Sunday, November 23, 2008

Skinny General Tso's Chicken

Wow, I really liked this recipe! I got it from this month's Self magazine. One thing I like is that you can make it as spicy or mild as you want. I even used Cayenne powder instead of red pepper flakes and it came out great.

Skinny General Tso's Chicken
1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 tsp finely chopped garlic
1 tsp finely chopped ginger (I recommend grating it, its the easiest way to get the pieces small enough)
1 tsp balsamic vinager
2 tsp cornstarch (divided)
1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1/2 cup thinly sliced onion
Mix chicken, garlic, ginger, balsamic vinager, and 1 tsp cornstarch in a bowl. Cover and refrigerate about 20 minutes. Whisk broth, soy sauce, sugar, pepper flakes, and remaining 1 tsp cornstarch in a bowl until smooth. Coat a small skillet w/ sesame oil over medium-high heat. Cook onion until it browns lightly, 2 to 3 minutes. Slowly add chicken and cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken browns, 4 t0 5 minutes. Add broth mixture and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring constantly until sauce thickens, about 1 minute.
Serving suggestions: serve w/ brown rice and side salad.
**This really only makes enough for 1 person so if making for more people, recipe would need to be adjusted

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Microwave Pancakes

This is something I make at times when I want pancakes for breakfast. Since I live alone and don't really want to go through all the hassle.

1 cup Bisquick
3/4 cup skim milk
1/4 cup Egg beaters (or 1 egg)

Make batter in microwave safe bowl. Drizzle syrup into batter before microwaving. Microwave batter ~3min or until done.

There you go...pancakes in less than 5 minutes!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cranberry Salad

Sorry for the minimal posts this month. I have been pretty busy so I haven't been trying as many new recipes and I haven't received any posts from others this month. Here's a recipe that's perfect for the holidays!

Cranberry Salad
1 package fresh cranberries (12oz)
1 can (15oz) of crushed pineapple, drained (or use frozen pineapple for a slightly healthier version and crush it yourself)
1 container (16oz) of fat free Cool Whip

1. Chop finely or grind the cranberries in a food processor or blender. Then add one cup of sugar (or sugar substitute in equivalent amount). Stir thoroughly, cover, and let sit in the fridge overnight.
2. The next day add the pineapple and fold in the container of whipped topping. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. This may also be frozen until ready to use, let thaw at room temp for about 15-20min before serving.

The above recipe is the version I like but if you're allergic or not a pineapple person here is the alternate version.

Alternate Cranberry Salad
1. Step one is the same as above
2. The next day add 3 mashed bananas, 1 cup finely chopped pecans, and whipped topping

Friday, November 14, 2008

Produce in season near you!

An easy way to save money, eat fresh and delicious, and be earth friendly is to eat local and know what is in season.

Here's a website to help!

Reducing Calories - Quick Substitutions

Instead Of.................Choose…

Dairy Aisle
2 eggs.................2 egg whites or ½ cup (C) egg substitute
Butter or margarine.................Low-fat margarine (may need to add more flour when baking)
Regular cheddar cheese, whole-fat mozzarella cheese, cream cheese.................2% cheddar cheese, part skim mozzarella cheese, Neufchâtel cheese
Mayonnaise or sour cream.................Low-fat plain yogurt or low-fat versions
Whipped cream.................Chilled and whipped evaporated milk
Ricotta cheese.................Firm tofu
Whole milk.................Buttermilk

Meat, Poultry, and Fish
Oil-packed tuna.................Water-packed tuna
Salami, pastrami, bologna.................Lean roast beef or turkey
Beef pot pie.................Canned stew (or homemade low-sodium stew is even better!) with a crust made from reduced-fat biscuit mix
Fish sticks .................Bread your own fish with whole-wheat bread crumbs, light margarine, and lemon juice
Regular bacon.................Canadian bacon
Regular ground beef.................Extra lean ground beef or lean ground turkey
Pork sausage.................Turkey sausage
Porterhouse steak or chuck.................Beef tenderloin or top round
Pork loin.................Pork tenderloin

Ordering Out
Cream-based soup.................Broth-based soup
Onion rings.................French fries
Egg rolls.................Steamed pork dumplings
Sour cream or cheese on nachos or baked potatoes.................Salsa
White sauce.................Red sauce
Pasta sauce containing sausage or cheese, or cream-based sauces.................Marinara sauce

Snacks and Desserts
Chocolate-chip cookie.................Vanilla wafers, gingersnaps, fig bars, or animal crackers
Fruit juice.................Fresh fruit
Ice cream.................Frozen yogurt, low-fat ice cream, sorbet, sherbet, or gelato
Ice cream bar.................Frozen fudge pop
Pound cake with strawberries.................Angel food cake with strawberries
Prepared potato-chip dip.................Fat-free sour cream and powdered ranch dressing mix
Prepared chocolate-cream pie.................Chocolate pudding made with skim milk in a graham- cracker crust, topped with low-fat whipped cream
Shortening in pie crust recipes.................½ nonfat cream cheese and ½ margarine
Store-bought cinnamon chips.................Flour tortillas coated with nonstick cooking spray and sprinkled with sugar substitute and cinnamon

Coffee creamer.................Fat-free half-and-half
Club soda.................Seltzer
Hot chocolate mix.................Cocoa powder and artificial sweetener
Margaritas, pinã coladas, or daiquiris.................Gin and tonic, or wine

Gravy.................Fat-free broth, thickened with cornstarch
Regular maple syrup.................Light maple syrup
Hot-fudge ice-cream topping.................Chocolate syrup

Monday, November 3, 2008

Meatball Soup

This is a recipe I tried from Deceptively Delicious. I thought the broth was awesome and super flavorful. I would even make it on its own with a little basil in it. The meatballs were not bad but I thought they were a little bread-y so next time I'd probably put more meat in the recipe. I actually didn't think the soup needed the noodles at all but they weren't bad. For those out there that don't like (or have kids that don't like) wheat noodles, one trick is to overcook the noodles a little bit. When the noodles are softer the texture is a little more like regular noodles. I got full surprisingly fast with this soup.

