Happy Valentine’s Day + Oreo Chocolate Truffles

Yesterday evening I remembered my husband needed to bring a dessert for a Valentine’s bake share at his work.  I decided to forego baking and mix up these Oreo Chocolate Truffles that have always been a hit at parties I’ve seen them at and it was no different when Chris brought them to work today. 

Oreo Chocolate Truffles

DSC00358

Ingredients:

1-16.6 oz. package of Oreo cookies

1-8 oz. package cream cheese, room temperature

2-8 oz. bags semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:  Put cookies in food processor and process until fine crumbs result.  (I processed one-third of the bag to start, added the next third to that, and the last until all were powdered to fine crumbs.)  Next, I added the cream cheese by breaking it into chunks and processed until it was evenly distributed.  Line a cookie sheet with wax paper.  Then, make 1 inch balls from mixture and place on pan.  (I used a cookie scoop and rolled balls of equal size.)  Once balls are made, refrigerate or freeze to cool and harden. 

Meanwhile, melt chocolate using a double boiler method on the stovetop.  I filled a saucepan about 1/2 way and placed a stainless steel bowl on top.  The chocolate chips were added to the bowl and heated over simmering water stirring consistently until a smooth melted chocolate resulted.  Be careful to not let water boil or chocolate will become sticky and grainy if overheated.  Next use two spoons to dip oreo balls in melted chocolate, allowing excess to drip off, then placing back on wax paper.  Allow truffles to harden in the refrigerator.  Once hardened, put truffles into sealed container and store in refrigerator or eat.

Chris and I split one before they were packaged up and they were divine. 

Today was a normal work day aside from all of the red shirts and my pink one, oh and for the 3 cakes and chocolate cupcakes made by one of the teacher assistants, and the gift and Valentine sharing among the kids.

I started off my day with un-overnight oats—like overnight oats, but without the sitting overnight.

DSC00366   

In the mix:

1/3 c oats

1/3 c greek yogurt

1/3 c lowfat milk

1 banana

cinnamon

1 spoon peanut butter

2 handfuls blueberries

1 small handful of pecan praline granola

Lunch:

DSC00369

Cheese stick, turkey, tomatoes, and crackers to make my own lunchable.  I saved the Chobani for after tutoring snack and had some cake from the lounge instead.

Dinner was take out from the Japanese Cherry Blossom.

DSC00371

Cucumber Special Roll filled with snowcrab, tuna, avocado, ponzu and naruto sauce—I had 4 of these plus 2 pieces each of husband’s snowcrab roll and tuna roll.

I also had some vegetable soup.

DSC00372 DSC00374

Advertisements

Food Network, Humor Me Please

I’ll admit that I am a big fan of most all of the Food Network hosts and their shows.  They each have their own unique idiosyncrasies in which some can be annoying and others I’ve grown to accept and like.  For instance one that annoys me to no end, Ina Garten’s continual references to “good” chocolate or “good” cooking oil.  Really, that gets on my nerves; what qualifies as “good,” Ina? 

When I ran across this blog today I could not stop myself from cracking up.  The Food Network Humor website was launched in January of 2009 aiming to poke fun at the network’s hosts and shows viewed daily by millions.  Take a look at the humorous website when in need of a laugh to:

1. See how inappropriate some of the hosts actually are.

2. See how unoriginal some of the hosts actually are.

3. See how vicious some of the hosts actually are.

4. See how judgmental some of the hosts actually are.

5. See how loved some of the hosts actually are.

I hope you find the site as entertaining as I have.

***********************************************************************

I know I have been away from blogging for a while, but that hasn’t stopped me from eating or cooking.

A couple breakfasts the past few days:

DSC00239

Sandwich thin with Brummel & Brown and seedless raspberry preserves and yogurt

 DSC00260

Pancakes using Brittney’s Recipe topped with blueberry compote and melted peanut butter—yummy!

