Wednesday, April 23, 2014

quinoa beef vegetable soup

I stumbled upon this recipe by adding ingredients that we had on hand. I even had it as an after-hours snack in lieu of my usual bowl of ice cream (it turned out that good- or just happened to really satisfy an intense craving for vege'bles).

Here's what went into it--

1 lb ground beef
5 cups water
2 beef bouillon cubes (to be dissolved in 4 cups water)
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 medium onion, chopped
3-4 medium potatoes, cut into 1" cubes
1 yellow bell pepper, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
1 large tomato, chopped
1 cup cooked quinoa
1 tsp cumin
salt and pepper to taste
fresh basil, chopped (I used freeze dried)

I don't think there was any rhyme or reason to the how or order of things going in. Just how I thought best. And I think this would actually be a good crock pot meal with the ground beef replaced with cubed beef (and the cooked quinoa reserved until the end- or added, uncooked, in the beginning). I have to add, too, that I got "Thank yous" from at least two of the four kids for making this meal tonight.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

oatmeal blueberry applesauce muffins

Look at me! Posting a recipe for the first time in our new house, and we've been here since mid-October! I think this is going to be a new norm- posting every half a year or so, just so we're clear. But the muffins we made this morning were killer and healthy, so I wanted to share. Or rather, post it on here so I'll remember it when I'm wondering about how I made them later, as I'm sure that Kaethe and I are the only readers by now, but only because we get these in our inboxes. At least I do, though I'm not sure how I managed that.

Yes, we're still hanging on to Christmas around here.

Oatmeal blueberry applesauce muffins. I may have made something similar before, but I can't remember. The kids and I polished off eight of the twelve soon after they came out of the oven. Five of those may have been me, but I did share quite a bit with Opal.


1 1/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/4 cups oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup low-fat buttermilk
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 tbsp canola oil
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Line muffin pan with paper liners or spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl combine flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. In a medium bowl combine applesauce, buttermilk, sugar, oil and egg. Add applesauce mixture and stir until just moist. Fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.

Bake for 16-18 minutes.


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

apple roses

I got the idea from this blog to make these lovely apple roses in honor of Opal's feast day (St. Therese of Lisieux) today. Aren't they awesome?! I didn't have any puff pastry dough, but I do know how to make a pretty good pie crust (thanks, Mom!), so I subbed that. The crust didn't hold up maybe quite as well as puff pastries would have, but it mostly got the job done. Opal, of course, got to enjoy some, too (chopped into little bit)-- her first "official" treat.

enough dough to make two pie crusts
3 Apples - I used honeycrisp
4 cups Water
3 Tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons lemon juice

4 Tablespoons Sugar
2 teaspoons Cinnamon
1 pinch Nutmeg
1 teaspoon Lemon Zest
Powdered Sugar for dusting (optional)
Parchment Paper

Wash and core the apples. Slice very thin- about 1/8 inch slices. Place water, 3 TBSP sugar, lemon juice, and apples in medium pot and bring to a boil for 3-4 minutes, or until apples soften and can easily bend. Strain apples and let cool in a colander. Place apples on paper towels to cool and dry completely. While the apples are cooling, prepare the crust and roll it out into a large rectangle. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a bowl and sprinkle over the crust, pressing it down slightly. Cut the crust into 1/2" strips with a pizza cutter. Arrange about 7-8 apple slices aong the first strip, overlapping as you go to create the "petals." Roll the apples up in the strip of crust (fairly tightly so the apples don't fall out). COntinue with the remainder of the apples. Place on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper. Bake at 425 for 30 minutes or until golden. Enjoy!

Monday, September 9, 2013

fresh melon with cilantro

I've had a lot of things on my to-post list these past few months, but I thought this one was too good to pass up getting on here for a couple of minutes to share. A couple of weeks ago, I did a search for foods that were good for energy, as I've been zapped lately. Melon of any kind ranked high on the list, as they're packed with energizing vitamins and minerals. And their high water content fights fatigue by keeping you hydrated. I believe it. I've been trying to find ways to spruce it up a bit, and I saw several recipes online that added cilantro and lemon juice- and some onions, so I gave it a go. I just cut up some in a bowl and added what I thought to be a balanced amount of lemon juice, diced red onion and cilantro. I also saw mint in some recipes, which sounds yummy, but I didn't have any of that on hand.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Kielbasa potato cabbage soup

In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I made an Irish-sounding soup. Aside from a bit of chopping, it was easy- basically, just put everything in a pot and let simmer. I thought it was pretty good, but then, I liked everything that went into it. And I doubled almost everything that went into it, since we had company and like leftovers-- we ended up with quite a bit extra.


