Archive of ‘crash chow’ category

A New Quick and Healthy Breakfast Idea: Bell Pepper Eggs

bell-peppers-egg

Good morning crashers! I’m stopping in for a short post about a new breakfast idea I found on the interwebs. I can’t take credit for this clever way to cook eggs, but thought it was so fun and easy that I had to share.

bell-peppers

Just clean and cut bell peppers into one inch circles. Place in a pan and let them cook for about a minute so that they start to get tender.

bell-peppers-egg-pan

Now comes the fun part…crack an egg in the middle of each pepper. Voila! I had an issue with the egg spilling out of the sides a little bit, but just because they look mess doesn’t mean they don’t taste good. I let the eggs cook for a few minutes on one side before trying to flip them over.

bell-peppers-egg-finished

The entire process took less than ten minutes. The best part? These puppies are portable. I popped them in a plastic bag and was out the door with a nutritious, healthy breakfast on-the-go. Try it and let me know what you think!

Apple Cinnamon Oat Bars: fANNEtastic Food Has Some Explaining To Do

apple-din-oat-bars-ingredients

After meeting Anne from fANNEtastic Food at the blogger ride last week, I decided to take the plunge and make one of her famous recipes. They look delicious, include fresh ingredients, and shoot me that come-hither stare from across the interwebs every time I browse her site. Enough with the temptation. Time for action. I’m always looking for a quick and healthy breakfast option, and with the impending Snowquestration storm hitting DC tomorrow, I settled on the cozy, feel-good baked apple cinnamon oat bars.

apple-cin-oat-bars-raisins

If you like apple crisp, pie, bread pudding, or cobbler, you’ll love this recipe. It’s the same taste but with healthier ingredients. At least that’s what I’m telling myself, because I had zero self restraint after they came out all toasty and cinnamony from the oven. Holy cow, Anne, you have some explaining to do. Think you can just whip up an addictive recipe without providing the antidote? Not okay. I have to know: HOW DO YOU STOP EATING THESE.

apple-vin-oat-bars-apples

I’ll send you over to her site for the full recipe and step-by-step instructions. I used a deeper pan than she did (using what I had) and they turned out just fine – I just adjusted the timing by a few minutes to make sure they cooked all the way through. Another note: it may look like adding two chopped apples is overkill, but trust the recipe and go with it. You won’t be disappointed.

apple-cin-oat-bars-oven

This is honestly one of the best things I’ve baked in a long time. Healthy, filling, full of no-nonsense ingredients, and absolutely lip-smacking good. I will definitely be putting these on heavy rotation and may need to make a second batch to inhale enjoy during the impending snow day. Goodness knows the first lot didn’t last long.

fannetastic-food-apple-bars-coffee

Thanks for the absolutely addictive recipe, Anne, and let me know when you figure out how to break the vicious cycle of baking/eating the apple cinnamon oat bars! I’m hooked!

Egg (not mc)Muffins

egg-muffins-ingredients

I don’t have a lot of time in the morning to prepare a healthy breakfast. So what do I do? Make a healthy breakfast ahead of time when I do have a few moments to spare. No excuses!

I shared one of my favorite make-ahead breakfasts (overnight oats) with you a few months ago, and now I wanted to share another. Behold, the egg muffin.

egg-muffin-feature

Do I wish I could make a hearty, delicious veggie omelet each morning before I go to work? Sure I do. But considering this is real life and I have a lot going on (like trying to brush teeth and make coffee in the morning), that’s just not going to happen. So I did some searching on the interwebs and found these gems. They’re basically omelets in the shape of a muffin. Genius? I think so.

Make them on Sunday, pop them in the freezer, and microwave one each morning. Add to toast, melt with cheese, schmear with avocado, slice on top of a salad…you decide. But no more excuses for not eating a healthy, filling, nutritious breakfast! Got it?

egg-muffins-eggs

The recipe variations on this theme could fill a blog on their own. If you don’t like the way I made them, do a little searching and find a version that looks good to you. Bottom line: if you don’t like it, you won’t eat it, so make sure to tweak this to suit your fancy. 

egg-muffins-veggies

Ingredients: 

- onion
- red bell pepper
- mushrooms
- salt and pepper
- eggs

Instructions: 

- preheat oven to 350*
- chop up veggies and sauté in a pan
- add six whole eggs to a bowl (you could opt for egg whites if you like)
- add sautéed veggies to the bowl, sprinkle salt/pepper
- whisk all the ingredients together
- grease cupcake pan (I used olive oil)
- pour the egg mixture into the cupcake wells (my mixture filled six)
- make sure to leave plenty of room at the top, these muffins grow in the oven
- cook at 350* for about 10 – 15 minutes (keep checking)
- enjoy!

egg-muffins-cupcake-tin

I wrapped the cooled egg muffins in saran wrap and popped them into the freezer. They de-thawed after about 2 minutes in the microwave – the exact time it takes me to make my morning coffee. Perfect!

egg-muffins-freezer

If you are feeling more ambitious and really want to up the ante on your breakfast prep, check out these delicious egg muffin breakfast sandwiches (think turkey bacon, cheddar cheese, golden toasty english muffins) from Taralynn on the Undressed Skeleton.  Bon appetite!

