Thursday, March 31, 2011

Curried Tomato and Peanut Butter Sauce

This a quick recipe you can toss together after work. It has a unique flavor and richness from the reduced-fat peanut butter. I will explain how I made it later in the post.

The weather continues to be almost 20 degrees below average here. Needless to say I am totally ready for the temperature to increase a little. Thankfully there hasn’t been any snow yet, and that is a very good thing. *fingers crossed* Let’s hope it stays that way.

Dan had his usual oatmeal with: wheat germ, freshly ground flaxseed, cinnamon, powdered ginger, wild blueberries, walnuts, and stevia.

Once I got Dan’s breakfast made and lunch packed I was ready to leave the house when Dan headed to work. I have a number of “typical routes” through the neighborhood all mapped out depending on my mood and the weather. There is a 1 mile, 1 ½ mile, 3 and 3 ½ mile that I take depending on how I am feeling in the morning and what temperature it is outside. There are many days I start out going a mile and do that two or even three times. I have the other paths mapped out for variety, and because I like to know how far and how fast I have gone. Something tells me you aren’t surprised to hear that I have this all recorded so I can chart my activity. ;-) I think all numbers geeks like to record things, food, exericse, to-do lists, etc.  LOL

After I got home I did some strength training knowing that Tuesday I would be far too rushed in the morning to work out.  Then it was time for my breakfast. It was cold outside which meant my breakfast on Monday was savory oatmeal. This batch was made with: oats, water, wheat germ, freshly ground flaxseeds, nutritional yeast, cumin, oregano, no salt seasoning and chili powder. I topped the oats with wilted baby spinach, artichokes and a sauce of sun-dried tomatoes, smoked paprika, cumin and sherry vinegar.

For some reason Monday is rarely a good day at my house. However some Monday’s are worse than others and this one was particularly annoying. I have been very spoiled by having a hubby who is great with computer which means I just expect technology to work when I need it. Sadly I don’t really care how technology works, just that it does. Getting my first computer virus was eye opening to say the least. Once it was infected my computer locked up and that was it. All I could do was wait for Dan to come home and fix the problem. Since Dan knew he was taking off on Tuesday he worked very late on Monday which meant my laptop was down until Tuesday morning. My friend Louis tells me I need a technology free day and Monday was it. Even though I had my smart phone it wasn’t the same. ;-) Thankfully things are back to normal here now from a technology perspective but it wasn’t pretty for about 24 hours. I have no idea how I ever managed without technology now.

My lunch was leftover mushroom ragu over polenta. Yay for intentional leftovers. At least that went well on Monday right? LOL

Wow it is quiet here without technology. How did we live without my laptop to carry from room to room? I could have used the computers in Dan’s home office but I like to use my laptop in the family room. Not to mention all my blog “stuff” is only saved on my laptop which meant that Dan’s computer wasn’t really much help. I really need to start backing up my laptop on the server like Dan always suggests. LOL

Without a computer to distract me I spent a couple of hours doing things at home (it sorely needed it), and then did some reading. It was a relaxing day, but I didn’t things done that I had planned which is always a little frustrating. The worst part of not getting things done is that they just wait for tomorrow. Only tomorrow (Tuesday) we will be out all day so that means they wait until Wednesday. But on Wednesday I have two appointments, a run to Costco and then cooking class. Are you getting the idea what the week has in store for me? ;-)

Dinner was a simple curried tomato and peanut butter sauce with carrot, peas, corn green beans and broccoli. Dan had his over quinoa (for the extra calories) and I had mine over broccoli. The sauce is similar to this recipe only I didn’t add the coconut milk and substituted Indian seasonings (turmeric, black mustard seeds, cumin, coriander, cinnamon, cardamom, hot peppers, and black pepper). This sauce gets its richness from the peanut butter and lots of flavor from the spices and aromatics. You can use this flavor combination to make soup, or a sauce over vegetables or to top whole grains. I think it is as useful as marinara.

Happy Thoughts:

• I am very happy to have a handy husband. Dan and I have very different talents in spite of the fact that our formal education is almost identical. I have learned to rely on Dan’s technical abilities and am thankful that he has them.

• Normally I would have gotten upset about the computer problem but instead I went about my day and found other things to do. It is days like this that I am thankful for growing old gracefully. At least some things get better with age. ;-) Now if I could just learn to love my grey hair. LOL, that isn’t likely to happen.

• It was great to have such a wide selection of books to choose from when I was looking for something to keep myself busy instead of the work I needed to do on my computer.   I guess that I  could have cleaned the house.  Who said that?  LOL

• Also I am thankful to my friend Amy for convincing me to use the library again which is something I hadn’t done since grad school. I love being able to read books or preview exercise DVDs before committing to purchasing them. Given my book and video library I need to be more selective of the things I bring into the house now.

• I love that this is a four day work week for my sweetie. As you all know we love to spend time together which means we were both looking forward to Tuesday in DC. We haven’t been to the Cherry Blossom Festival since 1997 which means it was definitely time to go again. Since most of the week was forecast to be gray and rainy it is great that Dan’s schedule is flexible enough that he can take time off to coincide with nice weather.

• As I walked around the neighborhood this morning I couldn’t help but notice all the beauty around me. Most mornings I will pass others out walking their dog or just getting in some exercise and everyone says hello. People in our neighborhood are generally very friendly which I really appreciate. We are very fortunate to love where we live since not everyone can say the same thing.

Signing Out:

I can’t believe it is already Thursday and that I am just now posting Monday. How did I get this far behind? *shakes head* Wish me luck that I can get a little more accomplished tomorrow. Friday is supposed to be another rainy day and I ran to Costco on Wednesday so ….. hopefully I will be able to focus on things at home tomorrow once I have checked on my parents.

I hope you are having a great week. Talk to you again tomorrow.


  1. I am going to have to try savory oatmeal for my hubby.. I think he may like it.
    Blessings, Debra
    Raw Vegan Diet

  2. Oh, my goodness, the only time I lose my cool is when technology doesn't work. It sounds like you handled it with grace and poise!

  3. your dinner looks amazing! i'm jealous ;)

  4. Question about your artichoke hearts: How do you get such big, yummy chunks? Do you simply use humongous artichokes, or do you buy them frozen? Mine just NEVER look that appetizing...

  5. Debbie,

    I do typically buy my artichokes frozen and they aren't always cut the same size in the package. Sometimes they are in halves, other times quarters. I do have to cut them them to make the sizes similar. ;-) Thanks for asking I never thought to mention that.



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