Tag Archives: Chocolate

Derby Day Brownies and Last Chance for the Giveaway!

Hi, and happy Friday!! I’ve had a certain little recipe in mind all afternoon, and I couldn’t wait to come home and play in my kitchen. I’ll tell you about it in a bit. Here’s a little sneak preview…

Mmm....

It was so terrible when I had to lick the bowl! My life is so hard. :-)

I started the day off with a little bit of chocolate too, but nothing like what’s in my mixer bowl. I made a smoothie with a packet of chocolate weight watchers smoothie mix, a cup of almond milk, 1/4 cup of canned mandarin oranges, and a bit of ice. I’m so happy with the magic bullet. Making a quick smoothie really couldn’t be easier! Just like yesterday, I also had a toasted banana wheat bran scone topped with PB2 and pomegranate jelly and a cup of un-pictured coconut coffee. 

BrekkieI got busy this morning, and, when I finally got back to my desk, it was time for serious lunch. Let me tell you what you are looking at here. This, my friends, is what I like to call “Potato Island Chili.” Giving it a clever name made it more entertaining. I might be a bit like a toddler sometimes. The big thing hiding under all of the melted cheese is the other half of the potato I microbaked a couple of nights ago. It’s floating in the rest of the Trader Joe’s turkey chili from the can I opened up last night. A little island of potato goodness in a sea of spice really did the trick and soothed the hunger beast in a hurry. 

Potato Island ChiliAfter that, I had my very favorite lowfat yogurt, Wallaby Dulce De Leche (seriously love it!!) with some fiber one and a little Cadbury Crunchie. This little collection made me so happy! 

Dessert!Eventually, I made it around to my pink lady and PB snack. I didn’t have time for it this morning. :-( It was good, as it always is. 

The UsualSometime after that, I decided to play with my food, and I created a quick little highlighter snack garden. The centers are little vanilla wafer/pb/prune nibblies. If you aren’t someone who plays with your food, you should give it a try!! I had fun plucking the centers out of the flowers and chomping away.

SnackgardenI mentioned yesterday that there were no more instant oatmeal packets in my desk drawer stash. How would I feed my new afternoon oatmeal habit? There was nearly a crisis (ok, not really, just indulge my oatmeal related dramatic flair…), but I found a packet of instant cream of wheat in the pantry this morning and tossed it in my lunch bag. I fixed up a little container with brown sugar, vanilla almonds and a few dried cherries and tossed that in the bag too since the cream of wheat was the plain variety. I should have dried cherries more often. They really made this bowl pop!

Afternoon Cereal SnackWhen I got home, I wanted to eat my last turkey burger, but I didn’t want it in burger form so I put it on top of a big pile of spinach with some goat cheese, mandarin oranges and a few pumpkin seeds. I then drizzled it with a bit of balsamic vinegar. The cilantro in the burgers went well with the little bit of citrus, and the goat cheese made it all a little bit creamy. With the warmer weather, you should expect to see lots of salads like this one. It’s my summertime go to meal for sure!

Serious SaladAfter that, I couldn’t decide what I wanted. I think I often have my eats all planned out, but I’m trying to figure out what I’m really in the mood for before I start nibbling. I figure that is a good way to make more satisfying choices. It turned out that I was really in the mood for some Peanut Butter Puffins and Ghirardelli milk chocolate chips. I love letting the chips melt in my mouth. :-)

Chockie PB FixLater, I realized that I hadn’t had my evening ice cream. I’m out of LaLoo’s vanilla snowflake, so I had a So Delicious neapolitan mini-sandwich. These are so good!! The strawberry end of the sandwich is my favorite, so I always start with the chocolate and save the pink stuff for last.

Mini-LoveThe other thing I had this evening was a Derby Day Brownie, still warm from the oven!!

Derby Day BrownieThe Kentucky Derby is tomorrow, and I’ll be going to hang out with some friends (and my favorite puppy dog) for mint juleps, horses and… brownies! Inspired by the julep, I wanted to make a brownie that included both mint and bourbon. I made a few tweaks to this recipe for Junior Mint Brownies from Cooking Light. Since I just tweaked it a little (including the title), I thought I’d just provide the link. 

