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Posts Tagged ‘Recipes’

I’m baaa-aaack!

It’s been quite a while, I’m sorry. This summer just got away from us – and we didn’t even go to the beach this year! We have been so incredibly busy lately, and one of the downsides of being busy is a) I don’t cook and b) We don’t eat as healthy. I decided I’d had it, and started flipping through the latest issue of Food Network Magazine. It’s hard when it only comes every other month, but I read in this issue that it will be coming more often, yay!

The October issue (Vol. 2, Number 4) has more than 120 recipes in it, so I’m sure it will give me lots of ideas. One feature was “50 Easy Soups.” As the weather starts to cool down, I naturally crave something warm. Last week I tried Escarole & White Bean Soup. It was super easy. I’ve never tried escarole before, but it cooks similar to spinach and has a a slightly bitter flavor. The recipe suggested adding sausage, but I tried turkey kielbasa for a healthier kick. I was cooking late, so by the time it was ready I was too exhausted (and hungry) to get the Nikon to snap a photo. You’ll have to be content with this one from my phone instead!

  • 3 garlic cloves, choppe
  • Dash red pepper flakes
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 head escarole, chopped
  • Parmesan cheese
  • 1 can white beans
  • 1 package turkey kielbasa, diced

Cook garlic cloves, red pepper flakes, and turkey kielbasa in olive oil. Add chicken broth, escarole, and a parmesan rind (I didn’t have one); simmer 15 minutes. Add white beans, parmesan, and salt (be careful, only use a small amount or it will be too salty). Makes 4 servings.

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Nilla wafers

Admit it, just like me you still sometimes crave dipping Nilla Wafers in milk till they are a little soggy, no? We all still have a little preschool left in us. But I found another, slightly more “grown up” dessert using a 4-year-old’s favorite snack – and it only uses three ingredients.

This one I found on the back of a Reduced Fat Nilla Wafers box. I tried it with strawberry banana yogurt, but it would be great with any flavor. My next idea is to sprinkle in a few chocolate chips and maybe a few chopped walnuts or almonds. Yum!

Nilla Wafer Dessert (one serving)

  • 2 Reduced Fat Nilla Wafers
  • 2 tbs. lowfat yogurt, any flavor
  • 2 tbs. Cool Whip, thawed
  • 1 muffin cup

Stir Cool Whip and yogurt together until smooth. Place one wafer at the bottom of the muffin cup and cover with the Cool Whip/yogurt mixture. Place the other wafer on top, and freeze approximately 1 hour until hardened. (I like to make them six at a time so I can put them in a muffin tin to keep them together in the freezer.)

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I blogged a few weeks ago about making Asparagus, Goat Cheese, and Lemon Pasta from Smitten Kitchen, and I finally did it tonight. I can’t believe I waited so long!

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It literally took 12 minutes to make, and it tasted like it had taken much longer.  Deb suggests adding some lemon juice if you feel it needs a little kick – I added the juice of half a lemon and it was just right. I also didn’t have any tarragon so I used herbes de provence, and it tasted just the same.

While I had the camera out, I wanted to take a picture of the awesome trivet my dad made me for Christmas this year.

He’s an amazing woodworker! A few years ago, he made me a beautiful handmade rolling pin, too. I’ll have to post a picture of that later.

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One of last week’s Hungry Girl emails was called “I Love Rocky Road!” and described how to make low-cal rocky road fudge. I was skeptical at first, but decided to give it a whirl, and made a double batch for two different birthday parties. The interesting thing about this fudge is you only get a hint of the pumpkin – just enough to say “What is that?” but not enough to say “Yuck, it isn’t Thanksgiving, so don’t serve me pumpkin pie.” And this is fudge you can feel better about eating, considering the fact that regular rocky road fudge can net you 226 calories and 10 grams of fat per piece.

Hungry Girl’s Rocky Road Fudge

  • 1 box Betty Crocker Fudge Brownies Mix (18.3-oz. family size)
  • 2 cups canned pure pumpkin (if you’re making a double batch, like I did, one big can can get you almost 4 cups – I just used a little less than 2 cups per batch)
  • 2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds, lightly crushed
  • 2 tbs. Hershey’s Lite Chocolate Syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Combine brownie mix, pumpkin, and chocolate syrup in a large bowl, and stir until completely mixed and smooth. (Batter will be thick.) Spray a midsized baking pan (8×8 works best) with nonstick spray and pour in the mixture. Smooth the top of the batter with a spatula.

