Easter Weekend (Running and Eating)

by katie

We had a nice, relaxing Easter weekend.  We spent some time yesterday finishing up a little project in the back yard (I use the term “yard” loosely).  I’ll post about that tomorrow.  Otherwise, we just hung out with friends, worked out, and ate.

On the workout front, I’ve started doing an hour-long spin class on Saturdays for cross-training.  I think it’s good for me, but since my long runs are on Sunday, my legs are super tired.  This Sunday was the half-way point in my training.  There is a little break in the schedule at this point, so instead of doing a long run, I did a 5K for time.  I beat my goal time by one minute, but I did not count all the times I had to stop and stretch out my calves.  Is that cheating?  Yes.  I was still pretty happy with myself because I didn’t walk at all and ran pretty fast.  I need to use the roller on my calf muscles, though, especially if I’m going to keep going to spin class.

On the eating front, I cooked more this weekend than I have in a while.  It was nice!  I made a quiche for breakfast on Easter Sunday:

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Fresh out of the oven. This is a store-bought crust, btw.  I make a lot of things, but homemade pie crust is not one of them.  It’s just not worth it to me.  Judge away.

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Immediately pre-consumption.  I was so hungry, I can’t believe I actually stopped long enough to take this picture.

For lunch, I made mushroom bruschetta with ricotta and a small arugula salad.  I fried the bread in a mixture of butter and olive oil, thereby negating any “light lunch” characteristics this would have had otherwise.  Oh well.

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To make the mushroom topping, I sliced up a container of regular button mushrooms.  Then I sauteed them in butter and oil until they were nice and brown.  I deglazed the pan with about a tablespoon of balsamic vinegar.  I leave the mushrooms in the pan during this step.  They soak up the extra vinegar that doesn’t evaporate, and the released brown bits stick to the mushroom slices.  Yum.  I also added some fresh thyme, salt, and pepper.  The whole process takes about 10 minutes.  So easy.  The salad is just arugula with pine nuts and sundried tomatoes.  I dressed it with with champagne vinaigrette from Trader Joe’s.

Speaking of pine nuts, a friend of mine recently told me about something called “pine mouth.”  I’d never heard of it, but apparently you get it from eating a bad pine nut.  It totally deadens your sense of taste for weeks.  What?!  She said that pine nuts from China are the primary culprits.  If you buy pignolis from Italy, you should be okay.  She owns a specialty food store and has stopped carrying pine nuts altogether (even the Italian kind) because of this.  One of her employees got it from a random pine nut somewhere, and said it was just awful.

I also made Easter dinner but was too busy cooking, eating, and laughing to stop and take pictures of it.  Here’s what I made: hot smoked salmon with dill sauce, cheddar dill scones, roasted carrots (sans dill because enough is enough), and lemon pie.  It was a Barefoot Contessa Easter!  We did the salmon on our Big Green Egg.  They are expensive, so not for everyone, but ours has been a game-changer for us.  We keep a gas grill around for quick weeknight dinners, but the Egg is definitely a major part of our outdoor life at this point.