Coz’s Corner: A New Year

The time has come yet again. A New Year and another chance for a New You! Easier said than done that’s for sure.

Coz's Corner

With the new year, I decided to start guest blogging as Coz’s Corner. Over a year of writings from my partner in crime, I thought it was time for all her Reluctant Weight Watcher Foodie fans to read things from my side of the dinner table! You can expect to see fun facts, behind the scenes, and my thoughts on my own weight loss journey.

Just a few weeks before the New Year, I started working out to Leslie Sansone’s “Walk Away the Pounds” DVD. You know, that really old DVD that was made in the 90’s. Believe it or not, it works! The only challenge in my head is getting my butt out of bed to do it! However, naturally I have an advantage most people don’t; I’m an early bird. Studies show that working out before the day begins is the best way but honestly as long as you Get Up and Get Out, you’re doing good! Its a daily battle that must by won in our own heads. No one can make us exercise or diet for that matter.

My own weight loss journey started at the same time Angela’s did. In fact, I was the one that talked to her about joining WW at Work back in 2010. Here we are at 2013 and I’ll tell you what I’ve learned in a bullet point list that I will go into more detail throughout the year.

1) Be realistic. Don’t set your weight loss goals too high.
2) Don’t compare your weight loss journey to other people including family members, co-workers or friends.
3) Challenge yourself (its really all mind over matter!)
4) Be willing to do some self-reflection because without it, the journey wouldn’t even exist.
5) Know your weaknesses and your strengths whether food or work-out related.
6) Accept change, it is the only constant in our lives anyway.
7) Recognize the negativity in your life and develop a plan to overcome or fix it.
8) Let go and realize that our society’s expectation/images of what “healthy” looks like is not practical.
9) Remember to always give yourself credit and treat yourself wisely.
10) Love the journey, not just the result.

These are just a few things my own journey has taught me. I look forward to sharing more of my thoughts and wisdom for the next year! Angela and I have some great ideas stored up for the new year including more guest blogs, more delicious healthy recipes, more fan participation (talk about it, its the best way to make yourself accountable) and everyone’s favorite RWWF Love and Gratitude boxes. We hope to partner with even more companies so we can share MORE OF THE LOVE with our fans! We encourage you to share our blog with friends, family or neighbors.

Facebook Savvy? Yeah, we are there too so go check us out!

Balsamic Beef and Veggie Soup

beef stew, balsamic, soup, dinner

Yummy yummy in my tummy!

You can tell it’s the winter season when the majority of my recipes are soups, stews or chili. Here’s more proof that it’s cold outside! Although not today… it’s a freaky 65 degrees, which Maxwell and I enjoyed with a long walk outside. But that’s beside the point; I still made some damn soup.

This one was thrown together when I went home during a lunch hour to check on our sick little poochie. I peeled/cut everything, threw it in the crockpot and came home to fantastical smells permeating from our apartment. If you follow these simple steps, you too shall experience such fantastical smells permeating from YOUR home. Ridiculously awesome, right?

Balsamic Beef and Veggie Soup
Servings: 4 (2 cups each)
PointsPlus Per Serving: 8 (or 4 PP per 1 cup)

Ingredients

  • 9.5 oz lean and trimmed steak, 12 PP
  • 5 oz frozen green beans
  • 4 cloves garlic, sliced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 3 medium red potatoes, diced, 12 PP
  • 3/4 cup sliced carrots
  • 4 cups hot water
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste, 1 PP
  • 3 tsp Better Than Bouillon beef base, 1 PP
  • 5 tsbp balsamic vinegar, 2 PP
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp black pepper

Directions
1. Chop up all those veggies and the meat and throw in into the crockpot. Then mix the tomato paste and bouillon base into the water and pour over the veggies. Pour in the balsamic vinegar and the rest of the spices. Cook on low for six hours and enjoy!

Yep, that’s the beauty of a crockpot.  No worries, just dinner!

Pork Enchilada Soup

Click here for this Chicken Tortilla Soup recipe from the “Cooking Classy” blog!

Thanksgiving weekend is upon us and I DID promise this recipe to a few of my facebook followers, so here you go! You can be thankful that I got it up amongst my busy days :)

This is a soup that is very easily thrown together and very easily modified to your own tastes. I prefer green enchilada sauce, but I’m sure that red enchilada sauce would work as well. This is also amazing as leftovers! I just top it off with some tortilla strips and I’m in heaven. I’ve made it with chicken before, but I think there’s something extra special about the pork flavor in here, so try it with the pork first if you can. And at 6 points per serving (and they are quite large servings; almost 2 cups worth!) this is definitely a soup you can enjoy as a dieter!

