Double Yolks. PLUS, Watch the Infomercial Online!

April 3, 2013

EXCITING NEWS! You know how I’m featured in Richard Simmons’ new infomercial for Project H.O.P.E.? The infomercial clocks in at a full 30 minutes, but the online version is only 7 minutes, and I was left on the editing room floor. So unless you set your DVR, or happened to catch it on basic cable in the middle of the night, there’s a good chance you haven’t seen my little part of the infomercial yet.

UNTIL NOW! Check it out: the portion featuring the long-term success stories (me and my friends Joanne and Lori) is now on YouTube! It’s only 80 seconds – watch right here:

Big thanks to my buddy Jon. Check out some behind-the-scenes photos from the infomercial shoot here.

Moving on…

The most bizarre thing happened recently. Read the rest of this entry »


Behind-the-Scenes at a Weight Loss Infomercial

February 14, 2013

Hey Folks! Now that Richard Simmons’ new infomercial has seen the light of day, I can share some fun behind-the-scenes scoop about the whole experience. Before I do that, a big thanks to everyone that tuned in! For anyone that doesn’t know what I’m talking about, Richard Simmons just launched a new 90-day weight loss program called Project H.O.P.E., and I’m featured as a weight loss success story in the new infomercial!

For everyone that missed it, I don’t have any information for you about how you can watch, unfortunately. I’m not in the online version of the infomercial (which can be seen here), and I don’t know if the 30-minute version that I’m in will ever appear online. As for television viewing: I’d like to think that this infomercial, just like every other infomercial ever made, will run for months and months and be inescapable. I just don’t have, at this time, any more scheduling information. What that means is that you should stay up late and watch cable TV in the middle of the night for the foreseeable future until you happen to catch it on the airwaves!

Kidding, of course. If I learn more about concrete viewing opportunities, I’ll be sure to let you know! In the meantime, you can live vicariously through these photos.

I appear three times during the infomercial. The first time is right near the beginning, when they show this graphic for a few seconds that features ‘before’ and ‘after’ photographs:

Info2 Still1

Read the rest of this entry »


TV Schedule For Richard Simmons’ New Infomercial – Featuring Me!

February 7, 2013

Just a quickie post to share some vitally important, life-or-death information: the air times for the new infomercial I’m in!

Richard Simmons is launching a new 90-day weight loss program called Project H.O.P.E., and he’s selling it via infomercial, and the infomercial started airing this week. What’s more, I’m in it! I’m not in it for long, but I provide a testimonial as to the benefits of working out with Richard long term.

Here are the channels and times you can watch it this weekend – get ready to stay up late, wake up early, or set the DVR!

Weekend Schedule

If you wanna look for it in your TiVo/DVR guide, search for “Richard Simmons’ Fat Blast.” I’m sure it will air many, many times after this weekend, but I don’t know if I’ll have access to those schedules. So grab some carrot sticks and hummus, settle in, and enjoy!

I’m featured in a photograph touting my weight loss at the beginning, and I can be seen in footage filmed at Slimmons towards the end, but my shining moment, from the interview they shot with me, is right around 15 or 16 minutes in (the infomercial is 30 minutes total).

The interview was conducted in early December, and I’ll share some photos and stories from that day in another post. For now, take note of the schedule, and plan accordingly!

Oh, and as of right now, my interview isn’t available online. There’s a 7-minute infomercial on YouTube and the Project H.O.P.E. website, but I’m not included in that shorter version. All the more reason to tune in this weekend!

KEEP IT UP, DAVID!


What’s In The RediSetGo? Part Twenty-Three

April 1, 2012

Hoping for the recap of my first big charity stair climb on Saturday? You’re shit out of luck. I could go on and on about how awesome it was, but it would be lies. That’s because I haven’t done it yet. I’m writing this post before the big stair climb, just to have my weekend post in the can. A blogger’s gotta do what a blogger’s gotta do! The recap will be posted by the time you wake up on Monday. I promise. Pinky swear.

OH, BY THE WAY – If you’re here because you followed a link attached to a angry Tweet or Facebook post, than… APRIL FOOLS! I’m not going anywhere! GOTCHA!

