Friday, January 30, 2009

Quick vegetarian chili

1/2 cup onion
2 tsp coconut oil (or other oil
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder
1/2 cup chopped bell pepper
bit of minced garlic
1 cup of cooked white beans (or any bean, really)
1/2 cup TVP, hydrated in a cup of boiling water
1 can of diced or chopped tomatoes with juice
S&P to taste

In a medium saucepan, heat the oil. Add the onions, spices, garlic, and bell pepper and saute for a few minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients and simmer for 15-20 minutes. Add Salt and Pepper to taste.


I like this topped with a bit of cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream.

Banana Oatmeal

I wanted a change up from my usual pumpkin oats. Hannaford had a sale on ripe bananas the other day - I got 2 pounds of bananas for 40 cents! So I just threw those into the freezer.

Decided to make oatmeal with one today:

40 grams of rolled oats (1/2 cup)
1/2 of a ripe banana
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup water
pinch of salt.
Boil the water and all all ingredients. Turn heat low medium low and cook, stirring to incorporate the banana. The ripe banana will kind of melt into the oatmeal.

Add-ins today:

13 grams protein powder
2 tbsp wheatberries
1 tsp natural peanut butter
5 dark chocolate chips, just for fun!

Total calories approx 350

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Low fat, high protein muffins

Here is a versatile recipe concocted by John. These make big jumbo muffins, like the size you get at Dunkin Donuts! Only a lot less calories!

3/4 c. white flour
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1/4 c. oat fiber (or replace this with more wheat flour)
2 scoops designer whey protein powder (natural)
3/4 c. sugar
1 T. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
optional: 1/2 t. cinnamon and 1/2 t. nutmeg

1 c. milk
1/2 c. unsweetened applesauce
1/2 c. liquid egg whites (or 3 real egg whites)

Add in Options
1 c. blueberries, chocolate chips, or whatever your heart desires

Mix dry ingredients in large bowl, and mix liquid ingredients in a separate bowl. Pour liquids into dry and gently fold together until mostly mixed. Then fold in blueberries (or substitute). Spoon into 12 standard muffin cups or 6 jumbo muffin cups. Bake at 400 for 20 mins (std.) or 28 mins (jumbo) or until golden brown.

Nutritional info of basic muffin:

Cal: 260
Fat: 1 gram
Carbs: 37 grams
Fiber: 7 grams
Protein: 14 grams

Calculate for any Optional items. Adding the blueberries adds only about 20 calories per muffin! Compared to Dunkin Donuts reduced fat blueberry muffin at 400 calories!

* Note, the oat fiber only adds about 5 calories, so if you sub with wheat flour, adjust your calorie count for it.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Wheat berry success!

I found some wheat berries to try with breakfast. I just cooked them on the stove like brown rice yesterday, and have them stored in the fridge. Here they are sprinkled on top of my pumpkin oats:

The wheat berries are kind of like steel cut oats, but they have a shell to them almost. Kind of like the pop when you bite into a pomegranate seed, and the chew of steel cut oats. I like them.

John had some french toast made with my home made wheat bread, which is almost gone! Topped with unsweetened coconut and maple syrup:

Lunch was a tuna salad with lemon pepper wrap on a multigrain flatout. With a small banana spread with 2 tsp of natural peanut butter. Yum!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Lentils, fun shopping and pie!

I was on the hunt for wheat berries, so we decided to have breakfast in Saratoga Springs at a local coffee shop, where I had an oat bran bagel and some lovely Peruvian coffee.

After that we hit up a natural food store where I found some wheatberries, spelt berries, unsweetened coconut and brown rice protein powder! Yippee!
Lunch at home included tuna salad on my home made wheat bread, plus a delicious anjou pear.

Afternoon snack was the usual latte and clementines!

Dinner was a quick throw together of lentils with sauteed spices and pureed onions, served over cooked brown rice. Quite tasty! Roasted winter mix seasoned with curry seasonings on the side.

