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  • The Low Fat Chick 9:43 pm on December 20, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , olive oil, , red wine, squid,   

    Calamari Linguine 

    Calamari is so great fried, but of course I cannot eat fried foods anymore so I opted for another way to eat it. This dish is quite tasty and a different way to eat calamari.  Fairly easy to make, which was perfect for this week of Christmas. I am saving all my energy to cook a ham and dessert for the big day, so easy dinners is what I’m going for this week. Happy Holidays!

    2 tablespoons olive oil
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1 (28 ounce) can tomato puree
    28 fluid ounces water
    1/2 cup red wine
    1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
    1 teaspoon white sugar
    1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
    1 (16 ounce) package wheat linguine
    1 1/2 pounds squid, cleaned and sliced into rings
    parmesan cheese (optional)
    black pepper (optional)
    • Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the garlic and cook until lightly brown. Stir in tomato puree, water, red wine, salt, sugar and crushed red pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes, stirring occasionally
    • Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add linguine and cook for 8 to 10 minutes or until al dente; drain.
    • Stir calamari into the tomato puree mixture. Continue to simmer approximately 15 minutes, until squid is opaque. Check frequently to avoid overcooking squid. Serve squid and sauce over cooked linguine.  Top with parmesan cheese and black pepper, if desired.

    Servings: 8

    Calories: About 450 per serving.

  • The Low Fat Chick 7:26 am on December 18, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , olive oil,   

    Basil Pesto with Angel Hair Pasta 

    I am a fanatic about eating anything with basil, which is why I have a plant in my home.  The first time I tasted pesto I was hooked and vowed to make my own. Often pestos are made with lots of olive oil, which is healthy, but too much olive oil takes a toll on the calories.  So, after searching, trying, and modifying different recipes, I settled on the following simple recipe. I cannot tell you how yummy this is and still moist with less olive oil. I topped angel hair pasta and shredded chicken with the pesto and had an excellent dinner. I also made rosemary bread sticks to complement the meal. This has become an instant favorite.

    2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
    1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted*
    1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
    3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    2 tablespoons water
    2 medium or 1 large clove garlic, quartered
    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
    6 oz cooked, shredded chicken breast
    8 oz cooked angel hair pasta, preferably wheat


    • Place basil, pine nuts, Parmigiano-Reggiano, oil, water, garlic, salt and pepper in a food processor or blender. Pulse a few times, then process until smooth, or to the desired consistency, scraping down the sides occasionally.
    • In a large bowl, add pasta, chicken, and pesto. Toss to mix.

    *To toast nuts, heat a skillet on medium-high heat. Add nuts. Stir occasionally and toast for 2-3 minutes. Be careful not to burn.

    Servings: 3

    Calories: About 640 per serving.

  • The Low Fat Chick 1:09 pm on November 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , olive oil, , , ,   

    Shrimp Jalapeno Tamale Casserole 

    A few weeks ago I made tamales after eating some delicious ones while in Vegas.  Well, the recipe tasted right but I could not get the consistency of the tamales to my liking once I cooked the batter in the corn husks. Of course I will attempt again, but this time I decided to toss out the corn husks and make a casserole instead.  The results? Super tasty and much easier to assemble. Top this with a chipotle salsa and you have heaven on a plate!  


    2 cups masa
    3 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
    2 cloves garlic, finely minced
    2 jalapenos, chopped with seeds
    2-2 1/2 cups water, divided
    1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    2 tablespoons butter, softened
    1 1/2 pounds shrimp, peeled, deveined and chopped
    1 1/2 cups chipotle salsa


    • Preheat oven to 375°F. Put a kettle of water on to heat for the water bath. Coat an 8-inch-square baking dish with cooking spray.
    • Whisk masa, oregano, baking powder, thyme, salt, pepper, garlic, and jalapenos in a large bowl. Add 2 cups water and beat with a whisk till combined. Add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until the mixture is the consistency of thick pancake batter. Add oil and butter. Whisk more to get a smooth batter. 
    • Spread half the batter in the prepared baking dish. Evenly scatter shrimp on top, then cover with the remaining batter, smoothing it evenly to the sides.
    • Place the baking dish in a larger pan, transfer to the oven and pour boiling water into the larger pan to about halfway up the sides of the baking dish. Cover both pans with a piece of foil. Bake until set, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Let stand, covered, for 10 minutes.
    • Serve each portion topped with salsa.  

