Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Healthy’ Category

fruitskewers

These fruit skewers are one of my favorite things to serve at showers, parties and lunches. They only take a few minutes to put together, look beautiful on the plate and are easy to pick up. I vary the fruit depending on what is looking good and in season. The dip incorporates cream cheese, vanilla yogurt and powdered sugar and has just the right balance of sweetness and tang.

Try these out next time you need to bring something to a shower or luncheon! They will be a hit!

Fruit Skewers with Vanilla Cream Cheese Dip
(A Bakin’ and Eggs Original)

Ingredients:

1 cantaloupe, diced
1 pint strawberries, cut in half
1 pineapple, diced
Bamboo skewers
1 block reduced fat cream cheese (8 ounces), softened
1/2 cup low-fat vanilla yogurt
3/4-1 cup powdered sugar (adjust amount to taste)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Place six pieces of fruit on each skewer, alternating fruits. Arrange on a platter.

Combine cream cheese, vanilla yogurt, powdered sugar and vanilla in a large bowl. Mix on high speed with a hand mixer until combined and fluffy. Sample the dip and adjust ingredients to taste.

Read Full Post »

cherrytomatofish

I have really lucked out with access to fresh local fruits and vegetables lately. First, there were the figs. Remember the Grilled Fig and Prosciutto Pizza and the Fig Upside Down Cake? Then we had the mountain blueberry extravaganza that resulted in this Peach and Blueberry Crisp. Last week I found out that my brother in law’s tomato plants were going crazy. This summer he planted his first garden and I was really excited to hear that his tomatoes were doing really well and really excited that he wanted to share some with me!

When I saw the beautiful red and yellow cherry tomatoes I was instantly inspired to serve them over fish. I Googled “fish and cherry tomatoes” and this recipe from epicurious.com was the first to pop up. Usually, I spend forever looking for the perfect recipe but this was just what I had in mind so I went with it.

I found red snapper on sale at the store and it ended up working great with this dish. It was firm and didn’t fall apart when sauteed and good for my husband who doesn’t like strong fish. The cherry tomato/olive mixture is very flavorful and the red pepper flakes add just the right amount of spice to the dish.

This was a great summer dinner and we’ll definitely have this again!

Sauteed Snapper with Cherry Tomatoes
(Recipe source epicurious.com)

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3/4 to 1 pound tilapia, red snapper, orange roughy fillets
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4-1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (depending on your spice tolerance)
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup Kalamata olives, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper

Directions:

Sprinkle fish with salt and pepper. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and heat until shimmers. Place fish in skillet and cook for about 3-4 minutes per side, depending on the thickness of your fish. Fish should be opaque and flake easily. Transfer to plate.

Add parsley, crushed red pepper, tomatoes, olives and garlic to same skillet and saute until tomatoes are soft and juicy, about 2-3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and spoon over fish.

Yield: 2 servings

Read Full Post »

blackbeansrice250

Part two of last night’s delicious grilled shrimp taco dinner. This is pretty much my go-to black beans and rice recipe. I’m almost always guaranteed to have all the ingredients in my pantry and it’s simple, good and always a great side dish for Mexican night. And be warned…this recipe makes a ton!

Black Beans and Rice
(Recipe source Joy of Cooking)

Ingredients:

1 large onion, diced
1 fresh pepper, seeded and diced (like jalapeno or habanero, or substitute diced canned jalapenos or red pepper flakes – use what you have!)
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes (or 1 can of diced tomatoes)
1 cup rice
2 1/2 cups water
1 teaspoon salt (or more, to taste)
1 can black beans, drained and rinsed

Directions:

Heat olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and peppers and cook for about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another 2-3 minutes, or until mixture is softened.

Stir in tomatoes, water, rice and salt. Bring mixture to a boil and then stir in black beans. Cover and cook over low heat for about 20 minutes, until water absorbed and rice is tender. Don’t peak until the 20 minutes are up!

Remove from heat and let stand about 5-10 minutes (still covered) before serving.

Yield: 6-8 side dish servings

Read Full Post »

shrimptaco

First things first, let me apologize profusely for the quality of this picture. Unfortunately, dinner wasn’t ready until it was dark outside so I was forced to shoot these in the harsh, unflattering light of my kitchen. But these shrimp tacos were just too delicious not to share!

