Ginger Steak and Broccoli Stir-Fry

ginger beef and broccoli stir-fry

Ginger Steak and Broccoli Stir-Fry 

2 tsp. Asian (dark) sesame oil

10 oz. lean sirloin steak, trimmed and cut into thin strips

1 Tbl. minced peeled fresh ginger

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 cups small broccoli florets

4 scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths

1 Tbl. reduced-sodium soy sauce

1/2 tsp. hot chili paste

Heat large deep skillet or wok over high heat until drop of water sizzles in pan.  Add steak and stir-fry until lightly browned, about 2 minutes.  Transfer to plate.

Add ginger and garlic to skillet and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add broccoli and scallions and stir-fry until just softened, about 2 minutes longer.

Return steak to skillet along with soy sauce and chili paste.  Stir-fry until beef is just cooked through, about 2 minutes longer.

Cook’s Note:

To easily cut the steak into thin strips, put it in the freezer for 30 minutes before slicing.

(Ginger Steak and Broccoli Stir-Fry was in “Weight Watchers: Cook it Fast”, August, 2014)


Teriyaki Chicken & Snow Pea Stir-Fry

Teriyaki Chicken and Snow Pea Stir FryTeriyaki Chicken & Snow Pea Stir-Fry

2 tsp. Asian (dark) sesame oil

1 lb. skinless boneless chicken breast, cut into thin strips

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 (1/2 inch) piece fresh ginger, peeled and minced

1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced

4 scallions, thinly sliced

1 (5 0z.) can sliced water chestnuts, drained

6 oz. snow peas, trimmed

1/4 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

1/4 cup teriyaki sauce

Pinch red pepper flakes

2 cups hot cooked brown rice

Heat large skillet or wok over medium-high heat until drop of water sizzles in pan.  Add oil and swirl to coat skillet.

Add chicken to skillet and stir-fry until browned and cooked through, about 5 minutes.  Using slotted spoon, transfer chicken to plate.

Add garlic and ginger to skillet and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  Add bell pepper, scallions and water chestnuts; stir-fry 2 minutes.  Add snow peas and stir-fry until bright green.  Add broth, teriyaki sauce and red pepper flakes; stir-fry until sauce is slightly reduced, about 1 minute longer.

Return chicken to skillet and stir-fry until heated through, about 1 minute.  Serve with brown rice.

Stir-fries are one of the quickest meals you can make, but once you start cooking, there’s little time to do anything but STIR!  Prep all your ingredients and arrange them near the stove before you begin for stress-free stir-frying.

Weight Watchers, Teriyaki Chicken and Snow Pea Stir-Fry, Cook it Fast, 2014


Thai Chicken Pizza

Thai Chicken Pizza

Thai Chicken Pizza

This recipe, Thai Chicken Pizza, serve this pizza as is, or with optional toppings, such as thinly sliced basil, cilantro, chopped peanuts and/or crushed red pepper on the side.


Thai Chicken Pizza Recipe


Thai Chicken Pizza

20 oz. prepared whole-wheat pizza dough

¼ cup smooth natural peanut butter

3 Tbsp. water

2 tsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce

2 tsp. rice vinegar

2 tsp. minced fresh ginger

1 clove garlic, minced

1 tsp. canola oil

8 oz. boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed and diced

1 red pepper, diced

4 scallions, thinly sliced

2/3 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese


Place oven rack in the lowest position; preheat to 450 F.  Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.

Roll out or stretch dough on a lightly floured surface into a rough 16 inch oval.  Transfer to the baking sheet.  Bake on the bottom rack until puffed and lightly crisped on the bottom. 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk peanut butter, water, soy sauce, vinegar, ginger and garlic in a small bowl until well combined.

Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat.  Add chicken and cook, stirring, until cooked through, 2 to 4 minutes.  Transfer to a medium bowl.  Add bell pepper, scallions and 1 tablespoon of the peanut sauce to the chicken; toss to combine.

Remove the crust from the oven; spread evenly with the remaining peanut sauce.  Top with the chicken mixture, then sprinkle with cheese.  Return the pizza to the oven and bake on the bottom rank until the crust is crispy and golden and the cheese is melted, 11 to 13 minutes.

Shopping Tip:  Look for balls of whole-wheat pizza dough, fresh or frozen, at your supermarket.  Choose a brand without hydrogenated oil.


(Recipe for Thai Chicken Pizza, Diabetic Connect, 2015)


Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes

Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes

Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes


This recipe, Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes, we’ve taken the frying and fuss out of crab cakes by shaping and baking them in muffin tins.  For the best taste, look for pasteurized crabmeat in the refrigerator case at your market’s fish counter, a better choice than canned varieties.  Try these cakes with tangy tartar sauce and coleslaw.


Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes Recipe


Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes

1 lb. crabmeat

2 cups fresh whole-wheat breadcrumbs

½ cup red bell pepper, minced

3 scallions, sliced

¼ cup reduced-fat mayonnaise

2 large eggs

1 large egg white

10 dashes hot sauce, such as, Tabasco

½ tsp. celery salt

¼ tsp. freshly ground pepper

6 lemon wedges, for garnish


Preheat oven to 450 F.  Generously coat a 12 cup non-stick muffin pan with cooking spray.

Mix crab, breadcrumbs, bell pepper, scallions, mayonnaise, eggs, egg white, hot sauce, celery salt and pepper in a large bowl; mix until well combined.  Divide mixture evenly among muffin cups.  Bake until crisp and cooked through, 20 – 25 minutes.  Serve with lemon wedges.          6 servings, 2 cakes each

*  Cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.  Reheat in microwave or serve cold.


(Recipe for Muffin-Tin Crab Cakes, Diabetic Connect, 2015)


Apple Turkey Picadillo


Apple Turkey Picadillo

Apple Turkey Picadillo

This recipe, Apple Turkey Picadillo, is a twist on the Latin American staple that‘s made healthier with ground grand turkey and crisp apples.  It doubles well.  Try tucking it into whole-wheat tortillas or serve over instant brown rice for a quick and healthy supper.


Apple Turkey Picadillo Recipe


Apple Turkey Picadillo

2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1/3 cup finely chopped red onion

1 garlic clove, minced

8 oz. 99% lean ground turkey

½ tsp. ground cumin

½ tsp. dried oregano

¼ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. freshly ground pepper

1/8 tsp. ground cloves

1 Tbsp. cider vinegar

1 medium tart green apple, peeled and chopped

1 cup chopped tomato

3 Tbsp. chopped green olives

½ tsp. Worcestershire sauce

¼ cup sliced scallion greens


Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic; cook until soft, stirring often, about 2 minutes.  Add turkey; cook, stirring and breaking up, until lightly browned, 4 to 6 minutes.

Stir in cumin, oregano, salt pepper and cloves; cook for 30 seconds.  Stir in vinegar, scraping up any browned bits.  Stir in apple, tomato, olives and Worcestershire sauce.  Reduce heat and gently simmer. Stirring often, until any liquid in the pan has reduced to a syrupy, about 8 minutes.  Stir in scallion greens and serve.           2 serving, 1 ¼ cups each


(Recipe for Apple Turkey Picadillo, Diabetic Connect, 2015)


Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad


Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad

Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad

This recipe, Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad is from Diabetic Connect.  This couldn’t be simpler to make.  It’s a refreshing dish to serve on a hot summer’s night or bring it to your warm-weather potluck: just toss the salad with the dressing when you’re ready to serve.


Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad Recipe


Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad

8 oz. Chinese egg noodles, or other thin noodles or pasta, fresh or dried

1 cup creamy peanut butter

¾ cup rice vinegar

2 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil

2 Tbsp. Shaoxing wing or dry sherry (see Notes)

1 cup thinly sliced scallions

2 Tbsp. naturally brewed reduced-sodium soy sauce

1 Tbsp. Asian chile sauce (see Notes)

2 heads baby romaine or 1 head regular romaine lettuce

1 ½ lbs. cooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, sliced crosswise into ¼ inch slices and chilled

2 medium red peppers, cut into ¼ inch dice

1 large English cucumber, peeled, seeded, halved lengthwise and cut into ¼ inch slice

Salt, to taste

Freshly ground pepper, to taste

Toasted sesame seeds for garnish (see Notes)


Fill a large bowl with water and add ice cubes.  Cook noodles to boiling water until tender, 2-4 minutes if fresh; about 6 minutes for dry (or according to package directions).  Drain and transfer the noodles to the ice water.  When the noodles are cold, drain well and transfer to a very large bowl.  Set aside.

Meanwhile, whisk peanut butter, vinegar, sesame oil, and Shaoxing (or sherry) in a bowl until smooth.  Add scallions, cilantro, if using, soy sauce and hot sauce; stir to blend.

If using baby romaine, half lengthwise, notch out the core, and cut crosswise into ½ inch pieces.  If using regular romaine, remove the tougher outer leaves.  Halve lengthwise, notch out the core, halve again, and cut crosswise into ½ inch pieces.  You should have about 8 cups.

Add lettuce, chicken bell peppers and cucumbers to the noodles.  Add three-fourths of the dressing and toss to coat.  Season with salt and pepper.  Add the remaining dressing if desired.

Transfer the salad to a serving bowl.  Serve garnished with sesame seeds.

NOTES:   Shaoxing, is a seasoned rice wine.  It is available at most Asian specialty markets and in the Asian section of some larger supermarkets.  If unavailable, dry sherry is the best substitute.

Sambal oelek, a spicy blend of chilies, brown sugar and salt, and Sriracha, Thai chile sauce, can be found in the Asian section of many large supermarkets and at Asian markets.

Look for toasted sesame seeds at the supermarket near other Asian ingredients.  Or toast regular sesame seeds in a small dry skillet OVER LOW HEAT, stirring constantly, until golden and fragrant, about 2 minutes.

