Monthly Archives: May 2009

Running Deficits

This is one in a series of food photo diary posts in which I track my food in pictures. I’m also counting my calories. Read all about it in this post or click here to view my calorie intake in a nifty spreadsheet.

No wonder bodybuilders load up on protein shakes – it’s hard to run a calorie surplus when you rarely eat out, avoid processed foods, and simply do a little bit of movement every day. So it would seem that I’ve stumbled upon the secret to burning more calories than you consume: eat whole foods moderately, exercise a little bit, and commute on bike or on foot. Not only will you lose weight, but you can also afford daily treats like full-on cream, sugary jam, pumpkin pie and full-fat Greek yogurt.

I think I need to take better advantage of this treat allowance.

Diary for Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Calories in: 1577
Calories out: 2097
Deficit: 520 (whoops)


Vegan buckwheat crepes filled with cottage cheese and topped with fresh fruit, blackberry jam and soured cream

Cottage Cheese Crepes

Calories: 300
Protein: 14
Fat: 5.3
Carbs: 56

Breakfast #2

Brown no knead bread, toasted, topped with honey and cottage cheese. Served with a cup of decaf.

Cottage Cheese and Honey on Toast

Calories: 177
Protein: 10
Fat: 4.7
Carbs: 24.2


Grilled tofu sandwich with chickpea salad and mixed leaves

Tofu Sandwich

Chickpea Salad

Calories: 424
Protein: 21
Fat: 16
Carbs: 50


Banana Yogurt Smoothie

Banana Yogurt Smoothie

Calories: 209
Protein: 15
Fat: 2.3
Carbs: 36


Black Beans and Rice with Cabbage Slaw. Followed by yogurt, strawberries, and rooibos tea for dessert (not shown).

Rice and Beans!

Calories: 468
Protein: 25
Fat: 5.5
Carbs: 83

Diary for Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Calories in: 1687
Calories out: 1877
Deficit: 190 (not again!)


Bircher Muesli with Yogurt and Fruit

Blue Bircher Muesli

Calories: 321
Protein: 10
Fat: 8
Carbs: 56


Yogurt with homemade blackberry jam, mixed nuts, and a cup of tea.

(I skipped the apple.)

Emergency Snack

Calories: 170
Protein: 16
Fat: 4.2
Carbs: 17


Avocado on Toast with Chickpea Salad and Raw Veggies

Chickpea Salad with Avocado on Toast

Calories: 395
Protein: 13
Fat: 16
Carbs: 55


Brown no knead bread, toasted, topped with honey and cottage cheese.

Cottage Cheese and Honey on Toast

Calories: 204
Protein: 7.7
Fat: 3.5
Carbs: 37


Lentil bolognese with Whole Wheat Pasta, Bread and Salad.
No photo of dinner – I still don’t have the guts to photograph my food when eating with new people. I went to a dinner/workshop with the Open University. For cafeteria food, the OU rocks. They always seem to have something vegan, and it’s the kind of food I’d make for myself at home. My calorie estimates are a total guess.

Calories: 600
Protein: 26
Fat: 8.3
Carbs: 83

My High Fat Diet?

This is one in a series of food photo diary posts in which I track my food in pictures. I’m also counting my calories. Read all about it in this post or click here to view my calorie intake in a nifty spreadsheet.

I never really thought of myself as a fat fiend, but since tracking my calories these past few days, I’m kind of surprised by the percentage of my daily calories come from fat. My fat intake is typically over 30%, while the Dietary Reference Intake system recommends I get 20-35% of my calories from fat. Should I worry? I don’t think so. At least not yet. The DRI is not all knowing. And most of my fats come from good things like avocado, olive oil and nuts. I feel like I eat these things in moderation, so why stop now?

I do have one regret, and this points to the crapulence of calorie counting: today I payed too much attention to the numbers. Feeling a little unsure about that fat percentage, and wanting to up my protein, I decided to buy fat free yogurt today. What a mistake. I don’t care what all those fans of Fage 0% Greek yogurt say – this stuff doesn’t hold a candle to the real thing. I don’t like shortcuts when it comes to food, and this is the last one I plan to make. I’d rather have less of the good full fat stuff than more of the lower fat, less tasty stuff, no matter how much protein it packs.

Monday was a bit of a failure on the calorie consumption part… I ended up running a 488 deficit instead of my goal 100 surplus. See, I need that full fat Greek yogurt. How could I ever have doubted this?

Diary for Monday, May 26, 2009

Calories in: 1,897
Calories out: 1,409
Deficit: 488 (whoops)


Bircher muesli with blueberries, bananas and Greek yogurt.

Berry Bircher Muesli

Calories: 340 kCal
Protein: 10 grams
Fat: 10 grams
Carbs: 56 grams


Orangina, consumed out of desperate fatigue. Totally unnecessary, but cold.

Calories: 150 kCal
Protein: 0 grams
Fat: 0 grams
Carbs: 39 grams


A 3-park walk with Tim around Clissold Park. Calories burned: about 300 kCal.


Tim’s awesome scrambled egg lunch, with toast, avocado, roasted tomato, and asparagus.

Tim's Awesome Scrambled Egg Lunch

Calories: 338 kCal
Protein: 15 grams
Fat: 18 grams
Carbs: 32 grams


Chickpea salad with carrots and cucumber.

Chickpea Salad

Calories: 223 kCal
Protein: 8 grams
Fat: 9 grams
Carbs: 29 grams


Grilled tofu and veggies with quinoa and salad, followed by an apple for dessert (not shown).

Grilled Tofu and Quinoa

Calories: 357 kCal
Protein: 16 grams
Fat: 14 grams
Carbs: 52 grams

The Most Beautiful Day of the Year

This is one in a series of food photo diary posts in which I track my food in pictures. I’m also counting my calories. Read all about it in this post or click here to view my calorie intake in a nifty spreadsheet.

Best Day of 2009

Sunday was by far the most beautiful day London has seen all year. The sun was out, the sky was blue, and it was actually warm enough to get away with just a t-shirt. I tried to spend as much time outside as possible, first with a long walk around Clissold Park and Finsbury park, then with a BBQ at our friend Henry’s in Bethnal Green.

Food-wise, I feel pretty good about things. I came out with a 75 kCal surplus – my goal is about 100. Unfortunately, a good chunk of those calories came from alcohol, but I just couldn’t pass up this rare opportunity to have a cold drink in the sun. In retrospect, I probably could have done without the second and third beverage. Actually, there’s no probably about it.

Lately, whenever I have more than a half pint of beer or a glass of wine, I always feel really rubbishy afterwards. Not hungover, just kind of foggy and tired and altogether poopy. There’s a lesson here. If I’m going to be serious about getting strong, I shouldn’t really cut corners, especially where alcohol is concerned. I don’t have to give up barbecues or nice meals, and I don’t have to totally go cold turkey. I just need to make drinking more of a “special occasion” kind of thing, and limit myself to one when I do have a tipple. Hard work in London. But if I’m going to be strong in body, I’ve gotta be strong in mind, too. And on this plus side, this gives me an excuse to learn to make tasty lemonade and other similarly refreshing cool summer beverages.

On the exercise front, I’m very happy about the walk, but I didn’t really do the strength training I wanted to do. I did however do a pushup max-test and am going to start the one hundred pushup challenge again. I’ve had great success with this previously, and am hoping it will encourage me to set aside time every day to work on getting strong.

Diary for Sunday, May 24, 2009

Calories in: 1,987
Calories out: 1,912
Surplus: 75 (woo hoo!)


Buckwheat crepes filled with banana, topped with Greek yogurt, berries and homemade blackberry jam.

