Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Fire-Seared Antipasto Platter

Yum-o!!! We tried this the other night and Laith, Kallen, and I ate most of it!! We did not even feel bad because it is 97% vegetables!!! So good!!!!

Fire-Seared Antipasto Platter from Cooking Light


4 servings (serving size: about 4 ounces eggplant, 1 tomato half, 2 bell pepper halves, 1/2 zucchini, 1/4 onion, 1 ounce prosciutto, 1/4 ounce capocollo, 1/2 ounce mozzarella, 1 1/2 teaspoons basil, 1/2 teaspoon capers, 1 1/2 olives, and 1 tablespoon marinade)


  • Dressing:
  • 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • Vegetables:
  • 3 plum tomatoes, halved
  • 2 red bell peppers, quartered and seeded
  • 2 yellow bell peppers, quartered and seeded
  • 2 zucchini, cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1 red onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1 (1 1/2-pound) eggplant, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • Cooking spray

  • Garnishes:
  • 4 ounces prosciutto, thinly sliced
  • 1 ounce capocollo, thinly sliced
  • 2 ounces fresh mozzarella cheese, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 2 teaspoons capers
  • 6 green olives, sliced
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt


1. Prepare grill to medium-high heat.

2. To prepare dressing, combine first 5 ingredients in a bowl, stirring with a whisk.

3. To prepare vegetables, brush 1/4 cup dressing evenly over tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, onion, and eggplant. Place vegetables on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 5 minutes on each side or until lightly charred. ****It took longer than 5 minutes; just keep a diligent watch so the veggies do not burn****

Arrange vegetables on platter; brush with remaining dressing. Arrange prosciutto, capocollo, and cheese on platter. Sprinkle platter with basil, capers, olives, and 1/8 teaspoon salt.

Wine note: Easygoing tannins make northern Italy's Valpolicella the go-to red wine for cured meats. Without the use of oak, Tenuta Sant'Antonio Nanfré Valpolicella 2007 ($13) lets its fruit flavors shine. The cherry flavors and earthy notes meld beautifully with the charred vegetables. —Jeffery Lindenmuth

Nutritional Information

13.2g (sat 4.6g,mono 5.5g,poly 1.6g)

Pasta with Zucchini and Toasted Almonds

Pasta with Zucchini and Toasted Almonds from Cooking Light


4 servings


  • 2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallots
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon sugar
  • 5 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 (9-ounce) package refrigerated linguine
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
  • 3 cups chopped zucchini (about 1 pound)
  • 3/4 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint, divided
  • 1/3 cup (1 1/2 ounces) grated fresh pecorino Romano cheese
  • 3 tablespoons sliced almonds, toasted


1. Combine first 7 ingredients in a medium bowl. Add 2 teaspoons oil, tossing to coat.

2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well.

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan, swirling to coat. Add garlic to pan; sauté 30 seconds. Add zucchini; sauté 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Add broth; bring to a simmer. Stir in pasta and 1 1/2 tablespoons mint; toss well. Remove from heat; stir in tomato mixture. Place 1 1/2 cups pasta mixture in each of 4 bowls; top evenly with remaining 1 1/2 tablespoons mint. Sprinkle each serving with 4 teaspoons cheese and 2 teaspoons almonds.

Olive tapenade breadsticks: Combine 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic, 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, and 15 finely chopped pitted kalamata olives in a small bowl. Spread olive mixture over 1 (11-ounce) can refrigerated breadsticks dough. Twist each breadstick; bake at 375° for 15 minutes or until browned.

Nutritional Information

12.7g (sat 3.1g,mono 6.6g,poly 2g)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Flag Cake

my version; less than perfect blueberries and lines aren't as straight, but it sure tasted good!

Flag Cake
professional version
  • Cake:
  • Zest and juice of 2 lemons
  • 2 boxes (18.25 ounces each) white cake mix
  • 6 large egg whites
  • 1 teaspoon lemon extract
  • Frosting:
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening, at room temperature
  • 2 boxes (1 pound each) confectioners' sugar
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • Decoration:
  • 3/4 cup fresh blueberries, washed and dried
  • 3 cups fresh large raspberries, washed and dried


1. Cake: Heat oven to 350°. Coat two 15 x 10-inch jelly-roll pans with nonstick cooking spray. Pour lemon juice into 4-cup measuring cup; add enough water to equal 22/3 cups.

2. In large bowl, beat cake mixes, egg whites, lemon zest, juice-water mixture and lemon extract to blend, about 3 minutes. Divide evenly between two prepared pans; smooth tops.

