Tuesday, September 25, 2007

You learn something new every day…

This information was taken for the First magazine, 10/01/07 issue, page 16 and 17.

Did you know that:
1) The potent nutrients in cabbage can reduce the risk of heart disease by 40%? To slash heart disease risk by 40%, consider eating 1 cup of folate-rich cabbage daily. Researchers at Harvard University report that the nutrient converts the artery damaging compound homocysteine into the amino acid methionine. This strengthens blood vessel walls, resulting in improved circulation and a decreased risk of harmful blood clots.
2) Reduce the risk of breast cancer. Eating four 1 cup servings of cabbage each week can reduce breast cancer risk by 45 %, according to a study in the journal Cancer Research. The credit goes to the vegetable’s stores of indole-3-carbinol (I3C). This phytonutrient prevents the fluctuating estrogen levels that can lead to disease-causing cell mutations.
3) Super-speedy metabolism: Crisp cabbage is one of nature’s top sources of the slimming compound sulforaphane. This detoxifying agent naturally boosts the body’s production of myrosinase, an enzyme that flushes fat-trapping toxins from cells and turbocharges metabolism.
4) Produce a deeper sleep: Munching on 1 cup of cabbage before bed can ensure more restful sleep. The magic ingredient: tryptophan. Brain cells use this amino acid to manufacture serotonin. Increased levels of this neurotransmitter prompt sleep-inducing alpha waves in the brain to improve slumber quality.

Here are three recipes that are cabbage friendly:

Asian Beef Stir-Fry Makes 6 servings.

In greased skillet over medium high heat, cook 1 lb. skirt steak, thinly sliced, 3 min., stirring constantly. Remove beef from skillet. In same skillet, combine 1 small cabbage, cored and cubed; 1 red pepper, seeded and cubed, and ¼ lb. snow peas, trimmed. Return beef to skillet; add ¼ cup stir-fry sauce, like House of Tsang Saigon Sizzle.. Cook 2 min. or until hot.

Sweet and Savory Soup Makes 4 servings.

In saucepot over medium-high heat, cook 3 cans (14.5 oz. each) light and fat-free chicken broth; 1 pkg. (16 oz.) coleslaw mix; 1 onion peeled and chopped, and 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and chopped, 5 minutes., stirring occasionally. In bowl of food processor, puree 2 cups mixture 2 min. Return to saucepot; stir to combine. Cook 2 min. more. Stir in 1/3 cup chopped scallions. Serve.

Sesame Slaw: Makes 6 servings.

In bowl, combine 1 head green cabbage, cored and thinly sliced; 1 medium red bell pepper, cored and thinly sliced, and 1 cup snow peas, halved diagonally. In bowl, stir together 3 scallions, sliced, and 2/3 cup reduced-fat sesame-ginger salad dressing, like Newman’s Own, until blended. Drizzle dressing mixture over coleslaw mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Transfer to serving bowl, if desired. Sprinkle with sesame seeds, if desired.

Tip: Chefs secret: Before tossing outer cabbage leaves, try this tip from Ming Tsai: Rinse the leaves and use them to line the bottom of a steamer basket before tossing in other vegetables. Then discard the leaves before noshing.. This strategy keeps steamed veggies from becoming waterlogged.

Note from Lucy: Hummmmm… maybe that is why the old Cabbage Soup diet worked so well. I love cabbage and now I have even more reasons to eat it. Hope you enjoyed this healthful food lesson, I sure did.

Go check out this blog: http://lovehomemaking.com/2007/09/16/win-an-all-natural-cleaning-and-home-care-guide.aspx and enter a contest to win a book on cleaning with natural products. The book looks awesome and worth a look at.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Was I crazy?

Last Saturday, a group of about 14 people got together to make power supplies for our ham radios. I was told that it would be easy, all you had to do was follow directions. I had been pricing power supplies on the Internet and found that the cheapest one we could buy was about $ 95.00. A friend of mine told me that you could make them for about $ 29.00 so I asked him how we could do that. He gave me the name of a man, he knew, that built them and he would probably be happy to help our group out. I called the man up and he agreed to help us. I reserved the multi-purpose rooms at the church and got the word out. We were told to bring some power tools like a drill, a soldering iron, screw drivers and pliers. He told us that it wouldn’t take but about 4 hours to do the job.

