What Robin Eats

"A Strong Body Equals a Healthy Mind."


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Baby Plotnik in Portland

Portland may be one of the only places where we weren’t ready to come home after three full days. From the scenery, the food, the people, and everything in between, I can confidently say for the both of us that we instantly fell in love with Portland.

If I can choose walking over any other transportation I will. Being 30 weeks pregnant on our trip that didn’t stop us from walking over 20,000 steps the first day and not too much lower the next two days. Portland has a lot to see and I didn’t want to miss out by being in a car!

Here’s a lowdown of how we spent our three days BabyMooning in Portland:

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From the airport we went straight to our hotel to change before heading out for breakfast. We stayed at the Ace Hotel Portland and we could not have been more happy. The vibe was so cool and I highly recommend staying there. Or at least in that area because we were walking distance to so many sights and food. For breakfast we went to Pine State Biscuits where all my biscuit dreams came true. I went for the class biscuit, sausage, and egg combo while Joel went all out with a biscuits and mushroom gravy. Was the perfect start to our Portland eating adventure!

We then walked north to Good Coffee to hangout before walking east on Hawthorn Blvd to House of Vintage, Crossroads, Jackpot Records, and other fun shops. We then stumbled upon Laurelhurst Park and sat there for about an hour eating some snacks we picked up from a local grocery store. From there we too an uber to Eb & Bean Frozen Yogurt.  I ordered the Salty Pistachio & Mexican Chocolate (both dairy free) topped with crumbled vegan waffle cone. Holy no-cow that was good!

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We ventured back to the hotel for a quick rest before walking to Powells Books. Really surprised we didn’t get lost in the store because it’s HUGE. We found our way to the children’s section and bought Baby Plotnik a Dr. Seuss book as a souvenir. We were there to celebrate her after all! After wandering Powells we worked up an appetite and walked  to Dicks Kitchen. Dicks Kitchen is a paleo dream come true. We aren’t Paleo but we can definitely appreciate a delicious grass-fed burger. I ordered the Thai Burger Bowl, Joel got the Zizou Burger (with a margarita on the side), and we split an order of sweet potato fries. I’d walk 30 minutes for this burger bowl multiple times! We popped into Whole Foods after dinner for a night-cap, aka a Gingerade Kombucha to split at the hotel.

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We woke up ready to take on another day of eating. We have Blue Star Donuts in LA but since it came so highly recommended we had to make a stop! We split the Raspberry Old Fashion donut and regretted not getting our own five minutes later. Blue Star Donuts went way beyond our expectations. We live dangerously close to the one in LA and I know we’ll become frequent customers. After our donut we went to Heart Roasters to grab some much needed caffeine. I went full caff on this one and got their homemade macadamia almond milk latte. Usually I don’t notice a difference in homemade milks and store-bought but this one you could totally tell! The latte was creamy and absolutely perfect.

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From there we walked to Waterfront Park enjoying the water and finally found Mills End Park, aka the worlds smallest park. You really can blink and miss this in the middle of the street. As silly as it seems, I’m so glad we stopped for a photo because it makes me giggle every time I see it! It’s worth the stop if you have a spare second. We walked back inland to Pioneer Square where there were multiple food trucks lined up. I saw a bright yellow truck named “Fried Egg I’m in Love” and knew we had to eat there. I ordered the “Smells Like Protein Spirit” with veggie sausage and Joel got the Sriracha Mix-A-Lot. They have a special hot sauce that set Joel’s mouth on fire! That’s saying a lot coming from a man who loves everything spicy. They have a few trucks around Portland so stay on the lookout!

 

We made a pitstop at a random Stumptown Coffee for a decaf coffee before relaxing at Ira Keller Fountain Park and a photo opportunity at the White Stag Sign. The White Stag Sign was difficult for us to locate because we were under the bridge! The security guards we saw were super helpful and directed us to the top of the bridge. Was a bit difficult to get a photo because there was so much traffic but we got it!

Since my husband is a video game lover (secretly me too but don’t tell anyone 😉) we headed to Ground Kontrol, a classic Arcade that serves alcohol and food. Plus it’s attached to a music venue and you might like to see someone who’s playing! After gaming our hearts out we walked to another one of Joel’s favorite things, cookie dough. Portland has a Cookie Dough Cafe and all their cookie dough is egg free making it safe for all to consumer, especially this mama-to-be! I got the Vegan Brownie while Joel got the classic Chocolate Chip. We tried about 20 samples each so one scoop each was all we needed!

