Apparently, some of you have made resolutions for the new year. I don’t approve, but I’ll play along.
I’ve gone on for quite a while about how I believe in healthy balance and moderation all year long, and I find January 1st to be quite arbitrary a date to start getting healthy. But hey, who am I to discourage people from being healthier? After all, I’m a fitness junkie. I do barre workouts with religious zeal and fuel up with protein afterward. And this is one of my favorite ways to do it.
Three ingredients: peanut butter, tofu and powdered sugar. Blend. Chill. I’m done! Now can we start talking about the barre again?
Two years ago, I joined the cult of the barre via Physique 57, a super-ritzy program that is nothing short of addictive. If you don’t believe me, head to my basement. You’ll find a healthy assortment of free weights, a so-called “playground ball” that I squeeze between my thighs as I squat and cry, and an actual barre. Yep. I own a barre. Kenny makes endless fun of me for my barre, but I betcha he can’t stand up on the ball of one foot while lifting the other leg in the air and pulsing it endlessly and not falling over.
Last week, Physique 57 was offering a free trial week of their online streaming workouts, so of course, I signed up. I spent my free week grunting and stretching out sore muscles, which is my idea of a good time. But then, my free week ended. And I can’t quite bring myself to pay the $57 monthly fee to online stream the workouts, so I’m back to the land of the DVD. Why does it cost so much? Why, P57?
In the meantime, Kenny has taken up P90X, and his monthly streaming bills are a lot cheaper, so he gets to build his six-pack without guilt. I’m jealous, but not enough to ever leave the barre. Try it sometime! The DVDs are a lot more economically sound than the streaming. But you can stream my videos for free. See?
I’m on YouTube as Just About Baked. Go ahead and subscribe! But don’t be like me. I accidentally hit the “dislike” button on a video I made.
After my long workout (they can go anywhere from 60 to 90 minutes, depending on the barre DVD I’m using any given day), I need protein. Quickly. Because if you have protein within an hour of strength training, those long and lean muscles can pop out even more!
This pudding is almost pure protein, minus the sugar. It’s made of silken tofu, which liquefies very easily, along with creamy peanut butter and the aforementioned powdered sugar. You pulse those three simple ingredients for less than a minute, and there you have it. Well, after the chilling. The pudding must be chilled.
I’m not gonna lie here; you can taste a trace of tofu in this, but if you like the taste of tofu (which isn’t exactly a taste anyway), it works fine. And the peanut butter is a strong enough flavor to be the main focus. Plus, adding garnish makes the experience more fun. I added chocolate chips in the video above, but you can do whatever. Chopped peanuts, a cocoa powder dusting, or for decadence, chopped peanut butter cups or peanut butter chips. Anything will work!
Make the resolutions you want, and be happy. Just be sure that you already love who you are, and that you aim for balance and not deprivation. I might log in a lot of barre time, but that gives me the strength to get through the day and bake brownies, too. And that’s a goal worth striving for!
I fulfill many roles in life: wife, mother, teacher, everlasting learner.
This site is dedicated to one role that expresses my creativity in ways that I find consistently challenging and rewarding: baker.
Inventing new ways to enhance food, especially if that food involves chocolate or peanut butter (or both!), is a passion of mine. I look forward to sharing my ideas with you.
You may have noticed (or not, it’s cool) that I haven’t posted that many banana bread recipes on this site. Ready for my shameful secret? Please don’t hate me.
Cue stage whisper: I’m not that into banana.
Don’t go screaming now. I can’t handle that. It’s not that I hate it or anything, but in the world of baked goods, anything with banana ranks low. So take it as a sign of how much I love you all that from time to time, I produce a banana-based dessert. That is some selflessness. Of course, I did add a wee bit of peanut butter (and peanut butter chips, too) to make this more of a Mir-style dessert. And there’s strawberry jelly in there. You know, because this is totally healthy. Uh huh.
Today is my first day back at work. Ah, the good ol’ grind. A week from today, my now empty classroom will be full of sleepy teenagers wondering what in the heck happened to their freedom. I will be annoyingly perky and they will hate me. Heh heh heh.
This is year 15 for me as a teacher, and every year, I love it just a little bit more. Teaching is unpredictable and active and just so much fun. I laugh a lot at work. But then, I find people funny. Kids especially. I know that my own kids get really mad when they think I’m laughing at them (i.e., all the time), so I will do a better job of hiding my smiles at work. Maybe.
To make my esteemed colleagues feel a bit better about returning, I’ve made some treats. One of my teacher buddies can’t have gluten, and guess what? She’s been teaching for over 35 years. So I think she deserves these bars!
Y’all, going to be honest here. The cooling temps are not welcome in my world.
I mean, it’s too sudden. We’re at 90 one day and then 60 the next. I cannot. Has Mother Nature ever heard of transitions? And by the way, could she just stop with the hurricanes already?
Since I don’t want to spend today talking about the weather, I’ll talk about something far more relevant instead. My blog’s been around for going on three years now, but I’ve never made black bottom cupcakes. Once this occurred to me (in the middle of the night, mind you, and it woke me up), I had to correct that immediately. I also had to make them gluten-free, just to make up for the oversight of never putting a chocolate cupcake stuffed with chocolate chip cheesecake filling onto this site.