Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Tomato-Fennel Pizza


Fennel is one of those vegetables I do not cook with regularly and I'm not sure why. The leaves (fronds) are delicately flavored and similar in shape to dill. The bulb is a crisp, hardy root vegetable and may be sautéd, stewed, braised, grilled, or even eaten raw. It is also a great source of Vitamin C. This delightful pizza, when served to my family, made them sing my praises; so naturally, I'll be making it again real soon. :)


- 1 Tbs olive oil
- Thinly sliced fennel bulb (you can gauge how much you'd like on your pizzas)
- fronds from the fennel stalk (looks similar to dill)
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 tsp. oregano
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1 tube reduced-fat crescent rolls
- 4 Tbs tomato paste
- 1 large tomato, diced
- 4 Tbs reduced-fat shredded mozzarella cheese or Mexican-four cheese blend shredded cheese

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Thinly slice most or all of the fennel bulb (about one and a half to two-inch thin strips). Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. After the oil is hot, turn heat down to medium and add fennel bulb strips, garlic, salt, and oregano. Sauté for several minutes, until fennel and garlic start to turn a brownish color. Remove from heat. On a baking sheet, unroll crescent rolls and take two triangles, match them up, making one rectangle. Do that for the other triangles. The eight triangles will become four rectangles. Bake dough for five minutes. Remove from oven and add one tablespoon of tomato paste to each of the four little pizzas. Top with diced tomatoes and fennel bulb mixture. Spoon one tablespoon of shredded cheese onto each pizza and place back in the oven. Bake pizza for another 7 to 8 minutes. Remove, top with fennel fronds, and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

"I am not afraid of tomorrow; for I have seen yesterday and I love today." - William Allen White

Friday, September 23, 2011

Low-Point Garlic and Parmesan Crusted Pork Cutlets


The best way to describe how great-tasting this pork cutlet entre' is, is probably just to say my family can't wait to for me to fix it again. :) They loved the garlic and parmesan crusted coating, making it hard to believe it's low point. Hope you enjoy this wonderful recipe just as much.

Low-Point Garlic and Parmesan Crusted Pork Cutlets
- 1 lb. (or a little over) pork tenderloin
- 1 slice white bread
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- 1 tsp. garlic powder or 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp. sea salt or kosher salt
- 1/4 cup Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 egg
- 1 Tbs water
- 2 Tbs olive oil
Cut the pork loin into five equal-portioned pork chops. Toast bread and place in food processor along with parmesan, salt, pepper, garlic, and Panko. Pulse until you have small to medium sized bread crumbs. Transfer the crumb mixture into a shallow bowl. Place flour in second shallow bowl. In a third shallow bowl beat egg with water until egg is no longer stringy. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dip the pork chops in the flour to lightly dust, shaking off excess, then dip in the egg mixture, and finally the bread crumb mixture. Cook the pork until golden brown on both sides and cooked through. Enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - 5 
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 5.5

"Remember, a real decision is measured by the fact that you've taken new action. If there's no action, you haven't truly decided." - Tony Robbins

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Low-Point Chicken Cacciatore

A hearty dish to warm you up during these chilly fall days. This wonderful chicken cacciatore with a combination of tomatoes, mushrooms, green peppers and more will give you a savory taste with every bite.

Low-Point Chicken Cacciatore
- 5, 4 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 1/2 Tbs olive oil
- 1 small green bell pepper, chopped
- 1 tsp. onion powder or 1/4 cup chopped onion
- 1 garlic clove, chopped
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1 1/2 Tbs capers
- 1/2 tsp. oregano
- 1, 14.5 oz. can diced tomatoes, with juice
- 1/4 cup chopped mushrooms
- 1 bay leaf, optional
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes, optional
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- Pam cooking spray
Cut chicken into small cubes. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and onion powder and dredge the chicken pieces through flour. Heat large skillet over medium-high heat with olive oil. Saute chicken, stirring occasionally to evenly cook, until brown (approximately six minutes). Remove chicken and spray same skillet with Pam cooking spray. Add the bell pepper and garlic and saute for about five minutes. Add wine and bay leaf and let cook until wine is reduced by half. Remove bay leaf and add capers, oregano, tomatoes, mushrooms, chicken broth, and red pepper flakes. Return the chicken to the skillet and simmer for about 15 minutes (or until chicken is cooked through). Sprinkle with fresh basil and serve over rice, noodles, or tortellini and enjoy. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - About 6 cups
Serving size - 1 cup
Points per serving - 4

