Saturday, October 31, 2009

Market Haul

This is what $30 gets you at the downtown Phoenix Public Market. I got about 8 lbs of apples, three pomegranates, a few bell peppers, roma and heirloom cherry tomatoes, a zucchini, yellow summer squash, lettuce, two bunches of bok choy, basil, fennel, a leek, a couple of onions, a few red potatoes, a bag of roasted green chilis, and fresh, shelled black eyed peas.

Look for recipes that feature these fine veggies this week.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Chicken vegetable soup

Approx. 220 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

When I woke up this morning, I had a terrible headache, chills, and general feeling of malaise. I decided not to go to work in case I was coming down with the flu and also decided to throw together a pot of chicken soup before crawling back under the 4 blankets that were on my bed.

For the chicken, I just bought boneless skinless breast meat that was already cut into strips. I just added the full strips, and then once the dish was done cooking, teased apart the meat with a fork to make smaller pieces. This minimizes how much I have to handle the raw meat. The jalapeno I added was pretty mild, so it gave the soup a nice flavor without the kick.

My crock pot is very small (4 cup capacity) and I ran out of room before I could add the green beans and squash. This was a good thing, since I added them about a half hour before serving and they retained their color and a bit of firmness. This gave the soup more color and texture.


  • 6 oz boneless skinless chicken breast
  • 1 cup red potatoes
  • 1 medium leek (approx. 1/2 cup)
  • 2/3 cup carrots
  • 1/2 cup green beans (I used frozen)
  • 1/2 cup yellow summer squash
  • 1 large jalapeno pepper
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/8 tsp dried basil
  • 2 bay leaves
  • water
  • salt and pepper to taste

  1. Clean and chop leeks, carrots, potatoes, and the jalapeno pepper (I included seeds).
  2. Add to crock pot.
  3. Add chicken.
  4. Add spices. Cover with water.
  5. Heat on low/medium for about 8 hours.
  6. About 30 min before serving, add squash and green beans.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Garlic Bok Choy

Approx. 230 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 1 serving.

With Halloween coming up, I didn't want to take any chances running into a vampire, so I decided to load up on the garlic. What's in this dish should protect me for at least another month.
This dish serves two as a side dish, or makes a single generous portion if it is the entire meal.

  • 4 cups bok choy (stems and leaves)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup snow peas
  • 1/3 cup bell pepper (red)
  • 1/2 Tbs low sodium soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs olive oil

  1. Wash and chop bok choy.
  2. Chop snow peas and bell pepper.
  3. Add crushed garlic and oil to a cold frying pan. Heat the pan.
  4. Once the garlic starts to brown, add the bok choy, snow peas, and red pepper.
  5. Once the bok choy wilts, add the soy sauce.
  6. Mix well and then serve.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Sole and Salsa

Approx. 225 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 1 serving.

I had the remaining sole to use up tonight. I thought about making my favorite standbys - either fish soup or chili lime sole, but thought I would try something new. I originally started with the intent to make a Veracruz type of sauce for the fish, but didn't have any capers or green olives, so gave up on that, and just tossed in what I did have. This isn't the most inspired dish, but that didn't stop me from cleaning my plate.


  • 4 oz. dover sole
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion
  • 1 cup Roma tomatoes
  • 1 key lime
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 2 tsp salsa
  • 1 cup water

  1. Add water to a frying pan and bring to boil.
  2. Add sole and top with thinly sliced onion and juice from the lime.
  3. Cook for 1-2 minutes on each side or until sole is cooked.
  4. Place cooked sole on bed of fresh spinach.
  5. Heat salsa and tomatoes in the same frying pan, until tomatoes release juices and get soft.
  6. Top fish with salsa/tomato mixture.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Thai Red Curry Sole

Approx. 360 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 1 serving.

I was craving Thai red curry tonight, but wasn't really in the mood for chicken, so I made a quick trip to the grocery store. I picked up some Dover sole at the grocery store. Usually, I only buy a quarter of a pound and use it all up the same day, but there wasn't any behind the meat counter and I had to buy a half pound package. I guess I will be having fish for dinner again tomorrow night. At least it saved me from having the meat guy ask if I was buying it for a cat! He always looks shocked when I tell him I'm buying it for dinner.

