Avocado Smoothie : BA Cleanse 2014

Anyone who isn’t living under a rock probably knows all about how the East Coast got slammed with another snow storm this week.  Dave, the doggies, and I got snowed in for two days!  Snow days just aren’t as fun as they used to be- both of us had to work 😦

I just had to do something to warm us up and remind us of the summer.  For our snack, I decided to make this awesome smoothie that I had tried during our Food Lover’s Cleanse.  This avocado smoothie is light and refreshing, and I loved using Coconut Water instead of milk or yogurt.  It might sound weird, but try it!  It’s delish and even dairy free!

Avocado Smoothie

Serves 2

Ingredients:

1 ripe Avocado

2 cups Coconut Water (original, not flavored or sweetened)

1-2 teaspoons Agave Syrup

2 teaspoons Fresh Lime Juice 

Directions:

1.  Combine ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth.  Add extra lime juice to taste.

Recipe from:  Bon Appetit

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Try some of my other smoothie recipes!

Kiwi-Strawberry-Mango Smoothie

Kiwi-Strawberry-Mango Smoothie

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

Tropical Green Smoothie

Tropical Green Smoothie

 

 

 

Tex-Mex Fish Tacos (Guest Post)

Hello friends!  I’ve been enjoying the beautiful weather we’ve been having here in Philly… how about you?  

Today I want to introduce you to Meredith from ReadySetEat.com.  She will be posting an amazing recipe for you today that is just perfect for this time of year:  Fish Tacos!  I have never tried to make them on my own but I cannot wait to try this recipe.  It sounds fresh and so delish!  

 

Easy Summer Dinner: Tex-Mex Fish Tacos

Is there anything more summery than fresh seafood? Fish, shrimp, scallops and crab are delicious all year round, but there’s just something about eating seafood in the summertime that makes you feel like you’re lounging poolside even if you’re stuck in an office or miles away from the nearest beach!

One of the most popular summer seafood dishes is, unsurprisingly, also one of the most delicious: fish tacos. Fish tacos are one of those meals that seems to pop up on every menu at every restaurant the minute it gets warm out, and for good reason. Instead of your typical beef, steak or chicken tacos, fish tacos tend to be a little lighter and are bursting with summery flavors like lime, cilantro and crunchy jicama.

These Tex-Mex Fish Tacos are topped with a fresh slaw, heart-healthy avocado and a zippy salsa, putting them into the delicious category of good-for-you tomato recipes. In place of the avocado, these tacos would also be delicious with your favorite guacamole recipe for extra flavor. They make an easy weeknight dinner but are also definitely impressive enough for entertaining friends and family; they’re perfect for a tasty twist on taco night. Make them from the comfort of your own kitchen and you’ll never feel the need to splurge on them during a dinner out for the rest of summer!

Tex-Mex Fish Tacos

Total Time: 45 min

Serves: 4

• 1 pound pollock or cod fillets, thawed if frozen

• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

• 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

• PAM® Grilling Spray

• 1 can (14.5 oz each) Hunt’s® Petite Diced Tomatoes, drained

• 1/3 cup finely chopped red onion

• 1 tablespoon minced jalapeno pepper

• 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

• 2 teaspoons minced garlic

• 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

• 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

• 1 teaspoon granulated sugar

• 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

• 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

• 1 cup julienned jicama

• 1 cup shredded napa cabbage

• 1/4 cup shredded carrot

• 12 white corn tortillas (6 inch), heated

• 1 large avocado, cut into 24 slices

For the Fish:

Sprinkle fish with salt and pepper. Spray a grill pan with grilling spray; heat over medium-high heat.

Place fish in the pan and cook for 5 to 7 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily with a fork (if you’re using a meat thermometer, it should read 145°F). Cool slightly and shred with forks.

For the Salsa:

Combine tomatoes, red onion, jalapeno, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, olive oil, sugar, kosher salt and pepper in a medium bowl; set aside.

Complete the Tacos!

Combine jicama, cabbage and carrot in a medium bowl. Place 2 tablespoons fish in the center of each tortilla. Top with about ¼ cup of the jicama mixture, 2 tablespoons salsa and 2 slices avocado. Fold in half and serve immediately.

Tex-Mex Fish Tacos

Author Bio: This is a guest post by Meredith K. on behalf of Hunt’s®. For easy summer recipes, or for a classic easy lasagna recipe or easy meatloaf recipe, visit http://www.hunts.com.

