Thursday, January 19, 2017

A Healthy Week in the Kitchen

Nibbling on all of those wonderful Christmas treats was fun while it lasted.
Clearly it was time to reign in the sugar consumption and get back on track with healthy eating habits.
So, I recently gathered all of the magazines that had been piling up around here and pulled out the ones focusing on healthy eating.  My personal favorite being Cooking Light.
I selected a collection of recipes that appealed to me and then spent the past week trying them out.
Something to satisfy my sweet tooth in a healthier way seemed a good place to start.
A "dessert with benefits" sounded like just the thing.

I've been seeing recipes similar to this for awhile and been curious to see if they really could satisfy my chocolate cravings.
They went together quickly.  Apparently hazelnuts are hard to come by in my area so I skipped them altogether and, instead, rolled them in chopped toasted pecans.  Pecans are everywhere here and I do love them.

I've got them stored in the refrigerator and pop one out when those chocolate cravings hit, often around 3:00 in the afternoon.

This whole grain quick bread caught my eye.
Could it really be possible to have a slice of bread like the one in the photo without any yeast or rising times involved?
My mouth was watering for toast in the morning, so I got busy on this one.

It also went together quickly.
Before going into the oven it was looking good all covered in pumpkin, sesame and sunflower seeds.  A little flaxseed too.

Nicely risen after baking.
We've been enjoying it all week for our morning toast and to accompany soups and salads for lunch and dinner.
Will definitely be making this one again.

In case you are interested, here's the recipe.

A lightened up version of the classic meatloaf dinner.
Comfort food in a healthier package.
The magazine recipe was for a whole grain meat loaf, but I used my long standing favorite turkey loaf recipe.  I did, however, make the Quick Creamy Potatoes and Roasted Brussel Sprouts to go with it.  Yum, Yum and Yum!!!
This meal was delicious.  Those potatoes with the cauliflower and garlic were so creamy and smooth.  In the past I have tried the "faux tatoes" made with just cauliflower mashed up to imitate mashed potatoes.  The texture just wasn't right and they tasted to me like what they were (mashed up cauliflower).  This recipe was that wonderful mashed potato consistency and that subtle hint of garlic made them so flavorful.
Brussel sprouts are something I've never really made much.
Growing up I remember them being boiled and mushy.  Yuck!
Roasting them with a bit of olive oil, salt and pepper is like eating an entirely different vegetable and one that I will gladly eat over and over again.

For me the new year is like a clean slate.
A good time to re-up the efforts on the things that are important in one's life. 
So far I'm focusing on:
healthy eating
mindful exercise
more reading time
learning new things
trying more of the recipes I think someday I'll try.

Off to a good start so far.

How is your new year progressing?
Have you tried any new recipes or read any good books?


  1. I've got a recipe for Moonshine that I am mixing up for tomorrow. 😏

    I am not having broccoli or cauliflower cooked so that's out, but the brownies and bread look good.

  2. Roasted brussel sprouts are my favorite to have alongside some garlicky mashed potatoes. And to think I hated brussel sprouts as a child. My mom would make me sit at the table forever just to choke one down. I love making healthy energy bites with simple ingredients. One of my favorite snacks is dried figs with peanuts and some green tea. It satisfies the sweet and salty craving perfectly. :)

  3. Hi Kim-I agree about the Brussels Sprouts. My mom boiled the life out of them-they were awful.
    I think the way we prepare them nowadays is far far better. It's a whole new vegetable.
    Those brownie bites look sooooo tempting!

  4. That bread sounds wonderful! I always love using buttermilk in quick breads...makes them so rich and good. My sister sent me some healthy recipes in a card yesterday that I want to try. Veggie pizza is one of them! And I'm reading another mystery by Louise Penny...a favorite author! Hugs!

  5. You've been busy in the kitchen and it all looks delicious.
    I've always loved brussel sprouts anyway and eat them roasted quite a lot. I like to roast them with potatoes.
    I need to go through all my saved recipes that I mean to try one day too. Thanks for in inspiration to get started.
    I'm reading a good book now, The Mountain Story. It is book number 4 for the year.

  6. All great recipes!! I am fond of Hazelnuts but here too they are hard to find.

  7. All these dishes look delicious! Fresh eating is so appealing at this time of year. It's as if we want to clean our palates as well as ours homes.

  8. Like you, I'm back to the healthy eating after the holidays. Those brownie bites look really good for chocolate cravings. I have some similar recipes "pinned". I don't know if you're familiar with Lara Bars - they're made with dates, as well. Do you have a Trader Joes or Whole Foods near you? If so, they have hazelnuts.

    1. Melanie, Thank you so much for the tip on the hazelnuts. We do have a TJs and a Whole Foods nearby. I will check them out for the next batch. I did have a Larabar once and thought it was delicious. I didn't realize they were made from dates. Will have to pick some up soon.

  9. Hi Kim - haven't seen you post for a while so hope all is Ok with you and your family.
    Enjoying this mild February hopefully - we have had a gentle winter so far - however you never know around here, remember the snow in Feb. 2 years ago!!!!!!

    Hugs - Mary


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