Monday, February 27, 2012

Tofu Pad Thai w Veggies and my new Workout Plan!

The other night I went out to dinner for my birthday with my hubby and his Mom. She was going to take us to Outback Steakhouse, I must admit I was not enthused. I suggested going to Mongolian Barbeque. It's not actual's like a stir fry place. You pick your meats, seafood, noodles and veggies. Then you have your sauce and spice station. I chose tofu, rice noodles, sugar snap peas, green peppers, jalapenos, and potatoes. My sauce was pad thai, then I threw in some garlic, peanuts, and some seasonings. It was soooo good! So good, in fact I recreated it for dinner tonight. Minus the potatoes, snap peas, and jalapenos. It wasn't the same but it was still really good.

Tofu Pad Thai w Veggies
2 tsp tamarind paste (seedless) mixed with a little hot water
1 tsp sirracha
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp rice wine vinegar
sprinkle of crushed chili peppers
seasoned salt to taste
4oz thai rice noodles (I just used as much as I thought would serve one person)
1/2 package firm tofu cut into cubes
1/4 green pepper chopped
1 tomato chopped
5 broccoli florets chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
cilantro minced
peanuts minced
juice of 1/2 a lime
peanut or sesame oil

You may use any vegetables you want, this is a simple vegan pad thai recipe that I have added a few additions to. Place rice noodles in a bowl with warm water for about 30 minutes, or until soft. Mix tamarind paste with water in a bowl, and whisk until dissolved. Add sirracha, soy sauce, vinegar, and crushed chili peppers. Heat oil in a wok if you have one, if not heat oil over saucepan. Hubby was using the wok for the night so I just used a saucepan. Once oil is heated, add in peanuts, cilantro, broccoli, tomato, green pepper and tofu. Saute with seasonings. Throw in drained rice noodles and saute for a few more minutes. At the end throw in your sauce and saute until combined. This dish is open to any changes, you can add egg and meat if you don't want it vegan, whatever you like! Enjoy!

 Hubby made sweet chili chicken for dinner. Smelled and looked so good. I then thought to myself, duh! I'll make Sweet Chili Fried Tofu sometime..ooh I can't wait!!

Oh, I also would like to inform everyone of my new work out plan, maybe it's because I'm so excited for it. For a long time now I have wanted to run a half marathon, it's been a goal for way too long. Well, I received a text from my dear old Mother today over at Town and Country Living, saying if I wanted to run a half marathon she would run it with me. She has run many marathons, and I am so proud of her. I said it's time to do this!! I then found this great work out program...Mom sent me a training program for my half marathon I'll be running in June, which I'll combine with this work out program above. I work out now and lift weights, but I figure it will be better to have a plan. What's even better is they are both 12 weeks. Now I can track my progress, starting tomorrow, I'll be tracking what I eat, and I'll be starting my training for my marathon and my weight training. Woot, woot! I'm hoping between all this I will lose my muffin tops and stomach fat. It goes into more detail than that, but I don't want to bore anyone! I am excited to go buy new running shoes tomorrow. I spent some of my birthday money today on new work out clothes! :) It's my motivation.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

New Changes!

