Posts Tagged ‘mexican food’

So, I have a confession to make. Lately, I have been rather lazy and uninspired in the kitchen. And I have been craving lots of “bad” stuff: cheese, carbs, melted cheese, hot carbs, cold cheese, crunchy carbs… you get it. Same ingredients, different ways: not great for the waistline!

And a few days ago all I wanted for dinner was a big plate of cheesy nachos. I thought about going to pick some up, or going out, but then I took a step back and said to myself, “Self, you can make tasty, but healthier nachos at home. Stop being so lazy!” (Sometimes I have to just be straight up with you guys- I talk to myself).

So I grabbed a can of TJ’s Cuban Black Beans from my pantry…

These are great for those lazy nights because they are pre-cooked with onion, green peppers, and lots of spices. Great flavor! Even if you don’t have a TJ’s near you, I am sure you can find beans in your store that are cooked with spices and veggies. This will save you a lot of time on nights when you just don’t have the energy to do it yourself.

I heated up a big bowl of beans and topped them with chopped tomato, part-skim mozzarella cheese, low fat yogurt (instead of sour cream), and salsa. I had some sweet potato ruffle chips (also from TJ’s) and corn chips on the side.

This was SO GOOD! I think the key to making this dish healthy is to load up on beans and skimp a little on the chips. The chips are great for a little crunch, and to satisfy the carb craving, but the beans are really what keeps you feeling full and satisfied. And low fat yogurt or sour cream gives you that hearty, creamy taste without all the fat.

And as long as you are eating chips, might as well go for the sweet potato ones and have some extra vitamins, right?

A perfect bite…

I’m sure you guys have made “nachos” at home- no big cooking revelation here- but t it really was so satisfying for me. So much better than going out for a big plate of Mexican food, and coming home feeling nauseous, bloated, gassy, and like you just gained 5 pounds in salt/ water retention. Sometimes it’s just not worth it!


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Good morning, blog world!

I am currently reporting to you like this:

What am I doing? I am “typing” — hands-free! Last week, when I realized that I really couldn’t type for a while, I ordered MacSpeech Dictate, a voice activation software. I have never seen anything like this. It is amazing! Very accurate, very easy to use, and will make my recovery much faster. I am actually going on vacation starting this weekend, so that will help to. But I have so much typing to do at work that I couldn’t go  two weeks without typing.

This software is totally worth it for anyone who has wrist, arm, or nerve problems. What is also very cool about it  is  that you can make multiple profiles, so that, for example, Loren  could also use this program because it would learn to recognize his voice separately. He has a bad wrist ( I know, we are both old people) so this is great for him to! You can also find great programs for PC’s (they are actually rated even higher by most review sites).

Anyways, onto  yesterday’s  eats. After a 35 minute workout on the elliptical at the gym, I came home and made a big bowl of oats sans  pumpkin, but with banana, almond milk, and  topped  with some homemade apple butter.

I also stopped at Starbucks for my usual: a skim  awake tea latte  with one pump  of pumpkin syrup.  The oatmeal was very good-  I always feel so healthy starting my day off with oatmeal.

Lunch was packed at home, as usual. I made a turkey bologna sandwich and  packed lots of fruits and veggies to go with.

If I use half a banana at breakfast, I tried to eat the rest of it for snack that day. That way, I don’t feel that I am being wasteful, but I also don’t eat it all at once. In addition to the snacks above, I also had a small cooked chile,  given to me by a student.  I think it was stuffed with veggies and shredded chicken.  These ladies know how to cook!

I tried to be creative for dinner… eh,  it didn’t go so well. I mean,  I ate it,  but I would change a few things that I made it again. Basically, I try to make a kind of  “Mexican casserole”, layering corn tortillas, beans, and veggies. We had just bought some fresh veggies and I was trying to incorporate them into the meal-  but I think I try to incorporate too many.

For example, broccoli. Bad idea.

Here is the finished product:

I just doctored up my piece and Loren’s  with avocado, yogurt,  cheese, and hot sauce. It was actually pretty good once I took the broccoli off my plate!

