Thursday, May 11, 2017

French Fries with Bulgogi and Caramelized Kimchi

This is probably a one and done recipe.  It was good, but it was spicy.  And for that many calories I'd rather have the Asian Pork Nachos.  I don't really have much else to say about it.
I just like the nachos better.

French Fries with Bulgogi and Caramelized Kimchi

Photo by ALB

YIELD: 2 servings

1 (small) onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 pound boneless rib eye steak, cut into very thin, 3-inch slices
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
2 tablespoons Korean chile paste (gochujang)
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 cup kimchi
1/2 cup mayonnaise (used 1/4 C Hellman's Light)
3 tablespoons Sriracha, plus more for serving (used 1 1/2 TBSP)
1 pound hot french fries
1/2 C Shredded cheddar (used Reduced Fat),for serving

In a resealable plastic bag, combine the onion, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sugar, vinegar and sesame oil. Add the rib eye and toss to coat. Seal the bag and refrigerate overnight.

Drain the meat, pick off the solids and pat dry. In a large skillet, heat the vegetable oil until smoking. Add the meat and cook over high heat, turning once, until lightly browned, 4 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate and keep warm. Rinse out the skillet and wipe dry.

In a medium bowl, combine the sugar, vinegar, chile paste and soy sauce. Add the kimchi and toss to coat. Heat the skillet until very hot. Add the kimchi and cook over high heat until the liquid is thickened and glossy and the kimchi is browned in spots, about 5 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the 3 tablespoons of Sriracha.

Scatter the french fries on a platter and top with the bulgogi and kimchi. Drizzle with some of the Sriracha mayonnaise and sprinkle with cheddar, onion, sesame seeds and cilantro. Serve with additional Sriracha.

18 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Savory Vietnamese Beef Meatballs with a Sweet and Spicy Hoisin Dipping Sauce

So one of the things about meatballs...they need a bit of fat in them to keep them moist.  Lesson learned.  However, these weren't bad. Just a tad dry. They were very spicy due to the serrano peppers.  I think it was a first...I did not add any type of hot chile garlic sauce to an Asian-inspired dish.

Both D and I were hungry so we made this 3 servings.  We had with rice.

Savory Vietnamese Beef Meatballs with a Sweet and Spicy Hoisin Dipping Sauce

Photo by ALB

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Servings: 4 people

For the meatballs:
1 pound lean ground beef (used time use 90-10)
1 cup red onion finely chopped
1/3 cup cilantro roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic finely chopped
1 tablespoon ginger peeled and finely chopped
1 1/2 tablespoon fish sauce
1/2 tablespoon honey
1 Thai chili finely chopped (optional)
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil

For the dipping sauce:
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons water
1 Thai chili finely chopped (optional)

Put all the ingredients for the meatballs in a food processor and blend until everything is mixed and minced. Transfer to a bowl.

Put a little oil in your hands, just enough to lightly coat fingers and palms and use a tablespoon to scoop up the beef mixture so the meatballs are the same size. Repeat process until all the beef mixture is used.

In a deep pan over medium high heat, add oil and the meatballs. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Turn the meatballs over, cover and cook for another 5 or until meatballs are golden brown.

Mix all the ingredients for the dipping sauce in a bowl and serve together with beef meatballs. Pour over or use as a dipping sauce.

Serve with rice, tomatoes and a few cilantro leaves.

8 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 3 servings)

Monte Cristo Flatout Sandwich

My SIL liked or shared this recipe on Facebook, and I saw it. It looked simple, and like a good quick lunch, so I decided to try it.  I should say that I have no idea what a Monte Cristo Sandwich should taste like, so I'm not sure if this is one, but it was good.

It is pretty simple and if you mix the egg wash in a plastic container, you can put it back in the fridge when you want to make the second sandwich...  I had 4 sandwiches over the course of a weekend.

So I would make again.  My points came out differently, than the writer's though.

Monte Cristo Flatout Sandwich

Photo by ALB

Adapted from: Drizzle 
Prep time: 5 mins
Cook time: 10 mins
Total time: 15 mins
Serves: 2 6sp/6pp each (I got 9sp, maybe it was the bread I used)

2 Everything Flatout fold-it breads (I used some Ancient Grains Flatout Fold-It Bread)
1 egg
1 egg white (I use 2TBSP liquid egg)
1 Tbsp milk (I used FF half and half, it's what I had)
Dash of salt and pepper
Pinch of paprika
1 Tbsp ranch dressing
4 oz deli ham
4 Tbsp shredded asiago cheese (I used 5-Cheese Italian Blend)

In a bowl (big enough to dip your folded flatout) whisk together your egg, liquid egg, milk, salt and pepper and pinch of paprika.

Spray a medium size frying pan with some non stick spray and heat on stove top over medium.

Lay out your fold it breads and spread ½ Tbsp of your ranch dressing over each fold it.

Place 2 oz of deli ham on each and top with 2 Tbsp of your cheese, fold sandwich over and dip thoroughly in your egg mixture.

Cook in pan, flipping over after 5 minutes, be sure to get around your edges as well.

Serve immediately

9 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 2 servings)

One-Skillet Chicken With Buttery (or no Butter) Orzo

For once, Kroger had all the ingredients at the same time!!!  We lucked out.

OK, this recipe made me laugh.  Not so much looking at it.  But when D said it was ready, he said, "I didn't put any butter in it."  I said, "Didn't it have butter in the title?"  He said, "Yeah, but I thought it would be too much.

He said with the skin on the chicken, it provided enough drippings to cook everything else.  So that's what he did.

I liked it a lot.  He thought the fennel was a little overpowering.  I can't remember if he said it was easy or not, so I hope we have it again.  We had with green beans.

