More Foodie Adventures from the Pacific Northwest … and a Vegetarian Side Dish Recipe for Cowboy Caviar (Part 2) {Podcast #229}

I still can’t believe my niece, Jennifer, just got married. I can remember the day she was born like it was yesterday …  and not 27 years ago! Jen married the man of her dreams a few weeks ago at the Red Barn Studios in Chehalis, Washington, and I can still taste the fresh shellfish and Northwest flavors from her Big Day.

Jen and Rand Wedding via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Here were Jen and Rand cutting the cake. In case you’re wondering, the cake was created with luscious layers of carrot cake, white cake, and a boysenberry filling.

On this week’s Cooking with the Moms podcast, Liz and I dish about my recent foodie adventures in the Pacific Northwest. I share the highlights here and also in Part 1 of my two-part Northwest food series (which included a recipe for Kale and Berry Health Smoothie).

Chef Xihn via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

 Chef Xinh, all five feet of her, is swift with a knife, and you should see her shuck an oyster! She’s won the West Coast Oyster Shucking Championship five times, and she’s now the owner and executive chef of Xinh’s Clam and Oyster House in Shelton, Washington. Lucky for me and everyone else at the wedding, Chef Xinh and Taylor Shellfish Farms catered the event.

Curried Mussels via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

 Chef Xinh’s famous Mussels with Curry Sauce features fresh shelled mussels sauteed in a Vietnamese style curry made with coconut milk, lemongrass, cayenne pepper, ground peanuts and a seafood sauce. She serves it with jasmine rice.

Dad, Mom, Chris, Lori, and Janice at Wedding via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

My sister, Lori (shown here with Dad, Mom, her husband Chris, and me), kept us well fed while we were in Olympia.

Baked Halibut, Wheatberries, Beets, and Grilled Corn via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

 On our first night in Olympia, Lori served us a meal of baked halibut, wheat berries, beets from her garden, and corn on the grill.

Cowboy Caviar -- made with black-eyed peas, avocado, cilantro, and corn

Lori and her husband have a boat, and this is one of the salads she made before we took a trip around the Puget Sound. I know. I know. Rough life …

Cowboy Caviar

Makes 8 Servings

Lori’s friend, Kathy, gave her this recipe years ago, and it’s now Lori’s go-to recipe for picnics and excursions on the boat.

  • One 15-ounce can black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
  • One 11-ounce can shoepeg corn
  • 1 red bell pepper or 2 roma tomatoes, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 bunch cilantro, chopped
  • 1 ripe avocado, seeded, peeled, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1/4 cup expeller pressed canola oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1. Combine the black-eyed peas, corn, bell pepper, green onions, cilantro, and avocado in a large bowl.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the canola oil, vinegar, garlic, cumin, salt, and pepper until well combined.  Stir into the bean mixture.

Nutrition Information: 180 calories, 11g fat (1g saturated, 0.7g omega-3), 290mg sodium, 19g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 5g protein, 30% vitamin A, 50% vitamin C

Print Recipe

Nancy, Janice, Diane at Wedding via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

I love weddings. Here I am celebrating with my sister Diane (right) and my sister-in-law, Nancy. :)

If you want to see more photos from my trip to Olympia, check out our Flickr page.

Pumpkin Nutrition … and a Recipe for Pumpkin Banana Smoothie

I woke up bright and early today, packed up a few coolers, and headed to New England Cable News for a “live” TV food segment on Spicing Up Fall with Pumpkins. During the segment (which you can watch on the NECN website), I talked to host Steve Aveson about pumpkin nutrition—it’s packed with vitamin A, fiber, and antioxidants like lutein—and showed off three kid-pleasing recipes: Pumpkin Banana Smoothie, Ghoulishly-Good Stuffed Sugar Pumpkin, and Black Bean Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce. (The smoothie and enchilada recipes can also be found on our new family recipe app, Meal Makeovers.)

Pumpkin Banana Smoothie via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Each serving of this luscious smoothie has 100% of your vitamin A for the day. Oh, and it’s also delicious!

Pumpkin Banana Smoothie

Makes 2 Servings

When the month of October rolls around, our thoughts turn to pumpkin, a super food packed with immune-boosting vitamin A, fiber, and antioxidants like lutein, which is good for eye health. It may seem strange to add pumpkin to a smoothie, but trust us … this smoothie is beyond awesome! We make it with some canned pure pumpkin, protein-rich Greek yogurt, low-fat milk, pumpkin pie spice, and vanilla extract. And then we add a banana and a few drizzles of honey for a super-sweet touch. Serve with breakfast, as a snack, or for a spooky Halloween treat!

  • 1 small ripe banana, frozen
  • 1/2 cup 1% low-fat milk
  • 1/2 cup 0%-fat vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup canned 100% pure pumpkin
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1.  Break the banana into a few pieces. Place in a blender with the milk, yogurt, pumpkin, honey, vanilla extract, and pumpkin pie spice.

2. Blend until well combined. Place a few cubes of ice in two glasses. Pour smoothie over ice, drizzle with honey as desired, and serve each with a straw.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 cup):  130 calories, 1g fat (0g saturated, g omega-3), 55mg sodium, 23g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 7g protein, 100% vitamin A, 15% calcium

Print Recipe

Planning a TV segment takes a lot of effort—shopping, prepping, gathering props, figuring out what to say!—but it’s worth the effort. I had a blast hanging out with the NECN crew and sharing my nutrition knowledge and Meal Makeover Mom recipes with viewers.

Liz on NECN talking pumpkins!

Lights, camera, action!

pumpkin segment on NECN

NECN prep

Here’s what my house looked like the night before when I was laying out my props. Note to self: Don’t forget the extension cord and the ice….

A Gluten-Free Recipe for Autumn Apple Quinoa Salad … and More News on Our Recipe App, “Meal Makeovers” (Podcast #228)

It’s been a few weeks since we launched our new recipe app, Meal Makeovers. We hope those of you who’ve downloaded it—it’s available on iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch—are using it in good health! On this week’s Cooking with the Moms radio podcast, we tell you all about the app, and we share our latest app and blog recipe for Autumn Apple Quinoa Salad. The great thing about this recipe is that it’s nutritious thanks to the quinoa, apples, walnuts, dried cranberries, and Cheddar cheese as well as versatile (serve it as a lunch box or dinner side dish), gluten free, and incredibly delicious.

Meal Makeovers app - quinoa salad

You can find our Autumn Apple Quinoa Salad on our new recipe app, Meal Makeovers!

Apple walnut quinoa salad

Quinoa is often referred to as an ancient grain, but technically, it’s a seed. It’s gluten free, and we love it in this simple side dish recipe made with apples, walnuts, cranberries, and Cheddar cheese. Read on for the recipe as well as our tried-and-true technique for cooking up fluffy (not mushy) quinoa.

Autumn Apple Quinoa Salad

Makes 6 Servings

Every autumn, our kids go crazy over all the crisp, delicious apples available at the farmers’ market. Snacking on apples is easy—just slice ‘em up and enjoy—but sometimes it’s nice to use them in recipes like this easy side dish. Check out all the great nutrition per serving: almost 1 gram of heart-healthy omega-3 fat, 8 grams protein, and 3 grams fiber.

  • 1 cup quinoa
  • 1½ cups water
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 ounces reduced-fat white or orange Cheddar cheese, cut into 1/4-inch dice (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1 medium red or green apple, cut into 1/4-inch dice (1 1/4 cups)
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries

1. Place the quinoa in a fine-mesh strainer and rinse very well several times under cold running water. Drain well. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place the quinoa in the skillet and “toast,” stirring frequently, until the quinoa is dry and gives off a nutty aroma, 4 to 5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, place the water or broth in a medium-size saucepan and bring to a boil. Add the “toasted” quinoa and stir well. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer until the water is absorbed and the quinoa is fluffy, 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand, covered, for an additional 5 to 10 minutes. Fluff with a fork.

3. Transfer the quinoa to a large bowl and fluff gently with a fork every few minutes until the grains cool.

4. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, maple syrup, mustard, salt, and pepper until well combined. Set aside.

