* Frozen Hibiscus Margaritas *

Recipe Source:  http://prettygirlscook.com/2012/05/01/frozen-hibiscus-margaritas
(Originally posted for Cinco de Mayo celebrations!)

For this recipe I used my ice cream machine to get these margaritas nice and icy.  I hate when margaritas are watered down, which is why I hate adding regular ice cubes.  When you use this method, your margarita can also double as a dessert.  After about 15-20 minutes in the ice cream machine, the mixture is the perfect consistency for a great margarita.  If you freeze the mixture, it becomes refreshing hibiscus margarita sorbet.  Try serving the frozen sorbet with a little tequila or champagne on top.


INGREDIENTS:

1 cup water
2 teaspoons dried hibiscus flowers
1 vanilla bean, split
½ cup sugar
Zest and juice of 3 limes
Juice of 1 orange
½ cup tequila

PREPARATION:

Place hibiscus flowers and vanilla bean in a saucepan with the cup of water and bring to a boil.  After water is boiling remove from heat, cover and let sit for 20 minutes.  Strain mixture to remove hibiscus flowers and vanilla bean.  Add mixture back to pan and add sugar.  Simmer for about 5 minutes until sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat and add lime zest, lime juice, orange juice, and tequila.  Chill mixture until it has cooled completely.

Once mixture is cool, place in your ice cream machine and process according to manufacturers instructions.  After about 20 minutes, mixture is ready to serve.  You can also freeze and serve as sorbet.

* I used a lime zest mixed with salt to rim the glasses.

* Fruit Skewers with Cardamom and Mint *

Recipe Source:  http://newhope360.com/recipes/fruit-skewers-cardamom-and-mint
Serves:  4

Combine tropical fruit with a spiced syrup, nutritious oils, and refreshing mint for a truly healthy sweet snack.  Don’t worry if the fruits listed aren’t all available—just use whichever fruits you can find.

INGREDIENTS:

1 1/2-2 cups* pineapple, cut into bite-size pieces
2 kiwifruit, cut into bite-size pieces
1 mango, cut into bite-size pieces
8 strawberries, halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons flaxseed oil
2 tablespoons dark agave nectar
2 teaspoons freshly crushed cardamom seeds
1 tablespoon chia seeds
4 sprigs fresh mint, stems removed

PREPARATION:

Skewer fruit with short bamboo skewers, alternating to create an attractive pattern.  Place skewers on a large plate.

Whisk oil and agave nectar together in a small bowl until emulsified.  Add cardamom and chia seeds and whisk well.  Let mixture rest at least 5 minutes.  Whisk again and check consistency; it should be quite thick.

Stack mint leaves and cut crosswise into 1/8-inch-wide strips.  Fluff to separate.

Just before serving, brush agave mixture over both sides of skewered fruit.  Sprinkle mint strips over both sides and serve at once.

Nutritional Info:

PER SERVING:
 199 cal, 8g fat (2g mono, 5g poly, 1g sat), 0mg chol, 2g protein, 34g carb, 5g fiber, 2mg sodium
*  About one-fourth of a pineapple.

* Granola Cobbler *

Recipe Source:  Putter’s Mom 🙂
Yield:  6 servings

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups sliced peeled fresh pears
2 cups fresh or frozen raspberries
3/4 cup packed brown sugar, divided
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, divided
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons cold butter
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 cups granola
1/2 cup 1% low-fat milk

PREPARATION:

In a large bowl, combine the pears, raspberries, 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and lemon.  Spoon into a greased 9-inch pie plate.

In a small bowl, combine the flour and remaining brown sugar and cinnamon; cut in cold butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Stir together granola and milk in a small bowl.  Let stand 5 minutes.

Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes or until filling is bubbly and topping is golden brown.   Cool for 10 minutes.  Serve with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt if desired.

* Parmesan Crisps *

Recipe Source:  www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/giada-de-laurentiis/parmesan-crisps-recipe/index.html
Total Time:  10 minutes
Prep Time:  5 minutes
Cook Time:  5 minutes
Yield:  8-10 crisps

Excellent to serve with soups or salads.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

PREPARATION:

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

2.  Pour a heaping tablespoon of Parmesan onto a silicone or parchment lined baking sheet and lightly pat down (a silicone baking sheet is highly recommended).  Repeat with the remaining cheese, spacing the spoonfuls about 1/2 inch apart.

3.  Bake for 3 to 5 minutes or until golden and crisp.  Cool.

* Spiced Chickpeas and Greens with Parsley Oil *

Recipe Source:  http://newhope360.com/recipes/spiced-chickpeas-and-greens-parsley-oil
Prep Time:  15 minutes
Cook Time:  15 minutes
Serves:  4

Classic Middle Eastern spices enliven high-fiber chickpeas, which speed toxin removal in the colon.  This recipe also features a brilliant-green oil made with loads of parsley, long used in detox plans for its mild diuretic and kidney-flushing effects.  You’ll have leftover oil, so use it to add flavor and a cleansing component to other meals.  Serve this dish with quinoa on the side.

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon olive oil
1 bunch scallions (finely chopped)
2 cloves garlic (minced)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Dash cayenne pepper
1/2 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
1 – 15 oz. can chickpeas (garbanzos) rinsed and drained
4 cups finely chopped fresh chard leaves (stems discarded)
3/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley, divided
2 teaspoons dried mint or 2 tablespoons fresh mint
Lemon Wedges

PREPARATION:

In a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat and cook scallions for 1 minute, until just softened.  Add garlic and spices; cook for 1 minute more, stirring.  Stir in broth, scraping up spices from pan bottom.  Add chickpeas, cover, and cook until chickpeas are infused with flavors, 5–7 minutes.  Add chard and ¼ cup parsley, stirring to coat well.  Cook for 2–3 minutes, until chard is just wilted.

Meanwhile, combine remaining ½ cup olive oil, remaining ½ cup parsley, and mint in a food processor; process until smooth (yields 2/3 cup).

Divide chickpea mixture among four plates.  Drizzle with parsley oil.  Squeeze lemon juice over all, and serve hot, with additional parsley oil on the side.

Nutritional Info (per serving with 2 tablespoons parsley oil):
414 cal, 30g fat (22g mono, 4g poly, 4g sat), 0mg chol, 7g protein, 29g carb, 6g fiber, 340mg sodium

* Matcha Green Tea Drink *

Recipe Link:  http://newhope360.com/recipes/matcha-green-tea-drink
Prep Time:  5 minutes
Serves:  2

For a cleansing alternative to your morning coffee, this ultralight smoothie combines avocado’s healthy monounsaturated fats with green tea’s anti-inflammatory actions.  Add grated ginger to boost digestion and increase circulation.  If you can’t find matcha, grind green tea leaves in a spice mill or coffee grinder.

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups unsweetened almond milk
2 cups baby spinach leaves (loosely packed )
1/2 avocado (cubed)
1-2 teaspoons matcha green tea powder
1/2 cup crushed ice
Raw unfiltered honey, agave, or stevia (to taste)

PREPARATION:

In a blender, combine almond milk, spinach, avocado, and matcha powder.  Purée until smooth.  Add ice and purée again until smooth and creamy.

Sweeten to taste and serve immediately.

Nutritional Info (per serving assuming 1 teaspoon honey):
118 cal, 5g fat (3g mono, 1g poly, 1g sat), 0mg chol, 3g protein, 12g carb, 4g fiber, 194mg sodium

* Lemony Quinoa Tabbouleh *

Recipe Source:  http://newhope360.com/recipes/lemony-quinoa-tabbouleh
Cook Time:  20 minutes
Serves:  4

Quinoa stands in for traditional bulgur in this gluten-free grain salad.  Like the original, it’s packed with parsley, which detoxes the kidneys and prevents water retention.  The light, lemony dressing loosens mucus and draws toxins from the liver.

