Showing posts with label coconut. Show all posts
Showing posts with label coconut. Show all posts

Monday, January 16, 2012

Thai Coconut Shrimp


I have made a discovery in the last week.

Carbs. Are. Good.

Carbs make me happy. Carbs give me energy. Carbs help my brain process what you are saying to me quick enough for me to respond somewhat coherently.


Take away my carbs and life gets pretty bleak. Suddenly TV shows seem a bit sadder. I have a harder time concentrating on my books (gasp!), and I get a bit snappier.

Why do I know this? Because the very last three weeks of this crazy program I'm on has you do what's called "carb cycling." It basically consists of three days of very low carb days and then one high carb day. Essentially it's supposed to trick your metabolism and burn fat quickly. I'm one week in and have definitely noticed a difference, I'm starting to see lines and toning where I never have before, which is exciting, but it's been tough. While things like this might be okay to do short term I also recognize that it's probably not a good way to live consistently, at least not for me. If I've learned anything this last year, it's that balance really is the key, as well as finding happiness in food. Luckily I only have two weeks left and I'll be back to a balanced clean diet.

But, speaking of enjoying your food, you have got to try this shrimp dish. I served this to my friend who after finishing declared that she felt like she just ate at a restaurant. The sauce is my favorite part, it's rich and so flavorful, it's just delicious with the shrimp, veggies and noodles. If you can find them, I think this is best with whole wheat soba noodles, otherwise whole wheat spaghetti is just fine.



Thai Coconut Shrimp
Best of Clean Eating, by Clean Eating Magazine

Ingredients

8 oz dry brown rice noodles, or pasta of your choice
2 cups broccoli florets
2/3 cup light coconut milk (shaken to combine)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 tablespoons natural peanut butter with sea salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
juice of 1/2 lime
1/2 teaspoon of sea salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon of Stevia, Splenda or sugar, or to taste
1 red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 cup bean sprouts
24 medium raw shrimp, peeled, deveined and rinsed under cold running water

Directions

Bring two medium pots of water to a boil over high heat. In one pot, cook pasta according to package directions, then rinse with hot water to ensure pasta doesn't get sticky when left to stand. Fluff pasta with your fingers or a fork to further de-clump noodles, then set aside. In the second pot of boiling water, add broccoli, cover, turn heat down to ow and simmer for five minutes. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, in a bowl, add coconut milk, tomato paste, peanut butter, ginger, garlic, pepper flakes and lime juice. Use a fork or whisk to thoroughly combine.

Simmer coconut mixture, bell pepper and bean sprouts in a nonstick pan over medium-low heat for five minutes, stirring often to prevent clumping. Add shrimp and cook for another two minutes, then flip shrimp over and continue to cook for a final minute.

Toss noodles and broccoli with coconut-shrimp mixture and serve piping hot.

1/2 cup pasta, 6 shrimp, 1 cup veggies, 3 tablespoons sauce
338 cal, 9g fat, 48g carb, 6g fiber, 2.5g sugar, 20g prot

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Coconut Chicken Fingers



I had made a brief mention of these a week or so ago when I was in utter despair over my lost cameras. But as you know, the camera crisis had a happy ending and now I can give this chicken the credit it deserves.

My family doesn't like shrimp. None of them. I know. But, trooper that I am, I've learned to curb my shrimp cravings with similar substitutes like this fabulous coconut chicken.



This was the perfect meal to also experiment with my new olive oils that I received from Foodbuzz. When I was younger I had no idea that different oils served different purposes. I'm pretty sure I used olive oil in cake mixes several times. And while it probably wouldn't ruin your dish to use a less suitable oil, certain oils are best put to use in different things. The light olive oil is best for frying and baking, extra virgin for dipping, dressings and sauces, and pure for grilling, sauteing and marinades. I definitely learned something!



So I decided to have an oily night (yeah, oily just isn't a good adjective, even when you understand the context, but I digress) by using the light oil to shallow fry my chicken, and the pure oil to saute my peppers. They both turned out wonderfully. The chicken was sweet, crispy and a total family pleaser. The peppers were done simply, sliced and sauteed with salt and pepper, also sweet and crispy, a perfect side for the chicken.



Coconut Chicken Fingers
Cooking Light 2011

Ingredients

4 (6-ounce) skinless, boneless chicken breast halves, cut into 1/2-inch-thick strips
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 cup rice flour
1 cup whole buttermilk
1 large egg
1 1/2 cups unsweetened flaked coconut
3 tablespoons canola oil
Sweet chile sauce (optional, but I highly recommend it!)

Directions

1. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Place flour in a shallow dish. Combine buttermilk and egg in a shallow dish, stirring well. Place coconut in a shallow dish. Dredge chicken in flour; shake off excess. Dip chicken in egg mixture; dredge in coconut.

2. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes or until done, turning to brown. Serve with chile sauce, if desired.

Serves 6

Per Serving: 298 cal, 12g fat, 28g prot, 1g fiber

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Coconut Shrimp with Fiery Mango Sauce



Back when I was getting to know my husband, the ever important question came up, "do you like shrimp?" His answer, which remains his answer still is "not unless it's been breaded and deep fat fried!" Not being one to fry things often, I resigned myself to a happy but shrimp-less life with my husband, crossing my fingers that his non-shrimp loving genes wouldn't be passed on to my kids. It was.

So you can imagine my joy in finding this recipe from Cooking Light (for those of you new to my blog, I'm in love with Cooking Light. If Cooking Light was a religion, I'd be their first follower.) Big fat shrimp, coated in a crunchy, sweet layer of coconut and panko, and skillet fried to a browned crispy perfection. They're accompanied by a sweet and HOT mango sauce. I think I used jalapenos instead of habaneros, I haven't quite reached that level of bravery when it comes to hot foods.

