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The perfect summer soup – Gazpacho!

21 May

I am always looking for a 0 point snack that fills me up and this soup does just this. One of my friends swears by this recipe and eats it daily, especially when she wants to detox! Its super easy to make and only gets better as the days go on. So make the whole portion and serve yourself a huge bowl out of the fridge whenever you need something refreshing and filling to eat! To make this a flat belly meal add a 1/4 avocado chopped or a big tablespoon of pesto!

 

Gazpacho

Ingredients

  • 4 cups low sodium tomato or V8  juice
  • 1 red onion, minced
  • 1 green, yellow or red bell pepper, minced
  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 seeded jalapeno, chopped or 1/8 tsp of cayenne pepper (use these ingredients to your tolerance of spice)
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley or basil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. In a blender or food processor, combine tomato juice, onion, bell pepper, cucumber, garlic, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, parsley, jalapeno, salt, and pepper. Blend until well-combined but still slightly chunky. Chill at least 2 hours before serving.

0 points plus per serving

Servings Per Recipe: 10

Amount Per Serving

Calories: 39

  • Total Fat: 0.2g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg
  • Sodium: 305mg
  • Total Carbs: 9.2g
  • Dietary Fiber: 1.6g
  • Protein: 1.6g

Roasted Butternut Squash Goat Cheese Ravioli with a Caramelized Onion, Bacon, Brown Butter Sauce

8 Nov


So, I have been experimenting with Butternut squash lately and I have decided that I love it. When you roast it with a little olive oil, salt and pepper, the flavor is amazing. It gets all caramelized and the balance between salty and sweet is just heavenly. A few years ago I got a pasta maker for Christmas and decided I would only make and eat homemade pasta. I found a recipe in the Food Network magazine for homemade ravioli. The process was long, messy and my kitchen looked like a bomb had dropped. The end result however, was totally worth it. Homemade pasta has a amazing texture, slightly chewy and my husband and I decided it was one of the best meals we have ever eaten. My pasta maker is now in the back of my cabinet waiting for the day I have enough time to take it out again, however I have found a new trick to making homemade ravioli that is easy and very quick. Wanton wrappers can be found in the produce section of your grocery store and they are the perfect size to make your own homemade raviolis. You don’t have to worry about making the dough, rolling it out, cutting it etc. It is all done for you! This recipe was delicious and quick, you can customize your own fillings as well. The possibilities are endless! Enjoy!

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_Z4yERTFRaQM/TOIEoN45xBI/AAAAAAAAAK8/_jGZkJBbpHA/s1600/ButternutSquashRavioli-069.jpg

Roasted Butternut Squash Goat Cheese Ravioli

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Saffron Butternut Squash Risotto

2 Nov

This time of year fresh fruits and vegetables are hard to find. The oranges I bought the other day were from South Africa and my tomatoes were from Brazil. It is hard to buy local when you live in a cold climate. Especially in a place like Connecticut that gets slammed with 9 inch snow storms in October! Yuck!!! You can however find one type of vegetable everywhere and that is SQUASH. I was never much of a squash fan growing up. I like zucchini and yellow squash, but never really knew what to do with the spaghetti, acorn and butternut varieties. My mother always would roast them with butter and salt and pepper, which was okay, but nothing that I craved. I picked up two butternut squash at a local farm stand for 1.00 each. If you are not sure what a butternut squash looks like here is a picture.

 

To prepare a butternut squash you must peel it. (I used a vegetable peeler) Cut it in half, scoop out the seeds and then cut it into bite size pieces. I have 2 amazing recipes for you coming up this week. The first Roasted Butternut Squash Saffron Risotto and then Roasted Butternut Squash Goat Cheese Ravioli with a brown butter, caramelized onion, bacon sauce. And yes…they are ww friendly!!! So the next time you see those strange looking squash in the grocery store, grab one! They are delicious and really good for you!!

    Saffron Butternut Squash Risotto

  [...]

Light Eggplant Rollatini

26 Oct

We have eaten a lot of eggplant this summer. I loved making the roasted eggplant dip for a quick snack and sandwich topper and I love grilling slices of it as a quick side. One of my favorite ways to eat eggplant is an eggplant Parmesan or eggplant rollatini. These cheesy dishes are a ww No No, each dish can pack up to 20 points +! I however created a delicious and easy dish to make for only a few points per serving! My entire family loved it. I served it with brown rice. Yummy! Enjoy!

