What I Ate Wednesday #10 – Out on the Town

Saturday was a rainy, gross, stay inside kinda day. But we just don’t like to do that. It’s the weekend.. gotta have fun!

I started my Saturday with a workout, a hair chop, and a dress purchase. But this wasn’t just any dress purchase. My friend, bridesmaid, and college roommate announced last week that she is getting married. Next month.

Say whaaaaaaattttt?!

I know! And I’m also a bridesmaid! With all of 4 weeks to prep, she asked for the bridesmaids to wear black or silver and she didn’t care what it looked like. And I’m pleased to say that I was successful in a short amount of time! (Thank you very much White House Black Market!)

Barr & Table White House Black Market

I wish I could say my night out on the town involved dressing up in my new fun dress, but sadly, it did not. It did, however, involve some delicious eats and drinks!

Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAW Peas and Crayons Peanut Butter Fingers PBFingers Banana Bread Protein Pancakes Cherries Bang Bang Mongolian Grill Babas Mediterranean Grill Hummus Quinoa Shrimp Pita Greek Salad Tripel Karmelit Hennepin Red Wine

Breakfast
I’m still way too obsessed with the banana bread protein pancakes from Julie at Peanut Butter Fingers. They’re just my favorite pancakes and I can’t stop wanting them! I also had my Tone It Up Bombshell Spell and since it was the weekend, I topped it off with my favorite coffee. Get this. Chocolate coconut coffee. Seriously, what could be better?!

Snack
Also on my obsession list, cherries. And they were on sale last week! We stocked up.

Lunch – Outing #1
A little while back, I got a LivingSocial deal to Bang Bang Mongolian Grill. If you enjoy cooking and controlling your ingredients, this place is for you! You grab a bowl, load it up with protein, vegetables, sauces, and spices, then give it to the cook and choose your starch. They cook everything on a flat top and hand you a steaming hot bowl of deliciousness! It’s like cooking at home without having to actually cook! And without the mess.

I loaded up on salmon, shrimp, tons of veggies, zesty orange garlic sauce and went for the brown rice. It was delicious and super easy. Definitely going back soon!

Snack
Not pictured, but super delicious. Vanilla greek yogurt with Great Grains Cranberry Almond Crunch. If you’re a cereal or granola lover, this one is for you! But beware, it’s addicting! (Don’t say I didn’t warn you.)

Dinner – Outing #2
Baba’s Mediterranean Kitchen. Oh yes.

If you’re in the Baltimore area, make your way over. We started with a sampler.. hummus, baba ghanoush, spanikopita, and falafel. Nathan said it’s the best falafel he’s had since Israel. It was all amazing though. For my dinner, I got the shrimp ouzo over quinoa with a side greek salad, hummus, and pita. My only complaint is that they don’t make their own bread.. and we’re bread people. Beyond that, I would go back in a heart beat! (And the prices are awesome!)

After Dinner
Since we were with some friends, we headed over to The Wine Market; an adorable little wine shop (duh!) and bistro. The girls got some wonderful assortments of red wines (not pictured) and the boys shared 2 beers. A Tripel Karmeliet to start; an amazingly delicious Belgian tripel that pretty much can’t be topped. But why not try? They followed it up with an Ommegang Hennepin; this one is a Belgian-style Farmhouse Saison. Another winner. And while I was definitely enjoying my wine, I’m clearly much more intrigued by beer. Can you tell? 😉

Fitness
After reviewing that dinner, I’m really quite pleased that I got up for my workout Saturday morning! I hit up my Tone It Up girls for a couple of my toning faves – the Sandcastle workout and the Itty Bitty Bikini workout. Don’t let these names fool you.. it burns! Especially that total ab tone up at the end of Itty Bitty Bikini!

Tone It Up TIU Itty Bitty Bikini Workout Abs Toning Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAWTone It Up TIU Itty Bitty Bikini Workout Abs Toning Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

Tone It Up TIU Itty Bitty Bikini Workout Abs Toning Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

I paired that up with a favorite HIIT elliptical workout from SELF Magazine I was ready to hit the town!

Speak Up!

What’s your favorite type of cuisine? We love Mediterranean! Saturday was our first time trying Baba’s and we’ll definitely be back.

What I Ate Wednesday #9 – Wedding Crashers

Remember when I said I found the best part of wedding planning? Well I think in the last 2 weeks I’ve found 2 more things that rival for the best part—dress shopping and band shopping!

First and foremost, I got a dress! And I love it and I want to wear it all the time and I can’t wait to put it on again! Wanna see pictures?! You got it! On May 12, 2013  😉

After it took 5 months to find the right venue, I was worried that dress shopping was going to be a complete nightmare, but it was so much fun and it only took me 2 trips to say YES to the dress! (I had to.. really, I did.)

Secondly, band shopping has been a bit frustrating to start off. We’ve just been listening to tons of cliche demos all the while, trying not to laugh. Once we picked out a few bands we liked, we were told to go check them out. Sooooo we crashed a wedding! Yes, we were invited by the band management company, but not by the bride and groom. We got dressed up, turned it into a full on date night and had a great time!

Barr & Table Wedding Crashers Kaleidoscope Band

Now onto the eats..

