Hungry, bored or both? Try these recipes from Sophie's Kitchen!

 
 
Dear Duchesne Families,
 
We know this time is stressful for everyone. Being at home for all or most of the day can lead to boredom, especially in the kitchen. I wanted to pass along some fun, nutritious recipes we use in the Duchesne cafeteria, they are easy to make and we know the girls love them.
 
I’ve selected recipes that are relatively inexpensive to make, use ingredients that are easy to store, and produce enough food to feed a large family or freeze and save.
 
Sincerely,
Jacqui Caniglia
Food Program Manager

 

Shopping List

 
Pasta
This simple and wholesome food goes a long way and is almost always welcomed by the entire family. There are lots of option for GF as well. When your favorite red sauce becomes boring try something new. Simply toss your noodles with toasted breadcrumbs, olive oil, salt and pepper (add some canned or frozen peas or lima beans to boost the nutrition and comfort impact). Or try the simple turmeric pasta (recipe attached).

Rice
This is a cupboard staple that goes a long way. If you can, try to use brown rice. It retains more of its health benefits including fiber. When making rice consider doubling the amount that you cook. Leftover rice is great for a simple fried rice or I have a super-easy black bean burger that uses leftover rice (attached). Add some frozen veggies and beans to your rice and you have a satisfying and healthy meal that will keep you full.

Canned Beans
A simple way to make a salad, a dip or a soup. Beans offer lots of great health benefits and are a good source of protein. Consider making a simple chickpea curry (think canned chickpeas and canned tomatoes) recipe attached or a black bean soup. If you are tired of Campbell’s tomato soup add some cannellini beans and frozen greens. Boost the flavor and nutrition.
Dried beans are also wonderful to use. They take a little more time to cook so you will want to plan ahead. Lentils however are a quick-cooking bean and super yummy. There is a simple recipe attached. Those don’t need to be pre-cooked and are versatile (make a soup, tacos/burritos, vegetarian meat loaf and more). As with these other items consider doubling your recipes. That way you will have leftovers for lunch or can add a few extra spices and turn it into a new dinner. Of course, you could freeze the second batch for a simple dinner the following week.

Grains
Rice and pasta are included in this. But there are so many more options. You might find that some of these alternative grains are on the shelf at the store as people might not know how to use them. Consider millet, barley, quinoa and of course oats. Many of these grains cook quickly and can be as versatile as rice. You can make salads, soups or breakfast cereals with these. Check out this link to Bob’s Red Mill, they have recipes and basic cooking techniques for a variety of grains https://www.bobsredmill.com/
And while we are mentioning breakfast…. Overnight oats are satisfying and so simple. You’ll find a recipe attached. I am also attaching a simple bread that uses whole wheat, oats and sunflower seeds. A pretty satisfying thing to have sitting on the counter.

Greens
It is important to continue to eat your leafy greens. If you are having trouble keeping fresh greens in your house, then consider frozen. You can easily incorporate frozen greens into lots of meals to boost the nutrition. Check out the simple recipe that uses lentils, simple veggies and frozen greens. Add them to scrambled eggs, rice, pasta, add to soup and stew. If you can… we highly recommend a salad a day. Keep it fresh and simple with just some sort of salad green and try with just lemon juice or vinegar… or add a little olive oil, salt and pepper and toss. You can add other favorites as you have them available.

Fruit
Fruits are important as well. Again, it might be difficult to keep fresh fruit on hand. Frozen fruit is a great option. Often, they are harvested at peak and retain most nutritional benefits. Think smoothies. Or add some berries to your oats or other breakfast cereal. And really a mix of lightly frozen fruit is kind of tasty as dessert. There are lots of canned fruits as well as applesauce. You might try to find something that doesn’t have added sugar (look for items packed in water or juice).

PB&J
Yes, a peanut butter and jelly sandwich has some great benefits and staying power (try sun butter if you can’t have nuts). Consider a whole grain bread, peanut butter (or sun butter) that doesn’t have sugar or fats added and a jam or jelly made without additional sugar. These are great to make ahead and freeze. Grab one to take for a hearty snack or simple lunch or breakfast on the go. Sooo satisfying!

These are a few things to start with.

On a personal note consider making sitting with your loved ones at the dinner table (or breakfast or lunch) a priority and leave the electronics out of the picture. Take time to enjoy a meal and the company of those you love. It will do your stomach, heart and mind a lot of good.
Encourage someone in your family who doesn’t usually cook to help with dinner preparation. It could be setting the table, warming something up or making a salad. Of course, take turns with dishes to help lighten the load.
 
 
 
JUMP TO RECIPE:
 

Potato Gnocchi

Serves 4
(adapted from Paul Bertolli, Cooking by Hand)
 
Ingredients

3 russet potatoes (1 ½ pounds) or Idaho potatoes or Yukon gold (as sizes vary, weigh for accuracy)
1 egg, lightly whisked
¼ cup half and half (or milk or alternative milk.. such as unsweetened soy milk)
1 tsp salt
Pinch nutmeg
2 cups all-purpose flour
 
Directions
 
Red tomato sauce, olive oil, grated parmesan, romano or asiago or Italian cheese of choice.
 
Place the whole potatoes in a large pot. Cover with cold water by a couple inches. Turn up the heat and simmer until they are tender when you poke with a knife or fork (30-40 minutes). Once done drain off the water and let the potatoes sit in the pot to cool down (at least 15 minutes).
 
Once they are cool enough to handle peel the potatoes by hand or with a small paring knife.
If you have a potato ricer, run them through this into a large bowl. If not, mash the potatoes with a fork or potato masher to remove lumps.  Add the egg, milk, salt and nutmeg to the potatoes. Turn with a spatula to combine.
 
Measure your flour into a large bowl. Create a well in the center of the bowl. Add the potato mixture to the flour. Use a spatula to pull the flour around and cut into the potato mixture. Spin the bowl and continue to fold the mixture together until you have a large, soft ball of dough.
 
Place a large pot of water on the stove to bring to a boil while you finish your dough.
 
On a clean surface (countertop or table) lightly dust the surface with flour. Place your gnocchi dough on the surface. Cut it into 4 pieces. Take each piece and gently roll into a log (add a little flour if it is sticking a lot). Once rolled to about 12-18 inches and ¾ inches thick, set aside. Roll all 4 pieces of dough into logs. Cut the logs into ½ inch pieces with a pastry scraper or knife. These are your little potato dumplings.
 
Heat your oven to 375.
 
