Chicken Milanese with Celery Root Puree

Over the past summer I have had the opportunity to spend many Saturdays at the Farmer’s Market and it has really opened my eyes to availability and seasonality of foods. When you shop at the grocery store you see the same fruit and vegetables stocking the aisles nearly every month of the year but at the Farmer’s Market you see exactly when food is available and at it’s peak – because if it’s not, you probably won’t be able to find it. I’ve also found that if you are looking for something a little bit more unique you likely won’t find it at Superstore or Save On but you can almost always find it at the City Market on 104 Street!

Celery root is something that I have never used before in cooking and I actually didn’t even know what it looked like. So when I was wondering around Kuhlmann’s I had to ask someone to send me in the right direction and boy am I happy they did! Here’s a photo of what celery root or celeriac looks like:

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Anyways, I found a recipe for Chicken Milanese with Celery Root Puree on the Canadian Living website and I was excited to try it out (after looking at three different grocery stores for celery root and finally finding it at the Farmer’s Market). Chicken Milanese is a Latin American dish where breaded meat fillet preparations are known as a milanesa. I lightened this one up by baking the chicken rather than frying it and getting rid of the cream in the puree and substituting milk instead.

This would be a great dish to make for friends because it is delicious, not overly adventurous for those picky eaters and looks beautiful!

Chicken Milanese

Ingredients:

4 chicken cutlets
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 egg
1 Tbsp grainy mustard
1 cup panko bread crumbs
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 Tbsp lemon juice
3 cup arugula
1 cup celery root leaves (I added them in because they were just so dang tasty!)

Celery Root Puree:

1 celery root, chopped
1 russet potato, chopped
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1/3 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
1/4 cup skim milk
1 Tbsp margarine
salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place flour in shallow dish. In separate shallow dish, whisk egg with mustard. Place panko in third shallow dish. Dip chicken into flour, shaking off excess; dip into egg mixture, letting excess drip back into dish. Press into panko to coat. Place on waxed paper–lined rimmed baking sheet; refrigerate for 10 minutes.

Using an olive oil mister or cooking spray, lightly coat baking sheet. Place breaded chicken on sheet and lightly coat chicken (to get a nice golden crust). Bake for 15 minutes or until inside is no longer pink.

Celery Root Purée: Meanwhile, in large pot of boiling water, cook celery root, potato and garlic until tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Drain; return to pot. Dry over low heat, shaking pan often, for 1 minute. Transfer to food processor; add Gruyère cheese, milk, margarine, salt and pepper. Purée until smooth.

In bowl, whisk olive oil with lemon juice toss with arugula and celery root leaves. Serve over chicken and celery root purée.

Four Grain Pancakes

I’m not quite sure how I feel about this whole having a stat holiday on a Tuesday thing. The reason I least like Sunday’s is because the whole day is in anticipation of Monday – getting groceries, planning meals, doing laundry, cleaning the house, etc. By putting a stat holiday in the middle of the week it’s like getting two Sunday’s rather than two Saturday’s and that is definitely the lesser option. Anyways, to celebrate having an extra Sunday Stephanie came over and we watched Julie and Julia! Every time I watch that movie I get inspired to cook classics – not the fancy ‘superfoods’ cooked in coconut oil, crusted in chia seeds, and dipped in vegan cheese sauce kinda food. So what did I do? I downloaded “The Joy of Cooking” app and obsessively started going through it. I’m going to make a point of cooking something from it each week because I think it’s crazy that I have recipes for nut butters and chia seed puddings stored in my memory but I wouldn’t be able to make a loaf of bread without Google!

To celebrate sleeping in on a Tuesday I made Four Grain Pancakes with a few healthy substitutions because I just can’t help myself…

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Makes 18 pancakes (4″)

Ingredients

1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup cornmeal
1/4 cup large flake oats
2 tbsp Splenda2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 3/4 cup skim milk
2 tbsp margarine, melted
2 tbsp 0% greek yogurt
2 tbsp apple sauce
3 eggs

Instructions

Whisk all dry ingredients together in a large bowl.

In a smaller bowl, combine milk, margarine, yogurt, apple sauce, and eggs.

