HEALTHY HOT ARTICHOKE DIP
Prep time: 10 minutes. Cooking time: 30 minutes. Serves: 4 – 8
2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided
1 cup plain, non-fat Greek yogurt
1 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, divided
1 (4 oz) can mild green chilies, drained and chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
¼ tsp Tabasco
¼ tsp black pepper
1 (15 oz) can artichokes, drained and chopped
1 (10 oz) chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry
¼ cup pine nuts (optional)
Garnish: Toasted or baked pita bread pieces
Preheat oven to 350ºF. In a large bowl mix together 1 cup mozzarella cheese, yogurt and ¼ cup Parmesan, along with chilies, garlic, Tabasco, pepper, artichokes and spinach. Spoon mixture into a 1-1/2 quart baking dish; sprinkle with remaining cup of mozzarella and ¾ cup Parmesan cheese, parsley and pine nuts. Bake until warm, bubbly and brown (about 30 minutes). Serve with pita bread pieces
Note: You can assemble this up to two days ahead, and bake just before serving.
ROSEMARY CHICKEN WITH ARUGULA, RED ONIONS, AND WHITE BEANS
Prep time: 15 minutes. Marinating time: 30 minutes. Cooking time: 15 minutes. Serves: 4
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
5 tbsp olive oil
Kosher salt & black pepper, to taste
3 tsp Dijon mustard
4 – 6 oz boneless, skinless, chicken breasts
1 (15.5) can cannellini beans, rinsed
4 cups baby arugula
¼ small red onion, thinly sliced
In a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, whisk together the vinegar, rosemary, garlic, 2 Tbsp of the oil, ½ tsp salt and ½ tsp pepper. Add the chicken and turn to coat; refrigerate, covered, for 30 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the mustard, 2 Tbsp of the remaining oil and some salt and pepper. Add the beans, arugula, and onion; toss to combine.
Heat the remaining oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade (discard the marinade) and cook until cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes each side. Serve the chicken with the arugula, onions, and beans.
BAKED PEARS WITH BLUE CHEESE, WALNUTS, & HONEY
Prep time: 15 minutes. Baking time: 30 minutes. Serves: 4
2 Bartlett or Anjou pears (ripe but firm), halved and cored
Extra virgin olive oil (EVOO) for drizzling
Cinnamon or cardamom, to taste
3 tbsp. good quality blue cheese, crumbled
3 tbsp. walnuts, toasted and chopped
Local honey, for drizzling
Heat the oven to 375ºF. On a lined baking sheet, lay the pear halves cut-side up. Drizzle with EVOO and sprinkle lightly with cinnamon or cardamom. Bake the pears for about 20 minutes. Remove pears from oven and fill each half with blue cheese. Return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Remove the pears from the oven and let sit for about 3 minutes. Add chopped walnuts on top and drizzle with honey. Serve one half to each guest.
Note: Toast the walnuts beforehand in the oven for about 5 minutes, or on a stove top in a dry pan over medium heat for about 5 minutes.
Hint: Use pecans instead of walnuts.
Hint: Make this an appetizer by omitting the honey and serving it on top of arugula with a balsamic dressing.