Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Green Bean Salad

2 c. green beans, washed and snapped to 1" pieces
1 c. cherry tomatoes
1 TBSP olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
lemon, zest and juice
1 TBSP balsamic
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 TBSP honey
1/2 TBSP olive oil
1/4 c. red onion

Toss cherry tomatoes, garlic and 1 TBSP olive oil together. Roast under the broiler, turning once, until the tomatoes are charred. Set aside.

Blanch green beans in bowling water 5-7 minutes until softened, but still firm (al dente stlye). Drain and set aside.

In a serving bowl, whisk balsamic, pepper, honey, 1/2 TBSP olive oil, and the zest and juice of the lemon until emulsified.

Add green beans and tomatoes to dressing and toss to coat. Use a rubber spatula to get all the juices and garlic from the roasting pan.

Let stand at least 30 minutes and serve cold or at room temperature.

Monday, May 30, 2011

Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 3/4 c. white flour
1/2 c. whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1 stick of softened, unsalted butter
1/2 c. creamy peanut butter
3/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat even to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine first 4 ingredients. In a large bowl (or the kitchen aid mixer bowl), beat next 4 ingredients until creamy. Add eggs, separately until incorporated into mixture. Add vanilla extract, then flour mixture and beat until well blended.

Mix in by hand (even if you are using the mixer) 1 bag of chocolate chips. Bake for 8-12 minutes depending on cookie size. Makes 4 dozen small cookies or 2 dozen large cookies.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

MDP's Classic Juicy Burgers (revised)

5 lb ground beef
1 packet dry ranch dressing mix
1 packet onion soup mix
2 TBSP siracha or chili sauce
2 TBSP dijon mustard
1/2 c Worcestershire sauce
5 cloves garlic , grated
1 TBSP MDP's seasoning
Combine all ingredients well until blended. Let stand 10-15 minutes.

Divide into 15 portions. Form each portion into a ball and flatten to make a patty. Push down in the center of the patty to make an indent on both sides. This helps keep the burger flat while cooking as the meat shrinks and contracts.

Freeze extra burgers for a later use. Line a baking sheet with was paper. Form patties and lay them on sheet not touching (or just barely). Freeze until hardened and remove to store in a freezer bag.

Cook to your liking on a grill pan, broiler pan, outdoor grill, or in a frying pan.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Pork Wontons

18 Wonton wrappers
1/2 lb ground sausage
1" piece ginger root, grated
1/2 c. chopped green onion (from the white end)
five spice powder, pinch to taste
black pepper, pinch to taste
1 TBSP soy sauce

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Brown sausage in a skillet over medium heat. Once meat is almost cooked, add green onions, soy sauce and spices. Cook another 5 minutes.

Lay wonton wrappers on a flat surface and moisten the edges with a clean finger dipped in water. Spoon a teaspoon of the meat into the center of each, and bring opposite points together to make a triangle. Bring the other two corners up and pinch the sides together. Spray tops with cooking spray.

Bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.

Each wonton has:
60 calories
4g carbs
3g fat
3g protein
0g fiber
98mg sodium

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Coconut Pecan Scotchies

1 3/4 c white flour
1/2 c whole wheat flour
1 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
2 sticks of softened, unsalted butter
1/2 c sugar
3/4 c packed brown sugar
2 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 c shredded sweetened coconut
1 c chopped pecans
1 c butterscotch chips

Preheat even to 375 degrees.

In a medium bowl, combine first 4 ingredients.

In a large bowl (or the kitchen aid mixer bowl), beat next 4 ingredients until creamy. Add eggs, separately until incorporated into mixture. Add vanilla extract, then flour mixture and beat until well blended.

Mix in by hand (even if you are using the mixer): coconut, pecans, and butterscotch chips. Drop onto ungreased cookie sheet by teaspoons or tablespoons.

Bake for 8-12 minutes depending on cookie size. Makes 4 dozen small cookies or 2 dozen large cookies.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Homestyle Potato Salad (with a surprise mystery guest!)

8 small red potatoes (about 2" each), cut into 8ths
2 small turnips (baseball size), cut into chunks similar to the potatoes
2 eggs
3 medium stalks celery, finely chopped
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/4 c. light mayo
1/2 c. nonfat plain yogurt
2 TBSP white vinegar
2 1/2 TBSP yellow mustard
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp dill
1/2-1 tsp celery salt (to taste)
1/4-1/2 tsp black pepper (to taste)

Place the potatoes and turnip chunks in a large saucepan and cover with water. Heat to boiling and reduce heat so that water gently bubbles. Cook covered 15-20 minutes, or until vegetables are tender when pierced with a fork. Drain and cool.

While the potatoes are cooking, put eggs in a small saucepan and cover with 2" of water and a couple drops of vegetable oil. Bring to a boil, and turn off heat. Let eggs stand 15 minutes in boiling water. Drain and cool with ice water.

