Saturday, April 28, 2012

Simple Strawberry Mousse

This recipe is a little more time consuming, but the taste is light and wonderful. I added a pirouette cookie for an additional 1 point, but that is optional.

Serves 6 ( 4 points +)

  • 1 c. finely chopped strawberries
  • ½ c. sugar, divided
  • 5 T. water
  • ¾ tsp. unflavored gelatin
  • dash of salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • ¼ tsp. vanilla
  • ½ c. heavy whipping cream

Combine chopped strawberries and 1 T. sugar in a food processor. Let stand 10 minutes. Process until smooth.

Pour 2 T. water in a large bowl. Sprinkle with gelatin and let stand for 5 minutes.

Place 6 T. sugar, 3 T. water and dash of salt in a small heavy saucepan over medium heat;. Bring to a boil, stirring just until sugar dissolves. Cook, without stirring about 4 minutes.

Add egg whites to gelatin mixture; beat with an electric mixer until foamy. Gradually add remaining 1 T. sugar, beating at high speed until soft peaks form. Gradually pour hot sugar syrup into egg white mixture, beating first at medium speed and then at high speed until stiff peaks form. Beat in vanilla.

Place cream in a large bowl; beat with a mixture at high speed until stiff peaks form. Gently fold ¼ egg white mixture unto whipped cream. Fold remaining egg white mixture into whipped cream. Fold in strawberry mixture.

Spoon about ½ c. mousse into 6 dessert cups and chill for 2 hours or until set.

from "Cooking Light"

Jerk Chicken and Stuffed Mini Bell Peppers

A tray of these stuffed mini peppers would make great appetizers too!

This recipe was made on a George Foreman grill since we ran out of propane for our gas grill. I cooked the peppers on a grill pan. You can cook the chicken on a regular grill if you like. I served this meal with garlic toast and a salad.

Serves 8 ( 1 chicken thigh and 2 stuffed peppers = 4 points+) If you want to double this, it would be 9 points + per serving of 2 thighs and 4 peppers.

  • ⅓ c. sliced green onions, divided
  • ⅓ c. chopped shallots, divided
  • 1 T. brown sugar
  • 3 T. lime juice, divided
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • ½ tsp. ground allspice
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 1 large serrano or jalapeno pepper, stemmed ( seeded if you do not like it hot)
  • 8 bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed
  • ⅓ c. reduced-fat cream cheese
  • 2 T. chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 T. fat-free sour cream
  • 8 mini bell peppers

Combine ¼ c. green onions, ¼ c. shallots, brown sugar, 2 T. lime juice, olive oil, allspice, garlic and serrano or jalapeno pepper in a food processor. Process until smooth.

Place the skinned chicken in a large bowl. Add half of the onion mixture and toss to coat. Grill until juices run clear and chicken is cooked through. Brush with remaining onion mixture while grilling.

Combine cream cheese, cilantro, sour cream, 1 T. lime juice, remaining green onions and shallots in a small bowl. 
Halve the peppers lengthwise and discard seeds. Spoon cream cheese mixture evenly into peppers. Cook on a grill rack coated with nonstick spray for 7-8 minutes or until peppers are lightly charred. You can also cook these right on your grill on medium heat.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Friday, April 27, 2012

Browned Butter Asparagus

Another great recipe adapted from "Cooking Light". At only 2 points +, you can enjoy the butter in this dish! This recipe is quick and consists of simple ingredients.

Serves 8 ( 2 points +)

  • 2 lbs. asparagus, trimmed
  • 3 T. butter
  • salt and pepper to taste
Bring a large saucepan of water to a boil. Add asparagus and cook for 3-5 minutes. Drain.
In a large nonstick skillet, melt butter until browned and fragrant. Add salt and pepper. Add asparagus to the pan and cook 1 minute. Toss to coat and heat through.

Avocado-Butter Lettuce Salad

I think I could eat this fresh tasting salad every day!

serves 4 ( 3 points+)

  • 1 c. thinly sliced red onion
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 1 T. lime juice
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 5 oz. butter lettuce
  • 1 c. sliced avocado

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl. Let stand 10 minutes. Add lettuce and avocado; toss gently.

