Thursday, April 24, 2014

Curried Chicken Salad With Cashews and Grapes


Another great recipe adapted from the cookbook " Eating in Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth. This is perfect for a luncheon or light supper.

Serves 8 ( 2/3 c. = 5 points +)


  • 2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast, cooked and chopped
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/2 c. low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 c. low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 T. grated lemon zest
  • 1 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tsp. curry powder
  • 1/2 c. chopped celery
  • 1 c. red grapes, quartered
  • 1/4 c. dried cranberries
  • 1/3 c. chopped cashews
  • Romaine lettuce


For dressing, whisk together yogurt, mayo, salt, pepper, lemon zest, lemon juice, and curry powder. 
Place cooked, chopped chicken in a large bowl. Stir in dressing to coat. Add celery, grapes, cranberries and cashews. Stir gently to mix. Serve on top of Romaine lettuce leaves. 

Lemon Berry Trifle



A couple of weeks ago, I tried a recipe for lemon pound cake. It was easy to make and tasted awesome. I decided to make it again, this time using it in a trifle. A trifle is a traditional English dessert made with layers of cake, some kind of custard or whipped cream, berries, etc. Since it is spring, I thought lemon would be a nice flavor to try.

Serves 16 ( about 2/3 c. = 5 points +)


  • 1 lemon pound cake ( recipe here)
  • 2 small boxes lemon, sugar-free, fat-free instant pudding
  • 3 c. skim milk
  • 1 ( 8 oz) container Cool Whip Free
  • 4 c. berries of your choice. I used raspberries and blackberries.


After your lemon pound cake is made and cooled, cut into cubes.

For filling, whisk together pudding and milk until thickened. Let stand 2 minutes to thicken more. Fold in Cool Whip.

Place about 1/2 c. filling in the bottom of your trifle dish. Top with 1/3 of cake, 1/3 and remaining filling and 1/3 of berries. Repeat twice. Cover and refrigerate until serving.




Friday, April 18, 2014

Orecchiette with Snap Peas and Tuna


Orecchiette means "little ears" in Italian. These noodles are not only cute, they hold sauce very nicely.
Serve this pasta warm or cold.

serves 8 ( about 1-1/4 c. = 7 points +)


  • 1 lb. orecchiette noodles
  • 1/2 lb. sugar snap peas, cut in half
  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1 T. lemon juice
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 can ( 4 oz) tuna packed in water, drained
  • salt and pepper to taste


Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta according to package directions. Steam the pas for 2 minute or just until the color begins to brighten. If you have a steamer basket that is larger than the diameter of your pasta cooking pot, you can set it directly on top and utilize the steam from the boiling water below.

While pasta is cooking, whisk together lemon zest, juice, olive oil, Parmesan, salt and pepper. Stir in tuna and peas. Drain pasta and stir into tuna mixture.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Chocolate Chunk Pumpkin Muffins





With no added fat and warm chocolate oozing from these muffins, what's not to love?

Makes 18 muffins (4 points +)


  • 2 medium bananas ( ripe)
  • 1 c. canned pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 c. sugar
  • 1/2 c. sugar-free maple syrup
  • 1/4 c. flax seed, ground
  • 1/4 c. wheat germ
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 c. semisweet chocolate chunks
  • 1/4 c. shelled raw pumpkin seeds ( Pepitas)


Preheat oven to 375 and spray muffin tins with nonstick spray.

In a large bowl, mix together the bananas, pumpkin, eggs, sugar and syrup..
In another bowl, combine flour, flaxseed, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda, salt and spices.

Gently stir dry ingredients into wet, being careful not to overmix. Stir in chocolate chunks. Fill muffin tins 3/4 full. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds. 

Bake 18-20 minutes or until done. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

adapted from the cookbook: " Eating in Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth

Nutty Broccoli



Another quick and fresh-tasting side dish. To toast the nuts, place on a baking sheet or small baking pan like a loaf pan. Cook in the oven at 350 degrees for 5-10 minutes or until fragrant. Let cool.

Serves 4 ( 2 points +)

  • 1 large head broccoli ( about 4 c.)
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. chopped pecans, toasted
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice


Heat a large nonstick skillet. Add oil and swirl to coat. Add broccoli and cook until crisp-tender. Toss broccoli with salt and pepper, red pepper flakes, lemon juice, and pecans.