In case you didn’t notice, there was a box of Junior Mints in the freezer jungle. I like mine frozen!! I used most of the box, so that’s one more thing out of the jungle. Woo hoo! These are some of the best brownies I’ve ever made, and I’ve made plenty of brownies! Seriously, this won’t be the last time I make these! Here are my little changes:

1. As usual, I substituted 1/4 cup of sturdier flour (tonight I used whole wheat flour) for 1/4 cup of all purpose flour. That means I used 1/4 cup of ww flour and 3/4 cups of all purpose flour.

2. I subbed 1/4 cup egg beaters for the eggs.

3. I added 2 teaspoons of bourbon to the egg/cocoa/sugar mixture. If I hadn’t seen myself put the bourbon in, I wouldn’t really know it was there. Honestly, there might be a subtle bourbon flavor, but I wouldn’t bother to add it if I made these again. 

Just look at this:

How Could This Be Bad?Holy moly! The batter was so thick, it reminded me of fudge. 

Before the BakeYou should be able to tell how thick the batter was based on the fact that the brownies retained the little lumps and bumps on the surface after baking.

After the BakeThese are fudgy, minty and they exceeded my expectations by leaps and bounds. Cooking Light rarely steers me wrong!! Plus, my calorie calculator says that 1/16 of the pan (with my tweaks) is 117 calories. Not bad. Not bad at all!! I can’t wait to take these over to share with my friends tomorrow, and to share a few more with myself. :-)

Now that I’m sufficiently “chocolated” for the evening, I need to do a few things around the apartment and then get to bed. I’ll be getting up in the morning to go to the farmer’s market, and I’m hoping to go for a run outside too if the weather is good. I’m trying to get out of the gym as much as possible and into the fresh air!

Do you watch the Derby? Do you wear a funny hat or drink a mint julep while you are cheering for your favorite horse? I have a big blue hat that just might need to make an appearance. We’ll see.

Remember, you only have two more hours to enter my giveaway! I’m planning to choose a winner (and hopefully post the results… ) tomorrow.Whatever you do this weekend, I hope you have a good one! Ciao for now bloggies, and try these brownies. Seriously!

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Filed under Baking, Bananas, Chocolate, cooking, Cooking Light, diet, Food, Recipes, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story

Wednesday Reruns and a Giveaway Reminder!

Hi!! I hope everyone had a nice day! There was no sunny lunch picnic in the cards for me today, but there was an umbrella. A chilly rain has been falling all day, and when it’s raining out, all I want to do is nap! How about you? Despite the weather, I had a pretty productive day. Thank goodness! I’m trying to get things wrapped up at work since I’m leaving for Alaska on the Monday after next. I’m hoping to tie up as many loose ends as I can before I go. I can’t wait to be on vacation!

I had several food reruns today, but I think that’s a good thing. I love a warm breakfast on a rainy day. I started out with a bowl that looks almost exactly like yesterday’s breakfast:

Another Bananabrannerriffic Bowl25 grams of oat bran

15 grams of wheat bran (the rest of my little bag… I need to buy some more from the bulk bin…)

10 grams of Jay Robb’s vanilla whey protein powder

1 cup of water

1 1/2 Tbsp of sugar free Smucker’s syrup

1 banana

ginger 

cinnamon

more cinnamon

I decided to add some ginger and a ton of cinnamon to the bowl this morning, and it’s amazing what a difference it made. It really spiced things up! This bowl was quick and simple, and got me off to a warm start on this chilly morning. Along with my bowl of bran, I had a cup of coffee using some of the beans I bought at my favorite coffee place in Williamsburg the other weekend. As you can see, I stocked up on the beans!

Beans!Since I get them whole, rather than ground, the beans tend to stay fresh for awhile. That’s good. It will definitely take a while for me to make my way through five pounds. I do love the Coffeehouse! I had skim milk with my coconut coffee, and it was soooo yummy!

