Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Contest Winner

Hello all bloggers! As promised, I unveil a detailed report on last week's Healthy Snack Night contest (where my kids were challenged with making healthy, tasty snacks). Served up alongside reruns of Mork & Mindy, this night was a great success!

Each kid was given a score card and had to rate each other. The categories were:

  • effort
  • nutrition
  • taste
  • presentation

I was proud to say they had given each other very commendable points and applauded each other with their efforts (go figure!?). So without further ado, here are the results:

Samantha: Frozen Pineapple Sorbet
Zachary: Mint Chocolate Shakes (his own recipe)
Adam: Berry Smoothies

It seemed to be a frozen dessert theme night. So to mix it up a bit, I also whipped up a hot taco dip (to kill the chill).

The winner was Samantha who really kicked up her presentation by serving hers in martini glasses with skewers of blueberries and fancy umbrellas. Great job, Samantha! Zachary scored the highest in the taste category with Adam scoring the highest in nutrition. A grand effort by all!

As usual, they are more than willing to share their recipes.

Samantha's Fruit Sherbet
this recipe dates all the way back to 1933

1 cup lemon juice
1 cup sugar
1 cup orange juice
1 cup skim milk
1/2 cup pineapple juice

In pitcher or large bowl, mix together the lemon juice and sugar. Stir in the orange juice, skim milk and pineapple juice. Pour into a container and freeze until stiff. Scoop serving size into preferred dish.

Calories: 375 Fat: 1.3 grams
photo by celest mischa on flickr

Zachary's Low-Fat Chocolate Mint Shakes
photo by sanfran annie on flickr

In blender add:

About 8 scoops of Mint Chocolate Frozen Yogurt (or more if you like)
About 4 cups Skim Milk (or more depending on thickness you like)
1 teaspoon peppermint extract

Blend until smooth and serve!

Adam's All-Fruit Smoothies

2 Bananas, peeled and chopped
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup sliced, fresh strawberries
1 1/2 cups vanilla soymilk
1 cup pomegranate-blueberry juice
1 cup vanilla frozen yogurt

In blender, combine all ingredients. Pour and serve. Adam garnished each glass with a strawberry for an added touch.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Snack Night

photo by lessignets.com

Every week, my family and I invest ourselves in front of a good movie (usually an oldie that Jeremy and I can supplant ourselves in; an attempt to revisit youth via Ferris Bueller or Marty McFly).

These cozy nights consist of blankets, fizzy drinks and evil snacks. But this week, I have presented my kids with a challenge. Whoever can whip up the healthiest and tastiest snack will win a prize. Not sure what that prize will be yet (a week with no chores?? Later bedtime?? Ideas are welcome!).

So this Friday night, after I am sent to the grocery store with the kids' ingredients lists in hand, my husband and I are guinea pigs to what they'll be serving up. I will post the winner next week.

For now, here is one of my favourite snacks. I hope it finds your family snuggled up in front of your own homemade movie night; blankets and all. It may not be the winner of the healthy contest, but it's darn good.

photo by sunflower catering on flickr

Sun-Dried Tomato Spread

2 packages light cream cheese; softened
2 cups light Hellmann's Mayo
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 tsp. minced garlic (from jar)
1 jar oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes; drained and chopped
2/3 cup chopped roasted sweet red peppers
2 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
2 old cheddar cheese
1 cup grated parmesan cheese; divided

In large bowl, combine cream cheese, mayo, onion and garlic until mixed. Stir in tomatoes and peppers. Add the mozzarella and cheddar cheeses and 3/4 cup parmesan.

Transfer to greased 9" x 13" baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining parmesan. Bake uncovered at 350 for 20 minutes or until edges are bubbly and browned. Serve with crackers and blue tortilla chips.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Good news, Cookies and Catwalks followers! We've all been invited over to Laura Francis' cottage! Pack your swim trunks and coolers and head on over! You'll know her when you see her...she's the one on the dock with her nose in a book; glancing away only for a moment to motion us over with an energetic wave, welcoming us onto her little island in Northern Ontario.

Whether you know her by her blog (Black By Popular Demand), or through her published articles in Chatelaine Magazine, you won't regret stepping outside your heat-soaked suburbs to join her dockside and talk about some great reads this summer such as The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters or The Postmistress by Sarah Blake. This girl is my go-to guide for all addictive literature!

She's also whipped up some lunch fare for us - scrumptious salad with all kinds of good stuff that takes seconds to toss together. Lots of time to get back to the important stuff like twisting caps off frosty, cool beers and swimming with the loons (the birds, not the guests).

I'm heading out early to beat the traffic. I'll see you there:

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