Sunday, June 30, 2013

Roasted Cauliflower Grilled Cheese with Jalapeno Aioli

Grilled cheese has been my favorite sandwich since I was a kid. This grown-up version of the grilled cheese sandwich is absolutely delicious.  Make sure you give this recipe a try.  No one is ever too old to enjoy a grilled cheese sandwich - especially this one!

1 medium onion, sliced into 1/4" thick rounds
3 TBS olive oil
1/4 small head of cauliflower, sliced into flat, 3/4" thick pieces
Sea salt and fresh-cracked black pepper
2 slices whole-grain bread
2 oz (3/4 cup) aged cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup baby arugula, washed and dried (or baby spinach)
1/2 TBS butter

1 TBS mayonnaise (I used low-fat mayo)
1 small garlic clove, minced
1/4 to 1/2 medium jalapeno, seeded and minced *
Pinch of sea salt

Preheat the oven to 425.

Add the onion and 1 1/2 TBS of the oil in a medium saute pan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until the onion is softened and caramelized, 20-25 minutes.  You will have about 1/2 cup of onion.

Gently toss the cauliflower pieces with the remaining 1 1/2 TBS of oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and spread the cauliflower in a flat layer on a baking sheet.  Roast for 10 minutes, or until lightly browned.  Flip the cauliflower, then roast for another 5 minutes, or until golden brown, watching carefully to make sure the pieces do not burn.

Combine all of the aioli ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Spread both slices of bread with aioli.  Layer 1 slice with caramelized onions, roasted cauliflower, shredded cheese and arugula.  Top with the other slice of bread.  Add the butter to the pan used to caramelize the onion, heat the pan over medium-low heat, and add the sandwich.  (Place the bread closest to the cheese layer on the bottom.)  Cook the sandwich for 4-6 minutes, or until the bottom is golden brown and the cheese is melting, applying pressure to the top of the sandwich with your spatula.  Flip the sandwich and brown the other side, about 3-4 minutes. 

* I didn't have a jalapeno when I made this sandwich, so I added about 2 tsp of pepper jelly and a few drops of siracha sauce to the mayo and garlic.  It was delicious.

Makes 1 sandwich

Source:  Relish - Daphne Oz


Scalloped Potatoes Au Gratin

These potatoes are much lower in fat and calories than traditional scalloped potatoes, yet they still have all of the delicious flavor. I like to serve these potatoes as a side with ham or pork chops.

3 lbs yellow potatoes (Yukon Gold) unpeeled, sliced into 1/8" slices
3 cups cold low-fat (1%) milk
1/4 cup flour
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large or 2 small sprigs of thyme
1 3/4 cups grated Gruyรจre cheese
1 1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350.  Spray a 2-quart shallow baking dish with cooking spray.

Place the potatoes in a large pot and cover with water.  Bring water to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer until the potatoes are just tender, about 8 minutes.  Do not overcook the potatoes.  Drain, set aside, and allow to cool slightly.

Place the milk and flour into a large saucepan and whisk until the flour is dissolved.  Add the garlic and thyme and heat over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture comes to a boil and is thickened, about 8 minutes.  Remove from the heat and discard the thyme sprig.  Add the salt and 1 cup of cheese, stirring until the cheese is melted.

Arrange half of the potatoes in the baking dish.  Pour half of the cheese sauce over the potatoes.  Add the remaining potatoes and top with the remaining cheese sauce.  Sprinkle with the remaining 3/4 cup cheese and bake until bubbling, about 25 minutes.  Set under the broiler and broil on high until the top is browned, about 2 minutes.

Makes 8 (1 cup) servings

Calories per serving:  280
Saturated Fat per serving:  5g

Source:  Comfort Food Fix - Ellie Krieger


Asian-Glazed Grilled Pork Tenderloin

When I bought this cookbook, I just knew I had to make this recipe. The pork was so tender and delicious. I served this with the cilantro and coconut rice and the Asian grilled green beans with mushrooms. A great summer dinner - no oven required.

1/4 cup hoisin sauce
2 TBS freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 TBS Dijon mustard
1 TBS honey
1 TBS sesame oil
1 TBS reduced-sodium soy sauce
1 TBS grated ginger root
2 tsp minced garlic
2 tsp grated lemon zest

3 (12 oz/ea) pork tenderloins

Make glaze by combining the glaze ingredients in a small bowl and mix well; set aside.

Preheat grill to medium-high heat.  Brush grill rack lightly with oil.  Grill pork for about 15-20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes.  Pork should be just slightly pink in the center (140-145 degrees).  Do not overcook the pork.  Remember the pork will continue to cook as it rests.

Brush pork generously with glaze during the last five minutes of cooking time.  The more you baste the pork, the better it will taste.  Make sure you use all of the glaze.

