What Is Plus-Sized, Anyway?

13 09 2010

I need to get something off my chest.


I find the term, “plus-sized model” infuriating.


I was recently reading this article about such models rockin’ the runway at New York Fashion Week.


My problem with this term is not the models themselves.  It is more in the fact that the term “plus-sized” holds a negative connotation.  In my opinion, this is society’s way of kindly saying that these women are beautiful, albeit fat.


Even the article points out that, “sixty-two percent of women in this country are overweight.”  Awesome.  That sends a message loud and clear, doesn’t it? 


I think these fashion shows need to be attacked from 2 different angles:


  1. The classic runway model is entirely too thin.  I know a lot of women that are naturally thin and don’t look nearly as skinny as these runway models.  Similarly, models that pose for Victoria’s Secret are thin.  However, they are nowhere as thin as high-fashion runway models.  It’s okay to embrace women who are naturally thin, but it is quite another to revere a body that looks malnourished.

  3. We need to get rid of the term “plus-size”.  I’m sure no one would argue with me there.  The models that are shown should be of all sizes – not just “small” or “large”.  In order to capture the essence of the female body, we should be seeing women in all sizes.  How many friends do you have that stand over 5’9” regardless of their weight?  The average height for a woman in this country is 5’4”, so why does the modeling industry insist that they be tall?  It would be so refreshing to see short, tall and average sized women.  It would be refreshing to see women with big chests, small chests, muscular arms, not-so-muscular arms, crooked smiles and perfect teeth. 


We are all beautiful and it’s about time the fashion industry recognizes it.




Pumpkin spice oatmeal = The best way to start the day.


(Picture from this weekend.  I forgot :oops: )




In the mix:


  • 1/3 cup oats

  • 1/3 cup milk

  • 1/3 cup pumpkin

  • Pinch salt

  • Dash vanilla

  • ~ ¼ tsp pumpkin pie spice

  • Extra cinnamon to taste




  • All topped with a scoop of peanut butter




Veggie burger, laughing cow and an Arnold thin = a cheeseburger on the go :wink:




With a simple side salad of mixed greens and yogurt ranch for dressing.






An apple a day keeps the doctor away, ya heard?




My last Larabar (tear).  I’ll have to break down and get more soon.




Chat with you tomorrow, lovebugs. 


Question – What do you think about the term “plus-sized”?

Carbs For You and Me

13 09 2010

A few years ago, I started seeing a nutritionist.  I had only learned to eat well through tools such as Weight Watchers or constant calorie counting.  These things had become a crutch for me and I was simply looking to free myself of the food-by-numbers association.

The problem, however, was the nutritionist was a body builder.  I was extremely upfront and told him I was not looking to compete.  But, that didn’t stop him.  Within the next three weeks, I was “snacking” on protein shakes twice a day.  The only carbs allowed in my diet were oatmeal (the Weight Control kind by Quaker with all that fake sugar, too), potatoes and brown rice.  And, obviously, lean meats and egg whites were king.

He banned me from fruit.  I’m not just talking high sugar fruits, either.  I remember asking him if berries were okay because they are one of the best fruits one can eat.  I knew this because I had done my research.  I knew about food, yet I didn’t trust myself.  I allowed him to tell me that strawberries were “bad”.

I lasted three weeks on his program.  I told him I wasn’t happy and began to see a woman instead.  She was awesome.  When I told her about the previous program, she knew right away that he had a background in body building.  Sure, that diet will make you lean.  But, it’s no way to live.  Instead, she was an advocate for all foods.  Unfortunately, I had to stop working with her because we were in the process of buying our house and her services were simply too expensive.

I learned a valuable lesson through this, though.  I am smarter than I give myself credit for.  I know what works for me.  This new knowledge, coupled with the discovery of food blogs a few months later, changed my life.  Truly.  No extra dramatics involved.  I’ve been a better person ever since.  I’m a real person, who eats real food.

This dinner is for my first trainer.  All of this whole wheat pasta would probably cause him to fall off his chair :wink:



Side Caesar salad


Simple and to the point.

There was enough whole wheat carbohydrate goodness in this baby for you and me.  Yum & yum.

One thing’s for sure, I will never listen to anyone else but me when it comes to my eating habits.  No food is off limits.  And, that’s just the way I like it.

Question – Have you ever had a similar experience?

Busy Monday

12 09 2010

Mornin’ lovelies!


How are you today?


