Jocalation

Jocalation = Jocalat Imitation. Very clever. Ha. Anyway, I’ve wanted to try making my own Larabars for a while, because I don’t like the nuts in them, and I was hoping to be able to leave them out… though then I’d essentially be left with mashed dates! So I compromised and used Emerald Cocoa Roast Almonds (the only almonds I don’t dislike) to try and make a Jocalat bar instead.

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These are the (very very very overpriced!!) dates that I used. Note the
utter genius at work here: contains pits. Fun. Anyway, I put two (pitted!) dates into my mini food chopper, which didn’t like that idea too much. I wound up chopping the dates by hand, and just grinding the almonds. As it turns out, one bag of almonds was too much for two dates, so I added another two dates, and I didn’t even bother chopping those — I just used my hands to incorporate them with the almonds, and that seemed to work just fine.

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I wanted to make one bar, but since I had too many almonds, it turned into two… after refrigerating it overnight, wrapped in plastic wrap, I cut it in half.

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It didn’t exactly taste like a Jocalat… for one thing, my (completely unscientific) proportions were off.  I think one additional date, plus some elbow grease, would have sufficed.  As it was, it was extremely sticky!  And I’d also add some unsweetened cocoa powder next time, because the chocolate flavor kind of got swallowed by the sweetness of the dates.  However, it wasn’t an abysmal failure, so… yay?

A few bits of edible randomness… naturally.

Since the berry season is over, I have to make do…

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…with sugar-free seedless raspberry preserves.

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All stirred up with Kashi Honey Sunshine and vanilla yogurt… it was fine, but I really do prefer fresh berries!!

And in another burst of creativity (ha ha ha, coming from one of the least creative people on the planet), I whipped up some double chocolate pancakes, using whole wheat pancake mix, Splenda, unsweetened cocoa powder, and sugar-free chocolate chips.

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In the microwave, of course.  Then I figured that I might as well just go for triple chocolate, and topped it with sugar-free chocolate syrup.

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You may or may not notice some disparity in the picture quality in this post… that would be because some pictures were taken with my brother’s camera, and some were taken with mine, which appears to be working.  I had gotten so used to his camera, though, which does take better pictures, that I was considering buying a new one anyway.  Not right away, because I’ve been spending too much money lately, but maybe in a few months.  And then I was going to get a waterproof casing for the camera I have now so that I can take it diving with me.  But.  Canon makes casings for almost all of their cameras, and they are waterproof up to 130 feet.  There are only three or four cameras which only have casings that are waterproof up to 9.8 feet.  (What?)  The PowerShot SD300 is one of those.  Guess which type of camera I have.

Now that that’s established, this picture is just to prove that when I say I’m addicted to something, I mean it:

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Do you think I have enough sauteed eggplant?! In my defense, they were on major sale, and they’ll be long gone before the expiration date rolls around. In fact, I think I ought to go buy some more. :p

And speaking of buying things, I was in dire need of a new insulated lunch bag.  (Why are they called “lunch” bags?!  I know they’re most likely to be used for that, but still.)  Apparently it isn’t the season to be buying that, because I had a very difficult time tracking one down!  But I finally did unearth this little treasure:

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It folds up into this little neat package!  Isn’t that cool?  (Yes, I am very easily amused.  I never denied it.)

Far too much time yesterday was devoted to stressing out over grains… I knew I wanted wheat berries, but they just take too long to cook, and so I was pondering the other grains I have at home… I kept vacillating between (quick-cooking) barley, quinoa, bulgur, and millet. It’s incredibly stupid to spend so much time on making such a decision, but I guess that’s what happens to indecisive morons like me! In the end, I went with the bulgur. If you had seen the expiration date on that box, you probably would have fainted… but I figured if it turned out to be bad, I could always trash it and start over with something else. It was fine. Actually, it was more than fine; I haven’t had bulgur in a couple of years, and I don’t know why — it’s good! (It tastes pretty similar to kasha, which I’ve always liked… except that it’s less of a pain to cook.)

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With garlic salt and Birdseye Steamfresh Italian Blend vegetables.

On to some Verbal Vomit… I finally got through to my endocrinologist (he said, “We must stop meeting like this!”), and to make a long story short, it’s not very likely that my skeleton will crumble to dust because of this. Which makes me glad, because my sister (who takes this medication) told me that the only difference she noticed after she started it was that she had a lot more energy. Isn’t that all I ever wanted?! I am actually struggling mightily against the urge to read everything I can get my hands (cursor?) on re: this medication, because I know that I’m going to “accidentally” find a whole slew of people who claim that it made them gain weight… which will convince me that I will, too, and I don’t need any additional paranoia, thank you very much.

