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Posts Tagged ‘garlic’

3:09 pm - Posted by Gregg

Who cares if summer heat is beating down on most of us? It’s still a great time of year to make my Chunky Turkey Chili recipe (the same one featured in my latest book, Weightless: My Life As A Fat Man And How I Escaped). Recently, I visited my local farmers market, where I purchased fresh spices (see picture, below) to use when making this recipe. And I have to tell you, it turned out great. So visit your farmers market for these ingredients (if you have one nearby) or buy the freshest versions of these ingredients as you can. Then join me in making this fail-safe recipe that’s a winner whether you’re trying to take off excess weight or simply working to maintain the success you’ve already achieved. Bon Appétit!

Ingredients (in order of appearance)
5 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
3 white onions, peeled & chopped
2 (two) 7 oz. cans of diced green chilies (mild or hot – your choice)
3 tbsp. fresh garlic, chopped (can also used jarred, but without added oil)
4 tbsp. chili powder (more if you dare)
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground cayenne pepper (more if you dare)
2+ lbs. lowfat ground turkey
1 (one) 6 lb., 6 oz. can (or several cans that equal the same) of ready cut diced tomatoes (in their own juice, no added sodium if available)
4 large bell peppers, chopped

Directions
In a large pot (the bigger the better), add the olive oil and chopped onions. Cover and cook over medium heat for several minutes (until the onions begin to soften).

Next, add the garlic, chili powder and cumin. Mix it up and then add both cans (liquid and all) of the diced green chilies to the diced onion. Cook covered, over medium heat for about 10 minutes.

Next, add the ground turkey — making sure to mix all of the meat into the mixture while keeping the turkey from “clumping” together (work to break it up into loose pieces/bits). Continue to cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally (and de-clumping the turkey when necessary).

Once the turkey is cooked through, add the canned tomatoes and chopped bell peppers, mix thoroughly, then cover and cook on high heat until the contents reach a boil. As soon as you see that your mixture is boiling, reduce the heat to LOW and cook for about 20 minutes more so all the flavors mix together and blend to perfection.

Makes approximately 18 servings

A Few Helpful Hints
Add a small green salad with carrot shavings and balsamic vinegar along with two to three multigrain crackers to create a complete meal.

After preparing this big batch of chili, I divide it into portion sizes (usually two per storage container) and then, after the containers cool off, stick them in the freezer. After a day or so of thawing (in the fridge) you can zap it in the microwave for a quick, delicious dinner anytime during the week. (You can even store single size portions and take the chili to work for an easy and delicious, microwavable lunch!)

It should be noted that this stuff is so good that you can even serve it to your friends who aren’t on a diet. (Trust me — they’ll never know they’re eating something super healthy.) I’ve even made a big batch of this recipe as a dip for parties and served it with multigrain chips along with sour cream and cheese on the side.

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February 28, 2015

Soup to the rescue

10:26 am - Posted by Gregg

With winter weather still making itself known, this is a great time of year to indulge in delicious and healthy soups. But don’t rely on store-bought kinds to fulfill your cool weather cravings (too much sodium, additives to preserve the contents, etc.). Instead, make your own delicious soup. This easy-to-make recipe combines nutrient-rich vegetables with other flavors of the season for a hearty and satisfying taste of nature’s finest veggies. Plus, you can make lots of it, separate it and store it (even in the freezer) for future use. Convenient, easy and tasty, too? Sounds like a late winter winner! Here’s how it’s done:

Ingredients
5 medium carrots, chopped
3 medium celery stalks, chopped
3 large white onions, chopped
2 large green or red bell peppers, chopped
2 gloves garlic, minced
1 lg. can of low-sodium tomatoes (in its own juice)
12 oz. green beans, chopped
3 medium zucchini, chopped
1/2 medium broccoli, chopped
1/2 pound fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/2 tsp. red pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1 fresh lemon or lime wedge (as garnish, optional)
Cilantro (as garnish, optional)

Directions
In a large nonstick pot, combine 3 tbsp. water, onions and garlic and allow heating for 5 minutes on low heat. Next, add carrots, celery and bell pepper. Cook while stirring for an additional 10 minutes on low heat. Next, stir in tomatoes (with liquid), then add green beans, zucchini, broccoli, spinach leaves, basil and spices. Add 1 cup of filtered water, then heat to boiling over high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer (stirring occasionally) for 15-20 minutes – or until vegetables become tender.

