Naked Fish – Sushi in Las Vegas

After a busy couple of weeks, Colby and I enjoyed a sushi date night at Naked Fish. If you’re in Las Vegas, definitely check out their happy hour menu, 5-6pm daily. For $21 you can get 3 sushi rolls and a beer, or order items a la carte. A glass of Chardonnay was $3 and a large seaweed salad was $4. I love the unique texture of seaweed salads, and while they’re high in sodium, seaweed is nutritious because it is rich in calcium, antioxidant compounds, and iodine (which isn’t present in many dietary sources!)

  

We also got a cucumber salad free for checking in on Yelp! You can choose between that and an order of edamame when you check in. The salad was pleasantly sweet and crunchy.

  

For $7 per order, I chose the yellowtail jalepeno and salmon yuzu, which were both very refreshing. The salmon was my favorite of the two because of the delicious marinade it was served in and there were more pieces included in the happy hour price!

  

Thr yellowtail jalepeno!

  

The salmon yuzu!

Colby ordered sushi rolls. The Japanese lasagna roll was served warm with melting cream cheese on top:

  

This one is the Roppangi roll, filled with spicy tuna and topped with more tuna and eel sauce. Delicious! 

  

I love that this meal was as much a feast for the eyes as it was for the taste buds! We finished off our dinner with a shared order of mochi ice cream ($4). The mango and strawberry flavors were both tasty. The also have a black sesame mochi that sounds intriguing!

  

Next time you’re in Vegas (with a car), head over to Naked Sushi for an awesome happy hour meal and friendly service! If you’re interested in seeing more restaurant reviews and/or healthy dining tips, please let me know!

Anniversary Dinner in Berkeley

After the last time I posted, Colby and I flew on a red eye flight from Kauai to Los Angeles and drove for 8 hours to Northern California. We made this drive on our 2 year anniversary! It was a rough drive after getting virtually no sleep on the flight, but I’m glad we got to spend the whole day together! Last year we were apart on our anniversary.

The day was made much better by meeting up for dinner with one of my best friends and her boyfriend. They took us to a wonderful restaurant in Berkeley, Gather. Gather is described as the “omnivore’s solution” and “a Micheal Pollan book come to life” because the food served is locally sourced and sustainably farmed. Our meal was beautiful and delicious!

The appetizer:

20130819-225137.jpg

It looked like a work of art!

20130819-225232.jpg

The pizzas were yummy too. I especially liked the sausage pizza with egg, but the zucchini pizza was delicious too!

20130819-225754.jpg

Yum yum yum! My friend never fails to pick an incredible restaurant to take us to in the Bay Area.

20130819-225909.jpg

After dinner we headed over to Ici for dessert and Jupiter for live music and silly conversation. I can’t believe we didn’t take any pictures together on this trip! I must have been delirious from lack of sleep. Here’s a shot of us from a few years ago when she visited me in Reno:

20130819-231320.jpg

This girl always makes me smile :)

The anniversary dinner Colby and I shared with our friends at Gather was only part of our trip. I’ll be posting a bit more about our travels to Kauai, Huntington Beach, and Reno. The vacation felt like a honeymoon! Being married to this man has been awesome, and now that he is finally finished with school, I am looking forward to more adventures together.

20130819-232020.jpg

Starbucks Breakfast

You can count on decent breakfast options almost anywhere since Starbucks Coffee is found all around the Western world.

20130804-105711.jpg

Conveniently, Starbucks provides calorie counts on display and nutrition brochures are readily available.

Here are some good options for breakfast at Starbucks:

20130804-110006.jpg

– Banana and almonds

– Egg white sandwich or wrap (my favorite is the one with turkey bacon and white cheddar)

– protein box (egg, roll, fruit, and cheese)

-Greek yogurt with honey and granola

-Oatmeal with dried fruit and nuts

20130804-110431.jpg

Pair any of these options with iced tea, coffee, or a skinny latte/ macchiato/ frapuccino. There you have it! Enjoy a breakfast with enough protein to hold you over until your next meal!

Make a Perfect Smoothie

Good morning! Today I took a trip to Jamba Juice to get inspired for the next week or two of recipes for Karolina’s Kitchen. I’ll be posting lots of healthy protein shake and smoothie concoctions for you!

Jamba Juice gave me some ideas to get started.

20130803-092740.jpg

There are lots of great choices on the menu- smoothies, breakfast wraps, oatmeal… But what caught my eye today were the yogurt parfait toppers.

20130803-092926.jpg

I like that these are part smoothie and part parfait. Frozen fruit is blended with nonfat greek yogurt and topped with granola and banana slices for a smoothie that has some extra bite to it. I picked the 12 oz berry topper. The chunky strawberry banana topper (with fruit and peanut butter) sounded great, too!

20130803-093211.jpg

Yum! As I was enjoying my snack, I checked out their “boosts” brochure. Boosts are options you can add to your smoothie to customize it. You can add soy or whey protein, Greek yogurt, chia seeds, caffeine, multivitamins, oats, or immunity boosting zinc and vitamin C to your smoothie. I’ll be putting boosts in my creations, too!

