Honey, can I turn on the heat?

It’s freezing here today.  The thermostat has barely hit 65.  And, its raining.  In fact, I can’t remember the last time it didn’t rain.  Very unseasonable for this time of year. 

We’ve been traveling far more than I desire to this summer.  Off on vacation with the in-laws, picnics and bbq’s, local fairs, bridal showers in New York, and the latest – SOULFEST, a four day Christian music festival and camping excursion with 6 of our teens from youth group.   

I’m plum exhausted.

Next week is the last trip of the summer: New York again for my baby sister’s wedding.  The 8-hour trip gets longer every time.  Fly?  What a great idea, except the nearest airport is over 2 hours from my parents house.  Can you say boondocks?

Upon returning I plan to practice agoraphobia.   Hibernation will commence September 1st.  All joking aside I’m really looking forward to fall.  Back to schedules, cooler weather (although 65 is pretty cool), leaves, pumpkin spice candles, far less tourists (especially ones that go 10 miles below the speed limit in the left hand lane) and fall cooking (read: soup/stew/chili).

Are you ready for fall or are you clinging every last bit of summer?

I decided to take advantage of the weather and day off and cook me up some chili.  DH won’t touch the stuff seeing as how “everythings is all mixed together”.   Looks like chicken fingers for him tonight.

Three Bean Turkey Chili

                

Click below for the recipe and more pics!

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Mexican Fiesta

OK, not a full blown – mariachi band, tortilla-eating, salsa dancing good time…but Mexican food none-the- less. Slightly lame Mexican food…but hey, what do you want? I’m not Mexican! Well, depending on who you ask I’m not. My mother-in-law thinks that because I am of Portuguese (<25%) decent, and Portugal is next to Spain, and in Spain they speak Spanish, and in Mexico they speak Spanish…so really, it’s the same thing. Help me Lord.

Someday I’m going to mess with her and show up at her house riding a donkey with a sombrero on my head. Or maybe the next time she comes over I’ll frame a picture of myself photo-shopped next to Juan Valdez. Shoot, he’s Colombian. Well in Columbia they speak Spanish so I’m sure she wouldn’t notice the difference.

Can you tell I’ve thought about this WAY more than necessary? Sí?

Mexican Rice

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 sprays cooking spray
  • 4 cup cooked brown rice
  • 1 1/4 cup salsa
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 15 oz canned fat free refried beans
  • 10 oz frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 4 oz canned green chili peppers, mild, diced
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 3/4c. Black or Pinto Beans
  • 3/4 cup low-fat shredded cheddar cheese, divided (I like WW Shredded Mexican Cheese!)
  • 2 Tbsp cilantro, fresh, chopped (optional; for garnish)

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Grilled Peanut Butter and Banana Split Sandwich…

Drool.

Peanut Butter Boy, has me on this seemingly unending peanut butter kick.  Check out the cookies he whipped up recently.  Have mercy!  So last night I was flipping through some back issues of Cooking Light and found this recipe.  I got up earlyto make it and it didn’t disappoint.  Doesn’t it look great?  It was a little heavy on the nutritional info, but I managed to lighten it up a bit (6 points instead of 9!).

Click on “read more” for the play-by-play and recipe.

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Sloppy Joe, Sloppy, Sloppy Joe

You remember the SNL skit back in, oh ’94 (!) when Adam Sandler and the late Chris Farley performed “Lunch Lady Land” don’t you? The chorus of the song goes something like this:sloppy-joe_small.jpg

Sloppy joe.
Slop, sloppy joe.
Sloppy joe.
Slop, sloppy joe.
Come on.
Sloppy joe.
Slop, sloppy joe.
Yeah.
Sloppy joe.

I’ve been singing it all night while making that —>

Click on more for the recipe and lots of pictures!

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Creamy Cheese Spaghetti

One thing that’s been really difficult to cut back is pasta. Who doesn’t love a big plate of spaghetti and meatballs? Considering my family heritage, I was practically born with a meatball in my mouth.

Because Weight Watchers is so flexible I’ve learned how to eat pasta and still stay on track. It all has to do with portions. When I made the recipe below I was shocked to find out how much 8oz of pasta really is. Momma Mia do I have a lot to learn!

After all the ingredients are added together you do get a nice size portion for 6 WWPs and it IS delicious! Surprisingly so.

Cream Cheese Capellini
Creamy Cheese Spagetti

Serves 4 (1 1/4 c portion)

  • 8oz. Whole Wheat Pasta (I like Healthy Harvest)
  • 2 tsp. EVOO
  • 3 slices Canadian bacon
  • 1/2 c. Halved Cherry Tomatoes
  • 3 Garlic cloves, crushed through a press
  • 6oz. Baby spinach (make sure you wash your spinach before cooking)
  • 1c. Fat-free ricotta cheese
  • 1c. Shredded fat-free mozzarella
  • 1tsp Salt
  • 12gm Finely grated Romano cheese (3 gm per person)

1. Cook the spaghetti according to package directions.

2. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid.

3. While the water for the pasta is heating up, heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the canadian bacon, tomatoes and garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, until the tomatoes are softened, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach in batches, string just until each batch is wilted.

4. Add the spaghetti, reserved cooking liquid, cheeses and salt. Cook, stirring frequently until the cheeses are melted.

5. Garnish with Romano cheese. Serve immediately.

creamy-cheese-spagetti.jpg

One serving (1-1/4cups) – 6WWP