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Cottage Cheese Perk Ups

JungMann Jun 18, 2008 06:45 AM

In an effort to eat more healthily I've been trying to snack less on items like brie or deep-fried anything and more on lowfat cottage cheese. At first I was fine with the taste, but it is starting to get a little boring. I've tried seasoning it with peppers, sambal and pesto, none of which did much good. Anyone have any tips on how to perk up a cup of 0-1% cottage cheese? No sweet or fruity suggestions, please; I'm not a fan of the combination.

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  1. d
    dkenworthy RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 06:57 AM

    When I have top quality home grown tomatoes, there is nothing better than dicing up a tomato and combining it with cottage cheese. A little salt and pepper, heaven. When I can't get good tomatoes, I sometimes substitute good canned salsa (I like Mrs. Renfros). Sometimes I use celery salt for something a little different.

    I know you don't want sweet/fruity, but I also like to use up my leftover cranberry sauce (at the holidays) by adding it to cottage cheese. Sweet/tart/creamy.

    1 Reply
    1. re: dkenworthy
      JungMann RE: dkenworthy Jun 19, 2008 06:14 AM

      Tomatoes are still out of season in my parts, but I did try the recommendation of celery salt which was a little more salt than I want to be eating, but when I switched to plain old celery seed, I was hooked. I ate half the package. I'm not sure whether to thank you or to curse you!

    2. f
      fern RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 06:59 AM

      I use it as dip with oven baked sweet potato wedges or wide planks that I've seasoned up like mad with cajun seasoning or something with lots of flavor. Very filling and tasty snack or meal.

      When I want to grab something quick I squeeze some hot sauce onto the cheese.

      I am an olive fiend so I sometimes just toss in some kalamata olives, or sometimes green olives and walnuts.

      1. sheilal RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 08:02 AM

        I mix cottage cheese with pressed garlic and eat it over shredded lettuce. There's a local Mexican restaurant that serves it that way and I loved it so much I just had to copy it. For the standard tall container of cottage cheese, I add 4-5 cloves of garlic (I LOVE garlic) put through a garlic press and a touch of garlic salt and about 1-1.5 t. garlic powder. It's imperative that you not use jarred garlic. It imparts a weird taste IMO. Spoon this over shredded lettuce and sprinkle with a bit of reduced calorie Mexican-blend cheese. Sometimes I also top it with a little salsa and have the Lays Baked Scoops handy.

        4 Replies
        1. re: sheilal
          JungMann RE: sheilal Jul 17, 2008 07:11 AM

          I cannot believe how good this is. And it's so flavorful and satisfying even when I buy the low-fat, low-sodium cheese. I've had this for lunch or dinner at least 3 times a week since your recommendation. Thanks!

          1. re: JungMann
            sheilal RE: JungMann Jul 17, 2008 02:25 PM

            I'm so glad you like it. Have you noticed how much "deeper" the flavor gets when it sits in the fridge overnight? I'm having this tonight for dinner and it's so low-cal, that I can actually have a bit of dessert without blowing my diet.

            1. re: sheilal
              JungMann RE: sheilal Jul 18, 2008 06:44 AM

              I will have to try "aging" it! Normally I only make as much as I want to eat because otherwise I will devour the whole tub (as I did the first time I made it).

              1. re: JungMann
                alkapal RE: JungMann Jul 18, 2008 07:13 AM

                i'm gonna have to try this now....

        2. m
          mangiamama RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 08:44 AM

          Have not tried this, but June 2008 fitness magazine suggested: 1/4 cup low fat cottage cheese mixed with 1 tablespoon fresh chopped chives spread on whole grain crackers.

          2 Replies
          1. re: mangiamama
            j
            jacquelyncoffey RE: mangiamama Jun 18, 2008 03:17 PM

            Cottage cheese with fresh chives is divine! I keep a pot growing pretty much for that reason alone. Add some fresh diced tomato - yum! Don't even bother trying to use the freeze-dried chives.

            1. re: jacquelyncoffey
              DockPotato RE: jacquelyncoffey Jun 21, 2008 11:15 AM

              Fresh chives and cottage cheese is one of my favourite breakfasts, but with one important addition - sprinkle some good paprika on the curds before you add the chives.

          2. g
            Gail RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 09:08 AM

            Top cottage cheese with sliced avocado and sprinkle with Lawrys Season Salt.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Gail
              alkapal RE: Gail Jul 17, 2008 09:42 PM

              lawry's seasoned salt rocks on cottage cheese.

            2. danhole RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 09:19 AM

              Mix some mashed avocado in it. Sounds weird, tastes good. I season it with a bit of Nature's Seasoning and dill weed. Fresh dill is best.

