Thursday, March 7, 2013

Panini Grilled Low Fat Meals

Fuel Your Recovery! Panini Grilled Salmon, Spring Salad Greens and Sweet Potato Fries
With spring just around the corner, I think we'll admit most of us have lost a bit of our fitness edge over the winter months. The spirit may be willing but the flesh is sort of out of shape so right now is the time to amp up your diet with nutrient rich, antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods.  By doing so, you can take a preemptive strike against sore muscles and joints even before the roadwork begins.

If you are trying to limit your fat intake, great but please remember not to exclude the good Omega 3 lipids that are so important to health and keeping inflammation at bay.  Rather than exclude higher fat foods like salmon, tuna and mackerel, why not reconsider how to cook them?

Panini Grilled Salmon is quick, easy & delicious!
Panini Grillin'
Cutting the fat doesn't mean cutting the flavor. I use a Showtime Rotisserie Oven for chicken and fish but when I want a quick meal, I use a Panini Grill, (Bella Cucina). Yes, it makes delicious toasty Panini Sandwiches but it is also perfect for low fat grilling of fish, chicken, vegetables and a lot more.  
The non-stick surface allows you to use very little cooking oil. In fact the salmon you see here was simply brushed with a little EVO before being laid on the grill.  So simple, here is a basic recipe that works for chicken, fish or steak:

Panini Grilled Salmon Recipe

1-2   3 oz Boneless Skinless Salmon Fillets or Salmon Burger
1 teaspoon Lemon Juice
1 tablespoon EVO for brushing
Dash of Garlic Powder
Dash of Sazon Goya 
Dash of Blazin Blends Memphis Style Grill Seasoning
Place salmon in a bowl and coat with lemon juice.  Brush the fillets or patties with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with seasoning.  Set aside and let marinate for about 15 minutes.
Heat Panini Grill on high until "Ready" light comes on. Add your salmon fillets and close the lid to use as a press grill. These will cook in under 5 minutes as the lid of the Panini Press is also heated. 
Add an extra dash of fresh lemon juice and serve hot on a bed of fresh greens with oven baked sweet potato fries.

Variation on Salmon-Grilled Salmon Burgers & Cheddar Scone
This particular Panini Grill has a removable drip pan the catches any excess oil that comes off during cooking.  Sort of like the George Forman Grill but a bit smaller.  This grill is large enough to make two big panini sandwiches, chicken breasts or fish fillets. Use it closed to cook faster so your food is pressed between the two heated surfaces.  Leave it open if you want to use it as a contact grill. Either way the results are fantastic as you can stuff your sandwiches with low fat, grilled vegetables for extra nutrition and fiber.

Grilled Chicken and Beef Cluck n' Moo Burgers are also lower in saturated fat.

Having kitchen equipment like this makes it easier to put together a quick, healthy dinner at the end of the day. Using your microwave to defrost your fillets is another time saver. Cooking at home has never been easier and now you can treat yourself to healthy, quick meals to fuel your workouts.

Bella Cucina B Artful Food Panini Grill & Press

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