I have mentioned before that the family and I are eating healthier this year. This includes cutting WAY down on sugar. I still have a little sugar in my coffee every morning but that is about it. Well, last night I was asked to bring dessert to a Super Bowl party. I made these wonderful Chocolate Chess Squares. I tried one while hot because I had never made them before and didn't want to take them if they were bad (good excuse, huh?) and then I had one at the party. We had 4 leftover that wouldn't fit on the platter so I had one with my coffee this morning. I know, but it was so good! The family went out and played in the snow for a while this morning and then...CRASH! I am so tired and so grouchy! I have felt so good while eating healthy and my energy level has been great. I've been working out almost daily and didn't feel worn out by mid-day anymore. So, is sugar the culprit? I could blame it on something else... long weekend with little sleep, hormones, whatever but my final answer? Sugar! Therefore, I have a new resolution. I will do my best not to feed my body sugar. I am even going to work on removing the sugar from my coffee but that may take a while. Are you going to join me? If nothing else do a little 1 month test. Remove sugar from your life for 1 month and then go back on it. If you cannot tell a difference in how you feel go ahead and incorporate sugar back in your life. If your results are like mine let's kick the habit for good!
BTW, during our first month of healthy living I lost 12 lbs and 12.5 inches. Josh lost 11 lbs and 7.5 inches. Blake lost 6 lbs and 5 inches. Doug lost about 10 lbs but has not measured yet.
Now on to the weekly menu. You have probably noticed that we do not mind eating leftovers. In fact, I always try to cook enough for the next day's lunch. It is just much easier on me and more cost effective. I will include some notes and recipes for you this week. I hope they are helpful.
1. 1/2 c. grits and 1 egg
2. Yogurt & orange (make sure to watch the sugar in yogurt!)
3. Turkey Soup
4. Homemade pasta sauce w/ whole wheat pasta
For the sauce, I am using ground turkey and spicy Italian sausage that I got on sale last night. I saute onions and garlic then add the meats until browned. I strain off all of the fat and place in a dutch oven. I throw in 1 bag of whole tomatoes that were from my garden. I also have a frozen bag of chopped tomatoes from the garden that I add in. You can add Italian seasoning or whatever seasonings you like. I will let this cook at a high simmer for several hours to cook out some of the water from the tomatoes.
2. Protein shake w/ banana ( I freeze bananas when they begin getting over-ripe. I just take them from the freezer and peel to add to a shake. This adds fruit and thickens at the same time)
3. Leftover Spaghetti
4. Balsamic Chicken + veggies
1. Egg sandwich
2. Apple and Almonds
3. Leftover balsamic chicken
4. 1/2 c. brown rice + 2 veggies
2. Small salad
3. Brown rice + veggies
4. Super Tender Beef + garlic quinoa
Beef - 1 c. water, 1/2 c. soy sauce, 2 T. brown sugar, 1/4 c. lemon juice, 2 T. Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 t. thyme, 2.5 lbs. chuck steak (frozen). Combine all ingredients except meat and pour into slow cooker. Place meat in sauce and cook on low for 12-24 hours. You will be able to pull meat apart with 2 forks.
1. Yogurt & fruit
2. Turkey wrap
3. Leftover beef w/ small baked potato
4. Lentil Stew
Lentil Stew - 1 c. dry lentils, 6 c. water, 1 beef bouillon, 2 T. soy sauce, 1 diced onion, 4 diced carrots, 2 diced celery stalks, 4 diced potatoes, 1/2 t. parsley, 3 T. flour, 2 T. butter. Rinse lentils. Add all of the ingredients except flour and butter to a large pot. Cook over medium heat for 30 minutes. In a small bowl, mix the flour and butter into a paste. Add 1/2 c. of broth to paste and whisk. Add paste to stew and stir constantly for 3-4 mins.
1. Whole wheat pancake topped w/ egg
2. Yogurt + fruit
3. Lentil stew
4. Mexican Dinner
Mexican dinner - 1 lb. browned ground beef, 1/4 c. flour, 1 t. chili powder, 1/3 c. diced onion, 4 cloves garlic, 1/2 t. salt, 1/2 c. water, 16 oz. refried beans, 10 flour tortillas, 1.5 c. salsa, 1 c. grated cheddar cheese. Place meat and flour, chili powder, onion, garlic, and salt in skillet. Add water and simmer for 10 mins. In a separate pan warm beans. Place about 3 T. beans and 3 T. meat on each tortilla. Fold and place seam down on microwave safe plate. Cover tortilla with salsa and cheese. Microwave about 45 seconds. These can be frozen without salsa and cheese. When you are ready to eat them microwave for 2 minutes then add salsa and cheese and microwave an additional 30 seconds. Let it stand for 1-2 minutes.