Light Asian Broccoli Slaw & Quinoa Salad
Jan21

Light Asian Broccoli Slaw & Quinoa Salad

This deliciously refreshing salad has a little crunch, a little sweet, and a lot of healthy in each bite. And it literally takes TEN minutes to throw together!   I got the idea from my girlfriend, Nicole, who added tortilla chips to my Sweet & Spicy Tuna and Quinoa Salad (my most re-pinned recipe ever!), to make it less “light”. Loving the idea of the crunch, it inspired me to upgrade my Tuna Lunch Salad into a fun Super Bowl Party Salad, with cranberries and almonds. The quinoa absorbs the dressing and adds an interesting texture, not usually found in Chinese Chicken Salads—which started the craze for all the Asian-inspired salads—made with Ramen Noodles, which are higher in carbs, fat, and calories! (Who needs those?!) Did you know that a Chinese Chicken Salad at the Cheesecake Factory is 960 Calories?! They don’t even list the fat or fiber, so it’s impossible to calculate the points. I’m not sure why these cute little ancient grains (pronounced keen-wah) bring me such joy. 🙂 Especially now that you can buy pre-cooked packages at Trader Joe’s! (Love that!)     Mann’s is my favorite Broccoli Slaw because the red cabbage adds color, and I find Trader Joe’s Broccoli Slaw a little tough and unruly! But any brand will do—in fact, you could even use regular cole slaw to change it up.   Love that you can buy already-toasted almonds! Add them at the end to keep the crunch. If you’re not a fan, sunflower seeds or pepitas (pumpkin seeds) will do the job.   Trader Ming’s Sesame Soy Ginger Vinaigrette rocks! And I love that it doesn’t count on Weight Watchers Simple Start or Simply Filling. But you could substitute any light Asian-inspired dressing. If you’re using an Asian-style dressing with oil, you can leave out the sesame oil.   Sesame Oil gives a wonderful, rich flavor, and a little goes a long way. If you don’t have any, leave it out, but it adds a lot to any oriental dish, so it’s a worthy investment!   I use Trader Joe’s organic Dried Cranberries, which are just as tasty and sweet as the regular ones, but lower in calories and sugar. Trader Joe’s organic Dried Cranberries 3 PointsPlus for 1/3 cup (120 calories) Trader Joe’s Dried Cranberries 4 PointsPlus for 1/4 cup (140 calories)   Apple Cider Vinegar blends well with the other flavors, and the little bit of acidity brightens up the dish. If you don’t have any, you could use rice vinegar, rice wine vinegar, or even a drop of balsamic vinegar. Add Trader Joe’s Just Teriyaki Chicken or Teriyaki Tofu Trader Joe’s Organic Baked Tofu, Teriyaki Flavor to make it a...

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Healthy, Make-Ahead Green Beans
Nov01

Healthy, Make-Ahead Green Beans

Don’t waste points—or calories—on Green Bean Casserole! Unless that’s your favorite childhood dish, and it’s a worthy expense. This easy, make-ahead side is perfect for Thanksgiving—or Thanksgivukkah, the nickname given by American Jews to this first mergence of Thanksgiving and Hanukkah since 1888. I love that you can make the beans and the vinaigrette up to two days ahead, and then you don’t need to take up oven or stove space! Blanching the green beans (cooking until tender in rapidly boiling, salted water) and then chilling in ice water, keeps the vibrant green color and and prevents them from getting limp or mushy. The water for boiling the beans and the ice water needs to be salty (like the ocean), or your beans will taste bland.     Mild shallots impart just enough flavor, without making them too strong or onion-y. Click here for How to Mince a Shallot   Green Beans with Mustard Vinaigrette 2013-10-31 14:18:37 Serves 12 Weight Watchers Power Food (count the olive oil toward your daily serving). Or 2 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per serving. Write a review Save Recipe Print 93 calories 5 g 0 g 7 g 2 g 1 g 131 g 2190 g 2 g 0 g 6 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 131g Servings 12 Amount Per Serving Calories 93 Calories from Fat 65 % Daily Value * Total Fat 7g 11% Saturated Fat 1g 5% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 5g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 2190mg 91% Total Carbohydrates 5g 2% Dietary Fiber 3g 12% Sugars 2g Protein 2g Vitamin A8%Vitamin C6% Calcium5%Iron6% * 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? Beans 3 pounds green beans, trimmed 3 tablespoons salt Vinaigrette 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil 3 tablespoons whole-grain mustard 4 teaspoons red wine or sherry vinegar 1 shallot, minced 1 garlic clove, minced 1 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme 1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste 1/4 teaspoon pepper Instructions For the beans: Bring about 8 quarts water to boil in a large pot over high heat. Fill large bowl with ice water mixed with 1 tablespoon salt; set aside. Add beans and about 2 tablespoons salt to boiling water and cook until mostly tender, but still underdone, with slight crunch in center, 3 - 5 minutes. Drain beans, then transfer immediately to ice water. Let beans cool completely, about 5 minutes, then drain and pat dry with paper towels. For the vinaigrette: Shake all ingredients together in jar with tight-fitting lid. To Store: Wrap beans...

