Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Spicy Fall Veggie Chili with Jalapeño Fontina Croutons

Fall is my favorite favorite season by far. The crisp cool air blows through my window, the leaves are changing and I start wanting warm comfort food. I decided to go through my pantry and work with what I had and the result was mighty tasty, I must say. This chili has a unique flavor because of the butternut squash and the cinnamon. Of course I couldn't make chili without cornbread. But not just any cornbread....jalapeño cornbread croutons with creamy fontina cheese speckled throughout. You are in for a treat!

                                     


Spicy Fall Veggie Chili

1 clove garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, thinly sliced
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups butternut squash, diced
2 TB tomato paste
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 15 oz. can chickpeas, drained
1 15 oz. can black beans, drained
1 15 oz. can cannelini beans, drained
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes (not drained)
Juice of 1 lime
2 tsp brown sugar
2 TB fresh cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste

Method:
1. Heat 1 TB olive oil over medium high heat in a large saucepan and add garlic. Cook 1 minute (until fragrant) then add jalapeno, celery and butternut squash and cook 3-4 minutes longer. Season with salt and pepper.

2. Add tomato paste and the spices as well as 2 cups water and bring to a boil.

3. Once boiling, add the beans and diced tomatoes and reduce to a simmer.

4. Add the lime juice and brown sugar and adjust seasonings as needed.

5. Simmer at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to marry. Finish with fresh cilantro.

Serve with low fat sour cream or plain greek yogurt and the cornbread croutons (see below).




Jalapeno Fontina Cornbread Croutons

1 8.5 oz box cornbread mix
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1/2 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 oz fontina cheese, shredded

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 400. 

2. Blend ingredients and let sit 3-4 minutes.

3. Pour batter into a greased 8x8 baking dish and bake for 15-20 minutes. 

4. Let cool and cut into 1" cubes.

5. Lay on a cookie sheet and cook 5 minutes (or until crisp).



Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Peanut Butter Banana Oat Cookies

So normally I'm not really a sweets person and I run straight for the salty snacks. However, today I decided to try making one of my favorite desserts and turn it into something healthy (shocking, I know). These cookies can be eaten as dessert or they would be a perfect breakfast on the go paired with some fruit and milk. They would also be perfect after a workout because they're packed with protein!

Peanut Butter Banana Oat Cookies

2 1/2 cups raw oats
1 banana (ripe is better)
1/2 cup plain fat free Greek yogurt
3 tablespoons natural peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)
1 cup egg whites
1/2 tsp. sea salt
4 tsp. Splenda or honey
3 tablespoons mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients. Scoop 2 TB portions (or bigger if you like) onto a silpat. Bake 25-30 minutes until golden.




I'm on my 3rd cookie as we speak.....*nibble*