2/29/12

Blueberry Pie Pancakes

The women in my family have a strong love for pancakes.  In fact, my niece asked for them for Christmas.  And she got them.  Or one, rather.  It was sitting in the skillet of her new play kitchen on Christmas and appeared to be the most favorite gift. Ever.    

My husband also loves pancakes.  He has discovered how easy they are to make and is not afraid to whip up a batch when the mood strikes him.  

Both of these facts lead me to believe that our child might be some sort of half human, half pancake hybrid.  

Wouldn't that be something?  

You know what else is something?  Blueberry Pie Pancakes.  They also appear to be healthy.  Or at least not unhealthy.  

Bring on the syrup!!


Blueberry Pie Pancakes

2/3 cup of whole wheat flour
4 tbl rolled oats
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/3 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
2 packets of Truvia
2/3 minus 2 tbl of 2% millk
2 tbl canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup of blueberries

Combine the dry ingredients, add the wet to that.  Stir in the blueberries.  The mixture will be really really thick.  

Spray a skillet with cooking spray. Cook pancakes over medium low heat using 1/4 cup of batter for each one.  

Serving size 3 pancakes (makes 6)
Points plus 10

2/28/12

Gooooooooooo Lindsey!

I'm asking everyone to take just a few minutes to send your prayers and positive energy to L to the D to the O to the G today (also known as Lindsey).  She's taking the Tennessee bar exam today and tomorrow; I would imaging that's kind of intense. 


It's my opinion, based on her stellar spelling and grammar skills, that they should just give her the license.  But what do I know. 


Nothing about law, I'll tell you that.  


Spicy Chicken Pizza

So Greenwood has this awesome baker named Donald.  Not only does bake things that will make you cry, he's also very nice.  Is he, possibly, the perfect person?  Maybe so.  Maybe so.  

So I hear that he makes pizza crusts.  That's the rumor on the street.  I want to learn more about this.  When I learn more about it, I'll pass said information on to you fine people.  Until then, I'll keep using store bought pizza crusts.  


Spicy Chicken Pizza
adapted from My Baking Addiction

1 tsp canola oil
1/2 cup of onion, chopped
3 cups of bell peppers, chopped (I used green and red)
1/2 cup of salsa
1 1/2 cup of shredded reduced fat pepper jack cheese, or some sort of mixed 
1 1/2 cup of shredded chicken
1 pizza crust (I used Mama Mary's)

In a small skillet, heat the oil.  Add the onion and bell peppers and cook until they are soft.  Add the salsa.  Remove from heat.  

Place the pepper mixture a top the pizza crust.  Top with cheese and then chicken.  Bake the pizza according to the package instructions.  

Cut the pizza into four equal slices.  

Serving size: 1/4 of pizza
Points plus 11 

**I would top this with cilantro if I were you.  I didn't and regret it.  

2/27/12

Salsa Chicken

Here's another something from that "to try" list that I talked about last week. Or maybe it was the week before.  Does it matter?  Not really. 


What matters is that this is tasty and quick and easy and perfect for one person. It's a great way to use left over chicken and the green onions that I'm sure you're growing in a mason jar on your kitchen window sill. (Thanks for that correction, Lauren!  Sill not seal.  Sill not seal.)



Salsa Chicken
adapted from WW Magazine 

1/2 cup of salsa verde
3/4 cup of cooked, shredded chicken
1/2 cup of black beans, rinsed and drained
1 tbl shredded cheese, 2% reduced fat
green onions

Bring the salsa verde to a boil in a skillet.  Add the chicken and the black beans, cook for about five minutes. 

Transfer to a bowl, top with cheese and green onions. 

Makes one serving
Points plus 8

2/23/12

Slow Cooker Parmesan Honey Pork Roast

This meal looks very similar to one I posted a few weeks ago.  Same plates, same sides, same eerie yellow light. In fact, it's almost the same.  But it's not.  Swear.  Cross my heart.  

The star in this show was much fancier than a made from the back of a box pot roast.  It involved lots of ingredients that don't sound like they would go together, but in actuality completely go together.  

Take my word on this.  


