Pickles

Mother’s Day Dinner Recap

Dinner tonight was perfect and I think my mom and grandma both were very happy! 🙂

The drive to Philly was uneventful – – I was sure I was going to hit tons of traffic since tomorrow is Mother’s Day, but somehow it was smooth sailing the whole way from DC to Philly. There were a few slow moving parts of the trip, especially around tolls, but I left just before 12 noon and made it by 2:30!

I brought some snacks to munch on in the car. (Don’t worry – these pictures were taken BEFORE my drive, not during.)

A few grapes.

Three mandarins.

And a KIND Bar – Almond & Apricot flavor.  This was SO good, I honestly can’t believe I went on so long without KIND Bars. I was always a little nervous about having a lot of calories in bars just because I feel like I could eat 3 and still not be full, but these are full of nuts and fruit, so they’re not only delicious, but filling too. Stay tuned because I’m going to be doing a reader giveaway for some of these KIND Bars next week!

After I made it to Philly, my sister and I got to work with cooking! We were lucky to have picked a bunch of dishes we could make beforehand and serve at room temp, so dinner time wasn’t stressful at all. After prepping a lot of the dishes for dinner, I was pretty hungry so I had a little bowl of leftover tomato soup

and some half sour pickles.

We took Wendy’s dog, Sadie, on a walk for about 30-45 minutes after that and it felt good to walk around. The day was gorgeous even though it was a little windy so it was so nice to be outside. My parents came around 5 and we set out some appetizers to munch on while we chatted and drank some wine.

Green olives, goat cheese (covered in ash, paprika, herbs, and plain), a goat cheese red pepper spread, and some sliced baguette and crackers. I munched on a little of everything and it was really good even though I’ve had a LOT of goat cheese today. But cheese and I are friends so I didn’t mind too much. 😉

For a first course (or second, depending on how you want to look at it ;)), we had Chilled Beet Soup.

My sister made this by adding a chopped onion, 1.5 pounds of beets, and 5 cups of water to a pot. She cooked it for 40 minutes, and then pureed it with a hand mixer. So simple, but it was INCREDIBLE. (Also,0 WW points for this soup!) We garnished it with some sour cream and fresh chives from her backyard.

The main course was…

Soft Shell Crabs!! One of my absolute favorites but I hadn’t had them in soooo long. We just dipped these in egg wash and then a mixture of cornmeal and flour, and then cooked them in a pan with hot oil for about 2-3 minutes a side. They crisped up and were out of this world.

We had three side dishes to go with the crabs.

A Smoky Pasta Salad that I was in charge of. We just mixed smoked mozzarella, grape tomatoes, fresh basil, olive oil, salt and pepper into the cooked pasta. It was simple but delicious, especially if you like smoky flavors because the mozzarella really popped in this dish.

Roasted Corn and Wild Mushrooms with Arugula Flowers.

Watercress and Endive Salad with homemade vinaigrette.

Here’s my plate:

A softshell crab and some of each of the sides. Everything was delicious, and I was so happy to use those arugula flowers! They are so pretty but added that same peppery flavor you get from regular arugula. And the softshell crabs were just perfect. They’re one of my mom’s favorites too so she was a happy camper, too.

Then came dessert, which was amaaaaaaazing.

Doesn’t that look professional?? My sister and I made it FROM SCRATCH, though she deserves most of the credit.  She was in charge of the crust, and I made the custard filling, and then we topped it with fresh strawberries she picked up at the Farmer’s Market. My piece:

Ahhh it was so good and such an amazing way to end the meal. I don’t know the last time I had something made from scratch that I actually helped make so it tasted that much better! Dinner wrapped up around 8:30 so my parents went home and now I’m just watching a movie with my sis and her hubby.

I am exhauuuusted so will definitely be going to bed soon. I hope Saturday is treating you well, too!

Experiments

Hiya! Good news (for me) is that the Breakfast Cookie kept me full for over 3 hours! 🙂 I’m so excited about that because now it can be a new staple breakfast for me and its so fun to think of different mix-in combos. I’ve always been a little scared of powders of any sort and today was the first day I’ve ever tried any (besides if they put it in a smoothie that I ordered). I think it really makes a difference in making the meal stick to your ribs. 1/2 a scoop of the kind I bought only has 40 calories, but has 8 grams of protein. I think I’ll start adding some to my Green Monsters and possibly to my oatmeal… we’ll see!

One more change I want to make to my diet is that I tend to eat a lot of snacks in the afternoon which I’m sure you’ve noticed if you’ve been reading my blog for a while. I typically have breakfast around 9, lunch around 12:30/1, then 2 or so light snacks around 3 or 4, and then another snack when I get home. I love snacking obviously, but I decided I’m going to try to change it up a bit. My goal is to have a bit more of a substantial snack in the afternoon around 3 or 4 and see if that tides me over so that I don’t have a snack as soon as I get home, too. Today I brought a yogurt with fruit and a weetabix biscuit for an afternoon snack which should pack more of a punch that my normal snacks do, so this will be one experiment for today.

Lunch was awesome today! The star was my very last MorningStar Farms Turk’y Griller. These are definitely my favorite veggie burgers of the ones I’ve tried so far.

I had it on a thomas bagel thin with a wedge of laughing cow cheese, spinach, and red onions. I had the red onions raw but sliced them a little thick to eat raw, so I decided to experiment yet again and put them in the microwave. I added a little bit of water to the bottom of the plate and then put them in the microwave for about a minute. They got soft and tasted sweet like they were sauteed. Definitely a trick I’ll use again!

On the side, I had baby carrots:

Some pickles:

And a little tomato:

I was originally going to slice up the tomato to put on my sandwich, but decided it wasn’t necessary so I just ate it like an apple.

Mmm! I’ll be back tonight and let you know how my larger-snack-in-the-afternoon-experiment goes.

Happy Tuesday!