in my kitchen

I'm pretty excited about this weeks menu.  After several days (...lets face it, weeks!) of holiday eating, I'm ready for some fresh and healthy food.  But, it is the middle of winter around here.  So as much as I would love to be eating tons of salads and smoothies right now, I know my hands just really want to wrap themselves around warm mugs of tea and steaming bowls of soup.  But, wintery food can still be healthy, and in the spirit of a true healthy new years resolutions, I would like to make a more conscious effort to keep our meals focused on vegetables, whole grains, beans, organic foods, and less processed foods like cereal and cookies.  I've always been fairly health conscious, but I definitely fall prey to convenience foods at times and would love to find some alternatives to the "not so healthy" snacks that somehow end up in my cupboards and subsequently, my belly (yogurt covered almonds, I'm talking to you!)

I've decided to try and focus one dish each week on using beans, one on meat, one on pasta, and for the winter, one on soup.  I fill in the rest of the days with pantry and freezer staples using what I have on hand (this week it's polenta and brussel sprouts,) and also tried to mix in some some easy finger foods for Edwin (like peas and waffles!)  Here's what I came up with...

Monday - cauliflower Alfredo sauce over brown rice pasta and kale
Tuesday - carrot ginger soup
Wednesday - black bean tacos
Thursday - polenta w/ balsamic brussel sprouts
Friday - poached chicken breast and peas
Saturday - blueberry almond overnight oats
Sunday - sweet potato waffles

Pretty fantastic, right?! I'll also whip up a batch of hummus to have for lunches or snacks along with Edwin's current favorite, lots and lots of clementines.  And, if he asks me really really nice, I might make my husband a batch of cheesy ham and potato soup.  I digress. ;)

And if I have an extra moment this week I'll pop back in with a very easy "detox" recipe for anyone looking for a simple new years cleanse.  Have a great week and happy new year!


Wishing you a relaxing holiday filled with lots of family time and delicious healthy food.  Our festivities are well underway.  We are enjoying every second of watching our one year old run around the Christmas tree, dance to holiday tunes, and tear into his presents.  I also roasted my first turkey - success!!  I'm looking forward to making a turkey soup this week with the leftovers...perfect for warming up after our snowshoeing adventures.  We were blessed with a blanket of snow this year and I am taking full advantage of it!  Have a wonderful holiday and see you next year!


in my kitchen

While pulling together recipes for the week I noticed that everything I gravitated towards was full of potatoes, squash, or bread.  I think it's the cold temperatures and snow that is making me crave comfort foods.  I was pleased to find a few dishes that I thought would satisfy my carb craving without putting me in a carb coma - after all that will likely happen next week!  Plus, my pantry is stocked with pasta sauces, garlic, and potatoes and I'm making an effort to use up what I already have on hand.  This week I'll be making (clockwise from top left) spaghetti squash with red sauce, lemon garlic chicken, red chard potato and white bean ragout, miso maple glazed sweet potato tacos (yowza, I'm excited for this one!), a very green salad, and vanilla bean pudding.  Plus, I'll throw in plenty of homemade wild rice bread with sunbutter spread, honey lemon fruit salad, and for the third week in a row - a pot of lentil soup.

Even more exciting than all of the delicious food I'll be making will be my super efficient trip to the grocery store with the list I made of ingredients I need to prepare everything.  It's been more of a challenge heading to the store with my baby these days.  He's really turned into more of a toddler who went from innocently flirting with every person he meets at the store to suddenly standing in the cart and trying to grab everything I'm holding and yelling, "meh meh meh!"  Which I can only assume means "ME!" as in "GIVE THAT TO ME RIGHT NOW OR I'M GOING TO HAVE A TOTAL MELT DOWN AND EMBARRASS THE CRAP OUT OF YOU!"  So I give in and let him stand in the cart and throw blocks of cheese in his hands until I realize that he has actually torn open the package of cheese with his teeth and taken a bite.  True story by the way.  Cross your fingers for me and hope that having a grocery list magically prevents the toddler tantrum.  I'm optimistic.       


in my kitchen

I'm pretty excited to start a new little series here - a round up of recipes from around the web that I'll be cooking each week!  I think my household poses a challenge when it comes to cooking.  For one, we have a small baby who needs lots of fruits, veggies, and healthy fats.  Two, my husband would be happy eating meat and potatoes every day.  And three, I'm an active (and nursing) mama who loves veggies and whole grains.  I feel best when I'm cooking up lots of vegetarian meals, but I also try to be realistic and well rounded to please everyone and keep things easy, affordable, and delicious!  I'm devoted to a handful of recipe blogs, but also find myself scouring the web to come up with dinner based on what's in my pantry.  I love to try new things and sometimes splurge on specialty ingredients like cheese and spices!    

This week I'll be making chicken pasta with a pesto of lemon, parsley, and Parmesan, egg-nog french toast, quinoa salad with toasted almonds, Tuscan kale salad, lots of carrot apple juice, a parsnip & pear puree, and open face egg sandwiches.  Just for starters!  We'll fill in the gaps with avocado & turkey sandwiches, blueberry or pumpkin oatmeal, steamed brussel sprouts, and homemade beef stew from my mother-in-law.  Plus, our sweet tooth gets the best of us most nights and we'll have ice cream or trail mix with chocolate chips or dates and coconut.  I am amazed at how often I head to the grocery store now that we have a little one around.  Feeding this family feels like a full-time job!  What are you making this week?

photos & recipes here: 1/2/3/4/5/6/7


one year

Happy 1st birthday to my little guy!  I've never seen a baby party so hard as he did yesterday at what turned out to be a pretty awesome birthday bash.  I made cake balls and a birthday crown!

Motherhood has been an amazing journey so far - sort of a roller coaster at times - but the best kind.  No matter the ups and downs that life (and lets face it, my emotions) throw at me, at the end of each day I feel incredibly blessed to have this healthy happy baby snuggling up in my arms.  I've recently felt really swept up in his new milestones...walking and talking!  They are so fun that I barely have time to miss those itty bitty newborn days of last year.  That's not to say that I don't get teary when I look back at photos and marvel at all of the changes that have taken place.  Babies really are so incredible!

Thank you Edwin.  For just being you.  And making this the most memorable year of my life.
And, toddlerhood?  We'll see you soon!
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