Friday, August 11, 2017

Spinach & Artichoke Quinoa Bake - and Updates!

Well hello!  Long time no see!
It's been a while since I've posted, and a lot has happened.  I'll fill you in quickly.

To start, I'm just over six months pregnant.  So that happened.  We are super excited about this new bundle of joy, and are looking forward to what the future holds.

Oh, and I'm a vegetarian.  For the time being.  I went and watched What The Health on Netflix and boy did that do a number on me.  It changed my family's eating habits as well - they're still eating meat, but milk?  Not so much.  Watch the documentary, you'll understand.

Anyways I'm hoping the vegetarian thing doesn't stick permanently.  I'd like to get to a place where I am informed about what I am putting into my body, and that includes meat - where the animal was raised, how it was raised, and where it met it's demise.  I'm not there yet, in fact I'm quite enjoying the many vegetarian options, but all in due time.

I made this recipe the other day, and it was delicious.

I changed a couple of things - I used 120g of Edam and 120g of smoked Gouda as my cheese.  And instead of cream cheese I used Sheese Herb & Garlic which is a non-dairy cream cheese-like spread. Other than that I pretty much followed the recipe to a T and it was great!!

Stay tuned for more vegan and vegetarian recipes...and hopefully some carnivorous ones in the near future.

In the meantime, I'll leave you with a pair of shoes that our teenage daughter picked out for the baby today.  So cute...

Monday, February 13, 2017

A Middle-Eastern Feast - Ground Beef with Hummus, Tabbouleh Salad, and Pita

I love Middle Eastern food - the spices warm you up from inside out and this meal is a super quick one to pull together.

I know that most people use couscous for their Tabbouleh, but my new favorite grain is barley, so that;s what I used.  In particular, I prefer Snappy Grains as they have created the only quick-cooking barley on the market.

For the Tabbouleh recipe, check out their website here.  They have a ton of ways you can use this barley, and it's so good for you!!  Just a side note - I always add feta to mine, although in their recipe they say it's optional (but when is cheese ever optional??)

For the ground beef and hummus, I used a recipe I saw on You Gotta Eat Here (best show ever!!) - you can find it here - thanks Dr. Laffa!!

Toast up some pitas, and your meal is ready to go!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Balsamic Honey Chicken Legs With Parmesan Spaghetti Squash

Chicken legs are so quick and easy, and so versatile - they carry flavors well and really, anything goes.  I threw together these balsamic honey legs in a pinch, and added the perfect low carb side dish, spaghetti squash!

For the chicken legs, I seasoned them with seasoning salt and pepper, and roasted them in the oven at 350 for about 40 minutes.  I also had my (whole) squash in there, after being in the microwave for 5 minutes to soften it up a bit.  While those babies were cooking, I made the sauce for my chicken.  I brought 2 cups of chicken stock to a boil, and added 1/2 a cup each of balsamic vinegar and honey.  I let that simmer on low until the chicken was done, and the sauce had thickened.

Once the squash was done, I took it out of the oven, cut it in half, scraped the seeds out, and scraped the flesh into a hot pan.  I added shredded parmesan, and tossed everything together, then at the last minute I added some cherry tomatoes.  I added salt and pepper, and voila!

For the chicken, once taken out of the oven, pour the sauce over top and serve with the squash.  Easy, healthy and delicious!

Oh and there is also baked plantain in the pic - we had some leftovers from another dinner.  Send me a message if you'd like to know how to make them, but they are super simple and you can find many easy ways of preparing them online.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Cheesy BBQ Meatballs With LOW CARB Spaghetti

So I'm completely obsessed with a new-to-me product called Nupasta.  If you haven't tried it, and are living a low-carb lifestyle, I suggest you get to a grocery store stat and pick some up.

Here's a little info on the product taken from their website:

What is Nupasta and how is it different from traditional pasta?
A full plate (210g) of regular cooked pasta contains about 300 calories and 2g of dietary fibre, the same amount of NuPasta contains 25 calories and 6g of dietary fibre.  NuPasta is also gluten free. Regular pasta is made with wheat, a starch that is high in calories.  NuPasta is made with the root of the konjac plant which is rich in dietary fibre and has no starch.  The absence of starch is the reeason why NuPasta is so low in calories.

If you like rice noodles, you'll love NuPasta, and I don't miss real pasta at all anymore!

Moving on, I was in the mood for some serious comfort food, and what's more comforting than spaghetti and meatballs?  I don't really like the traditional tomato sauce though, so I decided to change it up a bit and do more of a bbq sauce.  With cheese.  Lots of cheese.  Particularly this cheese....

Orkney Scottish cheddar is SO good.

I also didn't feel like seasoning my own meatballs, so thank goodness me and Mario are trusty pals...

I used the spicy mix.  This product is also gluten free (like the NuPasta) - and it's delicious!

