Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Nice idea - but overpriced

I am sure these help with portion control. But the price is ridiculous! I do love my Weight Watchers measured serving spoons, which were also outrageously overpriced.

Veggies get big lily pad, then carbs, protein and on down to fat. I would reverse carbs and protein.

Below are bowls for cereal, pasta, etc. with little ridges for portion sizes, 1/4 cup, etc. But it's something like $30 for two! That being said, they  may be available someplace else for less, and if they really work, they may be worth it....

Thursday, September 23, 2010


I wrote this post weeks ago, but I'm having an issue with roatating my photos. But since Martha Rose Shulman spent the entire week posting recipes about quinoa, I decided to just post it, crooked photos and all.

First of all, I have quinoa flour and I have used it in baked goods. I'd like to try the muffins...I have made something similar to the oatmeal-like concoction above, but she cooks her dried fruit - fancy!

I made the salad below. I will not write a long explanation or detailed recipe, but just say that it is bright enough to make you happy on the most depressing day. I realized the hard way that it is more like a fruit salad with some grains, not a grain salad with fruit - so the first time I made it I used some grapeseed oil and it was gross. The next time was just acid and it was much better.

Mix together - cooked quinoa, chopped pineapple, sweet onion, basil leaves, pomegranate seeds, lots of fresh lemon juice, some rice wine vinegar, and lime juice. It's not as tart as it sounds. Also add lemon and lime zest. Delightful! I made it with chicken and portobello mushrooms, but it is also good over arugula. 

Below are the other dinner components and final plate. Sideways....

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Soon to be released DVDs

Sorry in advance for the bad writing. I just can't seem to get this post done and it's not even that interesting!

I don't need any new DVDs right now, as I'm still deeply in love with my Jan and Lin Johnson series, I still frequently pop-in my original Jackie DVD and I have a ton of perfectly good Jillian and Bob DVDs already, but here are a few coming out soon by Bob and Jillian, but not under the Biggest Loser brand, that might be good....and I might buy anyway - certainly as it gets cold I will.

Bob has 4 new DVDs coming out - strength, cardio, yoga and "my (meaning Bob's) workout". They look hard. At $13 on Amazon they violate my greater than $10 rule but you can get all 4 for $40 including shipping on Bob's web site which is so much better of a bargain I'll probably do it even though I won't use the yoga one for sure. Bob has one workout that is an hour. I'm not sure who has time for that...but I think they're the fast-paced weights movements of old-school exercises.

At any rate, from the preview videos it seems much rougher than the Bob Biggest Loser DVDs. Rougher in the sense that they're really in hard-core workout mode and the backdrop is a kind of industrial-looking gym with a couple toned clients. He uses the word "raw" on the web site. While I do think the Biggest Loser DVDs have good workouts, especially Bob's Biggest Loser Boot Camp, I just can no longer watch the tubby people outperform me. Their bodies are not inspiring and the fact that they can do more push-ups than me is deeply annoying. But I really do like Bob as a trainer so I will get at least the strength DVD if not the whole set.

Jillian has one new DVD coming out momentarily. It is "Shred it with weights" so I'm assuming it's a lot like her 30 Day Shred DVD. It was widely reviewed on Amazon but not released yet but now all the reviews are gone. Seems suspicious. I know it involves a kettle ball but you can also use a single dumbbell.  I don't understand how there are so many reviews of DVDs that aren't released yet, but so be it. It's $10 on Amazon. I'm kind of tired of Jillian's mean attitude, but usually on her non-Biggest Loser titles she isn't nearly as obnoxious. And I do like the variety she puts in her routines.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Tried this and liked it....

I'm trying to cook more vegetarian recipes. Mainly for economic reasons but also for health reasons. I don't want to be a "french fry vegetarian" and I've heard American vegetarians called. These people eat a lot of cheese and soy sausages. I'm trying to be more Indian about it. I'd like to use chick pea flour and lentils and yogurt as protein sources. This change requires a lot of research and frankly reaching for those ingredients is not at all intuitive for me. I'm working on it.

At any rate, while this is not Indian, I have long thought I should use tofu as a thickener in the blender more often. I found this recipe and tried it (aldulterated of course) It's pretty good. Dave loved it. I didn't make the deep fried tofu croutons - that seemed inordinately messy. I just actually made the vinaigrette as a sauce/salad dressing. It's good on broccoli slaw, which is pretty hearty. I reduced the sugar to 1 tbs, and the oil to 1/2 cup. I have no idea with sambal oelek chili paste so I used what I had which was harrissa. I also used Chinese cooking wine instead of sherry vinegar, which probably didn't taste as good, but I had no sherry vinegar and I added in some fresh basil leaves I had that were getting dark spots. I also used tahini instead of sesame oil but I can't see how that made any difference. It really is filling and quite tasty...but it's a flavor with, as they say on Project Runway, a "strong point of view". One could easily get sick of it after a whole batch.

The first night I dumped it on a hot meal in a bowl. On the bottom was brown rice, followed by a mixture of onions and a few leftover green beans and the rest of the tofu sauteed in plain soy sauce and a little canola oil. On top of that went some black beans I had simmered in the morning and then the sauce over it all. The next day I used it as a salad dressing.

here are the ingredients:

    For the tofu-soy vinaigrette:
  • 1 cup silken tofu
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons sambal oelek chili paste
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • For the radishes and beans:
  • 1 pound radishes, preferably a mix of different kinds, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • Salt
  • 2 pounds fresh beans, preferably a mix of three kinds, such as green, yellow wax, and Romano, or haricot verts, snow peas and sugar snap peas, trimmed
All in all a good way to step out of my cooking comfort zone.
(next up i'm going to use tofu as a thickener in a dessert, like with cocoa powder and soy milk.)