In college, Chinese takeout used to be a staple of mine. But now that I eat lighter and smarter, creating healthier versions of my favorite Chinese fast foods became a top priority.
Chicken and Broccoli Stir Fry was a meal I used to eat a lot, because I assumed it was one of the “healthier” choices, having chicken and broccoli in it. Little did I know. But now I can make my own light and healthy Chicken Broccoli Stir Fry for a lot less Points and with minimal effort. This stir fry tastes authentically delicious….even my kids gobbled it up! And at just 6 Smart Points per serving, I’m able to enjoy one of my favorite Chinese foods without ruining my day.
Polenta was one of those things that I wasn’t a huge fan of the first time I tried it. I don’t remember exactly how I made it, but it involved premade polenta, slicing it, frying it and topping it with something. It wasn’t great. However, when you make your own polenta and it’s creamy with a little cheese, it’s really delicious. Then you can use it as a base for just about everything – herbed mushrooms, spicy Cajun shrimp, meatballs, and anything else you can think of. It really doesn’t take long to make. You just have to bring the milk and water to a boil and then stir in the polenta. Make sure to keep stirring the polenta or it’ll burn to the bottom of the pan. Polenta is a great option for vegetarians as well as folks who can’t have gluten. Since it’s made from corn, it’s naturally gluten free. You can also mix it into quinoa and add berries and honey (plus a little vanilla and skip the cheese) to make a delicious breakfast cereal. But for now, try this delicious creamy polenta topped with sautéed herbed mushrooms.
Crepes are wonderful. You can fill them with just about anything and they’re really delicious. Quite often we fill our crepes with yogurt and fresh fruit or a fruit sauce. We’ve also made Eggs Benedict in crepes. Really, the filling options are endless. These savory crepes are simple and delicious as well as being vegetarian. The spinach and mushroom filling sautéed in butter with onions adds wonderful flavor. They are savory and rich without being overwhelming. Crepes can be a little difficult to get the hang of at first, but don’t worry. This recipe makes about 15 crepes, but you’ll only need 12 of them for the filling. That gives you a couple of extra crepes to get the heat right, as well as figuring out how to swirl the batter in the pan. The batter will be very thin, so it’ll spread out on the bottom of the pan well. However, your first crepes might still be a little strange. I always know that no matter how many times I’ve made crepes the first one or two will be terrible, then I’ll get the heat just right and they’ll go really well. Crepes hold over well, so you don’t need to fill them if you aren’t going to eat them, just keep the filling and crepes separate. Fill the crepes and heat as needed for a snack, lunch or breakfast the next day.
What better way to get in a nice big serving of veggies than to serve them atop noodles with a delicious Asian-style sauce smothering everything! This Savory Vegetable Stir Fry dish has become a family favorite of ours because not only is it healthy and delicious, but it’s a breeze to prepare. Feel free to mix it up with the veggies and toss in whatever you have on hand. It also works great with cauliflower, bok choy, zucchini, carrots, and snap peas. You could also serve this over brown rice or quinoa if preferred, and it reheats brilliantly the next day, so make sure to make some extra for leftovers!
Sometimes, you just need to splurge. Beef Wellington is one of my splurge meals. Beef Wellington is a beautiful dish to make. It’s actually really simple to make, and it’s so elegant and incredibly delicious. Searing the beef tenderloin seals in all of the juices, keeping the tenderloin juicy. I like to cook mine until it’s just a little pink in the middle, but it’s easy to adjust that for individual taste. If you have someone that likes theirs very well done (or very rare), you can just make individual Wellingtons by slicing the tenderloin before you seal it in the pastry. Serving this with a fresh salad and steamed asparagus seasoned with salt, pepper and lemon juice makes an elegant and beautiful meal that’s perfect for a splurge night.
To anyone who lives a vegan lifestyle – you’re in for a treat today! I came across a recipe for a vegan bacon recipe at Veganosity, and was super excited to give it a try. The recipes uses portobello mushroom marinated in maple syrup and liquid smoke, giving it an absolutely delicious bacon-y flavor, sans the meat. As soon as I picked up some portobellos, I got to work putting this recipe to task. A few tweaks, and it was surprisingly easy to do, with an end result that was ridiculously delicious. The “bacon” was definitely a bit softer than regular bacon and it doesn’t have that crunch. But the flavor was fantastic. Put that together with the traditional BLT sandwich ingredients, and you’ve got a BLT that is not only tasty and vegan, but also very Weight Watchers friendly at just 5 Points + per sandwich.
Mushrooms in wine sauce are a fabulous way to really spruce up your meat. It makes it look like you put a lot of time and effort into making a really fancy dish, when in reality, you just spent five minutes tossing it all in a pan. I love recipes like that. They are perfect for dinner parties, date nights, or just adding a little bit of class to dinner. This mushroom in wine sauce recipe uses white wine, but if you’re nonalcoholic, you can use chicken broth or vegetable broth just as easily. The sage and taragon add a wonderful woodsy flavor to the sauce. It’s perfect on chicken breast or pork chops, or you can easy put it over steamed rice. It uses dried herbs, but I added a 1/2 tsp of chopped parsley when I garnished mine – just to make it look pretty.
Another super easy recipe I want to share today that not only tastes incredible, but requires such little effort. This Spanish Chicken and Potato Roast Recipe is all done in one pot (yay for easy clean-up!). The ingredients are combined in a large baking dish, and then slow roasted in the oven, delivering one heck of a tasty dinner. The potatoes soak up the juices released by the chicken which makes them heavenly moist and tender. And the simple seasonings are all it takes for a fantastic flavor. This hearty, satisfying Spanish Chicken and Potato Roast Recipe will definitely leave you feeling satisfied! Serve with a light salad or steamed veggies for a complete meal.