Being Productive

Today I had a little bit of a Do All The Things kind of day. Lately I’ve been feeling kind of  … uninspired by myself (that’s a nice way of saying that outside of work and running, I’ve been feeling lazy), so I decided to something with my Sunday.

Shortly after waking up, I got started making lunch – slow cooker chicken enchilada soup.

chicken enchilada soup chicken enchilada soup

Once that was slow cooking, I made myself breakfast – the same thing I’ve had for breakfast almost every morning for the past few months – oatmeal. I often get in a breakfast rut where I’ll go months eating the same exact thing. Right now, it is oatmeal with brown sugar, peanut butter, chopped walnuts and dried cranberries. In case you care. Which, if you’re a woman in your 20s-30s, the internet has led me to believe that you really care about my oatmeal.

oatmeal oatmeal

After I fed myself, I finally fed my cat. She needs to be reminded of the pecking order around here.

FEED ME

Recycled picture, but I can’t mention my cat on this blog without posting a picture. It’s one of the rules for being a Crazy Cat Lady. 

I waited around for breakfast to settle, then went for an 11-mile run. Which was harder than I thought it would be, but I blame all the extra energy I exerted trying not to faceplant on the icy patches.

By the time I got home and took a shower, the soup was ready. #Winning

chicken enchilada soup chicken enchilada soup

Paired with A Little Sumpin’ Sumpin’, an American Pale Wheat Ale from Lagunitas. Not because I was trying to do some fancy food and beer pairing, but because it’s what I had chilling in the garage. 

The enchilada soup was good. (But isn’t everything after 11 miles? I ate another bowl later on, and yup, good.)

But you know I didn’t eat just soup after running 11 miles:

beef sandwich

My mom made Italian beef for sandwiches yesterday. I think all she did was brown a beef roast and stick it in the slow cooker with a jar of giardiniera. Maybe she added water to it, I have no idea. Once the meat was done cooking, she removed it, shredded it, and stuck it back in the slow cooker. Delicious.

But the productivity didn’t end there … I decided to bake. I had the urge to make bread (because we have a KitchenAid and therefore it’s pretty easy), but we were not in need of regular bread. So I made soft pretzels instead. Including a couple “pretzel buns” for sandwiches.

homemade soft pretzels homemade soft pretzels

Pulling these out of the oven made me feel like the most amazing cook ever. (Yes, making carnival food makes me feel amazing.) I kept these plain, but next time I might get creative with various sweet and savory toppings. Also, side note,  you can still use yeast that you found in your fridge that expired over two years ago.

Have you come across any good slow cooker recipes lately? Any good bread recipes? What should I top the pretzels with if I make them again? 

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19 Comments on “Being Productive”

  1. Wow what a great day!! I keep seeing homemade pretzels on Pinterest and want to make them, they look yummy! I have also been wanting to try that Lagunitas Sumpin Sumpin, purely because of the name, lol!

  2. Mmmmm…. *I* care about your current oatmeal penchant. And I never thought to put peanut butter in there, so I’ll be experimenting this week!

    One of my favorite crock pot recipes is here: http://www.familycrockpotrecipes.com/InaHurryLasagnaCrockPotRecipe.html — I made this the first time a few years ago for an office pot luck lunch, and it scored rave reviews. Two notes: 1 — I only cook the pasta to an al dente level (1-2 minutes shorter) as it tends to get too soft in the slow cooker otherwise. 2 — I cut the cottage cheese in half to 8 oz and substitute the other 8 oz with ricotta. Not even close to a healthy meal choice with the egg noodles and cheese, but one of the most delicious slow cooker meals I’ve ever enjoyed. 🙂

    Way to be productive today!!

    1. I never thought to put peanut butter in there until recently. Lindsey – http://runningthewindycity.com/ – used to post a lot of her oatmeal and oats in a jar combos, and always included nut butters. And it took my oatmeal from good to awesome, haha.

      Also, I really don’t care if recipes are “healthy.” I’m all about taste. I can adjust with smaller portion sizes … or just run more.

  3. Oh my goodness. Those pretzels look heavenly! I’d top them with salt, or cinnamon & sugar and then there is the dipping sauce: cheddar cheese, cream cheese, marinara…the list is endless! 🙂

  4. I was crazy in the kitchen yesterday, too! Made some weird cross between chili and stew… cornbread… prepped for baking tonight…

    And had oatmeal for breakfast. First time in a few weeks, actually. I’m in an egg white omelet rut over here. Same levels of excitement as your oatmeal. :p

  5. Both of those recipes look divine! I am a HUGE fan of the Crockpot. There is no better way to be productive than to have something sitting on the countertop cooking while you are doing everything else you need to do. Yay for your 11-mile run! You must be getting very excited about the F^3 Half coming up soon!

    1. I was looking forward to the race, but after Sunday’s 11 miler felt tougher than I thought it would, I’m getting a little worried. I just hope race day isn’t icy.

  6. You made pretzels? That’s awesome! I’ve been wanting to make them for a long time, but they just seem like so much work. Even though I have a Kitchen Aid, and regularly make bread and pizza crusts from scratch. I love a salty pretzel dipped in a nice beer cheese sauce (there has to be a recipe for that somewhere on Pinterest too, right? Maybe adapt a beer cheese soup?)

    And I’ll share my favorite oatmeal-with-peanut-butter combo – peanut butter and banana, with a little honey and a dash of cinnamon. It’s so yummy, and pretty filling for a pre-workout breakfast.

  7. 1- A little sumpin sumpin is SO delicious. 2 – i totally care about oatmeal, with all my heart. 3- I am glad your ability to use giardiniera is so much less destructive than my own. 4- How hard is it to make those pretzels? I am coming off a baking dough-saster (ha! I’m so witty) and need a confidence booster.

    1. The pretzels were pretty easy. As long as you follow the directions. I forgot a step after I already put them in the over (brush with an egg/water mixture and sprinkle with salt) but I was able to remove them, do that, and then cook for the rest of the time and they turned out fine.

  8. Oh my gosh I’ve been dying to make my own homemade pretzels! Ever since seeing those pretzel sticks at a restaurant last week, I can’t get them out of my mind. I say make a cheese sauce and dip away 🙂 Also, I definitely care about oatmeal always and forever!

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