Just like yesterday, my breakfast wasn’t quite as hefty as it is some days (no PB today for one thing…), and I was ready for a pink lady with some Bee’s Knees PB around 11:00. I think I kind of like having a morning snack. I might start going a little lighter on my breakfast and factoring in an 11:00 nibble. It’s a thought, anyway. Do you eat a morning snack, or do depend on your breakfast to hold you until lunch?

Look Familiar??Speaking of lunch, I had a leftover turkey burger from the batch I made last night and some chipotle cheddar cheese on an Arnold’s thin. I think Arnold’s thins make awesome buns! I also had some Tribe chipotle hummus and a pile of orange pepper slices. Leftovers are your friend! This lunch was tasty, although my office smelled like a turkey burger for awhile. Who knew they were so fragrant?!

Lunchy LunchI also had a bowl of peach Chobani, some Fiber One for crunch, and another of my yummy little crunchie mini bars from the stash in my desk. I was full and happy!

Crunchie!When I got ready for a snack, I had another rerun from yesterday. I had the other half of my berry Fruit Newton Crisp pack with some more PB. I like this combo, and it is going to be a great way to use up the crisps. As I said, they are yummy, but they have no staying power.

Drool-worthy ReadingI decided to pose my snack on top of the book I’m currently reading. Yes, that is a post-it note from the middle of the pad. I was out of napkins and didn’t have time to go in search of one so I improvised! I finished reading The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao on Monday evening. After reading that, I decided I needed something a bit… lighter. I loved the movie, Chocolat, which featured one of my favorite actresses, Juliette Binoche. It also featured Johnny Depp. Yummy. Anyway, I thought I might like the book when I found it for a dollar at a used book sale not long ago. I started it yesterday, and I’m really enjoying it so far. If you like mouthwatering descriptions of chocolates and other candies, this is the book for you. I might have been drooling a bit while reading it on the metro today. 

My final snack of the day was another rerun:

Afternoon Oatmeal SnackI told you yesterday that I thought the afternoon oatmeal might be turning into a habit. I had another bowl today, and it held me over nicely until dinner. It also satisfied my afternoon sweet tooth while providing a bit of positive nutrition. I think that’s always a good balance to strike! I’m almost out of the pre-flavored pouches so this habit may get broken, whether I like it or not, if I don’t make a trip to the store. We’ll see what happens.

When I got home, I heated up another leftover turkey burger, and made a big salad:

Leftover SaladI topped some of my lettuce from the farmer’s market with a chopped up turkey burger, the rest of my chipotle cheddar, some scraps of gouda that were sitting in the fridge, a bit of Greek yogurt and a little bit of salsa. I also wanted a bit of baked potato so I microbaked one, chopped it into chunks and added half of it to the salad. It was a big potato, so I’ll have the other half tomorrow. This salad was tasty, and had lots of nice protein in it. It really hit the spot. Who says that leftovers have to be boring? I’m all about reinventing them whenever possible!

After that, I had a bowl of LaLoo’s vanilla snowflake topped with some chopped vanilla almonds and a few blackberries. I loved this combo, and I didn’t even miss my usual side of cake. Aren’t blackberries beautiful?

Lovely LaLoo'sAfter all of that, I had a little time for my food to digest before I went to kickboxing. My workout schedule has gotten a bit mixed up lately. For example, I won’t be working from home tomorrow, like I usually do, so tonight was my only opportunity for kickboxing this week. That’s ok. The Wednesday night class is a good one, and I definitely had a great workout! The only bad part is that my Thursday evening won’t be free since I can’t work out during lunch. :-( I like to free up my evenings when possible, but those opportunities are rare during the week. You can usually find me in the gym at night, and that’s why my posts tend to be a bit on the late side. It actually kind of works out since I often get home from the gym around 9:15, and then I need some time to unwind from my workout. That’s the perfect time for me to write my evening post! 