TIP:  To quickly poach boneless, skinless chicken breasts, place in a large skillet or saucepan.  Add lightly salted water (or chicken broth) to cover and bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer gently until the chicken is cooked through and no longer PINK in the middle, 10 to 20 minutes, depending on side.

IF PREPARING AHEAD OF TIME:  Cover and refrigerate the salad for up to 1 day or prepare the dressing (step 2), cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days; thin with a little water as needed.


(Recipe for Sesame Chicken Cucumber Noodle Salad came from Diabetic Connect, 2014)


Shrimp with Mango & Basil

Shrimp with Mango & Basil

Shrimp with Mango & Basil


This recipe, Shrimp with Mango & Basil is from Diabetic Connect.  This one-pan stir fry is an Indian feast of sweet shrimp, perfumy mangoes and spicy and spicy basil.  It’s guaranteed to evoke dinnertime oohs and ahhs.  Carbs are a time-tested way to take the pop out of the heat, so make sure you have plenty of aromatic jasmine rice to go with this fiery dish.  Use pre-peeled shrimp to make preparation a breeze.

Shrimp with Mango & Basil Recipe

Shrimp with Mango & Basil

1 lb. raw shrimp (21-25 per pound), peeled and deveined, tails left on

¼ tsp. salt

¼ –  ½ tsp. cayenne pepper

¼ tsp. ground turmeric

1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 large ripe, firm mango, peeled and cut into ½ inch cubes

1 bunch scallions, green tops only, thinly sliced

¼ cup firmly packed fresh basil leaves, finely chopped

Toss shrimp with salt, cayenne to taste and turmeric in a medium bowl.  Cover; refrigerate for about 30 minutes.

Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; place the shrimp in a single layer and cook until the undersides turn pink, about 1 minute.  Flip them over and cook for 1 minute.

Add mango, scallion greens and basil and cook, stirring until the shrimp is just cooked and starts to barely curl, 1 to 2 minutes.   Enjoy!             4 serving

** Serve with rice and vegetable.


(Recipe for Shrimp with Mango & Basil came from Diabetic Connect, 2014)


Bacon-and-Cheese Cornbread Pudding

Bacon-and Cheese Cornbread Pudding

Bacon-and-Cheese Cornbread Pudding


This dish can be prepared in advance; it can also be assembled the night before and cooked before you’re ready to serve it.

Bacon-and-Cheese Cornbread Pudding Recipe


Bacon-and-Cheese Cornbread Pudding

3 large eggs, divided

3 cups milk, divided

1 (8.5 oz.) box cornbread mix

6 pieces bacon

2 cups shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese

¼ cup thinly sliced scallions


Preheat the oven to 400 F.  Coat a deep-dish pie plate with cooking spray.

Lightly beat 1 egg with 1 cup of milk; stir in the cornbread mix and let stand 5 minutes to allow some (not all) of the lumps to dissolve.  Transfer to the pie dish and bake until a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean, about 17 to 20 minutes.  Remove from oven, reduce oven temperature to 50 degrees, and allow cornbread to cool, cut in 1 inch pieces.

Cook the bacon; drain on paper towel and crumble.

Beat the remaining 2 eggs with a fork; stir in the remaining 2 cups of milk and cheese.  Add the cornbread, bacon and scallions; allow to stand 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cornbread becomes soggy.

Wipe out the pie dish and again coat with cooking spray.  Pour the bread pudding mixture into the prepared pan and bake until the center is just set and a toothpick comes out clean, about 40 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly before cutting into wedges to serve.             8 servings


(Recipe for Bacon-and-Cheese Cornbread Pudding was is Newsday, December, 2013)


Spinach Dip

Spinach Dip

Spinach Dip

In 1998 my husband, Mike and myself had gone to the First Greco Family Picnic (they have it every 5 years).  Over the next few months, Diane Randesi (one of the children of the Greco clan) had put together a cookbook that everyone who attended the picnic (about 100 people or more) contributed recipes to the cookbook.

Spinach Dip/by Sue Greco/The Greco Family “Cook”Book

Spinach Dip

1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen spinach, chopped, thawed and squeezed

1 cup mayonnaise

½ cup scallions, thinly sliced

½ parsley, fresh, chopped

¼ cup plain yogurt

¼ tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

1 Lb. round rye bread (plus an extra loaf for more to dip)

Mix all ingredients (except bread) and chill in refrigerator.  Carefully slice off top of bread round, and hollow out the center.  Use the hollowed-out pieces for dipping. 

Pour chilled dip into hollow bread round.  Place cut-up bread on the serving plate around the bread round.  Replace top of bread round until ready to serve or when transporting.  When ready to serve, cut up an extra loaf of bread into pieces for dipping.  Store in refrigerator. 

(Recipe for the Spinach Dip was in the Greco Family “Cook”Book, Sue Greco, 1998.)

Go onto my site:, and leave a message – it’s at the top of each recipe on the right side…it will tell you to leave a comment.  I would like to know your thoughts of the recipe.