Posts tagged ‘Texas A&M’

November 11, 2013

Vegetarian Buffalo-Style Chick’n Pizza

Can you say yum?

Can you say yum?

Morning, Friends! Brooke here. I know it’s a bit early to be discussing dinner plans, but have I got a treat for you! This one goes out to all you vegetarians out there (it’s ok . . . you non-veggies can join in too). If you want to wake up your taste buds and impress your hungry family, you’ve got to try this recipe. Or as I like to call it—a new twist on an old favorite.

Welcome to Aggieland
An Aggieland Classic
If any of you guys are a member of the Fightin’ Texas Aggies as I am (Class of ’97—WHOOP!), you will know of the greatness of Wings ‘N More, situated in the heart of Aggieland. Before I committed to a vegetarian (and much healthier) lifestyle, Wings ‘N More was a frequent stop of mine during my college years. They served chicken wings dripping in fiery Tabasco-like sauce customizable from mild to extra hot and full of garlic (yum!!), with celery and ranch or blue-cheese dressing on the side to cool the flames. And then the coup de grâce . . . razor-thin onion rings fried to a crispy golden-brown, served with tasty ketchup. I didn’t even like onion rings before then—that’s how good they were. Looking back now, my fond memories of this sweet time are tinged with horror at my eating wings and my disgust of the fried, fatty, delicious saltiness of it all. No wonder my stomach was always upset after these meals! Well, I eventually graduated and came to my senses, but that tangy, fiery sauce haunts my memories to this day.
A Healthy Reinvention
Imagine my joy when I discovered a better, blood-pressure-friendly version of that killer combination so loved long ago (in a pizza no less!). As a vegetarian, I often grow weary of the mental math of potential substitutes needed every time I find a tasty recipe that calls for meat of some kind. Really? Does everything have to include meat to be a meal? No! Thankfully, this recipe was easy for me to adapt, and even more thankfully, my non-vegetarian husband loved it. Success! Now it’s your turn . . .
Vegetarian Buffalo-Style Chick’n Pizza
• Whole-wheat pre-made pizza crust (I used Boboli®)
• 1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 Quorn® Naked Chick’n Cutlets, cooked and shredded (each cutlet is equivalent to approx. 3-4 oz. regular chicken)
• 3 stalks of celery, sliced thinly
• 2 green onions, sliced thinly
• 2 Tbsp Tabasco® or other hot sauce, and another 1 Tbsp for garnish
• 4 oz low-fat blue cheese
• Dash of dried oregano, basil, or parsley for garnish (optional)
Note: This recipe makes a pretty chunky topping. If you like fewer toppings and more crust, use 2 chick’n cutlets, 2 stalks of celery, 1 green onion, 3 oz blue cheese, and (perhaps) a bit less hot sauce—your call 😉
1. Preheat your oven to 450°F.
2. Put your pizza crust on a baking rack set on top of a cookie sheet.
3. Lightly brush the olive oil over the crust (for a golden finish and a bit of healthy fat).
4. In a medium bowl, combine the chick’n, celery, green onions, and 2 Tbsp of the Tabasco until everything is well coated.
5. Spread chick’n mixture over the pizza crust, leaving about 1 in. of crust uncovered around the edges. Pat the mixture evenly across, ensuring a balanced blend of celery and chick’n pieces. Crumble the blue cheese over the mixture, and drizzle the remaining 1 Tbsp of hot sauce over the top. Beautiful!
6. Bake for 8-10 minutes or so, checking the crust and cheese for goldening (yes, I just made that word up!).
7. Take the pizza out of the oven and sprinkle oregano, basil, and/or parsley across the top. Slice and enjoy!
I hope you enjoy this pizza as much as we did. Have a great week and gig ‘em!
XO, Brooke

gig em ags 2

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July 29, 2013

The Joy of Exercise

I choose joy

Happy Monday! It’s Brooke here. Have you ever thought about exercise as a joy? What about when you were a kid, before physical activity became Something You Had to Do? Do you remember how carefree you felt running around with the wind in your hair and the grass beneath your toes, even if your knees were skinned? Gosh, I miss that feeling!

The Good Old Days

When I was little and time stretched beyond infinity, I rejoiced in playing in the yard, swimming, and biking around my neighborhood at every opportunity. For a few preteen years, I also played soccer, mainly because I loved being with my friends on the team. But as a shy, once-timid girl, the thought of meeting a ball coming at me full throttle and me battling with another person for possession was mortifying for me. I can hear my dad (our coach)’s voice yelling “Hustle, Brooke, hustle!” to no avail. The other fly in the ointment was my being made to run a lot in the blazing Texas sun, so I’m pretty much done with running, thanks.

