Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Roasted Cauliflower

I don't know about you, but we always struggle to eat vegetables and to get our children to eat vegetables. My old go to was the steamable bags of cauliflower and broccoli that were quick and easy, but honestly didn't have ANY flavor. Now I still will sometimes buy the pre-cut up bags if I am looking for a short cut from cutting up a head of cauliflower, but I no longer steam them. It is so easy to roast cauliflower and broccoli and gives them more texture and flavor. No one in my family, including my husband liked steamed cauliflower. However, we were at the local farmers market and my 3year old picked out a head of purple cauliflower because well it was purple. I cut it into florets, tossed it with olive oil, kosher salt and pepper and roasted and wouldn't you believe the entire family who swore they didn't like cauliflower devoured the entire thing! As I mentioned, this also works well with broccoli. On the rare chance there are any leftovers, my daughter will enjoy it cold for lunch the next day too. Hope you and your family enjoy this as much as mine does!

Roasted Cauliflower
1 head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cut into bite-size florets
olive oil
kosher salt
fresh ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Toss the cauliflower with the olive oil, and put on a baking sheet; sprinkle with the salt and pepper and toss again. Roast until golden and tender, about 20 minutes.
Transfer to a serving bowl and serve.

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Monday, May 22, 2017

Lemon Chicken And Spaghetti Squash

When looking on my Facebook feed, it mainly consists of food and children's blogs that I follow for ideas to inspire me in the two main aspects of my life these days. We are always trying to find new recipes and ways to encourage our toddlers to eat vegetables. This was a win for everyone in the family. The lemon sauce brightens and ties everything together and is a flavor that my husband and one daughter love.
Lemon Chicken And Spaghetti Squash
Adapted from Goodful
Serves: 4

1 spaghetti squash
Olive oil
Sea salt, to taste
Black pepper, to taste
2 chicken breast, cut into 1-2 inch pieces
For the sauce:
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon sea salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
½ lemon, juiced
1 cup chicken broth
8 ounces baby spinach

1. Preheat oven to 375˚F
2. Poke several holes vertically into the spaghetti squash. Microwave on high for 5 minutes to soften and make it easier to cut the squash in half.
3. Cut squash in half along the holes. Remove seeds with a spoon. Drizzle squash with olive oil, and season with salt and pepper.
4. Place squash upside down on baking tray and bake for 40 minutes until soft. Let cool.
5. Using a skillet, cook the chicken breast on medium-high heat with a little olive oil for 6-8 minutes until the chicken is golden brown and cooked through. Remove chicken from the pan and set aside.
6. Sauté onion for a few minutes. Add garlic and cook for a minute. Add tomatoes and cook for a couple minutes. Cook until onions are translucent.
7. Add lemon juice and chicken broth, and cook until the liquid partially reduces, about 20 minutes. Add chicken and cook for 2 minutes. Add spinach and cook for 2 minutes.
8. Using a fork, shred the inside of the squash.
9. Pour sauce over the squash. Serve immediately.

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Thursday, April 20, 2017

Baked Zucchini Fries

Zucchini is one of those vegetables I buy to throw on the grill with olive oil, salt and pepper but no one really loves it. When I saw this recipe I couldn't wait to try a new way to enjoy zucchini because honestly, who doesn't love fries? These were crispy on the outside and soft on the inside and tasted so delicious we could eat an entire zucchini per person! They were so good I made them twice in one week and I am not normally a zucchini lover. It's also a great way to get little kids to eat some vegetables.

Baked Zucchini Fries
Source: Skinnytaste
Serves 4

cooking spray
2 medium zucchinis, ends trimmed
2 large egg whites, beaten

3/4 tsp kosher salt
fresh black pepper, to taste

1 tsp Italian seasoning
1 1/2 Tbsp all purpose flour
3/4 cup panko bread crumbs

Preheat oven to 425ºF. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. In a small bowl, mix together Italian seasoning, flour and salt. Place bread crumbs in another small bowl.
Slice each zucchini in half lengthwise and then each half into 2 pieces widthwise. Next slice each zucchini chunk into 4 fries. Dredge a zucchini fry in flour mixture and then dip into egg whites; dredge in bread crumbs. Place coated zucchini on prepared baking sheet and repeat with remaining ingredients; liberally coat with cooking spray. 

Roast, turning once, until desired crispness, about 12 minutes. Yields about 8 fries per serving.

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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Skinny Mini Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins

Fall is here which means everything has pumpkin in it! We are having a "cold front" in Florida so what better time than now to jump on the pumpkin bandwagon. These mini muffins are the perfect snack and even my toddler loves to take them to school for snack. The pumpkin keeps them nice and moist inside. You can make these into regular sized muffins and you should get around 14 larger muffins. Hope you enjoy these as much as we do!

