Cheese for the Soul

Saturday morning I did something I haven’t done in a while on a weekend – workout!  Shaun T and I got busy with Beta Cardio and then I did the Ab Interval.  With the central air not on, and the temps in the mid 80s outside, it was kind of doing a hot yoga only with Shaun T!

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As I was showering and getting ready for work, I told Tony that I had a taste for a chicken pita that’s at a beef place by us.  It’s so simple, yet so good, so while I ironed my work shirt for the last time, he did a lunch run.

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So by the time I got to work, everyone had heard that I quit, except they thought by seeing me there that I changed my mind and was staying.  This one woman came in and said “oh, so glad to see you – we need good people like you staying.”  I hated to tell her an hour later when she wasn’t busy that it was in fact my last day.  I had to be there by 3:30 to set up for a party of 45 for a 90th birthday party.  I split the room with one of my good friends and we had a fun time with it.  The Chef was there, he told me the door is always open if I want to come back, or if I just want to work private parties.  I always leave a job on good terms because you never know – never burn any bridges.

So here’s a twist in things.  I quit on Monday – and the two GM’s quit on Wednesday!  This week is going to be their last week, and the Chef apparently is going to play a bigger role in the front of the house.  He mentioned again how they were going to break ground “any day” on the outdoor patio.  Um, that hasn’t happened yet, and I think by the time it does break ground by the time they finish they’ll need space heaters!   I was home by 10:30 and in bed by midnight.

Now, I am the person who LOVES to sleep in.  Like, it’s my favorite thing to do on the weekend.  Saturday?  I was up at 8:30.  Yesterday?  I was up at 8 and wide awake!  It was perfect.  I was working on the computer, had an awesome breeze coming through the window, it was quiet – it was very productive and relaxing all at the same time.  I ended up heading to our local farmers market.  We don’t get any local produce until late July, early August.  But there is cheese!

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I actually didn’t buy any.  I don’t know, it looked like store bought cheese so I took a pass, but I do believe that Cheese is for the Soul!  I did end up buying Cabot cheese at the grocery store, and a jalapeno havarti.  The world is right again now that I have cheese in my fridge.

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I did buy basil though – $2 a bunch!  And I bought some flat leaf parsley and some asparagus.  $8 out the door.  Next time I go, I am going to get pizza – there was a guy in a mobile pizza oven!  He said he had it built and shipped from Italy, and then he mounted it on a custom made trailer so he could drive it from place to place.  He used hard wood and said that it got up to 900 degrees.

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And it was a gorgeous day – you can never have too many cloud pictures.

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Tony and I ended up going out to lunch before hitting up the grocery store.  We ended up going to Texas Road House – it’s our second time there and it’s pretty good.  I had to have a beer because I haven’t had this new one – New Belgium’s SnapshotCarrie, have you had it before?   It was delicious – it reminded me of a milder version of Blue Moon.  Tony thought it tasted like ass.

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I ended up getting a pulled pork sandwich.  It was a tad on the dry side, but nothing a few (dozens) of sprinkles of Tabasco sauce couldn’t cure.

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When we got back from the store I got busy.  I am entering another recipe contest – where again the prize is $5,000.  My friend at work told me about it – it’s a recipe contest for Extended Stay America hotel chain.  They have kitchens in their hotels, and it just so happens Tony and I will be staying at one when we go to Mayo in a few weeks.  She told me all the things that are provided in the kitchen, so obviously baking was out because there is no oven.  There is a two range burner, a microwave and full fridge.  And pots, skillets, utensils, plates and silverware.  I am not going to show my recipe yet, but I used one pot and two skillets and it was done in 30 minutes.  Oh, and it could only be 10 ingredients or less!  Fingers crossed – I have to submit it by July 7, and then the first round gets announced at the end of July.  The top four recipes get a trip to New York where you have a cook-off with Sunny Anderson of Food Channel, and the winner of that gets not only the $5,000, but also a 4 day pass to a Food & Wine Festival in October.  Um, yes please!

