Sunday, October 26, 2014

Glorious Apples

Today was the first real rain of the season. It was also the first time of the year that I turned on the heat. Rain, warmth, and a sack of golden delicious from my landlady's apple tree that she brought by a week ago. I've been eating them but not fast enough. So today I made the most glorious apple cake. It was very quick to throw together and easy to make. It's rather impressive at 3" tall with its caramelized crisp top and almost custardy moist interior. I added some sherry to the apples when mixing in the sugar. Also added some maple sugar left over from when I lived in Vermont years ago. Funny how you haul this stuff around with you and never use it until one day 6 yrs. later it sort of leaps off the shelf into an apple cake.

Well the point I want to make is that even though this is not diet material, it's a great cake and needed to happen. It's the best apple cake I've ever made. So why do I have all this guilt around making it? Because some sick voice inside my head keeps telling me that I can't enjoy things that are sugary, contains fat and are high in calories. Well too bad. I am enjoying a delicious slice and then the rest gets divided between my son and my landlady, who will both adore it. Even though some foods are not meant for a diet, they are good for your soul... and that makes it all worth eating.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Letting Go

What happens when life overwhelms you? You learn to let go. I can't even begin to pick up the pieces where I last left off so I'm letting it go... completely. I'm letting it go and starting fresh. A new beginning with a new outlook and new goals based on what I now know about myself that I didn't before.
What I now know:
  • Staying the course will get you to where you want to be.
  • Changing life long patterns is a life long commitment
  • Beets, carrots and watermelon are low in calories but high on the glycemic index.
  • Counting calories will throw me under the bus.
In A Nutshell:
A lot has happened since April 17th. I lost more weight and gained it all back and more. I have decided to start fresh with my goal to lose 100 lbs. I'm not going to beat myself up over getting off track. I've learned A LOT about how I eat and why many of the foods I've been using to lose weight with are not good choices for this. I only weigh myself once a week. Getting a support system is a good thing.
And Last But Not Least:
Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do today.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Behold... glorious carrot soup

Growing up I pretty much hated eating carrots, with the exception of carrot cake. They were so dull and uninspired. My mom served them steamed in a big bowl with butter and nothing else. She would sometimes cut them up in a salad of iceberg lettuce and French dressing and because of this, it wasn't until much later in life that I even considered eating carrots at all.

It all started with the rabbits. Before my son I had rabbits. Lots of them. All my friends had rabbits because of me and we would set play dates for our bunnies to get together and make even more rabbits. Being the doting "mom", I always had plenty of carrots around. The local stores would save the trimmings from the vegetables for me to pick up weekly. This included things like older carrots, carrot tops, outer leaves of lettuce, imperfect apples and strawberries.  Due to all the carrots around, I started eating them myself. I usually ate them raw and pickled in rice vinegar with other vegetables. I love this! That was about the time I started to make carrot soup. I'd had some at a restaurant in San Francisco that was absolutely fabulous and began to use the carrots to make the occasional carrot soup. Then I discovered different varieties of carrots at the farmers market and started buying carrots just for the soup. The Nelson variety is the one to get. They are noticeably sweeter with a finer texture than super market carrots, although super market carrots work fine also.

The smells of the carrots cooking with curry spices, bay leaves and chicken stock is so therapeutic. The bright orange color is gorgeous and the taste is divine. Even people who do not like carrots usually love this soup. Even kids love this soup. The combination of flavors change during cooking to meld into a unified taste all it's own. I've added things like cumin, turmeric, orange juice, potatoes and cayenne in the past for variations but honestly, the basic version of this recipe is still my favorite. I like it with just a few chunks and not all pureed so I remove about 1/2 cup of the vegetables to chop a little finer and re-add back into the pot after the vegetables have been pureed and before the milk and parsley are added. This soup pairs great with a side of crusty sourdough bread and butter. So healthy and flavorful. Yum!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Making Amends

Well no one ever said that losing weight was easy. We all know what it is that we need to do to lose weight but doing it so darn hard at times and have to admit that I have run astray! The thing is to get right back on track and don't beat yourself up over it...

