Salmon Grain Bowl

Lent is a good time for a lot of things – praying more and figuring out how not to eat meat on Fridays are two of the big ones for me. I don’t know why, but tell me there’s no meat, and that’s literally all I can think about eating.

With little planning last Friday night, I found a sorry amount of veggies left in the refrigerator, salmon (see! at least I was trying to not eat meat) and some pesto. I suddenly remembered a delicious grain bowl recipe I made last summer and started compiling what I had. It turned out delicious!

Ingredients:

So for this Friday, give this guy a whirl to stay on track this Lenten season:

Fresh salmon: 1/2 – 1lb depending on if you want leftovers

Farro: 2 cups

Veggies: I like broccoli and cauliflower

Pesto: bottled or homemade

Balsamic vinegar

Parmesan cheese

Salt, pepper, lemon juice, olive oil

Directions:

  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. On a sheet, toss cauliflower with salt, pepper and olive oil (cauliflower takes longer to roast so put it in first). Roast for 25-30 minutes
  3. Drizzle olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper on salmon
  4. On the same sheet (or separate, your call) toss broccoli olive oil, salt and pepper
  5. Pop pan with salmon and broccoli in for roughly 15-20 minutes depending on how big your cut of salmon is.
  6. Cook Farro according to instructions
  7. When the veggies come out of the oven, grate parm over the top
  8. Layer in a bowl: farrow, veggies, salmon and pesto.
  9. Drizzle with balsamic to taste
  10. Eat and enjoy!

Ok, yes. I did get a little out of control with the parm. But it was delicious!

 

 

 

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Plan Prep Pour

A few months ago a friend of mine was posting her weekly meal prep to her Facebook page. I asked her why she didn’t put in a blog and she replied “3 kids, small business – no time!”.

So I made it for her.

It was a great way to get my feet wet designing, building and organizing all of the information. And so last week it went live!

If you have ever wanted to know how to start planning and prepping a week’s worth of meals, here it is! I give you Plan Prep Pour! Now go get inspired and get prepping!

www.planpreppour.com

Fiesta Salad

If you have ever hosted dinner and served Mexican food, you might have found yourself in the same predicament as I usually get in; what kind of veggie side dish do I serve?? There’s corn and there are beans, but I’m always a little perplexed what else to include.

I’m here to solve our problems! I give you – Fiesta Salad!!

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I came across this recipe and I’ve made it my own with a few additions…not only is it delicious, it’s gorgeous!! I’m dying waiting for my tomatoes to grow so I can do the homegrown version.

Here’s how to whip it up:

1 English cucumber with stripes of skin peeled off and then quartered.

1 pint of multicolored cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered depending on size (you want the cucumber and tomatoes about the same sizes).

1 quarter of a shallot, diced – red onion works too, the shallot is just a more delicate onion flavor.

Splash of olive oil.

Lime juice, salt and pepper to taste.

Mix it all up and voila! Instant pretty and it’s delicious too. I also like to use balsamic vinegar instead of the citrus juice. The sweet acidity makes it oh so delicious. But, it does darken it a little so don’t put it on until right before you serve it.

Buen Provecho!

Mexican Mule

Peter fell in love with the cocktail called a Moscow Mule. To me, they just weren’t that amazing. I’m not a vodka drinker and something about the flavors just didn’t work for me.

BUT. I recently saw a version called a Mexican Mule made with tequila and a bit of simple syrup. I convinced PW to try it with me and verdict was that it was a hit. Light, refreshing and very delicious. It will be a regular come summer I’m sure.

1.5 Shot of Tequila

3/4 Shot fresh lime juice

1/4 Shot Simple Syrup (easy peasy to make – 2 parts sugar to 1 part hot water. Stir until dissolved)

Top with Ginger Beer. We tried two different brands and we liked Bundaberg

Now for serving it…we have one copper mug (for the Moscow version) so we used it and a regular glass. And as stupid as it sounds, the mug totally made a difference. It got colder and just tasted better! Any metal cup may work, but the copper is just so pretty. Amazon has them for good prices.

Serve with a lime wheel and enjoy!

Avocado Pudding

Just trust me on this one…

I saw the incomparably Martha Stewart on the Today Show last week showing off recipes and dishes from her new clean eating cook book. The last recipe was for chocolate pudding made with avocados….yes you read that right. And judging by the reactions of the co hosts, it was pretty awesome.

I tried to make it this weekend in secret so that I could pass it off to the kids as real pudding. I knew as soon as they saw the green goodness of the avocado, they would run away in terror. But I swear they know the sound of the drawer where the Cuisinart is kept and as soon as they hear it, they come running to help push the buttons. I told Baylor that the only way she was allowed to help was if she agreed to eat the final product. She reluctantly said yes and we proceeded to mix and sample and mix and sample until we got just the right combination of ingredients. When she finally got to sit down with a bowl, her reaction was priceless; “this IS pretty good!”

And this guy? The proof is in the pudding, er, picture.

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The best part is that they get a guilt free dessert that is pretty close to a healthy food. Oh Martha, you’ve done it again!

