December 30, 2014

December 28, 2014

herb omelet

These omelets are amazing!  It's not often that an omelet sounds good for breakfast, but after a couple times of making these I have fallen in love.   I believe one of their secrets is the baked in cheeses, gruy√®re and parmesan, and the other being the fresh herbs.  You won't be sorry when making these.  Promise.  I filled them with chard and onion, but you can customize what you put inside them.  

December 25, 2014


Merry Christmas
'For unto us a child is born, onto us a son is given, and the government will be upon his shoulders. And his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.'
Isaiah 9:6

December 24, 2014

simple roasted brussels sprouts

These are quick and easy to make, plus they pair well with almost anything.  It's a win win for your meal!  I made them to go with caprese chicken and they were perfect!  

caprese chicken

These were so good!!  Caprese salad is one of my favs so adding it to the top of chicken breast was a no brainer.  The whole family loved them!!  I served this with simple roasted brussels sprouts.

December 23, 2014

curried pea pods


This dish is delicious and easy to prepare.  You can top it with the meat of your choice (shown with a thinly sliced sirloin steak), or you can keep it a vegetarian dish and add some tofu.  

December 22, 2014

Tonight I made baked pasta with chicken and swiss chard again for dinner, yes it is that good (it's not often I make something multiple times).  However, I made a few changes since I didn't have any chicken on hand.  I swapped out the chicken for mushrooms and used marsala wine instead of white.  Amazing.  So good and perfect for a chilly winter night!

December 21, 2014

mini stuffed sweet peppers

These are delicious and easy to prepare for your next holiday party.  Plus, they can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator until you need them.

December 19, 2014

whole wheat orzo with artichoke-walnut pesto

  Amazing.  This pasta rates as one of my absolute favorites.  I love pesto and enjoy different versions of the original, basil with almonds, and this is a winner!  This pesto is so good with the walnuts, artichokes, and lemon.  Plus, since it come together quickly it's perfect for a weeknight meal and makes wonderful leftovers!

December 18, 2014

Need a dessert?


I made these black bean brownies again today... so glad I did!  When making them the first time, back in May, I used vanilla with and didn't add any nuts.  Tonight I swapped the vanilla for almond extract and added the almonds.  Mmmmm... they are so good!!

spice rubbed okra

These okra are delicious and so simple to make!   They will pair well with anything from grilled meat to lentils, and are a new way for most people to prepare them.  Down here in the south people LOVE to fry them, which is good, but not as good as this!!  :)

December 16, 2014

stir fry with tofu and asparagus over rice

This dish was delicious and put a new spin on stir fry.  The basil and mint are not commonly used in Asian dishes but really added.  The cool mint really set off the sweetness from the hoisin sauce, and the crunch of the cashews, was what really made this memorable.  Don't forget to prep ahead of time... the cook time is so short you won't have time to be chopping in between ingredients. 

December 15, 2014

roasted red pepper hummus

This hummus is so good!  In fact, the people who think they don't like hummus... will like hummus.  It is quick, easy to prepare, and versatile to serve.  It is even great to use during the week on lunch wraps and sandwiches, so go ahead and double it so you'll have some leftovers!

chicken tortilla soup

Mmmmm.... I have a fondness for chicken tortilla soup and this one may just top the charts.  The toppings make it, so don't skimp or forget to add them to the grocery list... after all they are just as important! :)

December 14, 2014

grits with rosemary onions and a fried egg

This recipe is quick to make and has amazing flavor!  Plus, it is perfect for breakfast or dinner.  I served it with fresh whole wheat bread and there weren't any leftovers!

December 11, 2014

Grocery List- Week 21

Meals for the week:

-grits with rosemary onions and a fried egg served with toast
-chicken tortilla soup served with cheese quesadillas
-stir fry with tofu and asparagus over rice

  • 2 large onion
  • 4 teaspoons fresh rosemary leaves
  • 1 green bell pepper
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 1 package of tofu 
  • 1 bunch green onions
  • 3 inches of ginger root 
  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 4 cups spinach, or chopped kale, or chopped chard
  • 1 lime
  • 1 small handful fresh basil
  • 2 cups stone-ground yellow corn grits
  • 1 teaspoon old bay spice 
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 3 tablespoons cornmeal  
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 
  • 1/2 cup cashews 
  • dried mint, to taste 
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil 
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
Pasta/Rice/Beans/Canned Goods
  • 32 ounces chicken or vegetable stock
  • 32 ounces chicken stock
  • 1, 10 ounce can diced tomatoes 
  • 1, 4 ounce can diced green chilies
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 3 cups cooked black beans (1 cup dry/2 cans, drained)
  • 4-5 cups cooked rice 

