Whole wheat banana protein muffins

Today was one of those days when I really hated being a grownup. Last night our furnace stopped working. The hubs called the company we purchased said furnace from, a mere 4 months ago, and made a noontime appointment. He ran off to Lowe’s to pick up chicken coop building supplies before the appointment. While attempting to leave Lowe’s, he discovered the Volvo’s battery was dead. Insert father-in-law, Rob, to the rescue. Rob graciously drove into town to move all supplies from our Volvo to his truck in order to reach the dead battery. Yes, our battery is where one would normally find a spare tire. Why? Volvo thinks they are different/fancy/cool?

I hate you Volvo.

After finishing* the laundry, finishing up with the furnace repair man, and getting chicken coop materials home, I decided a little baking might improve my mood.

*a job that is never actually finished

I had these muffin liners sitting in my muffin sheet for two weeks. I hadn’t felt the inspiration to either bake muffins, or to put away the liners.

Yes, those would be Halloween liners my friends.

I took one look at my fruit bowl and decided something needed to be done with these sad looking nanners.

Inspiration finally struck, and I started combing the internet for a recipe that only required me to shop in my pantry.

I found one, but it didn’t look too fantastic. Halfway through the process of pulling items out of my pantry I remembered I only had whole wheat flour. Since my oven was already in the process of pre-heating, and I wasn’t in the mood to run to the store, I decided to give it a go.

I didn’t have high hopes, as I prefer to blend my whole wheat and white flour together. But I’m glad I did, because these muffins are so light and fluffy you would never guess they were whole wheat! I added so many additional ingredients to the recipe I found, it is almost comical to say I adapted the recipe. But, here is the original recipe in case you don’t feel like all the add-ins.

Whole wheat banana protein muffins

Makes 18 muffins

Nutritionals: Cal: 145, Carb: 28g, Fat: 2g, Pro: 6 g


4 very ripe bananas

2 eggs

3/4 cup unsweetened apple sauce

1 tsp vanilla

2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup white sugar

1/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

2 scoops GNC whey protein powder, unflavored (you could also use vanilla or chocolate or strawberry for a fun change)

2 TBS chia seeds


In medium bowl mash bananas, add vanilla, applesauce and eggs. Blend well.

In large bowl combine whole wheat flour, white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, baking soda and protein powder.

Mix wet into dry.

After combined fold in chia seeds.

Distribute evenly in muffin liners,

and bake 20-25 minutes, (until toothpick is inserted and comes out clean).

Transfer to wire rack to cool. I use the same toothpick to move my muffins.

Enjoy plain, with peanut butter, nutella, cream cheese, or whatever your heart desires.

Mmmm, nanner-nugget.

For the love of the goat

The Flying Goat that is.

Which, coincidentally, is where I am right now. The option to schedule a post during a time I know I will be neck deep in March Madness is a wonderful thing.

If you’ve been reading my blog for oh, a day or two, you may have noticed I kind of enjoy The Flying Goat. A quick glance at my tag cloud will reveal my slight obsession with this neighborhood eatery.

And if you’ve just stumbled upon my blog, welcome.

You may have found this post via Foodbeat NW. If not, have you heard of Foodbeat NW?

Foodbeat NW

Foodbeat NW is new to the Northwest foodie scene and it’s mission is to:

SUPPORT LOCAL FOOD. Committed to showcasing independent restaurants and food artisans around the Pacific NW. Keep coming back for fresh, releveant info about local dining in & dining out experiences.


The Flying Goat is one of the few locally owned, non-chain restaurants in Northwest Spokane, and features menu items named after streets in their neighborhood. After opening in late Spring 2010, The Flying Goat quickly grew in popularity. One look at their thin crust pies, fire pit patio seating, and mounted goat head can tell you why, The Flying Goat has personality. From their out of the ordinary pizza toppings to their fabulous bar and wait staff, The Flying Goat never fails to impress.

Meet Nate, your bartender.

Nate knows his brews, and if he doesn’t know if a certain beer will please your palate he will kindly offer a tasting.

The Flying Goat rotates its beers quite regularly, however, one will always be available: The Horned Aviator. The Flying Goat paired up with local brewery, Northern Lights, to create a truly local house beer. If beer doesn’t strike your fancy you can enjoy a glass of Goat Head Red, a mild red blend created by Townshend Winery.

