Thanksgiving dinner & things in life…

Hello beautiful people 😀

It’s been a few days I know! But I swear since @mymamus and I came back from Greece it has been totally crazy for one reason or the other. So what’s up lately? Not anything too exciting I admit. More like me buried under tons of data analysis for an upcoming presentation, filling out reports and working like usual… As for fitness well I admit to NOTHING!

After the marathon both my body and mind needed a break. I felt totally burnt out, so I have not run/worked out in about 2 weeks (and change…) and yo know what? I am OK with that! I listened to my body and waited till it felt rested enough to start being active again. And I think right about now is the time! Tuesday was the first time in weeks that I woke up and felt rested! So yes, we are good!

I am slowly getting into it again… Eating mindfully and start being more active! Tonight will be the first time I do a weight session after I don’t even know how long 😀 😀 😀 totally can’t wait!!!

So, what about Thanksgiving?!?!?! Some of you might have gotten a glimpse of photos on FB that might need an explantion LOL! like this one…

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World meet our new family addition Sir Pickleton (of Tooting) the 3rd 🙂 Isn’t he the cutest ?!?!?!LOL!! He wasn’t suppose to stay but life being funny and all he ended up staying with us for good! He is the perfect cuddling machine hahaha! (do note @mymaus face as he is trying to photobomb my photo … priceless)

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Oh and maybe this one?

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Yes once every blue moon I turn into a domesticated housewife from the ’60s! And totally loving it ❤

We also had the best company!! Our friends Katalin, and Sabine and Glenn (my friend Corey’s hubby) along with mr.Ripley of course who stole the spotlight immediately! Isn’t he the cutest??

 

And what about food, you shall ask….and you shall receive 😉

We started with some (homemade) orange cranberry bellinis – I cant believe I actually managed a 3 coloured cocktail!!! – jaw dropped –

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And a cheese platter and nibbles…

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Then we had mushroom and chestnut creamy soup – Yum! The recipe was a courtesy of @mymamus’s mum – Thank you @taleoftworuns_M&M ❤

For main I used this turkey recipe  with bourbon and apples stuffed with oranges, celery and cranberries. SUCCESS!

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For side dishes we had creamy Brussel sprouts with bacon and sweet potato mush topped with caramelised pecans 😀 I wasn’t very good at taking photos and cooking at the same time …

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Along with cranberry chutney and homemade traditional Greek milk pie for dessert.

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Of course, when you live in a small apartment and you are trying to cook a big turkey you NEED to be creative… So when the recipe called for a “completely submerge to the marinade” turkey well… we kinda had to improvise…

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Yes that is the mop bucket containing the turkey in my fridge… Yes it is a new bucket that i haven’t ever used for its actual use…. Yes I did wash it VERY well before using it and YES I did lined it up with a clean plastic bag before I put anything in it LOL! So technically the bucket was just a support to the overflowing plastic bag…

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Also note how the aluminium baking tray is all curled up at the sides…well that can happen when your over is too small for you turkey hahahaha!!! Oh well… logistics…

All and all it was an awesome day, spent with wonderful people and both @mymamus and I are thankful for that 🙂

PS: don’t forget my christmas give away!!! You can enter here!

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Favourite fall salad recipe :)

You say Brussel sprouts I used to say – Blaaahh!!! I hated them for years… After my very first attempt to diet, back in 2007. I ate so many of them, boiled and blunt, that i ‘d never even wanted to hear about them.

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Until a few years ago, when a friend and me went over for dinner to one of my favourite restaurants in NYC by my old lab – The Grange bar and eatery, and he order the warm Brussel sprout salad. Well I obviously cringed, but then when it actually came and I tried it I was a big fan!

Now, fast forward a few years later, and I walked into the grocery store here and literally bump into a bag of brussel sprouts! After a long moment of me staring at them and them staring back at me I placed them in my basket wanted to try – this is the key word here – to recreate from memory that salad I had a few years back…

Did it work? Oh yes it did! @mymamus and I are totally hooked!!

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INGREDIENTS

2lbs fresh (I ‘ve never used frozen) brussels sprouts

0.5 lbs bacon bits

olive oil

salt (I love Himalayan salt) and pepper

Optional toppings:

chopped pecans, parmesan cheese, poached egg

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Heat the olive oil in a pan and brown the bacon bits. Cut the stems and wash the brussels sprouts. Dry them up using a paper towel and cut them into 3 pieces in a direction parallel to their stem. Once the bacon is cooked – not crispy – place the cut brussels sprouts in the pan and occasionally stir. Once the brussels sprouts are a little softer, add salt and pepper to taste. Leave them in medium heat until the brussels sprout are cooked and tender and not crunchy.