For dessert, I had a mini ice cream cookie sandwich from Trader Joe’s.

Can’t believe I “typed”  that whole post while talking to my computer. You can just picture me sitting in my  kitchen, talking to my little  Mac-  that should  make you laugh!

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I woke up yesterday and headed straight to the gym… but to the pool instead of the machines! I swim all the time during the summer and tend not to in the winter months because I don’t like walking home in the cold with wet hair. But I need to more. It is so much better for my knees than anything else! I did 30 minutes of straight laps, some stretching, and felt great- pain-free!

I wasn’t very hungry for breakfast after my weekend of over-eating, but I was craving lots of fruit. I made a smoothie with frozen mango and berries, a banana, and peanut butter. I also had a Honey Graham Kidz Bar.

And I packed lunch to take to work. I was working from 1-9, so I needed some good snacks to hold me through the day.

I brought a turkey sandwich on Ezekial Bread with laughing cow cheese, lettuce, tomato, and mustard; a bag of baby carrots; 2 clementines; 1 string cheese; and a bag of TJ’s almonds, cashews, and whole grain crackers. It was the perfect amount to graze on during the day. The sandwich was the best part!

At 9 pm sharp, I came home to a lovely spread that Loren put together… his favorite, of course- burritos! I love them, too, so I was a happy camper. We used TJ’s whole grain tortillas and packed them full of brown rice, black beans, veggies, lowfat yogurt, and hot sauce.


Oh, and some melted cheese in there, too….

He made a big salad on the side, too, because I requested lots of vegetables.

I actually went back for more salad. I was so excited to munch on cold, crisp veggies!

Burritos have to be one of the cheapest, healthiest, easiest weekday meals. And the tastiest!

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Yesterday’s eats were almost back to normal- no big meals out, so that was good! We have nooo food in the fridge because we won’t be spending much time at home for 4 days, so I had to scrounge a bit to find healthy, filling meals.

After doing Level 2 of the 30 Day Shred (killer!), I threw together a bowl of fridge-finds: the last of my cottage cheese, a chopped apple, some pumpkin granola, and some apricot preserve. It was pretty tasty if I do say so myself, and a great post-workout dish.With a Chai Black Tea (Yogi-tea brand).

Why does my almond milk always curdle in my tea?! The bizarre mysteries of the universe that I cannot unfold….

I had nothing to bring to work for lunch because we are  fresh out of all veggies and fruits. But, I got lucky!

I work in an adult education program, and the students were having a pre-Thanksgiving party in class. They all brought in the most amazing dishes from home. We have a lot of Mexican and Latin American students and they made the most delicious food!

As much as I would have loved to eat a bunch of rice and beans and tacos, I tried to make myself a healthy version of Mexican food. I plopped a lot of salad and guacamole onto my plate and a sprinkle of Oaxacan cheese. On the side, I had a few homemade blue corn chips (amazing!), some pureed black beans, and a little bit of potato salad.

It was soooo good! And I got my veggie-fix. 🙂

I also had a vegetarian flauta (a small rolled up tortilla, filled with potato -I think- and lightly fried) earlier in the morning. They were eating Mexican food at 9 am! I don’t know why that is always so surprising to me… I remember when I went to India thinking how weird it was that people at Indian food for breakfast. OBVIOUSLY, genius!

I was very snacky yesterday- wanted to much all day. My snacks included:

A bowl of popcorn at work (so easy to make in the microwave- pretty healthy!).

A smoothie when I got home (with frozen fruit, water, and almond milk- got my fruits in!):

And a string cheese:

I was so snacky, that even though I made this for dinner…

(Chicken sausage, spinach, garbanzos, and brown rice)

….All I wanted was this:

A PB and jelly on Exekial bread with a glass of almond milk.

Don’t worry, Loren ate up the good, healthy, real food!

Buzz was hamming it up during dinner, and wanted to be photographed, so I obliged.