Nectarine Salad With Ricotta and Pecans




This is a wonderfully quick and easy spring or summer salad that is loaded with flavor!

serves 4 ( 4 points +)
Salad:

  • 6 c. mixed greens
  • 1 nectarine, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 c. low-fat ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 c. chopped pecans, toasted


Dressing:

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. flavored vinegar ( I used a peach white balsamic)
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste


Place 1-1/2 c. mixed greens on each plate. Top with nectarine, 2 T. ricotta and 1 T. pecans.

For dressing, whisk all ingredients together until well blended. Drizzle over salads.

Crispy Cauliflower Fritters



This recipe was adapted from "Cooking Light". I would describe it as a combo between a fritter and a latke. We all enjoyed them. At 2 points each, they make for a nice satisfying side dish.

Makes 8 fritters ( 2 points + each )


  • 1 ( 10 oz.) package frozen cauliflower florets
  • 1/2 c. chopped onion
  • 2 T. white whole wheat flour
  • 2 tsp. crushed garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. grated lemon rind
  • 3/4 c. shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
  • 1/2 c. shredded reduced-fat cheddar
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1/4 c. plain low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 T. minced green onions
  • 2 T. low-fat mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice


Boil cauliflower until tender; drain, place in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher.
Stir in onion, flour, garlic, salt and pepper to taste, rind, potatoes, cheese and eggs. 

Form into 8 patties. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add oil. Cook patties 4 minutes on each side or until golden brown.

Combine yogurt and remaining ingredients. Season with salt to taste. Serve with fritters.



Pork Loin Chops with Strawberry Red Wine Sauce



serves 4 ( 6 points +)


  • 1/2 c. diced onion
  • 4 tsp. crushed garlic, divided
  • 1/3 c. red wine
  • 2 T. strawberry jam
  • 1/4 c. red wine vinegar
  • 1 T. grated lemon rind
  • 4 ( 4 oz) boneless pork loin chops
  • salt and pepper to taste


Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Coat with nonstick spray. Add onion and 1 tsp. garlic. Cook until onion is tender. Add wine; cook until liquid almost evaporates. Add jam; cook 1 minute. Add vinegar and cook until reduced to about 1/2 c. 

Coat a large nonstick skillet with spray. Combien 1 T. garlic and 1 T. lemon rind. Press over both sides of pork chops. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add pork to pan; cook 3 minutes per side or until done. Remove from pan. Let stand 5 minutes. Serve with strawberry sauce.

Monday, April 7, 2014

Peanut Butter Chicken Salad



A nice light luncheon or dinner entree, the ingredients for this salad can be prepped ahead of time and put together right before serving.

serves 8 ( 1 c. chicken mixture on top of a bed of spinach = 5 points +)


  • 1-1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into thin sticks
  • 1 large English cucumber, cut into thin sticks
  • 1 bunch green onions, sliced thinly
  • 1 can ( 15 oz) bean sprouts, drained
  • 1/4 c. reduced-fat natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 c. fat-free chicken broth
  • 4 tsp. soy sauce
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • baby spinach


Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Season chicken with salt and pepper and add to the pan. Cook until chicken is no longer pink.
Place carrots, cucumber, onions and bean sprouts in a large bowl.

In a small bowl, whisk together the peanut butter, chicken broth and soy sauce. Slowly whisk in olive oil. Season with pepper.

Pour the peanut sauce over the vegetables. Add cooked chicken and toss to coat.

Place a handful of spinach on top of each plate and top with 1 c. chicken mixture. Serve immediately.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Lemon Pound Cake


What a delightful spring-time dessert this was! This is fairly easy to make and is very versatile. Serve it with berries or ice-cream, use left-overs for toast or French toast. This is one recipe you will want to make again and again!

serves 12 ( 5 points +)


  • 6 T. butter
  • 1-1/2 c. flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 c. fat-free sour cream
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 c. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 c. sugar


Preheat oven to 325 and spray a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan with nonstick spray.

Combine the flour, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl; set aside.

Whisk the eggs, sour cream, lemon zest, and lemon juice in another bowl and set aside.

Place the butter in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until creamy. Add sugar in two additions beating until blended after each. Add the sour cream mixture and mix. Add half of the flour mixture and mix again. Stir in remaining flour mixture by hand.

