I woke up Monday morning and felt a little funktified and not in a good way. This was coming off a good weekend with a good night’s rest, so go figure. I think the Blog Gods are mocking me. Every time I post something, they rise up and smack me in the face with the opposite. Clean eating leads to healthy living until you are struck down with a virus followed by an infection. Happy is as happy does until you wake up cantankerous and can’t explain why. It makes me crazy when there is no rational reason for something. Maybe I ate too close to bedtime. Who knows, but I really believe it’s a personal choice to be happy each day, so I spent the better of mine trying to shake off the funk. Let me just say, the odds were against me (although I do love an underdog).
Since I knew I was prone to a little bitchiness today (sorry, I went there), I made extra sure to start my day with a smoothie; I didn’t want any kind of hangry action jumping on the cranky train. I mixed it up and added coconut juice to my smoothie, and it was phenomenal. The only thing missing was a shot (or three) of Rum, a book, and a beach. Vacation is two weeks away, and I think I might be ready. In fact, I know I’m ready. I’ve even got the third book in the Shades of Grey series cued up in my Kindle. Is it weird and uncomfortable I’m going to read this while on vacation with my family? Yeah, I didn’t think so either.
Work was a fairly typical Monday at the start of a new month, which equals crazy busy, constant interruptions, intermixed with a little madness. Fun right? Truth be told, it wasn’t bad since I’d much rather be busy than idle (I don’t do idle well), and the time literally flew by. I tend to work better under pressure anyway. See, you want me on your side in a crisis.
I did manage to squeeze in a spinning class at lunch time, and OMG, it was hot. My gym, in a moment of zero clarity, decided to turn the air conditioning off in the spinning room over the weekend and kind of forgot to turn it back on until an hour before class. And just like the rest of the country, Cleveland is in the middle of a heat wave, so it was about 80 degrees at the start of the class, and I don’t even want to know how hot it was by the end. It felt like a sauna, and within minutes, I was literally dripping sweat, and my face was a lovely shade of purple (purple is nice for my food, not necessarily for my face).
When someone asks if you are alright, you know pretty went out the window a ways back. Not that I actually care about pretty at the gym, but today was a whole new level. Not only was my hair soaking wet by the end of class (this is normal), but my sweat towel was too (Ewww, gross). I think I lost a pound in water weight alone. It was rough, but I’d do it again in a heart beat, although I wouldn’t mind a little AC next time.
After an insane day at the office, I returned to our lovely home where I proceeded to water our gazillion flower beds (see Heat Wave above) and my indoor plants and finally folded the two baskets of laundry we managed to wash over the weekend…and I wonder why my clothes are always wrinkly. I used to try the trick where you throw the clean laundry back in the dryer, and if you pull it out fresh and fold it fast, it’s wrinkle free. The problem is I never managed to get it fresh, so I just kept drying it over and over and over again. Not my finest moment(s).
Do you remember the Grimm Brothers Fairy Tale about the poor little shoemaker and the elves (http://www.authorama.com/grimms-fairy-tales-39.html) who snuck into his home each night and did his work for him? I’d like to hire these little elves. Maybe they could do my laundry, although on second thought and especially after rereading this little tale, it turns out the elves were working buck naked, so I’m not sure how I’d feel about them touching my skivvies. Can someone please tell me why they were without clothes? And why this story was fitting for small children? Don’t worry kids, the naked elves will come and do your work for you, in the middle of the night when you least suspect it. Hmmm, the Grimm and Messed Up Brothers indeed.
Laundry and elves aside, I decided to make Zucchini Fritters for dinner since Zucchini (aside from our seemingly never-ending supply of Green Onions) was the last holdout from our Week 3 CSA share. I wanted to put it in action before it had an opportunity to wither away and join the land of the never eaten and neglected produce. There’s nothing worse than pitching produce, and this is where the CSA keeps me hopping. It really is a blessing because we always have fresh healthy veggies on hand, so I am constantly cooking and eating them. They taste fabulous, I feel great and my waistline keeps getting smaller. That’s a win, win, win in my book (triple threat).
The Zucchini Fritters and subsequent Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce turned out pretty fantastic, but there was one problem. I didn’t make enough. One medium zucchini was supposed to yield 6 lovely fritters and I ended up with only three, half of what I should have gotten (look at my strong math skills). So, the Hubby went hungry tonight. I kid, I also made him a hamburger so he was kind enough to let me have 2 of the fritters (that’s two-thirds for you crazy mathematicians!). The crown jewel of the meal though was the blue cheese stuffed dates hanging out in the back left corner of my plate. I figured if I was firing up the grill, I might as well add some of these bad boys to it.
Let me just say, summer doesn’t get much better than Blue Cheese Stuffed Dates. They are sweet, savory, sticky and tantalizing. Your taste buds will sing and dance the Cha-Cha (the real thing, not that ridiculous Slide). Even the Hubby said, “You have to put these on your blog,” and since I always do what he says (snort), here you have it.
Blue Cheese Stuffed Dates
- Whole Pitted Dates
- Blue Cheese
- On one side, slice lengthwise down the middle of the date, exposing the inside. Do not cut through to the other side.
- Stuff the inside of date with blue cheese and then squeeze the date closed.
- Place on top shelf of grill (i.e. away from the direct heat), cut side up, and let sit for a few minutes until they start to brown and the cheese starts to melt. It shouldn’t take long. Our grill was at a medium flame, I closed the lid and let them sit for roughly 5 minutes.
If you’re a carnivore, feel free to wrap the stuffed date with a 2 inch strip of uncooked bacon before grilling them. One more note about these little buggers, they go down real easy, like too easy. So, I’d only grill a handful at a time unless, unlike me, you have self-control and can restrain yourself from devouring them all and then licking the plate.
And since I haven’t posted a recipe in almost a week, why not make it a two for one special. The original Zucchini Fritters recipe (I made some tweaks) comes from here http://lifelynstyle.com/2011/06/26/recipe-summer-squash-like-zucchini-fritters/
Recipe: Summer Squash Fritters
- 1 medium or 2 small summer squash (like zucchini)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp mixed seasoning of your choice (I used Seasoned Sea Salt, although a spicy blend would work nicely too)
- 1 large egg
- 1 green onion, chopped
- 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
- approximately 2 tbsp of olive oil
- Peel and great squash.
- Sprinkle with salt and let sit for 5 minutes.
- Drain and/or squeeze out as much juice as possible. The amount of water which comes out is insane.
- In a mixing bowl, lightly beat the egg.
- Add squash, pepper, seasoning, green onion, and flour.
- Mix well and form into fritters or patties (approx 3 fritters).
- Heat oil in a nonstick skillet on medium heat.
- Drop fritters onto skillet.
- Gently flatten with a spatula.
- Cook 3-5 min on each side until golden in color.
- Drain on plate lined with paper towel.
Honey Mustard Sauce
Mix 1 and a 1/2 teaspoons of honey with 1 tablespoon of Dijon Mustard. Viola
As for me, the day ended on a positive note and with good food. Consider my funk shaken (not stirred).
How do you shake off the funk, and what’s your favorite summer appetizer?