Saturday, February 27, 2010

Hmmm, Homemade Hearty Hummus

I've never made hummus before but I read in my Hadassah cookbook that Hummus is a traditional food made for Purim (and here I thought Purim was about Esther and Hamentaschen!), and with Purim this weekend, I decided to give it a shot.

Much to my surprise, it is probably one of the most easy & simple to make things around. You'll be done making it within 10 minutes, I promise you that!

Happy Purim!

1 can of 16 ounce chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed, liquid reserved.
3 garlic cloves
2-3 tbsp of flat parsley
1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil, separated
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 tbsp sesame tahini
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

What you need:
A food processor, pita chips or another crunchy cracker, grape tomatoes, and sliced carrots.

How you do it:

In the food processor, place the garlic, salt, pepper, 1/4 cup of olive oil, and garbanzo beans. Process til smooth. Add the sesame tahini, lemon juice, remainder of olive oil, and process until smooth. If you need to, use a little of the liquid reserve from the beans to thin the hummus. Next, place the parsley in the food processor, and blend.

And...your done. See, that was easy. And it's good, too!

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1/8 cup

Amount per Serving

Calories 97
Calories from Fat 73.2

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 8.13g
Saturated Fat 1.19g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 75.77mg
Total Carbohydrate 5.39g
Dietary Fiber 1.27g
Sugars 0g
Protein 1.61g

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Chicken Parmesan with Eggplant...Quinoa ?

A go to meal in our household is Chicken Parm (or, Chicken Pahm if your from our area). We usually serve it with a side of Barilla plus pasta, maybe a tomato basil or spicy red pepper sauce, usually some light mozz on the chicken, pan fried. Tasty as it may, it can get boring. We also haven't been tying in as many veggies as we should when we make this dinner. So the other night, I decided to change it up.

Recently, I've discovered a really good for your grain, Quinoa. This is pronounced Keen-wah. It's fun to say, isn't it? Well, a normal great substitute for rice, I figured, why not try pasta. And like a grain I cook often, cous cous, which I usually add various vegetables in the mix, I decided, I am going to toss some veggies in this mix, also.

So, here's a Panko Crusted Chicken Mozzarella Parmesan with an Eggplant Quinoa Lasagna (There's a mouthful!).
Mangia my little Bubbellah's!

Whatcha need for the Chicken Pahm?
  1. 4 thin sliced chicken breasts, about 4 ounces each
  2. 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
  3. 1 serving egg beaters
  4. 1/4 cup (maybe less) all purpose flour, and yes, you can use whole wheat, instead
  5. 2 tbsp grated parmesan/romano blend by kraft (not the fresh kind)
  6. 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  7. 1/4 tsp kosher salt
  8. 1/8 tsp ground black pepper
  9. eye ball about a 1/2 tsp of dried oregano, basil and parsley- If you have fresh, use about a tsp of each.
  10. 1/2 cup part skim shredded mozzarella cheese
  11. 1/2 cup tomato and basil sauce (such as Classico or Bertolli brands)
  12. 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
Line your flour/egg/panko like this.
Step 1- season chicken w/ salt and pepper. Step 2- season the panko with the garlic powder, oregano, basil, and parsley and 1 tbsp of parmesan cheese.

Dredge chicken in flour, then egg beater, then panko mix. They should like the ones above.
Heat 1/2 tbsp of olive oil in pan. Place chickens on top.
Cook about 5-7 minutes. Before you flip the bird(s), lay on the other 1/2 tbsp of oil.

Now, add the sauce, about 1/8 cup on each chicken breast. Then add the remaining 1 tbsp of parmesan cheese (sprinkle it amongst friends), and 1/8 cup of mozzarella on each chicken piece. Throw the cover on top of the pan for 2-3 minutes and voila, chicken parm. Serves 4.

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 chicken breast

Amount per Serving

Calories 289
Calories from Fat 87.9

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 9.77g
Saturated Fat 3.68g
Cholesterol 87.15mg
Sodium 574.05mg
Total Carbohydrate 15.75g
Dietary Fiber 1g
Sugars 3.25g
Protein 34.5g
Now, for the Quin-what?
  1. 1 cup of organic Quinoa
  2. 1 1/4 cups of water
  3. 3 cups of peeled, diced eggplant
  4. 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  5. 1 tomato, chopped
  6. 2 garlic cloves, sliced
  7. 4 tbsp part skim ricotta cheese
  8. 1.5 tbsp parmesan/romano grated cheese
  9. 1/4 cup part skim shredded mozzarella cheese
  10. 1 cup tomato and basil pasta sauce
Cook the Quinoa according to package directions (typically, boil, add, cover for 12 minutes... ensure it doesn't burn, you know).
Mix all the cheeses together.
Take 13x9 pan, layer on a coat of cooking spray.
Spoon 1/2 of the quinoa in the pan- make a thin layer with it.
Sprinkle in 1/2 of your eggplant pieces, then your onions, tomato, and garlic slices.
Drizzle 1/2 cup of the pasta sauce on top of veggies.
Then, take about 1/3 of the cheese mix, and dollop it on top of the sauce in a sporadic way.
Layer the rest of the quinoa on top of the cheese.
Repeat process.

Bake in 400 degree oven for about 40-45 minutes. Serves 6 (great left overs!)

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 serving

Amount per Serving

Calories 221
Calories from Fat 49.1

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 5.45g
Saturated Fat 1.63g
Cholesterol 7.5mg
Sodium 254.5mg
Total Carbohydrate 36.54g
Dietary Fiber 6.59g
Sugars 10.98g
Protein 9.63g

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Healthy Banana Bread, Take 2

Well well well. Who knew my banana bread recipe here could get healthier?

