Tag Archives: fruit

Healthy Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits

Healthy Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

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Grilled Calamari with Grapefruit, Olives and Pine Nuts

Grilled Calamari with Grapefruit, Olives and Pine Nuts at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

I love calamari, but most of the time when I see it on a menu, it’s breaded and fried. When we go into Atlanta and have lunch at Legal Sea Foods after visiting the Georgia Aquarium, I take the opportunity to indulge in an order of fried calamari off their gluten free menu.

What I really miss it having calamari the way my mom used to make it – Italian style in a tomato based sauce served on top of pasta. She also use to sauté calamari steaks in butter and vermouth after dipping it in an egg and wheat germ batter. If anyone knew how to serve calamari, it was my mom!

Well, I have to say that celebrity chef and winner of Food Network Star Season Six, Aarti Sequeira also has a way with calamari. In this dish, she combines it with Florida grapefruit, olives, and my favorite nut substitute, pine nuts, for a wonderful wilted salad.

You can find calamari in the freezer section of your grocery store or at an Asian grocery store. If you find it fresh or frozen and whole, here's a tutorial on how to clean it. It's not that hard unless you're squeamish.

To toast your pine nuts, put them in a pan over medium heat and toast them until they start to turn golden. Keep an eye on them, as it's very easy to burn the pine nuts!

For more recipes from Chef Aarti, go to Florida Grapefruit’s Facebook page. Or check out her other healthy grapefruit recipes here at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet like:

More recipes for you grapefruit lovers:

Grilled Calamari with Grapefruit, Olives and Pine Nuts at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Grilled Calamari with Grapefruit, Olives and Pine Nuts

Recipe by Chef Aarti Sequeira

Ingredients

  • 1 pound baby squid (tubes and tentacles), cleaned
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 cup 100% Florida grapefruit juice
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for grilling
  • Pinch red chile flakes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large ruby red grapefruit, cut into segments
  • 1 cup baby arugula, washed and dried completely
  • 1/4 cup green olives (about 8), pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon currants
  • 1 tablespoon toasted pine nuts
  • Salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Pat squid dry with paper towels. Stir together garlic, grapefruit juice, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, red chile flakes and a big pinch of salt and pepper in a large bowl. Separate out 3 tablespoons of this marinade into a smaller bowl, add the squid and toss to coat.
  2. Heat a large grill pan over high heat. Wait until it’s very hot to start cooking or else the squid will stick.
  3. While the pan heats up, toss grapefruit segments, arugula, olives, currants and pine nuts in the large bowl of marinade.
  4. Lightly brush the grill pan with oil. Shake the squid of any excess marinade, lay it on the hot grill and cook about 3 minutes per side for the tubes; cook the tentacles until nice and crispy, about 5 minutes total. Work in batches if necessary. If the squid sticks after 3 minutes, cook another 30 seconds; it will release when it’s cooked.
  5. Toss tentacles into the large bowl. Slice tubes into thin rings. Toss calamari with the arugula mixture. Taste for seasoning. Serve immediately.
Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 25 Minutes
Total Time: 35 Minutes
Servings: Serves 4 to 6
  • Serving size: 1/4 to 1/6 of recipe

Picture and recipe used with permission.

Grapefruit Tart with Cardamom Cream

Grapefruit Tart with Cardamom Cream at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.comI’m sure you’ve seen apples and peaches on tarts. But a grapefruit tart? Why not when it’s from celebrity chef and winner of Food Network Star Season Six, Aarti Sequeira!

Make sure to visit Florida Grapefruit’s  Facebook page and see more of Chep Aarti’s recipes. You can also find more grapefruit recipes at Go Florida Grapefruit.

This Mama’s tips

  • Maldon smoked salt is pure crystal sea salt smoked over sustainable English oak. It has a salty and subtle smoky flavor, and when combined with the sweet and citrus taste, it should be just sublime! You can buy maldon smoked salt [affiliate link] online.
  • Can’t find orange blossom water at your grocery store? You can order Nielsen-Massey Orange Blossom Water [affiliate link] online, too.
  • To save time, buy already cut and peeled grapefruit segments sold in jars or found in the produce section of your grocery store.
  • If you want to prepare your own grapefruit, save the peels. (The ones you don’t use for zesting.) Use them to make candied grapefruit using the method I used to make Candied Ginger. Just make sure to remove as much as the white pith as possible from the peel as it can be bitter.
  • To make this grapefruit tart recipe gluten free, use a premade gluten free pie crust or use a mix to make your own.
Grapefruit Tart with Cardamom Cream at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Grapefruit Tart with Cardamom Cream

