Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Sick Day, 2 New Recipes, 4 Miles, Frozen Spices and Calling All Soups

Today I woke up feeling bad – massive headache, sore throat, etc. To be honest – I felt hungover! And exhausted. So weird. So I called in sick and fell back asleep. I woke up again at 10 a.m. CRAZY! I never do this. I felt better when I woke up and even thought about going in, but decided to just stay home and rest and drink water. So I did. I went down and got breakfast. And had a dove chocolate.

Then Austin came home for lunch and I baked a new recipe I put together last night form Monica’s Food Network Magazine: Mediterranean Calzone. Here’s the recipe for TWO calzones.

4 oz. chicken
1 garlic clove
8 oz. pizza dough
¼ cup low-fat ricotta cheese
¼ cup red onion, chopped
2 artichoke hearts, chopped
1/8 cup roasted red peppers, rinsed and chopped
½ small Roma tomato, seeded, cored and diced
1 oz. fat-free feta cheese
2 tsp olive oil

Inside pre-cooked


Outside post-cooking


Cut in half, ready to eat - yummy!


Preheat oven to 375. In the meantime, sauté garlic and chicken until no longer pink. Cover a flat surface and divide pizza dough into two sections. Roll each into a circle and place on baking sheet. Mix ricotta cheese and onion together chicken-garlic mixture. To assemble each calzone, layer ricotta mixture, artichoke heart, red pepper and 2 oz. chicken breast on one half of each dough section. Next sprinkle tomato and feta. Leave ¼-inch around perimeter of dough. Fold in half to make a half-moon shape. Pinch sides together with a bit of water to seal. Brush exterior of dough with oil. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Nutritional Information for EACH calzone (1/2 recipe): 474 calories, 62 carbs, 13 fat grams and 26 protein grams.

REVIEW: We REALLY liked it, but next time I’m going to sprinkle some salt and red pepper flakes in the inside for more flavor, add some onion, and reduce the olive oil (really only needed a ¼ tsp TOTAL). Very good though! Austin headed back to work and, I had a Kashi cookie and, I kid you not, fell asleep. Geez! Who am I? LOL Finally around 3:30 I decided I had to get out, so I drove over the gym close by and thought I’d walk a bit and see how I felt. I got in and walked 4 miles – good stuff! I headed home and had 2 crackers with cheese – yum. Then I put together dinner for the night Cooking Light’s Southwestern Chicken and White Bean Soup.


8 oz. chicken breast
1.5 tbsp 40%-less-sodium taco seasoning
Cooking spray
2 tsp olive oil
2 cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 16-ounce can white beans, rinsed and drained (272 grams total)
1/2 cup green salsa
2 tbsp Fat-free sour cream
Chopped cilantro (optional)
Trader Joe’s Organic Corn Chips (20 grams)
Cumin and Salt to taste

Combine chicken and taco seasoning; toss well to coat. Heat a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray, and add olive oil. Add chicken; sauté 2 minutes or until chicken is lightly browned. Add broth, scraping pan to loosen any browned bits. Meanwhile, place beans in a small bowl; mash until only a few whole beans remain. Add beans and salsa to pan, stirring well. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 10 minutes or until slightly thick. Makes two large servings. Top each with 1 tbsp sour cream, cilantro and 10 grams corn chips if desired. Nutritional Information (including cilantro, sour cream and chips): 426 calories, 38 carbs, 10 fat grams and 37 protein grams.

REVIEW: I LOVED this! Austin liked it a lot, but said it was a little too salty for his taste. I decided I won't add cumin or salt next time - I think because all of the ingredients (chicken stock, salsa, etc.) are salty in and of themselves, it doesn’t need anything extra. I’ll definitely be making this again – but next time I’ll make more servings! Woo! I also loved that I was able to use this ingenious product – frozen cilantro cubes (from Trader Joe's - a Moncia recommendation)!


I added two cubes right before I took it off the heat – SO good, and great to use if you aren’t looking for a garnish. (gives the flavor- not the look!) Trader Joe's also has Basil and Garlic - but I have the basil plant and am fine with jarred minced garlic! (and garlic NEVER goes bad!)

Then I had yet another kashi cookie, got everything ready for work and got in bed – still kind of tired but definitely feeling better. Maybe I’m just run down? Or maybe it’s this weather change (back and forth; hot and cold)? Or sinus pressure? I dunno, but I’m glad I feel better and am going to get some rest tonight! I’m such an old lady!