One-Skillet Chicken With Buttery (or no Butter) Orzo

Photo by ALB

4 SERVINGS (we got 6 servings, because we aren't sure how to divide 6 pcs of chicken into 4 servings)
Adapted from Bon Appetit

Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
6 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 2 pounds total), patted dry
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
1 fennel bulb, chopped, plus fronds, chopped
1 leek, white and pale green parts only, chopped
8 ounces orzo
⅓ cup dry white wine
2½ cups low-sodium chicken broth, divided
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

Preheat oven to 400°. Rain salt and then some pepper all over chicken. Heat 2 Tbsp. butter in a medium cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Nestle chicken, skin side down, in skillet in a single layer with no gaps (if you can’t quite fit them all, wait until chicken shrinks slightly, then puzzle in the remaining pieces). Cook until meat is opaque around the edges and skin is deep golden brown, 6–8 minutes. Turn chicken skin side up and transfer skillet to oven; bake, uncovered, until chicken is cooked through, 10–15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate.

Set same skillet over medium; combine fennel bulb and leek in skillet and sprinkle in some salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, until leek is looking golden around the edges, about 5 minutes. Add orzo and cook until pasta is darkened (it will take on a brown hue) to a nice nutty brown in spots and toasty smelling, about 3 minutes. Pour in wine and cook, stirring, until liquid is evaporated, about 1 minute. Add broth ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly and letting broth absorb before adding more, until orzo is tender and broth is mostly absorbed but pan is not dry, 10–15 minutes.

Remove skillet from heat, Taste and add more salt and pepper to your liking; mix in lemon juice and remaining 1 Tbsp. butter, then chopped fennel fronds. Pile chicken on top and finish with lemon zest.

Nutritional Content (at 4 Servings)
Calories (kcal): 810; Fat (g): 39; Saturated Fat (g): 14; Cholesterol (mg): 290; Carbohydrates (g): 51; Dietary Fiber (g): 4; Total Sugars (g): 6; Protein (g): 57; Sodium (mg): 290

10 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 6 servings)

Friday, April 28, 2017

Crack Broccoli

So this was good.  I'm not sure it was "crack-worthy" as I've never done crack.  Also D forgot the cheese.  But Broccoli with's very good.  He was eh about it, but I think he is tired of broccoli.  Me, I liked it a lot.

We had with Chicken and Mushrooms.  We would have again.

Crack Broccoli

Photo by ALB


1 and ½ pounds broccoli crowns (roughly 2 heads)
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil (used 1 1/4 TBSP)
4 garlic cloves, pressed
large pinch of dried red pepper flakes
½ teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons raw, sliced almonds (with or without skin)
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
2 – 3 tablespoons freshly grated aged pecorino cheese (didn't use)
zest of half a lemon

Preheat the oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil. Trim any dry, tough ends of the broccoli crowns, leaving roughly 2-inches of stalk attached. Slice the broccoli into ½-inch-thick steaks, starting in the center of each broccoli crown and working out to the edges, reserving any small or medium florets that fall off for roasting. Slice any large remaining florets in half lengthwise.

In a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, pressed garlic, and red pepper flakes. Add the broccoli steaks and toss gently until evenly coated. Arrange the broccoli, cut-side down, on the lined sheet pan, setting them apart slightly. Sprinkle with salt.

Roast the broccoli for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, flip the broccoli, and sprinkle the almond slices evenly across the sheet pan. Roast for an additional 8 to 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is caramelized and tender, and the almond slices are toasted and golden.

Transfer the broccoli to a platter, toss gently with the lemon juice and top with the grated cheese. Garnish with fresh lemon zest. Serve hot or at room temperature.

2 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Chicken with Mushrooms

This was pretty good. Very simple and very fast which means it was excellent.
On top of that, it uses ingredients we usually have in the house.

We had with Crack Broccoli and pasta.

Chicken with Mushrooms

Photo by ALB

Chicken cutlets are sauteed with button mushrooms for a quick and delicious one-skillet meal.

1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 pounds chicken cutlets
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves, chopped
1 pound button mushrooms, trimmed and quartered
1/4 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Place flour in a shallow dish. Season chicken with salt and pepper, then coat with flour, shaking off excess.

In a large skillet, heat oil and 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high. In batches, cook chicken until browned and cooked through, about 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate and tent loosely with foil.

Reduce heat to medium, add thyme, mushrooms, and remaining 2 tablespoons butter, and cook until softened, 6 minutes.

Add wine and broth and cook, stirring, until reduced by half, 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Return chicken to pan along with any accumulated juices; top with parsley.

9 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

One Pan Healthy Sausage and Veggies

So I saw this on Pinterest (shocking).  It looked easy, and it had red peppers (D loves them, I'm kind of green better). But it also had green beans and broccoli so WIN!

Smoked Sausage in the all pork variety comes in 12-16oz portions, so give 3 oz to your 3 dogs.  They will love you.

It was pretty tasty. More so the next day.  And it was really easy to clean up.

Would have again.

One Pan Healthy Sausage and Veggies

Photo by ALB

Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 30 mins
Total Time: 40 mins
 Servings: 4 if served with rice/quinoa (or if not)

Original Author: Chelsea 

2 cups (~1 small) red potato
3/4ths pound green beans
1 large head of broccoli (~ 1 and 1/2 cups)
1 and 1/2 cups chopped bell peppers (2 large or 6-7 mini sweet bell peppers)
9 ounces smoked sausage
6 tablespoons olive oil (you only need 3)
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes optional
1 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
Serve with: fresh parsley, quinoa/rice, lots of 4 TBSP freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a large sheet pan with foil or parchment paper.

Prep the veggies: chop the red potatoes (pretty small pieces here so they will be tender in time), trim the green beans and halve, chop the broccoli, chop the peppers into thick squares, and coin the sausage in thick slices.

Place all the veggies and sausage on a sheet pan. Pour the olive oil and all the spices on top. Toss to evenly coat all the veggies and meat.

Bake 15 minutes, remove from the oven and flip/stir all the veggies around. Return to the oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes or until vegetables are crisp tender and sausage is browned.