As you can see I've made a few changes to my blog! :) FlournFriends just didn't make sense after changing my diet. Mom, over at Town and Country Living came up with the name. She says it comes from a T.V. show..well Mom I've never heard of it and I'm only 26! ;) That seemed to have been the popular vote and sounded nicest in my head. So I have changed my blog name to Mrs. Green Jeans..for me, I liked it because I am going green, not only in my diet, but around my house and anywhere I can. The jeans part is because I always wear jeans. Totally true. I'm not a dress/skirt or any other kind of clothing girl. I like my jeans! I now have to get a new header, and a new button for my blog..coming soon!!! I just wanted to send out a big thanks to all those lovely ladies who are still sticking by my blogs side and supporting me through my change. I will say for my birthday yesterday I totally went off the wagon. It was my birthday so I figured I could..probably not the best excuse. I spent the afternoon at my Mom's eating an amazing brunch. I was going to go to a stir fry place that night but decided I wanted to do something more. So hubby and I headed to Hollywood not the actual Hollywood Blvd, but a movie theatre where you can eat and drink..and I mean alcohol!! It had been awhile since we'd been, and I have great memories of this place. It was somewhere hubby took me on one of our many dates. We ordered Oscar fries to share, waffle fries with cajun seasoning and cheese. Ohhhh, yeah. I ordered a vegetarian pizza that was very yummy. I also ordered a Frozen Melon Ball drink. It was soo good. Then I ordered some peanut m&m's. I totally splurged for my birthday. We saw Safe House. It was really good. I'm not the big chick flick movie go-er, I'm more of a tom-boy when it comes to movies. It was a great way to end my birthday! Even better, I get my stir-fry tonight! Woohoo! I hope you all enjoy my new changes and continue to stick around with me through my new journey!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Cupcake Cookies

Have you ever had iced sugar cookies? There's something about them..besides the fact that they are utterly amazing! My husband, and children I nanny are addicted to them! I think Caleb, the coolest 5 year old I know, and my husband bugged me about them for a good 3 days. Are they done yet? When are you going to decorate them? When can I eat them..boys! Silly boys! They are pretty darn delicious. I'd like to make more thinking of them now. The only downfall is they are very time consuming, dough has to refrigerate, cookies have to cool down, then you flat ice, more rest time..then decorating, it's a few days process. Of course I always have to make them look beautiful and put much effort and time into them. I need to start collecting cookie cutters, so if you'd like to send some my way please do! I won't turn them down! :) I used Annie's sugar cookie dough over at Annies Eats..she has some great stuff over there! They were very good and the dough turned out perfectly.

Perfect Sugar Cookies
2 sticks unsalted butter at room temp
1 cup powdered sugar
1 large egg
2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, or vanilla bean, yum!
Lemon zest, I didn't use it because I didn't have it :(
2 1/2 cups AP flour, all purpose
1 tsp salt

Cream butter and sugar, until light and fluffy..this will take a few minutes. Beat in egg, vanilla, zest (if using) and salt. Mix in flour on low speed until incorporated. Form dough into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap, or place in ziploc bag. Refrigerate one to two hours or up to 24 hours. Once dough is chilled, roll it out onto a well floured work surface. I like to flour the top of the dough a bit too so it doesn't stick to the rolling pin. Roll a 1/4" thick. Cut cookies and place on a wax, or parchment lined pan. Bake 8-10 minutes (cookies will be slightly browned on the edges) in a 375 degree preheated oven. Cool cookies and ice with royal icing.

Royal Icing
4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
2 tbsp meringue powder, this can be found at JoAnn or Michaels in the cake aisle..maybe at your local grocer?
5tbsp water

Beat powdered sugar and meringue powder with water. You're going to want to beat for about 10 minutes until white and glossy. If you have never iced cookies before you might want to check out a tutorial. Thin icing is great for flooding the cookies as a base. If decorating them you want the icing to be thick. Check out some of these tutorials:  Steps to making the perfect sugar cookie, over at Sweetapolita and Decorating sugar cookies, video from youtube, you can check out many more videos or tutorials. Feel free to ask any questions!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

