March 14th, 2007

cooking

Today's lunch

Today's lunch is WeightWatchers Smart Ones Santa Fe Style Rice & Beans



Calories: 310
Fat: 7 grams (3 saturated)
Carbs: 51g
Protein: 10g

Don't be fooled-- even though this entree doesn't mention meat, it's not fit for vegetarians. Ingredients include gelatin, dried chicken broth, chicken fat and dried chicken meat.

Of all the ingredients, the most notable is sodium-- it gives you 660mg, a whopping 27% of your daily value. To be honest, I'm having a bit of a problem tolerating all this salt... I've yet to find a frozen meal that DOESN'T load up on salt, though. In comparison to other frozen meals, it rates a bit above average on the salt scale.

Other ingredients seem pretty innocuous, with one notable exception: Despite the claim of 0 Trans Fat on the nutrition label, it does contain partially-hydrogenated soybean oil (a trans fatty acid). Foods that claim to have zero trans fat, when they really have small amounts that fall below the reportable threshold, are a pet peeve of mine.

Like every (I don't recall an exception, anyway) other Smart Ones I've tried, it's 3 minutes in the micro, stir, give it another minute (it's bizarre how everything cooks with the same directions!). Once cooked, it looks similar to the photo on the package, but with everything mixed together.

It's pretty self-explanatory: rice, beans, cheese... as well as a few kernels of corn and tiny pieces of zucchini.

This is remarkably cheesy, and rather tasty. Filling, too. I'd give it 3/5. It would easily have scored a 4 if it did not contain any trans fat, and if the sodium content were lower.

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tech questions on upgrading system

I'm noodling getting a new motherboard and cpu.

Now, here's my quandry... I have two component parts, and I need to decide if they're worth keeping...

Winfast A250 Ti-4600
This was a great card when I bought it-- it's STILL a great card. Is it good enough to warrant the purchase of a board with AGP instead of PCIexpress?

Creative Audigy 2ZS Platinum
While this piece of hardware is an evil little monster and absolutely does NOT play nice with others, it does have front inputs, and gives stillar performance once tamed. I'm hoping a new mobo might make it happier.

I'd also like to keep my Enermax Noisetaker II 480W PS if at all possible.

I'm considering moving from Athlon to Pentium because of heat issues in the room, but I understand that Athlons run a lot cooler than they once did. I'm also considering dual-core.

Any words of wisdom from the peanut gallery?