Tuesday, March 19, 2013
Is This The Swedish Chef's Last Blog Appearance?
As you may know from the first two installments of the "Chef Boyar 'B'" series, the Swedish Chef is my culinary hero! The original Iron Chef! But after this, the third installment of my series, I am considering not bringing him back for future blogs. This may surprise some, but let's be real folks, dude is kind of a liability in the kitchen. He makes a big mess, I don't understand what he is saying, and he is a bit of a culinary diva. If you think I am wrong, and you would like to see the Chef make a return in the future, feel free to voice your opinions in the comment section. Thank you.
Now, on to the real "meat" of the blog. Get what I did there? I'm punny...
Yes, welcome to the third installment in the Chef Boyar 'B' blog series! You know what this means right? The Chef Boyar 'B' blog series joins some pretty elite company amongst the great trilogies of our time!
Who could ever forget the classic Godfather trilogy...
Then along came the fun trilogy, Back To The Future...
Who could ever forget the great trilogy...
Wait...what? Oh, for the love of Justin Bieber! Who ever gave the green light to make 3 Look Who's Talking Movies? Somebody got fired. Just sayin.
In my 'Cornucopia' blog the other day, I mentioned that I was going to give being a vegetarian a try. That starts on April 1st so until then, I will have some chicken and turkey and will share them with you in blog form.
My first thing this week is Crockpot Soy Honey Chicken.
cooking in the crockpot & after it was done
1 1/2 lb of chicken tenderloin, 1/2 cup soy sauce, 3/4 cup honey, 1TB olive oil, 1 tsp onion powder, 2 cloves garlic (minced), 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper. Put frozen chicken in crockpot and poured the other ingredients (minced together) over the top. Cooked on low over night.
I also made some brown rice and combined the two. Let me tell you, this is THE BEST chicken dish I have made so far! SOOOOO GOOOOOOD!
Roasted Red Potatoes
Cut up 2 lbs of red potatoes. Microwave in water for 20 minutes to soften potatoes. Strain. Mix with olive oil, pepper, oregano, basil, onion powder, garlic powder, hot sauce, and a pinch of parmesan cheese. Cover with foil and bake for 60 minutes on 350.
These potatoes turned out really well! They had a lot of flavor. You could always leave out the hot sauce for something more mild.
Pineapple Angel Food Cake
So simple! Mix one box of angel food cake and one 20oz can of pineapple tidbits. Bake at 350 for 25 minutes. NO FAT! REALLY GOOD! It is soft and full of flavor! A good alternative if you are really craving cake.
Pineapple Strawberry Oatmeal Smoothies
Blend pineapple, strawberries, coconut almond milk, vanilla greek yogurt, and oatmeal. Probably the second best smoothie I have made to the pineapple orange oatmeal smoothie. I will definitely make these again!
That was pretty much how I spent my Saturday night. In the kitchen, being creative! Could be worse, right? Had a great weekend, experimenting in the kitchen and embracing the possibilities! And don't forget about the fate of the Swedish Chef!
Good Day Sparkville!
Saturday, March 16, 2013
The Golden Cornucopia. You want it, but you can't have it!
Not really sure it will be considered a cornucopia, but I do have a few things to cover in this blog. Let's be honest here, I really just wanted to use the word cornucopia. I mean, you literally need a cornucopia of cornucopia's in your life! Am I right? Hopefully this first paragraph let you meet your allotment of cornucopia's for the day. If not, you better go seek some higher power cornucopia! God speed my friend.
Now that we have that out of the way, let us discuss weight loss. More specifically, mine. I know it seems a bit narcissistic, but after all, it is my blog. With my weigh-in yesterday (down 2 lbs.), I have now lost 142.9 lbs. in 315 days. Those numbers really mean a couple of things to me.
One, I can't believe that I am actually able to type on here that I have lost 142.9 lbs! I mean, I knew it was possible but I didn't! Know what I mean? I am now only 23.6 lbs. away from reaching my original goal! That also seems really hard to believe!
Two, I am only 50 days away from 1 year! Just 50!
That 50 number is the one that really has me thinking. Do you want to know what I am thinking? (You guys are always so wonderful and always want to know) I am wondering if I can hit my goal number by day 365? Could I hit my goal within 1 year of starting this crazy thing? Is that possible?
The answer is, YES! Of course I can. It is just under 1/2 pound a day. That is totally doable, right? Yea, but...
Isn't there always a "yea, but?" In this case, it isn't a bad "yea, but?" It really isn't. It would be #SuperWonderfulFantastic to make my goal within 365 days, but if I don't, I won't stress over it. I won't lose any sleep. I know that I will be really close to it by then, so what does it matter if it takes me 375 or 385 days? Doesn't mean I don't hope to make it by 365, it just means that I am being realistic about it!
I said a cornucopia, so let us cover some other things.