Today’s post is… the latest installment of the bestest, most popular game in the whole wide blogosphere! Newbies, you’re in for a treat. Enjoy the game below (don’t worry, you don’t need to know any rules), and then head to the archives (click here and scroll down) to play all twenty-two previous installments! Look at that, I just planned your Sunday for you! You’re welcome.

Are you ready? Are you wearing your safety goggles? Are you in a well-ventilated room? Good, because it’s time to play…

WHAT’S IN THE REDISETGO?

SHRIMP AND BROCCOLI are in the RediSetGo!

Just like Part Twenty-Two, I used the RediSetGo because I was in the mood for a quick, healthy, easy meal. The day before, I picked up a half-pound of fresh shrimp from the seafood counter at Whole Foods (it was on sale… score!) I counted out 8 shrimp (which was half of that half-pound), and marinated it for 30 minutes in some ponzu sauce (30 cals, 1,5 grams of fat per serving) and fresh dill:

Here’s the ponzu sauce I used:

I didn’t know if the dill would go with the Ponzu sauce or not, but I happened to have a ton of fresh dill in the house (leftover from when I made my chum last weekend), and since dill matches well with most seafood, I thought I’d give it a try.

After marinating, I loaded the shrimp into one of the RediSetGo wells (as you can see in the second picture). I loaded the other well with much broccoli as I could fit, but didn’t add any sauces or seasonings. It’s just broccoli, plain and tall.

I let it cook for about 10 minutes, then dished it up. I poured the Ponzu sauce that was left in the bottom in the RediSetGo over the broccoli:

Delicious! Shrimp were perfectly cooked, the dill and Ponzu went fine together, and the broccoli was tender. If it looks like a small meal, it was – the RediSetGo isn’t that huge of a device, after all – but it wasn’t my entire meal. I munched an equivalent amount of raw broccoli while this cooked, and also had a piece of whole wheat pita bread and a banana.

Keep It Up, David!


What’s In The RediSetGo? Part Twenty

October 9, 2011

I just got home from Palm Springs, and I’m gonna write about it and share pictures tomorrow.  In the meantime, check out this meal from last week.  I ended up busting out the RediSetGo for the first time since August… so it’s time for the game that has the entire internet-viewing public at the edge of their seats…

…What’s In The RediSetGo!

Holy crap, is this really the twentieth installment of What’s In The RediSetGo?  It is!  Before we jump in, let’s take a moment to reflect on the good times (and good meals) the RediSetGo has provided over the past year.  All the frittatas… and the brussel sprouts… and the pancakes

OK.  Reflection time is over.  The RediSetGo is still kinda on my shitlist, so a singular moment of reflection will suffice.  If you’d like to reflect more, than check the What’s In The RediSetGo archives on the My Favorite Posts page.

Grab your sunglasses, smear on the SPF, and zinc your sniffer (that’s a Ned Flanders quote), because it’s time to play!

WHAT’S IN THE REDISETGO?

SCARBOROUGH FAIR MEATBALLS are in the RediSetGo!

I’m sure I’m not the first to name a recipe “Scarborough-something” just because I used parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme, but dammit, I’m going to pretend that I am because I think it’s wicked clever!

Not familiar with Scarborough Fair?  It’s a 1966 Simon & Garfunkel song.  Watch them perform it in concert here, OR watch Paul Simon sing it with The Muppets, which was my first exposure to the song:

Until I started writing this post, I thought Simon & Garfunkel wrote the song, but it’s actually a traditional English ballad that dates back hundreds of years.  The herbs in the lyrics might be a reference to the plague, since those were the herbs used in olden days to ward off the smell of the dead.

