Minty fresh

For those resolution trackers out there, today was a success for me! The highlight of it all was a heart-pumping, muscle-working strength session that Dan and I did.

We both began with speedy runs on the treadmill. (Although some people’s runs were a little speedier than some other people’s. Ahem.) Then we came back together for some arm workouts with the free-weights.

I’ve found that one of the best strategies to keep me from getting distracted during strength training is to keep things fast-paced. To do this, I base my exercises off of those I do during body pump classes.

Simple Weight Circuits

  • 16 x one-pulse reps
  • 8 x two-pulse reps
  • 4 x four-pulse reps
  • 1 x eight-pulse reps

I just repeat this circuit with all of my muscle groups and end up with a good workout. Whoop-whoop!

I was also able to spend a good amount of time with great friends today. First of all, my friend Kristin came over during the afternoon, so I wanted to impress her with some good treat.

Decadent Peppermint Brownies

Traditionally, peppermint is associated with Christmas.

But that doesn’t mean the delicious flavor has to be limited to that season. In fact, I think that minty freshness pairs even better with the fresh start of a new year!

Ingredients:

Brownies:

  • 2/3 C WW flour
  • 1/3 C AP flour
  • Scant 2/3 C sugar
  • 1/4 C unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 t baking powder
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/3 C canola oil
  • 1/2 C vanilla yogurt
  • 1/4 C water
  • 2 flax eggs (or 2 eggs)
  • 1 t peppermint extract
  • 1/4 C dark chocolate and mint chips

Frosting:

  • 1 C store-bought vanilla frosting
  • 1 t peppermint extract
  • A few drops of green food coloring
  • 1 square of chocolate almond bark, chopped

Directions:

  • In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt. In a separate bowl combine the oil, yogurt, water, flax eggs and peppermint extract.
  • Mix everything together including the chocolate chips. Be careful not to over-mix.
  • Pour batter into greased 8×8 in. pan. Bake in 350 degree oven for 30 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
  • In a small bowl, combine the frosting, peppermint extract and green food coloring.
  • After allowing the brownies to cool, turn them out onto a plate. Frost the top with the minty frosting.
  • In a small, microwavable cup, heat the chocolate bark for 30 seconds. Stir and heat for 30 more seconds, if necessary.
  • Spoon the melted chocolate into a plastic bag, snip a small hole in the edge of the bag and drizzle the chocolate over the brownie.

That right there is a whole lotta’ deliciousness!

Maybe it’s time for a new resolution: Try these NOW!

Believe me, I like eating them even more than taking pictures of them. What’s that say? However, because these are so decadent, a little bit goes a long way. Good thing I had friends to share with!

Moving on.

I also enjoyed the sight of my dad and Dan bonding over a brand new toy.

With such a big TV, it’s almost like I’d never have to go to the movie theater again. But, sigh, Dan and I already had plans with my friend Sam and her boyfriend Vince to get dinner and see “The King’s Speech.”

Seriously, if you’re looking for a good movie to see, GO SEE THIS!

Questions: Are you on the LCD TV bandwagon? How do you like to pump up recipes?

I’m not too picky about TVs, but this one is pretty great.

To make recipes extra special, I like swapping yogurt for milk. That gives it an extra moist, delicious texture. I also rarely use frosting, but I think that’s a fun way of making things a little more special.

 

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11 responses to “Minty fresh

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