Showing posts with label snack. Show all posts
Showing posts with label snack. Show all posts

Thursday, July 16, 2015

J@H - Cheesey Popcorn

Making cheesey popcorn is almost as easy as buying it! Well, once you locate the necessary ingredients, but that's what Amazon is for! Go there now and place your order for cheese powder, buttermilk powder and popcorn kernels. You'll be making your own cheesey popcorn in no time!

Also, I have to mention that I did all of this without a microwave. We are still renovating our new house and haven't gotten to the kitchen yet. There are grand plans to install an over-oven microwave, but that hasn't happened yet. I tried a few different methods until I came upon this popcorn popping procedure. It pops all the kernels and doesn't burn the finished popcorn.

You may be asking if this cheese popcorn is "better" for you than the store-bought variety. The popcorn itself is so easy, it's worth ditching the microwave stuff. Sadly, if you're for all-natural everything, the cheese powder may be outside of your comfort zone. The yellow cheese powder contains yellow #5, a food safe synthetic dye. Want something a little less yellow? Try this white cheddar powder.

Natural or not, I ate the entire bag of popcorn in one evening. So good.

One Year Ago: Peanut Butter Bar Ice Cream Sandwiches
Two Years Ago: Nutella Thumbprints
Three Years Ago: Strawberry-Lemon Preserves & Ginger-Pear Preserves
Four Years Ago: Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Ice Cream
Five Years Ago: Crunchy French Toast

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Junk @ Home 2015 - Twinkies

Coming at you with the fourth Junk @ Home challenge of 2015. I'm a few days late, sorry!  I was out of two weeks ago and I got sick while I was away! Luckily it was just a 7-day cold and I'm nearly back to 100%. Just in time to make some knock-off Twinkies this weekend!

Lots of people have tried their own recipes for this classic snack cake. Two years ago, when Hostess was going out of business, everyone freaked out and developed their own recipe. Not being a Hostess snack cake fan, and knowing that someone would likely buy the patents and start making them again, I never jumped on the bandwagon.

This recipe was requested when I sent out the call for 2015 challenge foods. Rather than trying to replicate the flavor and texture of a classic Twinkie, I decided to create a homemade version with real world flavors. Of course I bought myself a box of snack cakes and did some taste testing. To tell the truth, I have no idea what the flavor is supposed to be. Mystery food. Franken-food.

This recipe is like an inside-out cupcake. Soft yellow cake, filled with fluffy vanilla frosting. It tastes natural, not mysterious, and delicious. This recipe won't save you any calories, but it's completely free of any preservatives. This snack cake won't last through an nuclear winter, better eat them right after they're done!

Save your money, make your own cake molds! Unless you want to make these cakes again and again. I didn't want one more piece of baking equipment to store in our little kitchen.

One Year Ago: Portuguese Sweet Bread
Two Years Ago: Olive Garden Salad Dressing & Chicken alla Carbonara
Three Years Ago: Peach Macarons
Four Years Ago: Chocolate Buttercream Truffles

Friday, January 30, 2015

Football Party Foods!

Personally, I'm not heading to a Superbowl party this year. I think the last one I attended was in 2007, living in Wisconsin as a graduate student. I'm not really a fan of the football, but it might not surprise you that I enjoy the food!

Looking for something delicious to make or bring to a party on Sunday? Here are some of my favorites...

What do you like to chow down on at a Super Bowl party? Do you need dessert? Is it all about the chips and dips? Are adult beverages a necessity? Tell me your plans!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

J@H 2015 - Cheese Whiz

It's Superbowl Time! (Do I have to put the "TM" after the word "Superbowl"? Will the NFL sue me if I don't? Anyways...) It's time for the big game and my Junk food at Home challenge was perfectly timed! You might think that I put this recipe in the challenge line-up on purpose. Nope, I had no idea when the "Big Game" was when I scheduled the challenges.

This challenge took a bit of tinkering before I came out with this final recipe. The first batch I made was a cheese sauce, simply milk and cheese. The sauce separated promptly upon being taken off the fire.