DSC00298

Today’s Breakfast—Barley Porridge

A few lunches here and there…

DSC00273

Fried egg on top garden veggie burger and roasted green beans

DSC00220

Salad with chicken, strawberries, feta, balsamic, and olive oil

DSC00293

Today’s lunch—turkey and swiss melted at work, bell and olive hummus, and satsuma

And some of my dinners recently…

DSC00277

Chicken noodle soup from freezer with buttered (Brummel & Brown) crackers

DSC00286

Homemade lean beef meatballs and gravy over whole wheat spaghetti

DSC00301

For tonight’s dinner, I used leftover whole wheat pasta to make alfredo pasta using lowfat milk, plain greek yogurt, reduced fat chive and onion cream cheese, laughing cow light swiss, and grated parmesan.  The bell peppers were stuffed with green onion chicken sausage removed from the casings.

Of course there has been snacking the past week with lots of chips + hummus, fruit, yogurt, larabars, almonds, etc. but have eluded any pictures.

Don’t forget to have a laugh here! 🙂

Happy 57th Birthday

Sorry I’ve been away for awhile.  Let’s track back to Thursday; shall we.  On Thursday Mom celebrated her …..

Happy Birthday to You, Happy Birthday to Mom

For dinner on Thursday we went to Mr. Ed’s.  I had only been there once before which I actually enjoyed the first time, but tonight the restaurant was having an off night.  I do not know if they had a new chef, were short staffed, running low on ingredients, or had they wanted to get us in and out without taking note of how our food was being cooked.

I started with a side salad with house made Italian on the side.  I usually request a low fat or fat free dressing, but they make their’s in-house so they do not have those offerings.  Instead of pouring the entire cup of dressing on the salad, I used the “dip fork in dressing, then salad” method. So I still got the taste of the dressing, but with out consuming all of the oily marinade.  For my meal I chose grilled red snapper which came with roasted new potatoes and steamed vegetables.

Grilled Red Snapper

It came with a lemon butter sauce which I used the same method as with the salad, but not on every bite.  Although every bite could have used it.  The food was not very well cooked tonight.  My snapper was overcooked and dry, my veggies were undercooked, and my broccoli, in particular, had a taste such that it was left in the freezer not well sealed or a bit too long–also known as “freezer-burnt.”  Sister’s grilled shrimp were undercooked, so much so that when she took a bite and got through the outer layer it was so mushy had to spit it out only to find the grey raw shrimp color.  That equals not cool!  Brother-in-law eats there all of the time and is friend’s with the owner, but he even stated his Bar-B-Q chicken was dry.  What a disappointing meal!

Now I did go with a lighter meal because I knew we had dessert to come.  I bought a red velvet cake earlier in the day, but that went uneaten (Mom took it to work Friday to share with her coworkers) due to the complimentary desserts the waitresses brought out because of Sister’s raw shrimp and Mom’s birthday.

"Happy Birthday to You" + Desserts with Candles

The highlight of the night included Bananas Foster Pie, Lemon Icebox Pie, Strawberry Cheesecake, and Chocolate Mousse Cake–all made in-house.

The dessert was the best part of the evening aside from the company.  I had a taste of each.

Brother-in-Law thought it would be funny to play a joke on Mom as he does always try to do.  Take a look at him, I can’t even get a straight picture.

Meet Duke of The Duke Academy–He is a personal trainer for athletes around the country as well as local children and adults.

So Duke thought it would be comical to tell the waitress Mom was turning 57.  And it was quite a funny joke when the waitress brought out the plate stating “Happy 57th Birthday!”

Now does she look 57?

Well she is not!!  Mom turned …..-…. today!  What is the saying…A lady never tells….

So all in all it was a fun night due to the people who were in it.  My sis just had a baby two weeks ago and preferred going unpictured. But here is her first child, my cutie pie nephew.

Nat, another trainer at The Duke Academy also joined us.

Unfortunately my hubby had work so he couldn’t make it. 😦

Here are the rest of Thursday’s eats in pictures.

Peanut Butter, Apple, and Cinnamon Wrap + Hot Tea

Turkey, Laughing Cow Light, and Spinach Sammie + Veggies + Pistachios

Sammie Close Up

Spoon of This Sweet Stuff

Now go ahead!  Take a guess!  How old does Mom look?

