Sunday, January 26, 2014

A Bleak Week

In terms of jobs, anyway.

This week, we've had calls from agents and we've bid on loads, but none were booked with us. On Wednesday, we drove from San Antonio to Dallas to better position ourselves for a load - or so we thought. Texas is crammed with expedite trucks right now, all vying to get back into busier freight lanes. All carriers seem to be affected. And this is the slowest freight time of the year, to boot. We called a mentor or two and all agree that we're doing all we should be doing to market ourselves and attract loads - there just aren't enough at a decent rate to go around right now.

Fortunately, we have few bills and savings that will tide us over. And frankly, if we've got to be stuck somewhere in a slump, I'm glad we're in warmish Texas instead of smack dab in that polar vortex nonsense. Our Adventure in Omaha three weeks ago was enough winter for me this year.

So what have we been doing? Well, obviously not blogging.

We have renewed our quest for smarter and healthier food choices, and I've used this week's spare time to play with a few recipes. We're back on breakfast egg bowls again. They're easy to make, a fast cook, low in calories, and the varieties are endless (Greek: fresh spinach, grape tomatoes, black olives, feta; Pizza: turkey pepperoni, low-fat mozzarella, pizza sauce; Denver: lean ham, low-fat cheddar, diced onions and peppers). I've also been perfecting a very satisfying, spicy Thai-inspired chicken & veggie soup - start with fresh veggies that appeal to you, add light coconut milk to the soup base and ramp up the heat with some jalapenos. Here's my first version to get you started:

2 raw chicken breasts, diced
1 T. soy sauce
Juice of 1 key lime (or 1/2 regular lime)

1 T. olive oil
1 1/2 T. chopped garlic

1 head cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/2 lb baby bellas, chopped
5 oz matchstick carrots

1 can light coconut milk
1 cup 1% milk

2 jalepenos, diced

Marinate chicken in soy and lime for about an hour. Saute chicken in olive oil with garlic until just pink. Add 1/2 cup of water and cauliflower, cover and steam until cauliflower is al dente. Add remaining ingredients, simmer until carrots are tender.

This recipe makes about 8 cups of soup.

For the second batch, I added 3/4 pound of fresh green beans, a can of black beans, and I doubled the jalapenos. Both batches were delicious.

On a related note, we've discovered jicama. That stuff is delicious - crispy/crunchy, slightly sweet, and it's a perfect dipper for low-cal Greek Yogurt Dips.

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