Moving over to their food menu you will be pleased to discover the crust and sauce is made in house. Nothing beats fresh dough and sauce. The Flying Goat likes to support local Northwest businesses as well, purchasing their meat pizza toppings from Zoe’s of Seattle.

Speaking of homemade sauce, their pesto is out of this world delicious. This isn’t your average pesto. Instead of sweet basil, The Flying Goat uses spicy and bitter arugula as their green base. The arugula is complemented by the saltiness of the Parmesan, smoothness of olive oil and the nutty and earthy finish from the pine nuts. Although the Centennial Trail cheese bread appetizer does not come with arugula pesto, I always request a side of dipping goodness.

If you prefer to start your meal with a salad, don’t worry, they have a few options. My favorite is the Audubon Caesar. I’ve proclaimed my love of their Caesar before, and I will praise its name again. The Flying Goat really knows how to do a Caesar salad correctly. Sure, it has all your normal ingredients: bed of romaine lettuce, croutons, Parmesan cheese, Caesar dressing. But it has so much more. The croutons are made on sight and are amazing. You may not believe me, as amazing is thrown around as an adjective all the time when describing food. However, I am someone who detests croutons. There is something about dried bread on my greens that I cannot stomach. But the freshly made croutons The Flying Goat has whipped up? There are no words. Also impressive is their ability to make a balanced house-made dressing and not drown their greens in the goodness. Spritz with a roasted lemon and your taste buds will tingle.

I’ve never eaten a Goat sandwich, as their pizza is what I’m really after. Pizza is the perfect food in my mind. If I could only have one food for the rest of my life, it would be pizza. The Flying Goat does not disappoint.

You can get some traditional pies: Kerry Lynn Margherita (mozzarella, basil, red sauce, and the option to add ham or heirloom tomatoes), Northwest Blvd. (Zoe’s pepperoni, caramelized onion, house cheese blend and red sauce), and the Gordon (Zoe’s pepperoni, Italian sausage, kalamata olives, oven roasted mushrooms, house cheese blend and red sauce), there are many more options available.

I’ve enjoyed many a pie at The Flying Goat, including my absolute favorite: the Cleveland, (roasted Yukon Gold potatoes, rosemary, garlic, caramelized onion, Fontina cheese and extra virgin olive oil). When you think pizza you normally don’t think potato. But trust me, this pie is to die for. The blend of the thinly sliced Yukon Golds with the buttery goodness of the roasted garlic is melt in your mouth magic.

You just can’t go wrong at The Flying Goat. The dining area caters to families, hipsters, nervous first-daters and young professionals alike. The bar features a laid back area, full of conversation and local breweries and wineries. So walk, ride your bike, catch a bus or drive over to The Flying Goat. You’ll probably see me there.

Everybody dance now.

Guess who chose an alarm that was only reoccurring on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings?

That would be me.

Guess who wishes she wasn’t celebrating the Zags win last night as much as she did?

Also me.

Guess who wasn’t organized in normal-fashion this morning?

Still me.

Oatfit again made its presence known for breakfast.

Chobani followed soon after.

For lunch I brought what I thought was a bean, rice, veggie and cheese burrito, only to discover chicken was an ingredient as well. Sonofab. March Madness, I blame you.

Luckily I had a can of soup stashed on my shelf for such emergencies.

It wasn’t amazing or anything, in fact it was rather sweet, but it did fill me up.

On the side I had a multi-grain english muffin with a laughing cow wedge.

Later on I snacked on an apple, prepping myself for the madness that is chaperoning a middle school dance.

We have a school rule that students cannot attend the dances if they have any unpaid library fines or overdue books. You would be amazed how many books I received back today. Amazed. And amazed by the number of parents who left work to go home, find said books, and bring them to school. Wow.

Since the dance was St. Patty’s themed, I figured that even though the day when everyone is Irish has passed, I could still show you a picture of that Reuben Maddness bracket I told y’all about on Wednesday.

Cute, no? I nabbed the paper before it hit the recycling bin just so I could get a photo for y’all. Or maybe just for myself, because I find a food bracket to be quite pleasing.

I arrived home a short while ago and immediately started snacking on my adzuki bean chips.

I’m contemplating what to do about dinner. Middle school dances exhaust me, I kind of want to order take-in, but I can only think of pizza as an option. Hmmm…

While I decide what I’m going to do, here’s your fashion Friday installment for the week.

Monday was way cuter in my head.

Tuesday was all about the comfort


Thursday, everyone loves an Irish girl.

