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Enjoy a little brie

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I had the pleasure of attending a dinner party for one of my closest friends last night, and she had brie as an appetizer!   How perfect.  She served it with fig jam, which is wonderfully sweet next to the mild brie.  She also had a caprese salad, pasta with home made vodka and  bolognese sauces, and home made ice cream.  She is a wonder!  Here is my plate with two of the appetizers:

The brie is on the right, on a cracker, topped with the fig jam.

This got me thinking that I should post some brie recipes.  Here are three of my favorites.

1. Brie Sandwich:

Get a good piece of bread (french bread or any artisan bread) and put a few artichoke hearts on it.  Lay some slices of brie over the artichoke hearts, and sprinkle sliced almonds over the top.  Heat in the oven or microwave until the brie melts enough to hold it all together.  Add another slice of bread on top, or eat open-face.  This can be a full sandwich for lunch, or small canapes for appetizers.

2. Brie and zucchini:

Slice the zucchini part way, lengthwise (making slits in the vegetable, without cutting all the way through).  Take slices of brie and insert them into the slits of the zucchini.  Bake or grill until the zucchini is soft and the brie is melted.  Cut the zucchini into canapes, perpendicular to your original slices.  Everyone gets a striped appetizer that is very yummy!

3. Brie with raspberry sauce:

Place one brie cheese round in a microwave-safe 9-inch pie plate. Spread raspberry preserves over the top. Microwave at 50% power for 2 minutes, or until warmed through. Sprinkle with sliced almonds and serve warm.
Serve this with crackers and/or apple slices.

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On a journey toward health

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Marco and I are on a slow transition toward a healthy lifestyle.  My parents always told me how hard it would be to lose weight as an adult, and now I realize how correct they were.  I was a cheerleader in high school, and I worried about my weight, but I had toned arms, toned legs, and an abundance of energy.  College taught me to give in to my cravings and to appreciate beer.  After college, I developed a love for things like brie sandwiches, white cheddar popcorn, and Heath bar ice cream.  Here are some pictures of me after college, with three of my dearest friends.  You can see the progression; not a terrible change, but I definitely became top-heavy by my 23rd birthday:

On a road trip.

Hula hooping in our apartment!

My 23rd birthday.

 

In the past few years, Marco has begun battling diabetes.  His mother is diabetic, so it was not a surprise to him.  We have had to give up some of our favorite recipes, like chile relleno casserole and tater tot casserole.  One recipe we have both enjoyed is strawberry salad.  I bought a book about reversing diabetes, which had a recipe for Indian lentil soup.  I love it, but Marco is not a fan.
After a few days of lentil soup, we both lost about five pounds.  I will keep you posted on new recipes and exercise ideas.

Chile Relleno Casserole: slice up poblano or pasilla chiles and put them in the bottom of a casserole dish.  Brown 1 pound of ground beef and spread half of it over the chile slices.  Pour half a bottle of Herdez salsa over all of it, and top it off with shredded cheese.  Repeat with another layer of the same.  Cook until golden and bubbly in the oven at 350 degrees.  Serve with sour cream and avocados.

Tater tot casserole with bratwurst

Strawberry salad: salad greens with sliced strawberries, radishes, celery, red onion, pears or apples, and anything else you like that’s crunchy (carrots, watercress, etc.).  I use raspberry vinaigrette on this, and it’s like dessert before the meal!

Indian lentil soup: this is from a book called The 30-Day Diabetes Miracle

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