Tuesday, March 31, 2015

80--- Split Pea Chicken Chili {Slow Cooker}

Do you like a thicker chili?  How about adding in some split peas?  This quick slow cooker recipe is delicous and filling- with lots of protein and fiber.

Split Pea Chicken Chili
Serves 10

1 onion, coarsely chopped
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, trimmed
6 cups low sodium chicken broth
24 oz green salsa of your choice
16 oz canned green chiles
2 cans no sodium added white beans, drained and rinsed
1 lb dry split peas
2 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker (yes you add the chicken breasts uncooked and whole).  Cook on low for 10 hours.

Remove the chicken breasts, shred, then return them to the crock pot.

Serve immediately!

Nutrition info per 1 1/4 cups: 231 calories, 1 g fat, 19 g protein, 48 g carbohydrates, 12 g fiber, 574 mg sodium

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

80--- Cream of Power Greens Soup

Do you purchase the giganormous bag of organic power greens from Costco (or your local big box store)? I do. It's a deal! 

But with my last purchase, my plans for them were slightly derailed due to a busy schedule, travel, etc.  So last night I used them ALL in a delicious soup.  It was a winner!!

Whew! Food wastage averted once again.

Cream of Power Greens Soup
Serves 6-7

1/2 large yellow onion
2 tsp minced garlic
1 Tbsp olive oil
4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
2 lb fresh greens (you may use power greens or a combo of stemmed kale, collard greens, spinach, etc)
2 oz shredded Parmesan cheese
1 cup half & half
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp water

Heat olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat.  Add onion and garlic and saute until fragrant and lightly brown, 3-4 minutes.  Add vegetable broth and bring to a boil.  Add in greens (yes they take up the entire pot), reduce heat to medium-low, cover and cook for 7-8 minutes, or until greens are softened. 

Use an immersion blender to puree soup mixture until smooth.  Stir in cheese, half & half, and pepper and whisk well to mix.  In a small bowl, blend cornstarch and water, the add to the soup.  Return mixture to a boil for 2-3 minutes, stirring constantly.  When soup is slightly thickened it is ready to serve!

Nutrition Info per 1 1/2 cups: 152 calories, 8 g fat, 8 g protein, 11 g carbohydrates, 5 g fiber, 345 mg sodium

Thursday, March 19, 2015

80--- Warm Sweet Potato and Basil Vegetable Wraps

This is a copycat recipe from a great little restaurant in Canmore, Canada called Harvest.  The minute I tried this wrap I knew that I had to recreate it.

Warm Sweet Potato and Basil Vegetable Wraps
Serves 4

4 flour tortillas (12" are best)
1 large yam, sliced into 1/4" thick slices
Olive oil spray
Dashes of salt and pepper
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
3 shallots, thinly sliced
20-25 large fresh basil leaves
3 oz crumbled feta cheese
1 Tbsp milk
1 Tbsp maple syrup

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place sliced yams on to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.  Spray lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with a dash of salt and pepper.  Bake on the center rack for 30 minutes, or until soft and lightly golden brown.

When yams have 10 minutes left to cook, combine cherry tomato halves and balsamic vinegar in a small oven-safe bowl.  Place the bowl on the top rack of the oven and cook for 10 minutes.

While yams and tomatoes are cooking, spray a nonstick skillet with olive oil spray, then add sliced shallots.  Cook over medium-high heat, or until cooked through and lightly golden.

Combine feta, milk, and maple syrup in a small food processor and mix until smooth.

To assemble; spread 1/4 of the feta mixture onto each tortilla, concentrating the spread in the center.  In the center of the tortilla (leaving enough room for the short edges to fold over), layer 2-3 slices of yam, 4-5 basil leaves, 1/4 of the sauteed shallots, and several cherry tomatoes.  Wrap the tortilla as you would a burrito (fold ends over, then fold the long-sides over the ingredients). 

I chose to reheat my wraps in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until golden brown (optional but TOTALLY worth it).  Slice wraps in half and serve!