FYI, I recently downloaded a great app to my iPad called My Recipe Book. It lets you import recipes directly to your iPad! You can either import them from typical websites like AllRecipes or Epicurious, or you can “custom import” recipes from ANY website, including blogs! I started importing some of my own recipes using the app and I found that when I had the little dashes in front of my individual ingredients, it messed up the import and I needed to manually remove them. In order to make it easier for you all to import my recipes when using this app or similar ones, I’ll be going through all my recipes and removing the dashes from in front of the ingredients. Apps are about convenience, so I’d might as well do my part to make getting my recipes through this app TRULY convenient! You should all check it out. I love it!

Click here for this Chicken Enchilada Soup recipe from “The Family Kitchen”!

Pork Enchilada Soup
Servings: 6
PointsPlus Per Serving: 6

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, 4 PP
  • 8 oz raw pork loin, cut into bite sized chunks 8 PP
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp ancho chili powder or regular chili powder (optional)
  • 1 tbsp hot chili pepper, minced
  • 4 cups fat-free chicken broth, 1 PP
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 pouch/can green enchilada sauce, 4 PP
  • 1 tbsp dried cilantro flakes (or fresh!)
  • 1 cup corn, 5 PP
  • 2/3 cup uncooked white rice, 12 PP (replace with brown rice if you’d like. It’ll just take longer to cook)
  • 2 large jalapeno peppers, chopped, 1 PP
  • 2/3 cup mixed sweet peppers, diced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Click here for this Chicken Enchilada Soup recipe from “Amy Bites”!

Directions
1. Heat up a large soup pot with the olive oil over medium heat. Put in the onion, hot pepper (I like habanero!) and garlic and cook until fragrant (just a couple minutes at most). Then put in the pork. Sprinkle the chili powder and some salt and pepper over top. Cook until the pork is no longer raw and then pour the chicken broth and extra water over top.

2. Pour in the enchilada sauce, cilantro flakes, corn, rice, jalapeno peppers and sweet peppers. Bring to a boil and let it boil for a few minutes, then turn it down to medium low and let it cook until the rice is done. Add salt and pepper to taste.

3. Top it off with some tortilla strips and MAYBE some sour cream and/or cheese if you’d like and enjoy! Quick and easy!

You can add beans in there if you want, but with the rice and corn, your carb sector is covered. Basically, anything that you’d want to eat as a normal enchilada, put in the soup (except for the actual soft tortilla). You could do sweet potato, black bean and pork. You could try shrimp, zucchini and corn. It’s really hard to fail at this one. Just remember to put in the enchilada sauce! It really makes it.

It’s Been a Long Time Coming….

It’s time for an update! Life has changed a lot since Jess and I got married and we’re still in the process of making some other decisions that will change our lives even more (and for the better). I can’t talk about some of those things yet because they’re not set in stone, but I can talk about one thing.

bird cake, wedding cake, servatti's, servatii's

Our beautiful wedding cake that went along with the unintentional wedding theme of “Put a bird on it!”

The diet starts over again for the both of us today. Jess has been running again and I’m walking again! Points shall be tracked, muscles shall be built up and weight shall be lost once more! For a while there I just stopped losing and maintained my weight loss because I needed to focus on the wedding and honeymoon. Reasonable, right? I just needed to LIVE. I couldn’t focus on much more.

I’ll be honest, though. I lost most of my mojo when someone (that I love very much) challenged me to “lose as much weight as possible before the wedding so that I could shock everyone.” I know they meant to be helpful and that it was said out of love, but the minute it came out of their mouth, something in me changed. I felt like my weight loss stopped being a healthy journey for me and became a “show” for other people. I tried losing weight after that, but every time I’d start to track my food, I lost interest. Every time someone brought in goodies at work, I ate one… or maybe two. I even talked about it with my therapist. It’s funny how good-intentioned comments can have just a drastic effect on a person. A week later, I decided to stop focusing on the weight loss; I already felt beautiful in my wedding dress and I knew I was going to shock people anyway! I needed a break.

A bunch of my cousins looking just smashing, don’t you think?

It was a beautiful wedding weekend and a blissful honeymoon (in Seattle!) Jess and I put SO MUCH time and effort into planning the whole thing. Our moms helped out so much, especially my mom, since the family reception venue was local to her. We just can’t thank them enough! And everything turned out more amazing than we could have imagined. The courthouse ceremony was short and sweet, but we did write our own vows, so that made it more personal… and made everyone cry :)

These are the people that created me. See the wacky resemblances?

