Monday, September 30, 2013

Quinoa Meatballs


These savory meatballs are made with ground turkey. Ground turkey can often times become dry while baking, but with the added quinoa and homemade meat sauce, they're very moist, flavorful, and high in protein. 


- 1 lb. lean ground turkey
- 1/4 cup quinoa
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 tsp. paprika
- 1/2 tsp. oregano
- 1 garlic gloved, diced
- 1 egg

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Place quinoa and 3/4 cup water into a small saucepan and heat to boiling. Reduce heat, cover, and let cook for about 12 minutes (until the liquid is absorbed), stirring frequently.

In a large bowl, mix ground turkey, salt, pepper, paprika, oregano, garlic and egg. Add in quinoa and combine thoroughly. Roll turkey into balls and line a baking dish with meatballs. Top meatballs with meat sauce and place in oven. Cook for 30 minutes. Remove and enjoy with your favorite side dishes.

BBQ Meat Sauce

- 1/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup vinegar
- 1/4 tsp. onion powder
- 1 Tbs worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 Tbs teriyaki sauce
- 1 Tbs splenda
- 1/2 cup ketchup

Combine all ingredients and pour evenly onto meatballs before baking.

If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

"You are loved more than you will ever know, by someone who died to know you." - Romans 5:8

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Apple Butter Pork Chops


Pork and apples go very well together, so why not pork and apple butter? Apple butter gives the pork a sweet apple taste as well as adds moisture to your pork chops! Not a cook? With just a few ingredients, anyone can create this amazing meal in minutes!


- 4, 4 oz. lean, thin pork chops
- 1/4 cup apple butter
- salt and pepper
- dash of Creole seasoning (optional) if you want to add a little spice or "kick" to the pork chops

Preheat the grill to 350 degrees. Add a pinch of Creole seasoning to the apple butter (I used a little less than 1/8 tsp.) and mix. Apply one tablespoon of apple butter mixture to each of the four pork chops, both sides. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and place on grill. Grill for 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Remove and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

“Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.” 
- Allen Saunders

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

My Hospice Journal - The Blessings of One Tomato


On Tuesday's I go visit my sweet hospice patient. He's only the fourth hospice patient I've had so far, but the first one who does not have any kind of debilitating illness that causes him not to be able to communicate, coherently anyway. He is very lucid and talks endlessly about his life's journey, his wife (who he lost quite a few years ago) and always before I leave, brings up his garden. He isn't able to tend to it much these days, but his family helps him out. Every week before I leave he tells me to go check to see if there's a ripened tomato for me to take home. I gladly oblige, since I am a big tomato lover and all my tomatoes have been involuntarily given to all the squirrels in our neighborhood!!!

Yesterday's visit was, again, sweet and wonderful. I could tell he was a bit more tired than usual but it didn't stop him from telling me more about his life, and even throwing in a joke or two. After lying on the couch for awhile I watched as he was safely transferred to his favorite chair. The process of moving him just a couple of feet took about five minutes and visibly wore him out completely. After he was all situated in his chair, he looked up at me as if to subtly say, "I'm tired and this is starting to kinda suck."

This afternoon I got a message that my sweet hospice patient passed away. Reconnected with his wife, disconnected from any and all medical equipment, and happily tending to the biggest garden he's ever seen... I couldn't help but smile through my tears. 

I cherish the blessings I've been given to share in these patients' lives, if only for a very short time. I have loved each and every one of my hospice patients and have asked them to say a prayer for all of us as we continue our life's journey here on earth.

As for tomorrow, I plan to cherish this last tomato, slice by slice, thinking of my friend and looking forward to the next patient to bless my life.

R.I.P. sweet man. I will miss you.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Caramel Pecan Brownies


A sweet tooth tonight led me to wanting some of those chocolate turtle candies. Since I did not have any of those around, I decided the next best thing was to make "turtle brownies". Fat-free caramel and only a few tablespoons of pecans filled these brownies with a whole lot of "yum" without a lot of calories. So get a cup of coffee, serve yourself a brownie, and enjoy. :)


- 1 box of Betty Crocker low-fat brownie mix
- 1 egg
- 1 Tbs vegetable oil
- 2 Tbs fat-free Smucker's caramel syrup
- 2 Tbs chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, combine brownie mix, egg, and oil. Pour into an 11-inch by 7-inch baking dish (or 9-inch by 9-inch). Drizzle caramel on top and sprinkle with pecans. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool and enjoy by drizzling one more teaspoon of caramel on top of each serving. If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

"Keep calm and eat a brownie." - Anonymous 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Low-Point Cashew Chicken Salad


What happens when you take several delicious ingredients, combine them together, and create a wonderful recipe that is savory and delightful? You end up eating more than just one serving; but that's just FINE with this low-point appetizing chicken salad!

Low-Point Cashew Chicken Salad


- 3, 4 oz. boneless chicken breasts
- pinch salt and pepper
- 1/2 tsp. dry Italian seasoning
- 2 Tbs light Zesty Italian dressing
- 1/4 cup light mayonnaise
- 1 Tbs light sour cream
- 2 Tbs sweet relish
- 1/4 tsp. dill seed
- 2 Tbs cashews, chopped fine

Preheat grill or oven to 400 degrees. Sprinkle salt and pepper and Italian seasoning over chicken. Drizzle Zesty Italian dressing over chicken, place in a baking dish or on the grill and cook for 15 or 20 minutes (until chicken is cooked through). Remove from heat and let cool for several minutes. Cut up chicken into small pieces and place in a medium bowl. Add mayonnaise, sour cream, relish, dill seed, cashews, and combine. Spoon chicken salad on top of a bed of lettuce salad and enjoy! If you'd like a printer-friendly version of this recipe, Click Here.

Total servings - 4
Serving size - 1
Points per serving - 4
Points plus per serving - 4

"Follow your own inner compass." - Anonymous