If desired, sprinkle freshly grated Parmesan cheese over the veggies and sausage as soon as they come out of the oven.

Enjoy with rice or quinoa and fresh parsley if desired.

13 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Tuscan Chicken with White Beans and Kale

I really like the taste of this.  D hated making it.  So much so, he left out some ingredients.  The only reason I noticed he did, was because the original picture from CL had red in it and ours did not.
He said there were way too many ingredients.  So we probably won't have again, which is a shame because I really liked it.  He added the tomatoes for left overs.  It still tasted good.

Tuscan Chicken with White Beans and Kale

Photo by ALB

ACTIVE TIME: 22 mins
TOTAL TIME: 22 mins
YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: 4 oz. chicken and 1 1/2 cups bean mixture)

This rustic chicken supper is a one-dish meal through and through: It all comes together in one skillet and includes the main (chicken), starch (creamy cannellini beans), and side (braised kale and tomatoes). It also couldn’t be faster or easier to throw together—just 22 minutes from start to finish. You can use either lacinato kale, the kind with dark, bumpy leaves, or curly kale for this dish; just make sure to remove the stems as they won’t have time to break down before the dish is done. Swap the chicken for boneless center-cut pork chops on another night.

2 tablespoons olive oil (used Cooking Spray)
4 (6-oz.) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 cup chopped yellow onion
1 cup chopped carrot
2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
5 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
8 ounces lacinato kale, stemmed and thinly sliced (about 1 bunch) (used 2 bunches of Kale, no idea what kind)
1 cup unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson)
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
2 (15-oz.) cans unsalted cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-oz.) can unsalted diced tomatoes, drained
1 tablespoon unsalted tomato paste

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Sprinkle chicken with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side (chicken will not be cooked through). Remove chicken from pan.

Add onion, carrot, thyme, and garlic to pan; sauté 5 minutes. Add wine; cook 2 minutes. Add kale; cook 3 minutes or until wilted. Stir in remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, stock, and remaining ingredients; bring to a simmer. Add chicken; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 4 minutes or until done.

Calories: 516; Fat: 13.7 g; Sat Fat: 2 g; Mono Fat: 6.6 g; Poly Fat: 1.6 g; Protein: 52 g; Carbohydrate: 43 g; Fiber: 12 g; Cholesterol: 124 mg; Iron: 5 mg; Sodium: 609 mg; Calcium: 179 mg; Sugars: 8 g; Est. Added Sugars: 0 g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2017

9 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)


I'm not sure how I feel about these.  I never had spaghetti squash before this.  So D and I tried it.  While not bad, they aren't the end-all-be-all either.  They tasted like yellow squash in string form.  So I can't imagine putting spaghetti sauce and parm cheese on it and faking anyone out.  Actually, I'm kind of grossed out by that .

However, considering we have had zucchini with queso fresco, and squash and zucchini with jalapenos, adding a "Mexican" flair to spaghetti squash wasn't creepy.

The taste of the filling was very good.  However, it tasted like taco meat on top of squash.  If I want to save calories/points, I think I would just put the filling on a 1-pt tortilla and call it a day. The other thing is tacos in my mind are typically cheap.  The squash alone was over $9, so I was kind of stuck on that.

We had with black beans.  I don't think we'll have again. Not horrid, just the price point was off for me.


Photo by ALB

Yield: 6 servings, Serving Size: 1 boat (we had 4 servings)
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour
Adapted from Skinny Taste

3 small spaghetti squash (24 oz each) (we used 2 squashes)
olive oil spray
1 lb 93% ground turkey (used 96%/4% ground beef)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 small onion, minced
2 tbsp bell pepper, minced
1/2 cup water
4 oz can tomato sauce
3/4 cup part-skim shredded Mexican cheese blend

For the Pico De Gallo: (bought fresh from the store)
1 cup chopped tomato
1/4 cup chopped scallion
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 jalapeno, minced
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

Preheat oven to 400F degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper (or two if they don’t fit). Cut the squash in half lengthwise, and use a spoon to scrape out the seeds and soft yellow strands. Spray the inside of the squash with olive oil and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Place the squash facedown on the baking sheet and bake for 50 minutes or until the flesh easily pierces with a fork.

Meanwhile, brown turkey in a large skillet breaking it into smaller pieces as it cooks. When no longer pink add dry seasoning and mix well. Add the onion, pepper, water and tomato sauce and cover. Simmer on low for about 20 minutes.

Combine the ingredients for the quick pico de gallo in a medium bowl. Set aside in the refrigerator until ready to eat.

Once the squash is cool enough to handle, use a fork to scrape the inside so the strands appear. Spoon scant 1/2 cup meat inside each squash bowl. Top each with 2 tbsp cheese and transfer them to the oven and bake another 5 minutes, until the cheese is melted. Remove from the oven, top with pico de gallo and serve immediately!

5 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Carne Asada Bowls

As always with a chopped salad we got 3 really huge servings.  D isn't a fan of leftover salad, so that's why.

Anyway, this was really good. He grilled the steak, and the rest came together.  We didn't have a side, but the salad was so huge, why would we?

Will have again.

Carne Asada Bowls

Photo by ALB

Serves: 4 (we got 3)

Cooking spray
1 (12-oz.) flank steak (used 1 lb)
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
2 teaspoons olive oil (used cooking spray)
3/4 cup chopped white onion
1/2 cup unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson)
1 (15-oz.) can unsalted pinto beans, rinsed and drained
3 cups chopped romaine lettuce
1 1/2 cups chopped tomato
1 ounce tortilla chips (used baked tortilla chips)
1 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
1 1/2 ounces queso fresco, crumbled (about 1/3 cup)
4 lime wedges (didn't use)

Heat a large skillet over medium-high. Coat pan with cooking spray. (D heated the grill). Sprinkle steak with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add steak to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until desired degree of doneness. (D did this, but on the grill). Place steak on a cutting board; let stand 5 minutes. Cut across the grain into slices; cut slices into 3/4-inch pieces.