Thank you Meredith for sharing such an awesome recipe with us!  I want to eat these now!

Southwest Chicken Melts

The past two weeks have been so super busy for me.  Besides my normal jam-packed weekends, work has been crazy, I have been ontop of my workout schedule, and I have been shopping like a maniac to get ready to move!  Who has time to make a great dinner when there’s a sale on duvet covers at Bed Bath?

Oh, and I should probably mention… that a lot of my free lunch-break time has been spent with my dear Kindle reading the second book of 50 Shades of Gray.  Talk about deeeeelish.

I wanted to share today’s recipe with you not only because it was really yummy, but because I’m probably going to make it again soon.  Yesterday marked the boyfriend Dave’s first day on a new diet.  He changed around some things and also wants to do LOW-NO CARBS for three weeks.  Ugh.  I think Chicken Melts will be our new theme for dinner.  (I was hoping for that to be stuffed potatoes, but clearly those will have to wait)

This recipe stood out to me and has been saved in “My Recipe” box for months because of the Roasted Poblanos… mmmmmmmmmmmm!

What was really special about this dinner is that my Dad helped me make it.  My dad has a few specialties… he makes a mean Grilled Cheese, Captain Crunch with Chocolate Milk, Sweet & Spicy Bacon, and really, really, really good Roasted Red Peppers.  While I’ve been meaning to learn how to do the Peppers for a while, I haven’t quite found the time yet, so when he was coerced offered to help me with the Poblanos, I was so excited.

Poblano Chiles ready to roast! Thanks Dad!

Southwest Chicken Melts

Recipe inspired by:  Sunset, 2010

Makes:  4 Servings

Ingredients:

2 Tablespoons of Oil (I use Sunflower Seed Oil)

4 Poblano Chiles

4 Chicken Breasts (if you have the monster-huge ones, slice them in half)

2 teaspoons Cumin

1/2 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper

1 teaspoon Sea Salt

Black Pepper

Lime Wedges

1 Avocado, pitted & sliced

1/2-1 Cup Shredded Cheese (I used Cabot Reduced Fat Jalapeno Cheddar)

Directions:

1.  Put your oven on the broil setting.  Prepare a broiler pan with water.  Rub 1 Tablespoon of oil on the chiles.  Place the Chiles on the broiler pan and put in the oven (dont forget to leave the door open on broil!).  Keep your eye on the peppers, as you’ll need to turn the chiles 90 degrees (with tongs) once the skin ontop has browned.  Repeat until all sides are dark brown or charred.  

2.  Take the “burnt” chiles and plop them right into a brown paper bag.  Either place the bag in a plastic bag to avoid leakage or use a brown paper grocery bag wrapped in a plastic bag (we save ours when we go shopping!).  Close the paper bag and allow the chiles to steam for 10-20 minutes and let cool.  Leave the broiler on, you’ll use it later.

3.  Meanwhile, you can rub or spray 1 a little bit of oil over the chicken breasts.  Combine the seasonings (cumin, cayenne, salt, pepper) and sprinkle over the chicken breasts.  Grill the chicken or use a grill pan and cook, turning once until browned and cooked through (maybe 5 minutes each side if they’re thin sliced).  

4.  Take the cooled chiles and peel off the skin running under cold water if need be.  Slice off the top.  Slice in half and remove seeds to lower the heat, leave them in to keep it hot.

5.  Squeeze some lime over the chicken, top with avocado slices, a reserved roasted poblano, and a sprinkle to a 1/4 cup of cheese.  Put the assembled chicken breasts onto the broiler pan and broil for maybe 3 minutes until the cheese starts to bubble and just brown.  Enjoy!

Shred your own cheese! A nice cheddar or jack cheese would do here. I had a block of reduced fat and like to go a little healthier whenever possible.

I used some extra avocado since only 2 of us wanted it and it was just too good to waste!

TaDa!!

 

MMM… getting hungry today thinking about this one!  We ate the melts with a side salad, but you could do black beans, rice, or even put it on a nice crusty roll if you’re not trying to Low-Carb like Dave!

Another variation would be to buy a jar of roasted red peppers which will cut down on the time it takes to make these and also would cut down on the heat.

