fish

Bresolutions with Women Who Brunch

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Sunday morning, I had the pleasure of dining and chatting with the ladies of Women Who Brunch and enjoying Life Coach Caroline Zwick‘s presentation on how to make goal setting effective and fun. Perfect for late January, when we’re still in the beginning stages of formulating and carrying out New Years Resolutions! So yes, brunch + resolutions = bresolutions.

The group met up at cozy Soho spot Jack’s Wife Freda. The menu was full of delicious things (green shakshuka, Mediterranean breakfast, rosewater waffle…), but I eventually decided on the soy-glazed fish a la plancha, which came over sautéed kale. It was definitely the right choice-probably the best thing I’d eaten all week. fish a la plancha

Caroline gave us each a handout of 7 guidelines for making and meeting our goals, and the one that resonated with me most was the last: CELEBRATE YOUR ACHIEVEMENTS!!!! This has always been a really hard one for me—by the time I’ve reached a goal I set, I’m already onto climbing the next mountain. It had never occurred to me to make celebrating my successes a rule, but damn—how could I have spaced on something so important? thank you note to self

When we ordered a round of drinks (cava for me, of course) after eating and wrote letters to ourselves, to be sent in a few months. You’d better believe I started off with a friendly reminder to take a sec to celebrate. And to say thank you to yourself for not giving up on…yourself. For not laughing at your “crazy” ideas or “impossible” goals.

I had been planning to treat myself to a reflexology massage after the busy two weeks I have where my two clinical jobs overlap as I transition from one to the other, but instead, when I got home from brunch, I called up the Chinese bodywork place I go to and made an appointment for that afternoon. So. Damn. Good. I asked the massage therapist to focus on my scalp and shoulders. Why don’t I always do that? Also, I can’t say I’d ever had my hair pulled during a massage before, but, um. Wow. It was kind of awesome.

What is the hardest part of setting and achieving goals for you? How do you celebrate your successes? 

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What I Ate Wednesday # 141

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This December feels much busier than last year! Where is the time going?  What I Ate Wednesday? As always, many thanks to the lovely Jenn of Peas & Crayons for hosting the weekly link party—hop on over there to see more WIAW from other bloggers!

Since I don’t feel like I’ve shown you a work day in a while, how about I share a few highlights from early this week? Behold…

  • Breakfast: Pumpkin cranberry oats in a nearly-empty peanut butter jar Tuesday morning
  • Lunch: Leftover tempeh & mushroom stir-fry over greens with other veggies mixed in
  • Random: Tuesday there was cake to celebrate my birthday and a co-worker’s upcoming marriage. Because two cakes is probably not in the budget, there was a universal cake.
  • Snack: Greek yogurt with cranberry sauce and cereal Monday
  • Dinner: An ahí tuna salad while in a restaurant with my family
  • Snack: Ugly but satisfying cottage cheese with a drizzle of maple syrup before bed

Is your December really busy too this year? What’s on the menu this week? 

Hangry Times

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For a few months, I was seeing this guy who said he’d invented the term “hangry” (hungry+angry=hangry). He seemed legitimately pissed to hear hipsters and bloggers using it without giving due credit. It kind of reminded me of the many times my dad told us the story of how he’d invented “butterface.”  Just nod and smile…

The person I dated after that did not seem to understand hangriness/hang-er as a concept but seemed to be okay with my taking us out to brunch on weekends. He probably thought I was just trying to be nice and/or show him what a modern/”you can’t buy me” kind of gal I am, but really, I was just trying to protect him from my low blood-sugar rages. That sh!t will break up a marriage—forget about a summer fling.

Do you ever have one of those days where you’re obscenely hungry, despite eating balanced meals at regular intervals? That was me on Tuesday. I felt like I was going to pass out basically all day—once in a while that happens, usually when I’m run down and working too hard. By the time I met up with my mom and our visiting friends for an early dinner, I was ready to gnaw my arm off. Or tear someone a new asshole.

Luckily, they were in a rush to get to a play, so service was quick. They’d wanted Mexican, so I got to enjoy Rosa Mexicano’s grilled salmon, which comes in a delicious mole sauce. Rosa Mexicano salmon

Hit. The. Spot. And nobody got hurt…

Do you ever experience hangry times? How do you cope? Do you know anyone who swears they “invented” a certain phrase? 

Just Because

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As I’ve said before, in times where it feels the world is going crazy, it’s nice to just make myself a nice dinner. The other night, I decided to indulge my curiosity about cooking fish in foil and just f-ing do it. I am so glad I did. This was a cinch to make and just so delicious.

mahi mahi with brussels sproutsI used a thawed frozen mahi-mahi fillet (I dig the Whole Foods vacuum-packed fillets for busy weeknights) and used some sea salt, pepper, rosemary, and a generous sprinkle of garlic gold nuggets for seasoning.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Rub 1 tsp olive oil on fish. Place on foil, presentation side down. Season as desired. Wrap ends of foil to make a little pouch.
  2. Cook ~25 minutes or until done. Unwrap foil and serve.

I served mine over some leftover shredded brussels sprouts that had been sauteed in olive oil with shallots and then drizzled some tahini over the whole operation. It was everything I’d been hoping for and more.

