Gastro Grub Getaway

Sometimes you just need to get out of the house or alter from your routine. This weekend I have worked Friday-Sunday and was in a funk. Working when my friends have off tends to do that to me. Anyways, I had texted my neighbor the other day asking if she wanted to order in food sometime and watch a movie and we made plans immediately. But being indecisive about food and wanting to just get out and "get away" we decided to go to the neighboring St. Paul Street Gastro Grub (which I keep calling the Gastro Pub...) We drove because it was freezing, but it's easily walkable from our house. It's cozy and welcoming as well, but you need to know where to find it because there is no sign. We grabbed a spot at the bar and ordered a beer. I went with Smuttynose Blackberry something...in honor of the twin who is running the Napa Valley Marathon today. She's going to crush it. I have no doubt in my mind.

Then we were having so much trouble deciding what to eat. The food is definitely pub-style food, but it's good! They have a typical burger, nachos and wings, but also a hand dipped corn dog, fried brie, truffle fries and a fried chicken sandwich. We decided to split an appetizer (the fried brie) and an entree (the fried chicken sandwich). Both were great choices! May be the best fried chicken sandwich I have had.

I left feeling full, but not overly stuffed and happy that I got my fry-fix. It's been a while since I had fries and this past week one of my classrooms kept smelling like fries and so I had been craving some. Some days you just want fries and a burger or fries and fried brie ;) Role with it. It isn't an every day occurrence. I have to admit I was feeling guilty ordering these items since my cholesterol was high the other day, but on most days I choose unsaturated fats and going out with friends doesn't happen that often.

On another note this was just the evening I needed. I love staying in and catching up with friends, but there is something else about sitting at a bar casually having a drink (just one) and getting to know each other. We chatted for a few hours and nobody seemed to mind that we were just hanging out (at this point just drinking water). We made some plans to watch a chick flick soon (because we talked too much to watch one after) and go to yoga. It's so great making new friends and even better when you can plan things to look forward to!

Great night and highly recommend the Gastro Grub.

What I Ate Wednesday: Long Run

These are all my eats (and adventures) on the day of a long run. I woke up early to get some coffee and fuel before my run. Typical toast with peanut butter and jelly and a banana with more peanut butter. Double cup of coffee on the side. Enjoyed in my polka dot bathrobe.

My schedule called for an 8 mile easy run today. Rebecca and I met up at 7:30 and spent the next hour and a half chatting about this, that, and everything. I love our runs! Luckily it was slow today because the sidewalks weren't in the best shape. I guess that's winter in Vermont for ya. I'm just not used to it because we haven't had this much snow in a while (aka years).

After my run I came home to have a quick snack. I was hungry! I had an apple and a glass of chocolate milk. Let me tell you chocolate milk after a run tastes A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. You get carbs, protein, fluid, and sodium all in one. Talk about a perfect post-run food. Or just a perfect food.

Then I went cross country skiing for the first time in two years (in Vermont)! I went a few weeks back with my sister in New Hampshire, but I struggled with sticky snow then. Today was so perfect. Shining sun, not too cold, and great company. We haven't had much time to catch up so it was great. So glad Colleen had the day off today even if it was a quick trip! We spent an hour on the trails before going to get bagels.

Let's talk bagels. This week I went to the right place to use my coupon and was not disappointed. Colleen told me to try the Vermont Country bagel which is sesame, poppy, flax, salt, and fennel. The fennel added such a delicious, subtle flavor! I got plain cream cheese and some peanut butter on the side (try the combo). Sometimes I worry about the amount of peanut butter that I eat...but then I remember how delicious it is. I also needed some protein and since a bagel with cream cheese was free, just opted for some extra nut buttah. I'll be dreaming about this bagel for a while now...

I came home and showered for the longest time because I was so cold from running and then skiing. But it was all so worth it.

After showering I took up a spot on the futon because I was tiredA Could actually have used a nap, but instead found myself on Instagram (guilty pleasure) and then watching Chicago Med (another guilty pleasure). I snacked on some carrots as my hunger kicked in.

A few hours later I was hungry again (just go with it Megan) so I tried one of my granola bars, which had MORE peanut butter. I was going to have some soup and then thought of a yogurt, but I really wanted to try a granola bar. So I listened to my cravings and had one. I followed the recipe that Erin recently posted for Trail Mix Peanut Butter Granola Bars. I used steel cut oats, rolled oats, and wheat bran for the dry ingredients and maple syrup, mixed nut butter, and peanut butter for the sticky ingredients. Unfortunately I didn't pay close enough attention to realize these were "no bake" and when I didn't have coconut oil I subbed canola oil...which turned out to be too "liquidy" to hold the bars together. So I added a big scoop of peanut butter (probably 1 1/2 to 2 tablespoons more)...more staying power! For my mix-ins I used raisins and chopped chocolate from my freezer. They certainly aren't as pretty as the ones Erin made, but it's a work in progress and they taste delicious so that helps. Now I have muffins, energy balls (still loving) and granola bars for snacks this week...Not to mention that I have been trying to have more yogurt for snacks...good thing I am always hungry because I am overflowing in snacks.

And now I am hungry AGAIN and thinking of what to have for my third...or fourth snack of the day. Listening to my hungry and not feeling guilty about it. Having some yogurt and feeling much better!

Originally my plans had been to be a complete bum all day before having to work this weekend. But lucky for me, Christine texted me. I couldn't help but get excited when she asked "What are you doing tonight???" Good thing she knows the way to my heart and was not suggested a wild night, but actually a girls night in. Just. What. I. Needed/Wanted.

I got to her house around 6:30pm. We had been tossing dinner ideas back and forth including whether to order in or cook. We decided it could be fun to cook and found a take out recipe that we could cook ourselves. Last week I saw these egg roll bowls while reading The Real Life RD's blog and I had been waiting for an excuse to try it! Although I hate cutting cabbage...it just multiplies...

Cooking with friends (in a big kitchen!) is one of my favorite things. Especially when you can gossip and drink wine in your sweats while doing it. I brought over a bottle of Apothic Crush that Christine fell in love with. I love all Apothic flavors, but Apothic Red will always have my heart. Christine had some other wine that was quite tasty! Any wine that calls the flavor "jammy" I have to try. I love jam...

Getting back to dinner. I bought some peanuts, scallions, and sesame oil this week at Shaws to inspire more ethnic dishes and let me tell you I am SO glad I did. The peanuts made the dish and I forgot how much I love peanuts, it's no wonder I love nut butter. Also, tip: look for sesame oil in the international section. By the olive oil the price is nearly double! Crazy, I know.

Christine and I were gushing over this dish. So much so that we both wanted more and nearly cried of happiness when we saw that it serves two. Thinking critically, the dish is almost all vegetables except for the meat. So we polished off this wok of egg roll goodness. With wine of course.

I'm being completely honest here with my eats and saying that even though I was stuffed, I did have chocolate. I brought over the Valentine's day heart that I bought myself and we tried a few of the flavors. Roman nougat is so weird...legitimately looks like bubble gum on the inside. And fruit and nut caramel is so dang chewy I nearly choked on it. Christine refused to try the orange cream. Seriously, who likes orange cream? I also had two homemade Reese's because...do I need a reason? So delicious.

We ended up just talking for hours and lounging on her extremely comfy couch. Next time maybe we will watch a movie...if we don't just end up talking again! Love friendships that are this easy :)

On my drive home I was stuffed and found myself craving all the fruit and vegetables on Saturday. Our bodies are amazing aren't they?!