- 2-½ lbs (40 oz) raw, boneless beef chuck clod roast (should yield six 5-oz cooked servings)
Crockpot spice blend:
- 2 Tbsp water
- 1 Tbsp black pepper
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 4 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 tsp dry mustard
- ½ tsp salt or salt substitute
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 cups (1-¼ lbs) whole mushrooms, trimmed
- 3 cups (7-8 large stalks) celery, roughly diced
- 3 cups green beans, trimmed
- 2 cups scallions (12-14 scallions), roughly chopped
Trim all visible fat from roast. Rub black pepper and garlic onto roast; place in crock pot. Make several small shallow slits in top of roast. In small bowl, combine remaining spice blend ingredients; pour over meat. Cover; cook on low 8-10 hours or on high 4-5 hours. Add vegetables during last 30-60 minutes of roasting. Recipe should serve six 5-oz servings of roast and 3 vegetable servings each.
30 day Challenge
- 14 oz raw top sirloin steak (should yield two 5-oz cooked servings)
- 2 cups lettuce or mixed salad greens
- 1 cup (1 medium-large 3” x 2-¾”) yellow pepper, sliced lengthwise
- 1 cup (2 small 2-2/5”) tomatoes, wedged or sliced
- 3 Tbsp Newman’s Own® Lighten Up Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
- 2 Tbsp red onion, chopped
Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Trim all visible fat from meat. Brush 1-½ Tbsp dressing lightly over one side of steak and over cut sides of peppers. Reserve remaining 1-½ Tbsp for later use. Place steak and peppers on grill, dressing sides down. Grill steak 5 minutes on each side or until medium doneness (160° F) and grill peppers 10 minutes (peppers do not need turning) or until al dente (tender-crisp). Meanwhile, place greens in 2 serving bowls; top with tomatoes and onions. Cut steak across the grain into thin slices; cut peppers. Arrange steak and peppers over salads. Drizzle with remaining 1-½ Tbsp dressing.
30 day challenge
- ¾ lb (12 oz) raw, boneless lamb chop loin* (should yield two 5-oz cooked servings)
- 6 cups (1 large bunch) fresh spinach
- 2 cups portabella mushrooms (3 medium mushroom cups)
- 1 cup (8 medium) cherry tomatoes, halved
- 4 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 tsp dried rosemary
- ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Non-stick cooking spray
- Dash of salt and/or pepper (optional)
*This recipe can also be made with chicken breast: start with 1 lb raw, boneless, skinless chicken breast to yield two 6-oz cooked servings.
Lamb: Preheat broiler. Trim all visible fat from lamb. Spray rack in broiler pan with non-stick cooking spray for 3 seconds. In a small bowl, combine garlic, dried rosemary, and black pepper. Place lamb on prepared rack and cover with half of garlic mixture. Broil 4 minutes, 4 inches from heat; turn lamb over. Cover lamb with remaining garlic mixture. Broil 2-4 minutes or until cooked through. Vegetables: Spray medium skillet with non-stick cooking spray for 2 seconds and heat over medium heat. Add mushrooms and sauté. Once mushrooms are near desired tenderness, add spinach and tomatoes and sauté an additional 2-3 minutes. Serve lamb over vegetables. Salt and pepper to taste if desired.
My 30 day Challenge
- 1 lb (16 oz) portabella mushroom caps
- 2 cups shredded moderate-fat mozzarella cheese (3-6 g fat per oz)
- ½ cup (1 medium 2-3/5”) fresh tomato, chopped
- ½ tsp finely chopped fresh rosemary or 1/8 tsp dried rosemary
- 2 tsp fresh lemon juice
- 2 tsp fresh cilantro, chopped
- 1 tsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tsp olive oil, divided
- 1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1 clove garlic, minced
Preheat oven to 350°F or outdoor grill to medium-high heat. In a medium-sized bowl, combine chopped tomatoes and shredded mozzarella; toss with ½ tsp of olive oil, rosemary, black pepper, and garlic. Remove stems from mushroom caps and discard. Using a spoon, scoop out interior of mushrooms to create “mushroom bowls.” In a small bowl, mix ½ tsp olive oil, lemon juice, and soy sauce. Using a pastry brush, brush soy sauce mixture on both sides of mushroom caps. In the oven: Bake mushroom caps in oven until soft, then divide tomato and cheese mixture into mushroom caps. Cook an additional 2 minutes, or until cheese is melted. On the grill: Once warm, grill mushroom caps, starting with stem-side down, 5 minutes on each side or until soft. Spoon ¼ of tomato and cheese mixture into each cap. Cover and grill about 2 minutes or until cheese has melted. (For easy cleanup, place a piece of aluminum foil directly on grill; lay mushroom caps on aluminum foil.) Garnish with cilantro. Each serving includes two mushrooms and ½ cheese and tomato mixture.
My 30 day Challenge
- 1-¾ pound (28 oz) large raw shrimp, peeled and de-veined (leave tails on); if using frozen, fully cooked shrimp use 1-1/3 lbs (about 21 oz) (either starting portion should yield three 7-oz servings)
- 3 8-oz packages of House Tofu Shirataki brand angel hair noodles
- 1 cup (2 small 2-2/5”) fresh or canned tomatoes, diced (if using canned tomatoes, drain liquid)
- ½ cup (1 small 2-½” x 2”) green peppers, chopped
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp lime juice
- 1 clove garlic, pressed
- ¼ tsp salt or salt substitute
- ¼ tsp ground black pepper
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp dried parsley flakes
- ¼ tsp garlic powder
- ¼ tsp paprika
- 1/8 tsp dried thyme
- 1/8 tsp onion powder
If using frozen shrimp, thaw. De-vein and peel shrimp. Make the seasoning blend by combining all the spices in a small bowl. Drain liquid from noodles and rinse thoroughly, set aside. Preheat a large skillet over medium heat. Once pan is heated, add olive oil and stir in pressed garlic. Immediately add shrimp, green bell peppers, and lime juice. Sprinkle the entire seasoning blend over shrimp and peppers. Stir. Sauté shrimp and peppers 3-6 minutes. Add drained noodles and continue to cook shrimp, peppers, and noodles an additional 2-4 minutes or until shrimp begins to brown and peppers are al dente (tender-crisp). Remove from heat, toss with tomatoes.
