• Food

    Homemade Pickles

    Remember when I wrote about making sauces and condiments at home instead of store-bought?  Well, here I go adding to the list of things I won’t be buying at the grocery store again.  Pickles.  Pickled ANYthing. A while ago I made a mental note to make some quick pickles because I bought too many cucumbers and I remembered an episode of 30 Minute Meals where Rachel Ray made some pickled veggies.  Before that, I always thought it took weeks to make pickles, at least. Anyway, I never got around to making my own and could not eat enough salad fast enough to keep those cukes from going bad.  On my…

  • 30-minute chili with avocado

    Hearty Healthy 30-Minute Chili

    It’s Tuesday, it’s cold, and you’re tired when you hear “What’s for dinner?!”  That’s when you remember that you never made it to the grocery store today and haven’t even thought about dinner.  There are some things you just always know are in the fridge or freezer and it’s top of mind when they are out.  If you’re like me, unfortunately those are the basic items that so many of your meals are made with. Oh well, what’s a busy woman (or man) to do?  Again, if you’re like me, you’re not about to go out in the cold just to get something for tonight – that’s not very efficient.…

  • Food

    The Green Goddess

    Some nights you just don’t feel like cooking.  Every now and then, the thought of turning on the oven or standing over the stove makes my stomach churn.  And that’s when I’m glad I have enough leftovers for the family… everyone but myself, that is.  And since I don’t want to cook OR ask my DH to do it, my options are limited.  Maybe. Good thing I love veggies and could live my entire life off salad – so many salad options, so little time!  On this night, though, I really wasn’t too interested – plus I didn’t have any lettuce.  No dice. I had been eyeing some avocados all day.  I’m sure…

  • Food

    Cranberry Apple Muffins

    Thanksgiving week I wanted to make something yummy to have with for breakfast without having to cook every morning (which was NOT gonna happen).  And since the littlest was out of school all week I had lots of apples to use up that might have normally gone into his lunch.  AND I also forgot that I had some dried cranberries (no NOT craisins, dried cranberries) that I was snacking on the week before.  Soooo, can you tell where this is going? Cranberries + Apples + Thanksgiving = Cranberry Apple MUFFINS! I promised to share the “recipe” last week, so yes I am a little late but…. here it is!  I…

  • Food

    Adventures in the Green House: WE DID IT!

    Last week my family and I completed a 3 day whole foods cleanse.  We didn’t do any hard core juicing; just cut out all dairy, wheat products, sugars, and meat/flesh.  And technically drank nothing but water, fruits, and veggies. How did it go?  Well, we didn’t kill each other.  But to be clear, we could not have done it longer because I was consistently tired and cranky and just generally not nice. I started out with a menu, but we only followed the breakfast & snacks; we just always kept a bowl of fruit ready.  Mainly because we all felt like we were eating NON-STOP! We all liked different things, most…

  • Food

    3 Salads You May Not Have Considered Before

    This post is inspired by my kiddos, 2 in particular – 1 asked with her head cocked “we’re going to have salad everyday?!” YES and is that a problem?  The other, our youngest, said this when he got his plate “Where’s the salad?  That’s not salad…. there’s no lettuce.  Where’s the lettuce?” So here’s the deal.  First things first… the key to having a “salad” is NOT the lettuce; it’s fresh ingredients (not including meat, of course) and a “dressing” of some sort.  And second….. I would eat salad CONSTANTLY if I could. Now that that’s out of the way, I’m giving you a few SALADS you may not have…

  • Food

    How To Make Easy Homemade Ketchup (& over 20 other restaurant quality sauces)

    If you love to eat well (and maybe even love to cook), this post is for you.  I’m going to give you a recipe for delicious & easy ketchup and other sauces that you can customize to your taste.  All in 1 place;  trust me, you are gonna want to PIN this!  I’ll wait while you do that real quick… It has literally been YEARS since I have bought most condiments, spice blends, or sauces in a grocery store .  And that’s WITH a house full of kids and a hubby who THINK they love all those store bought flavors. It’s not because I don’t like them, but because most of…

  • Food

    Restaurant Quality Food (aka Better Than Store Bought)

    I’ve said it before, I like to cook because I love to EAT. And because more often than not, I am highly disappointed in what I get for my money when we go out to eat (or when someone around here inadvertently buys something prepackaged).  $12 salads using Iceberg lettuce (that has no nutritional value and tastes like water), add guacamole or plain avocado to anything for no less than an EXTRA $6 (when I can buy an avocado on sale for $0.33 each, $0.59 otherwise), bacon for an EXTRA $2, and if I want meat… FORGET IT!  I might as well just go grocery shopping. So most of the time…

  • Food

    Dinnertime just got easier… Maybe

    Everyone knows I like to cook, not for the sake of cooking itself, but because I like to EAT.  So I usually cook 2-3 times a day, even when it’s just me. Well a couple of weeks ago, my littlest (3-year-old) asked to help me cook dinner and whaddaya know…. he’s a natural-born sous chef!  Granted my nerves could only stand for him helping me make salad, but boy did he help me make a MEAN salad! I won’t let him cut anything just yet (even with kitchen scissors), but turns out he’s great at washing fresh fruits and veggies, and shaking up a tasty vinaigrette.  And he assembles a…

  • Food

    Special Occasion Dinner

    Made lobster for the first time for hubby’s birthday.  It was a big hit!  And since I went fancy with the food, I had to get fancy with the presentation too.  This was not a romantic dinner for 2, but a special dinner for the DH.  All the kids were sitting around the table with their “normal” plates of food looking like “how come WE don’t get THAT?!”  (In all fairness, they did get everything except the lobster and wine – they had Salisbury steak with mushroom gravy and juice instead.) I’ll reveal the secret about the mashed potatoes in another post…. stay tuned!