Saturday, April 4, 2009

Today is a day off + Baked Stuffed Zucchini recipe

I hosted/ran a karate tournament today at my school. We had a bigger turnout than the last one! I am always really stressed out the day before a tournament and in the morning before it starts. The whole thing seems like chaos to me from start to finish. But somehow we pulled it off (as always) and the parents and students were all happy and complimentary. So I guess we did our jobs.

We always get Noah's bagels for everyone that helps set up on tournament day. I don't get lunch until well after 2:00 when the whole thing is over and cleaned up and everyone is gone. I decided to take a day off from counting points, journalling, or even trying to be good. It's a decision that might mean I am unhappy on the scale come Wednesday, but I have been really, really good for the past few months, so I figure one day off in the long run isn't that horrible. (Besides, I'll do a long run tomorrow, and that will help burn off some of the junk).

Public Service Announcement: the chocolate chip coffee cake at Noah's is a naughty little slice of heaven. I'm afraid to even look up the nutritionals on it, so I won't. I only had half and shared the other half with my 7-year-old. Oh, and the cinnamon sugar bagel "poppers" - also good.

Lunch was Baja Fresh. I was bad there, too, with 3 tacos and some shared queso dip. Oops. At least dinner will be healthy - baked falafel with hummus and lots of veggies and maybe a whole-wheat pita.

I made these stuffed zucchini on Thursday for lunch. I had zucchini that needed to be used, and one of those annoying less-than-one-serving-leftover-in-the-box situations with some whole wheat couscous. These were super filling and the stuffing was very flavorful. You could split this into 2 or 4 servings if you are having it as a side dish instead of a meal, although if you eat the full recipe, you get a healthy oil serving, 2 veggie servings, and 12g of protein! I let mine cool for about 5 minutes and then I was able to just pick them up and eat them with my hands. If you have company, though, you might want to use a fork and a knife. :)

--Baked Stuffed Zucchini--

-2 small zucchini
-1 tsp. olive oil (I used Basil-infused)
-1 tsp. minced garlic
-2 Tbsp. minced onion
-1 ounce shredded parmesan cheese, divided
-1 tsp. Mrs. Dash seasoning
-1 rounded Tbsp. whole-wheat couscous
-1/4 fat-free cup chicken broth or water

Preheat oven to 375F. Place couscous in a container with a lid. Add one generous Tbsp. of boiling water or chicken broth, stir briefly, and cover. Set aside and allow to sit for at least 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, cut the zucchini in half vertically. Use a spoon with a sharp poing to scrape out the seeds and pulp, leaving a 1/8 ' - 1/4" shell around the sides. Chop or break up the seeds/pulp. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat until shimmery. Add zucchini pulp, onions, and garlic. Sautee for 3-4 minutes or until garlic starts to turn golden. Remove from heat. Stir in the Mrs. Dash and all but a few pinches of the cheese (no need to be exact).

Spoon the filling into the prepared zucchini halves, rounding tops if neccessary. Place in a glass baking dish and gently pour chicken broth around the halves. Bake for 10 minutes. Sprinkle reserved parmesan over the 4 halves and bake an additional 3-5 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly and starting to brown around the edges.

Nutritionals: 220 calories, 12g fat, 4g fiber, 260mg sodium, 12g protein

WW Points: 5

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