Quinoa Tabouli Salad

quinoa tabouli salad

This past week we packed up our house, moved everything into storage and moved in with my parents. We’re closing on the new house on Monday (if we can avoid the hurricane) and will hopefully be moved in before we head to Boston next Friday. Basically, I haven’t had much time to think about blogs, let alone what we are going to do while we’re in Boston (if anyone has any suggestions, please share!) but I managed to take some pictures of the quinoa tabouli salad I made recently so here’s the recipe! It’s delicious and will be stay just as delicious all week for lunch.

Ingredients:
– 1 1/2 cups quinoa
– 1/2 english cucumber, cut in pieces
– grape tomatoes, cut in half
– 1 can of beans (garbanzo beans are best but I didn’t have any so I used northern beans), rinse and drain
– green onion
– fresh mint
– parsley
– feta cheese

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Dressing:
– 1/2 cup olive oil
– balsamic vinegar
– 2 tbsp lemon juice
– minced garlic
– salt and pepper
*(mix everything together in a mason jar and set aside)

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1. Make quinoa according to the package and set aside.
2. In a large bowl combine cucumber, tomatoes, beans, green onions, mint, parsley and quinoa.
3. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir.
4. Add feta cheese on top.

I followed [this recipe] but made adjustments based on what ingredients I had. You could easily switch it up with a different dressing or add in other veggies you have in the fridge!

Crockpot Taco Chicken Recipe

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Since we’re trying to clear out the fridge before we move this weekend (eek!) I’ve been trying not to buy too much food to get us through the week. That’s where crockpot meals have come to the rescue! I can make one thing in the crockpot on Monday and it will last us through the week. Last week’s recipe was taco chicken. You can eat it over rice, with chips, in a tortilla or by itself. It’s so good you will want to try it every way!

Ingredients:
– 2 chicken breasts
– 1 16oz jar of salsa
– 1 can black beans, drained
– half a bag frozen corn
– 2 garlic cloves, chopped
– 1 tbsp chili powder
– 1/2 tbsp cumin
– 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
– white rice
– toppings: shredded cheese, cilantro, sour cream, guacamole

  1. Put everything except the rice and toppings in the crockpot, make sure the chicken is covered.
  2. Cook for 8 hours on low.
  3. Cook the rice before the chicken is done.
  4. When chicken is done, shred it with a fork and stir in crockpot.
  5. Create the bowl by first adding rice followed by the chicken mixture and top with any toppings (I had cheese and cilantro)Enjoy!

Crockpot Mac and Cheese Recipe

mac and cheese

I think I’ve mentioned this mac and cheese on the blog before but I can’t believe I haven’t shared the recipe yet! It’s literally my favorite thing ever. Trust me and just make it and I promise it will soon become your favorite thing ever as well. As long as you like cheese (and if you don’t, I’m not sure we can be friends anymore ;)) there’s nothing not to love! Alright, here’s the recipe:

Ingredients:
1 box of shell pasta
4 cloves garlic
4 tbsp butter
3 cups whole milk
4 oz cream cheese
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 eggs

1. Cook the noodles al dente.
2. In a saucepan melt the butter and add garlic for one minute.
3. Add cream cheese, 2 cups of milk (save 1 cup for later) and the cheese. Stir until cheese begins to melt and set aside.
4. In a separate bowl, add 2 eggs and the last cup of milk and whisk together.
5. Add the drained noodles, cheese, and egg mix to a crockpot with salt and pepper and stir.
6. Cook on low for 1 hour.

Now try not to eat every last bite of the deliciousness that is this mac and cheese :)

[recipe adapted from here]

Trader Joe’s Favorites

trader joes

I kinda love grocery shopping. Probably because I can buy things and not feel bad about it ;) What I love even more than grocery shopping is grocery shopping at Trader Joe’s. I try and buy as many staples as possible from Trader Joe’s because not only is it cheaper but TJ items have no preservatives, artificial flavors etc. Here are some of my favorites:

Real Mayonnaise: Mayo is one of those things that you know isn’t good for you but it’s required in a lot of recipes and also tastes great on sandwiches. You can feel a little better by getting this one that’s preservative free and tastes the same as any other mayo!

Coconut Oil: There are a million uses for this both in the pantry and in the bathroom cabinet!

Gnocchi: If you haven’t tried this yet, pick it up next time and you’re in for an easy delicious Italian dinner. I just heat up some butter with garlic and parmesan cheese for the sauce and it’s the best.

