Thursday, July 30, 2009

Lean Paula Deen: Chicken and Rice Casserole

Oh my goodness, y'all! As Paula would say, "This recipe is just to die for." Once again, it is simple and delicious...and easily modified to make it nutricious as well. This dish is another taken from The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cookbook.

Here is the original recipe:

3 cups diced cooked chicken
1 medium onion, diced and sauteed
One 8-once can water chestnuts, drained and chopped
Two 14-1/2 ounce cans French green beans, rinsed and drained
One 4-ounce can pimentos, rinsed and drained
one 10-1/4 ounce condensed cream of celery soup
1 cup of mayonnaise
One 6-ounce box Uncle Ben's long-grain and wild rice, cooked according to package directions
1 cup grated sharp Cheddar cheese


Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Mix all the ingredients together and pour into a 3-quart casserole dish. Bake for about 25 minutes.

My Healthy Spin:

* Sub Campbell's "Healthy Request" cream of celery...98% fat free!!
* Sub Hellmann's Mayonnaise Dressing...only 1 gram of fat per serving.
* Sub 2% sharp Cheddar


***Another time saving tip; the rice comes in a microwavable pouch. In 90 seconds...done!


As usual, follow the original directions, just substitute the reduced fat alternatives. The only suggestion from my family was to add some crushed crackers on top; reduced-fat Ritz, of course.


Try it out and I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!


NEXT ON THE MENU: Cheeseburger Meatloaf and Sauce

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Lean Paula Deen: Zucchini and Corn Casserole

Well, thanks to a generous donation of zucchini from my Father-In-Law's garden, our next Cookin' Lean Like Paula Deen recipe is none other than the fabulous Zucchini and Corn Casserole from The Lady and Son's Savannah Country Cookbook.


ZUCCHINI AND CORN CASSEROLE
Serves 5
1-1/2 pounds small zucchini
1/2 cup Egg Beaters
1- (8 ounce) can cream-style corn
1 small onion, chopped
1 small bell pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter"
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup 2% sharp  shredded Cheddar cheese
Paprika to taste

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook the zucchini in boiling water until just tender, about 6 minutes or so. Drain and cut into chunks; combine with corn and eggs. Meanwhile, saute' onion and bell pepper in the "ICBINB" until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add to zucchini and corn mixture; add salt and pepper. Pour the mixture into a lightly sprayed (use fat free cooking spray) casserole dish. Sprinkle 2 % cheese on top, then sprinkle with paprika. Bake for 30 minutes uncovered, or until lightly browned and bubbly.


My Healthy Twist:
* Substitute butter with 1 tablespoon of "ICBINB"
* Substitute Fat Free or 2% sharp Cheddar for regular (Note: Fat Free does not always melt well. I recommend 2% when cheese is melted.)
* Substitute 1/2 cup Egg Beaters (or any other egg substitute)for 2 regular eggs

RESULTS



I followed the original directions provided by Ms. Paula and used my healthy substitutions to create a delicious side dish. We paired this with tuna steaks and it was great! It would also make a great side for steak or chicken. You really can't go wrong!


The feedback from my taste-testers: They said it was good, but could use more cheese. I didn't use a full half-cup like I was supposed to, so don't be skimpy with the cheese! It will be missed.


Cook it up and enjoy! Let me know what you think.

NUTRITION FACTS (per serving): 122 calories;  4.49g fat;  15.49g carbohydrate;  7.91g protein;  2.54g fiber

~ Lindsay

Saturday, July 18, 2009

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Lean Paula Deen: South of the Border Mason-Dixon Dip

It's time to kick-off this blog with a recipe that is simple and delicious! For this, I have chosen Paula's South of the Border Mason-Dixon Dip from The Lady & Sons Savannah Country Cookbook (1998). Last night was my first stab at this recipe and I can say it was a success! It was so easy, so quick...and so good!! We may have found another football season favorite.


SOUTH OF THE BORDER MASON-DIXON DIP
Serves 6

INGREDIENTS:
One 15-ounce can Hormel TURKEY chili with beans
2 cups grated 2% sharp Cheddar cheese
3 green onion tops, chopped
Two 8-ounce packages FAT FREE cream
cheese, softened

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Heat the chili in a saucepan over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Press the softened cream cheese into the bottom of a 1.5 quart casserole dish. Pour the heated chili over the cream cheese and sprinkle the grated cheddar over the top. Bake for roughly 20 minutes or until it is hot and bubbly. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the chopped green onions. Serve immediately with tortilla chips.

RESULTS:
Follow the original recipe directions using my ingredient suggestions. These tiny changes cut the fat in this recipe drastically! In just the chili alone, you are now looking at 3 grams of fat per serving as compared to 7 grams. The lighter cream and cheddar cheeses save about 3 grams of fat per serving. To trim a little more, I served the dip with Snyder's Restaurant Style tortilla chips. These tasty tortillas have only 5 grams of fat per serving instead of 7-9 grams in other chips. There is also the Baked Tostito option, but I don't think those are as yummy. Snyder's taste more like the real thing.


So what did my fan club have to say? My hubby and little girl thought it was outstanding! Although I just got a "mmmmmm" from the little one, I know she loved it. Here are some suggestions that I am going to try next time: add hot sauce into the chili, dice tomatoes to sprinkle on top,and layer jalapenos on top of the chili.


So there you have it! My first Cookin' Lean Like Paula Deen recipe. Try it out and let me know what you think!

NUTRITION FACTS (per serving): 239.17 calories;  7.01g fat;  15.34g carbohydrate;  26.11g protein;  2.22g fiber

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