Best Bloody Mary

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Bloody Mary’s are the healthiest mixed drink you could make if you use the right ingredients.  They’re a meal in a cup!

Ingredients:

  • Vodka (I prefer svedka) (about 1 &1/2-2 shots)
  • V8 all natural vegetable juice (about 6 oz.) watch out for other vegetable juices like Clamato that has high fructose corn syrup & is made with unnatural ingredients
  • Sea salt & Pepper (a few dashes)
  • Garlic powder (a few dashes)
  • Secret Ingredient: Worcestershire sauce (about 3-4 Tbsp)
  • For spicy: Horseradish (about 1 & 1/2 tsp) & Hot sauce ex: siracha (about 1 tsp)
  • For garnish: Celery/ Okra/ Green olives

I like my bloody mary’s spicy!  I play around with the ratios of these different ingredients so these amounts are just relative.  It’s simple to make a restaurant quality bloody mary.  Just taste it as you go along, and add to it accordingly.

Cheers!

Cheers! At Custom House in Avila Beach, CA.

 

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Crunchy Asian Salad

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Countdown to Easter: 2 Days!

This is a great springtime salad to contribute to an Easter banquet

Ingredients: 

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  • 1 large head of Napa cabbage
  • 1/2 head of cabbage
  • 1 package pre-chopped purple cabbage
  • 1 package pre-chopped carrots
  • 5 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 c. toasted sliced almonds
  • Optional: 1 Tbsp. sesame seeds
  • Soy Ginger dressing (Trader Joe’s) or other low-fat/low-sugar asian style dressing
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Toss salad to spread dressing out thinly & evenly

Enjoy this crunchy salad & share with friends & family

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You could also add chicken for some protein & make it a Chinese Chicken Salad

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Asparagus, Red Pepper & Turkey Sausage Quiche

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Week of Easter: 6 days until Easter!

Quiches are a great idea for Easter brunch & there are endless combinations of meats, cheeses and veggies to fill your quiche will.  Typical quiches from a restaurant are full of fat because of the crust, however, this quiche is made with a whole wheat flour tortilla crust which makes it a completely healthy yet flavorful dish that anyone would love

Ingredients: Yields 8 servings

  • 1/2 package of Jenny-O turkey sausage
  • 3 whole wheat tortillas
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup swiss cheese, shredded
  • 3/4 c. asparagus pieces
  • 1/2 red pepper
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. paprika
  • Sea salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Cook turkey sausage in bite-sized chunks according to package, set aside
  3. Saute red pepper & asparagus, set aside
  4. Coat round pyrex oven-safe plate with olive oil
  5. Overlap 2 tortillas & cut the third in half to form a crust without spaces
  6. In a medium bowl, beat eggs and milk
  7. Add turkey sausage, swiss cheese, red pepper, asparagus, paprika, salt & pepper to egg mixture & combine
  8. Pour egg mixture into tortilla-lined pyrex
  9. Bake for about 50 minutes
  10. To check if it’s done: Tap the edge of the pyrex plate and see if eggs are set, if it is still liquidy, bake a little longer
  11. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes before slicing into portions.

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Serve with fresh avocado & salsa

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Asian Soba Noodle Soup with Lemongrass

IMG_1019Soba noodles are made out of buckwheat so they are high in fiber and are a good source of protein because they contain all eight essential amino acids.

Ingredients: 

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  • 5 oz. soba noodles
  • 1 large boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 8 oz. (2 packages) shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 large carrots, chopped into small rounds
  • 2 stalks of green onions, chopped
  • 5 bok choy leaves
  • 3 stalks of lemongrass (bought at your local health food store), kitchen string to tie
  • 3 Tbsp. ginger, peeled & minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1/4 c. basil, chopped

Directions:

  1. Remove the hard outer shell of the lemongrass.  Cut into 2 inch-length pieces
  2. Press down with side of knife to open up the flavor.  Tie into a bundle with kitchen string IMG_1004
  3. Bring 5 c. water to a boil.  Chop the chicken into small cubes & add to the boiling water
  4. While the chicken is cooking bring 8 c. water to a boil in a different pot.
  5. Lower heat & add soba noodles, carrot, onion, green onion, garlic, ginger & lemon grass bundle
  6. Then chop the shiitake mushrooms & bok choy             IMG_1008
  7. Add the drained chicken, mushrooms, bok choy & soy sauce into the soup mixture IMG_1014
  8. Cook until soba noodles are done & bok choy is translucent

IMG_1018 Go here for my Hot & Sour Soup recipe

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Pork Spring Rolls

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This simple pork spring roll recipe is full of flavor and has the protein to fill you up and carry you through the day.