Mix the wet ingredients quickly into the dry ingredients. Don’t over beat. Use just enough strokes to moisten the dry ingredients.

Test your pan by dropping a small amount of cold water into it. If the water sputters the pan is ready to go! Spray the pan with a small amount of cooking spray.

Pour the batter into the pan and allow to cook for 2-3 minutes. When the surface of the pancake begins to bubble check for brownness and flip the pancake. The second side will cook in half the time.

Serve immediately or keep warm in a 200 degree oven on a baking sheet.

I topped mine with some homemade Nutella and fresh bananas but you can top it with syrup, fresh berries, PB, or whatever you have on hand!

Chocolate Hazelnut Spread!!

I recently came across a recipe for homemade Nutella…this is BIG news for me as I have a little bit of a love affair with the chocolate and hazelnut combo. Nutella, hedgehogs, bacio ice cream – the list continues. Any excuse to indulge in chocolate hazelnut spread is a good one, but I can now say that this little gem is a part of my regular and healthy diet! By no means is this the real thing, but it tastes dang close when you put it alongside peanut butter in a sandwich 🙂

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Chocolate Hazelnut Spread
Adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie

Ingredients

2 cups raw hazelnuts
1 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup cocoa powder
1/3 cup Splenda
pinch of salt
1/2 cup skim milk

Ingredients

Roast hazelnuts for 8 minutes at 400 F
Rub hazelnuts in a damp towel to remove skins
In a food processor, blend the hazelnuts until they’ve turned to butter
Add all other ingredients and blend until mixture has a smooth consistency

Enjoy!

Eating with the Seasons

My absolute favorite part of the summer includes eating fruits and vegetables that are in season! They are more flavorful, more affordable, and provide more nutrient value. With our very short growing season upon us, it is the time to start thinking about seasonal cooking! In the month of June you should try to center your cooking around foods such as asparagus, salad greens, peas, green onions, potatoes, radishes, rhubarb, strawberries, and tomatoes. A good way to know what is in season is to visit the farmers market and see what is being offered by the local farmers! I find it ironic and beautiful that rhubarb and strawberries are both in season in June and pair so perfectly together. Try this easy, reduced sugar strawberry-rhubarb jam recipe from The Realistic Nutritionist:

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Ingredients
Makes 7 cups

  •  1 1/2 pounds fresh strawberries, tops removed & chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds rhubarb, diced
  • About 1 – 2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice

Directions

  1. Place strawberries, rhubarb, sugar (1 cup) and lemon juice in a large sauce pan.
  2. Carefully mash the strawberries a bit (with a fork or wooden spoon) until they are squishy.
  3. Cook until sugar has completely dissolved, about 3 – 5 minutes. Taste the mixture to see if it needs more sugar. If so, add another 1/4 – 3/4 cup. Then cover and reduce heat to low. Let jam simmer for about 20 minutes, or until mixture reaches 220 degrees F.
  4. Remove from heat and immediately transfer to sterile mason or canning jars. Cover with lid and chill for an hour. Then serve, keep or enjoy!

 

Chickie Dough?!

As some of you may know Karmel and I have recently embarked on a business venture. With little to no business expertise and a recipe for Cookie Dough Hummus we decided that we were more than capable of running a business after watching Shark Tank on a Saturday afternoon. Who wouldn’t buy a delicious and nutritious treat from two Registered Dietitians, right? And so Chickie Dough was born. Chickie Dough is chickpea based dip that rivals the comfort and flavor of your favorite cookie dough but with the impressive nutritional value of hummus. Being high in fibre and protein, as well as, low in fat and sugar makes this an ideal alternative to typical dessert dips that are laden with butter, cream cheese, and sugar. There are three flavors  – Chocolate Chip, Peanut, and Trail Mix – with a feature flavor each week such as Monster Cookie and Chocolate Mini Egg. Chickie Dough is great for dipping with graham crackers, fresh or dried fruit, and pretzels. You can find us at the City Market Downtown inside City Hall for the next two weeks and then we will be moving outdoors at the 104 Street Market as of the May long weekend. Hope to see everyone out supporting local food in Edmonton!

