Thursday, January 29, 2015

Super Bowl Soup: Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

Do you have a game plan for game day? Are you looking for a recipe for game day that is simple, tasty, and healthy? This is a quick and delicious recipe to feed a crowd on game day; it also happens to be healthy! This recipe is a touchdown!

This soup is one of my family’s favorite meals and is requested often when the weather is cool. This soup is one of my favorite recipes because of the ease of preparation, and it is a great way to eat your veggies. This recipe is filled with vegetables, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and lean protein. It is also delicious!

So gather the ingredients, toss them in the slow cooker, and you are ready for game day. Making this yummy soup as an easy play to win on game day.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tortilla Soup

1 pound chicken breast
2 cans 98% fat free cream of chicken soup
1 cup salsa
1 cup frozen corn
1 (15 oz) can black beans (rinsed and drained)
1/2 cup water
1 tsp cilantro, chopped
Kosher salt
Black pepper

Combine all ingredients in slow cooker on low for 3 ½ - 4 hours or until chicken is cooked through (165*F). Shred chicken. Add cilantro. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve with light sour cream, 2% (reduced fat) shredded cheese, avocado, and baked tortilla chips.


Prep time: 5-10 minutes

Cook time: 3 ½ - 4 hours (in a slow cooker)
I hope you enjoy this soup in this cold Winter weather. Have a "soup-er" Super Bowl with this yummy soup.  Let me know how it turns out. Comment on the blog below, or ask a question via Instagram and tag me @RDtipoftheday.

For more information, recipes, and tips and tricks for healthy eating, follow RDtipoftheday on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.

Friday, January 16, 2015

4 Tips for Making Pefect Cookies and Ginger Cookie Recipe

So, one of my New Year's goals is to try 50 new recipes in 2015. I started the New Year with lots of veggies in a vegetable soup. My second recipe is a little sweeter. I love sweets, and I believe they can be incorporated into one's diets in moderation.

I have never made ginger bread or ginger cookies. Can you believe that?!? I have used ginger in savory, Asian cooking but never in baking. I realized this travesty over the holidays when everyone was posting pictures of ginger bread houses and decorated gingerbread men cookies. I decided to try this recipe that uses powdered ginger and crystallized ginger. It was delicious! The cookies were moist, chewy, and packed a punch of spicy, sweet ginger.

This was my first time to cook with molasses as well. It was less sweet then I thought it would be but it was fantastic in the cookies. And, I got a chance to use my SilPlat non-stick cooking mat! It worked like a dream with this sticky dough.

Here's the recipe if you would like to give it a try.

Ginger Cookies
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 Tablespoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons finely chopped candied ginger (or ~1 ounce)
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1/3 cup molasses
1 egg at room temperature

Preheat oven to 350* F.
Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl: flour, sugar, ginger, baking soda, allspice, cinnamon, salt, and candied ginger.
Combine wet ingredients in a mixer: melted butter, molasses, and egg. Beat together until combine. Slowly add dry ingredients into wet mixture. Scoop 1 Tablespoon of dough onto a buttered baking sheet or a baking sheet lined with a non-stick mat (Example: SilPlat). Bake at 350* F for 7-9 minutes.

Tip #1: Spray your 1/3 measuring cup with non-stick cooking spray before measuring molasses. The non-stick spray . . . helps the molasses not stick to the spoon. It makes measuring sticky ingredients less messy.

Tip 2#: Use a small ice cream scoop to scoop cookie dough. This makes it easier to get similarly sized cookies that cook evenly.

Tip #3: I recommend making a batch of these cookies and freezing the dough in 2 batches. This helps with self-control and only having desserts in moderation. It also is handy to have dough already made for company or just quick cooking.

Tip #4: I defrost frozen cookie dough for 1 day in the fridge before baking.

This recipe was adapted from a Giada DeLaurentiis' recipe for double ginger cookies. I hope you enjoy! Please let me know if there are any ingredients or dishes you want me to try in the new feature #NewYearNewRecipes #NYNR #50RDrecipes

For more recipes and tips and tricks for healthy eating, follow RDtipoftheday on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.

Friday, January 9, 2015

New Year New Recipes: Winter Vegetable Soup

So, one of my New Year's goals is to try 50 new recipes in 2015. I decided to start the New Year with lots of veggies. I tried a winter vegetable soup and used my new veggie peeler and mandolin to make the process faster. It also has homemade croutons, which were so good!

Here's the cast of characters (minus the cucumber, shallot, and jalepeno). I also tried a new food, parsnips. They look like white carrots, but they taste and smell more herbaceous than carrot-y. Does that make sense? Parsnips are a related to carrots and are great source of fiber, anti-oxidants, and vitamins. Because you are making soup, you do not lose any of the water-soluble vitamins.

Here's the recipe if you would like to try it.

Winter Vegetable Soup
32 ounces low sodium chicken stock
1/2 pound carrots
1/2 pound parsnips
1 large sweet potato
1 pound butternut squash
3 Tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper

Wash all produce. Peel and slice. Toss with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast at 425* F for 25-35 minutes or until fork tender. Puree vegetables with stock in batches until smooth. Add to a large pot. Then, cook for 20 minutes until heated through. Top with croutons and olive oil. Enjoy!

This recipe was based on Ina Garten's Roasted Winter Vegetable Soup. I thought this recipe was a good way to start the year, and it also got my husband's stamp of approval. Please let me know if there are any ingredients or dishes you want me to try in the new feature #NewYearNewRecipes #NYNR #50RDrecipes

For more recipes and tips and tricks for healthy eating, follow RDtipoftheday on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.

Friday, January 2, 2015

The Beginning of a New Year: 2015

As I get, older, it feels like time moves more quickly. It is the start of a New Year, and I feel as if Christmas was yesterday and Thanksgiving was merely the week before.

Christmas is a season of giving. This year, I feel blessed: good healthy, warm home, and time with family and friends. Some of our friends are now in different states and cities, so I am thankful for phones and good old fashioned snail mail. I love getting mail and around the holidays I feel remember if that makes since. I've also received some birthday and Christmas presents that make me excited for this new year.

I feel likes my world is full of people that are setting new year, new goals . . . both on blogs and my "real world." I know the seemingly pessimistic statistics of how long goals last. Call me an optimist, but I love a fresh start and am energized by those who are brave enough to challenge themselves, try new things, and work to be the best they can be.

So, here are the goals I have for 2015:

1) Try 50 new recipes
Notice, I said 'try" not "make successfully." Hahaha. I love the bake, but I am hoping to find some new savory meals to enjoy. Mostly of my Christmas and birthday presents support this goal - from new cookbooks to new tools. I am better prepared and ready to try new things. P.s. I may need some taste testers. Are there any volunteers??

2) Exercise consistently
With all that baking and cooking, I'll need some balance to be healthy. I'm hoping to find some new aerobic classes in our new town. Classes motivated me to move more, challenge myself, and are great for stress relief.

3) Find a creative outlet
I've noticed my favorite parts of my job are when I get to be more creative: making handouts, creating interactive education boards, food styling, and recipe development. I am hoping to find more creative outlets in my personal and professional life.

I hope this inspired you to reflect on 2014 and consider what you want to accomplish in 2015. So, try new things, challenge yourself, and be the best you can be. Here's to a Happy . . . and Healthy New Year!

For more tips and tricks for healthy eating, follow RDtipoftheday on Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter.