Monthly Archives: April 2014
Hello dear reader, it’s the month of hearts and I know you want to serve something different, something attractive, something exciting to your loved ones. Well you know what? Quinoa may be the best suggestion you will ever have.
Puzzled? You need not be; here are some basic facts about Quinoa and why it is an answer to the question on what hearty meal to serve on Valentine’s Day or any other day…
Quinoa is a healthy food, a leafy plant whose seeds are made into grains, which is packed in nutrients that is good for the body, good for the mind, and good for the heart. It is friendly to vegetarians because it is one of those rare veggies you get protein from. It is rich in fiber, and is a good source of calcium. It is also packed with good carbs and Vitamin E. Talk about getting fit and looking fab during Valentines!
Now let’s get down to business – Quinoa can be served in any meal. I’m talking about not only of dish, but the time of the day as well. Have it in breakfast as a cereal. Serve your lunch with Quinoa soup as appetizer. Delight your guests during dinner with Quinoa on your salad. Or just simply serve Quinoa as substitute to rice. You may also want to try cooking Meatball Spaghetti using Quinoa pasta and serving it with garlic Quinoa bread.
Quinoa comes in different shapes and sizes, as gluten-free flour, in whole grains, as cereal flakes, in thin slices of pasta or as bread. It is also available in a variety of colors and distinct flavors.
White Quinoa, which is the most common, has the softest texture and a buttery flavor – more like rice. Serve it as is, simmered whole grains, in partner with baked oysters or any of your favorite viand. There are lots of recipes for Quinoa, and the white grain variant.
If you are looking for something excellent in cold salads, try the red variation of Quinoa. Because of the color, it will add beauty to the bowl, along with the green vegetables, the translucent onions, the browned garlic and nuts and the white or pinkish salad dressing. Of course, red Quinoa is not only good in salads; be sure to try other recipes for this variety, too.
Of the three, if you want something strong in taste, something more adventurous, a flavor which is reminiscent of caviar, then try serving salted black Quinoa. This will surely surprise your diners and is guaranteed by chefs to be a fine and exquisite dining experience. That’s just some basic trick. Learn more about recipes for Quinoa below.
Be sure to not only be able to serve this healthy tasty treat this Valentines…and you don’t even need to wait for Thanksgiving or Christmas. All you have to do is look up and jot down some recipes, buy Quinoa and cook and serve it every day in your home.
We all know that almonds are commonly eaten raw or toasted but they can also be enjoyed as an addition to desserts, chocolates, sweets and even savory dishes. Yum! They are rich in Vitamin E, dietary fiber, B vitamins and essential minerals. They provide the healthy recipes that your body craves for and needs.
Why don’t you try these perfect snacks that you and your loved ones would enjoy?
Cinnamon Roasted Almonds – super easy to prepare and truly enjoyable. Pack it up for a handy energy booster during the day, or that crunch you want while watching TV or just hanging out.
1 piece egg white (large)
1 teaspoon cold water
4 cups whole almonds
1/2 cup raw sugar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1. Preheat your oven to about 250 degrees Fahrenheit (120 degrees Celsius).
2. Grease your 10×15 inches jelly roll pan or tin pan coated in cooking spray.
3. Beat the egg white lightly then add water. Beat it until frothy. Add the nuts and coat it evenly by tossing.
4. Evenly spread it over the pan and bake for about an hour until golden brown, with occasional stirring. Store in airtight containers after it cooled down. This recipe lasts for a few weeks to months, or depends on who knows where it is hidden. Most people can’t take their hands off it.
Almonds can also be enjoyed over dinners and not just as a snack or dessert. How about these Green Beans with Toasted Almonds for a whole new experience?
Green Beans with Toasted Almonds It only takes you fifteen minutes to make it. Double the servings and you share the enjoyment of eating it with others. Being fit and being social doesn’t sound so bad right?
1 1/2 pounds fresh green beans, trimmed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
A handful Toasted slivered or sliced almonds, for garnish
½ cup mushrooms (optional), diced
1. Boil some water and cook the green beans for about five minutes. Drain the beans and return to the same pan to heat.
2. With oil and butter, toss the beans and season with salt and pepper. Add the mushroom for a more hearty taste.
3. Garnish it with almonds and you are good to go.
Healthy cooking does not need any complex procedures and ingredients you have never heard of. Heck, I even don’t have the patience to cook. But with a little bit of creativity and a fun mindset, you can turn your ordinary food items totally delectable. Almonds just got that much better. Whoop Whoop!
With the abundant amount of recipes available online, it is hard to figure out which ones are best for your diet and exercise plan. Meal planning helps you determine what food you will eat during the day. The advantage to a good meal plan is that it helps you calculate the total amount of calories consumed within the week. The total calories can be used to determine how many pounds of fat you will lose after the week. This also allows you to set a timeline for weight loss and fitness goals.
