Surf, turf + an awesome peach and manchego salad

Hi! How’s your day going? Hope you’re having a great one so far <3 I’m blown away by your amazing support with the eBook and so thankful to all of you. I hope you love it! The price will jump from $8 to $12 next week, so grab yours now for the sale price if you’re interested in checking it out.

Last night was pretty laid back.

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(When did this tiny baby get so big?)

We FINALLY watched The Mindy Project (where has this been all my life?!) and Caro predicted the weather.

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When she quickly scurries over to one of us, trembling, one of two things is bound to happen: fireworks or rain. It was the latter, and San Diego rejoiced for the total of four minutes that it sprinkled.

Dinners have been exceptionally delicious lately.

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I was in a bit of a dinner rut, and we found ourselves making the same chicken meals over and over. It was time to switch it up a bit, and as usual, I felt inspired from walking around Whole Foods. In Tucson, I went at least once a week, but here I find that it’s a rare treat since it’s a little farther (and TJs is much less expensive). The beautiful salmon was calling to me, so I thought it would be a great night for surf and turf.

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Grassfed steak for the Pilot, buttery salmon, roasted cauliflower,

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(sliced and seasoned with olive oil, salt, pepper, curry powder, garam masala, cayenne and cumin before roasting)

potatoes, a baked sweet onion (with butter, salt and pepper)

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and this awesome peach and manchego salad.

Instead of the usual chopped veggie salad route, I grabbed a couple of fresh peaches, diced them up, and added them to spinach along with fresh grated manchego, chopped basil and fig vinaigrette (bottled from Whole Foods). Perfection.

Last night’s dinner was cooked by this beautiful appliance. A chicken sausage marinara sauce,

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(chicken sausage; 1 sweet onion, diced; 2 cloves of minced garlic; 1/4 cup fresh basil; 1 red bell pepper chopped; 1 large can whole tomatoes; 1 can tomato paste; salt, pepper, oregano and a splash of red wine)

atop gnocchi or spaghetti squash, along with roasted broccoli.

It was a much-needed day off of teaching, but I’m back into it today with Zumba!

Current workout song obsession, from my spin playlist the other night:


Ahhh it just makes me so happy. It would be awesome for running, too 🙂

Have a wonderful day <3



Any awesome dinners lately? What’s your favorite thing to make in the slow cooker?



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  1. The color of that salmon is BRILLIANT!! It must have been super fresh! That salad sounds delicious as well. Sweet peaches and salty cheese….yum!

  2. Indulging on some za after my half-marathon was incredible. Maybe not the most gourmet, but definitely a treat =).

    I made meatballs in the slow cooker once and they turned out wonderfully! I really want to use mine more, I just need to work on the whole pre-planning part…maybe an October goal?!?

  3. Ahhh that peach salad looks amazing! I just had moussaka for the first time recently and am excited to make that soon. I use my slow cooker all the time for making tacos! The meat comes out so good! Also I am loving that song too! 🙂

  4. Oh my beloved slow Cooker…I love Thee. I’ve been making pork ribs marinated in coconut aminos, stevia and salt. It’s delicious!! If you het a fatty cut especially it’s gorgeous.

  5. Well, my awesome dinners include some veggie pasta, lots of veggies on top and turkey meatballs. However, my husband and I have been baking fish with salsa lately, and that’s another favorite. We don’t have a ton of variety, but the dinners we do eat are great. I need to get more into making salmon. Have a great Wednesday! Congrats on the ebook.

  6. My dog does the same thing as Caro when there are fireworks or a storm. Poor things. Your food looks amazing! I use my slowcooker for chili and tons of chicken dishes. Such a great kitchen tool.

  7. I bought a bottle of fig balsamic and have been putting it on EVERYTHING. Over plain yogurt and fruit, on salads, to finish roasted veggies, grain bowls. I can’t get enough. Best impulse purchase ever!

  8. I can’t wait to make that marinara! Looks delish! My favorite slow cooker recipe as of late has been a simple one: BBQ pulled pork. But I put it on top of a waffle and it takes it to another level 🙂

  9. Despite my great love of cheese, I’ve still never tried manchego! I love salmon, but my husband isn’t a big fan so I feel bad when I make it… I guess I could do what you do, but if we’re cooking steak I’d want that too. Maybe we could split both.

  10. I have read that dogs fear rain because the accompanying lightning can cause a static charge in their fur (and fireworks sound like lightning) and it causes them great anxiety. I think you can buy a special coat that they can wear, which discharges the fur. Poor sweetie!

  11. I made a fried green tomato and sauteed pepper sandwich that was heavenly!

  12. That dinner sounds wonderful. I think I need to pick up some salmon myself this week! I’m always afraid of the expensive cuts of meat at Whole Foods, but it’s probably time to bite the bullet and try some. 🙂

    • Be careful…I bit the bullet and bought decent meat at whole foods and now I can’t go back. Salmon is the best example I’ve found – I bought some wild salmon at something like $19/lb on sale there once and it was the most glorious salmon ever. Now no other salmon will do. <–the struggle.

  13. I love making a turkey chili with sweet potatoes and ALL the veggies! On a totally related note since I’ve loved reading about your new life in San Diego, you should check out November Project there! It’s an awesome free workout community that meets in 16 cities across the country (I do the one in Boston) and they have a San Diego chapter. It’s so much and you just have to show up one time to understand how special it is 🙂

  14. I loved the eBook! I bought it last night and flew through it – so many helpful tips and advice. Well done Gina!

  15. I really want to make vegetarian recipes in a slow cooker this fall! First I actually need a slow cooker and then I need to find veg recipes for it 🙂 Also my mom’s dog used to be TERRIFIED of lightening and rain so we got her a Thunder Vest. It seemed to help a little bit but poor thing would shake and shiver for hours, even if it was just really cloudy.

