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Vegan Quinoa Protein Bowl with a little Thai flavor

 

 

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Vegan Quinoa Protein Bowl with Roasted Thai Peanut Butter flavored Chickpeas, Brussels Sprouts, Tomatoes, Carrots and Peppers

I love peanut butter. I can eat it by the spoonfuls, but the best part about eating peanut butter for me is, the high plant based protein and antioxidants it has in it. Yay me. Good for my body and my skin. I actually came across an amazing peanut butter a few weeks ago, when I was being interviewed by Mara Davis, television and radio personality, also GURU of all that is too know about food and where to get it.  She is the host of Atlanta Eats radio and television show. I absolutely love this woman, she knows food and she makes me laugh until my ribs crack.

Well as we were having our interview at Krog Street Market, here in Atlanta, she took me to Nature’s Garden Express and turned me on to this amazing peanut butter, Georgia Grinders. The owner Michael at Nature’s Garden Express was generous enough to give me a jar to take home and try. I  have been hooked ever since. This recipe came about when I was just craving a spoonful of their peanut butter.  A quick note here: if you are allergic to peanut butter you can substitute another nut butter of your liking.  This recipe is super simple, loaded with vitamins, vegan based protein and lots of flavor.  You get protein everywhere in this dish, the chick peas, the quinoa , the peanut and a little here in the brussels sprouts.

Thai Peanut Sauce

INGREDIENTS

1 thumb piece of ginger, peeled

1 1/2 cup Georgia Grinders peanut butter

3 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce

2 tablespoon fresh lime juice

2 teaspoon (packed) light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoons srirachi sauce

1 tablespoon coconut oil, melted

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Vegan Quinoa Protein Bowl with Roasted Thai Peanut Butter flavored Chickpeas, Brussels Sprouts, Tomatoes, Carrots and Peppers

 

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat 400

Add ginger into a blender and blend until finely chopped. Add peanut butter, soy sauce, lime juice, brown sugar, srirachi sauce, coconut oil, and blend. ADD  A LITTLE WARM WATER IF IT IS TOO THICK, until smooth. DO AHEAD: Peanut sauce can be made 3 days ahead. Transfer to a small bowl, cover, and chill. Bring to room temperature before using.

Set a side some of the sauce for garnish. Add the remaining sauce over chick peas that have been drained and rinsed. Toss the chickpeas in the sauce until they are covered completely.  Place the chickpeas on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, spread them out, so each one can roast properly. Roast for about 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Once they are roasted remove from the oven and allow to cool. Once cooled use a fork to separate them from one another. Set a side.

Cook 1 cup of quinoa, brown rice or your favorite gluten free grain. Add the grain to the base of the bowl and top with your chickpeas and favorite vegetable toppings. Here I sautéed some brussels sprouts with garlic, lemon juice and a little sea salt in a non stick pan. I added tomatoes, carrots, red bell peppers and the sautéed brussels sprouts. I garnished with a little parsley, but cilantro would be the best option, but I am without a car since it is in the shop, so parsley made it on this dish today. Lol 😂.

The point here is being creative and eating as much as the rainbow as possible.

You can add other raw vegetables here for example, cauliflower, yellow squash, avocado would have been a good options as well. Eating healthy is about creativity and exploration.

So enjoy being a food artist in your kitchen.

Do not forget to Set the Table with Love!! 💕💕💕

Featured

Protein Packed ~ Vegan Red Quinoa Kale Carrot Salad with Sprouted Watermelon Seeds

Last night I was on a conference call talking about how you can transition over to a more plant based vegan protein diet. I am a kidney transplant survivor . I was born with damaged kidneys and I know how animal protein can be very harsh on the kidneys, not to mention on our environment and our over all well being.  First, let me put it out there my eating habits is about nutrition and well being. I eat for my health and my survival as a kidney transplant recipient. I eat out of respect for my husband risking is life and donating his kidney to me. If you have ever donated your kidney to anyone you know this is a big risk of your own well being and life, so Thank you very much for your BIG HEARTS!