"Cooking Light"

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Italian Style Eggs

This recipe is a twist on eggs and hashbrowns. Ready-made polenta adds both a crunchy and creamy texture. I used a sun-dried tomato polenta for this recipe. You can make your eggs any style that you like. I prefer scrambled.

serves 4 ( 4 points+)

  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 8 oz. ready made polenta, cut into 4 slices
  • salt, pepper and basil to taste
  • 4 eggs

Heat half of the oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add polenta slices and cook until crispy and lightly browned on each side. Remove from the pan and keep warm. Add tomatoes, sprinkle with salt, pepper and basil. Cook until the tomatoes begin to slightly carmelize. Set aside and keep warm.
Heat remaining ½ T. oil in the pan. Cook eggs to your liking.

adapted from the cookbook "Cook Yourself Thin, Faster"
Top Polenta with eggs and tomatoes.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spicy Zucchini Sausage Pasta

The pasta in this dish is not the main attraction, but offers a nice, supporting role. The sausage will need to be made ahead of time. The best way to do this is to brown in and then cook it on low in the marinara sauce for about 3 hours.

serves 6 ( 10 points +)

  • 8 oz. uncooked spaghetti
  • 1 package Jenny O hot turkey Italian sausage links, cooked and sliced
  • 1 medium zucchini, sliced
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
  • 3 c. marinara sauce
  • 6 T. grated Parmesan cheese

Boil spaghetti until aldente. Drain.

Meanwhile, heat 1 T. olive oil in a nonstick skillet. Add zucchini, sprinkle with salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes. Cook until tender and lightly browned.

Combine pasta, sausage and zucchini. Dish onto plates and top each with 1 T. Parmesan cheese.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Lemon Scones

Yummy! That is all that needs to be said about these delicious scones!

serves 8 ( 5 points +)

  • 2 c. flour
  • ¼ c. sugar substitute such as "Ideal" or Splenda
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. baking soda
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ½ c. Country Crock Light butter spread
  • ½ c. dried cranberries
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • ½ c. low-fat buttermilk


  • ¼ c. powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar substitute, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Cut in butter spread until coarse crumbs are formed. Stir in cranberries and lemon juice. Add buttermilk, stirring until mostly mixed. Knead 5-10 times until ingredients are combined and no longer dry.

Coat a large baking sheet with nonstick spray. Press scone mixture into an 8 inch circle. Cut to, but not thorough to form 8 triangles.

Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool completely. 

Whisk icing ingredients together and drizzle over scones. Cut all the way through each triangle and serve.

Chopped Salad with Cilantro Lime Dressing

Here is another great recipe from the "Diabetes Comfort Food Cookbook". This salad makes quite a pretty presentation too.

serves 8 ( 3 points+)

  • 4 c. thinly sliced Romaine lettuce
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, chopped
  • 2 Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • ½ English cucumber, chopped
  • 1 c. canned black beans, rinsed and drained


  • 2 T. cider vinegar
  • 2 T. fresh lime juice
  • 2 T. chopped cilantro
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ c. olive oil

Place lettuce on a shallow platter. In rows, arrange the vegetables and black beans.
Whisk dressing ingredients together and drizzle over salad.

Chicken with Caramelized Onions and Raspberry Sauce

I love going to the library and looking through the newest cookbooks. Recently, I came across this book called, "The Diabetes Comfort Food Cookbook". Since my dad is a diabetic, I thought I would check this out and see if there were any interesting recipes that might appeal to his tastes.
This chicken was very full of flavor and is pretty quick to make! We all enjoyed it, including my dad!

serves 6 ( 6 points+)

  • ½ c. seedless raspberry preserves
  • 1-½ tsp. crushed ginger
  • 1 T. red wine vinegar
  • 1 T. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 6 ( 4 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1-½ T. canola oil, divided
  • 1 onion, halved and sliced

In a small bowl, combine preserves, ginger, vinegar and soy sauce. Set aside.

Heat 1 T. oil in a large skillet. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Add chicken to the pan and sear for about  5 minutes on each side. Remove chicken from pan.

Add remaining ½ T. oil to pan. Add onion and cook until browned and tender. Add preserve mixture to the pan and heat through. Return chicken to the pan, turn to coat and cook an additional 2-3 minutes or until heated through and cooked through.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Sweet Potato Gratin

This dish may not look all that impressive, but it tastes great…true comfort food!

serves 6 ( 4 points+)

  • ⅔ c. fat - free chicken broth
  • ⅓ c. heavy cream
  • 1-½ lbs. sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
  • salt to taste
  • 1 T. flour
  • 2 T. Parmesan cheese, grated

Spray and 8" square baking dish with nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 375
Combine chicken broth and heavy cream in a measuring cup.