I wish your computer was scratch and sniff....the aroma is mind bending.  Mind bending.  
  


Slow Cooker Honey and Parmesan Pork
adapted from Six Sisters Stuff 

3 lb of boneless pork roast
2/3 cup of Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup of honey
3 tbl soy sauce 
2 tbl basil
2 tbl garlic
2 tbl olive oil 

Place the pork roast in a crock pot.  Combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl.  Pour over the roast.  Cook on low for 7 hours.  

Serving size 4 ounces (makes about 12 servings)
Points plus 7

I had grand plans to remove this from the crock pot, slice it up, make a sauce, and really wow folks.  Howevers.  As soon as I lifted the roast to slice it, it fell apart.  Which I don't really think is a bad thing.  I've decided that we are going to be a shred it don't slice it family.  And in hind sight, I probably could have still made the sauce.  But it was Sunday and Harry Potter was on and I just couldn't be bothered.   

2/22/12

The Eight Mile Breakfast Burrito

I ran 8 miles on Sunday.


I'm surprised I made it.  I think I cried a little on mile six, thought about flagging a car down and hitching a ride back to mi casa.


But I didn't.  I kept going.  


It was also at mile six that I started to think about what I was going to eat for breakfast when I got back to mi casa.  Food pushed me through those last two miles.


When I got back to the house, I threw myself across the bed where my sleeping husband lay; I announced loudly that I had made it and that I really really REALLY needed some food.  I thought for sure he would leap up and do something about this.  But there was no leaping, only a congratulatory grunt and a roll over.  Unfortunately, my running victory did not turn him into a morning person.


I figured I was on my own and went on the hunt for some breakfast food.


What I made, I've made before.  And I've shared it here before.  But I'm going to share it again.  Why?  Because there's ham involved now. Why? Because I'm trying to up the protein.  Why?  I don't know, it just felt right.  


The Eight Mile Breakfast Burrito

1 whole wheat tortilla
1 egg
1/3 cup of black beans
1 tbl shredded 2% jack cheese
1 slice of deli ham
salt and pepper
cooking spray

Scramble the egg, black beans, cheese, ham, salt, and pepper in a skillet sprayed with cooking spray.  Once it is cooked, remove it from the pan and wrap up in the tortilla. 

Makes 1 serving
Points plus 6

2/21/12

Hey, You!

Find it here


That is all.  

Marshmallow and Chocolate Banana

Sometimes, you spend countless hours laid up on your couch watching the Harry Potter movies.

And sometimes, your speech impediment rages when you try to say "dust buster" and it comes out "a-dub-a-dub-a-dub." 

And sometimes, a banana just isn't enough.  Sometimes, you have to stuff your banana with chocolate and marshmallows.  And sometimes still, you have to wrap it in foil and bake it.

All of these things may or may not have happened over the last few days...
   


Marshmallow and Chocolate Banana
adapted from Quick Bites

1 large bananna
1 tbl of mini chocolate chips
10 mini marshmallows

Preheat the oven to 400.  Cut a slit in the banana but be sure not to cut it all the way through.  Place the chocolate and the marshmallows in the banana.  Wrap it tightly with foil.  Place directly on the baking rack and bake for around 8 minutes.  Check it to make sure that it's all melty and soft.  

Makes 1 serving
3 points plus 

2/20/12

Creamy Chicken Chili

I'm not sure about your parts, but in Greenwood on Saturday it was pretty nasty.  Rainy, chilly, kind of blah. 

Sounds like the perfect day to pull out the crock pot.  And fill it with cream cheese.  

What?  

Yes.  Cream cheese in the crock pot.  That happened.


And portraits of creamy chicken chili on the den floor?  Yeah, that happened too.  


Thanks be to Anna who suggested this recipe to Win, who suggested this recipe to me.  It's legit.   




Creamy Chicken Chili

2 boneless skinless chicken breast
1 can of corn (undraiend)
1 can of rotel (undrained)
1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed 
1 package of dry ranch dressing mix 
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp cumin
8 oz light cream cheese


Place all ingredients in the crock pot.  Cook on high for 6 hours or low for 8 hours.  About thirty minutes before serving, shred the chicken breast with two forks.  