Once your water has come to a rolling boil, gently place one cut up log at a time into the water. Be careful as you are sure to have the water splash back a bit. Once all the pieces are in the water, stir gently with a spoon to be sure they aren’t sticking to the bottom. Once the gnocchi float to the surface, use a slotted spoon to scoop them out into a bowl (so you leave the boiling water on the stove). Toss with a little tomato sauce or olive oil. Continue to cook the gnocchi in batches and adding to the finished bowl. The gnocchi can be eaten like this with your sauce of choice. But if you want to make it super yummy then follow along.
 
In a shallow, glass or ceramic bowl add some olive oil and a little tomato sauce. Add half the gnocchi. Grind a little black pepper over the gnocchi, then grate some cheese over. Add a bit more tomato sauce, the rest of the gnocchi, some more sauce, black pepper and grated cheese on top. You don’t want the gnocchi to be completely covered by tomato sauce. That way when you bake it you will have some pillowy, soft pockets of pasta dumplings and you will have some lightly browned with a little crustiness.
 
Bake for 15-20 minutes until you have lightly, golden crust in spots.
Serve warm with a salad or steamed veggies.
 
 
Potato Gnocci
 

Hummus

 
Let's end the week with a treat! This hummus recipe is a favorite in the Duchesne cafeteria. It's a great, healthier dip for veggies and chips and also tastes great as a sandwich spread. 
 
 
Ingredients 
 
2    cans garbanzo beans (drained but reserve 1 cup liquid)
1    cup tahini
4T  lemon juice
2    cloves garlic
1½ tsp salt
 
Directions
 
Blend all in a food processor. If too thick add some of the reserved bean liquid.
Taste and add salt, lemon juice or liquid as needed.
Alternatively, if you don’t have a food processor you could use a potato masher and smash the beans to your best ability. Add the garlic, salt and lemon juice. Add ½ cup of liquid (or water). Lastly add in the tahini and turn with a spatula to combine. Add a little more liquid if needed. Chunky version!
Makes approximately 3 cups
 
Hummus from Sophie's Kitchen
 

All-Purpose Spice Muffins

(makes about 12 small muffins)
 
Let’s start the day with breakfast! These muffins are ready for the girls each morning in Sophie’s Kitchen. They’re easy to make, cook quickly, and are a warm way to start classes from home.
 
Dry Ingredients
  • 1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg, ginger (optional)
  • ¼ tsp cloves (optional)

    Wet Ingredients

  • ¾ cup milk (or alternative milk of choice)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup frozen berries, nuts, chocolate chips, apple or pear chunks (all optional)
Directions
 
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees

Prep your muffin pan. Spray or line to keep from sticking.
 
Combine your dry ingredients in a large bowl. Whisk lightly to remove lumps and combine.

Combine your wet ingredients. Use a whisk or a fork to combine (it is best to start with the egg and whisk and add the other liquids to make a homogeneous mixture)
 
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients. Add the wet ingredients to that. Use a spatula to gently combine the two.
 
Folding over and scraping the bottom of the bowl. It is important to NOT overmix. A few, little lumps in the batter is much better than an overworked, smooth batter.
Gently fold in your add-in ingredients.
 
Use a measuring cup to put the batter in the muffin tin. You want the tin to be about ¾ full.

Lightly sprinkle some cinnamon sugar on top if you’d like.
 
Bake for 13-18 minutes. You’ll need to check as all ovens bake differently. The top will get golden, there will be a light bounce back if touched. Or the best way to know is sticking a toothpick in the middle. If it comes out clean it is done.
 
Let cool for 10 minutes before removing from the pan.
 
 
Sophie's Kitchen Muffin Recipe
 

Easter Side Dishes

Here are some simple recipes to help bring your Easter meal together.
There is a simple scone made with olive oil and a fork to scalloped potatoes. As always, you can email Sophie’s Kitchen with any questions.
 
Scalloped Potatoes

Scalloped (or Au Gratin) Potatoes

Serves 6
 
Ingredients:
  • 3 pounds russet or Idaho or Yukon gold potatoes. Scrubbed clean and thinly sliced.
  • 1 small yellow onion, petite diced
  • 1 cup shredded, sharp cheddar cheese (this is optional)
  • 1 ½ tsp dried thyme (or another herb of choice)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 1/2 cups whole milk
 
Directions:
 
Heat your oven to 400°
 
Grease well an 8” round casserole or pyrex dish or an 8” square pan.
 
Shred your cheese if using and set aside.
 
Lightly warm your milk and set aside.
 
Have your thyme, salt and pepper out and ready to go.
 
Have a bowl of cold water ready. Slice the potatoes very thinly. Set in the bowl of water as you go to keep them from browning.
 
Dice your onion or shallot and set aside.
 
You are ready to assemble! Clean your surface and hands. Drain your potatoes and lightly blot with a towel.
 
In your greased pan, line the potatoes around the entire surface of the dish.
 
They should partially overlap with each other. Sprinkle the surface with a large pinch of salt and pepper.
 
Then sprinkle on some of the thyme, 1/3 of the onions and 1/3 of the cheese.
 
Continue to layer this way until you’ve used all of the potatoes.
 
Slowly pour the milk over the potatoes. The milk should just barely come up to the top of the potatoes.
 
Lightly sprinkle with the last of the cheese.
 
Cover with a lid or foil. Bake for approximately 1hour, 15 minutes.
 
They should absorb the milk, lightly brown around the edges and when you pierce the potatoes with a fork it
should go through. When you’ve achieved this the potatoes are done. Let them sit for 15 minutes to solidify and serve.
 
Scones

Super Simple Scones

Makes 8
 
Ingredients:
 
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup milk (I used unsweetened soy but you could use what you have… almond, oat, 2%).
  • Zest&Juice of 1 lemon (or lime or orange)
  • 1 cup berries of choice (blackberry, raspberry, blueberries, strawberries (these need to be sliced up)
  • Fresh or frozen will work.
Directions:
 
Heat your oven to 400°
 
Get a pan ready. Either use parchment or lightly grease a half sheet pan.
 
In a bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and zest. (Dry ingredients)
 
In a cup combine the milk of choice and lemon juice. (Wet ingredients)
 
Have your berries set aside in a bowl.
 
Using a fork, pour the olive oil into the bowl of dry ingredients. Use a fork to work the olive oil into the flour. This will not be smooth looking. It will have lumps of oil mixed into the flour. Work for about a minute to get the olive oil worked into a crumbly mix.
 
Add the wet ingredients all at once to this mixture. Use the fork to fold these together. It will continue to be a clumpy mixture. You don’t want to overmix this.
 
Add the berries and lightly fold in. Giving just a turn or two.
 
