Brunch for two!

bk2

Wow today you are lucky!  You get 4 recipes in one blog post to make one complete meal.  :-)

This morning, we woke up hungry.  We don’t have a ton of super easy to make food in the house, but I really wanted breakfast.  We didn’t have any milk, so I decided to find a nice fluffy pancake recipe.  I found an easy recipe with only ingredients we have in the house.  I realized half way through my plans that we don’t have syrup.  So,I started this plan what I wanted to put on top of my pancakes first.  I decided a strawberry applesauce would be nice.

Now, Jeremy loves over easy eggs, but because I don’t eat eggs, I have only ever learned to make them scrambled.  So Jeremy quickly read some internet directions on how to make them, and I did my best.  I put some oil in a non stick pan, and I think they actually came out perfectly.  I didn’t break the yoke, and they got flipped over and transferred to the plate.  They were not super pretty, but I didn’t break the yokes!  YAY ME!  hehe

Because I don’t eat eggs, I had to come up with some kind of protein for me.  I didn’t just want a chicken breast, as that is boring for breakfast, but have not had much luck making sausage that will stay in patties if I grind the meat myself.  I have a Ninja food processor/blender system, and in the past I have tried making sausage patties by pulsing raw chicken and adding spices, but they never hold together.  Today I was wondering how to change this because grinding meat in a food processor just does not work the same as having meat ground in a meat grinder.  Well I remembered my friend Nellena telling me to add a little flour as a binder to my potato cakes the last time she came over, and I wondered if that would work as binder for meat as well.  I pulsed them ingredients until it looked like it would hold together, and put the meat in the fridge for about 10 minutes while the fruit was still cooking down to let it rest, and let the gluten work and bind.  The flour worked!  I was so stoked!  Today I actually had sausage patties.  YAY!  Two total firsts in one meal!

The pancakes were simple, but I noticed that there was more baking powder than I was used to, and because of that I think the pancakes were extremely fluffy.  I wish I would have got a better picture, or a pic with my first over easy attempt, but this is what I got before the food was devoured.  I had fun cooking it all, but the best part was that it tastes AMAZING!!!!!

Pancakes:

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 TBSP. oil or butter or margarine
1/2 tsp. salt
4 tsp. baking powder
2 TBSP. sugar (I used 2 TBSP Stevia in the Raw instead)
2 cups water
2 eggs

Mix wet ingredients together. Mix dry ingredients together in different bowl. Combine the two bowls and stir with hand or a stand mixer.  I have a new kitchen aid, and am getting all of the use of out it I can. Get all of the lumps out! Let batter rest for 5 minutes. and put some oil in the pan.  Fry the pancakes, flipping when it is full of bubbles.  These turn out a little heavy, but very thick and fluffy.  I usually hate pancakes, and I LOVE these!

Fruit topping:

3 apples

10 frozen strawberries

4 tablespoons of stevia in the raw (or sugar)

water

Vanilla

Cinnamon

Peel, core, and dice three apples.  Place them in a small pot and cover them with water.  Put in the strawberries and turn the burner on high.  They need to break down, and I kept them on a rolling boil to break down the apples a bit faster than usual. Remember to stir every few minutes so the bottom does not burn. I added the a few shakes of cinnamon, and 1/8th teaspoon vanilla, and a pinch of salt as well as the stevia.  Add more water if necessary until the fruit is cooked and broken down to your liking.  After the apples are soft,  throw about 1/2 of the mixture into the blender to break it down a bit faster if you like (or use an immersion blender), but cooking for a few hours will achieve the same effect…basically making a quick strawberry apple sauce.  Taste, add more stevia if necessary.  Serve on top of pancakes and pour melted butter either on pancakes or on top of topping…Delicious!

Sausage:

1/2 boneless skinless chicken breast

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon onion powder

a few sprinkles of sage

4 tablespoons of flour

Pulse all of the ingredients in a food processor until meat is broken down and starts sticking to itself.  In a Ninja, that takes 10 pulses or less.  Be careful not to liquify or puree the meat.  You want a little texture.  Let it rest in the fridge for 5-10 minutes to let the flour do it’s job.  Next, make patties, and throw them in a frying pan with just a little oil.  Next time I will throw a little more seasoning in them, and maybe just a touch of oil to make sure they don’t dry out.  Make sure they are cooked all the way through and serve. These are oh so good!

