Posted in Recipes

Vegetarian Chicken Noodle Soup

To continue with a classic soup I can’t help but mention the heart warming old stand by, chicken noodle soup. I have made this with all kinds of substitute for a vegetarian friendly versions but I think this one is just about as close to classic meat version.

Now I don’t know if all the benefits of actual chicken soup applies because the meat is not present so you don’t get the benefit of the marrow but this still has the carrots, potatoes, celery, broth and herbs. It still lifts the spirit and warms the heart, plus it still counts as a great soup for certain diets.

All you need is a few ingredients and voila you have a quick comfort soup. I did make my own egg dumpling noodles but you can just as easily use packaged noodles.

Vegetarian Chicken Noodle:

Makes 3-4 servings

6 cups of water

2 -3 Tablespoons of veggie chicken broth base (you can use vegetable bouillon but I and liked the vegan chicken broth for this.)

1-2 carrots cut into bite size pieces

1 small potato cut into bite size pieces ( I’m a savage and did not peel it)

1 small onion diced

1-2 stalks of celery diced

2-3 cloves of garlic diced

1 tablespoon of olive oil

Per your taste, black pepper, salt (unless your bouillon is salty then leave out the salt) 1-2 bay leaves, rosemary and parsley

2 Quorn meatless fillets

egg noodles per you taste

In a large pot on medium/high heat add oil, onion, celery and garlic. Sauté until the onion is almost translucent. Add water, bouillon and remaining ingredients bring to a boil then turn to low and simmer for about 15 minutes remove fillets cut into bite size pieces, return them to the soup add noodles and cook for 15-25 more minutes depending on the type of noodle you are using. ( if you are using package noodles please follow the directions on the package.)

Remove from heat and serve, enjoy!

Basic Noodles:

2 1/2 cups of flour

Pinch of sea salt or pink Himalayan salt

2 eggs

1/2 cup of milk

1 tablespoon of butter

I like to do this on the counter but if you like you may use a bowl. Add flour and salt mix together then make a well in the center of the flour add eggs and mix well start folding in flour mixture just a little at a time then stop add butter then mix more flour and finally add milk folding and mixing in remaining flour mixture until you have a ball.

Posted in Recipes

Crockpot Potato Soup

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I love potato soup! It is one of the best soups in my opinion so when the weather gets cool I am always making it but I don’t usually veer off  from the old stand by recipe but when I wanted to use my crockpot and I had a can of Campbell’s cheddar soup I thought I would try something different and I am so glad I did!

Todays recipe is definitely not a healthy recipe by any stretch of the imagination but it’s so very good, plus easy with such little clean up and a great hot meal to come home to or maybe get up from the couch when binge watching your favorite streaming service.

Crockpot potato soup:

4 medium to large potatoes cleaned and cut up in bite sized pieces (also pealed if you prefer)

Milk (enough to cover cut up potatoes) I used alternative to dairy but any will be good

1 Tablespoon of Butter

2 Tablespoons of cornstarch

Salt, Pepper, Garlic and Onion powder, dried Parsley all per your taste

1 can of Cheddar soup

In crockpot:

Place cut potatoes in crockpot then cover with milk add butter, cornstarch and seasoning. Cover and simmer on low for at least 6 hours or when potatoes are almost tender. Add can of cheddar soup stirring well then cover with crockpot still on low for 1 more hour.

The soup will come out so creamy and ready to eat,  serve with additional grated cheese on top of soup if desired then enjoy by its self or a nice warm piece of bread. This is such a great meal on a cool day/night.

Posted in Recipes

Veggie Meatloaf with Cauliflower Rice Broccoli Gratin

I think you either like meatloaf or loathe it and think it taste like the medieval dish some say it came from. I am one of those that really enjoy it and being a vegetarian I am always looking for great ways to make it, from beans and legumes to whey and other protein. Some of these would turn out great while others would fall apart or not taste so great. So when I came across a new but processed meatless meat I thought I would try it out for meatloaf. I kept the recipe for this meatless meat loaf classic all except the fact it is vegetarian friendly.

To go along the meatloaf is a great twist to comfort food side dish instead of rice or potatoes, it is cauliflower rice with broccoli and instead of cheese from cows this cheese is still creamy but from cashews. Now before I loose you with that just read the recipe and hopefully try it but if all else subsite with real cheese, I am sure it will still be delicious.

Meatless Meatloaf:

1 14 ounce pack of shredded meatless ground ( I used Meatless Farm)

1 large egg

1/2 to 2/3 cup of breadcrumbs ( the amount is up to how firm your meatless ground is)

1 small white onion minced

3-4 cloves of garlic minced

1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce ( if you don’t eat meat make sure you use a vegetarian friendly version)

Salt, black pepper, onion and garlic powder per taste

Ketchup for on top

In a bowl add all ingredients except ketchup, mix well, form into a loaf then place into a lightly coated (spray or greased) loaf pan. Poke three holes down the center pour ketchup on top spread around. Bake covered for 35-40 minutes then uncovered for 15 minutes.

