Category Archives: Recipes

Recipe: Beans and Greens

As I research heart health, two foods keep coming up as good for your heart: leafy greens and beans (red and yellow, black and white, they’re delicious in our sight). So in honor of heart health, here’s a quick, easy, tasty recipe for Beans and Greens.

Beans and GreensIngredients:

1/2 TBS olive oil

1 small onion, chopped (approx. 1/2 cup)

1/2 cup water

2 tsp beef bullion paste (or 1 packet powdered)

4 cloves garlic, minced

8 cups kale, chopped into 1-2″ pieces (approx 6-8 oz)

1 cup broccoli slaw

1 can beans, drained and rinsed (approx 2 cups)

Parmesan cheese, grated

salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat oil in 6 quart stock pot over medium heat. Saute onions for 2 minutes.
  2. Dissolve beef bullion in water, add to pot, and stir. Add garlic and kale, stir, cover and cook 5 minutes.
  3. Add broccoli slaw and beans, stir. Cover and cook 5 minutes.
  4. Salt to taste. Top with Parmesan cheese and serve.
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Clean Out the Fridge Soup

 

Clean Out the Fridge Soup is one of my favorites.  You cook it -from scratch- using whatever leftovers and neglected produce are in your fridge. The resulting soup is different every time and your Tupperware is set free and reunited in the cabinet.

Let’s get started!

Step 1: Pull out all of your dilapidated vegetables and abandoned meat, especially the ones that are hiding in dark corners.  Be brave, but not stupid.  Give the meat a sniff, and inspect the plants. Wilted does not mean inedible; plants don’t need to be pretty to be soup.

4Step 2: Put the soup pot on the stove and turn the burner on to medium or medium high.

Step 3: Chop up a medium onion and mince 2-3 cloves of garlic.  If you’re adding celery, mushrooms, or raw meat, chop those too. When the pot is hot, add your choice of fat: oil, butter, bacon, etc. Olive oil is the healthiest, but butter and bacon add flavor. When the fat is hot, sauté the onion and garlic (and celery and mushrooms and meat) until tender or, in the case of meat, browned.

The vegetables in soup are like a contemporary music band; the right combination creates beautiful harmonies.  Onion and garlic are your lead vocals and your keyboard or guitar, water and salt/seasoning are the sound wave vibrations that your ears translate into music.  Without these, it’s just not a band. (If you’re not a fan of onion and/or garlic, you need remedial eating classes.)

Leftover cooked meat can be added later since it only needs to be heated, not cooked. Remember that you can mix your meats…one serving of meatloaf, a chicken leg, half a pork chop, etc.

Step 4: Add water.  I add about 6 cups of water.  If that feels like too much for your family, start with less.  If your soup gets crowded, you can always add more water later.

5Step 5: Choose and chop up your veggies; smaller is generally better, but go with whatever you prefer.  If you use a food processor, your kids won’t be able to pick out the tiny bits in the broth.

Celery, carrots, zucchini, spinach, broccoli, kale, etc are your drums.  You can make a band without them, but why bother?  If the point of soup is to give your body nutrients, don’t leave out the colored plants.

Corn, meat, okra, turnips, squash, sweet potato, etc are the violins and harmonicas.  If you like them, they add a special flare to the band.  If you don’t like them, don’t add them; no harm done.

Beets are divas with control over the volume of their own microphones.  I like beets, but I don’t add them to soup unless I want beet soup.  You will only taste the diva.

Boil your soup just as long as you need to in order for everything to be tender.  If you chop your ingredients small, they cook in 10 minutes or less.

Step 6: Add cooked leftovers. Now that your veggies are tender, add cooked meat, cooked rice, lentils, cheese, etc. Lower the heat and simmer the soup for five minutes to heat up the additions.

Step 7: Add seasoning. The easiest way to add seasoning is to add bullion paste, cubes, or packets.  Bullion gives you seasoning and salt all in one easy step.  Add a little, taste, add more if needed, taste. This is also when you can add herbs, pepper, or spices.  When in doubt, let Simon and Garfunkel guide you: add “Parsley, Sage, Rosemary, and Thyme”.

3Step 8: Add the secret ingredient: salt.  I used to have trouble making soup.  At first I would throw a lot of things into a pot and serve it.  My husband got a few nasty surprises since he was generally the first one to taste it, so I started sampling dinner before dishing it.  If a soup didn’t taste right, I’d add a little of this or that or those and finally my husband would ask “did you add salt?”  It only took me five years to start listening to him.  Before you despair, add a little salt and taste. Add a little more and taste.  It’s very hard to take extra salt back out. If you over salt, try adding potato.

