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  • Vegetarian Taco Salad
    • Wednesday December 28, 2011

      From eatingwell.com

      • 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
      • 1 large onion, chopped
      • 1 1/2 C. fresh corn kernels (see Tip) or frozen, thawed
      • 4 large tomatoes
      • 1 1/2 C. cooked long-grain brown rice (see Tip)
      • 1 (15-oz) can black, kidney or pinto beans, rinsed
      • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
      • 1 1/2 tsp. dried oregano, divided
      • 1/4 tsp. salt
      • 1/2 C. chopped fresh cilantro
      • 1/3 C. prepared salsa
      • 2 C. shredded iceberg or romaine lettuce
      • 1 C. shredded pepper Jack cheese
      • 2 1/2 C. coarsely crumbled tortilla chips
      • Lime wedges for garnish


      Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and corn; cook, stirring, until the onion begins to brown, about 5 minutes.

      Coarsely chop 1 tomato. Add it to the pan along with rice, beans, chili powder, 1 tsp. oregano and 1/4 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the tomato cooks down, about 5 minutes. Let cool slightly.

      Coarsely chop the remaining 3 tomatoes. Combine with cilantro, salsa and the remaining 1/2 teaspoon oregano in a medium bowl.

      Toss lettuce in a large bowl with the bean mixture, half the fresh salsa and 2/3 cup cheese. Serve sprinkled with tortilla chips and the remaining cheese, passing lime wedges and the remaining fresh salsa at the table.

      Servings: 6 
      Serving Size: About 1 1/2 Cups
      Calories per serving:  395

  • Fajita-Ranch Chicken Wraps
    • Thursday December 22, 2011

      From my.hearthealthyonline.com

      • 12 oz. skinless, boneless chicken breast strips for stir-frying
      • 1/2 tsp. chili powder
      • 1/4 tsp. garlic powder
      • Nonstick cooking spray
      • 1 small red, yellow, or green sweet pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips
      • 2 Tbsp. bottled reduced-calorie ranch salad dressing
      • 2 whole wheat, tomato, jalapeno, or plain flour tortillas, warmed*
      • 1/2 C. fresh salsa
      • 1/3 C. reduced-fat shredded cheddar cheese

      Preparing the stiry fry

      Cut chicken and bell pepper into strips.

      Sprinkle chicken strips with chili powder and garlic powder. Coat a medium nonstick skillet with nonstick spray; heat over medium-high heat. Cook chicken and sweet pepper strips in hot skillet over medium heat for 4 to 6 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink and pepper strips are tender. Drain if necessary.

      Toss with salad dressing.

      Building the wraps

      Divide chicken and pepper mixture between warmed tortillas. Top with salsa and cheese. Roll up; cut in half.

      Note: To warm tortillas: Wrap tortillas tightly in foil. Heat in a 350 degrees F oven about 10 minutes or until heated through.

  • Teriyaki Salmon
    • Wednesday December 21, 2011

      From health.com

      • 5 Tbsp. Low-sodium teriyaki sauce
      • 1 (6-oz) salmon fillets
      • Sesame seeds, optional

      Making the salmon

      Combine teriyaki sauce and fish in a plastic baggie. Seal and marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes.

      If using, toast sesame seeds in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and set aside.

      Drain fish, discarding marinade, and cook in the skillet for 5 minutes. Turn the heat down to medium-low and cook on the other side for 5 more minutes.

      Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve.

  • Pear & Goat Cheese Crostini
    • Wednesday December 21, 2011

      From the etsy.com blog

      For the jam:

      • 4 ripe pears, such as Bartlett, cored and diced
      • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
      • Juice of 1 lemon
      • 1/2 C. sugar
      • 1/2 c. water

      For the crostini:

      • 1 baguette, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
      • 6 oz. creamy goat cheese
      • Black pepper


      Making the jam

      Combine the pears, rosemary, lemon juice, sugar and water in a medium pot. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, until jammy, about an hour.

      Stir at regular intervals, increasing frequency as water reduces.

      Note: If you're not a fan of the pungent flavor of rosemary, seal the herbs in muslin or cheesecloth for easy removal after cooking.

      Making the crostini

      While the jam is simmering, prepare the crostini: Toast thin rounds of baguette at 300 degrees Fahrenheit until crisp and golden at the edges, about 10 minutes. Set aside.

      Putting it all together

      Smear a small amount of goat cheese over each slice of toasted baguette, top with a spoonful of jam, and finish with black pepper.

      Note: You can serve these with the jam warm or chilled. Store leftover jam in the refrigerator.

