Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Easy Hummus

I love hummus and recently made this version.  It turned out great. 
I found it on Inspiredtaste.net website.
Check out the website for other hummus ideas  ~Shelly

Makes 6 servings or about 1 1/2 cups

You Will Need

1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas or 1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (1 large lemon)
1/4 cup well-stirred tahini, 
1 small garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt to taste
2 to 3 tablespoons water
Dash ground paprika or sumac, for serving


    In the bowl of a food processor, combine the tahini and lemon juice and process for 1 minute, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl then process for 30 seconds more. This extra time helps “whip” or “cream” the tahini, making the hummus smooth and creamy.How to Make Hummus-Recipe-Step-1
    Add the olive oil, minced garlic, cumin, and a 1/2 teaspoon of salt to the whipped tahini and lemon juice. Process for 30 seconds, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl then process another 30 seconds or until well blended. Open, drain, and rinse the chickpeas. Add half of the chickpeas to the food processor and process for 1 minute. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl, then add remaining chickpeas and process until thick and quite smooth; 1 to 2 minutes.How-to-Make-Hummus-Recipe-Step-2
    Most likely the hummus will be too thick or still have tiny bits of chickpea. To fix this, with the food processor turned on, slowly add 2 to 3 tablespoons of water until you reach the perfect consistency.How-to-Make-Hummus-Recipe-Step-3
    Taste for salt and adjust as needed. Serve hummus with a drizzle of olive oil and dash of paprika. Store homemade hummus in an airtight container and refrigerate up to one week.      


Monday, July 29, 2019

Shelly's Weight Loss Journey - The Beginning - Focused, Aware, and Disciplined

What do we know?

6 SOL Sisters this weekend - July 27, 2019

I know that we should love ourselves, and I do.  I appreciate that I am a healthy and vibrant person.  I tell the reflection in the mirror that “you are beautiful”.  (Usually after hair is styled and makeup is applied.)

But, truth be told, I turned 60 last year and I know that I need to take off excess weight that slows me down and threatens to affect my health.  My pictures are not as flattering and climbing the stairs from my brother’s dock this weekend left me completely out of breath.

If we continue to do the same things we’ve always done, we will continue to get the same results.  And, I know, nothing will change until I am ready to make a change.  I am ready!

I know that what we think about and focus on expands.  Anytime we focus on a project, we think about it.  We make plans, we research and gather what we need, we recruit help if needed, etc.  It’s no different here.

For me, counting calories has always worked.  Write down or journal what is eaten and count the calories.  I was a Weight Watcher for many years.  It worked for me.  At the time I was focused, aware of what I was eating and disciplined.  Counting points is similar to counting calories.  Both ways allow for added caloric intake from time to time.  Weight Watchers is great but if money or time is an issue, check out other online options.  My phone has several apps that I haven’t even looked at yet.  One is a Health App, I want to figure out how to count my steps in a day.  Not too hard, right?

MyFitnessPal App is a Calorie Counter and tracker.  It’s a free App.  It is easy to use It has thousands of pre-loaded food items.  It remembers your previous choices.   It can calculate your personal recipes.  It also calculates protein, carbs, sodium, etc.  I will use this App.

Go ahead and take some body measurements.  Record the number on your scale.  It is day 1.  Know that it will only get better from here.  Record your weight once a week at the same time of day.

Enlist the company of a friend.  Keep each other accountable without being judgmental. 
Remember that life is a journey.  When you are on a road and feeling lost, you have anxiety, frustration, even anger.  But as soon as you know that you are going in the right direction, you immediately feel a calmness.  Our commitment to following our food choice plan is exactly the same way.  We immediately feel good, excited, encouraged and ready for this adventure.  Let’s do this.

To begin, decide it is time to change current routines and habits.  We’re making new routines and habits now.  Read, study, research, read labels, and educate yourself.  Take notice of the amount of servings per a particular container or package.  Shop the perimeter of the grocery store. Avoid processed foods.  No Sugar or white flour.  Pick fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh lean meats, chicken, and fish.  Limit cheese.  Healthy fats are necessary.  Limit to 3 servings a day, approximately 3 oz. per serving.   Good fats are Avocado, Butter, Olive Oil, Coconut oil, grapeseed oil.

Google “healthy recipes” with a particular vegetable.  Try something new.  Spaghetti Squash with pasta sauce, Butternut Squash soup, a side of mashed Cauliflower, and Roasted Veggies. Don’t overcook veggies. Steam them, bake, roast, or grill them.