Breakfast Healthy Recipes
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Eating breakfast allows you to feel full even hours after consuming the meal. Breakfast also energizes you, so you do not feel tired in the afternoon. It keeps you from overeating during lunch, which can lead to that exhausted feeling in the mid-afternoon. Planning a breakfast meal involves making the right choices. Avoid sugary recipes that create sweets and load up on unhealthy carbohydrates in the morning.
Stick to breakfast meals that consist of whole grains, fruits and vegetables. Eggs are good for protein, but avoid too many foods with saturated fats, and speak to a physician if you have any cardiovascular disease. Grains, fiber and fruits and vegetables are filled with the nutrition you need for the day. Do not forget a morning multivitamin. They can provide you with any vitamin content you may miss during your meal planning.
Planning Healthy Lunches
Whether it is for your kids or for yourself, a healthy lunch is a good way to fill up and replenish your energy for the rest of the day. Some people eat at restaurants with fellow coworkers. Eating at restaurants kills your budget, and it is hard to find the right meals that help you meet fitness goals. Pack a lunch instead, and plan each lunch for a lightweight meal. Fruits and vegetables are good lunch time healthy meals. They give you more energy, and don’t give you the “food coma” after you have eaten the meal.
Be Careful with Dinner
Dinner is the one meal where people overindulge. Some people starve throughout the day – avoiding lunch and breakfast – and they find themselves overeating during dinner. This can lead to unintentional weight gain and frustration for people who want to stay fit. Eat a light, healthy dinner and make sure you don’t plan meals while hungry. Some dieters eat the largest meal during the morning and eat the lightest at night. This avoids heavy meals before you go to bed.
Planning meals helps you maintain a healthy body weight, and it also keeps your caloric intake within the plan you set out for your dieting goals. Always provide yourself with enough high-energy meals that keep you motivated during the day, but avoid fatty meals such as red meat, sweets, fried and fast foods. Some recipes can help you plan for healthier meals, and it can save you money in the long run.
Chicken salad recipes are incredibly popular and there are literally hundreds of them but, surprisingly enough, not everybody has tried combining the soft and delicate flavor of chicken with the mouthwatering meatiness and saltiness of bacon. These two ingredients go together amazingly and if you never thought of using poultry and meat together in the same recipe, you are going to love chicken recipe and bacon salad.
There are different ways to make this delicious dish, of course, but one of the nicest ways is to serve the chicken and bacon topping warm and the salad leaves and other salad ingredients chilled. This way, you get contrasting temperatures as well as contrasting flavors and textures.
For a very basic chicken and bacon salad, you could fry some bacon and chicken chunks, and then arrange it on a bed of salad leaves. Optional ingredients include chopped apple, raisings, croutons, cucumber, tomato, olives, and capers. Pretty much any kind of salad dressing is good with a bacon and chicken salad recipe, including garlic mayonnaise, Caesar dressing, vinaigrette, or sweet chili sauce.
If you want to make grilled chicken recipes like chicken salad for a buffet, you can serve the salad on one big platter. For a dinner party, you can give everyone a small plateful of the salad as their appetizer. You can use leftover cooked chicken if you have some, else cook new boneless chicken pieces.
Recipe for Warm Chicken Salad with Bacon and Avocado
This is a very special recipe for chicken and bacon salad and the warm mixture is served on a bed of chicory, avocados, watercress and green onions. The dressing is made with sweet chili sauce and lime juice.
This is such a delicious recipe and if you are a fan of chicken salad recipes, you will love the flavor of this one. It is impressive enough to serve at a formal dinner.
You will need:
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breast fillets
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 2 thickly sliced heads chicory
- 2 peeled, stoned avocados, cut into wedges
- 4 green onions, trimmed and sliced on the diagonal
- 5 strips bacon
- 6 oz French fries for the oven
- 1 1/2 oz watercress
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon water
- 2 1/2 tablespoons sweet chili sauce
How to make it:
Heat the oven to 425 degrees F. Brush half a tablespoon of the chili sauce over both sides of the chicken, season it with salt and pepper and place it on a big baking sheet. Mix the rest of the chili sauce with the lime juice and water to make a dressing.
Dice the fries and scatter them around the chicken on the baking sheet. Add the bacon. Bake for fifteen minutes or until the chicken is cooked and the bacon and potatoes are crispy.
Toss the chicory, green onions, watercress, and avocado in half the dressing and arrange this mixture on a platter. Slice the chicken and scatter it over the salad with the potato and bacon. Spoon over the rest of the dressing and serve warm.