Use a spatula to dump this out onto your counter. (Or if you are using parchment paper, directly onto your pan)
 
Gently shape into a large, round shape.
It should be about the diameter of your hand with fingers spread apart.
 
Using a knife or scraper, score into 8 pieces. Then cut. Separate the scones a bit on the pan.
 
Use a brush to lightly coat the top of the scone with a little extra olive oil (If you don’t have a brush, use your hands)
 
Sprinkle lightly with granulated sugar.
 
Bake in the oven for approximately 15 minutes. (Mine took 16 minutes). They should puff up and have a light golden color.
 
Remove from the oven and let cool before eating.

Vinaigrettes

Vinaigrette

Enough for 2 large garden salads
 
Basic Vinaigrette
(3 to 1 Ratio)
 
Ingredients:
  • 3T Olive Oil
  • 1T Red Wine Vinegar
  • ½ tsp mustard (Dijon or regular)
  • 1 clove garlic (finely minced)
  • Pinch salt and pepper
  • Herbs of your choice
Directions:
 
The basis of a vinaigrette is 3 parts oil to one-part acid. With that simple bit of knowledge, you can start with something very basic and build it in many ways. Combine all of these ingredients in a small bowl or glass jar and whisk together well with a whisk or simply a fork. Taste and season as you like (more vinegar, more tart.. saltier, more salt… add a little honey for sweetness, add the herbs of your choice.
Think basil and oregano, thyme or rosemary. See what you have in your cupboard.

Traditional French Vinaigrette

This is a little different than the 3 to 1 ratio but a variation of it).1 shallot (finely minced) or yellow onion (but only a Tablespoon or so
 
Ingredients:
  • 1 clove garlic (finely minced)
  • 2T Dijon mustard
  • 1T white wine vinegar
  • 4T Olive Oil
  • Pinch salt and pepper
Directions:
 
Combine all of these in a small bowl or glass jar. Whisk vigorously to combine.
 
Taste and adjust flavors. Adding a little fresh lemon juice to this is really nice.
 
A couple of notes:
 
If you use store-bought salad dressing, you are in for a treat. This will take your salad to a new level of freshness and flavor.
 
If you don’t have something, don’t worry. Out of garlic? Use a ¼ tsp garlic powder.
 
NO Dijon mustard? Use traditional mustard. Substitute apple cider vinegar for the white wine.
 
Use some balsamic vinegar instead of red wine vinegar.
 
Don’t be afraid to change things up, add some different spices or a little sweetness. Just add a little at a time and taste to make sure the flavor is where you want it.
 
If using the same day leave out. If saving put in the fridge. The olive oil will solidify and need to a little time to come to room temperature before you serve. Or just whisk up again.
 
Remember to add the dressing JUST before serving and toss with a large spoon or tongs.

Roasted carrots

Roasted Carrots

serves 4
 
Ingredients:
  • 2 pounds Carrots (cleaned and cut) (orange, purple, yellow or even baby carrots)
  • 3T Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper
  • ¼ cup Hazelnuts (or almonds or pistachios or walnuts or NONE)
Directions: 
 
Heat your oven to 425°
 
Line a pan with parchment paper or lightly coat it with olive oil.
 
Carrots – the most important thing about these is to cut them all in a similar size. If you have some cute, slender carrots they might not need to be sliced. If they are chunky, then cut them in half lengthwise and then cut each piece into half again. If you have baby carrots, these don’t need to be cut. Use them as is.
 
Again, it is important that they are all cut in the same way so that they cook at the same time.
 
Put your carrots in a bowl and pour the olive oil over them. Season with salt and pepper. Turn with your hands or a spatula to coat. Pour them onto your prepared pan. Place in the oven and plan to roast for 30-45 minutes.
 
You’ll want to check them and give them a turn every 15 minutes. You can test the doneness by piercing them with a fork. You want them to be just barely soft and browning around the edges.
 
While your carrots are roasting, chop your nuts and place on a small pan or even a piece of foil. Toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes. Until they are lightly browned. This brings out the flavor! Set aside on the counter.
 
When the carrots are done remove from the oven. Let cool for 5-8 minutes. Give them another sprinkle of salt and pepper, add some fresh herbs if you’d like. Throw in your toasted, chopped nuts and give one last little bit of olive oil. Toss and place on a plate or serving bowl.
 
 

Snack Bar Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips

1 Loaf
 
Snack Bar Banana Bread with chocolate chips - loaf
 
Ingredients:

4 ripe bananas
1/3cup butter(melted) OR Vegetable Oil OR olive oil OR coconut oil
3/4cup brown sugar (You can use less if you’d like to cut back)
1 egg
1tsp vanilla
1tsp baking soda
½ tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
1 ½ cup AP Flour (or Gluten Free flour Blend)
½ cup Chocolate Chips (optional)
 
Directions:
 
Preheat your oven to 350°
Prep a loaf pan (either spray with a non-stick spray or line with parchment paper).
 
Put the bananas in a large bowl and mash with a potato masher or a fork.
Mash until no large chunks remain.
 
Add the sugar and combine. Add the butter (or oil of choice) and mix.
Add the egg and vanilla and mix it all together to a cohesive batter.
 
In the same bowl, add the dry ingredients (bs, bp, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, Flour)
 
Use a spatula or a big spoon to fold this all together so that there are no visible streaks of flour.
 
You don’t want to overmix it. Just until it comes together. Then sprinkle the chocolate chips and give it one last turn.
 
Pour into your prepared loaf pan. Even it out with a spatula or back of a spoon.
Put into your hot oven and set a timer for 1 hour. (it took 1 hour, 10 minutes in my oven.

Check for doneness with a toothpick. Inserted in the loaf it should come out clean (other than maybe some melted chocolate). Or if it is lightly touched in the middle it should have a slight bounce back.
 
If done, remove from the oven and let cool 15 minutes. Then turn out of the pan.
This will keep well for a few days on your counter. If you want to make a couple of loaves, they can be frozen for up to 3 months.
 

Overnight Oats

1 serving

Easy overnight eats - dressed up and ready to eat!

Ingredients:

As a guide use 1 part oats to 2 parts liquid

½ cup rolled oats

1 cup water, milk or alternative milk


Add-ins:

1 tsp honey, maple syrup, agave nectar

½ tsp cinnamon

1 Tb flaxseed meal

1 Tb chia seeds

1 Tb sunflower seeds

1 Tb pumpkin seeds

1Tb chocolate chips

2Tb dried berries

¼ cup frozen berries


Directions:

Place your oats and mix-ins in a jar or bowl, add liquid and stir.  Leave in the fridge covered until morning. Enjoy cold or you can warm.  If you get crazy with your mix-ins you might need to add a little extra liquid. Use your best judgment.


