Game Day Strategy: Fiber Before Four

Is anyone giving any thought about what they’ll eat BEFORE the big game tomorrow?! After all, most Super Bowl parties don’t begin until 4 pm, and by that time, most of us “should” have eaten breakfast and lunch.

 No skipping, either. You may “think” avoiding breakfast and lunch will save calories overall, but meal-skippers usually end up eating too many calories. Why? You’re famished, starving, and ravenous when 4 pm rolls around….and end up stuffing yourself, eating far more than if you had been fueled.

So my suggestion is to “Fiber up before Four!”  Four p.m. that is. Fiber-filled foods create a feeling of fullness and satisfaction for a longer period of time after eating. Great for keeping hunger pangs at bay prior to the big party.

 Consider Apple Pecan Oven Pancake or Better Bran Muffins. Both are filled with hearty whole-grains and lots of satisfying fiber. You’ll probably have leftovers – perfect for a hectic Monday morning!

Apple Pecan Oven-Baked Pancake

1 cup white whole wheat flour (suggest King Arthur Brand)

1 ¾ cups old-fashioned oats

1/3 cup ground flax seed

1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

2 ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon

½ teaspoon apple pie spice

3 large eggs

1 1/3 cups low-fat buttermilk

¼ cup canola oil

2 cups finely diced, peeled apples

2/3 cup finely chopped pecans

 Preheat oven to 425°F. Whisk all dry ingredients in large bowl. Whisk eggs, milk and oil together in a separate smaller bowl; stir into dry ingredients with spoon until just combined. Don’t over mix. Lightly stir in apples and pecans. Spread in 10×15-inch jelly roll pan coated with vegetable cooking spray. Bake 14 to 17 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cut into 18 squares and serve immediately.

 Serves 4 to 6 (3 to 4 squares each).

Best Bran Muffins*

1¼ cups all-purpose flour

½ cup sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

¼ teaspoon salt

2 cups dry All-Bran ® cereal (original type)

1¼ cups 1% low fat milk

1 large egg

¼ cup vegetable or canola oil

3 tablespoons unsweetened natural applesauce

Preheat oven to 400°F. Spray each cup in a standard 12-cup muffin/cupcake pan with vegetable cooking spray. Whisk flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside. In a large bowl, combine cereal and milk; let stand about 2 minutes or until cereal softens. Add egg, oil and applesauce and stir well. Add flour mixture, stirring only until all ingredients are combined. Divide batter between cups. Bake for about 18 to 20 minutes or until golden brown and toothpick comes out with only a couple crumbs. Serve warm. Makes 12 muffins.

 *Adapted from The Original All-Bran Muffin recipe from Kellogg’s.

One Big Pancake

PancakePanApple Pancake

While I definitely didn’t make time to write about it, I sure did spend a lot of time this summer cooking, grilling and baking. Highlights:

2 new Baked Bean Recipes – Chipotle Lime Baked Beans & Cocoa Spiked Baked Beans with Apple

5 new desserts, including Cherry Cobbler, Whole Grain Cinnamon Shortcakes & Strawberries, Key Lime Pie, Shortbread Cookies and Apple Nut Cake with Maple Topping

1 new Pasta Salad – Antipasto Pasta Salad

1 new Fish recipe – Grilled Marinated Salmon with Tropical Mango Salsa

1 new Breakfast recipe – Oven-Baked Pancake (3 versions)

1 Smoothie and 1 Trail/Snack Mix

Plus, I tweaked several old favorites until I got ‘em just right: Corn Lime Cilantro Sauce for Grilled Pork Tenderloin, Basil Pesto, Apple Egg Cheese Breakfast Casserole and Whole Grain Oatmeal Bars with Raisins & Dates.

 And in between whisking, whipping, stirring and tasting, I power-walked, weight trained and swam my way to staying in shape. Swimming is new and only because Jeff and I moved into a new place in late July. The pool is within walking distance, making early morning and late evening swims realistic and enjoyable.  

Let’s celebrate the arrival of fall with my newest – and third – version of this Oven Baked Pancake. First version was just plain – no fruit or nuts. Then came the plethora of summer blueberries. Finally, this fall version with apples and pecans.

 It’s 100% whole grain from the white whole wheat flour, oats and flax seed and filled with lots of heart-healthy and immune-boosting nutrients from those grains plus the apples and pecans.

Serve with 100% orange juice, slices of skillet sautéed Canadian bacon or ham and a fruit salad made from any fresh, frozen and/or canned in natural juice fruits.

This oven-baked pancake is easy, fast and best of all, tasty.

 

Apple Pecan Oven-Baked Pancake                                                

 Ingredients

 1 cup white whole wheat flour (suggest King Arthur Brand)

1 ¾ cups old-fashioned oats

1/3 cup ground flax seed

1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

2 ½ teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon Saigon cinnamon

½ teaspoon apple pie spice

3 large eggs

1 1/3 cups low-fat buttermilk

¼ cup canola oil

2 cups finely diced, peeled apples

2/3 cup finely chopped pecans

 Directions

 Preheat oven to 425°F.

  1. Whisk all dry ingredients in large bowl.
  2. Whisk eggs, milk and oil together in a separate smaller bowl; stir into dry ingredients with spoon until just combined. Don’t over mix.
  3. Lightly stir in apples and pecans.
  4. Spread batter in 10×15-inch jelly roll pan coated with vegetable cooking spray.
  5. Bake 13 to 15 minutes until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, but not overly dry.
  6. Cut into 18 squares and serve immediately with Maple Syrup.

 Serves 4 to 6 (3 to 4 squares each).

Blueberry Version: omit apple pie spice and add 2 cups fresh blueberries and 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest.

Plain version: omit blueberries, apples and pecans.

Create your own version: add any fruit or nut!