Serving size 1/2 cup (makes about 8)
Points plus 7

2/17/12

A Few on Friday

What up?  Happy Friday.  Hope you are having a nice afternoon so far.  I feel like I've been catapulted through the morning and into early afternoon.  But I'm not complaining, just delivering facts.  

Here are a few more facts...

I've recently added Psychology Today to my google reader.  It's quite the treat, as it's full of tons of tidbits related to mental health, dynamics, crazy-town, etc. On Thursday, this was one of the featured articles. I almost didn't read it;  the "6 Steps to Happiness" title seemed a little hokey to me.  Boy, oh boy I'm glad I did!  It turned out the article was all about mindfulness.  Mindfulness, now, is my favorite. Along with peace and hope.

So just in case you don't hit that link up there and check the article out, here are the six steps in quick and dirty form...

1.  Unselconsciousness
2.  Savoring
3.  Breathe
4.  Flow
5.  Acceptance
6.  Engagement  

Pretty legit stuff.  So far in my mindfulness practice, I've noticed a small ditch on my way to work and some blackbirds.  Neither of these may sound life altering to you but I think it's a nice start.  

Another mindfulness related tidbit:  I'm practicing mindfulness as we speak as I accept my feelings of disappointment related to my burned lean cuisine and redirecting my energies to something else.   Like.....

This pretty picture!

find it here 

I'm looking forward to a pretty planter on our doorstep come spring...there are so many good ideas out there! Can't wait to get a pop 'o color up in front of our white house.  Not the white house, mind you, but our white house. But I'm sure that you were confused by that so I wanted to clear that up.  

Another fact: 

It's going to rain around here so much tomorrow that you might need a boat. This is going to make our yard look even skankier than it does now.  What is it with winter rain and a skanky yard?  Is that just us?  I wonder how that pretty planter is going to look in a skanky yard. And I wonder if my mom is horrified with how many times I used the word "skanky" in one paragraph.  She's not studying me, she's moving.  

A final fact:  I like this new Jack White song. 


Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  Keep it real and awesome.  

2/16/12

My To Try List

True story:  if I cut recipes out of magazines, I lose them.  I used to be the queen (in my mind) of the recipe binder, now i'm the queen (in my mind) of the recipe pin board on pinterest.  

This is usually not an issue; most recipes i read in magazines can be found on-line.  But sometimes, just sometimes, it's an issue.  

In the sake of being productive, let's turn issues into non-issues by taking pictures of recipes and putting them on this blog so that I don't lose them.  Yes, let's....

Mexican Chicken Soup, a recipe from Anna F. by way of Win D.  Hey girl, hey!


Salsa chicken via the March/April issue of WW Magazine. This one looks super easy and super tasty.  Brandon will hate it, i'll do it on a night that he works.  



Ultimate grilled cheese via March/April issue of the WW mag.  Who's got the manchego??!!



Salad suggestions from the March/April issue of the WW mag.  The fact that I need a recipe for a salad is just another friendly reminder of my OCD / Right Brain tendencies. 



Deviled Eggs by way of the March/April issue of the WW mag.  Brandon will just be beside himself...



A pasta and a chicken recipe from the March/April issue of the WW mag.  Both look promising. 


So there you go, my to try list.  I'll be sure to let you know how it turns out...  

2/15/12

Wednesday Afternoon Jam


A Coffee Bar

I still think it's strange to help host a baby shower.  I guess it's because sometimes, I think I'm 23 and not 29.8.  And counting.  Hey 30...I got my eye on you.   

But I can say this....my motley crew of friends and I have come a long way since hosting our first baby shower for my friend Emily.  At hers, the hostesses got into the Firefly Vodka about an hour before the shower kicked off.  By the time the shower started, we kept forgetting to refill the food trays and spent most of our time in the kitchen, gossiping.  Emily had to come get us more than once, glaring and wondering why on earth her friends were such rats. 

Fast forward a few years (probably a lifetime in emotional years) and here we are at the most recent baby shower.  We came together to celebrate my good friend and ex-roomie Kathryn and her soon to be born baby boy, Hobson.  

