Spring! Time to Revamp Your Recipes…

17 04 2014

Ahhhh, the sun is shining (at least for now!) and the temps are warming up. When the weather starts getting lighter and brighter, so do my food choices. Spring is the perfect time to

Cathy Shaw

Cathy Shaw

revamp our recipe list, and bring in some lighter fare. Gone are the days of hunkering down under the blankets, sipping on cocoa and eating hearty stews. It’s time for fresh salads, roasted veggies, festive fruit, and, dare I say it, breaking out the grill!


Many will be celebrating Easter this weekend with a big family meal. I challenge you to lighten it up with some fresh new ideas. Easter dinner often includes ham which is very high in sodium (4oz has approximately 1300mg!). This year, try cooking a boneless pork tenderloin which can have less than 100mg of sodium in a 4oz portion. This will leave you some wiggle room for some great seasoning! Rather than scalloped potatoes that are high in saturated fat, calories and sodium, try baking sweet potatoes and topping with a small pat of butter and a sprinkle of cinnamon sugar. Instead of green bean casserole, try roasting asparagus with a drizzle of olive oil, garlic and fresh ground pepper, or making a 3 bean salad. Prepare fresh, light desserts such as angel food cake with berries and whipped topping, or lemon pudding with vanilla wafer crumbles.

Here are a few recipes that may make it to my family table this weekend. Challenge yourself to try something new, and feel free to share with us!

Apricot Glazed Pork Tenderloin

Serves 5               Total time: ~25 minutes

1 ¼ pound roast

1 Tbsp Olive oil

¼ tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

1/3c apricot preserves

2 Tbsp honey mustard

Brush pork roast with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Place on an aluminum foil lined broiler pan. Broil 5 ½” from heat for 10 minutes or until browned, turning once.

Combine preserves and honey mustard; spread over pork. Continue to broil 10 more minutes, turning once, or until meat thermometer inserted in the center of the meat registers 145 degrees. Cover pork with aluminum foil, and let stand 5 minutes before slicing.

  • If you prefer to roast your pork, roast in a shallow roasting pan at 350 degrees, 40 minutes per pound or until it reaches internal temp of 145 degrees. Apply the glaze half way through cooking time.

Nutrition information:

Pork: (4 oz portion) 239 cal, 9.85g fat, 2.8g saturated fat, 104mg cholesterol, 35g pro, 160mg sodium

Apricot glaze: 51 cal, 12.75g carbohydrate, 31mg sodium

If you prefer to use pork loin chops:

Choose 5-6 boneless pork loin chops (about 4oz each, ¾” thick)

Brush pork with olive oil; season with salt and pepper. Place on an aluminum foil lined broiler pan. Broil 5 ½ in from heat for ~6 minutes each side or until desired doneness (make sure it’s cooked through). While pork chops are cooking, in a small sauce pan mix together apricot preserves and honey mustard and heat slowly until “syrupy”. Once the pork is done, plate pork and drizzle warm apricot glaze over each piece. Enjoy!


Sweet Potatoes and Apples Au Gratin

Makes 12 servings

3 c thinly sliced tart apples (~3 large)

1 tsp lemon juice

3lb sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced (~5 med)

1/4c maple syrup

1Tbsp butter, melted

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp pepper

1c soft bread crumbs

2 tsp olive oil

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

¼ tsp cider vinegar

Place apples in a large bowl and sprinkle with lemon juice. Add sweet potatoes, syrup, butter, salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Transfer to 3qt baking dish coated with cooking spray. Bake uncovered at 400 degrees for 35-40 min or until apples are tender, stirring once.

In a small bowl, combine bread crumbs, oil, cinnamon, nutmeg and vinegar. Sprinkle over potato mixture. Bake 10-15 min longer or until topping is golden brown.

Nutrition information per serving: 130 cal, 2g fat, 136mg sodium, 27g carb, 3g fiber, 2g protein.


Additional recipe links you may enjoy:

Marinated 3 Bean Salad: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/marinated-three-bean-salad

Glazed Carrots: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/glazed-orange-carrots

Pineapple Pudding Cake: http://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/pineapple-pudding-cake




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