Thursday, September 9, 2010


After the rotten day we had yesterday, Beren and I decided to enjoy Happy Hour at a nearby chain restaurant where Kali's friend works. We go there on occasion as it's a cheap date for us and we get to visit with Dana.

Having had such a good day eating both Tuesday and Wednesday up to that point, I wanted to stay on program and figured I could have a little healthy appetizer with my moderate-glass-of-planned-for chardonnay. One look at the Flanigan's menu proved that to be a futile effort. Except for the mayonnaise-laden smoked fish dip or very expensive steamed shrimp, everything else was calorie-and-fat-laden deep fried cheese or animal products. Chicken Wings, Mozzarella Sticks, and Potato Skins are no longer on my eating plan, folks! Giving up on that idea, I looked toward the dinner part of the menu and decided to share a grilled mahi sandwich with Beren, naked baked potato on the side. When the waiter delivered our dish, Beren literally pushed it toward me because he couldn't stand the fishy smell! Not a good sign! I decided to be brave and take a bite, moved the meat off the bread, piled it high with the tomatoes, onion and lettuce, and cut a bite. Ugh! Not only was the fish tasteless, with no seasonings whatsoever, but it was quite obviously not fresh. At this moment I could hear Allan's words ringing in my head: "Don't Trust Restaurants. Ever." So I sent the fish back, ate the potato and finished my wine, frustrated but ever-so-glad that I didn't settle for putting that garbage into my body!

Our weekend travel plans have been canceled due to Beren's work schedule so I'll be home cooking for myself this weekend. I really don't mind, I could use another couple of days to recover from this nasty cold as well as the other dramas that have been swirling around lately.

I mixed up the menu a bit, already served the vegetarian chili on Tuesday, so tonight I'm going to do something with pasta..whole wheat, of course.

This Portobello Mushroom Ragu was originally posted in Clean Eating magazine, I found it at this lovely blog called A Fit and Spicy Life..don't you love that title?
Because I have a bag of fresh spinach about to wilt in my crisper drawer, I'm going to throw that in as well, adding some more veggies and healthy goodness!

Portobello Mushroom Ragu

-------- ------------ --------------------------------
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium red onion -- diced
2 cloves garlic -- minced
2 6 oz Portobello mushroom caps -- trimmed and diced
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
15 ounces canned diced tomatoes
Salt and Pepper
13 1/4 ounces whole wheat pasta

Heat olive oil in a large skillet and saute the onions until lightly browned, 3-4 minutes.

Add garlic and saute for 1 minute, stir in mushrooms and thyme. Continue to cook over high heat until the mushrooms have softened and given off their juice 2-3 minutes.

Add tomatoes and cook until the mixture is thick, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve over whole wheat pasta.

"Clean Eating Magazine"
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Serves 6. Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 301 Calories; 6g Fat (15.8% calories from fat); 12g Protein; 56g Carbohydrate; 8g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 250mg Sodium. Exchanges: 3 Grain(Starch); 1 Vegetable; 1 Fat.

NOTES : To clean portobello’s you can use a spoon to scoop out the insides before cleaning and chopping.

On the side there will of course be a big green salad and a glass of red wine..I can't wait!

Have a Beauty-Full Day,

P.S. For an occasional indulgence, Mad Men Style, I'll be looking to this blog for inspiration!


  1. After looking at the picture and reading the title I thought I was in for some really bad news. It appears the bad news was the fish. I have a cold right now too so I can't give you any sympathy for that one. My weekend plans were cancelled as well – I put a lot of hard work into preparation for it so I am a little angry. All in all it didn't seem as dreary to me as your picture and title suggested. I would even be willing to say that it was a good day because you fought off the food monsters successfully!!! ONWARD!!!

  2. Misunderstood, that is a good point! I guess I'm still a bit dreary thanks to my lingering cold as well as the crappy day we had yesterday. In addition to the robbery of two cars, my daughter was also in a minor accident. Nothing that money can't replace but becoming weary from the stress & strain.

    Hope you feel better & are able to make alternate weekend plans!

  3. Yeah - life can pile things on us - but we do have the strength within us to battle back!

  4. I'm not a huge fish fan a the best of times, so there is no way I would have eaten that either. I heard somewhere that really fresh fish hardly smells at all and that the smell develops as time goes on. A handy little freshness indicator :)

  5. Even though I'm sick in bed and the thought of food right now is not a good thing, you made me hungry!

  6. Ah garbage is everywhere at restauants. Daily specials, dessert menus are filled with them. Takes some stern will to say no to those temptations. Good for you in avoiding the garbage! Take care & kick that cold to the curb.

  7. Good for you for not eating the fish. I'm one of those people who can't get past the though "I paid for it, I have to eat it" and then I always regret it later.

    The pasta sounds dee-lish!

    Hope you feel better soon!

    -Lady Fromage

  8. Lady Fromage, oh, I didn't pay for it! They took it off my bill with apologies. :)

    Thank you, I'm slowly starting to feel better, yay!

  9. Thank you, Patrick! Kickin' away!

  10. Leah, it really was! There are no leftovers, a very good sign! ;)

  11. Mark, I think you're right - good, fresh fish should be nearly odorless. We live in Florida where fresh fish is plentiful, no reason to settle for anything less.

  12. Bipolar Diva, hope you're feeling better, hon! xoxoxo