For individual tartlets: Divide pie crust among four 4 3.4inch tart pans. Bake at 425 degrees F. for about 10 minutes or just until golden brown.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 5 cardamom pods, crushed
  • 5 extra-large egg yolks, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange blossom water
  • 1 tablespoon Florida grapefruit zest
  • Pinch Kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon heavy cream
  • 1 refrigerated pie crust
  • 3 ruby red Florida grapefruit, peeled, white pith removed, cut into segments
  • Maldon smoked salt, for sprinkling

Directions

  1. Place milk and cardamom pods in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring often, until small bubbles form around the circumference of the saucepan. Turn off heat, cover and steep for 20 minutes.
  2. Beat egg yolks and sugar together in a stand mixer at medium-high speed until pale yellow and very thick, about 5 minutes.
  3. Turn the speed down to low, then add the cornstarch.
  4. Meanwhile, strain milk into a measuring cup. Stir in orange blossom water and grapefruit zest, along with a pinch of salt. Keeping the mixer on low, slowly pour in the milk mixture, beating until just combined. Transfer the milk mixture to a medium saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until it comes to a boil, 5 to 10 minutes. Switch to a whisk; whisk constantly until it has thickened to the texture of pudding. Turn heat off. Stir in heavy cream and then strain into a large bowl. Place plastic wrap on the actual surface of the pastry cream, then refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
  5. Once pastry cream is chilled, pre-heat oven to 425° F. Place pie crust in 9 1/2-inch tart pan. Prick dough evenly with fork to keep it from puffing up in the oven. Bake for about 12 minutes or until the pie crust is just golden brown. Remove from oven and cool.
  6. Just before serving, pour the pastry cream into the tart crust and even out. Decorate with concentric circles of grapefruit segments. Sprinkle with smoked salt and serve immediately.
Prep Time: 3 Hours 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 45 Minutes
Total Time: 4 Hours
Servings: Serves 4 to 6
  • Serving size: 1/4 to 1/6 of tart or 4 to 6 tartlets

Recipe and photo used with permission.

Grapefruit Yogurt Smoothie with Fennel Seed

Grapefruit Yogurt Smoothie with Fennel Seed from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

Here’s another delicious and unique grapefruit based recipe from celebrity chef and winner of Food Network Star Season Six, Aarti Sequeira. It uses an ingredient that’s new to me – fennel seeds that are coated in brightly colored candy. They’re often served at the end of an Indian meal to help folks digest. That’s no surprise as according to Web MD, fennel is used for various digestive problems including heartburn, intestinal gas, bloating, loss of appetite, and even colic in infants.

You can find candy coated fennel seeds at Indian markets or online. Having something to crunch on while you sip on the smoothie will trick your tummy into feeling more satiated than with the smoothie alone!

Chef Aarti’s revealing a new recipe every two weeks through March 18 on the Florida Grapefruit Facebook page. If you’re as big a fan of grapefruit as I am, I’m sure you’ll be checking out more of her recipes for new ideas on how to cook with grapefruit!

Grapefruit Yogurt Smoothie with Fennel Seed from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet

Grapefruit Yogurt Smoothie with Fennel Seed

To reduce calories, replace honey with stevia or Swerve Sweetener.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup 100% Florida grapefruit juice
  • 2 cups plain 2% Greek yogurt
  • 4 frozen bananas
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (gluten free)
  • Big pinch kosher or sea salt
  • 1 tablespoon coarsely ground fennel seeds
  • Fennel seed candy, optional

Directions

  1. Place all the ingredients in the blender (in the order listed for optimal blending).
  2. Whiz together until smooth.
  3. Taste for seasoning, adding more honey if you like.
  4. Pour into 4 glasses, sprinkle with fennel seed candy if desired and serve immediately.
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 15 Minutes
Servings: Serves 4
  • Serving size: 1/4 of recipe

Picture and recipe used with permission.

Kale & Grapefruit Salad with Warm Bacon-Wild Mushroom Dressing

Kale & Grapefruit Salad with Warm Bacon-Wild Mushroom Dressing at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

I love having grapefruit for breakfast. But I’m not fond of cutting open grapefruit every morning and dividing up the sections, even though I have a marvelous grapefruit knife. That’s why I buy those jars of already prepared grapefruit or those little snack cups, with the grapefruit sweetened with fruit juices and perfectly proportioned, for a breakfast sized snack.

Don’t be fooled, grapefruit is not just for breakfast anymore as shown in this terrific salad recipe from celebrity chef and winner of Food Network Star Season Six, Aarti Sequeira. In a recent survey, Florida Grapefruit discovered that nearly 70 percent of Americans ages 45 to 64 think it’s important to taste or try new ethnic foods, recipes or dishes. Chef Aarti’s recipe, Kale & Grapefruit Salad with Warm Bacon-Wild Mushroom Dressing, fulfills Americans’ wish to spice up their everyday dinners and entrees by using of-the-moment ingredients.

