Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese

Today’s recipe for Healthy Pan Bagnat Grilled Cheese is one of my absolute favorites. Have you ever tried a Pan Bagnat? The name for this sandwich (pronounced pɑ̃ baˈɲa) originates from Nice, France. It consists of ingredients in a Salade Niçoise, including canned tuna, olives, anchovies, tomatoes, onions and hard-boiled eggs. I tweaked my recipe to create a healthy grilled cheese, while still using most of the traditional ingredients.

This sandwich recipe is one of my favorites in the “light and healthy” chapter of my cookbook 150 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches.  Place your tuna in a mixing bowl and add fresh lemon juice, vinegar, olive oil and pepper. These ingredients give it a nice, light flavor. Top the bread with fresh tomatoes and spinach leaves and some freshly grated Parmesan. Then, place in a Panini grill or large skillet to get it a little warm and toasted, and it’s fantastic!

In my cookbook, you will find grilled cheese recipes for appetizers, breakfasts, main dishes, lunch ideas, desserts and more. There is definitely options for everyone. If you’re trying to eat healthier these days, I have fifteen other recipes in this chapter with low-fat, low-carb and gluten-free options. You’ll also find low-fat and recipe lightening tips, grilled cheese making tips, sandwich timesavers and more.

 

Quinoa Tabbouleh Wraps

If you like tabbouleh, you’ll be a fan of these Quinoa Tabbouleh Wraps. Quinoa (KEEN-wah) is a tiny grain, often called “super grain” because it’s rich in so many nutrients, particular protein and all nine essential amino acids. The most common color of quinoa is white, which is what I used in this recipe. If you’re looking for other options, red quinoa has a richer taste. Black quinoa has an early flavor. Rainbow quinoa is a mixture of red, white and black.

Usually tabbouleh seems time consuming to prepare, but this recipe only takes 35 minutes from start to finish. Start with cooked quinoa and add tomatoes, cucumber, bell peppers, fresh parsley, green onions,  fresh lemon juice, good olive oil, black pepper and stir. It is that easy. This recipe is perfect for a healthy lunch or light dinner. It can also be completely gluten-free, using gluten-free tortilla wraps.

Feel free to half this recipe if you only are serving two people. If you make the entire recipe, the quinoa mixture is great as a healthy side. I like to eat one wrap and spoon the rest over mixed greens. Enjoy and have a great rest of your week! Alison

Excerpted from 400 Best Sandwich Recipes by Alison Lewis © 2012 Robert Rose Inc. www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved: Not to be reprinted without publisher permission.

 

Tuna Checkerboard Sandwiches

With kids at home right now, I wanted to share a twist on the basic tuna sandwich. Make it fun by mixing and matching different types of bread to jazz up the kids’ sandwiches. These Tuna Checkerboard Sandwiches are my healthier version using fresh lemon juice and white wine vinegar instead of mayonnaise. I also add freshly chopped basil or dill to mine if you have that at home or in your garden. This recipe is light, flavorful and a great new way to get the kids to eat more tuna. Let me know how your kids like it. Stay well!

This recipe is in my first internationally published cookbook, “400 Best Sandwiches: From Classics & Burgers to Wraps & Condiments” published by Robert Rose, Inc. If you’d like to purchase a copy, purchase here.

Fish Tacos with Fresh Cherry Salsa

Fish Tacos with Cherry Salsa

I have had the most incredible cherries this week Washington State, plump and so sweet. I decided to make these Fish Tacos with Cherry Salsa, which were a huge hit at my house. In under 30 minutes, you’ll have your family or guests raving over these! This summer be sure to keep a plentiful supply of Northwest fresh sweet cherries on hand for a nutrition-rich snack.  Place a handful of cherries in sealable plastic bags in the refrigerator for quick grab-and-go snacks or to take for lunch for dessert.

These are so incredibly healthy too. Researchers found that consuming about 45 cherries daily may significantly decrease circulating concentrations of specific inflammatory biomarkers in the body. The research study, published in The Journal of Nutrition, was conducted at the USDA-ARS Western Human Nutrition Research Center. Because of the link between inflammatory markers and some chronic diseases, the changes in the identified biomarkers suggest that consuming cherries may reduce risk or modify the severity of diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. Whether eaten out of hand or added to your favorite recipes, remember the season for Northwest fresh sweet cherries is short so enjoy them now or you’ll have to wait until next year!