If you serve this recipe with rice, it is probably big enough for two servings, and you probably would want to leave a little more water in the sauce. I was really hungry tonight (and it was very tasty!), so I ate it as shown (without rice). I was very full when I was done, but not too full for dessert. I finished my meal with a bowl of frozen cherries (I like to eat them frozen). It worked perfectly to cool the spice.

  • 4 cups baby eggplant (approx. 1/2 lb)
  • 4 oz. dover sole
  • 1/4 cup yellow onion
  • 1/2 cup green onion
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tsp. Thai red curry paste
  • 2 cups water

  1. Slice yellow onion into thin strips and cut each baby eggplant in half.
  2. Add 1 cup water to a skillet and bring to boil.
  3. Add eggplant, yellow onion and curry paste.
  4. Cook until eggplant is almost soft.
  5. Add coconut milk and remaining water and cook until eggplant is soft.
  6. Add fish and cook for approx. 2 minutes on each side, or until fish is cooked and most of the water has evaporated off.
  7. Add green onions and mix to coat with curry sauce.
  8. Serve alone or with rice.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Teriyaki Beef

Approx. 350 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

  • 6 oz top round steak
  • 2 cups summer squash
  • 1 1/2 cup bell pepper (green, red, and yellow)
  • 1/2 cup onion
  • 3/4 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 1/2 Tbs teriyaki sauce
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

  1. Marinate sliced beef in 2 Tbs of the teriyaki sauce for at least 15 minutes.
  2. In a frying pan, head crushed garlic and olive oil.
  3. Add beef and sliced onion and bell pepper.
  4. Cook until beef is medium rare, then add the squash and red pepper flakes.
  5. Cook until beef is done and toss with remaining teriyaki sauce.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Potato Leek Soup

Approx. 180 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

Even though it's been warm out during the day (high 90s) it has been cooling down at night and actually feels like fall. To celebrate the cool evenings, I decided to make this soup to keep me warm on the inside. I added quite a bit of red pepper flakes to spice it up, but that's an optional ingredient.

  • 2 cups red potatoes (with skin)
  • 1 leek (approx. 1 cup)
  • 3 cups water (or enough to cover potatoes to boil)
  • 1/8 cup diced bell pepper (for garnish)
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes (or to taste)
  • black pepper, to taste
  • salt, to taste

  1. Wash and chop vegetables.
  2. Add potatoes and leek to water and boil until potatoes are soft.
  3. Add spices to taste.
  4. Blend (I used an immersion blender).
  5. Serve and garnish with diced bell pepper.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Artichoke bean salad

Approx. 80 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 8 (potluck sized) servings.

A friend was having a birthday party/bbq and I thought this would be a nice side dish to bring. I brought about half of it back home, so I guess it wasn't as appealing to everyone else as it was to me.


  • 1 can garbanzo beans
  • 1 can artichoke hearts (not marinated)
  • 1/3 cup bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup red onion
  • 2 cups zucchini
  • 15 leaves basil
  • 2 Tbs balsamic vinegar dressing (I used fat free)
  • 1 Tbs balsamic vinegar


  1. Open cans and rinse beans and artichokes.
  2. Add to bowl with chopped vegetables.
  3. Toss with dressing and vinegar.
  4. Add chopped basil and serve.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Vegetable beef soup

Approx. 275 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

The weather temporarily cooled down for a little while and it felt like fall, so I pulled out the crock pot and made this dish. It's basically beef stew, but instead of serving it in gravy, I like it served in broth as a soup.

  • 5 oz top round steak
  • 1 1/2 cup red potatoes
  • 1/3 cup celery (I used bok choy stems because I was out of celery)
  • 1/2 cup onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • black pepper, to taste
  • red pepper flakes, to taste (I add a lot because I like it spicy)
  • salt, to taste
  1. Chop vegetables.
  2. Add meat, vegetables, and spices to crock pot.
  3. Cover with water.
  4. Heat on low/medium for at least 8 hours.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Italian chicken and vegetables

Approx. 130 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

I went to the Wednesday night farmer's market today, and loaded up on zucchini, bok choy, heirloom cherry tomatoes, along with an assortment of other vegetables. I normally would use spinach in this dish, but I took the bok choy stems for the soup I plan to make tomorrow night (I forgot that I didn't have any celery) and wanted to use up the leaves tonight.

