Thursday, October 28, 2010

Halloween Whole Wheat Spice Cookies

With Halloween around the corner this is a yummy healthy recipe for the kids.   I did not make these.  This recipe is from my very good friend!  Thank you for letting me share!
Just look how gorgeous they are!  And so very tasty!

Whole wheat spice cookies with apple and cinnamon icing

1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine/butter
1 tbsp water
2 tsp vanilla
1 egg
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch salt
1/4 tsp cloves
1/2 cup ground sunflower seeds (calls for nuts, but this is nut free for school)

Beat together sugar and margarine/butter.  Add water, vanilla and egg, beat well.
Mix together dry ingredients, and add to wet.  Don't over mix.  Divide into 4 balls, cover and place in fridge for 45 minutes.  Can wrap in wax paper and leave for a couple of days at this point.  Preheat oven to 375F.  Roll out balls, and cut with cookie cutters of choice (we chose halloweeen theme, but this is a good holiday one too).  Place on sheet, and bake for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned.  Let cool a couple of minutes, then transfer to wire rack.  Prepare icing in the mean time.

3 large dried prunes (could use figs)
1/4 cup boiled water
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup powder sugar
1/4 cup apple juice (to the consistency you like)

Place prunes in small bowl, and cover with boiled water.  Steep for 20 minutes.  In a blender or mini food processor.  Process the prunes and water, then add brown sugar and spices, till smooth.  Mix powdered sugar in 1/2 cup at a time.  Then add enough apple juice to your liking.  Spread onto cooled cookies and top with sprinkles (if you like them).  Hopefully a little healthier than royal icing!

Sharing with 

Fight Back Friday at The Food Renegade 

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Watch My Weight Wednesday!

Last week I told you all that we purchased a treadmill. I have been researching on how to get the most out of my treadmill and have found these tips!

Treadmill Exercises for Beginners
I wanted to know how do I use a treadmill to lose weight?  This is what I found!

For beginners you should do about 15-20 minutes of cardio everyday. Here are a few treadmill exercises to start off with.

Set a pace which you feel comfortable walking for up to 20 minutes. You could start with a speed of 5 km/hr and if you feel that the workout is too slow for you, you could yank it up to 6.5 km/hr. Walking is a simple exercise for you and it is better you start your workout with this if you have never played any sports. It is also a good warm-up.

Start your workout with a brisk jog at 10 km/hr. And depending on whether you are comfortable or not, you can increase or decrease the speed of the treadmill at which you're running. Ideally you should maintain a steady pace throughout so select a speed which you are comfortable with. Don't overdo it as it may cause injury. Reduce the speed for the last 4-5 minutes so that you can cool down.

Using the Incline
To increase the intensity of the workout, the treadmill offers the incline function. When you use the incline, the treadmill automatically lifts itself up and gives you the feeling of walking uphill. Walking uphill is obviously tougher than walking on a flat surface so it burns more calories!

Interval Workout
Some treadmills come with an interval workout. An interval workout is a preset function on the treadmill which does all the changes in the incline, and leaves you to adjust the speed. The interval workout intermediately increases the incline of the treadmill to give you a more challenging workout.

Tips to consider while using a treadmill
  • Don't run too close to the control panel of a treadmill, you may hold your arms too high, causing your neck and shoulders to get sore. --  Instead, position yourself in the middle of the treadmill band and you will be less likely to have aches afterwards.
  • Leading with and landing on your heel can do damage to your knees.  Try to land on the middle of your feet and roll onto the balls of them. It will be easier on your knees and, perhaps just as importantly, you will feel like your walk is easier on your body as a whole, making you more likely to keep it up.
  • Move your arms back and forwards rather than across your body and make a point to keep the motion fluid. Once you get the hang of it, it will actually improve your coordination and keep you balanced. Hold your arms at a 90-degree angle and keep your hands around hip level.
  • Looking up at the ceiling, an overhead poster or a mounted television may cause you to tip your torso back and puts pressure on your hips. That makes it even harder to take a step forward with every stride. Try to always look straight ahead to keep yourself from leaning back.
  • You should never actually slouch walking indoors or out, of course, but leaning slightly toward the control panel (from your ankles, not your torso) will create a shift in gravity that helps propel you without any additional effort. (Basically, you can walk faster without putting more energy into it.)


This is a blog hop! Post your recipes, tips, and your weight loss stories! It can be a new post or an older one that you would like to share.

Would you like to be a guest blogger? Send me an email!

Add your old or new post below with Linky! I can't wait to see all the helpful tips/recipes/stories you have!
Please link directly to your post and not your blog URL. If you could please link back here, so that everyone can join in the fun!