The friend reception was beautifully decorated by our own crew of family members that came to the courthouse, and we served delicious Thai food from our favorite Thai place! The dessert table was a wedding gift from a co-worker and she totally rocked it with homemade marshmallows (caramel and pb) with a little Bunsen burner for smore-making, pizzelles, cream puffs (vanilla, caramel and pumpkin spice), vegan black bottom cupcakes (tofutti and choco chips in some, cherry pie filling in the others) and chai caramels… all homemade!

These are my darling grandparents. They all picked EXACTLY the right props.

The family reception took place at a hotel/conference center, so everyone who drove in to town was able to party downstairs and then go up to their room to sleep off the drunkenness :) And almost everyone was drunk by midnight, lol. It was amazing. We are a combined family of fun, loud, talkative drunks. At 10pm, the reception room was closed off, but the hotel had a bistro with a full bar in it that stayed open until 2am. We closed it. I’ve never seen so many people in my family drunk at one time…. It. Was. Fantastic. Before all the drunkenness, the actual reception was a blast! Again, we decorated the whole place with the help of family members. Jess did the paper lanterns, I did the centerpieces and we both made the escort cards. Jess curated all the music and everyone in there danced at least once. My Noni was even the head of a conga line! Jess and I made photo props for the friend reception and brought those, along with cards and other games, to the family reception and they were a huge hit! My friend, Sara Taylor, from high school took our photos and they turned out beautiful (as you can tell).

Me and my Uncle Tony. He’s the other cook in the family. I’m going to work in his restaurant some day! And this photo is going on the wall in the kitchen.

Our honeymoon in Seattle was amazing. If you haven’t gone there yet, you need to go NOW. It’s so green and calm and artsy! It only rained the last part of our trip, but we love the rain, so it wasn’t bad. And it wasn’t gray all the time like people seem to think it is! Because of the rain, everything is so lush and vibrant. Chicago may be sunnier, but Seattle is definitely not a concrete jungle. We ate at delicious restaurants, spent hours at Pike’s Market, went up the Space Needle, toured a Dale Chihuly glass exhibit and did a lot of relaxing. It was much needed and sooooo worth it. We definitely want to go back.

crabs, pike's market

Jess took this awesome photo of crabs for sale at Pike’s Market! Don’t they look hilarious?

Although I maintained my weight loss (with about a five pound fluctuation) through all the events of these last two months, I’ve gained a few pounds more in the last couple weeks and I’m just done with it. I’m ready to feel good again. I’m ready to lose another 50 lbs so that I can make some healthy babies! That’s definitely the end goal. We want babies.

The hardest part is maintaing the motivation to do this every day again. I find myself doing really well for a day or two and then ruining it on the third day. Do you all experience that when you’re trying to get back on track? I’m promising to exercise AT LEAST twice a week; more if I can get it in. And I’m promising to track (and stay within my points) AT LEAST three days a week. I also just have to take it one day at a time. That’s the only way I can eventually get back on track until our life settles down a bit more. Does that sound like a cop out or a good coping strategy? One of these days I’ll actually go back to meetings… like when I can afford it! Come on, Weight Watchers, make it cheaper! Even poor people want help with losing weight!

Some of my favorite Dale Chihuly work.

Peas and Pancetta Pasta Topper

Sometimes I get really tired of red sauce.  I always have to wear shirts that I’m okay with getting spots on because I tend to slurp.  I usually end up fixing any red sauce that comes out of a bottle since public demand requires things to be a bit on the bland side in order to please the bulk of the customers.  And after 28 years of eating that same bowl of pasta and sauce, I just need something different once in a while.

Luckily, pasta is a food that can easily take on flavors other than marinara.  That’s why you can find a lot of different dishes at good Italian food places that don’t involve red sauce!  I’ve already given you  fantastic recipes for my alfredo sauce and meat sauce (also called a “ragu”).  I’ve also shared other toppings for pasta – a veggie saute and a sundried tomato, asparagus and feta combo.  All four of these are amazing, but I think that this newest one is my favorite thus far!

Peas and Pancetta Pasta Topper
Servings: 3
PointsPlus Per Serving: 5 PP

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups frozen or fresh green peas, 4 PP
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1/3 cup diced cooked ham, 1 PP
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tbsp parmesan cheese, 2 PP
  • 4 slices center-cut bacon, 2 PP
  • 2 tbsp Smart Balance light buttery spread, 4 PP

Directions
1. Get out a large non-stick skillet and place in your bacon. Turn it to medium heat and cook up that bacon until it’s fully cooked, but not crispy. Take out the bacon to cool, but leave the drippings in the pan.