Meatball Soup

3 ounces whole-wheat pasta (shape of choice)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 gloves garlic, chopped
1 (28oz) can whole peeled tomatoes, with their juice
1/4 cup carrot puree
3 cups reduced fat, low sodium chicken broth

3 slices whole wheat bread, cubed
1 large egg, beaten (or 1/4 cup Egg Beaters)
1/4 cup sweet potato puree
1/4 cup nonfat (skim) milk
2 tablespoons grated or shredded Parmesan (plus more for serving)
1/4 tsp paprika
1/2 pound lean ground turkey

1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling, salted water according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
2. Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. When the pot in hot, add the olive oil and then the onion and garlic. Cook, stirring often until the onion is softened.
3. Pureed the tomatoes and their juice with the carrot puree and salt in a food processor or blender then add to the pot. Add the broth, reduce heat to low, and simmer, covered, for 10 to 15 minutes
4. Meanwhile, put the bread in a large bowl. Add the egg, sweet potato puree, milk, Parmesan, salt, pepper, paprika, and let soak until the bread is very soft. Stir to break up the bread, add the ground turkey, and mix until smooth. Form into mini meatballs.
5. Add the meatballs to the pot. Simmer, covered, until the meatballs are no longer pink in the center, 12-15 minutes. Stir in the pasta. Serve sprinkled w/ Parmesan.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Chicken Curry Salad

Chicken Curry Salad

1 cup diced celery
2 cups cooked chicken, cut into chunks or shredded
1-15oz can of sweet peas
2 cups cooked rice
1 1/4 cups mayonnaise/Miracle Whip
1 tsp curry powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/3 cup green onion, chopped (optional)

Combine and chill 1 hour. Add nuts if desired

You don't have to like curry to enjoy this salad. I usually eat it plain but you could use it in a sandwhich too if you desired. I use brown rice in mine and reduced fat Miracle Whip.

30 Ways to Sneak More Fruits and Vegetables Into Your Diet

Add blueberries to pancake, waffle, or muffin batter
Mix raisins, diced apple, or dried apricots into oatmeal
Add pepper, onion, spinach, broccoli, or shredded carrot to a morning omelet
Make a smoothie with fruit, low-fat yogurt, and ice
Add peppers and onion to hash browns, and serve with a little ketchup on the side
Top a toasted waffle with warmed applesauce

Lunch and Dinner
Top a pizza with mushrooms, peppers, onions, or pineapple
Put a slice of avocado on a regular sandwich
Add mushrooms, peppers, onions, or diced carrots to spaghetti sauce
Place a few slices of tomato on a grilled cheese sandwich
Add some extra mixed vegetables to soup
Add celery, onions, carrots, or peppers to meatloaf
Replace the jam on a peanut butter sandwich with sliced bananas
Add apples, grapes, or raisins to chicken salad
Spread some cranberry sauce on a turkey sandwich
Top pork chops with apples, pears, or raisins
Roast fish under a layer of lemon, orange, or lime slices
Add layers of frozen spinach or eggplant to lasagna

Sides and Snacks
Top a baked potato with salsa
Use applesauce to replace half of the oil in any recipe
Slice a sweet potato, toss with a little olive oil, season as you wish, and bake to make sweet potato chips
Add mandarin oranges or diced pears when making Jell-O® salad
Try mixing dried fruit with almonds and a few M&Ms® as a snack
Mix fresh fruit and granola into yogurt
Add broccoli or diced pepper to macaroni and cheese
Blend cooked cauliflower into mashed potatoes

Choose fruit sorbet instead of ice cream
Enjoy a baked apple stuffed with raisins and topped with a drizzle of caramel sauce
Dip strawberries in chocolate syrup and top with low-fat whipped cream
Roast pears with honey and a sprinkling of ginger


Saturday, November 1, 2008

Lucas Beans

These are rediculously simple but I love them. I made these one day as a snack and now I do it weekly to get my legumes in! I seriously eat them as a snack all the time or put them on my taco salad. I decided to call them Lucas beans because the taste kind of reminded me how much I love Lucas! So here's a recipe for those of you who grew up in El Paso (or elsewhere) and ate way too much Lucas!

Lucas Beans

1 can dark red kidney beans, drained
Juice from 2-3 limes
Sprinkle with a seasoned salt that contains paprika or chili powder - I use Great American Land & Cattle Company Steak Seasoning that is actually from the good ole west Texas town of El Paso

(I think they're best after refrigerated)

Greek Burger

I don't have a picture because my pitas tore so they were kinda messy looking and I ended up eating them with a fork (still good!). I was surprised how good the sauce on the burgers were. I actually think it would have been good to prepare the meat just as normal ground meat and fill the pitas. Either way this was a good, flavorful burger to add to the mix. I will definitely make these again!

Greek Burger

1/4 small red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh mint, finely chopped
Juice from 1 whole lemon
1 lb ground meat (recipe called for lamb, I used ground turkey)
Salt & Pepper
*Mix all ingredients together. Form patties of desired size. Prepare as desired...on grill, skillet, oven, etc.

2/3 cup nonfat plain yogurt
1 Tbsp fresh mint, chopped
2 tsp chopped garlic
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp honey
1/2 cup peeled and finely diced cucumber

Serve in whole wheat pitas. Top with lettuce, tomatoes, crumbled feta, and dressing.