Saturday, March 31, 2012

Mediterranean Grilled Chicken

So D made this. It was really good. He let it refrigerate 24 hours.

Will have again.

We had with Orzo with Spinach and Feta.

Mediterranean Grilled Chicken

Photo by ALB

Cooking the chicken with the skin on renders it tender and flavorful. Serve the skewers of eggplant, tomatoes, onions, bell peppers, and zucchini - the key ingredients of Provence's ratatouille. To prepare the skewers, brush vegetables with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and grill for 6 minutes, turning once.

YIELD: 6 servings (serving size: 1 chicken breast half)
COURSE: Main Dishes

6 bone-in chicken breast halves (about 3 pounds)
3 tablespoons Rosemary-Garlic Rub (below)
6 rosemary sprigs
6 thyme sprigs
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Cooking spray

Loosen skin from chicken by inserting fingers, gently pushing between skin and meat. Rub 3 tablespoons Rosemary-Garlic Rub evenly over breast meat. Place 1 rosemary sprig and 1 thyme sprig between skin and meat of each breast half. Gently press skin to secure. Cover and refrigerate 4 hours.

Prepare grill.

Sprinkle chicken with pepper. Place chicken, skin sides down, on grill rack coated with cooking spray. Grill 25 minutes or until done, turning occasionally. Discard skin before serving.

Note: Store cooked chicken in refrigerator for up to 2 days.

(Totals include Rosemary-Garlic Rub)

Nutritional Information
Calories: 167; Calories from fat: 10%; Fat: 1.9g; Saturated fat: 0.5g; Monounsaturated fat: 0.5g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.4g; Protein: 34.3g; Carbohydrate: 1g; Fiber: 0.1g; Cholesterol: 86mg; Iron: 1.2mg; Sodium: 151mg; Calcium: 28mg

Cooking Light AUGUST 2002

Rosemary-Garlic Rub

YIELD: 1/4 cup (serving size: about 1 teaspoon)
COURSE: Sauces/Condiments

2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
2 tablespoons plain fat-free yogurt
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 garlic cloves, crushed

Combine all ingredients.

Note: Store the rub in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 3; Calories from fat: 0.0%; Fat: 0.0g; Saturated fat: 0.0g; Monounsaturated fat: 0.0g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.0g; Protein: 0.2g; Carbohydrate: 0.6g; Fiber: 0.1g; Cholesterol: 0.0mg; Iron: 0.0mg; Sodium: 41mg; Calcium: 8mg

Cooking Light AUGUST 2002

Orzo with Spinach and Feta

When I showed D this recipe he must not have really read it. And even writing the grocery list, he looked right at the risotto and crossed out orzo.

So I made everything but the orzo, and then asked D where it was. He realized we only had risotto, so we made it with that instead of orzo.

It was very good. I would have again, although I would make it with orzo.

We had with Mediterranean Grilled Chicken.

Orzo with Spinach and Feta

Photo by ALB

Brain, not brawn: Popeye might have downed spinach to get big muscles, but if he'd been smarter, he'd have known the leafy green powerhouse gets its real punch from abundant antioxidants, which can keep you thinking sharply.

YIELD: 8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)
COURSE: Side Dishes/Vegetables

5 cups water
2 cups uncooked orzo (rice-shaped pasta)
5 cups coarsely chopped spinach
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

Bring water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add orzo. Cook 10 minutes; drain. Rinse with cold water; drain.

Combine pasta, spinach, and feta in a large bowl. Combine oil and remaining ingredients in a small bowl. Drizzle lemon mixture over pasta mixture; toss well to coat.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 244; Calories from fat: 23%; Fat: 5.5g; Saturated fat: 2.5g; Monounsaturated fat: 2g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.6g; Protein: 8.5g; Carbohydrate: 33.8g; Fiber: 2.4g; Cholesterol: 13mg; Iron: 2.7mg; Sodium: 335mg; Calcium: 113mg

Cooking Light DECEMBER 1999

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Margarita Fish Tacos with Chipotle-Lime Mayo and Arugula

So this won't be a completely fair review since we changed a lot. But if we don't have a substantial fish, I think I need to give up on fish tacos.

I don't like fish tacos in a restaurant. I can't wrap my arms paying $15 for tilapia. I mean, it's tilapia, the crap fish.

I don't like halibut (too expensive for a fish that has no taste), and we had some cod in the freezer (bought when I couldn't find snapper...which I like). So we used that. I wasn't making a special trip to Whole Foods for Arugula, so Iceberg lettuce.