Friday, school spirit style.

In non-foodie related news, my friend Amy is starting student teaching on Monday. Nerve-wracking! I know there are quite a few teachers who read my blog, so if you are one what is your number one piece of advice for student teaching

Mine is: Be consistent – with everything! Remember, you aren’t their friend, you’re their teacher. If they get upset with you for being an enforcer of classroom rules/expectation they are really just upset with themselves, don’t take it personally!



Go zags!

Oh Thursday, I detest you.

Seven forty-five a.m. meetings really cramp my style. You would think needing to arrive at work a whopping fifteen minutes earlier than normal wouldn’t be that big of a deal. But for some reason my body just doesn’t want to cooperate.

No, scratch that, not my body, my mind. Every Wednesday night I pack my gym bag, and every Thursday morning I skip the gym. Last night I was determined to go. This morning I awoke to my alarm at the normal 5:04 a.m. harp tune, hit snooze twice, and tried to talk myself into going to the gym. I decided a mental pro-con list might help.


  • Probably won’t get any more sleep between now and 6:15 a.m.
  • The hubs is snoring.
  • I already have my gym bag packed.
  • I won’t have to take turns in front of the bathroom mirror.
  • Thirty minutes of exercise is better than none.
  • Coffee is already brewed, and ready for my contigo. If I wait it will taste burnt from sitting on the burner too long.
  • I get ready much more efficiently at the gym than I do at home.
  • I will feel better afteward.


  • My bed is sooooo warm and comfy!

Ummm that is all I had for a con. And, sadly, that con would usually trump all my pros. But today I pushed my con aside, and forced myself to get out of my oh-so-comfortable bed and hit the gym for a little jogging action.

I knocked out 2.36 miles in 30 minutes on the treadmill. Not too shabby, (for me, I am suuuuuuuper slow, so for me, that is awesome). However, I realized that I only have 6 weeks and 3 days until Bloomsday. The furthest I’ve run in my “training” is 3 miles. Three miles. And it is a 12K. I am in no way ready to be a participant!

Crap. (Not to be confused with runners trots.)

So I’m determined to find a six week 12K program to get my bootay in gear. No more of this laissez faire, run when I feel like it, I’m totally fine attitude.

Post gym I ate a packet of oatfit and a chobani, with coffee on the side, of course.

Then I had the most fabulous salad: spinach, roasted red bell pepper, craisins, goat cheese, sweet onion, and homemade dressing,

and look what I found inside, a 3-leaf clover!

It isn’t 4 leaves, but that has to be good luck, right?!

I also gobbled up the excess of my quinoa stuffed bell pepper mixture.

Later on I snacked on a nanner,

and some macadamia nut hershey’s kisses from my co-worker, who just returned from Hawaii, (lucky duck!).

And I also rocked a green halo all day.

After leaving work on time(!!!), I took off through the woods,

and to Grandmother’s house The Flying Goat I went.

I enjoyed quite a few treats,

tried to take in-focus pictures,

(oh wait, there we go),

and cheered on my zags.


Oh, and by the way, we won. Thankyouverymuch. Saturday, I am anxiously awaiting your presence.

Do you watch college basketball? Which team are you rooting for in the NCAA tournament?


Beans, beans the magical fruit…

Go ahead, sing the rest of that childhood tune to yourself. You know you want to. And if you do you might have some idea about how this household is adjusting to no meat in our daily eats.


I think I would be a better vegetarian if I were to wean myself off meat, rather than approaching it cold-turkey style. But that’s not how I roll. However, the hubs and I built in a few exceptions to the “no meat for Lent,” rule. We will cash in one tomorrow: corned beef on St. Patty’s.

Today’s Food section, in The Spokesman Review, spoke to me, featuring a Rueben Madness* competition between local Spokane restaurants.   Surprisingly Madeleine’s, (a French cafe’ downtown), won out. A French cafe’ beat out O’Doherty’s Irish Grille? And The Elk’s rueben featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives? Craziness.

*I wish I had taken a photo of the rueben madness article, there was a rueben in the center and brackets coming off of it with the other rueben photos. It was kind of awesome.

Will I eat the winning rueben tomorrow? Only time will tell.

I can, however, tell you what I ate today.

Breakfast featured oats with almond milk, chia seeds, blueberry craisins, cherry craisins, pepitas and cinnamon.

I also hydrated while I dehydrated, in true Leila style.