I have been craving shrimp tacos for the last couple weeks. I couldn’t really find a recipe that sounded perfect to me so I just kind of went for it. I decided to do grilled shrimp with a spicy jerk rub, shredded cabbage, salsa, cheese and this great Baja cream that I found on Epicurious. The combination turned out great. The flavors went together really well. The Baja cream balanced out the spiciness of the jerk grilled shrimp and the cabbage added just the right crisp to the tacos. And to top it off, they were pretty healthy!

I served these with black beans and rice (recipe to come on the blog soon!) and grilled corn. Perfect summer meal!

Grilled Shrimp Tacos
(A Bakin’ and Eggs Original)

Ingredients:

1/3 cup light mayonnaise
1/2 cup light sour cream
1 teaspoon lime zest
1-2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (to taste)
Pinch of salt
1 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
Extra virgin olive oil
Jerk seasoning rub (recommended Dizzy Pig Jamaican Firewalk)
Skewers (metal or bamboo soaked in water)
Cooking spray
Taco sized flour tortillas
Your favorite salsa
Shredded cheese
Shredded cabbage

Directions:

Mix together mayonnaise, sour cream, lime zest, lime juice and salt for Baja cream. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes to let flavors develop.

Preheat grill to medium heat (around 400 degrees).

Place shrimp in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil. Toss to coat lightly. Generously shake Jerk rub over the shrimp and toss to coat. Place shrimp on skewers. Spray grill grate with cooking spray and place shrimp and grill. Cook for about 2 minutes per side or  until pink and no longer translucent.

Wrap tortillas in a paper towel and heat for about 45 seconds in the microwave. Place grilled shrimp (I did about 4 per taco) on tortillas and then top with cabbage, salsa, Baja cream and cheese.

Yield: 2-3 servings

Read Full Post »

Barbecue Shrimp

bbqshrimp

I love barbecue shrimp but I’m usually scared away from serving it reguarly because of the amount of butter in the sauce. And you know you have to eat all the sauce – the best part is dipping your bread in it! My dad used to always order this dish when we were on vacation at the beach. He worked for several years to perfect his at home version and that’s the recipe I’ve always used when I make this. And sorry to disappoint…but you’re not getting the full fat version today. You’re getting my first (and very successful) attempt at scaling it back some. While Brandon said it’s definitely not the same as the real version, it’s pretty darn good for a substitute.

If you’ve never had barbecue shrimp make sure to serve it with good French bread for mopping the sauce. Also, leave the shells on the shrimp. I know it’s tempting to take them off. But trust me…part of the fun of this dish is getting a little messy!

So I promise to give you my dad’s recipe in the future. But try this version and let me know what you think. It’s different but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised…and walk away from the table with slightly less guilt!

Barbecue Shrimp
(Recipe adapted from Cooking Light)

Ingredients:

1/4 cup reduced fat Caesar dressing (recommended Newman’s Own)
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
1/4-1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or more! depending on your spice tolerance – we like this dish spicy!!!)
1 teaspoon hot sauce
3 bay leaves
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 pound shrimp (deveined but shell on – you can just butterfly the shrimp to devein)
1/4 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper, to taste
Lemon wedges

Directions:

Combine the first 10 ingredients in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Bring mixture to a boil. Add in shrimp and chicken broth and cook for 3-5 minutes, until shrimp turn pink (depending on size of your shrimp).

Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with lemon wedges and French bread.

Yield: 2-3 servings

Read Full Post »

chickengyropita

If you read my blog regularly you’ve probably noticed that I love Greek foods and flavors. When I read Annie from Annie’s Eats rave about this being her new favorite recipe I knew I had to try it.  We don’t do a lot of sandwichy things for dinner so this was a nice change for us. I love tzatziki sauce and smothered my pita in it (which is why you probably aren’t seeing the chicken in the photo above).

The only complaint I had was not having time to make homemade pita bread and all they had at the grocery was very wheaty and dense pitas. I look forward to trying this again with a more traditional pita.

