Happy V. Day, Old Stoppin Grounds and BSI – Lemon Zest!

Hope you filled your coffee cup up – although this post will mostly be pictures!  First picture – I woke up to these!

yellow roses are my FAVORITE! Thanks Tony - I love you! 😀

So I had planned to have lunch with my Mom yesterday – but she has so much going on – it always happens to her like that – tons of stuff one week then the next week quiet!  She had the food pantry, working at the Economy Shop, setting up and attending a memorial service AND she was part of a fundraising team at The Nineteenth Century Women’s Club party last night – the theme was Mardi Gras!

I am tired just writing about her day yesterday – so we post-poned our lunch until next week.  Since I had leftover pizza dough, it was only natural to have my breakfast pizza!  Although since I only used 3 ounces of dough and rolled it kind of thin, my egg didn’t get cooked all the way through (so I gave that part to my dog!) but I knew Sophia and Brandi would appreciate the picture!

3 oz. dough, 1/4 cup pizza sauce, spinach, turkey pepperoni, 1 ounce of cheese and 1 egg

468 calories (well, less about 70 since I gave the egg to the dog!)

So Hannah tried to get her passport a week ago, but since she is still 17 (not for much longer!) a parent had to be present.   So we were all set to go one day last week, but we couldn’t find her birth certificate!  So I went online and ordered two more – only to have Hannah find her copy the next day!  Oh well, at least we have extras!  So we went to the post office only to find this:

Hannah was not a happy camper!

And when I take tomorrow off, the post office will be closed for President’s Day, so we’ll have to try again later in the week.  She isn’t going to Germany until June, so we have time, but she REALLY wants to cross “get passport” off of her to-do list! 😀

So Tony and I had an unplanned day together – so we decided to drive to his old stomping grounds in Schaumburg.   We went to this place for lunch:

Have you been there before Mara?  They are known for two things:

giant chicken fingers

And what we split:


No. we didn’t finish it between us, but these were the best nachos!  Each layer added something to the party: cheese, chili, sour cream, guacamole – and I may have eaten all but a few this cup of jalapenos:

The perfect bite – my guess was I ate about 580 calories at lunch:

So this bar has thousands of pictures of golf outings over the years and Tony just so happens to be in a few of them!  This picture is circa 1996 – Tony is the one on the right with the cigarette and hot ray bans!

Then we drove around, picked up some groceries – the sunset was really pretty!

So when we got home it was time to put together my BSI recipe – Tony picked me up some more celery root, after I misplaced 2 pounds of them from last week – I’ll probably find them in a couple months 😀

Celery Root and Potato Soup by Biz


1 teaspoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 pound celery root
1 pound potatoes
6 cups chicken broth
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 cup fat free half and half


  1. Heat oil in large dutch oven. Add garlic and cook for a couple minutes. Add celery salt, paprika and pepper and cook an additional minute.
  2. Pour 1/2 cup of the chicken broth, turn the heat up slightly and scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  3. Add the remaining chicken broth, the peeled and diced celery root and potatoes, bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer.
  4. Stir occassionally, simmering until vegerables are very soft.
  5. Using a stick blender, blend until smooth. Remove from heat and add 1/2 cup fat free half and half and lemon zest.
  6. Feel free to serve with chopped cooked bacon on top, which is not included in the calorie info.

it's my first time using celery root!

I thought I could use a peeler to get the tough skin off, but I ended up using a knife.

I loved the celery salt in this - I thought it would match up with the celery root and it did - and 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper gives it just the right amount of heat

letting the spices cook for a minute really adds a lot more flavor

it took about 40 minutes for the potato and celery root to get tender - then a stick blender made it nice and creamy

In one of my many magazines I read about something called a gremolata – which is traditionally made with chopped garlic, parsley, hazelnuts and lemon peel.  I decided to make my own version to top my soup:  cilantro, lemon peel and toasted pecans:

I just chopped everything up really fine

Best part?  The nutrition! This made just under 12 cups, so for six servings at 1 3/4 cups is (without garnish):

145 calories, 2.5 fat, 22.4 carbs, 3.3 fiber and 7.4 protein.  It is also low in saturated fat, no cholesterol, high in manganese, high in niacin, high in phosphorus, high in potassium, high in vitamin B6 AND very high in vitamin C!

I have to say I think this is my favorite soup I’ve come up with so far – the slight spice from the crushed red pepper, the mild celery flavor and the brightness of the lemon zest not only in the soup, but in the garnish works amazingly well together.   This one is a keeper!

So earlier in the week I wanted to make short ribs so I could use the leftovers to make this grilled cheese sandwich which was on the cover of January’s Bon Appetit magazine:

But the night I was going to make them, I pulled them out and they had already gone bad – I should have made them the day I bought them, so last week Tony brought home these:

I just seared both sides, put 3/4 cup of water in a shallow pan, put a lid on and cooked them for 1 1/2 hours at 300 degrees.  I only seasoned with salt and pepper.  So while these were thin and I thought would be meatier, after cooking you can see that some pieces had a lot of fat – let’s just say the dog enjoyed his dinner last night! 😀

So after picking off all the bones and fat, I really only ended up with about 6 ounces of meat – which was perfect for my sammies!   I started out with sourdough bread from Panera:

My sammie had:  3.5 ounces of bread, 1/2 cup baby spinach, 1.5 ounces of provolone cheese, 3 ounces of rib meat and 1 pat of butter.