2. Take your garlic and diced onion and put that right into the bacon drippings. Let it cook for a few minutes and then toss in the ham and peas. Cook for another five minutes or so until everything is warmed. Add the buttery spread and balsamic vinegar and stir until the spread is melted.

3. Put a lid over it all and let it simmer for a few more minutes. Once it’s done, divide over your favorite noodle, top with one tbsp of that parmesan cheese (unless you’re keeping it dairy-free) and enjoy.

After making this a few times, I think that this tastes best over gnocchi! There’s just something about those supple potato dumplings that makes all these flavors blend perfectly. I bought Archer Farms regular potato gnocchi, which is 16 PP for 3 cups. That would make each serving 10 PP…. not bad for 1 cup of filling gnocchi and about 1/2 cup of topping. A wonderful ratio of noodle to topping. YUM! You could also just put it over any other noodle or even rice. Or just do like I do and eat it over the stove with nothing but a spoon because it’s so damn tasty.

One last note… don’t think I’m going to skip out on all the wedding details.  They’re coming soon!  I know you all want to see some pictures and hear about it all :)

Honey Mustard Salmon

DEEEELICIOUS! That’s what this looks like. I’m a big fan of the honey-mustard combination and I’m always looking for new flavors to try with salmon, so I’m going to give this one a try! You should too :)

Spicy Beef Lentil Chili

lentil chili beef

Photo Courtesy of the “Debbie Does Dinner” blog!

My friend, Carissa, found this recipe on AllRecipes, modified it to her tastes and then sent it to me when I begged her for it.  I modified it as well by using beef instead of turkey, adding in white beans and upping the spices a bit.  It’s got the perfect level of heat for me… which could mean it’s a bit spicy for other people, but I also use very pure chili powder, so it could just be that!

This is a perfect dish to eat on such a perfectly chilly day like today!  It’ll warm you from your head to your toes and leave you with a bunch to eat throughout the week.  Score?  I think so :)

Spicy Beef Lentil Chili
Servings: 15 (1 cup each)
PointsPlus Per Serving: 4

Ingredients

  • 8 oz raw 85/15 lean ground beef, 12 PP
  • 2 cups cooked white beans, 11 PP
  • 3 cups dry green lentils, 24 PP
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 14.5-oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 quarts chicken/vegetable broth, 3 PP (I used water and 3 tbsp Better than Bouillon Organic Chicken Base)
  • 2 tbsp ground cumin, 2 PP
  • 2 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp chili powder, 1 PP
  • 1 tbsp ground turmeric, 1 PP
  • 1 tbsp dried thyme
  • 1 tbsp sea salt

Directions
1. But everything into a giant pot, turn on medium heat and cook for about 3-4 hours! Easy, right? You could even do this in a crockpot… but I’d recommend splitting the recipe in half because it is a LOT for a crockpot.  I even halved the written recipe after making it at home since the crockpot almost overflowed.  I had to put it into a pot and continue cooking it in there!

Top it off with a little Chobani 0% and you’ll be set!  If you don’t eat meat, you can leave it out and put tofu in there.  A little trick for those vegans out there… if you want your tofu to take on a similar texture to ground meat, try freezing your tofu and then thawing it.  Once you’ve drained it, it’ll have the texture you’re going for!

The Winner of the 2nd RWWF Love and Gratitude Box is….

larabar, giveaway, justin's nut butter, better than bouillon, eden organic, alder's salt, just soap, melinda's hot sauce

Warm and toasty goodies for the lucky winner!

Mermont84!!

Here was her winning entry:

Congratulations, Mermont84!  Random.org picked number 35 and that was you!  Please send me your email and mailing info so I can get your package of WARM AND TOASTY goodies sent out to you :)  For all of you that entered (or didn’t enter), this dedicated woman entered 12 times.  In fact, her entries made up just over 1/4th of the total entries for  this contest.  Just this contest, though.  On her twitter account she states that her way of relaxing in her spare time is by entering blog giveaways and tweeting about them all the time.  Girl… it’s paying off!

