Monday, October 27, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

So, I'm taking the easy way out once more for Menu Plan Monday. I'm going to use the $50 Menu from the Fall 08 Clean Eating Magazine. I had good luck with the last one, and things aren't going to go so well this week - I'm going to make it easy on myself.

You see, we're going to have to euthanize Percy on Tuesday- I have to make the call in a few minutes to make the appointment. He's not the pug in my picture. He's the first pug that I've owned as an adult though (I grew up with one, Rupert), and he just turned 15 recently. His liver is failing and we're at the point where we really can't do much else and I don't want to get to the point where he's being supported by IV's and such. He's gotten to the point where he's not eating much, and I'm already cooking for him, trying different things to get him to eat. His gums are starting to turn yellow (jaundice) and as someone who has liver problems of her own, I don't want him to suffer a lot of pain because he's one stoic little guy. I got him while hubby and I were still dating, and he really took to hubby and he's really hubby's dog. Hubby hasn't owned a pet before, so this is really hard for him. :(

I will be doing pizza for dinner on Fri - I just haven't figured out what kind - it'll depend on what we feel like by that time. I also must admit I haven't felt like typing up the recipes yet either, not sure when I will. Sorry. :( I will try to get it done before next week.

If you want the shopping list, it can be found at And the actual magazine is still on the stands. I couldn't find tostadas in the local grocery store - I'll check in a few stores while I'm in Richmond today - maybe even some of the hispanic ones but it'll depend on how many I feel like visiting. I may just bake some corn tortillas instead. If you want more menu ideas visit I'm an Orgainizing Jukie:

Black Bean Tostadas 6 pts
Veggie, Rice & Cheese Supreme 5 pts
Sesame-Mango Chicken with Brown Rice 8 pts
Turkey Ragout with Garlic Bread 8 pts
Thai-Style Tofu with Noodles 7 pts

Monday, October 20, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Well, Percy still isn't eating very well. I'm off to the store in a bit to buy some chicken breasts to see if he'll like them better than the ground turkey - but I have a feeling it won't make much difference. Miko on the other hand, whenever anyone makes a move towards the kitchen thinks she needs to get fed again. I told hubby I'm about ready to re-start her back on commercial food just because she's become a pain-in-the-butt. And this is from the dog that when we got her - the owner told us that she only eats Purina One Lamb and Rice, and she did. She wouldn't eat if I gave her something else, and if I mixed it with something else, she picked it out! It took forever to transition her over to what I fed Percy. And now she's a normal food-obsessed pug. I almost wish she was back to being picky. Course now Percy is being picky and I wish he wasn't. :( I was sitting on the floor last night hand-feeding him bits of apple and carrot so that he was at least eating something. I'll pick up some more fruits and vegetables today since they are his favorites too - and hope that he'll continue to at least eat little bits of them. So far he at least seems mostly happy, but still, it's troublesome and the thoughts of what might come next aren't far from my mind. :(

The weekend meals progressed just a bit differently that what I posted - but not really that much differently. We ate blue crabs at FiL's on Sat, and came home with a few of them leftover. So instead of Manhattan Clam Chowder I used mostly the same recipe and subbed the crabs (removed the top shell and broke them in half and threw them in at the end where you add the clams) for the clams and added Old Bay (actually Crab Seasoning - Old Bay and Flake Salt) to the broth. I did add a bit more water too since the crabs would need it. Nummy! We also didn't go to MiL's yesterday, so we had the soup for lunch and I made the Eggplant/Parmesan Bread and salad for dinner. I also didn't make the salad dressing, just used Kraft salad dressing that I had instead. It was all yummy. It was cold enough yesterday for us to turn on the heat for the first time, so the whole day's menu ended up being perfect. :)

Here's the dinner menu for next week, and the recipes are below. I haven't tried any of these recipes yet. For more recipe ideas, visit: I'm an Organizing Junkie. She is now consistently over 300 participants! I'm always finding new ideas from people there!

Monday: Baja-Style Fish Tacos 7 pts

Tues: Spicy Turkey Burgers with Tzatziki (pita bread and cherry tomatoes) 5 pts

Wed: Rigatoni Bologonese 6 pts

Thurs: Tuna Steaks with Creamy Mustard Sauce (1/2 c cooked egg noodles, 1 c steamed broccoli florets) 7 pts [A note on this recipe - it's made for leftovers to make another recipe and serves 2 - so if you're serving more read the recipe]

Fri: Spankopizza 10 pts for 2 pcs

Baja-Style Fish Tacos

main meals
POINTS® Value: 7
Servings: 4
This casual street food is everywhere in Baja, Mexico. The fish is usually deep-fried, but we oven-fried it for a healthier crunch.

2 sprays cooking spray
1/2 cup yellow masa corn flour
1 tsp table salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1 pound snapper fillets, red-variety, cut into 2-inch pieces
8 medium corn tortillas, buy a few extra in case some break
1 heads romaine lettuce, outer leaves removed and remaining leaves sliced into 1/4-inch strips
5 medium radishes, red-variety, thinly sliced
2 medium scallions, thinly sliced
10 medium cherry tomatoes, quartered
1/4 cup shredded red cabbage
3/4 cup low-fat plain yogurt
2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tsp canned chipotle peppers, in adobo sauce, finely chopped
2 tbsp cilantro, fresh sprigs, for garnish

Preheat broiler to high. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil (or nonstick aluminum foil) and coat with cooking spray (helps to make fish crispy).

Place corn flour, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and paprika in a large bowl; mix to combine. Add snapper to corn flour mixture and toss to coat

Place seasoned fish on prepared baking sheet and lightly coat tops of fish with cooking spray. Broil until crispy, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.

Meanwhile, wrap tortillas in aluminum foil and place in oven to warm; place on rack furthest from heat source.

To make salad, combine lettuce, radishes, scallions, tomatoes and cabbage in a medium bowl; set aside.

To make sauce, combine yogurt, lime juice and chipotle peppers in a blender; blend until smooth.

To assemble, place a tortilla on a plate. Top with 2 to 3 pieces of fish, 1/2 cup of salad and 2 tablespoons of sauce; roll up and repeat with remaining ingredients. Yields 2 filled tortillas per serving.