5. Gently stir the cheese, apples, walnuts, and cranberries into the quinoa. Stir in the dressing. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information per Serving (about 1 cup): 330 calories, 18g fat (4.5g saturated, 0.9g omega-3), 190mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 8g protein, 10% calcium

Print Recipe

To learn more about our Meal Makeovers app, check out the description in the iTunes store.  And for more quinoa recipes, scroll down for links to some of our other creations …

Maple Quinoa Crunch
> Maple Quinoa Crunch

> Greek Quinoa Salad with Feta and Dill

> Crunchy Quinoa with Almonds and Apricots

> Polka Dot Squash Quinoa

 

Family Dinner Dilemmas Solved with a Recipe for Southwest Corn, Rice & Bean Casserole

What’s your biggest family dinner dilemma? Now that the kids are back in school and families are back to their usual routines, we asked our Facebook fans to weigh in on that very question. Here are their top five answers: (1) coming up with meals to satisfy everyone in the family … especially picky eaters, (2) finding last-minute recipes that are easy to make, (3) getting organized … AKA meal planning, (4) preparing healthy meals with on-hand, pantry staples (i.e. nothing fancy) and (5) making meals that vegetarians and meat eaters both love. Phew. We’re tired just thinking about it. But to the rescue is our newest recipe for Southwest Corn, Rice & Bean Casserole. This dinner has it all!

Southwest Corn, Rice & Bean Casserole via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Our recipe comes together quickly with nutrient-rich convenience ingredients including canned beans, instant brown rice, salsa, eggs, shredded cheese, and Del Monte’s new Southwest Corn with Poblano & Red Peppers. The company recently sent us some samples (along with Del Monte’s other new seasoned veggie variety: French Style Green Beans with Roasted Garlic), and they challenged us to create a dish that families would adore using one of the new products.

ingredients for southwest casserole

 Six ingredients. Are you kidding? Talk about easy and convenient! One of the nice things about canned veggies like corn and green beans is that the vegetables are picked and packed at the peak of ripeness, so they’re nutritious … and you can eat your favorite vegetables all-year round.

Southwest Corn, Rice & Bean Casserole

Makes 4 to 6 Servings

Liz’s husband is a vegetarian who eats fish and her two boys love their beef and chicken. Liz is flexible. When she tested this dish with the family, there wasn’t a single complaint. It’s hearty and filling, and with two teen boys at the table, the casserole disappeared quickly. You could certainly add diced roasted chicken to the dish for more protein. As for the vegetables, since the seasonings are already in the can, you don’t have to bother adding your own!

  • 2 cups cooked instant or regular brown rice
  • One 15.25-ounce can Del Monte Southwest Corn with Poblano & Red Peppers, drained
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup mild or medium salsa
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 1½ cups reduced-fat shredded Cheddar cheese, divided

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil or coat a 9 x 9-inch baking pan or dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2. Place the rice, corn, beans, salsa, and eggs in a large bowl and stir to combine. Add 1 cup of the cheese and stir to combine. Transfer the mixture to the prepared pan and spread evenly with a spatula, and top with the remaining 1/2 cup cheese.

3. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to bake until the cheese melts and the casserole is bubbly, 5 to 10 minutes.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 slice):  330 calories, 11g fat (5g saturated), 730mg sodium, 42g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 18g protein, 15% vitamin A, 10% vitamin C, 50% calcium, 10% iron

Print Recipe

Southwest Corn, Rice & Bean Casserole

Disclosure: We created this recipe for Del Monte and were compensated for the recipe and social media outreach. All opinions are solely our own. For more information on the new lineup of seasoned vegetables, visit the Del Monte website.

My CSA Bounty and a Recipe for Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

I love my CSA (community supported agriculture), and I’ve been a member of the Farm Direct Coop for about eight years. Every Thursday from June through October I pick up my weekly bounty. Sometimes there are choices—pick three items from a table with six options—while other times the decision is made for you—take one pound of peaches and two pounds of apples, etc. I have a fruit and veggie share, and I also get bread from a local bakery.

CSA

One of the fun things about participating in a CSA is that you never know what you’re going to get from week to week, and for me sometimes I’m not familiar with all the items. What the heck is callaloo?

CSA veggies via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Decisions, decisions: Should I get another bunch of kale or an eggplant?!

CSA via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

One nice thing about my CSA is that there are always people who like to give advice on how to prepare things. Here, a fellow member explains that he likes to pit his peaches,  stuff with cheese and herbs, and then roast them. I wouldn’t have thought of that!

Vegetables via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

This was my haul a few weeks ago. I got two beautiful bunches of Swiss chard and posted to our Meal Makeover Moms Facebook page asking for fresh advice on what to do with them. There was no shortage of ideas, but the recipe for Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans that Kristin shared really caught my eye. I made it and it was a huge hit with my family.

Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

Makes 6 Servings

This recipe originally appeared in the January / February 2009 issue of Eating Well magazine, but I got it from our friend Kristin’s blog.  I didn’t change much, but I did leave out the water and saute the veggies instead, and I added more mozzarella cheese. Chard is in peak season from June through August (did you know there are over 50 varieties?), and it’s an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as potassium, magnesium, iron, and manganese. It’s also high in antioxidants and fiber, and it helps support bone health thanks to the vitamin K.

  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • One 16-ounce package shelf-stable gnocchi, (see Tip)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 6 cups chopped chard leaves, (about 1 small bunch) or spinach
  • One 15-ounce can diced tomatoes with Italian seasonings
  • One 15-ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese (optional)
  • 1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

1. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add gnocchi and cook, stirring often, until plumped and starting to brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.

2. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and onion to the pan and cook, stirring, over medium heat, for 2 minutes. Stir in garlic and water. Cover and cook until the onion is soft, 4 to 6 minutes. Add chard (or spinach) and cook, stirring, until starting to wilt, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, beans and pepper and bring to a simmer.

3. If serving immediately, stir in the gnocchi and sprinkle with mozzarella and Parmesan. (Tip: If making ahead, keep the gnocchi separate so it doesn’t get soggy.) Cover and cook until the cheese is melted and the sauce is bubbling, about 3 minutes.  Sprinkle with red pepper flakes if desired.

Tip: Look for shelf-stable gnocchi near other pasta in the Italian section of most supermarkets.

Nutrition Information per Serving: 325 Calories, 7g Fat (2g saturated), 616 mg sodium, 55g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 14 g Protein

Print Recipe

Skillet Gnocchi with Chard & White Beans

The gnocchi that I used in the recipe came from the new Whole Foods that just opened up in my town of Melrose, MA (yippee!). I used plenty of olive oil to saute the gnocchi which gave it a nice crispy texture!

Sriracha Chard Pickles via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

In the spirit of full disclosure, I also made Sriracha Fridge Pickles with my Swiss chard stems, as recommended on Facebook by Carol Ann. They were not a big hit around here, because the stems were pretty fibrous and the flavor was a bit too spicy. I may use the onions in sandwiches but probably won’t make the recipe again. It was fun to try though! :)

A Back-to-School Lunch Box Recipe for Sweetie Pie Quesadilla and a Giveaway for the Best Lunch Box Ever (and a Dacor Distinctive Range!!) {Giveaway CLOSED}

It’s hard to believe that kids across the country are heading back to school already. While ours still have a ways to go before the school bell rings, we realize that the daily routine of stuffing backpacks and lunch boxes is now a reality for many of you. What can we say other than, “boo hoo.”

Best Lunch Box Ever

To kick off the school year on a healthy note, we’re giving away a copy of the adorable new cookbook, Best Lunch Box Ever by Katie Sullivan Morford (Chronicle Books, 2013). Katie is a dietitian, food writer, and mom of three, and she hosts the award-winning blog, Mom’s Kitchen Handbook. As part of the giveaway, Katie is also tossing in a set of colorful stacking stainless steel lunch containers from Kids Konserve (combined retail value is $47.00).

TO ENTER: Leave a comment here on our blog and tell us about your kid’s hands-down favorite, must-have lunch box favorites. Perhaps it’s a roll up or a wrap  or a special my-mom-is-the-best-mom-ever snack or dessert. We’d love to hear about it so post away!

We will enter you into the giveaway additional times if you …

Tweet about the giveaway with a link back to this post.
> Share the giveaway news with your Facebook fans and friends with a link back to the post.
> Follow us on Pinterest, Twitter (@MealMakeovrMoms), or on Facebook.

