Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Feta and Beet Frittata

Frittatas are a wonderful, filling meal, usually finished in an oven.  But, I don't have time for that. And frankly, just baking them seems to work just fine.

This savory, cheesy and slightly sweet tata is good packed, held together by a creamy egg base.  Not the traditional thick and creamy because, well, I like a bit more stuffings and a bit less eggs. So, it's probably closer to an egg casserole.  I don't care.

2 eggs
1 Tbsp. plain, 0% fat Greek yogurt
1/4 cup chopped green onion, loose not packed
3 oz. sliced beets
1/4 cup fat free feta
2 slices reduced sodium, reduced fat bacon
salt & pepper to taste

  1. I keep think sliced beets in the freezer.  I thaw them, and microwave for 1 minute. You can cut your own up right before.
  2. Spray down 2 ramekins or one small casserole dish with coconut oil.
  3. In a pan, almost completely cook your bacon.  I snip mine up into small pieces first.
  4. Combine egg and yogurt and hit with a beater until smooth and frothy.  
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste. I used a bit of garlic salt and ground black. Don't go crazy with the salt-remember there's bacon and feta in this dish.
  6. Layer beets on bottom.  Sprinkle with green onions, followed by feta, and bacon.  
  7. Pour egg mixture over top.
  8. Bake at 350F for about 30 minutes, checking frequently.  Egg should be just set, not golden like so many pictures show. Edges can be golden, but if top is, the middle is generally overcooked. It will get spongy.

266 Calories for whole dish

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Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Single Cinnamon Rolls

What witchcraft is this?

I've seen a lot of recipes out there for a 2 ingredient pizza dough, and thought hmm, I should give this a try. I'm using the Impatient Foodie's recipe, but going above and beyond it.

So clearly, it needed to be made into a cinnamon roll.

3 Tbsp. Plain, nonfat, Greek Yogurt
3 Tbsp. and some for kneading, self-rising flour
1/2 Tbsp. butter, melted
3 tsp. cinnamon sugar mix
  1. Combine yogurt and flour.  Scrape off onto floured surface and knead, adding flour as needed, until a touchable dough, slightly elastic, forms.
  2. Roll or pat out. You want it long, and only as wide as you would like it high.  I achieve this by rolling it out, and then using a pizza cutter lengthwise.  I then overlay the two pointed end back into a square.
  3. Baste one side with melted butter.  
  4. Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.  
  5. Carefully roll.
  6. Place in middle of greased ramekin.
  7. Bake at 350F for about  15 min, until golden. I use toaster oven set to 250F.
  8. Let cool to touch, and enjoy.
120 calories

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Pomegranate Tangerine Shortbreads: Happy P4A!

It's Project for Awesome weekend and I've been watching the stream for several hours.  As of right now, the Nerdfighter and YouTube community have raised $1.4 million USD in 44 hours for charity, including Save the Children and the UNHRC, both excellent, high-rated charities helping refugees, especially children, world wide.

Did you know about half of all refugees are chidlren.  Yeah, not terrorists-children. Go ahead, take some time to google it.  I encourage it.

Back?  Awesome.

I decided I needed celebratory sweets.  I made them little hearts, which is our symbol. The YouTube symbol with a heart instead of play triangle.

By the time this posts, the P4A will be over, but you can CONTINUE to donate to charity by buying up the last of the perks HERE!

1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup powdered sugar and then some.
1/2 tangerine
1/4 pomegranate
1 cup flour

  1. In medium bowl, combine softened butter, sugar, and 1/2 tangerine's juice and 1/2 the tangerine's zest.  Cream together.  
  2. Add the 1/4 pomegranate fruit, then flour.
  3. Empty out on to table or board. 
  4. Using powdered sugar like flour, knead until comes together.  
  5. If a little soft, you can stick it in the fridge for a bit.
  6. Roll out to about 1/4 inch thick, and cut.
  7. Bake on parchment, 350F for about 8-12 min until lightly golden on edges.

About 100 calories a cookie.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

The Slutty Brownie

There are a lot of recipes going around for slutty brownies, which use chocolate chip cookie mix, oreos, and brownie mix.  My tutors asked for them, and I stared at them in horror for a solid minute, but the kids get what the kids want.

I've been won over, but I won't be making these again for a long, long time.  I ate one and heard Wilfred Brimley whisper my name.


I used a variation of  InspiredTaste.net's Fudgey Brownies as my base. There were come complaints about thickness on the website, which was what I wanted.  My brownies, as you may know, are zucchini brownies, and weren't going to work for this crime against humanity.

