Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mac&Cheese Love

Long time, no post again. Though offline, I have been staying on program- well, the last couple of weeks anyway! (After my summer that wasn't very ww friendly.) I feel so much better when I'm eating properly and working out.

Speaking of working out, I've recommitted to my gym membership and didn't sign up for boot camp (which moved out of my school). My goal is to try out each of the classes offered at the fancier gym of the local gym chain and do my other workouts- on days I don't have much time, at the crappy gym across the road from school. Tonight we worked out there: perfect for a good treadmill jog with time left to make supper.

Speaking of supper, I made the cover recipe from September's Cooking Light: "Creamy, Light Mac and Cheese." (10 points plus for 1 1/3 cup.) It was very good. I didn't modify the recipe at all, other than skipping the parsley at the end. I like the idea of adding butternut squash to the sauce- sneaky way to get some veggies in for my family of non-lovers of the orangey vegetable. With the sharpness of the 3 different cheeses and the tart yogurt, they never noticed the squash. Another nice aspect of the dish was the crunch on top- toasted panko, rather than potato chips, but still good. Overall, it was well worth the investment of points for a nice bowl of a favourite comfort food.

I had my mac with a serving of plain arugula (nice and peppery- good mixed with the cheesy pasta and a bit of salsa (sides with zero points, too!)

Hope everyone is having a good, healthy week.

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Saturday, July 2, 2011

Summer of Fitness

Long time no post, I am well aware! This year got busy with online courses (2) and general, regular life busy stuff.

School got out on Thursday and after doing poorly at my weigh-in again this morning- no surprise there- I'm recommitting myself to Weight Watchers and regular exercise. I didn't sign up for boot camp this summer, but instead plan to make use of my neglected, already paid for gym membership and involve my family in exercise, too. Dd13 is doing both soccer and baseball this summer and wants to do weight training and walk/runs (though hopefully where no one sees her with her mom). ;P

I plan to share our progress thru the summer here and hopefully catch up with many of my favourite healthy blogs. I will also try to review at least one Cooking Light or WW recipe a week. That's my goal anyway.

And speaking of my goal: I'm aiming to make it before Christmas: 139 toned pounds.

Wish me luck!

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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

10 point chicken

But kinda worth it! Made this CL chicken parm recipe last night. Will post link later.

link later! much later! Sorry! Click here.

(online course done now...Janet will try to become a better blogger again!)

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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Dusting off my blog

...with a March 2011 Cooking Light recipe.

The November issue looks good! Hope that I can try a few recipes this month and share them. Anyway, pictured above, is Meyer Lemon Chicken Piccata (5 pts plus) with a side of fries from my beloved T-fal ActiFry (4 pts) and a salad (organic greens from Costco, 0 pts for them, 1pt for the homemade salad dressing.)

The chicken was very good and very easy to make. I just used the lemons that I already had in my fridge and because I shopped at Costco for this recipe, I omitted the parsley which they don't sell (at mine anyway). The capers I had in the fridge already (woo hoo!), but I cut down on the amount used since I didn't think my family would be jazzed about them. The recipe calls for pounding the chicken thin between pieces of plastic wrap, something I usually do with boneless chicken breasts anyway- though not to thin Piccata cutlet thickness.

The sauce for the chicken was really tasty and tart. I really liked it. dd10 wouldn't try it, dd13 liked it and dh, who likes his chicken dry didn't really try much. "I like my stuff dry," was his review, so 2/4 on the sauce from my family. (But can you really count someone's opinion who gives "dry" as his texture of choice?!? just saying. ;))

Well, I haven't posted for awhile, so I haven't shared that I'm down 25 pounds since starting in September. (as is my friend who joined with me.) I will add some bling to the site later to celebrate and share a picture of my Weight Watcher charm. (Yeah!) I'm taking an online course again, so my time is being spent online but not in weight loss blogging areas. *sigh* I'm going to try to catch up on my favourite blogs soon. Hope everyone is doing well.