Nutrition Info per 1 wrap: 294 calories, 10 g fat, 10 g protein, 42 g carbohydrate, 16 g fiber, 432 mg sodium

Monday, March 16, 2015

20--- Blarney Cake

This recipe is inspired by Blarney Stones- a more time-intensive St. Patrick's Day dessert.  With a toddler at my feet, I'm all for the quick and easy version these days.

Blarney Cake
Serves 8

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp almond extract
2 cups flour, sifted

1/2 cup butter, softened
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1/3 cup whole milk
1 cup roasted peanuts, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Use a mixer to combine butter and sugar until fluffy.  Add in eggs, one at a time, then add almond extract and mix well.  With mixer running, add in flour gradually and mix until just combined.

Pour batter into a loaf pan sprayed with baking spray.  Bake for 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.  Note you may need to place an aluminum foil tent over the top of the pan if the cake is browning too quickly.  Remove the cake from the oven, allow to cool for 15 minutes prior to loosening the edges with a knife and transferring cake to a cooling rack.

Once cake is room temperature, mix the frosting.  Use a mixture to whip the butter, then gradually add powdered sugar until well mixed.  Add in vanilla extract and milk as you continue to mix.  When frosting is light and fluffy it is done!

Frost the top and sides of the cake, then sprinkle with chopped peanuts and press gently to get them to adhere to the frosting.  Refrigerate until ready to serve, then bring to room temperature for 20 minutes prior to slicing and serving.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Spring Recipe Roundup

I apologize if you are reading this post and you live on the east coast.

Spring has sprung in Montana!

The 60 degree temperatures and budding trees are making me think of all of the soon-to-be spring vegetables that will be available and FRESH very soon.

Here are a few of my favorite springtime recipes to get us ready!





Thursday, March 5, 2015

80--- Maple Almond Lentil Granola

This is yummy I promise.

Even my toddler eats it.

Lentils are a great, high fiber source of vegetable protein! Just what your granola needs.

Maple Almond Lentil Granola
Serves 10

3 cups rolled oats
3 cups cooked lentils (1 cup dry lentils boiled in 3 cups water until soft- then drained well)
1 cup slivered almonds
1/3 cup pure maple syrup
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 tsp maple extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Combine all ingredients in a large bowl.  Place parchment paper on two large baking sheets.  Spread mixture onto the sheets evenly, then bake for 30-40 minutes or until crunchy, stirring the mixture every 10 minutes to ensure outer edges do not burn.

Let cool completely before storing in an airtight container. 

Nutrition Info per 1/2 cup: 292 calories, 12 g fat, 11 g protein, 41 g carbohydrates, 8 g fiber, 143 mg sodium

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

80--- Hummus-Stuffed Deviled Eggs

Deviled eggs are an indulgence for many.  But with eggs being a great source of protein, they don't have to be limited to special occasions!  This recipe incorporates some healthy hummus into the filling, making them a lighter treat that you can enjoy daily.  I am keeping some yolks in the mix however, for flavor and to keep the healthy complete proteins (yes- the majority are located in the yolk!).

Hummus-Stuffed Deviled Eggs
Makes one dozen

6 eggs, hard-boiled, halved (reserve two yolks)
1/3 cup hummus (see my quick and easy homemade recipe below)
1/2 tsp yellow mustard (use dijon if you wish)
1/4 tsp finely minced onion
2 egg yolks (from your hard-boiled eggs)
Dash salt
Dash ground black pepper
Dash paprika for garnish 
A few chopped chives for garnish

Easy Hummus
Makes ~ 1 cup

1 can no-sodium-added chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp tahini
1/2 Tbsp minced garlic
Juice from one lemon
1/2 tsp salt
Dash ground black pepper

For hummus: Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix until a smooth puree is formed.  Add a small amount of water if a thinner consistency is desired.

For eggs: Mix together hummus, mustard, onion, egg yolk, salt, and pepper in a small food processor until smooth.  Fill each egg half with the mixture, then garnish with paprika and chives.

Nutrition info per 1 deviled egg (1/2 whole egg): 36 calories, 2 g fat, 3 g protein, 1 g carbohydrate, 75 mg sodium