Chicken Parmesan Burgers

So I saw this recipe on Lauren’s website.  What is exciting is this recipe was recently published in Cooking Light as a reader submission.   Check out Lauren’s site HERE and the full recipe HERE.  Since my mailman hates me…not really, but my mail is so slow, I saw it on the blog before the magazine.  Anyways, I finally made it for dinner tonight and all I can say is YUMMY!  You need to try these burgers.  They are so easy to make and taste great.  Plus, I got to use my new skillet.

Overnight Oats

I have been looking through some other popular blog sites for fun ideas.  It still amazes me that some of these sites get 80-100 comments a day.  Crazy!  Anyways, I came across something called overnight oats and I knew I needed to give them a try.  I love oatmeal!  It is so filling,  but as the weather gets warmer I don’t always want a hot breakfast in the morning.  Overnight oats require a little preparation (hence the name) but they are super easy to make and then ready for you when you wake up.  Everyone does things a little different, but this is the recipe I made last night.

 

Overnight Oats (basic recipe adapted by me)

1/2 cup raw oats

1 cup Almond milk (or any other milk).  You can also use half cup milk and half cup water.

~2 Tbsp Chia seeds or Flax

1 tsp vanilla

1/2 mashed banana

-Mash your banana in a separate bowl.

-Mix the other ingredients into a breakfast bowl.  Stir in the banana.  Cover and refrigerate overnight.

-Wake up and eat your breakfast!

This is what everything looks like the night before

Good Morning Oats!

I am ready to try them…

But first, I add the other 1/2 banana.

The texture of the oats is not at all what I expected…it’s smoother and creamier.  The taste is fabulous…I see why everyone is blogging about them!  It was a yummy breakfast and something I can’t wait to make again.  Especially for the mornings when I eat breakfast after the gym on my way to work.  I am also ready to explore with some add-ins.  Most of the oat recipes that I have seen include Chia Seeds, but I am all out.  Planning to pick some up today at the Whole Foods.  I also have seen many of the bloggers add peanut butter on top for some added protein.

Check out these websites for TONS of other great overnight oat recipes and adorable parfaits.  They will definitely get your excited about breakfast and inspired to spruce up your morning bowl of oatmeal!  I am off to the pool!

Kath Eats Tribute to Oatmeal

Oh She Glows

Pizza Night

I don’t remember when I started the race day pizza dinner tradition.  I think it was after a half marathon, but I have carried it over to 8K’s, 10K’s and the occasional 5K.  I used to live by a Homemade Pizza Co. and their whole wheat pizza with spinach, tomato, and pineapple was my favorite. I know it sounds odd, but you have to try it!

Since we had the time, I decided it would be fun to do a "Make Your Own" pizza night tonight.  I bought this refrigerated dough at TJ’s.  Whole wheat for me and regular for the BOY.  At 99¢, how could I go wrong.

There’s a place in the city that has an amazing roasted eggplant pizza.  I thought I would try to replicate it.  It is a white pizza with an amazing garlic and olive oil flavor.  The BOY was nice enough to grill me some eggplant and zucchini.  For the first time, I "sweat" my eggplant by adding salt to the cut eggplant and then waiting 30 minutes.  I added some garlic and basil and it tasted great!

I was able to roll out my dough without difficulty.

The BOY, on the other hand, had quite a hard time.  He gave up and tried to throw away his dough like 9 times.

I added some provolone cheese, my veggies, some olive oil and extra spices before placing it in the oven.

The boy made this beautiful pizza (with meat under the cheese and he added more on the top), but couldn’t pry it off the surface.  He was about to give up AGAIN when I suggested turning it into a calzone.  He grilled his calzone and although he wasn’t thrilled, it turned on tasty, but a little undercooked.  He was a bit shy about me taking a picture and sharing his creation.

My pizza came out and the dough was cooked well.  Unfortunately, the veggies lost some of their grilled flavor. I think next time I will use a herbed olive oil (and maybe cut my veggies smaller) AND a store-bought crust for the BOY.

I Did It!

Race season has begun!

What a beautiful day for a run!  I can’t believe it is 80 degrees AND sunny!  Perfect for the 40,000 people registered for the Shamrock Shuffle 8K in downtown Chicago.  If you remember, I had set a goal of running this race in under 40 minutes with an average of 8 minute miles. 