Stay true to your goal and visualize. There are always going to be things thrown your way that make it difficult to diet but if we are really committed to our goals, we find a way to work around them. The most dangerous thing we can do is make excuses for why we can't stay the course. I've been in this mode for a couple of weeks now and I can see where it is time to get back on the program.

I've been in bread mode lately, which is not the best thing for a diet, but absolutely fascinating to me. It all started with my completely random discovery of Tartine bakery in San Francisco while looking for a place to park. I found a space conveniently located right in front of Tartine's and thought that I would eat lunch there after my meeting, (clueless as to the caliber of bread and pastries they produce). 

Tartine country bread is unsurpassed in flavor and texture. In fact the bread is so good that I have become completely obsessed with baking. It just so happened to coincide with my search for the perfect banh mi roll. I have this vision of what it should be and many come close but none are "it"...yet. Having fallen under the spell of sourdough, I've ventured into the world of wild yeast baking and am stuck with it for awhile. Don't think there's a wild yeast diet yet, but I'm working on that.

In honor of my fathers 86th birthday today, I'm adding this recipe for a tomato bread salad. He told me years ago that this was his favorite food to eat growing up. His mother was a fabulous cook and utilized a garden to feed her family. He talked about her home made ketchup and her cream pie also as being favorites. I remember thinking, how on earth could a tomato and bread salad be your favorite meal... until I tried it one day. The flavors of the warm, ripe tomatoes coupled with the homemade bread and additional ingredients is simply delicious! This does not keep well and should be eaten within the same day of making.

Tomato Bread Salad


Ripe tomatoes, (one per person), cut into chunks, stale sourdough bread cut into chunks or torn into pieces, basil, garlic, champaigne vinegar, fruity olive oil, sea salt, fresh ground black pepper, sprinkle of sugar.


Place cut tomatoes in large bowl and sprinkle with vinegar, a little sugar, salt and pepper. Add bread chunks and combine with tomatoes. Drizzle olive oil over mixture and add basil to taste. Cover bowl and set aside for at least one hour to allow flavors to develop and the bread to absorb the flavors. Adjust oil and seasonings and serve.

Thursday, March 13, 2014

The Missing Link

I've been struggling with my weight loss again. Not because I'm eating unhealthy, but because I've reached a point where it's becoming difficult to burn the fat through diet alone. I gained 4 lbs. over the past two weeks. The beauty of this blog is that it gives me a means to measure my progress and a format to hold me to my weight loss goals. I can see that there is something missing and that something is exercise.

There was a time when I used to work out at a gym 3-4 mornings a week heading off to my job. I mostly would spend 40 minutes on the elliptical machine, staying on until I burned 500 calories. It kept my weight down and I felt pretty good. There isn't a gym in my area that would be convenient for me to go to and honestly, I'm looking for other forms of getting exercise that don't require committing to a membership.

My favorite form of exercise by far is riding my bike. Up until a year ago, I rode my bike on average 40 miles per week. I've been on a number of bike rides since moving here but living in the mountains makes for some pretty strenuous hill climbs that can be really difficult. I haven't quite figured out how to fit bike riding into my schedule yet. I'm going to work on that...

All I know is that I need to get some exercise back into my life on a regular basis. I ordered a cute tank top from a company, Lola Getts, a couple of weeks ago. They manufacture a line of work out wear sized specifically for plus size women. I've been wanting to buy this cute top for a while and when I saw it go on sale, I jumped on it.

One of my co-workers gave me a body ball for my birthday years ago. Honestly I have not used it until now. I love it! It's great for stretches and is something I can utilize at home. There are a number of exercise videos on U-Tube for strength training with the body ball. They're all around 15 minutes long and so it makes for a very accessible workout. All I have to do is connect my lap top to my TV and I'm ready to roll.

Ready to get back with the program...

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Yogurt Up

There have been a number of new products surface in recent years that are fantastic. These reusable BNTO canning jar adapters from cuppow make it easy to put together your own healthy concoctions. They’re great for salads and flavored yogurts. They're fantastic for diets, so you can pack your own healthy food items on the go.