    Monday, October 25, 2010

    Butternut Squash Soup

    Butternut Squash Soup

    • 1 small Butternut Squash
    • a little Butter
    • 1/2 Onion, chopped
    • 1 cup Chicken Stock
    • 2 tbls Cream (or milk)
    • 1/2 tbls Real Maple Syrup
    • Water, as needed
    • Pinch Freshly Ground Nutmeg
    • Ground Black Pepper, to taste


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    2. Cut squash in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds.
    3. Arrange the halves cut side down on an oiled baking sheet.
    4. Bake for about 40-45 minutes or until fork tender. Set aside to cool.
    5. Melt butter in large pot over medium heat.
    6. Saute onion in the butter.
    7. Add stock, and cream.
    8. Scoop the squash flesh from the skin using a spoon.
    9. Add the flesh to the pot and maple syrup.
    10. Simmer for about 10 minutes.
    11. Food process until smooth.
    12. Add water to desired consistency.
    13. Return to heat.
    14. Add nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Serve hot.

    Wednesday, October 20, 2010

    Watch My Weight Wednesday! Yummy foods that help promote weight loss!

    Hello Everyone!  I have news!  We invested in a treadmill!  So now I can run in the comforts of my home.
    My new goal is to get on it everyday.  I am open to any tips you may have about running on a treadmill.

    Here is a list of yummy foods that help promote weight loss!

    Tomatoes: very low in calories, source of vitamin A, C and antioxidants. Use cooked and raw. Try halved tomatoes sprinkled with parmesan cheese and broiled until cheese melts.

    Green tea: metabolism booster, rich in antioxidants. Try iced or hot. Green tea can be mixed with black tea if you don’t care for the taste. Add a sprig of mint or lemon for variety.

    Broccoli: high in fiber, folate vitamins A and C, low in calories. Stir fry broccoli with garlic and scallions with a splash of soy sauce for an oriental treat.

    Apples: An apple before each meal helps you lose weight. High in pectin and fiber so you feel full longer. Bake apples with the center filled with walnuts and a sprinkle of brown sugar.

    Spinach: High in antioxidants, vitamins A, K, B and C. Dress a raw spinach salad with olive oil and vinegar dressing. Add a sliced hard boiled egg and you almost have a perfect meal.

    Walnuts: source of protein, healthy fat and fiber. Add chopped walnuts to yogurt to boost the protein and add some fiber. Or to cooked brown rice for a bit of crunch. Other nuts to try include almonds and hazelnuts.

    Oats: the long cooking kind takes only 5 minutes and is a better source of fiber than quick cooking. Oats have been shown to decrease cholesterol. Oats are not just for breakfast add them to meatloaf or meat balls for extra fiber.

    Blueberries: the miracle berry, full of vitamins and antioxidants. Blueberries in a salad are an extra treat. Add a handful of blueberries in the blender with a fruit smoothie.

    Garlic: great for cooking and for your health. Reduces cholesterol and blood pressure. Garlic mellows considerably when cooked. Throw several cloves into the water when you’re making pasta then smash and add to the sauce.

    This is a blog hop! Post your recipes, tips, and your weight loss stories! It can be a new post or an older one that you would like to share.

    Would you like to be a guest blogger? Send me an email!

    Add your old or new post below with Linky! I can't wait to see all the helpful tips/recipes/stories you have!
    Please link directly to your post and not your blog URL. If you could please link back here, so that everyone can join in the fun!

    Sunday, October 17, 2010

    Spaghetti Squash with Onions and Garlic

    I love squash! Spaghetti Squash is fun and you can put almost any regular spaghetti topping on it! I love this recipe cause its is so easy and tasty. The kids and I like to put a little parmesan cheese on top

    Spaghetti Squash with Onions and Garlic

    • 1 Spaghetti Squash
    • 2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
    • 1 Onion, thinly sliced
    • 4 cloves of Garlic, minced
    • Pepper to taste 
    • Parmesan Cheese to taste(optional)
    1. Cut the spaghetti squash in half and remove seeds and membranes.
    2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
    3. Place squash on baking dish and add 1 Tablespoon olive oil, half of the onion slices, and half of the garlic to each squash half.
    4. Sprinkle with a little pepper.
    5. Place in deep pan and add enough water to just cover the bottom of pan
    6. Cover pan with a lid or aluminum foil.
    7. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes until the skin gives easily under pressure (using an oven mitt) and the inside is tender.
    8. Use a fork to pull out the spaghetti-like strands, onions, and garlic from the inside of the squash.
    9. Toss and Serve.
    Serves 4-6

    Saturday, October 16, 2010

    Slow Cooker Saturday! Chicken Mole!

    So it is Slow Cooker Saturday and I am making Chicken Mole(pronounced MOL-ay).  It is simmering away in my crock as we speak I type!  I have never ever had chicken mole.  But I have read about it and have always been very curious as to how it would taste.  I love chocolate and I like chicken so why not?  This week at the grocery store I noticed a jar of mole sauce on the bottom of the shelf tucked away in the corner.  Normally I like to make my own sauce,  But mole sauce has a ton of ingredients, I guess that is is why I never made it before.  I think the selling point on this jar of mole sauce was 1. The ingredients for the most part they are all "real" 2. The jar it self! It can be used as a drinking glass! 3. I have always wanted to taste mole sauce!  So here I am making Chicken Mole for dinner!  I will post pics and let you know how I like it after I try it!

