Chocolate Protein Pancakes!!


I’ve been craving sweets lately (which sucks when you’re avoiding carbs, since everything sweet is carb-laden). Liquid stevia has become my best friend; we get it at Trader Joe’s, and one bottle will last both of us a couple of months.

I’m also prone to “food tantrums” (where nothing sounds good or what does sound good is an irresponsible choice). They used to be terrible and resulted in plenty of fights between Joey and me. I’m much better now (probably from a combination of being older and wiser and having some great medication), but I’m still prone to getting frustrated when I don’t know what I want or want something I can’t have.

Anyway, this morning, I was in desperate need of some pancakes. We’d already tried protein pancakes a few days ago, but Joey wanted to try making a chocolate version.  I looked over a few recipes out in the blogosphere, but I didn’t follow anything close enough to reference, so this is mostly a result of trial-and-error.

Makes 6 pancakes


  • 4 eggs
  • 2.5 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 scoop of Protein powder (We used MHP Paleo Protein in Vanilla Almond flavor)
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 5-7 drops liquid stevia
  • 1/4-1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk (start with a quarter cup and increase as needed)
  • butter (to grease the pan)


  1. Heat a non-stick skillet or griddle over medium-high heat
  2. Add all ingredients in a large mixing bowl
  3. Whisk until thoroughly blended and lump-free
  4. Use butter to grease non-stick skillet or griddle
  5. Pour batter onto skillet (we cooked them three at a time based on our skillet size)
  6. Cook on first side until you begin to see the bubbles on the surface of the pancake pop without re-forming.
  7. Flip and cook until done throughout

This recipe makes six pancakes that are about 3″ in diameter.

We had ours topped with peanut butter. They’re also good with freshly whipped heavy cream and/or sugar free syrup! To make them without the chocolate flavor, just omit the cocoa powder and increase the coconut flour by 1/2 tbsp.

Enjoy. Today, we’ve conquered the bedroom closet.  Another two garbage bags full of clothes off to Goodwill, and we were able to whittle the contents of a very large closet down to this:

clothesTonight, we’ve got a huge bag of our socks to match up and put away (or toss).  We’re getting there, little by little.


Vietnamese Spring Rolls with Thai Peanut Sauce

I’ve gotten a few requests for the recipe for those spring rolls we made a couple of days ago, and to be honest, I didn’t really use a proper recipe. I will, however, give you some basic guidelines…the rest is up to you.

Vietnamese Spring Rolls

* 2 cups, cooked protein of choice (we shredded some leftover pork roast that we made using this recipe)
* 2 cups thin rice noodles, prepared via package instructions
* 1 baby bok choy, julienned
* 3 scallions, thinly diced
* 2 carrots, peeled and grated
* 12 sheets rice paper spring roll wrappers
* one large, shallow-bottomed baking dish (9×13 will work)
* warm water (in said dish)
*plates and wet paper towels (to keep the prepared rolls moist)

1. In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly mix first five ingredients. Run a knife through the mixture a few times to break the noodles into small pieces.
2. Fill baking dish with 1-2 inches of warm water. You may want to go ahead and set up an assembly line this point. Start with the stack of rice papers and the pan of water. Have a clean work space next and the bowl of filling, followed by a plate covered with wet paper towels.
3. Take one rice paper and gently lay into the water, fully submerging for ten seconds. Carefully remove the paper and lay on a clean work surface. Place a heaping tablespoon of filling about one third of the way down the paper. Fold down the top, keeping the filling together. Fold in the sides and roll until filling is completely sealed.
4. Place on plate and cover with wet paper towel until ready to serve.

This made twelve rolls. Keep in mind that these are served cold, so there’s no need to heat anything.

Thai Peanut Dipping Sauce

* 1/2 cup peanut butter
* 2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
* 1/4 cup soy sauce (tamari to be gluten free)
* 2 tsp molasses

Heat peanut butter in microwave. When easy to stir, add other ingredients and mix thoroughly. Let cool and serve alongside spring rolls.

Most of these ingredients are pretty easy to find; I did have to go the local Asian market to procure the rice papers.




Recipe, Cat-Quirks, Smelly Office Fish, Insanity, and Panini

First, check out my Crockpot Taco Soup Recipe!

I’m all about easy recipes.  I tossed the stuff in the crock pot on Tuesday, let it go all day, and we had a super-easy dinner when we got home.  Can’t beat that.

