Monday, January 31, 2011

Spaghetti Pie

1/2 box (about 6-7 oz) whole grain spaghetti
1  egg, beaten
1/3 c parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp pepper

Cheese Filling:
1 c fat free cottage cheese
1 egg, beaten

2 c finely chopped broccoli florets
1 1/2 c marinara
1/2 c shredded mozzarella

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Mix pasta, egg, cheese and pepper and press into a 9" pie plate sprayed with cooking spray.

Top with cheese filling. Add broccoli, sauce, and mozzarella.

Bake covered for 25 minutes, remove foil and cook until cheese melts.

*You can easily make this ahead and pop in the oven later. Try with other finely chopped/shredded veggies too :)

STATS (per 1/6th):
269 calories, 8 g fat, 18g protein, 550mg sodium

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Saturday, January 29, 2011

Multigrain Cherry Muffins

1 c seven grain cereal
1 c dried tart cherries
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1/4 c cooking oil
1 1/4 c low fat buttermilk
1 c whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 TBSP fresh grated ginger or 1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1 beaten egg

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease (16) 2 1/2" muffin cups.

Combine cereal, cherries, brown sugar, and oil. Pour buttermilk over mixture and let stand 30 minutes. Add egg.

In a large bowl, mix dry ingredients and make a well in the center. Pour wet mixture into dry mixture. Stir just until moistened.  Spoon batter into cups to fill each 3/4.

Bake 15-18 minutes until golden. Cool at least 5 minutes before serving.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sweet Potato Soup

Delicious? Healthy?  Easy? SOLD. 

3 large sweet potatoes
2 stalks celery (from the center w/ leafy tops if possible)
1 small onion
1 apple
2 medium carrots
1" ginger root
orange, zest and juice
2 c poultry or vegetable stock
water to cover
grated nutmeg (to taste)
1/4 tsp red pepper + more to taste
1/4 tsp black pepper + more to taste
1 tsp sea salt (+/- to taste)

Peel potatoes, carrots, apple and ginger. Cut potatoes, carrots, celery, and onion into 1-2" chunks and place in pot. Cut apples and ginger into 1/2" chunks and add. Zest orange into pot, and add its juice. Discard pulp and peels. Add stock and water to cover veggies 1" over their tops.

Cook 8-10 hours on low heat until vegetables are tender.

Seal lid and cook on high until regulator value gently rocks PLUS 6 minutes. If valve is rocking too hard, reduce heat. Let pressure decrease on its own before opening pot (15-20 minutes).

Heat to boiling and reduce to medium heat. Cook uncovered 30-40 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Once soup has cooked, puree until smooth with an immersion blender, or cool slightly and puree in a stand up blender carefully, opening the lid often to let steam escape. You may also want to hold a towel over the lid to keep it from flying off.

Add seasonings to pureed soup and adjust to  taste.
Optional: Add 1 cup half and half or light cream for a smoother texture or swirl 1 TBSP cream in each bowl.

STATS (per 2 c bowl, 1/6 of pot without added cream):
113 calories, 23g carbs, 1 g fat, 4g protein, 9 g sugar

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pumpkin Waffles

1 1/2 c white flour
1/2 whole wheat flour
2 TBSP brown sugar
1 TBSP baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 c lowfat buttermilk
1 c canned pumpkin
1/2 c egg beaters or 2 eggs
1 1/2 TBSP oil

Preheat waffle iron.

In a medium bowl, mix dry ingredients together. Form a well in the center.

In another bowl, mix wet ingredients together. Add wet to dry and stir gently just until all is blended.

Spray waffle iron with cooking spray and cook according to manufacturers directions.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Ginger Mint Green Tea

There is nothing like a cold glass of green tea to quench your thirst and keep your metabolism going. This adds the stomach soothing power of ginger and a fresh clean taste from the mint leaves. If you like you tea sweetened you can add a small amount of honey, agave nectar, or your favorite calorie-free sugar substitute.

8 cups water
6 green tea bags
1" piece ginger root, thinly slice
2 sprigs mint leaves

Boil water in a pan or kettle. Add tea bags, ginger, and mint and let stand until cooled.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Oven Roasted Fries

You don't have to give up fries if you are watching what you eat or taking a stand on fried fries. Good crispy oven fries can be just as delicious but much better for you.

