Foodie In Training

Monday, October 29, 2007

Solid Food!

This weekend was a wonderful weekend at home filled with great food (solid, not soup!) and family. We arrived Friday evening and met Ryan's parents at the Four Monks for a late dinner. I was able to eat a HUGE entree of lasagna and it was sooo good. I love home-made, authentic lasagna. Italian food is probably my favorite type of food and I've been missing it since my jaw problems started.
Saturday night the Stookey women resurrected an old family tradition where the we got together and made finger sandwiches for a family members bridal shower. It was so great to get together with my grandma's, aunts and a few cousins and make the sandwiches. They consisted of a layer of egg salad, a layer of bologna salad, and a layer of cream cheese (colored green with food coloring!). A slice of a wheat or white bread separates each layer. I was skeptical at first because they look a little crazy, but they were so good and they were a hit the next day at the bridal shower.
I hope we can continue this tradition because it was great to get everyone together and we had so much fun making them.

Friday, October 26, 2007

I heart Soup

I think that's what I have to keep telling myself, because getting tired of soup. I had really good Tortilla Chicken Soup last night with the girls. I got the recipe from the Self Dishes magazine. Self Magazine put out an entire magazine devoted to healthy and tasty recipes. I've tried a few of them and they are great! And it's just nice to know it is going to be pretty healthy too.
Here is the recipe, it was pretty easy and it's always fun to cook with friends. :)

1 whole bone-in, skinless chicken breast (about 12 oz)
6 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 tbsp olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 jalapeño pepper, finely chopped
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
8 baked tortilla chips

1/2 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 cup canned corn
1/2 avocado, cubed
1 handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tsp kosher salt
1 lime, halved

Poach chicken in 2 cups of the broth in a large pot over very low heat until cooked through, about 20 minutes from when broth reaches a simmer. Remove chicken from broth; set aside. Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook onion, garlic and jalapeño until onion is translucent, 3 to 5 minutes. Add tomatoes; simmer 1 minute. Strain poaching broth; add it and remaining 4 cups broth to saucepan. Bring to a boil. Combine first 5 salsa ingredients in a bowl; add juice of 1 lime half; slice other half into 4 wedges. Shred chicken into bite-size pieces. When soup boils, lower heat to medium and add chicken. Simmer 1 minute. Season with salt. Ladle soup into 4 bowls. Top each with 1/4 of the salsa and sprinkle with 2 crumbled tortilla chips. Squeeze 1 lime wedge over each bowl of soup and serve.

The dish 323 calories per serving, 10.4 g fat (1.9 g saturated), 5.3 g fiber, 29.3 g carbs, 32 g protein

At first I thought the recipe looked involved, but it was really easy! My friend Mo had a little trouble slicing the avocado's but Mary and I showed her how it's done. :) It was a great girls night as usual.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Red Sauce

I thought I'd elaborate on my sauce I made with my ravioli's because it is so quick and easy. Here's what you'll need:
can of diced tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, diced (the more the better in my opinion)
red onion, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
any herbs you have on hand, fresh is always best but dry is good too.
I like to use basil, crushed red pepper and sometimes parsley flakes.
Depending on what I have in my kitchen, I'll often add a special ingredient like capers or sun-dried tomatoes.

Add a little bit of olive oil to a large saute pan and saute the onions. Add salt while your onions are cooking, it brings out the flavor of the onions. Once onions are soft add the garlic and then add the diced tomatoes. Let that cook for a few minutes together and then add the herbs. That's pretty much it. The simpler the better. If you want to thicken the sauce you can always add tomato paste, but remember a little bit goes a long way.
Always remember to taste your sauce as you go along and add things sparingly at first, you can always add more but you can never take spices out.

Tonight I'm making Tortilla Chicken Soup with the girls and watching Grey's Anatomy, I'll report back on how the soup tastes.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Jaws, part 2

I haven't been posting recently because I'm still have problems with my jaw. So I'm still mostly eating soup. I've graduated up to chunkier soups, chili, ravioli's, egg salad and the occasional pasta salad. This is getting old but hopefully I'm on the mend and can start eating normally again. I helped my mom make chili this weekend so I finally got to have my chunky chili! My mom bought some of that Boca Burger meat and we used that instead of meat. It was kind of chewy but it didn't change the taste of the chili. I'm not sure I'd use it again, but it was worth a try.

