Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Very Berry Protein Waffles

Confession: I did not eat anything but my Banana Bread Psylium Pancakes with PB2 sauce for a solid 12 days in a row. Obsessed? Yes. Whenever I make something I like, I become an addict for a good 2 weeks. These waffles ended my streak, and they were delicious enough to require posting. I don't usually blend fruit into my pancake and waffles batters because I like to keep them lower in carbohydrates so I can top them with fresh fruit, yogurt, etc. I was really excited that I was able to keep the fruit content low for this recipe, but still get the "very berry" flavor I was aiming for. However, you can add more if you prefer. The waffles were fluffy, flavorful and very satisfying! Who doesn't love digging into a fluffy tower of waffles?!

Very Berry Protein Waffles


1/4 cup Egg Beaters
2 tablespoons unsweetened Almond milk
12 blueberries
1 sliced strawberry
1/2 banana
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1 tablespoon coconut flour
1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Cinnamon to taste
Truvia to taste


1. Mix or blend the egg beaters, milk, and fruit. Add dry ingredients and blend or mix well.
2. Pour batter into hot waffle maker.
3. Top with your favorite toppings! I layered mine with Greek yogurt, sugar free syrup, and fresh sliced fruit :)

 Serves 1

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Vegetarian Meatloaf

I searched long and hard for a Boca meatloaf recipe that didn't call for breadcrumbs or oatmeal . . . and didn't really find any. So, I played around and substituted 1/4 cup of oat bran for the 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs that the original recipe called for. Divided this pretty loaf into four- each under 200 calories.  I was afraid it wouldn't bind as well without the breadcrumbs, but I was pleasantly surprised . . . and it tasted even better cold the next day!

Here's my modified recipe:

Vegetarian Meatloaf


1 package frozen BOCA Veggie Ground Crumbles (or Morningstar)
1/4 cup oat bran
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 cup Egg Beaters
1/2 cup BBQ sauce


1. Heat oven to 350°F. Microwave crumbles in medium microwaveable bowl on HIGH 1-1/2 min.
2. Add all remaining ingredients; mix lightly. Let stand 5-10 min.
3. Shape into loaf in 8-inch pie plate.
4. Bake 35 min. or until center is done.

Banana Bread Psylium Protein Pancakes with PB2 Sauce

I LOVE all of the pancakes that I've posted. I especially LOVE the ones that call for the least amount of ingredients and preparation, because:

#1: I'm SUPER busy
#2: Less ingredients = More $ in my pocket
#3: Easier to remember so I can prepare "on the fly"

So, I was very interested in trying Cassey's recipe which called for four ingredients: protein powder, eggs, water (or milk), and psyllium husk. I found the recipe right before I was getting ready for bed, so I decided to make the batter and leave it in the fridge overnight. I had a feeling that I would wake up to a really thick batter in the morning (psyllium husk absorbs A LOT of liquid) . . . and I was right. I wound up adding a lot of water and the pancakes were a little on the rubbery side.

Finally got it right the next day, although slightly modified from Cassey's recipe. I used banana flavored protein powder, but any flavor works. This recipe is so flexible- there are endless combinations of flavors and additions (fruit, peanut butter, butternut squash, pumpkin, etc.). I LOVED these:

Banana Bread Psylium Pancakes


1 scoop Banana Flavored Whey Protein Powder
1 tablespoon pyslium husk
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon sugar-free vanilla pudding mix (optional, but recommended)
Truvia to taste
Cinnamon to taste (I like a lot!)
1/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
3 tablespoon egg beaters
1 teaspoon vanilla
Banana slices (optional)


1. Mix together dry ingredients in a small bowl.
2. Whisk together the egg beaters, almond milk, and vanilla.
3. Mix wet ingredients into dry ingredients. Do not overmix.
4. Add batter to a HOT pan coated with cooking spray. If using the banana slices, put in the center of each pancake. Flip when the pancake "sets" and bubbles start to form. Cook until the other side is done.
5. EAT!!!

I made a peanut butter syrup with PB2, water, and a little Truvia and drizzled it right on top. SO YUM!!

I'll post the nutrition facts soon- but the whole thing is fiber and protein packed and only about 220-ish calories!

I've seriously made these for a week and a half straight. Here are some other variations:

Strawberry Cheesecake:

Substitute with sugar-free cheesecake pudding mix and vanilla protein powder. Add sliced strawberries instead of banana. Leave out the cinnamon. Serve with layers of Truvia sweetened Greek yogurt and sugar free syrup. 