NoRunning

For many years, I had no perception of how important physical activity was, outside of the requisite school-mandated P.E. classes. Fortunately for those around me, I was sprung from these classes before people could truly appreciate how uncoordinated I was. In 6th grade, we were required to choose our path going forward for the next year—band, choir, or athletics. The totality of our future experience would spin out in different ways according to what we chose. Even friendships would flourish or diminish by the simple fact of sharing (or not sharing) the same physical space with a population of kids every day for the next 6 years. So, for that span of time, my exercise was no more strenuous than trying to dance/twirl or march/stand at attention as a majorette in the marching band.

Time to Play

When I arrived at college, I had to choose (again) mandatory P.E. classes. So, I decided to take all the “sports” I’d always wanted to try. I blissfully took several semesters of ballet, feeling like a graceful swan and a thrilled little girl at the same time. I even signed up for fencing—very challenging. Apparently, coordination is important there as well. But I liked the metal bra cups that the girls had to wear inside their uniform (instant curves!). Then I found archery. . .  True love!

archery target

This makes my heart skip a beat . . . look at all those 10’s!

Archery was the start of everything wonderful for me at school. I found my adored friend, Suzy, in this class. And I stumbled upon my joy when Suzy and I joined the archery team. This group became my family at A&M—that tends to happen when you see each other day in and day out for hours. Not only is archery a beautiful sport of precision and focus, but the gear is really neat too! I’ll share more shooting adventures in a future post, but my point here is that I found something that made me happy. And you should too!

Exercise is joyful when you find an activity that feels like play instead of dread. You don’t have to do 100 sit-ups or lock yourself in a gym to exercise. It’s a big world out there! If you feel confined in your life or so stressed out that you can’t breathe, go run until you forget all that stuff. Feel the need to punch something? There’s always kickboxing, karate, or MMA. Have you always wanted to try burlesque dance? Then go for it! Think of an activity involving some bodily movement that would make you feel carefree and energized. No judging, no recitals (please!), and it’s totally ok if you mess up. Just find your joy!

XO, Brooke

Joy in action!

Joy in action!

January 25, 2013

For Our New Friends . . . Hello!

Mongoose heelo

Happy Friday to our Healthy Housewives family! My name is Brooke Berryhill, and I am your go-to gal for Health and Wellness as well as Animals (specifically, Pets). I’m really excited to be a part of this group of amazing women—each of us is blazing our own trail in healthy living as we lift each other up and hopefully inspire you along the way! I’ll share a little bit of my story, and I look forward to hearing from you as well.

I’m an East Texas girl, having grown up in the beautiful Piney Woods of Longview. If you have had the good fortune to pass through Longview, you’ll appreciate how very lovely it is. I went on to Texas A&M University, where my love affair with iced coffee drinks and staying up very late really took hold. Then I was blessed to meet my husband, John, and life became even sweeter. We’ve been married for 14 years, he makes me laugh every day, and thankfully he shares my love of animals, P.F. Chang’s, and America’s Next Top Model—really, what else could you ask for in a husband?

My love

My love

I graduated with a degree in English and proceeded to spend the next 10 years as a copyeditor, providing the grammatical spit and polish to everything that I could get my hands on—science textbooks, advertising copy, medical test-prep, and romance novels (my favorite!). Then, after spending years combing the written word, I felt called to nurture people more than manuscripts and became a licensed massage therapist. And what a beautiful gift massage therapy has been for me! As a therapist, I can provide a nurturing and safe place for people to rest, to heal, and to feel more peaceful than when they walked in. I also love educating my clients on how to take better care of themselves. As the Wellness Director at a lovely retirement community, I get to do this every day as I create brand-new health and wellness programs for our staff and residents.

Pretty Lucy

Pretty Lucy

Something else that brings me (and you too, I hope) great joy are animals. I love all animals! Now, that doesn’t mean I’m going to rush out and hug a snake or anything—but I will be the one rushing past you to the nearest door as I rescue that scary spider or tiny pink gecko (by holding a well-placed cup and sturdy envelope, of course)! My love of animals is deep and abiding, and it led me to become a vegetarian many years ago. I strive to live compassionately toward people and animals, and I’m always looking for fabulous products and fashions that are created cruelty free. Now, truth be told, if I could shelter and protect all the animals in the world, I would. But since my house is not quite big enough for that, I will introduce you to my current furry family members: Lucy (snow-white, very smart, snuggly, and has lots to say);  Tiki (brown-ticked tabby, ultra affectionate, very mischievous, and wheels-off crazy); and Bit Bit (small golden-orange tabby, Tiki’s brother/partner in crime, unbelievably sweet, and cute as a bug).

Happy New Year to Tiki

Happy New Year to Tiki

Bit Bit wants more toys!

Bit Bit wants more toys!

That’s my story for now. I hope you have a wonderful weekend, and see you again next week!

Brooke