Friday recipes: comfort food

January 20, 2012 —

Winter is a great time for comfort food. But that doesn’t have to mean the heavy, fat-filled stuff you’ll regret eating when it’s time to put your swimsuit on. Think of comfort dishes instead as body-and-soul-nourishing recipes full of flavor, nutrition and tastebud delights. I especially like these recipes, provided by DMU Wellness Director Joy Schiller, M.S., CHES: The soup provides multiple servings as a great treat on cold winter days, and the biscotti are a guilt-free indulgence with my morning coffee.

Southwestern chicken soup

Soup is an ideal winter comfort food.

  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup frozen chopped onion
  • 2 teaspoons bottled minced garlic
  • 2 cups chopped cooked chicken breast
  • 16-oz. can pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 14-oz. can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
  • 8 3/4-oz. can whole-kernel corn, undrained
  • 4.5-oz. can chopped green chilies, undrained
  • 1/2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 6 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream (optional)

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; saute 2-3 minutes.

Add chicken and the next seven ingredients. Bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls; top with sour cream if desired.

Nutritional information per serving, about 1 1/2 cups soup and 1 tablespoon sour cream: calories, 211; fat, 5.2 g; saturated fat, 1.8 g; protein, 20.7 g; carbohydrates, 20.1 g; fiber, 4.6 g; cholesterol, 47 mg; iron, 2 mg; sodium, 582 mg; calcium, 67 mg


Almond biscotti

  • 1/4 cup finely chopped slivered almonds
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons margarine
  • 4 egg whites, lightly beaten
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place almonds on a small baking pan. Bake 7-8 minutes or until golden brown, watching them carefully so they don’t burn. Set aside.

Beat sugar and margarine in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add egg whites and almond extract; mix well. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in large bowl; mix well. Stir egg mixture and almonds into flour mixture until well blended.

Spray two 9″x5″ loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray. Evenly divide dough between prepared pans; spread dough evenly onto bottoms of pans with wet fingertips. Bake 15 minutes or until knife inserted in centers comes out clean. Remove from oven; turn out onto cutting board.

As soon as loaves are cool enough to handle, cut each loaf into 16 1/2-inch-thick slices. Place slices, cut sides down, on baking sheet covered with parchment paper or sprayed with cooking spray. Bake 5 minutes; turn over. Bake 5 minutes more or until golden brown. Serve warm or cool completely. Store in airtight container.

Nutritional information per biscotti: calories, 56; total fat, 1 g; saturated fat, <1 g; carbohydrates, 9 g; sodium, 53 mg; protein, 1 g; fiber, <1 g

Endlessly curious and easily entertained, Barb Dietrich Boose loves being a member of the friendly, fascinating DMU community and its creative communications team. The University's publications director and DMU Magazine editor, Barb is always on the hunt for story ideas, good books and new recipes to try out on her family, such as her surprisingly tasty pork-and-bean bars.