Saturday, February 11, 2012

Orange Asparagus

We got some fresh asparagus in our produce box this past week. I have never cooked fresh asparagus so started searching for recipes. I found this one in a Weight Watchers cookbook that I got for Christmas.

Orange Asparagus - 4 servings
1 pound fresh asparagus, cleaned well and cut or broken into 1 1/2 inch pieces
2 tsp orange zest
1/4 cup fresh orange juice (this was the juice of one orange)
salt and pepper to taste

Bring about 2 quarts of water to a boil. Place asparagus in the boiling water and cook for 4 minutes.
Drain. Return to pan and stir in the orange zest, juice, salt and pepper.
Serve immediately.

Italian Zucchini Pie

This is another recipe I have had from many years ago. DH is not a fan of zucchini so I never make it but had to try it today. (I had two servings for lunch) I think if he just tries it, he will like it.

Italian Zucchini Pie 6 servings
(if you are using an 8 inch pie crust/pan, cut the recipe in half)
4 c thinly sliced zucchini (no need to peel it)
1 c chopped onion
1/4 c margarine (I had some butter so used that - I'm sure that made it taste better)
2 Tbsp dried parsley or 1/2 c chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp basil
1/4 tsp oregano (I used a little more as I really like oregano)
2 eggs
8 oz mozzarella, shredded
10 inch pie crust
2 tsp prepared mustard (I used dijon)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Cook and stir zucchini and onion in margarine about 4 minutes. Stir in salt, pepper, garlic powder, basil and oregano and cook 1-2 minutes longer. It will be a litle watery.

Using a slotted spoon, remove zucchini from pan and place in a large mixing bowl. Discard liquid.
(I could have eaten the zucchini just like this as a side dish. Will have to remember that for another meal.)

Slightly beat the eggs and add to the zucchini. Add the 2 cups cheese. Stir to mix well.

Spread mustard in bottom of prepared pie crust. I did not measure - just squirted some in the pie crust and spread with the back of a spoon.

Pour in zucchini mixture and spread evenly.

Bake 20 - 25 minutes until center is set. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Cucumber/Zucchini Salad

This salad can be made with cucumbers, zucchini or a combination of both. I think it would also be good with some sliced onion added. I have this recipe from many years ago when olive oil and red wine vinegar were not commonly used (at least not in small town Midwest USA).
The original called for 2 Tbsp oil, that probably would have been Mazola corn oil or Wesson oil. Seems like that is all we had then. Two TBSP seemed like a lot so I cut it in half and used olive oil. I love red wine vinegar so chose that instead of plain old white distilled or cider vinegar.

Cuke/Zuke Salad 4 servings

1 large cucumber or zucchini, sliced (about 4 cups)
1-2 Tbsp finely cut fresh dill (I did not have fresh so used about 1/2 tsp dried. You can adjust for your own taste.)
2 Tbsp low fat or fat free sour cream
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
dash pepper

Slice cuke/zuke and place in large bowl. Sprinkle with dill.

Whisk together remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables.

Chill at least an hour or two.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Baked Eggplant Parmigiana

I got this recipe from Weight Watchers online. I believe it was a community recipe. I may have changed it just a little - my version is 7 PointsPlus.

Baked Eggplant Parmigiana - 6 serving - 7 PointsPlus each
5 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 1/4 cup dried plain bread crumbs
4 egg whites
1 medium eggplant ( approx 1 lb after trimming, 1/4 inch slices)
14 oz tomato sauce
garlic powder
Italian seasoning
2 cups mozzarella part skim, shredded
3 Tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat over to 425 degrees. Spray two baking sheets with nonstick spray (I put aluminum foil on my baking sheets and sprayed the foil)

Combine the flour, oregano and black pepper in a shallow bowl. Beat the egg whites in a second shallow bowl. Put the bread crumbs in a third shallow bowl.

Working with one slice of eggplant at a time, place in the flour turning once so both sides are lightly coated.

Dip the floured slice into the beaten egg whites. Lastly, dredge the slice with bread crumbs to coat both sides.

Place in single layer on the baking sheets. Spray tops of all the slices with cooking spray.
Bake in oven for 10 minutes - turn and bake another 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Meanwhile mix tomato sauce, garlic powder and Italian seasoning in a bowl. Spray bottom of 9 x 13 casserole dish. Spoon 1-2 Tbsp of tomato sauce in dish and spread to lightly coat the bottom.
Layer half the eggplant on top of the sauce in the dish. Spoon half of the remaining tomato sauce over the layer of eggplant. Sprinkle with 1 cup mozzarella.
Place rest of eggplant slices on the cheese - cover with remaining tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese and the Parmesan cheese.

Bake 12 -14 minutes (I was baking dinner rolls so the oven was set at 350 degrees so I baked about 15 minutes. Since the eggplant is already cooked you just need to heat it through and melt the cheeses).

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Orange Chicken and Broccoli

Orange Chicken with Broccoli (4 servings - 5 Points Plus each)
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
2 1/2 Tbsp all purpose flour (divided)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 tsp olive oil
1 1/2 cup fat free chicken broth
1 tsp minced garlic
2 1/2 cup uncooked broccoli, small florets and cut up stems
2 tsp orange zest
Juice of one orange

Cut chicken into thin slices or bite size pieces. Place in a large bowl and toss with the flour, sale and pepper.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet until water sizzles. Place chicken in skillet in a single layer and cook until lightly browned - about 5 minutes - turning as needed. Remove to a plate.
Put 1 cup of the broth and the garlic in the skillet and bring to a boil, scraping the browned chicken pieces from the skillet. Add broccoli, cover and cook 1 minute.

In a small cup, stir together remaining 1/2 cup of broth, 1/2 tablespoon flour and 1/4 teaspoon salt, add to skillet and bring to a simmer over low heat.

Cover and cook until broccoli is crisp tender and the sauce is slightly thickened, about 1 1/2 minutes. Stir in chicken and orange zest; heat through.

Remove skillet from heat and stir in orange juice.

Serve over rice.