My journey is to continue to incorporate healthy choices into my diet and to inspire others to do the same. I am not a label. I am a woman eating as consciously as possible. Now, with that being said, here is some information that may encourage you to eat a more plant based diet.

~ Too much protein is linked to high cholesterol, fluid imbalances in the body, osteoporosis, heart disease and cancers such as renal cancer. 

The truth is we eat too much protein. The average adult woman only needs about 46 grams of protein and the average adult man needs about 56 grams. But the great news is that you can get your intake of protein through a vegan or vegetarian diet, but just substituting your regular meals with more vegan based meals. Try it out one meal at at time. You will not regret it.

This salad I made today is loaded with vegan based protein and lots good stuff for your body. VEGAN BASED PROTEIN FOODS CAN BE DELICIOUS!

RAW AND VEGAN Kale and Red Quinoa Salad with Sprouted Watermelon Seeds

I going to break down the protein for you in this salad

Kale ~ 1 cup 2.9 g

Red Quinoa cooked ~ 8.1 g

Sprouted watermelon seeds by Go Raw Foods  1 oz, ~ 11 g

So a big bowl of this salad with 1 oz of Sprouted watermelon seeds = 22 g vegan protein

YOU ARE HALF WAY THERE Ladies! 🙂

Well here is the recipe:

RAW AND VEGAN Kale and Red Quinoa Salad with Sprouted Watermelon Seeds

Ingredients :

4 cups of Kale chopped

1 cup cranberries

1 cup of cooked red quinoa ( follow the directions on the box)

1/2 cup of grated carrots

1/2 cup of lime juice

2 tbsp organic honey or maple syrup

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp ginger powder

1 tsp garlic powder

pinch of cayenne pepper

1- 2 oz. sprouted watermelon seeds as a garnish

Directions:

Cook the quinoa according to the directions and add the grated carrots in at the end of the cooking process and set a side.

Add the kale and all the other remaining ingredients in a large bowl, EXCEPT THE WATERMELON SEEDS.  Massage the kale until it covered well with the olive oil. I like to massage mines until withers just a little. Add the quinoa, carrots and toss gently until everything is mixed together. Top the salad with 1- 2 oz of the watermelon seeds or as many as you like. Serve and Enjoy your VEGAN energy for the day.

“Raw Chick” Curry Stuffed Peppers

Eating more of a plant based diet can be one of the most cleansing things you can do for you body, mind and spirit. I like to give my body a break from refined sugars, lean meats and the occasional glass of wine. I love incorporating raw foods and vegan dishes into my daily meal prep, because eating more whole foods gives me more energy and mental clarity. Hey, not mention I usually drop about 5-7 pounds. However, a raw diet or a vegan diet is not for everyone, especially long term, unless you have talked to a vegan wellness expert, professional nutritionist and/or your healthcare practitioner. My personal and professional opinion on the matter is, I never met anyone that didn’t benefit from eating more fruits, veggies and drinking clean water.

Now, this is a recipe I make often for my vegan clients and one I enjoy when I am cleansing my system. The key to raw cuisine is understanding how you can convert different raw food ingredients, into cooked food recipes you are familiar with. For instance, in raw cuisine, nuts can become a meat substitute, because of their texture and they are high in protein and good omega fatty acids. They can also become a flour base for “raw food” crust, cookies and cakes. The possibilities are endless. But just for now, let’s stick with making this recipe, by using nuts as a meat substitute. The recipe can be extremely versatile based on your flavor profiles. You can season the nuts with old bay and have more of cajun flavor or season them with Italian herbs and give them more of Italian flare. Use your imagination and see what you can discover. I like to serve this on a bed on greens, with a side salad and maybe a yummy carrot and pineapple juice. However you decide to serve it remember to alway Set the Table with Love. Enjoy.

