Sunday, July 31, 2011

Fruit Shortcake Tart



Here is another great summer dessert. It is light and low on sugar…very refreshing and delicious!

serves 8 ( 5 points + )

  • 1-⅓  c. self-rising flour
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 T. light stick butter
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 6 T. skim milk
  • 8 oz. reduced fat cream cheese
  • 4 tsp. powdered sugar, divided
  • grated lemon zest from ½ lemon
  • 1 peach, pitted and sliced
  • 1-½ c. strawberries, halved
  • 1 c. fresh blueberries or raspberries
  • 1 T. honey


Preheat oven to 400. Place flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in milk until a soft dough forms.
Transfer dough to a sheet of parchment paper. Roll out with a floured rolling pin into an 8" circle. Transfer parchment and dough onto a baking sheet. Bake 12- 14 minutes or until golden. Cool.

Meanwhile, beat cream cheese, 1 T. powdered sugar and lemon zest. Spread over cooled tart. Top with fruit, drizzle with honey and sprinkle with remaining 1tsp. powdered sugar.

Maple- Turkey Burgers



This recipe comes from my friend, Kim. These burgers are moist and juicy. You can eat them plain or with provolone cheese and your favorite toppings. Kim says they are great with bbq sauce too! We used Village Hearth Light Italian buns. They are 2 points +.

Serves 8 ( 5 points + ) add additional points for toppings and bun
  • 20 oz. pkg. Jenny O ground turkey
  • 12 oz. maple breakfast sausage, ground or patties


Mix turkey with breakfast sausage. Form into 8 patties. Grill until done.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Chili-Rubbed Steak with Homemade Pico de Gallo and Avocado


Steaks with the chili spice rub- ready to go on the grill


Homemade Pico de Gallo with Avocado


Sliced, Grilled Steak with Topping
This recipe was easy to put together and was full of flavor. I hope you like it! This is great to make for a group or for a family of six, like mine, who likes to eat like they are a family of 12! If any of you have boys in the house, you will understand...


serves 12 (3 oz. cooked steak with pico de gallo = 4 points + )
  • 3 T. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. ½ tsp. dried oregano
  • ¼ tsp. ground cumin
  • 3 lbs. lean sirloin steak, trimmed

Pico de Gallo:
  • 5 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 small jalepeno, seeded and diced
  • 3 T. cilantro, chopped
  • ½ avocado, diced
  • lime juice and salt to taste

Mix spices together in a bowl. Rub over both sides of steak. Grill steak until desired doneness. Slice thinly.
Stir together ingredients for pico de gallo. Serve over steak

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Chocolate Cups with Ice-Cream

Triple Chocolate Cookie

Pistachio


My mom on her 64th birthday!


Today was my mom's birthday. Since it is summer and hot outside, I wanted to make something with ice-cream. Since my mom is an extreme chocolate lover, I needed to include that as well. These little cups fit the bill. These would be great for a child's birthday or a bridal or baby shower too!

Serves 12 ( 5 points +)



  • 12 oz. chocolate flavored almond bark (chocolate candy coating), divided
  • 12 foil muffin liners
  • low-fat or fat-free ice-cream or frozen yogurt



Line muffin cups with foil liners and set aside. 
Melt 6 oz. chocolate bark in microwave on high for one minute. Stir. If not completely melted, microwave in 10 second increments until melted.
Spoon mixture into muffin cups and spread up the sides with the back of a spoon. Freeze for 10 minutes. Repeat with remaining chocolate. Freeze until ready to serve. Remove foil liners and fill each cup with once scoop of ice-cream.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Green Beans Provencale





serves 4 ( 2 points + )

  • 1 lb. fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 4 green onions, sliced
  • 2 T. minced shallot
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ tsp. dried rosemary
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1-½ c. grape tomatoes, halved
  • 2 T. minced fresh basil
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper



Boil green beans until desired doneness. Drain.
Meanwhile in a large skillet, saute the onions, shallot, garlic and rosemary in oil until tneder. Add green beans, tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper; saute 2-3 minutes or until heated through.

