Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Asparagus & Prosciutto Strata


    • 2 slices dense multigrain bread
    • 12 large eggs
    • 1/2 cup low-fat milk
    • 1/2 cup dry white wine or low-fat milk
    • 1 tablespoon dry mustard
    • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
    • 3/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    • 3 cups halved and very thinly sliced sweet onions
    • 1 cup thinly sliced leek(s), white part only
    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 bunch thin asparagus (about 1 pound), trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
    • 1/4 cup chopped scallions or fresh chives
    • 3 very thin slices prosciutto (about 1 1/2 ounces), torn into strips
    • 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
    • 2 tablespoons lemon zest (optional)


  • 1 Cut bread into 1/4-inch cubes. Whisk eggs in a large bowl. Whisk in milk, wine (or another 1/2 cup milk), dry mustard, nutmeg, salt and pepper. Stir in the bread. Let stand at room temperature while you prepare the vegetables. (If baking the next day, cover and refrigerate the egg mixture.)
  • 2 Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions, leek and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low and continue cooking very gently, stirring occasionally, until the onions have a little color and appear almost melted, 30 to 45 minutes more.
  • 3 Meanwhile, bring 1 inch of water to a boil in a medium skillet. Add asparagus, cover and cook for 2 minutes. Drain and let cool; pat dry.
  • 4 Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish (or similar 3-quart dish) with cooking spray.
  • 5 When the onions are done, stir in scallions (or chives) and cook, stirring for 2 minutes. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle the asparagus over the onion mixture. (If baking the next day: cover and refrigerate the vegetables in the baking dish.)
  • 6 If the egg mixture and vegetables were refrigerated overnight, remove from the refrigerator, uncover and let stand at room temperature for 1 hour.
  • 7 Preheat oven to 350 °F.
  • 8 Scatter strips of prosciutto over the vegetables. Stir 1/4 cup cheese, parsley, mint and lemon zest (if using) into the egg mixture until well combined, then pour the egg mixture over the vegetables. Sprinkle the remaining 1/4 cup cheese over the top.
  • 9 Bake the strata just until firm to the touch in the middle and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers at least 160 °F, 30 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven, very carefully cover with foil to keep warm and let rest for 20 to 30 minutes before serving.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare egg mixture (through Step 1) and vegetables (Steps 2-5) and refrigerate separately for up to 1 day; remove from the refrigerator about 1 hour before baking (2 hours before serving).

Monday, August 29, 2016

Roasted Thyme-Corn Queso Dip


    • 3 cups corn kernels (see Tip)
    • 8 ounces shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (2 cups)
    • 8 ounces reduced-fat cream cheese (Neufch√Ętel), cut into small pieces 
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme


  • 1 Preheat oven to 375 °F.
  • 2 Coat a medium (10-inch) cast-iron skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-high heat. Add corn; cook, stirring occasionally, until mostly golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. (Corn kernels may "pop" as they brown.) Remove from heat; stir in Cheddar and cream cheese. Transfer to the oven.
  • 3 Bake until golden and bubbling, 18 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle the cheese dip with fresh thyme and serve.
  • How to Remove Corn Kernels Stand an ear on its stem end and slice the kernels off with a sharp knife. To extract the corn “milk” and get more flavor for sauces, soups or puddings, add another step to the process: After cutting the kernels off, press the dull side of the knife down the length of the ear to push out the rest of the corn and its milk. Yield: You'll get about 1 cup fresh kernels from one large ear of corn.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Baked Cinnamon-Apple French Toast


    • 3 cups nonfat milk
    • 2 cups pasteurized liquid egg whites, such as Egg Beaters
    • 3 tablespoons honey
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1 1-pound loaf sliced whole-wheat bread
    • 1 cup chopped dried apples, (3 ounces)
    • 1/2 cup raisins
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    • 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar


  • 1 Whisk milk, egg whites, honey, vanilla and salt in a large bowl.
  • 2 Trim crusts off 8 bread slices and set aside. Cut the crusts and the remaining bread into 1-inch pieces. Toss with dried apples, raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg in another large bowl.
  • 3 Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Transfer the bread mixture to the pan. Lay the reserved crustless slices evenly on top, trimming to fit. Whisk the milk mixture one more time, then pour evenly over the bread. Press the bread down with the back of a wooden spoon, making sure it's evenly moist. Cover with parchment paper, then foil, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.
  • 4 Preheat oven to 350 °F.
  • 5 Bake the casserole, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until puffed, set and lightly browned, about 20 minutes more. Let stand for 10 minutes; dust with confectioners' sugar and serve.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3 and refrigerate for up to 1 day.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Incredible 5-Spice Tilapia


    • 1 pound tilapia fillets
    • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder (see Tip)
    • 1/4 cup Bragg Soy sauce
    • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
    • 1 tablespoon canola oil
    • 3 scallions, thinly sliced


