So long, farewell, auf Wiedersehen, good night…

This is where I say a goodbye to many of you. Oh it’s not a permanent goodbye for most of you, as you tend to all come back around Valentine’s Day, but many of you flee this time of year. Many people write or comment that you won’t be coming to my site for a while, that it’s too much temptation while you make your “lifestyle change”.

Let me be the first to assure you that if you can’t look at photos of food without setting off some sort of trigger, than you are not on a lifestyle change, you are on a diet. If you can’t figure out how to fit in a brownie once in a while then you aren’t going to last. If you have always had a sweet tooth, which if you come to this site you probably do; it is quite unrealistic I hate to tell you to give up sugar for the rest of your life. I should know, on a dare I once did Sugar Busters for a year. Did I lose weight? No, in fact I gained 12 pounds. Why, because I never lost my sugar craving. I lost my craving for bread, but never sugar. I got horrible migraines and was pretty much a miserable b!tch to anyone and everyone that came my way. My doctor told me to go back on sugar (how many do that?) and sure enough it cleared up my migraine problem.

If you want to change your diet, the more power to you. But all I ask is that you think about not doing anything extreme. You will lose weight at first, probably quickly. Every one of my friends to go low carb has always lost weight…and always found it again. You don’t even need to spend money on books or going to meetings or eat prepackaged foods. It’s always been a simple formula…take in less calories than what you put out. There is a website (that has an app as well) called My Fitness (no they aren’t compensating me in any way) that is not only free but will scare the crap out of you if you are honest with it. If you plug in all your food and click done with the day it will tell you how much you will weigh in 5 weeks if you ate like that every day. It works both ways, have a crazy eating day it will probably scare you into not eating that much. Eat within reasonable calorie range for your weight and height and you will probably like the number that will show up in 5 weeks. Either way it’s up to you. It doesn’t matter if you don’t put it down that you ate it…your body knows you did and will make your jeans tight all the same. :)

You will not see diet recipes on here. I won’t be doing any low fat desserts (the least selling cookbooks ever FYI are low fat desserts). Which means some of you will leave sadly. But I believe in staying true to myself and that means not putting up sugar free, fat free pudding as a dessert. Because it’s not. In fact I’m pretty afraid to even know what is in half that stuff. Yikes.

For those who have learned to indulge once in a while I offer up my Brownie Tart and Hot Chocolate Ice Cream. This is a rich tart and a little slice will go a long way. Perfect for those in a lifestyle change.

Brownie Tart with Hot Chocolate Ice Cream

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
3 large eggs
1 egg yolk
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt

Grease and flour a 9-inch tart pan with removable sides. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Melt the butter in a bowl set over simmering water. Add 2 cups of the chocolate chips, remove from the heat, and stir until the chocolate melts. Set aside to cool completely.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the eggs, yolk, sugar, and vanilla on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Stir in the cooled chocolate. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt, and the remaining 1 cup of chocolate chips.

Fold the flour mixture into the batter until just combined. Pour into the pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes, until the center is puffed (the top may crack). The inside will still be very soft. Cool to room temperature before removing the sides of the tart pan.
Adapted from Ina Garten

Hot Chocolate Ice Cream

1 cup milk
4 tsp. cornstarch
2 cups heavy cream
2/3 cup hot chocolate mix
¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup granulated sugar
¼ tsp. salt
3 tbsp. cream cheese, softened
1 ½ cups mini marshmallows

In a bowl, stir together 1/4 cup milk and the cornstarch; set slurry aside.

In a 4-qt. saucepan, whisk together remaining milk and the cream, sugar, hot chocolate mix, cocoa powder, and salt; bring to a boil over medium-high heat.

Cook for 4 minutes; stir in slurry. Return to a boil and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Place cream cheese in a bowl and pour in 1/4 cup hot milk mixture; whisk until smooth. Then whisk in remaining milk mixture.

Place into a container and place into the fridge for at least 6 hours, even better if you do over night. Make sure that you ice cream bowl for your machine has sat in the freezer for at least 24 hours.

Pour mixture into an ice cream maker; process according to manufacturer’s instructions. Add marshmallows just as ice cream is finishing. Transfer ice cream to a storage container and freeze until set.

Adapted from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams


  1. The beginning of the year marks the time when I have more time to play around in the kitchen. I assure you, you’ll be seeing more of me.

  2. haha, yup I will be cutting out snacking and dessert eating during the week in these next months, but I will still come here, because what you write is wonderfully hilarious and interesting. my friends and I use my fitness pal to see our daily or whatever exercise updates. If I actually used it for an eating log I bet i would lose weight faster!!

  3. I am here for the long hall. Bring in the calories!

  4. I am here daily!!! I don’t comment often but do drool daily!!! If I need to make something for a staff mtg, you are my go to site!!! Keep up the good work!!

  5. Oh my gosh that ice cream looks amazing! I will definitely be trying that :) Thanks for sharing.

  6. I love your in-your-face frankness. And the recipes… always get my heart racing. I did try a 21-day no junk food diet challenge. It meant no fastfood (easy), no cakes, ice-cream, sodas, brownies, and get this, they specifically mentioned nutella. I completed the challenge but i was on angry-b*tch pms mode the whole time. And the fact that my office colleagues had to bear with it AND not get any sweet treat during the whole duration (i am the resident baker, they are my lab rats), proved too much for them too. It must’ve been a momemt of insanity when I decided to go on that diet.

