Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Happy Leftovers!

I would like to enter this picture as exhibit A.  What is a person to do when he/she wants to dine out without overeating his/her calorie budget?  Ask for a box!  I had the pleasure of going to lunch with a good friend today.  We went to Accurso's.  They have a very affordable lunch menu.  Everything on it is $5.00!!!  This was a good thing and a bad thing.  The lunch portions are smaller than their regular entrees (+).  However, they are so affordable that I was naughty and ordered a salad (and this wasn't a side salad) and pasta (-).  I don't have a picture of the Napa salad, because I ate it all.  Let me correct myself.  I scarfed it all.  It was fantastic.  The salad was a romaine and spinach mix tossed with tomatoes, grapes, raisins, and goat cheese.  Luckily, the white balsamic dressing was served on the side so I only used a couple teaspoons.  I always forget to just ask for dressing on the side anyway.  I could easily make this salad at home, but I think I would sub in a few walnuts or pecans for the raisins.  I pushed some of those out, because they can be loaded with sugar.

I was torn between the salad and the Pasta Diavolo, which came highly recommended by the waiter.  At $5 a pop I had to spring for both items.  Now in my defense my husband, Carl, has to eat gluten-free so we rarely go to Italian restaurants (He hates it when I say this! Shh! Don't tell!).  That is not to say that I am deprived in any way.  He cooks the most wonderful, gluten-free pasta and rice dishes at home.  He is the reason that I have to watch what I eat for breakfast and lunch, because in the evening he FEEDS me!  I can't stress this point enough.  He makes Jamie Oliver's Proper Bloke's Sausage Fusilli, Bobby Flay's Green Rice, amazing risotto bianco, his own marinara, etc.  This past Saturday he made what I believe is called "Sunday Gravy."  He went loosely off of a recipe, but he put his own spin on it.  It's basically a red tomato based sauce flavored with onions and garlic that cooks low and slow on the stove with a pork shoulder and pork ribs.  The pork literally falls apart, and then you serve it over pasta.  I am vastly over-simplifying it, but you get the picture.  He is an awesome cook, and I am very blessed!  Okay, okay!  The gluten-free defense doesn't really hold up.  Now I enter exhibit B. 

I made a "mental" commitment to take home half the pasta.  I use the term "mental" loosely, because I must have been mental when I thought that would actually work out.  The lunch portions were small, but they weren't that small.  I ended up bringing home about 1/3 of the dish, and as you can see it came with a slice of garlic toast.  It was delicious.  I could have stopped at half if the waiter had come to check on me at just the right moment.  It wasn't his fault.  I was weak.  He did his job well.  The pasta did not disappoint.  He said it was his favorite thing on the menu, and I loved it.  I will definitely go back, but next time I will stick to one item off the lunch menu instead of totally pigging out. 

The best part of this whole experience is that I'm not finished with my pasta yet.  Carl and I are fending for ourselves for dinner, because I have the Made to Crave group tonight.  Exhibit B is my dinner.  I should have saved half my lunch.  Oh, well.  Happy leftovers to me!!! 

On a side note, I want to give a big shout out to my Uncle Jerry!  I'm pretty sure he was the 2,000th hit on my blog today.  Yippee!  Woohoo!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Banana Bread Quaker Oatmeal with Peanut Butter

I usually blog about a certain restaurant or lunches to fix at home, but today I just want to blog about what I am eating today.  Maybe it will inspire you.  I started the day with a delicious breakfast at 6:20 a.m.  I had one packet of the Weight Control Quaker Banana Bread Oatmeal (160 calories).  I added just a teaspoon of Skippy Natural Peanut Butter (32 calories).  I only added enough hot water to make it the consistency of cookie batter.  It was off the charts delicious!  Elvis was really onto something with those banana and peanut butter sandwiches.  My hat's off to the King.  There is just something magical about that paring.  However, fried banana and peanut butter sandwiches are no good for the waistline.  I will stick with my oatmeal concoction.

