Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Tuscan Lentil Soup

I know I have mentioned a cookbook I love- The Good Carb Cookbook. I saw this recipe and thought it sounded interesting, though I have limited experience eating lentils and that experience was NOT a pleasant one! So today as the weather has definitely changed, I decided would be a great time to try this out on the family. We were not disappointed! In fact, Sam ate two servings (small ones, but hey!) as did Joe and I. Conveniently the store had marked down their foccacia rolls, and they were a match made in heaven! The really nice thing is that this whole meal probably cost less than a latte!
Here it is, I highly recommend trying this one!

Tuscan Lentil Soup

3/4 c brown lentils, picked thru and rinsed
1/3 c brown rice
4oz mushrooms, rough chopped
1 c chopped celery, including leaves (yummm!)
1 medium onion, chopped
1/2 zucchini, diced (this was my addition, I am trying to get more veggies!)
1 tbsp crushed garlic
beef bouillon granules to make 4 cups broth
2 tsp Tuscan seasoning (I have a little grinder that has sage, bay, basil, marjoram, thyme, and rosemary)
1/4 tsp black pepper
5 cups water
1 quart jar tomatoes, crushed in juices
3 c packed fresh spinach (I used 1 cup frozen and will use more next time)
2 tbsp olive oil
Parmesan or Asiago cheese

Heat 1 tbsp oil in a big soup pot (at least 4 qt) over medium-high heat until rippling. Toss in the chopped veggies (except tomatoes and spinach) and garlic and saute for about 5 minutes until tender, then add in the rice. Cook stirring often for a few minutes to slightly brown the rice, then add in the spices and lentils. Pour in the water and the bouillon and bring to a boil.
Lower the heat to low and cover the pot. Simmer for 40 minutes. Add the undrained tomatoes (and frozen spinach if using) and cook another 20-30 minutes until lentils are tender and the liquid is thick. Add in the fresh spinach and remaining oil and cook another minute or two to wilt the spinach.
Serve topped with grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese and a nice crusty bread! This also paired nicely with a new pinot noir we tried- Scarlet of Paris.

Friday, October 13, 2006

"Musical" Chili

I call this "Musical" Chili for an obvious reason! It was very tasty and -tho vegetarian- it was also very filling! I will be making this many times in the next few months...

"Musical" Chili P1

1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup cooked chickpeas
1 1/4 cups cooked soybeans
1 can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 small zucchini, diced
1 large onion, chopped
1 green pepper, seeded and chopped
2 TBSP chopped garlic
1 large can tomato sauce
1 quart home-canned diced tomatoes
2 TBSP cajun seasoning
1 tsp chipotle powder
1 tsp salt, if needed
2 tsp olive oil

Heat oil in a non-stick pan over medium-high heat until hot. Saute zucchini, onion, pepper, and garlic about 5 minutes until soft. When softened, dump into 5 or 6 quart crockpot set to high. Add all other ingredients except salt, and stir well. Cover and cook on high 2 hours (at this point mine was simmering). After 2 hours, check for seasoning adding salt if needed. Continue cooking on high another hour or two.

We ate ours topped with shredded white cheddar cheese and FF sour cream. This makes a couple meals-worth, and freezes well!

5:4 Challenge #9- Beef, Potatoes, Peas, Legumes, and Tomatoes!

This is my dish for the latest 5:4. I know it's not terribly creative, but the cool snap has me thinking warm, comfort-foody thoughts! This definitely fit the bill!

Hash P2-3

8 tiny yellow potatoes, scrubbed and chopped
1 quart home-canned tomatoes with their juice
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
1 cup cooked soybeans
1 1/2 cups cooked ground beef
1 TBSP beef boullion granules
1 TBSP chopped garlic
3/4 cup water
1/2 TBSP olive oil
1 small onion, chopped

Heat a non-stick pan over medium-high heat, add the oil and potatoes. Cover and cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the onions and cook another 5 minutes, adding some of the water as neccessary. Sprinkle with beef granules and add the beans and tomatoes with more water if needed. Cook covered for about 10 minutes until potatoes are cooked. Toss in the peas and garlic, and cook uncovered for 3-5 minutes to heat thru and slightly cook the garlic (I like the bite of raw garlic!).That's it! Simple and delicious!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding

As I said, I am now trying other flavors of bread pudding. The one comment Joe made about the cranberry one was that he thought it needed chocolate chips! Well, I didn't want to use the last of that bread for it, so I used some homemade Whole Wheat Oat Bran Bread I made the other day. It was drier, so it soaked up more milk and was moister in the end. Very good! I have also found that my local Walmart is now carrying Ghiardelli Bittersweet Chips! Yay! No more breaking up my bars! Notice the piece taken out, that wasn't like that when I put the pan away last night...

Chocolate Chip Bread Pudding P2

8 cups cubed WW or WG bread, preferably homemade
3 eggs, beaten
½ cup brown sugar substitute
1 can evaporated skim milk
1 ¼ cup skim milk
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup SF Kahlua syrup
1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (I used Ghirardelli)
Cinnamon/ fructose mix

Preheat oven to 350. Spray an 8x11 pan well.
Mix the wet ingredients and sugar substitute together well, and toss with the bread. Let this sit 20 minutes.
Mix in the chips and pour everything into the sprayed pan, making sure to level the top. Sprinkle with the cinnamon fructose.
Bake for 45 minutes or until a knife comes out clean. Let cool 45 minutes before cutting.

Cranberry Bread Pudding

My hubby has always said he liked bread pudding- I had never had it! We tried the fried ones at Applebee's recently, and though they were good they just weren't healthy! I had that Cranberry bread, so I thought I'd give it a whirl. Yummo! It's inspired me to try other varieties too!

Cranberry Bread Pudding P2

3 large slices WW Spiced Cranberry Bread, cubed
2 eggs, beaten
3 TBSP fructose
1 can evaporated skim milk
2 tsp cinnamon
Cinnamon/fructose mix, optional

Mix the fructose, eggs, and milk together in a large bowl. Toss in the bread cubes and let soak for 10 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350. Place ramekins into 9x13 pan and pour hot water around them (water-bath).
Divide the mixture among sprayed ramekins (I used four large), pouring the juices evenly in them. Sprinkle lightly with the cinnamon fructose if desired.
Bake for 25-35 minutes until knife inserted comes out clean. Let cool 20 minutes before eating (if you can!)

I made a little "sauce" for mine with 1 TBSP SF apricot jam and 2 tsp spread, nuked. I poured this over the top and added a small dollop of Cool Whip. Heavenly! Did have it last night without the sauce, it was just as good.

Stuffed French Toast

I made that cranberry bread the other day, and thought it would be fabulous like this- I was right!

Stuffed French Toast P2

2 slices WW Spiced Cranberry Bread
1 beaten egg + 1 egg white
¼ tsp vanilla
Pinch cinnamon
2 TBSP cinnamon cream cheese
SF maple syrup

Mix together the egg and white, cinnamon, and vanilla. Set aside.
Heat griddle to 300 degrees. Grease or spray lightly.
Dip each piece of bread into the egg mixture and let sit 2 minutes. Cook the bread on the hot griddle4 minutes on each side or until nicely browned. Remove to a plate and spread the cream cheese on one side of one slice, top with remaining slice. Return to griddle and cook another 2 minutes or so to warm the filling. Plate with syrup!

