Friday, October 19, 2012

Two and a half year anniversary!

October 14th, 2012 was my two and a half year anniversary of my healthy lifestyle. I've learned a lot over the past two and half years.  I have learned that I can control food, it does not control me unless I let it.  I have learned that I am a lot stronger than I ever thought I was, both mentally and physically.  I feel like I have made a difference in several peoples lives by sharing my story and hope to continue to motivate and inspire others.  =)

Tuskinny Chicken-Looneyspoons Cookbook

1 T. olive oil
12 boneless skinless chicken thighs (I used 6 chicken breasts, cut into strips and halved the recipe)
1 1/2 C. coarsely chopped red onions
2 tsp. minced garlic
3 C. sliced mushrooms
1 medium zucchini, sliced
1 large yellow bell pepper, sliced
2 T. each minced fresh basil leaves, oregano leaves and rosemary, or 1 1/2 tsp. each dried
1 jar (22 ounces) of your favorite tomato pasta sauce
1/2 cup dry white wine (I used chicken broth)
1 C. canned no-salt-added chickpeas or white kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1/4 C. grated Romano or Parmesan cheese

Heat olive oil in a large deep non-stick skillet over medium high heat.  Add chicken and cook until chicken is lightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes on each side.  Remove chicken from skillet and keep warm. 
Add onions and garlic to the same skillet.  Cook and stir until onions begin to soften, about 3 minutes.  Be careful not to burn them.  Add mushrooms, zucchini and yellow pepper.  Cook and stir until vegetables are tender-crisp, about 6 more minutes.  Stir in herbs and cook for 1 more minute.
Add pasta sauce, wine, chickpeas and black pepper.  Bring mixture to a boil.  Reduce heat to medium-low.  Return chicken pieces to skillet.  Cover and simmer for 20 minutes.  Uncover and cook an additional 10 minutes. (This will help thicken the sauce).  remove from heat and let the dish stand, uncovered, for another 5 minutes to cool slightly.  
Serve, topped with a sprinkling of grated Romano cheese.
I served this with green beans and broccoli.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Slow cooked Pork

1 boneless whole pork loin roast (3 1/2-4 lbs.)
1 T. canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 celery rib, cut into 1 inch pieces (I used mushrooms instead)
1 envelope brown gravy mix
1 cup water
1 cup unsweetened apple juice
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Cut roast in half.  In a large skillet, brown roast in oil on all sides.  Transfer to a 5 quart slow cooker.  In the same skillet, saute onion and celery until tender.  Add to slow cooker

In a small bowl, whisk together gravy mix and water.  Stir in remaining ingredients.  Pour over pork.  Cover and cook on low for 5-6 hours or until meat is tender.  Skim fat from cooking juices.  Thicken if desired.  Serve with roast.

I served this with asparagus and spaghetti squash.  The leftover pork makes great sandwiches or used on tortillas.  

Melancauli Baby-Cauliflower soup-Looneyspoons cookbook

1 T. olive oil or butter
2 Cups thinly slicked leeks (about 2 large)
2 tsp. minced garlic
4 Cups small, cauliflower florets
1 1/2 Cups peeled, cubed sweet potato
1 1/2 tsp. curry powder
1 tsp. ground cumin
4 Cups reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 Cup cooked brown and wild rice blend ( I just used brown rice )
1 Cup 2% evaporated milk ( I used almond milk )
1/2 Cup packed shredded light Swiss cheese 

Heat butter or olive oil in large pot over medium heat.  Add leeks and garlic.  Cook and stir until leeks begin to soften, about 3 minutes.

Stir in cauliflower, sweet potato, curry and cumin.  Cook and stir for 1 more minute.  Add broth, salt and pepper.  Bring mixture to a boil.  Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 12-15 minutes, until vegetables are tender.

Carefully transfer half the soup to a blender and puree' until smooth.  Return pureed' soup to pot with remaining soup and mix well.  Stir in cooked rice, milk and Swiss cheese.  Heat soup for 1 more minute until cheese melts.  Serve hot.

I served this with whole grain crackers and topped it with fat free sour cream. 


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Slow Cooker Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 T. curry powder (I may use more next time to give it more of a curry flavor)
1 package chicken gravy mix
1 can (14 1/2 ounce) chicken broth
1 medium red bell pepper, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 medium golden delicious apple, unpeeled, cored and coarsely chopped
1/4 C. raisins
1/4 C. chopped onions
2 bay leaves
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup of instant rice (I made rice in my rice cooker instead of using the instant.  I did not add it to the slow cooker)
Cut each chicken breast in half.  Sprinkle chicken with curry powder ( I also sprinkled them with salt and pepper)
Gradually stir gravy mix into broth in slow cooker until well blended.  Add seasoned chicken and remaining ingredients except rice. Stir well.  Cover and cook for 8 hours on low or 4 hours on high.  Gently stir in instant rice.  Cover and cook for an additional 15-20 min. on high or until rice is tender.  Remove bay leaves before serving.
I served this with green beans and squash.  

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Easy topping for chicken or fish

1/2 C. Dijon mustard
1/4 C. maple syrup ( I used sugar free )
1 T. red wine vinegar
salt and pepper

Season chicken or fish ( I used salmon ) with salt and pepper and place in baking dish that has been sprayed with non-stick spray.  Mix all ingredients except rosemary, together in a small bowl. Pour mixture over meat and bake at 375 for about 40 min. for chicken, 30 min. for fish.  After baking, sprinkle with rosemary.
I served this with spaghetti squash, green beans and corn on the cob.