Thursday, April 29, 2010

Mashed Potato Skins: They Can Be Good For You


Mashed potato and potato skins are often prepared with lots of butter and frying. But did you know that they can be good for you? Potatoes and potato skins are rich in vitamin C, potassium, and healthy carbohydrates. Make them healthier with this Mashed Potato Skin recipe from Rachel Ray.

Mashed Potato Skins

6 slices turkey bacon
2 pounds small Yukon gold potatoes
Salt
1 cup buttermilk
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh chives
1/2 cup shredded extra-sharp cheddar cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Arrange the turkey bacon on a sheet pan and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until crisp. Cool and chop.
3. Put the potatoes in a medium sauce pan and cover with cold water. Bring the water to a boil and season with salt. Cook until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and mash potatoes with buttermilk and season with salt and pepper. Stir in the chives and cheddar and fold in the bacon.
4. Serve warm.

Tip: This is an excellent side dish to roast chicken or pepper-crusted steak. Add a side salad for variety.

By: Kristine Gonzaga

Friday, April 23, 2010

Spring Pasta With Asparagus and Tomatoes


Spring is the time for crisp-tender asparagus and sweet, juicy tomatoes. Both vegetables are loaded with fiber, B vitamins, antioxidants, and other essential nutrients. What better way to have them than tossed into a bowl of pasta for a light springtime meal? Get on with this Giada De Laurentiis recipe.






Penne with Asparagus and Tomatoes

8 ounces penne pasta
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups (about 9 ounces) cherry tomatoes
1 cup shelled fresh peas
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Save 1/2 cup of pasta water.

2. Saute garlic in oil over medium high heat. Add the asparagus, season with salt and pepper, and cook for three minutes until slightly soft. Add the cherry tomatoes and peas. Cook for two minutes then add chicken stock. Cook until the tomatoes start to burst and the stock is reduced by half.

3. Toss cooked pasta with vegetables. Add reserved pasta water and mix well. Garnish with Parmesan and basil.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, April 12, 2010

Cheer Up With Cherry Cheesecake


Celebrate spring with something decadent, rich, and healthy. Impossible? Not when you make this Cherry Ricotta Cheesecake from Ellie Krieger. It's creamy and loaded with calcium, protein, selenium, phosphorus, riboflavin, and Vitamin A.

Cherry Ricotta Cheesecake

cooking spray
16-ounce part-skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream
4 ounces reduced fat cream cheese, softened
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups fresh sweet cherries
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon unflavored gelatin
1 tablespoon warm water

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat a 9-inch springform pan with cooking spray and set aside.
2. Process ricotta in a food processor until smooth. Add sour cream, eggs, sugar, flour, cream cheese, lemon zest, vanilla, and salt. Blend well.
3. Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake until set. Transfer onto a wire rack to cool. Cover and chill for 3 hours.
4. Boil cherries, lemon juice, and honey in a sauce pan. Dissolve gelatin in warm water then stir in cherry mixture. Chill until thickened.
5. Top cheesecake with cherry mixture and serve.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Spiced Almond and Orange Cake


Indulge this Easter with this omega-3 rich cake that's also loaded with Vitamin C from Sandra Lee of the Food Network.

Cake:

18.25-ounce box spice cake mix
1/2 cup vanilla low-fat yogurt
3 eggs

Caramelized Orange:

1 cup orange juice
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 orange, thinly sliced


Cheese Frosting:

2 cups cream cheese frosting
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon cinnamon extract

Garnish:

2 cups sliced almonds, toasted

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly coat 2 (8-inch) cake pans with cooking spray. Set aside.
2. Mix cake ingredients in a large bowl with an electric mixer on low speed until smooth. Pour batter into prepared cake pans and bake for 30-35 minutes. When done, cool cakes, turn onto wire racks and level.
3. For caramelized oranges: Boil first three ingredients in a pan for 5 minutes. Add oranges and boil for 5 minutes more. Remove oranges to cool.
4. For frosting: Mix all ingredients until smooth.
5. Assemble cake: Fill cake layers with frosting and frost on the outside. Press almond slivers on the outside and arrange orange slices on top.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Broccoli for Brunch


What's healthy and green and goes great with eggs and cheese? Broccoli. You don't believe? Try this frittata recipe by Ellie Krieger and even your pickiest eater will agree. Loaded with cancer-fighting vitamins, antioxidants, and protein, this is the perfect wake up call on Sunday brunch.