The fish took on huge flavors of the orange, but other than that were kind of plain. The sauce was good. Since neither of us is keen on fish as left-overs we each had 2 servings.

Probably wouldn't have again...they were just eh, overall.

Margarita Fish Tacos with Chipotle-Lime Mayo and Arugula

This versatile dish would be good with chicken or shrimp. To turn it into a salad, omit the tortillas and add chopped jicama and avocado.

YIELD: 4 servings (serving size: 2 tacos)
COURSE: Main Dishes, Appetizers

1 1/2 tablespoons grated orange rind
1 tablespoon grated lime rind
2 tablespoons tequila
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons warm water
1 pound halibut fillets
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons finely chopped chipotle chile, canned in adobo sauce (about 1 chile)
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas
2 cups trimmed arugula


Combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add halibut to bag; seal and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes, turning occasionally. Remove halibut from bag; discard marinade. Pat halibut dry; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add halibut; cook 4 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Break fish into chunks.

Combine mayonnaise, cilantro, juice, and chipotle.

Warm tortillas according to package directions. Divide fish evenly among tortillas; top each tortilla with 1/4 cup arugula and about 2 teaspoons mayonnaise mixture. Fold in half.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 272; Fat: 6.9g; Saturated fat: 1g; Monounsaturated fat: 2.1g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.5g; Protein: 26g; Carbohydrate: 24g; Fiber: 2.6g; Cholesterol: 36mg; Iron: 1.2mg; Sodium: 367mg; Calcium: 97mg

Cooking Light APRIL 2007

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Tzatziki Chicken Salad

So D made this. I'm pretty sure it was very easy. We had with flat bread instead of pita chips.

The taste was a little on the plain side...but for leftovers the flavors melded more. Next time I would add feta. D added tomatoes.

Tzatziki Chicken Salad

We made a classic Greek sauce of creamy yogurt and cucumber for the base of this tangy salad.

YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: about 2/3 cup salad and 1/2 cup chips)
HANDS-ON:16 Minutes
TOTAL:16 Minutes
COURSE: Main Dishes, Salads

2/3 cup plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt
1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
3/8 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cucumber, seeded and shredded
1 garlic clove, minced
2 cups shredded skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast
3 ounces multigrain pita chips (used flatbread)
Added tomatoes


1. Combine first 8 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add chicken; toss to coat. Serve with pita chips.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 230; Fat: 7.5g; Saturated fat: 1.5g; Monounsaturated fat: 1.4g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.1g; Protein: 23g; Carbohydrate: 18.7g; Fiber: 2.1g; Cholesterol: 53mg; Iron: 1mg; Sodium: 569mg; Calcium: 60mg

Cooking Light APRIL 2012

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Kraft Fresh Take Southwest 3 Cheese Review

Kraft  Fresh Take Southwest 3 Cheese Review

This isn't something D and I usually buy (mostly because I can't pronounce half the stuff in the ingredients). However, I had a $.75 coupon, Kroger had a buy this and a pack of chicken and get $1 off your bill, and it was on sale for $2.25.  So, we decided to try it.

It was pretty good. It tasted like Chicken with Southwest Seasoning, cheddar and breadcrumbs.
I don't think I would buy it again, because D could make it cheaper (unless the stars aligned again).  But if I was alone and had to cook, I would make it for myself.

Fresh Take from Kraft, courtesy of Kraft

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Crab Cakes with Spicy Rémoulade

 D only made the remoulade for this recipe. It was good. He made the Family Recipe Crabcakes the main part. I would have again.

We had with a salad.

Crab Cakes with Spicy Rémoulade

For a milder sauce, omit the red pepper. Serve with Mixed Greens Salad.

YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: 2 crab cakes and about 2 tablespoons sauce)
HANDS-ON:20 Minutes
TOTAL:20 Minutes
COURSE: Main Dishes

Crab cakes:
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat, shell pieces removed
2 tablespoons finely chopped green bell pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons canola mayonnaise
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 green onions, finely chopped
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup panko, divided
2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1/4 cup canola mayonnaise
2 teaspoons minced shallots
1 teaspoon chopped fresh tarragon
1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
1 1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
3/4 teaspoon capers, chopped
3/4 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

1. To prepare crab cakes, drain crabmeat on several layers of paper towels. Combine crabmeat, bell pepper, and the next 4 ingredients (through egg), tossing gently. Stir in 1/4 cup panko. Place remaining 3/4 cup panko in a shallow dish.