5 Tbsp. salted butter, melted
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup heaping Hershey's baking cocoa
1 tsp. vanilla bean paste
2 large eggs
1/2 cup all-purpose flour

  1. Cream everything but the flour together.  
  2. Add in the flour last and stir until smooth.


1 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 heaping cups all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking soda
6 Tbsp. salted butter, melted but not all the way
6 Tbsp. unsalted butter, same
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsp. vanilla bean paste

  1. Cream together butter, soda, sugar, and vanilla.  
  2. Once completely combined, add egg and yolk, then flour.  
  3. Flour comes together...weird. Use hands at end, and to add chips.

One package of double-stuffed Oreos

  1. Line 2 dozen rows of your cupcake pans.
  2. Make a cake pop sized ball of the cookie.  
  3. Press into cupcake liners.
  4. Press oreo into each cookie nest.
  5. Cover with brownie batter.
  6. Bake 340F for 18-25 minutes, depending on your oven.  Use the toothpick test on the sides to make sure brownie comes out clean, and they'll be done.
  7. you should have about 10 cookies worth of cookie dough left.  I always bake them afterwards, but you can also freeze it in individual pucks.  This recipe works really well for that.

330 calories each slutty brownie.

151 calories each chocolate chip cookie.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Creamy Baby Arugula & Mizuna Pesto

One of the last set of greens I got from my farm share was another big bunch of mizuna, which I adore in salads, but it isn't my favorite weather for salads.  It started to wilt this week and I knew I had to act quickly.

Pesto it was.

The great thing about homemade pestos are that they are always way less caloric than the ones in the store. For example, 2 Tbsp. of my favorite store bought pesto is 195 calories.  2 Tbsp. of mine is about 33.

Seen here with my Flour Tortillas, toasted for chips.

2 oz. baby arugula
1 oz. mizuna, leaves only
1/2 cup walnuts, unsalted, chopped
1 cup Parmesean, shredded
6 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
Juice of 1/2 lemon
3 large cloves garlic, smashed and chopped

Note-I really like garlic.  If you prefer a more subtle taste, start with 1, and add the others as needed.

  1. Puree it all in your food processor for a quicker mix.  The blender is doable-as this was made in it, but it takes forever.

Makes 2 cups.  2 Tbsp. servings at 33 calories a serving.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Savory Acorn Squash Fritters

I spent most of my Tuesday this week (garbage night) going through the last of my farm share and prepping it for freezing.  Right when I thought I had everything done, I found another small acorn squash hiding out.  I figured I might as well cook it for something this week.

These savory-sweet gems were the result of me really wanting latkes, even though I don't keep potatoes in the house. I had a bit of shaved parm left in the fridge that needed to be used up, and I have a lot of mizuna.

4 oz. acorn squash, pre-cooked, mashed
1 oz. Parmesan, shaved or grated
1 cup mizuna
1 egg
1/2 Tbsp. minced garlic (less if you don't like strong flavors)
1 Tbsp. Greek Yogurt, plain, 0% fat
Black pepper to taste
  1. In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup mizuna, the squash, parm, egg, garlic, and some black pepper. Beat well.
  2. Heat your skillet and either spray it or butter it.
  3. Once skillet is heated, drop 4 fritters using spoon.  Flatted out as much as you dare.  Because we're using a mashed squash, it's a little juicy and we'll want them to dry out a bit.
  4. While those cook, arrange the rest of your mizuna on a plate.
  5. Flip when you can safely do so without them falling apart.  Then continue to cook, flipping, until browned with some light char marks.
  6. Serve immediately over greens with Greek yogurt.
286 calories.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Sweet & Savory Breakfast Squash Skillet

Brrrrr.  It's chilly today and I'm cold inside and out. I wanted something warm this morning that would also clear my head. This sweet and savory skillet was a wonderful addition to my collection.

I keep heirloom pears from my father's tree and squash chopped and stores in the fridge and freezer for a quick grab.  All of my squash is about half pre-cooked.  I find it cooks quicker and keeps flavor better this way when I freeze it.

1 oz. onion, chopped
3 oz. butternut, chopped
3 oz. pear
1-2 tsp. bacon fat, just enough to keep it from sticking
cayenne and hickory salt to taste
1 egg

  1. Heat fat.  Add in onion and squash.  
  2. When smaller squash pieces start to become tender, add in pears and cayenne to taste.  I use about 1/8 a tsp, but I like spicy. 
  3. When pears start to become tender, fry your egg how you like it on the other side of the pan. I like mine over easy, just barely.
  4. Serve as is, or pop that egg and make a mess, which is how I prefer it.

244 calories.