Broccoli and Cheddar Frittata

4 large eggs
4 egg whites
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 small red onion, sliced
2 cups chopped cooked broccoli
1/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup shredded extra-sharp Cheddar

1. Whisk eggs and egg whites with water until frothy.
2. In an oven-proof non-stick skillet, heat oil over medium flame. Cook onions until soft then add broccoli. Cook for two minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Pour egg mixture over the vegetables to cover them evenly. Reduce the heat to low, cover skillet, and let egg set around the edges.
4. Sprinkle with cheese.
5. Place skillet under the broiler until eggs are set and the cheese melted. Cut into wedges and serve.

Tip: Serve frittata with a crisp salad and fruit for a complete and filling brunch.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Broccoli and Chicken Stir-fry


There's more to broccoli stir-fry than beef and oyster sauce. This Broccoli and Chicken Stir-Fry recipe from the Neely's can attest to that. It's loaded with cancer-fighting antioxidants, Vitamin C, iron, and B vitamins from the broccoli and lean protein from the chicken. Try it for a lighter take on this Chinese takeout favorite.

Broccoli and Chicken Stir-fry

2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon orange juice
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
1/2 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, sliced into chunks
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons peeled and chopped ginger
4 green onions, sliced
2 cups broccoli florets, blanched

1. Whisk the first 7 ingredients in a small bowl until the sugar and cornstarch are dissolved. Set aside.
2. Heat a wok over medium-high heat and coat with peanut oil. Stir-fry chicken pieces in batches until cooked through. Remove cooked chicken from wok.
3. In the same wok, saute herbs and spices until fragrant. Add chicken and broccoli. Stir until heated through.
4. Pour reserved sauce and stir until sauce is thickened. Serve warm.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

A Toast - Or Two - to Spring


Drinks are always part of springtime celebrations. Ditch the alcohol for these two Barefoot Contessa drinks that are loaded with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. They taste so good, you won't be missing alcohol.

Herbal Iced Tea

4 Celestial Seasonings Lemon Zinger tea bags
4 Celestial Seasonings Red Zinger tea bags
4 cups pure apple juice
4 cups water
ice

Directions
1. Bring water to a boil.
2. Steep eight teabags in the boiling water for 10 minutes, longer if you want stronger flavor. Discard teabags.
3. Combine tea with apple juice and refrigerate until chilled.
4. Serve over ice.

Tip: Add crushed mint leaves for flavor and garnish.

Sunrise Smoothie

1 cup chopped ripe strawberries
1 cup chopped seeded watermelon
1 cup chopped fresh peach
1 cup raspberry sorbet
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

Directions
1. Combine strawberries, watermelon, sorbet, peach, and orange juice in a blender. Process until smooth.
2. Add more orange juice if you want it less thick.
3. Serve in tall glasses over ice.

Tip: Add low-fat milk or yogurt for additional calcium.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sunny Tomato and Basil Soup


Summer tomatoes are sweet, but tomatoes that come in during spring are tart and tangy with a hint of sweetness perfect for a simmering pot of soup. Get your dose of lycopene, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, B vitamins, and other minerals with a steamy bowl of tomato and basil soup from Kathleen Daelemans of Cooking Thin.





Tomato and Basil Soup

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium sweet onion, chopped
1 can ground peeled tomatoes
5 cups vegetable or chicken stock
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh basil, thinly sliced

In a non-metallic soup pot, saute onions in olive oil until soft or for 10 minutes over medium high heat. Add the tomatoes and stock. Bring to a boil. When boiling, reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook until soup thickens slightly, about 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Process soup in a blender or food processor until smooth. Heat then stir in basil leaves. Serve immediately.

Tip: Drizzle olive oil on soup before serving for extra flavor. For a complete meal, serve soup with grilled cheese sandwich and a side salad.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Sweet Corn Spring Soup


With spring on the way, it's best to start weaning your appetite from hearty, rich stews and casseroles to lighter and healthier soups. This recipe from Ellie Krieger is loaded with spring bounty and nutrients such as antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Spring doesn't get any better than this sweet corn soup.

