Lighter Beef Bolognese
Apr17

Lighter Beef Bolognese

Who doesn’t have fond memories of eating Spaghetti Bolognese as a kid! This is my healthier take on Giada De Laurentiis’ Simple Bolognese—chock full of veggies, and with tips I learned from making Anne Burrell’s more complex and time-consuming, traditional Bolognese.   I love that you can make this the day before, but be warned that the house will smell so incredible that it will be hard to wait until the next day!   I learned from Chef Anne Burrell to add the pasta to the sauce in the pot, with a little pasta water (if necessary) and “marry the two together.” If I’m not using all of it, I just add an equal amount of sauce to the amount of pasta I’m using. Add a little more sauce on top of each plate, drizzle a little high-quality olive oil over the top and sprinkle some parm to finish. Yumm! Who needs Maria’s!   His and Hers     I don’t usually make two different types of pasta, but I thought this would be a good way to illustrate this gorgeous sauce. Barilla Plus Spaghetti is my fav because it has extra protein and fiber; even little Aja loves it. Sam prefers Trader Joe’s Corn Pasta because it’s easier on his stomach. Click here for Orna’s Trader Joe’s Shopping List >>   I like Trader Joe’s Parmesan which has a coarser texture. Please do not use parmesan from a green can!   I found Laura’s Lean Beef (92% lean, 8% fat) at Ralph’s Market, and it was delicious. Check their website for a market near you that carries it.   I used Menage a Trois wine—because that’s my favorite wine to drink. See Trader Joe’s and Costco Shopping Lists. Make sure your knife cuts are even and the veggies are chopped small. It might sound as if you’re using a lot of salt, but you have to season every single layer, or the end product will taste bland; I learned this from Anne Burrell. Make sure to use kosher salt – it really makes a difference. I copied Alton Brown’s trick of keeping it in a sugar bowl; makes it easy to pinch. Remember that the parmesan cheese will add some salt at the end, so don’t over-salt. How to Coarsely Chop Mushrooms To coarsely chop the mushrooms; slice them with a sharp knife, and then working in batches, run your knife through them in different directions to get them chopped approximately the same size. Cool Tools Mario Batali 6-quart Dutch Oven LOVE using my dutch oven for this! Epicurious hard spatula Lighter Beef Bolognese 2013-08-06 17:15:29 Serves 4 Write a review...

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Portabella Mushrooms with Balsamic Marinade—grilled or sautéed
Apr15

Portabella Mushrooms with Balsamic Marinade—grilled or sautéed

I saw these gorgeous Portabella mushrooms at Costco and it inspired me to make these easy, fresh and delicious mushrooms. I sautéed them in a pan, but in summer just throw them on the grill for a healthy side. Only $4.79 for 4 at Costco Marinated Portabella Mushrooms You can add 1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme or dried basil to the marinate if you’re a fan of herbs. I like to serve them with balsamic vinegar and olive oil or balsamic vinaigrette for the extra lettuce once I’ve eaten my share of the mushrooms! Nutritional Info for 1 mushroom with 1 cup of greens calories 60 fat 3g carb 7g protein 3g 2 Weight Watchers PointsPlus values for 1 mushroom with 1 cup of greens Weight Watchers Power Food Click here for more info on Weight Watchers Power Foods >> Click here for Orna’s Trader Joe’s Shopping List >> Click here for Orna’s Costco Shopping List >> Portabella Mushrooms with Balsamic Marinade 2013-08-06 17:15:20 Serves 4 Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 10 min Total Time 20 min Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 10 min Total Time 20 min 64 calories 9 g 0 g 3 g 3 g 0 g 212 g 246 g 6 g 0 g 2 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 212g Servings 4 Amount Per Serving Calories 64 Calories from Fat 24 % Daily Value * Total Fat 3g 4% Saturated Fat 0g 2% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 2g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 246mg 10% Total Carbohydrates 9g 3% Dietary Fiber 3g 10% Sugars 6g Protein 3g Vitamin A11%Vitamin C6% Calcium3%Iron5% * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Does this look wrong? Ingredients 4 large Portabella mushrooms, stems discarded 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil 1 clove garlic, minced 1 tablespoon soy sauce (use low sodium if required) about half a 1 lb bag mixed greens (recommended: Trader Joe's Butter Lettuce with Radicchio) olive oil cooking spray Instructions Whisk balsamic vinegar, garlic, soy sauce and oil together in a measuring cup. Place mushrooms in a gallon ziplock bag; pour sauce over and distribute evenly over mushrooms, expelling air before closing. Marinate in fridge 1 - 3 hours (or at room temperature for 1/2 hour), turning frequently. To Saute Remove mushrooms from sauce; discard sauce. Slice mushrooms into 1-inch thick pieces. Spray a 12-inch non-stick sauté pan with olive oil cooking spray. Saute mushroom slices over medium-high heat, stirring often, until cooked through,...

