Friday, April 17, 2009

Its a Wrap!

Greek Feta Tortilla Sandwich Wrap

A recipe for a healthy vegetarian sandwich wrap, inspired by the flavors of Greek cooking, including feta cheese, and wrapped up in a whole wheat flour tortilla. This Greek vegetarian sandwich wrap recipe makes a great lunch or snack.

•4 10-inch whole wheat tortillas
•3/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled
•approx 16 cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
•10 black olives, sliced
•1/2 red onion, sliced thin
•1 small yellow squash, sliced
•1 cucumber, diced
•2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
•1 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
•1 clove garlic, minced
•2 tsp olive oil
•1/4 tsp salt
•1/4 tsp pepper


In a medium bowl, combine all of the ingredients except for the tortillas. Let stand for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Drain off liquid and divide salad mixture among the tortillas. Fold bottom of tortilla partially over filling and then roll up.

Chicken Salad Wraps

Guaranteed crowd-pleasers, these wraps are perfect for leftover grilled chicken. The distinctive salty flavor from the fish sauce is balanced by fresh mint and lemon juice.

Servings: 4 servings
Total Time: 40 minutes
Ease of Preparation: Easy
Health: High Fiber, Low Sat Fat, High Calcium, High Potassium, Heart Healthy


Chicken Salad Wraps
1/2 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup fish sauce (see Ingredient note)
1/4 cup sugar
2 cloves garlic , minced
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
8 6-inch flour tortillas
4 cups shredded romaine lettuce
3 cups shredded cooked chicken (12 ounces)
1 large ripe tomato , cut into thin wedges
1 cup grated carrots (2 medium)
2/3 cup chopped scallions (1 bunch)
2/3 cup slivered fresh mint


1: Whisk lemon juice, fish sauce, sugar, garlic and crushed red pepper in a small bowl until sugar is dissolved.

2: Preheat oven to 325° F. Wrap tortillas in foil and heat in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes, until softened and heated through. Keep warm.

3: Combine lettuce, chicken, tomato, carrots, scallions and mint in a large bowl. Add 1/3 cup of the dressing; toss to coat.

4: Set out the chicken mixture, tortillas and the remaining dressing for diners to assemble wraps at the table. Serve immediately.

Ingredient note: A pungent, soy sauce-like condiment used throughout Southeast Asia, fish sauce is made from fermented, salted fish. Available in large supermarkets and in Asian markets. To warm tortillas in a microwave, stack between two damp paper towels; microwave on high for 30 to 60 seconds, or until heated through.

Trail Mix Breakfast Wraps

Yields 8 wraps and 1 cup sauce.

1/4 cup chopped almonds
1 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup banana chips
2 teaspoons honey
1 cup Shredded Wheat cereal, broken into pieces
2 tablespoons apricot preserves
2 (10- or 11-inch) flour tortillas

Heat oven to 350 degrees F.

Spread the almonds on a baking sheet. Bake until they become aromatic and appear shiny from the oils being released, about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Combine the almonds, yogurt, apricots, banana chips and honey. Mix well. Fold in the Shredded Wheat.

Warm the tortillas in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, about 15 seconds on each side. Tortillas also can be microwaved on HIGH for 10 or 15 seconds, or wrapped in aluminum foil and heated in the oven at 350 degrees F for 3 to 5 minutes.

Divide the apricot preserves among the tortillas and spread evenly over each tortilla, leaving at least a 1-inch border around the edge.

Divide the cereal mixture and spread in a 2 x 5-inch rectangle on the bottom half of each tortilla.

Fold the right and left edges of the tortilla over the filling, toward the center. Fold the bottom edge of the tortilla toward the center and gently roll until the tortilla is completely wrapped around the filling.

Serve immediately.

Blueberry Dessert Wraps

3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cups frozen or fresh blueberries, divided
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 (7-inch) flour tortillas
2 tablespoons butter

In a small saucepan combine sugar and cornstarch; stir in orange juice. Cook and stir over medium heat until sauce is clear and thickened, about 5 minutes; stir in 1 cup blueberries; return to a boil; boil and stir for 1 minute.