The Body Clock

Amazingly, I awoke this morning with no dogs indicating the need to go out, nor did I need the blare of the alarm clock’s radio.  I simply woke up on my own at 5:17 am.  Perhaps, it was my anxiousness of having to speak in front of a cafeteria full of parents, students, and faculty this evening at my school’s Open House.  All nerves aside, I continued on with my day (playing the words I wanted to share tonight over and over in my head all day long) and began with a simple pb and banana sammie.  On side I had some iced chai tea, which I brewed this weekend using the coffee pot, with a splash of almond milk and some stevia.

Lunch was thrown together quickly before leaving the house this morning.  I chowed down on a turkey, spinach, dijonaisse on a Flatout whole grain flatbread.  A not completely ripe plum and Sargento Reduced Fat  Colby Jack stick was also noshed on.

Knowing I was going to be at school until after 7:00, I also threw in my favorite thick & creamy Fage Greek Yogurt with Honey cup into my lunch bag for an after school snack.

I live 40 minutes away from my place of employment, so I knew I wouldn’t be going home and returning.  But to break up the monotony of being at work, I did make a trip to Wally World a.k.a. Wal-Mart to pick up a few things for my classroom behavior system–candy for the candy jar and colorful plates for the behavior chart.  I also made a stop at Starbuck’s for a nonfat grande iced chai tea latte.  Try saying that 10 times fast!

And then it was onto Open House and my very short 5 minute speech given to a crowded audience of people.  Isn’t it amazing the way our bodies work!?!  My body knew I would be giving a quick presentation shortly.  So why at that time just before the talk does my body feel the urge to go to the restroom, feel the urge to get some water ASAP, feel the urge to shake nervously, feel the urge to make my mind completely leave me?  Uuugghhhh!  That is such a pain and luckily I do not have to do it often.  Standing, singing, dancing, talking, teaching in front of my 9, 10, 11 year olds doesn’t phase me, but getting in front of the parents is an entirely different story!  Regardless of all of the nerve-wracking issues I was dealing with within my body,  I got through it, albeit probably not the easiest words to understand since my mind kept me in a baffled state.  On a positive note, my principal did say I sounded “educated.”  Thank goodness tonight is over with!

After arriving home, my body was telling me it was time to eat and eat fast.  I’ve been on an “egg in my salad” kick for a couple days now.  There is something fancy, delicate, and special about eggs in a lettuce salad similar to the feeling that evokes within me when I see crunchy iceberg lettuce on a fresh homemade sandwich.  So I attempted to make my first poached egg to put atop a bed of baby spinach, since I knew it takes little to no time to make.  The whole poaching of the egg was a bit of a bust (not that the egg busted); however, I lost most of the white in the water.  Oh well, better luck next time.

In the salad mix of baby spinach, I added the egg, 1/4 of an avocado, a small sprinkling of parmesan, sliced cucumber, and a few raspberries.  I added light balsamic dressing and a side of lightly Brummel & Brown’d whole wheat toast.

Lastly, I enjoyed a 1/2 cup or so of frozen mango-peach yogurt.

It hit the spot, since I have not been able to cool off all day today.  My body clock is now calling my bed, so have a good night.

Questions:  How do you overcome your nervousness when public speaking or any other situation that may cause you to be nervous?  Regarding my poached egg, what did I do wrong? 😦

Blast From the Past

Waking up this morning I was so happy because it was Friiiiday!  I was ready for the two day break to catch up on some sleep, since I’ve been averaging between 5 to 6 hours a night.  Although at times when I get more than that I feel more groggy waking up.  Next I headed to the kitchen for some breakfast deciding on an oikos blueberry greek yogurt bowl with a small ripened banana, half of an unripened tough peach because I stuck it in the fridge immediately after purchasing rather than let it sit out, and about half cup of uncooked rolled oats.

All Mixed Up, Don't Know What To Do

Lunch was then thrown together–a deli flat sammie with Hormel nitrate free oven roasted turkey, L.C. Light Swiss Cheese Wedge, side of carrot sticks and strawberries and the other half of my peach from breakfast.

When I got home from work I had a snack craving for some salty junk food.  I had a blast from the past appear in my mind.  Going back to my elementary days, my older sister, Michelle, and I would come home from school and always have a snack or two or three or four before enjoying Mom’s home-cooked meal.  Snacks didn’t spoil my appetite; I was a clean your plate so it doesn’t even need to be washed kind of girl.