Please be sure to leave us a new comment every time you do something extra, and GOOD LUCK. The giveaway ends on August 23rd at noon, and as always we’ll use Random.org to pick our winner. Good luck!

READ ON FOR THE QUESADILLA RECIPE AND A CHANCE TO WIN ONE MORE PRIZE: a Dacor Distinctive Gas or Electric 30″ range.

The Best Lunch Box Ever includes recipes for mains — sandwiches, salads, pinwheels, wraps — sides, goodies, and after school eats, and it includes a bunch of super helpful tips on everything from lunch-box supplies to best ways to keep foods cool and safe. The book is filled with playful photos and whimsical packing ideas. We made a few recipes from the book including this one for Sweetie Pie Quesadilla starring shredded sweet potato.

lunch box quesadillas

Sweetie Pie Quesadilla

Makes 2 Servings

Recipe courtesy of Best Lunch Box Ever. You can change up the cheese by using low-fat Cheddar or mozzarella, and according to Katie, leftover cooked veggies like broccoli, zucchini, or bell pepeprs can be chopped up and substituted for the sweet potato.

  • 3/4 cup coarsely grated Monterey Jack cheese
  • Two 8-inch whole-wheat flour tortillas
  • 1/2 cup grated peeled raw sweet potato
  • 1/4 cup cooked black beans, drained
  • 2 tablespoons mild green taco sauce (we used salsa)
  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil

1. Sprinkle half of the cheese evenly over one tortilla. Scatter the sweet potato over the cheese, followed by the beans. Spoon the taco sauce over the beans and top with the remaining cheese and the remaining tortilla.

2. In a medium skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Put the quesadilla in the pan and cook until golden brown and crispy, 2 to 3 minutes. With a spatula, flip the quesadilla and cook until the second side is golden brown and crispy, about 2 minutes.

3. Transfer the quesadilla to a cutting board and let cool for a few minutes.

4. Cut into quarters. Wrap or pack into two containers.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 quesadilla): 380 calories, 19g fat (8g saturated), 560mg sodium, 37g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 16g protein, 130% vitamin A, 30% calcium, 10% iron

Print Recipe

Katie is hosting this giveaway, and a lot of other food and nutrition bloggers are participating. As a thank you to everyone who enters, Katie is offering one giant grand prize: a Dacor Distinctive Gas or Electric 30″ range. Retail value: $3,199 to 3,399 (depending on gas or electric).

dacor

Because there will be one winner chosen from among multiple participating blogs, Katie has asked us to use this Rafflecopter to run the grand prize contest. You can enter via the Rafflecopter below by clicking “Enter to Win.” For additional entries, you can “Like” Dacor on Facebook or follow them on Twitter. This giveaway also ends on August 23rd, and we sure hope one of our readers wins!  PS: Katie will be on our Cooking with the Moms radio podcast on August 14th so stay tuned …

a Rafflecopter giveaway

A Summer-Inspired Recipe for Corn & Spinach Fritters

Corn is once again in season here in New England. As with most of our local produce, it’s a short season … but we’ll take it no matter what! There’s nothing better than freshly shucked corn cooked the old-fashioned way in a pot of boiling and then brushed with melted butter and a sprinkling of kosher salt and freshly ground pepper. Hmmmm. We’re getting hungry.

corn and spinach fritters

We can’t take all the credit for this recipe. These I-can’t-eat-just-one fritters were inspired by a recipe created by Aggie from Aggie’s Kitchen. We adapted it a bit by adding fresh corn kernels, green onions, lemon zest, and herbs.

Corn & spinach fritters

We prefer silver-dollar size fritters, but you can make them bigger (more like a pancake) if you prefer.

Corn & Spinach Fritters

Makes 6 Servings (24 fritters)

This recipe is pretty versatile. You can change up the veggies or use a variety of different herbs. We call for basil, but you could certainly mix in Asian basil, fresh thyme, or tarragon instead. Serve the fritters as a kid-friendly snack, with a salad, as a side dish … you name it. Just an FYI, if you use whole milk ricotta, each serving will have 23 grams total fat and 10 grams saturated fat.

  • 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced (white and light green parts only)
  • 1 ear cooked corn, kernels shucked (about 1/2 cup)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 2/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh basil or any other favorite herb
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 cups baby spinach, thinly sliced
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper

1. Heat 1 teaspoon of the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the green onions and corn kernels and cook, stirring frequently until softened and golden, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and cool slightly.

2. Add the eggs, ricotta cheese, panko, Parmesan cheese, basil, and lemon zest and stir to combine. Stir in the sliced spinach until combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (As Aggie suggests, cook up a tiny fritter, taste it, and then adjust seasoning.)

3. Heat 2 teaspoons of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Scoop a heaping tablespoon of the mixture and place in the skillet. Press down gently with the back of a spatula. Repeat until the skillet is filled (you should be able to fit 6 – 8 in the pan). Cook about 4 minutes until the bottoms are golden. Flip, flatten again with the back of a spatula, and cook another 4 minutes until golden and cooked through. Repeat with the remaining oil and ricotta mixture.

Nutrition Information per Serving (4 fritters):  320 calories, 19g fat (7g saturated), 300mg sodium, 18g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 18g protein, 20% vitamin A, 35% calcium

Print Recipe

corn & spinach fritters

Crispy on the outside, soft on the inside. Bring ‘em on …

A Vegetarian Recipe for Baked Falafel Sandwiches with Yogurt-Tahini Sauce

We’ve been on a vegetarian cooking jag lately, and this recipe for homemade falafel from The Food Lover’s Healthy Habits Cookbook recently caught our eye. The book, written by the editors of Cooking Light magazine and our friend and fellow dietitian, Janet Helm from the blog, Nutrition Unplugged, is filled with tips and recipes to help readers add new mealtime habits to their lives. Flavorful Baked Falafel Sandwiches with Yogurt-Tahini Sauce comes straight from the Go Meatless One Day a Week chapter, and based on the reaction in our kitchens, it’s a recipe even meat lovers will appreciate.

Falafel sandwich from The Food Lover's Healthy Habits Cookbook

Open a can of chickpeas and you’re well on your way to a fabulous dinner. For the sauce, we used low-fat Greek yogurt versus the whole-milk yogurt called for in the recipe, and it worked just fine. We also used pita bread versus flatbreads.

Chickpeas

We’re huge fans of the herb, cilantro. It’s definitely one of those herbs you either love or hate, but lucky for us, we’re in the “we can’t get enough of it” camp. Herbs are incredibly nutritious, so when we cook with them, we consider them a vegetable!

Falafel ingredients

Falafel Sandwiches with Yogurt-Tahini Sauce

Makes 6 Servings

You’ll find this recipe in The Food Lover’s Healthy Habits Cookbook by Cooking Light and Janet Helm, MS, RD.

Sauce:

  • 1 cup plain whole-milk Greek yogurt
  • 1 tablespoon tahini (sesame-seed paste)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Falafel:

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup uncooked bulgur
  • 3 cups cooked chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/2 cup chopped green onions
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • Cooking spray

Remaining ingredients:

  • 6 (2.8-ounce) Mediterranean Style white flatbreads
  • 12 (1/4-inch-thick) slices tomato
  • Chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

1. To prepare sauce, combine the first 3 ingredients, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

2. To prepare falafel, bring 3/4 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan; add bulgur to pan. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 30 minutes or until tender. Drain and set aside.

3. Preheat oven to 425°. Combine chickpeas and the next 9 ingredients (through garlic) in a food processor; pulse 10 times or until well blended and smooth (mixture will be wet). Spoon chickpea mixture into a large bowl; stir in bulgur.

4. Divide mixture into 12 equal portions (about 1/4 cup each); shape each portion into a 1/4-inch-thick patty. Place patties on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray. Bake at 425° for 10 minutes on each side or until browned. Spread about 2 1/2 tablespoons sauce onto each flatbread or pita. Top each with 2 falafel patties, 2 tomato slices, and chopped cilantro, if desired.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 stuffed flatbread):  340 calories, 8g fat (3.5g saturated), 535mg sodium, 65g carbohydrate, 15g fiber, 18g protein

Print Recipe

We hope to have Janet join us on a future Cooking with the Moms radio podcast to tell us more about the book, so stay tuned for that!

