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Sunday, January 2, 2011

A New Year and New Recipes

Happy New Year!   

I hope your Christmas and New Year's celebrations were fun and blessed times with loved ones.  The Pardoes enjoyed much time with family and friends and have thoroughly enjoyed our vacation time.  It's back to "normal" around here tomorrow though!

As some of you may remember, we are attempting to eat a bit healthier around here due to existing health challenges or ones that seem to be impending (age is so wonderful, 'eh?).  I'm going to share with you three new recipes we tried over the holidays.  I love the Orange Bran Flax Muffins!  I'm alone in that apparently, but then I do live with three particular eaters.  The Parmesan Crusted Chicken Tenders were a big hit with everyone and the Baked Pita Chips were a hit  I finally found something I can eat with hummus!  Speaking of hummus, if anyone has a homemade recipe for hummus, I'd love it if you'd share it with me.  Making it at home has to be less expensive than buying it in the store (right?).

In fact, if you have a healthy recipe you and your family love, won't you link up below?  I'd love to expand my recipe book with some delicious and healthy recipes and I'm sure others would too!  Thank you!

Orange Bran Flax Muffins

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • 1 1/2 cups oat bran or oatmeal
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 cup flaxseed, ground
  • 1 cup wheat bran
  • 1 Tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
  • 2 oranges - quartered and seeded - don't peel
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup canola oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cups golden or regular raisins
Combine oat bran (or oatmeal), flour, wheat bran, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

In a blender:  combine the oranges, brown sugar, buttermilk, oil, eggs, and baking soda.  Blend well.  Just a quick note here - if your blender is a simple design and not a commercial brand - just use the pulse function to blend the ingredients until the oranges are broken down into smaller pieces.  Otherwise the blender might struggle a bit with the bulk of the oranges.  I did this with mine and it worked perfectly.

Pour the orange mixture into the bowl with the dry ingredient mixture.  Mix well.  (I used my mixer for this, but it could be done by hand too.)

Fold in the raisins.  I imagine any dried fruit could be used in place of the raisins - dried cranberries, dried pineapple, or dried cherries, but since I haven't tried it, this is just my humble opinion.

Fill 24 muffin tins and bake for 18 to 20 minutes.  Cool in pans for about 5 minutes and then remove to wire racks to cool completely.

You could always 1/2 this recipe for 12 muffins too!

Recipe Resource:  (Please don't be alarmed at the title - I have discovered that some of the healthiest recipes can be found on sites like these.)

Baked Pita Chips

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

  • 12 pita bread pockets - wheat would be healthier
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon black ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried chervil or dried parsley

Cut each pita bread into 8 triangular slices.  Place triangles on lined cookie sheet.

Combine the oil, pepper, salt, basil, and chervil (or parsley) in a small bowl and mix well.

Brush each pita triangle with the herbed oil mixture.

Bake in the preheated oven for about 7 minutes or until the pita triangles are lightly browned and crispy.  Keep an eye on them because they can burn easily.

Recipe Resource:

Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Tenders

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.  Place a wire rack on a baking sheet and coat with cooking spray.

  • Canola or olive oil cooking spray
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat
  • 1 pound chicken tenders
  • 1 Tablespoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup marinara sauce, heated
 You will need four shallow containers:  put the Italian seasoning, garlic powder and salt into one, flour into the next one, eggs in the third, and the Parmesan cheese and wheat bread crumbs in the fourth.  Line them in this order too for easy dipping.

Toss the chicken tender first in the spices.  Coat it next with flour.  Dip it into egg (making sure it's completely covered) and allow the excess egg to drip off.  Dip the chicken tender last into the Parmesan and bread crumb mixture and then place onto the wire baking rack.

When you have a full rack, generously coat all the tenders with a coating of the canola oil or olive oil spray.

Bake for 5 minutes at 450 degrees.  Turn the tenders over and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

Serve the tenders with heated marinara sauce.

Just a few notes:  it's easy to make your own bread crumbs - toast the bread in a toaster, allow the toast to cool, break into pieces, and then using the pulse function on your blender, make the crumbs.  Or, you can use Panko breadcrumbs which can be found in the natural-foods section of most grocery stores.

I lament that I didn't take a photo of these - I was too busy dishing them up alongside the shrimp cocktail for our New Year's Eve dinner.  (yum!)  You can see a photo of them by clicking on the Recipe Resource below.

Recipe Resource:

Won't you link up your  favorite healthy recipes?  Thanks so much!

All my very best to you today and in the coming year!  


Marie @ Chocolate-Covered Chaos said...

Your recipes look good, Susan! I'm linking up my hummus recipe:)

Becky said...

Those recipes look yummy! I'm linking up my recipe for butternut squash soup. It's a tasty way to get more veggies in.

Thanks for following my blog!

Lisa said...

The pita chips and chicken tenders sound good. I am trying to change my eating habits too. Age is wonderful, lol. Thanks for sharing these recipes and for commenting on my blog.

Carolyn said...

ooh those chicken tenders sound really yummy,

I'm looking forward to grabbing a cuppa & looking around your blog!

In His joy,