Friday, September 22, 2006

Veggies & Cheese Casserole

I got this recipe today from Danielle. I had asked for suggestions to liven up our dinner veggies as it seems we are eating the same old, same old. She gave me this one, and I added a couple things. WOW! The kiddo wasn't impressed, but he's not fond of mixing anything. Hubby and I though thought this was terrific, and it will be made quite often I'm sure! Thanks DD! I served this with Bacon Cheezburger Meatloaf. It was a match made in heaven!

Veggies & Cheese Casserole P2 (P1 if you omit breadcrumbs)

16oz bag frozen cauliflower
10oz bag frozen broccoli
4oz lite cream cheese
2 wedges Laughing Cow Lite
3 TBSP dried chives
1/2 cup FF sour cream
4 TBSP margarine, divided
3/4 cup WW breadcrumbs
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 cup shredded sharp cheddar
1 cup shredded Italian mixed cheese
1/4 cup bacon bits (the real kind)

Preheat oven to 350.
Bring water to a boil and cook the cauliflower just until tender, then drain well and place in a bowl. Using a potato masher, mash the cauliflower leaving some chunks. Boil the broccoli until tender and drain it. Add this to the cauliflower along with the cream cheese, sour cream, chives, garlic powder, salt & pepper, 3 TBSP margarine, Laughing Cow, Italian cheese mix, and bacon bits. Stir until mixed, and pour into a sprayed 8x11 baking dish.
In another bowl, mix the remaining margarine, breadcrumbs, and cheddar until crumbly. Sprinkle this over the top of the veggies. Bake for 35 minutes until browned and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Spiced Cranberry Wheat Bread

I made this yesterday and it's amazing! Honestly, it tastes just like fall! I can't wait to make french toast with it this weekend! I got the recipe from a cooking magazine, and adapted it to MY needs.

Spiced Cranberry WW Bread P2

1 1/4 c water- hot from the tap
1/3 c honey
2 TBSP oil
1 1/2 tsp salt
3-3 1/2 c WW flour
1 TBSP pumpkin pie spice
1 pkg yeast
1 c dried cranberries (or cherries)
1 TBSP orange peel (I had none, so used 1 tsp orange extract)
1/4 c gluten

You can make this in a bread maker, but I used my big mixer to mix and knead the dough. When the dough is kneaded, turn it into a greased bowl and let it rise in the oven with the light on for an hour and a half or until doubled. You may want to put a pan of boiling water in there to keep it humid. Punch it down and form it into a loaf (I made a round loaf in a 2qt soufflé dish). Place it into a greased loaf pan and put it back in the oven to rise. Let rise one hour or until coming up oven the sides of the pan. Bake at 375 for 35-40 minutes. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then remove and cool on a rack.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Chicken and Dumplings

Okay, who doesn't get images of Grandma making this in the kitchen on a chilly winter evening? I got the base of this recipe from a friend of a friend and added dumplings instead of making potpie, and I think mine is better! (Shhhh! Don't tell Julie!) Now, I admit, this version is a little different from what I've made in years past. I always used Bisquik and now I use Hodgson Mills Insta-Bake. The flavor is different, but if it means we can still have this meal then we can adjust! Try this and let me know what you think!

Chicken and Dumplings P2 (P3 if concerned about the potatoes)

4lb chicken, skinned and giblets removed (if there)
6qts water
Celery leaves
½ pound carrots, cut into large dice
1 baseball-sized red potato, peeled and cut into large dice (can omit, but not right!)
3 stalks celery, chopped
6 shrooms, chopped
½ large onion, chopped
1 cup peas
1-2 tsp poultry seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp salt (sounds like a lot, but trust me!)
1 ½ cups WW baking mix (I use Insta-Bake)
¾ cup skim milk
Fresh parsley if desired

Place the chicken, water, and celery leaves in a large stock pot, and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer uncovered for an hour. Remove chicken and cool until you can handle it. Strain the broth and place back in the pot. Remove chicken meat from the bones, discard the bones and put the meat back in the pot. Cook this on low two hours uncovered to reduce somewhat.
About an hour before serving time, finish the soup. Add the carrots, potatoes, and celery. Saute in another pan the shrooms and onions just until softened, add those to the pot. Stir in the seasonings and half the salt. Simmer about 30 minutes, until veggies are tender.
In a bowl, mix gently the baking mix and milk to form a dough. Drop by rounded large spoonfuls into the simmering broth. Cover and cook 10 minutes. With a slotted spoon, turn the dumplings over and then add the peas and parsley. Cover and cook another 10 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the dumplings comes out clean. Check broth for seasoning, adding remaining salt if needed.

Friday, September 15, 2006

Italian "Beef" with Penne

I got a new cookbook recently- The Good Carb Cookbook. It is chock full of delicious recipes! This was the first thing I had tried, and we will definitely have it again! It called for just ground beef, but I used half beef and half turkey then added in some leftover sweet sausage. I also added mushrooms because, well, everything is better with shrooms! I of course changed some of the amounts just a tad- more garlic, used penne instead of bowties...

Itailan Beef with Penne P2

1 pound ground beef or mix of beef and turkey, browned and drained
1 small onion, chopped
6 large shrooms, sliced
5 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
1/2 cup beef broth
1 quart home-canned tomatoes
1/2 cup tomato paste
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp oil
8 oz cooked penne or other WW pasta
3/4 cup shredded Itailan cheese or parmesan

Heat a large saucepan over medium heat until hot, add the oil. Saute the onion, shrooms, and garlic until softened, about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour in the broth and simmer 5 minutes until alomst evaporated, then stir in the paste and canned tomatoes. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and add the spices. Add in the meat, and simmer 10 minutes adjusting for salt if needed. Remove from heat and add the pasta, tossing to coat.
When you serve this, sprinkle a generous amount of cheese on top!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

5:4 Take 8! Thai Shrimp and Apple Snow Peas

As soon as I said apples, I began to get ideas. Then they all flew straight out of my head! This came back tho, and was truly a creative meal for my family. We all liked it, tho hubby is NOT a fan of pineapple. He still ate tons of shrimp! Can't wait to see what Danielle and Laurie came up with...

Thai Pineapple Shrimp with Bean Threads P2

1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 cup frozen pineapple chunks
1 tsp oil
½ can lite coconut milk
½ tsp basil
1 tsp salt
½ a package of bean thread noodles
½ cup toasted WW breadcrumbs

For the bean threads- Heat a saucepan of water until boiling, remove from heat. Place the nests of noodles in the water, and let them soak for 10 minutes. Drain, and toss with oil if desired. (I just placed them on the plate right out of the water)
In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Add the pineapple chunks and sauté until nicely browned (about 10 minutes), stirring occasionally. Add the coconut milk, basil, and salt, and bring to a boil. Toss in the shrimp, and “poach” them in the milk. The milk will thicken and reduce creating a creamy sauce for the shrimp. Cook about 5 minutes or until the shrimp is all pink.
Spoon the shrimp, pineapple, and sauce over the noodles. Top with the toasted breadcrumbs for crunch!