John made a lemon meringue pie, which I had a taste of. Tart and delicious!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Tea for 2 and fritatta

Started off the day with yummy pumpkin oats.
1/2 cup oats cooked with 1 tsp brown sugar, pumpkin pie spice.
After cooking I stirred in 1/2 cup pumpkin, protein powder and topped with toasted pecans. The pecans were a little over toasted, but I kind of like them that way.

Mid morning I had tea. I quite like this kind. You can see my hubby's legs in the back ground. As I was taking the picture he decided to come in and mess with my shots.

Dinner was going to be brown rice and lentils, but after watching a Netflix movie, it was already past dinner, so I just decided on an easy fritatta. I had a cooked potato which I chopped and pan fried a bit. Then added the eggs and cooked for a couple minutes to set the bottom. Slid under the broiler and topped with cheese (everything's better with cheese!!). Side of steamed broccoli. Dinner in 10 minutes!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Latte Dah

My favorite afternoon snack! Lattes!!

While it isn't the dream espresso machine I would like to have at home, this little one does a great job at foaming milk.

Lori's Miel Latte: espresso, steamed milk, a spiral of honey and dusted with cinnamon.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Remoulade's in New Orleans

All of my rechargeable batteries need charging, so no pics today of my food! However, I still have some more New Orleans meals LOL.

This was at Remoulade on Bourbon St. It's the less expensive, casual version of Arnauds.
This was probably my least favorite meal for a couple reasons.

I had a sampler of
file gumbo, crawfish pie, and jambalaya.

The soup was good standard gumbo, and the crawfish pie was quite good. The jambalaya was uninspired and tasted very bland. It was almost like spanish rice, not a good tasty jambalaya.

My sister had a sampler which had turtle soup:

Followed by a natchatosis meat pie and crawfish etouffe

She like the soup and the etouffe, but the meat pie was way too salty.

This meal was okay, but as we got up to leave, I caught movement out of the corner of my eye against the wall, and saw a roach! Yuck.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Pumpkin Cream of Wheat - Giant Breakfast!

Today's breakfast ended up way bigger than I thought it would be! I decided on Cream of Wheat for a change. So, I took a cue from Monday's nutty nugget oatmeal and combined:

1/4 cup Nutty Nuggets (store brand GrapeNuts)
3 tablespoons slow cook Cream of Wheat
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp brown sugar
1 1/2 cups water

After cooking, I stirred in
13 grams of Designer Whey unflavored protein powder
1/2 cup canned pumpkin

Topped with:
9 grams of toasted pecans
dollop of homemade cranberry sauce.

The bowl was huge and incredibly filling. Served with my usual cafe au lait and brekkie weighed in at a little over 500 calories, which is a bit more than usual. Normally I do around 400-430.
Definitely was an interesting twist, as the cream of wheat is much creamier (duh) than the oatmeal. And I am liking the wheaty taste of the Nutty Nuggets.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Banana Chocolate Protein Bars

A new recipe!


1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup mashed banana (I had an 89 gram nana)
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup milk (I used 1%)
1 cup oat bran
1.5 cups whole wheat flour
1 scoop (28 grams) protein powder (I have Designer Whey unflavored currently)
1 tsp baking powder
pinch of salt
45 grams dark chocolate chips (1/3 cup or so)

Preheat oven to 350. Line a 9x9 pan with parchment paper. In a stand mixer, cream the sugar, banana, and eggs until light and fluffy. Add in the vanilla and milk and blend.
In a separate bowl, combine the oat bran, wheat flour, protein powder, salt, and baking powder. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry mix to the wet until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
Pour into the prepared baking dish evenly.

Bake for 30-35 minutes until a toothpick comes out clean. Don't over bake.
Using the parchment paper as a sling, remove from pan and let cool on a rack.
When cool, slice into 9 pieces.
Store in a covered container in the fridge.

