Dinner, Makeover Monday, Recipe, S, Uncategorized

Makeover Monday ~ Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake or “Fake Bake”

It is  Monday, so it is time for another recipe makeover. I love to take favorite recipes and make them THM friendly. One of the biggest hurdles people have to overcome is thinking that healthy eating means never having their favorite foods again. The truth is that you can make a healthy version of almost any meal. And most meals don’t require that much work to re-make!

This recipe was inspired by a recipe by Rachel Ray that I found on Food Network. It was intriguing to me so I decided to make it THM friendly and tweak the flavors for my family. This recipe wasn’t too bad on it’s own, but the pasta makes it less than figure friendly. I am including two options here for the pasta, though you could really use multiple options (like zoodles or spaghetti squash). I am always looking for new ways to incorporate konjac noodles into my recipes. I love them, but getting the whole family on board can be tricky. The preparation instructions here give the noodles plenty of time to absorb the bold flavors of this dish and soften up in the sauce while in the oven. If you choose to use Dreamfields pasta then you will use the “Fake-Bake” method.

One other note. The flavor profile of this meal is sweet-spicy because of the combination of sausage I used. You can easily change the flavor by using different sausage flavors.

You Will Need:

  • konjac noodles or Dreamfileds noodles
  • mineral salt
  • chicken sausages (I used andouille and apple)
  • coconut oil
  • bell pepper
  • onion
  • garlic
  • chicken stock
  • crushed tomatoes
  • dried parsley
  • dried basil
  • ricotta cheese
  • Parmesan cheese

Chicken Sausage Pasta Bake or “Fake-Bake” ~ THM S

Sweet and spicy pasta bake made with chicken sausages. To achieve the sweet and spicy flavor profile use half andouille sausage and half chicken-apple sausage. To change the flavor profile, just change up your sausage flavors.
Servings: 6
Author: myhealthyjourneyforlife

Ingredients

Ingredients

  • 3 packages konjac noodles or one box Dreamfields pasta
  • 1/2 tsp mineral salt
  • 1 pound chicken sausages any flavor
  • 3 tablespoons coconut oil divided
  • 1 bell pepper seeded and sliced
  • 1 large onion thinly sliced
  • 3 to 4 cloves garlic chopped
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley flakes
  • 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese green can is fine

Instructions

Directions

    Prepare pasta, and sauce

    • If you are choosing to use Dreamfields pasta, place a pot of water on the stove to boil for pasta. When the water boils, salt it and cook pasta according to the directions on the box.
    • Meanwhile, place chicken sausages in a large, 12-inch skillet with 1 tablespoon coconut oil, Cook over medium high heat to brown and crisp the casings, 5 to 6 minutes. 
    • Preheat oven to 375 degrees if you are using konjac noodles or preheat broiler if you are using Dreamfileds noodles. 
    • Remove sausages from skillet and add 2 tablespoons coconut oil. Add the onions and allow then to cook about 6-8 minutes, stirring occasionally to allow them to start to caramelize.
    • Next add bell peppers and  garlic and season with salt. 
    • While the vegetables are cooking, slice the peppers on an angle and add them to the peppers and onions. Cook together until peppers and onions are tender and sliced sausages are crisp at edges. 
    • Stir in crushed tomatoes and chicken stock and bring to a bubble, reduce heat to low. 
    • Add ricotta cheese, parsley and basil and stir to combine. 

    To Assemble Baked Pasta with Konjac Noodles

    • Place half the noodles, sausage, peppers, onions and sauce mixture in the bottom of a greased 9×13 baking dish. Top 1/2 cup of Parmesan and then the remaining noodles, sausage and sauce. Cover the top of the dish with the other 1/2 cup Parmesan and cook at 375 degrees for 30 minutes to allow all the flavors to meld and the noodles to soften.

    To Assemble the “Fake-Baked” pasta with Dreamfields

    • Place half the sausage, peppers, onions and sauce in the bottom of a flameproof baking dish. Top with all of the pasta and then the remaining sausage and sauce. Cover the top of the dish with the Parmesan and place until broiler 2-5 minutes to brown cheese and set pasta.;

    Do you have a favorite recipe you would like me to THM’ify? Comment below and I will see what I can do!

