Archive for the 'Healthy' Category

Cinco de Mayo Dinner

black-bean-fiesta-enchiladasYesterday was Cinco de Mayo so just like everyone else, we celebrated with a wonderful dinner.  I love Mexican food, but hate the calories and fat from traditional chips, re-fried beans, and all of the cheese.  One thing i have learned is that you can take the original version of any dish and lighten it up just by subbing out ingredients or changing the method in which you cook the dish.  For example, we chose to eat Guiltless Gourmet baked corn tortilla chips, black beans (made from dried beans at home) as well as subbing Oikos Greek yogurt for the traditional sour cream, picking whole grain wraps instead of corn and using a whole grain rice pilaf by Kashi for the filling.

whole-wheat-wraps

kashi-pilaf

For those of you who have not yet tried the Kashi Pilaf Blends, now is the time to try them!  They are so good and packed full of nutrients.  Their original 7 whole grain pilaf contains a blend of whole oats, long grain brown rice, rye, hard red winter wheat, triticale, buckwheat, barley, and sesame seeds. It is full of fiber, sodium free, and packed with 8 grams of protein per serving! I bought the original since I like to control my own sodium level but I am sure the others are just as delicious.  Adding this to the inside of our enchiladas was WAY better than your average rice.

kashi-pilaf-2If you would order this meal in a Mexican restaurant, it would probably have 3x as many calories and fat as the version we made.  Plus, we indulged in some chili lime Guiltless Gourmet Chips.  So good! You can definitely enjoy this version of enchiladas guilt free!

Fiesta Enchiladas

Filling

1/4 c. onion, finely chopped

1/2 c. pepper medley, (I used the 365 brand frozen pepper strips)

1 clove garlic, minced

2/3 c. black beans

3/4 c. corn, canned no salt added

1/2 package Kashi Original 7 Whole Grain Pilaf

1/4 c. homemade enchilada sauce, recipe follows

Juice of 1 lime

2 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. paprika

1/2 tsp. white pepper

1/2 tsp. black pepper

1/4 tsp. chili powder

bunch of cilantro, chopped

black-bean-enchilada-filling

For the enchilada preparation

5 whole grain wraps

Enchilada Sauce

cheddar cheese

Enchilada Toppings

salsa

avocado

Oikos Greek Yogurt

green onion

shredded lettuce

jalapeno

lime

Method- for the filling

Spray a nonstick skillet with cooking spray and begin to soften onion and pepper medley over medium heat.  Add in the minced garlic and stir.  Once onions and peppers are soft and tender add in the corn, black beans, and Kashi rice blend.  Stir to combine and add seasonings.  Stir to evenly coat ingredients then add juice of 1 lime, enchilada sauce and cilantro. Mixture will become thick.  Cook until all ingredients are evenly coated and hot.

Prepare a 13 x 9 inch baking dish with cooking spray and set aside.

Divide enchilada filling into 5 equal portions.  Scoop each portion onto the center of a whole grain tortilla.  Wrap the tortilla like a burrito, except leaving the ends open.  Set in baking dish and repeat.

Once all of the filling has been wrapped up in the tortillas, pour the enchilada sauce over the tortillas and sprinkle with cheddar cheese if desired.

Bake 375 for 15- 20 minutes until hot and bubbly.  Serve with desired condiments.

Enchilada Sauce

1 -12 oz. can plain tomato sauce, less sodium

1 small yellow onion, minced

1 small clove garlic, minced

1 jalapeno, finely minced (seeds removed) or 1 tbsp. finely minced poblano pepper

handful of chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon cumin

1 tsp. chili powder

dash paprika

dash white pepper

dash black pepper

salt, to taste

Method

Coat a small saucepan with non stick spray and cook the onion and garlic until softened.  Add in the jalapeno or poblano pepper.  Continue to cook for a few minutes longer until pepper softens.  Add the tomato sauce and all of the seasonings except for the cilantro.  Cook mixture over medium low heat for about 10 minutes or until hot.  Stir in cilantro and set aside until ready to use.

Source: Feast on This! original recipe

Lucious Lemon Muffin Bites

lucious-lemon-poppyseed-muffinsKevin has an eating problem. Yes, you read that correctly. Not a drinking problem, but an eating problem.  They boy can’t eat anything without it falling off of his fork, squishing out of a bun, taco shell, or crumbling it to pieces.  The funny thing is that he gets so frustrated too.  He seriously thinks that either I or his food is out to get him.  I swear it takes him about three times longer to eat than I do.

