Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Berry Breakfast Bake

Breakfast is essential in healthy eating; I strive to eat within the first hour of being up to help me manage my eating throughout the day. Due to crazy schedules, breakfast is often skipped.  This breakfast bake can be made ahead and eaten during the week.  

I loved making this dish Saturday evening.  My family enjoyed a sit down, warm breakfast on Sunday.  The leftovers were great on Monday and Tuesday morning.  This is a great "what do I have sitting around" dish.  I happened to have some Craisins and also fresh cranberries; I added them.  I added the chia seeds to the original recipe; if I'd had any flax seed, I would have added that too.  

My photo doesn't show ripe bananas because I didn't have any.  What I did have was a quart freezer bag of mashed bananas. We buy lots of bananas, but occasionally they ALL hit the overripe state.  We peel and throw them in a bag; they are great for smoothies, banana bread, or casseroles like this.  There is no need to throw away overripe bananas or force feed yourself four in one day anymore. 

  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped (divided)
  • 1/2 t baking powder
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 cup natural maple syrup
  • 1 cup almond milk (or skim)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 2 T unrefined coconut oil (or unsalted butter)
  • 1 t vanilla extract
  • 3 ripe bananas, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup mixed berries, frozen or fresh (divided)
  • 3 T chia seeds
  • 1/2 cup cranberries

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  2. Lightly grease a 9 x 11 baking dish
  3. In a medium mixing bowl, mix dry ingredients (use half of the walnuts).  In another bowl, combine milk, egg, syrup, vanilla, and coconut oil. 
  4. Spread banana slices on bottom of baking dish. Top with half of the berries. Sprinkle dry oat mixture over fruit layer. Pour liquid ingredients evenly over oats. 
  5. Sprinkle remaining walnuts and berries on top.   Bake 35-40 minutes or until top is browned and oats have set. Allow to cool. 

DIFFICULTY- medium (it has a lot of ingredients)
TIME: 15 minute prep; 40 minutes baking time
SOURCE:  adapted from Schall Fitness

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Citrus-Herb Marinated Chicken

I may never have the homes that appear in Better Homes and Gardens, but I can surely enjoy looking at them.  And when it comes to the food, often I think, "I could do that!"  And sometimes I do.  This is a wonderful, flavorful, easy chicken dish from the October 2014 issue.

I go on chicken kicks and then I get kind of tired of it at times, but during those times it is usually a nice, flavorful dish that gets me out of the rut.  This is one of those dishes.  I love all of the herbs and the citrus in the marinade.  Personally, I am a big fan of grilling this chicken, but in the winter months sometimes the broiler just has to do!

  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
  • 1/3 c lemon juice or orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp. finely chopped shallot
  • 1 Tbsp. honey
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. snipped fresh thyme or 1 tsp. dried thyme, crushed
  • 2 tsp snipped fresh rosemary or 1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced

1.  Place chicken in a resealable plastic bag set in a shallow dish.  For marinade, stir together lemon juice, shallot, honey, oliveoil, thyme, rosemary, garlic, salt, and pepper.  Pour over chicken; seal bag.  Marinate in refrigerator for 2-4 hours, turning bag occasionally.

2.  Preheat broiler*.  Drain chicken, reserving marinade.  Place chicken on the unheated rack of a broiler an.  Broil 4-5 inches from the heat about 6 minutes or until light brown.

3.  Turn chicken; brush lightly with reserved marinade.  Discard any remaining marinade.  Broil 6-8 minutes more until chicken is no longer pink.

*Alternatively, you can grill the chicken.

Difficulty: easy
Time: 10 minutes prep, 2-4 hours marinate, 12-15 minutes broiling
Source: Better Homes and Gardens, October 2014