Crepes with Fruit and Greek Yogurt

This breakfast was a little insane. I put way too much yogurt on there, and since it was the Greek stuff, it was reeeeally rich. Good at first, but too much after a few bites. I ended up not eating half the Greek yogurt shown.

Calories: 309 kCal
Protein: 12 grams
Fat: 10.5 grams
Carbs: 43.5 grams

Breakfast #2

Vegan buckwheat crepe filled with sweet creamy tofu and apples, topped with soured cream and homemade blackberry jam.

Vegan Crepe with Apples and Tofu

This tofu filling has really grown on me. I love it with apples, and the blackberry jam brings everything together. That’s a drizzle sour cream on there, not at all necessary, but delicious.

Calories: 157 kCal
Protein: 5.7 grams
Fat: 4.2 grams
Carbs: 26.2 grams


7.6km walk with Tim around Clissold Park and Finsbury Park. Calories burned: about 315 kCal.

Tasty Beverage

Orangina, consumed while walking around Finsbury Park.


Calories: 150 kCal
Protein: 0 grams
Fat: 0 grams
Carbs: 39 grams


Simmered black beans and brown rice with sauteed chard.

Black Beans and Rice with Chard and Avocado

I love simple meals like these.

Calories: 357 kCal
Protein: 13.6 grams
Fat: 14.8 grams
Carbs: 47 grams


I did the pushup max test, a la the one hundred pushup challenge. I managed 24 pushups, which I was fairly pleased with. This puts me in column two of week three.


BBQ at Henry’s – Black bean veggie burgers, cabbage salad, watermelon salad, bulgar salad, grilled veggies, and drinks.

BBVBs and Cabbage Slaw

Watermelon Salad

Calories: 1,014 kCal
Protein: 23.6 grams
Fat: 19.5 grams
Carbs: 114.5 grams

Calorie Counting: Day 1

I’ve started counting my calories. Read all about it at this post or check out my calorie intake log on Google spreadsheets.

Saturday was my first day tracking calories. It took forever and was a pain in the butt, but I learned a few things. First of all, I’m not eating enough to gain weight. I ate about the same amount of calories as I burn by doing nothing. BUT, I also went swimming and went for a really long walk. If I’m going to insist on being active, I’m going to need to eat more. And that’s a great position to be in!

I also noticed that I jam a lot of calories in at the end of the day. This doesn’t bode well for me. Logic tells me I should be eating more earlier in the day, so I have energy to take on all that life hands me. I also don’t like to go to bed with a full tummy.

My breakdown of protein fat and carbs was about 15% / 32% / 53%. I’m still not sure exactly what this ratio should be for muscle gain, but they’re well within the healthy range according to the May Clinic. My fat intake is on the higher end, but I’m not going to worry!

Diary for Saturday, May 23, 2009

Total Calorie Intake:

1586 kCal, 57 grams of Protein, 52 grams of fat, 193 grams of Carbs

Total Calorie Expenditure:

2192 (1600 from just being alive, 220 from swimming, 372 from walking)

Calories In – Calories Out

-606 (deficit)


Buckwheat crepes filled with sweet creamy tofu and apples, topped with jam.

Vegan Crepes

Calories: 290 kCal
Protein: 12.1 grams
Fat: 6.4 grams
Carbs: 49.4 grams


Swam a mile, working in some intervals.

Second Breakfast

Vegan blintz filled with sweet creamy tofu, served with apples and yogurt on the side (apples and yogurt not shown)

Vegan Blintz Experiment

Calories: 141 kCal
Protein: 7 grams
Fat: 4.5 grams
Carbs: 19 grams


Three parks with Tim, plus a trip to the farmer’s market and the grocery store. When all was said and done, we were out for nearly three hours. With that and the swimming, I’d had a very active morning – no wonder I was so hungry for lunch.


Tim’s awesome scrambled egg lunch, with toast, avocado, roasted tomato and mushrooms, and a side of mixed leaves

Scrambled Eggs on Toast

Calories: 366 kCal
Protein: 14.4 grams
Fat: 20.9 grams
Carbs: 33.2 grams


Leftover scrambled egg and tomato from lunch
(No picture!)