“Raw Chick” Curry Stuffed Peppers

Raw Chick Pate’

Ingredients:

1 cup almonds, dry

1 cup cashews, dry

1 cup sunflower seeds, dry

1/2 tsp sea salt

2 tsps turmeric

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp cumin powder

1/8 tsp garlic powder

1/8 tsp cayenne pepper

1 cup water

3 mini sweet peppers, cut in halves (I used red, yellow and orange)

1 red bell pepper, diced for garnish

chopped cilantro for garnish (optional)

Instructions:

Raw Chick Curry Stuffed Peppers
  1. Put nuts, seeds, and all the spices into a food processor and process

into a powder. Add water and process until the mixture is well

incorporated. You are looking for more of a chunky consistency than it

being totally smooth.

2. Cut the peppers into halves and stuff the Raw Chick Pate’ into each

pepper. Garnish with peppers, cilantro and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Makes 6 mini peppers

Excerpt From: Lisa Washington. “Set the Table with Love Farm to Table Cuisine.” Apple Books.

Vegan Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie

What do you do with a large sweet potato and a bag of French lentils and you are just craving home and comfort? Shepherd’s pie and a Vegan Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie.

So let’s get a bit familiar with this pie:

Shepherd’s pie, common and inexpensive British dish originating from the sheep country in Scotland and northern England. It is a baked meat pie made with minced or diced lamb and topped with a thick layer of mashed potatoes. Although the dish is sometimes called cottage pie, that name is usually given to a version featuring beef. It is thought that peasant housewives invented the pies as a way of repackaging leftovers from the Sunday roast. Source :https://www.britannica.com/topic/shepherds-pie .

Shepherd’s pie in my household was actually one of my favorite dishes. My mom would make it in the fall and winter months. My favorite part was was the mashes potatoes and sweet peas and carrots. I wasn’t a big meat eater growing up, but you ate whatever mom put on the table. I remember times being hard for us growing up, but my mother made sure we had a hot meal, clean clothes on our backs and lots of laughs. She was a very funny woman. Shepherd’s pie was special , it was comforting and a time to cuddle up with my family and enjoy a warm hearty meal together. My mother used ground beef, carrot, sweet peas, celery, onions and garlic as the base with lots of thyme. It was so yummy. I believe I have made this recipe only once in my life. Why? Why would I make a childhood favorite only once, because some dishes your mom just makes better, she adds that special mom LOVE ingredient.

This is what brought this recipe to life. Mother’s Day is coming up and I am missing my mom. She has been gone for 16 years now and I this time of the year I miss her so much and I just wanted to feel home. I do not eat meat like that anymore, no I am not a vegan or a vegetarian, but my body craves plants more so I listen. Honoring myself and what my heart was desiring birth this lovely and delicious version of Shepherd’s pie. I hope you enjoy it and it brings your soul comfort and a smile.

Oh yes, don’t forget to Set the Table with Love. Thanks Mom for always teaching me how.

Sweet Potatoes

SWEET POTATOES

  • 1  large organic sweet potato (thoroughly washed, peeled and roughly chopped into big chunks)
  • Organic vegetable broth
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp thyme
  • 1 tsp or more of maple syrup, depending on how sweet the potatoes are.
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
The Filings

FILLING

  • 1  cup French lentils, cooked (follow instructions on package)
  • 1 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 1 small onion (diced)
  • 2 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 small bay leaf
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme
  • sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste
  • pinch of red pepper flakes
  • 1-2 small carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 cup frozen peas