Friday, November 27, 2015

Lazy Turkey Stock/Broth Hybrid

It's the day after Thanksgiving in the US, and all through the house, the delicious smell of cooking broth permeates. I absolutely love feast days, because they leave behind animal carcasses which become tasty broths and stocks for me to freeze and enjoy later. Added bonus, I'm cutting down on waste.

This is super, super simple to do, and a great thing to toss on if you're going to be home anyway.  I'm hiding from the Black Friday masses today, grading papers and being a bum.

This is also a great way to use up things like ugly veggies and the bits and pieces everyone doesn't know how to use up.  Honestly, any veggies can go in, but these are the ones I prefer to use. I freeze it all in baggies I mark for stock. Some I keep in the fridge to be dried and ground into a veggies powder I use in skillets for flavor and nutrition.

1 turkey carcass, dismembered.
1 medium yellow onion, peeled, ends chopped off, quartered
2 oz. celery leaf
9 oz. carrot, chopped (or 2-3 handfuls of clean peels)
6 oz. fennel, chopped stem, bulb, frond
5 bay leaves
1 small bulb of garlic, peeled and crushed
1/2 Tbsp. iodized salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
10-12 cups water

  1. Place turkey carcass in your large crockpot.
  2. Throw in veggies and seasoning.
  3. Submerge all in water.  
  4. Cook on high for 6 hours, and then low until vegetables are colorless, translucent, and meat is cooked off the bones completely. Should be a nice fat slick on the top.
  5. Convert a colander to a sieve with either flour sack or cheese cloth.  
  6. Hold over a big bowl and slowly ladle through stock, then pour in the rest once it's more handle-able.
  7. Cool until touchable.  Fill clean, glass jars to halfway to freeze, or completely cool and use plastic.
  8. Thaw in fridge one day before using.  It will be somewhat gelatinous and should be once cooled.
  9. Then you can just toss in whatever you want and make soup as needed!  I generally keep some chopped up, precooked and frozen veggies and meats in pre-made soup baggies in the freezer for a quick meal.

About 30 calories a cup. Makes about 3 spaghetti jars worth.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Ruby Roots and Bacon Skillet

One of my favorite things about cooking with beets is how they color everything lighter beautiful shades of monochromatic ruby. Not to mention how it can be sweet and savory at the same time.

This super simple skillet it's a showstopper for the eyes and pie hole. 

3 oz. celeriac, diced small
3 oz. radish, sliced about 1/6 an inch
3 oz. Beet, sliced about 1/6 an inch
One small red onion, 2 oz., quartered
2 cups baby spinach
2 slices thick cut bacon
Garlic salt
Black pepper

  1. I use my mandolin for slicing. Quick and easy.  For beets, when I buy them I always leave behind a bit of stem so I can use that as my grip rather than the pokey thing, which I find leaves behind a lot of waste.  What waste I do have is wash, dried, dehydrated and ground into a veggie additive I often cook with for a bit more flavor.
  2. Fry up your bacon until just done.  You want it a little on the chewy side. Set aside to drain. 
  3. Leave behind about 2tsp. fat.  Drain rest to store.
  4. Add in all roots. 
  5. Saute until radish soft and onion mostly translucent. 
  6. Add spinach, bacon, and seasonings. Just wilt and serve.

Approx. 350 calories for whole skillet. Easily serves 2 as a side.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Celeriac Root Skillet

Something happened this weekend, and now I have a ton of views.  I'm hoping it's not all bots, and that some people want some tasty, low cal idea.  If it's bots, well, just save me a nice place in your warm, people zoo when you overthrow the world.

I've gotten 2 big bulbs of celeriac root in my farm share to end the season, and having cooked with it, I had no idea what would happen. I did some online searching, came up with less than I wanted in information, and decided to just chop it up and add it to a skillet.

4 oz celeriac, peeled and diced medium
1/2 oz. onion, chopped
3 oz beet, sliced thinly
3 oz. red cabbage, chopped
2 slices bacon, applewood Archer Farms thick

  1. In a pan fry the bacon till almost done and remove to drain.
  2. Add in everything to the bacon fat but cabbage and cook until onions start to brown, then add cabbage.  
  3. Cook until onions start to go translucent and add seasoning if you like.  
  4. Then re-add bacon in chunks.  
  5. Heat through and serve.

About 375 calories for the skillet.  Can serve 2, but this was my breakfast.

The celeriac has a hint of celery, and a texture between potato and turnip.  It's a little bitter around the edges, but pairs nicely with the sweet of the beet and salty of the bacon.

My veggies seasoning is literally just the off bits and eds of my veggies and the un-pretty veggies dried and pulverized.  Everything from beets to lettuce.

