Friday, January 28, 2011

Orange Chipotle Chicken

  Oh, we SEE you’re back for more?????DSC_4261 Yes!  We’re so excited!DSC_4262

Wait – you’re not just here to see us?  You want food too?  Boooooo.   DSC_4263Well, food there will be today.  Get ready to become hungry.  Open-mouthed  I’ve blogged about these cookies before (maybe even twice before, I think??) but they are just so dang good that I can’t stop thinking about them.  In fact, right now as I’m writing this – I am doing everything in my power NOT to go grab one.  I’ve had 3 today and that’s probably enough!  These are the Carrot Oatmeal Cookies from 101 cookbooks, you’ll recall.   DSC_4265

OH man – I could just EAT this picture.  Hey – and can you tell that I am trying to make the best of the daylight for pictures lately!  Yay! Can’t wait for summer food pics though.  I’ve had enough winter darkness.DSC_4267

Speaking of winter – kids went for a ride on the snowmobile today with Eric.  Its not my most favorite activity for them (its stinky and somewhat dangerous) but it definitely helps to have them out of my hair when I’m working on pulling off an awesome meal for them when they come in. DSC_4283

Today’s special: Orange Chipotle Chicken from Clean Eating’s February 2011 issue. DSC_4285

-1 tsp chile powder
-1/2 tsp ground cumin
-1/2 tsp sea salt, divided
-1 tsp safflower oil  (you could probably use olive oil if you wanted to)
-4 boneless skinless chicken breast, about 1 lb. rinsed, patted dry, pounded to 1/2-inch thick
-Juice 1 medium navel orange (1/3 cup orange juice)
-2 tbsp pure maple syrup
-1 tbsp chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
-1 tsp orange zest
-2 cups cooked brown rice
-1/4 packed cup chopped cilantro leaves (I omitted this b/c Eric is NOT a cilantro fan.  I know, weird.)

: In a small bowl, combine chile powder, cumin, and 1/4 tsp salt. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet on medium-high. Tilt skillet to coat bottom lightly. Season both sides of chicken with chile-cumin mixture and cook for 3 minutes per side or until no longer pink in center. Remove from skillet and set aside.
Two: Add orange juice and maple syrup to juice and bits left in skillet and cook for 1 minute to thicken slightly (until it measures 1/4 cup liquid) stirring constantly. Remove from heat, stir in chipotle chiles in adobo sauce and orange zest. Add chicken back to skillet, return to heat and cook for 1 minutes on medium high turning constantly.
Three: In a medium bowl, combine rice, cilantro and remaining 1/4 tsp salt. Serve chicken over rice and spoon any excess glaze over top of chicken pieces.
Calories: 283, Fat: 4g, Carbs: 32g, Fiber 2g

The arsenal of ingredients…

  Chipotle chili pepper and orange zest hanging out with the freshly squeezed OJ!DSC_4286

Chicken! DSC_4288

I chopped up the chicken and tossed it in the sauce that way.  The recipe calls for you to leave the breasts as they are and toss them that way.  I think chopping them up helped each piece to soak up the delicious juice.   DSC_4290

Finished product!  This was really, really good.  I urge you to make it.  Now.   As you can see, I added broccoli.  Children need vegetables, you know.DSC_4291

We decided to top it off with a delicious, healthy dessert.  If you have never made Banana Soft Serve, well, I urge you to make this as well.  Again, this is something I have blogged about before, but again – it deserves another mention.  All you do is take 2 frozen bananas and put them in your food processor.  Let it run for 5 minutes or so (scrape down the edges every so often) and voila – you will have ice cream.  That’s it.   So here are the frozen nanners.  I recently bought 3 pounds of ripe bananas for 99 cents (SCORE!) so I have a bunch of bananas in the freezer just WAITNG to be used for this.  I chopped them up straight from the freezer and it wasn’t a problem.DSC_4293

  My assistant.DSC_4295

This is after a few minutes.  The brown blob you see there is Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter.  It gives the soft serve a little somethin’ extra.  Taaaaasty. DSC_4296

Finished product.  Seriously delicious.  And good for you!  All it is is bananas!  (Well, and dark chocolate PB too – but it tastes just as yummy without, I swear!) DSC_4297

See – he agrees!  Good stuff!