Now, I’m feeling nicely “unwound”, and I need to get ready for bed. I’m probably going to have another little snack before I hit the sack, and then I suspect I’m going to sleep well. Kickboxing really is a good way to burn off excess energy, and that always helps me to sleep better. 

Before I go, I want to remind you again that you have until midnight on Friday evening to enter to win Sweetie Pie’s Prize Pack! I hope you will enter, and tell your friends to enter too. :-) I’m going to announce the winner on Saturday, and I can’t wait!! 

Have a great Thursday! The weekend is getting closer every second. Ciao for now, bloggies!! :-)

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Filed under Bananas, Chocolate, diet, Fitness, Food, Greek Yogurt, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story, Williamsburg

Ambrosiabix?

Have you noticed how most of my posts seem to start with breakfast cookies or bowls of oat bran? Well, hold on to your hat! I had a different kind of day today, and it started with breakfast.

I replenished my stock of Bruce’s sweet potato pancake mix at the Fresh Market on Sunday, and the bag has been tempting me all week. This morning, I decided it was time. I had a couple of pancakes topped with a PB2 and sugar free maple syrup mixture and another little drizzle of syrup. Yum! Peanut butter on pancakes rocks!! On the side, I had a quick scrambled egg beater and the rest of my berries. There is a lot of red on my plate, and I loved every bite!

Blue Plate Breakfast In addition to eating some different things today, I also had a new and different gadget on my counter.

Magic in a BoxAfter reading about all of the green monster smoothies on various blogs, and after hearing people talk about their magic bullets, I checked the magic bullet out on line. An “As Seen On TV” product in my kitchen seemed like an unlikely addition, but it seems that they have taken care of a few of the things I really hate about making smoothies in the blender. 1.) I hate trying to get the last bits out of the bottom of the blender and into my glass. 2.) I hate that I only have one blender container that is often much larger than the smoothie. 3.) I hate how annoying it is to clean all of the blender’s various parts. Since you blend the smoothie in the glass you drink it out of, and since there are a bunch of different sized glasses in the box, it seemed like the perfect thing to me. I got it out of the box today, and I made this:

Green Monster... RAWR!My first green smoothie!! I mixed up 1/2 cup of skim milk, 1/2 cup of unsweetened vanilla almond breeze, 50 grams of spinach, an ice cube and a packet of weight watchers chocolate smoothie mix. I bought a ton of ww smoothie mixes on-line, and I need to use them up and make more room in the pantry for Jay Robb! :-) Could I taste the spinach? Not at all. Amazing! The magic bullet worked like a charm, and the smoothie was really yummy. I’ll definitely be making more of these!! I’m just sad that my box didn’t include a dvd of the infomercial. It provided me with several minutes of quality entertainment when I watched it on-line! Hee hee. 

When lunchtime rolled around, I only had one thing on my mind: melted cheese. Instead of having my usual naan pizza, I decided to see if I could make a good pizza using an Arnold’s sandwich thin, Trader Joe’s bruschetta sauce, and some of my smoked mozzarella.

Lunchy LunchThe cheese was good (duh!), but the sandwich thin got soggy. :-( The naan definitely makes a better crust, although it is also 80 more calories than the sandwich thin. I guess that’s what they call a trade-off. Even so, my hankering for a melty hunk of cheese was satisfied, and I had a bowl of Campbell’s Select Harvest Light Italian Style Vegetable Soup to go with it. When I want something filling, the answer is often soup!

What comes after lunch? Well, lunch dessert, of course! The Easter bunny AKA my friend, Cherie, tucked a very interesting bar of chocolate into the thoughtful Easter basket she gave me when I spent Easter at her home, and I was so excited to try it! 

