Sunday, January 29, 2012

Restaurant Quality! Don't miss this one!

Another awesome recipe from

Spicy Peanut-Shrimp Soup

Yield: Serves 4

4 cups low-sodium chicken stock
2 cloves garlic, sliced
2 small red chiles, sliced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1/4 cup natural peanut butter
1 pound medium shrimp, cleaned, tail on
2 cups baby spinach
1 scallion, thinly sliced

1.In a medium saucepan, simmer stock, garlic, chiles, ginger, and fish sauce for 10 minutes.

2.Whisk in peanut butter. Add shrimp and cook until opaque, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.

3.To serve, fill bowls with baby spinach. Ladle soup over spinach and garnish with scallion.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

A bowl of Awesome!

My daughter gave me the book "The Modern Vegetarian" for Christmas. This recipe from the book is outstanding. I found myself in a cooking mood this afternoon after a morning trip to Trading Blows and Wholey Cow!

This picture does not do this dish justice
 Thanks daughter...
Thai-Style Root Vegetable Casserole

Serves 4 (are you kidding me, more like 6-8)

2 sweet potatoes
1 butternut squash
2 carrots
1 onion, peeled and chopped
2 parsnips
1 small turnip
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped (of course I used more)
¼ cup fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
1 can (14oz) hot unsweetened coconut milk
1 cup hot vegetable stock
3 tablespoons soy sauce
salt and pepper
a small bunch of cilantro(if desired)

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Peel and cut the sweet potato, squash , carrots, parsnips and turnips into 1 inch cubes. Heat a dash of oil in a large frying pan over medium heat and add the sweet potato and squash. Cook until coloured, then transfer to a oven proof lidded casserole. Reheat the pan, adding a little more oil, and cook the onion and carrots. Cook until golden then add to the sweet potato.

Repeat with the parsnips and turnips and, once golden, stir in the garlic, ginger, and chili and cook for a further minute. Transfer to the casserole dish and pour in the hot coconut milk, hot vegetable stock and soy sauce. Place in the oven and cook for 35-40 minutes. Remove from the oven, adjust the seasoning and stir in the cilantro if desired. Serve in a bowl and enjoy!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Is this Real???

A Happy Meal after 180 Days

I Have to try this for myself!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

9 Days to go ... Make this before Feb 1!!!



  • Preheat oven to 425°F. Chop enough fennel fronds to measure 1/2 cup. Trim fennel bulbs and cut in half vertically. Cut each bulb half into 1/2-inch-wide wedges, leaving some core attached to each wedge.
  • Heat oil in large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat until very hot, about 3 minutes. Add fennel wedges in single layer; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon coarse salt. Cook until fennel begins to brown and soften, turning occasionally, 10 to 12 minutes. Add tomatoes, oregano, garlic, and crushed red pepper; sprinkle with 1 teaspoon coarse salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Fold together gently.
  • Transfer skillet to oven. Bake fennel and tomatoes until soft, stirring occasionally, about 30 minutes. Mix in beans and 6 tablespoons chopped fennel fronds. Bake 5 minutes longer to heat through. Transfer mixture to large shallow bowl. Sprinkle with remaining chopped fronds. Serve warm or at room temperature.

    This recipe courtesy of Bon Appetit.

Are you ready for some football?

Edamame Guacamole
1 cup frozen shelled edamame, thawed

1 ripe avocado, peeled and pitted
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 onion, roughly chopped
1/2 jalepeno, finely chopped
Juice of 2 limes
2 to 3 tablespoons water
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Put edamame, avocado, cilantro, garlic, onion, jalapeno, and lime juice in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined. Add enough water to make a creamy consistency and pulse again. Pulse until smooth. Transfer edamame guacamole to a serving bowl and season with salt and pepper. Stir. Serve with chips or vegetables.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Pineapple and Rosemary Detox Tonic

Try it, you'll like it ..Yum!

