Are you, like me, always on the lookout for tasty treats that are reasonably healthy and lo-cal? As a member of the metabolism-is-changing-as-I-am-aging Baby Boomers Generation, I am constantly on the lookout for that.
Thanks to a happy mistake, I have a new goodie for us. While waiting for my senior mom to do some errands, I popped into one of my favorite restaurants, Panera Bread. I love them because they have such healthy and yummily delicious soups, sandwiches, and breads. When my kids were young, I regularly used some favorite homemade wheat bread recipes and my Bosch to whip up several loaves of homemade wheat bread. They were good!
Now that I stay so busy, though, I really appreciate Panera Bread as their bread is almost as good as my homemade bread was. 🙂 Not only that, they are a great place for me to get some work done while running errands and staying busy with the Sandwich Generation issues I constantly juggle.
I ordered the Pesto Vegetable Soup in a bread bowl. (I know what you’re thinking. That bread bowl adds tons of calories! It does too. But I only eat the top of it, so I stay within the calorie count of about 160 for my soup. YAY!) I have to confess, as much as I love Panera, I was a bit disappointed when they changed their Vegetable soup recipe a few months ago. I loved their old one and I haven’t been as enthused about this new one. I love Pesto sauce by itself, but I wasn’t that crazy about it in the vegetable soup. I still order it, though, on days when I want an easy-on-the-tummy soup, which was why I ordered it on this particular day.
When they buzzed me to let me know it was ready, I went to pick it up. I was thrilled when she said, “Oh, wait a minute. I forgot to add the Pesto.” My first reaction was to say, “Oh, don’t put it on!” My second reaction was to “hedge my bets" – in case it was better with the pesto than without. So I added, “Please just put it on the side.”
Talk about a great mistake! The soup was much more to my taste without the pesto in it. AND with the Pesto on the side, I was able to enjoy a treat I used to love – use the pesto sauce as a bread dip! YUMMY!
It was a small enough portion, it shouldn't be too high in calories and they are already included in the calorie count Panera has on their menu boards. A delicious treat and yummy lunch!
Today I went back with my senior mom and purposely ordered the Pesto Vegetable soup with the pesto on the side. They were happy to do it and it tasted just as yummy as the last time. I must say that was definitely a delightful mistake and gift from God to this member of the Sandwich Generation. If you’re looking for a slightly different lunch treat or missing the old vegetable soup, as well, give it a try and let me know what you think. 🙂