When it tastes good, soup’s done.

I know it can be nerve wracking to cook without a recipe. Some of you are panicking right now!  NO recipe?  That’s ludicrous!  Anarchy won’t help me, Katie!  Calm down and start by clicking here.  It will lead you to a page with multiple soup recipes.  Experiment when you feel comfortable.  Anarchy comes with practice!

“So they ate and were filled, and they took up seven large baskets of leftover fragments.” Mark 8:8

Cuddle Up, it’s Chili

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I decided to post this chili recipe for two reasons. 1. Winter winds have finally hit Delaware in full force and my fingers are numb. 2. It’s what I’m making for dinner today and I can’t wait to eat it.

INGREDIENTS:

2 (14.5 oz) cans diced tomatoes, not drained

2 (14.5 oz) cans kidney beans, drained (or pinto beans, or a combination of beans)

 1 lb lean ground beef

1 lb ground Italian sausage (or substitute all beef or all turkey Italian sausage)

1 large onion

3 stalks celery

1 green bell pepper

1 red bell pepper

1 medium zucchini

3 cloves garlic

1 TBS Worcestershire sauce

1 TBS chili powder

1 TBS dried oregano

2 tsp ground cumin

1 tsp dried basil

1 tsp cayenne pepper

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp white sugar

1 tsp salt (Kosher or sea salt is best)

1 tsp black pepper (fresh ground is best)

DIRECTIONS:

Chop onion, celery, peppers, and zucchini. Mince the garlic.

Cook the ground beef, ground sausage, onion, celery, zucchini, and peppers over medium high heat until the meats are evenly browned.

Add the rest of the ingredients and stir well. Cover and simmer over medium low heat for 30 minutes. Serve.

YIELD:

8-10 cups

NOTES:

If you have the time, feel free to simmer longer or once the meats are brown and the veggies are tender, throw it all in a slow cooker for the afternoon.

The splurge of spices makes this chili spectacular and allows for alterations. For example, I’m out of bell peppers, but I have a bag of frozen chopped chard, so I’ll throw that in instead. Voila!

Apple Sandwiches

Fall is the time of year when apples rule and my new favorite way to eat them is Apple Sandwiches. The sandwiches are moist, crunchy, easy to make, and a fun way eat your apple-a-day.

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Apple Sandwich

1 apple – Honey Crisp, Granny Smith, or eater’s choice

1-2 ounces Cheddar cheese, sliced

1 slice lunch meat

 

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Directions:

Start on one side and slice the apple into quarter inch slices. These first few slices will look like circles. When you near the core, rotate the apple 90 degrees and slice again. These slices will look like half circles. Repeat this twice more until your core is a rectangle and your final slices are too.

Build your sandwich using apple slices instead of bread.

 

Keep me as the apple of your eye;
    hide me in the shadow of your wings. (Psalm 17:8 NIV)

 

Salsa Guacamole Recipe

imageRich in omega 3 and breath freshening garlic, this guacamole goes great with tortilla chips or any dish inspired south of the border.

Ingredients

3 ripe avocados

4 cloves garlic

3 scallions

2 Tb lemon juice

1/2 cup tomato-5 oz. grape or 1 Roma

1/2 tsp salt

2 Tb fresh cilantro

 

imageScoop the avocado out of the shell and squish it with a fork.

Chop the scallions, tomato, and cilantro. Mince the garlic. Mix all ingredients. Scoop and enjoy!

 

 

 

National Homemade Soup Day (with recipes)

2014 Sept mid 023Happy Homemade Soup Day! Celebrate with a warm bowl of nutritious goodness!

Soup can be a helpful part of your weight loss journey if your soup is Sexy (Slurp This, Not That).

Making homemade soup is easier than you think and tastes delicious. Click here for step by step instructions for homemade soup in 20 minutes.

Click on a recipe below to try a new soup.

Multi Bean Soup

Potato Chicken Cheddar Soup

Cucumber Soup

Hearty Lentil Soup

 

Southwest Salad Recipe

imageSouthwest Salad

Ingredients:

2 cups lettuce, chopped

1 cup chopped or sliced vegetables of your choice: carrot, cucumber, bell pepper, mushroom, broccoli, etc.

1/4 cup black beans

1/4 cup turkey or chicken

1 oz. cheddar cheese, grated

3 tortilla chips, crushed

3 Tb salad dressing – Ranch Southwest OR mix your own using 3 Tb any Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing and a few drops of hot sauce