Spicy Turkey Burgers with Tzatziki
Makes 2 Servings
From WW Dining for Two
Tzatziki is a Greek yogurt sauce that gained popularity in the seventies when served with the gyro sandwich – a pita filled with slices of flavorful grilled lamb, topped with tomato, grilled onion, and a dollop of tzatziki. It is a perfect low-fat, yet creamy, foil to these zesty burgers. You might like to serve the burgers with toasted pita bread. (1 pita per serving will up the POINTS value by 2) and cherry tomatoes.

1/2 lb lean ground turkey breast
1 small zucchini, coarsely shredded
1 Tbsp finely grated onion
1 Tbsp finely chopped fresh cilantro
1/2 small jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced (wear gloves to prevent irritation)
1 tsp olive or vegetable oil
1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1/3 cup finely diced or sliced seeded peeled cucumber
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/2 tsp grated lime zest
1 1/2 tsp fresh lime juice

To make the burgers, combine the turkey, zucchini, onion, cilantro, and jalapeno pepper in a bowl until well mixed. Shape into 4 patties.

Heat 1/2 teaspoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the burgers and cook until golden and cooked through, about 12 minutes, turning the burgers halfway and adding the remaining 1/2 teaspoon oil to the pan after turning them.

Meanwhile, to make the tzaziki sauce, stir together the yogurt, cucumber, garlic, lime zest, and juice in a small bowl. Serve with the burgers.

Per serving (2 burgers and generous 1/3 cup sauce): 199 cal, 4 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 0 g Trans fat, 79 mg chol, 96 mg sod, 8 g carb, 1 g fib, 31 g prot, 142 mg calc. POINTS 4

Rigatoni Bolognese
Serves 4
From WW Best Eats

2 tsp olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 pound lean ground beef (7% fat or less)
28 oz can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/4 cup dry red wine or reduced-sodium beef broth
1 fresh rosemary sprig
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon salt
Black pepper, to taste
2 cups rigatoni
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

To make the sauce, heat the oil in a large nonstick saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the beef and cook until browned, about 5 minutes, breaking it apart with a wooden spoon. Stir in the tomatoes, parsley, wine, rosemary, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened, about 45 minutes. Discard the rosemary sprig and bay leaf.

Meanwhile, cook the rigatoni according to package directions, omitting the salt if desired. Drain and transfer to a large bowl; add the sauce and toss to combine. Sprinkle with the cheese just before serving.

Per serving (1 1/2 cups): 315 cal, 7g fat, 3 g sat fat, 0 g trans fat, 35 mg chol, 543 mg sod, 43 g carb, 6 g fib, 21 g prot, 136 mg calc. POINTS 6

GOOD IDEA: Make a double or triple batch of sauce and freeze it up to 3 months. In a pinch, it can go straight from freezer to stove top or microwave, but if you have the time, a preferable method is to thaw it overnight in the refrigerator.

Tuna Steaks with Creamy Mustard Sauce
Makes 2 Servings (Plus 2 leftover Tuna Steaks)
From WW Dining for Two

Pan-searing nicely chars the outside of the tuna steaks, which we cook rare to medium-rare with a little red still in the center. If you prefer your tuna well done, simply increase the cooking time. Serve each portion with 1/2 cup of hot cooked egg noodles (and up the POINTS value by 2) and a cup of steamed broccoli florets.

1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp whole-grain Dijon mustard
1/4 tsp salt
4 (5-oz) yellowfin tuna steaks, 3/4-inch thick
2 tsp olive oil
3 scallions, sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tsp cornstarch
3 Tbsp fat-free half-and-half
3 Tbsp brandy (optional)

Combine the Worcestershire sauce, mustard, and salt in the bottom of a shallow dish. Add the tuna, turning to coat both sides; let stand 5 minutes to marinate.

Heat 1 tsp of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add tuna and cook until golden on the outside but still a little red in the center, 2-3 minutes on each side. Transfer 2 of the tuna steaks to a plate to cool, then cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days for later use. Transfer the 2 remaining tuna steaks to 2 serving plates; cover lightly with a foil tent and keep warm.

Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon oil in the same skillet. Add the scallions and garlic; cook, stirring constantly and fragrant, about 1minute. Add the broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the mixture is reduced by about one-third, about 2 minutes.

Dissolve the cornstarch in the half-and-half in a small bowl. Stir into the broth mixture in the skillet. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sauce simmers and thickens. Remove the foil from the 2 reserved tuna steaks; pour the sauce over the tuna.

Heat the brandy (if using) in a very small saucepan (do not boil); ignite and pour over the tuna.

Per serving (1 tuna steak and 3 Tbsp sauce): 218 cal, 6 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 0 g trans fat, 78 mg chol, 450mg sod, 5g carb, 1g fib, 31g prot, 104 mg calc. POINTS 5

Makes 6 Servings
From WW Pizza, Pizza
This delicious stuffed pizza has a filling similar to that in the classic Greek spinach pie, spanakopita. If you prefer, use an 8 oz bag of fresh spinach instead of frozen. For milder flavor, substitute, 1/3 cup reduced-fat mild goat cheese or 3 oz light cream cheese (Neufchatel) for the feta cheese.

2 tsp canola oil
1 onion, chopped
10 oz package frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry
1 cup fat-free ricotta cheese
1/3 cup reduced-fat feta cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper
1/2 recipe (about 1 pound) Basic pizza dough – whole wheat variation, at room temperature

Arrange one rack on the bottom rung of the oven. Preheat the oven to 450F.

Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Swirl the oil, then add the onion. Cook, stirring frequently, until the onion is tender, about 6 minutes. If the onion seems too dry, add 1/4 cup water and cook, stirring frequently, until the water has evaporated, about 3 minutes. Stir in the spinach and cook, stirring frequently, until the flavors are blended, about 3 minutes. Transfer the onion mixture to a large bowl. Stir in the ricotta cheese, feta cheese, dill, scallions, and pepper until well blended.

Sprinkle a work surface lightly with flour. Turn the dough onto the surface; cut the dough into 2 pieces. Knead each piece lightly, then with a lightly floured rolling pin, roll each into a 12-inch circle.

