11/21/09

Deviled eggs & Walnut, Raisin and Cranberry squares

Deviled Eggs

8 eggs
1 tbsp mustard (I recommend a spicy mustard or horseradish mustard)
1 tbsp fat-free sour cream
1-2 tsp paprika
1 cup tofu (crumbled)
2 tbsp fresh chopped chives
1-2 tsp Pepper
Optional: Celery

1. Hard-boil 8 eggs. In a large saucepan, I recommend cooking eggs on high, in cold water, with the water covering the eggs by about 1-2 inches. When water is boiling, turn off heat, remove from hot burner and cover. Let eggs cook for 10-12 minutes.
2. While eggs are cooking, crumble tofu in a bowl and mash with a fork. Add chives, sour cream, paprika, mustard and pepper. Combine well with fork.
3. When eggs are finished cooking, transfer to bowl and run cold water over eggs while peeling.
4. On a large cutting board, gently cut eggs in half. Remove yokes.
5. Add 3 yokes to tofu mixture and mix with fork. Taste to see if you need more pepper or paprika.
6. Scoop about a tbsp of tofu mixture into each egg.
7. For garnish as a side dish, chop celery and sprinkle over eggs. If using eggs as an appetizer, julienee (matchstick-type cutting) celery to show off your cooking/cutting skills :)









Walnut, Raisin and Cranberry squares (or muffins)


1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup soy flour
1/2 cup oats
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 whole egg + 1 egg white
1 cup skim milk
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tbsp. smart balance butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. grated orange zest
2 cups chopped cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raisins

1. Preheat over to 375-degrees. Spray cooking sheet or muffin tin with butter non-stick spray.
2. Combine whole wheat flour, soy flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon in large bowl.
3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together eggs (1 whole egg and 1 egg white), skim milk, brown sugar, butter (soft), oil and vanilla.
4. Make a whole in the center of the dry mixture and pour in the wet ingredients. Stir until ingredients are well-combined.
5. Add orange zest, chopped cranberries, walnuts and raisins and stir a few strokes until combined.
6. Add batter to pan (about 1 inch tall). If more than 1 inch, use batter for another cooking pan. If making muffins, use an ice cream scoop to fill muffins 3/4ths full.
7. For muffins, cook 15-17 minutes or until top of muffin starts to firm or gets golden brown. For squares, cook for 15-20 minutes until top of the mixture is slightly golden brown.



11/20/09

Recipe makeover...here's your grocery list

If you haven't heard it already, there is a big nutrition-related news story regarding Movie popcorn. Surprisingly, it is bad for you.

