Easy Waffle Apple Pie

I wanted to make an apple pie dish that was easy and somewhat healthy for dessert the other night. I had a bunch of waffles in the freezer and a bowl full of apples, so I thought I’d get creative and invent something new. I made a basic apple pie filling, using Amaretto to glaze the apples, and used a waffle as a crust substitution. I also wanted a cream based topping, so I grabbed some plain, fat free Greek yogurt and just added honey, a little bit of sugar, and some vanilla extract to it.

Overall, this dish turned out amazing. And the best part was that it was super easy and low fat.

waffle apple pie

Ingredients:

Apple Pie Filling

  • 2 waffles (any kind or brand, I used whole wheat Eggo waffles)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 large splash of Amaretto

Yogurt Topping

  • 1 cup Greek yogurt (I used fat free)
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon sugar (or honey)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Melt the butter in a pan at medium high heat, while you thinly slice the apples. Once the butter has melted, throw the apples in the pan with the butter, and sprinkle with cinnamon and nutmeg. Stir all the ingredients, then let the apples cook for a few minutes, continuing to stir so that the apples don’t burn. You can turn down the heat a bit if you think it’s too high, but you want to make sure that it’s hot enough so that the apples cook properly, and get soft and tender.

Now would be a good time to heat up your waffles.

After a few minutes, add the sugar to the apple mixture and stir until it all melts. Once the sugar has melted, add the Amaretto to the pan and keep on stirring until you see the apples starting to glaze a bit, no more than 1 minute. Remove the pan from the burner and set aside.

Take the Greek yogurt and sweeten it with the honey and sugar, then mix in the vanilla extract. Instead of using plain Greek yogurt, you can buy the sweetened, vanilla kind if you wish. Or you don’t have to sweeten the yogurt at all if you don’t want to.

Take the waffles and place them on a plate. Top each waffle with the apple mixture then scoop some of the Greek yogurt on top.

Enjoy!

Serves: 2

 

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Pasta with Bacon, Mushroom, and Shallot Cream Sauce

This is one of those dishes that I like to refer to as a very, very “naughty” dish. This is not healthy by any means, but yet, is so rich and satisfying. Who cares if you feel terribly guilty and put on a few pounds afterwords. Personally, I like to live life to the fullest. And when I say “fullest”, I mean “fullest”, according to my belly. 🙂

I can’t tell you how much I enjoy making this sauce. The combination of the mushrooms, bacon, shallots, cream, and parmesan, are absolutely divine. I like to use egg noodles when making this dish, only because it soaks up the sauce a little bit better than regular pasta. But honestly, you can use whatever pasta you wish, and it will still turn out amazing.

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 5 slices thick cut bacon, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 package (10 ounces) crimini or wild mushrooms (I used half crimini and half shitake mushrooms)
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup half and half
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped (reserve a bit for topping)
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese (reserve a bit for topping)
  • Fresh ground pepper and salt
  • 1 pound pasta (I used thick egg noodles, but angel hair or spaghetti would work well too)

Directions:

First, chop up and measure all of your ingredients.

In a large pan, heat olive oil over medium high heat and add the bacon. Once bacon is cooked until light, golden brown (not crisp), remove from pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. Leave oil and grease in pan (you can remove a little if you wish).

Meanwhile, boil a pot of water to prepare for the pasta.

Add mushrooms, garlic, butter, and shallots to pan and cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally. Pour in wine and stir. Cook for another 3-4 minutes, until liquid is reduced by half.

Add the pasta to the pot of  boiling water.

Reduce heat to medium low and add the half and half and cream. Allow the sauce to bubble and thicken, stirring frequently for a couple minutes. Then add the parmesan cheese and stir until melted. Remove from heat. The sauce should look like this.

Toss half of the sauce mixture into the pasta. Serve pasta in individual bowls and top with more sauce, parmesan, and parsley.

Serves: 4-6

BLT Salad with Garlic, Parmesan Croutons and Honey Mustard Dressing

I love BLT sandwiches and I love salads. What a delightful pair when you combine the two. I add home-made croutons to this recipe (which are delicious), so it resembles more of the original, BLT sandwich. I also enjoy topping this salad with chunks of avocado and a honey mustard dressing.

I don’t know about you, but I hate adding mayonnaise to my salad dressings, which is why I like to use Greek yogurt as a substitute. It’s way healthier and surprisingly, actually tastes quite good when mixed with other ingredients. Feel free to slather on the mayo if you wish, but I promise you, the Greek yogurt won’t disappoint you.