A few questions:
What fresh spices do you keep on hand?
Have you ever tried frozen spices?
What is your favorite soup? (tis the season!)

K -out to watch TV with Austin! I might have a treat later so i'll post my stats in the morning! Happy Tuesday! SO GLAD tomorrow is hump day!

24 comments:

angieinatlanta said...

I think you picked a good day to stay home sick; I heard traffic was still a total nightmare out there! It's better to be safe and sound in bed for sure!

I've never tried frozen spices but I should! Your soup looks awesome!

I always keep garlic, basil, red pepper, and cilantro on hand. I'm obsessed with red pepper - it makes everything better!

And I looooove chili! Does that count as a favorite soup?

redhead75 said...

Mmm...I don't know the name of my favorite soup?? It's got ground beef, stock, stewed tomatoes, pasta, mixed veggies and ketchup. I'll find the recipe and send it to ya!

Never tried frozen spices? I don't buy fresh ones either...i suck.

Brooke said...

When I was at home I was OBSESSED with basil and put it on/in everything! And my favorite soup has to be split pea!! I am obsessed with it! OR a delicious black bean soupa!

Meredith said...

Hope you feel better! I love Ashlee's tomato soup.
http://ashleescooking.blogspot.com/2009/01/smoky-tomato-soup-with-pancetta-crisps.html

But instead of pancetta I use cooked turkey bacon.

I love his soup! Husband loves it too! I always make extra for me to take to work.

Julie said...

I have never tried frozen spices but that sounds like a brilliant idea =) When I get back home I will have to stock up. I have enjoyed incorporating cumin into some recipes. I have made a tomato black bean soup a while back which was pretty darn good, cumin and all!

Kelly Drawdy said...

My favorite soup is usually tomato soup (not from the red and white can but homemade). I also love a great vegetable soup (very basic, but yummy) and I made a salsa stoup (rachael ray recipe) once and loved it! Lentil soup is also another fav and taco soup is a winter must soup (chili too!)... I can keep going if you need more ideas! haha. Didn't know I liked soup so much. I would love the frozen herbs, those are cool. I like fresh (I grow rosemary, cilantro, basil, thyme, mint, etc so I usually use the fresh ones)! FEEL BETTER!!!!

april said...

I hope you feel better!!

wholebodylove said...

I have never tried frozen spices but I like the convenience factor. I love soups when the weather gets chilly! Split pea, chilli.. Oh and I've seen some tasty-looking soup recipes using pumpkin around the blog world lately. Those look awesome!

Mica said...

Both of those recipes sound really good.

I'm a big fan of cilantro, though I've never tried it frozen. (Harrison is one of those anti-cilantro people, so cilantro cubes probably wouldn't go over well with him.)

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

The meals sound great! I love that you make new recipes all the time!

I have to try the frozen cilantro! I have a basil plant, and I always have fresh garlic around. But I often wish I had some cilantro...

I love tomato soup, and black bean soup, and carrot/ginger soup... I'm so glad that it's "soup season!"

Hope you'll be all better soon!

Pam said...

Sorry you aren't feeling well - hope you are better tomorrow. Both the calzone and soup look terrific. I've never tried frozen spices but hear they are terrific. My very favorite soup is French onion. Mmmm.

saundra said...

Good call on staying home on Tuesday, as traffic was a nightmare again!!! (So happy the rain finally stopped.) And it sounds like you needed the rest- hope you are feeling better.

That calzone recipe looks and sounds de-vine!!! I am going to try it tonight. Thanks for posting it.

Carrie Lidzy said...

flu is going around like crazy! so if you continue to not feel well i would def. see a doctor

Anne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anne said...

Um. That Calzone looks amazing.

As for spices, I use Cilantro a lot and I had a Basil plant but I killed it. I am going to attempt a spice garden next year. We'll see how it goes.

Those frozen spices a probably really useful. I hate buying a thing of cilantro and then throwing out half.

As for soup...Taco Soup. Mmmmm.

Hope you feel better soon!

Diane, Fit to the Finish said...

I love calzones! And that soup you made looks amazing! My favorite soup is probably minestrone. I have a great homemade Italian bread I make with it - yum!

I hope you feel better soon!

inmytummy said...

Hope you are feeling better today! Sometimes taking a day off really helps.

I've bought that frozen cilantro before. I think they have frozen basil there too.

