Thursday, March 31, 2011

Asparagus and Poached Egg Salad

Now that Spring has officially sprung, and asparagus is $.99 a pound rather than $3.99 a pound its time to start eating it! I love asparagus! There are so many ways to eat it: blanched - which keeps it nice and crisp, roasting, steaming, or shredding raw asparagus onto a salad - its all just wonderful! With Spring also brings the heat - it was 80 degrees last night! The perfect salad-for-dinner weather. One of my favorite salads is greens/roasted veggies/poached eggs - there are a million combinations you can do. I used asparagus but get creative: mushrooms, tomatoes, and brussel sprouts are all great roasted then top your greens and you have a salad that makes a meal. This meal is light and with the poached egg you get protein and it makes a sort of dressing.

Asparagus & Poached Egg Salad

The Stuff:
1 lb Asparagus with hard ends cut off
2 egg
4 cups spinach or whatever salad green you like
4 slices bacon
1 tomato, sliced
2 tablespoon grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon olive oil - for roasting asparagus
1 tablespoon white vinegar (for poaching eggs)
dressing (see recipe below)
1 shallot, minced
1 tablespoon dijon mustard - the more seeds the better!
3 tablespoons olive oil, I use meyer lemon flavored, you can also just use meyer lemon juice, or regular lemon juice if you want
1 tablespoon orange champagne Vinaigrette
salt & pepper

The How To:
Preheat oven to 350, pour olive oil onto cookie sheet, lay asparagus in a single layer, sprinkle with salt and pepper and roast for 15-20 minutes
While asparagus is roasting, cook up bacon until it is crisp, pour out bacon grease. Stick bacon on paper towels to soak up grease.
In same pan you used for bacon, saute the shallot for 5 minutes, set aside for the dressing. Meanwhile, mix olive oil, vinaigrette, mustard, lemon juice (if using), and s&p until combined, then add shallots. This will be your dressing - set aside

In a shallow sauce pan, boil 3 cups water and vinegar. Crack 1 egg into a shallow cup, careful not to break the yolk, once water and vinegar are boiling add the egg using the cup as a vessel, repeat with 2nd egg. Do not plop it into the pan, slowly pour it in. Once, eggs are in, turn heat off but keep pan on the burner. Leave it there until ready to use

Distribute salad greens onto 2 plates, distribute sliced tomato, crumble bacon, roasted asparagus, evenly onto greens. Top with a poached egg - when removing egg use a slotted spoon to drain all the water. Be careful when scraping it off the bottom of the pan - upi don't want to crack the yolk. Top with half the dressing and half of the cheese. Crack yolk and eat up!

weight Watcher Friends: 1 salad is 6 points

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Roasted Cauliflower

I've always looked at cauliflower as broccoli's ugly cousin - I've never liked the taste, I've never been a fan and I've never bought it, until now. Ohmygosh it is actually good - if you cook it right. I stumbled upon a roasted cauliflower recipe and wowza, it's good!

Make this tonight - you'll fall in love with cauliflower, too, or maybe you already like it and I'm just the weird one.

Roasted Cauliflower

The Stuff:
Head of cauliflower, cut into bite size pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt, pepper and chili powder to taste

The How To:
  • Preheat oven to 450.
  • Pour olive oil on a cookie sheet
  • In a large ziplock bag ad cauliflower and seasonings and shake
  • Pour contents of ziplock onto prepared cookie sheet
  • Bake for 25-35 minutes

Weight Watcher Friends: 1 pt for half

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Sally Lunn Bread

One of my favorite bloggers, Deb from Smitten Kitchen is just fabulous. She takes amazing photos and makes some delicious food. One of her newest recipes is an adapted recipe from Maida Heatter's cookbook Sally Lunn Bread. My oh my this stuff is good! This was my first time using yeast - I was always scared but it is easy. I should have let it rise a little longer, but it still turned out wonderfully.  This bread sorta taste like brioche - I bet it would make a wonderful french toast. Its a little sweet, melts in your mouth and worth making!

Sally Lunn Bread 
The Stuff:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon table salt
1 1/8 teaspoon active dry yeast
3/4 cup milk
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk

The How To:

  • In a large bowl mix 3/4 cup flour, sugar, salt and yeast, I used my kitchen aid bowl
  • In a saucepan heat milk and butter and then pour that mixture into the dry ingredients, mix for 2 minutes or mix vigorously by hand for 3 minutes
  • Mix in egg, yolk, another 1/2 cup flour and mix again for 2 minutes in mixer or mix vigorously by hand for 3 minutes
  • Add the rest of the flour and mix until smooth
  • Cover with plastic and let rise for an hour or until doubled
  • Butter and flour a loaf pan 
  • Once dough has doubled, scoop out onto prepared loaf pan, cover with buttered plastic for 15 minutes
  • Remove plastic and set for 15 minutes more, during this time preheat oven to 375
  • Bake for 35-40 minutes
  • Cool for 5 minutes, then flip out onto rack to cool completely or start eating it then

Weight Watchers: Makes 12 slices, 1 slice is 4p+


Friday, March 18, 2011

Corned Beef and Cabbage

This post is a day late and a dollar short, BUT you can eat corned beef and cabbage any day of the year. And after tasting this recipe I will definitely be eating it soon! This was so easy its almost a crime - 10 minutes to prepare stick all the ingredients in a crock pot, and you have a delicious meal 12 hours later!

