Thursday, December 2, 2010

Pumpkin Pie

I made two of these for Thanksgiving. I got the recipe (as well as the pic I'm using for this post; it was so yummy we ate it all before we remembered to take a picture) from WeightWatchers.com. I subscribe to their site. However, thier version of this recipe called for butter and regular brown sugar for which I substituted applesauce and Splenda brownsugar mix. This made it significantly less points and it was still GREAT! Everyone at our dinner loved it and said they would have never known it was "healthy" if I hadn't told them. YAY! I think I will make it again at Christmas!


Ingredients
6 Lowfat graham cracker sheets
1/3 c. unsweetened applesauce
1 tbsp Splenda brown sugar mix
2 large egg whites
1 large egg
1/2 c. Splenda brown sugar mix
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 c. canned pumpkin
1/2 c. fat free evaporated milk
Lite whipped topping
Directions
Preheat oven to 350 F with rack placed in the center of the oven. Place graham crackers and 1 tbsp of the Splenda brownsugar blend into a food processor and process into crumbs. You can also put them into a plastic bag and crush them with a rolling pin if you don't have a food processor. Put crumbs into a bowl and add apple sauce mix until its a thick paste. Spread this into the botton of a greased (w/cooking spray) 9' pie tin. Mash the crust to cover the bottom and sides of the tin using a spoon, spatula or your hands. I found my hands worked best. Place in the refridgerator and chill for 30 min. Then place in the over and bake for 8-10 minutes or until it starts to get crust-like and bubble a bit. Remove from oven and let cool.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, use and electric mixer to whip egg whites until frothy. Fold in the egg, 1/2 c. Splenda brownsugar mix, salt, pumpkin pie spice, canned pumpkin and evaporated milk. Beat unitl smooth and pour in to the crust. Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Slice and serve with a dollop of lite whipped topping.
Notes
There are 3 WW PointsPlus for 1/8 of the pie. Delicious!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Couscous Kidney Bean Salad

I have been making big batches of this to eat for lunches through out the week lately. I'm very excited to share this great lunch I love so much!


Couscous Kidney Bean Salad
Ingredients
2- 12 oz. cans low sodium chicken broth (appx. 4 cups)
4 c. tricolor cousous
1- 12 oz. can kidney beans
1- 12 oz can cut baby corn
1/2 c. chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 c. chopped scallions
1 chopped red bell pepper
2 chopped roma tomatoes
3 tbsp. olive oil
3/4 c. lemon juice
1/4 c. red wine vinegar
2 tbsp. minced garlic
Directions
Bring chicken broth to a boil in a large pot. Add couscous to boiling broth and stir evenly until couscous is thoroughly saturated in broth. Stir in cut kidney beans, vegatables, garlic, lemon juice, oil, and vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste. Stir thoroughly and enjoy! Refridgerate to store.
Notes
You can add or substitute any other veggies you enjoy! There are 6 weight wathers ProPoints per 1 1/2 c. serving.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

De-light-ful Apple Crisp


This is an apple crisp recipe that I created by modifying and experimenting with healthy apple crisp recipes floating about the internet. I also came up with the adorable name. It's super healthy I put it into the weight watchers recipe application on line and it's only 2 WW points for a generous sized serving (this recipe makes 6 servings). It is also super delicious with a little bit of 1/2 fat Bryers all natural icecream. That makes the whole dessert 4 points... and TOTALLY WORTH IT!

De-light-ful Apple Crisp

Ingredients

8 small apples or 6 medium to large apples (Granny Smith are the best)
1/3 c whole wheat flour
1/3 c quick oats
1/8 c brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 c unsweetened applesauce
3 tbsp lemon juice

Directions

Preheat oven to 325. Peel and slice apples into wedges. Place in small baking dish. In a separate, small bowl mix flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Once mixed well, mash applesauce into the mixture with a fork until you have a somewhat moist, but still crumbly texture. Spread mixture over the apples evenly. Thoroughly spray or sprinkle lemon juice over the top of mixture and apples. Bake in oven for 30-35 mintues or until top is browned and apples are no longer crisp. Remove and let cool. Serve with vanilla icecream if desired.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust in the Bread Machine


A few weeks ago I discovered the joy of making my own pizza crust and we made amazing Chicken Spinach Pizzas. So good! I found a recipe from allrecipes.com and modified it to make it whole wheat and work in my bread machine. Easiest thing in the world. On allrecipes there are directions for doing this without a bread machine, so if you don't have one, you can go check those out.

