Monday, October 31, 2011

My First Deer!

Pin It        Growing up, I've always been around hunting and guns.  My dad taught my sister and I how to target and trap shoot and we both went through hunters safety as soon as we turned 12, but I'd never really had the urge to go out and actually shoot a deer until this fall.  My opportunity came a few weekends ago when I got to spend the weekend with my dad deer hunting.

It was the best weekend I've had in a long time and to top it all off... I shot my first doe!

       It was quite the experience let me tell you: learning to gut, skin, and package my doe, trying bear steak and limburger cheese for the first time, and even getting initiated into the "Killers Club."  The best part of all?  Free (sort of), local, and sustainable protein to fill my freezer with.  I love venison!  It is so easy, lean, and versatile.
       My choice last night: Eggplant Casserole.  My inspiration for this came from a recipe for eggplant lasagna my mom had recently sent me.  Like usual, I started with a recipe and ended up adapting it so much that the end result turns out to be something totally different, hence the name change to Eggplant Casserole.  In any case, my creation turned out delicious!  I couldn't help, but to have two servings in one sitting.  Haha whoops.  As delicious as it was however, there is always room for improvement, so let me know of any changes or adaptations you use.


1 Medium eggplant
1 lb. Ground venison (I didn't have ground, so I just used small cut cubed venison)
1 tbsp Olive oil
1/2 cup Onion, chopped
2 cloves Garlic, minced
1/2 Medium green pepper, diced
1/2 cup Mushrooms, sliced
1 tbsp Italian seasoning
10 oz. Frozen spinach
1 1/2 cup Tomato sauce (I used Light Smart Prego spaghetti sauce)
1/2 cup Low fat ricotta
1/2 cup Fat free cottage cheese
1 Large egg

1. Preheat oven to 425 F.
2. Wash and slice eggplant into 1/2 inch slices.
3. Place slices on a greased cookie sheet and bake for 5 minutes on each side.
4. Once the eggplant is done turn the oven down to 375 F.
5. While eggplant is baking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
6. Brown the venison, onion, and garlic in the oil for roughly 5 minutes.
7. Add in the pepper, mushrooms, spinach, and seasoning and simmer for another 5-10 minutes.
8. Stir in the tomato sauce.
9. In a small bowl mix together the ricotta, cottage cheese, and egg.
10. In a greased 9x13 inch glass casserole dish, spread half of the venison mixture on the bottom.
11. Layer half of the eggplant slices on top, followed by half of the cheese mixture.
12. Repeat each layer using up the remaining ingredients.
13. Cover dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes.
14. Remove foil and bake for another 10-15 minutes to brown the top.
15. Remove from oven and let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Note:  Next time I make this recipe I will up the amount of cheese and tomato sauce a little.

Nutrition Facts
** Check out all that protein, vitamin A and vitamin C!!**
Calories: 195
Total Fat: 5.9 g
     Sat. Fat: 1.7 g
     Poly. Fat: 0.3 g
     Mono. Fat: 1.6 g
Cholesterol: 95.8 mg
Sodium: 376.3 mg
Potassium: 71.5 mg
Total Carbs: 13.8 g
     Dietary Fiber: 2.5 g
     Sugars: 5.7 g
Protein: 23.6 g
Vitamin A: 25.8%
Vitamin C: 31.8%
Calcium: 8.1%
Iron: 4.6%

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My Favorite College Student Lunch

Pin It Living on a budget and eating healthy is not as hard as most people think.  You don't have to buy everything "organic" to be healthy.  All it takes is a little education and some deal searching. :)  I'm always looking for what fruits and vegetables are in season because they tend to be the cheapest.  Talking to your local produce guy/gal is also helpful.  The other day while at the grocery store I wound up having a good conversation with the old produce guy about new fun ways to enjoy salads.  He also pointed out to me that the collard, mustard, and turnip greens were on sale for $0.67.  $0.67! It doesn't get much better than that! Haha.  One of my favorite meals to quickly whip up is a veggie egg scramble.  It takes almost no time at all and its super easy.  Plus, you can customize to to your own tastebuds and nutritional needs very easily.  Lately, I have been really into onions and salsa.  Yum.  Sorry everyone, but no picture here... to be honest the end result does not look very appetizing.  Not to worry though it definitely makes up for its looks in taste!

2 eggs
1/8 -1/4 cup Lowfat cottage cheese
The possibilities are endless!

1. Chop up the vegetables of your choosing (whatever size you like best).
2. Spray or add a little olive oil to a pan.
3. Cook veggies over medium heat until tender.
4. In a small bowl onthe side beat the eggs and cottage cheese together.
5. Once the veggies are done pour them into the bowl with the egg.
6. Respray the pan with cooking spray and then pour the egg mixture into the pan and reduce the heat to medium low. 
7. Occasionally stirring and scraping the bottom of the pan, cook until the eggs are no longer runny.
8. Pour egg scramble into a bowl and top with salsa.
9. Dig in!

Nutrition Fats:
(Made with 2 large eggs, 1/8 cup lowfat cottage cheese, 1/2 cup chopped onion, 1 cup frozen spinach, and 1/4 cup salsa)
Calories: 242
Total Fat: 8.6 g
     Sat. Fat: 2.3 g
Cholesterol: 342.5 mg
Sodium: 830.5 mg (This is pretty high due to my obsession with salsa...)
Potassium: 417.8 mg
Total Carbs: 15.8 g
     Dietary Fiber: 4.5 g
     Sugars: 9.5 g
Protein: 18 g
Vitamin A: 75%
Vitamin C: 12%
Calcium: 16%
Iron: 13%

One of my Favorite Fall Foods: Pumpkin!

Pin It I know I know I have really been slacking on keeping up my blog, but we all know how busy life gets sometimes and yes I know how lame of an excuse that it... But here I am again!  Today I am going to share with you a super easy fall recipe that all your friends will love.  According to one of my roommates these are the second best thing I have ever made for her. Haha.  Feel free to experiment with these a little and let me know how it turns out! I am always looking for ways to improve my recipes. :)

Inspired By: ChocolateCoveredKatie

1/2 cup White whole wheat flour
3 tbsp Brown sugar
2 packets Stevia (Or any other sweetener of your choice)
1/2 tbsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
1/2 tsp Baking powder
1/4 tsp Baking soda
1/8 tsp Salt
1 Egg
1/2 cup Pumpkin
2 tbsp Milk
2 tbsp Olive oil
1 tsp Vanilla


3 oz Fat free cream cheese
1 tbsp Lite syrup
1/2 packet Stevia

1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
2. Mix together all the dry ingredients.
3. Add in the rest of the ingredients except for the frosting ingredients. 
4. Grease a 9x9 pan and pour batter in. 
5. Bake for 20 minutes  or until toothpick comes out clean.
6. Let cool completely and in the mean time mix together all the frosting ingredients.
7. Spread the frosting over the top and enjoy!
Makes 16 bars.

Nutrition Facts
Calories: 53
Total Fat: 2 g
     Sat. Fat: 0.3 g
     Poly. Fat: 0.2 g
     Mono. Fat: 1.2 g
Cholesterol: 14.4 mg
Sodium: 76.3 mg
Potassium: 24.2 mg
Total Carb: 4.5 g
     Dietary Fiber: 0.9 g
     Sugars: 0.9 g
Protein: 1.8 g
Vitamin A: 7%
Vitamin C: 0.3%
Calcium: 4.6%
Iron: 2%
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