Primanti Coleslaw

Tonight was veggie pickup, which meant a lot of time in the kitchen. Before I stopped at Inner Life Yoga to grab my goods, I joined Alex on the Rail Trail for a nice, early fall run. The weather was absolutely perfect! I could have done without the massive amount of bugs out this evening, but other than that, it was a great run. After I left the trail, I headed to town for my vegetables.

Every time I stop to get my veggies, I always feel inspired to start taking actual yoga classes, rather than just doing my usual routines at home. So after talking to a coworker, I looked into Suncrest Yoga, which is just four minutes from my house. They seem to have pretty good rates and they even offer hot yoga! I’ve never even thought about something like that before, but now that I know it’s available in my area, I’m definitely intrigued. Anyway, I’ve asked my friend to attend a few classes with me, so we’ll see what happens.

Ok, back to the food. Tonight, I decided to tackle a Pittsburgh favorite. Being in Morgantown, I  have the luxury of being only a short hour drive south of Pittsburgh, so trips north are Photo_071910_004becoming surprisingly frequent. One of my favorite things about Pittsburgh is how much everyone there loves their food. Whether it’s a local pizza joint or an old-world pierogie spot, Pittsburghers have their favorites. One indisputable favorite is the famous Primanti Brothers sandwich shop. If you aren’t familiar with this restaurant, just turn on any travel channel that features sandwich shows and you’re sure to spot this place on the top list. Anyway, the showstopper for me has always been their coleslaw. So I decided to make some with the giant head of cabbage I received. Here’s the recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound (about half of a medium-size head) green cabbage, shredded or finely chopped (about 6 cups)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Combine the cabbage, sugar, salt and celery seed in a colander set over a medium bowl. Let stand at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours; the cabbage will be wilted (about 4 cups total).

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Discard the draining liquid in the bowl; rinse and dry the bowl, then transfer the wilted cabbage to the bowl. Add the oil and vinegar; toss to coat. Season with pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.

(I’m currently in hour three waiting for my cabbage to wilt, so I’ll be sure to post a picture after it’s done.)

While I was finishing up with the rinsing process of the veggies, I got started on dinner. Tonight, I decided to use up some of my leftover leeks and potatoes from my soup last night.

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It turned out pretty well, but I did have to dump the broth and rinse the veggies. I’m the big dummy who didn’t realize putting cream in a crockpot would result in maximum gaggage. Curdled dairy! EW!! Anyway, I had a lot of stuff leftover, so I chopped it up and threw it in the skillet with some chicken sausage.

Delicious!

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As you can see, I wasn’t the only one who thought this dish seemed pretty delicious. Don’t worry; she didn’t get a single bite. She’s a sniff-only kind of cat.

Ok, well I’m off to finish the X Factor and dig into a few more chapters of The Night Circus. Have a great evening! Oh, but don’t think there isn’t a challenge tonight! Complete 2 sets of 1-minute planks and 25 hip raises.

Curried Chicken Salad

Last night was veggie pickup, which meant at least 30 minutes in the kitchen getting everything cleaned and ready for the week. Last night’s vegetables included celery, two striped squash things, two bell/wax pepper hybrid things, a bundle of leeks, a giant clove of garlic, and bagged salad mix. Thankfully, this stuff was pretty easy to clean up, unlike the dirty, excuse me, Earth-covered, potatoes. I make this distinction, because when I worked the NASA tent at the Boy Scout Jamboree in southern West Virginia this summer, someone I secretly dubbed “Cargo Shorts Guy” politely reprimanded me for complaining about being covered in dust and dirt. “But it’s part of the Earth! That’s a beautiful thing! Don’t complain about Earth’s gift!” Uh yeah, whenever I have clods of “Earth’s gift” up my nose, you’d better be prepared for my constant complaining. Stuff it, granola man.

Anyway, after I got the vegetables put away, I started preparing dinner. I knew I wanted something low maintenance, since I knew I’d be making PBFinger’s eggplant medallions tonight, so I went with a simple curried chicken salad. I pulled the recipe from Food Network, but ended up putting too much mayonnaise in. I decided it wasn’t my fault and pointed the finger of blame at Ina Garten. (I also blame her for turning my mother into a lemon-juice-drizzling machine.) The recipe was simplified thanks to my lack of ingredients, so it took even less time than anticipated. I topped it on a bed of greens and sliced up some red pepper for the side. Delicious. I decided I needed something else, so I chopped up one of the bell/wax pepper things and sautéed it with some fresh garlic. Growing up, we would always eat sautéed wax peppers on buttered Italian bread, so I decided to follow suit. All in all, a great dinner.

