Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Venn Diagram Dining: Burritos

Venn Diagram Dining

I’m starting a new feature on my blog called Venn Diagram Dining. As you may know, my diet is mostly vegetarian, whereas my boyfriend Ryan has quite a taste for meat. However, our differences aside, we are trying to eat healthier and save money by cooking together. In Venn Diagram Dining, I’ll post our adventures in healthy gastronomy with a description of the meal we ate, including how our meals overlapped and where they diverged; photos of each dish; and recipes/tips.

The hope is to share two healthy versions of the same recipe with you. If you’re in the same situation as we are, and want to cook together. I hope this blog feature will serve as a meeting point for others who friends, families and couples with divergent diets.

Venn Diagram Burritos

Last night, we made chicken/tofu burritos. In the Venn Diagram below are lists of ingredients we each used. The recipe below yielded one good sized burrito for each of us for dinner, plus enough leftovers for two to three more burritos.

Our Dinner
Sautéed In The Shared Pan:
~ One quarter of a red onion
~ One can of corn
~ One can of black beans
~ One packet of gently milled brown rice, heated in the microwave for 90 seconds first
~ Fresh ground garlic salt and pepper

Garnished With:
~ Shredded Mexican blend cheese
~ Fresh oregano leaves
~ A drizzle of hot sauce

Wrapped In:
Whole wheat tortillas (large wrap size)

Ryan's Meal
Cooked In His George Foreman Lean Mean Fat-Reducing Grilling Machine:
One chicken breast, rubbed with spicy chipotle dry BBQ rub.

Heather’s Meal
Sautéed In My Pan:
~ Two kinds of squash, diced.
~ One package extra firm tofu, drained and squeezed, crumbled.

I added:
Diced avocado

Our thoughts about this meal:
We were both rather pleased with the outcome! Squash, beans, and corn are supposed to form a complete protein, as they provide all the essential amino acids. Along with the tofu, this was a superstar meal that provided a complete protein that was entirely plant-based!
We steamed the tortillas by laying them over the pan of beans and rice, but Ryan suggested next time we heat them in the oven on a skillet to get them a little crispier.

Please feel free to leave comments or suggestions!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Place Songs

For the musical geographer in you, the following list of songs about places was inspired by my friend DL. Please add your favorites in the comments section!

There are countless awesome songs about our Golden State:

~ "California Love" by 2Pac (

~ "California Girls" by the Beach Boys (

~ "Freeport Blvd" by Jackie Greene (couldn't find a video, but you can check it out on his website under "Gone Wandrin'" here:

~ Joni Mitchell - California - chock full of places other than CA, too!! (

~ "Sweet Home Alabama (I like the Counting Crows version better than Lynard Skynard's.) I can't find a video of Counting Crows' version... but also have the mp3 of that if you want it! Sometimes I change the lyrics so that I sing "Sweet Home El Dorado" instead of "Alabama," which is why I'm putting it under CA songs. :)

~ "Goin' to California" - Led Zeppelin (

~ "Lights" by Journey (

East Coast/NYC:

~ "On Broadway" by George Benson - a personal fave for me on karaoke nights! LOL! (

~ "Empire State of Mind" by Alicia Keys and Jay-Z (

Midwest/Rocky Mountains:

~ "Omaha" by Counting Crows, ( (Hehe - mentions "heather" in the first verse!)

~ "Ohio" by Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young ( - about the 1970 Kent State Massacre, as you probably know.

~ "Rocky Mountain High" by John Denver. I remember insisting on putting this on the stereo on a road trip when we entered Colorado! (

~ "Chicago" by Sufjan Stevens. (


~ "Kashmir" by Led Zepp (")

~ "Kathmandu" by Cat Stevens (

~ "Ivory Coast" by Rancid (

~ "China" by Tori Amos ( (very sad but beautiful)

~ "A Day In The Life" by the Beatles ( - I put this in here because when I was visiting a friend in Blackburn, Lancashire, in the UK, her mother told me that when this song came out, her town went nuts with visitors trying to figure out the lyrics... ("Four thousand holes in Blackburn, Lancashire/ And though the holes were rather small,/ I had to count them all/ Now I know how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall.")

The South:

~ "Leavin on a Midnight Train to Georgia" by Gladys Knight and the Pips (

US in general:

~ "Peace Frog" by the Doors

Three "place songs" I like by Creedence Clearwater Revival are:

~ "Proud Mary" (

~ "Green River" ( Did you know "Green River" was written about Winters, CA? (; and, of course:

~ "Lodi" (

If I had to choose one artist for road trips/traveling, I'd choose Simon and Garfunkel. Their songs are sometimes about specific places:

~ "Bleecker Street" (

Sometimes just about traveling, seeing new places, dreaming of home:

~ "America" (

~ "Homeward Bound" (

~ "American Tune" (

Another great artist for "place songs" is Frank Sinatra:

~ "New York, New York" with Tony Bennett (;

~ "My Kind of Town" (;

~ "California" (couldn't find a good video for it, but let me know if you want to hear the song - I have it on mp3);

~ Two songs of his about Brasil: "The Girl from Ipanema" with Antonio Carlos Jobim (

"The Coffee Song" (