Sweet Corn Spring Soup

4 cups fresh corn kernels
2 cups non-fat milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups diced onion
1 cup red bell pepper
1 medium zucchini, diced
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
3/4 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup fresh basil leaves, sliced thinly

1. Process milk and half the corn in a food processor or blender until smooth. Set aside.
2. In a soup pot, heat oil and sauté onions, bell pepper, and zucchini until tender.
3. Add the broth and remaining corn. Bring to a boil.
4. Stir in the tomatoes and corn puree. Heat until warmed through.
5. Season with salt and pepper. Serve hot garnished with basil ribbons.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, March 15, 2010

Go Bananas Over Muffins


There are few things as satisfying as freshly baked muffins for breakfast. But when you think about the calories a single serving packs - it's enough to reconsider your breakfast choices. If you really want your muffins, here is a better choice from Prevention Magazine. It's home-made - portion control! - and full of vitamins, fiber, and minerals from bananas and omega-3 from walnuts. Make it for a new breakfast favorite.

Nutty Banana Muffins

1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 c mashed ripe banana
1 large egg
1/4 c butter substitute, melted
1/4 c 1% buttermilk
3 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 c + 2 tbsp chopped walnuts, divided

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Spray a muffin pan with cooking spray.
2. Mix dry ingredients in a bowl.
3. Whisk bananas, oil, vanilla, egg, buttermilk, and butter substitute until smooth. Slowly add flour mixture until well-blended. Fold in 1/3c walnuts.
4. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Top with remaining walnuts.
5. Bake for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Friday, March 12, 2010

Chicken Cacciatore: A Healthy Hunter Style Dish


Chicken cacciatore is an Italian staple. Cacciatore or "hunter-style" is a favored way of cooking game in Italy. A hearty stew, chicken cacciatore is robust and rich in antioxidants, lycopene, Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and lean protein. Try this version by Ellie Krieger:

Chicken Cacciatore

4 skinless, bone-in chicken breast halves
2 teaspoons olive oil
1 onion, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1/2 pound white mushrooms, sliced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 14 1/2-ounce can whole tomatoes in juice, chopped and juice reserved
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper

1. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Brown chicken. Set aside.
2. In the same pan, saute onions and peppers until soft.
3. Brown mushrooms. Toss garlic, cook until fragrant. Deglaze pan with wine and let simmer until reduced by half.
4. Add tomatoes and juice, red pepper flakes, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and oregano. Stir and let simmer for 10 minutes.
5. Add chicken to the sauce and let braise for 20 minutes until chicken is fully cooked.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, March 1, 2010

Sun-Dried Tomato and Artichoke Dip


Dips make a great addition to any party. Whether used to dress vegetables or chips, dips add interest and interactive options at any meal. But why settle for so-so dips loaded with mayonnaise or high-fat ingredients? Try this delicious and piquant vegetable-based dip from Martha Stewart for a dip that's high in fiber, vitamins, healthy oils, antioxidants, and flavor:

Sun-Dried Tomato and Artichoke Dip

9 ounces frozen artichokes, thawed and chopped
1/2 cup feta, crumbled
1 garlic clove
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons water
1/2 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes, plus more for garnish
1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
1/2 cup basil leaves
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Whole-wheat baguette slices, for serving


1. Combine 1/2 cup artichokes, lemon juice, 2 teaspoons water, garlic, and 1/4 cup feta in a food processor. Purée until smooth.

2. Toss artichoke purée with tomatoes, pine nuts, chopped artichokes, feta, and basil. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with sun-dried tomatoes.

3. Serve with baguette slices.

Tip: You can make the dip ahead of time. Stored in an airtight container and refrigerated, this dip keeps for three days.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Turkey and Black-Eyed Pea Salad


Having a salad for a main course is perfect, especially for spring and summer. Indulge in this Turkey and Black-Eyed Pea Salad from Food Network Magazine. It's rich in lean protein, tryptophan, vitamin C, B vitamins, iron, and fiber.

Smoked Turkey and Black-Eyed Pea Salad

2 cloves garlic, minced
4 sprigs fresh thyme
4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 10 oz box frozen black-eyed peas, thawed
1/3 cup sliced bread-and-butter pickles, plus 4 tbsp pickling liquid
8 oz smoked skinless turkey leg, shredded
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
10 cups torn arugula
2 stalks celery, chopped (with leaves)
1 tbsp Creole or whole-grain mustard
Kosher salt
Cayenne pepper

Sauté garlic thyme in one tbsp olive oil until fragrant. Add black-eyed peas and two tbsp of pickling liquid, cook until tender. Add turkey, cook for three minutes. Remove from heat then discard thyme. Season turkey and peas with salt and cayenne.

