“In the course of my life, I have often had to eat my words, and I must confess that I have always found it a wholesome diet.” ~ Winston Churchill

I guess I’m going to have to eat a little crow.

I was for sure there was no way that I could find (or if I did, enjoy) any lighter (i.e. diet) meals to cook at home.

I’m a southern cook – I like butter and lots of bread. Both preferably fried.

But no need to fret because this leopard has not changed its spots. I have just expanded my horizons a bit and I’m so glad I did because I really needed to start working on this baby weight but cooking is my joy and I was afraid I would be bound to lettuce and grilled chicken forever.

Here is one of my new finds.

Greek Stuffed Chicken with Mango Sauce

(adapted from The Chew)

Chicken

  • 10 oz feta cheese
  • 1 cup packed spinach, chopped
  • 1/2 cup packed parsley, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic (the kind in the jar)
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ground pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon Greek seasoning
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, pounded thin

Mango Sauce

  • 1 large or 2 small mangoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1 14 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried onion
  • 1 teaspoon Greek seasoning
  • 1/2 Jalapeno pepper with ribs and seeds removed, minced

Preheat oven to 375º.

In a medium bowl, mix feta, spinach, parsley, garlic, olive oil and pepper.

Divide mixture between the 4 chicken breasts. Fold over, season with greek seasoning.

Place in greased pan.

Bake for 45 minutes or until cooked through.

Meanwhile, bring all sauce ingredients to a boil in a small saucepan. Reduce to low and simmer for 20-30 minutes.

Serve over chicken.

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-abp

“You know what the secret to weight loss is? Don’t eat much.” ~ Simon Cowell

Okay, I’ve been on this healthier, lower carb, gotta loose some baby weight diet for the past few days.

I’ve never liked it, never been good at it and pretty much know I will never stick to it for long but sometimes it just has to be done.

This time around though, I’ve tried to be creative with my “chicken”. Think outside the box a little. So last night, instead of a typical grilled chicken salad – I decided to step it up with Taziki’s Friday Pasta Salad. (with whole grain pasta, of course)

It was fabulous – it did not feel like diet food at all, which is good because I would just as soon eat nothing than eat blah food.

The recipe below is for the full recipe of the dressing which can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks and is great to throw on any salad. The remaining ingredients can be adjusted to how many you are serving. Of course you could always half the dressing too.

Taziki’s Friday Pasta

Dressing

  • 3 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon green onion or shallot, minced
  • ½ cup balsamic vinegar
  • Juice from one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 ½ cups olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Salad

  • 3 chicken breasts, seasoned with Greek seasoning and pan fried, chopped
  • 1 lb of whole wheat penne pasta
  • 2 small tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 bag mixed greens
  • 1 bag of baby spinach
  • Handful of chopped basil

For the dressing, put first 6 ingredients through mustard in bowl, mix. Then slowly whisk in olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate, covered for at least 30 minutes.

Combine chopped chicken and cooked pasta and coat with dressing (amount determined by how much you made)

Mix greens and place a serving size on each plate. Top with pasta/chicken mixture. Then sprinkle tomatoes, feta and basil.

You may want to add a little dressing to your greens as well. Just a personal preference and how healthy you want to be. 😉

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-abp