Sunday, February 3, 2013

Key Lime Pie Protein Smoothie

I wish I could take the credit for this one, but I found this recipe in either Fitness Rx or Oxygen and decided to try it out. It's creamy, smooth, and refreshing - in other words a little sip of heaven.

Here's what you need:

• 1 level scoop of vanilla cream elite whey protein powder (30g protein)
• 56g avocado (about half a small avocado)*
• 1 cup unsweetened coconut almond milk
• 2T concentrated lime juice or juice of 1 lime
• Splenda or Stevia in the Raw, optional**

Blend and enjoy!

*WEIGH your avocado! They are calorie bombs so you want to make sure you are getting what want and nothing more. Also, I recommend dicing the remaining avocado (plus a few more), sprinkling with lime juice, then flash freezing the pieces on a piece of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. After frozen (about 4-6 hours) store in a Ziplock in the freezer.

**I didn't use it and it was delicious.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Blond Bomb Protein Shake

If any of you have noticed, I have a teeny-tiny-little-bitty-sorta-big-huge fixation on measurements. I have the measurements of the most popular pin-ups and bombshells of the the late-40's to mid-60's written down somewhere. Hell, I know the exact measurements of Betty Grable's legs. (Did you know that her legs were deemed perfectly proportionate and were used to design pantyhose? At least that's what I hear on the Interwebs.)

Anyway, my biggest crush is the legendary Marilyn Monroe - I absolutely adore her. I was reading about her and found out that she had a quite peculiar diet. I'm not a fan of raw carrots and liver for dinner, but what she had religiously for breakfast peaked my interest: warm milk with two whole eggs whisked into it.

Now, stop! No lurching or dry-heaving allowed. Although the whole warm milk thing wouldn't work for me, the idea of sexy Marilyn drinking eggs like Rocky was sort of awesome. I decided to make a few modifications and try it myself. What was born has now become my go-to after weight training shake. If you like eggnog, this shake is for you. Here's what you will need:

• a Blender Bottle*
• 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
• 1 cup egg whites**
• 1 level scoop of vanilla cream elite whey protein powder (30g protein
• 1/8 -1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
• 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg

*These are available at Walmart for about $6-8. If you are serious about weight lifting or integrating protein shakes into your diet, this is a must. This cannot be used to blend peanut butter, oatmeal or frozen fruit, though. You still need a blender for that.

** Quit gagging! Surprisingly that weird slippery, gelatinous substance you are envisioning sliding down your throat is totally wrong! It is very watery, with almost not semblance of egg white at all. Oh, and if you are concerned about salmonella, many brands are pasteurized and even if they aren't there is a greater chance of you contracting salmonella from under-cooked chicken or picking up staph from a hospital than getting sick from egg whites. True story.

Add ingredients in the order listed. Twist top on tightly, hold the pour spout cover down tightly with two fingers and shake. Decant into a glass or travel mug and enjoy!

Friday, January 18, 2013

Amelia Pond Protein Smoothie

A few of my MFPeeps have asked about my protein shake recipes. As I mentioned in an earlier post, MFP does not currently support sharing/viewing recipes with friends.

Until then, here is the **aptly named, deliciously sweet, peaches-and-cream ginger treat that keeps me going almost every morning.

Here's What You'll Need:

• 3/4 cup (140 g) of frozen peaches, unsweetened - I recommend a digital scale because I measure in oz. and grams for accuracy
• 1 level scoop of vanilla cream elite whey protein powder (30g protein)
• 1-2 inches of fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
• 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk

Add ingredients in order listed to your blender. Pulse for 30-60 seconds until creamy and smooth. Mangia!

**If you don't know who Amelia (Amy) Pond is, you are obviously not a Whovian and that means you are mentally deranged and should stay away from sharp objects and machinery.**

Monday, January 7, 2013

Salmon & Spinach Puff Pastry

I had a few rogue pieces of salmon in the freezer. Since we need four for our family, I was struggling to work them into this week's dinner menu until I recalled a super-delicious creation I made about 6 years BC (before calorie-control). It's crunchy, savory, and full of two of my favorite foods: salmon and spinach. Its simple flavors balance well and the flakey crust is divine (especially for carb-watchers like me). It easily feeds two adults and two kids, but tonight my husband and I ate the whole thing because our kids decided grilled cheese sounded better. To tell you the truth, I didn't fight them at all. I was fine with not sharing. ;-)

Here's What You Will Need:

