Here is another healthier take on a favorite 'take-out fake-out' or restaurant 'copy cat' kind of recipe. There's this chain Italian style restaurant that serves these amazing 'Sicilian Fire Sticks' (or at least they used to the last time I went there - well over a year ago now.) They were always one of my most favorite things to order.
These fire sticks are large and in charge and full of flavor. And considering that one of my complete fire sticks is less calories than the original restaurant's tortilla alone... I think I'll stick to staying at home and making these for myself.
For those of you that aren't familiar with what a fire stick is, it's basically an Italian version of flautas or taquitos. A crispy tortilla surrounding a yummy mixture of meats, pepper, and melted cheese.
Lightening these fire sticks up was extremely easy. The first thing I did was to swap out that monster of a tortilla used for a lighter multi-grain version. There was only 100 calories in each of the giant tortillas that I used here. Plus, they were high in fiber and full of grain goodness.
The next thing was to swap out the Italian sausage for a lean turkey Italian sausage, which is never minded or noticed in my house. Extra lean ground chicken is another must here, and reduced fat finely shredded Italian cheese (the regular shred version doesn't melt as well.) The bacon? Low sodium center cut bacon is a must! It's my most favorite kind of bacon because it's still pork and doesn't really taste much different than the real deal.
Of course, you know there is no reason to fry these either. I got an amazing crisp on mine in the rather hot oven that could rival that of their fried brethren.
I served mine 'restaurant style' with a side of marinara and light yogurt ranch sauce for dipping, just because that's what I'm used to having them with. But, any sort of sauce you like (or none at all) would be just as great.
In the midst of eating these, I was told that they are really good and with much amazement. Honestly, I was a bit surprised at how close they tasted to the real thing myself! Yum.
Skinny Italian 'Fire Sticks'
Servings: 6 • Size: 1 'Fire Stick' • Calories: 205.2 • Fat: 7.9 g • Carb: 21.3 g • Fiber: 12.6 g • Protein: 23.2 g • Sugar: 2.7 g • Sodium: 556.3 mg
1/4 Lb. Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage, Removed from Casing
3 Oz. Extra Lean Ground Chicken
1/2 C. Onion, Chopped
2 Garlic Cloves, Minced
1/2 Jalapeno, Seeded & Diced
1/4 C. + 2 Tbsp. Italian Cheese
3 Strips Center Cut Low Sodium Bacon, Cooked & Crumbled
1/2 Roma Tomato, Diced
6 High Fiber Multi-Grain Olive Oil Tortillas
Optional Dipping Sauces: Marinara, Light Ranch
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. and line a baking sheet with foil; set aside.
Place the 1/4 Lb. sausage, 3 Oz. ground chicken, 1/2 C. onion, 2 garlic cloves and 2 Tbsp. jalapeño into a skillet together and cook over medium-high heat.
Cook until the meat is browned and cooked through and the vegetables are all nice and tender.
Once done, remove from the heat and add in the 1/4 C. + 2 Tbsp. cheese, crumbled bacon, and 2 Tbsp. tomato.
Warm the tortillas in the microwave to soften slightly if needed.
Place about 1/4 C. of the mixture into the center of each tortilla and roll it up nice and tightly.
Place the tortillas onto the prepared baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes or until starting to brown and crisp.
Once done, remove from the oven and enjoy right away with your choice of sauce.
Traditionally the sauces I like are marinara and/or a light ranch!