This is just a brief interlude from my usual travel writing to post a few things I've learned about from reading blogs. While I'm terrible about updating my own, I've become quite the avid reader. I like checking my google reader every night, and I've "met" so many wonderful people through reading blogs and have tried my best to comment and let you all learn a little about me so I don't feel like a total stalker. I love that I can learn so much from you all, that I have found so many people with interests similar to mine and who I feel really understand me. No offense to my real life friends! I love you all equally and that's why I want to share these things with you.
The first thing I've heard about from several beautiful women in Blogville is Operation Beautiful. Since I'm interested in fitness and eating well, happiness and health, etc, I read many blogs written by women who are striving for the same thing and are actively trying to change the way society views health and beauty as well as the pressure to fit the mold. Seriously, the diet fads and advertisements and obsession with losing weight/ bulking up, slimming down, or being "bikini ready", or losing "20 lbs in a week" is way out of control. This is where Operation Beautiful comes in. I think it's a wonderful project and though I've thought of ways I could contribute, I was finally compelled enough to act yesterday. I'll try and post the picture I took with my phone, I'm sorry for the terrible quality!
You mean you don't have supernatural vision? Okay, this was an ad for a local plastic surgeon in a magazine and the tag line was "Love your body". Obviously my reaction was "What the...?!?!" Yeah right, love your body after paying lots of money to "fix" it? So I found a highlighter, did a lot of crossing out of the plastic surgeons info and under "Love your body" I added in "...Just the way it is". I felt very proud of myself, and put the magazine back on the shelf. Oh and in case anyone was worried, I did not mess up anything that was for sale! This was at central market, just one of the old magazines they have to read while you eat.
The second thing I did was participate in another recipe contest. You know I can't pass up an opportunity to experiment in the kitchen! Especially when it involves peanut butter because I'm addicted to the stuff. Almost to the extent of needing help for my addiction to all things nutty, but if I got help then I might not eat as much peanut butter and then what kind of life would that be? See what I mean?
This is my entry for the Great Peanut Butter exhibition #8 being held by the incredible Peanut Butter Boy. The only thing we had to do was create a recipe using peanut butter and ____ (a second ingredient). Easy huh? But of course you have to be ultra creative with it, the crazier the better. So my fill in the blank ingredient is ....drumrollllllllllllllllllllllll.....BEETS!!! I love beets, I love peanut butter, why not? I eat really weird things anyways and have actually eaten sliced beets spread with peanut butter before and I swear it works.
While it didn't turn out to be the greatest dessert recipe ever, it's quite good. Good enough for me to eat half the casserole dish in one day. Without further ado, here it is:
Peanutt-y Beet Souffle
16 oz can of beets
1 package silken tofu
1/4 cup of sugar (feel free to use any other sweetener such as agave, honey, etc to suit your needs)
1/4 cup of flour (any flour will do here, I actually used quinoa flour and it worked perfectly, so gluten free readers, you can still enjoy this!)
1/4-1/3 cup of peanut butter
pinch of baking powder
*Throw all of that in a blender and mix until smooth
* Mix together-
1/4 cup of coconut flakes
1/4 cup wheat germ
1/4 cup sugar
*Sprinkle on top of beet blend
*Bake in 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes
*Then I warmed up about another 1/4-1/3 cup (just use several spoonfuls!) of peanut butter with agave and drizzled it on top.
While it didn't turn out as bright purple as I was hoping it would for aesthetic purposes, the pictures still show the nice gooey texture of the souffle and the crispy peanut-y topping :) Some crushed peanuts on top would be good too. Next time!
Enjoy the pictures, and if you're brave enough, I encourage you all to both try the recipe, or at least the beet/ peanut combo. And also keep Operation Beautiful in mind next time you're out or reading magazines, or watching tv, or going shopping (or doing anything involving not living under a rock).
(EDIT: I added a few substitution ideas to my recipe in order to also enter it into the SOS Kitchen challenge hosted by Kim and Ricki who are both great resources for people with special diet needs, or people who just like really great recipes)