Easy Egg Cups

I love that these healthy egg muffin cups can be made in advance. These muffin cups have less than 50 calories per muffin and are packed with vegetables, so eat up and serve with some toast, your morning coffee, yogurt, etc! showmetheyummy.com #breakfast #healthy #togo #easyrecipes #vegetarian

(Picture Courtesy of showmetheyummy.com)

If there is one food that I eat more than anything else, it’s eggs.  I absolutely love eggs and always have.  Cooked, baked, hard boiled, soft boiled, fried…I love them all. Fortunately, eggs are fully acceptable as part of the CKD diet but because my cholesterol is a little on the high side (I’m a mess, I know), I try to stick with more eggs whites than yolks.

Around Passover (I’m Jewish), I was trying to find a breakfast dish that would be really fast in the morning and didn’t require any kind of bread, grain, or anything with that dreaded “Accepted for Passover” label (which basically meant that it had a lot of other stuff in it and wasn’t very tasty). So I started to look online to find ideas for how I could make eggs fast and portable and stumbled upon this recipe.  Not only was it super easy, but I could add whatever ingredients I wanted to make it work for me and my diet.  So I give you the easiest recipe in the world, egg muffin cups.

Healthy Egg Muffin Cups

Original Recipe Found HERE.

Revised Recipe Below: Me 🙂 Jackie

Prep Time: 10 Minutes
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Total Time: 25 Minutes
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 cup red pepper measured after chopping
  • 1 cup green pepper measured after chopping
  • 1 cup yellow onion measured after chopping
  • 1 cups steamed broccoli – roughly chopped measured/packed before chopping (Note: I buy this frozen but make sure there’s no added salt)
  • 1 cup mushrooms measured before chopping
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • 4 whole eggs
  • 4 egg whites (Note: If you’re like me, you can add more whites than this and take away from the whole eggs – the goal is just to have 8 total between whites and whole)
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper optional
  • Hot sauce optional for drizzling on top

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Grease a standard non stick 12-slot muffin pan with cooking spray and set aside.
  3. Heat a large non stick skillet over medium heat.
  4. Once hot, add in oil, red pepper, green pepper, and onion.
  5. Saute 5-7 minutes, or until peppers are tender.
  6. Add in broccoli and mushrooms and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  7. In the last 30 seconds, add in minced garlic.
  8. Remove from heat.
  9. Crack eggs/egg whites into a large 4 cup measuring cup and whisk together.
  10. Stir in cooked veggies. If adding cayenne, add the pinch to the mixture and stir together.
  11. Pour the egg/veggie mixture evenly into the prepared muffin pan.
  12. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the tops are firm to the touch and eggs are cooked.
  13. Cool slightly and serve immediately!
  14. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for about 4 days.
  15. These may also be frozen.
  16. To reheat, pop them in the microwave until warm.

My Redheaded Burger Fantasy

I have a slight obsession with redheaded men. Not really because I’m attracted to them, but more because I think they’re going extinct.  I mean seriously, how many natural red-haired men are there (besides Price Harry, Ed Sheeran, Ron Howard, Seth Green, and maybe an odd TV star like Damian Lewis)?  I am on the hunt to find more and as a side note, please feel free to comment if you can think of more!  I need to add to my list.

That aside, I also love Bobby Flay. Not just because he’s a redheaded man but because I think he’s charismatic, funny (have you heard him on Z100?) and I love all of his restaurants.  Living in New York, Bobby Flay is a staple here and since I have an affinity of all things spicy, his restaurants are always on my list. I also watch all of his shows on the Food Network to get inspiration.

Here he is making my favorite burger:

bobby

Ahh, my favorite burger…it’s called the Crunchburger, which he sells at Bobby’s Burger Palace.  Upon eating this burger for the first time, I had an epiphany – a little crunch makes any dish, particularly burgers, so much better.  When I began with my CKD diet, I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to eat this burger, since A.) it had cheese on it and B.) the best part of the burger was the chips.  But alas, after much experimentation, I’ve found a perfect substitute that makes it CKD friendly.  At that, I give you my favorite redheaded burger with a CKD spin.

The Crunchburger

Original Recipe Found HERE (courtesy of the incomparable Bobby Flay)

Revised Recipe: ME 🙂 Jackie

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds lean ground meat chuck (85 percent lean) or ground turkey (90 percent lean)
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 4 white hamburger buns, split; toasted, if desired (Tip: Buns are better toasted 🙂 )
  • 4 slices beefsteak tomato (optional)
  • 4 leaves romaine lettuce (optional)
  • 4 slices red onion (optional)
  • Horseradish Mustard Mayonnaise, recipe follows (optional)*
  • 4 handfuls of salt-free corn tortilla chips (Note: I am obsessed with Garden of Eatin’ blue corn chips, which you can find here. It’s just corn and oil.)
  • Optional for CKD Diets: If you want cheese on your burgers, you can buy rice cheese or Daiya cheese slices; however, please make sure you read the labels. These cheeses do have additives (including phosphates) and salt, so use in moderation.)

