Friday, December 31, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR

HISTORY OF WATCH NIGHT

( New Year's Eve)

Many of you who live or grew up in Black communities in the United States have probably heard of "Watch Night Services," the gathering of the faithful in churches on New Year's Eve. The service usually begins anywhere from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. and ends at midnight with the entrance of the New Year. Some folks come to Church first, before going out to celebrate. For others, church is the only New Year's Eve event. Like many others, I always assumed Watch Night was a fairly standard Christian religious celebration, but my grandmother said no there more to story, enjoy the whole story of watch night as told by my grandmother.

December 31, 1862, also known as "Freedom's Eve." On that night, Blacks came together in churches and private homes all across the nation, anxiously awaiting news that the Emancipation Proclamation actually had become law. Then, at the stroke of midnight, it was January 1, 1863, and all slaves in the Confederate States were declared legally free. When the news was received, there were praying and shouting and songs of joy as people fell to their knees and thanked God. Black folks
have gathered in churches annually on New Year's Eve ever since praising God for bringing us safely through another year. It's been 141 years since that first freedom's eve and many of us were never taught the African American history of watch night, but tradition still brings us together at this time every year to Celebrate "HOW WE GOT OVER".

KWANZAA RECIPE DAY-6



6th Kwanzaa Principle: Kuumba or Creativity
Health Principle: Use imagination to keep diet and exercise routines interesting







Okra, Corn and Tomatoes

Ingredients

4 slices bacon, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 (10 ounce) packages frozen cut okra
1 (14.5 ounce)cans diced tomatoes
1(20 ounce) packages frozen corn
2 tablespoons Creole seasoning
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 - 1 tsp Cayenne pepper(depending on your heat tolerance).

Place bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Cook and stir to release some of the juices, and then add the onion and okra. Fry until tender and browned, stirring constantly. Add a little vinegar or squeeze of lemon can be used to brighten the taste and reduce the sliminess.Be careful, as this tends to brown quickly. Pour in the tomatoes, and simmer over medium heat for 20 minutes. Mix in the corn, and simmer for another 10 minutes. Season with Creole seasoning, salt and pepper, and serve.


To make this a one pot meal, add 1/2 pound of cook chicken and ½ pound of kielbasa sausages use a little sprayed in a pan, cook the smoked sausage until it’s a bit blackened on both sides and add with the corn. You can also try 1 pound of clean and deveined raw shrimp add with the corn. Its great serviced over white rice.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

KWANZAA RECIPE DAY-5




5th Kwanzaa Principle: Nia or Purpose
Health Principle: Good health is not accidental. Make health your purposeful objective every day.

In 1880s and 1890s immigrant laborers brought cabbage to America. The term cabbage is a derived from the French word "caboche" (head). During slavery, children that weren’t big enough to work were fed at the Master house. They got milk and mush for breakfast and bread and pot liquor (the liquid remaining after cabbage was cooked).


Fried Cabbage Greens

INGREDIENTS
6 slices of bacon*, cut into thirds
1 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 teaspoon ground black pepper, or to taste
1 head cabbage, cored and sliced
1 white onion, sliced
1 pinch white sugar

DIRECTIONS
Place the bacon into a large pot over medium heat.
Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes
or until bacon is crisp. Add cabbage, onion, and sugar to
the pot; cook and stir continuously for 15 minutes, until
tender.
*Use 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil (health choice)
Tip:
If you like your bacon a crisp, remove it before you add the cabbage, add the bacon when it ready to service.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

KWANZAA RECIPE DAY-4

4th Kwanzaa Principle: Ujamaa or Cooperative Economics
Health Principle: Buy food from local farmer’s markets and co–ops. Food will be fresher and you’ll be supporting businesses in your community.

The first group of Africans slaves landed in Jamestown Virginia, they brought food over to America including seeds of there native crops and introduced several plants and black-eyed peas was one of the seeds. Black-eyed are healthy and slaves ate them to become strong. One of the more popular ways of cooking black-eyed peas is the dish called Hoppin John", a traditional African-American dish served on New Year's day for good luck.

BLACK EYED PEAS
(Hoppin John)

Ingredients:
1 pound black-eyed peas or 2 package of frozen
4 cups water
1 medium onion
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 or 4 smoked necks bones* or smoked turkey parts
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 cup margarine
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper (optional)
3 cups of cooked rice

Preparation:
Thoroughly pick and wash the black-eyes peas in strainer picking out small pebbles. Place peas in pot and add water covering the peas, place in refrigerator for 24 hours. (If frozen eliminate this step)

*Clean smoked neck bones (there is a brain stem that runs down the neck of the pig), When the bones are chopped, the stern can be found in the channel-like opening, remove it.
Boil the bones or turkey parts until they are ½ way tender using enough water to cover, through the boiling period maintain this level of water,use the pot liquor add with water to make 4 cups, Add Black Eye Peas Combine with salt, pepper, onion, water, and pork or other meat, you can add crushed red pepper if you like spicy food. Bring to rapid boil, cover and reduce heat simmer for 1½ to 2 hours or until tender.
Serves 4 to 6

Tips:
If you're up to the challenge, you might try adding the rice to the black-eyed pea mixture.
If not, I suggests, "cheat" at serving time placed the black-eyed peas on top of the rice on your plate this works for me.
The challenge: After the peas are tender, Add the rice, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer, covered, until the liquid has been absorbed, about 10 to 15 minutes. Mix well, and serve immediately.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

KWANZAA RECIPE DAY-3


3rd Kwanzaa Principle: Ujima or Collective Work and Responsibility
Health Principle: Make collective partnerships of family members, your health care team and friends to realize your healthy living goals.



Chicken Yassa
services 4-6

Ingredients
• 1 4-6 lb. Chicken
• 3 Medium Onions (Vidalia or other, thinly sliced)
• 1/4 C. Parsley (chopped)
• 1 t. Freshly Ground Pepper
• 1 t. Coarse Salt
• 1 Bay Leaf (crumbled)
• 1/4 t. Thyme
• 1/2 t. Crushed Red Pepper (Optional)
• 1/3 C Lemon Juice
• 1/4 C Oil
• 11/2C Water

Marinate at least 30 minutes, longer or even overnight is ideal.
Preparation
1. Cut the chicken in half or in pieces and spread out on a baking pan
2. Put giblets in water and simmer (for sauce for chicken and onions) (need 1 C. of stock)
3. Cover with the onions, parsley, salt, pepper, bay leaves, thyme and red pepper
4. Pour lemon juice and salad oil over the chicken and onions
5. Marinate for at least 30 minutes
6. After marinating remove the chicken and broil until chicken is browned on all sides
7. Simmer the onion mixture over medium heat stirring occasionally to prevent onions from browning (approx. 5 minutes)
8. Return chicken to baking pan and cover with the onion mixture
9. Pour 1 cup chicken stock (including giblets) over the chicken and onions
10. Make white rice
11. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes until onions turn a light golden color.
12. Serve over rice

Monday, December 27, 2010

The Symbols of Kwanzea

The Symbols of Kwanzaa
Kwanzaa has seven basic symbols and two supplemental ones. Each represents values and concepts reflective of African culture and contributive to community building and reinforcement. The basic symbols in Swahili and then in English are:
Mazao (The Crops)
These are symbolic of African harvest celebrations and of the rewards of productive and collective labor.

Mkeka (The Mat)
This is symbolic of our tradition and history and therefore, the foundation on which we build.

Kinara (The Candle Holder)
This is symbolic of our roots, our parent people -- continental Africans.

Muhindi (The Corn)
This is symbolic of our children and our future which they embody.

Mishumaa Saba (The Seven Candles)
These are symbolic of the Nguzo Saba, the Seven Principles, the matrix and minimum set of values which African people are urged to live by in order to rescue and reconstruct their lives in their own image and according to their own needs.