I absolutely love yogurt and eat it every day. It helps keep my digestive track in order and keeps my complexion clear and smooth. It’s loaded with protein, calcium and nutrients. The probiotics and B12 are beneficial to maintaining a healthy immune system.

Buying flavored commercial yogurt has become a circus. With a zillion varieties to choose from, there is a lot of competition and most of them are loaded with junk ingredients. There is so much added to them in the way of chemicals and artificial sweeteners that the commercial processing in many instances diminishes the benefits. I've taken to buying a good quality plain yogurt, (or making it myself), and adding my own flavors. I like adding homemade jams, chutneys, fresh fruits and granola for a much more nutritious and fresh taste.

My favorite way to make yogurt is in a crock-pot. It’s easy and economical. I use a good quality whole milk and save some from my previous batch to use for the culture. The first time you make it you can use some store bought yogurt for the starter culture. Just make sure the yogurt you use has active bacteria, (Nancy’s, Brown Cow or Mountain High are all good brands). The website Creative Simple Life has a great tutorial for this easy crock-pot method.

She mentions another interesting method in her blog using mason jars and a cooler. I have not tried this method but it looks easy. Either way you go, if you eat a lot of yogurt... homemade yogurt tastes great and is far more economical than anything you can buy.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Making Adjustments

Life would be so easy if everything went according to plan, but that is hardly the case. We are constantly having to adjust accordingly for unforeseen circumstances that are thrown our way.

As I become further immersed in my diet, I'm realizing that I need to make some adjustments that are going to help me achieve my weight loss goals. As I mentioned in a previous blog, my personal style is one more of a sprinter than a long distance runner. I'm driven by bursts of energy intermingled with moments to regroup... periods of pushing followed by time to reflect and make adjustments. It's hard for me to always be in the "push" mode. It just doesn't work out and I lose focus.

I've been experimenting with different eating patterns and what I've found to work best for me is to stick to a healthy food plan every day, but to have 1 day of the week that is more of a "push" day.

So what makes this one day different from the rest?  During the "push day", I only consume low calorie food in a liquid form. That can include smoothies, protein drinks, soup, tea... (it does not include alcohol or melted ice cream).  It does however include yogurt and sugar free Jello. For this one day, I generally will have a smoothie for breakfast, a protein shake, (or soup) for lunch and a hearty bowl of soup for dinner. In between meals I drink plenty of water intermingled with one or two glasses of freshly squeezed grapefruit juice. I'll make ahead, (can 8 quarts at a time), any one of the soup recipies listed in this blog to always have on hand for these days. I also like the Progresso brand low calorie line of soups. They are really good! The other five days are still focused on keeping my calorie intake at around 1200 per day. Having that one push day a week provides the"sprint" that I need to break up the week, boost my metabolism and make some real headway into achieving my goal.  After a day of  limiting myself to a primarily liquid food diet, my regular diet seems like a banquet! The "push" I get from this one day provides the boost and discipline I need to stay on track both mentally and physically.

A note about commercial protein shakes...

I basically don't like them. They have a highly processed taste that I find repulsive. They are a quick fix and not geared towards developing healthy eating habits for any sort of long term weight loss program.  Most people love them because they "don’t have to think" about food, plan meals or buy expensive products. They do however have their place in a liquid diet plan as a meal replacement and there are a number of good recipes for homemade protein shakes that I love:

Fat-Burning Mocha Madness
  • In a blender, mix ½ cup of cold water, (or can use 2% or almond milk), you can add more or less depending on the consistency and taste you prefer.
  • Add 2 scoops of nutrient-rich chocolate-flavored protein powder.
  • Add 1 tsp. of granulated instant coffee.
  • Gradually add 5 ice cubes to thicken.
  • Blend on high for one minute (in a pinch, this shake can also be made by simply mixing ingredients together in a glass with a spoon).

Simply put, weight loss occurs when your metabolism gets moving and you put out more calories than you take in. If you were to replace a 750-calorie bagel and orange juice meal with a 155-calorie protein shake, you’d save 595 calories per day. That's a considerable cut that adds up in the long haul.