Both of those recipes look great. I think I will try the calzones. I think Jason would really like it.

Every Gym's Nightmare said...

im a big fan of dried spices. probably because they are so cheap, lol

fittingbackin said...

Angie: It seems so, right? I heard it was too! Thanks - we're fans! I love red pepper too and of course - chili counts!! Yum!

Redhead75: oooh that sounds good! Please do! haha

Brooke: Basil is the bomb dot com - it's my favorite fresh spice! ooooh Black Bean soup is good!

Meredith: oooh thanks for the link and the bacon substitute - smart!

Julie: I'm a cumin fan too! I usually use it with cayenne pepper in spicy dishes - yum!

Kelly: WOW - you're full of ideas! "I didn't know I liked soup that much" haha I didn't know you grew your own! Smart! I just have the basil plant but want to start a herb garden so bad!

April: Thanks!

Wholebodylove: I've been seeing a lot of pumpkin, too! I've never eaten pumpkin!

Mica: who is he?! How can he not like cilantro! haha

Andrea: Thanks! I try. :) SAme here - it's one of thsoe that is hard to keep around! I'm so glad it's soup season, too. :)

Pam: Thanks! So glad you think so! I've never had french onion - it always looks so good though!

Saundra: I am feeling better - thank you! I hope you try it and like it!!

Carrie: I'm already feeling better! Thanks though, you're right, i'm a fan of hitting up the doctor if i'm sick!

Anne: Thanks!! Oh let's do a spice garden together next year!! Taco soup is yummy!!!

Diane: Thanks - oooh homemade Italian bread - YUM!

Inmytummy: I hope you try it and he likes it! We're fans. :) Taking a day off DID help - I feel so recharged!

Everygym's nightmare: oh yeah - dried spices are the best! I really only use fresh if a recipe has very few ingredients!

fittingbackin said...

Angie: It seems so, right? I heard it was too! Thanks - we're fans! I love red pepper too and of course - chili counts!! Yum!

Redhead75: oooh that sounds good! Please do! haha

Brooke: Basil is the bomb dot com - it's my favorite fresh spice! ooooh Black Bean soup is good!

Meredith: oooh thanks for the link and the bacon substitute - smart!

Julie: I'm a cumin fan too! I usually use it with cayenne pepper in spicy dishes - yum!

Kelly: WOW - you're full of ideas! "I didn't know I liked soup that much" haha I didn't know you grew your own! Smart! I just have the basil plant but want to start a herb garden so bad!

April: Thanks!

Wholebodylove: I've been seeing a lot of pumpkin, too! I've never eaten pumpkin!

Mica: who is he?! How can he not like cilantro! haha

Andrea: Thanks! I try. :) SAme here - it's one of thsoe that is hard to keep around! I'm so glad it's soup season, too. :)

Pam: Thanks! So glad you think so! I've never had french onion - it always looks so good though!

Saundra: I am feeling better - thank you! I hope you try it and like it!!

Carrie: I'm already feeling better! Thanks though, you're right, i'm a fan of hitting up the doctor if i'm sick!

Anne: Thanks!! Oh let's do a spice garden together next year!! Taco soup is yummy!!!

Diane: Thanks - oooh homemade Italian bread - YUM!

Inmytummy: I hope you try it and he likes it! We're fans. :) Taking a day off DID help - I feel so recharged!

Everygym's nightmare: oh yeah - dried spices are the best! I really only use fresh if a recipe has very few ingredients!

Diane, Fit to the Finish said...

I love calzones! And that soup you made looks amazing! My favorite soup is probably minestrone. I have a great homemade Italian bread I make with it - yum!

I hope you feel better soon!

Mica said...

Both of those recipes sound really good.

I'm a big fan of cilantro, though I've never tried it frozen. (Harrison is one of those anti-cilantro people, so cilantro cubes probably wouldn't go over well with him.)

Andrea@WellnessNotes said...

The meals sound great! I love that you make new recipes all the time!

I have to try the frozen cilantro! I have a basil plant, and I always have fresh garlic around. But I often wish I had some cilantro...

I love tomato soup, and black bean soup, and carrot/ginger soup... I'm so glad that it's "soup season!"

Hope you'll be all better soon!

wholebodylove said...

I have never tried frozen spices but I like the convenience factor. I love soups when the weather gets chilly! Split pea, chilli.. Oh and I've seen some tasty-looking soup recipes using pumpkin around the blog world lately. Those look awesome!