I'd like to start this post off by saying I used to be the pickiest eater ever..I never liked beans, unless they were green beans. I also wasn't really a fan of sweet potatoes. Well, guess what? It's time to suck it up and enjoy them. They are good for you! Also now that I'm not eating meat anymore, beans are essential to my diet. It's time to suck it up and learn to enjoy some of the things I've said I don't like. Guess what, my sweet potato black bean enchiladas were amazing. Silly me, what have I been missing all these years? Will I miss chicken? Probably not that much. I am reading this great book right now, and flying through it. It's called Skinny Bitch, maybe you've heard of it maybe you haven't. One of my friends advised me to read it after expressing concerns of going vegan. It's an awesome book. These ladies don't mess around, they cut to the chase and let's be honest they're a little vile at times, but they are only stating the truth so I enjoy it! It makes me laugh and sometimes reading it, I feel like I could have wrote it! Some of it is also really sad, particularly the animal parts. It's insane what is done to animals and how the farmers treat them. It made me sick. I'd seen the movie Food Inc. before..a few years ago and apparently that wasn't enough for me..sick huh? You should see that movie too. I guess the more I educate myself and surround myself with other people that can give me more info, the more I want to change. After reading most of this book, I've decided okay, it's definitely time to cut out all meat. As far as dairy goes, that will happen slowly. Also I need to totally lower my sugar intake. I know I've been posting a lot about this lately but it's been on my mind just about everyday for a few weeks. I love all my followers I have now, but I'm sorry to say things are a changing around here! My food and recipes will still be amazing, just a whole lot healthier. Ain't nothing wrong with that! I hope some of you can find this information and these books helpful! I will move onto my scrumptious lunch I had today before I get too far off track. I found this recipe over at Gluten Free Goddess. She has some really great looking meals I can't wait to try! I just noticed these enchiladas won the Whole Foods Budget recipe contest..check it out over at Gluten Free Goddess's blog!

Sweet Potato Black Bean Enchiladas

Green Chile Sauce:
1 C Vegetable Broth
1 Tblsp Arrowroot starch dissolved in cold water (I could not find arrowroot starch, I used corn starch instead and it worked fine)
1 generous C chopped green chiles-hot or mild is fine, I chose mild, next time I will choose hot for sure, I love spicy foods!
2-3 Garlic cloves chopped, I used 3 I like a lot of garlic!
1 tsp cumin or chili powder, I used both!

Combine all ingredients and heat in a saucepan over medium heat until thickened.

1-15oz can organic black beans, rinsed and drained
3-4 garlic cloves minced
Fresh lime juice from one lime
1 sweet potato, cooked and mashed. I left mine a little chunky with skin on
1/2 c roasted green chiles (I didn't have enough green chiles left, so I used one jalepeno instead)
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp chili
salt and pepper to taste
chopped cilantro, depending on your taste, I love cilantro so I used a lot!

Toss beans, garlic and lime juice, set aside. Cook potatoes and mash, throw together with seasonings, chiles, and cilantro. I added the beans to my potatoes as well and mixed all of it up together. Karina over at Gluten Free Goddess laid the potato layer first, then the beans. Do whatever you'd like.

Olive Oil
Corn Tortillas
Cheese, or vegan cheese. I used a vegan cheese sauce I'll share at the bottom.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place 1/4-1/2 of the green chile sauce on the bottom of a baking dish. Heat corn tortillas in oiled saucepan or microwave. They don't need to heat up too much, just a few seconds on each side. Place potato mixture in the middle of each corn tortilla in a line..I hope that makes sense next time I'll take pics! Roll up your stuffed tortillas and place in a baking dish. Top enchiladas with remaining green chile sauce and top with cheese. I used a vegan cheese sauce which can be found here Whole Foods Vegan Momma. I will say I only used 1 cup of water, and I added about 1 tblsp of hummus to thicken it a little. I baked my enchiladas for 10 minutes, then added the cheese sauce and broiled them for about 5 more minutes. If you don't want to add cheese just cook the enchiladas for about 20 minutes. Enjoy! Don't hesitate to ask any questions! Sorry the pictures aren't that great..I'll try better next time! ;)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Vegan/Gluten Free Pasta w Veggies

