Fancy Fish Sticks

It was over a year ago that I wrote a blog on my sons’ eating habits and their preferences for frozen fish sticks. While their food preferences continue to develop and change, I have this recipe at the ready for a night when the boys want to join me in the kitchen and make homemade fish sticks.


  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise with olive or canola oil
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon Creole mustard
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning
  • Cooking spray (I like to use canola oil spray)
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons creamy mustard blend (such as Dijonnaise)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 2 large egg whites
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle chile pepper
  • 1 pound halibut or other lean white fish fillets (such as cod or pollack), cut into 4 x 1-inch pieces (about 12 pieces)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 lime wedges


  1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Cover and chill.
  2. Preheat oven to 425°.
  3. Coat a baking sheet with cooking spray, and spread evenly with oil; heat in oven 12 minutes.
  4. Combine flour and black pepper in a shallow dish. Combine 1/2 cup chicken stock, mustard blend, lime juice, egg whites, and egg in a shallow dish; stir with a whisk until foamy. Place panko, cumin, and chipotle pepper in a food processor; pulse 20 times or until coarse crumbs form. Place panko mixture in a shallow dish.
  5. Sprinkle fish evenly with salt. Working with one piece at a time, dredge fish in flour mixture. Dip in egg mixture, and dredge in panko mixture until completely covered.
  6. Remove preheated baking sheet from oven; place fish on pan, and return to oven. Bake at 425° for 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily with fork, turning once. Serve immediately with sauce and lime wedges.
  7. Sustainable Choice: If Pacific halibut is not available, you can use Alaskan pollack and U.S. Pacific cod as alternatives.



This recipe was adapted from Cooking Light, the original can be found here.

Summer Veggie Pasta Salad

With Summer officially arriving tomorrow we wanted to share a recipe that’s great to serve all summer long and kid-friendly. We love this recipe for both its simplicity and its taste, plus it’s a great way to get some extra veggies onto your kids’ plates! It takes about 15 minutes to make and can easily be made with the help of your little ones. Have your little assistant/s help you with washing the tomatoes, measuring the seasonings, squeezing the lemons, and even sprinkling the parmesan cheese!

Summer Veggie Pasta Salad
Serves 4 as a side dish


  • 2 cups uncooked penne
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3/8 tsp kosher salt, divided
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper, divided
  • 1 tbsp minced shallots
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1/2 cup pitted black olives, halved
  • 2 cups baby spinach
  • Parmesan cheese, optional



  1. Preheat oven to 400˚F.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain and set aside.
  3. Place tomatoes on a baking sheet pan. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil; sprinkle with salt and  black pepper. Bake at 400° for 10 minutes. Remove tomatoes from pan; let  stand 10 minutes. Cut tomatoes into halves.
  4. Combine shallots and the next 4 ingredients (through honey) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add remaining 3 tablespoons oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.
  5. Place pasta, tomato, olives, and spinach in a large bowl; toss. Drizzle juice mixture over pasta mixture; toss. Sprinkle with cheese if desired.



This recipe was adapted from Cooking Light.

Garlic Shrimp with Spaghetti Squash and Spinach

I love when I think of a recipe and it tastes as good as it tasted in my mind!!! So here is my Sunday creation from last week. I had spaghetti squash on my counter and I knew I needed to use it. I love eating it like spaghetti with sauce and parmesan but I wanted it to be more – the main sustenance of the meal. So I added shrimp, tomatoes and spinach to make this quick and healthy dish of deliciousness!! I hope you enjoy too!

Garlic Shrimp with Spaghetti Squash and Spinach
Serves 2


  • 1 medium sized spaghetti squash
  • ¾ pound deveined, uncooked shrimp with tails removed
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 5 oz. (1 package) baby spinach
  • ½ pint plum cherry tomatoes, halved
  • ¼ cup Shredded Romano Cheese


  1. Cut the spaghetti squash in half across the width.
  2. Scoop out the seeds and discard.
  3. Steam each half of the squash; face down in about 1-2 inches of water in  microwave or on the stovetop for about 5 minutes . Let cool, face up for five minutes. It should be slightly al dente. Then take a fork and scrape out the flesh so it looks like spaghetti. Put into a clean bowl.
  4. Heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a medium sauté pan over medium heat.
  5. Add the raw shrimp and flip when the bottom side becomes opaque. In the interim, use a garlic press and add the three cloves of garlic to the shrimp and butter.
  6. After flipping the shrimp, wait one minute and then add the spinach. Mix until all ingredients are combined.
  7. Add  plum cherry tomatoes to sauté pan, and let cook for one minute.
  8. Mix in the spaghetti squash and let all the veggies’ juices blend together.
  9. Divide into two bowls and sprinkle with cheese.
  10. Eat mindfully and enjoy every bite!!