Pour contains into a plate and topped either with pecans and parmesan cheese or with a poached egg 🙂

Let me know what do you think! If you are a bacon lover like myself you ‘ll certainly enjoy it!

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Whey Box Protein Powder – REVIEW

Hi friends 🙂

A few weeks ago I got a really cool opportunity to review a new to the market (UK local) protein powder called WHEY BOX! They are the new kid on the block and I have to admit I am totally hooked!

I got a few different flavours to try 😀 along with a really cool shaker!

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The flavours I got to try where:

  • Chocolate
  • Chocolate & orange
  • Cookies & cream
  • Gingerbread
  • Mint chocolate

I really like all of them a lot! I tried the chocolate ones blended along with frozen bananas and unsweetened almond milk and the cookies & cream just shaken with water. The taste was great and the texture was very smooth. None of that weird after taste I usually get with some other whey protein brands.

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Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 09.15.34As for the gingerbread flavour well i did a little experiment there and poured it into my Alpro plain soya yogurt -protein on protein yup! – and guess what? I totally recommended! It was a huge win 😀

The only one I didn’t try myself was the Mint chocolate since I have a strange aversion to mint! Gave it to a friend and she was very pleased with the taste. oh, and when they say”pocket size, convenient packs”… they mean it 😉

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Also I love the fact that you can order different flavours and they all come to you where ever you want and whenever you want. Totally convinient and so not boring! I ‘ve had the issue of getting bored with one flavour since protein tubs are usually 1kg – this is a lot of protein…

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So all and all, yes, I would recommend you guys to try Whey Box. They ship fast and almost everywhere! And you can get £5 off your first order 🙂

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5 Favourite recipes with BLUEBERRIES :)

Hi friends 🙂

Screen Shot 2016-05-24 at 10.20.25This post is a short and sweet one 😉 Today I am sharing my very favourite blueberry recipes! No matter if it is a dessert, a main or a side dish… blueberries can sneak their way into any food! I am on the blue(-berry) train these days and adding them to EVERYTHING!! They are like the best dessert along with their “Oh so popular” cousin, strawberries!

But why are blueberries good for you?? they look pretty tiny and inconspicuous right?

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So starting with the most important meal of the day BREAKFAST:

Blueberry muffins from my personal favourite The lean green bean – I swear over Lindsey’s recipes! they are always sooo yummy!

Another breakfast staple of course, Blueberry pancakes 🙂 I love this recipe from Vicki and Alan over at the Cast Iron Cookie 🙂

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As for DESSERTS – or even breakfast – these Blueberry pineapple hand pies from Julie over at Hostess at heart are simply delicious!! I’d definitely add some powder sugar over them thought!

Blueberries in your main dish??? erm, it’s a definite  YES for me!!! Here is a seriously yummy recipe from Taste of Home for pork with a blueberry herb sauce!

Ok, hands up who loves a good creamy coleslaw??? Well then, how not to love this berry coleslaw twist?

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I hope everyone is having an awesome week so far 🙂 I had a rough start to it, since I slept in on Sunday morning and then couldn’t for the life of me fell asleep at night so I just stayed up till Monday morning 😦 But i got home after work and literally crashed right after dinner at around 7pm…. Oh the wild life of a party animal!! LOL!

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Zucchini Lasagna #YumYum

Hi friends!!!

I am super excited to share yet another recipe with you today 🙂

Zucchini Lasagna

This is one of our favourites here and so easy to make! It took me about 40′ yesterday from start to finish!

Ingredients:

100-150gr (low fat) grated cheddar cheese

3 zucchini

1 lbs ground turkey

1 jar (low sodium) pasta sauce – we like the one with added chunky veggies

3 egg whites

1 tsp coconut oil

spices of your liking to taste…

Now, all you need to do is use one of those babies and turn your zucchini into zoodles, place them in the pan and mix with the egg whites. While you are making zoodles, brown the ground turkey using the coconut oil, add your spices and then pour the sauce. Let it cook for about 10′ and then while still hot pour the sauce over the zoodles and make sure it covers the whole pan. Top with the grated cheese and stick it in the over for about 25′-30′.

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Let it stand for about 10′ before cutting it. Keep in mind there might be some excess water due to the fact that the zucchinis were uncooked but it really doesn’t affect the taste at all!!

Also apologies for the awful photo below but I have to admit … I was waaaay to hungry to try and make it look pretty! But do take my word on it, it was DELICIOUS!!

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Oat, honey and peanut butter power bars.

Hi friends 🙂

This is one of my favourite recipes and I have been making it for about 4 years now. These oat, honey and peanut butter power bars make the perfect pre or post work out snack and also they are great for a grab-and-go easy breakfast.

