All Posts In Healthy Recipes

Nuts About Almonds

by in Healthy Recipes, Healthy Tips, October 13, 2011

almonds
We’ve told you all about grains, legumes, herbs and seasonal produce. In this new series we’ll explore the nuts we’re crazy about —  let’s get cracking!

Almond Basics
Almonds originated in central Asia and their cultivation has been traced back to Biblical times. In ancient Egypt, almonds were left in King Tut’s tomb to keep him nourished in the afterlife. These crunchy goodies were brought over to the United States from Spain in 1700. Two hundred years later, the almond industry was booming in California.

Almonds are the seeds of a fruit tree that’s related to the rose family. They’re grown in California, Australia, the Mediterranean and South Africa. There are two main types of almonds: sweet and bitter. Sweet almonds have a delicate and slightly sweet flavor and are the variety that most folks eat. Bitter almonds contain a toxic chemical called hydrocyanic acid and can be lethal when eaten raw. The chemical is destroyed once it is heated and the almond is then safe to eat. Bitter almonds aren’t allowed to be sold in the United States, though processed bitter almonds are used in flavor extracts and liqueurs.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Pork Tenderloin 3 Ways

by in Healthy Recipes, October 11, 2011

pork tenderloin
Chicken, chicken, chicken. Is that all we think about during the week? Poor pork. Especially super-lean pork tenderloin. It’s probably the most underutilized piece of meat on the shelf. Pork tenderloin is a fabulous blank canvas that couldn’t be easier to work with. No slicing, dicing or butterflying. Roast the whole tenderloin and you’ve got a delectable dinner in less than 30 minutes. Nutrient-dense pork is an excellent source of thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B-6, phosphorus, and a good source of zinc and potassium. And check this out: pork tenderloin provides more vitamins and minerals than chicken and is as lean as skinless chicken breast. In fact, it actually meets the government guidelines for “extra lean.” And because the flavor of pork is mild, it works with spices from all over the globe. Check out my three favorite recipes for busy weeknight pork.

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Rosh Hashanah Side Dishes

by in Healthy Holidays, Healthy Recipes, September 27, 2011
jicama-orange salad
Food Network Magazine's Jicama-Orange Salad.

Scrambling to find creative sides for the Jewish New Year? Look no further. This collection includes fresh ideas and some lightened up classics.

Recipes To Try:

Have extra apples lying around after the holiday? Turn them into a delicious applesauce.

Hummus Three Ways

by in Healthy Recipes, September 11, 2011

pizza hummussour cream and onion hummusbuffalo wing hummus
Take your favorite fatty foods and turn them into a healthier snack: hummus. Chickpeas, tahini (a paste made from ground sesame seeds) lemon juice and a few seasonings are all you need to create delicious dips at home. Hummus is as easy to customize as it is to make. Try Food Network Magazine’s version of sour cream and onion chips, pizza and buffalo wings in hummus form — each serving (2 tablespoons) has less than 50 calories.

Try the recipes:

Pizza Hummus

Sour Cream and Onion Hummus

Buffalo Wing Hummus

In Season: Grapes

by in Healthy Recipes, In Season, September 9, 2011

grapes
Grapes are in season right now. Get them fresh off the vine and try some of our favorite ways to prepare them.

When, Where, & What?
Grapes (Vitis spp, Vitaceae) are edible berries grown in clusters on small shrubs or vines. They grow best in temperate zones such as Italy, France, Spain, Mexico and Chile. New world settlers found that grapes brought over from Europe didn’t survive the winter cold and were prone to fungal diseases. They developed the hybrid varieties found in America today. Today California is the largest producer of “table grapes” – the kind for snacking.

There are thousands of varieties of grapes. Some are grown for wine production while others are grown to be eaten as-is. Concord grapes are used to produce grape juice, jams and jellies. They’re blue in color, with a thick, chewy skin and contain seeds. They’re sold as table grapes along with other varieties like Interlaken, Lakemont, Einset Seedless and Venus. Muscat grapes are turned into raisins while Riesling grapes are used to produce wine. Dana found fun varieties when she scouted her local farmers market including Mars and Juniper grapes.

