Archive | February, 2015

Spicy Oven Fried Fish Tacos


I prepared this recipe at the KUTV Health Expo this weekend.   The unique preparation yields a light and fresh oven-fried fish taco with
all the big flavor you’d expect from traditional fried tacos but still meets my mindful eating requirements.  Any extra tomatillo salsa can be used to brighten scrambled egg whites, top grilled chicken, or even stirred into soup for a spicy change of pace.


1#                                          Tomatillos, outer husk removed and halved

1large                                  White onion, cut into thick slices

1ea                                        Poblano pepper

1ea                                        Jalapeno pepper

3 ea                                      Garlic cloves

1C                                          Fresh cilantro leaves, packed

1t                                           Fresh lime juice

1t                                           Brown sugar

1t                                           Olive oil or pan spray

                                                Freshly ground black pepper and salt


½ C                                       whole wheat flour

½ C                                        Masa or Cornmeal

2 t                                         Coriander

2 t                                          Cumin

2 t                                          Cayenne

6                                             egg whites, whipped with a pinch of salt and 2 T water

1#                                          tilapia fillets

Shredded red and green cabbage, chopped tomato, queso fresco

Cilantro yogurt dressing (mix 1/4 C nonfat Greek yogurt with 2T chopped Cilantro, 2 t Siracha sauce  and juice of 1 lime)

Corn tortillas



Prepare Salsa: This salsa may be prepared indoors using a grill pan or outdoors on a charcoal or gas grill.  You may also roast the vegetables under a broiler on a rimmed baking sheet.

Place tomatillos, onion slices, garlic, poblano & jalapeno peppers in a bowl and toss lightly with olive oil or pan spray.

Turn burners to high and heat the grill pan until hot, about 10-12 minutes.  Turn burners to medium before placing vegetables on the grill pan.  Place tomatillos, onion slices, garlic and peppers on the grill and cook, turning as needed, until the vegetables are lightly charred on all sides.

Transfer vegetables to a bowl and cover with plastic film.

Transfer vegetables to the work bowl of a food processor.  Pulse the vegetables with the cilantro, sugar and lime juice until roughly chopped.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.  You may need to add a little water if sauce is too thick.  Set aside.

Prepare the Tacos:

Heat oven to 400 degrees.  Coat a rimmed baking sheet with non-stick spray. Set aside.

Whisk together whole wheat flour, masa, coriander, cumin and cayenne.  In a separate bowl combine egg whites, 2 T water and salt, whip until soft peaks form.

Cut tilapia fillets into ½” strips.  Dip fillet into flour mixture, egg white mixture, and then again into flour masa mixture.   Place fish on prepared baking sheet.   Lightly spray fillets with pan spray.  Bake for 4 minutes.  Remove baking sheet from oven.  Carefully flip fish strips over and lightly spray again.  Return to oven and bake an additional 3 minutes and bake until fish is cooked through and topping is crispy and golden.

Warm Tortillas:

Toast the tortillas over the open flame of a gas burner until lightly charred, about 30 seconds per side.  Immediately wrap in a kitchen towel or aluminum foil to keep tortillas from drying out.  Alternately, warm tortilla in an oven or microwave wrapped in a damp paper towels.

Serve tilapia wrapped in warmed tortillas with queso fresco, tomatoes, tomatillo salsa and cabbage mixed with yogurt sauce

Serves 6


Salty Sweet Peanut-Buttery Snack mix




I love salted caramels, peanut butter and bittersweet chocolate….who doesn’t???  This recipe is a take on traditional Chex snack mix using healthier ingredients to make a snack mix that, while not low calorie is higher in fiber, protein and flavor than the regular mix. Traditionally prepared Caramel Chex mix is about 50% fat.  By adding in the plain air popped popcorn, the high protein Kashi cereal, and reducing the caramel, chocolate and peanut butter used, the fat content is reduced to about 30%.  The trick for me, however, is keeping the portion size in moderation!


3 C                                           Rice Chex cereal

3 C                                           Kashi Go-Lean Crunch cereal

2 C                                           pretzels, any variety

6 C                                           Air popped popcorn

1 C                                            peanuts

½ C                                          pumpkin seeds

½ C                                          coconut


1 stick                                    Butter

1 C                                           Brown sugar

¼ C                                          kayro syrup

¼ t                                           baking soda


½ C                                          chocolate chips

¼ C                                          peanut butter

Large flake sea salt

Prepare snack mix:

Combine all snack mix ingredients in a large bowl.  Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper.  Place 3 C of snack mix on each sheet pan, leaving the remainder in large bowl.   Set aside.