Lemon Blueberry:

Substitute with sugar-free lemon pudding mix and vanilla protein powder. Add blueberries instead of banana. Leave out the cinnamon. Serve with layers of Truvia sweetened Greek yogurt and sugar-free syrup.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Miso Glazed Scallops with Wasabi Mased Cauliflower and Edamame

This was one of the most AMAZING meals I've ever made. It was one of those meals that after you take the first bite your taste buds do a happy dance . . . and you vow to make the dish again and again for as long as you live. Well, that's what happened to me earlier this evening. This dish will definitely be a staple on my weekly menu. Whether it be scallops, cod, chilean sea bass, or salmon- this miso-glaze is going on something at least once a week!!

Now for the side:  I've made mashed cauliflower before, but I haven't done it in a really long time. For some odd reason, the process of mashed cauliflower-making seems so labor-intensive and I think that's why I never do it. Wash, cut, steam, blend, season....It's weird because I cook and bake much more intensive meals and snacks than this simple side dish. So, I really don't understand my logic. In any case, I took on the challenge tonight because the thought of making it Asian-style by adding wasabi and edamame sounded exciting. Plus, I cheated a bit and bought a steamer bag of cauliflower so I didn't have to chop and steam and make a mess. I had many other meals going on at once so I had to make something easy! After I steamed the bag I added it to my Ninja food processor with about 2/3 cup steamed edamame (I bought frozen shelled edamame and steamed it in the microwave also), 1 T wasabi powder and about 1/4 fat free sour cream and some salt to taste. YUM.

Miso-Glazed Scallops 

Adapted from Eating Well's Healthy in a Hurry Cookbook


3 T white miso
2 T mirin (I used a cheap bottle of sake from the liquor store)
2 T rice vinegar
2 T canola oil
1 t minced fresh ginger
1 t minced garlic
1 pound sea scallops (I got fresh wild sea scallops at my local fish store)


1. Whisk miso, mirin, vinegar, oil, ginger, and garlic in a medium bowel. Add scallops and stir gently to coat. Let marinate 5 minutes (scallops will begin to break down if marinated longer)

2. Heat a non-stick pan with non-stick spray (or use a little olive oil) over medium-high heat. Add the scallops and cook until golden brown, about 3 minutes each side.

The cookbook version serves this with soba noodles and says to reserve the marinade to make a sauce for them. I obviously didn't do this, but you can maybe add a little marinade at the end and let it reduce to drizzle over the scallops. However, I wouldn't change anything I did- they were amazing! You may want to double up on the marinade and keep some on hand on the fridge . . . you WILL want to make this again.

On a side note, today was the first day of my clinical rotation as a dietetic intern. It was just an orientation day, but I was still really anxious about going. I'm freaking myself out because I am prone to passing out. It seems as though hospital settings and I have trouble getting along. The good news is, I felt better after I met everyone I'd be working with (they are all super nice!). One of the dietitians was actually in one of my classes last semester. It was a huge relief to talk to her because she said she is just like me with the queasy stomach and blood intolerance. She promised it wasn't as bad as I thought and if she could do it, I could do it. I am determined to get through this and get over my passing out nonsense. Any who, I started my very first day with a deliciously healthy breakfast: 1 slice of Ezekiel Flaxseed bread with avocado slices and a poached egg. I wanted to post this to remind everyone that healthy, satisfying, nutritious meals can be really simple and easy to make!

And image quote of the day?

Interested to hear.... any takers?

Monday, January 7, 2013

Tofu Protein Bars

Do not let the title of this post scare you. I was originally going to call it "Banana Protein Bars" since tofu tends to scare people away. Maybe it's because most people are unfamiliar with tofu, or they only know it as the "mushy stuff" in their miso soup? Well, it shouldn't be that way. Tofu is so versatile and takes on the flavor of whatever it's made with. Not too many protein foods have that talent. Tofu shouldn't be the "secret" or "hidden" ingredient in a recipe. I know in the past I wouldn't tell anyone that I made something with tofu in fear that they might not try it. Take it or leave it. These protein bars were made with TOFU and they are freaking delish.