 

Avocado Sriracha Toast

I found myself with an extra Avocado the other day, and there was no way I was going to waste it!

One of my favorite little healthy snacks is this:

Avocado Sriracha Toast:

Supplies:  Trader Joe’s Whole Wheat British Muffin (or other bread), Fat Free (again, or regular) Cream Cheese, 1/2 Avocado, Sriracha Hot Sauce, and Sea Salt

Take a Whole Wheat English Muffin, toast it, and then spread on some Fat Free Cream Cheese (about 1 Tablespoon for both sides, you don’t need much).

Next, halve your avocado, take out the nut, and slice it into chunks.  Put the chunks evenly on both sides of the English Muffin and smush away with a fork.  

Add a few drops of Sriracha Hot Sauce, a sprinkle of Sea Salt, and enjoy!

 

What’s your favorite thing to do with leftover Avocados?  I’d love to hear!

Avocado!

Nom nom nom

 

Portobello Omelette

Eggs are my FAVORITE.

In case you couldn’t tell… check out this amazing Hash Brown recipe, or this protein-packed Poached Egg with Quinoa recipe, or even this fun Breakfast Baked Potato I cooked up back in March!

Dave always makes fun of me because in an ideal world, I would eat eggs every breakfast and every dinner.

While Dave was away last week, my Mom and I got into a package of Portobello Mushrooms.  This has been our tradition; when Dave isn’t around… we eat mushrooms.  It’s one of the only foods he won’t touch, and we love ’em!  I had bought a family-pack of Port’s at Wegmans to make Mushroom Burgers and we had one leftover.  What to do with it?  Make it with eggs!

Portobello Mushroom Burger recipe coming soon!! Here’s a little preview for you 🙂

This turned out to be my absolute best Omelette I’ve ever made.  It was a great combination of flavors and textures, and I’ve finally learned to be patient and not burn the crap out of the bottom.  It’s sooo worth the wait.

Portobello Omelette (with Onion, Broccoli, and Avocado)

a Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook

Ingredients:

1 teaspoon Light Butter

1/2 Portobello Mushroom, washed, patted dry, and chopped

1/4 Onion, sliced thin

1 Egg

2 Egg Whites

1/2 cup Broccoli, chopped

1/2 Avocado, cubed

1/4 cup Shredded Reduced Fat Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Sea Salt, Black Pepper

Directions:

1.  Heat light butter in a medium-sized pan.  Add mushrooms and onion.  Saute over medium heat until the onions are translucent (I did it for about 4-5 minutes or so).

2.  Scramble the egg and 2 egg whites in a bowl.  Add a Tablespoon of water.  Using water instead of milk will keep the eggs nice and fluffy.  Pour the scrambled eggs over the mushrooms and onions.  Add the broccoli.

3.  Keep on medium heat and let cook until the bottom has solidified.  Add a sprinkle of salt and pepper.  You can also swirl the pan around to re-arrange the uncooked egg more evenly.  Put a lid on the pan.  

4.  After about 3 or 4 minutes, lift up the lid.  If the top layer is solidified, flip the egg if you can.  If not, don’t worry about it.  Add the cheese evenly and avocado piece by piece to evenly distribute.  Fold the omelette with a large, flat spatula and cover again for 2-3 minutes.  

5.  Enjoy!!

Here’s what the egg looked like right before I flipped it. Keeping the head on medium will prevent the eggs from burning. It takes longer but it’s worth it.

Added some shredded cheddar and avocado

Finished product… OMG! Amazing. Avocado in eggs = heaven.

Summer Salad

Usually when I come home from work and working out, the last thing I feel like doing is making a fancy dinner.  If I put together a salad or some stir-fry… chances are that I won’t be writing about it on the blog.

With that being said, this “ordinary” weeknight dinner salad was just too pretty and too delicious to not brag about!

Summer Salad

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Makes 1 Serving @  5 WW Points
Ingredients:
1/4 Head Iceberg Lettuce, torn
1/4 Champagne Mango
1/4 Cucumber
1/4 Avocado
1 slice Bacon, cooked crisp
6 Grape Tomatoes
4 Green Beans
Green Onion, Sea Salt &  Black Pepper
1 teaspoon Sunflower Seeds
1/4 lb Cooked Shrimp
Strawberry Balsamic Vinegar
Directions:
1.  Chop all of the ingredients except the shrimp.  Mix in a large bowl with the iceberg lettuce.  Pull the tails off of the shrimp and top the mixed salad.
2.  Dress the salad with some chopped green onion, a sprinkle of sea salt, and a few grinds of black pepper.  Sprinkle w/ a teaspoon of Sunflower Seeds.  Drizzle w/ Strawberry (or plain) Balsamic Vinegar.