Yesterday, my friend and I decided we should ride our bikes the 6 miles to Grant Park…our own little duathalon.  I was so excited to finally be able to ride again in the nice weather, but a little nervous that I would be tired for the run.  But the idea of the adventure won out!  Because there were so many people in the corrals, we had to wait 30 minutes before we even started.  The only bad thing about that is that the last mile and a half were pretty warm (and tiring!).  My first mile was pretty fast (7:21), and I finished in 39.17, reaching my goal.  I even had enough energy to ride back up north for lunch at a fabulous local restaurant.

It’s time for a rest and then the plan is the traditionally post-race pizza dinner!

What Do You Get?

When you mix whole wheat pasta…

With sautéed garlic spinach….

Some grilled mushrooms and scallops…

With a splash of olive oil and a dash of parmesan?

My pre-race dinner!

Back in the day when I lived in Evanston, I LOVED going to Dave’s Italian Kitchen for pasta.  I’ve always liked pasta, but never really loved it.  I don’t crave it like other people I know and usually only eat it a few times a year.  When I lived alone, I didn’t even have any in the house.  But before a race, I truly enjoy a bowl of whole wheat pasta.  At Dave’s, I used to create this shrimp and scallop dish with Aglio Olio and added spinach. It was phenomenal!  Almost as good as their chocolate mousse!  Now that Evanston is a hike, I make my own pre-race pasta dinner.  Since today was the first real warm day of the spring, the BOY was in full-on grill mood.  So he grilled the scallops and mushrooms and I made my pasta.  All I can say is DELISH!!!  I don’t know if it’s because I forgot how good grilled seafood is or if I am just getting better with my seasonings in the kitchen, but tonight’s pasta was the best I’ve ever made!

Now, if only I had some chocolate mousse for dessert?!

Wish me luck tomorrow!

Race Day Prep

Good Morning!!!  The benefit of pre-race day, is that I get to sleep in a little and do a light workout.  This gives me time to make a fun new breakfast…

I have to start by thanking Chelsey for this amazing breakfast recipe.  I made her whipped banana Scottish oats this morning and they are FABULOUS!  I have no idea what makes it Scottish, but who cares!  The BOY took the last pear to work, so I used apple instead.  I had a little trouble grinding my oats…my mini food processor started to smell like smoke before the oat texture changed, but that’s okay.  This delicious and filling breakfast was perfect on this gloomy morning.  You HAVE to try it!!!

I ate my oatmeal with a TAZO Chai latte.  I used my Chai tea with water, 1/4 cup of milk, and a dash of agave.  Awake lattes are my favorite Starbucks drink, and although I don’t have any sugar-free vanilla syrup at home, this is a close second (with a lot less calories).

 

Now I have the energy to figure out how to get myself downtown tomorrow for this 40,000 person 8K run in Grant Park!  It is supposed be 70 degrees!  How Crazy!

Some Memphis Love!

We had a fantastic weekend in Memphis.  Although Chicago will always be home, it feels great to get back to Memphis.  I could not have asked for a better weekend in terms of weather and as always we had great company!  We were able to hit up a few of our favorite restaurants and although my fingers are a little puffy from all that sodium, it was totally worth it!  Here are a few pictures from our adventures…

The first stop is the BOY’s favorite…

Check out his T-shirt…can you tell he’s excited?!

A full plate of WORLD FAMOUS fried chicken…

GONE!  No room for our favorite sweet potato pie.

A quick rest and then we’re on to our first of two trips to the Flying Saucer for beer and pretzels.  The Saucer has more beers on tap then any other place I have seen.  Plus, if you’ve met me once, there is a good chance that I’ve mentioned the soft pretzels served with queso at the Flying Saucer.  I love to wash them down with a wheat beer!

The next day we went to the Flying Fish for fish tacos, fried shrimp and hush puppies.  Unfortunately, I ate my food so quickly that I wasn’t able to take a picture.  We spent the rest of the day bumming around Beale Street enjoying some live music, sunshine, and of course more beer and pretzels (at our second trip to the Saucer).

It was sad to leave Memphis, especially saying goodbye to our friends.  But, it is time to enjoy a meal that is not fried!  We are both looking forward to our next trip to the mid-south!  And trying to convince our friends to come up north for some Chicago favorites…once the weather warms up of course!

Heading to the South

The BOY and I are heading down to Memphis for the weekend to visit some old friends and of course eat some fabulous food!  The bad news is…no weekend posts…the good news, I will share our favorite Memphis food with ya’ll.  Those of you who visited me when I lived in Memphis, you will definitely be JEALOUS!  See you next week!

Photos Taken by ME back in my Southern Days

Mississippi River Path                                                                                            Memphis Sunset