Monday, February 14, 2011
I love my honey for many reasons... one of those reasons is that he is a great cook, and he taught me how to cook for myself. I mean, I could always cook, but it was usually just heating up some mac and cheese or Shake n' Bake. Tonight I threw together a shrimp soup... I used to be so scared of making soup, but Brad taught me a practically fool-proof way to make soup. And I'm going to share it with you.
*Note - I don't really measure my ingredients when I make soup, so don't get hung up on exact amounts.
Step One: Saute some onions/shallots/scallions and carrots (or no carrots, whatever), add a little garlic when the onion is cooked a bit. I use just enough oil to have a very thin coating on the bottom of the pan - probably not even half a tablespoon. And if you want to use bacon, you can start by cooking the bacon in the pan and using the bacon fat to saute the veggies. Add a little salt and pepper and any other dry spices/herbs.
Step Two: Add shrimp/chicken/tofu, salt and pepper as needed. If you need to add a little broth or water to keep the food from sticking, now is the time. Just a little bit right now, enough to get up the delicious brown bits.
Step Three: Add broth. Broth is so much tastier than water.
Step Four (totally optional - usually I am done by this point): Add leafy greens (kale, spinach, etc) and/or pasta (I like little orzo or vermicelli). Simmer until pasta is done. Season to taste.
Voila! A really simple simple simple soup. And it really doesn't take long at all. I think the most time consuming part is cutting up the veggies and thawing the shrimp. But you can cut up the veggies and thaw the night before. Tonight I had piping hot soup not half an hour after I got home from the gym. And so ridiculously healthy. Shrimp - about 100 calories. Vermicelli - about 100 calories. Oil - *maybe* 60 calories. Everything else - negligible.
That soup was so light that I treated myself to some chocolate ricotta "mousse" for dessert, which was also ridiculously easy.
1) Melt 1/2 oz. bittersweet chocolate
2) Add a serving of ricotta
3) Mix in vanilla and sugar/honey/maple syrup/stevia/whatever
4) Enjoy your ridiculously easy and AMAZINGLY DELICIOUS dessert.
I got a giant tub of ricotta at the store on Sunday and am planning on having this dessert ALL WEEK.
I have to confess - today at school I had two chocolate cupcakes and two chocolate-covered strawberries. There is a mom who is an amazing baker and these cupcakes were just AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH SOOOOOOO good. It was actually a small miracle that I stuck to two. But you know what's funny, since I started watching my refined sugar and white flour intake, I have been really good at not going carb-crazy. Even after eating the first cupcake, it's not like I wanted to devour another one instantly, which is what was happening in January. So there is a bit of progress! And then I did 15 minutes on the bike and a 60 minute Body Pump class, so take that, cupcakes.
*General Tso update - it's funny how giving into a craving just kills it. There is absolutely NO PART of me that has any desire to eat Chinese food. Maybe in a couple months...
Off to bed.
Friday, February 11, 2011
General Tso, that is. Yesterday after school I had this overwhelming feeling of "I must have Chinese food." Really, I did. So I stopped for some General Tso (and an eggroll), stuffed my face, and crashed on the couch for THREE HOURS. Yes, from 6:00-9:00 last night I slept on the couch. Ugh.
Went upstairs, got back to sleep around 10:30ish.
The message on my alarm for this morning read "Burn off the General." Right before my alarm went off, I was thinking that I'd just take one more day off (you know those famous last words - one more day...) but when the alarm rang and I read my message, I got myself out of bed and ready to go.
I'm not going to spin this morning, but I *am* going to get in another workout. It's FINALLY Friday and I'm uber-excited. The even better news is that since I got take out last night, I definitely won't want it today. In fact, I was salivating over the apple that I'm going to have for lunch. Ha!
So today I'm kicking that General to the curb!
Thursday, February 10, 2011
I do my darnedest to not complain about the weather - it's going to happen if I like it or not - but man, I'm tired of this! I'm ready to see a tulip or something.
- water water water!!!
- stop for some flowers for one of the girls at school... she's having a rough go at it lately
- write out Valentine's cards to send tomorrow
- stick to the eating plan
This summer I'd like to get certified to be a personal trainer. I'm really looking forward to it! This is a good long-term goal for me... every time I want to eat something, I think of an ad I saw - "Personal trainer wanted. Must be certified and in fantastic shape." I love that - "must be in fantastic shape." I would love it if someone I didn't know looked at me and went "wow, she's in fantastic shape." Those few words helped me avoid a second cookie yesterday afternoon.
Have a Spark-tacular day!
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