Well, that’s it for now.  There is hockey to watch!  Open-mouthed

Fitness Friday ~ Zumba Fitness

It seems like Zumba has just exploded in terms of popularity in the last few months!  Or it could be just that it wasn’t on MY radar until a few months ago.  It seems like once you get into something, that you start to hear about it or see it mentioned A LOT.  I took my first live Zumba class a few months ago and I was immediately hooked.  I danced from a very young age all the way up until I graduated high school and found that this was RIGHT up my alley.  I walked out of that first class and told Eric something like, “that instructor better watch out  - cuz I’m gonna take her job!”  Tongue out  Now, fast forward a few months and I’ve decided to give that a go!  I’m taking the Zumba Instructor training course next weekend in Minneapolis and I’m so excited to do this!  I have never taught ANYTHING before, so I’m a bit nervous about actually teaching a class.  I KNOW I can dance, but dance AND teach at the same time?  I dunno.  I’m hoping that after I take the class, I’ll feel more confident about my teaching abilities.  I contacted our local YMCA to see about teaching there and it sounds like they are ready for more Zumba instructors due to how popular the class there has become.  Right now, there is just the one instructor and only 3 classes offered per week.  And all are at lame times, I must say.  So I hope that by hiring me on – more people can get a chance to try out Zumba.  It really is SO fun.  You completely forget that you are “working out” because of how fun it.  I know that a lot of people are a little shy about dancing in front of others b/c you are worried about how you might “look” or the ever popular excuse,  “I’m extremely uncoordinated."  I assure you – no one is watching you.  No one cares about what you are doing.  Everyone is so concerned with their own goofy selves that no one pays any attention to anyone else in the room.  The workout always FLIES by and is always a lot of fun.  So if you haven’t tried it yet – you really should!  A friend of mine lost 4 pounds in the last few weeks from adding Zumba into her routine on a regular basis.  So I think this is definitely a fun AND effective workout.  And I’ll for sure keep you all posted on how the training course goes!  I’m so excited!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Goat Cheese & Kalamata Panini

  Behold!  My tasty lunch:


This is the Goat Cheese & Kalamata Panini from the February 2011 issue of Clean Eating.  It was pretty much awesome.  So awesome, that I’ve had it 2 days in a row for lunch.  Well, that and I have a crusty loaf of bread to use up.  Can’t let it go to waste! Tongue out DSC_4212

  I couldn’t find the recipe anywhere online, so I guess I’ll go ahead and type it out for you.  You’re welcome! Wink

Goat Cheese & Kalamata Paninis

Clean Eating Magazine, February 2011

Serves 4. Hands on time: 7 minutes Total Time: 11 minutes


14 pitted Kalamata olives, chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped red onion

4 cloves garlic
2 tsp dried basil
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 12 ounce whole grain italian loaf bread, halved lenthwise
2 cups baby spinach leaves
2 1/2 oz goat cheese, crumbled
1 large tomato, sliced into 8 rounds
Olive oil cooking spray


One: In a medium bowl, combine olives, onion, garlic, basil, pepper flakes and vinegar.  Place bread halves on a cutting board, cut side up and spoon olive mixture onto bottom half of bread.  Top with spinach, cheese and tomato.  Top with other half of bread and press down lightly to adhere.  Using a serrated knife, cut bread into 4 equal pieces. 

