Crockpot Orange Chicken and other weekend glutton

Friday, we ventured out to get the Thanksgiving feast groceries.  Afterward, I made a recipe from Pinterest.

Crockpot Orange Chicken (click for original blog post with recipe)

After putting away all of those groceries, I was burning up . . . and over it (and all things in general), so there are no pictures of the ingredients and prep, just a shot of the orange chicken, served over some delicious jasmine rice.

Yep, on a paper plate! We never have paper plates in the house, but figured for the holidays, leftover eating, etc… needed. This chicken was really good.  I wouldn’t make it often, but it was an interesting Saturday meal, and something different.  While the chicken was cooking, I did Level 2 of the 30 Day Shred and rocked it.

Sunday, we didn’t have to go for our normal grocery run, so we slept in a bit, then went to redeem our Voice Daily Deal at one of our fave places, Natachee’s Supper ‘n Punch.  $12 for $24 worth of food.  Yum!  We first each ordered a Bloody Mary (they are only $2 on Sundays – score!).  The coupon doesn’t go toward alcoholic beverages, so we still had to order $24 worth of food. No prob!  We started with queso & salsa with chips.

I got the same thing I did last time – I just love the breakfast sandwich! Mmm, guacamole.

Here’s a pic of the delicious bloody ketchup Mary.

I also got a side of fries.  I didn’t take a picture of it, so I wouldn’t look like such a glutton, but here I am documenting it.  Actually, I ate one-half of my sandwich and a bite or 2 of the other half, and maybe 3 fries.  I really filled up on the Bloody Marys chips.

Brett got the chicken fried chicken with mashed potatoes and mac & cheese. OH MY!

Then, we went home and cleaned the house for a couple of hours – like REALLY cleaned.  Brett did an amazing job on the stovetop and the wall by the sink – why does cheese always get stuck there?  We rewarded ourselves with a Saint Arnold Sailing Santa beer and it didn’t disappoint!

We may or may not have ordered Chinese food later on in the day.  Like the title says – glutton!! It’s the holidays, y’all! No? YES!

Tonight I hope to do the 30 Day Shred and eat some canned soup.  Yes, tonight and tomorrow night we are both eating canned soup because Wednesday evening I will be cooking up a storm…and eating tamales – the Texan Thanksgiving way.  I’m hoping that the strap I bought to stabilize my IT band comes in tomorrow, so I can test it out on the treadmill after work.  We shall see (if it actually comes in…and if it does, if I actually go test it out after work – I’m serious about it being the holidays and not wanting to do anything, but eat).

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Weekend and a Monday

Let me begin with saying that I wish I updated my blog more often than every few days, so I didn’t have to recap all the delicious meals over the last few (or 5) days.  But, it’s how I roll, at least sometimes, so here are the things we ate this weekend (and Monday).  Hope to be back with Tuesday and Wednesday later today, so I’m all caught up.

I no longer want running to be my only form of exercise (especially now that my left leg bothers me so, thus causing me to run only 2 miles when I do run).  So, Saturday I gave into the 30 Day Shred.  I read about other bloggers doing it, and I wanted to join in!  Oh Jillian, be gentle. Right!  Brett did his prison work out as he calls it.  He does push-ups and pull-ups and then uses an old tall laundry basket full of heavy clothes to do shrugs. I think he also sometimes uses his giant amp.  So creative.  Meanwhile I did Level 1 of the Shred, which lasted 20 minutes.  I could tell I got a good workout in, but I’ve done lots of different DVDs in the past, Zumba, and now running, so I felt a little hungry for more at the end, but I’m glad I didn’t do anything else because for the next 2 days, I could barely sit down without falling into my chair – and yes, onto the toilet.  I loved it though!! And I’m ready to get pumped with Jillian!

After that, I cooked something I saw on Pinterest.  We hardly ever have a good hearty breakfast.  Well, this ended up taking until mid-afternoon because it takes a while to bake – didn’t really think that through.

Potato Bacon Casserole (click for recipe)

Ingredients:

We baked our bacon  – not the whole pack, we saved about 4 pieces.

Here’s what it looked like before baking . . .

Meanwhile, we tried beermosas for the first time.  I see some people on the web adding vodka, but we just used a light beer and added orange juice.  Pour in the entire can of beer and drink a few sips off the top, then pour in OJ and fill the glass to the top.

These were quite refreshing.  I thought it would be nasty, but nope!

