Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Batman wishes you a great Halloween. Drink up!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Day #26 - Craziest Friday Night Party Ever

Tonight is one of the nights I look forward to all week.

On Monday I realize I have no plans for Friday. Instead of frantically trying to find the hippest party in town, I start to think of my favorite way of spending the night at home: eating and drinking.

On Tuesday I think of food. Cook or take-out? Definitely take out. My kitchen needs a night of rest. Or I do...whichever.

By Wednesday I decide what kind of drink I am going to make. Dirty martini, sweet tea vodka on the rocks, or red wine. Dirty Martini it is. My favorite standby. My favorite salty friend.

Thursday I make a list of cuisines I haven't been able to eat at for a while. Sushi, Armenian, or Indian. Armenian, obviously. Loads of fluffy pita bread, creamy hummus, and pounds of juicy meat.
Really can't go wrong there.

Finally Friday rolls around and I spend all day thinking about the night. How early I think I can get home from work. The quickest way to get my take-out, avoid traffic, let the dogs out, make a drink, feed the dogs, change into pajamas, choose something on the DVR. Rough night ahead!

Claim Jumper: Garlic Cheese Bread
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

1 french bread loaf, cut into 12 slices
3 tbsp Can't Believe It's Not Butter - Light
1/2 cup fat free shredded cheddar cheese
2 tbsp light parmesan cheese, shredded
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp dried chives
1/2 tsp worchestershire sauce
dash pepper

1. Combine all ingredients for spread in small bowl. Spread into 1 side of each slice of bread.
2. In 400 degrees oven, bake toast on baking sheet for 10 minutes or until cheese melts.

Servings: 12
Nutritional Info: 112 cals, 3g fat, 17g carbs, 5g protein
Claim Jumper Nutritional Info (per slice): 160 cals

Claim Jumper: Fire-Roasted Artichoke
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

1 large artichoke
8 cups water
3 tbsp salt
juice of 1 lemon

Roasted Garlic Mayo -
3 tbsp fat free mayo
juice of half lemon
2 garlic cloves
pinch of salt

Tomato Relish-
1 medium tomato, diced
1 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp white onion, minced
1/2 tsp olive oil
1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar
pinch of salt and pepper

1. In a large pot, boil water and salt. While it starts to boil, use scissors to cut the thorny tips off of each leaf.
Once done, place in boiling water. Put lid on and boil for 50 - 60 minutes. When done, take out and let cool.
2. While artichoke cooks, combine all ingredients for tomato relish in small bowl. Cover and chill.
3. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut bottom and top off of 2 garlic cloves and take off pappery skin. Place on cookie sheet and roast in oven for 15 minutes or until it begins to brown. Let cool.
4. Once garlic cools, squeeze out roasted garlic into small bowl. Then add all other ingredients for mayo dip. Cover and chill.
5. Once artichoke is cooled, cut in half. With spoon, take out the fuzzy choke inside the heart.

6. Then roast each half of artichoke on grill or gas stove top for 3-4 minutes. Serve with both sauces on the side.

Servings: 1
Nutritional Info: 199 cals, 7g fat, 35g carbs, 7g protein
Claim Jumper: 777 cals

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Do Not Bake The Puppy

Do not mistake a puppy covered in flour for a chocolate cake.

Do not bake.

Day #25 - Ticketmaster Is A Scam

I bought concert tickets today for the first time in well over a year. The tickets were originally only $23.

Then then they added a $2.00 Facility Charge.

A $8.50 Convenience Charge.

A $2.70 Order Processing Fee.

And a $2.50 TicketPrinting Fee.

My ticket is now $37.50. Seriously Ticketmaster? You are assholes.

I'd rant more about the monopoly of Ticketmaster, but it's Thursday night and I busy watching The Real Housewives Reunion Part #1. Um hello, can we talk about the fabulousness of this please?

Claim Jumper: Meatloaf
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

2 tbsp green bell peppers, diced
1 green onion, diced
2 tbsp carrot, diced
2 garlic cloves, diced
1/3 cup egg substitute
1/3 cup nonfat milk
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
20oz lean ground turkey meat
8oz ground pork meat
1/2 cup low sugar ketchup
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp onion powder

1. In small skillet, sautee onions, peppers, garlic and carrots with pam (or olive oil).
2. In large bowl, mix all ingredients (except for 1.4 cup of ketchup) with hands. Have fun.
3. Press mixture in meat loaf pan (or if your ghetto like me, a cake pan). Top with remaining 1/4 cup of ketchup. Cook in 425 degrees for 45 minutes.

