Pickled “Fried” Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce + Weekly Menu

Pickled Fried Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce 1

Yesterday was the first day I was able to get in the lake and actually enjoy the water. As in, it was above 64 degrees for the first time this summer, or so it seemed. We’ve had very few 80-something degree days, perhaps none in the 90′s, and have been *lucky* to get weather in the 70′s. With temps dropping below 60 most every night, everything is just…confused.

Except Lily. Fortunately or unfortunately, Lily hasn’t been confused – if it’s a weekend day, she throws a temper tantrum until we head to the beach. The girl just knows that when it’s a summer weekend day and the sun is out…she wants to be bummin’ on the beach. And she makes her wishes very well-known. Brat.

Pickled Fried Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce 2

My hydrangea are MIA this year. Was it the brutal winter or the unusually mild summer? Not sure.

Why is Mr. Prevention STILL talking about getting a jet ski? I’ll never know.

Tomato plants? Totally confused.

Despite not having a backyard, we have two decent-sized side yards, one of which gets some good sun most of the day. While I had proposed a raised bed garden in years past, it wasn’t a good idea until this year when I felt as round as the Goodyear blimp and Mr. Prevention wanted to tackle the project. He has a green thumb, of sorts, but his tomato plants have turned into one giant heap of tomato madness. He didn’t exactly allow space enough for them to actually grow.

Pickled Fried Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce 3

The tomato plants have gotten so far as to produce a MASSIVE amount of green tomatoes, but the temps and sun haven’t warranted them actually turning red yet. And before he reads this (unlikely, but possible) and corrects me, a *few* have turned red. But there’s about 421 green tomatoes in my side yard that are making little to no progress in their ripening. It may be October before we’re getting actual yield from the garden.

But the good news is: green tomatoes are delicious, too. Not as versatile, but certainly delicious.

Fried green tomatoes or “fried” green tomatoes have become somewhat trendy. Not quite bacon status, but lusted after amongst foodies. I mean, what’s not to love about a “Fried” Green Tomato BLT? Or these Pickled “Fried” Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce? Yes, please! I guess it’s alright by me if summer stays confused. Or the tomatoes, anyway.

Pickled Fried Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce 4

5.0 from 1 reviews
Pickled "Fried" Green Tomatoes with Buttermilk-Herb Sauce
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • ½ tsp kosher salt
  • 16 (1/4-inch-thick) slices green tomato (about 4 tomatoes)
  • 7 Tbsp lowfat buttermilk, divided
  • 3 Tbsp light olive oil-based mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp fresh dill, minced
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper, divided
  • 1¼ cup panko
  • ⅓ cup masa harina
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 large egg white
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  1. Combine pickling ingredients in a large saucepan; bring to a boil. Add tomatoes; cook 2 minutes. Remove from heat; let stand 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain tomatoes; pat dry.
  2. Meanwhile, combine 5 tablespoons buttermilk and next 4 ingredients (through garlic), stirring with a whisk. Stir in ¼ teaspoon pepper.
  3. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add panko to pan; cook 2 minutes or until toasted, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in masa harina, ¼ teaspoon salt, and remaining ¼ teaspoon pepper. Place panko mixture in a shallow dish. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons buttermilk, egg, and egg white, stirring with a whisk in a second shallow dish. Place flour in a third shallow dish.
  4. Dredge tomato slices in flour; dip in egg mixture, and dredge in panko mixture, turning to coat.
  5. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add half of tomatoes; cook 4 minutes. Flip and cook an additional 3-4 minutes or until browned. Repeat with remaining oil and tomatoes. Serve with sauce.
Recipe slightly adapted from Cooking Light
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 tomato slices with sauce Calories: 155 Fat: 8.1 Carbohydrates: 17.9 Sugar: 5.0 Sodium: 226 Fiber: 1.4 Protein: 4.4 Cholesterol: 24

Weekly Menu: August 3rd – August 7th

 Only TWO entries are still up for grabs in this year’s chili contest! Be sure to check out the details at the end of this post!

Mi familia is coming up for a beach day and cookout :-D

Be well,


No Bake S’mores Bars + 5th Annual Chili Contest Details!!