I decided to use tofu because I had some leftover after I made my miso dressing a few days back. I figured it would be a great replacement for something like pumpkin, squash, cottage cheese, yogurt, etc., for a protein bar. After some initial research, I found a random forum that posted a tofu protein bar recipe. They claimed they found it on www.bodybuilding.com, but I couldn't find it on the site. I modified the recipe a bit and came up with this winner:

Tofu Banana Protein Bars


3/4 cup (6 oz) Light Silken Tofu (I used Naysoya, doesn't have to be "light")
1/4 cup Vanilla Protein Powder (I used Isopure Zero Carb Creamy Vanilla)
1/2 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup milk (I used unsweetened almond)
3 T sugar free banana pudding mix (called for 1 package, but I already used 1 T so I just used what was left)


Preheat your oven to 325. Put everything into a blender and mix really well. Spray a small loaf pan with non-stick spray and pour your batter in.

Bake for about 20-30 minutes.

I let the loaf sit and cool, then sliced it into 4 bars.

Nutrition Facts (One Bar): 111 Calories, 11.5 g CHO, 1.1 g Fiber, 1.8 g Fat, 12.7 g Pro, 0.3 g Sugar

Added Bonus: This bar packs 24% Vitamin A, 28% Calcium, and 17% Iron!!! (Based on the RDA for a 2,000 calorie diet)

And here's my chocolate version:

Chocolate Tofu Protein Bars: Substitute with sugar-free chocolate pudding mix and chocolate protein powder.

The variations are endless!

Random last thought- I've been loving image quotes lately. Short, sweet, and inspirational quotes that are also pretty to look at. Image quote for today:

Friday, January 4, 2013

Popular News Stories 2012: Pink Slime

One of my nutrition-related listservs recently sent me an e-mail about the most talked about food news stories of 2012. Included on the list was the pink slime controversy. I covered this topic in an article I wrote during my community rotation as a dietetic intern, so I thought I'd share :) 
                                            What is Pink Slime?

The meat industry calls it “lean finely textured beef”, but it’s more commonly known as “pink slime”. So what is it? Pink slime is a ground beef filler that is made from fatty trimmings of the cow- a combination of beef scraps and connective tissue.  These fatty trimmings are more likely to contain bacteria than the other parts of the cow so it is treated with ammonia to remove pathogens such as salmonella and E. coli. The entire process involves simmering the beef scraps low heat to separate the fat from the muscle, separating the meat in a centrifuge, and spraying it with ammonia gas. The resulting product is packaged and sold to stores and meat packers, where it is added to most ground beef. It is estimated that about 70 percent of our ground beef supply contains pink slime.

The term “pink slime” was first used by Gerald Zirnstein, a former USDA scientist who had been assigned to investigate whether or not the product met federal regulations. Zirnstein expressed his disgust about the product in a private e-mail to a colleague by calling it “pink slime”. His e-mail became viral and the term was quickly picked up and used by consumers.  


Unfortunately, you won’t find the word “pink slime” on any nutrition labels. The ammonium hydroxide that is used to sanitize the beef scraps is considered a “processing aid” which is not required by U.S. regulators to be included on food labels. According to Roger Clemens, president of the Institute of Food Technologists, “If it helps facilitate a process and it’s used at a percent less than 1 percent, it doesn’t have to be declared on the label.”


In response to public outcry, fast food restaurants like McDonald's, Taco Bell and Burger King have stopped using pink slime in their food. Food blogger Bettina Elias Siegel started an online petition on her website, The Lunch Tray, to stop the USDA from using the product in school lunches. The enormous response from the public caused the USDA to release a statement this past March saying that they “will provide schools with a choice to order product either with or without Lean Finely Textured Beef…"

This is not the first time consumers have question the safety of our food supply. We can only hope that increased awareness and concern can help to change the rules of food labeling so that we can make informed choices about our food choices. 

Creamy Miso Dressing

I wasn't too excited about the last miso dressing I made for my kale salad, so I came up with a really delicious one the other day. I adapted it from www.eatingwell.com: 

1/2 cup Light Silken Tofu (Any silken tofu works)
2 T Rice Vinegar
3 Tablespoons Miso paste
1/4 cup water
1 1/2 t ground ginger
1 1/2 t flaxseed oil (any neutral oil will work)
1 garlic clove, crushed

Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Done :)

For about 2 Tablespoons: 40 calories, 5 g carbs, 1 g fat, 1 g protein

Served this with fresh organic arugula, miso-baked sweet potato, asian baked tofu, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, and avocado. Absolutely delicious!