Whole Wheat Pizza Crust

Ingredients
1 1/2 c. warm water
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
3 1/2 c. whole wheat bread flour (regular whole wheat flour is fine)
1 tbsp. active dry yeast

Directions

Put ingredients into bread machine starting with wet ingredients followed by dry. The trick is that after you add the flour, make a small intentation or well into the mound of flour and add yeast into the well, keeping it dry and apart from wet ingredients. Put on "dough" setting of your bread machine.

Preheat oven to 425. Once dough is done, take it from the machine and separate it onto two equal parts. Using a bit of extra flour and a rolling pin roll out your two pizza crusts to the size and shape you want. We make ours into two 16" round pizzas. Cover with your choice of sauce, cheese and toppings.

Bake for 17 to 20 minutes depending on thickness and how well done you like your pizza. I like mine a little crispy. Enjoy!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Whole Wheat and Oat Peach Cobbler

It's been a while since the last post, we traveled around for the summer and didn't do much cooking. In August I started my PhD program and Zac started his MFA. However, though we haven't been posting, we have been cooking some great, homemade, healthy recipes and will begin again to share them. I'll start with a great one we made last month. Peach Cobbler! I got the foundation for this recipe from www.peachcobbler.org/healthy-peach-cobbler-recipe.html However it was a little t00 organic-y for me. I don't have all those organic and soy ingredients so I modified for my very average cupboard, switched butter for applesauce, cut down on the massive ammounts of honey, and added some oats to boot! Here is what I came up with. It was super good!

Whole Wheat and Oat Peach Cobbler

Ingredients

6 c of sliced fresh or frozen peaches
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 1/2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c and 1 tbsp. of quick or traditional oats
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1 tbsp baking powder
1 c skim milk
1/4 c unsweetend applesauce
2 egg whites
1/2 c honey
1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions

Preheat oven to 375. Place sliced peaches in the bottom of a greased (pam prefferred) 9" x 13" glass or meatal pan. Pour/spread lemon juice evenly over peaches. In a small/medium bowl, combine dry ingredients (except for the extra tbsp of oats) and mix together well. In a larger bowl, combine wet ingredients and whisk. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir thoroughly. Spread this mixture over the peaches in the pan evenly. Sprinkle on the last tbsp of oats for a pretty look. Bake at 375 for 35-40 minutes.

Notes

We enjoy this with Bryers 1/2 fat vanilla ice cream and it's AMAZING!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry



We do this for a quick meal fairly often.

Chicken Vegetable Stir Fry

Ingredients:
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 bag Birds Eye Steam-Fresh Asian Medley Frozen Veggies (or any frozen stir fry medley that you like, I just know this is a good one- I add extra broccoli to my taste)
1 can pineapple chunks with 100% juice
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1/2 barbecue sauce
1/8 c honey

Directions:
Dice chicken in bite-sized cubes. Pour the pineapple juice from the can into a large skillet or wok and cook chicken thoroughly in the juice. When chicken is about half-way cooked, add frozen vegetables and pineapple. Once the vegetables and pineapple have cooked, cover in barbecue sauce, honey, and sesame seeds. Mix together in pan. Serve over brown rice. Top with sesame seeds to make it look pretty.

Note: The picture I used here is steak. You can pretty much use any meat you want.

Homemade Chicken Tamales

This recipe is a long time coming but it is worth it. I have made tamales twice this year and will do it again next time I get the chance. Be aware that this is a time-consuming, labor-intensive process. It is pretty much an all-day thing, but very rewarding. When I make them, I make A LOT so we can freeze them and have them for months, so it makes it worth it. A steamer is the best way to cook your tamales, however if you don't have one big enough, like me, I came up with an oven alternative that works well.

