Tag: robin miller

Parmesan Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Smoked Paprika

by in Robin's Healthy Take, September 17, 2012

brussels sproutsYou must admit, Brussels sprouts are cute. They resemble baby cabbages and their flavor is reminiscent of their  popular cousin, broccoli. But they’re often snubbed. Why? My guess is, Brussels sprout-haters have, at some point, eaten them when they weren’t cooked correctly. Brussels sprouts taste horrible when they’re over-cooked. When cooked properly, the sprouts are bright green, fork-tender and wonderful. Especially the way I make them, roasted with Parmesan cheese and smoked paprika. Read on…

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Frittata Fabulous

by in Robin's Healthy Take, March 3, 2012
frittata
Artichoke Frittata With Parmesan

As a kid, I always knew when my mom cleaned out the fridge because we had a frittata for dinner. It’s the best way to empty your veggie and deli drawers while making a fabulous meal. A frittata is the Italian version of an omelet, but it’s heartier and easier to make. The egg mixture (spruced up with ingredients that vary from vegetables to meats to cheeses) is cooked in a heavy skillet until almost firm (not runny like an omelet, and not folded either) and then finished under the broiler (to cook the top). Since you’re working with eggs, your recipe options are wildly versatile. My frittata is loaded with artichokes and parmesan cheese (like the classic dip, only baked with eggs). It’s lighter than normal because I replaced 1 egg with 2 egg whites and used nonfat milk instead of heavy cream or half & half. I also skipped the step of sautéing onions in oil before adding the egg mixture in order to cut fat and simplify the recipe. This dish is a boiler plate recipe for all your future frittata creations. To change up the veggies, instead of artichokes, substitute 1 cup of sautéed or steamed vegetables like zucchini, asparagus, broccoli or spinach.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Cold Days, Hot Soups

by in Robin's Healthy Take, February 6, 2012
onion soup
Warm right up with caramelized onion soup, topped with cheesy bread.

I realize it’s doesn’t get really cold in the desert (where I live), but I’m an east coast native, so I know how bone-chilling February can get. Only two things warm me up when I’m chilled to the core: a hot bath and hot soup. This week, I’m sharing three of my favorite hot soups for cold days. The onion soup is my all-time favorite (it has been, since I was like 7). When you make it, take the time to really caramelize the onions until they’re deep golden brown, like they’ve been dipped in caramel. And, use oven-proof soup bowls so you can melt the cheese under the broiler.  For the butternut squash soup, the key is roasting the squash because it caramelizes the flesh and makes it tender and sweet. I also add cumin and ginger before roasting to bring out the warm smokiness of the spices.  The Tuscan soup is a hearty blend of ham, beans, kale and sage. I used white beans, but any bean variety will work. Serve with a wedge of toasted Italian bread with olive oil and you’ll be transported to Italy in under 30 minutes.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Spice it Up

by in Robin's Healthy Take, December 5, 2011

spices

Ever wonder what to do with those leftover spices in your spice rack? Things you bought for one recipe and haven’t used since? I’m talking about things like Chinese 5-spice, cardamom, star anise, coriander, marjoram, garam masala, tarragon and other unique, rarely used spices (rarely used in everyday American cooking, that is). I can help you clean out your pantry while savoring delicious meals. First, I’ve given you flavor profiles and tips for using several spices. Then, I created amazing dishes using Chinese 5-Spice and Cardamom. Check it out.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: DIY Tacos

by in Robin's Healthy Take, November 22, 2011

beef tacos

If you’re like me, you’ve got turkey coming out of your gills. It’s time for something completely different before we delve back in to prepping and enjoying the next round of holiday meals. Tacos are the ultimate mid-week treat because they come together fast, you control flavor and calorie/fat content and they create an instant “party” feel in the house. Check out three awesome and unique taco fillings designed to spice up your week. Once the protein portion of the taco is ready, the condiments are up to you (and I’ve provided a generous amount of ideas). You can also pick the type of taco shell you want: crunchy corn, soft corn or soft flour tortillas (preferably whole wheat).

Smoky Flat Iron Steak Tacos

You can marinate the steak in the Worcestershire mixture for up to 24 hours before cooking (keep refrigerated).

Serves 4

Cooking spray

1 pound flat iron steak (or skirt steak or flank steak)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 tablespoon reduced-sodium soy sauce

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon liquid smoke

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Coat a stove-top grill pan or griddle with cooking spray and preheat to medium-high. Season both sides of steak with salt and pepper. In a bowl, combine Worcestershire sauce, soy sauce, mustard, liquid smoke and cumin. Brush mixture all over both sides of steak.

Place steak on hot grill and cook 4-5 minutes per side for medium meat. Remove steak from pan and let stand 5-10 minutes before slicing crosswise (against the grain) into 1/4-inch thick strips. Serve steak in tacos with desired fillings.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Creamed Vegetables

by in Robin's Healthy Take, November 7, 2011
creamed spinach
Spinach with a touch of cream.

Growing up, I couldn’t get enough creamed corn and creamed spinach. But the weird thing is, I never eat either one anymore. Not sure why. Restaurants don’t serve them as much and I never think to cook them – what with all the anti-butter-in-the-vegetables sentiment out there. But you don’t need loads of fat to make a veggie side dish creamy. I’m putting my favorites back on the menu with a little twist.

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Win This Cookbook: Robin Takes 5

by in Cookbooks, Giveaway, November 2, 2011

robin cookbook coverTake back dinner with our very own Robin Miller‘s new cookbook Robin Takes 5. Choose from 500 quick, healthy, weeknight meals that are all 500 calories or less. The best part? Each recipe has just five ingredients! That means less time at the store and even less time in the kitchen.

