Braised Beef Cannelloni


We had tons of leftover beef after slow cooking a roast it in the crock pot for spaghetti. This was a great solution for the leftovers! It’s fairly easy and great to freeze and reheat. 

Braised Beef Cannelloni


1 lb. of braised beef (used leftovers)
1 ounce container of light ricotta cheese
1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
8 ounces marinara sauce
1 package of dried cannelloni shells
1/2 tbsp of dried basil
1 tbsp garlic powder


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Cook cannelloni per instructions on package.

In a large bowl, mix meat, ricotta, 1/2 cup of mozzarella, garlic powder, basil, and salt and pepper.

Stuff cooked cannelloni with meat and cheese mixture.

Pour 1/2 cup marinara sauce on baking dish. Place stuffed cannelloni on top of sauce. Pour atop remaining sauce.  Top with remaining mozzarella.

Bake uncovered for 40 minutes.


Seafood Gumbo

image Poppy Tooker’s Seafood Gumbo Scott and I stopped by the Crescent City Farmers Market at the American Can Company last week but because we didn’t get there till 6pm, most of the vendors were closing up shop. As we were walking out, a woman with a bunch of zip lock bags asked if we wanted gumbo crabs…for free. I felt the universe was challenging me to revisit a dish I had so poorly executed in the past. I thanked her and took a bag of crabs. With the help of Poppy Tooker’s recipe, this yankee made right with the gumbo gods. Thanks Poppy!


1/2 cup oil 1 cup flour 4 gumbo crabs 16 ounces crab claw meat 2 pounds shrimp 1 onion, chopped 1 bell pepper, chopped 3 stalks celery, chopped 2 pounds okra, sliced 1/4 inch oil for frying okra 1 1-pound can crushed tomatoes 1 gallon shrimp stock 1 clove garlic 2 teaspoon thyme 1 bay leaf 1 bunch green onions Crystal Hot Sauce to taste

Method of Preparation:

  1. Peel shrimp and combine peels, onion skins and tops in a stock pot. Cover with water and boil for 20 minutes.
  2. Strain and reserve.
  3. Fry okra in very hot oil until lightly browned (or roast).
  4. Make a dark roux with the flour and oil, cooking to the color of milk chocolate brown. Add onions, stirring together until the roux darkens to a bittersweet chocolate brown. Add celery and bell pepper. Sauté for five minutes, then add the gumbo crabs, tomatoes, okra, herbs and shrimp stock. Add garlic and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer 45 minutes or longer.
  5. Ten minutes before serving add shrimp, crab meat, and green onions. Add Crystal Hot Sauce and salt as needed. Serve on top of cooked rice.

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Low-Cal Organic Blueberry Muffins


Low-Cal Organic Blueberry Muffins

  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

  • 1/2 cup white splenda

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar splenda
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Line 6 jumbo muffin cups with paper liners.
  2. Whisk whole wheat flour, white splenda, baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and salt together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk skim milk, egg, softened butter, and vegetable oil. Mix the liquid ingredients into the whole wheat flour mixture to make a smooth batter, and gently fold in blueberries. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups, filling them to the top.
  3. Combine brown sugar splenda with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon in a bowl and spoon the mixture onto the muffins, if desired.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven until the muffins are golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes.

Guilt-Free Spinach Artichoke Jalapeno Dip



Guilt-Free Spinach Artichoke Jalapeno Dip


  • 8.5 ounces artichoke hearts (14 ounce can artichoke hearts, drained)
  • 1 non-fat cottage cheese
  • 16 ounce pack frozen chopped spinach, thawed
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella cheese
  • paprika, 1 tsp
  • 1/2 cup non-fat yogurt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Squeeze excess water from defrosted spinach. Place in bowl with onion, jalapeno, and artichokes. Blend with hand blender. In separate bowl, blend cottage cheese until smooth. Add yogurt and cheese and blend. Add nutmeg, pepper, and paprika. Mix spinach mix and yogurt mix together in over proof dish.  Bake for 25 minutes.

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