For the dressing, whisk mustard with two tbsp pickling liquid. Season with salt and cayenne to taste before whisking in three tbsp olive oil. Toss with arugula, tomatoes, pickles, and celery. Top with peas and turkey.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Thursday, February 18, 2010

All Spiced Up: Pork Tenderloin with Eggplant Relish


Pork tenderloin is a great source of lean protein - experts agree it is just as lean, if not leaner, as chicken breast. In addition to lean protein, pork tenderloin is also loaded with B vitamins and iron. Serve it spiced for a delicious kick like in this Food Network recipe.

Spicy Pork Tenderloin with Eggplant Relish

Relish
3 Hungarian peppers, halved and seeded
1 jalapeno pepper, halved
2 Japanese eggplants
1 bunch scallions
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled

Pork
2 pork tenderloins, cut into 4
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsps fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp paprika
2 tbsps parsley, chopped
salt and ground pepper

1. Broil vegetables for relish until charred. Cool, peel, and chop vegetables. Squeeze garlic from its skin and toss with the chopped vegetables.

2. Season pork with cumin, salt, and ground pepper. Heat olive oil over medium-high heat then cook pork for six minutes, until golden. Reduce heat and cook for eight minutes more. Set aside.

3. De-glaze pan with lemon juice, add relish, and season with paprika, salt, and pepper. Heat through, then add parsley.

4. Slice pork and serve with eggplant relish as a side.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Friday, February 12, 2010

A Healthy Take on Burgers


You need not use meat substitutes or tofu for a healthier burger. With a few changes in ingredients, you can have healthier and authentic-tasting burgers as proven by this Martha Stewart recipe. It is leaner, full of fiber, and rich in vitamins and minerals.

Grilled Burgers and Vegetables on a Bun

Burgers
2 lbs lean ground beef or turkey
1 cup minced basil leaves
1 fresh red chili pepper, minced
1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
salt to taste

Vegetables
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 large green zucchini, cut into 1-inch-thick slices
2 medium tomatoes, preferably heirloom or orange, cut into 1-inch-thick slices
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

Toasted whole-wheat buns

1. Preheat grill. Combine ingredients for burgers in a mixing bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 10 minutes.
2. Marinate vegetables in olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and vinegar.
3. Divide burger mixture into eight and form a patty with each portion. Grill burgers for two minutes on each side.
4. Grill vegetables until browned on all sides.
5. Assemble burgers by placing a patty on a toasted bun and topping it with grilled vegetables.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Rancher's Eggs: A Mex-Tex Take on Brunch


When you have some guests over for brunch, serving something familiar but with a twist is a heart-warming and ingenious gesture. Add interest to your brunch fare with this egg recipe from Martha Stewart. Rich in protein, omega-3, and antioxidants, Rancher's Eggs are sure to please your guests and benefit their health:

Rancher's Eggs

6 large eggs
2 large egg whites
1 tbsp olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
2 jalapeno peppers seeded and chopped
1/4 cup crumbled soft goat cheese
15 ounces black beans, drained and rinsed
Coarse salt and ground pepper

1. Set broiler 4 inches from the heat source and preheat. Beat eggs, egg whites, and parsley together. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Heat olive oil and sauté onions, tomatoes, and jalapeno peppers until softened in oven-proof, nonstick pan. Add egg mixture.
3. Sprinkle eggs with cheese and allow to set over low flame. In another pan, cook beans until heated through and season with salt and pepper.
4. Place frittata under broiler until it is fully set and brown at the edges. Serve frittata in wedges topped with black beans.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Salmon For Valentine


Valentine's is the Day of Hearts, so make sure that you give your heart the nourishment it needs with this succulent take on salmon by Giada De Laurentiis. Hearty as a main course, light enough to give you room for dessert, this salmon dish is also rich in omega-3, a fatty acid essential for a healthy heart.

