Category Archives: Quick Snacks

Five New Habits This Month

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Weight Release Update #2 – They say that it takes 21 days to change a habit. This is Day21 for me in changing how I workout, eat and look at releasing the extra pounds I put on in 2012. Here are five of the habits that I’ve been working hard at changing this month…

  1. Eat Less – Move More. My weight-release philosophy is quite simple, it was shared with me by my mother ,and my older sister. That’s it – Eat Less, Move More.
    I’m by no means a fitness or nutrition guru, but I’ve picked up my fair share of tips over the past 41 years. I’m happy to share my “ah-ha moments” with you over the coming weeks/months of my personal journey. The retirees at the mall show me every day that if I get moving NOW… I’ll keep moving well into my 60s, 70s and 80s. I want to live to be 100, so I know that I’ve got to get active, and stay active every day between now and then.
  2. The Sigg Bottle Is Your Friend. I usually don’t stock juice in our fridge. My husband and I prefer to use our 1L Sigg bottles and to drink water (tap water), either straight-up, or with a squeeze of organic lemon juice, or with Mio/Crystal Light. I changed my juice-habit many years ago, so I find it quite easy to drink 2 to 3 litres of water per day. When I’m walking I carry a Sigg bottle of very cold water to hydrate me throughout my workout. Yes… I CAN drink water and walk at the same time!Of note, I have heard that most of the time when you think you’re hungry, your body is actually thirsty. So I try to drink a glass of water, instead of opening the fridge and grabbing a snack. But if I’m still hungry after that, I try to keep some healthy snacks of pre-cut fruit/veggies front and centre in my fridge. I like the meal plan where you eat 6 smaller meals a day.

    1L Sigg bottles are your best friend. I have a few and place them around the house for easy access to my water, great for traveling too.

    1L Sigg bottles are your best friend. I have a few and place them around the house for easy access to my water, great for traveling too.

  3. Make Breakfast Simple. I switched back to a weight-release-proven smoothie recipe using Lean Fit’s Whey Protein Powder, Frozen Berries (Strawberries or Blueberries), Agave Nectar and Skim Milk. One of my girlfriends shared this trick with me last year while she was shaping up, and it totally worked for her. You can read more about how to make that smoothie recipe on one of my previous blog posts. These smoothies taste very much like a milkshake if you blend them long enough.If you detest the grittiness of a typical protein shake, then this is the right brand of protein powder for you. This powder does not contain fibre, plus as a bonus, it’s low-carb (2g). And how else can you ingest 25g of protein first thing in the morning? I find having a high protein breakfast keeps me fuller, longer during the day. I get mine at Costco for about $40 for a 2kg container, which lasts me 2+ months. And when I’m busy writing, or running off to afternoon meetings, I’ll sometimes have a smoothie for lunch, but not very often.
  4. Downsize Your Dinner Plate. We have been using these Correlle Stoneware plates for many years. This year I decide that instead of using the 11.5 inch dinner plate for eating supper off of each night, that my husband and I would begin using the 8.5 inch lunch plate instead. We also focus on eating 3:1 vegetables to meat, or 2/3 of the plates for healthy veggies or salad, and 1/3 of the plate for protein.

    Bigger is NOT better. Our portion control is out of whack in North America. Focus on using plates that are 9-inches or smaller for your meals.

    Bigger is NOT better. Our portion control is out of whack in North America. Focus on using plates that are 9-inches or smaller for your meals.

  5. Don’t Deprive Yourself. You don’t need to deprive yourself of your favourite meal, snack, or treat/dessert – you just need to remember to eat in moderation. My weakness is pretzels, but I can allow myself ONE serving size of 13 pretzels as a snack every once in awhile. I’ve portioned them out to cut down on my mindless eating while watching my favourite show.
    Yes, you CAN have a treat every once in awhile, in moderation. Try portioned out your snacks, or just one treat, like a truffle.

    Yes, you CAN have a treat every once in awhile, in moderation. Try portioned out your snacks, or just one treat, like a truffle.

