a simple lifestyle blog
We moved to Portland from the wide world of suburbia less than a year ago.
Its been one of the most exciting and formative decisions of our married lives thus far.
People ask us how we like living in the city and one thing sticks out in my mind as the ultimate perk of living in an urban city:
The vast and diverse eatery options within a 5-mile radius of our home, rather than the same one, maybe two, chain joints in town.
Now, I’m not saying that Applebee’s and Olive Garden don’t have their merits. But you can only indulge in the same routine for so long before you feel like
Now its thai, burgers, tacos, cajun, pizza, spaetzle and, of course, brunch anytime we want within 15-minutes on foot.
It is glorious and a little self-indulgent.
The one thing I do miss from my days in suburbia is the mozzarella sticks at Applebee’s. Its true. I can’t deny it. They have some kind of hold on me.
Just for kicks, I looked up the nutritional facts on those bad boys since, ya know, I’m trying to be healthy-ish and all.
103 calories per serving (that’s just one stick, fyi). Did I mention 293 mg of sodium per stick as well?
You’re only supposed to have about 2,400 mg of sodium according to a 2,000 calorie/day diet. It would only take 8 of these cheese sticks to meet your daily allotment.
Oddly enough, I still want some cheese sticks, dagnabbit!
Here’s what you’ll need:
12 sticks part-skim mozzarella sticks
1 c breadcrumbs (I blended up my own using Sarah Lee 45-calorie bread)
10 crackers, crushed (I used Milton’s Original Multi-Grain crackers)
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp + 1 Tbsp parsley flakes
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp basil
2 tsp parmesan cheese
1 large egg
2 Tbsp flour
Here’s what you’ll do:
1. Pop the cheese sticks in the freezer while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
2. Place the bread crumbs (or torn up pieces of bread), crackers, salt, 1/4 tsp parsley flakes, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano and basil in a food processor and blend it up until it is all blended and broken down into crumbs.
3. Place the mixture into a large bowl and add the parmesan cheese and remaining 1 Tbsp of parsley flakes. Mix well.
4. Beat the egg by itself in a shallow bowl. Set aside.
5. Sprinkle the flour into a shallow dish. Set aside.
6. Place a sheet of parchment paper on a baking sheet and spray lightly with cooking spray.
7. Remove the cheese sticks from their plastic packaging and slice in half.
8. Roll cheese stick in flour and lightly shake off excess flour.
9. Roll cheese stick in egg.
10. Repeat steps 8 and 9 just one more time.
*This step is not necessarily mandatory, but I found it created a thicker coat around the cheese stick so that less cheese oozed out when baking.
11. Roll the coated cheese stick in the breadcrumb mixture making sure to cover thoroughly.
12. Place cheese stick on the parchment paper/cooking spray lined baking sheet.
13. Once each cheese stick is coated and on the baking sheet, place the baking sheet into the freezer while the oven preheats to 400 degrees. I left them in the freezer for 20 minutes, which was slightly longer than the preheat time.
14. Bake on the lower racks of your oven for 4-5 minutes per side.
15. Eat them all and leave none for your family.
(Just kidding, don’t do that.)
Nutritional Facts per serving (2 sticks):
Total Fat: 4.6 g
Cholesterol: 25.9 mg
Sodium: 308.2 mg
Total Carbohydrate: 7.3 g
Protein: 7.6 g
If you pay more attention to the food in your oven than the Netflix on your TV, you can avoid having a Mount Vesuvius situation with the cheese, but #NoRegrets, oozy cheese and all, these are SO tasty. I am never going back.
Until next time, cheers!