Pad Thai Spaghetti Squash

Hey ya’ll! I have survived my first final. It was really easy to be honest, but my make-up exam was kind of hard, which was shocking. It was all short answer, which the test is usually multiple choice, a few short answer, and a case study. Instead it was all short answer and a case study. Hopefully I did well. If not, it isn’t the end of the world since I rocked the final. So I have something super special to share with ya’ll: my recipe for tofu spaghetti squash pad thai. Maybe one of the greatest things I have ever experienced (let me rephrase that: greatest healthy thing).

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Tofu Spaghetti Squash Pad Thai
1 red onion
1 spaghetti squash
1 c of carrots (already in thin stick form)
1 c bean sprouts
1/4-1/2 c of liquid egg whites
1 clove of garlic
crushed peanuts
a few pieces of cilantro

Peanut Sauce
2 tbsp white rice vinegar
2 tbsp soy sauce
1-2 tbsp brown sugar
1 lime
1 clove of garlic
2 tbsp of PB2 prepared with 3-4 tbsp of water

photo(1)1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and slice your spaghetti squash into half. Carve out the middle of the squash that contains all of the seeds and discard into the trash.

2. Place squash on a baking sheet or in a pyrex dish with the skin facing the dish and cook for 40-60 minutes until soft.

3. Meanwhile drain tofu of all water and slice into extremely small pieces (or if you want larger chunks don’t cut down into fine cubes).

photo(13)4. Spray pan with non-stick cooking spray and toss in tofu (you can use 1 tbsp oil if you want it more crisp/fried like). Cook until light brown on sides.

5. Remove tofu from pan and toss in chopped red onion (you don’t have to add all of the red onion, I just added as much as I wanted there to be in the dish).

6. Cook for a minute or two, then add in chopped garlic (stir continuously, so it does not burn).

7. After a minute has gone by, add in the carrots and bean sprouts. You may need to spray the pan again with the non-cook PAM or add in some water, so the pan doesn’t burn.

photo8. Toss in the tofu to re-heat and mix with all the vegetables.

9. Move mixture to the side of the pan and add in the liquid egg whites. Wait until the liquid starts to solidify before moving around to turn into scrambled eggs.

10. Then mix all the ingredients together and then remove pan from flame to place on a burner for the meantime.

11. In a small saucepan or pot, add in the vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, PB2, juice of one lime, and a clove of garlic.

12. Heat on medium and stir until the brown sugar and PB2 completely dissolves.

13. Place vegetable/tofu mixture back on a flame to heat back up then pour the cooked sauce into the mixture. Stir until everything is thoroughly coated.

14. By this time the spaghetti squash should be done cooking, so remove from oven and let cool. Once the squash is cool you can use a fork to pull the “noodles” from the squash. Once you have the amount you want, throw the “noodles” into the vegetable mixture and stir well.

photo(2)15. Pour however much you want into a bowl and top with a handful of crushed peanuts and around 6-7 cilantro leaves. Then enjoy!

Seriously this is one of the best meals I’ve made for myself. I have a love for all types of Asian food, so when I realized I could utilize spaghetti squash as noodles in pad thai my world completely changed. The richness of the peanut sauce meshes well with the freshness of the cooked vegetables. You can’t even tell that the noodles are spaghetti squash. I think it is the sauce that really ties it all together. I even had so much that I have had leftovers for two days. Also I didn’t use all my noodles, so I made spaghetti squash mac n cheese, which I will obviously have to share with ya’ll another day.

photo(3)I think another thing that I like so much about this dish is all the wonderful colors in it. The cilantro brings a nice pop of green to the dish while it has a lot of warm colors in it such as the red from the onion, the orange from the carrots, and the yellow from the squash. Wow I sound like an art freak to be honest. What can I say I have transitioned from oils and pastels to food. Okay, no I am still doing art because I love it, but now I just have another medium to work with: fresh food. This dish is definitely a hit. Even the non-vegetable eaters would probably love this. The true test is to use it on a guy (not saying that all guys don’t eat vegetables, just most)!

I hope everyone enjoys the rest of their Thursday evening. Mine will be spent curled up in bed reading a book. I just finished Night Circus and it was fantastic!

