Mi Cocina Latina

Last night’s culinary creation combined one new recipe with two old ones I picked up while on the Whole30 for a tasty dinner with Latin flair.18516215_10159045122845221_1841648487_n

These chimichurri chicken drumsticks are, according to Greatist, one of Whole30 Co-founder Melissa Hartwig’s 11 favorite recipes. When I cook chicken it’s usually breasts, but these drumsticks, after marinating in chimichurri and spending the last few minutes in the oven under the broiler, simply can’t be beat. I use the chimichurri recipe from the Whole30 book, then cook the drumsticks at 375 degrees for about 55 minutes. Sounds scrumptious, right? But wait… there’s more! I use the Whole30 ranch for dipping! Melissa (Hartwig, keep up!) drizzles it over her chicken, but I found that unless I dunk my ‘sticks, the dressing slides right off. These are full of flavor, but I recommend saving some chimichurri and recoating the chicken if you plan to heat up leftovers; after a day in the fridge, the sauce kind of soaked in.
The new recipe I incorporated was plantain chips. I found this particular recipe on Pinterest. I tried two different seasoning combinations for comparison: salt and pepper and sweet and spicy. The recipe says to bake your thinly-sliced plantains at 400 degrees for 16 to 20 minutes, flipping them after eight. Since the chicken was in the oven, I used the toaster oven for these, and they took a little less time and a little more monitoring. After about 14 minutes, I had tasty chips as addictive as any you’d find in the store.
One plantain made about a serving and a half. Only problem is they did not store well. I kept them in a Tupperware container overnight and when I went to serve them tonight with my leftover chicken, they were no longer crisp or flavorful. I plan on making them again, but I’ll have to be hungry enough to eat a whole plaintain’s worth at once.
Overall, this was a meal I will make again. Even if Mom asks where the green vegetable was.
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(Pumpkin) Spice up Your Life

I am obsessed with pumpkin spiced everything. It has nothing to do with being “basic,” as the kids say these days, or trendy; I just love the flavor. But what I’m sure many people don’t realize is how much sugar is typically added to beverages and store-bought foods that are pumpkin-flavored. Furthermore, more often than not, these items don’t contain real pumpkin. That’s why the moment I could feel fall in the air, I went in search of some healthy pumpkin spice recipes. I present to you. . . pumpkin spiced overnight oats two ways!

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The main difference between these two recipes is that one contains Greek yogurt for added protein and creaminess. I’ll start with that one (pictured on the right).

Pumpkin Pie Protein Overnight Oats

I adapted the recipe from http://amyshealthybaking.com/blog/2015/09/02/pumpkin-pie-protein-overnight-oats/.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup (120g) plain nonfat Greek yogurt
  • ½ cup (122g) pumpkin purée
  • ¼ cup (25g) old-fashioned oats
  • 1 tbsp (12g) Truvia
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon

The only change I made was using a packet of Sweet’N Low instead of the Truvia, simply because it’s what I had. All you do, as with any overnight oats recipes, is mix up all the ingredients in an airtight container with a lid and leave them in the fridge overnight.

Verdict

 

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Two paws up!

Because of the yogurt combined with the pumpkin, I found it very filling. It wasn’t very sweet, so next time I may try using vanilla Greek yogurt. Overall though, I liked it and will make again.

 

Pumpkin Pie Overnight Oats

I adapted the recipe from http://rabbitfoodformybunnyteeth.com/pumpkin-pie-overnight-oats/.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup unsweetened soy milk
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 Tbsp chia seeds
  • 1/2 Tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp ginger, and 1/8 tsp nutmeg)

I used regular skim milk because I don’t drink enough of it, fake maple syrup because it’s what I had and no chia seeds because they were too high on the shelf.

Verdict

Yum! I think this one may have been slightly sweeter, perhaps because there was no tart yogurt to take away from the pumpkininess. Because of the pumpkin pie spice, it also tasted more like pie than straight pumpkin. Would definitely make again!

So there you have it. Got other pumpkin spice recipes you think I’d enjoy? Please send them my way! I can keep eating this stuff till spring 😉

 

Spaghetti Squash Crusted Pizza

All hail the almighty spaghetti squash! Despite the fact that I needed a muscular man to help me slice open the massive fruit I picked out this time, I’m obsessed. And this recipe only added fuel to the fire of my obsession.

Other than the squash, you probably already have everything you need to make spaghetti squash pizza crust, which is GREAT. You’ll also need to gather your pizza toppings; I used Prego tomato sauce, a pizza cheese blend and chicken breast strips for protein.

Look how pretty it is!FullSizeRender

I’m not going to post the entire recipe here because I think you all know how to click on a hyperlink, but I will offer a few tips/warnings.

  1. For me, two cups of squash made a crust that was roughly nine inches in diameter. If you want a foot-long (or foot-round) like the recipe claims to make, I recommend using more spaghettified squash.
  2. Do NOT forget to spray whatever material will be touching the crust. I used foil but failed to spray and ended up having to scrape each bite from the aluminum. It was still delicious!
  3. The aforementioned muscley man remembered to spray but still could not eat his pizza without a fork. I think the fall apart nature of the crust might have something to do with not straining the squash enough before combining it with the other ingredients. Make sure you get as much squash liquid out as possible.

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Want to know a secret? This slice of pizza has a layer of aluminum foil stuck to the bottom of it.

Bell Pepper Nacho Boats

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Say hello to my new favorite recipe! How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

  1. It’s delicious. Everything you love about nachos, minus the greasy chips and with turkey instead of beef.
  2. It’s healthy. This is another one I found searching for “low carb, high protein” on Pinterest.
  3. It’s adorable. They’re rainbow-colored boats… I mean COME ON! The recipe practically begs for an I’m on a Boat parody, but I’ve got nuthin.

New Recipe: Spaghetti Squash Mushroom Quiche

I am constantly looking up new recipes on Pinterest. Despite the fact that I own several cookbooks and sometimes even clip recipes from magazines and newspapers, 9 out of 10 times I get my meal inspiration from Pinterest. My latest search term was “low carb, high protein recipes,” which is how I found tonight’s dinner.

I had never made spaghetti squash before so I had no idea what to expect. That part was surprisingly simple, although you do have to bake it for about half an hour before you can even spaghettify it.

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Photo: ifoodreal.com

Then you sauté the onions, garlic, kale and mushrooms, mix all that with the remaining ingredients, slop it into your spaghetti squash crust and bake for 50 minutes at 400 degrees. If it sounds time-consuming, it is. But I did 30 minutes of pilates while it was in the oven, so that’s gotta count for something.

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Here’s what it looked like straight out of the oven. Nice, right? The recipe says to wait 30 minutes before cutting into it, but I was a little over eager. Instead I waited 20 minutes after cutting into it, once I realized the slices lacked definition.

When I finally dug into my creation, I was surprised by how flavorful it was. So yummy! My only complaint is how moist it was. I wouldn’t call it pudding-like, but it certainly held onto the moisture from all those veggies. I wonder if there’s any way to minimize that for next time. Until then, I’m going to enjoy my leftovers, at just 170 calories a slice.