Thursday, February 26, 2009

Linsey's Black Bean & Avocado Soup

5 cans black beans, drained
2 cans chicken or veg broth
1 c. sliced carrots
1 can corn, drained
1 bell pepper, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
2 tbl olive oil
Garnishes: chopped fresh cilantro, diced avocado, sour cream

Puree 2 cans of beans and 1 can of broth. Set aside.

Saute onion, carrots, pepper, and garlic in oil until tender. Add puree and rest of ingredients. Simmer 30 min.

Mushroom & Spinach Saute

2 tbl olive oil
2 clove garlic, minced
2 cups sliced mushrooms
6 cups fresh spinach leaves
salt to taste

Heat a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, garlic, and mushrooms. Saute until mushrooms are just cooked, about 5 min. Add the spinach. Cook and stir until the spinach wilts. Add salt to taste.

2 servings

Creamy Shrimp & Pasta

12 oz pasta of your choice
4 oz light cream cheese
2 tbl olive oil
1 tbl butter or margarine
1 cup chopped tomatoes
4 tbl shredded Parmesan cheese
2 scallions, chopped
6 tsp minced garlic
1/2 c. fat free milk
1 lb shrimp, cooked, peeled & deveined

Cook the pasta according to the package directions and drain.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil, butter, tomatoes and garlic. Add the cream cheese and milk and stir until smooth. Add Parmesan cheese and shrimp. Toss the shrimp sauce with the pasta.

8 servings

Quinoa with Spinach & Feta

1/2 c. uncooked quinoa
1 cup water
1 tsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 cup fresh spinach leaves
1 oz reduced fat feta cheese, crumbled

Rinse the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer. Put the quinoa and 1 cup water in a small saucepan, bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce heat to simmer until water is absorbed, about 10-15 min.

Meanwhile, heat a nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the olive oil and garlic and cook until the garlic is golden - be careful not to burn it. Add the spinach and the cooked quinoa to the skillet and stir until the spinach wilts. Add the feta and stir to combine.

2 servings

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Salmon with Avocado Dip

1 lb salmon fillets
1 tsp dillweed
1 tsp lemon pepper
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Spray a baking pan with cooking spray. Place the salmon in the pan skin side down. Sprinkle the salmon with the seasonings and bake 10-12 min. or until fish flakes easily. Serve with the avocado dip.

4 servings

1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and chopped
1-1/2 tsp lemon juice
2 tbl plain yogurt
1/4 tsp salt
dash pepper

Whiz together in a mini food processor.

Tahini Dip

1 tbl tahini
2 tbl lemon juice
1 tbl soy sauce
1 dash black pepper
1/2 tbl ground ginger
1/4 c. plain yogurt

Whisk together in a small bowl.

Maple Country Pork Ribs

1/4 c. chopped onion
1/4 tsp ground allspice
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tbl SF maple syrup
dash black pepper
1 tbl soy sauce
1 lb country style pork ribs

Spray the inside of a crockpot with cooking spray. Place the onion in the crockpot. Put the ribs on top of the onions. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a small bowl and pour over the ribs. Cover and cook on low 6-7 hours.

4 servings

Fennel-Crusted Steak

1 tbl fennel seeds, crushed
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme (or 1/2 tsp dried)
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (or 1/2 tsp dried)
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 lb steak

Combine fennel, herbs, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Sprinkle half of the mixture onto the steak and press it into the meat with the back of a spoon. Turn the steak over, sprinkle the rest of the seasonings over it and press into the meat.

Preheat the broiler. Spray a broiler pan with cooking spray and place the meat on the pan. Broil 4-5 minutes per side or until meat reaches desired degree of doneness.

4 servings

Greek Meatballs with Tzatziki Sauce

1 lb ground beef or turkey
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp onion powder
1-1/2 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp allspice
2 tbl FF half & half
1/4 tsp black pepper
Mix all ingredients together in a large bowl. Scoop up 2 tbl of meat at a time and form into meatballs. Saute in a large nonstick skillet until browned on all sides.

4 servings

3/4 c. plain yogurt or Greek yogurt
3 tbl light sour cream
1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1/4 tsp garlic powder
Whiz in food processor. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Zucchini Pancakes

4 cups grated zucchini (about 1 lb)
1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese
2 tbl chopped scallions
1 tsp dried basil
6 tablespoons egg beaters
olive oil cooking spray
light sour cream or plain Greek yogurt (optional)

Place zucchini in a colander and let stand 30 min. at room temperature, then wrap zucchini in several layers of paper towels and squeeze out as much moisture as possible.

Mix zucchini with cheese, scallions, basil and egg beaters in a large bowl.

Spray a large non-stick skillet with olive oil cooking spray and heat over medium high heat. Spoon 2 tablespoons of zucchini mixture into skillet for each pancake. Cook 3 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream or yogurt if desired.

4 servings (16 pancakes)

Cauliflower, Mushroom & Cheddar Casserole

3 cups cooked cauliflower florets
1 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbl fat free half and half
1/4 tsp salt
8 oz reduced-fat cheddar cheese, shredded
2 tbl breadcrumbs
butter-flavored cooking spray

Preheat oven to 350F.