Lunch was a concoction of black beans, roasted butternut squash, roasted mushrooms, sharp cheddar and some cilantro.

With an apple and seltzer on the side.

My co-worker sported the cutest tiny water bottle I’ve seen in a long time.

Side-by-side size-up with my seltzer.

I don’t even like Dasani water,  (it totally takes has a plastic taste from the bottle), but I still think its a cutie-patootie bottle.

Later on I snacked on some baby carrots with my new hummus obsession:

Lilly’s Smoked Tomato and Basil.

Omigosh, this hummus is bombdiggity!

I need to figure out how to smoke a tomato, (although I supposed liquid smoke will do in a pinch).

I was still hungry when I walked through my front door, so I nibbled on a nanner with sunflower seed frosting butter.

I have nothing to compare it to, but this MaraNatha Sunflower Seed Butter is pretty amazing. Every so often you get a little nugget of sea salt and it is the perfect complement to the seed/earthy taste.

Then it was time for dinner. The hubs was not thrilled at the idea of eating a bean-filled leftover entree. So I whipped up a veggie-rific  ravioli dinner.

A bed of spinach topped with spinach & cheese ravioli (fresh section at Costco), roasted red bell pepper slices, and some onion/shroom/garlic that were sauteed in a little olive oil (pesto added in at the end to warm). I also added a scoash of red bell pepper pasta sauce (Safeway Select brand) to the top.

Mmmmm, so full, but I could totally eat more!

I also nibbled on some LaBrea rosemary olive oil bread with garlic butter.

Now I’m off to roll myself into bed, turn on my huglamp, and continue Megan’s 14-day Experiment, (aka, read for an hour – my personal challenge).


Don’t laugh, this book light is awesome! My dad gave me a huglamp for Christmas, and it is by far the best book light I’ve ever used!

How often do you read?

I used to read a LOT more than I am now. I read, on average, an hour-two hours a night, every night. But then I went through a major book slump after reading the Hunger Games trilogy, and I’ve had a hard time getting back in my groove.


Yesterday I did not blog about how much I hate daylight savings time. I’m sure you saw enough of that on your facebook feed. Or maybe you were the complainer. But don’t worry, I share the same sentiment. However, yesterday the gym was pure heaven, hardly anyone was there!  I smirked my way through my workout, thinking about how I was getting my sweat on while they were all sleeping in. Lazy bums. But then I had to eat my smirk, because today DST kicked my arse, and I totally skipped my workout.

Snooze, snooze, snooze….reset alarm….force myself out of bed, pour coffee and hit the road. Caffeine and oatmeal fueled my morning.

old fashioned oats, vanilla almond milk, chia seeds, raisins, cinnamon

By lunch my B-6 vitamin finally entered my system. This fabulous salad of spinach, goat cheese, onion, tomato, bell pepper, craisins and homemade dressing helped too.

Plus an apple and some butternut squash soup.

During my late library night I snacked on a nanner, some honey-nana chobani yogurt (which is very sweet, I don’t think I’ll purchase again), and some decaf tea.

And then I decided to check out The Chill Spot, a fro-yo place that if I take a certain route just happens to be on my way home. Funny how that happens.

Upon entering the Chill Spot I discovered it was a self-serve situation. Score!

The Chill Spot offers 8 YoCream, (out of Portland, OR), flavors on tap. They also allow you to taste all of their flavors with mini tasting cups. YoCream has non-dairy, low-fat and sugar-free options as well. Here is a complete list of the rotating flavors + nutritional information.

Also available – a plethora of toppings, all self-serve too!

Options range from your standard fruits, candy bars, syrups to toasted coconut and low-fat granola. And the best part? The price! The Chill Spot weighs your concoction, and you pay 39 cents per ounce. Not too shabby.

Around the corner from the yogurt bar was a fun kiddie station complete with toys, coloring books and foodie magazines.

Okay, it was totally a Leila station. I foresee lazy summer afternoons, sitting on their patio, eating froyo and partaking in a little coloring action so I too can grace their wall’o’art.

All that coloring within the lines? Ya, adults totally were coloring, totally.

And let’s be honest, I’ll probably color on their faux-chalkboard too.

I exited the store with a pecan, vanilla and peanut butter fro-yo topped with cookie dough.

It is currently sitting in my freezer, waiting for post-dinner consumption. I made a chocolate/peanut butter + oreo bowl for the hubs, and Libb requested vanilla with 5 toppings.

