Monday, September 19, 2011

Come join me over at Chaos in My Ark

So it's week 3 as a stay at home mom and today seems to be "one of those days".  Every feel like that?  Well as part of my new journey as a SAHM I decided to start another little blog that was more about everyday life - It's a little bit of everything home, family, deals, etc. Thought I would let everyone know and invite you to join me over Chaos in my Ark.  

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Menu Plan Monday - September 19, 2011

Entering my third week as a SAHM and I'm finally back on the menu planning bandwagon. As part of our families decision to each more healthy I have some new goals when planning dinners.

*3-4 nights a week (or more) are meatless
*50% of the meal is fruit/vegetable based
*Every meal include some raw food
*Increase intake of whole grains and decrease "white" food

Now our goal is for long term lifestyle changes so I am trying to be realistic so we will still have some of our old favorites from time to time...

Monday - Tortellini Soup with kale and lemon
Tuesday - Tostadas and Salad
Wednesday - Beef Sliders with Sweet Potato Fries & Fruit Kabobs
Thursday - Asian Tofu Stir Fry with Brown Rice
Friday - Homemade Veggie Pizza and Salad
Saturday - Open/Leftovers (Dad's night)
Sunday - Pork Roast with sweet potatoes and apples, Broccoli and Cauliflower and Spinach Salad

Sharing my menu plan over at

Friday, September 16, 2011

Eggplant in Tomato Sauce

Ok, this was so easy I feel kind of weird even calling it a recipe.  All the double digit family members (me, hubby and stepdaughter) loved this so much we kinda fought over who got the last pieces.  In the end there was piece simply because there were 3 pieces, so one for each of us.

Eggplant in Tomato Sauce
1 eggplant
1 cup of jarred tomato sauce (I used a tomato basil)
1 tablespoon flour (you may need more depending on size of eggplant)
sea salt, pepper
garlic powder
italian seasoning
2-3 tablespoons olive oil

Directions: Preheat oven to 375. Slice eggplant into 1/2 inch slices.  Heat olive oil in frying pan on medium high heat.  Mix seasonsing into flour.  Lightly salt eggplant. Quickly dredge eggplant slices into flour and shake off excess. Fry eggplant on each side about 2-3 minutes until golden brown.  Put tomato sauce on bottom of a 9x13 pan.  Place fried eggplant on top of sauce. I placed whichever was the 'crispier' side of the eggplant up. Bake in oven for 10 minutes.  Serve and enjoy. Next time I will make more since there were no leftovers!  I served this with whole wheat spaghetti (using the same jarred pasta sauce) and my italian squash.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

You can juice that?

So today the goal was to get some project done (ie without kiddos)... after dropping off my son at preK I headed for a quick Walmart run. Generally one of my least favorite stores but it's close and I need veggies and ribbon, the very reason Wally world was invented right, so you can get bizarre combinations of items all in one place. Anyway, after loading up my little cart with all my goodies I met a very nice cashier who it turns out has not been exposed to many fruits and vegetables.  I got asked, 'what's this', a lot!

As part of our family's change in diet we bought a juicer and have started juicing fruits and veggies.  If the cashier couldn't figure out what kale was you can imagine her surprise when I told I was going to be juicing it!  After getting my kiddos dropped off, fighting traffic and a trip to the store I was anywhere from ready to start my day of projects.  Oh... I should probably add that my sweet baby girl decided to wake up at 3:30 am again and didn't think going back to sleep in her bassinet was a good idea (insert mama's tired face here...).  So tired mama, lots of projects and energy needed equaled this little juice concoction.

Pick Me Up Juice
3 handfuls of spinach
1 roma tomato
2 stalks of celery (I have found this to be my max celery before feeling like I am drinking dirt)
2 oranges
2 apples (I used one gala and one granny smith)
3 handfuls of baby carrots

It turned out quite yummy.

Monday, September 12, 2011

A legume??? What's that...

Well there has been lots of change in our household since the last time I posted including welcoming a new addition (beautiful baby girl) and my transition to a stay a home mom.  For some reason I seem to like to do change big - why just have one or two major life changes when you can do 3, 4 or 5 at once right?!?!

I know... I'm a little crazy.  

It's the ADD side of my brain that likes chaos I guess...

Well one of the other major changes in our lives is our diet.  After years of eating good tasting but not always good for you food and often feeling tired, sick and unhealthy we have decided to do something about it and change how we eat.  Now I like food too much to give up everything, life is about moderation.  This journey is more about focusing on real food and saving the fun stuff for splurges.  

So in that vein I'm experimenting with new recipes... Meat and potatoes, southern home cooking, casseroles with canned cream of fill in the blank... I can make those in my sleep but vegetarian food is a whole new style for me.  

So back to the legumes.  Decided it's time I learn how to cook a lentil.  Crazy I know but I honestly have never cooked a lentil in my life. I've eaten them (mostly NOT by choice) but never cooked.  

So tonight's adventure was Lentil Burritos... my apologies I did not get a picture, but since they actually turned out to be pretty tasty, I will snap a photo the next time I make them. 

Oh and two great reasons to try lentils - even if you are scared of legumes like me - they cook quickly and are much cheaper than meat!

Green Lentil Burritos 

1 cup of dry green lentils
1/2 onion (I used a medium white)
3-4 carrots - peeled and cut into a small dice
2 tablespoons olive oil
Italian Seasoning
Chili Powder
2 cups of water or stock
Tortillas and fix-ins

Directions: Saute onions and carrots in olive oil over medium heat until slightly soft and caramelized, add spices and garlic.  Add rinsed lentils and water or stock.  I used water tonight but stock would create a richer flavor.  Boil 15-25 minutes. Assemble burritos and enjoy. We used our favorite flour tortillas (a friend brings them from Mexico) and topped them with avocado, plain Greek yogurt, lettuce and tomato.  You could add just about any topping you would normally use in a burrito. If you like cilantro I'm guessing that the lentils would blend well with that herb, I just happen to seriously dislike cilantro and thankfully married one of the only Hispanics alive that agrees with me. 

Highly recommend this recipe for legume newbies like me.  Now I'm just waiting for the weather to turn a little cooler to use lentils in soups, stews and chili!  Somehow I can't make those when it's still 90 degrees outside.