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Following dinner I engaged in some much needed cuddle time with Karen. She’s a cat that  will pin you to the couch if you let her on your lap, so after about 30 minutes, I had to wiggle out from underneath of her.

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I hopped on to the floor to do a relatively quick yoga routine. I’ve really been digging this 30-Day Yoga series on Youtube lately, so I picked out a “continual flow” routine and got started. The girl who does these videos is very likeable and doesn’t come across as an arrogant yogi. I also really love her living room! After I did this, I did a few ab-strengthening moves, yesterday’s challenge and hit the couch. I must have gotten a great workout, because for the first time in my life, I slept through my alarm. I had pillow marks ALL over my face when I woke up! 

Ok, I’m off for the day. Before we part, let me leave you with another challenge to tack on to last night’s. Tonight, complete 15 lunges on each leg and 20 squats.

Curried Chicken Salad

3 whole (6 split) chicken breasts, bone-in, skin-on (I used canned chicken)
Olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 cups good mayonnaise (recommended: Hellman’s)
1/3 cup dry white wine (I used white wine vinegar)
1/4 cup chutney (Omitted this!)
3 tablespoons curry powder
1 cup medium-diced celery (2 large stalks)
1/4 cup chopped scallions, white and green parts (2 scallions)
1/4 cup raisins
1 cup whole roasted, salted cashews

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Place the chicken breasts on a sheet pan and rub the skin with olive oil. Sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper. Roast for 35 to 40 minutes, until the chicken is just cooked. Set aside until cool enough to handle. Remove the meat from the bones, discard the skin, and dice the chicken into large bite-size pieces.

3. For the dressing, combine the mayonnaise, wine, chutney, curry powder, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Process until smooth.

4. Combine the chicken with enough dressing to moisten well. Add the celery, scallions, and raisins, and mix well. Refrigerate for a few hours to allow the flavors to blend. Add the cashews and serve at room temperature.
Credit: Ina Garten, Food Network

Chicken Sausage and Snickerdoodle Pancakes

Over the past few weeks, heck the past months, I’ve tried to sit down and share food, exercise and other healthy topics on Cat Hair. Time and time again, I’d find myself snapping a photo of food, or writing down a recipe, yet not doing anything with it. At first I thought, “Well, maybe I have some kind of bloggers block. Yeah, that’s got to be it.” Then I realized that I was actually just being kind of lazy. To my defense, I did have some cat drama involving food allergies and ear infections. That’s the stuff that pushes me to the limit. Deadlines, bills, utility issues don’t even get my feathers slightly ruffled, but if something is going on with my cats, LOOK OUT. To say I was a mess would be giving me too much credit. ANYWAY.

I guess I’ll start off with my current food obsession: chicken sausage. Now, I know a few short months ago, I was a dedicated vegetarian. I’m still mostly meatless, but lately, I’ve been venturing into meat territory. I’m not sure what changed, but I found myself craving it more and more until I snapped! I hopped on PBFingers blog and started paroozing her recipes, when I ran across a few meals she created using chicken sausage. I was intrigued and decided to give it a whirl. I headed to the store in search of this new-to-me item. Once I found what I was looking 2013-08-28 18.40.38for, I realized I had no idea how to serve it. My first try was pretty basic. I threw a few slices of it in the skillet with garlic and olive oil and then topped off a bowl of wheat pasta and marinara with it. My next stab at serving was involving another new-to-me item, the glorious leek. I received a bundle of leeks in my veggie delivery, courtesy of Round Right Farm, and decided to throw it in a skillet with the sausage to see what I got. This was much more successful! I added a cup of great northern beans and some green pepper to make the perfect little dinner for myself. Yum-o.

The next yummy dish I whipped up took place over my birthday weekend. I wanted to treat myself to something sweet for breakfast, but didn’t want to be terribly unhealthy. I knew I wanted something involving maple syrup, so I scooted on over to Chocolate Covered Katie and found a recipe for snickerdoodle pancakes! They weren’t fluffy like traditional pancakes, but they were very delicious and more than satisfied my craving. Perfect!

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Ok, that’s all I’ve got for now. I promise to try to make more of an effort to update, as I do anticipate lots of fall cooking coming up very soon. Enjoy the rest of your day!

Instead of a healthy tip, I’m going to share a workout challenge. Tonight, while you’re watching the premiere of The X Factor on Fox, complete 10 regular pushups (girl always welcome) and 10 downward dog pushups. If you aren’t sure about the latter, watch this video to learn how.