Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup

This is a gorgeous and flavorful fall soup. Even though it is very creamy, thanks to blending, there is no cream in it except the soup cream you garnish it with. Fresh ginger and a pinch of cayenne give it that touch of warm that is perfect for colder winter.
Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup
Wouldn't that make a beautiful starter for Thanksgiving? Or just great meal with some bread on a busy weeknight? It is really complimented with rolls or pretzels with poppy seeds on them. You can make this ahead of time too since I think it was even better a day or two later.

Creamy Cauliflower and Red Lentil Soup

1 T unsalted butter
1 T olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 T fresh peeled, minced ginger
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small head of cauliflower, chopped (about 2 - 2 1/2 cups)
1 c red lentils
6 c water
1 t ground mustard
1 t coriander
2 t turmeric
pinch or two of cayenne
salt
sour cream

In a large heat pot heat the butter and olive oil over medium hight heat. Add the onion and ginger. Sauté until the onion is starting to become translucent. Add all the remaining ingredients except the salt and sour cream. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 20 - 30 minutes, until the vegetables and lentils are tender. Use an immersion blender, blender or food processor to blend to desired creaminess. We got our almost blended, but left a few chunks of vegetables for texture. Salt to taste.

Serve garnished with sour cream.

Makes 6 servings.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Thai-Inspired Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup

This was another dish inspired by leftovers and what was in the fridge. Basically, I had some roast chicken that needed to be used up, plus a head of cabbage. I don't know why, but that just seemed like a start to an Asian soup to me. Add the fact, I had some fresh ginger and my path was clear.
Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup
The ingredient that really makes this dish is the Thai Sweet Chili Sauce. It gives it a wonderful sweet and spicy flavor (very mildly spicy). A touch of lime juice added a little but of needed sour. What you end up with is a different take on a comforting chicken noodle soup that has a great fresh, almost lightness, to it.

Thai-Inspired Chicken, Cabbage and Noodle Soup
4 c chicken stock
1 t minced fresh ginger
2 green onions, sliced, white and green parts separated
1 carrot, sliced thin
3 T Thai sweet chili sauce
1/2 t soy sauce
2 t lime juice
2 c cooked chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces
small cabbage, cored and cut into approximately 2 inch piece, about 2 - 3 cups
3 - 4.5 oz thin rice sticks (3 for 2 servings and 4.5 for 3)
salt

In large soup pot, stir together the stock, ginger, white part of the green onions, carrots, Thai sweet chili sauce, soy sauce and lime juice. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the carrots soften slightly. Add chicken and cabbage. Cook until cabbage wilts a little. Taste for salt and add if needed.

Meanwhile put the rice sticks into a heat proof bowl, I like to break them up a little. Cover with boiling water. Let sit for about 8 - 10 minutes until the noodles are softened, stirring occasionally.

Drain the noodles and divide between bowls. Pour soup on top of the noodles. Sprinkle with green onion greens.

Makes 2 very large or 3 smaller servings (Matt and I ate almost the whole thing ourselves, but it could have easily been divided between 3.)


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Leftover Chili Mac

It's Monday night and Matt and I haven't been to the grocery store in over a week. Time to see what I can create for dinner from the fridge and pantry. There's some leftover chili that needs to be eaten, but there isn't enough for two servings. What to turn it into?
Leftover Chili Mac
I also had some pasta and cheese (well, Velveeta, so kind of cheese), so decided to try a chili mac. This went over really well with Matt. It was cheesy and creamy. I'm torn a little on the beans in it, because there texture is a bit like the pasta, but Matt really liked them in it. It was definitely a good use of the leftover chili.

Leftover Chili Mac

1 1/2 c leftover chili (mine was a beef and black bean chili)
6 oz mild melting cheese (I used Velveeta, because there was some lingering in the fridge)
1 T milk, cream or half & half
pinch dry mustard
1 T all-purpose flour (optional)
8 oz cooked pasta (I used penne, but short pasta that holds sauce well is good.)
sharper cheddar cheese (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F.