After some downtown at the hotel we felt ready for dinner. One thing I’ve craved my entire pregnancy is pizza. I could have pizza everyday, for every meal, and be completely satisfied. We could see Sizzle Pie from our hotel room and we could not wait to check it out. Sizzle Pie filled my high school soul with heavy metal music and food puns for pizza names. I ordered the “Cops and Robbers” vegan slice and the “Rabbit” salad with vegan ranch while Joel ordered the “Mad Men” meat slice, the “Bandit” veggie slice, and the “Caligula” salad with vegan caesar dressing. The crust was thin, just how I like it, and the salad was fresh. Highly recommend Sizzle Pie if you’re a pizza lover! After pizza we went to Clyde Common (adjacent to the Ace Hotel) and enjoyed the rest of the evening with my sweet husband. He got a fancy whiskey drink while I filled up on sparkling water. Kind of wished we were still hungry because their food looked incredible!

Day 3:

Our last day was bittersweet. We had another full day planned but not before taking photos in the photo booth at the Ace Hotel. I’m a sucker for photo booths and this is such a nice memory to have! We grabbed some coffee and a piece of banana bread with cream cheese from the Stumptown connected to our hotel before we were off to breakfast!

We took an Uber over to the Tin Shed to enjoy a hearty breakfast. I ordered a few sides: a toasted english muffin, two over hard eggs, and chicken sausage and Joel ordered “The Stay”- potato cakes with sweet potato hash, collard greens, scrambled eggs, and a rosemary mushroom gravy. The Tin Shed is very dog friendly, they even have options for dogs on the menu! We had plenty of time to spare after breakfast so we walked about 45 minutes to Coco Donuts to enjoy a Carrot Cake Donut with a donut crumb topping and Joel ordered a Raspberry tea to sip on.

After charging our phones we walked around Mississippi Ave. up to Mississippi Records then all the way to Swift and Union for Joel to enjoy a cocktail. Their food looked amazing but we had our hearts set on Cultured Caveman for an early dinner. The atmosphere was casual but the food was 5 star. Cultured Caveman is Portland’s first paleo-friendly restaurant and I’d go paleo if I could eat here everyday. I ordered the lamb Shepard’s Pie with a cabbage jicama coleslaw and Joel ordered the pork carnitas on coconut flour tortillas with a side of bone broth soup. We ended up splitting both meals because we were each bragging about how amazing our meals were. Really wished we had time to go back again because the coconut chicken tenders were calling my name. We made one last stop for a breath of nature at a park nearby before heading to the airport. Portland really surprised me with how many flowers were throughout the city! My heart had never been so happy being surrounded by nature and city life.

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Portland was good to us and we will definitely be back, but next time with Baby Plotnik in our arms instead of my belly. #WhatRobinEatsForTwo #BabyPlotnikInPortland

 


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Eggplant Lasagna

Woke up on cloud nine this morning because Joel said this was the best lasagna he’s ever had. Not sure what could make me more happy! 😇✨🙇🏻‍♂️

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I’m a huge fan of leftovers. Especially when it’s Eggplant Lasagna layered with eggplant, ricotta cheese, cottage cheese, marinara sauce, fresh basil, and lean beef. Most likely going to have this for second breakfast. 🤤🙏🏻🥫

I’m headed downtown for a maternity belt shoot before leg day this afternoon. Feeling so thankful for everyone’s sweet words over the last three weeks with my back pain. All the happy feels, cheers! 🤰🏻

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lean ground beef (can leave out for a vegetarian version or add a meat substitute)
  • 1 1/2 cup marinara sauce (I used the fat free version from Trader Joe’s)
  • Handful fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large eggplant, cut lengthwise into about 6-8 large slices
  • 1/2 cup part skim ricotta (dairy or nondairy)
  • 1/2 cup nonfat cottage cheese (can sub for more dairy or nondairy ricotta cheese)
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons parmesan cheese (I used a dairy free version)
  • 1/2 cup almond mozzarella cheese shreds (I get mine from Trader Joe’s) 

