Tag Archives: cooking

A little busy

7 May

You’ll have to forgive me if this post is a little short/lacking in healthy eating inspiration. You see, I’m kind of busy today. Why?

Well, because of this.IMG_0999

Also this….

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And this….

IMG_1006Oh yeah, and this too.

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Today I’m catering a birthday dinner for 20 people. In between 2 weeks of full-time teaching (yes, I may just be insane). I’m having a blast, but it’s a lot of work. The pictures you see are just some of the things I made last night (maybe that’s why I was up past midnight? Disappointed smile).

Anyway, I hope you understand if I miss a post tomorrow and don’t come up for air until Monday…I might come up with something, but no promises (after all, there’s still a Mother’s Day breakfast I have to make too)!

The menu is a delicious combo of appetizers and sweet foods…I know it will be a real crowd-pleaser. I promise to post at least one recipe out of the deal, sound good?

Hope everyone’s enjoying the weekend, and just in case I don’t make it on here tomorrow, Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there who are reading this (especially my Mom….hi mom!)….you all inspire me daily with your generosity, encouragement and sacrifice!

What are you making/doing for Mom this year?

Supper and a Summary

13 Jan

I wasn’t going to post about supper tonight, but it tasted so delicious I decided to share with you all. (If you don’t want to read about my dinner but want to hear about my summary of the 5 Day Fast Forward, scroll down) I was looking for something that would come together quickly, as I was doing some baking tonight (which I will share tomorrow, I promise!) and didn’t finish up until about 6:00. I went to one of my go-to healthy, delicious and filling meals: whole wheat pasta with some sort of meat and a whole bunch of veggies…depending on my mood, what’s in my fridge, and time constraints, it changes, but here’s what I made tonight. Looks good, right?

So, I ALWAYS start with garlic (those who know me know I can’t get enough). The meat tonight was this really tasty turkey/chicken sausage with spinach and feta we buy at Costco (we threw out the packaging so I can’t share the brand name with you). I thinly sliced up the sausage, chopped the garlic, as well as some red bell pepper and a portabello mushroom. In a pan over medium-high heat, I heated 1 tsp of olive oil and added all of the above, as well as some sliced regular mushrooms and a sprinkle of chili flakes.

Meanwhile, I cooked 2 ounces (enough to make about a cup cooked) of whole wheat rotini in salted boiling water. Now 1 cup of pasta isn’t a lot, right? But look at the picture…there’s only a cup of pasta in there….I add so many veggies it bumps up the portion size. That’s on of my favourite healthy  cooking tips – while I know that portion size is an important part of weight loss/maintenance, I love to eat big meals. On the Weight Watchers plan, most veggies have 0 points….so adding a lot of vegetables to a meal is an easy way to bump up the serving size (and nutrition factor) without adding a lot of extra calories.

I also blanched some broccoli rabe/rapini  in the microwave….if you’ve never heard of it, it looks like tiny broccoli heads with lots of leafy greens…it can be kind of bitter, so blanching it in some water for a couple of minutes before using it takes the edge off (I learned that from Rachael Ray). To the veggies/sausage, I added the rapini, as well as about a tbsp of frozen tomato paste (freezing in blobs is a great way to prevent it from going to waste after you open a can) and a rather sad-looking tomato I found in the fridge. I let this simmer away, seasoning with salt and pepper and adding a bit of the starchy cooking water from the pasta (another Rachael Ray tip). Towards the end, I added a splash of white wine vinegar and let it simmer some more, then added the drained, cooked pasta and a generous handful of fresh spinach (I still have some left over!). I let it heat through, and dinner was served (and yes, I ate the entire portion in the photo above….it was mostly veggies). I don’t know if I was craving carbs after the last 5 days, but this dinner sure hit the spot….it tasted delicious!

Now….onto my summary of my results and thoughts after the 5 Day Fast Forward. If you remember, I told you when I started that I wasn’t going to weigh myself. Now I sort of wish I had…the plan promises that you can lose up to 8 pounds in 5 days…I would say emphasis on the “up to.” I have tried on my skinny jeans a couple of times (last night, this morning and after school today….a little obsessive, I know) and they are not as loose as I would like. In fact, they feel barely any different than when I started :(.  I have to tell you, I was pretty bummed out and depressed last night after the first try-on. So what are my thoughts after the fact?

First of all , the positives. This 5 day period helped me reduce my focus on food, which is good for me….as food consumes a lot of my time and mental space. Also, since I wasn’t eating a lot of food, I really made an effort to eat slower – putting my fork down and/or taking a drink between each bite. This is something I’d like to continue, as I know I often eat too quickly. I also enjoyed eating things that I know are healthy (eggs, almonds, almond butter) but I normally don’t eat because of their higher calorie count.

I think that maybe I should have reduced my physical activity during the 5 days. I really noticed my energy levels were low, and I should have listened to my body more closely. Except for when I took a day off yesterday, I did all my normal gym workouts, as well as a few sessions of cross country skiing (a new hobby I’m taking up…more to come on that in the coming days). I half wonder if this sabotaged my results.

I would still like to lose a few more pounds…even without weighing myself, I feel like I’m up a bit from my goal weight, and the holidays sure didn’t help. But after trying this experiment, I think that the best way to go about it is the WW (that’s short for weight watchers if you didn’t know) method….healthy eating and exercise, but a diet that incorporates healthy foods as well as my favourites….I don’t do deprivation well….and these last 5 days proved it….I can’t tell you how much I day dreamed about today and what I would eat.

I think I’d feel better about myself if I could lose a few pounds, but I also know I need to work at feeling good with who I am now…if my happiness always depends on looking just a bit thinner, will I ever truly be happy? I doubt it.

I don’t have much else to say on the subject at the moment, but maybe I’ll add more tomorrow. What do all of you think? When you have gained a few post-holiday pounds, do you do something drastic to drop them, or just go back to common-sense healthy eating and exercise? Thanks for sticking through this with me…and I promise….sweet treat post to come tomorrow! Speaking of which, I’m off to find dessert!