Saturday, June 28, 2008

Bacon and Potato Frittata

Breakfast for dinner! We love breakfast foods, and this really combines all the flavors we like.

6 large eggs
1 1/2 tablespoons half-and-half
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
4 ounces bacon (about 4 slices), cut crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces
1/2 pound new red potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 1/2 ounces mozzarella cheese

- Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position, about 5 inches from heating element; heat broiler. Whisk eggs, half-and-half, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper in medium bowl until well combined, about 30 seconds. Set eggs aside.

- Fry bacon in 10-inch nonstick oven safe skillet over medium heat until crisp, about 10 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to paper towel-lined plate; pour off all but 1 tablespoon of bacon fat. Add potatoes to skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown and tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Stir mozzarella and bacon into eggs; add egg mixture to skillet and cook, using spatula to stir and scrape bottom of skillet, until large curds form and spatula begins to leave wake but eggs are still very wet, about 1 minute. Shake skillet to distribute eggs evenly; cook without stirring for 30 seconds to let bottom set.

- Slide skillet under broiler and broil until frittata has risen and surface is puffed and spotty brown, 1 1/2 to 2 minutes; when cut into with paring knife, eggs should be slightly wet and runny. Remove skillet from oven and let stand 5 minutes to finish cooking; using spatula, loosen frittata from skillet and slide onto platter or cutting board. Cut into wedges and serve.

2-3 servings.


Parmesan Chicken and Rice

In an effort to be healthy, I have tried as many light recipes as possible. Although this recipe is healthy, it is really delicious. I'm sure I will be making this a lot.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
3/4 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup uncooked instant brown rice
1 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup (2 ounces) grated fresh Parmesan cheese
1 Tablespoon parsley

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, thyme, and mushrooms; sauté 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Add chicken; sauté 4 minutes or until the chicken is lightly browned. Add wine, salt, and pepper; cook 3 minutes or until liquid almost evaporates.

Stir in rice and broth. Bring to a boil; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Stir in cheese and parsley.

4 servings.


Nutritional Information: CALORIES 395(18% from fat); FAT 8g (sat 2.8g,mono 3.7g,poly 0.8g); PROTEIN 29.9g; CHOLESTEROL 57mg; CALCIUM 171mg; SODIUM 656mg; FIBER 2g; IRON 4.1mg; CARBOHYDRATE 44.4g

Whiskey Pork Chops

These are so wonderful. Plus, since the recipe came from cooking light, its also ultra-healthy.

2/3 cup fat-free sour cream
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried rubbed sage
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
4 (6-ounce) pork chops, trimmed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 (8-ounce) package presliced mushrooms
1/2 cup whiskey

Preheat oven to 300°. Combine the first 6 ingredients in a small bowl. Sprinkle pork with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork; sauté 5 minutes on each side or until golden. Remove pork from pan.

Add onion and mushrooms to pan; sauté for 3 minutes. Carefully add whiskey to pan; cook for 1 minute or until liquid almost evaporates. Stir sour cream mixture into pan.

Return pork to pan; spoon sauce over pork. Wrap handle of skillet with foil. Cover and bake at 325 for 45 minutes. Serve immediately.

4 servings.

Source: and

Greek Chicken Pasta

I wasn't sure how this would go over, since Brent is not big on Greek food. However, two huge servings later, he announced that he loved it. Its super easy to make and tastes wonderful.

1 pound uncooked pasta (I used penne)
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 to 1 cup chopped onion
1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breasts
1 can diced tomatoes
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
3 teaspoons parsley
2 tablespoons lemon juice or white wine
2 teaspoons dried oregano
salt and pepper to taste

- Place chicken breasts in oven-proof baking dish. Drizzle with 1 tbsp. olive oil and sprinkle with your choice of herb seasoning. Bake for 35 - 45 minutes at 375 degrees, or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

- Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Cook pasta in boiling water for 8 to 10 minutes, or until al dente; drain.

- Meanwhile, heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and onion, and saute for 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low, and add the tomato, parsley, lemon juice (or white wine), oregano and cooked pasta. Stir until heated through, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. Slice the chicken breasts into pieces and add to top of pasta; sprinkle feta cheese over the plated pasta.

2-3 servings

Taco Dip

This taco "dip" is more like a meal. I made it for dinner, and it went over really well with Brent.

4 oz cream cheese
4 oz sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 lb ground beef
taco seasoning packet
4oz tomato sauce
4 oz cheddar cheese
2 cups shredded lettuce
1 cup salsa
tortilla chips

In a bowl, beat the cream cheese, sour cream, and mayo together until smooth. Meanwhile, cook the beef over medium heat. Drain, and stir in the taco seasoning and tomato sauce. Cook and stir about 5 minutes.

