Friday, January 31, 2014

Supreme Pizza with Cauliflower Crust

I've been wanting to try this recipe for so long and with the gluten-free craze in full swing, this is a great substitute to standard pizza crust. Yes, it doesn't taste exactly like normal crust, but it has a really good flavor and I didn't feel weighed down after eating it. I topped the pizza with turkey pepperoni (which has 60% less fat than regular pepperoni), baby bella mushrooms and green peppers.

I recommend drizzling each slice with a small amount of light blue cheese or ranch dressing or topping it with hot giardiniera (pickled vegetables) for an added boost of flavor. Pair with a leafy green salad and you've got a complete meal!



This recipe is ready in 30 minutes and cost me $9.75 (awesome, right?).

1. Preheat oven to 450.
2. Place cauliflower florets in a blender or food processor. Process until the cauliflower resembles "snow", about 15 seconds. Transfer to a bowl.


3. Microwave cauliflower for 4 minutes and allow to cool.

4. Beat egg in a small bowl. Add garlic, oregano, pepper and cheese.



5. Add egg mixture to the cauliflower and stir to combine.


6. Transfer "dough" to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and coated with cooking spray (or use a silpat if you have one). Use your hands to spread the dough into a 1/2-inch layer. Bake for 15 minutes.


7. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet and add mushrooms and green pepper. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.


8. Top crust with pepperoni, sautéed mushroom and pepper and 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese. Bake for 5 minutes longer.




9. Allow pizza to cool for 5 minutes before cutting.

Supreme Pizza with Cauliflower Crust 
Serves 4

All you need:
Crust 
1 small head cauliflower, florets only
2 eggs
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 cup shredded provolone cheese
1/2 cup mozzarella cheese

Toppings
8 oz. sliced baby bella mushrooms
1 green pepper, seeded and diced
20 turkey pepperonis
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 450.
2. Place cauliflower florets in a blender or food processor. Process until the cauliflower resembles "snow", about 15 seconds. Transfer to a bowl.
3. Microwave cauliflower for 4 minutes and allow to cool.
4. Beat egg in a small bowl. Add garlic, oregano and pepper and cheese.
5. Add egg mixture to the cauliflower and stir to combine.
6. Transfer "dough" to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and coated with cooking spray (or use a silpat if you have one). Use your hands to spread the dough into a 1/2-inch layer. Bake for 15 minutes.
7. Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp. olive oil in a large skillet and add mushrooms and green pepper. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.
8. Top crust with pepperoni, sauteed mushroom and pepper and 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese. Bake for 5 minutes longer.
9. Allow pizza to cool for 5 minutes before cutting.


Nutrition facts provided by foodlabelpro.com

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Chicken Mole Enchiladas

Today I was feeling a little adventurous and was ready to experiment with some new flavors. Ever since Josh and I traveled to Mexico a few years back I've always wanted to try making my own homemade mole sauce. But, because I don't have a huge pantry or the resources to get all the authentic Mexican ingredients, I figured I would try my best to work with what I had. The end result was actually quite good and WAY simpler. Some mole sauces can have up to 20 ingredients, but mine has 9!

To make the enchiladas, I also took a shortcut by using one of my favorite go-to ingredients: rotisserie chicken. It's a little more expensive than buying plain chicken and baking it, but I think it has more flavor and it's a huge time saver.

Garnished with light sour cream and pickled jalapeños, this dish is sweet and spicy (the best combo!). If you want the sauce spicier, simply add more chipotle peppers....but be careful! They're super potent, so add them to the blender one at a time until you get the right balance.



This recipe is ready in 45 minutes and cost me $22.50.

1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender.


2. Add tortilla chips, chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, peanut butter and oregano and process for 30 seconds. Add chicken broth, cocoa powder and sugar and process for another 30 seconds.




3. Transfer mixture to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper.

4. Meanwhile, shred rotisserie chicken.


5. Spread a thin layer of mole sauce onto the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish.


6. Place a small handful of chicken onto each tortilla, roll up and place in the dish. Once all 5 are in the pan, top with remaining mole sauce.



7. Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes or until cheese has melted.



