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Welcome to Tweaked at Chez Jan de la Dayton....translated to 'tweaked at Jan's house in Dayton'! Sounds fancy, but it's not. If you choose to share a recipe, be kind and give me kudos for it. The pictures are NOT to be taken off this blog unless used in a direct link to this blog. Once upon a time I was a Weight Watchers leader....that chapter is closed. But I still like to eat and bake and don't like the weight that finds its way to me too easily. So I go find delicious-sounding recipes and tweak them. Some recipes, however, just don't turn out right if they're tweaked. I've not posted anything....so far.....that isn't WW friendly. That might change, and I'll warn you if I post something with 'scary' P+ values. For those who don't use substitutions, the ratio for Splenda granulated/sugar is 1:1 and the ratio for egg substitute/eggs is 1/4 cup of egg sub = 1 egg. Now.....let's have some fun in the kitchen!!!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Hasselback Zucchini

You've heard of Hasselback Potatoes? Well, I came across this recipe on Eating Well.....and did NOT change it one bit! It was just that good 'sounding'....and ended up tasting amazing! I bought the zucchini when I bought the box of tomatoes.....but only got 6 zukes! I'll probably make zoodles with the other 2.  This is really good and would be a fun/sneaky way to get the kids to eat their veggies!

Makes 4 Servings

1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp garlic powder
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground pepper
4 small zucchini
Very thinly sliced Parmesan cheese

Please see the end for cooking instructions!!!!

Combine all but the zucchini and cheese in a small bowl.

Cut the ends off each of the zucchini. Make crosswise cuts every ½ inch along the length of each zucchini, slicing ALMOST to the bottom, but making sure you don't cut all the way through. Place on a double layer of aluminum foil if doing on the grill or in an 8” square baking dish lined with aluminum foil.

Gently separate the cuts and put a thin slice of cheese in each cut.

Brush the olive oil mixture over the top of each zucchini.

If you do this on the grill, place the zukes in the foil on the grill at medium – high heat for @15 minutes. If you do this in the oven, preheat the oven to 425°. Place a layer of aluminum foil in an 8” square baking dish and bake @25 – 30 minutes.

Loving Life!

Cuke & Tomato Salad

If you ever get the opportunity to go to an Olive Oil store/company, do yourself a favor and GO!!! We went to one in Blue Ridge and then another one in Dahlonega (both in GA for those who aren't familiar with those towns). I seriously could spend hours in there sampling and tons of money. I bought small bottles of several oils and vinegars and am now wishing I bought the large of the two in particular that I used in this recipe.  They are the Tuscan Herb Infused Olive Oil and the Traditional Balsamic Vinegar. These two combined are just about good enough to drink! They're the first two we sampled in the Blue Ridge Olive Oil Company, also their biggest sellers and most popular 'pairing'.   Anyway......I did another variation on a tomato/cucumber salad, but with the really good oil and vinegar, this one tops it! Go get some good stuff and make this! You will NOT be sorry! (PS - If anyone local to me does a 'road trip' to Blue Ridge, let me know if you need some company!)
Makes A Lot

3 tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
2 cucumbers, peeled and sliced*
½ onion, sliced thin*
Cracked pepper to taste
½ cup olive oil*
½ cup vinegar*
½ cup water

Place all the veggies in a large bowl that has a cover.

Sprinkle pepper over the veggies. Pour the liquids over the veggies and stir.

I put the vinegar in the measuring cup and then the olive oil. Love the way the olive oil poured off first.

Refrigerate 1 – 2 hours. Stir before serving.

*MY SPIN: I not only peeled and sliced the cukes, but cored the seeds out of them. My husband isn't crazy about onions (he'll eat them, but.....) so I only used ½ of an onion, cut the half in half and then sliced thinly. You can use apple cider vinegar and regular olive oil.

Loving Life!