Vegan Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie

Instructions

  1. Place sweet potato in a large pot and fill with water until they’re just covered. Bring to a boil over high heat. Then reduce to medium-high heat and cook for 15-20 minutes or until you stick a fork in it and it breaks apart.
  2. Once cooked, drain and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Use a masher or fork to mash until smooth. Add coconut oil, all the spices and season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover and set aside.
  3. Next heat a large pot over medium heat. Once hot, add coconut oil, onions, and garlic and sauté until lightly browned and caramelized – about 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. Then add lentils, vegetable broth, bay leaf and the thyme, and red pepper flakes and stir. Bring to a low boil. Then reduce heat to simmer. Continue cooking until lentils are tender (20-30 minutes).
  5. In the last 15 minutes of cooking the lentils, add the carrots, and celery. Cook until the carrots and celery are a bit tender, but not mushy. Add in the frozen corn and sweet peas, stir, and cover and allow to cook for another 2-3 minutes. Drain the lentils. Taste and adjust flavor to your preference.
  6. Transfer the lentil mixture into oven-safe baking dish and top with the mashed sweet potatoes. Smooth down with a spoon.
  7. Set on a baking sheet to catch any juices come from the pie and bake for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are lightly browned on top and the edges are bubbling.
  8. Let cool at bit before serving.

Notes

Super Easy Breakfast Carrot Cake Bites

After Easter feast, my body needed to cleanse. A raw vegan diet is the best way for me to get rid of all the pies and cakes I indulged in and not to mention, my mac and cheese that’s made with six cheeses.

But a girl still needs a little something sweet in her life. My Carrot Cake Bites does the trick every-time. Now on my blog I do have this recipe, but the bites are shaped into balls. To make them square bites, you will need to pour the mixture into a square pan and gently smooth out, you want the bites to be about 1 -1 1/2 inches thick. Put them in the fridge for one hour or over night to firm up, cut them out into squares, top each one with dried coconut and Enjoy. These go well with a cup of cinnamon tea. Remember to always Set the Table with Love. 💕💕💕💕

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 cup gluten free rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 shredded unsweetened coconut, set aside 2 tbsp for garnish
  • 3/4 cup dried raisins
  • 1 cup grated carrots, peeled
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp cloves
  • ¼  cup water or more if needed

INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Blend oats, sunflower seeds, 1/2 cup coconut  in vitamix (food processor should work too) until you get a fine consistency like flour.
  2. Add in dried raisins, pulse a few times to break them up then add carrots, maple syrup, vanilla and spices.
  3. Slowly add in water. You looking for a consistency of nice slightly wet cookie dough,

4. Pour the mixture into a square pan and gently smooth out, you want the bites to be about 1 – 11/2 inches thick. Put them in the fridge for one hour or over night to firm up, cut them out into squares, top each one with dried shredded coconut

5. Enjoy!

Asparagus with a Ground Mustard Champagne Vinaigrette

As I promised here is another healthy Easter side dish you can prepare super fast, but fast doesn’t mean you are skimping on flavor. Yes, I love how the shaved parmesan pulls this dish together. Enjoy and Always Set the Table with Love. 💕

Happy Easter.

TIP: The vinaigrette will last for a week in he fridge. Put it in an air tight container.

Ground Mustard Champagne Vinaigrette

Ingredients:

• 1/3 cup Champagne vinegar

• 2 tsp ground mustard

• 1 lemon, juiced

• 1 small shallot, finely diced

• 1 tsp honey

• 1/4 tsp salt

• 1/4 tsp pepper

• 1/2 cup olive oil

Add all of the ingredients except the olive oil to a mixing bowl and whisk together. Slowly add the olive oil and whisk vigorously until the dressing is combined.

Drizzle over the asparagus, right before serving or toss the asparagus in the dressing top with shaved parmesan (optional)

Asparagus

Ingredients :

• 1 bushel of asparagus or more based on how many you are serving.

• Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

1 Heat blanching water: Fill a medium saucepan halfway with lightly salted water. Bring to a boil.

2 Prep the asparagus: While the water is heating, prepare the asparagus. Rinse them thoroughly; break off any tough, white bottoms and discard.

Cut the spears into 1 to 2 inch sections, slicing the asparagus at a slight diagonal.

3 Blanch the asparagus: Add the asparagus to the boiling water and lower the heat slightly to maintain a simmer. Parboil the asparagus for exactly 2 minutes. Drain the hot water.