  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • 4-6 eggs
  • 2 whole boneless, skinless chicken breasts (if you are using organic, which I would HIGHLY recommend, then you may want to use 3 since they are quite a bit smaller)
  • chicken tortilla soup toppings (you may use a few or all of them):
    • sour cream
    • diced avocado
    • salsa 
    • grated cheese
    • chopped fresh cilantro 
    • crushed tortilla chips

December 10, 2014

asian greens with tofu and teriyaki sauce

This dish has unbelievable flavor!!  That is actually a quote from my food loving, wonderful husband!  I made my own teriyaki sauce, as I usually do, partially because I didn't have any on hand and partially because homemade will almost always be the healthier option.  Plus, it only takes a few extra minutes to put together.  This dish makes a perfect vegetarian main course or you can add some chicken or thinly sliced beef... either way you will love it!

homemade teriyaki sauce

 This sauce is delicious and perfect for any recipe that calls for teriyaki sauce or for grilled meats and veggies!

December 09, 2014

pasta with fresh tomatoes, walnuts, and herbs

 This may be one of the easiest pastas you will ever make.  You only cook the noodles and heat the olive oil with the garlic.  That's it.  Done.  Plus, it's delicious!  I have been on quite the nut kick since Thanksgiving, but something about them feels like fall to me.  I am also really liking the depth they can add to even the simplest dish transforming it into something you would serve your guest.

For this pasta I found a new star... meet Bucatini.

December 07, 2014

parmesan baked salmon

Please excuse the picture... there is something about a baked piece of fish with white sauce on it that doesn't want to photography beautifully.  However, this was way to good not to share it.  I love salmon, but I am picky about how it's prepared.  It's not often that I have it and think "now this is good!".  My absolute favorite is maple soy salmon, but sometimes you need options and now I have one!

December 04, 2014

mashed parmesan cauliflower

 This delicious side is a fun way to eat cauliflower and especially perfect for those of you loving comfort food, but trying to eat less starches. 

December 02, 2014

sweet potato risotto with rosemary and spicy maple walnuts

This risotto is the epitome of autumn comfort food.  My favorite part?  The spicy maple walnuts so don't take a shortcut and just toss some raw ones on top.  They are perfect! 

December 01, 2014

baked pasta with chicken and swiss chard

 Since I grew up eating my fair share of casseroles I purposefully make very few one pot dishes that bake in the oven.  I feel like I must have eaten them 2-3 times a week for the 18 years while living at home, and now have this "aversion" to them.  HOWEVER, this dish is amazing.  Even my husband said "this is one of my absolute favorites" and as a plus you could make it earlier in the day, refrigerate it, then top it with bread crumbs and bake it for dinner.   

November 26, 2014

pecan pie

I love pecan pie.  Here is a recipe that is even better than the original without the corn syrup, and most of the ingredients you already have on hand.  This recipe also has an added bonus... the top layer is thin and crunchy... think toasted marshmallow crunchy.  It's amazing, and yes I may have already had a piece... and the guest aren't even here yet! 

easy caramel sauce

 Amazing.  I adore caramel sauce but refuse to eat store-bought since it is full of high fructose corn syrup, caramel coloring, etc.  This... this is a little taste of heaven and will be perfect drizzled on my apple-cranberry pie!

apple-raisin stuffing

This is my favorite stuffing recipe!  I love the raisins and apples with the savory spices and variety of breads.  This has been a Thanksgiving staple for a couple of years and is always a hit!

cranberry sauce with orange and basil

 This cranberry sauce is delicious with the added orange and basil.  The sweetness from the basil compliments the tartness of the cranberries and the orange...  it is just a bonus!

cranberry salsa

 Perfect for an appetizer on Thanksgiving day!  It delicious and puts a nice spin on traditional salsa.

November 25, 2014

breakfast casserole bites

These egg casserole bites are perfect for breakfast and can be made ahead of time and frozen.  Plus, they are easy to customize for your guest and their dietary preferences.  You can also add bacon or sausage, or make a combination.

November 24, 2014



What will you make for breakfast for your guest that are coming in town for Thanksgiving?  Tomorrow I will be making homemade granola and pumpkin and apple muffins.  It can be so easy to forget about breakfast when you are so busy planning the turkey dinner!  If you can make it ahead of time then they can grab it as they wake up and you won't have to prepare anything that morning.  You can just lay it out on pretty trays the night before and set the timer on the coffee maker... done!

chicken lettuce wraps

Love the lettuce wraps at P.F. Chang's?  Then you will LOVE these!! Plus, they are fast and easy to make.

November 23, 2014

barley pilaf with white beans and broccoli

 This recipe is easy and simple, making it perfect for a weeknight meal. If you are short on time go ahead and grab the quick-cooking pearl barley!

