Healthy Eating Recipes

healthy eating recipes

Healthy Eating Recipes

Since cooking is such a singularly personal endeavor, I always hesitate to share instructions on how to prepare my favorite dishes. Experience has taught me that cooks are a diverse group with regard to expertise, tastes, common sense and even frugality. The question is how do I tailor a recipe so that it is successful for everyone who tries it, taking into account all of the above-mentioned variations?

Healthy Eating Recipes - Do you know the basics?

There are so many techniques and bits of knowledge that are part of cooking and baking, that it is often difficult to know how much information to include in the instructions. In other words, how much basic cooking knowledge can we assume?

Take my measure

There is also the problem that I rarely measure ingredients, except when baking. Baking is a more exact science than mere cooking, because the proportions of say, yeast, salt, baking powder, etc., will have a tremendous effect on the quality of the finished baked goods. Time and temperature in the oven is also a critical part of the baking process, so you dare not tamper with these too much, if you want your baked goods to look and taste as the recipe promises.


Fun Fact for Healthy Eating Recipes: When I was a young bride, I invited my in-laws over for my husband’s birthday. I was going to make his favorite cake, using my mother-in-law’s recipe. (I must mention here that my mother-in-law makes the most wonderful scratch cakes that you have ever tasted!) I measured the ingredients for the cake carefully and set the oven timer for the 15 minutes called for in the recipe. When the buzzer went off, I thought the cake layers could not possibly be done yet, so, just for good measure, I let them cook for an additional 15 minutes.

Well, the rest is family lore, since the resulting layers were more suitable for tossing like a Frisbee than to be part of a chocolate birthday torte. I had to think quickly, so I went to the store and bought a box cake and had it ready in time for my guests. It should be noted that that was the only time in my married life that I ever made a box cake, a “sin” compounded in my eyes by serving it to the scratch-cake-baking queen--my mother-in-law! She was a good sport about it, but I still occasionally get teased about my “Frisbee torte.”


As you like it

On the other hand, if you are cooking soup, or preparing a casserole, you may alter the amount of seasonings and other ingredients to taste, or even make a soup thicker or thinner according to your personal preference. You may also simmer the soup for a longer or shorter period without too much difficulty.

Of course, this is where common sense should intrude. You probably shouldn’t add 1/2 cup of cayenne pepper to any recipe, regardless of your culinary tastes. If the recipe calls for that amount, your common sense should tell you that it is a typo that should probably read 1/2 teaspoon! In addition, you will need to simmer your soup long enough for it to be cooked properly, but not so long that the ingredients turn to mush!

You might not think that frugality would affect a person’s ability to follow instructions. However, I have learned that a frugal cook will approach cooking in a way that would not occur to a more extravagant chef. If the instructions call for what a frugal person might consider “expensive” ingredients, that person may seriously change the the outcome by changing the amount or type of ingredients it includes. This could be disastrous to some taste buds.


Fun Fact for Healthy Eating Recipes: I once gave a recipe to a friend, and she later invited me over for dinner where she planned to use that recipe. The dish she served that evening, apparently prepared using my instructions, was unrecognizable to me. It was also nearly inedible, but I managed to eat it without giving myself away. I knew that I had not mistaken the instructions, but her frugality kept her from including the type and amount of ingredients needed to make the dish palatable—at least to me!


Dive in at your own risk!

With the above-mentioned warnings in mind, I have included here for your enjoyment some of my favorite dishes. Most of these are completely my own, either developed from scratch or by altering other dishes that I have discovered over the years.

Please feel free to modify these healthy eating recipes and make them your own. Keep in mind, though, if you change the recipe too much, I cannot be held accountable for the results! Those of you who are frugal must grit your teeth and put in all the cheese, or nuts or asparagus, etc. that the instructions require--or accept the consequences!

Enjoy these healthy eating recipes! 

Vegetarian Lasagna

Meatless Meatballs

Four-Bean Chili

Nut Loaf

Cottage Cheese Loaf

Minestrone

Lentil Soup

Tofu sloppy Joes

Baked Vegetables with Brown Rice

Fruit and Nut Casserole

Split Pea Soup

Navy Bean Soup

Potato Borscht

French Onion Soup

Refried Beans

Vegetarian Calzones

Baklava

100% Whole Wheat Bread

Granola

Peanut Butter Fudge

Wassail (Hot Spiced Punch)

Potato Salad 

Yogurt Recipes


Click here to go from Healthy Eating Recipes page to Child Nutrition page.




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