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup quinoa (well rinsed and drained)
1.5 cups water
3/4 cup parsley (finely chopped)
4 scallions (thinly sliced crosswise)
1 cup grape tomatoes or cherry tomatoes (halved)
2 tablespoons fresh mint (minced)
1/2 lemon juiced (about 2 tablespoons)
1 large clove garlic (pressed)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Cayenne pepper (to taste)

PREPARATION:

Combine quinoa and water in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and cook on medium-low for 20 minutes, or until all water is absorbed and quinoa is fluffy.  Transfer to a plate to cool.

Combine parsley, scallions, tomatoes, and mint in a medium bowl; stir in cooled quinoa.

In a small bowl, whisk together lemon juice and garlic.  Whisk in olive oil and season to taste with cayenne pepper and sea salt.  Pour dressing over quinoa mixture and toss well.

Serve immediately, or refrigerate for 1–2 hours and serve chilled.

Nutritional Info (per serving):
237 cal, 9g fat (6g mono, 2g poly, 1g sat), 0mg chol, 7g protein, 32g carb, 5g fiber, 13mg sodium

* Pineapple Smoothie *

Recipe Source:  http://www.vibrantlivingmagazine.com/2012/03/01/pineapple-smoothie
Serves:  4

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1 cup fresh orange juice
1 small, or one-half large pineapple, peeled, quartered, and
chopped in small pieces, with four thin wedges reserved for garnish
8 ice cubes

PREPARATION:

Place ingredients into a blender and process to a smooth consistency. Pour into four chilled classes and serve, garnished with a pineapple slice.

* Cranberry Orange Relish with Fresh Ginger *

Cranberry Orange Relish is that old-fashioned family favorite, you know the one, where you grind cranberries with a whole orange and sweeten it with sugar? In my contemporary version, a little fresh ginger brightens the mixture. It’s especially icy-good when ground at the last minute with frozen cranberries.

 

Recipe Source:  http://www.kitchenparade.com/2002/11/cranberry-orange-relish-with-fresh.html
Hands-on Time:  10 minutes
Time to Table:  10 minutes
Yield:  Makes 2 cups

INGREDIENTS:

1  orange, skin on, stem removed, washed well
2  teaspoons freshly grated ginger
12  ounces frozen cranberries (rinsed under running water and picked through for soft or dried berries)
3/4  cup sugar (Splenda works great too)

PREPARATION:

Just before serving, drop the orange and ginger in a food processor and chop roughly.

Add frozen berries and sugar and pulse until chopped fine.  Serve immediately.

Nutrition Estimate (per 1/4 cup, made with Splenda/Sugar):
28/100 Calories
0g Tot Fat
0g Sat Fat
0mg Cholesterol
0mg Sodium
7/26g Carb
2g Fiber
3/22g Sugar
0g Protein
Weight Watchers Old Points 1/1.5
Weight Watchers PointsPlus 1/3

* Key Lime Pound Cake with Key Lime Glaze *

Recipe Source:  Southern Living
Yield:  Makes 12 servings
Preparation Time:  2 hours, 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup shortening
3 cups sugar
6 large eggs
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon lime zest
1/4 cup fresh Key lime juice

PREPARATION:

1.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Beat butter and shortening at medium speed with a heavy-duty electric stand mixer until creamy.  Gradually add sugar, beating at medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition.

2.  Stir together flour, baking powder, and salt.  Add to butter mixture alternately with milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.  Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition.  Stir in vanilla, lime zest, and lime juice.  Pour batter into a greased and floured 10-inch (12-cup) tube pan.

3.  Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 15-20 minutes or until a long wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pan on wire rack 10 to 15 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack.

4.  Prepare Key Lime Glaze, and immediately brush over top and sides of cake.  Cool completely (about 1 hour).

KEY LIME GLAZE

INGREDIENTS:

1 cup powdered sugar
2 tablespoons fresh Key Lime juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

PREPARATION:

Whisk together powdered sugar, fresh Key lime juice, and vanilla until smooth. Use immediately.

Additional Source Info:
Kathleen Blackman, Ponce Inlet, Florida, Southern Living
MARCH 2011