Eating healthy is a traditional New Year’s goal

Make one small change in your diet every week to incorporate healthy foods and realize your goals

It’s 2018, and with the new year comes resolutions.

For many people, those goals include eating healthier and exercising more.

Those goals can seem daunting.

The key, experts say, is to break them down into small steps that can more easily be achieved.

To help you eat healthier, aim to add a serving or two of vegetables to your diet each day.

Replace a high-calorie snack with a healthier one, perhaps one with protein to help keep you satisfied longer. Add a serving of a high-fiber food to your diet.

Substitute a serving of water for a can of soda, or drink 100% juice instead of a juice cocktail.

Instead of one processed food item, make the same thing from scratch. Not only will it taste better and be healthier, it will provide you with a sense of accomplishment.

Incorporate any one of these tasks into your daily routine until it becomes a habit, then add another one. By the end of the year, you will indeed be eating healthier.

Another obstacle people face is the misconception that any food described as healthy is lacking in flavor and satisfaction.

The truth is, there are plenty of creative ways to make a tasty, heart-healthy dish.

And you don’t have to be a master chef to whip one up and do it well. Remember, practice makes perfect — and the more you cook, the more you will be able to adjust a recipe to your tastes.

Following are recipes for a few healthy foods from

Just remember that, even when enjoying wholesome foods, moderation is the key to a healthy lifestyle. Don’t eat or drink supersized portions or your hard work will be for naught.

Tortellini Primavera
1 14-ounce can vegetable broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 cup shredded fontina cheese or 3/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon, dill or chives or 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 cups chopped vegetables or 16-ounce bag frozen mixed vegetables
1 16-ounce package frozen cheese tortellini

    Whisk broth and flour in a small bowl.
    Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for one to two minutes, until it begins to brown. Add broth mixture to the pan, bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, about three minutes, until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Remove from heat and stir in cheese, tarragon and salt.
    Add vegetables and tortellini to a large pot of boiling water. Simmer and cook three to five minutes, until vegetables and tortellini are tender. Drain, then add to the pan with the sauce and stir to coat.


Grilled Fish Tacos

For fish:
4 teaspoons chili powder, preferably made with New Mexico or ancho chiles
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 pounds mahi-mahi or Pacific halibut1/2 to 3/4-inch thick, skinned and cut into 4 portions
For coleslaw:
1/4 cup reduced-fat sour cream
1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon lime zest
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 teaspoon sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
3 cups finely shredded red or green cabbage
12 corn tortillas, warmed

    To prepare fish, combine chili powder, lime juice, oil, cumin, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub all over fish, then let stand 20 to 30 minutes.
    To prepare coleslaw, combine sour cream, mayonnaise, cilantro, lime zest, lime juice, sugar, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Mix until smooth and creamy. Add cabbage and toss to combine. Refrigerate.
    Oil a grill rack or a grilling basket, then grill fish over medium-high heat for three to five minutes per side, until it is cooked through and easily flakes with a fork. Transfer fish to a platter and separate into large chunks.
    Serve the tacos family-style by passing the fish, tortillas, coleslaw and taco garnishes separately.
    You can prepare the coleslaw as long as four hours ahead.


Parmesan-Crusted Chicken Tenders
Canola or olive oil cooking spray
1/4 cup flour
2 large eggs
1/2 cup finely shredded Parmesan cheese
1 cup coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat
1 pound chicken tenders
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup marinara sauce, heated

    Place flour in a shallow dish. Lightly beat eggs in another shallow dish. Combine Parmesan and breadcrumbs in a third shallow dish.
    Toss tenders with Italian seasoning, garlic powder and salt in a medium bowl. Coat each tender in flour, shaking off any excess. Dip in egg and let any excess drip off, then roll in the breadcrumb mixture. Place tenders on a large wire rack set on a baking sheet and coated with cooking spray. Generously coat the top of each tender with cooking spray.
    Bake in a 450-degree oven for 10 minutes. Turn each tender over and coat with cooking spray. Continue baking about 10 minutes, until the outside is crisp and the tenders are cooked through.
    Serve tenders with marinara sauce for dipping.


Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Lasagna
1 large egg
1 15 to 16-ounce container part-skim ricotta
1 5-ounce package baby spinach, coarsely chopped
3 large or 4 small portobello mushroom caps, gills removed, halved and thinly sliced
1 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 28-ounce can diced tomatoes
3 cloves garlic, minced
Pinch of crushed red pepper, optional
15 whole-wheat lasagna noodles, uncooked
3 cups shredded part-skim mozzarella

