Sunday, February 24, 2008

Why am I eating this?

I am eating pieces of bread dipped in a mixture of olive oil-Parmesan cheese-pepper-garlic salt-Old Bay-paprika-red chili flakes.

It tastes weirdly savory. I don't know if I like it or not, but I can't stop eating it.

Must be because I am fighting off the flu.

Yeah. That must be it.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Oh gross.

In the Restaurant section of today's Boston Globe, in a review of a shabu shabu restaurant in Allston, there is a line that reads:

"shabu shabu started in the 13th century, when Genghis Khan's warriors cooked dinner right in their helmets"

Which made me throw up in my mouth a little.

I know what my hat smells like, and I shower everyday.

The idea of eating something cooked in the helmet of a sweaty warrior doesn't appeal to me at all. It's like that time I was watching a travel show on PBS and these intrepid adventurers were in Mongolia or somewhere and they were drinking horse milk mixed with blood out of a skin flask.

Right then and there I decided two things.

1.) Always, always, ALWAYS check for the vegetarian option.

and

2.) If I ever go to Mongolia I will be bringing the biggest bottle of Valium you ever saw. Because I would hate to be rude and refuse the blood & horse milk flask - but I would have to be really really sedated to get it down.


Monday, February 18, 2008

Again with the fake chicken!

There is something wrong with me. I can't stop eating those fake chicken strips.

I swear I am going to lay a couple of plastic eggs any day now.

Last night I made a big bowl of food because it was kind of an icky night and I wanted something filling but not too many points.

Here's what went into the bowl:

1st layer - brown rice (1/2 cup = 2pts)
2nd layer - black beans (1/4 cup = 1pts)
3rd layer - broccoli (1/2 cup = 0pts)
4th layer - chopped tomato (1/2 cup = 0pts)
5th layer - fake chicken (3oz = 1pts)
6th layer - shredded mozz (1/4 cup = 2pts)

For a grand total of 6 points!

I also topped it off with some chopped cilantro which I love. Next time I will use fat-free shredded mozzarella, and add more broccoli & tomato. Because unlike George Bush Sr., I LOVE broccoli.

Or maybe omit the cheese altogether in favor of the fake chicken.

I forgot to mention in my post yesterday that on the way home from Russo's I stopped at Whole Foods and bought three packs of the fake chicken. And made the Evil Twin buy one too. Like I said, I have a problem. Cluck cluck...

Oh also, the lime frozen fruit bars from Whole Foods are $$$, BUT they are only ONE POINT! And for an extra 2 points you could dip it in a jigger of rum as you eat it! Like a Weight Watchers mojito, sort of.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Russo's - I hate that I love it so much :(

I have to get back in the groove of eating stuff I make from scratch.

I feel so much better when I do, and I eat less when I do.

So today I dragged the Evil Twin and her Boyyyyyfriend out to Russo's in Watertown because they needed a few things for dinner.

This is funny to me for a few reasons. Among them is the fact that it used to be that the Evil Twin only made reservations or coffee. Her interest in cooking has only recently increased in proportion to the amount of time she spends with the Boyyyyyfriend.

(Well except for the time she lived in Spain and called me to ask me how to make pommes frites. Which really taught me that I need to be very specific when giving directions because little potato cubes means something different to the Evil Twin. It must have taken her HOURS to make that dish... )

The other reason is because one time she was roasting a chicken and well, um, anyway, I don't want to make anymore fun of her culinary skills. It's the only skill I have that I can lord over her, so I need to use the power judiciously.

So what was I going on about?.....

Oh yeah, Russo's. What a major clusterf*ck of a place it is!

I knew it was going to be bad when we were walking in and a woman rammed into me with a trolley on her way out. Just 'cause she could.

Once inside, it only got worse. It's like being in a tilting box filled with ball bearings - everyone just ricochets off each other.

The aisles are barely wide enough to accommodate two trolleys side-by-side which is made worse by the employees wheeling out big gray stock carts out to constantly restock the shelves.

However the produce is so gorgeously displayed that all I want to do is stuff myself stupid with vegetables and greens.

Plus they carry a number of locally produced items, like my favorite Baer's beans, and local milk, and eggs, and pasta.

And the biggest reason I like shopping there is that not only does their checkout line move insanely fast, I get out of there for about half the price as I would at Whole Foods.

So now I have no reason to eat crappy because I have filled my fridge with lovely healthy low-point foods!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Valentine's Loving Chez le Spruce Guce

Every year my most favorite person has a Valentine's dinner for our dearest Don, whose birthday happens to be on Valentine's Day.

And it is always an honor and a pleasure to be included. Mostly a pleasure!