Servings: 6
Nutritional Info: 301 cals, 15g fat, 10g carbs, 32g protein
Claim Jumper Nutritional Info: 1281 cals

Claim Jumper: Cheese Potatocakes
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

3 medium red potatoes
1/3 cup fat free mexican cheese blend
1 tbsp parmesan cheese, shredded
1 green onion, diced
1 tsp cilantro, diced
pinch of salt, pepper, garlic powder

2 tbsp egg subsitute
2 tbsp nonfat milk
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 tsp olive oil

1/4 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup pico de gallo

1. Boil potatoes for 25 minutes. Once done, let cook for a few minutes.
2. Drain and mash potatoes with skin still on them. Make sure to not mash them too much and still leave them a bit chunky.
3. Add cheeses, onion, cilantro and spices to potatoes. Make 6 cakes out of the mixture.
4. In one bowl, mix egg and milk. In separate bowl mix flour and breadcrumbs.
5. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and grease baking sheet with olive oil.
6. Dip potatocakes into milk mixture, then in flour mixture. Then place onto baking sheet. Cook for 15 minutes, while flipping half way through.
7. While cakes cook, mix sour cream and salsa and chill.
8. When ready to serve, place 1 tbsp of sour mixture onto each cake.

Servings: 6
Nutritional Info (per cake): 155 cals, 3g fat, 26g carbs, 6g protein
Claim Jumper Nutritional Info: 299 cals

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Day #24 - Awarding Meat

My good friend Amanda awarded with the Kreativ Blogger Award today. Which essentially means I am required to post 7 things about me that most my readers (yes, all 5 of you) do not know.

1. I have a "Mr. Moley" on my stomach. Instead of being afraid to wear 2 piece bathing suits as a kid because of a mole above my belly button, I gave him a name and flaunted him like he was a celebrity. He's brown, awkwardly shaped, and is stuck on me forever.

2. I have absolutely no musical abilities, though I think I secretly still think that I will be a rock star one day. The little wood piece in my clarinet amused me more than the actual instrument, my guitar skills stopped flourishing after I realized my teacher would not be my boyfriend, and even my Rock Band drum abilities always somehow lost the game for me.

3. I get angry if I cannot cook for my boyfriend at least 5 times a week.

4. When I was 18 I came home with a huge tattoo of angel wings and my mother's name. Instead of being flattered (like I had hoped), she canceled my summer abroad trip to Europe. I am still bitter.

5. Every morning I have a double espresso with almond milk and 3 splendas. It never gets old.

6. The first thing I ever remember cooking was sauteed mushrooms. In elementary school my 3 best girlfriends would come over for sleep overs and my specialty was whipping up a batch of sauteed mushrooms: sliced mushrooms, salt, garlic powder, a little butter and water. No idea how I came up with this recipe, but I still make it till this day.

7. I dream of one day owning a cafe, having a bunch of kids who drive me insane, tattoos that cover 50% of my skin, and a house to call my own.

Chili's: Baby Back Ribs
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")


BBQ Sauce -
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 tsp yellow mustard
2 tbsp splenda
1/3 cup sugar free maple syrup
1/2 tsp liquid hickory smoke
1 tsp salt
pinch of garlic powder
pinch of paprika

1lb baby back ribs

1. Mix all ingredients for sauce in small sauce pan over medium heat. Once it starts to boil, reduce heat and let simmer for 30 minutes. Stir often.
2. Preheat oven to 275 degrees. Brush entire surface of ribs with BBQ. Tightly wrap ribs in foil and place on baking sheet. Bake for 2 hours, or until the meat on the ribs have pulled back about 1/2 inch. Serve with extra sauce.

Servings: 2
Nutritional Info: 502 cals, 36g fat, 9g carbs, 37g protein
Chili's Nutritional Info for "Original Ribs": 1110 cals, 81g fat, 33g carbs, 57g protein

Claim Jumper: Spicy Thai Slaw
(adapted from "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")
1/3 cup rice vinegar
1/2 cup splenda
2 tsp shiracha
juice from 1 lime
1/2 tsp salt

1 package of cole slaw mix (cabbage and carrots, shredded)
2 ounces soba noodles, cooked
1 cup baby spinach
1/2 cup zucchini, thinly sliced
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/4 cup almonds, sliced

1. Combine all ingredients for dressing in small bowl. Heat in microwave for 30 seconds. Stir well.
2. Cook soba noodles according to package. Once cooked, run under cold water. Then cut into smaller pieces.
3. Mix all ingredients together in large bowl. Chill for at least 4 hours, but overnight is best. Optional: top with siracha when serving.