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Cook lean ground beef on a skillet. Break up the beef and cook for 5-8 minutes or until the beef is no longer pink.
  3. Next add marinara sauce, basil, and dried oregano. Stir until well combined then turn heat to a simmer.
  4. Place sliced eggplant on large baking sheet coated with nonstick cooking spray. Sprinkle with salt and roast in the oven for 10-15 minutes to help dry out the eggplant. After eggplant is done cooking, remove it’s skin.
  5. In a medium size bowl, mix together the ricotta, cottage cheese (or more ricotta), parmesan, and egg until well combined. Once eggplant is done cooking, remove the beef meat sauce from the heat and add 1/2 cup of meat sauce to the ricotta mixture.
  6. To assemble lasagna, spread 1/2 of the beef meat sauce into the bottom of a 9×9 inch baking pan coated with nonstick cooking spray. Place half of eggplant slices evenly over meat sauce, spread on 1/2 of the ricotta mixture, then sprinkle some almond mozzarella on top. Repeat layers again until all ingredients are used. Cover with foil and bake for 40 min. Remove foil and broil for 5-10 minutes or until cheese is bubbly on top. Makes about six servings depending on how hungry you are. 🤤


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Sweet Potato Mac n No Cheese

Easy, breezy, and sweet potato cheesy. 🤤🍠🧀

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Monday brought to you by two glorious bowls of vegan mac and cheese. Cheese sauce made with sweet potatoes (no cashews!), nutritional yeast, Ripple Foods unsweetened original, and spices. Acceptable for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. 😉✨🍴

Sweet Potato “Cheese” Sauce:

  • 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes
  • 1/2 cup Ripple Foods unsweetened original
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • Dash of sea salt

Directions:

  • Combine all ingredients in a food processor or a high speed blender.
  • Blend until smooth and top your favorite pasta, zoodles, or use as a dipping sauce! Enjoy!


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Gut Healthy Pho

Let’s get personal, gut personal. 😅🙈👩🏻‍🔬 #sponsored

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There’s a few things I want to start focusing more on in 2018, one being my gut health! In addition to gut healthy foods, like this warming Pho above, there are other ways to improve my gut health. With uBiome SmartGut, I am able to gain valuable insights to better understand what’s going on inside my gut, to then take steps to feeling better. Using precision sequencing technology, SmartGut identifies microbes in the gut that could be health affecting. ☺️🙏🏻🍲
SmartGut is easy-to-use and helps you learn more about any gut conditions. Can’t wait to get my results back to start making steps towards a healthier gut. Follow the link, http://bit.ly/RPLOTNIKSG to get your gut on a healthy track. 🙌🏻🍹
Pho recipe below! Your gut will thank you. 👩🏻‍🍳🥄

Ingredients: (Makes two)

  • 1 box Trader Joe’s carrot spirals
  • 1 16oz. jar Brothee Wild Mushroom Broth
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce of choice
  • 2 diced jalapeños
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1 lime
  • Mint leave
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Black pepper to taste

Directions:

  • Place carrot spirals, Brothee, water, and hot sauce in a large pot on medium/high heat. Once the liquid begins to boil, reduce to a simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
  • Add spices, jalapeños, red onion, and juice of one lime. Let simmer for another 5 minutes.
  • Divide evenly into two bowls, top with fresh mint leaves, and green onion. Enjoy!


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Sammie Smackdown – When Pigs Fly

Life is like a sandwich, you have to fill it with the best ingredients.”

Sandwiches! I’ve yet to meet someone that doesn’t love a sandwich. There’s something comforting about two pieces of bread (toasted preferably) filled with goodies. Sandwiches are lovable for multiple reasons; convenience, versatility, comfort, mess-free (exception of the drippy-egg), and endless combinations. This is why I literally ran to the kitchen after Canyon Gluten-Free Bakehouse asked me to create an epic sandwich for their Sammie Smackdown competition. The opportunity to put my “Strange but Good” kitchen skills to the test could not be missed!

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The Canyon Bakehouse Sammie Smackdown campaign is more than mouthwatering sandwiches. The Sammie Smackdown allows four gluten-free bloggers like myself to create their tastiest sandwich ever to compete for fan votes! The blogger with the winning sandwich will receive a $10,000 donation to their charity of choice. In choosing a charity, I wanted it to pertain to my life.