Homemade Chicken Tamales

Ingredients:

Filling-
8 large boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 16 oz jar of red or green salsa (not chunky)
1 10 oz can of red or green enchilada sauce
2 tbsp minced garlic
2 tsp black pepper

Dough-
8 c corn masa mix
2 tbsp garlic powder
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp black pepper
2 tsp salt
8 c low-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 c canola oil
1 large bag corn husks
(I can find both the masa mix and corn husks at my grocery store. If you can't, any specially mexican food store will be sure to have them.)

Directions:

Early in the morning, put thawed chicken breasts into a crock pot and cover with water. Cook on high for 5-6 hours or until the breasts start to break apart in the water. If you don't have a crock pot, you can also boil them for an hour or so. When chicken is very tender, drain water and rinse chicken with cool water. With forks, pull apart and shred the chicken transfering it to separate, large bowl. Add other filling ingredients to the bowl, mix well and set aside.

Before you start making your dough, put the corn husks in a very large bowl or pot and cover with water. Let stand. To make the dough, the mix the dry dough ingredients in a large bowl. Add chicken broth and oil slowly as you mix them with the masa. The consistency should be just wet enough so the dough doesn't break apart and ball up.



To form the tamales, lay a wet corn husk down on your working surface. I use a cutting board. Spread masa evenly over the husk about 1/4" thick with a large spoon. Spread a large spoonful of filling down the center of the masa as shown in the picture below.

Carefully roll the tamale up making sure the masa stays inside. If your corn husk doesn't cover it completely, you may want to cover it in another one. Repeat this process for all tamales. This recipe should make about 24 large tamales.

If you have a large steamer, place them in the steamer and cook for about an hour, checking on them every 20 minutes. To know if they are done, carefully unwrap one tamale (CAUTION: they are HOT!) and check to see if the dough is thoroughly cooked. Even large steamers will only fit about 12, so you may have to go through the process twice.

If you don't have a large steamer, you can use the oven carefully. Pre-heat oven to 375. Stack tamales on a baking sheet in a pyramid as shown below.

Thoroughly wet a large kitchen towel or piece of cotton cloth (I cut up one of Zac's old t-shirts and it worked really well- I have done it safely and successfully twice now). Cover the tamales the cloth, making sure to tuck the cloth under the tamales so it doesn't hang over the sides. Position your rack low in the oven and place the tray in the oven. Bake at 375 for one hour, keeping an eye on them every 20 min or so. Take tamales out of the oven after one hour, unwrap, and with tongs (CAUTION: Again, Tamales are HOT!) rotate the tamales in the pyramid so those on the outside are in the middle and visa-versa. Re-wet cloth and re-cover tamales. Place in the oven for another 60 minutes or until tamale dough is no longer wet and cooked thoroughly. Remove from oven and let cool for 20 min.


Store in husks until you are When you are ready to eat your tamales, separate them easily from the husks. They freeze very well. When thawing, steaming them in their husks for about 30 minutes is best. If you don't have a steamer at all, you can wrap it in it's husk in a wet paper towel and microwave it for 3 or 4 minutes. These are so wonderful, and though they do take a lot of time and effort, the process isn't too difficult. Enjoy!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Fresh Potato Fries


Fresh Potato Fries

Ingredients:

2 medium Russet potatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tbsp garlic powder
Seasonings of choice- I use Original and Garlic Herb Mrs. Dash

Directions:

Thinly slice potatoes into wedges and wash. Place potato wedges, olive oil, and seasonings in a large ziplock bag and shake until potatoes are evenly covered. Lay potatoes out in one layer on a baking sheet covered in tin foil and bake at 425 degrees until brown and slightly crispy. (Appx. 40 minutes.)

Salsa Verde


I've been looking for good salsa recipes
as an occasional change from my fresh
tomato salsa recipe. I took this recipe for
Salsa Verde from simplyrecipes.com. It
turned out really well. It also gave me a
chance to try out my new food processor.

Ingredients
6 tomatillos
1/2 medium white onion
1/2 bunch cilantro
1Tbsp lime juice
1/4 tsp sugar
3 jalepenos (seeded)

Process
Remove paper husks from tomatillos and rinse. Cut in half and place cut side down on afoil lined baking sheet. Place under broiler for 5-7 minutes until skin begins to blacken. Combine all ingredients including tomatillos in food processor. Chop all ingredients together to desired consistency. Salt to taste. Pour into a large skillet and sautee for 10 to 15 minutes (this is the secret step). Serve warm  or cool in  the refrigerator.

Turkey Cranburgers

I love this recipe. It's a healthy
(well, mostly) and delicious dinner option.
Some of the ingredients may sound a little
odd, but they work together really well.

Ingredients:

1 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dry oats
1 celery stalk (finely chopped)
2-3 Tblsp spicy brown mustard
Salt and pepper

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl
Form into burger patties and cook on skillet or grill
Cover patties with sauce
Serve on bun (we recently discovered Orowheat
thin hamburger buns. These work really well)
Serve with lettuce, tomatoes, and avocado

Notes:

We eat this with an amazing sauce that is semi-healthy. For the sauce: Mix together equal parts spicy brown mustard and apricot jam. It really makes the burger. Suggestion: Serve with Fresh Potato Fries.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Whole Grain Banana Blueberry Muffins


I had to go buy a muffin pan just for this recipe, but it's a FABULOUS muffin recipe. Not too difficult either. I started with a recipe from Green Lite Bites (a healthy food blog I love and highly recommend) then added blueberries and made a few other changes like including oats. They are divine.

Whole Grain Banana Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients:

2 c whole wheat flour
1/2 c quick oats
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 c. brown sugar
4 egg whites
2 large over-ripe bananas
1 c low fat vanilla yogurt
2 tbsps honey
1/2 c apple sauce
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 c fresh (or frozen) blueberries
1 tbsp whole wheat flour (extra or separate than from above)
2 tbsps quick oats (extra or separate than from above)

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Mix the 2 cups flour, 1/2 cup oats, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a mixing bowl. Set aside.

In a separate, larger bowl, mash up the bananas with a fork until they are a paste. Add the egg whites, yogurt, honey, molasses, applesauce, brown sugar, and almond extract. Whisk together until well blended.

Pour the dry mixture slowly into the wet mixture. Don't over mix.

Put blueberries into a small bowl. (If you are using frozen berries, DO NOT THAW.) Mix the berries in the extra tbsp of flour, covering them completely. Gently add the berries to the batter and fold in with a spatula. Do not mix heavily. This keeps the berries from turning the batter blue.

Spray a 12 muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Evenly distribute the batter into the muffing tin cups. The batter should be level with the pan. Sprinkle the tops with the extra 2 tbsp of quick oats. Bake for 18 to 20 min. Enjoy!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Garlic and Herb Chicken with Pasta

I apologize for the lapse in posts, we had family in town for two weeks and both Zac and I are working on our masters thesis projects. Also, I am training for a marathon, so the free time has been eaten up by other things and cooking and blogging about cooking fell low on the priority list. However, the other day I made a specialty of mine that I should post. My garlic and herb chicken. It's an easy recipe and best served with pasta; this time I served it with gnocchi (as shown in the picture) which is amazing. I tried to make my own gnocchi a few weeks back and it was a complete disaster! So I just bought this from the store, which was hard to find! We finally did find some at Glondo's, which is a specialty italian sausage store in Cle Elum. Yay! Anyway, here is the chicken recipe:

Garlic and Herb Chicken


Ingredients

4 chicken breasts
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp italian seasoning
1 tbsp Mrs. Dash garlic and herb seasoning (optional, but it's REALLY awesome)
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

If desired, chop chicken breasts into bite sized pieces, or cook as a whole breast. Pour olive oil into a large fryinig pan and place on the stove on medium heat. Add chicken to pan. If cooking as a whole breast, cover the chicken in 1/2 of the seasoning, fry for a few moments, then flip the chicken and cover the other side in the final 1/2 of seasoning. If cooking in pieces, add all seasoning, covering chicken thoroughly. Fry chicken in olive oil until cooked thoroughly and to desired brownness.

