I definitely need to share my winner of a dinner with you guys.
Something I have really been enjoying lately is turning a traditionally unhealthy meal into a tasty, healthified version!
Since my brush with chicken fingers and fries at the arena last week, it has sparked a bit of a craving in me for fried foods. To satisfy this, I decided to make chicken fingers and fries for dinner tonight…
But don’t be fooled! This unhealthy looking plate is actually nutritious! Those are baked turnip fries, and healthified chicken fingers that I made with boneless, skinless chicken tenders rolled in egg and Italian breadcrumbs and then baked.
No frying went into this meal! And I am feeling healthy, full, and extremely satisfied.
First let’s talk turnips. The last time we were at Andmo’s parents house, his mom was busy in the kitchen making turnip fries for dinner. I was intrigued instantly. She said they were a great alternative to potato fries, and they were easy and delicious. I made a mental note then that I had to try them.
I picked up some turnips at the grocery store yesterday and today got to work in the kitchen!
I washed three turnips, and then peeled them with a potato peeler.
(Four are pictured there, but I only ended up using three because they made a LOT of fries.)
I should also mention that these were extremely easy to peel. I will pretty much do anything to avoid peeling potatoes. Potato peeling ranks up there with vacuuming on my list of least-favourite activities. But the turnip peels came off really easily.
I then sliced the turnips into “fries.”
I tossed them with a bit of olive oil, sea salt, pepper, and Cajun seasoning and spread them all out on a baking sheet.
I baked them in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes, before turning them and baking them for another 20 minutes or so.
And voila, turnip fries!
I dipped my fries in ketchup, as I would with regular fries, and these babies were pretty darn good. They were not as crispy as potato fries (maybe closer to sweet potato fries), and they tasted a bit different, but they tasted good. Even Andreezy was a fan, and he was the one who said “But I don’t like turnips…” as I was preparing them. I said “You just wait.”
He likes turnips now ;).
These took a bit of prep time, so for a weeknight meal I’d probably peel and slice them the night before so they were ready to go after work.
A bit of turnip nutrition if you’re interested. Turnips have only a third the amount of calories as potatoes, and they provide an excellent source of vitamin C, fibre, folic acid, and copper. They also offer thiamine, potassium, and magesium. And a bunch of other things. You can go to town on a plate full of turnip fries and not feel any of the guilt you would ransacking a plate of french fries! Turnips = a healthy win.
Onto the chicken fingers!
This recipe was inspired by the Easy, Healthy, Chicken Parmesan I’ve been making lately. I cracked two eggs into a bowl and mixed all the egginess into a yellow goupy mess (I used the whole egg, not just the whites). I then dipped boneless, skinless chicken tenders (they are smaller than regular chicken breasts, but usually found right beside them in the meat department), into the egg mixture and then into a bowl of Italian breadcrumbs. I made sure the tenders were completely covered with breadcrumbs, and then I lined them up on a baking sheet (sprayed with cooking spray).
I baked them at 400 degrees for 15 minutes, turning them once at the 10 minute mark. You could probably bake them at 350 degrees, but I wanted to bake mine simultaneously with my turnip fries.
They were amazing. I actually thought they were better than any frozen chicken fingers I’ve ever bought. Though the turnip fries were good, the chicken fingers may have been the highlight of this meal. Ando was obsessed with them.
And they were so easy!
I dipped mine in plum sauce before devouring them.
This was a good little Sunday dinner!
Some articles of possible interest:
Belly Off! Weight Loss Secrets (via MensHealth)
Whole Wheat English Muffin vs. Whole Wheat Bagel (via Cooking Light)
9 Delicious Foods That Can Help You Lose Weight (via Canadian Living)
And for Jersey Shore fans:
Hilarious Jersey Shore Gifs (my faves are probably “The Pauly D Retreat” and “The Whaaaa?” :D)