Home ยป A "Tree" Recipe and Randomness

A "Tree" Recipe and Randomness

Goooooood morning, FRIDAY! TGIF!

I want to thank you all for 1) not being Drive-Thru Dieters, 2) understanding every reason why any Drive-Thru Diet is not wise, and 3) for all your love and support of my blog. Things around here are continuing full speed ahead and I am SO EXCITED! I know everyone says it, but each of your comments brightens my day and means so much to me. Likewise, reading your blogs provides me the insight, ideas, and constant motivation to continue being the healthiest, happiest, and most helpful dietitian and blogger I can be! Mucho gracias to all!

On a completely unrelated note, I found out yesterday that my request to go to four 10-hour work days was granted, and starting February 1st I will be working Monday through Thursday from 7-5:30. Unfortunately with my commute, that’s more like 6:15 am to 6:15 pm…ahhh! My motivating factor: saving on gas money and reducing my carbon footprint just a smidge and being with my hubby on Fridays, who also works 4-10’s. I am a bit apprehensive about good work-life-exercise-blog balance on those 4 days, but overall I’m really excited.

Question: Does anyone work 4-10’s? Any other crazy schedules? Do you enjoy it?

On another completely unrelated note, I am continuing on my quest in finding DELICIOUS vegetables which are healthy and crowd-pleasers (i.e. pleasing to my husband). Last night produced yet another WINNER!

Broccoli with Cheddar Sauce

Broccoli with Cheddar Sauce
Source: Cooking Light, May 2008

1 Tbsp all-purpose flour
1 cup fat-free milk
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat extra-sharp cheddar cheese
3 Tbsp grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 1/2 pounds broccoli florets (about 9 cups)

1. Place flour in a medium sauce pan. Gradually add milk, stirring constantly with a whisk until smooth. Cook over medium-high heat 2 minutes or until mixture is bubbly and thickened, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Add cheeses, mustard, salt, pepper, and thyme, stirring with a whisk until smooth. Keep warm.

2. Add water to a large saucepan to a depth of 1 inch; set large vegetables steamer in pan. Bring water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add broccoli to steamer. Steam broccoli, covered, 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Serve broccoli immediately with sauce.

Yield: 8 servings (about 1 cup per serving)
Nutrition Information (per serving): 69 calories; 2.3 g. fat (1.4 g. saturated, 0.6 g. monounsaturated, 0.3 g. polyunsaturated), 6.2 g. protein, 7.1 g. carbohydrate, 2.5 g. fiber, 7 mg. cholesterol, 0.8 mg. iron, 204 mg. sodium, 143 mg. calcium

It was deeeeelicioso! Nom nom nom! Oh, and EASY! Lots of cheese on those trees, believe you me! This is a much CLEANER broccoli cheese sauce than say…Velveeta? 😉

Plans for the weekend include watching Food, Inc., watching the Illini beat Indiana, getting in 2 “long” runs (5 and 6 miles, I’m thinkin’) and weights, FINALLY working on my “Recipe” tab, and making kale chips…finally!

Lots of RANDOM questions…

  1. Do you have a good kale chip recipe? Do share!
  2. What college sports team do you root for? (We’re die-hard Fighting Illini fans as that’s our alma mater! GO ILLINI!)
  3. What is ONE blog you’re really diggin’ lately? (As if I need another one to love!)
  4. Any fun weekend plans? I hope more eventful than mine!

Have a fabulous weekend, Blogland! Make it a safe, warm, and healthy one!

Share With Your Friends!


  1. January 8, 2010 / 9:54 am

    gah there are so many new blogs im loving! too much to handle!!!
    this weekend-like NO plans, its so weird, maybe a bball game!
    and i go for the CLEMSON TIGERS!! whooo!!!
    have a great weekend girl!
    GREAT recipe-my boy would actually like that!

  2. January 8, 2010 / 10:18 am

    The cheese sauce looks really simple and tasty! I have some weekend plans, but most of them involve some kind of work-related thing. Oh well! haha

  3. January 8, 2010 / 10:35 am

    looks wonderful & love the cheesy look of it..