    Chicken Mole
    • Chicken
    • Jar of Mole sauce
    • Chicken Broth

    Turn the crock pot on high, and Jar of sauce and 4 parts broth as per instructions on jar.  Stir until blended(I actually for got to do this part.  oops!) This might be faster in  a sauce pan on the stove depending on how fast your crock heats up.
    Add the chicken breasts and immediately turn down to low. Cook for 6 hours.
    To serve, remove the chicken from the crock pot, shred with a fork, and put back into the sauce. Serve with warm tortillas, or with rice.

    This was so yummy!  I was a little worried about how it would taste while it was cooking, but was very surprised at how well it turned out!  I rolled the chicken mole in ww tortilla and added more sauce on top.  We dressed it up with chopped tomato, swiss cheese(that is what I had in the fridge), and some avocado.  I will definitely make this again.  The whole family enjoyed it!

    To find some more great Slow Cooker Recipes Go visit here!

    So I have some questions for my readers.
    Have you tried Mole before?  How do you like to serve it?  Should I put anything extra into the crock with it?

    Friday, October 15, 2010

    Potato Chowder Recipe

    Tonight I felt like comfort food!  This is pure comfort!  So creamy and tasty.  Perfect for a crisp autumn day.
    Potato Chowder


    • 2 bacon strips, diced
    • 1 onion, diced
    • 2 medium red potatoes,diced
    • 1 carrot, diced
    • 2 cups vegetable broth
    • 2 cups heavy cream (or use milk if watching your weight)
    • 1 1/2 cup frozen corn
    • Dash of pepper
    • 2-1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
    • 2 tablespoons cold water
    • 1 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese


    1. In a large saucepan, cook bacon over medium heat until crisp; remove to paper towels. Drain, reserving 1 teaspoon drippings. 
    2. In the drippings, saute onion until tender. 
    3. Add the potato, carrot, broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the vegetables are almost tender.
    4. Stir in the cream, corn and pepper. Cook 5 minutes longer. 
    5. Combine the flour and cold water until smooth; gradually whisk into soup. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 1-2 minutes or until thickened. 
    6. Remove from the heat; stir in cheese until melted. Sprinkle with bacon.

    Wednesday, October 6, 2010

    Watch My Weight Wednesday!

    Get Inspired to Get Fit!

    Do you need some extra inspiration?  I found this article of 58 women's weight loss stories!

    This is a blog hop! Post your recipes, tips, and your weight loss stories! It can be a new post or an older one that you would like to share.

    Would you like to be a guest blogger? Send me an email!

    Add your old or new post below with Linky! I can't wait to see all the helpful tips/recipes/stories you have!
    Please link directly to your post and not your blog URL. If you could please link back here, so that everyone can join in the fun!

    Saturday, October 2, 2010

    Slow Cooker Saturday: Chicken Broth

    Slow Cooker Chicken Broth does take some time but tastes so great!   And it is so easy too!

    1. After you have a nice dinner of roast chicken, remove meat from carcass. 
    2. Put the carcass into a large crock pot and fill with water.  Simmer overnight on low.  You can throw in any veggies in to flavor the broth...celery, onion, carrot, etc.
    3. In the morning strain broth and pull any meat off the bones to put in your soup and discard soggy veggies. 
    4. Put broth in the fridge,  when it cools you can skim off the fat.
    5. Now it is ready to use in your soup recipe!
    Do you have a great slow cooker recipe?  Come join the fun and link up to Slow Cooker Saturdays!

    Friday, October 1, 2010

    Chunky Apple & Banana Oatmeal Muffins

    Another sweetened apple sauce recipe. If you read yesterdays post you would learn that I bought this apple sauce by mistake.  You may want to add a little sweetener(honey?) if you make this recipe if using regular apple sauce.  I made these for my daughter feild trip but forgot to snap a pic before I sent them away. So no pic as they were such a great hit none were brought back home from my daughters group. 

    Chunky Apple & Banana Oatmeal Muffins

    • 1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
    • 1 1/4 cups oats
    • 1 tsp baking powder
    • 1/2 tsp baking soda
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1 cup applesauce
    • 1/2 cup milk
    • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
    • 1 lg banana diced
    • 2 apples diced
    Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
    Grease a 12 cup muffin tin.
    In a large bowl combine flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon.
    In a medium bowl combine applesauce, milk, and egg.
    Make a well in dry ingredients and add applesauce mixture.
    Stir until just moist. Fold in bananas and apples.
    Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.
    Bake for 30 minutes.