Mentions of death and plague in a recipe post – you don’t see that on other blogs, do you?  Let’s get back on track.  I’ll show you how this dish came together.  First ingredient: extra-lean ground turkey:

I  used half of a 1.25 pound package of turkey, so that’s 5/8ths of a pound (look, Dad, I still know my fractions!).  Next I added 1/2 of a red onion, that I chopped and sauteed (in Pam) for a few minutes:

A good meatball needs bread crumbs.  The initial idea to make meatballs came from my desire to use one of the Swedish delicacies Katherine brought from Sweden (more on this later), so I embraced the Swedish nature of this meal and used crispbread (knäckebröd if you’re Swedish) for my bread crumbs.  Crispbread is more cracker-like than bread-like, and since the knäckebröd that Katherine brought me was long gone, I picked up a package of Wasa crispbread at the store:

Each big cracker is fat- and cholesterol-free and has 45 calories.  I put three in a Ziploc bag, used a wine bottle as a rolling pin, and smashed the crap of them until they were crumbs:

I also threw in 2 egg whites as a binding agent, and then I added the Scarborough Fair herbs.  I had fresh rosemary and sage (straight from Mat & Maggie’s garden), and dried parsley and thyme:

That’s about 6 sage leaves and 2 or 3 sprigs of rosemary needles.  I chopped all of it up finely, and tossed them in a bowl, along with a healthy pinch of the thyme and parsley (about 1/2 teaspoon of each):

The fun part about making meatballs is that it’s perfectly acceptable (and often recommended) to use your hands to mix it all up, so that’s what I did.  Once everything was incorporated, I rolled them into golf ball-sized balls.  I was able to make ten of them – perfect for 2 servings (my dinner, and lunch the next day):

I was ready for the RediSetGo, and a RediSetGo accessory that I’ve never used before!  Here it is – it’s called the Mini-Food Pan:

According to the recipe pamphlets that came with the RediSetGo, the Mini-Food Pan is perfect for all sorts of dishes I have no interest in making (which explains why I’ve never use it before): mini pigs-in-a-blanket (put a cocktail weiner in each well and cover with pancake batter); brownie bites, and a dish called “Stuffed Soup,” which involves mixing a can of soup, a box of Stove Top and some shredded cheese and scooping some into each well.  No, thank you.  The wells, however, were perfect for my golf ball-sized meatballs, so I sprayed it with Pam, loaded up the meatballs, and they cooked for about 10 minutes.

While the meatballs were baking in the RediSetGo (as shown in the second photo in this post), the other components of my meal came together.  I blanched some green beans, and sprinkled them with some Spike salt-free seasoning mix.  I also cracked open the Lingonberry jam that came all the way to my kitchen from a farmers’ market in Stockholm:

Here’s the end result!

The meatballs were a little dry and a little bland.  Next time, I might add some garlic or one of the egg yolks or something.  But the lingonberry jam added a little sweetness and a little moisture, and made the meatballs absolutely delicious!  The perfect bite:

While in Palm Springs, I made another dish starring green beans – it’s been a green bean week!  I’ll share that recipe soon.

Keep it up, David!


What’s In The RediSetGo? Part Eighteen

August 8, 2011

I haven’t given up on my RediSetGo.  It’s still not completely off my shitlist, either.  Even though I’m still pissed that the non-stick surface is peeling off after just a few months of use, I do have insert trays that I can use.  And since I’m continuing to use my RediSetGo (with less frequency), that means that your favorite blog-based game (and mine) isn’t headed to the retirement home quite yet.

That’s right…  it’s time to play What’s In The RediSetGo?  And this edition is super-special, because it also involves a brand-new (to me) item from the produce department.  NOPE – I take that back.  This edition is super-duper-special, because it involves TWO brand-new (to me) items from the produce department!

Are you a What’s In The RediSetGo first-timer?  Don’t get your undies in a bunch.  It’s easier to play than hide and seek, and, once you get the knack for it, you can go back and check out Parts One through Seventeen, which are all archived here.

So put on your sombrero and slather on some SPF 50, because it’s time to play!

WHAT’S IN THE REDISETGO?

SEA BASS is in the RediSetGo!  And it’s sticking to the lid!  (That’s what happens when I forget to spritz the lid with some non-stick spray.)

There.  That’s better:

The skin side was the side that stuck to the lid, and since I wasn’t planning on eating the skin, no harm was done, except for that the fish is a little less pretty.

Let’s jump back to the beginning.  I started with two pieces of sea bass, from the seafood counter at Whole Foods.  I asked the fishmonger to cut them into 6-8 ounce portions, and together they weighed about 14 ounces, so well done, fishmonger!

I did a quick marinade in a new salad dressing that I haven’t tried before:

I love blackberries, figs, and balsamic, so why wouldn’t I buy a bottle?  And a 2 tablespoon serving is only 15 calories and fat-free!  The fish sat is about 5-6 tablespoons for about an hour before going in the RediSetGo:

Meanwhile, I started work on a side dish.  Lately, I’ve really been into zucchini.  I’ve eaten it alongside chicken and built a salad around it – and I’ve been munching on it raw all summer long!  So, when I stumbled across these guys in the produce section at Whole Foods, barely a second went by before I was pawing through them and selecting some to bag up and put in my cart.  Have you seen these before?

The ridged ones are heirloom zucchini, and the round ones are appropriately named eight-ball squash.  I couldn’t find tons of info on either on the interwebs, but a few sites basically said I could use either like they were regular zucchini.  I also found an intriguing recipe that suggested stuffing eight-ball squashes like you would stuff peppers or tomatoes, so I will have to remember that for next time!  (I don’t think I’d stuff them like the recipe suggests, I’d just steal borrow the technique and devise a stuffing on my own.)

Here they are, getting cut up.

And into a pan, alongside an entire red onion, for a saute in cooking spray:

I also made some quinoa.  I followed the directions on the bag, although I replaced some of the water with the juice of 1 lemon, since lemon always goes so well with fish.  I also added generous pinches of dill and thyme, and 4 gloves of minced garlic.

My finished plate:

My annoyance at the RediSetGo disappeared when I tasted the fish, because it was cooked perfectly, and it only took about 8 minutes!  It practically fell apart into flakes when my fork touched it.  It was a touch on the bland side, though – in fact, the whole plate could have used a little sauce of some kind.  What I should have done is taken more of the blackberry & fig balsamic dressing and reduced it in a little saucepan, and drizzled that over everything.  Too bad I didn’t have that genius idea until the next morning!

The heirloom zucchini and eight-ball squash were delicious.  Guess what they both tasted like?  Zucchini.  Can’t say I’m surprised!

The RediSetGo insert tray was easy to clean (it can go in the dishwasher), and the fish was so good that I’m tempted to try to make other types of fish on the RediSetGo.  There’s tons of fishies out there that I’ve never purchased before – like the opah fish we tried in Seattle – so who knows what I’ll bring home next?

Keep it up, David!


What Makes Me Mad. What Makes Me Happy.

July 20, 2011

Yesterday I said I was still processing the three-pound gain I had this week, but the truth is that, unlike the manufacturing of Velveeta, there’s not much to process.  I have to work on losing it.  Scratch that – I am working on losing it.  Last night I went to my boot camp class, and my ass was kicked, and I ate well yesterday and have eaten well so far today.  I’ve also been thinking good thoughts (and your wonderful comments on yesterday’s post really helped).

There.  Processing finished.  Back to life.

I have two things to share today – something that pisses me off, and something that delighted me to no end.  Which first?  Let’s get the piss out of my system (which is something I’ve already done 4 times today – thanks to the gallon of water I drink daily):

What Makes Me Mad:  My RediSetGo.  Shocking, right?  I think I might be falling out of love.  A little backstory:  The RediSetGo is (was?) my favorite informercial product (watch the informercial here), and I’ve devoted SEVENTEEN (!) blog posts to food and recipes that I’ve created on it (they’re archived here).  Less than two months ago, I said goodbye to my old RediSetGo and hello to my new one, which I hoped would last me a good year – a long time for anything bought off the TV, don’t you think?

Well, the non-stick coating on my brand-new RediSetGo, after just a handful of uses, is already peeling.  Take a look:

I was cleaning my RediSetGo after I last used it, and there seemed to be some crud on it that wasn’t coming off.  So I put a little more elbow grease into it (using a soft sponge that wouldn’t scratch the finish), and it still wouldn’t come off.  Then I realized it wasn’t crud at all, but the nonstick finish bubbling from underneath.  FANTASTIC.