    As a chocoholic, you bet your bottom dollar that I’m not giving up my truffles! I allow myself one truffle, every few days when I have a sweets craving.By the way, did you know that LunchFor1.com is hosting Winnipeg’s 1st Annual Chocoholics’ Buffet at The Gates on Roblin Ballroom. This fundraiser benefiting the United Way of Winnipeg is an all-you-can-eat dessert bar of the very best chocolate desserts that our local chefs have to offer. If you’re interested in attending, you can buy tickets online here and join us on Saturday, April 20th, 2013.

    Winnipeg's 1st Annual Chocoholics' Buffet - This is a No Calorie Zone

    One night of indulgence! I’ll be working out hard between now and April 20th so that I can enjoy all the goodies.

    So enjoy my Weight Release Updates in addition to my healthier LunchFor1 posts. I hope that my suggestions can help you to shed a few pounds in the coming months of 2013. Please feel free to  share your own success stories and tips in the comments area below. Or keep me posted on your own progress via Twitter (@LunchFor1), on my Facebook Page, or by subscribing and following me on my blog.

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Weight Release Update #3
Five Things You Can Easily Switch & Lose For Good
(coming soon)

Mexi-Chicken Crescent Rolls

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So I took the plunged and picked up some Pillsbury Crescent Rolls during my weekly grocery excursion. And today I decided was the day to finally make an attempt at one of Pinterest’s most Pinned recipes using the crescent rolls.

These Mexi-Chicken Crescent Rolls were SO delicious, and got two thumbs up from my husband!

These Mexi-Chicken Crescent Rolls were SO delicious, and got two thumbs up from my husband!

As I love all things Mexican, it seemed a
natural choice to create a Mexi-Chicken stuffing.

These were so easy and quick to make for a simple Saturday lunch. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did.

These were so easy and quick to make for a simple Saturday lunch. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did.

Mexi-Chicken Crescent Rolls

(makes 8 rolls)

1 tube Grands Pillsbury Crescent Rolls

1 Chicken Breast, uncooked

½ cup Spicy Clamato Juice (or Tomato Juice)

2 tbsp. Spicy Salsa

¾ cup Light Mayo

1/3 cup Sharp Cheddar Cheese, fine-grated

1/8 cup Jalapeno Peppers, minced
Taco Seasoning

Salt & Pepper

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  1. Slice your chicken breast into strips.
  2. Cook the chicken slices in non-stick frying pan (no oil) for 3 minutes each side. Sprinkle ½ tsp. of each – taco seasoning, salt and pepper over the slices.
  3. When flipping the chicken, add the salsa and juice to the pan. Cook for 2 more minutes.
  4. Remove chicken from pan, and dice it into very small bite-sized pieces, and let cool.
  5. Preheat oven to 375*F.
  6. Mix together mayo, cheese, jalapenos, and cooled chicken pieces in a bowl, add a bit of the cooked salsa/tomato liquid for flavour, about 1 tbsp will do the trick.
  7. Open and unwrap your crescent rolls. Cut each triangle length-wise to form two, long triangles.
  8. Place one teaspoon of your chicken mixture on the wider end of each triangle. I like to use my “Martha” gelato scoop for this step.
  9. Roll up each triangle from wide to narrow end, and place on a cookie sheet with Silpat or sprayed with Pam cooking spray. I sprinkled my crescent rolls with poppy seeds for decoration.
  10. Bake for 14 minutes. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes. And enjoy!

This made for a very impressive lunch for hubby and I yesterday. I’ll definitely be making these again. Finally I understand what all the fuss was about on Pinterest in regards to these stuffed crescent rolls.

What do you use Pillsbury Crescent Rolls for?
Please feel free to share your Comments below.

Super Easy Salsa

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One of the potluck items I was constantly being asked to bring to work by my co-workers years ago was my Epicure Selections’ Poco Picante Salsa. This SUPER easy Salsa recipe is great for a quick snack, or to add spiciness to any dish you have on the stove for dinner.

