A new direction

The weekend has arrived! I couldn’t be more thankful. I have had some life drama concerning my future building for a while now and it all came to head this week when I went to see my academic advisor. As it turns out, my sophomore year of college was essentially for nothing. I don’t want to bore you with the details, but in short, I took organic chemistry, physics, calculus, and biology my sophomore year at UCSB.

My life looked like this:

All of those classes (minus calculus) have accompanying labs, but they are separate from lecture and I only took about half of them. This was partly due to a full schedule and partly due to the infamous budget cuts. At UC Davis, the labs and lecture are the same class, so by not completing all the labs at UCSB, its like I never took 2/3 a year of Ochem, 2/3 a year of physics, and 2/3 a year of biology. Kill me?

I feel ill just writing about it, so I’ll save the rest of that saga for later. Lucky you :).

Sarah, me, and Megan

On a super exciting note, the blogsky and I are featured on the Her Campus website for UC Davis! One of the writers, Megan Carlisle, interviewed me and wrote a lovely article about my story and how I got interested in health and nutrition. To any new readers, welcome! During the interview, she asked me why I have this blog and I have been thinking about my answer ever since. I think I am going to go in a slightly different direction with the blog from now on… Since I started about a year ago, I have been trying to post brand new recipes every few days. Lately, this has gotten more difficult and has seemed like more of a chore. Because my true purpose for having this blog is simply to show people that healthy food can be delicious and easy to make, I think I am going to start posting more of my daily meals, even if they are a bit repetitive or super simple. There are so many amazing blogs out there with fabulous, and often times complicated, recipes – and my blog will never top those. But since that isn’t my goal, I don’t see the point in trying to go in that direction!

I do, however, have a bombbb new recipe for you.

Tart Cherry & Roasted Pistachio Granola Bars

I do not really enjoy granola bars and I find these addictive. They are packed with flavor and high in fiber. Although there is essentially zero added sugar, they are still sweet from the coconut oil and dried cherries.

Recipe: Makes 6 bars

1/2 cup dried tart Montmorency cherries

1/2 cup pistachios, shelled (roasted and salted)

1 tbsp coconut oil

2 tbsp butter

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

3/4 cup oat bran

1/2 cup oats

couple shakes of salt

1/3 cup egg whites

drizzle of honey (optional)

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 350. Blend or pulse the cherries and pistachios in a blender until they are like a crunchy nut butter. If your blender struggles with this, you can add the melted butter or coconut oil.

2. Heat a pan on the stove to medium low heat and add the butter, coconut oil and pistachio-cherry mixture. Let them heat while you combine the oats, oat bran, and salt in a mixing bowl.

3. Use a spatula to transfer all of the pistachio-cherry mixture, butter, and coconut oil into the mixing bowl. Add the vanilla extract. Stir with the spatula. Add the egg whites and honey and stir more.

4. Press the batter into a greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes, or until desired doneness.

 

Perfect for on the go, too!

Benefits:

Cherries * are a great source of fiber and magnesium. In fact, too many cherries in one sitting –> too much magnesium –> RUN not walk to the bathroom! They also contain vitamins A and C, and bioflavonoids and anthocyanins which are antioxidants that can help slow aging and possibly prevent some cancers.

Pistachios * Contain monounsaturated fats which lower LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol levels which helps prevent cardiovascular disease. They are rich in antioxidants, copper, manganese, B6, and thiamin. Vitamin B6 is great for preventing and curing hangovers!

Oats * A prime source of fiber. AlsoΒ contain potassium, phosphorous, pantothenic acid, and magnesium.

Coconut oil * coconut gets a bad rap because of its saturated fat content, but its fatty acids are mainly medium-chain triglycerides, not long-chain. The long-chain triglycerides are bad for our cholesterol levels, but coconut has been shown to improve cholesterol levels. Animal studies suggest that medium-chain triglycerides can increase metabolism. It is great to cook with because it is stable at high temperatures!

Puppy photo of the day…

Kenya and Nina

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22 thoughts on “A new direction

  1. Omg girl congrats! There’s a Her Campus magazine at UCI as well πŸ™‚ How exciting for you!
    Anyways, when I transfered UCs I had the same problem. I literally had to start all over once I got to my current school since I changed my major. So I basically wasted a year and a half of taking some classes for ‘nuttin :(. Ah well. Make the best of it!
    happy wknd πŸ™‚

  2. That’s awful! I really hope you can somehow do something about the courses. Don’t lose hope!

    And I’d love any direction your blog takes. I love seeing what people eat on a regular basis! It gives me realistic ideas of what to make myself when I don’t have time to get together a list of ingredients to make an attractive meal.. which seems to be all the time.

  3. Hey girl, I’m so sorry about all the credit-transferring drama! In the end, I’m sure it’s all worth it though…since you’re so much happier at your new school!

    Also, can’t wait to see some daily eats. You’re so creative that I always wonder what you throw together on the reg! Plus, once I get back to the states I’ll have more yummy ingredients to work with and can’t wait to get cooookin

  4. UGH! I am SO SORRY girl! Sometimes colleges make things way more confusing than they need to be about what is required and what isn’t…they’re so evasive about these things! I hope it all gets sorted out in some optimal way…whatever that is.

    I love simple healthy recipes so I can’t wait to see your new posts! ANd these granola bars look like the best things ever…seriously.

  5. I’m sorry friend! I’ve been there. And I lost a bunch of classes when I transferred so it felt like a big waste of time. Keep moving forward though! And what a killer combo of tart cherry and pistachio – sounds amazing.

  6. i am soooo sorry girl- i HATE how confusing class and college can be with scheduling! ahh! it will work out. im sorry! those bars look AWESOME tho!

  7. Oh dear, that sounds miserable. I’m sorry for all your troubles! But these granola bars do look wonderful. I love how simple they look. I make lots of granola but have never tried bars. I’m putting these on the list to try. Thanks for sharing.

  8. You’re too cute! Hooray for awesome news among the sea of bad news- stupid UCSB trying to be different… blah. I’m anxious to hear more about this situation. It really does suck though! 😦

    I feel ya on not wanting to turn your blog into something else, trying to keep up with all the rest of the over the top incredible blogs out there. I get soooooooooooo overwhelmed trying to produce a blog people want to read but when I think about it, I have the few amazing people (you!) who do read my blog. I really don’t need anyone else. πŸ˜‰

    Love ya!

  9. Oh dear. Credits and transfers and core requirements, etc…drive me crazy. I’m sorry you’re having a hard time with them! They can be sooo frustrating, esp if you’re stuck to fulfill a class requirement you have zero interest in…and then find out they don’t matter anyway.

    Congrats on the article!! Woo hoo! You’re semi-famous! πŸ˜€

  10. Uggggggh, I totally avoided math/science at UCSB like the plague ha. I started out as Psych, then veered towards an English/French double major. Still involved.

    But those granola bars look awesome! I totally want to make my own soon πŸ™‚ And also, can I say how cute you look in that picture?! That shirt is adorable!

  11. I stumbled on your blog a few days ago when I was looking for a poppyseed muffin recipe and love what you’re doing! I am in college too (also a UC! and considered transferring to Davis for the dietician program two years ago), and it really helps to see what the day-to-day cooking is like for someone else who is busy balancing class/roommates/a dog. It’s kind of blowing my mind actually because you mentioned something about DG, which I used to be a part of as well. It’ll only be a matter of time til you start cooking for your dog as well- looking forward to those recipes!!

    1. WOW small world!! I love UCD. I used to attend UCSB though. I hope you are liking whichever UC you are at! I never even thought about cooking for Nina, how interesting!? What do people cook for their dogs?… 

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