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Letting the juices of life (or food) drip from my chin!


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Kung Pao Chicken Zoodles for 2

IMG_0076Pinterest is one of those sites that can suck you in and suddenly you have found that hours have passed.  I found this recipe at skinnytaste. I did not have the hoisin sauce that the recipe called for and used the same amount of oyster sauce in its place.  It was still very good.  I will be making this again.  I am trying to curb how much pasta I eat and the spiralized zucchini give me the satisfaction of having “noodles” without the guilt!  My 12 year old son also enjoyed it, though he thought it was a little spicy.

Kung Pao Chicken Zoodles for 2

adapted from skinnytaste.com

Ingredients

  • 2 medium zucchini, washed, trimmed of the edges and spiralized (cut into 6 inch strips to make it easier to eat)
  • 1 tsp grapeseed oil (or canola)
  • 6 oz boneless skinless chicken breast halves, trimmed of fat and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
  • freshly ground pepper and sea salt (to season the chicken)
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 tsp freshly ground ginger
  • 1/2 cup roasted dry peanuts
  • 2 Tbsp thinly sliced scallions

For the sauce:

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp hoisin sauce (or oyster sauce)
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp water
  • 1/2 – 1 Tbsp Sambal Oelek Red chili paste
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tsp cornstarch

Instructions:

Spiralize the zucchini into noodles following the directions on the spiralizer.

Season the diced chicken with salt and pepper.  Heat a pan over medium high heat and add 1 tsp of grapeseed or canola oil. Cook the chicken stirring from time to time, until it is cooked through.  Remove the chicken to a bowl.

Combine the sauce ingredients together and stir to combine.

Add the sesame oil to the pan, reduce heat to medium, and add the garlic and ginger and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Add the bell peppers and cook for two more minutes. Next, add the zucchini noodles and saute for 2 minutes longer.  Add the sauce to the zucchini and toss to coat.  Add the chicken back into the stir fry.  Sprinkle with peanuts and scallions and divide into two large bowls.

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Mediterranean Chopped Salad

IMG_8936Here is another lovely salad that I made.  I found this recipe in my America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook on page 74.  I love most of the recipes that I have tried from America’s Test Kitchen.  They are on TV on PBS as well.

Mediterranean Chopped Salad

adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Healthy Family Cookbook pg 74

Serves 6  Calories: 180/serving

Ingredients:

Salad:

  • 10 oz cherry tomatoes, cut in half (I love Cherub brand cherry tomatoes)
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into pieces
  • 1 (15 oz) can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup pitted  kalamata olives, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup minced red onion
  • 1 head red leaf lettuce, washed, dried, and chopped into bite size pieces
  • 3/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped

Dressing:

  • 3 Tbsp olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Combine the salad ingredients in a large salad bowl.

Combine the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine.  Pour over the salad and gently toss the salad.

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“Thai” Beef Salad Wraps

IMG_8882So I joined the April Health Challenge (www.meltdownchallenge.com), and in an effort to find new low calorie meals I hit one of my cookbooks in my expansive cookbook collection.  This recipe is adapted from Cooking Light.  Don’t let the “Thai” scare you off – this recipe is pretty mild in my opinion.  If you do not like much spice, leave out the red pepper flakes.  I sweetened the sauce a little, but the wrap was delicious! I cooked twice as much flank steak as the recipe called for, so I have enough to add some protein to some other salads this week. Win win!  If you want to eliminate gluten, eat it as a lettuce wrap or a steak salad!

Thai Beef Salad Wrap (really not very spicy.. not sure how Thai it is)

Yield: 6 wraps approximately 399 calories per serving

adapted from All-New Complete Cooking Light Cookbook (2006 Oxmoor House) p 444

  • 1 lb flank steak, trimmed of fat
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper

Cooking spray

Vegetable Filling:

  • 1 cup peeled cucumber, diced
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1/4 cup minced shallots
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh mint
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh basil
  • 1 Tbsp chopped fresh cilantro

Sauce:

  • 2 (or 3) Tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp fresh lime juice (or lemon juice works fine too)
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper

Additional ingredients:

  • 12 leaves red leaf lettuce
  • 6 (10 inch) whole wheat flour tortillas

Instructions:

Season your flank steak with salt and pepper on both sides.  Prepare the grill with cooking spray. Grill the flank steak on high for 4 minutes each side.  Remove from grill.  Allow to rest 5 minutes, while you prep the remaining ingredients.

Combine the diced cucumber, cherry tomatoes, shallots, mint, basil and fresh cilantro in a medium sized bowl (you will add the steak to this mixture)

Prepare the sauce: Combine the 2 Tbsp of brown sugar, soy sauce, lime (or lemon) juice, crushed red pepper flakes, and mix to combine.  Taste the sauce and adjust the sugar if you desire a little sweeter sauce (I added about 1 Tbsp of additional brown sugar).

Slice the rested flank steak into thin strips, cutting against the grain.  Add the steak to the cucumber mixture. Drizzle the sauce over the steak and cucumber mixture.

In the microwave, heat up the flour tortillas between pieces of damp paper towels for about 20 seconds.

Line each tortilla with 2 leaves of lettuce.  Spoon 2/3 cup of steak mixture down the center of the tortilla and wrap like a burrito (start at the bottom folding up, then fold the sides over and secure with a toothpick if you like (or eat it immediately)

Notes: if you wish to eliminate gluten you could easily serve this on lettuce as a salad.

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Gorgonzola Veggie Dip

IMG_8873I like Gorgonzola cheese – and found this dip recipe in a Health Magazine.  I read the ingredients and thought to myself that I should really try making a dip like this one.  It is delicious with fresh bell peppers, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, celery or carrot sticks.  The beauty is: only 130 calories per 1/4 cup serving.  You could easily use fresh herbs to this dip instead of dried.  This dip is a winner in my book.

Gorgonzola Veggie Dip

Yields 8 (1/4 cup servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 (8 oz) container Philadelphia reduced fat garden vegetable cream cheese
  • 1 cup low fat sour cream
  • 4 oz crumbled Gorgonzola cheese (about 1 cup)
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp dry dill weed
  • 1 tsp freeze dried chives

Instructions:

Microwave the cream cheese for about 30 seconds on high (be sure to remove the lid and foil seal first).  Combine all the ingredients together and stir with a rubber spatula until it is combined.

Serve 1/4 cup of Gorgonzola Veggie Dip with fresh veggies for dipping.

Approximately 130 calories per serving of dip.

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