So here's what I did - 

I mixed up some ground pork and big chunks of Orkney Cheddar with my Mario's Meatball Mix and formed the meat into balls. I reserved some extra meat for the sauce.  I baked them at 350 for 20 minutes,  While they were baking I made the sauce.  I sauteed some onions and peppers in canola oil, and then added the leftover meat.  Once that was cooked up nicely I added a can of tomato sauce and about 1/2 a cup of bbq sauce.  I let it simmer until the meatballs were done, then added the balls into the sauce and let that simmer for about 10 minutes.  I then rinsed my Nupasta off, warmed it up, and topped it with my meatballs and sauce. It was delicious, and was exactly what I was looking for.


Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Feta & Sundried Tomato Stuffed Chicken with Zeroodles - Low Carb & Delicious!

I'm baaaaaack....

I'll keep this short & sweet.  I made an awesome meal the other day, and I had to share.  It came together very quickly, and I didn't really follow a recipe.  It's a super forgiving dish, so play around and use what you have in your fridge (you can change up the cheeses used, or sub the tomatoes for roasted red peppers, add spinach, etc)

Have you heard of Zeroodles??  If you haven't, you're missing out.  This is a new line of dry pastas on the market that are super high in fiber and protein, and low in carbs.  For this recipe I used the Mung Bean Fettuccine, but there are a few others to choose from.  Check it out here.

Check out the nutritional info for only a 1/4c!!!  Amazing

So here's what I did 

I made this sundried tomato marinade and let my 4 bone-in chicken breasts soak in it for about 2 hours.  Then I preheated the oven to 375.  I sliced my chicken pieces in half horizontally almost all the way through, to create a deep pocket.  For my stuffing, I combined chopped sundried tomatoes, shredded fat free swiss cheese, fat free cream cheese, crumbled feta, and black pepper. Measurements aren't important, just eyeball it and make sure you have enough stuffing for all of your chicken.  I secured the stuffed pockets with toothpicks, and put them in a greased baking dish.  In the oven they went for 35 minutes, and then I broiled them for 5 minutes.

For the Zeroodles, I cooked them as per the package directions (boiled them in salted water for 5 minutes) and then tossed them in olive oil and Mayacamas Garden Skillet seasoning.  Delicious.

Quick and easy, and healthy too - enjoy!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken - Made into Two Meals!

My daughter has been making one meal a week and loving every second of it.  Last week she made bacon wrapped stuffed chicken (which I didn't get a picture of) and this week she turned the leftovers into pizza.  These were both super simple recipes but amazing enough to serve company.  The bonus? I'm cooking one night less a week - and she even cleans up after herself!!

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken
6 chicken breasts
6 slices of bacon
salt & pepper
1/2 container of ricotta cheese
1 pack frozen spinach
garlic powder
onion powder

Preheat your oven to 350.  Slice the chicken breasts in half horizontally, but not all the way through, so that you can open them like a hot dog bun.  Mix the last 4 ingredients together and divide amongst the inside of the chicken.  Secure with toothpicks and season with salt and pepper.  Wrap each piece with bacon, and put on a baking sheet.  Bake for 40 minutes in your preheated oven.  We served this with spaghetti squash and steamed brussel sprouts.

Bacon Wrapped Stuffed Chicken Pizza
1 recipe pizza dough (she used this one)
white sauce (she mixed milk & flour together over low heat in a pan and shredded some cheddar cheese into it)
1 leftover wrapped chicken breast, chopped
1 can artichoke hearts chopped up
shredded cheese (she used a mix of cheddar & mozzarella)

Make the dough, chop up the ingredients and top the dough with them - sauce, then chicken, then artichokes, then shredded cheese.  Bake for about 25 minutes at 350 (or until the crust begins to turn golden brown), cut, and eat - delicious!

So there you have it folks - you can re-purpose leftovers into whatever you want, but pizza is always a great choice!

My daughter has informed me that her next meal for us will be shrimp risotto - stay tuned!!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

What Do You Do When You're Craving a Big Mac? Make Big Mac Meatloaf!!

Omg you guys.  I was literally dying for a Big Mac the other day.  I haven't had a Big Mac in over 15 years except for the one I had a few months ago when I had too much to drink the night before and the only option for lunch that day according to my stomach was a Big Mac, like duh.

I had taken out ground beef to defrost for dinner and my original plan was to make meatballs.  Well I wasn't feeling meatballs, I was feeling a Big Mac.  It was seriously a toss up between throwing the towel in to cooking all together and walking across the street to McDonalds, or figuring something out at home that would satisfy my craving.  I really wanted to walk across the street...

And then I found this recipe, and I am pleased to say this will definitely be on the dinner rotation!  It was a huge hit, the mac sauce was bang on, I didn't spend any extra money eating out, and I had full control over the ingredients - total win win win!!!

Get the recipe here.  Like right now.  Make it now.  So good!!!  Thank you for introducing this recipe to me!!!