Spring is in full swing. If you started your new year with eating healthy and your goal was weight management, you are on the right track. Making better choices of what you eat is a great way to improve your lifestyle and give you more energy.
Choose lighter cooking techniques—“better for you” does not have to mean bland and boring. Roasted meals are a good way to make a better choice and a one-dish meal. Grilled foods need only a small amount of added fat, if any. Foil-pack steaming is another alternative.
Beans are a very good for you. Not only are they high in protein, fiber, calcium, potassium and iron, but beans are said to lower cholesterol, protect against ulcers and reduce the risk of cancer. They are easy to prepare and inexpensive. There are many different varieties—lentils, black beans, navy beans, split peas, garbanzos, and more.
Honey-Dijon Pork Chops with Roasted Potatoes, Carrots and Broccoli
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Soaking time: 30 minutes, longer or overnight
Cooking time: 40 minutes
1 lb potatoes, cut into 1-inch chunks
(soak in ice water for at least 30 minutes, the longer the better)*
Olive oil spray
4 Pork Chops (3/4 inch thick)
4 heaped tsp. of Grey Poupon Dijon mustard
2 cups baby carrots
4 cups of broccoli florets
1 Tblsp. Mediterranean Spiced Sea Salt**
White wine or water
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Heat frying pan (I like to use cast iron). Spray with olive oil. Pat moisture off pork chops and place in pan and sear on each side (about 2 minutes) until browned. Remove from pan and place in large shallow baking dish, sprayed with a little olive oil. Dry off potatoes and place around pork chops, along with carrots and broccoli.
Spread chops with mustard. Spray chops, carrots and broccoli with oil and sprinkle vegetables with Mediterranean Spiced Sea Salt. After 15 minutes, add a little white wine or water to the pan to ensure that chops do not dry out. Bake for another 15 minutes. Check that chops are cooked to your liking.
* Soaking cut, sliced, or diced potatoes in iced water, for at least 30 minutes or better still, overnight, makes the best French fries or roast potatoes.
**Mediterranean Spiced Sea Salt is by McCormick and found in most grocery stores.
LEMON PEPPER GRILLED CHICKEN
Preparation time: 15 minutes
Marinating time: 3 hours or more
Cooking time: 15 minutes
1/4 cup lemon pepper
1 Tblsp. dry mustard
1 Tblsp dried rosemary
5 boneless, skinless, chicken breast halves
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
3 cups dry white wine
In a small bowl mix lemon pepper, mustard, and rosemary. Place chicken breast halves in a medium bowl. Rub with garlic and sprinkle with lemon pepper mixture. Pour in lemon juice and dry white wine. Cover and refrigerate at least three hours before grilling.
Preheat outdoor grill for high heat. Lightly oil grate. Cook chicken breasts until meat is no longer pink and juices run clear, about 15 minutes.
APPLE PEACH RASPBERRY CRISP
Preparation time: 30 minutes
Cooking time: 50 minutes
4 cups peeled, sliced apples
2 cups peeled, sliced peaches
1 cup + 1 cup unsweetened frozen raspberries, thawed
2 Tblsp +2 Tblsp. fructose
2 Tblsp. flour
1 tsp. allspice
1 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp, cinnamon
Vegetable cooking spray
Preheat oven to 350ºF. In two pie plates or an 8×12-inch baking pan combine sliced apples, peaches, and raspberries. In a small bowl, combine fructose, flour, allspice; add to fruit. Toss to mix. Spread over fruit. Bake for about 50 minutes, until apples are cooked and topping is browned.