The Health Program
Today officially starts prep for my 30 day challenge. So for the next 30 days, I will be posting recipes from that. All these recipes are lean and healthy. If you are interested in loosing weight and getting healthy, join me on my 30 day challenge.
- 24 oz raw, boneless, skinless chicken breast (should yield three 6-oz cooked servings)
- 2 cups (2 small) summer squash, halved lengthwise and cut into 1” chunks
- 2 cups (18 medium) mushrooms, quartered
- 1-½ cups (1 small-medium) zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into 1” chunks
- 1 cup (8 medium) cherry tomatoes
Zesty Lemon Scallion Sauce:
- ¾ cup scallions (4-6 scallions), chopped
- 6 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 Tbsp hot red pepper sauce
- ½ tsp salt or salt substitute
- ¼ tsp black pepper, freshly ground
If using wooden skewers, soak in water 30 minutes. In small bowl, combine scallions, lemon juice, olive oil, hot red pepper sauce, salt, and black pepper; set aside. (You may wish to reserve part of this sauce for finished kabobs.) Preheat grill to medium heat. Thread kabobs with chicken, zucchini, squash, mushrooms, and tomatoes. Brush kabobs before and during cooking with sauce. Grill kabobs 10 minutes, turning once, until cooked through.
The fibrous flesh of spaghetti squash resembles long noodles after cooking and shredding. Although the squash noodles differ in flavor from traditional flour-based pasta noodles, you can use them in much the same way as pasta. The squash has a mild, nutty flavor that complements lighter pasta sauces, making it a healthful low-carbohydrate replacement for spaghetti in your favorite dishes. Use the squash as the focal point of a light meal or as pasta-like side dish.
Cut a washed spaghetti squash in half lengthwise. Scoop the seeds out of the center.
Lay the squash cut side down on a baking sheet. Poke the rind all over with the tines of a fork. Bake in a preheated 350 degree Fahrenheit oven for 45 to 60 minutes, or until the flesh is tender enough to pierce with a fork.
Flip the cooled squash halves over to reveal the flesh. Scrape a fork down the length of each squash half, separating the spaghetti-like strands from the rind.
Toss the squash strands in a tomato-based pasta sauce to create a meal similar to spaghetti. Alternatively, coat the strands in melted butter with a sprinkling of Parmesan cheese and crushed pepper. Most pasta sauces, except heavy cream sauces, complement the squash noodles well.
Pasta is a global favorite, but not all pasta is alike. Whole-grain pasta has a chewier texture than regular pasta, but it’s also more nutrient-rich. Whole-grain pasta wins out over regular pasta every time as your healthiest choice. If you’re having trouble making the switch to whole-grain pasta, start with a half-and-half blend of the two pastas and increase the percentage of whole-grain pasta each time you cook it.
All grains are whole before they are milled or refined. Whole grains contain an inner layer called the germ, a middle layer called the endosperm and an outer layer of bran. When whole grains go through the milling or refining process, the nutritious bran and germ are removed, leaving only the starchy endosperm, which is what regular white pasta is made from. Check the ingredients list on the pasta food label to ensure the words “whole grain,” “whole wheat” or another whole grain is listed as the predominant ingredient.
Whole-grain pasta beats regular pasta when it comes to fiber content. A 1-cup serving of cooked whole-grain pasta contains 3.9 total grams of fiber, while the same amount of white pasta contains 2.3 grams. Fiber is the part of a plant food that your body can’t digest. It is crucial to a healthy diet because it helps move food waste through your digestive tract, reducing constipation. It helps lower blood pressure and also helps keep your body’s blood sugar levels stable.
Regular pasta may be fortified with iron and other nutrients, which means that certain nutrients like B vitamins and folate that were removed during the refining process are added back into the pasta. While the carbohydrate and fat content of both pastas is similar, whole-wheat pasta provides the most protein, and the calcium content for whole-wheat pasta is double that of regular. While a 2-ounce serving of regular pasta contains 108 milligrams of phosphorus and 30 milligrams of magnesium, its whole-wheat counterpart contains 147 milligrams of phosphorus and 82 milligrams of magnesium. Phosphorus helps build and protect your bones and teeth. Magnesium is crucial for many chemical reactions in your body.
When certain starch-rich foods, such as pasta, are cooked and then cooled, their starch changes form, making it more resistant to digestion. Resistant starch, which is a form of fiber, helps maintain good colon health and low blood cholesterol levels. To get the most benefits from nutrients and resistant starch, it’s best to choose whole-grain pasta instead of pasta made from refined white flour. A cold pasta salad makes an excellent resistant-starch choice.
While the glycemic index, which refers to the effect food has on your body’s blood sugar levels, ranks both regular pasta and whole-wheat pasta in the low range — under 50 — the whole-wheat variety still comes out the winner with a GI of 37 compared to regular pasta with a GI of 41. Overcooking your pasta swells and gelatinizes its starch grains, making them more available for digestive enzymes. This increases the food’s GI. Serve your pasta al dente — firm to the bite — so that it is digested more slowly, so about 7 mins.