Cauliflower Muffins (Gluten Free)
Apr14

Cauliflower Muffins (Gluten Free)

These low carb, high protein, gluten free muffins are a twist on Mini Cauliflower Pizza Bites, but even tastier and easier! And good enough to serve for company.   Only 1 Weight Watchers PointsPlus for 2 muffins! I recently discovered Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute which is fantastic for jazzing up any veggies. It takes these muffins to a whole new level of yumminess!   Pre-Washed Cauliflower (Trader Joe’s or Costco) make this a snap!  My favorite Parmesan is Trader Joe’s Freshly Grated Parmesan, which gives them a great texture and fresh, cheesy taste. Click here for my Trader Joe’s Shopping List (with Weight Watchers Power Foods and PointsPlus) >> Click here for my Costco Shopping List (with Weight Watchers Power Foods and PointsPlus) >> Cauliflower Muffins 2014-04-14 10:47:25 Yields 32 1 Weight Watchers PointsPlus for two muffins. Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 20 min Prep Time 20 min Cook Time 20 min 29 calories 1 g 20 g 1 g 3 g 1 g 22 g 140 g 0 g 0 g 0 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 22g Yields 32 Amount Per Serving Calories 29 Calories from Fat 13 % Daily Value * Total Fat 1g 2% Saturated Fat 1g 4% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 0g Cholesterol 20mg 7% Sodium 140mg 6% Total Carbohydrates 1g 0% Dietary Fiber 0g 1% Sugars 0g Protein 3g Vitamin A1%Vitamin C5% Calcium5%Iron1% * 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 x 12 oz bags cauliflower 3 large eggs 1 cup low fat cottage cheese 1 cup grated parmesan (freshly grated, not from a can please!) 3 - 4 teaspoons Trader Joe’s 21 Seasoning Salute (or Italian Seasoning) 1/2 - 1 teaspoon salt freshly ground black pepper (about 12 grinds) cooking spray Instructions Set the shelf in the middle and preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray three non-stick 12-cup mini muffin pans with cooking spray. Working with one bag of cauliflower at a time: break any large pieces into smaller florets and pulse in food processor until it reaches a rice-like texture. Place all the cauliflower in a large microwave safe bowl (uncovered) and microwave for 8 minutes, stirring halfway. (Do NOT add water or cover!!) Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, lightly beat eggs with a fork. Add cottage cheese, parmesan, and seasoning, and mix with fork to combine. Add to hot cauliflower; mix well. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt, pepper, and seasoning if needed. Fill...

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Guilt-Free Ricotta Cheesecake (fat/sugar/gluten FREE)
Mar12

Guilt-Free Ricotta Cheesecake (fat/sugar/gluten FREE)

Fat free, sugar free, gluten free, and zero points?! Now I bet you’re curious! Whip up this tasty treat when you’re craving something sweet, or need a baking fix. (You can even make them in your toaster oven.)   You get a more luscious, smoother texture with low fat ricotta cheese, but if you’re following Weight Watchers Simple Start or Simply Filling, it’s still super-delish with Trader Giotto’s Fat Free Ricotta—and would you believe, it’s a Weight Watchers Power Food?! (Therefore = zero points) I wouldn’t serve this if I was having the Queen of England over for tea, but this is my go-to when kettle corn just won’t cut it, and I feel  like baking something delicious that won’t make me feel one bit guilty… (Unless, of course, I eat the whole batch! What…?! I’ve never done that!) Actually, even if you ate all three, you’d only be eating a cup of ricotta cheese, 2 tablespoons of yogurt, and an egg. Not the end of the world. 🙂 WARNING: One of the criteria for determining if something is a Weight Watchers Power Food is by its abuse potential. So, while all of these ingredients are Weight Watchers Power Foods, if you do find yourself eating more than one serving—or it triggers the eater in you—I would recommend saving it for when you have other Weight Watchers over to share it with, or holding off until you can handle it better! Counting Points? It’s only 2 PointsPlus per serving. (Or 7 Points for all three!) It’s as easy as 1, 2, 3 Whisk all the ingredients together until nice and smooth     Place in 4-inch ramekins and bake in toaster oven for 20 minutes   Cool. Chill. Enjoy. (Pin! Share! Comment! 🙂 )   Fat Free Ricotta Cheesecake (gluten free) 2014-03-11 18:18:22 Serves 3 2 Weight Watchers Points Plus for one ramekin or 7 PointsPlus for the whole batch! Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 20 min Total Time 30 min Prep Time 10 min Cook Time 20 min Total Time 30 min 184 calories 6 g 104 g 12 g 12 g 7 g 112 g 147 g 3 g 0 g 5 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 112g Servings 3 Amount Per Serving Calories 184 Calories from Fat 108 % Daily Value * Total Fat 12g 19% Saturated Fat 7g 37% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 4g Cholesterol 104mg 35% Sodium 147mg 6% Total Carbohydrates 6g 2% Dietary Fiber 0g 0% Sugars 3g Protein 12g Vitamin A9%Vitamin C0% Calcium20%Iron3% * Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie...