4 While the asparagus are still hot, toss them in a bowl with a generous amount of the Ground Mustard Champagne Vinaigrette or plate the asparagus on a pretty platter and drizzle the vinaigrette over it and shave parmesan over top.

Salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm or room temperature.

Easter Side Dish ~ Roasted Parmesan Brussels Sprouts

Easter is in a week and everyone is getting their menus ready. The typical Easter dishes usually includes, of course a Baked Ham with Brown Sugar , Classic Deviled Eggs, Macaroni and Cheese and perhaps Scallop Potatoes. Just listing all of that makes me hungry. I love these dishes and I will definitely be making my Four Cheese Macaroni and Cheese, but I do enjoy a few lighter side dishes. One of my favorites and it’s super easy, is my Roasted Parmesan Brussels Sprouts. They are crispy on the outside from the parmesan and nice and soft on the inside. I get it, not everyone is a brussels sprout fan, but throw some cheese on something and honey they will eat it. All kidding aside these are pretty good and they are super easy.

If you are the one that is preparing Easter dinner, my advice, do not make every dish super complicated. I leave that to about two or three dishes and the rest is delicious and easy side dishes. Entertaining is all about spending time with the ones you love and sharing lots of laughs and memories, over family favorites.

For this recipe, I add a balsamic glaze sometimes with beautiful green basil leaves to give it some freshness. It’s Spring after all and herbs are an excellent way to add more flavor and brightness.

Oh yeah! Do not forget to Set the Table with Love. Enjoy!

Roasted Parmesan Brussels Sprouts

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lbs brussel sprouts (trimmed & halved)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/3 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • balsamic glaze (optional)
  • basil leaves for garnish

Instructions:

  1. Heat oven to 425 degrees. Add parchment paper to a cookie sheet.
  2. In a bowl, combine the trimmed and halved brussels sprouts with the remaining ingredients. Toss together to coat all the brussels sprouts.
  3. Lay the brussels sprouts onto the cookie sheet, separate them, so they do not touch. This will help them bake and steam.
  4. Add a little more parmesan cheese on top of each one, to help created a crust.
  5. Cook 16-18 minutes. Serve Immediately or add balsamic glaze and basil as a garnish.

Roasted Parmesan Brussels Sprouts with Balsamic Glaze


Healing Tuesday~ Good Food, Energy Work, lots of Laughs and some Wine.

Long title. Yes. I know, but I couldn’t put it any other way, because that is what Tuesdays are like with my good friend Loyale. She is this incredible Wellness and Lifestyle Coach. She has been on a journey of wellness for over two decades and she shares her healing with so many of us, I am grateful to be one of those souls. She keeps me open up in my body, mind and soul through reiki and massage therapy. I in turn, life coach her, feed her keto meals and reiki her as well. It’s a beautiful exchange of energy and love.

I am so grateful for our times together. Today, I think the energy was truly about clearing and allowing space for what truly suppose to be there within ourselves and our lives.

So let me allow you, into a Tuesday with Loyale and I. Are you ready? Well it begins with her unloading that huge massage table, she’s a small powerhouse with this amazing infectious smile, and let me tell you, she handles that massage table like no other. She comes in and set things up and my body instantly begins to relax. I am in the kitchen cooking up a keto friendly breakfast for her. Today I made a keto friendly eggs benedict, 86 the English muffin, add instead, avocado and sliced tomatoes, fresh herbs and it’s a magical morning and she’s a happy girl.

Keto friendly Egg Benedict with Tomatoes and Avocados
Egg Benedict with Tomatoes, Avocados and Potatoes

We sit and talk a bit about our lives and what we are moving through, over a delicious breakfast and her keto coffee and my chai latte. Life coaching begins, this time helps me with how to move in her reiki session. Healing is not just about what we put in our bodies, but also about what we put into our spaces and in our minds and hearts. We are always digesting life. The question is being conscious of what we are digesting and how we are digesting life. Does it all serve our highest good? Is it healing us or making is sick? These are important questions we need to ask ourselves, if were are to stay healthy spiritual beings.