The boosts I plan to use are:
-Chia seeds
-Ground flax
-Whey protein isolate
-Greek yogurt
-Nut butter
-Oats
-Spinach

Check back for smoothie recipes soon! Until then here’s how to make a perfect smoothie every time:
– 1 – 1.5 cups of fruit
– 1/4 – 1/2 cup greek yogurt
– 1/2 – 1 cup liquid

Happy creating!

What to order at Chipotle

Chipotle is by far my favorite fast food restaurant! I love that you can build your meal exactly how you want it to be. Their barbacoa shredded beef is to die for. If you’re looking for a flavorful, filling, yet healthy meal, Chipotle is the place to be.

20130802-180117.jpg

Here’s my go to meal:

Bowl with brown rice, black beans, fajita veggies, barbacoa, double portion of mild salsa (pico de gallo), and shredded lettuce. Sometimes I leave off the rice or beans and add guacamole, but that costs a little more so I usually only get it when someone else is buying ;)

20130802-180246.jpg

If you want to build a healthy chipotle meal, here’s how to do it:

1. Pick a bowl or salad

2. Choose brown rice over white rice (or no rice!)

3. Pinto and black beans are both great options (or no beans!). Be sure to get the fajita veggies too!

4. Pick a protein. They’re all good options- chicken, carnitas, steak, barbacoa. The new tofu option is a little more processed, but may be a good choice for vegans and vegetarians.

5. Get any salsa you like, but skip the sour cream and cheese. Ask for a large helping of lettuce on there, too! For healthy fat, pay the extra $2 or so for a scoop of guacamole, or just skip it.

6. Say “no” to the chips and soda. Go for a free water cup and help yourself to the fresh lemons if you need some flavor in your agua.

This meal will be around 500 calories, full of fiber, protein, complex carbs, and vegetables. It will also taste amazing!

Protein House

Hey local (and visiting) Las Vegas health nuts! There’s a unique restaurant in town you should try out.

20130728-095224.jpg

Protein House is a fairly new restaurant in town catering to bodybuilders, fitness competitors, and athletes. It’s cool to see they don’t have a soda machine in this place! Just a water dispenser and assorted juices.

20130728-095853.jpg

The employees are all very fit! Don’t piss off the cook, he could probably crush you. The menus are printed on cards for you to customize.

20130728-100129.jpg

I pulled a breakfast card. I love that breakfast is served all day!

20130728-100247.jpg

Colby went for the burger card. Check out the Muscle Boy burger! 12 oz of bison!?

20130728-100435.jpg

While waiting for our order, we discreetly checked out the ultra fit clientele and flipped through some of the fitness and nutrition magazines stacked in the lounge area. I was really excited to get our food! This restaurant is such a neat place.

20130728-100754.jpg

The longer we waited, the more cool stuff I started to notice. Bottles and bottles of sriracha? That must be a sign of good taste. They also have homemade reduced sugar ketchup, sugar free syrup, Truvia, and other “guiltless”condiments out. The walks are lined with signed photos of fitness competitors.

When our food came out, it didn’t disappoint! We both loved our meals. I had the PH hash (bison, sweet potato, egg whites, and veggies).

20130728-103052.jpg

Colby had the delicious PH Burger (bison, fat free cheddar, egg whites, tomato, and lettuce on a whole wheat bun).

20130728-103208.jpg

The bison was very juicy and flavorful.. and how did they get the fat free cheese to melt so well? I’d definitely come back here for a healthy, tasty meal! I was impressed that Protein House doesn’t sacrifice flavor for nutrition. Check it out if you’re in the area.

Due Forni Date Night

I finally got Colby to take a break from studying for a date night! We had dinner at Due Forni and saw The Conjuring at the theater. It was a Groupon kind of night- $10 for $20 at the restaurant and $6 Fandango movie tickets. I love good deals! Both the movie and the restaurant were great. Go check them out!

Due Forni features two types of brick oven pizzas. The Neapolitan style is chewy, baked at 900 degrees for 90 seconds. The Roman is thin and crunchy, baked at 500 degrees for 3 minutes.

20130722-064746.jpg

The cocktails sounded really tasty. I wanted something citrusy, refreshing, not too sweet. Our waiter recommended the Sicilian sunrise, made with blood orange foam and a shot of limoncello.

20130722-064930.jpg

Last night was perfect for dinner on the patio. It’s rare to get such mild weather here in July! I think it was only 90 degrees out with a light breeze. The overcast 6pm lighting was perfect for pictures. My eye candy:

20130722-065302.jpg

And me!

20130722-065518.jpg

We split a creamy Caesar salad:

20130722-065602.jpg

Then Colby had to finish this drink that I’m holding. I should have picked white wine instead- this pretty cocktail was too sugary for me.

20130722-065736.jpg

The highlight of dinner was sharing the Due Forni Neapolitan pizza. The crust was nice and chewy with a bit of charred flavor from the oven. The sausage, roasted peppers, basil, and bufola mozzarella were great toppings!

