Friday, February 4, 2011

How to Keep Sane During a Northeast Winter - Part 2 - Clean Eating

Cooking Clean and Healthy Recipes
Cooking healthy especially during the winter we have had is important. It helps keep the body/mind in balance in my opinion. I recently purchased a few cookbooks - Barefoot Contessa "How Easy is This", Clean Food by Terry Walters and The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. Let me preface this, I am not vegan, but I do like to eat clean and like the way my body feels when I take a break - as you have seen on my detoxes I do here and there.

I think that everyone is entitled to their own views and that we should all respect each other on that. I have worked in the agricultural and animal health industry for years and have learned a lot about the industry that caused me to have my own opinions on what gets shown in the media, what is the reality and what is not, but I won't get into that here.

So you might say, for not being a pro-PETA girl, it's kind of funny that I bought Alicia Silverstone's book....maybe it was because Clueless was one of my favorite chick flick or maybe the recipes, I am not sure but let's just say my thoughts went from "intrigued" when I opened the book to "bored" by the first half of the book that consisted of her viewpoints and then "interested" in her recipes.

I highly suggest all three books. They were worth it for the recipes - I have already made a bunch of them!

Here are recipes of some of my favorite meals I've made during my winter season...

Blood Orange Balsamic Salad

There were two key elements to this salad:
  1. Goat cheese and blood oranges to spring mix, cucumbers, and grape tomatoes.
  2. AGED balsamic and a good extra virgin olive oil.

Baked Sundried Tomato Chicken Breasts with Whole Grain Spaghetti.

Chicken breasts
Sun dried tomato panko crusts at Whole Foods
Egg whites
Pesto (prepared unless you want to make homemade)
Sundried tomatoes
fresh mozzarello (mini balls)
Whole-grain spaghetti
1/4 cup of ricotta cheese (part skim)
A few swirls of olive oil
Red pepper, parsely seasoning
8 garlic cloves
Pecorino Romano cheese

Pre-heat the oven to 370 degrees. Bread the chicken breasts using egg whites and then the panko crusts. Place in a casserole dish and bake for 20 min.
Take out of the oven and add a dollop of pesto on each piece, sundried tomato and some mozzarella. Bake for an additional 15 min.

In the meantime boil salted water and make pasta al dente. Saute seasoning, garlic and olive oil. Save 1 cup of pasta water, add ricotta cheese and sauteed garlic and olive oil. Add pecorino romano cheese. This isn't calorie free but has lots of good stuff....
Halibut Veggie Tacos

1 Halibut steak
1 zucchini chopped
5 chopped portabellos
Taco seasoning
Tomato paste
5 cloves of garlic
1 onion chopped
Cilantro (if not recalled..)
Goat Cheese

Brush olive oil, salt and pepper on halibut steak. Bake halibut to flakes apart. I usually bake at 375 for about 20 min.
Sautee Veggies.
Use a low-carb whole wheat tortillas (I use Trader Joe's) and sprinkle hot sauce, cilantro and goat cheese.

Kale and Aduki Beans

Steam kale to a bright green. Saute garlic, onions, diced tomatoes and aduki beans. Add Kale and cook for 5 more minutes.
Serve with tilapia.

Pecan Cranberry Coconut Balls

1.5 cups of chopped pecans
1 cup of dried cranberries
1/2 cup of almond butter (Trader Joe's with flax seed - no sugar added)
1/2 cup of maple syrup (I happened to have rum-infused maple syrup)
Unsweetened chopped coconut

Place in a food processor until it is somewhat smooth.

Make into teaspoon size balls and roll in unsweetened coconut. Makes about 18.

See you all later for Part 3 - the long awaited MissFancyPants' Winter Beer List - until then

Rock on!

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