Sunday, February 22, 2009

Cake Balls

Yes, you read the recipe title correct. They are called Cake Balls and I found the recipe on Allrecipes and needed to give this a try. You can't even imagine how good these are, and if you can see the ingredients below you probably are a little curious at how these even work, but it does (trust me). Now, they aren't entirely WW friendly, but I did offer the points at the bottom (if you even need — or want — to count).

Cake Balls
Makes 34

1 box (9 ounces) Duncan Hines Devil Food's Cake mix
1/2 can Duncan Hines Chocolate Frosting
6 ounces semisweet chocolate
6 ounces white chocolate

Bake cake according to package directions. Let cool and then crumble the cake into a large bowl. Add the chocolate frosting and mix to combine. Place bowl in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Using your hands, roll mixture into about 1 1/2-inch balls (you should have about 34). Place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Place in the refrigerator to chill for at least 4 hours or overnight. (This helps to prevent the cake from creating crumbs in the coating.)

Place semisweet chocolate and white chocolate in separate microwave-safe bowls. Microwave each bowl separately on 50% power at 30 second intervals, stirring after each interval until smooth. Dip half the balls into the melted semisweet chocolate and the other into the melted white chocolate, setting each back on the parchment-lined baking sheet. Using the tines of a fork, drizzle white chocolate on semisweet chocolate-coated balls, and semisweet chocolate on the white chocolate-coated balls. Chill until ready to serve, at least 3 hours.

(Each ball is 3 pts.)

PS: If you can't find the half boxes, just use a regular 18 ounce box of cake mix, prepare as directed and use the full can of frosting, and double the amount of chocolate.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Roasted Chickpeas

My cousin Stacey told me about this easy snack. They almost remind me of soy nuts, but much tastier. Make sure the chickpeas are completely dry before roasting, this will help them dry out faster. Check them every 10 minutes during the baking time since they can burn easily.

Roasted Chickpeas
(Serves 4)

1 can (15 ounces) chickpeas (should measure out to be 1 1/3 cups)
your favorite seasoning blend (I used a Mexican blend)

Rinse chickpeas and dry well. (I let them dry for a few hours.)

Preheat oven to 400F. Spray a baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Spread the chickpeas on the baking sheet. Spray the chickpeas with the cooking spray. Sprinkle liberally with your favorite seasoning. Bake until crisp and split open, shaking the sheet every 10 minutes, 30–40 minutes. Let cool slightly before eating.

(Each 1/3 cup serving is 1 pt.)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Guiness Pot Roast

I've thought of trying this recipe for a long time, and when Stop 'n' Shop had beef roasts on sale, I figured now would be a good time. It was so tender and flavorful, it was amazing. I brought some in for my co-worker, Jen, and she even drank the gravy from the plate (it was that good)! It's even better when you prepare it a day or two in advance.

Guinness Pot Roast
Serves 6

3 cups water
3 packets beef broth granules
2 large dried porcini mushrooms
1 tbsp olive oil
3 pounds lean beef round roast, trimmed of all visible fat
2 medium onions, sliced
1 tsp. light brown sugar
1 can Guinness Beer
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
1 tablespoon cornstarch
6 medium baby potatoes, scrubbed and cut into quarters

Boil 3 cups of water. Add the beef broth granules to the boiling water and stir. Add the dried mushrooms to the broth mixture. Let the mushrooms steep in the broth for 10 minutes. Remove the porcini mushrooms and discard.

In a large pot, add the olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add the beef roast and brown on all sides. Remove roast and transfer to a plate. Add to the onions to the same pot. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and sauté the onions until softened, about 3 minutes.

Return the roast to the pot. Add the Guinness, beef broth, garlic cloves, and Dijon mustard. Reduce heat to simmer and cover the pot. Cook roast for 2 hours, turning often and stirring mixture.

Add the cornstarch to the mixture and stir. Add the potatoes to the pot. Re-cover the pot. Continue cooking until meat falls apart when you stick a fork in it, about 1 hour longer. Remove the roast and the potatoes to a serving platter. Uncover the pot and bring gravy to a boil and let cook for 5 minutes.

To serve, using two forks, pull roast into pieces. Serve gravy alongside the roast and potatoes.

(Each serving is 7 points.)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Chicken Nuggets

I was in the mood for some finger food, so I thought I would make some chicken nuggets. These were actually pretty good, especially since they were fried, but baked. They were really good dipped in some barbecue sauce (my favorite is Sweet Baby Rays). Enjoy!

Chicken Nuggets
Serves 2

7 oz uncooked boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into about 1-inch pieces
1 serving egg substitute
1/3 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1/4 cup uncooked yellow cornmeal
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Place the egg substitute in a bowl. Add the chicken pieces. Place the bread crumbs, cornmeal, garlic powder, cumin, black pepper and salt in a resealable plastic bag; shake to combine. Add the chicken pieces to the plastic bag and shake to coat the chicken.

Place the coated chicken pieces on the prepared baking sheet. Spray with nonstick cooking spray to moisten. Bake, turning halfway through baking, until the crumbs are browned and chicken is no longer pink, about 20 minutes. Serve with your favorite dipping sauce.

(Each serving is 5 pts.)