4 Tips for Adding Better Nutrition to Summer Cookouts … Plus, a Recipe for Rainbow Bean & Edamame Salad

On July 4th alone, Americans will consume a whopping 150 million hot dogs! But a new survey commissioned by Applegate shows that most consumers don’t think the dogs they buy are high quality. The good news is that not all hot dogs are created equal. Today, I joined The Morning Show at New England Cable News (NECN) to dish about better-for-you dogs and to offer tips for giving  summertime cookouts a healthy makeover. You can watch the segment by visiting the NECN website … or read on for my slimming, nutrient-boosting suggestions!

Applegate hot dogs and burgers. Organic and natural

There’s no reason to whine about wieners. The key to choosing the best brands is to look for organic and natural alternatives like Applegate. I’ve been working with them this summer to spread the news that eating hot dog and good health can go hand in hand. Their beef franks (my favorite) have just four ingredients (and yes, you can pronounce them): beef, water, sea salt, and spices. They are hormone and antibiotic free and don’t contain any fillers or nitrites.

fruit and veggie kebabs

Why stop at burgers and dogs? You can add great nutrition to any cookout by grilling up veggie or fruit kebabs. My favorite pop-on-the-grill vegetables are mushrooms, zucchini, and bell peppers. Brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and then grill for 10 to 12 minutes. Pineapple works wonders on the grill too as do plums, peaches, and nectarines.

Cookout condiments

Ketchup, mustard, and relish may be the most popular hot dog condiments, but there are plenty of other toppers to choose from. I love to saute sliced bell peppers and onions until they are caramelized, or you can adorn your dogs with diced avocado, salsa, and cilantro for a Tex-Mex topping.

A makeover of three-bean salad

Swap out the usual sides with interesting vegetable salads. And don’t rely solely on mayonnaise for your potato and pasta salads. You can switch over to low-fat mayo or use a combo of mayo and low-fat plain Greek yogurt. The yogurt provides protein and calcium.

Rainbow Bean & Edamame Salad

Makes 5 Servings

Three bean salad was popular when I was a kid, and it’s certainly always been a nutritious side dish given all the beans! But as I often do when I have some free time on my hands, I decided to give this classic recipe an updated flavor makeover. To that end, I mixed up a new recipe using chickpeas (also known as garbanzo beans), edamame, raisins, carrot, bell pepper, and a bunch of interesting seasonings. Pack along for a picnic or cookout or stuff into a summer camp lunchbox for the kiddos.

  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup shelled, cooked edamame
  • 1/4 cup golden raisins
  • 1 small carrot, finely diced about 1/3 cup
  • Half of a small red bell pepper, cut into 1/4 inch dice (about 1/3 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Pinch garlic powder
  • Kosher salt
  • Black pepper

1. Place the chickpeas, edamame, raisins, carrot, bell pepper, lemon juice, olive oil, Italian seasoning, cumin, and garlic powder in a bowl and mix until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1/2 cup): 200 calories, 6g fat (0.5g saturated), 190mg sodium, 30g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 8g protein, 40% vitamin A, 25% vitamin C

Print Recipe

Fireworks in Lexington, MA 2013

Happy July 4th everyone!

Disclosure: I created this recipe for Applegate and was compensated for the recipe and social media/TV outreach. All opinions are solely my own.

A Recipe for California Avocado Macaroni Summer Salad … Plus Other Cookout Favorites {Podcast #222} … And a Giveaway for Fresh CA Avocados {Giveaway Closed}

Summer pasta salads are often loaded with mayonnaise, adding gobs of fat but not a whole lot of nutrition. We give classic macaroni salad a makeover by swapping out the mayo for a homemade dressing made with California Avocados, low-fat Greek yogurt, fresh herbs, olive oil, lemon juice, and garlic, and we feature it on this week’s Cooking with the Moms podcast. Tune in for our oh-so-healthy mac salad makeover and a second summer recipe for Avocado Beef and Black Bean Burgers. Read on for the recipes and news on our latest giveaway for fresh California avocados and assorted avocado kitchen essentials.

Macaroni salad made with a dressing of California Avocados and low-fat Greek yogurt

From the July 4th holiday right through Labor Day, take advantage of gorgeous, seasonal produce from farmers’ markets or your own backyard gardens. And don’t forget about local avocados from California, they’re in season right now through September.

California Avocado Macaroni Summer Salad

Makes 8 Servings

When we think of summer holidays, classic macaroni salad comes to mind. We lighten it up with our own avocado-inspired dressing, and then we toss in diced avocado, tomato, and corn kernels. And, of course, we use whole grain pasta! The addition of the avocados adds heart-healthy monounsaturated fat as well as nearly 20 vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients.

  • 3 cups dried whole wheat blend macaroni
  • 3 ripe Fresh California Avocados, halved, peeled and seeded
  • 1/2 cup low-fat plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil, packed
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint, packed
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice, divided
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup fresh corn kernels (or frozen and thawed)
  • Basil and mint, chopped (garnish)

1. Cook the pasta according to package directions.

2. While the pasta is cooking, place an avocado half in the bowl of a food processor or blender. Add the yogurt, basil, mint, olive oil, two tablespoons of the lemon juice, lemon zest, garlic, salt and pepper and process until smooth and creamy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed.

3. Drain the pasta and place in a large bowl. Cool completely. Stir the dressing into the pasta until well combined. Meanwhile, cut the remaining avocados into 3/4-inch dice. Gently stir into the pasta with the tomatoes, corn and the remaining lemon juice.

4. Season with salt and pepper to taste, garnish with additional chopped herbs, and serve.

Nutrition Information Per Serving: Calories 370; Total Fat 19 g (Sat 3 g, Trans 0 g, Poly 2 g, Mono 13 g); Cholesterol 0 mg; Sodium 140 mg; Potassium 670 mg; Total Carbohydrates 44 g; Dietary Fiber 10 g; Total Sugars 4 g; Protein 10 g; Vitamin A 2044 IU; Vitamin C 24 mg; Calcium 62 mg; Iron 2 mg; Vitamin D 0 IU; Folate 110 mcg; Omega 3 Fatty Acid 0.1 g

*Large avocados are recommended for this recipe. A large avocado averages about 8 ounces. If using smaller or larger size avocados adjust the quantity accordingly.

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Taping an avocado summer recipe segment for The Daily Buzz

We cooked up this recipe as well as our avocado beef burgers for The Daily Buzz syndicated morning show. Here’s a behind the scenes photo of The Meal Makeover Moms in action with the crew from Video Link.

CA Avocado giveaway

Giveaway News: If you love avocados as much as we do, you’ll definitely want to enter this month’s giveaway for an avocado gift basket. One lucky winner will receive six fresh California avocados, a bamboo cutting board, an avocado apron and tee shirt, a reusable shopping tote, and more. (Open to U.S. residents only.) To enter, tell us your favorite way to eat avocados? Guacamole? A sandwich topping? In an Avocado Key Lime Pie? Share away!

We will enter you into the giveaway additional times if you …

Tweet about the giveaway with a link back to this post.
> Share the giveaway news with your Facebook fans and friends with a link back to the post.
> Follow us on Pinterest.
> Follow The Meal Makeover Moms on Twitter (@MealMakeovrMoms)

Please be sure to leave us a new comment every time you do something extra, and GOOD LUCK. The giveaway ends on July 16th at noon, and as always we’ll use Random.org to pick our winner. Good luck!