One of my favorite snacks (as I always loved anything with cheese and still do) was when we poured approximately half a bag of oh so nacho cheesy, stain your finger orange Doritoes on a large plate and covered them with a massive pile of shredded cheddar cheese to be heated up in the microwave {sometimes topping with sour cream and jalapenos, other times devoured alone}.  So I thought to myself, I can still have my cake cheese and eat it too!  On a small salad plate, I poured a reasonable 15 organic all natural blue corn tortilla chips and topped them with bits of one Sargento Reduced Fat Colby Jack Cheese Stick.  After heating in the microwave until cheese was melted, I added a few jalapenos sporadically atop the chips.  Healthified version–I would say so.  And it gave me all the flavor of the original. 🙂

**************************************************************************

While we are on a “blast from the past”  I thought I would share some of my more recent past with you….going back to February 2007, my wedding.

Of course we have to start with the rehearsal dinner.  It was held at what began as a local restaurant serving Mediterranean/”Inspired American Food”,  Zea’s Rotisserie & Grill.  They now have several franchise locations outside of the New Orleans Metropolitan Area including New Mexico and Florida.  The food is rather delicious and includes a variety of flavors from Thai to Greek.  I don’t have photos of the food, but please enjoy viewing me and some of my family from the night.

My Hubby and I

(He doesn’t really wear bow ties!! It was actually from a gag gift from our shower with a matching set of men’s penguin briefs.)

My Beautiful Mother & Me Slurping Down a Mojito

Michelle with Husband, Duke

Michelle, Chris, and Me...Why Does He Look So Uncomfortable? 😉

Blurry Photo of Dad, Sorry

After my 15 minute elliptical, 30 minute weights session, and 10 minute elliptical work out, I conveniently stopped at Zea’s tonight to pick up dinner to go.  My whole point of going was to get a spinach salad with blue cheese, cranberries, pepper jelly vinaigrette, the same one served at the Rehearsal Dinner.  But upon getting home I realized I was given the “Zeasar” Salad instead.  What a bummer!  I did pick up some other things for the hubby and I to share as well–the Mediterranean Hummus with feta, calamata olives, sun dried tomatoes, fresh tomatoes, and roasted garlic (also served at the dinner), and a philly steak panini–thought hubby would enjoy.

The Zeasar Salad

The Mediterranean Hummus

Philly Steak Panini--Hubby grabbed one before I even snapped the photo.

My Plate

After dinner chocolate

Onto Our Wedding Day, February 17, 2007

Mom, Me, Dad

At hotel

Michelle and Me

St. Agnes Catholic Church

Cake Tease

And finally the honeymoon–A Cruise Aboard the Fantasy to Mexico

Sailing Away

In Our Fantasy Suite

Sight-Seeing

So we are not so good at getting pics of us together, but this one is from the first night at dinner–a pic of a pic.

My Night Cup of Chai Tea With a Bit of Nostalgia from Our Honeymoon Cruise to Mexico

That was my first cruise and would love to go back.  I love how it can be just as relaxing or just as adventurous as you wish.  We did enjoy a beach visit at one stop and power snorkeling at another.  I hope you’ve enjoyed the photos! 🙂

Question:  1. What is your go to snack when you crave junk food?  2. Have you ever been on a cruise and would you go again?

Honey, Where Are You?

When I awoke this A.M., I was feeling something warm for breakfast.  So I heated up a packet of Kashi Instant Honey and Cinnamon Hot Cereal.  I topped it with a sliced banana, a handful of blueberries, and a teaspoon of almond butter.  I had some hot chai tea on the side.  It hit the spot though my oatmeal wasn’t very warm once topping with cold nut butter and frozen blueberries, oh and snapping a couple of photos.

Lunch was similar to dinner last night– a turkey wrap.  But I did not go the mexican route.  I had two slices of Hormel Oven Roasted Turkey, L.C. Light Swiss Wedge, and spring mix all rolled up on a whole wheat tortilla.  On side I had some grape tomatoes and Chobani Non-Fat Greek Yogurt with Honey.