Kikombe cha Umoja (The Unity Cup)
This is symbolic of the foundational principle and practice of unity which makes all else possible.

Zawadi (The Gifts)
These are symbolic of the labor and love of parents and the commitments made and kept by the children.

The two supplemental symbols are:

Bendera (The Flag)
The colors of the Kwanzaa flag are the colors of the Organization Us, black, red and green; black for the people, red for their struggle, and green for the future and hope that comes from their struggle. It is based on the colors given by the Hon. Marcus Garvey as national colors for African people throughout the world.

Nguzo Saba Poster (Poster of The Seven Principles)

KWANZAA PRINCIPLE DAY-2

2nd Kwanzaa Principle: Kujichagulia or Self–Determination
Health Principle: It’s within your power to determine what your future health will be. Act on it.
My goals for 2011 –
Continual working toward a Health body, exercise 15-30 minutes 4-5 days
week, walking 3-4 days a week, eating healthy and losing 40 pounds.
Continual working toward my goal of visiting all 50 states, need to visit 3
states this year.
Craft atleast15 minutes everyday and use something new, or
different and just play around with a new or never used product once a week.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

KWANZAA PRINCIPLE DAY-1


Health Principle: Recognize the unity of your body, mind and spirit.



OXTAIL STEW

INGREDIENTS
1 cup chopped celery
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
2 cubes beef bouillon
10 cups water
6 whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup oil
3 pounds beef oxtail
1 large onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup cornstarch dissolved in ½ cup water


DIRECTIONS
1. Place celery, garlic, tomato paste, bouillon cubes, and water into a large Dutch oven; stir until the tomato paste has dissolved. Add peppercorns and bay leaves, place over medium heat and bring to a simmer.
2. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oxtail and cook until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove oxtail from hot oil and place into Dutch oven. Pour out all but 1 tablespoon of oil from the skillet, reduce heat to medium, and cook the onion until softened and translucent, about 5 minutes; add to oxtail.
3. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 2 1/2 hours. Season with salt and pepper, recover, and continue to cook until the oxtail is tender, but not falling off of the bone, about 30 minutes.
4. Remove oxtail pieces and place into a serving dish. Dutch oven and return to a simmer. Thicken with cornstarch dissolved in water, simmer for 1 minute until thickened and clear. Pour sauce over the oxtail.

Note
Oxtail should be ready when a knife slices easily through the meat. It should not be overcooked otherwise it will fall off the bones and go stringy - and if not cooked long enough it will not come off the bones easily enough. I normally find 4 hours cooking is just perfect.

Kwanzaa Principles our Healthy

Forty years ago, Dr. Ron Karenga, a civil rights activist and college professor, created Kwanzaa to introduce seven values common among most African societies to African Americans and the world. When activated, these important values can strengthen family, community and culture among Black men, women, children and family community groups of all kinds. Kwanzaa is a not a religious observation, but can certainly be viewed as a celebration of spirituality. Kwanzaa is not an alternative to Christmas, but because it is observed as Christmas ends, it provides opportunity for seven days of festivity for family and friends. Kwanzaa invites participants to meditate on and interpret its values in ways that are relevant to our individual and collective goals. Kwanzaa can be well applied as healthy living principles. With African Americans at the forefront of every lethal disease type, the principles of Kwanzaa offer new ways to think about how we can heal ourselves through positive and culturally relevant action steps. During this holiday season and throughout the coming year, we challenge you to put the principles of Kwanzaa to work with the goal of increasing the physical, mental and spiritual health of African Americans everywhere.This year I will share one of the principles of Kwanza each day and a recipe.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Monday, December 20, 2010




CHRISTMAS COUNT DOWN 5 DAYS OF QUICKIE RECIPES
Day 1 Quickie Recipes
Crockpot Red Beans and Rice with Sausage

Ingredients:
2 cups dried red beans
1/2 teaspoon dried minced garlic
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 ham hock
1 pound Andouille or Kielbasa sausage, thinly sliced
*2 teaspoon salt
3 cups hot cooked long-grain rice

Direction:
1. Pick over the dried beans, and soak them in water overnight.
2.The next day, drain off the soaking water, and place the beans
in a crockpot. Cover with water, and stir in first 8 ingredients.
Push the ham hock down into the beans cover with lid and cook
on high heat for 5 hours.
3. Discard bay leaf stir in sausage and *salt and season to taste. Simmer for 20
minutes and serve over rice.
* add only after the beans or fully cooked.

Friday, December 10, 2010

COLLARD GREENS - DAY 10



Ingredients
1 1/2 pound smoked meat (ham hocks, smoked neck bones) or smoked turkey wings (that what I use these day cut back on the old pork)
6 bunches collard greens - rinsed, trimmed and chopped (4 bags of *pre-washed greens
2-3 cups water (just to cover the meat)
5 cups chicken stock or (low sodium chicken stock in the can or cartons)
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1 onion coarsely chopped
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper, or to taste

Preparation:
In an extra large pot, bring ham hocks and water to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, covered, for 1 hour.

Immerse greens in a sink full of water and wash well to remove sand and grit. Lift out, drain water, fill sink, and repeat the procedure approximately 3 or 4 times to ensure they are clean and free of sand, grit and insects. Cut out the thickest part of stems that runs down the center and coarsely chop the greens.

Increase the heat under the hocks to medium-high; add about 1/3 of the greens to the pot. Cover, and cook for about 5 minutes, until wilted. Add remaining greens in two more batches, until all the greens fit into the pot.

Stir in the broth, garlic, vinegar, sugar, black pepper, and red pepper flakes; bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally about 2 hour or until the greens are tender. When done taste and adjust **seasoning.

Remove ham hocks and cut meat from bones. Dice and add back to the greens. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a serving bowl. If desired, pass the juices (also known as pot liquor) for dipping cornbread.

*wash your pre-washed greens just one time (yes they need to be wash).
** If it need a little salt, this is the time to add the salt.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

GRANDMA'S OLD-FASHION POUND CAKE

Day 9

The pound cake, most known as a rich cake, originally contained a pound of each of the main ingredients, including flour, sugar, and butter. That’s where the pound cake gets its name.
When I was a young girl, my grandmother didn't have a mixer she would beat this cake by hand and folded the dry ingredients in a little at a time before baking. She said it needed 300 strokes so we used to count as she mixed. She would bake it during the week for Sunday dinner, also she would bake one for my dad's Friday Fish Fry.


1,2,3,4 POUND CAKE


Ingredients:

1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
2 cups sugar
3 cups flour sifted (to day we use Swans Down Cake Flour)
4 eggs
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Glaze:
1 cup confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon bourbon
1 teaspoon orange zest, grated
1 - 2 tablespoons orange juice concentrate, thawed


Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Sift flour with baking powder and salt. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat on medium speed 10 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add flour mixture alternately with milk and flavorings, creaming by hand until smooth after each addition. Spread batter into prepared 10-inch bundt pan. Bake until tester inserted into cake comes out clean, about 1 hour and 25 minutes. Cool in pan 15 minutes. Remove from pan; cool on rack.
Glaze with OLD-FASHIONED BOURBON GLAZE: Combine sugar, bourbon, zest and enough orange juice to make a thin glaze. Drizzle onto cake.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


Here is my favorite recipe for potato salad. I vary
this recipe from time to time based upon my mood and what I have in the refrigerator. I encourage you to do the same.



