Tag Archives: veggies

Summer Beet and Cucumber Salad

I saw an article this morning that said Facebook games are experiencing a big decline right now. I’d like to think that’s because we are a nation of such productive gardeners and farmers that we can’t bear the winter months without having something to hoe, and now that the real gardening season is underway, we much prefer to get out and work in the real dirt, tending to real ghost peppers and pattypan squash, sweeping our virtual FarmVille selves under the rug until the next frost. 

I’d also like to think that someday I’ll fit into those shiny silver pants I used to wear when I danced to Front 242 at the Vault so many years ago.

I fear that neither of these things are true.

Speaking of real vegetables, did I mention that I love BEETS?

I really, really love beets. I love them plain with butter and salt, I love them pickled, I bet I’d probably love them grilled, and I especially love them when they’re grown in my yard!

Remember these guys? Thanks to all for your great beet suggestions! The general consensus seems to be that beets are best when served in some kind of salad, and since I had to find a way to use both my handy dandy new food processor and this fresh dill…

(could this be THE fresh dille?)

I whipped together a lovely pink Summer Beet and Cucumber Salad!

I boiled the beets until fork-tender with an inch of stalk left on so as not to let all the nutrients escape…

Then, immersed them immediately in cold water so the skins peeled right off. Ees pretty, no?

Next step: I thinly sliced half a red onion and put it in cold water to soak while preparing the dressing.

For the dressing, I whisked together the following:

8 Tbsp olive oil

6 Tbsp rice wine vinegar

big handful freshly chopped dill

2 Tbsp agave nectar

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

3 Tbsp Dijon mustard

1 generous squirt lime juice

I then sliced one large cucumber (with a 2-second whirr! Beautiful!), quartered the tiny beets, and tossed them together in a large bowl with the dressing and the onion, drained.

Pretty in pink!

Lest you should think that I eat healthy all the time ( ;) ), I’d like to mention that we had a charity luncheon at my office, which featured this delectable little dessert:

In fact, it was so nice, I ate it twice! Someone who heard me say how much I enjoyed it brought me another one at my desk. On any other day, I would never consider accepting it, but today I’m subscribing to the Tao of Granny… 

Yup…you got it. I ate ‘em both, and I loved it.

So there. :lol:

__________________________________________

10 Comments

Filed under Home & Garden, Recipes & Food

Burger and Fries!

I have some catching up to do!

What gets my vote for best 3pm snack this week? 

These guys, who made a surprise appearance at my desk during the afternoon slump! They arrived courtesy of my friend who happens to be a registered dietitian, so I ate one happily, no questions asked, and packed up the other for the Hus.

CHOMP!

Did you ever just get bored with your ol’ standby breakfast, only to eat it and realize why it became your breakfast of choice in the first place?

Yesterday, my cup runneth over with So Delicious coconut milk (beverage) and Granbiotics granola, topped with cranberries and one date, for good measure…

…along with more Mother’s Milk tea. I think this stuff is really working! I thought all that galactagogue talk might be a bunch of hooey, but my supply is increasing nicely. I still don’t like the anise flavor, but it’s not bothering me that much anymore. Besides, I never really liked handling poop or having bags under my eyes from sleep deprivation before either, but I deal. It’s all part of parenting, right?

Breakfast was fun. Little F is getting so curious about Mommy’s food, and he intently watches as I raise and lower my spoon for each bite, not aware that he’s imitating my motions with his mouth. It’s super cute, and I love that he’s watching me eat something healthy (most of the time… ;)

I just love being a mommy. Especially his mommy.

Daddy wanted burgers and fries, so I decided to oblige him, ABCGP-style!

I had a bunch of beautiful parsnips, courtesy of my favorite grocery store Produce Man (my Dad!) so I cut them up and made some parsnip fries! A drizzle of olive oil on one side, macadamia nut oil on the other, salt and pepper.

I also sprinkled a few with some chipotle powder a friend made for us out of our garden jalapenos…

400º for about 25 minutes…

A few were a little thin, but the core was really fat and I didn’t have much choice. Maybe smaller parsnips are better?

His burger: moo-cow. Mine: Sunshine!

Fresh salsa, crumbled feta, and basil from the garden, with a swipe of avo-hummus underneath.

Bruschetta Sunshine Burger, maybe? Either way, deeee-lish.

It was time to thin out the beet patch, so I found myself with these beautiful babies…

Not sure what I’ll do with them yet, but this new addition to the family sure is giving me some ideas…

I can’t think of a better present right now! Many thanks to Grammie Garden Pea!

