Butternut Squash and Apple Soup
Dec18

Butternut Squash and Apple Soup

This time of year—when we’re surrounded by tempting treats—this low fat, comforting soup will feel slightly indulgent and satisfy your sweet tooth, without taking you down! And it’s easy enough to make during the week, but special enough to serve for guests.   I was inspired to make this by the 2-pound container of butternut squash chunks (preservative free) at Costco.   You can, of course, just peel, core and cut up a large butternut squash to yield about the same amount. Nothing ever compares to the freshest ingredients that you peel and chop yourself, but sometimes using convenience items is the difference between getting a homemade dinner on the table, or just not attempting anything… so I’ll always opt for using precut veggies to help out when you need it! A touch of curry powder adds an interesting flavor, without overpowering the delicious squash or making it spicy. Trader Joe’s Curry Powder works perfectly in this recipe, but any mild curry powder will do.   “Sweat” the onions first, over low heat, to soften them and release the moisture—without browning them.   Garnish with Low Fat Greek Yogurt to balance the sweetness and add extra protein. If you’re doing Weight Watchers Simple Start or Simply Filling, Fat Free Greek Yogurt will keep this a Weight Watchers Power Food. Yummm!! Butternut Squash and Apple Soup 2013-12-18 14:32:41 Serves 6 4 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per serving. WW Power Food. Write a review Save Recipe Print 159 calories 28 g 0 g 5 g 4 g 1 g 351 g 59 g 10 g 0 g 5 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 351g Servings 6 Amount Per Serving Calories 159 Calories from Fat 47 % Daily Value * Total Fat 5g 8% Saturated Fat 1g 4% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 4g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 59mg 2% Total Carbohydrates 28g 9% Dietary Fiber 5g 19% Sugars 10g Protein 4g Vitamin A322%Vitamin C60% Calcium9%Iron8% * 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 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil, high quality 1 large yellow onion, chopped 1 teaspoon mild curry powder 2 pounds butternut squash chunks (1 large) 2 small golden delicious apples, or other sweet apples 14.5 oz can (2 cups) low sodium chicken broth (or vegetable broth) kosher salt freshly ground black pepper water Instructions Add olive oil, onions, curry powder, and two large pinches of salt to a large dutch oven or stockpot and cook uncovered, over low heat, for 10 - 15 minutes, until...

Read More
Low Fat Cinnamon Apple Cake
Jun14

Low Fat Cinnamon Apple Cake

You don’t have to be a baker to make this cake! It’s super-easy and absolutely delicious. Only 8 Weight Watchers PointsPlus values per slice.   Your family will be chomping at the bit to try it, after inhaling the wonderful aroma while it bakes. The cream cheese in the batter—even though fat free—gives the cake its moist, luscious texture, and cuts the calories and fat. Delicious for dessert, as a coffee cake, or even for breakfast. I love that you can make it the day before and it will still be moist and delicious. I went with Trader Joe’s 0% Frozen Vanilla Greek Fat Free Yogurt. Slightly tart, but deliciously smooth and creamy. (If you’re a Pinkberry fan, you’ll love it.) If you’re going to all that trouble to bake a low-calorie cake, it seems a little silly to add full fat ice cream to the plate! Don’t you think? Only 100 calories and zero grams of fat for a 1/2 cup serving. Compare to 160 calories and 16 grams of fat in TJ’s Super Premium French Vanilla Ice Cream. Springform Pan If you don’t have an 8-inch springform pan, you can use an 8 1/2 or 9-inch springform, but reduce the baking time to 50 – 60 minutes. It’s really worth it to invest in good baking equipment because you will see a huge difference in your baked goods. Apples Always buy an extra apple or two just in case! The original recipe calls for Rome apples, but I’m partial to Fuji for their flavor and texture. From reading reviews online, it seems as if almost any apples will work. Click here for an easier way to peel and core apples >> Cream Cheese Fat free  or low fat cream cheese work just as well, but make sure to use the one in a block, not in a tub. I usually use Fat Free Philadelphia, but this time I used Trader Joe’s Low Fat Cream Cheese and it was delish. Half the fat of regular cream cheese What is Softened Butter (and Cream Cheese)? Softened butter (65 – 67 degrees) should easily bend without breaking, and should give slightly when pressed. Let refrigerated butter sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes. For faster softening, cut it into slices. It shouldn’t be melting at all, or it won’t retain the air incorporated during creaming. Tips for Success Don’t overmix the batter; when you see the last traces of flour disappearing it’s time to stop mixing!   Gently stir in the cinnamon-apple mixture with a silicone spatula. Mix in the apples just until incorporated evenly. Mmm… yummy batter! Smooth...