Growing up I competed in scholarship pageants. Enhancing my social skills onstage and in interviews, personal growth, becoming involved in my community, and being awarded educational funding were just a few of the many aspects of scholarship pageants. The Council for Youth Empowerment (CYE) believes that young people are our greatest natural resource and that their education and commitment to service is the cornerstone of a strong and successful nation. With a mission to promote family and community, the Council for Youth Empowerment is continually striving for a brighter future and is well deserving of the $10,000 donation.

Throughout my pageant years I adapted a healthy lifestyle, learning that a strong body equals a healthy mind. With a pageant title comes the responsibility to encourage others to live a healthy lifestyle trough fitness and nutrition. Thus sparked my interest for all things food and how to enjoy my favorite foods while living a healthy lifestyle. What Robin Eats has grown to be more than a fun hashtag to post under my food photos. What Robin Eats has become a platform to encourage everyone that eating healthy does not have to be boring! I am not sure that I would of discovered my passion for a healthy lifestyle if it weren’t for pageants.

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I wanted to create a sandwich that would catch your eye and be drool worthy. Stacked with mouthwatering ingredients like BBQ pulled pork, kale pesto hummus, sprouts, tomato, and topped with an egg in a hole bread piece, the “Flying Piggy Pesto” would stop anyone in their tracks! Now this is where you all come in, head over to https://canyonglutenfree.com/bread/sammie-smackdown and vote for the “Flying Piggy Pesto”. CYE awards over $30,000 in scholarships annually and it would be an honor to win the Sammie Smackdown. Your vote brings me one step closer to winning $10,000 for the Council for Youth Empowerment. 

*UPDATE* Thank you everyone who voted! My “Flying Piggy Pesto” won the Sammie Smackdown. Could’t have done this without all of you. Hugs to everyone. 🙂 

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Avocado with a Crunch

Avocado Chicken and “Cream Cheese” Egg Rolls

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Hopefully everyone is out of their Super Bowl food coma because these Avocado Chicken and “Cream Cheese” egg rolls need to be made asap!

These barely lasted two days in our home!

I knew I should of hid these from my husband. 😉

Ingredients: (Makes 8, Calories 222, Carbs 24g, Protein 10g, Fat 9g)

  • 8 egg roll wrappers
  • 1/4 cup Kite Hill Almond Cream Cheese Spread (or light cream cheese)
  • 6 ounces cooked and diced chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup diced sweet onion
  • 3 medium avocados
  • 1/4 cup green onion
  • Pepper and Salt
  • 2 Limes, Juiced

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  • Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, spray with non-stick cooking spray, and set aside.
  • Mash Avocados in a medium size bowl. Mix in diced onion, sun-dried tomatoes, green onion, salt, pepper, and lime juice to taste, set aside.
  • Combine cooked and diced chicken with Almond Cream Cheese in a small bowl.
  • Fill egg rolls.
  • Start with a corner facing you, and add about 1/4 cup of filling to the center of the wrapper.
  • Fold the corner facing you over the filling, tuck in the sides, and finish rolling.
  • Place the rolls on the baking sheet.
  • When finished, spray the rolls with cooking spray.
  • Bake for about 20 minutes until they are golden brown, flipping them halfway through.
  • I served these bad boys with Coconut Aminos. Enjoy!


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A Very Orange Friday

Carrot and Sweet Potato Soup

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Started the day at Orange Theory fitness and ending with this Carrot and Sweet Potato soup. Maybe orange is my color after all. 😉

Also, using a crockpot makes me feel so adult… Never in my life had I dreamt about putting food into a cooker and so many hours later the food being ready to eat. Now I want everything and everything crockpot approved. #adulting

Ingredients: (Serves 5, Calories 98 per 1 cup, Carbs 19g, Protein 4g, Fat 1g)

  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled, and chopped
  • 4 cups chopped carrots
  • 1 cup chopped sweet onion
  • 2 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 cup The New Barn unsweetened almond milk

Directions:

  • Place all ingredients, excluding almond milk, into a crockpot and cook for 6 hours.
  • Once done cooking, add almond milk and blend with an immersion blender.
  • Top with ricotta cheese (almond ricotta VERY recommended.)

Cheers!