Transfer dough to loaf pan. Bake 45-60 minutes or until lightly golden and springs back when touched.
Cool completely in pan.

adapted from the cookbook: "Eating in Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth


Friday, April 4, 2014

Barley Risotto with Butternut Squash and Sausage


This dish is a little bit of work, but oh . so . satisfying! My little granddaughter, who is 20 months old, ate 3 bowls of this!
Risotto is a traditional Italian dish using Arborio rice, but I decided to use barley since I had it on hand. The flavor is nutty and hearty. 

serves 8 ( 1 c. = 7 points +)


  • 4c. fat-free chicken broth
  • 1/4 c. red wine
  • 1/2 tsp. tumeric
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 c. diced onion
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1-3/4 c. uncooked barley
  • 3 hot turkey Italian sausage links, casings removed
  • 2 lbs. butternut squash, peeled and diced into 1/2 inch pieces
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 c. Parmesan cheese, grated


In a medium saucepan, combine 3-1/2 c. wine and tumeric. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to keep warm.

Heat a large saucepot over medium-high heat. Add oil, onion and garlic. Cook until onion is translucent. Stir in barley. Cook for 3 minutes.

Using a 1/2 c. ladle, add broth mixture to barley, stirring occasionally. Allow each addition to be absorbed before adding more broth` 5-7 minutes.

In a large saute pan coated with nonstick spray, add sausage and break apart with a spoon. Cook until no longer pink. Remove sausage and place on a plate lined with paper towel to drain.

Add squash to saute pan. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally 7-10 minutes. Ad remaining 1/2 c. broth to pan. Cover and simmer 10-15 minutes or until squash is tender. 

Add squash and sausage to pan and heat through. Stir in Parmesan cheese before serving.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Crab Cakes


serves 4 ( 1 crab cake with yogurt sauce = 4 points +)

Crab Cakes:

  • 2 T. thinly sliced green onion
  • 1/2 T. light mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon rind
  • 1tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • black pepper to taste
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/3 c. Panko Japanese bread crumbs
  • 8 oz. lump crab meat, shell pieces removed
  • 1-1/2 T. canola oil


Sauce:

  • 3 T. low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. dried dill


For crab cakes, combine first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir in pankp. Add crab meat; stir to combine. Let stand 10 minutes.

Divide crab mixture into 4 patties.

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Add oil.

Add patties to pan; cook 3-4 minutes per side or until golden. Remove from pan and keep warm.

For sauce, whisk all ingredients together.  Serve sauce over crab patties.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Black Bean, Corn, Green Grape, and Avocado Salad



This salad was amazing! The combination of the sweet and savory was refreshing and light tasting. I served this as a side dish with Chicken Chili Enchiladas. This would be a nice main course for a lunch, too. This recipe comes from the book "Eating in Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth. I have enjoyed every recipe I have tried from this book so far. I hope you like this one too!

serves 6 ( about 1 c. = 4 points +)


  • 1 tsp. grated lime zest
  • 2 T. fresh lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 ( 15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1/3 c. frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1/2 c. green grapes, quartered


In a small bowl, combine the lime zest, juice, salt and cayenne pepper. Add the beans and stir to coat.

In a large bowl. combine remaining ingredients. Add beans and gently toss to combine. Serve at room temperature.

Chicken, Avocado And Walnut Salad



This hearty salad was perfect for a Sunday springtime lunch!

serves 4 ( 11 points +)


Salad:

  • 12 c. Romaine lettuce, torn
  • 2 Avocados, skinned, pitted and sliced
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 T. chopped walnuts


Dressing:

  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. white wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste


Whisk dressing ingredients together in a bowl; set aside.

Heat a nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add oil to the pan. Cook chicken until juices run clear. Let stand 5 minutes, then chop.

Place lettuce and avocado in a large bowl. Toss with dressing.

Place lettuce on each of 4 plates. Top with chicken and sprinkle with walnuts.

Angel Food Cake With Strawberry- Balsamic Sauce and Orange Flavored Ricotta



I came up with this dessert recipe for my dad, who has diabetes. It is only 4 points + and is a lovely springtime dessert. You will have leftover strawberry sauce, which can be reserved for a later use.


serves 8 ( 1 slice of cake with 2 T. strawberry sauce and 2 T. ricotta = 4 points +)

Strawberry Sauce:

  • 1 lb. frozen strawberries, thawed
  • 1/2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 T. Xylitol or another 0 calorie sweetener
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1T. water


Ricotta Topping:

  • 1 c. low-fat ricotta
  • 1 T. Xylitol or another 0 calorie sweetener
  • 1 T. orange zest



  • 1 store bought angel food cake


Place strawberries in a saucepan along with Xylitol and balsamic. Cook until berries are softened. Mash berries. Combine cornstarch with water and add to berry mixture. Cook until thickened. Cool to room temperature.

Using an electric mixer, beat ricotta with Xylitol and orange zest for 3 minutes or until light.

Slice cake, top with berry mixture and ricotta.

Bibimbap


Bibimbap is a traditional Korean dish that combines brown rice, sauteed spinach, a small amount of beef and an assortment of seasoned vegetables. It also is usually topped with a raw egg! I have lightened the traditional recipe and opted for a cooked scrambled egg! I also used some leftover pork tenderloin for this recipe. The dish is served in a bowl, topped with a spicy red sauce.

serves 6 ( 10 points +)


  • 1-1/2 c. uncooked brown Minute Rice
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • 6 c. raw baby spinach
  • 1 c. finely chopped carrot
  • 2 c. sugar snap peas
  • 2 scallions, sliced
  • 3 radishes, sliced
  • 1-1/2 c. cooked, chopped pork tenderloin
  • 6 eggs, beaten


sauce:

  • 1 T. sesame oil
  • 1 T. Sriracha hot chili sauce
  • 1-1/2 tsp. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1-1/2 T. fresh lemon juice


Cook rice according to package directions.

Whisk sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with spray. Add oil. Cook carrots and peas until crisp-tender. Add spinach and salt to taste. Cook until spinach wilts. Remove spinach mixture and keep warm.

Return skillet to stove and spray with nonstick spray. Cook eggs.

Place 1/2 c. rice in each bowl, top with 1/4 c. pork, spinach mixture, scallions, radishes and egg. Drizzle with sauce.

adapted from the cookbook: "Eating in Color"

Spiced Pork Tenderloin with Maple- Chipotle Sauce


serves 8 ( 3 oz. pork with sauce = 4 points +)

Pork:

  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 tsp. allspice
  • 2 ( 1 lb. ) pork tenderloins


Sauce:

  • 1 ( 7 oz) can chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
  • 1/2 c. sugar-free maple syrup
  • 3 T. fat-free chicken broth
  • 1-1/2 T. cider vinegar


To prepare pork, combine first 6 ingredients. Sprinkle over pork; place pork in a ziplock bag and refrigerate at least 3 hours.

Remove pork from bag and place in a roasting pan coated with nonstick spray. Bake at 400 until thermometer reads 145-150 degrees ( 40-60 minutes). Remove pork, cover and let stand 10 minutes before slicing.

For sauce, remove 2 tsp. adobo sauce from can; reserve remaining sauce and chilies for another use.
Add the 2 tsp. sauce, syrup, broth and vinegar to the roasting pan. Place roasting pan over burners on stove. Scrape pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.

Serve sauce with pork.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Avocado Crab Toasts


The fresh taste of the avocado in this recipe made my heart smile! I hope you like it as much as I did!

serves 4 ( 7 points +)

  • 1 ( 8 oz) French baguette
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 T. low-fat Greek yogurt
  • 1/8 tsp. sweet paprika
  • 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest, divided
  • 4-1/4 oz. lump crab meat ( I used canned), drained
  • 3 T. frozen corn, thawed
  • 2 T. finely chopped green pepper
  • 1 T. basil leaves
  • salt and pepper to taste


Cut baguette in half and then slice open so that you have four pieces. Toast in a toaster oven or in a regular oven on 400 degrees until crisp.

Mash avocado with 2 T. lemon juice. Salt to taste. Spread avocado over toasted bread.

Combine yogurt, paprika, cayenne pepper and 1/2 tsp. lemon zest in a bowl; set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine crab, corn, green pepper, basil, salt and pepper. Stir in yogurt mixture.

