Supper: Quinoa and vegetables

Do you ever have those days when you think about eating healthy, exercising more, etc.? I spend a lot of time thinking about what food to make that is healthy and will help us improve our cardiac conditions and cholesterol numbers, lose a little weight, and feel better overall. I think about brown rice, quinoa, chia seeds (what am I going to do with those chia seeds in my pantry?). I think I may even engage in fantasy thinking in that if I think hard enough about losing weight, I could actually lose some poundage. And then I watch the Great British Baking Show, get a new Cook’s magazine, and see interesting looking baked goods in my FB feed. What to do?

In my pantry there is healthy food. I found this fabulous quinoa/rice mixture that cooks up in ten minutes. Yay! No rinsing required.  I figured I should make a casserole or salad of some sort. I found two fully cooked turkey drumsticks in my freezer and some homemade broth. I have a package of frozen tri-color peppers and onions. I could assemble this all together and that would be supper.

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Ingredients are approximate amounts: Serves 4

  • 4 servings quinoa/rice mixture (made by Minute Rice), cooked according to package
  • 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 cup mixed peppers and onion strips
  • 1 cup broth
  • about 2 cups diced cooked turkey from two drumsticks
  • 1 cup frozen peas, added at the last because it looked like it needed more vegetable and more color

Easy directions: saute peppers and onions in the olive oil in large enough skillet to accommodate the quinoa mixture as well. Stir in the turkey then add the cooked grains and 1/2 the broth. Stir to mix on low heat. Add the frozen peas and the rest of the broth; stir on the heat for a few minutes then turn off heat, cover skillet and let sit for 5-10 minutes. I let it sit to steam the peas a bit and because Hubby wasn’t home yet.

If your broth is seasoned that might be sufficient with some salt and pepper. I added a pinch of tandoori seasoning but that was not adequate. Hubby ate his with a healthy sprinkling of Worcestershire Sauce. Me, too, and that did the trick.

This is a basic casserole with meat and grains and vegetables. Any of these three ingredients can be changed up at whim and/or depending on what you have on hand. My mother would throw all the leftovers in one pot and cook them…usually she would over-cook them. Sorry, Mom, but that’s the way it was!

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Blueberry Breakfast Cake

This looked very interesting on the King Arthur Flour Facebook feed so I set out to make it. Believe it or not, I followed the recipe exactly except I used a non-round pan to bake it.

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This is the link to the recipe: Blueberry Breakfast Cake. This recipe uses sour cream and cottage cheese with 3 eggs and some sugar and flour. There is a custard like layer on the bottom with the fruit on top. The cinnamon-sugar topping gives it a nice crunch.

  • 3 large eggs
  • heaping 1/2 cup sugar
  • 6 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 cup small-curd cottage cheese
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries, fresh
  • cinnamon-sugar, for topping

Heat oven to 350 F. Spray a 9 inch pan with cooking spray. The pan needs to have 2 inch sides. My pan is about 10 x 7 inches. Beat the eggs with the sugar then add the butter, cottage cheese, sour cream, and vanilla. Mix in the dry ingredients. Pour into the prepared pan and sprinkle the berries evenly on top. Bake for 50 minutes. A toothpick inserted into the center should come out clean. Sprinkle the cake with a generous amount of cinnamon-sugar. Let cool for 30 minutes before serving. IMG_0095

Ginger Chicken in Crock-pot

Hubby and I were driving on Main Street and noticed a Thai ice cream shop. So he says “ginger ice cream is really good”. Somehow the conversation ran on to ginger chicken, and then we ordered Chinese take-out after our camping weekend. This all inspired me to actually cook something other than chicken thighs on the grill and/or hamburgers and/or tuna noodle salad. So here is my version of Ginger Chicken with Vegetables and Rice. The amounts are approximations as I did not measure. This is why I am not writing a cookbook. No editor worth her salt would let this pass!

 

 

Get out your handy dandy crock-pot and supper will be ready when you get home from work. And the oven doesn’t have to heat up the house.

  • 4 chicken breasts; these were four medium-sized frozen ones
  • thumb sized chunk of fresh ginger root, peeled and minced
  • one onion, diced
  • 3 medium carrots,sliced
  • 1/4-1/2 cup broth
  • a good sized squirt of Dijon mustard
  • at least one Tablespoon of honey
  • a shake or two of garlic powder; ideally one wold use minced garlic but I forgot about the garlic until I was putting the lid on the pot.

I put all of the above in the crock-pot, vegetables on bottom, and cook on low for 7-8 hours. When I got home from work I added the following:

  • 1/2-3/4 cup frozen mixed peppers; if I had fresh I would have chopped these and put them in at the beginning.
  • 1/2-1 cup frozen green peas
  • 1/2 pint leftover rice from the Chinese restaurant

Stir this to mix all and continue to cook on low (or high) to get everything hot, about one more hour. I served this in bowls and had leftovers for the next night.

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So this is how I cook. I throw things together. The above could be made with all fresh vegetables if you have them. The rice could be kept separate or left out altogether. You could use more broth if you like a more soup-y dish. One could serve it with soy sauce. I will probably make something like this again but it won’t be exact. Most of you home cooks out there do this same thing.