Wednesday, November 17, 2010
A Lighter Holiday Dessert – Crimson Cranberry Crisp
I belong to the Spark Team Culinary Artists.
We have a challenge this month called: An All American Holiday Table. Our challenge was to “lighten up” a favorite holiday recipe. We also were to submit a “fitness minute” idea.
I thought I would share my entry with my Spark Friends too today:
I have decided to submit a light dessert recipe that I will be making during the holidays.
Since I know that I will be preparing and eating more main dish entrées than normal during these days – I have decided a little sweet finish like this would be most appropriate. It will satisfy my desire for something sweet, but won’t require a major portion of my daily calories. In fact it’s 191 calories for a serving and the recipe makes 6 servings.
It is a lighter version of one of my favorite fall desserts – Apple Crisp. This recipe also calls for cranberries, which I think gives in a bit more holiday appeal.
It can be made with fresh, frozen or even dried cranberries. The topping mixture in this recipe uses the traditional rolled oats and brown sugar, but also gives the baker the option of adding chopped nuts – which I would toast to enhance their flavor – and/or coconut. I will be using both the nuts and the coconut in my version.
*Note that the nutrition information I give at the bottom does not include those additions to the main recipe.
What will I be doing to burn off some of these calories? I have decided on spending 20 minutes walking with Leslie Sansone.
I will be using her very old VHS tape: “Walk Away the Pounds with Leslie Sansone – The One Mile Walk.”
It’s a time commitment that I can make – 5 minutes to warm up, 20 minutes of walking.
At my current weight I will be burning 118 calories.
Looks like I will need to add a bit more exercise!
Happy Holidays Everyone!
Crimson Cranberry Crisp
Prep: 20 minutes Bake: 40 minutes Cool: 20 minutes Oven: 375°F.
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 cups sliced, peeled cooking apples
2 cups cranberries
1/2 cup quick-cooking or regular rolled oats
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg or ground ginger
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
2 tablespoons chopped nuts or coconut (optional)
Fat-free vanilla ice cream, frozen yogurt, or fat-free half-and-half (optional)
Step 1: In a small mixing bowl, combine granulated sugar and cinnamon. Place the apples and cranberries in an ungreased 1-1/2-quart casserole. Sprinkle sugar-cinnamon mixture over fruit. Toss gently to coat. Bake, covered, in a 375°F. oven for 25 minutes.
Step 2: For topping, in a small mixing bowl combine oats, brown sugar, flour, and nutmeg or ginger. With a pastry blender, cut in butter or margarine until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in nuts or coconut, if you like. Sprinkle topping over partially cooked fruit mixture.
Step 3: Return to oven and bake, uncovered, for 15 to 20 minutes more or until fruit is tender and topping is golden. Cool slightly. Serve warm with ice cream, frozen yogurt, or fat-free half-and-half, if you like.
Makes 6 servings.
NOTE: Can't find any fresh or frozen cranberries? You can substitute 1 cup of dried cranberries.
Nutrition Facts per serving: 191 calories, 6 g total fat, 15 mg cholesterol, 46 mg sodium, 34 g carbohydrates, 4 g dietary fiber, 1 g protein.
Monday, November 15, 2010
In Minnesota we have a fairly new program that is trying to get schools to eat healthier. It connects local producers and their food products with schools.
We were contacted several weeks ago by a school district 50 miles away from where we live. They were given a grant to help introduce their students to healthier eating - by promoting locally grown foods.
The only vegetable that we still had enough to offer them was potatoes.
My husband loves to grow potatoes, besides other vegetables. (We have a High Tunnel Greenhouse and are growing many vegetables in it - but potatoes must be grown out in a field.)
We grow the regular white and red potatoes, that I remember growing as a kid with my Irish grandfather. He used to grow over an acre just for our extended family.
Besides the old red and white varieties, we also grow many heirloom potatoes .
Rose colored on the outside with golden insides.
Deep purple skinned potatoes with equally dark purple insides.
Rose colored potatoes with pink interiors. Just to name a few.
Well, the school wanted just white and/or yellow potatoes for a harvest lunch that they will be preparing later in the month.
They asked us also to give a presentation on how to grow potatoes and to talk about them with the children. Since my husband is a Agricultural educator by profession, and he loves talking with children...this turned out to be a wonderful experience. There was a county health educator there also who spoke to the children about the history potatoes...including sweet potatoes and yams as well as the 'regular' potato. She did speak about healthier choices when eating potatoes. We talked about french fries and potato chips and that they are okay to eat ocassionally. She talked about nutrition, which was wonderful information for these children. I was glad to see this!
When we had finished our presentation, we spoke with the head cook. She told us how new this program was for their school. We told her we were so surprised when her county had contacted us...as we live so far from their school.