Have you ever had spaghetti squash?
What have you done with it?

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French Bakeries and Glass Art

Hey ya’ll! I hope you are all having a fantastic Friday. To be honest, I’m extremely exhausted. My Thursday night was filled with cupcakes, friends, and fun times. I didn’t go to sleep till really late and then I woke up super early. That leads to one exhausted girl. Continuing on my trend of Seattle, today I’m writing about our first full day in Seattle.

DSCN0028We woke up around 11 am the first day, and were ready for a fun adventure in the city. We decided to head down to Pike Place Market. It is a popular tourist destination, which was evident the day we went because it was crowded with tons of people. Not to mention the original Starbucks was across the street and there was a long line out of it every day.

DSCN0034This was what filled the long hall of the Pike Place Market. Sweat treats, fresh fruit, and locally made treasures. We ended up stopping at a dehydrated fruit stand, and bought some apples with cinnamon sprinkled on them. They were delicious. We then wondered for a while eye balling each shop until we decided to get some apples to snack on later in the room (honeycrisp, my favorite).

DSCN0046My brother and I were getting hungry, so we decided to go into this little French bakery on the corner of the street. We had yelped it before the trip, and we know it had gotten 4 and a half stars so you know it is going to be good. There was even a long line, so that also had to mean that it was legit. We were excited especially my brother because he loves French bakeries more than anything in life (besides dying his hair).

DSCN0043This was my box of goodies. I got French macarons, which are definitely one of my favorite bakery treats. I got a lemon and pistachio macaron for myself, and the third one is mocha for my dad. I also got a cute pink eclair. Pink is my favorite color and it looked so adorable in the pastry case that I had to have it. Everything was delicious. The macarons were so rich with flavor while the eclair was creamy and rich. Win. My brother got tons of tarts and croissants. My favorite thing of his was a croissant filled with raspberry jam. It was golden and flaky with a sweet tart flavor from the raspberry jam. It was perfect.

DSCN0051After we had our sweet treats, we ended up walking around a while until we formulated a good plan. We got on the monorail (it only has two stops), and went on to an area that had the space needle and tons of museums. This probably is the favorite part of my trip. We went to the Chihuly Garden and Glass museum. It was the most beautiful museum I have ever set foot in.

DSCN0067Chihuly is probably the greatest glass artist I have ever seen, which is saying a lot because I saw beautiful glass work in Venice when I was there years ago. One of his classic pieces, which can be seen many places around the United States, are his boats. They are either filled with these glass balls or crazy glass structures. A story we learned at the museum is that Chihuly would create a glass ball and throw it in a random pond or lake. The local kids would play with the balls, but would always return them to their original place. I thought that was really neat.

DSCN0058Chihuly is probably most well known for his ceiling masterpiece at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas. Of course there was a similar piece in the museum. It was in a smaller room, which was really cool because the different colors reflected all over the walls. It gave the room a magical feel.

DSCN0061This was probably my favorite room in the entire museum. It was pitch black in the room except for the installation. It was lit up and it glowed throughout the room. Each view of the long piece gave you a different spectacular view.

DSCN0105After walking for hours and going to a couple of other museums and cool tourist spots, we headed back to the hotel to make dinner plans. We decided to go to Seastar Restaurant and Raw Bar. It was amazing. For an appetizer we ordered mussels that had thai flavors and were in a thai coconut broth. These were some of the best mussels I have ever had. The various Thai flavors brought into the dish delivered a whole new flavor to the palate.

DSCN0109Our second appetizer was a crab cake. You can’t go to a seafood restaurant and not get a crab cake. Once again the restaurant brought in sweet Thai flavors that created  whole new crab cake experience. They were fried lightly, which provided the crisp yet sweet flavor of crab. It was delicious.

DSCN0110This beauty was my main course. I think I definitely picked the best dish of the three of us. It was Mahi Mahi on top of jasmine rice. It was a sweet Thai sauce that contained nuts, snap peas, and cucumber. This dish was perfect. There was not a single flaw. The fish was cooked perfectly, the flavors were on spot, and the dish was beautifully presented. All in all it was an amazing dinner.

