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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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Quick and Easy Asparagus Soup

Quick and Easy Asparagus Soup

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Happy Memorial Day weekend my friends!

A “Quick and Easy Asparagus Soup” recipe to use up the abundance of asparagus from my CSA this week. This recipe is pretty basic, but could be jazzed up with sautéed mushrooms, bits of ham or bacon or some Parmesan crisps.

Ingredients

2 pounds of asparagus, chopped into bite-size pieces

1 TBL light canola oil spread

1 sweet yellow onion, diced

3 cloves of fresh garlic, minced

1/2 cup of dry white wine

3 cups of fat-free chicken broth

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp Better Than Bouillon chicken base (a great product for jazzing up soup recipes)

1/4 cup low-fat cream cheese

Instructions

1. In a medium-sized soup pot, melt the canola spread and add the onion and garlic. Saute until onion is tender about 5 minutes. Stirring occasionally.

2. Add white wine and cook until mostly evaporated.

3. Add chopped asparagus and the chicken broth. Season with salt (and pepper if you’re a fan) and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and cook for about 20 minutes or until asparagus is tender.

4. Add cream cheese.

5. Using an immersion blender, puree until desired thickness. I tend to like mine not completely liquefied. You can also wait until the soup is cooled a bit and process in your regular blender.

6. Enjoy! A generous 1 cup serving is 4 WW PointsPlus

Happy Spring cooking :)

* Recipe adapted from http://www.skinnychef.com

Kyle’s Chocolate Chip Caramel Brownies

Kyle’s Chocolate Chip Caramel Brownies

028Good morning friends,

My thoughts and prayers go out to everyone affected by the Boston Marathon tragedy yesterday. I am very relieved that everyone I knew there is safe. My deepest sympathies to everyone involved; victims, participants, first responders and family members. May God grant us all peace.

I thought it a good time to think about the positive and count my many blessings. Once of them is my son, Kyle. He is thirteen and loves to cook and bake, which of course warms my heart and I am so thankful that we share this love of baking. I think he will make some woman very happy someday with his skills in the kitchen :)

On Sunday, Kyle came to me and said he wanted to take on a baking project… he wanted to make something that neither one of has made before. I said, “great, go for it!” He decided to look through Pinterest and the boards I have created because often times I sit with him and point out things that I’d like to try some day.  Being the chocolate lover he is I had an idea the direction he was going :) I reminded him to check his ingredients to make sure we had everything on hand, nothing more frustrating than beginning a recipe only to find out that you’re missing an ingredient or two.  I stood by for consultation, but he didn’t really need that much :)

He chose a chocolate caramel brownie recipe, and yes, he made the brownies from scratch which is something that I rarely do!

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Kyle’s Chocolate Chip Caramel Brownies

Ingredients

For the brownies:

2 sticks of unsalted butter

1 12 ounce package of dark chocolate chips

1 1/2 cups of white sugar

4 eggs

1 TBL vanilla extract

1 1/4 cup flour

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup dark chocolate chips

For the caramel filling

1 package of Kraft caramel bits (tiny little balls found in baking aisle which I love for convenience!)

1/4 cup of vanilla-flavored coffee creamer (because who really has heavy cream on hand all the time?!)

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees

2. Line a 9×13 pan with parchment paper. Spray pan and on top of parchment with cooking spray.

3. Slowly melt 12 ounces of chocolate chips in a glass bowl at 50% power in 1 minute intervals until chocolate is smooth and melted.  Stir between each interval so as to not overcook.

4. Wisk in sugar, eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour and salt until combined.

5. Spread half of brownie batter in pan and bake for 15-18 minutes.

6. Cool brownies

7. Combine caramels and creamer in another glass bowl and microwave at a reduced power level, until melted, do in 30-45 second intervals, stirring in between.

8. Spread the caramel mixture over the cooled brownies

9. Using 2 spoons, place remaining brownie dough in piles over caramel mixture.

10. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top.

11. Bake for an additional 20 minutes or until set and slightly pulling away from the sides of pan.

12. Cool on a rack and then, cool in refrigerate for a couple hours until fully set and firm.

13. Lift the entire slab from the pan with the parchment paper (this step is when the parchment paper comes in very handy!)

14. Peel back parchment and slice into squares

15. Enjoy your magical creation :)

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

Jumpin’ Jambalaya!

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 in half)

1 rotisserie chicken ( I saved time here too and bought one at the deli-simply cut the breast meat only into bite-size pieces)

2 cups of turkey sausage or kielbasa (like an Eckerich brand), sliced

3/4-1 TBL Creole seasoning ( I used Cajun’s Choice)

1/2 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped green pepper

1/2 cup chopped red pepper

1/3 cup chopped celery

1 cup okra, chopped (I used frozen)

2 TBL chopped garlic

1 can diced tomatoes, drained

3 bay leaves

1 cup brown rice (raw)

3 cups of chicken broth

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp hot sauce (I used Franks Hot Sauce)

Directions

In a bowl, toss the shrimp and chicken with the creole seasoning. In a large saute pan, sprayed with olive oil spray, saute the peppers, celery,and onions. Saute about 3-4 minutes or until tender. Add garlic, drained tomatoes, bay leaves, Worcestershire and hot sauce. Stir in raw rice and slowly add the chicken broth. Reduce heat to medium and cook with a lid until the rice absorbs the liquid, stirring occasionally for about 15-20 minutes. Add the meat (chicken, shrimp, and sausage) and stir. Cook until the meat is cooked through (if you have used meats that are already cooked as I did, this wont take long) If desired, season with addition creole seasoning depending on your “heat” tolerance.

Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from www.foodnetwork.com

Fat Tuesday

Fat Tuesday (Photo credit: bitzcelt)

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