Notes:

So yummy! Serve over pasta, with sauce, or alone.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Healthy Cranberry Walnut Oatmeal Cookies

I have been craving oatmeal cookies but wanted to do a healthy version. I found a recipe on Mom's Who Think and made some changes adding dried cranberries and walnuts.

These are not flat, chewy oatmeal cookies, they are fluffy and cakey. They also cut out quite a bit of fat and calories by using Splenda and applesauce instead of sugar and oil.

Healthy Cranberry Walnut Oatmeal Cookies

Ingredients:

1/2 c Splenda/sugar/sweetener of choice
1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c unsalted butter
2 eggs
1/2 c applesauce
1/4 c skim or low-fat milk
2 c whole wheat flour
2 c quick rolled oats
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 c dried cranberries
1/2 c walnut pieces

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray. In a large bowl mix margarine, sugar, egg, applesauce, and milk. Mix with an electric mixer on medium until well blended (2 or 3 minutes.) Add flour, oats, baking soda, and cinnamon. Mix on low speed for one minute. Add cranberries and walnuts. Fold in with a spoon. Drop teaspoons full on to cookie sheet about 2 inched apart. Bake until lightly browned about 13-15 minutes.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cafe Rio-Inspired Mexican Pork Salad





This is our version of a Cafe Rio pork salad. It is NOT the exact Cafe Rio Recipe, but it is our own healthier and easier to make version. Also, it is REALLY YUMMY! We stared making it this year when we moved a 12-hour drive away from the nearest Cafe Rio (I got Zac hooked during the little time he was in Utah last year).

Now, this isn't a health food recipe. Especially the pork, as you will notice, has a lot of fat, sugar, and calories. But this recipe does cut down a lot from the original Cafe Rio recipe, especially in the dressing and rice.


Cafe Rio-Inspired Mexican Pork Salad

In a round tin pan, bake a tortilla sprinkled with cheese. When melted, add beans, cilantro rice, and sweet pork on top of tortilla. Fill tin with chopped red or green leaf lettuce. Top with cheese, sour cream, lime, guacamole, tortilla strips (we use crushed tortilla chips), salsa (see our recipe for fresh salsa) and creamy tomatillo dressing.


Sweet Pork

Ingredients:

One Medium to Large Pork Roast
1 c Coca-cola
1 c red enchilada sauce (ketchup or tomato sauce also works)
1 c light brown sugar
2 tbsps minced garlic
salt
pepper

Directions:

In the morning, rub the pork roast with salt pepper and garlic. Put in a crockpot with the 1c coke and cook 4-5 hours or until cooked through and starts falling apart. At this point, pull pork roast from crockpot to a baking sheet or cutting board. Pour out coke and wash out crockpot. With two forks, shred pork back into crockpot. Add the enchilada sauce and brown sugar to the pork. If you want it sweeter, you can add another 1/2 c. of brown sugar. Mix together and let warm in crockpot for another hour or so.


Cilantro Rice

Ingredients:

2 c brown rice
1 smal fistfull (appx. 1/4 c) of chopped fresh cilantro or 2 tbsp dried cilantro
3/4 c green enchilada sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp chili powder

Directions:

Cook brown rice according to package. When rice is thoroughly cooked, stir in enchilada sauce, cilantro, and spices.


Black Beans

Ingredients:

2 cans black beans
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp paprika

Directions:

Heat black beans in a pot on medium heat. Stir in seasonings.