 

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_d9ccHbg5oqE/Su-aH_bodfI/AAAAAAAAAZ0/1roe5iTnnuE/s400/eggplantroll.jpg

Image from Ava Catau

Light Eggplant Rollatini

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Spaghetti and Meatballs

20 Oct

One of my favorite comfort foods in Spaghetti and Meatballs. But portion size is key to enjoying this meal at home. Most restaurants serve you a HUMUNGOUS plate and the amount they give you could probably feed a family of 4. These meatballs are delicate and juicy. Your family will never guess they are filled with veggies and are low fat. There are some great alternatives to regular pasta. One of my favorites is the Smart Taste line by Ronzoni. It is high in fiber and low in points and tastes great!

 

I also use Ragu’s light sauce. It is delicious and has no added sugar. Enjoy!

Meatballs

[...]

Curried Vegetables with a Yogurt Cream Sauce

29 Sep

 

Indian food is one of my favorites. But, I am not a fan of the smell or taste of curry powder. A few years ago on of my Mom’s friends, Indira, came to her house to visit. She was born and raised in Nepal which is very close to India. The flavors are similar and the dishes are mostly vegetarian. She loves to cook and decided to treat us all to a traditional Nepalese meal. Dumplings with a tomato, chili sauce, curried vegetables with yogurt sauce, Chicken Curry and rice. It was amazing and she didn’t use curry powder in anything. This recipe is very easy to make and extremely healthy! I used a bunch of my fresh tomatoes from our garden. You can serve it as a main course over rice or as a side. Enjoy!

Curried Vegetables with a Yogurt Cream Sauce

 

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 can of chickpeas drained
  • 1 head of cauliflower cut into small pieces
  • 1 zucchini sliced
  • 4 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 small piece of fresh ginger (1 inch) chopped or 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsps plain, fat free greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp olive oil

Directions

  1. Add the oil to a large pot. Saute onions and garlic until soft.
  2. Add chickpeas, cauliflower, zucchini, tomatoes and spices. Stir well and let simmer on low for 30 minutes. Stir often to help tomatoes break down.
  3. Check that chickpeas and cauliflower is softened.
  4. Add greek yogurt and stir well.
  5. Serve over rice. (add points for rice)

 

Amount Per Serving 1 cup

3 points + per serving (with out rice)

Nutritional Information

Calories

131

Total Fat

1.2g

Sodium

321mg

Total Carbohydrates

24.4g

Dietary Fiber

4.7g

Protein

5.9g

 

One Pan Roast Rosemary Garlic Chicken and Vegetables

25 Sep

My family loves Roast Chicken especially this recipe, but it can be a messy and time consuming process. You need to clean the bird, wrap it in twine, baste it, carve it and then of course there is all that cleaning! I decided to make the process super easy, fast and there is only one pan to clean up! Yeah! A whole chicken cut up at the store is very inexpensive and you can make Chicken Pot Pie with the leftover meat and vegetables. I did leave the skin on and YES it was totally worth it! You can use boneless, skinless breasts for a lower points value. Did you know that the skin only adds 1 point + per piece of chicken. In my mind the skin all crispy and delicious is totally worth it! This is a perfect fast evening meal and it is even perfect for a Sunday dinner. Enjoy!!

 

One Pan Roast Rosemary Garlic Chicken and Vegetables

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Tomato and Apple Chicken Sausage Mac and Cheese

15 Sep

I love macaroni and cheese!  I love the creamy, cheesy sauce and the warming feeling the dish gives me. It reminds me of childhood. My Mom always made the best mac and cheese. We had the boxed variety sometimes, but it was always special when my Mom made it from scratch. She also browned hot dog slices in butter and threw those in. Ahhh childhood!! Of course now I actually have to watch what I put in my mouth, but I still want to eat my favorites. I have created some amazing mac and cheese dishes. If you love buffalo wings with blue cheese, you will love my Buffalo Chicken Macaroni and Cheese and the most amazing, low point invention ever Super Cheesy Low Fat Cauliflower Macaroni and cheese. You will not be able to even tell there is cauliflower in it! (cut the pieces really small) Here is my version of my Mom’s famous Mac and cheese with hot dogs, with a fall spin. I used apple chicken sausage and added some nutmeg for a warm homey feel. Enjoy!

Tomato and Apple Chicken Sausage Macaroni and Cheese

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Barefoot Wine & Bubbly Review and Artichoke Cups

12 Sep

I love hosting and going to home parties. I actually was a consultant for “The Body Shop at Home” (yes the cosmetics store in the mall) for 7 years.  I did facial, makeup and pedicure parties. They were so fun and I love meeting new people and allowing woman to pamper themselves. I love getting all my friends together to hang out, relax, eat and drink!. I had 10 friends over on Friday night, my kids slept at my mother in laws and I was ready to chill out!  My friend Raeshelle is selling these adorable bags and storage bins for Thirty One Gifts!! I earned 200.00 in free products!!! Wooo Hooo!!! I will be giving away one of her adorable bags this fall, but check out her website! The bags are awesome quality and I love the fabric choices and how you can personalize them!

