Hey there friends!
How’s your morning going so far? Did anyone spend some time on Pinterest after yesterday’s post? Was it as addictive for you as it is for me?! I’m pleased to report that I managed to pry myself away for long enough yesterday to try some new things, so here’s the run-down for Try Something New Tuesday 65!
1. Recipe of the Week: For me, summer means cramming in ans many meals on the barbecue as possible. While I haven’t yet tried to make any breakfasts on my ‘cue, there have been plenty of grilled veggies, burgers, chicken, fish, and fruit coming off of the grill lately. One of my most recent creations was pretty bomb, which is why I think it deserves Recipe of the Week status this week. May I present: Cajun Lime Shrimp Skewers with Grilled Summer Squash.
The beauty of this is that it can be made really really quickly. You only need to marinade the shrimp for an hour in order for them to absorb the lime flavour, and since they’re already cooked, they only need to be on the barbecue for long enough to become heated throughout. Oh, and you might want to get a few grill marks on them too, because in my opinion, that’s always the best part.
2. Liberte Svelte yogurt. If you’ve been browsing the smoothies list on my recipes page lately, you might notice that several of the earlier ones contain those 100g snack-sized fruit flavoured yogurts. I’m not particularly brand loyal when it comes to that type of yogurt – I’ll usually buy whatever’s cheapest out of Astro, Silhouette, Source, or the store brand equivalent. However, deep down, the healthy foodie in me knows that these yogurts aren’t really all that good for you. Some contain artificial sweeteners and colourings – the same ones I’ve been trying to eliminate from my eats for so long. Since some of the super amazing US yogurt brands (hello Chobani!) aren’t available in Canada yet, my go-to brand for Greek yogurt is Liberte.
This weekend, rather than reaching for a pack of snack-sized yogurts, I decided to try one of Liberte’s regular yogurts. Enter, the plain fat-free Liberte Svelte.
Did I have it on its own? Nah, I’m far more creative than that! Yesterday morning, I put some in a container with some frozen strawberries, blueberries, and pineapple. By the time I was ready for some snacking at work, the fruit had thawed just enough to release some of its (non-artificially-sweetened and non-artificially coloured) juices into the yogurt.
In addition to squeaky clean ingredients…
…I also love this yogurt because it has more of a creamy consistency than the other brands I’ve purchased. It’s nowhere near as thick as Greek yogurt, but if you’re trying to wean yourself off of flavoured yogurts, I’d suggest mixing it up just like in the photo above. ‘Twas delicious!
3. Bikram yoga. For the past 6 months or so, it seems that the WagJags, Groupons, and TeamBuys for my area have been for things that I don’t need – electrolysis, car maintenance, bowling, and window treatments have been the most common. However, I was thrilled last week when the daily Groupon arrived in my inbox for Bikram yoga, a style of yoga that I haven’t tried yet. To date, my favourite type has been Moksha (reviewed here). Knowing that Bikram was a little different, I wanted to try it out. This also fell under one of my goals for this month, which is to try at least 3 forms of fitness that I don’t normally do. Perfect!
I plan to do a post soon on the main differences that I noticed between Moksha and Bikram, but for now, this pretty much sums up what Bikram is all about (from the Bikram Yoga KW website):
“A challenging series of 26 postures and two breathing exercises suitable for all ages and levels of ability. Each posture stretches and strengthens specific muscles, ligaments and joints needed for the next posture. The Bikram method also stimulates the organs, glands and nerves, systematically moving fresh oxygenated blood to 100 percent of the body. The result is a restoration of health of all systems of the body, including the brain.”
Only 90 minute classes are offered, so I drank ridiculous amounts of water during the day in order to make sure I was hydrated and would be able to endure the entire feat. Upon arriving at the studio after work, I stripped down to my hot yoga gear (shorts and a Lululemon Cool Racerback because I adore them and they’re super comfy). After taking a couple of gasps of normal air, I entered the
sauna studio and found out for myself how “challenging” those 26 postures really are.
The verdict? To be honest, I’m still sort of on the fence! I adore Moksha yoga, so the entire time I couldn’t help but compare the two. There was a ton of overlap pose-wise, but Bikram didn’t have the flow sequences that Moksha has. Instead, there are the 26 poses (which yes, are rather challenging!) and the instructor talks the class through 2 rounds of each pose. Despite having eaten a snack beforehand and drinking a ton of water, I started to get a bit headachey towards the end. I figure it might have been from poses like rabbit (lots of pressure on the head) and camel (or other back-bends… my neck doesn’t seem to like those poses!)
Again, I’ll do a separate, more detailed post about Bikram soon, but one thing I did really like was that Bikram KW has a smoothie bar. At the end of class when everyone is lying in savasana, the instructor asks how many people would like one. When you’re all done with your savasana, the smoothies are waiting at the smoothie bar (below) for anyone who ordered. Unique, don’t you think?
4. Pasta Slim spinach “noodles”. Remember how last week I tried shirataki noodles and decided that they were a pretty amazing substitute for ramen noodles? Well when I was shopping for them, I couldn’t make up my mind between the shirataki noodles and these beasts:
Like shirataki noodles, Pasta Slim by Wild Wood Organics is another super low calorie, low cholesterol, low carb, low everything noodle.
I decided to wait until this week to try the Pasta Slim noodles just in case the shirataki ones turned out to be revolting and unpalatable. That was clearly not the case! Rather than an Asian cuisine – and yes I consider my kitchen concoctions to be worthy of the label ‘cuisine’ – I opted for some Italian-inspired fare.
After giving the noodles a very thorough rinsing to remove the stinky salty water mixture that they come in, I put them in a bowl of hot water to warm them up. (As the package above says, you don’t need to cook them.)
Meanwhile, I got on with some slicing and dicing. In the mix:
- 1/2 can of salmon
- Yellow and green zucchini
- Red onion
- Fresh Italian parsley and basil
- Balsamic vinegar
- Sea salt and pepper
- Italian seasoning – about 1 tsp, dried
After warming the whole mixture throughout in a pan on the stove, I strained the noodles and tossed them in a little bit of olive oil, plated them, and tossed the whole tomato-y mix on top. Result:
While they don’t really have the wheaty taste of regular pasta (nor should they, because they don’t contain wheat!) they are still a good sturdy noodle stand in, especially if you’ve got a carb craving. I really liked that they didn’t seem to have that heavy-in-your-stomach feeling like regular pasta sometimes does. Like the shirataki noodles, they take on the taste of the dish really well and are super quick to prepare. I’m rather intrigued by these!
Alrighty friends, let’s get on with Wednesday, shall we? Before you do, check out my questions for today:
- Have you ever tried Bikram? What did you think of it in comparison to other types of yoga?
- What’s your favourite yogurt brand? I’m longing for the day that Chobani makes its way up to Canada, but for now, it’s Liberte or Stonyfield for me!