After breakfast we get into more energetic healing. Our reiki and massage sessions are full of deep breath, aromatherapy, prayer and just allowing ourselves to let go and enjoy healing touch and positive intentions being sent from one soul to the other.

Once we are full of just pure bliss, we talk more about what was revealed in our individual therapies and how we can move more consciously in life. Now it’s time for lunch. Then I remembered, I have a roasted chicken in my fridge. Now, how can I make this special for her keto diet. I know, make a pan sauce with butter, white wine, fresh rosemary and garlic. Now we have a Pan Seared Roasted Chicken with a White Wine Rosemary and Garlic Butter Sauce. I also pulled out of my fridge some blackberries, homemade lavender infused fudge with sea salt, I made a few days ago for my grandkids and pluck some mint from my herb garden, now we have dessert.

Homemade Lavender Infused Fudge with Blackberries and Mint
Pan Seared Roasted Chicken with a White Wine Rosemary and Garlic Butter Sauce

Healing starts with the intention of what we are pouring into others and ourselves. In all that you do, pour love into it, pour compassion into it, pour your soul into it and you have all the ingredients of making people feel alive, awaken, loved, HEALED. This is what we do on Tuesday. I am grateful! Here’s an idea, start a healing day for you and your friends, by just exchanging your God giving gifts to bring a little happiness into their lives and yours. Thanks Loyale, until next Tuesday.

Orecchiette Pasta with Roasted Tomatoes, Parmesan, Mint and Lemon Zest

So in the state of Georgia we all felt last week that Springtime was coming a little early, that wasn’t the case, of course. But that doesn’t mean a girl didn’t get inspired by the warm days to whip up something little and refreshing.

This is one of my favorite spring/summertime pastas to make. Don’t get intimidated, it’s a pretty simple pasta recipe. I found this one on Martha Stewart’s website, it is wonderful with my roasted tomatoes. The mint and lemon zest, just says summertime in your mouth.

The great thing about making this pasta is you can use your imagination to create other version of it. I love to add chickpeas, sautéed kale or spinach to the recipe with a little bit of parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes. Let your imagination go wild and while you are at remember to Set the Table with Love. 💕

Ingredients:

2 cups semolina flour, plus more for baking sheet

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon coarse salt

1 cup water, divided, plus more if needed

Directions:

1. Mound semolina and all-purpose flours and salt in 3 separate piles on a large, clean work surface.

2. Using your fingers, swirl ingredients together until combined.

3. Gather flour mixture into a pile, and create a well in center. Pour 1/2 cup water into well.

4. Gradually incorporate flour mixture into water using your fingers.

5. Once all the water is absorbed, continue adding water, 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture begins to form a dough.
6. Start to gather and knead dough, working it until no dry flour remains on work surface.

7. Continue to knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.

8. Divide dough into 16 equal portions, and cover them with a clean, damp kitchen towel.

9. Roll 1 portion of dough into an 18-inch-long rope.

10. Use a knife to cut and drag a 1/3-inch piece of dough from end of rope facing you — a grainy wooden cutting board helps grip the dough.

11. Holding knife at a 45-degree angle to work surface, press and roll dough toward you.
12. Unfurl each piece of dough over your thumb in the opposite direction to form a concave shape, and transfer to a rimmed baking sheet lightly sprinkled with semolina flour. Repeat with remaining dough. Orecchiette can be stored at room temperature in a single layer overnight; cover with a clean kitchen towel or plastic wrap.

Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

Ingredients

4 pints cherry tomatoes

Good olive oil

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Sea salt

1 cup Parmesan cheese

12 -15 mint leaves

Lemon zest

Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle at the end

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Toss the tomatoes lightly with olive oil on a sheet pan. Spread them out into one layer and sprinkle generously with kosher salt and pepper. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until the tomatoes are soft.