I bet you thought my title had to do with my hubby.  Nope, I was actually talking about my Chobani Greek Yogurt with Honey.  Side note:  I do not call the hubby “honey.”  Generally, he is either babe or boop, or Chris/Christopher.  He really hates when I call him Christopher though.  But seriously, where is the honey?  I do not taste it!  I do not see it!  I want more of it!  I need to contact the Chobani peeps and let them know they can’t call it “with Honey” if there is no inkling of honey.  If not I am going to have to stick with Fage Honey.  It makes my experience so much more tastier when I can scoop up some of that sticky, thick honey on the tip of my spoon and then scoop some of the yogurt on top.  Then I have to use my teeth to scrape the honey off of the spoon due to its gooey texture.  Mmmm, it is making my mouth water thinking about it.

After work I enjoyed a couple of snacks–a Kashi Dark Chocolate and Cherry Chewy Granola Bar and a handful of sweet, crimson-colored cherries.

After snack time and a short visit to the computer to catch up on some reading, I headed to the gym to pump some iron.  I did 15 minutes on the elliptical machine, 30 minutes of strength training on the weight machines, and ended with 15 minutes on the treadmill.  Felt good to get a full hour.  I feel like I’ve been slacking since going back to work last week.

Tonight I intended to fix beef fajitas with a corn and black bean side salad.  But I decided not to use my store-bought fajita kit and instead make up a Mexican Fiesta Bowl for dinner.

I started by browning the thinly sliced angus beef chuck in a tbsp. of olive oil.  Once browned I drained off the liquid/oil and added half a packet of store bought taco seasoning and 3/4 cup of water.  I also added 1/2 of a sliced onion and a small sliced bell pepper from the garden.  That simmered away until the veggies were tender.

Meanwhile, I cooked some whole grain brown rice.  Once the rice was cooked I added a bag of frozen corn that was sitting out for about fifteen minutes or so and a can of rinsed reduced sodium black beans.  Next I added a diced hot, red chile pepper from the garden and some grape tomatoes cut in half lengthwise.  Naturally, some seasonings were needed.  I used approx. 1 tsp. of ground cumin, 1/2 tsp. of chile powder, and salt and pepper to taste.  To be honest no measuring was done, but I did taste a couple bites as I added the seasonings.

For my Mexican Fiesta Bowl, I layered a large cooking spoonful of the rice mixture, a few slices of beef, a spoon of onion/bell peppers, about a tbsp. of Sargento Reduced Fat Shredded Mexican Cheese Blend, and a dollop of light sour cream.  I was satisfied with how well and easily this meal came together.

Question of the Day:  First, what is your favorite type of yogurt?  Secondly, have you ever contacted a food company to make a suggestion about their product?

My favorite regular yogurt is Yoplait Light White Chocolate Strawberry ( probably not the greatest due to the aspartame) and my favorite Greek Yogurt (which I am currently on a Greek Yogurt Fix only) is Fage Honey.  And I have never contacted any food companies about their products.

Quick Fix Meal

Quick Fix Post

Breakfast

Almond Butter and Strawberry Jam on Bagel Thin with Hot Green Tea

Lunch

Packed for yesterday but eaten today–turkey and dijonaisse on sandwich thin; salad made of squash, yellow tomatoes, celery, carrots, feta cheese, and drizzle of balsamic/olive oil mix; and apple sauce on the side.


Snack

Another piece of Chantilly Cake…Mmmm, Mmmmm, Good!


Dinner

This dinner came together in a flash.  Twenty minutes and dinner was on the table.  For tonight’s menu–pork tenderloin chops seasoned with salt, pepper, dried thyme, pork seasoning, and garlic powder and baked at 350* for ten minutes. Sides included frozen Steamfresh brussel sprouts and sweet potatoes both cooked in the microwave.  It was quick and easy, yet satisfying.  If only every night’s dinners could be as tasty and quick to fix!

Quick Fix Meal

Added a Tsp Brummel & Brown to the Sweet Tater

Question of the Night:  While I’m all about quickness at the moment, is there a quicker way to upload pictures onto my blog?