Creamy Tomatillo Dressing

Ingredients:

1 c mayonnaise (I recommend using light)
1 c sour cream ( I recommend using light)
1/2 c milk ( I recommend using skim, it works just fine)
1 small fistful (appx. 1/4 c) of chopped fresh cilantro or 2 tbsp dried cilantro
3 tomatillos
3 seeded jalapeƱos
1 limes, juice of
1-2 tsp salt
2 garlic cloves
1 packet fat-free original ranch dip mix

Directions:

Place all ingredients in blender and mix until smooth. Refrigerate. You can also replace the cilantro with 1/4 cup of your favorite salsa. Leave seeds in 1 or all of the jalapeƱos to add spice. Pour over salad as dressing.



Notes:

I made these salads this week to take to a friend who just had a baby so we got to eat it as well.... and had enough for leftovers. This recipe will make about eight salads. It is also well worth all the trouble it is to make it. It's AMAZING!


Thursday, April 22, 2010

Strawberry Smoothie or Smoothie Pops

Zac came up with this simple recipe. It makes for a great smoothie, or popsicles if you freeze them.

Strawberry Smoothie or Smoothie Pops
Ingredients:

2 c milk
2 c frozen strawberries
1 large banana
1 c lowfat vanilla yogurt
3 tbsps honey
1 tsp vanilla
2 tbsps sugar/Splenda/sweetener of choice

Directions:

Blend all ingredients in blender until smooth. If you have a disabled blender, like we do, you can add the strawberries a bit at a time as you blend. If you want to make them into smoothie popsicles, pour them into popsicle forms or ice cube trays and freeze.


Strawberry Pancake Topping

This is the topping I use for pancakes. It is great!

Strawberry Pancake Topping

Ingredients:

2 c frozen strawberries
2 tbsps whole wheat flour
1 tsp sugar/splenda/ sweetner of choice

Directions:

Let strawberries thaw just a bit, then cut them into quarters. Place all ingredients in a saucepan and over medium heat. Let simmer. If it gets too thick, add a tbsp or two of water to desired consistency.


Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Whole Wheat Banana (Nut) Pankakes

I get some of my recipes and inspiration from different blogs and webistes. One of my favorites is www.greenlitebites.com . This morning I took her recipe for banana pancakes and mophed it a little bit into my own. I also took her recipe for blueberry topping and changed it into stawberry topping, since I only had frozen stawberries, not frozen blueberries. I will put this recipe in a separate post. I mention this blog because I always want to give credit where credit is due. Not all of these recipes are my own of course.

Whole Wheat Banana Pancakes

Ingredients:

1 large very ripe banna
3/4 c skim milk
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 c whole wheat flour
1/4 c whole oats
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 c walnuts or pecans (optional)

Directions:

Cut banana is into small pieces and, in a large bowl, mash them. If you like some chunks (like I do) leave some chunks; if you don't, mash the banana completely. Add milk, egg and banana and wisk. In a separate bowl, mix dry ingredients. Slowly wisk dry ingredients into wet ingredients. Cook on a griddle sprayed with non-stick spray at 325 degrees or on a skillet on medium heat.

Notes:

Makes about 6 meduim-sized pancakes.


* I took a pic, but can't get it off the camera right now so when I can or make them again I will post a picture.

Zac's Seriously Good, Seriously Fresh Salsa

Last fall, Zac spent about two days in our kitchen chopping, dicing, mixing, blending, and tasting different salsa recipes to create a perfect salsa. I think he totally found it. This is embarrassing, but over the winter, we made this at least once a week and always finished it off in less than three days. And it makes A LOT of salsa. You should really try it.

Zac's Seriously Good, Seriously Fresh Salsa
Ingredients

10 roma or 8 regular tomatoes
1 medium white onion
3 jalapenos
1 green bell pepper
1 bunch (about 2 fistfuls) cilantro
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 1/2 tbsps chili powder
2 tsps cumin
2 tsps paprika
1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1/2 c white vinegar
3 tbsps lime juice
salt

Directions
Finely dice all vegetables. When dicing, cut off cilantro stems and core the tomato and the jalapeno (you don't want the seeds of the jalapenos or the slimy guts of the tomato). First, mix all green and white veggies in bowl. Second, add tomatoes, seasonings, and vinegar, lime juice and lightly mix again. If you mix the tomatoes too much they get mushy. Salt to taste.