Thursday, February 20, 2014


I have a special love for beets. They're the type of vegetable that people either love or hate. I never liked them as a child and didn't eat them at all until later on when I moved to Cincinnati. Summer time in Cincinnati can be unbearably hot and humid. I had a friend there who made fantastic borscht. She would make a hearty root vegetable based borscht in the winter and a lighter, ice cold chilled borscht version in the summer. I have many fond memories of hot summer evenings spent out on the balcony sipping ice cold borscht from a bowl while watching the lightning bugs.

Beets are amazing. I just cooked some that I had bought probably back in May of last year. They've been sitting in my refrigerator that whole time. I pulled them out last night and not too bad! A little moldy around the root and starting to sprout leaves, but all in all still quite edible.
The health benefits of beets are many . Beets are loaded with antioxidants and are an excellent source of iron, calcium, fiber and folic acid. Betacyanin is the pigment that gives beets their striking magenta color. It is absorbed into the blood and can increase the oxygen by up to 400%.
One of my favorite salads is just a wedge of iceberg lettuce with some dressing and pickled beets on top. So simple! Iceberg lettuce gets a bad rap for lack of nutrition, (which is not true). It is crisp, crunchy and the pickled beets together with the dressing give it so much flavor. See the picture below?... that whole salad is just under 100 calories. I buy cans of julienne beets, drain them and marinate them in rice vinegar with fresh mint, salt and pepper. I keep this in a jar for when I need to put together a quick salad. You just can't get any easier than that...


Sunday, February 16, 2014


Consistency is better than rare moments of greatness.

Consistency is challenging for me. I'm more of a sprinter than a long distance runner. I start out strong, maintain and then lose momentum somewhere around the last 10%. This is due to a couple of traits...

I've never actually been tested for being attention deficit but I know it's there because I tend to get bored easily.  I like to switch things up so they are different and new. I love the planning stages of getting something up and running...developing concepts, brainstorming ideas, finding the "soul" and making it happen.  For me the satisfaction comes more from the road getting there than from the finished product. Once the product has been defined and all aspects are put in place, I'm mentally on to the next thing... 
Discipline. I think a lot of discipline stems from the ability to place yourself in situations that are supportive of what you strive to accomplish. Chances are I'm not going to cut calories by going to McDonalds. I try to be aware of "potential downfall" situations and avoid them.  But the real test of discipline is being able to deal effectively with the numerous situations outside of our control... called life. Being able to maintain a focus on our goals in spite of what's taking place in our surrounding. Possessing a clarity of purpose that allows us to acknowledge and transcend our downfalls. Realizing that failure is essential for reaching success.
There's a lot to be said for going the distance and finishing what you start. Working around my short comings, I've come to learn that the best chance I have at going the distance is to break it up into a series of sprints instead of one long haul. Accomplishing goals on a smaller consistent, (the key word here), basis are just more do-able for me. If I can break the distance down into manageable "sprints" then the long haul becomes much more attainable.
I want to develop a consistent routine that supports my efforts. This means defining a pattern that keeps me focused. Eating at regular intervals, getting the sleep and physical activity I need. Focusing on the here and now and not letting distractions take president. Developing more of a daily routine that's going to support my weight loss over the long haul by being consistent.
Carry On...

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Eating Light

My absolute favorite thing to eat are fresh Vietnamese spring rolls. I never get tired of them. They are light, flavorful and the combination of fillings are endless. The best thing is that they are very low in calories, so you can eat a lot of them. Most of the calories will come from the dipping sauce so I try to use it sparingly and keep the sauce on the lighter side. I love the flavors of fresh mint and basil. I grow my own mint just so I can always have plenty on hand.

I love using fresh lettuce, mint and vegetables cut into thin lengths and marinated in rice vinegar layered together with slices of avocados, shrimp and vermicelli noodles. This is pretty much my go to filling combo. Other ingredients like grilled tofu, marinated fresh carrots, daikon radish, red peppers and mung bean sprouts also work well as fillings.