So after being bizzy in the kitchen, it was nice to sit outside with Tony, cool off and do some grilling.  I love grilling once and eating twice.  I first grilled up How Sweet Eat’s honey chipotle chicken to make her burrito bowls later this week – you need to make this chicken – so flavorful and spicy!

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And then I grilled up some rosemary and garlic marinated pork blade shoulder steaks.  It’s pork and it’s thin enough where Tony likes it – winning!

Today starts Week 4 of my strength training.  What I am really reaching for is to be able to do a handstand like my sista Heather – is she a bad ass or what?!

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Today is WI day – and I am down exactly one pound.

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I didn’t do that great on the water intake last week, going to try to do better this week.  I have some good recipes to share with you later this week though – peanut butter chip banana muffins, chipotle roasted red pepper hummus and sesame seasoned baked pita chips – so good!

Alright, time to pack my gym bag and food for the day – make it a great day!

Chilling and Grilling

Usually Friday’s at the office are really quiet and every time you look up at the clock and think 45 minutes has gone by, and it’s only been 10 minutes.  Waaaaa.  But yesterday was steady busy all day and it actually went by pretty fast. 

Friday food is always a “throw shit in a bag” day.  I had some baby new potatoes that were cooked and hanging out in the fridge.  I had thick cut deli ham, egg whites, spinach, cheese – a hash was born.  I sauteed the potatoes in a touch of olive oil, salt and pepper.  While that was cooking I went downstairs and ironed a shirt for work.  When I came back up, I added everything else (but the cheese) to the pan, turned the heat to medium low, put a lid on it and got dressed and brushed my teeth.   I just threw the contents of the pan into tupperware, but it in my lunch bag and I was good to go.

Once at work, I put the hash under the broiler in the office toaster oven, topped with about 3/4 an ounce of Cabot pepper jack cheese (which I found in the back of my deli meat drawer – score!) and it came out delicious.  The top was all melty cheesy goodness, and the potatoes were a bit crunchy from when I pan fried them.  On the side?  Is a splash of the guajillo pepper salsa.  I need to make more of that stuff – so good!

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Yesterday was arms on the strength menu.  My step-son gave me a holder for my iPod several years ago, and I made it kind of work to hold my iPhone while working out – I sent him this text message, love that he blew me a kiss! Red heart

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It works for now, but I may need to look into something else that actually is meant for an iPhone – any suggestions?  And you will be happy to know I wasn’t alone in the gym again Kym and Louise!

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Yep, that’s me doing my close grip bench presses with 20 pounds – I am definitely going to kick it a notch up next week.  I had plans of doing my cardio afterwards, but I could feel my blood sugar dropping, and knew that wasn’t going to happen.   I got back to work and heated up two pieces of leftover Mexican pizza.  Again on a klassy Styrofoam plate.

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When I got home Tony was just setting up shop if you will at our table under the gazebo.  So far we haven’t had to put the mesh sides up because the bugs haven’t been too bad – we both spray ourselves with Off and that seems to do the trick.  He made me a delicious vodka lemonade drink with seltzer and lemon, we listened to a Doug Benson podcast – there is this guy that he has that does an awesome impression of Mark Wahlberg – Heather, do you know what I am talking about?  I also need to get that one youtube podcast with the cat that you said was so funny – not sure Tony has seen it before.

I brought out some chips and baja fresh salsa – Amee – here is the link for the salsa – so simple, I think you’ll really love it! 

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Before we knew it, it was 8:00 and we hadn’t fixed dinner yet!  Tony bought a bone-in ribeye for us to split, and while we were sitting outside, I cooked some red potatoes.  I just finished them off on the grill.  I think the ribeye is my favorite cut – I normally do my 2x2x2x2 method to cook steak – meaning I cook 2 minutes on one side, 2 minutes on the other, then in the opposite direction cook 2 minutes then the last 2 minutes.  I literally use a stop watch on my phone.  That gives you perfect medium rare every time.  But this steak wasn’t as thick, so I did it 1.5×1.5×1.5×1.5 minutes.  Perfect!  And I may have switched to wine with dinner. Thumbs up

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It was a perfect night!  Today is my last day at the restaurant.  I got a call yesterday telling me that I am working a party that starts at 5, so I have to be there at 3:30 so I have to leave my house by 2:45.  I am a bit sad to see it go, but it isn’t cost effective for me to make the equivalent to gas money to get there.  And sadly, true to form, I probably will never talk to any of these people again.  I am weird that way.  When I leave a job, doesn’t matter if I’ve eaten lunch with you every day for years, as soon as you leave, or I leave, it’s a closed chapter in my book.  I normally leave a place and say under my breath – have a nice life!