"If we're growing, we're always going to be out of our comfort zone." - John Maxwell

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Low-Point Chorizo and Black Bean Burrito


Chorizo (pork sausage) has such a mouth-watering savory taste, you don't even need to add taco seasoning to this wonderful burrito recipe. Wrapped in a flour tortilla or spooned on top of a bed of lettuce, this recipe is scrumptious!

Low-Point Chorizo and Black Bean Burrito


- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 4 Chorizo Spicy Sausage Links, casing removed (about 10.5 oz)
- 1 tsp. garlic powder or 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 Tbs onion, minced
- 1/2 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 Tbs green chiles
- 1/2 cup diced tomatoes, drained
- 1 small green bell pepper, chopped (optional)
- lettuce
- Light sour cream
- Mexican-style four-cheese blend shredded cheese
- 8, small 6" flour tortillas
- Pam cooking spray

In a large skillet, heat olive oil. Add chorizo meat (without casing) and brown, chopping into small pieces as you stir. If olive oil soaks up too quickly, move chorizo to one side of the skillet and spray empty side with Pam cooking spray. Gently push chorizo to other side and add more cooking spray if needed. Cook until chorizo is done and then add garlic, onion, black beans, chiles, diced tomatoes, and bell pepper. Continue cooking until heated through (or if you're using bell pepper, cook until it begins to soften a little bit). Turn off heat. Spray another skillet with Pam cooking spray and place over medium heat. Add tortillas and slightly brown or warm on each side, making sure the tortilla does not become stiff. You're ready to build your burrito! Add one-fourth cup chorizo mixture in the center of tortilla. Top with lettuce, one tablespoon of shredded cheese, and one tablespoon of sour cream. Roll up and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

Total servings - 8 (1/4 cups)
Serving size - 1 (1/4 cup)
Points per serving - 4 (However, with 1 Tbs cheese and 1 Tbs sour cream the total points is 5)

NOTE: By omitting the flour tortilla and spooning 1/4 cup chorizo mixture on a bed of lettuce instead, the total points are 2.2. Add 1 Tbs cheese and 1 Tbs sour cream for a total of 3.2 points.

"The only real stumbling block is fear of failure. In cooking, you've got to have a what-the-hell attitude." - Julia Child 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Low-Point Pork Schnitzel Sandwich

Schnitzel: A thin slice of meat, dipped in batter, and fried. What can be better than that? By lightly pounding a pork chop cutlet, flattening it out to one-fourth-inch thick, even a small four-ounce pork chop provides enormous satisfaction and great taste! Try using the savory strawberry mayonnaise recipe below. A little dollop on top and your tastebuds will thank you!

Low-Point Pork Schnitzel Sandwich
- 5, 4 oz. thin boneless pork chop cutlets, fat removed
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp. Goya Adobo seasoning
- 1 tsp. paprika
- 1/8 tsp. pepper
- 1 egg
- 2 Tbs 1% or fat-free milk
- 1/2 cup Panko, Japanese bread crumbs (you will have a little excess leftover; discard)
- 2 Tbs olive oil
- Pam cooking spray with olive oil
- Saran wrap
- Arnold Sandwich Thins (bread rolls)
Preheat oven to 175 degrees. Place each pork chop on a flat service or cutting board. Take a piece of saran wrap and place it over the top of the pork chop. Take a meat mallet and lightly pound pork chop, pulling outward as you pound to make it flatter and larger in size. Get out three shallow bowls. In one bowl, add flour, Adobo, paprika and pepper. Mix. In the second bowl, mix egg and milk. In the third bowl place the Panko bread crumbs. Taking one pork chop at a time, dip pork chop in egg mixture, then flour mixture (shaking off excess), and coat with Panko. Place pork chops in large skillet heated with olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook/fry on each side for about 4 minutes. Use Pam cooking spray if you need a little more oil. Once pork chops are done, place them on a grill rack that has been placed on a baking sheet and put them in the oven to keep warm while the other pork chops are frying. Once pork chops are done, place on Arnold Sandwich Thins and top with strawberry mayonnaise. Enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Strawberry Mayo
- 1/4 cup fat-free mayonnaise
- 1 Tbs strawberry preserves (you can also use raspberry)
- 1/2 Tbs lemon juice
- pepper to taste
Mix ingredients and use as condiment for schnitzel sandwiches.
Total servings - 5 schnitzel sandwiches
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 5.4 (without sandwich thins or strawberry mayo); 6.7 (with sandwich thins but without strawberry mayo); or 7 (with sandwich thins and 1 tablespoon strawberry mayo).