Whip up soups, pizzas, pastas, beef, seafood and side dishes every night of the week without breaking a sweat. Make Cashew Crusted Chicken with Roasted Jalapeno-Mango Chutney (one of 70 chicken recipes), or satisfy your sweet tooth with one of Robin’s 50 dessert recipes like Orange Marmalade Tart with Chocolate Covered Almonds.

“It’s a slam dunk for every busy person and Food Network fan out there,” she says.

You can buy your own copy of Robin Takes 5 or enter in the comments for a chance to win your own. Just let us know, in the comments, the five ingredients you couldn’t live without. The contest starts at 9:30 a.m. EST today, and ends on Friday, November 4 at 5 p.m. EST.

We’re giving one copy away to one very lucky, randomly selected commenter. You must include your email address in the “Email” field when submitting your comment so we can communicate with you if you’re a winner.

You may only comment once to be considered and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S. states, D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 to win. For the first day of the giveaway, all entries (answers) must be entered between 9:30 a.m. EST on November 2 and 5 p.m. EST on November 4. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of each prize: $29.99. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a Food Network, 9721 Sherrill Blvd, Knoxville, TN 37932.

So tell us, which 5 ingredients would you not be able to live without?

Robin’s Healthy Take: Play Date Snacks Kids Will Love

by in Robin's Healthy Take, October 3, 2011
instant, healthy strawberry cheesecake
This snack tastes like cheesecake, but it's healthier, and ready in seconds.

I love having tons of kids in my house, so when my boys ask for after-school play dates, I always say “YES! And as soon as we get home, I serve a snack — something that satisfies their hunger without ruining dinner. On school days, my kids eat lunch at 11:00 a.m. so by the time they get home at 3:30, they’re famished. But, we also eat dinner early (5:30 or 6:00) so I don’t want to stuff them with heavy fare. I consider snacks mini opportunities to eat healthy foods, things you can’t squeeze into regular meals. When you think of snacks as mini meals, you’re likely to keep them balanced (with low-fat protein, fruits, veggies and complex carbohydrates). Would you serve potato chips for dinner? Cookies? Of course not. So don’t serve them as snacks. My kids adore the goodies below and I bet yours will too. Each has the ideal blend of protein, carbs and healthy fats, plus important vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that come along for the ride. Please let me know how your kids like them and share some of your favorites!

Instant Strawberry Cheesecake: Whisk together 2 tablespoons softened light cream cheese or Neufchatel cheese and 1 teaspoon seedless strawberry or raspberry preserves. Spread the mixture on graham crackers and top with fresh strawberry slices or fresh raspberries.

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Robin’s Healthy Take: Breakfast On-the-Run

by in Robin's Healthy Take, September 19, 2011
egg and cheese wrap
Egg-and-Cheese Wrap: A super-easy and nutritious hand-held breakfast.

Last week I wrote about quick weeknight meals for busy fall schedules. How about breakfast? Aren’t we just as busy (if not more) in the morning? I know we are in my house. Check out my favorite morning-rush staples.  I feed my kids something hearty and hot most mornings, so their brains and muscles get ramped up for the day ahead. The first is a breakfast wrap, a simple egg cooked flat with a sprinkling of cheese nestled in a multigrain tortilla. I love it because you get the health benefits of eggs, plus fiber and B vitamins from the multigrain tortilla and calcium from the cheese. A combo that keeps them chuggin’ for hours. You get similar nutrients from the mini bagel sandwich – a hand-held treat you can take in the car. For a fruit and protein version, check out the banana “soft taco”, banana and peanut butter in a nutritious wrap. It’s a breakfast that can hit the road and keep adults and kids satisfied until lunch. My kids love food on a stick so I make fruit kebabs a LOT. They’re fun to eat and super nutritious (I also bring them to school in the afternoon – they make the perfect snack before soccer, gymnastics, homework, etc.). The “Cup o’ Cereal” seems obvious, but how many people actually do it? I fill a travel-friendly cup with low-sugar, whole grain cereal (I use the plastic beer mugs we got at the Windrift Restaurant in New Jersey on Wing Night). A little embarrassing giving beer mugs to my kids but it’s just a cereal vessel!

Egg and Cheese Wrap: Spray a small non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Whisk 1 large egg and add to hot pan. Cook until egg is almost cooked through. Flip and top with about 1 tablespoon shredded cheddar, mozzarella or parmesan cheese. Cook until egg is completely cooked and cheese starts to melt (just a few seconds). Slide egg onto a small multigrain tortilla and roll up.

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Ask the Experts: Top Back-To-School Tips

by in Ask the Experts, September 2, 2011

back-to-school kids lunches
The hustle and bustle of getting the kiddies back to school can make your head spin. We’re not just talking about the youngsters either. People of all ages are getting ready to start their studies – and let’s not forget about mom and her hectic schedule too! We asked nutrition experts from around the country to share their top back-to-school tips to help ease the stress of this busy time of year.

Start Off Right
Our experts agree, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Healthy Eats contributor Katie Cavuto Boyle says “it’s tough to learn when you’re hungry so remember to eat breakfast; it fuels your mind and body so your school day is productive and enjoyable.” But if you’re like most families, mornings are hectic. Registered dietitian Sherri Hoyt suggests some advance planning. Kids (and parents!) may be tempted to skip breakfast or grab a sugar-laden pastry or fatty breakfast sandwich on the run.  Instead, “take time to make time”. . . in other words, plan for tomorrow’s breakfast the night before.

In need of a few quick breakfast ideas? Check out our Top-5 Quick Breakfast Ideas.

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