Remember when I told you my sister moved to Florida a few weeks ago?  Well, Mr. KD, my parents and I are going down to visit her on October 9th.  While I am STOKED about it, I have a lot to get done before then at work.  I am letting you know in case my posts aren’t as thoughtful and insightful as they generally are in the coming weeks.  I’m going to try and feature new recipes to keep things interesting, but that’ll have to wait until next week.  This week, my dinners are going to be things you’ve seen from posts past.


So, just be patient with me.  Mmkay?




I’m trying Uncle Sam’s cereal for the first time.  I was given a coupon to try it out during HLS, so I’m giving it a shot.  I’ll let you know how it is!




I’m bringing along two of cereal’s best friends, too:






I packed up a ham & cheese on an Arnold deli thin.  I started with a Laughing Cow cheese wedge, a few slices of ham and some yellow mustard.




And a side of trusty carrots.  I love these things because they are easy to grab-and-go.  I need the convenience of products like this.






A juicy plum




For the 3:30 snack craving, I packed up my second favorite lime & salt popcorn.  Second only to this kind, naturally.




Hope you guys have an AWESOME Monday :smile:


Talk to you later!

‘Tis the Season

12 09 2010

…for football, food and friends.

The start of the NFL season is a huge day for the KD household.  The season not only signifies the beginning of Fall, but also lets us know that the NHL and NBA seasons are not that far behind.  This is just another reason why now – December is my favorite time of year!!

While we snack on football goodies all year long during the games, the first game and the playoffs bring out the big guns.

My parents came over to watch the game, along with Mr. KD’s friend.

We had quite the spread.  In fact, it counted for lunch and dinner because there is no way I could fit another morsel of food in my mouth.  That’s okay, though.  The first week only happens once!

I hope you all enjoyed your weekend and the start of the season as much as we did :grin:

Mexican Dip

(Layer Refried Beans seasoned with taco seasoning, sour cream, guacamole, Mexican cheese, lettuce, tomato)


Chips for dipping


Crackers and Cheese

(Classic cheddar and a DELICIOUS local fig & pecan cheese)

It literally tasted like dessert

DSC03754 DSC03750 DSC03753

Stuffed Mushrooms

(I’ll share the recipe some other time!)


Mixed Nuts

(The football staple)


Ice Cream Pie

(The star of the evening, as made by Mr. KD’s friend)


Oh yes.  It was a good day.

I hope you all enjoy the remainder of your Sunday!!

Talk to you tomorrow morning!

Question: What did you do to kickoff the season?

Any Good Doctors Out There?

9 09 2010

Hi, Loves :smile:


Thanks for all your kind words about the doctor’s office yesterday.  I didn’t write about how it went because I honestly needed time to cool down.


I was so irritated with the way the appointment was handled.  I think I might be in the market for a new doctor.  I don’t want to go into detail, but sometimes, I think doctors need to listen to their patients a bit more.  I’m sure they get their fair share of crazies, but each time I go, I leave feeling as though I wasn’t taken seriously.  In reality, I only go after something has bothered me for a long time and I’m genuinely seeking “expert” advice.  I’ve just yet to actually receive any advice and the entire appointment was a waste of time.


Needless to say, I’m going for a X-RAY on the leg today since it’s impossible to see what the bump may be without one (this is not why I’m mad, btw.  I understand this completely).  As far as the toenail, I was advised to “wait it out”.  Maybe they’re right, but I’ve been “waiting this out” since April and the thing has only gotten worse.  Whatevs.  I decided to just wait anyway because the next step is the podiatrist and I really, really do not want to go to one of those.  Let’s just say my feet are a mess and I know that any respectable podiatrist is going to ask me why I haven’t taken action yet.  Frankly, I don’t want to hear it nor do I want to talk about it.


I was also treated poorly and when I asked advice on something else, I was once again given the run around.  I felt like I could have had the same conversation with a friend and it wouldn’t have cost me $20.


I simply wish doctors would put a little more stock in the fact that I KNOW my body.  When I say something is not right, I mean it. 


Ugh! :evil:


The end.




We had some bananas that were in do-or-die mode, so I decided to scoop one up to mash onto some Van’s waffles with peanut butter.  Honey and cinnamon to be applied at the office :smile:






I know you’re sick of looking at it, but this casserole made a lot!  Mmkay? :wink:






Not sure if I’ll need this guy, but it’s good to have him just in case!