Two: Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Coat skillet with cooking spray, then add sandwiches.  Add weight to sandwiches by covering them with a sheet of aluminum foil, then topping them with a dinner plate and a few bread plates.  Cook for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes or until lightly golden on bottom.  Remove plates and foil and flip sandwiches over.  Again, place foil and plates on and cook 2 more minutes until browned on bottom.  OR Do what I did! Use a panini press and safe yourself the headache!Smile 

So yesterday Dylan was messing with the magnets on the fridge and next thing I knew – he was doing this:

DSC_4216He figured out that magnets work on the garbage can, too! DSC_4217Not sure why he chose his cousin’s pictures, but um, okay?! DSC_4219Wink DSC_4222

Avos watched from her perch and enjoyed her Green Monster.  DSC_4224More shenanigans ensued today. 

  DSC_4237 DSC_4238
They wanted to dress up with scarves and hats.  The mummy look was a big hit! DSC_4241
DSC_4245 DSC_4249 DSC_4250

And tonight’s dinner – Carne Asada Chicken “Chipotle” Style Burritos. Basically, I was wishing we could have Chipotle and this is what happened.  I marinated the chicken in Carne Asada sauce all day, broiled it up (broiler high, 5-6 minutes per side) and diced it up.  Then added the usual fixings: brown rice, sour cream, cheese, pinto beans, salsa (and just now I’m remembering I had avocado too, but forgot!  Dang it!!!!) in a whole grain wrap.  Good stuff!    DSC_4252

Well, that’s all for tonight.  I’ve got some guilty pleasure television shows to catch up on!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Silver Foxette

  I can’t lie and say I’ve been too busy to blog.  Nope, can’t do it.  Guess my inspiration (or probably MOTIVATION) went out the window for a few days.  Surely, it got cold and had to come back inside.  With that, I’m back.  We’re all back.  Avos welcomes you:

You’ve missed this funny face, no? DSC_4207

And perhaps you have missed the tasty treats?  Here we have Peanut Butter Banana Oats.  What you do to make this is: 1/4 cup rolled oats, 1/4 cup oat bran, cinnamon (just dump a tsp in or so), a tablespoon or so of brown sugar, 1 cup of milk of choice (almond milk is an excellent one), 1/2 of a sliced banana (thinly sliced works awesome).  Bring to a boil in a saucepan and just keep stirring until its as thick as you want it.  Finish it off with a glob of peanut butter.  Perfection.  Creamy, oaty, peanut buttery perfection.  Avos and I enjoyed this A LOT. DSC_4209In my own defense, we WERE busy last night.  It was parent’s night at Dylan’s school.   DSCN1343

They did a number of small performances for us.  Dylan always made sure we were watching. DSCN1344 DSCN1347And they entertained us with their playing too.  This is Dylan and his best friend Evan having a “snowball” fight.  They were pretty funny and at one point declared it, “KIDS AGAINST ADULTS!!!!”  We took cover.   DSCN1349 DSCN1350

They did some ice fishing.   DSCN1357

And took a class photo for the newspaper.  I took the point and shoot (mistake!) so that’s why these pics are all so craptastic.  Oh well.  I also took video with my phone for Dylan to watch.  He pretty much has taken over the Droid and made it his own.  So now he has more videos of himself to watch.  If I could pry it out of his hands, I’d post a video.  We’ll see. DSCN1360 DSCN1361 DSCN1366

We had no choice to bring Avos with us.  There was a bit of a mishap before we came to school when some amateur babysitter’s (at the YMCA child watch) put what they thought was a pull up on her.  Um, yeah, swim diaper and pull up are NOT the same thing, ladies! So our arms may or may not have reeked like urine. Eye-rolling  Anywho, she still had fun and her pants dried off in no time!  Tongue outDSCN1370 DSCN1376 DSCN1378

And finally, for those who are interested – I transformed from Silver Foxette back to a normal looking 30 something today.  Grays are gone people!

hair1 hair2 I think it looks fab!  Very subtle highlights that I’m told will look natural as it grows out.  ???  One can hope!  Isn’t it ironic that 2 years ago I stopped dying my hair so I could go back to my natural color and then all of a sudden I start seeing grays?  REDONK!  Oh well.  Such is life.


Well, I promise there will be food and fun pics in the days to come.  Well, now that I’ve said it, I better follow through.  Later!