Thursday, September 29, 2011

pasta and bean soup

This soup was really good, even though it was a little too hot in my tiny kitchen as I cooked it. It will be great in the winter! I adapted this from a Family Fun recipe.

3 14-oz cans reduced-sodium broth (I used two veggi, and one chicken, since that's what I had)
6 cloves of garlic, peeled
4 4-inch sprigs fresh rosemary, or 1 Tbsp dried (I only had dried, but wished I had fresh because it was hard fishing the rosemary out later)
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
1 15-oz can white beans, rinsed
1 14-oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup medium pasta shells (I only had spirals, and it worked fine)
2 C individually quick-frozen spinach (I only had fresh baby spinach, so that's what i used)
freshly grated Parmesan cheese

1. Combine broth, garlic, rosemary and crushed red pepper in a 4 to 6 quart soup pot, bring to a simmer. Partially cover and simmer over medium low-heat for 20 minutes to intensify flavor. Meanwhile, mash 1 cup beans in a small bowl (I was going to skip this step, then decided "what the heck" and just did it. I'm glad I did, it made the soup a little creamier)
2.Scoop garlic cloves and rosemary from the broth with a slotted spoon (I had a mesh scoop that worked great). Add mashed and whole beans to the broth, along with tomatoes; return to a simmer. Stir in Pasta, cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until pasta is just tender, about 10-12 minutes (I actually put my spinach in here, too, but whatever).
3. Stir in spinach, cover and cook just until spinach has thawed, 2-3 minutes. Ladle soup into bowls and serve with a sprinkle of parmesan.

We all liked this soup a lot, and it was great as leftovers for lunch today!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

peanut butter cookie dough balls

I got this recipe from Oh She Glows and adapted it a little. It doesn't make a big batch, but they taste SO good, and they don't need to be cooked (and they're healthy, too!)

Peanut Butter Chocolate Crunch Cookie Dough Balls

Yield: 12 balls
  • 1/2 cup unsalted cashews (I used salted almonds because that was all I had on hand--then I just didn't add salt later)
  • 1/2 cup regular rolled oat
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp pure maple syrup (add gradually until desired consistency is achieved)
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup diced peanuts
  • 1/4 cup rice crisp cereal (I didn't add any cereal, and mine turned out fine.)

1. In a food processor, process the cashews and oats until very fine, like a flour consistency.
2. Add in the flour, salt, and sugar and pulse until combined. Now add in vanilla and maple syrup gradually until desired consistency is achieved. Process until a dough forms. Stop to scrape the sides of the bowl as necessary. Dough will be very sticky! If it is too sticky to make balls, you can add a bit more flour. The type of flour you use will alter the consistency so you may have to adjust it a bit.
3. Add chocolate chips and peanuts into processor and pulse. Scoop dough into a bowl and stir in the rice crisp cereal. Form balls with the dough (lightly wet fingers if necessary). Store in the fridge or freezer.
Note: If dough is too dry, add a bit more maple syrup. If too wet, add a bit more flour.

*Oh She Glows also added these cookies to a "blizzard" smoothie made out of banana. It was SO good!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Grilled Chicken Taco Pizza

Taco Seasoning:
2 TBS onion powder
2 TBS garlic powder
1 TBS chili powder
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground cumin

For pizza:
1/4 c oil
1 lb chicken
1 tube pizza dough
1 c shredded mozzarella cheese
1 c shredded cheddar cheese
1 avacado
juice of 1 lime
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp chili powder
1 TBS diced red onion
1 c fresh salsa
1/2 c sour cream
1/4 c chopped cilantro

Make the taco seasoning. Prepare the pizza: Mix 2 TBS of the taco seasoning and oil in a small bowl. Pound the chicken between 2 pieces of plastic wrap to 1/4 inch thick. Add the chicken to the bowl, turning to coat, and marinate 30 minutes.

Preheat grill to medium high heat. Grill chicken until cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Let cool, then cut into bite-size pieces. Divide dough into 3 equal parts. Roll out each on a floured surface into an 8-inch round. Brush with oil, sprinkle with taco seasoning, and grill until crisp. Remove from the grill.

Mix cheese in a bowl, then sprinkle on crusts and top with chicken. Return pizzas to the grill, and cook until the cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the avocado, onion, lime juice, chili powder, and cumin. Top the pizzas with the avocado mixture, salsa, sour cream, and cilantro.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Strawberry Vanilla Pancakes

We had these this morning and they were pretty yummy!

1 1/4 c flour
1 TBS brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1 c buttermilk
1 egg
1 TBS oil
2 TBS vanilla
2 c strawberries, diced
1-2 tsp sugar
zest of 1 orange

In a small bowl, mix strawberries and orange zest with 1-2 tsp sugar. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, and baking powder. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk butter milk, egg, oil, and vanilla until combined. Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients. Fold in strawberries.