That kind of stuff really DOES pay off, actually.  Remember Jenna Z who won the last RWWF L&G Box?  She’s won so much stuff from contests throughout the years that other people are benefitting… like me!  Jenna won four tickets to Medieval Times in Chicago and she invited me and Jess to go with her and her hubby.  We did that last night and it was so entertaining!  The food was pretty good (nothing special, though); Jess and I got one vegetarian meal and one regular meal and shared so we could get a more balanced meal.  We actually liked the veggie meal better – rice stuffed pepper, grilled veggie skewer, potato wedges and hummus and pita chips.  It was a good decision :)

medieval times, dorks, renaissance

Please excuse the utter dorkiness.

Jenna’s also won everything from breast pumps to coupons for almond milk to high end strollers worth $250!  And once you win a prize, it’s your decision on what to do with it, whether it gets sold at work, lives in your basement or gets used every day.  It pays off for Jenna and it’s paying off for Mermont84.. it could pay off for you too!  There will definitely be another giveaway in the next few months, so stayed tuned for that.  How could I NOT give away a RWWF L&G Box around THANKSGIVING?!?!?

One more note – until Jess and I get back from our honeymoon in late October, blog posts might be a bit sparse, but I’m still going to get at least one up a week!  Please be patient with me; planning a wedding and two receptions AND a honeymoon is time-consuming work!  Lamo, but still worth the stress :)  I love you all!

 

RWWF Love and Gratitude Box Giveaway #2! **CLOSED**

I’m BAAAAAACK! Oh lordy, people, life got a bit crazy there. I won’t go into the ridiculous details, but I WILL give you a quick breakdown of my life over the past three weeks.

– This blog reached over 100K views!! WOOT WOOT!

– 5K in Madison, WI and we rocked it! I power-walked my butt all the way to the end and kept a great pace. Even sprinted at the end, passed Jess, but then she ran passed me at THE LAST SECOND! It made for a great picture.

– Bridal Shower for me and Jess. It. was. awesome. I love our family and friends! Great food, great fun, great gifts! I GOT A KITCHEN AID. It has already made cinnamon chai caramels, pizza dough, peanut butter marshmallows and diary-free chocolate chip cookies.

– We get married in less than a month! The last little details are coming together, but still take up a lot of time. What to do… blog or wedding? Lately, it’s been wedding! But I’m making up for it with another awesome giveaway!

larabar, giveaway, justin's nut butter, better than bouillon, eden organic, alder's salt, just soap, melinda's hot sauce

A fantastic mix of goodies to keep you warm through and through!

Last time, the theme was “Life is Sweet”. Now that the seasons are starting to change and cooler weather mixed with the smell of campfires and falling leaves, the theme for this giveaway has me wanting to get out my hoodies and thicker socks.

Be Warm and Toasty

Autumn is the best season. Colors are changing, air is getting chillier with each passing day and hot tea and coffee replaces all those iced drinks. Co-workers bring in more and more homemade treats because the holidays are getting closer and they want an new excuse to make cookies need to test out their recipes :)

Now, WHAT’S IN THE BOX??!?!?! This time I’m enticing you with savory things! Things that will help keep you a bit warmer and a bit toastier (or even go perfect with warm toast.) Here’s what one lucky reader will be receiving:

– One bag of Eden Organic Spicy Dry Roasted Pumpkin Seeds. These puppies are low sodium and flavored with garlic, cayenne and tamari. These are bound to put a little heat in your mouth and belly, but don’t eat the whole bag in one sitting! Each 1/4 cup serving equals 5 PP. Maybe you can pair it with some fresh snap peas? Good flavor combo there!

– One bar of Cinnamon Clove Just Soap. This soap smells like pure holiday. Put it in your bathroom and experience the awesome every day! Just don’t try eating it… I didn’t calculate the points.

– Two Larabars, courtesy of the awesome Larabar people who sent me a free variety box to divvy up in these Love and Gratitude boxes! The flavors this time are Blueberry Muffin and Pecan Pie. One is an exit from summer and and the other is an entrance into autumn. And I’ve tried both of these flavors. They are wonderful! I’m a huge Larabar fan these days, especially since I’m dairy-free! The Blueberry Muffin is 5 PP and the Pecan Pie is 6 PP.

Frontier Natural Products Co-op Alder Smoked Salt grinder. Sometimes you just need a little smoky flavor to take your food to the next level! The back of the grinder suggests pairing it with any grilled foods including asparagus, pork, ribs, burgers and more. Yes please! I haven’t tried this myself, but I can imagine it’s awesome in any of the suggested foods.

– One single serving pack of Justin’s Maple Almond Butter. Maple + almond butter? Heaven! Almond butter is packed with healthy fats and protein. This serving gives you 5 PP to spread on celery, toast, a sandwich or an apple! Sounds like a delicious snack to me.