Finally, the baking was finished – final dish & my plate . . .

Delicious! But I never want to wait that long for food again, not even when beer is involved.

Sunday we made chicken tacos again.  Mmm, delicious corn tortillas (heated on the grill in foil)!

No workout Sunday because of the Shred soreness.

And that brings us to Monday’s delicious meal. Oh, it was a good one!

Ground Beef Stroganoff (click for recipe).  Another from Pinterest, of course.

Ingredients . . .

First, brown your ground beef and drain and set aside.  Also, get a pot of boiling water going for your noodles.  Then saute your onions in the butter, and then add the garlic.  After that, toss in the flour and stir.

Then add your beef broth and whisk vigorously to get any lumps out.  Then toss in the sour cream and cream of mushroom soup.

That looks a little blech, but check it out after it’s stirred – creamy!! I added a good amount of pepper, but just a little Kosher salt and it was perfect.   Then add in your beef and you’re done!

Pour over noodles and enjoy! Mmm…

I made this because I know Brett loves Beef Stroganoff, but I never want to deal with the beef part of it.  Ground beef made this really easy.  Brett said it was the best he ever had!  Monday was another rest day because I was still getting over Jillian’s shredding.  Whew!

Winner, Chicken Dinners

Monday and Tuesday were both new chicken dishes.  Dishes I got from Pinterest. Yes, still obsessed.

Baked Parmesan Garlic Chicken

This is probably the easiest thing I’ve ever cooked.  Just coat the chicken breasts with garlic powder, Italian seasoning and parmesan cheese, then bake it.  I added too much garlic powder because I didn’t measure and the stuff just came pouring out.  You could tell it, too. Sigh.  But, all in all for the easiness of this dish, I would make it again, just not often.

Ingredients (mashed potatoes aren’t an ingredient – they were a side, but I just added it in the pic).

We paired it with some probably outdated Target mashed taters and the usual roasted Brussels sprouts.

Tuesday night, we tried Chicken Penne Florentine Bake.

Ingredients:

When I poured the Sun-Dried Tomato Vinaigrette into the skillet to cook the chicken, a delicious smell followed.  Very nice.  Would probably saute chicken in this again for a salad topper, or just by itself with some side dishes like above.  After the chicken is browned, I poured in the next ingredients.

Doesn’t that look yum?  Naaah! Then add spinach.

I obviously don’t take good action photos.  Then stir in the pasta and pour everything into a 9×13 baking dish and top with cheese. Cheese!

I don’t think I would make this again.  It was good, but there was A LOT of spinach and not much of anything else, and I like spinach.  Here’s my blurry plate.  I must’ve been hungry.  Blurriness not caused by what’s in the glass in the next pic! It was Brett’s!

Brett wanted to make his contribution with a beer picture.  He’s been wanting to try this Maui Brewing Company CoCoNut Porter beer for a while now.  It was pretty good, but at $9.52 for a 4-pack, probably won’t be a frequent purchase.  Worth trying, though!

Pumpkin cupcakes (and sausage and kraut)

Friday night we went for a run before our usual taco night.  I didn’t really want to run because it was Friday and all, but I had taken off 2 nights, so it was a must.  Plus, Brett pushed me to do it, but I’m glad he did.

After I finished Mile 2, Brett was walking back toward me to tell me he was going home.  Heck, it was Friday – I went home, too.   I did 2.32 miles in 28:52.  Mile 1 = 11:51, Mile 2 = 12:49.  It was not a great run. I was tired and it was hot.

Saturday morning, I made us omelets from leftover sausage from our Sausage Stuffed Peppers, leftover tomatoes and some jalapenos.  And, of course, cheese.  It was quite a delicious omelet if I may say so.  Brett mentioned running again and I groaned.   I decided I needed to though since I had skipped those 2 days.  BAD IDEA!  We went out at about 10am and it was muggy.  I got about .5 miles in and I could hardly breathe.  I walked a few seconds before I decided I was being a wimp only running .5 miles, so I finished the mile, then walked.  My left leg was killing me at this point.  It was sore from Friday’s run.  Also, my runkeeper app didn’t start when I started running.  The clock started but distance didn’t show up until I was almost at the end of the first street and it was obviously off because it didn’t register a mile until well past the mile-marker I know.  So, that made me mad AND pandora kept pausing, so no music.  By 1.3 miles I was done. I could run no more on my left leg.  I turned off my runkeeper app and walked all the way home.   Of course, I wasn’t able to run Sunday because of my leg and probably should rest it one more day because it is still throbbing.  Need many runs in the next few weeks though because of the upcoming 5K.