She’s revealing a new recipe every two weeks through March 18 on the Florida Grapefruit Facebook page, so stop by and check them out! I’ll be sharing another of her grapefruit recipes here at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet next week, too.

Tips:

  • If you’re allergic to nuts, use pine nuts or pumpkin seeds instead.
  • To make this salad vegetarian or vegan, substitute a soy bacon for the pork bacon.
  • To save time, use jarred or freshly peeled and segmented grapefruit in the produce department at your grocery store.
  • Make sure to use 100% grapefruit juice and not grapefruit “cocktail,” which may have added sugar, corn syrup, or high fructose corn syrup added to it.
Kale & Grapefruit Salad with Warm Bacon-Wild Mushroom Dressing at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Kale & Grapefruit Salad with Warm Bacon-Wild Mushroom Dressing

Ingredients

  • 1 to 2 bunches (about 1 pound) black kale, washed, stalks removed, sliced into 1/4-inch ribbons
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for massaging
  • 3 slices thick-sliced bacon, roughly chopped
  • 8 ounces wild mushrooms, thinly sliced (recommended: crimini and chanterelle)
  • 1 medium shallot, minced (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1/4 cup champagne vinegar
  • 1/4 cup 100% Florida grapefruit juice
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1/3 cup toasted hazelnuts, roughly chopped
  • 1 large ruby red grapefruit, cut into segments
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Place kale in a very large bowl. Sprinkle with a couple of pinches of kosher salt and a very light drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Now, begin “massaging” the kale; squeeze fistfuls of the leaves and rub between your fingers. The kale will begin to wilt within minutes! Once uniformly wilted, set aside on the counter and prepare the dressing.
  2. Grab a medium sauté pan or skillet and place it over medium-low heat. Add bacon pieces and cook, stirring every now and then, until most of the fat has rendered off and bacon bits are brown and just crispy. Using a slotted spoon, remove bacon to paper-towel lined plate. Pour off bacon fat into a measuring cup. If necessary, add enough extra virgin olive oil to make 1/4 cup. Pour back into sauté pan.
  3. Add the mushrooms, stir to coat in the fat, then spread out into an even layer. Don’t touch them for 3 to 5 minutes! They will start to soften and sizzle. Now stir and cook, stirring often until they are golden brown around the edges. Stir in the shallots and cook until the whole mixture is browned and aromatic.
  4. Add champagne vinegar, scraping up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan with your spoon. Turn the heat off. Add 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, the grapefruit juice and 1 tablespoon honey. Stir together, taste for seasoning and adjust according to your palate.
  5. Sprinkle kale with hazelnuts, bacon bits and grapefruit segments. Pour warm dressing over the top and serve immediately.
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 20 Minutes
Total Time: 45 Minutes
Servings: Serves 4
  • Serving size: 1/4 of recipe

Recipe and photo used with permission.

Healthy Baked Plantain Chips Four Ways

Healthy Baked Plantain Chips Four Ways at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

While we were in Florida last month, we dined at the Columbia Restaurant, a classic Cuban style restaurant in the Ybor City section of Tampa. Cuban cuisine is wonderful and much of it is naturally gluten free like the Black Bean Soup and their famous 1905 Salad. Luckily, the restaurant has a gluten free menu on their website, so I was able to research what I could eat ahead of time. If you’re ever in Tampa, I highly recommend stopping by for lunch or dinner!

While we were there, my children (who aren’t gluten free) both had Cuban Sandwiches with a side order of plantain chips. I liked that they were offered a healthier alternative to French fries and thought I’d try making some plantain chips at home. The ones at the restaurant were probably fried, not baked, and were only flavored with salt. I wanted to try baking them and flavoring plantain chips several ways. Not only would baked plantain chips be a healthy alternative to potato chips for a party, but creating sweet as well as savory flavors would surely be a crowd pleaser!

Baked Plantain Chips at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Buying, peeling and cutting plantains

Plantains are sold at most supermarkets nowadays, and can be found near the bananas. For chips making, you want to buy unripe plantains – the greener the better. Don’t worry about back spots on the peel as it doesn’t affect the flesh.

If you have a mandolin slicer, you can cut your chip into even, thin slices. (I have a mandolin and hate using it, go figure.) Otherwise, use a sharp paring knife and make the slices as thin and uniform as possible. The thinner the chip, the crunchier it’ll be!