Heat the chili. Cut the 6 oz of cheese into small pieces and melt into the chili. Stir in the milk and dry mustard. Now comes the optional part. My sauce was a little thinner than the cheese sauce I like to use for mac and cheese, so I whisked in the flour. I simmered the sauce while stirring for a few minutes until it was nice and thick. The chili you start with will really decided this for you.

Mix the sauce with the cooked pasta and pour into a casserole. Grate a little sharp cheddar over the top.

Bake uncovered for 25 minutes.
Leftover Chili Mac

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Scenes from the MN State Fair 2013

Thanks to dreadfully hot weather, we almost didn't make it out to the State Fair this year. Luckily, the last two days the temps dropped into the 70's, perfect weather for looking at livestock and eating fried food. After a lot of bad reviews on Heavy Table, we didn't bother to try all the new foods this year. Some we wanted to try had crazy long lines (the day we went broke the all time attendance record). So, we had a nice mix of new items, classic foods and a few new to use things.
Mini Donuts Cheese Curds and Coffee
Breakfast was for the classics, Tom Thumb mini donuts, fried cheese curds, and just to make it a little more breakfasty, a latte.
IMG_8783
We topped that off with a Double from Harry Singh's, fried bread sandwiching curried chickpeas and chutney. This was taste and a break from fried foods.
IMG_8784
My Goldy Gopher mittens were on display, but I didn't take home a ribbon this year.
Pronto Pup
Matt need a Prono Pup with mustard. I still don't get the appeal of these, it just tastes like a hotdog covered in dough cornbread to me.
Luminarium Luminarium
I was skeptical, but the Luminarium was actually really cool. Bet it was the place to be during the hot days since they use cold air to keep it inflated.
Comet Corn Comet Corn
Comet corn was fun and tasty. Carmel puffcorn is coated in PCP (parmesan, cheddar and pretzels) and then dipped in liquid nitrogen. It's a cold treat, but it's popcorn and it's smoking.
Candied Bacon Canolli
We'd never tried Ollie's Cannoli's before, but had heard they were really good. This year they offered one with candied bacon which both of us tried. This is a really good cannoli, crunchy and sweet. Not sure the bacon added than much and next time I might just go more traditional.
Hawaiian Dog
Loved the Hawaiian dog, pizza dough wrapped around ham and pineapple and cooked golden brown. Perfect with a side of mustard.
Barrel Racing Piglets
A little break from eating to watch some women's barrel racing and visit the Miracle of Birth barn.
Izzy's Mini Donut Batter Crunch Ice Cream
Then we found Izzy's Mini Donut Batter Crunch Ice Cream. Izzy's is our neighborhood ice cream parlor and we love their ice cream. This one was good, but I'm not sure I would have known it was mini donut without being told. I mainly tasted cinnamon. Of course it came with an Izzy's scoop on top, so we paired it with Salted Caramel.
Chickens Chickens
Then we headed for a glass of Lift Bridge's Mini Donut Beer. Guess we shouldn't have waited until 2:30 since they were already sold out for the day! Ah well, we just contented ourselves with looking at the unusual chickens and headed home.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Dim Sum on a Stick