In a mixing bowl beat cream cheese until light. Add confectioners' sugar and vanilla extract; beat until smooth and creamy. Spread each tortilla with about 2 tablespoons of the cheese mixture. Place about 6 frozen blueberries across the center of each tortilla. Roll jellyroll-style.

In a medium skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat; place half of the wraps seam side down in skillet and cook turning occasionally until evenly browned, about 3 minutes. Repeat with remaining butter and wraps. Serve topped with hot blueberry sauce.

Vegetarian wraps

425 g can lentils, drained
2 carrots, grated
1 stick celery, finely chopped
4 spring onions, finely chopped
1 red capsicum, finely chopped
1/2 cup light sour cream

2 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1/3 cup wholemeal flour
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1. Beat eggs lightly with milk.
2. Fold in sifted flour and rest mixture for 10 minutes. Beat again before using.
3. Heat oil in frying pan on medium heat and add 1 teaspoon of oil.
4. Pour 2 tablespoons of crepe mixture into fry pan.
5. Cook crepes until lightly brown turn and cook 1 minute on other side.
6. Turn over and Rrepeat procedure with remaining mixture. Remove from heat.Stack crepes on a plate.
7. Combine capsicum, lentils, carrot, celery, spring onions and sour cream in a large bowl.
8. Roll 1 teaspoon mixture in each a crepe. Cut each crepe in half.

Notes: For softer or smoother filling, vegetables may be lightly steamed, then cooled before mixing with sour cream. Alternatively all filling ingredients may be blended.

Mixed Baby Greens and Balsamic Vinaigrette Wrap

This simple vegetarian salad wrap is addictive! It is full of nutrients and low calorie, especially if you do not include cheese.

Prep time: 5 minutes; Total time: 5 minutes


•1 whole wheat tortilla
•1 large pinch broccoli sprouts
•1 handful herb salad
•1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
•Balsamic vinegar
•1 tomato (optional)
•2 slices fresh mozzerella (optional)

Herb salads can be purchased in a bag at the store, or you can make your own. They consist of mixed baby greens and fresh herbs like parsley, dill, and cilantro.

Pile all ingredients on your tortilla and sprinkle with balsamic vingar and olive oil. Then fold your tortilla into a wrap. Eat this over a plate and use any balsamic vinegar that drips out the bottom as dipping sauce.

Omit the tortilla to turn this simple vegetarian recipe into a delicious salad.

Look on the label of your tortillas before buying to make sure they do not contain any trans fats.

Tempeh Wasabi Wrap

Prep time: 15 min; Total time: 15 min


Required ingredients:

•Whole wheat tortilla
•1/4 package tempeh
•1/4 c. plain yogurt (or 2 tbsp veganaise)
•1 tsp wasabi
•1 tsp stone ground mustard
•1 rib celery, minced
•1/4 c. pineapple, minced

Optional ingredients:

•1/2 tsp soy sauce
•1/2 tsp rice vinegar
•Bean sprouts
•Carrot, grated
•Red onion, diced
•Purple cabbage

Steam the tempeh for 10 minutes, then dice into 1/8" pieces. Dice the celery, pineapple, and onions.

In a small bown, combine yogurt or veganaise, stone ground mustard, wasabi, soy sauce, and/or rice vinegar. Add the tempeh, celery, pineapple, and onions to the bowl with the yogurt mix.

Place your tortilla on a plate. Add the tempeh mixture and any additional vegetables you wish to include (bean sprouts, carrots, purple cabbage). Roll your tortilla into a wrap and enjoy!

To skip the Japanese flair, make your wrap with minced kosher dill pickles instead of pineapple and wasabi.

You don't have to eat this as a wrap - you can also enjoy it as a salad or as a sandwich on toasted bread.

Fruits of Summer Wrap

Here's a simple vegetarian wrap recipe using dates, jicama, corn, and fresh greens. It tastes bright, crisp, fresh, and just a little bit sweet. Perfect for a summer's day.