This is my second Veggie Valentine's post. If any of you have read my recent post about It's time for a change, you'll know I'm some what interested in changing my diet. Right now about the only meat I am eating is chicken. I've been doing my research and reading books about living a healthy life style. I enjoy reading other woman's healthy blogs too. Some people get it, some don't. It's just a choice I've decided I want to make, and yes I know it will take time. I'm the kind of girl that used to eat fast food, junk, chips, and processed crap all the time. Oh, and lots of sugar, with hardly any vegetables or fruits in my diet. I decided I have to put that behind me and start caring about my body. Don't try and steer me to thinking other wise, this is something I am very strongly opinionated on. If you care and have read what I have you'd probably feel the same. It's just nasty what goes into certain foods and how they are grown. It sickens me. This is for me and my future children! :) Anyways, I'm rambling's easy to do when I'm talking about food. So on to my first ever vegan/gluten free recipe. I found this recipe over at Clean Eating Chelsey . If you haven't checked out her blog before, you need to do it now. She's from Chicago like me and most of her recipes are vegan/gluten free, unless other wise noted. She's got some amazing recipes from breakfast to dinner, and snacks in between. She also has an amazing blogroll of all the blogs she loves, which I've also found a lot of blogs I can follow through her. She's part of my inspiration to leading a healthier lifestyle. With all those options and all those recipes! So on to the recipe. I have changed a few things from her. I'll give you my version and make sure to check hers out as well!

Vegan/GF Pasta

1 1/2 C of Brown rice pasta (I use a brand called Tinkyada, I can't even tell it's gf!, I have found this at whole foods)
1 Tblsp Olive Oil
1 batch of cream sauce this is over at Chelsey's site..check it out it's yummy!
1/2 Zucchini, sliced
1/2 Green pepper
1/2 Red pepper
Broccoli (use as much as you'd like!)
1 Carrot
S+P to taste
1 Tsp Oregano
1 Tsp Garlic Powder
Boil your salt water. I always put a small handful of kosher or sea salt in my pasta for flavor. Cook your pasta according to directions. When cooking gluten free pasta, be sure not to over cook or it gets soggy quick. I've also noticed that these Tinkyada noodles stick easily, so make sure you stir them right away and quite a bit. I really have found that these Tinkyada brand noodles are the best gluten free noodles out there. You can find them at whole foods..I haven't purchased them anywhere else yet so I'm not sure who carries them and who doesn't. I've had gluten free noodles before and some can be very unappetizing. Tinkyada is good. While your pasta is cooking saute veggies until soft in a heated saute pan with 1tblsp olive oil. I just sauteed mine for about 5-10 minutes. My peppers still had a bit of a crunch, but I didn't want to saute them to death. Set veggies aside and prepare cream sauce. I'm not a huge fan of dijon mustard, so instead I used ground mustard. I also never measure my seasonings, I just add them to taste! Nutritional Yeast can be found at Whole Foods as well, I've also only bought this at Whole Foods. It comes in a pretty big container, and it also has some vitamins in it. You can look it up online if you are confused about anything. It's just a powder vegans use to add a cheesy/nutty flavor. After you're pasta is done cooking, drain and add to veggies, add your cream sauce and throw together. Heat it up before serving. Add fresh cut basil to the top and enjoy! I really enjoyed my first vegan gluten free dish!

Town and Country Living

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Malted Milk Ball Cupcakes

It's been awhile since I've made cupcakes. I guess I've been more into brownies and cookie lately! I decided to switch it up and go cupcake style. I have plenty of cupcakes I want to try, well I have plenty of sweets I want to try! These cupcakes were really moist and flavorful.