              1 Reply
              1. re: danhole
                JungMann RE: danhole Jun 18, 2008 09:43 AM

                I've done that, with a little bit of tuna, usually from salad bars in NYC. It's surprisingly good.

              2. ipsedixit RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 09:26 AM

                Top with some strong dijon mustard, or sprinkle on some nori flakes.

                2 Replies
                1. re: ipsedixit
                  JungMann RE: ipsedixit Jun 18, 2008 09:43 AM

                  Nori sounds like a great idea. Maybe with a little bit of sesame, or something tangy?

                  1. re: JungMann
                    ipsedixit RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 02:37 PM

                    Yup exactly.

                    I usually buy these nori mixes that have sesame seeds from local Japanese markets.

                2. l
                  lexpatti RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 09:31 AM

                  sounds weird but peanut butter mixed in is awesome. I get the peanut butter pwder, cutting the fat a lot more.
                  http://www.bellplantation.com/

                  I almost always have cc with salsa or just spike seasoning.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: lexpatti
                    Infomaniac RE: lexpatti Jun 18, 2008 02:41 PM

                    I love cottage cheese and peanut butter on a rolled up piece of lettuce or a celery stick.

                    1. re: lexpatti
                      JungMann RE: lexpatti Jun 19, 2008 06:09 AM

                      I tried this last night and was surprised at what a great combination it is! I would never have mixed the two together! I'm already trying to think up a peanut buttery, salty-sweet dessert to surprise friends with this combo. Thanks!

                    2. s
                      SSqwerty RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 09:40 AM

                      I like it mixed with drained tuna in water. Spread it on cuke slices....mmmmm!

                      1. v
                        vballgal RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 10:09 AM

                        i second the rec for cottage cheese, tomatoes and a little salt. i also love throwing in some nuts - usually walnuts or almonds for another healthy snack and i mixing in peanutbutter is awesome too. enjoy!

                        1. DanaB RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 10:18 AM

                          Here's a link to a thread from last fall on how to "jazz up" cottage cheese with 70 suggestions:

                          http://www.chowhound.com/topics/359832

                          Personally, I like it with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, salt and a little cracked pepper.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: DanaB
                            Ruth Lafler RE: DanaB Jun 19, 2008 11:18 AM

                            Exactly. I was going to suggest lemon pepper -- cottage cheese really benefits from some acidity.

                            Another suggestion, though: the taste and texture of cottage cheese varies significantly from brand to brand. If you haven't checked out all the brands available in your area you should do so before you settle on one.

                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                              danhole RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 20, 2008 01:40 PM

                              So true Ruth! Personally I like the Lucerne brand. I tried the new Daisy cottage cheese and it was almost a powdery curd in a milky sauce. Didn't care for it at all. But if you are watching your sodium, look at the sodium before you buy. Some of them are higher in sodium than others.

                          2. s
                            smtucker RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 03:05 PM

                            I love to add some chopped olives. Gives me a salty blast and some crunch.

                            1. jeni1002 RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 03:06 PM

                              Mix with:
                              * Feta and dill for a creamy spread
                              * Cucumbers & radishes
                              Try different 'bases' - Ryvita crackers, pitas, different kinds of bread - the taste will change.

                              1. l
                                laliz RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 03:50 PM

                                I read all three threads and only saw one suggestion for Thousand Island so I thought I'd add my fave. Add a bit of 1000 Island dressing and sprinkle with sunflower kernels.

                                Use the ff 1000 island or low fat

                                1. c
                                  cakesncookies RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 04:27 PM

                                  My aunt makes a really good spinach and ground beef lasauna using cottage cheese. Of course she uses other cheese too or it might be a little bland, but at least the cottage cheese can act as a substitute for some of the higher fat cheeses.

                                  I heard that CI has a really good recipe for low fat cheesecake that uses cottage cheese, but I haven't tried it yet.

                                  1. m
                                    Muskrat RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 04:51 PM

                                    When I was growing up, I thought that cottage cheese came from the cow with chives included, it was such a regular on our family table.

                                    Maybe a little onion salt instead.

                                    1. Emme RE: JungMann Jun 18, 2008 08:40 PM

                                      For savory, I love the simplicity of salsa mixed in.

                                      For a baba ghanoushy treat, try some mashed grilled eggplant, tahini and parsley mixed in.

                                      Also, chopped cucumer, dill, tomatoes, and feta if you like it.

                                      1. o
                                        Orchid64 RE: JungMann Jun 19, 2008 06:35 AM

                                        I love cottage cheese with Guiltless Gourmet tortilla chips. They're baked and have very little oil so they're not bad for you. The "mucho nacho" ones go particularly well with cottage cheese.

                                        I also like to have cottage cheese sprinkled in salads (esp. with Caesar dressing and croûtons). In fact, croûtons are really good in cottage cheese by themselves. Anything salty is a good mix.