Oh and when I got home I was greeted  with a care package from my mom including a super cute honey dispenser, fun forgive me I zinned magnet, her samples from Estee Lauder, (which she always gives me, and I love – I was totally in need of new mascara!), and LACTAID!

My Costco stopped carrying Lactaid, and I was one unhappy camper. When I inquired about the lack of lactose enzymes the Costco employee told me they might get some back during “ice cream season” in the summer. Like being lactose intolerant is a seasonal issue. Ummmm, no. So I started the hunt: Target was out, Fred Meyer was out, even Wal-Mart was out! I braved Wal-Mart and they didn’t provide any stomach comfort!

Mom and Dad to the rescue! Their Costco still sells these magical pills that allow me to consume dairy without any all of the side-effects.

After a quick debate about which leftover we would consume, we settled on taco’s for Tuesday. It isn’t Yakima style, but it works.

Tortillas filled with tomato, onion, black beans, diced green chiles, corn, cilantro and plain fage Greek yogurt.

Now about that froyo in the freezer…

Hello portabella sandwich, I’ve missed you.

My first real job out of college was working in the promotions department for the local FOX station. At the time I lived downtown and “commuted” to the South Hill for work. My commute was against the “rush” of traffic, as most people commuted into “the city.”

My “commute” was a whopping 15 minutes, which meant I could listen to approximately four songs on The Magic Numbers self titled album I kept on constant repeat.

Working on the South Hill didn’t provide the hustle and bustle of a downtown working environment, (insert sarcasm here), but it did provide quite a few fun eateries. My co-workers and I would enjoy payday lunches out twice a month, dining on panini’s at Ferrante’s, and portabella sandwiches at Luna.

Oh the portabella sandwiches at Luna. I would dream about payday just so I could sink my teeth into those glorious sandwiches. I could never afford Luna’s dinner fare on my starting salary, but I could relinquish the required funds for a midday splurge. Their portabella sandwich was the bar at which I measured all other portabella sandwiches. It was King, and I was happy to be it’s Queen.

Until the day Luna removed it from the menu. Panic set in, where would I ever get a portabella sandwhich again!? I’d tried others in town, but none could compare to the grilled ‘shroom on a kaiser roll with grilled zucchini, grilled yellow squash, roasted red peppers and garlic basil aioli.

I asked if they would create their sandwich one last time for me, and they tried, they honestly did. But the result was not the same. My portabella sandwich came out with lettuce, tomato and onion, but none of the grilled and roasted goodness which earned the King status I had previously appointed.

So here I was, a sad, broke twenty-something on the hunt for the greatest portabella sandwich in the world. And until tonight, the hunt had only resulted in sub-par representations of what this dish could really be.

But tonight, I rocked the portabella. And it rocked my world.

Bomb(dot)com Portabella Sandwich

Serves 2


2 large portabella caps, stems removed, washed and patted dry

olive oil spray as needed

salt as needed

half a red bell pepper, cored & seeded

onion slices

tomato slices

5 leaves basil, chiffonade cut

1 clove garlic, minced

2 TBS low-fat mayo

splash of lemon juice

2 ounces goat cheese

2 buns of your choice (I prefer kaiser rolls, but I didn’t have any today)

cookie sheet

jelly roll pan + cookie cooling rack


Turn oven to high broil. Spray cookie sheet with olive oil. Place half of red bell pepper skin side up, broil until blackened.

note: this is NOT black enough – you want the entire thing to be black, black, black!

After blacked, place bell pepper in ziplock bag and close. Let sit 20-30 minutes.

Change oven to low broil.

While bell pepper is cooling prep the following:

  • slice onion and tomato
  • make the basil aioli: chiffonade the basil, mince garlic, add both to 2 TBS mayo and a splash of lemon juice.
  • Place portabella caps on top of the cookie cooling rack, on top of the jelly roll pan. Spray with olive oil, lightly coating, and sprinkle a little salt.

When bell pepper is cooled remove skin completely, and slice.

Place portabella caps in the oven (on low broil) for 3-4 minutes. Flip, add buns with insides up and broil 1 minute. Remove buns, continue to broil portabellas 2-3 minutes. Flip again and top with half of the goat cheese. Place under broiler for an additional 1-2 minutes.

While portabellas are broiling, prep your buns with the basil aioli, onion, tomato, roasted bell pepper and remaining goat cheese.

When portabellas are finished add to your buns.

And enjoy.

I’ll have seconds please.