Read More
Sweet and Sour Braised Red Cabbage
Mar26

Sweet and Sour Braised Red Cabbage

This is a wonderful accompaniment to brisket or chicken, and can be made ahead for the holidays. I can still smell and taste all the delicious dishes my stepmother, Pam, would make every Friday, when my older brothers and sister would all come home for shabbat dinner. Happy times. I see now that many of the recipes she made were from Cooking with Myrna Rosen, known as “The Cooking Bible” in South Africa. Does anyone remember this book? When I moved to Los Angeles and Pam gave me this wonderful cookbook, I found the recipes very intimidating. Very little detail, no pictures—and no one to show me! I wish that I had been as interested in cooking when I was growing up as I am now. That’s one of the reasons I always try to involve my toddler in what I’m making. It warmed my heart when she asked me for a toy vegetable peeler; I couldn’t find one anywhere, so I promised her she could peel the carrots next time. I figure at 3 1/2, she’s ready! I’ve included all the details that I wished I would have had when I first made this—hopefully any newbies out there will find this helpful. Enjoy! How to coarsely shred cabbage Slice cabbage in half; cut out core. Slice into 1/2-inch slices length-wise and then slice those in half.   Click here for an easier way to peel and core apples >> Cool Tools Mario Batali 6-Quart Dutch Oven Tongs Sweet and Sour Braised Red Cabbage 2013-08-06 17:14:24 Serves 8 Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 1 hr 15 min Total Time 1 hr 35 min Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 1 hr 15 min Total Time 1 hr 35 min 166 calories 35 g 0 g 4 g 3 g 0 g 258 g 339 g 25 g 0 g 3 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 258g Servings 8 Amount Per Serving Calories 166 Calories from Fat 34 % Daily Value * Total Fat 4g 6% Saturated Fat 0g 2% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 2g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 339mg 14% Total Carbohydrates 35g 12% Dietary Fiber 5g 21% Sugars 25g Protein 3g Vitamin A33%Vitamin C148% Calcium9%Iron9% * 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 1 large red cabbage, 2 to 2 1/2 pounds, roughly shredded (see notes) 2 large sour green apples (recommended: Granny Smith) 6 cloves 1 lemon 1/2 cup light brown sugar (not packed) 1...

Read More

The Best Homemade Applesauce

So simple, yet deliciously pleasing! My husband, Sam, grew up eating my mother-in-law, Tammy’s delicious, homemade applesauce. She would layer it in a pyrex dish with an oatmeal and brown sugar dough, sprinkled with almonds and cinnamon sugar. And give the kids the extra applesauce to snack on. No wonder he has such fond memories! My attempt at making her famous “Porridge Pie” was a disaster—probably because my applesauce was too thin. Perhaps one day I’ll brave it again and Tammy will let me share the recipe with you all! (What do you say, Mom?) I tried to find a version of applesauce with a little less sugar, and this one from The Neelys was perfect. The first time I made it, I didn’t buy cinnamon sticks and it was still delicious. If only I could get the same happy hubby from all the complicated, detailed dishes that I painstakingly attempt! Maybe it’s the simplicity—resulting in less kitchen craziness that he really appreciates. What you will need   I learned a much easier and faster ways of peeling, coring, and slicing apples from Stephanie Jaworski on The Joy of Baking.                 First cut the apple in two, to the right of the core. Lay apple down on flat side and cut away flesh to the right of the core. Repeat until left with only the core. Use a small paring knife or potato peeler to peel the apple pieces and then slice into 1/2-inch pieces. Cool Tools Mario Batali 6-Quart Dutch Oven, Microplane Fine Grater The Best Homemade Apple Sauce 2013-08-05 17:53:11 Serves 10 Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 30 min Cook Time 30 min Total Time 1 hr Prep Time 30 min Cook Time 30 min Total Time 1 hr 111 calories 29 g 0 g 0 g 1 g 0 g 182 g 4 g 23 g 0 g 0 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 182g Servings 10 Amount Per Serving Calories 111 Calories from Fat 3 % Daily Value * Total Fat 0g 0% Saturated Fat 0g 0% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 4mg 0% Total Carbohydrates 29g 10% Dietary Fiber 4g 16% Sugars 23g Protein 1g Vitamin A2%Vitamin C20% Calcium2%Iron2% * 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 Fuji apples (or Golden Delicious) 3 large Granny Smith apples 1/2 cup apple juice, no sugar added (or 200ml Trader Joe's Kids Reduced Calorie Apple Juice...

Read More