What I Ate Wednesday #131: White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars {Recipe ReDux}

Thank you all for your wonderful comments on Monday’s post. As I said, I’m working on figuring out my balance with jobs and life and blogging. I had to post today to share my new protein bar recipe. It’s just too good to keep to myself. So why not jump back on the What I Ate Wednesday bandwagon?

Peas & Crayons What I Ate Wednesday WIAW

[Pre-Workout]
It was 2 for Tuesday yesterday so rather than my usual energy bites, I whipped up a quick protein pancake with 1 scoop protein powder, 1/4 cup egg whites, and 1/4 cup cashew milk and spread a little almond butter on top. While it held me over pretty well for barre, I decided to pop 1/2 banana before I went over to the gym for some cardio.

[Breakfast]
Protein Oatmeal Egg White Oats Peanut Almond Butter Cinnamon Banana
I KNOW I said you don’t need to see another bowl of oatmeal. But this might have just been the best bowl of oatmeal ever. Or maybe I was just so hungry. Yep. Let’s go with the latter.

[Lunch]
Kale Carrots Beets Avocado Sugar Snap Peas Turkey Ketchup
I got the hugest bunches of kale and bag of carrots from the farmers’ market on Saturday. I sauteed a bunch of them up with some sugar snaps, turkey meatballs, and buffalo sauce, topped with avocado, quick-pickled beets, and ketchup. Legit. And so filling.

[Afternoon Snack]
No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars -- Barr & Table
HOLY YUM! I’ve been trying to figure out a good recipe to replace my favorite Quest bars and this month’s Recipe ReDux helped to inspire my bars.

Go through your pantry, cupboards, freezer, or fridge; what ‘treasures’ have you found? Pick an ingredient/spice/condiment that’s been hanging out for a while and give it the attention it needs. Share a healthy recipe made using your new-found pantry prize.

We’re pretty much the worst at ever finishing a jar of preserves so why not throw it into a bar? These are just the right amount of sweet and the best part? No baking! That said, if you do decide to broil or bake these babies, they are pretty reminiscent of a Quest bar. Success!

No-Bake White Chocolate Raspberry Protein Bars

Makes 6 bars

Ingredients
– 1/4 cup nut butter [I used Peanut Butter Co. The Bee’s Knees]
– 4 scoops vanilla protein powder [I used Optimum Nutrition]
– 1/4 cup coconut flour
– 4-6 tbsp water
– 2 tbsp white chocolate chips
– 1-2 tbsp raspberry preserves

Directions
In a medium bowl, melt the nut butter. Mix in the protein powder, coconut flour, and water. The amount of water used will depend on your other ingredients so add slowly. Mix these ingredients until everything comes together and is slightly sticky. Add in the white chocolate chips and 1 tbsp raspberry preserves.

Line a loaf pan with saran wrap and press the mixture into the pan. Top the mix with a little more raspberry preserves and place in the freezer for about an hour. Remove from the freezer and cut into 6 equal bars. Wrap each bar separately in saran wrap and store in the freezer.

Nutritional Information
Per 1 bar
208 Calories / 9g Fat / 15g Carbs / 3g Fiber / 10g Sugar / 20g Protein

[Dinner]
Baked Buffalo Falafel Potatoes Ranch Tzatziki Half Baked Harvest
We can pretend that my dinner looked half as good as the real deal. In reality, I decided to not toss the balls in buffalo, skip the naan, and used cheddar instead of blue cheese. I think it would have turned out better if the falafel had been tossed in buffalo.. or if they were fried. Oh well. You win some, you lose some.

[Evening Snack]
The apple and nut butter still live strong.

Sprint 2 the Table

Food for Thought

What treasure do you have in your pantry or fridge?

What I Ate Wednesday #59: Ten Years Gone

I mentioned on Friday that Nathan and I were going out to Birroteca for dinner to celebrate 10 years together. We had heard so many fantastic things about this restaurant and decided this was the perfect time to cross it off of our bucket list [more on that later!] and I’m so glad we did. Every dish was absolutely wonderful! I think we might be experts on the menu now because we went all out!

Drinks

We got to the restaurant a little early so we took advantage of their happy hour drink specials. Wine for me, beer for him. The cocktail list looked awesome but we were waiting until we were seated for that.

His

Andrea Gail Ginger Beer Bitters Spiced Rum

Andrea Gail – Blackwell Spiced Rum, Ginger Beer, Boston Bittahs’

Hers

Grapefruit St Germain

St. Germain, Sparkling Wine, Grapefruit

Birroteca Baltimore Maryland MD

Cheers!

Appetizers

We couldn’t decide on one appetizer to split, so we had to get our own. They all sounded so good!

His

Italian Wedding Soup

Italian Wedding Soup

I know, it doesn’t sound so exciting, but those tiny meatballs were packed with flavor! The broth had a little bit of a kick, the tomatoes were so fresh, and the barley had the perfect bite. I’d never had Italian wedding soup before, but this would have me coming back again!

Hers

Kale Salad Radish Pepitas Apple Beets

Chopped Tuscan Kale, Heirloom Beets, Pumpkin Seeds, Radishes, Gala Apples, Apple Vinaigrette

Again, it may not sound like the most exciting appetizer, but the flavors blended so well. And that vinaigrette was something special. I’m definitely going to be trying to recreate it at home!