NotesYou can chop the onions and peppers in the food processor, but we chop everything else by hand while watching TV shows on Hulu. It takes quite a while, but it makes for the best consistency.

Spinach Chicken Salad

Spinach Chicken Salad

Ingredients

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
3 tbsps olive oil
Salt and Pepper
Garlic and Herb Mrs. Dash ( I use the Mrs. Dash varieties a lot. They are fabulous and salt-free!)
10 oz. bag of spinach, pre-cut and washed (though washing again is always recommended)
1/4 c. walnuts or almonds
1 c. green or red grapes
1/3 c. Feta, Bleu or Gorgonzola cheese
Raspberry Vinigarette dressing or other dressing of choice

Directions:

Cut breasts into cubes. Pan-fry chicken in the olive oil and season with the salt, pepper, and Mrs. Dash. Put all ingredients into a big bowl together. Pretty easy.

Notes:

As with any salad, you can add or take away any ingredients you like.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Roasted Red Potatoes


I threw together two simple recipes tonight, a spinach chicken salad and roasted red potatoes. I thought I may as well jot down what I put in my salads at least and how I do the potatoes. I have some good ideas and a few tricks to share. In the future, however we will try to put some more complex recipes on here so it's not boring. :)


Roasted Red Potatoes

6 medium red potatoes
3 tbsps olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees. Wash and cut potatoes into quarters. Mix the olive oil salt and pepper onto the potatoes in either a big bowl or a large zip-lock bag. Make sure coverage is even. Spread potatoes evenly onto a large cookie sheet covered in tinfoil. Put oven rack on the second lowest possible position. Roast in oven for 20 minutes then check potatoes. They may need 5-10 more minutes of roasting time. When cooked through, remove potatoes. Let cool for 2 to 3 minutes.

Note:

I know this is kind of a no-brainer, but it's easy, fast and SO yummy!


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sweet Potato Wedges

We like fries but try to do them with a healthy and creative spin. This is the recipe for our sweet potato wedges. They are pretty dang yummy and have all the nutrition benefits of a sweet potato. Win, win!

Sweet Potato Wedges

Ingredients:

2 medium sweet potatoes
2 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1/2 tsp Mrs. Dash Original Seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375. Dut the sweet potates into wedges. This can be a fairly difficult task as they are dense and hard to cut. Do your best. Put oil and seasonings into a gallon-sized freezer or strorage bag. Add potato wedges to bag, seal and mix the bag around so the potaoes get evenly seasoned and oiled. Place seasoned wedges on a large cookie sheet covered in tin foil. Bake in oven for 3o to 35 minutes or unitl cooked through and crisp. If they don't get crispy and are limp, you can turn the oven up to 400 for a mintue or two. This helps get them crispy but also can burn the edges. Remove and cool.

Notes:

Makes 2 or 3 servings depending on your serivng size. This makes 2 servings for us. We also do this exact recipe with regular potatoes and you could add or use any seasonings you want. With regular potatoes we throw in some garlic powder too. It's a fairly healthy way to have your french fry fix. :)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Baked Apples

,
Zac and I are trying to limit our desserts to once a week. But I have such a sweet tooth I have likes coming up with healthy fruit treats that replace dessert. One of my favorites is bakes apples. Here is the loose recipe. It can be modified to taste.

Baked Apples

Ingredients:

2 apples ( I prefer Gala)
4 tbsps lemon juice
2 tsps cinnamon
3 tbsps splenda/sugar/brown sugar or any other sweetener you prefer

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Peel and cut apples into slices. Place in a glass 9x9 cooking pan. Pour lemon juice over apples. Sprinkle cinnamon and sweetener or sugar on top. Bake for 35-40 minutes or until apples are soft. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes.

Notes:

I like to serve with frozen Sugar Free Cool Whip when we are staying light or vanilla ice cream when we splurge. Really yummy and still healthy. You can really change the amount of any of the ingredients to fit your taste. Also, adding walnuts, pecans, rasins, or crasins is yummy.