So I didn’t get in all my steps yesterday because of the lack of cardio at lunch, but I didn’t do too bad!

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And thanks for cheering my on Treasa!

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Alright, I am actually going to do a T-25 dvd this morning to get my sweat on.  And sweat I will – It’s nearly 85 degrees and we don’t have the air on – it will be like doing T-25 in a hot yoga studio!  I’ll post the after sweaty pick on Instagram – are you following me?  mybizzykitchen

Have a great weekend!  See you Monday!

Spicy Crab and Carrot Sushi Rolls

Yesterday as I headed out the door to squeeze in a quick 30 minute walk before work, it was overcast, misty, foggy and 60 degrees.  Did I mention it was also exhilarating too?!

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And thanks Kim for cheering me on during my walk! Open-mouthed smile

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By the time I got back home to get ready for work, I already had 4000 steps – nice!  Breakfast was another egg McMuffin maker – egg white/spinach/cheese/high fiber English muffin.  How the hell did that hot sauce get on there?!   I never did end up eating the apple.

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Just ended up keeping my head down at work, and before I knew it, it was time to get bizzy at the gym.  Yesterday was shoulders, and again, new to me exercises.  I have never done lateral arm raises on a Smith Machine before.

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Strength took me about 35 minutes, and then I finished off with a mile run.

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So although I am a Pinterest whore, I have really become an Instagram whore too.  So many people to follow!  My following is quite eclectic, which I like, you never know what you are going to see.  Last week I saw this cucumber “sushi” dish and it looked really good.   I was inspired by this recipe, but I knew I wanted to switch a couple things up.  First, while I like that she cut her cucumber slices thin and then used a toothpick to keep it together before stuffing, I realized that I wanted a more “finger food” approach, so I cut thick slices of an English cucumber and hollowed it out a bit with a melon baller, leaving a little bit of the bottom so I wouldn’t lose any of the filling.   I also wanted a creamier filling, so enter in Chobani greek yogurt and sriracha!


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Can I just say yum?!  While these were messy to eat (I ended up eating off the shrimp first) the flavors were so good – a little bit sweet from the fake crab, yet spicy with the jalapeno and the sour cream sriracha mixture was amazeballs.  On the side was a veggie egg roll I made over the weekend over a bit of spinach white rice.  This lunch was so filling.  #winning!

I also am going to be putting a logo on my Instagram pics – do you think that it is obnoxious?

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I was actually busy at work yesterday afternoon so it went by really quick.  I just can’t wait to see 5:00 on the clock to get the hockey puck out of there.  Tony and I sat outside for a good hour – it was so nice out!  I didn’t have to do a thing because Tony made dinner.  A cold pasta salad – tri colored cheese tortellini, with carrots, celery, artichoke hearts, Parmesan cheese and some Newman’s Own light balsamic dressing – I did add a bit of chopped giardiniera to mine, but this was delicious – thanks honey!

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And I had a guest for dinner!  Although he didn’t stay long!

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Thanks to my walk before work, I had no problem meeting my 10,000 step goal – nice!  I am actually taking it easy this morning – my back and shoulders are a bit sore this morning after the last couple of strength workouts, so I am a bit slow going today.  But I have arms on tap for my lunch workout Open-mouthed smile

Off to get myself a cup of coffee and do some blog reading – happy Friday – make it a great day!

