National Spinach Day?

I quit cold turkey. It’s been 4 days.  Four. Cuatro. Quatre.  It’s been four days without a single chocolate chip.  It may not seem like a lot to you, but to me?  Oh, stop with your eye roll, you judgmental bastard!  I realize there are bigger real world problems out there. But, seriously, I’m ready to punch someone in the throat.  Like the ol’ man perhaps? He had the nerve to buy Chips Ahoy! cookies, without the decency to hide them from me. Asshole.  Testing my will power is not love.  It’s torture. I have plenty of internal struggles with “eat or not to eat”. Don’t make it worse by teasing me with the goods! When it comes to chocolate chips or chocolate chip cookies, I have ZERO control. Cake? Pie? Ice cream? Chips?  I can say no to it all.  Having chocolate chips or any of their accomplices is like stocking up the liquor cabinet with alcoholic in the house.  I. Will. Not. Break. Down.

Enough of my whining.  Rumor has it that tomorrow is National Spinach Day.  I’m not entirely sure why we need a National Day for Spinach, but we do.  Luckily for spinach, it’s delicious.  And Popeye seems to like it, so I guess it’s worthy.  Since I’m Striving for 5 and all that fun stuff, (Go Team Go!) Campbell’s has a fantastical spinach and mushroom frittata that I made a while ago.  Easy, and the kids like it. Well, 2 of them did. I will give you a penny and a half if you can guess which one didn’t.  Heaven forbid they saw the microscopic mushrooms in it. This would make a great Easter brunch recipe! Just don’t tell the kids there are mushrooms. Or Spinach. Nevermind.  Serve it at the adult table.  Or call it just a Frittata.  It’s all in how you spin it!

Spinach and Mushroom Frittata 

  • 10 Eggs
  • 1 Can cream of mushroom soup (used the 10¾ oz size of 98% fat free)
  • 1-10 oz pkg Frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well drained
  • 1.5 C Shredded Swiss (honestly I probably used closer to 2 C, since ya know, I used almost fat free soup, lol my logic kills me)
  • 1/2 tsp Ground black pepper
  1. Heat oven to 375°F.  Spray a 12x8x2 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl with a whisk, beat the eggs.  Stir in the soup, spinach and 1 cup (or so) of the cheese and black pepper.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared dish.
  4. Bake for 35 minutes or until the eggs are set in the center.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.  Let stand for about 5 minutes until the cheese melts.
  5. If you make this the day before, refrigerate until you are ready to use.  Let it sit out for 30 minutes to get to room temperature.  Then reheat in a 350°F oven for about 20 minutes.

spinach frittata

I’m changing the name to Shrimp Piccata!

It is almost Friday.  It. Is. Almost. Friday. I’m gonna slap a big WOOOO HOOO on that. Truly, it’s been a very long week.  On the bright side, the  sun was out today; cold, but the sun was out!  It’s almost like you can actually almost see Spring around the corner.  Then the weather comes on and the pretty boy in the suit says “Snow next week”.  And you want to punch his pretty face. Ok, ok, so it is upstate New York, and fine, it is only mid-March.  Yes, I know snow is still to be expected until April. UGH, fine!  I will leave his pretty face alone 😉

I think I mentioned a few posts back that I’m the team leader for the Eat Well, Live Well challenge.  That has really thrown me into the “let’s be super healthy until I get discouraged” mood.  I’m back on MyFitness Pal, logging everything I eat.  I purchased a Fitbit. I’m down to a handful or two of chocolate chips a day. And yes, I’m logging those too. I’m in no way a paid person for Fitbit, (unless of course they want to throw a lil’ somethin’ somethin’ my way), but I have to say, the thing is nifty.  In general, technology blows my mind.  Computers? Tablets? Fax machines?  All magic. This Fitbit? Serious magic.  It knows things.  Things that I don’t think it really should know. Quite frankly, it creeps me out just a little.

The one thing it doesn’t know?  How many carbs are being consumed!  I aim for high protein options and I strive for 5 and all that jazz. Every now and again though, I come across a pasta recipe that strikes my fancy.  This pasta recipe from Rachael Ray was one of them.  It was 2 out of 3 kid approved, and the ol’ man loved it. Guess which kid wouldn’t even try it?  Come on…Guess.  I’ll give you a penny if you get it right! She calls it “Pasta Piccata”.  I called it Shrimp Piccata.  It really highlights the shrimp.  Pasta is just pasta.

Shrimp Piccata

  • 2 Cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 6 Tbsp Butter
  • 3/4 C  Chicken stock
  • 1/3 C Capers
  • 3 Tbsp Fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 lb  Shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 10 oz. Linguine, cooked and drained
  • 1/4 C Parsley
  1. In skillet, cook garlic in butter over medium heat, for 2 minutes.
  2. Stir in chicken stock, capers, fresh lemon juice, and lemon zest. Simmer 2 minutes.
  3. Add shrimp; cook 4 minutes (or until done)
  4. Toss with pasta and parsley.

 

shrimppiccata

 

Photo 101-Go Big

My intention today was to get a photo of warmth, because yesterday it was 50°, and I thought I could get something melting.  Well, it snowed this morning.  I went out on my lunch break and I froze my ass off.  Warmth was out of the question.  So I  went for big!

These are taken at a park just around the corner from my work. I don’t even know what they are.  If they are trees slumped over or big pieces of driftwood, as  the park runs along the river.

I’m screwing around with a new lens.  I can’t seem to get the hang of it yet!

 

IMG_4511

IMG_4514

 

Easy! This week… easy is needed!

I have exactly 20 minutes to get my post up! I’m on a time schedule. I’m trying to stay on a planned schedule, but it’s not going so well this week.   Everything was planned, the gym, blog posts, the menu.  Then the ol’ man’s mom had to have unexpected open heart surgery yesterday. Poor thing ended up with a quadruple bypass. She’s off the ventilator and awake; which is fantastical for just 24 hours after surgery. Ironically, 16 years ago today, my dad died, essentially after the same surgery. It kinda sucked being in the same hospital, the same unit, the same everything.  The good thing, if there is a good thing, is that I was able to give the ol’ man some insight as to what will happen. Like when we saw her right after surgery, she had a little bit of color.  I thought she looked good! You know, good for someone who just had their chest cracked open. My dad looked gray and dead.  The smart ass he is, said “We are Italian, of course she has color!”  Point made lol.

Needless to say, I needed easy this week.  Nothing easier than the slow cooker, and since I neglected slow cooker Sunday for you, I’m giving it to you now. Easter is coming, and you undoubtedly will have leftover ham. This Pillsbury recipe is perfect!  As always, I changed it a little. On the kid scale, 2 out of 3 liked it.  I will give you a penny if you can figure out which one didn’t like it!

Cheesy Ham Au Gratin

  • 3C Milk
  • 1 Can condensed Cheddar cheese soup (10 3/4oz can)
  • 2- 5 oz pkgs cheesy scalloped potatoes, with skin on potatoes (I didn’t used the skin on)
  • 2 C Cooked diced ham
  • 2 Cans Whole kernel corn, with Red and green peppers, drained (I used a frozen bag of corn and peppers)
  • 2 C boiling water
  • Cheddar cheese (optional)
  1. Spray slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray.  In a large bowl, combine milk, soup, and contents of seasoning packets from potatoes; blend well.  Add potatoes, ham and corn; mix well.  Pour mixture into sprayed slow cooker.  Pour boiling water over potato mixture; stir to mix.
  2. Cover; cook on low setting for 7 to 8 hours.
  3. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese.

hamaugratin