Salmon & Spinach Puffed Pastry

• 1 puffed pastry sheet, thawed and rolled out to about 25-30% larger. *Use parchment paper
• 1/2 a package of frozen spinach, thawed, squeezed, wrung out, and squeezed again until it no longer gives up moisture
• 2- 5 to 6 ounce Atlantic salmon fillets, thawed and patted dry
• 1/8 cup basil pesto
• 1/2-1 tsp. lemon-pepper seasonings

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Roll out puffed pastry sheet on parchment paper. Evenly disperse the spinach; top with basil pesto. Place salmon fillets on top of spinach and pesto. Sprinkle fillets wit lemon-pepper. Fold over pastry flaps and roll up ends to seal (Somehow I missed this step in picture). Gently transfer the parchment paper and pastry onto baking sheet. Bake for 30-35 minutes until the dough puffs and is golden and flakey.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Melba WEIGHING Less..

It has been a crazy-ridiculous long time since I made a blog post. I've lost about one-hundred pounds (no big deal lol) using MyFitnessPal and have totally revamped the way I cook.

Some of my Pals have requested recipes (one flaw of the app is that you cannot view/share recipes with friends) so I figured what better way to share recipes than on my long-neglected blog.

I've been working on my upping my protein intake and controlling carbs. So far it's been fairly easy.. but boring. I've grown listless with tuna (gasp!) and protein shakes aren't really something warm and comforting you can sit down around a table and share with the family.

I made up this recipe after being inspired by the Southwestern Style Egg Beaters that called to me from Wegmans cooler. This recipe is versatile enough to feed two VERY hungry adults or a family of four with a complementing side. Mangia!

Southwestern Soufflé

• 12 ounces cooked 99% fat-free ground turkey
• 15 ounces Southwestern Style Egg Beaters
• 2 cups fresh baby spinach
• 1 1/2 cups fat-free shredded cheddar
• 3/4 cup *salsa (optional)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Liberally apply cooking spray to a non-stick skillet. This is important: the lack of fat in the turkey makes it stick easily - even on non-stick surfaces. Cook ground turkey over medium-high heat until done; drain excess fat/water.

Lightly coat a 2 quart rectangular Pyrex dish with cooking spray. Pour in eggs. Add ground turkey. Top with baby spinach and shredded cheese. Add *salsa a tablespoon at a time. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until eggs are no longer runny and any excess moisture from the spinach and/or salsa has cooked away. Enjoy!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Cake Balls

Happy 70th Birthday, Gramma Shirley!

Wow, can you tell it's summer?  I have been meaning to maintain the blog, but the pool and reading in the sun have been more appealing lately.

So my husband's birthday was last Saturday so I made a cake for the family on Sunday to celebrate.  It wasn't exactly how I hoped it would be because I couldn't find one ingredient at Wegman's so I sort of changed things up and bit.  I gotta tell ya though, I am pretty sure this version was better received than the original recipe would have been.  Remind me and I will put up both recipes and you can see which one your family likes better.

ANYWAY, the cake turned out OK considering I sort of flipped one of the 8" round cakes onto the cake plate the wrong way and failed to notice until I had already frosted the top.  I said eff it and plopped the other cake on top of it and then flipped the entire cake over so it was the way I wanted it. I would never recommend doing this because it is extremely risky.  Depending on the cake and the tenderness of the crumb, it could wind up a heap of frosting and cake crumbles.  IF that does happen - or if you feel like getting messy and making something your kids can help with - there is hope!

Cake balls!  It's a simple but very attractive way to present a cake.  I decided to make my gramma a bunch of cake balls today for her birthday (yesterday) because she and my Pa would never be able to finish and entire cake by themselves (especially since Pa is diabetic) before it got dry and gross.  Luckily these can be refrigerated or frozen (so I have been told) as long as they are kept in an air-tight container for a week in the fridge or several weeks in the freezer.

Here's What You Will Need:

- Cake mix*
- Eggs
- Oil
- Water
- Frosting*
- Mini cupcake papers
- Wilton's melts (of any color)*
- Parchment paper
- Plastic wrap
- Toothpicks

*Pick flavors and colors that will compliment each other.  For my gramma's birthday I chose red velvet cake, cream cheese frosting, milk chocolate Wilton melts, and white chocolate Wilton melts (as the accent color).

