Larrupin

Uncommonly Good

Snack Mix: Healthy and Tasty!

This is my new favorite snack food. I accidentally came up with it a few days ago.

It’s raw almonds, roasted, salted soybeans, and mixed dried berries.
I found raw almonds in the bulk grains and nuts at Homeland at less than $6/lb. It’s the best price in town and they’re always in stock. I checked out the other bulk offerings and came across the roasted, salted soybeans. They’re under $3/lb. so I tried them.
First bite is sort of …eh.  But one bite leads to another. They seem to want to be combined with something so I added a few almonds to a handful of soybeans. And it never hurts to add some dark chocolate to the mix.
Last week I was shopping for dried fruit to add to a batch of granola and found what I wanted at Dollar General.  Dried Mixed Berries at $1.50 for 4 oz. Made by Amport Foods, it includes cranberries, golden raisins and cherriesAntioxidants the package reminded me. Sold.
I’d already eaten most of the granola and I was out of dark chocolate. I wanted something sweet so I opened the fruit and tossed it into the mix. Good call!
Crunchy, sweet, salty. Healthy.
Larrupin.

July 28, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Roast Chicken Salad with Feta

I roasted a chicken in the “cool” of the morning today and put this together for lunch.

Look yummy?

It was!

Chicken, avocado, tomato, feta, spinach, bacon and a few other odd and ends made up this healthy, tasty, warm summer salad. It was only warm because the chicken was less than an hour out of the oven, but it would be just as good if I’d pulled the chicken out of the fridge to build this.

Starting at the bottom of the bowl, here’s what’s in it.

  • 1 roast chicken thigh
  • 1/2 tomato, diced
  • 1/2 avocado, sliced
  • 1 sliced green onion
  • 1 handful torn spinach
  • 1–2 T Athenos Feta
  • 1 slice crispy bacon, crumbled
  • fresh cracked black pepper
Here’s the meat from one cooked chicken thigh.
Add about a half a tomato, diced, and half an avocado, sliced and fanned out.
Next add slices of a green onion and a handful of torn spinach.
Feta and crispy bacon make up the next layer.
Sweet and spicy vinaigrette.

I made the dressing in a recycled pimiento jar. It’s the small jar, the two ounce size I think.

Pour fruit vinegar into small jar with tight fitting lid. I used homemade Cranapple Cider Vinegar. (The red layer in the middle.)
Add an equal amount of olive oil. (Top layer.)
Next add about a teaspoon (or so) of honey mustard, and about a tablespoon of honey. (The botttom layer.)
1/2 teaspoon your favorite herb/s, finely ground.

Tightly cap the jar and shake well. I used about 1/2 of it on this salad. The other half will go on another salad in a couple of days.

July 22, 2010 Posted by | Brown Bag, Salad | , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Favorite Ingredient: Feta Cheese

I first tasted feta cheese at Greek House, here in Norman, Oklahoma well over 25 years ago. It was also the first time I had gyros, which by the way, are authentic Greek and the absolute best. Not heart healthy by any means. The gyros meat cooks on vertical spits and the resulting grease is used for the fries.  Oh. My. Gosh. Soooo good. But back to the feta. The gyros plate—a pile of meat, fries, and Greek salad—is garnished with a Greek olive and a cube of feta. It was love at first bite.

For years, eating at Greek House was the only time I ate feta. Here in the big middle of the U S of A,  good ole American processed was the go-to cheese for most families, although sometimes it wasn’t really cheese. I’d long outgrown those orange slices when I came across these scrumptious white cubes of feta. At some point I came across it in the grocery store and put it in my cart. It’s been a staple in my kitchen ever since and I’m always finding, and looking for, new ways to eat it. 

I usually buy Athenos Feta Traditional by the block because it lasts longer than the crumbled feta.  I also like the Athenos packaging because it’s reclosable. When I want some, I’ll slice an appropriately sized slice and break it into chunks to top almost any salad or soup. 

Here it is on my Spinach Steak Salad with lots of fresh cracked pepper. I think I made a red wine vinegar vinaigrette to go with this. It’s a great garnish for soups as well, especially tomato and mushroom soups.

I switched from cheddar to feta as my go-to cheese garnish five or six years ago because I like the different spark of flavor it provides.  Today I found out on the Athenos facebook page that it does more than that. Here’s what they had to say about switching to feta.

Changing your salad topping from cheddar to Feta gives you
1) 6 grams of protein
2) 1/3 less fat and
3) 30% fewer calories!

They didn’t provide a quantity, for the cheeses, but 1/3 less fat and 30% fewer calories for equal portions sounds good to me.

July 7, 2010 Posted by | Salad | , | 1 Comment

   

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