Grapes are typically round or oval, smooth skinned and juicy. Some varieties contain seeds while others are seedless. Some are “slip skin” where the skin can easily be removed while other varieties have skin that is tough to remove. Grapes are divided into categories by color: white or black (or red). White grapes range in color from pale yellow-green to light green, while black varieties range in color from light red to deep purple. In the U.S., peak season for grapes is August through October.

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Herb of the Month: Tarragon

by in Healthy Recipes, In Season, September 7, 2011

tarragon
Turned off by this green herb’s anise flavor? Don’t discount tarragon just yet. This delightfully fresh and fragrant herb will find its way into your culinary heart if you’re just willing to give it a chance.

Tarragon Basics
This under-appreciated herb is a staple in French cuisine. It made our list of Top Herbs for Healthy Cooking because it’s easy to grow (it will last all summer and through to the fall) and its feathery leaves are just as tasty frozen or dried as they are fresh. It certainly does have an element of anise flavor but the accompanying sweetness will make even the most devout licorice-hater swoon.

Nutrition Info
In a tablespoon of fresh tarragon, you’ll find about 5 calories. There are also all kinds of nutrients including iron, zinc, potassium, magnesium and vitamins A, C and B6.

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Labor Day Sides

by in Healthy Recipes, September 3, 2011
grilled summer squash
Grilled summer squash, from Food Network Magazine.

Celebrate the end of summer with these healthy sides — each has fewer than 250 calories per serving. Side dishes should add color, flavor, and a variety of nutrients to your meal. Take your pick from these scrumptious options.

Recipes To Try:

You Might Also Like:

Snacks with 200 Calories (or Fewer!)

by in Healthy Recipes, August 22, 2011
chips and salsa
A snack of baked tortilla chips and 1/4 cup of salsa has just 180 calories.

Having a snack attack? Forgo the last minute trip to the vending machine and be prepared when hunger strikes with these snacks with fewer than 200 calories each.

#1: Basic Edamame
Munch on baby soy beans packed with protein and hunger-fighting fiber.
Calories: 150

#2: Apple and Peanut Butter
Top a sliced apple with natural peanut butter for a smooth and crunchy combination. This snack is packed with heart-healthy unsaturated fat and the antioxidant vitamins E and C. Check out how your favorite brand did in our taste test.
Calories: 190

#3: Rainbow Fruit Skewers With Chocolate Dipped Strawberries
This snack consists of 2 fruit skewers plus 3 chocolate-dipped strawberries. What better way to get a healthy dose of antioxidants plus your chocolate fix!
Calories: 184

#4: Chips and Spicy Salsa
An ounce of baked tortilla chips (about 15) dipped in ¼ cup salsa will give you a boost of vitamin C and lycopene.
Calories: 180

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One-Ingredient Banana Ice Cream

by in Cookies & Other Desserts, Healthy Recipes, August 19, 2011
banana ice cream
One-ingredient banana "ice cream" and assorted toppings.

There’s been quite a buzz over this frozen treat, so we tried our hand at the one-ingredient wonder – homemade banana “ice cream.”

Go Bananas
Banana muffins and banana bread are classic go-to recipes for over-ripe bananas, but there are some cooler options. When you’ve got more bananas than you know what to do with, slice them into large pieces and place in freezer-safe bag in the freezer for at least 4 hours (overnight is better). These frozen fruit chunks make creamy and frothy smoothies and a surprisingly similar dairy-free alternative to ice cream.

One medium banana totals about 105 calories, 27 grams of carbohydrate, 3 grams of fiber and 1 gram of protein. You’ll also get healthy doses of vitamins C and B6 and potassium. Bananas are also free of fat and cholesterol.

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Brown-Bag Lunch Menus

by in Back to School, Healthy Recipes, August 17, 2011
pasta salad Ellie Krieger’s Rainbows and Butterflies Pasta Salad, part of a well-balanced lunch.

To get you off to the right start with our September Brown-Bag Challenge, we’ve put together a one-week menu of quick, tasty and nutritious lunches. To make things even easier, pre-plan your meals, make a shopping list and have all ingredients ready-to-go. Are you up for the challenge?

Monday: Tuna Pockets

  • Stuff tuna salad into a large whole wheat pita
  • 1 medium banana
  • Sparkling water

Tuesday: Pasta Salad