Movie Popcorn

Um, sorry MSNBC.com, but this news is old news. The sad part is that popcorn used to be bad for you and now it is really bad for you.
If you are trying to lose weight or live a healthy lifestyle, you are doomed. There is no point trying to lose weight because food manufactures, restaurants, vending machines, fast food facilities and even health-food stores are providing you (the consumer) unhealthy food options that are just too good to resist. And even if you try to resist them and choose a healthier option, your healthy option is still high calorie, high fat, high sugar or high in fake ingredients.
Perhaps I am taking this to the extreme but don't you feel like you are being sabotaged with your weight loss journey? Statistics are telling Americans how fat (ouch, I just hate that word-let's use obese and overweight) but at every food aisle in the grocery store there is an abundance of unhealthy food options. The portions are getting bigger at restaurants and you have no idea what you are eating or how many calories you are eating. Why don't we have nutrition and calorie guides at restaurants and fast foods? You order a smoothie post-workout at the local smoothie shop and you may as well have eaten a candy bar w/ a shot of sugar. Why aren't companies providing healthy options for athletes and fitness enthusiasts? Who really needs a 800 calorie post-workout smoothie and why are there 50+ grams sugar in a post-workout recovery shake? Your children can choose from ranch dressing or blue cheese with their fried chicken wings at school and their salads are old iceburg lettuce and a few carrot sticks...but of course, with a side of ranch dressing. Why aren't there apples and oranges at the check-out counter instead of candy bars and candy? And, when you try to buy healthy foods for the family you are forced to spend double of your grocery budget compared to processed, packaged and frozen foods which are cheap, easy and quick.
I don't want to get carried away on this blog post about what we can do to eat healthier in a country which is doing a lot of wrong things to help people lose weight (although there is a lot of progress in food manufactures and regulations helping people lose weight)....although I would love to just write and write and write about this topic.
I find it hard to believe that many people don't realize what they are consuming when they eat. I know it is hard to be the one in the grocery store reading food labels (because that isn't the norm) but it is worth every minute you spend comparing your food options. And if your co-workers or friends make fun of you for logging your foods during the day, tell them they can contact me and I'll show them the research that logging foods is one of the most beneficial methods of sticking to a weight loss/maintenance journey.
There are countless websites and books devoted to calories in food, restaurants and fast food, yet American's want to "guesstimate" calories when making the healthiest option. If they aren't guessing calories then they are justifying the reason's for eating x-amount of calories. Furthermore, with foods claiming to be "low fat" or "no sugar added" it is easy to think you are doing great with your weight loss journey, yet see or feel no noticeable progress.
My mission right now, with the Holiday season quickly approaching, is to teach you how to appreciate the value of cooking and preparing your own meals. Guess what..you burn calories when cooking! I know it isn't like the 30 min. interval run on the treadmill but when American's need to move more, short bouts of exercise count..and so do activities around the house.
It is important to recognize what you are eating. If you are eating green bean casserole, try to figure out how many calories are in your portion. You don't have to avoid the casserole, just factor in those calories to the sum calories for your meal. If you want a piece of pie, how about you make the pie. Then you will know exactly what you are eating and how much of it you'd like to eat. There is no reason to feel guilty, ashamed or defeated when it comes to eating healthy. And yes, eating an occasional desert is fine on your weight loss/health journey.
This morning at swim practice a wonderful lady who swims in the other lane came up to me and said "Marni, do you ever just let loose with your healthy eating?" I didn't even have to think about it..."Nope".
To me, this is how I choose to eat for the rest of my life. There is nothing temporary about my eating and I hope with time, that I can become even more healthy and nutritious with my eating habits. If I want something sweet, I eat it. I know when to eat it, how much to it and I enjoy every bite. I don't fear food for it gives me fuel. I absolutely love to exercise and move my body and without the right types of fuel, I can't do what I love to do. With these recipe makeovers, I hope you can start to have a good relationship with food and understand that you can enjoy a little of everything and not gain weight...especially in one night. However, if you have an unhealthy relationship with food on a daily basis, you will live day after day wondering when you will ever lose weight.
For all my blog readers, I am going to make over several recipes for you to use on a daily basis or for Thanksgiving.
Enjoy!!
Here's the grocery list...tomorrow comes the recipe w/ pics :)

Deviled eggs
8 eggs
1 cup Tofu (not extra firm)
2 tsp. Mustard (spicy or horseradish is recommended)
Paprika
Pepper
1 tbsp. Fat-free sour cream
2 tbsp. Fresh chives


Walnut, Raisin and Cranberry Squares or Muffins

1 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup soy flour
1/2 cup oats
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 egg + 1 egg white
1 cup skim milk
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tbsp. smart balance butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. grated orange zest
2 cups chopped cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup raisins

11/19/09

Food Swap

With the holidays coming up, I can see why there is an abundance of commercials, magazine articles, newspaper articles, television spotlights and internet searches for
1) weight loss
2) nutrition
3) fitness
or
4) all of the above
Oh and how can I forget...the google search for "how to lose weight fast".

On a positive note, the holidays may be a great trigger for people to start a healthy and realistic weight loss program. Then again, they may trigger a need to begin a quick, unhealthy and do-anything at any cost, to lose weight fast. I find that athletes have a similar mentality for weight loss when racing season approaches. Come the spring or early summer, with an A-race in 8-12 weeks, there is a strong desire to lean-up or focus on a more balanced diet to support training. Then again, when a race approaches in 3-4 weeks, there is a strong desire to squeeze in as much training as possible, train for quantity in order to burn calories, decrease calories to create a large caloric deficit and hope that by race day that size "x" tri-suit will look sexy on a ripped or lean body.
I always use the saying "you can't train for a marathon overnight, so how you can you expect to change all nutrition habits overnight???"