2. Divide crab mixture into 8 equal portions. Shape 4 portions into 3/4-inch-thick patties; dredge in panko. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil. Add dredged patties; cook 3 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove from pan. Repeat procedure with the remaining crab mixture, panko, and oil.

3. To prepare rémoulade, combine 1/4 cup mayonnaise and remaining ingredients; serve with crab cakes.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 320; Fat: 17g; Saturated fat: 1.2g; Monounsaturated fat: 8.7g; Polyunsaturated fat: 5g; Protein: 26.8g; Carbohydrate: 11.7g; Fiber: 0.9g; Cholesterol: 166mg; Iron: 1.5mg; Sodium: 555mg; Calcium: 133mg

Cooking Light APRIL 2012

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Spicy Basil Chicken

So D made this fast. I assume it was easy to make considering how fast it was to make.

It had a decent amount of heat. I was surprised D didn't bring out more chili-garlic paste. I would have used it, to make it more spicy. Oh well. We both thought it would be good with some peanuts thrown in, but we didn't put them in there.

We had over rice. We will have again.

Spicy Basil Chicken

Photo by ALB

Substitute lower-sodium soy sauce if fish sauce is difficult to find. The flavor won't be as complex, but soy sauce will still add a salty note. You can also substitute thinly sliced Thai bird chiles or jalapeño for the sambal oelek—or leave it out completely if you'd rather enjoy a mild dish. Serve with Brown Rice with Sesame and Sautéed Snow Peas and Peppers.

YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: 3/4 cup)
HANDS-ON:19 Minutes
TOTAL:19 Minutes
COURSE: Main Dishes

2 teaspoons canola oil
1/4 cup minced shallots
3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
6 (4-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons lower-sodium soy sauce
1 1/4 teaspoons chile paste with garlic (such as sambal oelek)
1 teaspoon water
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sliced basil leaves

1. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic to pan; cook for 30 seconds or until fragrant. Add chicken to pan; cook 13 minutes or until chicken is done. Combine fish sauce and the next 6 ingredients (through salt) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add fish sauce mixture to pan, and cook for 1 minute or until mixture thickens, stirring to coat chicken. Remove from heat. Stir in basil.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 291; Fat: 15.2g; Saturated fat: 3.7g; Monounsaturated fat: 6.4g; Polyunsaturated fat: 3.6g; Protein: 31.3g; Carbohydrate: 5.6g; Fiber: 0.1g; Cholesterol: 112mg; Iron: 1.9mg; Sodium: 615mg; Calcium: 31mg

Cooking Light APRIL 2012

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Chili-Cheese Mac

I think I liked this better than D. He thought it needed salt and more flavor. I thought there needed to be more in the bowl.

It was creamy and I liked the kick from the Rotel. D said it was ridiculously easy. So we'll have again.

We didn't have a side.

Chili-Cheese Mac

Photo by ALB

YIELD: Serves 6 (serving size: 1 cup)
TOTAL:20 Minutes
COURSE: Main Dishes

1 teaspoon canola oil
3/4 pound ground round
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 cups fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth
1 cup water
1 (10-ounce) can mild diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
8 ounces uncooked elbow macaroni
1/2 cup fat-free milk
4 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese
4 1/2 ounces finely shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese

1. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add oil. Add beef and next 4 ingredients; cook 3 minutes. Add broth, water, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Stir in macaroni; cover and cook 10 minutes or until macaroni is done.

2. Heat milk and cream cheese in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook 4 minutes or until cheese melts, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. Stir in cheddar. Add cheese sauce to macaroni mixture; toss well to coat.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 342; Fat: 12.3g; Saturated fat: 6g; Monounsaturated fat: 3.7g; Polyunsaturated fat: 1.1g; Protein: 25.7g; Carbohydrate: 32.7g; Fiber: 1.8g; Cholesterol: 60mg; Iron: 2.3mg; Sodium: 652mg; Calcium: 363mg

Cooking Light APRIL 2012

Caribbean Spareribs

So almost every time D grills ribs, he makes these because they are my favorite.

I don't know how to make ribs so all I can tell you is they rock.

Once again, if you have a charcoal grill, you really need to buy Weber's Real Grilling by Jamie Purviance. Another recipe he knocks out of the park.