Circuit Training with Kinesis and My Last Day in Naples

egg-avocado-red-pepper

On my last full day of vacation, there were three things I wanted to do: soak up the sun, eat the rest of the delicious farmers market splurges sitting in the fridge, and crash a class at the local gym. As you can see from exhibit A above, I started the day by crossing one of those items off of the list. Breakfast was a delicious combination of Ezekial bread, schmeared avocado, fried egg, and red bell pepper topped with a splash of olive oil. Simple, easy, quick, and packed with nutrition.

naples-beach-walk

As I mentioned earlier, the Original Crasher received a Fitbit for Christmas and is absolutely loving it. She has been racking up some crazy mileage (there was one day with 11 miles before noon…the woman is a machine) and I was happy to help join in the effort while we were together in Florida. In fact, I can honestly say one of the best parts of the trip were our daily long walks along the beach. On Monday, we totaled close to five miles. Here’s a view of the Fitbit at one of our pit stops in the shade.

mom-fitbit

It was hard to believe that just a few days earlier, I struggled to mange six miles running on pavement. Funny how the body changes from day to day. At any rate, we worked up quite an appetite with all of that walking and promptly dug into home-made lunches upon our return to our beach chairs. Phew!

pb-raw-honey-banana

I went with the tried-and-true crunchy PB with sliced bananas and added some of the raw honey we purchased at the market. It was the perfect post-workout beach treat, especially when paired with a “few” Cape Cod potato chips. Something about that combination always screams beach to me. Maybe I should pack it more often when I return to the office to remind me of sunshine and blue skies.

kinesis-wide-shot

That evening, the Original Crasher and I went to a local wellness center to crash their “Cross Training at Kinesis” class. The real name should have been “36-minutes of Killer Circuit Training and Some Sweet Moves on the Kinesis Machine.” I guess that would be too long to put on a schedule…but it about sums it up.

kinesis-screen

I had never heard of Kinesis equipment before walking into the room (have you?). After doing a bit of research, I discovered that these machines use a system of closed-loop weighted cables to allow for 3D movement and an incredible number of routine variations. This video from Technogym gives a better idea of just how versatile the machine can be. I was really impressed with how functional – and fun – the different stations were. Wish I knew of a place in DC that carried them because I have to admit, I’m salivating to use them again ASAP!

kinesis-circuit-room

The class itself had 12 different stations and lasted exactly 36 minutes. Each station consisted of four rounds of 40 second intervals, after which we had 20 seconds of time to transition to the next station. Aside from the four Kinesis stations, we also worked with a spin bike, boxing heavy bag, rubber bands, medicine balls, kettle bells, barbells, jump ropes, and steps. I started at station one on the heavy bag, which included alternating 40 second intervals of punching and kicking. I then moved on to plyometric moves on the steps, transitioned to resistance-heavy hills and sprints on the stationary bike, and attempted my best combinations of pushes, pulls, lunges, and squats on the Kinesis machines.

kinesis-workout

I didn’t have enough time before class to watch demo videos of each move on the display concourse, so I was mostly relying on watching the guy in front of me. This wasn’t the best strategy, but it didn’t deter from getting a killer workout from the Kinesis stations. They were really my favorite part.

kinesis-with-mom

I’m not sure I could say the same for Mom, but she handled the entire class like a champ and was whipping through the stations with commendable skill. I don’t call her The Original Crasher for nothing, folks! By the end of the 36 minutes, we were both drenched in sweat and trying desperately to catch our breath. We turned to each other, smiled, and said, “Wow, let’s do that again!”

I wish I could find a class like this in DC. I love the circuit set up and the use of incredibly varied equipment to deliver a knock-your-socks-off full body workout. Not to mention it was extremely fast and extremely effective. The only similar thing I have crashed so far would be bootcamp at Jaime Andrews Fitness or Seal Team PT. Suggestions welcome!

Jane’s Long Run Muffins

janes-muffins-tin

Training for an early spring race can be a long and trying process. The weather is unpredictable. The skies can be dreary and gray. And there’s the issue of the persistent, bone-chilling cold. That was especially the case in 2010, the year I trained with my closest running buddies for the April Boston Marathon through the winter craziness of Snowmageddon and the Snowpocalypse. We invested in heavy gloves and neck warmers. We discovered the secret of tucking shirts into pants to create more warmth. And, best of all, we discovered the joy of Jane’s muffins.

janes-muffins-closeup

Jane would make a big batch of these before every weekend’s long run. After we finished, we would pile into one of our apartments, change into warm clothes, and dig our cold hands into the ziploc bag full of these delicious hunger-busters. They became an instant tradition, with quite a few variations over the many months of training (making them with chai tea concentrate was one of our favorites). The muffins are healthy, delicious, easy, quick, fun to experiment with, and the perfect winter snack. But most importantly, at least to me, they will always be a reminder of those cold, fun, crazy, long Saturday mornings running with my best friends. 

janes-muffins-tin

Jane’s Long Run Muffins: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and grease a 12-well muffin tin.

In one bowl, mix dry ingredients:

3/4 c white flour
3/4 c wheat flour
~1/3 c flaxseed meal
3/4 oat bran
1 c brown sugar (I use less)
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 c slivered almonds
dash of pumpkin pie spice or cinnamon (optional)
1/3 c of coconut flakes (optional)

In another bowl, mix wet ingredients:

2 eggs, beaten
3/4 c milk (can substitute vanilla soy milk or chai tea concentrate)
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
~1/8 c oil
applesauce (optional, helps reduce need for sugar)

Add first (dry) bowl to second (wet) and stir enough to moisten all of the dry ingredients. Evenly distribute batter among the 12 wells.

Bake for 10 – 15 minutes, checking after eight. Be careful not to over-bake. You can avoid this by checking the muffins often until you get to know how your oven treats this recipe.


Feel free to experiment – enjoy!


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