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Thursday, September 18, 2014

Spaghetti Squash Satay

Spaghetti Squash Satay

Tried a new sauce for lunch today:  Trader Joe's Satay Peanut Sauce - yum!  A little goes a long way, which is good because a serving size is only 1 Tbsp, containing: 25 calories, 1g protein, 1g carbs, 95mg sodium, and 2g fat from the coconut.

Trader Joe's Satay Peanut Sauce

BUT its loaded with flavor and am glad I tried it.  I have been making my own Satay sauces through the years, but it's so convenient to have a jar ready to go for those moments when you don't have the extra energy or time, which is me on most days!

I threw together this lunch swiftly and it totally satisfied :)  Am throwing it into the rotation for sure; here is the recipe:

Spaghetti Squash Satay Recipe:

1 cup cooked Spaghetti Squash - a whopping 31 calories!!  (recipe below)
1 cup precooked Veggies (I used my My New Fav Veggie Mix)
1/2 cup Beans (I used a mixture of Chick Peas & Kidney Beans)
1 Tbsp Satay Peanut Sauce, drizzled on top

Simply layer each ingredient on a plate in the order listed.  I enjoyed mine cold, but you could microwave it to heat it up.  Enjoy!

How to Cook Spaghetti Squash quickly & easily: 
Rinse Spaghetti Squash and pat dry.  Place on large plate and poke several holes on both sides with a sharp knife.  Microwave at full power for 6 minutes.  Turn over and microwave another 6 minutes.  If it does not feel soft to touch you made need to add a few more minutes.  Let sit for 10 minutes.  Cut lengthwise down the middle and using a fork you pull down creating the spaghetti like strands.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Mushroom Onion Pepperoni Omelet

Mushroom Onion Pepperoni Omelet with Provolone

This is last night's High Protein (28 grams!) - Low Carb Dinner.  The picture isn't great and it kind of looks messy, BUT it was delicious, so I figured it was worth sharing.

Here is the deal with Turkey Pepperoni:  it IS delicious and has WAY less fat and calories than "regular" Pepperoni.  If you have never tried it, you should.  Seriously, a little goes a long way and can be used like this in an Omelet, but also you can enjoy it plain as a snack, as an appetizer with cheese, in sandwiches, in salads, and oh yeah, on pizza.  Anything that could use a little extra kick of flavor can benefit from just a few pieces.  So last night I used 1/2 of a serving - 8 slices of Pepperoni - and sliced each piece in half and in half again.  Result:  there was plenty of amazing flavor in every single bite!

So my Pepperoni added only 35 Calories to my dinner - so worth it!  It also added 4.5 grams of Protein.  The down side here is the sodium of course, which is why I only did a half serving, and with that in mind I cooked all the Veggies and Eggs using no salt at all, knowing I'd get more than enough from the Pepperoni.

Check it out:

I also added a slice of Provolone Cheese - after all I don't want to feel deprived!  That added 70 calories and another five grams of Protein.  Honestly I think I could go without that next time, all the ingredients were so delicious that the Cheese wasn't really necessary.

So I think this is going to become a new 'go-to' recipe for me - super fast, super delicious, super filling, and loaded with good Protein, Calcium, and Nutrients from the Onions & Mushrooms, both of which are good for the immune system and are considered G-Bombs!  And it happens to go great with a glass of Merlot :)  This kind of meal makes dropping a couple pounds dare I say, a little bit easier...

Here is the Recipe:

Mushroom Onion Pepperoni Omelet with Provolone

Amy's Mushroom Onion Pepperoni Omelet Recipe:

2 tsp Canola Oil
1/2 pint of sliced Mushrooms
1/2 Onion, chopped
8 slices Turkey Pepperoni, cut into quarters
3 Eggs, beaten*
1 slice Provolone Cheese (optional)

In a hot pan add Oil, Mushrooms & Onions.  Saute until softened and beginning to brown.  Add Pepperoni, mix with Veggies and top with Eggs.  I always scramble everything all up together (hence its messy appearance), but by all means you could make this traditional Omelet style by using a separate pan to cook the Eggs and then add the Veggies & Pepperoni and Cheese inside.  In my case I plated the scramble and topped with the Provolone Cheese to melt.  Done and YUM.

*I typically will only eat 2 Eggs for any given meal, but I was hungry and worried I wouldn't feel full enough after eating.  Fear of hunger looms over all my meal planning :)  But it worked - I was perfectly happy with the amount of food, with just enough room left to enjoy my Apple for dessert!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Mixed Veggie Chick Pea Indian Curry with Arugula

Mixed Veggie Chick Pea Indian Curry with Arugula

Here is today's lunch using My New Fav Veggie Mix from yesterday in a new way:  Mixed Veggie Chick Pea Indian Curry with Arugula!  Totally different flavor = a whole new dish to enjoy. 

