Last week I got my newest issue of Cooking Light in, and I just LOVE this magazine. I would normally have never picked it out as a magazine, but we had miles on United that we were able to convert to magazine subscriptions and the list was pretty sparse. I picked out Cooking Light and figured I'd barely read it. It is now my favorite magazine! I always find at least two recipes that I'm dying to make, and I haven't had anything I've tried fail. One of my biggest pet peeves about recipes is when I can tell they were not tested extensively, because either the ingredients are off or the directions are off. Cooking Light clearly tests their recipes over and over again, which I appreciate since it doesn't waste money or my time!
The thing I love most about it (and would have subscribed sooner if I'd known), but they use "real" ingredients in their recipes. Butter, cream, bacon, cheese etc. Part of my being so successful this go around with my weight loss was coming to terms with the fact that cutting food I love out of my life simply doesn't work for me. I feel resentful and like I'm not normal, binge eating happens and then I'm back to square one. Now I eat whatever I damn well please (within reason) and have managed to stay more or less on track for almost a year! Having recipes that use just enough of the "naughty" stuff makes them taste good while still incorporating healthful components.
Anyways, I swear I'm not a paid schill for Cooking Light, I'm mainly bringing this all up because my newest issue had so many great recipes that I've already tried three that I want to share with you:
One Pan Broccoli-Bacon Mac and Cheese: I wanted to make this immediately because the picture looked so amazing! And you know, bacon. I made this on Monday and was basically pretty happy with it, although I was weirded out the first night we had it because I could taste the pumpkin in the sauce. I am not a huge fan of pumpkin (and I loathe butternut squash), so this kind of bummed me out. I was happier when eating the leftovers though because the pumpkin flavor had mellowed and I didn't really taste it at all. I liked this fairly well and would probably make it again.
Lighter Sloppy Joes: First of all, I hate Sloppy Joes. I don't know what it is, I think mostly it's the sickly sweetness, but I just cannot stand them normally. Manwich is like Satan in a can, don't even go there with asking me about it. I don't know what appealed to me about this recipe other than there is only a tablespoon of brown sugar in it and all of the other seasonings are savory. I get cravings for beef and I haven't had it in awhile, so likely that was more of the culprit. Anyway I am happy to say that I LOVED this! Super easy to put together (I used the pulse function on my food processor to grind the chickpeas and onion, and also added raw mushrooms) and fast to make. I used normal pickles on the sandwiches because bread and butter pickles are also Satan in a jar.
Cereal and Milk Bars: I should not be posting the link to these evil bastards, but hopefully you guys won't be as naughty as me with them. I can't even describe these cereal bars other than a Rice Krispie treat meeting a bowl of cereal with strawberries. They are like amazing crack is what they are. I highly recommend these, they were easy and fun to make, just make sure you take the bulk of them into your coworkers or something so you don't eat 2 in a sitting like me.
And lastly on the realm of discovering new things, I discovered a new album that I'm in love with and wanted to share with you guys. It really isn't a new album, just a new to me album. You guys know I'm really into older music, and one of my special obsessions is The Beach Boys. Watching that "Love & Mercy" movie has inspired me lately to dive deeper into the BB's music and some of the deeper tracks/albums, I also read a biography on Brian Wilson and am currently reading one on Dennis Wilson. All of this stuff is so fascinating and tragic, but I'm definitely happy to have expanded my knowledge of their history and music. I picked up Dennis Wilson's solo album "Pacific Ocean Blue" a couple of weeks ago and oh my God....if you haven't ever heard of this album or checked it out, you must!
The vibe is really sexy and mellow (like Dennis himself), and the music is so unique and sensitive. He has a sexy (cannot enough emphasis on that, because seriously) raspy voice that is a few shades under the Joe Cocker rasp. It's one of those albums that makes you wonder what if? (If you are not familiar, after a long battle with drugs and alcohol, Dennis tragically drowned at the age of 39 when he went diving in Marina Del Ray after drinking.) As I've been listening to this album I just think, what if his brothers had taken him more seriously and allowed him to be involved in the creative process more? What if he'd been able to get his life together and put out more albums? It's just truly sad, but I'm glad that at least this album is here for everyone to enjoy. I thought I'd leave one of the tracks for you guys to listen to and enjoy!