 

Matzo Ball Soup

Serves 4-6
 
Matzo meal can be difficult to find, especially with Passover being over. You might give your store a call to see if they carry it. I found it at Baker’s and Whole Foods). There are alternative dumpling options if you can’t find matzo meal.
 
Vivian Caniglia A17 helps make Matzo Ball Soup
Vivian Caniglia A17 making Matzo Ball Soup
 
 
Matzo Balls
yields approx. 16, make this first
 
Ingredients:
4 eggs
1tsp salt
Pinch black pepper
¼ cup olive oil
½ cup carbonated water (not flavored)
1 cup Matzo meal
In a large bowl add your eggs, salt, pepper, and oil. Whisk together.
Add the matzo meal and seltzer water. Stir to combine. Then tuck this away in your fridge while you get your soup going.
 
Veggie Soup:
 
Ingredients:
2 Tbl olive oil
2 md carrots, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 md sweet potatoes, chopped
3 md parsnips, chopped
1 pc ginger (about 1 “ in size), peeled and minced (if you don’t have any ginger then leave it out)
4 cloves garlic, minced
10 cups vegetable broth (or chicken broth) or water if you don’t have broth
3 bay leaves
Fresh thyme (a few sprigs) Alternatively 1 ½ Tb dried thyme
1Tb garlic powder
2tsp onion powder
1tsp dried dill
1 tsp dried parsley
 
Directions:
Heat your oil in a large pot. Add the veggies (carrots through garlic) and cook for 2-3 minutes. Until they begin to soften and brown a little. Add the broth (or water) and the herbs and spices. Bring the pot just to a boil and then drop the heat to a simmer. Let it simmer for 45 minutes checking occasionally.

The vegetables should be tender. If they aren’t quite done let it cook until they are just soft to the bite.
Taste your broth to see if it is where you want it to be. Maybe it needs more garlic or dill or thyme, salt or pepper. Add what you need to get your broth to the flavor that you would like. Turn down to the lowest setting and let it sit while you get to the matzo balls.
 
NOTE: if you want a more simple version. Warm your water or broth with your dried spices (double the amount) and let simmer for 20 minutes. Taste and add what you need to liven up the broth. Then add a bag of frozen, mixed vegetables. Let it simmer gently for another 10 minutes… then continue.
 
Put another pot (medium-large) on the stove filled with water and bring this to a boil.

Remove the matzo ball mix from the fridge. Using a large spoon scoop the matzo into the spoon and use another spoon or your hands to shape into a ball. Place on a plate or lined pan. Continue to do this with the rest of the matzo meal until all batter is used. By this time your water should be boiling. Gently add the matzo balls to the water and turn the water down to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for approximately 20 minutes. The matzos will increase in size. When done gently remove them from the pot.

Now let’s bring this all together. In a bowl place 2-3 matzo balls. Ladle your soup over the matzo balls until full.
If you have some fresh parsley it is a nice addition on top (but not necessary).
 
Enjoy! This is a simple pleasure sort of dinner. Eat as is. Add chicken to it if you have some extra in your fridge.
Have it with some additional crackers or a grilled cheese (soup and grilled cheese!). It is soul-satisfying. It is lovely to sit with your face over the top of the steaming bowl and let your COVID anxieties melt away for a bit.
Alternatively, if you have trouble finding Matzo meal, try some simple dumplings with this. The recipe is below. For this, you don’t need the matzo meal. You will cook these directly in the pot with the veggies, once the veggies are done. You will need to increase your amount of broth by 2 cups.
 
Simple dumplings (alternative)
 
Ingredients:
1 cup AP Flour
1 tsp baking powder
Salt and pepper
2T olive oil
½ cup milk (whole, 2%, alternative unsweetened milk)
In a bowl combine the flour, bp, salt and pepper. Add the olive oil and mix with a fork to a clumpy mixture.
Add the milk and bring to a cohesive mass. Scoop medium-large spoonful of this into your simmering soup (only once the vegetables are finished cooking). Keep the heat to low-medium, simmering. Cover and cook until the dumplings are done 10-15 minutes. Once they are done it is ready to serve. These dumplings will plump up and absorb quite a bit of liquid. Gently scoop out the dumplings into bowls and add the broth and vegetables and enjoy.
Gluten-Free Dairy Free Dumplings
1 cup Gluten-free flour blend
2T olive oil
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp dry dill or thyme (optional)
4T alternative milk (unsweetened) maybe a splash more.
 
Directions:
Place your GF flour in a bowl. Add the salt, pepper, baking powder and spice. Add the olive oil and use a fork to make a crumbly mixture. Drizzle in your milk and continue to mix with a fork until the dough comes together. If it is a little dry add a little extra milk. Let this sit for 10 minutes. The use a spoon to scoop and make your dumplings. Once your soup is ready (the vegetables are desired tenderness) add the dumplings to the soup. Keep at a low simmer, cover and let cook for 10-15 minutes until they are done.
 

Popcorn

2-4 servings
 
It’s not grocery day and you are out of microwave popcorn. How will you finish the Netflix series that you save for late in the evening when your need a break? Popcorn is easy, fast and satisfying to make on your stovetop. You can avoid all the chemical additives too! The key to this is to not heat your oil too much to prevent it from burning.
And you only need a few ingredients that you likely have.
 
Delicious and easy stove top popcorn
 
Ingredients:
2 Tbl olive oil
½ cup popcorn kernels
½ tsp salt plus more to taste
 
Directions:
Turn your burner to a medium heat, place your pan with olive oil, kernels and salt on the stove. Cover with a lid
stay by the burner. You will hear the kernels slowly start to pop. Then the popping will increase. I like to hold the pan with an oven mitt and move the pot around on the stove a bit (I have a gas range). Let continue to cook until the popping slows to just a pop a second or so. Turn off the heat and let the pot sit covered for another minute. When you do remove the lid be careful to keep it away from your face, so you don’t get hit by a random kernel or steam). Dump your popcorn into a big bowl. Sprinkle with desired salt and enjoy.

This is the time to specialize your popcorn, too. If you’d like it buttered, melt a Tbl or 2 of butter and drizzle over the popcorn and turn with a spatula to coat. Add some other herbs or maybe a little brown sugar.
Add black pepper or some grated cheese.
 
Turn on Netflix. Grab a napkin and enjoy.
 