After my breakfast I took a long, power walk with a client.  All I had with breakfast was water so at 7:40 a.m. I was ready for my coffee.  I had cut the caffeine for quite awhile, but now I am back on the sauce.  I stick to just one a day.  I'm currently hooked on Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino (180 calories).  I know they make the light kind, but it isn't available at my local downtown Cosentino's (Boo!).  I would like to point out that I had just worked out beforehand so I was ready for a recovery drink.  A recent study determined that chocolate milk was the perfect post workout recovery drink, because it is a perfect ratio of 4:1 carbs to protein.  My mocha was an alarming 31g of sugar (scream!), 33g carbs, and 7g of protein.  It's pretty close to a 5:1 ratio if you are rounding up.  Feel free to check my math.  I guess I will have to work out every morning to justify my recovery mocha.  By the way if you look closely at the pic above you can see me in the reflection of the window taking the picture with my Ipad.  I like to think the mocha is admiring the view of downtown, but it's not.  Mocha's don't have eyes.

So 10:00 a.m. rolls around, a client cancelled, and I'm already hungry for lunch.  I was planning to wait for my husband to eat lunch with me at noon.  So I go through the regular questions.  Am I just bored?  Am I looking for stress relief or comfort?  Nope.  I'm hungry!  There was a leftover piece of roasted chicken breast in the fridge.  Score!  I weighed it on my food scale, and it was a mere 2 ounces (93 calories).  How can I make this more satisfying?  Cheese!  The answer is always cheese.  I melted half a slice of sharp cheddar (40 calories) on top of the chicken in the microwave. It was delicious.  The chicken was perfectly seasoned.  I was careful just to heat it up rather than actually cook it.  It was still juicy.  Half a slice of cheese was just enough to get the taste.  I had about four baby carrots just to fill my stomach a little more.  I'm doing the Made to Crave study at church, and the author says she has never craved a carrot stick.  I haven't either.  It was just a filler, and carrots are full of Vitamin A. 

Now you are caught up to speed.  I have consumed a little over 505 calories.  I'm going to eat a light lunch with Carl, and spend the afternoon making some jewelry.  I already have a few items of jewelry online on Etsy under my maiden name.  I have had that going for awhile, off and on.  However, I am most excited about the new line of jewelry that I am working on.  It's called Blessed Youth.  A portion of the proceeds will go towards a local Kansas City Christian charity that helps troubled teens who are going through issues with sex as a substitute for love, substance abuse, depression, and suicidal tendencies.  The line is going to consist of earrings and necklaces, all around $20 and under.  The style of the jewelry will be edgy, punk, Rock N' Roll, and Christian.  There will be lots of crosses, skulls, serpents, etc.  I realize it sounds like these things do not go together.  That's part of the art of it.  It won't be for everyone.  Just like you won't catch me wearing a WWJD armband anytime soon, but I'll wear a cross necklace and a black leather jacket with dress pants.  I wouldn't suggest any of the Blessed Youth jewelry as a gift for your grandmother unless grandma has a tattoo sleeve that she doesn't regret.

I will eventually have some items available online.  It is a work in progress.  Here is a sneak peek:

 The charms on the necklace are an apple, a snake, and a cross.  It represents the fall of man, the death, and the resurrection.

Now, I'm off to lunch.  I have at least 1,000 more calories to spend today.  Happy eats!

Friday, September 2, 2011

It's a Small World

I just stumbled upon this website through google.

It turns out the author is a dietitian in the Kansas City area!  Awesome!  I thought I would pass this along to everyone, because she has written about some low-calorie meals at some restaurants that I never intended to cover.  She has also written about some low-cal meals from some of the local Kansas City restaurants.  There is a pocket size book that you can order off her website.  If you just can't wait, then you can download the e-book.  Add this one to your tool belt.

Pocket Book Dietitian: Guide to 500 Calorie Restaurant Meals

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On-site Personal Training & Nutrition Coaching in the Kansas City metropolitan area. I offer personal training at your home or work site. I also offer personalized online nutrition plans and corporate wellness programs. Contact me at saramoser@choicescoach.com with any questions.