Monday, January 4, 2010

Healthy Recipe Ideas

So when you see my next few recipe posts, you will probably understand why I wanted to post some healthy recipes for the start of the new year. Actually, I have another reason. I am participating in Lori's 10 in 10 challenge for the new year. I normally don't do big resolutions for the new year, but this challenge inspired me and is helping me keep in line with some of my 101 goals as well. I am hoping to come up with some healthy recipes, exercise even more than I have been lately, and generally have a healthy approach to this new decade. I know some people out in the world are just getting started with these goals so I wanted to post some of my favorite recipes to help you out!!

For me, the key ingredient in a healthy dish is that it has to be hearty. If the dish makes me feel full, I won't crave the bad stuff later in the day. Here are a few that are healthy and won't have you craving the unhealthy things after you eat them:

Italian wedding soup: I could hardly believe that this Ina Garten recipe was not only healthy, but so fulfilling. Subbing chicken and turkey in for the meatballs and baking them lightens them up, but it sure doesn't make them skimp on flavor. For an even better twist, use a bit less pasta and make the pasta you use, whole wheat and load up on those vegetables that are called for in the recipe. You'll be full in no time.

Italian Wedding Soup

Boiled lemon was something new for me when trying this salad, but it was so worth it for this Saffron Chicken with Boiled Lemon and Green Beans.

Saffron Chicken, Boiled Lemon and Green Bean Salad

I'm not a vegetarian, but for two years I only ate vegetables and fish and I still enjoy many vegetarian and vegan meals. Here are some favorites:

Carrot, Fennel and Orange Soup is great, plus it uses local favorites for the winter. If you're in a climate like southern California where it's currently warm and sunny, it's very refreshing and won't make you feel like you need to run twenty laps after you consume it.

Carrot Fennel and Orange Soup

I love combining vegetables with fruits and making them into a salad and serving with some healthy grains. This cherry and asparagus salad is a perfect spring time treat:

Wheatberry Salad with Cherries and Roasted Asparagus

Sometimes I just go to the farmers market and pick up whatever inspires me. I loved making this Greek-inspired salad with spelt berries. So summery and fresh.

Greek-ish Salad with Spelt Berries

Much of my cooking is definitely inspired by the seasons. For those living in the colder climates where fresh vegetables are sparse, winter squash should be readily available and stuffing it with sausage makes a warm and satisfying meal.

From Dishing Up Delights

My first meatball making experience was filling and so amazing. I am kind of craving this again, like right now.

From Dishing Up Delights

Root vegetables are so in season right now! If you're not tired of them, try them in a simple and amazing quinoa salad.

From Dishing Up Delights

Just because you're eating healthy does not mean you have to skimp on desserts. Check out these gorgeous figs with ricotta. Or how about some homemade yogurt sorbet to rival Pinkberry? Treats like these won't have you reaching for a Snickers bar if you have a sweet tooth.

From Dishing Up Delights

From Dishing Up Delights

With these recipes, eating healthy is definitely easy. I hope everyone's new year is off to a wonderful start!

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Maria said...

Great healthy recipes! So glad you are doing the challenge too!

Kelly said...

Sounds like a great challenge. I might look into it as I could use a jumpstart into being healthier as well.

Erica said...

Good luck with the challenge girl! So many beautiful dishes. I have to try that carrot soup!

Tia said...

i adore your photographs! the italian wedding soup looks particularly yummy, but they actually are all just superb!

Diana said...

Did someone say... quinoa? ;)

Best of luck with the challenge - I know you'll do great! And if you need any more quinoa recipe ideas...

Gaby said...

it all looks fantastic! I would eat everyone of those foods!!

dinner date asap!

Jenn said...

Great recipes. I know you'll do great with the challenge. This is the year of good things.

Mary Bergfeld said...

Your recipes are wonderful. Good luck with the challenge and Happy New Year. I hope 2010 brings you health, happiness and prosperity.

The Cooking Photographer said...

Esi, you make health food look like the most wonderful substance in the world. I want to eat all healthy now darn you!

I think I'll make that soup tomorrow!


Sonja @ ActiveFoodie said...

What great recipes! Can't wait to see what other fabulous ideas you have up your sleeve!

LetMeEatCake Eat With Me! said...

all of those recipes look fantastic! i love italian wedding soup... if this is heathy i'm all for it, but I don't know if anything can really keep me away from all the bad stuff later in the day ;)

The Cooking Photographer said...

Hmm I'm trying to decide if I should make the soup or your pho from a couple months ago. Tough choice!

Sharon said...

Definitely going to try the Italian Wedding soup! Great roundup of beautiful & healthy dishes.

Sippity Sup said...

Wow have fun with this challenge and if I have not said it already Happy New Year. GREG

Thistlemoon said...

Those are some seriously delicious looking dishes! Love the stuffed squash and meatballs - those figs look incredible too! Glad to be doing this challenge with you!

The Duo Dishes said...

G'luck to all of us as we embark on better eating!

Simones Kitchen said...

What a great combo of dishes! One of my resolutions this year is to eat healthy (and to lose weight in the process hopefully) and exercise more so this is perfect!