Chicken Gyros
(Recipe heavily adapted from Annie’s Eats)

Ingredients:

FOR THE TZATZIKI SAUCE
16 ounces plain lowfat yogurt
1/2 hothouse cucumber or 1 regular cucumber, peeled and seeded
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
Salt and pepper, to taste
Juice of about 1/4 a lemon
Extra virgin olive oil

FOR THE CHICKEN
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons plain lowfat yogurt
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Salt and pepper, to taste
2-3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced

TO ASSEMBLE
3 pita bread rounds
1/2 cup grape tomatoes, sliced in half
1/2 cucumber, thinly sliced

Directions:

FOR THE TZATZIKI SAUCE

If you want a thicker tzatziki sauce you can strain your yogurt. I actually prefer mine a little thinner (I know I’m in the minority here) so I skipped this step.

Finely shred the cucumber and wrap in paper towels to remove as much water as possible. Whisk together yogurt, shredded cucumber, garlic, white wine vinegar, salt, pepper and lemon juice.  Drizzle lightly with olive oil.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving to allow the flavors to develop.

FOR THE CHICKEN
Whisk together garlic, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, olive oil, yogurt, oregano and salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Add the sliced chicken and coat well with marinade mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Preheat the broiler to high. Place a wire rack coated with cooking spray over a jelly roll pan. Line chicken slices on rack. Cook chicken for about 4-5 minutes. Remove pan from oven and flip chicken. Continue cooking for another 3-4 minutes or until the internal temperature has reached 160 degrees.

TO ASSEMBLE
Heat pitas (by wrapping and placing in microwave or oven). To serve, layer a few chicken pieces over pita, drizzle (or in my case drench) with tzatziki and top with tomatoes and cucumber.

Yield: 3 servings

Read Full Post »

goatcheeseveggiepasta

I saw this recipe on Smitten Kitchen and it reminded me of an old favorite I hadn’t made in a while. One of my favorite easy pasta dishes is to saute vegetables and mix them with pasta and flavored Boursin cheese (usually garlic and herb). I love goat cheese so when I saw the recipe on SK I wanted to try my recipe with goat cheese instead of Boursin.

The beauty of this dish is that you can use whatever veggies you have on hand or prefer. Tonight I was feeling zuchinni, broccoli and sun dried tomatoes. This is a great meat-free dish. I’m looking forward to the leftovers!

Goat Cheese Veggie Pasta
(Recipe inspired by Smitten Kitchen)

Ingredients:

1/2 box pasta (penne or spiral)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 zucchini
1 small head broccoli
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, rehydrated
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp Italian seasoning
2 -4 ounces goat cheese, depending on how cheesy you want to get
Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Cook pasta according to directions on package. Drain and reserve 1/2 cup pasta water.

In the meantime, preheat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add zucchini and broccoli and saute for about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook another minute.

Remove from heat and stir in sun dried tomatoes, Italian seasoning, goat cheese and pasta. Stir until cheese is melted and coats pasta. Add in some of the reserved pasta water if needed. Salt and pepper to taste.

Yield: 2-4 servings (depending on how hungry you are!)

Read Full Post »

fetaflounder

I love fish with Greek preparations. I had some delicious whole milk feta in the fridge and a craving for fish. I picked up some flounder and Roma tomatoes at the grocery and came home with a mission of creating a Greek inspired fish entree.

I was extremely pleased with how this turned out. It was ready in about 20 minutes and full of flavor. Unfortunately, Brandon is out of town so I didn’t have anyone to taste test for me but I told him all about it and he’s excited to try it out.

So if you’re a feta/Greek flavor lover like me and looking for a new preparation for flaky white fish, this is a dish you want to make!

Greek Inspired Flounder
(Recipe source Bakin’ and Eggs)

Ingredients:

2 flounder fillets (can sub any other flaky white fish like tilapia, snapper, etc)
2 tablespoons flour
1 Roma tomato, sliced
2 ounces of high-quality feta cheese
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon basil
1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper, to taste
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
Cooking spray

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a baking dish with cooking spray. Set aside.

Rinse fish with water and pat dry. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with flour and shake off excess.Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add olive oil and heat until shimmering. Add fish to skillet and cook for 1-2 minutes per side, until lightly golden.

Remove fish from pan and place in prepared baking dish. Squeeze lemon juice over fish. Sprinkle with basil and oregano. Line fish with 3-4 tomato slices and top with crumbled feta cheese. Salt and pepper to taste.

