Monday, January 31, 2011

SOFRITO - Spice Up Your Food

This basically vegetable mix is a great way to add a ton of flavor to your food. Many of us are aware of the trinity (onion, celery, and bell pepper) but this Caribbean version gives a good zip and base of flavor when used to start soups, rice, or meats. The two great things about this recipe are it has 0 points plus and it makes a lot. I keep it in 1/2 cup portions frozen in little snack bags for easy access in the freezer.

SOFRITO

2 medium onions
4 cubanelle peppers
15 - 20 garlic cloves, minced
1 - 2 serrano peppers
1 large bunch of cilantro
4 plum tomatoes
1 red bell pepper

Clean everything. Drop everything into a food processor. Completely puree. Use what you need and freeze the rest.

About 4 cups

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Slow Cooker Oatmeal

A few weeks ago Weight Watchers had a recipe for slow cooker (pumpkin) oatmeal. I was a bit sceptical because it called for 1 & 1/2 cups (only) of steal cut oats (I use old fashion). How could this be enough for 8 servings and for 5 pointsplus each? But some of my members claimed that they really liked steal cut and half the amount of steal cut is the same as old fashion oats.
I gave it a try. It was so good I tried it several more times!

SLOW COOKER OATMEAL - you can choose the flavor you want to make

6 cups water
3 cups apple or pumpkin or banana or ?, diced into 1/2 inch cubes
1 1/2 cups steal cut oats
1/2 cup honey
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
(other flavorings can be use - vanilla, orange or lemon zest, ginger)

Put all into your 3 - 6 quart slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours. Stir - it will look watery until you stir and scrape up any oats stuck to bottom.

You can eat at this point (1 cup per serving), but I pour into a 9 x 13 baking dish and I chill. Then I cut into 8 servings. When I want to have it for breakfast I just heat in a covered bowl in the microwave for 3 - 4 minutes.
This makes a quick hot breakfast!

Just 5 PointsPlus for a satisfying portion!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Taco Soup

Time to bring back the taco soup! It is so easy and good it is ridiculous. Just a package of taco seasoning and 7 cans and you have a soup for a crowd or a batch in your frig for a week of good eating. If you shop at ALDI or get the cans on sale it is an extreme bargain too. You just have to watch the sodium content.

1 large onion, chopped
cooking spray
1 pkg of taco seasoning
2 cups whole kernel corn (or 1 can)
1 can fat free chicken broth
1 can black beans, undrained
1 can great northern beans, undrained
1 can fat free refried beans
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can spicy season tomatoes

Sauté the onion until soft in a large pot sprayed with non stick cooking spray. Add the other ingredients to pot and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes.

If you want to spice it up (and I always do) add one or two chopped chipotle peppers in adobo sauce - adds smoke and heat!

If you have a one cup serving this is 3 PointsPlus. It is especially good on a baked potato for a quick filling meal.