Glad I got over my fish-in-foil fears. This sh!t is just too easy and delicious to not make a regular thing.

 

Boulud Sud

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As I mentioned  yesterday, May is a big month. My mom is super-busy, so when she suggested we go out to celebrate, I set aside a night to have dinner and catch up. Though my family has plenty of favorite restaurants, it’s fun to try new places, so my mom made a reservation at Boulud Sud on the Upper West Side. It was such a nice treat!

I have no idea what our server’s name was, but he was so awesome about recommending tree-nut free dishes (and offering to prep a few things without them) and convincing us to split a bottle of rose wine. The whole meal was excellent—the perfect celebratory mother-daughter dinner.

To start, we shared these sea urchin and crab tartines. Then we each had a gorgeous salad with artichoke puree, fennel, and celery—so freaking good! For our entree, we both got the grilled loup de mer and shared some charred broccoli rabe and roasted cauliflower. Everything had this subtle lemon flavor going on that was out of this world.

In the past few months, I’ve noticed that sometimes I actually really like having cheese for dessert instead of something sweet. Funny how your palate changes over time. In either case, though I can’t remember which cheeses we got, they were both outstanding.

What was your last restaurant meal? 

So I can play later…

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Greetings from “Working now so I can play later” Land! This weekend, I’ve been kicking the ass of my to-do list. With the end of grad school looming, my work and social schedule for May are already filling up like crazy, so I’ve been taking advantage of some quieter days to get stuff squared away.

It hasn’t all been work, though. Case in point:

well, twist my rubber arm
well, twist my rubber arm

Saturday night, my friend Anna and I met for dinner and drinks at Ayza wine and chocolate bar in the West Village. I’d been joking earlier about the fact that when RDs get together, it’s, like, “Let’s each enjoy a glass or two of red wine and savor some organic dark chocolate.” When Anna suggested this place she’d found on an app called Savored, I laughed…Talk about culinary law of attraction—or maybe just a cliche in action. Either way, the food, drink, and company were all enjoyable.

I also met up with some friends on Thursday for dinner on the Upper West Side at Bettola. Do you ever walk by a place a million times, always saying you’ll make a mental note to check it out? Living in NYC, this happens to me a lot! Anyway, it was great to catch up and enjoy some good food.

IMG_2182Predictably, I ordered the roasted salmon, which came with veggies and potatoes—it was delicious. The chicken and ravioli dishes my friends ordered also looked—and smelled—fantastic. Their pizzas also sounded great. The prices were pretty good too. I think a return visit may be in order.

For now, though, back to the grind. Have an awesome day!

Enjoyed any good restaurant meals lately? Do you use apps to make reservations? 

Wearing o’ the Orange

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Happy Monday! Did you have a good weekend? From the looks of Facebook and Twitter, I gather many folks wore o’ the green and all that other St. Patrick’s Day stuff.

I spent Sunday hanging with my mom, and as we walked down the street flanked by a family in shades of Emerald, she looked at her orange scarf and said, “I accidentally wore the opposite color you’re supposed to wear—I hope no one minds!” Like someone would be legitimately offended.

“No one will be mad at you for wearing orange on St. Patrick’s Day!” I said. “Besides, it’s not like either of us is all that Irish.” I was wearing an orange scarf too, and no, we hadn’t planned to coordinate.

“Actually…”

Ancestry is a funny thing. So first there was that time I found out my Greek family is actually sort of Turkish (?) by way of border changes, and yesterday I got to hear the story of how I’m not really related to my Scottish (so-called) ancestors by blood, as my great-grandma’s biological father was some Irish guy passing through town (whether he was a soldier or a sailor or some other sort of transient gent is unclear).

So anyway, guess I’m a little more Irish than I thought. That still doesn’t mean I did anything to mark the day. After yoga plans fell through due to a funny miscommunication about it being a prenatal class (still not really sure what the deal was), we spent some time walking around, eventually making our way to a flea market. IMG_1909 After wandering about in the cold trying to decide what to get for lunch, we made our way to Ocean Grill. Whenever my mom and I get together, one or both of us seems to be craving fish—me because I don’t make it for myself that often, and her for, well, the same reason, as my dad won’t eat it. This time, we were both in the mood for it. I went with the grilled branzino, and we split a side of brussels sprouts. I didn’t get a picture, but they came with a little “ALLERGY” flag because we told them tree-nuts were on the no-fly list. That always embarrasses me, but better safe than struggling to breathe. IMG_1911

We’ve also decided make a tradition of getting our nails done at this one place we’ve gone to a few times. Not only do they give great manicures, they also do amazing massages while you get your nails done. Totally worth the extra few bucks. If you couldn’t tell from other recent posts, I’m a sucker for a good massage—why bribe myself with, like, shoes, when I can have that instead? IMG_1913

So yeah. My shoulders are only very tight instead of impossibly tight today and my nails are a bright shade of gold. I tried to get some work done on a research project about breakfast intake, but instead, I wasted a few hours learning this song on the ukulele because sometimes, well, it’s more important to play obscure old Elvis Costello songs over and over than to do work that you will probably have to do over later anyway. All to keep from losing one’s mind…

Did you do anything for St. Patrick’s Day? How do you keep from losing your  mind?