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Kwickie Kebobs and a “Hurts So Good” Workout

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A couple of days ago, I asked what you would like to see more of on the blog.  The top two things…

  1. Quick Meal for After Work
  2. Super Sweaty Workouts

So, here is a little bit of both!

First let’s start with dinner…

Dinner

This week has been extremely hot here in Indiana (104 degrees!) and I have really been craving summer foods.  One food that never fails to scream summer to me is the kebob.  My mom always makes kebobs during the hot months, and the foods being skewered vary every time!

I decided to keep things fairly simple last night and opted for shrimp and squash.  This little meal that is so good it seems like a treat, came together in just about 15 minutes…can’t beat that!

Kwickie Kebobs

Servings 2

Ingredients

  • 6-8 oz of shrimp (the size can vary, I went with medium)
  • 2 small squashes (summer, or zucchini)
  • 1/2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • wooden skewers

Directions

The night before you want to serve the kebobs, chop the veggies into semi-large pieces slightly bigger than the shrimp.  Place in a baggie with the balsamic vinegar, oil, garlic salt, and Italian seasoning.  Shake and allow to sit in the fridge over night.

If your shrimp is thawed you can do this with the shrimp too!

The following night, when you come home or decide that you are ready for the kebobs, place wooden skewers in a shallow pan of water so that they don’t burn.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Then, remove the squash from the bag and begin to skewer the shrimp and the squash, alternating in any pattern you like!

Place in the oven, bake on 400 degrees for 6-10 minutes, checking to see when the shrimp turn pink.

Once the shrimp are pink, remove from the oven and enjoy!

This meal would be great over brown rice or barley!

Now, onto the sweaty workout…

Super Sweaty Cardio Intervals

Thursday mornings, before heading into work, I start my day by teaching a 60 minute cardio interval class.  I have found a format for this class that the students really enjoy (they always tell me how class flies by!), really gets us working up a sweat, and allows us to have fun!

Yesterday’s workout was killer, and I mean that in the best way possible.  We were sweating after the first round, and really had to push through to finish.  It was that “hurts so good” kind of a workout.

Standing Crunch:  Stand with your arms lifted above the head holding a medium sized weight (8lbs), bring your arms down to one hip while lifting that knee up to your chest.  Place your foot back on the ground, lift your hands back above your head and repeat on the other side.

Monkey Jumps: Begin in a low squat position with toes slightly turned out and fingertips on the ground.  Push up through the heels jumping high and reaching arms overhead, land back in starting position.  Really keep that butt down!!

I hope you all enjoy your Friday, and have a great start to the weekend!

Of Possible Interest:

Homemade Protein Bars and Bowling

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When we arrived home from playing with puppies, I was in the mood to whip up a new and tasty snack: Homemade Protein Bars.  I found some recipes on Jamie Eason’s web site and had been wanting to try them for a while now, but since I had no kitchen on the boat I had to wait until I was home.  

The recipe called for oat flour, and since we didn’t have any I simply put oats in the food processor to create an oat flour and it worked great!

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I thought that these would be perfect for Brian to have as a snack between classes.  Also, when planning snacks, sometimes it is a little bit hard to incorporate protein simply because I don’t always want to include something like tuna or cheese, and these are a great alternative!

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Cinnamon Swirl Protein Bars (Based on the recipe by Jamie Eason)

Yield:  8 servings (cut into 16 squares, 2 bars equals one serving)

Cook Time:  24-28 minutes

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Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup NuNaturals Stevia BakingBlend
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 cups oat flour
  • 2 scoops Sunwarrior vanilla protein powder
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup Nunaturals Stevia BakingBlend
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 cup Vanilla Almond Breeze (I usually would use unsweetened but Mom only had the sweetened)
  • 1/4 cup Fage 0% plain Greek yogurt
Directions
Combine 1/4 cup Stevia and 2 tsp cinnamon in a small dish and set aside.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray an 8×8 glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.  
 
In a large bowl combine the oat flour, protein powder, baking powder, salt, stevia, egg whites, almond breeze, and Greek yogurt.  Mix until thoroughly combined, but don’t overmix.  
 
Pour half of the mixture into the bottom of the 8×8 baking dish.  Sprinkle half of the cinnamon and stevia mixture on top of the batter in the baking dish.  Pour the rest of the batter into the baking dish and top with the rest of the cinnamon and stevia.  
 
Bake for 24-28 minutes.  Allow to cool for 10 minutes.  Cut into 16 squares, 2 squares is one serving.  Bars will be slightly dense. 
 
Nutrition (for 2 bars)
Calories:  93.31g  Fat:  1.52g  Carbs:  13.46g  Protein:  7.62g

Enjoy!!!

 

After the baking was done, Mom had dinner ready for us!! She made a delicious meal of marinated shrimp, quinoa with cayenne, black beans, and corn, and steamed asparagus.  A completely nutritious and delicious meal!

