Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Almond-Crusted Salmon

I agree with Cooking Light that the effect of this crusting blend on the salmon is almost buttery....it was really tasty.  As you can see in my not-so-perfect photo, the fishmonger gave me salmon filets in very uneven thicknesses, so the cooking wasn't 100% even but it still tasted good.  I served mine with basmati rice and broccoli.


Recipe Notes
Cooking time per the recipe is 15 minutes.  Mine was almost overdone on the thin end after 12 minutes.  I would recommend just watching your oven beginning at 10 minutes.

Nutritional Information (per serving - serves 4)
332 calories - 16.7 g. fat - 38.2 g. protein - 5.4 g. carbs - 1.5 g. fiber

  • 1/4 c. almond meal
  • 1/4 c. panko breadcrumbs
  • 1/4 tsp. ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • Four 6-oz. salmon filets
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • Salt & pepper
  • Cooking spray
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

1.  Preheat oven to 500 degrees.
2.  Combine almond meal, panko, coriander, and cumin in a bowl and set aside.
3.  Brush tops and sides of salmon filets with lemon juice.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
4.  One at a time, dredge salmon filets in almond meal mixture.  Place skin-side down on a broiler pan coated with cooking spray. 
5.  Sprinkle any remaining crumb mixture evenly over fish, pressing gently to adhere. 
6.  Bake at 500 degrees for 15 minutes (or until fish is done).
7.  Serve with lemon wedges.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Asparagus & Lemon Risotto

I decided to try this Martha Stewart recipe after seeing it in a recent issue of the magazine.  It looked healthy and chock full of veggies - and it was!  Even Corey liked this recipe, and I was dubious that he would like it given the lack of meat and the abundance of vegetables. 

The trick to risotto is that it is not hard, it is just time-consuming.  LOTS of time spent stirring the arborio rice and the broth.  But if you have the time, risotto really is an easy dinner.  I've got another, more plain recipe for risotto that I posted here.


Recipe Notes
The original Martha Stewart version of this recipe called for 6 c. vegetable broth, or about 3 cans.  I gave up after 4 c. (two cans) and the risotto turned out great.  I also eliminated the olive oil from the recipe to reduce the fat and calorie content, and it still tasted really good.

I ran this through the Points tracker on Weight Watchers, and it came back as an 11 Point entree.  However, that is based on a huge portion, because the recipe serves 4.  If you make this a recipe that serves 6 (which was a more manageable portion for me), then the Points value is only 7.

  • 6 c. vegetable stock (3 cans)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 c. Arborio rice
  • 1/2 c. dry white wine
  • 1 bunch of asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-in. lengths
  • 1 c. thawed frozen peas
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon zest
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 1 c. chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1/2 c. shredded Parmesan, plus more for serving
  • Salt and pepper to taste
1.  Coat a saucepan with cooking spray.  Saute onion, stirring frequently, until soft (6-7 minutes).
2.  Add rice and cook, stirring until edges are translucent. 
3.  Add wine and cook, stirring, until evaporated.
4.  Add vegetable stock, 1/2 c. at a time, stirring until almost absorbed.  Continue adding 1/2 c. stock in this manner until liquid is creamy and rice is al dente.  I only added 4 c. of the stock.
5.  Add asparagus with the last addition on stock, followed by the thawed frozen peas one minute before risotto is done.
6.  Remove from heat and stir in lemon zest and juice, parsley, and Parmesan cheese.
7.  Season with salt and pepper.  Garnish with additional cheese and/or lemon zest and serve immediately.

Friday, February 8, 2013


I have tweaked and tweaked this recipe from one that I found in a magazine years ago.  I have now gotten to the point that I just wing it, so feel free to add more or less based on your own personal taste.  This would be a very virtuous Valentine's Day appetizer, and the colors are right.  This accompanies an Italian dinner, steak dinner, chicken dinner, etc. very nicely.


Recipe Notes
Be sure that you buy a baguette no more than a day before you plan to make this appetizer.  It will get too hard, crunchy, and stale to work with otherwise.

