2/16/12 – Paleo ‘Lasagna’

Adapted from:  Everyday Paleo

  • 2 lbs grass fed ground beef
  • 1lb mild Italian sausage (I used Sicilian chicken sausage from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 red onion diced
  • 4 cloves crushed garlic
  • 2 tbsp dried oregano
  • 2 tbsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 28 ounce can of diced tomatoes drained
  • 1 small can of tomato paste
  • 1cup organic black olives sliced
  • 6 zucchinis thinly sliced(I used my slicer blade in the food processor for thin, even zucchini rounds – for more “lasagna” like noodles slice lengthwise with a mandolin slicer).

In a large soup pot saute onions and garlic in the olive oil for about 3 minutes.  Add ground beef and sausage and brown.  Season meat mixture with all dry ingredients and add drained diced tomatoes and tomato paste and mix well.  In a big lasagna baking dish place a layer of sliced zucchini and then ladle on a thick layer of the meat mixture and top with the sliced black olives.  Top meat and olive layer with another layer of sliced zucchini and top with a final layer of the remaining meat mixture.  Cover tightly with aluminum foil and back at 350 for 30 min.  Let sit for 10 min before serving.


2/8/12 – Heart Healthy Salmon Dinner

Number of Servings: 4

Reprinted from: www.sparkrecipes.com/Chef-Meg



450 degrees seems so hot! That’s the way the salmon and asparagus like it. Preheating the baking sheet cooks up the salmon and asparagus in half the time with an added bonus of no charring.


Parsley Mint Sauce

  • 1 shallot, quartered
  • 1 bunch cilantro, leaves only
  • 2 tablespoons mint leaves
  • 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced

Roasted Salmon

  • 1 12-ounce salmon fillet
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • Lemon couscous
  • 1 cup whole wheat Israeli couscous
  • 1 shallot, chopped

Roasted asparagus

  • 1 bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

NOTE: When asparagus is not in season, choose green beans.




Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Place a cast iron skillet and a metal sheet pan in the oven to preheat.Prepare the sauce, using a small food processor. Pulse the shallot a few times, then add the herbs and lemon juice. (The zest will be used in the couscous.) Pulse three times, then add the oil and 1-2 tablespoons of water if needed. Puree until smooth.Bring 1 1/2 cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Add the shallot, couscous and lemon zest. Cover and reduce heat to low, and let simmer for 8-10 minutes.Spray the flesh side of salmon with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully remove the cast iron skillet from the oven. Immediately place the salmon into the skillet, skin side down. Do not move the salmon. Sprinkle the salmon with cracked pepper and place in the oven for 10 minutes. As soon as the salmon is in the oven, remove the sheet pan, place the asparagus on the hot pan. Roast the asparagus for 6-7 minutes, until just tender.Serving Size: makes 4 servings, 2 tablespoons sauce, 3 ounces salmon, 1/4 cup couscous, and 6 stalks asparagus per serving


1/31/12 – Grilled Garlic Citrus Flank Steak

Sunny, 60+ degree days in January are rare!  Take advantage of the warm weather and fire up the grill!  Remember, there is room for red meat in a healthy lifestyle. The key is choosing lean cuts and healthful cooking methods.

Number of Servings: 6



  • 10 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 t salt
  • 1/2 t black pepper, cracked
  • 1 t oregano
  • 1 c orange juice
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs (24 oz) flank steak, trimmed of visible fat



Combine all marinade ingredients in a bowl. Place steak in a plastic bag or glass dish and pour in marinade to cover. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours.Preheat grill to moderate heat. Remove steak from marinade; discard any leftovers. Grill, turning once until desired temperature is reached. For this large cut of meat, I recommend cooking to medium rare (135 degrees) and allowing the meat to rest for 5 minutes once taken off the grill to allow juices to redistribute. Once removed from the grill, the meat will continue to cookslightly, raising the temperature to medium (140 degrees).Serving size is three ounces of beef; makes six servings.
Nutritional Info
  • Servings Per Recipe: 6
  • Amount Per Serving
  • Calories: 233.1
  • Total Fat: 13.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 57.3 mg
  • Sodium: 280.2 mg
  • Total Carbs: 4.2 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 0.4 g
  • Protein: 23.7 g

NOTE: The nutrition info is calculated for half the marinade as the other half is discarded.