Spoon the spinach mixture on the dough, spreading the mixture on the dough, spreading the mixture to 1 inch from the edge. Brush the edge with water. Place the second circle of dough on top and crimp the edges to seal. Cut 4 (2 inch) slashes on top. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven until the filling is hot and the crust in golden, about 25 minutes.

Per serving (1/6 of pie): 250 Cal, 4 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 7 mg chol, 154mg sod, 41g carb, 4 g fib, 13 g prot, 175 mg calc POINTS 5

Basic Pizza Dough
Makes 2 (12 inch) pizza crusts (6 servings each)
From Weight Watchers Pizza,Pizza: 150 deliciously dazzling ways to make everyone's favorite pie
This dough makes enough for two pizzas, so you can freeze half the dough for another day. If you freeze it, thaw it in the refrigerator over night or on the counter for 1 1/2 hours. Unlike other bread dough, pizza dough only needs to rise only once. After rising, simply punch it down, then let it rest for 15 minutes before rolling or stretching to the desired shape. If you like you can let the dough rest in a floured zip-close freezer bag in the refrigerator overnight. You'll find it easiest to roll out or stretch bread dough when it's at room temperature.
1 1/2 cups warm water (105-115 F)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 pkg active dry yeast (2 1/2 tsp)
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp salt

Combine the water and sugar in a 2-cup measuring just. Sprinkle in the yeast and let stand until foamy, about 5 minutes. Stir in the oil.

Combine the flour and salt in a food processor. With the machine running, scrape the yeast mixture through the feed tube; pulse until the dough forms a ball, about 1 minute. If necessary, turn the dough onto a lightly flour surface and knead briefly until smooth and elastic.

Spray a large bowl with nonstick spray; put the dough in the bowl. Cover the bowl lightly with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm spot until it doubles in size, about 1 hour.

Punch down the dough, then cut in half. Refrigerate or freeze in floured zip-close [I have better luck with a bit of oil in the bag instead of flour- about a tsp and spread around the bag] freezer bags at this point or use as directed in the recipe.

Per serving (1/12 of dough): 174 cal, 2 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg chol, 292 mg sod, 34 g carb, 1 g fib, 5 g prot, 7 mg calc, POINTS: 3

TIP: if mixing by hand: To make bread by hand, combine the water, sugar and yeast in a large bowl; set aside until foamy. Stir in the oil, flour and salt until the dough starts to gather around the spoon. Turn the dough on to a lightly floured surface; knead until the dough is smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes.
Cornmeal Pizza Dough: Pizzas with a Mexican influence are terrific made on a cornmeal crust. Substitute 1 cup cornmeal for 1 cup of the all-purpose flour.
Per serving: (1/12 of the dough): 178 cal, 2 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg chol. 292 mg sod, 35 g carb, 2 g fib, 5 g prot, 5 mg calc, POINTS: 3
Semolina Pizza Dough: Using part semolina flour makes a crispier-crusted pizza. If you can't find semolina flour, use farina cereal. Substitute 1 1/2 cups semolina flour for 1 1/2 cups of the all-purpose flour.
Per serving (1/12 of the dough): 192 calories, 2 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg chol, 292 mg sod, 38 g carb, 2 g fib, 6 g prot, 8 mg calc, POINTS 4
Whole Wheat Pizza Dough: Whole-wheat flour makes a higher-fiber, more nutritious crust. Substitute 1 1/4 cups whole-wheat flour for 1 1/4 cups of the all-purpose flour.
Per serving (1/12 of the dough): 177 cal, 2 g fat, 0 g sat fat, 0 mg chol, 292 mg sod, 34 g carb, 3 g fib, 6 g pro, 5 mg calc, POINTS 3

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Just a bit of Menu Planning

So I've planned the menu for this week - but I haven't gotten all the recipes typed up yet - I'll get it done by Monday for Menu Plan Monday. I do have this weekends done though. We've eaten the Hashbrown Egg Stacks and the Tortellini Soup already. YUM! It's nice to have something else to add to the breakfast rotation besides pancakes (which are tasty but pointy). The only problem was that my POG (plain ole grocery) didn't have hash brown patties. I had to buy regular shredded hash browns - but it worked out fine. I just cooked them in the skillet with Pam and then divided them into 4 wedges. I'll post the recipes for this weekend below this post since that's all I've got ready.

B: Bacon, Egg and Hash Brown Stacks (4 pt)
L:Tortellini in Garlic Broth with White Beans and Greens (6 pts)
D: FiL's

L:Eggplant Parmigiana (Classic Caesar Salad & Parmesan Pull-Apart Bread) 9 pts
D:Manhattan Clam Chowder (1/4 c oyster crackers) 6 pts

Baja-Style Fish Tacos 7 pts

Spicy Turkey Burgers with Tzatziki (pita bread and cherry tomatoes) 5 pts

Rigatoni Bologonese 6 pts

Tuna Steaks with Creamy Mustard Sauce (1/2 c cooked egg noodles, 1 c steamed broccoli florets) 7 pts

Spankopizza 10 pts for 2 pcs

Bacon, Egg and Hash Brown Stacks
POINTS® Value: 4
Servings: 4
This is a nice twist on the usual potato and egg breakfast. Leave an extra "stack" in the refrigerator for a quick, microwave-reheatable meal.

2 sprays cooking spray
4 frozen hash brown potato patty, prepared without fat
2 large eggs
3 large egg whites
3 oz Canadian-style bacon, finely chopped
1 tbsp scallions, minced, green part only
1/8 tsp hot pepper sauce, optional
1/8 tsp table salt, or to taste
1/8 tsp black pepper, or to taste
8 tsp ketchup, hot and spicy variety (optional)

Coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray. Place hash brown patties in skillet; cook over medium heat on first side until golden brown, about 7 to 9 minutes. Flip patties; cook until golden brown on second side, about 5 minutes more.

