Fine, fine, I was attempting to justify reprinting the brownie recipe by calling attention to some health benefits. I admit it. I didn't make them though. (Though I did put together some chocolate chip cookies for my friends' Ammad and Stephanie's housewarming party on Saturday.)
I had my MRI last week and get the results soon. My knee still feels fine, my foot still is sore, and I am still doing a daily conditioning class at the gym. I'm training 3x a week to ease back into things, but I felt great on Friday. I hit our noon open mat after the conditioning class (as an aside: I was faced with a dilemma. Go straight from the gym to the academy, sweaty but not stinky, and change at the academy into a clean dry gi, rashie etc, and get 50 minutes of rolling in... or shower at the gym, change into the dry gi etc, and get 25 minutes of rolling... I chose to maximize mat time, on the theory that within 5 minutes I would be sweaty again, so why bother with the shower. I promise, I wasn't stinky, just sweaty. Your thoughts?)
Anyway I had some really fun rolls on Friday, first with a big technical whitebelt-who-is-really-more-like-a-bluebelt... he had a beautiful scarf hold with his arm wrapped all the way around my waist and under my hips and I couldn't get out for love or money. I had to wait for him to move and try to capitalize. He was also really good about looking for a cross collar choke from bottom half guard, so I was torn between wanting to finish the pass (meaning I couldn't fight his grips) or fighting his grips (and getting swept.) It was a beautiful conundrum that we worked through 3 separate times. The first time, I got the pass, he kept his grips, I went for the armbar and he reversed me, coming up into side control :( Second time, I got the armbar. Third time, he got the choke even though I got the pass, because he kept his arms low and his wrists near his hips. It was beautiful execution even though I was on the choke-end of the choke. :)
I also got to roll nogi with another friend who I love training with because he's always saying nice things about the people he rolls with. He makes you really feel good about yourself and how you roll... what more can you ask for? Plus I always need more practice at nogi. Especially because my friend Dagney, with whom I am staying during my trip to San Diego in November, is mentioning maybe going to watch Nogi Worlds if it happens to be that weekend. Well, you know how my brain works.. if it happens to be that weekend, maybe I might as well compete :) THAT would be a laugh-- I never train nogi, and I'm so out of my usual weight class... but what the hey...
Saturday I worked as a scorekeeper for a small local tournament put together by Lone Star BJJ Federation. I think it was the perfect size for a youth tournament (it was billed as the Youth State Championships, though it also had adult divisions, albeit lightly attended) or even as an adult's first tournament. They had 5 mats running at once, and the whole thing took about 4 hours start to finish. I like the people who put it on and was happy to help them out. I heard some complaints about the rules, which were a little unusual and therefore I think inconsistently applied by refs who were unfamiliar with them. For kids and teens, no pulling on the head at all; ie in triangles, you have to pull around the knee too. This meant that guillotines apparently caused some confusion-- one kid won with a guillotine, while on another mat a kid was made to let go of a guillotine. Anyway, a good way to spend a few hours, and I saw some talented kids and teens, too. Two young ladies (around 16 y/o I think) fought guys their age, and I was impressed.
Here's more recipes, some healthy, one not. :)
Summer Corn Chowder from Fine Cooking...
Serves 6 as a first course; 180 calories per serving.
5 ears fresh corn
~20 medium stalks of green onion (around 7 oz.)
3 slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
1 jalapeño, cored, seeded, and finely diced
1 tsp. kosher salt; more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
3-1/2 cups low-salt chicken broth
1 large Yukon Gold potato (8 to 9 oz.), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice (about 1-1/2 cups)
1-1/2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
2 Tbs. heavy cream
Husk the corn and cut off the kernels. Reserve two of the corn cobs and discard the others. Trim and thinly slice the scallions, keeping the dark-green parts separate from the white and light-green parts.
Cook the bacon in a 3- or 4-qt. saucepan over medium heat until browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate. Pour off and discard all but about 1 Tbsp. of the bacon fat. Return the pan to medium heat and add the butter. When the butter is melted, add the white and light-green scallions and the jalapeño, salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Cook, stirring, until the scallions are very soft, about 3 min.
Add the broth, corn, corn cobs, potatoes, and thyme and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer until the potatoes are completely tender, about 15 min. Discard the corn cobs.
Transfer 1 cup of the broth and vegetables to a blender and puree. Return the puree to the pot and stir in the cream and all but 1/3 cup of the scallion greens. Simmer, stirring occasionally, for a couple of minutes to wilt the scallions and blend the flavors. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve sprinkled with the bacon and reserved scallions.
Lemon-Blueberry Buttermilk Cupcakes with Honey-Cream Cheese Frosting, from Evan's blog Chocolate and Chaturangas
for the cupcakes
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
2 cups bleached flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 cup buttermilk, room temperature
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
Zest of 3 lemons
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
1 tbsp. flour
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put paper cupcake liners in a 12-cup muffin pan. Toss the blueberries with 1 tbsp. flour. Beat the butter, lemon zest, and sugar for 5 minutes at medium speed until light and fluffy (be sure to do the entire 5 minutes – this makes a big difference!). Beat in eggs one at a time, scraping bowl and beaters between each to incorporate.
Sift flour with the baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Add a quarter of the flour mixture to the butter-egg mixture. Then add vanilla and a third of the buttermilk. Repeat, beginning and ending with the flour mixture and scraping well after each addition. Gently fold in the blueberries.
Pour batter into prepared muffin pans. Bake 18-20 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool pans on a rack for 5 minutes. Turn cakes out and cool completely.
for the icing
8 oz. softened cream cheese
1 stick softened butter
2 cups confectioner’s sugar
1/3 cup honey
Zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
Large pinch of salt
In a mixer or a large bowl, combine the ingredients until completely smooth. It will be a bit runny, but that’s how it’s supposed to look (I prefer my icing creamy and on the runny side; add more confectioner’s sugar or less honey/lemon juice if you beg to differ). Ice the cooled cupcakes and top each with the prettiest blueberries you can find.
Lastly, for lunches at work... make up a big batch of quinoa or brown rice and keep in the fridge. Here's some variations for grain-based salads (good by themselves, or over greens, or in a lettuce wrap:
Half a can of garbanzo beans, rinsed
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced and quartered
1 pt cherry tomatoes, halved
black or kalamata olives, pitted and halved
fresh oregano to taste, chopped finely
2 oz feta cheese, crumbled
vinaigrette salad dressing
Half a can of low-sodium black beans, rinsed
1/2 red bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup corn
1/2 cup diced chicken breast, lean steak or shrimp (great use for dinner leftovers)
Dressing: light sour cream, fresh lime juice, two finely minced green onions and a dash of hot sauce
Fruit & Nut:
Handful dried cranberries
Handful sliced almonds
Dressing: apple cider vinegar, extra-virgin olive oil and Dijon mustard
1/4 cup shelled edamame
1/2 cup chicken breast, lean steak or shrimp (great use for dinner leftovers)
1/2 avocado, diced
Dressing: Soy sauce, sesame oil, lime juice and a dash of chili oil or hot sauce