i think the list could be a whooole lot better. plus it’s not vegan, sorry kara! i think in the future i will either a) make my own chocolatey-almond spread OR buy one with better ingredients. any suggestions as to different brands!?!)
i was so satisfied with this. i was literally BEAMING. ahhh…food, glorious food! plus this stuff didn’t have any dairy in it which, sooooometimes, upsets my stomach or makes me a little bloaty-gasy. (oh hey honesty, what up!) following this bowl of awesome i biked back to my friends house and partied a little before retiring to bed. i forget how sleepy wine can make me…(partying with wine…the classy college student.)
but i wanted to touch on something i’ve been thinking a lot about lately. i know i’ve mentioned this before but bare with me. let me start by saying this: i love every part of my body except for one place. i love my legs, i love my arms, i love my face (when it doesn’t break out!), i love my hair, i love my butt, i love my shoulders, i love my back. i DO NOT, however, love my stomach. you all know this, i’ve lamented about it before. no matter what i do i still manage to carry around this little pouch. i’ve lost over 20 pounds and STILL this bump remains. by the end of the day, i can most certainly look 4 months pregnant. talk about a self-esteem deterrent. BIG TIME.
my girl, as i not-so-affectionally call it, has been the source of my body-image misery since i was a kid. i cried about it in middle school, i cry about it today. laaaameeeoooo. it seriously upsets me, particularly because last summer when i went away, IT went away. big time. my lower abdomen shrunk considerably. i loved it and never thought twice about it. upon returning back to the states though, it has returned a considerable amount. so while every other part of me has toned up and looks pretty great, my lower abdomen has not.
when i read all of these healthy living blogs i love so much, every picture these wonderful women post of themselves gets me down a bit. i try so hard to not get caught up in the comparison game (much easier said then done, i know) but dang guys, it’s so hard. all of these women seem to possess these amazingly flat stomachs. and if they’re not entirely flat, they’re definitely not “4 months pregnant”, either. i feel like a failure. what did i do to make my stomach re-inflate like it has? i work out 5-6 days a week. i switch it up. i eat well. it’s driving me insane. aaaaabsolutely bonkers. is it because i don’t eat as much i should considering my muscle mass? is it because i eat too much fruit? is it because of gluten (which i have slowly cut out of my diet for experiments sake)? is it because i don’t drink enough water? is it because i am bloating? is it because i am obsessing about it? is it….?
whatever it is, i really want to figure it out. i know genetics plays an important role, but i also know it is completely possible for me to have a flatter stomach because i had one not even a year ago. without any stupid abs exercises. and without any ridiculous amounts of exercise.
ugh. can anyone help me recovery my sanity? this fixating business is so not healthy, that much i know.
so now i’m going to forget myself on my yoga mat. does anyone else have yogamazing podcasts? the instructor, chaz, offers a bunch of different classes. they’re really nice. i think i’ll do one of his and then a yogadownload. i need to pump up the endorphins before a tummy-related mood sweeps over me.
have a good day, everyone!
beatles fun fact: In 1962 a contest was held by the Mersyside Newspaper to see who was the most popular band in Liverpool. The Beatles won the contest by calling in and posing as different people voting for themselves.