 

http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-32pOMznGY3E/TfUkcMheZ0I/AAAAAAAALiI/RbfU3a-sshE/s1600/Thirty_One_Gifts_Polka_Dot_Bags.jpg

 

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-k_EhdzAN_wE/TVW9r6MWhnI/AAAAAAAAmDU/YtaKDQK8hNQ/s1600/Organizing+Utility+tote.jpg

The Best Bag ever!!! The organizing utility tote has 7 outside pockets!! I got one to keep in my mini van to hold all my “Stuff” in the well between the front two seats and it was only 25.00!!!!

I was so excited when I was able to try some delicious wine and champagne from Barefoot Wine and Bubbly!! They sent me their Sweet Red and their Brut Cuv’ee Champagne. I also picked up a bottle of their Moscato for the home party that I hosted on Friday night!

 

The first wine we tried was the Sweet Red.

Sweet Red

Tastes & Delights

Chill out (no seriously, try this chilled) with the ripe, juicy flavors of raspberry, pomegranate and cherry.

Time to Uncork

Summer, summer, summertime!

Perfect Partners

Grilled veggies. Marinated steaks. Gather up the family and friends for a BBQ.

http://cdn.babble.com/family-kitchen/files/2011/02/premium-red-sangria-12-550.jpg

I made a sangria with it. I added  tons of fruit. Chopped apples, mango, pineapple, green grapes, and orange slices. All you have to do is pour the bottle of wine in a large pitcher, add one can of diet sprite or ginger ale and all your fruit. Let it marinate for 1 hour. It was amazing and you can eat the fruit with a fork.

 

I also bought a big bottle of the Moscato at my local liquor store. My friends loved it and they drained the bottle in no time! It was light, fresh and delicious!!

Moscato

Tastes & Delights

Delightfully sweet with lush fruity aromas. Hints of citrus skip across flavors of juicy peach and ripe apricots. A bright, crisp finish dances in at the end. It’s a bit sweeter than our Riesling.

Time to Uncork

Swingin’ on the porch swing watchin’ the world go by.

Perfect Partners

Good at keeping things fresh with some fruit or mild cheese

We have not tried the champagne yet, but my husband and I plan to pop it open as soon as the air gets a chill in it, so we can enjoy it by the fire.

Brut Cuvée

Tastes & Delights

Green apple, jasmine, hints of kiwi and peach flavors bubble up for a crisp finish. Bubbling with aromas of Chardonnay, it’s our most traditional bubbly.

Time to Uncork

Simple moments. Big moments. Everyday moments…

Perfect Partners

Make a toast to that buttery lobster or fresh fruit & enjoy!

Now the best part at home parties besides the drinking and shopping is the food! I made tons of naughty favorites, but also made my delicious Roasted Eggplant Dip and a ww friendly artichoke cups. My friend Julie shared this recipe with me and I know you will love them. They are like eating artichoke dip in a wanton wrapper. Easy, low in points and everyone wanted the recipe!

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Artichoke Cups

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Lots of news and a new recipe for you!

7 Sep

Hi everyone, you may be wondering where I have been and the answer is in the DARK! Connecticut was hit hard by hurricane Irene and we did not have power for 7 DAYS!!! Yes 7 day with out power. Which included no phones, water or flushing of toilets. Living with 3 kids on cereal was crazy, so I escaped to my parents house. To top it all off school was delayed by a week due to trees down on many streets. But, I have been working on some cool stuff for you; I did a review for Barefoot Wine and Bubbly, I am working on a review for Amy’s Organic Foods new light and lean meals (only 6 points + each) and I have a new recipe for you! Oh and the best news is I was chosen to create an ad for Nature’s Path Granola Bars!! I created a 30 second musical commercial for them! My first paying gig!! Yeah!! I will be posting the video soon.

With all the lack of power stuff going on, the grill was our best friend. This is a recipe we made to eat along with grilled chicken and it was amazing!!!!! It is actually totally filling and is a meal in itself. You will love it!!

 

http://thedigitallatina.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/get-your-grill-on.jpg

Image and recipe from Self Magazine

Polenta Stack with Navy Bean, Feta, Basil Salad [...]

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