Veggies

No more his and hers. From this point on, we shared everything!

Fried Brussels Sprouts Black Garlic Aioli

Crispy Brussels Sprouts with Black Garlic Aioli

Whenever I heard anything about Birroteca, the crispy brussels were always mentioned. And how could I say no to brussels sprouts?! The aioli was so flavorful, you only needed a little on each bite and we were pleasantly surprised to find slices of salami throughout!

Eggplant Fries Red Pepper Caper Mayo

Eggplant Fries with Red Pepper-Caper Mayo

We hadn’t planned on getting the eggplant fries, but when we saw an order come out we knew we had to try them! Again, the aioli was packed with flavor and we were using it for everything! The eggplant was breaded and the crust stayed nice and crispy, even when we reheated them!

Entrees

Pasta

Pappardelle Wild Boar Bolognese

Homemade Pappardelle with Wild Boar Bolognese

If we’ve learned anything in the past few months, it’s that we must order homemade pasta whenever we see it on the menu. And with a wild boar bolognese? Like there was any doubt!

The dish was a bit saucier than I had expected from other meat sauces we’ve had in the past. The sauce was also thinner than I expected too, but we loved it nonetheless. The chunks of wild boar were tender and the homemade pasta was cooked perfectly.

Pizza

Duck Duck Goose Pizza

Duck Duck Goose – Duck Confit, Fig-Onion Jam, Balsamic, Fontina & Asiago, Duck Egg

Oooooh the pizza! The crust was soft but not too chewy. The fig-onion jam mixed with the balsamic gave the pizza a little barbeque flavor. The duck confit was meaty and rich, but didn’t overpower the rest of the flavors. The fontina and asiago mix was flavorful so the pizza didn’t need a lot of cheese. And what’s better than topping all of that with a nice, dippy egg?! It just made it feel extra special.

Dessert

Gluten Free Apple Pumpkin Cake Pistachio Ice Cream Seed Butter

Gluten-Free Apple and Pumpkin Cake, Pistachio Ice Cream, Toasted Pepitas, Pistachio Butter

I told Nathan that I was “comfortably full” before dessert came out knowing that would probably change! He said to me “it’s gluten-free so it’s good for you, right?” Luckily I knew he was joking. I took one bite, looked at him and said “yea. Tell me that’s healthy!”

It was so amazingly worth every single bite! The cake, topped with an apple ring, was so buttery and rich. The simple flavors were set off by the nuttiness of the pistachio ice cream and creamy pistachio butter.

Knowing that we were going all out, we planned ahead and got food boxed up as the next dishes were brought to the table. I’m sure people were laughing at our tower of boxes!

Birroteca Leftovers

HELLOOOOOOOO LEFTOVERS!

But I bet they wouldn’t be laughing when they realized we got to have an awesome lunch on Sunday 😉

Birroteca Duck Pizza Kale Salad Brussels Sprouts Eggplant Fries

Best. Lunch. Ever.

I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate 10 years with Nathan. We gushed over all of the food the whole night, even after we left the restaurant. It was so fun experiencing something new with him again and it was almost like taking another little trip back to Italy. Any reminder of the honeymoon is a good time in our book!

Food for Thought

If you had to choose one dish from our menu, which would you choose?

Do you ever go out to dinner with big plans of trying wayyy more than you know you can eat, knowing you’ll take home leftovers?

Marvelous Monday Photo Dump

It’s a chilly, tired, relatively wordless Marvelous Monday.

Friday Night

It was our anniversary dinner and we ate. We ate A LOT! More details to come soon 🙂

Oooooh happy anniversary to us!

Saturday

Saturday morning coffee, twitter, and blogs. It was lovely.

Coffee Twitter

My company did some painting at an elementary school on Friday. I now need to get my nails done.

My cousin had been wanting to cook me a birthday dinner and it finally happened.. 2 months later 😉 Well worth the wait!

Roast Chicken Asparagus Couscous Royal Farm Western Fries Artichoke

My fabulous belated birthday dinner from my cousin.. roast chicken, asparagus, couscous, western fries (Nathan insisted we bring them!), and an artichoke.. or 2.

I brought dessert!

Mexican Chocolate Biscotti Coconut Butter

Mexican Chocolate Biscotti = huge success!

Sunday

Farmers’ market Sunday. My favorite wrap and coffee in our little parking spot “nook.”

Sweet Fire Mushroom Wrap Eggs Rice Black Beans

Favorite breakfast from the farmers’ market.. Sweet fire chili portabello mushrooms, roasted red peppers, rice & peas, egg, feta, & salsa.

Burning off the last few days..

Unbelievable how off the machines are on calorie count!

..and then eating it up again 😉

Birroteca Duck Pizza Kale Salad Brussels Sprouts Eggplant Fries

Friday night leftovers = Sunday lunch. Duck pizza, fried brussels, eggplant fries, and kale salad.

I think it’s time to box up the dress, but I couldn’t pass up on putting it on at least once more.

Wedding Dress

I wish I could wear it all the time! Is that weird..?

Food for Thought

What fun stuff did you do over the weekend?