So this cured my jones for that grilled cheese – the meat was so tender, the cheese oh so melty.   Um, it may not be surprising, but my stats for yesterday gave me a C+ – I guess that happens when 49% of your calories came from fat!

Plans for today:

  • walk the dog
  • bake bread!
  • clean the bathroom and kitchen
  • snuggle with Tony!
  • surf and turf for dinner 😀

Happy Valentine’s Day!   Still have today and tomorrow to enter my giveaway – I am loving all the song suggestions – I have $35 in iTunes gift cards and I am going to have a kick ass workout play list – thank you!

24 thoughts on “Happy V. Day, Old Stoppin Grounds and BSI – Lemon Zest!

  1. That sammie looks so good. I may just have to finally eat some beef. I haven’t had any yet this year.

  2. Happy Vday love!!!!

    Those nachos look so delish!

  3. What a fun day! I’m so sorty about the passport situation – how frustrating! That grilled cheese looks so fabulous and fancy – wow!

    Just ate your Buffalo Chicken Chili – AMAZING – i’ll be posting about it tomorrow – it’s going to be a staple recipe here!!!

  4. Happy Valentine’s Day!!! I love your idea of a breakfast pizza, look delish! And the short rib sandwich has me salivating!

  5. I don’t know about misplacing the celery root – you probably just thought it was trash and threw it away…what a weird-looking food item! However, the soup sounds fabulous and the gremolata looks so refreshing – never heard of that, so thanks for showing it!

    Enjoy your Valentine’s day with you sweetie!

    P.S. I love yellow roses, too!

  6. Happy Valentine’s Day!! 🙂 My mom’s favorite roses are yellow too!! 🙂

    Your soup looks wonderful as does the grilled cheese!! 🙂

  7. I have NOT been there yet, but I’m adding it to my list!!! Happy Valentine’s Day!

  8. What a lovely soup – it looks so flavorful and comforting! Happy Valentine’s Day!

  9. Happy Valentine’s Day!! 🙂

    Wow, everything looks so yummy! breakfast pizza is an awesome idea, love it. Those nachos look sooo good, too. And the soup and the sandwich LOL. YUM


  10. Sorry about the passport fiasco! However, those nachos…dear God, I think I’m drooling on my keyboard!

  11. I used to eat a lot of beef short ribs growing up. I am half Korean, so they were like a staple protein item growing up. I am sure they helped “shape” who I am today. lol…

    Now I know everything is good in moderation and you have shown that here.

  12. What gorgeous flowers!! Yellow roses are so pretty (my ultimate favorite is peach)! Sorry about the passport – that stinks 😦

    The breakfast pizza?! That looks amazing! Thanks for the soup recipe, it sounds delicious! Hope you guys have a great evening!

  13. Happy Valentine’s Day! The yellow rose is so pretty. My favorite is purple.

    I have a giveaway going on my blog in case you or any of your readers are interested.

    Have a great week!

  14. lol A C+. Well, some days are better than others. 🙂

  15. All the food… I’m literally drooling over here!

    Hope you had a great Valentine’s Day, I spent the day making cupcakes that you would be proud of!

  16. C plus is still pretty good… but so much fun…

    And don’t you love the post office

  17. Lots of fun photos! I’m not very familiar with celery root but will have to give it a try. Thank you for stopping by my blog! Happy Valentine’s Day ~LeslieMichele

  18. oh, that egg-ish pizza! I’m a pizza freak. never seen anything like this. my heart is racing and my breathing is rapid. I obviously need to have one of these pizzas immediately.

  19. That soup looks like it would hit the spot, yummy !!! 🙂

  20. That picture is HILARIOUS!!! The one of the golf outing, with Tony and his cigarette, classic.

    I love that you put an egg on top of your pizza, that is something I have never done before. I plan to make a wheat free pizza this week and I may just have to try that! Nick won’t like it though, he hates uncooked yolks (weirdo).

    I understand Hannah wanting to cross off “passport” from her list. I’m the SAME WAY. I hope she gets it done sooner than later!

    Have a nice day 🙂

  21. COOL I’d never seen celery root before! And mmmm runny egg yolk. I had two of those today 😀

    I hope that all goes well with the passport *hugs to Hannah*.

  22. Happy Belated Valentine’s Day! Matthew would love that pizza…he adores egg on his pizzas. I have to admit that I think it’s a bit odd…but whatever floats your boat! 😉

  23. That soup looks fantastic! Ugh we need to get all of our passports too, what a pain. Wow Germany huh? Nice place;-)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s