Calories: 65 kCal
Protein: 4.4 grams
Fat: 4.3 grams
Carbs: 1.8 grams


Black bean mush burger on homemade bun with three tomato relish, homemade mayo, lettuce, tomato and mixed salad. Paired with Hooky Bitter from the steam-powered Hook Norton Brewery.

Black Bean Veggie Burger

Calories: 725 kCal
Protein: 19 grams
Fat: 16 grams
Carbs: 90 grams

Calorie Counting: A Necessary Evil?

Food Diary.jpg

Calorie counting – is it the ultimate weight loss solution or the slippery slope towards obsessive compulsive food tracking and Michael Pollan-esque nutritionism*? Maybe it’s both.

The first time I experienced real, consistent success at losing weight was when I started tracking my calories. It was a phenomenal way to keep myself honest and it helped me establish good habits that I still follow to this day. Unfortunately, it also instilled a few bad habits that I’m still trying to shake, such as the irrational worry that an extra walnut here or splash of cream there is going to instantly undo all of my progress.

Despite its somewhat worrying effect on my rationality, I’ve decided to start counting calories again. But this time, my reasons are completely different.

Why am I counting calories?


    • I need to gain weight. My kidney infection and its subsequent effects on my appetite and ability to keep food down caused me to lose a lot of weight in a short period of time. The change was noticeable enough that people actually commented on how “skinny” I looked. First of all, I don’t want to be “skinny” – I want to be fit and strong. Secondly, I don’t want to be one of those girls that people worry about.


  • I’m having a hard time putting on the pounds. How is this possible? I’m eating pie, taking cream and sugar in my coffee, putting cheese on my veggie burgers, and enjoying dessert on a daily basis. Something must be missing. Oh right – calories!



  • I want to put on muscle. I don’t want to tub up – I want to put on muscle. To do this, I know I need to eat more calories than I burn, and I also need to make sure I’m getting a good balance of protein, carbs and fats. What’s a good balance? That’s a widely debated question. The Mayo Clinic recommends 45-65% from carbohydrates, 10-35% from protein, and 20-35% from fat. According to Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook, recreational exercisers need 0.5-0.75 grams of protein per day, while adult athletes building muscle mass need 0.7-0.8 grams of protein per pound of body weight. So if I go for 0.7 grams of protein for pound of body weight, that’s about 70g of protein, or 15-18% of my total calories from protein. There’s a lot of math involved in this nonsense!



How will I do it?

Here are some of the tools I will use to track my calories.


    • Google Spreadsheets – I know there are plenty of online tools out there to help you track calories, but I really can’t be bothered with their bloated databases, excessive use of drop-down menus, and annoying email updates. Instead, I’m using a simple spreadsheet. You can view it here: Monica’s Food Diary.


  • SmarterFitter Daily Calorie Need Calculator – Tim and I built this to let people calculate the number of calories they should eat per day based on their calorie expenditure and weight goals. In order for me to gain 4kgs in three months time, I need to eat about 2060 calories per day.



  • SmarterFitter Food Database – Did you know this website also has a food database? This is what I use to look up most of the calorie data for my foods.



  • Calorie Count Recipe Analysis – I love this tool. It makes it super easy to calculate the nutrient info from the list of ingredients in a recipe. Invaluable.



I’m not sure how long I’ll keep this up for – probably only a week or so, just long enough to get used to the amount of food I should be eating. Calorie counting is time consuming, but it works, for losing OR gaining weight. I’ll be posting my updates in my daily diary and in the spreadsheet, and doing as much as is humanly possible to not get obsessed with the numbers.

