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Recipes I've Shared:

Crockpot Bean & Kale Soup with Ham

Easy, yummy nutritious soup for cold winter nights

Cooking Light Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes (with cinnamon!)

This is from the March 2010 issue, slightly modified in that I added 1/2 tsp of cinnamon.

The smell of these cooking is absolutely divine! I serve with fresh bananas and sliced strawberries so no syrup is needed. If we feel like syrup that day, we omit the sugar.

Be warned, the batter is thinner than most, but this makes for a light and fluffy cake. We sometimes reduce the size to make extras for reheating during the week for a quick, on-the-run breakfast.

If you have a digital kitchen scale ($19.99 Bed, Bath & Beyond - Biggest Loser Taylor Digital!) the measurements and texture are optimal.

Whole-Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

Hall of Fame Cooking Light Recipe that my family loves! Original recipe calls for 2 cakes with 1 1/2 tsp butter and 2 TB syrup per serving which equals 347 calories, 9.9 g fat, 7.4 g protein, 59.2 carbs, 2.3 fiber and 520 mg sodium. We use spray butter and fresh strawberries to cut fat and calories by a third.

NOTE: DO NOT OVER MIX! The key to light and fluffy pancakes is to only stir the batter until moist and then let it sit for 10-15 minutes. This lets the flours moisten naturally without creating gluten, which toughens the pancakes and the levening agents to age and react.

Blue Ban-Cran Smoothie

Quick and easy, high protein breakfast for hot summer mornings after I do a major workout (ie run 3-5 miles) On mornings where I don't run I substitute plain non fat yogurt for the flavored and Almond Milk for o.j.

Incredible! (1 rating)
Carmelized Figs with Port - Balsamic glaze

Figs are, in my opinion, an under appreciated fruit. I ADORE them and this is a low calorie, luxurious dessert that comes together in minutes and is fancy enough for a formal dinner party. Using aged, imported balsamic vinegar improves the final results even more!

And no, the black pepper is not a mistake.

This sauce is also good over fresh strawberries, grilled pineapple or peaches. Excellent with creme fraiche or low cal frozen yogurt.

Creamy Shrimp Pasta with Spring Vegetables

Quick, creamy, low fat pasta dish for weeknight dinners.

Very Good (1 rating)
Peachy Pecan Crisp

We love summer peaches and this recipe makes excellent and quick use of them.

In a pinch, I've substituted almonds for the pecans, but the pecans give a richer flavor. Serve with a drizzle of fat free half and half, but of course it's best with vanilla ice cream if you can afford the calories!

My Own Private Idaho Potato Salad

This is one of my favorite lunch time salads. I mix up the dressing the night before and cook the potato in the microwave at work because I prefer my potato salad warm, but this can be refrigerated as well.

For additional protein, add a chopped hard boiled egg and increase calories by 70.

Very Good (13 ratings)
Summer Ratatouille

This dish just cries "Summer" and it's one of my favorite dishes to make in late July, early August when the Farmer's Market is flush with these favorite vegetables.

If you prefer, you can peel the eggplant, but we love the added texture and flavor. I often make ahead on Sunday for dinner later in the week as the flavors marry and deepen if allowed to sit a day or two. Serve over whole grain pasta for a healthy vegetarian dinner that your kids will love.

Vegetable Crepes with Herbed Yogurt Cheese

This is a marriage of three different recipes including an old Cooking Light Egg Foo Young recipe from the '90's and my mother's potato pancakes. I eliminated the potatoes to save calories and cooking time.

When we feel like asian, we reduce the onion by half, add scallions and bean sprouts, substitute ground ginger for the nutmeg and create a "dipping sauce" of rice wine vinegar, brown sugar, lime juice, fresh jalapeno, a dash of sesame oil & fish sauce in place of the herbed cheese.

Do not eliminate the step where you squeeze out the excess water from the zucchini/onion mixture. It really does affect the texture of the fritters.

Using a food processor for the veggies makes this quick work, but save the carrots until last or the entire batter turns orange.