3. Transfer the tomatoes to a serving bowl and sprinkle with sea salt. Add in a little pasta water to help make a sauce, then add in drained pasta, lots of parmesan cheese, olive oil, mint leaves and lemon zest and gently toss. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.

Winter Detox Soup

This is simple and super easy! But here’s the twist. You eat this soup for breakfast!! What?!! Yes, breakfast. Soup for breakfast has incredible health benefits.

Having soup in the am helps with better digestion and elimination. When we are cleansed from the inside , we have more energy and our immune system is able to function better. This will help us ward off all those yuckies that our kids lovingly bring home to us.

Here’s a few benefits:

1. They are quick and easy, especially when you are in a hurry. Pour it in a Yeti thermal and go.

2. They are loaded with lots of nutrients,. A super easy way to get what you need all at once.

3. They help with digestion, because of the high fiber content and the liquid from the broths, which also helps with elimination.

4. The options are endless. You will never get bored with soup.

5. You feel fuller longer, because they are nutritionally dense.

So, why not?

Here’s my go to:

Ingredient:

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon turmeric

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon ginger, powder

1/2 cup onions, peeled and chopped

1 teaspoon ginger, peeled and chopped

1 large garlic clove, peeled and chopped

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, optional

2 sprigs of thyme, remove leaves to use in the soup

Sea salt and black pepper to taste

3 carrots, peeled and chopped

1 large zucchini, chopped

1 large yellow squash, chopped

1 1/2 cup cauliflower florets

1 /2 cup red bell pepper, chopped

1 cup kale, finely chopped, fresh or frozen

32 fl oz. Vegetable or Chicken Broth

Directions:

In a medium pot or Dutch oven add the olive oil over medium heat. Next add all your spices, stir and cook the spices for 15 seconds. Add the aromatics and sea salt and pepper, ginger, garlic, onions, red pepper flakes and thyme leaves , stir and cook for 1 minutes. Add the vegetables except the kale, Stir and cook for 5 -7 minutes, until the pot starts to get brown pieces at the bottom. Add the broth, stir and taste. Adjust seasonings, add more of the previous seasoning, to taste , plus add more salt or pepper, if needed. Turn up the heat and bring everything to a boil. Then turn the heat down to medium and allow to cook for 20 minutes, until the carrots and cauliflower are soft, but still has some crunch. Add chopped kale and cook for another 3-5 minutes. Serve immediately.

Smothered Chicken Breast with potatoes, carrots, garlic, celery and onions

Growing up my mother would make the best smothered pork chops, ever.  The recipe was very simple; buttermilk, chicken broth, flour, onions and garlic. It was probably one of my favorite dishes she made for us, outside of her macaroni and cheese. Well,  I rarely make pork chops, only when my in-law request them,  they like to call them, “drunken pork chops”, because they are made with a red wine reduction. LOL. 🙂 .

I have over the years tweaked my mom’s delicous recipe and made it my own , instead of pork chops, I use chicken breast.  I think my mom would be very proud, she loved herself some butter.

This recipe is for those days you are craving some true comfort food.  I like to whip up some of my parmesan and thyme biscuits to go along side this dish.  This recipe is rich in flavor and possibly calories to booth, but it’s comfort food, right? I hope it will become a family staple in your home and a memory for you and your family.  Enjoy and remember to always Set the Table with Love.

biscuits
Parmesan and Thyme Biscuits

smotheredchicken2
Smothered Chicken with Potatoes, Carrots, Onions and Celery

Ingredients:

3 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp ghee

4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Salt and pepper, to season chicken

1/2 cup all-purpose flour plus 2 tbsp
separated

10 baby potatoes, cut in half, boiled until almost cooked through, this step will cut back on cooking time.