Boboli Mexican Pizza

I made the decision to not worry about work drama.  Nothing I can do will change the situation, so I am keeping on keeping on.  Not gonna lie – stress like that makes me want to dive head first into a box of Dunkin Donuts Munckins (which, by the way, I deemed insulin worthy a LONG time ago) or order a small deep dish pizza and eat the whole thing.  I just have to slow my roll, take a deep breath, and remember that to achieve my goals eating donuts and deep dish pizza isn’t going to get me there.

So I made another egg white, baby spinach, Cabot garlic and herb cheese breakfast sammie on a Thomas high fiber English muffin and grapes on the side.  The battery was out on my DSLR, and my charger was at home – thanks for my trusty iPhone to step in!  I have an iPhone 4 and I think I can upgrade in December – can’t wait!  I want the panoramic camera!

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So yesterday was back on the strength menu.  Again, a couple new to me exercises, nothing a youtube video review before hand couldn’t explain.  My favorite exercise of the day?  The V Bar T Bar Row.  While in this video he put a weight plate on a barbell, I am not quite sure how to secure the weight plates on the barbell yet, so I just used a barbell that had the weights already attached.  I started with 50 pounds and that was not too hard, so after a few reps, switched it to 80 pounds.  Wowza, could I feel that in my back muscles!  I kinda felt like a bad ass weight lifter – you know, cause I am. Open-mouthed smile

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The strength took me about 25 minutes to complete, then I ran 1.25 miles.  Then I did a good 5 minutes of stretching – I always forget to stretch and I know how good I feel when I am done.

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Remember this chicken from the weekend?

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I ended up chopping off about 3 ounces of the breast meat to make a low carb tortilla panini press quesadilla.  I mixed the chopped chicken with a tablespoon of my guajillo pepper sauce, then added about 1/2 a cup of baby spinach and just under an ounce of Cabot cheese and put that in my panini press for about 5 minutes on high.   These are my favorite low carb tortillas.  I love how versatile they are, and even though these are flour tortillas, they did crisp up a bit in the panini press.  So my quesadilla had 14 grams of fiber!


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Long time readers will remember that nearly every Friday night for the longest time, I ‘d make homemade pizza.  However, after a while, Tony got sick of having pizza all the time.  Um, turns out that he doesn’t have the same passion about pizza that I do!   But I had a taste for Mexican pizza, and if memory served me right, I think Tony did like it.  I broached the subject to him yesterday.  He asked “do you have a Boboli crust?”  Um, no, I was going to use Alton Brown’s overnight pizza dough, but knowing how much Tony loves his Boboli crust and the only way I could sell the Mexican pizza, was to have him pick one up.

If you are afraid of making your own pizza dough, please try Alton Brown’s overnight pizza dough to start with.   You can make the dough on a Thursday night after dinner, stick it in the fridge and let the yeast do it’s magic overnight in the fridge.   When you get ready to make your pizza on Friday night, since it’s a little cold still from the fridge. just dampen your hands and rub the dough as you stretch it out, and put a little bit of water on your counter with the flour to make it easier to roll out.  Okay, I digress!  Here we go . . . Mexican Pizza.


PicMonkey Collage mexican pizza

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Yummers!  I ate 1/2 of this pizza.  The stats for that portion?  614 calories, 15 fat, 73 carbs, 11.3 fiber! and 32 protein.  And while I am sure some of you are thinking “holy cow that’s a lot for pizza” it isn’t really because it fit in with the rest of my day.  I ended up with only 1560 calories for the day, and got in a whopping 38 grams of fiber.  And I was satisfied after eating it so I wasn’t looking for stuff to eat later on in the night.

I was in bed by 11:00 and up at 6:30 this morning.  It’s now just after 7:00 a.m. and I don’t have to leave for work for another hour and five minutes, so guess who’s getting their walking shoes on?  This girl!

Today’s lunch should be interesting – I did my take on a crab cucumber roll from this girls site – doesn’t that look good?!


Alright – time to get out on the work before the rain stops me – make it a great day!


Thanks for all your comments yesterday about the restaurant job.  I am a firm believer that if one door closes, another one will open!  Not going to worry about a second job until after Mayo, so its all good.  Although I did have a dream last night that I was complaining about seating at the restaurant to the GM and she looked at me and said “If you don’t like it here, go work at Chili’s!”  Ha!