To mix: In a bowl, pour the lettuce, followed by the cream cheese mixture, then the meat mixture. Finally, top it off with the cheddar cheese and salsa. Use the chips to dip.

4 - 6 servings.

Asian Grilled Chicken

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoon rice vinegar
2 Tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
1/4 teaspoon EVOO
1/4 teaspoon wasabi sauce
4 medium chicken breasts, pounded to even thickness

-Combine all ingredients but chicken in large bowl and stir to combine.
-Add chicken and toss to coat and submerge.
-Place in fridge and marinate for about 30 minutes to an hour.
-Heat grill or grill pan to medium heat.
-Take chicken out of marinade and place on grill breast side down.
-Cook without moving until grill marks have formed on the breast.
-Flip chicken and brush top with more of the marinade mixture.
-Cook breast side up until grill marks have formed.
-Brush chicken one more time and flip breast side down.
-Turn grill to lower setting and continue cooking until done.
-Remove from grill and cover with foil for 10 minutes before serving.

Or instead of grilling, you can bake at 375 for 40 minutes.

4 servings.


Friday, May 2, 2008

Beef and Cheese Manicotti

I still love Italian, and this is wonderful. I will make this often. Brent, who usually complains about pasta, happily ate the left-overs the next day.

4 teaspoons olive oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
1 pound extra-lean ground beef
Black pepper
14 (8-ounce package) manicotti
1 (15-ounce) container skim-milk ricotta
3 cups shredded mozzarella
1 cup grated Parmesan
1 tablespoon parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 cups tomato sauce

Heat a heavy medium skillet over medium heat. Add 1 teaspoon of the olive oil, onion and ground beef. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until the meat browns and the onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat, and cool. Brush 1 teaspoon of oil over a large baking sheet. Meanwhile, cook the manicotti in a large pot of boiling salted water until slightly softened, but still very firm to the bite, about 4 to 6 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the manicotti from the pot to the oiled baking sheet and cool. Meanwhile, combine the ricotta, 1 1/2 to 2 cups mozzarella cheese, 1/2 cup Parmesan, and parsley. Add the garlic, salt, and pepper to taste, and mix. Stir the cooled meat mixture into the cheese mixture.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brush the remaining 2 teaspoons of oil over a 13 by 9 by 2-inch glass baking dish. Spoon 1 1/2 cups of the marinara sauce over the bottom of the prepared dish. Fill the manicotti with the cheese-meat mixture. Arrange the stuffed pasta in a single layer in the prepared dish and spoon the remaining sauce over. Sprinkle the remaining 1 1/2 cups of mozzarella cheese, then the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmesan over the stuffed pasta. Bake the manicotti uncovered until heated through and the sauce bubbles on the sides of the dish, about 30 to 35 minutes. Let the manicotti stand 5 minutes.

2 servings.

Source: Giada De Laurentiis, Food Network

Chicken Roll-Ups

I was planning to make chicken quesadillas, but the tortillas I bought were two thin. These turned out great, and sauce really gave them an extra zing.

4 flour tortillas (I used low carb)
2 large boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/4 onion, diced
1 tomato, diced
1/3 lb pepper jack cheese, diced into small pieces
1 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 cup sour cream
1 Tablespoon lime juice
1/8 cup barbecue sauce

Season chicken with chili powder, salt, and cumin. Heat olive oil in pan over medium high heat. Cook chicken in pan until done. Add onions and cook until done. Dice chicken into 1 inch pieces.
In blender, puree sour cream, lime juice, barbecue sauce, and dash salt and pepper. On each flour tortilla, place 1/4 diced chicken and onions and 1/4 diced pepper jack cheese pieces. Cook in microwave for 30 seconds or until cheese melts. Add 1/4 diced tomatoes and top with 1/4 of sour cream mixture. Roll up tortillas and slice in half. Repeat with remaining 3 tortillas.

Servings: 4

Ricotta Orange Pound Cake

This is wonderful! I made this for my co-workers, and it turned out to be a big hit. I forgot to take a picture, so I managed to snag a picture of the last two slices.
1 1/2 cups cake flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter, room temperature, plus more to grease the baking pan
1 1/2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
1 1/2 cups sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 orange, zested
3 tablespoons orange juice
Fresh fruit
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 5 by 3-inch loaf pan with butter. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine. Using an electric mixer, cream together the butter, ricotta, and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With the machine running, add the eggs 1 at a time. Add the vanilla, orange zest, and orange juice until combined. Add the dry ingredients, a small amount at a time, until just incorporated. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean and the cake is beginning to pull away from the sides of the pan, about 45 to 50 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve with fresh fruit.
Source: Bethany, master baker, from (original source Giada De Laurentiis)

Spicy Orange Chicken over Fried Rice

This is another healthy meal that tastes delicious. I will definitely put this into the regular meal rotation.