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    Follow Me On Twitter

    So, I decided to take the plunge and make a Twitter account. If Twitter is where you keep track of things then please follow me!

    My Healthy Journey For Life is my profile name and @THMCoachShannon is my Twitter handle. All of my blog posts will be automatically uploaded to twitter so I hope you will be kind enough to re-tweet! Thanks for following!

    Uncategorized

    Makeover Monday ~ Lemon Chiffon Pie

    My family has always enjoyed lemon chiffon pie. I grew up on the recipe my mom made which involved a can of sweetened condensed milk. (That makes everything taste fantastic, however it is not figure friendly!) My husband likes regular lemon meringue pie, but I truly prefer the creaminess of the chiffon, I am hoping this recipe will bring him over to my side! The original recipe can be found at Food Network.

    This looks like a really long and complicated recipe but it isn’t I promise! I whipped it together very quickly! It just looks long because I have given you two crust options and two topping options. So don’t despair, just pick the options you want and only focus on those! 

    Lemon Chiffon Pie ~ THM S

    Ingredients

    Crust

    You have  two options! I grew up having lemon chiffon pie in a graham cracker crust so I chose to use my No Bake Necessary Crust. If you prefer your lemon chiffon pie in a regular pie crust you can choose my Traditional Pie Crust. Both can be found by clicking here for Pie Crust Two Ways.

    Filling

    • 4 eggs, separated
    • 2/3 cup xes sweetener or gentle sweet (separated into 1/3 cups)
    • 1/4 cup fresh or bottled lemon juice
    • 1 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (optional)
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons powdered gelatin
    • 1/3 cup water

    Topping

    Here you also have two options! You can use my recipe for Stabilized Whipped Cream or you can use this recipe to make a meringue topping.

    Meringue Ingredients

    Directions

    For Lemon Chiffon Filling

    • In a mixing bowl with a whip attachment, whisk together the yolks and 1/3 cup gentle sweet until fluffy, then add the lemon juice and zest. Place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, and cook, whisking, until thickened, about 7 to 8 minutes.
    • Meanwhile, sprinkle the gelatin over cold water and let dissolve.
    • Remove the yolk mixture from the heat and whisk in the gelatin until dissolved. Place the mixture over an ice bath and stir with a rubber spatula to cool it. Once it’s room temperature remove it from the ice bath and let it sit while you whip the meringue for the filling.
    • Place the egg whites from your separated eggs in a clean dry bowl and whip on medium speed until foamy; then turn up to high and continue whipping until soft peaks form. Gradually add the remaining 1/3 cup sugar and whip until glossy and sugar has dissolved. Fold 1/3 of the whites into the lemon mixture; then fold in the remaining whites in 3 batches. Pour the mixture into the cooled pie shell and smooth the top.
    • Chill the pie at least 2 hours before serving. If you are adding the meringue topping, go to that step before chilling the pie.

    Directions for Meringue

    • Allow egg whites to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. (This is only to brown the meringue. If you want you can skip the oven and use a small torch to brown the top of the meringue.
    • Place the egg whites in a clean dry bowl and whip on medium speed until foamy; then turn up to high and continue whipping until soft peaks form. 
    • Add the cream of tartar and vanilla and beat for about a minute more.
    • Gradually add sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating on high speed about 5 minutes or until mixture forms stiff, glossy peaks and sugar dissolves (rub a small amount between two fingers; it should feel completely smooth).
    • Immediately spread meringue over pie filling, carefully sealing to edge of pastry to prevent shrinkage.
    • Bake for 10-15 minutes to brown meringue.
    • Chill pie for at least 2 hours before serving.

    Do you have a favorite recipe you would like me to THM’ify? Comment below and I will see what I can do!

    As always, I appreciate it when you choose to shop through my affiliate links. It costs you no extra but provides me with a small compensation that helps me keep adding valuable content to this blog.

