Tag Archives: giving blood

A Parfait Parley

25 Mar

My spinach-eating efforts were successful! I gave blood again on Friday morning with not a single reprimand from the nurses hinting at my borderline anemia (implying that it no longer exists). Phew. I wish I could offer another iron-dense recipe in this post, but the insanity of the last week or so has prevented me from performing any elaborate kitchen escapades. And by elaborate, I mean requiring more than opening, pouring, or mixing together. To be gentle: I had a run-in with my landlady last week, and to avoid eviction (really, I think!) quickly found another room that is being sublet to me for my remaining months in Maryland. As it turns out, a twin-sized mattress DOES fit into a Honda Fit. Although, its large presence in the car makes steering difficult, bringing my driving abilities, generously self-rated at a ‘5’ on a scale of 1 to 10, down a half-point.

Packing, then moving, then unpacking is a treacherous and exhausting process – but at least a good workout. I’ve spent the week catering to my OCD-like need for cleanliness, attempting to re-organize my things and sweep the carpet in my new room with a vacuum that prefers spreading dust and dirt over vacuuming it. So instead of cooking, I microwaved, and made quick little snacks. One of these snacks is featured below. What with the yogurt craze that seems to be going around these days, it may be something you’ve thought of already yourself. But it’s delicious, healthy, and quick to fling together, making it noteworthy in the food tweaks realm.


INGREDIENTS (Makes 1 serving):

– 1 [6 oz.] Dannon Light & Fit Yogurt (choose your flavor; I recommend veering away from the more experimental flavors, such as Caramel Delight and Lemon Chiffon)

– 2 packets of McDonald’s granola packets (if, like me, your mother has an obsession with McDonald’s yogurt parfaits, minus the granola packets, which she gifts to you, and which you now have enough of that it’s worth hiding them to avoid explanation) OTHERWISE: 2 Tbs granola or granola-esque cereal (such as Raisin Bran or Honey Bunches of Oats)

– 2 Tbs. raisins

DIRECTIONS (not because I underestimate your intelligence, but for the sake of blogger consistency):

1. Spoon the yogurt into a bowl.

2. Sprinkle the granola and raisins on top.

3. Mix. Eat. Enjoy.

CALORIES (per serving): 205

The yogurt flavor I most enjoy inserted into this combination is Strawberry Banana. And I prefer granola over cereal, although perhaps I have not found the ideal cereal for mixing into yogurt? Please, tweak it up in response to this query! Or if you have any other wildly creative yogurt parfait combos that you know I’m dying to hear about, please tweak it!

Iron [Wo]Man

24 Feb

I donated blood several weeks ago after a two year hiatus. But my low iron levels just barely made the cut. Though the nurse strongly discouraged me from returning in the near future (and she must have meant it too, considering I have a rare blood type, O negative!), I fully intend to return soon, and with restored iron levels. How? By eating iron-rich foods, of course. A quick google search yielded some foods I can happily stomach: red meat, dried fruit, green, leafy vegetables. But it also yielded some “only if I am forced to give blood because I am the last O negative donor on the Earth and all other iron-rich foods have been wiped out will I eat this” options: chicken giblets, mollusks, lentils, liver…nothing that screams, or even whispers, “delectable.”

Well, thank goodness for the palatable items on the list! For the time being, I’m exploring the green, leafy vegetable subcategory, starting with the Popeye classic: spinach. That’s right – I ate spinach every single day last week! And it was delicious, really, in the context of my low calorie version of warm spinach salad. See for yourself:

WARM SPINACH SALAD (Makes 3 Servings)


– 6 cups raw spinach

– Egg whites from 4 hardboiled eggs, sliced

– 1/2 red onion, sliced

– 9 white mushrooms, sliced

– 2 pieces turkey bacon, cooked in microwave and crumbled.

Toss the salad ingredients together.


– 1/4 cup sugar

– 2 Tbs. vegetable oil

– 2 Tbs. water

– 2 Tbs. ketchup

– 1 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce

– 2 Tbs. red wine vinegar

Combine salad dressing ingredients. Warm in microwave and stir vigorously before serving.

CALORIES (per serving of salad + 3 Tbs. dressing): 200

On a more serious note: every 2 seconds someone in the U.S. needs blood. That’s enough to make me regret my blood-donating hiatus, and to encourage any borderline anemics out there to join me in boosting our iron levels!! Have a better way to do so than my recipe? Tweak it!