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Back in the Kitchen

The kitchen is one of my favorite places to be. It is a relaxing and creative place for me where I can forget about whatever else is going on at that moment. Life has been so crazy lately that I haven’t spent much time in my happy place. Since I’ve been on this break from overtraining I’ve found myself keeping busy in the kitchen. It feels so good to be back at what I love – cooking and baking.

Since my self-imposed halt in marathon training I’ve…

Baked Sinckerdoodle blondies for friends coming over to watch the game and actually had time to be a hostess and put together a well thought out food spread.

Made Sunday breakfast for my husband for the first time in months. I’ve been too busy getting myself to the yoga studio or on the road first thing weekend mornings.

Spent most of the day Sunday making pita bread. Is there anything more therapeutic than working with yeast?

Cooked a nice Sunday dinner and tried two new recipes as part of our meal. Sauteed trout with pecans, brown rice and veggie pilaf and green beans.

Whipped up the first Fall inspired dish of the season for Monday night’s dinner. Island pork tenderloin on the Big Green Egg over pumpkin polenta. A salad with brie, apples, mushrooms, almonds and balsamic vinaigrette on the side.

I’m off to get ready for work now but I leave you with the recipe for the pumpkin polenta. It was requested in the weekly menu plan! Have a great day everyone – I’ll be back at you tonight with some new abdominal exercises using the stability ball!

Pumpkin Polenta
(Recipe adapted from Taste of Home)

2 1/2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
1/4 cup cream cheese

Bring chicken stock to a boil in a medium saucepan. Slowly whisk in cornmeal and reduce heat to a simmer. (If your cornmeal is lumpy you may want to run it through a sifter before adding.) Cook, stirring very frequently, until polenta has thickened and is starting to pull away from the sides of the pan. This should take about 20 minutes.

Stir in pumpkin and cream cheese. Season with salt if needed – mine did not need salt since I used chicken stock.

Yield: 3-4 servings

{ 10 comments… add one }
  • thejoggingconcierge September 21, 2010, 8:56 am

    Oooh, that pork tenderloin looks sooo good. 😛

  • Becca September 21, 2010, 1:10 pm

    Thanks for posting the polenta recipe, i can’t wait to try it!

  • Claudie September 21, 2010, 1:18 pm

    Jen, there are two more hours till lunch time, and I’m already starving cuz of you 🙂 lol
    But I totally understand you. I love cooking too and particularly since I finally stopped traveling between the two coasts – now I can experiment with my husband’s meals all the time 😉

  • Jen September 21, 2010, 3:43 pm

    I have a new love for pork tenderloin, so far I only have 1 way to cook it, but yours looks amazing!!!


    • Jen September 22, 2010, 12:03 pm

      Oh, I love pork tenderloin. I have a few different recipes on Bakin’ and Eggs – check them out! It’s so versatile!

  • Kelly September 21, 2010, 6:23 pm

    Making bread is therapeutic. I’m so glad you have found a way to channel your energy while you’re taking a brief break from training, especially since that energy channeled itself to make pumpkin polenta. I definitely have to try that. 🙂

  • Amanda M. September 21, 2010, 8:06 pm

    I absolutely love anything with pumpkin!! I look forward to some more of your fall recipes!

  • Josie September 22, 2010, 11:46 am

    What a bummer about your injury, Jen 🙁
    All your cooking looks great though – I did baked grits on Monday night, and used pumpkin instead of an egg, and we LOVED the addition – I’m going to have to try your pumpkin polenta next!

    • Jen September 22, 2010, 11:59 am

      Funny, when I was making the polenta I thought, “hmm…I wonder how pumpkin would be in grits?” because I prefer the texture of stone ground grits over polenta. Good to know that you did it and liked it. Will definitely be trying that!

  • Ashlee September 22, 2010, 4:48 pm

    I love anything with pumpkin!!!
    I’m so sorry about your injury and realize when you are injured, you gotta kinda think of it as a time to be able to do different things that normally you don’t have time to do. I know, easier said than done. Hopefully, these rest days will help and you will back to training. One way to look at it is that at least your entire muscles that you use when running are getting to rest. I always feel so much better after my muscles have had a rest day so that is what I tried to tell myself when I was having IT band problems.
    I’m really looking forward to more recipes and reading about your ab exercises as I’ve been concentrating putting yoga to balance my run and strengthening my core.

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