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    Friday Fuel ~ Get Energized For E Meals

    In Friday Fuel, each week I will focus in on one of the Trim Healthy Mama fuel types, discussing its importance, when you should choose to eat it, different recipes in that fuel type, etc.

    For the past two weeks we’ve been discussing why E meals are so important. Your brain needs them and they give you energy! We need to reject the lie that says that all carbs or bad and embrace the incredible fuel that good carbs are!

    This week we are going to tackle one of the biggest objections people raise when discussing E meals:

    • I get really hungry soon after an E meal.
      • If you’re feeling hungry soon after your E meal, consider this … “The only likely reason you would feel hungry, an hour after a meal or snack, is if it was not protein-centered and you overdid the carbs. Remember, overdoing carbs causes excessive hunger.” (THM, page 593)

    So how do you keep from being hungry an hour or two after an e-meal?

    1. Make sure you are actually having enough food! There is not a set number of grams of protein that you are supposed to have at every meal, but for E meals it will really help to satisfy you longer if you don’t skimp on the protein. This is NOT a rule, but I like to aim for at least 20 grams of protein in my e meals. If I am not having enough meat in my meal to hit that mark then I will add a small protein shake or protein chocolate milk to my meal.
    2. Don’t forget your non-starchy veggies! Are you having a sandwich and an apple for lunch? Don’t stop there, add some veggies to your plate. Have a salad with a low fat dressing. Pile up some bell pepper strips or snap peas on your plate. I love to have some pickled okra! And since you are in e mode, this is a good time to get in the slightly starchier veggies like carrots or beets. Your plate can be full even when you are having an e meal.
    3. Don’t overdo one type of carb. While a sandwich and a piece of fruit is perfectly good in an E setting, we don’t want to do two sandwiches or two pieces of fruit at at time. Our bodies can only handle so many grains at a time. And while fruit is a wonderful, God-given food, we don’t want to overdo the amount of fructose we consume at a time. It is good to get a variety of carb sources into your e meals. Beans and legumes are much gentler and can be used as your entire carb source if you want.

    I hope this series has helped you get a better handle on the ever important E meal! I promised that this week I would include some recipes for E desserts and snacks, so here they are!

    Pumpkin Oatmeal Cookies

    Apple Crisp

    Caramel Apple Oatmeal Cookies

    Peach Cobbler

    bigstock-Delicious-Homemade-Peach-Cobbl-140299556

    Do you have your Thanksgiving Menu planned yet? If not go check out My Thanksgiving Picks to find 20 recipes all in one place!

    Motivation, Testimony, Uncategorized

    It’s The “Down 20lbs” Celebration!

    It is important to celebrate milestones, big and small. I have decided to celebrate every 10 pounds, so today is a day to celebrate!

    PicsArt_10-31-11.23.26.jpg

    Like last time, I am trying to keep these pictures real. The original picture is one that a friend took and I am trying to get as close to that pic as possible to show a true difference, thus the no makeup, ponytail, same pose picture. I don’t want to show a false result by taking the best pic possible at the best angle possible.

    Now I am going to get really real with you and show you some full body shots. EEEEK!! I am not fond of full body shots, there is no way to hide! But my friend also happened to get some candid shots of me that just happened to be nearly perfect for front and side view shots, SOOOOO, here we go, let’s get real.

    Now, the angles are slightly different (it’s really harder than it looks to replicate a picture!) but it is close enough to tell. I have a ways to go to my goal, but 20 pounds has definitely lessened my “width” in both directions. By the way, the shorts are diffrent colors but they are the exact same size/brand.

    My first 10 pounds came off very quickly (for me) only taking three weeks. My second 10 pounds (as expected) took longer, 2 1/2 months to be exact. For the last three weeks I was within a pound of my goal, bouncing up and down within a pound. It was maddening! However, one day the scale just decided to let go! Don’t give up, sometimes our body needs a break from losing but it will keep healing and reforming.

    And even with a 3 week stretch of no weight loss, I am still averaging 1.3 pounds per week. That is good steady weight loss. Don’t get frustrated with the “mini-stalls”. They aren’t really stalls at all, just a natural ebb and flow. Look at your over-all success. The big picture is always more fulfilling!