Batch two was slightly more successful. I used the same recipe that I have written below, but I allowed it to cool to room temperature before pouring into the whipper. The sauce solidified upon cooling to room temperature. There was no pouring happening with that batch. It's currently in my fridge, I think I'll try it out as a cheese spread...

The third and final batch is the one you see in this post! The cheese sauce is poured into the whipper immediately after the cheese is melted. The cheese is charged with N2O and is ready to go. I don't think that I have the industrial capacity to exactly replicate the density of Cheese Whiz. My cheese is more of a cheese foam. These first few images are of the still-warm cheese foam.

Once the whipping siphon is cool to the touch, it pipes out cheese foam like the stuff below.

The cooled cheese foam holds its shape a lot better than the warm stuff. I would recommend making this stuff just before your friends arrive. You can't put this in the fridge, as the cheese sauce would solidify in the fridge. Enjoy the entire thing of cheese in one sitting, but be sure to share with your friends. It wouldn't be very good for you to eat it all yourself!

One Year Ago: Loganberry Mallomars
Two Years Ago: Fudgy Waffles
Three Years Ago: Raw Salad & Wagamama Dressing
Four Years Ago: Chocolate and Peanut Butter Mousse Entremet

Thursday, January 1, 2015

2015 Challenge - Junk at Home!

It's a new year and that means it's time for a new Wilde Challenge! I failed miserably at my 2014 challenge. I only wound up cooking from 19/115 of my cookbooks. And... I bought a few more cookbooks this year. Maybe this will just be an ongoing personal challenge.  

I think my failure was for three reasons. 1. I was traveling for about 1/3 of the year and didn't cook very much during my heavy travel times. 2. We moved house and our kitchen was a huge mess for about a month and a half. 3. This challenge wasn't very exciting! I really enjoyed my Homemade 2012 challenge because I had specific goals and really fun food items to make.

I polled my all of you on Facebook and asked "What are your favorite junk foods?" I decided to go with a similar format as the 2012 challenge this year and have scheduled some pretty fun and tasty junk food challenges for 2015!

January 16 - Wheat Thins - Parmesan Crackers

January 30 - Cheez Whiz - Spray Cheese!

February 13 - Girl Scout Samoas (aka Caramel Delights) - Dark Chocolate - Salted Caramel Samoas

February 27 - Twinkies - Gourmet Snack Cakes

March 13 - Cadbury Creme Eggs - Half-Shell Creme Eggs

March 27 - Jelly Beans - Attempted 3 times! So many failures...

April 10 - Cheese Popcorn

April 24 - Oreos - Classic Oreos

May 8 - Cherry Poptarts

May 22 - Chipwich - Chocolate Cookies with Mint Ice Cream

June 5 - Coca Cola

June 19 - Sno-Balls - Classic Sno-Balls

July 3 - Fritos

July 17 - Girl Scout Thin Mints

July 31 - Snickers with Homemade peanut butter nougat and from-scratch caramel!

August 14 - Combos

August 28 - Moon Pies

September 11 - Tootsie Roll Pops

September 25 - Donuts

October 9 - Orange Soda

October 23 - Oatmeal Creme Pies

November 6 - Nacho Cheese Doritos

November 20 - Little Debbie Christmas Tree Cakes

December 4 - Candy Canes

December 18 - Hostess Apple fruit pie

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Restaurant Wars 2013 - Auntie Annies

Restaurant Wars 2013 continues with a mall snack, Pretzels! I don't know about you, but when I was younger, a trip to the mall wasn't complete without stopping at the pretzel place for a snack. My mom and I would shop shop shop and then get ourselves a snack pack of pretzel sticks with spicy cheese dipping sauce.

I've never thought to make pretzels and cheese dip at home because, well, I'd have to eat it all!  It's hard to make a single serving of cheese dip! This is more of a recipe that you want to make when you have a bunch of friends coming over.  You know, for game day or a baby shower.  I'm sure pregnant ladies like cheese dip.

