two skinny jenkins

090421 – burgers + sweet potato fries
090421, 10:07 pm
Filed under: DINNER | Tags: ,

img_3303it’s FREE CONE DAY at BEN & JERRY’S, so i decided that i should make something nice and light for dinner…oops.  that was my original intent anyway.  then i realized that the sweet potatoes were peaking, and we happened to have some ground beef in the freezer.  so i had to make sweet potato fries and burgers.  it was filling, but really good.

the burgers i just marinated in Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce for an hour, then grilled in our cast iron skillet.


  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into fries
  • 2 T canola oil
  • 3 T taco seasoning
  • pinch of cayenne powder
  • pinch of cinnamon
  • bit of salt
  1. toss the fries together with all the seasonings in a large bowl
  2. preheat oven to 425° and bake on a sheet for 30 min, then flip them and bake another 20-30 min, until browning.

094021 – guacamole
090421, 9:56 pm
Filed under: SNACK | Tags: , ,


ever since i sampled the guacamole at Oyamel in DC, made table-side with a mortar and pestle, i have been making my own at home and LOVING IT.  it is so easy to make, and can be affordable when the avocados are in season.

i made the chips by slicing up some tortillas, brushing with evoo, sprinkling with sea salt, and broiling on each side on high for a minute.

  • 2 ripe avocados (preferably Haas)
  • juice of 1 lime
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • approx 1/3 T FINELY chopped onion
  • 1/2 C canned diced tomatoes, drained
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • S + P
  1. squeeze lime juice over avocado in small mixing bowl.  Use a fork to crush the avocado.
  2. mix in remaining ingredients and salt and pepper to taste.

090420 – fantastic salad
090420, 10:30 pm
Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: , ,


this was such a treat.  this salad was like candy!  i have read somewhere that eating avocado with other foods helps your nutrient absorption.  i wish i had allowed a good hour and fifteen to prepare all the ingredients (mainly the beets), because i was pressed and had to cut corners (turned up the oven).

  • 3 medium beets, peeled and cut into 6-8 wedges
  • 3 T minced onion
  • 1/4 C balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 C olive oil
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1/2 C (or so) dried cranberries
  • 1/3 C feta cheese
  • romaine lettuce
  • 1/2 C walnuts
  • 3 T brown sugar
  • 1 T canola oil


  1. preheat oven to 425°
  2. to make dressing, mix together balsamic vinegar, evoo, and onion in medium sized bowl.  toss beets in dressing and let marinate while the oven heats up.
  3. bake beets for 25 min, then flip and bake another 20 min, or until soft through.


  1. heat canola oil and brown sugar (and a tiny pinch of cayenne pepper) in medium saucepan with walnuts.  keep stirring as the sugar caramelizes and begins to coat the nuts (about 5 minutes).
  2. when the sugar is fully caramelized, remove from heat and pour the nuts onto a piece of parchment or a plate to cool.  THEY LOOK NICE, BUT ARE VERY HOT AND WILL BURN YOU.  i found this out the hard way…

    090420 – mac n’ cheese
    090420, 10:17 pm
    Filed under: DINNER, LUNCH | Tags: ,


    this is secret family recipe material.  it is  SOOO good!  it is one of joe’s recipes and this is the first time i have made it.  unlike boxed mac n’ cheese, it actually tastes good the next day!  I used some nice sharp Cabot cheese (we usually buy store brand but it was on super sale) and i think that added a lot to it.  Next time i might use a tad more Worcestershire sauce.

    • 2 C elbow macaroni
    • 2 C skim milk
    • 2 T corn starch
    • 6-8 oz. cheddar cheese, shredded
    • 2 1/2 t Worcestershire sauce
    • S+P to taste
    1. cook macaroni in pot of boiling water 1 min less than indicated, then preheat oven to 350°
    2. in a small saucepan, whisk together milk and corn starch, turn to medium heat and continually whisk until it begins to bubble
    3. take milk off the heat, stir in cheese, Worcestershire, and s+p.
    4. mix together pasta and sauce in baking dish and cook for 12-15 min in preheated oven.

    090419 – lasagna rolls
    090419, 10:15 pm
    Filed under: DINNER | Tags: , ,

    img_3283_2these were good and EASY!  i had half a container of rocotta left over from the baked giagantoni i made last week.  i also just so happened to have 12 lasagna noodles left over.  we happened to have a bag of frozen spinach on hand, and in the interest of pizza night, we ALWAYS have plenty of mozzarella in our fridge.

    cream sauce:

    i usually shy away from cream sauces, but i used skim milk for this and it tasted great and was an essential part of the dish.

    • 1 1/4 C SKIM milk
    • 4 t flour
    • 2 T butter
    • salt and pepper
    • pinch of nutmeg
    1. melt butter on med-low in a saucepan, add flour and whisk for 3 minutes.
    2. whisk in milk, and continually whisk at med-high heat until bubbling.  add spices and remove from heat.


    • 14 oz. part skim rocatta cheese
    • 1 C parmesan cheese
    • 10 oz. frozen spinach, thawed and drained (i rinsed the frozen spinach with cool water to speed up the thawing process)
    • 12 lasagna noodles
    • 1 egg, lightly beaten
    • 3/4 t salt
    • 1/2 t fresh ground black pepper
    • 2 C marinara sauce
    • 1 C mozzarella
    1. preheat oven to 450°. bring large pot of (lightly) salted water to boil and cook 12 lasagna sheets 1-2 min less than the package suggests.
    2. make the sauce and pour into 13 x 9 x 3 inch baking dish
    3. in a med bowl, mix together egg, ricotta, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and spinach.
    4. spread 3 T of ricotta mixture over one lasagna noodle, curl up from the end and place seam down in the sauce.
    5. cover with 1 C of marinara and 1 C mozzarella, then bake covered for 20 min in preheated oven. remove foil and bake for 12-15 more min, until cheese begins to  brown.


    090419 – Rumpass in Bumpass
    090419, 7:18 pm
    Filed under: MULTISPORT

    my first triathlon and joe’s second.  it sure puts the Ironman that we talked about doing one day in perspective!  we are both rethinking our goal tie for the  (MUCH hillier) Olympic distance race we have scheduled for 1 month from now.


    ME – here i go on my bike, Tracy trek, right after a 3 minute (slow) transition!  between the long transition and all the second/triple guessing i did during the swim, i still somehow managed to get second place for my age group!


    JOE –  elbowing this old guy to the finish line… i won’t mention what muscle he pulled in the process.


    JEFF – is one tough man.  one of four, actually, out of the 500+ people at the race without a wetsuit.  he sure looks happy to be exiting that 62° water!

    FYI: our training program:

    094019 – rumpass in bumpass
    090419, 11:18 am
    Filed under: MULTISPORT


    My first triathlon!!!  My first open water swim in the first wetsuit i have ever donned.  I was so glad to have it – Lake Anna was a brisk 62° F.  Our friend, Jeff, was one of the four brave souls (of 500+ people) who did not wear one. Even though the water was a little murky, you could still see scads of fish swimming about 10 Ft below the surface.  I had not practiced the transition from swimming to biking before, so that was pretty slow.  my feet and arms were slightly numbed by the water and not entirely cooperative.  The bike was nice and FLAT.  REALLY gentle rolling hills.  the run definitely felt awkward at first, but i warmed up as i went along.  5 K felt pretty short and by the end of it i was finally feeling loosened up.