The RediSetGo is still technically usable, as there are insert trays that I have that would prevent any food from coming in contact with that gross surface.  I’m still pissed, though, that this new RediSetGo only lasted a couple months.

So.  What I need to do is find the receipt and check if there’s a warranty, and if it still applies if I didn’t buy the product directly from the RediSetGo folks (I bought it from Amazon).

I also think it’s time to try to get ahold of the RediSetGo folks and show them all the love I’ve been giving their product for the past 8 months.  A few of you have confessed to buying their product because of this blog, and they need to know that.  This is where I need your help:  I can’t find a contact for RediSetGo.  I can find their customer service line, but that’ll just be a call center.  I want someone in marketing, publicity or public relations.  If any of you have a second and want to help me scour the interwebs, that’d be fantastic!  Drop me a line at keepitupdavid@gmail.com if you find anything!

What Makes Me Happy:  Angel’s Flight.  It’s the little things that make me happy, and this certainly qualifies as little!  Angel’s Flight is a funicular (a type of angled railway) in downtown Los Angeles that is billed as the shortest railroad in the world.

That’s all of it, in that picture.  It’s 300 feet long, and takes riders up the steep hill between Hill and Grand.  Angel’s Flight costs a quarter to ride, so yesterday, when I was in the area, I plopped down 50 cents and bought myself a round-trip ticket:

Inside the funicular (it has stadium seating!):

On the ride down:

It doesn’t look like I have any teeth in that pic, but I do.

I think everyone’s lives would benefit from more funiculars.  I think Suzanne Somers might agree – I once read her Palm Springs compound had a funicular.

Angel’s Flight is a landmark – it’s been around for 110 years, when Bunker Hill, where it’s located, was a ritzy residential neighborhood (now it’s home to the tallest office buildings in the city).  There’s been stretches where it’s been closed, but it’s in operation now, and, despite living in Los Angeles for 9 years, this was my first time on it.  It won’t be my last!

Keep it up, David!


What’s In The RediSetGo? Part Sixteen (RERUN!)

July 17, 2011

If you’re wondering why I’m going backwards, and publishing Part Sixteen of What’s In The RediSetGo? after Part Seventeen (which I posted a few days ago), it’s because Part Sixteen is a rerun.  It initially ran as a guest post a week and a half ago on Finishing the Hat, a weight-loss blog that my friend Heidi writes.  You can read this post where it originally ran here.  I’m posting it today on my blog just so I can add it to the archives on the My Favorite Posts page.  So if you missed it on Heidi’s blog the first time around, you’re in luck!

Here’s the post, as it ran on Heidi’s blog.  Enjoy!

———————————————-

Well hello, readers and fans of Finishing the Hat!  I’m David, and I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Heidi for almost 14 years.  I still remember where and when we met (because you don’t forget when you meet someone as dynamic, funny, and memorable as Heidi): it was on the sidewalk outside the Power Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan during orientation before our freshman year in the Theatre Department at the University of Michigan.  Our entire class was walking together into the building, and all the other guys in our class were sizing each other up, acting all tough and being all alpha-male-ish (I wouldn’t have been surprised if they had whipped out their dicks to see who was biggest), and I was tired of it.  So I turned around, walked back to a pair of girls that I hadn’t met yet, and introduced myself.  One of those girls was Heidi.  And here we are, 14 years later, still friends!

Heidi and I fell out of touch for a few years, but we reconnected last fall, when she started following my weight loss blog and leaving the most wonderful, supportive comments.  One of the things she told me back then was that she’s a big fan of the recurring post that I call “What’s In The RediSetGo?”  If you aren’t familiar with the RediSetGo, then you are missing out.  It’s my favorite informercial product ever (learn more about it here), and I created a little game for my readers whenever I use it.

So, in honor of Heidi, and to thank her for inviting me to write a guest post for her blog, I give you… a very special edition of What’s In The RediSetGo?  Don’t worry – you’ll figure out the rules.  They’re easy-peasy.  Ready to play?  Here we go!

