In January of this year, I declared it the year I was going to get in shape and lose weight. For those of you who don’t know, I lost 70 pounds in 1999-2000 and maintained that weight loss for years.
Then life happened, my husband got sick, his needs came before mine and before you know it, my old habits came back and I comforted myself with food, and I gained back 40 pounds over the last 10 years.
My birthday is in March and every day I declare on January 1st “I am going to lose 20 pounds by my birthday!” But if that didn’t happen, I would declare myself a failure and quit. And then eat like crap for a day, week or even months.
This year I knew a mind shift was needed. I decided to take the time limit off of how long it would take me to get to my goal weight, because did it really matter if it took me one or two years?
I also realized that I couldn’t treat every weekend like it was my birthday and do great Monday through Friday, only to throw it all away on the weekends eating and drinking whatever I wanted.
For me to make this mind shift, I had to make changes to ensure these were lifestyle changes and not just a diet. And it’s been an amazing six months so far. I have lost almost 22 pounds, and two pant sizes, and feel better than I have in a long time. And it feels good.
I know barbeque season is coming up and there will be lots of temptations, and one way I can control what I eat is to bring an appetizer that is not only delicious but healthy, and uses pantry ingredients so it’s really friendly on the wallet. It’s great right out of the oven and at room temperature, too.
Please make the lime salt tortillas – they are so good!
Black Bean Dip
Scroll down for a printable version of this recipe
Serves: 8 as an appetizer
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 20 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 can tomato paste
2/3 cup water
1 tablespoon taco seasoning (I used Dak’s Taco Knight)
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 can black beans, drained
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 ounce cheese (I used quesadilla cheese)
Chopped cilantro for garnish
- Preheat the oven (or grill, see note below) to 450 degrees.
- In a small oven-safe skillet, spray with avocado oil spray and add the garlic, cook on the stovetop for 3 minutes.
- Add in the taco seasoning, chili powder, salt and crushed red pepper and cook, stirring constantly for one minute. Stir in the tomato paste and cook an additional minute. Stir in the water and black beans and bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes.
- Top with cheese and cook an additional 5 minutes until melty. Garnish with chopped cilantro.
Lime Salted Tortilla Chips
10 corn tortillas, cut into quarters
Avocado oil spray
Zest of 3 limes
2 teaspoons salt
- Preheat an air fryer to 340 degrees for 5 minutes. Spray the tortillas with avocado oil spray and cook in batches so you don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket and cook for 6-8 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp – flipping once.
- Mix the lime zest and salt together and immediately salt tortilla chips when they come out of the air fryer.
Note: The black bean dip can also be made on a gas grill. Simply grill in a cast iron skillet at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Top with cheese and cook an additional 5 minutes.
Grilling classes start this weekend at Lincoln Square. Join us for a fun hands-on grilling class on our refurbished outdoor patio. We still have openings in:
- Hands-On Rendezvous Under the Stars on the Patio Friday, June 3 at 6pm
- Hands-On Pizza on the Grill Saturday, June 4 at 10am
- Hands-On Fiesta on the Grill Saturday, June 4 at 6pm
- Hands-On Brunch al Fresco Sunday, June 12 at 10am