Apple Snow Peas P2

2 cups snow peas, trimmed
8 oz apple juice (no sugar added)

In a sauté pan, heat the apple juice over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce the juice to a scant tablespoon (this takes about 5-7 minutes, watch it carefully!). Throw in the peas, and toss to coat. Cook over medium heat about 3 minutes, just to barely soften the peas. Serve!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

5:4 take 7- Chicken Fried "Rice" with Sesame Green Beans

This one was really tough for me. Everything I kept coming up with was a boring, "standard" type of meal. I wanted exciting and different! This is what I finally came up with, and it was pretty good! I can't wait to see what the other two came up with!

Chicken Fried "Rice" P1

1 large head cauliflower, cored
1 pound broccoli florets
2 pounds chicken thighs, boneless and skinless, cut into small cubes
2 eggs, beaten with 3 TBSP water
2 TBSP mushroom-flavored soy sauce
2 TBSP oyster sauce
3 TBSP oil

Using a large-holed grater, shred the cauliflower. Set this aside.
Heat a large wok over high heat. Swirl in 1 tbsp oil. Add half the chicken, stir-frying until it is browned and cooked thru. Remove it and finish with remaining chicken. Then quickly stirfry the broccoli for a few minutes to barely cook it. Remove and wipe the wok clean.
Reheat the wok and add 1 tbsp oil. Cook eggs stirring occasionally until done, remove. Wipe the wok clean.
Heat it again and add another tbsp oil. Cook the cauliflower 5 minutes until it begins to soften. Then stir in the oyster sauce, chicken, and soy sauce. Toss together. Top with the broccoli and serve.

Sesame Green Beans P1

1 pound frozen or fresh green beans
2 TBSP mushroom-flavored soy sauce
1 TBSp oil
1 TBSP sesame seeds

Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a saute pan. Add beans and saute covered 5-7 minutes or until desired doneness. Stir in soy sauce, let caramelize. Remove to platter and top with sesame seeds.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Chicken Cordon Bleu and Fixin's!

We LOVE Chicken Cordon Bleu. I LOVE asparagus (can you tell???). A match made in heaven! I made the Mock Hollandaise sauce to top them, and it was just the right flavor!

Chicken Cordon Bleu P1

Thin sliced chicken breast, one slice per person
2 slices ham per breast
1 slice Imported Emmenthaler Swiss per breast

Very simple. Bake the chicken for 5 minutes at 425. Top with two pieces folded ham then the cheese. Broil for 10 minutes until cheese browns.

Mock Hollandaise P1

1 egg or 1/4 cup egg substitute
1 tbsp spread
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp dijon mustard

I double this because I love it so much!
Melt the spread in a measuring cup in the microwave. Whisk in the egg or sub, lemon juice, and mustard. Heat in the microwave for 1-2 minutes on low heat stirring every 15-20 seconds until thickened.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006


I got this recipe from my new cookbook "The Good Carb Cookbook". This is an oatbran crust, and it's fabulous! Even the kiddo liked it, and he HATES ww pizza crust! He ate five pieces...

Oatbran Pizza Crust P2

1 1/2-2 C WW flour
1/2 C oatbran
1 package rapid rise yeast
3/4 C very warm water
1 tsp honey (it said sugar, I used honey)
pinch salt
3 TBSP dry milk powder

I used my big mixer for this-
Put half the flour, all of the oatbran, the salt, and dry milk powder in the mixer and make sure it's mixed. In another bowl dissolve the yeast in the water with the honey. When it foams, slowly add the water mixture into the flour mixture with the mixer going. When the dough begins to form, add the last of the flour slowly. Let the mixer knead the dough until it pulls away from the sides of the bowl (about 3-5 minutes). Turn off the mixer and remove the dough to a greased bowl. Cover and let rise in a warm place 30-45 minutes until nearly doubled. Punch dough down and turn out onto your lightly-greased pizza pan. Pat or roll the dough out onto the pan. Let rest/rise 15 minutes.

Top with desired pizza toppings- I used homemade tomato sauce with herbs, chopped Canadian bacon, green pepper, onion, shrooms, and turkey pepperoni. Bake at 425 for 15-20 minutes until crust is browned around the edges and toppings are browning! YUMMY!

Monday, September 04, 2006

"Chantal's Chicken" with more Asparagus Bundles, Brussels, and Cauliflower

Tonight I had to have more of those asparagus bundles- they were so good! I broiled these for about 7 minutes on each side, but that may need to be more for thicker stalks. The cauliflower was just steamed frozen stuff, and the brussels were just boiled frozen ones (cooked in double-strength chicken broth with some bacon bits). The chicken I got from a friend several years ago. It's usually slow baked, but today I used my new fabulous crockpot! Worked just fine, but the bacon didn't crisp so I didn't show any in this picture.

"Chantal's" Chicken P1

1 B/S chicken breast per person
1/2 cup SF maple syrup
1/2 cup SF ketchup
1/4 tsp cloves or 6 whole cloves
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
2 strips bacon per breast
1 sliced onion

In the bottom of the crockpot or baking dish place the breasts in one layer. Put the bacon on top of each one, then a few slices of onion.
In a bowl, combine the remaining ingredients and pour over the chicken. Cover and bake at 300 for 2 hours or cook on high in the crockpot for 3 hours, basting often.

This is VERY simple, and very delicious!

Creamy Crusty Broccoli

This is a side dish I threw together last minute.

I used frozen broccoli, cooked.
Toss this with 2 TBSP spread of your choice and place into a baking dish. Mix together 1 cup shredded sharp cheddar and 1/4 cup WW bread crumbs, and sprinkle this over the broccoli.

Broil 4-5 inches from the element/flame for about 5 minutes or until nicely browned!
Very simple and very delicious.

Filet, Sweet Potatoes, and Asparagus Bundles

This isn't so much a recipe, as it is what I threw together last night.

I peeled, quartered, and sliced one sweet potato and tossed it with olive oil, salt, and pepper. I put it in a foil "pouch" and roasted it over the flame of the grill for 30 minutes. We top ours with FF sour cream- YUMMY!
I then seasoned my last two ( :( ) beef filet steaks with salt and pepper and grilled them to medium-rare perfection.
I also seasoned two bundles of asparagus (these happened to be super-thin) with salt and pepper, and wrapped them in one slice each of bacon and grilled them along with the steaks. These were incredible! I am going to try broiling them tonight...

Sunday, August 27, 2006

5:4 take 6! Pork Scaloppini w/ Squash Primavera

This installment of 5:4 was quite a challenge for me! My family does not like squash, and I have only had spaghetti squash once before- with mixed feelings. This dish is not terribly "inspired", but it was wonderful nonetheless! I can't wait to see what the other two chefs came up with! Check 5:4 for their dishes. Catherine- We wish you tons of luck in law school, and miss you already! 5:4 will be one short until your return!