  • 1 Sprinkle both sides of tilapia fillets with five-spice powder. Combine soy sauce and brown sugar in a small bowl.
  • 2 Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tilapia and cook until the outer edges are opaque, about 2 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, turn the fish over, stir the soy mixture and pour into the pan. Bring the sauce to a boil and cook until the fish is cooked through and the sauce has thickened slightly, about 2 minutes more. Add scallions and remove from the heat. Serve the fish drizzled with the pan sauce.
  • Tip: Five-spice powder is a blend of cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns. Look for it in the spice section at the market or with other Asian ingredients.
  • People with celiac disease or gluten-sensitivity should use soy sauces that are labeled "gluten-free," as soy sauce may contain wheat or other gluten-containing sweeteners and flavors.

Friday, August 19, 2016

Quinoa Salad with Roasted Chicken and Garden Vegetables


    • 3 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 teaspoon salt, divided
    • 5 tablespoon Olive Oil
    • 3 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed, divided
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper, divided
    • 10 ounces mushrooms, quartered
    • 4 medium carrots, sliced 1/2 inch thick
    • 1 medium onion, cut into 3/4-inch wedges
    • 1 1/2 cups water
    • 1 cup quinoa
    • 1 pound chicken tenders, halved crosswise
    • 8 cups torn escarole or curly endive


  • 1 Preheat oven to 475 °F.
  • 2 Mash garlic and 3/4 teaspoon salt into a paste with the side of a chef's knife or a fork. Transfer to a large bowl and whisk in oil, 2 teaspoons fennel seeds and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.
  • 3 Combine mushrooms, carrots and onion in a medium bowl. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons of the oil mixture and toss well to coat. Spread the vegetables on a large rimmed baking sheet. Roast for 10 minutes.
  • 4 Meanwhile, combine water and quinoa in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to maintain a simmer and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.
  • 5 Combine chicken, 2 teaspoons of the oil mixture, the remaining 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper in the medium bowl. Toss to coat.
  • 6 Stir the vegetables and nestle the chicken among them. Continue roasting until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a chicken tender registers 165 °F, 8 to 10 minutes more.
  • 7 Add escarole (or endive) and the quinoa and toss with the dressing. Serve the salad topped with the roasted vegetables and chicken.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Delicous Honey Sweetened Cherry Pie


2 tablespoons uncooked quick-cooking tapioca
6 cups pitted sweet cherries
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 (15-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough (such as Pillsbury)
Cooking spray
2 tablespoons water
1 large egg white
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar

1. Place tapioca in a spice or coffee grinder; process until finely ground. Combine tapioca, cherries, and next 5 ingredients (through salt) in a large bowl; toss well. Let cherry mixture stand 30 minutes; stir to combine.

2. Preheat oven to 400°.

3. Roll 1 (9-inch) dough portion into an 11-inch circle. Fit dough into a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray, allowing dough to extend over edge of plate. Spoon cherry mixture and any remaining liquid into dough. Roll remaining (9-inch) dough portion into a 12-inch circle. Cut dough into 12 (1-inch-wide) strips; arrange in a lattice pattern over cherry mixture. Fold edges under; crimp.

4. Combine 2 tablespoons water and egg white in a small bowl. Brush the egg white mixture over dough on top of pie, and sprinkle dough evenly with 2 tablespoons turbinado sugar. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes. Shield edges of piecrust with foil, and bake an additional 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is thick and bubbly. Cool pie in pan for 45 minutes on a wire rack.

Monday, August 15, 2016

Grilled zucchini Salad with Shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano


    • 1 medium lemon
    • 2 tablespoons Canola oil
    • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 2 pounds small zucchini, cut into lengthwise slices about 1/2 inch thick
    • 1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted
    • 1/3 cup thinly shaved Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese 


  • 1 Bring a small saucepan of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove the peel from lemon with a vegetable peeler, making sure not to include any white pith. (Reserve the lemon.) Cut the peel into thin slivers. Add to the boiling water and cook until soft, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.
  • 2 Squeeze the juice from the lemon into a small bowl. Add oil, pepper and salt and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  • 3 Preheat grill to medium-high or place a grill pan over medium-high heat until hot.
  • 4 Oil the grill rack or the grill pan. Grill zucchini slices, turning once, until tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
  • 5 Arrange the zucchini on a platter and drizzle with the reserved lemon dressing. Serve sprinkled with almonds, cheese and the lemon peel.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 4, cover and refrigerate the zucchini, lemon peel and dressing for up to 1 day. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Cucumber Chicken Salad with Sesame and Noodles