We are in the midst of a record breaking heatwave here in Minneapolis. Temps in the 90's with high humidity have not made going to the State Fair very attractive. But, but we need our food on a stick! Luckily, one of our local restaurants, Haute Dish, is offering a food on a stick menu served dim sum style until August 29th in air conditioned comfort.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Fourteen incredible bites on a stick all under $5 (cheaper than most food at the Fair actually), we had to try all of them! Each table was given a serving dish with holes in it for the sticks to stand in. Servers circled the restaurant with the different dishes throughout the evening. (Please excuse the bad, low light cell phone pics.)
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Matt flashed the broken finger sign behind our first three dishes, tomatoes & melon, chicken liver bon bons and spicy scallop handrolls. (In case you are wondering, he caught his finger in the door of the car.) That was followed by a mini gyro (good, but maybe the weakest of the dishes of the night).
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The next two dishes were amazing! Caesar Salad on a stick was a fried piece of brioche with melted cheese in the middle topped with a chicken drumette and a pickled anchovy. The richness paired with the pickling was perfect. Then it was the Carrot Corndog, a sous vide carrot coated in classic corndog breading with sweet peppers and a sriracha sauce. If we hadn't been told it was a carrot, we would have sworn it was a hot dog, the texture was perfect!
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The servers called the next dish the most unusual, a foie gras lollypop edged with pop rocks. A fun pairing of rich and sweet with the special pop. The egg in gelee had a great texture and flavor especially for fans of head cheese like me. That baby corn done elote with a cheese, salty sauce was so good we ordered another round.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
The chili and cornbread was a surprise. How they got real saucy chili into a fried square of cornbread crust I'll never know. Then came what Matt called the star of the whole meal, the BBQ Octopus. The Asian glaze with sesame seeds coated super tender octopus. We were told the octopus was sous vided for 12 hours before it went on the grill. If we weren't so full, we would have had another round of this.
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
A mini oyster po-boy was done very classically with perfectly fried, cornbread crusted oysters. The mix of textured in this one was great. Our last dish was a classic steak tartar topped with grated egg and rolled in cucumber (one of our favorites for their regular menu).
Dim Sum on a Stick at Haute Dish
Everything ended with an ice cream sandwich on a stick, banana walnut ice cream between two chocolate cookies topped with a chocolate covered banana slice and a little peanut butter powder. I love frozen chocolate covered bananas and this sandwich tasted like just like a perfectly ripe banana dipped in dark chocolate.

Matt and I had such a great time trying all the different dishes and enjoying our "fair food" without the crowds and heat. (Ok, we'll probably still go to the fair before it ends Labor Day.) If you are in the Twin Cities area we highly recommend you get your yearly dose of food on a stick at Haute Dish.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Friday, July 19, 2013

Paulette Bakery

As I mentioned in my last post, we are in the midst of selling our house and moving into a loft downtown. The process of selling with showings and inspections has us in and out of the house at all hours. And the process of setting up a new place has us sitting around a practically empty space waiting for deliveries. This morning we had to be at the new place for an early morning mattress delivery and then stay out of the old house until afternoon while the prospective new owner looks at buying some of our furniture. I have to say it is all getting a little old and it was a struggle to get up at 6am this morning to head out. Luckily, the site of the Paulette Bakery truck in our new neighborhood made my day.
Paulette's Bakery Truck
Oh yes, fresh baked French pastries and hot Peace coffee waiting for me on the corner! I think I practically ran to it.
Paulette's Chocolate Croissant
I deserve to forget the diet for one morning and sink my teeth into this beautiful chocolate croissant. It was so light and SO buttery. You can really taste the quality of the butter used. Two soft, dark ribbons of chocolate run through the inside making it even more decadent. Best of all, she is in our neighborhood twice a week, plenty of time for us to try the almond and savory versions.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Curry Turkey Pasta Salad and an Update

Where oh, where have we been? Well, we have been continuing our diets, which doesn't always lead to the most exciting of menus. That said, the diet has been going well, Matt is down 34 pounds and I am down 23. I'm not saying we don't still eat well, just not as many fun things to share.

On top of that, we have just gone into contract on a new kitchen...

Ok, not just a kitchen, but the whole loft around it. We are selling our house and moving into Minneapolis's downtown North Loop neighborhood. We are looking forward to being in a walkable neighborhood surrounded by restaurants like Sapor, Borough, Bachelor Farmer, Smack Shack, Black Sheep Pizza, 112 Eatery, Bar La Grassa, and Be'wiched, just to name a few. Uh oh, there goes that diet!
Curry Turkey Pasta Salad
With getting the house cleaned up, preparing for a garage sale and finding a new place to buy, we are looking for quick, satisfying meals these days. Over the weekend we roasted a turkey with friends, so we decided to turn the leftovers into a pasta salad. (You could easily do this with chicken too.) Curry powder gives this salad lots of flavor, carrots and celery add a crunch and golden raisins provide a perfect touch of sweetness. We use light mayo and non-fat yogurt to keep the calories low.