In addition to the classic pretzel sticks and cheese dip, I thought I would make one of the sweeter treats too.  Using the same recipe as the sticks, I threw some raisins in the dough and topped the baked pretzels with butter and cinnamon sugar.  The versatility of the dough is perfect.  Next time I'm thinking of adding the cheese to the dough and making a spicy mustard!

One Year Ago: Apricot-garlic Pork Tenderloin and Potatoes and Fennel
Two Years Ago: Peanut Butter Brownies
Three Years Ago: Pork, Cranberry & Pear Salad

Adapted from several sources

For the Sponge
1/2 teaspoon dried instant yeast
2 cups bread flour
1 1/4 cup warm water

For the dough
1/4 teaspoon dried instant yeast
1 3/4 cup bread flour plus 2 tablespoons
1 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 tablespoon brown sugar

For the boiling pot & bake
4 quarts water
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon cream of tartar
1 egg, beaten
Kosher or pretzel salt

For cinnamon-raisin pretzels
1/4 cup raisins
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon cinnamon-sugar

In a large bowl, combine ingredients for the sponge.  Stir until smooth, like pancake batter.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let sit in a warm place for 2 hours.

Add yeast, 1 3/4 cups flour, salt and brown sugar to the sponge and stir until combined and form a ball. (Add raisins if using) Work in remaining 2 tablespoons flour to form a stiff dough.  Knead dough by hand for 10 minutes (or 6 minutes in the stand mixer with a dough hook).  Divide into 6 pieces of equal weight (about 4.5 ounces) and let rest for 20 minutes.

Form each piece into a long rope, about 24 inches long.  For pretzel sticks, cut the rope into 2-inch pieces.  For pretzels, form into the classic knot shape (see great pictures here).  Cover pretzels with a damp kitchen towel and let rest for 20 minutes.

Preheat oven to 450 ºF.  Place a baking stone in the oven along with a broiler pan.

Bring pot of water to a boil and add baking soda and cream of tartar.  Be careful, it will bubble up!  Boil pretzel sticks in small batches for 2 minutes, flip and boil for another minute.  Boil large pretzels one at a time for 2 minutes, flip and boil for another minute.  Remove from the bath to a kitchen towel dusted with flour.  Let dry for 5 minutes before moving to a baking sheet. Brush with beaten egg and sprinkle with salt.

Bake on the baking sheet, or slide onto hot baking stone.  Pour 1 cup hot water into the broiler pan and close the oven door.  Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the pretzels are golden brown.  Remove from the oven and place on a wire rack.

For cinnamon-raisin pretzels, brush with melted butter and sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar.  Enjoy hot!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Faux Fudge Rounds

This past weekend I was discussing the good old days of back to school with boyfriend and his parents (aka - the in laws).  We all came to the conclusion that I'm a big huge nerd and nobody likes me.  Why?  Because I loved, LOVED, going back to school in September.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Yogurt with Raspberry & Mint

You may have read yesterday that Boyfriend is trying to land an interview for a great job at Chobani.  As a part of his "research," we have dedicated the week to exploring the wide world of Greek yogurt.  Today we take a trip to the Chobani SoHo shop in New York City.

That's right!  In the summer of 2012, Chobani opened up its first shop in Manhattan.  Located right in the center of SoHo, their storefront offers up a healthy option for someone looking for a quick breakfast, afternoon snack, or late night treat.  It's also one of the only things I can usually afford in this fancy section of town.

With gourmet flavors like Fig & Walnut, Chocolate & Pistachio and their new Bagel & Lox, and some not-so-gourmet ones like PB&J, I had a hard time deciding which one to get.  You'll notice I went with my kid side and ordered PB&J.  You might also see that it came in this fancy Chobani container!  I want to head back time and time again so I can get a full set.

Since boyfriend and I don't live right next door to the CHO shop, I decided to make my own gourmet creation, in my CHO bowl!  Raspberries, fresh mint and a touch of sweet agave, I was in 3:00 snack heaven! 

And our tweet of the day - I'm loving @WildeKitchen 's "research" recipes!  Keep @PitCHObani in the job hunt so we can enjoy @Chobani 24/7/365 #InterviewOverYogurt.  Let's help boyfriend make friends with Chobani, so we can move to Brooklyn and I can have a commute that is only 1 hour instead of 2!  (Such an added bonus, because Brooklyn is pretty awesome all on it's own)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Why Bother 2012 - Crackers

Before I can get started on those 2013 goals, I have to finish my 2012 ones!  We've only got two challenges left in the Why Bother, make it at home challenge!  I'm almost 100% recovered from my bout with bronchitis (Did you know the cough from bronchitis can last for up to three months!???!  Boyfriend knows all too well) and I spent the weekend making crackers!

Crackers are a very prominent snack in the Wilde household.  About an hour after dinner, every night of the week, boyfriend heads to the cupboard and brings a box of Wheat Thins to the couch.  He proceeds to eat about half of the box.  I'm thinking I need to feed him larger portions for dinner.

For the Cracker Challenge, I thought that I should try to replace Boyfriends favorite snack with something a little healthier.  The first recipe I made was a simple wheat cracker, with a hint of salt.  They were beyond easy to make and came out just like the plain store bought brand!  The trick?  Sizing bands for the rolling pin.  I use a Wilton brand fondant rolling pin with the ring guides.  The 1/16-inch guide gave a nice even dough for cutting the crackers.  They came out crispy and delicious!

Did boyfriend have any of them?  No, he did not.  He is a fan of the highly flavored variety of the crackers and I am at a loss at how to make a powdered sun-dried tomato flavoring.  The whole wheat crackers are all mine!

I thought that I would try to ply BF with a flavored cracker, since it's his vice.  Rather than make him something that we could pick up in the cracker aisle, I decided on something fresh and flavorful.  We both love Indian food, so when I saw this recipe for ginger and curry crackers I knew it would be a winner. 

The dough for these crackers came together just as fast as the first batch and they came out such a beautiful yellow color!  The apartment smelled warm and inviting and it made me want to order in some curry.  Topped with a smidge of cream cheese and red pepper jelly, these crackers are the perfect snack.

So, will I stop buying crackers at the store?  I don't think boyfriend will let me, he loves his nightly Wheat Thins too much.  I am happy to know how easy it is to thrown a batch of crackers in the oven.

One more challenge to go before we head into the Restaurant War!  Stay tuned in two weeks for our final homemade challenge - soft cheeses!  It's going to be so exciting, maybe I'll make some bagels to pair up with my homemade cream cheese.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

No-Bake Granola Bars

It would seem that we are into the thick of winter here in the Northeast.  I'm pretty sure it was a lot warmer out before I went to Buffalo for Christmas.  Maybe I brought the cold weather back with me?  All I know is, I find myself putting more and more layers on before I head out to the train in the morning.

I suppose that it had to happen eventually.  It's not like I live in Florida and this below freezing snap is a surprise.  It's just that you get used to those warm sunny days and it's sad to see them go.  This cold weather was further a slap in the face this week when I got to work on Thursday to find my office a balmy 40 degrees.  That's right, 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

Apparently sometime Wednesday night, both boilers in the chemistry wing failed and the offices and labs proceeded to equalize their temperature with the outside world.  All the space heaters in the world could do nothing to warm up our chilly offices.  The reason?  Hood fans.

In a chemistry building, you have labs.  In each lab there are four to five chemistry hoods.  These hoods are just like your range hood over your stove, only bigger, and enclosed.  These hoods constantly pull air from within the labs and vent it through filters and out the roof.  This means that they are always bringing in new air from outside, air which wasn't being heated.  This meant that we couldn't do any lab work until the heater was fixed. 

Everyone in our wing made for the conference room to get some computer work done.  It felt like study hall.  We waited all day to hear something, anything, about the boilers.  Our facilities staff was running around the building with large wrenches, people were up on the roof banging on things, I was getting antsy just sitting in the conference room.  At least it was warm in there.

Our facilities team was able to get the boilers up and running Friday afternoon, just before we went home.  At least it will be warm in the office come next week.  Though it will be the first full week back to work, it's going to be a long one!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Cherry Granola Bars

It's Tuesday again and we're making our way through another summer week.  Where did you weekend go?  I know exactly where mine went.  I spent one half of it shopping for cars, which I have decided is way more fun if you are the one buying said car.  Or you actually bring said new car home when you finish buying.  Boyfriends new car is currently spending some quality time with the dealer, while he is away on a business trip in Florida.

The other half of my weekend was spent watching the new Batman movie.  Seriously, it's that long.

Okay, so the Dark Knight Rises isn't really 24 hours long.  It's three hours long.  It is long enough, that it can go from being sunny, to down pouring and back to sunny and dry, over the course of the movie.  I know this because boyfriend and I have discovered a new found love of biking around our area. 

We live in Montclair, NJ, which according to the signs posted in the town, is "Where the city meets the suburbs."  It's a cute little town with a main street full of shops and restaurants.  There's a Whole foods and a weekend farmers market.  If you're into antiquing, there are at least four antique stores right downtown.  There is an indie movie theater and a Red Mango, right next to a cupcake shop and just down the street from a gelato shop.

A coal oven pizza place just opened up that serves the most amazing thin crust pizza.  You can go to Tosca and have their amazing corn salad, full of roasted corn, goat cheese and walnuts.  You can head to Raymond's (lovingly referred to as Raymondo's around our house.  I have no idea why.) and fill up on a plate of eggs Benedict, if you can get a table.  Or you can just get an espresso and macaron from Le Petit Paris and people watch.

It's a great little place to live and conveniently located on the train line.  But since this is New Jersey, we are only a few miles away from several other fun towns.  This Sunday we rode three miles, all uphill, to Upper Montclair (hence why it was all uphill).  While Montclair boasts our little Indie movie theater, Upper Montclair has an equally small movie theater playing the newest releases.

The clouds started to clear around two o'clock this Sunday, so we hopped on our bikes and rode up the hill to Upper Montclair.  (Much faster than our first attempt a few weeks ago I might add!)  We stopped and got sandwiches and smuggled them into the movie theater where we enjoyed three hours of Christian Bale and Anne Hathaway.  We came outside and it smelled like rain, but it was also intensely sunny and warm.  The only trace of the rain was a few puddles here and there and a wet bike lock.

One final random question here.  How much does it cost for a movie ticket at your local theater?  I felt like I was getting a deal the other day only having to spend $11 per ticket on our movie.  This is after buying two IMAX 3D tickets a few weeks ago for $18 each!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Why Bother??? 2012 - Soft Pretzels

Shopping malls.  Sporting arenas.  A street corner in New York City.  An odd collection of places, but they are some of the only places that you can find a soft pretzel.  Sweet and salty, yeasty and warm, soft pretzels are one of the food items that you would rarely think to make on your own.  These huge pretzels are among the only reasons that I like going to sporting events.  Especially baseball games.  I have many memories of sharing a box of soft preztel bites with my mom and these memories also have to do with sporting events too.

Back in the days of the early nineties, the Buffalo Bills were a football team to be reckoned with.  In those years, we had Jim Kelly, Bruce Smith, Steve Tasker, Thurman Thomas and Andre Reed, all under the direction of Marv Levy.  You'll remember that I am indifferent to football these days, which means that these guys were a big deal, because I remember their names to this day.  The dream team went to the super bowl four times in four years.  They also had one devoted fan, my dad.

He would hunker down every Sunday in front of the big screen (or the radio) and watch his team fight their way to victory.  In the years of the dream team, wins outnumbered losses and it was a happy time.  Unfortunately, the dream eventually faded and we were left with a team that was recovering from the retirement of many of its stars.  The win-loss record suffered and so did their fans.