Add oil to pan (used cooking spray); swirl. Add onion; sauté 2 minutes. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt, stock, and beans to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 4 minutes, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.

Divide lettuce among 4 shallow bowls. Top evenly with bean mixture, steak, tomato, tortilla chips, and avocado. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and queso fresco.

Serve with lime wedges.

Calories: 369; Fat: 15.1 g; Sat Fat: 3.6 g; Mono Fat: 6.9 g; Poly Fat: 1 g; Protein: 28 g; Carbohydrate: 31 g; Fiber: 10 g; Cholesterol: 56 mg; Iron: 4 mg; Sodium: 486 mg; Calcium: 133 mg; Sugars: 4 g; Est. Added Sugars: 0 g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2017

12 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 3 servings)

French Onion Chicken

So I assume D loves French Onion Soup, as he orders it all the time in restaurants.  His favorite protein is chicken, so when I saw this recipe, I figured he would be all for it, and I was correct.

He made it.  He thought it was a little weird you make chicken with beef broth, but didn't complain.  The result was huge portions, and a very flavorful dish.  We didn't have a side (the pasta was the side).

We will have again.

French Onion Chicken

Photo by ALB

Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 40 mins
Total time: 1 hour

Chunks of tender chicken tossed in a thick french onion gravy loaded with sautéed Vidalia onions and melted Swiss cheese.

Adapted from Mother Thyme
Serves: 4-6 (we got 6)

10oz uncooked penne
2 pounds Vidalia onions (or other sweet onion), peeled and sliced
Cooking Spray
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast, cubed
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon dried thyme
2 cups beef broth
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 cup shredded Italian 5-blend cheese
1 baguette, sliced

Prepare pasta according to directions on the box.

Meanwhile, spray cooking spray in a large oven safe skillet over medium heat.

Add onions and stir. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt.

Cook onions, stirring occasionally to avoid burning until onions are tender and slightly caramelized, about 20 minutes.

Stir in balsamic vinegar and cook for another 1-2 minutes.

Place cooked onions in a small dish and set aside.

Return skillet to stove over medium heat and add more cooking spray.

Season chicken with salt, pepper and thyme.

Add chicken and cook until all sides are brown and cooked thoroughly. Remove chicken from skillet.

Increase temperature to high. Add in beef broth and deglaze skillet. Reduce temperature back to medium. Gradually whisk in flour and butter until broth is thicken. Season with a pinch of salt, pepper and thyme.

Stir in cooked chicken and onions until combined with beef gravy.

Sprinkle with cheese and place in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes until cheese in melted and bubbly.

Sprinkle with a pinch of thyme if desired.  Mix with Pasta.

Serving Size: 1.5 Cups

11 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 6 servings)

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Guinness-Braised Beef Brisket

I think I'm just a eat a corned beef in public kind of person. It just tastes better out. Plus for me it is a one and done kind of dish. Don't really want left overs.

That said, it was still nice to have.  We went out last Saturday, and this cooked while we were out.  It was ok.  The broth was overly sweet, but that's probably why they said to discard it.  The meat was tender, and it didn't take on the broth taste.

If I had all the ingredients, I would have again. We had with Mashed Potatoes.

Guinness-Braised Beef Brisket

Photo by ALB

YIELD: 6 servings (serving size: 3 ounces)

2 cups water
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chopped celery
1 cup Guinness stout
2/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup tomato paste
1/4 cup chopped fresh or 1 tablespoon dried dill
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can low-salt beef broth
6 black peppercorns
2 whole cloves
1 (3-pound) cured corned beef brisket, trimmed

Combine first 11 ingredients in a large electric slow cooker, stirring until well blended; top with beef. Cover and cook on HIGH 8 hours or until beef is tender. Remove beef; cut diagonally across grain into 1/4-inch slices. Discard broth mixture.

Calories: 226; Calories from Fat: 39 %; Fat: 9.7 g; Sat Fat: 3.2 g; Mono Fat: 4.7 g; Poly Fat: 0.4 g; Protein: 17.9 g; Carbohydrate: 15.2 g; Fiber: 0.9 g; Cholesterol: 87 mg; Iron: 2.2 mg; Sodium: 1105 mg; Calcium: 28 mg

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2004


When I first saw this recipe, I thought it was going to be about Shrimp covered in Fritos, because of the Homesick Texan's little blurb about Fritos.  It wasn't, but that's ok.

I told D we should have this anyway, and he obliged.  He suggested Baked Tostitos, so that's what he did. He was going to sub some panko with that, but he just used the whole (6-1/2 oz) bag.  For some reason, I had decided this would be 2 servings.  Both D and I laughed during eating.  That is a lot.

We had with a salad.  As usual, a recipe from Homesick Texan that we will have again.


Photo by ALB

Yield: 4 servings

2 cups finely crushed tortilla chips (6 1/2 oz Baked Tostitos)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne
Kosher salt
1 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
½ cup ketchup
1 teaspoon horseradish (more like a TBSP)
1/2 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lime juice
Sliced lime, for serving

Preheat the oven to 450°F and grease a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Season the crushed tortilla chips with the pepper, garlic powder, and cayenne. Taste and adjust the seasonings if needed, adding salt to taste. (Depending on the chips, I usually start with ¼ teaspoon.)

Lightly salt and pepper the shrimp then toss with the flour. (If using frozen shrimp that’s been thawed in cold water, pat down the shrimp with a paper towel before seasoning so they aren’t too wet.) Beat the eggs until bright yellow and place ½ cup of the crushed tortilla chips into a bowl. (You only start with 1/2 cup so you can refresh the chips as you dredge, which keeps them from becoming too clumpy.)

Working in batches, dip the flour-coated shrimp into the eggs then dredge in the tortilla chips. Place coated shrimp on the baking sheet. A quarter-way through the process, refresh the tortilla chip dredge with another ½ cup fresh crushed tortilla chips, then continue to dredge. Repeat the process until all the shrimp are coated.

