Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday's Are Chocolate

Every Monday morning four of my neighbors get together and play bridge, I was asking each one what they served when they host the bridge club. Trying to find some fresh ideas. The response was," we just serve ice water". I was a little surprised by that response so they will be a little surprised when I show up with this perfect Chocolate Cake tomorrow. We just took a small slice to share what a moist and chocolaty cake. I debated over icing and just slice fresh strawberries and some blueberries on the side, with a teaspoon of raw sugar on top. Perfect. I found this recipe on the inside of a Bakers select bittersweet chocolate box.

Chocolate Indulgence Cake

1 package (6 squares) Baker select Bittersweet Baking Chocolate
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks butter
4 eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 flour

Preheat oven to 350F Microwave chocolate butter in large microwaveable bowl on high 2 minutes or until butter is melted. Stir until chocolate is completely melted; cool to room temperature.
Beat eggs and sugar in large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until thickened. Add chocolate mixture; stir with wire whisk until well blended Add flour; stir until well blended. Pour into greased and floured 9-inch round cake pan. Bake 30 minutes or until center is set Cool 5 minutes, remove from pan. Cool completely on wire rack. Cut into 12 wedges to serve.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Saturday Night Specials

When my daughter was young she would come home and beg for meat loaf. Never being much of a meat loaf fan, I would talk her into something else. Can't really recall what it was, the mess or the fact that we would have leftovers for weeks. Not today, left over meat loaf is a thing from the past. I decided to make this meat loaves in individual tart tins instead to just change it up a little. You are saying looks just like a hamburger, not the case at all with loads of flavor and it is so lean and juicy. I am beginning to think it is the pan that I am afraid of. Get the BBQ ready no need to heat up the house. The man was so excited low in carbs and calories and high in protein. This recipe makes four mini loaves and each one is 241 in calories. I found this recipe in an old 2006 Light and Tasty Magazine.

I am sorry I am sorry yesterday we were having a lot of computer issues and when I gave a shout to the . I put the link in incorrectly. Go by today she always has fun and appealing to the taste buds goodies.

Grilled Meat Loaves

1 egg white
1/3 cup fat-free milk
1 tablespoon prepared horseradish
1 slice rye bread, crumbled
1/4 cup grated carrot
11/2 teaspoon dried minced onion
1 teaspoon minced fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 pound lean ground beef
2 tablespoons ketchup
41/2 teaspoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon prepared mustard

In a large bowl, combine the egg white, milk and horseradish. Stir in the bread, carrot, onion, parsley, salt and pepper. Crumble beef over the mixture and mix well. Shape into four small loaves.
Grill loaves, covered, over medium-hot heat or broil 4-6 in. from the heat for 8 minutes. Turn; cook 8 minutes longer. Combine the sauce ingredients; spoon over loaves. Cook for 2-3 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 160.

Friday, May 29, 2009


If you are a Chai lover you will love these cute little Chai mini loaves. They are so moist while cutting a loaf in half the icing just ran down the middle. I forgot to take the picture before I gave away the goodies. If you are not much of a chocolate fan this is the recipe for you. I found this recipe in the Taste of Home Magazine.
Chocolate Chai Mini Loaves

2 squares semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
11/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons chai tea latte mix
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup sour cream
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon butter, softened
1 tablespoon chai tea latte mix
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 to 5 teaspoons milk

In a microwave, melt chocolate with the water; stir until smooth. Cool slightly. In a large bowl, cream butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in vanilla, then chocolate mixture.
Combine the flour, latte mix, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with sour cream.
Transfer to three greased 5-3/4in x 3-in. x 2-in. loaf pans. Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pan to a wire rack to cool completely.
For frosting, combine the confectioner sugar, butter, latte mix, vanilla and enough milk to achieve desired consistency.
Loves to create left me an award. I don't feel I am dissevering you need to check out her blog she is also an empty Nestor who loves to cook and bake yummy dishes for her large and growing

I am with pleasure passing the Super Duper Chef Award along to Norah at Norah is always making these incredible dishes you will not be disappointed by her blog check it out and return often.

Debbie from Mocha me is a former New Yorker who love to cook and bake also the incredible items she makes are mouth watering to all. Be sure to check her out and go back often.

Thanks again to thechangeabletable for this great award I will wear it proudly.