Corned Beef and Cabbage

The Stuff:
3lb corned beef, rinsed keep the seasoning packet
1 cup baby carrots
6 red potatoes quartered
1 head of cabbage quartered
12oz Guiness
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon horseradish
1 tablespoon mustard
1 teaspoon mustard powder

The How To:
  • Do these first steps the night before.
  • Place corned beef at bottom of crock pot
  • Pour beer over beef, pour seasoning packet and mustard powder and stir
  • Add bay leaf, 3 grinds of pepper, and 3 dashes of salt
  • Top meat with potatoes and carrots
  • Top with horseradish and mustard
  • Place cabbage on top squishing down to fit lid
  • Place in fridge over night
  • The next morning, place in crock pot on low for 12 hours
  • The meat will be falling apart and the veggies with be nice and soft, remove the bay leaf, open a Guiness and eat up!
Fresh out of the crock pot
The Veggies


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Tamale Pie

Polenta is one of those things I always have on hand. I have both the prepared and non prepared versions in my pantry. This tamale pie uses the prepared roll from Trader Joe's. This dish has flavors similar to a tamale but without all the fuss. 30 minutes start to finish, filling and a good way to sneak in veggies! Serve with a salad and you have a well balanced meal. This is also easily made vegetarian - just take out the meat!

Tamale Pie

The Stuff:
1 roll of prepared polenta cut into quarter inch slices

Turkey Taco meat from here
3/4 can fat free refried beans
1 cup reduced fat mozzarella cheese
1 small can diced green chilies
1/2 cup chopped mushrooms, sauteed
5 chopped small sweet peppers, sauteed 

The How To:
  • Preheat oven to 350
  • Spray an 8"x8" casserole dish with cooking spray
  • Cover bottom of dish with layer of polenta rounds, rip one round into pieces and cover up any holes
  • Use a spatula to cover polenta with refried beans
  • Top beans with turkey meat
  • Top meat and beans with leftover polenta
  • Top with the chilies and cheese
  • Add the sauteed veggies (note, you can add zucchini, tomatoes, onions, green bell peppers, squash or whatever other veggies float your boat. You can saute them all together after you cook the turkey  - in the same pan even - until tender)
  • Top that with remaining cheese, and a couple dashes of ancho chili power or chili powder
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly
Weight Watchers friends: Cut into 6 servings, 1 serving is 6 points


Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Blood Orange Tart

My coworker brought me a huge bag of blood oranges from her tree the other day and it made me giddy! I love blood oranges! For the most part, blood oranges are tart, juicy and so pretty! Full of great colors - orange, magenta and pink. I've made a couple dishes with them, one being this gorgeous tart. I served it with fat free frozen yogurt and just loved it.  

Blood Orange Tart

The Stuff:
4 blood oranges, segment and peel the white pith, reserve the juice 
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoon butter, cut up into pieces
5 sheets puff pastry, thawed
1 egg white

The How To:
  • Spray non-stick cooking spray on a cookie sheet, sprinkle with a little flour, lay the pastry sheets (all five stacked on top of each other) on the cookie sheet
  • Place orange segments in a pile about 6 inches wide
  • Place butter on top of orange pile
  • Fold pastry on top to make a smaller square
  • Here it is completed, but you can see what the edges look like
  • Top with brown sugar nad reserved blood orange juice (about 1/4 cup)
  • Brush egg white on edges of pastry
  • Bake at 350 for 25-30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Nacho Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Ok, I will admit, when I saw this recipe on Hungry Girl tv show (1pm pacific on Cooking Channel) I was thinking, "This lady is crazy! Nachos and chicken - blah"! But, I decided to give it a shot, why not? I had all the ingredients on hand. I did change some things up, but I mostly stuck to the recipe and man, it was delish! The MR and his brother gobbled it up, too!
Pretend this is cooked, I, once again, forgot to take photos!

Nacho Stuffed Chicken Breasts

The Stuff:
4 5 oz chicken breast sliced in half (HG pounded hers down, cutting is way easier)
4 wedges of Laughing Cow Cheese, French onion flavor (HG used plain, which is too plain for me. French onion gave it a nice flavor, I bet the chipotle would be delish, too!)
1/2 Fat Free Refried Beans
1/4 cup fat free shredded cheddar cheese
1 teaspoon: cumin, chili powder, and paprika
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup panko crumbs (HG uses fat free tortilla chips - I didn't have them, just use what you have - regular bread crumbs would work too)

The How To:
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray a cooking sheet with cooking spray, set aside
  • Filling: combine refried beans, cheddar cheese, seasonings and laughing cow
  • Chicken: Season with salt and pepper
  • Spoon filling evenly onto chicken breast, fold chicken over and secure with a toothpick, some filling will squeeze out, but don't worry
  • Top each breast with 1/8 cup panko crumb, dash of cumin, chili powder and paprika
  • Bake for 15 minutes under foil tent, remove tent and bake an additional 10 minutes or until chicken is done
Weight Watcher Friends: 6p+ per chicken breast


Monday, March 14, 2011


This is my version of panzella or tomato salad. This was really tasty, filing and made a great lunch. I bought a container of mini heirloom tomatoes at Trader Joe's and thought panzella was the perfect thing to make out of them.


