Tag Archives: Recipe

Lemon and Herb Quinoa

Happy Monday! I had the whole weekend off, but I haven’t gotten called in yet today, so I just might have a 3-day weekend. Last week I was called in every day, so it’s been nice to get some stuff done in the last few days. Josh’s brother, girlfriend and our niece, Hannah, are coming to visit this week. We’ve been running around trying to get everything organized and clean. I accomplished a lot on the weekend including a bunch of cooking and homework! This morning I’ve already done a lot too. I woke up, had lemon and hot water, then made myself a energy-packed breakfast. I had 3 scrambled eggs and 2 pieces of toast with sliced avocado on top.

On Saturday I got my Mother-in-law to eat quinoa! I think this was my greatest accomplishment of the weekend and the best part is that she liked it. I cooked salmon on a cedar plank on the BBQ and served it with lemon and herb quinoa and sauteed spinach. It turned out absolutely amazing and was packed full of flavour and nutrients! Below is the recipe for the quinoa.

Cedar Plank SalmonLemon and Herb QuinoaSalmon and Lemon and Herb Quinoa

Lemon and Herb Quinoa

1 cup uncooked quinoa
1 tbsp. olive or coconut oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 shallot, finely diced
2 tbsp. white wine
2 cups vegetable stock (I only had one cup, so I used water for the second one)
4 big slices of lemon zest
1 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. finely grated lemon zest
1 tbsp. each of chives and parsley (or herb of your choice)
Sea salt and pepper to taste
 
  1. Sweat garlic, shallot and a little salt and pepper in pot with oil on medium heat until cooked (about 2 minutes). Add the quinoa and stir for 2 minutes to toast and coat in mixture . Add the white wine and let cook for a minute.
  2. Add the lemon zest and vegetable stock, then increase the heat until it begins to simmer. Turn the heat down to low and cover. Cook for 15 minutes.
  3. When done, stir in the lemon juice, zest, and herbs. Season to taste with sea salt and pepper.

I’m off to a Rypped class at the YMCA, so hope you enjoy the rest of your day!

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Whole Wheat Honey Banana Muffins

Good morning! It’s the weekend! As I said in my last post, I haven’t worked Monday to Friday in years, so it’s a little different for me.

This morning I’m going to a boot camp class at the YMCA. I recently got a membership there, so I want to try a bunch of their classes. Besides that, I have a little running around to do and should probably get some homework done. Oh, and I also want to make something delicious for dinner – but I haven’t thought that far ahead yet.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I was going to give you the recipe for the muffins I made. I really wanted a healthy muffin I could bring to work. I was going to add nuts and maybe a few other things to them, but I was craving a simple banana muffin.

I looked for many recipes, but this is the one I decided to try. It’s great when you find a recipe that you like (and works), because then you can play around with it a little.

Whole Wheat Honey Banana Muffins

Ingredients:

1 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup olive oil
1/2 cup honey
2 eggs
2 bananas, mashed
1/4 cup hot water
 

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees and lightly grease the muffin pan (I skipped this step, but then my muffins were a little difficult to get out. I have a silicone pan that I don’t normally need to grease)

2. Mix the flour, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set aside.

3. In a larger bowl, whisk the olive oil and honey together. Once well mixed, add the eggs and stir until just combined.

4. Mix in your mashed banana.

5. Alternate the dry ingredients and hot water, adding them to your wet mix. Make sure not to over mix, only until combined.

6. Pour mix into muffin pans (I filled them until just below the top). Bake in oven for 15-20 minutes. Mine took about 20, but it depends on your oven.

photo (74)

photo (73)

I just might have to do a little baking today too. I used to want to decorate wedding cakes and be a super-star pastry chef, then I decided to take the cooking direction.

Hope your weekend is going fabulous so far. I better go eat some breakfast before I head out to my class!

It`s Official!

Hello! Guess what!?!? We’re going officially going to Jamaica for 2 weeks next month! We finally made the decision. There were other places available for the dates we wanted, but they were quieter (more boring) areas that didn’t have the adventure feel we wanted. We wanted to go somewhere that had more to offer than sitting around the resort. We’ll be staying in Ocho Rios and there is plenty to do there. We’ll be going zip-lining, hiking up falls, visiting different beaches, tubing down a river, kayaking, windsurfing and much more. The trip is all inclusive, so we just have to pay for some of the extra excursions. I can’t even tell you how excited I am! Don’t worry I’ll take a lot of pictures.

I’ve finally gotten some cooking done. The other day I made a big batch of quinoa salad. I didn’t exactly follow a recipe – I just kind of threw it together. It turned out pretty darn delicious. I even had a couple people have a bowl and give me feedback. My only complaint was that I could have used a little less garlic. I could taste it in my mouth for a while. I loaded it with veggies, a lemon vinaigrette, then topped it with homemade candied walnuts and goats cheese. Yum!

Candied Walnuts or Pecans

1.5 cups walnuts or pecans
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1/4 cup maple syrup
 
1. Heat oven to 350C. Whisk water and sugar together, then bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and whisk in maple syrup. 
2. Stir in nuts and stir to evenly coat. Strain extra liquid and lay on baking pan.
3. Bake for 20 minutes stirring occasionally. It may take a bit longer (or less) depending on the oven. The mixture will start to stick to the nuts. Let cool completely before using.
 

