Have you made Roasted Asparagus? Too easy and way too good to be a veggie!

RoastedAsparagus MyRecipes

Roasted Asparagus – Image: MyRecipes.com

Photo: Leigh Beisch; Styling: Merilee Bordin

I like asparagus. Actually I LOVE asparagus. Of all cooking methods, roasting is hands down the most flavorful cooking method. The taste is out of this world and it is so easy you won’t believe it!

Sometimes I sprinkle a little parmesan, sometimes I don’t. Same with the lemon. It works either way. It doesn’t need it, but it’s a nice twist.  You can also just use however much asparagus you like (if you don’t need six servings), toss in olive oil, sprinkle with a little salt and pop in the oven!

Yield: Makes 6 servings

Roasted Asparagus

  • 2 bunches asparagus (about 2 lbs.)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup packed freshly shredded parmesan cheese
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 475°. Hold the end of an asparagus stalk and bend until it snaps off. Repeat with remaining stalks and discard woody ends.

2. Toss asparagus with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and toss well. Arrange asparagus in an even layer in a shallow baking dish. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and bake until asparagus is crisp-tender and cheese is browned, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with lemon juice. Serve hot or warm.

Note: Nutritional analysis is per serving.

Nutritional Information/per serving

  • Calories: 84
  • Calories from fat: 49%
  • Protein: 7.6g
  • Fat: 4.6g
  • Saturated fat: 2.1g
  • Carbohydrate: 5g
  • Fiber: 1.2g
  • Sodium: 274mg
  • Cholesterol: 7.5mg

Catch you back here tomorrow!

Baked Potato Soup with all the trimmings!

Image: http://www.MyRecipes.com

Sometimes when you’re chilly there is nothing like a nice hot bowl of soup to get your innards warmed up. Other than vacuuming, there really isn’t anything that is going to warm you up from the inside out!

This tasty soup is from Cooking Light, and although it uses lower fat ingredients, if no one told you there were lower fat ingredients, I promise you, you would never know. NEVER. KNOW. That’s part of what makes this such a good recipe. It’s a fairly quick soup to make after the potatoes are baked. Mmmm, this is looking too good right now!!

So, if you were sitting there thinking… Ugh, I’m in a rut and need to try something new but want it to be pretty healthy, hey, this is for you!

I use Cracker Barrel 2% Extra Sharp cheese, it’s great, and it’s my “go to” cheese for recipes. It’s in every grocery store in Charleston, but I know other areas don’t carry it (Algonac, MI, darnit!). Serving size is 1 1/2 cups and let me tell ya… you will be full! Especially after a little plop of reduced fat sour cream, some shredded 2% extra sharp cheese, some green onions and some crispy bacon… oh la la…

 

BAKED POTATO SOUP  

 (Click on the recipe title for the link to MyRecipes.com, where all the Cooking Light recipes are as well as Southern Living, Real Simple and a host of other magazines, its easiest way to print!)

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: about 1 1/2 cups soup, 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons onions, and about 1 tablespoon bacon)

Ingredients

  • 4  baking potatoes (about 2 1/2 pounds)
  • 2/3  cup  all-purpose flour (about 3 ounces)
  • 6  cups  2% reduced-fat milk
  • 1  cup  (4 ounces) reduced-fat shredded extrasharp cheddar cheese, divided
  • 1  teaspoon  salt
  • 1/2  teaspoon  freshly ground black pepper
  • 1  cup  reduced-fat sour cream
  • 3/4  cup  chopped green onions, divided
  • 6  bacon slices, cooked and crumbled
  • Cracked black pepper (optional)

PreparationPreheat oven to 400°.

Pierce potatoes with a fork; bake at 400° for 1 hour or until tender. Cool. Peel potatoes; coarsely mash.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Place flour in a large Dutch oven; gradually add milk, stirring with a whisk until blended. Cook over medium heat until thick and bubbly (about 8 minutes). Add mashed potatoes, 3/4 cup cheese, salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper, stirring until cheese melts. Remove from heat.

