Portland Waterfront

New Route

I went on a new route for my lunch time run on Friday! It kind of happened as a fluke. I was running to the Hawthorne Bridge just as the alarms started going off that it was going up. I looked at the river and didn’t see any boats coming, so it was kind of a mystery. I decided to keep going instead of waiting for who knows how long for the bridge to open up (and I didn’t want to just turn around).

So I kept running along the waterfront to the South Waterfront. It’s the new area south of the Hawthorne where there’s a bunch of high rises and OHSU buildings. I decided to try and cross the new(ish) Tilikum Crossing bridge. It’s the bridge that is just for people, bikes, buses and the Max.

Since I’ve never actually been on the new bridge, I didn’t know where it really was on that side of the water. I got a little lost. Then I flagged down some other runners and asked them. They kindly gave me good directions and I set off.

I found the bridge and it was really nice! It was kind of steep and pretty windy, but the wind felt nice because it was such a hot day out.

It was a decent run, which was nice because I’ve been sick for several weeks with a sinus infection (thankfully the antibiotics are kicking in). My last run before getting sick was awful (clearly because I was getting sick!) so this was much better. Other than feeling really hot, my run was good.

I got to the other side of the bridge and picked up the Springwater trail right by OMSI.

It was cool finding a new route because the same old thing a few times a week can get really monotonous. This new route will be a great way to mix things up!

I ran by OMSI and then crossed the Hawthorne Bridge back to downtown. It was a pretty hot day, even though I went out on my run early. It was 79 degrees and I felt like I was getting overheated. My face felt really hot and my heart rate was pretty high at the end of the run. So I ended up walking a lot more for the last mile of my run trying to cool off and calm my heart down.

Here is the map of my run:

You can kinda see where I got lost and then turned around and found the route to South Waterfront!

I think in the future I will do this route again. If I can get faster and not be overheated and not have to walk so much, I think I can stretch it to the Morrison Bridge. But we’ll see. I do have limited time for my lunch. I think my next run I will try this route again but go the opposite way so I can find the best route downtown to get to the bridge.

Yay for new horizons!

Peppers and Puppy Dog Tails

I’m so glad this recipe turned out. I’d had a rough week and was feeling rather “fragile” when I was making this dinner and had it ended up in the garbage I feel like there would have been tears, just one more thing to go wrong. To be perfectly honest, these most recent weeks at work have been a challenge. There hasn’t been a single day where I wasn’t tempted to just walk out; but I am responsible and no matter how bad it gets I won’t leave until I find something else. I am aggressively looking and applying to other things. It’s time for a change.

But back to dinner. Thank the Goddess this dinner was delicious.

Turkey and Feta Stuffed Peppers

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Serving Size: 1 pepper

Calories per serving: About 639

From: http://www.eatliverun.com/turkey-and-feta-stuffed-peppers/

Ingredients

  • 4 large green bell peppers, tops sliced off and seeds removed
  • 1.5 lbs ground turkey
  • 1 28-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 yellow onion, small diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 stalks celery, small diced
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large skillet on the stove. Once hot, add the onion and celery, and saute for 5 minutes until soft. Add the minced garlic and continue sauteing for another minute.
  3. Turn the heat to high. Add the tomato paste to the skillet and mash the onions, celery and garlic together with the paste. Cook for three minutes, stirring continuously.
  4. Add the ground turkey and brown with the veggies. This should take about six minutes.
  5. Then, add the diced tomatoes, salt, basil, oregano and red pepper flakes. Bring mixture to a simmer and cook for about 15-20 minutes, until sauce reduces and isn’t as runny. Remove pan from heat and stir in the feta cheese.
  6. Place the green bell peppers on a tin foil-lined sheet tray. Fill each pepper with turkey and feta mixture. Once all peppers have been filled, cover peppers with a large piece of tin foil and seal.
  7. Bake peppers for 30 minutes. Serve and enjoy!
http://www.110pounds.com/?p=37551

You know what else helped my mood? The “skinny” Pina Colada I made for myself while it was cooking! For around 150 calories, I was able to enjoy a pina colada that was truly awesome and hit the spot. I suppose I was craving some island beverage; sadly, I didn’t have any umbrellas to put in my drink.