This is my plan of action.  You may decide on a different plan.  But most important, make the plan and then execute the plan.   I will stay between 1200 and 1500 calories per day.  For now, no junk food.  For now, VERY limited alcohol.  What are your “Red Light” foods that for now we are going to say, “Very Limited”?

Waterhalf my body weight in ounces per day. Start first thing in the morning with 20 oz.  I like cold from the fridge, but not ice water.  Or I just add 1-2 cubes of ice to slightly cool tap water.  Set a timer on your phone for every three hours to remind yourself to drink another 20 oz. bottle.  Flavor the water if you like.  Add the juice of a lemon, lime, or an orange.  You can purchase flavored water, but stay away from all artificial sweeteners, as much as possible.  Write your water amounts on your food journal. 

Make it simple to start.  Each of my meals will include a protein, a fat, and a vegetable, at least at lunch and dinner.   I will avoid starchy foods and starchy vegetables to begin with.  A Low Carb plan is also not hard for me to follow. 

For Breakfast – one of these.
Plain Yogurt and fruit  (I like full fat yogurt)
2 eggs scrabbled with ¼ cup Cottage cheese

Lunch – one of these.– Prepare your lunch at home to take to work
2 oz. Deli meat and 2 oz. cheese on reduced calorie bread with fruit and or veggies
All Nut butters are good with an apple
Cottage Cheese and sliced tomato
Leftovers from last night, meat with veggies
Prepackaged salad from the produce dept.  You may want to add 2 oz. of extra deli meat.
“P-3”, in the deli case, is a package of 2 oz. meat, 2 oz. Cheese and nuts.  Add a piece of fruit.

Dinner – one of these.
4 oz. beef, chicken, or fish with salad or veggie. 
Spaghetti Squash and Sauce with 2 of Marina’s meatballs.  (Marina’s products are pre-made and sold at HH Republic Rd and Eastgate)

If you’re out, take a picture of your meal so you can remember to record it later.

Snacks –
Almonds, Walnuts, Cashews
V-8 juice, If sodium isn’t an issue
Applesauce (no sugar added)

Late night or other snacks -
I like to have a prepackaged protein snack (The ones I like are sold at The Healthy Weight Supermarket or Professional Weight Management) I like a protein juice drink in place of a glass of wine.  (I know, it’s not the same.  But it is a replacement.)  I like the protein bars, protein hot chocolate, etc.  Lots of things to choose from.   This is also good if you feel the need for something sweet after a meal.

Hot tea. I like one cup of coffee in the morning, but in the evening, I enjoy a cup of tea.  It feels like a treat.

Add Activity

Start slow.  We all hate exercise.  But activity should be fun.  I have danced for 10 years, but because it is established in my routine, I need to add something more.  I’m telling myself, Just Walk.  A 30 minute walk once or twice a day is perfect.  Find something you really enjoy!  I want to get my bike out for a ride.  I love to swim.  I even enjoy projects around the house that include lifting and bending, also gardening.  I LOVE yoga.  I will add yoga into my routine.  ( Don’t just say it, do it! Schedule it in your calendar.)   
Make time to be outdoors a little bit every day!

Write your activity on your food journal. 

My good friend Vivian said all the time, “Good, better, best, never it rest, till the good becomes better, and better becomes the best.”  I believe this quote originates from Muhammad Ali, but for me, it is a Vivian quote.

What has worked for you?  What are your go-to recipes?
I would Love your feedback.  Feel free to email me at Shelly@harterhouse.com.  And let me know if I can share your suggestions.

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Chef John's Stuffed Peppers

When was the last time you had a great stuffed bell pepper?

"This recipe's roots can be traced back to the Great Depression, when farmers first began selling the unripe peppers out of necessity. Of course, we did what Americans always do when faced with a new variety of food, we stuffed meat in it."