Meanwhile, coat a second large nonstick skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium-low heat. In a large bowl, beat together eggs, egg whites, bacon, scallion, hot pepper sauce, salt and pepper; pour into prepared skillet and then increase heat to medium. Let eggs partially set and then scramble using a spatula. When eggs are set, but slightly glossy, remove from heat; cover to keep warm until hash browns are finished cooking.

To assemble stacks, place 1 hash brown patty on each of 4 plates. Top each with 1/4 of egg mixture and serve with 2 teaspoons of ketchup. Season to taste with salt and pepper, if desired. Yields 1 stack per serving.

Notes: Finely diced turkey bacon makes a nice alternative to the Canadian bacon in this recipe. Just make sure to cook the bacon before adding it to the eggs (could affect POINTS values).

Tortellini in Garlic Broth with White Beans and Greens
Makes 4 Servings
We cook the tortellini separately and add it at the end to keep the broth from getting too starchy. Whether you use fresh or frozen tortellini be sure to watch the time so it doesn't overcook.

3 cups fresh or frozen cheese tortellini
3 1/2 cups vegetable or chicken both
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp dried sage or rosemary leaves, crumbled
2 cups coarsely chopped or cleaned spinach or other greens
16 oz can small white or navy beans, rinsed and drained
4 sun-dried tomatoes, minced
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Cook the tortellini according to package directions, until just tender (do not overcook).

Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, bring the broth, garlic, sage, and 1 cup water to a boil. Stir in the spinach, beans and tomatoes. Reduce the heat and simmer until the spinach and tomatoes are tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tortellini; simmer about 1 minute longer. Sprinkle with the cheese and serve.

Per serving: 351 cal, 4 g fat, 2 g sat fat, 26 mg chol, 967 mg sod, 48 g carb, 6 g fib, 18g prot, 274 mg calc. POINTS 6

Shopping Flash: It pays to invest in good Parmesan cheese, such as Parmigiano-Reggiano, because a little goes a long way in the flavor department. Buy a small wedge, cut into smaller wedges, and keep them wrapped in plastic, then in foil, in the refrigerator or freezer. (It's a dry cheese, so it doesn't spoil as fast as other cheeses, and freezing won't compromise it's texture.) Bring it to room temperature, then grate what you need by hand or in a food processor.

From: WW Cook it Quick!

Eggplant Parmigiana
POINTS® Value: 3
Servings: 4
We slimmed down this fattening favorite. Baking the eggplant gives the dish a crispy texture without the fat that comes from frying.

1 spray cooking spray
1/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs, Italian-style
1 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
1 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 medium raw eggplant
2 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cup canned tomato sauce
1/2 cup part-skim mozzarella cheese, shredded

Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat a 9 X 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.

Combine bread crumbs, Parmesan cheese, Italian seasoning and garlic powder in a medium-size bowl; set aside. Remove skin from eggplant and trim off ends; slice eggplant into 1/2-inch-thick slices.

Dip eggplant first into egg whites and then into bread crumb mixture. Bake eggplant on a nonstick cookie sheet until lightly browned, about 20 to 25 minutes, flipping once.

Place a layer of eggplant on bottom of prepared baking dish, then add 1/3 of tomato sauce and 1/3 of mozzarella cheese. Repeat with 2 more layers in same order. Bake until cheese is melted and sauce is bubbling, about 10 minutes more. Slice into 4 pieces and serve.

Classic Caesar Salad
POINTS® Value: 2
Servings: 2
If you thought this salad was off limits because it's loaded with fat, think again: Our slimmed down version goes easy on the oil and cheese so you can keep this dish on the menu.

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 medium garlic cloves, sliced
1 tsp olive oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 average anchovies canned in oil, drained, finely chopped or mashed with a fork
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1/4 tsp black pepper, freshly ground
4 cups romaine lettuce, chopped, rinsed well and patted dry

Combine all ingredients, except lettuce, in a blender or food processor; purée until blended. (Note: Omit the anchovies if you do not like their flavor.)

Place lettuce leaves in a large bowl and toss with dressing until well coated. Yields about 2 cups per serving.

Parmesan Pull-Apart Bread
From WW Winning Points Wk 7 Card
Makes 10 Servings : 132 Calories, 8 g fat, 0.4g fiber 3 pts (from card - calculated with WW recipe builder it's 4 pts but I think that Pillsbury has changed their biscuits since the recipe came out too. I was able to find a generic brand of biscuits that are 9.5 oz per can but Pillsbury are now 12-16 oz for their flaky ones.) I like to use FF Italian dressing instead of margarine sometimes - drops Points by 1.
I sometimes add Mrs. Dash Tomato-Basil or or Penzy's Sandwich Sprinkle or Italian Seasoning if I want extra flavor.

3 Tbsp margarine, melted, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
One 10-oz package refrigerated buttermilk flaky biscuits (10 biscuits)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Brush 1 tsp of the margarine over the bottom and sides of a 7 1/2 X 3 1/2 X 2 1/4-inch nonstick loaf pan.

Spoon cheese into small bowl; cut each biscuit into quarters. One at a time, dip each biscuit quarter into remaining margarine, then into cheese, turning to lightly coat all sides and using all of the margarine and cheese.

In prepared loaf pan, layer coated biscuit quarters with edges touching; bake until loaf is browned, 30-35 minutes. Invert loaf pan onto serving platter; let stand in pan for 1 minute. Carefully remove pan; serve bread warm.

Manhattan Clam Chowder
From WW Dining for Two
Serves 2

If this soup is a favorite of yours, keep these few everyday ingredients in your pantry or freezer. You'll be ready to whip it up at a moment's notice. Irish-style bacon, made from pork loin, is very lean and full of flavor. If you can't find it, use Canadian bacon. For a no-meat chowder, try adding a 1-inch square piece of Parmesan cheese to the simmering soup to give it depth of flavor. If you like, serve with a few oyster crackers - 1/4 cup will increase the POINTS value by 1.

1 small onion, chopped
1 (1 oz) slice lean Irish-style bacon, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
1 carrot, diced
14 1/2 oz can sliced stewed tomatoes
1 cup bottled clam juice or fish broth
1 medium (6 oz) baking potato, scrubbed and diced
1 bay leaf
1/2 (9 oz) pkg frozen cut green beans
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
10 oz can whole baby clams in juice
1 tsp finely chopped fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried

Spray a medium nonstick saucepan with nonstick spray and set over medium heat. Add the onion, bacon, and carrot and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 8 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, clam juice, potato, and bay leaf; bring to boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.

