LOW FAT FETTUCCINE ALFREDO WITH SMOKED SALMON

When you think of fettucine alfredo you may think of thick cream, tons of Parmesan cheese, and tons of butter. I will say for all of you health conscious people out there, there is a way to enjoy fettucine alfredo without all of that needless fat! I made this easy low fat alfredo sauce that still is creamy in taste and texture. I plated it along side beautiful thinly sliced smoked salmon that my husband Matt bought at the St. Lawrence Market last week. Doesn't this plate of delicious fettucine and smoked salmon almost look too pretty to eat? It's a real looker! It's not a food that I would have every day, but if you're trying to cook to impress I think this might be the recipe that you're looking for.
Serves 2 generously

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb fettuccine (you may find you need less)
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 cup carrots, shredded (I used a small pkg of pre-cut carrot coleslaw)
  • 1/2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 cups 1% or 2% milk
  • 2 tsps cornstarch
  • coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 small head of broccoli, florets (optional)
  • 8-10 smoked salmon thin slices
  • fresh basil, torn by hand (when serving)
1. Put on a large pot of boiling water. Once it comes up to a boil, salt the water and add in the dry fettuccine. Follow the package instructions - cook until al dente. This should take usually between 7-9 minutes.
2. In a medium shallow pot, on medium high heat, add in the butter and olive oil. Once it comes up to temp, add in the chopped onion and minced garlic, and saute for 2 minutes. Add in the shredded carrots, and dijon mustard, saute for another minute or so. Lower the heat to medium.
3. Pour in the milk and let it come up to temp, then whisk in the cornstarch, salt, pepper, and egg yolk. Keep whisking until the sauce starts to thicken and come together. Sprinkle in the Parmesan cheese and add in the broccoli florets if you wish. Turn the heat off once the sauce has come together.
4. Add in the cooked fettuccine. Using tongs, gently fold the sauce and fettuccine together. Make sure to taste the finished dish and see if it needs more salt or pepper. After plating the fettuccine, place 4 pieces of smoked salmon right on top of the pasta. Then tear a few basil leaves right on top. Serve immediately and enjoy!
Cook's Tip: If you find after you toss in the fettuccine noodles the sauce becomes too thick, go ahead and pour 1/4 cup of warm milk at a time; until you get the consistency you desire. This should help loosen the sauce.
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My husband had recently gone to the St. Lawrence Market here in our city. With such a wonderful variety of specialty items there, my husband Matt had brought home a really nice bottle of aged balsamic vinegar for us to try. The wheels in my head kept turning and turning. I was thinking of all of the possible things I could try to make using the aged balsamic, but I decided that the best thing was to keep things simple. The taste is definitely "vinegary" but the sourness that comes with the vinegar is quite mild and smooth. I knew that a good way to make this ingredient shine was to use it in a simple salad recipe. This combination of flavours for me was the best! I would say most definitely the balsamic vinegar brought out the best in these ingredients. I felt like I was having a gourmet salad from a restaurant. So yummy!

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups baby salad greens
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, sliced thin into half moons
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced into half moons
  • 1 small red onion, sliced thin (use only what you need)
  • manchego cheese, shavings
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2-3 tbsp aged balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1. Take two nice salad plates and place them onto the counter. Since this is an arranged salad you won't need a bowl to toss the salad in. Take one cup of salad greens and place it onto the plate, then take the other cup of salad greens and plate them onto the other plate. Take the tomato and avocado slices and place them on top of the salad greens, making sure to alternate the two.

2. Sprinkle a bit of sliced red onion -use the amount that you need. Shave the manchego cheese right on top of the salad, and sprinkle freshly cracked black pepper. Lightly drizzle the balsamic vinegar and the olive oil. Note: make sure to use the very best fruity olive oil that you have. Serve immediately since you don't want the avocado to turn brown.

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Meatloaf is a staple dinner in many families in North America. It is definitely easy to see why! It really takes no time at all to put together and it is even easier because the oven does all of the cooking for you. I was watching a cooking show one day (to be honest I forget now which one!) and saw that the lady was placing in a ton of sundried tomatoes into the meatloaf. I was intrigued! I never heard of putting in sundried tomatoes and knew that I had to try that out one day. I soon did, and boy was I glad to have tried it! It truly packed a punch of flavour. I knew that with sundried tomatoes going in; the meatloaf itself didn't need much more in terms of ingredients. This is truly a winning recipe and I plan to use for years to come. If you love meatloaf you will love this recipe. What is great about this recipe is that you can make burgers with this as well. Your kids are going to thank you for making this.

