Totally Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups

Posted by Jen | Recipes | Monday 23 January 2012 10:03 pm
I just made this very VERY tasty meal tonight.
PER SERVING (entire recipe):
227 calories, 4.5g fat, 875mg sodium, 21g carbs, 3g fiber, 12.5g sugars, 23g protein
PointsPlus® value 5*
Totally Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups by Hungry-Girl.com

Totally Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups

Source:  www.hungry-girl.com

  • 3/4 c peeled and diced cucumber
  • 2 scallions, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 tbsp shredded carrot
  • 2 tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp chopped cilantro
  • Dash crushed red pepper
  • 3 oz raw boneless skinless lean chicken, cubed
  • 1/8 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 1/2 tbsp Thai peanut salad dressing
  • 3 leaves romaine, butter or green leaf lettuce
In a bowl, combine cucumber, scallions, carrot shreds, rice vinegar, cilantro, and crushed red pepper. Mix well and refrigerate until you’re ready to assemble your cups.

Bring a skillet sprayed with nonstick spray to medium-high heat.

Add chicken and sprinkle with garlic powder.

Cook chicken, stirring occasionally, until browned and cooked through, about 4 minutes.
Place chicken and peanut dressing or sauce in a bowl and toss to coat. Remove veggie mixture from the fridge.

To assemble, evenly distribute the veggie mixture and the chicken among the lettuce “cups.” If you like, finish with a squirt of lime juice and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. Chomp chomp!

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My Notes: I didn’t have any lettuce leaves large enough to make cups, so I just spooned everything over my Organic Girl Baby Spring Mix.   This is what my final dish looked like:
Totally Thai Chicken Lettuce Cups - Hungry-Girl.com

Sun-Dried Tomato Artichoke Chicken

Posted by Jen | Recipes | Tuesday 17 January 2012 6:55 pm

I made a fabulous dinner for myself today.  I found the recipe on the back of a Knorr package for French Onion Soup.  I usually don’t like using recipes that don’t include the nutritional information such as fat and carb content, but after looking at the ingredients, I figured it really shouldn’t be too high in calories.  In any case, there is still some tweaking I can do the next time I make (which I definitely will.)

INGREDIENTS:

  • 4 bone-in chicken breast halves (I substituted 5 boneless tenderloins)
  • 2 TBSP olive oil  (I think I’ll forgo this ingredient next time – I’ll explain why later.)
  • 1 package of Knorr French Onion recipe mix (I’m sure any 1.4 oz package of dry French onion soup would work.)
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (I used 2 teaspoons of pre-minced garlic)
  • 1/3 cup chopped, drained sun-dried tomatoes in oil.  (I used the kind without oil.)
  • 1 jar (6 oz.) marinated artichoke hearts, undrained.  (The jar has olive oil in it already and more than enough for the recipe.  I don’t think the extra olive oil above is necessary.  Yes, olive oil is a healthy fat, but don’t add the extra calories if you don’t need them, right?)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place chicken in large baking or roasting pan.
  3. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over the chicken.
  4. Bake for 30 minutes or until chicken is thoroughly cooked.

As a side-dish I added steamed vegetables with a little bit of balsamic vinegar added to them.
A very very tasty meal, indeed!

PICS OR IT DIDN’T HAPPEN:

The Ingredients - chicken, garlic, tomatoes and artichoke hearts

The Ingredients

Ready to Cook

Ready to Cook

sun-dried tomato artichoke chicken

Sun-dried tomato artichoke chicken

Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Posted by Jen | Candida,Recipes | Saturday 13 February 2010 8:23 pm

I found a yummy recipe on AllRecipes.com, but tweaked it to make it Candida-Friendly for my daughter.

Ingredients

  • 1 spaghetti squash, halved and seeded
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1/2 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup diced red onion
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 2 small tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 1/4 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (optional)*
*Most Candida diets do not allow for dairy products.
In order to make the recipe “Candida-Friendly” for my daughter, I did not add the cheese.

Preparation and Baking Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
  2. Place squash on a baking sheet, and bake 40 minutes, or until tender. Remove from heat, cool, and shred pulp with a fork.
  3. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a casserole dish.
  4. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the ground beef until evenly brown. Drain, and mix in the green pepper, red pepper, red onion, and garlic. Continue to cook and stir until vegetables are tender.
  5. Mix the shredded squash and tomatoes into the skillet, and season with oregano, basil, salt, and pepper. Cook and stir until heated through.
  6. Remove skillet from heat, and (optional: mix in 2 cups cheese until melted.) Transfer to the prepared casserole dish.
  7. Bake 25 minutes in the preheated oven. (Optional: Sprinkle with remaining cheese, and continue baking 5 minutes, until cheese is melted)
I will take a picture and add it to the post the next time I make it, but I will say that this was the first dish I made for my daughter that she actually ate since starting her Candida diet.  She is allowed to have corn chips, so she put a serving of this casserole in a bowl and surrounded it with 5 or 6 corn chips.  It reminded us a little bit of a taco – a bit mushier because of the spaghetti squash, but definitely just as tasty.
It makes about 6 servings.
The nutritional information for each serving is below:
Calories Fat Cholesterol Sodium Carbs Sugar Fiber Protein
151 5g 66mg 78mg 10g 2g 2g 17g
Weight Watcher’s Points: 3

Green Tea/White Tea

Posted by Jen | Food and Drink | Sunday 18 May 2008 5:00 pm

So, I picked up some white tea the other day. I have cut down on my coffee so much since starting this new eating plan in January and I have been switching to an occasional cup of tea. The reason I cut down on coffee is mainly for the calories. I don’t put any sugar in it, but I love my half and half. I was able to even cut that down to 1/8 cup of half and half and 1 tablespoon of fat free creamer, but the amount of calories (70) and the lack of healthy nutrition isn’t enough to allow myself to have it more than once a day. On my non-exercise days, I usually consume about 1325 calories and I need those 70 calories to spend on healthier foods.

