YOU are serving jambalaya?

We were having guests over to dinner and “everyone” asked, What are you serving?

While that might not sound like trick question to my new readers, my long-timers would sincerely want to know how I could make jambalaya using only four ingredients which is pretty much my limit (due to patience and skill – insert “lack of” before both words).

As we slog through these gray winter months, soups, stews, casseroles and chilis always sound good and warming, but a bit too much trouble considering my four ingredient doctrine. However, if you get two meals out of one recipe, I feel justified in moving to an 8 ingredient dish. Admittedly, I had to drop a few ingredients from the recipe, but our jambalaya tasted great.

And again, I’ve long claimed to not liking leftovers but these are dishes that often improve the second day.

Eating away from home is morphing a bit into full meal take aways from the grocery, ingredient delivered boxes to your doorstep and more fast casual restaurants, you’ll never have more control over your food, your ingredients and your portions than if you prepare your food at home.

Statistics tells us that fruit and vegetable consumption is greater when you eat at home; calorie consumption is about 200 calories less/meal. Sodium, total fat, saturated fat and sugar content of home prepared meals are less too.

Why not ask your family or a few friends what they’re hungry for and consider making a home cooked meal that you control from start to finish. Getting a few meals out of your one-dish-wonder could even save you time and money!

Eat at home to be well,



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Recipe for heavy losses

Recipe for heavy losses was the 17-Across clue from the Wall Street Journal’s puzzle January 9. Having filled in DIE, I could easily surmise DIET was part of the eight letter answer.

Jokes often mention DIET is a four letter word and I agree. Long term, nothing good comes from most diets. Primarily  because people see DIET as a temporary change. Reach your goal (or insert any reason here) and then you quit. Return to your previous diet and re-start the cycle.

All weight loss diets work, that is, effect weight loss but rarely is the weight loss sustainable because the diet is not sustainable: too expensive, too much trouble, too restrictive, too inconvenient…

My heart lightened with the second four letter word answer in 17-across: PLAN.  We professionals admonish “it’s not a diet it’s a lifestyle”, but another way to say it is “a healthy PLAN”.

Any plan is better than no plan. Think about it in other areas of your life. Do you have a plan for your work? A plan for the weekend? A plan that your child cleans his room? (OK, that’s more like a prayer, but you get the idea.) You even plan for doing laundry. You check your calendar and your closet, you recognize the sequence (wash before dry) and you mostly follow fabric label  directions.

What is your diet PLAN? Do you check your calendar to figure out what meals you will make and which ones you’ll eat out in the coming week? Do you check your cupboards/fridge/freezer to see what’s on hand? Do you plan time and money for grocery shopping? Is there a list?

No one plans bad diet habits, they just happen. But that doesn’t have to be.

If you’d like to drop a few pounds, DIET wasn’t the key to “recipe for heavy losses”. A PLAN is key; your health is as important as your laundry, right?

PLAN to be well,


PS It’s been so long since I posted, but life happens (especially without a plan). So, Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year, Happy Groundhog Day and anything in between I missed!

PPS And yes, I was slightly embarrassed that I knew Robert Matthew Van Winkle is Vanilla Ice.

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