Spray a casserole dish with cooking spray.

Mix cauliflower, mushrooms, garlic, half and half, salt, and cheese in a large bowl. Put cauliflower mixture in the prepared casserole dish. Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and spray with butter-flavored cooking spray.

Bake 30 minutes

4 servings

Raspberry Shrimp

Put 1 lb peeled, deveined shrimp in a zip-loc plastic bag. Pour marinade into bag and squish the bag to coat the shrimp. Refrigerate 30 minutes.

Remove shrimp from marinade with a slotted spoon. Reserve the marinade.

Spray a large non-stick skillet with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Add shrimp to skillet and saute until shrimp is pink (do not overcook). Remove shrimp from skillet. Pour reserved marinade into skillet and boil 1 minute. Serve shrimp with marinade drizzled on it.

4 servings

1 tbl SF raspberry syrup
1/8 c. canola oil
1/8 c. raspberry vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced
1/8 tsp tarragon
dash of pepper
Whisk ingredients together until emulsified.

Deviled Crab

1 lb imitation crab, flaked
1 c. cracker crumbs
3/4 c. diced celery
3/4 c. chopped onion
4 tbl butter or margarine, melted
1/4 c. fat free half and half
1/4 c. white wine
1 tsp dry mustard
1/2 tsp salt
cayenne pepper to taste
1 tbl chopped green pepper

Preheat oven to 350F.

Coat a casserole dish with cooking spray.

Mix all ingredients thoroughly and spoon into the casserole dish. Bake 30 minutes.

4 servings

Monday, February 9, 2009

Easy Black Bean Soup

1 tbl olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
4 1-lb cans black beans, drained & rinsed
1 tbl lemon juice
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp salt
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth, or water

Heat the oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Saute the onion in the oil until translucent, 3-4 minutes. Add the garlic and saute another 3 minutes.

Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a simmer.

Cover and cook for 10 minutes.

Uncover the soup and mash it slightly with a potato masher or (if you're on a liquid or pureed diet) whiz it in a blender or food processor until smooth.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream, Greek yogurt, and/or mashed avocado.

6-8 servings

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Limas and Spinach

This recipe is done in the microwave but can be done on the stove-top if you prefer.

1 tbl olive oil
1/2 c. chopped red onion
2 cups cooked lima beans, at room temperature
1/2 c. chicken or vegetable broth
1/4 tsp fennel seeds, ground (optional)
4 cups loosely packed fresh spinach leaves
1 tbl white wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
black pepper to taste
1 tbl snipped fresh chives

Heat the olive oil in a 2-quart microwave safe casserole for 2 minutes on high. Stir in the onion and cook 4 minutes. Remove onion and set aside.

Add the lima beans, broth and fennel to the casserole. Cover and cook 2 minutes.

Stir in the spinach, cover and cook 2 minutes.

Stir in onion, vinegar, salt and pepper. Cover and let stand 30 seconds. Sprinkle with chives and serve.

4 servings

Pecan Chicken Salad

2 cups cooked chopped chicken
3 oz seedless grapes, cut in half
3 oz pecan halves
1/3 cup diced celery
1/3 c. chopped fresh dill
1/2 cup light mayonnaise
1/4 c. light sour cream
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper

Mix the dill, mayo, sour cream, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the chicken, grapes, pecans, and celery and toss well. Cover and refrigerate 2 hours.

Serve on a bed of mixed lettuce greens, if desired.

3-4 servings

Eggplant & Mushroom Puree

2 eggplants
2 cloves garlic, slivered
1 tbl olive oil
3/4 c. grated Gruyere or Swiss cheese
2 tbl light sour cream or plain Greek yogurt
1 tbl butter or margarine
8 oz fresh mushrooms, sliced

Prick the eggplants with a sharp knife in several places and insert the garlic slivers into the slits. Place the eggplants on a plate and microwave 10 minutes or until the eggplants are soft. Allow to cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 375F. Spray a 1-qt baking dish with cooking spray.

Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise and scoop out the flesh. Put the eggplant flesh and garlic slivers in a large food processor together with 1 tbl olive oil. Process until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and stir in cheese and sour cream.

Melt 1 tbl butter in a skillet. Add the mushrooms and cook over medium heat for 5 minuates. Fold mushrooms into the eggplant mixture and season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer mixture to the baking dish, cover, and bake 30 min.

4-6 servings

Roasted Chicken with Garlic, Lemon & Rosemary

2 heads garlic
1 large onion
1 roasting chicken (4 to 4-1/2 lbs)
1 tsp dried tarragon
salt and pepper to taste
2 lemons, halved
6 small sprigs fresh rosemary
1 cup chicken broth

Preheat the oven to 350F.

Remove the outer skin of the garlic, separating the cloves. You don't have to individually peel the cloves. Set aside.

Cut the onion in half, then in slivers. Set aside.