Saturday morning I went in at 8:30am. to set up some tables and chairs. The group was coming in at 9:00am. to start assembling the units. When Bro. Boyer came, he asked several of the men if they could help carry in supplies. He passed out, to each on of us, a little quart sized bag with nuts, bolts, screws, resisters, fuses and other items that I had never seen before. We picked up a plastic container and a thing that looked like a motor. There was also a small fan that we had to install. I took one look at this stuff and wondered what I had gotten us in to…This stuff was so over my head that you would need a pair of binoculars to find it. The men acted like they were let loose in a candy store, picking up parts and putting it together. The three women and I looked at each in astonishment. It turned out that the women were put on an assembly line installing the fans, cutting wires, doing some soldering and doing the easier stuff. I still felt like a duck out of water.

The time went by quickly and at 1:00pm. it was evident that we were no where near finished. Robert Riedel was the first one finished and he left around 4:00pm. Most of the people had working units after they were tested, but there were three that had too much voltage. They worked on those for several hours. Around 6:00pm. I started vacuuming the floor and trying to clean up. At 6:45pm. I told the men that I had to leave and they promised to clean up. I know one thing for sure, I’m not going to do that again….I even wonder if it was worth it to save $65.00.

I went home stressed out, so TF and I went out to dinner for our Saturday night date. We did a little grocery shopping on the way home and when we got home I could barely put away the groceries. I rested my head on a pillow on the couch and promptly fell asleep in my clothes. I woke up the next morning on the couch with a blanket over me.

Did I mention that 8 of us went together and purchased our ham radios? We ordered the IC-2200H Icom single band (2 meter) unit. It is a sturdy little guy that can be used as a home base unit or it can be used in your car as a mobile unit. We got a discount rate with a $ 20.00 rebate thru the end of September. What a deal. Next on the agenda we are purchasing some Arrow J-pole antennas. Once that is done we should be able to transmit! Yea!!! KE5KIO over and out.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Chicken in Creamy Pan Sauce

4 small boneless skinless chicken breast halves (1 lb.)
2 Tbsp. flour
1 Tbsp. oil
3/4 cup fat-free reduced-sodium chicken broth
4 oz. (1/2 of 8-oz. pkg.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, cubed
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh parsley

COAT chicken with flour. Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add chicken; cook 5 to 6 min. on each side or until cooked through (165°F). Remove chicken from skillet, reserving drippings in skillet. Cover chicken to keep warm.
ADD broth to skillet; stir to scrape up browned bits from bottom of skillet. Add cream cheese; cook 2 to 3 min. or until cream cheese is melted and sauce starts to thicken, stirring constantly with wire whisk.
RETURN chicken to skillet; turn over to coat both sides of chicken with sauce. Cook 2 min. or until chicken is heated through. Sprinkle with parsley.


Substitute Prepare as directed, using PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese.
1) Jazz It Up Substitute your favorite chopped fresh herb for the parsley.
2) Substitute 4 bone-in pork chops (1 lb.) for the chicken.
3) Stir 2 Tbsp. KRAFT 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese or 2 tsp. GREY POUPON Dijon Mustard into cream cheese sauce before the final 2-min. simmer time.
4)Prepare recipe as directed. Transfer chicken to serving platter; top with 1 cup baby spinach leaves. Drizzle with sauce; sprinkle with 2 slices cooked and crumbled OSCAR MAYER Bacon.
5)Prepare recipe as directed. Transfer chicken to serving platter; top with 1 cup quartered cherry tomatoes. Drizzle with sauce; sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil.

Note: If possible, use a large skillet with sloping sides when preparing this recipe. Not only does this allow you to easily turn the chicken pieces but the larger surface area speeds up the evaporation of the cooking liquids which, in turn, allows the chicken to brown more quickly.

Check out this video for further instructions: This recipe is from the Kraft Kitchens.

This is what is for dinner tonight! Yummmmm...