Salmon in Lemon and Caper Sauce

4 salmon fillets
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp minced fresh rosemary leaves
2 lemons, sliced into 4 rounds each
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup white wine
4 tsps capers
4 pcs of aluminum foil

Mix olive oil, salt, pepper, and rosemary. Brush the mixture all over the salmon fillets before placing each fillet on a piece of foil. Top each fillet with lemon juice, wine, capers, and lemon slices. Fold the foil packet over the salmon and seal tightly. Grill packets over a preheated grill pan for 10 minutes. Serve wrapped in foil packets.

Try: Instead of foil, use parchment paper and bake the packets for Salmon en Papillote.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Panzanella Fit For Spring


Spring is just around the corner. No doubt, you are preparing to enjoy the bounties of spring with al fresco dinners and lunches. Include this bright panzanella from blogger Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks in your repertoire for a fresh take on spring salad.

Panzanella

1 lb loaf of day-old, whole wheat bread cut into 1-inch cubes
4 garlic cloves, chopped
1 shallot, chopped
1 tbsp fresh thyme
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into segments
2 cups fresh or frozen peas
4 handfuls of spinach
1/4 cup small basil leaves
salt to taste

Toss the bread with shallot, thyme, salt, garlic, and olive oil until coated then spread it evenly on a baking sheet. Toast the bread until golden.

Heat a dash of olive oil and a splash of water in a pan with a bit of salt. When hot, stir in the asparagus and cook covered for 20 seconds before adding the peas and spinach. Cook until the spinach just starts to wilt.

Mix the toasted bread cubes and the vegetables with all the pan juices in a large bowl. Add the basil leaves and toss again.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, February 1, 2010

Chicken Barbecue For Your Indoor Grill


Suffering from hypertension and missing your usual chicken dish? Chicken breasts are great sources of lean protein and are incredibly cheap. Satisfy your craving for chicken with this versatile substitute. Try this chicken barbecue recipe adapted from Food Network Magazine for chicken breasts that are flavorful, healthy, and perfect for indoor grilling.

Tangy Barbecued Chicken Breasts

4 skinless chicken breast halves
salt and pepper for seasoning

Marinade:
1 cup ketchup
3 tbsp. molasses
3 tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 tbsp. dried mustard
1 tbsp. soy sauce
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 cup water
salt and pepper to taste

1. Simmer together ingredients for marinade until thick.
2. Preheat grill and season chicken breasts with salt and pepper. Grill over direct heat until golden.
3. After grilling, toss chicken breasts with marinade until coated.
4. Grill chicken again and baste occasionally. Take off the heat when glazed.
5. Serve with extra marinade on the side as sauce.

Tip: Slice and skewer grilled chicken pieces on bamboo sticks with mushrooms, peppers, and onions before grilling for the second time for a fun twist. Serve as a main course or appetizer.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Toast and Eggs for Breakfast


Considering calorie recommendations, nutritionists and dietitians alike suggest eating a 400-calorie breakfast to stay on the healthy side. This does not mean subsisting on gruel and tasteless mush. For breakfast, it is recommended that you eat a serving of complex carbs, whole grains, vegetables, and lean protein. This means that your buttered muffin and bacon and eggs combo is out.

Try this breakfast by the Food Network Test Kitchen for a delicious start to your day - at only 391 calories. Not bad for a meal that's rich in iron, protein, and vitamins B and C.

Healthy Eggs and Toast Plate

2 slices whole wheat bread, toasted
1 whole egg
2 egg whites
1/2 cup mozzarella
salt and pepper to taste
spinach and tomatoes - as much as you like
cooking spray

1. Beat egg and egg whites until frothy. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Grease non-stick pan lightly with cooking spray. Cook eggs until set to your liking.
3. Fill half of the cooked eggs with spinach, tomatoes, and cheese. Fold the other half over the filling.
4. Serve warm with toasted whole wheat bread.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, January 25, 2010

A Buckwheat Pancake Breakfast


Breakfast is the most important meal of your day. But how encouraging can eating breakfast be if all you're having is dry toast? It's also not that healthy if you eat a greasy plate of bacon and eggs. For a healthy and delicious start to your day, try Ellie Krieger's Buckwheat Pancakes with Blueberries. Rich in fiber, antioxidants, protein, and vitamin C, it can fill you up and provide you energy that can last 'til lunchtime.