Ingredients:  Yields about 4 servings

  • 1 lb. pork loin cutlets
  • 1 head napa cabbage (about 3 c. shredded)
  • 1 small red bell pepper
  • 4 large romaine lettuce leaves
  • 1 Tbsp. asian fish sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
  • 2 tsp. fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • Sea salt & ground pepper

Directions: 

  1. In a large pan coat with olive oil and add pork cutlets.  Season with a little sea salt & pepper.
  2. Cook on medium high until one side of the pork is browned.
  3. Flip, turn heat down to medium-low, and cook until no longer pink, yet still juicy. Set asideIMG_5767
  4. Whisk together fish sauce, lime juice, ginger, garlic & red pepper flakes in  a small bowl
  5. Shred napa cabbage and slice red bell pepper into thin slices      IMG_5769IMG_5770
  6. Slice the pork into thin slices                                                                     IMG_5771
  7. Toss the pork with 1 tablespoon of dressing mixture                IMG_5774
  8. Toss the cabbage and red bell pepper with the remainder of the dressing                            IMG_5773
  9. Lay the romaine lettuce leaves on a plate and fill with cabbage mixture and pork.  Eat open-faced

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For my Vietnamese Spring Roll recipe, click HERE!

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Chicken with Ginger & Snow Peas

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Ingredients: 

  • 1 & 1/2 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 lb. snow peas
  • 2 sliced green onions
  • 1 & 1/2 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. minced ginger
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 & 1/2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

Directions: 

  1. Fill a medium bowl with ice and water
  2. Bring a medium pan of water to a boil
  3. Boil snow peas for 2 minutes, drain, and place in ice water to chill
  4. Combine 2 tsp. of olive oil with 1 Tbsp. of soy sauce & minced ginger in a small bowl
  5. Add chicken and toss to marinade
  6. In a large pan, coat with remainder of olive oil and add chicken
  7. Cook until chicken is slightly browned and no longer pink inside
  8. Transfer to cutting board and cube the chicken
  9. In a separate bowl, combine peas, scallions, sesame oil, & the remainder of soy sauce.  TossIMG_5733
  10. Serve chilled peas with chicken & serve

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White Fish topped with Olive Tapenade

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This is a quick, healthy & protein-filled meal.  It’s an easy go-to option if you don’t have much time to make a more complex meal.

Ingredients:

  • Filet of white fish: Halibut, tilapia, hake, cod, etc.
  • 3 Tbsp. olive tapenade of your choice: I usually get mine from Costco or Trader Joe’s
  • 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea salt & pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Line a cookie sheet with heavy duty foil coated with a little olive oil
  3. Place the fish filet on the foil and top with sea salt & pepper and  olive tapenade
  4. If frozen: Bake for about 20-25 min. or until fish is no longer translucent
  5. If fresh: Bake for about 15-20 min. or until fish is no longer translucent
  6. Serve with a vegetable side dish of your choosing & enjoy!

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There is nothing bland about this recipe even though it only consists of mainly 3 ingredients; enjoy this flavorful way to get fish into your diet!

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Asparagus & Goat Cheese Omelet

Omelets are an easy way to start your day off right with a protein filled breakfast in order to suppress cravings throughout the dayIMG_0981

Ingredients: 

  • 2 eggs or 1 egg + 1/4 c. egg whites
  • 8 asparagus stalks
  • 1/4 of a yellow onion
  • 1 Tbsp. goat cheese
  • 1 tsp. Extra virgin olive oil
  • Sea Salt & pepper to taste
  • Optional: Topped with chunky tomato salsa & avocado

Directions: 

  1. Snap asparagus stalks into smaller pieces & dice the onion
  2. Saute on medium-high heat until browned and asparagus are not longer tough
  3. Set aside onion and asparagus
  4. Whisk together the egg
  5. Add just enough olive oil to a small pan so that the eggs won’t stick
  6. Pour the egg into the pan
  7. Once the egg begins to cook along the edges, move the pan around to distribute the raw egg towards the edges; you can lift up the sides of the omelet and let the raw egg run underneath to get cooked
  8. When there’s only a little runny egg left, add the asparagus, onion, and goat cheese to the cente
  9. Take a spatula and flip one side of the omelet on top of the other to cover up the veggies
  10. Press down on top of the omelet to let the remainder of runny egg flow to the outside to cook
  11. Serve & top with avocado & salsa

IMG_0979Enjoy your beginning fuel for the day!