Skinny Mini Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins
Source: Skinnytaste
Servings: 24 mini muffins

1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
3/4 cups unbleached all purpose flour
3/4 cup raw sugar
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 3/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)
2 tbsp virgin coconut oil (or canola)
2 large egg whites
2 tsp vanilla extract
baking spray
2/3 cup mini chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a mini muffin tin with paper liners and lightly spray liners with oil for easy removal.

In a medium bowl, combine flours, sugar, baking soda, pumpkin spice, cinnamon, and salt with a wire whisk. Set aside.

In a large bowl mix pumpkin puree, oil, egg whites and vanilla; beat at medium speed until thick. Scrape down sides of the bowl. Add flour mixture to the wet mixture, then blend at low speed until combined; do not over mix. Fold in chocolate chips.

Pour batter into prepared muffin tin and bake on the center rack for 22 to 24 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let them cool at least 15 minutes before serving.

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Sunday, August 7, 2016

Baked French Toast Muffins

Breakfast is still my favorite meal of the day, except dessert of course, so it's fun to try new recipes. We rarely have french toast at home, but whenever we go out for breakfast it's something I usually order. This weekend we had family over to celebrate my mother-in-law's special birthday and I wanted to make something a little bit different as a treat. These french toast muffins didn't disappoint.

As a host, it is always nice to have dishes that can be prepared the night before so there is one less thing to worry about the day of your event. I mixed up the bread and filled the muffin tins the night before so that all I had to do in the morning was make the stresuel topping and put them in the oven. The tops had a sweet crunch while the french toast stayed nice and moist. I substituted Almond milk for a dairy allergy and no one noticed. Plus, you can enjoy the flavors of french toast without standing over a griddle all morning!

Baked French Toast Muffins
Source: Two Peas & Their Pod
Yields: 12

1 loaf French bread, cut or torn into 1/2 inch cubes (about 12 cups of bread)
2 1/2 cups milk
6 large eggs
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

For the Cinnamon Streusel Topping:
1/4 cup cold butter
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt

1. In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon.

2. Grease a 12 cup muffin tin. Add about 1 cup of bread cubes to each muffin cup. Carefully pour egg and milk mixture evenly over each muffin tin. You may need to press down on the bread cubes after you pour a little mixture and then pour more. Pour slowly or you will have a mess. Or you can combine everything in a large bowl and then fill the muffin cups. Cover the muffins with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or up to overnight.

3. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. To make the cinnamon streusel, in a small bowl, combine butter, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt. Mix together with your hands, until you have a crumbly mixture. Remove the muffins from the refrigerator and sprinkle the muffins evenly with the streusel topping.

4. Bake for 25 minutes or until tops are golden brown. Let muffins cool for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and serve with butter and maple syrup, if desired.

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Monday, April 25, 2016

Rolo pretzel treats

Be forewarned that these are addicting since they are both salty and sweet and the perfect bite size to be popped in your mouth. They are simple to make and can be themed for any holiday based on the color m&m's you use. Perfect for your next get together.

Rolo Pretzel Treats
Yield: about 45 candies

1 package (11 oz.) Rolo candy, unwrapped
small pretzels
M&M candies


Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Place pretzels in single layer on parchment lined cookie sheet. Place one Rolo on each pretzel.

Bake 3-5 minutes or until caramel begins to soften, but not melt. Remove cookie sheet from oven and immediately press an M&M into the top of the Rolo, pushing down so the Rolo fills the pretzel. Let cool completely.

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Monday, April 18, 2016

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Muffins

One of the things I dreamt about was being able to cook with my child. Now that day is here and my daughter loves to "help" cook. She pulled up a chair and helped put the muffin liners in the tin and mix all of the dry ingredients into the bowl. As she anxiously watched them bake in the oven, it was all I could do to let them cool down before she had to taste her hard work. They are truly kid and mother tested and approved. These are full of oatmeal to keep you full and not too sweet. They are also perfect to be frozen and defrosted on busy mornings.

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Muffins
Source: Bella 
Servings: 12-14

1 ¼ cup old-fashioned oats
1 cup whole wheat flour
¾ cup packed brown sugar
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix the first six ingredients together in a bowl. In another bowl (or stand mixer), beat the eggs, milk, oil and vanilla. Stir into the dry ingredients until moistened.

Grease muffin pan and fill each cup till its 2/3 full. Bake at 400° for 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick or fork inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack.

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