Using my ingredients, the stats are:
211 calories, 4 grams of fat, 35 grams of carbs, 3.5 grams fiber, 8 grams of protein.

These are very, very good. The longer they sit, the more moist they become and the chocolate has a wonderful flavor with the banana. A great snack with a cup of coffee or tea.

Protein Pancakes and Almond Joy Cream of Wheat

Breakfast this morning is one of my other favorites! Protein Pancakes with Blueberry Sauce. I have tweaked this recipe a bit, and now I add protein powder (1/2 scoopish), and today I did 1/4 tsp of baking powder. These puffed up like crazy! Yummers. You can actually see the steam from the blueberries. Served with cafe au lait in my favorite mug. (Go Broncos!)

John had an interesting breakfast today. He decided to make an Almond Joy Cream of Wheat. Cream of wheat topped with unsweetened coconut (toasted), dark chocolate chips, and toasted pecans. It sounded so good I wanted to take a picture of it!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Cafe Beignet

Another New Orleans meal! Good thing we don't live near here, or I wouldn't be down over a 100 pounds!

Cafe Beignet on Bourbon Street. This was Sunday night, and it was quite chilly (to Southerners, we were fine LOL) - so no one was out. There was a jazz trio called Steamboat Willie there, and we basically got a private concert, which was way cool.

I wanted breakfast for dinner, so I ordered a cheese omelet with grits on the side, plus a lovely warm coffee:

My sister had a warm muffaletta - and this was a half portion!!

Dessert was a wonderful strawberry shortbread tart. Two of my favorite things, shortbread and strawberries! Yum!

Nutty nuggets and tuna

For some reason, I bought the store brand of Grape Nuts, which are called Nutty Nuggets. I really don't eat cold cereal, with the exception of granola (which I mix into yogurt). But, this stuff doesn't have sugar (unlike official Grape Nuts), and a good amount of fiber.
So, thought I would try my pumpkin oats with Nutty nuggets added.

1/3 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup Nutty Nuggets
1 cup water
1 tsp brown sugar
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice
pinch of salt.
After cooking, I stirred in protein powder and 1/2 cup pumpkin. Topped with a dollop of cranberry sauce. This breakfast looks a lot like what I have every other day LOL!
The Nutty Nuggets definitely gave the oatmeal more chewiness, and a thicker texture, which I found quite appealing - plus a different flavor that I can't quite put my finger on. Maybe more 'wheaty'.

Lunch was tuna salad on my wonderful wheat bread (see post below). With a side of mesclun mix and some clems. Looks so fresh and healthy!

Honey Wheat Bread

I baked a loaf of fresh Honey Wheat bread yesterday. I won't post the recipe, as it came from a book, and I don't know the netiquette for posting that kind of recipe. I did add 1 scoop of Honeyville Oat fiber to it to boost the fiber content since it uses bread flour and whole wheat flour. I love using the bread machine to make the dough - it's so easy!

Here is the nice dough ball:

After shaping and ready for the 2nd rise:

After baking! Funny how it rose a little uneven, not sure why. You can see the book I used for the recipe, too.

This bread is wonderfully moist with a tender crumb. John is very excited to try making french toast with it tomorrow. I will be having some with my tuna salad for lunch!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

SoyJoy Bars

I thought I would give a SoyJoy bar a try today. They seem pretty innocent, and made from all natural ingredients. I don't always buy it when a company says "all natural" on their labels (ProMax, I'm looking in your direction!!).
However, SoyJoy has soybean powder, sugar, raisins, butter, eggs - pretty much normal ingredients. I was kind of surprised.

It's a tiny thing, though. This is after I took a bite, but I think it is about the size of 1 Twix bar.

It looks like I ate the bar at midnight, but I really ate it right after the package photo above. The difference between flash on (this pic) and daylight (above pic).

