Breakfast/ Lunch

Gettin’ Hot In Here!

I skipped the gym this morning. When you are on the go ALL the time you never really have any time to get stuff done at home so this morning was catch up. I cleaned out Dexter’s litter box, swept the floor, made breakfast and finishing typing up my dessert report because tonight’s the big night where I’ll make my chai tea dessert recipe for my final practical!

Last night we made tiramusu and it turned out pretty well, but the formula was a bit plain. To spice it up a bit, my partner and I added some Kaluhla to the coffee that we soaked the ladyfingers in. I made two and I am planning on bringing one to work today and saving the rest for the people back home this weekend. We also made an orange mousse cheesecake that has to set overnight, so I will unmolding that tonight. I finally unmolded my ribbon chocolate mousse cake and as you guys can see, it’s colorful! The mousse set up nicely and I liked the pastel shades that the colors in the cake took.

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This morning I made oatmeal but, honestly, I’m getting a little tired of oatmeal now that it’s reaching 100 degrees during the day here. At 9:30 yesterday morning as I was on my way to work I looked at the thermostat in my car and it was already 90 degrees outside. Hot, hot, HOT! Florida in the summertime (Orlando especially it seems) is just too hot for anything. Forget running outside until October!! Smoothies and cold cereal seem like a much better choice these days….I’ll have to work on new smoothie ideas in the days that come.  Today, however, I used 1/2 cup oats, soymilk, dried cherries, banana, pb and maple syrup. It was good…but hot and filling. Bleh.

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I want to introduce you guys to my favorite soup!

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I LOVE cuban black bean soup. Love, love, LOVE it! Ryan can attest to that :). I always order it whenever we go to a Cuban restaurant and I’m always dumping massive amount of hot sauce in it. I found this soup last summer and it’s great because its one of those dry, all natural soups that you simmer for 30 minutes on the stove and the flavors are wonderful and don’t taste at all like something that came out from a can or jar. I made half of this bag today, which I think is two servings of the soup, and I’m bringing it with me to work. Sometimes I like to make brown rice and serve it with the soup, true Cuban style, but today I’m just sticking to the soup with some soy crisps and a pear to fill me up. I’m also bringing some hot sauce along! For a snack later I packed some peanut butter pretzels.

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Tonight I’m going out with some friends to eat at the Cheesecake Factory before class. I haven’t eaten there in years–-any idea of what I should order?!  I think the last time I ate at a cheesecake factory I was in high school! There’s gotta be cool new things on the menu that I don’t know about….

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42 Comments

  • Reply
    Stacy
    June 5, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    Although I’m sure it’s not the healthiest option because of the amount of oil the Evelyn’s Pasta is amazing. It has lots of veggies in the pasta and is in a basic olive oil type sauce. Because the portions are huge I either share it or simply save half (or more) for later. The tiramisu cheesecake is also pretty fabulous.

  • Reply
    ann
    June 5, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    maybe the vegetable chopped salad?! and definitely a fun drink! i’ll be interested to see what you get. doesn’t look like much comes without chicken!
    i always get bummed out when i go there because the wait is long, the portions are too much, and i think it’s a bit overpriced. but the atmosphere is great and everyone can get what they want…lots to choose from! and yes, i have been known to indulge in the wonderful cheesecake ;-0

  • Reply
    arielle
    June 5, 2008 at 1:13 pm

    I wish I was one of the people back home.

  • Reply
    melissa-little runner
    June 5, 2008 at 1:14 pm

    Believe it or not, I am so jealous of your hot weather! I no humidity is no fun, but not being a pasty northeasterner all year–priceless. Maybe swimming will be better than running.

  • Reply
    Romina
    June 5, 2008 at 1:17 pm

    Mm, that soup looks fabulous!

  • Reply
    Sarah
    June 5, 2008 at 1:18 pm

    The vegetable chopped salad is SOOO good! I got it last time I went and it was very tasty…paired with a slice of their bread, the dinner held me over for a long while. 🙂

    The salad was actually what introduced me to adding asparagus to my chopped salads…so delish!

  • Reply
    Mel H
    June 5, 2008 at 1:20 pm

    i hear you on the oatmeal! I eat it almost everyday in the winter but can’t handle it once May starts! I stick to waffles, yogurt parfeits, cold cereal and smoothies and I only drink a half cup of coffee before I work out bc it makes me sweat like crazy! haha! Good luck tonight!