Have a good one, loves!  Enjoy your Friday!


Tell me – Do you ever feel this way after a doctor’s visit?

Scaling Back on Exercise

9 09 2010

The older I get, the more living a healthy lifestyle seems to just make sense.  It feels innate and much less of a struggle as it did in my early 20’s.  At the same time, I’ve been evaluating the role exercise plays in my life.  I’ve come to the realization that it’s not as important to me as it once was.  It’s not that I don’t view it as essential to my life, but more so that I am beyond the point of letting it take up that much of time.

I’ve been working out at the same time for years now.  I love working out in the morning because it gives me a sense of accomplishment before I even get to work.  It helps me start the day off right.   As much as I love that aspect of it, I often feel like I’m living in the movie Groundhog Day.  While my lifting schedule does change, it doesn’t offer enough diversity to make me feel as though one day is different from the next.

I started thinking about that this week and realized that I used to spring out of bed in the morning to hit the gym.  While I still love my workouts, I’ve lost a bit of spring in my step.  I think my loss of enthusiasm is due to a variety of factors.  I’m busier than I have ever been, which is common.  Life hands out more responsibilities as time passes.  I also think I need more sleep now.  I used to operate fine on 6.5 hrs, which has changed significantly.  By the end of the week, my body is tired and is requiring more sleep.

Most of all, my mental health is about to snap from having the same routine for almost 4 years now.  The gyms have changed and I’ve moved several times, but the act of packing my gym back and hoofing it to work out in the dark has not changed.  Frankly, I need to switch things up.

So, I’m doing the unthinkable: I’m giving myself a rest day during the work week.  Crazy, right? :wink:   There was a time that I would have thought this was crazy.  Now, I realize that five days of exercise is plenty to maintain my healthy lifestyle.  Six days worked for me for a long time, but now it seems a bit too much when I weigh all of my other responsibilities.  Taking a day each week to sleep in and rest will break up that Groundhog Day feeling, too.

It might sound insignificant to those reading this, but to me, it’s a big deal to come to this realization.  Exercise does NOT have to take up too much time nor should it leave me feeling tired at the end of the week.  I exercise for fun and because it makes me feel good.  This is the same reason why, despite the fun I’m having running lately, I don’t want to sign up for a race.  I don’t want the pressure of having to run a certain amount on the weekend.  That is MY time and if there comes a weekend when I only feel like running 4 miles as opposed to a longer run, I want the freedom to do that.

Eating healthily hasn’t caused me stress in a long time, but exercise has been different.  It hasn’t necessarily caused me stress, but I’ve had to work harder to find a balance for myself when it came to working out.  I think 5 days a week is going to be great for me. 

I’ll basically be cutting out one day of running, leaving me to run 2 days (followed by weight training) and to cross-train 2 days (followed by weight training).  I still plan to keep up with my longer runs on Saturday mornings, but I can’t see those runs ever taking more than 1.5 hours.  I simply have bigger things on my plate and I refuse to devote more time to exercise.  It’s just not as important to me right now as – say – working on my house.

Take that, exercise.  You’re no longer # 1 around here! :mrcool:

That feels really good to say!


Before going to the doctor’s, I snacked on an apple to hold me over.



When I got home, I heated up a leftover pork chop and the remainder of the brussel sprouts.  I also toasted a Thomas’ bagel thin and smeared it with a Laughing Cow cheese wedge.


I’m not sure why, but this made me uncomfortably full.  Perhaps it’s because I ate it too fast?  Not sure, but I definitely didn’t need an afternoon snack!


Mr. KD is doing his poker thang tonight, so I’m on my own for dinner.  It is actually quite refreshing to have one less day of meal planning during the week!

Bring on those leftovers.  The chili and cornbread casserole heats up really well.  I was worried that the cornbread might become too dry or stale, but it hasn’t!  Thankfully, I don’t get sick of meals that I genuinely like.


I may pack this for lunch tomorrow and I may use the same photo because at this point, you know what it looks like!

Do tell – How many days a week do you exercise?

Signs of Old Age?

8 09 2010

Mornin’! :mrgreen:

Isn’t it fabulous how quickly Thursday is upon us?  I can taste the weekend already!

Today, I’m going to the doctor’s at lunchtime because I have this strange bump on my shin.