Rinse the chicken and pat it dry, setting aside any giblets. Sprinkle the cavity with tarragon, salt and pepper. Place the lemons and the rosemary inside the cavity and tie the legs together with kitchen string.

Spray a large Dutch oven or deep skillet with olive oil cooking spray and heat over medium heat. Place the chicken in the pan and brown on all sides, using wooden spoons to carefully turn it without puncturing the skin. When it is pale golden all over, remove the chicken from the pan, reserving the cooking juices.

Spray a roasting pan with cooking spray and place the garlic cloves, onion, and any giblets (but not the liver) in the pan. Place the chicken on top and pour the browning juices over it. Add the broth, cover the pan with aluminum foil, place on center rack of oven, and bake for 30 minutes.

Remove the foil. Stir the garlic and onions and baste the chicken with the broth. Bake, uncovered, basting every 15 minutes, for 1 hour.

Remove the chicken to a serving platter. Discard the string, lemons and rosemary. Slice the chicken and serve with the garlic cloves, onions, and pan juices.

4 servings

Roasted Red Pepper Stuffed Mushrooms

12 large mushrooms (about 12 oz)
1 tbl olive oil
1/2 c. diced roasted red peppers
1 tsp minced garlic
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
2 tbl dry white wine (or chicken broth)
1/4 c. shredded smoked Gouda cheese (or your favorite cheese)
2 tbl dry breadcrumbs

Preheat oven to 350F.

Stem the mushrooms and reserve the stems.

Spray a shallow baking pan with olive oil cooking spray. Place mushrooms in the pan, rounded side up. Spray the mushrooms with olive oil cooking spray. Turn the mushrooms over and spray again.

Chop the mushrooms stems and saute in a small skillet in 1 tbl olive oil until golden, about 3 minutes. Stir in roasted red peppers, garlic, salt and pepper. Cook and stir another 2 minutes. Add wine, cook and stir until evaporated, about 1 minute. Remove from heat, stir in cheese and crumbs. Fill mushrooms caps evenly with this mixture. Bake until mushroom caps are tender, about 15 minutes.

4 servings

Coconut Shrimp

1/2 c. SF coconut syrup
36 medium shrimp, peeled & deveined
juice and zest of 1 lime
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp minced fresh ginger
pinch of chili flakes
1/4 tsp each salt and pepper
1/4 c. shredded coconut, toasted
2 tsp chopped fresh cilantro

Combine syrup, lime juice and zest, garlic, ginger, chili flakes, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Put the shrimp in a zip-loc plastic bag and pour the marinade over it. Seal the bag and squish it to coat the shrimp with the marinade. Refrigerate 30 min.

Preheat the broiler. Spray a broiler pan with cooking spray.

Remove the shrimp from the marinade using a slotted spoon and arrange the shrimp in a single layer on the broiler pan. Broil 2 minutes, flip shrimp over and broil for 2-3 more minutes or until shrimp are opaque.

While the shrimp is cooking, boil the marinade in a small saucepan until reduced to about 1/4 cup. Serve the shrimp with a little marinade drizzled on top.

3-4 servings

Mushroom Barley Risotto

3 tbl grated Parmesan cheese
4 cups FF chicken or vegetable broth
2 tbl chopped fresh basil (or 1 tsp dried)
1 lb. mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
1 cup dry white wine
3 cups pearl barley, sorted and rinsed
1 small onion, chopped
2 tbl olive oil, divided
salt and pepper to taste

Bring the broth to a boil in a saucepan. Cover the pan and turn off the heat.

Heat 1 tbl of the olive oil in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and saute until softened. Reduce the heat to low. Add the barley and stir to coat with oil. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until wine is absorbed. Add the hot broth, 1/2 cup at a time, stirring frequently, adding additional broth as each 1/2 cup is absorbed by the barley mixture. This should take about 30 minutes. If the barley isn't tender yet when you run out of broth, add a little water and continue to cook until it's tender.

Put the remaining 1 tbl olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and saute until mushrooms are golden, about 5 minutes. Stir the mushrooms and basil into the barley mixture. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and serve.

4 servings

Raspberry Vinaigrette Dressing

2 tbl SF raspberry syrup
3/4 c. canola oil
1/4 c. raspberry vinegar
1 tbl Dijon mustard
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp thyme
1/4 tsp marjoram
dash of pepper

Whisk ingredients together until emulsified.

Yield: 1-1/2 cups

Monday, February 2, 2009

Chocolate Chip Cookies

This recipe makes traditional chocolate chip cookies just slightly less evil nutritionally. Do not make them if you have self-control problems!

1-3/4 c. flour
1/4 c. chocolate PB2 (or regular PB2)
1/4 c. chocolate protein powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 c. butter or margarine, softened (or 2/3 c. butter + 1/3 c. peanut butter)
3/4 c. Splenda baking blend
3/4 c. Splenda brown sugar blend
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs (or 1/2 c. eggbeaters)
2 cups sugar-free chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 375F.

Combine flour, PB2, protein powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.

Beat butter, Splenda, and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded spoonful onto ungreased baking sheets.

Bake 9-10 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes, then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Yield: 60 cookies