It was a lovely day for a brunch.  Cold as the devil, but lovely.  There were do-nut holes from Shipley's, crispy bacon, sausage balls, petit fours, and all other sorts of yummy bites.  There was also a coffee bar, which was where I threw most of my energy.  

A coffee bar was suggested after Kathryn was beyond fired up about the one at mine and Brandon's hometown wedding brunch.  I emailed the person in charge of mine and got to planning.  



For anyone throwing a party / shower / post-night-out gossip session, a coffe bar is a pretty cool thing to do.  There are tons of different ways to do it and it's a great way to use those odd size serving pieces that you never get to use.  



It's like Starbucks.  In your den.  Minus all the stress that goes along with trying to figure out the correct language to use when ordering.  

Venti?  What? Can I just have a medium? 


Here's how it all went down:


Coffee 
Half and Half
Caramel flavoring
French Vanilla coffee mate
Truvia Packets
Sugar in the Raw
Cinnamon
Nutmeg
Whipped cream (Homemade, by Win's mom.  Thanks, Ellen.  We're not sure what we would do without you. Seriously.)
Chocolate Morsels
White Chocolate Morsels
Coffee Stirrers
Small dessert spoons
Various coffee cups
Stuff to make tags so that people know what's up  



A few things were borrowed.  For example, I don't own shot glass looking coffee cups, teacups, or a coffee urn.  But it's all about making it work and using your resources, right? And luckily, people in my life own these things.  People in your life probably own them, too. 

So there you go!  Go ye forth and create your coffee bar!  And tell me how it went... 

2/14/12

Super Bowl Eats

I think next to Thanksgiving, the super bowl is my favorite food holiday.  I do.  Really.  I just decided.  I mean why not?  You're really only expected to eat apps. And what is better than that?  Nothing


I felt that this year's super bowl was the perfect chance to pull out the Annie Glass serving pieces.  The way I look at it, I don't have a ton of any fancy events on the books at this point so I might as well pull it out for the super bowl.  Seriously guys, life is short.  So here's what we ate....




Gina's Skinny Taste Buffalo Chicken Dip. This one is WW friendly.  If you eat the correct portion size.  
  

The Colonel's Fried Chicken.  This is WW friendly if you have, like, a half a strip. 



A darn good sausage and cheese plate. This is WW friendly if you only eat the mustard. 


Saucy Shrimp.  This would be WW friendly if you omitted the mayonnaise. 


Saucy Shrimp
from Karen Calloway


3 lb of cooked, peeled, deveined shrimp
1 cup mayo
1/4 cup of durkees
4 tbl ketchup
4 tbl dijon mustard
1 tbl Worcestershire
juice of two lemons
1 3.5 jar of capers, drained
2 ribs of celery, chopped
1 green onion, chopped 


Combine all ingredients in a big zip lock bag.  Allow to marinate in the fridge over night.  


It's worth mentioning that I may or may not have sat over that shrimp and eaten it straight out of the zip lock bag with a fork.  It's also worth mentioning that if you are trying to watch your weight, the last thing you should do is eat things out of bags with forks.  

2/13/12

Chorizo Noodle Bowl

Once upon a time, we told baby sister Chickey that we would give her one whole penny if she ate a jalapeno pepper at Garfields.  Seeing as how she was quite young and had little concept of money, she jumped right on this.  I'm fuzzy on the exact details but I'm pretty sure that it ended in tears.

I tell you this only because confession is good for the soul.  


And spice is good for the soul.  Especially when it's 19 degrees outside.  


Chorizo Noodle Bowl
adapted from BHG

10 oz chorizo
1 tsp garlic
42 oz chicken broth
2 cups of salsa
2 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, chopped
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp cumin
10 oz whole wheat spaghetti
1 zucchini, chopped
2/3 cup part skim mozzarella

In a large pot, cook the chorizo and the garlic until chorizo is done.  Add the chicken broth, salsa, peppers, oregano, and cumin. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and cover.  Simmer for about 15 minutes.  


