Friday, April 15, 2011

Grilled Shishito Peppers

I fell in love with these peppers when I dined at Beauty & Essex, on the Lower East Side in NYC. They were delicious and full of flavor.  These peppers are small, mostly mild tasting, but every once in a while you get one that has a bit of spice.  I went looking all over the place trying to find some to buy and had luck at an asian supermarket in Long Island.  Although I'm sure you can locate them closer in Chinatown. Anyway, the supermarket I found them in was calling them "sweet peppers."  They looked the same so I took a chance and got 3 packages!  I know that's a lot, but I literally eat one package per sitting.  It's like popcorn for me!  They are simple to prepare, here's the recipe!
Grilled Shishito Peppers
(serves 1-2)
1 pound shishito peppers
1 teaspoons olive oil (OR you can use non-stick cooking spray instead to save on calories!)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 lemon, juiced

Heat a grill pan (or a real BBQ) over medium-high heat.  Place peppers in a bowl and drizzle with olive oil, toss to coat evenly.  Place peppers on the grill pan and let cook for about 4 minutes. Use tongs to continuously flip and stir peppers to get charred evenly, about every 4 minutes.  Once the peppers are charred evenly place in a serving bowl and sprinkle with salt and lemon juice.  ENJOY!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Matzah Brei

Passover is here again. Wow time really does fly!  Most people who celebrate Passover aren't very fond of the holiday, I am the complete opposite. Here's a list of things I like to eat on Passover: matzah pizza, love chocolate chip macaroons, my grandma's charoset (which I hated when I was little, go figure), and finally these brownies aren't bad either!  On the flip side, I hate gefilte fish and am really am not fond of my grandma's matzah cake, but I remember loving it when I was little.

Today I am sharing with you the healthy version of another Passover favorite of mine...Matzoh Brei.  I eat it sweet with splenda and maple syrup, usually for breakfast.  No salt. No pepper.  However, I don't mind having prepared in a savory way either! This recipe has a points+ value of 7.  Add 1/4 cup sugar-free syrup and it's a points+ value of 8.
Matzah Brei
(serves 1)
2 boards of Matzah
2 egg whites (large or jumbo are good, otherwise add another egg white)
2-3 packets Splenda (optional)
1 tsp vanilla bean paste or vanilla extract (optional)
1/4 tsp cinnamon (optional)
Non-stick cooking spray

Wet the matzahs by placing under running water until soft, but not too soggy.  Break both pieces of matzah into small pieces using a fork in a small ball.  Add egg whites, splenda, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Mix to combine.  Spray a large non-stick pan with cooking spray and place on medium heat.  Pour matzah batter into the pan and cook about 7-10 minutes.  Enjoy with syrup or powdered sugar!

*If you want your brei like a pancake(see below), shape batter into a circle, or use pan as its shape, cook on one side for about 5 minutes and then flip over to cook on the other side for another 5 minutes until golden brown and cooked through. I would slide the "pancake" onto a clean plate and do a plate flip so that you don't have matzah brei all over your stovetop!
*If you like your brei scrambled, pour batter into pan, and use spatula to stir batter around to make a scramble, about 7 minutes. 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Trim Down Tuesdays: Q&A + Passover Pancakes

Welcome to Trim Down Tuesdays with Karen Moreno, RD, CDN!  Each Tuesday Karen will post answers to questions that you, the readers, ask about diet and/or nutrition AND of course, she'll post one of her own recipes.
If you have questions that you'd like Karen to answer on Feed Your Sister please do one of the following:
*post a comment below
*email me at
*post a comment on our Facebook page, click here
*post a tweet or send us a message on our Twitter page, click here
Here’s the question and answer for this week!
Now that Spring is in the air, and people are starting to think about swimsuits and the beach, what are some tips on how to kick-start feeling great, both mind and body?

June 21st is the first day of summer-that’s exactly 10 weeks to get your body into bikini shape!
Here are my top 3 tips to whip your body into shape!