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Asian Turkey Meatballs
Feb06

Asian Turkey Meatballs

The Asian flavors are a nice change from the usual Italian Style meatballs, and they are healthy to boot. (2 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per meatball.) I love that you can prepare the meatballs in advance. Perfect party food. I made a double batch for our Super Bowl Party this past Sunday and they were a huge hit. The original recipe was for four turkey burgers, but I thought it would work well as a mini-meatball appetizer—and I was right! If you can’t find Lemonaise, mix Light mayo, mustard, salt and pepper and a bit of fresh squeezed lemon juice, rice vinegar & pinch of sugar to taste!     I use Thai Sweet Chili sauce instead of the fresh chili. It’s a little sweet so I reduce the amount of sugar. The cucumber salad is delicious served with any Asian-flavored dish. You can use English cucumbers, double the recipe—drain and serve. Make Ahead Tips You can make the meatballs ahead and freeze. Defrost in refrigerator overnight and reheat in the microwave before plating and serving. Cool Tools Masterclad Pro Series Saute 12″ Non-Stick Pan with lid. Favorite sauté pan EVER! I discovered them at Costco on a special promotion, but you can find them online >> Instant read thermometer. Other Party Foods you Might Like Caprese on a Stick >> Light Asian Broccoli Slaw & Quinoa Salad >> Mini Cauliflower Pizza Bites >> THE BEST Cowboy Caviar (healthy dip/salad/snack) >> Asian-Style Turkey Meatball Minis 2013-08-05 18:02:28 Yields 26 2 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per meatball. Write a review Save Recipe Print 86 calories 6 g 30 g 4 g 7 g 1 g 93 g 161 g 2 g 0 g 2 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 93g Yields 26 Amount Per Serving Calories 86 Calories from Fat 35 % Daily Value * Total Fat 4g 6% Saturated Fat 1g 5% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 1g Monounsaturated Fat 1g Cholesterol 30mg 10% Sodium 161mg 7% Total Carbohydrates 6g 2% Dietary Fiber 0g 2% Sugars 2g Protein 7g Vitamin A2%Vitamin C5% Calcium3%Iron4% * 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? Cucumber Salad 5 small pickling or persian cucumbers, peeled and thinly sliced rounds (about 1/8-inch) 1/2 red onion, thinly sliced (I use less than 1/2 because I don't love raw onion) 1/4 cup rice vinegar (if you use seasoned rice vinegar just use a bit less salt) 1/8 cup sugar 1 teaspoon salt Meatballs 1 1/4 pounds ground turkey (I use 93% lean) 1/3 cup steamed jasmine rice (Trader Joe's frozen precooked jasmine...

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THE BEST Cowboy Caviar—healthy dip/salad/snack!
Feb05

THE BEST Cowboy Caviar—healthy dip/salad/snack!

