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Cranberry Orange Muffins

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Good evening friends!

In honor of Teacher Appreciation Week, I made some yummy Cranberry Orange Muffins for the fabulous teachers in my kids life.  I am so very thankful for the teachers who work so hard day in and day out inspiring, motivating, challenging and sparking that desire to learn in our kids.  We have been blessed with so many wonderful teachers over the years.  Some who have become my dear friends and some who simply remain in your heart forever.  Special teachers can truly make a difference in a child’s life.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart to all those teachers who have gone the extra mile for us all for all!

These muffins are not low-fat or healthy in any way, but they are delicious!

Cranberry Orange Muffins

Yield- 24 muffins

Ingredients

Streusel Topping

1/2 cup flour

4 TBL sugar

1 tsp cinnamon

6 TBL butter, cold and diced

Muffins

4 cups flour

2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

2 cups frozen cranberries, chopped

2 eggs

1 cup brown sugar

1 cup white sugar

2 cups buttermilk

2/3 cup canola oil

2 tsp vanilla extract

4 TBL orange zest, fresh is best

Glaze

1 cup powdered sugar

2-3 TBL orange juice

1-2 TBL orange zest

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line muffin tins with liners of your choice.

Make the streusel by combining all the ingredients and cutting in the butter with a pastry blender.

To make the muffin batter, (use a large bowl) toss the flour, baking soda, salt and cranberries together until combined. Set aside.  In another bowl, whisk the eggs, both sugars together until combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, oil, vanilla and zest. Gently combine the wet and dry ingredients. Stir only until combined.

Fill muffins cups 1/2 to 3/4 full. Press streusel evenly onto each muffin.

Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until tops are firm.  Allow muffins to cool.

Assemble the glaze by whisking the powdered sugar, OJ and zest together.  Once muffins are cool, remove them from pan and put on a wire rack. Drizzle the muffins with the glaze.

Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from http://www.sallysbakingaddiction.com

 

 

Thai Chicken Chili

A chilly April Fool’s Day in Chicago calls for a steaming, hearty bowl of Thai Chicken Chili. I am using ground turkey today and firing up the crock pot. This delicious chili will hit the spot after our blustery afternoon track meet!

four sweetie pies

English: Fresh Cilantro (Coriander) Deutsch: V... English: Fresh Cilantro (Coriander) Deutsch: Verkaufsübliches Bund frischer Koriander (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Good afternoon friends,

I made an amazing chili recipe last night that I’d like to share with you. It has so many complex favors coming together, definitely a different spin on the traditional chili. It went over well with almost everyone here! There is a little heat to it, but that could be toned down if you desire. Another great feature is that I whipped it up early in the morning and poured it in the crock pot and let it slow cook all day.  It seems like the days are getting shorter and shorter and we are squeezing in more and more activities, so these crock pot recipes are a huge help to me and hopefully you too.

Hope you enjoy :)

Thai Chicken Chili

Ingredients

1 lb ground chicken (ground turkey could be used too)

2-3…

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Peanut Butter and Banana Baked Oatmeal

Good morning friends,

As we sit and wait for our umpteenth snow storm of the season, may I suggest a recipe that I’ve devised for my family incorporating some of our favorite ingredients? Tomorrows forecasted cold and snowy start might be more bearable with some warm Peanut Butter and Banana Baked Oatmeal, and it can even be made the night before to save time.

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Peanut Butter and Banana Baked Oatmeal

1-2 bananas (ripe, sliced for bottom)

2 cups of old-fashioned oats

1 generous tsp cinnamon

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp vanilla

pinch of sea salt

1 1/2 cups unsweetened coconut milk (half the calories of skim) but you can use any type of milk desired

1/3 cup of peanut butter, softened in microwave, plus additional for serving

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 egg whites (I keep the liquid ones on hand for things like this when Im trying to do low-fat baking)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2. Spray deep pie dish with non-stick spray

3. Slice and layer the bananas on the bottom of the dish

4. Mix the rest of  the ingredients together and place in pie dish.

5. At this point you can refrigerate overnight or bake immediately for about 30-35 minutes or until set, but not over baked or it will be dry.

6. Serve with warm milk of your choice, sliced bananas if desired and drizzle with a bit of additional peanut butter (non-negotiable ;).

* A couple of side notes-if prepared as above, this recipe has 5 WW PointsPlus  (when the dish is cut into 8 servings and not including how much peanut butter you add to the top ;). Sometimes I make this recipe with 1 1/2 times the ingredients to make it a bit  thicker, this would however increase the points value.

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Enjoy! My family gobbles this up and requests I make it often :)

Jumpin’ Jambalaya!

Happy Fat Tuesday 2014! I made a couple updates to the low-fat Jambalaya. Enjoy :)

four sweetie pies

Hello foodie friends and Happy Fat Tuesday!

We’ve had our fill of Paczki‘s (pronounced poonchkis)! What is a Paczki’s you ask?!?!  A delicious Polish inspired donut-type treat that is either jelly or cream filled, they are extremely popular tradition in the Chicagoland area.   My kids have really come to look forward to this tradition and came home from school searching for the Paczki’s!

For the past few years I’ve been making Jambalaya for dinner on Fat Tuesday in honor of  the Mardi Gras festivities. Tonight I hit the jackpot with a recipe we all really enjoyed! Even Allison, who eats little meat, was able to pick around the sausage and enjoyed the dinner. I was able to make the recipe a little healthier with a few modifications. I hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Jumpin’ Jambalaya (low fat)

Ingredients

24 shrimp (i bought already cooked from the seafood counter, took off the tails and cut…

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Mexican-Inspired Chicken Chili (crock pot)

Good afternoon friends!

