Thursday, December 30, 2010

New Years Hoppin' John


Hoppin' John, also known as Carolina Peas and Rice, is a dish served in southern United States. Throughout the coastal South, eating Hoppin' John on New Year's Day is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck. The peas are symbolic of pennies or coins, and a coin is sometimes added to the pot or left under the dinner bowls.

On the day after New Year's Day, leftover "Hoppin' John" is called "Skippin' Jenny" and further demonstrates one's frugality, bringing a hope for an even better chance of prosperity in the New Year. And besides all of that... it tastes pretty darn good! 


- 3 slices of bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
- 1 clove of garlic, chopped small
- 1/2 cup onion, chopped small 
- 1/2 cup celery, chopped small
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 cup brown rice (or package of Uncle Ben's brown rice)
- 2, 15 oz. cans Black Eye Peas, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup ham, diced 
- 1/2 tsp. Adobo seasoning (optional - but I recommend it) :)
- 1 1/2 tsp. fresh thyme

In a large skillet, cook bacon over medium high heat. Cook until crisp and remove to the plate. Saute' garlic, onion, and celery in the bacon grease for about 3 minutes. Add the water, chicken broth, and rice, stirring occasionally for a few minutes (until rice just starts to absorb water). Add black eye peas, ham, and Adobo seasoning. Simmer for about 5 minutes. Top with crumbled bacon pieces and fresh thyme. Enjoy, and best of luck to you in the New Year! 

"One word of encouragement can make the difference between going on or giving up." - Author Unknown

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Low-Point Stuffed Peppers


Need a dinner idea? Here's one -- read through "Points in My Life" more often. :) But until you have time to sit down with nice drink and go through this entire blog, here is a quick and easy dinner idea for you now. Enjoy!

Low-Point Stuffed Peppers


- 1 lb. ground turkey
- 1/2 cup chopped onion (or 1 tsp. onion powder)
- 1 clove garlic, chopped
- 1/4 tsp. chili powder, optional
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1 can condensed tomato soup
- 1 cup fat-free mozzarella shredded cheese
- 4 medium peppers (red, yellow, orange, and/or green)
- 1/2 zucchini, chopped or 1 cup chopped broccoli (optional)

Cook ground turkey, onion, and garlic in skillet until meat is browned. Drain grease. Add seasonings and tomato soup and simmer on low for 3 minutes. Add cheese and veggies (if desired), stirring occasionally until cheese is melted. Cut off tops of peppers and scoop out the insides with a spoon. Cook peppers in boiling water for 3 to 5 minutes (or until barely tender but not mushy.) Scoop ground turkey mixture into peppers and serve. (Sprinkle a little cheese on top if desired.) If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

Total servings = 4
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 5.5

Note:  Enjoy my low-point veggie salad as a side item.

"What you be tomorrow, depends on the choices you make today." 
- Anonymous

Monday, December 27, 2010

Low-Point Macaroons

Coconut lovers can stop searching the internet for a wonderful coconut cookie recipe, because you just found it! :) These terrific coconut macaroons have a great taste and with just a touch of chocolate, there's extra goodness in every bite!

Low-Point Macaroons
- 3 large egg whites
- 2/3 cups Splenda granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups packaged shredded coconut, sweetened or unsweetened
- 5 pieces of mini Sugar-Free Hershey Chocolate bars, chopped (they come in 3 oz. little bags)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a large cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a large bowl, whisk egg whites and sugar (or place in mixer and mix on medium speed for a few minutes). Add vanilla and coconut. Stir to combine. Scoop up a heaping tablespoon of batter and form into a little ball or pile into your hands. Place the ball or little pile of coconut mixture on cookie sheet. Bake until the tops start turning light tan (about 15 minutes). Remove cookies to cooling rack for about 30 minutes. Melt chocolate in a double boiler (or in the microwave) and place a little bit in the center of each cookie. Freeze until chocolate sets, about 20 or 30 minutes. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total Servings = 12
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 3.5
Note: These cookies were a made a little larger than the recipe called. If you made them a little smaller and made 18 total, the total points per serving would be 2.3.

"The best place to serve is where God has placed you." - Author Unknown

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Low-Point Crab-Stuffed Pea Pod Appetizer

You may not have time to prepare this wonderful appetizer recipe for Christmas, but let's not forget about New Year's Eve! :)  Ring in the new year with this fantastic crab-stuffed pea pod appetizer.