__________________________________

Do you eat the same thing for breakfast every day? Do you get bored? (I find that limiting my options makes it easier for me to make sure that A. I actually eat breakfast , and B. I make a healthy choice at 5am. Do you agree?)

What’s your favorite way to eat beets?

6 Comments

Filed under Home & Garden, Recipes & Food

Local, seasonal food hits the spot!

It’s been a rough week. The best medicine? Local, seasonal, freshly prepared food from Emma’s Food for Life in Selinsgrove!

You know the conversation…

“What do you want for dinner?”

“I don’t know…what do you want for dinner?”

“I don’t care. Whatever you want.”

and so on, and so on…

We were fully engaged in that back and forth last night when we drove by Emma’s and I remembered that I had seen Lemon Quinoa on their specials board outside. I figured it would feature peas and asparagus, because that is what’s in season here right now, and it did.

I just may turn into a pea with the way I’ve been eating lately, but I guess that’s what eating local, seasonal produce is all about, right? If peas are in season, you eat a lot of peas.

So Emma’s it was, and it did not disappoint.

She: Lemon Quinoa (a thick, warm, creamy quinoa in a lemony sauce that reminded me of risotto! Comfort food at its finest. It had lots of greens, peas and asparagus. Sadly, it promised to come with a side of cabbage and beet salad, which was nowhere to be found :( ) It did, however, come with a little green side salad. I chose the lemon tahini dressing (not my favorite, by far )  The husbo chose the cilantro lime dressing, so I stole that :twisted:

Accompanying my dinner is some organic Mother’s Milk tea from Traditional Medicinals…it tastes like strong anise, which I despise, but it came highly recommended and I need the help right now in strengthening my supply. It tasted just a little better in my new W mug (a gift from my thoughtful husband!)

I poached us each a piece of salmon for a little extra sumthin’, and it was pretty tasteless until we realized we could dip it in the dressing. Cilantro Lime Salmon, coming right up!

He: The hus chose the whole wheat fettucine with bacon, peas and asparagus. It was really good…I had a bite with bacon in it, and I wanted to eat the whole thing! I guess there’s just no denying the seductive qualities of bacon. The one bite was enough, though…I don’t plan on becoming a bacontarian.

BIG portion!

 

These dishes didn’t really lend themselves well to pretty pictures, but they were delicious! I inhaled mine. Just what we needed on a night when I was exhausted, still a little concerned about my health, and not wanting to settle for any kind of fast food. (Sadly, we were left with a mountain of styrofoam containers. I was surprised to see that from a restaurant like Emma’s. Surely they could find recycled cardboard…)

Our boy joined in the feast with his new favorite…avocado! I’ve given this to him a couple of times now, and he just devours it! I always seem to have just a little left over whenever I use one, so this will work out perfectly! This was the most perfect avocado I’ve ever cut into (like BUTTAH!) and he said, “Mmmmmm….” with each bite.

Mortared and pestled…

Next time, we combine the ‘cado with a nanner. 

Newsflash: I’ve decided to cave a little on my dairy weirdness and eat some yogurt. I need calories, protein and calcium right now more than ever, and you just can’t beat the nutritients in Greek yogurt, so I looked up my old friend Fage….

This sucker comes with a lot of honey! I amped it up with a little Granbiotics granola and some walnuts…

I had forgotten how good this stuff is…

I’d go so far as to call this the perfect bite!

I guess a little yogurt now and then won’t hurt anything. But no fruity-bottomed ones, and you won’t catch me with a glass of milk in this lifetime, either…

Now, off to get groceries and skedaddle home to my boys. Last time I was in the store, I heard Jive Talkin’! I hope there’s a fun playlist today…I love grocery shopping!

Have a great Sunday, all!

_____________________________________________________

What’s in season now where you live? Have you had your fill of it yet?

6 Comments

Filed under Product & Service Reviews, Recipes & Food, The Everyday

Garden Pea Puree!

The last day of my 3-day mini vacation and it’s going to RAIN? So not cool.

Oh well. I decided to savor every minute of my day off with my boy anyway. First, I savored this cup of Granbiotics vanilla almond granola with So Delicious coconut milk, a few cranberries and half a nanner. I think I may have started a new love affair with coconut milk. It’s SO good (swoon-worthy even), and I love that it’s vegan and high in B12.