I am thinking about going vegetarian. Well, not so much thinking about it, but more like I am going to try it for a month starting April 1st. I am really into challenging myself these days, so I thought that going vegetarian would be an interesting challenge. I figure, try it for a month and see how I like it. See how it makes me feel. We'll see, and I'm sure I will keep you updated on how that goes.
Took this myself the other night! Nice, right?
Our Rec basketball season is over :( We lost our first playoff game on Thursday night by 2 points, season over! I really wish we could have gotten the W and gotten at least one more game in. But the basketball experience for me was fantastic! It was a lot of fun and another good challenge for myself! No way I could have even considered playing basketball with all of the running a year ago, but now I want more! Looking forward to playing again!
Bringing The Fight!
Last thing for today, Les Mills Ultimate Warrior Combat Hybrid workout. Say that 5 times fast, I dare ya! I am done with the first 14 days of the 60 day workout plan. I have to say, I am loving the program. I have been sore for the first time in many months! It is the good kind of sore that means I am working some new muscles! Plus I have lost 8.8 lbs. in the first 14 days, so you can't argue those results. Really looking forward to see what the next 46 days can do for me!
Bring It On Connery!
Ok, I lied, one more thing. Picking up my tux this week for my cousins wedding next Saturday. Looking forward to getting some good pics with my girls (they are the flower girls). Might even sneak in a James Bond type pose or three ;)
Embrace The Possibilities
Good Day Sparkville
Friday, March 08, 2013
The Original Iron Chef
It has been awhile (far to long actually) since I got a blog on here about what I was doing in the kitchen. As some of you may know, I am really putting my culinary skills to the test as of late and trying to broaden my horizons a bit. I have been trying to infuse my diet with more vegetables and more variety! Who says eating clean and healthy has to be dull?
First, I wanted to give spaghetti squash a try. I have been wanting to give it a try for a long time now. Italian food is my favorite and spaghetti has always been near the top of the list for me among favorite foods. But let's be honest here, all of those noodles are carb city and that just doesn't work in my eating plan these days. Soooo, spaghetti squash it is!
spaghetti squash in the oven
It is really simple. Cut the squash in half. Brush some EVOO on the cut side, sprinkle some salt and pepper to taste, place face down on a pan, bake for 50 minutes on 400. Simple, right?
spaghetti squash is done
Once it is cooked, just take a fork and scrape out the insides. It really couldn't be easier. The texture isn't quite like noodles, but it is a great way to get in more veggies and nip that spaghetti craving in the butt!
Next up in the kitchen, spaghetti sauce. Makes sense right? Got to have some sauce to go with the spaghetti squash. So what should I do for sauce? Go to Trader Joe's or Kroger and buy some? PLEASE!!! Come on guys, this is Chef Boyar B we are talking about here! I am making my OWN! I started by roasting some red peppers in the oven...
Roasting Red Peppers
The sauce consists of roasted red peppers, 1 tbsp EVOO, 1 small onion chopped, 2 cloves garlic minced, 1 28oz can diced tomatoes, 1/2 tsp dried oregano, dash red pepper flakes, basil, 6 oz plain greek yogurt, and 1 lb of lean ground turkey.
Homemade Spaghetti Sauce
Let me tell you, SOOO GOOD! Seriously! This sauce turned out really well and I will definitely make it again!
So what could I make after the homemade spaghetti sauce? Naturally, I went with the Honey Mustard Pretzel Chicken. I know, you feel bad that you didn't guess that but hang in there, you'll have another chance shortly!
Homemade Honey Mustard and Crushed Sourdough Pretzels
I am not playing around here people! I made that honey mustard myself! Ok, I didn't go grab a bee hive or anything like that...don't get smart! But I did mix, 1/2 cup EVOO, 1/2 cup dijon mustard, 1/3 cup honey, 1/4 cup water, 3 tbsp red wine vinegar, salt, pepper. Blend together. Pretty easy and REALLY good!
Honey Mustard Pretzel Chicken Done
I rolled the chicken in the honey mustard to give it a good coat, then rolled it in the pretzel crumbs. Cooked for about 45 minutes. This turned out really well flavor wise and the chicken stayed nice and moist. I will definitely make this again as well.
One more to share with you for the week. You know how I love my smoothies, so...this was your chance to guess! I feel like Alex Trebek asking about 16th century French Lit here guys! This week's smoothie, is better than 16th century French Lit. How about Pineapple Pear Oatmeal Smoothies...
Pineapple Pear Oatmeal Smoothies
Blend 1 can pineapple, 1 can pears, 18 oz vanilla greek yogurt, water, 1 cup coconut almond milk, and 1 1/2 cups of dry oatmeal. This smoothie turned out really good! Has a nice blend of flavors to it!
Making this food does take up a good chunk of time on my Sunday's, but it is really worth it in the end. It helps me plan my meals and helps steer me in the right direction to making good choices for my diet. Not to mention, it is kind of fun to try new things! Plus, I get a nice sense of accomplishment when I make something so healthy that turns out to be so good! Open your minds to new things and EMBRACE THE POSSIBILITIES!
