Saturday, October 16, 2010

Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

I found this recipe on a blog called Chinese Grandmother!  Her recipe looked amazing and I wanted to try it with a few healthy changes.  Guess what?  It turned out delicious!  Next time I will substitute dried blueberries for chocolate chips!

Healthy Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

1 cup flour
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup flaxseed meal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup apple sauce
1 egg
1/2 cup non-fat yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup mashed bananas (2 to 3)
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, mix flours, sugar, flaxseed meal, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.  In another bowl, mix eggs, yogurt, apple sauce, and vanilla.  Mash bananas and add to egg mixture.  Mix dry and wet ingredients.  Add chocolate chips and mix until combined.

Pour mixture into 4 lightly greased and floured mini loaf pans.  Bake 40-45 minutes until tops are brown and a toothpick inserted into the bread comes out clean.

Fennel-and-Onion Chicken

I'd never tried fennel before, but I'd heard it was delicious.  The sauteed fennel was good, but I think the fennel flavor was a tad strong on this one.  Next time, I'll tone down the fennel and use mushrooms as well.  Why?  Because I love mushrooms on everything!  I also think it will add a nice balance to the strong flavor of the onions and fennel.  Next time, I'd also use all chicken breasts instead of breasts and thighs.  Make sure you really let the chicken caramelize in the bottom of the pan so you have nice bits of browned chicken that will remain in the pan while you saute the onions and fennel (and mushrooms!). 

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)
2 pieces skinless, boneless chicken breasts, halved crosswise
4 pieces skinless, boneless chicken thigh
Salt and pepper
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
2 tablespoons flour, plus more for coating
1 large bulb fennel, thinly sliced, plus a small handful of fennel fronds, chopped
1 large onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, crushed
3/4 to 1 cup dry white wine (eyeball it)
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons pine nuts, finely chopped
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
A handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped 

In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons EVOO, 2 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, the poultry seasoning and fennel seeds. Coat the chicken lightly with flour. Add the chicken to the pan and cook, turning once, until golden, 8 minutes; transfer to a plate.

Add the remaining 2 tablespoons EVOO, the fennel, fennel fronds, onion and garlic to the pan; season with salt and pepper and cook for 10 minutes. Add the wine, scraping the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken on top, cover and cook through for about 5 minutes.

Heat a saucepan over medium heat. Add the butter to melt, then add the pine nuts and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the 2 tablespoons flour for 1 minute. Whisk in the chicken stock and Worcestershire sauce and cook until thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Top with the parsley.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Roadhouse Potatoes

Roadhouse Potatoes

1/2 cup butter
3 cups half & half
1 teaspoon salt
1 shallot, chopped
24 oz package of Ore Ida hash browns
1/2 cup grated parmesan

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Heat butter, Half & Half and salt in a sauce pan until it almost reaches a boil.  While the milk is heating, spread hash browns in a greased 9x13 pan and top with shallots.  Pour warm milk mixture over the potatoes.  Sprinkle parmesan cheese over the potatoes.  Bake 1 1/2 hour.

Pumpkin Bran Bread

I found this recipe at Bon Appetit and modified it a bit so it's much healthier!  I made 6 mini loaf pans and gifted them to friends!

Pumpkin Bran Bread

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour 
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups shredded bran cereal (such as All-Bran) 
2 teaspoons baking soda 
1 1/2 teaspoons salt 
2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 
2 teaspoons ground allspice 
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg 
1/2 teaspoon baking powder 
4 eggs 
1 cup sugar 
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup buttermilk 
2 cups canned solid pack pumpkin 
2/3 cup apple sauce

Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter two 9x5x3-inch loaf pans. Dust pans with flour. Combine first 8 ingredients in medium bowl; stir to blend well. Whisk eggs, sugar and buttermilk in large bowl. Add dry ingredients; stir to combine. Add pumpkin and apple sauce; stir until blended. Divide batter between prepared pans. 