Caribbean Spareribs

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Grill Time: 2.5 to 3 hours
Serving Size: 4-6

2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons granulated garlic
2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground allspice

1 cup beer
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup yellow mustard
1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 racks pork sparerib racks, 4-5 lb. each

1. To make the rub: In a small bowl,mix the rub ingredients together with your fingertips.

2. To make the mop: In a medium bowl, whisk the mop ingredients.

3. Put the spareribs, meaty side up, on a cutting board. Follow the line of fat that separates the meaty ribs from the much tougher tips at the base of each rack, and cut off the tips. Turn each rack over. Cut off the flap of meat attached in the center of each rack. Also cut off the flap of meat that hangs below the shorter end of the ribs. (The flaps and tips may be grilled separately, but they will not be as tender as the ribs). Remove the thin membrane from the back of each rack of ribs. If using a rib rack, cut the racks in half crosswise. Allow the ribs to stand at room temperature for 20-30 minutes before grilling. Season the ribs all over with the rub.

4. Grill over Indirect Low heat for 1 hour (the grill temperature should be about 300°). After 1 hour, baste the ribs with the mop and continue to baste every 30 minutes or so until the meat has shrunk back from the rib bones about 1/2-inch and the meat is tender enough to tear with your fingers. The total grilling time will be 2-1/2 to 3 hours. Transfer the ribs to a baking sheet and tightly cover with foil. Let rest for 30 minutes before serving.

Cheesecake-Stuffed Dark Chocolate Cake

So I found this recipe when my brother and I were looking for a cheesecake recipe. Since he was making Christmas dessert, I put this recipe in the back of my head, and decided I would make it for the dogs' birthday party (no, they didn't eat the cake).

The chocolate cake was simple to make. The chocolate pieces that sunk to the bottom, did stick in the cake pans, but that meant the cook got to try some of the cake.

I really don't know if I would cut the cake in half when I make it again, because it made the cake VERY flimsy.

I didn't use store-bought icing. I made my own (5TBSP Butter, 8 oz Cream Cheese, 2C powdered sugar, sifted--mix). I used 3 batches. I ran out of frosting, so next time use 4.

Sara Lee doesn't sell Cheesecake Bites anymore. So I bought 2 Sara Lee Cheescakes and cut them into bites.

This is where things got dicey...The cakes were flimsy and the Cheesecake bites were a lot of weight. So the cakes cracked, after the first round of frosting. Then the cakes weren't level, so that was an issue. After the final round of icing, I was very upset about the look of my cake because no amount of "glue" would hold the crack together. D told me to drink a lot of Guinness (it was St. Patrick's Day, after all), and that it would look perfect. I drizzled the caramel over the cake and put it back in the fridge (I skipped the cookies). That all ran together, so it was more of a glaze...

Now you're thinking, with all that, why would she ever make this cake again?

This cake served 20 people including 7 kids. My friend C asked me to send the recipe to her mom, because she wants it for her birthday. It was rich. The crunch of the Hershey Bars mixed with the creaminess of the frosting, mixed with the cheesecake...OMG!

So next time I'll skip the 4 layers of cake so it is a little stronger. But I will make again.

UPDATE: Missed the coarsely chopped direction of the cheesecake ingredient...this would have made that part MUCH easier.

Cheesecake-Stuffed Dark Chocolate Cake

YIELD: 12 servings
COOK TIME:32 Minutes
PREP TIME:26 Minutes
OTHER:1 Hour, 10 Minutes
COURSE: Desserts, Cakes/Frostings

Unsweetened cocoa (didn't use...but used PAM)
1 (18.25-oz.) package devil's food cake mix
1 (3.4-oz.) package chocolate instant pudding mix
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
1 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/2 teaspoons chocolate extract (optional)...didn't use
1 teaspoon almond extract
3 (1.55-oz.) milk chocolate bars, chopped (we tested with Hershey's)
3 (16-oz.) cans homestyle cream cheese frosting (made my own...recipe above)
3 (7.75-oz.) boxes frozen cheesecake bites, coarsely chopped (we tested with Sara Lee)...used 2 Regular SL Cheesecakes
1 (12-oz.) jar dulce de leche caramel sauce (we tested with Smucker's)
Double chocolate rolled wafer cookies, coarsely broken (we tested with Pirouline)...didn't use
Chocolate fudge rolled wafer cookies, coarsely broken (we tested with Pepperidge Farm)...didn't use


Grease 2 (9") round cakepans, and dust with cocoa.