In the years of awakening, those sad years after 1995, the Buffalo fans held out hope that their team could rebuild and return to their old glory.  Those of you who follow football know this, Buffalo has yet to return to those dream win-loss records.  Sundays of those post-1995 years were spent escaping the house, running from the game and hiding from the darkness it brought over the house.  Football meant sadness and depression (and yelling and the TV). 

To escape the football fog, my mom and I would head out Sunday afternoons.  We would hit the mall and shop to our hearts content.  Trying on clothes, looking at sparkly jewelry, but mostly just enjoying some time together.  At the end of each shopping trip, we would head to the pretzel stand and get a pack of pretzel bites.  I'd get the nacho cheese and mom would get the cheddar.  These buttery little bites of bread would be the prefect end to our escape day. 

The decision to make soft pretzels at this time of the year was motivated by the upcoming Super Bowl.  Of the two recipes I tried out, I preferred the buttery mall pretzels.  The boiled pretzels just didn't turn out like I wanted them.  My verdict on this challenge?  It was totally worth it to make these guys.  They didn't take nearly as long as I thought they would and were completely delicious.  I think that I can skip the mall pretzels now, because these were just as good. 

I was unable to replicate the stadium pretzel.  This just means that 1. I'll have to keep trying and 2. I'll have to keep going to sporting events until I get it right!  Let's go BUFFALO!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Snack Week! - On the Go

There are times that I find myself in need of something to eat, but with no time to cook.  Happens to you too, right?  So, I thought that I would share with you a few of my favorite pre-packaged snack options!  These are the things that a stocked in my fridge and pantry, just in case.  (Disclaimer! - I have received nothing from these companies to say nice things about them!)

My favorite yogurt!  140 calories and so many delicious flavors.  Since it's Greek yogurt, it's a lot thicker than traditional yogurt and it's packed with 14 grams of protein!  Yum!

Nothing special here, it's a banana.  Fruit is the perfect on the go snack, especially ones that come in their own wrapper!  Things like peaches are a little harder to eat on the go, I go for fruit cups then.
We have a hot pot in our office, perfect for heating up some water for hot cocoa.  You could go for the calorie-free version, but in the afternoon I need a little sugar.  Hello mini marshmallows!

Such a neat little product.  I originally got hooked on their hummus, then I discovered these single serve items!  Amazing!  They even come in my favorite flavor, red pepper!

Okay, I'm not suggesting you just eat a wedge of cheese, grab some crackers or celery and enjoy!  The garlic flavor is amazing too and at just 40 calories, so nice.

So that's it!  Snack week is coming to an end, sad.  I hope that you've come away with a few ideas for noshing.  I'll try to include more snacks in my blogging cycle.  Now excuse me, I'm going to go eat some hummus.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Snack Week! - Zucchini Bread

The only photo I have, because they ate it all...
Happy Friday everyone! Where has the week gone? From the sounds of it, half of the world has been sick this week with some cold or flu virus or another. I know that I was. Luckily I had all these tasty snacks in my fridge, ready for that mild hunger pang of a sick person. You know how it goes, you’re hungry, but you just can’t manage to eat something tangible? Snack week couldn’t have come at a better time.

Did you also hear that everything was ready for me? I prepared all of these foods on Sunday! So maybe you have a crazy work week ahead, maybe the kids have an insane amount of obligations or maybe you want to have some free time this week. Take a few hours on Sunday and you’ll be all set for the week. All of the baked goods require nothing more than a bowl and a big spoon.

This last treat for snack week is something that I never actually ate. I brought these loaves into work and they were gone before I even had a slice. It was three o’clock in the afternoon and I was feeling hungry. Thinking, nobody was eating the zucchini bread, I bet I can get myself a snack. Walk walk walk to the break room. Noooo! An empty container! Where did it all go? According to one of my labmates, if it’s there after three, it’s going to disappear quick. Nuts, maybe I should have hidden some.