Horseradish Mustard Mayonnaise:

  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons drained prepared horseradish
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of agave syrup or honey (optional – only if you want to tone down the spice of the horseradish)

Directions

 

Divide the meat into 4 equal portions (about 6 ounces each). Form each portion loosely into a 3/4-inch-thick burger and make a deep depression in the center with your thumb. Season both sides of each burger with pepper.

Heat the oil in the pan or griddle over high heat until the oil begins to shimmer. Cook the burgers until golden brown and slightly charred on the first side, about 3 minutes for beef and 5 minutes for turkey. Flip over the burgers. Cook beef burgers until golden brown and slightly charred on the second side, 4 minutes for medium rare or until cooked to desired degree of doneness. Cook turkey burgers until cooked throughout, about 5 minutes on the second side.

If using cheese, add to the tops of the burgers during the last minute of cooking and top with a basting cover, close the grill cover, or tent the burgers with aluminum foil to melt the cheese.

Place the burgers on the bun bottoms and, if desired, top with tomato, lettuce, onion, and a dollop of horseradish mustard mayonnaise. Pile on the corn chips, top with the bun tops, and serve immediately.

Horseradish Mustard Mayonnaise:

Whisk together the mayonnaise, mustard, and horseradish (and agave syrup or honey if desired) in a small bowl and season with pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes to allow the flavors to meld. The sauce can be prepared 1 day in advance and kept covered in the refrigerator.

*One note on this sauce: I absolutely LOVE this sauce and use it all the time. I put it on sandwiches, fish, and sometimes I make it into a dressing by adding oil.  If you are not a horseradish fan, you probably won’t use this, but I’ve found the addition of something sweet like the honey or agave syrup helps to balance out that strong flavor nicely.

Enjoy!

 

Faux Garlic Mashed Potatoes

One of the greatest loves of my life is potatoes.  I’ll take them in any shape and form – fried, shredded, mashed, waffled – you name it, I’ll eat it.  Unfortunately, potatoes are very high in potassium and are my no-no list. But I’ve found an alternative…cauliflower!

Image result for cauliflower mashed potatoes

(Picture is from foodnetwork.com)

Cauliflower is like the new kale.  It’s trendy and you see it everywhere, not necessarily as the original vegetable, but rather, cut up, shredded, diced, etc. It now takes the place of traditional carbs like rice or noodles. But it also works great in place of potatoes!

Now, if you haven’t had rice cauliflower or any of these other forms of cauliflower carbs, I will forewarn that it doesn’t exactly taste the same.  It does taste a bit like…well…cauliflower. But that’s not a bad thing and in face, after a few bites, I find it tasty in its own way.  And the good part is that it has the same consistency of a potato and when you add spices and other yummy ingredients, it no longer has the same cauliflower taste.

Here is a recipe for cauliflower mashed potatoes from the Food Network, which again, I’ve altered per the below instructions, to make it CKD-friendly. This is delicious, healthy, and an excellent side dish, even if you don’t have CKD.

Original Recipe here: Food Network “Mock” Garlic Mashed Potatoes

Revised Recipe Below: Me 🙂 Jackie

Ingredients

  • 1 medium head cauliflower
  • 1 tablespoon cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 tablespoon sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/8 teaspoon sodium-free chicken bullion cube
  • 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh or dry chives, for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons margarine

Directions

Set a stockpot of water to boil over high heat.

Clean and cut cauliflower into small pieces. Cook in boiling water for about 6 minutes, or until well done. Drain well; do not let cool and pat cooked cauliflower very dry between several layers of paper towels.

In a bowl with an immersion blender, or in a food processor, puree the hot cauliflower with the cream cheese, sour cream, garlic, chicken bullion, and pepper until almost smooth.

Garnish with chives, and serve hot with pats of margarine.

Note: My changes to this recipe were to essentially add more spice and make it smoother. I punched up the garlic an added some sour cream (and replaced margarine vs butter). If you don’t like it super garlicky, make sure you select a smaller-sized clove. Also, if you want to save time, feel free to buy the “riced” cauliflower but make sure to read the label to see if there are any additives (like salt)!

Enjoy!

Spicy Shrimpy Salsa

As you will see, I love salsa. I have a ton of salsa recipes because A.) they’re super easy B.) they’ve got a nice kick of spice and C.) I’m a fan of any type food where utensils aren’t required. Most salsas that you buy from a grocery story have a lot of salt or fruit/veggies that aren’t great for me, but after experimenting a bit, I realized that I can successfully make my own. So over the past 3 years, I probably have attempted to make over 20 varieties of salsa (I’m only posting the successes). Yes, I know – I’m salsa crazy.

This one in particular was inspired by the fact that I made a tortilla soup for dinner one night but needed something on the side.  I started to make a salsa to blend in with the Mexican theme but realized I could really use a protein. So instead of adding chicken or shrimp to the soup, I just put it into the salsa.  And the combination was AMAZING.

A note about shrimp: I love shrimp but they’re tricky for me because while they’re acceptable on the CKD diet, they are higher in sodium.  So when I use them, I try to use them sparingly.  This recipe is great because I can chop up a few shrimp and make a little go a long way.  Also, I highly recommend that if you’re going to cook shrimp, you buy the raw ones. They can be frozen or fresh, but they’re so much better when they’re not pre-cooked.  You can add whatever flavor you want and they cook to be much more tender.