Place crab mixture on top of avocado mixture and serve.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Chicken Taco Salad


This salad is fairly quick and easy to make if you use a rotisserie chicken.

Serves 6 ( 1 c. lettuce, topped with about 3/4 c. chicken mixture, 1/3 c. corn mixture, radishes and tortilla strips = 8 points +)


  • 6 ( 6 inch) corn tortillas
  • 1 c. salsa verde
  • 3 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 3 c. rotisserie chicken ( mixture of white and dark meat)
  • 1/2 c. sliced green onions
  • 2 T. lime juice, divided
  • 5 tsp. olive oil, divided
  • 2/3 c. black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2/3 c. frozen kernel corn, thawed
  • 2/3 c. chopped red bell pepper
  • 1/4 c. chopped, fresh cilantro
  • 6 c. chopped Romaine lettuce
  • 3 radishes, sliced thinly
  • salt and pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 450. Cut tortillas into 1/4 inch strips, place on a baking sheet and spray with cooking spray. Bake 5 minutes, turn and bake an additional 5 minutes or until crisp. Cool.

Heat a nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Add salsa verde and cream cheese. Cook until cream cheese is melted. Stir in chicken, onions and 1 T. lime juice; remove from pan and keep warm.
Rinse out pan, add 2 tsp. oil and swirl to coat.

Add beans, corn and bell pepper. Saute, 2 minutes. Stir in cilantro.

Combine remaining 1 T. lime juice and 1 T. olive oil in a large bowl;  Add lettuce and toss to coat.

Place about 1 c. lettuce on each plate. Top with chicken mixture, corn mixture, radishes and tortilla strips. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Green Apple- Watercress Salad with Avocado Buttermilk Dressing


This was my first time trying watercress and may I say that I can see why the English like it so well. It tastes great and is fun to eat! I think this would make a nice topping to a sandwich in place of the usual lettuce, too!
Watercress is only 4 calories per cup and is packed with isothiocyanates, which may help prevent cancer by ridding the body of carcinogens.
This is another great recipe from the library book I found entitled, "Eating in Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth.

serves 4 ( 2 points +)


  • 1 bunch watercress ( about 4 c.)
  • 1/2 green apple, sliced thinly
  • 1 stalk celery, diced small
  • 1/4 c. low-fat buttermilk
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 avocado
  • 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1/2 T. lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp. honey


Place watercress on a platter. Top with apple and celery.

In a blender, combine remaining ingredients until smooth. Drizzle over salad.

Roasted Red Pepper and Spinach Pasta with Chicken



Light and fresh tasting!

serves 4 ( 1 chicken breast half and 1 c. pasta mixture = 10 points +)


  • 6 oz. uncooked rainbow rotini
  • 2 roasted red peppers ( packed in water), diced
  • 3 oz. ( 3/4 c.) fresh mozzarella pearls or fresh mozzarella, diced
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 tsp. white wine vinegar
  • 2 tsp. crushed garlic
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 c. fresh spinach
  • 4 ( 4 oz.) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves


Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Stir in spinach and let wilt; Drain.

Meanwhile, whisk together oil, vinegar and garlic; set aside.

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Cook chicken until juices run clear. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.

Place diced peppers, pasta mixture and mozzarella in a large bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Toss with olive oil mixture.

Serve pasta topped with chicken.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Chicken and Rice with Cashews



While looking for a use for some chicken thighs, I came across this recipe which I adapted from"Cooking Light". It was very tasty!

serves 4 ( 11 points +)
  • 2 c. cooked Jasmine rice
  • 1/2 tsp. grated lime rind
  • 1 tsp. canola oil
  • 1 tsp. dark sesame oil
  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 T. low-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 1 T. crushed garlic
  • 1 T. crushed ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
  • 2 c. fresh broccoli florets
  • 1 medium orange bell pepper, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 2/3 c. fat-free chicken broth
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 2 T. lime juice
  • 2 T. cashews, chopped
Heat a large nonstick skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add oils and swirl to coat. Combine chicken, 2 T. soy sauce, garlic, ginger and crushed red pepper. Add chicken mixture to pan; cook chicken until done. Remove from pan.
Spray pan with nonstick spray. Add broccoli and peppers. Cook until crisp-tender.

