I made Cincinnati chili last night, and the bambino refused to eat his 3-Way. Jay asked why, and the bambino said “Chili too hot, Daddy.” Jay pointed out that by the time he left the table, the chili was cool enough for the bambino to eat. The bambino looked up at the ceiling for a minute and said “No, not hot…Chili too…’picy. How ’bout French fries instead?” I’d been planning on making a Weight Watchers Greek-style lemon chicken & potato dish, but when I asked the bambino if that was okay, he repeated his request for French fries. So I obliged. I did homemade chicken tenders to go along with my homemade fries, although since Jay & I don’t mind spice, I tossed ours in buffalo sauce. Yum. Here’s all I did:

For the fries, I peeled & sliced my 3 remaining organic Russets, then tossed them in about a tablespoon of olive oil & some seasoning salt (McCormick, I think). Then I spread the in a single layer on a baking sheet (lined with parchment paper, because I am lazy & didn’t want extra clean-up), and popped them in a 400°F oven for 45 minutes (tossing them after about 20 minutes):

For the chicken tenders, I sliced up 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, soaked them in milk, then tossed them in a bag with about 1/2 C of flour, some garlic salt, onion powder, black pepper, and some paprika. Then I fried them in canola oil:

I heart my cast-iron skillet for such meals.

After they were done (about 4 minutes per side, since I’d sliced them a little thick), I drained them on paper towels:

Like the BBQ Meatballs the other night, at this point, I wanted to sample them. And since I’m always paranoid that I’ll somehow undercook the chicken, the bambino & I did a couple quality checks on some of the smaller tenders. I kept them warm in the toaster oven while I mixed up the buffalo sauce:

2 tablespoons of butter, and probably 1/2 C of the wing sauce. Mmmm…buffalo sauce….And by that point, the fries were done, so it was time to eat:

And yes, that is my Spock Burger King glass in the background. I don’t know why (other than the obvious fact that Spock is awesome, and my favorite Star Trek character, next to Bones, and Capt. Picard) I am hugely possessive of that glass, and I get rather annoyed when I find that Jay’s gotten to it before I have once it’s been washed.


The first day back to work after Daylight Savings Time always drags. I spent most of the morning wishing for 5 o’clock, then got busy enough that around 3, I was wishing that the clock on my phone was correct, and it was the clock on my computer that was incorrect (someone forgot to update the clock on the phones until after 4 this afternoon). I was pleased to discover when I got home that I still have a back yard, and that there is greenish grass underneath the melting snow and amid the mud.

I also discovered that Popchips are evil. Kendra was kind enough to get me a subscription to the Weight Watchers magazine for my birthday last year, and they occasionally have ads for Popchips. Living in Nowhere, SoDak, they don’t carry them anywhere around here, but I did find them in the Sioux Falls Target last evening when we were there. So I bought some. Big mistake. I held off on opening the bag until this evening, then proceeded to eat 95% of it. There’s still a handful of crumbs left, and the bambino had a couple little-man handfuls, but I pretty much cleaned out the bag on my own. I have a bag of salt & vinegar ones that are taking all my willpower to stay away from. I’ll probably stuff those in my craw tomorrow night while I watch The Biggest Loser.

In between shoveling in Popchips, I made a nice dinner. A take on grilled cheese & tomato soup, but a little fancier, if you will. Beefy Tomato Pasta Soup:

(This is before I tossed a large handful of croutons on top)

And grilled cheese panini (No recipe here–Just a couple slices of homemade bread and a slice of organic cheddar; slather both sides with butter, and grill on a panini press):

Thanks to the Popchips, I was only able to eat half of it, and left a bit of pasta in my soup bowl. Despite the bambino taking 2 microscopic bites from his sandwich and zero bites of his soup, it went over well-enough, as Jay ate my other sandwich half along with his whole, and cleaned out his soup bowl. For whatever reason, I felt I needed some hot cocoa after all was said and done, and I am now here at my computer regretting it. Good thing I’m already in flannel elastic-waist pants!

I kind of like my mundane Saturday ritual…The bambino & I go to the grocery store, he gets some chocolate milk & crackers to munch while we shop, and I get a cup of coffee so that I don’t maim or bite someone’s head off due to lack of caffeine. I’m thinking that I’m going to have to up my grocery budget if possible, if I’m going to continue buying organic or natural. I can’t wait until the farmers’ market starts up in a couple more months…And we can get our garden up & running. Granted, since this will be our first year attempting a vegetable garden, I’m trying not to have too high of hopes, but if I can at least get some decent tomato soup and/or pasta sauce out of it, I’ll be happy.

I bought a couple containers of Oikos this morning, to give them another try. I think, though, I prefer Chobani, when it comes to Greek yogurt. For one, it’s about 50 cents cheaper than Oikos. And it’s just a hint milder-tasting. I see that Dannon and Yoplait also have Greek-style yogurts out now as well, but I don’t think I’ll be trying them. I’ve read a few online reviews that say they aren’t that good, and I’ve been trying to stay away from as much HFCS as I can. I will say, though, that my Oikos Vanilla tasted pretty good with the Bear Naked Maple Pecan granola I also bought. I usually make my own granola, but I neglected to buy pecans, and I’ve got enough other things to try & accomplish today that I didn’t want to bother.

Jay’s been really nice this week, and treated us to dinners out 3 nights in a row. As such, the only meat that I bought was some Organic Prairie Ground Beef (I had a coupon), and some steaks that the bambino requested (which were on sale). Everything else I got was either to restock the pantry (spaghetti, broth, bananas, potatoes) or necessities (diapers, napkins). Since I haven’t cooked in 4 or 5 days, I can pretty much reuse the menu I made last week. I’ll tweak it a little bit, but I haven’t really cooked since Tuesday night.

I’m planning on maybe getting the laundry done this afternoon, since it looks like we’re going to Sunday dinner with the in-laws tomorrow. That way, I can fix breakfast in the morning (after Meet the Press), and make some bread after we get back.