Oct 29, 2009

Toasted Pumpkin Seeds

As a tradition I have always saved my seeds when I carve pumpkins for Halloween. They are such a nutritious and tasty snack. Pumpkin seeds provide zinc, which helps to build your immune system, and they contain heart healthy fatty acids...plus they taste great!

Here's how:

Separate seeds from string core.

Lay them out on a baking sheet in a warm dry area, for about an hour.

Toss with a little olive oil and seasoning salt.

Preheat oven to 350 F* and bake for 20-25 minutes.

*If you like them extra crispy, toward the end of baking turn on the broiler for 1-2 min.


Oct 21, 2009

Lemon Orzo with Chicken

Make this dish in an oven-proof pot, for easy preparation & clean up. I mixed everything in my dutch oven, baked for 35 min, and it was done. Easiest dinner ever. Thank you Martha Stewart's Everyday Food Magazine, for the idea!

Lemon Orzo with Chicken
4 cups low-sodium chicken or veggie broth
1 tbsp butter
1 1/4 tsp coarse salt
1/4 tsp ground pepper
1 lb chicken tenderloins, cut into 1-in pieces
1 lb orzo
8 oz pkg sliced mushrooms
8 oz pkg feta cheese, crumbled
1 tbsp dried dill (or 1/4 cup chopped fresh dill)
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
2 tsp finely grated lemon zest, plus 1/4 cup juice
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 400. In a large oven-proof pot (like a Dutch oven), bring broth, 3/4 cup water, butter, salt, and pepper to a boil, then turn off heat. In a separate large bowl, mix together the orzo, chicken, feta, dill, lemon zest/juice, parsley, and mushrooms. Add to pot and stir once, then place whole pot in oven until orzo is tender and cooking liquid is creamy; about 35 min. Sprinkle Parmesan on top and let stand 5-10 min before serving.

*adapted from Everyday Food magazine, November 2009

Oct 15, 2009


Excited to try Gjelina, an Abbott Kinney restaurant in Venice, on Saturday! Everything on their menu looks so good, I can already tell ordering will be a big decision-making crisis for me. Yum!!

Oct 14, 2009

Ginger & Root Veggie Soup

I have a cold & feel crummy so I made this soup last night. It helped.

Ginger & Root Veggie Soup
1 large onion
1 lb carrots, chopped into 1-inch chunks
3 cloves garlic
1-2 inch piece ginger (depending on how spicy you like it)
2 large sweet potatoes, cut into cubes
1 large white potato, cut into cubes
4 cups veggie broth
3 cups water
1 cup orange juice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of nutmeg
salt & pepper

Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a large pot. Chop onion and toss into pot. Sprinkle with salt & saute until translucent, about 5 min. Add all the veggies, ginger, and garlic and season again with salt & pepper. Add spices, broth, and water. Let boil for about 20-30 minutes or until veggies are all very soft. Blend with an immersion (hand) blender until smooth. Add orange juice, stir, and season to taste with salt & pepper. Enjoy with a dollop of nonfat Greek yogurt or on its own.
Note: if the soup is very thick (like a puree) just add some water so it's a soup consistency.

Oct 13, 2009

Maple Pecan Granola

Maple Pecan Granola

1/4 cup canola oil

1/4 cup light corn syrup

1/4 cup maple syrup

1 tsp cinnamon

¼ tsp nutmeg

1/2 tsp maple extract

4 cups rolled oats

1 cup shredded coconut flakes

2 cups Rice Krispies

1 cup chopped pecans

1 cup raisins

1 cup dried cranberries, or chopped dried fruit of choice

Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a large bowl, mix together first 8 ingredients (through almond extract). Add oats, coconut, cereal, and nuts and toss together so dry ingredients are evenly coated. Spread out onto a large cookie sheet (sprayed lightly with non-stick spray), and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and toss/mix granola around with a spatula. Return to oven for an additional 15 minutes, or until granola looks golden brown and toasted (may need an extra 5-10 minutes). Let cool for a few minutes, then add dried fruit and toss together. Let cool completely before putting granola in a bag or airtight container to store. May be stored up to 2 weeks in the cupboard, or a month in the refrigerator/freezer. Serve with low-fat Greek yogurt, over fruit, or sprinkled on ice cream for dessert.