Monthly Archives: February 2013

Mango Teriyaki Chicken

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So I’m really excited because I recently came to the realization that I like fresh mangoes. Up until a few days ago, I was under the impression that I liked mango-flavored things, but disliked fresh mangoes themselves. I’ve always found them to have a weird stringy consistency and taste somewhat like a pine tree. But mangoes are one of those things I always find appealing in theory and thought that perhaps if I bought one from my local fresh produce market rather than a big grocery store chain that it might taste better. I’m glad to say I was right!

After doing a little research on mangoes, I’ve learned that there are a huge number of different varieties of mangoes out there. There are a few that are popularly available in the U.S., and while it’s hard to narrow down the types I’ve tried in the past, I think the pine taste I was experiencing might have been because the mango wasn’t ripe yet. The mango I used for this recipe is a Kent mango, which is large and has a red and green skin. It’s juicy, not at all fibrous, and tastes exactly how I imagine a good mango would taste.

The inspiration for this recipe came from my favorite type of teriyaki sauce: Trader Joe’s Island Soyaki. It’s a sweet sauce with tropical flavors from the addition of pineapple and ginger. I’ve discovered I really enjoy sweeter teriyaki sauces/Asian marinades, and thought that my mango would be a nice addition to the sauce I normally make.

This dish is sweet and tangy, and really taste like homemade take-out but is way healthier. It’s super easy to throw together and you can prepare the marinade the night before to make it even faster. This meal definitely ranks up there with some of my favorite creations. I hope you enjoy it too!

Mango Teriyaki Chicken
serves 2-3

Ingredients:

  • For the mango teriyaki marinade:
    • 3 Tbsp soy sauce
    • 2 Tbsp lime juice + 1 Tbsp water
    • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
    • 2 Tbsp brown sugar or honey
    • 1 tsp rice wine vinegar
    • 1/2 tsp fresh ginger or 1/4 tsp powdered
    • 2 tsp sesame seeds
    • 1/4 cup diced fresh mango
  • 1 large (uncooked) chicken breast, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 1 cup uncooked brown rice
  • 1/4 cup diced onion
  • 1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups broccoli
  • optional: chopped green onions, chopped cilantro to garnish

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the marinade. Add the chunks of chicken and make sure each piece is evenly coated with the sauce. Place in refrigerator and let marinate for 2-4 hours.
  2. When chicken is done marinating, begin cooking your rice according to box directions.
  3. In a large frying pan, heat 2 tsp olive oil + 1 tsp sesame oil over low heat. Add your diced onion and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add red pepper and garlic and continue to cook.
  4. Cook your broccoli using your favorite method. You could add it to the onion and pepper, or you could steam it, which is how I chose to cook it.
  5. Remove your marinating chicken from the fridge and pour into frying pan along with the onion and pepper, sauce and all. Turn burner up to medium/medium-high and cook until chicken is no longer pink in the middle, about 5-7 minutes per side.
  6. Serve your cooked rice and broccoli and top with mango chicken (be sure to get some of the sauce!). Garnish with optional green onions and cilantro and enjoy.
To cut your mango, first cut a chunk off the side of your mango (not down the middle). Then score the mango using your knife, and scrape out the small chunks of mango off the skin.

To cut your mango, first cut a chunk off the side of your mango (not down the middle). Then score the mango using your knife, and scrape out the small chunks of mango off the skin. This method is suggested because the pit of a mango is rather large and shaped irregularly.

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Whisk together all the ingredients for the teriyaki sauce and add the chunks of mango.

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Add your chicken to the sauce and let marinate in the fridge for 2-4 hours. When your chicken is almost done marinating, begin cooking your rice.

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Saute up some onions, pepper, and garlic and add your marinated chicken (including the sauce). Start cooking the broccoli at this time, too.

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Cook until chicken is cooked through, about 5-7 minutes per side.

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When your chicken is finished cooking, serve over a bed of rice with broccoli.

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πŸ™‚

Expect more mango recipes from me in the near future!

Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese

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Bolognese is one of those words that I never had any idea what it meant until I started watching the Food Network. One of my very favorite shows to watch on it is Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. I love watching Guy travel around to restaurants all around the U.S. that you would have never heard of otherwise, and learn about how others interpret popular recipes or make entirely unique creations. I’ve actually learned a lot about cooking and food in general from that show, and it gives me endless inspiration for the meals that I create.

