Posts Tagged ‘food processor’

Pesto Sauce with a Twist

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

I have wanted to share this recipe with you all for a while now. Two things happened that provoked me to finally share it. First off the basil in my garden is ready to rock. And secondly I was stoked to find organic, gluten-free¬†penne pasta at Costco.¬†The brand they carry¬†at my Costco is truRoots and check out this¬†ingredient list: brown rice flour, corn flour, quinoa flour, and amaranth flour. All organic! I have been missing pasta soooo much since going¬†gluten free¬†several months ago.¬†Discovering this package of penne pasta at Costco made me¬†giddy!¬†And I wanted to enjoy them in various special ways…not just with a traditional marinara sauce. Pesto sauce is a fun alternative to marinara…plus¬†you can make it in mere minutes!

Most¬†of you know I adore kale and am always looking for new, interesting way to prepare it (however a simple raw kale salad remains my favorite way to enjoy kale!). This pesto sauce uses kale in it! And no pine nuts. Don’t get me wrong…I love pine nuts. Love them! But man, those little dudes are pricey! Plus they are not really a staple in our diet so it is hit or miss if I will actually have them on hand when I crave pesto. However the ingredients in this Pesto Sauce with a Twist¬†are almost always readily available in my kitchen/garden. :)

Ingredients:

1/2 cup walnuts

1 – 2 cloves garlic

1 large bunch of kale, de-stemmed

generous handful of fresh basil leaves

3/4 cups olive oil

juice from 1/2 lemon

2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

salt and pepper to taste

1 + tablespoons of water (if needed to thin out sauce)

Directions:

Add all ingredients to food processor and pulse until desired constistancy. Add water as needed.

ENJOY!

Sarah
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Dust off your Crock Pot and Get Ready to be Inspired!

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

A friend of mine shared this photo with me. She spent $350 and 4 hours putting together 40 crock-pot meals for her family of 6! Check it out:

She is a full time working mama of 4 busy boys. Coming home in the evenings after work, sports practices, school events, etc made dinner time kind of hectic for them. Being the resourceful mama she is, she made a plan that would allow for more quality family time in the evenings AND save them money. A trip to the grocery store and a few hours later, she has healthy, ready-made, meals to throw¬†in¬†her crock-pot in the morning.¬†And¬†will come home in the evening¬†to a yummy smelling, home-made, family dinner¬†…FOR 40 NIGHTS! I am in serious awe!

She shared a few tips:

  • Select 20 recipes and double them. This cuts down on the initial meal planning and prep time.
  • This is the perfect opportunity to buy in bulk. Do so and take full advnatage of the savings.
  • Clearly label each bag, including any extra that need to be added at the end of cook time such as rice, noodles, etc.
  • Use a food processor to assist with all that chopping.
  • Use pintrest to find crockpot recipes that freeze well.¬†My friend¬†did a trial run with a few to ensure they would taste yummy once thawed.

After chatting with¬†my friend¬†about this, I know exactly what I am asking for for my birthday this month…a family sized crock-pot! ;)¬†Yep, believe or not I have never actually used a crock-pot. Although now I am super eager to try something like this for my family. What about you? :)

Do you use a crock pot to simplify family dinners? Any tips, suggestions, or links to share? Would love to hear from YOU!

-Sarah

Tasty Tuesday: Black Bean Dip

Tuesday, February 12th, 2013

In making an effort to get more protein in my diet, I am replacing a favorite snack of chips and salsa with black bean dip and veggies! It is just as yummy¬†as chips and salsa but offers a little extra nutrients, including protein. You will love how easy and delicious this recipe is!¬†I enjoyed a big ol’ scoop of it yesterday along side my infamous kale salad. :)

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked black beans*

¬Ĺ cup of salsa

1- sliced jalapeno (or less depending on desired temperature level; be sure to remove seeds unless you like your bean dip extra spicy!)

2-3 diced green onions

¬Ĺ tsp garlic pepper

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp chili powder

¬Ĺ tsp salt

4 tbsp water

Directions:

Cook all ingredients in a sauce pan on medium- low heat for 10 minutes. Add additional water if needed to keep mixture from drying out. Pour into food processor and process until smooth. Serve with chopped veggies such as red pepper, celery, and carrot sticks. Enjoy!

