Healthy Recipes to Keep You Fit and Fabulous

Archive for the ‘Mom’s Home Cooking’ Category

Happy Easter! Recipe: Baked Mini Ham Sammies

HAPPY EASTER!

I hope everyone has been enjoying a beautiful day filled with family, food and fun- and, most importantly, remembering that this is a day of celebration of our Lord and Savior- He is Risen!

Let’s cover yesterday before I recap my lovely Easter Sunday.

Breakfast

Yesterday was Saturday, which means only one thing- pancakes!  I decided to switch it up and make “egg in the middle” pancakes.

I started by cooking two large pancakes:

I fried two eggs, sunny side up:

I used a knife to cut a hole out of the middle of the pancakes:

I placed the fried egg in the middle, and enjoyed my egg-in-the-middle pancake with a huge cup of coffee:

I topped mine with sugar-free syrup and ketchup, which, surprisingly, wasn’t weird.

After digesting for a little while, we headed to the gym for our Saturday-afternoon BodyPump class.  I may be addicted to the ‘Pump.

Lunch

We decided to skip cardio because we had some errands to run before my parents arrived from Ft. Lauderdale.  We did some grocery shopping, and then stopped at Subway for lunch.

I had a 6-inch turkey on whole wheat, toasted with provolone cheese, honey mustard, spinach, tomato, green pepper, banana peppers and pickles!

I sipped on a Vidration water in Lemon-Lime flavor:

Although it has 0 calories, after skimming through the ingredients list, I don’t think I’ll be buying this again- far too many mystery ingredients!

When we got home, I got to work on the food I was planning to bring to Corey’s parents’ house for Easter brunch.  I decided to go with one of my mom’s recipes that is my absolute favorite “holiday” breakfast- baked mini ham sandwiches!

Baked Mini Ham Sammies

Servings: makes 24 (I suggest 2 per person)

Ingredients:

24 mini potato rolls (I used Martin’s brand)

1/2 cup of Smart Balance spread or butter

4 tablespoons minced onions

2 tablespoons poppy seeds

12 oz. thinly sliced deli ham

9 slices swiss cheese, cut into 24 small slices

4 tablespoons Dijon mustard

*Note*: Can be made ahead and kept in the refrigerator the day before, and baked right before serving.

Directions:

Lay tinfoil across a cutting board or cookie sheet and place the rolls on top (to have a sturdy working surface).
Use a knife to slice directly through the middle of the rolls, so you end up with two halves.

Top each bottom half with 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard and spread with a knife.

Sprinkle 1 teaspoon of minced onions on each bottom half.

Top each half with a portion of ham (just use your fingers to tear it up into appropriate portion sizes)

Cut the cheese into the right size:

Top each one with a slice of cheese.

Spread the top halves with a thin pad of butter or Smart Balance Spread.

Place the top halves back onto the bottom halves, making sure they line up with each other.

Place another thin pad of butter or spread on top of each one, then sprinkle with poppy seeds.

Wrap completely with tinfoil and refrigerate.

Before Serving: Place sandwiches (still wrapped in tinfoil) in 350 degree oven for 20-30 minutes.

************************************************************************************************************

My parents arrived around 6PM, and we went straight over to Corey’s parents house for appetizers and a glass of wine.

Corey’s mom made an awesome dip with avocado, tomato, red onion and feta cheese that I loved.

She also had some Easter-themed treats!

We decided to go to Antonio’s, which is one of Corey’s parents’ favorite restaurants.  It’s a great little Italian place that is separated into a downstairs cafe and an upstairs “ristorante”- the downstairs atmosphere is more casual, while upstairs is a little more upscale.

The best part about eating downstairs is that you can browse the wine selection, pick your own bottle, and they will open it for you and let you drink it while walking around.  Corey helped pick out some good bottles for us:

What…a jokester.

Once we sat down, we munched on some delicious garlic bread.

As soon as I saw the menu, I knew exactly what I was having.  Melanzane alla Parmigiana, also known as my favorite meal- Eggplant Parmesan!

It was delicious, and I was happy to have some leftovers to take home with me!

Corey ordered the special, which was tilapia in a gorgonzola cream sauce.  I had to sneak a few bites- the sauce was to die for.

