My mantra for the week…

 

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Back to School

Tomorrow marks the start of my second year of grad school. Wow. Where did the last year go?

While I am sad summer is over, I am ready to get back into a real routine and have some structure to my life. I did spend most of the summer working on my research, but I still managed to have some fun. I had some great trips (El Salvador, Pittsburgh, Virginia, Delaware), awesome visitors (family and friends), and made some great memories with my grad school friends. I also got to spend some time at home with my family.

My free time is about to dramatically decrease, but I’m ready to hit the ground running this semester. My backpack is (almost) packed, my planner is updated, and my clothes are ready for the morning. Bring on the school year!

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Happy RD Birthday!

Today is my 1 year Registered Dietitian (RD) birthday.

What is an RD? In a nutshell, an RD is a food and nutrition expert who has completed the minimum academic and professional requirements to sit for the RD exam. These requirements include an undergraduate degree that meets certain academic criteria and completion of 1200 hours as part of a dietetic internship.

For me, I completed my undergraduate coursework at Kansas State University and my dietetic internship at Penn State. Today, I’m using my RD credential as a graduate student where I am exploring different facets of weight management and general health and wellness.

I really can’t believe it has been 1 year since I took the much anticipated RD exam. It honestly feels like just yesterday I was starting the first day of my internship! Time really does fly when you love what you do.

Are you interested in becoming an RD? Be sure to check out The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Have a nutrition question or need some nutrition advice? Find an RD near you.

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Rhubarb Streusel Muffins

Last week I found rhubarb in my CSA box and I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it. I was trying to avoid the cliché Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie and went searching for the perfect recipe.

I came across a fantastic looking muffin recipe, compliments of Smitten Kitchen, and it definitely did not disappoint. I made a few changes and the end result was the perfect combination of tart rhubarb complimented by the sweet streusel topping. Yum.

  

Choose firm, crisp, medium-size rhubarb stalks and make sure to remove the leave before use (they’re poisonous). Rhubarb is a good source of vitamin C and also supplies fiber, calcium, and magnesium.

Whole Wheat Rhubarb Streusel Muffins

Yield: 12 muffins

Streusel

  • ¼ cup (31 grams) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup (28 grams) whole wheat flour
  • 1 Tbsp (13 grams) granulated sugar
  • 3 Tbsp (38 grams) brown sugar
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 Tbsp butter, melted

Muffins

  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup (50 grams) brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp (38 grams) granulated sugar
  • 5 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 6 oz non-fat plain Greek yogurt (I used Chobani)
  • 1 cup (120 grams) whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup (63 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 cup diced rhubarb
  1.  Preheat oven to 375°. Grease muffin tin (or use cupcake liners).
  2. Make streusel: In a small dish, stir together flours, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Stir in butter until crumbly. Set aside.
  3. Make muffins: Whisk egg with both sugars in a large bowl. Whisk in butter and yogurt. In a separate bowl, combine the dry ingredients. Add to yogurt mixture and mix until just combined (batter will be lumpy). Fold in rhubarb and about 1/3 of the streusel mixture.
  4. Divide batter among muffin tins and sprinkle with remaining streusel. Using a spoon, gently press the crumbs into the batter so that they stick.
  5. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Rest muffins on cooling rack for a few minutes before removing from tin to cool completely. Enjoy!

 Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

What is your favorite way to use rhubarb?

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Refrigerator Pickles

As I was perusing the Farmer’s Market last week, I came across some Kirby cucumbers and pickles instantly came to mind. Being the impulse shopper that I am, I bought a quart of cucumbers and figured I’d worry about making pickles later (never mind that I don’t even have a canner). After searching Google, consulting my mom, and scouring several cookbooks, I finally found a recipe for pickles that didn’t require a canner and could simply be made in the refrigerator. I just cracked open my first jar for a taste and I am pretty impressed with myself!

If pickles aren’t your thing, don’t shy away from cucumbers! These beauties provide a healthy dose of potassium, vitamin K, magnesium, and fiber and are great served in salads or with dip.

Refrigerator Pickles

Yield: 2 pints

  •  1 quart Kirby cucumbers (I weighed mine and it was approximately 1½ pounds)
  • ¾ cup vinegar
  • ¾ cup water (I used filtered)
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons dill seed
  • ¼ teaspoon mustard seed
  • ¼ teaspoon dill (add more if you prefer)
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled
  • ½ cup onion, chopped
  1. Wash and dry cucumbers. Chop ends off and slice into spears.
  2. Combine vinegar, water and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat.
  3. While brine is coming to a boil, equally divide the dill seed, mustard seed, dill, garlic, and onion between two pint jars.
  4. Without crushing the cucumber spears, pack as tightly as possibly into the jars.
  5. Divide the brine between the jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace (the space from the top of the jar to the food or liquid in the jar).
  6. Place lids tightly on jars and allow them to cool. Once cool, refrigerate and let cure for a least one day. Store in the refrigerator for up to one month.

Note: These pickles are not shelf stable. Keep them in the fridge!

 Adapted from Food in Jars

Do you have a refrigerator pickle recipe? 

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New Beginnings

Welcome to my [revamped] blog! Updating the blog to better represent me has been on my summer to-do list and now I can finally cross it off. ComplEATly Catherine is just that – everything entirely me.

Check out the About section to learn more about me (and the blog) and look forward to some exciting posts soon!

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#49. Organize my favorite recipes; #52. Plan meals and follow for 14 days.

I have a (bad?) habit of reading lots of magazines and tearing out pretty much every recipe that I see. The problem? I have a stockpile of recipes that I’ll never attempt. I finally had some free time during a weekend to sort through my stockpile and do a little organizing, therefore fulfilling #49 from my list of things to do.

While organizing, I found some recipes I could legitimately try and used them to plan my meals for the next two weeks. I stuck to my plan fairly well…the only time I deviated was when I had a friend in town and we decided to go to dinner together. I left my weekend meals open for leftovers and variable plans, but planned the rest of the time out. Here’s how the last two weeks played out:

  • Sunday/Monday: Chicken Cacciatore (made in my awesome purple crock pot!)
  • Tuesday: Quinoa Salad with Tilapia
  • Wednesday: Pork Carnitas
  • Thursday: Chef Salad
  • Friday: Jimmy John’s
  • Saturday/Sunday: leftovers/food experiments with Phil 🙂
  • Monday: Quinoa Medley
  • Tuesday: dinner with Ana!
  • Wednesday: Ginger-Soy-Lime Marinated Chicken
  • Thursday: Mac & Cheese with Tuna
  • Friday: Waldorf Salad Wrap
  • Saturday: leftovers
My breakfasts consisted of  oatmeal, bran flakes and fruit while lunches were leftovers and sandwiches. Planning my meals made me more efficient in grocery shopping. It was also nice to not have to think about what I wanted to cook when I got home since I already had it planned out. I need to keep the meal planning up!

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