Saturday, February 28, 2015

Spring Eggs on Cornmeal Waffles

The wrens have staked out their home in the bird house on our deck, giving me reason to initiate the bunny plates and napkins.  Yes, I love a pretty table setting, part of the environment to entice healthy eating.  Our Saturday night meal included poached eggs and cornmeal waffles.

Cornmeal Waffles

(Serves 2)

Mix dry ingredients:
1/3 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup whole grain cornmeal
2/3 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon sugar

Beat liquid ingredients with egg:
1 egg
1/2 cup skim milk
1 tablespoon olive oil 

Fold liquid ingredients into dry ingredients, mixing just until flour no longer shows.  Bake on preheated waffle iron sprayed with Pam.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015


This "fun cooking" recipe was a sure pick for my menu with lots of colorful vegetables, whole grain and high quality protein all in one pan.  The recipe was inspired by Food Network Magazine. 


(Serves 4)

Cut partially frozen meat paper thin across the grain.
6 oz. sirloin tip steak
Marinate in sauce for 30 minutes:
2 tablespoons applesauce
4 teaspoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon sesame oil 

Slice vegetables:
2 garlic cloves, minced 
1 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
1/3 cup onion, cut in strips
1 carrot, peeled and cut in thin julienne strips
1 portabella mushroom, sliced thin
3/4 cup red cabbage, sliced
2 mini yellow and orange sweet peppers, cut in strips
1/3 cup mung bean sprouts (I sprout my own from organic beans) 

Cook rice:
1 cup brown rice, instant

Separate egg:
2 egg yolks

Brown meat in oil, then set aside
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Saute vegetables, one at a time in sesame oil, and set aside.
1 teaspoon sesame oil

Preheat oven to 425 F.  Preheat individual iron skillets.
Place rice in center of each pan.  Arrange vegetables and beef around the pan.  Drop egg yolk onto center of rice.  
Bake in oven about 5 minutes.
Season with fresh ground pepper.

I'm off to Charleston today to the State Legislature, where it's "Eatright West Virginia Day".  The chef at the capital food court, Chef Jeremey Lucas, is preparing a heart healthy meal and he's featuring our Healthy Cafe signature Black Bean Chili and Whole Grain Cornbread.



Monday, February 23, 2015

Chill Chaser (Meatless Monday)

My homemade pitas and crumbled feta were the perfect complements to lentil soup.  Seems I didn't have enough lentils, so I added split peas, potatoes and garbanzos to make up for the volume.  The recipe was inspired by Rachael Ray.

Lentil Soup

(Serves 4)

Saute onion and garlic in oil for 3 minutes:
1/3 cup onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon olive oil

Add carrot and cumin.  Saute for 2 minutes.
1 carrot, peeled and chopped
1 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

Add stock, lentils, potatoes, garbanzos and split peas.  Bring to a boil and simmer for 30 minutes.
4 cups total lentils, split peas and diced potatoes (skin on)
8 cups vegetable broth, low sodium
Pepper and Mrs. Dash

Puree 2 cups of soup in food processor.  Return to pan.

Portion soup.  Garnish with parsley.
Serve with homemade pitas and crumbled feta.
My bread recipe was posted Saturday. 


Sunday, February 22, 2015

Kitchen Sink Porridge

Snowy Sunday morning was a good day to try a new multigrain medley.  Minute Brand Multi-Grain Medley carries the whole grain stamp and is made with brown rice, red rice, wild rice and quinoa.  That's the entire ingredients label.  What I liked the most is that the 3 rices were precooked.  Wild rice seems to take me forever to cook.  Besides, the suggested recipe advertized in Food Network Magazine is similar to my daily weekday breakfast, though mine has oatmeal as the base cereal.  The caloires are the same-cost is 3X that of oatmeal.

Kitchen Sink Porridge 

(Serves 2)

Heat 1 bag of multi-grain medley with water or juice.  (I cooked mine in orange juice. . . next time I'll use water or skim milk)
1 cup water
1 bag (approximately 1 cup) multi-grain medley
Bring to a boil.  Cover;  lower heat to simmer and cook for 10 minutes.

Mix in:
1/2 cup Greek yogurt, non-fat, plain
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup raisins
1 tablespoon walnuts
1 tablespoon pecans
1 tablespoon hempseed meal
1 tablespoon chia seeds

This is why I called this the kitchen sink. . . as any nuts, dried fruit or seeds would work.

