Monday, February 24, 2014

Broiled Salmon with Thai Sweet Chili Glaze

Review by Lyndee:

1-1/2 pounds (or four 6-ounce pieces) salmon, skin on or off
6 tablespoons Thai Sweet Chili Sauce (best quality, such as Mae Ploy or Thai Kitchen)
3 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon peeled and finely grated fresh ginger
1-2 scallions, green parts only, finely sliced

Set oven rack 5-6 inches from top (in my oven, it's the second highest rung) and preheat broiler.   Make marinade by combining sweet chili sauce, soy sauce and ginger in a shallow baking dish. Spoon 1/4 cup marinade into a small dish and set aside (this will be the sauce for the cooked fish). Add salmon fillets, skin side up, to remaining marinade and marinate for 1 hour in refrigerator. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Transfer salmon fillets to prepared baking sheet, skin side down, and drizzle a bit of the marinade over top. Go easy -- you don't want it to pool too much on the baking sheet because it will burn in the oven. Broil salmon for 6-10 minutes, or until browned in spots and almost opaque in the center. Transfer salmon to serving platter and pour reserved sauce over top. Garnish with scallions and serve hot.
I mixed my glaze together and used it on a pre-made salmon burger patty.  I put the patty in the pan on medium heat and put half the glaze on the top.  I flipped it after 3-4 minutes and cooked for another 3-4 minutes.  Then poured the rest of the glaze on and topped with green onions.  It was awesome! Easy to make, healthy and quick. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Peanut butter banana smoothie

Review by Lyndee:

I needed a post workout snack last night and proudly refused the temptation of girl scout cookies and ice cream that was in the house.  I decided to throw a smoothie together and it turned out pretty well for winging it.

1 cup almond milk
Ice cubes
4 baby spinach leaves
2 tbsp PB2
½ a banana sliced up
2 drops of chocolate syrup

I made this in my magic bullet.  Add all ingredients and blend.  Super easy, nutritious and you don’t even taste the spinach! 

Chili Lime Salmon

Review by Lyndee:

Most nights for dinner I have a salmon burger and sometimes, although I love them and the protein they provide, my tongue starts to get bored. Last night I tried this recipe for a chili lime salmon. I didn’t have a pound of fresh salmon on hand but I used it on my frozen salmon burger (thank you Costco) and it turned out really well. 

1 lb. fresh salmon filet
2 limes
2 tsp. chili powder
1/4 tsp. salt Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray. Lay the salmon, scale side down in the baking dish. Squeeze the juice from one of the limes over the salmon. Season by sprinkling the chili powder and salt over the salmon. Bake in the preheated oven for 12-15 minutes, until salmon flakes easily with a fork. 4. Serve with remaining lime, cut into slices or wedges.  Or, you can do what I did.  Prepare the salmon as directed and then cook in a pan on the stove top for 3-4 minutes on each side.  It was a nice change of flavor and super easy to do. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

In-N-Out double double mini sliders

Review by Lyndee:

My favorite burger in the world is a double double from In-N-Out burger.  Unfortunately, now that I live in Iowa again, there isn’t one within 15 hours of me. Sigh. Insert sad face here.  I’ve been craving one so bad I can almost taste it…almost.  So I decided to try a copycat recipe.  But let’s face it, no one really NEEDS a double double, fries and a shake.  Right? So last night I attempted a double double mini, or slider, if you will.  Here is the link to the original recipe I found.  And below is my version as healthy as I could make it.  Note, I don’t eat onions so I didn’t do mine animal style but you can find those directions in the link. 

¼ cup mayo (I used fat free)
2 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp sweet pickle relish
½ tsp white vinegar
¼ cup yellow mustard
4 slices of American cheese
1 pound ground beef (formed into eight 2 oz mini patties)
4 tea rolls (I used Hawaiian Sweet rolls)
Dill pickle slices

Mix the mayo, ketchup, relish and vinegar in a bowl; set aside.  Shape the beef into mini patties.  Cut the rolls in half and give a few squirts of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter spray, place butter side down into a nonstick skillet until lightly toasted.  Season the meat patties with salt and pepper.  Cook for 3 minutes.  Dip a basting brush into your mustard and spread on the uncooked side of each patty.  Then flip and top with ½ a slice of cheese.  Continue cooking about 2 more minutes.  Stack on your bun and add pickle.  Dip in your “spread” mixture (rather than slathering your burger in it) and enjoy!!

This tasted amazing! Very close to the real thing and I didn’t have to wait in the drive thru line or travel to the West coast to get it.  Yum! My mini burger was super filling. And you wouldn’t have to do a double double.  You could do just a small single patty as well.  

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Firecracker Shrimp

Review by Lyndee:

I love seafood.  All of it.  But especially shrimp! When I saw this recipe I was pretty excited to try it.  It was easy to make and pretty dang tasty.

