Hats off to the chef!

I have to pat myself on the back for a wonderful, healthful meal last night. We had over three friends and I made a delicious meal and a new recipe! That’s one down for the month, and it was soooo easy! Everyone loved it!

We started off the meal with romaine tossed with cucumber, tomato, sunflower seeds, and a sprinkle of croutons. The salad was dressed, lightly, with homemade canola oil-based Caesar dressing, sans egg and any mayonnaise. I made fresh garlic bread with a loaf of Asiago cheese bread, made with Smart Balance and garlic powder. The main course was the new recipe, chicken tamale casserole. I added sides of squash and rosemary potatoes. The squash was cooked over the stove with a mixture of olive oil, balsamic vinegar, garlic, salt, pepper, and the magic ingredient: brown sugar. DELICIOUS! The rosemary potatoes were diced red potatoes tossed in olive oil and crushed garlic, topped with fresh-squeezed lemon juice, sea salt, fresh ground pepper, and rosemary which were baked at 400F for 45 minutes and came out with perfectly browned edges. I typically have trouble getting my potatoes to look so gourmet, but I pulled it off for our guests.

Dessert was left up to my husband: cookie cake. *eye roll*. I really wanted to go with cheesecake, but he vetoed it. Ends up, he was the only one who would’ve passed on cheesecake. I mean, really, who passes on decadent cheesecake?!

Anyways, dinner was a huge success and I have met my goal for the month in trying one new recipe. And the leftovers at lunch were glorious! Though I don’t have a picture of the masterpiece (I need to get better at this!), I will leave you with the recipe. Enjoy!

Chicken Tamale Casserole
1 cup (4 ounces) preshredded 4-cheese Mexican blend cheese, divided
1/3 cup fat-free milk
1/4 cup egg substitute
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (14 3/4-ounce) can cream-style corn
1 (8.5-ounce) box corn muffin mix (such as Martha White)
1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles, drained
Cooking spray
1 (10-ounce) can red enchilada sauce (such as Old El Paso)
2 cups shredded cooked chicken breast
1/2 cup fat-free sour cream

1. Preheat oven to 400°.

2. Combine 1/4 cup cheese and next 7 ingredients (through chiles) in a large bowl, stirring just until moist. Pour mixture into a 13 x 9–inch baking dish coated with cooking spray.

3. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until set. Pierce entire surface liberally with a fork; pour enchilada sauce over top. Top with chicken; sprinkle with remaining 3/4 cup cheese. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until cheese melts. Remove from oven; let stand 5 minutes. Cut into 8 pieces; top each serving with 1 tablespoon sour cream.

Yield: 8 servings
Nutrition Facts*: CALORIES 354; FAT 14.1g; CARBOHYDRATE 36.3g; SODIUM 620mg; PROTEIN 18.9g; FIBER 2.5g
*I have not verified the nutrition facts for accuracy.
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Filed under dinner, entertaining, healthy cooking, recipe, salad

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