And I guess the last recipe is over easy eggs, but you can find directions for that anywhere… :-)

 

Stuffed Chicken Breast

20140120_193040

Last night I was looking through my ever thinning kitchen (payday is Friday)  and trying to figure out what to make with the ingredients we have.  I have been thinking about stuffed chicken breast for a while, and realized we had enough to make it that night.  The last time I made it years ago, I used goat cheese, spinach and garlic as my filling.  That was before I was married I believe, and it was the first candle lit dinner my now husband and I have ever had.

This time we had cream cheese instead so I used that.

I get Foster Farms 10 lb bags of frozen chicken breasts at Costco…and the breasts are HUGE!   I thawed out two breasts and got my filling ready.

The filling was super easy.  I sauteed some 3 cloves of garlic (lets say one or two in the future though) in a little butter.  Once that is done, throw in a large handful of spinach to wilt a little in the butter.  Once it  wilts just a little, starts turning bright green, throw the mix in the food processor with 8 oz of cream cheese (it probably could have been less).

I butterflied two chicken breasts, and split the filling between two chicken breasts.  It could probably be up to four breasts for that much filling as mine were over filled.  I used my hands to try to shape a pad of the cream cheese mixture to fit into the breast. I opened up the chicken breast and filled it up.  then I did my best to close it around the filling, and placed them into a hot pan with some butter and olive oil. I seared one side, and the other side.  Once both sides looked nice and golden brown, I put the pan into the oven at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.  Once the internal temp of the meat was 160 degrees.  The chicken opened up and some of the filling came pouring out which turned out amazing with the next step.  :-)

I put a slice or two of cheddar on top of the chicken, and broiled it until the cheese was melted and bubbly.  This caused the filling that had poured out to crisp up, and become very savory.  This also firmed up the filling and made it easier to to take out of the pan and place on a plate.

What I love most is that this entire recipe only takes 5-6 ingredients  and is actually really really easy!

stuffed chicken breasatThe chicken came out perfectly moist.  It looked nice and the flavors were great together!

3 tablespoons butter

2-4 chicken breasts

2 cups in spinach

3 cloves garlic (1-2 is good)

Panang Pumpkin Curry

Panang pumpkin curry

In March, when I came home from Korea, my husband and I went on vacation through Oregon.  Half of the places we went we were cooking Korean food, but we reconnected with my friend Niina from my first two years of college, who had just gotten home from a mission trip to Thailand.  She made one of her favorite Thai dishes and I LOVED IT!

Now when I heard what was in this dish, I was afraid to try it.  I have never had a curry I liked, nor do I enjoy pumpkin, both of which are in this recipe.  I was really worried, but wanted to be polite so I tried it.

I have wanted to make it since, but have always been worried about the cost and finding all of the ingredients.  :-)  I was right to be worried in Boise, Idaho, but I was able to play with the recipe a little and get a pretty good result.

My one substitute to Niina’s Recipe was that I could not find the curry paste.  I used a pre-assembled panang sauce rather than panang paste, because it was all I could find.  This is what I used.

Panang pumpkin curry sauce

I did add everything else in the recipe and it turned out amazing.

I will admit, I am going to be lazy and just copy and paste from Niina’s page now that I have added my substitute and her information.

I added this to jasmine rice.  and it was awesome!

3 tbsp. Panang curry paste

3 tbsp. peanut oil
2 (13.5 oz.) cans coconut milk
1 pkg. (roughly 2 lbs.) chicken fillets, thinly sliced
3 fresh garlic cloves, minced
½ large sweet onion, sliced
10 to 20 Thai Red Basil Leaves
4 c. fresh pumpkin, cubed
½ sweet red pepper, sliced
½ sweet yellow pepper, sliced
1 medium zucchini, sliced
1 asparagus bundle, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pkg. whole mushrooms
Blend curry paste and peanut oil together in wok until smooth and creamy. Slowly add coconut milk until paste turns into a thick soup. Add onions, garlic and a handful of pumpkin cubes (it will dissolve into the curry paste) and turn stove on low heat.
Use cooking scissors to cut chicken fillets thinly into the wok. Cook until chicken turns white.

Add basil leaves, sliced red and yellow peppers, cubed pumpkin, zucchini, asparagus and sliced mushrooms into the wok. Mix together and let curry simmer (stir occasionally) until the pumpkin cubes are soft (at least 30 minutes). Serve with Thai Jasmine Rice.

20131201_195849

What I noticed was that my pumpkin was not really breaking down.  I actually took a potato masher and mashed them up a bit once they were really soft.  Maybe I did not cook it long enough, but I cooked for a total of two hours, and I needed to eat.  Once did that, I cooked the chicken and added the veggies.  I cut the pumpkin in much smaller chunks when I added the other veggies, so it would cook faster.