Pork Scaloppini With Spaghetti Squash Primavera P1

1 pork tenderloin, thinly sliced
½ spaghetti squash, cooked and separated into strands
1 eggplant, peeled and cubed
1 quart tomatoes with Italian seasoning (home-canned)
6 large button mushrooms, thinly sliced
1 onion, chopped
5 cloves garlic, pressed
¼ cup toasted pine nuts
Salt & Pepper
Olive oil

In a colander in the sink toss the eggplant with 1 tsp salt, let sit 15 minutes. Rinse well and squeeze the eggplant cubes to extract any extra water.
In a large sauté pan, heat 1 TBSP oil over medium heat until hot. Add in the eggplant, mushrooms, and onions and sauté for 10 minutes until everything has released its moisture. Add in garlic and cook another 3-5 minutes, stirring often. Pour tomatoes into pan, reduce heat, and simmer uncovered for 10-15 minutes until sauce has thickened slightly. Toss with the squash strands.
Toss the pork with salt and pepper and sauté over medium-high heat in a nonstick pan. Cook about 10 minutes until no longer pink.
I plated this with the pork on the bottom, then the vegetable mixture, then topped it with the toasted pine nuts. Would also be good with a nice dusting of fresh grated Parmesan cheese!

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Hens in the Crock Pot

I got a new crockpot a month ago and have only used it once. Awful, huh? Looking thru my crockpot cookbook the other night, I found this recipe. I added carrots, but otherwise did it right as the recipe said (proud of me Danielle?).

Hens in Herb Wine Sauce P1

1 game hen per person
1/2 cup beef broth
1/2 cup white wine
1 tsp dried thyme leaves
5 garlic cloves, pressed or chopped
3 tbsp chopped bacon (approx. 2 slices cooked and crumbled)
1 onion sliced
2 tbsp flour (I used soy flour)
salt and pepper

Toss the hens with the flour and S&P. Place the onion slices into the bottom of the crock, and put the hens on top. Mix the broth, wine, thyme, and garlic and pour over the hens. Cook on low for 8 hours.

I added a pound of baby carrots at the beginning(which would make this P2), and a then for the last 30 minutes added a bunch of fresh asparagus. This was excellent with some brown rice!

Friday, August 18, 2006

Grilled Dinner

I didn't realize how long it had been since I posted!
This is what we ate tonight. It was pretty simple, except for the artichokes. Very tasty tho!

Grilled Dinner P1

1 pound sirloin steak
2 fresh artichokes
1 quart water w/ lemon juice or white wine vinegar
1 sweet onion, sliced
6 shrooms, sliced
Newman's Own Lite Balsamic Vinagrette

Marinate the steak in some of the vinagrette.
Prepare the 'chokes by peeling the stems and removing the lower several layers of leaves. Cut off the top 1/3 and plunge the artichokes into the acidic water for 10 minutes to prevent browning. Drain and cut them in half. Using a grapefruit spoon (or something sharp like one), remove the fuzzy choke and any purple tipped leaves. Steam them for 10-15 minutes until a knife goes in easily. Remove and toss gently with more of the vinagrette and let marinate. Add the broccolini as well.
Heat the grill over high flames for 10 minutes, then add the steak and veggies. Grill for 3-4 minutes, then flip everything. Grill another 6 minutes or so until meat is desired doneness.
While the meat rests, saute the shrooms and onions until caramelized, then top the steaks with them!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

5:4 Challenge Take 5!!

This time the ingredients were:
tomato sauce
This was something I had thought about since the ingredients were first chosen, and luckily it was as good as I thought it would be! I am curios to see what my fellow chefs came up with for their own dishes! This was so simple and took maybe 20 from start to finish!

Sausage and Peppers with Lentils and CousCous P2

One each green and orange bell peppers, sliced into strips
One onion, cut into wedges and separated
One package Benetino's Cabernet and Asiago Sausages, sliced
One small can Roasted Garlic Seasoned Tomato Sauce
Eight large button mushrooms, sliced
One package Roasted Garlic CousCous, prepared with water and olive oil
One can lentils, drained and rinsed or 1 cup prepared lentils
Olive oil
Salt & Pepper
Fresh chopped parsley

Heat oil in a large saute pan until hot, then add the veggies. Saute over medium-high heat for about 7 minutes or until they begin to soften slightly. Toss in the sausage and cook another 5 minutes to warm it. Add in the lentils and sauce, cook for another couple minutes to warm. Salt and pepper if desired.
Plate with a scoop of couscous, and sprinkle the top liberally with chopped parsley.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Chicken and Asparagus Sandwich with Spinach and Tomato

This is my redo for the most recent 5:4 challenge. I wasn't pleased with the sauce from the other one! This turned out very delicious, I highly recommend it! I must tell you, this recipe was entirely my hubby Joe's idea! He hates to cook, but "makes" a killer sandwich!

Chicken and Asparagus Sandwich with Spinach and Tomato P2

1 boneless, skinless chicken thigh
2 tbsp Newman's Own Olive Oil and Vinegar Dressing
asparagus spears
baby spinach leaves
2 slices multigrain bread
dijon mustard
garlic clove
sliced tomato

Marinate the chicken in the dressing for about 6 hours. Drain chicken and place on broiler pan. Broil 2 inches from heat for 5 minutes, then flip. Add the asparagus to the broiler pan and continue broiling 10 minutes more, turning the asparagus every few minutes.
Toast the bread and rub a cut garlic clove over the warm slices. Spread with dijon mustard.
Slice the chicken into thin slices and layer on the bread with the asparagus, spinach, and tomato slices. Top with the other slice and EAT!!!

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

5:4 take three- Huevos Rancheros with Cumin-Roasted Cauliflower

Okay, so for the third installment for 5:4, I came up with this breakfast. I have honestly never had heuvos rancheros, so I have no idea how this compares! I know it is served on a tortilla, but I wanted to use cumin and salsa as my extras so I skipped it! I did also add some extra cilantro to the salsa because, well, I LOVE cilantro!!! I have to tell you, this was absolutely delicious!

Huevos Rancheros with Cumin Roasted Cauliflower P1

1 can refried beans (I made homemade ones- boiled the pintos 2 hours, then mashed with some of the cooking liquid and cumin), heated
1 pork tenderloin, very thinly sliced
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
1 head cauliflower, separated into florets
2 eggs per person
Sour cream

In a large zipper bag, combine the sliced pork with 1 tsp oil, a good amount of salt and pepper, and cumin to taste. Toss well and marinate in the fridge several hours.
In a large bowl, toss the cauliflower florets with 2 tbsp oil, lots of salt and pepper, and about 2 tsp cumin (more if you want it spicy). Pour out into a large baking pan and roast at 400 degrees for 30-40 minutes, stirring occasionally, until well browned and cooked.
Heat a nonstick pan over medium-high heat, adding 1 tsp oil. Stir-fry the pork until done and nicely browned, about 10 minutes.
Fry the eggs as desired- I prefer over-medium.On the plate, place a large dollop of beans on one side and top with some pork. On the pork, place the eggs and top them with salsa, chopped cilantro, and sour cream. On the other side of the plate, put a good amount of cauliflower.