Baked Plantain Chips at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Making your plantain chips

I find that cooking the chips on parchment paper works best as the paper absorbs any extra oil. However, if you don’t have any in your pantry, using aluminum foil on a baking sheet is fine and cuts down cleanup time. Also, remember to watch your chips closely when cooking as they tend to burn quickly.

I’ve included four flavor mixes in my recipe. Feel free to experiment on your own. Some ideas could include using premade taco seasoning, barbecue rubs, seasoning salts and/or infused oils. Get out the herbs and spices and go nuts!

For more gluten free snack recipes and ideas, check out the Udi’s Gluten Free Community.

Healthy Baked Plantain Chips Four Ways at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Healthy Baked Plantain Chips Four Ways

Ingredients

For Sweet & Spicy Baked Plantain Chips:

  • 2 green plantains
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar or no calorie sugar substitute (granular not liquid)

For Salt & Pepper Baked Plantain Chips:

  • 2 green plantains
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

For Garlic & Onion Baked Plantain Chips:

  • 2 green plantains
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • freshly ground pepper to taste

For Cinnamon Sugar Baked Plantain Chips:

  • 2 green plantains
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon sugar or no calorie sugar substitute (granular not liquid)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Peel the plantain with a sharp knife. Then slice the plantains as thinly as possible with a mandolin or knife.
  3. In a bowl, combine plantain slices, olive oil, and seasonings. Stir gently to coat the plantain chips.
  4. Place parchment paper on a cookie sheet. Place a single layer of plantains on the parchment paper.
  5. Place cookie sheet in oven for 16 to 20 minutes. Turn plantains after 8 minutes.
  6. Plantain chips are done when they start to brown around the edges. Remove from oven and serve.
  7. Chips are best served warm. You can also cool the plantain chips on a baking rack lined with paper towels to soak up any extra oil, and serve them at room temperature, too. Plantain chips keep for about one day.
Prep Time: 25 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 40 Minutes
Servings: Yields 2 to 3 cups
  • Serving size: 1/2 cup

Learn more about living gluten free! Visit udisglutenfree.com/community

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Udi's Gluten Free. The opinions and text are all mine.

 

Grapefruit, Salmon, and Avocado Salad

Grapefruit Salmon and Avocado Salad at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet- thismaacooks.com Photo by Romulo Yanes. Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living. Copyright © 2014.

How are your New Year’s resolutions to eat healthier going? Well, I hope I can inspire you with a recipe from the January/February 2014 issue of Martha Stewart Living that is on newsstands now. I love salmon, avocados and grapefruit, so when I saw a salad that combined these foods, I knew it had to be a winner. This is also a great salad to make if you have some leftover grilled salmon from dinner the night before.

And don’t throw out that grapefruit peel! Instead, use it to make candied grapefruit peel for baking, or to use in hot tea or cocktails. Leave the pith (the white flesh) on the peel and cook it up using the method I used in my Homemade Candied Ginger recipe. If you use a no calorie sugar substitute like Swerve Sweetener [affiliate code], the candied grapefruit peel will be practically calorie free!

Ingredients

  • 2 skinless wild-salmon fillets (each about 8 ounces, 1 inch thick)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 1 Ruby Red grapefruit, peel and pith removed, segmented
  • 1 ripe avocado, pitted, peeled, and sliced
  • 2 cups sunflower shoots, watercress leaves, or a combination of both
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Season salmon with salt and pepper. Place in a 9-inch baking dish. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon oil and sprinkle with half of scallions. Bake until salmon is partially opaque in center, 10 to 12 minutes. Transfer to a dish and let cool.
  2. Break salmon into large pieces and divide among serving dishes. Top each with grapefruit, avocado, greens, and remaining scallions. Season with salt and pepper. Whisk remaining 2 tablespoons oil with lime juice and season with salt. Drizzle dressing over each salad.
Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 35 Minutes
Total Time: 50 Minutes
Servings: Serves 4
  • Serving size: 1/4 of recipe

Photo by Romulo Yanes. Courtesy of Martha Stewart Living. Copyright © 2014. Used with permission.

Homemade edible gifts: Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar

Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

I love the idea of making homemade gifts, especially of the edible kind. Here’s a recipe from the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council that you can easily put together in a few days from either fresh or frozen blueberries. You don’t have to spend a lot on fancy glass bottles either. Cute Mason jars are all the rage these days. And adding a homemade gift tag and a cute ribbon is a nice touch. If you’re going to make a large batch, head to your local Sam’s Club or Costco for the best price on big bags of frozen blueberries.

