If at first you get a soupy mess…

by Jenn (eating bender) on July 9, 2008

Try, try again!!

My multi-grain hot cereal came out a lot better this morning! I believe there are three key reasons for this successful turnaround:

1) I used less liquid.

2) I added a pinch of salt for the first time ever.

3) I made it on the stove! This last reason is key.

I used 1/2 cup of the dry grains, 1/2 cup of water, 1/4 cup of unsweetened chocolate almond milk, and a pinch of salt. Even though the oatmeal box SAYS to use salt, I never thought to actually do it until I read Kath’s post from a few days ago, when she said it made all the difference. This bowl definitely had more flavor to it!

Coupled with flax and wheat germ, the rye, barley, oats and wheat had a lot of chew! I also added some sliced banana about halfway through the cooking process – they melted into tiny “marshmallows” :) I enjoyed this multi-grain version very much – and got a great tip from “A” that I will use next time: 1/2 old fashioned + 1/2 multi-grain. Thanks!

I ate the oats with a spoonful of Better ‘n Peanut Butter from Trader Joe’s.

I’ve actually had this before. It definitely does NOT taste like peanut butter, and it’s definitely not better ‘n it (haha), BUT I do like it and always appreciate some variety :) It’s got a whole different set of nutritionals too – 100 calories for 2 tbsp. with less fat and sodium, but a bit more sugar than regular PB.

On the side, I had 1 cup of Rainier cherries – my FAVORITE! I love when these are in season – they have a sweet and sour taste to them!

Plus some Coffee Cocoa, for good measure.


I brought a juicy red pear with me for a snack today. I knew we were having lunch catered, so I didn’t want to fill up with a Clif ZBaR. Fruit keeps me satisfied, but still hungry for a big lunch an hour later!


Oh boy. I was one lucky duck for today’s lunch – catered by COSI!! Why yes, I did have Cosi for dinner last night. But offer it to me for free? The way to my heart!

Unfortunately, they only ordered the rustic white bread. But you know it was still mm mm good! I chose the Sesame Chicken sandwichchicken, lettuce, shredded carrots, and sesame dressing! I didn’t snap a picture because we were in the meeting, but here’s my mom’s from last night again, because I’m all about the visual representation!

The only differences here are that 1) it’s a completely different sandwich and bread and 2) there were no baby carrots this time. Other than that, it’s completely the same (aka nothing about this picture is similar other than the Cosi logo, haha).

Since I didn’t have baby carrots, I had to get my vegetables in another form:

Yes, potato chips. Haha – you thought it would be a real vegetable? Yeah, I wish! But I don’t have chips often (if at all!), and these were portioned out, “kettle baked” and tasty – so I went for it. I had the baby carrots in my sandwich πŸ˜‰ – so no worries!!


So my stomach wasn’t really cooperating with me this afternoon. It just felt kinda funny – not really sick, not really in pain. I decided to try some tea to see if that would help. I found Celestial Seasoning’s Sugar Cookie Sleigh Ride in our office kitchen – speaking of Christmas πŸ˜‰ I brewed it up and it smelled A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. – like fresh sugar cookies straight out of the oven!

But then I started drinking it and it was…I don’t know…too sickly sweet? It actually started to smell buttery, it was really odd! So unfortunately, my stomach was saying “nuh-uh” and I couldn’t finish it.

When work was almost over, I finally started getting a little hungry again. I knew dinner wouldn’t be for another hour at least, so I broke out the final piece of my Cosi lunch box:

Can you say chocolate CHUNK? It was awesome! I only ate half because I wasn’t sure how my stomach would react to the chocolate/sugar overload (given the experience with the tea). But it was well worth every bite!


I took some tilapia out of the freezer this morning, inspired by Chandra’s quesadilla from last night! We had a bunch of spinach to use up, so Bobby and I made two huge salads with tilapia, mushrooms and a drizzle of Annie’s Woodstock dressing.

I cooked the tilapia in a pan on the stove with some cooking spray and a lemon pepper marinade from Newman’s Own. It turned out great – a delicious way to end the evening!

After dinner, I did a workout on my new BOSU ball! It was invigorating – but I didn’t get super sweaty like I usually do. I know that sounds gross, but it’s kind of how I measure the strength of my workouts. I think I’ll use it as a supplement to cardio from now on – unless anyone has any ideas on how to pump up the intensity??

Sweet dreams :)

1 VeggieGirl July 9, 2008 at 9:20 pm

Hooray for a successful breakfast this morning! :0D

That cookie is total food porn, oh my.

2 ChocolateCoveredVegan July 9, 2008 at 9:21 pm

Yes, salt DEFINITELY makes oatmeal ROCK!