Cauliflower Rice Broccoli Gratin:

3/4 cup raw cashews

1/4 cup + 3 tablespoon nutritional yeast

3/4 teaspoon sea salt

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1 medium cauliflower (3 cups) ( can use already frozen cauliflower rice)

2 tablespoon olive oil

4 cloves of garlic chopped

1/4 cup arrow root ( can use cornstarch)

2 cups unsweetened almond milk

1/2 black pepper

2 cups chopped broccoli

To make vegan cheese – cashews, yeast, salt, garlic powder in a food processor blend together, then set a side. ( omit this step if using other cheese)

Turn cauliflower into rice or if you are using already frozen cauliflower rice move on to next step.

In sauce pan add oil, arrow root (cornstarch) then milk. Stirring some while it thickens then add cheese. In lightly greased 9×13 pan add cauliflower rice and broccoli pour over the cheese sauce. Bake at 375 for 25-30 minutes

Remove meatloaf and cauliflower rice dish from oven, slice/scoop and enjoy!

Posted in Recipes

Blueberry Bread Pudding with Lemon Sauce

To me nothing says cooler weather dessert than bread pudding. I have always enjoyed bread pudding but when the nights get cooler and the days of Fall are here or almost here my enjoyment for this little dessert really kicks in. Now that Blueberries are still good and cheep I thought combining the two would be a great recipe to share and why not add a little bitt of Summer with the lemon so we can welcome in the Fall but with most of us are still warm this sauce is perfect for on top.

I thought that with muti-grain or brown bread with plant milk and not refined sugar makes this dessert bordering on the edge of almost healthy, not to mention the blueberries. Blueberries are low in calories but high in antioxidants. They may help with lowering your blood pressure and cholesterol plus helping prevent heart disease and cancer. I am thinking not to bad to name a few benefits in this dessert and if eaten with in reason not to bad for the waist line.

Blueberry Bread Pudding:

Ingredients:


8 large eggs, lightly beaten


2½ cups unsweetened almond or oat milk


¼ cup pure maple syrup or 3/4 cup unrefined sugar


1 tsp. pure vanilla extract


1 tsp. ground nutmeg

Pinch of sea salt (or Himalayan salt)


8 slices sprouted whole-grain bread, cut into 1-inch cubes


2-3 cups fresh (or frozen) blueberries

Preheat oven 350
Combine eggs, almond milk, maple syrup, extract, nutmeg, and salt in a
medium bowl; whisk to blend. Set aside.
Place bread and blueberries in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish or Dutch oven that is lightly
buttered.
Top with egg mixture; mix well to blend. Refrigerate, covered, for 30
minutes.

Place baking dish in roasting pan. Add water to roasting pan to come an
inch up the side of baking dish. (Baking dish will be sitting in water.)
Tent aluminum foil over roasting pan so that foil does not touch bread
pudding. Cut two slashes in foil to allow steam to escape. Bake for 35
minutes.
Remove foil. Bake an additional 35 to 45 minutes, or until bread pudding
is puffy and custard is set.

You may serve and enjoy as is or top with the lemon sauce.

Basic Lemon Sauce:

1 cup of water

1 tablespoon of butter

2 tablespoon of lemon juice ( or I use pure lemon essential oil)

1 tablespoon of grated lemon rind

1/2 cup sugar

1 tablespoon of cornstarch

pinch of salt

optional nutmeg per you taste

In a bowl add sugar, cornstarch, salt and nutmeg sift together until smooth. In a sauce pan add butter and lemon rind melt them together. Add water, lemon juice (or essential oil) bring to a boil slowly add the sugar. Continue to slowly stir on a low boil until sauce gets thickens. Remove of heat pore over bread pudding directly or store in container for no more than 5 days.

Posted in Recipes

Peanut Butter Apple

I don’t have children at home that go to school anymore but I know how the end of Summer can be for parents. The lazy summer days will give way to a busy schedule that starts way to early for most parents and last long into the night.

I honestly can say I don’t miss the back to school shopping and the dreaded home work that could turn a wonderful evening into one that made getting your teeth pulled look like a walk in the park.

I do miss the after school stories I got to hear as my kids would have their snack. The snack that I would have to get very creative with. I had a tall order it had to fill up growing kids and yet tasty enough to be enjoyed.

So for todays recipe it is such a quick simple snack that can be for after school or to take it along for a great healthy snack when you’re out. I had it as a kid (thank you mom) and my kids loved it and in fact still do.

