Thursday, February 18, 2010

Chinese Cabbage Salad

2 chicken breasts
1 (3 ounce) package ramen noodles, crushed
10 ounces cashew pieces (I usually use only about 1/2 this)
1 (16 ounce) package shredded coleslaw mix (or use 1/2 head fresh cabbage, shredded with about 1 medium carrot, grated)
1 bunch green onions, chopped (optional)
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup cider vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
1 tablespoon soy sauce

1.  Cook chicken, flavoring with part of ramen noodles seasoning packet.  Cut into bit size cubes.

2.  In a preheated 350 degree F oven (175 degree C), toast the crushed noodles and nuts until golden brown (use a little spray on both the cookie sheet and noodles, then sprinkle with remaining part of seasoning packet from ramen noodles).  This takes about 4-5 minutes, watch as they can burn.

3.  To prepare the dressing, shake in bottle the sugar, oil, vinegar and soy sauce (may add 1T peanut butter is you like).

4.  Up to this point, all direction can be done ahead of time.  When ready to serve:  In a large bowl, combine the coleslaw, green onions, chicken, toasted ramen noodles and cashews.  Pour the dressing over the salad and toss.

For a main dish, I make this with the chicken as stated. For a side, you can leave the chicken out.

Adapted from allrecipes

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Southwest Chicken Soup

Pictured healthy (if only the sour cream was really yogurt).

Prep 10 min, cook 25 min
½ lb boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into ½ inch cubes
¼ c finely chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 T olive oil
1 can (15 ¼ oz) whole kernel corn, drained (frozen works too)
1 can (15 oz) black bens, rinsed and drained
1 can (14 ½ oz) chicken broth (or 2 cups water plus 2 chicken bullion cubes)
1 can (10 oz) diced tomatoes and green chilies, undrained
1 t ground cumin
½ t salt
½ t chili powder
1/8 t cayenne pepper
Plain yogurt and minced fresh cilantro (or sour cream)

In a large skillet over medium heat, cook the chicken, onion and garlic in oil until chicken is lightly browned and onion is tender. Stir in the corn, beans, broth, tomatoes, cumin, salt, chili powder, and cayenne. Bring to boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer 10-15 min. Garnish with yogurt and cilantro.

Yield: 4 servings (I would say 6-8).

*This is a tried and true recipe for our house, but I made this tonight in an effort to please the calorie counter.  Instead of frying the chicken, onion, and garlic in oil, I cooked the chicken in the crock pot (then removed the fat) and sauteed the onion and then garlic in chicken broth.  I then put all the ingredients back into the crock pot and let it heat through (I haven't ever tried it with the cayenne pepper).  This reminds me of Taco Soup, only with chicken--even better!
Pictured dressed up, in case someone needs encouragement--not as healthy, but tasty!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Chocolate Applesauce Cake

½ cup shortening
1 ½ cup sugar
2 eggs
2 cup flour
1 tsp salt
3 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp soda
2 cups applesauce
½ tsp. cinnamon
6 oz chocolate chips

Cream sugar, shortening, and eggs. Sift flour, salt, baking soda, cocoa and cinnamon. Add applesauce and stir. Pour into a 9x13 pan. Sprinkle 2 Tbsp sugar and chocolate chips. Bake@ 350* for 40 minutes.

*There is a new frame of mind at my house--not something that comes easy for me, in fact, I've been resisting the change--but nonetheless, my chief consumer has decided to get into shape.  That means less cooking and more exercise at our house.  However, yesterday I took it a little too far when there wasn't a treat for Family Home Evening.  To make up for my folly, I promised chocolate cake for dessert tonight, but to please the calorie counter, I opted to try this lower fat recipe.  It was pretty good for only 1/2 c of shortening!  I liked what the sugar and chocolate chips did to the tope of the cake.  It turned out very moist.  Now I just need a family to help eat the leftovers!