3 blueberryhil July 9, 2008 at 9:24 pm

Pinch of salt is magic in oatmeal! I only tried it for the first time about a month ago, and believe me, I am KICKING myself for not following the darn instructions and trying it sooner.

4 Melissa July 9, 2008 at 9:37 pm

i’m glad your oatmeal worked out this time! that’s great! and it looks uber delicious!

and i agree w/ veggiegirl…that cookie is like the devil it looks so good…


5 Sarah July 9, 2008 at 9:55 pm

those cherries look good, i don’t think i’ve ever tried that kind before, i’ll be on the lookout next time i’m at the store! good choice with the snack though, red pears are my absolute favorite.

i was thinking about trying that kind of peanut butter when i saw it last time i was at TJs but i decided that if i’m going to have pb i might as well go for the real thing. Otherwise i would probably have a serving of that, then really crave real pb and eat way too much of the good stuff. It’s sort of like my recent proclamation that if i’m going to treat myself to dessert it’s going to be the real deal. i’m really working on this whole ‘everything in moderation’ mentality and not obsessing over calories, etc.

Actually, now that I think about it I might attempt that better’n’ peanut butter for baking though because it would give the pb flavor without so many added calories. hmmm, i’ll have to give it a try.

6 Caroline July 9, 2008 at 11:19 pm

Hm I never add the salt either…I guess I should try it.
I love the Christmas teas, but I have never tried that flavor–the pumpkin and ginger snap are good though!

7 MizFit July 10, 2008 at 4:58 am

ok laughing at the ‘definitely not better n'” and appreciating you saving my time/money buying it and finding that out!

8 ashley July 10, 2008 at 8:24 am

I tried that “PB” once! It definitely isn’t PB.. the texture and taste are off. I loved putting it in smoothies. Too bad I kept eating so much of it, because after all it is lower in kcals and fat!

9 sweetsandsweats July 10, 2008 at 8:34 am

I currently am addicted to cherries. I adore them!! They are one of those things that i really try to enjoy in mass quantities while they are in season because unlike most other fruits, you can’t really get them out of season.

Damn you and your Cosi—makes me want to throw my lunch in the trash and run out to get a Bombay Chicken Salad, eat one hunk of bread while in line, and then savor another piece of that bread with my salad. But alas, the frugal side of me says no.

10 Jenn July 10, 2008 at 9:44 am

VeggieGirl ~ Haha, food porn – love it :)

ChocolateCoveredVegan ~

blueberryhil ~
Agreed! Why can’t I just follow directions?

Melissa ~ Haha – and it tasted as good as it looked!

Sarah ~ I think you’re right – that fake peanut butter would be awesome for baking! I bet it would be really good in smoothies, too!

Caroline ~ I will have to get those this Christmas!

MizFit ~ No problem – glad I could help πŸ˜‰

ashley ~ Good idea about the smoothies, I will have to try that!! I am guilty of eating more of it too to compensate for the lower calories :)

sweetsandsweats ~ Haha – well if you’re ever offered Cosi for free you just gotta take it then πŸ˜‰

11 arielle July 10, 2008 at 3:59 pm

I was going to buy it and use it in my smoothies, too, but I always change my mind and go for the real deal at the last minute. I might have to go for it this weekend.

12 Danielle July 10, 2008 at 4:35 pm

Everything looks so good… but that cookie especially! Oh my gosh, that is one thing that my diet has definitely been lacking in Ecuador a good ol’
Chocolate Chunk Cookie. Poor me ;). The work out sounds fun btw!

13 Allison July 10, 2008 at 6:22 pm

That peanut butter works great in baking!…Not as much on sandwiches though, haha. I can’t get over how just a pinch of salt makes all of the difference…it’s amazing! :0)

14 oatmeal July 10, 2008 at 6:58 pm

LOVE the texture of that whole grain breakfast! And hmmm adding salt to oatmeal–who would have thought that would taste good? To tell the truth I’m afraid to try it after having accidentally tasted an overly salted bowl of oatmeal πŸ˜›

And how pretty do those Rainier cherries look?! I’ve never had them before–but they look really good!

15 Mark Salinas July 10, 2008 at 7:13 pm

I am all over the oatmeal!

16 Jenn July 11, 2008 at 6:13 am

arielle ~ Let me know how it all turns out if you do.

Danielle ~ I used to eat chocolate chunk cookies from Chips Ahoy all the time – this one was SO much better!!

Allison ~ Yeah, I would guess that it wouldn’t be so good on sandwiches – it just would taste funky :)

Carmen ~
I can see how an overly salted bowl would turn you away! That sounds pretty gross!

Mark ~ Yeah, oatmeal!!

17 Wrepaptace August 2, 2008 at 11:46 pm


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