June 2010 Archives

This is a easy, light-ish coffeecake with a distinct almond flavor. Other berries could also be used such as frozen cherries, raspberries, etc. 8 servings is a little optimistic, we got around 6 out of it.

1  cup  all-purpose flour
1/2  cup  granulated sugar
3/4  teaspoon  baking powder
1/2  teaspoon  salt
1/4  teaspoon  baking soda
1 1/2  cup  fresh blueberries, divided
2/3  cup  low-fat buttermilk
2  tablespoons  butter or stick margarine, melted
1  teaspoon  vanilla extract
1/4  teaspoon  almond extract
1  large egg
Cooking spray
1/4  cup  sliced almonds
1  tablespoon  brown sugar
1/4  teaspoon  ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°.

Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Combine first 5 ingredients in a large bowl; add 1 cup blueberries, and toss well. Combine buttermilk, butter, extracts, and egg; stir well with a whisk. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until flour mixture is moist.

Spoon batter into an 8-inch square baking pan coated with cooking spray, spreading evenly. Top with 1/2 cup blueberries.

Combine almonds, brown sugar, and cinnamon, and sprinkle over blueberries. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

8 servings (serving size: 1 (2-inch) square)
Calories: 188 (27% from fat)
Fat: 5.7g (sat 2.4g,mono 2.2g,poly 0.6g)
Original recipe


These homemade falafel made with canned chickpeas, onion, and fresh herbs are easy, delicious, and healthy. The mix can be made ahead of time, and the patties cook up quickly in a frying pan with a little oil or baked in the oven. Adjust the red pepper to taste: even 1/4 tsp was fairly spicy to me.

1 15 ounce can garbanzo beans
1 small onion, finely chopped
2-3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
pepper to taste

Serve with: pita bread, cucumber, hummus, lemon-yogurt sauce, lettuce and tomato

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drain and rinse the garbanzo beans. Put in a medium sized bowl and smash with a fork. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well. Form into small balls, about 1 1/2″ in diameter and slightly flatten.

To bake: Place onto an oiled baking pan. Bake for 15 minutes on each side, until nicely browned (since it's baked, only the part actually touching the pan will be browned and crispy).

To saute: Heat 1 tsp. olive oil in a large frying pan over med-high heat. Add falafel, cook until brown and crisp on both sides.

Makes about 18 patties.

Original recipe

lemonhoneychicken.JPGHoney, lemon, and garlic flavored dark meat chicken, goes well over rice with some green vegetable on the side. 

8 - 10 dark meat chicken pieces
salt and freshly ground pepper to season
1 tbsp olive oil
4-5 slices of ginger
1 head of garlic, all cloves peeled and crushed
few thyme sprigs
2 tbsp white wine
2 tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp honey
1 cup chicken stock
1 lemon, finely sliced
Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Heat olive oil in a large sauté pan. Brown the chicken pieces on each side over high heat for 2-3 mins until golden brown. Remove from pan.

Add ginger, garlic and thyme to the pan. Stir fry lightly.

Add white wine to deglaze the pan. Drizzle over the soy sauce and honey.

Pour in hot water, add the lemon slices and drumsticks. Lower heat to medium high, let the liquid bubble until it becomes thick, about 10 minutes or until the drumsticks cook through. Add spoonful water at a time if the sauce becomes dry.

Original recipe

A simple summer recipe with fresh tomato & corn salad. Not earth-shattering, but good and pretty quick to put together.

1  tablespoon  olive oil
1 1/2  teaspoons  ground coriander
1/2  teaspoon  salt
1/2  teaspoon  ground cumin
1/4  teaspoon  chili powder
1/8  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
1/8  teaspoon  black pepper
4  (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
2  cups  cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4  cup  sliced green onion tops
2  tablespoons  thinly sliced fresh basil
1  tablespoon  balsamic vinegar
1  teaspoon  olive oil
1/4  teaspoon  salt
1/8  teaspoon  black pepper
1  (7-ounce) can whole-kernel corn, drained or 4 corn cobs
optional: arugula

To prepare the chicken, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Combine coriander and the next 5 ingredients (coriander through 1/8 teaspoon black pepper); rub evenly over both sides of chicken. Add chicken to pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until done.

To prepare salad, combine tomatoes and remaining ingredients, tossing well. Slice chicken; serve over salad.

Optional: Use fresh corn on the cob, if in season. Roast corn under broiler for ~18 minutes until golden, turning cobs every so often.

4 servings (serving size: about 4 1/2 ounces chicken and 3/4 cup salad)     

Calories: 296 (23% from fat)
Fat: 7.4g (sat 1.3g,mono 4g,poly 1.1g)
Original recipe

This sweet and creamy pie is a wonderful use for an abundance of fresh blueberries. More decadent than a crisp or cobbler, it can be served with ice cream, whipped cream, or just a glass of milk. 

