Archive for April, 2015

CHICKEN AND ASPARAGUS STIR-FRY

This is a very simple stir-fry with LOTS of great flavors and insanely easy!

ingredients  (serves 3-4) Chicken-and-Asparagus-Stir-Fry-1

2 T soy sauce

2 T honey

2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized pieces (about 1-inch)

1 T peanut oil

1 bunch asparagus, cut into bite-sized pieces

4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

2 scallions, chopped

2 t toasted sesame oil

1 t toasted sesame seeds

directions

In a small bowl or in a ziplock bag, combine the soy sauce and honey. Add the chicken, and stir to coat. Set in the refrigerator until ready.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat. Add the asparagus, and sauté until cooked, about 3-4 minutes. Remove the asparagus with a slotted spoon, and set aside.

Remove the chicken from the marinade, and add it to the skillet. (Keep the marinade.) Sauté the chicken until nearly cooked through (with the insides still slightly pink), about 5 minutes. Then add the garlic, scallions, and the reserved marinade to the pan. Sauté for an additional 2 minutes until the chicken is cooked and the garlic is fragrant. Add the asparagus back into the skillet/wok and stir to combine.

Remove from the heat and stir in the sesame oil. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Serve immediately with brown rice.

(Adapted from a recipe found on http://www.gimmesomeoven.com)

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BUTTER LETTUCE, ASPARAGUS, AND HAZELNUT SALAD

Most of the time when I make salads, I use dark greens like arugula, spinach and kale. I figured I would try something different and loved this salad! I also enjoyed Cooking Light’s explanation as to why the salad should be dressed a certain way. Give it a try!!!

ingredients butter-lettuce-asparagus-hazelnut-salad-ck

1 ½ tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 ½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint

1 teaspoon honey

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

5 cups torn butter lettuce

1 cup thinly diagonally sliced asparagus

¼ cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted

2 tablespoons shaved pecorino Romano cheese

¼ teaspoon flake salt (such as Maldon)

directions

Combine the juice, oil, mint, honey, and pepper in a bowl, stirring with a whisk.

Divide the butter lettuce evenly among 4 plates. Top each serving with ¼ cup asparagus, 1 tablespoon hazelnuts, and 1 ½ teaspoons cheese. Drizzle the vinaigrette evenly over the salads. Sprinkle evenly with salt.

NOTE: Butter lettuce, also called Boston or Bibb lettuce, is delicate; it can bruise and wilt as easily as fresh herbs. Instead of tossing together in a bowl, arrange the lettuce on individual plates before adding other elements. A tip we learned from salt guru Mark Bitterman: Stirring salt into the vinaigrette will wilt lettuces faster. Instead, finish with a sprinkling of flake salt, such as Maldon–the big flakes mimic the lettuce’s crisp texture. Late spring yields the most flavorful, tender asparagus; this salad is a great place to use very thin stalks.

(Adapted from a recipe found in Cooking Light, May, 2015)

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SHRIMP AND AVOCADO SALAD

This salad is light, filled with nutrients and PERFECT for Spring!!!!

ingredients (serves 4)  IMG_2229

2 T chopped red onion

1 ½ T lime juice

1 ½ T extra-virgin olive oil

2 T chopped cilantro, divided

¼ t salt

¼ t freshly ground pepper

4-ounces peeled and deveined boiled shrimp, cut into small pieces

1 medium avocado, diced

4-6 cups mixed greens

directions

Combine the red onion, lime juice, olive oil, 1 tablespoon of cilantro, salt and pepper in a medium bowl and whisk. Add the shrimp and avocado and toss. Divide the mixed greens among 4 plates. Arrange the shrimp mixture over the greens; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of cilantro and serve.

(Adapted from a recipe found in Cooking Light, March 2015)

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I’M SCRATCHING MY HEAD!

When it comes to diet, exercise and lifestyle, here are ten things that make NO sense to me: 85a80ce7c53efb60fd6097879907a83e

  • Eating “healthy food” that you can’t stand but you eat it anyway because it’s low calorie and/or healthy.
  • Believing that there is ONE NUTRITION PLAN that works for everyone.
  • Doing exercise that you HATE.
  • Believing that chronic stress will not eventually bite you in the ass.
  • Going on a very low-calorie diet to lose weight quickly.
  • Drinking your calories.
  • Paying too much attention to electronic devices instead of listening to your body.
  • Going to a nutritionist and following his/her plan that you don’t like.
  • Going to a personal trainer who doesn’t challenge you.
  • Thinking that taking care of everyone else, but you, will have a good outcome.

All of these will derail any chance of losing weight and being healthy.

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BRAISED FENNEL WITH PARMESAN BREADCRUMBS

If you never tried cooked fennel, give this recipe a try. Not only is it delicious, but fennel is a great source of fiber, Vitamin C, folate and potassium. Great flavors in this one!!!

ingredients IMG_2212

3 medium fennel bulbs, trimmed and halved lengthwise

3 t butter, divided

½ cup dry white wine

½ cup chicken broth

¼ t salt

¼ t freshly ground pepper

4 thyme sprigs

¼ cup fresh breadcrumbs

1 T chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

2 T grated Parmesan cheese

directions

Cut each fennel half into 3-4 wedges. Melt 2 teaspoons of butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the fennel; cook for about 7 minutes or until browned, stirring occasionally. Add the wine, chicken broth, salt, pepper, and thyme springs. Bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until tender. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, uncovered, for about 1 minute more or until the liquid is slightly thickened. Remove the thyme springs from the pan and discard.

Melt the remaining 1 teaspoon of butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs and cook for about 3 minutes or until browned, stirring frequently. Remove the pan from the heat; stir in the parsley and the cheese. Arrange the fennel wedges on a platter and sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture evenly over the fennel.

(Adapted form a recipe found in Cooking Light, March, 2015)

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