Good Links:


    • Monica’s Calorie Intake – a Google spreadsheet of my daily calorie intake, along with a tab for calorie info related to my recipes






* Nutritionism is an ideology that assumes that it is the scientifically identified nutrients in foods that determine their value in the diet. Originally credited to Gyorgy Scrinis, the notion was popularized by Michael Pollan. Pollan’s stance was that humans have become disconnected from the natural food chain in such a way as to disrupt instincts relating to food intake, thus necessitating the reliance on nutrition experts to make food choices. Because science has an incomplete understanding of how food affects the human body, Pollan argues, relying solely on nutritionism to make dietary decisions may be fallacious. [Wikipedia]

Vegan Buckwheat Crepes

Vegan Buckwheat Crepes

As you may have noticed, I’ve been digging on the crepes lately. So far I haven’t strayed from Mark Bittman‘s recipe for Buckwheat Crepes, made with buckwheat flour, regular flour, eggs, milk and butter. They’re delicious, and not at all vegan. This isn’t a bad thing, and some might argue against tampering with a recipe that is fundamentally non-vegan. But at the same time, vegan food is “good to think”, and I like that. And cooking under the constraints of veganism lets me think outside of the box, try new ingredients, see old ingredients in a new light, and share food that everyone can feel good about.

So when we ran out of eggs and butter last week, I decided to give vegan crepes a whirl. There are loads of recipes for vegan crepes floating around the web, but there aren’t many that use buckwheat flour. The exception are the Veganomicon‘s buckwheat crepes, which are pleasantly devoid of weird ingredients like margarine or egg replacer. Instead, these buckwheat crepes use chickpea flour and cornflour to bind the dough. Sounds weird, but check it out: these crepes are amazing!

These vegan buckwheat crepes look and cook just like “the real thing”. Here’s a side-by-side photo – can you tell the difference?

One of these things is not like the other

The crepe on the right is the vegan version. As you can see, there’s not a huge difference. My only complaint would be that they lack the subtle richness that butter adds to the non-vegan crepes, but I suspect this could be nicely dealt with by adding some ground cashews or coconut milk to the batter.

Vegan CrepesThe next question is – what do you fill a vegan crepe with? I love sweet crepes, but I find they need to be balanced with something creamy, such as yogurt or cottage cheese. But what’s a vegan to do?

I’ve been experimenting with a tofu filling, inspired by Vegalicious’s blueberry blinis, made by blending tofu with tahini, lemon juice, sugar, and salt. I’m still tweaking the recipe, but the texture is nice and I couldn’t stop eating the stuff straight from the bowl with a spoon. It was great with this morning’s apple crepes with blackberry jam (pictured below, and also makes a good base for vegan blintzes (another great use for crepes, shown on the right).

Vegan Blintz Experiment

Here are a few other ideas for vegan crepe fillings and toppings:

  • Filled with fruit or jam, then topped with soy yogurt, maple syrup, melted chocolate, or nuts
  • Filled with melted chocolate, then topped with berries
  • Filled with peanut butter, then topped with banana
  • Filled with cashew or any nut “cheese”, sweet or savory
  • Filled with scrambled tofu
  • Filled with sauteed veggies, then topped with any kind of gravy – mushroom, cashew, onion, etc.

Vegan Buckwheat Crepes

The chickpea flour may seem like a weird addition, but somehow it works. Add more soy milk to the batter if you like your crepes thinner.

1 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp soy milk
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup buckwheat flour
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup chickpea flour
1 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
vegetable oil

  1. Whisk together all of the ingredients Let the batter rest for at least an hour (I make the batter right before bed, then cook the crepes in the morning).
  2. Lightly oil an 8- or 10-inch nonstick skillet and place over medium heat.
  3. Pour a couple of tablespoons of batter into the skillet. Swirl it around so that it forms a thin layer on the bottom of the pan. (If the crepes aren’t thin enough, add a little more milk to the batter.)
  4. When the top of the crepe is dry, after about a minute, flip and cook the other side for 15 to 30 seconds. (The crepes should brown only very slightly and not be at all crisp.)
  5. Stack the crepes on a plate as you make them. You can keep them warm in a low oven while you make the remaining crepes. Or freeze the leftover crepes, separating each crepes with a piece of parchment paper.