Tomorrow, for the last day of Snack Week! I'll be posting many of my favorite pre-packaged healthy snacks.  Because sometimes you just don't have the time!  Thanks for tuning in this week!  Oh, what to do next week, last week of healthy January.  Have you been behaving?  Detoxing from all those cookies?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Snack Week! - Fruit Dip

While I really hate being sick, I love the feeling of being well again. I’ve spent the last few days in a fever-induced haze, floating from home to work and back home again. Spending the evenings staring at the TV and eating ice cream. What? Ice cream is good sick food, there is calcium, protein and sugar. Everything a sick body needs. Plus it’s soft and a sore throat likes cold, soft food. Thankfully the haze has lifted and today I have been incredibly productive.

While sick, the dishes piled up in the sink and clothes lay strew across my apartment floor. If I lived with anyone else they would be disgusted with me, or they would have at least picked up after me. Maybe I should wait to be sick again until I move in with boyfriend. After a long, and productive, day at work I decided to clean it all up! Dishes, into the sink! Besides, they were starting to smell. Clothes, into the washing machine! Get rid of all of those sickness viruses. Ooo, I should wash the sheets while I’m feeling productive.

I’m healthy, almost, and ready to get back into the world! I’ve missed working out! It’s so hard to go for a run when your lung capacity is down to 50%! Lifting weights with sick muscles seems so much harder. But that all has changed! Bolstered by my week of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, I’m ready to hit the treadmill, rock my Bodypump bar and bust a move at Turbokick. Ready ready ready! I might be a little hyper from all this energy that got bottled up during my bout with the virus. Forgive me and have some fruit dip.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Snack Week! - Ham & Cheese Scones

There are good scones, and there are bad scones. I’ve been unfortunate enough to have had many, many bad scones. In the winter months in Madison, WI, the Dane county farmers market migrates inside. If you head to the beautiful Monona Terrace, overlooking lake Monona, you can still get local produce, fresh baked deliciousness and dog treats. Although I think it’s mean for them to sell dog treats, when dogs aren’t allowed at the farmers market. Such a tease for the pooches.

It was during one of these cold, wintry weekends that my parents came for a visit. As we’ve discussed before, winter is not the most desirable time of year to visit Madison. Unless you like ice fishing, apparently ice fishing on lake Mendota is amazing. So ice fishers, head to Madison. Back to the parents, I decided we should head to the farmers market, because there isn’t much else to do on a cold Madison Saturday. We stocked up on jams, carrots and cheese then picked up some pastries from the Amish table.

Nothing against the Amish table, I’ve had lots of their baked goods. The pies are amazing, the cookies are perfect, but these scones… let’s just say the dog would have loved them. They were dry and lacking flavor. I was so sad, we stopped at Starbucks and got some cookies. The Amish cart redeemed itself later in the summer with another knock-out pie.

So, while I’ve had some pretty amazing scones, they are so heavy and calorie laden that I try not to indulge that often. The average (delicious) scone from Starbucks has over 450 calories. More of a meal than a snack. Here I introduce a protein rich, lower calorie scone. It’s not filled with sugar and dried fruit, it’s filled with ham and cheese, yum.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Snack Week! - Granola Bars

Monday passed in a bit of a fever-induced haze. You know how it goes, you’re sitting at your desk, staring at the computer, then it’s an hour later and nothing has sunk in. My brain is boiling, or something like that. All I wanted to do was go home and curl up in bed, the lab is so cold! Or it’s the fever.

I’m so glad that I spent the weekend cooking and baking, because right now I have zero energy. I think that I’m running on negative energy, the world is pulling the energy right out of my body. I’m also jazzed that I decided to make these granola bars for snack week. They are chewy, delicious and filling. Adapt them according to what nuts and seeds that you like. I’ve made them with raisins and walnuts instead of craisins and soy nuts. I’ve drizzled them in chocolate on my more crazy days. I think that I’ll have one of these for lunch. Eating sounds like a lot of work today.
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