I had one last Chobani that needed to be used up.  For some reason Tony and I didn’t buy much fruit last weekend, but we have a big bag of frozen fruit, so I just defrosted 3/4 of a cup of it – its mango, peaches, strawberries and pineapple.  I made a mini fruit parfait for breakfast.

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Work yesterday was crazeballs.  I won’t go into details, but I was brought to tears at one point.  What I really wanted to do?  Order a deep dish pizza and eat the whole thing myself.  But, I didn’t.  I went to the gym and had an awesome workout.  Legs were on the strength menu – first on the list?  Box jumps!  Shelley, I couldn’t help but think of you and your fear of them!  (You can read her story about it here).

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Only one problem guys.  That box was HUGE!  That was the only one I could find at the gym.  I tried and there was no way I was going to jump that high.  So I ended up just stepping up, stepping down – 20 reps for THREE sets!  I was feeling the burn!  Another new to me exercise was the cable side leg exercise – after I took this video I realized I wasn’t standing far enough away, and stepped further away from the machine for a bigger range of motion – boy could I feel that on the outside of my quad!  Please disregard my bad videographer skillz!

]The leg exercises took me 35 minutes, so I only had time to run a mile before heading back to the office.

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Over the weekend my Mom and I had Mexican food.  I had chicken fajitas and there was a ton leftover, so I decided to make leftover chicken fajita nachos for lunch.  But the star of the show was a new “salsa” to me.  I put the “salsa” in quotes because it’s thick like ketchup – almost like a condiment more than a salsa.  I brought some for one of my work friends to taste.  He brought leftover skirt steak for lunch and told me he spread this sauce over the steak and it was “really ridiculous.”  Ridiculously good!  We both agreed we could eat this sauce with a spoon with nothing else on it, it’s so flavorful.  When I read this recipe in an old Bon Appetit magazine, I realized that I had everything at home to make it.  You know, doesn’t everyone have dried guajillo peppers in their pantry?

Grilled Guajillo Chile Salsa

4 ounces dried guajillo chiles
(about 18), stemmed
6 garlic cloves, unpeeled
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more to taste
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon garlic powder (I used 2 teaspoons minced fresh garlic)
1 teaspoon onion powder (I left that out)

Heat your grill to a medium heat.  Working in batches, grill chiles until slightly puffed and fragrant, 15–20 seconds per side. Let cool.
Using kitchen scissors and working over a medium bowl, cut chiles into thin rings, reserving seeds. Cover with 2 cups very hot water and let soak for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the same skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; cook, turning often, until tender  lightly charred, about 8 minutes. Let cool. Peel; trim ends.
Transfer chiles with seeds and liquid to a blender; add roasted garlic, 1 1/2 tsp. salt, and remaining ingredients. Pulse until a thick, coarse purée forms. Season with salt.

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My store sells dried juajillo peppers for .99 a bag.  Look for them the next time you are at your store.  This is such an amazingly flavorful sauce, and even keeping all the dried seeds in the puree, it was flavorful spicy not knock your socks off spicy.

I also made more baja fresh salsa – you can’t have too much salsa in my book!  Although this time I grilled the garlic on the grill and it came out charred, yet soft.  I could definitely pick up the garlic flavor in this batch of salsa.

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And that cutting board?  It just shows what a mess I am in the kitchen when I cook!

Tony was nice and made me a drink after the work day I had yesterday – we sat and talked for 30 minutes or so before I got bizzy on making dinner.

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Dinner was so easy – grilled chicken thighs and corn on the cob.  I chopped up some hot giardinera for my corn – spicy goodness!

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I got all my steps in too, and then some!

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Today is a new day, just hope it’s better than yesterday!  Make it a great day!

