Friday, December 5, 2008

Healthy Holiday Dip

The Holidays are here in full effect and so are all the parties, but the big question is
"What should I bring??" I have found the perfect delicious and festive dip to wow your guests, or guests at any parties you will be attending. I found this recipe while attending a healthy cooking class at the University of California San Diego. I adjusted it a little and decreased the amount of heat, but if you like it hot, just add more jalapeno! It is a Cranberry Salsa Dip with non fat or low fat cream cheese. The colors are ideal for the season with the lovely red of the cranberries and the crisp green from the cilantro and jalapeno!

3 cups fresh or frozen (defrosted) cranberries
4 green onions minced
1/4 jalapeno minced with seeds removed
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fresh cilantro minced
2 tbsp fresh ginger, finely grated
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 8oz package of fat free/low fat cream cheese
*Reserve a few fresh cranberries and sprigs of cilantro for garnish

Place your cranberries in your food processor and pulse into finely chopped, but not mushy. Transfer to a bowl. Stir in your green onions, jalapenos, sugar, cilantro, ginger, and lemon juice. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours to let the flavors mingle. (If you taste the dip immediately the flavor is too sharp..with time it mellows and sweetens!)
Although the salsa is delicious alone, to arrange it with the cream cheese place the block on a pretty plate and pour the salsa over the cheese. Add cranberries and cilantro sprigs for garnish and serve with whole wheat crackers or mini toasts.

Other serving ideas are to prepare the bites ahead of time for guests. Spread 1/2 teaspoon of cream cheese on each cracker and top with 1 teaspoon salsa. If you will be bringing this to a party get a holiday mini loaf dish (Michaels has them for $1!) , spread the cream cheese on the bottom and pour over the salsa and the mini loaf dish makes a festive hostess gift!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Paris Street Food

It's been awhile since I posted but with good reason, I was busy getting married and on my honeymoon! Now that we are back I have many pictures and food and wine fairy tales from our travels to share!

Since I was a little girl my dream had always been to go to Paris so when we began planning our honeymoon and Paris was going to be in my future I was so ecstatic!! I dreamed of eating a crepe freshly made along the streets of Paris while strolling into all the beautifully decorated shops and markets! One of my favorite streets (pictured here with me enjoying my first Parisian crepe) was Rue Mouffetard. The crepe I got was heavenly! It was so simple too! It was a "crepe de framboise" ( raspberry crepe) made right on the street in front of me and filled with scoopfuls of Bonne Maman Raspberry Jam. This is my new favorite brand of jam that was everywhere in France. It was so fresh, tasting like the raspberries were just plucked and now melting into my warm crepe! In honor of this delicious street food snack I have come up with my own recipe that is pretty close posted below:

1 1/2 cups flour
2 cups skim milk
2 eggs (lightly beaten)
1 1/2 tbsp light oil
1 tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
Pour the milk into the flour, add oil, eggs, and sugar. Stir. Let the batter rest for 1 hour to help ensure best texture. The batter must be thin and fluid so you might need to add more milk. Oil a frying pan, pour in a small amount of batter and spread aruond the bottom of the pan. Let it cook for about 1 minute, flip, cook the other side. Once removed from pan fill with Bonne Maman Raspberry Jam, fold and close your eyes and imagine you are in Paris!

Saturday, May 31, 2008

What's Sexy To Drink In The City?

I went with girlfriends to see the opening night of the long awaited movie "Sex And The City". It was fabulous to see so many ladies dolled up for a night on the town! Of course, the evening's cocktail of choice was none other than the Cosmopolitan. The Cosmopolitan can thank "Sex And The City" for it's rise to stardom, although it's birth is said to have occurred in the 1970's.

Here is my favorite Cosmopolitan recipe:

In your shaker mix:
2 parts vodka (L'Orange Grey Goose is my favorite..but any citrus vodka works),
1 part triple sec
1 part cranberry juice (Ocean Spray 100% juice is my favorite)
Juice of 1 key lime or a couple drops of bottled key lime juice (key lime is a little sweeter)
Shake with ice...pour into your chilled martini glass and if you can find them drop in some frozen cranberries...they work as a great garnish and they keep your Cosmo cold without watering it down!

Click here for the SATC Movie website that has trailers, quizzes...and more!