Monday, March 21, 2011

Greek Food, Confessions, and Celebrations!!!

Well, it's been a while since I've blogged.  Life is keeping me super busy and by the time I get home at night, I have slim to no brain power left...hence no blogging.  I sorry...  :-(

BUT...This one is full of different stuff, hence the title!!  :-)

First things recipe!  Greek style!  I LOVE love love Greek food.  I found this McCormick brand recipe in a magazine a few weeks ago and have been meaning to try it, but just got around to making it today.  It's really easy and pretty quick too. 

1lb extra lean ground beef (I use 93/7, but you can use which ever ratio floats your beef boat!)
1/2 cup chopped onion (I like onion, so I used one whole cup)
2 tsp. oregano leaves (I used only 1tsp--I'll explain why in a second)
1tsp ground cinnamon (1/2 tsp would've been plenty, I think)
1tsp garlic powder
1 can (14.5oz) reduced sodium beef broth
1 can (14.5oz) diced tomatoes, undrained (I bought Italian style with oregano & basil which is why I only used 1tsp of dried oregano leaves)
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 1/2 cups UNCOOKED whole grain penne pasta
1 1/2 cups of frozen chopped spinach, thawed (I used 4-5 cups of fresh baby spinach)
3/4 cup crumpled feta cheese

Spray pan with cooking spray and preheat over medium heat.  Chop onion.  Cook onion alone for just a couple of minutes to get it just softened. 

Add ground beef.  Cook until meat is done.  Drain excess fat.

  Add oregano, cinnamon, and garlic powder.  Mix well and cook for a couple of minutes.

Stir in broth, tomatoes and tomato paste.

Bring to a boil.  Stir in the uncooked penne pasta.

Reduce heat, cover and cook for 7 minutes.  Stir in spinach and feta cheese.

Cook about 2 more minutes and then turn the heat off and cover the dish.  Allow to stand about five minutes so the carry over cooking will finish the pasta. 

Serve in whichever way works for you and your family~!!  Since I am single, I divide all of my big dishes into 1 cup containers and pop them in the freezer or refrigerator.

Verdict:  Its good and it has pretty great stats, but I would use just 1/2 tsp of cinnamon next time.  Just a personal preference of taste.

Okay, moving on.  I need to confess something.  I have been messing up lately.  Remember that slippery slope I talked about before?  I managed to find my way back to it last week.  It started when I went to breakfast at McDonalds with a friend.  I could have made a better choice, but I decided to get the chicken biscuit combo.  :-(  Shame on me.  Then, before I knew it I was stopping for fast food just about daily.  I was eating a bunch of junk too.  Chips, candy, and snack cakes.  Clearly, not the greatest choices.  HOWEVER.  Today is a new day and I am not going to beat myself up about it.  I am back to eating healthy and making good choices.  I am struggling to get in enough calories today (and I was having the same issue before I went on a junk food binge), but I know I have to listen to my own advice and take it one bite and one choice at a time.  Obesity is going to be a life long battle for me and I REFUSE to let it beat me anymore. 

Moving on again... to something totally awesome and exciting~~!!!

Guess what I did this past Friday?  I took the Zumba Basics Level 1 training class and I got my license to teach classes!!! 

Yippppppiiiiie!  I absolutely LOVE Zumba and can't wait to start teaching my own classes.  I still have lots of work to do before I get my own classes up and running, but I am working on it!  I am so grateful to have made so many new friends in the Indy Zumba community!  It still seems surreal to me that I am a LICENSED FITNESS INSTRUCTOR...!!!  What, who?  Me?  Really?  Who'da ever thunk it?  Definitely, not me!  But, I am so happy about it and looking forward to what Zumba is going to bring to my life!!

Live, Love, ZUMBA~!!!!!

Till next time....

Lots of Love,


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