Posted in Diet, Hungry Girl

Hungry Girl: First aid, Fire Alarms and Chaos Galore!!!

Dishes used: 21
Fire Alarms: 1
Fingers burnt: 1 thumb
Igniting Stovetop Flames: 1
Matt’s Annoyance Level: 4

Well, let’s just say it was an interesting Hungry Girl Evening.  Once again, we set off the smoke alarm.  (Last time we did it while making the Fries).  I burned my thumb when attempting to flip hash browns in a skillet.  Hash browns don’t flip.  Diana almost set me on fire when she discovered the flammable properties of cooking spray.  And Matthew looked at us in annoyance when he had to once again clear the smoke from the apartment.

Now I am sure you are wondering what recipes could possibly lead to such an eventful evening.  We’ll tell you: Snazzy Spanish Omelette, Butternut Hash Browns, and Chunky Apple Cinnamon Muffins.

Chunky Apple Cinnamon Muffins: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 278, 127 calories per serving)  This was the only recipe that didn’t give us any trouble.  Everything worked out according to the directions except we did have enough to make 6 muffins instead of 4.  Perhaps if you dice the apples instead of cutting them into cubes like we did, it will make the 4 serving recipe.  They were good, nonetheless.  We would recommend using foil muffin cups instead of paper cups.

Snazzy Spanish Omelette: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 60, 191 calories per serving) The sauce is simple to make but we felt we didn’t need such a large portion.  We would recommend adding some of the veggies to the omelette mixture instead of the sauce.  Diana says she wouldn’t even bother with the sauce.  She would put all of the veggies in the omelette and just put the two tablespoons of salsa on top.   So this was a fairly simple recipe.  Of course we had an omelette pan that Diana’s mother left behind on accident.  It might be more difficult if you don’t have an omelette pan.

Diana’s advice: If you have a gas stove, don’t spray the aerosol cooking spray near the open flame.  You just might set your best friend on fire or at the very least scare the crap out of her.

We would also like to point out that one serving could actually feed two.  This makes for one large omelette.

Butternut Hash Browns: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 92, 104 calories per serving)  This was the most eventful and challenging recipe of the evening.  Perhaps, in hindsight, we should have throughly read the recipe before we began.  We missed the “tip” on shredding the butternut squash with a cheese grater.  We used a vegetable peeler.  It didn’t affect the taste but it probably would have assisted with the ease in other parts of the recipe.  We also discovered that you should attempt to make 3 recipes at a time or 3 servings at a time.  You really need to do one serving at a time if you want to the recipe following the directions written in the book.  After setting off the smoke alarm and burning my thumb while attempting to flip 3 servings of hash browns in a skillet, we decided to put it all into a pyrex dish and bake it in the oven.  Diana set the oven at 350 degrees while I tended to my now blistering thumb.  We baked it around 7 minutes–after we had already cooked a portion of it on the stove.  So maybe bake it for 5 minutes, flip it, and bake for another 5 minutes.

Even though the recipe made for an interesting evening, it did taste like real hash browns.  This is something I personally might try to do again to see if I can perfect it.

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Posted in Diet, Hungry Girl

Hungry Girl Weekend #3

Tonight, we decided to make it a Manwich night–Hungry Girl style.  We picked three recipes – Sloppy Janes, Zesty Italian Pita Chips, and Freezy-cool whoopie pie. 

We made our grocery list and set out to get everything we needed.  We specifically went to Vons because we needed VitaTops (Muffin Tops) and their website said they carried them.  No one there had ever heard of them.  So then we went off to Whole Foods–they had never heard of them either.  So it looks like we are going to have to order these from the VitaTops website and save the recipe for another time.  Thankfully we found everything else that we needed for the other two recipes.

Sloppy Janes (Hungry Girl, Pg. 130, 271 calories) – Diana and I both agreed that we highly recommend this recipe.  It is very easy to make.  We do suggest that you use the whole can of the no-salt-added tomato sauce.  It’s weird to just leave a small amount in the can.  We didn’t want to let it go to waste.  We also suggest adding a little chili powder to give it a little more flavor.  Overall, it’s a great recipe that serves five so you can freeze if you are single like me, or get the whole family to eat it if you share a home with someone besides your cat.

Zesty Italian Pita Chips (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 125, 163 calories, 3 weight watchers points) – This was the perfect subsitute for Potato Chips to go with our Sloppy Janes.  Our suggestion would be to make a little more of the spread or dip the pitas in salsa.  We dipped them in our leftover tomato sauce and that just didn’t do the trick.  We agreed, along with Diana’s husband, that we should try these with some salsa.  This is definitely something that is easy to make and would be good to have at a gathering of sorts.

Posted in Diet, Hungry Girl

Hungry Girl Weekend #2

This weekend we decided to have a theme–mexican recipes with American flavor.  We chose all of our recipes from the Hungry Girl 200 under 200 recipe book. 

We chose an appetizer–Holy Moly Guacamole; a meal–Cheeseburger Quesadilla; and a dessert–Strawberry Shortcake Bites.