  • Reply
    Kelly L.
    June 5, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    I LOVE CF!!! My favorite is the Jamiacan Black Pepper Shrimp. It’s really spicy shrimp in a brown roux. It comes with rice, mango salsa and black beans and plantains but I sub green beans for the rice (green beans are my favorite). Health wise it’s not too bad. I always always ALWAYS get a piece of Oreo Cheesecake for dessert. I don’t share either. My husband nearly lost his hand in a fork stabbing incident the one time we decided to split a piece. No more. It’s my rule when I go there. I don’t share.

    Sure, the CF has a menu filled with lots of high fat, high calorie options but the great thing about them is they will make any substitutions you want. If you want to be super healthy and super boring you can order an egg white omelet with veggies and a english muffin. Yes, I have done this several times.

    My thought on the CF is I don’t eat there all the time. Maybe once every 6 months or so. When I go I get what I want and dessert. If I was going more often it would be a different story. 🙂 Have fun!

  • Reply
    becky
    June 5, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    I can’t remember if you like eggplant, but the Grilled Eggplant Sandwich there is soooo good! It comes with melted cheese, but you could also ask for none of that. Instead of getting the super-salty fries as a side, ask for the Corn Sucatash. It’s filled with with lots of different veggies (and corn of course!) So good.

  • Reply
    Serena
    June 5, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    I don’t eat there often either but I also order the chopped veggie salad – too funny that so many people order the same thing there! It is really good, and I think you can get a small size!

  • Reply
    Justy2003
    June 5, 2008 at 1:41 pm

    I actually just went to Cheesecake Factory last night and I hadn’t been in a loooong time! Their menu is sooo huge so there’s definitely lots of options! My mom and I both got salads (I got the Luau and she got the Pear Endive) and they were both huge and yummy! Mine came with a couple of big crispy wonton things that I didn’t really eat, but they tasted good as well! Both came with chicken, but I’m sure you could ask for it without!
    Oh, and can you believe I didn’t get cheesecake?! I was in more of an ice cream/chocolate cake mood so I went for that instead 😉
    Enjoy your dinner!

  • Reply
    VTgirl
    June 5, 2008 at 1:53 pm

    I’ve found that almost EVERYTHING on their menu has meat on it, in it, around it, etc. The last time I went there I got a salad with NO meat on it…but was kind of irritated that I paid the full price for the salad and it was just a huge pile of lettuce!!!!! I’m excited to see what you get though!!! Have fun!!!

  • Reply
    Sara F
    June 5, 2008 at 2:14 pm

    i second the grilled eggplant sandwich. Last time i was there I ordered it without the cheese and asked for a side salad in place of the the fries. It was excellent. I would as for no butter though, because the bun was definitely a little too buttery. I don’t eat cheesecake, but I saw smoothies and fresh strawberries on the menu which would make a tasty dessert!

  • Reply
    AshleyH
    June 5, 2008 at 2:31 pm

    oooo Cheesecake factory is amazing it has been a while since I have been there to now that i think of it. I love to order their salmon or any of their pastas!! They are all so great and yummy!
    The dutch apple cheesecake is awesome too!

  • Reply
    Becca A
    June 5, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    Everything I was going to say I would get has already been suggested! Some of the fish dishes sound really good, and the chopped veggie salad sounds really appealing!

  • Reply
    Dinah Soar
    June 5, 2008 at 2:50 pm

    The Vietnamese summer rolls (on the appetizer menu) are wonderful…they are cold, and do have shrimp…you could ask that the shrimp be left out…they are filled with eye appealing fresh veggies and wrapped in rice paper…served with a couple of dipping sauces…I always order them when it’s hot outside…if it’s cold I love the avocado egg rolls…they are deep fried but the avocado filling it wonderful…they are also on the appetizer menu…and one other appetizer item I love has a corn cake layered with other stuff…it is wonderful…BTW…the appetizers are HUGE…too much for one person…if you are sharing, the appetizer sample platter is a good way to go..though I think it might have some meat…it is about $24 so shared 4 ways about the price of an entree each. I’m not a vegetarian but find I love the non-meat appetizers at Cheesecake Factory.

  • Reply
    Kel Lee Leee
    June 5, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    the Luau salad sans chicken is amazinggggg! I literally have dreams about it!

