Date: 22 August 2018. Book of Labels
(refried beans recipe)
As described in the
A Day of Reckoning (the diet)
article, I've been on a getting healthier kick. Part of that is
tracking what I eat. I want easy access to the nutrition information
found on the labels of my food stuffs. Here is how I accomplished
that for just a dollar.
At the Dollar Tree store I found a 4" x 6" photo
album. I call it my Book of Labels.
This item tucks away easily in my bookcase. I remove
food labels, cutting out the
nutrition information. Next I insert them in the clear pockets of
the photo album.
I have been growing sprouts aboard Seaweed. Before
learning how to do the broccoli
I would refer to the Book of Labels for said information. It's easy, and
therefore I use it.
Don't think I only eat healthy
foods. I also have information on the treats too:
Candy Corn and Autumn Mix by Brach's are particular
favorites. So too is the Aldi brand of soup crackers.
Lately however Aldi stopped stocking the soup crackers. I should
have bought more. They really are good.
I also enjoy Aldi's Never Any
When Edwin came to visit he and I shared many chicken
sausage tortilla wraps.
This is Edwin:
Because of my health kick I have
been trying to eat better.
Cans of refried beans have become an item on my grocery shopping
list. Of course I could make them myself for less money however the
cans are easy. Frankly, easy has become an important criteria for me
I would rather
spend my time on enjoyable aspects of life
rather than the mundane. Thus, I look for convenience items.
To prepare dried beans requires
first soaking overnight, then boiling. Hours of simmering over
medium heat later, the beans must then be drained. Next comes
mashing the beans.
All this is labor intensive. It also
a lot of power, be it propane or electricity.
Opening a can is a better alternative for me. I do understand the
back-to-nature folks, and those who do all cooking from scratch.
I've been there myself. At present however I am splurging with more
prepared food items.
Foodstuffs do need to be
healthy. Recently I began buying refried beans. They are an
economical addition to meals. Refried beans come in two
varieties. Traditional and Fat Free. One would think that Fat
Free would be the healthier version.
Traditional Refried Beans by
has lower sodium than the Low Fat version.
At Walmart, the Great Value
brand had even lower sodium so I bought it.
I am not certain my choice makes any real difference.
I am after the taste and
health benefits. Frankly I cannot tell the difference between
low fat and regular.
Each can of refried beans costs about 75 cents. I get three
servings per can, so it's a good choice
for budget conscience folks like me.
such as broccoli, cauliflower and zucchini are my preference.
Refried beans are an alternative choice when I have run out of
My friend Tom spreads refried beans on toast. For me that is
too bland. I prefer beans in combination with other flavors. For texture I will sometimes add a chopped Roma tomato to
my dish. When I do not have any fresh tomatoes on hand, I open a can
of Diced Tomatoes.
I removed the label from my can of tomatoes and added
it to the Book of Labels.
Having the nutrition information in a handy
format assists me in making good food choices.
This is my 700 watt microwave
↓ oven, made by Rival.
Securing the Microwave
describes how I mounted the unit on an open counter.
First of all, I love my 700 watt microwave. It is
convenient. Now that I have one I cannot imagine life without it. I
am fully aware that lots of boaters do not have the power generating
abilities I have now. Neither did I, until last summer!
It took me nearly nine years to have
this level of decadence.
Life is wonderful aboard Seaweed.
Now I am blessed. I have a reefer that runs 24/7 keeping items cold.
That has opened a whole new world for me. Having ice for my tea is
wonderful. Additionally with plenty of batteries I can use my
microwave. Except for the air-conditioner that must run on shore
power or a generator, my life is exactly the same at anchor.
Actually it is
better at anchor. There I am in my own world. I don't have to listen
to the guy next door berating his wife, nor the other side where
LOUD music is played every Friday and Saturday night. Of course
those things happen at anchor too.
When the din
exceeds my tolerance, I move to a new place.
Probably the worst place to be
anchored is near a karaoke bar late at night.
Then the sun rises and life is again great. Photo
↑ taken by Irene.
That said, I am fortunate to have
been able to share a dock this summer. Having the Haier 5000btu
air-conditioner running has been wonderful. A gal could definitely
get used to the cooler temperatures offered by a Haier a/c unit.
Slaving over a hot burner has gone
by the wayside. I find myself doing minimal cooking, preferring cold
items from the reefer. When I am in the mood for something more
substantial the microwave does my cooking/reheating.
Hot from the microwave in a few
The other day I wanted something
that was easy, filling and could be made without effort. The
1/3rd can of Refried
2T diced tomatoes from
One jalapeno turkey
smoked sausage, sliced. A hotdog is fine. I prefer spicy
First heat the refried
beans in a bowl. That takes about
1½ minutes. Then add the
tomatoes and nuke for 30 seconds more. Finally add the hotdog
around the edge. Heat for one minute more.
It's ready, except for
adding the fresh scallions.
When cooking items in a microwave, pile the food along the
perimeter of your container. It will heat more evenly.
This refried beans conglomeration takes me less than five minutes to put together. Sometimes
that's about as long as I wish to spend on meal preparations. The
best part is that clean-up is a breeze. More on that tomorrow.
Thank you for reading.
I'd love to hear what criteria you use when fixing a
Do you have something that is particularly easy to put together?
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