Coconut Curry ConcoctionI generally think it’s hard to go wrong with Theo’s chocolate products, and I rarely meet a coconut product that I don’t like.  I LOVE coconut, and I love curry, but how would I like them together… and in chocolate…? I liked them. I liked them a lot. In fact, I’d say this was a pretty amazing bar! The bar has nice coconut bits throughout, and you can definitely taste the curry. Add chocolate to that combo, and wow. Thanks Easter bunny!! There are also some bits and pieces of vanilla wafer on the plate along with a little dark chocolate dreams PB. This was a tasty little plate for sure!

After I cleaned out the rest of the crumbs from the vanilla wafer jar, I needed to refill it. Sweetie Pie, you have a vanilla wafer jar? Well, sort of.

Papaw's Vanilla Wafer JarThis jar used to live in the kitchen at my grandparents’ house, and it has held many tasty things during its life. Sometimes it had homemade cookies in it, but often it was full of humble vanilla wafers. My papaw loved them, and he’d nibble on them when he just needed a bite of something sweet. I just think the jar looks “right” with vanilla wafers in it, and I’m happy to have it sitting on my cabinet at the ready if my sweet tooth starts to holler!

Here’s where my snacks take a turn that I thought was kind of funny. My fruit bowl has been emptied out this week, and I’m hoping to fill it up with things from Saturday’s farmer’s market. In the meantime, I decided to see what kind of fruit was in the pantry. I had a can of mandarin oranges in light syrup, and I decided to drain off the sticky syrup and mix the oranges into a bowl of Blue Ridge Dairy Greek yogurt.

Step OneMy plan was to mix up a big bowl, but not to eat it all at once. In fact, I planned to just have some on a Weetabix, which I did.

Ambrosiabix?While I was eating the Weetabix, I realized that this combination really reminded me of tasty ambrosia. Ambrosiabix?  The only thing missing was coconut. So…

Step TwoI had a little bowl about an hour later with some coconut on top. I was loving this combo!! When I got hungry again, the thought process went something like this:

“What do I want?”

“Hmm… there is about half a bowl of that ambrosia stuff left in the fridge.”

“But, you’ve already had that twice. Don’t you want something different?”

“If I add a couple of vanilla wafers, then it will be different.”

“Good point! You are so right! Let’s do it!”

Step ThreeYes, I do sometimes have conversations like that with myself. That’s normal, right? So, I ate the rest and ended with this:

Operation Empty The Bowl is CompleteI would really recommend this combination if you are looking for something light, bright and lovely. It was also a great way to make use of a pantry item. I love doing that! I have one more can of oranges that has been in my desk drawer at work for awhile now, and it will be on its way back home with me tomorrow so that I can make some more of my little ambrosia concoction! Maybe I won’t kid myself next time, and I’ll just sit down with the big bowl and a spoon. 

What’s your favorite thing to add to Greek yogurt? Apparently, mine is coconut and oranges. :-)

There was nothing unusual about dinner. It was a rerun, but a delicious one! I had more of last night’s black bean tacos.

Din DinIf you happen to be on Weight Watchers and you’ve never tried Pepito’s corn tortillas, you might want to check them out. Two of them are only one point, and they are really good. My store keeps them in the refrigerator case. You can do so many things with them, and I almost always have some in the fridge.

I followed up my dinner with a piece of chocolate banana snack cake and some Strawberry Darling LaLoo’s goats milk ice cream. Yep, I had that for dessert last night too. It was awesome yesterday, it was awesome tonight, and I’m planning on finishing off the ice cream with another piece of cake tomorrow night. I’m sure it will be… awesome! I do love my cake and ice cream!! :-)

Dessert!After dessert, I went to the gym to work out with my trainer and then to do some cardio. Tonight’s workout burned around 620 calories according to the heart rate monitor. We did some core exercises that we haven’t done in awhile, and I could really tell that my body had gotten out of the habit of doing them. I know that’s good, but it wasn’t the most pleasant thing. Ouch! I’ll be feeling it tomorrow for sure! After my workout, I tried my last new thing for the day. I had a cinnamon roll Larabar. This was one of those things that I always left on the shelf when I was counting points. I still think 200 calories is a little bit hefty for a bar, but I enjoyed it so I think it was well worth the “expense.”