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Thursday, January 20, 2011

A Good Week

...well, except for wiping out on the icy parking lot at my daughter's Glee class on Tuesday. That kind of cancelled out my will to exercise since Tuesday- having a sore neck, low back and (truth be told) sore backside. Ouch!

I did have a good Saturday weigh-in: down 2.6 and this week has been good food wise. I should be down further this Saturday. I've been tracking and feeling in control. Yeah for that! I have felt hungrier this week.

I tried a couple new recipes this week which were good. Chop 'Til You Drop Suey by the Looney Spoons ladies (featured on the Food Network) (6pts) was really tasty on Saturday night. I definitely would make it again. I had most of the ingredients and bought the veggies for it at a local grocers who specializes in local produce and has amazingly fresh stuff and interesting food finds. I didn't make their suggested side of Vegetable Fried Rice, due to time constraints and lack of frozen veggies, but rather served it with plain basmati rice.
I also made another slow cooker soup recipe: Parmigiano Pumpkin Soup with Frizzled Prosciutto from my favourite slow cooker recipe book, The Art of the Slow Cooker. To decrease the Weight Watcher points involved, I omitted the oil and used olive oil spray and used half of the half and half cream and topped the cup with skim milk. We don't have fat free half and half here in Canada. Next time I might try it with light cream- though Andrew Schloss recommends that you use at least 10% cream. I had unopened prosciutto left over from Christmas, but I think I'd skip that part next time or try a little bit of bacon. Didn't love the prosciutto enough to warrant the points. (not point worthy- or at least the type I had!)
Hope everyone had a good week! Stay off the ice (or keep your stick on the ice, as we say in Canada- for balance!) ;)

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Christmas cost a pound...

I'll take it and run! I was up one at my weigh-in, but with all the Xmas bonbons I consumed, with only being up 1 (after my cleansing week on program after the holiday and before wi), I'm happy with that.
Wish I'd stayed on program during the holiday, of course, but maybe next year when I tell all our relatives to store the chocolate at their houses, I'll do better. It's a dream anyway.

In other news, I did some good workouts and recipes this week. I will upload the pictures now and then see if I can link recipes tomorrow? Have a great night everyone. Yawn. (exercise is tiring.)

Update with links: my chicken was by the Looney Spoons ladies. I've been watching their show on demand (we recently got the Cooking Channel- woo hoo!) I tried their "Faux Fried Chicken." It was very good and pretty easy @ 6pts. dd13 loved it best. ("Please make this recipe again, Mom and often!")

My soup was from my favourite slow cooker recipe book: Andrew Schloss' Art of the Slow Cooker. The soup was Curried Coconut Chicken Soup and really good. I found a blog with a review and the recipe here. I also lightened up the recipe to make it more point friendly (to 6 pts). I omitted the vegetable oil and used olive oil spray to grease the pan instead. I used low-sodium organic broth, 2 lemongrass stalks instead of the called for 3 (not for calories, it was what I had), light coconut milk, light peanut butter, and low sodium soy sauce. The soup is very flavourful. My dh really liked it (and he's not a curry guy) and though my girls were hesitant to try it, dd13 liked it in the end. I definitely plan to make it again!

-- Post From My iPhone

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sick but on program!

Finally came down with the family's Christmas cold/ flu. Dd10 was sick too, so we stayed home from school together. In-between bouts of coughing I managed to track points for what I ate. Go me!

With the new PointsPlus program, I do find myself making better choices. smoothies are more attractive than ever with the free fruit and the reasonable points for low fat milk products. I had half a bagel instead of a whole one (bagels increased in the pointage) with my chicken noodle soup.

I thought I'd share a picture of my froth making machine I posted about yesterday. A lovely frothy chai latte is wonderful in-between bouts of hacking. I love my little machine that literally takes seconds to do its magic.

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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Homemade delicious chai

Well, kind of homemade in the preparation at home dept. My dh bought me a frother (sp?)(after I pointed it out and drew a map to the store!) for my bday in November. It's great for my fave Starbucks drink the Chai latte. With the Starbucks chai mix from the grocery store (2pts) and skim milk froth (1pt) it's not bad pts wise either! I want to try the London Fog one, too- another good latte. I'm addicted to the flavoured coffee creamer, but I think the skim milk froth would be a good change and a points friendly one, too!