Place pork on a cutting board, cover loosely with foil and let rest for 5 minutes.  Cut pork into thin slices and serve.

Serves 6

Source:  The Looneyspoons Collection - Janet & Greta Podleski


Cilantro & Coconut Rice

Cilantro and coconut rice was the perfect accompaniment to the Asian-glazed pork tenderloin I made for dinner.  For a little more flavor, I added lime juice to my rice.

1 cup jasmine or basmati rice
1 cup coconut milk
1 cup water
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
1 TBS lime juice (optional)

Pour the coconut milk and water into a sauce pan; bring to boil.  Add the rice, cover, and reduce heat.  Simmer for about 15-20 minutes, until rice is cooked and fluffy.  Stir in the cilantro and lime juice, if using, before serving.

Serves 4



Asian Grilled Green Beans & Mushrooms

These beans went perfect with the Asian-Glazed Grilled Pork Tenderloin. I think next time I will make more of the sauce, warm it in the microwave and stir into the beans after they are done grilling.  The sauce is so flavorful.

1 TBS brown sugar
1 TBS sesame oil
1 TBS reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed
1 medium red onion, halved and thinly sliced
6 medium fresh mushrooms, quartered (I used a small box of mushrooms)

In a large bowl, combine the first five ingredients.  Add the beans, onion and mushrooms; toss to coat.

Place half of the vegetables on a double thickness of heavy-duty foil (about 18 inch square); fold foil around vegetables and seal tightly.  Repeat with remaining vegetables to make a second packet.

Grill, covered, over medium heat for 18-22 minutes or until beans are tender, turning packets over once.  Open foil carefully to allow steam to escape.

Makes 8 servings

Source:  Taste of Home 2009 Healthy Cooking Annual Recipes


Saturday, June 8, 2013

Orange Chicken Vegetable Stir-Fry

Instead of ordering take-out, give this recipe a try. It is really quick to make if you prep the vegetables ahead of time. I served this stir-fry with brown rice. Delicious!

2 TBS canola oil, divided
1 lb. boneless, skinless, chicken breasts cut into 3/4-inch pieces
1 large carrot, sliced
1 small onion, cut into 3/4-inch squares
2 large red bell peppers, cut into 3/4-inch squares
2 cups broccoli florets

Orange Sauce:

1/2 cup water
1/3 cup light orange juice *
1/2 cup granulated no-calorie sweetener (like Splenda)*
2 TBS brown sugar
3 TBS rice vinegar
2 TBS reduced-sodium soy sauce
3 TBS lemon juice
1/ tsp ground ginger
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
2 TBS cornstarch

To make sauce, in a medium saucepan, whisk together the water, orange juice, sweetener (or honey), brown sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, lemon juice, ground ginger and pepper flakes. Place the pan over medium-high heat and bring to a low simmer.

In a small bowl, mix together 2 TBS of water and the cornstarch to create a slurry and whisk into the sauce. Bring the sauce to a low boil and cook for 1 minute, or until the sauce thickens and clears. Reduce the heat to low and allow to simmer.

To make the chicken, heat 1 TBS of the oil in a large fry pan (or wok) over medium-high heat. Add the chicken and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until well browned on all sides and the chicken is barely cooked though. Transfer the chicken to a bowl and cover.

Add the remaining 1 TBS of oil to the pan. Add the carrots and stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add the onion and peppers and stir-fry for 3-4 more minutes. Add the broccoli and cook for 1 minute.

Add the orange sauce and chicken to the wok, cover, and cook for 2-3 more minutes, or until the broccoli is crisp tender and chicken is thoroughly cooked.

* I prefer not to use artificial sweeteners when I cook.  So I used 1/3 cup + 2 TBS 100% orange juice and 1/4 c. + 2 TBS honey instead of Splenda. We thought it tasted delicious. 

Pea pods, celery, water chestnuts and almonds would be great additions to this stir-fry.

Source:  Eat What You Love - Marlene Koch

Servings:  6 (1 1/2 cup)


Sunday, June 2, 2013

Cucumber Salad

This cucumber salad is always a favorite at our house.  It is especially good made with cucumbers fresh out of the garden.    

2 large cucumbers or 4 small  (peeled)
1/4 - 1/2 tsp salt
Sour cream & Miracle Whip (or Mayo) - enough to coat cucumbers
onions, thinly sliced (or 2 TBS chives, chopped)
dill weed to taste
dash pepper
1 TBS vinegar
1 - 2 drops hot sauces, if desired

If you are using large cucumbers, cut them in half and scoop out the seeds. Slice. 
Sprinkle the salt onto the cucumber slices.  Chill for 30 minutes.  Pat dry.
Combine the remaining ingredients.  Add to the bowl of cucumbers.  Stir gently.

Garnish with additional dill weed or chopped chives.

Chill before serving.