Combine remaining 1 T. soy sauce, chicken broth, and cornstarch in a bowl. Add chicken mixture and broth mixture to pan. Bring to a boil;  cook 2 minutes or until sauce thickens. Remove from heat; stir in lime juice. Spoon 1/2 c. rice onto each plate. Top with 1/4 of chicken mixture. Sprinkle evenly with chopped cashews.

Simply Red Fruit Salad


While at the library last week, I came across a book entitled, "Eating In Color" by Frances Largeman-Roth. The pictures and recipes looked beautiful and full of fresh produce. This recipe was slightly adapted from this book as the original called for pomegranate seeds and they are not in season right now. The sauce made from this recipe gives a fresh and sweet flavor. This recipe could easily be used as a dessert.

serves 8 ( 1/2 c. = 2 points +)

  • 1/2 c. dried cherries
  • 1 lb. strawberries, hulled and quartered
  • 1 c. red grapes ( cut in half if they are large)
  • 2 blood oranges
  • finely grated zest and juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1 T. strawberry jam


In a small microwaveable bowl, cover cherries with enough water just to cover. Microwave 1 minute. Let stand 10 minutes. Drain and reserve the liquid.

Place cherries, strawberries and grapes in a bowl.

Remove the skin and white pith from the oranges, collecting any juices in a bowl. Remove segments from oranges and cut into thirds. Add to the bowl with the fruit mixture.

In a small saucepan, combine reserved liquid from cherries, reserved juice from oranges and lime zest and juice. Add jam and bring to a boil, whisking until smooth. Boil 3 minutes or until sauce has reduced by half. Let cook completely at room temperature.
Drizzle sauce over fruit and toss to coat.

Italian-Style Breakfast Sandwich


Fresh and filling, this sandwich is sure to satisfy!

serves 1 ( 6 points +)

  • 1/4 c. thinly sliced zucchini
  • 1/4 c. grape tomatoes
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 egg. beaten
  • 2 T. part-skim shredded mozzarella
  • 1 multi-grain sandwich thin, toasted


Heat a nonstick skillet and coat with cooking spray. Add zucchini and tomatoes and cook until zucchini is tender and tomatoes pop when gently pressed with the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from pan and place on bottom of toasted sandwich thin.
Spray pan if needed. Add egg and cook. Top with cheese. Place egg over vegetables and top with remaining half of thin.

Maple and Soy Glazed Flank Steak



The marinating time on this recipe is fairly short, making this a good weeknight choice.

serves 4 ( 5 points +)

  • 1 ( 1 lb.) flank steak
  • 1/4 c. less-sodium soy sauce
  • 3 T. sugar free maple syrup ( I used Log Cabin)
  • 2 T. dry sherry or white wine
  • 2 tsp. dark sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. Sriracha ( Asian hot chile sauce)
  • 1/8 tsp. black pepper


Preheat broiler. Pierce steak gently on both sides. Combine steak and remaining ingredients in a shallow dish; turn to coat. Marinate at room temperature for 20 minutes, turning occasionally.

Remove steak from marinade and reserve marinade. Place steak on a broiler pan coated with nonstick spray. Pour reserved marinade in a small saucepan; bring to a boil, stirring well. Cook about 3 minutes or until thick and syrupy.

Brush steak with half of glaze; broil 5 minutes. Turn steak over, and brush with remaining glaze; broil 5 minutes or until desired doneness. Place steak on a cutting board; let stand 5 minutes. Cut diagonally across grain into thin slices.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Mango Black Bean Salad


serves 6 ( 2/3 c. = 4 points +)

  • 1-1/2 c. diced mango
  • 1 c. thinly sliced green onions
  • 1/2 c. cooked brown rice ( I used Minute Rice to save time)
  • 1/4 c. chopped, fresh cilantro
  • 2 T. salsa verde
  • 2 T. lime juice
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 ( 15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed


Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Toss lightly to mix.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Monday, March 17, 2014

Stacked Chicken Enchiladas


This recipe is adapted from Cooking Light. The portion size is quite hearty. You will definitely be full after this meal!

serves 6 ( 10 points +)

  • 1 T. canola oil
  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs ( about 2 lbs.)
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 1 T. crushed garlic
  • 15 oz. crushed tomatoes ( canned)
  • 1 c. chopped fresh cilantro, divided
  • 3 T. lime juice
  • 1 c. salsa verde
  • 12 ( 6 inch) corn tortillas
  • 3/4 c. shredded pepper-jack cheese
  • 6 T. fat-free sour cream


Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to pan and cook until done. Remove and let stand 5 minutes before shredding.
Meanwhile, add onion to pan and cook until translucent. Add garlic, tomatoes, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Stir in shredded chicken.