Best Stewed Tomatoes Ever

Seriously. WHAT was I thinking when I bought a box of tomatoes??? I must have been out of my mind!!!!  But....we love stewed tomatoes and thought I'd make them all into stewed tomatoes, leaving a few out for a delicious tomato/onion/cucumber salad. Well, after using THIRTY tomatoes, tossing a few out in the yard that were funky-ish, I still have 20 tomatoes left. Tomato soup might be my next adventure. On a positive note, these ARE the best stewed tomatoes I've ever made. Can't wait to have some with dinner tonight! I didn't even think to take pics of all the ingredients, but this was truly a 'winged' recipe! 
Makes 5 Quart Bags and a Little Extra

30 tomatoes
1 TBSP salt
2 TBSP sugar
1 TBSP Italian seasoning
½ of a large green bell pepper, diced
½ of a medium onion, diced
In a large pot of boiling water, plunge the tomatoes in for @30 seconds; remove to an ice bath. (I did this in 2 large stock pots....10 tomatoes at a time)
Peel the tomatoes and discard the skins. Cut the tomatoes to the size you want.
Put all the ingredients in a large stock pot, stir. Let simmer for @an hour.

Put the stewed tomatoes in quart-size freezer bags and the 'little extra' in a bowl to use now.
Freeze for future use.

MY SPIN: You could also dice some celery in these.

Loving Life!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Peach Blueberry Muffins

Well, I still had peaches and blueberries and I absolutely hate wasting food! I also had company coming in. So, at the last minute, I decided to make some muffins. These are some BIG muffins!!! I think warming them up and putting some butter on them would just be delicious with a cup of coffee.....
Makes 8 Big Muffins

3 cup all-purpose flour
½ cup Splenda granulated (or sugar)
½ cup brown sugar
1 TBSP baking powder
1 pinch of salt
3 eggs (or ¾ cup egg substitute)
1 cup reduced fat milk
½ cup melted light butter
1 cup blueberries
1 cup peaches, peeled and diced
2 tsp Splenda granulated (or sugar)
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground nutmeg
2 TBSP melted light butter

Preheat your oven to 400°. Lightly spray a muffin tin or line with paper liners.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, ½ cup Splenda granulated (or sugar), brown sugar, baking powder and salt.

In a separate bowl, mix together the eggs, milk and ½ cup of melted light butter until well combined.

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients until just blended. Fold in the peaches and then the blueberries.

Fill muffin cups. Bake for 18 – 20 minutes or until the tops spring back when touched lightly.

OPTIONAL TOPPING: Mix together the Splenda granulated (or sugar), cinnamon and nutmeg. Brush muffins with the 2 TBSP melted light butter. Sprinkle with the cinnamon mixture.

Cool in the pan on a wire rack.

MY SPIN: I didn't make the topping even the the ingredients are in the picture.....I ran out of time since I had company coming. If you don't make the topping, I would suggest putting the cinnamon (and maybe even a heaping tsp of it) in the batter.

Loving Life!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Blueberry Sauce

Well, here's the sauce recipe I made today after the cake. I have so many blueberries!!! This is, by far, the best blueberry sauce I've ever tasted and is super-simple to make. I actually doubled this recipe because we have company coming and I want to use this as an alternative to maple syrup on pancakes. It would also be really tasty on a good vanilla bean ice cream or cheesecake (mouth watering yet?). Or.....just by the spoonful...it's just that good!
Makes A Lot!!!

2 cups fresh blueberries
½ cup water
½ cup Splenda granulated (or sugar)
2 TBSP lemon juice
2 TBSP cornstarch mixed with 2 TBSP cold water
½ tsp vanilla
zest of 1 lemon (optional)

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the blueberries, water, sugar, lemon juice and vanilla. Stir frequently and bring to a low boil.

In a small bowl, combine the cornstarch with 2 TBSP cold water.

Slowly stir the cornstarch into the blueberries. Do this gently so you don't break the blueberries. Simmer until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a metal spoon.

Remove from heat and gently stir in the lemon zest (optional).

Put in a bowl/container. Store in the refrigerator.

MY SPIN: This will keep in the fridge @ a week or so. To use, I would put it in a microwavable bowl/container to get it 'saucy'. Personally, I would probably just dip a spoon in it and eat it.....it's just that good!!!


Loving Life.

