Sunday, November 27, 2005

Whole Wheat-Date Bars


For the Filling:
2-1/4 cups pitted dates (about 11 ounces)
3/4 cup of apple cider

For the dough:
1-1/4 cup of whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1/4 cup wheat bran
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
2/3 cup packed dark-brown sugar
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1-1/4 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 egg
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce


To make filling: Bring dates and cider to a boil in a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until dates are soft and almost all liquid has reduced, about 10 minutes. Let cool completely. transfer to a food processor. Puree date mixture until smooth; set aside.

To make dough: Whisk together flours, bran, salt and baking soda in a medium bowl; set aside. Put sugar and zest in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium speed for 30 seconds. Add butter, mix until combined, about 1 minute. Add egg; mix until fluffy. Mix in flour in 3 batches, alternating with 2 batches of applesauce. Divide dough in half. wrap each half in plastic; shape into a rectangle. Refrigerate until firm, about 2 hours.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Roll out one piece of dough between 2 lightly floured sheets of parchment paper to a 9-1/2 by 13 inch rectangle. Dust with more flour, if needed. Remove top piece of parchment. Trip dough to a 9 by 11 inch rectangle. Tranfer rectangle on parchment to a baking sheet.

Cut rectangle in half lengthwise. Spread a heaping 1/4 cup filling down half of each length, leaving a 1/4 inch border. Fold dough over; pinch to seal. refrigerate until firm, about 20 minutes. Repeat with remaining chilled dough and filling.

Bake about 20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool on sheets on wire racks 5 minutes. Cut into 1-1/2 inch bars. Transfer bars to racks using a spatula; let cool. Bars can be stored in airtight containers for up to 3 days.

Pumpkin Cheesecake with Butter Pecan Crust


1- 1/4 cups finely crushed graham crackers
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
2 tablespoons melted butter

2/3 cup nonfat plain yogurt
2 (8 oz) packages of light cream cheese softened
1-3/4 canned pumpkin
1 egg
1 egg white
1/2 cup granulated Splenda
1/2 cup of brown sugar
1-1/2 cups nonfat evaporated milk
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

To make crust: Combine graham cracker crumbs, pecans and butter in a bowl and mix well. Firmly press mixture into the bottom of a 9-inch springform pan that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Place crust in freezer while preparing the filling.

To make filling: In a medium bowl, beat yogurt and cream cheese until creamy. In a separate bowl, combine remaining filling ingredients and beat until creamy. Stir into cream cheese mixture and beat until well mixed and creamy.

Pour filling into crust and bake for 2 hours or until middle slightly jiggles when tapped. Cool in refrigerator at least 4 hours before serving. Garnish with whipped topping and a sprinkle of cinnamon if desired.

Makes 16 servings.

Nutritional Information:
Per Serving:
185 calories
6 g of fat, 2 g saturated
5 g of protein
20 g of carbs

Pan Seared Salmon with Basil Herb Sauce


6 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons of olive oil
2 sliced garlic cloves
4 tablespoons of chopped fresh basil
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons grated Romano cheese
salt and Pepper

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
4 (6oz) salmon fillets, seasoned with salt and pepper to taste


Puree the sauce ingredients, adding salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Heat a large skillet on high and add olive oil and vinegar. Heat until mixture sizzles. Add salmon seasoned with salt and pepper, cover skillet with a lid and cook for 3 to 4 minutes on high. Carefully turn salmon and cook for 4 minutes more with lid on.

Top the cooked fish with sauce.

Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional Information:
350 calories
24 g fat, 4 g saturated fat
34 g of protein
4 g of carbs

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Hazelnuts


2 pounds of Brussel Sprouts, trimmed and cut in halves and quarters
3 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons olive oil
Pinch of salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine all ingredients in a baking dish, tossing well to coat. Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes or until Brussel sprouts are fork tender. Remove from oven, toss mixture and taste for salt and pepper and extra vinegar. Serve wam or cold.

Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Nutritional Information:
Per serving:
114 calories
7 g of fat, 1 g saturated
4 g of protein
11 g of carbs

Friday, November 11, 2005

Roasted Pears With Chocolate Sauce

4 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, and halved lengthwise
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon granulated Splenda

Chocolate Sauce:
1/4 cup 1% soy milk
1 ounce semisweet chocolate, finely chopped

Mint sprigs for garnish (optional)

To make the pears: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly coat a 13" x 9" baking pan with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, toss the pears with the lemon juice and sugar. Arrange the pears in a single layer in the prepared baking pan. roast for 35 minutes, or until the pears are tender and light brown.

To make the chocolate sauce: Menwhile, heat milk in a small saucepan over medium heat just until it begins to bubble. remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate. Whisk until smooth.

Spoon the chocolate sauce onto 4 dessert plates adn top each with 2 pear halves. Garnish with the mint (if using).

Makes 4 servings

Nutritional information:
Per serving:
150 calories
3 grams of fat

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Couscous with Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Feta and Mint


1 cup whole-wheat couscous, uncooked
1 cup frozen green peas, thawed
1/2 cup minced sun-dried tomatoes, packed in oil, with 1 tablespoon oil from jar
4 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
4 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
salt and ground black pepper to taste


Bring 1 and 1/2 cups of water to boil in a medium saucepan. add couscous, remove from heat, cover and let stand for 5 minutes.

Transfer couscous to a large bowl and add peaas, sun dried tomatoes, reserved oil, feta cheese and mint. Toss to combine. season with salt and black pepper. Divide evenly on 4 plates and serve warm, or refrigerate and serve chilled.

Serves 4

Nutritional values:
1 serving= 1 1/4 cups
344 calories
9 grams of fat
52 grams of carbs
13 grams of protein