Potato Salad


Ingredients:

10 - 12 whole russet potatoes
4 to 6 hard boiled eggs chopped
1 bunch green onions chopped
½ bunch celery chopped
¼ cup pickle relish
1 1/2 cup Mayonnaise
1/3 cup yellow mustard
2 teaspoon onion powder
Salt and pepper to tasted
paprika

Preparation:

1. Boil potatoes with skin on for 30 - 45 minutes. When fork can be easily inserted. Potatoes are done.
2. Pour hot water out and run cold water over potatoes to cool them off for 5 minutes.
3. When potatoes are cool, peel off skin and cut into bite sized pieces. If you overcook them, they don't really hurt
the recipe since the extra potatoes just mixes in with
the creamy portion of the mixture.
4. Stir all ingredients gently except for the paprika.
After all ingredients are well mixed, pour into a bowl.
Add the paprika across the top.
5. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve
serve 16-20

Try 1/2 cup of slice black olives or 1/4 cup of sheered carrots or 1/2 cup of chopped green or red bell pepper or dell pickles chopped in place of sweet relish.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

FOOD ADVENT CALENDAR

I wanted to create a countdown to Christmas in a creative crafty way, I decided to create a homemade Advent Calendar filled with 24 recipes that are quick, easy and fast to prepare, along with a few of my family favorite Holiday goodies.
I will make my Advent Calendar based on Bean's Creation, I will just add recipes to mine. If you would like to make one check it out
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1re9RvVHIA&feature=related

IT'S DECEMBER, CHRISTMAS DINNER TIME

WOW!!!! It's December already, time to pull out the family recipes. Okay let's get down to business and start cooking up some goodies. Get ready I will blog 24 recipes in the next 20 days.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

HAPPY THANKSGIVING

Everyone have a great Thanksgiving Dinner and be thankful because this is the day that the LORD has made.
I am thankful for my family, my health, my friends, a roof over my head and to be surrounded by my love ones during this Holiday Season.

STUFFING VS DRESSING

I like to know what your family call it. It's always dressing in my family whether it's cooked in or out of the bird. Some say that a lots of working class people (African American) have the tendency to say dressing but whatever you call it, it's my favorite part of the meal. Let's hear what your family call it, this should be fun I will give a gift to one lucky person just for commenting a gift.I will have one of my grand baby pick a name at 6:00 pm East Coast time on BLACK FRIDAY and post your name, all you have to do is sent me your information and I will sent it out.
Give my cornbread dressing a try you will just love it.

CORNBREAD GIBLET DRESSING


Ingredients:
3/4 pound Chicken Giblets, *cooked and chopped
1 (9 x 13) **cornbread, already baked
3 stalks celery, finely chopped
1 cup onion, chopped
3/4 cup bell pepper chopped
1/4 c. butter
1/4 tsp. poultry seasoning
1 or 11/2 tbsp. sage, to taste
Salt, and pepper to taste
2-4 cups giblet juice


Directions
Saute onion, celery and bell pepper in the butter until done but not brown,
Crumble cornbread in a large bowl. Add celery,onions, bell pepper, giblets and
poultry seasoning. Add giblet juice gradually. In between adding giblet juice, add sage and salt and pepper to taste, continue adding juice until cornbread is very moist. Bake in a 9 x 13 pan at 375 degrees until top is golden brown. This recipe can be stuff into bird.

*Boil the Chicken giblet (gizzards) in a saucepan on high heat with about a quart of water, add one celery stalk cut up, one medium onion cut up, one teaspoon salt. Reduce heat to low; cover and simmer for 1 to 2 hours or until tender. Discard celery and onion, and coarsely chop giblets. Reserve 4 cups of liquid.

**If you use a corn bread mix, don't use Jeffy or any mix that has sugar and add an extra egg to your corn bread mix.

Sweet Potato Pie

Give this a try you will love them, Keon this is for you.


Sweet Potato Pie
Ingredients:
3 - Frozen Unbaked 8” Or 9” Single Crust Pie Shells
4 - Pounds Uncooked And Unpeeled Sweet Potatoes
1/2 - Cup (1 Stick) Butter
2 - Cups Sugar
3 - Large Eggs
2 - Cups *Evaporated Milk or Whole Milk
1 - Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
1/4 - Teaspoon Salt
1/2 - Teaspoon cinnamon

Preparation:
Boil the potatoes until tender. When you stick a
fork in them it should go in easy but you don't
want them to fall apart. Let the potatoes cool and then peel them.
Blend your sweet potatoes in a large mixing bowl with a blender to remove strings,
repeat this three our four until you have remove just about all the strings
Next cream the softened butter with sugars. Add to the blended sweet potatoes
and continue to mix while adding the eggs one at a time. Finally, add your milk,
vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt and mix thoroughly.
Finally, pour mixture evenly into your three frozen unbaked pie shells. Bake for
1 hour and 30 minutes at 350 degrees on your center oven rake.

Tip:
*I use Carnation Evaporated Milk

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

COOKING CHALLENGE 2010

I just join a cooking challenge with my friends over at Creative scrapbooking Divas. This challenge is the prefect time for me because I prepare all my favorite recipes for the up coming Holiday Season.
The purpose of this challenge for a layout or mini of any size is to celebrate your favorite desserts--eating them, making them, preparing the ingredients, or the ingredients themselves. If anyone would like to join in just post your recipes and photos here if you are a crafter I would love to see your layouts and completed book. Keep in mind; if you are completing this challenge, it’s for your end of the year book, you want to keep sizes and colors consistent for a unified recipe book project.

Cookin Challenge 1 –Dessert
Show eating them, making them, preparing the ingredients, or the ingredients themselves.

Cookin Challenge 2 --Cooking out of doors
The concept is to show how you celebrate cooking out of doors, be it grilling, tailgating, picnicking, etc.

Cookin Challenge 3 -- Sides
For this challenge, think about a side dish that is unique to your family. Does one particular person make this dish? Celebrate the ingredients with the recipe, or show that person creating the dish, or present us with the final food product!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

VETERANS DAY


"How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!"
Veterans Day Quotes by Maya Angelou

Monday, November 1, 2010


Our November Diva of the Month is a very active and supportive member at CSDivas! Since Audrey joined CSDivas she has been a faithful player and very diligent in following the Divas Getting Organized challenge. She is a very creative and fun Diva! Please help me welcome Audrey as our Diva of the Month for November!!!
WOW!!! What a surprise thank you Diva’s for selecting me. I was born and raised in Sunny Southern California and have been scrapbooking for over 12 years now. Starting off with my grandchildren’s photos, after having them sitting for years with few people to share them with. I have been a stay at home wife/grandmother since 1994 after quitting my job of 29 years to adopt and raise my 5 grandchildren. This changed my job to picking up and delivering kids from school and their many respective sporting events through out the years. The job of a grandmother is never finished as I now pick up and deliver my great-granddaughters to and from preschools, kindergarten, and dance classes. In addition to scrapbooking I love to cook for crowds, creating or trying new recopies’ keeps my creative mind busy in all I do. Yes, I am a Scrapbooking Diva I found enjoyment in using photos to share the stories of our lives in hopes to inspire many live long after I gone.


There are lots of holiday’s traditions that are practiced this time of the year, so let’s start this season of with a holiday layout page. My challenge for you is to create a layout page sharing one of your family traditions. Include a journal box telling about your tradition.

Here is my sample:

Monday, October 25, 2010

ORIGINAL SPICY BUFFALO WINGS

This is the original spicy Buffalo chicken wings recipe from the Anchor Bar in Buffalo, NY. You can adjust the heat by adding more or less cayenne and Tabasco.

There are many Buffalo chicken wing recipes out there, but if you want to taste the "real" thing give this a try. The chicken wings are deep-fried in the original recipe, but the hot oven works fine for the home version.

Makes 6 Servings of Buffalo Chicken Wings (6 per person)
Cook Time: 25 minutes

Ingredients:

* 36 chicken wing pieces (one wing makes 2 pieces - the "flat" and the "drum")
* 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
* 1 tsp salt
* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 1 1/2 tablespoons white vinegar
* 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
* 1/8 teaspoon garlic salt
* 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
* 1 teaspoon Tabasco sauce
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 6 tablespoons Louisiana hot sauce (Frank's is the brand used in Buffalo)
* 6 tablespoons unsalted butter or margarine
* celery sticks
* blue cheese dressing

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

1. If necessary, cut whole wings into two pieces. In a bowl toss the wings with the oil, and salt. Place into a large plastic shopping bag, and add the flour. Shake to coat evenly. Remove wings from the bag, shaking off excess flour, and spread out evenly on oiled foil-lined baking pan(s). Do not crowd. Bake for about 20 minutes, turn the wings over, and cook another 20 minutes, or until the wings are cooked through and browned.

2. While the wings are baking, mix all the ingredients for the sauce in a pan, and over low heat bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally, and then turn off.

3. After the wings are cooked, transfer to a large mixing bowl. Pour the sauce over the hot wings and toss with a spoon or spatula to completely coat.

These are always served with celery sticks and blue cheese dressing on the side.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

FOOTBALL SESSION OPENS

It's game day and time to feed your football fever. It's buffalo wings time at our house, wings and football the guys could not asked for anything more. I will share some of my favorite recipes and a few that are a most try, ranging from jerked wings to Oriental flavors. So even if you can't handle the hot stuff, I will have chicken wing recipes for you also. Pull out the remote it FOOTBALL SESSION.

Lets state with my favorite:

CROCKPOT WINGS

Spicy chicken wings are cooked in the crockpot with honey and barbecue sauce, along with spicy seasonings.


Ingredients:

* 3 pounds chicken wings (16 wings)
* salt and pepper to taste
* 1 1/2 cups any variety barbecue sauce
* 1/4 cup honey
* 2 teaspoons prepared mustard or spicy mustard
* 2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
* Tabasco to taste, optional

Preparation:

Rinse chicken wings; pat dry. Cut off and discard wing tips then cut each wing at the joint to make two sections. Sprinkle wing pieces with salt and pepper; place wings on a lightly oiled broiler pan. Broil about 4 inches from the heat for 10 minutes on each side, or until chicken wings are nicely browned. Transfer chicken wings to crockpot.

In a bowl, combine barbecue sauce, honey, spicy mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco. Pour sauce over chicken wings. Cover and cook on LOW for 4 to 5 hours or on High 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Serve directly from slow cooker, keeping temperature on LOW. Makes about 30 chicken wings.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

LABOR DAY last day of summer




Labor Day is not just the last big barbecue day of the summer, more importantly it is a time to recognize the contributors America’s working men and women, as well as the achievements of the organized labor movement. Since 1800, other countries have celebrated this day on May 1 however, the first worker's parade ever took place in September in the early 1800‘s. Since then, this day has been celebrated the first Monday in September.

A fun day to enjoy relaxing activities with your family and friends. My mother and father told use that where they lived, the community usually host a big weekend celebration at the park that actually starts on Thursday with activities for the entire family. This includes a live DJ and a dance and talent contest for the youth, a spectacular gospel fest with special guests on Sunday afternoon, and a huge parade with marching bands and colorful floats on Monday. This was also the perfect opportunity for town kids to “strut their stuff” with their coordinating outfits and cool dance steps. After the parade, they spend the day at the park where there’s lots of good food, fun, and celebrations morning ‘til night. they really go all out for this!

Many families host their annual family reunions which brings out of town guests back for all the festivities. Class reunions are also held over this weekend which everyone enjoy because they have an opportunity to see old class mates that they hadn‘t seen in years. Since there’re so much going on, many take vacations during this special time. This makes this holiday the biggest summer event of the year and it seems to get bigger and better each year. I truly enjoy Labor Day, this year our family is having a old fashion fish fry at the park.

Monday, August 23, 2010

MACARONI AND TUNA SALAD

This recipe is easily multiplied for a crowd. Everyone in my family asks me to bring this to our functions in the summer. For us who need a little less on our plates try whole wheat macaroni, low fat mayonnaise, and tuna packed in water.

INGREDIENTS
1 (16 ounce) package macaroni
3 cans tuna (drained)
11/2 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon mustard
1 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped green onions
1/4 cup chopped sweet pickle raises
1 green bell pepper, chopped (or 1/2 red & 1/2 green bell pepper)

DIRECTIONS
Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling water until al dente. Drain, and rinse. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, mix together mayonnaise, and mustard . Season to taste with salt and black pepper.
In a large bowl, combine pasta, celery, onion, sweet pickles, and green pepper, . Stir in dressing, and mix well.
Refrigerate until you ready to serve.

This can be served as meal or a side.

Friday, August 6, 2010

FRUITED CHICKEN SALAD






INGREDIENTS
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 red apple, diced
3 green onions, chopped
1/4 cup sweet pickle relish
1/2 cup mayonnaise (low fat)
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1 (8 ounce) can pineapple chunks, juice reserved
1/8 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 cup chopped pecans
fajita seasoning to taste or your house seasoning

DIRECTIONS
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add chicken and cook until thoroughly cooked and no longer pink inside, approximately 20 minutes. Drain, cool and chop.
In a large bowl, mix together the chicken, apple, onions, relish, mayonnaise, celery, pineapple (with just a little juice for flavor), cilantro, pecans and fajita seasoning to taste. ENJOY

Try grilled chicken or a whole rotisserie chickens

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Smothered Chicken Breasts

This week weight loss dinner give it a try fast and yummy

Smothered Chicken Breasts

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
1 (10 ounce) can French onion soup
2 teaspoons chicken seasoning
1 (4 ounce jar sliced mushrooms, drained
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
Chopped green onions
• Brown chicken breast in skillet. Sprayed an oval slow cooker with Pam placed breast in cooker.
• Pour onion soup over chicken and sprinkle black pepper and chicken seasoning over chicken beasts.
• Place mushrooms and cheese over chicken breasts.
• Cover and cook on LOW for 4 to 5 hours. To give this chicken a really nice touch when ready to serve, sprinkle some chopped green onions over each serving. Serves 4.

Friday, July 9, 2010

JUICED THE FAT AWAY


It doesn’t have to be the same old things. The sky is the limit to the many different ways you can blend the juices, this week I will share just a few.

Mixture #1

Mix 1 cup apple juice
¾ cup spinach juice
¼ cup water
2 (8 oz) servings

Mixture #2
Mix 1 cup apple juice
1 cup carrot juice
1 cup celery juice

Mixture #3
Mix 1 cup asparagus juice
1 cup tomato juice
1 teaspoon honey

Adding ice cubes turns juice into smoothies.
Like some sweetness, try extract flavoring or honey. Mineral water instead on regular water. You can add extra fiber with flax seed or wheat germ. Trying cutting the sweet with lemon or lime.
You can spice up your drinks with Tabasco, Teriyaki or Worcestershire sauce, garlic or other spices you like. Its might be the same old drink but it will have a different taste.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

LOW FAT STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE


Strawberry shortcake is one of the simplest low fat desserts to make. Angel food cake's light texture and sweet taste is the best choice in this recipe.

Ingredients:

1 container strawberries, rinsed and sliced
1 angel food cake (purchased in rectangular shape is the best)
1 low fat container of vanilla ice
1 container low fat cool

For final preparation, cut 1/2 inch of angel food cake and place on saucer. Put a scoop of low fat vanilla ice cream on top. Add 1/2 cup of strawberries, on top of ice cream. Put a dollop of low fat whipping cream and this tasty dessert is ready to serve! This recipe serves 4 but can easily be doubled, or tripled. Enjoy!

STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE

Strawberry shortcake, which originated from the Native Americans who baked
crushed strawberries into a cornmeal cake. strawberry shortcake is a dessert
to round out light summer meal.