WHAT’S IN THE REDISETGO?


GRILLED CHICKEN BREAST is in the RediSetGo!


The chicken is seasoned with black pepper, and the RediSetGo cooks it up perfectly in about 10 minutes.  While a plain grilled chicken breast isn’t the most original or creative meal, it was only one element of my lunch the other day.  The entire meal was chicken with onion and rosemary sauce, served over sauteed zucchini.  It’s based on a recipe I found in the Comfort Home Diet Cookbook, but just like pretty much every recipe I come across, I modified it to better suit me (in this case, removing some butter and oil).  I’ll walk you through how I made the rest of the meal:

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, I sauteed 1 onion and 3 gloves of minced garlic in a little spritz of Pam.  I happened to have 1/2 a white onion and 1/2 a red onion in my fridge, so I used those:


After they sweated and started to turn translucent, I added 3 teaspoons of flour:


And 1/2 a cup each of low-sodium chicken broth and skim milk:


I stirred, stirred, stirred, and the sauce thickened (thanks to the flour) and became creamy (thanks to the milk), and I added the final ingredient: about a teaspoon (probably a little more) of dried rosemary, which I crushed between my palms before adding to the pot:


Then came some more stirring, and soon, a delightful sauce was finished:


Meanwhile, in my small nonstick skillet, I sauteed 1 zucchini and 1 yellow squash in a little Pam:


Put it all together, and you have one delicious-lookin’ plate!


This perfect bite had all the components on the same fork:


There you have it!  A delicious, healthy, simple meal, and if you don’t have a RediSetGo, you could easily just cook the chicken in the same pan you saute the zucchini in, or use leftover pre-cooked rotisserie chicken from the supermarket.

This actually marks my sixteenth (!) installment of “What’s In The RediSetGo” – and if you’re lookin’ for other simple, healthy meal ideas, you can check out parts 1 through 15 by clicking here and scrolling down a wee bit.

I’d like to end my guest post by saying how incredibly proud I am of Heidi and all that she’s doing to take care of herself and improve her health and well-bring.  She’s one incredible and inspiring woman, isn’t she?  Keep it up, Heidi, and…

Keep it up, David!


Package

May 24, 2011

I have a big package.  See?

This arrived for me today.  I knew exactly what it was – I’ve been waiting for it to come!  Wanna see what’s inside?  It’s…

…crumpled up paper!

BUT WAIT!  There’s more!  There’s something underneath that paper…

it’s…

it’s…

it’s my NEW REDISETGO!

Could 5-7 business days already have passed since I ordered it?  I guess so!  I felt like screaming, Kermit The Frog style:

But I didn’t.

I brought it home with me after work, and that means that I now have two RediSetGos.  My brand-new one, which is still in the box in this photo, and my old one, with its broken timer and its non-stick surface that’s bubbling, cracking, and peeling off:

But I don’t have two RediSetGos anymore.  That’s because my old RediSetGo had one final adventure, down the hall in my building.  Meet your new friend, the trash chute:

You’ve been good to me, old RediSetGo, but this is where we must go our own separate ways.  I’ll be returning back to my home, and you’ll be journeying two floors straight down, into a dumpster:

You’ve brought me so much joy, old RediSetGo… whether it was in the form of an egg scramble (the very first RediSetGo meal that I documented for this blog!) or an ostrich burger.  Oh, old RediSetGo, remember that time we made savory spinach pancakes?  And it was you that helped me rediscover brussel sprouts, which is now a favorite vegetable of mine. 

You can check out all the meals I’ve created in my old RediSetGo – all those posts are archived in the My Favorite Posts section of the blog, which you can access by clicking on… you guessed it… “My Favorite Posts” at the top of the page.

We’ve had a lot of good times, old RediSetGo, and I won’t forget them.  But I need a RediSetGo I can rely on, so I’m afraid this is goodbye.

Goodbye, old RediSetGo.

I already know how I’ll inaugurate my new RediSetGo… but it involves a main ingredient that I don’t have in my house.  Hopefully tomorrow I’ll have time to swing by the store!

Keep it up, David!


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