Hi, my name is Jen and I’m addicted to roasted broccoli

Hi there!

Did you get smacked by the Nor’easter that blew through last night?

We didn’t get snow 😦  but we definitely got the cold. And the wind. And the windchill factor.



The forecast for tomorrow is not any warmer, either. To the tune of about 19 degrees in the morning. And that’s without the potential wind chill factor.

Good thing I have lined running tights! I’m pretty sure I’ll be running my final long run kinda quick tomorrow. 🙂

So, I have a new favorite way of making vegetables, especially broccoli.

I actually think I may be addicted.

I don’t know what took me so long to try it.

Have you ever roasted broccoli in the oven?


I mean, I’ve roasted veggies with chickens, pork roasts, etc and I’ve roasted potatoes, bell peppers, tomatoes and onions but for some reason, I never did broccoli.

Oven roasted broccoli is seriously the BEST. THING. EVER.

Well, not according to Thing 2 but she’s crazy. Teenagers, sheesh!

I could seriously eat roasted broccoli every single day.

So, I picked up one of those fancy bags of precut broccoli, cauliflower and carrots.

I had big, big plans for those veggies. BIG.

And, I figured since there was cauliflower and carrots in there, Thing 2 wouldn’t fuss as much if I roasted broccoli – AGAIN.

Yeah, that didn’t work out as planned but I didn’t care.

So, here’s how you do it.

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly spray with nonstick spray.

Trust me on that. I didn’t do it once and I was peeling foil off the broccoli.

Put all your lovely cut up broccoli (and cauliflower and carrots, if you want) on that baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. How much you use is completely up to you – I used about a tablespoon for this batch.


Toss all the veggies in the oil and then sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Then, if you’re a garlic fanatic like me or really worried about vampires, slice up a few cloves of garlic and toss those on the pan.

Give the pan a final toss and get it into the oven.

Roast those babies for about 20-25 minutes.

roasted veggies

If your smoke detector goes off, you may have roasted them a little too long.  But, it’s okay, slightly burnt broccoli is AMAZING!

If you don’t like it, call me. I’ll come eat it. Really.

Om nom nom!

 Talk to me: What’s your favorite way to serve broccoli?

– jennifer

13.2. I love grilling! Summer Grilled Vegetable Pizza

So, I’m sitting here contemplating Crossfit tonight. I must admit – I’m a little really nervous. Our warm-up includes a 400m run which I can’t do. My first appointment with the physical therapist is tomorrow and while my leg is feeling better, that doesn’t mean I’m ready to run. Okay, well, I’m always ready to run but I have to lay low when my body revolts. Then, the WOD is a rehashing of 13.2.

Box jumps. Can I do it? Will my leg cooperate? On May 23rd, I could barely go up and down the stairs. I’ll give it a shot. I may NEED a shot just to help shut down the nervous voices in my head!


Um, maybe not so much.

Anyway, I’ll let you know how it goes. 🙂

I Love Grilling

I really do.  We grill year round.  Yes, we live in Florida and we can do that but when we lived in Maryland and it snowed (who remembers the Snowpacalypse of 2010? I sure do. I think I gained 5 pounds stuck in inside baking and nesting away!), I always dug out the grill because when a girl wants a steak, a girl’s gotta have a steak!  And besides, we always grill our turkeys or hams for the holidays and that is definitely going to continue to happen whether there’s 4 feet of snow on the ground or not! 🙂

After the luau on Saturday night, I was totally in the mood for grilling and, in fact, most of my planned meals this week are grilled.  It’s my hurricane training plan when, if a big one comes and the power goes out, grilling will be the only way we have to cook.  Oh, we have two grills – one gas with a side burner and a charcoal.  We are totally set!  So long as they don’t blow away!  I won’t grill inside – that would just be stupid – but I will bring the grill inside for safekeeping if I have to!  Oh, and btw, my fingers are totally crossed for zero hurricanes this summer.  I’m not really a natural disaster kind of girl. So, cross your fingers too, please. I need all the help I can get!

In addition to most being grilled, all of my recipes this week come from one Cooking Light magazine!  The June 2012 issue is just packed with yummy recipes that just beg to be made.  If you are normal (not like me) and don’t just happen to have the June 2012 issue of Cooking Light magazine laying around your house, you can find the recipes online. 🙂

Who wants pizza?  Me, me, me!  I made this whole recipe on the grill.  The recipe calls for using an oven to bake the crust but, I can never find refrigerated pizza dough down here so I just buy Boboli pizza crusts and those are most definitely grillable.  All you have to do is brush the top (where you’ll put the toppings) with olive oil and chopped garlic and a little salt and pepper and throw it, top side down, on the grill for a 2-4 minutes.  Watch it to make sure it doesn’t burn!  That would not be delicious.  Then, take it off, flip it over, top it with your toppings, and put it back on the grill (lid closed) for 8-10 minutes until the cheese is all melty, gooey and the crust is nice and toasty brown.  Now, remember that you’re cooking on a grill and when cheese melts, it drips, so…..make sure you don’t get the cheese too close to the edge of the crust.  You don’t want your pizza to catch fire.  Not good.  Anyway, grilled summer veggies, a flavorful sauce, and yummy cheese and light to boot?  Win!  Om nom nom!