Place in preheated oven and cook for about 5 minutes. Turn on the broiler and cook for another 2-3 minutes,  until feta very lightly browns.

Remove from oven and carefully transfer from baking dish to plate. I served mine over cous cous with a small green salad.

Yield: 2 servings

Read Full Post »

eggplantparm

I can count on one hand the number of times Brandon has requested eggplant for dinner…that would be zero. So imagine my shock when last week he said, “We should have eggplant parmesan for dinner sometime soon.” That was all the encouragement I needed. It was on the menu for dinner this week. I was extra lucky because I went to visit my parents last weekend in Atlanta and came home with great looking Japanese eggplant from the Delkalb Farmers Market.

Now, my greatest problem with eggplant paremesan is how unhealthy it is. The breading and eggplant soak up so much oil if you saute it. I decided to make it my mission to make a tasty baked eggplant parmesan. I think it turned out really well. The breading was crispy and the eggplant was cooked perfectly. Also, it didn’t take too long. I skipped the step of double baking (baking the prepared eggplant with the sauce and cheese). Instead I just added the cheese to the top of the eggplant the last few minutes it was baking and heated sauce on the stovetop and spooned it over the eggplant.

I served Brandon’s over pasta but had mine on its own along with a salad. Both serving methods were great!

Baked Eggplant Parmesan
(Recipe source Bakin’ and Eggs)

Ingredients:

2-3 Japanese eggplants or 1 large eggplant
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1/2 cup all purpose flour
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 eggs, whisked together
1 tablespoon water
1 1/2 cups plain bread crumbs (I used a mixture of regular and panko)
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/4 cup shredded parmesan
Cooking spray
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 ounces mozzerella cheese, sliced thinly
2 cups marinara sauce

Directions:

If you’re using Japanese eggplant, cut in half horizontally and then cut each half into 3-4 strips (about 1/4 inch thick). If you’re using traditional eggplant, slice into rounds (about 1/4 inch thick). Place sliced eggplant into a large colander and sprinkle with kosher salt. Let sit for about 30 minutes (eggplant will “weep” some of the water it is holding).

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with foil and placing a wire rack on top. Spray rack with cooking spray.

Heat marinara sauce in a saucepan over medium-low heat.

Wipe salt off of eggplant. Line up three shallow dishes on workspace. Place flour in first dish. Season with salt and pepper. Place eggs and water in second dish. Place bread crumbs, Italian seasoning and shredded parmesan in third dish.

Dredge each eggplant slice in flour, then egg wash, then breadcrumbs. Arrange on prepared baking sheet with rack. Brush tops of each slice with olive oil.

Bake for 15 minutes. Flip eggplant slices and bake for another 10-15 minutes. Eggplant should be tender and easy to pierce. Add cheese to top and continue to bake for about 5 more minutes. If needed, broil cheese for a minute or two to brown.

Remove from oven. Serve over pasta or on its own. Spoon marinara sauce over eggplant slices.

Read Full Post »

grilledsweetpotatoslices

What to do when you’re “over” the traditional method of preparing things – like baked sweet potatoes – and feeling uninspired? Challenge the husband to come up with something on the grill. Brandon whipped these grilled sweet potato slices up as a side dish last week and they turned out great! I would describe them as a cross between a sweet potato fry and a sweet potato chip. They were coated in olive oil and a spicy jerk rub and had a nice flavor.

Try these out for a new sweet potato preparation and a perfect summer grilling side item.

Grilled Sweet Potato Slices
(Recipes source Egghead forum)

Ingredients:

2 sweet potatoes, sliced into 1/4 inch thick rounds
Olive oil
Jerk seasoning (recommended: Dizzy Pig Jamaican Firewalk)
Kosher salt

Directions:

Preheat grill to 350 degrees. Coat potato slices in olive oil and generously sprinkle with seasoning rub and kosher salt. Carefully place potato slices on grill. Don’t be alarmed if you lose a few through the grates. If you want to prevent this you can lay foil down on the grate before grilling but you will lose those beautiful grill marks! Grill on medium heat, turning frequently (and carefully!) until slices begin getting grill marks and can be easily pierced. This should take about 12-15 minutes.

Yield: 2-3 servings

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 428 other followers