This salsa is SO easy and SO delicious that you won't ever buy pre-made salsa again

This salsa is SO easy and SO delicious that you won’t buy pre-made salsa again

Super Easy Salsa

1 – 796mL can Diced Tomatoes

Juice of 1/2 Fresh Lime

2 tbsp Epicure Selections Poco Picante Salsa Mix

Nacho Chips

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1. Drain the can of tomatoes, but catch the tomato juice
as it’s great to cook rice in tomorrow.

2. Place tomatoes, salsa mix and the lime juice into
your food processor and pulse 5 times.

3. Re-drain the salsa one more time, and serve.

It’s really that easy.

Other uses for this salsa…

– Add to cooked rice or quinoa to create a spicy side dish

– Use with your favourite Mexican recipes like my Beef Tacos

– Use as a pasta sauce for a spicy, Italian-Mexican fusion dish

– Marinade and cook chicken breasts in this Salsa

– Use at breakfast with your favourite egg dish

What do you love Salsa on top of?
Are you a fan of the hot stuff? Or do you prefer a more mild Salsa?

3-2-1 Mug Cake: A Super Easy Mid-day Dessert

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I love cake, don’t you? I just don’t love all the dishes it takes to bake one. And with just the two of us… one cake is WAAAAAY more than we need to eat in any given week.

Earlier in the year I found out about how to make Mug Cake at home. Now I can make CakeFor1 or two, and here’s how you can too!

Take one Betty Crocker Super Moist Cake Mix and one Betty Crocker Angel Food Mix in any flavours or combinations you want. I chose chocolate, but we’ve already used up the vanilla! Mix them together in a large resealable container.

So simple! Mix together two cake mixes and have it ready to go - anytime.

So simple! Mix together two cake mixes and have it ready to go – anytime.

1. Use a regular sized coffee mug.

2. Add 3 tablespoons of your “Mug Cake Mix”.

Easy Chocolate Mug Cake in 3-2-1

Easy Chocolate Mug Cake in 3-2-1

3. Add 2 tablespoons of water, and stir until combined with a spoon or small whisk.
You could also use milk or any liquid I’m sure.

4. Microwave on high for 1 minute.
Caution… don’t try to bake more than 2 mugs at a time though.

Microwave for just one minute and voila! You've got cake.

Microwave for just one minute and voila! You’ve got cake.

5. Let cool for one minute, but be ready to eat it right away as it does not like to hang around to be eaten later.

6. Garnish with whatever you have on hand. I used white chocolate chips and chocolate sundae syrup.

7. Tuck your container of 3-2-1 Mug Cake Mix back in your cupboard for future use.

An amazingly simple dessert that even a non-baker can make in minutes

An amazingly simple dessert that even a non-baker can make in minutes

Suggestions for garnishes and flavour combinations…

* Use vanilla cake, strawberries and whipped cream from a can to create very fast Strawberry Shortcakes. Also great with ANY fruit or berry!
* Use prepared icing, which keeps so well in your fridge, to frost your Mug Cake.
* If you have an Epicure Selections Frother, you can make thick, fat-free whipped cream out of Skim Milk. Flavour it with any liqueur you have on hand, like Frangelico.
* Add bananas, butterscotch and a small scoop of ice cream for a unique Sundae-style Mug Cake.
* Use canned cherry pie filling, chocolate whipped cream and chocolate shavings to create a Black Forest Mug Cake.

How will you top your Mug Cake?
Please feel free to share your own personal combinations below.

Spicy Marinated Mushrooms – A Great Holiday Appetizers

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At this time of year it’s a great idea to have a few last-minute appetizers to pull out of your fridge to wow unexpected guests. These marinated mushrooms are super easy to make, and hold well for 3 to 5 days in the fridge, or can try canning them for a longer-lasting product.

Tender, spicy mushrooms for the fungi-fan in your family

Tender, spicy mushrooms for the fungi-fan in your family

Spicy Marinated Mushrooms

1/2 bag White Button Mushrooms, small
2 teaspoons Salt
1/2 Cup Olive Oil
3 tablespoons Rice Vinegar
5 Garlic Cloves, thinly sliced
3 Green Onions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons Soy Sauce, Low-Sodium
1 teaspoon Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
1 teaspoon Sriracha (or more)

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1. Boil a large pot of salted water.