I’ve had it for months and thought it was entirely common.  I swear I’ve seen other people with these Bad Larry’s before, too.  Lately, (okay, more than just “lately”) it’s become extremely tender and feels like a bruise.  I’m not sure if it’s from running.  At first, it only hurt when I ran.  But now, it actually hurts whenever my foot strikes the ground, i.e. when I walk. 

Perhaps it’s actually just a shin splint gone awry?  I’m hoping that they’ll tell me to ice and send me on my way.  I simply wanted to have it looked at because my family has a history of benign cysts that have had to be removed.  If this is the case, I’d like to know now before such a thing becomes a problem.  You picking up what I’m putting down? 

Truthfully, if a friend or family member had this thing and it was as tender as mine has been for this long, I would have forced them to go to the doctor’s a long time ago :oops:   I admit it.

And while I’m there, I might as well have them look at my bum toenail that appears will never heal.  I’ve had black toenails before from running, but this one is – just – different.  I’ll leave it at that so you don’t get grossed out and stop reading my blog.

Clearly, I’m a mess.  Is this a sign of old age? :wink:

I’m actually working from home today because of the appointment, so breakfast is all I have to report on right now.  Lunch and snacks to come later!


Yes, yes, yes!  Pumpkin oats!!!!

In the mix:

  • 1/3 cup oats
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 pumpkin
  • Pumpkin pie spice (~ ¼ tsp)
  • Extra cinnamon
  • Pinch salt (Don’t leave this out!  It helps the flavors meld)
  • Dash of vanilla
  • Drizzle of honey (to really capture the sweetness of “pie”!!)


  • Naturally Nutty Butter Toffee peanut butter
  • Dried Cranberries

It’s like having pumpkin pie for breakfast, I tell ya.  Smooth, creamy and DYNAMITE.


I also put pumpkin pie spice in my coffee ground this morning to really capture the fall flavor!

Okay, Loves!  I hope you have a fantastic Thursday!  Chat with you guys later :grin:

Food Should Be Fun, Beautiful and Exciting

8 09 2010

Something occurred to me today.

Food should be fun.  It should be a source of entertainment, joy and fond memories.

Yet, sadly, I think these simple reasons for loving food have become lost in society.  Americans have the tendency of abusing food.  People label “bad” foods, restrict certain foods from their diet, indicate that they “can’t” eat something and – conversely – binge until the point of sickness.

Why?  More importantly, can these negative attitudes be stopped?

As someone who not only loves food, but identifies much of her personality with this love, I am encouraging all of my readers to make a change and view food in a different light.

But first, let’s talk about how we got here.  Families used to eat home-cooked meals together every night.  These meals were made with real ingredients and people were rarely overweight.  Strangely enough, these meals were made with butter, sugar, real cream and full-fat dairy products – foods that today’s “dieters” wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole, despite being much heavier than their ancestors that dined on this fare.

Shortly after, women began to go to work.  The American family was busier.  They needed help getting dinner on the table, so it’s easy to see why fast food restaurants began to take off.  The busier people are, the less they eat between meals.  Or worse, meals were being skipped altogether.  Fast food joints fixed this by offering larger portion sizes.

And so on and so on…

Fast forward to 2010 and we’re fatter than we’ve ever been.  As is our nature in America, we want things done now.  We know we’re unhealthy, but we’d rather follow a diet program where someone tells us exactly what to eat than learn about the best nutrition for our bodies.  We are living under the false assumption that telling people to say no to carbs is the answer.  As evidenced by our obesity epidemic, this strategy isn’t working.

Others count calories daily and while this works for some (I actually think it’s a great beginner exercise to weight loss), it’s stressful and tiresome for many others.  Plates of food turn from wholesome and delicious to a mathematical equation.  Throw in the calories burned from exercise and the addition and subtraction of calories is enough to give anyone a headache and quit.  Who has time for that, anyway?

It’s time to go back to the drawing board.

Imagine if we viewed food for what it was – beautiful, delicious and fuel for our bodies.  It’s time to stop being afraid of food and realizing that there are no “bad” foods, but only bad choices.

I hope that in the past, I have not misconstrued my view of food.  You will often hear me talk about ingredients labels.  I try to avoid processed foods that contain ingredients I can’t pronounce or key “icky” ingredients, such as high fructose corn syrup or partially hydrogenated oils.  I don’t point out these ingredients to scare you into not eating them.  I simply point them out because – in my opinion – they are not food.  This is why I try to avoid them. 