Here’s a picture of the whole gang:

It was great having both of our families together, although we missed my sister!  She couldn’t make the trip down from school because she has finals this week.

Easter Sunday

Breakfast

I woke up this morning and had a quick breakfast.  I was excited yesterday because my grocery store finally had the Lemon Chobani I have been dying to try!

I wanted to try it because, as we know, I hate fruit yogurts, so the lemon adds flavor without being in the category of the many fruit flavors I don’t like.  Yay!

I also had a Chocolate Pancake Muffin with peanut butter:

After eating, I got ready for church and my parents met us at our apartment.  My mom gave me my Easter basket, which I look forward to every year.  I expect to still be receiving one even when my own children are getting theirs.

Highlights included new make up, a chef’s basket (for easily removing pasta or vegetables from boiling water), a stack of coupons, and an electric hair remover <–Is she trying to tell me something?

We met Corey’s family at our church, which we were excited to bring them to for the first time.  We all enjoyed the service very much.  Afterwards, we headed to Corey’s parents house for an Easter brunch.

We enjoyed some appetizers, my favorite being the smoked salmon with chive cream cheese- yum!

My mom and I had a mimosa:

Corey’s mom sent us on our traditional hunt for our Easter baskets!  I always find mine before Corey, which he hates.

Highlights of Basket #2 included a Southern Living Weddings magazine, a Groupon to one of our favorite restaurants, and a mini grow-it-yourself Basil!

How cute is that?

Corey’s basket suited his interests perfectly:

Corey’s mom had a beautiful Easter table set up, overlooking the amazing view of the lake in their backyard:

After Corey’s aunt, uncle, cousin and grandmother and her husband arrived, we dug into the fabulous brunch spread!

My plate included a little of everything, of course: quiche Lorraine, ham and egg casserole, my mini ham sammies, Kielbasa (Polish sausage, a holiday staple, because Corey’s parents are Polish) and a slice of chocolate swirl cake that I was supposed to share with Corey, but accidentally demolished on my own.

Once we were sufficiently stuffed, my mom and I took over the entertainment, in true Turner form.

My mom started off by singing and playing the piano, and then I got up and sang while my mom accompanied me on the piano.  We used it as a practice session since I will be performing the song at her upcoming piano recital next month.

Afterwards, we celebrated Corey’s grandmother’s husband’s birthday!  My mom played “Happy Birthday” on the piano while he blew out the candles on a massive chocolate cake.

Bella was not happy that I forced her to wear an Easter dress:

Cruel and Unusual Puppy Punishment

Here’s me and my Dad:

Corey and I in our Easter finest:

And finally, a picture of Corey and I with our parents:

I had such a great weekend with my family, and I am so happy they were able to spend Easter with Corey and I!

Now, I’m planning to eat my body weight in Easter candy while memorizing every muscle in the human body, learning the principles of chemistry, and engraving the causes and treatment of infectious diseases into my brain.

1 week to go!

HAPPY THANKSGIVING! I’m thankful for…

FOOD!!!!

Among other things, of course.

I’m not usually one to toot my own horn, but I have to say, this Thanksgiving feast was one of the best I’ve ever had- and I happen to be the creator of my favorite parts of it!

Sistas in the Kitchen

I made two great dishes last year for my family that I found from my favorite chefs on Food Network.  I made Giada’s Baked Mashed Potatoes with Pancetta, and Emeril’s Spinach and Artichoke Stuffing.  The potatoes were a hit, so I knew I was making them again this year.  The stuffing was really good, but I made a mistake by using bread that was too fresh, which resulted in a slightly soggy texture.  My sister made sure to make me aware of it =).  I knew I was on the right track with the stuffing, so I decided to make it again, using really stale bread instead.  It was…amazing. I could eat it three times a day, every day for the rest of my life. Not kidding.  I was extra proud of myself this year, because I decided to tackle dessert- no pumpkin pie for us, it was all about Martha Stewart’s Pumpkin Bread Pudding with Dulce de Leche sauce! YUM!  You guys know I never claim to be an expert baker or dessert-maker of any kind, but somehow, this came out perfectly.  Definitely a must-try!  Also on the menu: FRIED Turkey, Peas & Onions (my sister’s must-have dish), Sweet Potato Casserole, Green Bean Casserole, Cranberry Sauce, and Homemade Gravy!

Hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving!

YUM!

The Fam (minus Dad the photographer)

The Ultimate Comfort Meal: Slow Cooker Pot Roast

Pot roast is one of those meals that almost everyone’s mom has their own recipe for.  My mom makes a delicious pot roast in the oven, with carrots, potatoes, celery and onion.  Corey’s mom’s recipe uses a special cooking method with the oven, and one ingredient is a jar of turkey gravy!  It’s just one of those meals that you have to know how to make if you’re going to be a domestic goddess.  That’s obviously everyone’s goal here, right?  Ha. Anyways, the other night, I decided that I would try to tackle the task of creating my own pot roast recipe (with some help from our favorite Publix sample lady, who inspired this idea!)  Surprisingly, it didn’t take that many ingredients for me to get a very flavorful dish, using my handy dandy slow cooker, of course.

Slow Cooker Pot Roast


Servings: 3-4

Ingredients:

1 pound chuck roast (we used less than this, and a thinner cut, but it wasn’t really enough so I recommend going for the bigger, more expensive roasts)

Our cut of meat

 

2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks

4 medium celery stalks, ends removed, the rest cut into chunks

6 medium red potatoes, washed and cut into quarters

1 Vidalia onion, cut into wedges

2 cups chicken stock

1 cup water

3 tablespoons Reduced-Sodium Soy Sauce

2 tablespoons Worcestershire

1 teaspoon salt and pepper

1 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon Montreal Steak Seasoning

1 tablespoon EVOO

*optional: I served ours over whole wheat farfalle*

Directions:

Heat a skillet with the EVOO over medium-high heat.  Season the meat with just a sprinkling of salt, pepper and garlic powder on each side.

 

 

 

 

Browned

 

 

Place the meat in the skillet and brown 1-2 minutes on both sides.  Remove from skillet and place in the slow cooker.

 

 

 

 

Chopped Veggies

 

 

 

 

 

 

Everybody in the pool!

 

Chop your vegetables and add them to the slow cooker, on top of the meat.

Pour in the chicken stock, water, soy sauce, Worcestershire, and seasonings.  Meat should be covered with liquid and vegetables should be almost covered (if not, add a little more water).  Give it a little stir, put the lid on top, and cook on LOW for 8 hours.

 

Big Bowl of Comfort Food!

Serve over whole wheat egg noodles, whole wheat farfalle (like I did) or brown rice.

 

Date Night Dinner: Beef Bourguignon

Ok, so I know the name of this dish is enough to send any first-time cook running in the other direction, but don’t worry- the name is just a cover-up for how simple this dish is! This is actually my mom’s recipe. She made it for my dad first, then she made it for my uncle when they were staying up in the mountains at our house in Boone, NC.  It was quite a hit. She convinced me to give it a try, and now it is one of our favorites!  Just follow each step to a T, and you’ll be amazed at how good it turns out! The most fun part about making this was watching my fiance drink glass after glass of the burgundy…lol. He said it felt sophisticated because it “comes in a jug”.  I have to warn you, this doesn’t fall under the category of “healthy”…but it’s so worth the splurge!

Mom’s Beef Bourguignon


Servings: 8

Ingredients:

4 tablespoons butter

8 oz. mushrooms, sliced

3 slices bacon, diced

2 lbs. boneless beef stew meat, cubed

2 tablespoons all purpose flour

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 1/4 cup burgundy, plus more as needed

1/2 cup water, plus more as needed

2 beef boullion cubes

2 tablespoons sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1 small bay leaf

1 cup frozen pearl onions

1 package whole wheat egg noodles

Directions:

Melt butter over medium high heat in large saucepan with lid.

Saute mushrooms 3 minutes. Remove mushrooms; set aside.

Add bacon to pan, cook, stirring for 3 minutes, until crisp.  Remove to paper towels; set aside.

Add meat to drippings in pan, brown well.

Stir in flour, garlic, tomato paste, wine, water, bouillon cubes, sugar, salt, thyme, bay leaf and pepper.  Cover and simmer, stirring occassionally 2 hours (if liquid evaporates too much add more water or wine).

Add onions, reserved mushrooms and bacon.  Simmer 1 hour longer.

Cook egg noodles according to package directions.  Serve over the cooked noodles.

Tag Cloud