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Bacon Tomato Chicken

This is my adaptation of George Stella's Chicken with Bacon, Tomato, and Thyme. This was wonderful served with roasted sweet potato and green beans.

Bacon Tomato Chicken P1

1 BS chicken breast per person
3 slices bacon per breast
2 roma tomatoes, sliced thick
1 Vidalia onion, sliced thick
Salt & Pepper
Ground thyme

Sprinkle the chicken with the salt, pepper, and thyme and place in a roasting pan. Top each breast with sliced tomato and onion, then top them with the bacon slices. Roast at 400 degrees for 30 minutes or until done. I sprinkled the top with chopped fresh tomato.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Lava Cake!

These could be my fave dessert on the planet! Who knew you could make them (almost) SB-friendly!? But with a few adjustments, they are just as good as the original. I served mine with a simple Raspberry Coulis and Cool Whip.

Lava Cakes P2

8Tbs Fleishman's Olive Oil Spread
2 tsp. soy flour
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate bar, chopped
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1/4 c. Splenda

Preheat the oven to 450.
While oven is heating, spray 4 4oz molds or small ramekins with cooking spray microwave the butter, be sure to place something over the top, butter pops. While butter is melting Beat together the eggs, yolk and sugar until creamy yellow Take the butter out of the microwave and add the chocolate. Stir until the chips have melted. Pour chocolate into the egg mixture and stir to combine. Add the flour and stir. Pour into prepared dishes. Bake 6-8 minutes until the sides have set but the middle is still soft. Invert on plate, wait 10 seconds, unmold by lifting up one corner of the mold. You may want to run a knife around the inside of the ramekin before inverting it.

Raspberry Coulis P2

One bag frozen raspberries
1/4 cup Splenda

Empty a bag of frozen raspberries into a saucepan and add about 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil and then simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes. Strain it, then simmer for another 10 minutes or until it gets syrupy. Add about 1/4 cup sweetener and stir it well. Pour into a small container and chill.
Mine made about 1/2 cup. You really only use maybe 2 tsp per cake!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Rainbow Tuna Salad

I wanted to make something for the challenge with both fresh AND canned tuna. This is what I came up with for the canned- and it's so good!!!

Rainbow Tuna Salad P1

1 large pouch tuna
3 tbsp mayo
Salt & pepper
Bell peppers, any color(s), cut into strips
Endive leaves
Celery stalks
Mushrooms, sliced
1 lime
Olive oil

Mix the tuna and mayo with some pepper to make the tuna mix, if desired stir in some chopped celery.
Assemble on the plate in a spoke-pattern the pepper strips, celery stalks, and endive leaves. Put sliced mushrooms around the middle, and top with a large scoop of tuna mix.
For the dressing, whisk together the juice of the lime with some oil until it emulsifies, then add salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle a little over the tuna and veggies!

Zesty Tuna Skewers with Sweet and Sour Celery and Brown Rice

I was really stressed thinking about what to do with the celery! I had the rest of the ingredients pretty well planned when we started. The it hit me! It sounds bizarre. but really it was an incredible pairing!

Zesty Tuna Skewers With Sweet and Sour Celery P1

1 pound tuna steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
Bell peppers (any color) cut into large cubes
2 Limes
Olive oil
Salt & pepper
Celery (about 4 large stalks)
2 tbsp Splenda

Preheat your grill over very high heat.
Mix together the juice of one lime, salt and pepper, and 3 tbsp oil.
Thread the tuna onto a skewer, and thread the veggies on another one or two. Sprinkle the tuna well with pepper.
Place the veggie skewers on the grill. Baste them with the lime mixture. Grill over high heat for 5 minutes, and then turn them. Cook another 5 minutes.
Now put the tuna skewers on, and baste them with the lime mixture. Grill over high heat for 3 minutes, turn and cook another 3 minutes. Remove to platter.
Serve on a bed of brown rice and Sweet & Sour Celery!

For the celery:
Slice the celery on the bias into ½ inch thick slices. Sauté them in 1 tbsp olive oil for 3 minutes, stirring almost constantly. Add the juice of the other and Splenda, and stir well to mix. Cook another couple minutes to begin to caramelize the celery.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Homemade Spaghetti Sauce

This is the sauce I used for the lasagna!

Homemade Spaghetti Sauce P1

4 LBS roma tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 small eggplant, peeled and chopped
2 small onions, chopped
1 small green pepper, seeded and chopped
4 small carrots, shredded
1 29oz can concentrated crushed tomatoes
3 tbsp dried basil
2 tbsp dried oregano
2 tbsp chopped garlic
2 tbsp olive oil

Heat the oil in a heavy 4-quart pot. Sauté the veggies and garlic for about 10 minutes to soften them. Then add in the tomatoes and canned tomatoes, stir well. Add the dried herbs and stir.
Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat and cover. Cook covered for about an hour, stirring every 15 minutes. Uncover and cook another hour on low (barely simmering).
Ladle into freezer containers, or use within 3 days!Makes about 2.5 quarts.


I made the yummiest lasagna tonight! Paired with a wonderful Fetzer Cab, it was a divine meal!

Lasagna P2

6 WW lasagna noodles, partially cooked
1 15 oz container light ricotta
1 tbsp each dried oregano and basil
1 tsp garlic powder
1 egg
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 package shredded Italian cheese
1/2 cup frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 quart homemade sauce

Mix together ricotta, egg, spices, parmesan, spinach, and a handful of the shredded cheese. Spread a cup of the sauce in the bottom of a 8 x 11 pan, and top with a layer of noodles. spread some ricotta mix over the noodles, then pour more sauce over that. Sprinkle shredded cheese on this, and repeat the layers.
Bake at 350 for an hour, covering the top with foil if it browns too quickly. Let sit 15 minutes before cutting.

Special THANKS!!!

I just want to say a special THANKS to Laurie. Since updating my Internet Explorer, I have been unable to post any pictures on this or the 5:4 blog. Laurie has been wonderful and has posted all of my pictures for me for the last two weeks! She deserves a great big hug!

Thanks L!!!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Cinnamon Apple "Pudding" Cake

This is so amazingly good! I got the recipe from the Food Network site, then tweaked it to make it SB-friendly. I hope you can try it soon!

Cinnamon Apple “Pudding” Cake P2

¾ cup water
¼ cup SF maple syrup (try using flavored ones?)
2 tbsp spread
¾ cup DiabetiSweet Brown Sugar Substitute
2 tbsp melted spread
1 cup evaporated skim milk
2 cups WW pastry flour
1/3 cup DiabetiSweet Brown Sugar Substitute
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
2 Granny Smith apples, shredded (not peeled)

Preheat oven to 350.
Combine all of the topping ingredients in a glass measuring cup and heat in the microwave until it boils. Remove and cool a bit while mixing the cake.
In a large mixing bowl, stir the flour, sugar substitute, baking powder, and cinnamon. In another small bowl, stir the milk and melted spread together. Stir the wet into the dry until just mixed, and then add the apples.
Pour cake batter into a sprayed 8 x 11 pan, smoothing the top. Gently pour the topping over the cake, but DO NOT STIR.
Bake for 45 minutes. Serve warm with whipped topping or ice cream!

