Sunday, January 8, 2012

First Post of the Year

I don't really have many New Year's resolutions that are too out of the ordinary. Of course I do have a little weight I need to drop from the holidays and a lingering 15 pounds that have crept up on me since turning 30. What is it about that? Anyway, I'm not going to stress about it because I know it will just require watching my diet a little more closely and going to the gym a litte more regularly. My goal for the gym is to go at least 3-4 times per week. That is totally doable. My other major goal is to make peace with myself. Last year, I attempted to just be content with where I was at in life. Finding content was a little more challenging than what I thought, but eventually just turned into laziness which later fuzed some major anxiety and frustration. So, this year, peace. Just saying the word peace calms me instantly. I like this goal.

Amongst goals and resolutions, I want to help people more. This not only will help bring peace to my life, but also help others to feel good. One thing people generally as me for help with is their health and diet. So, I'd like to try something. I will post my weekly menu and attempt to include pictures and recipes throughout the week. If you read my blog, just leave me a little comment if you try something, like it, feel it needs improvement, or whatever. While I do enjoy gourmet cooking, I really try to keep things very simple. I am afterall, trying to obtain peace:)

So, here is this week's menu. We are a household of two, so feel free to double any recipes if need be or make additions to your menu as you see fit. This week's menu is a cozy combination of winter comforts bulked up with extra fiber, protein, and veggies.

Sunday 1/8/2012 Provencal Beef Slow Cooker Stew (adapted from with Gluten Free Baguette

Monday 1/9/2012 Left-overs

Tuesday 1/10/2012 Veggie Chili Wraps with Veggie Sticks and Dip

Wednesday 1/11/2012 Left-overs

Thursday 1/12/2012 Bacon, Onion, & Mushroom Pizza with Salad

Friday 1/13/2012 or Saturday 1/14/2012 Spicy Chicken Sausage Ragu over Polenta

Keeping with somewhat of a French theme this week, I also prepared a week's worth of lunches for myself using a simple French Potato Salad recipe inspired by an old Weight Watcher's recipe I had always wanted to try.

French Potato Salad

1 pound poached boneless, skinless chicken breast (see method below)
1 roughly chopped onion
2 roughly chopped carrots
2 roughly chopped stalks of celery
1 clove garlic
1 bay leaf
Water (enough to cover your veggies and chicken for poaching)
Cooking spray ( I prefer canola oil spray)
1 pound quartered red skinned potatoes
1/2 bag frozen green beans
1 cup sliced seedless red grapes
2 medium celery stalks, thinnly sliced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup organic, reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon tarragon leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

I simply poached one pound of boneless skinless chicken breast for 45 minutes in a large pot of water with one garlic clove, one onion, two roughly chopped carrots, two stalks roughly chopped celery, and one bay leaf. Simply put all ingredients into a large stockpot, cover with water, and bring to a gentle boil. After the chicken mixture comes to a boil, lower your heat to low and simmer for 45 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon into a bowl. You can either chop or shred your chicken. I prefer to shred my chicken using two forks and pulling the chicken into shreds.

While the chicken was poaching, I roasted one pound of quartered red skinned potatoes and one half of a bag of frozen green beans on a large cookie sheet sprayed with non-stick spray in the oven at 350 degrees until the potatoes were golden brown (about 45 minutes). To crisp the potatoes slightly, I sprayed them with a light coating of canola oil, salt, and pepper. Cool for 5-10 minutes.

Next, add your chicken, potatoes, green beans, grapes, and celery to a large mixing bowl. In another smaller bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, broth, tarragon, salt, pepper, Dijon mustard and olive oil together until combined. Poor the dressing over the salad and mix until the salad is evenly coated. Finally, I portioned the salad into six Ziplock containers so my lunches would be ready for the week.

Tomorrow's recipe- Provencal Beef Stew. Enjoy!

No comments:

Post a Comment