And since my cupboards are full of various whole grains. . . the possibilities are endless!


Saturday, February 21, 2015

Polar Pizza

A Saturday snow day allowed plenty of time for bread making, and this Arab bread recipe made 2-7 inch pizza crusts and 4 pita breads.

Arab Bread

(Serves 6)

Mix together in mixing bowl:
1 1/4 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1 1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 12 teaspoon dry yeast

Heat water to 125 F.
1 cup water
Add to dry ingredients.  Beat 2 minutes at medium speed.

With dough hook in place, knead on low speed, gradually adding flour until dough leaves sides of bowl:
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour

Place dough in bowl sprayed with Pam.  Cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise until double in bulk.

Punch dough down.  Divide in 6 pieces.  Heat oven to 400 F.

Roll each piece into a round.  I baked 4 of the rounds on a stone in the very hot oven for 10 minutes each.

I added the remaining 2 rounds to 7 inch pizza pans sprayed with Pam.  Pinch dough around sides of pan.

Sausage & Spinach Pizza 

(Serves 2)  

Top each unbaked dough with:
2 tablespoons tomato sauce
3 tablespoons ricotta cheese, part-skim
1/2  2 ounce Turkey Italian Sausage link, partially cooked and sliced

2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, shredded 
1/4 cup fresh spinach, snipped
Sprinkle with Mrs. Dash.
Bake for 12 minutes at 400 F.

My tomato sauce is from Vegetables Accidentally 

Simple Tomato Sauce

Saute onion in olive oil until soft:
1/4 cup onion, diced
1 teaspoon olive oil

1 can no-added salt diced tomatoes (I pulsed mine in a food processor for a few seconds to blend)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Simmer for 30 minutes, covered.



Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Fatulous Tuesday

Tonight's entree was good, but my fill-in for "King Cake" was even better. The glaze was made with fresh cranberries and blueberriesThe recipe was adapted from Food Network Magazine's Frosted Twists.  My version has much less sugar, less fat and 1/2 whole wheat flour.  Mine took less than 2 hours to prepare versus 3 3/4 hours for the original recipe.

Frosted Twists 

(Serves 6)


Combine in mixer bowl:
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
2 1/4 teaspoon rapid dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
Dash salt

Add slowly to dry ingredients:
1 cup steaming skim milk
1/4 cup warm water
2 tablespoons Earth Balance Buttery Spread
1 egg
Beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping sides of bowl as needed.

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
Beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping sides of bowl as needed.

With dough hook in place, gradually add remaining flour:
2 cups all purpose flour
Knead for about 10 minutes until dough leaves sides of bowl.

Place in bowl sprayed with Pam.  Cover bowl with plastic wrap.  Let rise until double, about 45 minutes.  

Punch dough down and onto floured pastry cloth.
Roll to a rectangle 6 inch by 12 inch.

On right half of rectangle, spread Earth Balance within 1/2 inch of edge.
4 tablespoons Earth Balance Buttery Spread

Sprinkle with cinnamon-sugar mix.
1 tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Fold left side of rectangle over onto right side, like a book.
Cut folded dough crosswise into 6 strips.
Twist each strip and coil onto parchment lined baking sheet, tucking ends under.

Cover with plastic wrap.  Let rise until double, about 30 minutes.

Bake at 375 F. 25 minutes.  I turned the oven to broil the last few minutes.


Heat berries in water in microwave, about 45 seconds.
1/4 cup fresh cranberries
1/4 cup fresh blueberries
Squeeze out liquid into a separate bowl.

Mix on high speed of mixer:
5 tablespoons confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon Earth Balance Buttery Spread

Add berry juice and hot water to frosting until pourable.

The entree was adapted from Better Homes and Gardens Orange Teriyaki Beef Stew.

Orange Spice Beef Stew

(Serves 4)

Coat beef with spice mix.
3/4 pound flank steak, cut diagonally in thin strips, about 2 inches long
1 tablespoon five spice powder

Brown in oil on both sides.
1 teaspoon canola oil
Remove from pan.

Add vegetables and saute 2 minutes.
1/3 cup celery, sliced diagonally
3 tablespoons fennel, sliced diagonally
2 garlic cloves
1 portabella mushrooms, sliced diagonally
1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger
3 mini orange sweet peppers, cut in rings

Add broth and orange juice.
2 1/4 cups low sodium beef broth
1 cup orange juice

Return beef to pan.  Cover and simmer 45 minutes.