Place ⅓ of the potatoes in the bottom of the baking pan. Sprinkle with salt and ½ T. flour. Pour ⅓ of the broth mixture over the potatoes. Layer another ⅓ of the potatoes over the top. Sprinkle with salt and the remaining ½ T. flour. Pour over another ⅓ of the broth mixture.
Top with remaining ⅓ potatoes, sprinkle with salt, pour over last ⅓ of broth mixture and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. 

Cover with foil and bake for 35 minutes. Uncover and bake an additional 35-40 minutes or until liquid is reduced ( the gratin will not be entirely dry) and top is browned. Let stand 15 minutes before serving.

adapted from the cookbook "Cook Yourself Thin Faster"

Orange Avocado Salad

This is another awesome, flavorful salad! I hope you like it!

serves 8 ( 3 points+)

  • 1 head red -leaf lettuce torn
  • ½ c. thinly sliced red onion
  • 1 c. mandarin oranges
  • 1 medium avocado, diced


  • 3 T. juice from Mandarin oranges
  • 2 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. raspberry vinegar
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste

Place lettuce on a large platter. Top with onion, oranges and avocado. 
Whisk dressing ingredients and drizzle over salad.

Chipotle Pork

serves 8 ( 6 points+)

  • ½ c. chopped onion
  • 1-½ T. honey
  • 1 tsp. ground cumin
  • ⅛ tsp. cinnamon
  • 9 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 chipotle chilies in adobo sauce
  • 1 lime
  • 2T. olive oil, divided
  • 2-¼ lb. pork shoulder, trimmed
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • ½ c. fat-free chicken broth

Combine the first 6 ingredients in a food processor. Peel and section lime. Squeeze out lime juice and add juice and lime sections ( not peel) to the food processor along with the olive oil. Process. 
Place marinade in a large ziplock bag. Add pork, seal and turn to coat. Refrigerate for one hour.

Heat 1 T. olive oil in a Dutch oven. Remove pork from marinade (reserve marinade). Sprinkle pork with salt, brown on all sides. Remove pork, stir in reserved marinade and chicken broth, scraping the bottom to remove any browned bits.
Return pork to the pot, cover and cook in an oven heated to 325 for 2-½ hours or until able to shred with a fork. Shred and toss with sauce.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Lemon Risotto

perfect for a spring side dish!

serves 8 ( 6 points+)

  • 4 c. fat-free chicken broth
  • ½ c. white wine
  • 2 T. butter, divided
  • 2 large shallots, chopped
  • ½ c. fresh lemon juice, divided
  • 1-½ c. Arborio rice
  • ½ c. Parmesan cheese
  • ¼ c. mascarpone cheese ( or cream cheese)
  • zest of ½ of a lemon
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat chicken broth and ¼ c. lemon juice in a small saucepan. Reduce heat to low and keep warm.
Meanwhile, melt 1 T. butter in a large pot. Add shallots and cook until tender. Stir in Arborio rice so that it is coated with the butter. Add white wine and remaining ¼ c. lemon juice. Simmer until liquid is nearly dissolved. Add ½ c. broth mixture and simmer until liquid is dissolved. Repeat this procedure, adding broth mixture ½ cup at a time, until all of the broth is used. Remove from heat, stir in remaining 1 T. butter, parmesan cheese, lemon zest and mascarpone cheese.

adapted from the cookbook "Giada's Kitchen"

Sirloin with Chunky Tomato Sauce

This recipe serves 8 and is outstanding!

serves 8 ( 5 points+)

  • 2 lbs. lean sirloin
  • 4 tsp. olive oil, divided
  • 2 medium onions, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 can ( 15 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • ¼ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes2 T. chopped, fresh basil
  • salt to taste

In a large nonstick skillet coated with spray, heat 2 tsp. oil. Add onions and garlic and cook until tender. Add tomatoes, oregano, crushed red pepper flakes and salt to taste. Simmer until thickened and most of the liquid is absorbed ( about 20 minutes). Remove sauce from pan and keep warm. Wipe out pan with a paper towel.

