Saturday, October 04, 2008

Fall Weather Makes Me Want to Cook _______!

I hope you are all having a great weekend! The weather here has been so pretty...its finally starting to feel like fall! There are so many things I love about fall weather...good hair days (i.e. less humidity), enjoyable night football games, and warm comfort foods! I had chili last night for dinner and I made artichoke soup tonight. I've been cooking with butternut squash and sweet potatoes. I have pomegranates, persimmons, and pears in my kitchen right now. I also baked a fall ahead to find out what it was.

I passed my Adult Weight Management I'm officially certified. I didn't learn anything "ground breaking" new magic weight loss secrets to share! I did learn a lot of new counseling techniques and I will use them in the future. I have a new understanding of how and when bariatric surgery, weight loss medications, and meal replacements (bars and shakes) can be used in effort to lose weight. I also realized how FABULOUS San Francisco is and that I can't wait to go back!

The following recipes are going to help you with 3 suggestions I have:

1. Eat more veggies! They are low in calories and high in nutrients/fiber.

I am going to attempt to inspire you to eat more veggies...steamed broccoli and green beans can get old really fast. If you can find a way to make vegetables more appealing you will likely eat more of them and more often. At lunch and dinner, a good idea is to fill ½ of your plate with vegetables...this will displace other more calorie dense things (starches and protein) and help you consume fewer calories.

Here and here are some more veggie ideas.

2. Have a starch free lunch on some days.

Starch...meaning bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, etc. Salads at lunch are a good tip. If you have a starch free lunch (like a salad), you will have left-over starches when you get to dinner (that is if you count starches). And then you can enjoy whole wheat pasta, brown rice, quinoa, or a whole wheat dinner roll with the rest of your family. Another good "starch-free" meal is an omelet or frittata made with sautéed veggies, egg whites, and reduced-fat cheese (I love having omelets at non-breakfast meals).

The salad recipe for the week was emailed to me by a LifeTime Fitness TWL participant and looks really good. Its a spinach salad...I'm sure you don't need me to tell you how good spinach is for you, but if you want to read more about it and other greens, read this.

3. Have dairy (yogurt, cottage cheese, milk, or yogurt, soy milk, etc.) and fruit for snacks.

The recipe for "Very Berry Salad" looks really good. I make something similar to this every week; I make it ahead of time on the weekend and eat it all week. The fruit provides you with carbohydrates for energy and the dairy adds protein to keep you satisfied for longer!

Spinach Salad with Warm Maple Dressing -
  • Per serving - 164 calories, 12 g fat (2 g saturated), 12 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 4 g protein (exchanges: 1 ½ fat, 2 vegetable)
  • Notes - I think this would be good with chopped red bell pepper and diced apple or pear…and add some lean protein to complete the meal (chicken, tuna, beans)

Very Berry Salad -

  • Per Serving - 83 calories, 0 g fat (0 g saturated), 20 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 2 g protein (exchanges: 1 ½ fruit)
  • Notes - Eat this as is, or for a satisfying snack, add some protein with low-fat yogurt, cottage cheese, or ricotta cheese. This would be good with other types of fruit too…use what is in season (obviously berries aren't really in season right now, so maybe apples, pears, grapes, and pomegranate) and save money!

Asian Cucumber Salad -

  • Per Serving - 52 calories, 2.4 g fat (0.3 g saturated), 5.8 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 1.3 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 1 vegetable)
  • Notes - Keep the Asian theme, and serve with Soy Glazed Salmon (or tuna)

Baby Spinach with Pine Nuts -

  • Per Serving - 51 calories, 3.5 g fat (0.5 g saturated), 3.7 g carbohydrate, 2 g fiber, 2.6 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 1 vegetable)
  • Notes - Serve with baked chicken or pork tenderloin

Roasted Broccoli and Cauliflower -

  • Per Serving - 67 calories, 4.2 g fat (0.8 g saturated), 6 g carbohydrate, 2.4 g fiber, 3 g protein (exchanges: 1 fat, 1 vegetable)
  • Notes - I've made this before and added a little whole grain mustard and lemon juice too...I was inspired by this recipe (but without all of the butter!)

Barley with Shiitakes and Spinach -

  • Per Serving - 172 calories, 3.3 g fat (0.9 g saturated), 26.7 g carbohydrate, 6.7 g fiber, 8.6 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, ½ protein, 1 starch, 2 vegetable)
  • Notes - Barley is a whole grain...if you can't find quick cooking barley, just buy what you can find and cook it a little longer (pearl barley is easier to find and is usually on the rice isle or the cereal isle near the oats)

Broccoli With Dijon Vinaigrette -

  • Per Serving - 52 calories, 1.7 g fat (0.2 g saturated), 7.6 g carbohydrate, 4.1 g fiber, 4 g protein (exchanges: fat, 1 vegetable)

Brussels Sprouts with Pecans -

  • Per Serving - 82 calories, 3 g fat (0.8 g saturated), 12.6 g carbohydrate, 3.9 g fiber, 3.6 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 2 vegetable)
  • Notes - I love Brussels sprouts and get so excited when they are in season! If you've never had a shredded Brussels sprout dish, you should try this

Carrot Coins with Maple-Balsamic Browned Butter -

  • Per Serving - 86 calories, 3.1 g fat (1.8 g saturated), 14.5 g carbohydrate, 3.4 g fiber, 1.1 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 2 vegetable)
  • Notes - According to Cooking Light, this recipe tastes best when you start with whole carrots...the peeling and slicing should take you less than five minutes

Green Beans and Pan-Roasted Red Onions -

  • Per Serving - 66 calories, 2 g fat (0.4 g saturated), 10.8 g carbohydrate, 2.4 g fiber, 2.2 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 1 ½ vegetable)
  • Notes - The actual recipe says the serving size is 1/2 cup, but I think you should have at least 1 I doubled the nutrition info above

Quick Eggplant and Tomato Sauté -

  • Per Serving - 46 calories, 2.4 g fat (0.3 g saturated), 5.5 g carbohydrate, 2.1 g fiber, 1 g protein (exchanges: ½ fat, 1 vegetable)
  • Notes - This would be good over whole wheat pasta!


I love the fall because I love cooking with pumpkin. This weekend I made pumpkin walnut muffins (with whole wheat pastry flour) and they are delicious! This isn't the recipe I used, but Ellie's looks just as good! If you make them, freeze most of them (after they are baked) so you don't eat them all at once! You could omit the pumpkin seed topping or substitute walnuts or pecans. Make sure you buy canned pumpkin and not pumpkin pie filling. Perfect for breakfast with a glass of milk!

Per serving - 205 calories, 7 g fat (1 g saturated), 32 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 5 g protein (exchanges: 2 starches, 1 fat)

1 comment:

  1. Blair, congrats on your certification! I miss you here at Life Time! I continue to give out your blog address at the classes take care