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It’s hard to screw up stuffed peppers. I’ve tried about half a dozen different kinds of stuffed pepper recipes (Stuffed PeppersSouthwestern Stuffed Acorn Squash) and they were all good in their own way. My absolute favorite was definitely the Pecan and Wild Rice-Stuffed Squash I made. Not exactly a stuffed pepper but stuffed nonetheless. I LOVED the flavors of the wild rice and the crunch of the nuts.

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And this is the part of the post where I tell you how I changed the recipe. 🙂 First, I used red and yellow peppers because they are my favorites. Second, I added some of the Costco Organic Non-Salt Seasoning, dried rosemary and extra red pepper flakes. I’m glad I did, it turned out great! It smelled so good while it was simmering on the stove. Michael commented that we just eat that instead of stuffing the peppers with it. But no, we were having peppers. I love peppers.

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I used my cupcake tin to cook the peppers in because they kept trying to fall over in all my other dishes. It worked great!

I baked the peppers at 350 for about 20 minutes or so. I could have left them in another 10 minutes I think because my pepper was still a bit “crunchy.” But it wasn’t bad. I loved this recipe. It was so tasty and it felt healthy, not like a gut bomb of food.

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The verdict from Michael was that it was a winner. We’ll definitely be eating this again in the near future. I loved the flavors–there was a sweetness to it, that I suppose is from the tomatoes and tomato paste, and there was also a nice bite of spice. I added more red pepper flakes than the recipe called for and I was glad I did. It balanced out the sweetness nicely. And of course, the cheese was perfect. 🙂

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One thing I did notice was that the stuffing part was a tad runny. I had cooked it in the skillet for the required time to reduce the liquid but there was still a lot left. I’m not sure if maybe I needed to add more paste or what. The next day I ate the leftover stuffing mixture for lunch after the gym. It was even better the next day. I measured out a serving of whole wheat pasta and added the turkey mixture then topped it with some feta.

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After lunch, Michael and I went to the Pixie Project for an afternoon of dog walking. It was such a gorgeous day. I’d been expecting rain but it was sunny and warm. The skies were perfectly blue and everything was in bloom. It would be impossible to be in a bad mood with weather like this.

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The first dog we took out was Dublin. He was a high energy dog. Michael walked him because I think Dublin would have been dragging me down the street.

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He was a while and yellow colored dog, maybe some kind of lab pit bull mix? He had a little pit bull in his face and he was STRONG. He was also a jumper and a runner. Hahaha! Look at how excited Dublin is!

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We took him around the Convention Center and let him run around in the grassy area but then he seemed to have some tummy troubles so we took him back to the shelter. I guess they got him recently, so there probably isn’t a profile for Dublin yet on their website. But most of the dogs I post pictures of are waiting for adoption–if anyone in the Portland area is interested.

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The next dog we took out was Jasmine. She was a cocker spaniel mix of some sort. She was such a sweetheart! She knew “sit” but would only sit when Michael told her to. And of course she’d get a treat if she sat. She was really well-behaved (especially compared to the very active Dublin) but she was also active in her own way. She wanted to be the leader and as volunteer dog walkers we’re not supposed to try and train or “correct behavior” but if it were my dog, I’d probably train it not to pull the leash.

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Jasmine was really sweet and super soft. She also loved her reflection in windows. She would stop and stare at herself, I suppose wondering who the other dog was. Too funny.

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Jasmine and I had a grand old time walking in the sunshine. As always, I was kinda sad to drop the dogs back off at the shelter and go. If I could I’d probably spend all day there playing with puppies. I mean how awesome does that sounds? Also, The Pixie Project has cats, too. As we were leaving I gazed into the window at all the sleepy kitties sunny themselves in the window. Adorable. When I got home, Fat Kitty was sniffing all over me. Yep, that’s dog you smell baby! Sorry…. 🙂

QUESTION: What’s your favorite “stuffed” recipe?