As you can tell from my recipe blog posts, I love re-creating recipes and finding healthy alternatives to keep flavor and satisfaction when eating the meal.
There is a lot that goes into weight loss, especially when it comes to changing the way you eat. It is human nature to fear starvation and for Americans, and our rather-increasing rate of overweight and obesity, we are programmed to eat everything in sight...and then some more. I could easily say "stop eating that much" but no one likes to feel hungry..myself included!
If you are an athlete, you likely fear not having enough energy for workouts. If you are human, you just don't want to feel hungry for the rest of your life...especially if you think that they only way to weight loss is to feel hungry.
Well, I am not a believer in feeling starved. However, I do think it is important that a person focuses on the difference between boredom, starvation, hunger, an empty stomach, low blood sugar or an imbalance of macronutrients and meals and snacks. If you can identify why you are eating (or need to eat), then it will be a lot easier to understand what you need to eat and how much of it to eat.
If you have a long term goal weight (it must be realistic) I suggest learning how to swap out some of your heart-unhealthy foods for heart-healthy foods. If you can think of 2-3 times during the day when you are eating more food (calories) than you should, then this could be a great place to start. If you are eating a bowl of cereal at 8pm every evening, an hour after dinner, start by taking a walk or distracting yourself when 8pm comes around.
But what about during the day when you used to eat a heavy sandwich for lunch and now you just eat a salad. Or, you use to eat a cliff bar every afternoon and now you eat a 90-calorie special K bar. In these instances, you are once again cutting out a major amount of calories in your daily diet and you WILL lose weight.
Do you think that these strategies are really effective? Although these drastic measures may provide quick weight loss, they are likely leaving you with little variety in the diet and the tendency to feel deprived and well, hungry and bored.
Let's say you are a cereal eater...here comes a food swap. Rather than the 300 calorie bowl of cereal w/ milk, have an apple or a piece of cheese. This is just one example, but by swapping a high-calorie food/snack/meal for a lower calorie snack, you WILL lose weight and you are still enjoying your 8pm snack, but with lower calories.
If you are a heavy lunch or dinner eater, how about cutting back on your portions and swapping 1/2 your dish for nutrient-dense foods such as fruits and veggies. The key for weight loss (especially if you are an athlete) isn't necessarily about reducing your daily caloric intake by 500 calories in order to give yourself a healthy 1-2 lb weight loss/week. Competitive athlete or fitness enthusiast, you need to learn where to cut back on calories in order to give yourself a healthy caloric deficit, but at the same time, add in healthy nutrients in order to feel satisfied at your meal.
Here are a few of my favorite food swaps:
-1 slice whole grain bread with 1 tbsp Pb and 1 tbsp jelly and 1/2 ripe banana rather than 2 slices of bread. For the calories of the other slice of bread, you can add in more potassium (similar amount of fiber) in the diet w/ the same amount of calories with the banana. Even better, swap a high calorie piece of bread for a lower calorie whole-grain slice of bread. You have now saved yourself even more calories and you are still able to enjoy your PB and jelly sandwich! Also, eat the open face sandwich with a fork. By taking more chews you are likely fill up with more smaller bites (don't forget your water!) as you eat your banana.
-1/2 cup cereal w/ 4 ounces low fat yogurt rather than 1 cup cereal and 8 ounces skim milk. You can still enjoy your crunchy cereal but you are able to control your intake of cereal with yogurt rather than milk.
-1 granola bar (around 120-160 calories) w/ medium apple (sliced) and 4 almonds rather than a cliff bar (or any sports bar/protein bar). Sure, the cliff bar may be more filling (and tasty) than the granola bar. Sure, the granola bar and apple may come out to more calories than the cliff bar itself. However, hopefully you will find yourself enjoying snack time (and a longer snack time) due to more food options when you snack. More so, fruits and veggies provide fiber and water for filling (nutrient dense as opposed to energy dense). Although you may be able to cut calories by eating a 90-calorie granola bar rather than 200 calories worth of fruit, you will likely fill up on fruit (why not add a piece of cheese for a little fat and protein?) to keep you satisfied between meals.
-1 tbsp olive oil in your dinner meal rather than 2 tbsp olive oil or lemon juice instead of salad dressing. Although the olive oil is a healthy fat, you can drastically cut calories by reducing your intake of toppings, condiments and sauces.
-1 Hershey kiss after dinner rather than a piece of toast w/ PB, 10 minutes before bed. Sometimes it takes a little sweet treat to satisfy a craving. Plus, if you know where and when to swap foods (ex. reducing 1 tbsp olive oil from your dinner meal) you are allowing yourself much more freedom with your healthy choices in your weight loss journey.