Check out Her Highness getting the spa treatment from Daddy:


Shelli-quirk factoid:  she doesn’t really like to be combed, but she LOVES to be brushed (which does nothing to remove hair).  What you can’t see in the pic is the brush in the floor that she’s rubbing her head on; it’s a bribe tool…she lets us comb her as long as she can roll around on the brush, and then when she gets irritated with the comb, she gets brushed as a reward.  Cats are weird.  But wonderful:).

So, someone brought fish into the office today for lunch.  Talk about breaking one of the foundational rules for maintaining harmony among coworkers.  If you’re going to funk up the office, expect to be talked about.  And Office Karma will get you.  I’m certain of that.

I was forced to take desperate measures to maintain my productivity…


After an amazingly deadly Insanity workout, we noshed on chicken-and-feta paninis on na’an.  I used a skillet as the weight.  I did wipe off the bottom first so we didn’t ingest skeevy incinerated-burner-dirt.  The sandwich was awesome.


I ate it with some cucumbers.  I turned in my paper.  And so commences the night of MST3K and The Smoking Gun Presents:  World’s Dumbest.  Peace out.

“Pushing Thirty” Ramblings and Recipe Link

Check out my recipe for Quinoa-Stuffed Red Peppers, over at my food blog, Eating Back to Good!

Sunday was my birthday.  I did not get a tattoo (*gasp*, I know).  I turned 29.  I’m having some emotional issues with it, really.  I don’t know…maybe I just continued to feel like I was really just a kid since I was still in my twenties.  That’s all going to be over soon.  Thirty.  It’s so…grown-up.  I know, you guys are laughing because I’m already crotchety enough to be Sophia from The Golden Girls.  I’m a skeptic, a cynic, and I’m sarcastic and grumpy.  If I’m already that way, I’m a little scared of what I’m going to be like in another thirty years.

But it’ll be on paper that I’m grown up.  It was also interesting to me this weekend hearing my parents and grandparents reminisce about their childhoods.  Both of my parents worked in the peach sheds when they were kids.  My grandma (Dad’s mom) did too.  They were doing hard labor, working with sometimes dangerous machinery.  I don’t really have anything interesting like that to reminisce about.  I have Rainbow Brite, My Little Ponies, He-Man, The Smurfs and about a zillion other pop culture references to look back on, but I really don’t have stories about what I accomplished.  I went to school.  I got made fun of in middle school because I was white.  I was smart and graduated near the top of my class.  But I worked as a receptionist at Weight Watchers.  It wasn’t particularly challenging or physically taxing.

I don’t know…I just feel like I kind of missed out on something.  On “Real Life?”  Maybe?  I don’t know.  I don’t really know how to process the feeling, but it was a little weird…like, really proud to be a part of a family with such an interesting and hard-working history, but a little sad that society had changed so much by the time I was born that I don’t have a lot of history to speak of.

Anyway…just some rambling, near-thirty introspection.  I now return you to your regularly-scheduled jocularity:

Recipe Link and Introspection

Recipe can be found here, on my food blog, Eating Back to Good! .  The exclamation point is part of the title…I’m not really that hyped;).

For the past several months, I’ve been pretty pissed about my life circumstances, and I’ve been blaming everything around me but myself.  I’m stuck, not able to pursue my dreams…I want to be a writer, but I don’t have time to write and, when I do, I don’t really feel like writing…I’m overweight, but I can’t muster up the motivation to do anything about it…and so it goes on.

Additionally, our social calendar has been virtually non-stop for the past year.  I’m not saying that we’re super-popular or anything…actually, our circle of friends is pretty small and close-knit.  The problem is that I can’t say “no.”  Will you come to this group meeting and bring [insert food item here]?  Sure.  Will you be able to make this extra rehearsal this weekend/stay late to practice?  Yep.  Will you come along with me for my pap smear? eh….ok?  (totally made the last one up).

This month, I’ve tried to make sure that we don’t have any more than one thing on the calendar per week (with the exception of a few friends who are family and are welcome at the house any time).  We just need to slow down.  It’s funny how much more time there is to write/knit/cook/exercise when we’re not running from place to place like a hamster on crack.

I’m reading Voluntary Simplicity by Duane Elgin; it was written in 1980, but thus far his views have been pretty timeless.  It’s interesting to me how much further society has gone down the path of consumerism/materialism/waste; Elgin’s concerns have been the same.  I don’t know if he’s still alive, but I’m sure he’s shaking his head if he is.