1 TBSP olive oil
4 medium potatoes (about 1.5 lbs)
1/2 tsp kosher or sea salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 c Parmesan  cheese

Heat oven to 450 degrees.

Line a baking sheet with foil and brush with 1/2 of the olive oil. Set aside.

Cut potatoes into 1/2" wedges. Put in a large bowl with the other 1/2 of the oil. Toss well and add the salt and pepper. Toss until the wedges are evenly coated. Spread on a single layer on baking sheet.

Roast potatoes for 12 minutes, turn and sprinkle with cheese, and return to oven for another 12 minutes until potatoes are soft but golden.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

How I stretched a $3 whole chicken into 3 meals with my crockpot

A whole chicken (on sale of course), is one of the best bargains in the market! I try to grab them when they are no more than $1/per pound and fill the freezer. Here is how I stretched one on a quiet Sunday.....

Half fill sink with hot water. Let chicken sit in sink for 15-30 minutes to thaw. Drain sink, remove wrapping from chicken and rinse. Remove the insides and discard.
Spray crockpot with cooking spray. Add chicken and sprinkle with RUB. Cook 4-6 hours on low until chicken falls apart when poked with a fork. I turn chicken over midway thru.
Remove chicken. Using a sharp knife, cut off skin, and remove meat from bones.

Return bones, skin, a bay leaf, a carrot, 1/2 an onion, and 2-3 stalks celery to crock. Fill to the top with water. Let sit 12-14 hours on low heat.
Line a wire strainer with paper towels. Put strainer over a large pot or bowl (but small enough that strainer doesn't fall in) and pour the stocks through. Let drain, and discard the bones and pieces from the strainer.

* Carve white meat and serve over salad.
* Make Buffalo chicken salad for lunches- Shred chicken. Mix with buffalo sauce, light mayo, and shredded carrot and chopped celery.
* Make Mexican Lasagna
* Make Chicken Soup- Heat stock, chicken, carrots, celery, onions, etc on medium heat. Bring to a boil and cook until vegetables are tender. Add rice or soup pasta and turn heat off. Let stand at least 20 minutes before serving.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 sticks softened unsalted butter
3/4 c brown sugar
1/2 c white sugar
2 eggs (room temp if possible)
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 c white flour
3 c oats
1 c chopped walnuts
1 c semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Mix butter, sugars, and vanilla extract until fluffy. Add eggs, soda, and salt and mix until blended. Beat in flour, then oats. Stir in nuts and chocolate gently until incorporated into dough.

Use a tablespoon to scoop dough. Roll into a ball and flatten to form each cookie.

Bake 8-11 minutes until cookies are lightly browned. Let cool 5-10 minutes and transfer to a cooling rack.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Marie's Standby Coffee Cake

2 c baking mix (can sub reduced fat baking mix)
1 c low fat buttermilk
1 egg (can sub 1/4 c egg substitute)
1 TBSP real maple syrup
1 TBSP honey
1 tsp vanilla
2 TBSP milled flax seed
zest from 1 orange
1 c finely chopped apples

2 TBSP whole wheat flour
1 TBSP sugar
1 TBSP brown sugar
1 TBSP milled flax seed
3 TBSP cubed butter
1/4 chopped nuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease an 8x8 glass baking pan.
Mix all batter ingredients except apples. Pour half of the batter into the pan, then apples, then remaining batter.

Mix topping ingredients together to form crumb texture. Pour crumble over the top.

Bake for 25-30 minutes until topping browns and a toothpick inserted into cake comes out clean.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Honey Soy Sweet Potatoes

2 cloves of garlic
1 small onion
1 TBSP of olive oil
2 TBSP of honey
1 TBSP of soy sauce
1 TBSP of rice vinegar
1 lb sweet potatoes (about three medium size)

Heat oven to 450 degrees.

Chop sweet potatoes into bite size pieces and toss with olive oil and one TBSP honey. Roast sweet potatoes about 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and have dark spots on them.

Chop onion and garlic. In a small pan sprayed with cooking spray, cook until browned and translucent. Add remaining honey, soy and rice vinegar. Bring to a boil. reduce heat and simmer 1-2 minutes until syrupy.

Toss roasted potatoes in the glaze.

Sweet potatoes are a super dose of vitamin A -five times the daily value (DV) the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends. They also offer some vitamin C and a significant helping of important minerals, including calcium, phosphorus, potassium, magnesium and iron.
If you buy local raw honey (which we do), it has been said to help with environmental allergies.

STATS (per 1/6th)
106 calories, 20g carbs, 3g fat, 2g protein, 11g sugar, 118 mg sodium

Saturday, January 15, 2011

MDP's seasoning mix

No need to buy fancy spice rubs when you can make up your own. Just mix and store in a ziploc bag or airtight container. This one is great for any meat, but is a tad spicy so you will want to go easy unless you like your food spicy.

3 TBSP paprika
2 TBSP salt
2 TBSP garlic powder
1 TBSP black pepper
1 TBSP onion powder
1 TBSP cayenne pepper
1 TBSP dried oregano
1 TBSP dried thyme
1 TBSP chili powder
1 TBSP cumin

STATS per 1/2 tsp (I use more like 1/4 tsp per 4 oz protein)
3 calories
1 carb
167 mg sodium

This is in the Myfitnesspal database under Momvsfood website- MDP's seasoning

Friday, January 14, 2011

Roasted Veggie Tart

1 premade refrigerated pie crust or homemade dough for 1 crust
8 oz cream cheese
1/2 c mozzarella cheese
1/2 c gorgonzola or blue cheese
1/2 c roasted fresh tomatoes
2 c roasted veggies (onions, squash,  broccoli, peppers, etc)
1 head roasted garlic
1 egg, beaten
Dried chopped onion, sesame seeds, kosher salt, sesame seeds, poppy seeds, etc.

Heat oven to 375 degrees.

In a food processor, blend mozzarella cheese, tomatoes and roasted garlic.

Unroll crust on an ungreased cookie sheet (or roll dough to 1/8" thickness if you made your own and transfer to sheet). Spread cream cheese mixture in center of crust leaving 1-2" around the edges. Top with gorgonzola or blue cheese and the roasted vegetables.

Fold the bare crust over the toppings, making a fold every 2" to make it circular. Brush the crust with egg and sprinkle with dried onion/seeds.

Bake until the crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly, about 20-25 minutes.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Mexican Lasagna

10 corn tortillas
1 c chopped chicken breast
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilis (Rotel)
1 can reduced fat cream of chicken soup
1/2 c skim milk
1 1/2 c shredded Colby jack cheese
2 c chopped fresh spinach
bunch each: cilantro, parsley, mint
1 lime, juice and zest
1/4 small onion
1/2 bell pepper
1 can fat free refried beans

In a food processor, pulse fresh herbs, lime zest and juice, and olive oil to make a pesto. Mix chicken and pesto and set aside.

In a deep round casserole dish, spread 1-2 TBSP rotel to coat the bottom.
In food processor bowl, blend soup, milk, and remaining rotel.

Tear corn tortillas into halves. Place a layer on the bottom of the casserole. Add refried beans, and a little of the pink rotel/soup mixture. Cover with a layer of tortillas. Add spinach and 1/2 c cheese, cover with a little of the pink mixture. Layer tortillas, add chicken mix. Cover with another layer of tortillas, and remaining pink sauce. Add remaining cheese.

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 1 hour. Tent with foil for the first 30 minutes, then remove for the second 30 minutes.

Top with chopped green onions and serve with salsa, hot sauce, sour cream, sliced jalapenos, and other favorite condiments.

Makes 8 servings.
Stats without toppings:
319 calories, 30g carbs,16g fat, 22g protein,3g sugar,947mg sodium 

Quick Mexican rice

2 c brown rice
2 1/2 c water
1 chicken bouillon
1 chipotle cube (or 1/2 tsp powdered)
2 cilantro cubes (or 1 tsp powdered)
1 can corn, undrained
1/2 chopped bell pepper, any color
green onion (bottoms only)
1 carrot, shredded

Place all ingredients in a rice cooker, following directions for brown rice cooking time.