Malted Milk Ball Cupcakes
1 Stick Butter
1 1/2 C Sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla
3 Eggs
1/2 C Buttermilk
1 1/2 C Cake flour
3/4 C Cocoa powder (not dutch processed)
1/2 Tsp Baking soda
1/4 Tsp Salt
1 Cup Malted milk powder (you can find this at your local grocery store)

Preheat oven to 350 and line cupcake pan with liners. Cream butter and sugar with hand mixer, or in stand mixer. Add eggs, slowly one at a time mixing after each one. Sift dry ingredients together. Add 1/3 of dry ingredients. Add half of buttermilk. Add another 1/3 of dry ingredients, and add rest of buttermilk, finally finishing with the last of the dry ingredients. Be careful not to over mix. Taste the batter and if you feel it needs more malted milk powder, add more. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until cupcakes puff back when you touch them with your finger, or a toothpick comes out clean.

Chocolate Malted Buttercream
1 Stick Butter
8oz Cream Cheese
3/4 C Cocoa powder
2 1/2 C Powdered sugar
1 Tsp Vanilla extract
1 C Malted milk powder

Cream butter and cream cheese until fluffy. Add cocoa powder and powdered sugar slowly. This will most likely make a mess! ;) Add vanilla and malted milk powder and mix until incorporated! Once your cupcakes are done baking and cool, pipe frosting onto cupcakes. I added malted milk balls, Valentine's sprinkles, and a cute little straw! I still felt the cupcakes were more chocolatey then malty, but everyone still seemed to love them and they were cute! You can add more malted milk powder and see if that helps! Enjoy!!

 I must say I'm pretty proud of my pictures! I finally got a close up and the background is blurred!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Another Award?!

Another award? Why thank you! Susan over at The Weekly Sweet Experiment awarded me with the Versatile Blogger award. How nice of her! She is such a sweet heart and her blog is amazing and cute! Cupcake background? Yes, please! If you haven't already checked her out please do!!! She will not disappoint. :) She has been one of my lovely bloggers who is great on commenting on pretty much all of my posts and I can remember her from the beginning. I love all her sweet comments. I love all my bloggy friends!!! So thanks Susan! So now it's my turn to share this award with seven friends and tell seven facts about myself!

1. I love animals, but not insects :)
2. I love to cook and bake
3. I love working out
4. I'm usually in bed before 10pm M-F and please don't bother me after that!!!
5. I'm a nanny of 3 great kids
6. I've been married 4 months to my best friend :)
7. I have an older sister, younger brother..and 5 step brothers (not all from the same family)

Now I'm passing this award on to:
Jennifer@Town and Country Living, Yes she's my Mom, but she has an amazing blog and amazing followers. She blogs about food, crafts, photography, country name it she does it. She's an amazing Momma! 
Whit@Black Little Button she's amazing, she's cute and she's a newlywed like me. I had an instant connection the moment I checked her blog..she was a newlywed like me, and she has a burlap header which is awesome..okay her whole blog is awesome!!
Whitney@Keeping Up with the Cyperts  Whitney is great! She's come to love my blog and I love her for that. She always has great stories of her and her new hubby, I know another newlywed :) I guess newlyweds enjoy each other. She also is a great crafter and cook!
Faith@Life, Love and Marriage She's great, I feel like we have a lot in common, and for some reason, I've never told her this before, but she reminds me of this sweet woman I met on my honeymoon! She's also funny has great posts, and is a newlywed!
Leah@My Skinny Tale she is one of my newest followers, and I really enjoy her blog because she has some great work out info, and like I said before the gym is very important to me, she's also got great
Veronica@Adventures of D and V she also is a newlywed, it's strange I've found a lot of my recent followers to be newlyweds through Faith over at Life, Love and Marriage and Brittany over at Fun with the Fullwoods! I love Veronica's blog because she has some great looking gluten free recipes, and if you're an avid follower you'll know I'm wanting to start eating gluten free when possible! :)
Jen@All Things Homemade My dearest friend Jen, she graduated from the Art Institute, and she is truly talented, I always tell her you have to put your crafts out there for other people to see, even make some extra cash. She's just starting out but I feel she deserves this award. I urge all of you to check out her blog, and even though she's new and doesn't have many posts, stick with her and you'll be in awe of what this lady can craft and create..I've now turned her on to the bloggy world so ladies please give her a warm welcome :) 