It’s time for another purging of stuff at chez Weaver.  There’s too much stuff in this house..stuff creates stress, clouds the mind, builds an environment of angst and frustration.  Trying to find underwear in a laundry basket that’s piled four feet high with clean laundry makes a weekday morning particularly unpleasant.  Trying to find the knitting project I want to work on among the pile of half-finished objects and tangled-yarn really pisses me off.  We’ve GOT to get rid of stuff.

The problem is the “getting off my arse” part.  I love to plan, write out lists, dream of how things will be when they’re simple and less stressful, but when it comes to folding the four-foot-high pile of laundry….well, it just doesn’t sound like something that I really want to fit in my day.  And thus, the underwear search soldiers on.

But, my belleh is full of quinoa-stuffed red peppers (recipe and photo coming soon) and I’m ready to knit some more…so I’m out.  If I don’t blog tomorrow, it’s because I’m lying at the bottom of the pile of laundry, without clean underwear.  *sigh*.

Recipe: Simple Roasted Root Vegetables (+ Brussels Sprouts)

I’ve had some turnips in the fridge since…well, Christmas.  I squeezed them a couple of days ago and they were still firm, so I decided that we should do some simple roasted Root Vegetables for easy meals.

First, I know Brussels Sprouts aren’t root vegetables, but it needed something green.


  • 4 turnips
  • 5 carrots
  • 5 red potatoes
  • 2 onions
  • 2 bags of frozen brussels sprouts


  • A couple of hours before cooking, thaw the brussels sprouts in a colander in the sink.  The colander will allow excess moisture from freezing to drain.
  • When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 425*
  • Cut vegetables into medium-sized chunks (probably around the size of your thumb).  Leave the onion chunks together (rather than separating the layers)
  • spray a baking sheet (you may need two or three depending on the size)
  • lightly salt the veggies and spread out onto one layer on the baking sheet.
  • Bake for about 45 minutes or until the vegetables are tender but have some dark “roasted” spots.
  • Serve warm with whatever seasonings you’d like!

The first time I had them this week, I added ketchup.  For lunch today, I added a little garlic powder, onion powder, basil and oregano, salt and pepper, and some parmesan cheese.  Yum!

Recipe: Mel’s Kickin’ Fajita Scramble


  • 1 egg + 2 whites, beaten together
  • fresh peppers and onions (I used green and red peppers)
  • leftover fajita vegetables (super-easy…sautee peppers and onions with taco seasoning until charred to a crisp..hehe)
  • diced or sliced fresh tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
  • 2 tbsp fat free sour cream
  • hot sauce
  • taco sauce


  1. toss fresh peppers and onions in a pan with leftover fajita veggies on medium heat.  Add fresh tomatoes after a minute or so.  They don’t need as long.
  2. when fresh veggies are still crunchy but have lost a little color, add eggs and scramble.  When almost firm, add hot sauce to taste and 2 tbsp parmesan cheese
  3. serve topped with taco sauce and sour cream

I ate mine atop a torn whole-wheat tortilla.

Grocery Budget Win, Dinner Win, Fitness Win

Ah…I finally had a day where I wasn’t super-overwhelmed by school and work and home and just everything.  Once I got my discussion posts done for yesterday, I was feeling pretty good, but now that I’m done with my one for my Asian American Lit class too, tonight’s gonna be a good night!!

Despite my misjudgment of the cheese situation, we still came in at under $45 for the week in groceries.  I’m really happy about this; this’ll be the second full week that we will have eaten all of our meals at home and avoided takeout.  We’ve had a couple of shifts this week as far as the menu plan went, but I’m doing my best not to get all perfectionist-paranoid on myself and to remember that it’s just a blueprint and that the important part is that we’re cooking and that we’re eating better.

I made falafel again tonight and made a few changes; I used cornmeal instead of the flour and I added two very big cloves of garlic.  It was still pretty good.  And here’s a food pic for you:

Yeah, I know…it looks kind of weird and gross.  It’s a Pumpkin Pancake!  After we did Brinner on Sunday night, I started thinking about how much healthier it would be to use something like solid-pack pumpkin in place of the liquid with the pancake mix.  So, the next morning, I took about 1/2 cup pancake mix, 1/2 cup solid pack pumpkin and a little sweetener (and just a splash of water) and made some very thick batter.  I had to actually smoosh the pancake out on the griddle  so it’d be thin enough to cook.  I added a little sugar-free maple syrup and Da-yam was this good!  I’ve done it twice this week and I’ll probably do it again tomorrow since I have a little pumpkin left to use.  Next, I’m going to try it with some of the frozen b-nut squash that I cooked back during my kidney stone debacle.

