Saturday, December 13, 2008

Christmas Gifts--Coffee Mixes

Vanilla Almond Coffee Mix
  • 1 (1 ounce) bottle of pure vanilla extract
  • 1 (1 ounce) bottle of pure almond extract
  • 1 pound ground coffee (regular or decaf)
Mix ingredients together and store in mason jars.

Christmas Gifts: Spice Rub


Makes 1 1/4 cups (enough to season 5 to 10 pounds of meat, poultry, or seafood)

  • 1/3 cup coarse salt
  • 1/4 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 2 tablespoons dried thyme leaves
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper (optional)
In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients, using your hands to break up the sugar.
Store in an airtight container, away from heat and light, up to 6 months.

Taken from Martha Stewart's webpage.

Christmas Gifts: Hot Chocolate Mix

11⁄2 cups skim milk powder
11⁄2 cups white sugar
3⁄4 cup unsweetened cocoa
3⁄4 cup non-dairy creamer

To Make this Jar Gift:
Place all ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir well. For a finer mix, combine all ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix well.

Store in an air tight container mason/canning jar-quart size.

Add the following directions to a cute stick-on label or note card. Decorate with a ribbon, raffia and maybe a side bag of mini marshmallows.

Place 2 or 3 tablespoons in a mug and add boiling water.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

French Onion Pork Chop Skillet

I got this from the Kraft Food and Family Holiday 2008 magazine.

-6 boneless pork chops
-2 onions thinly sliced
-2 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
-1 pkg. of Stove Top Stuffing Mix for Chicken
-1 cup shredded low-moisture/part skim mozzarella cheese

-Heat large nonstick skillet sprayed with cooking spray on medium-high heat. Add chops and onions, cook 10 minutes or until done (160 degrees F), turning chops and stirring onions after 5 minutes. Remove chops. Cook and stir onions 5 minutes or until golden brown.
-Stir in Worcestershire sauce. Return chops to skillet; top with onion mixture.
-Mix stuffing mix and 1.5 cups hot water; spoon around edge of skillet.
-Top with cheese; cover. Cook 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Taco Salad

I had all the fixings for a taco salad and I was craving it, so here's what I did.

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked and shredded
red leaf lettuce, torn into pieces (you could also use the leaves as wraps)
sliced black olives
diced tomatoes
ff shredded cheddar cheese
ff sour cream

Put desired amount of lettuce on your plate/bowl. Top with the above ingredients. Eat and enjoy!
Note: This was kind of bland when I made it. I need to add more spice/seasoning the next time I make it. I probably should have tossed in some taco seasoning to give it that zip.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Sausage and Cheese Breakfast Cups

Breakfast is a hard meal of the day for most people. Some skip it all together, some grab something light, and some (like me) use it to get in their fair share of carbs for the day. In the past, I've grabbed cereal, bagels, pop tarts, etc. because I need something to grab and go in the morning. Most of the "breakfast food" on SBD needs preparation the morning of or beforehand. I'm so not in the mood to cook a hard core breakfast in the morning so cooking the day before is much better for me.

4 oz. turkey sausage or crumbled turkey bacon
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1/4 onion, chopped
5 large eggs
1 can (12 oz) sliced mushrooms, drained (I forgot this at the grocery store!)
1/2 cup (2 oz.) shredded reduced-fat Cheddar Cheese

*Chef's note: I hate chopping veggies because it seems to make the prep time so much longer. I bought pre-diced green bell pepper and onion and things so much easier!

Preheat the oven to 350. Coat a 6 cup nonstick muffin pan with cooking spray or line with paper baking cups (I recommend the baking cups if you're going to eat these on-the-go).

In a medium nonstick skillet over medium high heat, cook the sausage, pepper, and onion for 5 minutes, or until the sausage is no longer pink. Spoon the mixture into a bowl and cool slightly. Stir in the eggs and mushrooms. Evenly divide the mixture among the prepared muffin cups (the hardest part, in my opinion). Sprinkle with the cheese

Bake for 20 minutes, or until the egg is set.

Nutritional Info (per serving):
140 calories, 9g fat, 3g sat. fat, 12g protein, 4g carbs, 1g dietary fiber, 195mg cholesterol, 400mg sodium.

Agatston, Arthur. The South Beach Diet Cookbook. 2004 edition.

Going back to the "Beach"

This little blog has struggled and so has its writer. What started off as an attempt to cook Weight Watcher friendly meals (mostly dinners) and help me keep focused on my weight loss journey has turned into a neglected little thing. Its writer has also suffered and most likely has put back all the weight she had previously lost (maybe even a little more). However, I'm not going to dwell on the past, but instead focus on the future. I realized that while Weight Watchers helped me take off weight, I was eating way too much processed stuff and not enough "fresh" stuff. So I went back to what I know had worked for me in the past...the South Beach Diet. The first two weeks are fruit, bread, pasta, etc. It's mostly veggies and meat for phase 1. There have been a few changes since I last did this diet, so I'm thinking the first 2 weeks may not be so bad after all. I also want this blog to be an inspiration to other South Beach Dieters. Some place where they can look up ideas for recipes and hints. Let's see how this turns out!