  4. eaternotarunner
    January 8, 2010 / 10:45 am

    That broccoli looks delish! When I make kale chips I just spray them with evoo, sprinkle sea salt and put them in the over for about 15 minutes on 300. Always a good plan ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. January 8, 2010 / 10:47 am

    I dunno what I would think of 4-10’s. I would have to get used to it. Nick basically works 10 hours everyday, he’s crazy. I do still manage to see him at times though, so I guess it’s not that bad. If I loved what I was doing (which I do, an dI think you do too!) it would probably be ok ๐Ÿ™‚

    This recipe is a keeper. Nick and eat broccoli all the time and I always am on the look out for new broccoli recipes. Thanks.

    I found the New York times blog about a month ago. It’s called “Well”, maybe you have seen it? It’s pretty fantastic.

    This weekend we are going to see Avitar!

  6. January 8, 2010 / 10:56 am

    Hey! I just found a bunch of comments from you in my “pending” folder which I didn’t know existed. Thank you so much and I apologize for the delay getting back to you. Happy Weekend!

  7. January 8, 2010 / 11:05 am

    I love broccoli with cheese sauce. That recipe looks fantastic!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. January 8, 2010 / 11:10 am

    Wow – that recipe looks amazing!

    I would LOVE to work 4 10’s. Though I never have, I think it’d be really nice to have one day off a week. I drive about 40 miles total to/from my job, so that one day could make a big difference!

    I hope you have a wonderful weekend! I MIGHT be going on a getaway with the girls for a friend’s birthday….waiting til the last minute to decide, per usual. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. January 8, 2010 / 11:27 am

    Thanks for the recipe! I’ve never done 4 – 10 hr days… I would have a hard I think… but that’s just cause of my lifestyle ๐Ÿ™‚

    There are tons of blogs I love… too many good ones to narrow it down ๐Ÿ™‚

  10. Stef @ moretolifethanlettuce
    January 8, 2010 / 11:30 am

    my kale chip recipe is so basic, just preheat the oven to 350-375 (it takes some playing around to figure out the best temp to make them crispy but not burnt!) remove the leaves from the stem, cut up into uniform size pieces, sprinkle with apple cider vinegar (gives em a nice tang!) and bake for ~15 mins, but check earlier than that.

    i hope you’ll find your new schedule to be an improvement from the one you have now, i think fridays off will be great for ya!

  11. January 8, 2010 / 11:34 am

    I just set up my school schedule next semester so that I have 4 day weekends! That means class all day on the days I do have class, but I think it will be worth it. I’m bookmarking that brocc. cheese recipe…I love broccoli with cheese sauce, but most original recipes defeat the purpose of eating broccoli!

  12. January 8, 2010 / 11:53 am

    I recently got my schedule to moved to 4 tens. I love it! I actually have off Wednesdays..it’s a long story. But honestly, it’s turned into my day to get stuff done around the house, work out, and run errands. The days are longer..obviously, but I think the benefits of having an extra day outweigh that.
    Great recipe! I’ll have to try it out.

  13. lessonstolearn
    January 8, 2010 / 12:22 pm

    Congrats on the new schedule! That would be my preference too. One more weekend day is always needed!

    I make kale chips with just a little bit of olive oil sprayed on it and a sprinkling of crazy-mixedup-salt. Mmmm!

  14. January 8, 2010 / 12:37 pm

    I do not work a crazy schedule, but I guess some days I work more than others between a bunch of part time things I have going on. I really work from home, but then work part time and the school has alternating days, so I have an am class one day and a after lunch class the next. It is too hard to explain. My schedule is literally different everyday, but my drive is not far. The island is only 11 x 18 miles, so it is hard to burn through gas. I fill up every 2 weeks about.

  15. January 8, 2010 / 12:39 pm

    That broccoli sounds great! I’d love to have Fridays off but I don’t see my work going for 4-10’s. I hope you love the new schedule!

  16. January 8, 2010 / 1:04 pm

    Mmm…that looks very yummy. I really want to try kale chips, but haven’t yet! That’s my goal for next week ๐Ÿ™‚

  17. January 8, 2010 / 1:32 pm

    Great post. Anything covered in sauce is a winner in my book…I have a crazy ridiculous borderline unhealthy obsession with spaghetti sauce …:(…hmmm – I love all blogs and don’t have enough time as is to comment on all of them – but am always reading girl ๐Ÿ™‚ – uh besides yours! – kbwood’s is always positive ๐Ÿ™‚ Cheers.

  18. intheskinny
    January 8, 2010 / 1:34 pm

    Oooh, that would be nice to work 4 days a week. I think as long as I could still get my workouts out in the morning done I would like it. By with teaching I don’t think it’s going to be an option anytime soon. At least I get 2 months off in the summer.