 

Slaw

Cabbage
 
Closeup of delicious, classic cabbage slaw
 
Ingredients:
1/2 head red or green cabbage
1 md carrot, shredded
3 green onions thin sliced OR a shallot thinly sliced OR half a small yellow or red onion, thinly sliced
1 Lime , juiced
1 tsp apple cider vinegar (or rice vinegar or white vinegar or red wine vinegar.. you get the point)
1 tsp honey or maple syrup or agave nectar
Salt, pepper, red pepper flakes (if desired).
 
Directions:
This is a simple slaw that comes together in 5 minutes. It adds a boost of flavor, color and nutrition to whatever you are eating. You can customize it to your particular tastes. It will last 5 days easily in your refrigerator.
You will want to the chiffonade cut the cabbage (this means to finely slice …. Really fine… as thin as you can get it). Then slice those in half so it isn’t more than 1 ½ inches long.

Shred the carrot into that. Cut up your onions and add. Turn with a fork or tongs.
Squeeze the juice of a lime into the mix. Or if you have a lemon, you can use that (you might need a little less juice, start with ½ the lemon). Add a teaspoon of the vinegar that you have.
Give it a pinch of salt and pepper and add some red pepper flakes if you like a little kick. Then turn it all again with a fork or tongs.
 
Let it sit for 10-15 minutes. Then give it a taste. Add more of what you think it needs. More lime juice for zing, more salt, a little olive or sesame oil if you want a richer flavor, more red pepper or even a little cayenne if you like.
 
That is all there is to it. Now put it on anything and everything! Except maybe your cheerios.
It is super tasty on a curry or just some steamed veggies and rice. Throw it on your next bbq sandwich or burger. Try it on your salad.
 

 

Peanut Sauce

(this is a base recipe, you can add and substitute as needed)
 
a creamy, delicious and easy-to-whip-up peanut sauce.
 
This is a tasty sauce to have on hand. You most likely have the items to make this in your cupboard. You can serve this sauce over noodles with fresh or steamed veggies. Have it over rice or tofu smear it on your burger or kabobs. Roast a potato, top with roasted broccoli and peanut sauce, or on a garden salad. The possibilities are endless. I like to serve it with soba noodles, lightly steamed veggies, and tofu.
 
Make a double batch on Sunday and use it all week long!
 
Ingredients
½ cup peanut butter (crunchy or creamy) (Use an alternative nut butter or sun butter or even tahini)
2 Tbl soy sauce
1-2 Tbl maple syrup, honey or agave nectar
1 Tbl rice vinegar
1 tsp sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lime, juiced
Splash sriracha sauce (or other hot sauce of choice)
1 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
½ cup or so water to dilute as needed
 
Directions
If you are missing something in the ingredients either skip or use a similar substitute. Nothing is wrong as long as you are happy with the end result.
 
Start with your peanut butter and a whisk (or fork) in a bowl. Add the soy sauce and mix….The peanut butter will want to seize up a bit, just keep mixing. Add the rest of your ingredients including the juice of 1 lime. Depending on how thick you want it to drizzle in some water to thin.

Thick if you are using over rice or tofu or smearing on something. Thin for a sauce or dressing.
Give it a taste and see if it needs anything. Adjust to your taste. Store in the fridge for a week and smear or pour it over anything and everything.
 

 

Omelette

Simple, one serving
 
a single serve omlette you can enjoy for breakfast, dinner, or whenever!
 
Ingredients
2 eggs
2T water
Pinch salt and pepper
 
Directions
Whisk together the ingredients (or use a fork)
Heat a shallow skillet on the stove that has been sprayed or brushed to coat with olive oil.
Once the oil is shimmering add the egg mixture. Let sit for 20 seconds. Then begin to rotate the pan and push the cooked egg back and let the runny mixture fill in. Continue to do this until you have a flat, pancake-like egg and most of the liquid had solidified. Gently put your spatula under the omelette and give it a quick flip. Turn off the heat.

If you would like to add cheese or a filling this would be the time. ( Any filling would need to be fully cooked). Just top half of the omelette and flip the other side onto it. Put a lid on top and let sit for a minute to finish melting/bringing everything to the same temperature.

If not filling, let sit for 30 seconds and give the half-flip to get that cute omelette appearance.
These can be prepared quickly and personalized for different members of your family. For the omelette pictured, I added salsa and shredded cheddar cheese. You could saute some veggies or greens or add some fresh herbs or just a bit of shredded cheese.
 

 

Simple, Toasted Muesli

(similar to granola but without the added fat and just a little sweetness)
 
a healthy alternative to granola that won't compromise on taste!
 
 
Ingredients
4 cups rolled oats
1 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
1 cup chopped nuts of choice
3 Tbl maple syrup or honey or agave syrup
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg or ginger or cardamom (little extra spice) optional
1 cup of dried fruit. (raisins, cranberries, blueberries)
YES, you could add chocolate chips if you’d like
 
Directions
Preheat your oven to 350°
 
Measure your oats and pour out onto a sheet pan.

Measure your nuts, chop a bit and place on another pan.

Measure your coconut and set aside.
 
Place the oats and nuts in the oven to toast. The nuts will take 5-7 minutes. The oats will take a total of 10 minutes. At 7 minutes, take the oats out of the oven and sprinkle the coconut on top. Return to the oven to finish toasting (for approximately 3 minutes) until the coconut is lightly golden. (NOTE: shredded coconut will burn quickly. Don’t step away from the oven and be sure to check at 3 minutes, this might need an additional minute). Remove all from the oven to cool slightly. Then pour all into a large bowl.
 
In a small pan or glass dish heat your liquid sweetener with your vanilla briefly (20 seconds in the microwave).
Measure your cinnamon and sprinkle over the oats. If adding ginger or nutmeg add this as well. Also add your dried fruit.

Pour your warm sweetener over the bowl of toasted oats and turn with a spatula to coat. Turn a few times to make sure it is thoroughly mixed.

Pour the entire mixture back onto your pan and let sit out to cool and dry out (10-15 minutes).

Once it is thoroughly cooled place in a resealable container. If you have a glass jar that is the best for storing. But anything will work.
 
This is a great breakfast or snack during the day. Just put in a bowl with your choice of milk or yogurt and enjoy. You can add some additional fresh fruit if you like. Yes, you can add chocolate chips!!
This will last for 1-2 weeks in a container. But it will probably get eaten before that.
 

 

Cocoa Sugar Cookies

for alternative options see notes below
 
You'll be obsessed with these easy-to-make, sugar cookies with a twist!
 
