Saturday, September 10, 2011

"Everything" Cheese Spread

Last night my husband and I were at our local grocery store. I’ve been eyeing these delectable looking everything bagels in the bakery department for a while now, and decided to go ahead and pick them up for breakfast this morning. I could smell the onion and garlic seeping through the package, and could practically feel the poppy seeds in my mouth, the way they pop and crunch with every bite. I was so ready to toss them in my basket when I turned them around to look at the nutritional information (I like to torture myself): 330 calories, and only 3 grams of fiber. Next to them were the whole wheat variety (staring me down with their bran crumbles on top) with only 280 calories, and 9 grams of fiber. I liked what I was reading on the whole wheat variety more, but I was practically drooling over the everything version. Now since I don’t often buy bagels, I was okay with splurging on something not entirely healthy, but then I had a thought: what if I buy the whole wheat bagels (which I also really like) and make an everything-type spread to go on top! Problem solved. 

One of the reasons I began cooking more is because I like to be able to control what goes into my recipes and what I’m feeding my friends and family. This allows me to put more of the good in my recipes, like fresh ingredients, whole grains, and healthy fats; and less of the bad. I like that I can take something I see at the store and make my own version at home that is not only healthier, but tastes just as good if not better. This recipe is an excellent example and so simple to make. 

Getting Started

Instead of using cream cheese for the base of the spread, I opted for light Laughing Cow cheese; I like it because it’s only 35 calories per wedge and, in my opinion, tastes better than its fat free cream cheese counterpart; feel free to use whatever kind of spreadable cheese you like! I unwrapped four wedges, put them in a small mixing bowl with the rest of the ingredients, and mixed them together until smooth. That’s it, and it was so tasty!


Wrapping it up

This spread would also be great on crackers, used in dips, on baked potatoes, to spread on vegetables, or whatever you can think of. Whatever you choose, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did! 

Ingredients

Sally barking orders!
4, 3/4oz wedges Laughing Cow Cheese (Light Creamy Swiss variety), or 3oz of another spreadable cheese
Small bunch of fresh chives
1 sage leaf
1/2 thyme sprig (if buying at the grocery store; they are much bigger than my home grown variety)
1/4 tsp poppy seeds
1/4 tsp sesame seeds
1 shake of garlic powder (in my experience, too much will make it taste bitter)
Sprinkle of coarse salt



Servings: 1-2 (we split a bagel and it was PLENTY to cover both halves)


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