Bake uncovered for 7 minutes, then remove the sheet from the oven and flip the shrimp over to the other side. Return to the oven and cook for 5-7 more minutes or until the coating is lightly browned and the shrimp are pink.

As they are baking, to make a chipotle cocktail sauce stir together the ketchup, horseradish, chipotle powder, and lime juice. Taste and add salt, if needed. After the shrimp are done, serve warm with the chipotle cocktail sauce and limes on the side.

11 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Monday, March 20, 2017

Rosemary Cheddar Irish Soda Bread

It was close to St. Paddy's Day, and like everyone else, I started looking around for a Corned Beef Recipe.  On Pinterest, of course, I fell down a rabbit hole, and ended up finding this recipe.  I really thought it was from Williams-Sonoma, but apparently it was not.

Anyway, this was really easy.  Also 2 TBSP of rosemary is a lot (I only got 1 TBSP out of all that I cut off our bush).  I used my Kitchen Aid Mixer to do everything (except beat an egg with buttermilk), so it came together quickly.

We will have again, since D said, "It's the best bread you've made, yet."

Rosemary Cheddar Irish Soda Bread

Photo by ALB

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
Servings: 8 people
Author: foodnessgracious

2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cracked black pepper
2 tablespoons fresh chopped rosemary
2 cups grated sharp cheddar
1 cups buttermilk
1 whole large egg

Heat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly flour a non stick baking tray or spray with a non stick spray.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, cream of tartar, salt, pepper, rosemary and cheese. (I used the whisk attachment on the KitchenAid. Probably speed 3-4)

Add the egg to the buttermilk and beat until mixed. (I did this with a manual whisk)

Add the buttermilk mixture to the flour and lightly mix through until it becomes sticky and a ball forms. (used the dough hook on the Kitchen Aid.  Probably speed 3-4)

Dump the dough out onto a flour dusted work surface and roughly knead the dough into an ball shape.  (keep kneading in the Kitchen Aid, making sure to scrape the sides and bottom to incorporate everything...about 3-4 minutes at that).It may be on the wet side so have some extra flour on hand for dusting. (throw flour on a counter, dump the dough on the counter and shape into a ball).

Place the dough onto your prepared baking tray. Take a sharp serrated knife and cut an X on top of the soda bread.

Photo by ALB

Season the top with some more salt and pepper and bake in the oven for 25 minutes (25, and a toothpick was messy...30 and the toothpick was clean) and the top is golden brown.

Let cool for 20 minutes before slicing and serving with butter (or beer cheese soup).

Photo by ALB

8 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 8 servings)

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Tortellini, Chicken, and Arugula Salad

I saw this recipe in the latest magazine.  I showed to D and he said ok.  We have been slack going to the grocery store, so I went after work to pick up the ingredients, while he texted me to let me know what we did and didn't have.

Anyway, about 10 minutes after I got home, dinner was ready (he may have started boiling the water while I was at the store).  The taste was good, and a bit light.  D made it 3 servings, although I think I could have done 4.

We would have again, especially for how fast it was.

Tortellini, Chicken, and Arugula Salad

Photo by ALB

ACTIVE TIME: 10 mins
TOTAL TIME: 20 mins
YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: 1 1/2 cups)

1 (9-oz.) pkg. refrigerated cheese tortellini (such as Buitoni), cooked according to pkg. directions (ran under cold water to cool down after cooking)
8 ounces skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast, shredded (about 2 cups) (used breasts and sauteed)
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 cups baby arugula
1/3 cup thinly sliced shallot
3/4 ounce Parmesan cheese, shaved (about 1/4 cup)

Place tortellini and cooked chicken in a large bowl.

Combine garlic and salt on a cutting board. Mash with the side of a knife to form a paste. Place in a small bowl. Add oil, rind, juice, sugar, and pepper; stir with a whisk.

Add 2 tablespoons dressing to tortellini and chicken; toss to coat. Gently fold in arugula, shallot, and remaining dressing. Sprinkle with shaved Parmesan cheese.

Calories: 400; Fat: 18 g; Sat Fat: 4.9 g; Mono Fat: 9.6 g; Poly Fat: 2.1 g; Protein: 27 g; Carbohydrate: 35 g; Fiber: 3 g; Cholesterol: 77 mg; Iron: 2 mg; Sodium: 629 mg; Calciu:m 184 mg; Sugars: 4 g; Est. Added Sugars: 1 g

Cooking Light, April 2017

Monday, February 27, 2017

Chicken Tinga Tacos

D made these the other night.  I'm not sure if they were easy, but they were good.  Nice smoke flavor.

We had with refried pinto beans with chipotle.

Chicken Tinga Tacos

Photo by ALB

These bold and smoky tacos provide the perfect route to reinventing some leftover chicken. Serve them up with a crisp green salad for a light and refreshing weeknight supper.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 2 tacos)
Total time: 24 Minutes

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon fresh oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 small chipotle chile, canned in adobo
3/4 cup chopped tomato
1/4 cup unsalted chicken stock
1 tablespoon adobo sauce
2 cups shredded chicken breast
1 cup shredded dark meat chicken
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
8 (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1/2 cup cilantro
1 ripe peeled avocado, sliced
1 ounce queso fresco, crumbled
4 lime wedges

1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté 4 minutes. Add oregano, cumin, and chipotle chile; cook 1 minute. Add tomato, stock, and adobo; bring to a simmer. Cook 7 minutes. Place tomato mixture in a blender. Remove center piece of blender lid (to allow steam to escape); secure blender lid on blender. Cover opening with a kitchen towel (to avoid splatters); blend until smooth. Return sauce to pan over low heat. Add chicken and salt; cook 1 minute. Divide mixture among tortillas. Top evenly with sour cream, cilantro, avocado, and cheese. Serve with lime.