Do you have any food swaps that have helped you lose weight? Was there a food that you were eating in high portions on a daily basis, but now you eat a different food (or a different version of that food) in order to feel satisfied? Are you now inspired to swap foods in your diet? If so, what is your swap?

My #1 piece of advice for this post..
If you are starting a weight loss journey (first time or for the 20th time) and want it to last, don't eliminate food...replace with a healthy food.
If you are consuming more calories than necessary in your daily diet, it is likely that you need to reduce your portions and snack sizes, in order to reduce total calories. However, if you feel that you are doing a lot of great things with your weight loss (or management) but you are still feeling hungry, without energy and/or deprived, focus on mixing and matching your foods so that you are including veggies, fruit, protein, complex carbs and healthy fats with your meals and snacks. Cutting back on calories doesn't ensure that you will be able to maintain your weight, even if at first, you were able to lose weight. You need to learn how to eat balanced and healthy meals and snacks to support your active and healthy lifestyle. Yes-this will take practice but since we all love to eat, why not spend the next few weeks finding what works for you and your workout routine.

11/18/09

Please vote!

To all my blog readers, I really appreciate your time for checking in on my blog on a daily basis. There are lots of exceptional blogs out there, in addition to a lot of nutrition and exercise-related blogs. Thanks for reading my thoughts on a daily basis.
If you want to vote for me for "People's Health Blogger Award" on wellsphere, you can click on the badge on the right of my blog page.
Thanks!

11/17/09

Horrible 100 event



It's not as horrible as it sounds. Well, maybe if you are from Florida, those horrible hills may cause some altitude shock :)

I wasn't really looking forward to this event because it has been over a month since 6-gap and that event really did a number on me. I am still having nightmares of my smallest chain ring helping me move a speedy 5 mph up the mountains. Karel kept telling me that I can easily ride 100 miles and as long as I stay on a wheel and stick with a group, this event will be really enjoyable for me.
This was the 2nd time I have done this event (first time in 2007) but the first time I did the 100 mile event, rather than the 70 mile event.

After dropping off Campy at bman's, I picked up Karel at work and at 4pm we made our 2 1/2 hour drive to Clermont Florida. If you haven't been to Clermont, the National Training Center is located there and many professional triathletes travel to Clermont for actual hill training in Florida.

When we arrived at the Cycling Hub bike store, we were impressed with the organization of packet pick-up, as well as the yummy selection of food. This year was the 30th anniversary of the Horrible 100 and for the anniversary there was a catered happy hour with wine, beer and healthy appetizers. After our pre-dinner snack, we headed to Outback for my favorite pre-race meal. Yum!

We checked into the hotel and before we knew it, it was 5:45am on sun morning.
A few of our Gearlink friends from Clearwater were staying at our hotel so it was great to eat a light breakfast with them and like always, enjoy a few laughs together. Back to room to change and we headed to Waterfront park.

I couldn't believe the number of riders for this event. There are 3 rides (35, 70 and 100 mile) for this event, in addition to a fun family ride. The 100 mile ride started at 8am and we headed over to the event start around 7:45am. It seems as though everyone knows Karel so he was saying a lot of hello's as I was preparing myself for this 100 mile ride.

The ride started like a normal group event....chaos among 3000 riders (actually I think there was around 1000-1500 for the 100 mile ride). No surprise, the ride started fast and there was a few crashes and falls with the tightness of everyone riding so close to one another. Without even trying, I stayed toward the back because my wheel doesn't like to be that close to people I don't know. However, I still had Karel in my head telling me to stay on a wheel.
After the first few climbs, I began to notice how many people didn't know how to change gears. There was a lot of snapping of gears and people falling over due to chains slipping off chain rings. Although I have had a few instances where I was not prepared for a climb and I was careless with my gears, I was successful in all of my changing of gears during this ride..and this helped me a lot in this event.