1 cup of mayonnaise (I used fat free)
¼ cup of Thai Sweet Chili Sauce
1 tablespoon of Hot Sauce
1 pound of frozen fried popcorn shrimp
Chopped lettuce
½ cup of chopped scallions

Preheat your oven per package directions on your popcorn shrimp. Spread the frozen shrimp out on your cookie sheet in a single layer and bake according to package directions.

While shrimp is baking, mix your sauce. First, mix your mayonnaise with the Thai Sweet Chili Sauce. Add Sriracha. Mix well.

Once shrimp is cooked, allow for a few minutes to cool. Toss the shrimp in the mixing bowl so it gets coated with the mixture. On a separate plate, make a bed from your chopped lettuce. Once your shrimp is coated, lay it out on your bed of lettuce for some lovely presentation. Sprinkle with chopped scallions.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Taco cups

Review by Lyndee:

We had some leftover taco meat and I decided to make a snack last night.  It turned out great and would be a fun appetizer for your next party. 

Scoops tortilla chips
Ground beef (seasoned with a taco packet)-you could also use ground turkey or shredded chicken breast
Shredded cheddar or Mexican mix cheese
Sour cream
Optional: onions, tomatoes, lettuce and other taco fixings

Add warm meat to your scoop.  Sprinkle on some shredded cheese.  Bake in the oven at 350 for four-five minutes.  The cheese will start to melt and the scoops will begin to brown a bit.  Make sure not to cook them too long or you will burn your chips! Remove from oven and garnish with your favorite taco toppings. I did sour cream and salsa.  Delicious! It doesn’t get much easier than that.  

Valentines cookies

Review by Lyndee:

I wanted to do some fun cookies for valentine’s day. I had the idea of doing the muffin tin cookies my mom makes where she puts either a peanut butter cup or chocolate kiss in the cookie.  Hers are delicious! So my thought was to make chocolate chip cookies and top them with a chocolate heart for the holiday.  Sounds easy, right? Well, I’ve never been able to master muffin tin cookies.

Start with your favorite chocolate chip or peanut butter cookie recipe.  You can use a store bought dough as well. I love these paradise cookies I’ve made before.  The recipe I found said to roll into one inch balls and place in an ungreased muffin tin. Bake for 8 minutes at 375 degrees.  Take out of the oven and immediately place your unwrapped candy on top. 

I took the cookies out at 8 minutes but probably should’ve went 10.  When I started placing the candy’s on them, the middles sunk.  But I figured maybe that was supposed to happen to some degree.

I tried the next batch on a normal cookie sheet instead of the muffin tin and that went better.  The problem was, the candy started melting into blogs. A friend said, I should’ve put them in the freezer or fridge to set but this was too little info, too late.  So my cookies no longer look like they are sporting fancy chocolate hearts, but rather, big chocolate blobs of goo.  Sigh. 

While they still taste really good, they vanity and fun of what I was trying to accomplish was gone.  Next time I will cook the muffin tin cookies for 10-12 minutes and then chill to set the candies.  Lesson learned.  

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Pizza Dip

Review by: Lyndee

2 8 oz blocks cream cheese (I used reduced fat)
2 tbsp sour cream (mine was sour cream and chives)
2 tbsp parmesan cheese
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
20 pepperonis
1 cup mozzarella or pizza blend shredded cheese
Optional-anything else you would like on a pizza such as onions, garlic, sausage, peppers, olives, etc.

Combine two blocks of room temperature cream cheese, sour cream, parmesan and Italian seasoning.  Dice up half the pepperonis into small pieces and mix into your cream cheese base.  Once well mixed spread into the bottom of a baking dish or crockpot. Top with shredded cheese.  Top that with the remaining pepperoni.  Bake at 350 until golden brown or in crockpot until the top cheese layer is completely melted.  Serve with crackers or small slices of bread. 

This dip is easy to throw together and was a huge hit at our Superbowl party, which is good since the game was boring.  I did a basic pepperoni dip but feel free to add whatever pizza toppings your family loves.  This dip goes a long way and is ooey gooey goodness.  

World’s easiest crockpot roast recipe

Review by Lyndee:

It doesn’t matter if you aren’t a whiz in the kitchen, it would be really hard to mess this recipe up and that’s pretty much awesome.

1 pork roast (3-4 pounds)
1 can of Coke or Pepsi
Salt & pepper
Diced onion (optional)

Place roast in crockpot.  Add one can of cola. I used Pepsi because that’s what we had in the fridge.  I placed a few diced onions on top of the roast and then sprinkled with salt and pepper.  Set the crockpot to cook on low for 8 hours. 

We wanted to make a roast the other day in the crockpot.  I didn’t have any potatoes and carrots on hand, which I would usually pair with it.  So I went online and searched these “pop can roasts” I had heard so much about.  All the reviews were great but I was still skeptical.  After 8 hours when I went to pull the roast out, it was so tender it fell into pieces.  It tasted delicious too! We put a big dent in it that night, paired with some tater tots.  Then ate the rest up throughout the week with some barbeque sauce on sandwiches.  It was awesome both ways. It doesn’t get much easier than that to make a yummy roast on a cold winter day.