BLT Salad with Garlic, Parmesan Croutons and Honey Mustard Dressing

Ingredients:

BLT Salad

  • 1 head romain lettuce, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup red onion, chopped (optional)
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar plum or grape tomatoes, sliced
  • 4 slices bacon

Dressing

  • 1 tablespoon honey (if you want your dressing sweeter- add another 1/2 tablespoon)
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt (I used fat free)
  • 1 tablespoon mustard (I used Sierra Nevada Honey Spice Mustard- My Fav!)
  • 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 2-3 pinches cayenne pepper for spice

Croutons

  • 4 cups bread, cubed (I used a multi-grain sourdough)
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • fresh cracked black pepper and kosher salt for seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated parmesan cheese

Directions:

First, get started on the croutons. Preheat oven to 250 degrees. In a small pan sauté the garlic, butter, and olive oil for about 2 minutes over medium high heat, until the garlic turns a golden brown. Remove from heat.

Place the bread in a large bowl and pour the garlic mixture evenly all over, then toss to coat. Sprinkle the parmesan, black pepper, and kosher salt over the bread as well, then toss again.

Spread croutons evenly onto a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes, or until croutons are crisp and golden. When they are done, they will look like this. Yum! Try not to eat them all prior to making the salad. I am guilty of doing this!

Next, start cooking the bacon in a pan over medium high heat until desired doneness. While the bacon is cooking, chop up the lettuce, tomatoes, and onion, then place into a large bowl. When the bacon is done cooking, let cool on a plate with a paper towel. Once cool, slice into chunks then pour into the bowl and toss with the other ingredients. Slice the avocado into small chunks and set aside.

Make the dressing by combining all of the ingredients and mixing well. There will be more than enough dressing, so don’t feel obligated to use it all.

Serve the salad on separate plates, then top with avocado, croutons, and drizzle with dressing.

Serves: 2-4

Garlic, Tomato, and Basil Shrimp with a White Wine, Butter Sauce

I absolutely love this dish. It’s pretty simple to make and the sauce turns out very rich and flavorful. And what’s so great about making a delicious sauce with wine, is that you’re compelled to drink the wine as you’re making the dish. Doesn’t that sound like fun?

I like to add a little butter to make the sauce slightly creamy in texture and red pepper flakes to give it a little kick.

I happened to serve this dish over a bed of angel hair pasta this evening. You can totally make this dish without the pasta, which is normally what I do since I don’t eat very many carbs for dinner. But since  how I have so many “carb loving” friends out there, this one’s just for you.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • a few pinches of red pepper flakes (or more if you want it spicier)
  • 3/4 cup white wine (I used a pinot grigio, which just so happens to be my favorite white wine)
  • 1/4 cup basil, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, halved
  • Salt and fresh cracked pepper

Directions:

Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium high heat. Saute the shrimp for about 2-3 minutes on each side, or until cooked through.

Transfer the shrimp to a bowl with a slotted spoon, while keeping the remaining juices in the pan.

Add the garlic and the red pepper flakes to the pan and sauté for 30 seconds over medium high heat. Then add the white wine to the pan and cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.

Add the butter and let it melt, then add the basil and tomatoes and the cooked shrimp. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for another minute then remove from heat.

Serve by itself or with pasta.

Serves: 4 with pasta or 2 without pasta

Breakfast Potatoes with Proscuitto, Mortadella, Rosemary, and Shaved Parmesan

I had a bunch of leftover deli meat in the refrigerator this weekend that I wanted to use, so I decided to chop it up and throw it into my Sunday morning breakfast potatoes along with some fresh herbs and arugula. This dish was so simple to make and turned out absolutely delicious. You can use any kind of small potato for this recipe and any kind of deli meat that you choose. I used a red, gold, and purple potato medley that I had picked up from Trader Joes along with some prosciutto and mortadella that I had picked up from the Whole Foods deli.

I also LOVE serving breakfast potatoes with eggs over easy or medium. It really compliments the dish.

Breakfast Potatoes with Proscuitto, Mortadella, Rosemary, and Shaved Parmesan

Ingredients:

  • 6-8 small potatoes, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1/2 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large handful arugula, chopped
  • 2 sprigs rosemary, chopped
  • 3 slices mortadella, chopped
  • 4 slices proscuitto, chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Shaved parmesan cheese
  • White truffle oil (optional)
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked pepper
Directions:
 
Chop up the potatoes, onions, arugula, rosemary, mortadella, and proscuitto.