    • 8 ounces Chinese egg noodles or other thin noodles or pasta, fresh or dried
    • 1 cup creamy peanut butter
    • 3/4 cup rice vinegar 
    • 2 tblsp sesame oil
    • 1 cup thinly sliced scallions
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
    • 2 tablespoons Bragg soy sauce
    • 2 heads baby romaine or 1 head regular romaine lettuce
    • 1 1/2 pounds cooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced crosswise into 1/4-inch slices and chilled
    • 1 large English cucumber, peeled, seeded, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/4-inch slices
    • Salt to taste
    • Freshly ground pepper to taste
    • Toasted sesame seeds for garnish 


  • 1 Fill a large bowl with water and add ice cubes. Cook noodles in boiling water until just tender, 2 to 4 minutes if fresh, about 6 minutes for dry (or according to package directions). Drain and transfer the noodles to the ice water. When the noodles are cold, drain well and transfer to a very large bowl. Set aside.
  • 2 Meanwhile, whisk peanut butter, vinegar, sesame oil in a bowl until smooth. Add scallions, cilantro, if using, soy sauce, and stir to blend.
  • 3 If using baby romaine, half lengthwise, notch out the core, and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. If using regular romaine, remove the tougher outer leaves. Halve lengthwise, notch out the core, halve again, and cut crosswise into 1/2-inch pieces. You should have about 8 cups.
  • 4 Add the lettuce, chicken, and cucumber to the noodles. Add three-fourths of the dressing and toss to coat. Season with salt and pepper. Add the remaining dressing if desired.
  • 5 Transfer the salad to a serving bowl. Serve garnished with sesame seeds.
  • Make Ahead Tip: Cover and refrigerate the salad for up to 1 day or prepare the dressing (Step 2), cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days; thin with a little water as needed.

Monday, August 8, 2016

Healthy Spaghetti Squash Lasagna with Broccolini


    • 1 2 1/2- to 3-pound spaghetti squash, halved lengthwise and seeded
    • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 bunch broccolini, chopped
    • 4 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
    • 2 tablespoons water
    • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
    • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
    • 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper


  • 1 Position racks in upper and lower thirds of oven; preheat to 450 °F.
  • 2 Place squash cut-side down in a microwave-safe dish; add 2 tablespoons water. Microwave, uncovered, on High until the flesh is tender, about 10 minutes. (Alternatively, place squash halves cut-side down on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake in a 400 °F oven until the squash is tender, 40 to 50 minutes.)
  • 3 Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add broccolini, garlic and red pepper (if using); cook, stirring frequently, for 2 minutes. Add water and cook, stirring, until the broccolini is tender, 3 to 5 minutes more. Transfer to a large bowl.
  • 4 Use a fork to scrape the squash from the shells into the bowl. Place the shells in a broiler-safe baking pan or on a baking sheet. Stir 3/4 cup mozzarella, 2 tablespoons Parmesan, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper into the squash mixture. Divide it between the shells; top with the remaining 1/4 cup mozzarella and 2 tablespoons Parmesan.
  • 5 Bake on the lower rack for 10 minutes. Move to the upper rack, turn the broiler to high and broil, watching carefully, until the cheese starts to brown, about 2 minutes.
  • Chefs Note - “In this low-carb spaghetti squash lasagna recipe, garlicky broccolini, spaghetti squash and cheese are combined for a healthy take on a favorite casserole. This bakes right in the squash shells for a fun presentation. Serve with a big Caesar salad and Some Whole Grain Bread for a great finish!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Grilled Pizza with Smoked Salmon


    • 1/2 recipe Quick Pizza Dough (recipe follows)
    • 6 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
    • 3 ounces smoked salmon, sliced into strips
    • 1/4 cup chopped red onion, soaked in cold water for 10 minutes and drained
    • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
    • Freshly ground pepper
    • Fresh lemon juice to taste
    • Fresh dill for garnish


  • 1 Preheat grill.
  • 2 Divide pizza dough into 2 pieces. Roll each piece into a circle 1/8 inch thick and 6 inches in diameter.
  • 3 Place the circles of dough directly on the grill. Cook until slightly puffed and there are grill marks on the underside, about 1 minute. Turn over to crisp the second side. Remove from the grill.
  • 4 Spread the grilled crusts with sour cream and top with smoked salmon, chopped onions, capers and pepper. Drizzle with a little lemon juice and sprinkle with dill. Cut into wedges and serve.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Hazelnut-Orange Zest Snack Muffins

1.5 ounces hazelnut flour (about 6 tablespoons; such as Bob's Red Mill)
2.5 ounces cake flour (about 1/2 cup)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons 2% reduced-fat milk
1 1/2 tablespoons agave nectar
1 1/2 teaspoons grated orange rind
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 large egg, lightly beaten
Cooking spray


1. Preheat oven to 350°.
2. Weigh or lightly spoon flours into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flours, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Combine oil, milk, agave, rind, juice, and egg in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add flour mixture to oil mixture, stirring just until moist.
3. Spoon batter evenly into 12 miniature muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake at 350° for 12 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center of muffins comes out clean. Remove muffins from pan; cool on a wire rack.