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The Perfect Light Brunch Menu

Quiche is a classic brunch menu item with classically heavy ingredients set in a classically heavy crust.  Instead of serving a typical ham and swiss quiche to your family, show them how much you love them by serving them this ultra easy and fit version- a veggie frittata. They go well beyond brunch; in fact, my husband and I enjoy them on top of mixed greens with a simple vinaigrette frequently.
Zucchini, Tomato and Ricotta Frittata
                6 large eggs
               1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 medium zucchinis, sliced into ¼” pieces
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
3/4 cup ricotta cheese
How To:
1.       In a large bowl, whisk eggs, parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper.  Set aside. Preheat your broiler.
2.       On a large baking sheet, place zucchini slices in one layer and season well with oil, salt and pepper. Cook until brown. Change the oven setting to about 400 degrees.
3.       Add oil to a large skillet (oil the sides, too) and add zucchini. Add the garlic, tomatoes, and dollop the ricotta on top of the zucchini.  Pour the egg mixture into the skillet. Cover. Cook  frittata in hot oven until the eggs are puffed, browned, and firm in the center, about 15 minutes. Remove from oven and serve right away. Top with fresh oregano and a bit more parmesan.
In full disclosure, this is an altered spin on a recipe from the Atkins Diet cookbook (Colette Heimowitz). While I don’t promote any “diet”, this is a perfect meal for the healthy eating that I promote. Perfect healthy replacement for the greasy and heavy hash that some of you love so…
1 small head cauliflower, trimmed and broken into very small florets
3 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, diced
2 teaspoons dried thyme
Salt and pepper
1 ½ pounds roast chicken breast, cut into uniform cubes (make it easy on yourself and grab a rotisserie chicken from your local market)
1/4 cup heavy cream
1.       Bring a medium pot of well salted water to boil. Add cauliflower; cook until knife tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and cool.
2.       Melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion, thyme, salt, and pepper; cook until soft and caramel colored, 4-6 minutes. Add cauliflower and cook 2 minutes longer.
3.       Increase heat to high and add chicken, stirring occasionally, until well browned, about 6 minutes. Add cream and cook until almost dry, about 2 minutes. For these last 2 minutes, I suggest flattening the ingredients in the bottom of the skillet and weighing down with another heavy pot, to ensure crispness. Serve warm with a sunny side up egg on top.
Greek Yogurt Parfaits
Greek yogurt is very high in protein and though it can be higher in fat than other “light” yogurt, the high protein and natural tartness is a perfect way to start the day. The plain flavor is for sure the best as far as nutrition but lacks a little in flavor; add the right fruits and a small drizzle of honey for added sweetness.
Each recipe yields two individual parfaits.
·         1/3 low sugar apricot preserves
·         3 cups sliced strawberries
·         2 cups plain Greek yogurt
·         1/3 cup low-fat/low sugar granola
·         2 tablespoons slivered almonds and walnuts, toasted
1.       Place apricot preserves in a medium microwave-safe bowl, and microwave at high for 10 to 15 seconds or until preserves melt. Add strawberries, and toss gently to coat.

2.       Spoon 1/4 cup yogurt into each of 4 parfait glasses; top each serving with 1/3 cup strawberry mixture. Repeat the layers with the remaining yogurt and strawberry mixture. Top each serving with 2 tablespoons granola and 1 1/2 teaspoons almonds. Serve immediately.

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