Dinner And A Movie Friday

I can honestly say I haven't ever watched a Star Trek episode on TV or been to a Star Trek Movie. Last week while on Fandango looking for a movie I watched the trailer for Star Trek and asked hubby if he wanted to go check it out, took a little twisting of the arm and we were off. As you know if you read my blog about all we do, is exercise and eat at home and go to lots of movies. The only problem was where was my winter coat. This movie was so entertaining about all I knew of Star Trek was beam me up Scotty. The characters took on the roles so well. Chris Pine play James Kirk he is not bad on the eyes. Zachary Quinto played Spock little rival between the two. Leonard Nimoy was back to play himself Spock Prime. I like the way they tied the show to modern earthly times. A couple of the gentlemen have these incredible accents so easily impressed here. From start to finish I was totally entertained in a beam me up Scotty way. If the family is wishing too see this go along it was very entertaining.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Stay At Home Thursday

Here is a quick and easy chicken dinner. I am not a big fan of dried fruit I prefer the fresh fruit. But I love dried apricots and apples thanks to my dad he has been making for years. Mom and Dad always have of big jar of dried apples on the counter in the kitchen. You could also serve it over rice Mike liked the quinoa so well last time he requested it again. It was perfect the little nutty taste form the quinoa mixed with the fruit flavor. The Chinese five spice powder just takes it over the top. Be sure and come back tomorrow one of my fellow bloggers left me an award I will post about it tomorrow.
Apricot and Quinoa Chicken

11/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup cold water
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts cut into 1-inch pieces
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 cup apricot preserves or jam
1/3 cup dried apricots, cut into thirds
1/2 to 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
1 teaspoon reduced- sodium soy sauce

In a small saucepan, bring broth and quinoa to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until quinoa is cooked.
Meanwhile, in small bowl, combine cornstarch and water until smooth; set aside. In large nonstick skillet or wok coasted with nonstick cooking spray, stir-fry chicken in hot oil for 5 minutes or until lightly browned. Stir in the jam, apricots, five-spice powder and soy sauce. Bring to a boil
Stir cornstarch mixture and stir into chicken mixture. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Serve over quinoa.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Low Cal Wednesday

I have not been a fan of ginger snaps or gingerbread at all but I saw this low cal recipe and I happen to have all the ingredients on hand. Maybe my mind has changed or I liked it because it was not served with all the holiday fuss. This cake was so tender and moist I am a little skeptical when I use whole wheat flour as to dry it out, but it was perfect. This morning I noticed that some else must of liked it two pieces were already gone. The blueberries take this over the top fresh and full of flavor. Our little neighbors will like this one. It is not nice to refer to the neighbors as little the average age is 81. We love them all and it is so much fun too take them treats they become so excited. If you don't need to worry about your calories a big scoop of vanilla ice cream would be perfect on top. The recipe serves 12 at 163 calories a slice.

Blueberry Gingerbread

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2/3 cup low-fat plain soy milk
1/2 cup dark honey
1/3 cup molasses
1/4 cup olive oil
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup dried or fresh blueberries

Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly coat an 8-inch square baking pan with cooking spray.
In a bowl, stir together the flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Set aside.
In another bowl, whisk together the soy milk, honey molasses, and oil. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid mixture. Add the blueberries to the well and stir just to combine.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean, about 25 minutes. Transfer to wire rack to cool. Cut into 12 pieces and serve warm.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Veggie Tuesday

This recipe just reminded me of a time when, I had a car full of kids and one happened to roll down the window and ask this big Lincoln (Pardon me sir do you have any Grey Poupon?) It is hard to discipline a child when you are laughing so hard. Mr Mike was doing the cooking this last week and he made these great vegetables. I was so surprised when he set the plate down in front of me then he pulled out the Grey Poupon. Who would of thought it would add such a perfect flavor. Oh that Mike he has done it again. What a pleasant feast and low in cal to beat.
Red Potatoes and Asparagus
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 red onion chopped
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon fresh parsley chopped
4 red potatoes thinly sliced with skin on
1 bunch of asparagus cut into 2 inch strips
Grey Poupon Mustard or Dijon mustard

Heat olive oil in skillet add onion and garlic and cook until onion is softened. Add red skinned potatoes cook for about eight minutes until tender with a fork. Add asparagus and parsley cook for five minutes until tender. Drizzle Grey Poupon on top.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Gourmet Monday

Thank You Thank You to all of the Service men and woman who keep us safe on this beautiful Memorial Day. Here is a delightful and fun chicken dinner you can do on the BBQ or just in a skillet. It is quick and easy with tons of flavor. Sorry I am a little late posting I took a play day.

Busy Day Lemon Chicken Dinner

juice of one lemon
2 tablespoons of lemon pepper
3 clove of garlic minced
1/4 cup salad spread or mayo
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

In a medium bowl mix lemon juice, lemon pepper, garlic and mayo. Pat dry chicken breast; dip chicken breast in mayo mixture and let sit for half hour. Place on hot grill and cook on each side for 10 minutes. Brushing leftover mayo mixture on chicken as it cooks. Remove from pan and squeeze lemon juice on top.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday's Are Chocolate

I feel like we are the only people still in town. All of our families are out of town for the long weekend. We stayed home planning our European vacation ( hopefully not like the Griswalds but it is starting to sound like it). I made this fun peanut butter fudge cake. I also broke the healthy diet I have been on. As I was taking the cake out of the pan I had to sneak a bite but that was not all I continued to eat the first piece of cake. But I can give a perfect description of all the flavors. The cake was so moist and fluffy you can tell that by the picture. The frosting reminded me of a Reese's peanut butter cup I think, it has been so long since I had one. Perfect marriage between the two flavors. Fudge and peanut butter who can resist.
Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake

1 package chocolate cake
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 can chocolate frosting

Prepare and bake cake according to package directions, using a greased 13 in x 9 in x 2 in in. baking pan. In a small mixing bowl, combine peanut butter and oil until smooth; spread over warm cake. Cool completely on wire rack
Place frosting in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 25-30 seconds or until pourable. Carefully pour and spread over peanut butter layer. Let stand until set.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Saturday Night Specials

I hope everyone is having a nice three day weekend. Early in the week I made this fun grilled shrimp salad. The ingredients for this salad even the grilled shrimp can be prepared in advance. Just keep everything chilled and assemble right before serving. If you don't like or have papaya, cantaloupe can be a great substitute for the papaya. The dressing adds a little zip to the flavor. This salad is for sure a keeper. I found this recipe in the Healthy Heart cookbook put out by the American Medical Association.

Grilled Shrimp Salad

Olive oil cooking spray
5 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced green onion
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 lb large shrimp peeled and deveined, tails intact
4 cups shredded spinach
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced
1 small papaya, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 yellow bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a gas grill or oven broiler. Away from the heat source, lightly coat the grill rack or broiler pan with olive oil cooking spray. Position the grill rack or broiler pan 4-6 inches from the heat source.
In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, green onion, red pepper flakes, 1/8 teaspoon of the salt, and the white pepper. Set the dressing aside.
Arrange the shrimp on the grill rack or broiler pan. Season with the remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt. Grill or broil until opaque, about 11/2 minutes on each side. Cover and keep warm.
In a large bowl, combine the spinach, cucumber, papaya, tomatoes, bell pepper, basil, and cilantro. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Divide the salad among chilled individual plates. Divide the shrimp among the salads, arranging them around the edges. Serve immediately.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Dinner And A Movie Friday

Opening day everyone has been waiting for the much anticipated, Angels & Demons that is what we thought last Friday when we went to see it. I am sure if you have read the book you will enjoy it more. We had not read the book but we still enjoyed it I was so surprised to see the corruption and destruction in the Catholic Church. The story is based in the Vatican where they are trying to appoint a new Pope after the Pope died suddenly. Tom Hanks plays the lead he is back to try and help with all the signs of history. Ewan Mc Gregor plays the fallen Pope's adopted son. The story and scenery were great. I have a problem when shows begin to drag, a little dragging in a few areas just trying to make it over two hours. Everyone who had read the movie really enjoyed the movie.

A couple of years ago I found this salad while I was looking for something fun to serve at my daughter's baby shower. It was a hit and has continued to be a big hit. Prior to the shower I made the salad and took it to work it was devoured in minutes. Then I figured it was good enough to serve at the shower. Plan on everyone asking for the recipe it is real easy can be made in moments. I prefer to let it sit for hours or even over night so the flavors can marry. Tastes almost like one of those fancy caramel apples. It is so rich that I always use lite cool whip. Perfect for a Memorial Day picnic as long as you can keep it cold. You can even serve it as dessert. It could even be made at the park. You will get lots of laughs and giggles over this one.

Snickers Salad

3 large snickers bars
3 granny smith apples
1 large lite cool whip

Cut up the candy bars into bite size pieces.( I found using the kitchen shears was the quickest and your hands don't get messy). Core the apple and cut up into bite size pieces. Mix together with cool whip. Chill and serve.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Stay At Home Thursday

Who could think you can make a meal so perfect in twenty minutes. I have had this recipe for years but never given it a try. We really like Mexican food but along with that comes a lot of calories and loads of carbs. Here is a fun recipe low in calories and spicy and tender. Fajitas are my favorite I don't care what kind fish, chicken, steak, and shrimp even all together. This recipe combines all the flavors and my favorite noodle spaghetti. The man commented it looked like something that a nice restaurant would serve. I think it would be perfect over a bed of spinach next time.

Fajita Spaghetti

8 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast, cut into strips
1 tablespoon hot pepper oil
1 small onion, sliced
1 small sweet red pepper, julienned
1 small sweet yellow pepper, julienned
1 can (4 ounces) chopped green chillies
1/2 cup water
1 envelope fajita seasoning mix

Cook the spaghetti according to package directions.
In a large skillet saute chicken in oil for 8 -10 minutes or until juices run clear; saute the onion and peppers with chicken until tender. Add the water and fajita seasoning mix heat through.
Drain spaghetti; top with chicken mixture.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Low Cal Wednesday

Oh what a beautiful Morning I just looked outside and it rained last night everything is starting to look green. Last week I made this great black bean and pork stew. It was so quick and easy. Usually making stew takes at least an hour .Start to finish 30 minutes.The added spices brought out the entire flavor in the beans. I have never been a black bean fan but my mind has been changed. In this tangy stew, black beans and lean pork tenderloin are simmered with tomatoes, garlic and you can’t forget the molasses. You can not beat this one for flavor. The calories are 245 for one cup serving. This recipe serves six. This is another great recipe from that Healthy Heart Cookbook.

