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Richard Simmons Newsletter: October 2017

The SCARY Month!
           Hello there my Clubhouse Members and Website Friends!
           Are you ready for October?  I am!  This is the month it really begins to feel like Autumn in many places.  And this is the month my wonderful brother, Lenny, celebrates his birthday.  (Happy Birthday Lenny!!!)  But then.... at the very end of the month... comes the day that makes October a bit, well, SCARY!
            That's right! Halloween!  It's not scary because of all the ghosts and goblins... it's scary because of all the CANDY, and popcorn balls, and parties, and temptations!  Halloween marks the beginning of the holiday season. It will be non-stop holiday "theme food" from now until we ring in the new year.   Are you ready to face these challenges?  I hope so.  Planning is key!
         Even as a kid in the French Quarter, we planned for Halloween.  Of course, back then, I was planning for all the candy I wanted to eat!
         My father started thinking of ideas for costumes in August. He would sit down and sketch them at first, then he would go to Krauss and get patterns, material, and accessories to make the costumes. He was such a gifted guy! I told him, "Dad, you are so talented! Is there anything you can't do?" And he said, "The only thing I can't do is keep you quiet!" LOL!
        One year, Lenny was Dracula, complete with creepy makeup, including dripping, artificial blood. I was a bat with a wingspan of 6 feet! I almost killed a few of the kids out trick or treating. My father would buy pumpkins and carve jack-o-lanterns out of them that we carried door to door to fill up with candy.
        When I was a kid, people did not give away store bought candy. In my neighborhood, the treats were homemade. There were pralines flavored with maple, chocolate, and rum; cookies in the shape of pumpkins sprinkled with orange sugar. A lady down the street named Miss Anna made homemade fudge and peanut brittle that she wrapped in waxed paper and tied with a black ribbon. And another lady across the street made candy apples. How good are those?
        After we hit every house in the neighborhood, I'd run in my room and empty all my goodies out of my pumpkin and onto my bed. For a moment there, I was in candy heaven!
        Now, as we approach Halloween 2017, I don't want you to be frightened by all those calories!  I want you to be prepared!  I want you to plan what you will eat, and I want you to plan your exercise.
        Of course, as you are planning your food, I have a recipe to share with you...

Trick Or Treat Caramel Popcorn

(for 4 people) 
  • 1  bag microwave lite popcorn
  • 2  Tb Karo dark syrup
  • 1  Tb dark brown sugar
  • 1  Tb "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter"
  • 1/2  tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4  tsp salt
  • 1/4  tsp baking soda
  • 1  cooking spray
  • 1/4  cup peanuts
  1. Microwave popcorn until popped.
  2. Mix together syrup, brown sugar, "I Can`t Believe It`s Not Butter," vanilla, baking soda, and salt. Microwave until margarine is melted. Stir together and microwave 1 minute more.
  3. On a baking sheet, lay out wax paper, spray with cooking spray, spread popcorn, and top with peanuts.
  4. Drizzle with syrup mixture and turn to coat. Let set about ½-2 hours. Place in a bowl and serve.
This recipe gives you the taste for the sweet caramel popcorn with peanuts without all the calories and fat of the typical recipes.
Nutritional Information:109 Calories, 3 gm Protein, 14 gm Carbohydrate, 5 gm Fat, 0 mg Cholesterol, 317 mg Sodium
FoodMover windows to close:1 Starch, 1 Fat
I hope you'll try my recipe, and I hope you are working hard on your plans to make the holidays healthy.  If you are a member of my clubhouse, now is the time you most need to use those tools, and post, and attend chats, and try some new recipes from our recipe archives.  Stay strong, and know I'm on your side!
I'll see you on the website...