Add greens and oranges.  Cook an additional 5 minutes.
3 cups power greens
1/3 cup fresh parsley
2 mandarin oranges, segmented



Monday, February 16, 2015

Zippy Zucchini (Meatless Monday)

On my second trip to Aldis, I saw a picture in their magazine suggesting Zucchini Roll-ups.  The recipe did not have specific amounts, but since when are zucchinis a specific size?  Here's how I made it:

Zucchini Roll-ups

(Serves 4)

Saute zucchini slices in olive oil 1 minute per side:
1 zucchini, sliced lengthwise in thin strips
1 teaspoon olive oil

Saute power greens and garlic in canola oil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 cups power greens
1 teaspoon canola oil
Drain thoroughly, squeezing spinach to remove juice.

Combine ricotta cheese, spinach-garlic, wheat germ and Mrs. Dash.
1 1/4 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
1 tablespoon wheat germ
1 teaspoon Mrs. Dash
Spread ricotta cheese mixture over entire length of zucchini strips.  Roll zucchini and arrange in baking dish.

Cover with tomato sauce.  
(My sauce was made with 1 3/4 cup no added salt tomatoes, 1 tablespoon tomato paste and 1 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning)

Sprinkle with Mozzarella and Swiss Cheese
1/3 cup Mozzarella, shredded
1/3 cup Swiss cheese, shredded

Bake in 375 F. oven for 30 minutes.


Sunday, February 15, 2015

Souper Sweet

With wind chill advisories and near zero temperature, this Hearty Chicken Soup warmed our tummies, and the Blueberry Shortcake provided a sweet ending.  The soup recipe was in the December issue of Cooking Light Magazine. 

Hearty Chicken Soup

(Serves 4)

Saute vegetables in canola oil for 5 minutes:
1 parsnip, peeled and sliced diagonally
1 carrot, peeled and sliced diagonally
1/4 cup onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon canola oil

Add chicken, broth and seasonings:
1-6 ounce chicken breast, boneless, skinless, cut in pieces
1 quart water
1 tablespoon low sodium chicken bouillon
1/3 cup parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
Bring to a boil.  Lower heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes.

Add noodles:
2 ounce spinach linguine
Cook on high 6 minutes.

Add greens:
2 cups power greens
Heat 1 minute.

Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper to serve.

 My shortcakes were made yesterday.  (See previous post.)  I heated 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries with 1/4 cup water, juice from 1/2 a lemon and 1 tablespoon cornstarch and mashed the berries while thickening.

Stay safe and warm this week!


Saturday, February 14, 2015

Valentine Delight

Shrimp Bowls and Shortcakes comprise our Valentine Dinner on a very snowy day in West Virginia.  So special to be at home together!  The Shrimp & Quinoa Bowl was inspired by Motive Nutrition.  The Strawberry Shortcake recipe is from Where Women Cook Magazine.

Shrimp & Quinoa Bowl 

(Serves 3)

Bring quinoa, low sodium broth and bay leaf to a boil.
1/2 cup red quinoa
1 cup water
3/4 teaspoon low sodium chicken bouillion
1 bay leaf
Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook 15 minutes until liquid is absorbed.  Remove from the heat.

Saute oil, garlic and peppers in a separate saucepan.
1 teaspoon oil
1 garlic clove, minced
2 sweet peppers, diced

Add diced tomatoes and cook 5 minutes.
1 16 oz. can no added salt tomatoes, diced

Add olives.
1/4 cup kalamata olives, diced

Lay the shrimp evenly over the sauce.
8 ounce shrimp, tail on, peeled and deveined
Cover and cook 5 minutes.  Toss in green.
1 cup power greens.
Cook another minute.

Serve with quinoa.


(Serves 8)

In food processor, mix flours, baking powder, sugar and salt.
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt

Cut in buttery spread.
5 tablespoons Earth Balance Buttery Spread

Add dried fruit and pulse to cut.
1/3 cup  (I used prunes and apricots)

Add milk.
1 1/4 cup skim milk

Portion with 3 ounce scoop onto un-greased baking sheet.  Bake at 425 F. for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 F. and bake another 15 minutes.