1. Start with a cleanse, both for you and your cabinets.  Throw out any foods that may be tempting you-whether it’s that big bag of potato chips, those chocolate Milano cookies, or even those all natural licorice that seem to be healthy. Replace all the processed junk foods with healthy alternatives such as fresh fruits and vegetables, natural peanut butter, and some healthy fiber bars (I like GNU flavor and Fiber Bars).
2. Now that you have your kitchen cleaned up and ready to go, start by making smart choices when dining out and cooking at home. Try to eat Omega 3 rich Salmon at least 2x a week and opt for grilled chicken breast instead of red meat on most other nights of the week. Studies show that eating 1 serving of fatty fish a week such as salmon can decrease your cardiac risk by up to 50%. Also, switch from white rice to brown rice and try to make all the grains you eat 100% WHOLE WHEAT. Snack on baby carrots or cut up fruit during the day and fill up on veggies both during lunch and dinner (along with 3-4 oz of grilled chicken or fish and ½ cup of brown rice, whole wheat pasta, or baked sweet potato).
3. Exercise-now that you’re avoiding sweets and trying to be more conscious of what you’re putting into your body set an exercise goal for yourself. Since summer is coming try to set a goal of 3-4x a week of working out, and that can be consecutive or spread throughout the day. However, if that’s impossible, always remember that something is better than nothing. So if you can already run 30 minutes, aim for 40 minutes at your next workout. If you can’t run at all, then try alternating three minutes walking with one minute of a light jog, and when that gets easy, challenge yourself with a two minute jog in between. Also do pushups and planks. Those are great ways to tone your whole body in very few minutes. Check out this new great FREE website,, which gives you access to hundreds of free full body workouts that will get you beach body ready by June 21st!

Here's Karen's recipe for this week! Enjoy!
Passover Pancakes
Serves: 4-6 (Makes 10-15 pancakes)
Time: 20 minutes

3 eggs
4 tbsp matzoah meal
¼ cup orange juice
1 tsp cinnamon
¼ cup chopped walnuts

Sugar Drizzle
1 cup water
1 cup sugar (or Splenda)

Whisk all the ingredients for the pancakes.  Spray non stick oil onto a pan, over low-medium 
heat and pour batter to make mini pancakes. 
Let them sit on pan for 2-3 minutes, then flip over for another 2-3 minutes until lightly 
and fully cooked.
To make the sugar drizzle: In a small pot, pour water and sugar. Mix it until it boils and 
is hot.
Take off of flame. Let cool. Serve pancakes with sugar drizzle or see healthier 
options mentioned above.

Nutrition Content:
Per 3 mini Pancakes: 105 calories, 6.4 g fat, 1.2 g sat fat, 7.14 g carbs, .6 g fiber, 
4.8 g protein
*If using sugar drizzle: Add on about 100 calories, per 1/4 cup
—Karen Moreno, RD, CDN

Monday, April 11, 2011

Turkey Pesto Burger

This might be the easiest and most tasty recipe ever!!  It's only 3 ingredients and takes minimal work on your part.  Sorry about not having a photo, I'll take one next time I make this, which should be very soon!  Each patty has a points+ value of 5.  Lots of flavor and protein! Woohoo!

Turkey Pesto Burger
(serves 5)

1 pound lean ground turkey meat
1 cup shallots, chopped
1/4 cup pesto sauce or this dairy-free pesto (store bought is fine too)

Spray a large saute pan with non-stick spray and cook shallots until translucent, about 10 minutes over medium heat.  Transfer shallots to a glass bowl and let cool.  Once cooled, add ground turkey and pesto and mix with clean hands until combined.  Form 5 patties and cook them on the BBQ or if you are indoors use a grill pan.  Cook each side for about 7-8 minutes.  Serve burger with a slice of provolone.  It goes really well with some Creamy Jalacado Spread

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Creamy Jalacado Spread

What's a jalacado you ask??  Well, it's a spread made of jalapenos and avocado, duh?! Back in February I saw this recipe posted on Lottie + Doof, of course I didn't make it that day.  However, I did place the link on my desktop to save for a rainy day.  When I finally got around to this recipe, I happen to have some ripe avocados in the fridge that needed to be used, so that's where the jalacado came in.  And by the way, it wasn't actually raining that day.  The recipe makes about 1 1/2 cups, each serving is about 1/4 cup.  Each serving has a points+ value of 3 for those of you on Weight Watchers.  Beware this is super spicy!! I you want it to be less spicy f you must de-seed the peppers before grinding them all up.  If you'd like to make a thinner dip for chips, thin out the spread with water, and you'll definitely get more than 6 servings! Here's the recipe!
Creamy Jalacado Spread
(serves 6)
4 jalapenos, roasted dry in a 400 degree oven for about 45 minutes, de-seeded or not
*(depending on how spicy you want it to be)
7 cloves of garlic
3/4 of a ripe avocado
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1/8 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/8 cup vegetable oil

Combine all the ingredients in a mini food processor and pulse until smooth.  Place in a bowl and use for sandwiches, burgers, as a dip for veggies, or thin out with water for an alternative to salsa with tortilla chips! Enjoy!

