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Old 06-17-2005, 09:40 PM   #11
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Guilt-Free Mac n Cheese

1/2 c fat-free milk
1 c 1% cottage cheese
1/4 c finely chopped onion
2 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
1/4 tsp salt
pepper to taste
3 c cooked elbow macaroni
1/2 c reduced-fat cheddar cheese,divided.

In a blender,combine the milk,cottage cheese,onion,parmesan cheese,salt and pepper.Cover and process until smooth.Pour into a bowl,stir in the macaroni and 1/4 c cheese.

Transfer to a 1-qt baking dish coated with nonstick cooking spray.Sprinkle with remaining cheese.Cover and bake at 350 for 30 minutes.Uncover,bake 5-10 minutes longer or until edges are bubbly.
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Old 06-17-2005, 09:48 PM   #12
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My favourite comfort food is spaghetti bolognaise - but I make it healthy by using only 98% fat-free ground beef as the meat, and tons of veggies in the sauce (celery, squash, peppers, onions, mushrooms, carrots). I use extra-virgin olive oil to saute everything in (very good for reducing LDL cholesterol and your heart in general), and bump up the flavour with lots of herbs and black pepper rather than salt. It's very low-fat and packed full of vitamins and antioxidants. Served with wholewheat spaghetti, it's very healthy!

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Old 06-18-2005, 05:38 AM   #13
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hot cocoa is a nice comfort drink. you can get sugar-free mix; my Grandpa gets that and i think it's only 30 or 40 calories per packet. he's made it for me before and it was pretty good. if you add a splash of skim milk you can get in some calcium.
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Old 06-18-2005, 12:25 PM   #14
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mrsdove, I know it seems like there aren't any spicy spices in there, but mine always turnes out pretty spicy. I think it is because I use the already ground, pure ground McCormick black pepper which is pretty spicy pepper, not like freshly ground.
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Old 06-18-2005, 11:03 PM   #15
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Since "Comfort" food is really a subjective personal thing - what food brought/brings you comfort ... and what foods are your trying to make healthier?
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Old 06-18-2005, 11:14 PM   #16
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There is nothing inherently unhealthy about pancakes, or mac & cheese, or spaghetti. What you have to watch out for is eating them and nothing else, or eating too much of them. It sounds to me that guilt is the problem and not food.

Relax and enjoy a comforting meal and read a good book or talk with a friend.

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Old 06-19-2005, 07:09 AM   #17
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A comfort food for me is New England Boiled Dinner, and you can't get much healthier than that. But honestly, most comfort foods aren't any more unhealthy than any other foods. I'm with tj. I, personally, make a lot of soups and stocks -- I really do keep a bag in the freezer where I toss vegs that are getting a little to old, or the ends of vegs I've sliced on the mandolin for salads, and bones and odds and sods. Sometimes they add up to a soup in and of themselves (the hot wings and ribs you don't eat at a restaurant make a really neat stock!!!). Then there's those leg-and-thighs you can get for under fifty cents a pound. I make stock with them, fridge and defat, and toss in the freezer. I used to "always" use dried beans, but have discovered over the years that canned ones are just as good, and you never get a bad batch. Anyway, point being that I make gallons of home made soups all winter long. Very healthy, and very comforting.
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Old 09-25-2005, 12:32 AM   #18
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With colder weather coming up, I thought some might be more interested in this thread. A favorite is a poached chicken.

Very simple. Rinse one whole chicken. Place in a large stock pot, cover with water, and put over medium-to-high heat. Let it slowly approach a boil. You don't want to boil the bird, as soon as bubbles hit the surface, turn the heat down to just below boiling (this will be different on each stove). Boiling the chicken will make it tough.

Now start thinking veggies. I like a few carrots, at least one onion, and a potato or two. I like to keep them large, so add them about a half hour after the chicken. You may need to turn up the heat to bring it to a boil again, but immediately turn it back down.

If I have them fresh, I add a branch of sage and one of thyme. I don't particularly like dried sage in this dish (more because it clouds the broth than anything having to do with flavor), but will use a tablespoon of dried thyme.

If you keep the temperature just right, you can have this onthe stove all day. One great addition is, if you can get them, some fresh green beans tossed in a half-hour or so before serving.

I cook this for a total of at least two hours (great crock pot meal), but as many as 4. Just don't let it boil for more than a few seconds when bringing the pot up to heat.

Put the bird in a large bowl, surround with the veggies, and pour the broth over all. Serve with good bread and butter. You don't even need a salad, there are so many veggies (my aunt also would put in parsnips and/or turnips). As simple as this sounds, you' be surprised at how tender the chicken is and how freh everything tastes.

and the best part is that you bone the leftover chicken, chop the leftover veggies, and you have chicken soup to die for.
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Old 09-25-2005, 11:33 AM   #19
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You can re-invent lots of recipes to make them healthier.
Here are some tips:
*use skim milk instead of whole
*use evaporated fat-free milk in place of cream, or skim milk + reduced fat cream cheese
*use Velveeta Lite instead of cheddar cheese
*use low fat soups...check the label, as some those not labeled as reduced fat are still low fat...golden mushroom,for instance
*use ground turkey instead of ground beef, and turkey sausage instead of pork
*replace butter or other fat with olive oil
*use nonstick skillets, that require only 1-2 tbls oil for flavor
*steam vegies in chicken broth to give them flavor without rich sauces
*use lots of fresh herbs, garlic, onions, etc to flavor your food so you won't need so much salt
*use whole grain pastas and breads, brown rice, and fewer potatoes (the starch turns to sugar)
*avoid boxed dinners, which are full of sodium and preservatives
*avoid processed meats (lunchmeat, etc) for the same reason

Hope I gave you some ideas!

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Old 10-26-2005, 01:16 PM   #20
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Thanks constance, that makes so much sense.
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