To me, a cookie should be made with sugar and not corn that has been manufactured to taste like a cheaper alternative to sugar.  That’s not food – it’s a lab experiment.  It takes away from the magnificence that is a baked good. 

If we all adopted such an attitude, I think it would make a world of difference in our society.  I want us to cook with real ingredients and to take pride in the dishes we serve to ourselves and our families.  I want baked goods to be made butter, sugar and LOVE.  I want us to view food as the precious gift that it is.  I’d like to see us return to home-cooked meals that leave us satisfied after small portions.  If we allowed more real food into our lives, we would be less likely to binge on the packaged stuff.  Our bodies would be more content, better fueled and less anxious about our next meal because our next meal would be REAL and SATISFYING.

Lastly, I would like to say that I realize cooking with butter and full-fat dairy products on a daily basis can have a negative effect on one’s health.  I don’t expect us to bake cakes every day or smother our dishes in cheese.  I still believe in moderation, but I think we should be living moderately in the world of real food rather than moderating our consumption of Cheetos and Coke (Mmm…Cheetos).

It is my hope that my house will be one forever filled with food, friends and family.  I wish it to be a place where others can come and enjoy a meal without worrying about calories or artificial ingredients.  I hope it will be a place where all feel comfortable because we are all as beautiful as the food we eat.  I plan to make it a place where McDonald’s is welcomed on occasion, but homemade meals reign supreme.  It’ll be a place where no one has to be a perfect eater because, truthfully, there isn’t such a thing.  In reality, all food is beautiful and being “perfect” only means eating what makes us feel comfortable, strong and nourished.

Join me in this view, won’t you?


We kept things simple tonight.  Mr. KD is starting a hockey league that meets on Wednesday nights, so he requested that we not eat anything too rich or heavy.  Easy enough!

I marinated and grilled some pork chops and roasted brussel sprouts in the oven with a mixture of olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper.


We also tried a new product:  Alexia’s Select Sides.  This baby was awesome!  Each package (there are different flavors) contains an infused olive oil blend for cooking.  You simply defrost the olive oil package in warm water, place it in a skillet on medium-high heat and sauté your veggies until done.  Perfect for the nights when you can’t fathom cutting veggies – never mind a variety of veggies.


We have the pork.  Sometimes, I think a gas grill is unnecessary and a George is all you need.  These were perfection.


Roasted brussels – oh how I love thee.


And lastly, let’s talk about this super easy side.  Oh my gosh.  The flavor was awesome.  The potatoes cooked up to a soft, lovely texture, but the green beans stayed crunchy.  Riddle me that?!?  The mushrooms were meaty and flavorful.  The onions simply took it over the top.  They blended with the infused herb blend in the oil perfectly.  I can’t wait to try other varieties.


Okay, confession time:  I ate all the green beans and mushrooms and then smothered the potatoes and onions in ketchup.  It did not need more seasoning, but I can’t control myself around potatoes.  They are the perfect ketchup vehicle!  So, sue me.  Don’t you know me well enough by now? :wink:

Off to spend time with Mr. KD before he hits the ice :smile:

P.S. Join the discussion on The Ketchup Diaries’ Facebook page.  You know you want to!

Fall Fashion

7 09 2010

Mornin’, Lovebugs!


I thought and thought and thought and thought about what to showcase in today’s Workout Wednesday and came up with nada.  Zilch. 


Oh well.  I’d rather not write about something I’m not feeling, anyway.


What I am feeling are the new looks for Fall.  I love, love, love fall and winter clothes.  I find that they flatter a woman’s body more than shorts and a tank ever could. 


It is also possible that I get more excited about shopping for these clothes than your average adult.  I went to Catholic schools from preschool – high school, so back to school shopping was something I didn’t get to participate in as a kid.  Instead, I got a new pair of shoes and new uniform blouses.


Let’s just say I’m making up for lost time :wink:


I noticed a few trends while running errands this past weekend.  I figured I’d recap them here to make life simple for my fellow fashionistas :smile:


Trend # 1: Jeweled Tones




Jeweled tones provide a sophisticated pop of color to an otherwise boring outfit.  Try a bright colored jacket or show a little pizzazz with a jeweled color scarf.


Trend # 2: Military Chic




Studded jackets are everywhere.  I am loving this trend.  It’s hip and edgy.  If studded jackets aren’t your thing, then look for military-inspired blouses in khaki, white and olive green.


