HUMMUS WITH PEPITA TOAST FOR BREAKFAST

toast wth hummus and seeds (2)

1 slice whole grain bread, toasted ( I used Pepperidge Farm Whole Grain Oatmeal bread with 1 1/2 oz whole grains = 1/2 or your daily recommended amount. It also has 4 gm. fiber.)
2 Tbsp roasted garlic hummus
1/2 tsp sunflower kernels
1/2 tsp pepitas

JUST TOAST, SPREAD AND SPRINKLE!

THIS BREAKFAST IS ONLY 200 CALORIES PACKED WITH 25 GM CHO; 7 GM PRO AND 9 GM OF FAT. A NUTTY ALTERNATIVE TO PEANUT BUTTER ON TOAST WHICH WOULD HAVE 100 MORE CALORIES AND NEARLY DOUBLE THE FAT!

PEPITAS ARE a very good source of beta carotene, Omega 3, protein, minerals magnesium and manganese, iron, zinc and copper and vitamin K.

I WAS THINKING MAYBE A FEW RAISINS OR CRAISINS MIGHT BE GOOD ON IT TOO!

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BAKED GREEK CHICKEN

bakedd greek chicken (5)

1 red onion, sliced
1 green pepper, seeded and sliced
1 red pepper, seeded and sliced
2/3 c pitted, sliced Kalamata olives
3 large chicken breasts cut in half
1/2 c hummus
1/2 cup your favorite Greek salad dressing
1 tsp paprika
1 pint cherry or grape tomatoes
Crumbled Feta for topping
Spinach and pita bread for serving

1. Preheat oven to 450 F
2. Lightly coat a 13 X 9″ baking dish with non-stick spray
3. Spread onion, peppers and olives on bottom of baking dish
4. Place chicken breasts on top and spread hummus evenly over each breast
5. Drizzle your favorite Greek salad dressing over all
6. Sprinkle paprika over chicken breasts
7. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Add the tomatoes to the perimeter of the pan and return to oven another 15-20 minutes until chicken is cooked through.
8. Serve on a bed of spinach topped with feta crumbles and a side of whole wheat pita bread halves.

EASY AND DELICIOUS DINNER READY IN ABOUT 45 MINUTES! THE HUMMUS ON TOP OF THE CHICKEN HELPS KEEP THE CHICKEN MOIST.

MY FAVORITE GREEK SALAD DRESSING IS KRAFT GREEK FETA AND OREGANO WHICH CAN BE HARD TO FIND. KENS HAS A GREEK WITH FETA AND OLIVES WHICH LOOKS LIKE IT MAY BE GREAT TOO!

THIS DISH IS GLUTEN FREE BUT ALWAYS CHECK LABELS IF SUPER SENSITIVE IN CASE OF CROSS CONTAMINATION POSSIBILITIES.

CROCK POT STUFFED ACORN SQUASH

Slow-cooker-stuffed-acorn-squash
Ingredients
  • 2 acorn squash
  • 1/3 cup cracker crumb (I like Ritz crackers)
  • 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1/2 cup craisins
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese crumbles
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg or mace
  • 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice or apple juice
Preparation

Cut squash in half; scoop out seeds and membranes then place, cut side up, in slow cooker. Combine remaining ingredients. Spoon mixture evenly into center of the squash halves.

Cover and cook on LOW for 5 to 6 hours, until squash is tender.

GREAT VEGETARIAN DISH OR SIDE DISH FOR GRILLED MEATS/FISH/POULTRY!
Serves 4.

ROASTED SALTED SOY NUTS

LOW SODIUM! HIGH FIBER! AND HIGH PROTEIN!  ALL IN A CONVENIENT SNACK!

I WAS SO EXCITED TO FIND THIS SNACK IN MY LOCAL WALMART!  THEY ARE HIGH IN FAT (8GM/SERVING) BUT ONLY ONE GRAM IS SATURATED – SO KIND OF LIKE PEANUTS.  1/4 CUP PACKS A PUNCH OF 5 GMS OF FIBER  AND 11 GMS OF PROTEIN WITH ONLY 50 MGS OF SODIUM!

I DON’T KNOW WHY IT HAS BEEN SO DIFFICULT TO FIND THESE SNACKS OUTSIDE OF HEALTH FOOD STORES FOR SO LONG.

CASSAULET-STYLE PORK

CASSAULET-STYLE PORK (2)

1  large onion, cut into wedges
1 bag baby carrots
8 stalks celery, sliced
3/4 c dried lentils, rinsed and drained
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 1/2 cups water
1 (28 oz) can petite diced tomatoes
2 # pork loin roast
1 1/2 tsp rosemary, crushed
1 tsp instant beef bouillon
salt and pepper if needed

Place everything in order into the crock pot and cook on LOW 10-12 hours. In the last hour of cooking take out roast and cut into cubes, then return to slow cooker until ready to serve.