LarabarOne more day of work to go and only a couple of more posts until I give you the scoop on my 100th post giveaway. Tomorrow, I’m planning to tell you how the scale has treated me with my switch from counting points to counting calories. I’m looking forward to all of it!

Now, as usual, I’m off to bed. Ciao for now, and I hope you have the best Friday ever!!

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Filed under Beans, Cake, Chocolate, diet, Fitness, Food, Greek Yogurt, Washington, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story

Chocolate Banana Snack Cake and A Lovely Day of Eats

Hi! Sorry to be posting so late, but I just got home. If you are reading this on Friday morning: TGIF! If you are up late on Thursday, happy almost TGIF! I had a couple of birthday gatherings to attend this evening, so I’m up a little past my bedtime. Even so, I wanted to give you the scoop on my grub for the day as well as a new and tasty recipe that I made. First things first, here’s a re-run for you:

"Tropical Pineapple Right Side Up Breakfast Cookie"I have enough pineapple for one more “Tropical Pineapple Right Side Up Breakfast Cookie.” I’ll be having it a few hours from now, and I’m looking forward to it already. I’m a little bit hungry, but hopefully I will make it until then! I had this morning’s cookie along with a cup of blueberry tea mixed with skim milk and unsweetened vanilla almond breeze. I’m loving this breakfast SO much! 

Today was a work from home day, and I usually go to noontime kickboxing when I’m working at home. Since I’ve been a bit more sore than usual this week, I decided to just do a more laid back cardio workout in the gym this evening. I still scorched about 600 calories, but I think my muscles were probably glad not to be subjected to a kickboxing workout today. I usually have a pre-kickboxing snack, and I decided to uphold the tradition– despite the lack of actual kickboxing. :-) I snacked on a Sunshiny Blueberry Muffin from the freezer. Remember those? I did, once I found a couple in the freezer. It was still perfect once I gave it a very quick zap in the micro. I guess I can add “freezes well” to their list of attributes. 

Sunshiny Blueberry MuffinI love these little muffins, and can’t wait until I have some bona fide Virginia berries from the farmer’s market to use in them. YUM! Eventually, lunchtime rolled around. My lunch looks very similar to last night’s dinner with two exceptions: skewer #1 and skewer #2.

I wanted to reheat my fries, and I was hoping to make them crispy. What’s a girl with no toaster oven to do? Well, make French fry kabobs in the pop up toaster! What else?!  Seriously!

Toaster Fries

 

Lunchy LunchI’m glad I thought of this, although I was a bit skeptical of the idea at first. I envisioned having potato bits trapped in my toaster forever or pulling flaming skewers from the toaster with my tongs in a blaze of glory, but it worked just fine. My fries crisped up, and I didn’t set anything on fire. Perfect! Plus, I got to eat my fries on a stick. :-) There should be more foods on sticks! The leftover burger from last night was great along with some leftover steamed veggies and Country Bob’s sauce. I do love my leftovers! 

Milk and CookiesFor dessert number one, I had a Brent & Sam’s Soft and Chewy Oatmeal Raisin Cookie with some almond breeze on the side. I like to buy these cookies from time to time because they come individually wrapped. That’s perfect for me since it could take me months to eat a package of cookies! After that, I was still craving a little something.

PB WafersI had two vanilla wafers with a smear of Mighty Maple PB. I just had three more, although you won’t see any photos of my late night snack. Sorry. :-( Dessert number two was followed up sometime later by my afternoon snacks. I had a bowl of Greek yogurt from the Blue Ridge Dairy folks topped with some Bees ‘n Blossoms pomegranate honey jelly and some Zoe’s cinnamon raisin granola. I love how the jelly looks like a jewel sitting on top. This bowl was yummy and satisfying. I should mention that the bowl itself is one of my favorites. It’s jadeite, and it spent years holding bacon grease in my grandmother’s kitchen. It’s contents have changed somewhat, but the beautiful color is just the same. 