1 cup pineapple, frozen
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, finely chopped (~1 medium sprig)
1/4 cup raw cashews
1/2 cup almond milk
1 cup water

Combine the ingredients above into a powerful blender until smooth and creamy. Thin with water or thicken with ice if desired. Enjoy!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Hearty Tuscan White Bean Stew - Cooks Illustrated

  • Table salt
  • 1pound dried cannellini beans (about 2 cups), rinsed and picked over
  • 1tablespoon extra virgin olive oil , plus extra for drizzling
  • 6ounces pancetta , cut into 1/4-inch pieces (see note)
  • 1large onion , chopped medium (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2medium celery ribs , cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 3/4 cup)
  • 2medium carrots , peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
  • 8medium garlic cloves , peeled and crushed
  • 4cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 3cups water
  • 2bay leaves
  • 1bunch kale or collard greens (about 1 pound), stems trimmed and leaves chopped into 1-inch pieces (about 8 cups loosely packed)
  • 1(14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes , drained and rinsed
  • 1sprig fresh rosemary
  • Ground black pepper
  • 8slices country white bread , each 1 1/4 inches thick, broiled until golden brown on both sides and rubbed with garlic clove (optional)


  1. 1. Dissolve 3 tablespoons salt in 4 quarts cold water in large bowl or container. Add beans and soak at room temperature for at least 8 hours and up to 24 hours. Drain and rinse well.

  2. 2. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 250 degrees. Heat oil and pancetta in large Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pancetta is lightly browned and fat has rendered, 6 to 10 minutes. Add onion, celery, and carrots. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened and lightly browned, 10 to 16 minutes. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in broth, water, bay leaves, and soaked beans. Increase heat to high and bring to simmer. Cover pot, transfer to oven, and cook until beans are almost tender (very center of beans will still be firm), 45 minutes to 1 hour.

  3. 3. Remove pot from oven and stir in greens and tomatoes. Return pot to oven and continue to cook until beans and greens are fully tender, 30 to 40 minutes longer.

  4. 4. Remove pot from oven and submerge rosemary sprig in stew. Cover and let stand 15 minutes. Discard bay leaves and rosemary sprig and season stew with salt and pepper to taste. If desired, use back of spoon to press some beans against side of pot to thicken stew. Serve over toasted bread, if desired, and drizzle with olive oil.

    Make this recipe without the Pancetta and use vegetable stock!!!!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

The JWE welcomes Paula Deen with open arms!

Forget the drugs and butter Paula! Join the Joel Whalen Experience!!

Excerpts from the Associated Press report regarding Paula Deen’s announcement that she has Type 2 diabetes.

NEW YORK (AP) — Paula Deen, the Southern belle of butter and heavy cream, makes no apologies for waiting three years to disclose she has diabetes while continuing to dish up deep-fried cheesecake and other high-calorie, high-fat recipes on TV.

She said she isn't changing the comfort cooking that made her a star, though it isn't clear how much of it she'll continue to eat while she promotes health-conscious recipes along with a diabetes drug she's endorsing for a Danish company…….

….Health activists and one fellow chef called her a hypocrite for promoting an unhealthy diet along with a drug to treat its likely effects. Deen added her support of the Novo Nordisk company to a collection of lucrative endorsements that include Smithfield ham and Philadelphia Cream Cheese.

Deen, who will turn 65 on Thursday, said she kept her diagnosis private as she and her family figured out what to do, presumably about her health and a career built solidly on Southern cooking. Among her recipes: deep-fried cheesecake covered in chocolate and powdered sugar, and a quiche that calls for a pound of bacon….

.... Some health experts question the delay between the time Deen was diagnosed with diabetes and her move three years later to promote a healthier way of cooking and living.

"A more responsible approach would have been that once she was diagnosed with diabetes to really emphasize to her viewers the importance of eating a healthy diet," said Michael Jacobson, executive director of the Center for Science in the Public Interest

Monday, January 16, 2012

Minty Pea Dip


Makes 2 cups Serves 4 

3 cups frozen green peas
1/4 cup fresh mint leaves
Zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for drizzling
1 tablespoons tahini
Coarse salt and pepper

1.Cook peas in salted boiling water until tender, 1 minute. Transfer to an ice-water bath; drain.
2.Pulse peas in a food processor with mint, lemon zest and juice, garlic, 2 tablespoons olive oil, and tahini.
3.Season with salt and pepper; drizzle with oil.

Week three weigh in

I stayed the same at 118. Eating pretty well but I guess too much. I will cut down amounts....and I confess....I scoffed some waffle fries from the kids last night. Dumb move on a Sunday night. Matt is over the pond, minding the gap...stay strong Matty!