3. Bake at 350° until cake springs back when lightly touched, about 20 minutes. Let cool on wire racks 10 minutes. Place rack over each cake. Carefully invert cakes and racks and remove pans from cakes. Let cool to room temperature. If making ahead, wrap cooled layers in plastic wrap; refrigerate for several days. Bring to room temperature before proceeding.

4. Frosting: Beat butter and shortening in large bowl 1 to 2 minutes, until fluffy. Add confectioners' sugar, milk and lemon juice. Continue beating on low until well blended and good spreading consistency, adding more milk a teaspoon at a time.

5. Decoration: Place one layer on serving tray. Reserve 1 cup frosting for piping. Frost layer with 1 cup frosting; top with second layer; frost top and sides. Place reserved frosting in pastry bag with a star tip.

6. Mark off a field for "stars" with toothpicks—6 inches across and 5 inches down. Fill in with blueberries.

7. Place seven red "stripes" of raspberries on cake as shown, leaving equal spacing for 6 white "stripes" between them. Carefully pipe white frosting "stripes" between the rows of raspberries. Refrigerate uncovered to set frosting, then loosely cover with nonstick aluminum foil. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Let stand at room temperature for about 20 minutes before serving.

**I changed this a bit since I didn't have 15x10 pans by halving the recipe and using a 9x13 pan; just one layer. Instead of using a decorating bag, I put the frosting in a plastic sandwich bag, and it turned out okay. We loved this! The cake itself is light and fresh with the lemon and egg whites, and the frosting is sweet; a good balance.

Bruschetta Gorgonzola and Apples

12 servings (serving size: 1 bruschetta and 2 apple wedges)


  • 1/3 cup (about 1 1/2 ounces) crumbled Gorgonzola cheese
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon brandy or cognac
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 12 (1-ounce) slices diagonally cut French bread (about 1 inch thick)
  • Cooking spray
  • 6 garlic cloves, halved (forgot!)
  • 3 Granny Smith apples, each cut into 8 wedges (about 18 ounces)


Prepare grill.

Combine first 4 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring until blended.

Place bread slices on grill rack coated with cooking spray; cook 2 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Remove from grill. Rub cut sides of garlic over one side of each bread slice. Spread 2 teaspoons cheese mixture over each bread slice. Serve with apple wedges.

Nutritional Information

Calories:148 (30% from fat)
Fat:5g (sat 2.7g,mono 0.9g,poly 0.3g)
*This is a different, easy way to do Bruschetta. It was very tasty, and I am not a huge fan of any blue cheese!

Chicken Kebabs with Grilled Corn

1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 2-inch pieces
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
1 tablespoon olive oil
kosher salt and black pepper
4 ears corn, husks removed

*Heat grill to medium-high. In a bowl, toss the chicken, garlic, thyme, olive oil and 1/2 tsp each of salt and pepper. Thread the corn on skewers.
*Grill chicken and corn, turning occasionally, until chicken is cooked through and corn is charred, 7-10 minutes for both. (On our Holland Grill, this took about 45 minutes.)

**This was really simple and a very tasty way to do the chicken!

Farm Stand Potato Salad

8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)


  • Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon country-style Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds

  • Salad:
  • 1 3/4 pounds fingerling potatoes (used baby reds)
  • 1 cup sugar snap peas, trimmed
  • 1 cup broccoli florets
  • 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup diced yellow bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped green onions


To prepare dressing, combine first 6 ingredients, stirring with a whisk.

To prepare salad, place potatoes in a saucepan, and cover with water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes or until tender. Remove potatoes from pan with a slotted spoon. Add peas and broccoli florets to pan. Cook 1 minute; drain.

Cut potatoes into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Combine potatoes, peas, broccoli, bell peppers, and green onions in a large bowl. Add dressing; toss well.

Nutritional Information

Calories:120 (29% from fat)
Fat:3.8g (sat 0.5g,mono 2.6g,poly 0.4g)
*We loved this! It's a really light, fresh version of potato salad-and obviously a lot healthier. And, it looks great with all the different colors, too!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Teo's Punch

Add some rum to this simple punch for a decidedly adult enhancement.
10 servings (serving size: about 1 cup)


  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 2 (6-ounce) cans pineapple juice
  • 1 (12-ounce) can thawed cranberry juice concentrate, undiluted
  • 1 (6-ounce) can thawed orange juice concentrate, undiluted
  • 4 cups club soda, chilled


Combine first 4 ingredients; stir until blended. Add soda just before serving. Serve over ice.

Nutritional Information

Calories:134 (1% from fat)
Fat:0.1g (sat 0.0g,mono 0.0g,poly 0.1g)