Friday, February 28, 2014

Vacation! Definitely Not Eating Right!

We had a wonderful cruise and ate a lot of good food. Below is the food we remembered to take pictures of. We got so excited when it got to the table, we didn't take a photo.

We had some good stuff, some pretty good stuff and some outstanding stuff.
Warm Chocolate Melting Cake. Super fudgy and delicious. We will be making this for a potluck coming up. Cake on top and a warm, pudding/cake underneath.

New York style cheesecake with a strawberry sauce.

Stuffed mushrooms, not bad, a little underwhelming.

Not even sure what this is! Looks like some onion rings & potato chips...maybe hush puppies???

The lobster tail & garlic shrimp. To be honest, the shrimp were better than the lobster. They were awesome & garlicky! John ordered an extra one for the shrimp alone.

Souvenir drink...Tasty!

Battered shrimp & fish fillets.

Redfish. This was really good.

This is a chile rellano.  I'd never had one whole like this before. And the rice on the side was pretty good.

Chicken with a parmesean alfredo sauce.  Good stuff!

Eggs benedict for breakfast, with a side of corned beef hash.

Some beef & chicken fajitas for lunch during our excursion in Cozumel.

John opted for the steak tacos.

And the steamed grouper...really tasty!

Time for a "Boom-Boom" shot with lunch!

Jo even danced at dinner with our waiter, Zuban!

This is the fruit plate with cottage cheese. Mostly fruit...and about a teaspoon of cottage cheese!

Banana cream pie...

Salted caramel cheesecake...very tasty!

French onion soup...


We had a wonderful time and ate LOTS of great food. Now, back to reality, and TRYING to eat right, MOST of the time!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Best Ribs I've EVER Eaten!

Last night we went to the Memphis Barbeque Company for dinner. It is owned by a Barbeque pitmaster and "the winningest woman in barbeque".

Now we know why.  It was amazing!  First they brought fresh pork rinds to the table. They were like crispy bacon. I've never liked pork rinds but I realized last night that I wasn't eating good ones. 

Here we are so happy. Even after an hour wait. 

John had the spare ribs, turkey and brisket with fries and Mac and cheese. 

I had baby back ribs with chicken and sausage. I chose Mac and cheese and grits for my sides. I am now officially in love with grits. 

This selection made it so we got most of the meats in Pitmaster Sampler. That way we could share. It was all good. 

The ribs however were incredible. Cooked perfectly and spiced like nothing I have ever eaten. 

We bought rub to bring home. We waited an hour to get in and John said he would have waited two. It was that good. 

Great start to vacation!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Road Trip Food!!

When I was a kid we took a road trip from Iowa to Utah. It was a long trip and being on the lower end of the income scale, my parents brought snacks along. It was a treat to get to eat in the car and we soon downed all the snacks brought along. 

Among the snacks that stand out in my memory were Pepsi, (which was warm) ham sandwiches and trail mix. As we cruised along in the wood paneled station wagon something magical happened. Dark magic. This combination of food caused gas. Terrible, horrible, no good gas!

This is the only picture I could find of the car. 

We are going on a road trip to New Orleans in the morning to get on a cruise ship. It will be seven people in a van, so John and I made snacks for the road. The first being, of course, trail mix.

I had peanuts left from Christmas, added sunflower seeds, raisins, sesame sticks and M&Ms. 

We got some of John's favorite cheddar, peanut butter crackers. These have been a vacation staple for us. John also made a batch of his party mix.  

Then we made breakfast burritos, here is a video of John demonstrating his rolling technique.

We have enough for two each and a couple extra if someone is extra hungry.

Soda will go in the cooler, coffee in the travel mug and we will be on the road at six. Chris and Stevie will be here holding down the fort. We are ready!!

Thursday, February 13, 2014

The Great Pantry Project Recap

Now the project is over. We were well within our $30 budget, which saved us at least $50 a week.

First the before and after in the pantry.

 The shelf by the fridge.

The little pantry. We rearranged it a little.


Finally the freezer! Here is the before.

And the after.

I'm thinking we could have done this for a few more weeks. But we won't!  We went out to dinner to celebrate a successful project.  We had mushrooms!

And pizza.

Then John couldn't resist going to see the meat specials!

We did learn some things. We probably won't be making so many trips to the grocery store in the future. I think we will be more likely to eat what we have. We got pretty creative in these six weeks.
Now my freezer needs to be filled with meat specials!!!

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Day 42! The Last Day!

Today is the last day!  We made it six weeks and our last meal from the pantry/freezer was chicken vegetable soup. John threw it in the crock pot. After the 6 weeks, the only soup we have left in the freezer is one container of beef stew. Maybe tomorrow night???? Nah....we'll save it!
I make homemade chicken broth from the chicken backs cut out of whole chickens that we cut up for frying. Once I have 3 of them in the freezer, we can made broth. I throw them and a rotisserie chicken carcass into the pressure cooker, cover it with water, and cook for an hour. Remove the bones, and pick the meat off. Strain the broth and put it into the soup pot. Add the chicken meat, a bag of frozen vegetables (I like the corn,peas,beans,carrots mixture), a couple diced up potatoes, a couple more cut carrots, and a couple tablespoons of chicken base. Add water to fill up the pot and simmer for a couple hours. Leftovers freeze great, and I usually get about 3 containers to freeze. 

He also added some noodles to make it really hearty.
Just some cut up fettuccine...

I added some crackers to soak up that tasty broth.

Tomorrow we will summarize the six weeks. But first I think John is already making a list of all those meat deals he needs to pick up!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Day 41: Pizza and Chicken!

Some of you may remember Shakey's. Back in the day it was the premier pizza buffet. They had an awesome crispy crust and great flavor. My dad was addicted to Shakey's and would sometimes sneak there alone. I remember one day he was waiting in line to pay when my sister's class came in for lunch during a field trip. She asked him what he was doing there. Dad just muttered something about making sure she had enough money and scooted out disappointed.

John has been having a craving for the closest we have which is Pizza Ranch. He loves the combo of pizza and chicken. Not able to wait, he decided to make it a Pizza Ranch night.

He got the chicken ready.

Got the frozen pepperoni pizza out and added some sausage and cheese.

I was at the table chatting when John exclaimed, "Holy Schneickies!" I hustled to the oven to see what had happened. When John's sister was little, she called any bubbles on a pizza, hippopotamuses. This was the Granddaddy of Hippos!

John stabbed it a few times to settle it down.  Then we were ready for our Pizza Ranch night.

Good thing the freezer & pantry project is ending soon, because we are out of pizza, and only have 2 chicken legs left!