Bake in the oven for 25 minutes. Remove pan from the oven, and evenly distribute mini marshmallows across the top of the batter. Sprinkle almonds over the marshmallows. Using a spatula (or your fingers!) press down on the marshmallow-nut layer to help it adhere to the batter.

Return pan to the oven, and bake for 10 additional minutes. Remove pan from the oven, and let cool slightly. Refrigerate, uncovered, for several hours, until completely chilled. (Important – do NOT cover pan while initially chilling it in the fridge.) Cut into 36 squares and serve.

Per serving:  Calories – 73,  Fat – 1g, Protein – 1g

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Food Network Magazine does it again! This recipe was delicious and took no time at all. I especially liked using refrigerated pizza dough for the crust instead of pie crust – it gave the dish a heartier flavor but didn’t make it too heavy. I’d recommend serving this with some roasted tomatoes sprinkled with blue cheese, olive oil, garlic salt, and pepper as a side.

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From Food Network Magazine, Volume 2, Issue 2 (June/July 2009)

  • 3 tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 13.8-oz. tube refrigerated pizza crust dough
  • 1/4 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream (I used fat-free half-and-half)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2-3 bunches scallions
  • 3 tbs. chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tbs. chopped fresh dill or tarragon
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 5 oz. deli-sliced ham, cut into 1/2-in. pieces (I used smoked turkey, but this would be delicious with any flavor lunchmeat)

Place a baking sheet on the top rack of the oven; preheat to 425 degrees. Grease a 9-in. fluted tart pan (I used a pie pan instead) with 1 tbs. butter. Line the pan with the pizza dough, carefully pressing it against the sides; trim excess dough. (I actually just rolled it over the top to make a thicker crust.)

Whisk the ricotta, cream, and egg in a medium bowl. Mince enough green scallion tops to make 2 tbs.; add to the ricotta mixutre along with the parlsey and dill. Season with pepper. Slice the remaining scallions into 1/2- to 3/4-in. pieces.

Heat the remaining 2 tbs. butter in a large skillet over high heat. Add the sliced scallions and 2 tbs. water; cook until the scallions are tender and start to sizzle, about 3 min. Remove from the heat and add the ham. Spread all but a few tbs. of the scallion mixture on the prepared crust. Pour in the ricotta mixture, then scatter the remaining scallion mixture on top.

Bake the tart on the preheated baking sheet (I actually forgot to do this part, so know that it will turn out okay if you do too!) for 20 minutes, or until the crust is golden and the filling is set. Rest in the pan for 5 minutes, then remove and slice.

Per serving: Calories – 460, Fat – 22g, Fiber – 1.5g, Protein – 18g

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One of my new favorite blogs to follow is Smitten Kitchen, cleverly subtitled “Fearless cooking from a tiny kitchen in New York City.” Husband and wife team Deb & Alex combine forces to create posts that are fun to read and have amazing photographs. They sound like they’d be fun people to hang around.

I saw a new post on Smitten Kitchen’s Twitter feed tonight for asparagus, goat cheese, and lemon pasta. Three of my favorite ingredients! I love how easy and delicious it sounds. Check out the recipe here.

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One of my favorite features of the Food Network Magazine is the Weeknight Cooking section, which compiles 16 recipes that can easily be made after getting home from a long day at work. Tonight I tried Udon With Tofu and Asian Greens – or, rather, my take on it! I didn’t have any udon noodles or Asian greens, so I used regular spaghetti and a bag of leftover kale. I also didn’t have roasted peanut oil, so I threw in a little sushi vinegar and left out the sugar! Presto, done. I was too hungry to take a picture, so you’ll have to live with a mental one 🙂

  • 1 8-oz. package udon noodles
  • 4 tbs. roasted peanut oil, or 3 tbs. sesame oil mixed with 1 tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1 12-oz. package firm tofu, cut into 12 pieces
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 11-oz. package Asian cooking greens or baby spinach
  • 1 bunch scallions, thinly sliced diagonally
  • Large pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 3 tbs. soy sauce
  • Pinch of sugar

Cook the udon noodles as the label directs. (Don’t overcook or they will get mushy.) Drain, reserving about 1/3 cup of the cooking water.

Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Pat the tofu dry and season all over with salt and pepper. Add the tofu to the skillet and sear until golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Set aside and keep warm.

Add 1 tablespoon oil and the greens to the skillet. Cook, tossing, until just wilted. Add the scallions, red pepper flakes, the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, the soy sauce, and sugar. Add the reserved cooking water; heat to create a broth. Divide the noodles and greens among 4 bowls and top with the tofu. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: Calories – 430, Fat – 19g, Fiber – 8g, Protein – 18g

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