I managed to stay with a group of around 15-20 for the first 30 miles of the ride and the course was not too hard. There were a few bumps here and there but overall, we were just riding fast and you could hardly feel any climbs. When we got to "the wall" I got dropped. Ughh, I was so upset. The climb comes right after a sharp right hand turn and there was a guy in front of me who was struggling with his gears. I got dropped and was unable to catch back up by the time I got to the top of the short, but steep, climb. Besides that climb, I didn't find any of the climbs challenging, but I knew the ride really started around mile 70. After I got dropped I thought to myself, there is NO WAY I am going to ride the last 70 miles by myself! I rode up to another guy on the course who got dropped from this group and we took turns pulling each other to try to catch up. Finally, a group of around 10-15 came up behind us and I was relieved to see some wheels to help me out for the remainder of the ride. I knew we had a long way to go but this group was fast, but doable. There wasn't really any organization to the group but we were passing people on the course and it was beginning to be a lot of fun to just ride fast and work on my skills (especially changing gears and handling skills).

Around mile 60 I started to get a little bored. Ok, 2 more hours to go..no big deal. However, I kept reminding myself that mile 70 brings a few tough climbs and mile 80 is the well-known "sugarloaf" mountain.
I was holding on to about 1/2 of 1 of my 2 water bottles. in case the group decided to pass the 4th rest stop at mile 70. Luckily, they stopped and I was in need of some fluid. If the group didn't stop I would have kept going because there was no way I was riding the last 30 miles alone.
I refilled my bottles and to my surprise, there was Karel calling my name.
He got a flat around mile 50 and after changing it, the front group was far gone and he couldn't catch up. He waited for me at the rest stop, hoping that I would stop and we could ride together.
This was the best news ever because I was ready for a change in the ride. Although I knew our pace would be a bit slower than riding with the group (although, not that much slower, Karel was still holding around 23mph) my power had been really low because of the group effort. Even though this is a group event and a fun ride, I wanted to have some fun with Karel and he wanted to have some fun pulling me the rest of the ride.
I had to take my time up the first section of big climbs before Sugarloaf because I didn't want to toast myself. I was really taking advantage of the downhills and rather than just coasting down hill, I was pedaling in my biggest gear to get some momentum up the climbs.
Finally..mile 80 came and as we made a right hand turn onto Sugarloaf mountain Karel was telling me stories of his races here. Once he did a time trial down and up sugarloaf as well as a road race course which included loops up sugarloaf. I love when he tells me stories because it helps me from complaining and thinking negative thoughts. However, I had my own stories in my head this time around and while climbing sugarloaf I kept thinking of my 45 min - 1 hour climbs in Dahlonega Ga. Ok-so sugarloaf wasn't as bad as I thought and before I knew it I was at the top and ready to keep on pushing.

The rest of the ride was fast and Karel wanted us to pass as many guys as we could on the course. In all seriousness, it was just fun and I was smiling the whole time. We would pass a group of guys and Karel would turn to me and say "you dropped them babe". I was just thinking to myself "No babe, you dropped them. I am just trying to not get dropped my husband who is riding super strong and fast".

The last 10 miles of the ride are just brutal. I was still feeling strong and ready to push but the ride never ends. The course takes you through a few neighborhoods with super steep (but short) climbs which just keep coming and coming. 5 miles to go and you are still wondering how many more climbs your quads can survive to get back to Waterfront park. I felt strong throughout the entire ride but I give a lot of thanks to the groups I was riding with and of course, my super strong and fast hubby who makes being on our bikes so much fun. There was no complaining by me on Sun and I had a blast!

We finally made it back to the finish and Karel let me beat him to the line. I had a best time for 100 miles and unofficially finished in 5 hours and 6 minutes. Although I beat Karel to the line, his overall time was 20-25 minutes faster than me due to his flat tire and long rest stop to wait for me:)

The best part of the ride was the post-event food. There was no pizza, cookies or pretzels. We are talking REAL healthy food. Although I was really looking forward to a slice of pizza I recovered really well with fresh and steamed veggies, a vegetarian burger and veggie chips. Karel had fish with his veggies.

If you are ever looking for a challenging and well-organized event, I really recommend the Horrible 100. I can't wait until next year and hopefully I will be able to ride with Karel for the entire 100 miles.