Curry Turkey Pasta Salad

4oz pasta
1 t cider vinegar
4 oz roasted turkey, chopped
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1/4 c chopped red onion
2 T golden raisins
2 T plain non-fat yogurt
3 T light mayonaise
2 T skim milk
1 T mild curry powder
salt

Cook the pasta according to directions. Drain and rinse with cold water. Put into a bowl and stir in vinegar. Let sit a few minutes to cool an absorb vinegar.

Mix everything but the salt into the pasta. Taste and add salt as needed.

Chill covered for at least an hour.

2 servings
About 430 calories per serving

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Friday, April 19, 2013

Spanish Chorizo Fried Rice

The other night Matt had a meeting leaving me on my own for dinner. I was craving some rice, so I went looking through the fridge and freezer to find things to add to it. What I came up with was this mix of Spanish and Asian flavors.
Chorizo Fried Rice
I have to tell you this really worked. The smoked paprika flavor of the sausage worked so well with the sweetness of the peas. I kept the sauce simple, just some salty soy and sweet/hot chili sauce. The sausage also a nice chewy texture. I can't want to make this for Matt now.

Spanish Chorizo Fried Rice
Make sure to get a Spanish and not Mexican chorizo for this dish. The Spanish version is a hard sausage link.

1/4 dry white rice, like jasmine or basmati
1 t olive oil
1 oz Spanish chorizo, cut into small pieces
1 c frozen sugar snap peas
1/2 t soy sauce
1 t sweet chili sauce
1 large egg

Cook the rice and let it sit in the open air for a little bit to dry out. You don't have to do this, but it gives it a nice texture in the finished dish.

In a skillet or wok, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the chorizo and sauté for about a minute. Add the peas and cooked rice. Cook until the the peas are warmed through, stirring occasionally. Stir in the soy sauce and chili sauce. Move the rice mixture to the side and crack the egg in the middle of the pan. Stir, breaking the yoke and blending. As the egg set stir into the rest of the dish.

1 serving
Approximately 486 calories


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Mayan Pork

I have been meaning to tell you guys about our Easter dinner for awhile now. We had pork, but not your typical Easter ham. Instead we went south of the border for a Mayan-inspired pork.
Mayan Pork
I was recently introduced to pork cooked with annatto at our favorite breakfast place, Blackbird. Matt had it as part of a breakfast taco and let me have a little bite. It was so good, I said we needed to try making it at home.

Annatto is the seed of the achiote tree that is commonly used in Latin American and Caribbean cooking. It is also used for it red color to dye cheeses and make food coloring. This stuff is red, so watch out when you are using it. You can find it at Hispanic groceries and a spice stores like Penzeys. The annatto seed has a slightly nutty, floral, peppery flavor, it is really perfect paired with the acidity of citrus. It really gives pork a fresh, bright flavor.
Mayan Pork
We served it over hot rice the first night and then had the leftovers as tacos with just some red onion. It really doesn't need much else.

Mayan Pork
We made this in a pressure cooker, but you could also do it in a crock pot or slow cook it in the oven or on the stove top. Your cooking time will increase to a couple of hours instead of 45 minutes.

4 cloves garlic
1 T annatto seeds, ground (you can also use ground annatto)
1/2 t ground cumin
1/2 t Mexican oregano
1/2 t allspice
1 1/2 lbs pork loin, cut into chunks
juice of one grapefruit juice
1 t olive oil
1 1/2 c chopped onion
1 14.5 oz can tomatoes

With a mortar and pestle, crush the garlic cloves. Add the annatto, cumin, oregano and allspice and grind into a paste. Rub all over the pork pieces. Put in a sealable bag with the grapefruit juice. Let marinade for 4 - 5 hours.

Sauté the onion in the olive oil until translucent. Add the onions, tomato, pork and 1 cup of the marinade. Cook in a pressure cooker on medium for 45 minutes. Pork should be very tender.