Please check out all these lovely ladies blogs and show them some love just like Susan showed me, and I showed you! Pass this award along to seven other great bloggers! I can't believe my blog would have ever brought me this much joy. I love all my followers and I can't wait to share the rest of my life w/ all of you awesome woman! I started this blog to share my recipes and didn't realize I'd make so many amazing friends!!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Cajun Chicken Pasta

I've had plenty of cajun chicken pasta in my life, and not only that but I've tried plenty of recipes. You'll notice besides eating a lot of chicken I eat a lot of pasta.This is another recipe from the lovely Pioneer Woman. Did I mention I love her step by step pics? Yes, I know I eat a lot of her food but hey it's darn good! She now has a show on Food Network, which is about the only cooking show I'll watch on their. I watch other shows on Food Network, just not many where they are in their Food Network kitchen, I find it boring. :) The more the hubby and I cook and produce yummy meals, the more I fall in love with it. I'm already wondering what we're going to have for dinner next week! It's fun and exciting to me and I look forward to dinner almost every night! Most of our meals we've been enjoying lately are new recipes, if we don't like them I simply don't post them! All our recipes are tested and approved! We hope you enjoy them as much as we do!

Cajun Chicken Pasta
3 whole Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut Into Cubes
3 teaspoons Cajun Spice Mix, More To Taste
1 pound Fettuccine
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Butter
1 whole Green Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
1 whole Red Bell Pepper, Seeded And Sliced
1/2 whole Large Red Onion, Sliced
3 cloves Garlic, Minced
4 whole Roma Tomatoes, Diced
2 cups Low Sodium Chicken Broth
1/2 cup White Wine
1 cup Heavy Cream
Cayenne Pepper To Taste
S+P to taste

*Hubby cut the recipe in half to feed the two of us and I had a little leftovers for lunch the next day. 
I will also make homemade noodles next time! I was just too tired and lazy, to do it this time around!
Cook pasta according to package directions. Do not over cook unless you like soggy pasta :). Set aside for later use. Season chicken with cajun spice. You can make your own cajun spice or buy the store bought stuff, hubby and I always try and make our own when it comes to mixed spices. It's so much easier and spices are not cheap!  Heat 1 tablespoon of oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a heavy skillet over high heat. Add half the chicken, and do not stir, I'm not sure why this is just what the Pioneer Woman says, and I like to listen to her. Brown the chicken on one side, and when it's done browning, flip over and brown the other side.  Remove the chicken and transfer to a separate plate. Finish the rest of the chicken the same way you just did. Add the rest of your olive oil and butter. When heated add your onions and peppers and sprinkle on the remaining cajun spice and salt to taste. Cook until you get the vegetables as dark as possible, and then add your tomatoes and cook for about 30 seconds. Remove veggies from pan. With the pan on high heat add wine, hopefully you haven't drank it all yet ;) and chicken broth, and cook on high for about 5-10 minutes while deglazing the pan. Reduce heat to low, and whisk in cream, cook over low heat until thickened. Add salt and pepper to taste, this will be spicy! Add in your chicken and vegetables from before and toss with the pasta. Enjoy!
See how yummy that looks? I wish I had some for lunch!

Time for a Change!