    Servings: 9.

    Calories: About 280 per serving.

  • The Low Fat Chick 12:48 pm on November 15, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , olive oil,   

    Balsamic Sesame Soy Glazed Chicken 

    Chicken is one of the best, most affordable meals out there, which is why I love chicken and am constantly trying to find ways to reinvent it. Well, I came up with this delicious sweet glaze to pour over chicken breasts.  I am always watching my calories, so I typically buy skinless chicken breast, as the skin contains fat, but with this recipe, I changed my tune. Buying chicken breast with the skin on and bone in provides a moister chicken breast. The trick is to remove the skin after it is cooked to keep the flavor but not eat the fat.  I fell in love with this recipe and will make many times over.  You can also toss this sauce over cooked chicken wings as well, but wings of course have more calories, so I stick to the chicken breasts.  


    4 pounds chicken breast, with skin
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 tablespoon black pepper
    3/4 cup balsamic vinegar
    1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
    1/4 cup soy sauce, reduced sodium
    3 teaspoons brown sugar
    4 cloves garlic, pressed


    • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
    • Wash chicken and pat dry. Place in a shallow baking pan.  Massage the chicken with olive oil,  salt, and pepper. Bake in oven for 1 hour to 1 hour and 30 minutes.  Once chicken is done, let slightly cool and remove skin.
    • While chicken cooks, simmer vinegar, sesame oil, soy sauce, sugar, and garlic in a small heavy sauce pan. Still occasionally, until reduced to about 1/3 cup for about 12-15 minutes.
    • Remove from heat. Let slightly cool to thicken and drizzle over chicken.

    Servings: 4.

    Calories: About 450 per serving.

  • The Low Fat Chick 5:43 am on November 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , olive oil, ,   

    Mussels in Tomato Basil Broth 

    I like to order mussels when eating out, as it is often a good healthy option at most restaurants. But some restaurants cook the mussels in tons of fattening butter, which while yummy, it is not so good on my heart. So, I searched for a recipe that was healthier, and where I could really enjoy the healthy benefits of mussels. I did not have to look far, as this perfect recipe was in a cook book on my shelf written by Dave Lieberman from the Food Network. I watch so much of the Food Network and Cooking Channel, that I knew this recipe would not disappoint…and boy was I right!  The top-notch flavor was so good, you would have thought I was eating at a fancy bistro.  The only things I changed in the recipe was I added a full tablespoon of pepper flakes and used chopped tomatoes. I like a little heat in my meals, which is why I added more flakes. Also, I chose chopped tomatoes so they would scoop up better in the mussel shells. Perfect Saturday night dinner!  I will make this many times over, as it is now on my list of favorites.


    3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
    8 to 10 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    1 28 ounce can chopped tomatoes
    1 cup dry white wine, like chardonnay
    1 cup water
    1 tablespoon hot red pepper flakes
    Salt, to taste
    2 pounds mussels, scrubbed and debearded
    A big handful of roughly chopped fresh basil
    Crusty bread (optional)


    • Heat oil over high heat in a pot large enough to hold mussels comfortably.
    • Add garlic and cook just until you can smell it, about 30 seconds. Pour in tomatoes, wine and water. Add red pepper flakes and a big pinch salt.
    • Bring to a boil and cook until broth is slightly thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.
    • Stir mussels into broth, cover pot and cook until mussels open, 4 to 5 minutes. Throw in basil and give a good stir.
    • Carefully, so that you don’t splash tomato all over the place, ladle mussels into serving dishes.
    • Serve with bread.