Add the green beans and pepper; return to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until the beans are tender, about 3 minutes. Add the clams and their juice and cook until just heated through, about 2 minutes. Discard the bay leaf and stir in the thyme.

Per serving (generous 2 cups): 302 calories, 3 g Fat, 1 g Sat fat, 0 g Trans fat, 56 mg chol, 1201 mg sod, 45 g carb, 7g fib, 25g prot, 185mg calc. POINTS 5

TIP: You an easily double this recipe and refrigerate or freeze half in two (2-cup) containers ready to tote for lunch for another day.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Huevos Rancheros with Queso Fresco

First off - I ended up making the Cornbread II yesterday - and let me tell you, it was GREAT! It's almost like a cake, so if you don't want a sweet cornbread, that's not the recipe for you.

Whew! That's what hubby and I said after eating dinner last night. It was tasty, but it was a touch spicy - but not too much for me and I'm a spice wimp anymore. It was YUMMY! And it was what I like to call a Kitchen Dinner. It's one where it's so quick that you eat it in the kitchen. I did make it a bit quicker than written: I used canned refried beans (I could have also used Fantastic Foods dried refried beans too - I love those things and they take about 5 minutes to reconstitute) and I used the Mexican-style Ro-tel tomatoes and didn't bother with the cilantro and lime juice since it has some in it. I'm sure it would have tasted "fresher" with the lime juice and cilantro but it sure was quicker and easier without having to bother with it.

Huevos Rancheros with Queso Fresco

Traditionally served for breakfast, this dish piles tortillas with hearty beans, eggs, and cheese for a deliciously different dinner. Queso fresco is a soft, crumbly Mexican cheese found in the dairy section of large grocery stores or Hispanic markets, but use feta or goat cheese if you prefer.

1 (10-ounce) can diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
1 (10-ounce) can red enchilada sauce
1/3 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
2 tablespoons water
1 (16-ounce) can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
Cooking spray
4 large eggs
4 (8-inch) fat-free flour tortillas
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled queso fresco cheese

Combine the tomatoes and enchilada sauce in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer 5 minutes or until slightly thick. Remove from heat; stir in cilantro and juice. Set aside.

Place water and beans in a microwave-safe bowl, and partially mash with a fork. Cover and microwave at HIGH 2 minutes or until hot.

Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add eggs; cook 1 minute on each side or until desired degree of doneness.

Warm tortillas according to package directions. Spread about 1/3 cup beans over each tortilla; top each tortilla with 1 egg. Spoon 1/2 cup sauce around each egg; sprinkle each serving with 1/4 cup cheese.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 topped tortilla)

CALORIES 340 (26% from fat); FAT 9.8g (sat 3.2g,mono 2.7g,poly 1g); IRON 2.1mg; CHOLESTEROL 222mg; CALCIUM 153mg; CARBOHYDRATE 37.8g; SODIUM 970mg; PROTEIN 15.7g; FIBER 6.1g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2004

Sunday, October 12, 2008

We plan to have a root'n toot'n good time!

Ok. I just couldn't resist. I actually wanted to text that subject line to my MiL to warn her of today's lunch plans. Hubby wouldn't let me, he didn't think she'd appreciate it. I've been busy, even if I haven't been on here. I've been reading through the big honking Vet Nutritional book. I've got Percy's homemade diet figured out, now I need to calculate the vitamins and minerals - and yes, I am mostly doing it by hand (I am using the USDA database for those amounts). Math isn't my strong suit, and dragging up all those things I haven't used since college hasn't been much fun I must admit. :) I've had to stare at my calculators and try to remember what all those function/shift keys do again too. Mastercook has come in handy a bit though, although it's geared more towards human stuff, it has helped me to scale up the recipe itself from 1 days worth though. Once I've got the vitamins and minerals figured out, then I get to figure out which supplements are the best choice - the vet offers a few different choices (and sizes - which makes a difference for one of my guys - Miko is picky) and even some human ones might even be better, depending. The big thing I'll have to keep an eye with the diet on is the calcium/phosphorus ratio because of the age of my guys. Percy got his bloodwork re-tested on Friday but I don't have the results back yet.

I haven't written much, there was that whole 'T' key popping off of my laptop making it a bit frustrating. Since it came off under normal wear-and-tear, there's no way to just pop it back on so it stays. Hubby has hooked up a regular keyboard via the USB but it's just a bit of a different layout and I mis-type a bit. I still mostly type on the laptop until I go to hit the t key for little things. I am just mostly avoiding typing long things. I could do as two people have suggested: One suggested just totally leave out the t and one suggested just substitute y's. Since I touch type I think both would be hard to do since my brain is so wired to do it without thinking. But then I got to thinking, why not give one of the other barely used keys a chance to shine. How abouq a key or xwo qhaq hardly ever geqs xo see qee lighx of day? Or maybe jusy alxernaqe beyween qhem giving each of xhem a chance qo shine? Ix would mean possibly geqxing more poinys during Scrabble games, righq? ;)

I've had my menu planned for quite a while, actually ever since I went shopping for last weeks menu. Since the leeks came bundled as 3's and they were ever so loverly, and MiL said that she was thinking of having White Beans and Cornbread like her dad used to like to eat that gave me 2 meals right off the bat. So I am going to present to you Menu Plan Monday (Sunday). :) For more menu ideas, don't forget to visit:For more menu ideas, don't forget to visit: I'm an Organizing Junkie

Sunday: Slow Cooked Navy Beans with Ham with cornbread (recipe below)
Monday: Potato Leek Soup (recipe below)
Tuesday: James Beef BBQ (from the freezer - recipe below)
Wednesday: Turkey Burgers (From Costco by Jennie-O)
Thursday: Chili with cornbread (recipe below)
Friday: Chez JJ pizza (recipe given a few times already)

Slow Cooked Navy Beans with Ham

1 lb dry navy beans (2 1/2 cups)
5 cups water
1 garlic clove, minced
1 ham hock
1 tsp salt

Soak beans in water at least 4 hours in slow cooker. (I actually did a quick soak instead: cover by water by 1 inch and brought to a boil on the stove, boiled for 2 minutes, removed from the heat and covered and let sit for 1 hour. Drained and continued as directed.)