Friday, November 13, 2015

Semi-Homemade Chai Concentrate

Super easy, super quick, and greatly reduces your chai calories.

1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
5 chai tea teabags I'm using celestial seasons sweet thai coconut

  1. Boil water and make your tea in the saucepan.  All 5 teabags in, and squish them around to jump start the process, being careful not to break the tea bags.  
  2. Let sit until water completely cools.
  3. Remove tea bags, squeezing all that goodness back into the pan.
  4. Stir sugar in over low heat.  
  5. Once dissolved, bring to a boil for 3 minutes.  Then store in unopened glass jar until cool. 
  6. Cap and keep refrigerated.  Good for several weeks.

Calories vary by the amount you use, your sugar, etc.  I like 2-3 Tbsp for a coffee mug's worth of milk. 3 puts you around 57 calories. 2 around 40. Plus milk choice.

To prepare, just add to milk and heat.

Strawberry Papaya & Apple Fruit Leathers

Now that the weather is cooler and dryer, I'm playing with my Dehydro more. I'm super sad today, because my babier sister and nephew hit the road for the big move to Idaho tonight, so I'm in the middle of baking out my feelings.

Tomorrow is also my last farm share box of the season, so I'm trying to clear out a bit of fridge space.  Finally, I'm craving sweets now that the weather has turned, so I need something low cal and delicious to confuse my brain with, and fruit leathers are pretty good for that.

16 oz. fresh strawberry
1 small, fresh, ripe papaya
1 small granny smith apple, cored

  1. Cut the greens from your strawberry, chop.
  2. Cut your papaya in quarters, remove seeds, scoop out of skin. I'm using the smaller Caiman Golden Papaya today.
  3. Core apple and dice.
  4. In blender or food processor, puree papaya.  
  5. Add strawberries a bit at a time.  
  6. Then the same with the apple until smooth, slimy puree forms.  
  7. The papaya makes a nice base with some sweetness, and the apple provides the pectin. The taste should be mostly strawberry.
  8. Oil 2 fruit leather sheets with coconut oil.
  9. In my Presto Dehydro, it takes about 8 hours. Until only slightly tacky to touch. Set for 7, and then check every 30 min after.
  10. Roll pieces in wax paper and twist to store.  This will also make them less hard.

Makes 8 roll ups for 35 calories each.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Tortilla Pizza with Beets, Aged Feta, Applewood Bacon and Rosemary

I love beets, but I'm sick of them just roasted or hashed or pureed, etc.  I've had a lot of beets this year thanks to my farm share. So, I spent my morning on pintrest after a banana pancake catastrophe (yuck, no, one banana and one egg do not make pancakes, they make banana eggcakes) used up a ton of my calories for nothing. I needed something low cal, filling, and delicious to make up for it.

I see a lot of galettes with beets and feta, and while a crusty, buttery dough wasn't going to do it (this time), I've made enough tortilla pizzas in my life to know it should work. And oh boy, did it.  This is another recipe going into my BEST OF EVERYTHING file.

2 tortillas (taco sized)
1 small beet, about 1.5 oz.
2 Tbsp. feta, aged, fat free
1 tsp. rosemary
1 slice thick cut, applewood bacon.

  1. Preheat your oven to 350F.  If using the convection/toaster, try 300.
  2. While the oven preheats, chop up your slice of bacon and fry it up until it's just under done. I'm using the Archer Farms brand for this batch. Drain and set aside.
  3. Thin slice your beet, skin on, about 1/8 to 1/4 an inch, using a mandolin. Or just as thin as you can by hand.
  4. On a nonstick cookie sheet, layer your torillas with one layer of beet, half the bacon on each, 1 Tbsp. feta each, and then a sprinkle of rosemary.
  5. I age my feta by buying crumbled, no brine, removing some and keeping it in a separate container in the fridge until it starts to yellow.  This makes it more pungent and stinky, but not too much so. Just enough for some flavor.
  6. Bake until tortilla and feta are golden, about 10-15 min.

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Sunday, November 8, 2015

Spicy OctoberFest Collard Kraut

I'm an UnTappd fiend.  I love my craft brews, especially porters and stouts. This time of year though, all of the pumpkin stuff is out, and I have to try it. Peer pressure you know.

But I rarely loooove it, and since it has spices or some nonsense in it, it's not usually a good choice for a beer bread.  But I save it for cooking.

I find sucky pumpkin ales make a really great collard kraut that freezes well, is full of flavor and tasty. Also, if you're doing seafood, like shrimp or a boil, hit it with the sucky pumpkin ale. You're welcome in advance.