Peanut butter has such a wide range of health benefits. From reducing the risk of diabetes, to heart health, high blood pressure, to even helping aide in decreasing the risk of contracting viral or fungal infections! You also get some pretty good protein. I could go on with the benefits but the fact that it helps with viral or fungal infections should be enough for you to load up on peanut butter with the season of spreading germs just around the corner.

My daughter with a peanut allergy didn’t miss out, I used almond, soy or cashew butter to just name a few and even if you are not allergic they are great to try.

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The Peanut Butter Apple:

Wash the apple, remove the core then replace with peanut butter or peanut butter alternative.

It is that simple and such a great health quick snack that looks cute too.

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In case you need more inspiration:

10 Healthy and Tasty Treats (kid approved)

  1. Plain Greek yogurt with honey…some extra options are fruit and trail mix layered like a parfait
  2. Chia Seed Pudding full of omega 3 and when you make it with your kids it turns into a great science project because these great little seeds really expand!
  3. Toasted Pumpkin Seeds, so full of calcium, magnesium and potassium and you can’t get any more back to school and Fall than this.
  4. Apple Sauce and get creative make your own with other fruits like Pears or peaches.
  5. Homemade Trail mix this is great on its own or add it to the Greek Yogurt.
  6. Smoothies, you can get creative and cheaper when you use frozen.
  7. Veggies and Hummus, great source of fiber
  8. Baked Apple, Kale, Sweet Potato or Beet chips
  9. This is my favorite, one I had as a kid and got the recipe from the Television show Mr. Rogers. He made them and so I call them

Mr. Roger Treats

1 cup of peanut butter or any nut butter

1 cup of raisins

1 of dates

A scoop of butter

Mix all the above ingredients into balls the roll the balls into graham cracker crumbs. Place in a container and refrigerate.

Posted in Recipes

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese

My favorite time of year is almost here! I love the Fall and all things that come with it, so to share some recipes that have a touch of warm and cozy with healthy is even better. Squash is always a favorite for me and I don’t think you can get anymore of a comfort food than mac and cheese. To combine these is just the recipe for me to share. I did not come up with this great recipe, I wish I had but it comes from Beachbody and fits the 2B mindset from Ilana Muhlstein, it is only 300 calories per serving so it is a win win all around in my book.

I have been on my health journey for over three years and am happy to share that I am at a point in this new normal of mine that I have a streaming service to workout in my home plus I run a fitness group online for those who are health challenged and needing guidance plus it is always a great way to swap good recipes, struggles and wins. I will continue to share off and on my health journey and recipes that I find or come up with but I hope you enjoy and try todays.

Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese:

INGREDIENTS:

1lb dry whole-wheat macaroni

1 tsp. olive oil

1 medium onion chopped

2 medium red bell peppers chopped

3 cups cubed butternut squash

1 3/4 lo- sodium organic chicken broth ( used veggie broth)

1 cup low-fat milk ( or plant based worked too)

2 Tbsp. lo-fat plain Greek yogurt

1 cup shredded Gruyere or Swiss cheese (again you can substitute plant base for both cheeses)

1 cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Sea salt and ground black pepper per taste

Finely chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional)

( if you use Nonstick cooking spray)

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375° F.

Cook macaroni according to package directions. Drain and set aside. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and bell peppers; cook, stirring frequently, for 4 to 6 minutes, or until onion is translucent. Set aside. Combine squash, broth, and milk in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium; gently boil for 22 to 25 minutes, or until squash is tender.

Place squash mixture in a blender or food processor; cover with lid and kitchen towel. Blend until smooth. Combine squash mixture, macaroni, onion mixture, yogurt, and cheeses. Season with salt and pepper if desired; mix well.

Place macaroni mixture in a 13 x 9-inch ceramic or glass baking dish that has been coated with spray. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until sauce is bubbling. Garnish with parsley if desired.

Posted in Recipes

Chickpea Salad on Lettuce Bowls

The versatility of chickpeas are great and the benefits of this little legume is astounding. Chickpeas provide fiber, protein, iron, magnesium, just to name a few. Since I don’t eat meat I turn to chickpeas a lot, especially for the basic older recipes like tuna fish sandwiches. Today’s recipe is inspired by tuna fish but instead of fish I use the chickpea and in place of bread a nice lettuce bowel.

This is great for those who don’t eat bread or if you are looking for a different thing for a light lunch. I also like this because if you don’t eat fish you still get to enjoy something like it and full of protein. You can also add or take away the ingredients to meet your taste.

