Friday, January 30, 2015

Goat Cheese and Sundried Tomato Mini Frittatas with Red Pepper Pesto

I love bite-sized foods! Not only are they cute, but they're also portion sized. What's nice about frittatas is they are good any time of day. While frittatas can be as simple as ham and cheese, these little beauties take it up a notch with sweet, chewy sundried tomatoes, creamy goat cheese and fresh red pepper pesto sauce. If you have any leftover pesto, simply toss it with whole grain pasta or spaghetti squash and top with a lean protein like grilled chicken sausage or broiled salmon. 



1. Preheat oven to 375. Coat a muffin tin with cooking spray.
2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add sundried tomato and cook for 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.


3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, half-and-half, pepper and salt.


4. Place an even amount of the shallot mixture in each muffin cup. Sprinkle each with goat cheese and parsley, then top with egg. Bake until just set in the center, about 15 minutes.



5. Meanwhile, combine the pesto ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth.


6. Remove frittatas with a spatula onto a serving platter. Serve topped with pesto.



Goat Cheese and Sundried Tomato Mini Frittatas with Red Pepper Pesto
Serves 6

All you need:
Non-stick cooking spray
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 shallot, minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup julienned sundried tomatoes
1 dozen large eggs
1/2 cup half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup crumbled goat cheese
1/2 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Pesto
4 roasted red bell peppers
1/2 cup toasted pinenuts
10 fresh basil leaves
2 garlic cloves
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 375. Coat a muffin tin with cooking spray.
2. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add sundried tomato and cook for 1 minute longer. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly.
3. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, half-and-half, pepper and salt.
4. Place an even amount of the shallot mixture in each muffin cup. Sprinkle each with goat cheese and parsley, then top with egg. Bake until just set in the center, about 15 minutes.
5. Meanwhile, combine the pesto ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth.
6. Remove frittatas with a spatula onto a serving platter. Serve topped with pesto.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Buffalo Chicken Tortilla Soup

With the big game right around the corner, it's time to get your menu in order. Living with a guy who loves buffalo sauce on anything, I knew he would be pretty happy with this one. This soup has the flavors of a buffalo chicken dip with the freshness of chicken tortilla soup. Topped with creamy avocado and crispy, salty tortilla strips, it's hard to stop at one bowl. Cheers!



1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, carrot, celery and jalapeño and cook until softened, about 2 minutes.


3. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and stir in the shredded chicken, buffalo sauce and ranch seasoning.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.




4. Meanwhile, place tortilla strips on a baking sheet in a single layer. Coat with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.

5. Add the cubed cream cheese to the soup and stir until melted. Finish with fresh cilantro and lime juice.


6. Serve soup topped with the crispy tortilla strips and diced avocado.


Buffalo Chicken Tortilla Soup
Serves 8

All you need:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
3 celery ribs, diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced
6 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups cooked, shredded chicken
1/2 cup buffalo sauce
2 tablespoons ranch seasoning mix

6 (6-inch) corn tortillas
Non-stick cooking spray
Salt

1 (8 oz.) package light cream cheese, cubed
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro, chopped
Juice of 1 lime
1 avocado, peeled, pitted and diced

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic, carrot, celery and jalapeño and cook until softened, about 2 minutes.
3. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and stir in the shredded chicken, buffalo sauce and ranch seasoning.  Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, place tortilla strips on a baking sheet in a single layer. Coat with cooking spray and sprinkle with salt. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown and crisp.
5. Add the cubed cream cheese to the soup and stir until melted. Finish with fresh cilantro and lime juice.
6. Serve soup topped with the crispy tortilla strips and diced avocado.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Farro and Kale Salad with Fresh Mango Vinaigrette

One of the top food trends for 2015 are ancient grains. I'm pretty pumped to see these grains getting some recognition since they are so nutrient dense. While there are several types to choose from, one of my favorites is farro. The chewy texture is very satisfying and works well as a replacement for rice. With 7 grams of fiber and 7 grams of protein per serving, farro will help keep you full longer. 

This salad has a wide variety of flavors - fresh mango, lime zest, cilantro, toasty almonds, salty feta cheese and nutty farro. YUM. Eat this dish all by itself or serve as a side dish with fish, chicken or pork. 




1. Rinse farro and place in a large saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid.


2. Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a blender. Pour into a large mixing bowl.



3. Add the chopped kale and toss gently for 1 minute to help break it down slightly.

4. Add the cooked farro, toasted almonds, feta and raisins to the kale and toss to combine. Adjust seasonings as needed and serve (or keep cold until ready to serve).