Blueberry Oatmeal Crumb Cake

I do it every year!!! I buy tons of a fruit and then have to scramble to figure out what to do with it, besides just eat a handful! This year is no exception. I bought a gallon (!!!) of blueberries from Tidwell's yesterday. They are so sweet! THE best blueberries I've ever tasted! But I still had to figure out what to do with them! This is one recipe I made. I also made Blueberry Sauce (which I'm also going to be sharing in another post). I'm going to freeze a bunch. I have some set aside to make blueberry pancakes. And, of course, some to just munch on. This little cake.....I made it in my Mom's old Corningware. The memories of all the good things she made in her Corningware ..... how I wish I had her old recipes as well as her Corningware!! But this is a very easy cake that can be served as a dessert or like a coffee cake for breakfast. Any way, any time you make it, it's good!
Makes 9 Servings

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
¾ cup instant or rolled oats
½ cup Splenda granulated (or sugar)
2 tsp baking powder
1 cup 1% milk
1 large egg
1 ½ cups blueberries

2 TBSP all-purpose flour
2 TBSP Splenda granulated (or sugar)
2 TBSP light butter
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 400°. Spray a 9x9” glass baking pan with cooking spray (I used the baking spray)

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, Splenda, baking powder and salt. Add the milk and egg and stir to combine.

Fold in the blueberries.

Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish.

In a small bowl, stir together the flour and sugar for the topping. Cut the butter into the mixture until it forms coarse crumbs. Drizzle in the vanilla and stir to combine. Sprinkle over the top of the cake batter**.

Bake 30 – 35 minutes until the top is golden and the cake is cooked through. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes before cutting.

MY SPIN: **Before putting in the oven, I sprinkled the top with cinnamon. My crumbs never come out like crumbs, but the topping sure tasted good! This can be served 'as is' or with some fat-free whipped topping, good vanilla bean ice cream or, for added blueberry flavor, the blueberry sauce recipe I made and will be sharing that recipe as well.


Loving Life.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Peach Banana Choco-Chip Bread

Well, I really needed some Kitchen Therapy the past few days. I not only made this but messed around with my Essential Oils as well (NOT for ingestion tho....made a lovely linen spray). This is a pretty darn good recipe. Yummy peaches from GA.....and I almost always have bananas that are a tad too ripe to just peel and eat. And then I remembered I had some chocolate chips. I only put a little in the bread, but I wanted to put tons in! I promise this is a recipe you'll enjoy.....maybe even with a little butter 'smooshed' on it.

Makes 10 Servings

1 cup Splenda granulated (or sugar)
2 cups all purpose flour
1 stick of light butter at room temperature
2 large eggs (or ½ cup egg substitute)
2 ripe bananas
2 ripe peaches (both pealed and pitted; 1 sliced)**
1 TBSP brown sugar**
1 TBSP 1% milk
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
¼ cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°. Spray a 9x5x3” loaf pan, set aside.

Don't forget to spray inside your dishwasher so you don't have to clean up the overspray!
In a large mixing bowl, cream together the butter and Splenda (or sugar). Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

In a blender, blend the bananas and 1 peach (not the sliced one) together with a little bit of the milk. Mix in the remainder of the milk and the cinnamon.

In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add the banana mixture to the butter mixture until well combined. Add the dry ingredients until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.

In the loaf pan, lay out the sliced peaches and sprinkle with the brown sugar. Pour batter over this. Bake 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Set on a wire rack to cool for 15 minutes. Remove bread from the pan and invert onto a cake/loaf plate and cool completely before slicing.

The bottom of the bread

**MY SPIN: The peaches and brown sugar on the bottom were an afterthought, as well as the chocolate chips. When I turned the loaf out of the pan, some of the sliced peaches stayed in the pan so I had a little puzzle to put together before inverting onto the cake plate. But it was worth it because it gave some added flavor and moisture to the bottom of the bread. I think if I make this again, I'll put some of the batter in the pan and then put the sliced peaches and brown sugar and then the rest of the batter. And, of course, I'm never 'careful' when measuring cinnamon....more is better in my world! Whichever way you do it, it's good!

Loving Life!