Empanadas

Today I was balancing my baby on my hip while unloading my buggy at the grocery store before checkout (for those of you unfamiliar with the term, “buggy” is the southern word for “grocery cart” 😉 ). When I was about halfway through, the woman behind me came up and asked, “May I help you with this?” Of course I was surprised, but I gave my consent, and she proceeded to help me unload the rest of my groceries. After I paid, she also helped me bag them up, and gave me a smile as she left. I’m sure she won’t think much of it, but I can assure you, it brightened my day tremendously, and I will definitely remember her act of kindness. I hope that I will be a blessing to others in my life as she was to me. 

On that note, here is a nice little recipe I’m sharing with you – I hope you can make it yourself and brighten a loved one’s day!

Ingredients:

1/2 onion, chopped

1 clove garlic, diced finely

1/4 green bell pepper, chopped

1/3 c chopped mushrooms

1/2 bag of Morning Star vegetarian crumbled burger 

Garlic powder

Onion powder

Taco Seasoning

Salt
Directions:

Heat skillet on med-high heat.

Sauté onions and garlic for 1-2 minutes, add green bell pepper and sauté 3-5 minutes or until bell pepper is tender. Add crumbled burger and seasonings. Lower heat slightly and add seasonings to taste. Sauté 4 minutes. Turn off heat.

Roll out premade biscuits into flat 4-5″ diameter circle. Place small spoonful of sautéed mixture on one side of dough. Fold dough over and seal closed with fingers or fork. Bake at 400°F for 10 minutes or until bottoms are golden brown. Enjoy! 

Advertisements

Tropical Orange Sorbet

Nothing like a cold treat on a summer night after the noise quiets down and the lights are lowered. Tasty, fresh and sweet; this little evening splurge was right on target. (Romantic, too, if I might add 😉 ).

1 Orange

3/4 c frozen fruit punch concentrate (I like the 100% juice, but use whatever you have)

2 tbsp white sugar

2 c ice cubes

Place all ingredients in blender (VitaMix work great for this). Start on lowest setting and gradually speed up. Blend until the consistency is smooth, but be careful not to blend for too long or the sorbet will melt. Serve with a touch of romance!

Servings: 2

Mediterranean Pasta

It was a busy day for me today! I had cleaning, laundry and dishes to catch up on, not to mention watching my ever active baby trying new tastes (furniture, the cat, his blankie, etc) every chance he gets. Needless to say, I didn’t have time for a huge meal, but this dish was simple and fairly quick – and the best part: my husband says I’m the best at making zucchini taste great (he usually doesn’t like it). Try this recipe for yourself and let me know if he is right or not 😄.

Ingredients:

Few tablespoons light olive oil

1/2 med onion, cut lengthwise and sliced into 1/4″ wedges

2 cloves finely diced garlic

1 med zucchini, chopped

1 chopped roma tomato or 1/3 can diced tomatoes

Onion powder

Salt

Heat oil in skillet or frying pan on med heat (just a tad higher). Sauté onions and garlic for 1-2 minutes, then add zucchini. Sauté for 6-8 minutes or until tender. Add tomatoes and seasonings and sauté 2 more minutes. Serve over seasoned spaghetti noodles (I like to stir olive oil, salt, garlic powder and parmesan into it). Top with crubled feta cheese. Enjoy!

Serves 2

Tip: This recipe goes great with a light salad

Veggie Lover’s Patties

Ok, so I admit it: I am partly a “dump cook.” That is, I enjoy following recipes, but who doesn’t like improvising – and if the occasion calls for it, just putting ingredients together until it feels right?

With that said, I will do my best to give directions for this recipe. 🙄

Directions:

In large saucepan boil 3-4 cups of water, 1 med chopped carrot, 3 chopped celery sticks and 1/4 onion, and seasonings (onion powder, garlic powder, salt) for 30 minutes or until vegetables are tender. (You can adjust the seasonings to your taste – it should be a little salty.

Turn off heat and stir in quick oats until thickened (similar to the texture of thick breakfast oatmeal). Remove from heat and let set for 5 minutes until stiff.

Preheat oven to 425°F. On a well greased pan/cookie sheet place heaping spoonful (approximately 3-4 tbsp) of mixture. Mash into shape (I like mine nicely rounded) about 1/4″ thick. Bake for 30 minutes on bottom rack, flip and bake 10-15 minutes more.

I served the patties on buns with feta cheese, tomato and mayo, but they also work great with gravy or however you prefer.

Enjoy!

Makes 6-9 patties

Breakfast of Color

Do you ever wake up on the weekend in the mood for something different, but don’t feel like spending all morning in the kitchen? If so, here is a great recipe to try out!

