In between chocolate tours and fast-food Fests, its become ever more necessary to shave off some calories where possible. My intake through the week largely consists of vegetables and our cooking excursions have revolved around The 400-Calorie Fix cookbook and the Cooking Light website. Here are some of the more successful and quite tasty meals we've encountered..
First, a disclaimer regarding The 400 Calorie Fix: we are NOT following the plan or any plan, so please do not look here for any type of official results. We are simply trying out some of the recipes in the cookbook. That said, the Sloppy Joes from the 400 Calorie Fix were a quick, easy mid-week meal that made enough for a week of meals. They were also quite tasty, but I did have an issue that actually had nothing to do with the recipe itself. I've been lessening the amount of bread in my intake, and Sloppy Joes, after all, lend themselves to eating bread. That said, we did choose whole wheat buns to go with them. The Joes also paired nicely with a spinach salad.
From the same cookbook, we also sampled the BBQ Spice-Rubbed Pork Loin Roast, which was marvelous. Spicy and tender, and once again enough to feed us for a few days. I was a mite concerned with the amount of sweet in the recipe; with the brown sugar and ketchup involved. The point was deliciously moot in the end and the recipe can be found here.
Finally, this past weekend, I was searching for something healthy and light that would provide meals for this week. We consulted the Cooking Light site and found a Turkey Tetrazzini recipe that sounded good. Indeed, it was seriously yummy and made a boatload for the week's work lunches. We used every low-cal and fat-free ingredient suggested and went one step further: we substituted 100% whole-wheat spaghetti in place of the vermicelli. Delish and here's the skinny.
One final, somewhat unrelated note: music is often an integral part of our cooking. Be it a Pandora station tuned to classic rock or the iPad playing our downloaded tunes, we dig music during meal-prep. The music world has been turned on its ear lately with the recent loss of Etta James and now, stunningly, Whitney Houston. The train-wreck of a Grammy Awards last night was a good reminder of how pure talent still overshadows over-the-top WTF moments. Don't get me wrong...I appreciate crazy, out-there spectacle, if for nothing else, just for the water-cooler talk it provides. When I'm cooking or writing or just chilling, however, give me those crystalline voices (like Whitney's) and those pure harmonies, like the stirring tribute for Etta James performed by Bonnie Raitt and Alicia Keys; my favorite performance of the evening. There's a reason why the amazing Adele swept the awards last night. There's also a reason why the most memorable Super Bowl performance was not a half-time spectacular but a rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner. By Whitney Houston. Rest in peace, Whitney.