Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Monday, September 19, 2011

Hot Dish: Coconut Curry Shrimp


I found this recipe in my weekly Weight Watchers newsletter, looked so delicious that I had to try it immediately. Well, I was not disappointed; this was amazing! Even Beren-the-Junk-Food-King enjoyed it, and that's saying something!

I have a cooking challenge I'd like to share with you all: since we're alone up here I'm usually cooking for just the two of us, no kids, and I'm finding it difficult. I'm not used to making such small portions and for the first couple of weeks I found myself with too many leftovers. Some of them could be frozen and I did so, but others, not so much. I hate wasting food (money) and the time it takes to prepare meals, so I'm finally learning to pare down the recipe so there's just enough for two. It sounds silly but as a mom of a large-ish family, this feels foreign to me! Well, I tried it for the first time last night on this recipe and must admit, it worked perfectly. No waste & no leftovers which means no temptation to grab seconds!

Does anyone else have this problem? Empty nesters or young couples struggling with this issue? I could use some tips & tricks!



Coconut Curry Shrimp
Weight Watchers Recipe

Course: main meals
PointsPlus® Value: 8
Servings: 4
Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 8 min
Level of Difficulty: Easy

A classic combination that’s easy to spice up or cool down. If you like a looser sauce, add 1/2 cup of water to the coconut milk.

Ingredients
2 spray(s) cooking spray
2 tsp olive oil
1 Tbsp curry powder, mild or hot, to taste
1/2 tsp table salt
3 medium scallion(s), thinly sliced, green and white parts separated
1/2 cup(s) light coconut milk
1 pound(s) shrimp, large, shelled and deveined
3 cup(s) cooked brown rice
Instructions

Coat a medium to large skillet with cooking spray; add oil and set over medium heat. When heated, add curry powder and salt; cook, stirring constantly, until curry is fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add white parts of scallions; cook, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes more. Add coconut milk; stir to blend. Add shrimp; cook, stirring occasionally, until shrimp turn pink, about 4 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with green parts of scallions; serve. Yields about 5 to 6 shrimp, 3/4 cup rice and 1 to 2 tablespoons sauce per serving.

Notes:

Add cilantro, hot peppers or tomatoes for a completely different twist.
Serve this recipe with fresh pineapple, mango or papaya to cut the spice (will affect PointsPlus values).



Beren's car broke down (again) yesterday so he took mine to work. This means I will be housebound for most of the day. Not a problem, there's more than enough to keep me busy around here. I'm hoping the weather cooperates and I can take Loki for a little walk, then perhaps I'll do some research on Cooking for Two.

Have a Beauty-Full Day,

Time for Change




Those of you who read my other blog know that Beren and I are out of town for an extended period of time. While Beren spends most of the weekdays, and some weekends, working, I putter around the house, shop, do crafts, read, basically whatever the heck I want to do. It's really lovely, having all of this time to myself. But having so many hours in the day to spend on just me, I have absolutely no excuse for not taking care of myself, for not exercising, for not cooking and eating properly, for not staying on my eating plan. I've decided to take this opportunity and use it for some serious self-improvement, some extreme self-care. I've been taking my vitamins, applying my moisturizers, deep conditioning my hair, expanding my mind while exploring the city...all wonderful, positive things. But I have not been exercising enough, or eating even 50% On Program. So it should be no surprise to me that my jeans are a little bit tighter, that I'm not as happy with what I see in the mirror, or in photos...



So today I got up and logged on to Weight Watchers, found a local center and attended a meeting. I bought the Monthly Pass, a program which is not available down south. Weigh-in wasn't pleasant but it wasn't a complete shock either: 166.4. I have gained back 10 of the 20 pounds I lost last year. Rather than beat myself up over it, though, I took a deep breath, smiled and re-committed to this weight loss journey.



Interestingly enough, today's meeting topic was about time management. And, coincidentally, most of the other attendees (older retired folks) are in the same boat as myself; they have plenty of time to take care of themselves. No children or jobs to use as reasons/excuses. Our leader Barbara talked to us about that, asking what, other than lack of time, prevents us from doing what we know we have to do to achieve success. For me it's a combination of laziness and a little bit of anxiety that leads to overeating. Being up here, while a luxury, is also taking me away from some of the things I love at home: my kids, my cats, my house, my friends. Even, though I can't say I really miss it, my job. I'm sorting through these emotions, coming to terms with the touch of homesickness, learning to detach from my grown daughters just a bit in order to create healthier (less dependent) relationships. Now I just need to add the next component: finding other ways to deal with the emotions other than stuffing them down with food. Smarter choices would be:

* Taking Loki for a neighborhood walk
* Taking myself for a long stroll on the beach
* Exploring, by foot, the museums and local attractions nearby
* Visiting the health food store and farmers market for fresh fruit & veggies
* Distracting myself and/or talking myself through the anxious, sad times
* Sharing my feelings with Beren and asking for his support, and not in the form of a fried mozzarella stick *grin*


Do you all have any other suggestions? Thoughts?

I'm going to read through my WW pamphlets as if I'm a new member, starting fresh for the first time, then plan a new recipe for dinner. I'm looking forward to hearing from you all..

Have a Beauty-Full Day,

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Sorry I Haven't Written


Dear Readers,

I hope a few of you are still hanging in there with me despite my absence. I've been busy lately pursuing other interests and starting new adventures, but never fear, I haven't forgotten my friends here nor my pin-up pursuit!

If you're curious, please take a peek at my other blog for updates on my life in general, and I promise to be back very soon with a fresh new blog post!

In the meantime, have a beauty-full day!