Let’s Celebrate the 4th!

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Are you considering hosting either a brunch or BBQ for the 4ht of July?  Are you looking for a healthier menu? If you are, I have you covered!

I love brunch and luckily there are so many ways to lighten up your menu!

Brunch Menu

  • Sausage and Egg Muffin– 12 servings (1 muffin/ serving)
    • 1 Cup, Shredded Potato
    • 3 egg, Egg Whites
    • 3 large, Egg
    • 0.25 cup, 2% Milk
    • 0.25 cup, Shredded Mexican Cheese
    • 3.00 links, Johnsonville Turkey Sausage
    • 0.50 oz, Red Bell Pepper
    • 0.25 cup, Mushrooms
    • Bake the shredded potato in a muffin pan at 425 Degrees for 15 mins or till crisp edge, the add all the veggies and diced sausage on top. Then add the mix of eggs, egg whites, milk, cheese, salt and pepper to taste. I also added some fresh basil. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 mins of until egg is done.
    • Macros: 76 cal/ 3g F/ 4g C/ 5g P
  • Chicken and Protein Waffles (birch benders protein pancake mix, per instructions on package) – For a quick cheat on the chicken I purchased Chic-Fil-A chicken strips and use 2 chicken strips.  I top it with 1/4 cup of sugar free syrup.
    • Macros: 415 cal/ 10g F/ 45g C/ 30g P

And/Or

  • Red, White and Blue Protein Waffles with Turkey Sausage- I follow the instructions on Birch Benders Protein pancake mix for waffles and toss and few blueberries into the mix. Serve with strawberries on top, sugar free syrup and Johnsonville Turkey Sausage, 3 links.
    • Macros: 341 cal/ 9g F/ 42g C/ 28 g P
  • Red, White and Blue Yogurt- 1/4 c blueberries
    • 1/4 c strawberries
    • 1/2 c fat free greek yogurt
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • Macros: 192 cal/ 1 g F/ 40g C/ 13g P 
  • Pasta Salad: 11 servings (1 cup per serving)
    • 1 Bell Pepper, Green Bell Pepper
    • 2 Tbs, Onion Green Whole
    • 1 tbsp, Basil, fresh
    • 1 g, Pepper
    • 1 Tablespoons, Salt
    • 1 bunch, Broccoli, steamed
    • 0.25 container (60 tomatoes ea.), One Single Cherry Tomato
    • 1 container (32 tbsp ea.), Free Zesty Italian (Fat Free Dressing)
    • 1 container (5 3/10 cup dries ea.), Whole Grain Pasta Rotini
    • Boil pasta per box instructions and let noodles cool. Then mix all the above in a large bowl and chill for at least an hour before serving.
    • Macros: 180cal/ 1g F/ 35g C/ 6g P
  • Caprese Bites: 2 servings (4 each)
    • 8 cherry tomatoes
    • 1 low fat mozzarella stick
    • 8 fresh basil leaves
    • 1tbsp olive oil and balsamic vinegar mix (I use a dipping oil mix with spices)
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 11g F/6g C/ 4g P
  •  Fresh Fruit- Watermelon is always a good choice and I added sprigs of mint leaves for presentation . 1 cup of watermelon
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 0g F/ 22g C/ 2g P

BBQ/Cookout Menu

Planning a BBQ ?! I have the best burger recipe for you! There is a key special ingredient, Home Grind that perhaps myself or Kevin can introduce you! Home Grind is an amazing blend of peppers to add a little heat to your burger.

  • Venison Burger: 7 servings- 1 burger per serving: Video for prep below
    • 1 lb(s), Venison (sub lean ground beef/turkey burger-macros are for venison)
    • 1 large, Egg
    • 0.50 cup, Oats
    • 6 g, Pepper
    • 1 tbsp(s), Garlic, raw
    • 1.50 tsp, Original Flavor Salt Free Seasoning Blend
    • 1 tsp(s), Spices, garlic powder
    • 2 Tsp, Seasoning Chupacabra
    • 1 pinch of Home Grind
    • Macros: 114 cal/ 5g F/ 5g C/ 13g P

Utilize the brunch menu and serve with the pasta salad, caprese bites and watermelon. Sun tea is always a good choice to add!

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For dessert I recommend Red, White and Blue angle food cake.

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  • Red, White and Blue Angel Food Cake: 1 serving
    • 1 Slice, Angel Food Cake
    • 0.25 cup, halves, Strawberries, raw
    • 0.25 cup, Blueberries
    • 2 TBSP , Fat-free Whipped Cream –
    • Macros: 181 cal/ 0g F/ 41g C/ 3g P

I hope you enjoy celebrating the holiday with these lighter menu items! Have a safe and Happy 4th of July!

XOXO,

Cecee

Friendsgiving 

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The holidays are quickly approaching and to me it always feels like after Halloween everyone skips straight to Christmas.  My favorite holiday is Thanksgiving and I do not start celebrating or decorating for Christmas until Thanksgiving has passed. I have always loved Thanksgiving as it is a time to not only enjoy wonderful food, but a time to look around and be truly thankful for the blessings and people in my life.

As I have gotten older and moved around I have come to love my friends as family and count them as a blessing. For the past 3 years I have hosted a Friendsgiving and though some of the faces around the table have changed the gratitude I have remains the same.

I begin by planning my tablescape. I always do a formal china setting with the cranberry and gold china with cloth napkins to match. The napkins, napkin rings, placemats and tablecloths come from TJ Maxx. Each year my centerpieces vary from fresh cuts or pumpkins and gourds. This year I went with candles and fresh flowers from Trader Joe’s as they always have the best floral selection.

Each year I provide the main course and appetizers while my guest each provide a side item or dessert. I give assignments for type of items to bring as I know I want a salad, vegetable, dessert, bread and drinks to arrive. In hosting and asking people to bring a dish if you do not provide more specific direction you could end up with 5 desserts versus the variety you want!

Appetizer table included Oyster Rockefeller , charcuterie board with supplies from Trader Joe’s, and apple brie bits.

If you are looking for great seafood around Indianapolis I recommend Caplinger’s as that is where I purchase my seafood.

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Charcuterie included crackers, salami, herbed goat cheese, 3 pack of cheese from Trader Joe’s (can’t remember the types), olives, pickles, jam, honey, peanuts, cashews and chocolate covered expresso beans.

Apple and Brie bites- Crostini from Fresh Thyme with apple butter spread on top then add thinly sliced apples and cubes of brie and bake until brie melts. Then add another thinly sliced apple on top with crushed pecans and drizzle honey over, then serve.

For the main course my assistants, Christy and Jordan helped me make lasagna, tuscan shrimp,  pasta and mussels in a white wine garlic sauce.

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Sharing a meal and laughs with people I love brings so much joy to me. I am beyond grateful for the many friendships that I have. Not all of those friendships were around the table this year, but the love and support I feel from my friends mean more than I could ever express.

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Enjoy the holiday season, count your blessings and gather with a grateful heart!

XOXO,

Cecee