Sprinkle steaks with salt. Add 1 tsp. olive oil to pan and cook the first steak until desired doneness. Repeat with second steak and 1 more tsp. oil. Let steaks stand 5-10 minutes before slicing.
Drain any grease from pan. Return tomato sauce to the pan and heat through, stirring to release any browned bits. Serve sauce over steak.

adapted from the cookbook "Skinny Italian"

Blintz Pancakes with Blackberry Syrup

These are quite possibly some of the best pancakes you will ever eat!

serves 4 ( 2 pancakes with syrup mixture = 4 points+)

  • ¾ c. fat-free small-curd cottage cheese
  • ¾ c. fat-free sour cream ( Breakstone's)
  • ½ tsp. vanilla
  • ¼ tsp. baking soda
  • ¾ tsp. baking powder
  • ¾ c. flour
  • dash of salt
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 tsp. sugar
  • 1 c. sugar-free maple syrup
  • 1 c. blackberries

Place egg whites and sugar in a standing mixer and beat until soft peaks form ( or use a hand mixer).
Combine cottage cheese and sour cream in a large bowl.
In a small bowl, combine flour baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add dry ingredients to cottage cheese mixture. Stir in ⅓ of the egg white mixture. Fold in remaining egg whites.

Heat a nonstick griddle coated with cooking spray. Drop batter by ¼ cup-fuls onto griddle. Cook 2-3 minutes or until browned. Flip and cook until other side browns and insides are fairly cooked. You may have to flip more than once.

Meanwhile, heat syrup with blackberries in a small saucepan until hot. Berries will soften a bit and give the syrup a pink-ish color.

adapted from the cookbook "Cook Yourself Thin Faster"


While trying to figure out how I was going to use up some left-over ham, I came across this recipe (adapted from the cookbook "Skinny Italian")

serves 8 ( 8 points+)

  • 12 oz. tagliatelle or fettuccini pasta
  • 3 T. olive oil
  • 2 T. butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 c. diced, lean ham
  • 2 c. frozen peas, thawed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • ¼ c. grated Parmesan cheese

Boil pasta until done and drain.
Meanwhile, in a large nonstick skillet, saute onions in oil until tender. Add butter and stir until melted. Add peas and ham and heat through. Add salt, pepper and pasta. Toss to coat. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Oven Roasted Chicken Dinner

This chicken turns out moist and juicy. It is sure to please the whole family. This entire dinner is made in one pan, so clean-up is easy!

serves 6 ( 9 points +)

  • 6 ( 4 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • ½ c. white wine
  • 4 T. olive oil, divided
  • 2 tsp. dried oregano
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 medium red potatoes, cut into eighths
  • 2 medium onions, cut into wedges
  • 3 carrots cut into ½" rounds
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, sliced into rounds
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. dried parsley

Place chicken between 2 pieces of plastic wrap and pound to ¼" thickness.
In a large ziplock bag, combine wine 3 T. olive oil and the next 4 ingredients (through lemon juice). Add chicken to the bag, seal and turn to coat. Refrigerate for 1-1-¼ hours.
Meanwhile, Toss potatoes and carrots with 1 T. olive oil. Place in a large baking dish. Cover with foil and bake at 375 for 45 minutes.  Remove foil and add the onion and tomatoes. Remove chicken from marinade and place on top of vegetables. Pour marinade over all. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Sprinkle with parsley.

Easy Chicken Tetrazzini

serves 12 ( 7 points +)

  • 8 oz. uncooked spaghetti
  • 1 c. onion, finely chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 6 c. cooked, cubed boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 c. reduced fat shredded cheddar
  • 2 c. part-skim shredded mozzarella
  • 2 cans Campbell's, Healthy Request cream of mushroom soup
  • 1-¼ c. skim milk
  • salt and pepper to taste

Break spaghetti in half and boil until al dente; drain.
In a large nonstick skillet coated with spray, saute onions until tender. Combine onions and remaining ingredients with spaghetti. Place in a 13 x 9 pan coated with nonstick spray. Bake, uncovered at 350 until bubbly and hot ( about 30-40 minutes)

Pepper Steak

This recipe was adapted from one my mother in law makes. It has been a family favorite for some time now.

serves 8 ( 6 points +)