Makes about 10 crepes. Per crepe: 56 Calories; 2.7g Protein; 1.1g Total Fat; 8.8g Total Carbohydrates; 28mg Cholesterol; 140mg Sodium; 1.8g Fiber.

Vegan Crepe Experiments

Vegan Buckwheat CrepesI’ve been toying with the idea of making vegan crepes every since I started on this wild crepe obsession. When on Thursday we ran out of eggs, butter, and crepes, it seemed like the perfect excuse to give vegan crepes a try.

There are loads of recipes for vegan crepes floating around the web, but I took mine from the Veganomicon, which I liked because it used buckwheat flour and didn’t include any weird margarine or fake egg type ingredients. Overall I was really impressed – they looked and cooked just like the buckwheat crepes I’ve been making with eggs and butter. Though they lacked the subtle richness that butter adds, they were still really good and I think they’d stand on their own with the addition of some ground nuts or coconut milk.

In the end, I had one regular crepe and one vegan crepe for breakfast. Can you even tell the difference in the picture below? (I think the one on the right is the vegan one.) Both were good, and when slathered with fruit, yogurt and honey, I couldn’t really tell the difference between them. I call this vegan crepe experiment a success. Stay tuned for the recipe.

Diary for Friday, May 23, 2009


Crepes with Honey and Yogurt

These were supposed to be banana walnut crepes, but the banana was a bit overripe and I didn’t really end up eating it. I did eat the crepes and yogurt, though. I like my bananas a little green.

One of these things is not like the other

Bike Ride

12-mile round trip to client meeting and back. Windy.


Hummus on Toast with Salad

I like to make a big batch of hummus then freeze some of it in an ice cube tray. It makes it really easy to throw together a lunch like this. The salad was really yummy, too – carrots, red onion, yellow bell pepper, mixed leaves. On a whim I tossed in some raisins and dressed it with balsamic vinaigrette. Superb!

Hummus, Toast and Salad


Two parks with Tim.


Pizza with asparagus and salad

This meal came together out of all the random bits of food we had in the fridge/freezer. The asparagus and salad marked the last of our greens. And the pizza was a hodgepodge of peppers, onions, garlic, frozen spinach, olives, mozzarella, parmesan cheese. But in the end it all turned out marvelously. Now, a trip to the grocery store is desperately in order.


Chit Chaat

Diary for Thursday, May 21, 2009


Crepes and Coffee

Apple Crepes with Yogurt and Berries

Coffee and Crepes


Leftover sushi and tamagoyaki

Tamagoyaki and Sushi


Three parks with Tim.


Toast, hummus and salad

Hummus, Toast and Salad

Bike Ride

I met up with some former workmates from my office days at FTSE. We met at the Pride of Spitalfields – my favorite pub in East London. I travelled by bike, about 6 miles round trip.

Drinks at Pride of Spitalfields

Sharp’s Doom Bar

Half Pint of Doom Bar

Dinner at Chaat

Too much food to keep track of.

The food at this Bangladeshi cafe was pleasantly non-greasy, though I did think it needed a bit of salt (my companions thought I was nuts). I’ve had better samosas, but the “paneer roti wrap” was fun, the channa salad was pleasantly spiced, and the tarka dal was delicious and garlicky. It doesn’t beat Rasa, and it doesn’t beat my own Indian cooking (if I do say so myself!), but the food was great for the price, the atmosphere was pleasant, and the staff were really nice. Best of all was the company – my friends rule.

Yummy Stuff

Three Hot Samosas!

Paneer Roti Wrap

Get Calorie and Nutrient Info from Wolfram Alpha

Wolfram Alpha is Wolfram Research’s so-called “computational knowledge engine” that launched earlier this week. Alpha claims to “have access to a vast repository of information from trusted sources around the world: 10tn pieces of data filtered through 50,000 models and algorithms.”