1 small head cabbage, coarsely chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
4 to 6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cups water
3 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 to 2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 pound smoked kielbasa or Polish sausage, halved, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
4 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
3 large carrots, chopped ( didn't have any carrots, so we did without)
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
1/2 teaspoon pepper


In a large pot, saute the cabbage, onion and garlic in oil for 5 minutes or until tender. Combine the water, vinegar and brown sugar; add to cabbage mixture.

Stir in remaining ingredients. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 60-70 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

recipe adapted from taste of home

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

slow cooker Thai yellow curry

From 01/12/2013 (by Eye-Fi)
I served this flavorful dish over short grain brown rice with a cucumber/grated carrots/green onions salad with cashews and a dressing of soy sauce, lime juice, white sugar and red wine vinegar...delicious!


8 chicken thighs, (with skin and bones) (I used 2 lbs of chicken breasts, as a.) we didn't have thighs, and b.) we generally like breasts better)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tbsp minced fresh ginger
1 can coconut milk (I used TJ's "lite")
1 jar yellow curry sauce
1 tsp grated lime zest
1 tbsp lime juice
1 sweet red pepper, chopped
1 cup green beans, trimmed
1/4 cup raisins
2 tbsp chopped fresh cilantro


Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper.

In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; brown chicken, in batches if necessary. Transfer to slow cooker. Drain fat from skillet.

Add chicken, onion, garlic, ginger, cocnut milk, curry sauce, lime zest, lime juice to slow cooker. Cover and cook on low until juices run clear when chicken is pierced, about 4 hours.

Stir in red pepper, green beans and raisins; cook, covered, on high until pepper is tender-crisp, about 30 minutes. Serve sprinkled with cilantro.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Mexican wedding cakes (cookies)

From December 12, 2012
Our homeschooling group is having an Our Lady of Guadalupe Fiesta tomorrow with a Mexican potluck. I wanted to bring something Mexican, but all of the go-to simple items were covered. I was looking for something quick and easy to make, since I was trying to nurse and put a newborn to sleep around the same time (sometimes it takes ALL evening). These Mexican wedding cakes looked just the thing. And they were.


1/2 pound (1 cups) butter, softened
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup toasted pecans, chopped very fine or ground in a food processor
1 cup confectioners' (powdered) sugar for dusting and rolling


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper. In a large mixing bowl with beater attachment, beat butter on medium speed until fluffy. Add confectioners' sugar and beat again until smooth.

Scrape down sides of bowl. Add vanilla and salt, beat and scrape down once more. Turn mixer to low, add flour and ground toasted pecans. Beat only until incorporated and mixed well. Scrape bowl.

Using a medium sized cookie scoop or Tablespoon, scoop cookie dough onto prepared baking sheets, leaving a little room between each ball. Do not flatten.

Bake in 350 degree over for 14 minutes or until cookies are almost firm and the edges are lightly browned. Let cool just enough to handle.

Remove from oven and as soon as you can handle them, gently roll the cookies into the remaining 1 cup confectioners' sugar. Tap off sugar and place them on a cool cookie sheet.

When the cookies are all coated, start over again, and roll them in powdered sugar a second time. Shake off excess and place on cookie sheets.

I made mine a tad small, as I was trying to make more, but this should yield 30 cakes (I made 35).

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

(Relatively) Healthy Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Muffins

I made these for Brinnly's fifth birthday and they quickly became a hit here.  Almost as good as a oatmeal cookie, but socially acceptable to eat for breakfast!

Monday, October 15, 2012

rerun: pumpkin sausage pasta

From October 11, 2012
This is one of my favorite fall dishes... so, worth posting again. Really anything pumpkin falls into that category.

Friday, October 12, 2012

My new tool

Plan to Eat is my new endeavor.  Anyone else out there using this tool to plan their meals?  My goal is to plan for a month of meals total, with grocery shopping only every two weeks.   Wish me luck!