Grilled Cod Pouches



These cod pouches are easy to make and take only about 5 minutes to grill!

serves 4 ( 3 points + )

  • 4 cod filets
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • garlic pepper seasoning
  • 4 lemon slices
Brush cod with olive oil, sprinkle with garlic pepper and top with lemon slices. Wrap in foil and grill for about 5 minutes or until fish easily flakes. Do not turn package when grilling.

Cherry Clafoutis



This is a classic French dessert that bakes quickly if you make it in individual ramekins. I found this recipe in a cookbook called"Yummy". This dessert is not very sweet, so it would make a nice breakfast too. It also pairs well with vanilla ice-cream.


serves 4 ( 4 points + )

  • 1-½ c. fresh cherries, pitted and halved
  • ⅓ c. flour
  • 2 T. sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ c. skim milk
  • 1 tsp. powdered sugar to serve
Preheat the oven to 400 with a baking sheet inside. Spray four (7 oz) ramekins with cooking spray. Divide the cherries into the ramekins.
Put the flour, sugar, eggs and milk in a blender or food processor and blend for 1-2 minutes or until smooth. Carefully pour the mixture into the ramekins. Bake for 20 minutes or until puffed and golden. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Apricot Glazed Chicken Thighs

grilled to perfection


grilled by Joey



serves 12 ( 4 points+ per thigh)
  • 3-⅓ lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs ( 12-14 thighs)
  • ½ tsp. crushed garlic
  • ¾ c. reduced sugar apricot preserves
  • 1 T. white vinegar
  • ¼ tsp. ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp. minced onion
  • salt and pepper to taste

In a small saucepan coated with cooking spray, saute garlic for 30 seconds. Add apricot preserves, vinegar, ginger, onion, salt and pepper. 
Place half of the glaze in a large ziplock bag. Add chicken, seal and turn to coat.

Heat a grill and spray the rack with cooking spray. Cook chicken until meat is no longer pink, basting with remaining glaze.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Fresh Cherry Cheesecake Bars





serves 12 ( 4 points + )

  • 1 c. cinnamon graham cracker crumbs
  • 3 T. light stick butter, melted
  • 1-¼ c. chopped pitted fresh cherries
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 1 T. water
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • ½ tsp. cornstarch
  • 6 oz. reduced-fat cream cheese
  • ⅓ c. fat-free plain Greek yogurt
  • ⅓ c. sugar
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 1 egg



Combine graham cracker crumbs and melted butter. Press into the bottom of an 8" square pan. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. Cool. Reduce oven temperature to 325.
Meanwhile, combine cherries, 1 T. sugar and 1 T. water in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduced heat and simmer until cherries are soft ( about 5 minutes). Combine lemon juice and cornstarch. Stir into cherry mixture and cook until thickened. Remove from heat and cool slightly.
While cherry mixture is cooling, place cream cheese, yogurt, sugar,  egg and vanilla in a food processor. Process until smooth. Spread over cooled crust. Dollop cherry mixture over cream cheese layer. Cut through with a knife to swirl.
Bake at 325 for 30-35 minutes or until set. Cool on wire rack. Cover and chill at least 3 hours. Cut into 12 bars.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Shrimp Avocado Salad



This salad, inspired by my friend over at "Skinny Taste", was awesome! I could eat this as a meal! I changed the original recipe a little and served it to guests tonight. They loved it! I hope you do too!

serves 6 ( 4 points+)

  • 1 lb. fully cooked shrimp, tails removed and halved
  • 1-¼ c. grape tomatoes, sliced into 4 pieces each
  • 1 medium Haas avocado, diced
  • ¼ c. red onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalepeno pepper, seeded and finely diced
  • 1 large cucumber, seeded and diced
  • ¼ c. cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tsp. olive oil
  • juice from 2 limes
  • salt and pepper to taste


Place onions in a small bowl with olive oil, lime juice, salt and pepper. Let stand while you prepare the rest of the salad.
Combine remaining ingredients in a bowl. Add onion mixture and toss to coat. Serve in individual dishes, if desired.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Spinach and Ricotta Pizza