Fat Free Ginger Peach Frozen Yogurt

1 can sliced peaches in light syrup
2 c non fat plain yogurt
1-2" ginger root, grated

Puree peaches in a blender, add yogurt and grated ginger root. Pulse until blended.

Pour into ice cream maker and churn for 25 minutes.

80 calories, 16 carbs, 0 g fat, 5g protein, 17g sugar, 100 mg sodium

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Homemade BBQ sauce

2-4 slices bacon
1 small onion
3-4 cloves garlic
bay leaf
1/4 c liquid smoke
1/4 c apple cidar vinegar
1/4 c honey
1/4 c brown sugar
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp black pepper

In a skillet, brown bacon. Remove meat, and cook onions, garlic and bay leaf in bacon renderings.

Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and add reserved bacon bits. Simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Creamy Kale and Potato Soup

5 cloves garlic
2 small onions
3-4 medium potatoes
5-6 celery stalks from the heart w/ leafy tops
2 bay leaves
1 tsp thyme or 5-6 springs fresh thyme
2 c chicken, turkey, or vegetable stock
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp sea salt
dash cayenne
6-8 c chopped kale

Spray a stockpot or dutch oven with cooking spray, add chopped onion, garlic, celery, potatoes and bay leaves. Cook until lightly browned.

Add stock and seasonings and enough water to cover plus an inch over the vegetables. Bring to a boil and simmer on medium heat for 45 minutes until potatoes begin to fall apart. Remove bay leaves and thyme sprigs and puree soup with an immersion blender, or in batches in a standup blender (VERY CAREFULLY).

Add kale and cook another 15 minutes on low or until kale is fully wilted and no longer tough.

Garnish with a sprinkle of shredded cheddar cheese.
Makes about 12 cups.

Kale is a no-fat, low-calorie, super-high-vitamin-A food. One cup of kale (boiled, but not overcooked) gives you double the DV for vitamin A. You'll also get some vitamin C, a small amount of B vitamins and a generous amount of calcium.

STATS (per cup)
67 calories, 14g carbs, 0g fat, 2g protein, 1g sugar, 61g sodium

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Baked Coconut Chicken Tenders

1 c panko bread crumbs
1 c sweetened shredded coconut
1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp of paprika
1 tsp of salt
2 TBSP of mustard
2 TBSP of honey
2 lbs boneless skinless chicken breast tenders,

Heat oven to 400 degrees. In a  large bowl or casserole dish whisk honey and mustard. Add chicken and toss until coated, let marinate for at least 30 minutes.

In a bowl with a lid (I use a 6 cup tupperware) mix together half of the dry ingredients. Working in batches of 3 or 4, toss the chicken in the dry mixture and spread out on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Slowly add remaining dry ingredients in tossing bowl as needed. Spray tops of tenders with additional cooking spray.

Bake tenders 20-30 minutes until they are a deep golden brown.

Serve with homemade mustard (mix 2 parts mustard for every part honey)

STATS (per 2 chicken tenders)

256 calories, 8g fat, 20g carbs, 25g protein, 10g sugar, 278mg sodium

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Foley's Teriyaki Meatballs

2 lbs ground beef and or turkey or chicken
1 small onion, grated
2-3 cloves garlic, grated
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp oregano
¼ tsp pepper
½-1 c. bread crumbs
1 egg
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce

Mix the above ingredients together and form 1" meatballs. Start with 1/2 c breadcrumbs and add if mix is too wet.

Preroast meatballs on baking rack over cookie sheet until browned and  grease drains out.

Mix together and heat:
½ c soy sauce
1 c Worcestershire
3-4 Tbsp honey
1 c brown sugar
¼ c molasses
1 packet onion soup mix

Adjust to taste.

Heat all in crockpot at least 2 hours to let sauce soak into meatballs.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Healthy Cheesy Potato Fakeout!

1 can reduced-fat and reduced-sodium condensed cream of chicken soup
1 c shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese (4 ounces)
1/2 c skim milk
1/2 c light sour cream
1/2 c finely chopped onion or 2 tablespoons dried minced onion
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
32 oz frozen chopped cauliflower (or hash browns if you just cant do it)
1/2 c crushed cornflakes or crushed wheat cereal flakes

Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 2-quart rectangular baking dish; set aside.