  • Italian Chicken-Lentil Soup
    • Monday December 19, 2011

      From eatbetteramerica.com

      • 1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
      • 1 medium onion, chopped (1/2 cup)
      • 1 medium zucchini, chopped (2 cups)
      • 4 medium carrots, sliced (2 cups)
      • 1 C. dried lentils (8 oz), sorted and rinsed
      • 4 1/2 C. reduced-sodium chicken broth
      • 1/4 tsp. pepper
      • 1 C. sliced mushrooms (3 oz)
      • 1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
      • Kale (4-6 cups), optional
      • 1/4 C. chopped fresh or 1 tablespoon dried basil leaves
      • Shredded Parmesan cheese, if desired


      Remove fat from chicken and prep vegetables.

      In 3 1/2- to 6-quart slow cooker, mix the onion, zucchini, carrots, lentils, broth and pepper. Add chicken.

      Cover and cook on Low heat setting 5 to 6 hours.

      Remove chicken from cooker; place on cutting board. Use 2 forks to pull chicken into shreds. Return chicken to cooker.

      Stir in mushrooms and tomatoes (and kale, if using). Cover and continue to cook on Low 15-30 minutes or until heated through.

      Sprinkle with basil. Serve with cheese.

      Servings: 6
      Calories per serving: 300

  • Marinated Grilled Tuna
    • Tuesday December 13, 2011

      From my recipes.com

      • 1/4 C. orange juice
      • 1/4 C. soy sauce
      • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
      • 1 Tbsp. lemon juice
      • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley (optional)
      • 1 clove garlic, minced
      • 1/2 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
      • 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
      • 4 (4-oz.) tuna steaks

      In a large non-reactive dish, mix together the orange juice, soy sauce, olive oil, lemon juice, parsley, garlic, oregano, and pepper. Place the tuna steaks in the marinade and turn to coat. Cover, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

      Preheat grill for high heat.

      Lightly oil grill grate. Cook the tuna steaks for 5 to 6 minutes, then turn and baste with the marinade. Cook for an additional 5 minutes, or to desired doneness. Discard any remaining marinade.

      Servings: 4
      Calories per serving: 200

  • Dijon-Braised Brussels Sprouts
    • Tuesday December 13, 2011

      From smittenkitchen.com

      1 lb. brussels sprouts
      1 Tbsp. unsalted butter
      1 Tbsp. olive oil
      Freshly ground black pepper
      1/2 C. dry white wine
      1 C. broth (chicken or vegetable)
      2 shallots, peeled and thinly sliced
      2 Tbsp. heavy cream
      1 Tbsp. dijon mustard (or more to taste)
      2 Tbsp. chopped flat-leaf parsley (optional)

      Liz's ingredient modifications: Eliminate 1 Tbsp. butter and increase olive oil to 2 Tbsp. Take out heavy cream and stir 1/2 tsp. of arrowroot powder (or corn starch) into 1-2 Tbsp. water before adding to sauce.)

      Making the sprouts:

      Trim sprouts by cutting off steams and removing out leaves, and halve lengthwise.

      In a large skillet, heat butter and oil over medium heat. Arrange halved sprouts in skillet, cut sides down, in one layer. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook sprouts, without turning until undersides are golden brown, about 5 minutes. [If your sprouts don't fit in one layer, brown them in batches, then add them all back to the pan, spreading them as flat as possible, before continuing.]

      Add the shallots, wine and stock and bring to a simmer. Once simmering, reduce the heat to medium-low (for a gentle simmer), cover the pot with a lid (foil works too, if your skillet lacks a lid) and cook the sprouts until they are tender and can be pierced easily with the tip of a paring knife, about 15 minutes.

      Remove the lid, and scoop out brussels. Add cream to the pan and simmer for two to three minutes, until slightly thickened. Whisk in mustard. Taste for seasoning, and adjust as necessary with more salt, pepper or Dijon. Pour sauce over brussels, sprinkle with parsley, if using, and serve immediately.

      Servings: 4
      Calories per serving: 160

  • Vegetable Ricotta Pizza
    • Sunday December 11, 2011

      From myrecipes.com

      • 1 lb. refrigerated fresh pizza dough
      • 2 C. sliced cremini mushrooms
      • 1 C. (1/4-inch-thick) slices zucchini
      • 1/4 tsp. black pepper
      • 1 medium yellow bell pepper, sliced
      • 1 medium red onion, cut into thick slices
      • 5 1/2 tsp. olive oil, divided
      • 1 Tbsp. yellow cornmeal
      • 1/3 C. tomato sauce (or more, as needed)
      • 1 C. (4 oz.) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
      • 1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
      • 1/3 C. part-skim ricotta cheese
      • 2 Tbsp. small fresh basil leaves


      Making the pizza:

      Position an oven rack in the lowest setting; place a pizza stone on rack. (Liz note: We do not have a pizza stone yet. We baked ours on a baking sheet.) Preheat oven to 500°.

      Remove dough from refrigerator. Let stand, covered, for 30 minutes. (Liz note: Or prepare dough of your choice)

      Combine mushrooms and next 4 ingredients (through onion) in a large bowl; drizzle with 1 1/2 tablespoons oil. Toss. Arrange vegetables on a jelly-roll pan. Bake at 500° for 15 minutes.