Hearty Pork Stew

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 yellow onion chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried oreganp

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1 large tomato, chopped

1 tablespoon dark molasses

1 cup fat-free, no salt-added chicken broth

1 lb pork tenderloin, trimmed of visible fat and cut into 1-inch cubes

3 cup canned black beans (about 2 can, each 15 oz), rinsed and drained

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro or parsley

In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and saute until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, cumin, and allspice and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomato and molasses and simmer until the flavors are blended, about 3 minutes. Carefully add the broth and bring to a boil.

Add the pork and black beans and simmer until the pork is just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Season with the salt and pepper, garnish with cilantro, and serve immediately.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Veggie Tuesday

I have been under the weather. I have not been to the doctor for anything for a year until my physical last week. Now I have the most horrible infection, my neck has a huge lump. Needless to say cooking has not been the top of my list since I can't swallow. I guess this is the diet the Dr. ordered. He makes you so sick you can't eat if you wanted too. Almost reminds my of taking the car to the shop and the next day it runs worst than it did before you took it in.
Last night I just reached in the fridge and this is what I pulled out. If you own one of these fun pewter bowls be sure to run hot hot water over before serving something hot, or throw in the freezer for ten minutes before serving something cold. The bowl or dish will hold the temperature for a long time. Roasted red peppers from a jar added a sweetness and extra crunch. The Parmesan cheese tied all the flavors together.
Crookneck, Zucchini, and Roasted Red Pepper Toss

1 crookneck squash
1 zucchini squash
half of a red onion sliced in thin strips
five red peppers from jar
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
olive oil
steak seasoning salt

Heat pan with olive oil add onion cook until soft; add crookneck and zucchini continue cooking until cooked through about four minutes season with stake seasoning salt. Remove peppers from jar, drain and slice into thin strips. Add after squash in completely cooked just to warm. Toss with cheese right before leaving pan.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Gourmet Monday

While living in Hawaii I learned to love macadamia nuts but I know how fattening they are so I try and resist the temptation. One of our sweet neighbors that we are always taking treats to brought over a big bag of macadamia nuts. MMMMMMMMMMMM I thought we need to put these macadamia nuts in something very creative and give back too the neighbors. I found these perfect Hawaiian Coconut squares. That little bit of coffee just add the perfect touch. They were crunchy on top and chewy on the bottom. I just did not want these Macadamia nuts to go to waste especially my waist.

Macadamia-Coconut Squares

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon instant coffee powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups shredded or flaked coconut
2 cup chopped toasted macadamia nuts

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease a 9-x13-inch baking pan; set aside. In large mixing bowl, beat butter, 1 cup brown sugar, instant coffee powder, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt until light and fluffy. Stir in flour 1/2 cup at a time, blending well after each addition. Spread evenly in prepared pan. Bake 20 minutes. Cool in pan on rack 15 minutes.
In large bowl, beat eggs and vanilla with remaining 1 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Stir in coconut and macadamias. Spread evenly over cooled baked layer Bake 40 to 50 minutes, or until golden brown and firm to the touch.
Use a knife to loosen cookies around edges while warm. Cool completely in pan on rack. Cut into 48 (about 11/2-inch) squares, cutting 6 strips one way and 8 strips the other way. Store in an airtight container at room temperature 1 week; freeze for longer storage.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday's Are Chocolate

Most of you probably don't know that yesterday was armed forces day. We attended a concert in the town we live in. Our town has become a little famous lately because of our funny Mayor and his foot long handle bar mustache. He spoke at the concert last night and the extra mustache was gone. I was happy to see that he had shaved it off and donated the vote money to charity. Last year when David Archuletta brought American Idol to his home town Murray the town we live in. Randy Jackson asked the mayor what's with the stache man that's a foot long.“Randy, I think that could be a look - a look for you next season: with a mustache,” Seacrest said, twirling the ends of an imaginary handlebar mustache.
This brings me to the funny picture I asked Mr Mike, if he would hold one of these Chocolate Biscotti's while I get the camera ready. When I looked up he had already taken the picture. I said that is not exactly what I had in mind honey.Oh that funny Mike. Thank goodness his mustache is not like the mayor's. It would be hitting the biscotti on both ends.

I made these fun low cal Chocolate Biscotti at only 167 Calories. If you have a diabetic in the family they might be able to give these a try. A little time consuming but very tasty. I will be rationing these off for weeks. These crunchy cookies are made for dunking. The recipe called for pitted dates and we were out so I used some cut up dried apricots in stead. This is another recipe from my Favorite new book Healthy Heart.

Chocolate Hazelnut Biscotti

Cooking spray
3/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dark honey
1/2 cup pitted dates (I used dried apricots)
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons hazelnuts or walnuts, toasted skinned, and chopped

Preheat the oven to 325F. Lightly coat a baking sheet with cooking spray.

Place the oats in a food processor and process to fine powder.

In large bowl, sift together the ground oats, flour,cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt.

In a blender or food processor, combine the honey, dates,(or apricots) oil, egg, and vanilla. Process until smooth. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid mixture. Add the nuts to the well and stir just to combine; the dough will be sticky. Let stand for 15 minutes.

