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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Creamy Taco Mac (Healthy Hamburger Helper)

This is a healthy version of what could be called a 'box dinner replica.' It was nice and easy for a weeknight and we all really enjoyed it! It makes a lot too; so plan on leftovers!

1¼ lbs. ground turkey
8 oz. whole wheat pasta shapes (any shape)
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (14 oz.) can reduced sodium diced tomatoes, drained
4 tbsp. taco seasoning
3 oz. fat free cream cheese
½ cup fat free sour cream
Shredded cheddar cheese (optional) - I didn't add this and we didn't miss it.

Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook pasta according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of pasta water. Set aside.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet or sauté pan, cook the ground turkey over medium-high heat until no longer pink. A few minutes before the turkey is cooked through, add the chopped onion to the skillet. Once the turkey is cooked through, mix in the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Mix in the diced tomatoes and taco seasoning and let simmer over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Stir in the cooked pasta, cream cheese, sour cream and reserved pasta water, and continue stirring until the cream cheese is melted and the sauce is well blended. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Simmer over medium-low heat 3-5 minutes to reduce the sauce a bit. Remove from the heat and top with shredded cheddar cheese, if desired.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

White Pizza with Tomato & Basil

One of the best pizzas we've ever made! Only 352 calories per serving (2 slices per serving).

1 (10oz) thin pizza crust (or you can make your own if you are talented like Holly) :)
1 teaspoon cornmeal
cooking spray
3 TBS pesto with basil
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup part skim ricotta cheese
1/2 cup sliced small tomatoes (we used Campari)
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup small basil leaves (dried basil is ok too)
crushed red pepper (optional)

1. Preheat broiler to high.
2. Place a baking sheet in the oven; heat for 10 minutes.
3. While baking sheet heats, place crust on another baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Lightly coat crust with cooking spray. Spread pesto evenly over crust, leaving a 1" border. Sprinkle mozzarella evenly over pesto. Dollop ricotta by teaspoonfuls over the mozzarella.
4. Slide crust onto preheated baking sheet.
5. Broil 5 inches from heat for 5 minutes or until the cheese starts to melt. Remove from oven.
6. Top evenly with tomatoes, black pepper and basil. Add crushed red pepper if desired.

Beef Broccoli Stir Fry

This recipe is from the Cooking Light magazine. We've been trying different stir fry recipes lately and I think this one is our favorite (even my 6 year old liked it, which is unusual for a stir fry). Extremely flavorful and very satisfying. 476 calories & 12.9 grams of fat per serving. Makes 4 servings.
  • 2 (3 1/2-ounce) bags boil-in-bag long-grain white rice or brown rice
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry, divided
  • 2 tablespoons lower-sodium soy sauce, divided
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 pound boneless sirloin steak, cut diagonally across grain into thin slices
  • 1/2 cup lower-sodium beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon hoisin sauce (you can buy it premade or you can make it yourself)
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • 1 tablespoon bottled ground fresh ginger
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 4 cups prechopped broccoli florets
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup sliced green onions

1. Cook rice according to directions.

2. While rice cooks, combine 1 tablespoon sherry, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, sugar, and beef in a bowl. Stir to combine. Set aside. Stir together 1 tablespoon sherry, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, the beef broth, cornstarch, hoisin, and crushed red pepper in a small bowl.

3. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef mixture; sauté 3 minutes or until browned. Remove beef from pan. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan. Add ginger and garlic; cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Add broccoli and 1/4 cup water; cook 1 minute. Add green onions; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add broth mixture and beef mixture; cook 2 minutes or until beef is thoroughly heated and sauce is slightly thick. Serve beef mixture over rice.

*Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light Magazine

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Italian Sausage Rigatoni

One word - YUM.   Also not bad on the wallet.   Fed 4 of us for dinner and gave us lunch leftovers the next day.

1 package of Italian Turkey Sausage (sweet or hot - I prefer sweet for the kids)
1 package of Rigatoni pasta
3 TBS olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 red pepper, finely chopped
1 jar of your favorite pasta sauce (we used Classico Tomato & Basil)
2 TBS parsley, chopped

Cook sausage according to directions.  Sometimes I grill them but usually I cook them on the stove with a little bit of low calorie Italian dressing.  Enhances the flavor even more!

After cooking, coin slice them and keep warm.

Cook pasta according to directions. Drain well.

 In a large pan, place olive oil and garlic, saute lightly for 2 minutes. Add the red peppers and cook until tender-crisp. Stir occasionally. 

Add the cooked sausage and pasta sauce to the pan with the peppers and stir well.  Saute for 3-4 minutes.  Then mix with the drained pasta in a large bowl. Top with parsley.

*Recipe adapted from Taste of Home Magazine