1/30/12 – Grilled Prawns with Avocado Mango Salsa

  • 4 large prawns with shells
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 mango
  • 1/2 medium red onion
  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 1 lime
  • 1/2 jalapeno (optional)
  • salt and pepper to taste
Servings- 2
Preparation Time- 10 minutes
Cooking Time- 2-3 minutes per side or until meat turns white
Cut avocado and mango into small cubes
Finely dice onion
Chop 1 tablespoon fresh cilantro
Combine ingredients in mixing bowl
Squeeze 1/2 lime into salsa
Add salt and pepper to taste
Lightly toss, cover and refrigerate while cooking shrimpShrimp:
Devein shrimp but leave shell on
Preheat grill (or grill pan) on medium
Add shrimp (and salt and pepper to taste)
Cook for approximately 2-3 minutes and then flip
Cook opposite site 2-3 minutes or until flesh is white all the way through.  Do not overcook.To Serve:
With a ring mold (or cut the top off a plastic cup) spoon salsa mixture onto plate
Remove sheels from shrimp but leave tails on
Place shrimp on top of salsa
Garnish with lime wedge and springs of cilantro

1/20/12 – Caribbean Chicken

Yield:  4 servings

  • 1 pound skinned and boned chicken breasts, cut into bite size pieces
  •  2cups pineapple tidbits, drained, reserve ¼ cup pineapple juice
  • 1 cup chopped green pepper
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon dried ginger
  • 1 medium diced banana
  • 1/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice


1. In a large sauce pan cook rice according to package directions.2. In a large skillet sprayed with vegetable cooking spray, sauté chicken for 5 minutes until tender. Stir in pineapple and green pepper.3. In a small bowl combine the 1/4 cup reserved pineapple juice, water, cornstarch, vinegar, brown sugar, garlic, and ginger. Stir well.4. Pour mixture into chicken mixture. Mix well to combine. Continue cooking for 5 minutes or until mixture thickens, stirring often.5. Fold in banana and almonds. Heat through.6. Prepare brown rice according to package directions.7. Serve over cooked brown rice.1/13/12 – Cod with Spicy Orange & Black Cherry Sauce & Couscous


  • 10 oz couscous
  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely minced, divided
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and diced
  • 4 green onions, diced, divided
  • 1 tsp dried cilantro
  • Sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
  • 2 large navel oranges
  • 4 tbsp no-sugar-added all-fruit black cherry jam
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 4 4-oz cod fillets or other whitefish of your choice (1 lb)
  • 1/2 tsp Spanish paprika


  1. Bring 2 cups water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in couscous, cover and remove from heat. Let sit for 5 minutes, then fluff with a fork and set aside.
  2. Heat a large nonstick or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Mist with cooking spray, add half of yellow onion and 2 cloves garlic and sauté for 2 minutes. Add carrots and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add all but 2 tbsp green onions and sauté for another minute. Add couscous, sauté for 1 minute more, then remove from heat. Season with cilantro, salt and black pepper.
  3. In a small bowl, zest 1 orange, then squeeze juice from orange over zest. Slice remaining orange in half, then cut orange slices in half, leaving the peel intact. Set orange slices aside.
  4. Heat a medium-sized saucepan over medium-high heat for 1 minute. Mist with cooking spray, add remaining onion and remaining 2 cloves garlic, and sauté for 2 minutes. Add juice-zest mixture and jam, bring to a simmer, then reduce heat to medium-low. Stir in cinnamon and cayenne. Cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes or until sauce is thickened just enough so it will coat the back of a spoon.
  5. Preheat broiler on high. Line a cookie sheet or shallow baking pan with aluminum foil and arrange fillets on top of foil. Sprinkle paprika over fillets, then top each with 1 orange piece. Broil for 8 to 10 minutes or until fillets are cooked through and flaky.
  6. To serve, place 1 cup couscous-veggie mixture on a plate with 1 fillet, still topped with orange piece. Pour 2 tbsp sauce overtop of each fillet, followed by 2 tsp green onions and 2 to 3 additional orange pieces. (You will have 1 cup couscous and about 1/4 to 1/3 cup sauce left over.)
Nutrients per serving (1 cup couscous-veggie mixture, 4 oz fillet, 2 tbsp sauce): Calories: 440, Total Fat: 2.5 g, Sat. Fat: 0 g, Carbs: 76 g, Fiber: 13 g, Sugars: 9 g, Protein: 33 g, Sodium: 150 mg, Cholesterol: 50 mg
Courtesy of:  cleaneatingmag.com

1/9/12 – Thyme, Pork Chop & Pineapple Skillet Supper

Courtesy of:  Eating Well July/August 2011

4 servings; Total Time:



  • 3 tablespoons pineapple or apricot preserves or jam or orange marmalade
  • 3 tablespoons orange juice, plus more if needed
  • 2 teaspoons stone-ground or Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • 4 fresh or canned pineapple rings (1/2 inch thick), cut in half, any juice reserved
  • 2 teaspoons butter
  • 4 4- to 5-ounce boneless pork loin chops (1/2 inch thick), trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme (see Tip), divided
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided



  1. If the preserves are chunky, chop any large pieces. Combine preserves (or jam or marmalade), 3 tablespoons orange juice, mustard, ginger and curry powder in a small bowl; set aside. Pour pineapple juice into a measuring cup; if necessary, add enough orange juice to equal 1/3 cup total. Set aside.
  2. Heat butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork chops, sprinkle with 1/2 tablespoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Immediately turn them over and sprinkle with another 1/2 tablespoon thyme and the remaining salt and pepper. Cook the chops, turning occasionally and adjusting the heat as necessary, until browned, 3 to 4 minutes.
  3. Add the reserved juice to the pan. Reduce heat to medium and continue cooking until the chops are cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes more. Transfer to a platter and keep warm.
  4. Add pineapple, the reserved sauce and the remaining 1 tablespoon thyme to the pan. Cook, stirring, until hot and bubbling, 1 to 2 minutes. To serve, spoon the sauce onto the chops and pineapple.