Spinah and Ricotta Pizza is an amazing way to have a meatless meal. This recipe is easy and only has to bake for about 10-12 minutes. Serve with a salad and your meal is complete!

serves 6 ( 6 points+)
  • 1 Boboli thin crust original pizza crust (12")
  • ¾ c. pizza sauce
  • 2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1-½ c. loosely packed baby spinach leaves
  • ¾ c. part-skim mozzarella, shredded
  • ⅓ c. part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 2 plum tomatoes, thinly sliced


Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Top the Boboli crust with the ingredients in the order listed. Bake the pizza right on the oven rack for 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted. Remove from oven and cut into six slices.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Linguini with Two-Cheese Sauce





Another great summer meal for when you do not want to turn on the oven. This is filling and tastes fresh. Serve with a salad and French bread if desired.


serves 4 ( 1 c. = 9 points + )

  • 8 oz. uncooked linguini
  • 1 c. skim milk
  • 2 T. chopped fresh basil, divided
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ⅛ tsp. pepper
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. flour
  • ½ c. shaved fresh Parmesan cheese
  • 1-½ T. mascarpone cheese ( Italian cream cheese)



Cook pasta; drain.
Meanwhile, combine milk, 2 tsp. basil, salt and pepper in a bowl; stir with a whisk. 
Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Add oil to the pan. Add flour and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add milk mixture; cook for 3 minutes or until slightly thickened, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and add all but 2 T. Parmesan cheese and all of the mascarpone cheese to milk mixture. Add cheese mixture to pasta; toss to combine. Sprinkle with remaining basil and Parmesan cheese.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Strawberry Banana Smoothie


A great snack or light breakfast drink!

serves 4 ( 3 points+)

  • 1-½ c. Dannon Light and Fit Vanilla Yogurt
  • 2 large bananas
  • 3 c. frozen strawberries


Place all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth.

Minted Lemon-Lime Watermelon Fresca



I made this delicious drink the other night to go along with Chicken with Watermelon Salsa,
Chili Roasted Potatoes, salad and Cherry Upside Down Cakes. It was very refreshing.

serves 9 ( 3 points +)

  • 1-¼ c. water
  • ½ c. sugar
  • ⅓ c. coarsely chopped fresh mint
  • 1 T. grated lime rind
  • 1 T. grated lemon rind
  • 12 c. cubed seeded watermelon
  • ¼ c. lime juice
  • 3 T. lemon juice


Combine water and sugar in a small saucepan; bring to a boil and cook for 30 seconds or until sugar dissolves, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in mint, lime rind and lemon rind. Let stand for 20 minutes. Strain mixture over a bowl. Discard solids.

Place ⅓ of sugar mixture and watermelon in a blender. Process until smooth. Repeat two more times. Serve over ice.

from "Cooking Light"

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Chocolate Crepes











Crepes are very versatile. They can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert, depending on the type of fillings you use. These chocolate crepes would be great for breakfast or dessert. We had them for breakfast and filled them with strawberries, bananas, jam and even Nutella. If I were serving these for dessert, I would fill them with berries and whipped cream or ice-cream.

serves 8 ( 2 crepes = 3 points+)  add additional points for filling


  • 1-½ c. skim milk
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 egg
  • 1 c. flour
  • ¼ c. sugar
  • ¼ c. baking cocoa
  • ½ tsp. salt


In a medium bowl, whisk together all ingredients until fairly smooth.
Coat an 8" skillet with cooking spray. Pour about 3 T. crepe mixture into the center of the pan. Tilt pan to coat bottom evenly. Cook until top appears dry. Flip and cook an additional 15-20 seconds.
Fill with ingredients of your choice.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Hawaiian Pork





Serve this pork on Hawaiian sweet rolls. One roll is 3 points +, 2 rolls are 5 points+ Add points for rolls.
This recipe is tender and juicy. You will love it! I adapted this recipe from a recipe sent by my friend, Sabrina.

