April 6, 2014

House Baked Corn Bread Recipe from Union Oyster House

The Union Oyster House is the oldest restaurant in Boston and the oldest restaurant in continuous service in the U.S. — the doors have always been open to diners since 1826. And their corn bread has consistently considered the best in Boston through the years.
6-oz Butter (1-1/2 sticks softened)  
2-T Baking Powder
2-t Salt
3 Large Eggs
½ -cup Vegetable Oil
1-cup Corn Meal
2-cups Milk
3-1/4- cups Flour
1 drop yellow food coloring (optional)

Cream butter, sugar, salt, and baking powder. Add eggs, cream until light and fluffy. Pour in oil, corn meal and mix. Add flour mix. Add milk slowly while stirring. Mix until smooth, about 1 minute. Pour into greased and floured 8 x 10 pan. Bake at 350 for 45 to 55 minutes.  Use the toothpick method to test for doneness.  Stick a toothpick into the center of the corn bread, if it comes out clean, it's done,    Serves 4
Cornbread is best when baked in a Cast Iron Skillet to give it a crunchy crust. This 5" square pan is perfect for me.  I get the highest ratio of crunchy crust to cake. (And if  I used a larger pan, I would end up eating more.)

You can find this pan here.

September 3, 2013

You Can Pickle That: The Basics on How to Pickle

You Can Pickle That: The Basics on How to Pickle

Spring is here and soon we'll be aplenty in fresh vegetables and fruits. Local Produce and Farmers' Markets are opening so when you when you find a bargain, get the most bang for your buck and buy in bulk. Don't let this bounty got to waste. Pickle it. Pickling and canning are the easiest ways to capture summer’s best—and there’s no time like the present to stock up  and start jarring. Mimi Graney, cofounder of Somerville’s urban-agriculture center Relish, shares her tips for preserving the rest of the season.  Read more..

March 27, 2013

Zero Calorie Food Art

My friend Stephanie Tsalagas' colorful fruit still life
was the inspiration for my lunch today.  Yep, you guessed it, a big bowl of .........wait for it..........Fruit Salad!! I just hope it's as delicious as her painting looks.  I just want to eat it up!

Perfect repast to celebrate the end of the never ending winter we've had. I know you guys don't need a recipe for this. But I'll throw it in anyhow. Enjoy.

Watermelon Salad with Feta and Mint
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • One 8-pound seedless watermelon, scooped into balls with a melon baller or cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks (10 cups), chilled
  • 1/2 pound feta cheese, crumbled (2 cups)
  • 1 1/4 cups pitted kalamata olives, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • 1 small sweet onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped mint leaves

  • In a large bowl, whisk the oil, lemon juice, salt, Tabasco and pepper. Add the watermelon, feta, olives and onion and toss gently. Garnish with the mint and serve.  I don't like olives so I left them out.

February 16, 2013

Chicken Breast for Soup, Salad or Grilling: A Diet Staple

When chicken breasts are on sale, I usually stock up.  I buy 2 or 3 family packs, take them home, and spend an hour or so portioning them. Believe, me, this saves loads of time later. I clean any extra fat off them, split them in half lengthwise, butterfly style, and each half is a portion.  I can weigh it before cooking if needed. Each half fits perfectly into a snack baggie which I then put into a freezer bag and freeze it. I freeze some of the breasts raw with different lowfat marinades, some I freeze plain and some I cook and freeze. I grill them off in my grill pan (George Foreman type grills will work too) with a little salt and pepper. If time allows, I slice them into bite size pieces and weigh the pieces before bagging them. This way I can grab one on the way to work for salads.  so I can pull out one at a time before work to defrost for dinner when I come home or to grab one to bring to work. 

February 12, 2013

Diet Saboteurs - How to Get Support from Your Partner

Great article on Fitnessmagazine.com 

Sure, she looks sweet, but that cookie monster is up to no good. Here's how to cope when friends and loved ones sabotage your weight-loss success.  