Uncover, increase the heat, add the pasta and the zucchini. Cook for about 10 minutes or until the pasta was done.  Remove from heat, stir in the cheese. 


Serving size 1 cup
Points plus 9

2/10/12

A Few on Friday

Hey there!  Hope you're having a great day!  If all goes according to plan, by the time this is posted I'll be learning all about how to work with manipulative clients.  I'm pretty jazzed and excited to learn some new skills.  


What would really make me jazzed is if someone would send me to this Grief Recovery Method training. It's only $2000.  


So while I'm working on learning how to deal with manipulative folks, you figure out how to get me a scholarship to that program.


Awesome, thanks.  


Happy weekend to you!  




     

2/9/12

Lipton Pot Roast

There's beauty in the simple. 

Like this meal, for example.  Pot roast made from the recipe on the back of the Lipton Onion Soup Mix.  Don't play.  

That little blue box is something else.  Have you ever mixed up an envelop with a carton of sour cream.  Sweet Lord, it's good.  Dig through your cabinet, whip some up, get a bag of ruffles, invite me over, and see for yourself.    


Lipton Pot Roast

3 lb lean roast
1 envelop of onion soup mix
3/4 cup of water
1 large potato, chopped up
1 onion, sliced

In a large skillet, brown the roast for a few seconds on each side.  Place the onion and potatoes in the bottom of your crock pot.  Place the roast on top of the onions and the peppers. Combine the soup mix with the water and pour it into the crock pot.  

Cock on low for 8-10 hours, high for 4-6 hours.  

Shred the meat with two forks.  

Serving size 1 cup (makes about 9)
Points plus 8

2/8/12

Just Sayin'....

As I therapist (and a person), I use a lot of metaphors and stories and quotes and sayings. 


You can lead a horse to water but you can't make it drink. 


There's no logic in crazy.


How do you eat a whale?  One bite at a time. 


Is any one acting out of character?  


The problem's not the problem, it's your thoughts about the problem.


It seems that older adults also enjoy the use of a good saying.  This is just one more way that I know that I am kindred spirits with this population.  


A perk of my job is that I'm always getting to learn new sayings that I then try to work into my every day life.  I've got a few new ones that I'll be playing around with in the coming weeks:


You can bump a stump and go 'head on about your business. 


Let it roll off like peas on a knife.  


Those vegetables are going to heaven because they cooked the hell out of them.  


I'm not sure how I'm going to work that last one in but I'm looking forward to the challenge.  


So what about you?  Any favorite sayings that you (or your grandmother) have?  Share them!  I'd love to work them into my rotation....


See you later, alligator.  





2/7/12

Black Pepper Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry

Look at that sassy bottle of black pepper stir fry sauce.  Brandon and I got it, along with another flavor and a cookbook, for a wedding gift.  Hey there, awesome!  What a cool gift!  Good job, Callie!  
  


This bottle of sauce made for a tasty and quick supper.  And a smokey house.  But that's less the sauce's fault and more my fault for not quite understanding my new pans.  I've been slumming it for so long with cooking utensils that I'm just not sure what to do with myself now that I've got some nice ones.  


OK so it's important to note that this recipe uses the aforementioned stir fry sauce.  If you don't have that on hand, you might not be able to make it.  So here's a quick recipe for a black pepper stir fry sauce.....  




  • 1/4 cup oyster sauce
  • teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon white pepper
  • teaspoon rice wine or teaspoon sake

  • There you go!  It's from this website if you're interested on reading more about it.  



  • Black Pepper Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry
    adapted from William Sanoma 


    1 1/2 tbl of vegetable oil 
    1 lb of chicken breast tenderloins, cut up into bite size pieces
    1/2 onion, sliced
    1/2 bell pepper, sliced
    1/2 cup of black pepper stir fry sauce, William Sanoma brand 


    Heat 1 tbl of oil in a large skillet or wok.  Add the chicken, saute until done.


    Heat the remained oil in the skillet, add onions and peppers.  Cook for about 2 minutes or until soft. 


    Return the chicken to the skillet, add the stir fry sauce and mix until well combined.  Serve immediately. 