1 medium onion
chopped

1 medium carrot, peeled and chopped

1 to 2 tender celery stalks, chopped

2 tsp minced garlic

2-3 sprigs of fresh thyme, pulled off the stem

1 cup good white wine

3 cups low sodium chicken stock ( Imagine is an excellent brand, for deep flavor) or more to cover chicken

Sea salt and black pepper

1 tsp garlic powder

1/2  tsp smoked paprika

pinch of cayenne pepper ( optional, my husband is Cajun )

 

Directions:

1. Heat 3 tablespoons of oil and 1 tbsp of ghee in large pan or dutch oven over medium heat.
2. Season chicken breasts with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Dredge chicken breasts lightly in 1/2 cup of flour then brown in skillet on both sides.
4. Once browned, remove chicken from skillet and drain on paper towel. Set aside.
5. Add the onion, carrot, celery to the pan, stir in to deglaze the pan, pulling the brown bits up from the pan, this adds flavor.  Saute’ for about 3-4 minutes until lightly browned and tender, but there is still a bit of crunch.
6. Add minced garlic and fresh thyme and saute’ for 1 minute.
7. Next add 1 additional tablespoon of ghee to skillet.
8. Allow the flour to brown then pour in white wine and chicken stock.
9. Turn heat to high to bring to a boil and season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, smoked paprika and pinch of cayenne pepper( optional) and whisk together.
10.  Lower heat to medium.  Add back in chicken, and the potatoes and put lid on pan. Allow the sauce to thicken until it coats the back of a spoon and the chicken is nice and tender.  If the sauce is too thick add more chicken broth and stir, let cook down until desired thickness.

* You can eat this alone or serve with rice or noodles. Since I cooked this with baby potatoes, we ate it alone with my homemade biscuits. Click the link for my biscuit recipe, you can add about 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese and 1 tbsp of thyme to give them a little something special.  Southern Style Biscuits ( NO LARD Needed) Sorry Mom 🙂

 

Beet Salad with a Parsley and Walnut Pesto drizzled with Orange Vinaigrette

I adore beets. They are loaded with lots fiber, vitamin C and they help with inflammation in the body, which mean they are good for you, but they also taste amazing. I love to add beets to my salads, smoothies, and they are awesome sautéed, roasted or just raw.

Today I was craving a salad, but not the lettuce type. I looked in my fridge and remembered, I bought diced beets already marinated from my favorite beet company, Love Beets ! They made this salad easy to make, because everything is seasoned and ready to assemble. I just had to slice the red beets.

I wanted this to look a bit fancy, so I used one of my metal rounds to assemble the dish, but you can easily, slice your beets, top with the pesto and drizzle some of your orange vinaigrette on top and toss. However you decide to do it, just remember to Set the Table with Love.

Beets Rock!!!

Ingredients:

1 pack of Love Beets diced marinated golden beets

1 pack of Love Beets marinated red beets thinly sliced

For the Parsley walnut pesto:

Ingredients:

1 cup shelled walnuts, about 3 1/2 ounces

2 cups chopped parsley, about 1 bunch

1/2 cup grated pecorino or parmesan cheese or if vegan nutritional yeast

3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup olive oil

Directions:

1. Put the walnuts, parsley, cheese, garlic, and salt in a food processor and pulse for a few seconds to combine. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, then pulse again.

2. Drizzle in the olive oil while the machine is running just long enough to incorporate the oil, about 20-30 seconds.

Orange Vinaigrette

Ingredient:

1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon Dijon-style prepared mustard

2 teaspoons honey

1/8 teaspoon cracked black pepper

Pinch of salt

Directions:

In a small jar with a tight-fitting cover, combine the orange juice, vinegar, mustard, honey and pepper. Cover and shake well until combined. To store, refrigerate for up to 1 week. Shake well before serving.

Place your metal round on a pretty plate. Inside the round, layer the thinly sliced red beets, then top with the diced beets, stacking them on top of the red beets slices, until you have no space left. Add some pesto, then start the process over, until you end with a layer of pesto on top of the golden beets. Place on fridge to set for 30 minutes. Gently remove the metal round and drizzle with the vinaigrette and serve immediately. 💕