  • Reply
    Richelle
    June 5, 2008 at 3:24 pm

    Black bean soup sounds really good! Too bad we’re lacking on the Cuban restaurants where I’m from =/

  • Reply
    VeggieGirl
    June 5, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    I used to love the vegetable-pasta dishes at CF, before a became a vegan – NOTHING at CF is vegan though (not even the salads, due to cross-contamination – I found this out when I called ahead one time!!), so I don’t go anymore. Enjoy it though!

  • Reply
    Kimberly
    June 5, 2008 at 3:35 pm

    I third the eggplant sandwich — it’s what I always ordered when I got dragged to CF in California. Only I have them sub avocado for the cheese, mustard instead of aioli, and order a side of salad instead of fries. Also, the portabello burger sounds good — I haven’t had it at CF, but can you ever go wrong with a portabello burger?

  • Reply
    Katie R
    June 5, 2008 at 3:49 pm

    Hi Jenna! I have a non-food related question if you don’t mind!!! I know you have a few tattoos… I’m getting my first one!!! I can’t decide on the placement of it/design… of course! What’s your favorite tattoo and where did you get it??

  • Reply
    Katie R
    June 5, 2008 at 3:50 pm

    Oh! And feel free anyone else that wants to give some input because I could use all advice!!!!

  • Reply
    Allyn
    June 5, 2008 at 4:10 pm

    I’ve only eaten there a couple of times, but I’ll second the spring rolls. There’s some kind of southwestern salad (can’t remember the name) and it very tasty (and HUGE!) The good thing is you’ll be able to count on at least one more meal from your leftovers with whatever you order.

    By the way, I should introduce myself. I’m a fan of your blog, and inspiration from you and a few others led me to start my own. It’s very new, but I hope you can check it out someday. I linked you!

  • Reply
    Erin
    June 5, 2008 at 4:36 pm

    I agree with you about this weather! I went to Downtown Disney/Westside yesterday (will blog about it later) and the weather was unbearable!! There’s only so much a vegan can do while her family gets ice cream at Ghirardelli… 🙁
    (I got a refreshing fruit cup from Earl of Sandwich instead.)

    Even in the mornings, when the thermostat *says* 75 degrees at 6 a.m., it’s still humid and muggy outside. Gross!

    What’s not gross, though, is that tiramisu. It looks tres magnifique!

    –Erin @ “Vegan & the City”

  • Reply
    Leah
    June 5, 2008 at 5:32 pm

    Jenna- you work at a restaurant right? Do you find that you actually have time to sit down and eat a decent lunch? I work at a restaurant as well and sometimes go 6+ hours without a break (not even to the loo!) so it’s awesome if you get to sit down and have an actual lunch!

  • Reply
    Betsy
    June 5, 2008 at 6:07 pm

    i would get the veggie chopped appetizer salad. the regular ones are too fricking huge!!!!!!!!

    it’s starting to get too hot here for oatmeal as well, which is making me kinda sad 🙁

  • Reply
    Chef Erin
    June 5, 2008 at 6:12 pm

    Ugh- I know what you mean about the weather! Today I went to the gym, and there is nothing like getting hot and nasty sweaty inside, then walking outside and getting smacked in the face with a wave of muggy heat. Not exactly refreshing.

  • Reply
    caitlinbo
    June 5, 2008 at 7:22 pm

    katie r – i highly recommend on your hip, where a bikini would cover it. the so-called “tramp stamp” (sorry everyone) is cute but it’s often visible to bosses and stuff, anything on your back would probably be visible in your wedding dress…. hahah hip is the best place to ‘hide’ a tat! i love mine 🙂

    i dunno about the foot tats either… you’ve got to think long-term. in 20 years, odds are you wont want people seeing your tat on a daily basis.

  • Reply
    cbinkc
    June 5, 2008 at 7:51 pm

    I love SMOOTHIES! For my favorite combo right I used canned pumpkin, soymilk, a little brown sugar, nutmeg, and a lot of cinnamon. I always add ice because I like them really cold!

  • Reply
    BethT
    June 5, 2008 at 8:25 pm

    I would not get a tattoo on your hip. If you gain weight, even during pregnancy, it can get really stretched out/stretch marky!