Nutritional Information
Calories: 402; Fat 18 g; Sat fat: 4.6 g; Mono fat: 8.8 g; Poly fat: 2.6 g; Protein: 30 g; Carbohydrate: 33 g; Fiber: 8 g; Cholesterol: 99 mg; Iron: 2 mg; Sodium: 502 mg; Calcium: 131 mg; Sugars: 4 g; Est. Added Sugars: 0 g

Cooking Light, January 2016

Korean-Style Pork and Rice

I am in love with ground pork.  Not sure why I like it so much, but I do.  This recipe came in the newest Cooking Light, and I asked D if we could have it.  Amazingly our Kroger had gochujang paste as well, so it wasn't even a hassle to find.

The dish is slightly spicy and garlicky.  D and I were watching different TV shows, and I texted him in the middle of eating, "This is so good."  We will have again.

Korean-Style Pork and Rice

Photo by ALB

TOTAL TIME: 20 mins
YIELD: Serves 4

Deeply savory gochujang adds a mild heat to the finished dish so kids can still enjoy; look for it on the Asian foods aisle.

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
12 ounces lean ground pork (used 1 lb)
3/4 cup finely chopped white onion
3/4 cup chopped green onions, divided
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/3 cup water
2 tablespoons gochujang sauce (such as Annie Chun's)
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
2 (8.8-oz.) pkg. precooked brown rice (such as Uncle Ben's) (used regular brown rice...cooked 3 Cups)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
4 lime wedges (didn't use)

Heat oil in a large skillet over high. Add pork; cook 5 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble. Add white onion, 1/4 cup green onions, and garlic; cook 4 minutes. Add 1/3 cup water; cook 1 minute, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Remove from heat; stir in remaining 1/2 cup green onions, gochujang, soy sauce, and brown sugar.

Heat rice according to directions.

Place 1/2 cup pork mixture and 3/4 cup rice in each of 4 bowls; top with cilantro, vinegar, and lime wedges.

Calories: 429; Fat: 17.4 g; Sat fat: 4 g; Mono fat: 2.7 g; Poly fat: 2.9 g; Protein: 23 g; Carbohydrate: 49 g; Fiber: 5 g; Cholesterol: 64 mg; Iron: 1 mg; Sodium: 532 mg; Calcium: 30 mg; Sugars: 7 g; Est. Added Sugars: 5 g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2017

13 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Spinach and Artichoke Penne with Chicken

So a few weeks ago, D made a recipe from Closet Cooking called Spinach and Artichoke Stuffed Chicken.  He views stuffing chicken as a PITA but did it anyway.  We each took a bite, realized the chicken was bad, and had to toss out the entire dinner. We were both bummed because it did taste good, minus the spoiled chicken.  So D said he would make it again, but he would just cut up the chicken and toss everything with penne.

So yesterday that is what he did.  It was basically Spinach and Artichoke Dip served on pasta with some chicken.  It was excellent.  We will have again.

Spinach and Artichoke Penne with Chicken

Photo by ALB

Adapted from Closet Cooking

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 5

4 (6 ounce) chicken breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and Pepper to taste
10 ounces spinach, thawed or wilted, squeezed of excess liquid and coarsely chopped
1 (14 ounce) can artichoke hearts, coarsely chopped
8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature (used low-fat)
1/2 cup mozzarella, shredded
1/4 cup parmigiano reggiano (parmesan), grated
salt, pepper and cayenne to taste
1 tablespoon oil (used cooking spray)
1 onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup chicken broth
10 oz uncooked Penne

1. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain.

2.  While pasta cooks, heat a large Dutch oven over medium-high. Add cooking spray to pan. Season the chicken with salt and pepper to taste. Add onion, chicken and garlic to pan and cook over medium heat for 4-5 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Stir in the artichokes, spinach, cheeses, seasoning and broth; heat through.

3. Drain pasta; toss with chicken mixture.

Yield: 5 servings.

14 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 5 servings)

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Spiced Grilled Chicken Thighs with Creamy Chile-Herb Sauce

This is one of those recipes that I'm not sure how we missed the first time.  It is chicken with favorite. Anyway, I saw it, showed it to D and he said he would make it.
Grilled chicken is always good, and then with the sauce.

We would have again.  We had with Spicy Fried Corn with Bacon and Chipotle.

Spiced Grilled Chicken Thighs with Creamy Chile-Herb Sauce

Photo by ALB

We love the contrast of the bright, herbaceous sauce with the smoky grilled chicken thighs.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 2 chicken thighs and about 2 tablespoons sauce)

3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, divided
1 tablespoon minced garlic, divided
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, divided
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
8 bone-in chicken thighs, skinned (about 2 pounds)
Cooking spray
2 cups fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves (used 2 C Cilantro instead)
2 tablespoons half-and-half
1 tablespoon minced seeded jalapeño pepper

1. Combine 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon lime juice, 2 teaspoons minced garlic, smoked paprika, 1 teaspoon sugar, cumin, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add chicken to bag; seal bag. Let stand 15 minutes, turning occasionally.

2. Preheat grill to medium.

3. Coat grill rack with cooking spray. Remove chicken from marinade; discard marinade. Sprinkle chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add chicken to grill rack; grill 8 minutes on each side or until done.

4. Place remaining 2 table­spoons oil, remaining 1 tablespoon juice, remaining 1 teaspoon garlic, remaining 1/2 teaspoon sugar, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, parsley, half-and-half, and jalapeño in the bowl of a mini food processor; process until finely chopped. Serve sauce with chicken thighs.