Yesterday I Was A Quitter

Saturday night I was working the bar with another server.  She’s been with the Chef for a long time, and I knew once I was splitting the bar with her, she would decide what section of the bar I got.  She told me that she had a special request party that night in the bar, so she would take the front half of the bar, and I could have the back half of the bar.  No problem, I would make the best of the situation.  I had a 2 top at 5:15 and they ate and left the restaurant by 6:00.  Her party started coming in around 6:30 and she handled all the people that came in – drinks, taking food orders, etc.  The only problem was the way the party was sitting/standing, anyone who took a look in the bar upon first walking in would think that the bar was completely crowded, when in fact my half of the bar was completely empty.

By 8:00 – with two hours since my last table and three hours since I arrived with no tables, I went to the host stand and told them that I was leaving.  The GM said “the bar is hopping – how can you leave?”  When I explained that all the people were part of the other servers private party, he shook his head and said “wow, sorry about that – that doesn’t seem to be fair.”   And it isn’t.   This server seems to get all the parties, the big tables, etc., and I just can’t compete with that.

The Saturday before that I had two 2-tops, and then had an 8 top coming in that ended up being a party that was booked by two separate people, so my 8 top didn’t exist.  The weekend before that I was in the back dining room, and watched the hostess seat a section in the front room 5 times before I even got a table, while I walked around for an hour and a half filling water and clearing plates off of tables that were not my own.  It has no longer become profitable for my time to work there, so I quit yesterday.

With seconds the GM that I talked to on Saturday replied and said that he is sorry for my decision, but gave me his personal email and phone number if I needed a reference.  A few hours later I got an email from the Chef asking to talk to him personally on my last shift which is Saturday before I make any decisions.   But my mind has been made up – it’s been a downward run for the last couple months, and Saturday was just the straw that broke the camels back.   I’ve decided that after we get back from the Mayo Clinic I’ll look for another second job.

So I was home by 8:45 with $14 in my pocket on Saturday night.  Tony made me a delicious pepperoni and hot giardiniera pizza bread, and we watched Django Unchained – great Quentin Tarantino movie!

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Sunday I met up my Mom for lunch and a bit of shopping.  She’s going out of town for a few weeks, then we are gone so it was either see her Sunday or not see her for over a month!  We all know I am her favorite!  And that is a poster outside of a Marshall’s – it’s like the blonde is doing a photo bomb!

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I made a grilled chicken on Sunday night – so good!  The secret to that awesome mahogany skin?  Butter!  I just take about a tablespoon of soft butter and rub it all over the bird – you just have to make sure that after you rinse your chicken (I always do) and that you pat it completely dry.  This just had salt and pepper and butter.  I added BBQ sauce later.

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One of the things my Mom gave me when I saw her on Sunday was a microwave egg McMuffin maker.  She said that she first used it at my Aunt’s Lake house and loved it.  She came home and it was hard to find, but she just found them at Bed Bath & Beyond –


While you know I do love my McMuffins, I usually just cook my eggs on the stove at home and put it together on a toasted English muffin when I get to work.  I decided to give it a try – I brought a container of egg whites, a handful of baby spinach, bacon bits and cheese.  I put the spinach, egg whites and bacon bits in the container, nuked that for 1.5 minutes, then added the cheese and cooked for 30 more seconds.  Done!  I have to say, this worked really well – the eggs were nice and fluffy, almost as if they steamed in the container?

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Yesterday began Week 3 of my Strength Training!  We were back to chest – two new exercises to me?  The high and low chest fly on a machine.   I watched a video on how to use the machine so I had it in the right spots for the chest fly – I only did 10 pounds but I felt it!  Then finished off with a 1.5 mile run.

workout picmonkey

I’ve been dying to share my lunch recipe with you since I made it over the weekend.  But I have to tell you, I am calling this a hot/cold salad.  It was meant to be a cold salad, but I didn’t like the texture of the noodles for some reason cold, so I picked the noodles out, heated them up for a minute, then added the cold chicken and cucumbers back in – topped with a little crushed peanuts – delish!  I also originally thought this would be two servings, but it turned out to be a lot, so I made this three servings.


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I love Daikon radish – it doesn’t have that same bite as a regular radish – and it blended in so well with the pasta it felt like I was eating a lot more pasta than I really was – that’s why the carbs aren’t too bad on this pasta dish.