Happy New year! I hope everyone is staying warm on this frigid winter day. My kids feel as if  they’ve hit the jackpot with winter break being extended by 2 days due to extreme cold! I’ve been making soup non-stop lately and one of my favorites is this mexican chili that I’ve more or less made up by experimentation. I slow cook it all day in the crock pot, super simple and delicious! It’s rather healthy too.  I will add some pictures once I get my new Mac up and running!

Mexican-Inspired Chicken Chili

Ingredients

3 boneless, skinless breasts

1 can great northern or cannellini beans

1 can of white corn or white hominy

6 cups of chicken broth

1 can, the larger one, of chopped green chilies

1 jar of tomatillo salsa (green) or red salsa

Chopped poblano peppers, if available ( I use them if I’ve frozen them from my summer veggie share)

1 cup chopped onions

1-2 heaping tablespoons of fajita seasoning (I use “Family Style Fajita Seasoning” from my new favorite, local spice shop in Libertyville, IL-www.savoryspiceshop.com , but any will do)

Toppings

sour cream or Greek yogurt

tortilla chips

shredded cheese

cilantro

Directions

Add chicken to crock pot, even frozen is perfectly fine! Add all remaining ingredients and cook on low for 6-8 hours. At the end, I remove the chicken breasts and shred with a fork and return to the pot. Stir and serve with fresh cilantro, sour cream or fat-free Greek yogurt is a great alternative, and tortilla chips. I often crumble a few Crunchmaster White Cheddar Crackers on mine as another healthy alternative.

I love soup all winter long and I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Keep warm :)

 

 

Thai Chicken Chili

English: Fresh Cilantro (Coriander) Deutsch: V...

English: Fresh Cilantro (Coriander) Deutsch: Verkaufsübliches Bund frischer Koriander (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Good afternoon friends,

I made an amazing chili recipe last night that I’d like to share with you. It has so many complex favors coming together, definitely a different spin on the traditional chili. It went over well with almost everyone here! There is a little heat to it, but that could be toned down if you desire. Another great feature is that I whipped it up early in the morning and poured it in the crock pot and let it slow cook all day.  It seems like the days are getting shorter and shorter and we are squeezing in more and more activities, so these crock pot recipes are a huge help to me and hopefully you too.

Hope you enjoy :)

Thai Chicken Chili

Ingredients

1 lb ground chicken (ground turkey could be used too)

2-3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced

1-2 TBL fresh ginger, peeled and minced or 1 TBL ground ginger

1 TBL cumin

1 TBL chili powder or chipotle powder

1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 cup chopped leeks (i had leeks on hand but any onion could work)

2 cups shredded carrots

1 red pepper, cut into chunks

2 poblano peppers, roasted, peeled and chopped

1/3 cup soy sauce

2 cups hot & spicy V8 juice

1 28 ox can of chopped tomatoes in their juice

1 15 ounce can of black beans

3 TBL peanut butter (I used our favorite Skippy Natural, but you could use anything, even crunchy would be good)

2 cups of cilantro, rinsed and chopped (for me this ingredient is non-negotiable and really makes a huge difference in taste :)

plain, fat-free greek yogurt

Directions

In a large pot, brown the ground chicken with the garlic and ginger. Drain if necessary.

Stir in the cumin, chili powder,  and red pepper flakes. Next, add the remaining ingredients, except the the peanut butter, cilantro and yogurt) Mix and bring to a boil.

Pour into your crock pot and cook on low for a few hours. When ready to serve, stir the peanut butter and cilantro.

Spoon in to bowls and serve with a dollop of greek yogurt and a couple of sprigs on cilantro.

Enjoy :)

Recipe adapted from The Today Show http://www.today.com/

Green Chile Pork Posole

Good morning friends!

Sorry, it’s been too long since I posted a recipe, but I’ve been getting back into the school routine!  Lately,  I’ve been reaching for my tried and true friend, the crock pot.  So many times in the last month it’s been a real dinner saver! Last nights Green Chile Pork Posole was so yummy and quick and what a wonderful greeting to come home to after a late afternoon soccer game.  What is a “posole” you ask?  It’s simply a Mexican-style soup, traditionally made with pork and hominy.   It does have a little “kick” to it…but the condiments I used to top it can mellow it out a bit.  Give this one a try, I think you’ll really like it.

Green Chile Pork Posole

Ingredients

1 15 ou can of hominy (corn that has had the hull and germ removed, found in canned veggie aisle)

1 16 ou jar of salsa verde

2-3 cups of chicken broth

2 4 ou cans of diced green chilies

1 cup chopped onion

1 TBL cumin

4 cloves of minced garlic

1 tsp oregano

1/4 tsp red pepper

1-2 pounds of pork tenderloin, diced into bite size pieces

Toppings

chopped avocado, low-fat cheese, fat-free plain greek yogurt, crumbled tortilla chips

Instructions

1. Add all ingredients, except the toppings, to your crock pot and stir. Cook on low all day. (6-8 hours)

2. That’s it! It’s really that simple :)

3. Serve with the yummy toppings. Try the plain, fat-free greek yogurt in place of sour cream. It’s tastes the same and is better for you!

Enjoy your dinner :)

od & Fresh 050

 

* Recipe adapted from Good & Fresh Magazine

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