Disclosure: We created this recipe for the California Avocado Commission and were compensated for the recipe and social media outreach. All opinions are solely our own. For more avocado recipes, you can visit CaliforniaAvocado.com. For more July 4th avocado recipes, click here

My Trip to the Culinary Institute of America and a Gluten-Free Recipe for Sweet Potato & Peanut Quinoa Cakes

Last month, I spent a weekend at the gorgeous Culinary Institute of America at Greystone in Napa Valley, CA. My trip to the CIA was part of Plant-Powered Eating: The Role of Peanuts in Healthy Diets, a nutrition program sponsored by The Peanut Institute. We sat in on lectures exploring the benefits of adding peanuts to the diet and we cooked a variety of recipes—everything from a deep fried turkey to peanut caramel popcorn—alongside seasoned CIA chefs. My favorite recipe that day was this one for Peanut, Farro, and Mushroom Burgers with Swiss Cheese and Caramelized Onions.

peanut farro vegetarian cakes

This recipe took quite some time to assemble, and there were more than a few cooks in the kitchen preparing it. So in true Meal Makeover Mom fashion, I set out to recreate the recipe to (a) make it more streamlined, (b) use fewer ingredients, (c) keep it kid friendly, and (d) make it gluten free (something our readers love).

Gluten free quinoa cakes made with sweet potato, chopped peanuts, Parmesan cheese, mushrooms, garlic, thyme, and rosemary

I used Tim and the boys as my guinea pigs, and I’m happy to report that there were no leftovers after dinner.

Culinary Institute of America at Greystone. Look at all that rosemary.

Fresh herbs including rosemary grow everywhere around the grounds of the CIA, and we used some for the recipe.

Sweet Potato & Peanut Quinoa Cakes

Makes 4 Servings

Peanuts are the most nutrient dense nut. They contain a long list of nutrients including folate, niacin, vitamin E, iron, copper, and magnesium. I love them for their versatility, and I’m especially fond of them in this recipe. The sweetness of the sweet potato is the perfect balance for the flavor of the peanuts, and the quinoa makes these pint-size patties perfect for people on gluten-free diets. To serve the patties, you can do a number of things. Consider melting a slice of cheese on top and serving on slider buns (unless you’re gluten free), or serve on top of a crisp, fresh summer salad. You decide!

  • One 8-ounce sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil or expeller pressed canola oil, divided
  • 8 ounces mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3/4 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 cup roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
  • 1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1. Steam the sweet potato until fork tender, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and mash with a fork or potato masher until smooth. Set aside.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add the mushrooms, rosemary, and thyme and cook, stirring frequently, until tender and golden, about 8 minutes. Stir in the garlic and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until golden, 1 to 2 more minutes. Season with kosher salt and pepper.

3. Add the mushrooms, quinoa, peanuts, and Parmesan cheese to the mashed sweet potato and stir until well combined.

4. Form the mixture into 8 patties. Heat the remaining oil in the nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Carefully arrange the patties in the skillet and cook until the bottoms are golden, about 4 minutes. Flip carefully and cook until the other sides are golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Cook in two separate batches if your skillet is not big enough to hold all 8 patties.

Nutrition Information per Serving (2 patties): 360 calories, 20g fat (4g saturated), 200mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 15g protein, 140% vitamin A, 15% vitamin C, 10% calcium, 15% iron

Print Recipe

Disclosure: I do not work for The Peanut Institute, but my travel expenses associated with the conference were paid for.  All opinions and recipe are my own. (Check out my other Napa CIA post featuring Peanut Butter Crepes with Strawberry Sauce.)

‘Old’ Wedding Photos of The Meal Makeover Moms … A Recipe for Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies … and the Recipe Redux May Challenge (Podcast #219)

When was the last time you attended a bridal shower or baby shower? For us, it’s been a long, long time. Janice was married in 1988 and Liz tied the knot in 1992, so graduation parties are more our speed these days! But regardless of where you’re at in your life, May is notorious for all sorts of celebrations … and all those celebrations require a lot of great food.

Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies

For this month’s Recipe Redux, we were all challenged with a healthy dish for “shower season.” The result: A new recipe for Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies. This nutritious salad has bright, fresh flavors, is filled with interesting textures, and based on the trial run it received at a cookout Liz just went to, it’s a hit with people of all ages. That’s the kind of recipe we call a “keeper.”

We chat all about this gorgeous spring salad and other celebratory recipes including our Cauliflower Farro Salad on this week’s Cooking with the Moms podcast, so be sure to tune in.

Janice and Don get married! Circa 1988

Janice and Don walking down the aisle, circa 1988. Oh my … that hair! Those shoulder pads!

Liz and Tim get married. Circa 1992

Now that you’ve stopped laughing, here’s Liz and Tim on their wedding day in 1992. OK. Now you can start laughing again :)

Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies

Lemony Couscous photo edited with Instagram.

Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies

Makes 16 Servings

The next time you’re invited to a bridal or baby shower or another special celebration consider our recipe.  It’s versatile, so if you prefer bell peppers to tomatoes, make the swap. Or if you love walnuts or almonds make the switch from pecans. Same goes for the feta. Tiny cubes of reduced-fat Cheddar would also be nice.

  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 2 cups Israeli couscous (also called pearl couscous)
  • 8 ounces green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces, blanched for 1 to 2 minutes until crisp tender
  • One 12-ounce container multicolored gourmet tomato medley or grape tomatoes, cut into halves or quarters
  • 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/2 cup golden raisins
  • 1/2 cup lightly toasted pecans pieces
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the couscous and cook until golden, about 3 minutes. Stir frequently. Add 4 cups water and bring to a boil, stirring a few times. Reduce the heat and simmer, covered, until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain any remaining liquid, transfer to a large bowl, and cool. Stir frequently to speed up cooling. (You can also place in the refrigerator until chilled.)

2. Stir in the green beans, tomatoes, feta, raisins, pecans, and basil until well combined. Stir in the remaining olive oil, the lemon zest, the lemon juice, maple syrup, salt, and pepper until well combined. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information per Serving (generous 1/2 cup): 230 calories, 9g fat, (2g saturated, 0.2g omega-3), 140mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 7g protein, 60% vitamin A, 80% vitamin C, 10% calcium, 10% iron

Print Recipe

Lemony Couscous with Lots of Veggies

We can’t wait to see what our fellow dietitian Reduxers have in store for us this month. Bring it on!!



A Vegetarian Recipe for Black Bean Sliders with a Sweet Surprise Inside

I’ve been devouring the new book, Fearless Feeding: How to Raise Healthy Eaters from High Chair to High School by dietitians Jill Castle and Maryann Jacobsen, and decided to cook up their recipe for Black Bean Sliders. My daughter, Leah, has been experimenting with being vegetarian—that’s a new decision, so the sliders looked like a great idea. I loved them. My husband, Don, loved them. Carolyn, who’s home from college, loved them. As for Leah. Well, let’s just say that when I presented them she asked “Is there pumpkin, squash, or sweet potato in these?” And when I answered, “Yes, sweet potato,” she wouldn’t take a bite. Isn’t it nice to know that even a Meal Makeover Mom can have a sometimes-picky eater?!

Black Bean Sliders via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

This recipe is so easy. Made with black beans, mashed sweet potato, shredded cheese, and cumin they come together in under 30 minutes. The sweet potato flavor is pretty mild, so I think if Leah had tried the sliders, she would have liked them. Oh well …

Black Bean Sliders

Makes 5 Servings

This recipe is adapted slightly from the Black Bean Sliders in Fearless Feeding. I served the patties on slider buns and topped them with cilantro and thin slices of red onion and tomato. Avocado slices would also be awesome. The sweet potato gives a subtle sweetness to the sliders and provides a full day’s worth of immune-boosting vitamin A. The next time I make the bean sliders (and yes, there will be a next time!), I will probably saute them in a nonstick skillet with some evoo to add a little more crispiness.

  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup plain bread crumbs
  • 1 medium sweet potato, cooked and mashed (without skin)
  • 1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat Mexican blend or Cheddar cheese

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil or coat a large baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2. Place the beans, 2 teaspoons of the olive oil, cumin, garlic powder, and chili powder in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined (do not puree). Add the egg, bread crumbs, sweet potato, and cheese and pulse until combined.

3. Form the mixture into small patties (about 3 inches in diameter) and place on the prepared baking sheet. Brush the tops with the remaining oil and bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Flip the patties after 10 minutes for even cooking.

Nutrition Information per Serving (2 sliders without the buns): 170 calories, 6g fat (2g saturated), 310mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 9g protein, 100% vitamin A, 10% vitamin C, 15% calcium, 10% iron

Print Recipe

For more Fearless Feeding recipes, check out their Mexican Lasagna and Greek Chopped Salad.