Todd Porter and Diane Cu's web site, White on Rice Couple , has a fantastic tutorial on how to assemble these spring rolls. There is definitely a learning curve to making these. They’re not hard to make but it does take some practice to properly handle the wrapping. I have all the filling ingredients laid out and ready to go so that the softened wrapper can be assembled and rolled quickly. It’s important not to overfill the wrapper. It takes practice to know how much of the filling to layer so that it will roll up neatly.
I use the Three Ladies Brand of rice wrapper because it tends to hold up better and not tear as easily as some of the other brands. For the dipping sauce, I use a light combination of hoisin sauce, (or tamari), mixed with some sweet chili sauce. Peanut dipping sauce is also good. Rice vinegar mixed with a little tamari is very light and good also.

The only drawback for these rolls is that they do not store well at all. They have to be made fresh and eaten within a 3-5 hours. It’s not the thing to make ahead and store in the refrigerator. In fact getting the wrapper cold drastically changes its composition. It becomes tough, rubbery and basically inedible. They are best eaten fresh... right after being made.


Sunday, February 2, 2014

Staying Motivated

There is something very motivational about achieving a goal, no matter how small it is. The fact that you set out to accomplish something and succeeded is such a lift any way you look at it.

Last week I set out to get back on track with my weight loss, set a goal to lose 4 lbs. by Sat. and in fact lost 5 lbs. It was a hard week for me. I had to re-adjust my mind set to be aware of keeping my calorie intake in check. I'm not one to count calories and I know intuitively when I'm going over the limit.  It's really a matter of developing the mind set to break away from old habits. Changing my thought process and staying accountable to my goal was what motivated me through the week.

I honestly feel like we all know inside ourselves what we need to change to lose weight. With me it involves portion control, eating late at night, and being conscious of what I eat. For instance when I stop for gas, frequently I will go inside the station and buy a small bag of chips, or an ice cream bar. I realize that it is not wrong to buy something to eat, just make it something that is not going to put on the extra pounds. So now I buy a bottle of water and a pack of gum, or some pistachios. I've become much more conscious of what I eat in between meals, in addition to the meals themselves.

For me... staying motivated involves meeting goals and having things to look forward to. The sense of accomplishment drives me to stick with it while having things to look forward to propels me forward. They both work hand in hand. It's a mindset that allows you to stay focused and accept new behaviors into your psyche.


Routines can help us to stay motivated. Friends and support groups can be very motivational. I think it is good to use outside support systems to develop our inner strengths. Being connected to a group can give us new insights into how we relate to food and provide a stable support system. The connections we make can help us lift each other towards achieving our goals and provide accountability. This is true for all aspects of our lives and not just for weight loss.

I ate tons of the Southwest chicken lime soup! OMG it is the easiest, best recipe and I just never get tired of it. I also ate lots of my fresh Asian rolls which have vermicelli rice noodles, mint, shrimp, avocado, pickled vegetables and lettuce. They are so fresh, light and low calorie. I'll post my recipe for these later in the week...

Next week starts the 2-1/2 lbs. per week weight loss. 236.5 by next Sunday.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Setting Goals

Up until now I have not set any goals for my weight loss. I've been more concerned with just changing my eating habits and getting into a mind set where I am more conscious of what and when I eat. This is all good except that I have not lost any weight this entire month so far and in fact have gained a few pounds. I think it's about time for me to set some attainable goals!
I realize that in addition to the mind-set, a big part of weight loss is setting goals. Goals are important because they help you focus your time and energy on the areas that count. Without them, you are just sort of floating around aimlessly with no clear direction.