    Serving size 1/4 of the recipe
    Points plus 6  

    Pin It

    2/6/12

    Packing Up Plantation

    I went home to Greenville Saturday to help my mom pack up her house.  After living there for almost 20 years, she's gathering her belongings and moving on.  I'm grateful that I was able to spend the day digging through things and reliving old memories. Some of them were sweet, some of them made me bow my head and thank God for all the times I didn't get what I asked for.  For real.  

    Let's take a walk down memory lane, shall we?

    Thousands and thousands of meals were cooked in these pots and pans. 


    Pretty, old things that I never remember noticing but yet are so familiar to me. 



    Chickey and Mom's picture for the church directory.  Loves it. 


    The high school and college memories were something else.  Here are some signs that Leah made; I'm guessing during our Freshman year at MSU.  There were also 458 hallmark cards from Lindsey, a few posters from when I was involved in an anti-war protest, and a drumstick.  I've been through a lot, like a whole lot, of different stages.  This was a fun, yet slightly embarrassing ride through all of them. 


    My sweat shirt from my short lived career as a soccer star.  We were the "Soccer Rockers" and our coach made us these awesome accessories for our uniforms.  Our team actually won the state championships this year; a large majority of the girls would go on to play soccer in high school and college.  I use "our team" loosely as my main role was goal keeper / dancer.  I didn't see a lot of action but I sure did enjoy myself.  Team sports were never my thing...


    Every once and a while mom would wonder back with some treasure like these poinsettia spoons and say "Does anyone want these?" It's amazing the stuff you accumulate...



    Many of the things that I found reminded me that I've always had an inappropriate emotional response to most situations. Case in point...check out my responses to receiving a pink sweat suit for Christmas.  But in my defense, this was the year that we also got the set of wigs, and maybe even the dog, so it was kind of an emotional roller coaster for everyone. 



    It wasn't all old memories. I worked with Alex on improving her photography skills.  She LOVES to grab the big camera, which makes everyone pretty nervous.  But she cooperates when you put the strap around her neck and help her shoot.  The look on her face when you show her the picture is pretty cool. She might think it's magic.  OR she might completely understand the functioning of a DSLR camera; she's possibly smarter than me.  



    Here's the little darling, being darling. 


    While packing up your Greenville home, you must have Greenville food.  Gino's for everyone!


    Well, everyone except for Mom and MK.  Mom is such a dainty eater and MK is not quite ready for cheese burgers. 



    But she is ready for crawling....


    And Alex is NOT ready to throw caution to the wind and color in a different spot of the paper or just let the paper land how it may.  



    Pictures are my favorite.  I spent a lot of the day sorting through them...throwing away ones that didn't matter and storing ones that did.  I love finding pictures like this one of my parents on the honeymoon.  I'm not sure, but I'm pretty sure they are slamming hurricanes at Pat O's. 



    Alex sat with me while I went through a lot of them.  She got pretty good at identifying who was who; she did get confused on some of them because she is an exact replica of my sister / her mom when she was little. She kept saying that they were her.  And she kept saying that pictures of our old dog, Foxey, were of her dog, Carter.  There was absolutely no changing her mind on that one. 



    Showing mom the goods...


    We took silly pictures when we got bored....



    Played with the silver...


    Read old books that we found. No, I'm not drunk.  I just look it.  


    Mom found this box of treasure hidden deep in a closet...Dad's old record collection.  I wanted to steal it and keep it for my self but instead decided to be the nice daughter that I am and take it to him. He was pretty jazzed...





    I get a little pang when I think about leaving that house.  If I were to compare it to a country music song, I'd have to go with Miranda Lambert's "The House that Built Me."  Obviously. 


    It was a good house, kept us warm and safe and happy while being the stage for many awesome memories.  Places have power; so do certain things.  It's made me look at my own space differently.  For example...that huge fat head size picture of me and Brandon from our wedding day?  Our kids (assuming we'll have them) will totally fight over that one day, if for no other reason that to make fun of us and what we wore.  


    I'm grateful for the memories that I have and for the memories that I'm making.  Here's to the next chapter!