It’s the last WIAW that focuses on Fun, Food and Fitness, but after a few weeks it should become habit, right? It certainly seems to be going in that direction, and I can only thank Jenn at Peas and Crayons for this month’s fit-focused theme!

In the way of fitness, I’ve been getting back to a regular schedule with Jazzercise DVDs as well as these awesome workouts:

Last December I was looking for some ballet-inspired workouts (never danced, but I took ballet classes in college and loved it!) and came across Ballet Body by Leah Sarago. The workouts are challenging, to say the least, and uses body-weight resistance with ballet, pilates, yoga and other dance-inspired principles to strengthen and elongate your muscles. Leah focuses on form, so the moves look beautiful and graceful but it takes a LOT of strength and control. Sound like something you’d like to try? Visit Leah Sarago Fitness to find out more about these workouts, see a video trailer, and learn more about Leah!

I exercise in the mornings and have a cup or two of coffee before I start. Post-workout breakfasts have been looking something like this:

Refreshing and healthy!

This protein shake & fruit salad provides you with lots of vitamins, minerals, and protein, plus it’s low in fat. Also, if you’re not big on drinking your 6-8 glasses of water per day, this will definitely count towards it (about 14 ounces in the shake, plus some from the fruits…hey, that’s about two glasses right there!)

Lunch was tuna-tofu salad seasoned with Spike (flavorful no-sodium spice blend):

Those flax chips are nice and crunchy but to be honest, I didn’t like the tuna mix that much…Bumble Bee Tuna is pretty mushy.

For an afternoon snack, I had a couple of Carrot, Almond and Raisin Energy Bites from a recipe posted by Baking Serendipity (please go to her website to view her awesome recipe and photos!) I love the combination of freshly grated carrots and peanut butter, though I did substitute almond butter to suit my husband’s taste. I like the chewy texture of the oats right after I mixed them, and if you let them sit overnight they get softer from the moisture, but are still delicious:

You can pop this whole thing in your mouth!

Dinner was a quick mish-mash of crumbled sausage, mushrooms, onions, kale, tomatoes & carrots. I also cubed up some “soft” tofu (package says ‘soft’ but texture was pretty firm) with our first home-grown, prematurely picked cucumber and seasoned it with shoyu, ginger, and sesame oil:

Tofu, cucumber, shoyu (soy sauce,) fresh grated ginger and sesame oil. I was more anxious to eat that than the mish-mash. :)

All the food pics were taken with my LG phone camera but I miss my old phone which had a much better camera (Samsung Solstice.) I’ve been busy with other things and haven’t been devoting as much time to nicer food pics this week, but I assure you they will be back!

I know we don’t always lug around our SLRs, so what kind of phone do you have? Does it take great pics? What do you like/don’t like about your phone camera? (I can’t shut off the noise of my ‘shutter’…way too obvious when I’m taking a photo of restaurant food!)

Instead of frosting, top a generous slice of carrot apple ginger cake with tangy goat cheese drizzled with ginger agave syrup.

Hoppy Easter, everyone! I hope you are enjoying your beautiful Easter morning and  celebrating Easter in your own special way. I woke up a little early to test out a cake recipe I’ve only baked once before, and the reason I’ve only baked it once is because of the amount of oil and sugar in the recipe. It’s a delicious cake spiked with freshly grated ginger, and tastes best right out of the oven, but it seems crazy to have 1 1/3 cups of oil in a cake recipe! I wanted to keep the flavor but reduce the fat, so I did a bit of improvising, thanks to a tip from a Cooking Light contest winner over 10 years ago. Instead of using oil or applesauce (as the substitute,) a jar of carrot baby food was used to add moisture. Clever, isn’t it? Hoping it will work with this recipe, I substituted a 6-oz jar of sweet potatoes baby food for almost 1 cup of oil. Because of the added sweetness, I reduced the sugar from 1 1/2 cups to 1 cup. I also added some apples and a little cinnamon, which can be increased if you want a “warmer” flavor, or omitted if you prefer a spicier, ginger taste.

My husband and I had this for Easter breakfast and I was happy to see he went back for seconds! The cake is moist and fragrant, and the tangy goat cheese is the perfect compliment to the light sweetness of the carrot cake . I think I’m ready for another slice…

Carrot Apple Ginger Cake

2 cups spelt flour (or all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 cups shredded carrots
2 cups peeled and chopped apple (about 1 large)
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil
1 6-oz jar sweet potato baby food
4 eggs, lightly beaten
3-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated (use a 2-inch piece for less intense ginger)
2/3 cup chopped walnuts or pecans
goat cheese
ginger agave syrup (inspired by Veggie Nook’s recipe here)

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour a bundt pan or two 8-inch round cake pans.

In a large mixing bowl, mix dry ingredients until well-combined. In another larger bowl, combine carrots, apple, sugar, oil, sweet potato bay food, eggs and ginger. Add half of dry ingredients to carrot mixture, mix well. Add remaining dry ingredients and combine well, but do not overmix. Sprinkle chopped walnuts or pecans in bottom of bundt pan or two 8-inch round cake pans. Fill pan(s) and bake for 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted comes out clean. Let cool and remove cake from pan(s). Top with a dollop of got cheese and drizzle with agave syrup, add extra nuts, if desired.

Cute min-bundt cakes are just the right size for one.

sweet and spicy ginger agave syrup