Bake until tester inserted into center of each loaf comes out clean, about 1 hour 20 minutes. Let loaves cool 10 minutes. Cut around pan sides to loosen loaves, if necessary. Turn out loaves onto racks; cool completely. (Can be made ahead. Wrap tightly and store at room temperature 1 day or freeze up to 1 month.) 


* If you're using mini loaf pans, bake at 325°F for 50 minutes.
** I also sprinkled a little raw sugar on top of the loaves before baking, but that's optional.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Grilled Garlic Chicken with Roasted Red Pepper Aioli Sauce

If you haven't been to Kalyn's Kitchen, an amazing blog, please visit it!  Her recipes are delicious, simple, and incredibly healthy.  I look forward to every recipe she posts and I really hope she's okay with me re-posting so many of her amazing recipes.  Please, visit her blog and follow her! 


Grilled Garlic Chicken with Roasted Red Pepper Aioli Sauce

Grilled Garlic Chicken
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 T fresh-squeezed lemon juice
1 T garlic puree (or minced fresh garlic)
1 tsp. dried poultry seasoning
4 T olive oil

Red Pepper Aioli Sauce
1 jar roasted red peppers (12 oz.) 
1 T garlic puree or minced garlic (or a little less if you're not that into garlic)
1/2 cup mayo (I used full-fat mayo because you're not eating huge amounts of this, but reduced-fat mayo would also work)
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

For the sauce, put peppers into a colander placed in the sink and let drain for a few minutes. Then use a double layer of paper towels to blot both sides of the peppers, drying them off as much as you can. Coarsely chop peppers.


Put chopped peppers and garlic into the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and process about 20-30 seconds, until peppers and garlic are finely pureed. Add mayo and pulse about 8-10 times, or until mayo is well-mixed with the peppers. (You may need to scrape down the sides with a rubber scraper a few times.)

Leave the motor running and add the olive oil through the feed tube, 1 T at a time, blending for a few seconds after each tablespoon of oil. Season sauce to taste with sea salt and fresh ground black pepper.

I like this best when it's been chilled for an hour or two, which will slightly thicken the sauce.
For the chicken, trim all visible fat and tendons from chicken breasts, then cut small slits going down the length of each breast.

Whisk together the lemon juice, garlic, poultry seasoning, and olive oil. Put chicken in a Ziploc bag or plastic container with a tight lid that's big enough to hold chicken in a single layer. Put chicken into bag or container, pour in marinade, seal it, and turn over a few times so the marinade is coating all the chicken. Let chicken marinate in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours, or up to 24 hours if you need to start the marinating ahead.


When ready to cook, remove chicken from the fridge and let it come to room temperature. Oil the grill grates or grill pan with olive oil or non-stick spray. Preheat the gas or charcoal grill or stove-top grill pan to medium-high. (You can only hold your hand there for a few seconds at that heat.)


Cook chicken about 4-5 minutes on first side (you can rotate it halfway through if you want grill marks, but I didn't bother since I was serving the chicken with the sauce over it.) Turn chicken and cook 4-5 minutes more on the second side, or until chicken is firm and lightly browned. Serve hot, with Roasted Red Pepper Aioli Sauce.

Teriyaki Meatball Stir Fry

I purchased these Chicken Meatballs at Costco and they were delicious!  I highly recommend trying these meatballs - even alone as an appetizer or snack!

Aidell's Teriyaki Meatball Stir Fry

¼ cup soy sauce
¼ cup rice wine vinegar or white wine vinegar
3 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 package Aidells Chicken Teriyaki Meatballs
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 pound sliced vegetables (carrots, celery, broccoli, green beans, snow peas, red or green pepper)
1 teaspoon cornstarch mixed with 2 teaspoons water

In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, vinegar, sugar and ginger set aside.

Place the oil in a wok or large skillet over high heat and add meatballs. Sauté for 3 minutes. Stir in the onion and garlic and sauté 2 minutes. Add the vegetables, pour in the soy sauce mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer 3-5 minutes until vegetables are tender.  Stir in the cornstarch mixture and bring the sauce back to a boil for 1-2 minutes to thicken the sauce.  Serve over rice or noodles.
Serves 4-6