In a serving bowl, whisk mayo, yogurt, vinegar, mustard, and seasonings together. Add celery and onions. Using a microplane or fine cheese grater, grate the eggs and stir mixture well to incorporate everything. Add potatoes and turnips and toss to coat. Let sit 4 hours for flavors to blend.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Chicken Parm Burgers

1 lb ground chicken (you can substitute turkey if you cant find chicken)
1/2 c bread crumbs
1 small onion, grated
1 TBSP Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
2 cloves garlic, grated
1 egg
1 tsp Worcestershire

1 tomato, thinly sliced
1 c. fresh basil leaves
4 slices mozzarella

Combine all but the last 3 ingredients in a medium bowl. Form into 4 patties, and place on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray. Cook under the broiler about 5 minutes per side until browned well.

After cooking both sides, layer with tomato slices, then basil leaves, and a slice of cheese. Return to the broiler until melted and browned.

WHY DIDN'T YOU GRILL THEM? you ask? The chicken was a little moister than burgers usually are here are our house and it would've oozed through the grate before forming an exterior crust. If you want to grill, I'd suggest just setting down a sheet of foil to keep them together when they first go on.

This is GREAT with a little arugula and sun dried tomato. Serve as a salad with the burger patty on the side or as a sandwich on a ciabatta roll with a little herbed mayo. YUM!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Ciabatta Rolls

I've have been making my family's pizza dough for a while, so one day I decided may as well play around with the recipe and make our rolls from scratch too. I make lots of sandwiches for lunches, so we go through about a batch per week. I like to top them with grilled veggies, leftover roasted meat, and tuna or chicken salads, but they are great for cold cuts too!

This recipe makes a large round bulky sized roll, about the same as the 4-5" commercially prepared rolls I used to buy, just without all the strange junk in the ingredient list. I find it easy to swap out family favorites when they look like what everyone is used to ;)

1 c. warm water
2 1/4 tsp dry yeast (or 1 packet)
1 1/2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP honey
1 TBSP brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 c. bread flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
1 TBSP flax seeds
1 TBSP steel cut oats
1 TBSP sunflower seeds

Combine warm water and yeast in a warm mixing bowl. Add oil and honey and mix until combined.

Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until combined and the dough is sticky and clings together (in the mixer it will all cling to the dough hook and clean the sides of the bowl). Knead for 10 minutes. Spray the ball of dough with cooking spray and turn so its all coated. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and stick in the oven. Heat the oven to 400 degrees for 1 minute ONLY and shut the oven off. Let the dough rise for 1 hour.

Punch dough down; knead for a few minutes in your mixer until smooth and shape into a disk. Place on a floured cutting board and cut the disk into 8 like you would a pie or pizza (I make the disk thin enough that I can cut it with a pizza cutter). Take each piece of the dough and knead with your hands, forming a ball. Slightly flatten the ball and use a knife to cut a vertical and horizontal line through the top (+) and place on an ungreased cookie sheet. Repeat with the other 7 sections. Let rise in a warm place until doubled in size, at least 30 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes. Rolls will be done with the tops are golden brown (you may want to lift one to make sure the bottom isn't too brown).

Remove bread from oven and allow to rest  a couple minutes before using a spatula to move to a cooling rack. Store rolls in a cool and airtight location. Leave unsliced until you are ready to use.

Each roll has:
232 calories
42g carbs
5g fat
7g protein
4g fiber
129 mg sodium

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Sesame Chicken

1 lb boneless, skinless chicken breast, 1" cubed
1 TBSP sesame oil- divided
1/2 c. fruit juice (I use whats on hand and adjust to suit, usually apple, orange, pink grapefruit, or a tropical blend)
1/4 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. rice wine vinegar
2 TBSP orange marmalade
1 TBSP honey
1 tsp siracha
1 TBSP cornstarch
1/4 c. sesame seeds
3 cloves garlic, grated
1/2" ginger root, grated
1/2 c. thinly sliced scallions
salt and pepper

In a dry skillet, toast sesame seeds over medium heat. (Add them to the hot skillet, and stir often until golden.) Set aside.

Toss chicken with 1 tsp sesame oil, salt and pepper. Saute in a skillet OR skewer and grill OR spread on a baking sheet and roast until cooked through. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, combine remaining sesame oil, juice, soy, vinegar, marmalade, honey, siracha, ginger and garlic. Bring to a low boil. Mix cornstarch with 1 TBSP cold water and stir until smooth. Add to sauce with 1/2 of the toasted sesame seeds.

Toss the cooked chicken with the sesame sauce. Serve over brown rice and garnish with the remaining toasted seeds and scallions.

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Friday, May 13, 2011

Broccoli Potato Soup

1 TBSP olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 bayleaf
4 small potatoes, peeled and 1/4" cubed (about 1lb worth)
6 c. chicken broth (I use 3 c. strong homemade stock and 3 c. water)
1 bunch broccoli, florets chopped and stems shredded (about 3 c. total)
2 large carrots, shredded
4 c. skim milk
2 TBSP cornstarch
salt, black pepper, red pepper, paprika
2 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Heat a dutch oven or 2 handled soup pot over medium heat and add olive oil. Swirl to distribute heat, and add onions and bay leaf. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add potatoes and cook another 5 minutes to brown. Add broth/stock and water and stir to deglaze the pan.

