Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Coast to Coast With A Full Belly!

Okay, I'm sure you're all sick of hearing about all the places I've been visiting, all the delicious food I've been eating, and all the schweaty workouts that seem to pale in comparison to the food....

I mean, who really cares about the decadent desserts that find their way into my belly?


I know you've been enjoying the mouth-watering pics that have filled my posts for the past few weeks and I want you to know: great food doesn't end when vacation ends!

Case in point --- arriving home in Southern California.
Heck, flying to SoCal was even filled with food!

I was up at the break of dawn to catch a flight from Virginia (my daddy's home) to San Diego (my momma's home) and, as I arrived at my gate, I was surprised to discover that I had been upgraded to first class - THANKS MOMMA -

You know what that means?  Breakfast.  None of this pay-for-your-snack-box crap either..
I had an herbed omelette, cajun potatoes, and two sausages.  With a side of non fat blueberry yogurt and a fruit bowl... and a warm croissant (extraaaa buttery! not that I ate it or anything)

After a rather bumpy - but pleasant (who can complain in first class) - trip, I arrived in SD, where I was greeted by one of my favorite people: the grams.

Yeah, I refer to my grandmother as "the grams" because she wayyy too cool and way too young to be addressed by such a ridiculously old-sounding name. ps - this is me sucking up to her so she'll cook more meals like this....

Butter lettuce salad topped with her home made mango and black bean salsa & a seared ahi tuna fillet!

Oh yeah... what a great way to cure end-of-vacay sickness! She promised to give me recipes for you all later, don't worry!

In between our gourmet lunch and our surprisingly damn good dinner... the grams spoiled me with one of my all-time favorite foods: PUMPKIN BREAD WITH CHOCOLATE CHIPS, WALNUTS & RAISINS!?!?! 

You would like to see a picture of this, am I right?
Well, let's just say her creation tastes better than it looks.. we had a slight malfunction.  But that didn't stop me for eating 1/4 of a loaf.

She let me cook her dinner.  And I wanted to go all out!  So I made eggplant and zucchini parmesan with brown rice and parsnip fries :) yes, I can cook.

And I cook real good.

I started off by "frying" the eggplant and zucchini on the stove, using PAM instead of oil.
Then, I layered a casserole dish with marinara sauce, my fried veggies, more marinara, non-fat ricotta cheese and mozzarella! Oh my buns.. this was amazing.

 Check out that cheesy goodness...

 Eggplant & Zucchini Parmesan
1 eggplant (large)
2 zucchinnis
oregano and garlic salt
Non-stick cooking spray
1 bottle/can of marinara sauce
about 1/2 a cup of non-fat ricotta cheese
top with mozzarella and parmesan cheese!

- preheat your oven to 400 (mine was at 420). "fry" your veggies - coated in oregano and g.salt - using nonstick cooking spray.  layer marinara, veggies, marinara in the casserole dish.  top with cheeses and bake for about 25-30 minutes!! Broil at the end for some crispy top!

On the side, I chopped two parsnips, sprayed some of my PAM on top, coated with salt, pepper and paprika (for some spice) and baked them in the oven at 420 for about 25 minutes (flipping half way)

The result??

An amazing - and healthy - meal that leaves you completely stuffed!!
Thank God desserts go in an entirely seperate stomach... because I'm meeting up with my buddiesss for some GOLDEN SPOON - only the best frozen yogurt on the planet.

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