Chile Lime Salmon with Coconut “Nice” Rice and Mango Salsa

It’s been a bit since I’ve posted so I’m feeling a bit rusty…the summer has been hectic with lots of travel and weekends spent with family and friends.  I’m finally starting to feel like I’m getting back into my normal routine, although I haven’t gotten back into working out in the mornings.  For now I’m just glad my schedule has allowed me to get in those workouts after work.  At some point I’ll get back to mornings because it’s so much easier to get it done first thing and know that no matter what the rest of the day throws at me, I’ve gotten a healthy start.

Being out of my routine has left me feeling a bit stressed and drained at times and working out in the evenings means less time to prepare a healthy dinner.  So our meals have consisted of things that cook up much more quickly, or don’t require any cooking at all!  The most time consuming part of this recipe is chopping up the fruit and vegetables for the salsa.  Even so, it can be done in the amount of time it took to get the rice going and the salmon in the oven to cook.

The mix of cool and crunchy fresh fruits and vegetables in the salsa totally makes this dish and makes it perfect for summer when you don’t feel like eating something hot and heavy.  Plus the mix of colors make it so beautiful that you can’t help but scoop it into your mouth :).  Using a store bought seasoning mix also cuts down on time and the ingredient list for this dish.

I used my favorite simple method for cooking the salmon.  This method can be used for cooking salmon for just about any dish with varying flavor combinations.  It leaves the salmon perfectly cooked and moist in the center, with a slightly crunchy texture on the edges, which I love.  The key is to get a pan that comes with a grill tray or rack.  This allows the salmon to cook evenly all around and achieve the slightly crunchy exterior with a few minutes on broil.  Line the bottom with foil for easy cleanup – extra bonus!

Here are some similar pans to the one I use:  11X13 or 9×13

Salmon Roast Pan

I used both frozen salmon filets as well as frozen riced cauliflower in this recipe – having some staple frozen items on hand makes it easier to prepare healthy meals when I haven’t done a great job of planning ahead.  To quickly thaw the salmon, I simply placed the individually wrapped frozen filets in slightly warm water for about 20 minutes (don’t use hot water or you’ll start to cook the salmon!).

For the “nice” rice, I used a mixture of both cooked rice and riced cauliflower.  The riced cauliflower is an easy way to sneak in some extra vegetables, but you could certainly just use rice – just double the amount of rice and coconut milk called for in the recipe.  I don’t think this would work well only using riced cauliflower, as you wouldn’t be able to get as much coconut flavor into the riced cauliflower without making it mushy.  If you do try it though, let me know how it turns out!

Alright, on to the recipe…

Salmon Coconut Rice Mango Salsa

Ingredients:

Servings:  4          Time:  30 minutes

  • 4 x 5-6oz salmon filets, thawed if previously frozen
  • 2 T chile lime seasoning, divided, such as Trader Joe’s
  • 1/2 C jasmine rice
  • 12 oz frozen riced cauliflower
  • 1 C plus 2 T lite coconut milk
  • 1 t olive oil or butter
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Mango Salsa:

  • 2 ripe mangoes, peeled, cored and diced small (about 1/4 inch dice)
  • 2 red bell peppers, diced
  • 1 small red onion, diced
  • 3 mini persian cucumbers or seedless cucumbers, diced
  • 1 large avocado, diced
  • 2 limes, juiced + zest of 1 lime
  • 1/4 bunch cilantro, chopped

Instructions:

  1. Combine the rice and 1 C coconut milk in a small sauce pan and cook according to instructions
  2. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees F.  Line broil pan with foil.  Place salmon skin side down on grill rack.  Sprinkle with approximately 1 T of chile lime seasoning blend.  Place salmon in oven and cook to about medium wellness, 10 – 12 minutes.  Turn oven up to broil, and continue to cook salmon for another 3-4 minutes.  Remove from oven once slightly crisped on the outside and set aside.
  3. While the salmon cooks, dice fruits and vegetables for mango salsa and toss to combine.  Ensure lime juice thoroughly coats the diced avocado to avoid browning.  Add additional 1 tablespoon of chile lime seasoning to salsa mixture.  Refrigerate until ready to use.
  4. Once rice has finished cooking, remove from heat.  Heat a small amount of olive oil or butter in a small saute pan.  Add frozen riced cauliflower and saute until heated through.  Add cooked rice to pan, stir to combine, adding 2 remaining tablespoons of coconut milk to mixture.  Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Plate 1/4 of cauli rice mixture, 1 salmon filet, and 1/4 of mango salsa mixture and enjoy!

Nutrition info:

580 tot cal, 23g fat, 51g carb, 44 g protein


Basil Chicken Coconut Curry {DF, GF}

I love curries of just about any type.  Curry is also surprisingly versatile, especially when paired with chicken, which naturally lends itself to being flavored in just about any way imaginable!