Tips & Notes

  • Tip: To remove thyme leaves from the sprig, hold each sprig at the top with one hand, then run the thumb and finger of the other hand down the stem to strip off the leaves.


Per serving: 257 calories; 8 g fat ( 3 g sat , 3 g mono ); 72 mg cholesterol; 25 g carbohydrates; 8 g added sugars; 22 g protein; 2 g fiber; 388 mg sodium; 434 mg potassium.


1/7/12 – Marinated Salmon with Mango-Kiwi Relish

Courtesy of:  Cooking Light

Serve over mixed greens, steamed couscous, or on toasted sourdough bread for a fish sandwich.

Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 salmon fillet and 1/4 cup relish)



  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
  • Cooking spray


  • 1/2 cup diced peeled mango
  • 1/2 cup cubed peeled kiwifruit
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice


  1. To prepare salmon, combine first 4 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add fish to bag; seal. Marinate 10 minutes, turning occasionally.
  2. While fish marinates, heat grill pan or large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Remove fish from bag, discarding marinade. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add fish, and cook 5 minutes on each side or until the fish flakes easily when tested with a fork.
  3. While fish cooks, prepare the relish. Combine mango and the remaining ingredients. Serve over fish.

12/30/11 – New Year’s Tradition – Healthy Hoppin’ John

For many, January 1st offers an opportunity to forget the past and make a clean start. But instead of leaving everything up to fate, why not enjoy a meal to increase your good fortune? There are a variety of foods that are believed to be lucky and to improve the odds that next year will be a great one.  Black-eyed peas, for instance, is one food considered to be lucky when eaten throughout New Years’.

Black-Eyed Peas

In the Southern United States, it’s traditional to eat black-eyed peas in a dish called Hoppin’ John. Throughout the coastal South, eating Hoppin’ John on New Year’s Day is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck.  There are even those who believe in eating one pea for every day in the new year. This all traces back to the legend that during the Civil War, the town of Vicksburg, Mississippi ran out of food while under attack. The residents fortunately discovered black-eyed peas and the legume was thereafter considered lucky.

Although I can’t guarantee that eating black-eyed peas will bring you financial prosperity in the New Year, I do believe this recipe will be a good start to healthy eating in 2012. Cheers and wishing you all a year of healthy living and looking forward to sharing more healthy recipes with you in 2012!



Yield: 6 Servings

  • 2 cups cooked brown rice
  • 1 lb cooked turkey sausage
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black eyed peas, drained
  • 1/2 cup diced onion, sauteed
  • 1/4 cup diced celery, sauteed
  • 1 1/2 cups organic chunky salsa
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper(optional) or 1 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)


  1. Cook Turkey sausage and make sure its crumbly. Drain off any excess liquid.
  2. Mix all ingredients, including the turkey, in a pot and bring to a simmer on low to medium heat for 15-20 minutes.

Nutritional Information:  (Per Serving):  Calories – 300; Fat – 9g; Carbs – 31g; Fiber – 5g; Sugar – 3g;  Protein – 24g


3/6/12 – Skinny Hot Brown


1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
8 ounces nonfat milk
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
pinch white pepper
2 tablespoons reduced-fat Swiss cheese
2 slices whole wheat bread, toasted and cut into fourths
3 slices turkey bacon
2 Roma tomatoes, de-seeded and chopped
4 ounces (about 5 cups) baby spinach
4 ounces (about 1 cup) mushrooms
4 ounces turkey breast, sliced
6 slices reduced-sodium deli ham


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Melt the butter in a medium sauce pan, then add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for one minute. Slowly whisk in the milk, and turn the heat to medium-high. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for five minutes, until thickened. Add mustard, pepper and cheese.

Cook bacon in a large saute pan, then remove from pan, chop, and set aside. Cook mushrooms in the same pan for two minutes, then add the spinach and cook another two minutes.
Spray an 8 X 10 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Place the toast in the dish in a single layer, then layer on the meats and spinach and mushroom mixture. Pour on the cheese sauce, then sprinkle on the tomatoes and bacon. Bake for 15 minutes or until the sauce starts to bubble.

Number of Servings: 4

Nutrition Info
  • Calories: 304.9
  • Fat: 10.3g
  • Carbohydrates: 24.9g
  • Protein: 29.0g

Recipe courtesy of:  http://recipes.sparkpeople.com/recipe-detail.asp?recipe=146

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