Buckwheat Pancakes with Blueberries

Batter:
3/4 cup buckwheat flour
3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
3/4 cup nonfat milk
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 cup blueberries

Topping:
1/2 cup real maple syrup
1 cup blueberries

1. Mix ingredients for the batter except berries until just combined. Fold in berries gently.
2. Preheat a large non-stick griddle then ladle 1/4 cup of batter. Flip pancake when the top is bubbly and bottom is golden brown. Cook the other side until golden brown.
3. Top pancakes with more blueberries and maple syrup.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Monday, January 18, 2010

How to Bake Your Cake AND Eat It Too


Try Martha Stewart's Walnut and Orange Cake for a dessert that's loaded with Vitamins B and C as well as omega-3 fatty acids.

Walnut and Orange Cake

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour*
1/2 cup olive oil*
1 tbsp. grated orange zest**
1 cup finely ground walnuts
2 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup fresh orange juice
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 cup low-fat Greek yogurt
2 tbsp. confectioners' sugar**

*extra for pan
**extra for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare cake pan by brushing with oil and lining with parchment paper. Oil and flour prepared pan again.

2. Whisk orange zest, baking powder, salt, walnuts, and flour. Mix in eggs, orange juice, oil, and brown sugar by making a well in the center. Do not overmix.

3. Pour cake batter into your cake pan and bake for 40-45 minutes. Cool cake in pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a rack to cool completely.

4. Combine yogurt and confectioners' sugar to serve with cake. Dust cake with extra confectioners' before serving. Garnish with orange zest.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Fry Your Chicken and Eat It Too


How many times have you fried chicken without actually eating it due to health concerns?
Ellie Krieger, nutritionist and host of Food Network's Healthy Appetite, has a recipe for oven-fried chicken that's healthy and tasty.


Ellie Krieger's Oven-Fried Chicken

Breading
20 whole-grain salted crackers, finely pulsed
2 1/2 cups corn cereal flakes, finely pulsed
2 tbsps. sesame seeds
3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

Marinade
2 egg whites
1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. salt

8 chicken pieces (4 each of skinless thighs and breasts) rinsed and patted dry
Olive oil cooking spray

1. Lightly grease baking sheet with cooking spray then pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F.
2. Combine ingredients for breading mixture. Set aside.
3. Mix ingredients for marinade, add chicken pieces, and coat completely.
4. Dip each chicken piece into the breading mix. Press breading mix onto the chicken pieces for even coating.
5. Place chicken pieces onto your baking sheet and lightly spray with olive oil. Bake for 45 minutes or until juices run clear. Serve warm.

Author: Kristine Gonzaga

Friday, January 8, 2010

Beef and pasta bake


This all-in-one dish is a clever time-saver as well as being a tasty meal everyone will enjoy.

Step 1 Preheat oven to 200°C. Cook pasta following packet directions. Drain. Return to pan and set aside.

Step 2 Brush a large, non-stick frying pan with oil and heat over a medium heat. Add onion. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes, or until soft. Add mince and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until browned. Add pasta sauce and stir until well combined. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat.

Step 3 Stir meat sauce into pasta. Pour into a large, shallow, ovenproof dish. Sprinkle parmesan on top. Bake for 15 minutes, or until cheese is golden. Serve with a salad.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Grilled Chicken with Tomato-Avocado Salsa

Ingredients
For the salsa
4 ripe plum tomatoes, chopped or 12 cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeño chili pepper, seeded and diced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 avocado
For the chicken
1/2 cup non-fat, plain yogurt
1/2 small red onion
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, about 4 to 6 ounces each
salt to taste
freshly ground black pepper
Cooking Instructions
For the salsa:
1. In a small bowl, combine the tomatoes, red onion, pepper and cilantro.

2. Chop the avocado and sprinkle it with 2 tablespoons of lime juice to keep it from browning. Add the avocado and remaining lime juice to the bowl and toss to combine.
(This can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 day.)

For the chicken:
1. In a small food processor, puree the yogurt, red onion, lime juice and cilantro to make a yogurt marinade.

2. Transfer the marinade to a shallow bowl or a plastic bag. Add the chicken and coat well with the marinade. Refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 8 hours.

3. Preheat the grill to medium-high.

4. Remove the chicken from the marinade, discard the remaining marinade and season the chicken with salt and pepper. Grill the chicken on both sides until it is cooked through, about 6 minutes per side.

5. Serve the chicken with tomato-avocado salsa.

Serving Size: 1 chicken breast with salsa

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