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Posts tagged ‘money saving’

Recipe of the Week: Make-Ahead Mini Frittatas

I admit, I’m not a meal-prep-for-the-entire-week-on-Sunday type of person. But, I do like to cook a few dinners ahead of time when I can. This week I mixed up my meal prep by making these simple, versatile, frittatas to help up my breakfast game. Some mornings I have time for a quick breakfast, and the other days lunchboxes are zipped into backpacks as we’re walking out the door. These frittatas add satisfying protein and a few extra veggies into my morning to help keep me full until lunch. One of my favorite parts about this recipe is the endless number of flavor combinations!

Make-Ahead Mini Frittatas (makes 9 frittatas)

Ingredients

6 large eggs

1/3 cup milk (or non-dairy milk)

2/3 cup grated cheese (I used cheddar)

3/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon pepper

1 cup of your preferred combo of fillings (spinach, broccoli, bell peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, scallions)

Fresh herbs that complement your vegetable flavors – chives, basil, parsley, cilantro, etc.

 

Preparation

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Spray muffin tin with cooking spray

3. Whisk together the eggs, milk, cheese, salt and pepper in a large bowl.

4. Divide vegetables and herbs equally among the muffin tins and pour in the egg mixture. Do not fill all the way to the top as the frittatas will rise during cooking.

5. Bake for 25 minutes or until set. Let cool for a few minutes in the pan and then remove to a wire rack.

The frittatas will keep up to three days in the fridge and can also be frozen up to 1 month. To reheat, wrap in a paper towel and microwave for 30-60 seconds.

To make a vegan version use a non-dairy milk and omit the cheese.

Recipe of the Week: Roast Chicken

Photo credit to Herman Saksono on Flicker

It’s a simple classic, and an easy one to add to your repertoire.  Whether you’re cooking for yourself, your family or an extended group, this dish is a perfect dress-up/dress-down entree.  I used the recipe from The Barefoot Contessa Cookbook.  If you don’t have it at home, here is the basic idea:

1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees

2. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry

3. Sprinkle the cavity with salt and pepper, and stuff with your favorite herbs and slices of lemon

4. Brush the outside of the chicken with olive oil or butter and sprinkle with salt, pepper and additional herbs to taste

5. Place in a roasting pan in the oven for 1 hr and 15 minutes to 1 1/2 hours. Test the temperature of the thigh after 1 hour and 15 minutes – if it’s not 165 degrees leave it in a little while longer.

Let the chicken rest for approximately 15 minutes before cutting and serve with your favorite side dishes.  The best part about cooking an entire chicken is that the bones can be used for stock and there will usually be enough meat left for meals later in the week.  Here are a few ideas:

1. Chicken Quesadillas – Combine chicken, reduced fat monterey jack cheese, sauteed shallots and fresh cilantro on a whole wheat tortilla. Eat with salsa and/or lightly mashed avocado with lime juice.

2. Asian Lettuce Wraps – Combine shredded chicken, carrot strips, chopped cucumber and mango, and grated fresh ginger to taste. Mix with a small amount of plum sauce or citrus vinaigrette and wrap in Boston lettuce leaves.

3. Chicken and Vegetable Soup – Chop the chicken and heat with chicken stock, onions, carrots, celery, corn, turnips, a bay leaf and herbs and spices to taste. Simmer for an hour.

What’s your favorite chicken recipe?

Weekend reading

Frankenfish?

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A new way to help feed a growing population and/or save endangered wild salmon species, or just gross?  Soon, you may be able to decide with your spending dollars. AquaBounty Technologies has genetically engineered a salmon that reaches mature size in 18 months, as opposed to 3-4 years, and it may be on your dinner plate in the next two years.  Without. Your. Knowledge. The FDA recently completed hearings about the safety of the fish, the first genetically modified (GM) animal for human consumption, which concludes a 15 year approval process.  The FDA still hasn’t decided whether or not the fish will have to be labeled as GM.  Some commercial crops such as soybean and corn are already genetically modified, but opponents wonder if new food allergies will develop after eating the fish, and whether or not fish will escape the breeding pens and mate with wild fish. The company claims it will only create sterile females, but can they be 100% sure?

An Apple a Day…

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You’ve known the rest of this rhyme since childhood.  Obesity is recognized as one of the major health problems in the US, and more and more health professionals are recognizing the inherent relationship between food and health.  A 1980’s study by the National Academy of Sciences suggested a minimum of 25 hours of nutrition instruction in medical school, but today it is difficult for some schools to even meet that amount. To help rectify the situation, a few medical schools are offering additional nutrition classes, while at other schools students are taking a knife and food into their own hands to learn how to cook.  In Massachusetts and Maine doctors are beginning to write “prescriptions” for fruits and vegetables. These prescriptions are given to at-risk families and can be filled at the local farmers market.

A Registered Dietitian (RD) is a health professional that is focused on the relationship between food and health and helping you meet your goals. It’s easy to find one in your area. Simply log on to EatRight.org, click on “Find a Registered Dietitian” and enter your zip code.  Preventative care is key to living your best life!

Too Much Food?

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This Gizmodo post talks about 10 ways to save excess food.  From dehydrating vegetables to donating fruit from your backyard tree, there is more than one innovative way to deal with abundance.

Pack it to go

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If you’re looking for a new packaging option for your lunch, Fresh Snack Pack reusable bags may be your answer. These packs come in two sizes – sandwich and snack.  They’re also perfect if you’re eating outside because they unfold twice so that they can be used as a “plate” for your food.  These packs are eco-friendly, washable, reusable and budget friendly – the perfect addition to any on-the-go meal!

Try these sandwiches and snacks in your packs:

  • Sliced chicken or turkey with reduced-fat havarti cheese, tomatoes, watercress and honey mustard on multigrain bread
  • Hummus with sliced cucumber and tomatoes, shredded carrots, diced red pepper and parsley in a whole wheat pita
  • Mixed berries and granola to top your yogurt or to eat alone
  • Reduced-fat cheese with whole wheat crackers and sliced apples or pears

Stone Cold Veggies

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The next time you’re looking for a quick way to make your meal more nutritious without spending too much time in the kitchen, head to the freezer section of your grocery store.  Frozen veggies are picked and flash frozen at the peak of ripeness, so they have an equal or greater amount of nutrients than fresh veggies.  You’ll also save money by not throwing away spoiled vegetables.  Get creative and use them with pasta, soup, salad or alone as a side dish!