Anyone still in or are we down to Skip, Matt and I...haven't heard from anyone lately. They say New Year's resolutions go away in two to three weeks. Consider this...

1. Read the Book, "the China Study". If that doesn't make you want to change your ways, nothing probably will.

2. I took my kids to the Pine Street Inn in Boston (homeless shelter) to make sandwiches and serve a hot brunch. I was stationed over a mixture of overcooked peas and carrots, pancakes and a minestrone soup. Jillian manned the chicken and a meat that we needed to ask what it was was ham. As I asked if they wanted peas and carrots, one woman smiled and said, "yes, you gotta eat your veggies". As a homeless person, she had no other options. WE have options. WE can say no to processed and yes to yummy stuff....skip is even giving us the recipes!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Avocado with Bell Pepper and Tomatoes

1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil

Juice of 1/2 lime
1 small clove garlic, minced
Pinch cayenne
Coarse salt
1 ripe avocado, halved and seeded
1/2 yellow bell pepper, stem and seeds removed, diced
6 cherry tomatoes, halved
1 scallion, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon freshly chopped cilantro, plus leaves for garnish


1.In a small bowl, whisk together oil, lime juice, garlic, and cayenne. Season with salt.

2.Scoop out meat from avocado halves and chop. Transfer to a bowl and add bell pepper, tomatoes, scallion, and cilantro.

3.Drizzle with dressing and season with salt. Gently stir to combine. Spoon mixture into avocado shells. Garnish with cilantro leaves.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Kale Slaw with Red Cabbage and Carrots


• 1 tablespoon olive oil

• 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

• 1 teaspoon apple-cider vinegar

• Coarse salt and pepper

• 3 cups mixed shredded kale and red cabbage

• 1 carrot, peeled and julienned

• 1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves

• 2 tablespoons diced red onion

• 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds

• 2 tablespoons pumpkin seeds

• 2 tablespoons hemp seeds


1. In a small bowl, whisk olive oil, mustard, and apple-cider vinegar. Season with salt and pepper.

2. In another bowl, combine kale, cabbage, carrot, parsley, and red onion with sunflower, pumpkin, and hemp seeds.

3. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle with dressing, and toss to coat.

Yield Serves 4

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Seafood Anyone?

I sense a drop in energy

I haven't heard from Sean

Gwynn is just getting his tech on...

Kim, Matt, and Bill have kept it up...


It's dark every morning,
dark when I drive home..

Heck..we don't even have snow...

Let's keep the winter Blahs at bay.

Let's make some noise..we need feedback, energy, something...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Week One

I'm down by 1 pound to 185. I've knocked coffee down by a lot, using the tea substitute trick. It works well. I also cut back on the sweets but have not gone cold turkey. I stopped eating those little bite size chocolates that haunt my office. They are like drinking beers from a shot glass. It's tough to keep track of how many you've had until it's too late. Altogether, I made some progress but admitedly have to do more to truly live the JWE.

Weigh in Week 1

It's time to weigh in, you know the drill:
1. Go to the blog
2. Comment on this post
3. Post you weight
4. Get back to the Joel Whalen Experience

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Another day, Another recipe

Folks, we are officially winding down day #8 and overall I feel great. Not sure if thats because I played my 1st 18 holes in the Seattle area today or what but so be it. I am prepping for the week and really trying to plan a couple days out in advance from pre cooking steel cut oats to bagging veggies to bring to work. Angie made this meal the other day and we good and worth trying. Check it out.

Sauteed Greens and Butter Beans with Lemon Quinoa

PRINT Recipe


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 bunch of Kale, stems removed
  • 1 15-ounce can butter [Gigante] beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 cup Kalamata olives, pitted and halved
  • Optional: 1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
Lemon Quinoa
  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest


In a small saucepan, add quinoa, 1 1/2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cover for 16-18 minutes or until all the water is absorbed. Remove from the heat and fluff with a fork. Add olive oil, lemon juice and lemon zest. Cover to keep warm; set aside.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and stir until it’s fragrant, about 1 minute. Add greens and stir until they begin to wilt – use tongs to coat with oil. Add butter beans and cook until they get a little crispy, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, add kalamata olives, season with salt and pepper.