    Servings: 2.

    Calories: About 430 per serving, excluding bread.

    Original recipe cited from Foodnetwork.com, Dave Lieberman.

  • The Low Fat Chick 1:05 am on September 23, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , olive oil, , ,   

    Mustard Pork Loin Chops with Caramelized Red Onions 

    I am so fascinated with fresh herbs, so when I came across this recipe for mustard pork with fresh thyme, I had to try it. I used coarse-grained mustard which was perfect, so do not substitute with smooth mustard. After marinating the pork loin chops, the preparation was easy.  If you do not like onions, skip this recipe because the flavor of caramelized red onions is a must and like gold when paired with the chops.  Absolutely delicious! I served my chops with red onions drizzled on top, which looked like an image out of a gourmet magazine. The red color of the onions just made the meal so pretty I almost could not eat it. But, of course I did and enjoyed every minute. Super yummy!! What I love about onions is when you caramelize them, they become really sweet, which made this meal just right. Note: For a light pork chop, be sure to purchase pork loin with the bone in it (for flavor) and trim as much fat off as you can before marinating and cooking.


    4 (6 to 8 ounce) bone-in pork chops, cut 1-inch thick
    1/4 cup olive oil
    3 tablespoons coarse-grained mustard
    1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
    1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    Leaves from a few sprigs fresh thyme, finely chopped
    1 tablespoon vegetable oil
    2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
    1 tablespoon honey
    1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
    Sea Salt, to taste
    Freshly ground black pepper, to taste


    • In a shallow dish, mix together olive oil, mustard, salt, and pepper. Toss the chops with remaining ingredients and let marinate 1 hour or up to overnight covered in the refrigerated. Bring to room temperature before cooking.
    • Heat broiler or grill. Cook pork until nicely browned on both sides, about 6 minutes on each side.
    • While the chops are finishing, heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in a large, skillet. Add onions and cook for 4 minutes. Drizzle onions with honey and vinegar. Cook until softened and lightly caramelized, about 10-15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
    • Serve chops with little heap of onions.

    Servings: 4 servings.
    Calories: About 600*

    *The calories seem high but the onions are the side dish, so do not serve with anything else and it will be a light meal.

    Original recipe cited from Foodnetwork.com, Dave Lieberman.

  • The Low Fat Chick 12:46 am on July 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , olive oil, ,   

    Garlic Shrimp Angel Hair Pasta 

    I am a lover of pasta, but recognize I must eat wheat pasta, as regular pasta does not have any nutritional value and the starches turn to sugar in our bodies (sugar turns to fat). Try this wheat pasta recipe, as it incorporates the basics of an Italian dish. Very simple, but oh so tasty.  Note: It is important to use freshly grated Parmesan cheese, as the flavor really tops off the dish. Do not try to substitute the pre-grated stuff as it is not good with flavor. On the other hand, if you do not think fresh flavor is important, then go for it.


    8 ounces dry wheat angel hair pasta
    1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
    4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    3 green onions, chopped
    1 cup mushrooms, sliced
    1 tablespoon chili-garlic sauce
    1 cup freshly frozen deveined shrimp*
    1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
    Optional: ground pepper


    Place frozen shrimp in a bowl of medium warm water for ten minutes. Do not place in hot water. After ten minutes, peel and remove tails from shrimp. Set drained shrimp aside.

    Cook pasta as directed on package. Drain pasta well and set aside.

    Meanwhile, heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat.

    Sauté parsley, garlic, green onions, mushrooms, chili garlic sauce, and shrimp in oil. Sauté for 5-7 minutes till mushrooms are cooked down and generate juice, and the shrimp is no longer translucent.

    Mix pasta with garlic mixture. Top each serving with parmesan cheese and ground pepper.

*Only use freshly frozen shrimp, as the prepackaged frozen shrimp often contains large amounts of salt and preservatives.

Servings:  4 servings.
Calories: About 550 per serving.

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