Beat cake mix and next 7 ingredients at low speed with an electric mixer 1 minute; then beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Fold in chopped milk chocolate bars. Pour batter into prepared pans.

Bake at 350° for 32 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched. Cool cake in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool completely on wire racks. Wrap and chill cake layers at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours. (This step enables you to split cake layers with ease.)

Using a serrated knife, slice cake layers in half horizontally to make 4 layers. Place 1 layer, cut side up, on a cake plate. Spread with 1/2 cup cream cheese frosting; sprinkle with one-fourth of chopped cheesecake bites. Repeat procedure with remaining 3 layers, frosting, and cheesecake bites, omitting cheesecake bites on top of last layer. Frost sides and top of cake with remaining frosting. Drizzle desired amount of caramel sauce over cake, letting it drip down sides. Chill until ready to serve. Decorate cake with rolled wafer cookies and remaining chopped cheesecake bites. Store in refrigerator.

Oxmoor House JUNE 2007

Monday, March 12, 2012

Superfast Kofte

So this was very easy to make. If I could chop fast it probably would have taken me 10 minutes to prep. It took me 20 minutes to prep.

I wasn't sure about the mint but went for it anyway.

It was really good, and I liked it. I would definitely have again. I had with fries.

Superfast Kofte

Photo by ALB

Kofte, Turkish meatballs often grilled on a stick, can be made from ground lamb, beef, or a combination.

YIELD: 4 servings (serving size: 2 filled pita halves)
COURSE: Main Dishes

1/2 cup prechopped white onion
1/3 cup dry breadcrumbs
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
1 pound lean ground round
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
Cooking spray
8 (1/4-inch-thick) slices plum tomato (about 2 tomatoes)
4 (6-inch) pitas, split (used flatout bread)
1/4 cup plain yogurt (used Greek fat-free yogurt)

Preheat broiler.

Combine first 12 ingredients in a large bowl; stir until just combined. Divide mixture into 8 equal portions; shape each portion into a (2-inch) patty. Place patties on a jelly-roll pan coated with cooking spray. Broil 4 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. Place 1 tomato slice and 1 patty in each pita half; top each half with 1 1/2 teaspoons yogurt.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 423; Calories from fat: 24%; Fat: 11.4g; Saturated fat: 4.3g; Monounsaturated fat: 4.3g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.9g; Protein: 31.6g; Carbohydrate: 46.7g; Fiber: 3.2g; Cholesterol: 75mg; Iron: 4.3mg; Sodium: 766mg; Calcium: 114mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2007

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Lebanese Peppers

So D is out of town, so I made something I knew he wouldn't like (he doesn't like stuffed peppers, and isn't as fond of the allspice/cinnamon in meat as I am). He did make me rice before he left, so I wouldn't have to try to do that part.

This was pretty easy to make. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to cook the ground beef before I baked the peppers but I didn't. That was ok. Next time, I would poke a hole in the bottom of the peppers to get some of the grease out.

The recipe was overall easy to make, just constantly moving, chopping, stirring, etc.

I liked it.

Since I was by myself, I had no side.

Lebanese Peppers

Photo by ALB
Photo by ALB

YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: 1 stuffed pepper, about 3 tablespoons sauce, and 1 lemon wedge)
HANDS-ON:50 Minutes
TOTAL:1 Hour, 10 Minutes
COURSE: Main Dishes

4 medium red bell peppers (used green because I don't like red all that much)
 1 teaspoon black pepper, divided
1/2 cup fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth, divided (I used 3/4C because I can't read)
1 cup cooked long-grain white rice, cooled
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 pound ground sirloin
2 cups water
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley, divided
2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 tablespoons plain 2% reduced-fat Greek yogurt
4 lemon wedges (didn't use)

1. Preheat oven to 400°.

2. Cut tops off bell peppers; reserve. Discard seeds. Place peppers in a microwave-safe baking dish; cover with damp paper towels. Microwave at HIGH 6 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.

3. Combine 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 cup broth (I used 1/2C by accident), and next 5 ingredients. Divide beef mixture among peppers; top with tops. Pour 2 cups water into dish; cover. Bake at 400° for 45 minutes. Sprinkle peppers with 1/4 cup parsley.

