Potlucks are a wonderful time to learn about new foods, recipes, and cooking techniques. Sharing a meal can be the vehicle that turns strangers into acquaintances and acquaintances into life long friends. Gathering together with people to share food should be a joyful part of building community.
Unfortunately traditional potlucks can be a nerve-wracking experience for people striving to make the healthiest food choices for their body.
The heartiest dish on the table,Italian Halibut Stew, was not a Weight Watchers recipe but a family favorite from our friend Dorothy. I was honestly a little hesitant to try this one. When it comes to fish soup, I have always been a white chowder girl. Tomato sauce and fish feel a bit dissonant to me. Now, I have been schooled. This stew was rich and flavorful with a creamy texture. It was full of chunky bits of fish and vegetable to give you the sense that you are eating something much heavier than the totaled Points Plus reflect.
This Halibut stew was so good and Dorothy graciously let me share her recipe!
Marinated Cucumber Salad
Sliced cucumbers simply marinated overnight in rice wine vinegar, with sliced onion, salt, pepper, and lots of dill.
I don't know what was better the crisp fresh taste or that they won't set you back a single Point! Mike and I gladly accepted the leftovers when they were offered. Thanks Ted!
Vitamix Pumpkin Soup
This velvety cup of pumpkin soup came from our friends Cheryl and Hans, who just treated themselves to a Vitamix. Lucky ducks!
To make this soup grab a Vitamix and toss in some peeled pumpkin chunks, a celery rib, a couple handfuls of baby carrots, add 1 ½ cups of water, spices and blend for 5 minutes. How awesome is that! If you, like me, don't have a Vitamix - simmer the ingredients on the stove and puree them once they have softened.
We were on the fence about the best spices to use, but the veggie blend was right on the money. Another simple dish that doesn't "cost" a single point. Love it!
Weight Watchers Chocolate Biscotti
Cheryl and Hans also came bearing a heap of 1 Point Plus a piece Double Chocolate Biscotti that would make any Nonni proud. This is an original Weight Watchers recipe. If you are on the look out for a great firm, chocolatey, nutty, and full flavored cookie you have to give it a try.
The biscotti wasn't the only sweet treat we sampled! There were two, low calorie, easy pies from Weight Watchers recipes.
Crustless Pumpkin Pie
I started with the crustless pumpkin pie. It was very soft to the point that it lost its shape going from the dish to my plate. The flavor, on the other hand, was just what I hoped for. Creamy, pumpkiny, spicy, and sweet and 15 Points Plus for the entire pie. Yum! Yum! Thank you Carol, for sharing this lovely dessert.
No-Bake Key Lime Pie
The second pie I tried was this No-Bake Key Lime Pie. It was made by our meeting leader, Pam, who is great about trying new recipes then passing along the ones she enjoys. This recipe came to Pam via another meeting member and the sharing continues here.
It was a fluffy lime Jell-O cloud in a graham cracker crust. I liked the fluffy texture combined with the crunchy graham cracker bits. The recipe looks like a cinch to make and it comes in at approximately 4 Points Plus a serving. I would probably change it up just a little and make the filling in individual dishes. Simply crumbling a graham cracker (or ginger snap) over the top would have texture similar to the pie crust with less calories.
Italian Halibut Stew
- 2 pounds halibut or other firm white fish- cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1 - 2 tablespoons olive oil for sautéing
- ¾ cup onion
- 3 cloves garlic minced (may substitute garlic salt)
- 1 cup chopped celery
- ½ - 1 cup chopped green bell pepper - bite sized pieces
- 2 tomatoes
- 1 cup tomato juice unsalted
- 1 cup white wine water may be substituted
- 1 9 ounce package of frozen Italian green beans
- ½ cup rice uncooked
- 1 beef bouillon cube
- ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon dried Italian herb blend
- ⅛ ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley - minced
- Optional - fresh grated Parmesan cheese to sprinkle on the top
- Cut the Halibut into pieces as noted above. Cover and refrigerate the fish until it is time to add it to the stew.
- On the stove top - heat a large dutch oven or heavy bottomed soup pot to medium high heat. Add oil and sauté the onion, garlic, celery, and green pepper until soft and fragrant.
- Add tomatoes, tomato juice, wine, beans, rice, bouillon cube, Worcestershire sauce, Italian herbs, and black pepper. Cover and simmer over medium/low heat for 15 minutes.
- Add cut fish and parsley. Simmer an additional 10 minutes or until the fish has cooked through completely.
- Serve hot. If desired sprinkle with a small amount of grated Parmesan cheese.