Better Than It Started

As I mentioned yesterday, my day did not have the greatest start.  I was raining for starters. After thinking I was doing well, tracking my food and adding exercise, I ended up with a 1.4 gain at Weight Watchers which meant I had to pay which is the unkindest cut of all. 😦

I survived and I’ll do better this week, really, I will! Our WW breakfast group went out after our meeting.  Debbie, Kristen, Pat and I were able to go.  We’ve decided we won’t wait for everyone to be able to go because then we wouldn’t do it.  Whoever’s able to go, goes.  We went to Harrison House Diner in Mullica Hill.  I had something from their low-carb breakfast menu, a Light Start Wrap.  It’s a wrap with eggs, tomato and cheddar cheese with fresh fruit on the side.  It’s supposed to have turkey sausage but we know who asked for that to be left off.  It was very tasty.  Sadly our booth was very crowded and didn’t take any photos.  Kristen didn’t either or I would have bootlegged hers! 😉

We had a lovely time and after hugs all around, I headed to the Amish Farmers Market which is right behind the diner.  There’s a wonderful spice and nut shop in there that has incredible prices and fresh products.  I restrained myself…

I got millet, unsalted sunflower seeds and pumpkin butter.  I’ve been wanting to try millet and I’m running low on sunflower seeds.  These were so inexpensive, compared to what I pay in the grocery store.  I’ve been wanting to try pumpkin butter and this was my chance.  Haven’t opened it yet…looking forward to it! They also have fig jam (mmmm…figs…) but I’ll save that for the next trip!

My project for the afternoon was making chili!  I’ve been saying since before Christmas that I wanted to make it and finally got around to it.  The recipe is adapted from the Country Chili recipe in The TVP Cookbook by Dorothy R. Bates

I’ve had this cookbook for so long I honestly didn’t think I’d find it to provide the link, but there it was on Amazon!  I’m excited.  I got this book years ago when in order to find TVP you had to order from a catalog and call them to send it.  (Yes, that’s how long…BI…Before Internet!)  The pieces came in different sizes in plastic bags…Ralph used to say it looked like kibbles and bits! Fortunately, now it’s available in frozen form from Morningstar Farms.

Here’s the recipe:


1 12 oz. bag of Morningstar Farms Griller Recipe Crumbles

1 large onion chopped

1 red pepper chopped

2 cloves of garlic (or to taste)

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp chili powder

2 tsp cumin

2 tsp oregano

1/2 tsp cayenne

2 (28 oz.) cans tomatoes coarsely chopped

2 (16 oz.) cans black beans, drained and rinsed

2 cups vegetable broth (only add if it’s too thick-you determine)

1 (16 oz.) bag of frozen corn


It may sound to some like it’s a lot of spices but trust me, it’s not.

Saute garlic, onion and red pepper in olive oil

Add crumbles

Add spices

Add tomatoes and black beans (should have thought to make this when I had all those black beans a few weeks back!)

Simmer for 30 minutes to 1 hour and add frozen corn for last 15 minutes of the cooking.

Looking yummy!

I cooked basmati rice to serve the chili over, topped with FF cheddar cheese…

It was just as delicious as I remembered and Ralph agreed!

I usually serve it with corn bread and I attempted that last night.  I think I’ve discovered the reason I had trouble with my pumpkin spice cake last week.  There really is such a thing as a box mix being too old.  I had corn muffin mix that had been in the pantry for, let’s just say “a while.”  I actually checked the “use before” date and I will invoke my 5th Amendment rights here.  I made it anyway so not to disappoint Ralph.  Trust me, it did not turn out well.  😦  However, with a little butter…Ralph thought it was great!  Isn’t that all that really matters? 

The chili recipe makes a lot and I suggested I freeze it so we could have it again in a few weeks.  Ralph thought for a minute then said, “No, I want it again sooner than that!”  I was impressed, and touched.  This had always been one of his favorites and except for the cornbread glitch (apparently only in my opinion), he was a happy man.  I was, too!  Well, not a happy man, but you know what I mean. 😉

Just do me a favor, don’t ask my sister about my first attempt at vegetarian chili…eh hmm…it was too many years ago…my mind is hazy…I take the 5th, your Honor…


2 responses to “Better Than It Started

  1. your first attempt left a little bit to be desired but I have made things that even the dogs would not eat! All further attempts were outstanding. Now if I could only get you to make that delicious vegetarian lazagna! You promised to make that for my birthday…..was that May 20,1999? Why,yes, I believe it was!

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