Chicken thighs are often overlooked in recipes because of the popularity of boneless chicken breasts, which are more in demand. However, chicken thighs are juicier and much more flavorful. They are also very economical and if you are on a tight budget, there are lots of chicken thigh recipes you can make, whether you are looking for something international like easy chicken enchiladas or something for the summer like healthy chicken recipes.
You can use boneless chicken thighs in casseroles and stews and pretty much any dish where you would normally use chicken breast. You might like to use some chicken breast and some chicken thigh, for a contrast in flavors and textures.
How to De-Bone a Chicken Thigh
Bone-in chicken is cheaper than ones are which have been de-boned for you, so it is well worth learning how to take the bones out of your own. Taking the bone out of a chicken thigh is simple and it also means the chicken will have a shorter cooking time. If you are cutting up a whole chicken, you will need a sharp knife to slice through the joint where the drumstick meets the thigh. You will find the cartilage very soft so it is easy to cut.
Bone the drumstick using the same method as you used for the thigh. Cut along the top of the bone and slice deeply until the knife is touching the bone. You will be able to see the white bone in the cut you have made. Pull the bone upwards and away from the chicken thigh.
Cut into the chicken some more, so that you can remove the bone altogether. You will probably have to slice some more of the meat off the bone so you can get it out. Keep slicing away bits of sinew, tendons and skin until you have a boneless thigh.
ecipe for Crockpot Chicken Thighs in an Herby Orange Sauce
This is such a simple chicken recipe and the fact that you can use a slow cooker means that you can leave this recipe to cook by itself all day while you are out. Serve this tangy citrus chicken dish with noodles or rice and perhaps some broccoli or beans on the side. This recipe serves four people.
You will need:
- 2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs, in 1 inch pieces
- Juice from 1 orange
- Zest from 2 oranges
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed dried thyme leaves
- 1/2 teaspoon crumbled dried rosemary
- 4 slices crumbled, cooked lean bacon
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons white sugar
- 2 crushed garlic cloves
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 3 peeled, diced carrots
- 1 chopped onion
- 14 1/2 oz can diced peeled tomatoes
- 6 oz can tomato paste
How to make it:
Remove any visible fat from the chicken, then combine it with the orange juice and half the zest, tomatoes and their liquid, oregano, thyme, pepper, garlic, rosemary, onion, carrot, basil and tomato paste in a three and a half quart crockpot. Cover and cook on “low” for about six hours or until the chicken thighs are cooked through. Stir in the rest of the orange zest, the lemon juice, and sugar. Sprinkle the crumbled bacon over the finished dish.
Picnics are a lot of fun and eating outdoors on a nice day is a relaxing way to pass a few hours. There are lots of different kinds of picnic recipes you can make, including desserts, snacks and beverages. One of the most popular ingredients for making tasty picnic recipes is chicken. You will need to cook the chicken at home and then cool it, use it in a chicken recipe and transport it to the picnic in a cool-box.
If you are going to eat the chicken within an hour, you could double wrap it in aluminum foil and eat it warm but do not do this if the weather is very hot or if you are not sure how long it will be before you eat.
Chicken wings are nice for picnics but do not forget to take some wet wipes if you are going to serve these because they can be sticky. You can coat chicken wings in your favorite spice mixture and bake them until they are cooked through.
Chicken Salad Recipes
What about cooking some chicken breasts and making a tasty chicken salad with them? Chop the cooked chicken and mix it with bacon, lettuce leaves, cherry tomatoes, walnuts, cubes of cheese and anything else you like. Take some salad dressing in a separate container and pour it over the salad before serving.
Another idea is to make a mixed salad and serve some chilled chicken wings or chicken drumsticks separately. Chicken salad is very popular and it is a great picnic idea. You might even have some cooked chicken in the refrigerator which is ideal for a last minute picnic because it will already be well chilled.
Recipe for Crunchy Coated Baked Chicken
This recipe makes eight servings of baked chicken. The combination of herbs and spices is very flavorful and you can cool this chicken in the refrigerator then serve it at a picnic. The easiest way to grind up the corn flakes is by putting them in a plastic bag and hitting them with a rolling pin. You could also grind them up in a food processor.
You will need:
- 8 chicken legs
- 1 cup ground corn flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 8 fresh basil leaves
- 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- Zest from a lemon
How to make it:
Combine the soy sauce and balsamic vinegar and pour it over the chicken. Leave in the refrigerator for two hours to marinate. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a shallow baking tray. Sprinkle the lemon zest, herbs and spices over the chicken and put a leaf of basil on each leg.
Coat the chicken in the ground corn flakes and arrange on the baking tray. Cook for about half an hour on each side or until golden brown and cooked through. Eat the chicken hot or let it cool and refrigerate it until required.