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Make This, Not That – Holiday Party Edition

There is no harder time of the year to keep your diet on track than the holidays. Every party and gathering that you attend will be sure to include a spread of high fat, high calorie foods and drinks. Research shows that on average people gain only one pound over the holiday season due to extra indulgence, but that single pound is never lost. Between the ages of 20 and 50 years you could find yourself sitting 30 pounds heavier solely due to eggnog, candy cane bark, turkey, and mashed potatoes. Does this statistic surprise you as much as it surprised me? This year, throw a party that won’t be forever remembered on your hips.

Make This, Not That.

5 Jumbo Tiger Shrimp with 1 oz of Cocktail Sauce contains 128 calories and 1 gram of fat.

Whereas, 4 Bacon Wrapped Scallops rings in at 285 calories, 21 grams of fat and 45 minutes of shoveling snow before you work them off.

1/4 cup of Hummus with 1 Whole Wheat Pita will supply 185 calories and 6 grams of fat.

Whereas, 1/4 cup of Spinach Dip with 1 Whole Wheat Pita sets you back 400 calories and 37 grams of fat. Better strap on your skates, because this dip requires 60 minutes on the ice before its gone.

2 Chicken Skewers adds up to 200 calories and 3 grams of fat.

Whereas, 4 Honey Garlic Chicken Wings tops up at 240 calories and 12 grams of fat and it would take 30 minutes of cross country skiing in the cold to burn them off!

Date Bran Jingle Balls Recipe

1 Date Bran Jingle Ball (http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/date_bran_jingle_balls.html) contains 104 calories and 6 grams of fat.

Whereas, 1 Chocolate Hedgehog packs 135 calories, 9.5 grams of fat and requires 40 minutes of holiday shopping to get rid of.

1 cup of Mulled Wine (http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/mulled_wine.html) has 174 calories, 0 grams of fat and a ton of holiday flavor.

Whereas, 1 cup of Rum and Eggnog will bring you 403 calories, 19 grams of fat, and 50 minutes on the stationary bike!

Do yourself and all your guests a favor, you don’t have to forfeit flavor over the holidays to keep your weight in check 🙂

Broiled Salmon with Corn and Barley Risotto

Alex doesn’t like fish. So needless to say, I have been lacking in omega 3 since moving in with him in April. This was my first attempt to convert him into a salmon lover and it was MUCH more successful than I expected. Who knew it would only take one delicious meal?!

Salmon

Ingredients:

2 salmon fillets

salt and pepper to taste

2 teaspoons lemon juice

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

2 1/2 cups water

cooking spray

1 onion, diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

1 cup pot barley

1 cup frozen corn kernels

3 green onions, chopped

1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

1/4 cup fresh parsley

1/4 cup plain greek yogurt

Ingredients:

1. In a large skillet, coat with cooking spray and cook onion and garlic until softened.

2. Add barley, cook stirring to coat.

3. Stir in corn and green onions. Add water and broth. Cook until creamy and barley is tender (about 45 minutes).

4. Stir in parmesan cheese, parsley, greek yogurt, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, salt and pepper.

5. Coat salmon with cooking spray, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and top with 1 teaspoon lemon juice.

6. Cook salmon on broil for 10 minutes or until cooked in the center.

 

Grilled Shrimp with Mango Coconut Rice Salad

I love summer produce. But, most of all I love mango. I was introduced to this amazing summer fruit by an old family friend at the ripe young age of 8 and I never looked back! I came across this recipe and I knew immediately it would be delicious and perfect for a hot summer day (which we have definitely had a few of lately).