With damp hands, form the dough into two 10-inch logs. Place on prepared baking sheet at least 4 inches apart. Flatten the logs to 3/4 inch thickness. Bake until firm to the touch, about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool on the pan for 20 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 F.

Using a long serrated knife, cut the logs, still on the pan, on the diagonal into 1/2-inch-wide slices. Arrange the slices cut side down on the baking sheet and return to the oven for 10 minutes. Turn the slices and bake until the edges are golden, about 10 minutes longer. Let cool completely, then store in an airtight container.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Saturday Night Specials

I just finished looking up the description for sweet potatoes and yams according to google they are one in the same. I always thought that they were different potatoes. When I bought the sweet potatoes for this dish I was very surprised that the outside was dark orange and the inside was light yellow. But to my surprise the taste was the same even though the color was different. I was hoping they would change color as they cooked, not happening. I did not plan it that way but this recipe is for two it would be very easy to add to make for a whole family. The hardest part of the recipe was finding the Caribbean jerk seasoning. It was worth the hunt at the grocery store it mixed with the brown sugar added so much flavor and sweetness to the tender meat. This recipe is a keeper. I know what they say about H1N1 but I bought the pork tenderloin way before we had a problem with pork. The pork was just the way I like it so tender it fell apart before we could take the picture. The apples and cranberry adds a little sweetness to the meat. I like the fact of no pans to wash and we didn't heat up the house. We let Mikey try it and he loved it.
Rolled Pork Tenderloin ans Sweet Potatoes

2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon Caribbean jerk seasoning
1 (3/4-lb) pork tenderloin
1 small apple, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons sweetened dried cranberries
1 large dark orange sweet potato, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
2 tablespoons water
2 teaspoons all- purpose flour

Spray 2-1/2 to 3-1/2 quart slow cooker with nonstick cooking spray. In small bowl, combine brown sugar and Caribbean jerk seasoning; mix well.
Place pork tenderloin between 2 sheets of waxed paper or plastic wrap. Pound with rolling pin or flat side of meat mallet until 1/2 inch thick. Sprinkle pork with 1 teaspoon brown sugar mixture. Top evenly with apple slices and cranberries. Starting with one short side, roll up, tucking in fruit while rolling. Secure with string.
Place sweet potato slices in sprayed slow cooker. Top with pork roll. Sprinkle pork and sweet potatoes with remaining brown sugar mixture.
Cover; cook on low setting for 4 to 5 hours.
About 5 minutes before serving, in 1- cup microwave-safe measuring cup, combine water and flour; blend well. Remove pork from slow cooker; place on cutting board. Remove sweet potatoes from slow cooker; place on serving platter. Pour juices from slow cooker into flour mixture; mix well. Microwave on High for 30 to 60 seconds or until mixture boils and thickens slightly, stirring once halfway through cooking. Cut pork into slices; place over sweet potatoes on platter. Pour sauce over top. If desired, add salt and pepper to taste.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Dinner And A Movie Friday

Ghosts of Boyfriends Past oh sorry I thought this was my movie. I mean Ghosts of Girlfriends Past. When we saw this movie I thought of myself and what I would do, if my boyfriends had returned. It stars Matthew McConaughey who plays a high fashion photographer, womanizer but he does have a little hidden sweetness, he just can't decide what he wants. Jennifer Garner is his long lost childhood sweetheart. They have both come home to a family wedding where his past girlfriends appear in the strangest places. Michael Doughlas plays the deceased Uncle. It was very predictable but cute and the chemistry between Matthew and Jennifer is perfect. This was rated PG13.

Now for the pie. Last week for Mother's Day we made each of our mother's a fresh strawberry pie to go along with the Barnes and Noble gift cards. I have not attempted to make a strawberry pie in years.I have several different recipes. If I attempted to do this again I am sure it would not happen. I don't know what happened, but both of the pies a little of the filling went through the bottom of the crust and set up under the crust. So it was like an extra layer, everyone commented how pretty it looked and how did I do it. Fluke. I am not guaranteeing it will work again. I let the shells cool for hours before we filled with the strawberries. It is not my favorite recipe but everyone else was tickled. Even my dad the pie baker was happy. He's family owned a pie company for years.Here is a recipe for the crust and the filling is

Sylvia's Fresh Strawberry Pie

2 (8 inch) pie shells, baked
2 1/2 quarts fresh strawberries
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup white sugar
1 cup boiling water
2 (3 ounce) packages strawberry flavored jello

In a saucepan, mix together the sugar and corn starch, make sure it is blended well before you move to the next step. Add the boiling water, and cook over medium heat until mixture thickens. Remove from heat. Add jello mix and stir until smooth. Let mixture cool to room temperature.
Wash and cut strawberries into bite size pieces. Place strawberries in baked pie shells. Pour cooled jello mixture over strawberries.
Refrigerate over night until set. Serve with freshly whipped cream.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Stay At Home Thursday