Thai Red Curry Sauce: Great for making chicken curry with rice and veggies.

Salsa Autentica: This is my favorite salsa ever.

Chocolate Covered Pretzels: Just yum.

Himalayan Pink Salt Crystals: A healthier alternative to sea salt. This is all I use now.

Mini Croissants: Frozen pastries that are delicious for breakfast (you just have to remember to take them out the night before ;))

Goat Milk Brie: I’ve found that all cheeses from TJs are not only delicious but way cheaper than at any grocery store. This one doesn’t disappoint.

Light Champagne Vinaigrette: All the dressings they carry are delicious but this one is one of my favs. It’s nice and light.

Basil Pesto: I always keep pesto in the pantry. It’s a great alternative to noodles and a jar of marinara when you want an easy pasta dish.

Frozen Edamame: Heat it up in the microwave for a few minutes, add salt and you have a delicious, healthy snack.

Not Pictured:

All the wine: so cheap and so good.

What are your favorite Trader Joe’s buys? I’m always looking for new things to try :)

Sunday Dinner: Simple Fresh Pasta Recipe

pasta recipe

One of my favorite easy recipes is fresh pasta with a light sauce. It’s a great dinner for Sunday nights when you aren’t necessarily up to making something elaborate after a long weekend!

I picked up some fresh pasta from the farmer’s market (you can find some in a health food store, don’t settle for dried pasta!) Cook it according to the instructions. Make the sauce in a separate pan by heating up some oil and adding diced garlic, cherry tomatoes cut in half and salt. Let that simmer for a bit on low-medium heat. I added some white wine (optional) and a lot of basil and oregano from the garden.

When the pasta is done and drained mix with the sauce and top with parmesan cheese. Pour a glass of wine and enjoy your Sunday night!

Fried Green Tomatoes Recipe

fried green tomatoes
As I mentioned in my post earlier this week, we made fried green tomatoes after I picked some up at the Farmer’s Market. They are one of my favorite things to order at a restaurant so I figured why not try them myself? Here’s what I did:
Ingredients:
– 2 green tomatoes
– 1 egg
– 1/2 cup buttermilk
– 1/2 cup flour
– 1/2 cup cornmeal
– oil
– salt

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1. Slice 2 green tomatoes into 1/3 inch slices.

IMG_63102. Set out 3 bowls. In the first one put 1/4 cup of flour. In the second put 1 egg and 1/2 cup of buttermilk. In the third combine 1/4 cup of flour, 1/2 cup cornmeal and a teaspoon of salt. (sorry the bowls are out of order in the picture above!)

IMG_63113. Dip each tomato slice in each bowl in order, first the flour, then the egg mixture and finally the cornmeal.

IMG_63134. Pour oil in a skillet and heat at medium-high.

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5. Drop each tomato in the oil and cook for 2 minutes on each side. Put on a plate lined with paper towels.

We whipped up a quick sauce made with mayo, hot sauce and relish :) Enjoy!

 

 

Stuffed Peppers Recipe

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Stuffed peppers make for a hearty meal with great leftovers! My grandma used to make stuffed peppers all the time and although I don’t have her exact recipe, this one is definitely reminiscent of it. It’s always extra special when a meal is not only delicious but has memories that go along with it!

Ingredients:
– 4 peppers (any color, just make sure they can stand up well on their own)
– 2 cups brown rice (I just use a box)
– 2 8 oz. cans of tomato sauce
– 1lb. ground beef
– Mozzarella cheese
– 1tbsp. worcestershire sauce
– 2 garlic cloves minced
– Italian seasoning

Instructions:
1. Cut off the tops of all the peppers and clean out the seeds and membranes
2. Preheat oven to 350 degress
3. Cook brown rice according to instructions to make 2 cups
4. Cook garlic for one minute in oil
5. Add beef in skillet over medium heat and cook until brown
6. Place peppers in a baking dish
7. In a large bowl mix together: beef, garlic, rice, worchestershire sauce, one can of tomato sauce, salt and pepper
8. Use the mixture to stuff each pepper evenly
9. Pour the remaining tomato sauce over each pepper and sprinkle with italian seasoning
10. Bake for 45 minutes
11. Add mozzarella cheese over the top and bake for another 15 minutes, until cheese begins to brown.
12. Enjoy!

stuffed pepper

Do you have any recipes connected to good memories?