4. Heat a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan. Add onion; sauté for 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic; sauté for 30 seconds. Add 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, 1/4 cup broth, tomatoes, and the next 4 ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup parsley and yogurt. Serve with lemons.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 454; Fat: 12.1g; Saturated fat: 4.1g; Monounsaturated fat: 5.5g; Polyunsaturated fat: 0.9g; Protein: 25.2g; Carbohydrate: 60g; Fiber: 6.2g; Cholesterol: 56mg; Iron: 5.8mg; Sodium: 507mg; Calcium: 90mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2012

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Mushroom Rigatoni Bake

So I quietly slipped this into this week's rotation after reading the review from FFG. Reason for "quietly" was there was no meat. D suggested sausage when he found out, but calorie wise we stuck with mushrooms.

We had 8oz of regular mushrooms so we just bought cremini. D used 16oz of mushrooms total.

D said the directions were stupid using the Dutch Oven. So he didn't use it.

The taste was really rich. I liked we could taste the cheese flavor (even though we used Romana). We will have again.

We had with Caesar Salad.

Mushroom Rigatoni Bake

A full cup of Italian Asiago cheese gives body and flavor to the velvety sauce, which is laced with sherry.

YIELD: 4 servings
COURSE: Casseroles

8 ounces uncooked gigli or radiatore pasta (used rigatoni)
2 teaspoons butter
1/4 cup sliced shallots
8 ounces sliced shiitake mushroom caps (used regular)
4 ounces sliced cremini mushrooms (used 8oz)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon dry sherry
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
1 cup (4 ounces) grated Asiago cheese, divided
Cooking spray
Thyme sprigs (optional)

Preheat oven to 375°.

Cook pasta according to the package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well. Set cooked pasta aside.

Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots; sauté 3 minutes. Add mushrooms, 1 tablespoon thyme, salt, pepper, and garlic; sauté 8 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Add sherry; cook 1 minute, stirring frequently. Remove from heat.

Place flour in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat; gradually add milk, stirring constantly with a whisk. Bring mixture to a boil; cook 1 minute or until slightly thick, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat; add 1/2 cup cheese, stirring until melted. Add pasta and mushroom mixture to cheese mixture, tossing well to combine. Spoon pasta mixture into an 8-inch square baking dish lightly coated with cooking spray; sprinkle evenly with remaining 1/2 cup cheese. Bake at 375° for 30 minutes or until cheese melts and begins to brown. Garnish with thyme sprigs, if desired.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 474; Fat: 16g; Saturated fat: 8g; Monounsaturated fat: 4.6g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.2g; Protein: 21.8g; Carbohydrate: 61.4g; Fiber: 3.3g; Cholesterol: 40mg; Iron: 3.9mg; Sodium: 745mg; Calcium: 386mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2004

Tex-Mex Hash Brown Casserole

So I think this was easy. I was sitting there while D was making it, but was distracted looking up why a helicopter was hovering over our house (I never found out). But I didn't hear him complain. So I'm going with it was easy.

It came out very hot. He took it out of the oven, then we walked the dogs for 10 minutes, and came back. He cut into it and heat escaped.

It was very filling. I wished the potatoes were saltier. But that is easily fixed with a salt shaker. We both liked it.

Tex-Mex Hash Brown Casserole

Photo by ALB
This simple skillet supper uses shredded potatoes as a base. The potato mixture cooks on the stove top first to get it browned and crisp on the bottom.

YIELD: Serves 6 (serving size: 1 wedge)
HANDS-ON:45 Minutes
TOTAL:1 Hour, 15 Minutes
COURSE: Casseroles, Main Dishes

4 teaspoons canola oil, divided
4 ounces Mexican chorizo
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup enchilada sauce
1/3 cup grated white onion
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 pounds Yukon gold or baking potatoes, peeled and shredded
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1/2 cup chopped avocado
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves
1/4 cup chopped white onion
6 radishes, thinly sliced (didn't use)

1. Preheat oven to 450°.

2. Heat a 10-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon canola oil to pan, and swirl to coat. Remove the casings from chorizo. Add chorizo to pan; sauté for 3 minutes, stirring to crumble. Add garlic, and sauté for 30 seconds. Remove sausage mixture from pan. Combine the sausage mixture and enchilada sauce.

3. Add remaining 3 teaspoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Combine grated onion, salt, pepper, potato, and egg; toss. Add potato mixture to pan, pressing gently; cook for 10 minutes (do not stir). Spread enchilada sauce mixture evenly over potato mixture; sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake at 450° for 20 minutes. Remove from oven; let stand for 10 minutes. Cut into 6 wedges.