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The ingredients for the basic mix are:

  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup peanut butter – i prefer smooth but crunch works too
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1 tbs vanilla extract
  • 4 tbs chia seeds

Add ons to the basic mix:

  • chocolate chip
  • coconut flakes
  • nuts, seeds, raisins, dried fruit
  • anything else solid you might like…

Mix the ingredients (following the order above) in a large bowl until everything has bond together. Place mix in a shallow pan approximately 1 inch deep and use your hand or a rolling pin to roll the “dough” in the pan.

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Bake for about 20-25 minutes at 4000F (200C) or until the edges are golden .

Make sure to let it completely cool before cutting it into squares since it will crumble if it is still hot.

Enjoy!!

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Chicken Caesar’s recipe with homemade light dressing

Hi friends 🙂

Here is another yummy recipe to share with you… Extremely simple and fast and equally tasty!

Who doesn’t love a good ol’ Caesar’s salad, right?? But then you think the dressing only is sooooo many calories and unhealthy fats packed in just a few tablespoons. Well, here is my version of a light homemade Caesar’s salad and dressing.

Ingredients

For the salad:

Greens – I use lettuce and spinach

1/2 chopped red pepper

1 hard boiled egg

2 small chicken breasts – I usually bake them in oven with some salt, pepper and smoked paprika

Toss all ingredients together in a big plate.

For the dressing:

1/2 cup fat free yogurt

2 tbs cottage cheese

1 tbs pesto sauce

Juice of half lime

1 tsp olive oil

Mix in all the ingredients in a bowl, add salt and pepper to taste and pour over your salad! you can top it with seeds, nuts or chia seeds 🙂 And voilá! Restaurant quality Caesar’s salad right in front of you.

Enjoy!

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5 Delicious salad recipes

Hi friends 😀

I hope you are all doing great!! Everything is well around these parts of the woods. We had an awesome few days with my favourite @M&M_taleoftworuns (MIL) and I have a little confession to make… somehow 3 pounds managed to find their way in me LOL! During @M&M_taleoftworuns’s visit we ate – no really, WE ATE – quite a bit more than usual…I mean, it isn’t such a big deal and I enjoyed every single bite! Oh this woman can cook! We are talking home made bread and pies (both sweet and savoury) and cookies and home made greek food… So here we are now where both of us are … hmm how to put it nicely?!?! Well there is a little “more” of us than before 😛 So both me and @mymamus decided to kick it into a little lighter gear than before… Not a really big deal since we really both love salads and greens but it made me to come up with a few seriously yummy salad recipes! These are the kind of salads that can provide you with a solid dinner, packed with protein and fiber and very little, if any, carbohydrates 🙂

#1 Soya sauce pan seared turkey breast over greens (lettuce, string beans, spinach) with corn and cherry tomatoes – topped with black sesame seed and a light balsamic vinaigrette.

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#2 Baked chicken breast over pan seared Brussel sprouts in coconut oil with avocado, cherry tomatoes and a poached egg topped with chia seeds and a pinch of chilli powered.

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#3 Shredded baked salmon on soya sauce over roasted broccoli and sweet potato chunks with lettuce topped with avocado and black sesame seeds.

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#4 Soya sauce pan seared chicken over kale and spinach greens with pineapple, cucumber  and avocado chunks topped with pecans, white sesame seeds and cheese (low fat) crumbles.

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#5 Balsamic and rosemary glazed-baked carrots and chicken over lettuce and sweetcorn.

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Of course all 5 recipes are @mymamus approved. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did!

Bon appetit mon amis 😀

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High Five Friday :D

Hello Friends!!!

Yay, it is Friday 🙂 Well I have to admit that this week was a little hard and it kind of went really – like REALLY – slow… but here it is again, the weekend! I was feeling quite under the weather after my race on Sunday so I took it very easy this week. Since as we all know running and coughing ain’t a good combo I kept low and did a lot of stretching and yoga till this silly cold/allergy of mine goes away.

* 5 pictures = 5000 thousand words *

  1. New PR in my 10k race on Sunday!!! Soooo excited about it!!! Chip time was 55:10! I’ve been wanting this sub 1:00:00 PR for so long. Next goal is a sub 2:00:00 half next month 😀
  2. Dinner last night was this salad. It was so tasty and simple… any type of greens you have handy – i like a mix with lettuce, kale, spinach etc – and then soya seared chicken, pinapple chunks and some cheese crambles. Yum Yum 😛
  3. Brunching like champs around here! Homemade dinner rolls topped with avocado spread and poached eggs and tiny bacon bits. Of course we couldn’t not have Bloody Mary 😉
  4. This is my favourite body lotion. The Japanese blossom from bath & body works, which i can not get anywhere here in the UK. But many many many thanks to my awesome friend Jen who just visited NYC last week – me jealous?!?!?! naaah! just turning green cause its fun 😛 – and she brought me back 2 bottles of this amazing lotion! Thanks sooo much Jen xxx
  5. Even though the course from Sunday’s race wasn’t an easy one with two really steep uphills and some parts covered in gravel – i hate gravel…- I can’t say it wasn’t pretty, with views of the canal and the stadium, this weird sculpture and open spaces.

