Carbo-Loading Lovin’

With classes almost over, finals coming up, and graduation just around the corner, I decided to treat myself tonight–with a Mediterranean pasta dish. When you put garlic, artichokes, pasta, feta, tomatoes, balsamic vinegar, and zucchini together you get something pretty close to heaven.

I get most of my inspiration from Pinterest these days, so naturally that’s where I found this recipe. I was led to this wonderful blog. The recipe was titled “Skinny Mediterranean Pasta.” Now normally I prefer recipes with tons of fat, but with my sorority formal tomorrow I didn’t want to take any chances. While there is skinny in the name, you wouldn’t know it! It was simply delicious.

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I’m a huge believer of good food that’s quick and easy–and this fit the bill. Boil some water for the pasta (you can choose any type of pasta you like!), then saute artichokes, onions, tomatoes, zucchini, and garlic–I also added sliced olives and roasted red pepper–and cook those until tender. Then add balsamic vinegar and voila! toss it all together and serve with crumbled feta for that added touch. (That was a quick version of the recipe but here is the real one). I made a huge pan and almost ate the whole thing.

I should treat myself to a leisurely, homecooked meal more often–cooking can be such a stress reliever. This recipe would be awesome chilled as well (maybe a lunch on a hot summer day??) If you love pasta like I do, check this recipe out. But until next time, keep eating!

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What’s for Dinner? Homemade Pizza

If you’re ever looking for a quick, easy meal, homemade pizza is your savior. Most grocery stores sell pre-made dough (I would love to learn how to make dough but it’s not very practical in a college dorm), and then pick up some cheese and whatever toppings you’re in the mood for and you’re good to go!

My friend and I were craving veggie pizza, so we practically sprinted to Shaw’s to pick up the ingredients (since it was raining and incredibly windy outside). We bought eggplant, red peppers, shredded mozzarella, tomato, and shallots–but if veggies don’t appeal to you, you can add whatever you want (try some pepperoni if you’re a meat lover, or different kinds of cheeses if you simply can’t get enough cheese). Buy any type of sauce–if you want to be adventurous, try a spicy sauce or even a white sauce! One of  the best things about pre-made dough is that it only takes about 15 minutes to cook–which was perfect because we were starving (a video of our food-making process will be in my next post).

And, since the whole purpose of my blog is to ‘spice up my life’ through food, I naturally added a myriad of spices to my pizza. If I tell you all the spices I used, you’d look at me crazy–but it turned out to be delicious. I suggest adding some garlic salt and Italian seasoning for some flavor.

Cooking food is one of the best activities to do on a rainy day and it lets you be creative! So if you ever need a cheap, quick, easy meal, go for the homemade pizza–it’s a crowd pleaser. But until next time, keep eating!

The Joys of Late Night Eating

As my time as a college student is coming to an end, I can proudly say I’ve learned many things. One thing (aside from what I learned in school of course) is that all college kids know how to master the art of eating between the ages of midnight and 5am. These are what we call the ‘prime hours,’–any college student could tell you. These are the times when you’ll want to have some chips or Easy Mac at hand (all that greasy food that I know you’ve bee trying to avoid).

I’m not going to lie, I am strong advocate of late night eating. While everyone says it can be one of the worst things to do for your body (but then again how else would you gain the freshman fifteen that I mentioned in an earlier post?), there is nothing I enjoy doing more than getting back from a night out and immediately stuffing my face with the worst food possible. My food of choice: pizza.

In Boston, you’ll come to find, that one of the most popular places for late night eating is T’Anthony’s (aside from 2am Dominos delivery of course). There’s something about their pizza that makes it so popular–especially within the late night crowd. The combination of the grease, cheese, and crust will satisfy your late night craving instantly. I’m a huge fan of the crust and T’ Anthony’s pizza crust has earned a spot among my favorites.