November 20, 2014

Grocery List- Week 20

Meals for the week:

-barley pilaf with white beans and broccoli (can be eaten as a vegetarian main course or used as a side for your favorite meat)
-chicken lettuce wraps
-spinach, almond, and feta pasta

  • 5 cloves garlic
  • 3 onions
  • 2 inches ginger root (1 tablespoon grated)
  • 2 green onions
  • 1 head butter lettuce
  • 3 cups broccoli florets and diced stem (about 2 stalks)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons dill or basil (if you use basil I would highly recommend using fresh)
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 6 ounces spinach, chopped (I used half spinach, half arugula... I love the bitterness in the arugula!)
  • 3 ounces onion, kale, or alfalfa sprouts
    • 2-3 ounces toasted almond slices
    • 6 ounces tablespoons olive oil
    • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
    • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
    • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar 
    • 1 teaspoon sriracha, or more, to taste
    • 1, 8 ounce can whole or sliced water chestnuts (they will be diced)
    Pasta/Rice/Beans/Canned Goods
    • 3 3/4 cups vegetable broth
    • 1 1/2 cups barley (if you are short on time you can use quick-cooking pearl barley, you will just need to adjust your cooking time OR if you can't find barley you can substitute arborio rice)
    • 3 cups cooked great northern beans (1 cup uncooked/2 cans)
    • 1 pound small dried pasta (for gluten-free make sure to choose a gluten-free pasta)

    • 4 ounces feta cheese 
    • 1 pound ground chicken (I had the meat department grind up a package of organic thighs)

    November 17, 2014

    homemade granola


    I love granola and the best part about making your own is controlling the amount of sugar and what ingredients you add!  Ever heard that granola isn't much more than crumbled cookie?  Some of the store bought granola is nutritionally exactly that... but this recipe is delicious and you can customize your recipe depending on what you have on hand.

    Whole oats are full of good-for-you fiber, high in protein, and contain vitamins and minerals like folate, iron, and magnesium.  Be sure you are buying 100% pure whole rolled oats, nothing that says “instant” or “quick cooking”.

    I like to use coconut oil because it’s full of nutrients and adds a really nice light flavor to the granola, but you can use any healthy oil you like the taste of. Macadamia nut oil or grape seed oil would also be great, I would stay away from olive oil because it has a strong flavor.
    I always add nuts and seeds to my homemade granola for flavor, texture, extra nutrients and added healthy protein. A small amount of unsweetened dried fruit is ok too, just make sure it’s unsweetened to keep the sugar content down.  You may use less sweetener if you add dried fruit. 

    November 15, 2014

    ginger sesame noodles with broccoli and cabbage

    I have this thing for Asian pasta recipes that have a tahini sauce, pretty sure this isn't the first one I have posted, and this one is just as delicious if not better!  Perfect for the sweet glazed salmon recipe, maple soy salmon.  You will LOVE it!

    maple soy salmon

     My favorite favorite favorite way to make salmon.  If you haven't tried it yet... do.  This is a great recipe to prepare for people that "don't like salmon".  My personal opinion... this will make a salmon lover of anyone!  I grew up thinking that I loved every type of fish except salmon and boy was I wrong!!

    November 12, 2014

    pasta with walnut-beet pesto and ricotta

    After making pasta with radicchio, raisins, and pine nuts I realized how much I enjoyed the creamy ricotta topping on pasta.  This dish is a great way to make a pretty pasta and get plenty servings of vegetables, plus it's perfect for a week night.  Once the beets are done (which can be done earlier in the day or days ahead of time) it only took 15 minutes to prepare.  

    This recipe will surprise you with the incredible flavor.  When it is all said and done there is a hint of beet, but the majority of the flavor is from the toasted walnuts, red pepper flakes, and creamy ricotta.  My girls especially loved eating their fuschia spaghetti noodles!

    November 10, 2014

    chicken jalfrezi

    This dish is tasty and perfect for someone that is just getting their "feet wet" when it comes to curry.  It is pretty basic and will remind you of a stir-fry.  If you would prefer you can make it with potatoes instead of rice.  You would just chop 3 large potatoes, add them to the skillet with 2 tablespoons of oil before adding the chicken, and cook for 10-15 minutes until they begin soften, then add the chicken. 

    November 09, 2014

    southwestern hash

     This is so good!!!  We had it for dinner but it would also be perfect for a breakfast or brunch.  Delicious with a side of buttered toast.

    November 08, 2014

    three-bean chili

    This vegetarian chili is delicious and perfect for the weather as it cools down.  The toppings definitely make this dish and dress it up from being "just your mother's chili".  

    November 05, 2014

    warm edamame and mushroom salad

      This salad is so good and easy to prepare!  I served it with sesame shrimp but you could also pair it with tofu, chicken, beef, or fish... pretty much anything!

    sesame shrimp


     These are so good and ridiculously easy!!  I made them to go with the warm edamame and mushroom salad and they were perfect!!