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After dinner, Mom, Dad, Brian and I headed to the bowling alley.  We are slightly competitive as a family, and Mom decided to bring her own lucky bowling ball.  Mom and Dad used to be on a bowling league and are secretly pretty good at it…Brian and I are, however, not that good at bowling.

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I was able to get a couple of strikes…as well as a couple of gutter balls!

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Brian got some strikes as well!!

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Brian and Dad were the high scorers for the first game.

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Mom and I were the high scorers in the second game.  I still didn’t break 100 😉  It was a great way to spend the evening! 

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This morning, I woke up super early again simply because of the cruise ship schedule that I am used to, but I headed right down stairs to make myself some more oatmeal with Sunwarrior, peanut butter and strawberries.

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Now, Brian, Mom, and I are getting ready to head to Zumba…this is Brian’s first time and it should be interesting! 

Low and Slow

Today, the kitchen appliances were workin’…..

Right:  Rice Cooker, Left:  Crock Pot

Right: Rice Cooker, Left: Crock Pot

When I was home recently, my mom made a delicious crock pot meal that really made me think of fall.  At the time it was literally 100 degrees out, but today it was chilly, slightly rainy, cloudy, and so appropriate for a warm meal to be cooking in the crock pot all day filling the house with spicy aromas.

I had actually never used a crock pot on my own until today, and let me tell you…it is easy peasy!  I seriously poured everything into the  pot in the morning and let it cook low and slow.

Vegetable Curry Crock Pot Dinner 

Ingredients:

  • 3 carrots, sliced into rounds
  • 1/2 onion, chopped,
  • 3 minced garlic cloves
  • 2 Tbsp yellow curry powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground red pepper or cayenne
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 large potato, chopped into small pieces
  • 8 oz frozen green beans
  • 1 can of chickpeas
  • 1 large tomato diced
  • 2 cups of stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 can light coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup-1 cup shrimp (uncooked)
Preparation:
In a pan, saute the carrots, onion, and garlic until tender.  Add the curry, red pepper, salt and pepper.  Cook until spices become fragrant, about 2 more minutes.  Remove vegetables from the pan and transfer to the crock pot. Add the potatoes, green beans, chickpeas,  tomato, and stock.  Set the slow cooker on low and cook for 5 and a 1/2 hours.  Add the coconut milk and shrimp and continue to cook until ready to serve.
This meal is so simple, tasty, and makes a ton for leftovers!
Work Fashion
I love wearing my boots at work because they are seriously the most comfortable shoes I have.
Now, I am off to bed ready for a productive and relaxing day tomorrow 🙂

Bachelorette and an Easy Night In

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Today, we fit helmets at a 4-H fair, which is an organization for youth focusing on Heart, Hands, Head, and Health.  The kids taught me that today.  Many of the children show animals such as rabbits, chickens, roosters, cows, and pigs.  I will say that this was probably the most interesting location we were at.  The animals were making their noises in the background, kids were playing sack races in a pen nearby, and here we were fitting bicycle helmets.  It is crazy to think that this area was just a two hour drive away, yet it seemed like a different world.  All of the bicycle-helmet fitters were chatting about how we wonder if we would have turned out differently if we had been raised in an environment like this.  Who knows!? Interesting to say the least 🙂

We were originally put into a pen like this to fit helmets...but there was a little too much po0 for our liking

When I arrived home (well the home I am dog-sitting at) Brian and I were both hungry for dinner. We decided on Zucchini Shrimp Barley Risotto.  I had been eyeing this recipe for a while, and tonight was the night to try it out…it was amazing!

Zucchini, Shrimp, and Barley Risotto  (adapted from pbfingers.com)

Ingredients:

  • 1 and 3/4  cups fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup chopped zucchini
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup lightly pearled barley
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/4 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon margarine
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Preparation:
Begin by bringing the broth to boil.  Leave on the stove to simmer and keep warm.  Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium high heat.  Heat the zucchini and onion in the oil for about 5 minutes until soft, stirring frequently.  Add the barley and cook for 1 minute stirring frequently. Stir in 1/2 cup of the broth, cook 5 minutes until liquid is nearly soaked up.  Stir in 1/4 cup broth and salt.  Add remaining broth, 1/4 cup at a time, stirring between each round until completely absorbed before adding the next batch.  Add the shrimp and cook for about 4 minutes.  Stir in cheese, margarine, and pepper.
We rounded out this meal with a nice and crisp side salad…it was a perfect summer meal
Bella
After dinner, Brian and I took Bella on her nightly walk.  We are absolutely in love with all of the houses in the area and this cute neighborhood.  All of the houses are so old and have so much character, it is definitely not the ‘burbs.  This location is also close to a lot of great restaurants, little shops, and the monon which is great for walking, running, and biking on.
Bella is obsessed with this ball.  Literally, it is the only thing she plays with.  She will just bring it out, and if we don’t notice right away she will start to wimper a little.  All we have to do is throw the ball, not even far, she will chase it and bring it back and she is perfectly content!  What a cutie 🙂
Now, we are watching the bachelorette and just chilling out for the night!