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For the past year or so, I’ve noticed a growing trend in coconut water. I’ve seen it mostly at the yoga studio, but also randomly out in the streets. About 6 months ago, I figured I’d give it a try. It’s all natural, filled with potassium and electrolytes, and I’m an “athlete” so… I need those things. I went and bought myself my first (and last) zico coconut water. I’m not sure what I was expecting, but after taking a sip I was thinking, “people actually like this stuff”? It tasted like I was drinking someone else’s sweat out of a bottle. No thank you!!

Fast forward to a month or so ago and I see an advert (on the side of a trash can…potential foreshadowing) for lemonade coconut water. For those who don’t know me, I am a sucker for lemonade, more specifically in the Arnold Palmer form, but you get my point. It costs $3.29 though, am I willing to waste that much money on something that may be disgusting? The answer is no!

So three weeks ago my friends and I run the heartbreak hill half marathon, where we all almost die of heat stroke. The race started at 7:30am and it was already 80 degrees! Needless to say we were all a little dehydrated. The next day, I was still feeling the effects and mentioned this to my friend Erin. She mentions that she had a lemonade coconut water right after and it really helped her hydrate quickly. I tell her my “sweat in a box” story and she says she had the same experience, but assures me this one is different. Okay, I think, I trust her judgement. So I go over to Whole Foods at lunch and get myself a vita coco lemonade coconut water. Then the moment of truth…ugh sweat mixed with fake lemonade. I quickly denounce our friendship, and drink the rest of my beloved Arnold Palmer. I did bring the container home though because I can’t bring myself to throw it away.

A few days later the humidity returns, and it’s really hot! I just did a full tour of Harvard Stadium with November Project and then biked home. I can already feel the effects of dehydration setting in, so I think, let’s just take a swig. Hmmmm, not as bad as the first time. Another swig, okay, maybe this stuff has to be old to be good. I do that for the next few workouts and lo and behold I actually “like” it. So now Erin and I can be friends again (thank God) and I’ve learned that coconut water is like wine and cheese, it must be aged properly to live up to its full potential.

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The Hubs and I currently have a British house guest and Wednesday was his first night “at home”. I wanted to make him dinner, but I was nervous about trying out a completely new dish. I figured I couldn’t go wrong with grilled cheese, and from a past conversation with DB, I knew he loved pesto. Hence the Caprese Grilled Cheese with Arugula Pesto. I’m not sure if he’s the best critic (he’s way too kind to ever say anything bad about my cooking) but he ate it and seemed to enjoy it! In the future, I’d make it more like a panini style sandwich to eliminate the oil and butter, but I will definitely make it again. There was also extra pesto which I just popped in the freezer for use in a later meal.

This week’s focus will be on vegetable preservation and storage. It’s a holiday week and both of our birthdays, so we have a lot going on and won’t be home much for dinner. I would hate to waste all the wonderful veggies, so I’d like to be able preserve as many as I can. I came across this website Still Tasty about a year ago and it’s awesome! You can search almost any vegetable (or fruit) and it will tell you how best to store it and for how long and also how to blanch or prepare for freezing.  It’s a great asset when you find yourself in a bind.

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