The flavor was pretty good. Kind of cake-like, but firmer. A little sweet though. It only has 4 grams of protein for 130 calories, but way better than a 100 cal snack pack, right?
At least in a pinch I know I could grab this if I don't want a 200 calorie Zone bar.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Red Fish Grill in New Orleans

Probably the best meal we had over the weekend. We went for lunch.
We both wanted a poboy or gumbo. Well, the lunch menu had a combo option, so we were all set!

I got the BBQ Shrimp Po-Boy
Crispy fried Louisiana shrimp tossed in a peppery butter sauce. Served on a Leidenheimer po-boy loaf with lettuce, tomatoes and red onion.
The soup was the de jour, which was a shrimp and corn chowder. Excellent.

My sister had BBQ Oyster Po-Boy
Freshly shucked P&J oysters flash fried and tossed in a Crystal BBQ sauce. Served on a Leidenheimer po-boy loaf with red onions, lettuce, tomatoes and housemade blue cheese dressing. Paired with Alligator Sausage & Seafood Gumbo.

For dessert, we preordered the Double Chocolate Bread Pudding
A Red Fish Grill Signature...
Rich dark and semisweet chocolate bread pudding served with white and dark chocolate ganache and chocolate almond bark. It was divine!

The aftermath:

Bean and Bacon Soup

I am slowly venturing into Beanland, since I have found some that I like the taste of. Kidney beans and black beans are definitely out, but small white beans are okay. I decided to make some soup today for lunch. Who knew that you could cook beans super fast in the pressure cooker? I didn't! I will definitely try some more recipes with beans knowing how quick the pressure cooker gets them done.
Anyway, I cooked up 1/2 pound of small white beans with some salt, pepper, and a bay leaf.

I reserved half of those beans in the fridge for another day. For John and I for lunch I put in 1 cup of beans and 2 cups of veggie broth in a saucepan. Added a bit of S&P. Brought to a boil and used a potato masher to smush the beans up.
I then cooked up 2 slices of bacon.
After dividing the soup into 2 bowls, I crumbled 1 slice of bacon into each bowl.
Calories were about 230, 6 grams of fat, 15 grams of protein, 18 (!!!) grams of fiber. I wish the soup was a bit thicker, but either less broth or more beans would probably take care of that.
Quite tasty and pretty easy with the cooked beans.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

CC's Coffee house

Anyone who knows me knows that I loves me some coffee!

CC's - or Community Coffee House is a Louisiana chain that started in New Orleans. They have some great coffee and lattes - and about the only healthy food I had all weekend!
A yummy whole wheat bagel, paired with a skim milk latte.

Dragos in the French Quarter

Dragos in New Orleans.
This is a newer location for Dragos into the French Quarter.
They are the home of the charbroiled oysters. That actually didn't seem appealing to me, as I tried oysters once and didn't care for them.
However, my sister likes oysters, so she got some and I tried them.

They were fabulous! You could taste the chargrilling and they had the most wonderful buttery garlic sauce on them, plus parmesan cheese. Soaking up the sauce with the french bread on the side was heaven!

For dinner, I had the
Large Gulf shrimp seasoned with fresh herbs and spices, served the “New Orleans Way” with French roll and a baked potato.

These were quite spicy instead of regular bbq shrimp, which is more garlicky and buttery. This dish had a ton of blackening seasoning. Quite good. The potato on the side was okay, it was on the edge of it's holding time.

My sister had the Shuckee Duckee
Blackened duck breast over linguini pasta
with oysters and cream sauce.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Cafe du Monde

Back from the trip to New Orleans. What a great time! If you have never been, you must go - it is so much more than Bourbon street.

The very first stop we made was, of course, Cafe du Monde for warm beignets with piles of powdered sugar and cafe au lait. For those that have never had a beignet, they are like a french donut. A cross between a cake and yeast donut. Dense, moist and a bit chewy, but with pockets of air in them, and no hole.