One recipe that I’ve seen a number of times is Bolognese sauce. Bolognese is a meat-based tomato sauce typically consisting of ground meat, onion, carrot, and celery, finished off with white wine, sometimes cream, and served over papparadelle pasta. Pasta with meat sauce has always been somewhat of a comfort food to me, so this recipe instantly appealed to me. Growing up, my mom would often make what she called “American Chop Suey”, which was just meat sauce served over fun pasta like rotini or wagon wheels (our favorite!). As much as I love mom’s chop suey, I felt like I was ready to kick things up a notch and fix up an old favorite.

My Bolognese sauce is not exactly traditional. First of all, I decided to use ground turkey rather than beef or pork simply because I prefer the flavor and like that it’s lower fat. My recipe also doesn’t include white wine. I simply haven’t acquired the taste for wine in cooking yet… hopefully it will come some day. I chose not to add cream to my sauce, but if you choose to use it, make sure you add it at the end when the sauce is just about done cooking.

This Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese is a rich, chunky sauce with complex flavors from the combination of the meat, veggies, and spices. I chose to cook it in a slow cooker because I think most of us can agree that sauces that are cooked over a low temperature for several hours just taste better. If you don’t have a crock-pot, you can cook this sauce over the stove top and let it simmer for 3-4 hours. This sauce is surprisingly low-fat and is a perfect meal to serve to your family or friends. Serve it with whole grain pasta to make it even healthier!

Slow Cooker Turkey Bolognese
serves 4-5

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb. ground turkey (I used 93% lean)
  • 1 15 oz. can crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce
  • 1 15. oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp basil
  • 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 bay leaf
  • cooked pasta of your choice, to serve

Directions:

  1. In a large frying pan, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and 1 Tbsp butter over low heat. Add onions and carrots and saute for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened. Add celery and garlic and continue cooking.
  2. In a separate frying pan, cook ground turkey over medium heat. Use a wooden spoon or spatula to break the meat up into small chunks. Cook for 5-10 minutes, or until meat is lightly browned (but don’t overcook).
  3. Lightly spray the inside of your slow cooker with cooking spray. Add meat and veggies, along with the 2 cans of tomatoes and the spices. Stir to combine. Don’t forget the bay leaf, too!
  4. Β Set for low and cook for 4-5 hours. Once your sauce is finished, served over cooked pasta with a healthy sprinkle of parmesan cheese and enjoy. πŸ™‚
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Start by sauteing your veggies

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and browning your meat

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Once your meat and veggies are done cooking, add them to your slow cooker along with the tomatoes and spices

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When your bolognese sauce is just about ready to serve, cook up some pasta

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Serve your pasta with the bolognese sauce and some parmesan cheese. Yum!

Vegetarian Chili

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At this point I have mentioned my love for vegetarian food a few times on this blog. I would say about 40-50% of the meals I eat each week are vegetarian, sometimes even vegan. I really enjoy popular vegetarian/vegan food such as tofu and tempeh, and I have grown a bit of an obsession with lentils. My roommates probably think I’m weird, but I just find something about lentils so satisfying and have been eating them once or twice a week for the past few months.

Chili is a dish I have always loved, and have tried many variations of – but all of them have always included meat. As a substitute for meat, I used tempeh, mushrooms, and lentils. I’ve noticed these three things are often used in vegetarian dishes recipes because their texture imitates ground meat, such as beef or turkey. Tempeh, for those of you who are unfamiliar, is actually made from fermented soybeans. I know what you’re thinking, and while I do agree it sounds completely unappetizing, it has a somewhat meaty texture and soaks up the flavor of whatever you’re cooking it in (just like tofu). It’s also packed with protein and at $1.99 per 8 oz, you can’t beat the price.

Though I admit I did miss the ground turkey a bit (which is what I usually use for chili), I found that this chili was still filled with many other flavors from the veggies, spices, and beans. This recipe is packed with protein, fiber, vitamins B and C, and will keep you feeling full all day long. I ate mine with cheese and a bit of sour cream, but the chili itself is vegan so it’s perfect to serve to your vegan or vegetarian friends!