6 servings
Approximately 174 calories per serving

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Stout and Sausage Pasta

The current issue of Cooking Light (a magazine which has really been great while we are counting calories) has a section on Macaroni and Cheese dishes. This dish is adapted from one of those recipes.
Stout and Sausage Pasta
I am not calling it a mac and cheese because really it doesn't have much cheese flavor. That is because we replaced the Velveeta in the recipe with cream cheese. Why did we make the replacement? Well, we don't really use Velveeta, so it seemed like a waste to buy it to just use 1oz. Cream cheese on the other hand has become an ingredient in a lot of our dishes lately. We use the light version and add it to mexican dishes and pasta for a creamy sauce with less calories.

In this pasta the beer is really a prominent flavor, so I don't recommend it if you aren't a fan of stouts. The beer flavor really pairs well with the Italian sausage. Our sausage was a little mild and I found myself wishing for one that was a little heavier with the spices to stand up to the stout. The sauce is creamy, with just a touch of cheese making this a very satisfying dish.

Stout and Sausage Pasta
4 oz pasta (we used a medium shell, but you could use rotini or penne or even elbows.)
1 t olive oil
2 oz bulk Turkey Italian sausage
1/3 c onion, diced
1 1/4 T all-purpose flour
1/4 t pepper
pinch of salt
1/2 c stout
2 1/2 T skim milk
1 1/4 oz reduced-fat cheddar
1 oz light cream cheese

Preheat oven to 450F.

Cook the pasta to al dente, drain and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a sauce pan over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and onion. Sauté until the sausage is cooked through. Reduce heat to medium. Sprinkle with the flour, salt and pepper. Cook while stirring for 1 minute. Slowly stir in the stout. Bring to a boil. Stir until thicken, this should happen pretty quickly for such a small amount. Remove from heat and add the milk and cheeses. Stir until melted. You may need to add some low heat if everything doesn't melt.

Stir in the pasta. You can divide between two small ramekins like we did or just put in one larger casserole dish. Bake for 10 minutes.

Makes 2 servings.
417 calories per serving


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Indian Chicken Pizza

Pizza is one of those things that can be a little tricky to fit in when you are counting your calories. The killer is the crust. We had gotten lazy and were using a very good store bought dough, but after looking at the calories I knew that wasn't going to work anymore. Our homemade crust is a little better and we usually just top it with fresh tomatoes, a few slices of pepperoni and mozzarella. Matt wanted a change up, so since we had some leftover roast chicken, an Indian pizza seems in order.
Indian Chicken Pizza
The trick was to create a sauce that wasn't too high in calories but still full of flavor. We used some canned tomatoes as the base and then layered in the flavors of garam masala and ginger. Yogurt and just a touch of half and half give it some creaminess. I thought the yogurt would have enough tartness, but a little lemon juice added just the right about of freshness and acidity which I think is a good counterpoint to the garam masala.

This was a great treat, and at 700 calories a serving it is a treat. Still, you do get half a pizza here which is a lot of food. I think you could serve 3 people with it really which would cut the calories down to 467.

Indian Chicken Pizza

1 c crushed or diced tomatoes
1 t tomato paste
1 t half & half (you can use cream or milk I just had half and half on hand)
4 oz plain non-fat yogurt
1/4 t lemon juice
1/4 t ground ginger
1/2 t garam masala
salt
1/2 c sliced red onion
2 T chopped cilantro
4 oz cooked chicken meat, chopped or shredded
4 oz part-skim mozzarella, grated

1 pizza crust (We use 1/2 of this recipe from Wisebread to make one pizza. It makes a wet dough, but we find that gives the best texture. Resist the urge to add too much extra flour.)

Preheat oven to 450F.

In a food processor or small chopper, puree the tomatoes with the tomato paste. Stir in the half & half, yogurt, lemon juice, ginger, garam masala and a pinch of salt. Taste and adjust seasoning as needed. (I thought the garam masala tasted a little strong, but cooked with the other ingredients it was perfect.)

Spread your dough out on a baking sheet sprayed with a cooking spray. Top with sauce, onion, chicken, cilantro and mozzarella.

Bake until the crust is brown and the cheese is melted and bubbly.

Makes 2 servings (about 8 slices of pizza, it could easily become 3 servings)
The pizza crust is about 391 calories per serving. The toppings are about 310 per serving.

