Thursday, November 22, 2012

Cookin Light with Rachael Ray: Well-Dressed Salmon & Crispy Mashed Potato Cakes

First.... HAPPY THANKSGIVING!! I don't know about you, but I am very thankful for a lot of things in my life. One of those many things happens to be sharing my love of food and fitness with you through this blog. So for a special day like today, I wanted to do a little more. How about two recipes in one post?!?!? Sounded good to me!

These two recipes make a complete meal. Inspired by original recipes from Rachael Ray, this is a dish that is sure to impress without costing you too much time or money. We made this on a busy weeknight just before leaving town for Thanksgiving vacation. With all that needed to be done to get ready, there was still time after work (between the packing, laundry and cleaning), to throw together a meal that is bursting with great flavor and powerful nutrients. It offers a ton of healthy fats and protein; just what you need to fuel your holiday shopping and perfect for those busy nights during the Christmas season. Instead of ordering in, try this!

Save this one for next week as you get back on track after your turkey day feast!


WELL-DRESSED SALMON Serves 4

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 small plum tomatoes
  • 1/2 English (seedless) cucumber
  •  1/4 red onion, finely chopped, divided
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons SPLENDA
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus a drizzle
  • 1/4 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 skinless salmon fillets (6 ounces each)

  • DIRECTIONS

    Dice the cucumber into quarter-inch pieces. Leave on the peel. Seed and dice the tomatoes into quarter-inch pieces. Combine the cucumber, tomatoes and half of the red onion(half of the 1/4 cup) in a bowl and set aside.



    In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, SPLENDA and white wine vinegar and the remaining half of the red onion. Gently mix in the EVOO while continuing to whisk. Stir in the dill and season the dressing with salt and pepper, to taste.



    Season the salmon with a little black pepper. Heat a nonstick skillet with a drizzle of EVOO over medium-high heat (1/4-1/2 tablespoon is all you need). Place the salmon rounded side down and cook until golden and a little crispy at the edges, 3-4 minutes. Flip and cook for 2 minutes more for a pink center, or 4 minutes for opaque fish.


     
    Transfer the salmon to dinner or serving plates; top with the cucumber-tomato relish and cover with a liberal amount of dill dressing.

     

    RESULTS

    Salmon, veggies and EVOO are healthy to begin with. They are packed with nutritional goodness and loads of healthy fats. With that being said, we don't need to use more than we need. So to cut back a little with this dish, I simply scaled down the amount of EVOO used and substituted a little SPLENDA in place of the sugar. Other than that, the recipe stayed the same. The real changes came in the side dish below!

    Check out the nutritional savings for the salmon....

    NUTRITION FACTS (per serving):

    BEFORE: 300.8 calories / 16g fat / 13.3g carbohydrate / 21g protein / .63g fiber
    AFTER: 178.6 calories / 9g fat / 4.8g carbohydrates / 21g protein / 1.1g fiber

    SAVES: 122.2 calories / 7g fat / 8.5g carbohydrates
    ADDS: .47g fiber


     

    CRISPY MASHED POTATO CAKES
    Serves 4 (Makes 8 Cakes)

    INGREDIENTS

  • 4 ounces FAT FREE Philadelphia Cream Cheese
  • 2 pounds red potatoes
  • 2 tablespoons FAT FREE sour cream
  • 2 scallions, very finely chopped
  • 2 eggs (Egg Whites Only), lightly beaten
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)~ 1/4 TBSP for each batch of 4 cakes

  • DIRECTIONS
     Dice the potatoes and add them to a large pot. Cover with water and salt the water. Bring to boil over medium heat and cook until tender.

    Drain the potatoes and return to the hot pot to dry. In a microwave-safe bowl, soften the cream cheese for 20 seconds on high in the microwave. Add the cream cheese to the potatoes along with the sour cream, scallions, egg whites and salt and pepper, to taste. Mash the potatoes to combine the mixture.

    Heat EVOO in nonstick skillet over medium heat (If doing one batch, heat all 1/2 TBSP. If doing 2 batches like I did, heat 1/4 TBSP first, then add for 2nd batch). Drop 2-inch mounds of the potato mixture (approximately eight mounds) into the skillet and gently press down to flatten a bit. Crisp the potatoes until deeply golden on each side, about 7-8 minutes total.



    RESULTS

    These things were incredible! I mean, think about it....potatoes, cream cheese, sour cream, mashed and fried crispy! The only thing that could have made these things more heavenly would be bacon. But without the bacon, they were still amazing. Even more amazing...check out the savings with a couple simple switches, especially in the fat department! And I promise, you won't miss a bit of flavor!!


    NUTRITION FACTS (per serving of 2 cakes):

    BEFORE: 305 calories / 18.7g fat / 25.9g carbohydrates / 6.3g protein / 4g fiber
    AFTER: 164.3 calories / 1.3g fat / 27.6g carbohydrate / 10.2g protein / 4g fiber

    SAVES: 140.7 calories / 17.4g fat / 1.7g carbohydrate
    ADDS: 3.9g protein

     
     


    Original recipes by RACHAEL RAY for Well-Dressed Salmon and Crispy Mashed Potato Cakes can be found on Rachael Ray's offical site; www.rachaelray.com.
     

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