Ingredients:

1 15.5 ounce can of chickpea (garbanzo) beans

1/4 cup of mayonnaise (vegan works great too)

1 small tomato

3 small sweet peppers

1/4 cup or less white onion

Salt, black pepper, garlic powder per your taste and spiced paprika for on top of each bowl

Lettuce of your choice

In a medium bowl pour drained chickpeas and diced onions mash for a few minutes until the chickpeas are no longer whole. You are wanting some shape in them still so you have various textures. Next add the diced tomato, sweet peppers, mayonnaise and seasoning mixing well.

On a plate or in a bowl spoon chickpea mixture onto washed lettuce leaves then top with paprika.

This is such a quick and easy recipe but full of goodness, I hope you enjoy.

Posted in Recipes

Skillet Phyllo Pie With Butternut Squash, Kale, and Goat Cheese

moms rec

I bring back this recipe because I have been missing my mom’s cooking, she always made sure we had a healthy meal and would go out of her way to try new things. I looked back at this blog with a little bit of tear in my eyes and thought that sharing this again would be a good thing for those that just found my blog, you get to try this and maybe in sharing, my mom’s cooking lives on.

Skillet Phyllo Pie with Butternut Squash, Kale and Goat Cheese:

Ingredients
3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for brushing
2 medium red onions, finely chopped
1/2 small butternut squash (about 1 pound), peeled, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped thyme
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 bunch Tuscan kale, ribs and stems removed, thinly sliced crosswise
2 large eggs, beaten to blend
3 ounces Parmesan, grated
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
8 ounces frozen phyllo pastry, thawed (half a 1-pound package)
4 ounces fresh goat cheese or feta, crumbled

Preparation
Place a rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 400°F. Heat 3 Tbsp. oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened but not browned, 6–8 minutes. Add squash and cook, stirring occasionally, until almost tender, 8–10 minutes. Mix in thyme and red pepper flakes and transfer to a medium bowl; let cool. Wipe out and reserve skillet.
Add kale, eggs, Parmesan, and lemon zest to squash mixture and gently mix to combine; season with salt and pepper. Layer phyllo sheets inside reserved skillet. Spoon kale-and-squash mixture into phyllo and dot top with goat cheese. Brush edges of phyllo lightly with oil and fold over filling, overlapping slightly, leaving center exposed.
Cook pie over medium heat until bottom of pastry is just golden (carefully lift up on one side with a heatproof rubber spatula so that you can take a peek), about 3 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and bake pie until kale is wilted and tender and phyllo is golden brown and crisp, 20–25 minutes. Let pie cool in skillet at least 15 minutes before slicing into wedges.
Do Ahead
Pie can be baked 6 hours ahead. Let cool; store uncovered at room temperature.

Todays recipe came from my mom who got it from Anna Jones Bon Appétit November 2016

My mom made this the other night for dinner. It was so good I thought I would share her hard work. Thank you Mom!

Posted in Recipes

Polenta Zucchini Lasagna

Whether you have a garden or not I think we all know what time of year this is. It is that time of year when zucchini is everywhere and those who have a garden start making list of friends, family or even enemies they can give this Italian squash to. It’s almost like when a you start a work at home business but this time people don’t run as fast from you.

So if you have been blessed with zucchini and looking for a way that is a little different than the normal wonderful breads and muffins todays recipe is for you.

I came up with this recipe because I was blessed with a lot of zucchini but wanting lasagna and loving polenta I thought that I would mix fresh ingredients with store bought so I could have a quick but tasty dinner and I even used a microwave so I wouldn’t heat up my house because a massive heat wave is still with me.

I like to grate my zucchini and put in freezer bags so I can have it ready for cooking or baking at a latter date.

Polenta Zucchini Lasagna:

1 18 ounce tubed polenta sliced

1 jar of marinara of your choice

1 bag of Italian blend shredded cheese

Hand full of small fresh tomatoes cubed

2 cups of mushrooms sliced

4 green onions sliced

1 to 1 1/2 cups of shredded zucchini

1-2 Tablespoon of garlic paste

Salt and pepper per taste

Do not cover bake 350 for about 30-40 minutes until bubbly and cheese is lightly brown or if you would like microwave for 10-12 minutes covered with microwave cover so you don’t have the splatter of the marinara all over your microwave but check your settings for best times, they will vary. When using a microwave it works out great but you don’t get the browning of the cheese like the oven.

You may like to top with shredded parmesan cheese when serving. Enjoy!

Posted in Recipes

Roosted Pepper Taco

Today’s recipe as promised, is another way to use roasted peppers. I enjoy making ingredients for one dinner but reaping the benefits the next night for a different dish. This not only helps on nights when you are short on time but you also get to make use of the ingredients so they don’t just sit in the refrigerator.

I mentioned in my previous blog post how to roast peppers but it’s always nice to have a refresher.

All you need now are small white corn tortillas, (cheese if desired )

On your plate….place a spoonful of roasted chickpeas on a warm white corn tortilla add you roasted pepper mixture then enjoy!