Breakfast
Lately, I’ve been in love with protein pancakes. I was on quite a roll for awhile with the Tone It Up pineapple protein pancakes, but decided to switch it up. Julie from Peanut Butter Fingers has a recipe for banana bread protein pancakes that I tried awhile back and absolutely fell in love with! So now, I’m on a banana bread protein pancake kick that I just can’t seem to shake. And I’m totally ok with it! Top it off with my favorite Tone It Up bombshell spell and I’m in heaven!

Barr & Table What I Ate Wednesday WIAW Peanut Butter Fingers PBFingers Banana Bread Protein Pancakes Peanut Butter PB Tone It Up TIU Bombshell Spell

Lunch
A delicious spicy Asian chicken and vegetable dish with whole wheat couscous. So delicious, that I didn’t get a picture!

Snack
Strawberry yogurt bites. A little something sweet that I whipped up in no time!

Barr & Table Strawberry Yogurt Bites Chobani Dannon Oikos Vanilla Greek Yogurt Banana Almonds Cinnamon

Dinner
Since we had to get all dressed up anyway, we figured we might as well head to a new restaurant for an impromptu date night!

Seasons 52 was the restaurant of choice. This restaurant uses seasonally inspired ingredients with a menu that is updated weekly. (Get it? Seasonally updated.. 52 weeks in a year..)

Nathan chose it because he loves me.. aka everything on the menu is 475 calories or less. And it doesn’t hurt that the menu sounded awesome!

Barr & Table Seasons 52 Restaurant Salmon Salad Jicama Watermelon Refresher Flatbread Pizza Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse Mocha Macchiato

I ordered the organic arugula salad with watermelon, grilled golden beets, jicama, toasted pistachios, and a side of lemongrass salmon. The salad was amazingly delicious and the salmon tasted like it was totally indulgent, but it wasn’t! On the side, I enjoyed a wonderful watermelon refresher. I’m a sucker for any kind of watermelon cocktail!

Nathan got the ripe plum tomato flatbread with fresh basil, roasted garlic, and parmesan cheese, and a mixed green salad on the side. The flatbread was everything a flatbread should be. Super thin, crispy crust, not a ton of cheese, and nice and light.

And because our meals were so light and wonderful, we topped it off with their mini indulgences. I had the chocolate peanut butter mousse and Nathan ordered the mocha macchiato. Both fantastic, but I think I won the dessert round! He kept trying to sneak little bites!

My one complaint about Seasons 52 is that the closest one is an hour away. That said, we might have to visit friends in the area more so we can go back 🙂

Fitness

Jess Blonde Ponytail GNC Lean Legs Circuit Tabata Workout Barr & Table

I’m not gonna lie, I totally killed it at the gym the other night. But my favorite part of my workout was the GNC lean leg circuit from Jess at Blonde Ponytail. If you watch the video, she tells you to do 3 rounds of this circuit, but if you’re up for the challenge, you can do it tabata style, or 8 times through.

As I got through the first 3 sets, I thought “alright, this isn’t so bad.. let’s take it to 5!” Got to 5 sets and thought “I’m doing it.. I’m going for all 8 sets!” I finished all 8 sets in 20 minutes and felt awesome! And 2 days later, I’m remembering each and every one of those moves every time I stand up. Hurts so good!

Speak Up!

Have you tried a new restaurant recently? What was the best part of your meal?

Zucchini Bread Protein Pancakes

Since starting Tone It Up last August, I’ve become more and more intrigued with finding healthy alternatives for some of my most favorite dishes, especially sweets! You can imagine my excitement when I came across the Tone It Up protein pancakes!

As other varieties of protein pancakes have emerged, I’ve gone wild trying all of the different ingredient combos I could find.

My favorite? Banana bread protein pancakes from Julie at Peanut Butter Fingers. How could they possibly be bad?!

My latest inspiration came from a tweet last Friday.

Zucchini Bread Oats Twitter Tweet

I’m sorry,what is this?! Zucchini bread oats, you say? Yes, please and thank you!

If you can do it with oats, there’s not reason you can’t make a protein pancake out of it. So I did.

Zucchini Bread Protein Pancakes

Yields 4 pancakes (1 serving)

Barr & Table Zucchini Bread Protein Pancakes

Ingredients
1/2 – 3/4 cup zucchini, finely shredded
1/2 cup oats
1 egg white
1/4 cup fat free cottage cheese; greek yogurt works well too, but the cottage cheese makes them fluffier
1 scoop vanilla protein powder; I use About Time Whey
1 tbsp psyllium husk; optional, but helps to thicken the batter
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions
Heat a skillet over medium heat. Finely shred your zucchini and make sure to squeeze out all excess moisture. There’s a lot in there and you don’t want it in your pancakes!

Add all ingredients, except zucchini, into a food processor and process until the mixture is smooth. Once smooth, add the zucchini and pulse until well combined, but not completely smooth.

Barr & Table Zucchini Bread Protein Pancakes Batter

Spoon mixture out onto skillet into 4 equal-size pancakes. It’s time to flip when they start to bubble around the edge. Keep an eye after flipping as the second side takes about half the amount of time.

My favorite toppings for these pancakes are 1/2 sliced banana, a little drizzle of maple syrup, a sprinkling of unsweetened shredded coconut, and a little extra cinnamon. Kristin topped her oats with chopped walnuts too; a staple in many zucchini bread loafs!

Barr & Table Zucchini Bread Protein Pancakes

Speak Up!

What is your favorite type of dessert bread? Have you used this as an inspiration for pancakes?