  • 1 cup uncooked long grain white rice
  • 2 cups water
  • Sauce:
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups marinara sauce or pasta sauce
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes

  • 1 pound lean ground beef
  • 1/4 pound hot Italian pork sausage, casing removed
  • 1 (10 ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch ground cayenne pepper
  • 4 large green bell peppers, halved lengthwise and seeded
  • 1 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for topping


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. Bring rice and water to a boil in a saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the rice is tender, and the liquid has been absorbed, 20 to 25 minutes. Set the cooked rice aside.
  3. Cook onion and olive oil over medium heat until onion begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Transfer half of cooked onion to a large bowl and set aside.
  4. Stir marinara sauce, beef broth, balsamic vinegar, and red pepper flakes into the skillet; cook and stir for 1 minute.
  5. Pour sauce mixture into a 9x13-inch baking dish and set aside.
  6. Combine ground beef, Italian sausage, diced tomatoes, Italian parsley, garlic, salt, black pepper, and cayenne pepper into bowl with reserved onions; mix well. Stir in cooked rice and Parmigiano Reggiano. Stuff green bell peppers with beef and sausage mixture.
  7. Place stuffed green bell pepper halves in the baking dish over tomato sauce; sprinkle with remaining Parmigiano-Reggiano, cover baking dish with aluminum foil, and bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes.
  8. Remove aluminum foil and bake until the meat is no longer pink, the green peppers are tender and the cheese is browned on top, an addition 20 to 25 minutes.
Printed From Allrecipes.com

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Thai Spaghetti Pasta Salad

I LOVE Thai food.
This Thai Spaghetti Pasta Salad recipe starts with spaghetti noodles and is full of fresh veggies, then tossed with a creamy, peanut based Thai dressing.


8 ounces of spaghetti cooked to al dente
1 cup shredded red cabbage
1 cup shredded carrots
1/3 cup very thinly sliced red peppers
1/3 cup thinly sliced green onions
1/2 cup roasted peanuts plus more for garnish
1 handful cilantro leaves chopped, plus more for garnish


1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 Tbsp sesame oil
1/2 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp smooth peanut butter
1 clove garlic minced
salt to taste


  • Place cooked spaghetti, green onions, peanuts, shredded carrots, cabbage and bell peppers into a large mixing bowl.
  • Mix dressing ingredients together until smooth.
  • Toss salad ingredients together with dressing. Refrigerate Garnish with peanuts and cilantro

Monday, July 8, 2019

Barbecue for Vegetarians?

Barbecue is synonymous with meat.  Think Barbecue and you think pork butt or shoulder, beef brisket, ribs, and even chicken.  It’s a universal favorite even in its different incarnations across the country.  So what’s a vegetarian to do if he or she wants to partake in that taste sensation?  Is it even possible?  Absolutely!

     With a little creativity and ingenuity, even the most die-hard vegetarians can find a way to indulge in a fantastic barbecue, whether by duplicating the taste or just enjoying the barbecue experience.  Here are a few ideas for vegetarian foods suited for grilling;

·         Corn on the cob is awesome prepared on the grill.  It can even be brushed with barbecue sauce for that classic flavor in a unique preparation.  Eggplant is also perfect for grilling.  Brushed with olive oil, it will cook up with fantastic-looking grill marks.  It’s suited to a wide variety of grilling methods and flavors, too

·         If you’d like something a little more “meaty,” then Portobello mushrooms are the answer.  They make a great vegetarian barbecue option.  They can be grilled up like a burger, slathered in a sweet barbecue sauce or marinated like a steak.  The meaty flavor of a Portobello is perfect for duplicating barbecued meat methods.

·         Tofu is another option perfect for the vegetarian barbecue.  Because of its texture and ability to take on the flavors of sauces or marinades, it’s definitely suited to a slathering of barbecue sauce.

No matter the season, any time is the right time for a little barbecue bliss!  Let Harter HouseSupermarkets provide you with the freshest ingredients available for your next barbecue.

Grilled Vegetable Salad
Arrange grilled summer vegetables, such as zucchini, peppers, onions and eggplant, on a large platter and serve them at your next backyard get-together.


5 tablespoons butter melted
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh garlic
1/4 cup red wine or sherry vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground or coarse ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons finely chopped pitted kalamata olives


2 medium zucchini, halved lenghwise
1 large red bell pepper, quartered
1 large yellow bell pepper, quartered
1 large red onion, cut into 6 slices
1 small eggplant, cut into 6 (1/2-inch thick) slices


Combine butter with olive oil, rosemary and garlic in medium bowl; reserve 1/4 cup. Add vinegar, mustard, pepper, salt and olives to remaining butter mixture; mix well. Set aside.

Heat gas grill on medium or charcoal grill until coals are ash white. Place vegetables onto grill, cut-side down.