Serves 4

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Baking time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
  • 1 lb extra lean ground beef or chicken or turkey
  • coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 4 button mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 tbsp parsley, chopped
  • 2 tbsp fresh basil, sliced thin
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 1 slice of whole wheat bread, torn up (soaked in 1/4 cup milk for a few minutes)
  • 1 tbsp dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp sundried tomatoes, chopped (get the ones packed in oil)
  • 3 tsps sundried tomato oil (from the jar)
  • ketchup (to drizzle on top of the meatloaf before baking)

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F, and line a baking sheet with foil. In a large bowl, add in the ground meat of your choice, salt, pepper, chopped onion, mushrooms, parsley, basil, beaten egg, slice of bread soaked in milk, dijon mustard, sundried tomatoes, and the sundried tomato oil. Using your clean hands, gently mix all of the ingredients together until just combined.

2. Pour the mixture onto the lined baking sheet and free form the meatloaf into a nice large oval shape. Take a bottle of ketchup (the ones with the squeeze tops) and drizzle a good portion of ketchup right on top of the meatloaf. Smooth out the ketchup using a spoon, then place the meatloaf into the preheated oven for a good 30 minutes, or until the meatloaf has finished cooking. Let the meat rest for a few minutes, then slice and serve warm along side a simple spring mix salad.

Cook's tip: You can also use this meatloaf mixture to make meatballs or burgers instead. Sundried tomato meatballs or burgers anyone? yum!

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BAKED COD IN CREAM SAUCE WITH ASPARAGUS & CARROTS

Being busy with an active baby I decided that dinners had to be one that was super quick and easy. Dinner one night was going to be fish, and I decided the best way to cook fish for my busy life was to wrap it in foil; and let the oven do all of the work for me. I made a simple cream sauce to pour on top and I let the delicious sauce infuse into the fish, asparagus and carrots while baking inside a foil bundle. I served this along side rice and let the rice soak up the goodness! If you have a busy life like me than this recipe is definitely for you.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 bundle of asparagus
  • 2 carrots, peeled and quartered lengthways (1 carrot per foiled bundle)
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • 2 small cod fillets
  • 1 can of cream of broccoli soup (use only half the can)
  • coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • few dashes of hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • juice and zest of one lemon (use half the lemon for each bundle)
  • cooked white rice (serve on the side)

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Take two large piece of foil and place it on the cutting board. Take the bundle of asparagus, trim the bottom, and place it on the centre of the foil. Make sure to put half of the bundle of asparagus for each foil bundle. Place the carrots and the sliced shallots and put them on top. Then place the fillet of cod on top of the veggies.


2. In a bowl, combine half the can of broccoli soup, good pinch of salt, black pepper, grated garlic, hot sauce, milk and dijon mustard. Spoon the creamed soup mixture onto each bundle; right on top of the cod. Then sprinkle a little green onion, and zest and juice the lemon right on top as well.

3. Wrap the foil into a tight bundle and place each bundle on a medium sized baking sheet. Place it into the oven and bake it at 375 degrees F for a good 30 minutes. Serve immediately along side some cooked white rice and eat!
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SIMMERED PORK LOIN IN A LEMONY SWEET POTATO SAUCE

One night I was looking through the fridge and wondering what to make for dinner (as most of you do out there for sure!). I honestly didn't have much left in the fridge in terms of groceries and thought, "there is absolutely nothing I can make unless I use some leftover mushed sweet potato baby food," that I had made for my sweet little girl. I know what you're saying readers "you used baby food?", I kid you not I did. I mean hey it's just watered down sweet potatoes. I took the baby food and made it into a lucious lemony sauce for the pork loin I had in the fridge. I gave myself a huge pat on the back. The result... simply delicious!

Makes 2 pork tenderloins

Ingredients:
  • 2 pork tenderloins (if too large to fit into your shallow pot, then slice the loin in half to fit)
  • 3/4 cup sweet potato, pureed and watered down
  • 1/2 cup low sodium chicken stock
  • coarse salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1/2 tbsp dried thyme
  • juice of half a lemon
  • zest of one lemon
  • 6-10 dashes of hot sauce (optional)
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • naan bread, lightly toasted (to serve along side)

1. In a medium shallow pot, place in the 2 pork tenderloins. Cut into half if needs be to fit into the pot. In a medium sized bowl, combine the sweet potato puree, chicken stock, salt, pepper, olive oil, grated garlic, light soy sauce, dried thyme, juice and the zest of a lemon. You can add in the hot sauce if you like it spicy. Pour the mixture on top of the pork tenderloin in the pot.

