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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 20, 2011 6:30:24 AM PDT
As Head Chef of Venice Nutrition, I always get asked my secrets in the kitchen for making ordinary healthy food extraordinary. I have a few tricks up my sleeve that I can pass along...

Chicken. It's high in protein, lean and well, boring. It's easy to overcook it so dryness is always an issue. So each week, I buy a ton of bone in, skin on chicken breasts at the market. I place a few sprigs of fresh herbs like thyme and a smashed garlic clove directly under the skin. I then add MSG free Rotiserree chicken seasoning or Kosher or Sea Salt and fresh ground black pepper on both sides of the chicken. I cook it skin on, bone in (that adds a ton of moisture and flavor) at 350 degrees until tender and cooked through. Once out of the oven and cooled I discard the skin, peel away the meat from the bone and use it in any dish that calls for chicken like pasta dishes, chicken salads, on wraps, etc. The end result is garlic and herb roasted chicken flavor, lots of tenderness and a versatile protein I can use throughout the week.

I'm also really "big" on fresh herbs like basil and thyme. I add basil last minute to any dish that I want to add sweetness to such as homemade marinara sauce (which I use as a healthy topping on chicken and veggies). I use thyme to add into all my poultry dishes. And I use both fresh herbs in homemade salad dressings...which brings me to my next favorite trick in the kitchen.

I love making homemade salad dressings. I whisk together a little dijon mustard, lemon, olive oil, fresh herbs, salt and pepper and honey to balance the flavors. I keep a bowl of this in the fridge to drizzle on salads or wraps.

Anyone else out there have some tips they use in their kitchen to keep healthy food interesting??

Posted on Mar 20, 2011 6:33:26 AM PDT
I am going to try your suggested homemade dressing. Sounds perfect!!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 20, 2011 12:43:15 PM PDT
Thanks Patti! There's nothing like a homemade dressing and they keep reallly well in the fridge for about a week.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 10:48:59 AM PDT
Kelly Kaler says:
Thanks for your tip on the chicken...I always buy skinless and boneless, because I wanted it to be as lean as possible. I'm going to make it for dinner tonight!!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 2:40:25 PM PDT
I never thought about pre-mixing my own dressing. I usually just to oil and vinegar and pepper, but I can definitely go for some extra taste. Do you know approximately what portions you use of each ingredient? It sounds delicious. Thanks Val!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 3:14:18 PM PDT
I used to use only boneless, skinless chicken too but it's so expensive and usually pretty dry. So I switched to the bone in skin on (just make sure to remove the skin before serving). By cooking it with the bone in and skin on, it sort of traps in all the moisture and roasted chicken/herb/garlic flavor. Good luck, and let me know how it turns out!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 3:20:02 PM PDT
I used to use only boneless, skinless chicken too but it's so expensive and usually pretty dry. So I switched to the bone in skin on (just make sure to remove the skin before serving). By cooking it with the bone in and skin on, it sort of traps in all the moisture and roasted chicken/herb/garlic flavor. Good luck, and let me know how it turns out!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 31, 2011 3:24:11 PM PDT
You should try it Abbi, it's so easy and it holds really well in the fridge. I like to do about 2 Tbsp. dijon mustard, whisked together with all the juice from 1/2 lemon. I sometimes add about 1 tablespoon of finely chopped shallot or grated onion, and sometimes a little grated garlic (just grate a clove). I then slowly whisk in olive oil (about 1/4 cup). Then I'll stir in fresh basil (about 2 tbsp. roughly chopped basil) or about 1 tbsp of fresh thyme (if I want to make it more earthy vs. sweet). Add about a teaspoon of honey (whisk it well). Season to taste with salt and pepper and voila..homemade dressing (all heart healthy, high quality fat too)!
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Participants:  4
Total posts:  8
Initial post:  Mar 20, 2011
Latest post:  Mar 31, 2011

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