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Sweet Chili Brussels Sprouts

We tend to get into a real rut with side dishes, typically leaning towards a steamed green vegetable or roasted root vegetables. So, when we were figuring out what to have with a roast chicken this week Matt said he wanted different. We remembered the brussels sprouts Matt's mom had served at Thanksgiving, that everyone loved, and decided to try to replicate them.
Sweet Chili Brussels Sprouts
Actually, it ends up these were super easy to make and super tasty too. The chili sauce give the brussels sprout the perfect mix of sweet and sour flavor. A touch of soy sauce cuts through the sweetness a bit. Make sure to cook the sprouts until golden brown to bring out their nutty flavor.

Sweet Chili Brussels Sprouts

1/2 T olive oil
3 c brussels sprouts
1 T sweet chili sauce
1/2 T soy sauce

Stir the sweet chili sauce and soy sauce together, set aside. In a large skillet or wok, heat the oil over high heat. Add the brussel sprouts. Stir while cooking until the sprouts are golden brown. Remove from the heat and stir in the sauce mixture.

Makes 2 servings
Approximately 110 calories per serving

We served the brussels sprouts with a serving of forbidden rice and 3 oz of chicken for a 420 calorie dinner. This was one of those meals where everything tasted really good mixed together.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Monday, March 25, 2013

Smoked Salmon Pasta

Here's a pasta that comes together in about 15 minutes and yet is still nice enough to serve to guests. It was a great busy Sunday night dinner for us.
Smoked Salmon Pasta
A good deal of the flavor in this dish comes from the smoked salmon, so I would suggest getting the a good one. Or you could smoke your own like we do. The rest of the dish is composed of classic salmon pairings; cream cheese, capers, red onion and dill. It's creamy with a little crunch from the onions and briny bited from the capers. We use skim milk and light cream cheese to keep the calories around 400 a serving, but we don't lose any of the creamy richness.

Smoked Salmon Pasta

4 oz medium shell pasta
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 c chopped red onion
2 t all-purpose flour
1/2 c skim milk
2 oz light cream cheese
4 oz smoked salmon, flaked
2 t capers (Matt thought the amount was just right, I'd add more next time)
2 T chopped fresh dill

Cook the pasta according to directions.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until translucent. Sprinkle in the flour, cook while stirring for 1 minute. Slowly stir in the milk until slightly thickened and bubbly. Turn heat down to low and stir in the cream cheese until melted. Add the salmon and capers. Stir and cook until everything is hot.

When the pasta is done, stir about 1/2 cup (use more or less to get the sauce to a consistency you like) of the pasta water into the sauce. Drain the pasta and stir into the sauce.

Serve with dill sprinkled over the top.

Makes 2 servings
Approximately 415 calories per serving


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Thursday, February 28, 2013

A Lighter Cocktail

Alcohol is one of those things we've cut back on since we've decided to count our calories. We haven't given it up completely, but it's now a treat once or twice a week. Matt is typically happy with a beer, but I like a refreshing Gin and Tonic (with Hendrick's Gin, of course). The problem is tonic is quite high in calories. Sure I could use a diet tonic, but have you tasted diet tonic? It's really gross and I don't like the chemicals used in diet sodas. (It's hard enough to find a regular tonic water that doesn't contain high fructose corn syrup.) Then I discovered this at World Market.

This tonic has only 49 calories per 8oz serving (about 45% less than regular tonic)and uses fruit sugars as a sweetener. Their regular tonic contains 9g of sugar while this one only has 4.8g. Best of all it taste great. I would drink this even if I wasn't watching my calories.

Let's face it a cocktail is never going to be diet food, but now I've found an easier way to work one into my day.

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Dal with Kale

Things continue to go well on our "diet." We are learning to portion better, lighten our existing recipes and are trying lots of new ones too. We are seeing some success too, Matt has lost 17 pounds and I'm down 8. Not too bad for 6 weeks in.