Here's a sammy I made with multigrain toast, jalacado spread, tomato slices and provolone under the broiler for a few!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Trim Down Tuesdays: Q&A + Beet Salad

Welcome to Trim Down Tuesdays with Karen Moreno, RD, CDN!  Each Tuesday Karen will post answers to questions that you, the readers, ask about diet and/or nutrition AND of course, she'll post one of her own recipes.
If you have questions that you'd like Karen to answer on Feed Your Sister please do one of the following:
*post a comment below
*email me at
*post a comment on our Facebook page, click here
*post a tweet or send us a message on our Twitter page,click here

Here’s the question and answer for this week!
1. How can we eat healthy and maintain that type of lifestyle while still enjoying all the foods of the holidays, both Passover and Easter!?
With the holidays right around the corner it can be hard to lose weight. So here's my suggestion! In the two weeks before the holidays, which starts now, focus on exercising and eating right. During the holiday season change your focus to weight maintenance. If you can maintain your weight and refocus once the holidays are over you'll still have time to get in shape for the summer.
Just  a few things to remember:
1. Try to EXERCISE at least 3 times a week. If you can't make it to a gym, try to walk for at least 30 minutes a day and always remember that you can break up your routine into smaller intervals. So three 10 minute bursts of activity are just as good as one 30 minute session.
2. PLAN AHEAD. If you know you are going to a family dinner in the evening make sure to eat a big breakfast and healthy lunch so that your not starving when you get to dinner.
3. If dinner is a BUFFET, make sure to SEE EVERYTHING that is being offered FIRST before starting to build your plate. This way you can pick and choose what you like. Always start by filling your plate with salad and vegetables, then add your protein (chicken, fish, beef) and lastly, add some starch (pasta, rice, potatoes), about a fist-full worth.
4. If your GRANDMA makes your favorite dish only once a year then ENJOY it! Let that be your indulgence and make the rest of your meal healthy.  
5. DESSERT.  If you feel like you need something sweet after your meal, try having a bite of the dessert that's calling for you.  Have one bite for the taste and then stop, because you know the second bite is going to taste just like the first one! :) Fruit is always a good option too.
6. Most importantly, if you give in to your temptations one night, just remember that it's only one meal, be sure to jump right back to where you started the next time around. Don't let one bad meal or snack ruin the day, put a stop to it then and eat healthy at your next meal.
Happy Holidays!

Here's Karen's recipe for this week! It's similar to My Mama's Beets, but not entirely the same at all! 
Did you know that both Beets and Swiss chard are different   within the same plant family? Although beets tend to have a bad stigma due to their high sugar content they are very low in calories. I love beets because of their dark purple color which adds a lot of flavor and color to salads. Not only do beets taste good but they are also full of folate, magnesium, potassium, fiber, and vitamin C which can help protect against birth defects, heart disease, and certain cancers, especially colon cancer. The pigment that gives beets their rich, purple-crimson color-betacyanin- has been shown in many studies to be a powerful cancer-fighting agent. In addition, studies have shown that beets have a very high anti-inflammatory effect on the body. 
When preparing beets, be careful not to stain yourself. I always wear kitchen gloves when preparing them so that I don’t ruin my newly manicured hands. If the beets somehow do make it onto your skin, just rub some lemon juice on them and it will remove the stain (a trick my grandma taught me).
Beet Salad
Serves 6-8 (as a small side salad/appetizer)
4 large beets
¼ cup olive oil
4 tbsp vinegar
1 tsp salt** (not necessary if on a salt restricted diet)
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp pepper
4 garlic cloves, crushed
½ of a white onion, finely chopped
**Tip: Salt will blunt beets' color, so add only at the end of cooking if needed.