I've been reading a lot about SMART goal setting. To set myself up to succeed, my goals should be:
Specific – Detail the goal. Break into smaller steps. Can be long or short term goal.
Measurable – Be accountable by selecting ways to determine if you have reached the goal you set.
Achievable – Stay motivated by keeping your goals within reach.
Realistic- Keep your goals grounded in reality.
Time Bound – Regular reviews on your progress will aid in keeping you focus.
So lets get started today and set some weight loss goals for the week...
  • I want to weigh in at 140 by next Saturday. That's a loss of 4 lbs., (that's right... I gained 4 lbs. this week!) That will put me back on track with where I was a week ago. I'll make sure that I eat something nutritious for breakfast every morning, (which I have really been lagging in. I tend to run out the door and not eat until lunch time). I'll make sure to have healthy food prepared and readily available for the week so I can easily adhere to a more regular eating program.
  • For the long term I want to lose 10 lbs. each month. That's 2.5 lbs. a week. That put's me at my desired weight of 155 in 10 months.
  • The best motivation for me is thru updating this blog. It really does hold me accountable and provides me with a format to regularly review and measure my progress.
  • At some point I need to incorporate an exercise program. I'm still pondering what this will encompass... more on that later.
  • Staying motivated. That will be a good point for my next blog...
So really the point is to stay on track with a plan and a goal in mind. Got it!

Thursday, January 16, 2014


I've been making a conscious effort to include good fat's in my diet lately. I used to think that a low fat diet was the way to go but honestly I feel so much better and satisfied if I eat foods with healthy fat contents. I feel so much fuller with more energy.

Fact: The obesity rates for Americans have doubled in the last 20 years, coinciding with the low-fat revolution. Cutting calories is the key to weight loss, and since fats are filling, they can help curb overeating.

Fact: A “fat-free” label doesn’t mean you can eat all you want without consequences to your waistline. Many fat-free foods are high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and calories.

Fact: The mix of fats that you eat, rather than the total amount in your diet, is what matters most when it comes to your cholesterol and health. The key is to eat more good fats and less bad fats.
Saturated fats and trans fats are bad for you but monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats are good for you, lowering cholesterol and reducing your risk of heart disease.

I lived briefly on a 50 acre avocado ranch in the Central Valley and had unlimited free avocados available year round. I used to make a lot of avocados stuffed with things like chicken salad or shrimp or sometimes with sliced tomatoes and strawberries that had been marinated in balsamic vinegar. Really it doesn't take much... a perfectly ripe avocado with anything is hard to beat. The chicken lime soup recipe from Budget Bytes is fantastic with sliced avocados added on top! Avocados are packed with anti-inflammatory benefits that aid in fighting arthritis. They are high in fat but the fat is good fat that has unlimited benefits.

The other fat I'm eating comes from nuts. I love almonds and pistachios! They are a quick snack to have around and particularly good to keep in the car for when you need something to curb your appetite while driving.

Other foods with healthy fats are bananas, eggs, olive oil, and grilled salmon. I love eating two poached eggs on toast for breakfast. It's really light and satisfying. Grilled salmon with asparagus, baby red potatoes and lots of lemons is also one of my favorite meals. Also, a sliced banana with yogurt, chopped peanuts and a drizzle of orange blossom honey is like eating dessert for me.

So really my focus has been to incorporate more healthy fats into my daily diet and not stress about the increase of calories they may add.

Thursday, January 9, 2014


I live on 88 acres in the Santa Cruz mountains and our water comes from a well. This is only my second experience with well water. Years ago my boyfriend and I lived on his fathers farm in Ohio with well water. The water had a lot of sulphur and iron in it. It smelled and tasted horrible! I remember my hair was always limp and it was difficult to get soap to lather. This was back in the 70's before people really bought water and so we just lived with it.

I have to say that most of the places I've lived have had poor public water that I would never consider drinking. By all accounts, the San Lorenzo Valley public water is excellent! It's by far better than any water you could buy. I used to live in Carpinteria and drove between Santa Barbara and Boulder Creek every weekend for 4 yrs. I used to haul back SLV public drinking water every week because the water in the whole central coast area was so bad. The public drinking water we had in Vermont was pretty gross as well. You would think that a place like Vermont would have clean drinking water. I remember coming home from work one day, turning on the faucet and being horrified by the bright orange flow coming out. Turned out that the city had done some work on the water main that day. It took a full half hour of leaving the faucet running to clear it out! I never drank their public water again after that.