Hope everyone has a good Friday night. I’ll be staying in tonight because I am too dead to do anything.

What I Ate Wednesday: Trailer Edition

Hey ya’ll! It is that time of the week again for another What I Ate Wednesday. I swear time is flying by this October, not that I’m complaining because I have a lot of exciting things going on. Tonight I’m going to another concert, and I’m sooo pumped. I’ll talk about that tomorrow, and now I’ll just focus on Jenn’s epic weekly holiday of WIAW! This week I am doing trailer edition, especially because it was Austin City Limits and food trailers are a huge thing in the lovely city of Austin.

Introducing Capital City Bakery. Probably the greatest new discovery of my foodie adventures in Austin. Everything is vegan, not that it really matters to me, but everything at this trailer is freaking delicious. Located on MLK dr, which is quite convenient since I go to UT volleyball games every week. What a coincidence? Guess I’ll just have to spoil myself with a cupcake or brownie for the games. I’m not complaining.

Every Saturday is cinnamon roll Saturday. I thought since it was my birthday weekend, why not try it out? My mom ended up picking up some sweet treats since she was already over there for some tennis thing. Anyways, since it is the month of October, Capital City Bakery is doing pumpkin cinnamon rolls. If you live in Austin GO GET THESE immediately. They are so amazing, especially after you microwave for 35 seconds. The icing melts down the cinnamon roll and the inside is mushy goodness. She also ended up getting a brownie. Best brownie I have ever had in my life. So good that my mother is making me go get one today before the game tonight. I will definitely be frequenting this trailer often.

On Saturday, my best friend and I went to go explore some trailers in South Austin on South Congress. Little did we know that it was going to downpour on us. Oh well. We still ended up getting some good food. Our first stop was Crepes Mille. Another amazing find. This place is delicious. They have sweet crepes and savory crepes.

This picture pretty much is self explanatory. AMAZE-BALLS. I ordered a savory crepe. The tofu curry. Yes for having vegetarian options. I was really tempted to eat one of the meat ones though because they looked so good. I restrained myself though, and I’m glad because the spices were perfect in this dish. Also the tofu was chopped finely, so it was easy to eat inside the crepe. It also came with tons of carrots, which obviously I’m a big fan of. Even if you aren’t a vegetarian, I recommend ordering this if you ever stop by the trailer.

My best friend ordered a sausage and brie crepe. Oh god it looked so good. The brie was melted good inside the crepe, the sausage was chopped finely, and it has a sweet spicy sauce with it. She said it was really delicious. I was sort of jealous, but thankfully mine was just as good otherwise I would have been sad. You can’t go wrong with Crepes Mille. Next time I plan on getting a dessert crepe.

Oh the story of Coat and Thai. One minute we are ordering our food, and sitting down on the benches to wait for our number to be called. The next second a torrential downpour is occuring, and my perfect outfit (white tank top, black maxi skirt, and rainbow urban outfitters scarf) has become soaking wet. Success. We just sat there through the storm. Dedication to eat some good food.

We ordered the pineapple fried rice with tofu. Thanks to my bestie for being so understanding about my vegetarian needs because I know tofu isn’t her first choice when adding protein to a meal. It was so delicious. Definitely worth sitting through the rain for. I am a sucker for Thai food, so this was the perfect end to a day full of delicious eats. I’m in love. I’m actually in love with food trailers in Austin. If anyone ever wants to adventure with me in Austin, just message me, or if you need advice about where to eat in Austin I am so your girl!

We ended the day following a double rainbow on the way to the nail salon. It was a good day.
Spooky Snacks and Healthy Halloween Treats

Marvelous In My Monday (MIMM 1)

Hey ya’ll! I thought I would take a break from recapping my Boston trip and share with ya’ll some of the highlights from this past weekend. I know ya’ll are probably excited since all I’ve been talking about for the last few posts is Boston. I can’t help it that I went to college there and I love it.

I’ve decided to hop on the bandwagon and join the fun weekly party hosted by the healthy diva herself, Katie. Reading everyone’s Monday posts always makes me jealous that I don’t participate in Marvelous in My Monday, so finally here I am.

