Thursday, July 31, 2008

Seven Layer Southwest Salad

Fresh vegetables, black beans and a zesty salad dressing are united in a layered salad with lost of zip.
Yield: 8 servings

1 1/2 c. sour cream
3/4 c. thick and chunky salsa
1 can (15 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 large green bell pepper, diced
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/2 c. thinly sliced green onions with tops
1 pkg. (16 oz.) iceberg lettuce salad mix (10 c.)
1 c. (4 oz.) shredded cheddar cheese
1 1/2 c. corn chips (optional)

In bowl, combine sour cream and salsa; mix well and set aside. Drain and rinse beans. Using Dice bell pepper and tomatoes; thinly slice green onions. Layer beans, bell pepper, lettuce, tomatoes and green onions in Large Bowl. Spoon sour cream mixture over top using spreading evenly. Grate cheese over top. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Top with corn chips, if desired, and serve.

Tips and Tricks: For a heartier main dish salad, 2 cups diced cooked chicken can be added between the bell pepper and lettuce layers, if desired. This salad can be made up to 24 hours in advance. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tex-Mex Frittata

Prep/Total Time: 20 minutes
Yield: 6 servings

1 green onion, thinly sliced
1 cup cooked black beans
1/2 cup coarsely chopped cilantro
1 tbsp chopped pickled jalapenos
2 tsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 whole eggs
4 egg whites
pinches of dried oregano, sea salt and ground black pepper
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp finely chopped red onion
1 cup cooked corn
12 grape tomatoes, cut in half

To make salsa, combine green onions with beans, cilantro and jalapenos. Drizzle with vinegar and olive oil, then toss to mix. Let stand while preparing frittata.

In a bowl, whisk whole eggs with egg whites and seasonings. Coat or spray an oven-proof non-stick medium-sized skillet with olive oil and set over medium heat. Add red onion to skillet and cook for 2 minutes. Add corn and tomatoes, then eggs. Stir to evenly distribute ingredients. Cook just until bottom starts to become firm, 1 to 2 minutes, then bake in preheated 300 degree oven until center is set, 10 to 12 minutes

Tips and Tricks
I skipped the precooking of the onions and just mixed everything in one bowl and poured it into the skillet. I also used a larger pan, yielding a thinner frittata and adjusted cooking times accordingly. For the salsa, I used dried cilantro and left out the jalapenos.
Make It Healthier
Omit salt.
How Kids Can Help
Measure and dump spices. Pour eggs into pan.

Nutrition Facts
1.6 of frittata and 1/4 cup of salsa equals 115 calories, 3.5 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 14 g carbs, 4 g fiber, 8 g protein, 86mg sodium, 62 mg cholesterol

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Steaks With Veggie Salsa

Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 10 minutes
Yield: 4 servings

1 mesdium zucchini, diced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
1 small red onion, diced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
1 Tbsp fresh lime juice
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 tsp sea salt
3/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/4 tsp chili powder
4 4-oz sirloin steaks, trimmed of fat

In a small bowl, combine first seven ingredients plus a pinch of sea salt and 1/2 tsp pepper to make salsa. Then, heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. In another bowl, combine chili powder with remaining sea salt and pepper. Sprinkle both sides of steak with spice mixture. Cook until done to taste--2 minutes on each side for medium-rare, 2 1/2 minutes on each side for medium. Let stand 5 minutes, then serve, topped with salsa.

Tips and Tricks
Instead of the chili powder mix, I used the meat rub from this recipe for Broiled Steaks. I also used lemon juice in the veggie salsa because I used the last of the lime juice for the steaks. Instead of a cast-iron skillet, I broiled the steaks for about 7 minutes per side. If your meat is thick, consider slicing it into thinner pieces, it will be easier to cook. Use dried cilantro if you do not have fresh.
Make It Healthier
Omit the salt.
How Kids Can Help
Dump salsa ingredients into bowl and measure spices.

Nutrition Facts
1 4-oz piece of steak plus 1/4 cup salsa equals 240 calories, 7 g fat, 2.5 g saturated fat, 7 g carbs, 2 g fiber, 3 g sugars, 36 g protein, 203 mg sodium, 66 mg cholesterol

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Snicker Snack

This yummy mix comes from my days as a Girl Scout.

Prep/Total Time: 5 minutes
Yield: 8-12 servings

4 cups Cheerios or other oat circle cereal
1 bag milk chocolate chips
2 cups raisins
1 cup peanuts
1/2 cup butter

In a plastic bag, mix together the cereal, peanuts and raisins. Melt the butter in the microwave and pour it over the cereal mix. Toss to coat. When butter has cooled, add the chocolate chips and shake to mix.

Store in a cool, dry place.

Tips and Tricks
Be sure to add the chocolate chips AFTER the butter has cooled. Otherwise you'll end up with a melty mess. Use less butter if you prefer, or change the ingredients to suit your family's tastes.
Make It Healthier
Use unsalted peanuts and trans-fat free spread or unsalted butter.
How Kids Can Help
Older kids can make this recipe by themselves. Younger kids can press the buttons on the microwave and shake the bag to mix the ingredients.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Buffalo Chicken Pizza

1 pound chicken breasts
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
2 teaspoons grill seasoning, (like McCormick Montreal Seasoning)
1 pizza dough
Cornmeal handle dough (you can use flour as well)
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 to 3 tablespoons hot sauce, (to taste)
1/2 cup tomato soup (you can use tomato sauce but I think soup gives a better flavor)
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup blue cheese crumbles (optional)
3 scallions, thinly sliced

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Preheat grill pan to high.
Place chicken on a plate and drizzle extra-virgin olive oil over the chicken then season with grill seasoning. When grill is hot, add chicken and cook throughly.

Stretch dough to form pizza into cookie sheet using cornmeal or flour to help you handle it. If you let it rest and warm up a few minutes it will handle even easier.

In a medium skillet over medium heat, melt butter and stir in Worcestershire, hot sauce, and tomato soup/sauce.

Remove the chicken from grill and thinly slice it. Add chicken to sauce and coat. Cover the pizza dough with the saucy Buffalo chicken, cheeses, and scallions. Bake 18 minutes or until crisp.