Greek salad couscous.

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I know. I know. It’s been like, three weeks since I last posted. I was away for a week, then I was simultaneously busy and lazy for another week, and now… I’m getting back on track.

I believe I’ve mentioned before that at my old job, I was spoiled by our cafeteria. It was staffed by two very sweet women and one very nice dude, who just so happened to have been trained at the Culinary Institute of America (and shared some recipes with me, which was awesome). There were fresh soups and salads every day, with “deli” sandwich specials and hot meal specials, and everything was delicious, all the time.  This iteration of Greek salad was featured pretty often, sometimes with chickpeas and other times with Israeli couscous. I always made room on my plate for a little scoop of it. I finally got around to buying a canister of Israeli couscous a few weeks ago, and made my own version of it. You should make it too, especially if you have an olive thing. I…have an olive thing. I’m not proud of this, but I ate a whole can of pitted green olives this weekend. I keep buying them with recipe-related intentions, and then I just scarf them all down and wonder how I got here.

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Summer saute

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Ok guys. So it’s clear that I really, really love food. Not only do I (semi-regularly) write a food blog, but I’ve also been known to take it into some weird territory by writing love letters to pot pies and what not. I’ll be the first one to push any dish that features gobs of cheese or crispy bacon, but this – this healthy, vegetarian, cheese-free (ok, I caved and added cheese last night) meal – might be my new favorite dinner. I’ve made it the past two nights, and I don’t really see myself wanting anything else in the near future. I get like this with music, too – when I really, really like a song, I listen to it about five dozen times in a row. I’m not (too) ashamed to admit that, currently, all I really want to listen to “Blurred Lines.” I’ve been in this place for about a month and a half. You’d think I’d be ready to stop, but … no.

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A quinoa salad and a giveaway! Don’t worry. It’s not quinoa.

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I’m not really “ashamed” to admit a lot of things. Like, I’m not ashamed to admit that I have Smashmouth’s Astro Lounge in my car. Or that I am currently sitting in my kitchen by myself, bouncing around, listening to this on repeat. Or that I’ve been rabidly obsessed with the Jodi Arias trial, and have texted my best friend about it practically every single day for the past four months. Or that I am so terrible (or awesome; the jury’s still out) at being an adult that I do things like eat hot cheese for dinner. I unabashedly communicate with my dog in my puppy voice (“come heeeere my little schnuggly wiggle butt,” etc.) in front of friends, acquaintances and strangers alike.

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Because seriously, look at him. He’s the cutest widdle bug.

People who try to embarrass me in public (especially my boyfriend, who likes to just randomly yell jibberish in public places) will either find me totally unfazed or willing to up the ante somehow.

I, however, am mildly ashamed to admit that I’ve eaten ramen for lunch every day this week. Out of a mug. In my defense, I’ve been fighting off what appears to be Captain Trips for the better part of a week, and therefore the wherewithal to prepare food by going further than sticking a mug in the microwave for a few minutes has eluded me. But tomorrow, I’ll be ending the work week with a bang, and bringing some tasty leftovers to work.

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Quinoa fried rice, and tri-state area pride.

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Growing up a stone’s throw away from the greatest city on earth (and hailing from the home state of aforementioned superlative crooner, thankyouverymuchnowgetoutoftheleftlane), I recognize that I’m lucky to have immediate access to a wide array of (well-done) cuisines – with the exception of barbecue, maybe. There’s an incredible Chinese takeout place across the street, two amazing pizzerias down the block, and quite possibly the best sushi (and half price, most days) I’ve ever eaten less than 10 minutes away. And I live in a teeny little suburb! Killer burritos, to-die-for-tapas, cracker-thin pizza, melt-in-your-mouth sushi; you name it, it’s possible for me to have that for dinner tonight and be one hundred percent satisfied. Now, I don’t mean to sound cocky; I recognize that (with the exception of maybe pizza), restaurants/takeout here may not be the absolute, hands-down, best-in-the-nation. For example, I’m sure the Southwest has better burritos – but ours are nothing to sneeze at.

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