Thursday, October 14, 2010

Yum-O...Pork Souvlaki Saute with Tzatziki

We've been trying to incorporate new -and healthy- meals into our usual lineup.  We basically eat the same meals over and over in rotation. I enjoy them but my taste buds are getting bored. So I went on the hunt for new and unusual things. I came across this recipe on the Food and Wine website. It's normally served with whole wheat pitas but we didn't have any and didn't feel like running out to the store. So we just ate the pork as is and dipped it into the yogurt dip. We haven't had pork in years and I have to say this was delicious! Definitely going to be a staple in our rotation.

Pork Souvlaki Saute with Tzatziki
From:  Food and Wine Magazine

2 boneless pork chops, cuts into thin strips
1 red onion, cut into 1/2 inch wedges
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 garlic cloves, mashed to a paste
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 cup Greek or plain non-fat yogurt
1/3 cucumber, finely diced

1. In a bowl, mix together the pork, onion, olive oil, lemon juice, oregano, and 1 clove of mashed garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Let sit for 20 minutes.

2. Mix the yogurt, cucumber, and the remaining 1 clove of garlic. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Heat a saute pan, and add the pork and onion mixture. Cook until browned, stirring occasionally. I let mine get nicely browned and it took about 10 minutes.

4. Serve the pork and onions with the tzatziki. You can also serve it with the whole wheat pitas. We ate ours just dipped in the tzatziki and served it with steamed broccoli and a sweet potato.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I've lost my mojo...

I've been trying to get back into working out since I had surgery but it isn't going very well. I decided last night it's because I have no real plan in shape. I was just doing things willy nilly. So, in order to get back on track I've decided to log my workouts and make a plan. Hopefully, this will keep me focused and motivated. I'm only 15 pounds away from my high school weight!!!! Whooo hooo! Although, I've decided that losing the weight isn't my main priority anymore. I'm in the healthy weight range for my height.  Holy moly. I didn't think that would ever happen again. I had kinda resigned myself to being the fat girl for the rest of my life.  Now I just want to be in shape. Tight and toned is my new goal!

I think this new plan has rejuvenated me. I woke up this morning and got right to it. I didn't have to talk myself into it like I normally do! When I was finished I felt great and ready to start the day.  I started off today with a butt blasting workout!  I want a butt that fits into jeans. =)  Actually, mine has no problem fitting into's filling them out I have a problem with! I have flat butt-itis. So, to hopefully fix this ailment I did the following routine.

1. Jump squats and backward lunge (10 reps)
2. Prone hip extensions with leg crossovers (20 reps)
3. Bulgarian squats (20 reps each leg)
4. Mountain climbers (30 reps)

Repeat 4 times

I also went on a very slow 4.4 mile run. Hopefully, my mojo is back and I'll be sporting a toned tushy soon!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

My favorite time of year!

October is absolutely my favorite month of the year. The smell of the damp earth, the cool air, beautiful leaves, football games, cardigan sweaters, the food - good grief- I could go on and on.  I'll spare you the rambling though and get on to the best part. The food! It's the perfect time of year to finally turn on the oven and do some baking (actually, for Jay to do some baking). I really love a good soup/stew/chili too. Here are two new favorites to start off October with. First, the ridiculously easy (and healthy!) zucchini soup.

Extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
2 lbs zucchini (about 3 or 4 zucchinis), roughly chopped
3 cups chicken stock (use vegetable stock to keep this vegetarian)
3/4  – 1 cup loose basil leaves
1 Parmesan cheese rind
Parmesan cheese, for garnish
Toasted pine nuts, for garnish

1. Heat a drizzle of olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Saute the onion for 3-4 minutes and then add the garlic. Cook for an additional minute. (Savor the aroma and think about how great you're going to smell when you exercise later!)

2. Add the zucchini and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes.

3. Add the chicken stock and cheese rind and bring to a simmer. Simmer for 15 minutes.

4. Remove the Parmesan rind. Puree the soup in a food processor with the basil.

5. Serve garnished with shaved Parmesan cheese and toasted pine nuts.

6. Slurp 'til your heart's content.

And the perfect fall treat- Pumpkin Pie Bars

1-1/3 cups flour
3/4 cup  granulated sugar, divided
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup  (1-1/2 sticks) cold butter or margarine
1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
1/2 cup  chopped walnuts (optional)
1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
3 eggs
1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
1 Tbsp.  pumpkin pie spice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. HEAT oven to 350°F. Line 13×9-inch pan with parchment, with ends extending over sides.

2. Mix flour, 1/4 granulated sugar and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts (optional).

3. RESERVE 1 cup of the oat mixture and press remaining mix onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 15 min.

4. Beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, pumpkin and spice with mixer until well blended. Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture

5. BAKE 25 min.; cool 10 min. Use parchment to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely.

Pumpkin Pie Bars recipe

Hope everyone enjoys their day! I'm off to pretend I live in a state in which autumn actually exists!