Monthly Archives: August 2015

Creamy, Dreamy Tropical Smoothie

I got back from a work trip on Saturday morning and after flying all night and enduring a three hour layover in Atlanta on no sleep, I finally made it home only to be sick the entire weekend with food poisoning. For someone who likes to cook and eat, food poisoning is brutal. I already had no food in my fridge because I was gone all week which is just as well because the only thing I’ve been willing to get down is water. I still haven’t been able to get to the store or think about food yet and am going on my third day of little to no food. But as I’m starting to feel a little bit better, I’m considering (maybe) a smoothie. This is reminding me of this Creamy, Dreamy Tropical Smoothie I made before I left on my work trip. When I was feeling 100%, this was a perfectly cool summertime treat for these dog days of summer.

Frozen pineapple, Greek yogurt, coconut milk, and honey are blended together until smooth and creamy. A little topping of toasted unsweetened coconut finishes off this smoothie which really is like a drinking a sip of the tropics. Since I used frozen pineapple, I didn’t use ice but if using fresh pineapple, you’ll need the ice to thicken it up. Thinking about this smoothie, I’m dreaming of the days when I will be lakeside next week listening to the waves instead of home laying in my bed under the weather.

IMG_4939

Place pineapple, yogurt, coconut milk, ice, and honey in a blender. Process on high speed for 60 seconds or until smooth or desired consistency.

IMG_4937

Pour into tall glasses. Garnish each serving with 1 teaspoon toasted shredded coconut, if desired. Serve smoothies immediately.

IMG_4940

Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love it

Source: Cooking Light magazine

Slim Turkey Reubens

Who knew there was such a thing as turkey pastrami? Had I known this, I might have been trying to make Reubens a long time ago! There used to be a restaurant near me that served Rachaels – basically a Reuben but with turkey and coleslaw instead of pastrami and sauerkraut. It was my favorite sandwich there. I saw this recipe for Slim Turkey Reubens and knew immediately I needed to try to make it. I was a little worried about the sauerkraut since I’m not a fan but figured I’d give it a go. You never know, right?

Turkey pastrami, reduced-fat Swiss cheese, and sauerkraut is sandwiched between rye bread which is slathered with whole-grain mustard on one side and a yogurt-based Russian dressing on the other. The Russian dressing, made with yogurt, ketchup, pickles, and capers, was so flavorful and not at all tangy as Greek yogurt can be. Not being a sauerkraut or capers fan, I was a little skeptical. But I have to say, this sandwich ROCKS! And who knew that cooking spray could create such a beautifully golden toasted goodness? There are so many different flavors going on with the rye, the mustard, the sauerkraut, the cheese, the pickles, and the capers but where one might overpower a regular sandwich, all of these marry so perfectly together that it’s a perfect storm of flavor. Forget about Rachaels – I’m sold on these Reubens.

IMG_4857

In a small bowl, mix the yogurt, pickles, ketchup and capers to make Russian dressing; season with salt and pepper.

IMG_4851

Spread mustard on 4 slices of bread; top with the cheese, pastrami and sauerkraut. Spread the Russian dressing on the other 4 slices of bread. Add to the sandwiches, dressing side down.

IMG_4853

Heat a large skillet or griddle pan over medium. Coat both sides of the sandwiches with cooking spray. Working in two batches, cook the sandwiches, covered, until the cheese melts and the bread is toasted, 2 to 3 minutes per side.

IMG_4854

IMG_4855

Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine

Zucchini and Corn Chili

Sure, maybe the end of summer isn’t exactly the best time to be making chili. But when the main ingredients are zucchini and corn, why not make it in the summer when the produce is at it’s best? For someone like me who travels a lot for work, things like soups, stews and chilis are great to make in advance and store in the freezer so that when you come back from a road trip, a great meal cane be heated up in no time. This Zucchini and Corn Chili came together quickly, freezes beautifully, and is packed with healthy flavor.

Zucchini, corn and onion are cooked with chili powder and cumin before being mixed with canned tomatoes, black beans, vegetable stock, and poblano peppers. The peppers give this chili just enough of a kick while the spices provide that perfect chili flavor. The zucchini, corn and black beans make a great hearty combination in this vegetarian chili. When I’m gone for a week and tired from traveling, knowing that my refrigerator is empty, I’ll be happy to have this chili waiting in the freezer so I can relax and wait another day to do grocery shopping.

 IMG_4864

Char the poblano peppers either over an open flame on a gas burner or under the broiler. Place in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap until cool enough to handle, about 15 minutes. Peel, seed and dice the chiles.

IMG_4858

Cut the corn off the cobs. Heat a Dutch oven or other large pot over medium-high and add the oil. Add the corn and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, 2 to 4 minutes.

IMG_4859

Add the zucchini, onion, garlic, chili powder and cumin. Stir until the spices are toasted, about 2 minutes. S

IMG_4860

eason with salt and pepper, then stir in half the beans. In a medium bowl, mash the remaining beans with a fork; stir into the vegetables (this will help thicken the chili).

IMG_4861

Add the stock, tomatoes, honey and peppers. Cover and simmer until the flavors combine, 10 to 15 minutes.

IMG_4863

Stir in the cilantro and lime juice. Serve with your choice of toppings.

IMG_4865

Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love it

Source: Everyday with Rachael Ray magazine

Tamale Chicken Potpies

I’ve got more work travel coming up so I figured I better try to get a post or two in while I can. It’s amazing how quickly time flies when you are traveling. Doesn’t it seem that way when you are on vacation? You want to stop time but it just goes by too fast. Next thing you know, you are back at work. Traveling for work doesn’t always seem to go by so quick but then you wake up one day and all of the sudden realize the summer is almost over. How does this happen? I haven’t had a vacation all summer and I’m dying for some time off. Until then, I’ll just keep making some comfort food like this Tamale Chicken Potpies to help soothe my soul until I can sit by a beach somewhere with a book.

Ground chicken and onion are livened up with some cumin and chile powder before being mixed with some spicy diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, zucchini, and corn. The whole mixture simmers together and is spooned into ramekins (you could make this in one big dish too) where it’s topped with a creamy cornmeal mixture that’s made even better with some cheese. A short trip to the oven gets these little treats golden brown and perfectly bubbly. I love meals like this that are already portion controlled for me. The great thing about this recipe is that the chicken mixture is good enough alone. I had a little bit left over and warmed it up for a quick lunch one day. A perfect little meal. Maybe I can’t jet off to Mexico for some tamales, but I can close my eyes and pretend, right?

IMG_4658

Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion; sauté 3 minutes. Add chicken; cook 3 minutes, stirring to crumble. Stir in cumin, chili powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 1 minute.

IMG_4651

Add zucchini, corn, tomatoes, and tomato sauce; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 8 minutes, stirring occasionally. Divide chicken mixture evenly among 4 (10-ounce) ramekins coated with cooking spray. Place ramekins on a jelly-roll pan.

IMG_4656

Place remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, cornmeal, and 1/2 cup water in a medium bowl, stirring to combine. Bring remaining 1 cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan. Gradually add cornmeal mixture to pan; cook 3 minutes or until thickened, stirring frequently. Stir in 2 ounces cheese.

IMG_4654

IMG_4655

Divide cornmeal mixture evenly among ramekins. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 1 ounce cheese.

IMG_4657

Bake at 400°F for 15 minutes or until light golden brown.

IMG_4659

Additions: None

Omissions: None

Substitutions: None

Overall Rating: Love It

Source: Cooking Light magazine

%d bloggers like this: