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Tuesday, 17 January 2012

The Secret to a Get-Skinny Dinners

Hey Guys,

I just wanted to share some recipes with you that I tried and love.
As you know, I am on Zantrex 3 trying to lose weight, but I did not tell you that I decided to do this because me and ma man are going to Dominican Republic in less than 2 months.
Just watch out for my Zantrex 3 updates.

Here are some recipes you might want to try if you are trying to lose weight and are searching for healthy dinner recipes.

 Minestrone with Endive and Pepperoni

Considering that this minestrone soup incorporates mostly frozen vegetables, it is remarkably savory and aromatic. Look for frozen soup or stew vegetables with potatoes, carrots, celery and onion in the mix to give the soup the best flavor. Although pepperoni isn’t traditionally part of minestrone soup, you’ll find it’s a great shortcut to add spicy, complex flavor.

Ingredients

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

½ cup chopped fresh or frozen (thawed) bell peppers, any color
5 cups reduced-sodium beef broth
1½ teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
⅔ cup whole-wheat elbow noodles or other small pasta
1 pound frozen mixed soup (or stew) vegetables (including potatoes, carrots, celery, onion), thawed, chopped
1 cup frozen baby lima beans, thawed
1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes with garlic and onion
½ cup diced pepperoni
3 cups lightly packed coarsely chopped curly endive or chard, tough stems removed
Freshly ground pepper to taste
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for garnish

Directions:

1. Heat oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add bell peppers and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add broth, oregano and thyme; bring to a rolling boil over high heat. Add pasta and cook for 3 minutes less than the package directions.

2. Add mixed soup (or stew) vegetables and lima beans. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; boil until the vegetables are almost tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, pepperoni and endive (or chard); return to a boil. Adjust the heat and simmer until the endive (or chard) is just tender, about 5 minutes. Season with pepper and garnish with Parmesan, if desired.


Eggplant Bulgur Pilaf


One of the most important dishes at a Turkish table, this simple pilaf recipe features a combination of eggplant and bulgur. It is often an accompaniment to meat or chicken.


Ingredients
:


1 cup bulgur (see Note), preferably coarse

4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 pound eggplant (see Tip), diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 bunch scallions, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, diced
1 large carrot, peeled and shredded
2 large cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano
¾ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
½ cup reduced-sodium chicken broth (optional)
1 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley or cilantro


Directions:

1. Place bulgur in a large deep bowl, add enough warm water to cover by 2 inches, cover and let stand for 1 hour. Drain; set aside.

2. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add eggplant. Do not stir for the first minute; then cook, stirring, until beginning to soften, 4 to 5 minutes. Push the eggplant to the sides, making a well in the middle for the other ingredients.
3. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in the middle of the pan. Add onion, scallions, bell pepper, carrot and garlic. Do not stir for 2 minutes; then mix all the ingredients, including the eggplant, and cook, stirring, until the vegetables are soft, 3 to 4 minutes.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low. Make a well in the ingredients again and add tomato paste to the middle. Do not stir for 30 seconds; then turn the tomato paste over and cook for another 15 seconds. Add the drained bulgur, oregano, salt and pepper; stir well to combine. Heat through. If the eggplant is not completely tender, stir in broth, cover the pan and simmer until the eggplant reaches your desired tenderness. Remove from the heat; stir in parsley (or cilantro).

Note: Bulgur is made by parboiling, drying and coarsely grinding or cracking wheat berries. Bulgur just needs a quick soak in hot water for most uses. Look for it in the natural-foods section of large supermarkets, near other grains.

Tip: If you’re using large, common globe eggplant, which can be more bitter than other varieties, salting beforehand can reduce bitterness. To salt: Place prepped eggplant in a large colander over a bowl and mix with 1 tablespoon salt. Top the eggplant with a plate weighted down with cans. Let sit for 30 minutes to 1 hour before using. Rinse well with cold water, then dry with paper towels.


Tortilla Soup


Here’s a version of chicken tortilla soup that’s both super-easy and delicious. To make it even quicker, use crumbled baked tortilla chips in place of the homemade tortilla strips and skip Steps 1-2. Serve with vinegary coleslaw, lime wedges and hot sauce.



Ingredients:

8 corn tortillas, halved and thinly sliced

Canola or olive oil cooking spray
1 tablespoon canola oil
3 Anaheim or poblano peppers, diced
1 medium onion, diced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces (see Tip)
4 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes with green chiles
2 tablespoons lime juice
½ cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400°F.

2. Spread tortilla strips in an even layer on a baking sheet and coat with cooking spray. Bake until browned and crispy, 12 to 15 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add peppers and onion and cook, stirring, until the onion begins to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Add cumin and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add chicken, broth, tomatoes and their juice. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in lime juice. Serve each portion topped with some of the baked tortilla strips, Cheddar and cilantro.


Tip: To trim boneless, skinless chicken thighs, we like to use kitchen shears to snip the fat away from the meat.



Quick Roast Chicken and Root Vegetables


Roasted chicken in 45 minutes? No problem. This technique of starting bone-in chicken breasts on the stovetop and finishing them in a hot oven with vegetables gets a hearty dinner on the table in a hurry. While everything roasts, you still have time to make a quick pan sauce with shallot and Dijon mustard. Serve with a spinach salad.



Ingredients:

1 pound turnips, peeled and cut into ½-inch chunks

1 pound baby potatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram or 1 teaspoon dried
¾ teaspoon salt, divided
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 bone-in chicken breasts (12 ounces each), skin and fat removed, cut in half crosswise
1 large shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons red- or white-wine vinegar


Directions:

1.Preheat oven to 500°F.
2.Toss turnips, potatoes, 1 tablespoon oil, marjoram, ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper together in a medium bowl. Spread in an even layer on a large baking sheet. Roast for 15 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, place flour in a shallow dish. Transfer 2 teaspoons of the flour to a small bowl and whisk in broth; set aside. Season chicken with the remaining ¼ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour, shaking off excess. (Discard any leftover flour.)
4. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken, skinned-side down, and cook until well browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat.
5. After the vegetables have been roasting for 15 minutes, stir them and place one piece of chicken, skinned-side up, in each corner of the baking sheet. (Set the skillet aside.) Return the vegetables and chicken to the oven and roast until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes more.
6. When the chicken and vegetables have about 10 minutes left, return the skillet to medium heat. Add shallot and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Whisk the reserved broth mixture again, add to the pan and bring to a boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until reduced by about half, about 8 minutes. Stir in mustard and vinegar. Serve the chicken and vegetables with the sauce.

I hope you enjoy these :)
If you have any questions about these recipes, email me :D
 
Love E

1 comment:

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