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Veggie Burger Chop Suey
Jan26

Veggie Burger Chop Suey

This is such a fun, pleasing dish to eat—inspired by Dr. Praeger’s Asian Veggie Burgers. (LOVE!) There are SO many different ways to make it, so even if you haven’t seen the veggie burgers, or you’re not a fan of canned goods, read on! Taking the final pics was torturous, because the wonderful aroma was permeating the whole house, and all I wanted to do was sit down and gobble it up!     My new Twitter friend, Kimlai Yingling, saw my lovin’ tweet for these yummy Asian-flavored patties, and asked me to review them for her website, EatinAsian, including what I would do with them. (Review coming soon to EatinAsian) Which got me thinking… I prefer digging into a steaming bowl of tasty goodness with chopsticks (my secret weight-loss weapon), so my creation isn’t in typical “omelet” style—known as Egg Foo Yong. (But if you like it that way, have at it) Mine is more like Chop Suey—without the meat. Whatever you wanna call it, I’m telling you, it’s better than Chinese Take-Out! (And waaaaay better for you.) Each time you find a piece of veggie burger or egg it’s like hitting gold! The burger might break up a bit, revealing the plump, sweet peas and carrots, and spreading distinct ginger flavor throughout the dish.   The long (julienne cut) veggies give you a noodle fix.   You could add celery, scallions, mushrooms, cabbage, or even shredded carrots to brighten up the color. But I tried to keep it really simple and do-able—with pantry and freezer ingredients.   You’ll always find water chestnuts, bamboo shoots, and bean sprouts in my pantry; for times when I’m out of veggies and feel like whipping up some Chinese Comfort Food! I wonder if it’s because my mother grew up in Shanghai and our family has long enjoyed Chinese Cooking. Do you usually keep Asian canned veggies on-hand? I’ll of course always take fresh bean sprouts over canned. The canned ones aren’t as crisp and they can be a bit sour, so make sure to rinse and drain well. You’ll find them in the Asian section of your local market.   TIP: Adding the sesame oil to the veggies—instead of cooking them in it—allows you to use less, but still enjoy the lovely, rich flavor.     I found Dr. Praeger’s Sensible Foods Asian Veggie Burger at Whole Foods Market. Click here to purchase at drpraegers.com >>   Too bad they don’t qualify for Weight Watchers Simple Start or Simply Filling (they would have to have 2g of fat or less, and these have 5), but TRUST ME these are worth the 3 PointsPlus! If...

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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...

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Mario Batali’s Brutti Ma Buoni Cookies
Mar15

Mario Batali’s Brutti Ma Buoni Cookies

I first saw these Italian Meringue Cookies (translation: Ugly But Good) in a Weight Watchers Magazine, many years ago.   I finally made Mario Batali’s version from Foodnetwork.com—my go-to recipe resource—and they were simply divine. And the best part is they make a fantastic Passover Dessert and are low points to boot! (Weight Watchers PointsPlus value coming soon.) I’m not usually a fan of meringues, but these light, crispy-on-the-outside, chewy-on-the-inside, nutty puffs are delicious. I think the name is misleading because they are actually quite cute! The perfect sweet treat following a heavy holiday meal. In my humble opinion, most Passover Desserts are not worthy; not of the time to make them nor the calories to eat them! Since no flour or leavening agents are permitted, many recipes substitute Matzo Meal for flour. The best options are recipes that naturally don’t contain flour—like Flourless Cheesecake. And these cookies! Enjoy! Let me know how you like them. Freeze well. How to Whip Egg Whites Adapted from Baking at Home with The Culinary Institute of America Make sure there are no traces of fat in the whites themselves or on the equipment. (no yolk) Egg whites should be at room temperature when whipped, but are easier to separate while still cold. (Let rest 10 – 15 minutes after separating.) Begin whipping at a slow to moderate speed, until the whites loosen and become foamy. Add sugar gradually with mixer on moderate speed, then cinnamon, salt and vanilla, and increase speed to high. As more air is beaten into the whites, the texture becomes very smooth and the foam thickens enough to mound slightly. When you see the whisk start to leave track marks in the egg whites you are at the “soft peak” stage; the foam is still very glossy and moist, and when you pull the whisk out of the bowl and turn it upright, the whites slump over to one side in rounded peaks. As you continue to whip egg whites, they reach the “medium peak” stage. You will see distinct tracks left by the whisk or beater as you whip. The peaks formed when the whisk is lifted retain their shape longer, but are still glossy and smooth. This is the ideal stage for foams to be folded into batters. Maria Batali’s recipe calls for butter and sugar for greasing the cookie sheet, but I find it easier to just use parchment paper instead; and this makes the cookies non-dairy or pareve. I forgot what a huge quantity of cookies this recipe makes, and had to run out to pick up my toddler from preschool right in the...

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