Tuesday, May 1, 2012

90/10 Challenge, Week 1

In the 90/10 Challenge, I and several other participants are committing to eating 90 percent of our total calories from tiers 1 and 2 of Michi's Ladder, with up to 10% from tiers 3 and 4.  To help myself achieve this, and to support my group, I'm going to publish my weekly menu to meet this standard.  If you're interested, here's the ladder:

Sunday: Grilled Pork Tenderloin smothered with Grilled Onions, Grilled Asparagus, Citrus Quinoa

For the pork:

Trim fat from pork; preheat grill to med-high heat.  spray grill rack with cooking spray

Reduce heat to med or med-low.  Cook pork directly on grill rack 15-20 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees, turning occasionally for those pretty grill marks.

let rest 5 minutes.

Slice into medallions, fan the medallions onto a platter, and top with grilled onions, and serve.

To grill onions:

Vertically slice two large yellow onions, and toss with 1/2 t. dried thyme, 1/2 t. salt, and 1/4 t. pepper.  Spray grill basket with cooking spray.  Dump onion mixture into grill basket and grill 10 minutes or so or until onions are tender and translucent, stirring often.

To grill asparagus:
Wash and trim asparagus (1 lb).  Cut into 2 inch pieces on the diagonal.  Toss asparagus with 1 t. kosher salt and 1/2 t. pepper.  Coat with cooking spray, and grill in a grill basket coated with cooking spray for 10-15 minutes or until tender-crisp.  You have not had asparagus until you have had grilled asparagus!

Monday:  Bruschetta Chicken, steamed green beans, toasted garlic bagels

Bruschetta Chicken

6 med. roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1/4 cup finely chipped fresh basil leaves
1/2 t. sea salt
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1 T. balsamic vinegar
1/4 t. black pepper
1 T. olive oil

1 T. chopped fresh oregeno
1 T. chopped fresh basil
1/2 t. chopped fresh thyme
1 t. chopped fresh italian parsley
2 T. lemon juice
2 T. balsamic vinegar
1 T. olive oil
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/2 t. black pepper
1/4 t. sea salt
4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts

1. For topping, combine all ingredients in a medium bowl.  Cover and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.

2. For chicken, combine all ingredients in a large zip top plastic bag.  Shake to distribute well, seal, and marinate in refrigerator for at least one hour.

3. Preheat oven to 350.

4. Remove chicken from bag; discard marinade

5. Place chicken in glass baking dish.  Cover with foil and place in oven for 30-40 min, or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

6. Serve with salsa on top; garnish with fresh basil leaves. 

Toasted Garlic Bagels:
1 whole grain bagel, sliced
2 T. plain, nonfat yogurt
2 t. minced fresh garlic

Spread yogurt evenly onto the cut sides of each bagel half.  Top evenly with garlic.  Broil 2-3 inches from heat for 2-3 minutes or until toasted.  Cut each half in half.  Serves 4.

Tuesday:   Zen Salmon, steamed broccoli,  steamed brown rice

Wednesday: Chicken Kabobs with Greek Barley Salad (reduce olive oil to 2 T.)

Thursday: Awesome Omelette, Fresh Kiwi and Red Grapes

Awesome Omelette:

1/4 c. sliced mushrooms
1/4 c diced bell pepper (any color)
1 c fresh spinach
1/4 c. diced tomatoes

1 c. egg beaters or 4 egg whites, beaten
2 T. reduced fat feta cheese
2 T. chopped green onions

Salt and pepper, to taste

Heat nonstick pan over med heat.  Add mushrooms and peppers and saute 4-5 minutes.  Add spinach and tomatoes and saute until spinach wilts and tomatoes are warm.   Put veggies in a bowl and set aside.  Wipe pan with paper towel, and coat with cooking spray.  Add eggs and swirl the pan until they are pretty thin.  Cook 3-4 minutes or until top is barely wet.  Add reserved toppings to one half of your eggs.  Sprinkle feta over veggies.  Fold the half of the eggs without the toppings over the toppings and cook until eggs are done, about a minute.

Slide omelette onto a plate, and sprinkle with green onions.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper, to taste. 

Friday: Naked Buffalo Burger, Colsen Slaw, baked sweet potatoes (no toppings)

Naked Buffalo Burger (adapted from Eating For Life's Colorado Buffalo Burger)

1 lb ground buffalo, divided into fourths and formed into patties

Grill patties on med 5 min on each side or until desired doneness.  Serve bunless with homemade or commercial sugar free ketchup and mustard.

Colsen-Slaw (named for my son, who LOVES it!)
  • 4 cups packaged cabbage-and-carrot coleslaw mix
  • 1 granny smith apple, cored and diced
  • 3 tablespoons nonfat plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons agave nectar
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cider vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
Combine coleslaw mix and apple and set aside. Combine remaining ingredients. Add dressing to veggies and mix well. Serve immediately or refrigerate until serving.
Saturday: Orange Roughy, Grilled Zucchini, Steamed Brown Rice

Orange Roughy (this is technically a breaded food, which is on tier 5, but since you're making your own breading out of 90/10 compliant foods, I consider it to be compliant.  If it's too iffy for you, skip the breading.)

1.5 lbs orange roughy (4 fillets)
1/4 C. bread crumbs (make your own by putting one whole grain bagel into the blender or food processor and pulse until crumbly, then measure out 1/4 cup.)
1 t. italian seasoning
1/4 C. reduced fat parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg white, or 1/4 c. egg beaters
3 T. fresh parsley, chopped

In a shallow dish, combine breadcrumbs, italian seasoning, and parmesan.  In small bowl, mix egg white until slightly frothy.