MEXICAN STUFFED ACORN SQUASH

stuffed-squash-beef-beans-18

Ingredients
  • 2 medium acorn squash
  • 1/2 pound ground beef (I used 96% lean ground beef)
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion^
  • 1/4 cup chopped green or red bell pepper^
  • 1 can (15 ounces) black beans*, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) your favorite spaghetti sauce
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa (rinse if needed)
  • 1 cup corn kernels (I used frozen, thawed)
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Dash pepper
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro
  • Shredded Cheddar* cheese, for topping

^I used thawed frozen pepper stir fry mix (Birds Eye) to cut prep time

*Rinse and drain beans well as they may have some gluten cross-contamination and Kraft shredded cheeses are all gluten free.

Preparation

Cut squash in half; scoop out seeds and membranes then place, cut side up, in slow cooker.
Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl combine the remaining ingredients except the cheese. Stuff the squash and add a small amount of water (1/4 cup) to bottom of crock pot.  Cook on LOW 4-5 hours until the squash is tender*.  Serve with cheese on top.

*You can also bake in a 350 F oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours – just place squash in a baking dish with a cup of water on the bottom.

A GREAT GLUTEN FREE MEAL WHICH CAN ALSO BE MADE WITHOUT GROUND BEEF FOR A VEGETARIAN TWIST.

Adapted from the Original Recipe http://southernfood.about.com/od/wintersquashrecipes

NO MORE WAITING FOR THE WATER TO BOIL!

SAVE TIME, ENERGY AND WATER COOKING PASTA THAT’S PERFECT WITH THE ADDED BONUS OF A SAUCE STARTER TOO! I must say that mine did NOT turn out perfect – kind of glopped together after it sat a bit. I made this to serve my shrimp scampi recipe over so the sauce was in the shrimp pan and I should have combined some sauce with the pasta right away. LIVE AND LEARN. I will try it again!

The next time you make pasta, instead of waiting for a huge pot of water to boil before you add pasta, consider starting with cold water and a large frying pan to get the pasta cooked perfectly, quickly, and with just enough pasta water left in the pan for a sauce to go with your meal.

Just add the pasta (I always use whole wheat pasta) to the pan.  Pour about a quart and a half of cold water (starting with cold water will keep the pasta from sticking) and turn up the heat. Stir the pasta regularly, but it’ll cook in a fraction of the time required to boil a large volume of water and then cook the pasta in the boiling water.

As a bonus, when you’re finished, you’ll have just enough thick, starchy pasta water left in the pan when you remove the pasta that you can use for a butter and cream sauce or garlic Parmesan sauce. Better yet, add some cheese, butter, and black pepper and use it to make Cacio e Pepe, one of my favorite quick pasta dishes.

SOURCES:

http://www.opposingviews.com/i/social/heres-how-you-perfectly-quickly-cook-pasta-frying-pan-video

http://lifehacker.com/5860015/cook-pasta-with-cold-water-and-a-frying-pan-for-a-quick-dinner-and-an-easy-sauce

AND THANK YOU LORI DINKI FOR SHARING ON FACEBOOK! HAS NIKKI TRIED IT YET?

SO EASY SHRIMP SCAMPI

Easy Shrimp Recipe

Melt a stick of butter in a 13X9 baking dish (I used 1/2 the butter and 1/2 cup of chicken broth to cut the fat)

Slice one lemon and layer it on top of the butter.

Put down fresh shrimp (I used frozen precooked with the tail on)

Sprinkle one pack of dried Italian seasoning (I used Good Seasons packet for Italian dressing)

Put in the oven and bake at 350 F for 15 – 20 minutes.

While the shrimp is baking prepare 8 oz whole wheat pasta and drain.

Serve Shrimp and sauce over the noodles!

SO NICE AND EASY.  I SERVED WITH A FRESH SPINACH SALAD AND DINNER ROLL.

PEPPER JACK LINGUINI CASSEROLE

Pepper Jack Spaghetti Casserole (1)

8 oz Whole Wheat Linguini prepared as directed
1 c sour cream (low-fat if possible)
2 eggs, beaten
2 c Kraft shredded pepper jack cheese
1/4 c Parmesan cheese
1 pkg frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
1 1/3 c French fried onions

Preheat oven to 350 F. Cook linguini.  Meanwhile, in 2 quart casserole dish combine sour cream and eggs.  Stir in prepared linguini, cheeses, spinach and 2/3 c onions.  Cover; bake 30 minutes.  Stir.  Top with remaining onions.  Bake uncovered 5 minutes more.

SERVED WITH A FRESH SALAD!