For those of you who are over, let’s say 35, do you remember way back in the 80′s when one of the most popular appetizers in just about every hip eatery was Deep-Fried Mushrooms and Zucchini?
Those were the days, weren’t they?
Wonderfully magical, I tell you!
Every weekend at happy hour, we’d waltz into Lunt Avenue Marble Club and eat a huge platter of those crunchy delights. Dipping them into a creamy white dipping sauce … and not gain a pound!
And at that heavenly happy hour, you could order 2 for 1 cocktails for three bucks and the waitress would deliver both drinks to your table at the same time. Sometimes you’d order your second round before you finished your first, and you’d have four drinks sitting in front of you. At the same time!
Honestly kids, that is not a dream! It used to happen.
The part about not gaining a pound is true too. It may have had a little tiny bit to do with my 20 something metabolism … I miss those days.
I miss Deep-Fried Mushrooms and Zucchini.
I really miss my metabolism!
I miss it all so much that I tried to bring it back for a remix.
These days, just looking at a platter of Deep-Fried Mushrooms and Zucchini would cause me to instantly gain 10, maybe 20 pounds. So, I gave the zucchini a “makeover” – just to see if I could recapture at least a little slice of the glory days.
As far as makeovers go – this was a major fail! As far as your basic low-cal, low-fat, low-cholesterol makeover – it was a fine.
These zucchini rounds are NOTHING like the glory days zucchini, but they are an OK side dish. With that ringing endorsement, I’m sure you’re going to want to run into the kitchen and whip up a batch or two.
I miss the Magical Days!
I used diet cheese puffs for the yellow zucchini and diet honey mustard pretzels for the green zucchini. The cheese puff zucchini was disgusting! I’m only mentioning it because it is shown in the photos. Otherwise I would prefer to forget it completely!
The pretzel variety was tasty … as tasty as diet baked zucchini can be when you are really wishing you were at Lunt Avenue with four cocktails in front of you.
For those of you who still own a 20 something metabolism or are willing to throw caution to the wind… the original recipe for LAMC Deep-Fried Mushrooms and Zucchini is at the end of the post. If you make it, do not let me know. It will only serve to make me feel sad.
April 23, 2013 3 Comments
For our sit-down birthday dinner we had stuffed pork loin, green onion and Parmesan mashed potatoes, and a cold succotash side dish. The potatoes and the succotash have been posted here before, there are links to those recipes near the bottom of this post.
Peggy is not a big fan of beef. Occasionally, she’ll indulge in a hamburger, but put of plate with beef tenderloin in front of her and she turns her nose up at it. (I know, sometimes I think there is something wrong with that girl!)
It was a blessing when you’re feeding 25 people, though! Beef tenderloin would have been on the expensive side, to say the least. But a pork loin – now that is doable!
I was initially planning to use pork tenderloin, but when I compared the price of the loin to the tenderloin – well that made the decision for me. I purchased two huge pork loins at Costco, they were about $18.00 each.
This recipe would work just as well using beef tenderloin, so choose whichever you prefer. If you can’t find Manchego cheese, use Monterey Jack or Pepper Jack instead.
March 2, 2013 1 Comment
The table before dinner…
… and during dinner.
We started with Rosé champagne and a toast to the birthday girl.
Peggy’s brother, Mark, made the first toast – and her brother, Vince, said grace.
As we enjoyed our first course salad – many of the guests toasted sweet Peggy. When Peggy got up to speak… well, there wasn’t a dry eye at the table.
Peggy and her gorgeous kids; clockwise – Peggy, Stevo, Samme, and Natalie.
Quinoa Salad with Baby Greens, Summer Fruit, and Herbs
March 1, 2013 5 Comments
Today is supposed to be the last day of the 3-week “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse. But in reality, it ended for me on Friday night. I always knew that I was not going to participate in the last day because I threw a 50th Birthday Party for my BFF, Peggy, last night.
So although I thought that my last meal on the cleanse would be lunch on Saturday, I threw in the towel after lunch on Friday. I’d been cooking all day long for the party and just didn’t have it in me to make something from the cleanse for dinner that night. Instead, Dave stopped at Pei Wei and brought home Chinese food. It tasted So Good!
For anyone doing the cleanse, here are the recipes for today – Day 7 of Week 3 – the LAST day!
So what are my thoughts on the cleanse? It was OK. I would not do it again, that is for sure, but it wasn’t the worst thing either. The food was good tasting, for the most part. It was a lot of cooking, prep, and shopping.
