Thursday, March 14, 2013

Make Paula Deen's New Light Recipes

After celebrity chef Paula Deen demonstrated some of her new healthy recipes earlier this week, I wanted to try some out for myself - they looked so good! Paula helped Florida Hospital kick off its new "Healthy 100 Approved Menu Items" program on Monday. Partnering with the hospital's dietitians, 16 Orlando-area restaurants and food trucks now feature special Healthy 100 appetizers, entrees, side dishes and desserts.

Paula's new, lighter recipes for diabetics and, really, anyone trying to eat healthy are available on the Diabetes in  New Light web site: All of the recipes on the site - including Vegetarian Gumbo, Lady and Sons Lasagna, and Strawberry Cream Cheese French Toast - look delicious. Here is a one of Paula's recipes that is easy to make. I love Spinach Artichoke Dip, but am always worried about fat content, so this is a great alternative:

Hot Spinach-Artichoke Dip In a New Light


1 10-ounce package frozen, chopped spinach
1/4 c. shredded, reduced-fat pepper jack cheese
1 c. freshly grated imported Parmesan cheese
2 14-ounce cans artichoke hearts packed in water, rinsed and drained
1/2 c. light mayo
1/2 c. fat-free ricotta cheese
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice 
1/4 tsp.ground red pepper
Vegetable dippers, such as strips of bell pepper, carrot sticks, celery sticks or endive spears or whole-wheat bagel or pita chips.


Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray a 1-quart baking dish with nonstick spray. 

Microwave the spinach according to package directions. Drain, let cool, and then squeeze dry. Transfer spinach to a large bowl. To make the topping, combine the pepper jack cheese and 2 Tbsp. of the Parmesan cheese in a small bowl until blended.

Pulse the artichoke hearts in a food processor until smooth. Transfer the artichokes to the bowl with the spinach. Stir the remaining Parmesan, mayo, ricotta, lemon juice, and ground red pepper until well mixed. Scrape into the prepared dish. Sprinkle evenly with the topping.

Bake, uncovered, until the filling is hot and the cheese is melted, about 30 minutes. Serve with the vegetable dippers.

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