Don’t worry almond milk, I still love you and I always will…

The other half of the nanner found it’s way into a much smaller tummy. I’ve SO been looking forward to sharing food!

I felt like carrot casserole (funny, you don’t look like a carrot casserole:D ) Unfortunately, the carrots weren’t quite ready…

But the PEAS were! Woohoo! Some wouldn’t be so excited, perhaps, but me? I’m stoked to make Garden Pea Puree!

I shelled these bad boys and steamed them until soft in my (broken) steamer. 

I then pureed them in my little puree machine, which I proceeded to break. Looks like I’ll be investing in a better food processor even sooner than I thought! :(  The last step was pushing them through my strainer to remove any pieces that didn’t puree. Once your baby is past stage one foods, this step really isn’t necessary anymore.

The little bit I had time to pick yielded 4 servings when mixed with just a little water, 3 of which I put into one of my KidCo. BPA-free baby food freezer tray for another day (I have the food mill, too, but we’re not quite there yet.) I left the puree a little thick so I could thin it out with breastmilk before serving each cube (purees freeze better without the milk…save that for later, when you’re getting ready to serve.)

This puree turned out a rad shade of green! Can you tell by this little face that it tasted pretty good, too? 

Next time, we make the BIG BATCH!

Since Mommy and Daddy have a slightly bigger appetite, and lots of fresh produce to use up, we ended up with a bit of a hodge-podge for dinner  (My favorite! I’m so laid back and unstructured like that, you know... ;) )

A little too yellow, perhaps, but super good with a super short ingredients list! Fresh corn, broccoli from the garden, Low & Slow white sweet potatoes, a yellow tomater, and a few tiny chicken tenderloins. (I ended up giving mine to the husbo…just wasn’t feeling the chix.) Oh yeah, and salt, pepper, garlic and olive oil. That’s it.

What color is your food?

A full day of healthy foods and baby snuggles. Rain or no rain, it doesn’t get much better than that.

_________________________________________________

Do you make or plan to make homemade baby food? What is your favorite recipe?

What is your favorite pea recipe? I need LOTS!

9 Comments

Filed under Home & Garden, Parenting & Family, Recipes & Food, The Everyday

I Heart Tomatoes

What do you do when there is a luncheon at work, and nobody wants the leftover salsa? Why, you take it, of course. And then you EAT IT!

But when you have no chips, you’ve gotta get crafty….

I’m really digging this Food for Life bread. It has sprouted grains, you know.

Oh yeah, I have some of that Yucatan Avo-hummus in the fridge… Who knew I’d find so many ways to use that stuff? It’s so huggable!

This was such a good snack that I had 2 and it turned into lunch!

Later, I was feeling a bit poached-salmony, and I thought that would be good topped with fresh salsa. Turns out I was right. As usual, I had lots of garden spinach to use up, along with more local strawberries. I threw them together with an orange (see my first attempt at orange supremes below), a little feta, some walnuts and my fork! I was very smiley while eating this… :D

I hope Finn is smiley, too. They say the flavors of your food influence the flavor of your breastmilk, and that a varied diet can influence your child’s palate throughout life. Neat, eh?

Oh, and a little sidenote: Why haven’t I been making my own salad dressing? Duh. This one was lemon olive oil, rice wine vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard and oregano. A few good whisks, and it was better than any store-bought bottle. Hello!?

What’s the use of talking about food if you’re not going to mention the best beverage on the planet

I mean that. Best. Drink. Ever. Period.

I want to work for Sweet Leaf. I wonder if they have a position, like, say…Tea Drinker?

Granny wisdom for today?

Yeah, I don’t know about that. I love shoes and expensive ingredients, and money sure can buy those!

My favorite Sweet Leaf Grannyism to date? Life is a Garden. Dig it.

Wait…where do you think you’re going? My salsa might be gone, but my tomato bender isn’t over quite yet. 

If I could actually be a tomato, this is the one I’d be. Isn’t it pretty? Forget the flowers…I want a bouquet of these!

Today we’re heading out to the annual Blues Fest at the Spyglass Ridge Winery!  This is one event that we really look forward to every year, I just hope it doesn’t rain too much. No wine for mama this time, but I’ll have a blast anyway, because this is the first year that WE are THREE!

Ta ta for now!

__________________________________

I also like to stuff a baked potato with salsa. What do you do with salsa when you find yourself chip-less?

6 Comments

Filed under Home & Garden, Parenting & Family, Product & Service Reviews, Recipes & Food, The Everyday