Strawberry shortcake

* 3 pints fresh strawberries
* 1/2 cup white sugar
* 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
* 4 teaspoons baking powder
* 2 tablespoons white sugar
* 1/4 teaspoon salt
* 1/3 cup shortening
* 1 egg
* 2/3 cup milk
* 2 cups whipped heavy cream

1. Slice the strawberries and toss them with 1/2 cup of white sugar. Set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Grease and flour one 8 inch round cake pan.
3. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, 2 tablespoons white sugar and the salt.
With a pastry blender cut in the shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Make a well in the center and add the beaten egg and milk. Stir until just combined.
4. Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Bake at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 15 to 20
minutes or until golden brown. Let cool partially in pan on wire rack.
5. Slice partially cooled cake in half, making two layers. Place half of the strawberries on layer and top with the other layer. Top with remaining strawberries and cover with the

Shortcake though it's most commonly a rich biscuit, shortcake can also refer simply to a The classic American shortcake is a large, sweet biscuit that is split in half, then filled and with sliced or chopped fruit (traditionally strawberries) and softly whipped cream.
If it's to hot to bake, you can buy some shortcake, but it's hard to fine, try angle food cake or pound cake. It's not shortcake but it's makes a taste dessert.

JULY SYMBOLS

July's birthstone is the ruby which symbolizes contentment.
The flower is Larkspur or the Water Lily.
The horoscopes are Cancer and Leo.
The dessert of choice for my family is Strawberry shortcake
and homemade strawberry ice cream. This year I add a low fat strawberry shortcake recipe, give it a try everyone said it was yummy.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Happy Fourth of July

Everyone have a great and safe HOLIDAY
I know everyone loves Ribs for the 4th, but I always BBQ some chicken give my Lemon Chicken a try, you will need to double the recipe I found everyone loves Chicken.

EASY GRILLED LEMON CHICKEN

INGREDIENTS
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
4 (6 ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

DIRECTIONS:

Rinse chicken breasts and pat dry with paper towels. Stir together the lemon juice, soy sauce, ginger, and black pepper in a bowl; pour into a large, resealable plastic bag. Add the chicken breasts, seal the bag, and massage to evenly coat chicken with lemon juice mixture. Place in refrigerator to marinate at least 20 minutes, or up to 24 hours
.
Preheat an outdoor grill for medium-high heat. Lightly oil grill grate.

Drain and discard marinade from the bag, and place chicken on preheated grill about 4 inches from heat source for about 6 to 8 minutes on each side Cook until chicken is no longer pink and juices run clear,

Friday, July 2, 2010

WATERMELON

There's more to this fruit than its sweet, red center.
One of the tastiest ways to keep cool in summer is to munch on ice cold watermelon. No summer picnic is complete without watermelon. I will share some of my watermelon recipes and a quick History of THE WATERMELON

Watermelons are in nature an excellent source of vitamins A, C, and B6. They are also a great source of potassium, and extremely low in sodium. Watermelons are a great snack for both children and adults, for the reason that they contain
practically no fat. Historians say watermelons first grew in the middle of the Kalahari Desert. They were a source of water for thirsty traders, who began to sell the seeds in cities along the ancient Mediterranean trade routes.
Cultivation of watermelon spread throughout Africa and, by the 1600s, watermelon made its way to Great Britain, Spain, China and beyond. Watermelon arrived in North America courtesy of European colonists from African slaves.
During the Civil War, the Confederate Army boiled down watermelons as a source of sugar and molasses.

Thursday, June 24, 2010




Try Portabella Mushroom and Eggplant Burgers they are a great change form the
4th of July Ground Beef or Turkey Burgers.

Grilled Vegetables

GRILLED EGGPLANTS

4 baby eggplants (4 ounces each)
Slice each of the eggplants lengthwise in half.
Toss eggplants in prepare vinaigrette as directed below. Grill until tender
Each serving: About 90 calories


GRILLED PEPPERS

2 medium yellow peppers
2 medium red peppers
Cut each lengthwise in half and discard seeds. Place peppers on grill over medium heat and cook, turning peppers occasionally and brushing with some vinaigrette until peppers are browned and tender when pierced with a fork.
Serve with remaining vinaigrette.
Each serving: about 95 calories

GRILLED ZUCCHINI

Slice each of 4 small zucchini (6 ounces each)
Cut lengthwise in half. Prepare vinaigrette as directed. Toss zucchini in vinaigrette. Grill until tender.
Each serving: About 85 calories,


GRILLED PORTOBELLO MUSHROOMS

Trim tough stem ends from 2 medium-size portobello mushrooms (4 ounces each) or 8 jumbo mushrooms. Rinse; pat dry. Prepare vinaigrette as directed. Toss mushrooms in vinaigrette. Grill until tender.

Each serving: About 75 calories,

Grilled Vegetables Vinaigrette

Ingredients
• 2 tablespoon(s) olive or vegetable oil
• 2 tablespoon(s) white wine vinegar
• 2 teaspoon(s) chopped fresh tarragon
• 1/2 teaspoon(s) salt
• 1/2 teaspoon(s) coarsely ground black pepper
• 1/2 teaspoon(s) sugar
• Tarragon sprigs, for garnish


In large bowl, mix olive oil and remaining ingredients except tarragon sprigs. Add vegetables and toss to coat with vinaigrette dressing.

Fourth of July is Independence Day

Independence Day honors the birthday of the United States of America and the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. It's a day of picnics and patriotic parades, a night of concerts and fireworks, and a reason to fly the American flag.
To add to our perfect Hamburger for our picnics lunch and dinners, this year I will share some of my Grilled recipes and a few of my new Grilled Vegetables recipes.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

HAPPY FATHER DAY

HAPPY FATHER DAY to all the Dad's, I give all the father’s my love for taken on a job that no one can do, if it’s done right and with LOVE.

HAPPY FATHER DAY

HAPPY FATHER DAY to all the Dad's, I give all the father’s my love for taken on a job that no one can do, if it’s done right and with LOVE. I would like to share the history of Father’s Day and how being a real father is so very importune to your child or children lives.


A BRIEF HISTORY OF FATHER’S DAY
Sonora Dodd, of Washington, first had the idea of a “father’s day”. The idea came to her when she was listening to a Mother’s Day sermon in 1909. Sonora want a special day to honor her father. William Smart
Her father was a Civil War veteran and was widowed when his wife was giving birth to their sixth child. This left Mr. Smart to raise a newborn and his other five children, on a rural farm in eastern Washington State. After Sonora became an adult she realized the selflessness her father had shown in raising his children has a single parent. It was her father that made the all the parental sacrifices and in her eyes he had show courageous, selfless, and loving man Sonora father was born in June so she chose o hold the first
Father’s Day celebration on the 19th June in 1910 in Spokane Washington.
President Calvin Coolidge, in 1924, supported the idea of a national Father’s Day. Then in 1966 President Lyndon Johnson signed a presidential proclamation declaring the 3rd Sunday of June as Father’s Day. President Richard Nixon signed the law, which finally made it permanent in 1972.

Monday, June 7, 2010

THE PREFECT HAMBURGER

HOW TO MAKE THE PREFECT HAMBURGER
Burgers may be the basic of all picnic menus, but they needn't be boring. Jazzed up with spices and seasonings or topped with your favorite condiments, a good burger is hard to beat. From basic lettuce, tomato, and pickle to sautéed onions or bacon, the possibilities are endless. Burgers just taste better when cooked on the grill and enjoyed outdoors.

Building a better burger is easy when you follow these suggestions:
Make sure the grill is the appropriate temperature too hot, and the burgers will burn on the outside before getting done on the inside. Medium-low to medium heat is best.
Keep the lid closed while cooking. A closed lid retains heat, shortening the cooking time and thus keeping the burgers moist.
Use beef that is no leaner than 85% Fat is needed for the burgers to be moist and flavorful.
You also can use turkey or chicken if you are watching your diet and eating least beef.
If using ground turkey or chicken, add a little broth or olive oil to keep them moist.
Use a gentle touch overworking the mixture will produce a tough burger. Mix ingredients just until combined.
Don't form patties too thick or too thin A ¾-inch thick patty is ideal for even cooking. To keep patties from swelling in the middle, make small indention in the center.
Always clean and oil the grill grate This prevents burgers from sticking, extends the life of your grate and helps put those beautiful grill-marks on your patties.
Turn burgers only once and never, ever, press burgers with the back of a spatula: the sizzling sound may be fun to make, but the pressure releases all of the flavorful juices.
Cook burgers properly for safety's sake; cook ground beef to an internal temperature of 160 degrees F (170 degrees F for poultry).
To check the temperature, insert the thermometer into the patty horizontally for an accurate reading.