1.  Mix and bake the cake as directed on box.
2.  Flip the cake out onto parchment paper covered cookie sheet.
3.  Let cool at room temperature for about 10 minutes; Using a spatula or a spoon gently break the cake apart, allowing the steam to escape.
4.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-3 hours until it is completely cool.
5.  Carefully dump the cake into a large mixing bowl.  With a rubber spatula, scrape the entire contents of a tub of frosting into the cake crumbs.  Mix by hand until cake and frosting is completely blended.
6.  Return cake mixture to the refrigerator for another hour.
7.  Using a teaspoon, scoop (I hate that word) out a walnut-sized amount of mixture and roll between your hands until you've formed a ball.  Place on a parchment paper covered cookie sheet.  When all the mixture has been balled (between 24-30 balls), cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cool and firm.  The firmer they are, the better. As they come to room temperature, they are going to be increasingly more difficult to work with.  If you don't want cake crumbs in your coating, work in small batches - keep the sheet in the fridge/freezer and take a few out at a time.

Red Velvet cake balls look like meatballs, don't they?
*You can alternately use the freezer for any of the cooling steps, but you run the risk of losing moisture or picking up unsavory freezer smells (frozen peppers or onion flavors can and will seep into a cake cooling in the freezer).

8.  Melt Wilton melts according to instructions.  I usually microwave a small amount and work in small batches.  This is a little more time consuming, but it is well worth it.

I used the empty, clean frosting to melt the coating.  It worked better than the shallower containers.

Make sure you have everything prepped before you begin.  

9. Place one cake ball at a time into the melted coating.  GENTLY turn once to ensure complete coverage. Using a small slotted spoon and a toothpick, GENTLY lift the ball with the spoon, tap off excess coating, and skewer the ball with the toothpick.  Place the ball on the parchment paper LEAVING THE TOOTHPICK INSIDE.

 *Do not rely on the toothpick to hold the weight of the cake ball, because the ball can and will crumble.  GENTLY slide the ball off of the spoon using the toothpick as leverage.  You don't want to touch the melted chocolate because it won't look as nice.

10.  Let the balls cool completely.  Decorate with accent color, if desired.  I recommend purchasing the Wilton squeeze bottles for this.  They provide a much more consistent stream and make even application easier.

11.  After the coating is completely hardened, slide off of the toothpick and place in mini cupcake papers.

I was able to fit about 18 of them in a Gladware Take and Bake.

They look great, right?!  Sorry I didn't take pictures of the process, but it takes a great deal of concentration and time is of the essence!

 This one and two others didn't make the aesthetic cut, so the kids and I did a taste test.  Yum!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Streusel-topped Banana Muffins

Rarely is there a recipe that is so simple that a 3 3/4 year old can do [most of] it, but this recipe is. 
I went on a shopping spree at Jenkins Farm Market last week and got so much produce that our bananas browned  before they were all eaten.  In this house, bananas have a very short shelf life.  We won't eat them green and we won't eat them once they start to get little brown speckles on the skin; however, everyone loves banana muffins.  

If you're the "waste not, want not" type, this recipe is just for you.  Here is what you'll need:


  • 3/4 cups all-purpose flour*
  • 3/4 cups whole-wheat flour* 
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil**
  • 2 tablespoons white sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Combine dry ingredients.  *You can use all-purpose flour, whole-wheat, or half-and-half.  I prefer half-and-half because it gives the muffins more substance without being too crumby.  

Peel bananas

Try not to be grossed out by the brown mushy spots.

In a separate bowl, add bananas

Mash bananas.

My assistant enjoyed this part immensely.

Add the egg.

Pour in the vegetable oil.  **Melted butter can be substituted, but we prefer vegetable oil.

Add the brown sugar.

This is what it should look like.

Mix until thoroughly blended.  There will still be small chunks of banana - that's OK!

Pour banana mixture into dry ingredients.

Use a rubber spatula to make sure you get all of it.

Gently stir until blended.  Don't over-mix or they will be tough.

Place paper liners in muffin pan.

Carefully scoop about 1/4 cup of batter in each well.

Use any remaining batter to even out wells.

Pulse butter, flour, sugar and cinnamon in food processor.  Use all-purpose flour for this part.  Don't over-process.  The end result should look like this.

Gently spoon 1 teaspoon of streusel topping on each muffin cup.


Dust off any streusel topping that may have fallen onto the pan.  It will scorch and stick to the pan.

Set the timer for 17 minutes.

Place in the oven and bake for 16-20 minutes.  Every oven is different, so check them often and remove the immediately after center sets and a toothpick or cake tester comes out clean.