Good Day Sparkville
Thursday, February 28, 2013
P90x Is Done!
I can now mark off P90x from my list of things that I wanted to accomplish along this journey of mine. I can't even count how many times I started P90x over the last few years, only to quit after a couple days or a week. Not this time! This time, it was 90 days up, and 90 days down! Ok, so it was 91 days (Sore back cost me a one day delay) but are we really going to knit-pick here? I'm not!
I thought P90x was a great program to do and I would recommend it to anyone! I don't think it is quite as high intensity as Insanity or Tap Out XT, but I enjoyed it! Of course, I did the P90x Lean program which is more about flexibility and cardio as opposed to strength training like Tap Out was. Flexibility has always challenged me so working on that was really good for me! I lost nearly 30 lbs. and 13 inches in the 90 days of P90x!
Here is what the last 8 months of my life has looked like...
That is 236 workouts that I did in 242 days! Insanity, Tap Out XT, and now P90x are all in the books! It has been a long journey but it is only the beginning! I am not done! I have not reached all of my goals! I have much bigger plans that I want to get to so stopping after P90x is not an option!
So what's next? The answer is...
IT. IS. ON.
Embrace The Possibilities
Good Day Sparkville
Tuesday, February 12, 2013
The Swedish Chef - My Culinary Hero
I know that it may be a party foul to gloss yourself with a nickname, but with my recent exploits in the kitchen, I am going to roll with it! Chef Boyardee has nothing on Chef Boyar 'B'! Plus, it goes without saying that Boyar 'B' makes food that is much healthier than that delish mini ravioli in a can. As my culinary hero, The Swedish Chef would say, "Jaaa!! FlaggPunsch ees on me! Surstr÷mming und meety bolls forr eveeryvan!"
I have no idea what that actually means. But I do know, there were not meety bolls forr eveeryvan being produced in my kitchen this past weekend. After last weeks success of Egg Beaters Muffins and Oatmeal Berry Smoothies, I decided to spread my wings a bit and dive into new chicken and turkey recipes in my continued attempt to spice my menu!
First, I made my own homemade taco seasoning (not pictured). It is 1T of chili powder, 1T ground cumin, 1T garlic powder, 1T onion powder, 1/4T crushed red pepper.
It turned out well. It may not be quite as good as the store brand, but at no sodium and no preservatives, it is clean eating!
I then made homemade salsa. In a blender, I put 2 cans diced tomatoes, 1 jalape˝o, 1 small onion, 2 cloves garlic, 1/2 cup cilantro, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 teaspoon salt, juice of 1 lime.
I then made Greek Yogurt Salsa Dip. 1/4 cup Plain Greek Yogurt, 1/4 cup homemade salsa, 1 tsp of ranch mix, 1 tsp of homemade taco seasoning
Homemade Salsa & Greek Yogurt Salsa Dip
Both turned out really well with good flavor. I made those two things to go along with my next cooking adventure, Fiesta Wraps.
I am calling them fiesta wraps. Why? I don't know, it just sounds good. 1 small onion chopped, 1 tbs olive oil, 1 cup canned black beans (drained, rinsed, and mashed slightly), 1 cup cooked brown rice, 2 tsp homemade taco seasoning, 2 T homemade salsa, 1 lb ground lean turkey. Preheat oven to 300. In a heavy skillet, cook the onion in olive oil until soft. Stir in beans, rice, seasoning, salsa, and turkey. Spread out on Tomato-Basil flatbread and enjoy!
These turned out really well! They are even better when you add some of the homemade salsa on top or the greek yogurt salsa dip. I am really happy with how these turned out!
After the success of my Fiesta Wraps, I turned my attention to chicken. I have grown a bit tired of plain old chicken with rice or chicken with potatoes. I found a new recipe to try that sounded really good, Skinny Greek Yogurt Chicken.
24 oz of chicken tenderloin, 1 cup plain greek yogurt, 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese, 1 tsp garlic powder, 1 1/2 tsp seasoned salt, 1/2 tsp pepper. Preheat oven 375, combine yogurt, parm cheese, garlic powder, seasoned salt, and pepper in a bowl. Coat each chicken breast in yogurt mix and place in baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes and enjoy!
The chicken turned out great! It is tender and full of flavor!
Skinny Greek Yogurt Chicken
That pretty much wrapped up my new cooking for the weekend. I also made some more smoothies and egg muffins. I figured I would also share what I have everyday when I wake up before I eat my egg muffins. I start with 1 capsule flaxseed oil, 1 capsule fish oil, and 1 Mega Men Multi-vitamin. I have two different kinds and rotate them by days.
I also have a cup of green tea with a pinch of honey and a cinnamon stick.
Honey, Green Tea, & Cinnamon Sticks
Well, that was the weekend in the kitchen of Chef Boyar 'B'! I spent a lot of time on cooking on Sunday so I would have some good options that are healthy and quick for the week ahead. It wasn't easy, but it is worth it! Embrace the possibilities!
Good Day Sparkville
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