Add garlic and ham hock.

Cover. Cook on low 7-8 hours, or High 4 hours. Add salt during last hour of cooking time. (I add salt at beginning and let it cook all day on low but it's an older crockpot.)

Remove ham hock from cooker. Allow to cool. Cut ham from hock and stir back into bean mixture. Correct seasonings and serve in soup bowls with hot corn bread.

Variation: For added flavor, stir in chopped onion, 2-3 chopped celery stalks, 2-3 sliced carrots, and 3-4 cups canned tomatoes into cooker with garlic and ham hock. (I do not add tomatoes until beans are done -but that being said, I did add the rest of the stuff and bay leaves too. I did not add any tomatoes at all.)

Makes 8-10 servings
From Julia Lapp New Holland, PA "Fix-It and Forget-It Cookbook"

I'll give you two recipes for cornbread, I haven't decided which I'm going to make this time. I'm leaning toward the large pan (9x13) just so I won't have to make it twice. But cornbread is best fresh made, and it's not like it takes a long time. I am also debating if I want to go sweet or not too - usually I'm a not sweet cornbread person.

Cornbread I

2 c self-rising cornmeal
1/4 cup sugar (can omit if you don't like sweet)
1 egg
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup oil

Preheat oven to 450. Heat oil in an iron skillet. Combine everything but the oil. Pour batter in the skillet and bake for about 25 minutes. Can add grated cheddar cheese, chopped jalapeno peppers or crumbles of crisp cooked bacon.

[To make your own self rising cornmeal: 2 cups self-rising corn meal = 1/2 cup sifted all-purpose flour, 1 1/2 cups corn meal, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp baking soda]

Cornbread II ( Sweet 9x13 pan)

2 cups self-rising flour
2 cups self-rising cornmeal
2 cups sugar
1 stick butter or margarine, melted (1/2 cup)
4 eggs
2 1/2 cups buttermilk (or milk with dash of apple cider vinegar)

Preaheat oven at 350. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan and bake 45 minutes.

Simple Potato Soup with Carrots (with variations)
Makes 4 Servings
The simplest of potato soups (well, not really - you could omit the carrots), still quite delicious. This is a soup you could build upon: Add cut up turnips, diced tomatoes, or any other vegetables you like.

1 Tbsp butter or extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium potatoes, any type, peeled and cut into small cubes
3 carrotsm peeled and cut into small cubes
salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 cups chicken, beef, or vegetable stock, preferably warmed

Place the butter or oil in a large, deep saucepan or casserole and turn the heat to medium. When the butter melts or the oil is hot, add the vegetables. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for 2 or 3 minutes.

Add the stock and cook until the vegetables are very tender, about 20 minutes. (You may prepare the soup in advance up to this point. Cover, refrigerate for up to 2 days, and reheat before preceeding.) Adjust seasoning and serve.

POTATO SOUP WITH LEEKS: Substitute 2 large leeks, well washed and chopped, for the carrots; or add the leeks in addition to the carrots. Proceed as above.

PUREED POTATO SOUP WITH LEEKS: Make the above variation with or without carrots. Add 1/2 to 1 cup cream, milk or half-and-half. Puree in a blender, then reheat. Adjust seasoning, garnish with minced chives, and serve.

From: "How to Cook Everything" by Mark Bittman

James Beef Barbecue
Serving Size : 6

2 Lbs beef roast
4 Bermuda Onions -- cut into 1/8" thick rings
Add to taste:
Garlic Salt
2 Tbsps Horseradish
2 Tbsps Mustard
1 C Ketchup
2 Tbsps Browning Sauce -- optional (Kitchen Boquet)
2 Tbsps Worcestershire Sauce

Add just enough water to cover onions. Add meat and stock, then mustard,
catsup, etc... Bring to a boil for 1/2 hour. Let simmer for 1 hour until
meat falls apart.

Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 395 Calories; 24g Fat (54.8%
calories from fat); 26g Protein; 19g Carbohydrate; 2g Dietary Fiber; 87mg
Cholesterol; 694mg Sodium. Exchanges: 3 1/2 Lean Meat; 1 Vegetable; 2 1/2
Fat; 1 Other Carbohydrates.

This is the chili I usually make. I do it in the crockpot. I've found that I don't need the extra 2 cups of water if I do it in the CP. And it's pretty spicy, so keep that in mind, depending on your brand of chili powder - so 3 Tbsp of chili powder may be too much for you - it is for me. I also figure that about 3 medium tomatoes would equal about a 15 oz can or so of tomatoes.

Wendy's Chili
Recipe from: Top Secret Recipes
Servings: 12

Here's a favorite recipe for chili that clones the stuff served at the Wendy's chain. Dave Thomas, Wendy's founder, has been serving this chili since 1969, the year the first Wendy's opened its doors. Over the years the recipe has changed a bit, but this version here is an amazing copy of the version of chili served in the early 90's. Try topping it with some chopped onion and cheddar cheese, as you can request in the restaurant.

2 pounds ground beef
One 29 ounce can tomato sauce
One 29 ounce can kidney beans, with liquid
One 29 ounce can pinto beans, with liquid
1 cup diced onion (1 medium onion)
1/2 cup diced green chili (2 chilies)
1/4 cup diced celery (1 stalk)
3 medium tomatoes, chopped
2 teaspoons cumin powder
3 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups water

Brown the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat; drain off the fat.

Using a fork, crumble the cooked beef into pea-size pieces.

In a large pot, combine the beef plus all the remaining ingredients, and bring to a simmer over low heat. Cook, stirring every 15 minutes, for 2 to 3 hours.

For spicier chili, add 1/2 teaspoon more black pepper.
For much spicier chili, add 1 teaspoon black pepper and 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper.
And for a real stomach stinger, add 5 or 6 sliced jalapeño peppers to the pot.
Leftovers can be frozen for several months.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Italian Eggs over Spinach and Polenta

I made this for breakfast Sunday morning and it was wonderful and dead easy! It would make an easy dinner too!