Add the potatoes and cook for about 10 minutes, or until they start to slightly brown. Then add the onions and cook for about 3-4 minutes, or until they start to brown. Season with salt (very little because the proscuitto is salty), pepper, and drizzle with truffle oil. Add the arugula and rosemary, cook for 30 seconds, then remove from heat. Add the proscuitto and mortadella and mix well.

Top with parmesan cheese.

Serves: 2

Seared Panko Breaded Cod with a Lemon and Chive Butter Sauce

This recipe is so delicious that I made it twice this weekend; once with my friend Taylor and once for my parents. They both loved it! I highly recommend getting fresh cod from either Whole Foods or some other market that sells good quality fish. I also suggest using an organic peanut oil, which will really make a difference in the overall taste and presentation. The key to getting a perfect, golden brown crust, is by using a good frying oil. Peanut oil just happens to be my favorite. It’s great for frying because it doesn’t burn at high temperatures and it’s also heart-healthy (just like olive oil) because it’s high in monounsaturated fats. Make sure that you use an unsalted butter too and a dry white wine. This will have a huge effect on the taste and consistency of the sauce.

You can use this sauce on other fish as well (salmon, tilapia, halibut, sole). I served this dish with roasted potates and asparagus. Mashed potatoes or rice would work well too.

Seared Panko Breaded Cod with a Lemon and Chive Butter Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 4 (6 ounce) cod fillets
  • Panko bread crumbs (I like the Whole Foods brand)
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons peanut oil (I prefer organic)
  • 1/2 lemon, squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
  • 2 cups dry white wine (I used a pinot grigio)
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 3 garlic gloves, pealed and smashed
  • 3 tablespoons chopped chives
  • Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper

Directions:

Heat oven to 350 degrees.

In a saucepan add the wine, shallot, garlic, and thyme and cook on a medium high heat for about 10 to 15 minutes. You want the wine to reduce to about half a cup.

Meanwhile, heat the peanut oil in a pan over medium high heat. Season the cod with salt and pepper. Whip the two eggs in a bowl, then dip each piece of fish into the egg mixture.

*Note: If your cod pieces are too large, you can cut them in half  and make more servings. They won’t take as long to cook either.

Roll around the fish in the breadcrumbs to get an even coating.

Place the breaded fish into the pan with the peanut oil. Fry for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until crust is golden brown. Then place all of the pieces of fish into a baking dish and put in the oven for 3-5 minutes, or until fish is cooked through.

At this point, your wine reduction should almost be done. Once there’s about 1/3 cup of wine reduction in the pot, strain the mixture.

Save the wine and discard the garlic, shallots, and thyme. Pour the wine back into the pot and put back on medium high heat. Add the lemon juice and the whipping cream. Whisk the mixture for about 2 minutes then add the butter. Continue to whisk for another 2 minutes, or until the sauce starts to get thicker. Add the chives, then remove from heat. The sauce will thicken as you let it cool.

Remove the fish from the oven and pour a couple teaspoons of the lemon and chive butter sauce over the top of the fish.

Serves: 4

Arugula Salad with Prosciutto Wrapped Dates, Stuffed with Goat Cheese and Rosemary

I absolutely love prosciutto wrapped dates stuffed with goat cheese. It serves as a tasty appetizer in and of itself, but is also a great way to spice up a salad. I like to use a plain goat cheese, then stuff fresh rosemary into the goat cheese, to infuse it with flavor during the baking process. I also like to drizzle a honey, balsamic vinaigrette over the stuffed figs and arugula. It compliments all of the flavors really well.

Arugula Salad with Prosciutto Wrapped Dates, Stuffed with Goat Cheese and Rosemary

Ingredients:

  • 1 bag of arugula
  • 1/3 cup soft goat cheese
  • 16 Medjool dates
  • 8 thin slices prosciutto, halved lengthwise
  • 3 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar

Directions:

Preheat oven to 35o degrees.

Remove the pits from the dates by slicing off the ends and gently squeezing out the pits. Wrap each date with a slice of prosciutto, then stuff the dates with the goat cheese. I like to use the thick end of a chopstick to stuff the dates.

Cut the sprigs of rosemary into 16 pieces. Insert the small herb sticks into each stuffed date, then gently place the dates, standing up, in a small ramekin or baking dish. Sprinkle with fresh black pepper.

Put the ramekin into the oven for about 15 minutes, just to warm the dates and slightly crispen the prosciutto. While the stuffed dates are in the oven, mix the honey, olive oil, balsamic vinegar really well. Season with fresh, cracked pepper.

Remove the ramekin from the oven, then remove and discard all of the rosemary pieces. Lay the prosciutto wrapped dates over a bed of arugula. Then drizzle with the honey balsamic vinaigrette.

Serves: 4