Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Asian Meatballs

 I love Asian flavors and this one has a perfect balance of sweet and spicy. You may need to double or triple this recipe if you are having a large crowd. If you are a cry baby about spice then you can delete the hot chile sauce. I love spice myself but it's not for everyone. Also I thought these would taste good over some Asian noodles. Yummy appetizer or a dinner, it's your choice.

Asian Meatballs

  • 20.8 oz. pkg. Shady Brook Farms ground turkey, 93% lean
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic from jar
  • 2 tsp. freshly grated ginger root
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 green onions sliced thin, green tops too
  • 1/8 cup  cilantro freshly chopped 
  • 3 Tbsp. Kikoman teriyaki sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. Tuong ot Sriracha hot chili sauce
  • 1 8 oz. can crushed pineapple, undrained
  • 2/3 cup hoisen sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp. soy sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Then mix together the first seven ingredients. Roll into mini, about 1 1/4 inch, meatballs. Place meatballs on an oil sprayed cookie sheet with sides. when all meatballs are done place in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until no longer pink in center.

While meatballs are baking mix together the remaining six ingredients in a large saucepan over low heat and cook on low stirring occasionally until meatballs are cooked, do not boil. When meatballs are cooked toss into the sauce making sure they are coated well and serve immediately. You may transfer them to a crockpot on low or a chafing dish. 

You may make this in advance if you wish. It will make about 3 dozen meatballs. Also I like to store my ginger root in the freezer, it makes it easier to grate and it lasts longer.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Amish Macaroni Salad

This recipe is by far one of the best out there for mac salad. It was a favorite of my Mom's and she used to ask me to make this for her.  RIP Mom. My Mom was a great cook so whenever she asked me to make her something, it was an honor. I also credit my Mom for my love of cooking. Every time I make this someone always asks me for the recipe. You know why, it's because it is so darn good. The sweetness of the dressing and the perfect blend of crunchy veggies will draw you in, big time. It's like a song for your taste buds, sweet and smooth. So let those taste buds start to sing.

Amish Macaroni Salad

Cooked Salad Dressing:
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar or Splenda*
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 Tbsp. prepared yellow mustard
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 4 Tbsp butter

In a medium size saucepan over medium heat melt the butter. Add mustard, vinegar, salt, sugar OR Splenda and eggs. You will need a small wire whisk to mix well and stir constantly. If you cook over too high of heat you will get golden brown chips in there. I've done that before and rescued it by lowering the heat and then strained through a wire mesh to remove caramelized chips.  Boil until it thickens, remove from heat and cool. Chill covered in fridge for now

  • 1 box Ronzoni Smart taste elbow macaroni, 14.5 oz.*
  • 1/2 cup diced celery
  • 1/2 cup diced sweet onion
  • 1 small green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large carrot, shredded
  • 2 cups Hellman's light or Fit & Active light mayonnaise (Aldi brand)*

Follow cooking directions on box, except cook the  macaroni for 12 minutes, I like to overcook the noodles to make them tender. 

Mix the Mayonnaise together with the cooked salad dressing until mixed well.  In a large bowl mix together Macaroni, onion, celery, pepper now add the mayonnaise mixture. Chill overnight in a large sealed container.

*I have cut back on calories and fat by using low fat mayo, high fiber pasta and Splenda instead of sugar. It still gets rave reviews every time.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Tomato Watermelon Salad

Tomato and watermelon may seem like an unlikely combo but I am here to tell you that it works. The two textures and flavors really compliment one another. This is the time of year when we are looking for a cool refreshing salad and this one steps up to the plate. Another bonus is that it's quick and easy to make too. Chill out and enjoy!

Tomato and Watermelon Salad

  • 2 pints grape tomatoes, cut in half
  • 6 cups cubed watermelon
  • 1 small red onion, quartered and sliced thin
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • ½ cup white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. sugar
  • ½ tsp. Fleur de Sel salt

Wash tomatoes then slice in half and add to a large mixing bowl. Cube up watermelon, slice onion and add to tomatoes. In a measuring cup mix together oil, vinegar, sugar and salt then mix well with a small wire whisk. Pour over top of tomato mixture and stir well. Cover and chill for several hours or overnight. Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Bruschetta Chicken Sandwich

I found this lovely sandwich at the Red Robin Restaurants and quickly became addicted to it. I love those big fat french fries that they serve with the sandwich too, but my waistline does not. So since I have zero will power when those fries are in front of me, I thought maybe I should try to make this one at home. Well I'm happy to say I nailed it on the first try! I just love when that happens. I made it a little healthier by using lower fat cheese and mayo. My mouth is watering just thinking about how good this sandwich is. So maybe you too will become a Bruschetta Chicken Sandwich addict like me. Get your fix here.

Bruschetta Chicken Sandwich
  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 4 Ciabatta rolls
  • 4 slices provolone cheese
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • ½ small red onion, diced
  • fresh basil, chopped
  • ½ cup, plus 5 Tbsp. mayonnaisse
  • 1 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 pkg. Knorr Pesto Sauce mix 
  • 1 large garlic clove, peeled

The night before or early in the day mix together the Pesto sauce mix with ½ cup of the mayo. Mix together well with a whisk and cover, then refrigerate. Do the same with the 1 Tbsp. of the Balsamic vinegar and 5 Tbsp. of Mayonaisse but place Balsamic mayo into a small ziploc bag and refrigerate. This will make your Pesto Mayonaisse and Balsamic Mayonaisse.

I like to cook our chicken on our gas grill for about 7 minutes on each side over a high heat or until no longer pink in center.  You may also bake in oven for 350 degrees for about 30 minutes or until no longer pink in center. The last minute or two add a provolone slice and let it melt over chicken.

Meanwhile, while chicken is cooking, make the tomato garnish. Add to a small bowl the chopped romas, diced red onion and freshly chopped basil to taste.

About the last 3-4 minutes of grilling the chicken is when you will want to toast the inside of the rolls for about 3-4 minutes. If you are cooking inside broil for about 4 minutes when chicken is done baking. When rolls are toasted remove from and rub garlic back and forth into toasted sides of roll to add garlic flavor.

Prepare sandwiches by spreading Pesto mayo on the toasted sides of the rolls, then add chicken breast. Cut a small corner off of the ziploc bag and squeeze the balsamic mayo back and forth over top in a zig zag motion. Evenly divide the tomato mixture over the top of the other half of the roll and serve open faced.

I used Sargento's reduced fat cheese slices and Hellman's light mayonaisse.