8. Top each enchilada with a dollop of sour cream, 2-3 pickled jalapeños and a sprinkle of chopped cilantro.

Chicken Mole Enchiladas 
Serves 5

All you need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large yellow onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
10 tortilla chips, crushed
2 chipotle peppers in adobo
1 tablespoon adobo sauce (from the same can)
2 tablespoons natural creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 1/2 cups reduced sodium chicken broth
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar (or honey)
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 rotisserie chicken, skin removed
5 (8-inch) flour tortillas
4 oz. shredded monterey jack cheese

Garnishes
Light sour cream
Pickled jalapeños
Fresh cilantro

All you do:
1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender.
2. Add tortilla chips, chipotle peppers, adobo sauce, peanut butter and oregano and process for 30 seconds. Add chicken broth, cocoa powder and sugar and process for another 30 seconds.
3. Transfer mixture to a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Meanwhile, shred rotisserie chicken.
5. Spread a thin layer of mole sauce onto the bottom of a 13x9 baking dish.
6. Place a small handful of chicken onto each tortilla, roll up and place in the dish. Once all 5 are in the pan, top with remaining mole sauce.
7. Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes or until cheese has melted.
8. Top each enchilada with a dollop of sour cream, 3-4 pickled jalapeños and a sprinkle of chopped cilantro.



Nutrition facts provided by foodlabelpro.com


Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Game Day Snacks

The Super Bowl is right around the corner and that means lots of yummy food and drinks. Although comfort foods are often seen as bad choices, I say why not still serve those items but incorporate healthier ingredients? Most of the time, no one will be able to tell the difference. Some of my favorite "trick" items are chicken or turkey sausage, yogurt-based salad dressings and low-fat cheeses.

Fruits and vegetables often get let out off of the menu, but if you bring a tray with an array of vegetables and fruits along with dips (like hummus and fruit dip or yogurt) people will take notice.

These three recipes are bite-sized so they're fun for kids to help prepare as well. Let's get snacking!



Mini Potato Skins 
Serves 12

All you need:
1 (1.5 pound) bag Hy-Vee Smart Bites baby blondes potatoes*
1/4 cup Bolthouse Farms chunky blue cheese yogurt salad dressing, plus additional for serving
2 tablespoons buffalo wing sauce
6 oz. 2% sharp cheddar cheese
4 green onions, sliced thin

All you do:
1. Microwave the potatoes (in their packaging) for 8 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before handling.
*If you can't find this kind of potato, simply buy 1.5 pounds of baby Yukon Gold potatoes, poke each once with a knife and cook in a microwave-safe bowl for 8 minutes.

2. Preheat oven to 350.
3. Cut the potatoes in half and use a small spoon or melon-baller to scoop out the insides, leaving a 1/4-inch rim around the edge. Arrange the potato kins cut-side-up on a heavy baking sheet. Brush the insides with blue cheese dressing. Bake 10 minutes; flip the potatoes so the cut side is down and bake another 10 minutes.



4. Turn the potatoes over so the cut side is up. Sprinkle with hot sauce and fill with shredded cheese. Bake 5 minutes or until cheese is melted.


5. Top with scallions. Serve with additional blue cheese dressing, if desired.

Nutrition information per serving (4 potato skins): Calories 154, Total fat 4g, Saturated fat 2g, Cholesterol 15mg, Sodium 307mg, Carbohydrate 19g, Fiber 3g, Protein 10g

Beer Braised Hot Links
Serves 12

All you need:
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 (13.5 oz.) package Johnsonvile smoked turkey sausage, sliced into rounds
3/4 cup red pepper jelly
1/2 cup honey
1 (12 oz.) Amber Bock beer (or choose your favorite)

All you do:
1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage rounds and cook, stirring occasionally, until crispy and golden brown, about 5 minutes.

2. Add pepper jelly and honey and stir to combine.

3. Top with beer and bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook until sauce has thickened and is slightly sticky. Transfer sausage to a platter and serve with toothpicks.


Nutrition information per serving (4 sausage rounds): Calories 130, Total fat 4g, Saturated fat 1g, Cholesterol 22mg, Sodium 375mg, Carbohydrate 17g, Fiber 0g, Protein 5g

Cheese Poppers
Serves 8

All you need:
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
2 tablespoons panko breadcrumbs
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
8 Weight Watchers jalapeño cheese sticks
Nonstick cooking spray
1 cup pizza sauce, warmed

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 350.
2. In one bowl, combine both types of bread crumbs and thyme. In two separate bowls, place eggs and flour.

3. Cut each cheese stick into three pieces. Dip each piece into flour, then egg, then crumb mixture. Arrange coated pieces on a prepared baking sheet. Spray cheese poppers with cooking spray.


4. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes or until cheese is softened. Serve with pizza sauce.

Nutrition information per serving (3 poppers and 2 tablespoons sauce): Calories 125, Total fat 4g, Saturated fat 1g, Cholesterol 10mg, Sodium 341mg, Carbohydrate 13g, Fiber 1g, Protein 9g