Last week, I was feeling a bit uninspired, and happened upon a recipe for basil chicken with coconut curry sauce, which sounded delicious!  I saved it, thinking I would come back to it at some point.  That some point happened to  be that very evening!

While at the grocery store, I was perusing the vegetable and produce section and realized that asparagus season is upon us!  I don’t know about you, but for me, asparagus is just SOOO much more enjoyable during the spring months when it’s in season.  So I put a few bunches of it in my cart, and aha!  inspiration hit!  Why not bump up the vegetable factor in that basil chicken recipe and add some seasonal vegetables such as asparagus!  I also knew I had some frozen peas in the freezer at home, so I ran with the idea.

What a great decision it was!  This smelled DIVINE while simmering away and was oh so delicious and flavorful! It was pretty hard to sit there and let it simmer as my mouth was watering from the smell!  I nearly burned my tongue because I didn’t wait long enough to dig in after serving it up.

It’s actually pretty mild as far as things in the curry department go, so if you’re new to curry, give this a shot!  Even if you’re a curry aficionado, I guarantee you will love this!   It’s a curry that just about anyone could get on board with!

Basil Chicken

Basil Chicken Coconut Curry

Servings: 4          Total active time:  ~ 30 minutes

Ingredients:

  1. 1 lb chicken breast, cut into 1 inch cubes
  2. 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  3. 1 lb fresh asparagus, cut into 1 inch peices
  4. 1 C frozen peas
  5. 1 14oz can light coconut milk
  6. 5 cloves garlic, minced
  7. 1/8 – 1/4 t cayenne
  8. 1 1/2 T dried basil
  9. 1/2 t chili powder
  10. 1 t ground ginger
  11. 1 T curry powder
  12. Salt and pepper to taste
  13. 1 T cornstarch (gluten free)
  14. 2 T olive oil
  15. Fresh basil for serving
  16. 3 C riced cauliflower** or cooked white rice

Instructions:

  1. Combine chili powder, curry, cayenne, salt and pepper in a large bag or bowl.  Toss with chicken to coat and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  2. Heat 1 T olive oil over medium heat.  Cook onion, garlic, and dried basil for a few minutes until onion is soft and translucent.
  3. Add chicken, asparagus, and peas and continue to saute until chicken is cooked through.  Add about 1/2 of coconut milk.  Thoroughly mix remaining coconut milk with cornstarch and add to pan.
  4. Bring to a simmer and allow to thicken, about 10 minutes.
  5. Serve over cooked, riced cauliflower or rice, top with finely chopped basil, and enjoy!

**For the cauliflower rice, I used a bag of frozen riced cauliflower.  I heated a small amount of olive oil in a small saute pan over medium-high heat, added the frozen cauliflower, and sauted until it was heated through.  I lighted salted it and added a few grounds of fresh black pepper as well.

Nutrition info (including 1/4 of the riced cauliflower):

396 total cals, 36 g protein, 30 g carb, 16 g fat

Note:  CeceOnTheGo participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.  The products linked are products actually used when preparing this recipe

Buffalo Chicken Dip (Dairy Free)

With the Superbowl right around the corner, I thought I would share one of my favorite healthy and easy appetizers!

Before I fully committed to going dairy-free (because of GI issues amongst other things), I LOVED the cheesy, gooey, spicy, salty, chickeny buffalo chicken dip that always seemed to make an appearance at sporting and tailgating events.

Last year, we had a few friends over to watch the Superbowl and I thought I was really going to miss having buffalo chicken dip at such events.  But then I thought, why should I have to miss it?  Surely there’s a way to get something at least similar without dairy – there’s all kinds of dairy replacements available these days!

So I started experimenting, and came up with a pretty good substitute.  Our friends, who are mostly all dairy eaters, even liked it!

buffalo chicken dip

Buffalo Chicken Dip (Dairy Free)

Serves:  6            Time:  ~20 minutes

Ingredients:

  1. 2 medium sized chicken breast (10-12 oz total)
  2. 5 oz store-bought roasted garlic hummus (about half of a 10 oz container) (or make your own if you have time! 🙂 )
  3. 6-7 T Hot Sauce (I prefer Frank’s)
  4. 1/3 C Avocado Mayonaisse (or light mayo of your choice)
  5. 1 T Fresh Lemon Juice
  6. 1 T onion powder
  7. 1 T garlic powder
  8. 1/4 C shredded cheese alternative (such as Trader Joe’s Almond Mozzarella Style Shreds)
  9. 1/4 C Nutritional Yeast, such as Braggs
  10. 2 T Tahini
  11. 1-2 T unsweetened non-dairy milk, such as cashew or almond, as necessary

Instructions:

  1. Poach the chicken breast until cooked through.  Place chicken breast in small sauce pan and cover with water.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and let simmer approximately 15 minutes or until cooked through.  Allow to cool and then shred.
  2. Meanwhile, mix all other ingredients thoroughly in an oven safe or microwave safe dish.
  3. Add the chicken to the rest of the ingredients, adding small amounts of non-dairy milk as necessary to thin.
  4. Prior to serving, warm in the oven at 350F or in the microwave.
  5. Serve with veggies or chips of choice.  I enjoy this with large slices of red bell pepper or celery!