Spicy Orange Chicken:
2 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch pieces
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons grated orange rind
1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth
1/4 cup orange juice
2 Tablespoons soy sauce
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon chili
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
4 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 Tablespoon ginger
1 green pepper, seeded and cut into 1 inch strips
1 onion, cut into 1 inch pieces

Mix chicken, 1 Tablespoon cornstarch, and orange rind in medium bowl. Toss to coat chicken. In a medium sauce pan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add chicken. Cook 3 minutes until done. Add ginger and cook an additional minute. Remove from heat. Add onions and bell pepper to pan. Stir fry about 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix 1 Tablespoon cornstarch, broth, orange juice, soy sauce, sugar, chili sauce, and garlic powder in small bowl. Mix well. Add broth mixture to pan with onions and bell pepper. Cook until broth starts to boil and thicken, about 1 minute. Add chicken and cook until heated through.

Servings: 4 servings
Nutritional information (per serving): 227 calories, 8 g fat, 16 g carbohydrates, 22 g protein

Fried Rice:
4 cups cooked brown rice
1 Tablespoon olive oil
2 egg whites
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
option: onions, carrots

In large saute pan, saute veggies. Remove from pan. Heat oil over medium high heat. Once hot, add eggs and scramble. Then add rice and veggies and stir fry. Add soy sauce and fry. Season with salt and pepper.

Source: Weight watchers and

Skinny Girl Margarita

This is wonderful and only about 100 calories per serving, all from the liquor. I got this off Real Housewives of New York City's Bethenney Frankel.

Ingredients (per serving):
1 shot clear tequila
1/2 to 1 shot triple sec
2 shots lime juice
Dash grated lime rind
Sugar free lemonade

Fill glass with ice. Add tequila, triple sec, lime juice, and rind. Fill the glass to the top with lemonade. Pour into blender and mix well. Serve with sliced limes.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Pecan Crusted Salmon


1 lb salmon cut into pieces
1 Tablespoon mustard
11/2 cup honey
1 cup crushed pecans
2 Tablespoon flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/8 cup Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400, spray baking sheet with cooking spray. Mix dry ingredients, and mix mustard and honey. Dredge the salmon in the honey mustard, coat with breading and place on baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes or until flaky.

2 servings.


Warm Vegetable Salad


1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 small zucchini, halved lengthwise
2 small yellow squash, halved lengthwise
2 plum tomatoes, halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
1 tablespoon commercial pesto

Combine 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, zucchini, squash, tomatoes, vinegar, and garlic in a large zip-top plastic bag. Seal and shake to coat. Place the zucchini and yellow squash on grill rack or broiler pan coated with cooking spray; cook 3 minutes on each side or until tender. Place the tomato and onions on grill rack or broiler pan; cook 2 minutes or just until tender.
Coarsely chop the vegetables, and place in a bowl. Add pesto; stir gently.

4 servings.


Saturday, April 26, 2008

Dijon Chicken


4 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 6 ounces each)
Salt and pepper
2 tablespoons butter
8 white button mushrooms, finely chopped
1 can (10-ounce) condensed fat-free cream of mushroom soup
1/2 cup canned chicken broth
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons deli-style brown mustard
1 tomato, diced
1/4 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Melt butter in a heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook until just brown, about 4 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to plate. Add mushrooms to the same skillet and sauté until tender, about 3 minutes. Whisk in soup, broth, and mustards. Bring sauce to a simmer. Return chicken to skillet and submerge into sauce completely. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cover and cook until soup bubbles thickly and chicken is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Transfer chicken to plates and spoon sauce over the top. Sprinkle with tomatoes and corn.
4 servings.
Source: Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce and Mushrooms

1 spaghetti squash (about 2 pounds)
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup diced onion
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/4 teaspoon thyme
1 bay leaf
dash crushed red pepper flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup red wine
1/4 cup water
4 oz mushrooms
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
14 oz can diced tomatoes
1/8 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 Tablespoon Parsley

To cook squash: Pierce squash with a fork. To cook in oven, place on a baking sheet and bake at 400 for 1 hour. To speed up cooking time, you can cook part of the time in microwave. Bake until tender. Cut squash in half lengthwise; discard seeds. Scrape the insides of squash with a fork to remove spaghetti like strands. Keep warm.

While squash is cooking, heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion, oregano, thyme, bay leaves, and red pepper. Saute 5 minutes. Add garlic cloves, wine, water, mushrooms, pepper, salt, and tomatoes. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until thick, about 30 minutes. Discard bay leaves. Serve over squash. Top with cheese and parsley.

3 servings.

Source: my sister, the nutrition, and

Calories: 128, 4 fat, 5 protein, carbs 21