Sun-Dried Tomato Polenta

The weather is certainly warming up here in NYC and we just love it! My family and I can finally spend more time outdoors and I can try new recipes perfect for Spring. When the weather warms up, I love to use herbs like fresh basil. It adds such a fresh flavor. When I was reading the Diabetes Forecast Magazine and saw their Polenta recipe, I thought that basil would be a great addition to it. So here’s an adapted recipe for a deliciously fresh Sun-Dried Tomato Polenta.

Photo Credit: ranjit via Compfight cc

Sun-Dried Tomato Polenta
Serves 4



  • 2 cups of water
  • ½ cup of coarse ground yellow polenta or cornmeal (do not use instant)
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes (not oil-packed)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tbsp of chopped basil
  • ½ tsp sea salt



  1. In a 1-quart saucepan, bring the water to a boil.  Slowly add the polenta in a thin, steady stream, whisking constantly.
  2. Continue to whisk or stir with a long-handled wooden spoon over medium heat for 10-15 minutes, until mixture looks creamy.
  3. Once mixture is creamy, remove saucepan from the heat and add the remaining ingredients (sundried-tomatoes, olive oil, shredded Parmesan cheese, chopped basil, and salt).
  4. Mix well and serve immediately.


This recipe was adapted from the Diabetes Forecast Magazine.

Chipotle Pork Tenderloin

I love trying new recipes, especially if I have my family join in on the cooking with me. Not only is it a great opportunity to bond with each other, but it also allows us the chance to sit down and enjoy a tasty, homemade meal. Just last night we made this delicious pork tenderloin adapted from a recipe in Miraval’s Sweet and Savory Cooking Cookbook.

Pork Tenderloin
Serves 4


-Cooking spray, olive or canola oil
-1 pork loin roast, one-pound
-1/4 tsp kosher salt
-1/4 tsp black pepper
-1/2 cup chipotle sauce (see additional recipe below)


1. Heat oven to 400˚F. Lightly coat a medium saute pan with cooking spray and heat over medium-high temperature.
2. Season the pork with salt, pepper, and seasonings of choice. Add to the heated pan and sear for 1-2 minutes per side.
3. Place the pan in the oven and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Allow pork to rest for 3-4 minutes and cut into slices.
4. Plate and top with chipotle sauce (see additional recipe below)

Chipotle Sauce


-1/4 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
-1/2 cup onions, finely chopped
-1/4 cup dried apricots, finely chopped
-11/tsp fresh garlic, minced
-2 tsp dried ginger, minced
3/4 cup ketchup
1/cup apple cider vinegar
-2 tbsp soy sauce
-1/2 cup brown sugar
-1 tbsp dry mustard
-2 chipotle peppers (canned in adobo sauce)
-1/4 cup orange juice
-6 oz lager-style beer


1. Heat oil in a saute pan. Add onions, apricots, garlic and ginger. Saute for 2 minutes, or until onions appear translucent.
2. Add the ketchup, vinegar, soy sauce, brown sugar, mustard, chili sauce, chipotle peppers, orange juice and beer.
3. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and allow to cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Serve over top of pork tenderloin (see above).

This recipe was adapted from Miraval’s Sweet and Savory Cooking Cookbook, more information on this book can be found here.

Likable Lunches: Citibabes' Style

Need nutritious ideas for likable lunches? Here are some flavor favorites you can add to your child’s springtime lunch box: remember exposure to new flavors and textures are key to increasing your child’s nutritional repertoire.

If you have a picky eater, introduce one new flavor with other favorite lunch foods.

* Whole-wheat wrap with thinly sliced fresh roast beef with thin layer of olive tapenade and an apple.

* Sushi bowl: Rice in a bowl with edamame, baked terrakyi tofu cubes, fresh corn and side of pickled ginger or cucumber slices.

* Whole grain sandwich with Cheddar, hummus, grilled red peppers, spring lettuce on whole grain bread with side of mini heirloom tomatoes.


To read more on likable lunches head over to Citibabes to read the rest of Laura’s article by clicking here.