For more recipes and information on winter fresh blueberries, please visit littlebluedynamos.com

Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Blueberry Balsamic Vinegar

Ingredients

  • 4 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
  • 1 quart white balsamic vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • Zest from 1 lime, green part only, in strips
  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick

Directions

  1. In a large non-reactive saucepan with a potato masher or the back of a large spoon, crush blueberries. Add vinegar, sugar, lime zest and cinnamon. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 20 minutes. Cool slightly.
  2. Pour into a large bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 2 days to allow flavors to blend.
  3. Place a strainer over a large bowl. In batches, ladle blueberry mixture into strainer.
  4. With a large spoon, press out as much liquid as possible. Discard solids.
  5. Pour vinegar into clean glass bottles or jars. Refrigerate, tightly covered, until ready to use. Use in a favorite salad dressing recipe or the following vinaigrette.
Prep Time: 50 Hours
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 50 Hours 30 Minutes
Servings: Makes approximately 5 1/2 cups
  • Serving size: varies

Turkey Orange Meatballs

Turkey Orange Meatballs from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Here’s a healthy holiday party appetizer recipe from the folks at Florida Citrus. To keep this gluten free, make sure to use certified gluten free oats (Bob’s Red Mill is a good choice).

Don’t you love the elegant way they presented the meatballs with the twisted bamboo skewers and the tiny pieces of herbs? Well, if you want to stick the meatballs in a bowl and let your guests spoon them on to their plates along with a few plain toothpicks, I’m sure no one will mind!

And don't forget this recipe during football playoff and bowl game parties, too!

Turkey Orange Meatballs from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Turkey Orange Meatballs

Ingredients

  • 1 pound lean ground turkey
  • 1 cup whole rolled oats
  • 1 Florida orange, peeled and diced
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt, divided
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • 2 cups 100% Florida orange juice
  • 6 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup tomato paste
  • 4 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Fresh herbs for garnish, optional

Directions

  1. In large bowl, combine turkey, oats, orange, egg, Italian seasoning, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Mix well.
  2. Roll mixture into walnut-sized balls, making approximately 28 meatballs.
  3. Place meatballs in large, nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cover and cook, turning occasionally until browned on all sides. Meatballs should be cooked through with no pink remaining in the center.
  4. Whisk together orange juice, vinegar, tomato paste, cornstarch, 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon pepper.
  5. Add orange juice mixture to cooked meatballs in skillet. continue cooking and stir gently until sauce becomes clear and coats meatballs, about 5 minutes.
  6. Serve meatballs on toothpicks garnished with fresh herbs, if desired.
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour
Servings: Makes 7 servings
  • Serving size: 4 meatballs
  • Calories: 210
  • Calories from Fat: 50
  • Total Fat: 6g
  • Saturated fat: 1.5g
  • Unsaturated fat: 4.5g
  • Sodium: 800mg
  • Total Carbohydrates: 24g
  • Sugar: 11g
  • Fiber: 4g
  • Protein: 16g
  • Cholesterol: 60mg

Recipe and photo used with permission.

Gluten Free Oatmeal Crumb Apple Peach Pie

Gluten Free Oatmeal Crumb Apple Peach Pie  at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

After being out for a couple of months due to my brain surgery, I’m glad to join back up with the monthly Secret Recipe Club event. This month’s assignment was to pick a recipe from Flavors by Four, a mother-daughter team of foodies who have been blogging since the end of 2010. I wanted to try a pie recipe using the Pillsbury Gluten Free Dough that was recently sent to me (read my review of Pillsbury Gluten Free Pie Dough here). So I chose their recipe for Oatmeal Crumb Apple Pie. I really like how Flavors by Four explain things step by step with pictures, making it easy for even the most inexperienced cook.

Gluten Free Oatmeal Crumb Apple Peach Pie at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

In addition, what I liked about their Oatmeal Crumb Apple Pie recipe was that it was very easy and quick to make because you could use a store bought frozen pie crust, and that it was Weight Watchers friendly. I had originally wanted to make their Strawberry Rhubarb Pie, because it looked so delicious, but since rhubarb is out of season I couldn’t find any at the store.

Wanting to change things up a bit, I decided to substitute one of the apples with a couple of small peaches as well as make the dessert totally gluten free. However, I found that using Pillsbury Gluten Free Dough and other gluten free ingredients caused the pie to cook much faster even though I baked it at a lower temperature. If you’re not using gluten free ingredients and sticking to Flavors by Four’s original ingredients, make sure to use her temperatures and times. Also,if you don’t have access to coconut palm sugar, you can use brown sugar. Instead of rice starch, you can use corn starch. For the buttery spread, you can use I Can't Believe it's Not Butter or Earth Balance.

Gluten Free Oatmeal Crumb Apple Peach Pie  at This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Gluten Free Oatmeal Crumb Apple Peach Pie

If the crust starts to get too brown, tear aluminum foil into strips and carefully cover the crust while rest of pie continues to bake.