Friday, July 21, 2006

Tequila Chicken, Refried Black Beans, and Carrot Pepper Salad

Tonight we had a fiesta! The chicken was marinated for the entire day, but was not overly boozed-up. It was perfect! The salad came about from a suggestion from friend Laurie (her blog is here). The beans were simply cooked black beans and canned tomatoes smashed in a pan and "fried" for a few minutes to reheat.

Tequila Chicken P1

1 chicken breast per person
1/2 cup tequila
1/2 cup chopped onion
2 chopped scallions
1 tbsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp taco seasoning
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup shredded cheddar

Mix all together but cheese in a large zipper bag and marinate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
Preheat grill to high. Grill breasts over high heat uncovered, 5 minutes the first side, then flip and cook 5 minutes more. Top with cheese, turn of the burner underneath, and cover the grill for about 3-5 minutes or until the cheese melts.
Serve with pico de gallo and sour cream!

Simple Pico De Gallo P1

1 cup chopped tomatoes
2 minced jalapenos
3 chopped scallions
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
dash lime juice

Mix all together and let sit on the counter at least an hour for flavors to meld.

Carrot Pepper Salad P2

2 cups sliced or shredded carrot
1/2 green pepper, thinly sliced
1/4 cup mayo
1/4 cup milk
1 tbsp ranch powder

Mix the mayo, milk, and powder together. Toss in the carrots and peppers, and mix well. Refrigerate at least an hour to thicken the dressing.
We think this would be great with halved cherry or grape tomatoes and or cukes added to it!

Smothered Chicken Parmesan "Sandwich" by Catherine

I tried the chicken and eggplant dish my fellow "FourChefs" chef Catherine made. WOW! Even my picky six-year old liked it! I did serve it with noodle, but only becaue the boys in the house would have rioted! Everyone MUST try this! Her blog is here.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Bourbon and Cola Roast w/ Roasted Sweet Potatoes

WOW! All I can say is WOW! This was SO GOOD!

Bourbon And Cola Roast P1

2lb chuck roast
1 can diet cola
3-4 oz bourbon (I used 5!)
1 tbsp olive oil
6 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp worchestershire
1 tbsp soy sauce
pinch ground allspice

Mix all together in a bag and marinate in the fridge for several hours.
Preheat the grill with all burners on high.
Sear the meat for 5 minutes on all sides, then tunr the heat down to medium. Continue to cook the meat over medium with the grill covered for 15-20 minutes depending on the thickness. Cook until it reaches 135 on a thermometer (for medium rare, 145 for medium). Remove from the grill, place in a pan, and cover with foil to rest for 10 minutes. Then slice thinly and serve!

Roasted Sweet Potatoes P2

one sweet potato per person
olive oil
salt and pepper

Cut the potato into one inch pieces, toss with remaining ingredients. Put in heavy skillet and place over indirect heat on the grill (or roast at 450 for 1 hour). Cover and roast on grill for 45 minutes or until very soft. Top with sour cream!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Four Chefs Challenge Dish

I have been dying to post this for days! Please check the other variations my fellow chefs created at the link at right- Four Chefs!

Eggplant and Chicken with Pepper Cream Sauce P2

1 Japanese or other small eggplant, sliced ¼ inch thick lengthwise
2 small bell peppers, I used one purple and one green, seeded and chopped
2 ¼ cups milk (it must have some fat, I used whole)
½ cup Parmesan cheese
4 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
1-cup WW breadcrumbs
2 tsp garlic powder
Salt and pepper
¼ cup olive oil

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a saucepan, bring the 2 cups milk, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, pepper, and the chopped peppers to a simmer, then lower the heat and cover to steep.
In two dishes, place the ¼ cup milk in one and the breadcrumbs in the other. Sprinkle remaining garlic powder into the breadcrumbs, along with some salt and pepper; mix thoroughly. Dip the eggplant into the milk, then the crumbs pushing to coat. Set them aside and repeat with the chicken.
In a heavy sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of oil over medium heat until hot. Fry the eggplant slices for 3 minutes on the first side, then flip and fry 2 more minutes. Remove them to paper towels to drain. Place the slices on a baking sheet and sprinkle with 2 tbsp Parmesan cheese. Place the baking sheet in the oven while you finish.
Wipe out the sauté pan and add remaining oil. Fry the chicken in the same manner, 6 minutes on the first side then flip and cook 5 minutes on the second side. Strain the milk/peppers over the chicken, sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Cover and simmer for 7-10 minutes or until the chicken is done and the sauce thickens.
Serve over the eggplant slices.
I would recommend peeling the eggplant. I didn’t and it was a bit crispy!

Friday, July 14, 2006

Grill Roasted Chicken and all the fixin's!

I roasted this chicken on the grill tonight. Sorry I didn't get a pic of it before I cut into it- the guys were hungry! I threw some applewood chips in my little grill-top smoker box and they flavored it quite well! The green beans are from my garden. I sauteed them with some onions, then threw on some red wine vinegar and Stevia Plus. Toss and they're done! This went very well with a nice Pinot Noir.

"Roasted" Chicken P1

one roasting chicken, about 5 pounds
Applewood chips
olive oil

Preheat grill to about 350 degrees.
Rinse the chicken and pat dry. I have an upright roasting rack, so I placed mine on that. Rub with the oil and season if desired.
Turn off the center burner on your grill, if you have a three burner grill! If not, turn off one side and just use the off side. Place chicken on or off your roaster on the unlit side. Throw some smoke chips onto the lit side. Close the grill and cook for about 30 minutes. Turn the chicken, and cook for another 30-45 minutes or until it reads 165 degrees.
Remove to a platter and let sit for 15 minutes.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Chinese Night!

Tonight we had Chinese night for dinner- Sweet and Sour Pork and Chicken, Brown Rice, and Eggrolls. Everything was delicious!Yes, the eggrolls and meat were fried, but I measured the oil after it cooled and I was only "missing" about 1/4 cup- and you know most of that had to end up on the newspaper and paper towels! Besides, it's not going to kill us to do this once a month...

Sweet & Sour Pork and Chicken P2

6 cups cubed boneless skinless chicken thigh and pork sirloin- smaller than 1 inch cubes
2 TBSP soy sauce
5 TBSP arrowroot powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar substitute
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup water
1 bell pepper, cubed
1 carrot, sliced thin
oil for frying

Mix meats, soy sauce, 3 TBSP arrowroot, and baking soda together well. Marinate in the fridge for 2 hours.
In a small saucepan mix juice, vinegar, sugar substitute, ketchup, and water. Bring this to a boil, then turn down to low, cover to keep warm.
Heat 2 inches oil in a wok or heavy skillet. When hot add in the meat a little at a time, cooking in batches. Make sure to separate the pieces so they don't stick together! Cook the meat about 5 minutes or until it is deep brown and cooked through. Drain the meat on paper towels or newspaper.
When all the meat is done, remove all but 2 TBSP oil from the pan and heat again. Add in the peppers and carrots, sand stirfry for a minute or two. Toss the meat back in the pan.
Mix the remaining 2 TBSP arrowroot with 2 TBSP water and pour it into the sauce mixture. Pour the sauce over the meat and veggies and bring back to a boil. Mix thorouhgly and serve! Serves 4