Thank you Niina for changing my mind on both curry and pumpkin!  I love this stuff, and will be making it again!  I have more of the sauce and half a pumpkin that is going into the freezer for next time!  Yummmmmmmy!!!!!!!

 

 

Summer Strawberry Lemonade Sorbet

Strawberry Sherbet

This recipe is super easy and could be a frozen drink or a frozen dessert, depending on how much liquid you use in the recipe.

I squeezed the juice of one lemon, and blended it with half a cup of frozen strawberries and about six ice cubes in my food processor.

I added about 10 drops of Berry Sweet Leaf Stevia to it, as well as about 10 drops of the Lemon Drop flavor (to taste).

Next I used a spatula to scrape it all out into a bowl and enjoyed!
If you would like to make it a frozen drink instead of a thick dessert, just add a little water to the mix.

The perfect end to a good day of dieting!

Enjoy!

If using the Iherb.com, be sure to use my coupon code to get $10 off your first perchase:  RKW560

Chicken Sausage Cabbage Rolls

Cut open

I was going through my Omnitrition Drops cookbook today, and it mentioned sausage…it sounded good.  I got some cabbage the other day and have been meaning to make cabbage rolls, so this sounded perfect.

First problem, no ground chicken:  Solved, I made my own.  I had three thawed chicken breasts (about 24 oz) and I put them into a food processor with hot smoked paprika, rosemary, parsley, and oregano and pulsed until it was ground.  When that was done, I took it out and pulsed the onion and garlic.  then I mixed them together.

Next I sliced up 16 oz of cabbage, tomato, celery, and onion.

I cooked 16 oz of the sausage up with the veggies until the chicken and veggies were all cooked and added one tablespoon of tomato paste.

I took the outer leaves off of the head of cabbage, and one by one boiled them.  Each was in there for no more than two minutes.  When the leaves got pliable they were removed and placed on paper towels to dry.

Next I weighed the sausage and veggie mix.  I divided that by 4, and then weighed out 4 servings.  I took one serving and wrapped it up in one leaf.  This made four full cabbage rolls.

Somehow, the sausage turned out a bit sweet, but a drizzle of Franks Original Red Hot was the perfect compliment!

Before cutting

Chicken Nugets

Franks light

I will work on a better photo tomorrow!

My husband recently got a new job.  He does not have time to sit down and eat lunch every day, and really needs a grab and go style meal that is easy to eat while driving.  This is rather difficult on the HCG diet, because even if you are going low carbs, you could usually make a wrap sandwich with a tortilla at least.  He cannot have tortillas so time to get creative!

I am on a support page for all Omnitrition products, but it often is used for support the HCG plan.  I asked for suggestions on grab and go meals and the only thing I really got were a few suggestions for chicken strips or chicken nuggets.  Today I decided to try the chicken nuggets.  They were surprisingly easy, and really good!

First I turned the oven on 400 and let it pre-heat.

I used what Jeremy uses for salad dressing as the chicken dip, which is really simple to make.  The recipe is below.

I took 2 wasa crackers (I used light rye) and put it in the food processor with some onion powder, garlic powder and oregano and created bread crumbs for the breading.

I thawed out a chicken breast and weighed out 4 oz.  Once i had the correct amount, I cut them into 6 nuggets.  I next dipped the nuggets in the dressing mixture and then coated them one by one in the wasa crackers, placing them on a baking sheet when I was finished.

Next is super simple…put them in the oven for 20 minutes.  Pull them out and if you are serving immediately, use a spatula to carefully get them up off the pan without scraping off the breading.    I am serving the nuggets with Franks Red Hot Original as dipping sauce.

The nuggets are deliciously tangy.  Even though they are baked, they are packed with flavor and very easy to grab and go I hope!  I don’t even miss the oil from fried nuggets. :-)

Serve with some cool cucumber spears to cool your mouth a bit and enjoy!

Salad dressing/dipping sauce:

1 tablespoon Franks Red Hot Original

1 1/2 tablespoon Yellow mustard

splash of Apple Cider Vinegar

Nuggets

4 oz chicken breast

salad dressing above

2 wasa crackers

onion powder, oregano, garlic powder and/or other seasonings to taste

Franks Red Hot for dipping

Daikon Spaghetti and Meatballs

P2 spaghetti and meat balls

 

Well, I have not really posted anything since being back in America, other than my husband’s birthday cake.  It is time to get back to it, and work on the healthy cooking I was enjoying so much in Korea!  

