Every one who’s eaten italian with me knows one thing: I LOVE PASTA! Especially baked pasta. lasagna and baked ziti are my two favorite things in the world. (Del Posto’s 100 layer lasagna, any one?!) So with my new “lifestyle” (going to the gym 6 days a week, eating a pretty- lenient but still hard for me because I love dessert If It Fits Your Macros (IIFYM) diet– I really wanted to find a way to make a leaner baked ziti that wouldn’t feel like a cheat, but still have the cheesy goodness we all love so much- especially in below 0 weather that we get to enjoy here in Ithaca for months on end!
Here’s my easy recipe for 6, with the macros attached to it- & yes, it really is just 341 calories per serving!!!
Preheat Oven to 350 degrees
Brown meat in pan (do not add fat, the 5% fat is enough!) and boil pasta.
Add spinach to the meat, to wilt the spinach slightly
Stir all ingredients together (use only 1/2 cup mozarella!)
Put mixture in 9×9 square (or similar) oven pan
Top mixture with the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella
Bake for 25 minutes, and allow to cool before cutting!
Happy new year! It wasn’t a resolution, but over winter break I have designed a healthy eating plan for myself, and have been exercising/lifting weights. I am feelings great, and am now a firm believer that one does not need to eat bland to eat well. Clean eating is enjoyable, and you feel so much better physically from eating this way that I don’t know if i’ll ever go back to not being more conscious of what I consume on a day to day basis. Here’s one of my go-to recipes when I want a fulfilling and flavorful meal.
-Preheat oven to 350* F
-Cut off bottom of pepper, and even the top/stems if necessary
-Clean out pepper and rinse. Make a tiny hole where the bottom stem was
-Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat, and sauté garlic. Add Rice, coat all grains with oil, and add water. Cook covered until done.
-Season and cook meat with 1 tablespoons of olive oil
-Chop Celery, Carrots, and Onion together, and add vegetables, and rice to the beef mixture
-Add corn to mixture, and combine well. Add parmesan cheese if you’d like
-Put peppers in a pan, I use an 8×8 with 4in sides
-Stuff the peppers fully, and then pour tomato sauce over the peppers
-Put the “tops” on the pepper, and cover with aluminum foil, and cook for 45 minutes or until peppers are cooked
While in NYC for the Hotel show, we had the honor of enjoying a [5 hour] meal at Aquavit on 55th Street. In addition to the aquavit [flavor infused vodkas] we had amazing wine pairings, and got a tour of the property following our meal. The service was amazing, and we met a fellow CIA-graduate [I’m doing the joint degree program with Cornell’s Hotel School] who we got to share our experiences regarding school, career choices, etc. with.
I made this very simple and delicious meal for my mom, and while I wont be divulging my risotto recipe just yet, Chicken Francese is a perfect dish whether for date night or for a tuesday night pick me up. It can be served over pasta, and modifying the quantity is easy.
Flour (season with salt & pepper!)
Chicken Cutlets, Boneless, Skinless and Thin
Lemons: 1 lemon sliced, 2 juiced
Pinot Grigio or other white wine (optional)
Salt & (white) Pepper
Oil (canola is fine)
Heat oil in a sauté pan
Dredge the Chicken Cutlets in seasoned flower, and then dip in eggs
reduce heat to medium, and cook chicken until golden, about 5 minutes on each side
remove chicken, and hold in aluminum foil while you make the sauce
In the remaining oil, place slices on sauté pan, and cook until fragrant, hold on top of chicken cutlets in aluminum foil
deglaze with wine and/or chicken stock (3/4 cup white wine & 1 3/4 cup stock, for 2 1/2 cups of liquid total), bring to a simmer and reduce by 3/4
Remove from heat and stir in 1/2 a stick of butter, and lemon juice
Serve sauce over chicken, and sprinkle chopped parsley on top.
*Recommended wine pairings: Pinot Grigio, Pouilly-Fuisse, Sauvignon Blanc, or Champagne*
I love entertaining, and am always thinking of new ways to incorporate favorite ingredients to make dinner menus. This time around, we made a mozarella, spinach, and ricotta cheese stuffed chicken breast. The top marinade is parsley, garlic, oil, sale, and pepper- simple, and delicious! (If you’re uncomfortable fabricating chicken, you can buy boneless skinless breasts, and roll up the filling inside a roulade)
Stuffed, Roasted Chicken
Chicken Breasts, on the bone, skin on
Frozen Spinach, thawed and drained
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
in a bowl, combine 1 part spinach with 2 parts mozzarella, and 3 parts ricotta cheese, stir together and add salt and pepper. You can change the proportions to suit your tastes
separate the very end of the bone lightly from the skin
skin side down, cut a 2 inch long “pouch” in the chicken breast that should be at least 3 inches deep
put the ricotta mixture into a piping bag, and fill pouches completely
put the breasts skin side up on a sheet pan with oiled parchment paper. Season with salt and pepper. In a separate bowl, combine oil with chopped parsley, rosemary, thyme, and garlic. brush the skin with the oil
Bake for 30 minutes, or until chicken is completely cooked, and skin is browned
remove, and allow to rest for 10 minutes.
The stuffed chicken breasts go well with just about anything. I served them with green beans, and mashed potatoes (mostly because that was what I was in the mood for)