Rinse and clean the beets—remove the leaves and roots. Do not peel. Boil in a pot of water for about 40 minutes, until they are fork tender. Wearing gloves, peel the beets under running water. The skin should come off easily.  Slice the beets and chop into 1-inch thick cubes. 
In a separate bowl mix all the ingredients and whisk until it thickens a little. Pour over the beets and mix it all until it becomes covered with the sauce. Put in the refrigerator and cool for about 1 hr. Serve cold. ENJOY!
Nutrition Content:
Per serving: 97 calories, 1 g protein, 6.7 g carbs, 1.5 g fiber, 7.5 g fat, 1 g sat fat, 376 mg sodium, 174 mg potassium 
—Karen Moreno, RD, CDN

Monday, April 4, 2011

Orange Miso Dressing

I was flipping through this month's Bon Appetit magazine and came across a recipe for orange miso dressing.  I thought about what I had in my fridge and was excited because I had all the ingredients at home!  I made two  adaptations to this recipe. First, I used vegetable oil instead of safflower oil.  Although I suppose you could use any oil that doesn't have an overpowering flavor. Second, I used a blood orange instead of a regular orange, from the zest to the juice, I went blood. I also added splenda and rice vinegar.  In my salad I mixed romaine, dried cherries, carrots, cabbage, mango, cilantro, blood orange segments, tomatoes and cucumbers. Any and all ingredients you desire would work just fine, be creative! Enjoy!
Orange Miso Dressing
(enough for 1 entree-size salad)
2 tablespoons water
1 1/2 teaspoons white miso paste
1 tablespoon safflower oil
1 1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1 packet splenda
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
3 tablespoons fresh orange juice (Use the orange you just zested!)
salt and pepper, to taste

Combine ingredients in a container or jar with a lid, and shake, shake, shake! Drizzle over your salad and enjoy!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Chocolate and Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake

This is another recipe I saved onto my desktop, from Chocolate Shavings. My desktop is filled with recipes I want to try but don't have time to make! I thought this would be a great thank you cake to make for Joey, the friend who designed my new logo!  Don't you love it!  I do!! Thanks Joey!  I also made him these chocolaty cookies.  I found that this recipe makes a lot of batter. So I had filled my loaf pan and then still had extra crumb topping and batter to fill up a ramekin and coffee mug, so I filled them, and baked them too! Thank god I had a cookie sheet under my loaf pan while it was baking, because literally I had a coffee cake explosion. Here's a picture of what the coffee cake baked in the mug looked like to give you an idea...looks just like a cup of coffee, doesn't it?! 
Chocolate and Cinnamon Swirl Coffee Cake
(recipe source: Chocolate Shavings, adapted from the Baked cookbook, although I made my cake in a loaf pan)
Crumb Topping
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup of hazelnuts
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 inch pieces

Chocolate Cinnamon Swirl
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon dark unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs
16 ounces fat free sour cream
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Crumb Topping:
Put the flour, sugar, and salt in bowl of food processor and pulse to combine. Add the hazelnuts and pulse until they are finely chopped and incorporated. Add the butter and pulse until mixture looks like coarse sand. Cover and refrigerate.

Chocolate Cinnamon Swirl:
Mix ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Sour Cream Cake:
Preheat the oven to 350° F. Butter a 9×13-inch baking pan (whatever you use make sure not to fill it more than half way, the cake will overflow!!!) Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt together in a medium bowl.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter until smooth. Scrape down bowl and add sugar. Beat until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition and scraping bowl as needed.
Add the sour cream and vanilla and beat just until incorporated. Add the dry ingredients in three additions, scraping down the bowl before each addition and beating only until each addition is just incorporated. Do not overmix.
Pour one third of the cake batter into the prepared pan. Use an offset spatula to spread batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle half of the chocolate cinnamon swirl mixture over batter and a third of the crumble topping, covering the entire surface of the batter. Spoon half of remaining batter over the swirl mixture and spread it evenly. Top with remaining swirl mixture and crumble topping, then the remaining batter, and spread the batter evenly. Sprinkle the remaining crumb topping evenly over the top of the batter.
Bake in the center of the oven for one hour, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes.
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