Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Spring Break is testing my resolve...

I knew when we started this diet that Spring Break was going to be difficult; being home, around more food and less support.  It's as bad as I thought it would be (although it does help that my mom has jumped on board for the week).  The main issue is that there are endless snacking opportunities at home.  Out here on the farm, you never know when a project will start, and suddenly there's eight extra people at your house and they are all hungry men.  It happens all the time, and it means that there always needs to be extra food around for those emergency times.  Great for all those workers, but for me it's just temptation everywhere!  And without my motivators living a few steps down the hall, it is all up to me to stop myself from eating what I shouldn't.

The first thing I did when I got home was go grocery shopping with my mom.  She wanted to try out our diet for a few days, so she bought some spinach, peppers, sweet potatoes, asparagus, and some chicken breasts.  I also slipped some hot sauce in the cart, but I'm not telling her what I put it in.  My family eats things very plain, so they are too scared to try anything spicy; what they don't know won't hurt them...

She also bought some chocolate covered almonds, for when we are really craving a dessert or something sweet.  Here's a helpful hint if you're a mindless muncher like me: take out three or five or however many you need to satisfy your craving, and then close them and put them away, out of sight.  Too many times at my house we leave things sitting out on the counter and it is all too easy to walk by and grab a handful of whatever it is, simply because it's there.  If you can't see it, it is a lot easier to resist it.

Yesterday for lunch, I made the Southwest Chicken Spinach Salad that you can find on the recipes page (or can SOON find there, anyway).  That was a big hit.  We made more and put it in the fridge so it would be there when we needed to make a quick meal.  Last night, I made chicken breasts with a little bit of Mr. Yoshida's marinade, and I threw in a little garlic powder and some Sriracha hot sauce.  Some of my siblings ate it as a sandwich; I ate mine with some lemon roasted asparagus, and no one complained about anything being too spicy.  (Success!)  Since they liked my chicken marinade, they are all willing to try the next thing I make.  I think I might go with salmon or tilapia.  We will see how far they trust me...

Sandy and Pixie... I miss these two goofballs. :)

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Such a delay in posts.  We're new at this so bear with us.

For week 1, we were really excited to start the new diet and eat clean and be awesome.  Turns out, after about day 5, I was already letting my eyes wander to chocolate, peanut butter, nutella, you name it.  So after a few lousy days on my end, I'm ready to get refocused as of today.

Here are a couple of the meals we made during the first week!

Lemon & dill baked salmon, wild rice & tilapia
Servings: 1      Calories:  420

1 4 oz salmon filet
1/2 cup Uncle Ben's wild rice
Fresh asparagus
Dried dill
Garlic salt

Cook rice as directed on the box.  Preheat oven to ___ and cover baking pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Rub garlic salt into salmon filet. Sprinkle with dried dill and lemon juice.  Add pepper if desired.  Bake until center of fish is flaky (our oven took about 17-20 minutes).

Add a little olive oil to a non-stick pan and add medium heat on the stove.  Once hot, add asparagus and sprinkle with salt and lemon juice.  Allow to cook while rotating frequently for about 5 minutes until vibrant green.

Southwest chicken spinach salad
Servings: 1      Calories: 190

1 cup spinach
2 oz rotisserie chicken, shredded
1/4 cup sweet corn, cooked
1/4 red bell pepper
1/4 cup black beans, cooked & drained
Lemon juice
Chili powder
Garlic salt

Wash spinachIn bowl, add chicken, beans, corn, peppers.  Sprinkle lemon juice and garlic salt to taste.  Add 1/8 tsp chili powder.  Mix well.  Add to spinach.  

The salad is good by itself but we added 1 tbsp of Hidden Valley Southwest Chipotle dressing and some cripsy tortilla strips on top.  The calorie value incorporated those additions. 

Asian chicken & salad, sweet potato fries
Servings: 1      Calories: 345

4 oz chicken breast, bake, salted and seasoned
1 medium sweet potato
1 cup white cabbage
1 mandarin orange
Sesame seed oil
Rice vinegar & soy sauce

Cut cabbage into thin strips and peel orange into wedges.  In a pan, mix 1 tbsp sesame seed oil, 1/2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce, 1 tsp rice vinegar and warm on stove (about 3 minutes medium heat).  Pour over salad and top with the oranges and sesame seeds (optional).  Add to chicken too!

Peel and cut sweet potato into strips and line baking pan with foil.  Toss fries with olive oil and light salt and spread evenly on pan.  Bake at 400 until fries brown and firm up (about 25 minutes for us).

Turkey meatballs & wheat pasta, brussel sprouts
Servings: 1      Calories: 320

1/2 lb ground turkey
Dried rosemary
Dried oregano
Dried basil
Minced garlic
1 large egg
3/4 cup breadcrumbs

Take all the above ingredients (about 1.5 tsp of each of the dried ingredients and 1 tsp minced garlic) in a large bowl and mix well.  Measure out 1 tbsp and roll into balls and place evenly on a pan with foil that is also greased.  Bake at 400 until internal temperature hits 165 degrees (about 30 minutes for us)

Boil pasta as directed and for sauce we used Newmans marinara.  The salad is just bagged salad and brussel sprouts were steamed until tender and salted.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Getting Started

Week 1 Shopping List

1 cabbage
3 honey greek yogurts (oikos)
6 berry greek yogurts (oikos)
1 bag of pre-washed spinach
7 bananas
4 cans of black beans
4 cans of pinto beans
2 cans chili beans
2 cans garbanzo beans
2 lbs chicken breast
1 package of salmon filets (10)
1 package of tilapia filets (10)
1 seasoned rotisserie chicken (Sam's Club, $4.99!!)
2 lbs asparagus
4 lemons
2 large tomatos
4 large sweet potatoes
1 large white onion
1 large red onion
1 avocado
1 can condensed tomato soup
1 can tomato sauce
1 8 oz container blueberries
1 1/2 gallon vanilla almond milk
1 Simply Organic enchilada sauce
1 32 oz frozen broccoli
1 bag baby carrots
18 large eggs
1 bag almonds unsalted
1 package small corn tortillas (10)

Menu will be posted on the recipes page!

The goal is for the meat/protein to last us three for two entire weeks involving 14 meals.  The veggies should last us 7-8 days.  So this shopping trip was a little more expensive compared to what the future trips will be.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Our First Post!!

Welcome!  Ross, Liza and I have started this blog for numerous reasons.
  1. To ensure we keep ourselves responsible enough to maintain a healthy lifestyle for the sake of this blog.
  2. To avoid the embarrassment of not keeping up a public image we hope to establish. 
  3. A creative outlet.
  4. Procrastination!  Because this is going to be much more fun than homework.
  5. To post pictures of our adorable dog, Pixie, for the public to fawn over.

Is she cute or what??

So follow along in our quest to convert three horrible eaters to three healthy people, and fall in love with a pretty cute dog while you're at it!