Enough bellyaching – on to food!  Saturday after my painful run, I made some Pumpkin Cupcakes – courtesy of Gina’s Skinnytaste recipe.  I wasn’t in the mood to take pictures really and hers are so much prettier.  Will I ever get a camera and not take iPhone photos?  Yes!  Until then, I hope your eyeballs will accept my apologies.  The cupcakes were delicious!! The icing was good too but I ate one cupcake with icing and one without.  The next day I chose to eat one without again – the cupcakes themselves are that good – like pumpkin bread. Mmm!

Saturday afternoon, I was done with cooking – so, where did that lead us?  Luigi’s!

I could probably eat here everyday!  Their pizza is so, so nom!!

Sunday morning, we attempted to make pumpkin pancakes.  I didn’t really like the recipe, so I won’t even post it.  The batter was very thick and dense, which maybe pumpkin pancake batter is supposed to be, but these were just way too thick and filling.  I had one.  Brett even had just one.  Later we ventured out into the rainy day (oh it rained and rained, haven’t seen that much rain in…well, years!) and bought groceries.  We didn’t want to grill, but Brett wanted kielbasa, so we baked it instead…with sauerkraut and we had pressed potatoes as a side.  This time, we just boiled small red potatoes until fork tender, then pressed them with a potato masher, poured on a little EVOO, kosher salt and pepper then popped them into a 375F oven for 25 minutes.  I topped mine with a little shredded sharp cheddar when it came out of the oven.  We cooked the kielbasa for the same amount of time.  We used 2 horseshoe pieces of sausage and poured in a big jar of sauerkraut into a large baking dish.  25 minutes later, dinner was served.

Doesn’t that look like the perfect rainy day dish?  It was oh so good!  We also tried out a pumpkin beer we hadn’t tried yet.  Shock Top Pumpkin Wheat – not my fave.  I thought it had a watery back taste.

It looks as if there is no rain in sight in the picture.  Hmm…

Oh, I almost forgot.  Earlier in the day Sunday – since breakfast was a bust – we made Gina’s Skinny Spinach & Artichoke Dip again.  It did not disappoint!!

I have some new meals coming up this week! Can’t wait to see how they turn out…

Thai Fried Rice

Wow, I have a lot of catching up to do!  So, let’s get to it! First up, Wednesday (9/21).

Wednesday we made Thai Fried Rice, courtesy of Gina’s Skinnytaste recipe.  Click the recipe name to get the recipe!

Ingredients…

First, cook your rice, or get it started before you start with the main dish.  Brown the chicken in a wok or large skillet…

Remove the chicken, then add your eggs and cook until scrambled, then remove from wok.  Then, add remaining oil and onions, scallions and garlic.  Let simmer 1 to 2 minutes.

Add chili peppers, tomatoes and rice, soy sauce and fish sauce.

Then add back in your chicken & eggs, toss.

I love this dish! We’ve made it several times now and can’t get enough. We also enjoyed a Pumpkin Ale…again.  We obviously can’t get enough of that either!

Next up will be Thursday’s meal and the weekend of glutton, plus a Saturday run.

Grilled Chicken Thighs, Greens & Beans

Monday was a rest day, so we grilled.  Another Rachael Ray recipe.  I used to never cook her stuff, but now I flip through her magazines and so many things look good, plus I get an email from her everyday, so there are so many to choose from!!  We made Grilled Chicken Thighs on a Bed of Beans and Greens.

Ingredients posing:

First time cooking with escarole!

We got all this ready, then went out to grill the chicken thighs first.  Not a big fan of chicken on the charcoal grill, but these turned out nicely.

While the chicken was grilling, we each enjoyed one of these – out of our new Steelers glasses.

Brett has been waiting on Blue Moon’s Harvest Moon to come out this year.  Pretty yummy!

I didn’t get step-by-step pictures of this.  We couldn’t find fresh spices (darn you, Kroger!), so we just used our spice cabinet.

Here’s  a picture after everything was mixed in and the escarole was wilting away.

And here’s a shot of my bowl of chicken, beans & greens before I added some parm-reg.

The cheese was needed but it didn’t make the dish too pretty.