Serving Size Information
Serve 1 cup as a snack
Serve 2 cups as part of meal (add a small green salad with Balsamic Vinegar and 1/2 cup cottage cheese or another protein source to create a complete meal).

Bonus Tip
This soup can be easily separated into portions and frozen.

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January 25, 2015

Raising the bar

3:21 pm - Posted by Gregg

Faithful readers of this blog and my books know that I’m not a fan of meal replacement bars. But what I am a fan of is handy and healthy snack foods that we can have available to keep us away from the vending machines full of over-processed snacks that not only add to our waistline, but also confuse our metabolisms with all sorts of unnecessary ingredients. Thankfully, there are some innovative companies like Mediterra Mediterranean Nutrition that are offering us options that turn the average snack bars (even those that claim to be “healthy”) on their ears… Or on their packages anyway.

Gotta love a selection that includes actual savory flavors as well as sweeter varieties. Created to compliment a Mediterranean Diet, these healthy alternatives to junk food can be used with any eating plan or diet (after all, variety is the spice of life… Or something like that). The pre-packaged portions are great for those of us who still have issues with portion control (that still includes me by the way).

What’s more, it’s fun to get inventive with the savory flavors (which include Sundried Tomato & Basil and Black Olive & Walnuts). For example, both make a great — and healthier — alternative to adding croutons to salads or soups. I love crumbling them onto salads for dinner parties. People think I’ve created some sort of super healthy, super delicious concoction and are usually very impressed. Do I admit I simply took the ingredients out of the “clean label” wrappers and that it involved no work at all? Usually. But only after the compliments have died down!

Mediterra’s website (full of interesting articles for anyone interested in investigating the Mediterranean diet) has a bunch of recipes that use their bars in very unique ways (check out the Traditional Mediterranean Green Bean Salad with Sundried Tomato & Basil Bar recipe, below). This is what I love about these bars. They’re not about meal replacement. They’re about meal — and life — enhancement… With real food. (Crazy concept — at least it seems to be to many of today’s traditional food manufacturers.)

And no, none of this is a paid endorsement. I consider it my duty to share ideas for food products that can contribute to our overall health rather than rob us of it.

Recipe: Traditional Mediterranean Green Bean Salad
(made with with Sundried Tomato & Basil Bar)

Ingredients:
1 pound fresh green beans, trimmed
2 scallions, trimmed and cut into paper-thin rounds
1 small garlic clove, minced
16 cherry tomatoes, halved
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (preferably Greek)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon Greek honey
2 Mediterra Sundried Tomato-Basil bars, chopped
Salt and pepper (to taste)

Preparation:
1. Steam green beans in a steamer for 5 to 8 minutes, or until al dente.
2. Once the beans have cooked, transfer them into a colander, and run cold water over them immediately. Let the green beans drain well.
3. Place the green beans, scallions, garlic and tomatoes in a large serving bowl.
4. In a separate bowl, whisk together the olive oil, balsamic, honey, salt and pepper. Pour onto the salad and toss. Garnish with the broken up Mediterra Tomato-Basil bars and serve.

Serves 4-6

Recipe used by permission. For more recipes utilizing Mediterra bars, click here. For anyone wanting to check out the various flavors of Mediterra bars, you can visit their website or even find them at select Target stores. (If you don’t see them at your local Target, ask for them and other healthy snack alternatives! The more available these types of foods are for purchase, they healthier we’ll all be!)

Photo Source: Mediterra

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5:53 pm - Posted by Gregg

This drool-worthy Gregg’s Chunky Chili was absolutely one of my go-to meals while I was taking off over 250 pounds of excess weight. And it still is one of my favorites today (yes, I still make it all the time — even during the summer months). Besides being delicious, it’s incredibly healthy and makes for great leftovers. It freezes, thaws and reheats (microwaves!) beautifully. So I always make a huge batch (and it will be easy for you to do the same in order to enjoy this hearty — and health — dish for weeks to come).