Prepare caramel:

Combine butter, sugar and corn syrup together in a saucepan.  Stir over medium high heat until mixture come to a boil.  Cook for 2-3 minutes without stirring.  Remove from heat and add baking soda and vanilla.  Pour hot caramel over one of the reserved sheet pans of snack mix and toss lightly.  Place in a preheated 250 degree oven and bake for 15-18 minutes.  Remove from oven and sprinkle with sea salt.  Cool.

Prepare chocolate peanut butter:

In a small skillet over low heat, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter.  Stir frequently to completely combine.  When melted,  pour mixture over second reserved sheet pan of snack mix and sprinkle with sea salt.   Set aside to cool.

Add cooled caramel and chocolate peanut butter snack mix to reserved snack mix in mixing bowl .  Toss well.  Store in an airtight container.

30 servings


Valentine’s Day Lobster Pasta



 2 ea                                    lobsters, 1 ½ # each

2 T                                         butter

1 C                                        carrot, chopped

1 C                                        celery, chopped

1                                             bay leaf

1                                             bunch thyme

2 t                                         olive oil

2 cloves                             garlic, chopped

1 C                                        onion, chopped fine

1 C                                        dry white wine or substitute chicken or vegetable stock

2 C                                        canned tomatoes in juice

¼ C                                        heavy cream or half and half

Salt and pepper

1 #                                        strand pasta cooked to package directions

Chopped parsley and lemon zest for garnish


Steam or boil lobster.  Cool and remove meat from shells and set aside.  Split lobster heads in half and clean.  Remove meat.  Roughly chop head and tail shells.  Heat butter in large saucepan.  Add chopped shells, carrot, celery, bay leaf and thyme.  Cook for a few minutes until fragrant.  Add 3 ½ C water and simmer rapidly until reduced by half.  Strain and set aside.  In the same pan, over medium high heat, sauté onion and garlic, taking care not to let them brown.  Add wine (or stock) and simmer until slightly reduce and alcohol has cooked off.  Add tomatoes and broth.  Cook until reduced slightly.  Add cream and reserved cooked lobster.  Toss with cooked pasta.  Place in serving bowls and top with parsley and lemon zest.

Serves 2-4



january lunch specials 006


This recipe is a unique and healthy twist on regular beef Sloppy Joes.  It uses low fat ground chicken and lentils as stand-ins for the usual ground beef.  Both the chicken and the lentils are high in protein, packed with fiber and low in fat, making them a healthy additions to this recipe.  There is also a flavor punch from the cilantro slaw that makes these Joes really satisfying.


1/3 C                      Plain Greek Yogurt

2 T                          Low fat Mayonnaise

3 T                          Honey

2 T                          Cider Vinegar

4 C                          Cabbage, Shredded

1 T                          Cilantro, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste


3 C                          Water

1 C                          Brown Lentils, Rinsed

1#                           Chicken Breast, Ground

2 cloves                Garlic, Minced

1 Large                  Yellow Onion, Chopped

2 T                          Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Olive Oil pan spray

¼  t                       Cayenne pepper

2 C                           Ketchup

1 T                          Prepared Yellow Mustard

1 T                          Brown Sugar

Dash                      Worcestershire Sauce

1 T                          Molasses

Salt and Freshly Ground Black Pepper

4                              Whole wheat hamburger buns, split with bottom half hollowed out and toasted



Combine water and lentils in a saucepan.

Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium.

Cover and simmer until lentils are tender – about 30 minutes.

Take care not to overcook.

Drain and set aside.


Whisk Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, honey, vinegar, salt and pepper together.

Toss with shredded cabbage and cilantro.

Set aside.


Saute onions and garlic in olive oil in large skillet over medium high heat.

Cook until the onions have softened and are translucent.

Stir in ketchup, mustard, molasses, brown sugar, Worcestershire, and cayenne.

Simmer 5-7  minutes until thickened.

Set aside.

Sauté ground chicken in oil in a nonstick skillet over medium heat until cooked through.

Add cooked lentils and reserved sauce.

Simmer 5 minutes.

You may need to adjust consistency with a little water.


Spoon chicken-lentil mixture into bottom buns.

Top with slaw and toasted top buns.

Serves 4