Indulgences/No Guilt

I don’t always eat indulgences, but there are cravings for yummy things that hit like the recent winter storm – hard and with little warning!  But I like to eat what I love in a way that doesn’t bring guilt.  How to eat  delicacies and still feel good?  Enter Cooking Light.  You’ve seen their links all over my blog because with their recipes you eat real food, but it’s just lightened up and tastes outstanding!  

I tried a recipe on Cooking Light for Chocolate Chip Cookies that are a cross between cake and cookie.  Excuse me?  That means Delicious in my book. So would they be called Cakies or Cookes?  I think I’ll go with Cakies – Chocolate Chip Cakies. To make them low-fat, they replaced some of the fat with applesauce and you don’t miss anything but the calories! These are SO good!

Cakie a

Chocolate Chip “Cakies”
Ingredients

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
Cooking spray
Cakie

Preparation

Preheat oven to 375°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl; stir well with a whisk.

Spoon applesauce into a fine sieve over a bowl; let stand 15 minutes. Discard liquid. Scrape drained applesauce into a large bowl. Add sugar and butter; beat with a mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat in vanilla and egg. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed until well-blended. Fold in chips.

Drop by level tablespoons 2 inches apart onto baking sheets coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375° for 10 minutes or until almost set. Cool on pan 2 to 3 minutes or until firm. Remove cookies from pan; cool on wire racks.

Now for my next low-fat cooking test…I’ve been playing around with Oven-fried Onion rings, trying to find the perfect combination of crunch and flavor.  It’s a little tricky to do when you’re not deep frying.  My old recipe, which will always be my favorite onion ring on a day when I want to splurge, requires oil and deep oil at that, so in order to live without clogging up my arteries, I thought an oven-fried method would be better!  This recipe was found on Food Network’s sight on the Sandwich King’s recipes.  The mix of flour and Panko breadcrumbs give it the perfect crunch with a fraction of the oil!  

onion rings

These little guys had to be husband-worthy, because they were part of his Birthday dinner!  It would be safe to say, he LOVED them!  I had a few…he had the rest.  End of story!  Here’s the recipe…

Oven Fried Onion Rings

Ingredients
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
4 teaspoons kosher salt
2 cups buttermilk
4 eggs
3 cups panko breadcrumbs
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 large yellow sweet onions, such as Maui, sliced 1/4-to-1/2-inch thick

Directions

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Place parchment paper onto 2 baking sheets and set aside.

In a small bowl, combine the flour, paprika and 2 teaspoons salt. In another bowl or shallow dish, whisk together the buttermilk and eggs. Add half of the flour mixture to the buttermilk and beat until smooth and thickened.

In a separate bowl, combine the panko, olive oil and remaining 2 teaspoons salt.

Lightly dredge the onion rings in the flour mixture and then drop into the buttermilk. Drain the excess batter and then dredge in the panko mixture.

Oven Onion rings.jpg

Arrange on the prepared baking sheets in a single layer. You can place smaller rings inside bigger rings if necessary, just make sure there is space between them. Then place in the oven. Cook until golden brown, 14 to 20 minutes. Halfway through the cooking time, flip over each onion ring to ensure even crisping and browning.

Recipe courtesy of Jeff Mauro

I feel for people who settle for substitutes for real food when they want to cut back.  There’s no need to do that when there are recipes this good!  I hope you’ll try a Chocolate Chip Cakie or an Oven-Fried Onion Ring!

What do you do to enjoy your favorite foods without the guilt?

With love from my country kitchen,

  P.S. Don’t forget to enter a picture on Facebook or Instagram today for #Monday Marriage Matters, then check back tomorrow for a post about my favorite photo(s)!

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