I've been doing a lot of research lately on what I put into my body and what nasty things are in foods, and processed foods, and basically how the FDA is a whole joke. I recently read a book called The Beginners Guide To Natural Living, by Larry Cook. Okay, so this book was written awhile ago, but I still find all of it to be useful and mostly true. I recommend this book to anyone and everyone who cares about what food is out there and what you put into your body. Right now I'm trying to get the hubby to read it. I know he doesn't care as much as I do, but I think if he read it he'd be disgusted just as much as I was. It talks about food, supplements, water, exercise, the list goes on. I think I finished this book in a week. :) Now some of you might think it's a little intense, or don't agree with it, well then don't read it, it's not for you. I've been finding myself so grossed out with all the information out there and how much pesticides and basically the poison they put into our food. Larry says try to eat organic where ever you can. Yes, it's way more expensive, but I'd like to know that I'm putting good food into my body, and of course I'm sure not all organic is perfectly clear of pesticides and other things but it's definitely better than non-organic. I could go on and on and on about how messed up the FDA is, and how Monsanto is a horrible company, and how meats and processed foods are packed with stuff that's not good for your body, and stripped of vitamins and minerals..there is literally so much information out there. I'd suggest if you're interested in any of this to read his book and do as much research as you can. There's many books out there. We all know sources can come from anywhere but I believe in what I believe! (And I'm not saying I believe in everything I read!) All of this research and info is really leading me to want to lead a healthy vegan/gluten free lifestyle. Yeah, yeah some people say it's hard and don't do it...well of course it's is hard, but at least I'll know I'm putting good things into my body instead of processed junk that doesn't do anything for my body. Gluten isn't good for anyone, so why not eat gluten free where ever I can? There are so many blogs out there right now that are vegan or gluten free, so I have confidence in my fellow bloggers to find me some great food to eat. Now, I'm not saying I won't ever eat dairy, or gluten ever again, or that it won't be a process to get to that point..I'm just saying if I can sub dairy, and gluten, and have it taste great, what do I have to lose? I've thought about changing my diet for a long time..a diet is something that's a lifestyle change, not a plan to lose 10lbs in one month and then go back to eating normally, let's face it ladies this doesn't work! If you want to lose weight and feel better you really have to try, you have to change your diet, and work out a lot! I actually love working out, I look forward to it every week, so maybe I don't every day but it relieves stress, and I get to see my bff and chat! It's also good to eat everything raw, and whole if you can. My newest thing lately is green smoothies for breakfast. It's a great way to get in fruits and veggies. There are endless options to choose from when it comes to smoothies. I also am eating a salad every night with dinner..the healthy kind of course! The iceburg lettuce doesn't do much. You gotta go with the greens, the spinach mix, kale, and spring mix. I throw in some blueberries, or walnuts or cucumbers, avocados..stuff like that...and then I drizzle my salads with oil and balsamic vinegar. I also try to eat vegetables and fruits through out the day with lunch and for a snack. Now, ladies if I can do this..YOU can do it too. I'm a pretty picky eater, getting better...but I went from eating chicken all the time and junk..processed food, pop, barely any veggies or fruits. It really isn't that hard once you get it down. You just have to care enough and it has to be a choice you'd like to make. I also used to eat chocolate or refined sugar 3x a day..gross! Now, I'm not eating it that much, obviously I still do in moderation, just not as much..hey I did graduate school as a pastry chef ;)  I'm also wanting to eat better so that I look and feel better, and for my future kids..I don't want them eating a lot of that.."garbage" I'm hoping my kids will eat what mommy eats. I feel if that's how I'm eating while I'm pregnant and I don't start them off with processed, sugar loaded foods, and fries that they won't want it, but maybe I'm wrong..I'd like to think I'm right :) I definitely think this will be a process and I'm starting slow so I don't get too overwhelmed.  Call me crazy, I'm sure many people do, but guess what? I don't care! I'm happy about my change and I'm very strongly opinionated about it..if any of you have any comments or questions or anything please feel free to add. I love hearing from all of you and I hope this post wasn't too boring! :) As part of this post, don't forget about heart healthy February and Veggie Valentine's! My Mom and I will be posting veggie recipes through out the month so please check them out!!! Grab my button if you'd like to join in on the fun and spread the word!!! Visit my Mom's blog over at: Town and Country Living..she makes some great meals, she's also a vegetarian, and she's very crafty!!