Low-Point Crab Stuffed Pea Pod Appetizer
- 1/2 pound (8 ounces) snow pea pods, tips removed
- 1/2 cup fat free sour cream
- 1, 8 oz. package imitation crabmeat, finely chopped
- 1, 3 oz. package fat free cream cheese
- 1 Tbs horseradish 
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
Cut seam on side of pea pod forming pocket.
Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Spoon or pipe crab mixture into each pod. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Serving size = 1 pea pod
Points per serving = .4

"A good example is someone who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way." - Author Unknown

Low-Point Lemon Cookies

All cookies don't have to be overly sweet to be wonderful. These satisfying lemon cookies are made with Bisquick. They have a great lemony "cake" flavor and are a wonderful treat with your morning, noon, or evening coffee. :)

Low-Point Lemon Cookies
- 1 cup Heart Smart Bisquick baking mix
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2, 1 oz. boxes of sugar free, fat free instant pudding (any flavor)
- 2 Tbs milk
- Powdered sugar, sifted on top after baking (optional)
Mix well and form into little balls. Place on ungreased cookie sheet and flatten with a fork. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 1/2 to 9 minutes. Sift powdered sugar on top after baking for a little added sweetness. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings = 21 
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 1.3
*Tip: I made this recipe again using Chocolate Sugar Free Fat Free Instant Pudding but I added 1/2 cup Splenda granulated sugar. If you'd like a sweeter option, just add Splenda. (For those who prefer to use regular table sugar vs. Splenda, using 1/2 cup regular sugar, each enjoyable cookie would be 1.7 pts. instead of 1.3.)

"There is no limit to what can be accomplished if it doesn't matter who gets the credit." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Low-Point Garbanzo or Chick Pea Salad

During this time of year, a lot of people prefer to save their "points" or higher-calorie foods for divine holiday desserts. If you're one of these people, make sure your low-calorie lunch or supper is healthy! This very healthy low-point Garbanzo salad has a delicious flavor and light enough to fill up on so you won't go overboard this season on the sweets.

Low-Point Garbanzo or Chick Pea Salad
- 1, 15 oz. can Garbanzo beans, drained
- 1/2 to 1 cucumber, chopped (or 2 stalks celery, chopped) or both :)
- 18 grape or cherry tomatoes (halved)
- 1/2 red onion, chopped fine (or a little bit of onion powder)
- 24 small, pitted, black olives, drained and chopped
- 2 oz. crumbled fat free Feta cheese
- 1 Tbs lemon juice (optional)
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- seasonings to taste (I used pepper and Goya Adobo All Purpose Seasoning)
Mix all ingredients and serve! How easy is that? :) If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings = 4 (1 cup) servings
Serving size = 1 cup
Points per serving = 3.6 (for 1 cup), 1.8 (for 1/2 cup)
*Tip: You can make this salad 3 pts. for 1 cup by using 12 black olives (chopped) instead of 24 and also by leaving out the 2 oz. of Feta cheese and just adding 1 Tbs of it to your portion after you put it on your plate.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Low-Point (Diabetic) Chocolate Chip Cookies

A few people have asked if I have any cookie recipes for diabetics. That, I do! :) I have made these chocolate chip cookies for several of my friends who are diabetic and they enjoy them very much. The only problem is, so do we! Therefore, after I bake them I have to quickly move them to a tray and mark them as "cookies to be given away." If you know of anyone you would like to share this recipe with or bake these cookies for, they're incredibly easy to make and very delicious to eat.

Diabetic Chocolate Chip Cookies
- 1/2 cup Land O Lakes Light butter
- 1/3 cup Splenda Granulated Sugar Substitute
- 1/4 cup Splenda Brown Sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 cup and 2 Tbs flour
- 1/2 tsp. baking soda
- 2 Tbs milk
- 3/4 cup Hershey's Sugar Free Chocolates (chopped)
Combine butter, sugars, egg, and vanilla. Add flour, baking soda, and milk. Mix well. Blend in the chopped chocolates. Drop by spoonfuls on cookie sheet and bake at 375 for 8 or 9 minutes. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings = 12
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 2.6

Friday, December 17, 2010

Low-Point Kolocky (or Thumbprint) Cookies

If you're Polish, you're probably very familiar with these delicious "Kolocky" cookies. If you're not Polish, you're probably very familiar with these delicious "Thumbprint" cookies! :)  Either way, these cookies are very simple to make, very low-point, and the type of cookie you can make as "sweet" as you desire.

Kolocky or Thumbprint Cookies
- 1/2 cup butter (I used Land O Lakes Light Canola butter)
- 1 cup flour
- 3 oz. fat free cream cheese
- Any flavor fruit spread (A sugar free Red Raspberry fruit spread was used for this batch).
Mix butter, flour, and cream cheese in a mixer. Roll out on flour board, thinner than cutout cookies, thicker than paper. Cut out little circles and place on cookie sheet. Make a small indent in the center and add a small teaspoon of any flavor fruit spread in the center. Bake at 350 degrees for 10 to 12 minutes or until the bottom is light golden. Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar if you desire a little more sweetness. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings = 16
Serving size = 1
Points per serving = 1.3

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Pecan Snowball Cookies


It's that time of year, bringing Christmas cheer, for goodness sakes it's time to bake, so great recipes can be found right here. :) Ok maybe that's not how the song goes but it's still a catchy tune. These melt-in-your-mouth cookies will be the hit of any holiday party!


- 1 cup butter
- 1/2 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 3/4 cup chopped (small) pecans
- Additional powdered sugar to roll cookies in

Mix butter, powdered sugar, and vanilla. Combine flour and salt and add to cream mixture. Stir in pecans. Roll into balls and bake on ungreased baking sheet for 12 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool slightly and roll in powdered sugar. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

"It's the most wonderful time of the year." - Anonymous