A little off topic but if you’d humor me…
I am 100% a crazy cat lady. My cats are family. And we recently lost one of our family members.
Scratch was one of my best buds for the last 15 years. Shortly before he passed, I had a shirt made of one of my favorite photos of him. And it’s currently entered in a Facebook contest.
It sounds strange (and even stranger to be opening up on the Internet like this) but I would love to see his picture win as a tribute to him.
If you would consider voting by liking Scratch’s photo – I’d be very grateful.
Click on this sentence or the screenshot of his photo and it will take you to the thread where you can vote. Thank you!
Healthy Solutions Spaghetti and Fried Ravioli
This recipe can be made with or without the ravioli entree, but after a heavy activity day it’s super filling and the ravioli feels like a special treat! You can also just make the spaghetti and top it with an entree to save time. I will sometimes batch cook the spaghetti and portion it out to use over the course of a week – sometimes making it with the ravioli, sometimes eating alone, and sometimes topping with another HMR entree like the penne or lasagna.
NOTE: There is no salt/sodium in the spaghetti without the HMR entree sauce added, so if you are having it by itself, you may want to add some salt to amp up the flavor.
- HMR Ravioli Entree
You will need an air-fryer for this part of the recipe. You could also bake the ravioli or pan fry it if you want. It’s relatively simple! Just scrape the sauce off the ravioli (save it for the spaghetti) and place the ravioli in a single layer in the air-fryer. Cook for 10 minutes at 390 degrees, flipping over once during the cooking process.
Healthy Solutions Spaghetti
- Two cups cooked spaghetti squash (approximately half a small-medium squash)
- 1 small-medium white onion, diced
- 1 large tomato, diced
- 1 tsp Penzey’s Pasta Sprinkles
- 1/2 tsp Penzey’s Roasted Garlic
- Sauce from HMR Ravioli entree
Heat a large frying pan to medium-high heat. You may want to use a quick spritz of cooking spray depending on the pan you have chosen (you can also just occasionally sprinkle water as you cook to keep things from sticking).
Cook the onions for several minutes in the hot pan, stirring frequently, until the onions start to soften and start to become translucent. Add the spaghetti squash and Penzey’s spices. Stir to combine and cook for another two minutes. Add the chopped tomatoes and stir to combine, cook for one more minute. Finally, add the sauce from the raviolis and stir, cooking for approximately one more minute.
Enjoy the spaghetti with the raviolis on top or on the side. You end up with 4 cups of vegetables and an entree as your incredibly filling meal.
Celebrating Pi Day with an #HMRProgram In-The-Box Decision Free Pizza Pie!
Yesterday was my birthday. I was born on Friday, March 13. And to me, it’s always been the BEST day of this particular week. While others might get excited about the Ides of March or Saint Patrick’s Day, I had my own special day to celebrate.
It wasn’t until later in life that I found out Pi Day was even a thing people celebrated. 3.14 – sure I guess that makes sense. And I have some friends and students who REALLY celebrate Pi Day. They go ALL OUT. So as an adult, I have become accustomed to celebrating it as well. Pizza pie, shepherd’s pie, and all the dessert pies you can imagine (which is only funny because I really like cake a lot more than pie, but hey it’s the holiday for pie so it’s a good thing I could have cake the day before!).
Well if you are like many of my friends and students and plan to celebrate PI DAY but are looking for an HMR Program-Friendly option, there’s always the Healthy Solutions Shepherd’s Pie or my Decision Free Pizza Pie! I make this pizza with a BBQ chicken entree, but you could top it with your favorite entrees (or veggies if you are in Healthy Solutions!).
This recipe’s crust is based on my Savory HMR Biscuits – I halved the recipe for the crust and picked out all the big chunks of fruit. Yes it might have a little residual sweetness, but that’s why I top it with the BBQ Chicken Entree – the sauce masks the teeny bits of fruit I might have missed. And no need for cheese! There’s some in the crust which helps extend the flavor!
HMR Diet Decision Free Pizza
- 1 HMR Oatmeal
- 1 HMR Chicken Soup
- 1 TBSP Molly McCheese
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1/2 cup of water and 2 tbsp of water (added at separate times)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Pick out big chunks of fruit from oatmeal.