Chick Peas are a great addition to salads, stews, dips, the possibilities are endless really, and they add Protein, Fiber and Vitamins to any meal.  Here are some reasons you should Eat More Chick Peas!

Below are the simple steps on how to throw together a healthy and yummy meal, like my lunch today pictured above, in minutes:

1.  Put 1 1/2 cups of precooked Mixed Veggies in bowl

Look at these beautiful Vegetables!!

2.  Add 2 Tbsp Trader Joe's Indian Red Simmer Curry Sauce & 1 Tbsp of Water

3. Add 1/2 cup Chick Peas (rinsed and drained if canned)

4.  Add 1 Handful of Arugula

5.  Microwave for 1 minute, stir and microwave another minute.  You see, all that Arugula wilted down nicely!  Now top with chopped Cilantro and Voila!  Enjoy :)

This is a great dish to take to work - it all fits into one bowl and can easily be heated up in the microwave, or even enjoyed chilled on warmer days!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Amy's New Favorite Veggie Mix!

So it's September now....which for me means trying to drop a couple pounds.  Unlike the rest of the world who seemingly are at their heaviest over the holidays, I peak in August, always have.  Something about summer and all the festivities and vacations and the general increase in socializing has me out in the world indulging more than usual. 

So I have been busy reviewing my old recipes trying to find some easy solutions to drop the 8 pounds I've gained this year.  Yup, eight.  Up three pounds around my birthday, and then another 5 pounds during July & August.  I accredit my previous weight loss success to staying calm, keeping my finger off the panic button is immensely helpful :) and simply focusing my energy into creating, cooking and enjoying healthy meals loaded with veggies and lean proteins, resting assured that this will do the trick!

It's working, I've lost 3 of these pounds already over the last two weeks - yes drinking loads of water and eliminating breads, crackers and pastas whenever possible and loading up on all my favorite veggies creates a great jump start to quick weight loss.  

(Side note: I have also supplemented my healthy eating with an increase in exercise too!  Lifting weights and lots and lots of squats are my favs for building muscle, increasing metabolism and using my time efficiently - spending about 15 minutes a day exercising, 3-4 times a week, in addition to all the running around I do with my two young sons everyday!)

Amy's New Fav Veggie Mix: Onion, Peppers, Zucchini & Peas!

So what you see above is a pic of my new fav veggie mix.  I make a big batch of it on Sunday and it lasts me for at least three meals, using from 1 cup to 1 1/2 cups for each meal.  Each time I add a different sauce and a different lean protein to create a unique healthy and filling meal.  Today I used the veggies with Trader Joe's Yellow Thai Curry Sauce topped with scrambled eggs = totally delicious and totally filling = win!  Here is the super simple recipe:

Amy's New Fav Veggie Mix Recipe:

2 tsp Canola Oil
1 medium Onion, chopped (I used Red Onion this time)
3 medium Zucchinis, diced
1 Red Bell Pepper, diced
1 Yellow Bell Pepper, diced
1 Orange Bell Pepper, diced
1 cup Sweet Green Peas (frozen)

Into a heated Dutch Oven add oil and onion and saute until soft.  Then add Zucchini, cooking until it begins to brown.  Add the Peppers, stirring to cook (you can add 1-2 tbsp of water at this point if you need).  When the Veggies reach their desired doneness, you can throw in the Peas and cover and turn off heat.  The Dutch Oven will hold its heat well and will do a good job of thawing the peas while stopping the other veggies from getting too mushy.  Let the dish sit for 20 minutes or so, stir and it's ready to enjoy as a side dish or used to create a new dish.

Veggies heated with a little Yellow Thai Curry Sauce

Veggies in Yellow Thai Curry Sauce, topped with Scrambled Eggs

My lunch today was made by simply heating 1.5 cups of the Veggies with 1 heaping Tbsp of Trader Joe's Yellow Thai Curry Sauce and 1 Tbsp water mixed in, and then topping it all with 2 scrambled eggs = done!

I did something similar last night for dinner:  Veggies + Red Thai Curry Sauce, topped with 1/2 Avocado, sliced; enjoyed with a glass of Red Wine and followed by a crisp Apple for dessert = Amy gets the delicious meal she desires and is comfortably satisfied and full!

There are loads of options here, just choose a sauce that you like:  Red, Green or Yellow Curry Thai, all the different Indian sauces, BBQ (regular or Carolina  Gold), Italian, Tex-Mex, Salad Dressings of all sorts, Teriyaki... this list is basically endless...  And for lean proteins you can use Eggs, Beans, Nuts, a Baked Potato, Chicken, Fish of all sorts (Shrimp, Tuna, Salmon, Cod, Tilapia....)  Again, there are so many options making this recipe an easy one to use over and over again once you fill your fridge up with the good stuff! 

PS.  I am 4 visits shy of hitting 40,000 page views, so thanks for stopping by!!