My mom always told me meals should be colorful and appetizing – and this one fits that description perfectly. If you prefer, add a few slices of tomatoes on the side for a few bonus vitamins. I like to salt mine 😉

Ingredients:

1/2 block of med-firm tofu

Small handful of greens (well cooked kale or raw baby spinach are my 2 favorites)

1/4 onion, chopped

1/2 roma tomato, chopped

Garlic powder

Onion powder

Cayenne

Salt

Directions:

Heat oil in skillet on med-high heat (I prefer iron skillets). Saute onions for 1 -2 minutes then add tofu, greens and tomatoes. Allow to slightly brown without stirring for 2-3 minutes before flipping with spatula. Season with a few dashes of cayenne, garlic and onion powder. Salt to taste. Place on toasted english muffin with 1/2 slice of swiss cheese. Yum!

Servings:4

(You can adjust the recipe to your liking. It is always fun to try new tastes. Also, if you prefer eggs to tofu, just mix all the ingredients together and scramble on medium heat).

Apple-Pear Crisp

Today the weather is warm and windy, just perfect for a sweet bite and sitting on the swing outside. Enjoy!


Ingredients:


3 med apples

1 ripe pear

A few tablespoons sugar

1/4 tsp cinnamon
Directions:


Core and slice fruit. Mix with cinnamon and sugar. Place in pie plate or 9×9 baking dish. Top with crumbled dough. Bake at 425°F for 25 minutes. Enjoy!

Dough Recipe:
3/4 c all purpose flour

1/2 c quick oats

Few tablespoons sugar

Cinnamon

A few tablespoons melted butter
Directions:


Mix all ingredients together until butter combines evenly with flour (the dough should be dry and crumbly). 

Mix and Match

This evening was a rush to get supper on the table, so I just threw together some brussel sprouts, leftover pinto beans, slice of tomato and corn on the cob. Took less than 20 minutes and tasted delicious!

Brussel Sprouts:
Ingredients:

1/2 bag of frozen brussel sprouts

Lemon juice

Olive oil

Salt

Dash of Garlic powder
Directions:

Heat brussels sprouts on med-high heat for 8-10 minutes. Drizzle olive oil and lemon juice over. Add salt and garlic to taste. Voilá!

Servings: 3
Slow-Cooked Pinto Beans:

Soak 3 c. of dry pinto beans for 6-10 hours. Drain and rinse. Place in reg sized crock pot (approx 5 qt. ) and cover with cold water. Cook on high for 8 hours or over night. Add salt to taste, 1 tsp. onion powder, 1/2 tsp. garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp cumin powder. Cook on low 2 hours. Serve. 

Servings: 6
Corn-on-the-Cob:

Place fresh corn in pot of water. Bring to a boil and cook on med-high heat for 10-12 minutes. Serve with butter and salt. 

Quick and Fancy

I created this recipe a few months ago when we were in the mood for fine dining, but not willing to spend the extra buck for it. This combination of pasta and salad is now one of our favorite meals, and we have it almost every week. I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t love it. 

Feel free to add your own flair to these recipes and let me know how it turns out in the comments!

Fettucini Mushroom Alfredo:

Ingredients:

1 box fettucini pasta

1 jar of Alfredo cheese sauce

A handful (or 2) of chopped mushrooms

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt to taste

1/2 tsp garlic powder

Few dashes of basil
Directions:

Cook fettucini according to box instructions. Drain, then place back into pot. Throw chopped mushrooms, seasonings, oil and cheese sauce on top. Stir and cover with lid for 5 minutes or so to allow the mushrooms to cook a bit (with stove heat off). Serve and enjoy! 
Servings: 4
Greek Salad

Ingredients:

1 large romaine lettuce (chopped) 

2 med tomatoes (diced)

1 chopped cucumber

1 can of black olives

6-8 oz crumbled feta cheese

Salt to taste

A few tablespoons of classic olive oil

A few tablespoons of lemon juice
Directions:

 Toss all ingredients together. Voilá! 
Servings: 4 

Depends on the consumer. My husband can down this salad with me in the course of a meal and  might have enough leftover to take with him for lunch the next day if we’re lucky. 

(If you like red onions, throw in a few slices – I don’t care for them, and neither does my husband. I know: they’re good for me… I will eat extra garlic instead 😉 ). 

Banana Bread

My younger brothers love bananas. They also love my homemade banana bread. Truthfully, I don’t like bananas. If I am hungry and all there is to eat are bananas, I would wait. And the funny thing is, my husband is the same way. But, you know what? We absolutely love this banana bread!  It is delicious and nutritious – and best of all a great snack or breakfast addition when we’re on the go. So, whether you love bananas or despise them, this recipe just may be a winner. 

(For most people, banana bread without nuts in it simply isn’t an option – however, my husband is allergic to most nuts, so I just leave them out. But, if you love nuts – add a handful or two of chopped pecans.)

Ingredients:

3 ripe bananas

1/3 c melted butter

3/4 c sugar 

1 egg

1-2 tsp vanilla

1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)

2 tsp baking powder

1 and 1/2 c all-purpose flour
Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F

Mash bananas with fork till smooth (sometimes it is hard to make them perfectly smooth – just do the best you can). Add remaining ingredients except flour and baking powder. Mix well. Add baking powder and flour. Mix well. Pour into 9×9 baking dish and bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. 

Enjoy!