  • 4 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 3 cups bok choy leaves
  • 2 cups zucchini
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes (3 colors)
  • 1/3 cup onion
  • 1/4 cup fresh basil
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
  • dried oregano, to taste
  • black pepper, to taste


  1. Chop vegetables.
  2. Heat water, crushed garlic, and chicken.
  3. Once chicken is cooked, cut into pieces and add back to pan.
  4. Add onion, zucchini, and remaining spices.
  5. Cook until zucchini is just tender.
  6. Add bok choy (or spinach) and tomatoes.
  7. Heat until both are warm and bok choy wilts.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Beef stir fry

Approx. 310 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

This recipe is almost identical to the beef broccoli that I made in the past. I basically just used mushrooms instead of bell pepper, and then I garnished it with sesame seeds.


  • 4 oz. beef (top round steak)
  • 3 cups broccoli (stems and florets)
  • 1/2 cup onion
  • 2 cups mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 Tbs olive oil
  • 2 Tbs spicy ginger teriyaki sauce (I used East West brand)
  • 1/8 tsp toasted sesame seeds (I bought them already toasted)
  • red pepper flakes, to taste

  1. Marinate the beef in 1 Tbs teriyaki sauce for at least 15 minutes.
  2. Chop vegetables.
  3. Add oil, red pepper flakes, and pressed garlic to a cold pan.
  4. Warm pan to saute garlic.
  5. Add onions and beef.
  6. Once beef is almost cooked all the way through, add mushrooms.
  7. Cook for 2-3 more minutes.
  8. Add water and broccoli.
  9. Cook until broccoli is tender, but not mushy and water boils off.
  10. Add remaining teriyaki sauce and coat all other ingredients.
  11. Plate and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Refried bean salad

Approx. 130 Calories per serving. Recipe serves 3.

Today I continue my theme of nearly effortless "Mexican" inspired dishes. Basically I jazzed up a can of refried beans, and then served it on a salad for one meal, wrapped it in a tortilla for a burrito for another meal, and then just ate the 3rd serving plain and with a spoon. You can add salsa, olives, cheese, or whatever else makes you happy.

  • 1 can refried beans (I used Rosarita No Fat Zesty Salsa)
  • 1/4 cup green onion
  • 1/3 cup bell pepper (I used yellow)

  1. Microwave the refried beans.
  2. Add diced bell pepper and green onion.
  3. Serve in a burrito, on nachos, on a salad, etc.

The actual salad consists of 2 cups chopped green leaf lettuce, 1 medium tomato, half an avocado, and 1 serving of the refried beans (beans served warm). The salad as shown has approx. 300 Calories.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Shredded salsa chicken

Approx. 150 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 4 servings.

This shredded chicken recipe is similar to what yesterday's beef looked like when shredded. It's very simple to make and is tasty served warm or cold on a salad.

I used a red salsa when making this dish, but I've also made it with a green salsa. When I use the green salsa, I also like to toss 2 cups of chopped spinach into the crock pot with the other ingredients.

  • 14 oz boneless, skinless chicken breast
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper

  1. Pour 1/4 cup salsa in bottom of the crockpot.
  2. Add chicken and diced bell pepper.
  3. Top with the remaining salsa.
  4. Heat on low for at least 8 hours.
  5. Shred chicken and mix well with salsa in crock pot.
  6. Serve on a salad (as shown) or in tacos, burritoes, on nachos, etc.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Southwestern beef

Approx. 230 Calories per serving. Recipe makes 2 servings.

For the last couple of weeks I have been glued to my computer at work all day, editing documents, so the last place I wanted to be was in front of my computer when I got home. Some of what I've cooked lately are repeat recipes that are already posted, and some consisted of nothing more than dumping a few ingredients into the crock pot.

For this recipe, I ate the first serving as shown in the picture. With the left over serving, I shredded the beef and ate it in a burrito.


  • 6 oz top round steak (cut into 2 pieces)
  • 1 cup green bell pepper
  • 1 can Ro*tel diced tomatoes and green chilies.

  1. Pour 1/3 of the can of tomatoes/chilis into the crock pot.
  2. Add meat and diced bell peppers.
  3. Cover with the rest of the canned tomatoes/chilis.
  4. Cook 8 or more hours on low heat.