Ingredients (in order of appearance)
5 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil
3 white onions, peeled & chopped
2 (two) 7 oz. cans of diced green chilies (mild or hot – your choice)
3 tbsp. fresh garlic, chopped (can also used jarred, but without added oil)
4 tbsp. chili powder (more if you dare)
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. ground cayenne pepper (more if you dare)
2+ lbs. lowfat ground turkey
1 (one) 6 lb., 6 oz. can (or several cans that equal the same) of ready cut diced tomatoes (in their own juice, no added sodium if available)
4 large bell peppers, chopped

Directions
In a large pot (the bigger the better), add the olive oil and chopped onions. Cover and cook over medium heat for several minutes (until the onions begin to soften).

Next, add the garlic, chili powder and cumin. Mix it up and then add both cans (liquid and all) of the diced green chilies to the diced onion. Cook covered, over medium heat for about 10 minutes.

Next, add the ground turkey — making sure to mix all of the meat into the mixture while keeping the turkey from “clumping” together (work to break it up into loose pieces/bits). Continue to cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally (and de-clumping the turkey when necessary).

Once the turkey is cooked through, add the canned tomatoes and chopped bell peppers, mix thoroughly, then cover and cook on high heat until the contents reach a boil. As soon as you see that your mixture is boiling, reduce the heat to LOW and cook for about 20 minutes more so all the flavors mix together and blend to perfection.

Makes approximately 18 servings

A Few Helpful Hints
Add a small green salad with carrot shavings and balsamic vinegar along with two to three multigrain crackers to create a complete meal.

After preparing this big batch of chili, I divide it into portion sizes (usually two per storage container) and then, after the containers cool off, stick them in the freezer. After a day or so of thawing (in the fridge) you can zap it in the microwave for a quick, delicious dinner anytime during the week. (You can even store single size portions and take the chili to work for an easy and delicious, microwavable lunch!)

It should be noted that this stuff is so good that you can even serve it to your friends who aren’t on a diet. (Trust me — they’ll never know they’re eating something super healthy.) I’ve even made a big batch of this recipe as a dip for parties and served it with multigrain chips along with sour cream and cheese on the side.

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October 2, 2012

Recipe: Just Soup-er

9:07 am - Posted by Gregg

With summer in our rearview mirror, autumn becomes a great time of year to indulge in delicious and healthy soups. But don’t rely on store-bought soups to fulfill your cooler weather cravings (too much sodium, etc.). Instead, make your own. This easy-to-make recipe combines nutrient-rich vegetables with other flavors of the season for a hearty and satisfying taste of fall. Plus, you can make lots of it, separate it and store it (even in the freezer) for future use. Convenience, ease and tasty, too? You bet! Here’s how it’s done:

Ingredients
5 medium carrots, chopped
3 medium celery stalks, chopped
3 large white onions, chopped
2 gloves garlic, minced
1 lg. can of Low-Sodium Tomatoes (in its own juice)
12 oz. green beans, chopped
3 medium zucchini, chopped
1/2 medium broccoli, chopped
1 lg. package of baby spinach leaves
1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped
1/2 tsp. red pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. fresh ground pepper
1 fresh lime wedge (as garnish, optional)
Parsley (as garnish, optional)

Directions
In a large nonstick pot, combine 3 tbsp. water, onions and garlic and allow heating for 5 minutes on low heat. Next, add carrots and celery. Cook while stirring for an additional 10 minutes on low heat. Next, stir in tomatoes (with liquid), then add green beans, zucchini, broccoli, spinach leaves, basil and spices. Add 1 cup of filtered water, then heat to boiling over high heat, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer (stirring occasionally) for 15-20 minutes – or until vegetables become tender.

Serving Size Information
Serve 1 cup as a snack
Serve 2 cups as part of meal (add a small green salad with Balsamic Vinegar and 1/2 cup cottage cheese to create a complete meal).

Bonus Tip
Soup can be separated into portions and easily frozen.

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