Ingredients

  • 1 gluten free pie crust - frozen, store bought or from your favorite recipe (I used Pillsbury Gluten Free Dough.)
  • 3 medium Fuji apples, cored, peeled, thinly sliced
  • 2 small peaches, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup coconut palm sugar
  • 1 tablespoon rice starch
  • 1/2 cup gluten free old fashioned oatmeal
  • 1/3 cup gluten free all purpose baking mix
  • 3 tablespoons coconut palm sugar
  • 3 tablespoons buttery spread, melted

Directions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 F. Take your premade pie crust and set it aside.
  2. Wash, peel, core and slice your apples. Wash, pit, and thinly slice peaches. Set aside in a large bowl.
  3. In a small mixing bowl add the 1/4 cup of coconut palm sugar, cinnamon and rice starch. Mix well. Add the sugar mixture to the bowl with the apples and peaches. Toss to coat the fruit and set aside for now.
  4. To make the crumble, combine the flour, oatmeal and remaining coconut palm sugar in a bowl. Then melt the buttery spread on a low power in your microwave for 15 seconds at a time until totally melted. Pour the melted spread into the bowl of dry ingredients and mix until combined.
  5. Put the fruit in the pie crust and spread evenly. Then top the fruit with the crumb mixture making sure to spread it out over the entire pie.
  6. Bake the pie until the apples and peaches are tender and the crumb topping is golden brown, about 30-40 minutes.
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 40 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 10 Minutes
Servings: Serves 8
  • Serving size: 1 slice (1/8 of pie)

More from the Secret Recipe Club!

Want to join the Secret Recipe Club? You can sign up here.

Watermelon Agua Fresca and healthy meal planning with eMeals

Aqua Watermelon Agua Fresca

When you’ve gone through a major health crisis like I have, you and your family are faced with reevaluating how the day-to-day stuff like bill paying or laundry is going to get done – and by whom. If your significant other works fulltime, what can s/he do that you can’t? Can the kids help out?  What about friends, relatives, and neighbors? Can you afford to delegate some things, like a paid cleaning or grocery delivery service?

One paid – and reasonably priced – service you may want to consider is eMeals. (I’m part of their Bloggers Network, and make a commission if you sign up with them through one of my links.) I signed up with eMeals because they’re an easy way to organize your meal planning, have a well-managed grocery budget, and enjoy healthy dinners at home – whether you’re going through a health crisis or just want to eat in a healthier way.

My husband, Paul, works long days at a stressful job. However, since I’ve been home from the hospital, he’s cooked very fancy meals from scratch because he enjoys the challenge and finds it relaxing. Now, unless you have a similar person at your house, eMealswould be perfect for your spouse, your sister, or anyone who’s taking care of you who loves to cook, but doesn’t have the time to plan a menu and shopping list.

How eMeals works

First of all, let’s talk price. eMeals is incredibly affordable. For a year’s worth of dinner menus and grocery lists it’s $58. That’s it! You can purchase a 3 month subscription for $21 or a 6 month subscription for $35. You can add on breakfast for $3/month and lunch for $4/month.

Second, eMeals grocery lists work with the following grocery stores: ALDI, Kroger, Publix, Ralphs, Safeway, Target, Walmart, and Whole Foods.

Third, their meal plans work for the following diets and food preferences: Classic Meals, Clean Eating, Paleo, Slow Cooker, Simple Gourmet, Low Carb, Low Fat, Portion Control, Natural & Organic, Vegetarian, and Gluten Free. Note you can change your plan at any time.

If you have other questions, see the eMeals Help page.

Sample eMeal recipe - Watermelon Agua Fresca

When you’re recovering from an illness, I’m guessing that you may be on some meds that don’t allow you to drink alcohol, like me. (Bummer!) Instead, try this refreshing and healthy watermelon drink from the eMeals blog. You can substitute liquid stevia for the sugar if you wish. If you have some handy, add some fresh basil or mint from the garden.

I’d also keep the solid watermelon bits to mix into a smoothie. Gotta get your fiber!

Watermelon Agua Fresca

Recipe from eMeals

Ingredients

  • 6 cups cubed seedless watermelon
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Garnish: lime wedges (optional)

Instructions

  1. Using a blender, puree watermelon until smooth.
  2. Strain through a sieve into a pitcher, and discard solids.
  3. Add water, sugar, and lime juice to pitcher, and stir to combine.
  4. Cover and chill for at least one hour before serving.
  5. Garnish each glass with a lime wedge, if desired.

Recipe and photo used with permission.