And my final triumph for the night?  We finally got back to the gym!  I almost punked out at the last minute, but Joey told me that, since I was already dressed and had tied my shoes (and was about a foot from the door), it was too late to back out.  I was glad that we went; I did the Random Hill program on the recumbent bike for about half an hour (set at Level 8…my calves are dying).  We also ran into two friends whom we hadn’t seen in a while!  We won’t go tomorrow because Katie’s coming over, but we’ll definitely head back Saturday.

That’s all I’ve got today, peeps.  It was a pretty decent day!  I’m always thrilled for those, especially since they’re happening more frequently these days.

Eating Whole Foods

Reading these sustainability blogs is killing me, mostly because I’m so jealous that I don’t have a yard full of “edible landscaping” to use in my meals or to put away for winter. Since I likely won’t be able to do any of that on a large scale until next year (although I think I will try to plant some things in pots while it’s still warm here in NC), I have decided to move toward eating more whole foods and eating more simply. I also want to start trying to buy local when I can afford it. Unfortunately, that probably won’t be very often right now as we’ve got to focus so much on frugality right now.

Since I was feeling “whole food-ish” tonight, I made a cold rice salad that was SUPER yummy!

I used:

  • 1 2/3 cup brown rice (cooked)
  • 1/4 cucumber, diced
  • 1 roma tomato, diced
  • a few sprinkles of shredded parmesan
  • a couple of tablespoons of light italian dressing

Just mix and dig in! It was absolutely marvelous, and eventually, I would want to make my own homemade italian dressing and buy some local cheese to use.

Joey and I also walked two miles this evening. We talked and talked (although slightly out of breath…it wouldn’t have been a workout otherwise). Honestly, I’m loving days like these, where I can come home and go for a liesurely walk and make a fabulous meal and then relax and blog and knit some and read.

I started the back of my tank top!

A Fruitful Evening!

I finally did what I’ve wanted to do almost every day of the week; I set a plan for myself and I followed through with it. When I got home from work, Joey and I took a very brisk walk around the neighborhood for a little over half an hour. Then, I cooked TWENTY pounds of potatoes. Yes, TWENTY. First, I made potato soup (yum!). Here’s my recipe:

  • a crap ton of potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks (we used Yukon Golds)
  • 3 cans of fat free chicken broth
  • 3 celery stalks
  • 2 onions
  • garlic powder
  • salt & pepper
  • milk (your choice. I took powdered milk and made it with twice as much powdered milk as called for)
  • A few instant potato flakes

Boil the potatoes in the broth until tender. At the same time, dice up the celery and onion and saute in a pan until soft. When potatoes are done, use a masher to break them up and make the more soupy. Add the onion/celery mixture and seasonings. Let cook for a little while and then add the milk and a handful of potato flakes to thicken it up. Serve with Cheddar Cheese!

The rest of the potatoes, we roasted in the oven with some olive oil, garlic powder, salt/pepper, and Italian herbs. They’ll be very good.

The soup ended up making ten servings, so Joey and I each had one for dinner and I put two in the fridge and froze the other six (in our saved egg-drop soup containers). We will have a few roasted potatoes tonight and then I’ll freeze them as well.

ALSO! In addition, I made a SUPER frugal yummy chicken salad today for my lunch at work tomorrow. Here’s how I did it!

  • picked the meat off a thigh and drumstick leftover from lunch on Sunday
  • in a tiny chopper (the little one with the button), chop 3 of the inner stalks of the celery and 1 dill pickle spear.
  • Add chicken to chopper and top with some light mayo and deli mustard
  • chop until satisfied with consistency.

I was totally amazed with how good the combo was and I’m totally psyched about my lunch tomorrow and about my FRUGALITY! I did the same with some tuna because I had more celery to use up before it rotted.

Today, I did really well to take care of myself. I ate right, exercised, was productive. That makes me feel like an adult, and I’m glad for that. I also got a LOT done on my knitting this weekend while spending endless hours watching the Olympics.

Oh, and the grad school app has left Charlotte. It will be at ECU tomorrow. I’m awash with relief and scared to death all at the same time.

It was a good day.