In a very large bowl, combine soup, cheese, milk, sour cream, onion, and pepper. Stir in cauliflower. Spread mixture evenly in prepared baking dish.
Cover and bake for 45 minutes; stir casserole. Sprinkle with crushed cereal. Bake, uncovered, for 20 to 25 minutes more or until heated through and bubbly. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Swapping out cauliflower for the potatoes takes out the starch factor leaving room to enjoy a little of the cheesy deliciousness without the guilt!

Stats (per 1/8th): 120 calories, 6 g of fat, 11 g of carbs, 7 g protein, 3g sugar, 422 g of sodium

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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Easiest Banana Bread

1 cup bread flour
1 cup wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup apple butter or cinnamon apple sauce
1/2 cup plain yogurt
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
3-4 small mashed overripe bananas
optional: 1 cup chocolate chips or chopped nuts
optional: pinch of nutmeg and 2 TBSP turbinado (raw) sugar)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9X5" loaf pan with baking spray.

In mixer bowl, cream together applesauce, yogurt and sugar. Stir in eggs and mashed bananas until well blended. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking soda and salt.

Stir flour mixture into banana mixture; stir until just moistened. Add chocolate chips or nuts if using. Pour batter into prepared loaf pan or 2-12 count muffin pans (2 1/2").

Optional: Sprinkle the top of the unbaked loaf/muffins with coarse raw (turbinado) sugar and nutmeg.

Bake in preheated oven for 45-55 minutes for loaf or 15-20 minutes for muffins, until a toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Let bread cool in pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a wire rack.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Nifty Tip: Tomato Paste

Don't want to shell out the money for the fancy tubes of tomato paste when its so much cheaper in the can? I buy the most cost-effective size can of tomato paste, and split it into portions since no recipe ever calls for 14 ounces of tomato paste.

Take about 1/4 c paste and spread it in a snack bag so that it is flat. Push all the air our before sealing.
Freeze bags to make a thin sheet once it freezes. You can add the whole portion to a recipe, or even snap the sheet in half for a smaller amount. The bags store easily being flat and stackable.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Sammie Cakes

1 14.75 oz can Pink Salmon
1/2 c saltine or oyster cracker crumbs
1/2 c finely chopped onion
1/2 c finely chopped red bell pepper
2 TBSP light mayo or salad dressing
2 eggs, beaten + 1 separate egg beaten with 2 TBSP water
juice from 1 lemon
3 TBSP chopped parsley (fresh) or 1 TBSP dried
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2-1 c Italian breadcrumbs
1/4 tsp kosher salt

Drain and flake salmon in a medium bowl (it will have skin and small bones, which are edible, soft, and a great source of calcium and Omega 3's)

Combine cracker crumbs, onion, bell pepper, mayo, 2 eggs, lemon, parsley, garlic, black pepper and salmon.

Shape into 8 patties. Dip each patty in 1 egg/water wash, then the Italian breadcrumbs to coat.

Heat 1-2 TBSP oil in a large skillet. Cook patties over medium heat, turning only once, until both sides are golden brown and heated through.

Remove from skillet to platter lined with paper towels to remove excess grease.

*** These are very kid friendly and a great way to get kids to eat more healthy seafood! ***

Sunday, January 2, 2011

My Sisters Eggplant Parm

This dish is my niece Bridget's favorite. While you don't hear of many kids favoring a vegetable based meal, I can't say I blame her!

My niece Brigid with daughter Tia
Summer Vacation 2010

1 medium eggplant
1 c Italian bread crumbs
1/4 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg or 1/4 c egg beaters
1 TBSP water
1/4 c white or whole wheat flour
Olive oil as needed
Tomato pasta sauce or marinara
mozzarella cheese
Peel the eggplant then cut into thin slices(about 1/4 inch thick).

Mix flour, bread crumbs and parmesan cheese and place in a bowl.

Beat egg and water and place in another bowl.

Dredge the eggplant in the egg water mixture then in the flour/bread crumb mixture.
Saute the eggplant in olive oil until lightly browned. Cover the bottom of a baking dish with red pasta sauce. Then place the eggplant in the baking dish on top of the sauce. Layer the eggplant with sauce to cover and top with mozzarella cheese. Bake at 375 for 25 min.