Paris Wife and Egg Muffins

Today I am sharing my review of The Paris Wife and my recipe for Broccoli Cheddar Egg Muffins. I am really excited to be a part of a blogger book club, thanks Julie for organizing this! During school, I rarely get the opportunity to read books for pleasure but since my workload (and motivation) are declining this semester, it has been a great way to end each night. I have been working on this egg muffins and this batch has been my favorite! They are now my go-to breakfast for ease and nutrition 🙂

The Review

The Paris Wife is a historical fiction novel by Paula McLain that follows the relationship of Hadley Richardson and Ernest Hemingway in the 1920s. In general, I love historical fiction. The genre allows suspense since the reader has foreknowledge of the end results, but not the specifics of how the characters will get to that destination. While I did not start the book with a significant knowledge of Hemingway, I was familiar with the generalities of his work, wives, and death. McLain also makes it possible for a reader to become enveloped in the story, and enjoy its suspense without any knowledge of Hemingway or Hadley.

The Paris Wife is mostly written from Hadley’s perspective, but also includes excerpts from Hemingway’s writing. I thought the first couple of excerpts disrupted the flow of the narrative, but toward the middle I enjoyed realizing the profound significance of these pieces in Hemingway’s life and thinking. While Hemingway was not the primary subject of the book, his experiences and emotions governed how Hadley experienced life. For this and other reasons, I didn’t feel a connection to Hadley. She relied on Hemingway for everything, and was always willing to give up on her dreams or desires for her husband and his professional goals. Throughout the book, I continuously rooted for her to break free from him emotionally and do things that interested or excited her. Conversely, I could understand how it would be hard to adjust to life in another country, and always be referred to as the “wife of” instead of having your own identification.

Overall, I really enjoyed the book. The story line was engaging, and it was interesting to see how Hemingway might have navigated the literary world before publishing any of his currently famous work. Additionally, throughout the book McClain intrigued me with hints and foreshadowing who Ernest’s next wife would be.

Broccoli Cheddar Egg Muffins

Adapted from: Kalyn’s Kitchen

Makes 12.

½ cup egg whites

5 eggs

1 ½ cup cooked broccoli (I defrosted frozen broccoli)

¾ cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Preheat the oven to 350, spray the muffin tins with vegetable oil spray. Divide the broccoli between the tins. Layer a sprinkle of cheese on top of the broccoli (I did not have enough shredded cheese so I used cheese cubes). Scramble the eggs and egg whites. Pour the egg mixture into the tins to about 3/4 full. Top with remaining cheese. Bake for 25 minutes.

Breakfast for the next couple days!

PB & J Smoothie

After posting mostly pictures the past few days, I decided to actually write a blog post today 😉

Honestly, Day of Dance pretty much killed my weekend. I was not able to go to my Saturday morning cycle class, and all the dancing left me super exhausted with a small mountain of work to get through. Not many fun eats or exciting work outs going on! But this week I am really motivated on the exercise front, because SPRING BREAK IS NEXT WEEK!! (shouting is really the most appropriate way to talk about a 5 day cruise with 14 great friends, clearly).

Here are my workout goals of the week: running 3 miles twice, cycle class twice, yoga once, the last week of the Hundred Push Up challenge (these are so hard now), and 2-4 dance rehearsals depending on whether I have Friday evening rehearsals

On the eating front: As I have mentioned, I am attempting to eat mostly low sugar foods to prep for all that beach time :). This week’s meals will consist of a lot of the usual: Greek yogurt, smoothies, eggs, frozen veggies, as well as

Swai

Salads

Egg Muffins (recipe in tomorrow’s post)

And of course, several spoonfuls of pb (topped with a sprinkle of cinnamon)

On the subject of peanut butter, I made a PB & J smoothie this morning that was delish! It is inspired in part by my dad, who can eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches at any time for days on end, and also by this milkshake.

PB & J Smoothie

Ingredients:

3/4 cup frozen strawberries

1 cup milk

1 1/2 Tbsp peanut butter

1 scoop protein powder

Blend it all up and enjoy lunch for breakfast!

Look out for my blogger book club review of The Paris Wife sometime this afternoon/tonight/whenever I want to procrastinate school work

Clearing out the fridge

Let the countdown begin!! In one week from now I will be landing in Florida, for my very first cruise 🙂

Spring Break cannot get here soon enough!

That being said, the week before spring is always jam-packed with midterms, papers, readings, etc. I know I will not have a lot of time to cook, so this weekend I prepared several foods to get me through the week while also clearing out the fridge/pantry/freezer.

Egg mfuffins-recipe to come on Wednesday

lentils

Four baked swai fillets and red onions

Chopped romaine

And if all else fails, I always have my trusty jar of peanut butter

Recipes this week will mostly be a hodge-podge of whatever frozen vegetables I can find to make some tasty combination. There will likely be a lot of eggs involved, because I need to get through a dozen this week. I will definitely be feasting on mashed cauliflower-one of my fav easy freezer recipes!

Happy Monday 🙂

Fish in Flames

I was afraid that I would have to write a boring dinner post for today, but luckily (kind of) my dinner proved to be really exciting and tasty.

I bought a package of Swai filets last week, and have been trying some new recipes and ways to cook them. Last night I used this great recipe, for an Asian-inspired meal. I wrapped the fish up in wax paper with green onions, ginger, frozen green beans, lemon juice, soy sauce and a drizzle of oil.

I put the wrapped fish into the oven. Then various things made me nervous, so I took it out to check on it after about 15 minutes. First of all, I wrapped it in wax paper instead of parchment paper. I don’t have parchment paper, and thought I could substitute wax paper without a problem. I was partly right. But instead of smelling like ginger-fish-deliciousness, the kitchen smelled like melting wax, which unnerved me a little bit. Also the recipe did not specify an oven temp so I kind of guessed and set it for 375, but I did not want the fish to be over or under cooked.

I had to rip through the paper in order to poke the fish and see if it was cooked and flaky. It was not. Since I had already ripped up the paper, there was no way to really rewrap the fish. I just put the whole thing back into the oven.

Then the wax paper caught fire.

All of the paper around my fish instantly transformed into flames. As I watched the fire spread from one section to literally a ring of fire around the fish, I weighed several options in my mind: was there enough liquid in the pan to let it burn itself out? should I take it out of the oven? but then where would I put it? The first thing I did was a pure gut reaction- I attempted to “blow out” the fire.

Yeah, that didn’t really work.

At all.

So instead of taking any action, I just stood dumbfounded for about ten seconds until the fire burnt it self out. The paper around the edges burnt away, but the fish seemed fine. Jenny helped me pick out some of the stray ash pieces with chopsticks. Then I closed the oven door to let it finish cooking. It turned out delicious-you couldn’t even taste the flames/ash!! 😉

Close-up of the damage:

Have you ever set something on fire in the kitchen?

Daily Eats

I have kind of run out of steam as far as the whole Thirsty Thursday smoothie thing goes. I will still post cool smoothie recipes as I come across them, but will not feel the pressure to have something interesting to share each week.

Today I decided to do kind of a day in the life type post by documenting everything I ate yesterday. I usually do not have the time or patience to photograph everything I eat during a normal day, but yesterday I took a little effort to give you insight into what I actually eat on a daily basis. This exercise proved really helpful for myself as well, because I have never kept a food diary or anything so it was interesting to really think about all the foods that I put into my body. Ok, enough words. Let’s get to the photos:

Breakfast: green bean and turkey egg muffins...x 3

Lunch: Tuna Cannellini salad over mixed greens

Snack 1: Greek yogurt mixed with peanut butter

topped with almonds

Snack 2: cherry tomatoes with hummus, egg muffins (number 4 of the day-did I mention they are my new favorite thing?)

Dinner: the last of the lentil soup with a little mountain of parmesan on top

Snack 3: Popcorn-I wish I could say something about how I only ate half the bag and saved some for later, but that would be a lie.

Post-workout snack: plain smoothie (almond milk, protein powder, ice, cinnamon)

Updates

Happy Hump Day (and Ash Wednesday)

Today’s post is going to be kind of random, but it includes several things I have been doing/thinking about. Although I don’t think that any of them warrants an individual post.

-Workout goals from last week: All in all I did pretty well with my workout goals from last week. I managed to sweat through two cycle classes, one 3 mile run, Simply Abs, Simply Arms, and three ridiculously hard days of push ups. I skimped on the second run and Simply Legs.

-Running felt a lot better than I thought it would. I actually might have enjoyed it? The weather makes the biggest difference in the world, but I also just enjoy the silence (I run without headphones) and chance to think about everything and nothing. Let’s be honest, usually I just have one stanza of a totally random song stuck in my head. For some reason, last week it was a Christmas song, “Happy Holidays” or something along those lines. I have no idea why.

-I started a pintrest account, and am still trying to figure it out. I hope it will be a great place to go for recipe and workout inspiration (as well as apartment decorating, work outfits, and of course, wedding planning ;))

-I am now growing a Kombucha SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria and Yeast)!! It takes all my will power not to check on it every time I go into the kitchen (it is growing in a cupboard). I will let you know how it is progressing later on this week, they are supposed to be usable in 10-14 days.

-I get on the plane to Florida in 12 days!!

So.

Excited.

🙂