In a medium bowl, stir together salsa verde and 3/4 c. cilantro.

Spoon 1/4 c. salsa mixture on the bottom of an 11 x 7 inch pan coated with nonstick spray. Top with 4 overlapping tortillas, half of chicken mixture, 1/4 c. salsa mixture. Repeat layers. Top with remaining 4 tortillas and remaining salsa mixture. Sprinkle evenly with cheese. Bake 15 minutes or until golden. Sprinkle with remaining 1/4 c. cilantro. Top each serving with 1 T. sour cream.

Spicy Sausage and Vegetable Soup


Easy and perfect for a cool afternoon or evening meal.

serves 12 ( 1-1/3 c. = 4 points +)

  • 20 oz/ Jenny O hot turkey Italian sausage links, casings removed
  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 2 medium zucchini, halved and sliced
  • 2 medium carrots, sliced thinly
  • 2 celery ribs, sliced
  • 1 T. crushed garlic
  • 1 can ( 15 oz.) whole tomatoes, undrained
  • 6 c. ( 48 oz) fat-free chicken broth
  • 2 ( 15 oz) cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • salt and pepper to taste


Heat a large saucepan over medium heat. Add sausage, onions, carrots, celery and zucchini. Cook until meat is no longer pink and onions are translucent. Stir in tomatoes, garlic, broth, beans, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce, heat, cover and simmer 30-45 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

Ploughman's Platter




In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I made this pub-style platter meal. Everyone seemed to enjoy it. The foods are simple, yet satisfying. For the bread recipe, go here brown soda bread. You will end up with leftover chutney. Feel free to use it on another occasion.


serves 8 ( 1 whole sausage, 1 slice bread, 2 slices cheese, 1/8 salad, 2 T. chutney, 1 pickle = 12 points +)

salad:

  • 8 c. red leaf lettuce
  • 2 c. sliced English cucumber
  • 1 c. halved cherry tomatoes
  • 3 T. tarragon vinegar
  • 3 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper
Place lettuce in a large bowl with cucumbers and tomatoes. Whisk together remaining ingredients. Pour over salad and toss to coat, just before serving.



  • 8 chicken apple sausages ( I used Usinger's ) 3 points each
  • 8 slices brown soda bread
  • 8 oz. reduced- fat cheddar, sliced into 16 pieces
  • 8 mini dill pickles


Tomato Chutney:

  • 1-1/4 c. cider vinegar
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp. cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 c. chopped onion
  • 1/2 c. dried cranberries or golden raisins
  • 2 T. crushed garlic
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1/4 tsp. pepper
  • 7 plum tomatoes, quartered


For chutney, place ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 1 hour or until thick, stirring occasionally.

Arrange all ingredients on a platter and serve.


Asparagus- Greek Style


Asparagus is back in season. I love when the shoots are thin and tender. Try this easy recipe and see how you like it!
serves 4 ( 2 points +)


  • 1 lb. asparagus
  • 1 c. cherry tomatoes
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • sea salt to taste
  • 1/4 c. reduced-fat feta cheese


Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place tomatoes on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Bake 4 minutes. Add asparagus to pan. Toss to coat with olive oil. Sprinkle with sea salt. Return pan to oven and bake 9 minutes or until done. Remove pan and sprinkle with feta. 

Parmesan and Pine Nut Crusted Oven-Fried Chicken



serves 6 ( 7 points +)

  • 3 T. pine nuts
  • 1 T. ground yellow cornmeal
  • 1/2 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp. finely chopped fresh Rosemary
  • 1/2 c. flour
  • 1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1/2 c. low-fat buttermilk
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 T. canola oil


Preheat oven to 425. Combine first three ingredients in a food processor and process until smooth. Combine nut mixture, baking soda and next five ingredients ( through pepper) in a shallow dish. In another dish, combine egg white and buttermilk.
Dip chicken in egg white mixture, then dredge in flour mixture.
Heat an oven-proof skillet over medium-high heat. Add canola oil. Fry chicken until browned on one side. Flip. Put the pan in the oven and cook 10 minutes or until chicken is done.
Serve with a slice of lemon if desired.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Chicken Thighs with Cilantro Sauce


This recipe comes from "Cooking Light Magazine". It has a bit of an Asian flair. The recipe only takes about 15-20 minutes total and is full of flavor and a special treat for a weeknight meal. The points value is 7+ for two thighs, which is great. If you opt for one thigh, it is 4+. 

serves 4 ( 2 thighs and 1 T. sauce = 7 points+)


  • 8 skinless, boneless chicken thighs ( about 2 lbs.)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
  • 2 T. finely chopped onion or shallot
  • 1 tsp. crushed garlic
  • 1/3 c. chopped, fresh cilantro ( I think I used more)
  • 1-1/2 T. dark sesame oil
  • 1 T. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp. Sriracha sauce ( hot chile sauce)
  • 1/2 tsp. grated lime rind


Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Spray with nonstick spray. Sprinkle chicken with 1/4 tsp. salt. Add to pan and cook until browned on one side ( about 6-7 minutes). Turn and cook until chicken is done. Place chicken on a platter. 
Meanwhile, place remaining ingredients in a food processor and pulse until blended. Serve about 1-1/2 tsp. cilantro mixture over each chicken thigh.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Sirloin, Arugula and Roasted Red Pepper Salad


We have actually had a couple of days that felt like "spring" might be arriving! This has put me in the mood for fresh-tasting salads! My husband and son, Joey, made this dinner for us over the weekend. It is simple, but delicious. The peppery taste of the arugula pairs nicely with the sirloin.  I hope you like it!

serves 4 ( 7 points +)
Salad:

  • 1 lb. lean sirloin, trimmed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 roasted red peppers, sliced
  • 8 c. ( or more) of Arugula lettuce
  • 4 tsp. grated Parmesan cheese


Dressing:

  • 2 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
Sprinkle steak with salt and pepper. Grill or cook in a skillet until desired doneness. Let stand 5 minutes before slicing.
Place 2 c. ( or more, depending on how much lettuce you would like) in each of the four bowls. Top with steak and peppers. Sprinkle with cheese. Drizzle with dressing.

For dressing, whisk all ingredients together until blended.



Friday, March 7, 2014

Lemon Blueberry Waffles


We enjoyed these healthy, home-made waffles for breakfast this week. The original recipe comes from a site called "The Gracious Pantry"www.thegraciouspantry.com". I have adapted it slightly and I cut the recipe in half since there were only a few of us for breakfast that morning. These can also be made into pancakes if you do not have a waffle maker.

Makes 5 waffles ( 5 points + each. Add additional points for syrup)


  • 1-1/2 c. white whole wheat flour
  • 2 c. vanilla almond milk
  • 1 egg
  •  1 egg white
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • zest of one lemon
  • 1 c. fresh blueberries


Whisk all ingredients together, except for blueberries in a large bowl. Stir in berries.
Spray your waffle maker well as blueberries can stick. Cook as you normally would cook your waffles.

Herbed Chicken and Tomatoes Over Fettuccine


You will enjoy this quick weeknight meal. I chose to use spinach fettuccine because of the nice color. I was needing to see something green after this long winter!

serves 6 ( 1 chicken breast half with 2/3 c. pasta = 8 points +)

  • 8 oz. fettuccine
  • 1-1/2 tsp. dried basil
  • 1-1/2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. dried Rosemary
  • 3 T. flour, divided
  • 6 ( 4 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 can ( 15 oz) diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1-1/2 c. fat-free chicken broth
  • 2 T. fat-free half and half


Cook pasta until al dente, drain.
Meanwhile mix seasonings in a small dish. Combine 2 T. flour with 2/3 of spice mixture in another dish.
Coat chicken in seasoned flour. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken. Cook until golden and cooked through. Remove and keep warm.
Spray skillet with nonstick spray. Add onion and cook until softened. Add 1 T. flour and stir. Add drained tomatoes, broth and remaining spice mixture. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer 5-10 minutes or until beginning to thicken. Stir in half and half. Return chicken to skillet and heat through. Serve chicken and sauce over pasta.

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