Recipes: Barley and Asparagus Risotto; Ham, Cheese and Egg Crepes, Lemon Chicken and Snowpea Stirfry

  • Updated: April 17, 2013 - 2:27 PM
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Credit: Meredith Deeds • Special to the Star Tribune Ham and egg crepes

LEMON CHICKEN AND SNOW PEA STIR-FRY OVER CRISPY NOODLES √

Serves 4.

Note: An alternative to crispy noodles is the more traditional steamed rice.

• 10 oz. angel hair pasta

• 1 1/2 tsp. dark sesame oil

• 3 tsp. vegetable oil, divided

1 lb. chicken tenders or chicken breasts, cut into 1-in. pieces

• 8 oz. sliced mushrooms

• 2 garlic cloves, minced

2 c. snow peas, trimmed and sliced in half diagonally

1/2 c. low-sodium chicken broth

• 1 to 2 tbsp. dry sherry

• 2 tsp. sugar

• 1 tsp. grated lemon peel

• 3 tbsp. lemon juice

• 2 tsp. cornstarch

• 1/4 tsp. salt

Directions

Preheat broiler. Cook pasta according to package directions. Rinse with cold water and drain well.

Combine pasta, sesame oil and 1 teaspoon vegetable oil in a large bowl; toss well to coat. Divide noodle mixture evenly into 4 (1-inch-thick) nests on a large baking sheet. Place baking sheet on oven rack 6 inches from heat; broil 4 to 6 minutes or until lightly browned. Carefully turn nests over, and broil 4 minutes to brown the other side. Set aside.

Heat remaining vegetable oil in large wok or skillet over high heat. Add chicken; cook and stir 4 to 5 minutes or until chicken is browned and no longer pink in center. Remove from pan. Add mushrooms and sauté for 2 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the snow peas and continue to cook for another minute or until vegetables are crispy tender. Add the chicken broth, sherry, sugar and lemon peel; cook and stir 1 minute more.

Combine lemon juice, cornstarch and salt in small bowl; stir until smooth. Add the chicken back to the pan. Pour cornstarch mixture over chicken; cook, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes or until the sauce is slightly thickened.

Spoon chicken and vegetables over nests and serve immediately.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 555 Fat 11 g Sodium 510 mg

Carbohydrates 71 g Saturated fat 2 g Calcium 48 mg

Protein 41 g Cholesterol 70 mg Dietary fiber 5 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 vegetable, 4 bread/starch, 3½ lean meat, ½ fat.

BARLEY AND ASPARAGUS RISOTTO √

Serves 4.

Note: This makes a great one-pan vegetarian main dish or a hearty side. Look for barley in the rice, beans or bulk aisle of your grocery store.

• 1 tbsp. olive oil

• 1/3 c. finely chopped onion

• 1 garlic clove, minced

• 1 c. pearl barley

• 1/4 c. white wine

• 3 c. vegetable stock, divided

2 c. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-in. pieces

1/4 c., plus 2 tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese

• 1/4 c. toasted, sliced almonds

Directions

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes or until slightly softened. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Add the barley and cook for 3 minutes until lightly toasted.

Add white wine and cook, stirring, until wine has evaporated. Add 2 1/2 cups of the stock and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add the asparagus, 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese and remaining broth if needed. Simmer, covered, for an additional 5 minutes or until barley and asparagus are tender.

Divide among 4 serving plates and garnish with the remaining Parmesan cheese and almonds.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 325 Fat 10 g Sodium 285 mg

Carbohydrates 48 g Saturated fat 3 g Calcium 185 mg

Protein 12 g Cholesterol 7 mg Dietary fiber 10 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 3 bread/starch, 2 fat.

HAM, CHEESE AND EGG CRÊpes √

Serves 6.

Note: This recipe makes 12 crêpes. Since only 6 are used, reserve the rest for another use. After crêpes have cooled, stack and store them in sealable plastic bags in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to two months.

• 2 tbsp. unsalted butter, divided

• 1 1/2 c. skim milk

• 7 eggs, divided

• 1 1/4 c. flour

• Cooking spray

• 1/4 tsp. salt

• 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper

• 6 thin slices lean deli ham

3/4 c. shredded Swiss cheese (preferably Gruyère)

Directions

Melt 1 tablespoon of the butter and combine with milk and 1 egg in a blender. Pulse to combine. Add flour and pulse again until almost smooth. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Coat an 8-inch nonstick skillet with cooking spray; place over medium-high heat until hot. Remove pan from heat. Pour a scant 1/4 cup batter into pan; quickly tilt pan in all directions so batter covers pan with a thin film. Cook about 1 minute.

Carefully lift edge of crêpe with a spatula to test for doneness (crêpe is ready to turn when it can be shaken loose from the pan and the underside is lightly browned). Turn crêpe over; cook 30 seconds on other side.

Place crêpe on a plate; allow to cool. Repeat procedure until all of the batter is used. Stack crêpes between single layers of wax paper to prevent sticking.

Use a kitchen towel to wipe clean the skillet, put the heat on medium and add half of the remaining tablespoon of butter. When the butter is foamy, carefully crack 3 eggs into skillet, and season lightly with the salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover and cook until the whites are firm, 2 to 2 1/2 minutes. Remove to a warm plate and repeat with remaining butter and eggs.

Heat another large nonstick pan over medium heat. Place a crêpe in the pan. Place 1 slice of ham in the middle of crêpe and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons cheese. Cook for about 30 seconds, or until ham is heated through. Place egg on top of the ham and fold the edges of the crêpe up on each side to form a square. Serve warm.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 250 Fat 15 g

Sodium 395 mg Carbs 12 g

Saturated fat 6 g Calcium 205 mg

Protein 16 g Chol 235 mg

Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 bread/starch, 2 medium-fat meat, 1 fat.

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