Mmm-mmm!

Nutrition info:  192 tot cal, 9.9 g fat, 8.8 g carb, 16 g protein

 

Note:  CeceOnTheGo participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.  The products linked are products actually used when preparing this recipe.

Spicy Shrimp with Cauli Mash and Bacony Garlic Brussels

Thanks for joining me!  This site will be a work in progress while I get the hang of this!  Any and all feedback is welcomed and appreciated!

Take care of your body.  It’s the only place you have to live. — Jim Rohn

I’ve been thinking about starting a blog for awhile in order to share recipes (successes as well as probably a few flops) along with ideas on how I stay both mentally and physically fit and healthy.

My journey with learning and loving to cook started at a young age.  I can happily report that both my mom as well as my grandma are amazing cooks so I learned from the best, in my opinion :).

As a young child, I was labeled an “extreme ectomorph”, which basically was medical jargon for lanky and lack of muscle.  Like most kids, my metabolism along with playing multiple sports, allowed me to eat just about anything and everything and remain thin.  Literally, Peanut Buster Parfaits from DQ were a regular part of my diet!

That is, until my thyroid got out of whack my sophomore year of high school.  I gained >30 pounds that school year so I had to start looking for ways that I could continue to prepare and enjoy delicious food but become more conscious of what I using to fuel my body.

Thus, my love of cooking began.

For my first recipe, I’m going to share what I put together for dinner tonight.  After sharing a picture on social media and getting several requests for the recipe, I decided it was time to stop thinking about starting this site and actually get started 🙂

Image may contain: food

Spicy Shrimp w/ Cauli Mash and Bacony Garlic Brussels

Serves: 4                               Total time: ~45 min 

Cauli Mash:

  1. 1 head of cauliflower, cut into medium florets
  2. 3 cloves garlic, minced
  3. 2 T olive oil
  4. 2 C chicken broth
  5. 1 C cashew milk (or milk of choice)
  6. 1/2 C corn meal
  7. 1/3 C nutritional yeast such as Braggs (or cheese such as parmesan if you like)

 Bacony Garlic Brussels:

  1. 1.5 – 2 lbs Brussels spouts, trimmed and halved
  2. 4 oz diced pancetta (or several slices bacon, diced)
  3. 2 cloves garlic, minced
  4. 2 T olive oil
  5. Salt and pepper

Spicy Shrimp:

  1. 1 lb shrimp, peeled and deveined
  2. 2 T olive oil
  3. 1 t crushed red pepper flakes (more or less to taste)
  4. 1 t garlic powder
  5. 2 t chili powder
  6. Salt and Pepper

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450F.  Toss the brussels sprouts ingredients together and spread in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with foil.  Bake in the oven for approximately 20 – 25 minutes, stirring once.
  2. While brussels sprouts cook, start the cauliflower.  In a medium/large stockpot, heat a few of the larger chunks of pancetta over medium heat until some of the fat has rendered.  Remove the pancetta, add olive oil and cauliflower and sauté for a few minutes.  Add the garlic and sauté 1-2 more minutes.  Add the chicken stock and milk of choice, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes or more until the cauliflower is fork tender.  Mash the cauliflower with your fork to desired consistency.  (I like a chunky texture).  Add the corn meal and nutritional yeast (or cheese) and stir to incorporate.  The mixture will thicken up.  Add a few more tablespoons of broth or milk as necessary.
  3. For the shrimp, heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.  Pat the shrimp dry and add to the skillet.  Season with red pepper flakes, garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper.  Using tongs, turn the shrimp and cook on each side about 3-4 minutes.  Remove the shrimp and add a few tablespoons of water or stock and heat for a few minutes to create a sauce.
  4. Layer the mashed cauli, shrimp, and brussels sprouts and enjoy!

Estimated Nutrition Info:

  • **404 tot cal, 21 g carb, 21 g fat, 43 g protein
  • 521 total cal, 30 g carb, 27 g fat, 49 g protein

**I divided the cauli mash and bacony garlic brussels into 6 servings and had leftovers so this nutrition info accounts for that

Note: the original version of this recipe called for 1 15oz can of cannelini beans, mashed, and added to the cauliflower mash.  I recently made this again without the beans and found it equally delicious along with less bloat inducing :).  The nutrition information has been updated to reflect the removal of the beans.

This recipe was adapted from Pinch of Yum

 

Note:  CeceOnTheGo participates in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.  The products linked are products actually used when preparing this recipe.