Nutritional Information
Amount per serving
Calories: 377; Fat: 18.5 g; Sat fat: 4 g; Mono fat: 8.9 g; Poly fat: 3 g; Protein: 45 g; Carbohydrate: 6 g; Fiber: 2 g; Cholesterol: 218 mg;  Iron: 4 mg; Sodium: 584 mg; Calcium: 84 mg

10 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Cooking Light, AUGUST 2015

Greek Chicken Nachos

So this was a slightly different take on nachos.  I helped D make it. Overall it was good, and I liked it.  We both thought the chicken should have a bit more spice on it (he sauteed chicken with Greek Seasoning...didn't buy a rotisserie).

We would still have again.

Greek Chicken Nachos

Photo by ALB

ACTIVE TIME: 24 mins
TOTAL TIME: 33 mins
YIELD: Serves 6 (we got 4)

3 (6-in.) whole-wheat pitas
Cooking spray
2 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided (used 2 TBSP, where was the division supposed to be)
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 cups shredded romaine lettuce
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 cup chopped English cucumber (used a regular one)
10 pitted kalamata olives, halved lengthwise (Didn't use)
8 ounces skinless, boneless rotisserie chicken breast, shredded (about 2 cups)
3 ounces part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 3/4 cup)
2 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1/2 cup) (used reduced fat)
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped fresh oregano

Preheat oven to 400°F.

Split each pita in half horizontally into rounds. Coat cut sides of pitas with cooking spray. Cut each pita half into 8 wedges. (It was actually easier to cut into quarters, then cut horizontally and then cut two more times to get the 8 wedges). Arrange half of wedges, cut side up, on a baking sheet lined with foil. Bake at 400 for 8 minutes or until browned; remove from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining wedges. Cool 10 minutes.

Combine oil, vinegar, and pepper in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, and olives; toss to coat.

Arrange all pita chips on foil-lined baking sheet so they overlap. Top with chicken, mozzarella, and feta. Bake at 400°F for 3 minutes or until cheese melts. Top with lettuce mixture and oregano. 

Nutritional Information (from CL with no substitutions/6 servings)
Calories: 343; Fat: 13.8 g; Sat fat: 4.5 g; Mono fat: 6.7 g; Poly fat: 1 g; Protein: 22 g; Carbohydrate: 35 g; Fiber: 4 g; Cholesterol: 51 mg; Iron: 3 mg; Sodium: 553 mg; Calcium: 219 mg; Sugars: 3 g

13 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 4 servings)

Cooking Light, December 2016

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Egg Roll Noodle Bowl

I showed this recipe to D and he said yes.  It looked pretty easy to make (I would have bought shredded coleslaw mix to make it easier but he used the food processor).  The portions were huge!  It needed a little bit of soy sauce and chile garlic sauce, but doesn't everything?  Would have again

Egg Roll Noodle Bowl

Photo by ALB

Amended from Taste of Home

Prep/Total Time: 30 min
YIELD:4 servings

1 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 pound ground pork (used 1 pound)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 cups shredded cabbage (about 1 small head)
2 large carrots, shredded (about 2 cups)
4 ounces rice noodles (used 8 oz)
3 green onions, thinly sliced
Additional soy sauce, optional

1. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; cook and crumble pork until browned, 4-6 minutes. Stir in soy sauce, garlic and seasonings. Add cabbage and carrots; cook 4-6 minutes longer or until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally.

2. Cook rice noodles according to package directions; drain and immediately add to pork mixture, tossing to combine. Sprinkle with green onions. If desired, serve with additional soy sauce.

Yield: 4 servings (1-1/2 cups)

Nutritional Facts (from Taste of Home with no changes)
1-1/2 cups: 302 calories, 12g fat (4g saturated fat), 38mg cholesterol, 652mg sodium, 33g carbohydrate (2g sugars, 4g fiber), 14g protein. Diabetic Exchanges: 2 medium-fat meat, 2 vegetable, 1-1/2 starch, 1/2 fat.

11 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions at 5 servings of 1-1/2 Cups) 

North-African Spiced Chicken with Roasted Cauliflower

I got this recipe from M, who happened to post it on Facebook one night, while I was scrolling through.  Actually, she posted all the ingredients and I asked her for the recipe.
Anyway she took a picture of the recipe and D made it.

We agreed with M, that it needed more spice.  But for how easy D said it was, we could have again.  The original recipe called for carrots, but carrots on their own are gross so we used cauliflower.

North-African Spiced Chicken with Roasted Cauliflower

Photo by ALB

1 TBSP Ancho chile powder
2 teaspoons ground caraway seeds
2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin seeds
1 teaspoon coarse black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
4 chicken hindquarters (1.5 pounds)
1 head of cauliflower
Grated zest and juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves

Preheat oven to 400.

Combine spices through salt and rub evenly over the chicken

Heat a large oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the olive oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the skillet.  Add the chicken and cook until browned, turning, once, about 10 minutes.

Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside on a plate. Add the cauliflower and 1- 2 TBSP of lemon juice to the skillet, scraping up and browned bits stuck to the pan. Place the chicken in the skillet. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast for about 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature of the chicken is 180 and the cauliflower is just tender.

Drizzle the remaining lemon juice over the chicken and cauliflower. Sprinkle with the lemon zest and the cilantro just before serving.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Shrimp and Black Bean Tacos

These were very easy. That aside, they need some tweaking, but because they were easy, they will get it.

First we used white rice because that's what we had. Second, we combined the rice and beans.  We decided after the fact they needed some seasoning (see my additions for next time).

We had with a southwest salad.

Shrimp and Black Bean Tacos

Photo by ALB

YIELD Serves 4 (serving size: 2 tacos)

A little bit of the black bean liquid brings the chunky mash together. The mash also helps to hold all the filling in place.

2 teaspoons canola oil (didn't use)
3/4 pound medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (15-oz.) can unsalted black beans
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
8 (6-in.) corn tortillas
1 cup hot cooked brown rice (used 1 cup cooked white rice)
1/2 cup fresh pico de gallo
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 ripe avocado, thinly sliced
Fresh cilantro leaves
(Next time, lime juice, 1/4 C cilantro, 1/2 tsp salt)

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add shrimp, 1 teaspoon cumin, and pepper; cook 5 minutes or until done, stirring occasionally. Remove shrimp from pan. Drain beans in a colander over a bowl, reserving 2 tablespoons liquid. Add beans (didn't do), reserved liquid (didn't do), 1/2 teaspoon cumin, and chili powder to pan; cook 3 minutes, mashing beans with a fork.