I don't have a picture yet (because I completely gobbled up everything), but this looks pretty much the same as my original variation of the collard kraut.

10 oz. Post Road Pumpkin Ale
10 oz (or a medium mixing bowl full) thinly sliced, de-stemmed collard
1 yellow union, diced
1 tsp. iodized salt
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 Tbsp. red pepper flakes
1 cup champagne vinegar
1 cup water

  1. In your large sauce pot, combine bee and half the vinegar. 
  2. Toss in the onion and allow to cook while you slice your collard.
  3. Toss in collard and rest of the ingredients.  Cook uncovered until collard is tender to bite.
  4. Drain in a colander and allow to cool.  
  5. Once cool, package in 1/2 cup servings, and freeze for storage or keep in fridge up to one week.

9 servings of 1/2 cup/ 49 calories each

Friday, November 6, 2015

Beet Chips with Himalayan Salt

I love beet chips.  I'm a great friend to have if you prefer the sweet potato chips in the Terra beet mic.  I just want the beets.  But since they're made with oils they have a bit more calories than I like.  I want to see if I can make something that's 1) easy and 2) satisfying despite being lower cal. So, I decided it's time to give this dehydrator chip thing a go.

I used about 8 oz. of beets, small, and raw so that's about 100 calories for the whole batch. They're not as amazing as the fried in fat variety, but I sat down and ate most of them, so... yeah.  I won't be making them again though.  Nearly 10 hours for two snack bags just isn't enough.

  1. First, put on gloves.  Seriously, you're going to be red-handed if you don't.
  2. Clean your beets well. Leave the skin, but remove any blemishes. Slice off the rootie end, and leave the stem end. Then you can use the stem instead of he pokey mandolin handler. I save the rootie bits in a bag in my freezer, and once a month I thaw it, dehydrate them as well, and grind them into a powder I toss into my skillets and stews for extra flavor and nutrition.
  3. Using a mandolin, slice your beets as thin as you can gets them-mine were between 1/8 and 1/4 inch. Layer them, single, not touching, on your dehydrator racks.  
  4. Holding the rack over the sink, sprinkle with fine, but coarse, Himalayan salt. Use less salt than you want to, by half. Remember, dehydrate means shrink, but the salt doesn't!
  5. Place into dehydrator.
  6. My dehydrator is a one temp serves all Presto Dehydro 6300 model at 600 watts. Basically, this is a dehydrator for dummies.  No playing with the temp, just watch the time and check on your items. If yours is mine, walk away for 8 hours, and then check on it every 30 minutes, until there is no chew left in the pieces and they're just crisp.
  7. Cool, and store.

2 trays makes one formerly 4 oz. serving at 50 calories.
Makes 2 servings.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Beet, Butternut, and Bacon Skillet with Dilly Greek Yogurt Sauce

I was starring at a pin last night that involved thin cut squash and beets and feta and I was thinking it was far too complicated, but I could do this or that.

So I did.

If you don't love dill, you can leave it out.  Use straight up plain Greek yogurt though.  In my opinion, the dill and yogurt's savory sourness was enough to balance the sweetness of the squash and beets.

3 slices low sodium, lower fat bacon
8 oz. beets, chopped fine
8 oz. squash, partially cooked and scooped out
2 oz. onion

2 Tbsp. fresh dill
1-6 oz. Plain Greek Yogurt

  1. Cook bacon, and set aside to drain.  Drain most of the fat from your pan and store in the fridge for cooking later.  
  2. Toss in beets and onions and cook for 5 minutes before adding partially cooked squash.  Because this is a mix mashed in the scooping process, I recommend using a turner/spatula rather than a spoon.
  3. While food cooks, combine dill and yogurt in your blender or processor and mince until well integrated and slightly green.  In a blender, you'll have to scrape the sides down often, but it will work. Scrape out and it's ready to serve.
  4. Once beets and squash hash start to brown, re-add bacon in the mix.  
  5. Heat through and serve with about 2 Tbsp. of the Silly Greek yogurt sauce.  I kept mine on the side to add as I liked.

300 calories

I also suggest cutting the serving in half, dropping the yogurt and adding maple for a sweet treat. Mmmm.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Brussels, Celery and Sausage Skillet

Celery is strong flavored and the leaves even more so.  They're often tossed, but like most kitchen greens, thy're completely edible. Maintain the root, and you can even grow more. But, if you undercook them, they can be bitter, so make sure they are thoroughly wilted.

In general, I try to stay under an ounce of leaves because they are very pungent. However, celery is super low calorie for its weight, which makes it great for dieters. 2 ounces is about 9 calories. And hanks to m farm share, I have a lot of it.

