Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Stress Eating

Monday was kind of a mess. Work was crazy and stressful, and I had a million things to do on Monday night. I packed my gym bag so I could go straight to the gym from work, but instead of running off my stress and anxiety, I went a different route. I stopped at the grocery store and bought a giant bag of chips. I went home and started working on the three essays I needed to get done, all the while chomping on handfuls of greasy chips. I didn't stop there. In between mouthfuls of chips I'd throw in a Lindt truffle or two. You know, to get all the sweet and salty calories I could. Then I heard footsteps coming up the back stairs and a key in the lock...Pat was home. Embarrassed and ashamed, I shoved my bag of chips in the cabinet behind me and  tried to look buys by staring intently at the few meager sentences I'd typed in between mouthfuls. I'm a psycho. Most of the time when stressed or upset, a good run will make me feel a hundred times better. Sometimes I choose a different route (i.e. chips and chocolates).  I think Pat had an inkling of the stress eating* that had taken place - I saw him eye the pile of chocolate wrappers I'd left by my laptop. That was a bad idea. Not only is it hard to type with greasy fingertips, but it also made me feel way worse than I did before. Luckily Pat saved me from myself and I was able to get down to business on my essays.
*It seems like people are either one way or another - when they're stressed/anxious/upset they either eat everything in sight or they can't even think about food. Obviously, I'm a stress eater (terrible!) and am jealous of people who can't even stand the thought of food in times of stress, like Patrick. Which way are you?

Hours later I was (mostly) done with my essays and it was time to make some 7 Layer Bars for Chrissy. Chrissy has helped me out with some stuff recently, so I wanted to make these for her in time for when I saw her on Tuesday night. I'd never made these before, but I know they're a favorite of Chrissy's. I found a recipe here and used their servings calculator to adjust the recipe to make 12 squares instead of 36. Then I swapped a few ingredients and adjusted the amounts as I thought sounded good.
Turn oven on to 350 degrees and put butter in your pan, and pan in the oven.
While the butter melted in the oven, I prepared all of my layers:
Pat made a good point - there are 5 layers here, so why are these called 7 layer bars? Do the butter and sweetened condensed milk count as layers? I really don't think that should count!

After melting the butter in the oven I second-guessed myself, and decided to use a larger pan. In hindsight, these would be better if they were thicker, so use a smaller dish if you  have one! Pat did the dirty work for me.
After coating the bottom and sides of the pan, spread the crumbs evenly on the bottom.
Layer chocolate chips:
Layer butterscotch chips:
Layer chopped peanuts:
Pour condensed milk to cover all layers:
Cover in coconut!
(I left a little corner uncovered so Pat could try these. He doesn't like coconut! Can you imagine?!)

Bake until edges are golden brown. I baked these for 15 minutes, but if you're making thicker bars you'll want to bake longer.
Now resist temptation to dig in...these will be impossible to cut until they're completely cool.

Go ahead and let your helper play with the remaining ingredients. Haha that stuff is sticky!
Because these are thin, the finished product looked more like a 7 Layer Mountain than 7 Layer Bars.

But that didn't hurt the taste! Chrissy said that the flavor is amazing and she loves them! She has requested time I will use a smaller pan so they are easier to cut and eat!

Makes 12 bars

  • 2 tbsp and 2 tsp butter
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup butterscotch chips
  • 1/2 cup roasted and salted peanuts, chopped
  • 1/2 cup low fat sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup shredded coconut
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Put butter in loaf pan and put pan in oven to melt. Once melted, swirl to coat bottom and sides.
  2. Toss graham cracker crumbs with brown sugar. Spread crumbs evenly on bottom of pan. Layer chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and peanuts. Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over nuts. Sprinkle coconut on top.
  3. Bake until edges are golden brown. If using a loaf pan - about 25 minutes. If using a 9x9 pan - about 15 minutes.
Last night Chrissy and I met up at You're Fired - a paint your own pottery place. I'd been wanting to go (because I'm a dork) and it was nice to do something other than drinking and eating...although we also did that because Tuesday and Thursday nights are Ladies Night - which means females only (no dudes and no kids) and you can bring food and drinks to have as you paint! Such a cool idea! We didn't really plan ahead, so we stopped at the store to pick up some brie, crackers, beer, wine, and candy. I didn't remember to bring a glass for my wine, so I bought a little 4-pack of mini bottles and drank my wine straight from the bottle. So classy.

Chrissy painted a scene from Harold and the Purple Crayon on her mug, which came out great!

Chrissy took some pictures using a cool new app on her iPhone...

This morning I got up super early to get in a speed training run before work. I alternated 2 minutes of running as fast as I could with 3 minutes of running at 10mph for 55 minutes. Then Pat met me for some back and bis work and I threw in some squats for good measure.

Happy Wednesday! Everyone keep your fingers crossed that the big storm tonight blows over. I'm ready for spring!

1 comment:

  1. Woohoo I can't wait to make these! And I toootally hide my embarrassing snacks from Doug too. Right there with you.