Words cannot even begin to describe how freezing cold I was all day today. There are very few things that make me feel completely, inhumanly miserable; being insanely cold is one of them. I could hardly get any work done because if I wasn’t huddled over my little space heater, even my internal organs were encased in ice.  Look, it’s 65 degrees outside.  If it was 65 degrees in your house, you’d turn on the heat.  So why is the air conditioning going full-blast?!

Another mini-rant (well, okay, two): I still have so much work to do.  I’ve hardly done any of it.  I must have some sort of death wish.  And Sunday night / Monday is Yom Kippur.  Holiest day of the year or not, it is my least favorite day of the year.  Oh, don’t get me wrong, the fasting part doesn’t bother me (duh)… it’s the “sit-in-shul-and-pray-all-day” aspect of it that I can’t stand.  I am ADD when it comes to such things.  Even when I was a little kid, my teachers always complained to my parents that I did not stay in my seat.  I just can’t sit still for so many endless hours!!  From the moment it ends, I am dreading next year’s Yom Kippur… and somehow, I have a sneaking suspicion that this is the totally wrong attitude with which to approach it.  Hmm.

Either way, I really do need to get something useful done, and soon.  Agh.

Have a beautiful weekend!

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12 responses to “Jocalation

  1. I am so impressed by those dates…they look so yummy! Thanks for the pancake recipe! Looks great!

  2. those triple chocolate pancake were really tempting.. Thank you for the recipes 🙂

  3. I’ve got to try that eggplant!
    I am not look forward to Yom Kippur either. Or break fast…I always end up overdoing it!

  4. im effing licking my screen right now. you killed it. so delish. well done girl. now bring some over to my apt.

  5. laurasworthlesswords

    Your larabar bars looked good, those sort of things are always hit and miss until you get the ratios right. Theres quite a few recipes on the net for them though.

    Glad to hear you got through to your endocrinologist, Im like you I`ll go and research all about something before taking it and that just is not a good idea, resist the urge. You`ll go into info overload and there will always be someone who says it has a side effect that you dont want. Just follow your doctor and your sisters advice.

    I understand how this holy day really gets to you, sorry I’ve never heard of it so I dont really know much about it but sitting all day would really bug me to. I guess the only thing you can do is remind yourself its just one day in the year.
    Have a good weekend anyhow, xox

  6. Medication that makes your thyroid speed up is about as likely to make you gain weight as living off of celery would be 😛 Ah, I wish I could find something similar to that sauteed eggplant in the supermarkets over here, I love eggplant! Although it’s aubergine in the UK. Your pancakes look good, it’s a good job I only just had breakfast or I might eat my laptop 😛

  7. i’m not religious but i can totally sympathize with sitting one place for too long. i just can’t do it, which i always thought was weird because i’m pretty lazy and like to sleep a lot. lol. but when i’m awake i need to be fidgeting around. and it’s only gotten worse as i have gotten older 😦 i want to try some larabar imitations, but not sure what yet.

  8. Oh yes, I relate to the ADD/not sitting still issue. My concentration skills (lack of) and need to flit between sets of multitasking (because doing two things at once just ain’t enough!) are legendary. At least you don’t start laughing hysterically or crying like a moron during periods of sitting and boredom…I think I burned a hole in the carpet at Uni this week tapping my foot and twizzling it round repeatedly.

    Beautiful food as always ~ I’m particularly impressed by the pancakes 🙂

    Katie is spot on ~ no way will that kind of medication cause weight gain…I think you mentioned that your nutritionist was against it on the grounds of it promoting weight loss!?

    You’re more than focused and bright enough to conquer your work mountain! At the risk of sounding like a motivational guru: you CAN do it…my empathy levels are high here as I should be working myself…commenting>defining cultural history any day 😉

  9. So impressed by your cooking and creations! I’ve been working on getting brave enough to just try a few new things! You are an inspiration!

    Sending you relaxing thoughts 🙂

  10. Those cookies look delicious! And I love Birdseye Steamfresh blends. I’ve tried many different varieties and have liked all of them!

  11. So much goodness! I can’t wait to make my own Larabars. And those cookies!

    GREAT news with the endocrinologist. No crumbly skeleton for you!

  12. please email me at telltalemikey@yahoo.com when you get a chance 🙂

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