Prep time: 10 min; Total time: 10 min


•1 whole wheat tortilla
•1-2 tbsp. sweet corn, off the cob
•1-2 tbsp. dried dates
•A few cherry or grape tomatoes, diced
•Large handful mixed baby greens
•1-2 tbsp. your favorite fruity vinaigrette
•1-2 tbsp. jicama, julienne (optional)
•2-3 strawberries, sliced (optional)
•1-2 tbsp. sunflower seeds (optional)
•1-2 slices havarti cheese (optional)

Assemble all ingredients on top of the tortilla. Fold in the sides and then roll the tortilla into a wrap.

On lazy days, don't bother rolling this into a wrap - just eat it as a salad!

If you don't have havarti cheese, try using muenster, gouda, edam, or parmesan instead.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Tasty and Healthy Salads

Rainbow Chopped Salad

Double this fresh and colorful salad and top each portion with 3 ounces grilled chicken breast for a quick main dish salad.

Makes 4 servings, generous 1 cup each

ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes


1 1/2 cups chopped bell peppers
1 1/2 cups chopped broccoli florets
1 cup shredded carrots
1/2 cup diced radishes
1/2 cup Orange-Oregano Dressing or Creamy Dill Ranch Dressing (recipes follow)
1 tablespoon minced red onion

Place bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, radishes, dressing and onion in a medium bowl. Toss to coat. Refrigerate until ready to serve

Orange-Oregano Dressing

What this dressing lacks in calories and fat it makes up for in big, bold orange flavor and herbal oregano notes.

Makes about 1 cup

ACTIVE TIME: 5 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 5 minutes


1/2 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
1/2 cup orange juice, preferably freshly squeezed
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano or 3/4 teaspoon dried
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Place all ingredients in a jar. Cover and shake to combine.

Creamy Dill Ranch Dressing

Cottage cheese blended in a food processor to a creamy texture, while not traditional in Ranch dressing, delivers unbelievable richness with minimal calories and fat.

Makes 1 1/4 cups

ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes


1 small shallot, peeled
3/4 cup nonfat cottage cheese
1/4 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 tablespoons buttermilk powder (see Note)
2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar
1/4 cup nonfat milk
1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

With the food processor running, add shallot through the feed tube and process until finely chopped. Add cottage cheese, mayonnaise, buttermilk powder and vinegar. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides as necessary, about 3 minutes. Pour in milk while the processor is running. Scrape down the sides, add dill, salt and pepper and process until combined.

Roasted Garlic Potato Salad

Though it tastes rich and creamy, this potato salad is made with nonfat yogurt and reduced-fat mayonnaise, making it much lower in fat than a traditional potato salad. Roasted garlic adds a rich dimension.

Makes 10 servings, 1 cup each

ACTIVE TIME: 1 1/4 hours

TOTAL TIME: 2 hours


2 large heads garlic
3 pounds medium red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 teaspoon salt, divided
1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
1/3 cup reduced-fat mayonnaise
1/3 cup nonfat plain yogurt
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
Freshly ground pepper to taste
4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled (see Tip)
1 cup chopped celery
3/4 cup chopped California Ripe Olives
1 4-ounce jar sliced pimientos, rinsed
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley, plus sprigs for garnish
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives or scallion greens, plus more for garnish
Paprika for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
2. Rub off excess papery skin from the garlic heads without separating cloves. Slice the tips off each head, exposing the cloves. Place garlic heads on a square of aluminum foil, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon water and pinch edges of foil together to make a package. Roast until garlic flesh is very soft, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Unwrap garlic and let cool slightly.
3. Meanwhile, place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Season with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil. Cook, covered, over medium heat until potatoes are tender, 7 to 9 minutes. Drain well; transfer to a large bowl. Toss gently with the vinegar and let cool.
4. When garlic is cool enough to handle, squeeze the pulp into a food processor or blender. Add mayonnaise, yogurt, mustard, 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper; blend until smooth.
5. Add the dressing to the potatoes and toss to coat. Finely chop 3 eggs and add to the potatoes along with the celery, olives, pimientos, parsley and chopped chives (or scallion greens). Stir gently to mix. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper. Transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle with the paprika. Slice the remaining egg and arrange the slices decoratively on top. Garnish with more chives and/or parsley sprigs.