A Vegetarian Recipe for Cauliflower Farro Salad: Guest Post From Our Intern, Caroline

Hi everyone: I am Caroline Lavery, a graduate student at Boston University. This past semester, I worked with The Meal Makeover Moms as an intern. Every week I took time out of my hectic studying schedule to help The Moms with research for their radio podcast, cook up healthy, great tasting recipes, and I even set up their Google Plus page! Liz and Janice taught me so much including one important point I will never forget in my future career as a registered dietitian: Food is like fashion. It needs to be stylish, practical, and make you feel great or you it won’t make it to the register.

Cauliflower Farro Salad via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Cauliflower is one of my favorite veggies and apparently, I’m not the only one who loves it. It’s actually considered pretty trendy these days making its way into stir fries, mashes, and gluten free crusts. This cancer-fighting cruciferous vegetable is low in calories—just 25 per cup—and it’s packed with antioxidants and nutrients such as vitamin C and potassium.

Cauliflower Farro Salad via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

The Moms challenged me to come up with a new recipe for Meal Makeover Moms’ Kitchen. After a quick brainstorm, I decided to create a new family-friendly dish using cauliflower. Here I am helping Janice style the food and take a photo!

Cauliflower Farro Salad via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

 Cauliflower is the star of my crunchy, super flavorful salad with some scrumptious supporting ingredients including pecans, dried cranberries, farro (a nutritious ancient whole grain), and an orange to name a few. Serve my citrus-y side dish at your next cookout or party or make it a main meal with a bed of salad greens as the base.

Cauliflower Farro Salad

Makes 4 Servings

If you’re cooking for a crowd, you can easily double this recipe. It’s also versatile; you can swap out the pecans for walnuts, the dried cranberries for chopped dried apricots, and the farro with quinoa.

  • 1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into 1-inch bite-size pieces
  • 1 medium carrot, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 1/2 cup farro, cooked according to package directions (I used the 10-minute farro from Trader Joe’s), cooled
  • 1/3 cup lightly toasted pecan pieces
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 English cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 tablespoons roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1. Fill a medium saucepan about 2/3 full with water and bring to a rapid boil. While the water is heating, prepare a large mixing bowl with ice water and set aside. Place the cauliflower and carrots into the boiling water and cook until the desired texture is achieved (I like crisp but slightly tender), 1 to 2 minutes. Immediately drain the cauliflower in a colander and transfer to the ice water bath. (You can also drain and run under cold water.) Drain the cauliflower when cool and place in a large bowl.

2. Add the farro, pecans, dried cranberries, cucumber, and parsley and stir to combine.

3. Place the olive oil, orange juice, orange zest, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper in a bowl and whisk until well combined. Stir into the cauliflower mixture until all the vegetables are coated with the dressing. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 cup):  260 calories, 14g fat (1.5g saturated), 105mg sodium, 32g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 5g protein, 60% vitamin A, 70% vitamin C

Print Recipe

Cauliflower Farro Salad via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #vegetarian

I’m not a vegan, but if I was this would be the perfect recipe; I might even toss in a cup of chickpeas for extra protein.

A Cinco de Mayo Recipe for Vegetarian Mexican Lasagna … And a Sneak Peek of the New Book, Fearless Feeding

When I asked a few friends the significance of Cinco de Mayo, their universal answer was Mexico’s Independence Day, which is like our Fourth of July. Well, they were all incorrect (and I actually thought my friends were relatively smart)! Mexico’s Independence Day is celebrated on September 16th. Cinco de Mayo actually commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French troops at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. It is not a national holiday and is celebrated mostly in the state of Puebla, Mexico where it is called El Dia de la Batalla de Puebla (The Day of the Battle of Puebla). In the U.S., it has evolved into a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride, and for some, an excuse to eat chips and guacamole and drink margaritas!

Mexican Lasagna

I was flipping through a new book Liz and I received called Fearless Feeding: How to Raise Healthy Eaters from High Chair to High School (Jossey-Bass, 2013) by dietitian colleagues, Jill Castle and Maryann Jacobsen, and saw a recipe for Mexican Lasagna that I thought would be perfect for Cinco de Mayo. So I invited my parents to join us for dinner and gave it a try.

CInco de Mayo

Mom and Dad were good sports and tried one of Don’s margaritas and Leah helped make the lasagna by slicing the green onions and chopping the mushrooms. Her parakeet ‘Jazzy’ kept a watchful eye! One of the tips in Fearless Feeding is to get teens into the kitchen cooking so they can learn and master some basic culinary skills … and that’s exactly what my daughter, Leah did tonight :)

MexicanLasagna

I made a couple of modifications to the recipe since Leah doesn’t like corn and is currently experimenting with a vegetarian diet; I substituted sauteed mushrooms for the corn and meat-free grounds for the ground chicken.

Ingredients for Mexican Lasagna

Mexican Lasagna 

Makes 10 servings

This is the vegetarian version of Mexican Lasagna from Fearless Feeding, but you could certainly make it with ground chicken or turkey and use corn in place of or in addition to the mushrooms. I served the lasagna topped with chopped avocado that I tossed with the juice of a lime, a bit of extra virgin olive oil, and a handful of chopped cilantro. For good measure, I added a spoonful of light sour cream.

  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 red onion, chopped fine
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • One 8-ounce package sliced mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • One 12-ounce package veggie protein crumbles
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup salsa
  • Six 8-inch flour tortillas
  • 2 cups shredded reduced fat Mexican cheese
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced

1. Preheat the oven to 350° F.

2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, cumin, and chili powder and cook, stirring frequently about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until the mushrooms are softened, about another 5 minutes. Stir in the veggie crumbles, black beans, and salsa and heat through.

3. Coat the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch casserole pan with nonstick cooking spray. Cut the tortillas in half and layer 6 halves on the bottom of the pan, covering completely. Add half of the filling on top of the tortillas. Top with half of the shredded cheese (1 cup). Layer the remaining 6 tortilla halves. Top with the remaining filling. Cover with 1 cup shredded cheese and sprinkle the sliced green onions on top. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the lasagna is heated through and the cheese is melted.

Nutrition Information per Serving: 240 calories, 7g fat (3g saturated), 710mg sodium, 29g carbohydrate, 5g fiber, 19g protein, 25% calcium, 15% iron

Print Recipe

Stay tuned for an interview with Jill Castle, co-author of Fearless Feeding, on this week’s Cooking with the Moms podcast.

Whole Grain Sampling Day, a Recipe for Herby-licious Freekeh Salad, and a Giveaway for a Basket of Whole Grain Food Products {Giveaway Closed}

I am a big fan of (and do some consulting work for) Oldways, a nonprofit food and nutrition education organization in Boston, so when they asked me if I wanted to be a Whole Grain Ambassador to help them celebrate Whole Grain Sampling Day, I jumped at the chance. After all, part of what Liz and I do is encourage folks to eat more whole grains for better healthy along with vegetables, fruits, lean protein, seafood, healthy oils, and beans and nuts … of course.

Whole Grain Sampling Day 2012 via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Last year, to celebrate Whole Grain Sampling Day, Liz and I joined Oldways as they drove around Boston on a Duck Boat handing out whole grain samples!

Whole Grain Sampling Day!

This year, being a Whole Grain Ambassador meant I got  a box of whole grain products to sample and another box to give away to a blog reader. I have especially enjoyed the Bob’s Red Mill muesli and the Way Better Snacks Sweet Potato Chips. Read on if you’d like to have an assortment of whole grains delivered to your door.

When Liz and I opened the box, the Freekehlicious freekeh sample caught our attention. We have talked about creating a recipe using freekeh (pronounced “free-ka”) for months now, partly due to the Nutrition Babes recent obsession with this trendy ancient grain. 

Freekehlicious Freekeh via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen

Freekeh is wheat that is harvested while still young and green, and then parched, roasted, and dried. It’s higher in both fiber and protein than most other grains.

We were quite pleased with our first foray into the world of freekeh. The grain looks a little bit like barley and has a slightly nutty flavor and chewy texture.

For more information about the health benefits of whole grains and tips on how to cook them, visit the Whole Grains Council website.