Ingredients
4 ounces soft butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1T cream (or half and half, or milk, whatever you have in the fridge)
½ tsp vanilla
1 ½ cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup cocoa powder (sift)
1tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
 
Directions
Heat the oven to 325 degrees
 
Combine your ingredients together (combine egg, cream, and vanilla), combine dry ingredients in a bowl together … be sure to sift the cocoa powder, flour, baking powder, and salt). In a large bowl, cream the butter and sugar well using a fork or spatula (3-4 minutes).
 
Add your liquid ingredients (egg, cream, vanilla). Continue to cream with a fork for 3-5 minutes, until everything is incorporated.
 
Add half of the dry ingredients to the bowl. Mix to incorporate. Add the second half of the ingredients.
Mix this just until it comes together and you don’t see any streaks of flour.
 
Scoop with a tablespoon or ice cream scoop onto a lined or sprayed pan about an inch apart.

Bake for 10-14 minutes. They should be lightly baked as they are best soft … and get hard pretty quick if overbaked. Better to slightly under bake than to overbake!! It took 14 minutes in my home oven.
You can also scoop all of the dough and freeze the dough balls. You can bake them directly from frozen. It will take a few minutes longer.
 
Notes for alternatives:
Instead of butter use soft coconut oil, instead of cream use any alternative milk (I’ve tried rice, oat, soy all with success) and substitute a gluten-free alternative flour blend for the ap flour).
Baking times may vary a bit. Remember these are best on the soft side!
 
 

Cornbread Muffins

about 10-12 small muffins
 
best-ever breakfast cornbread muffins
 
Ingredients:
1 cup cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour (or gf flour blend)
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2Tbl granulated sugar (optional)
2/3 cup buttermilk (or soured alternative milk… see notes)
2/3 cup olive oil (or vegetable oil that you have on hand)
 
Directions:
 
Preheat oven to 425°

Lightly grease your muffin pan and set aside.
 
Combine the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. Whisk lightly to remove lumps and combine.
 
Combine the eggs, sugar, buttermilk and oil in another bowl.
 
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix with a spatula until combined.
 
Bake in a pan, small muffins or large muffins for 10-20 minutes depending on size.
They should be golden brown and have a little bounce when pressed. You can also test with a toothpick to see that it comes out clean.
 
**Notes**
If you don’t have buttermilk or need to use a milk alternative.. no problem.
Measure your milk (2%, whole, alternative, whichever (but not sweetened) Add 1 tsp lemon juice or apple cider vinegar or white vinegar) to the milk and let sit to get curdled while you assemble your other ingredients.
You can add a special savory touch to this by adding fresh rosemary or thyme (say 1T fresh or 1 tsp dried) You would add this to your dry ingredients.
 
You can add sweetness to this by adding blueberries. After you’ve combined all ingredients throw in a cup of fresh or frozen blueberries. Lightly fold in and bake.
 
 

 

Simple Steamed Veggie and Noodle Bowl

No recipe recipe
Serves 4-6
 
This dreamy steamed veggie bowl is so easy to prepare, it will quickly become your new go-to
 
Ingredients:
1 bunch Greens such as kale, collards, bok choy, cabbage, spinach
4 Carrots, thin sliced
1 pepper (any color) thin sliced
1 head broccoli (chopped into bite-size pieces)
½ bag frozen beans such as edamame or lima (or 1 can of beans of choice, drained)
1 pkg tempeh (or tofu) or other protein of choice
2- 8oz packages rice noodles (or noodle of choice, or rice)
1 jar favorite inspired sauce (peanut, thai spice, sweet and sour, etc)
Soy sauce, sesame oil, olive oil, lime juice, lemon juice (as desired)
 
Directions:
Slice/ prep all of your veggies.
 
Lightly steam your veggies (5-7 minutes) each. They should retain their bright color and have a slight bite to them (not crisp, but not mushy). Set aside in separate bowls or on one large platter in a nice array.
Drop the frozen beans into boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes.
 
Cook your protein as you like (roast, pan-fry, use up some leftovers).
Cook your noodles according to the package.
 
If you have some peanuts or seeds, chop some up for garnish.
If you have some fresh parsley or cilantro chop up for garnish.
 
Set everything out and let everyone assemble their own bowl. Use a favorite store-bought sauce to top, the peanut sauce that was featured last week, soy sauce with a little sesame oil, lime juice, and olive oil, maybe add a dash of hot sauce.
 
I love serving this at room temperature. But it is great hot, room-temp or cold.
 
 

 

Simple Bean Chili

serves 4-6
 
Super simple, but extra delicious!
 
Ingredients:
3T olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 peppers (green, yellow, red) chopped
1 jalapeno (or other hot pepper) petite chopped (optional)
4 cloves garlic, minced
Other veggies you may have such as zucchini, yellow squash, carrots, mushrooms, cauliflower) chopped
1Tbl chili powder
1Tbl ground cumin
2tsp garlic powder
2 tsp coriander
1Tbl oregano
Black pepper
Salt
1 6oz can tomato paste
1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
2 14 oz cans of beans (whatever you have.. (black, cannellini, pinto, kidney, garbanzo), drained
1-2cups water as needed
1 vegetable bouillon
 
Directions:
Prep all your veggies, measure your spices, open your tomato cans.
 
If you have a cast iron or glazed pot that works best. But a 4 qt saucepan with a lid will work great, too.
Heat your olive oil in the pot. Add the onion and peppers and saute for 5 minutes until starting to soften. If you are using other veggies add after this along with the garlic. Let cook for another 5 minutes.
 
Add your spices and stir until fragrant (1 minute). Add the can of tomato paste and 1 cup of water. Turn the heat to low and put the lid on. Let cook to really soften the vegetables for 15-20 minutes. Stir every 5 minutes and adjust the temperature so that it is at a low simmer.
 
After these have simmered and softened. Add the crushed tomatoes, vegetable buillon (if you have it, if not just skip) and more water as needed. Add your beans. Stir everything together. Season with salt and pepper.
 
Let cook at a simmer for 10 minutes more. Sample to see if it needs adjustments. Add your spices as you like. I like to add a squirt of fresh lime juice at this point.
 
Serve with cornbread and your favorite toppings.
 
Have extras? Great! Have for lunch the next day, add some rice and roll up into a tortilla (burrito, taco, enchilada), make a chili dog, or try over a baked potato.
 