TIP: Tip: To hard-boil eggs: Place eggs in a single layer in a saucepan; cover with water. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and cook at the barest simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat, pour out hot water and run a constant stream of cold water over the eggs until completely cooled.

Shrimp Cobb Salad

Cooked peeled shrimp is perfect for quick and healthy meals--here we use it in place of chicken in our simplified Cobb Salad.

Makes 1 serving

ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes


3 cups chopped hearts of romaine
5 grape or cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup sliced cucumber
1 hard-boiled egg, sliced (see Tip)
5 cooked peeled shrimp (31-40 per pound)
Freshly ground pepper to taste
2 tablespoons light blue cheese dressing

Combine lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, egg and shrimp in a bowl. Season with pepper. Toss with dressing and serve.

Greek Tofu Salad

This quick tofu salad is flavored with feta, onion, olives and lemon. Make it a meal: Spoon the salad into toasted whole-wheat pitas and add lettuce leaves.

Makes 4 servings, 1 cup each

ACTIVE TIME: 15 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 35 minutes


1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/4 cup chopped red onion or scallion
12 Kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
8 ounces firm tofu, drained and crumbled (1 cup)
Salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
1 ripe tomato, coarsely chopped
1 small cucumber, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

1. Stir together feta, onion (or scallion), olives, lemon juice, oil and oregano in a medium bowl. Add tofu and mash together with a fork. Season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
2. Add tomato, cucumber and parsley to tofu mixture. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

Lemony Carrot Salad

Tangy lemon and fresh dill make a bright dressing for shredded carrots.

Makes 2 servings

ACTIVE TIME: 10 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 10 minutes


1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 small clove garlic, minced
1/8 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste
1 cup shredded carrots
1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
1 tablespoon chopped scallion

Whisk lemon juice, oil, garlic, salt and pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Add carrots, dill and scallion; toss to coat.

MAKE AHEAD TIP: Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Guilt FREE Creamy Desserts

Experience the pleasure of rich desserts without the guilt.

Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse
Chocolate Hazelnut Mousse

Fluffy and rich, mousse is a classic make-ahead dessert. Serve as a satisfying midday snack or an after-dinner indulgence.

The custard base will be thick, but whipped topping is folded in to give it the classic airy texture of a mousse. Because this dessert needs time to chill, it is a terrific make-ahead option.

6 servings (serving size: about 2/3 cup mousse and 1 teaspoon hazelnuts)

1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
2 cups 2% reduced-fat milk
1/4 cup Frangelico (hazelnut-flavored liqueur)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 cups frozen fat-free whipped topping, thawed
2 tablespoons chopped hazelnuts, toasted

Combine the sugar, cocoa, cornstarch, salt, and eggs in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk.

Heat milk over medium-high heat in a small, heavy saucepan to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Gradually add hot milk to sugar mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Place the milk mixture in pan, and cook over medium heat until very thick and bubbly (about 5 minutes), stirring constantly. Spoon mixture into a medium bowl, and add liqueur, vanilla, and chocolate, stirring until chocolate melts. Place bowl in a large ice-filled bowl for 15 minutes or until mixture is cool, stirring occasionally.

Remove bowl from ice. Gently fold in one-third of whipped topping. Fold in remaining topping. Cover and chill at least 3 hours. Sprinkle with hazelnuts.

Mango-Passion Fruit Gelato
Mango-Passion Fruit Gelato

Mango adds a fun tropical punch to this cold treat, but feel free to substitute fresh or frozen peaches if you prefer.

1 cup sugar
1 cup water
3 cups chopped peeled mango (about 2 mangoes)
2 cups passion fruit nectar
1 1/2 cups half-and-half

Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Place sugar mixture and mango in a blender; process until smooth. Pour into a large bowl; cool completely. Stir in the nectar and half-and-half.

Pour mango mixture into the freezer can of an ice-cream freezer; freeze according to manufacturer's instructions.

Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie
Cherries Jubilee Ice Cream Pie

The filling for this ice cream pie combines vanilla ice cream with a cherry-brandy puree. Top with cherry-brandy sauce for an impressive finish.

All the flavors of the classic summertime dessert combine in this easy-to-prepare pie. Since the cherries are cooked, frozen ones work just fine--and they save you the trouble of pitting fresh ones.

8 servings (serving size: 1 pie wedge and 3 tablespoons sauce)

1/3 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons brandy
1 (12-ounce) package frozen pitted dark sweet cherries
2 tablespoons butter, melted
2 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 9 cookie sheets)
4 cups vanilla low-fat ice cream, softened

Preheat oven to 375°.

Combine first 5 ingredients in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil; cook 2 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly. Cool completely.

Combine butter and honey in a medium bowl. Add graham cracker crumbs, stirring to blend. Press mixture into bottom and up sides of a 9-inch pie plate. Bake at 375° for 8 minutes. Cool completely.

Place 1/2 cup cooled cherry mixture in a food processor; process until smooth. Place the remaining cherry mixture in an airtight container; cover and chill.

Place softened ice cream in a large bowl, and beat with a mixer at medium speed until smooth. Add pureed cherry mixture, and gently fold in to achieve a swirl pattern. Spoon mixture into the cooled crust. Cover and freeze 4 hours or until firm. Top with reserved cherry sauce just before serving.

Chocolate Parfaits
Chocolate Parfaits

Use sugar-free, instant chocolate pudding instead of regular for a low-sugar filling that's still rich and creamy.

Prep: 20 min., Chill: 1 hr. We tried using both sugar-free instant and regular pudding mixes. To our surprise, we preferred the flavor of the sugar-free.

Makes 6 servings

1 (1.4-oz.) package fat-free, sugar-free chocolate instant pudding mix
2 cups 1% low-fat milk
1/2 cup light sour cream
1 (8-oz.) container fat-free frozen whipped topping, thawed and divided
3/4 cup chocolate graham cracker crumbs (4 cracker sheets)
1 tablespoon freshly grated chocolate

1. Whisk together first 3 ingredients in a bowl until blended and smooth. Fold in 1 1/2 cups whipped topping.

2. Spoon 1 Tbsp. crumbs into each of 6 (4-oz.) glasses, and top with 1/3 cup pudding mixture. Repeat layers with remaining crumbs and pudding mixture. Top each parfait evenly with remaining whipped topping and grated chocolate. Cover and chill at least 1 hour.

Caramel Custard
Caramel Custard
Boost your calcium intake with a serving of dairy-packed custard

Prep: 5 min., Cook: 5 min., Stand: 5 min., Bake: 1 hr., Chill: 3 hrs. The hot water bath helps insulate the custard from the direct heat of the oven and provides a more gentle environment for even baking.

Makes 10 servings

1/2 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1 large egg
1 (14-oz.) can fat-free sweetened condensed milk
1 (12-oz.) can evaporated fat-free milk
3 ounces 1/3-less-fat cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1. Cook sugar in an 8-inch round cake pan (with 2-inch sides) over medium heat, shaking pan occasionally, 5 minutes or until sugar melts and turns light golden brown. Remove pan from heat, and let stand 5 minutes. (Sugar will harden.)

2. Process egg yolks and next 5 ingredients in a blender until smooth. Pour mixture over caramelized sugar in pan. Cover mixture with aluminum foil.

3. Place cake pan in a broiler pan. Add hot water (150°) to pan to a depth of 2/3 inch.

4. Bake at 350° for 1 hour or until a knife inserted in center of custard comes out clean. Remove cake pan from water bath; cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and chill at least 3 hours.

5. Run a knife around edge of pan to loosen; invert onto a serving plate.

Tip: The 8-oz. blocks of 1/3-less-fat cream cheese have marks on the packaging noting 1 oz. measurements. By using these marks, it is easy to measure the 3 oz. of cream cheese that you need for this recipe.

Banana-Caramel Custard: Prepare custard recipe as directed, adding 1 medium-size ripe banana to egg yolk mixture in blender.