Sunday, June 28, 2009

Can Good Brownies Be Lowfat?

Did I mention I love brownies? Hands down, it is my all time favorite dessert. My mom apparently realizes this, because every time I make a trip home we make brownies (which will be in addition to any other desserts my mom makes). I'm a nuts-in-my brownies kind of girl. But it's hard to make everyone in this house happy, so we don't typically add pecans or walnuts. I have been known to add nuts to half the pan before baking.

I will save my post about box brownies versus home made, simply because this Trader Joe's find is recent and deserves a post. I enjoy sweets and almost never make them lowfat. I am a big believer in eating really tasty, yummy ones in moderation (ok, ok, so I've eaten half the pan, too, which does not count as moderation). They are just so much more delightful when you can taste the buttery crisp-ness on the edge of a chocolate chip cookie, or the most fudgy-ness of a good brownie. But in my house we have a rule that each week we need to bring home 1 experimental item from TJ's. So I finally gave in and bought the No Pudge Fudge Brownie Mix.

I'm a fan. They were the right combination of crispy on the top and gooey in the middle. I will admit I probably even ate more of the pan this time. I would consider doubling the recipe with another box and cooking in the same 8x8 pan for a thicker brownie.

I'm not sure how they perfected this mix, but it's good. And at a great TJ's price.

Friday, June 26, 2009

30 Days to Go!

I am doing the NYC Triathlon for the 3rd time this year. I picked up the sport after the end of a relationship and a 6 month stint on I thought it would be a good challenge for a new year, and completed my first one in 3:06!

I couldn't have done the race in 2006 without Team in Training, and really believe that anyone can accomplish an athletic goal with this great organization. And it supports a really great cause.

With extra time on my hands these days, I've committed to training more this year and use to track my training. I'm pretty obsessive about it and don't miss a workout (even if it means I have to double up one day). And now I own a bike, bike gear, clip pedals, many swimsuits, a wetsuit...and so can't retire yet.

This is a shot from the day before the race in 2006, with all the bikes ready to go for the next day.

At one point earlier this year, I committed to a half ironman in CA. I think this is going to have to be a goal for another year, as I wasn't ready to train so many hours each day. So I set a 3 hour goal for this race. With 30 days to go, I'm not sure yet this is possible. The posting from a bschool classmate (with a 2:35 time) made me wonder if 3 hours wasn't enough of a goal. And then when I added up a 30 minutes swim, 1:30 bike ride and hour's hard to figure out where I'm really going to cut time out.

After a few minutes of analysis, I realized I can cut the most time from the bike ride. My tush would agree, as it doesn't like to sit for hours on the small seat on a bumpy road! But my legs can only go so fast, and as I watch the beer belly 50 year old men whiz by on their $5K bikes, I wonder what I'm doing wrong here.

Oh, and my flat tire strategy: Right now I pray every time before I head out, and take $20 to get a cab home.

jack (jill) of all trades, master of none?

I've finally decided to give this a try, so let's be done with this first post! I sometimes wonder if I have alot of interests, but am not an expert in anything! So this is a little about me, what I'm doing, what I like:

1. All things baking. I love brownies, I love cookies, I love cake. I love to bake them all. I don't have a family of 10 to share all these treats with. Good thing we walk alot in New York. Alas, I'm not a top chef like my friend Emmie. If it requires more than 5 ingredients it's not going to be made in my apartment.

2. Gadgets. I'm a gadget girl now, care of MB. TechCrunch, VentureBeat, ValleyWag, Gizmodo. I like to read them all. The most I've managed is an iphone, a completely wireless computer setup (wireless internet, keyboard, mouse). I couldn't survive without my Google Reader for RSS feeds. I get my media online now, streaming HD. I really can't afford to be an early adopter, though.

3. Triathlons. I gear up for one a year, and wish I did more. This is a recent interest, within the last 3 years. I do my best, enjoy the training, achieving the goal.


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