So all an all as you can see this week was all about relaxing – and much needed sleeping – and nourishment. Sometimes you just have to listen to your body!

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* 5 things I loved this week… *

  1. Janae’s, from Hungry runner girl, new idea of sharing everyone’s accomplishments every Friday! I love it! It feels so amazing to see people accomplishing goals that have been working so hard for!
  2. Seeing cuteness like this one! Come on now, like bunnies ain’t cute enough as it is right?!?!
  3. An awesome new idea from a few of my favourite bloggers 🙂 Angela from Happy Fit Mama  came up with another amazing idea –> a monthly work out round up with a different theme every month. Check it out in Carly’s from Fine Fit Day blog as well 🙂 I loved the work outs of this month since I am mostly working out at home!
  4. Oh, did I mention that my role model, who happens to be one of the greatest athletes I ‘ve ever known gave an INTERVIEW here at Tale of two runs!! I am so excited to share this with you guys this weekend!! Can not wait!!
  5. So as some of you might know @dad_taleoftworuns is coming to visit in a little less than 2 weeks, and spend his 60th birthday with us here 🙂 I was so excited yesterday to arrange a few – seriously amazing – things for us to do for his big day! Well I can’t really say what since he is reading my blog and don’t want to ruin the surprise but you ‘ll see photos soon 😉

I hope everyone has an awesome weekend! Let me know of what awesome plans you are having?!?! A long run, meet up with friends, anything special?

Enjoy!

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Random Thursday thoughts

Hello everyone!

It is already Thursday, WOW! What happened to the week, right? 🙂

Well it’s been pretty busy around here, since everything is falling into place and I am about to start doing some really amazing science next week!! Woo hoo!!!

–> Random thought #1

Due to the time difference with Greece (-2 hrs) I usually speak to @mama_taleoftworuns just before or just after dinner. And of course every time I get the exact same questions. 1) how is the weather over here and 2) what are we having/had for dinner? Am I the only one that ALWAYS gets asked those questions?!?

So a few nights ago, here we are Skyping and the same two questions get thrown in the conversation (again…). Well, now the thing is, even though I enjoy cooking immensely and even though I am Greek, it seems like I can not cook greek food to save my life… Don’t ask why… all i know is that every (and I do mean EVERY) time I ‘ve tried it has been a memorable disaster! Apart from when it comes to assembling a “meze platter 😉 So my solution is to avoid greek recipes! And to get back to the “what are you having for dinner” question, as you can probably understand it is a little hard for me to explain to my very greek mum my very non-greek recipes. LOL 😀

And this is what we had for dinner the other night (i haven’t given it a name yet, any suggestions?!?!?!)

All you need is:

  • 1 chopped eggplant
  • 1 chopped zucchini
  • 1 choppoed pepper
  • 5 frankfurter sausages
  • 1 can tomato sauce (i like the one with mushroom or chunky veggies)
  • toppings; eggs and cheese

Mix all the ingredients together (apart from the toppings) and put mix in a pan and bake for about 40′. Then crack a few eggs over the mixture and add grated cheese (I like parmesan or cheddar) and bake for another 20′. Honestly, it is such an easy recipe and you can choose any veggies you might have in your fridge! (PS: left overs make an awesome lunch 😉 ).

Well I have to admit having this for dinner after one hour of pouring rain and cold wind during my track workout just hit the spot!!

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–> Random thought #2

As you all know by now i love (like really REALLY LOVE) running, and it makes me extra happy when i can put in a few good miles and have sometime where my brain just stop thinking and it gets all quite in my head (in contrary to its extremely loud and messy all-the-time state 😉 )… Well, even though I have run outside in every type of weather, from NYC excruciatingly hot and humid summers to butt-freezing Scottish winters, there is one thing I haven’t mastered yet since we moved to this side of the pond. And this is a morning run! I ‘ve had 6:00 am sweat sessions, yoga sessions, you name it… But I can not make myself get out there at 6:00 am… And as they say a picture worths 1000 words. Well here is an answer of about 2000 words as to why I am so reluctant to do it!

FYI the huge white patch on the back in the first picture it aint no lake…. It is a totally FROZEN field!

–>Random thought #3

I need to resupply on my running gels. This is what I have been using for the past few months.

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What do you guys think? Any suggestions on different ones?

Have an awesome Thursday everyone!

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