Italian Eggs over Spinach and Polenta

This breakfast is good any time of day. Look for the polenta in the refrigerated produce section.

1 (16-ounce) tube of polenta, cut into 12 slices
Cooking spray
2 cups fat-free tomato-basil pasta sauce
1 (6-ounce) package fresh baby spinach
4 large eggs
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded Asiago cheese

Preheat broiler.

Arrange polenta slices on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Coat tops of polenta with cooking spray. Broil 3 minutes or until thoroughly heated.

While polenta heats, bring sauce to a simmer in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Stir in spinach; cover and cook for 1 minute or until spinach wilts. Stir to combine. Make 4 indentations in top of spinach mixture using the back of a wooden spoon. Break 1 egg into each indentation. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes or until eggs are desired degree of doneness. Sprinkle with cheese. Place 3 polenta slices on each of 4 plates; top each serving with one-fourth of spinach mixture and 1 egg.

CALORIES 264 (30% from fat); FAT 8.8g (sat 4g,mono 2.9g,poly 0.9g); IRON 3.2mg; CHOLESTEROL 224mg; CALCIUM 238mg; CARBOHYDRATE 29.4g; SODIUM 780mg; PROTEIN 15.4g; FIBER 2.9g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2005

Menu Plan Monday

This weeks menu come from Cooking Light Magazine. I used their website yesterday to help me figure out what recipes to use. Hubby wanted Homemade Mac & Cheese this week and we have some bread leftover from making his daily sandwiches so I'll use that instead of the French Bread for the French Toast. One thing I had forgotten about, and I'll have to remember - you can put all your chosen recipes into a shopping list, and it will make said shopping list for you -all nice and pretty in the proper sections you'd most likely find the items in your grocery store. The other nice thing, you're not only searching Cooking Light. The website Cooking Light uses is called and it also has recipes for other magazines:

* Coastal Living
* Cottage Living
* Health
* MyHomeIdeas (pulls together all the home stuff from all the magagzines)
* Southern Accents (homes, gardens, arts & antiques)
* Southern Living
* Sunset

Anyway, not to sound like an ad, it's just something I had fogotten about.

Last weeks menu was a hit btw - the only thing I didn't like was not having much in the way of leftovers coming the weekend but that's ok. I'll plan for it better come this weekend. I'm not going to think about it right now. I will have leftovers of the Mac & Cheese because I won't cut that down. I was expecting to have leftovers of the pizza, but hubby loved it so much that we didn't. The rest of these recipes I'll cut down so we will only have 2 servings. I'm also going to give you the original recipes.

For more menu ideas visit I'm an Organizing Junkie

Thai-Style Ground Beef
Three-Cheese Macaroni and Cheese
French Toast Waffles
Braised Chicken with Chickpeas and Tomatoes (Homemade Chicken Stock)
Mushroom-Prosciutto Pizza

Thai-Style Ground Beef

This dish appeals to adults and kids alike, which answers Sasha Wall's challenge to prepare one dinner that satisfies the whole family. Serve with lime wedges. Enjoy leftovers with warm tortillas.

Cooking spray
1 cup thinly sliced leek
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1 pound lean ground sirloin
1 teaspoon red curry paste (such as Thai Kitchen)
1 cup tomato sauce
1/2 cup light coconut milk
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon grated lime rind
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
3 cups hot cooked short-grain rice
Iceberg lettuce wedges (optional)
Chopped cilantro
Chopped green onions (optional)

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add leek; sauté 5 minutes. Add garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add beef; cook 7 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring to crumble. Stir in curry paste and tomato sauce; cook until half of liquid evaporates (about 2 minutes). Add milk and next 4 ingredients (through fish sauce); cook 2 minutes or until slightly thickened. Serve with the rice and lettuce wedges, if desired. Garnish with cilantro and green onions, if desired.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: about 1/2 cup beef mixture and 3/4 cup rice)

CALORIES 353 (16% from fat); FAT 6.4g (sat 3.2g, mono 1.7g, poly 0.6g); IRON 6.3mg; CHOLESTEROL 49mg; CALCIUM 29mg; CARBOHYDRATE 51.5g; SODIUM 723mg; PROTEIN 23.1g; FIBER 2.8g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2006

Three-Cheese Macaroni and Cheese

"If I go more than a day or two without pasta, watch out, because I get nasty," jokes one user. Other users admit hankering for high-quality cheese. Keep a close eye on the flour while it cooks so it doesn't burn. For a weeknight supper, bake the macaroni in an 8-inch square baking dish for 35 minutes.

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion (about 1 medium)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 garlic clove, minced
1 1/2 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups uncooked elbow macaroni (about 8 ounces)
Cooking spray
2/3 cup (about 2 1/2 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
2/3 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onion to pan; cook 8 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Add flour and garlic; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in milk and bay leaf; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add Gorgonzola, 1/2 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, and salt; stir until cheeses melt. Discard bay leaf.

2. Preheat oven to 375°.

3. Cook pasta in boiling water 5 minutes or until almost tender, omitting salt and fat; drain well. Add pasta to cheese mixture, stirring well. Place about 1/2 cup pasta mixture into each of 6 (1-cup) ramekins coated with cooking spray. Sprinkle evenly with mozzarella. Top evenly with remaining pasta mixture. Combine remaining 1/4 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano and panko; sprinkle evenly over pasta mixture. Spray lightly with cooking spray; sprinkle with black pepper. Bake at 375° for 25 minutes or until heated.

Yield: 6 servings (serving size: about 1 ramekin)

CALORIES 321 (28% from fat); FAT 9.9g (sat 5.6g,mono 2.3g,poly 0.9g); IRON 1.5mg; CHOLESTEROL 26mg; CALCIUM 332mg; CARBOHYDRATE 40.8g; SODIUM 487mg; PROTEIN 17.4g; FIBER 2.4g

Cooking Light, SEPTEMBER 2008

French Toast Waffles

A waffle maker creates a crisp, brown French toast without a skillet. Just make sure you start with slightly hardened bread so that the toast won't be soggy. Serve toast with fresh berries, powdered sugar, or maple syrup.