Summer Berry Pudding Trifle

Summer Berry Pudding Trifle from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Whenever I have a chance, I turn into ABC’s The Chew (weekdays 1e|12p|c) for a little foodie inspiration. It’s one of my favorite cooking shows since it’s informative, fun, and not a cooking competition. (I’m a little burnt out on that type of cooking show.) The cooking by Carla Hall, Mario Batali and Michael Symon is practical, affordable and something just about anyone can make in their kitchen, like Carla’s recipe for Summer Berry Pudding – take a peek below!

Since I wanted to make something special for Fourth of July entertaining, I took Carla’s Summer Berry Pudding and turned it into a trifle so I could include a blue and white layer to match the red one. Due to my food sensitivities, I also made it gluten free, used stevia and coconut palm sugar instead of white cane sugar, and used a non-dairy whipped topping instead of regular whipped cream. The topping I used,  Trader’s Joe’s House Whip, has a tiny bit of milk in it that I can tolerate. If you have to stay away for even small amounts of milk, you may want to skip the whipped topping  altogether. Or you can try making whipped cream from coconut milk.  Another idea for the white layer would be vanilla coconut ice cream or a layer of coconut, vanilla or lemon sorbet.

What I especially like about trifles, aside from the cool presentation, is that if you have a trifle bowl with a lid, it’s very portable (great for parties and picnics!) and it’s easy to store leftovers right in the bowl.

Summer Berry Pudding Trifle from This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Summer Berry Pudding Trifle

Based on Carla Hall's recipe for Summer Berry Pudding

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf of gluten free raisin bread
  • 1 cup low sugar apricot preserves
  • 2 cups raspberries
  • 2 cups blackberries
  • 4 cups blueberries, divided
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons coconut palm sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 2 tablespoons powdered stevia (I like Stevia Extract in the Raw.)
  • 1 (10 ounce) tub non-dairy whipped topping

Directions

  1. Spread the apricot preserves on one side of each of the slices of bread.
  2. Line the trifle bowl with the slices of bread, jam side in. If needed, cut bread into smaller pieces to make a solid wall. Leave a few inches at the top for whipped topping and blueberry layers. Reserve a few slices of the bread to use as the top layer.
  3. Combine the raspberries, blackberries and 2 cups blueberries in a saucepot over medium heat with lemon juice, palm sugar, and stevia. Cook until the berries begin to burst, about 5 minutes, then remove from heat.
  4. Pour the berry mixture into the well in the bread-lined trifle bowl. Cover the top with the reserved slices of the bread.
  5. Place a layer of plastic wrap over the top of the cooked berries and bread layer. Place a few plates on top to weigh it down. Place in refrigerator and chill overnight.
  6. Add a layer of whipped topping. Then carefully add the remaining 2 cups of blueberries.
  7. Spoon trifle into small bowls and serve.
Prep Time: 12 Hours 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 10 Minutes
Total Time: 12 Hours 40 Minutes
Servings: Serves 6 to 8
  • Serving size: 1 bowl

Take a summer time break with The Chew

The Chew

ABC’s The Chew comes on at 1 pm ET, which is why I try to take my lunchtime break when the show’s playing. (I also DVR it!) I’ve been a fan of the show from the very beginning. (Read my review of The Chew from October 2011.) I originally started watching The Chew because I adore Mario Batali and Michael Symon. I soon grew to love the other cast members like Carla Hall because her recipes are so good, Clinton Kelly because of his entertaining ideas, and Daphne Oz since she gives good health and wellness advice. I also enjoy their money saving tips and the banter between the hosts and their guests. I’m sure the cast is also why The Chew is one of my mother-in-law’s favorite shows. We often watch the show together when she visits.

Here’s a recent The Chew episode you can watch FREE on Hulu for a limited time. If you’re growing a garden this summer, The Chew’s “Field of Greens” episode should prove inspirational! Curtis Stone guest co-hosts and whips up a delicious dish straight from the garden. Michael Symon and Clinton Kelly team up for a garden inspired recipe of their own. Also, the show visits the rooftop garden of the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York City, which is fascinating!

I'm always looking for new ways to spice up my Summer dishes, and ABC’s The Chew serves up everything from grilling and outdoor entertaining to road trips and picnics. Watch weekdays 1e|12p|c on ABC to see what celebrity chefs Mario Batali, Michael Symon, and Carla Hall, lifestyle expert Clinton Kelly and fresh face of healthy living Daphne Oz are dishing out to inspire you this Summer.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of ABC’s The Chew. The opinions and text are all mine.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of ABC’s The Chew. The opinions and text are all mine.
 