 

Protein Energy Balls

adapted from Minimalist Baker
12-14 balls
 
 
Ingredients:
½ cup peanut butter (or other nut butter or sun butter)
¼ cup maple syrup (or agave nectar or honey)
1 ¼ cup rolled oats (gluten-free if allergies)
2 ½ Tbl ground flaxseed
2Tbl chia seeds (optional)
2Tbl pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds (optional)
¼ cup dried fruit (cranberries, blueberries, cherries, whatever you have)
 
Directions:
Combine this all in a bowl and use a large spoon or spatula to combine until it is smooth and consistent.
You can add more oats if it is too wet or more peanut butter if too dry.
Use a small cookie scoop or a tablespoon to scoop the dough. Roll into a round ball and set on a plate or in a container. Scoop all the dough into bite-size balls. Eat. Store in a container in the fridge for 7-10 days. These can also be stored in the freezer. (these are no-bake and no fuss). Enjoy!
 

HASH BROWNS

 
serves 4-6
 
Ingredients:
3-4# potatoes (russet, red, Yukon gold, washed well)
Pinch salt and pepper
3T olive oil (or vegetable oil)
 
Directions:
Prep your griddle or pan. Place on the stove. Use a brush or paper towel to brush the pan or griddle with olive oil (this will be a good coating).
 
The Key to making hash browns is squeezing out the excess liquid!
 
On a kitchen towel, grate your potatoes with a hand grater. They don’t need to be peeled (but you can peel if you prefer). Grate the potatoes into a pile.

Gather up the kitchen towel over the sink or a bowl. Twist the towel to squeeze out the water from the potatoes. Continue to hold tightly, twist, and squeeze. It is important to remove all the excess liquid to achieve a crisp hash brown.
 
Turn on your pan or griddle to heat. Once it is hot and the oil is shimmering, open your towel and scrape the potatoes onto the griddle. Once the potatoes are on sprinkle on your salt and pepper. Turn the heat down just slightly and let the potatoes sit and cook for 3-5 minutes. Although you will be tempted to move or flip the potatoes, don’t do it. After a few minutes, use a spatula to lightly pull up a small portion of the potatoes to see if they have browned. If not, let continue to cook for a few more minutes. Once you’ve achieved the desired brown, crisping, give the potatoes a flip. Lightly sprinkle with salt and pepper. Let cook until browned and crispy on the other side. Once done, they are ready to serve. If you are finishing other parts of your breakfast, you can put the potatoes uncovered in a warm oven to keep warm until serving.
 

FRITTATA

serves 1
 
This frittata is is decadent enough to enjoy on it's own or a great compliment to a brunch.
 
 
Ingredients:
2 whole eggs
4T heavy cream OR ½ and 1/2 OR milk OR unsweetened alternative milk
Pinch salt and pepper
Optional add ins
½ oz grated cheese (sharp cheddar, swiss, goat, etc)
½ cup petite diced, mixed veggies (such as spinach, pepper, green or red onion, mushroom, zucchini)
 
Directions:
Preheat your oven to 375°
 
Crack your eggs into a small bowl. Whisk lightly.
 
Add your liquid milk of choice and whisk until combined. Add your pinch of salt and pepper.
(at this point you could also add dried or fresh herbs of choice, approx. 2 tsp)
 
Use a small ceramic bowl or sauce or cup that is sprayed.
 
Pour your egg mixture into the bowl. Sprinkle your veggies or cheese over the top and use a butter knife or fork to gently mix them into the eggs.
 
Place in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes.
 
It will puff and set. You don’t want the center to be liquidy or jiggly.
 

Lemon Poppyseed Bread

Gluten Free, Dairy Free
 
1 loaf
 
Ingredients:
¼ cup vegetable, coconut or olive oil
¾ cup alternative milk of choice (unsweetened)
¼ cup lemon juice
2T zest from 2 lemons
½ cup granulated sugar (alternatively use 12 T maple syrup or agave nectar or honey)
1tsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt
3T poppyseeds (optional)
1 ¼ cup almond flour
1 ¼ cup gluten free flour blend of choice (or ap flour if not worried about gluten)
2tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
Glaze
½ cup powdered sugar
2-3T lemon juice
 
Directions:
Preheat oven to 350°
 
In a large bowl combine all of the liquid ingredients and the lemon zest.
Add the salt and poppyseeds (if using). Add the almond flour and stir to combine.

Add the gf flour blend, baking powder and baking soda. Use a spatula or large spoon to mix together.
Line a loaf pan with parchment paper or spray with a non-stick spray.
Pour the batter into the pan.

Bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes. (it should be lightly brown and set in the middle).
Let sit for 30 minutes to cool and set.
 
Once it is fully cool and unmolded combine the powdered sugar and lemon juice. Whisk to remove lumps.

Drizzle over the loaf and let set.
Serve as is or with fresh fruit.
 

Cinnamon Rolls

These decadent cinnamon rolls can be enjoyed morning, noon, or night! Pair with a bowl of chili, or with your breakfast.Slice those rolls!
Makes 8
 
Ingredients:
 
Dough
¾ cup whole milk (or alternative milk if dairy free)
4T (2 oz) butter, melted (or coconut oil or vegetable oil) if dairy free
2 ¼ tsp active dry yeast (1 packet)
1/8 cup granulated sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
2 cups all-purpose flour
 
Filling
2 oz butter, soft (or soft coconut oil)
¼ cup granulated sugar
½ cup brown sugar
Cinnamon (approx. 1-2T)
 
Directions:
 
Melt the butter in a glass cup in the microwave. Just until melted. Add the milk.
Warm to just warm to the touch (try 40 seconds and test). If it is too hot to touch with your finger, set aside to cool. Add the sugar and yeast. Whisk together. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Pour this into a mixer bowl or just a large bowl. Add the flour and salt. Mix this with a dough hook on low speed for 3-5 minutes until it comes together. Alternatively, mix with a spoon or spatula. Then pour out onto a floured surface and knead for 3-5 minutes.

Set back in your bowl, cover and set aside to rise. 30 minutes-1 hour. It will double in size and get pillowy.
In the meantime, soften the butter. It is best if it is very soft but not fully melted. Don’t worry. If you accidentally melt it that’s fine.

Measure your sugar into a bowl and set aside.
 
Heat the oven to 350°
 
Line a sheet pan with parchment paper (or lightly grease).
 
Clear a counter space to roll out your dough. Lightly flour it.
 
Dump your dough onto the floured surface. Use a spatula or scraper to remove from the bowl.
Gently use your fingers to shape your dough into a rectangle.
Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a rectangle roughly 10” by 16”. It should be even in thickness and have nice corners.
 
Take your soft butter and dump onto your rectangle. Use a small spatula, pastry brush, the back of a spoon or even your fingers to smear the butter evenly over the dough.. covering it completely.
Use a cinnamon jar with a perforated lid. Sprinkle the cinnamon onto the buttered dough until it covers it lightly.
Sprinkle your sugars over the entire surface of the dough.
Use your hand to gently smooth the sugar out so it evenly covers the dough.
Again, sprinkle it with cinnamon to lightly coat.
Time to roll it up.
 