4. Combine avocado and juice; toss gently. Stir in cilantro and remaining ingredients. Serve cilantro mixture with casserole.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 432; Fat: 20.2g; Saturated fat: 7.5g; Monounsaturated fat: 9.2g; Polyunsaturated fat: 2.1g; Protein: 17g; Carbohydrate: 47.1g; Fiber: 4.9g; Cholesterol: 72mg; Iron: 2.9mg; Sodium: 686mg; Calcium: 152mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2012

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Italian Meatball Sliders

So D made these. Typically we don't like sliders but we had ricotta from a week or so ago, and this sounded good. At the grocery we decided we were going to make bigger burgers, but the Kroger dude made the price of slider burgers $0.49 for us, so again, sliders.

D said they were very easy to make.

They were sooooooo good. It really took a lot not to have an extra half serving. We will definitely have again.

We had with spinach, egg, and mozzarella salad.

Italian Meatball Sliders

Photo by ALB

YIELD: Serves 6 (serving size: 2 sliders)
COURSE: Sandwiches

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 shallots, finely diced
1/3 cup part-skim ricotta cheese
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs), toasted
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
8 ounces lean ground pork
2 (4-ounce) links turkey Italian sausage, casings removed (used pork hot Italian)
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups lower-sodium marinara sauce
12 slider buns, toasted
12 basil leaves

1. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat; swirl to coat. Add garlic and shallots to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until shallots are softened, stirring frequently. Combine shallot mixture, ricotta, and next 8 ingredients (through egg) in a medium bowl. (Chopped and added the basil to everything). Shape mixture into 12 (1-inch) meatballs; flatten each meatball slightly.

2. Return pan to medium-high heat. Add remaining 2 teaspoons oil to pan. Add meatballs to pan; cook 6 minutes, turning once. Add marinara sauce; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 8 minutes or until meatballs are done. Top bottom half of each bun with 1 1/2 tablespoons sauce, 1 meatball, 1 basil leaf, and top half of bun.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 429; Fat: 16.3g; Saturated fat: 4g; Monounsaturated fat: 5.1g; Polyunsaturated fat: 4.2g; Protein: 25.4g; Carbohydrate: 60.5g; Fiber: 2.3g; Cholesterol: 85mg; Iron: 2.7mg; Sodium: 764mg; Calcium: 131mg

Cooking Light MARCH 2012

Basic Regular Pizza Crust

So D and I had extra Pizza Crust Yeast by Fleischmann's so instead of buying a Boboli, we decided to make it. Well, D made it. He said it was way easy to make. It also got dark enough in the oven.

Will definitely have again.

Basic Regular Pizza Crust

Use this easy pizza crust recipe with no need for rising time.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Bake Time : 12 to 15 minutes

Number Of Servings: 1 (12-inch) pizza

1-3/4 to 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 envelope Fleischmann's® Pizza Crust Yeast
1-1/2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup very warm water (120 to 130°F)*
3 tablespoons oil
1/2 to 1 cup pizza sauce
Other toppings as desired
1 to 2 cups (4 to 8 ounces) shredded mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 425°F.

Combine 1 cup flour, undissolved yeast, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add very warm water and oil; mix until well blended, about 1 minute. Gradually add enough remaining flour to make a soft dough. Dough should form a ball and will be slightly sticky. Knead** on a floured surface, adding additional flour if necessary, until smooth and elastic, about 4 minutes.

Pat dough with floured hands to fill greased pizza pan or baking sheet. OR roll dough on a floured counter to 12-inch circle; place in greased pizza pan or baking sheet. Form a rim by pinching the edge of the dough.

Spread with pizza sauce. Top with desired toppings and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake on lowest oven rack for 12 to 15 minutes, until cheese is bubbly and crust is browned.

*If you don't have a thermometer, water should feel very warm to the touch.

**To knead the dough, add just enough flour to the dough and your hands to keep the dough from sticking. Flatten dough and fold it toward you.Using the heels of your hands, push the dough away with a rolling motion. Rotate dough a quarter turn and repeat the "fold, push and turn" steps. Keep kneading dough until it is smooth and elastic. Use a little more flour if dough becomes too sticky, always working the flour into the ball of dough.

Recipe Note: Use crust to make one thick crust 9-inch pizza. Increase baking time to 20 minutes.