* Directions for cooking with dried beans: Many people shy away from using dried beans because rumor has it they are difficult and time-consuming to prepare. However all that is really involved in preparing dried beans is a pot of boiling water. That‚Äôs it! Now there are a few different methods but I prefer the ‚Äúquick cook method‚ÄĚ. Here‚Äôs how I do it. First fill a pot with water (no need to measure because you are draining the water anyway).¬† Then add measured desired amount of beans (1 cup of dried beans = about 2.5 cups of cooked beans) or just dump a bunch pf beans into the pot (what I usually do and then measure after they have cooked). Allow to come to a full boil, then reduce heat and cover. Simmer gently for approximately an hour then test for softness. Drain water and rinse beans before using them. I usually cook a large pot at once so I have some left over to stash in the fridge and/or freezer when throwing together a last minute quick meal.¬† Dried black beans are waaayyy cheaper than canned and come in more eco-friendly packaging!

-Sarah

Tasty Tuesday: 5 Fun Ways to Get Kids Eating Veggies!

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

We all know how important it is to have a diet high in fresh, whole foods, including lots of vegetables! Veggies are chock-full of vitamins and nutrients that have significant immediate and long term benefits.

Although we also know that sometimes it’s a struggle to get veggies into our kids. Here are 5 fun ways to encourage your little ones to enjoy vegetables!

1. PRESENTATION: Putting out a plate full of raw, freshly chopped, colorful veggies can entice kids to munch and nibble on veggies for a snack. Many kids prefer to graze throughout the day, so having healthy options readily available for them such as a veggie platter can avoid the constant opening of the fridge and pantry doors as they rummage for food. My kids’ favorites are red pepper, cucumber, cherry tomatoes, and carrots.

2. DIPS and SAUCES: If a beautiful veggie tray isn’t quite enough¬†on it’s own¬†to get your little ones excited about eating veggies, try adding some fun dips to go along with them. Hummus is one of our favorites, but many kids like a ranch style dressing.

3. SMOOTHIES – Cannot say enough about smoothies. They are such a great way to get all kinds of healthy things into your family’s diet…even things that don’t taste all that great. Fruit seems to mask almost anything in a smoothie. Frozen fruit is even better as it gives a nice, creamy textures to a smoothie and is extra refreshing!

4. BURRITOS – Another food that is easy to hide all kinds of veggies in is a burrito!¬†You can dice up veggies in a food processor into super small pieces and sneak them into your kids’ burritos. I feel like my kids are happy with anything wrapped in a tortilla.

5. OWNERSHIP – Giving kids ownership over their food can definitely impact food choices. This could be planting a garden, shopping together at a local farmer’s market, or even having them prepare snacks/food for themselves. I have one friend that whenever I visit her I am amazed at how self-reliant her children are in preparing themselves a healthy snack. For example her six year old will pull a red pepper out of the fridge, slice it up on a cutting board, put it on a plate, and sit at the table to eat it…and then put his plate in the sink when he is done. Obviously she has taught him how to do this and while that took a little time on the front end, the end result is well worth the time investment!

What tips and tricks do you have to help encourage little ones to eat more veggies? Would love to hear from you!

-Sarah

 

Tasty Tuesday: Raw Vegan Spinach Dip

Tuesday, November 13th, 2012

I am almost always looking for new ideas of what do with greens…as much as I love green smoothies and kale salads, a little variety is definitely nice when it comes to eating healthy. I am in the home stretch right now of a two week cleanse where I learned some great new recipes and ideas for incorporating greens into our meals. One of my favorite new snacks is this raw, vegan, spinach dip**. It is a super duper quick snack, taking less than 5 minutes to prepare. Basically you throw the following ingredients in a food processor for a few minutes and voila, delicious and nutritious spinach dip!

Ingredients:

3 cups of fresh spinach

1 large avocado, pitted

juice from one lemon

1 clove of garlic

small sliver (approx. 1/8 teaspoon) of fresh peeled ginger*

sprinkle of curry*, cumin*, and salt

dash of cayenne pepper*

* these are intense flavors, especially when used in raw foods…a little goes a long way!

Directions:

Mix all ingredients in food processor until smooth. Serve immediately with raw veggies or flaxseed crackers.

ENJOY!

-Sarah

**recipe shared courtesy “The Conscious Cleanse” **