    Combine egg, ricotta, spinach, mushrooms and zucchini in a large bowl.
    Combine crushed and diced tomatoes and their juice, garlic and crushed red pepper in a medium bowl.
    Generously coat a 6-quart or larger slow cooker with cooking spray. Spread 1-1/2 cups tomato mixture in the slow cooker. Arrange five noodles over the sauce, overlapping them slightly and breaking into pieces to cover as much of the sauce as possible. Spread half of the ricotta-vegetable mixture over the noodles and firmly pat down, then spoon 1-1/2 cups sauce over the top and sprinkle with one cup mozzarella.
    Repeat layers one more time, starting with noodles. Top with a third layer of noodles. Evenly spread remaining tomato sauce over noodles. Set aside the remaining one cup mozzarella in the refrigerator.
    Cover the slow cooker and cook on high for two hours or on low for four hours. Turn off the slow cooker, sprinkle the reserved mozzarella on the lasagna, cover and let stand 10 minutes to melt the cheese.
    The dark gills found on the underside of a portobello mushroom cap are edible, but can turn a dish an unappealing gray color. Gently scrape the gills off with a spoon.

Smoky Maple-Mustard Salmon
3 tablespoons whole-grain or Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika or ground chipotle pepper
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
4 4-ounce skinless center-cut wild-caught salmon fillets

    Combine mustard, maple syrup, paprika, pepper and salt in a small bowl.
    Place salmon fillets on a baking sheet lined with foil and coated with cooking spray. Spread the mustard mixture evenly over the salmon. Roast in a 450-degree oven eight to 12 minutes, until just cooked through.


Slow-Cooker Stout and Chicken Stew
6 tablespoons plus 1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2-1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 pieces bacon, chopped
1-2/3 cups (14 ounces) Guinness or other stout beer
1 pound whole baby carrots or large carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 8-ounce package cremini or button mushrooms, halved if large
2 cups chopped onion
4 cloves garlic, minced
1-1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups frozen baby peas, thawed

    Combine six tablespoons flour with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Dredge chicken thighs in the mixture to coat completely, then transfer to a plate.
    Heat two teaspoons oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the chicken and cook two to four minutes per side, until well browned. Transfer to a 5 to 6-quart slow cooker.
    Reduce heat to medium and repeat with the remaining oil and chicken thighs. Arrange chicken in an even layer in the slow cooker.
    Add bacon to the pan and cook two minutes, stirring often. Sprinkle remaining flour over the bacon and cook two minutes more, stirring constantly. Add stout and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Pour mixture over the chicken. Add carrots, mushrooms, onion, garlic and thyme, spreading in an even layer over the chicken. Pour broth over the top.
    Cover and cook four hours on high or seven to eight hours on low, until the chicken is falling-apart tender.
    Stir in peas, cover and cook five to 10 minutes, until peas are heated through. Season with the remaining salt and pepper.

Cheddar-Stuffed Mini Meatloaves With Chipotle Glaze

1 pound 90% or leaner ground beef
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup fine, dry, whole-wheat breadcrumbs
1 large egg
6 tablespoons ketchup, preferably no-salt-added
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup shredded extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper

    Combine beef, onion, breadcrumbs, egg, two tablespoons ketchup, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper in a bowl and mix well. Divide into four even portions and place in four 8 to 12-ounce mini-loaf pans coated with cooking spray and placed on a baking sheet. Make a 1-1/2-inch-deep indentation down the length of each meatloaf. Stuff each indentation with two tablespoons cheese and pinch the edges closed to seal.
    Combine remaining ketchup and chipotle in a bowl, then spread over each loaf.
    Transfer baking sheet to a 400-degree oven and bake 20 to 30 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of a loaf registers 165 degrees.


Quick Roast Chicken and Root Vegetables
1 pound turnips, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 pound baby potatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh marjoram or 1 teaspoon dried
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup flour
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 12-ounce bone-in chicken breasts, skin and fat removed, cut in half crosswise
1 large shallot, chopped
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons red or white-wine vinegar

    Toss turnips, potatoes, 1 tablespoon oil, marjoram, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper together in a medium bowl. Spread in an even layer on a large baking sheet and roast in a 500-degree oven for 15 minutes.
    Place flour in a shallow dish. Transfer two teaspoons flour to a small bowl and whisk in broth, then set aside.     
    Season chicken with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Dredge chicken in the flour, shaking off excess.
    Heat remaining oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken, skinned-side down, and cook about five minutes, until well browned on the bottom. Remove from the heat.
    After the vegetables have been roasting for 15 minutes, stir them and place one piece of chicken, skinned-side up, in each corner of the baking sheet. Set the skillet aside. Return sheet pan to the oven and roast another 20 minutes, until chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender.
    When the chicken and vegetables have about 10 minutes left, return skillet to medium heat. Add shallot and cook about one minute, stirring, until fragrant. Whisk reserved broth mixture, then add to the pan and bring to a boil. Cook about eight minutes, stirring occasionally, until reduced by about half. Stir in mustard and vinegar.
    Serve chicken and vegetables with the sauce.