Our New Life style newsletter

A newsletter dedicated to assisting us with our choice of a new healthy lifestyle

This is our weekly newsletter, if you would like a copy. email me and I will add you to our mailing list

Reduce Sodium Intake
I like my soul food and the way Mom cooked the food is was high in sodium. How can I have my soul food and eat it too?
If you suffer with high blood pressure you need to watch you salt or sodium intake. 2400 mg of sodium or less is the amount that should be taken daily. ¼ teaspoon of salt is equal to 450 mg, 8 ounces of whole milk has 120 mg, and an ounce of processed American cheese is 400. However, read the labels of the product you buying. Label reading is the best way to control your intake.
Substitution of powder instead of salt for onion or garlic will reduce your sodium intake. An increase in using herbs and spices will elevate the flavor in your recipes.

CORN BREAD RECIPE
½ cup yellow cornmeal
¼ cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
¾ cups nonfat milk
½ cup egg substitute
½ tbsp canola oil

Heat the oven 425 degrees. Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add the milk, egg substitute, and oil to the dry ingredients. Mix well.
Pour the batter into a nonstick pan and bake for 30 minutes.


Sodium intake 315 mg.

Sandra Vaughan, Editor

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day weekend to all, Memorial Day falls on the last Monday of May, commemorates the men and women who died while serving in the American military, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. Many Americans observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades. Everyone have a great time and be safe. Unofficially Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer and June I will share my recipes on grilling up some yummy meal for your back yard party's.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY

Happy Mother's day to all the mothers, give some motherly love today to everyone you meet today.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

MOTHER'S DAY WISH, A PERFECT FAMILY

A perfect family is what we all wish for. We see people that have families that are much different than ours. As experience their unique culture, we wish we had a family like them. But really, having a perfect family isn’t possible. We all will have problems and accomplishments that make us unique from every other family in the whole wide world. So, think hard about how different your family is. Appreciate that you have a family and never alone because they help us through tough times. It is never foolish to wish for a perfect family but is foolish to abandon your special family.

Grandma's Recipe for a Loving Family
4 cups of love
2 cups of loyalty
3 cups of forgiveness
1 cup of friendship
5 tablespoons of hope
2 tablespoons of tenderness
4 quarts of faith
1 barrel of laughter

Take love and loyalty, mix it thoroughly with faith.
Blend it with tenderness, kindness and understanding.
Add friendship and hope.
Sprinkle abundantly with laughter.
Bake it in sunshine.
Serve daily with generous helpings.
Serves one entire home forever.
-Anonymous

Saturday, May 1, 2010

DRINKS FOR CINCOC de MAYO


This my favorite Margarita Drink

Margarita Sunrise

Make any size batch of this recipe by simply multiplying the ingredient measurements by the desired number of servings. For larger batches, stir together all ingredients in a pitcher until powdered sugar is dissolved. Chill and serve over ice. For a sweeter drink, use 1/2 cup powdered sugar instead of 1/3 cup.

Yield: Makes 1 serving
Ingredients
Fresh lime wedge (optional)
Margarita salt (optional)
1/3 cup fresh lime juice*
3 tablespoons orange liqueur
3 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons tequila
1/3 to 1/2 cup powdered sugar
Ice
3 tablespoons club soda or lemon-lime soft drink
2 teaspoons grenadine

Preparation
1. Rub rim of a chilled margarita glass with lime wedge, and dip rim in salt to coat, if desired.
2. Pour lime juice, liqueur, orange juice, tequila, and powdered sugar over ice in a cocktail shaker. Cover with lid, and shake until thoroughly chilled. Strain into prepared glass. Add club soda or lemon-lime soft drink for a little fizz, if desired. Top with grenadine. Serve immediately.
*1/3 cup thawed frozen limeade concentrate may be substituted for fresh lime juice. Omit powdered sugar, and proceed with recipe as directed.

Note: I used Cointreau for orange liqueur and Jose Cuervo Especial for tequila.

I multiplied this recipe by eight on everything, but only added 1 cup of lime juice for an entire recipe for eight. Use the lesser sugar amount. Add 1/3 of club soda to each one. It really makes a difference.


Make a Mocktail

Non-drinking and the guests on diet will love tangy Fresh Ginger Beer. Garnish with a sugar rim and lime slices to give it a pretty cocktail presentation.
If you like ginger ale, you'll love this tangy beverage. Add your favorite rum to create a memorable cocktail. If you can't find superfine sugar, place granulated sugar in a blender, and process until fine. You can find bottled ground fresh ginger in the produce section of the supermarket.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 cup)

Ingredients
2 cups cold water
1 cup fresh lime juice
4 teaspoons bottled ground fresh ginger (such as Spice World)
3/4 cup superfine sugar
3 cups sparkling water
Lime slices (optional)

Preparation
Combine water, juice, and ginger in a blender; process until blended.
Line a strainer with cheesecloth. Strain mixture over a pitcher; discard solids. Add sugar to pitcher; stir until dissolved.
Add sparkling water just before serving. Serve over ice. Garnish with lime slices, if desired.

Calories:
81 (0.0% from fat)

Friday, April 30, 2010

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo


Tex-Mex Beef Tacos
This recipe satisfies my craving for Mexican food, and it's low in fat, easy to prepare,fast and it's under 300. 10 servings (serving size: 1 taco)

Ingredients
Cooking spray
1 cup chopped onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound ground sirloin
1 cup frozen whole-kernel corn
1/2 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
1 to 3 drained canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, chopped
10 (8-inch) fat-free flour tortillas

Preparation
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add onion, garlic, and beef; cook 6 minutes or until browned, stirring to crumble beef. Stir in corn and next 6 ingredients (corn through chiles). Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Warm tortillas according to package directions. Spoon 1/2 cup beef mixture into each tortilla.

Calories:
266 (25% from fat)

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Turkey Enchilada Casserole


Try this tasty turkey enchilada recipe for a quick and easy Mexican-style dinner and it Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Ingredients
1 1/2 pounds ground turkey breast
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons minced fresh oregano leaves or 1 tablespoon dried
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salad oil
2 cans tomato soup
1 jar (8oz) salsa
1/4 cup water
Salt
12 corn tortillas (6 in. wide)
2 cups shredded reduced-fat jack cheese (8 oz.)
Chopped fresh cilantro

Preparation
1. Mix soup, water and salsa and set aside.
2. In a 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat, stir turkey, onion, garlic, oregano, and cumin in oil until turkey is crumbly and no longer pink, about 4 minutes. Stir in 1 cup sauce. Add salt to taste.
3. Meanwhile, cut tortillas in half. Arrange a fourth of the halves evenly over the bottom of a shallow 3-quart casserole, overlapping to fit. Sprinkle a fourth of the cheese evenly over the tortillas, then top with a third of the turkey mixture and a fourth of the remaining sauce, spreading each level. Repeat to make two more layers of tortillas, cheese, turkey mixture, and sauce; top with another layer of tortillas and sauce, then cheese.
4. Bake in a 425° regular or convection oven until cheese is melted and casserole is hot in the center, 18 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with chopped cilantro.