Jeremy is on Phase 2 of the Omnitrition Drops right now.  This is the HCG diet that I was on in January.  He is doing amazing and has lost 20 lbs in 10 days, and is still loosing!  I will be starting again as soon as we have the money to buy another bottle of drops for me.  I have been cooking the food for two weeks now, and struggling to be creative.  I have done meatloaf, burgers, chicken 5 ways from Sunday.  

Since I am not on the diet, I am struggling to stick to the meals, as I am craving bread, pasta and potatoes.  I have been making some flat bread and tortillas for my tacos, but seem to grab chips or soda every once in a while.  

For several days I have been craving spaghetti.  I realize that is something I miss from Korea, as I won’t buy store bought tomato sauce anymore.  I used to make it often for different pastas such as spaghetti or lasagna.  This week I bought some tomatoes and the second I got htem out of the bag to put them in my fridge, I realized that they were either bruised from the bag, or just over ripe when I chose them.  I knew they needed to go into my simple yet beloved sauce!  I like to make this with fire roasted bell peppers, but since they are not allowed on phase 2 of the eating plan, I left them out for more tomatoes.  

First, I put an x shaped slit in the bottom of five tomatoes.  

I boiled them for up to one minute until the slit loosened and started peeling.  Then I put them in a bowl of ice cold water to cool off and quit cooking.  I then peeled the tomatoes (the skin comes right off), and cut the tomatoes into slices.  I put them in a crock pot on high.  I then diced up the onion into bigger chunks, and added them to the pot.  I diced up the garlic and threw it in.  I put the lid on and let this cook for 4 hours.  When it started cooking  down, and getting a little thicker, I added 1 small can of hunts tomato paste.  After it cooked for another half hour, I scooped 2 cups into my food processor.  I added the spinach in, and blended it together.  I added this mixture back into the pot, and added the spices and seasonings to taste.  I put this back into the crock pot to get it back up to temperature, and added 24 meatballs.  I let this cook for a half hour.

 

Meatballs

I began by blending up 2 wasa crackers, 2 cloves of garlic, and 1/4 of an onion in the food processor.  Then to blend, I added 1 lb of meat, and seasoning, and pureed for another 30 seconds.  

Next I weighed out about 40 meat balls from this mix, each 1/2 an oz in weight.  I cooked them in a pan with about 1/4 inch of water, stirring when needed to cook all the way through.  When I took them out of the pan, they went into a bowl that was lined with paper towels to collect any remaining grease that was on the surface.  When the sauce was ready, I put 24 into the sauce to cook for another half an hour (and lend flavor to the sauce), and the rest in the freezer for another day.  

 

Noodles

Now for the easiest part! (Well sort of). 

The hard part of this was locating the one ingredient…Daikon Radish.  I had to go to a gourmet grocery store and pay 1.89/lb for the radish, which was over 2 lbs.  

Today I peeled the radish, and then pulled out my mandolin.  I have a $10 one from Walmart, but it had the perfect attachment for spaghetti noodles.  I used it to slice over half of the radish into thin ribbons.

Next I boiled water.  The directions I was given said to gently boil for 5-7 minutes.  I set my timer for five minutes, but after three minutes, the texture resembled noodles and I tasted them.  The texture was good for noodles as well.  So after three minutes I drained the radish from it’s water and assembled my plate.  

To get a proper HCG phase 2 plate, I put 2 oz. of noodles, and 2 oz. of sauce.  Then I added 8 meatballs on top.

This is my all time favorite HCG recipe at the moment!  I have not had one I like more, which is mostly because I LOVE Pasta, and sincerely miss it!  

 

Spaghetti Sauce

5 large tomatoes

1/2 of a walla walla sweet onion (or one large onion)

4 cloves of garlic

2 cups of spinach

basil, parsley, salt to taste

splash of apple cider vinegar to taste

A few splashes of Franks Red Hot sauce (original)

6 oz Hunts tomato paste

Noodles

1 large daikon radish

Meatballs

1 lb ground beef

1/4 walla walla sweet (half a large onion)

2 cloves of garlic

2 tablespoons Sumac seasoning (1 tablespoon sumac, 1 teaspoon onion powder, 1 teaspoon garlic powder, 1 teaspoon smoked hot paprika, 1/2 teaspoon tumeric, 1/8 teaspoon salt)  I make this mix myself.  (This is optional, season meatballs however you like)

1 food scale

2 wasa crackers (I used lite rye)