During these cold, post-holiday days of winter, give this tropical dish a try, it might give you that bit of hope that you need to get you through it!

Coconut Shrimp with Fiery Mango Sauce
Cooking Light January 2010

Ingredients

Sauce:
1 teaspoon canola oil
2/3 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
1 (12-ounce) can mango nectar
1/4 Scotch bonnet pepper, unseeded
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1/8 teaspoon salt

Shrimp:
28 jumbo shrimp (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut
1/2 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
1/3 cup cornstarch
3 large egg whites, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 teaspoons canola oil, divided
Cooking spray

Directions

1. To prepare sauce, heat a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add onion, ginger, and garlic; sauté 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Add nectar and pepper; bring to a boil. Cook 10 minutes or until reduced to 3/4 cup. Remove from heat; let stand 10 minutes. Place mixture in a blender; process until smooth. Stir in juice and 1/8 teaspoon salt. Cool.

2. Peel and devein shrimp, leaving tails intact; discard shells.

3. Place coconut in a food processor; pulse 6 times or until finely chopped. Add panko; pulse to combine. Place coconut mixture in a shallow dish. Place cornstarch in a shallow dish. Place egg whites in a shallow dish. Sprinkle shrimp evenly with 1/2 teaspoon salt. Working with 1 shrimp at a time, dredge shrimp in cornstarch, shaking off excess. Dip in egg whites; dredge in coconut mixture.

4. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 teaspoons canola oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add 7 shrimp to pan; coat tops of shrimp with cooking spray. Cook shrimp 2 1/2 minutes on each side or until done. Repeat procedure 3 times with remaining oil and shrimp.

Serves 4

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Blogtastic Eats

I've said it once and I'll say it again, the best things I've made have come from other people's food blogs. I mean, you guys really know your food! The tragedy is that there are SO many great bloggy dishes, and only three meals in a day, I never feel like I'll be able to try them all. But even if I don't, rest assured, your pictures and descriptions always leave me drooling, and hungry! Here are two great finds that I recently tried, and must be shared.


I found these fantastic meatballs over at Gina's Weight Watchers blog. And while I'm not quite as strict on the diet as I should be (ahem), I still really try to eat delicious but healthy foods like this. Have you ever tried the potstickers from Costco. No, not the ones in the freezer, the fresh one, made with chicken, yeah, those! Aren't they awesome? These meatballs taste A LOT like them. They even come with a similar tasting sauce. They are juicy and full of flavor and were a hit with the whole family. You can find the recipe here.
Thanks Gina!


The second thing we made was Pina Colada. Definitely try this, especially if you are buried in three feet of snow and need some sunshine in your house! The recipe can be found here. Thanks Coleen! And here's a picture of my daughter when I told her we were going to make banana bread.


She gets excited.

Is anyone else out there having a snow day? Not only is my girl home from school, but my husband is as well! I have to tell you, waking up to a lazy weekday morning, and having aebelskivers with my husband is not a bad way to start the day, although I'm not quite sure about having the deal with the snow everytime. Stay warm my friends, and keep cooking up those wonderful dishes!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Almond Joy Cakeballs




Have you gotten sick of the cakeballs yet, because I sure haven't! I am so in love with these little treats that they've almost become the only dessert I want to make. I am constantly thinking of new combinations and ways to make them, and they are just so delicious!

These have been my favorite so far. I love the Almond Joy candy bar, I could eat one after every single meal and be happy. It turned out to be the perfect thing to copy in a cakeball, and it was just as delicious.

This was actually the first time that I preferred dark bittersweet chocolate to milk chocolate when dipping these. The coconut cake filling is so sweet and rich that the dark chocolate is a beautiful contrast.

And after making cakeballs as many times as I have, I would recommend making these the day before you actually plan to serve them. They seem to taste so much better the next day and especially right out of the fridge!

Almond Joy Cakeballs

Ingredients

1 coconut cake mix, prepared according to directions on the box
1 tub cream cheese frosting
1-2 teaspoons coconut extract
1 cup shredded coconut
1 cup sliced almonds, toasted (to toast almonds, place in dry saute pan, stir constantly on medium heat until browned)
2-3 cups preferred chocolate for dipping
1-2 tablespoons of Crisco, optional

Directions

Crumble cake mix into a large bowl, cutting off the sides of the cake if you don't want the brown spots of the sides. Stir coconut extract into tub of frosting until you reach a desirable strength. Stir into cake mix until evenly combined. Stir in coconuts and almonds until evenly combined. Freeze for an hour until hardened.

The Crisco helps to thin chocolate out, which makes it easier to dip, and hardens the chocolate shell, but is not necessary. Combine chocolate and Crisco and melt either in the microwave or over a double boiler. Dip each cake ball with two spoons, using the spoon to tap off any excess chocolate. Lay on wax paper to cool and harden. Store covered in the fridge.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Triple Layer Bars


All I can say about these bars is WOW. They have everything you could ever want, chocolate, peanut butter, coconut...sweetened condensed milk (you know when a recipe calls for that, it's gonna be good). Anyway, you have a party, bbq, dinner plans, and don't know what to bring for dessert? Make these, they won't disappoint!

Triple-Layer Cookie Bars
From The Taste of Home Baking Book

Ingredients


1-1/4 cups all purpose flour
2/3 cups sugar
1/3 cup baking cocoa
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter
2 eggs
TOPPING:
1 pkge (7 oz) flaked coconut
1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Directions

1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the first six ingredients. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Add eggs; mix well. Spread into a greased 13x9 inch pan.

2. Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. Sprinkle coconut over crust; drizzle with milk. Bake 20-25 minutes longer, or until lightly browned. IN a heavy saucepan or microwave, melt chocolate chips and peanut butter; stir until smooth. Spread over top. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars.
 
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