"I know and I believe that everything I got is everything I need." - O.A.R.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Seven-Minute Vanilla Ice Cream


Kudos to my daughter, who actually told me about this recipe and went into the kitchen to make it herself. When she told me what she was going to do, I thought "ice cream? We don't even have an ice-cream maker!" I wasn't sure what she was going to end up concocting but when she came back 7 minutes later and told me to take a bite, I was speechless (because my mouth was full of ice cream)! I immediately went into the kitchen to try it myself. Within 7 minutes, I was eating more ice cream! You just have to try this! Go! Now! Make ice cream and be happy! :)


- 2, gallon-sized Ziploc bags
- ice cubes
- 6 Tbs table salt
- 1 cup 1% milk
- 1/2 tsp. vanilla
- 2 Tbs sugar

In one gallon-sized bag, fill it 1/3 full with ice cubes and add the salt. Set aside while you prepare ingredients in the other Ziploc bag. Add milk, vanilla, and sugar to the other Ziploc bag. Squeeze out most of the air and Ziploc tightly (so the salt does not seep in). Fold bag over in half and insert it into the Ziploc bag with the ice. Press out some of the air and close tightly. Shake bag vigorously for 5 to 7 minutes, using gloves or oven mits, because the bag gets very cold! Open bag of ice and remove the other bag of ice cream! Dish out ice cream with a spoon into a bowl and go crazy! Add a tablespoon of sugar-free chocolate syrup and some fun candy sprinkles, if desired. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

"The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug." - Mark Twain

Friday, September 9, 2011

Low-Point Vanilla Pudding with Chocolate Crumble

Need a quick and easy dessert that's filling, fabulous, but not fattening? Try this simple tasty treat without feeling the guilt of reaching for something to eat! :)

Low-Point Vanilla Pudding with Chocolate Crumble
- 1 small box instant fat-free, sugar-free vanilla pudding
- 2 cups 1% milk
- 1/2 cup Kellogg's Special K Chocolatey Delight, coarsely crumbled
- 3 Tbs brown sugar
- 1 Tbs Land O Lakes Light butter with canola oil, melted
In a bowl, whisk pudding and milk until pudding thickens. Spoon pudding into 6 little dessert cups or ramekins. In a separate bowl, mix cereal, brown sugar, and butter. Top each pudding cup with crumb topping and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - 6
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 2.6

"We're not about what happened on 9/11. We're about what happened on 9/12." - Jeff Parness

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Low-Point Pan-Fried Swai Sliders

Swai Slider with Hawaiian Bread Rolls
Swai Sandwich with Arnold Sandwich Thins

Swai is a moist, flaky, mild-flavored white fish that is delicious and less expensive than most other fish you find at the store. Very reasonably priced (I found a bag of frozen Swai, 24 oz., at our local Target for $5.99). I prepared these by pan-frying them with a coating of seasoned Panko (Japanese bread crumbs easily found at local grocery stores and have fewer calories than regular bread crumbs). I must say, these are FANTASTIC! The sauce I created for these sliders is an amazing condiment to top off these little sandwiches. A definite must-try recipe!