Herby-licious Freekeh Salad

Makes 6 Servings

This Mediterranean-inspired salad is perfect for a side dish or a light lunch. For a vegetarian dish it boasts an impressive 11 grams of protein per serving.

  • One 9-ounce package Freekehlicious freekeh (1½ cups)
  • 1 medium cucumber (8 ounces) peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 2 plum tomatoes, halved, seeded, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/3 cup kalamata olives, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Cook freekeh according to package directions. Place in a large bowl and cool completely in the refrigerator.

2. Add the cucumber, tomato, feta cheese, olives, pine nuts, dill, mint, olive oil, lemon juice, and lemon zest and toss gently to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Nutrition Information per Serving (about 1 cup): 320 calories, 17g fat (3.5g saturated) 380mg sodium, 34g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 11g protein, 10% vitamin C, 10% calcium, 10% iron

Print Recipe

GIVEAWAY NEWS: We are giving away a box of assorted whole grains so you can experiment with their great taste and variety every day.

TO ENTER: Leave a comment here or on Facebook and tell us how you incorporate whole grains into your family’s diet.

We will enter you into the giveaway additional times if you …

> Tweet about the giveaway with a link back to this post.
> Share the giveaway news with your Facebook fans and friends with a link back to the post.
> Follow us on Pinterest.
> Follow The Meal Makeover Moms on Twitter (@MealMakeovrMoms)

Please be sure to leave us a new comment every time you do something extra, and GOOD LUCK. The giveaway ends on April 10th at noon, and as always we’ll use Random.org to pick our winner.

Disclosure: I received a selection of whole grain products to sample but was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own.

A Month of Meal Makeovers in March on Pinterest … and a Celebration of National Nutrition Month … and a Recipe for Lightened Spinach-Artichoke Dip (Podcast #215)

Every March, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) hosts National Nutrition Month. This year, we decided to tip our hats to the event by creating a special board on Pinterest dedicated to A Month of Meal Makeovers in March. Featured on the board are some of our toughest makeovers ever for Whoopie Pies, Chicken Cordon Bleu, and Pop Tarts, but we also showcased makeover recipes from some of our fellow registered dietitians who also spend their days dreaming up delicious and nutritious recipes for families.

Lightened Spinach-Artichoke Dip via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #healthy #appetizer #spinach

On this week’s Cooking with the Moms radio podcast, we talk about our Nutrition Month Pin board and share a recipe for Lightened Spinach-Artichoke Dip from Regan Miller Jones, RD from The Professional Palate. Each of us made Regan’s recipe for our family and friends and trust us when we say that it’s hard to stop eating this dip! Head on over to Regan’s blog for the recipe; it’s well worth the cyber trip.

ToasterPastries2

We cooked up these Strawberry-Filled Toaster Pastries — a makeover of Pop Tarts — for our friends at Driscoll’s Berries. It was by far our most challenging makeover to date. Our Grab-and-Go Granola bars, which you’ll find in our cookbook, No Whine with Dinner, were definitely our second toughest makeover!

What follows are links to the makeover recipes we shared on our Pinterest Month of Meal Makeovers in March board:

Mediterranean Quinoa Rolls with Spinach and Mushroom by Andrea Stewart, RD

White Cheddar Jalapeño Pimento Cheese by Meme Inge, MS, RD from Living Well Kitchen

Skinny French Onion Soup by Carlene Thomas, RD from Healthfully Ever After

Rosemary Cauliflower “Steak” Parmesan by Jackie Newgent, RD

Barramundi with Lemon Sauce by Barbara Boyce, RD from Nutrition Budgeteer

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies by Anne Mauney, RD from fANNEtastic food

Better Than Chewy Bars by Alex Caspero MA, RD from Delicious Knowledge

Lightened Spinach-Artichoke Dip by Regan Jones, RD from The Professional Palate

Easy Breezy Buffalo Chicken Cheesesteaks by Mandy Rother and Beth Stark, RD from the Dietitian Duo

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Apple Cabbage Slaw by Katie Morford, MS, RD from Mom’s Kitchen Handbook

Cornmeal Crusted Fish Sticks by Serena Ball, MS, RD from Teaspoon of Spice

Quinoa & Kale Crustless Quiche by Danielle Omar, MS, RD from Food Confidence

Not Your Momma’s Tuna Salad Sandwich by Ashley Galloway MS, RD from The Fresh Beet

Italian Meatballs by Kathy Siegel, RD and Lauren Harris-Pincus, MS, RD from Nutrition Babes

Baked Oatmeal Squares with Dried Cherries by Deanna Segrave-Daly, RD from Teaspoon of Spice

Vegan Birthday Cake by Janel Ovrut Funk, MS, RD from Eat Well with Janel

Dark Chocolate Walnut Oatmeal Cookies by Melanie Zook, MS, RD from Fresh Start Nutrition

Tofu Veggie Burgers by Bonnie Giller, MS, RD from BRG Health Solutions

Zesty Slow Cooker Sloppy Joes by Rebecca Scritchfield MA, RD from Rebecca Thinks

Mom’s Best Ever Banana Bread by Jen Haugen, RD from Down to Earth Dietitian

Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Hearts by Elizabeth Jarrard, RD from Don’t White Sugar Coat It

We made two tweaks to Regan’s recipe: We added some lemon zest and we gave the artichokes a few whirrs in the food processor versus adding them quartered.

Just in Time for Passover, A Recipe for Mushroom Matzo Kugel

The second Passover seder is tonight, though I must admit that I celebrated the holiday early this year. Over the weekend, we visited my family in Connecticut where we sat down to my mom’s best-in-the-world matzo ball soup and my niece’s hardest-in-the-world-to-find afikomen. I made two vegetable side dishes for the meal: Roasted Fennel and Carrots with Pecorino from the Food Network’s Giada De Laurentis and a Sweet Potato and Apple Kugel from Martha Rose Shulman of the New York Times.  Now that I’m back home, I thought it would be fun to treat my immediate family to a new recipe tonight for Mushroom Matzo Kugel.

matzo3

Fresh herbs can turn a simple side dish into something sensational!

Use regular or whole wheat matzo. If you can’t find cremini at your local market, use portobello or button mushrooms.

Mushroom Matzo Kugel
Makes 12 Servings

Kugels are often sweet, but once in a while, I like to cook up something more savory for Passover. This kugel is made with matzo — use whole wheat if you can find it at the market — and lots of chopped up vegetables. The herbs add a flavor punch and look lovely as a garnish.

  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 2 medium carrots, shredded on the large holes of a box grater (about 1 cup)
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 10 matzos, broken into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 cups all-natural vegetable broth
  • 4 large eggs, beaten

1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly oil or coat a 9 x 13-inch baking pan or dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large Dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until tender, about 7 minutes. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, carrots, mushrooms, garlic, salt, and pepper and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until the  mushrooms release their liquid and the vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Add the parsley and thyme.

3. While the vegetables are cooking, place the matzos in a large bowl. Add the broth and stir to combine. Stir every minute or 2 until the liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes.

4. Add the matzo mixture to the cooked vegetables and stir to combine. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Stir in the eggs. Transfer the matzo mixture to the prepared baking dish and bake, uncovered, until set, about 45 minutes. Cover with aluminum foil after 30 minutes if the top of the kugel begins to brown too much. Garnish with additional parsley and thyme.

Nutrition Information per Serving: 180 calories, 5g fat (1g saturated), 220mg sodium, 25g carbohydrate, 2g fiber, 6g protein, 40% vitamin A

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My sister, Amy, hosted Passover this year. We had my mom’s matzo ball soup, and Josh, who is turning 18 in less than a month, ate us out of house and home. (See plate piled high with kugel, mashed potatoes, brisket, green beans, and salmon!)

Josh, Tim, and Uncle John on the left / John, Simon, and Cousin Andrea on the right. (Hey, I just noticed the cell phones on the table. Those teens better not have been texting…)

Wishing everyone who celebrates a happy and healthy Passover.

 

A Recipe for Black Bean Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce and a Celebration of Cilantro for The Recipe Redux

When we heard about this month’s Recipe Redux “Green with Herb Envy” cooking challenge, we had one of those LOL moments. The image of green things popping from the earth, backyard gardens, and thumbing through seed catalogs seems light-years away! The Boston suburbs are still blanketed in snow, so instead of seeing green, everything outside right now is bright white. Those poor little crocuses don’t even seem to have a chance. Yes, March came in like a lion … and it’s clearly going out like one.