Vegetarian Chili
makes 5-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 2 celery stalks, diced
  • 1 bell pepper, diced (I used half a red and half a green)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup chopped mushrooms (baby bella or white will do)
  • 1 8 oz. package tempeh
  • 2 15 oz. cans diced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz. can tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes
  • 1-2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 cup lentils
  • 1 15 oz. can of your favorite beans, rinsed and drained (I used a combination of black and pinto beans)
  • 2Β  Tbsp brown sugar (optional)
  • optional toppings: serve with diced avocado, shredded cheese, cilantro, sour cream/Greek yogurt, etc.
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Your ingredients

Directions:

  1. In a large frying pan, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil and add diced onion and carrot. Cook for about 10 minutes, until slightly softened. Add diced celery, bell pepper, garlic, and mushrooms and continue cooking over medium heat.
  2. In a medium-large cooking pot, add 1 tsp olive oil and crumble tempeh into the pot using your fingers. Fry until tempeh has turned golden-brown in color, about 3-5 minutes.
  3. In a separate smaller pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add your lentils and cook for about 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they are mostly cooked. It’s okay if they’re not completely cooked through (see step 5).
  4. While the lentils are cooking, add cooked veggies to tempeh, along with both cans of diced tomatoes and tomato sauce. Stir in your spices and bring the chili to a boil, then return to a simmer.
  5. Add the cooked lentils to the chili, along with the beans and optional brown sugar. Let the chili simmer for another 15 minutes or so to let the flavors really intensify. Serve with optional toppings and enjoy πŸ™‚
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Start by sauteing your onions and carrots

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After about 10 minutes, add the rest of the veggies and continue cooking

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Don’t forget the mushrooms and garlic!

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While your veggies are cooking, crumble the tempeh into a cooking pot along with 1 tsp olive oil and fry for 3-5 minutes until golden-brown

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In a smaller pot, begin to cook your lentils. (I cooked mine in some leftover tomato sauce for extra flavor).

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While the lentils are cooking, add the cooked veggies to the pot with the tempeh, along with the diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, and spices.

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Once your lentils are done cooking, add them to the chili along with the 15 oz. can of your favorite beans and optional brown sugar.

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Let the chili simmer for another 15 minutes or so and then serve with optional toppings

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πŸ™‚

Side note, how did everybody make out in the crazy blizzard last weekend? We were lucky that we didn’t lose power, but we did spend a good 3 – 3 1/2 hours shoveling out our cars in our driveway. Our driveway is so narrow that the snowdrifts on the sides of our house and the one next door just completed blended into our cars. My car, which is a Nissan Pathfinder with 4-wheel drive, was completely buried in snow and we actually needed our neighbor’s help to push it out!

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Yep, that is my car under there.

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At one point I got tired of using a snow brush so I just got on top of my car and start kicking off the snow, haha.

As if that snow storm wasn’t enough, yesterday we got another snowfall. Luckily not 2 feet this time, but enough to make me feel seriously ready for spring.

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies

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So I know I was just saying a couple of posts ago that I wanted to shift the focus of this blog back towards healthy eating BUT since today is Valentine’s Day, I figured an innocent cookie recipe wouldn’t hurt… Whether you’re single or in a relationship, I think everybody deserves something sweet on Valentine’s Day, right?!

For these cookies, I used my favorite cookie recipe, but changed a few things. First, I added 2 tsp of cornstarch to the flour. I’ve been reading about this a lot on various food blogs, and decided to try it out. Cornstarch is a thickening agent and helps to make cookie dough extra thick and fluffy. I also added caramel chips and toffee bits for some extra sweetness – so delicious!

The other thing I tried out was instead of using a whole stick of butter, I used half butter and half coconut oil. I am fairly obsessed with anything coconut and recently used coconut oil for the first time. It behaves like butter, as it’s solid at room temperature, but does have a mellow, coconut-y flavor. Coconut oil does contain saturated fat, but it also is a great source of lauric acid. Lauric acid is a monoglyceride that has antifungal, antiviral, and antimicrobial properties and can actually help to prevent you from getting illnesses or infections. Read more about it here!

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Chip Cookies
makes about 2 dozen cookies

Ingredients:

  • 4 Tbsp butter + 4 Tbsp coconut oil, melted*
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 3 Tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, whisked
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/3 cup Caramel Bits (can be found at Target in the baking aisle)
  • 1/3 cup toffee bits