Not much in the cooking mood this week we have been sitting on pins and needles. Our son has six weeks left in Iraq and the soldier who lost it earlier this week, killing five soldiers was in our sons unit. We had not heard anything until yesterday, all is well. Now we can sleep and get back to cooking.
Mike the man of the house wanted to test out his new Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce that her purchased at Costco. He is our little guest blogger today. I will say I was a little surprised at the taste and the color was out of this world I can't wait to find other items to use this Raspberry Chipotle Sauce on.The sweetness of the fresh raspberries is the perfect contrast to the spicy smoke of the chipotle pepper.
Raspberry Chipotle Steak Salad

1 top sirloin steak cut into strips
1 cucumber
1 avocado
2 cup fresh spinach leaves
1/4 cup chopped red onion
1/4 broccoli chopped bite size pieces
Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce

Put cut steak on plate and pour Chipotle Sauce over to cover let sit half hour in fridge. BBQ steak on grill for three minutes on each side. While steak is cooking spread spinach leaves on plate add broccoli cucumber, avocado, and red onion. Place steak on top of salad greens and use Chipotle Sauce a dressing.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Low Cal Wednesday

Environmental Nutrition put out a list of the 15 super foods for Superior Health. I just happened upon a recipe in an old Bon Appetit magazine January 2006 issue, that included four super foods from the list in one recipe. If you have not tried Quinoa it is well worth the effort to give it a try. We were able to find a bag a Costco. You prepare somewhat like rice. This recipe spices up the quinoa to match the stew. One cup full filled me right up the gentleman went back for seconds. I would guess about 350 calories for a two cup serving one cup of Quinoa and one cup of Stew.

1.Hurrah for Quinoa. Quinoa (KEEN-wah) is actually a seed, not a grain and serves up high-quality protein 11 grams per half cup and 5 grams of fiber per half cup.
2. Butternut Squash. This tasty fruit (yes fruit) is an exceptional source of beta-carotene, the antioxidant you body converts to vitamin A.
3.Long live Onions. The Egyptian symbol of eternity may actually prolong your life. The quercetin in them helps prevent oxidation of "BAD" cholesterol and defends against cancer and cataracts. For maximum quercetin, choose red onions, then yellow, then white.
4. I say Tomato. Cooked or processed tomatoes are your very best source of cancer-fighting lycopene. New research shows it may offer bone protection, too. So enjoy your spaghetti sauce, tomato soup, or pizza. Adding a touch of fat like olive oil, increases absorption.
Quinoa with Moroccan Winter Squash and Carrot Stew
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 teaspoons Hungarian sweet paprika
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Pinch of saffron
1 cup water
1 141/2- ounce can diced tomatoes, drained ( I used fresh)
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 cups 1-inch cubes peeled butternut squash (from 11/2-pound squash)
2 cups 3/4-inch cubes peeled carrots

1 cup quinoa
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped peeled carrot
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
2 cups water
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, divided
2 teaspoons chopped fresh mint divided

For Stew: Heat oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion; saute until soft, stirring often, about 5 minutes. Add garlic;stir 1 minute. Mix in paprika and next 8 ingredients. Add 1 cup water, tomatoes, and lemon juice. Bring to boil. Add squash and carrots. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat until vegetables are tender, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

For quinoa: Rinse quinoa; drain. Melt butter with oil in large saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and carrot. Cover;cook until vegetables begin to brown stirring often, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, salt, and turmeric; saute1 minute. Add quinoa; stir 1 minute. Add 2 cups water. Bring to boil; reduce heat to medium-low. Cover; simmer until liquid is absorbed and quinoa is tender, about 15 minutes.
Stir in half of cilantro and half of mint into stew. Spoon quinoa onto platter, forming well in center. Spoon stew into well. Sprinkle remaining herbs over top.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Veggie Tuesday

Calling all Vegan's this is the recipe for you. I am sorry if I bore anyone with all of the Healthy recipes. I can't help it since I bought this new book and it has pictures. I love the fact that each recipe lists the calories, proteins, sodium, cholesterol, saturated fat, monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat. Most of the recipes don't have a long list of ingredients and 3/4 have a picture.One of the best foods for macular degeneration is kale. I just happen to find a recipe. This was a first for the hubby and I we have never had kale before. It was amazing how the color transformed while we were cooking the kale. The kale is a dull color of green doesn't really look to appetizing if you ask me. After about two minutes of cooking the color just livened up in the pan. Now for the flavor sweet and spicy almost to pretty to eat. Serves four at 102 calories a serving. This recipe also came from the American Medical Association Healthy Heart Cookbook.
Spicy Greens with Sun-Dried Tomatoes

1 Tablespoon olive oil
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 cup shopped sun dried tomatoes, plumped in warm water
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar or red wine vinegar
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 lb fresh kale or other greens such as collard or mustard, thick ribs and stems cut away, and leaves chopped
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Be sure to swirl fresh greens in plenty of cold water to ensure a good cleaning a quick rinsing doesn't do the trick.
In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat and the onion and saute until soft, about 4 minutes.
Add the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, and garlic and mix well. Add the greens, one- third at a time, pressing them down as they begin to wilt. Season with the salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook uncovered, until the greens are tender, about 8 minutes. Serve hot.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Gourmet Monday