They had to go 50 miles to find farm produce! And they want to talk to us about next year.
We told them if they let us know in January or February we can grow whatever they would need.
(We are also during this with a food service and catering business at the college where my husband works. They too are trying to get more locally produced foods into the college food program.)
We also found out that this school district had qualified for this new program because they have over 50% of their students that fall under the poverty level.
I was just amazed. I had no idea that we were dealing with poverty issues like this in rural Minnesota.
This makes me think. I'm trying to lose weight because I have had too much access to food and have over eaten. Here are others living so close to me that may not have enough food to eat each day. This makes me reflect. This gives me a different kind of motivation to eat less. Motivation to share what I have with others.
It was truly an educational experience for me today, too!
Friday, November 12, 2010
I love Green Beans and Carrots! Did I really just say that?
Yes, since joining Spark People I have started to learn to LOVE my veggies!
Especially fresh, thin, long green beans.
Baby carrots steamed with a touch of honey.
While I always made a vegetable each night for my family, I seldom ate it myself. They’d ask if I wanted them to pass the mixed vegetables, and I’d say “maybe in a little bit, I’m eating my meat right now.” And I never did ask to have the vegetable dish passed. I just passed on it. I’d reach for a second or third slice of bread or roll. I very seldom would ‘eat my colors’ as my husband put it. Yes, my child had a healthier relationship with food than her mother did!
So tonight as I am preparing dinner (we call it supper here in the Midwest), I find myself getting EXCITED about the Haricot Vert (“fine French Green Beans") I am making from Trader Joe’s. My menu tonight includes: Grandma’s Meatloaf (an old family recipe that I slimmed down), Parmesan Mashed Potatoes ( a recipe I am trying from this site), Baked Acorn Squash & the Haricot Vert.
I never would have thought that I would enjoy eating vegetables the way I do now. I’m having fun trying new recipes, new herbs and seasonings. I am just amazed at the nice, filling portion size I can eat. One serving of the French Green Beans is ¾ cup for 25 calories. Guess what? I going to eat 2 servings of them tonight!
I love veggies! I DID just say that!
Sunday, November 07, 2010
Spark Friends…Please Share your Answers with Me!
I thought this might be a fun and interesting way to share positive, helpful information with each other.
I would like you to please answer any or all of the following questions. Then my Spark Friends that read this blog can read your replies and learn from you & about you, too!
I’ll post my answers below, too!
1. What’s a typical breakfast for you?
2. What’s a typical lunch for you?
3. What healthy snacks to you like eat?
4. If you snack, when do you snack? Morning, Afternoon, Evening?
5. What’s your favorite dish to have or prepare for Dinner?
6. What types of exercise do you enjoy doing? Are you a walker, a runner, etc.?
7. Do you do strength training? If so, what do you like to do and how often?
8. Do you take time for yourself each day?
9. How do you re-charge your ‘batteries?’
10. What is the most helpful tip you could offer a new Spark Person?
Here are my answers:
1. I usually have Multi-grain Cheerios, a cup of low fat or skim milk, and a cup of 100% orange juice. I know, I should be eating some additional protein at this meal, too.
2. I usually have 2 types of low fat cheese: string cheese and a disc of baby bell cheese, whole grain crackers, crisp bread or bread, 1 cup of V-8, some fruit either at lunch or later for a snack, Greek yogurt (I’ve been eating Dannon’s Greek Yogurt with honey, lately.)
3. I don’t eat snacks each day – but if I do I choose string cheese – if I haven’t had it at lunch or nuts. I sometimes have a Skinny Cow Ice Cream Sandwich at 8:00 p.m. – It’s planned. I sometimes have fruit…I’ve been on a dried fruit kick lately if I choose fruit.
4. If I snack it’s at 3:30 p.m. or 8:00 p.m.
5. I like grilled seafood or beef or pork with grilled or roasted vegetables.
6. I enjoy walking outdoors in good weather. I’ve been doing Leslie Sansone’s 3 Fast Miles or her 2 Fast Miles and a 1 Mile Walk Off the Pounds old tape. I really need to start a Strength Training program…a goal for the winter now!
7. No, I don’t strength train, but do use weights with one of my Leslie Sansone tapes.
8. I do take time for myself. I Spark, I pray, I take a hot bath, I walk.
9. I re-charge by doing those items listed under # 8.
10. Most helpful tip? I would encourage a new Spark Person to join a team that interests them and they will meet people and form relationships where they will always have encouragement and an ear to listen to them. That making Spark Friends is way more rewarding than I ever thought it would be!
Thanks for taking the time to read my blog today and thanks too if you are able to answer any or all of these questions.
I’d love to learn more about you, too!
Have a wonderful week, everyone!
Get An Email Alert Each Time WINFIELD28 Posts