Mix oatmeal and 1/2 cup of water. Microwave for one minute. Stir and let stand for several minutes.
Add in soup, cheese powder and the remaining 2 tbsp of water. Stir until combined.
Once dough is mixed, add baking powder. Carefully fold in without losing the air bubbles.
Gently pour onto baking pan covered with a silpat mat or parchment paper – gently spread out without letting any breaks occur.
Bake for 15 to 25 minutes until the center is cooked through. Cooking times will vary significantly based on how thick you make it and your personal oven calibration.
After removing from oven, carefully flip onto a plate. This will prevent the underside from getting soggy from the damp heat but will also allow the harder side of the crust to be on the bottom when eating the pizza for a better hold.
My pizza was a BBQ Chicken pizza. I heated up the entree per normal instructions. Then removed the chicken and diced it up. I spread the sauce on the pizza and topped it with the diced chicken. I also added a drizzle of hot sauce and a sprinkle of smoked salt as well as some dried crushed peppers and dried basil. Then I used a pizza cutter and cut the pizza into four slices.
A URL update!
For a few years I have been paying for several domains to allow people to get to the correct Web site – however I have decided to let all but the primary Web address expire.
To reach this blog, please make sure to bookmark http://www.healthyacademic.com
More posts coming soon! It’s been a long break but I am reading to start writing again!
Seeking your HMR Diet entree challenges! And turning up the volume to solve one of mine.
The HMR Diet Beef Stew entree has always one of my least favorite entrees. It wasn’t ever bad, per say, but it just never spoke to me and I never felt fully satisfied eating it alone.
A few months ago, I wrote about a device that I was finding super useful when I travel. And now I keep one in my classroom too! And it’s through the use of this tool that I have been increasing the volume of my entrees, finally finding a way to love the Beef Stew entree.
It’s super easy too! Just one chicken bouillon cube, 1.5 cups of water, and one Beef Stew entree. Throw them all in the mini crockpot and let sit for several hours. It has a super flavorful broth which permeates the chunks of potato and beef cubes, leaving me full and satisfied.
So is there an entree you are having trouble with or often avoid? I love a good challenge and also think crowd-sourcing is a fun way to find new ideas. So please also share your favorite entree “fix-up” here and hopefully it will help someone else!
Traveling on the HMR Program (and a contest!)
I have been on the road a lot since starting the HMR program in November of 2013. From road trips to plane trips, I have brought HMR Diet meal replacements with me. I have even blogged about this in the past, sharing helpful tips for traveling Decision Free and talking about being Decision Free at Disney World.
When visiting a Phase One class earlier this year, a newer student shared about a tool she planned on using while traveling to Vegas (where she wouldn’t be able to access a microwave!). As I have tried to increase my meal replacements (especially when traveling) to crowd out GAP foods in Phase Two, I thought I would check this tool out. And I am in love!
The Crock-Pot Lunch Crock Food-Warmer has now traveled with me to a dorm in Michigan, a hotel in Salt Lake, and my own place of work. I have made soups, stews, and oatmeal in it. I have bulked up many meal replacements using just water and a bullion cube – and enjoyed hot meals on the road!
I wish I had one of these devices when I was in Phase One – but I have since bought one for travel and one for work! I have carried it on planes and have gotten through TSA without a hitch. It’s easy to use, easy to clean, and the perfect size for a hot on-the-road meal. It won’t cook raw food, so don’t try cooking Phase Two raw meats in it, but it’s perfect for heating up meal replacements and traveling with them. Here’s a great review video about the product (warning for Decision Free folks that this video does NOT use meal replacements!).
I am loving it so much that when Crock-Pot had a sale a couple weeks ago, I bought one more of these guys to giveaway here on my blog. Consider it my way of personally saying thank you for following this little corner of the world. I have appreciated the accountability of sharing my journey and have learned so much from many of you.
So this contest will run Monday, June 20 through Wednesday, June 29 and hopefully someone else will love their new device as much as I am loving mine! Use the link below to see how to enter!