Just a word of caution if you make this dish be sure and where an apron. I don't even own an apron maybe I could find one in my cedar chest. Cutting a mango is a chore but don't give up. Here are some steps to make the process easier. To peel and dice a ripe mango, stand the fruit on one of its narrow ends. Cut the mango off-center, just grazing one side of the pit. Repeat on the other side. Score the cut side of two lobes in a grid without piercing the peel. Press the mango lobes inside out and slice off the cubes of fruit near the peel.Here is a quick video on Youtube that will help you understand if you have not done this before. The chicken with this salad was light and juicy and sweet from the honey and the mango. I had a hard time finding the arugula it has a very different flavor. The combination of the two worked out perfectly. This recipe is a keeper. I found this recipe in the July 2008 Oprah Magazine.Mango Chicken Salad

4 cups of arugula
1 mango peeled and sliced into 1 inch long pieces
1 red pepper,trimmed, seeded and sliced into 1-inch long pieces
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
Sea Salt
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 boneless chicken breast
1/4 cup slivered almonds

In large bowl, combine arugula, mango, and red pepper. In another, small bowl, whisk together olive oil, vinegar, and a pinch of salt. Set aside. In a shallow, wide bowl, stir together honey and mustard. Add chicken and toss to evenly coat. Grill chicken over medium high heat ( or cook in a skillet with 2 teaspoon olive oil) until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes, turning once halfway through. When done, chicken should register about 165 on a meat thermometer, and juices should run clear when pierced with a knife. Transfer to a cutting board and let sit 5 to 7 minutes.
Slice chicken into l-inch long pieces. Add to salad; toss to combine. Add balsamic vinaigrette and almonds toss again before serving. Makes 2 servings.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sundays Are Chocolate

Happy Mother's Day

We are having some technical difficulties this morning.
A friend of mine served these great sweet rolls at a brunch and gave me the recipe. That was about ten years ago. Just getting around to making them. While the dough was rising clean, clean. Do some more work on the rolls clean some more. I must be honest I only tried one little piece and it was tasty with the orange and chocolate combo together. The rolls were light, fluffy and heavy at the same time go figure. The reviews coming back were great. Some warmed the rolls up and some ate them cold. I guess anything works.

Chocolate Orange Sweet Rolls with Orange Glaze

3/4 cup whole milk
1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons orange juice
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
2 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar, divided
1 tablespoon finely grated orange peel
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon rapid-rise dry yeast
4 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cup semisweet chocolate chops divided
1/2 cup whopping cream
2 tablespoon Grand Marnier or orange liqueur or orange juice
11/4 cups powdered sugar

Butter two 9 inch cake pans with 11/2 inch-high sides. Combine milk, 1/4 cup orange juice, and 4 tablespoons butter in small saucepan. Stir over medium heat until mixture register 120 F on thermometer. Whisk eggs, 1/4 cup sugar orange peel, and salt in large bowl.
Gradually whisk hot milk mixture in mixture. Stir in yeast, then flour. Knead dough on floured surface until smooth elastic, about 5 minutes. Place dough in lightly oil bowl; turn to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm draft-free area until doubled in volume about 30 minutes.
Punch down dough and divide in half. Roll 1 piece of floured surface in 1/x12-inch rectangle. Spread with 3 tablespoons butter; sprinkle evenly with 1/3 cup chocolate chips and 1/4 cup sugar. Roll up form 1 long side; pinch log at seam to seal. Get your piece of dental floss unused (haha) wrap dental floss around roll and pull tight this will make an even cut and faster than a knife. Slice log into 12 rolls. Place rolls, cut side down and side by side, in single layer in 1 prepared pan. Repeat with remaining dough, butter, chocolate chips and sugar. Cover rolls loosely with towel; let rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 375 F. Stir cream and Grand Marnier in small bowl; drizzle mixture evenly over rolls. Bake until rolls are puffed and golden, about 25 minutes. Cool 15 minutes.
Whisk powdered sugar with enough orange juice to make thick glaze, adding 1 tablespoon juice at a time. Remove rolls from pan; spread with glaze. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Saturday Night Specials

Wow we just came home and the kitchen still smells of this fragrant chicken dinner. The rosemary added so much flavor and it was so quick and easy and healthy.I found this recipe in the American Medical Association Healthy Heart Cookbook. The hubby said this one is a keeper. It is race day so I will be brief. Don't forget to come back tomorrow for a Mother's Day chocolate delight. Happy Mother's Day to all of the Mother's.Chicken with Rosemary & Pearl Onions

1 lbs skinless, boneless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
10 oz pearl onions
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 clove garlic minced
2 tablespoons flour
11/2 cup fat free, no-salt-added chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary, plus sprigs for garnish
3/4 teaspoon of salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 tomato, peeled,seeded and finely chopped

Bring a saucepan three-fourths full of water to a boil, add the pearl onion, and let stand(blanch) for 1 minute. Drain and immerse in cold water for 5 minutes to stop the cooking. Drain again and slip off the skins. Using a small, sharp knife, trim away the root and stem ends. Set aside.