I lost a grand total of 4 pounds – only 4 pounds after eating basically vegan the first week and only adding in fish the second, and eggs the third. No alcohol, no diary, no bread, no dessert, no fun – and only 4 lousy pounds! Yes, I know this wasn’t a weight loss cleanse, but still, it was disappointing!
Did I feel healthier, more energetic, less toxic. No, I didn’t feel anything but bored with the food and sick of it by the end of each week.
Now that it is over, I can concentrate on sharing with you all the party prep, photos, and recipes. That will start tomorrow. I’m a bit too hungover to share much more today!
February 24, 2013 2 Comments
The dinner meal on this forth day of the third week of the “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse was my least favorite meal of the entire cleanse. Additionally this recipe didn’t make sense. It originally had you start with 1/2 cup cooked rice and 3 cups of water. What? The end result of that would be 1/2 cup of overcooked soggy rice floating around in 3 cups of water! Even starting with uncooked rice, as I did, resulted in a flavorless rice bowl. The recipe also never told you to heat the tofu before adding to the bowl. Oh, it would be so bad if you didn’t.
If you really want to try the recipe, use either the cleaning broth from the first two weeks or vegetable broth… maybe that would help.
On the plus side – this is the closest thing to a soup this week – and yesterday (when I actually had this for dinner) was the perfect day for it because it was a dark, cold, rainy… and snowy day here in Arizona! Yes, snow in the Valley of the Sun.
The rice bowl is dinner today and is supposed to be lunch again on the final day of the cleanse… not sure I’ll give it a second chance.
February 21, 2013 3 Comments
The breakfast muffin recipe of the “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse originally made four muffins, that seemed silly, so I adjusted the recipe to make six.
Don’t be afraid when the recipe directs you to fill the muffins to the top, it won’t overflow the papers or spill all over your oven, I promise.
The muffins are surprisingly good and nicely filling.
February 20, 2013 2 Comments
For Day Two of Week Three of the “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse they had you eating the same thing for lunch and for dinner, which I have to guess was a mistake. As a result, I’m improvising and switching out the lunch for the thing that I think sounds best out of all the lunch and dinner meals… TACOS!
Another heads up for today – you have to start preparing your breakfast the night before – happily, I caught that in time.
The original muesli recipe had you soak the oats and dried fruits in 2/3 cup water overnight in the refrigerator. That doesn’t sound very tasty to me, I soaked mine in 1/2 cup almond milk instead. Very tasty!
February 19, 2013 1 Comment
Just as with the first two weeks, it’s best to do a little prep before you begin the week of recipes. Once again it would be helpful to cook up some quinoa and some brown rice for the week. Additionally, baked tofu is used, so get it ready ahead of time and cooking will be easier in this last week of the “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse.
While I had the oven on, cooking the tofu, I also pre-baked the acorn squash that will be used for tonight’s dinner.
(to be used in two different recipes this week)
One 14-ounce package firm tofu, drained
2 tablespoons tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place the tofu on a double layer of paper towels, lay another paper towel on top and press down lightly to remove the initial water. Remove the damp towels and replace with two fresh towels, weight down with a plate and let sit for 20 minutes.
Slice block of tofu into sixteen 1/4-inch-thick slabs and transfer to a large bowl.
Whisk together the tamari and olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Drizzle dressing over tofu and marinate 20 minutes, tossing occasionally.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange tofu on a lightly oiled baking sheet and bake 10 minutes. Flip and bake 30 minutes more. Let cool.
Makes 16 slabs
(Refrigerate tofu in an airtight container up to 3 days.)
February 18, 2013 1 Comment
All I’m thinking about today, is getting it over with, food-wise, that is.
If I was to do this “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse all over again, and believe me, I have no intention of doing so, I’d skip Week Two and go straight to Week Three.
I’ve been making my shopping list for the next week, and the food sounds so much better; frittata, muesli, and muffins for breakfast and tacos, halibut, and poached eggs for lunch and dinner. So. Much. Better.
The only things I’d make again from this past week are the Kale Salad and the Pancakes. As for the rest of it – no thanks.
Thankfully, those two items are on the menu this final and Seventh Day of Week Two.
February 17, 2013 1 Comment
I am wearing my new attitude today and I am ready to finish this thing! All of the recipe for the “Detox Cuisine” Cleanse today are repeats.
Day Six of Week Two recipes are:
February 16, 2013 4 Comments