2. Add in the chopped onion into the pot and season with a little more salt and pepper. Turn the heat on to medium high and with the lid on simmer for a good 15 minutes, then lower the heat down to low or a gentle simmer. When you lower the heat make sure to have the lid a slight bit open to the side to allow the steam to release. Cook for another 20 minutes or until the pork has cooked through and the sauce has thickened. Serve warm and make sure to dip the naan bread into the sauce.

Cooking Tip: If you find the sauce is thickening too quick for you add a 1/2 cup more stock at a time, to loosen the sauce a bit. This will allow more cooking time.

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CARROT AND APPLE SLAW

Here is a refreshing take on coleslaw. The sweetness of the carrots and apples pair wonderfully with the zingy flavour of the lime juice in the slaw. I love to serve this along side braised pork or chicken. This slaw will certainly help to lighten any heavy meal that you're serving. It also looks very bright and colourful on the plate too. My husband loved this slaw recipe so here I am sharing it with you all, enjoy!

Serves 2-3 (as a side)

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups carrots, sliced into thin matchsticks (or use pre-shredded carrots in a package)
  • 1 small golden delicious apple or granny smith apple, sliced into thin matchsticks
  • half a small red onion, sliced thin
  • 2 tbsp fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
  • 3 tbsp light mayonnaise
  • juice of one lime
  • 2 tsps liquid honey
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
  • small handful of currants (optional)

1. In a medium sized bowl, add in the sliced carrots, apples, red onion and the chopped parsley. Using clean hands or a pair of tongs, gently mix it altogether to combine.

2. In the same bowl, add in 3 tablespoons of light mayo, juice of one lime, 2 teaspoons of liquid honey, and one tablespoon of oil. Sprinkle in salt and pepper to taste. Tip: If the lime you're using is not as juicy add the juice of another half a lime.

3. Using tongs, gently toss all of the ingredients together until just combined. Then place a saran wrap over the bowl and place it into the fridge for a good hour before serving. Serve along side braised or grilled chicken, pork, or fish.

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MINI ENOKI MUSHROOM OMELET WITH SOY DIP SAUCE

Hello Food Tastes Yummy readers! This is the first recipe that I am posting for 2011! After having my baby I found myself not having enough time to cook. Honestly, although cooking is such a passion for me, I found myself not enjoying cooking anymore because of my busy schedule. I didn't want to post just for the sake of posting. I don't believe in that. I can now say I am officially ready to post delicious recipes for you all now. Here is a recipe for mini enoki mushroom omelets that my mom gave to me. My mom, while helping me with the baby, made me this for a quick lunch quite a few times. This is a Korean take on omelets. What is really great about this is the simplicity of it all. Surprisingly, the enoki mushrooms add such a nice earthy flavour that the omelet doesn't need anything else. The soy dip merely adds a nice spicy zing! This is exactly the type of food I grew up with. This recipe is for all of you busy people out there!

Makes about 14 mini omelets

Ingredients:
  • 1 large bundle of enoki mushrooms, cut into thirds (180g or a 6.4 oz package)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar or white vinegar
  • 1/2 tsp Korean hot pepper powder

1. Take the large bundle of enoki mushrooms and cut them into thirds; making sure to disgard the bottom part of the mushroom. Place them into a medium sized bowl.

2. Add in one whole egg, and two egg whites into the bowl of mushrooms. Add salt and pepper to taste and combine the mixture altogether.

3. Preheat a non-stick skillet on medium heat and drizzle a little bit of vegetable oil. Spoon the omelet mixture onto the preheated skillet. You should be able to get around 14 mini omelets out of the mixture. Once the omelet is golden brown on one side, then flip it over and fry it on the other side. This should only take about 1 minute at most.

4. Soy Sauce dip: Combine all of the ingredients together. Tip: if you find the dip a bit too salty for your taste then go ahead and add 1/2 tsp of liquid honey or white sugar. Plate the omelets, and serve along side the dip and enjoy!
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FOOD TASTES YUMMY IS BACK FOR 2011 THIS THURSDAY



Hello Food Tastes Yummy Readers!
  • A very late Happy New Year to you all! I know that after having our beautiful baby last year I haven't been blogging really at all, but I am happy to announce that Food Tastes Yummy is back and running. I hope to have the first 2011 recipe up this Thursday, February 17th. I hope you all come and check out the latest post.
  • Please feel free to send any questions or comments to me or my husband Matt. We always love to hear from our readers.

Thanks for sticking by us and I hope to have more yummy recipes and other posts for you in the near future.

Sincerely,

Nancy

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