The Stuff:
2 cups heirloom tomatoes cut into bite size pieces (or whatever kind you have on hand, make sure they are ripe!)
4 inches cut off day old sourdough baguette
2 handfuls spinach
1/8 cup parmesan reggiano
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinaigrette
2 grinds black pepper
pinch of salt

The How To:
Cut the bread into inch size cubes, place in medium size bowl
Toss with olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette
Add tomatoes and spinach and toss again
Sprinkle with salt and pepper
Set aside for 30 minutes to let the flavors marinate
Serves 2

Weight Watcher Friends:  1 serving is 7p+


Wednesday, March 9, 2011


Tonight is cooking club with my gals! You remember it from here. Tonight's theme is Italian and I am in charge of dessert. What better Italian dessert is there besides Tiramisu? Gelato is up there but I sure has heck am not making gelato! Tiramisu is so rich and creamy and yummy and sinful! I was on a search of a lower fat/lower calorie version and I think I found it. This recipe is originally from Weight Watchers. Sorry for the lack of pictures lately!


The Stuff:
12oz angel food cake
8oz ff cream cheese, softened
4oz light cream cheese, softened 
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
1 oz semisweet chocolate, finely grated (I used Bakers)
1 cup brewed espresso or strong coffee
The How To:
  • With a serrated knife cut angel food cake into 12 pieces, I cut it in half, then in half again then each of the four pieces were cut into 3rds, set aside
  • Use a mixer to blend cheeses, sugar and extract
  • In a small bowl mix chocolate and cocoa
  • In a wide, shallow dish pour in coffee
  • Dip each piece of cake into coffee and flip to coat completely
  • Cover the bottom of a round pie pan with 6 slices of the coffee soaked cake, break it up and stretch and move so there is no part of the pan showing and then pat it down so its even
  • Spread half of the cream cheese mixture on top
  • Sprinkle with half of the chocolate and cocoa mixture
  • Do this once more and finishing with the chocolate and cocoa mixture
  • Refrigerate for at least 2 hours
  • Cut into 12 pieces

Weight Watcher Friends: 4pps for 1 serving


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Ricotta Cheese Cake

I have the BIGGEST sweet tooth! I have to finish each meal with a sweet treat and last night was no different. I made a creamy tomato pasta sauce, which I am still working on the recipe but will post it soon - it was yummy but not blog worthy yet. Afterwards I whipped up the EASIEST cake ever. It is light, not too sweet and melts in your mouth - really, it does :) sorry for the lack of pictures, I was tired, but I got the finished piece - that's all that matters!
Ricotta Cheese Cake

The Stuff:
1 package of yellow cake
10oz diet gingerale
15oz low fat ricotta cheese
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup sugar
3 egg whites

The How To:
  • Mix the yellow cake mix and the 10oz of soda
NOTE: If you want, you could just bake the cake from here, it is a light version of the basic boxed cake mix, it takes out the added fat and something with the diet soda makes it work - its really good! I wanted something more so I searched the fridge, found the ricotta and put it to use
  • Stir ricotta, vanilla, sugar and egg whites until well mixed
  • Spray a 13 x 9 baking dish with Pam spray
  • Pour cake mix in and then add the ricotta mixture evenly on top, use a rubber spatula to spread it
  • Bake at 350 for 1 hour or until the top isn't jiggly
  • Try to wait 10 minutes for it to cool - good luck with that, I dug right in!
I hate using the flash with food pictures, but I wanted to show
you the ricotta layer, it sinks to the bottom!


Weight Watcher Friends: Cut cake into 24pieces, 1 piece is 3 points

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Coconut Oatmeal

OK, before you start judging this based on the name come with me on a little journey - ok, really, its not much of a journey, but I have a little story for you. The other night I tried to make a peach and jalapeno salsa for my salmon but it did not turn out the way I wanted it to. One of the ingredients I used was light coconut milk, not wanting to waste anything I kept thinking about what I could make with the coconut milk. Then light bulb - oatmeal! I boiled the coconut milk, added some spices and have a delicious breakfast! Good story huh?

I did not take pictures of this meal for two reasons. One, I forgot, two photographing oatmeal is a skill that I nor my iPhone have - it looks like a pile of um, gray blahness, sounds good huh? Trust me! It is yummy!

The Stuff:
1 1/2 cups quick cooking oatmeal
1 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup raisins

The How To:
  • Bring milks to a boil on low
  • Add spices
  • Stir in oatmeal and raisins
  • Add more liquid (water or milk) if it needs it
  • Cook for 8 minutes on medium low or until oatmeal is cooked
  • If you want to be naughty serve with maple syrup and heavy cream

Weight Watcher Friends: 1/2 cup 4p+