Farro and Kale Salad with Fresh Mango Vinaigrette
Serves 8

All you need:
2 cups uncooked farro
6 cups water

Vinaigrette
1 fresh mango, peeled, pitted and diced
1 small shallot, peeled and diced
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro
Juice and zest of 2 limes
2 teaspoons honey
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

1 small bunch kale, stemmed and finely chopped
1/2 cup slivered almonds, toasted
1/2 cup feta cheese
1/4 cup golden raisins

All you do:
1. Rinse farro and place in a large saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain off any excess liquid.
2. Combine the vinaigrette ingredients in a blender. Pour into a large mixing bowl.
3. Add the chopped kale and toss gently for 1 minute to help break it down slightly.
4. Add the cooked farro, toasted almonds, feta and raisins to the kale and toss to combine. Adjust seasonings as needed and serve (or keep cold until ready to serve).

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Crockpot Turkey and Veggie Chili

Josh and I have finally somewhat settled into our new house. After 2 weeks of packing and moving, I was so ready to get back in the kitchen today. I feel like we have eaten nothing but pizza and/or beer (depending on our stress level), so I decided to put my foot down today and get back into our healthy routine. 

Sweet potatoes and turkey are a perfect pair in this lovely chili that is chock-full of veggie goodness. And who doesn't love crockpot meals? Just prep and let this one simmer alllll day. And the leftovers are even better!



Colby was a great sous chef today :)


1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the celery, carrot and sweet potato and cook for 2 minutes longer, stirring occasionally.


2. Sprinkle in chili powder, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Add tomato paste and water and stir to combine. Transfer mixture to a slow cooker.



3. In the same pan, cook the ground turkey until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Pour over the cooked vegetable mixture.


4. Pour the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn and beans over the turkey. Stir, cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.


5. Right before serving, add the fresh basil.


6. Scoop chili into serving bowls and garnish with cheese, if desired.


Crockpot Turkey and Veggie Chili
Serves 8

All you need:
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 sweet potato, peeled and diced
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 cup water
1 pound 93% lean ground turkey
1 (28 oz.) can crushed tomatoes
1 (8 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 (15 oz.) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained and rinsed
10 fresh basil leaves, chopped
Shredded Monterey Jack cheese, for garnish (optional)

All you do:
1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the celery, carrot and sweet potato and cook for 2 minutes longer, stirring occasionally.
2. Sprinkle in chili powder, paprika, cumin, salt and pepper. Add tomato paste and water and stir to combine. Transfer mixture to a slow cooker.
3. In the same pan, cook the ground turkey until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Pour over the cooked vegetable mixture.
4. Pour the crushed tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn and beans over the turkey. Stir, cover and cook on low for 6-8 hours.
5. Right before serving, add the fresh basil.
6. Scoop chili into serving bowls and garnish with cheese, if desired.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Teriyaki Salmon and Avocado Wraps

After having a long discussion about heart-healthy fats with a client today, I was motivated to make a dinner that highlights two of my favorite foods: salmon and avocado. More famously paired together in a sushi roll, this wrap combines them with similar flavors like wasabi mayo. The homemade teriyaki sauce and array of fresh vegetables make this a meal to feel awesome about. If you have any extra, simply roll up, wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate for lunch the next day. 



1. Preheat oven to broil. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat and coat with nonstick spray.
2. In a food processor or blender, process the soy sauce, mirin, cider vinegar, honey and fresh ginger until smooth, about 15 seconds.



3. Lay the salmon filets on the prepared baking sheet and brush liberally with the marinade. Broil 5-7 minutes, or until tops are golden brown and bubbly. Rest 5 minutes.




4. Meanwhile, spread wasabi mayo evenly onto each wrap. Top with spring mix, red pepper, carrot, avocado and salmon. Wrap up burrito-style, cut in half and serve.






Teriyaki Salmon and Avocado Wrap
Serves 4

All you need:
1/3 cup light soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin (rice wine)
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon peeled and chopped fresh ginger
4 (5 oz.) salmon filets
4 tablespoons wasabi mayo
2 cups spring mix greens
1 red bell pepper, sliced thin
1 cup shredded carrot
1 large avocado, pitted, peeled and sliced thin
4 large whole grain wraps

All you do:
1. Preheat oven to broil. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silpat and coat with nonstick spray.
2. In a food processor or blender, process the soy sauce, mirin, cider vinegar, honey and fresh ginger until smooth, about 15 seconds.
3. Lay the salmon filets on the prepared baking sheet and brush liberally with the marinade. Broil 5-7 minutes, or until tops are golden brown and bubbly. Rest 5 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, spread wasabi mayo evenly onto each wrap. Top with spring mix, red pepper, carrot, avocado and salmon. Wrap up burrito-style, cut in half and serve.