As promised, here are a couple of recipes from the WeightWatchers New Complete Cookbook using the PointsPlus values.

When my sister sent us home with some left over ham on New Year's Day, I decided to look up a scalloped potatoes recipe to go with them. The binder has a 5 point one Scalloped Potatoes with Cheese. They were tasty and dh (not a potato guy) even asked for seconds- as did the girls. The recipe divides into 8 pieces, not huge, but enough.

I was rushing the cooking of the potatoes (almost 2 hours long for after work), so I kept the temperature at 350 for the whole cooking time. They browned up a bit in spots, but it all worked out. The two other changes I made were (1) they didn't have red potatoes at Costco, so I just bought honking big white ones from PEI there and (2) I never see fat free half and half in our stores (can you buy it in Canada anywhere?), so I used light half and half and skim milk, so pointswise, it worked out the same.

I also made the Slow Cooker Lasagna from the PointsPlus: Getting Started book. It counts for 11 points, but if I made it again, I might add another layer of the 3 lasagna noodles- separating the cheese section. I think it would firm it up a bit, too. I'd have to look up the points. It shouldn't add more than 1 point? Anyway, we all liked the lasagna, but the family told me they like my regular lasagna (a family party staple) better.

At my Christmas cocktail party, as I said before, I tried a number of starters from the Weight Watchers PointsPlus binder: Classic Guacamole (2), Baba Ghanoush (2), and Keema Samosas (2). They were all good, the Baba Ghanoush was my least favourite, but I think I used too much eggplant (mine was large), so I might try it again. I love Baba Ghanoush! The Samosas were my favourite. I accidently added a 1/2 tsp extra spice, so they were extra spicy (yee haw), but still really good. My dh is not a curry fan, though, so if I remake them another time, it will have to be a time when we have company! Perfect for starters anyway, right?

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Seasonal Eatings

Ok. having major picture upload problems. Something went wonky in my iPhone blog app or in blogger itself (an update probably?) and all my pictures disappeared. oops.

Anyway, long time, no post! Hope everyone had a great holiday! Ours was good- but busy and quickly over. I tried a number of new Cooking Light recipes- basically using the November 2010 Holiday Special for all my Christmas day recipes. It was a busy day, and I didn't get ANY food close ups. oops again. My sister brought rolls, wonderful sweet potatoes and an amazingly delicious salad (spiced pecans anyone?), adding to the following CL recipes that I did: Orange-Buttermilk Dinner Rolls, Framboise Cranberry Sauce, Apple-Poblano Whole Roast Turkey, Brussels Sprouts Gratin, and Sausage and Sourdough Bread Stuffing. I liked everything very much. The dinner rolls were the only thing that didn't really work out- though mil said she liked them- part of the problem was dh accidently turning off the oven in the middle of things. argh. ;)

From the same CL issue, I also made Vanilla Cake with Italian Meringue Frosting twice: for boxing day at the inlaws and for New Year's Day at my sisters in Toronto. It was really good, too, with its marshmallowie icing, though a little too delicate and slidey (held by dd13 in the backseat, the top fell off) to make the trip to the big city. It looked a bit trashed, but still got thumbs up from those who ate it. The vanilla cake inside was so light and tasty. I made my own lemon curd (from a roasted chicken recipe from my Cooking Light binder) for it, since I didn't see it in the store and I'm pretty confident in making it quickly (since I've made it a bunch of times unlike the rest of the holiday recipes!)

In Weight Watcher's news, I have started on the new program after falling off the wagon over the holidays. (too many bonbons and 2 Saturday meetings cancelled due to holidays) I tried a number of appetizer recipes for a cocktail party that I had before Christmas and a couple of others recently from the New Complete Cookbook using the PointsPlus stats. I will share these tomorrow, since it's late after all my picture woes. I will also add points to the recipes above!

Hope everyone had a nice Christmas and all the best of health and fitness in the new year!

-- Post From My iPhone