    I can’t wait to try the broccoli recipe!

    My new blog that I just found & love is http://www.lesleyliftinglife.com/

  19. January 8, 2010 / 2:56 pm

    I would love to work 4 10’s. Instead I find myself working 5 12’s… Hmm! Will have to work on that one.

    I recommend http://www.jennsylvania.com for some good humor!

    Trying to stay warm and relaxed this weekend.

  20. January 8, 2010 / 3:16 pm

    WOW I would love to work 4 days a week! that would be so nice (a girl can dream). The closest thing I have to that bliss is that I get to leave work at 4 instead of 5 =). I gave up my lunch break lol.

    I recently started to make Kale Chips and I just coat them in EVOO, Salt, and maybe some Garlic. Throw them in the oven at 400 for about 15 minutes.

  21. January 8, 2010 / 3:34 pm

    You can put the leftover broccoli cheese on baked potatoes! I started to comment on your Taco Bell post – but my computer crashed and I didn’t feel like starting it up again! ๐Ÿ˜€

    In any event, I’ve done Weight Watchers where people have eaten all their points in Snicker’s but still said “I am in my points range!” Just because you ate 1200 calories of Snicker’s does not make you a healthy person.

    I have project organization going on tomorrow – with all the groceries we bought over the holidays, I have MORE than enough food to get us through the week – now its just a contest with myself to see if I can make a meal plan out of it! ๐Ÿ˜€

    Happy Friday Nicole!

  22. January 8, 2010 / 3:45 pm

    awesome!! I love all the healthy and fabulous recipes you have!! Crazy work schedules oooohhhh yeah=) an easy week is 40 hours but ive worked from 8am-3am the next morning and repeated it for awhile. 7 day weeks are also the norm! ha! It keeps it interesting.
    I totally love UT!!! Go Texas (even though they jsut lost to Alabama..) My weekend should be nice! Im hoping it’ll be warm enough for a bike ride on the beach! Take care sweetie.

  23. January 8, 2010 / 4:47 pm

    The recipe sounds great.

    I hope you’ll enjoy your new schedule. My teaching schedule changes every few months, but I really like it when I have Fridays “off” (still have lots of work to do, but I can do it from home).

    Happy Weekend! ๐Ÿ™‚

  24. January 8, 2010 / 6:37 pm

    I love the recipe. Husband hate having broccoli without cheese.

  25. January 8, 2010 / 7:22 pm

    Great job on getting the 10 hour schedule! I hope you love it!

  26. January 8, 2010 / 7:42 pm

    I work crazy schedules! i’m in the news industry so I work every holiday (for the most part) including Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s Day, etc. I also work every Fri-Sun which sucks. The worst shift I’ve ever had was 10pm-6am. I had to sleep from 8am to 4 or 5 pm and I never got used to it.

  27. January 8, 2010 / 7:53 pm

    Great recipe for cheese sauce…I’ve always got broccoli in the fridge so I’ll be putting this recipe to use later this week! Congrats on your 4-10s! I’m going sledding this weekend with my 6 year old niece! ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. January 8, 2010 / 8:14 pm

    Oooh congrats on getting the new great work schedule!

  29. January 8, 2010 / 10:34 pm

    Congrats on getting the work week you wanted! I think as long as you plan out your schedule somewhat beforehand you’ll be able to work in all the things you want to do.

    Love that broccoli cheese sauce recipe. That used to be the only way I ate broccoli as a kid but now I love the stuff!

  30. January 8, 2010 / 11:15 pm

    Oh, I love broccoli (it’s my very favorite veggie!), and this looks so yummy with the cheese sauce! I almost always put broccoli and my mac&cheese ๐Ÿ™‚

  31. January 9, 2010 / 12:31 am

    I love kale chips – I just wash it, toss it with evoo a wee bit of salt, and nutritional yeast… pop in the oven until crispy… volia! So good, so easy!!

    I love YOUR blog.. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I don’t want to get you addicted to anymore..
    One of my all time favorites is girlonraw.com she’s awesome!

    This weekend we have no huge plans, maybe dinner (sushi) and drinks with friends tomorrow!!

    Ciao pretty lady have a great night!


  32. January 18, 2010 / 12:45 pm

    I wonder if that cheese sauce would get my husband to eat broccoli?!?

    I am a Georgia Bulldogs fan – I got my master’s degree from UGA and love a good football game!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Get my newest recipes
Follow Me