  7. I refuse to “go on a diet” but we will reboot our eating a bit as we always do in January. I don’t give up desserts or calories though! Fruits and Vegetables do make a more frequent appearance at our table. It’s all about moderation and enjoyment of flavor here.

  8. Katie Rose says:

    I was sad when I saw the title show up in my reader because I thought you meant YOU were leaving! Thank goodness that is not the case, I love coming here to read a refreshing dose of your frank point of view on various snippets of life. I hope this coming year has lovely things in store for you. God Bless!

  9. A little of both and I’ll always be here, comment or no.

  10. I will be with you this January as I have the last four or five. If I want a low-fat dessert, I’ll reach for a mandarin orange, an apple or a banana. When I want to indulge I’ll be here. :)

    Here’s to a happy, healthy and fulfilling 2012!

  11. I like to read the recipes and look at the pictures even when I don’t plan to eat the sweets. Vicarious enjoyment!

  12. I hardly ever comment…but just wanted to say im going to be around for the long run..dieting is not for me.

  13. I’ll still be here, enjoying your treats and your sense of humor. I use the ‘moderation’ trick all year long, so I never have to give anything up.

  14. I don’t diet! I eat healthily and indulge.

    That bownie tart looks amazing.



  15. Agreed completely! I’m planning on writing a post about food/fitness soon enough, I think I will include this one.

    but not the one about not having time for exercise :p

  16. I’ll still be with you Peabody :)
    And you are so right with your dieting advice. I lost 20 lbs by simply paying attention to what I ate and exercising. Oh – I also lost that weight eating real butter, using real sugar, etc. Just watching how much I consumed. I hate “fake” diet food!
    Looking forward to seeing what you bring us in the upcoming year.

  17. I’m all with you. I’ve made a complete lifestyle change, but there’s always room for dessert in my day. The only rule I have: if I’m going to eat something, it better be worth the calories! And your recipes always are…

  18. I’ve had great success with Weight Watchers. It gives me the control I need to keep track of what I eat. Eat less/Exercise more.. that’s the only thing that will take off the pounds.
    And low fat, sugar free? they can keep it. If I want to eat something sweet and rich, oh my that tart looks fabulous, I’m going to eat it, count it, and walk it off.
    Keep up the good work, I’m sticking around

  19. I’m not going anywhere! My diet consists of desserts year round. And good thing too cause I would have to miss something like this today! God I want it!

  20. I’ll stick with you til the end.

  21. I’m here and January – March is when I play the most in my kitchen. I have done every “diet” under the sun and have learned that it’s more about moderation and I can’t deprive myself or I will fail. So brownies with hot cocoa ice cream might just be my New Year’s Treat to welcome in 2012, followed by a nice walk in the brisk Wisconsin Winter Air. Happy New Year to you!

  22. I know what I’m bringing to the New Year’s Eve party. I agree with other posters – everything in moderation. And your desserts are so worth extra time in the gym. Wishing you a great 2012.

  23. i’m on your side peabody! what also bothers me this time of year is that the january issues of all the food magazines are all about light and healthy recipes, after they just gave us super indulgent issues in december, and then in february they’re right back to superbowl food and comfort food. super annoying!

  24. my jeans are a little too tight for my liking so I need a little kick myself in the butt and get eating normally again.

    I still eat my desserts just smaller pieces. 2 cookies instead of one off every tray that comes out of the oven. Little changes for me seem to work the best.

    I’ve tried “dieting” and it got me no where but with watching what I ate and controlling my portion sizes I lost 20 lbs.

  25. I will be sticking around. I have no issue looking at or baking yummy goodies all year round, I don’t change the blogs I read in the new year!

  26. I’m not going anywhere…

  27. Peabody, I come here to read what you write, see the gorgeous photos, and drool over the recipes. Don’t worry, I’ll still come to your blog every chance I get!!!

    I made the M&M reindeer/nutter butter cookies for Christmas – what a cute cookie! Thank you!

  28. Mmmm, that ice cream looks really good! My ice cream maker just said it wants to make it sometime…though not sure when that will be with my lovely work schedule. :-) I WILL still be coming to check out what you’ve made, though!

  29. I’m eating light as I do every year on January 1st when I feel those love handles pouring over the edge of the waist of my favorite jeans, but I promise to come and visit for drools :) Love ya Girl! Happy New Year!

  30. omg!!! it’s chocolate+chocolate, I definetly want some :D

  31. Don’t worry, you won’t lose me as a reader, I bake all year long. All things in moderation! I definitely do not believe in deprivation.

  32. I cant imagine telling myself I could give up sweets. Ha, I just don’t have that kind of will power. I, like your readers, wouldn’t last long. Ill just skip the inevitable guilt complex and sneak another cookie. I’m always real with myself and try go moderate everything.

  33. I love your posts and your pictures, so I could never stay away from your blog. I smiled to myself when I read that your doctor recommended eating more sugar, how often does that happen? Your brownie tart looks so lucious, I love it! Happy New Year!


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