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Warmed up for lunch withy my klassy plastic fork:

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Last night for dinner was another his/hers seafood dinner – salmon for Tony and shrimp for me!   Since I didn’t use all the coconut milk in the dish above, I decided to make a Thai coconut milk shrimp marinade.

Spicy Thai Coconut Shrimp Marinade

  • 1/2 pound shrimp
  • 1/4 cup light coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sriracha
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon mushroom soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons grated jalapeno pepper
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • juice of half a lime, zest of whole lime

That marinated overnight.   Tony took charge of his salmon and I grilled my shrimp.

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I served mine over 1/2 a cup of cooked white rice, with Parmesan zucchini chips.  And if inquiring minds want to know, the fryer is back on the kitchen counter.   The secret to my zucchini chips?  After I bread them, I stick them in the freezer for 10-15 minutes – that way the breading stays on, they are crispy on the outside, yet soft and creamy on the inside.  No dipping sauce required!

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I got all my steps in yesterday too!

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And I am happy to report that I drank water last night – not wine. #winning!

Alright, time to get this show on the road – I made salsa and a dried guajillo pepper sauce over the weekend that is amazeballs – you’ll just have to come back tomorrow to see how they turned out!  Make it a great day!

Joe “Vecipe”

When I met my step-son at the tender age of almost 11, I am sure he didn’t know what to think of me.  Sure, his Dad dated women after he got divorced and when Joe was littler, but I was one of only a few to actually meet Joe.  Smart man Tony was.  I can’t tell you how many of my friends had kids and then divorced, and would bring dates around, their kids would get attached, and then the mom would move on.  It messed those kids up.

This picture of Joe was taken merely three weeks after Tony and I met.  It was taken at an office summer outing.  Joe put this picture on Facebook last week telling Tony that he was sorry that he wouldn’t be seeing him for Papa Day this year.

little joe

One of the first things I did with Hannah and Joe together was to make cookies.  When I asked Joe if he wanted to make cookies he said “yes!” and immediately went to the refrigerator in search of store bought cookie dough rolls while Hannah went searching for  the flour and sugar.  Turns out Tony would buy two tubes of the cookie dough, apparently one for Joe to eat raw and the other one to bake!  He was a picky eater back then – he had his Dad even peel the skins of the hot dogs and I had to cut the skins off of apples for him to eat them.

So much has changed!  Now we’ll see on Instagram that he and his wife enjoyed mahi mahi for dinner and Tony and I both look at each other can can’t believe it.  I guess your palate can change from age 11 to 24!

When he first moved out on his own at 18 he learned to cook for himself.  Um, turns out his Mom was kind of a hamburger helper kind of cook – not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I think that Joe definitely picked up the cooking bug from both me and his Dad.  He would call us with a Joe “Vecipe.”  Since V is the start of his last name it just became a Vecipe instead of a recipe!  He would call me and say “Biz, there is this seasoning by McCormick called Montreal Steak Seasoning – but don’t be fooled by that name because it’s great on chicken too!”

So this past week he put up a picture of a home cooked dinner he made for his wife – a manicotti of sorts – he stuffed his shells with rice and beef and made a tomato sauce – not a truly Italian version sans the ricotta cheese, but he could have easily picked up a Stouffer’s frozen dinner – so proud of his cooking skills!


And I have to show off his other pics on Facebook – OMG, his dogs are so fricken cute!!  The white one is called Cinnamon Bun:


And the black one is called Taquito:


I am so happy that he and his wife are going strong – they only met and moved to Texas within three months of knowing each other, but somehow I think they knew it was true love – especially when Lizz made this for Joe!

touch my butt and buy me pizza

Ah, true love!  “You’re my cup of coffee.”  Natalie – did you take that picture??

cup of coffee

So I hope you keep on cooking and loving each other – all the rest doesn’t matter in the whole grand scheme of things.

Hope you had a great weekend!  (p.s. – you’ll have to follow me on Instagram to see pics of my weekend and my weigh in! – follow me at mybizzykitchen)  Make it a great day!