Hawaiian Pork: serves 25-30 ( 2 points +)

2-¾ lb. pork loin
1 onion, sliced
½ c. packed brown sugar
½ c. fat-free chicken broth
¼ c. low-sodium soy sauce
6 oz. pineapple juice
½ tsp. red pepper flakes
½ T. minced ginger (from a jar)
2 tsp. crushed garlic (from a jar)

In a medium bowl, stir together brown sugar, chicken broth, soy sauce, pineapple juice and red pepper flakes. Reserve half of this mixture for sauce later.
Place onion in the bottom of a crock pot coated with cooking spray. Place pork over onion and pour half of broth mixture over pork. Cover and cook on low for 7-8 hours or until easily shreddable. Shred pork.
In a small saucepan coated with cooking spray, saute ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add reserved broth mixture and cook until reduced ( about 10 minutes). Stir into shredded pork. Serve on Hawaiian rolls.

Summer Raspberry Salad


This nice, refreshing salad was a great accompaniment to our Hawaiian pork dinner tonight.

serves 6 ( 2 points + )

  • 8 c. lettuce
  • 6 oz. fresh raspberries
  • ½ English cucumber, thinly sliced
  • ¼ c. crumbled feta cheese
  • green onion, sliced thinly


Dressing:

  • ¼ c. raspberry vinegar
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • salt and pepper to taste
Place salad ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk together dressing ingredients. Drizzle dressing over salad and toss to coat. Serve immediately.

Cracker Cookies






Be careful! These cookies are highly addictive. Make sure you have plenty of friends to share them with!
They are gooey on the bottom, so store them in the refrigerator.

Makes 48 ( 2 points + )

48 saltine crackers
1 c. ( 2 sticks) light butter
1 c. brown sugar
12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Line a baking sheet ( 15 x 10) with foil and coat foil with nonstick spray. Line foil with saltines.
In a saucepan, melt butter with brown sugar. Spoon over crackers so that all crackers are covered.
Bake for 3-4 minutes or until crackers are slightly puffed and bubbly. Remove from oven and immediately sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let stand 1-2 minutes or until chips start to melt. Spread over crackers. Refrigerate until set. Cut into 48 squares.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Plum Kuchen

plums placed in a circular pattern before drizzling with sugar mixture

Just out of the oven





This is a perfect summer dessert, breakfast or brunch dish.
serves 10 ( 5 points +)



  • 1-½ c. flour
  • ⅔ c. + 2 T. sugar, divided
  • 2 T. brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • ⅜ tsp. salt, divided
  • ⅛ tsp. cardamom
  • 7 T. light stick butter, divided
  • ½ c. skim milk
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • 3 medium plums, pitted and sliced
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon rind
  • ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon



Preheat oven to 425 and spray a 9" round cake pan with cooking spray.
Combine flour, 2 T. sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, ¼ tsp. salt and cardamom in a bowl.
Cut in 4 T. butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Combine milk, vanilla and egg in a bowl. Add to dry ingredients and stir until moist. Spread in the bottom of the cake pan. Top with sliced plums in a circular pattern.
Combine remaining ⅔ c. sugar, ⅛ tsp. salt, lemon rind and cinnamon. Melt remaining 3 T. butter in microwave. Stir into sugar mixture. Drizzle evenly over plums. Bake 25-30 minutes or until browned and bubbling. Cool in pan for 1 hour on a wire rack. Cut into wedges.


adapted from "Cooking Light"

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Corn, Crab and Tomato Salad



This salad is perfect for a hot, summer day when you do not want to turn on the oven. You can eat this by itself for lunch or as a side dish with dinner. I served this with grilled bbq chicken and green beans.


serves 6 ( about 1 c. = 3 points +)



  • 5 T. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 T. lemon rind
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 ( 6 oz. cans crab meat, drained)
  • 1-½ c. frozen corn, thawed
  • ½ c. red bell pepper, chopped
  • ½ c. red onion, finely chopped
  • ¼ c. thinly sliced fresh basil leaves
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, halved



Whisk together first 6 ingredients ( through salt and pepper).
In a medium bowl, toss remaining ingredients. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat.

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