This is a new dish for us to make. Matt ordered some Bob's Red Mill Red Lentils after trying a Campbell's Golden Lentil with Madras Curry Soup. He loved the flavor of the soup wanted to experiment with making his own versions. This one is much more stew than soup, but had the flavors he was looking for.
Dal with Kale
Matt made his own curry seasoning for this dish. I think it was an excuse to use things like the charnushka he picked up at Penzeys. The flavor was really great and it made the house smell amazing. You get a lot of very satisfying food for the calories with this dish. Plus it made great lunch leftovers.

Dal with Kale
1 c red lentils
14 oz can crushed or diced tomatoes
1 t turmeric
1/2 T olive oil
1 c chopped yellow onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t mustard seed
1/2 t black onion seeds (charnushka)
1/2 t ground fenugreek
1/2 t ground cumin
1/2 t ground coriander
4 oz chopped kale leaves, blanched for 1 minute in the microwave
salt

Put the lentils, 2 1/2 c water, tomatoes and turmeric and a large pot. Bring to a simmer. Cover, but leave the cover open slightly. Let cook for 30 minutes or until the lentils are done.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sauté until it starts to get translucent. Add the garlic and sauté for one more minute.

Crush the mustard and onion seeds to a powder. Add to the onion and garlic with the remaining spices. Sauté a minute or two until fragrant. Add to the lentil mixture. Stir in the kale and heat through. Taste for seasoning and add salt as needed.

Makes 5 servings at 183 calories per serving.
We served it with jasmine rice at 160 calories per serving and chicken samosas from Trader Joe's.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Chicken and Olive Stew

I was looking through the freezer the other day to see how many chickens I had left when I stumbled on a package of boneless chicken thighs. I pulled them out with the idea of doing some sort of one pot, Mediterranean-influenced dish.
Chicken and Olives
The star of this dish ended up being the Kalamata olives, their brininess just adds a brightness to the sauce. Enhanced with a little white wine, fresh thyme and some garlic, it makes me think of warmer climates, but is still perfect for a cold winter Minnesota night.

Chicken and Olive Stew

1/2 T olive oil
4 boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into large pieces
1 c chopped yellow onion
1 clove garlic, minced
2 T white wine
1 T white wine vinegar
1 14.5 oz can crushed or diced tomatoes
15 pitted Kalamata olives, cut in half
1 t fresh thyme
1/4 t dried parsley
salt & pepper

In a heavy pot, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and brown on all sides. Add the onion and sauté until translucent. Stir in the garlic and sauté for 1 more minute. Add the wine, vinegar, tomatoes, olive, thyme and parsley. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 10 - 15 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the top and let simmer until the sauce has reduced. Taste for seasoning adding salt and pepper as needed.

Serve over hot rice or noodles.

Makes 3 servings
332 calories per serving without rice or noodles (You can reduce the calories by using chicken breasts instead of thighs, but we like the flavor of thigh.)

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Tomatillo Chicken and Rice

We roasted a chicken last week, so there was lots of leftover chicken to use in other dinners. One of my go-to dishes for leftover chicken is enchiladas. Well, I took one look at the calories in a tortilla and knew that was out right now. I decided to make a hot dish that would gives us the same flavors with less calories.
Tomatillo Chicken and Rice
You know, hot dishes are just never the prettiest thing to photograph, but they rate high on the comfort food scale. This one has such great flavor from the tomatillo sauce. We make our own oven roasted sauce, but you could use a store bought sauce or even salsa. The rice is baked in the oven allowing it to absorb the flavors of the sauce. This definitely filled the bill for the flavor I was craving and was so incredibly filling. We served it with a few tortilla chips.

Tomatillo Chicken and Rice
If you've got leftover cooked chicken this dish is a very easy one dish meal.

1 cooked chicken breast, chopped
1 c tomatillo sauce
3/4 c frozen sweet corn
1/2 c jasmine or white rice, uncooked
1 oz colby jack cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 355 F.

In a small baking dish, mix the chicken, tomatillo sauce, corn, rice and 1 cup water.
Cover with foil.

Bake for 30 minutes until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid and is soft. Remove the foil and sprinkle the cheese over the top. Bake uncovered another 10 -15 minutes.