Eggrolls P2

one bag cole slaw mix
2 TBSP oyster sauce
2 TBSP lite teriyaki sauce
4 mushrooms, finely chopped
8 eggrolls wrappers
2 TBSP water in a small bowl
oil for frying

In a skillet, heat 1 TBSP oil over medium heat. Add in slaw mix and shrooms. Stirfry for about 10 minutes or until the veggies have given all their liquid and it has evaporated. Then stir in the sauces, mixing well. Remove to a bowl and cool.
When cooled, place one wrapper on work surface in a diamond shape and wet the top tip and sides. Using an ice cream scoop, scoop filling onto the middle of the wrapper. Bring the bottom up over the filling, pulling firmly. Roll half way, then tuck in each side over the middle. Finish rolling to the top. Set aside and filling remaining wrappers.
Heat 2 inches oil in a heavy skillet or wok to pretty hot! Carefully place an eggroll into the hot oil, followed by another one (fry two at a time). Fry 3 minutes on the first side, then turn over and fry 2 more minutes. Remove and drain on paper towels or newspaper. Serves 4

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Cream Puffs

Catherine asked if I thought one could make a SB-friendly version of the classic cream puff. Well, with a little tweaking from another friend and myself here's what we came up with!

Cream Puffs P2

2 packages instant vanilla pudding mix (I used one each of chocolate fudge and banana)
2 cups skim milk
1/2 cup butter (I used Fleishman's Olive Oil Spread)
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour (I used WW pastry flour)
3 eggs
2 egg yolks

Mix together vanilla instant pudding mix and milk. If using two different kinds, mix in separate bowls! Cover and refrigerate to set.
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
In a large pot, bring water and butter to a rolling boil. Stir in flour and salt until the mixture forms a ball. Transfer the dough to a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon or stand mixer, beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each. Drop by tablespoonfuls onto an ungreased baking sheet. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Centers should be dry. When the shells are cool, either split and fill them with the pudding mixture, or use a pastry bag to pipe the pudding into the shells.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Brat Supper

I have made this dinner for years, but I think the changes I made to make it SB-friendly have really improved it! I replaced the new potatoes with sweet and added green beans fresh from the garden and brussels sprouts. This is also great with mushrooms added, but I didn't have any left. Delicious!

Brat Supper P2

One package brats, each cut into fourths
three large handfuls baby carrots
1/2 pound sprouts, trimmed
one red onion, cut into slivers
one pound fresh green beans, trimmed
one large sweet potato, cut into one inch pieces
2 tbsp beef boullion granules (or one packet French Onion soup mix)
1/2 cup water
Preheat grill to about 400 degrees. Turn all burners down to low (for charcoal grill, move most of coals to sides.
Toss all ingredients together. pour into a large broiler pan or foil roasting pan, spreading it out evenly. Cover with foil and place on grill rack. Cover grills, and roast for 30 minutes. Stir the meat and veggies, discarding foil. Cover grill again and roast for another 20-30 minutes or until sweet potato is fully cooked.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Coconut Chicken and Poppers

I know I posted the Coconut Shrimp before, but tonight I did it with chicken breast strips. It was wonderful! I will repost the recipe with the changes I made. I also made Jalapeno Poppers with peppers straight from our garden. I'm going to post that one too! It's a two-for-one special!!!

Coconut Chicken P2

2 chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch wide strips
1/4 cup WW flour
1/4 cup WW bread crumbs
1/3 cup dried unsweetened coconut (medium cut?)
2 eggs
2 tbsp fructose
pinch of salt
1/2 tsp chili sauce with garlic
1 tbsp dark rum
1/4 cup SF apricot preserves
1/4 cup oil (yeah, but you really don't get much staying on the chicken)
Break egg into bowl, beat well. In another large bowl, mix the coconut meat, fructose, salt, and the bread crumbs. Put the flour in a baggie. Toss the chicken in the bag to coat with the flour. Then wet the chicken with the egg, and toss into the coconut mixture. Set this aside (do this in small batches). To make the sauce, mix the chili sauce, rum, and the apricot preserves. Bring this to a boil, remove from the heat, and set aside. In a large frying pan, heat the oil over med-high heat until really hot. Add the chicken in batches (I did two batches), cooking 3 minutes on the first side and 2 on the second or until nicely browned. Remove to paper towels, and finish with the rest of the chicken. Cook until temp reaches 165 inside the meat.

Poppers P2

10 Fresh jalapenos, stem on
8 oz cream cheese, softened
3 strips bacon, cooked until crisp, chopped
1 tsp each onion powder, garlic powder, and chili powder
1/2 cup shredded cheddar
1/4 cup WW bread crumbs
Heat oven to 350 degrees.
Slice the peppers in half lengthwise, leaving the stem intact, and remove the seeds and membranes. Mix the remaining ingredients except bread crumbs until well blended. Mound filling into each pepper half, then push cheese-side down into the bread crumbs to coat. Place in a large baking dish and bake for 30-45 minutes depending on the heat level desired (shorter for hotter, longer for mellower).

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Filet meal!

You guys keep saying to post- well here was our dinner tonight!

We had grilled filet mignon with grilled onions, mushrooms, and broccolini along with carrots and green beans. It was delicious! And no, there were NO leftovers of the meat...

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


Yeah, that was my thought-

How can you eat doughnuts on South Beach?
Well, here's the recipe. I can definitely say these are outstanding!

Whole Wheat Doughnuts P2
1 c plus 2 T whole wheat pastry flour
3/4 t baking soda
3 t cinnamon
1/8 t salt
1/4 c sweetner of choice (I used 3 TBSP fructose)
Mix all of this together with whisk and then in another bowl-
1/3 c applesauce
1/3 c ff buttermilk
1 large egg
1 1/2 t vanilla (I forgot this!)
add this to the dry ingredients and mix just until moistened I put this into a pan that makes doughnuts and bake them at 350 for about 12-13 minutes.

For the topping I mixed 2 tablespoons cream cheese (I had already sweetened with vanilla and Splenda) with 1 tablespoon SF strawberry jam and melted them together.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Snackers- Upscale Style!

This is for you, Catherine!

Brie Snackers

WW Saltine Crackers
Brie cheese, rind removed

Cut the pieces of Brie to fit the crackers. Nuke in microwave for 30 seconds until cheese poofs and melts all over. Drizzle with honey.

I bet these would be even better broiled! And I would have used Triscuits (less likely to get soggy), but I was out...

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Veggie fajitas!

I had these on vacation last year at a Cuban/BoHo place in Eureka Springs, AR. They were so good, I ate the veggies and completely forgot about the tortillas and toppings! So, when I came home I dreamt about then for almost a year. Then one day while chatting with DD, I decided to try and make them myself. Luckily, my first attempt was right on the money! They were so good, even though my grill was outta gas so I had to broil the veg. Here they are!