......so, as I write about the event and how great I felt during the ride, I was totally toasted on Sun evening. Mon was a DAY OFF from exercise and Karel and I (and campy) did yoga after we slept in until 6:30am. However, this event was a "fun" ride and another event checked off my bucket list.

11/16/09

Deli-style panini's

One of our favorite wedding gifts was our panini maker. I must say it is getting great use by Karel and me. Aside from the toasted-bread smell in our kitchen and the sounds of sizzling veggies or meat, the panini maker turns your boring toasted sandwich into a deli masterpiece. Don't believe me??? ....time to get your own griddler.
Here is the one that we have but there are many on the market.

Cuisinart GR4 Griddler Grill

Another great thing about the panini maker is that you can make sandwiches really quickly. The same time it takes you to toast bread in the toaster, you can turn on the griddler, prepare your stuffings for your sandwich and by the time you clean up and put everything away, your sandwich is hot and ready.

The first sandwich I have is a ham, egg and cheese sandwich that I made for Karel and one of his employees. Karel needed a truck and someone to help him move something heavy into our place so I decided to feed the boys something yummy and healthy. I was in a creative cooking mood so I made some sweet potato thins (to cook while I made the panini's) and cut up some celery for some extra crunch.


Ham, Egg and Cheese sandwich

1-2 slices deli lean ham
1 egg + 1/8 cup skim milk (seasoned with pepper, optional 1-2 tsp hot sauce)
1 slice provolone cheese
1 large kale leaf
4 slices vine tomato
5 thin slices of green pepper
6 small jalapeno rings
1/2 tbsp hummus

1. Turn on panini maker to high.
2. In a microwave dish sprayed with 2 squirts non-stick spray (or spray butter) cook 1 egg, mixed with skim milk and scrambled for 1 minute. Stir and cook additional 15 sec. Continue cooking for 15 sec. until egg is not runny. Season with a little pepper and optional hot sauce.
3. On a french bread baguette/roll, place egg on bread. Lay jalepenos, peppers and tomato on egg. Top with ham slices (omit for vegetarian sandwich) and cheese. Finish with lettuce leaf. Cover with the top of your bread, spread with hummus.
4. Cook on panini maker for 4-5 minutes. When you start to smell the panini, it is less than a minute from being ready.
5. If you are taking your panini to work for lunch, remove panini with flat spatula and wrap in tinfoil.






Sweet potato thins

1 large sweet potato
Cayenne pepper
Cinnamon
1/2 tbsp olive oil

1. Pre-heat oven to 400-degrees.
2. Thinly slice sweet potato and lay slices on cooking sheet, lined with tinfoil.
3. Lightly coat sweet potatoes with olive oil (I suggest using a tsp and spreading a little olive oil on each sweet potato rather than trying to drizzle olive oil on the entire cooking sheet).
4. Top 1/2 sweet potato thins with a dash or two of cayenne pepper (on each potato) and the other half with cinnamon.
5. Cook for 15-20 minutes. When potato thins begin to look toasted, switch your burner to broil for an additional 5 minutes.
*The cinnamon sweet potato crisps are great for desert with a drizzle of honey or with a side of fat-free vanilla or plain yogurt.


Grilled Chicken and rice Panini

2 slices thin rye bread
3 ounces chicken breast
2 tsp olive oil
1 slice mozzarella cheese
3-4 tbsp cooked rice
1 tbsp roasted pepper hummus
3 large slices of roma tomatoe
2 leafs romaine lettuce (or any dark green)
4 thin slices of green pepper

1. In a small non-stick skillet, cook chicken and olive oil. Add your choice of seasonings such as pepper, cayenne, lemon seasoning, Tabasco (2 tsp) or low sodium soy sauce (2 tsp). Cook until tender and golden brown.
2. Turn on panini maker to high.
3. On each slice of rye bread, spread 1/2 tbsp hummus. On bottom bread slice, lay tomato on bread and follow with lettuce.
4. Follow with cheese slice.
5. When chicken is finished cooking, cut into strips and place strips on bread (you may have leftovers. I suggest serving with rice and beans in another meal).
6. On top layer of bread (which is spread with hummus), press rice onto bread and cover sandwich.
7. Cook in panini maker for 4-5 minutes.