Braised Beef and Mushrooms
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon butter
4 cups finely diced onions
2 large cloves garlic, crushed and peeled
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons chopped fresh marjoram or 1 teaspoon dried
4 pounds beef chuck, trimmed and cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces
1 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 pounds cremini mushrooms, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
8 large shiitake mushroom caps, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 to 3 teaspoons finely minced fresh tarragon or dill for garnish

    Heat oil and butter in a large heavy casserole or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and cook eight to 10 minutes, stirring, until the onions are soft and beginning to brown. Stir in tomato paste, paprika and marjoram.
    Season beef with 1/2 teaspoon salt and plenty of pepper. Add beef and cremini mushrooms to the pot and gently stir to combine. Add broth and cover with a tight-fitting lid.
    Bake in a 350-degree oven for 1-3/4 to 2-1/2 hours, until beef is very tender. Stir in shiitake mushrooms and continue baking, covered, 15 minutes more. Remove from the oven, uncover and let stand, undisturbed, about 15 minutes.
    Skim or blot any visible fat. Transfer beef and mushrooms to a bowl using a slotted spoon. Return pot to the stove and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook until the sauce just coats a spoon. Stir beef, mushrooms and remaining salt into sauce and heat through, about one minute. Serve garnished with tarragon, if desired.


French Onion Beef Tenderloin

1 pound beef tenderloin or sirloin steak, 1-1-1/2 inches thick, trimmed and cut into 4 steaks
1/2 teaspoon minced dried onion
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 large sweet onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup dry sherry
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
4 slices whole-grain baguette, 1/2-inch thick, toasted
1/2 cup shredded Swiss cheese

    Sprinkle steaks with dried onion, 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Heat one tablespoon oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add steaks and reduce heat to medium. Cook three to six minutes per side, turning once, until desired doneness. Transfer steaks to a plate and tent with foil.
    Add the remaining oil to the pan. Add onions and sherry, cover and cook 10 to 12 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are tender and golden brown and the liquid has evaporated. Sprinkle flour over the onions and stir to coat. Add broth, thyme and remaining salt. Cook about one minute, until bubbling and thickened.
    Remove from heat and return steaks and any accumulated juices to the pan. Pile some onions on top of the steaks. Top each steak with a slice of baguette and some cheese. Transfer pan to oven and broil about trow minutes, until cheese is melted and bubbling. Serve with the onions and sauce.
    The cooking sherry sold in many supermarkets can be high in sodium. Instead, use dry sherry that’s sold with other fortified wines at your wine or liquor store.


Oven-Fried Fish and Chips
Canola or olive oil cooking spray
1-1/2 pounds russet potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick wedges
4 teaspoons canola oil
1-1/2 teaspoons Cajun or Creole seasoning
2 cups cornflakes
1/4 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg whites, beaten
1 pound cod or haddock, cut into 4 portions

    Place potatoes in a colander. Thoroughly rinse with cold water, then pat completely dry. Toss potatoes, oil and 3/4 teaspoon Cajun seasoning in a large bowl. Spread on a large baking sheet coated with cooking spray and bake 30 to 35 minutes in the lower third of a 425-degree oven on the lower oven rack, turning every 10 minutes, until tender and golden.
    Coarsely grind cornflakes in a food processor or blender or crush in a sealable plastic bag. Transfer to a shallow dish. Place flour, the remaining Cajun seasoning and salt in another shallow dish and egg whites in a third dish. Dredge fish in the flour mixture, dip in egg white and then coat all sides with ground cornflakes. Place on a wire rack coated with cooking spray and set atop of large baking sheet. Coat both sides of the breaded fish with cooking spray.
    Bake on the upper oven rack about 20 minutes until opaque in the center and the breading is golden brown and crisp.


Vegetarian Reubens With Russian Dressing

For Russian dressing:
2 tablespoons reduced-fat mayonnaise
2 teaspoons ketchup
2 teaspoons chopped capers
1 teaspoon chopped pickle or relish
For sandwiches:
3 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup sliced mushrooms
5 cups baby spinach
Freshly ground pepper
4 slices rye bread
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat Swiss cheese
1/2 cup sauerkraut

    To prepare Russian dressing, whisk mayonnaise and ketchup in a small bowl until smooth. Stir in capers and pickle.
    To prepare sandwiches, heat two teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and mushrooms and cook four minutes, stirring often, until the onion is softened. Add spinach and cook one to two minutes, stirring, until wilted. Transfer mixture to a plate.
    Coat pan with remaining oil and return to medium heat. Add bread and divide cheese equally among the slices. Divide sauerkraut between two slices and divide spinach mixture between the other two slices. Cook  four to six minutes, until cheese has melted and bread is golden brown. Transfer sandwich halves to a cutting board and divide dressing between the spinach halves. Carefully place sauerkraut halves on top. Cut sandwiches in half and serve.
    The dressing will keep, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.





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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
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