1 3oz. chicken, feta and spinach sausage link
4 oz. brussels
1 oz. chopped celery
1 oz. celery leaves
1/2 tsp. garlic powder

  1. In your large skillet, fry up your sausage.  Just before it's done, remove and slice.
  2. Return to the pan with celery stem, brussels, and garlic.  
  3. Cook medium high until browning begins.
  4. Add celery leaf and 1/4 cup water.  Cook until water is gone and leaves are tender.

203 calories

Monday, November 2, 2015

Simple Chicken Sausage Skillet with Brussels and Turnips

Skillet meals are a single person's godsend.  They're tasty, quick, easy, and often low cal. The next few weeks are going to be super busy, so I plan to be making quite a few of them.

Brussels sprouts, on the other hand, are one of those things you either loathe or love. However I think if you love cabbage and hate brussels, you need to rethink your cooking methods.

I'm not talking about that traditional bowl of whole slimy brussels.  Thank goodness.  I used to think that's all they were, but I'm overjoyed to find I'm wrong. Cooked right, they're crisp, cabbagie, and delicious.

4 oz. raw brussel sprouts, cleaned and quartered
4 oz turnip, cleaned and thinly sliced
3 oz. chicken feta & spinach sausage.
Black pepper to taste

That's it!

I usually do a meal like this when I'm prepping.   Want to cook up a package of sausage for some quick meals this week, so first, in my large skillet, I'm going to brown them up good, and remove them all.  I'm going to chops just one up and set it aside, because each like of the Wegman's brand is 3 oz.  I hear it's comparable to the Trader Joe's brand.

  1. While the sausages cool, toss a handful of water in the skillet to make all of that sausagie goodness come free, and toss in your sprouts and turnips.  
  2. Saute until starting to brown, reintroduce the sliced sausage, and cook until heated through and sausage is browned.

Can serve one as a lunch at 221 calories, or 2 as a side at 110.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Glazed Lemonies

This recipe has been on my pintrest forever for Glazed Lemon Brownies, but I knew I could, well, do better. Having some experience with lemon scones and muffins and such, I didn't think the original recipe called for anywhere near enough lemon for my tastes, and I wanted a thicker, fudgier glaze.

I was right.  The resulting original batter just wasn't anywhere near lemony enough, so I upped the ante and switched to my glaze. And oh boy and I ever glad I did, because what resulted was a wonderful, dense, buttery, super lemony bar of artery clogging amazingness.

For the lemonies
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, soft
2 eggs
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemons
  1. Butter a piece of foil, and line your 8x8 pan. 
  2. Preheat oven to 350F.
  3. Combine everything but flour.  Beat on high until comes together.  
  4. Add flour and beat low until smooth batter forms. Don't overdo it, but yes, this is one of those times where flour and beater are friends.
  5. Bake 25-40 minutes, until golden bubbles appear and edges start to brown. Remove to cool.
  6. Once cool, remove from aluminum, and place back in pan.
For the glaze
Powdered sugar (about 1 2/3 cups)
2 Tbsp. coconut milk
2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
  1. Combine lemon juice, zest, butter, and milk.
  2. Adding a Table spoon at a time, beat in powdered sugar.
  3. Around 20-25 Tbsp. seems to be the sweet spot, but a thick, off-white glaze should develop.
  4. Smear over top of lemonies.
  5. Refrigerate until firm.
Makes 9 lemonies at approx. 225 calories a piece.

Parmesan Black Pepper & Garlic Beer Bread

I hate waste, and I love a good loaf of beer bread.  The leftovers from my little dinner party are haunting me in the fridge, and today is a bit chilly, so I thought I'd toss together something yummy.

Enter the mini-loaves, because I'm still dieting and I love bread. It was a good thing, because I ate half of one straight out of the oven. because, you know, SCIENCE!

This cheezy, garlic goodness is full of flavor, and just a bit of that hoppy bite rounds it out into a nice, savory loaf.

1 1/2 cups flour
1 1/4 cups Smuttynose Rhye IPA and a bit more
1/2 heaping tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 cup shaved parm
2 large cloves garlic, crushed and diced
1/4-1/2 tsp. ground black pepper, to taste

  1. Line 2 mini loaf pans with aluminum and butter them. Preheat oven to 375F.
  2. Combine flour, powder, salt and sugar and give a good whisk.  
  3. Add garlic, parm and pepper.  Stir until coated.  
  4. And 1 1/4 cups beer.  If still a bit dry, add by Tbsp. until a slightly wet, almost drop biscuit consistency, but not that wet.
  5. Spoon in, smooth out, and bake about 30-40 min, until golden and pass the toothpick test all the way to the bottom!
  6. For a full loaf, double everything but the beer.  Just use a whole 12 oz. bottle of beer.