When ready to serve, dish quinoa and top with the greens and bean mixture. Sprinkle crushed red pepper if you prefer some spice.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

A Performance Breakfast

Thanks Kim for this Post!


1) Put 1 cup water into microwavable bowl and nuke for 2 mins **CAUTION** the bowl will be hot and the water should be steaming when you remove the bowl so be careful –note: the purpose of heating the water first is that the microwave actually destroys the nutritional content of food, but that is another topic for another day

2) Upon removing the bowl from the microwave, add 1 cup of old fashioned rolled oats (oatmeal) to the water –note: if you are looking to lose some weight try ½ cup water and ½ cup oats to start

3) Add 1 scoop of protein to bowl and mix thoroughly

4) Add ½ cup berries, cinnamon to taste, nutmeg to taste, honey to taste and mix in thoroughly

5) Enjoy your Super Performance Oatmeal with a glass of milk or a tbspn of peanutbutter for some extra protein and healthy fat

The nutritional breakdown is as follows and is approximately what you will get with the ½ cup portion (add another 150 calories, 3 g Fat, 27 g Carbs, 4 g Fiber and 5 g Protein for another ½ cup of oats)

Calories: 550 Fat: 9.2 g Carbs: 85 g Fiber: 7.2 Protein: 37 g

SOURCE: Momentum Performance Training

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Day Five: Preparation is Key

I struggled through Day Four yesterday. I was successful, but was ill-prepared. Today I start the day with a bag full of veggies, fruits, soup, etc..It is much easier to have what you need at hand. I find the days I travel most difficult.  Bill shared a thought, rather than fall prey to fast food, make a stop at a grocery store and buy a bag of carrots, fruit, etc...Just a thought...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Here is a place to avoid if you live north of the border, a couple places in Maine or if you are with the infamous Papa G. Although this is a great fix prior to hitting the Elk river in Fernie, its not a recommended addition to the JWE circuit.

Skip, this should leave a mark in the am as I know the picture will conjure up sweet memories!!!

Get Out and Move!

The girls out on a Hike New Years Day!

I am guessing Joel would approve of getting out and moving in the world we live in. Hike, walk, bike, run, surf, board, ski, jump, whatever...Do it with someone else, so much the better.

I heard Joel is out snow-surfing, tree-hopping, ninja-bear cuttie hunting or something like that, AS I SPEAK!!

Ask yourself, "WWJWD?"

What have YOU done this week?

What will YOU do this week?

I want some feedback!!!!!

Here's a clue..if YOU getting out involves a drive-through, ice cream, or a six pack, you are missing the point!

PS...I am emarassed to admit it, but that rat like creature is our dog "Mikey"

Monday, January 2, 2012

Day two of the JWE. Feeling great so far. I am living Option #2 including some seafood(no, not lobster with butter) into the mix. Some fish, scallops and prawns will help with veggie fest 2012. I enjoyed some Tabbouleh that I made last night and it was awesome. Its a healthy and very flavorful salad or side dish. This is courtesy of Ina Garten. Here it is:


  • 1 cup Bulgar wheat
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (2 lemons)
  • 1/4 cup good olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup minced scallions, white and green parts (1 bunch)
  • 1 cup chopped fresh mint leaves (1 bunch)
  • 1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley (1 bunch)
  • 1 hothouse cucumber, unpeeled, seeded, and medium-diced
  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


Place the Bulgar in a large bowl, pour in the boiling water, and add the lemon juice, olive oil, and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt. Stir, then allow to stand at room temperature for about 1 hour.
Add the scallions, mint, parsley, cucumber, tomatoes, 2 teaspoons salt, and the pepper; mix well. Season, to taste, and serve or cover and refrigerate. The flavor will improve if the tabbouleh sits for a few hours.

Quick Recipe: Rice Protein Shake

I find breakfast a challenge. So one thing that works is a protein shake in the morning before heading off. I usually double or triple the recipe and freeze a few servings. That way cleanup is less and I can grab a quick shake on my way out the door. The downside is the shake takes a while to defrost.  Here is one recipe that can be modified to the protein powder of your choosing.

Rice Protein Shake

Serves 1

Prep time: 5 minutes

This satisfying shake is the easiest to make and digest.