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Ingredients (makes 6 servings):

1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic

1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger

1 tablespoon soy sauce

4 teaspoons curry powder

1/8 teaspoon paprika

1/8 teaspoon ground cumin

1 1/2 pounds medium shrimp, peeled and deveined (about 36 shrimp)

2 cups water

2/3 cup coconut milk

1 1/4 cups uncooked jasmine

3/4 cup shredded carrot

2 cups diced peeled mango

1 1/2 cups diced red bell pepper

1/2 cup sliced green onions

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

1/2 teaspoon salt

Instructions:

  1. Combine first 6 ingredients in a medium bowl. Add shrimp; toss to coat. Cover and chill 1 hour.
  2. Bring water and coconut milk to a boil in a medium saucepan; add rice. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes or until the liquid is absorbed. Add carrot and next 7 ingredients (through salt); toss gently to combine.
  3. Prepare grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
  4. Thread 6 shrimp onto each of 6 skewers. Place skewers on grill rack or grill pan coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side or until shrimp are done. Serve skewers over salad.

If you are looking for a few more vegetables to add to the plate you can quickly blanch something of your choice. I used green beans and asparagus, as they needed to be used up but bok choy would also work well. The shrimp skewer was topped with a simple mango salsa consisting of diced mango, red onion, red pepper, lime juice, and cilantro for an added freshness but the shrimp definitely have enough flavor to stand alone as well 🙂

Canteen

Over the past week I have had the opportunity to celebrate a very important milestone in my life…Convocation! And as we all know, no celebration is complete without food and drink to indulge in with friends and family. I called Canteen the day of and they were able to fit in my table of three at 5:30 pm. To our surprise, we were seated at the chef’s table at the back of the quaint restaurant. After browsing over the menu (even though I’ve looked it up a million times online) we decided to share a few of the small plates. Chickpea fries with romesco and chorizo stuffed, bacon wrapped dates with red pepper sauce were at the top of my wish list and my mom and Alex agreed.

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The fries were quite neutral in flavour but they had a great texture and crunch. As for the dates….I just love dates… especially wrapped in bacon and stuffed with sausage. Enough said.

We ended up getting a range of entrees so we could have the opportunity to taste as many things as possible. My mom went for the feature of the day, duck breast served with a risotto cake, grilled pear, braised red cabbage, asparagus, and sour cherry jus of some sort, Alex had the pork chop with crispy pork belly with a roasted beet BBQ sauce and gnudi succotash, and I chose the halibut topped with preserved lemons and tempura sea beans (one of my FAV ingredients) served with white beans, ham hock, and escarole in a smoky broth. There was not one unsatisfied person at the table, in fact we were all blown away. Just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, I was served with an adorable retro bottle of diet coke!

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diet

The whole experience was exceptional – from the server to the decor to the unique menu. Our night was finished off with a personalized explanation of the desert menu which led to a full belly of chocolate terrine with creme anglaise and chocolate, orange, almond bread pudding.

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I would absolutely recommend Canteen for any occasion or a spontaneous night out. The prices are reasonable (compared to their sister restaurant The Red Ox Inn) and the food is interesting and tasty.

Huevos Rancheros Verdes

A few weekends ago my friend Stephanie turned 23 and as per usual we celebrated over delicious food! Lucky for me, my friend Natalie was also in town for a visit 🙂 Wonderful people and things to celebrate equals experimentation in the kitchen (with hopes of culinary miracles).

We decided on brunch, which made it quite easy for me because I’ve been wanting to make Huevos Rancheros for ages now. I wanted a version that was lightened up because in my experience it has been a bit heavy and saucy. Needless to say, I found the perfect balance.

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Ingredients

2 cups romaine lettuce, diced

1 green onion, diced

2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped

1 teaspoon olive oil

2 teaspoons lime juice

salt and pepper to taste

1- 15 oz can pinto beans

1/2 cup tomatillo salsa

8, 6 inch corn tortillas (I got mine from the farmers market)

cooking spray

3/4 cup low fat cheddar cheese, shredded

4 eggs

Instructions

1. Combine lettuce, green onion, oil, lemon juice, cilantro, salt and pepper in a bowl and set aside.

2. Combine beans and tomatillo salsa.

3. Coat both sides of each tortilla with cooking spray and assemble in overlapping pairs.

4. Spread 1/3 cup of bean mixture over each set of tortillas and top with shredded cheese. Bake for 10 minutes or until warm and cheese is melted.

5. Fry eggs in pan and season with salt and pepper.

6. To serve, top each tortilla with a fried egg and a generous heaping of the lettuce mixture.