Holy Moly Guacamole: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 112)  This tastes just like guacamole but it is only 78 calories per serving and 1 weight watchers point.  The secret ingredient–peas.  You still add an avocado but the majority of the mixture is peas.  I know because I mashed them up.  Diana and I vowed not to tell her husband Matt since he doesn’t like vegetables.  He ate the guacamole.  I even tested it out on some other friends and they all loved it.  They couldn’t believe I used peas.  So this is a definite score–a must have for parties and Wii Weekends.

Cheeseburger Quesadilla: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 182) Another amazing recipe where you would never guess the ingredients unless you were the one who made it.  It tasted like a cheeseburger wrapped in a tortilla.  I even added ketchup to further decieve my tastebuds.  A 186 calorie cheeseburger made without meat–Amazing!  I don’t know about you but whenever I used to see the Boca Meatless burgers in the grocerer’s freezer, I thought they looked scary.  What is a meatless burger?  I still don’t really know but it tasted good.  So try this recipe and don’t tell your friends, family, or significant others what you used.  See what they think?  See if you can decieve their tastebuds.

Strawberry Shortcake Bites: (Hungry Girl 200 under 200, Pg. 256)  This is an 88 calorie dessert that tastes like one of those strawberry ice cream/frozen yogurt bars.  The only thing that we would suggest is using mini muffin cups.  In the large muffin cup, the cool whip mixture engulfs the vanilla wafer that is supposed to serve as the crust.  So this one we still want to play around with and see what we can do to fix the recipe, to get it to stay on the vanilla wafer.  Overall, it is tasty, just gets messy when it starts to thaw.

Posted in Diet, Hungry Girl

Hungry Girl Weekend #1

Last weekend was our very first Hungry Girl Weekend.  We used my new Hungry Recipe Cards and we picked out a few recipes to try.  (These recipes are also found in the Hungry Girl books).  We decided to try Lord of the Onion Rings, Ooey-gooey Chili Cheese Nachos, Bake-tastic Butternut Squash Fries, and Gimme Gimme Smores Sandwich.

Lord of The Onion Rings:  (Recipe found in the original Hungry Girl book, pg. 104)  This recipe requires crushing up original FiberOne Cereal.  Since many Hungry Girl recipes require this, it would be best to crush up all of the FiberOne cereal and store it in an airtight container.  It takes a while to crush up.  It’s probably a lot easier to use a food processor (which I don’t have).  I do have one of those little Black n’ Decker choppers, that really works.  Using the Pampered Chef chopper takes too long and doesn’t grind it into a fine powder, like to you need for this recipe.

Another suggestion for this recipe, wear safety goggles.  Chopping up the Onion will make you cry.

As for the actual taste, they weren’t bad.  They were a little bland but Ketchup solves that.  Next time I’m going to try adding some Italian spices in with the FiberOne for a little more flavor.  But for only 153 calories per serving (fast food onion rings are 450 calories), it’s worth the effort.  And I think you burn a lot of the calories just making it.

Ooey Gooey Chili Cheese Nachos: (Recipe found in the original Hungry Girl book, pg. 99)  This recipe is fairly easy if you can find the right kind of Turkey Chili in the store.  Diana and her husband Matt couldn’t so Matt just made the Turkey Chili for us.  But once you make the Chili and Cheese sauce on the stove, the rest is so simple.  You just put the alloted amount of baked tortilla chips in a bowl, add the cheese sauce, add the chili, and optional toppings (like fat free sour cream).  This would be a great meal option on Super Bowl Sunday for only 216 calories per serving.

Bake-tastic Butternut Squash Fries: (Recipe found in the original Hungry Girl book, pg. 100)  This one was a bit more challenging.  Once you get past laughing over the shape of the Butternut Squash –yes, we revert to being teenage girls–then you have to peel the whole thing.  Make sure you have a sharp knife when you start cutting into it.

The problem we had with this recipe is the time listed.  It says to bake for 40 minutes.  After 20 minutes, the smoke alarm went off because some of them started to burn.  Apparently we cut them too thin.  We cut them to look like normal fries–or carrot sticks.  If you cut them thin like we did, then cut the time in half.  And the recipe says it is 2 servings but it could definitely feed more.  The three of us couldn’t finish all of the fries.  But they were good–the ones we didn’t burn, that is.

I redid this recipe a few days later but broiled them in my toaster oven for 20 minutes, they were perfect.  They tasted like real fries but with a sweeter taste.

And for those of you who are worried about using Butternut Squash.  All I have to say is that Matt doesn’t like vegetables and we got him to eat the Butternut Squash fries and he liked them!  And the best part, they are only 125 calories per serving.

Gimme Gimme Smores Sandwich: (Recipe found in the Hungry Girl 200 under 200 book, pg. 260)  We didn’t actually get to make these on our Hungry Girl Weekend night so I tried them on my own.  Extremely simple to make.  Just remember to get the mini-semi sweet chocolate morsels.  I bought the regular ones and it was a little too much for me (I’m not a big fan of chocolate).  But I must say, I loved these desserts.  It tasted like an ice cream sandwich.  I even made a few with just the fat free cool whip and graham crackers.  Tasty, tasty.  And only 133 calories–even less if you leave out the chocolate and marshmallows