Southwestern Minestrone with chicken

Quick, easy and nutritious soup that makes easy use of leftover chicken. For a vegetarian version, use vegetable broth or water, eliminate the chicken breast and substitute chick peas for navy beans increasing to 1.5 cups.

Very Good (1 rating)
3 Way - Black Bean & Summer Corn Salad

The Basic recipe is our favorite summer picnic or BBQ dish when fresh white corn is plentiful, but I have the alternate ingredients in my pantry year round. It can be served either as a salsa with tortilla chips or as a side dish.

See variations below.

Crackling Cauliflower Stir-fry

Quick, fragrant and easy stir-fry converted my husband to a cauliflower fan. Add brown rice for a complete protein, vegetarian meal.

Quick Tuscan Bean & Greens Soup

My husband and I created this soup one night when we were both tired & hungry, but didn't want to go out as it was cold & rainy. We scoured the pantry and veggie bin and come up with this soup. It was quick, nutritious, delicious and even better the next day.

A glass of red wine and a small drizzle of olive oil really brought out the flavor of the vegetables, but is not included in the calories.

Kale or swiss chard could also be used in place of spinach.

Incredible! (1 rating)
Memories of Ireland Vegetable Soup- Part 2

A few years ago our family visited Ireland and I fell in love with the wonderful and sweet vegetable soup served in all the small village cafes. Once state side I became obsessed with trying to figure out the recipe. This is my second and much lighter attempt, (without potatoes and rutabaga) but very tasty and healthy! The parsnips give a naturally sweet flavor that kids love.

Oven Roasted Sesame Green Beans

Quick, easy and oh so flavorful finger food. Serves 4 as a side dish or 6 as an appetizer. Great hot or warm. Adjust the chili peppers & garlic to personal tastes.

Creamy Deli Tomato Soup

Easy and satisfying made from staples I always have in my kitchen.

During the summer use fresh basil and tomatoes and red bell peppers roasted on the grill. Reduce the sugar to 1/2 tsp or eliminate if peppers are really sweet.

For Vegan, use vegetable broth and plain, unsweetened almond milk which reduces calories by 15.

Also good with 1 tsp grated parmesan cheese sprinkled on top, but this isn't in calorie count.

KC's Klassic French Onion Soup

One of my son's favorites. Flavorful and easy to make. Carmelizing the onions is the key to rich flavor. My husband prefer's the traditional toppings while my son and I love the soup the way it is.

NOTE: If you have someone who doesn't like large pieces of onion, this is also good pureed.

KC's Very Berry Protein Smoothie

Quick, easy and filling. Freezing the fruit makes a better consistency. I also buy the flax seeds in bulk, store in the refrigerator and grind my own once a week as I don't like the rancid taste of the flax meal in bags.

This actually makes a very generous serving (almost 3 cups) so you could half it for a snack or pre workout meal and freeze the rest for later. During the winter we use strawberries in place of the mango which actually reduces the calories.

Zesty Reduced Fat Ranch Dressing

Makes about 1 1/4 cups

While fresh chives and shallots are favorite seasonings, the Penzey's Fox Point spice blend makes such a difference in the taste that it is well worth the trouble of ordering online if you don't have a store near you.

Fresh ground black pepper also makes a significant difference in taste. I've adjusted the lemon juice, mustard and garlic according to the tastes of family and friends with consistent results.

Refrigerate for up to one 1 week. (If it lasts that long!)

Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Perfect for vegans and meat eaters alike. Smoky and creamy without dairy. Quick and easy to make but even better if allowed to sit for a day.

Also makes a great pasta sauce if you omit the blending, coarsely chop the peppers before adding to the liquid and reduce water to 1/2 cup.

In a pinch you can substitute bottled peppers but fresh are so much better.

Incredible! (1 rating)
Turkey Tamale Soup

A colorful and intensley flavored soup that makes great use of leftover thanksgiving turkey. Even more flavorful if you make your own stock from the turkey carcass. Makes approx. 6 - 1 1/2 cup servings