In another saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the tomato and garlic and cook for about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with the flour and whisk for about 1 minute. Add the broth in a stream, continuing to whisk to keep lumps from forming. Reduce the heat to low and whisk in the chopped rosemary, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Bring to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly until thickened. Reduce the heat to low and ass the pearl onion and the chicken. Simmer until the chicken is opaque throughout, about 4 minutes. Serve immediately, garnished with the rosemary sprigs.

Dinner And A Movie

Last week we saw the movie Obsessed, I would say it was entertaining. It Stars Idris Elba this attractive English man can carry a movie well I don't believe I have seen him before. Idris is a successful business man married to Beyonce when a temp worker tries to spilt the happy couple up. A little like a fatal attraction but he is innocent. The show is rated PG-13 for violence (cat fright). We were entertained it keeps you guessing what is she going to do next.

As we are getting ready to send our last package to Iraq.....WHootWHoot. This recipe came from a good friend who died twenty years ago of cancer, so as I walk for the cure tomorrow I will think of my good friend Jodie. These cookies are crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside. Best Chocolate Chip Cookies I have ever made, and I have made a lot in my day. The secret is to only cook eight minutes and let the cookies continue to cook on the tray outside the oven for about two minutes. Perfect every time.

Jodie's Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup Crisco (I have used butter it works about the same)
2 teaspoons vanilla

2 eggs
2 teaspoon water
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoon baking soda
2 1/2 cups flour
2 cups Old Fashion Oats
2 cups Chocolate Chips
2 cups Chopped nuts optional

Blend all together. Bake at 350 on Greased Cookie Sheets for eight minutes. Makes five dozen.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Stay At Home Thursday

As we finished our eight mile walk yesterday. The thought crossed my mind a month ago if someone had said I was going to walk eight miles and not stop I would of said ya RIGHT. We started a little bit at a time now it is easy. A few weeks ago we were asked to walk in Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure. So hubby committed us to walk. Sure I say: it is easy for you my little retired military man who is used to running three miles every day. This is one reason our recipes have taken a change. The other is, it is time for the yearly physical. Last year my cholesterol was on the high side the Dr suggested medication. I do not take any meds now, and I don't want to start. So we have been making changes all year with this in mind. In a couple of weeks I will fill you in on how I have done. I did pass the dreaded Colonoscopy with flying colors yea nine years left before I need that one again.
Back to food earlier in the week I made this dish it had so much flavor and I liked the fact it only dirtied one pan. The parsnips were tender and the pork took on a sweetness from the parsnips and the baked apple. My kind of dinner and low cal also at 360 calories per serving, this recipe serves four.
Parsnip's and Pork

4 pork loin or rib chops, about 1/2 inch thick
3 medium parsnips, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch slices
1 medium onion, slices
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 medium apple, cut into 1/4-inch wedges
2 tablespoons snipped parsley

Cook pork chops in 10 inch skillet over medium heat until brown on both sides. Place parsnips and onion on pork. Mix chicken broth, mustard, salt, allspice and pepper: pour over vegetables. Heat to boiling: reduce heat. Cover and simmer until pork is done, 35 to 40 minutes. Arrange apple on vegetables. Cover and cook just until apple is tender, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle with parsley.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Low Cal Wednesday

Every time I make something thinking it is summer it get cold again. I will admit I have not made ice cream or the likeness since I was a child. Since we had all of the indigents we gave this one a try. The man did not seem to be very impressed he would probably would of liked, a LIKE IT from Cold Stone Creamery with nothing on it plain 1200 cal. I on the other hand, would rather spend my calories on two desserts or another entree. Here is a fun and easy low cal dessert and pretty also. I found this recipe in an old Light & Tasty Magazine. One 1/2 cup serving equals 95 calories and a trace of fat you cant beat that. The color was just beautiful. I did make one little change that would lower the calories even more to the original recipe. I halved the sugar and put half honey.Don't you just want to pick up the spoon and take a bite. The mint freshens your breath with each bite.
Watermelon Berry Sorbet

1 cup water
1/4 sugar
1/4 honey
2 cups cubed seedless watermelon
2 cups fresh strawberries, hulled
1 tablespoon minced fresh mint

In a small heavy saucepan, bring the water and sugar and honey to a boil. Cook and stir until sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat; cool slightly.
Place the watermelon and strawberries in a blender or food processor; add sugar syrup. Cover and process for 2-3 minutes or until smooth. Strain and discard seeds and pulp. Transfer puree to a 13 in.x9-in. x 2-in. dish. Freeze for 1 hour or until edges begin to firm.
Stir in mint. Freeze 2 hours longer or until firm. Just before serving, transfer to a blender or food processor; cover and process for 2-3 minutes or until smooth.