On Friday, I headed over to my younger brother’s new house to check out where he was living this semester and to take him to the UT volleyball game. I discovered that he lives down the street from a cupcakery called Polkadots. Of course I forced him to go over there to try it out with me.

We ordered the Lemon Blueberry and the Dulce De Leche cupcakes. I was sad because I really wanted their flavor of the month, which was a blueberry cheesecake flavor. The Dulce was very delicious and had a surprise of chocolate in the middle, while the lemon blueberry could have used more lemon zest I thought it was pretty good.

After we had half of the cupcakes, we headed over to Gregory Gym to cheer on the no 2 in the nation UT volleyball team. This game wasn’t super exciting because UT was obviously way superior to the team they were playing, but it was still a lot of fun to check out the new recruits (WHO ARE AMAZING). I love good volleyball.

After the game, we headed over to Titayas. It is our favorite Thai place in Austin and we met up with one of my brother’s friends who is freaking hilarious and awesome. I decided on the Vermicelli Lover’s entree with tofu. It was pretty delicious for a thai style vermicelli, but I will be sticking to my Vietnamese vermicelli from now on.

My brother and his friend both ordered the yellow curry, which is what I should have gotten because it is my favorite dish ever at Titayas. I like to branch out though, and I’m glad that I did. It was a good meal with some great company. Especially because my brother’s friend forgot her keys in the waiting area and some old man randomly showed up with them.

The next morning I took two of my volleyball players to the UT volleyball game. It was a tournament this past weekend, so there were three matches in total that UT played in. This match was against Cal Poly, and we destroyed them.

After I took one of the girls home, I made the other one stop for frozen yogurt at this place called Froyoyo. First off, it was impossible to find because my googlemaps kept lying to me on my iPhone. Once I found it I was happy. They have 8 calorie frozen yogurt per oz. So a half a cup of froyo is only 32 calories. HEAVEN. I ended up getting strawberry cheesecake and chocolate. It was delicious. Plus this place had gluten free cookie dough and brownie bits, so I gave myself some great toppings.

I hope everyone had a fantastic weekend! I know I did.

Do you watch a NCAA sport?
What is your favorite college sports team to watch?

Arriving Home (Boston Day 1)

Hey ya’ll! I have finally returned back to Austin after a long day of flying and crazy people pushing, shoving at the airport. It is time for the Boston trip recap. I’m sort of ambivalent right now because I really miss Boston, but I’m excited for school to start so I can finish my 5th year and graduate onto bigger and better things.

When I landed in Boston, since I’m a local and all (yes I only lived there two years, but that city became a huge part of me), I decided to take the subway to my best friends apartment. Of course I missed the bus about 4 times before I finally was able to carry my huge suitcase. My best friend, Carrianne, had just gotten off work and I was meeting her and her boyfriend at her apartment. We chilled for a while, finally caught up with each other (she had been in India and China for a semester), and decided what to get for dinner. We chose to get Thai food, and headed over to Dok Bua in Brookline on Harvard Street.

This place is crazy. They have like a gigantic menu with tons and tons of pictures. I was already in heaven since I love looking at pictures of food (food blogger trait? I think so). Apparently, after the fact that I ate here, my dad emailed me a zagats list of the best 5 Thai places in Boston, and Dok Bua was on the list. Success. It took me forever to figure out what I wanted since the menu was so large.

I settled on Pla-Muk-Tod for an appetizer. This is deep fried calamari with a sweet sauce. Oh my oh my. This was some of the best calamari I have ever head. The batter that it was fried in was crispy, but still had this airy texture that was light. The sweet sauce accompanying the dish was perfect. It wasn’t too sweet, and had a subtle hint of a variety of thai flavors. I liked dipping everything in it.

For my main dish, I went pretty simple and just got pad Thai. It came with tons of vegetables, which was perfect because I needed some after a long flight of eating nothing but a sandwich of peanut butter and jelly. The meal was really filling, but not too bad since I didn’t feel stuffed, which is definitely one of the worst feelings ever. After dinner, we walked back to the apartment, watched some TV, and headed to bed early since Carrianne had work and I was exhausted from flying and getting up at like 7 am (I know I should get used to it since school starts on Monday).

Do you eat a lot of Thai?
What is your favorite Thai dish?