  • One large beefsteak or heirloom tomato, small dice
  • One medium cucumber, small dice
  • Healthy handful of basil, chiffonade-cut
  • 1/4-1/2 small red onion, minced
  • Red wine vinegar
  • Olive oil
  • French baguette, sliced thin
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • Shredded parmesan cheese
1.  Combine tomato, cucumber, basil, red onion, red wine vinegar (to taste), and olive oil (to taste - this should be a very small amount).  Season with salt and pepper.
2.  Turn on broiler in the oven (low broil).  Arrange baguette slices on a jelly roll pan or cookie sheet. 
3.  Using juices from the bottom of the bruschetta topping bowl, paint juices over the top of the baguette slices.
4.  Broil baguette slices until just browning.  Remove from oven, top with vegetable mixture, sprinkle with parmesan cheese, and possibly add more salt and pepper if desired.
5.  Serve immediately.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Asian Turkey Cabbage Cups

These were quick and easy.  I served them with a rice noodle salad that Cooking Light also suggested.  I personally am not a fan of cabbage, so I replaced the cabbage with Boston bibb lettuce.  This photo does not show the crushed peanuts on top, but they do add to the dish, so I recommend including that garnish at the end.  I have another version of Turkey Lettuce Wraps that I had previously posted - click the preceding link for a second alternative if you'd like.


Recipe Notes
As mentioned above, I replaced the Napa cabbage leaves with Boston bibb lettuce based on personal preference.

Nutritional Information (per serving - serves 4)
267 calories - 13.6 g. fat - 30.3 g. protein - 1.4 g. fiber - 7.6 g. carbs

  • 1 tsp. grated (or minced) peeled fresh ginger
  • 1.25 lbs. ground turkey (I used 93% lean)
  • 1/2 c. thinly-sliced green onions
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 1-1/2 tbsp. fish sauce
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 tsp. dark sesame oil
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped
  • 12 large Napa cabbage leaves (or substitute Boston bibb)
  • 1/4 c. chopped salted dry-roasted peanuts
1.  Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add ginger and turkey to pan, cook until done.
2.  Drain turkey mixture and place in a large bowl.
3.  Add green onions, brown sugar, cilantro, mint, lime juice, fish sauce, oils, and jalapeno.  Toss well.
4.  Spoon 1/3 c. turkey mixture into each leaf.  Top with peanuts and serve.

Individual Lemon Pudding Cakes

These were quick to assemble and not too bad for you....227 calories and 6 Weight Watchers Points Plus if you follow that program.  Once baked, the dish has a lemon pudding layer on the bottom and a lemon cake layer on the top.  It's nice and tart/sweet for those who like that type of flavor combination.  This recipe was taken from Real Simple.


Recipe Notes
For my water bath, I used a 9x13 glass casserole dish and tap water from the sink....it doesn't have to be anything fancy.  For the lemon zest, if you don't have a Microplane grater, I would recommend investing the $15 or so to buy one.  It makes great zest.

Nutritional Information (per serving - serves 6)
227 calories - 8 g. fat - 5 g. protein - 36 g. carbs - 0 g. fiber

  • 3/4 c. granulated sugar
  • 1/3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 3 large eggs, separated
  • 2 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 c. whole milk (I used 2% milk)
  • 1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/3 c. fresh lemon juice (approx. 2 medium to large lemons)
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 3 tsp. turbinado sugar or other coarse sugar
1.  Heat oven to 350 degrees.  Place ramekins in a 9x13 glass baking dish or roasting pan.
2.  In a medium bowl, combine sugar, flour, egg yolks, butter, milk, lemon zest, and lemon juice.
3.  In a separate bowl, beat egg whites and salt with an electric mixer until soft peaks form.
4.  Fold egg whites into pudding mixture and pour into ramekins.  Sprinkle the tops with turbinado sugar.
5.  Add just enough water to the larger dish to reach halfway up the ramekins.  The recipe suggests using hot water.  I just used tap water out of the sink and it worked fine.
6.  Bake until tops are golden brown, or approximately 40-45 minutes.  Enjoy warm or room temp.

Walnut & Rosemary Oven Fried Chicken - Follow Up

I posted the recipe for Walnut Rosemary Oven Fried Chicken earlier this month - here is the photo that my blogging program wouldn't let me post!  Enjoy!