Stir in sour cream and 1/2 cup onions. Cook over low heat 10 minutes or until thoroughly heated (do not boil). Ladle 1 1/2 cups soup into each of 8 bowls. Sprinkle each serving with 1 1/2 teaspoons cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons onions, and about 1 tablespoon bacon. Garnish with cracked pepper, if desired.

Nutritional Information

Calories:
329 (30% from fat)
Fat:
10.8g (sat 5.9g,mono 3.5g,poly 0.7g)
Protein:
13.6g
Carbohydrate:
44.5g
Fiber:
2.8g
Cholesterol:
38mg
Iron:
1.1mg
Sodium:
587mg
Calcium:
407mg

Black Bottom Banana Cream Pie… oh my!

This is a Cooking Light recipe, and it’s TO. DIE. FOR. I’m not kidding you! My husband says “It’s so good it’ll make your tongue beat your brains out!” or something like that. I have to admit, I haven’t heard that saying before, the images that flash before my eyes give me the willies, BUT, it’s a GOOD thing… means it’s soooo gooood!

Oh yeah, the BLACK BOTTOM BANANA CREAM PIE (click on that for direct link to My Recipes where it’s easily printed) is delish! It’s not difficult, bake a pie crust, melt some chocolate, make the banana cream custard filling, slap the sliced bananas on top of the chocolate, smear on the custard, then they top with “whipped topping” EEEEK, which just doesn’t happen to be in my vocabulary. Instead mine isn’t pretty until served, I make whipped cream or if in a time pinch use the canned REAL whipped cream, then using a microplane shred a little chocolate on top and whoooaaaa! Have you got yourself a masterpiece! But don’t take my word for it. Really. Ohhhh, please tell me I didn’t toss those overripe bananas!

Black Bottom Banana Cream Pie

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 wedge)

Ingredients:

  • (9-inch) Pastry Crust
  • 3  tablespoons  cornstarch, divided
  • 2  tablespoons  sugar
  • 2  tablespoons  unsweetened cocoa
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 1/3  cups  1% low-fat milk, divided
  • 1  ounce  semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2  cup  sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt
  • 2  large eggs
  • 1  tablespoon  stick margarine or butter
  • 2  teaspoons  vanilla extract
  • 2  ounces  block-style fat-free cream cheese, softened
  • 2  cups  sliced ripe banana (about 2 large bananas)
  • 1 1/2  cups  frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed
  • Chocolate curls (optional)

Preparation

Prepare and bake Pastry Crust in a 9-inch pie plate. Cool completely on a wire rack.

Combine 1 tablespoon cornstarch, 2 tablespoons sugar, cocoa, and dash of salt in a small, heavy saucepan; gradually add 1/3 cup milk, stirring with a whisk. Cook 2 minutes over medium-low heat. Stir in chocolate; bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Spread chocolate mixture into bottom of prepared crust.

Combine 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/4 teaspoon salt, eggs, 1 cup milk, and margarine in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly with a whisk. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, and cook 30 seconds or until thick. Remove from heat. Add vanilla. Beat cream cheese until light (about 30 seconds). Add 1/4 cup hot custard to cream cheese, and beat just until blended. Stir in remaining custard.

Arrange banana slices on top of chocolate layer; spoon custard over bananas. Press plastic wrap onto surface of custard; chill 4 hours. Remove plastic wrap. Spread whipped topping evenly over custard. Garnish with chocolate curls, if desired. Chill until ready to serve.

Nutritional Information

Calories:

315 (29% from fat)
Fat:
10.1g (sat 4.8g,mono 3.4g,poly 2.4g)
Protein:
6.9g
Carbohydrate:
49.6g
Fiber:
1.6g
Cholesterol:
58mg
Iron:
1.4mg
Sodium:
253mg
Calcium:
94mg

Greg Patent, Cooking Light, NOVEMBER 1998

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Image via www.myrecipes.com – Becky Luigart-Stayner