Lightly brush both sides of the fish with egg white, and then coat with breadcrumb mixture.  Arrange fillets on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or coated with cooking spray.  Sprinkle with parsley.   Bake at 400 or until fish is opaque and flakes easily with a fork, about 20 minutes.

Grilled Zucchini
Mix 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar, 1 t. olive oil, 1 t. agave nectar or honey, 1 t. minced fresh garlic, 1/4 t. salt, and 1/2 t. coarse ground pepper in a shaker cup or small bowl.  Shake or whisk until well combined.  Add marinade and 3-4 zucchini, sliced 1/4 inch thick on the diagonal, to a zip top bag.  Marinade at least 30 minutes.

Grill over med. heat in a grill basket coated with cooking spray, 10-15 minutes or until crisp-tender, stirring occasionally. 

Sunday, April 29, 2012

My Kitchen Innovation

I often "invent" things in my head, or out loud to my husband, and that's as far as my idea goes until someone else, equally brilliant, has the same idea and takes it all the way to market, at which time I slap my forehead and say with a smirk of satisfaction, "I knew that was a good idea." 

Well, one idea that I've had for quite awhile and have yet to see it on the market, is an interactive, wi-fi compatible, cabinet-mounted touch screen.  I have about a hundred cookbooks, but most of my menu planning is done online.  (I confess, a big reason for this is that I'm too lazy to transcribe each recipe into my blog each week, when posting the link is so much easier.)  And, although I have a laptop or four, I lack sufficient counter space to place a laptop on the counter while I'm cooking, and it makes me nervous to have liquids near my keyboard.  So I usually print the recipe so that I can have it in my kitchen while I cook.  This is a waste of ink and paper and natural resources.

I also have a counter mounted DVD player, and when I have a big project to do in the kitchen, I'll put on a movie to keep me company.  I would love it if my drop down screen would also display my recipes and play Netflix movies!  Killing two birds, or seven, with one stone.

So I need a screen that goes online, with no keyboard (hence the touch screen), plays movies, and maybe even has an option for tracking my grocery list and the ability to send that list to my phone.  Okay, so there is the ipad option, and they do make ipad holders that are cabinet mounted and drop screen.  But they are quite pricey.  My invention would cost a third of the ipad!

Someone smarter than I will take this one to Shark Tank, I just know it, and I'll buy it once it hits the scene.

Sunday: Zen Salmon, steamed green beans, steamed brown rice

Monday:  Stuffed Potato Skins, Steamed Artichokes

Stuffed Potato Skins

4 large baked Idaho potatoes, with half the flesh scooped out
4 cups chopped steamed broccoli
1 cup shredded low-fat, low-sodium cheddar cheese
8 pieces well-done turkey bacon
8 T. chopped scallions or fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 325.  Stuff each potato half  with 1 C. broccoli.  Top each half with 1/4 c. cheese.  Crumble 1 slice bacon over each half.  Place on a baking sheet and bake 15-20 min or until cheese is melted and each half is warm throughout.  Garnish with scallions or parsley.

Tuesday:  Seafood Gazpacho, Fresh Milled Whole Wheat Bread

Seafood Gazpacho

1 C. chopped cucumber, skin on, seeds removed
1 red bell pepper, cleaned and roughly chopped
1 orange bell pepper, cleaned and roughly chopped
4 roma tomatoes, chopped
1 small red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups low-sodium tomato juice
2 T. olive oil
1/4 C. red wine vinegar
1 pinch salt
1 T. ground black pepper
1 lb large shrimp, cleaned, shelled, and boiled
cilantro, chopped, to taste

Place first 6 ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until all vegetables are uniform size.  Add tomato juice, oil, and vinegar and pulse until well combined.  Season with salt and pepper.  Transfer soup to a soup bowl, cover, and refrigerate at least 1 hour.  While soup is chilling, chill shrimp.  When ready to serve, slice shrimp lengthwise.  Portion soup into soup bowls and lay one fourth of shrimp on each portion.  Garnish with cilantro if desired.

Fresh Bread (as copied from thehappyhousewife.com)

  • 1 1/2 cups warm water
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4-4 1/2 freshly milled hard spring wheat flour (sifted)
  • 1 Tbs yeast
I make this recipe in my bread machine by adding all the wet ingredients and then all the dry ingredients. Add the yeast last. I use the dough setting, but if your machine has a whole wheat setting you can use that too and bake it right in your machine.
If you are making this recipe by hand combine all the wet ingredients. Then add yeast, salt, and half the flour. Mix until the dough is smooth. Then add the rest of the flour. Add the flour slowly so you don’t use too much. Knead for about 10 minutes. Let rise until doubled. Shape into desired pan and then rise again until doubled. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. This will make 2 loaves of bread or two large pizzas.

Wednesday: Shaun T's Easy Sirloin Tip Roast, Roasted Brussels Sprouts, Baked Sweet Potatoes

Shaun T's Easy Sirloin Tip Roast
3 lbs beef sirloin tip roast, trimmed of all visible fat
4 cloves garlic, peeled and halved
1 t. coarse ground black pepper
cooking spray

preheat oven to 400.  secure roast with cooking twine.

make 8 1/2 inch slits around the perimeter of the roast and insert 1/2 garlic clove in each slit.  Sprinkle entire roast with pepper. Spray roasting rack with nonstick spray.  Place roast on rack in roasting pan.

roast in preheated ofen 20 minutes.  reduce temp to 325.  Continue cooking about one hour, or until meat thermometer reaches desired level of doneness. Loosely cover with foil, and let rest 15 minutes.  To serve, slice as thinly as possible against the grain.  10 servings

Thursday: Power Corn Pancakes, fresh berries

Friday: Sweet and Spicy Citrus Tilapia, Citrus Quinoa, Steamed Edamame