For another omelet idea click here

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Italian Turkey Meatball & Pappardelle Soup

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Homemade turkey meatballs are so simple to make and they are delicious in this healthy Italian soup

Ingredients: Yields about 8 (2c.) servings

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  • About 1 & 1/2 lbs. ground turkey
  • About 8 oz. pappardelle pasta
  • 1/2 c. Parsley
  • 1/2 Yellow onion
  • 3 Shallots
  • 2 Cloves of garlic
  • 1 & 1/2 c. Kale
  • 1 beaten egg white
  • 3 Tbsp. chicken bouillon
  • 2 Tbsp. Thyme
  • 1  tsp. Italian seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp. Extra virgin olive oil
  • Pinch of salt & pepper to taste

Directions: 

  1. Finely chop the parsley & dice the yellow onion IMG_0799
  2. Saute the onion until translucent & lightly browned

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    (I didn’t saute the onions for the first time I made this soup & I would have much rather had them sauteed)

  3. In a large bowl, combine turkey, egg white, sauteed onion, parsley,  salt & 1 Tbsp. thymeIMG_0800
  4. Roll turkey mixture into bite-sized meatballs.  Place in large pan coated with olive oilIMG_0801
  5. Saute until browned on sides and cooked through yet still juicy.  Set aside.  IMG_0806
  6. Mince the shallot & garlic.  Saute in a soup pot with a little olive oil until lightly brownedIMG_0810
  7. Bring 8 c. of water to a boil
  8. Add chicken bouillon, thyme, Italian seasoning & cracked black pepper IMG_0816
  9. Add pappardelle pasta. Cook on medium-high until cooked al dente (still firm) about 20 min IMG_0817
  10. Add kale & turkey meatballs.  Cook until kale is wilted
  11. Serve & enjoy

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I normally steer clear from all white carbs, however, I will occasionally make an exception for the pappardelle pasta.  It has such a great texture and is perfect for this healthy Italian-style soup.

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Hot & Sour Soup

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I probably crave Chinese food more than any other type of food.  It is my kind of comfort food so I’m excited to bring a healthy rendition of Hot & Sour soup to the menu!

I never attempt to cook traditional Chinese food because usually the ingredients must be bought from an Asian market, and there isn’t one near me.  However, the ingredients for this healthy Hot & Sour soup can be bought at any grocery store.

Ingredients: Yields about 8 (2 c. servings)

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  • 2 Tbsp. Chicken bouillon
  • 6 oz. Shiitake mushrooms
  • 3/4  Yellow onion
  • 1 & 1/2 Tbsp. Grated ginger
  • 1 package firm/extra firm tofu
  • 2 Carrots
  • 2 Green onions or scallions
  • 2 eggs + 2 egg whites
  • 5 Tbsp. Low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp. Red wine vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. Rice vinegar
  • 1 & 1/2 tsp. sesame oil
  • Cayenne pepper to taste (for spiciness)
  • Ground black pepper to taste

Directions: 

  1. Slice the mushrooms &  yellow onion.  I never chop the stems off the mushrooms IMG_0770
  2. In a medium soup pot, saute the mushrooms & onion with sesame oil until slightly brown IMG_0775
  3. Add 8 cups of water into the pot and bring to a boil
  4. Grate the ginger.  First shave off the outer skin with a carrot shredder then grate the ginger on a cheese grater.   Thinly chop the green onions/scallions.  Shred the carrotsIMG_0778
  5. Turn down heat. Add chicken bouillon to the broth then add carrots, scallions, & ginger IMG_0780
  6. Add the soy sauce, red wine vinegar, rice vinegar, cayenne, and pepper.
  7. Beat the eggs & egg whites together.  Slowly pour the egg into the soup IMG_0782
  8. Chop the tofu into cubes and add to the soup.  Continue cooking until tofu is heated.

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This dish does not contain corn starch which is what makes the soup thick in a Chinese restaurant.  Without it, the soup is healthier and it turned out to taste very similar to the traditional Hot & Sour soup without the thick consistency.  The tofu and egg adds protein which makes this meal more filling.  Enjoy!

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