  • 2 lbs. lean sirloin sliced thin
  • 1 c. onion, chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, sliced
  • 3 Roma Tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 beef bouillon cubes
  • 2 c. water
  • garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 T. cornstarch
  • 3-4 T. water
  • 4 c. cooked rice
  • 1 tsp. canola oil

Sprinkle sirloin with salt, pepper and garlic to taste. Heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray and oil. Brown beef until no longer pink. Add peppers, onions, bouillon cubes and 2c. water. Cover and simmer until steak and veggies are tender ( about 30 minutes) Add tomatoes and cook and additional 5 minutes. Bring to a boil. Mix cornstarch with 3-4 T. water. Add to pan and stir until thickened. Add more seasoning if desired. Serve over rice.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Patrician Potatoes

Sorry… I did not get a close-up of this picture.

These potatoes were a real treat for our Easter dinner. I hope you like them!

serves 16 ( 4 points+)

  • 5 lbs. Yukon Gold Potatoes, cubed ( leave skins on)
  • 2 T. butter
  • 1 c. fat-free sour cream
  • 8 oz. reduced fat cream cheese
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¼ c. Parmesan cheese, grated
  • paprika
Boil potatoes until tender. Drain and mash with butter, sour cream, cream cheese and salt. Place in a 13 x 9 pan coated with nonstick spray. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and paprika. 
Bake at 350, covered, for 25 minutes.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Baked Pasta with Spinach, Lemon, and Cheese

A nice, savory side dish! This goes well with any grilled entree. This would also work well as a main dish with just a salad to complete the meal. If you would like this as a main dish, then divide the pan into 8 equal servings. The points value would be 8+

serves 12 ( 5 points +) 

  • 10 oz. uncooked fusilli pasta
  • 1 ( 5oz) package fresh baby spinach
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • 4 c. chopped onion
  • ¼ c. flour
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2-½ c. skim milk
  • ½ c. white wine
  • 1 c. Parmesan cheese, divided
  • ¾ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. grated lemon rind
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • ¾ c. Panko Japanese breadcrumbs, divided

Preheat oven to 375. Cook pasta in boiling water until al dente. Remove from heat, stir in spinach and let stand for 2 minutes. Drain pasta and spinach mixture.
Meanwhile, heat a large nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray. Add olive oil. Cook onion until tender. Stir in flour and garlic. Cook 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk and wine. Cook until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in ¾ c. cheese, salt, lemon rind and pepper.
Add pasta mixture to cheese mixture, stirring to coat. Transfer mixture to a 13 x 9" pan coated with nonstick spray. Top pasta mixture with half if the Panko, then remaining ¼ c. cheese, then remaining Panko.
Cover with foil and bake for 30-35 minutes or until heated through.

adapted from "Cooking Light"

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Herb- Ricotta Stuffed Chicken Wrapped in Prosciutto

serves 8 ( 7 points +)

  • ½ c. low-fat ricotta
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 6 T. grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 2 crushed garlic cloves
  • dried parsley, basil and thyme to taste
  • 8 ( 4 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, butterflied
  • ¼ lb. prosciutto ( 8 thin slices)
  • 1 T. olive oil
  • ½ c. white wine
  • 2 T. butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl (through parsley, basil and thyme). After your chicken has been cut open (to, but not through the other side), place it on a sheet of plastic wrap. Place another sheet of plastic wrap over the top of chicken pieces. Pound to ¼" thickness.
Place equal amounts of ricotta mixture in the center of each chicken piece. Fold chicken over. Wrap 1 slice of prosciutto around each piece of chicken.

In an oven-proof skillet, drizzle 1 T. olive oil and swirl to coat. Add chicken and brown for 4-6 minutes, turning only once. Transfer pan to oven and cook 12-15 minutes or until chicken is cooked through.

Remove chicken from pan and place on a serving platter. Add wine and butter to pan. Cook until reduced to about ½. Spoon over chicken and serve.

adapted from "Every Day with Rachel Ray" magazine

Spinach Raddicchio Salad

Shown without dressing

Almost too pretty to eat!

serves 8 ( 2 points +)


  • 6 c. fresh spinach leaves
  • 1 small head radicchio, torn
  • ¼ c. finely chopped red onion
  • 1-½ c. fresh strawberries, sliced
  • ¼ c. dried cranberries
  • ¼ c. chopped walnuts, toasted


  • 3 T. raspberry vinegar
  • 3 T. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. honey
  • 1 tsp. Dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper to taste


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