Last night I had my friend Mary came over and I made whole wheat ravioli with my tomato sauce. Nothing fancy, just canned diced tomatoes with some seasonings and fresh herbs. It was a nice simple meal and a wonderful change from soup. Thanks for coming over Mary!

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Hello my very few readers. Posts have been sparce because I've been a busy and I've been having jaw problems, so I haven't been able to eat many solid foods the past few days. It really stinks because it makes you crave all the foods you can't have. And it doesn't really make me want to make chili which is what I was planning to do this weekend.

On a related note, the Tomato Bisque soup from Wild Oats is amazing.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Fish Dish

I made a really tasty and pretty healthy dinner for myself on Tuesday night. I got the recipe from a magazine and the instructions looked so easy I thought I'd give it a whirl. The meal literally took me 20 minutes. It is called Mustard Dill fish. I used catfish filets which is what the recipe called for, but I think any type of whitefish would do. The marinade was just dijon mustard, dill and olive oil. I'm sure you could spice it up even more by adding your own herbs and spices, which I plan to do next time. Usually for first time recipes I like to stick to it as much as I can (unless I don't have an ingredient and must substitute) and then add my own flair the next time.

In food television news, I have a new favorite show on the Food Network that I like. The Next Iron Chef. First of all, I love Alton Brown so anything with him as the host is bound to be good. The first episode was this week and I think it's going to be a good show! The first challenge was testing their skills, they had to de-bone a chicken, filet a salmon, and produce paper thin slices of daikon. I just love watching pro chefs and their knife skills and technique. My goal is life is to be a fast chopper. :) The show also increased my growing foodie knowledge, because I had no idea what daikon was. I just looked it up and it is a white radish commonly used in japanese cooking. So now you know too!

Also, there is a chef from Cleveland on the show...Michael Symon from Lola and Lolita, two restaurants I've been wanting to experience. Cleveland represent!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007


It's not very cold yet in Cincinnati (much to my anger and dismay) but I've decided to get in to the fall spirit anyway and make chili this week.
I doubt I have any readers yet, but I'm looking for a good recipe. I've never made it before. I have a recipe for black bean lime chili, but it is a healthy, modified version that is served over couscous, so it doesn't really count. I'm talking chunky, full of beans and spices chili.
Maybe if I make chili, the cold weather will arrive...kind of like "if you make it, they will come" theory. I can only hope!

So, if you have a good chili recipe, send it my way, I'd love to try it out.

Oh yea, here is a recipe for the black bean lime chili...It's from the Food Network web site. I'm just going to copy it below. For some reason, providing a link is not working.

Black Bean Lime Chili
Recipe courtesy Juan-Carlos Cruz
Show: Weighing In
Episode: Tour Guides
1 cup water
2/3 cup couscous
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 Vidalia onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 (14-ounce) can stewed tomatoes
1 (15-ounce) can black beans
1 (10-ounce) can white meat chicken, or 2 cups shredded chicken, store-bought, skin discarded
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (from about 3 limes)
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves

Bring 1 cup water to a boil in a small saucepan and then pour in the couscous in one steady stream. Stir to prevent lumps. Turn off the heat, cover, and set aside for 15 minutes. Once liquid is absorbed, fluff with a fork.

In a heavy-bottomed pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until soft. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add bell peppers and chili powder and cook for another minute. Stir in tomatoes and black beans and their liquid; bring all to a simmer and simmer for 5 minutes or until thickened. Add chicken and heat through. Stir in lime juice and cilantro and remove from heat. Serve over fluffed couscous.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Welcome Wagon

Welcome to my blog!!

While thinking of what to write for my very first post, something bad happened. Ryan and I made burgers tonight and it was my job to slice and get out the condiments. Well, after easily chopping up onions and tomatoes I sliced the fresh jalepenos...I think I got some juice or a seed under my fingernail, because just scrached a cut on my lip and licked my fingernail and my whole mouth is on fire...and I don't like spicy stuff.

So while my mouth is burning, I'll tell you that the point of this blog is to report my adventures in food. I love to cook, try new recipes and new ingredients. Ryan and I also like to eat out and try new restaurants. We like to call ourselve (well at least I do) Foodie's in training.

I'll probably add in a few random thoughts every now and then.