Archive | March, 2012

Mashed Cauliflower

27 Mar

Cauliflower is not on my husbands food group list. Since he is avoiding white potatoes, he has not eaten smashed potatoes in a long time. He enjoyed mashed cauliflower enough for me make it again. The friends that were testing the recipe with us loved it. Hope you will also.

  • 1 large head of cauliflower or 2 small ones
  • 1/2 cup fat free milk
  • 1/2 cup fat free sour cream
  • pinch of sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder

Divide the cauliflower into florets. Steam the florets for 15-20 minutes or until tender. Do not over cook. Drain the cauliflower and return   to the pan and the milk. Using an emerson  blender, puree the cauliflower. Add the sour cream and seasonings, stir. Cook over medium low heat 10 minutes.


Grilled Okra

25 Mar

Okra, also known as “lady fingers”, can be slimy and gooey. I never liked okra until a friend, who owns several Southern style restaurants , grilled some for us one evening. The key is to buy small okra and grill it until it is charred.

  • 1 pound of okra
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Rinse and dry the okra and place it in a bowl. Coat okra lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the okra on  grill or on grill pan on stove top on medium high heat. Grill until charred.

Healthy Oatmeal Peanut Butter Cookies

24 Mar

Who does not love cookies straight out of the oven. These cookies are so good that my taste testers could not believe that the recipe has not added fats or sugar. Just make sure that you don’t over bake them. Mix these together:

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup natural peanut butter (heaping 1/2 cup )
  • 1/2 cup Trivia
  • 1/4 cup egg substitute
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla

Mix these together:

  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1  1/4 cups rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour

Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, blend well with a spoon. Drop teaspoonfuls of batter onto parchment paper lined cookie sheets and flatten cookies slightly. Bake in 350 degree oven 10-12 minutes. Make sure cookies are soft to touch when you take them out of the oven.

Sweet and Hot Rub Salmon

22 Mar

Salmon pairs very well with sweet and spicy.  Cayenne is traditionally used by herbalists to cure stomach aches, cramping, gas, varicose veins, allergies, and constipation. One of the most amazing healing properties of cayenne is that it has been used successfully time and time again to relieve heart attacks. My husband could care less about health benefits of spice, he just happens to love spicy foods. I am a spicy food wimp, but I can handle this recipe. It is a good combination of sweet and hot. I guess we could say it is a dish for the Nordic and the Southerner.

  • 1 fillet of salmon
  • 1 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbs brown sugar
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
Mix all the spices together. Wear rubber gloves and rub the spice mix all over the salmon. Bake in 400 degree oven for 20 minutes or grill.

Irish Soda Bread

16 Mar

Happy St. Patrick’s day, especially to my dear Irish friends. This bread is quick and easy to make any day.

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tablespoons of fat-free milk
  • 2 tbs honey
  • 8 oz of plain fat-free yogurt

Combine all the dry ingredients together in a large bowl; stir well. Combine milk, honey, and yogurt stirring well; add to dry ingredients, stirring just until moistened. Dough will be sticky. Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly 3-4 times. Roll dough into 7-8 inch circle. Place on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet. Make 8 (1/4 inch deep) cuts in a spoke form across the top of the dough with a sharp knife. Bake at  375 degree oven for 20 minutes or until loaf sounds hollow when tapped.

Strawberry Basil Salad

15 Mar

I am very lucky to live next to the Strawberry Capital of Florida, Plant City. Berries are very reasonable this time of the year. Today I made very refreshing salad dressing with fresh strawberries. I love Florida. Please remind me this in few months when I am complaining about the heat and humidity.

Strawberry Dressing

  • 1 cup sliced strawberries
  • 3 tbs red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper
  • 2 tbs fresh basil chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh lime or lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Mix all the ingredients together in a blender or food processor.


  • Mixed greens
  • 1 carrot, gradated
  • 1 cup strawberries sliced

Toss the greens and carrots with the dressing. Top with sliced strawberries.

Fat Free Sugar Free Peanut Butter Brownies

15 Mar

It is a challenge to try to bake healthier desserts. I wanted to bake a dessert for my chocolate and peanut butter loving husband and a  friend, Kris, who is a diabetic. Here is my creation after two “test drives”.

Brownie Mix

  • ¾ cup flour (mix half whole wheat and half white flour)
  • 6 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup Truvia
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2  small containers of prune baby food
  • 1/3 cup egg substitute
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • 3 ounces fat free cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup natural peanut butter
  • 3 tbs Truvia
  • 1/4 cup egg subsitute
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine flour, cocoa, Truvia, and salt. Stir in prunes, vanilla, and egg substitute. Spray an 8 x 8 pan with cooking spray, spread  the batter evenly in the pan. Mix smooth the ingredients for the filling. Drop spoonfuls of the filling on top of the batter. Run a knife on top in swirly motion. Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for about 20 minutes, or until the edges are firm and the center almost set. Serve warm.

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