2. Place the mushrooms whole into the boiling water for 7 minutes.
I do not recommend washing your mushrooms until just before you are going to cook them – a light washing is fine. I scrub mine 4 at a time in my hands under running water.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, garlic, green onions, soy sauce, red pepper flakes, and sririacha.

3. Once the mushrooms are done boiling, drain them, and place them into a large resealable container.

4. Pour the liquid over the mushrooms, stir together, and cover with the lid.

5. Let your container sit on your kitchen counter to cool.
Allow the mushrooms to begin their marinading process at room temperature for a couple of hours.

6. Then you can refrigerate your mushrooms, and use as needed.

7. Create an Antipasto Platter by adding Roasted Red Peppers and Roasted Garlic. Serve the mushrooms with on a platter with room-temperature cheeses, deli meats and crackers or baguette.

TIP: The spicy taste is great!!! For a more intense flavour, pull the mushroom stems out of the caps before boiling which will allow the marinade to permeate into the mushroom from the inside.

These little, succulent snacks go well with any appetizer spread

These little, succulent snacks will go well with any appetizer spread you can dream up this Holiday season

Other Uses…

* Diced the marinated mushrooms up and use as a condiment on burgers or beef dip sandwiches.
* Mince them up to use as a mushroom tapenade on french bread.
* Pop off the stems, and pipe in some soft cheese like Boursin for a fancier appetizer.
* They’d be a great accompaniment to any steak.
* Excellent choice for use in any salad, especially to dress up a Caesar salad with fresh tomatoes.

What do YOU like to have with these mushrooms?
Please feel free to share your uses below in the Comments section.

5-Minute Peel&Eat Shrimp

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5-Minute Peel&Eat Shrimp

Today is a very cold day in Winnipeg (woke up to -18*C). I was a “nice wife” and let my dear hubby take the car downtown to his office instead of taking the bus in the brrrr temps. So it was time to get creative for Lunch for One. Plus, I wanted to feel like I’d escaped the land-locked centre of Canada by pretending I was eating Peel&Eat Shrimp down on the warm Gulf of Mexico.

Firstly, there was no way I wanted to peel all a pound of 70/90 count shrimp before I cooked them, thus the need for an easier solution. I was also still hungry after my usual morning bowl of Cheerios, so I knew that I needed to bump up my protein intake today. Bacon was my 1st protein choice… but I’m trying to eat healthier, and to “release” some of the post-surgery weight I’ve gained. So a good ol’ fashioned shrimp boil seemed like a perfect choice!

However, I have to admit that I’ve never boiled shrimp before – I usually fry them in garlic butter. But I love the juicy shrimp rings that you eat at cocktail parties at this time of year, so I thought I’d try creating a flavourful water bath for the little guys, and here is what I came up with on the fly…

Boil – Cook – Drain – Chill – Drain – Serve

My Easy and Quick How-To:

1lb of 70/90 count unpeeled shrimp (thawed in cold water)

1/2tsp of each:
sea salt
whole peppercorns
dehydrated minced onion
red chili pepper flakes

1 star anise pod
2 bay leaves

NOTE: Double the spices if you use three or more pounds of shrimp for a party.

1. Bring the water to a boil in a small pot, with the spices. Add shrimp and cook for 90 seconds.

2. Drain in strainer. Place shrimp in an ice bath. Drain shrimp. Pick out shrimp from spices and ice cubes.

3. Serve with a store-bought tangy cocktail sauce, and enjoy! You’ll never want to buy pre-cooked shrimp again.

Healthy and Easy Lunch for One

TIP: If you are doing large quantities for a party, I’d suggest finding yourself some cheesecloth and tying up the spices in a spice bag for a quicker cleanup.

Here’s a link to My Recipe TV’s Youtube video on How to Make a Spice Bag.

Please let me know how you experimented with this recipe, and/or how you boil shrimp – wherever you may be.