Loved this salad!  I am not a big fan of raw veggies, so my salads tend to rely on the heavier, less healthy items such as chicken, cheeses, croutons, nuts, etc.  This salad was the perfect combination of the “good” stuff & the “bad” stuff.  I don’t put oil on my salads when I use Vinegar, and trust me, you aren’t missing it.  The touch of salt and pepper enhances the flavors and makes everything delish!

As ginormous as this salad is, believe it or not, it only racks up FIVE Weight Watchers Points.  FIVE!  OMG!

ABC Salsa (Avocado, Bean, & Corn)

It’s been a while since I’ve posted a recipe.  Where have I been?

Besides spending the last two weekends at “the shore”, I have started up a new diet.  I re-joined weight watchers, and also saw a dietitian (John) who filled in a lot of the blanks that Weight Watchers leaves out.

The basic jist of my new “lifestyle” diet.

1.  Weight Watchers:  I’m using the new point system that is a definite upgrade from when I did it two years ago.  It now uses CARBS & FAT = more points and FIBER & PROTEIN = less points.  I get to eat what I want but have to be aware of serving size.  They also allow you to have almost 2 full days extra allowance for days you need some extra points or “splurging” days.  You also gain extra points for workouts.

2.  Tracking on WW:  Since I already have the knowledge of what I should and shouldn’t be eating… the most important part of this all for me is the tracking.  Being held accountable absolutely makes me eat better and be aware of everything going in my mouth.  The new program for WW has an unbelievable Iphone/Ipad app that has made this all a breeze.  You can even scan things right into your phone and their nutrition, point value, and serving size come right up.  Cool.

3.  Upgrade my eating schedule:  The biggest problem John had with my current diet (besides my eating Fiber One “candy bars” he called them) is my eating schedule.

What I was doing:  9am Coffee , 11am Breakfast , 2pm Lunch , 3pm Snack , (workout) , 8:30pm Dinner

What he wants me to do:  8am Breakfast , 10am Snack , 12pm Lunch , 2-3pm Snack , (workout) , 6-6:30pm Snack , 8pm Dinner

He says that my body won’t burn calories until I have actual food in my body… not coffee.  So I had been wasting 2-3 hours every day of time not burning calories.  

4.  Snacks are not Snack-Food:  John’s thoughts on snacks are that they should consist of a protein and a fiber.  He wants me to start thinking of “Snack” as a time to eat, not a type of food.  I’ve been eating fat free Greek Yogurt w/ Allfruit spread or Fig Butter, Cottage Cheese w/ blueberries, Cucumber and Carrots w/ Laughing Cow or String Cheese… etc.

So far, I’m loving the combination of the two!  The weight watchers gives me direction when I want to eat and the motivation to keep track while John is helping me out with what’s really healthy and how to help my body make the changes I want to see.  From now on, I’ll try to remember to include the WW Point Values on all of my recipes!

With all of that being said, I’ve been busy food shopping for new foods and getting used to this new diet.  This past week, I went to the movies and I didn’t want to be hungry, so I made myself a nice little batch of this delicious salsa to much on before I left.  I ate it with Trader Joe’s Reduced Guilt Blue Corn Chips (which are so salty and delicious!).

ABC (Avocado, Bean, & Corn) Salsa

Recipe by:  It’s Good to be the Cook
Makes 4 Small Servings @ 4 WW Points Each
Ingredients:
1 Tomato, chopped
1/2 Avocado, cut into small squares
1/2 can Corn
1/2 can Black Beans
1 teaspoon Garlic, minced
1-2 Tablespoons Lime Juice
Hot Sauce (a couple of shakes)
Salt, Pepper, Cayenne Pepper
Directions:  
1.  Simple… combine all ingredients and stir, adding the Avocado in last to avoid mashing all of the pieces.

This recipe is similar to my Cinco de Mayo Corn Salsa (I really like corn salsa, could you tell?!) but has the beans and a few less ingredients.  It is very easy to make but tastes very good!