Also, if you don’t like spice, you won’t like this recipe (or the rest of my salsas). That said, feel free to add as much or as little spice as you want – you can make this mild or super hot, but you need to be comfortable with a little heat.

Author: Me 🙂  Jackie

Prep Time: 20 Minutes

Cook Time: 20 Minutes

Total Time: 40 Minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Pound Raw (Fresh or Frozen) De-Veined Medium-Sized Shrimp
  • 1 Tablespoon Canola Oil
  • 1/2 Red Onion, diced finely
  • 2 Limes
  • 1 Tablespoon of Agave Syrup or Honey
  • 1-2 Jalapeños (If you don’t like spice, only use 1 and remove the seeds), finely diced
  • 1/3 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
  • Optional: 1/2 Fresh Avocado, Cut into Small Cubes (Note: If you have high potassium or your doctor recommends that you avoid potassium, please do not include this. I’m allowed to have some potassium in my diet and avocados are my potassium of choice.)

Directions:

  1. Make sure shrimp are thawed and cleaned prior to cooking.  Once they are ready, heat the canola oil in a pan over low heat.  Place the shrimp in.  Keep an eye on them as they cook very quickly.  After about 3-4 minutes, flip them to cook on the other side.
  2. While they are cooking, take one of the limes and zest it over the shrimp. Cut the lime and squeeze half of it over the shrimp.
  3. Allow it to cook all the way through so it’s a light pink throughout and there aren’t any clear parts. It should be a total of around 5-6 minutes.  Pull the shrimp off the pan and allow them to cool.
  4. While they’re cooling, chop all of your ingredients – the jalapeños, red onion, cilantro, and avocado. Place in a large bowl.
  5. Once the shrimp have cooled, remove the tails (throw them in the trash). Chop up the rest of the shrimp into bite-sized pieces.  Add this to the bowl.
  6. Squeeze the other half of the lime into the bowl, as well as the full remaining lime.  Add the agave syrup/honey.  Mix together.

Take a bite to assess the level of heat and if you need to add more or less.  If it’s too spicy, add more agave/honey. If it’s not spicy enough, add another jalapeño. This is a recipe where if it sits in the refrigerator for a few hours, the flavors all meld together and it gets better, so I also recommend trying it again later.

Enjoy this on its own as a dip or as a topping for a salad.  Or maybe on a corn tortilla. YUM!

Eggplant Poo-Poo Dip

When I come home from work at night, I just want to stuff myself with the first snack I see. So I started to think about what I could make myself at the beginning of the week that would work for my CKD diet. Dips are easy and eggplant is one of the vegetables that I can eat, so here is another creation of mine – the eggplant poo-poo dip.
I’m sure you’re wondering, “What’s with the name?” Well, I call this an eggplant poo-poo dip for 2 reasons:
  1. This dish is not the prettiest. The color, in particular, is not nice. It’s a light brown, grayish, slightly poo-y look.
  2. If you have any kind of digestive issues, eggplant is the perfect trick to cleanse your system 🙂
That said, this dip is absolutely AMAZING and I have to stop myself from eating the entire thing at once. Yes, it’s not the prettiest to serve at a group gathering and yes, I can’t eat the whole thing because it would do a serious number on my stomach, but it tastes so good and smooth – I love it. If you are a fan at all of eggplant, you will love this dip.
One note on this dip: I’ve learned that eggplant essentially takes on any flavor you want to add, so if you don’t like garlic, you will not like this recipe. Even though there are only 2 cloves, it’s very garlic-forward. If you prefer another spice, feel free to make a swap. I sometimes put a little cayenne pepper in there for an extra kick.
Prep Time: 35 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Ingredients:
  • 3 medium sized eggplants
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • pepper
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • Optional: Tablespoon of honey or agave syrup
Directions:
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Cut off the top of the eggplants and then slice them in half lengthwise (the long way). Lay them on a sheet pan with the skin-side down and brush them in canola oil. Then sprinkle pepper on top (Note: I also use Mrs. Dash Salt-Free Table Mix on the eggplant). Place them in the oven for 30 minutes.
  3. While the eggplant is cooking, grate the 2 cloves of garlic and place in a food processor. Add the cumin and another dash of pepper.
  4. Once the eggplant has finished roasting, allow it to cool.
  5. After it has cooled, scoop out the inside of the eggplant and put into the food processor. (Note: I like to take out some of the seeds while doing this, as I find it’s a lot easier on my stomach without them).
  6. Add the lemon juice and grind everything together in the food processor. Pulse it for about 30 seconds or until the eggplant is totally smooth and combined with the rest of the ingredients.
At this point, I usually taste it to see if I like it. If it’s too garlicky, feel free to add a little agave or honey. If it’s not garlicky enough, add more. But it should be perfectly smooth and delightfully delicious. You can feel free to eat this on its own – I usually dip some cucumbers or rice crackers into it – or add it to the top of chicken or fish. It’s so good, you’ll want to eat it with everything. Enjoy!