Calories:
249 (20% from fat

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo

WHAT'S COOKIN' for Cinco de Mayo, I have two recipes that are under 300 calories that will satisfies our craving for Mexican food, and it's low in fat, easy to prepare, and fast. You can also serve it with fresh cilantro, sliced green onions, salsa, and fat-free sour cream. What would Cinco de Mayo be without Margarita's, you have to try my favorite Margarita and I have a great Mocktail for all you non drinkers and everyone on a diet like me.

Friday, April 9, 2010

10 Random Things About Me

1. This year I am on a Journey to Wellness and healthy living, my goal is to lose 40+ pounds 2010, by eating healthy, exercise and walking. I have lost about 15 pounds and don't plan on finding them. I started off walking under 600 steps a day, today I am walking 6500+ steps a day my goal is 10,000 steps a day, and exercising three times a week.
2. I have a diplomatic personality very easy going. I go-with-the-flow and refuse to sweat the small stuff.
3. I am competitive, I enjoy competition it give me incentives for self-improvement. Engaging in any contest improve my skill, strength and stimulate the old brain cell, especially when presenting me with difficult task and I don't have to win all the time
4. I never follow all the instructions or direction, I love to work out of the box and come up with something that hasn't been done previously, that is way I love crafting and cooking because you are not bound by rules and the way things have always been done.
5. I hate to write, but love to blog. I don’t see blogging as writing, it’s the free flow of ideas between people, it is a conversation and I love to talk.
6. I am a bargain shopper and love senior day at Thrift Stores.
7. I set my car clock 10 minutes ahead and I am still all ways late.
8. I love science fiction and cheesy horror movies.
9. I planned to write a cook book one day, been working on it for over a year.
10. I love to laugh and have a good time, and just enjoying the wonderful life that God has given me.

Friday, March 12, 2010

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Gouda Cheese 6 of 6.

Gouda Cheese is a creamy cheese it has a rich, buttery flavor, so you may not have thought about Gouda being a healthy cheese. An excellent source of calcium, it's slightly lower in fat and calories than Cheddar, but higher in sodium

Smoked Gouda Chicken

1 teaspoon olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/4 cup butter
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup *flour
1/2 cup *sour cream
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup chopped scallions
1 wheel smoked Gouda cheese, sliced in 1/8-inch
thick slices, divided

Heat olive oil in large nonstick skillet. Sear chicken in skillet to brown on each side. Remove chicken from skillet and set aside.

In same skillet melt butter. Add garlic and brown. Add flour and brown. Add sour cream and yogurt. Mix to make sauce. Add scallions and all except 4 slices of the gouda cheese. Simmer until cheese melts. Return chicken to skillet and simmer about 30 minutes until chicken is cooked through.

To serve, place over cooked *pasta. Add pasta to plate, Spoon sauce over pasta, then place a chicken breast on top. Just before serving place the last 4 slices of gouda on the 4 breasts and allow to melt slightly.

*I used low fat sour cream, whole wheat pasta and whole wheat flour.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Goat Cheese 5 of 6.

Goat Cheese
Also called chèvre, goat cheese can be creamy, crumbly, or semi-firm. It has a mild aroma and a strong, tangy taste. Lower in fat and calories than cheese made from cow's milk, goat cheese is high in protein. It's easily digestible, too, making it a good choice if you have lactose intolerance or dairy allergies. Avoid goat cheese if you're pregnant, as it may have bacteria that can be harmful to the baby.


Goat Cheese Salmon

Ingredients
4 salmon fillets
1/2 cup herb goat cheese
1/4 cup (naturally low calorie) honey/dijon salad dressing
salt and pepper to taste

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a large baking dish.
2. Arrange the salmon fillets in the baking dish. Make small incisions in each fillet, and stuff with equal amounts of the herbed goat cheese. Spread equal amounts honey/dijon salad dressing over each fillet. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Bake salmon 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until easily flaked with a
fork.

Amount Per Serving Calories: 247 | Total Fat: 16.3g | Cholesterol: 68mg


Waldorf Goat Cheese Salad

Ingredients
2 cups red leaf lettuce - rinsed, dried and torn
2 tablespoons raspberry walnut vinaigrette
1/2 cup seedless red grapes, halved
2 tablespoons crumbled goat cheese
2 tablespoons chopped pecans
Directions
1. Toss lettuce with dressing in a mixing bowl; transfer to a serving dish. Scatter grapes, goat cheese, and pecans on top.

Calories: 266 | Total Fat: 15.4g | Cholesterol: 11mg

Thursday, February 25, 2010

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Cottage Cheese 4 of 6.

Cottage Cheese is one percent, two percent, non-fat, creamy or dry-cottage cheese comes in lots of varieties, yet they all share that bright white color, bumpy texture, and classic flavor. A dieter's standby, cottage cheese is low in fat and carbs but soaring in protein and calcium. The downside: it's high in sodium.

Sweet Cottage Cheese and Bananas


Ingredients
1/2 cup cottage cheese
2 teaspoons honey
1 banana, sliced


Directions
1. In a small serving bowl, stir together the
cottage cheese, honey, and banana slices. Serve or eat immediately


Cottage Cheese Chicken Enchiladas


Ingredients
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 lb ground tukey
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 (7 ounce) can chopped green chile peppers
1 (1 ounce) package taco seasoning mix
1/2 cup fat free sour cream
2 cups fat free cottage cheese
1 teaspoon salt
1 pinch ground black pepper
12 (6 inch) whole wheat corn tortillas
2 cups shredded 2% Monterey Jack cheese
1 (10 ounce) can red enchilada sauce


Directions
1. To Make Meat Mixture: Heat oil in medium skillet over medium heat, add turkey, onion and green chile peppers and saute until browned, then add taco seasoning and prepare meat mixture according to package directions.
2. To Make Cheese Mixture: In a medium bowl mix sour cream with cottage cheese and season with salt and pepper; stir until well blended.
3. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
4. To Assemble Enchiladas: Heat tortillas until soft. In each tortilla place a spoonful of meat mixture, a spoonful of cheese mixture and a bit of shredded cheese. Roll tortillas and place in a lightly greased 9x13 inch baking dish. Top with any remaining meat and cheese mixture, enchilada sauce and remaining shredded cheese.
5. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 30 minutes or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Feta Cheese 3 of 6

In Greece it was first made from sheep's or goat's milk; in the U.S. it's usually made with cow's milk. Either way, it has a salty, tangy flavor that comes from curing the cheese in brine, which makes it high in sodium. But it's still a good source of protein, riboflavin, calcium, and phosphorous-and at 74 calories per 1-ounce serving, it's diet friendly, too. Avoid feta if you're pregnant. Soft cheeses such as feta can become contaminated with listeria, a bacteria that can be transferred to the baby

Chicken, Feta Cheese, and Sun-Dried Tomato Wraps

Ingredients

2 (4 ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1/4 cup sun-dried tomato dressing* (do not use vinaigrette)
8 sun-dried tomatoes (not oil packed)
1 cup boiling water
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
4 cups loosely packed torn fresh spinach
4 (10 inch) whole wheat tortillas
1/4 cup sun-dried tomato dressing* (do not use vinaigrette)

* try roasted red pepper dressing it is great

Directions

1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine chicken breasts and 1/4 cup dressing. Seal, and refrigerate for several hours.
2. Preheat grill for high heat. Combine sun-dried tomatoes and hot water in a small bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes, drain, and cut tomatoes into thin slices.
3. Lightly oil grill grate. Discard marinade, and place chicken on grill. Cook for 12 to 15 minutes, turning once, or until done.
4. Cut chicken into strips, and place in a medium bowl with sliced tomatoes, feta, and spinach. Toss with remaining 1/4 cup dressing. Distribute mixture between the four tortillas, and wrap. Either cut in half and enjoy cold, or place briefly back on grill until the tortilla turns warm and crispy.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Ricotta Cheese 2 of 6

Ricotta is smooth, creamy, and slightly sweet, ricotta is one of the most versatile cheeses around, going from lasagnas and dips to desserts. The second highest dairy source of calcium, ricotta is low in sodium and a good source of protein and selenium, an antioxidant. Cut fat and calories by using part-skim ricotta.


