Getting Healthy in an Affordably Delicious Way

Welcome to The Newlywed Chef! My goal and desire will always be healthy and budget-wise cooking. If you aren't a follower yet, please become one! Always feel free to e-mail me recipes that sound good to you, and I will cook them! Or, e-mail some family favorite that you want posted for others to try, and I can do that as well, as long as its healthy, AND budget-friendly.

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Friday, February 5, 2010

A Few Highlights from a Strange Week....

This week, I was able to be at home ONE night. No cooking Monday or Tuesday, cooking while babysitting Wednesday night, and a normal meal on Thursday. Not every single dish was a success, so I'm highlighting what we/I liked!

First up, a low fat version of spinach salad, really easy, really yummy! This recipe comes from Ellie Krieger at

Spinach Salad with Warm Bacon and Apple Cider Dressing

10 oz baby spinach, washed
2 slices bacon, finely chopped
3 ounces canadian bacon, finely chopped (I used 5 ounces and omitted regular bacon)
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 pound button mushrooms (I used half a pound)
1 cup apple cider
2 T apple cider vinegar
1 t dijon mustard
Salt and Pepper

*I added a handful of honey toasted almonds, as well as a handful of craisins*

Place spinach into a large bowl. Cook bacon in a large skillet over medium heat for about 4 minutes, or until it is just crispy. Add Canadian bacon to the skillet and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring frequently. Remove meat from pan and place on a plate lined with paper towels. Drain any remaining fat from the skillet. 
Add olive oil and onions to the skillet and cook for about 2 minutes, or until onions soften slightly. Add mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, for 2 more minutes. Put onions and mushrooms on top of the spinach. 
Add apple cider and vinegar to the skillet and turn the heat up to medium-high. Stir to scrape up any bits that are stuck to the bottom of the pan and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until cider is reduced to about 1/2 cup.
Whisk in mustard, salt and pepper, to taste. Pour warm cider dressing over the mushrooms and spinach and toss until the vegetables are well coated. Sprinkle the bacon on top and serve.

We served this guy alongside Pasta Putenesca (featured early on in this blog!)

Next up, Mexican Night. I made some homemade BAKED tortilla chips with some tortilla soup and Turkey Burrito Burgers. The soup was nothing to write home about, but I'll share the chips and burgers with you!

Chili and Sea Salt Baked Tortilla Chips

12 whole wheat tortillas (or any corn or wheat tortilla you prefer_
Cooking Spray
Chili Powder
Any kind of salsa you want to dip in, or make your own using the recipe off of

All I did was spray the top of a tortilla, sprinkle some chili powder, stack a new one, and repeat. Once I had all 12 stacked up, I sliced them into eighths, put them on 2 baking sheets, and baked them at 400 degrees for about 10-12 minutes, watching closely to prevent them from burning!

Take them out, sprinkle with sea salt, or any salt, and serve alongside your salsa! Healthy and delicious! Use any spice you'd like before baking: Cumin, cayenne pepper, garlic powder etc.

The bean burgers. I will post these mainly because one of my best friends has requested that I do so. I enjoyed these, however, my husband had nothing fantastic to say about them. I did make 1 error, and that was that I added too much cooked rice to the meat, so they were falling apart, and I think thats what turned him off. Anyways, the taste is very Mexican, and personally, a perfect fit after the chips and salsa appetizer!

Turkey Bean Burrito Burgers (Rachael Ray)

1 cup (and 1 cup only!) leftover brown rice
1 pound ground turkey
1-15oz can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
Palmful chili powder
1.5 t cumin
1.5 t coriander
1 T grill seasoning
1 T Olive Oil
Optional Toppings such as avacado, roasted garlic, sour cream, jalepeno, red oinon, guacamole, etc.
Buns are optional as well, but I opted out

Combine your rice, meat, and beans with spices and grill seasoning. Form into patties. I ended up with 7. I know, right? Who makes an odd number. Anyways, add your oil to a large skillet over medium-high heat and cook patties 7-8 minutes on each side.

Mine fell apart in the skillet, so I baked them about 15 minutes at 375 to finish them off.

Yes, they resemble rice patties. Not my finest moment, but they tasted the same as they would have in perfect round circles.
Now.. here's the real reason they don't look perfect:

Trying to put dinner together with this little 1 and half year old was a trip! But worth it nonetheless! Who can resist that little boy?
Last on the list, and BEST, in my humble opinon:

Butternut Squash with Onion and Fennel

Nick and i both went crazy over this SIMPLE SIMPLE side dish!

1 medium-large butternut squash, peeled and cubed
1 sweet onion, sliced into wedges
1 bulb fennel, sliced into 1 inch pieces
3 T olive oil
1 t dried thyme
1/4 t cayenne pepper

All you do is put onion, fennel, and squash in a large bowl and toss with olive oil until all veggies look well covered in oil
Sprinkle with thyme and cayenne pepper and toss again

Spread onto baking sheet in a single layer, and bake 40 minutes at 400 degrees, stirring about halfway through. I took mine out at about 38 minutes- I could tell the squash was soft and onions were starting to brown.

WE LOVED THIS! Try it :)

I know this was a random post, but I had some flops this week, and I would never want to advertise a bad tasting dish to you! That was never my goal in blogging :) So enjoy these dishes however and with whatever you choose!
Better recipes next week, I promise :)

1 comment:

  1. Awe!! J-Boy! That is such a good picture of him!! :) I'm going to try making the chips! :)