From chili mac to barbecued chicken, heart-healthy recipes can be simple to make and just as delicious as the high-fat, high-calorie versions. That culinary truth was apparent at the third Heart Healthy Cooking Contest.
Sponsored by the "4 Your Heart" Coalition: Toledo-Lucas County Health Department, Neighborhoods In Partnership, St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center, and the American Heart Association, the contest involved Toledo Olde Towne Community Organization Block Watch residents and all residents involved in NIP organizations.
About 18 entries - main dishes, vegetables and side dishes, and desserts that were low in fat and calories - were taken to the St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center conference room May 19. Five judges rated and scored the items on flavor, appearance, creativity, and consumer appeal.
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As one of the judges, I was impressed with creativity of the recipes, especially Richard Audiano's Chili Mac with Venison, which looked and tasted like ground beef, and Penny Martenson's low-fat cream cheese spread appetizer made with orange marmalade.
Event organizers Carole Martin, who is the TOTCO board president, Joanne Treuhaft of the health department, and Gloria Enk of St. Vincent's, quickly dished sample sizes of each item for the judges. After the judges tasted the entries and recorded the scores, others in attendance sampled the dishes; it was like a big potluck supper, except there were prizes. When the final tally was made, the winners were announced.
In the main-dish category, first place went to Debra Lobdale for Boneless Chicken Casserole; second place went to Mr. Audiano for Chili Mac with Venison, and third place went to Sarah Frieson for Barbecue Chicken.
In the side-dish category, first place went to Ms. Martenson for Cream Cheese Orange Spread; second place went to Kathy Jarret for Summer Broccoli Salad, and third place to Debra Lobdale for Poppyseed Yogurt Dressing served with a gorgeous fresh fruit platter.
In the dessert category, Dequan Brown made a delicious Yogurt Parfait; second-place finisher, Worms in the Mud, was a joint effort by Karen Kemp, Carol Winters, and Berta Richards, and third went to Victor Colbert for his Fruit Pocket. Worms in the Mud was instant pudding made with skim milk served in a dish styled like a flower pot with gummy worms and chocolate cookie crumbs.
1 8-ounce package fat-free cream cheese
1 green onion, diced
1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts or almonds
1 small jar of orange marmalade
Stir diced onion and nuts into softened cream cheese. Form into a ball, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Before serving, place in the center of a platter and cover with marmalade. Serve with low-fat crackers or veggies.
Yield: 20 servings
Source: Penny Martenson
More than 20,000 people are expected to sample pizza at the 7th Annual Miller Lite Pizza Challenge from 5 to 11:30 p.m. Friday and 4 to 11:30 p.m. Saturday at Westgate Village Shopping Center. Pizzarias vie for the coveted People's Choice Award, selected by those attending the event, and the Judges' Choice Awards for the best cheese and specialty pizza. The event benefits Toledo Opera. Admission is $6 for adults. Children under 12 are admitted free.
At home, you can make your own pizza with store-bought dough or homemade dough. The first step is rolling the crust. Lightly dust your work surface with flour or cornmeal to keep the dough from sticking. A butcher's block or cutting board is a good work surface. Then shape the dough to the size and thickness you desire.
The 20th anniversary of the Toledo chapter of Chaine des Rotisseurs was observed at Belmont Country Club May 22. Those inducted into the membership were Peter Swick, executive chef at Inverness Club; Sean McClain, food and beverage manager at the Toledo Club, and Marcel Hesseling, executive chef at the Toledo Zoo.
Roger Parker was elevated to Vice Conseiller-Culinaire de Toledo.
Clam Bakes are back in season in our area, thanks to Real Seafood Co. at the Docks. This year, the hearty dinner served with wine is followed by a dinner boat cruise aboard the Sandpiper, where dessert will be served.
The clam bakes are held at 6:30 p.m. June 22 (Mediterranean Clam Bake); July 20 (Creole Clam Bake), and Aug. 24 (Endless Summer Clam Bake). Cost is $59.95 per person plus tax and tip. Call 888-456-DINE for information or to make a reservations.53.4183 -5.65297