cauliflower power

You’ll have to forgive me, it’s literally been almost a year since I last posted on here. Really, I post mostly for my own ability to find good recipes we’ve had when I am scrambling for dinner ideas at 5:05pm on a weekday after work. So maybe I will apologize to myself. I have a lot of great recipes we’ve discovered this past year that need to find their way on to this site. I am hoping to play some serious catch up. My second apology is for some of the pictures I am going to post (i.e. the one for this recipe) as the sun sets at like 4:30 these days, so lovely, naturally lit pictures are out until the next time change. Oh well.

This recipe is one I found in my real simple magazine after we spent New Year’s Eve cleaning out our pantry (no lie, it was 10pm and being the crazy party animals we are, we were chucking half our pantry to rid ourselves of expired and unhealthy items). Hidden in the depths of the third shelf was a glorious stash of quinoa that I had no idea was back there, so I have been using the opportunity to try out new recipes using what we already have. This was a really simple, delicious dinner that looks so pretty with out all the effort. In our house it was even easier as a team effort–hubby out on his new birthday grill using his deeply ingrained man-tuition to grill the steaks to perfection (he’s surprisingly good for not having had a grill until a few months ago). Now, the real jewel in this recipe is the pureed cauliflower. I always hear about people trying to replace potatoes with cauliflower and I have never been convinced–until now. It was just like mashed potatoes, it was kind of amazing. I cheated with this recipe a little—I used a bag of “steam fresh” frozen lightly seasoned garlic cauliflower, and it was so flavorful. I also cooked the quinoa my traditional way, as the first time I followed the recipe it was a little crunchy and under done. A few other minor tweaks and this is now a go-to meal for us. It really only takes about 15-20 mins to make, and it’s a good healthy meal for two (multiply the recipe as needed to fit your family size). Continue reading “cauliflower power”

spectacular salmon

So… I never liked salmon. And by that, I mean that I am pretty sure I never even tried salmon until about a year ago under the assumption that I wouldn’t like it. It’s easy enough to avoid. With a swift “Oh, no thanks, I don’t like salmon” a lifetime can fly by (because I am so old ; ) where you have never even taken a bite. I don’t know why, I guess it’s the pink color that reminds me of under cooked chicken. So about a year ago I took the plunge. I like fish. People like salmon. I like most people. And it was good! And I was happy. And I was a little sad for all the times I had turned it away. But I assure you, we have probably made up lost times times two. The best part is that this salmon recipe takes 8 minutes and four ingredients. And to top it off, paired up with whole wheat cous cous and steamed green beans, the entire meal is easily multi-tasked together in 10 minutes (or see the above variation of brussel sprouts and quinoa-brown rice). It’s my new, healthy go-to meal when I hit the 5 o’clock meal panic after work. Enjoy!

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chili with a twist

I was so pumped when I found another way to eat quinoa. It’s delicious and packed with so many good things (see my post ‘whoa quinoa’). And it adds a great texture to chili, making it wonderfully thick and hearty. There is nothing bad about this recipe—its got quinoa, lean ground beef, and an assortment of veggies. Use ground turkey if you like for an even healthier option. And my husband and I got a week’s worth of dinner out of this meal, a side of yummy honey cornbread. It is a filling and inexpensive meal, simple to make, and a great addition to your New Year’s resolution to eat awesome healthier food.

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faux dough

This is a recipe stumbled upon on the ever popular pinterest, which is heaven for anyone who likes to look at food, eat food, make food….well you get the picture. My husband and I recently joined a gym and have been getting up to get there at 6am before work. I don’t like breakfast food—give me a cold piece of pizza any day over eggs and sausage—and my stomach is especially never happy about being up at odd hours. I saw these and thought they’d be the perfect pre-workout breakfast snack. Easy to pop one or two, healthy, and I hoped—–yummy. Every once in a while I’ll be inspired by something that sounds healthy and I think about how great it’d be to incorporate it into our regular snacks or meals, and usually it will stick for a week or two and then fade because deep down it’s not as good as the unhealthy stuff (pita chips and hummus are an exception—they have stuck in our lives forever, yum!) Okay so that was the build up—these little things are GOOD. Like pop one or five in the morning and then mid afternoon snack and then after dinner dessert good. I am going to say it and you won’t believe me, but I swear I’m not exaggerating…

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whoa, quinoa

I love quinoa. I love quinoa. I love quinoa. Oh, by the way…have I mentioned that I love quinoa?

Ever since I gleefully flipped through the pages of my February 2011 issue of Real Simple magazine, scrolling through their list of the 30 healthiest foods, I have tried to incorporate them into our meals at home. I didn’t know how to say quinoa  (I now believe it is ‘kin-know-uh’, but if you get laughed at when you say it then you didn’t hear it from me), much less if it was any good. It is. Oh please, try it. There are a million ways to make it and each is delicious. The texture is beyond amazingly light and fluffy, and I promise that you won’t be eating it because it’s good for you. You will eat it because its more tasty than rice, and the fact that it just so happens to be wonderfully nutritious is an added bonus. It is a plant based protein (so it has all 9 essential amino acids) that parallels meat in its protein profile and is gluten free,  as well as low in fat and cholesterol. It is high in folate, B6, thiamin, iron, potassium, riboflavin…the list goes on. All I know is I’m in love.

This recipe is one I like to pair with Chicken Saltimbocca, which I will post soon. I will also post a recipe for Mexican Quinoa which I pair with these amazing white enchiladas. Keep your eye out for these very soon!

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all hail kale

This post is for my sister. She has been telling me that this blog is killing her because it is full of tempting pictures of “things I can’t eat”. So I’m bringing out the big guns. This is a simple, nutritious snack that we love, though my coworkers have shot me a few odd looks while I’m munching on a handful of this green, crispy snack.

How good for you it it? Just go to your local grocery store and look on the back of the bag. Kale is high in vitamins A, B6, and C; fiber; manganese; calcium; copper; and potassium. It also is packed with important phytochemicals, beta-carotene, lutein, and carotenoids that may help fight certain cancers and protect vision. And antioxidants? Yes, it has those too.

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