Low-Point Pan-Fried Swai Sliders
- 2, 5 oz. Swai fillets
- 1 Tbs olive oil
- 4 Tbs Panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
- 1 Roma tomato
- salt and pepper (or your favorite seasonings to taste)
- Pam cooking spray with olive oil
- Kings Hawaiian sweet bread rolls
Spray large skillet with Pam cooking spray. Heat skillet over medium-high heat. Place olive oil in a shallow bowl. Take a pastry brush and brush both fish, both sides. Coat eat side of fish with 1 tablespoon of Panko bread crumbs (four tablespoons total) and press bread crumbs onto fish. Turn heat down to medium heat, add seasoning to fish, and place in the skillet sprayed with cooking spray. Fry on each side about 4 minutes (or until fish flakes with a fork). Remove fish and cut each fish into 4 equal pieces. Place one piece of fish on bread roll with a slice of tomato. Spread with a little homemade sauce and enjoy!
- 2 Tbs fat-free mayonnaise
- 1/2 tsp. white wine vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. worcestershire sauce
- 1 tsp. sweet pickle relish
- 1 tsp. chopped capers
- 1/4 tsp. lemon juice
- salt and pepper to taste
Mix ingredients and top each slider with a little sauce. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - 4
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 3.1
NOTE: Another option for a bigger fish sandwich taste would be to replace the King's Hawaiian bread with a Sandwich Thin roll (I bought Arnold Sandwich Thins). If you use these, cut the fish in half instead of into four sections. One half of the fish on an Arnold Sandwich Thin is 3.8 total points!

"The bad news is, there is no key to the universe. The good news: it was never locked." - Swami Beyondananda

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Low-Point Butternut Squash with Crumb Topping

Is this a side dish or a dessert? You decide. This savory and sweet butternut squash recipe has a texture similar to that of a custard. The wonderful-tasting crumb topping, consisting of only three ingredients, will make everyone believe you spent way more time on this dish than you actually did. Easy and delicious -- a great recipe for the fall season!

Low-Point Butternut Squash with Crumb Topping
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups cooked butternut squash, mashed
- 1 cup Splenda granulated sugar substitute
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 1/4 cup softened Land O Lakes light butter with canola oil
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Peel, seed, and chop butternut squash. Boil squash in a large sauce pan over medium-high heat until fork can be easily inserted and then mash the squash. Beat eggs until smooth and lemon colored. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix well (mixture will be a little runny). Pour mixture in a buttered 8-inch by 8-inch baking dish and bake until set (about 20 to 25 minutes). Remove from oven and cover with crumb topping.
Crumb Topping Ingredients:
- 3 Tbs softened Land O Lakes light butter with canola oil
- 1 cup crushed cornflakes
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- A few sprays of "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" spray
Mix all ingredients well and cover butternut squash with crumb topping. Spray butter over top of crumb topping, place back in oven for about 7 more minutes, remove and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - 9
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 2.8

"Live out of your imagination, not your history." - Stephen Covey

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Low-Point Sirloin Steak with Dijon White-Wine Sauce

Though we don't eat steak very often, every once in awhile we just have to have one. These delicious petite sirloin steaks are very satisfying; and the succulent dijon white-wine sauce has a taste that's very pleasing to the palate! 

Low-Point Sirloin Steak with Dijon White-Wine Sauce
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- cooking spray with olive oil
- 1 Tbs chopped onion
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tsp. dijon mustard 
- salt
- pepper
- 1/3 cup white wine
- 1 beef bouillon cube
- 2, 4 oz. petite sirloin steaks
- 1 or 2 tsp. corn starch or flour
In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat. Spray a little bit of cooking spray with olive oil in the skillet as well. Add onion and garlic and saute' for several minutes. Season steaks with salt and pepper and add to skillet. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side and then add white wine, mustard, and beef bouillon cube. Cook until bouillon cube dissolves. Remove steaks and keep warm. Add 1 or 2 teaspoons of corn starch or flour to skillet and stir until sauce starts to thicken, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Spoon sauce over steaks and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.
Total servings - 2
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 6

"Happiness always sneaks through a door you didn't know you left open." - Pamela Sargent