The well water where I currently live is good. There is no odor and it tastes great. Soap lathers up just fine. I normally would have no reason to be concerned except that here in California, we are in the 3rd year of a drought. The drought definitely affects aquifers. As the water levels decrease, more of the surrounding sediment gets deposited into the water supply. Because the water isn't regulated I'm curious as to the make-up of the water I'm drinking?

Water accounts for 75% of our brain and muscles and 22% of our bones. It carries nutrients and oxygen to our cells, removes waste, cushions joints and regulates our body temperature. In a nutshell, having access to clean drinking water is important in maintaining our health.

I recently have started looking into alternative sources of drinking water and the choices are mind boggling to say the least! What are the differences between distilled and reverse osmosis? What are the advantages of one water filter system over another?  The water store charges 49 cents per gallon for their reverse osmosis water. The local health food store has an in-store water station that sells purified water for 30 cents a gallon. You can buy drinking water out of a vending machine for even less... 25 cents per gallon. The guy at the water store offered to test my well water for free, but the test is only for mineral content and not for disease causing pathogens. Testing for pathogens can get pretty pricey! Decisions decisions...

Honestly, I don't really care where my water comes from as long as I can be assured that what I'm drinking tastes good and is safe. Drinking fresh clean water is the foundation of our overall health and probably the #1 thing we can do maintain a healthy lifestyle. I'll drink to that!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Down to Brass Tacks

I have to admit that I have been slacking in the weight loss arena. I'm doing well with sticking to healthy eating habits but have been at the same weight for around 3 weeks now with no loss.

I had a fantastic meal at a friends house on New Years Eve. Chicken Marsala, rice pilaf, curried vegetables and banana flambé for dessert. It was beautifully executed and such a nice way to wrap up the Holiday Season.

I managed to get through the whole season with only gaining 3 lbs. from my lowest weight. So now it is down to the brass tacks of regaining my previous weight loss composure... starting today!

I spent part of New Years day at the San Jose Flea Market. I had never been there before even though it has the distinction of being the worlds largest flea market. It was a slow day there and many of the vendors were not open, but there was still a lot going on. I was amazed at the scope of the market... it is huge! There is a whole area just for produce and food stalls. Most of this area was closed down but there were still around 20 vendors open for business. I bought the most beautiful, sweetest red grapefruits I've ever had at 3 for $1.00. I also bought some sweet red grapes for 95 cents a lb. There was a vendor open that only sold fresh fruit cups. mangos on a stick, and a large assortment of fresh juices on ice in massive glass urns. I bought the tangerine juice which was fantastic! It is an incredible source for cheap fresh produce and definitely worth the drive over the hill. I'll have to go back on a weekend when it's in full swing.

It is with a light heart and a refridgerator fully stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables that I march forward into the new year. Carry on...

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Good Eats

Todays recipe comes from Erika Kerekes of the popular food blog, In Erika's Kitchen. Erika writes a fabulous food blog from her home in Santa Monica. I follow her and find her recipes and style of writing to be fun, engaging and inspiring.

I make a lot of quiche. My son loves it and eats it like he eats pizza. I buy packages of pre-made, deep dish crust frozen pie shells to keep on hand in the freezer for the quiches. They taste good and the time saving element of using the frozen shells is huge!
Most of the calories of a quiche are in the crust and I have often thought of developing a crustless quiche in order to cut down on the calories. I actually made one awhile back from an internet recipe that looked great, but the overall taste and texture was just not there for me. It was too much like eating thick scrambled eggs with vegetables. No one liked it and I ended up throwing most of it out. I've been reluctant to try it again and put it on the back burner... until now.
I was thrilled to see Erika's recent post for a crustless quiche recipe! This is the perfect recipe to kick off the New Year.  Adding the Bisquick to the custard as a binder is genius. This quiche is fabulous and has all the flavors and texture of one with crust only without all the calories. It's creamy, cheesy and packed with protein and vitamin rich nutrients. Can be eaten hot or cold, (just like pizza).
Thank you Erika for posting this fantastic recipe that is destined to be a new favorite!
Wishing all a Happy New Year and healthy eating in year 2014!