  16. My dog is great with thunderstorm warnings. She’s cool with the rain (from inside only!) but the thunder makes her terrified…and her stance on being terrified is attack first! She jumps up and barks at the sky. Funny, until it happens at 2 AM and I’m sure there is an ax murderer in the house until I see lightening!

    Your video made me think of the new video just out from my favorite music obsession right now: Home Free Vocal Band. (all voices, no instruments = Pitch Perfect with hot guys) This one seems like the kind of thing you would like as well! They collaborated with Peter Hollans here too! (Also check out their version of All About the Bass – excellent and fun where this one is more heart strings. Hope you love it Gina!

    • Fitnessista says:

      omgggg i’m obsessed. now i have to make my way through all their videos 🙂 thank you for sharing!!

      • Yay!! I love this group. Make sure you watch Ring of Fire too. Over 3 million views. And they’re in tour. Seeing them in Nov!! So excited!

  17. Your dinners look fantastic! I am also in a dinner rut. I love my slow cooker and I just broke it out to make a South African Peanut Stew to switch things up…YUM!!!

  18. Oh man I love that Geranimo song! Thanks for sharing!

    That’s amazing you have a little weather predictor! Your puppies are too cute!

  19. I make this thing called The Gourd in the slow cooker. Noble Hops in Tucson has it on their menu & I loved it so much i had to recreate it. It’s just carrots, zucchini, spaghetti squash and marinara. So delicious!

  20. I had almost the identical dinner last night! Wild caught salmon, brown rice and a mix of cauliflower and asparagus.

  21. That salmon looks fantastically delicious… I’ve been in a chicken rut too, though I did make some chicken parm last night, so it was a bit of a change from the usual grilled chicken with veggies.

    I love making pot roast in the slow cooker. It always turns out so tender, and the vegetables soak up all of the delicious flavor!

  22. Last night we felt inspired/like procrastinating so we did chicken/zuchinni/pepper kabobs on the grill and I made homemade from scratch butternut squash soup (VEGAN). YUM!!! This was our first try at chicken on the grill and we quickly learned how unquickly it takes to cook chicken on a stick. 😛 Thankfully it all came out great, especially the soup since the squash was grown 10 miles from our house. 🙂

  23. I loved your whole spin playlist Monday night, actually! I was thisclose to asking you where you found a couple of those remixes because I am on a hunt for fun music to add to my half marathon playlist.

  24. That peach salad looks so delicious!

    I’ve been loving the crockpot for dry beans lately. It is so easy…throw them in and cover with water and viola. 4 hours later you have chickpeas or whichever beans you prefer. No BPA cans!

  25. Salsa chicken is a favorite around our house! Chicken breasts, taco seasoning and a bottle of salsa. Slow cooked. Done!

    Loooove that song!

  26. I’ve totally been in a dinner rut too! When in doubt… get Pizza Fusion! 😉 You know it’s time to get back on track when you’re craving veggies!

    Congrats on the ebook! It’s fantastic!

  27. I haven’t had any great whole dinners lately, but over the weekend I threw a zillion veggies in the oven to roast and it has been a lovely part of my dinner every night since then. Roasted veggies are the best!

  28. LOVE that photo of you,Livi & Bella!!! Gina from Mass

  29. Yum, I love stone fruit salads!

  30. Your peach and manchego salad looks absolutely wonderful! I may just have to replicate that one here soon. Congrats on the new ebook!

  31. I just returned from a 2 week California holiday, restocked the fridge but still too jet lagged to get cooking. I introduced my mum to double portions of salmon at Aldi a year ago, now she cooks it more than I do. I’m sure the rain was much appreciated in San Diego even if it was just four minutes. I didn’t realise how bad of a drought San Diego and Los Angeles are in till I visited last week. Say Geronimo, good to see Shepard are getting some exposure in the US. Great song, we were on overload with it at the start of the year, radio, TV, morning show hosts singing it.

  32. You are such an amazing cook! Your husband is seriously so freaking lucky that he reaps the rewards of your kitchen skills. I wish I could afford to pay someone to cook me all the meals you make on a regular basis. Life would be COMPLETE!

  33. I just picked up some salmon yesterday after a long hiatus and it was amazing! I love roasting it with coconut oil, lemon, and fresh dill. So good! I’ll have to remember the surf and turf! My husband loves steak but I”d much rather have salmon 🙂

  34. That sounds like such a great combo for the salad–gotta take advantage of summer peaches while we still can! Rain is in the forecast for tomorrow up here in NorCal, but I won’t believe it until I see it!

  35. I don’t use the crockpot a lot – really need to. But I love making steel cut oatmeal. Then I have it for the week for breakfast. 😉

    Love reading everyone’s ideas!

    • Fitnessista says:

      i was going to try that with apples tonight! i always seem to burn oats in the slow cooker though

      • are you using oats or steel cut oats? I only use the steel cut oats when I do them in the crock pot….on low. It does kind of stick to the bottom, like rice sometimes, but it doesn’t burn. 2 cups of oats, 4 cups water (makes a lot, so you may want to cut in half). I add cinnamon, dried fruit and that’s it. All of it goes in the fridge. Then I put in a bowl, with almond milk and microwave it. I add some nut butter >> so creamy and sooo good.

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