10 servings at about 100 calories a serving.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Super Chunky Homemade Chicken Soup

I don't know about you, but when I'm sick or cold, I want chicken soup. It's all I can think about.  So, this time of year I always keep some kind of broth in the house, and even store frozen chicken, just for making a nice, individual, loaded pot of soup.

This is one of those things where everything is from scratch, and generally done in the same week, but I don't do it all at the same time. It's even a bit of a rotating recipe, because as one meals is made, the next gets prepped.

Confused?  Don't be.

Whenever I cook chicken, I have leftover.  The leftover chicken gets frozen.  The leftover carcass, skin and bones, goes in a baggies and gets frozen as well.  When I have time, I make broth. I keep 2 cups for cooking and freeze the rest.  Tada.  Frozen veggies, frozen chicken, frozen brother. Easy peasy.

1 cup Ain't Nobody Got Time for that Chicken Bone Broth/Stock Hybrid
2 oz. onion, diced finely
2 oz. carrot, diced finely
2 oz. fennel, diced finely (or celery)
3 oz. cooked chicken, diced
A dash of black pepper
A dash of cayenne
A dash of garlic salt

  1. If you're working with frozen goods, pull everything out the night before to thaw before cooking.
  2. In a soup pot, combine veggies and about 1/4 cup of the broth.  Try to get some of that good fatty top off into it as well. 
  3. Add your black pepper.
  4. Saute the veggies in the broth until tender.  
  5. If you're using fennel stalk, slice it very, very thin and start it about 5 minutes earlier than everything else.  The bulb can be done normal. Onions should be translucent.
  6. Add the pre-cooked chicken and the rest of the broth and heat thoroughly.  
  7. Then add cayenne and garlic salt to taste.

1 serving/ 216 calories

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Ain't Nobody Got Time for that Chicken Bone Broth/Stock Hybrid

Whenever I make chicken, I keep the meaty bits of bones left afterward for soup.  But I don't follow directions.  I just go with my gut, and make a stock/broth hybrid for soups.  It keeps in the fridge for about a week, but keeps in the freezer for months.

Great for a single lady on the go, and good for a chilly evening at home grading papers. Also great for families because, while it takes forever, it doesn't take much tending.  Once it's started, you can pop in every now and then, but otherwise just leave it be.

I like to toss a pot on the stove when I get home from teaching (Around 4pm) and remove and store it before bed.

Cooked Chicken, bone in skin on
3 oz. carrot
3 oz. fennel or celery
1 small onion, chopped
1 Tbsp garlic salt
a bit of black pepper
3-4 bay leaves
2 Tbsp. vinegar-champagne, rice, or apple cider

  1. I make a somewhat low sodium version, because I want to be able to add to it.
  2. Remove as much meat from your chicken as you can to reuse.  
  3. Then toss the bones in your large crock pot with everything else.  If the bones come halfway up, fill the water as high as you feel comfortable.  If there are less, fill half full and make sure everything is fully submerged. The vinegar, I am told, helps leach more minerals from the bones to give you a health boost. 
  4. Yes, some people saute the aromatics.  I ain't got time for that, and I don't want or need the added calories from butter or fat to do so.  Seems to work just fine just tossing it all in.
  5. Cook on High 6 hours, and then low until the vegetables are a wilted, translucent, colorless mess. The more time it cooks, the heavier the flavor.
  6. Spices should be adjusted based on how the chicken was cooked. This batch had rosemary in it, so I added only garlic salt, black pepper, and bay.
  7. When finished, allow to cool enough to safely store. 
  8. Line a colander or sieve with paper towels or cheese cloth, and drain out into clean, large, bowl.  
  9. I store mine in yogurt containers in the freezer. Then, once it's frozen, I pop out the pucks and stack them in ziplocs.

Around 50 calories per 1 cup.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Pesto Mushrooms with Seafood

I want pasta, but it's not cheat day, so I did what I've been doing when I want pasta and don't have Nooodles or something around.  I made the pasta without the noodles.

I've got some fake crab legs in the house, because I wanted them.  I can't afford real crab, and these work for me. You can use any you want, but I would use pre-cooked.

4 oz. mushrooms, sliced
1 oz. onion, sliced
1 tsp. pesto
3 legs fake crab or 90g of seafood
1/4 cup chopped mustard greens
a dash of garlic powder
salt to taste

  1. Sautee mushrooms and onion until beginning to brown.  
  2. Then add everything else, cooking until greens wilt and seafood warmed through.

