Monthly Archives: May 2012

Southwestern Omelet

I must start out with a blog update.  For those of you who have been following my blog (thank you) you probably noticed that I did not post a recipe or food related article last week.  I recently decided to go back to school (yikes!) part time to earn a Master’s degree in Marriage and Family Therapy.  This is something that I have wanted to do since completing my Master’s degree in Psychology many years ago.  So, in addition to working full time, chasing a toddler and blogging I am now a graduate student as well.  Last week got a bit crazy when I had a paper due.   Academics had to prevail and recipe writing was put on hold.  I really hope that school will not interfere with blogging too much as this has become such a passion of mine!

This omelet is an easy and delicious recipe that is perfect for breakfast, lunch, brunch or dinner.  I have cut down on the calories and fat by using a combination of whole eggs and egg whites (as I do with all my egg recipes) and using low-fat cheese and sour cream.  Another great thing about this recipe is that it can be halved to make for one or just as easily doubled or tripled to make it for more people.

The hot sauce is optional and does not really add much heat.  It just adds a really nice background flavor.  If you would like it spicy you can always add more.  If you are skeptical you can just leave it out.  The avocado slices are optional but I really do recommend it!

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cook Time:  10 Minutes

Yield: 2 servings

2 whole eggs and 2 egg whites

1 teaspoon olive oil

1 tablespoon of water

1 tablespoon cilantro plus a bit more for garnish, finely chopped

2-3 dashes of hot sauce – I like Frank’s (optional)

¼ cup red pepper, small dice

2 scallions, diced

¼ cup low-fat shredded cheddar or pepper jack cheese

½ haas avocado, cut into strips (optional)

2 tablespoons low-fat sour cream (optional)

Kosher salt

Ground black pepper

Heat the olive oil in an 8 inch skillet over medium heat.  Place the peppers and scallions into the pan with a pinch of salt and sauté until the vegetables begin to soften.

While the vegetables are cooking beat the eggs with one tablespoon of cilantro, hot sauce, salt, pepper and one tablespoon of water.

Once the vegetables have softened add the egg/cilantro mixture to the pan.  Lower the heat to medium-low.  Cook the eggs until the edges start to firm up.  Loosen the edges of the eggs with a rubber spatula and tilt the skillet to let the uncooked egg run underneath.  Once the bottom is firm carefully place the spatula under the egg and flip the omelet.  If you do not think the egg will flip easily you can place the eggs under the broiler until the top is firm (about 3 to 5 minutes).  This is my trick to perfect omelets every time!

Sprinkle the cheese onto half of the egg.  Flip the egg on top of itself to fold in half.  Cut the omelet in half and serve with avocado slices, a dollop of sour cream and sprinkle with cilantro.


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Filed under Breakfast, Eggs

Arugula, Feta, Apple and Walnut Salad

This salad is a mixture of so many tastes and textures it is like a party in your mouth! I love combining different types of flavors in my cookery as it makes every bite interesting.  In this recipe you have spicy arugula, salty feta, sweet cranberries, tart apple, and the sweet and sour dressing.  As for the textures you have the crisp apple, creamy feta, chewy dried cranberries and crunchy walnuts.    Eating is an experience for all of your senses and this recipe is a sensory delight.  For a salad you would be surprised by its depth of flavor.  It is also just really delicious!

Arugula is one of my all time favorite greens.  I use it often in salads even cook with it in my Arugula and Feta Omelet.  It is rich in vitamin C and low in calories.  I personally think the best part is its spicy flavor.  Nowadays it is easy to find pre-washed packages of arugula to make a quick, easy and tasty salads.  Of course you do not have to buy the arugula that is already washed.  I just think that it is a HUGE time saver to have that step already done for you.  One step I do not recommend skipping is toasting the walnuts.  It only takes a few minutes and trust me when I tell you, IT IS WELL WORTH IT.

This salad can be a lovely main meal or first course.  I have made this for guests and have always gotten rave reviews.  The dressing is one that I use for many salads and not just this one.  It is that good.

Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 0 Minutes
Yield: 4 – 8 servings

1 (5 ounce) bag of pre-washed baby arugula (preferably organic)
½ cup chopped walnuts
1 apple (whatever kind you like, I use Gala or McIntosh for this recipe), thinly sliced
¼ cup dried cranberries
¾ cup crumbled feta cheese

For the dressing:
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons honey
2 – 3 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper


Toast the walnuts in a dry skillet over low heat until fragrant and lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes.

In a large bowl add the arugula, dried cranberries, feta, sliced apples and cooled walnuts.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the vinegar, honey, salt and pepper. Add the oil in a slow stream, whisking until well combined.

Toss the dressing with the salad right before serving.


Filed under Salads, Vegetarian

Super Size Me

I saw Super Size Me about five or six years ago.  It got a lot of press back in 2004 when it was released.  I think it is a great documentary that explores the effects of the fast food industry on the American diet and its corporate influence.  The movie was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature.

For purposes of the documentary, the film maker Morgan Spurlock, went on a strict fast food diet for 30 days.  He ate three meals a day at McDonlad’s and tried every item on their menu at least once.  If he was offered the “super-size” option for his meal he was required to take it.  At the beginning of the experiment he was checked out by physicians and was told he was in good physical shape.  No red flags or health concerns at all.

During the course of the 30 days, you as the viewer see the deterioration of Morgan’s physical and mental well being.   It was almost painful to watch the healthy guy from the beginning of the movie go through the process as you could see how it was negatively affecting him.  The doctors who were monitoring him as well as his vegan girlfriend (go figure) all urged him to stop the experiment.  He did stop at the end of the month.  At that point he had gained almost 25 pounds, had an unhealthy rise in his cholesterol and experienced psychological and sexual side effects.  In the end it took him 14 months to loose the weight that he gained in those 30 days.

I found the film to be insightful and quite eye opening. I cannot say I was ever a great fan of fast food, but after watching this movie anyone would think twice about going through that drive through again.

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Filed under Articles, Movie Reviews

Roasted Salmon With Dill Lemon Sauce

I think most people will agree that salmon is probably the most versatile fish.  A lot of people who do not like fish will eat salmon.  It is the most common fish found on restaurant menus. It is not “fishy,” has a substantial texture and a rich taste.  It is also a great canvas for any sauce or marinade.

The great thing about this recipe is that it can be easily made for 2 or 20.  This is a dish I often make just for my husband and myself.  I have also, on more than one occasion, made this for a large crowd.  I made it for my sister’s engagement party and it was a hit!  When making this for a party I roast a whole side of salmon and double the sauce recipe.  It is impressive looking and tastes delicious and is really easy!

Some people like to keep the skin on their salmon. If you prefer to keep the skin then go ahead and leave it on.  I personally do not like it so I ask my fish monger to remove it for me after it has been weighed.

This sauce is great on salmon, but also terrific on any other type of fish.  It is also really good over salad greens and as a dip for veggies.  It is a nice recipe to keep in your back pocket 🙂

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cook Time:  15 to 20 Minutes

Yield: 3 to 4 servings

1 ½ to 2 pounds center cut salmon

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large lemon, ½ sliced and ½ zested ( about 1 teaspoon zest)

Juice of 1 lemon

8 oz reduced fat sour cream

1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill

1 clove finely minced garlic (optional)

2 tablespoons milk (whatever kind you have at home)

2 tablespoons reduced fat mayonnaise

Kosher salt

Ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F

Place the salmon in a baking dish. It is helpful to first spray the dish with olive oil to prevent sticking. In a separate bowl mix the olive oil, juice of half a lemon and minced garlic. Brush onto the salmon and sprinkle with salt and fresh cracked pepper. Place lemon slices on top of the fish.

Cook the salmon on the middle oven rack until just cooked through, about 15 to 20 minutes, depending on thickness.  You may need to increase the time if cooking a larger piece of fish.

While the fish is cooking prepare the sauce.  Place the lemon zest in a bowl and stir in the sour cream, milk, juice of half a lemon, mayonnaise, dill, salt and pepper.  Mix until you have a sauce like consistency.  If the sauce is too thick you can thin it out with more milk.

Serve with lemon slices and sauce.

Suggested Pampered Chef Tools:

  • ·         Citrus Press or Lemon juicer
  • ·         Garlic Press
  • ·         Silicone basting brush
  • ·         Entertaining platter


Filed under Fish, Pareve