• 2 scoops rice protein powder (or follow directions for the serving size of the product you pick)
• 1 tbsp. organic combination flax and borage oil
• 2 tbsp. ground flax seeds
• Ice, if desired
• 6–8 oz. filtered water
• ½ c. fresh or frozen non-­‐citrus organic fruit (such as cherries, blueberries, raspberries, strawberries,
peaches, pears, or bananas)
• Optional: 1 TBS peanut, almond, or cashew butter
Place all ingredients in blender and thoroughly combine.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The weigh-in and a challenge.

I'm officially tipped the scale at 186 today. The JWE looks intimidating. I don't drink alcohol and I eat fairly well thanks to a caring wife (you rock Kim!). However, I know my nutrition habits need a lot of work. Coffee and sugar are my biggest weaknesses. My goal for the JWE is to drastically curtail them from my diet (option 2, I guess.

Here's the challenge. No diet program can possibly be complete without a fitness regimen. Over the past several years, I've completely changed my workout regimen. I used to think running was the only way to burn enough calories to keep off the weight. I ran endless miles and suffered overuse injuries but never really achieved the weight goal I had in mind. The problem with running for me was that my heart rate would plateau at a level below my max VO2, which is basically the point at which your muscles can no longer get enough oxygen to keep going. Everyone has a different max VO2 level. The important point is that the amount of calories you burn rises exponentially the closer you get to your max VO2. I now focus on workouts that seek to reach my max VO2. This mainly requires intervals of some sort. I find I don't have the self discipline to do interval training while running, so running is now a much less important part of my routine (one or two days per week). I do something called TRX that is incredible at building strength while also achieving multiple max VO2 levels during a single workout. I reached my weight goal by boosting this type of workout dramatically. The beauty of it is that the workouts take much less time (30-45 minutes) and need only be done about 3 days per week. So, if you really want to get to your fighting weight, focus on max VO2. I challenge JWE participants to stick with one or more TRX programs ("Boot Camp-Ropes and Straps", "Performance-Train Like The Pros", or "Force - Military Fitness Program") for at least six months (TRX can be found on the Internet at If you master them, the weight will melt off......Buddy Lee guarantees it!!!!!! If TRX is not for you, then find an alternative. Weekly fitness log-ins have to be posted.
Skip is making me create a post....I guess emailing is just not good enough for him.

As I said in the email....
Losing a few pounds isn't enough motivation to take it the distance. You need to really know what processed food and excessive animal protein/fat does to your body. Do some research. Read my buddy Dr. Hyman's The China Study. If that doesn't wake you up to eating better, I don't honestly know what will. We need to take care of out bodies for the long haul.

All that said, everything in moderation (skip, that probably ranks right up there with "it is what it is"). Even As a vegetarian for about 25 years now, I don't think a piece of beef and some chicken now and then will mess you up. And I don't believe eggs are evil......but I'm not even close to finished with the China study so I may change my mind. I do believe dairy fat is fairly evil....but a low/zero fat Greek yogurt in moderation is far better than eating cookies as a snack.

My view is that if you simply can't live without animal protein, don't deprive yourself totally or you are going to continuously fail. It may actually help you stay on the wagon. Too much deprivation is not going to work. Get rid of the shitty food you eat (and we each know what that is for us....I hope) and all will fall into place. With sugar, the more you eat, the more you one benefits from processed sugary clean out the cabinet. And don't use the old "but I have it for the kids", they don't need it either.

And we of course need to be EXERCISING!!!!!

Keep it real and you wont feel like you need a cleansing.

Happy New Year and cheers (with a glass of water) to clean eating.

Kickin' the Caffeine

I think you should try kicking the coffee habit.
I did three months ago, and it has made a huge diffrence for me.
I still enjoy a cup of green tea once a day.

 I will warn you, it is not easy. You may feel a slight headache at times for up to ten days and feel a bit off. I reccomend gradually getting off the caffei ne by reducing your intake by 1/2 cup a day until you are off the joltin' joe. Decaf or hebal tea is a good substitute. You may find yourself craving the habit of sipping a warm cup of liquid each morning more than the coffee itself.


Time to Weigh In !

Time NOW for the pre JWE weigh in. Don't be shy. A wise man once said. "If you're not first, your'e last baby!"

Comment below!
When we get five or more weigh ins, I will post a recent picture of Joel on the river and several links to vidoes showing what is possible for anyone following the JWE. !! That is gold baby!