Gluten-Free Crepes with Chilean Fruit and Orange Vanilla Sauce

Gluten-Free Crepes with Chilean Fruit | At This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.comAs a community leader at Udi’s Gluten Free, I’m always on the lookout for healthy, delicious and easy to make gluten free recipes. That’s why I was excited that the folks at the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association sent me this recipe for gluten free crepes to share with you!

You'll need a crepe pan (an 8" omelet pan should do fine), and if you've never made crepes - some patience! It takes a little bit of practice to get the crepes just right, so expect to feed the first few tries to the dog.

About Chilean fruit

Chile’s fresh stone fruits and berries are now in ample supply in supermarkets throughout North America. If you’re concerned about safety of the produce coming from Chile, know that their fruit growers and exporters are passionate about providing the freshest, highest-quality fruit to consumers. That's why they've invested in state-of-the-art facilities and maintain the highest standards for food safety and quality.

For more delicious recipes from the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association, visit fruitsfromchile.com/recipes. And for more gluten free recipes, check out Udi’s Gluten Free Community.

Gluten-Free Crepes with Chilean Fruit | At This Mama Cooks! On a Diet - thismamacooks.com

Gluten Free Crepes with Chilean Fruit and Orange Sauce

Recipe from the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk or soy, rice or coconut milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons butter or buttery spread (melted)
  • 1 cup gluten free flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon gluten free baking powder
  • 2 cups orange juice
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 3 peaches, sliced in 1/2 inch slices
  • 1 pint strawberries, sliced into quarters (or equivalent mix of blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries)
  • Optional: add whipped cream, yogurt or ice cream if desired.

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk eggs and milk together. Add melted butter. In a small bowl, blend flour, salt, sugar and baking powder and add to liquid mixture, and blend until combined. Refrigerate for one hour.
  2. In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine orange juice and granulated sugar and simmer until mixture is reduced to 1 cup. Remove from heat. Add vanilla, blend, and set aside.
  3. Lightly wipe the surface of a small nonstick skillet with butter or canola oil. Place skillet over medium heat. Pour approximately 1/8 cup of batter into hot skillet, tilting skillet until batter spreads evenly into a thin layer. Cook crepe until lightly brown, about two minutes, then flip with a pancake turner or spatula.
  4. In a small bowl, combine the sliced peaches and berries. Spoon sliced fruits into the center of each crepe. Fold in half. Fold in half again forming triangle, four layers thick. Place two crepes on individual serving dishes and add 1/4 cup of orange vanilla sauce.
Prep Time: 1 Hour 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Total Time: 1 Hour 45 Minutes
Servings: Serves 8
  • Serving size: 2 crepes
  • Calories: 177
  • Total Fat: 5 g
  • Saturated fat: 3 g
  • Unsaturated fat: 2 g
  • Sodium: 209 mg
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 4 g
  • Cholesterol: 63 mg

Recipe and photo used with permission of the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association

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Disclosure: As an Udi's Gluten Free Community Leader I'm compensated for my time and efforts on their behalf.

Ring in the New Year with a healthy Blueberry and Pear Champagne Aperitif

Chilean Fresh Blueberry and Pear Champagne AperitifAre you looking for a healthier way to imbibe on New Year’s Eve? Try this Fresh Blueberry and Pear Champagne Aperitif healthy cocktail recipe from the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association. Not only does this cocktail add a dose of festiveness to your holiday table, it packs a powerful nutritional punch, too, since fresh blueberries from Chile are a superfood. They’re full of healthy antioxidants and other important nutrients that help prevent disease and provide a healthful start to the new year.

You can make this with French Champagne or a sparkling wine. Or try it with a sparkling fruit juice as a mocktail or a New Year’s Day brunch drink. If you’re watching your calories, omit the whipped cream garnish and use stevia or Splenda instead of sugar.

Find more recipes for fresh blueberries and pears from Chile fruitsfromchile.com.

Chilean Fresh Blueberry and Pear Champagne Aperitif

Recipe from the Chilean Fresh Fruit Association

Serves 6-8 cordial glasses

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup fresh Chilean blueberries, washed
  • 2 medium Chilean Bartlett pears, washed, peeled and chopped
  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup of Champagne, sparkling wine or sparkling fruit juice
  • Whip cream (optional)

Directions:

  1. Place first six ingredients in a pot and cover. Simmer for 20 minutes. Puree and strain. Chill.
  2. When ready to serve, stir in 1/2 cup of Champagne into cold fruit mixture and serve in cordial glasses.
  3. Optional: Garnish each glass with a dollop of whip cream and fresh Chilean blueberry.

Nutritional information:

  • 107 calories
  • 1/2 g protein
  • 2 g fiber

Picture and recipe used with permission.