                                        1. l
                                          lexpatti RE: JungMann Jun 19, 2008 06:49 AM

                                          I forgot that I eat this almost every morning - cottage cheese and chili sauce drizzled on top (or cocktail sauce if I'm out of chili sauce).

                                          1. b
                                            beggsy RE: JungMann Jun 19, 2008 11:02 AM

                                            I do love the tomato/cottage cheese mix but my favourite is cottage cheese with a side of dill pickles.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: beggsy
                                              puzzler RE: beggsy Jun 19, 2008 01:39 PM

                                              Lots of freshly ground black pepper -- I mean LOTS, about 4 times as much as I'd usually put something else.

                                            2. othervoice RE: JungMann Jun 19, 2008 02:14 PM

                                              I haven't had this in a long time but I lived on it for many summers. Sounded weird to me at first but it's great with scoops, fritos, nachos, and by itself.

                                              Small curd only, and it has to be a very good brand.
                                              Add:
                                              Chopped bell peppers
                                              green onions
                                              garlic powder
                                              pepper (generously)
                                              and a 1/4 c. mayo (I use Light Hellmans/Best Foods) A little less/more to taste.
                                              a couple of shots of hot sauce to taste (optional)

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: othervoice
                                                Cheflambo RE: othervoice Jun 19, 2008 02:23 PM

                                                I like the pickles and/or olive suggestions - will try those next.

                                                My favorite combo with cottage cheese is diced red pepper and/or cucumbers. In fact, I always have a jar filled with diced red pepper / onion / cucumber / carrot marinating in vinegar in my fridge, I make this once in a while (whenever Im in the mood to chop) and it lasts about 2 weeks. I put it on salads, cottage cheese, or anything else that needs a little zing. Whenever I see something in the fridge that might "go" before I have a chance to use it, it gets chopped and added to the "pickle" jar.

                                              2. LAcupcake RE: JungMann Jun 19, 2008 02:29 PM

                                                I eat cottage cheese for breakfast every single morning (and sorry, i'm a sweet person so usually with berries or crunchy cereal). My very favorite is with fresh figs, honey and sesame seeds. A few non sweet uses I've found not mentioned yet are stirred into scrambles or in an omelette (as a sort of ricotta substitute). My mom always made these killer cottage cheese pancakes growing up (from the Vegetarian Epicure cookbook) that tasted like a french toast/pancake hybrid. And as everyone else says... dips! You can do a great version of spinach dip with carmelized onions, garlic, spinach and anchovy with cottage cheese (or plain greek yogurt) and an avocado in the food processor.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: LAcupcake
                                                  l
                                                  lvnvflyer RE: LAcupcake Jun 20, 2008 12:09 PM

                                                  I like cottage cheese with tomatos, cukes, onions, avocados, all salad veggies and then italian dressing (wishbone low fat). Or, balsamic vinegar. Yummy.. Of course, for a less low fat treat, cottage cheese, sour cream, garlic salt, all combined with lettuce, radishes, cukes, toms, and onions...we called in Farmer's Chop Suey when I was growing up. So tasty in the summer

                                                2. n
                                                  NE_Elaine RE: JungMann Jun 20, 2008 01:51 PM

                                                  I have had a nice dip with cottage cheese, horseradish and green onions. Scoop it up with crackers or toast - yummy!

                                                  1. l
                                                    lexpatti RE: JungMann Jun 20, 2008 06:48 PM

                                                    Oh another great dip is that Harry & David's Pepper & Onion Relish mixed with cottage cheese. Fantastic.
                                                    http://www.harryanddavid.com/gifts/st...

                                                    1. s
                                                      Spot RE: JungMann Jul 17, 2008 08:08 AM

                                                      My family always put the cottage cheese in a blender/processor, added a splash of milk, lots of gr. black pepper, about 1 T caraway seeds, salt, and a small pinch of sugar, processed to a sort of dippy consistencey, then stirred in a lot of snipped chives and served it on buttered rye/pumperknickel (sp?).

                                                      I thought this was unique but it seems to be a family riff on sort of a non-traditional liptauer thing, which makes sense since my folks are off-the-boat German immigrants.

                                                      1. boogiebaby RE: JungMann Jul 17, 2008 02:05 PM

                                                        I use cottage cheese on my alternative bagel (low carb) instead of cream cheese. It's great with salt and pepper.

                                                        I also like cottage cheese on a slice of toast spread with Marmite -- yum!

                                                        1. s
                                                          sophia519 RE: JungMann Jul 17, 2008 04:59 PM

                                                          Like others have mentioned: tomato wedges, lots of pepper and sunflower kernels. Love it!

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