Childhood memories are such an amazing thing. As we sift though the timeline of life in our mind, it is so interesting to see how we remember events and seasons. My mom recently came for a visit and it is always so nostalgic to […]
Month: November 2017
The first time I ever remember enjoying Kale was from a “Pregnancy Stew” recipe that I found 20 years ago! I remember going to the store and needing to ask what it looked like so I would buy the right thing. Then Becky made me her Strawberry Kale Salad and after that I was really hooked. Since then I have always looked for new and exciting ways to enjoy one of my favorite veggies. I love it in soups and all kinds of salads and even in smoothies. In fact, I think if I was a vegetable, I would be kale! Flavorful, nutritious, a little bit frilly… holds up well under pressure and doesn’t easily get bent out of shape! Ha… I like to think I am a little like that!
So, I should tell you that I am just a little bit obsessed with this salad lately. I don’t know if you are like this too…. I go through phases where I want to eat the same thing for a few weeks and then I move on to something new. This may stay in a regular rotation for a while before I get tired of it. I am kind of on a “Plant Strong” diet kick right now so I will often eat salads for my entire meal. My husband would prefer a “Meat Strong” diet, but if I have some sausage or bacon cooked up for him to add then everyone is happy.
My mom was here visiting recently and I made this up for her. She loved it so much that she called me from the store when she got home to find out what she needed to make it. Now mind you, my mom is 75 years old, has spent a lifetime cooking for her family and is honestly “over it”. She eats pretty simply most days, partly because she has simple taste but partly because it’s just not worth the effort. My point here is that she thought it was worth the effort to make this, that is saying a lot!!
This Salad is super flavorful and has a rainbow of veggies so it is a beautiful addition to any meal or a delicious meal all by itself. It packs well for lunches too if you are on the go.
Just make it! You won’t be sorry!
Quinoa & Kale Salad
Quinoa tossed with fresh kale and a rainbow of yummy veggies. Perfect as a meal or a side dish.
- 3 cups cooked quinoa (cooled)
- 3 to 4 cups kale, diced small
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 Tbls honey*
- 1/4 cup diced sun dried tomatoes
- 1 cup diced purple cabbage
- 3 Tbls diced fresh parsley
- 3 Tbls red wine vinegar
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/3 cup Pine Nuts (or other nuts of choice)
- Step 1 For the quinoa: Into a saucepan add 1 cup of quinoa, 2 cups of water and 1/2 tsp salt. Simmer for 15 minutes. Set aside to cool completely (or follow package directions).
- Step 2 Dice kale into small bite size pieces. add to large bowl with olive oil and honey. Massage until Kale is well coated with oil and honey and it softens just a bit, 2 or 3 minutes.
- Step 3 Add cooled quinoa and all other ingredients and toss well. Chill for an hour or so to let the garlic flavor meld with the other ingredients.
~*If you are following a THM diet plan, this meal is a nutritious crossover. You will just want to swap out the honey for an on-plan sweeter. To make it an E-meal, reduce the olive oil to 2 Tbls and omit the nuts…. But really, it’s super yummy as a crossover!
~Pine nuts are amazing in this but they are a bit pricy so feel free to swap them out with another nut. Slivered almonds or roasted pecans would be great choices.
While some only think of sweet potatoes as a seasonal dish, they are a year round staple in my house.
In the past, the thought of sweet potatoes only drummed up thoughts of Thanksgiving dinner. My mom always served them loaded with brown sugar, butter and heaps of toasted marshmallows. I am still not sure how those ever got labeled as dinner food and not dessert but a tradition it remains.
It’s just that there are another 364 days in the year and I really like sweet potatoes so these have become a weekly staple in my home. My son, Jonah, who is severely autistic has been known to eat giant plates full of this little roasted gem in one sitting so I keep having to make larger and larger portions so that there is enough for the rest of us!
When I make a full batch, I use a large cookie sheet and do them in the oven. But I frequently do a half batch in my air fryer and I must say that they are pretty amazing that way too! Either way you make them, they are a healthy, low fat, carbohydrate source with so many delicious ways to use them.
Here are a few ideas:
Add them to Salads
Add them to soups
Smash them a bit and spread them on toasted bread with turkey and cranberry sauce.
Sprinkle them with slivered almonds, oats & chia seeds and pour over some milk and honey for a yummy breakfast.
Or just serve them up as a side dish for any meal.
Having a stash of these in my fridge for the week makes it so easy to use them for just about anything.
Hope you enjoy them as much as we do!
Everyday Sweet Potatoes
Make up a big batch of these Roasted Sweet Potatoes as a side dish or store them and add them to meals all week long!
- 6 to 8 cups of cubed, peeled sweet potatoes
- 2 Tbls of Oil (olive, avocado or melted coconut oil)
- 1 Tbls onion powder
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tsp Smoked Paprika (regular will work too)
- A sprinkle of Black or Cayenne Pepper to tase
- Step 1 Preheat oven to 375 degrees
- Step 2 Peel Sweet Potatoes and dice them into cubes (about 3/4 inch squared).
- Step 3 Place in a large bowl and sprinkle with oil and stir to evenly coat.
- Step 4 Add spices and toss again.
- Step 5 Place on one large or two small cookie sheets, trying to have them spread out evenly and not clumped together.
- Step 6 Place in preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes and then stir gently.
- Step 7 Bake another 10 min.
- Step 8 Stick a fork in one of the larger cubes to see if they are soft.
- Step 9 Switch oven to Broil and broil on high for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Step 10 Stir and broil for another minute or two, just until starting to brown.
- Step 11 Remove from oven and serve or let them cool and then store in the refrigerator for a week or so.
If using an air fryer, you may need to do a half batch, depending on the size of your appliance. Mine usually takes about 20 minutes with a toss halfway through.
If following the Trim Healthy Mama plan, these make a perfect addition to your E meals and I find I am more likely to incorporate more E’s when I have these around.
My son likes to add a few additional spices to these but I prefer them pretty basic so that they can work lots of different flavor options. But feel free to add any of your favorite spice flavors!
As Newlyweds, 25 years ago (!) my husband and I journeyed from our home in Hawaii to visit my dear sister and her family in Southern California. For breakfast in the morning she served us this amazing vanilla cream. She layered this wonderful, sweet, full […]
Tasty granola with just the right amount of crunch
- 4 cups rolled oats (not instant)
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
- 1/2 cup ground golden flax-seed (or wheat germ)
- 1 cup nuts of choice
- 1/2 cup coconut or other mild flavored oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Step 1 Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
- Step 2 Place oats in a baking pan and bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes
- Step 3 Add remaining ingredients to the pan and stir thoroughly.
- Step 4 Return to oven and bake removing every 10-15 minutes to stir. As it bakes, you will need to stir more frequently so the top doesn’t burn. Keep baking until it is a deep golden brown.
Over the years, these sandwiches have been on our table countless times. Often just for the family, but have been served to dinner guests, house guests and even at a big family reunion! They are always a hit… because well… melty cream cheese, pesto, turkey… […]