(Heated beans and added the Cup of rice mixing everything with the reserve liquid...add some lime juice, 1/4 C cilantro and 1/2 tsp salt next time).

Working with 1 tortilla at a time, heat tortillas over medium-high directly on the eye of a burner 15 seconds on each side (or microwave those suckers). Divide bean (and rice mixture), rice, shrimp, pico, onions, and avocado evenly among tortillas. Garnish with cilantro leaves; serve immediately.

Calories: 408; Fat: 11 g; Sat fat: 1 g; Mono fat: 4.9 g; Poly fat: 2.2 g; Protein: 22 g; Carbohydrate: 61 g; Fiber: 11 g;Cholesterol: 107 mg; Iron: 2 mg; Sodium: 323 mg; Calcium: 138 mg; Sugars: 4 g

10 Smart Points (my additions/subtractions)

Cooking Light, DECEMBER 2016

BBQ Beef-Stuffed Potatoes

D and I decided to make this.  We typically make 1 crockpot meal a week.  We both thought the potatoes in the crockpot was weird, so D was going to microwave them. However I was home so I baked them in the oven.

The result was pretty good. The BBQ won't win any contest, but again, another comfort food that is perfect and ready when you get home.  Working from home, the smell will make you hungry all day.

We cut the recipe to 4. It made big portions. (Even though I baked the potatoes, I still used the salt and oil, so I counted it for my nutritional purposes

BBQ Beef-Stuffed Potatoes

Photo by ALB

ACTIVE TIME: 15 mins; TOTAL TIME: 8 hrs, 15 mins
YIELD: Serves 6 (we got 4)

Be sure to wrap the potatoes in parchment paper; foil can add a metallic taste to the dish. (we baked out potatoes in the oven an hour before eating).

1/4 cup dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons unsalted tomato paste
2 tablespoons reduced-sodium Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 1/4 teaspoons black pepper, divided
1 1/2 pounds boneless chuck roast, trimmed
1 1/2 cups vertically sliced red onion
Cooking spray
6 (4-oz.) russet potatoes (used 4)
2 teaspoons olive oil (used 1 TBSP)
3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, shredded (about 3/4 cup)
6 tablespoons light sour cream
1/4 cup sliced green onions

Combine brown sugar, tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, 1 teaspoon salt, and 3/4 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl; rub generously over roast.

Place red onion slices in bottom of a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker coated with cooking spray; top with roast.

Rub potatoes with oil, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Wrap each potato in parchment paper; arrange on top of roast. (didn't do)

Cover and cook on LOW 8 hours or until tender. (baked potatoes in the oven for 1 hour with no type of wrap (with the salt and oil) or in the microwave)

Unwrap potatoes; split lengthwise, cutting to but not through the other side. Shred roast with 2 forks, and stir to combine with onion mixture.

Top each potato with 1/2 cup beef mixture, 2 tablespoons cheese, 1 tablespoon sour cream, 2 teaspoons green onions, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

NUTRITION INFORMATION (as written from CL, 6 Servings)
Calories: 385; Fat: 12.7 g; Sat fat: 6.1 g; Mono fat: 4.9 g; Poly fat: 0.7 g; Protein: 32 g; Carbohydrate: 37 g; Fiber: 3 g; Cholesterol: 92 mg; Iron: 4 mg; Sodium: 687 mg; Calcium: 173 mg; Sugars: 12 g

16 Smart Points (4 servings, my calculation)

Cooking Light, DECEMBER 2016

Chicken and Butternut Gnocchi

I got the January Cooking Light, and D and I found some good recipes in it.

This was one.  First, the sage really tied it together. It's not an herb we use a lot, but is a comfort food herb, if that makes sense.  Second, the portions were a decent size.

I think it was easy to make.  I didn't hear D make too many comments from the kitchen.  I would have again.  He said the flavor picked up the next day. I thought it lost a little. Either way, we both cleaned our plates.

D didn't think it needed chicken broth, so he didn't use it.  He also didn't use the oil.

Chicken and Butternut Gnocchi

Photo by ALB

ACTIVE TIME: 15 mins; TOTAL TIME: 30 mins
YIELD: Serves 4 (serving size: about 1 1/4 cups)

Prepared gnocchi doesn't require boiling; it can go right in the pan.

2 tablespoons olive oil, divided (didn't use)
4 (6-oz.) skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-in. pieces
3 cups (1/2-in.) cubed peeled butternut squash
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion
1 (12-oz.) pkg. whole-wheat gnocchi (used 16 oz Italian gnocchi)
3/4 cup unsalted chicken stock (such as Swanson) (didn't use)
2 tablespoons prepared refrigerated pesto
2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1/2 teaspoon chopped garlic
5 ounces baby spinach, chopped
1 ounce Parmesan cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup)

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add chicken; cook 5 minutes or until browned. Place chicken in a bowl.

Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in pan over medium. Add squash and onion; cook 8 minutes. Add squash mixture to chicken. Add gnocchi to pan; cook 2 minutes. Add chicken mixture, stock, pesto, sage, garlic, and spinach to pan; cook 1 minute. Top with cheese.

Calories: 526; Fat: 19.3 g; Sat fat: 4.5 g; Mono fat: 9.7 g;  Poly fat: 2.6 g; Protein: 43 g; Carbohydrate: 44 g; Fiber: 9 g; Cholesterol: 165 mg; Iron: 6 mg; Sodium: 748 mg; Calcium: 202 mg; Sugars: 4 g

11 Smart Points (based on my additions/subtractions)

Cooking Light, DECEMBER 2016