3-5 c. fresh blueberries
1 unbaked 9" deep dish pastry shell

1 c. sugar (or brown sugar)
1/3 c. flour
1/8 tsp. salt
2 eggs, beaten
1/2 c. sour cream

1/2 c. sugar
1/2 c. flour
1/4 c. butter
Put the blueberries in the prepared pastry shell, set aside. Combine 1 c. sugar, 1/3 c. flour, and salt. Add eggs and sour cream, stir until blended. Spoon over blueberries.
Combine 1/2 c. sugar and 1/2 c. flour, cut in butter with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle evenly over sour cream mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for 50-55 minutes or until lightly browned. Let rest until set, serve warm.

Cummings family recipe
chocolate thumbprints.JPG

These cakey cookies are more like brownies, not too sweet, with a rich cocoa flavor. You can do a lot of variations: roll them in powdered sugar or coconut, or my favorite: make them into thumbprint cookies and fill them with strawberry or raspberry jam. The nice thing about them is you don't need any special ingredients and they're low fat (~2.5g/cookie without chocolate chips). Be sure not to overbake them - they should be set around the edges but still soft in the middle.

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs or 3 large egg whites
2 tsp. vanilla
~1/2 c. chocolate chips

icing sugar, for rolling
optional: strawberry or raspberry jam, sweetened coconut flakes

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a medium bowl (or the bowl of a food processor) combine the flour, sugars, cocoa, baking powder and salt. Add the butter and blend with a fork, whisk or pastry cutter (or pulse the food processor) until well blended. You might need to add a splash of milk to moisten the dough. Fold in chocolate chips (if using).

If you're using a food processor, transfer the mixture to a bowl. Add the eggs and vanilla and stir until the dough comes together (you may need to use your hands for this) - at first it will seem like there isn't enough liquid, but it eventually works! You may need to get in there with your hands - don't be afraid to - you'll need to roll the dough into balls by hand anyway.

Put some icing sugar in a shallow bowl and spray two cookie sheets with nonstick spray. Roll the dough into walnut-sized balls and roll the balls in icing sugar to coat; place an inch or two apart on the cookie sheets. Flatten slightly (they don't spread out much)

For thumprints: make a shallow indentation in each cookie, fill with a small spoonful strawberry or raspberry jam.

Bake for 8-12 minutes, until set around the edges but still soft in the middle. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Makes about 2 dozen cookies.

Original recipe

One of Daniel's easy improvised recipes. Comfort food fast and simple.

1 small onion, chopped
1 package portobello mushroom caps, chopped
1/2 lb. ground beef
2 cans diced tomatoes with oregano
2 boxes wild rice mix (Uncle Ben's)
Italian seasoning
Cook rice according to directions. Meanwhile saute onion and mushrooms a few minutes until soft. Add beef and cook until browned. Add canned tomatoes, simmer until rice is done. Add rice, mix, and serve.

I am forever in search of the perfect pancake recipe. This may not be it, but it's a nice change from the usual. Oats give the pancakes a hearty texture, without being as heavy as flapjacks. As always, nuts or berries are great additions.

1 1/3 cups milk
1 cup rolled old fashioned oats
2 eggs
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2/3 cup flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt

Combine milk and oats and let stand five minutes. Beat the eggs lightly in a separate bowl then add along with the oil. Combine flour, powder, sugar and salt and stir into oat mixture. Let sit for about five more minutes or until slightly bubbly. Pour onto a hot griddle, or nonstick pan; flip when bubbles form and the edges are beginning to look dry.

Makes about 1 dozen pancakes

Original recipe

Fried okra is a very traditional southern side dish, and was the only way I would eat the otherwise slimy vegetable as a kid. These are baked instead of deep fried, so they are not as decadent as the ones we used to get at "Dixie Dandy" back home, but they have a nice crunch and taste nearly as good when dipped in ketchup.

1 egg
1/2 teaspoon chili pepper sauce (optional)
1 lb. fresh okra
1 cup dry bread crumbs
Salt and pepper to taste
Nonstick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Trim ends from okra and slice into rounds about 1/2" thick. In a large pot of sated water, boil okra about 5 minutes, just until tender. Drain and pat dry. In a large bowl, beat together egg, pepper sauce, and one Tbsp of water. Add okra to bowl and stir until coated with the egg mixture.

Fill a large paper or resealable plastic bag with the bread crumbs, salt and pepper. With a slotted spoon, remove okra from the egg mixture and add to the bag, turning and shaking slightly until okra is evenly coated.

On a nonstick baking sheet, spread okra in a single layer and spray okra with nonstick spray. Bake about 12-15 minutes, until crisp and golden brown. (Serves six.)
Original recipe

Cinnamon, cardamon, and black currant flavored liqueur spice up this strawberry jam. Wonderful on plain yogurt or, of course, toast. Feel free to play with the amounts of each ingredient, the measurements are by no means precise.

6  cups  chopped strawberries (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1  cup  sugar
6  tablespoons  crème de cassis (black currant-flavored liqueur)
1  tablespoon  water
1/2  teaspoon  ground cinnamon
1/4  teaspoon  ground cardamom

Combine all ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until reduced to 2 cups (about 1 hour and 10 minutes), stirring occasionally. Cool completely; cover and chill 8 hours.

Makes 2 cups (serving size: 2 tablespoons)
Calories: 73
Fat: 0.2g (sat 0.0g,mono 0.0g,poly 0.1g)
Original recipe

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