Saturday, September 11, 2010

Don’t let the Goat Cheese get Ya...

     That’s right! Don’t let it intimidate you either! At approx. half the calories and fat for just the regular goat cheese too (try 80 calories and 5 g fat per 1 oz. vs. 80 FAT calories and 9-10 g fat per 1 oz. of oh so yummy cheddar cheese) this is quite a delicious treat to add flavor variety to all sorts of dishes. Today’s special? Farmer’s Market tomatoes served up Caprese style. At least that was what they called it in the restaurant, so I will make my version the with the same name too. Ultimate fav about this one? Not only is it so rediculously easy, but a major crowd pleaser, can double as just a side dish vs. appetizer, AND it tastes GREAT too.  Check out the bottom for another quick summer lovin’ but no oven “dish” perfect from those extra summer peaches you may not know what to do with too...

     Tomato and Goat Cheese Caprese

1 large heirloom tomato
2-3 sprigs basil, torn
1-2 tbsp goat cheese crumbles
5-8 pitted Kalamata olives
olive oil, balsamic vinegar and salt and pepper for drizzling

Slice the tomatoes and arrange on a platter, sprinkle torn basil, goat cheese crumbles, and olives. Drizzle olive oil, vinegar and salt and pepper and POOF, you are DONE!

     Grilled Peaches

2-4 peaches sliced in half and pitted
olive oil
balsamic vinegar if desired

Rub the peaches in oil, grill on a hot BBQ for 3-5 min. per side (make sure not to char ;o)
Serve with an extra splash of balsamic if desired.
PERFECT for a BBQ dinner one night, or as dessert with a little beat of cheese or cream to end an oh so good meal.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Jamaican Me Crazy Sweet Potatoes

     This dish is dedicated to my kids...mostly because they do make me crazy, but the contents of this meal pretty much rock in my book and are a little like my kids. Spicy, zippy, sweet, colorful, and the perfect blend of what really makes a dish de-lish. It can even totally pull off a summer or a winter dinner fix. I got the idea from the restaurant Claim Jumpers that I used to go to in Vegas with the hubs back when we had more money and were trying to wooo (sp?) each other. Then I found a version I liked on the internet, and altered it to my specs. Basically it is a baked sweet potato slathered in a sort of jamaican style jerk seasoned chicken and topped with some super yum mango salsa and a little drizzle of honey. You bet your boots it is too good to be true. And for all of you that just may be bored with what else to do for dinner, this one def. qualifies as a winner, and super easy meal that is even kid friendly (we just skip the spicy salsa and viola!)

     Check it... (also another great site for some fun recipes and cute stories of cooking in the kitchen)

Important Note; I will re-type below for the “just in case purposes”. Also, she calls for Papaya, I used mango since I have a ton from the farmers co-op here. I also did not use as much onion, basically cut it to 1/4 of an onion plus a small shallot because I HEART them...also used half a red pepper and a whole fresh jalepeno for serious kick. Adjust your amounts to fit your needs though and maybe even prepare earlier to sit for a few hours! I did at lunch while kids were eating (also letting the chicken marinate) so dinner was a snap once I threw it together. Love it.

Jamaican Sweet Potato

2 sweet potatoes (try to get the kind with orange flesh--they might technically be yams), baked until the skins are crisp and the flesh is tender (poke holes in the potatoes, spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt, cook directly on oven rack)

1 small white onion, diced (or 1/4 plus a shallot)
1 red bell pepper, diced (or 1/2)
1 large handful cilantro, chopped
1 fat clove garlic (or two small), minced
8 slices jarred jalapeno, minced (or one fresh one diced)
1 papaya (~1 lb), diced (or one mango)
2 tbsp lime juice (used 1 whole lime)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
(mix all these together, refrigerate until needed)

2 6-oz chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces
1 tbsp onion powder
2 tsp dried thyme
2 tsp sugar
2 tsp dried chives
2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp black pepper
1/8-1/4 tsp cayenne
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
(mix all spices together, coat chicken pieces w/extra virgin olive oil then the spice mixture, you can let marinate til ready to use, then cook chicken in skillet w/a little more olive oil)

green onions

To assemble:
When potatoes are done, cut them open and add about 1 tbsp butter (optional); top with salsa and chicken; add green onions; drizzle with honey

Monday, September 6, 2010

My Fab Find of the Week

     Actually, this isn’t even my find at all, once again my nutrition oriented mother-in-law health guru sent this on to me. And I wasn’t even going to watch it...but I did. Perhaps out of shear boredom, or curiosity! Either way, I am sooo glad that I took those precious 4 and 1/2 minutes out of my day to be reminded of why health and nutrition is so important to me (tiny overtones of sarcasm here). Obviously I am not fully committed like the folks in this little clip, maybe I should be though as I did have a scare or two with some of the gestational diabetes tests that were required at one point in this pregnancy. I felt a little fire ignite again my passion for helping people, showing them a different way to eat and live healthy doing it. Enough passion that maybe I will forgo second helpings at dinner, or that leftover double chocolate brownie in the freezer I couldn’t help but notice today when I was scanning the frozen shelves for some miraculous meal idea to hit me. And maybe it will inspire you too. Tell me your foodie it a crock? Can this type of an eating reality be reached? Lend me your words, and maybe we’ll experiment together... Reverse Diabetes in 30 Days

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