No Bake S’mores Bars 1

Mr. Prevention has a designated shelf in the pantry for all of his goodies. I try not to even glance in the general direction of the shelf as it contains nothing healthy and nothing remotely low in calories.

Poptarts, Reeses Pieces, Twizzlers, frosted animal crackers, and the list goes on and on. I mean, the man easily eats 3,000 calories between 7pm and 10pm every night and yet I’m the only always battling the scale. #lifeaintfair

No Bake S’mores Bars 2

Speaking of which, the scale and pregnancy can be a tough. At just about 30 weeks, I’m up 20 pounds and while I realize many women have gained more than that at this point in their pregnancy, my pre-pregnancy weight didn’t warrant more than 15 pounds of weight gain. That said, I’ve changed very little about my diet over the past 30 weeks and so it’s just tough to lack that control over what my body’s up to.

Luckily, I never battled nausea and I’ve continues to eat healthy 80% of the time and splurge the rest of the time ;) Since my splurges are no longer on craft beer or an aged glass of Chianti, desserts have been my go-to splurge. In moderation, of course…despite all of the prods of, “Baby Shea wants it!” or “You can eat whatever you want, you’re pregnant!”

BONK. Very much so BONK.

No Bake S’mores Bars 3

I’ve tried to keep the sweets to not-so-sinful sweets, like Lime Creamsicles and Strawberry Frozen Yogurt. It’s easier to keep things on the lighter side when summer’s here and fruit is not only delicious, but affordable.

But then, there’s other times where summer’s sweets include no fruit but are just a perfect take on the ever-loved s’more. I mean, unless you’re living under a rock, s’more everything is everywhere this time of year…and, I love it. Give me s’mores in any form and I’m one happy girl. The no-bake and 139 calories per serving are certainly added perks to this recipe, however!

No Bake S’mores Bars 4

No Bake S’mores Bars
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 24
  • 12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 3 cups mini marshmallows
  • 6 cups Golden Grahams cereal
  1. Line a 9x13-inch dish with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large microwave safe bowl, combine the chocolate and coconut oil. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds or until melted. If additional time is needed, microwave in 15-20 second increments, stirring between. To the chocolate, stir in 1 cup of marshmallow and mix until melted and incorporated into the chocolate.
  3. Stir the remaining 2 cups of marshmallows and the cereal into the bowl, mixing to coat in the chocolate completely. Transfer mixture to the 9x13 and flatten over the entire bottom of the dish, using the back of a spatula coated with cooking spray. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours or until chocolate has set. Cut into bars; store in the refrigerator.
Recipe adapted from Crazy for Crust
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 bar Calories: 139 Fat: 5.5 Carbohydrates: 23.4 Sugar: 15.1 Sodium: 95 Fiber: 0.3 Protein: 0.9 Cholesterol: 0

 As s’more season transitions into football season, I’ll be anxious to have a baby. And maybe drink a pumpkin ale. But most certainly, I’ll also be pumped up and ready for my 5th ANNUAL CHILI CONTEST!! How has it been 5 years already!?

So, here’s the very simple deal. If you have a GREAT chili recipe you’d love to submit, email it to me at nicole@preventionrd.com. I will accept the first EIGHT chili entries and will email you either way to let you know if you were one of the first 8 :)

The 1st place winner will win a $100 Visa gift card and the 2nd place winner, a $50 Visa gift card.

SEND ME YOUR DELICIOUS CHILI RECIPE NOW! Illini football season kicks off on August 30th and my chili posts will begin in early September and will wrap up by the close of the college football season, when the winners will be announced. :-D

Be well,


Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini + Weekly Menu

Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini 1

An hour ago, I was at the beach with Mr. P and Lily. My weather alerts kept threatening storms, but it was sunny and hot and perfect beach weather…for all of about 30 minutes. 40 minutes, tops. I was reading, baring my ultra-white pregnant tummy to the sun gods when I started to feel rain drops. Just a few, as I willed them away with happy, dry thoughts. And then a few more…and then a few more.