Add shredded vegetables and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce heat and cook about 10-15 minutes until potatoes are tender. Melt cornstarch with some of the *cold* milk, and add to soup with the remaining milk. Season to taste, starting with a pinch each of salt, peppers, and paprika. (Go easy on the salt as the cheese will add saltiness to it). Stir constantly and return to a boil to thicken soup. Add a little pepper/salt if needed.

Turn off heat, and add in cheese. Stir until melted and smooth.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Chocolate Chip Banana Nut Muffins

3/4 c. white flour
1 c. whole wheat flour
1/2 c. turbinado or "raw" sugar
1 TBSP baking powder
1 TBSP flax seed
2 egg whites
3/4 c. buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla
2 overripe banana, mashed
1/2 c chopped walnuts
1/2 c chocolate chips

Heat oven to 400 degrees. Spray 6- 3" muffin cups with cooking spray for large muffins, or 12- 2 1/2" cups for small.

In large bowl mix flours, sugar, baking powder, nuts and chocolate. Make a hole in the center of the dry mix.

In a small bowl, whip whites until foamy, then add in buttermilk, banana, and vanilla and mix until blended.

Add wet mix into the well in the middle of the dry mix and gently stir until just moistened.

Spoon the batter into cups and bake 22-25 minutes for large, 18-20 minutes for small. Use a toothpick in the center of the muffin to make sure they are done and cool 5 minutes on a wire rack before eating.

Friday, May 6, 2011

5 Ways to Add a Little Extra Love

#1- Add 1 TBSP milled flax to your yogurt cups. This adds protein, fiber, and Omega-3's.

#2- When making Caesar salads, instead of all romaine lettuce use a mixture of romaine and baby spinach. Great way to add more vegetables and sneak in vitamin K, vitamin A, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B2, potassium, and vitamin B6.

#3- When you are using tomato sauce for pizza, pasta, or casseroles, mix equal parts tomato and pureed roasted red peppers (open jar, dump the liquid, puree peppers-VIOLA!). Great way to add more vegetables and sneak in extra vitamin A and vitamin C.

#4- Sprinkle crusts with whole flax seeds before topping, like pizza before you add tomatoes or quiche before you add meat and vegetables. You can also sprinkle some into your quesadillas before adding cheese. This adds protein, fiber, and Omega-3's.

#5- Add life to a can or corn or beans. Sometimes when in a rush, its okay to pop open a can over fresh. Saute half a red onion and half a bell pepper in 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, cumin and coriander. Rinse corn or beans well in a strainer and set aside. Once the onion and pepper are soft, add the corn or beans and cook until warmed through. Add 1 TBSP butter and a splash of white wine (or chicken stock), and stir to deglaze the pan. Cook an additional 3-5 minutes. Great way to add more vegetables and sneak in extra vitamin A, vitamin C, and flavanoids.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Crockpot BBQ Brisket

Nothing is more comforting to me then some slow-cooked and tender beef that falls apart in your mouth! Pick up some brisket when they are real cheap and trim up as much of the fat as possible to keep it healthy (don't worry, there will be plenty you can't trim to keep it juicy!).

At least 24 hours (or as long as 72 hours) before you are going to make this, trim and marinade your meat. I let it soak in 1/4 cup vinaigrette + 1/4 cup vinegar for each 4 pounds of meat. Use a good quality vinegar, and a variety like balsamic or red wine. I also add some fresh garlic or garlic powder. *the vinegar helps to break down the tough fibers of the meat*

Cook marinaded brisket for 10 hours on low heat in a crock pot. Check after 4 hours if possible, if meat is not covered in its own juices, add 1 can or beer or cola. Meat will be done when its loose and starts to fall apart when you poke it at with a fork.

Drain all juices out of crockpot with a strainer. Return meat to crock and add 1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce over the meat. Do not stir. Let sit on low heat another 30 minutes and serve with the drippings on the side.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Steaklovers Chili

1 large chopped onion
1 large green bell pepper
3 garlic cloves
2 lb london broil or other cut good for slow cooking
1 28oz can tomatoes (diced, or use whole and mash them with a wooden spoon once added)
2 8 oz cans tomato sauce
1 can kidney beans or 1 c dry kidney beans, reconstituted
1 can pinto beans or 1 c dry reconstituted
1 batch MDP's chili seasoning
1 TBSP MDP's seasoning
1 1/2 tsp liquid smoke
2 TBSP steak sauce
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce

Spray a slow cooker with cooking spray. Sprinkle both sides of the steak with MDP's seasoning. Place in the bottom of the crockpot. Pile everything EXCEPT last 3 ingredients on top of meat. Cook 8-10 hours on low.

The chili is done when the meat falls apart. Fork shred any large chunks, and add the remaining 3 ingredients. Adjust to suit your taste.

This hearty, filling chili is great with my Lightened Up Cornbread Muffins .

Superstats (per cup):
190 calories
20g carbs
4g fat
20g protein
4g fiber
526 mg sodium

This is in the Myfitnesspal database under Momvsfood Website- Steaklovers Chili :)