Martha’s Avocado Chocolate Pudding recipe can be found here:

http://www.marthastewart.com/1050437/chocolate-pudding

Perfect Pesto

Peter and I got hungry for pesto pasta this weekend. I dug out this favorite recipe from Food Renegade (http://www.foodrenegade.com/almond-spinach-basil-pesto/). Its a delicious combination of basil, spinach and roasted almonds making a slightly healthier pesto.

I use Blue Diamond roasted almonds and skip the roasting part of the recipe. I also recruit little fingers to help pull the leaves off the stems of Basil. I double the recipe and throw a container in the refrigerator for later. Or you can get fancy like my mom and fill ice cube trays in the freezer so you can easily pop out a portion at a time for cooking.

But for me? I will eat this entire container of goodness well before it goes bad…

Finally getting to cute this beautiful stuff!

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Little fingers do the best job harvesting the leaves. Sometimes they are shirtless though…IMG_0999

I make ours a little thicker to cut some of the oil calories. I also like the way it keeps it’s flavor in pasta. And eggs. And on toast. And with chicken. And on a spoon.IMG_2830

Voila! Tossed with angel hair pasta and rotisserie chicken!

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Mini Chicken Pot Pie

I keep seeing this recipe on TV and it makes me hungry every time.  I made it for the kiddos and at first they were reluctant, with a some promises of treats and a few threats, they ate and they liked! These are now part of our kids meals – and Peter and mine too.

It’s super simple and the kids can help shredding the chicken and mixing everything together!

Ingredients:
2 cups frozen mixed vegetables
1 cup diced cooked chicken (rotisserie chicken from the Deli works AWESOME)
1 can condensed Cream of Mushroom soup
1 can biscuits

Shredded cheese

Instructions:

1. Heat oven to 375°F

2. Mix veggies, soup and chicken together

3. Roll each biscuit with a rolling pin (you can use your hands, but the rolling pin goes faster and flatter) to about 7 inch diameter

4. Put each biscuit into a greased muffin pan. Fill up and pinch corners to keep the filling in

5. Bake for about 20 minutes, sprinkle with a little cheese and voila!  Serve as is for the kiddos and with a side salad for the adults

THE Best Kale Salad

The only thing you need to know is that A. Peter agreed to try this. B. He had seconds. And C. he said I should make it again and soon. Boom. Best recipe ever.

1 bunch Black or Tuscan kale, de-veined and chopped into small pieces

1/3 of a lemon

1 tsp garlic paste

2 count olive oil

1 cup cooked quinoa

1/4 cup graded (powdery) Parmesan cheese

Dried cranberries

Roasted pumpkin seeds

 

At least an hour before you’re ready to eat, toss chopped kale, lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and some salt and pepper. Make sure to work everything into the kale to tenderize it. Set aside for at least an hour.

Cook quinoa according to directions. Toss hot quinoa with the kale mixture. Add Parmesan cheese, some cranberries and seeds. Mix and taste for more lemon (it’s easy to add too much at the start!). Serve room temperature or chill.

Kale is super sturdy so this salad keeps really well over night!

If you are a fan of True Food Kitchen’s kale salad, you’re going to love this. It’s really similar and you could add in bread crumbs instead of the quinoa for the TFK version. Just go easy with the lemon.

Quinoa “Oatmeal”

I came across a recipe for a breakfast dish made with quinoa when looking for the Princess Sophia Amulet Popsicles (if you have a daughter, you know). I made some adjustments to the recipe to make it less for kids and more for adults and it is delicious!! I made a bunch so I’ve been able to have a quick, healthy breakfast all week.

1 Cup Quinoa, cooked 

1/4 Cup Chia seeds

2/3 Cup Coconut milk

1/4 Cup water

Big handful of chopped, dried cherries

1/8 Cup unsweetened shredded coconut

1/4 Cup slivered almonds

2 Tsp honey

2 Bananas – smashed

1 1/2 Cups fresh blueberries

Cook quinoa according to the box. Mix remaining ingredients together and taste for added ingredients. Refrigerate over night and add with additional strawberries, blueberries and or bananas. Enjoy!

Green Smoothie

Before Baylor was born, I came across a recipe for a green smoothie. For some crazy reason, I was intrigued. I gathered up my ingredients and created one of the most delicious smoothies I’ve ever had and the main ingredient is….spinach!

I drink these every morning and usually one in the afternoon when I get snacky for something sweet. I make about 8 red cups and keep them in the fridge for easy access. It fills you up and gives you a big dose of fruits and veggies in one tasty drink!

smoothie

Ingredients:

1 large box of baby spinach

4-5 kale leaves deveined

3-4 large carrots – chopped

12-16oz frozen pineapple check

12-16oz frozen strawberries

12-16oz frozen blueberries

12-16oz frozen raspberries

1 bottle Vitamin Water Zero

Water

 

~In a Cuisinart or blender (I use a Cuisinart), blend spinach, kale, pineapple and Vitamin Water. Add plain water if need be to get the mixture really smooth.

~Pour mix into approximately 8 red cups – each about half way.

~Blend strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and carrots (might need to do in two sets) with hot water until smooth.

~Fill remaining half of cups, cover and refrigerate. Enjoy!