With your hands, gently begin to roll the dough (from the long side). Tucking the dough in to create the roll. Until your dough is a rolled log.

Measure your dough and divide it into 8-10 pieces. Or just eyeball.

Gently pick up each piece. Lightly twist the bottom of each piece to close it up. Set on your pan with this side on the bottom. Continue to do this with the rest of the rolled dough pieces. Place them close together (if you like them soft and baked together). If you like them more browned and well done, then separate the rolls.
Once all of the pieces are on the pan, set aside to rise for approximately 30 minutes in a warm place. On your warm oven works (as long as it doesn’t get overly hot).
Once risen again and pillowy, place in the oven. Bake for approximately 25 minutes. They should be golden brown.

Remove from the oven and let cool.
 
If you’d like drizzle with a combination of powdered sugar and milk or water to a thick paste. Drizzle this over the cinnamon rolls.
 
Enjoy!
 

Cookie Dough

Ingredients:
5 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 ¾ cup brown sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
1T vanilla
1 cup milk of choice
1/3 cup olive oil
¾ cup chocolate chips
 
Directions:
Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl.
Combine the wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Add to the dry and combine with a spatula or spoon.
Add the chocolate chips. Mix until combined. If too dry, add a little more milk. If too wet, add a little more flour.
Scoop and keep in the fridge or freezer to enjoy as is.

Mac N' Cheese

Ingredients:
 
1 pound elbow noodles (or try cavatappi noodles, yum)
4 cups whole milk
2 pounds cheddar cheese (NOT pre-shredded). Get the blocks and shred yourself.
1# sharp cheddar, 1# white Vermont cheddar
¼ cup butter
¼ cup all-purpose flour
 
Directions:
 
Get some water boiling to cook the noodles according to package directions.
In another saucepan heat the butter to melt. Once melted add the flour. Use a whisk to cook the flour and butter for up to a minute. Make sure the heat isn’t too hot.
 
Slowly continue to whisk as you add the milk. Add the milk slowly at first to incorporate into the roux (butter/flour). It will seize up and will slowly begin to cook and thicken. Continue to add the milk until it is all incorporated. Again, make sure the temperature is not too high. You want to slowly thicken this sauce (bechamel). You need to continue to whisk to keep it from scorching on the bottom. Once this has warmed switch to a spatula or spoon and slowly add the grated cheese to the sauce. Add about 1/3 of this. Stir in. Add another third, stir in and add the final batch of cheese. Let it heat through and the cheese will melt. Either add the sauce to the noodles Or the noodles to the sauce.
 
Serve. YUM!

Easy Chickpea and Tomato Curry

serves 4
 
Ingredients:
 
2T olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 small chunk fresh ginger, minced (or 2 tsp dried)
1Tb cumin
1tsp chili powder
1T coriander
2tsp curry powder
2 tsp salt
1 jalapeno, diced (or petite can, diced peppers)
1 can chickpeas (15 oz)
1 28 oz can, crushed tomatoes
Fresh lemon or lime juice
 
Directions: 
 
Heat the oil in a skillet.

Add the onion and sauté a few minutes. Add the garlic and ginger and sauté a minute more.

Add the pepper and dried spices and cook for 1 minute until fragrant.

Add drained chickpeas, tomatoes and one cup of water. Turn the heat down to a simmer and let cook for 15-20 minutes for the flavors to meld together. Stir occasionally during this time.

After this give it a taste and adjust the seasonings as you like. Add more chili powder for spice, salt if needed, a little sugar if it needs a balance or other flavors. If it has gotten thicker than you would like you could add a little water to balance the consistency.

The last thing to add would be a Tablespoon or two of fresh lemon or lime juice. This gives a fresh flavor and exciting boost.
 
Serve as is. Or serve with brown or basmati rice. Serve with roasted potatoes. Or just in a bowl with a warmed tortilla or flatbread. Or try quinoa or millet or another exciting grain.

Broccoli Pesto

Delicious on pasta and grains, veggies, smeared on sandwiches and however you like it
 
Ingredients:
 
2 cups broccoli (lightly steamed) you can use frozen broccoli
4 cups spinach
3 cloves garlic
1 ½ cup sunflower seeds (unsalted)
1 bunch fresh parsley
1T dried basil
1 ½ tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper
½ cup olive oil
2T lemon juice
Add water to thin as needed
 
Directions:
 
In a Cuisinart…..
 
Process sunflower seeds and parsley first.
Add spinach, process, scrape.
Add broccoli. Process. Scrape
Add the rest. Process until combined. Shouldn’t be runny.
Taste and adjust flavor as you like
 

Homemade Ranch Dressing

Ingredients:
 
1 cup mayonnaise
1 cup buttermilk
½ tsp granulated garlic
½ tsp dried onion
¼ tsp salt
1 ½ tsp mustard
1 ½ tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dill
Pepper ground to taste
 
Directions: 
 
Whisk this all together until well combined.
Let chill for 30 minutes before using.

Vanilla Bean Donuts

~30 Mini Doughnuts
 
Ingredients for donuts:
1 cup Flour (AP)
1/3 cup Sugar
1 tea Baking powder
½ tea Kosher salt
1/3 cup Buttermilk
1 Eggs, lightly beaten
1 tbsp Butter, melted
½ Vanilla bean seeds
 
Ingredients for frosting:
½ cup Powdered sugar
1 tbsp Milk
Splash Vanilla extract
a/n Sprinkles
 
Directions:
1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. Spray pan.
2. Mix dry ingredients.
3. In a separate bowl, combine wet ingredients and vanilla bean. Mix well.
4. Pour the liquid mixture into the dry ingredients. Mix until just combined - don't overmix.
5. Use bag to pipe donuts ½ full.
6. Bake the donuts for 5 to 8 minutes - watch them because they bake fast. They will be slightly browned at the edges and will spring back when touched. Let cool in pan for 5 minutes before removing to completely cool.
7. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, mix the powdered sugar, 1/2 tablespoon of milk (to start) and vanilla. Stir until the sugar is completely dissolved. You may need to add more milk to get it to a thick, liquidy consistency suitable for dipping - add a tiny bit at a time until you reach the consistency you want.
8. When the donuts have completely cooled, dip the tops of each one into the glaze (you may need fix the hole in the middle to clear it of glaze). Sprinkle the sprinkles over the top. Let the glaze harden slightly and serve immediately.