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Dried Young Coconut, Philippine Brand
Apr12

Dried Young Coconut, Philippine Brand

I’ve seen these at Costco before and resisted buying them in order to avoid eating them! But today they had me at sample. I always used to nag my dad to buy me a fresh coconut at the fruit market. Besides reminding me of Hawaii (my favorite place on earth), coconuts fit into my category of Godly Foods—along with mangos, avocados, eggs, and a few others. These high fiber, soft and delicious treats are not too sweet, and are packed with rich, coconutty flavor. Definitely worthy! Even Mr. Picky loves them. (Yay) This is what 42 grams looks like: I highly recommend for putting out when you have company. But definitely not to start a habit of snacking on them instead of fresh fruit or other natural foods; think of them more as an occasional treat. If you don’t think you can manage this don’t buy them! You’ll find them in the dried fruit aisle at Costco; $8.99 for an 18oz bag. Click here for my full Costco Shopping List. You can also find them on Amazon >> Nutritional info for 1.5 oz (42g) Calories 147 Fat 4g Carb 30g Fiber 14g 3 Weight Watchers PointsPlus values for 42 grams. I also LOVE the Roasted Coconut Chips at Trader Joe’s >> 8/26/13 Look what I just found at Target! Target shopping list coming...

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Love + Kindness = Thinner Thighs

Do you ever have a day when you’re just in a slump and know you need something to pull yourself out of it? And then something magically appears that was exactly what you needed… The cover of my mother-in-law’s Spring Oprah Magazine caught my eye. (I knew that as soon as I cancelled my subscription—in an attempt to un-clutter—I would see an issue that I really wanted to read!)   Love + Kindness = Thinner Thighs Must read! I convinced my husband to purchase it THAT night on the iPad— well, actually, I was nagging him to run out and buy me the magazine, and he convinced me to get it on the iPad. (Which makes sense, since we own a Mac Consulting Company!) Don’t tell anyone that this is my first time reading a magazine on my iPad. Still getting used to it. And switching from article to notes to type this post! Hmmm. Not convinced. Do you prefer to read magazines the old-fashioned way? Or are you loving having access to all the issues on your iPad? Anyway, back to the article… Life Coach, Martha Beck’s kind, soothing advice was exactly what I needed—and if you’re still reading this post I suspect it’s what you need too: Feel about yourself what you would have others feel about themselves. Self loathing tends to increase stress eating and the production of fat-storing stress hormones. Apply SALVE (self-acceptance, love, value, esteem) to break negative patterns and improve yourself. As a former Weight Watchers Leader and Private Coach, I am great at giving people advice to be kind to themselves, not be hard on themselves, and treat themselves with the same tender loving kindness they would give to a friend who is hurting inside. But not always so good at following my own advice. The Jewish Holidays, family functions and get-togethers always seem to make me feel like I should be perfectly skinny, toned, and in control. And then of course the pressure I put on myself sends me straight to the comfort which food had always provided me with. And when I’m spending time cooking and baking (and tasting) for said functions—plus blogging, and being a mom to a toddler—something has to take a back seat; and it’s usually the exercise. You know you really need to get your butt back into the gym when your three-year-old starts pinching the schmaltz (definition: chicken fat) on the back of your arms. Not helpful! I don’t know why I put such pressure and stress on myself to be ‘skinny’ for yet another family Bat Mitzvah—this one (the last of three in three months)...

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Kellogg’s Special K Protein Cereal, with Greek Yogurt
Mar28

Kellogg’s Special K Protein Cereal, with Greek Yogurt

This caught my eye at Gelson’s yesterday, though I suspect it’s been out for quite a while.   I tried it the way I usually eat Fiber One (Original Bran), Kashi Go Lean, or Kashi Good Friends. 1/2 cup cereal Add 1/4 cup Greek Yogurt (recommend: Fage 0%) Add 1/4 cup 1% low fat milk Enjoy! While I was taking the pics, the cereal got quite soggy and lost its crunch; so I learned that it doesn’t hold up to milk that well. I had started off with 1/2 cup of cereal, but felt I needed the extra 1/4 cup, which I tried with milk only. Adding Greek yogurt definitely gives it more creaminess and makes it far more satisfying and filling. These wheat, rice, and soy flakes are sweet enough that even with the tart Greek yogurt I didn’t need to add any sugar or Splenda. I like the slightly cinnamony taste, the crunch, and the fact that it has 10g of protein per serving, which keeps me satisfied for longer. I would prefer for it to have more than 3g of fiber. This cereal contains sugar, so it is not a Weight Watchers Power Food and would not be included in Weight Watchers Simple Start (2014) or Simply Filling Technique as a Power Food. Fiber One (Original Bran) doesn’t have any sugar and is therefore a Weight Watchers Power Food, so if you’re following the Simply Filling Technique that might be a better choice for you. Nutritional info for 3/4 cup Special K Protein cereal (32g) Calories 120 Fat 1g Carb 19g Protein 10g Fiber 3g 3 Weight Watchers PointsPlus values for 3/4 cup cereal (32g) Nutritional info for 1/4 cup Fage 0% Greek Yogurt Calories 32 Fat 0g Carb 2g Protein 6g Fiber 0g 1 Weight Watchers PointsPlus value for 1/4 cup Fage 0% Greek Yogurt 1 Weight Watchers PointsPlus value for 1/4 cup low fat, 1% milk   I think I’ll stick with my Fiber One breakfast, but I’ll keep this on hand for when I feel like something different! What’s your favorite low point, satisfying breakfast? I’d love to hear from...

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