So, anyway, I have been drinking green tea mostly, but saw some white tea in the store and vaguely remember Dr. Oz mentioning it on Oprah recently and thought I would buy some.

After a few days of drinking it, I began to wonder what the difference actually is between the two teas. The taste seems the same to me, personally, so what about the benefits?

Green Tea Benefits

  1. Rich in antioxidants or polyphenols (specifically, EGCG.)
  2. Lowers LDL cholesterol.
  3. Inhibits abnormal blood clotting.
  4. Kills bacteria.

1. Polyphenols are chemicals that have the possibility of fighting against some of our common health issues and may also inhibit certain signs of aging. They act as antioxidants in our bodies. When molecules in our bodies break down they have the possibility of breaking down in an unstable manner. They them roam the body as “free radicals” – atoms with missing electrons.
As they attempt to ‘steal’ electrons from other cells, these free radicals can cause damage to the body. (Stealing is just plain wrong!) This problem has been linked to cancer, aging, problems with the immune system, etc. Antioxidants fight free radicals. They ‘donate’ one of their electrons to the free radical and have the ability to remain stable by doing it. In turn, the free radical is also returned to a stable state.
The polyphenol most associated with preventing the growth of cancer is EGCG, which is found in all teas, but large quantities are found in green tea. Research has shown, however, that white tea has a significantly higher concentration of antioxidants than green tea. So, if this is your primary reason for drinking tea, you might want to switch to white.

2. As far as cholesterol is concerned, LDL is the bad cholesterol. (HDL is good..I remember it by saying “H” is for “healthy.”) LDL is the ‘oxidized’ form of cholesterol. As explained above, oxidation causes free radicals. Therefore, the anti-0xidant properties of Green Tea can help inhibit the LDL oxidation.

3. It has been known to inhibit abnormal blood clotting (which can lead to heart attacks and strokes.)

4. Supposedly, green tea can kill bacteria. Bacteria in our foods, in our mouths (to help with bad breath), and a certain antibiotic-immune strain of the staph germ.


White Tea Benefits
Supposedly nearly everything green tea can do, white tea does better.

  1. Greater concentrations of polyphenols (antioxidants)
  2. Possibly better anti-bacterial properties than green tea.
  3. Strong potential for fighting cancer.

1. As explained above, polyphenols are antioxidants. Antioxidants (especially the extremely powerful EGCG) can aid in the prevention of cancer. White tea has the higher levels of EGCG than green tea.

2. Pace University did a study in 2004 that provided evidence that white tea can provide protection against certain germs and viruses, including the harmful bacteria causing staph, strep and pneumonia. 1 They stated that green tea had already been proven to stimulate the immune system, but white tea can actually destroy some of these germs as they are forming. White tea was more effective

3. Researchers at Oregon State University discovered that white tea may have the strongest cancer fighting properties of all the teas they have tested. 2 The reason for this actually ties in with the fact that (as mentioned above) white tea has higher levels of polyphenols than the other teas. These polyphenols inhibited cell mutations, thereby reducing a person’s cancer risk, more effectively than green tea.
Oregon State also discovered that the consumption of white tea reduced the tumors in lab rats from 30 to about 13. The rats who actually consumed cancer-reducing drugs decreased their tumors from 30 to about 6. The fact that the natural properties of tea was able to make such a difference has definitely caught the attention of the medical community.

Other Notes

  • When drinking green tea or white tea, it has recently been discovered that adding a little bit of citrus juice can allow the antioxidants to remain available for absorption even after the tea exits the stomach. The reason for this is that some of the antioxidants chemicals become unstable when they are not in an acidic environment. After leaving the acidic environment of the stomach and entering the intestines, fewer of the antioxidant properties are available for further absorption. By adding citric juice (such as lemon or orange juice) it travels with the tea into the intestines and allows for better absorption. A Perdue University study found that citrus juice increased the tea’s antioxidant levels in the intestines by more than five times.3

All in all, I have switched to drinking nearly all white tea, with an occasional cup of green tea from time to time. (Mostly because green tea is a little less expensive and easier to find than white tea.) Since the studies on white tea are still new, I am always keeping an eye out for new updates and information about the tea. In the meantime, it sounds like there is enough positive to make it worthwhile to treat myself to a cup everyday.

References:

  1. American Society For Microbiology (2004, May 28). White Tea Beats Green Tea In Fighting Germs. ScienceDaily. Retrieved June 8, 2008, from http://www.sciencedaily.com­/releases/2004/05/040526070934.htm
  2. American Chemical Society (2000, April 13). Cancer-Preventive Potential Of White Tea. ScienceDaily. Retrieved June 8, 2008, from http://www.sciencedaily.com­ /releases/2000/04/000410084553.htm
  3. Purdue University (2007, November 14). Citrus Juice, Vitamin C Give Staying Power To Green Tea Antioxidants. ScienceDaily. Retrieved June 8, 2008, from http://www.sciencedaily.com­ /releases/2007/11/071113163016.htm