 

 

Grilled Turkey Cobb

Grilled Turkey Cobb

I can’t believe it has been three years since my cookbook, 150 Best Grilled Cheese Recipes was released. April is National Grilled Cheese Month so here is one of my kid’s favorite recipes: Grilled Turkey Cobb recipe (one of the 149 recipes in my book). Grilled Cheese sandwiches are still the classic comfort food that continue to gain a resurgence in popularity. In my cookbook you will find a collection of grilled cheese recipes for lunch, dinner, snacks, appetizers, desserts and even condiments. I am offering readers 20% off if you purchase a copy before May 1st. Just click here to order.

150BestGrilledCheesePage

Here are a few of my favorite grilled cheese tips:

1. Spread softened butter ont eh bread instead of adding it to the pan. This will keep the butter from burning.

2. Use grated, shredded or thinly sliced cheese for quicker melting.

3. Slice and grate the cheese when it’s cold for quicker melting.

4. The more cheese, the better the results.

5. Use your favorite bread and don’t slice it too thick (1/2-inch to 1-inch) is best.

6. Use your favorite toppings and combinations. Be creative and enjoy!

Smokey Barbecue Hamburgers

Smokey Barbecue Hamburger

With a house full of teens hamburgers on the grill are the ideal summer or anytime go-to dinner idea. They LOVE this recipe for Smokey Barbecue Hamburgers! To keep it a bit healthier, combine different kinds of ground meats and season them using this Smokey BBQ Ketchup to bridge the smokey flavors of barbecue with the classic ketchup texture and taste. Use a mixture of ground beef, turkey, lamb, chicken….any combination works and mix in a few tablespoons of the Smokey BBQ Ketchup to the meat as you form the patties.It’s SO easy and flavorful! I am loving this ketchup collection from Victoria Amory! Look for it in a store near you or order it on her website.

Ketchup Collection

Pulled Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches: Labor Day Recipe

Can you believe it? Labor Day is just around the corner. This family favorite recipe for Pulled Barbecue Chicken Sandwiches uses bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts, which are full of flavor and moisture. When combined with homemade barbecue sauce, the tender shredded chicken takes on a sweet smokiness that’s far better than anything you could find in a bottle at the grocery store. See more great recipes like this at RecipeRehab.com.

Grilled Carnegie Sandwich

As an expert for the NFRA (National Frozen and Refrigeration Foods Association), I am excited to share that June is National Dairy month! In celebration, I am sharing my recipe for Grilled Carnegie Sandwich from my latest cookbook, 150 Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. This is the perfect sandwich for Fathers’s day this weekend! I love dairy foods because they are more than just kitchen staples. With everything from milk and cheese to juice and dips to potatoes and cookie/pastry dough, the refrigerated dairy aisle is always a destination for mealtime inspiration (especially with 3 kids). Also with a variety of foods and drinks found in the refrigerated dairy aisle, you can create dishes for every meal occasion; from breakfast to dinner and everything in between.

This month NFRA has partnered with chef and culinary expert, Aida Mollenkamp, to show Americans the creative culinary possibilities that can come from foods in the refrigerated dairy aisle. Aida Mollenkamp has created unique, unexpected recipes using foods found in the refrigerated dairy aisle, and each recipe offers a perfect balance of taste and health, and showcases the foods’ real, simple, farm-grown ingredients.

  • Check out culinary inspiration on The Dish Diary Tumblr – The National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association’s photo blog for creative ideas and recipes for any meal occasion using foods from the refrigerated dairy aisle, and invites American’s to share their own inspired recipes.  Visit TheDishDiary.Tumblr.com to upload a photo of a creative dish or interesting food pairing made from foods found in the refrigerated dairy aisle. Also, for more mealtime inspiration also visit www.EasyHomeMeals.com

 

Gluten Free Diet idea: Sandwich on a Stick

So many friends are on a a gluten free diet for health or other reasons. This recipe for  Sandwiches on a Stick are the perfect gluten free sandwich recipe idea. These also make great  lunch ideas for the kids or even appetizers for a spring, summer, or fall tailgating party. Get your kids to help choose the ingredients and assist with preparing them. They are so cute, and adults and kids will love them! See some of my other favorite gluten free recipes here.

Black Russian Grilled Cheese: National Grilled Cheese Month

April is National Grilled Cheese Month, so be sure to check out my latest cookbook 150 Best Grilled Cheese Sandwiches. Order your copy today for more recipes like this one for Black Russian Grilled Cheese. This grilled cheese sandwich is as good as it looks, and it makes a perfect  weekday or weekend sandwich recipe. Grilled cheese is America’s comfort, and a hot food trend. I am so fortunate to be a part of the grilled cheese celebration!