Town and Country Living

Monday, February 6, 2012

Spaghetti Squash Primavera

My first post for Veggie Valentines, and it's delicious. I found this recipe over at Clean Eating should check out her blog it's pretty awesome. She's a vegetarian, well lot's of her recipes are vegan/gluten free, which I totally dig. Have I expressed my thoughts of having a vegan/gluten free diet? Well, I'll save that for a later post! Anyways, I've never had spaghetti squash before and I've seen it popping up a lot lately and when I saw this recipe I knew I had to give it a go for part of my Veggie Valentine's. What is Veggie Valentine's? It's just something my Mom and I came up with for the month of February being heart healthy. We decided we would post some veggie recipes through out the month of February. I was all in as I'm trying to change my diet and eat more veggies. Anyone can par take and I'll have a button at the end of the post, you can grab it and post it on your page and have fun with Veggie Valentine's as well! Be sure to check out my Mom's blog and look for her Veggie Valentine's as well! She makes some great stuff and is a vegetarian too, Town and Country Living is the name of her blog. This dish was really easy to make and very delicious!

Spaghetti Squash Primavera
1 spaghetti squash, halved and deseeded
1/2 onion, cut into large chunks
1/2 pepper (I used orange), cut into large chunks
1/2 zucchini, cut into large chunks
2 carrots, roughly diced
handful of spinach
1 tbsp. olive oil
4 tbsp. hummus (I used roasted red pepper)
3 tbsp. nutritional yeast
3 basil leaves, chopped
sprinkle of oregano
salt, pepper, and garlic to taste

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Half your squash and take all the seeds out, kind of like you would treat a pumpkin! Don't be intimidated :), place it on a baking sheet with the middle side down, so it lays flat! I placed mine on a parchment lined pan, and bake for 30 minutes.Don't over bake or it will be jiggly Chelsey says..I was a little worried at first because I had just made this for the first time. I baked mine for 40 minutes and it was perfect. You can always pull it out and take a fork and basically scrape the squash, then you'll know whether it's done or not! While the squash is baking, heat a saute pan with your oil and saute veggies until soft, add in spinach at end just to wilt. Feel free to add any other veggies or substitute them if you'd like. When your squash is done baking and cool if you can be patient enough, scrape the insides with a fork, and it looks like spaghetti! How cool?! Toss with the yeast, (which isn't yeast at all see note below) and the hummus, spices and rest of your veggies. Enjoy! I thought this was pretty tasty :)

What the heck is nutritional yeast you might ask? It's a powder that is used for flavoring, it has a nutty, cheese flavor that vegans favor. Some nutritional yeast is fortified with B vitamins. If you'd like more info on nutritional yeast click here: Wikipedia-Nutritional Yeast. I didn't use this, although I wish I had, it was still good with out it, but I'm interested in how it would have turned out.

Town and Country Living

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cake Mix Cookies

These are by far the easiest cookies I have ever made. I found them via pinterest via Sweet Sugar Belle Now normally I don't make cookies or cake, with cake mix..I like everything home made! When I saw these I wanted to try them because they were easy, and so adorable..and perfect for Valentine's Day. They were pretty tasty too! If you like simple, tasty, cookies..I urge you to make these! They are very soft, and stay soft and fresh longer than your normal cookie recipe.

Easy Cake Mix Cookies
1 boxed cake mix (I used Devil's Food)
1/2 cup {1 stick} unsalted butter at room temp
2 eggs
1 1/2 to 2 tbsp. flour
1-2 tsp. vanilla or other flavoring (optional)

Place all ingredients in a mixing bowl and mix until's that easy! Scoop dough onto parchment lined baking pans and bake 10-12 minutes. I used a silpat..just because! Well, it was a knock off silpat I got for my bridal shower..I hope to have a real silpat one day! Let cool on the sheet, and enjoy!

 The before..up above, I decided to roll my cookies in tiny heart sprinkles!
 The after! See how pretty they are?
 I love the cute little sprinkles..they are perfect!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...