If you like classier pizza, check out Otto, a pizza place that recently opened up on Commonwealth Ave. in the heart of BU’s campus. And let me tell you, it’s not just your average pizza. One of my personal favorites is the pulled pork and mango pizza–not your typical combination, but it works! It’s on the lighter side, which I appreciate, you might end up finding yourself eating three or four slices in one sitting. If you’re ever in the area and are craving pizza, check out either one of these places! But until next time, keep eating!

My College Life Without a Kitchen–Get Ready Because it’s not Going to be Pretty

I seem to be in a throwback kind of mood this week and it got me thinking about all the food I’ve had over my four years at Boston–most of it amazing, but some of it that’s just god-awful (and leaves me wondering ‘what was I thinking??’). So here it goes.

The college experience wouldn’t be the same if no one gained weight–it’s just a fact of life. While most people gain the ‘freshman fifteen,’ I seemed to also pile on the ‘sophomore seven‘. How does this happen? It’s simple, really.  Take carb-heavy dining hall food (“sure, I’ll have more mashed potatoes and maybe a side of fries…”) and combine it with the Junk Food Wonderland that becomes part of daily existence. I must have thought that never having unlimited pizza at home justified me eating about 5 slices… I ate everything from Easy Mac, to ice cream sandwiches, to Lays, an endless amount of Dominos pizza, and quite sadly the list goes on and on. Somebody was either ordering, bringing in, going out for or in the mood for something greasy, salty, fatty or just plain BAD.  And talk about a group dynamic—all it takes is two people and suddenly, you’re outnumbered.  The idea of a salad or a turkey sandwich disappears instantly, to be replaced by a cheddar-bacon-triple-stacked Gutbuster burger and a side of fries.

Now that I have my own apartment my junk food days are behind me (or at least I tell myself that….I caved and had KFC the other week), and I have switched to a more balanced and healthier diet. While I have to admit I do get lazy and end up making frozen food, I couldn’t imagine my life if I had to rely on the dining hall for all my meals. But that’s not to say I don’t splurge and get the greasiest food known to mankind once in a while, it would be a lie if I said I didn’t. And as a bonus, I do have to say eating better has helped me drop the unwanted pounds (that, and about a zillion steps on the elliptical….). So I hope you all take the time to splurge once a while and get that greasy burger with a side of fries (that I know you all secretly want, even if you don’t admit to it)–no one is going to judge you 🙂 But until next time, keep eating!

A Moveable Feast–City Living and Having to Travel with Groceries

The one downside to living in a city without a car? Grocery shopping. At home you simply go to the grocery store and when you’re done, load up your trunk and off you go. Here in Boston, you have to lug all your groceries back to where you live, counting every step while trying to figure out how 3 bags of groceries can weigh 1,000 pounds.

The past two years I have had the luxury of living in an apartment on campus. This means I don’t have to suffer through dining hall meals. It also means I have to cook all my meals myself.  Don’t get me wrong, I love to cook, I just wish I could have the food supplies I need instantly teleported to my apartment without ever having to set one foot inside a grocery store. Yet I do have to say, I have just about perfected my grocery purchasing skills. Here’s my advice: If you do have to walk a far distance home, try to avoid liters of soda or gallons of milk (unless they are an absolute must; or buy them once and they’ll last you a while). DO buy bread; it’s nice and light! Frozen, easy to cook veggies, can be manageable, just keep it to a few bags. Keep canned items to two per bag and load up on fresh fruit. Except for grapefruit or watermelon, fruit is fairly light (learn to love grapes).

Bagging is another obstacle I have overcome. It’s all about balance. Put ONE or TWO of your heaviest items in one bag and then pack the rest of the bag with lighter options. Always choose paper over plastic because they’re sturdier and better for the environment (now you can say you did your part).

The absolute best grocery tactic? If, in fact, you’ve gone overboard and feel like you’re carrying two barbells, do what I do—and look for the cutest guy around. Then quickly—and quietly—break one of the handles on your bag.

Until next time, keep eating!