Cooking spray
1 cup fat-free milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 large eggs
16 (1/2-inch-thick) slices day-old French bread (about 7 ounces)

Coat waffle iron with cooking spray, and preheat.

Combine milk and the next 5 ingredients (milk through eggs), stirring well with a whisk. Place bread in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish; pour milk mixture over bread, turning to coat. Let stand 5 minutes.

Place 4 bread slices on hot waffle iron. Cook 3 to 5 minutes or until done; repeat the procedure with the remaining bread.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 4 waffles)

CALORIES 236 (27% from fat); FAT 7g (sat 3g,mono 2.4g,poly 0.8g); IRON 1.7mg; CHOLESTEROL 115mg; CALCIUM 129mg; CARBOHYDRATE 32.5g; SODIUM 395mg; PROTEIN 9.6g; FIBER 1.6g

Cooking Light, JANUARY 2003

Braised Chicken with Chickpeas and Tomatoes

Total cost: $9.33/Cost per serving: $1.17. This dish uses dark meat chicken parts, which are cheaper and more flavorful than breast meat. Purchase leg quarters, if available, and split them into drumstick and thigh portions before cooking to save even more.

1 cup dried chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
4 cups water
1 cup thinly sliced onion (about 1), divided
6 garlic cloves, chopped
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 chicken drumsticks, skinned (about 1 1/4 pounds)
4 chicken thighs, skinned (about 1 3/4 pounds)
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
2 cups chopped plum tomato (about 5)
1/2 cup Homemade Chicken Stock
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Lemon wedges (optional)

Sort and wash chickpeas; place in a large Dutch oven. Cover with water to 2 inches above chickpeas; cover and let stand 8 hours. Drain chickpeas.

Place 1 1/2 cups chickpeas, 4 cups water, 1/2 cup onion, garlic, and bay leaf in pan; bring to a boil. (Reserve leftover chickpeas for another use.) Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 45 minutes or until beans are just tender. Drain chickpea mixture in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/2 cup cooking liquid. Set chickpea mixture aside.

Heat oil in pan over medium-high heat. Dredge chicken in flour. Add chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes, browning on all sides. Remove from pan.

Add remaining 1/2 cup onion to pan. Sauté 4 minutes or until tender. Add vinegar, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Cook 1 minute or until liquid evaporates.

Add 2 cups tomato, Homemade Chicken Stock, and reserved cooking liquid to pan. Add chickpea mixture, and bring to a boil. Place chicken on top of chickpeas, and sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 40 minutes or until chicken is done and chickpeas are tender. Discard bay leaf. Serve with lemon wedges, if desired.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 chicken leg or thigh and 3/4 cup bean mixture)

CALORIES 261 (34% from fat); FAT 9.8g (sat 2.4g,mono 3.9g,poly 2.3g); IRON 2.6mg; CHOLESTEROL 82mg; CALCIUM 36mg; CARBOHYDRATE 14.8g; SODIUM 244mg; PROTEIN 27.7g; FIBER 3.2g

Cooking Light, OCTOBER 2007

Homemade Chicken Stock

Total cost: $.87/Cost per serving: $.11. This recipe yields 48 ounces of stock. The same amount of canned broth would cost about $4.32. Use this homemade stock in soups, stews, rice, and pan sauces.

This recipe goes with Fresh Vegetable Barley, Braised Chicken with Chickpeas and Tomatoes

Bones from a cooked (4-pound) chicken
5 whole peppercorns
3 quarts water
2 sprigs parsley (optional)
1 medium onion, quartered

Preheat oven to 400°.

Split carcass in half lengthwise. Place carcass halves in bottom of broiler pan with juices from Roast Garlic-Lemon Chicken.

Bake at 400° for 1 hour, turning bones once after 30 minutes.

Scrape bones, juices, and browned bits into a large Dutch oven. Add peppercorns, 3 quarts water, parsley, if desired, and onion to pan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer 2 hours; skim surface occasionally, discarding solids.

Strain stock through a sieve into a bowl; discard solids. Cool to room temperature. Cover and chill 8 to 24 hours. Skim fat from surface; discard. Refrigerate stock in an airtight container for up to 5 days, or freeze for up to 3 months.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 3/4 cup)

CALORIES 5 (54% from fat); FAT 0.3g (sat 0.1g,mono 0.1g,poly 0.1g); IRON 0.0mg; CHOLESTEROL 2mg; CALCIUM 8mg; CARBOHYDRATE 0.1g; SODIUM 9mg; PROTEIN 0.6g; FIBER 0.0g

Cooking Light, OCTOBER 2007

Mushroom-Prosciutto Pizza

This simple pizza flavored with cremini mushrooms and Italian ham can be made in just about 20 minutes.

Cooking spray
8 ounces sliced cremini mushrooms
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
1 (10-ounce) Italian cheese-flavored thin pizza crust (such as Boboli)
2 ounces prosciutto, cut into thin strips
1/3 cup (about 1 1/2 ounces) shredded fontina cheese

Preheat oven to 450°.

Heat a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add mushrooms and shallots to pan; sauté 7 minutes or until mushrooms are tender. Add garlic and thyme; sauté 1 minute. Stir in vinegar; remove from heat.

Place crust on the bottom rack of oven. Bake at 450° for 4 minutes.

Place the crust on a baking sheet. Spread mushroom mixture evenly over crust; sprinkle evenly with prosciutto and fontina cheese. Bake at 450° for 6 minutes or until cheese melts.

Tips: For a crisp crust, bake the pizza crust on the lowest rack for a few minutes before adding the toppings. Presliced button mushrooms can substitute for the creminis.

Yield: 4 servings

CALORIES 273 (28% from fat); FAT 8.4g (sat 3.7g,mono 2.4g,poly 0.8g); IRON 2.3mg; CHOLESTEROL 23mg; CALCIUM 254mg; CARBOHYDRATE 34.5g; SODIUM 723mg; PROTEIN 15.3g; FIBER 0.4g

Cooking Light, JUNE 2004