Before Allison Orphy, 27, of Iowa, Louisiana, dines out with friends, she checks the restaurant's calorie counts online. She used to look them up at the table, but it drove her pals crazy. It wasn't the phone use that offended them; it was what she was doing. "They'd say, 'Why can't you just order?'" says Orphy, who has dropped 55 pounds in the past two years and wants to lose 60 more. "Most of them think I'm miserable, because I ask for veggies with no butter." But Orphy has quietly persisted, and now her friends are more accepting of her lifestyle change. "Sometimes, one of them will even wave away the breadbasket," she says.
Diet experts say it's not unusual for the people whom you think would support you the most -- BFFs, family members, significant others -- to try to derail your weight-loss goals, especially when you first make changes. You, only thinner, may intimidate them, says psychologist Judith Beck, PhD, president of the Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior Therapy in Philadelphia, and author of The Beck Diet Solution. "They may be scared that you won't need them in your life after you drop a dress size." But you don't have to end a relationship to stay on your diet. Understand why people tempt you with diet-breaking treats, and then use these strategies to clear the air and stay on track. Read More......

Creamy White Bean Dip

Great Dip for veggies or Makes a great hot side dish


1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. sage
1 tsp. salt
1 T olive oil
1 clove Garlic, minced
1 tsp water
1 can cannelini beans, drained and rinsed


Add all ingredients to food processor and process until smooth. If needed, add water by the teaspoon to thin to the desired consistency. Serve with veggies or whole wheat pita chips.

January 31, 2013

Holy Broccamole Dip

Countdown to the Superbowl folks and since the game falls one day before our final weigh-out, we'll need to have a strategy to make it through this historically diet unfriendly day. I'll try to post a few Superbowl Snack alternatives before the big day, first one being this recipe for I Can't Believe it's Not Guacamole Broccamole. This recipe courtesy of Sunset Magazine.


1 pound broccoli florets (from about 2 small heads)1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil1/4 cup lime juice1/3 cup chopped cilantro leaves1/3 cup diced red onion1/3 cup diced seeded tomato2 serrano chiles, minced (seed if very hot)3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook florets until crisp-tender, 5 minutes, then scoop into a large bowl of ice water to cool. Drain florets, then squeeze out as much water as possible with your hands.

Pulse broccoli in a food processor until finely chopped, then turn into a strainer and drain any liquid. Put in a medium bowl and stir in remaining ingredients. Season with more salt to taste. 

January 27, 2013

Day 21 of HM DietBet - Beware of Miracle Diet Products

Go team!!!  We're down a collective total of 139.1 pounds. Hard to imagine we've lost enough for a whole person. And from your recent status updates, we're doing it by eating healthy and staying active. Makes me wonder about those who are not posting. What are they up to? Hmmmmm?? I'm happy to say I haven't heard anyone commenting on any of the hundreds of "Miracle" or Revolutionary" diet schemes or products. We all have had our experiences with these products, "methods" and "systems" and know that they do not work. Healthy eating and excersize works and it is work. If something claims to be an effortless solution for losing weight . Beware!! Due to the cruel laws of physics, losing weight requires two things: 

This is a process your body invented to keep you alive, over centuries of living in a world that did not have fast food or Hostess snack cakes. Any time you try to stop or undo that process, your body will send unpleasant sensations to your brain, because it thinks you're setting youself up to starve to death.
PAIN and Hunger
This is due to a few fairly simple facts about your body. Your body wants to store fat, because through most of human history, food was scarce and in times of plenty it wants to store up for when supplies are short.
To lose weight, you must endure those unpleasant sensations. There is no shortcut.
For instance, you can exercise to the point that your body will run out of the ready fuel in your system, at which point it will reluctantly dip into its fat reserves and burn them. You will experience fatigue and pain when this happens. This is your body punishing you for using the fat it has stored up. It doesn't want to use it. Your body was saving it for an emergency.
You can also restrict the amount of food coming into your system so that your body is forced to go through that same fat-burning process, but this time your body will punish you by making you feel hunger, or cravings for fattier foods that will let it replenish those fat reserves on your thighs and belly and everywhere else.
Any pill or cream that claims it can "burn fat" while you sit on the sofa, or exercise machine that claims to make exercise "easy" or "effortless" is a scam to steal your money.