And later, after a really hot bath, I was feeling faint/ exhausted, so I had some Tasti-Delight (from my freezer). Dulce de Leche with some chocolate chips. Miracle cure! I felt much better. 🙂

Now off to work. Today is all about getting out of work early, cleaning my apartment, and going to see my parents/ family for dinner. I might or might not exercise. My body (read: knees) kind of feels like it needs a day off! Maybe something light, like a long walk…

See you guys later!

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Yesterday was a “rest” day, so I rolled out of bed and iced my knees for a while instead of hitting the gym. I warmed up with this:

A very pumpkiny bowl of oats with flax seed, nuts, and giant raisins on top. It was delicious!

But it was sooo filling… I couldn’t finish. I decided to pack up what was left and bring in to work for snack along with some cottage cheese. I ended up eating them cold and mixed together. Weird, I know, but it was good! Later, for lunch, I had a  humus/ avocado sandwich on Ezekial Bread.

Close up of my snacks:

On the way home, I had a yummy, organic string cheese. These babies are full fat, so you get all of the real flavor but in a well portioned bite…. so no guilt!

Because my afternoon snack was light, I was huuungry for dinner. We made burritos with brown rice, black beans, salsa, greek yogurt, and lettuce.

Nothing better, nothing faster and easier to make!

I ended up going back for another scoop of rice and beans- not gonna lie. I was really full afterwards!

This morning I woke up and faced Jillian for Level 2 of the Shred. It totally got me out of my gorggy morning state and ready for the day. I am pumped for the weekend!

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Happy Thursday, all! It’s almost the weekend….

I am actually headed to Chicago this weekend so I am extra excited for this one! I am taking Monday off for my travels, but it doesn’t count as a vacation day because I worked yesterday (a holiday). I love that!

Yesterday morning I headed straight to the gym. I felt much more energized after a day of rest. I did 15 minutes on the full body cross-trainer (so hard! feels like hiking) to mix things up and 20 minutes on the elliptical. Plus 15 minutes of weights and abs. It was great!

Following Tuesday’s yummy breakfast burrito, I just had to have another one. They are just too good! It had scrambled eggs (1 white, 1 full egg), tomato, and a small slice of sharp cheddar. I buy full fat, full taste cheese because I find a little goes a long way. I would rather have less cheese with a lot of flavor. (I do have to put the cheese slicer away right after I portion some out, though 🙂 ).

IMG_8965Of course, there was lots of spicy flavor in there- salsa and hot sauce!

IMG_8966I also packed a lunch that was quick and easy to put together:

IMG_8967I had never had these TJ’s roasted veggie enchiladas before, and the ingredient list and nutrition info looked great.

IMG_8968Unfortunately, they weren’t my favorite. I mean, I ate them, but the texture of the tortillas was all wrong- kind of mushy. Maybe they are better in the oven, but I don’t have one of those at work! They were chock full of veggies, so I will give TJ’s that- full of spinach, corn, mushrooms, and eggplant. And the 2 enchiladas for 300 calories were verrrry filling. I ended up eating the orange pepper throughout the day with some Sabra humus I have in the work fridge. I still have that tomato in there… need to eat that today!

I also had some strawberries and grapes for a mid-morning snack.

IMG_8969My boss actually invited me over for dinner last night with her family (she is the best boss ever), and I didn’t feel it was polite to snap photos. You understand, I hope!

Her husband made a delicious beef bourguignon, which I had never tried! It was delicious! Beef with carrots and potatoes (though I didn’t go for the potatoes). The sauce was full of great beef + red wine flavor. Loved it! She also made a great spinach salad and served some bread. I had 1 slice. And she even made an apple crisp for dessert called an Apple Betty. Anyone tried it before? It was AMAZING! I had a small portion with a bit of vanilla ice cream. Oh, and, we had some wine… 🙂

Now off to brave the cold (where did that gorgeous, sunny weather go??), and head to work….

QUESTION: I am thinking of making something to bring to Thanksgiving this year at my half-sister’s house, but I am not a big baker or dessert person. I really loved the Apple Betty- maybe I will make that, but I want to know- what are your favorite desserts to make for the holidays?

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