Do you love grilling as much as I do?

What’s your favorite meal to grill?


Summer Grilled Vegetable Pizza

1 pound refrigerated fresh pizza dough
1 red bell pepper, seeded and quartered
1 zucchini, cut into 1/4-inch thick diagonal slices
1 yellow squash, cut into 1/4-inch thick diagonal slices
1 small red onion, cut into 12 wedges
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon cornmeal
1/2 cup lower sodium marinara sauce
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
6 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced and torn into pieces (if you have shredded, use it!)

1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.

2. Remove dough from refrigerator. Let stand at room temperature, covered, for 30 minutes.

3.  Place a pizza stone or heavy baking sheet in oven. Preheat oven to 500° (keep pizza stone or baking sheet in oven as it preheats).

4.  Flatten bell pepper pieces with hand. Arrange all the vegetables in a single layer on a large cutting board or baking sheet; brush both sides with 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Arrange onion wedges on skewers, if desired. Arrange vegetables on grill rack coated with cooking spray, and grill for 3 minutes on each side or until crisp-tender and grill marks appear. Remove from grill. Coarsely chop bell pepper.


5.  Roll dough into a 14-inch circle on a lightly floured surface, and pierce entire surface liberally with a fork. Carefully remove pizza stone from oven. Sprinkle cornmeal over pizza stone; place dough on pizza stone. Bake at 500° for 5 minutes. Remove the partially baked crust from oven. Spread sauce over crust, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Arrange the vegetables over dough, and sprinkle evenly with salt and crushed red pepper. Top evenly with cheese. Carefully return pizza to pizza stone. Bake at 500° for an additional 12 minutes or until the crust and cheese are browned. Brush edge of dough with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil. Cut into 6 large slices.

6. FOR GRILLED PIZZA: Alternatively, brush Boboli crust with 1 tablespoon olive oil and 1 minced garlic clove.  Grill, oil side down, for 2-4 minutes, or until golden.  Flip and remove to cutting board. Top with sauce, grilled vegetables and cheese.  Return to grill and grill, lid closed for 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted and crust is golden brown.  Remove to cutting board and cut into slices.

– jennifer

Some random stuff and Beef and Vegetable Pot Pie

I was able to hit the Fresh Market this past weekend. I stocked up. Um, can you say addicted? 🙂


I may have mentioned that I have created my own cookbook from recipes found in magazines, the newspaper, and the internet. That is a project I’ve been working on for the past year or so. It’s coming along quite nicely, I think.


I grab these binders and flip through them, usually while I’m eating breakfast. I use those little sticky flags to mark my pages of the upcoming week’s recipes. Sometimes, Ginny…. aka my supervisor…


decides to remove those sticky flags for me. She’s so helpful. Anyway, one of the recipes I recently made was found in my handy dandy notebook. It came from an old Cooking Light magazine. A very old magazine. Like….1998. Did I mention I’m the wife of a sailor? Yeah, that means that magazine has moved around a lot. What? Packrat? Who, me? 🙂

A recipe from the book – no idea the year. Who doesn’t love pot pie? It’s everything that is good in the world all together in one simple dish. Make it quick, easy and healthy and you’ve achieved dinner nirvana. Pull up your chair and grab your fork. You’re definitely going to want to dig in to this one!


Beef and Vegetable Pot Pie
Yield: 6 servings

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
1 lb ground sirloin
2 cups chopped zucchini
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrot
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 package (8 ounces) sliced mushrooms*
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 can (14-ounce) reduced-fat, low-sodium beef broth
2 tablespoons corn starch
2 tablespoons water
Cooking spray
1 (11-ounce) can refrigerated soft breadstick dough

*mushrooms = EW
If you feel the same way, you can certainly leave them out. I substituted yellow squash.
Yellow squash = YUM

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Heat 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef; cook 3 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Drain. Wipe drippings from pan with a paper towel. Heat remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons oil in pan. Add zucchini and next 6 ingredients (through garlic); sauté 7 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Return beef to pan. Stir in wine, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, pepper, and broth. Bring to a boil; cook 3 minutes. Combine cornstarch and 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl; stir with a whisk. Add the cornstarch mixture to the pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.

3. Spoon beef mixture into an 11 x 7-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Separate breadstick dough into strips. Arrange strips in a lattice fashion over beef mixture. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until browned.

Per serving:
Calories 313; Fat 8.5g (saturated 1.7g, mono 3.0g, poly 0.7g); Protein 22g; Carb 37.6g; Fiber 2.7g; Sodium 679mg; Cholesterol 40


Recipe from Cooking Light