On the Menu This Week

Greek Style Cheeseburgers
Vegetarian Black Bean Chili
Roasted Cornish Hens with Quinoa and Broccoli

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Recipe of the week 10/31/09

Tuscan Roasted Chicken and Vegetables


  • 6 Roma tomatoes (about 1 pound)
  • 3 medium zucchini (about 1/2 pound each)
  • 1 bulb fennel
  • 3 tablespoons oil, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 4 chicken breast halves skinless, bone-in (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon fresh chopped rosemary leaves or 1 teaspoon dried


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut the tomatoes lengthwise into quarters and remove the seeds. Trim the zucchini and cut it in half crosswise and then cut each piece in half lengthwise once if the piece is thin and twice if it is thicker, so that the pieces are relatively uniform.

Remove the outermost layer of the fennel bulb and discard. Cut the bulb in half so that each half retains part of the stem end. Cut each half into 8 thin wedges so each wedge is held together by a little piece of stem.

Put the vegetables into a large baking pan. Toss them with 2 tablespoons oil and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Arrange the chicken pieces in the pan with the vegetables.

In a small bowl combine 1 tablespoon of oil, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, the garlic, lemon zest and lemon juice. Rub the mixture into the chicken in the pan. Season with a few turns of pepper.

Roast in the oven for 30 minutes, then give the vegetables a stir and add the rosemary. Cook for about 20 to 30 minutes more until the chicken is done and the vegetable are tender and beginning to brown.

Yield: 4 servings (A serving is one piece of chicken and 1 1/2 cups of vegetables)

Nutrition Facts

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving

Calories 410
Total Fat 13.5g
Saturated Fat 2.2g
Cholesterol 132mg
Sodium 640mg
Carbohydrates 15g
Protein 56g
Fiber 5g

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My Plan

I did WeightWatchers once before in 2004-2005. I lost 50 pounds. I gained some back going through my divorce but the good news is I kept off 20 of them until I restarted WeightWatchers in January 2009.

For the first time, I have found a plan that was easy to stick to. Something just felt right this time. Before embarking on WeightWatchers I re-read some books I had found helpful in the middle of my last journey. The books are listed under "Weight Loss" Books on the side bar, and a blog post about them will follow soon. These books helped get me mentally prepared to lose weight and they are the reason I think I am finding losing to be less of a struggle. I am not letting myself get discouraged by small gains and I am seeing far more consistent results.

WeightWatchers gives you a points target based on weight and basic daily activity level. Every food has a points value based on calories, fiber and fat. Then its like a checkbook you start with your daily balance, subtract for foods eaten and add for activity done which can earn you points. Exercise=More Food. Each food point is roughly 50 calories and each activity point is worth roughly 100, I use a heart-rate monitor to calculate my activity points earned.

You also get 35 weekly points to use as you want anytime during the week. For me the most successful both mentally and on the scale is to use most of those points on Saturday night for a splurge and to then stick to my daily points fairly closely the rest of the week. It helps me to know my favourite foods are only a week away if I want them. People can manage the plan however they want but for me this is the most successful. When I'm working out a lot I try to eat some of those activity points as well. Ironically I get much smaller losses the weeks I don't eat those points on Saturday, maybe it shakes up my metabolism, who knows I just know it works

Finally my last key to my plan is attending meetings. It helps keep me accountable and on track.

Weight Loss Slideshow