Grill, turning and brushing occasionally with reserved butter mixture, until vegetables are tender and browned (13 to 15 minutes).

To serve, arrange vegetables on serving platter; drizzle with vinaigrette.



"Peachy" Pork Chops & Asian Slaw Recipe

Here is a great idea for fixing Center Cut Pork Chops.
4 Center-Cut Pork Chops - from Harter House Supermarket
1 Cup peach preserves
Spice Rub (see below)

Spice Rub 1/2 C brown sugar
3 tsp sea salt
3 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
3 tsp sweet paprika
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder

1.) Mix rub ingredients together and massage into all sides of the chops. Let sit for about 30 minutes. You don’t want to grill super cold meat. That’s a no-no.

2.) Put preserves into a small saucepan over low heat. Stir with a non-stick spatula. Once the preserves are sauce-like, turn the heat on as low as possible. Ignore the sweet stuff for the moment.

3.) Preheat your outdoor grill (or indoor if you can't have an outdoor grill for whatever reason) on LOW.

4.) If you grill these chops on anything but low, you will end up with BLACK chops. Black chops = not so good chops!

5.) Grill the chops until done - remember a teeny bit of pink won't kill you. Too many people overcook pork and end up eating what looks, tastes, and feels like shoe leather

6.) During the last 5-7 minutes of grilling, baste all sides of the chops with the peach glaze. Don't walk away. Don't close the lid. The sugars will caramelize.

7.) Serve the remaining peach glaze.

I served the chops with homemade Asian slaw and steamed corn on the cob.   

Asian Slaw Recipe
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons minced ginger
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons brown sugar
5 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons mirin, or white wine
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 cup thinly sliced napa cabbage
1/2 cup thinly sliced green cabbage
1 cup julienned carrots
1/2 cup thinly sliced red onion
1/2 cup thinly sliced red bell pepper
1/2 cup thinly sliced bok choy
1/2 cup bean sprouts
1/2 cup julienned snap peas
1/2 cup julienned green onions
15 wonton skins, fried
Peanuts, for garnish

Directions In a small saucepan add 2 tablespoons olive oil, ginger and garlic, lightly saute until lightly brown. Add brown sugar, soy sauce, and mirin. Saute for 5 minutes and remove from heat. When cool whisk in olive oil, sesame oil and rice wine vinegar.

Mix all vegetables in a bowl and toss with dressing.
Garnish with crushed wontons and peanuts.

You will find everything you need at Harter House and Harter House World Flavors!


Monday, July 1, 2019

Chipotle-Marinated Pork Tenderloin with Black Bean Salsa

The benefits of pork tenderloin go on and on: It's low in fat and calories, easy to prepare, quick to cook, affordable, and absorbs seasoning and other flavors easily.

Here, pork tenderloin is marinated in a Southwestern chipotle blend, seared in a grill pan, and served with a fiber-rich bean and tomato salsa.


• 1 can(s) chipotle chile, in adobo sauce, (for pork)
• 3 clove(s) garlic
• 1/2 cup(s) coarsely chopped white onion, (for pork)
• 2 tablespoon(s) fresh lime juice, (for pork)
• 1 teaspoon(s) sherry vinegar
• 1 teaspoon(s) dried Mexican oregano OR Italian Seasoning
• 1 pound(s) pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat
• 1 can(s) (19 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
• 1 cup(s) grape tomatoes, quartered
• 1/4 cup(s) finely chopped white onion, (for salsa)
• 1/4 cup(s) finely chopped fresh cilantro
• 3 tablespoon(s) fresh lime juice, (for salsa)
• 2 teaspoon(s) minced canned chipotle chile, in adobo sauce, (for salsa)
• 1/2 teaspoon(s) ground cumin

1. Make the pork marinade: Process chile, garlic, onion, lime juice, vinegar, and oregano in a blender until smooth. Rub marinade all over the pork. Transfer pork to a dish, and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat a grill pan over high heat. Grill pork until seared on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer pan to the oven; cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of meat registers 145 degrees, 20 to 25 minutes. Let pork stand at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.

3. Meanwhile, Make the Salsa: Stir together the black beans, tomatoes, onion, cilantro, lime juice, chile, and cumin in a small bowl. Serve with the pork.

Pork tenderloin is one of the leanest cuts of meat.

You will find everything you need at Harter House and Harter House World Flavors.