To assemble scones, slice in half.  Layer with sliced strawberries, sweetened with sugar, and whipped topping.
2 strawberries per scone
1/2 teaspoon sugar per scone
1/4 cup dream whip
Garnish with a whole strawberry each.


Friday, February 13, 2015

Sweetheart Salmon

Wild salmon patties, flowers from my husband and dark chocolate strawberry hearts sweetened the start of Valentine's weekend.  I found the wild salmon (frozen, skinless), the fresh asparagus and fresh strawberries at Aldis yesterday for a terrific price. The salmon recipe is from Eat Well Meals.

Wild Salmon Patties

(Makes 6-we each ate 1 1/2)

Mix in food processor:
2-4 ounces raw fillets, cut in pieces
1 cup almond flour
3 colorful mini sweet peppers
1/4 cup onion
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1 clove garlic
2 eggs
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoon dried dill
Mrs. Dash

Portion with ice cream scoop onto parchment lined baking sheet.  Bake at 375 F. for 20 minutes.

The strawberry heart idea came from the Delicious Dietitian Duo.   I melted 2 squares of 100% cacao unsweetened chocolate in a double boiler, added 2 teaspoon of honey, then dipped each strawberry half in the chocolate.  This made 5 strawberries.

The word for the weekend is "snuggle"!








Thursday, February 12, 2015

Sunnyside Skillet

Here's a quick meal, made with items most of us have on hand.  The recipe is from Rachael Ray.

Sunnyside Skillet

(Serves 2)

Brown potatoes and onion in buttery spread, covered for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally. 
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/4 cup onion, diced
2 tablespoons Earth Balance Buttery Spread

Add peppers and cook  3 minutes.
2 mini sweet red peppers, diced

Divide potatoes among 2 individual iron skillets.  Add egg.
2 eggs

Season with Mrs. Dash.

Cover and cook 3 minutes.  Top with chopped arugula.













Monday, February 9, 2015

Squashaghetti (Meatless Monday)

This stuffed spaghetti squash with cheeses and broccoli looks like a large serving, but my little old husband and I each ate an entire half squash!  The recipe is from Eating Well.

Spaghetti Squash with Broccoli

(Serves 2)

Half squash lengthwise and seed.  Place face down in water and microwave 10 minutes.
1 medium spaghetti squash

Cook vegetables in olive oil for 2 minutes.  Add water and cook 3 more minutes.
1 broccoli crown, chopped
3 mini sweet peppers, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 tablespoons water

Using a fork, scrape the squash from the shells into broccoli mix.
Add seasonings and cheeses.
3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Fresh ground pepper
1 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shredded 

Fill squash halves with mixture.  Bake at 450 F. for 10 minutes.

Enjoy your week!

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Tagged with Taste

Chicken Tagine, Millet and Moroccan Vegetables made in packets proofed a delicious combination of complementary tastes.  The entree recipe is from Oldways.  The vegetable recipe from Food Network.  I love the recipes prepared in parchment packets, as were these vegetables.  I'm thinking I could have put the chicken in the same packets, but instead cooked it in a baking dish.  First the packets:

Moroccan Vegetable Packets

(Serves 4)

Make the broth by combining juice and spices in a saucepan and simmering for 15 minutes.
2-6 oz. cans low sodium V-8
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/2 teaspoon shaved fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of saffron threads

Prepare vegetables:
1 small winter squash, seeded, peeled and cut in 1/2 inch pieces
2 mini sweet peppers, cut in rings
1/2 cup fennel, diced
1/3 cup yellow onion, diced
1/3 cup celery, diced
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 cup fresh parsely
2 garlic cloves, minced
Mix vegetables with broth.  Divide among 4 parchment pieces, folded into envelopes.
Bake at 400 F for 40 minutes.

Chicken Tagine

(Serves 3) 

Combine meat and seasonings in baking dish sprayed with Pam:
1 6 ounce boneless skinless chicken breast, cut in pieces
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup fresh parsley
1/3 cup yellow onion, diced
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon grated lemon peel
1/2 teaspoon cumin
Fresh ground pepper
Pinch saffron
6 Kalamata olives, sliced
1/2 lemon, sliced and halfed
1/4 cup water

Bake for 20 minutes.

I prepared millet on the stove top and served topping with the vegetables, then the chicken broth mixture.