Kevin also has another problem…eh…issue…whatever.  According to him he does not produce saliva when he eats.  Yes I know, just what you wanted to know, how much saliva he produces.  It is true.  He has to drink with about every bite unless what he is eating is a wet item.  I can’t understand this.  My mouth naturally produces more whenever I eat anything dry like bread.   I guess he is missing that gland? gene? whatever it is.  Anyway, you’ll be happy to know that these muffin bites are plenty moist and make him happy.

So on my quest to make his eating process more enjoyable and to hear less complaining, I decided to make bite sized muffins.  He can pop them in his mouth, there is no wrapper or fork to deal with and therefore no crumbs.  He can do this, right??

Lucious Lemon Muffin Bites

1 c. all purpose flour, sifted

1 teaspoon baking powder

dash sea salt

1/2 c. butter

1/2 c. sugar

2 eggs, separated

3 tablespoons lemon juice, freshly squeezed

1 teaspoon lemon zest

1 tablespoon poppyseeds

2 tablespoons decorating sugar

Method

Sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add poppy seeds to flour mixture.

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy.  Beat in egg yolks one at a time, scraping the bowl as needed.  Blend well.

Add flour mixture alternately with lemon juice and zest, beginning and ending with flour mixture.

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until stiff peaks form.  Carefully fold egg whites into the lemon batter.

Fill greased mini muffin tins 2/3 way full and sprinkle with decorating sugar.

Bake 375 for 10- 15 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

Source: Feast on This! recipe

Angel Food Cake

angel-food-cake-standEvery week I have been asking my amazing husband, Kevin, to give me some sort of cooking or baking challenge.  He normally just starts naming off any food he has ever.  This week he named one of his all time favorite desserts, angel food cake.  Surprisingly I have never made an angel food cake…ever!  It was just always so easy to buy one instead.  Now, after making one for the first time, I won’t ever buy another one again.  Evidently his mom used to make strawberry shortcakes using angel food cake when he was little.  He told me that he wanted the “soft and light kind” like his moms.

angel-food-cake_simple1

Did mine pass the test, you ask?  While we were eating I asked, “Is it good?  Is it better than your mothers?”  Before he even had the chance to answer I told him “It better be or I’m not making it again!” .   We both laughed.  (Linda, if you are reading this, you know that yours will always be his favorite! 🙂 )

Angel food cake is a delicious, elegant, low calorie dessert.  It also tastes great with any fruits and whipped cream.  We enjoyed ours with lemon curd, strawberries and hand whipped vanilla cream.  Making an angel food cake is very simple.  How hard is it to whip egg whites?  I will warn you, though, that you will definitely need your 6 quart Kitchen Aid or a very large bowl and your hand mixer.  My egg whites whipped so high that they just about came out of the mixer by the time I stopped it.  I could easily take an off set spatula and level off my mixer bowl.  It was that full!!  I actually had to transfer my whipped egg white mixture to a very large stainless steel bowl in order to fold in my sifted flour/ sugar mixture.

I bought an angel food cake pan specifically for this recipe.  I do own a bundt cake pan and after making my first angel food cake I now realize that I probably could have used this pan or any cake pan for that matter.  I think they would even be cute as little cupcakes with a lemon buttercream and strawberry on top.  No stealing my ideas, now.  I plan to make these for an upcoming birthday!

angel-food-cake_golden

Angel Food Cake

serves 12

Cake

1  cup  sifted cake flour

1 1/2  cups  sugar, divided

12  large egg whites

1  teaspoon  cream of tartar

1/4  teaspoon  salt

1 1/2  teaspoons  vanilla extract

1 1/2  teaspoons  fresh lemon juice

1/2  teaspoon  almond extract (I omitted this and added extra vanilla extract instead.)

Method

Preheat oven to 325°.

To prepare cake, lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine flour and 3/4 cup sugar, stirring with a whisk.

Place egg whites in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at high speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar and salt; beat until soft peaks form. Add 3/4 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time, beating until stiff peaks form. Beat in vanilla, juice, and almond extract (if using).

Sift 1/4 cup flour mixture over egg white mixture; fold in. Repeat with remaining flour mixture, 1/4 cup at a time.

angel-food_batter

Spoon the batter into an un-greased a10-inch tube pan, spreading evenly. Break air pockets by cutting through the batter with a knife. Bake at 325° for 55 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Invert pan; cool completely. Loosen cake from sides of pan using a narrow metal spatula. Invert the cake onto a plate.

angel-food_baked

Source: Cooking Light, April 2003