20130722-070021.jpg

I love pizza! It’s definitely my favorite food even though eating it makes my stomach puff up to six-months-pregnant-size for a few hours afterward. That’s why I wore a loose fitting shirt and looked forward to relaxing in the movie theater after dinner! Maybe I’ll get over the $4.75 up charge and try the gluten free crust next time.

The movie wasn’t exactly relaxing. The Conjuring was terrifying! I was clenching Colby’s arm the entire time because the suspense never died down! Great movie. I’m glad we trusted the ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and checked it out. 90% positive reviews can’t be wrong!

Now that the Nevada Bar Exam is less than 2 weeks away, Colby and I will probably have our next date after it’s over. This also means our beach vacation is coming up! Follow me the next two weeks to see how I get ready to feel confident in a bikini.

20130722-071408.jpg

The preparation will consist of Crossfit for strength and conditioning, trampoline fitness for extra cardio, and 5-6 small, clean meals per day. Details soon :)

Honey Salt: Another Detox Friendly Restaurant Option

I had a blast hanging out with my sister yesterday at the spa! We took advantage of an awesome locals discount at the M Resort. Vegas locals: you can get all day access to the fitness center, pool, and spa facilities with the purchase of a manicure (<$27). Can't beat that!

I was starving after the spa!! Hard day, I know ;) My husband, sister, and I decided to check out Honey Salt for dinner. It's a cute little farm to table bistro in Summerlin. My sister and I had been there for their out-of-this-world bread pudding and brown bag apple pie a few months ago, but this time we were excited to try the dinner fare.

I was really excited to see seared sea scallops with truffle oil sauce, charred cauliflower, and cauliflower purée on the menu! I didn't have to sub out anything. Great dish!

20130616-185805.jpg

Colby had the burger, which is one of the highest rated burgers in Vegas! It’s beautiful and comes with its own little bottle of ketchup :)

20130616-185936.jpg

My sister had the special- a braised, bone-in pork chop with polenta and sautéed mushrooms. We all loved the food!

I’m excited to go back to try the heirloom tomato caprese salad with figs and shaved chocolate. It sounds heavenly!

Colby and I enjoyed some great hiking at Mt Charleston today after a hearty breakfast at Bagel Cafe:

20130616-190330.jpg

I should probably fill you in on a few thoughts I’ve had about the 21 Day Sugar Detox. Today is day 14.

I’ve been doing “ok” on the detox, but I have not been 100% strict. The guidelines are so legalistic. I’m at the point now where the rules are getting on my nerves and I just want to eat good, balanced meals all week and have treats on the weekends! Ultimately, my goal in doing this detox is to get to a cleaner diet overall. I think I’ve achieved that so far. I worry that if I keep on depriving myself of certain foods, it may lead to a massive binge food “retox” after I’m done “detox”ing. Have you ever had that experience? I feel like it happens often to people who severely restrict their food choices. I’ve fallen for that in the past with the Atkins diet and other restrictive eating patterns. Inevitably, I end up putting on lots of weight after coming off a strict eating plan. I’ve seen others have the same experience.

I don’t want to hate myself for having something delicious like this:

20130616-190900.jpg

Or this:

20130616-190922.jpg

Instead, I’ll shoot for eating clean and Paleo-ish for most meals, but then treat myself when I start to miss certain foods. Honestly, that probably won’t happen often since there are so many awesome healthy foods out there! I’ll keep on sharing recipes to convince you it’s true ;) Lots of times the healthier choice is also the tastier choice.

Dining Out on a Sugar Detox

Dinner and drinks on a sugar detox makes for a tricky date, but it’s doable. I love Yard House! They have the BEST menu and refreshing pear cider. Although I didn’t get my favorite things, like French fries and brownie sundae, the server was great about customizing my entree.

I got a turkey burger in a lettuce wrap with a side of steamed broccoli instead of fries. Pretty tasty, but I scarfed it down way too fast.

20130615-114957.jpg

I was still SO hungry after the burger and Colby was eating his fries and sliders SO slowly… I finally caved and had one of his sliders and a few fries. Whoops!

The craziest thing about it is that I immediately felt incredibly bloated after eating that small amount of bread and potatoes. I won’t be slipping up again during the 21 day detox. Let’s just call last night a little midway celebration!

This morning I met with a friend at Starbucks and was happy to be back on track and detoxing. My whole body feels much better when I’m avoiding grains and sugar!

20130615-115356.jpg

The next time I go out to eat, I’ll have to remember how much better it feels to have the right foods! I think the biggest pitfall is fixating on the “forbidden” food rather than focusing on how delicious the healthy option will be.

Here’s this morning’s challenge- my sister’s eggs Benedict on FRESHLY BAKED cheese bread…. Uggghhhh!

20130615-120020.jpg

I’ll be having it on paleo bread instead. It will be DELICIOUS either way!

20130615-120121.jpg