I got this Cowboy Caviar recipe at a Mommy & Me recipe swap last summer, and every time I make it people inhale it as if it were crack! And everyone asks for the recipe. It was a huge hit at our Super Bowl Party, and I thought I’d just post it instead of handing out copies. Sharing the love… The first time I made it, my mother-in-law, Tammy, spoke to her sister, dear Auntie Lil—in Winnipeg, Canada, who was raving about a salad she had just tried; it turned out to be a variation of what I had just served in Los Angeles! But her version was called Mexican Corn and Bean Sierra, with black beans, red onion, and parsley—instead of black eyed peas, green onion, and cilantro. Funny! I’ve since seen variations popping up at grocery stores, parties, you name it. Trader Joe’s just came out with their own version of it. It’s obviously HOT HOT HOT right now! I hope you’ll try my version because it’s really fantastic. Serve with tortilla chips for the ultimate party food. Make sure to put out forks for the carb-counting-peeps, because it eats like a salad too. Or they can scoop it up on celery sticks. Oh—and I highly recommend doubling it. Orna’s Notes Many people are not fans of cilantro (you either love it or hate it), so you can substitute with Italian Parsley. Shoepeg Corn can be difficult to find; I found it at Gelsons Market. If you can’t find it just substitute with regular corn. What is shoepeg corn? Wikipedia description >> What part of the green onion do I use? Best Yahoo answer >> How to seed a tomato: Cut in half across the equator and scoop out the pulp with your finger. Cowboy Caviar 2013-08-05 17:35:41 Serves 10 7 Weight Watchers PointsPlus per serving Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 30 min Total Time 30 min Prep Time 30 min Total Time 30 min 280 calories 34 g 0 g 12 g 12 g 2 g 151 g 285 g 5 g 0 g 10 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 151g Servings 10 Amount Per Serving Calories 280 Calories from Fat 104 % Daily Value * Total Fat 12g 19% Saturated Fat 2g 9% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 2g Monounsaturated Fat 8g Cholesterol 0mg 0% Sodium 285mg 12% Total Carbohydrates 34g 11% Dietary Fiber 8g 33% Sugars 5g Protein 12g Vitamin A9%Vitamin C18% Calcium6%Iron23% * 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...

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Caprese on a Stick—the perfect party bite!
Feb04

Caprese on a Stick—the perfect party bite!

This is the ultimate, easy-to-eat-and-prepare party bite! And healthy too! I found other versions of these online, but they all alternate a full tomato with a full mozzarella ball. I combine the two so that all the flavors pop in your mouth in each bite. I also use marinated mozzarella balls, which are more flavorful than the plain mozzarella balls (cieglini).   Gourmet Blends Traditional and Pomegranate Balsamic Vinegars are my absolute fav! They’re closer to a balsamic reduction in taste and consistency than a plain balsamic vinegar.   Mention OrnaBakes to get a discount!   If you don’t want to splurge on the Gourmet Blends vinegars, Trader Joe’s Balsamic Glaze is a delicious and more affordable option.   My mother-in-law recently brought me a beautiful basil plant, and now that’s the only way I buy basil. It stays fresh and smells great (though hubby does complain that it smells “green”) and seeing it inspires me to make dishes with fresh basil.   I usually keep my vinegars and olive oil in easy-pour bottles, but for this recipe I use plastic squeeze bottles to control the drizzle. Honey tomatoes are sweet and delicious and the beautiful yellow adds color to the dish. If you can’t find them just use all grape or cherry tomatoes. Make Ahead Tips Wash and dry tomatoes and put back in plastic container lined with a paper towel; saves you from cleaning another bowl. Do not refrigerate your tomatoes! Slice just before assembling and serving. The mozzarella balls can be sliced the day before. Don’t forget to taste your food to check seasoning before putting it out! (QC = Quality Control) Caprese on a Stick 2013-08-05 17:31:24 Yields 24 Write a review Save Recipe Print Prep Time 30 min Total Time 30 min Prep Time 30 min Total Time 30 min 62 calories 9 g 7 g 2 g 3 g 1 g 82 g 69 g 8 g 0 g 1 g Nutrition Facts Serving Size 82g Yields 24 Amount Per Serving Calories 62 Calories from Fat 20 % Daily Value * Total Fat 2g 3% Saturated Fat 1g 6% Trans Fat 0g Polyunsaturated Fat 0g Monounsaturated Fat 1g Cholesterol 7mg 2% Sodium 69mg 3% Total Carbohydrates 9g 3% Dietary Fiber 1g 3% Sugars 8g Protein 3g Vitamin A12%Vitamin C14% Calcium6%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 12 honey tomatoes (Trader Joe's, Costco) 12 grape or cherry tomatoes marinated mozzarella balls (Trader Joe's, Costco) 24 small fresh basil leaves, or 12 medium...

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