Thursday, January 31, 2008

You Say Tomato, I Say Tomatah

Yesterday was grocery shopping day, and in preparation, I sat down in front of several websites and printed out a veritable ream of recipes. I don't cook every night, usually just 2-3 times a week, so I had to limit my recipes to a handful of 6, plus some recipes for snacks and breakfasts.

Last night, I made a SparkPeople recipe: 15 minute chili. For a quick dish, it was really good, and incredibly filling. I cut the recipe in half from 4 servings to 2, and it made THREE HUGE servings, plenty for dinner for two plus someone's lunch for the next day (guess whose!). I was going to post a picture, but I left my camera at home (my own computer is completely malfunctional...the memorial service for my hard drive will be announced at a later date...), so maybe I'll get that up later. I'm working towards more than words, here, as I rarely make a recipe that doesn't have a picture.

For those of you who might want to make it, here's the recipe:
1 lb lean ground turkey
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 16-oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 16-oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 28-oz can chopped, stewed tomatoes
1 tablespoon chili powder
1/2 cup salsa

1. In a large pot, brown turkey with chopped onion.
2. Add beans, tomatoes, chili powder, and salsa to turkey mixture. Cook until hot.

That's it! So easy, quick, and it uses only one dish, which is my favorite part of it all. I added a stick or two to celery to the first step (chopped up) just for an added veggie. It was a nice different texture for the chili, too. The recipe says that this makes 4 servings, but I cut the recipe in half, and had PLENTY for three full servings. After I halved it, my calculations from the labels was just under 8 points per serving. Not bad for such a filling meal. You might want to double-check your own points, though, just to make sure I can do math (which is a highly contestable assumption!). If you come up with a radically different number, PLEASE let me know.

I also made a really quick trail mix. I found a recipe for a 2-point version on Hungry-Girl, but once I got in the store, I realized that the core ingredients were actually dried toddler foods. Yuck. So I ran back to the dried fruits and nuts section, and picked several things up there. I mixed the original serving sizes of soy nuts, raisins, pretzels, maple-brown sugar frosted mini-wheats, and banana chips, and a double-portion of dried apricots in a mixing bowl and then divided it into thirds to make three 5-point baggies. (I was actually so anal as to divide each ingredient's portion into thirds, and then add each ingredient to a baggie, just to make sure I was counting the points right). I made a couple of batches, and now I've got about 9, super-quick, relatively low-point breakfasts or snacks ready in the wings. What I love about the trail mix idea is that you can add whatever you want--popcorn, sugar-free candies, etc--and make as high or as low point bag as you want. I'm going to try again with the ingredients in a few weeks and see if I can get a lower point batch; the banana chips really upped the points for how many I get to eat (but I LOVE banana chips!!!).

Hope everything is going well with you all today!


Anonymous said...

I love this 'baggies' idea...I need to do more stuff like that so that I have pre-pointed snacks at the ready. Great idea! I may just try the chilli too!