If you know me, you probably know I HATE rain. I hate rain so much so that I skipped class in college when it was raining. Is there anything worse than having to sit in a boring lecture when you’re sopping wet?

Hardly. But rain drops when you’re at the beach is no fun, either.

Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini 2

But that wasn’t our only beach disaster of the weekend (and at least we made it home before the HAIL that came soon thereafter).

Mr. Prevention also decided it would be a good idea to have a bonfire on the beach last night. A good idea, in theory. Except Lake Michigan + surrounding nature + dusk and dark = MONSTROUS EVIL MOSQUITOES. All summer long he’s been begging me to accompany him to the beach for a fire and last night I caved, knowing my friend Mary who was visiting likes doing fun things.

Needless to say, they were calling it quits after about 15 minutes and dozens of mosquito bites. Of course I had to get in a few, “Ummm…I told you so’s.”

Nicole – 1. Mr. Prevention – o.

Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini 3

Mr. Prevention is also obsessed with the idea of a jet ski. Never mind the fact that we’re 4 weeks away from summer’s end (WHA?!), but we have a baby on the way and jet skiing is a one-person activity. He’s gone as far as to install a trailer hitch on my car and get quotes for a jet ski. I was getting nervous with his commitment to the idea, I’m not going to lie. But I think I’ve talked some sense into him. At least for the time being.

Nicole – 2. Mr. Prevention – 0.

My winning streak continues with a whole bunch of winning recipes off last week’s weekly menu, but this one tops the yum charts. I generally post recipes in the order in which we make them (correction, I make them)…but the best of the best deserve to be shared sooner rather than later. So, here we are.

Do not mistake the simple ingredient list and easy preparation for simple flavors and lack-luster results. Mr. Prevention ate THREE SQUASH for dinner. And lucky for us, our garden and CSA are putting out squash at a rapid pace. I plan to fill every last one with goat cheese and marinara and enjoy every last bite.

Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini 4

Goat Cheese and Marinara-Stuffed Zucchini
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 (1 zucchini boat each)
My summer addiction. I could eat these every day, quite literally. Healthy, simple, and summer...yes, please!
  • 4 zucchini, halved lengthwise
  • ½ tsp salt
  • black pepper, to taste
  • 5 oz goat cheese
  • 1 cup marinara sauce
  1. Preheat oven or grill to 400F.
  2. Scoop out the seeds of the halved zucchini, leaving the zucchini hollowed out. Season with salt and black pepper and place on baking sheet.
  3. Using half of goat cheese, spread a small amount in the bottom of each zucchini. Spoon marinara sauce on top, then sprinkle with remaining goat cheese to finish.
  4. Grill or bake until the marinara is hot and the zucchini is fork-tender, about 15-20 minutes, depending on the size of the zucchini. Serve immediately.
Recipe ever so slightly adapted from The Wicked Noodle
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 zucchini boat Calories: 81 Fat: 5.0 Carbohydrates: 6.1 Sugar: 2.8 Sodium: 288 Fiber: 1.6 Protein: 5.9 Cholesterol: 8

 Weekly Menu: July 27th – July 31st

Grocery store and workout ahead. Why do I always try to be productive after the beach? It’s always a struggle.

Be well,


Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas

Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas 1

Sometimes, I have good ideas. More rarely, Mr. Prevention has good ideas (kidding, kidding).

When I started this blog over 5 years ago, it was a great idea and Mr. Prevention didn’t think I’d blog for more than a few weeks. Silly guy.

When Mr. P decided to build a garden this year – it was a great idea. We have squash and tomatoes galore!

Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas 2

Mr. Prevention’s recent idea: to buy a wave runner.

My idea: to buy a larger SUV/crossover with Shea’s imminent arrival.

Hmmmm…one is so practical and one is so…not practical.

So what does he do? He installs a trailer hitch on my crossover, plans to buy a rack, and when we have overflow luggage when traveling with dog & baby, we can strap it to the back. PERFECT!!! Wait, no. Eye roll.

Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas 3

Sometimes, our ideas are…not so great ideas. It happens.

Like the time I made COLD avocado soup – not a great idea. That was at least 4 years ago and Mr. Prevention still likes to remind me of that culinary disaster.