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*If you don’t have coconut oil or dislike the taste of coconut, feel free to use regular butter instead.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 300ΒΊF (unless chilling the dough first – see # 4). In a large mixing bowl, combine melted butter and coconut oil with brown sugar and white sugar. Whisk in egg and vanilla extract and stir until combined.
  2. In a separate medium mixing bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Whisk until well-incorporated, about 30 seconds.
  3. Stir dry ingredients into wet, just until uniform. Fold in chocolate chips, caramel bits, and toffee bits.
  4. Optional: refrigerate dough for 2 or up to 24 hours. Chilling the dough helps to intensify the flavors and also prevents the cookies from spreading out in the oven and becoming too thin. Once you’re finished chilling the dough, preheat your oven.
  5. Roll the cookie dough into one-inch balls and place on a lightly greased baking sheet. Normally I wouldn’t grease a cookie sheet for cookie dough with butter already in it, but the caramel bits can get pretty sticky otherwise. Bake for 13-15 minutes, or until edges of cookies begin to turn a light golden color.
  6. Enjoy with a cold glass of milk πŸ™‚

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Happy Valentine’s Day! β™₯

Banana Oatmeal Muffins

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Before I get into this recipe, I’d like to make a little announcement. I recently made a Facebook page for this blog, so if you’d like,
follow this link to “like” Hungry Hannah on Facebook!

Anyway, back to the muffins. I must say, I have always loved a good muffin. As a child, I would love to get cinnamon or chocolate chip muffins from the local grocery store’s bakery and munch on them all morning. I remember some of my favorite muffins were the super chocolaty Weight Watchers ones that my mom kept in the freezer – I thought they were a treat but didn’t realize at the time they were secretly healthy. Over the years I learned that muffins are loaded with sugar and not exactly the most substantial breakfast, but in addition to that, eating a sugary, carb-packed breakfast has always left me feeling hypoglycemic.

I still love muffins, but lately I’ve been focusing on healthy muffins that can be eaten for breakfast and not leave me feeling weak and shaky. When I saw this recipe for Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Muffins, I knew I had found the one. Instead of white refined flour, these muffins use whole grain flour made from… oats! The oats are simply ground up in a food processor until they resemble the consistency of flour. Oat flour is chewy and slightly sweeter than white or whole wheat flour, and healthy, too. Oats definitely belong on the super foods list – they are low in fat, full of fiber, can help lower cholesterol levels, and can even aid in weight loss.

I admit I am still on my quest to make myself eat oatmeal more regularly and enjoy it, but I think these muffins are a good step in the right direction. These muffins truly taste like a cross between banana bread and oatmeal – or perhaps baked banana oatmeal. Best of all, they have no added butter, oil, or white sugar – just some honey and Greek yogurt. What I am trying to say is, these are some breakfast muffins you don’t have to feel guilty about eating πŸ™‚

I stayed true to the recipe for the most part, but I added cinnamon, used vanilla-flavored yogurt, and probably only ended up using about 2 Tablespoons of honey but thought they could have used a little more like 1/4 cup. If you want sweeter muffins, then stick to the 1/2 cup listed.

Banana Oatmeal Muffins (adapted from Banana Oatmeal Breakfast Muffins on Fit and Healthy with Debbie)
makes 12 regular or 6 large muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup honey (or 1/2 cup if using unsweetened yogurt)
  • optional: if desired, add some nuts, chocolate chips, or coconut flakes to the batter. yum!

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Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400ΒΊF. In a food processor, add oats and pulse until a smooth, flour-like consistency is formed. Add to a medium mixing bowl along with baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and whisk to combine. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, mash the two bananas until no large chunks remain. Whisk in eggs, yogurt, vanilla extract, and honey. Stir until well-combined.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir with a wooden spoon or spatula until a thick batter in formed. Spoon batter into a greased muffin tin, filling each section about 3/4 of the way. Bake for 18-20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Let cool slightly before eating.
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Add your oats to your food processor and pulse until they’ve reached a smooth, flour-like consistency. My food processor is older and the blades are dull, so odds are that your oat flour will be much smoother than mine.

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Mash up your nanners.

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In one bowl, combine the dry ingredients as listed in the directions, and in another bowl, combine the wet ingredients. Slowly stir the dry ingredients into the wet, making sure no lumps remain.

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Spoon the batter into your greased muffin tin and bake at 400 degrees for 18-20 minutes.

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The muffins are done once a toothpick can be inserted and come out clean.

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Moisty, chewy, and delicious!

I found these muffins to have a very similar consistency to oatmeal, so if you like oatmeal and you like bananas, you will probably like these muffins. They are extra tasty when warmed slightly and served with a small pat of butter or drizzle of honey πŸ™‚

And for my fellow New Englanders, stay safe and dry in the snowstorm!