      Punch dough down. Sprinkle a lightly floured baking sheet with cornmeal; roll dough out to 15-inch circle on prepared baking sheet. Brush dough with 1 teaspoon oil.

      Spread sauce over dough, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Sprinkle 1/2 cup mozzarella over sauce; top with vegetables. Sprinkle another 1/2 cup mozzarella and red pepper. Dollop with ricotta.

      Slide pizza onto preheated pizza stone. Bake at 500° for 11 minutes or until crust is golden. Sprinkle with basil.

      Servings: 6
      Serving size: 2 slices
      Calories per serving: 347

  • Broccoli Stuffed Peppers
    • Saturday December 10, 2011

      From eatbetteramerica.com

      • 2 large bell peppers, seeded, cut in half lengthwise (see Liz alternative below)
      • 2/3 C. water
      • 1/2 C. uncooked instant brown rice
      • 1 C. chopped fresh broccoli
      • 2 Tbsp. chopped onion
      • 1/2 C. canned red beans, drained, rinsed
      • 1/3 C. chunky-style salsa
      • 1/4 C. shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese (1 oz)
      • 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro


      Making the peppers:

      In an 8- or 9-inch square microwavable dish, place peppers, cut sides down. Cover dish with plastic wrap, folding back one edge or corner 1/4 inch to vent steam. Microwave on High about 4 minutes or until tender.

      Liz alternative: I'm not a big fan of the microwave for cooking vegetables, though I haven't tried the above method, so feel free to if it's easier for you. My go-to method for not-crunchy-but-not-squishy bell peppers is this: Cut tops off peppers and seed. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Place peppers in boiling water for 5 minutes, then drain. Cut in half to continue following their recipe below.)

      Meanwhile, in 1-quart saucepan, heat water to boiling over high heat. Stir in rice, broccoli and onion; reduce heat to low. Cover; simmer about 10 minutes or until water is absorbed. Stir in beans and salsa.

      Spoon hot rice mixture into pepper halves. Place filled sides up in microwavable dish. Sprinkle each pepper half with 1 tablespoon of the cheese. Cover dish with plastic wrap, folding back one edge or corner 1/4 inch to vent steam. Microwave on High about 1 minute or until cheese is melted. Sprinkle with cilantro. Let stand 1 to 2 minutes before serving.

      Servings: 2
      Serving size: 1 whole pepper
      Calories per serving: 250

  • Stovetop Oatmeal
    • Wednesday December 07, 2011

      From jeanieredickeatforlife.blogspot.com, with 1 tiny change from me

      • 1/2 Cup rolled oats
      • 1 Cup water
      • 2 Tbsp. walnuts
      • 2 Tbsp. flax seed meal
      • 1 Tbsp. pure Vermont maple syrup
      • 3 Tbsp. soy milk
      • Fruit of your choice


      Bring the cup of water to a boil, then add the rolled oats. Reduce heat to low and leave for 8 minutes.

      Stir in the milled flax seed, maple syrup and soy milk, then top with nuts and fruit.

      Servings: 1
      Calories per serving: 425

  • Waldorf Salad
    • Monday December 05, 2011
      • 3 C. spinach
      • 1 medium apple (any kind you like)
      • 2 Tbsp. chopped walnuts
      • 2 Tbsp. raisins
      • 3 Tbsp. low-fat or fat-free mayo


      Split the spinach into two portions.

      Cut apple into bite-sized pieces and place in a medium bowl. Add walnuts, raisins and mayo to apple pieces and stir to mix and coat.

      Divide salad topping in half and place over spinach.

      Servings: 2
      Calories per serving: 160

  • Southwestern Three-Bean & Barley Soup
    • Monday December 05, 2011

      From eatingwell.com

      • 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
      • 1 large onion, diced
      • 1 large stalk celery, diced
      • 1 large carrot, diced
      • 9 C. water (if doing slow cooker, use ONLY 2 cups!)
      • 4 C. (32 oz) reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
      • 1/2 C. pearl barley
      • 1/3 C. dried black beans
      • 1/3 C. dried great northern beans
      • 1/3 C. dried kidney beans
      • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
      • 1 tsp. ground cumin
      • 1/2 tsp. dried oregano
      • 3/4 tsp. salt


      Stovetop Method:

      Prep your veggies.

      Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion, celery and carrot and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.

      Add water, broth, barley, black beans, great northern beans, kidney beans, chili powder, cumin and oregano. Bring to a lively simmer over high heat. Reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender, 1 3/4 to 2 1/2 hours (adding more water, 1/2 cup at a time, if necessary or desired). Season with salt.

      Slow Cooker Variations:

      Use 2 cups water (instead of 9 cups) and combine all ingredients in a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker. Cover and cook until the beans are tender, either 4 hours on High or 7-8 hours on Low.

      Serving size: 1 1/3 cups
      Calories per serving: 205 

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