Servings: 4
Nutritional Info: 115 cals, 3g fat, 22g carbs, 5g protein

Organic Treats

"Great tasting products that happen to be organic".

I recently received a package from Newman's Own Organics. I happened to receive it the day of my birthday, which I like to believe was not a coincidence.

I immediately opened and tried almost every single product I was sent. Partly because my stomach was starting to eat itself because I had not eaten yet that day, and partly because I was so excited to get something for free.

I have to admit that many times I am skeptical about organic snacks. Don't get me wrong, I believe that eating organic snacks like Newman's Organic can be much healthier than eating processed snacks...BUT this does not mean that you should start eating these snacks in excess. There is a misconception out there that just because you switch to an all organic diet, that you are suddenly eating healthy. Healthier, maybe. But not necessarily healthy.
Organic does not equal less calories or even less sugar. In the end, excess calories and sugar make you overweight and unhealthy. Therefore, moderation is ALWAYS key.

My rant is over, and my praise begins.

I was actually quite impressed by most of these products. Flavorful and somewhat addicting. But in the end, this is what won my heart: Mint Cream Filled Chocolate Cookies

On top of that, Sally from Newman's Own Organics knew how much Coda and Astral love organic dog food (which I am a huge promoter of), so she sent them some treats as well. Their first taste went something like this:

Ohhh what's that? Can we get some?


Shh...I'm going in...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Day #23 - So Far, 25 Ain't That bad

Took a little break from blogging since I turned the ripe old age of 25 and made a little more time for eating, drinking, and amazing friends. Warning: This post may lead to involuntary cravings to greasy Mexican food.

Thursday night was spent with this man:

Doing a little bit of this:

Friday night Cleopatra was serenaded by a Gynecologist:

The Gyno somehow snuck in a kiss:

Saturday night should of just been labeled "Death By Food(ies)"

(note: Keeping to birthday tradition, I did not allow anything healthy in the house this weekend. Therefore, these recipes are not healthy. Whatsoever. But oh, so worth it)

Chili's: Southwestern Eggrolls
(adapted by "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

1 tbsp olive oil
2 skinless chicken breast, cut into smaller peices
1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup green onion, diced
2/3 frozen corn
1/2 cup black beans
2 tbsp frozen spinach
1/4 cup canned jalapenos, diced
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp salt
2 cups pepper jack cheese, shredded
10 7-inch flour tortillas
3 tbsp olive oil

1. Heat up 1 tbsp olive oil in large skillet. Add chicken. Cook for 4 - 5 minutes until cooked completely. Add peppers and onions, cook for 2 minutes.
2. Add corn, beans, spinach, and all spices to skillet. Cook for 2 - 3 minutes. Then add cheese. Cook until cheese melts.
3. Spoon 1/10 of mixture in bottom section of each tortilla, fold like a burrito (bringing in both sides first, then rolling). Place on cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap, then freeze for 1 hour.
4. When ready to cook, heat up 3 tbsp of olive oil in skillet. Place eggrolls into skillet. Cook for 2 minutes on each side, or until browned. Cut each eggroll in half and serve.

Chili's: Chili Queso
(adapted by "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")


16 oz Velveeta Cheese, cut into cubes
15 oz can Hormel Chili (turkey will work) without beans
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp cumin

1. Combine all ingredients into medium saucepan over medium heat. Let simmer for 30 minutes while stirring often.
Chili's: Enchilada Soup
(adapted by "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

1 tbsp olive oil
1 lb skinless chicken breast (or thighs will do), cut into smaller peices
1 cup onion, diced
4 cup chicken broth
1 cup masa harina
3 cups water
1 1/2 cup enchilada sauce
16 oz Velveeta Cheese, cut into cubes
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp chili powder

Optional Garnish:
tortilla chips
shredded cheddar cheese

1. In large sauce pan, heat chicken in oil over high heat. Cook for 5 minutes or until cooked. Add onions and cook for 2 minutes minutes. Add chicken broth.
2. In medium bowl, whisk the masa harina with the 3 cups of water until smooth. Add to sauce pan.
3. Add all other ingredients. Bring to boil then let simmer for 1 hour. When serving, top with shredded chips and tortilla chips.

Chili's: Salsa
(adapted by "Top Secret Restaurant Recipes 2")

14.5oz can diced tomatoes with chilies
1/4 cup canned jalapenos
1 tbsp lime juice
2 tsp salt
1/2 cup white onion, cut into smaller peices
1 tsp siracha

1. Combine all ingredients in food processor or blender for a few seconds. Make sure not to puree too much, being that you want it to be a little chunky. Chill for at least 5 hours.