  • Reply
    jenna
    June 5, 2008 at 8:30 pm

    Leah,

    I work at a restaurant, but not when the restaurant is open ;). I have a desk job where I do various admin stuff, take reservations, write letters, make phone calls…that sort of thing. It works well for me because the hours are what I need, its relaxed (for the most part) and I get to bring my lunch and eat it whenever I want. The only other person in the restaurant is usually the chef and, in the afternoon, a manager. When I worked during service hours I would eat a huge meal before hand and then bring snacks like trail mix that I would eat during “bathroom breaks”. Haha 😉

    Katie R,

    I have two tattoos—one on my back and one on my foot. The first one I got when I was 19 and I went with my mom and just picked a flower off the wall (embarrassed face here). I always forget about it though because I never see it…I actually really like what I got though because its like a blue cornflower and its really pretty. Not just a random daisy or something. Then…in college one day my roommate convinced me to go with her to get one and sucked me into getting another—TOTAL college spontaneous moment where we both got matching flowers on our feet. I don’t regret either of them though and really like them a lot! Just remember…they will be there for the rest of your life so plan accordingly!

  • Reply
    Amy S.
    June 5, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    I made a delicious smoothie the other a.m. with Almond Milk. there’s a low-fat one (40 cal!) and it isn’t too high in sugar either. That’s whay I only buy Westsoy organic unsweetened b/c it has 1 g sugar. Silk and others are way too sugary. Anyway I mixed:

    almond milk
    pineapples
    mango
    banana
    So it was very tropical. I feel that I need to add a banana for thickness.

    I live in Boston so it’s not very nice this week but I cannot stand humidity and could never live in Florida though I bet I would be thinner.

  • Reply
    Emily W.
    June 5, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    TRY THE ROASTED VEGETABLES AND GOAT CHEESE PIZZA (with NO cheese) and a side salad with Vinaigrette. It is sooo good! MMM!

  • Reply
    NJ
    June 5, 2008 at 9:29 pm

    I love hot weather! I guess living in Orlando is good for people like me, I say, the sweatier the better. I almost never get uncomfortably hot. But, I also run at the gym and NOT outdoors in the heat. That is mos def bad news.

    I like to get angel hair with marinara at CF. There is a huge portion of course, and I have some for lunch the next day because I eat half or less AND have dessert. I’m with Kelly, going every once in a blue moon allows me to enjoy it.

    Also, I wanted to spin off something posted for the fellow vegetarians…

    The poster that commented on getting salads without the meat on it and paying full price. I too hate this, and will once in awhile, depending on the situation and place, ask if they can adjust the price if I get no meat. Not at cheaper places but, for instance, at a nicer place if I want a salad that has great sounding ingredients but the piece de’ resistance (spelling-bad:) is like, steak of some sort, I will ask and see if they let me pay less. Anyone else do this or am I the only one? (Embarrassed face)

  • Reply
    Christina
    June 5, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    Good luck with your project tonight!

  • Reply
    Nikki
    June 5, 2008 at 11:01 pm

    Hey Jenna,

    What is the brand name of the peanut butter puffins that you eat? Do you buy them at Whole Foods?

    Thanks in advance!

  • Reply
    girlatastartup
    June 5, 2008 at 11:35 pm

    Hey guys,

    Do you think its bad to eat too many soy products, like if you have a soy latte in the morning, then “Soy” burgers for lunch?
    How much is too much? There’s always conflicting nutritional advice about this and I wanted to pick everyone’s brains.

    Thanks!

  • Reply
    kristin point
    June 5, 2008 at 11:52 pm

    The veggie chopped salad with the pomagranate vinegarette is sooo good. You could just ask for it w.no cheese. I could only eat like 1/3 of it but it was soo good. Have fun!

  • Reply
    cat
    June 6, 2008 at 12:23 am

    hey, i remember seeing comments from a bunch of people in d.c. a while back. did you guys ever meet up? and if not, does anyone want to plan something this weekend or next week… perhaps a visit to the new tangysweet fro-yo place in dupont??

  • Reply
    jenna
    June 6, 2008 at 1:33 am

    Nikki,

    The brand is Barbara’s and yes you can get them at Whole Foods. They rock!

  • Reply
    RhodeyGirl
    June 6, 2008 at 12:34 pm

    I would just like to point out that oatmeal was way too hot for you, yet you had SOUP for lunch!! hahahaha! 🙂

  • Reply
    jenna
    June 6, 2008 at 12:58 pm

    the restaurant where I work is freezing!!!!!!!!! hahaha 🙂

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