Veg Vixen in the Kitchen returns!

Last night I made my favorite vegetarian recipe: Tomato parmesan.

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But this time, I did something a little different: Since I found myself making a mess with (and using just a bit too much) olive oil, I mixed the cheese, oregano, basil and olive oil together first in a bowl. But I added just a few tablespoons of breadcrumbs for some extra pizzaz.

Let me tell you that just that small change made a huge difference – these were the best. tomatoes. yet!!
I first made (and wrote about) this dish here.

Making a cheesy, herby, oily mixture was so much neater and easier, while the breadcrumbs added a bit of extra crunch – and gave the topping an almost casino-like quality.
And since clams casino was one of my favorite dishes my dad made when I was young, I’m A-OK with that!

I put the tomatoes atop my trusty lemony-spray-buttery pasta (whole wheat for the first time, BTW), and it was c’est magnifique!

If you haven’t tried this recipe yet, what the heck are you waiting for?


Putting the ‘run’ back in ‘Run, Nikki, Run’

Lately, I’ve become very inspired by the Girl Child. She runs track at her middle school and recently decided that she wanted to tackle the mile, after doing really well at some of the other races.

Her father, aka The Fella (obviously), was a cross-country star when he was in high school, and the GC asked for him to start really training her this season. Over Easter break, he took her to his old running course out on Long Island (one of the best in the state, heard tell), and had her running on the beach, and today, her first track meet after all that running, she did great.

Yesterday, we took her to the track near our house, and as he continued to coach her and have her do drills, I set off to walk in lane 3, offering the GC bits of encouragement as she passed me and wistfully watched her run, wishing I could hold a pace like she does, instead of huffing and puffing for the rest of a lap after doing a measly 100.

Hers + his

I asked the fella what he would suggest I do as someone who desperately wants to get back into running.

“Jog a lap, walk a lap,” he replied, simply.
“I can’t do an entire lap,” I protested. “I can barely do the 100!”
“You’ve got to push yourself or what’s the point,” he retorted.
Touche, though he did get a snarky look in lieu of a reply.

So today, after getting back from the meet while it was still light out, I set out to the track, determined to run. Or jog, as it were.
To quote my beloved “Anchorman:” “I believe it’s jogging or yogging. it might be a soft j. I’m not sure but apparently you just run for an extended period of time. It’s supposed to be wild.”

I warmed up by walking to the track, and as soon as I hit the starting line, I started to “yog.” I wish I could say I jogged the whole lap, but I didn’t. But on most of my six laps, I did two bursts, including four 100s, and on one lap, did three bursts.

I was embarrassed by my incessant huffing and puffing, but carried on. I did get less huffy each time I did it – and know that the next time will get even less and so on and so forth. After four laps, though I could (in my mind) admirably quit for the day and walk home, I continued on for two more.
“You’ve got to push yourself or what’s the point,” said a wise man once.

Now that I’ve cooled down and showered, I feel great – tired, of course – but great. Alive. Limber. Ready to run again.
And after all, isn’t that the point of this here blog?? 


Binge or purge? Binge or purge?

After a particularly stressful past few weeks, I felt a bit of a binge coming on last night.

I let it take hold of me for a bit, but rallied my troops and thought that, instead of devouring every damn thing in every nook and cranny of the house in an epic binge, I would instead purge.

But wait, there’s more!
I didn’t purge in the sense that you may think.

I purged by cleaning up my closet, which has been plaguing me for weeks because of its messiness, sweaters hanging down, shirts not on hangers and just piled up on top of what was hanging. It was bad, especially since I am an anal-retentive neat freak.
Like I said, the past few weeks have been monsters!

After about 10 minutes of alternating folding, stacking, folding, stacking, I felt some of my anxiety subsiding. By the time I was done organizing and throwing some clothes into the bag for the Salvation Army, I was sound as a pound.

And most likely saved myself from a pound or two.