We love participating in the monthly Recipe Redux blogger roundup, so we decided not to let a little 10-inch snowstorm stop us. We chose gorgeous, aromatic cilantro as our featured herb, and although we may not have used it in a nontraditional way, rather than the usual garnishing afterthought, we added a giant handful right to the bean enchilada filling.

Black Bean Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #pumpkin #beans

Herbs like cilantro really wow us. They bring big, bright flavors to recipes, help home cooks cut back on the need for lots of salt, they’re pretty to look at, and they’re packed with antioxidants. When we think of herbs—parsley, mint, cilantro, basil, rosemary, thyme—we think “vegetable.”

Black Bean Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce via MealMakeoverMoms.com/kitchen #pumpkin #beans

Cilantro is one of those love-it-or-hate-it foods (kind of like goat cheese, which, we’re happy to say, we also love). We chose it for the Recipe Redux because we find ourselves turning to it all year long.

Boosting the good nutrition in everything we make is always a priority, and it was super easy with this recipe. In addition to the half cup chopped cilantro in the filling, we also added nutrient-rich black beans, baby spinach, corn, and low-fat cheese. For the tortillas, we turned to 100% whole wheat, and we enhanced the enchilada sauce with half a cup of canned pureed pumpkin.

Black Bean Enchiladas with Pumpkin Sauce

Makes 8 Servings

The idea for incorporating pumpkin into the enchilada sauce came from Stacey M., a mom and a fan from Eagle, CO. Stacey wrote: “Pumpkin has become a staple for us for all meals. I made enchiladas tonight. I use canned enchilada sauce and even the mild is a bit too spicy for the girls (they are 4 and 6), but I love spicy food. I puree the can of sauce with about 1/2 – 1/3 cup of canned pumpkin to cut the spice, add nutrition, and thicken it up. I don’t think any of them have figured it out! My girls are pretty good eaters and love sour cream so I serve it with the enchiladas. Add a cup of milk and I can have my slightly spicy dinner that everyone will eat!!” We suggest you garnish with additional cilantro, chopped tomatoes, sliced olives, diced or sliced avocado, and lime wedges.

  • 1 tablespoon expeller pressed canola oil
  • 6 green onions, chopped (white and light green parts only)
  • One 6-ounce bag baby spinach, roughly chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 cups shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese, divided
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • One 15-ounce can enchilada sauce (mild, medium, or hot)
  • 1/2 cup canned 100% pure pumpkin
  • Eight 8-inch whole wheat flour tortillas

1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly oil or coat a 9 x 13-inch baking pan or dish with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the green onions and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, 3 minutes. Add the spinach, cumin, and chili powder and continue to cook, stirring frequently, until wilted, 3 more minutes. Transfer the cooked veggies to a large bowl and set aside to cool, about 5 minutes. When cool, stir in 1 cup of the cheese, beans, corn, and cilantro until well combined.

3. Meanwhile, place the enchilada sauce and pumpkin in a medium-size bowl and whisk until well combined. Spread 1/2 cup of the mixture evenly on the bottom of the prepared baking pan.

4. To assemble the enchiladas, place 1/2 cup of filling down the center of each flour tortilla. Roll up tightly, tucking in the ends, and place seam side down in the dish. Cover evenly with the remainder of the sauce, sprinkle with the remaining 1 cup cheese, and bake, uncovered, until bubbly, about 20 minutes.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 enchilada): 310 calories, 11g fat, (3g saturated, 0.2g omega-3), 730mg sodium, 41g carbohydrate, 8g fiber, 16g protein, 60% vitamin A, 15 vitamin C, 25% calcium, 15% iron

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An Oscar Party Recipe for South-of-the-Border Tortilla Soup (Recipe Redux February Challenge)

Every year when the Oscars roll around, we stay up late to hear the results, but then we wonder, “Why on Earth did we stay up so late? We haven’t seen any of the movies!” This year is no exception … with the exception of Lincoln. I prefer watching my movies from the comfort of my own home, and the movies I often gravitate to are the ones with a foodie theme. Over the years, some of my faves have been Babette’s Feast, Big Night, Eat Drink Man Woman, Food Inc., and my ALL-TIME favorite … Tortilla Soup.

Last year, 39 million people watched the Oscars; that’s a lot of parties! In honor of Oscar night, this month’s Recipe Redux cooking challenge theme was to create a healthy recipe inspired by a favorite food scene or featured dish from any movie. Once I heard about the challenge, Tortilla Soup came immediately to mind … and so did this bean-filled recipe for South-of-the-Border Tortilla Soup, adapted from our second cookbook, No Whine with Dinner.

I had so much fun taking photos of this colorful and nutrient-rich soup!

I grew up in a family of three girls — I’m the “pickle in the middle” — so maybe that’s why I loved Tortilla Soup so much. It’s about a Mexican-American family living in California. The dad is a widower, and his three grown daughters still live under his roof. The dad is a chef, and his elaborate, home-cooked meals always bring the family together. The movie is filled with all sorts of hilarious happenings (which often unfold at the dinner table), though some of the scenes are a bit spicy. Chefs Mary Sue Milliken and Susan Feniger (AKA Too Hot Tamales) worked on the movie set preparing and styling the food.

I made some tweaks to our original recipe. Instead of using a 15-ounce can of tomato sauce, I used a 15-ounce can of super-flavorful Muir Glen Organic 2012 Reserve Fire Roasted Petite Diced Tomatoes. I pureed the tomatoes before adding because my boys don’t like lumps. I added a few pinches of chipotle chili powder, and for the toppings, I tossed in some leftover roasted chicken.

South-of-the-Border Tortilla Soup

Makes 6 Servings

This recipe is adapted from No Whine with Dinner: 150 Healthy, Kid-Tested Recipes From the Meal Makeover Moms. It calls for making your own corn tortilla chips. But you could certainly use your favorite store-bought chips instead. I love this recipe because it’s perfect for cozy family dinners and entertaining. You can make it vegetarian by using vegetable broth and opting out of the optional chicken topping.

  • 2 tablespoons expeller pressed canola oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, cut into ¼-inch dice (about 1 cup)
  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • One 32-ounce carton all-natural chicken broth or vegetable broth (4 cups)
  • One 15-ounce can fire roasted petite diced tomatoes (or tomato sauce), pureed as desired
  • One 15-ounce can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen corn kernels, thawed
  • Ten 6-inch corn tortillas, sliced in half and then sliced into ¼-inch-wide strips
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon cold water
  • Optional toppings: Shredded reduced-fat Monterey Jack or Mexican blend cheese, diced avocado, diced roasted chicken, chopped fresh cilantro, reduced-fat sour cream, lime wedges

1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large Dutch oven or saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 7 minutes.  Add the garlic, cumin, and chili powder and cook an additional 1 minute.

2. Stir in the broth, tomatoes, black beans, and corn. Cover, raise the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the flavors meld, about 10 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400°F.  Place the corn tortilla strips in a large bowl and toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil until well coated.  Place on a baking sheet and cook until golden and crispy, stirring halfway through to ensure even cooking, 10 to 15 minutes.

4. To add more body to the soup, whisk together the cornstarch and water in a small bowl (this is called a slurry). Bring the soup back up to a boil, stir in the slurry, and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens slightly, about 3 minutes.

5. Serve in individual bowls, top with the tortilla chips and the optional toppings as desired.

Nutrition Information per Serving (1 generous cup): 210 calories, 6g fat (0g saturated, 0.4g omega-3), 630mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate, 6g fiber, 7g protein, 10% vitamin A, 10% vitamin C, 10% iron

Print Recipe

I used my Diptic app to merge my two photos together. Which photo do you like better? The one on the left features a flow blue plate that I bought at a local antique shop. The picture on the right showcases a bowl that was handed down from my great grandmother, Katie London. (And yes, she emigrated to the U.S. from the U.K.)

Read on for all of the other amazing and nutritious Oscar party recipes from my fellow Recipe Redux dietitian bloggers:
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