Awesome in a bowlI also had a Pink Lady apple with some cashew butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon before I went to the gym. The apple was so crisp, and that’s just the way I like them. I hate mealy apples! Red delicious apples are NOT delicious, in my opinion.

One Nutty LadyBefore I hopped into the shower after my time in the gym, I mixed up a quick snack cake recipe that I found on the Cooking Light website. I was, once again, trying to use up some of the frozen bananas in my freezer jungle, and this cake looked too easy and good to pass up. I’ll give you the link if you want to check it out: LINK. I, of course, tweaked my version based on what I had on hand, and my desire to knock the calories back a tiny bit. Here were my changes to the recipe I linked to above:

Chocolate Banana Snack Cake

  • I used 3/4 cup of sugar instead of 1 cup. I thought it was sweet enough, and the chocolate really rocked!
  • I used 3/4 cup of all purpose flour and 1/4 cup of teff flour.
  • I only had a little cup of Mott’s unsweetened pomegranate plus applesauce, and that worked just fine for the applesauce requirement.
  • I used instant espresso powder since that’s the only “instant coffee” in my cupboard.
  • I did not bake it on parchment paper, but rather in a 9×9 glass baking dish coated in cooking spray.
  • I cut mine into 12 instead of 16 because… I like bigger pieces. :-)

I’m sure that it would be fabulous if you just followed the recipe, but I thought I’d mention my little changes just in case you were curious. I can also think of about a zillion add ins that would be amazing! Peanut butter chips are at the top of that list! I do love Cooking Light, and I like that they provide the nutritional information for all of their recipes. When you start tweaking, you have to do some recalculating on your own, but it does provide you with a nice general idea, which I find to be very helpful.

Mmm.... Cake...This cake is similar to a cakey brownie. I like that the edges crisped up. I put mine in a bowl so that I could add…

The Perfect Pair… a bit of ice cream on the side, of course! Instead of having my fake cake this evening, I had the real deal. It was goooood! I have to recommend this recipe! I wrapped some pieces up and put them into the freezer. If I made them to clean out the freezer, but then put them back in, is this progress? Methinks the answer is yes. I’d rather find a bag of this chocolate banana cake in the freezer than a bag of gooey bananas any day. 

Oh gosh! I just remembered that I totally forgot to tell you about dinner. I was too excited about dessert! No surprise there, right? My dinner was quick since I had parties to attend. I heated up a container of Boca chili (one more thing out of the freezer), with a corn vita top (another thing out of the frozen jungle) and a piece of light string cheese. Quick and easy– which was perfect since I was in a bit of a hurry. I really did eat this before I had my cake and ice cream. Really. I did. :-)

Quick Din DinNow, I need to mix up my breakfast cookie, finish putting clean sheets on my bed, and then put myself to bed! Is it just me, or are clean sheets THE BEST?!

If you had to choose between “milk and cookies” or “cake and ice cream,” which would you pick? I’d have a hard time, but I think I’d probably have to go with cake and ice cream. Especially if the cake had frosting on it. Mmm… frosting!

Before I go:

Karen at To Be The Whole Package is hosting an Honest Foods giveaway that I would love to win, but you should enter it too. :-)

Kelly at Happy Texans is having an awesome bagel giveaway, but you only have until tomorrow to enter so hurry!

There is a Barney Butter giveaway going on at Meloncauliflower’s site. Check out her recent Barney Butter fiasco. This post cracked me up. If you travel and are a foodie, you can likely relate!

Ciao for now, bloggies!

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Filed under Baking, Cake, Chocolate, Cookies, cooking, Cooking Light, diet, Fitness, Food, Pineapple, Recipes, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story

My Saturday Cookie Experiment

 

Chocolate Chip Oat Bran Cookies

Happy weekend! I’m so excited that the weather is warm. I have the door to my balcony open as I’m typing, and it is so nice to air things out a bit. I started my day off with a bonus class with my trainer that involved 30 minutes of cardio and core intervals. I was pretty pooped after the class, but it was too nice not to get outside so I followed it up with a 30 minute run. I crushed over 700 calories today, got some fresh air and had a good time doing it!!