– One 8 oz jar of Better Than Bouillon Vegetarian No-Chicken Base. I had to make sure my vegan friends would be interested in this basket too, right?? I’ve been going through my Better Than Bouillon bases like it’s my job. This stuff will make all of your soups even better! It’ll put sodium in there, but you won’t need to add any extra salt to your soup! It stays well in the fridge and it’s 0 PP per serving (although if you add 2 tbsp, you should be counting 2 PP.)

– One jar Melinda’s Original Habanero XXXtra Hot Sauce. It’s the original habanero pepper sauce! If you follow this blog, you know that I looooove spicy food! I can’t get enough. I haven’t actually had this stuff yet, but I’m super excited to go through my bottle! This stuff is guaranteed to keep you warm and toasty.

Now you know what’s in the box, but HOW DO YOU WIN THE RWWF LOVE AND GRATITUDE BOX??!?!??!?!?!!

ENTERING THE GIVEAWAY

There are multiple ways you can enter! And since I’m not picking a winner until Saturday, September 22nd, you have about two weeks to get in as many entries at you can.  I’m waiting that long because Sept. 22nd is the first official day of fall!  Perfect timing, eh?

Ways to Enter (make sure to leave a separate comment for each one, otherwise they won’t be counted as multiple entries):
1. Leave a comment on this post telling me what you’re grateful for – 3 entries max for this.

2. “Like” my Facebook page and leave me a comment on THIS POST that you did or already do – 1 entry.

3. Become an email subscriber for this blog and leave me a comment saying that you did or already do (if you follow in Google Reader or another reader, that’s fine too, just make a note of it in your comment) – 1 entry.

4. Follow @ReluctantFoodie on Twitter and leave a comment on this blog telling me that you did or already do – 1 entry.

5. Tweet the following message “Win a RWWF Love and Gratitude Box of goodies from @ReluctantFoodie! Enter here – http://wp.me/p1cn3Q-yF” and leave a comment on this blog telling me that you did – 3 entries max for this.

6. Share my blog post link on Facebook with the following in the comment box, “Win a RWWF Love and Gratitude Box of goodies on The Reluctant WW Foodie blog!” and leave a comment on this blog telling me that you did – 3 entries max for this

7. Go to the FB pages of Better Than Bouillon, Larabar, Justin’s Nut Butters, Frontier Natural Products Co-op, Just SoapEden Foods  and “like” them AND leave a comment on their blog letting them know that you were sent there because you’re trying to win a giveaway from The Reluctant Weight Watchers Foodie that includes one of their products – (1 entry each, 6 entries max in total for this)

8. Get on KLOUT and give me some Klout for Blogging, Cooking, Weight Watchers, Food or Recipes and leave me a comment letting me know that you did – (1 entry each, 5 entries max in total for this).

There’s TWENTY-THREE entries possible for each of you.  That’s a lot!  Just make sure to have all your entries submitted as separate comments on THIS BLOG POST by MIDNIGHT on September 21st and the winner will be chosen at random (using random.org) and announced on September 22nd!  The winner will have two days to respond to my initial email letting them know they won, otherwise I’ll have to choose a new winner.  Enter them all at once or spread them out, just enter!  I can’t wait to see who’s going to win!

Perfect Vegan Biscuits

Angela:

AAAHHH!!! VEGAN BISCUITS!!! I think I just peed my pants in excitement.

I went to Ruby Tuesdays with Jess the other night and had a sad little moment eating my salad while she enjoyed a couple of their cheddar garlic biscuits. Now I can make my own and eat them all! Can you tell I’m excited?

Originally posted on BitterSweet:

Biscuit-making and -eating is not in my heritage; I can’t recall having these savory, flaky quick breads on my dinner table even once throughout my childhood. It’s a shame, really, because they’re such a tasty and effortless side that perfectly compliments almost any meal. Traditional or “authentic” southern biscuits may be beyond the scope of my abilities, but I do know that I like mine tall, tender, and fluffy, with more flavor than just plain flour can bring to the table. Fresh herbs and a healthy handful of vegetables liven up this simple staple, making it ideal for serving with soups, smothered in gravy, or just eaten solo.

Garden Herb Biscuits

2 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
2 1/2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
1 Teaspoon Coarse Sea Salt or Kosher Salt
1/4 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chopped Parsley
2 Tablespoons Fresh Chopped Chives
1 1/2 Teaspoon Fresh…

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