Ricotta and Artichoke-Stuffed Chicken Breasts

Ingredients
1 cup ricotta cheese
1 (6.5 ounce) jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 teaspoon dried basil
2 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 pinch ground cumin
1 Tablespoon garlic power
1 Tablespoon onion power
Directions
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a baking dish.
2. In a medium bowl, stir together the ricotta cheese, artichoke hearts, basil, pepper, and cumin. Seasoned the chicken with garlic power, onion power and salt and pepper, place the chicken breasts on a flat surface, and cut from one side through the middle of the breast to within one half inch of the other side. Open the two sides and spread them out flat like an open book. Spread the chicken with the ricotta mixture, and roll up. Place the rolls in prepared baking dish, seam side down.
3. Bake in preheated oven until juices run clear, about 30 minutes. Cool slightly before slicing and serving.

Calories: 386 | Total Fat: 17.6g | Cholesterol: 105mg

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Parmesan Cheese

There are six cheeses you can easily incorporate into a healthy diet today let's look at Parmesan Cheese 1 of 6.

Parmesan has a grainy texture and a nutty, buttery flavor that intensifies with age. It's higher in calcium and lower in sodium than many other cheeses, and one tablespoon of shredded has just 23 calories. Because of its sharp flavor, you can use less and still get a big payoff in taste. The aging process also lowers the lactose content, making Parmesan easier to digest if you have lactose intolerance

Chicken and Zucchini with Parmesan cheese


Ingredients:
1 1/2 pound Zucchini, sliced
2 1/2 teaspoons Salt
3 Whole Chicken Breasts Boned, Skinned, And Split
1/2 cup All-Purpose Flour
1/4 cup Olive Oil
1/4 teaspoon Pepper
1 1/4 cup Parmesan Cheese
1 teaspoon Basil
1 teaspoon Oregano
1/8 teaspoon Nutmeg
2 tablespoons Chopped Parsley


Directions:
Sprinkle sliced zucchini with 2 teaspoons salt, toss and set aside for 30 minutes. Rinse well and drain.
Pound chicken between wax paper until thin; dredge in flour. Heat oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat and brown chicken. Drain and sprinkle with remaining salt and pepper.
Mix 1 cup Parmesan cheese, basil, oregano, nutmeg, and parsley together. Place half of zucchini in a greased 13x9x2-inch pan; sprinkle with 1/2 CUP of cheese mixture. Arrange chicken on top of zucchini and cheese, repeat layers and sprinkle with remaining, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese on top. Cover tightly and bake at 325 F. for 30 minutes. Uncover and bake 15 minutes longer at 375 F. serve immediately.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

CHEESE AND HEALTH

Cheese can be part of a healthy diet if you know which ones are the best choices and know how to use them. Cheese can be high in sodium and fat, but it also delivers powerful nutrients. A 1-ounce serving can pack up to a third of your daily calcium, plus protein and vitamin D, a critical nutrient many Americans don't get enough of. The trick is to know which kinds of cheeses are best and how to use them. We will cover six of healthy cheese and a few healthy cheese recipes over the next two weeks, using the big six.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

WHAT’S ON HAND VEGETABLE SOUP

Here is a simple recipe for chunky vegetable soup using ingredients that you have on hand. This is easy to make and can be served as a starter or as a main course. Don’t worry if you don’t have every vegetable listed; this soup recipe is very flexible. Use whatever you have on hand.
Vegetable soup
1 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
2 carrots, thinly sliced
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
8 cups water or low sodium or low fat vegetable stock
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 sweet potato or rutabaga, diced
1 cup green beans, cut into bite-size pieces
1/2 cup fresh peas
1 cup chopped cabbage, kale, collards, or other green
1 tablespoon fresh or 1 teaspoon dried herbs (thyme, rosemary, tarragon, savory, etc.)
1/2 cup minced fresh parsley
salt and black pepper to taste

Place onion, celery, carrots, and oil in large soup pot. Sauté 10 minutes over medium heat until onions are soft.

Add water or stock, garlic, potatoes, beans, and vegetables. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer 20 to 30 minutes until potatoes are tender.

Add remaining ingredients except parsley, and seasonings. Simmer 10 minutes until vegetables are tender.

Remove from heat. Stir in parsley. Season with salt and black pepper

Monday, February 1, 2010

WHAT'S COOKIN' IN FEBRUARY

I have resolved to take personal responsibly for my physical and spiritual health in 2010. My Wellness Journey will lead me to a health body, mind, and spirit. This year my blog will cover not only Soul Food recipes, but healthy soul food recipes that remove or reduce bad cholesterol's, fats, sodium and sugars, also recipes that my sister and I will create for a healthier body. Have no fear all are recipes will be tested and consumed by myself, family and friends.

Friday, January 1, 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR

How does you family celebrate New Year Day

Our family New Year tradition brings the whole family together (5 generations) and sharing the first meal of the year with a traditional soul food dinner.
It is a long-standing tradition in African American families to indulge in a family or communal New Year's Day dinner featuring cabbage or greens, which symbolize greenbacks (paper money),black-eyed peas which symbolize coins and both giving good luck for the new year.
Try my recipe for Greens and Black-Eyed Peas

COLLARDS GREENS

Ingredients:
5 pounds of collards greens*
2 teaspoon of salt
1 chili pepper
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon onion powder
1/3 cup apple vinegar
½ cup margarine
*several large bunches or 2 bags of pre-cleaned collards green

Techniques:
Take the collard greens and separate the leaves and wash them two or three times, now rinse each leaf individually under cold running water. After you rinse the collard greens thoroughly, stack several leaves on top of each other, roll these leaves together. Then slice the leaves into thin strips using a cutting board and large knife. Rolling them together speeds up the process as you are slicing through several leaves at once.
Next, add your collard greens to the pot. Since this is a lot of collards, you will need to add them until the pot is full. Then allow them to wilt as they cook - then add more. Stir every few minutes to distribute the smoked meat evenly. You want the ham hocks to be falling apart. Add your seasoning cover and cook for 2 hours thirty minutes on medium heat. Taste to confirm they are the tenderness you prefer, if a little bitter add the vinegar and margarine. Serve with your favorite meat dish such as chitterlings or eat the ham hocks or neck bones right along with the collards. My favorite way to cook collard greens is very simple.
I take 2 or 3 smoked ham hocks and put them in a large (6quart) pot of water. Bring the water to a rolling boil and let them boil for about 1 1/2 hours. Add more water as it boils down. The idea is to boil the ham hocks until they begin to fall apart. You should always cook pork very thoroughly and use proper food handling


BLACK EYED PEAS

Ingredients:
1 pound black-eyed peas or 2 package of frozen
4 cups water
1 medium onion
1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3 or 4 smoked necks bones*
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 cup margarine
1/4 teaspoon dried red pepper (optional)
3 cups of cooked rice

Preparation:
Thoroughly pick and wash the black-eyes peas in strainer picking out small pebbles. Place peas in pot and add water covering the peas, place in refrigerator for 24 hours. (If frozen just place into pot of water) Place them on the top of the stove, in a large dutch over. Combine with salt, pepper, onion, water, and pork or other meat, you can add crushed red pepper if you like spicy food. Bring to rapid boil, cover and reduce heat simmer for 1½ to 2 hours or until tender.
Serves 4 to 6

*Clean smoked neck bones (there is a brain stem that runs down the neck of the pig), When the bones are chopped, the stern can be found in the channel-like opening, remove it.
Boil the bones until they are ½ the way tender using enough water to cover, through the boiling period maintain this level of water, drain and use the pot liquor replacing the water, add water to make 4 cups.

Serve on top the rice on your plate.