To celebrate my great workout and replenish a few of those tiny little calories, I decided to make a batch of cookies. I’ve been sort of obsessed with oat bran lately, and, of course, I wanted to see if I could incorporate it into a cookie. There was a recipe for an oat bran raisin cookie on the side of my oat bran box, but I wanted chocolate chips! I also wanted about one fourth of the number of cookies that the recipe would make, as usual, so I pared the recipe down and made a few other changes based on my goal of making a dozen one point cookies. It may seem weird to start with a points goal and work backwards when creating a recipe, but it works pretty well for me most of the time. 

The cookies that I made are good. I will say that they are pretty small, and have a definite oat bran nuttiness to them. Having said that, I enjoyed the two that I ate. I got that nice baked goods experience but with a little more fiber and a little less fat. Plus, did I mention… there was chocolate! I liked these enough to go ahead and post the recipe ( I wouldn’t want to steer you wrong…), but stay tuned! I’m going to be trying some variations on this theme. I’ll keep you updated. For now, this is my recipe:

Chocolate Cutie

Bittersweet Chocolate Oat Bran Cookies

Ingredients:

2 Tbsp. butter

3 1/2 Tbsp. brown sugar, packed

1 Tbsp. egg beaters

2 Tbsp. skim milk

1/8 tsp. vanilla extract

1/2 cup whole wheat flour

60 grams of oat bran (this is about 1/3 cup plus 2 1/2 Tbsp.)

1 tsp. baking powder

1 pinch of salt

25 grams of Ghirardelli 60% cacao bittersweet chocolate chips (about 27 chips)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cream the butter and brown sugar in the mixer at medium speed. Add the egg beaters, milk and vanilla extract and beat until well combined. 

Combine the dry ingredients (flour, oat bran, baking powder and salt) in a small bowl. Add the dry ingredients to the butter mixture and mix well. The dough will be stiff and somewhat dry. 

Incorporate the chocolate chips. Divide the dough into 12 portions and place on a baking sheet. 

Bake for five minutes. Remove from the oven, and press the tops of each cookie down with the back of a fork. This will flatten the cookies while spreading the chocolate around on top. Return the cookies to the oven and bake for an additional five minutes. Cool the finished cookies on a wire rack.

This makes 12 unofficial 1 point cookies.

The dough was definitely more stiff and dry than most cookie batters I’ve made, but it was sticky enough.

BatterThe balls of dough looked like this on the way into the oven:

Ready for the Oven The finished product:

Done!

As I mentioned, this was a bit of an experiment. I wasn’t planning to flatten the cookies out halfway through, but they weren’t spreading out much so I decided to go for it. I didn’t realize that the added bonus would be the way the chocolate spread around on the top. This seems perfect to me since there aren’t a ton of chocolate chips in these cookies. This made a little bit of chocolate go a longer way, and I think the cookies look prettier with their chocolatey tops. 

Rack 'em up!

I’m having a couple of friends over for lunch tomorrow, and I’m happy that they are the kind of friends who won’t turn up their noses at my healthy cookies! After that, I have a bowling birthday party to attend followed by another workout with my trainer. Tomorrow has potential to be a very busy day. Today has been pretty lazy, aside from my workout, so that seems like a pretty good balance. I like to have some time to myself on the weekends, but, of course, I like to have some time with my friends too!

I’m planning to make a yummy vegetarian friendly soup for my friends, and I’ll tell you all about it tomorrow. I’m concocting the recipe in my head right this second. Have a great Saturday night, and a great Sunday too. :-)

Oh, and the lovely Abbie is having an amazing giveaway to celebrate her new site at Foods That Fit. Definitely check it out!! This is an awesome giveaway, and I always love to read what Abbie has to say.

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Filed under Baking, Cookies, diet, Fitness, Food, Recipes, Uncategorized, Weight Loss, Weight Loss Success Story, Weight Watchers