To start with we had homemade pate, fully loaded with Calvados. I could not eat it fast enough and had to be restrained from smearing it on myself. I think I bit my sister by accident when she tried to cut in.

Me and pate have a long and often embarrassing history.

Then we had this gorgeous bean stew made with real ham bones and Baer's beans and chunks of soft garlic.

The main course was this gigantic grilled tenderloin. It was beyond delicious. As Spruce was cutting it, I was standing beside him ostensibly helping, but really just picking out the most savory grilled bits. I don't often eat meat because when I do it's at either my Mom's or at Spruce's and they are meat maestros. Anytime I stray, I am woefully disappointed.

I think there were sides. I am sure there were, but I was too busy wrestling with my hunk o'meat to be slowed down by that business!

The meal was capped off with a massive chocolate cake that was layers of chocolate genoise, chocolate mousse, frosted with ganache, and liberally sprinkled with crack.

Gourmet homemade pate: 23,000 points
Perfectly grilled tenderloin: 3000 points
Chocolate Cake: 57,000 points
Valentine's Day with people you love and who love you: Priceless

So all in all a wonderful Valentine's Day.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Tuesday is Weigh In Day

Last week I lost 3.2 pounds and this week I found one of them.

Yep. I put back on a pound.

Argh. After today it's nothing but broccoli florets and tea.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Fake Chicken Broccoli & Ziti

I don't eat lots of meat at home because I suffer from this curious ailment that I call FADD.

Food Attention Deficit Disorder.

I will go to the store and buy a chicken, some lettuce, a little tomato, and head home with every great intention of having a nice little roast chicken with salad for dinner.

However, what happens is I get home and have toast with mayo and lettuce and a Fudgsicle instead.

I wind up sticking the chicken in the fridge for a couple of days, until I become so resentful of this useless chicken that needs me to cook it, that I end up bunging it in the freezer for the next three months.

As for the tomato? Well, probably the day before it rots completely I will eat it with my lettuce sandwich.

It's the folly of the well fed to be this loosey-goosey with food I tell you!

Anyway, this is why I've stopped buying meat - it's too much pressure.

So now I buy Smart Strips, basically a fake chicken strip that practically never goes bad ever. And can't possibly be that many points.

And the best fake chicken broccoli and ziti recipe is to sautee the Smart Strips in a little olive oil, add in some broccoli florets (I used frozen), and then add in some cooked pasta and maybe a little of the cooking water so it doesn't all stick at the bottom.

Cook it until the broccoli isn't frozen. It only takes a couple of minutes. The best part about the Smart Strips is that they won't give you salmonella like real chicken would if you undercooked it.

Now the key is to remember to bring the leftovers to work.
Y'know the FADD and all makes it hard to remember these things.

And then I wind up at work with no lunch and have to have a box of Thin Mints to tide me over instead.

:(

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Ugh, I hate thinking this much about stupid points!

The first Weight Watchers weigh-in was on Tuesday and I lost three whole pounds.

Holy crap!

Considering that I now just presume that everything I actually like to eat has 17 points it's a real miracle I lost anything at all.

But I will say that contemplating everything I put in my mouth has made a difference. For example, one Thin Mint has one point. Ok, so three is my dessert for the day. Or a whole box for my entire day's allowance.

I really think that I could just eat Thin Mints for one whole day.

And oysters - a half dozen is only two points. So if I am trying to stay around 24 points then that means I can eat about 72 oysters for one whole day.

Hey, dieting actually doesn't seems so bad if you start thinking about all the things you can eat!

Confession time: I haven't been writing everything down in my 'Food Journal'. I am using the "balancing my checkbook" approach which consists primarily of keeping an approximate running tally in my head.

Friday, February 1, 2008

My Dark Secret

Ok I have to confess, I am hoping that our office doesn't actually produce enough Weight Watchers participants to have an "At Work" meeting.

Seriously. I am beginning to panic about this. Last night for example I ended up at dinner with only 10 points left.

Except for I was at my friend NewMommy's house and since her baby is only like 11 days old and she is nursing, she is still allowed to eat whatever the heck she wants and well being around a baby turned my brain to mush and I left the stupid points counter in the car and we wound up ordering Chinese food. Lots of gorgeous Chinese food: glistening dumplings, spicy chicken, creamy crab rangoon, moo shi chicken with plum sauce....

Probably that meal was about 48 points. But it tasted wonderful!

Although that now means that if I calculate everything correctly I can't eat anything but iceburg lettuce until Sunday to make up the points. And like 10 baby carrots.

***sigh***


Gah! It's not worth it to me to be completely cranky on 24 miserable little points a day