What does that mean in human terms? It means you can use it to do all kinds of data-driven stuff, like calculate math equations, look up socioeconomic data on countries all over the world, and for us health-obsessed foodies, look up info on just about any food under the sun.

I just had a play with Wolfram Alpha and it’s pretty nifty, at least as far as nutrient data is concerned. I can type “1 slice of tofu” into the search box and it pulls loads of nutrient data for 1 slice (84g) of tofu:

1 slice of tofu - Wolfram|Alpha.jpg

But what’s REALLY nifty is I can also use this to calculate nutrient info for recipes. For example, to find out the calories in a serving of oatmeal served with milk and banana, I type “1/2 cup oats + 1/4 cup 1% milk + 1 banana” and it computes the nutritional information for me:

1_2 cup oats + 1_4 cup 1% milk + 1 banana - Wolfram|Alpha.jpg

I like that Alpha lets you search for this stuff in human terms, and returns one result rather than making me pick from a bazillion search results. It’s pretty cool. It does have limitations… for example, I haven’t figured out how to calculate the per-serving information for a recipe that has more than one serving. But overall it’s pretty neat and seems like a good quick reference for food data.

Wolfram Alpha

Pining for Protein: Tamagoyaki and Tofu Smoothies

Chocolate and Banana SmoothieI wanna get hard. I wanna get strong. Getting there sounds easy enough: do some butt-kicking exercises and eat well. I’m still figuring out the butt-kicking part, but the eating well is coming along.

As a veggie, I’ve gotta think a little harder about getting enough protein. I’d be fine if I sat around at my desk all day, but I know that being active means I need a little extra fuel the fire. I suspect I’ve been a little slack in this regard in recent months, which might be why I was totally slammed when I caught that infection a few weeks ago. But now I’m back and determined to rock this thing.

So today I proteined it up with a couple new tricks.

  1. Tofu smoothie – This isn’t really a new trick, but it’s one I haven’t used in a while. I blended up about 150g of silken tofu with soy milk, banana, cocoa, cinnamon and vanilla. With the soymilk, that’s about 10g of protein and a lot of good potassium and vitamins from the banana! Interestingly enough, Roni made almost the exact same smoothie, using almond milk instead of the tofu. Check out her Almmond Milk Shake – it looks superb.
  2. Tamagoyaki – You often find these japanese sweet omelets at sushi restaurants. I made some to go with some veggie sushi I made for dinner. Tamagoyaki is yummy and super easy to make, thanks to the excellent tutelage provided by maki at JustHungry. One large eggs provides about six grams of protein. Add a bit of rice and tofu to the mix and you’ve got a lot of protein to be happy about.

I think I might start tracking my calories again, if only for a week or so, just to make sure I’m getting the fuel I need to get strong. But first, I need to figure out the butt-kicking part of my getting strong plan. Stay tuned.

Diary for Wednesday, May 20, 2009


I had a fabulous swim this morning! I felt energized and totally in the moment. I swam a mile like this, for about 45 minutes, and by the end my head was crystal clear (as was my tummy – definitely breakfast time).


Bircher muesli

It’s somewhat a shame that this fleeting return to Bircher muesli wasn’t one of my best efforts. I skimped on the raisins, and my apple was measly. The result just didn’t have much flavor. The berries helped, but sadly, I wasn’t inspired. Back to the crepe pan I go.

Bircher Muesli

Recipe: Bircher Muesli (don’t skip on the raisins, and make sure your apple is “of a size”!)


Tofu lasagna with asparagus and salad

Gotta love freezer food. I wanna get through this lasagna so I can make another batch, this time with cashew cream!

Tofu Lasagna


Banana and Chocolate Tofu Smoothie

Chocolate and Banana Smoothie


Sushi, Tamago and Salad

Veggie Sushi and Tamago

Recipe: Tamagoyaki [justhungry]

Salad with Ginger Dressing