I would not make this dish again.  I liked it, but it was a little bland.  Brett didn’t really like it all too much.  The escarole was good and I liked it with the beans, but everything just didn’t go together well. I need more substance.

I shall return later today (or tomorrow) with Tuesday’s update of running and…another Rachael Ray recipe (this time a most delish one!) – I know it’s madness!

Week 4, Day 1 = DONE

Friday, I got home and was ready to make tacos.  I ditched my usual sandwich lunch and went out for a bullrito.  It was huge and filled with chicken, rice, cheese, guacamole and salsa.  Needless to say, I wasn’t very hungry, but it was Friday, so I was ready to chill.  Well, Brett arrives and asks if I’m ready to go.  “Where,” I ask.  To which he replies, “Running!”  I couldn’t argue; I needed to run some of that burrito off.  I did Week 4, Day 1 which involves: 5 minute walking warm-up, 3 minute jog, 1:30 walk, run 5:00, walk 2:30, run 3:00, walk 1:30, run 5:00.   This time I was armed with a podcast in my iPhone from kissmyblackass.org.  It was all Michael Jackson and it was just what I needed to push through those 5 minute intervals.  Woo!  I looked down at my phone on the last 5 minute interval and had 2:30 minutes left – I thought I would pass out!  Ugh! I was trying hard not to look at time remaining.  But, I did it!! I completed day 1!  I ran even more afterwards and came up with this: 2.88 miles in 39.53 – shaved off some time!  Mile 1 = 13:43, Mile 2 = 13:39 and Mile 3 (.88 miles) = 14:17.  Aaand now I’m paying for it.  Calves have hurt all weekend.  Can hardly walk when I get up and move around – have to get warmed up before I can take good steps.  It is now Monday and I was anticipating Day 2 of Week 4 today, but I’m thinking no.  I’m afraid my calves may rip open.  Grr!

Ok, on to food updates.  Thursday night was football kick-off night.  We, of course, decided to grill.  Brett grilled us some hamburgers. We always buy way too much meat for 2 people (sorry!) but Brett does end up eating the leftovers for breakfast, lunch, etc. the next couple of days, so nothing is wasted. I was craving barbecue chips, so that is what we had as a side. And that is all.

Totally forgot we were out of ketchup – bummer!  Mustard and pickle and American cheese on one (minus the ketchup) and mayo & Swiss on the other.  No, I didn’t eat all of that.  And football kick-off night would not have been complete without beer!  I started with a Flying Dog Snake Dog IPA (out of my new Freetail glass).  Not my fave – the beer, not the glass.  Then I had an Austinbeerworks Pearl Snap German Pilsner.  It was alright but I wasn’t really in the mood for such a light beer.  I won’t be drinking this in the near future either.

Friday night was taco night – what else?  Saturday I had some cereal for breakfast and my usual turkey/swiss/tomato/lettuce deli flat sandwich for lunch.  Later in the day I went to a baby shower for an attorney that I worked for for about 6 months.  I was her first assistant – I know she misses me!  I had 2 samosas – a samosa is an Indian food consisting of fried dough stuffed with different ingredients.  I had one that was stuffed with potatoes and some Indian spices. Delish!  And the other one was lamb and spices – also delish!  I really need to look up an Indian restaurant to check out.  I also had a bite or 3 of cake and a big piece of chocolate from a bakery.   Afterward, Brett picked me up and guess what we did.  Went to Romano’s for pizza takeout.  Oh yes, another pizza!   No picture b/c you’ve seen Romano’s before.

Sunday we went and got groceries for the week.  And Sunday afternoon was football time!! So, we grilled.  We bought 3 different types of sausages – jalapeno & cheese (Brett’s fave), andouille and a chicken sausage with artichoke and mozzarella cheese.  I usually like the andouille style, but didn’t really like this one.  The chicken sausage was my fave.  I appreciate that the jalapeno and cheese one is good, but I can’t deal with all that spice, so I don’t eat much of it.

Here are some sausage pix.

For a side, we made pressed potatoes.  I’ve seen a few recipes for these lately, but I used Rachael Ray’s because I was flipping through her magazine and saw it there last.  Click here for the Pressed Potatoes recipe.  We didn’t cook our potatoes long enough because when we pressed them with the glass they just broke apart. These were super easy though and a great side dish.  I love potatoes!!

We just scooped some up with a spoon and put on our plates.  Yum!

All in all we had a very relaxing and restful weekend – the best kind to have!

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