2 servings
Approximately 390.5 calories per serving, your tomatillo sauce may change this.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Pork with Tart Balsamic Cherries

With only two people in the house, Matt and I have to think when we are shopping and planning meals how we are going to use ingredients that come in larger sizes without a lot of waste. Can something be used in more than one meal that week, like a whole chicken? Should we make a larger dish and have leftovers for lunches? Can we cut it up and freeze the rest to use later?

We did the later with a pork tenderloin that we picked up last week. Matt weighed it and cut it into three pieces, each piece enough for two servings. So, that way we were only cooking exactly what we needed. This is great if you are watching your calories, because there are no leftovers to tempt you into a second helping.
Pork with Tart Balsamic Cherries
This dish really felt like a special night dinner, even though Matt prepared it quickly in one pan. The tartness of the cherries, along with the depth of the balsamic, adds so much flavor to the pork. You definitely want to use tart, not sweet cherries, in this dish.

Pork with Tart Balsamic Cherries

1/2 T olive oil
8 oz pork tenderloin, cut into 4 medallions
1/2 c sliced yellow onion
1/2 c dried tart cherries
2 T balsamic vinegar
1 t Dijon mustard

In a skillet, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the pork cook on one side for about 4 minutes. Flip the pork over and add the remaining ingredients. Cover, reduce heat to low and cook for about another 10 minutes, until the pork is cooked through and the onions and cherries have soften. Uncover and simmer until the sauce is reduced and thickened to a consistency you like.

2 servings
322 calories per serving.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski

Monday, January 14, 2013

White Bean and Ham Soup

We picked up a new toy for the kitchen this weekend, something that Matt has been thinking about and researching for a little while.
New toy
It's a Breville Fast Slow Cooker. What the heck does that mean? Well, it's a slow cooker, but also a pressure cooker, and a steamer, plus it apparently makes the fluffiest rice ever. Oh and unlike other slow cookers, you can sauté and sear ingredients in it before starting the slow cooking (love this, no getting another pan dirty). Matt has been wanting a pressure cooker, but I just felt like it was another kitchen appliance to store. He sold me on this one because it can do some many things and take the place of a couple other appliances in the cupboard.

Matt's boss has one and says it makes the most amazing soups, so that is where we started.
White Bean and Ham Soup
This is a pretty basic ham and bean soup just using the leftover ham bone from Christmas and dry Rancho Gordo Yellow Eye beans. We threw everything in the machine, set the pressure cooker for medium and let it go for 30 minutes. I have to say I was dubious about the beans cooking in 30 minutes. (We had a few first timer problems, like "someone" couldn't stop himself from touching it which let out all the pressure and we had to start over part way in.) The end result was pretty amazing though, a rich soup with perfectly cooked bean. We didn't even use stock as the base. So, I would say the first experiment was pretty darn successful and homemade soup in 30 minutes that tastes like it cooked for hours is quite a treat.

White Bean and Ham Soup
We did this in a pressure cooker, but you can easily make it in a slow cooker or on the stove, it'll just take longer

ham bone with meat on it
1 c chopped yellow onion
1 c chopped celery
1 c diced carrot
1 c dry yellow beans (or other white bean)
1 garlic clove, minced
2 bay leaves
2 T chopped fresh parsley
salt and pepper

Cut the excess meat off the ham bone. Chop and set aside. We got about 5 oz of meat from ours. You'll put the bone in your soup.

Put everything except the parsley in your pressure cooker, slow cooker or large soup pan. Add 6 cups of water. In a pressure cooker, set to medium and cook 30 minutes. In a slow cooker set to high and let cook 4 - 6 hours (until beans are soft). On the stove, bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and let simmer for about 3 hours, until the beans are tender.

Remove the ham bone. Stir in the parsley and reserved ham. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed.

Makes 5 servings
183 calories per serving (will vary based on the amount of ham meat you put in your soup.


If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at http://agoodappetite.blogspot.com OR at http://agoodappetite.com then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted. © 2007-2013 Kathy Lewinski
Related Posts with Thumbnails

Get Email Updates!

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Measurement Abbreviations

T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon
c = cup
lb = pound
oz - ounce

Labels

Blog Archive

Contributors