Monday, July 27, 2009

Striped Delight

If you've learned anything about me from all of this, it is that I love chocolate almost as much as my future husband. Some days, it seems a tie. Kidding ... sort of ... yeah.

I found this in Kraft's Food and Family magazine last summer and made it for a barbecue at the FMIL's. Don't neglect the last refrigeration/freezer step like I did. It won't firm up as it should if not given it's proper 4 hours and some time in the freezer. Your stripes will go more into a plaid if not frozen. In other words, read the directions beforehand so you're not slamming it together and running out the door on the way to a barbecue at your FMIL's house. It will be tasty, but not pretty.

Striped Delight

35 OREO Cookies
6 Tbsp. butter, melted
1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp. cold milk
1 tub (12 oz.) COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed, divided
3-1/4 cups cold milk
2 pkg. (3.9 oz. each) JELL-O Chocolate Instant Pudding

    PROCESS cookies in food processor until fine crumbs form. Transfer to medium bowl; mix in butter. Press onto bottom of 13x9-inch dish. Refrigerate until ready to use. WHISK cream cheese, sugar and 2 Tbsp. milk in medium bowl until blended. Stir in 1-1/4 cups COOL WHIP; spread over crust.BEAT pudding mixes and 3-1/4 cups milk with whisk 2 min.; pour over cream cheese layer. Let stand 5 min. or until thickened; cover with remaining COOL WHIP. Refrigerate 4 hours. Place dessert in freezer about 1 hour before cutting into squares to serve. Adapted from Kraft Food and Family
    I forgot to freeze it before serving, so cutting it was a disaster.  It was not an "eat with your eyes" dish, not by a long shot.  It was a big hit, in spite of being messy and fug.  I did not tweak it to make it lighter, but I think it would be really easy to do so next time.  Enjoy!

    Thursday, July 23, 2009

    Skinny Comfort Food: Baked Mac and Cheese

    I love me some macaroni and cheese, but it's not exactly conducive to dress fittings and bikini season. This recipe has become my go-to staple when I need a carby fix but don't want the guilt. I make a huge tray of it every couple of weeks and freeze portions for an easy peasy grab-n-go lunch for work.

    Renovated Macaroni and Cheese
    12 oz uncooked macaroni, elbow-type
    1/2 cup(s) fat-free sour cream
    12 oz fat-free evaporated milk
    8 oz low-fat cheddar or colby cheese
    1 tbsp Dijon mustard
    1/4 tsp table salt
    1/4 tsp black pepper
    1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
    2 tbsp dried bread crumbs
    2 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese

      Preheat oven to 350ºF.  Cook pasta according to package directions without added fat or salt; drain and transfer to a large bowl. While pasta is still hot, stir in sour cream; set aside.Heat milk in a small saucepan over medium heat until tiny bubbles appear just around the edges (known as scalding). Reduce heat to low, add cheese and simmer until cheese melts, stirring constantly with a wire whisk, about 2 minutes; remove from heat and stir in mustard, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Add cheese mixture to pasta; mix well. Transfer to a 4-quart casserole dish.  Combine bread crumbs and Parmesan cheese; sprinkle over pasta.  Bake until top is golden, about 30 minutes. Yields about 1 cup per serving. Adapted from Weight Watchers

      I typically add a little more nutmeg and every once in awhile I add a couple of chicken breasts. I am notoriously bad about not eating enough protein, so the added points are totally worth it.  This also freezes really well.  I usually have a handful of small tupperware containers of this in my freezer for grab-and-go lunches.  So easy!