Other times, on occasion, I hit a culinary home run. Like these Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas, for example. They are husband-approved and coworker-approved. So much flavor going on. I know I teased everyone with these on Instagram yesterday when we enjoyed leftovers, so, alas, here’s the recipe. :)

Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas 4

5.0 from 3 reviews
Avocado and Carnitas Tostadas
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8 (2 tostadas each)
  • 3 lb pork shoulder, all fat removed
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp adobo seasoning
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 4 cloves garlic, cut into quarters
  • ¾ cup low-sodium chicken broth
  • 6 chipotle peppers in adobo, minced
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 3 large avocados
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 16 tostadas
  • 1 small head of romaine, chopped
  • 3 tomatoes, diced
  1. Season pork with salt and pepper on all sides. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the pork and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes per side. Remove to a cutting board.
  2. In a small dish, combine the cumin, adobo seasoning, and garlic powder; mix well and rub over all surfaces of pork. Using a sharp paring knife, insert blade into the pork on all sides, inserting slivers of garlic into each hole, repeating with all of the garlic.
  3. Transfer pork to a slow cooker and add chicken broth, chipotles in adobo, and bay leaves. Cook on low for 8-10 hours. Remove to a cutting board and shred meat using 2 forks. Drain all but ½ to ⅔ cup of the liquid in the slow cooker and return meat to the slow cooker; cover and allow to cook an additional 5-10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, mash the avocados against the side of a bowl using the back of a fork; add salt and combine well.
  5. To assemble, spread avocado over the surface of each tostada and top with 3 ounces of shredded pork, lettuce, tomato, and salsa, if desired. Serve immediately.
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 2 tostadas Calories: 500 Fat: 26.5 Carbohydrates: 31.9 Sugar: 2.6 Sodium: 805 Fiber: 7.8 Protein: 35.6 Cholesterol: 90

 The end of the week is in sight! Good thing, I could barely hold my eyelids open for most of yesterday afternoon.

Be well,


Lime Creamsicles

Lime Creamsicles 1

 I can’t help but feel like summer is coming to an end. It always seems like from the 4th of July until the kiddos head back to school is over in a quick minute. Literally.  As I walk across the hospital’s campus, I bask in the sun and am thankful for the sunny rays as I know how much more snow we see than warm sunshine (on the days it hasn’t rained, of course…).

And then I get a little grouchy because within a few short minutes, I’m back inside and back to work…without a window in sight.


Lime Creamsicles 2

 Summer has slipped away from me this year, just as it has every other.

I mean, it’s late July and we’re just getting around to the first popsicle post of the year?!?!?!?! BLASPHEMY!

I realize I was on a soft serve kick for quite some time (including Friday when I celebrated passing my glucose tolerance test with a small soft serve from Dairy Queen), but still. Popsicles are over-due by at least a month. At least.

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 I knew with sweetened condensed milk that these would be delicious. Paired with a bunch of lime juice and frozen to a creamy, dreamy treat on a stick? Yeah, if you don’t have a popsicle mold…you now need one.

Yes, need. It’s not a want but a necessity.

At the very least, freeze these babies in some dixie cups with some toothpicks and ENJOY. Summer never tasted this good (for reals).

Lime Creamsicles 4

Lime Creamsicles
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
  • 1⅔ cups nonfat milk
  • ½ cup fresh lime juice (from about 6 limes)
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  1. Whisk together ingredients in a medium bowl until well-combined.
  2. Distribute the mixture between each of 10 popsicle mold wells and freeze for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from freezer to insert popsicle sticks two-thirds of the way into the tops of each popsicle and freeze for an additional 6-8 hours or until frozen. Allow to defrost slightly for 5-10 minutes before removing from popsicle mold to serve.
Recipe ever so slightly adapted from Girl Versus Dough
Nutrition Information
Serving size: 1 popsicle Calories: 150 Fat: 3.0 Carbohydrates: 26.2 Sugar: 24.4 Fiber: 0.1 Protein: 4.4 Cholesterol: 11

 This week looks crazy busy and long…waaah. Let’s do it.

Be well,