For the past two weeks I have been traveling, and haven't had a chance to sit down and post a blog. My apologies! But, after some requests I feel it's time to share some spring ideas to help your mouth ready for the succulent treats of spring!
Spring Salad--Inspired by a Cooking Light recipe in April 2009 Ingredients: 5 radishes, thinly sliced 2 celery stalks, thinly sliced 3 carrots, use a vegetable peel to make long slices 4 cups lettuce--your choice! Arugula & Mizuna worked fabulously in this recipe 4 green onions, thinly sliced 2 Tb. mint, chopped* 2 Tb. parsley, chopped* 1 lemon, zested and juiced 2 Tb. olive oil 1/2 ts. kosher or sea salt 5-6 grinds on a pepper mill 4 oz goat cheese, crumbled
Directions: In a large bowl toss all vegetables together. Top with herbs, then lemon zest and juice, and finish with olive oil. Toss again. Sprinkle with S&P and crumble goat cheese over top. Serve! *Note, any fresh herbs can work--this is just some of what I grow; thus, it's what I used! Cilantro, basil, thyme, or dill could all work in this!
Along side of this fabulous salad I served Grilled Chicken with Mango Salsa! YUM! Ingredients: 4 chicken breasts, skinless & boneless 3 limes, juiced 2 garlic cloves, crushed 1/2 ts. salt 3 Tb. olive oil Directions: Marinate chicken breasts in above mixture for at least 30 minutes, and no more than 4 hours. Grill on medium-high heat for 8-10 minutes on each side. Cook until internal temperature reaches 165*F on a meat thermometer.
Mango Salsa Ingredients: 1 mango, cut into small cubes 1/4 red onion, minced 1 tomato, seeded and diced 1 avocado, cubed 1/2 jalapeno (or more who like heat), minced 1/4 cup cilantro, chopped 1/2 lime, juiced Salt to taste Directions: Mix & immediately serve over chicken breasts!
My whole meal was Spring Salad, Chicken breasts with Mango Salsa, Black Beans, & Brown Rice. The above serves 4 and took about an hour to pull together! Enjoy! Oh, and my camera broke; thus, I will post pics when I can!
Brace yourself...One of my all time favorite meals is chicken fried steak, greens, & beer bread! Of course all of the added fat, grease, and gristle does not make it a favorite of my stomach or heart! So, how can I make it healthier and still tasty?
Looking through my CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box I saw Swiss Chard and decided that it would be a perfect stand in for my greens. Next, I pulled out Venison Round Steaks (Thank you Steve & Robyn!!!), panko bread crumbs, and beef base (the makings of beef broth). Lastly, I pulled out some fresh herbs and a bottle of beer to whip up some of my favorite bread! Hands down this was 5-stars! My husband placed it up there with his top 5 dishes! I hope you give it a try! And yes, the Chicken Fried Steak was crunchy and delicious!
First things first--get the bread started!
3 cups flour, all purpose
1 Tb. baking powder
3 Tb. sugar
1 ts. salt
1/4 cup fresh herbs (I used dill tonight)
1 bottle of beer
1/4 cup butter, melted
Heat oven to 375*F. Spray a bread pan with cooking spray. In a bowl whisk together dry ingredients. Add beer & butter and stir just until combined--don't overmix quick breads! Pour into bread pan and bake for 35-45 minutes.
A Spin on Chicken Fried Steak
2 thin round steaks, venison or beef
1/4 cup whole wheat flour--you can use white, too
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs, this makes it so don't substitute
1 Tb. olive oil
Place flour on one plate and panko crumbs on another. Heat olive oil in a heavy skillet (I prefer cast iron). Dip steaks into flour, and then place on panko plate and press into meat. Place meat into hot skillet and cook for 5 minutes on each side. Place meat onto a serving platter. Don't season with S&P, because the gravy takes over for it!
Peppercorn Brown Gravy
In meat skillet add 1 tablespoon of butter and 2 tablespoons of white flour. Whisk until light brown color. Pour 2 cups of beef broth into pan and stir until thickened. Add 1 ts of cracked pepper and stir. Serve over meat!
Now for the greens...
Sauteéd Swiss Chard
1 Tb. olive oil
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 bunch of swiss chard, washed
1/2 lemon, zested and juiced
salt to taste
In a skillet, sauté onion and garlic for 3 minutes over medium high heat. Meanwhile prepare swiss chard. Chop stalks and set aside. Chop leaves and set aside. Add stalks to onion mixture and sauté for 4 minutes. Add leaves and cover for 3 minutes, stir, and repeat. Once the mixture begins to wilt add lemon zest and juice. Season with salt and serve!
There is something so simple about frittatas and filling! I had a little more ground beef that I needed to use before my 3-day window for food safety was up; thus, I had to get creative again. So, spinning off my idea from the other night I decided to do an Italian rendition with my beef mixture. Most of all, I hope my ideas allow you to be more creative with your next batch of leftovers!
Empanada filling--take two!
1 1/2 cups ground beef, cooked
1/2 pkg of mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, minced
1 Tb. olive oil
6 eggs, or 1 1/2 cup egg substitute
3 oz goat cheese
Bruschetta Mixture (see recipe below)
Preheat oven to 350*F. In a heavy skillet heat olive oil and add bell peppers and mushrooms. Sauté for 4 minutes. Add ground beef and heat for 2 minutes. Whisk eggs and pour over eggs. Top with crumbled goat cheese. Allow to cook over medium heat for 3 minutes and then finish in oven for 5-10 minutes or until middle is set. Serve with Bruschetta:
Looking back, most of my fondest memories are accompanied by fabulous food, family, and friends. As a dietitian, wife, and athlete my thoughts constantly revolve around food. This blog is meant to share some of my "edible thoughts" on ways to save time, create quick treats, balance the scales of life, and focus on health. I hope you find something tasty to chew on!