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So I have been really enjoying lately getting into foods that cook themselves. I don’t know whether this is a coincidence or what, but it makes organizing yummy and healthy foods much easier because most of these methods allow me to omit virtually oil etc and be scrupulously aware of the ingredients I am using, without being a massive PITA. So I have the slow cooker and the big iron pots, but the other day I discovered something which had never occurred to me, and was totally prompted by trying to come up with a meal using just what I had in the house.

Got a new rice cooker and noticed that the little recipe book had some recipes for rice cooker risotto. Now I quite like risotto, but find it can be finicky and Hub isn’t always a great fan of the way I make it. So the other day I noticed that I had pretty much everything I needed for one of the recipes in the house. Seeing as this coincided with me being way too unethused to go shopping it was a goer.

I am officially on board with the rice cooker risotto idea. Risotto in the rice cooker is super easy and makes very nice risotto with minimum of finicks, plus it is absolutely designed to regulate portion control.

So far we have experimented with a couple of different recipes which have been a great hit. The only requirements is that the ingredients have to require a relatively limited amount of cooking or otherwise need to be cooked in advance. Simply put, you spray the rice cooker bowl with some oil spray or a dash of olive oil, and put it on the cook setting for one minute. Then you add finely diced onion and/or garlic and whatever herbs you might want to use. Stir until the onions are mostly cooked then add some Arborio rice and the right amount of stock. Stick the lid on and forget it until it flips from cook to warm. Then stir in some parmesan and whatever other ingredients you have decided on and any final seasoning. Leave on warm setting for 10 mins or until it tastes ready.

That is all there is to it – with a little bit of prep you can have a yummy healthy dinner cooking away for you in the background leaving you free to watch Boston Legal to your heart’s content.

We have used this technique for a chicken tomato and basil risotto (add chopped tomato and thinly sliced grilled chicken) and for a chicken, spinach and mushroom risotto so far (baby spinach, grilled chicken and sliced mushrooms) and both were excellent.


So I really wasn’t feeling like going for a run yesterday. I had already procrastinated about it for a day so I pulled on the runners and headed out. Felt awful and totally without energy but at least holier than thou about actually getting out there.

And though I felt awful and unenthused it was a pretty nice morning for it. I noticed a young guy on the actual road itself practicing exercises with a soccer ball. So I waited until I drew up almost level with him to display my incredible ineptitude by catching my toe on a raised bit of concrete and falling spectacularly to the ground. Splat.

My first impulse when sprawled on the ground was to see if I could right myself casually so that it would appear to anyone happening to see this spectacle that *I meant it* and that I had fully intended to fall over in that way. Amazingly enough the guy with soccer ball didn’t seem to notice (or was embarrassed enough to pretend not to have noticed), so I think I got away with it.

Needless to say, with a bleeding leg and sore hands from breaking my fall, I decided that karma had decreed that the run should finish. So I limped pitifully back home to drown my sorrows in the shower. The leg is fine, with just some brusing, cuts and gravel rash, but hurts enough for me to feel sorry for myself and vaguely sheepish for managing to be so unco.

Loser. I don’t know why I am allowed out of the house without full crash gear and all the trimmings.

Well it certainly has been lately. For some reason to buck the trend I always find it more appetising to be regularly exercising in Winter – love splashing through the puddles and the rain and so on. As a result, having had a week where I have been pretty busy and unable to get out much, I am absolutely hanging out to go for a bit of a trot tonight.

Anyone else who is a big Joss Whedon (Buffy, Angel, Firefly) fan like I am absolutely has to check his new project. It had me giggling last night, particularly after having watched Felicity Day for the last year in her web project The Guild. Oh and if you are into fun things on the interwebz, be sure to check out Julia Nunes who I find to be just adorable.

Hmm that turned into a collection of random links, didn’t it?

Anyway, don’t have much to say but to tick the boxes that still on track and doing the things I want to be doing. My ipod ran out of batteries and I was too lazy to charge it so I am not sure how the vampires are going, but will find out what they are up to tonight.

So, sitting here in dreary old Melbourne on a freezing day.

The running is going well. Still sticking to a short loop which gives me about 20-25 min of running/walking depending on how much I walk. Amazingly enough I have to move to my next biggest loop as am beginning to get through it too quickly due to few walking breaks. Yay me.

Don’t you hate it when you try to make a good food choice and opt for a salad or something instead of that yummy looking fish burger which you are so tempted by. And then the salad turns up drowning in dressing, totally soggy and lacklustre (and the person who ordered a burger said it was fabulous).

I don’t know why it should be that I eat so much better when religiously tracking my food. It is not like anyone checks whether I am telling the truth or finds out if I have done the wrong thing. Maybe I just want to impress the the little online tracker tool with how conscientious I am being.

You know, you can be really focussed on a new running program, but sometimes you have more residual soreness from the weeding and garden clearing galore from four days ago. Ouch. Hammies still sore.

I wonder why my work isn’t more like Boston Legal? It gives me a little let down when I come into work and find that Alan Shore and Denny Crane haven’t materialised in my office holding a cigar and a glass of scotch.