Serves 1 at 168 calories

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Heirloom Pear and Beet Skillet and the End of Nutritional Profiles

Right now my house is full of pears and beets.  Pears from my father's tree, and beets from the farm share. I'm feeling a little braver following my cooking instincts today, so I decided to give them a go together, and was rewarded for my efforts. Yum

6 oz. beets, scrubbed clean, skin on
6 oz pear, cored, skin on
2 cups arugula, washed, shredded, stems removed
1/2 Tbsp bacon fat or coconut oil
2 Tbsp. unsalted, unshelled pistachios

  1. While your oil heats, dice your fruits and veggies about the size of your average country potato.  
  2. Toss them in, and cook until pears are slightly charred.  
  3. Add in arugula and wilt almost all of the way before adding the nuts. 
  4. Once arugula is fully wilted, serve.

Serves one at 323 calories.

So, I'm not going to be adding the nutritional profiles anymore.  It's such a hassle, and doesn't seem to matter much. Also, depending on your brand or variety, more or less calories could be part of the dish. So, I've decided to go with the general, and if you want more in-depth info, you can always upload the recipe to MyFitnessPal, or a similar site. This will save me time, and make me more likely to post.  But you can let me know in the comments, that no one but spam bots tends to use, if you'd like them to come back!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Savory Delicata Dijon with Feta

Being someone who loves food, and is dieting, can be a bit of a challenge on a day to day basis.  I'm constantly trying to come up with new things that I won't just eat, but love, that I can make in small portions, keep low calorie, and feel full. As I get closer and closer to my goal, this gets more difficult, as I have less and less calories to work with to maintain, if not lose, weight and a slower metabolism. All part of the weight loss journey, and why so many people fail.

But I am determined.

So, I stared into the abyss that is my veggie filled fridge today, craving one of those awful maple pancake sausage, cheese and bacon sandwiches I used to snag in the mornings in college knowing today was going to be a rough day.

This lightly mustard-flavored dish was both sweet and salty, and everything I needed to get me going, and was under 250 calories!

4 slices turkey bacon (I'm using Butterball Everyday Low-Sodium)
1 oz. raw arugula
1/2 oz. green onion, finely chopped
3 oz. delicata squash, pre-spiralized or julienned
1 tsp. Dijon mustard (I'm using a Rsberry-Wasabi)
1 oz. feta

  1. In large saute pan, cook bacon, then set aside.  
  2. Toss in squash and cook until most start to turn transparent.  
  3. Add 1/2 tsp. mustard and stir well, until squash starts get tender.  
  4. Add green onion, arugula, and the last 1/2 tsp. of mustard and a Tbsp or so of water.  
  5. Wilt well.  
  6. Add bacon and feta back in and toss until warmed through.

Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 232
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 10 g16 %
Saturated Fat 4 g20 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 35 mg12 %
Sodium 635 mg26 %
Potassium 143 mg4 %
Total Carbohydrate 7 g2 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g4 %
Sugars 2 g
Protein 13 g27 %
Vitamin A20 %
Vitamin C12 %
Calcium15 %
Iron3 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Blackberry Delicata Noodles with Turkey Bacon

I love delicata squash because it can be sweet or savory.  This was a super quick, super yummy breakfast idea that I tossed together on a whim.

I'm using Butterball's Every Day lower sodium turkey bacon and Musselman's apple butter today.  It's my favorite and one of the few I have refused to drop off of my factory processed foods list. I just have never found anyone else's to be as wonderful. Maybe because M's is what I grew up slathering toast with.  The bacon was a whim.  I wanted real bacon but they were out, and this was cheappppp. It turned out to be a good buy!

3 oz. delicata squash, pre-spiralized
3 oz. blackberries
1 Tbsp. apple butter
1 Tbsp. shaved Parmesan
3 slices turkey bacon

  1. Cook turkey bacon and set aside.
  2. In same pan, still hot, combine squash, blackberries and apple butter, stirring constantly.  
  3. Crush blackberries a bit with a fork.  
  4. When squash is cooked through, add turkey back in and warm through.

Serve with shaved parm.

Nutrition Facts
Servings 1.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 196
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7 g11 %
Saturated Fat 3 g13 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 30 mg10 %
Sodium 289 mg12 %
Potassium 385 mg11 %
Total Carbohydrate 25 g8 %
Dietary Fiber 6 g25 %
Sugars 12 g
Protein 10 g20 %
Vitamin A15 %
Vitamin C52 %
Calcium12 %
Iron10 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.