Veggie Fajitas P2
For the marinade-
6oz can of pineapple juice
half of a can of lite coconut milk
1/2 tsp Sweet-N-Low Brown (or for tidi_i, 1 tbsp Splenda )
1 tsp salt
one shot of REALLY dark rum

Portabello Mushrooms
Peppers- whatever color you like
Broccoli spears or broccolini

Leave the shrooms whole if you are going to grill them, otherwise slice into 1/4 inch slices. The peppers you can cut in half and remove the seeds if grilling, or slice if not. Onions, cut these in half. Marinate all of the veg in the liquid for at least 6 hours. Drain when ready to cook. Grill the veggies until nicely browned or really browned! If roasting them, use a big sheet pan and oil it well. Heat the oven to 500 degrees, or preheat the broiler. Spread the veg out on the pan and bake for 20 minutes or broil for 15 minutes until browned. If grilled, slice them right before serving with WW tortillas and normal fajita toppings.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Chicken Parmesan!

I will post the pic for now and come back for the recipe tomorrow!

Friday, May 19, 2006

Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

I have been wanting this for a year now. My rhubarb plants are producing this spring, and my strawberry-cup runneth over! Here is mine SB-friendly version of the classic pie:

Strawberry Rhubarb Pies P2
Makes 8 small pies or one 9 inch pie
1 1/2 cup WW pastry flour
1/3 cup canola
1/4 cup water
pinch salt
1/2 TBSP fructose
2 cups chopped rhubarb
2 cups strawberries, chopped (measure these before chopping)
1 1/2 TBSP cornstarch (not really SB, but didn't use much)
1/3 cup fructose
2 handfuls old-fashioned oats (maybe 1/2 cup?)
1/2 cup WW pastry flour
1/4 cup Fleishman's olive oil spread
2 TBSP fructose
1 TBSP SugarTwin Brown
Preheat oven to 425.
For the crust, mix the ingredients in a bowl and pat into the pie pans (or one 9 inch pan).
Mix the filling ingredients in the same bowl, and let them sit for 10 minutes while you make the topping.
Put all the topping ingredients in a food processor and pulse until well mixed. If you prefer, using a pastry blender, you can mix it by hand.
Scoop the filling into each pie crust- maybe 1/3 cup per pan? Top with the streusel. Bake at 425 for 7 minutes, then lower the temp to 350 and bake another 30-35 minutes, or until filling is bubbling and thickened. If the top browns too fast, loosely cover it with foil.

The filling is not as gooey as most pies, so if that's what you want then add up to 1/2 cup OJ or water. The topping did brown quickly, so you may want to wait and add it when you lower the oven temp.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Thai Beef With Green Beans

I have made this twice now, and it is better the next day- cold! It's a great salad!

Thai Beef with Green Beans

1 large steak, at least 1 inch thick (it calls for flank steak, I use top round steak. A more tender cut would be great!)
salt and pepper
olive oil
1/4 cup lime juice
1 TBSP fish sauce
1/2 cup thinly sliced scallions (I have always used minced sweet onion)
1/2 tsp chili paste
1 cup fresh chopped cilantro
fresh green beans, steamed just until crisp-tender

Rub the steak on both sides with the oil, and sprinkle well with salt and pepper. Grill over hot coals until medium-rare (you can cook it longer, but why would you???). Place it on a cutting board with grooves and set aside while you make the sauce.
Mix the lime juice, fish sauce, chili paste, onions, and cilantro. After the steak has rested for about 10 minutes, thinly slice it and toss the meat and it's juices with the sauce. Serve over the green beans. If you want it warm, heat the sauce first before tossing in the meat. It will cool off fast though!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Frosted Rhubarb Cookies

I get requests for these every year from my son. This year, I was afraid I wouldn't be able to eat them! They came out a little crumbly, so I will add applesauce for moisture next time. Here's how I have done it-

Frosted Rhubarb Cookies

1 C shortening (I used canola and will add some applesauce next time)
1 1/4 C packed brown sugar (used 2/3 cup SugarTwin Brown and 1/2 cup fructose)
2 eggs
3 C flour (ww pastry)
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 C diced rhubarb
3/4 C coconut (I always leave this out)
Cream shortening and sugar, then beat in the eggs. Combine flour, soda, and salt, gradually add this to creamed mixture. Stir in the rhubarb. Drop the dough by tablespoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet. (I use my small scoop from Pampered Chef) Bake at 350 degrees for 12-15 minutes until lightly browned. Cool completely on wire racks.
They are to be frosted with a cream cheese frosting.
3 oz softened cream cheese
1 TBSP butter, softened
3 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 C powdered sugar

Instead of this frosting, I did this-
1/4 cup softened LF cream cheese
1 cup milk, warmed to keep from seizing the cheese
1 package SF vanilla pudding mix
Whisk this together and top the cookies with it.

Monday, May 15, 2006

Spinach Goat Cheese Chicken

Okay CB, here's my pic of a dinner with goat cheese!

Spinach Goat Cheese Stuffed Chicken

4 boneless/skinless chicken breasts
1 container of Chavre Goat Cheese
1 C frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed
1 TBSP chopped garlic
2 TBSP sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
salt and pepper
olive oil

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Cut a pocket in each chicken breast or pound each one flat to about 1/2 inch thick, salt and pepper them. Mix the spinach, cheese, garlic, and tomatoes together. Using a pastry bag or large zipper bag with the corner cut off, pipe the mixture into the chicken pockets or onto half of a pounded breast. Secure the holes with toothpicks, folding the pounded ones over to enclose the cheese.
Heat the oil in an oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat until rippling. Add the chicken and sear on the first side for about 4 minutes, then flip them. Place the whole pan into the oven and bake for around 7-10 minutes or until the chicken is cooked thru, depending on the size of the pieces. When done, remove the chicken and pour any juices over it. Let it rest before eating.

I make a little pan sauce for this sometimes.
Pan Sauce
To the juices, add-
1/2 C chicken broth
1 TBSP sun-dried tomato/garlic mix

Bring to a boil scraping the pan to get the yummy stuck bits, and pour over the meat before serving.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Gnudi (Spinach Dumplings)

I got the recipe for these off the SB chat site I use. They are a Food Network recipe, made SB-friendly. Not bad! But they did need extra cheese! Even my hubby liked them...

1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese (I used light ricotta)
1 pound frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed dry (I used 2 cups frozen)
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 eggs
2 egg yolks
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour, plus 1 cup for coating (I used WW Pastry flour)
1 jar store bought marinara sauce, heated (I didn't heat it)
I added 1 cup Italian blend cheese
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. In a large bowl, mix ricotta, spinach, Parmesan cheese, eggs, and yolks. Stir in nutmeg, salt, pepper, and flour. Form mixture in to small, flattened balls. Dredge the formed gnudi in flour to coat, tapping off the excess. Slide formed gnudi into the boiling water. Be careful not to overcrowd the pan; work in batches if necessary. Remove the gnudi using a slotted spoon after they float to the top and have cooked for about 4 minutes. Arrange gnudi on a platter and lightly drizzle with marinara sauce (This is where I baked it at 400 degrees topped with the cheese blend for 15 minutes.)

New Photos!!!

Here are two new pics of me! These are me down a total of 50 pounds from the last pic posted.