Trend # 3: Leopard Accessories




I think I’ve been rocking this trend for about 3 years.  Glad to see it’s actually “in” style now :wink:   Everywhere you go, you’ll be bombarded with leopard high heels, leopard clutches and leopard scarves. 


Trend # 4: Sophisticated Flapper




This look adds a bit of softness to the retro flapper.  Look for soft ruffles at the hem of skirts and dresses.  Long necklaces complete the look.


Trend #5: Lace Up Boots




I can’t get into this one yet.  Never say never, though.  I’ve rocked my share of jumpsuits and ankle booties – both of which I wasn’t feeling when they first arrived on the scene.


Trends Worth Hanging Onto:


  • Leggings

  • Tunics

  • Statement necklaces

  • Boyfriend blazers

  • Knee-high boots


Now, get shopping :mrgreen:




I decided to do something a bit different for breakfast.  I packed up two Van’s waffles and a peach Chobani.  I plan to top each waffle with the Chobani and a few pecans for crunch. 




I love these waffles, btw.  I just thought you should know.  Then again, this comes as no surprise since I love all carbs :smile:




Obviously :wink:






I’ve decided that I’m better off bringing two snacks to work.  Sometimes, I only need one.  But then there are days like yesterday where I was starving at 10AM and ate my apple, which was supposed to be my afternoon snack.  I’m lucky enough to have a full cafeteria at my work, but if I can avoid spending money, I’d much prefer that route.


So, we have a mini:




And an orange




I just realized that between the peach yogurt, the mini and the orange, I ate a lot of – well – orange today :smile:


Have a fabulous Wednesday, Lovebugs!

Chili and Cornbread Casserole

7 09 2010

I am all about comfort food right now.  I think I’ve made that clear in previous posts.

To me, comfort food equates to a warm bowl of soup or even better – a warm casserole.

There is nothing quite like a killer casserole.  First off, they are generally quite easy to make.  And secondly, they re-heat well and can serve as more than one meal per week.  Score and score!

Not only is this a casserole, but it’s chili and cornbread.  You don’t get much closer to comfort food than that. 

We’ll definitely be eating some leftovers later in the week and taking portions for lunches, too.

As always, I changed the recipe a bit.  The original recipe can be found here.  Don’t shy away because of the large ingredient list.  I bet most things can either be found in your cabinet or are weekly staples on your grocery list.


Chili Cornbread Casserole

To Make the Chili:

  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 red pepper, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound 94% lean ground turkey
  • 2 15-ounce cans kidney beans, rinsed
  • 1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes, undrained
  • 3 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper

To Make the Cornbread:

  • 1 1/4 cups cornmeal
  • 3/4 cup whole-wheat flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar (The recipe called for 2.  I used 3.  I would actually use 4 next time, but I like sweet cornbread)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 1/4 cups low-fat milk
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh chives (or green onions)
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese (Do yourself a favor and shred it yourself.  It will taste better!)


    To prepare chili: Heat oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook until beginning to soften, about 4 minutes. Add pepper and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add turkey and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until browned, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in beans, tomatoes and their juice, chili powder, cumin, paprika, cayenne and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to maintain a simmer, cover and cook until slightly thickened, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

    Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch (or similar 3-quart) baking dish with cooking spray.

    To prepare cornbread: Whisk cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk egg, milk and oil in a medium bowl. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients along with chives and stir until just combined. Transfer the chili to the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with cheese. Spread the cornbread batter evenly over the chili.

    Bake the casserole until the top springs back when touched lightly, 20 to 25 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.


Other than wanting the cornbread a smidge sweeter, this was SO OUTRAGEOUSLY delicious.  I keep saying that lately, but it’s the truth! 

I don’t think I’ll make chili without a cheesy cornbread “top” ever again!  The cheese was a surprise in every bite.  Next time, I might get crazy and add more cheese.  I’m a wild child like that :wink:

This is the perfect recipe to serve during football season to a crowd.  The recipe serves 8, but the portions are very substantial.  It’s extremely filling without weighing you down, which I find with recipes that incorporate a lot of beans.  In fact, you could leave out the meat entirely and make a vegetarian version quite easily.

I cannot wait to eat the leftovers!!  Guess what I’ll be backing for lunch?!? :grin:

And with that, I’m off!

Question: Do you have a favorite casserole?

I’m not sure if you can call it a casserole, but I love a homemade chicken pot pie with lots of veggies!