With a couple of small changes, this recipe cuts out the refined sugar and adds a little bit more protein.

  1. 1 1/2 cups sifted whole wheat flour
  2. 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  3. 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  4. 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  5. 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  6. 3 medium, ripe (turning brown) bananas, mashed
  7. 1/4 cup egg substitute
  8. 1/4 cup + 1/8 cup agave nectar
  9. 1/4 cup all natural unsweetened applesauce
  10. 1 tbsp all natural smooth peanut butter
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease an 8x4x2 loaf pan.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, combine the first 5 ingredients (flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon).
  • In a smaller mixing bowl, combine the next four ingredients (bananas, egg, agave nectar, applesauce, peanut butter).
  • In the dry ingredient bowl, make a well in the center.
  • Pour the wet ingredients all at once into the well.
  • Combine ingredients til dry is now wet like a batter. The batter will be lumpy. Do not over mix.
  • Place batter in greased loaf pan.
  • Place in oven for 50-55 minutes, until a toothpick (or slender picking type object of your choice) comes out clean when you insert it in the center of the bread.
  • Let cool completely on wire rack (pop it out of pan)
  • Wrap it in plastic wrap for about 24 hours (if you can wait that long) before cutting into it.
  • Serves 8 slices

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 slices

Amount per Serving

Calories 150
Calories from Fat 12.4

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 1.38g
Saturated Fat 0.13g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 184.72mg
Total Carbohydrate 32.88g
Dietary Fiber 5.03g
Sugars 12.56g
Protein 4.63g

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Double Love Chocolate Chip Cookies!!!!

May have to push that glass of wine out of the way and pour a tall glass of milk for these delectable treats.

Growing up, on wintry days or nights, it would not be uncommon for baked goods to be in the oven...I mean, my mother baked, my sister baked, I baked...and my dad was happy. Last night, it was snowy. It was cold. It reminded me that on a night like that, I should bake cookies.

I love a big, tasty, chocolate cookie. You know, the types of cookies that are often found at stores and restaurants and have about 400 calories in them? Thing is...I don't like the 400 calorie thing. I mean, who would, really? But the cookie! I love the cookie!

The chocolate bites of amore are about 200 calories each, and worth the splurge.

The stuff that's in them:
  1. 2 1/2 cup Toll House Semi-sweet Chocolate Chips
  2. 1 1/2 cup Sugar, Granulated
  3. 1 cup I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Light (the type that is in the tub is great because it's soft)
  4. 1 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract
  5. 1 tsp Pure Almond Extract
  6. 1/2 cup Egg Beaters
  7. 1 cup 100% Organic Whole Wheat Flour
  8. 1 cup All-purpose Flour
  9. 1/3 cup Cocoa Powder, Natural Unsweetened
  10. 1 tsp Baking Soda
  11. 1/4 tsp Kosher Salt

How you make 'em:

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Melt 1/2 c chocolate chips (about 30-45 seconds in the microwave). Stir; set aside

In your mixer, beat the sugar, butter, and extracts til creamy.

Beat in egg beaters until fluffy.

Mix in melted (but cooled) chocolate.

In a small bowl, combine together the flours, cocoa powder, baking soda, salt.

Mix the flour mixture with the fluffly sugar goodness. Add the remaining chocolate chips.

Place 2" balls on a "Pam'd" cookie sheet. Bake for 9-11 minutes; cool on baking rack.

The facts, approximately:

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 cookie

Amount per Serving

Calories 190
Calories from Fat 73.4

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 8.16g
Saturated Fat 3.87g
Cholesterol 0mg
Sodium 70.33mg
Total Carbohydrate 28.07g
Dietary Fiber 1.02g
Sugars 20.43g
Protein 1.47g

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Winter Salad

Salad can be boring.

Yeah, I said it. Do you disagree?

This salad that I adapted from Williams Sonoma Bride and Groom Cookbook is NOT boring. It's delicious. I made the "full fat" version for New Years Eve (hey, I indulge occasionally!), but this week for lunches for my husband and I, I opted to make a lower fat, more figure friendly version. You know, the type of recipe that will help you look the way you want to look on the beach...let's say in a Aruba? Oh wait...that's what I was thinking. I digress....

This salad includes sliced Belgian Endives, Spring mix lettuce (typically includes Radicchio, Baby Spinach, other Baby greens, and Arugala), pecans, fuji apples, and a light Roquefort dressing that pairs quite nicely with the mixed greens. But, I will say...Roqeufort can be a "smelly" cheese. If your opposed to this, you could go with a milder blue, like Danish Blue.

The what's in it:
  1. 2 cups of spring mix salad blend
  2. 2 Belgian Endives, outer, wilted leaves removed; sliced.
  3. 1/4 cup of shelled pecans
  4. 2 fuji apples, chopped into bite sized pieces.
  5. 2 ounces Roquefort cheese
  6. 6 tbsp fat free half and half
  7. 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
  8. Kosher salt and pepper

The how to:
In a small bowl, whisk the half and half and cider vinegar together.
Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste
Crumble in the cheese. Whisk a little bit.

In a salad bowl, combine the first four ingredients (endive, greens, pecans, apples).

When ready to serve, drizzle the dressing over the salad mix.

This will serve 4 appetizer portions, or 2 for lunch.

The facts:

Nutrition Facts

Serving Size: 1 salad

Amount per Serving

Calories 173
Calories from Fat 88

% Daily Value *

Total Fat 9.8g
Saturated Fat 3.3g
Cholesterol 15.0mg
Total Carbohydrate 16.5g
Dietary Fiber 3.4g
Sugars 10.1g
Protein 5.4g