It was so nice to cook dinner last night and it was still light out.  Now I just can’t wait to bring out our gazebo chairs and be able to sit outside – that’s one of our favorite things to do at night. 😀

Yesterdays breakfast was a favorite, and each time I have it I wonder why I wait so long between eating it.  Two tostadas, 3/4 cup egg beaters (still 2 points the same as a 1/2 cup!), 1/3 cup refried beans, 3/4 cup cheddar cheese and salsa – a very filling 9 point breakfast.

I made beef stew over the weekend, hoping that the tender meat and veggies might be something Tony could eat – he ended up eating about 1/2 a cup with some rice on Sunday.  My store didn’t have beef stew meat on sale, so I bought this roast and chunked the meat myself.  I adapted this recipe from Once Upon a Chef – lowering the meat amount by half to save on calories, adding more carrots and potatoes and, or course, leaving out the onions.

Beef Stew with Potatoes & Carrots

  • makes 6, 1 1/2 cup servings = 8 PointsPlus

(adapted from Once Upon A Chef)


  • 2 pounds of boneless beef chuck (or other marbled meat)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 7 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (love the addition of this!)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 2 cups beef broth
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 teaspoon thyme
  • 5 large carrots, peeled and cut on an angle
  • 1 pound potatoes, peeled and cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen peas


  1. Preheat oven to 325.
  2. Pat beef dry and season with salt and pepper.  In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat olive oil over medium-high heat and sear the meat all over – about 5-8 minutes – don’t overcrowd the pot – do in batches.  Transfer meat with juices to a bowl.
  3. Add garlic and balsamic vinegar (making sure your face isn’t over the pot!) and stir, scraping bits off the bottom of the pot.  Add tomato paste and cook for a few more minutes.  Add beef with juices back into the pot, sprinkle with flour and cook until the flour is dissolved – about 2 minutes.  Add wine, beef broth, water, thyme and stir to combine and bring to a boil.  Cover pot with tight fitting lid and braise in the oven for 2 hours.
  4. Remove pot from oven and add carrots and potatoes, cover and cook an additional 45 minutes.  Add in frozen peas and cook an additional 15 minutes.
this is the meat I used – turned out perfectly tender
searing the meat is key – don’t skip this step

After two hours – your house will smell wonderful!

I had a bowl for my lunch yesterday – but prior to working out – one of my co-workers brought me some cranberry walnut bread – it was the perfect pre-workout snack – thanks V!

3 points

For my workout I did 35 minutes on the treadmill – 24:40 was my two mile time yesterday 😀 and then I did a 3.3 mile bike ride on the new machine they have – its just like the regular bike machine with the scenes you can pick, but it was recumbent.  I actually thought it would be easier – but turns out you can’t stand up when you have a hill climb on a recumbent bike!  It was a nice 50 minute workout.

The apple side salad was so easy – 1/2 a diced peeled apple, some baby spinach and 1 tablespoon light Italian dressing – as my co-worker called it – a palate cleanser after the stew! 😀  Lunch comes in at 9 points.

My local library is small, but I am lucky that it is a lending library – only problem is that it may take weeks (or months!) to get a book in.  I got two over the weekend – first up was America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook and Ellie Krieger’s So Easy.  Last nights dinner was adapted from So Easy.  I rewrote the recipe to serve 2 and left out the THREE CUPS of onions.

Tri-Colored Pepper Steak

  • Makes 2 servings – 6 Points Plus per serving (not including brown rice)

(adapted from Ellie Krieger’s So Easy Cookbook)


  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced peppers, any color
  • 3/4 pound top round, London broil or flank steak, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 3/4 cup beef broth
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • cracked pepper to taste
  • 3/4 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1/8 cup water
  • 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper

Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Add the beef and cook until browned on all sides – about 5 minutes.  Transfer the beef and juices to a bowl.

Spray Pam and add the peppers and cook for 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook another minute, making sure not to burn the garlic (which I almost did!).  Return the beef to the skillet and add the broth, wine, soy sauce and pepper.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Stir in the dissolved cornstarch and cook an additional 2 minutes.  Serve over perfectly made brown rice. I had 3/4 cup cooked brown rice – so dinner was 10 points.

here is the meat I used – just under 3/4 of a pound
this was delicious!!

Stats for Monday:

  • 38 points (including 6 points of wine)
  • 8 activity points earned
  • average blood sugar was 112

Have a great Tuesday!