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I also made butter chicken and naan bread from scratch. It’s one of my favourite Indian dishes that I’ve been wanting to make for a while. We had Josh’s sister and her boyfriend over for dinner and they thought it was delicious. Next time I might make it a bit spicier.

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Josh made a roast in the slow cooker yesterday. I chopped the vegetables for him, but he did everything else. It smelt absolutely delicious in the house all day.  I made sure to load it up with lots of veggies!

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I’m not sure what the weather is like where everyone else is, but it’s been warmer than usual here. It’s been above zero which has left the roads sloppy and the snow melting. Some of you might be happy about this, but I`m not impressed. It means bad snowboarding and sledding conditions. We managed to get some skating in last night. I`m not the most athletically talented person, but I always try. It was fun shooting the puck around and getting some exercise. We also went to the gym and pool yesterday, so I`m feeling super today!

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Well that`s all for today. We`re eating left overs tonight then heading out for a snowmobile ride. We`re going to pull each other on the snowboard! This weekend my plans so far include snowboarding, poker night, ice fishing and maybe some shooting. I also need to get organized for the trip since we have to leave to go back to work on Tuesday. Talk to you soon!

Free Tickets and Pasta Recipe

Hey everyone! Happy Friday already! I can’t believe how fast time is going by – I think we’re already on our 10th day off. This week we’ve been doing a lot of running around. I’ve been doing homework, a little job hunting, cooking, got winter tires put on and been just having fun.  On Wednesday we drove about an hour to where there is a lot more snow and went for a snowmobile ride! Josh had spent 2 days working on it, so he wanted to try it out. It was pretty awesome – actually it was more of a tease! This morning it was -20 here, but we hardly have any snow. Definitely not fair!

Yesterday we went out for dinner to Cimo’s Mediterranean Grill. We shared the bruschetta to start and I got the Butternut Squash Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter Sauce and Fresh Parmesan Cheese. Both were delicious! I also had a nice glass of merlot to go along with my dish.

Afterwards, we went to a Cougar’s game (Prince George’s WHL hockey team).  They lost 4-2, however we ended up on the kiss cam! We were enjoying the game and then we looked up and there we were on the big screen. I noticed before him, so I pulled him in for a smooch. We ended up getting a free 18 holes at a local golf course, and 8 FREE tickets to Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, for Sunday night. We must have been pretty cute to have gotten those – that or they are desperate to get rid of tickets – haha!

Overall it was a great night. We are looking forward to going to see him tomorrow night and we get to bring friends!

As promised in my previous post, here is the recipe for the Sundried Tomato and Spinach Pasta with Pesto Chicken.

Sundried Tomato and Spinach Pasta with Pesto Chicken

Yield: 4

Ingredients:

For sauce:

2 large cans of diced tomatoes
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tbsp. olive oil
½ sun dried tomatoes, julienned
Large handful of spinach
Salt and pepper to taste 
 

For chicken:

4 boneless chicken breasts
2 tbsp. pesto of your choice
Splash of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
 
Pasta of your choice
Fresh basil
Fresh parmesan cheese 
 
  1. Sweat garlic in 1 tbsp. olive oil.
  2. Add tomatoes and oregano, and then simmer for 45 minutes until tomatoes are cooked.
  3. Use immersion or regular blender (I used my magic bullet) and pulse. It doesn’t have to be completely smooth. Return to stove and simmer for 15 minutes.
  4. Spread pesto, olive oil, salt and pepper over chicken. You can marinate it a couple hours before if you would like. Sear them in a pan with a little oil until golden on the outside. Place chicken in baking dish and bake at 350°C for approx. 30 minutes or until its reached 165°C.
  5. Cook pasta until al dente.
  6. Toss pasta, sauce, sundried tomatoes and spinach together in sauce pan. Cook slightly until spinach wilts. Sprinkle with fresh basil and parmesan cheese with sliced chicken breast. Enjoy!

That’s it for today! I’ve had to slow down on the cooking to eat left overs. I think the next meal I will make will be a slow-cooker one – it’s cold and I want something that will warm me to the core. Have an awesome weekend!

Power Granola Bars

Hello! How is everyone’s week going? Yesterday was absolutely fantastic since I had the day off. I was so productive all day; it felt great! I had a busy day in the kitchen. I managed to bake granola bars and some muffins, start a batch of kombucha and make a delicious dinner. All of the recipes will be posted in the next few days. I also did some cleaning, went for a run and spent a little time with a friend. I feel like I accomplished so much!

Tomorrow I start a new course in school. No more anatomy! I’m starting symptomology II. I’ll be learning all the different nutritional assessments and receiving my first case study. I’m so excited; I will let you know how it went!

The first recipe I’m going to share with you is the Power Granola Bars that I made yesterday. I’m on the go a lot and when I get hungry I need something quick. These are filling and great to keep you going for a couple hours when you hit that morning or afternoon slump. They’re even a great work-out snack or something to take on a hike. They’re packed with nutrients and they taste delicious!

You can swtich up a lot of the ingredients too. I just looked in my cupboard and started adding anything I thought would taste good. Play around with the recipe and make it your own personal Power Granola Bar!

Power Granola Bars

2 cups rolled oats
1 mashed banana
¼ cup honey (might have to add more depending on how dry mixture is)
¼ cup coconut oil
1/3 cup boiling water
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. cinnamon
¼ cup GF vegan chocolate chips
¾ cup chopped medjool dates
¼ cup unsweetened coconut
¼ cup pumpkin seeds
¼ cup sunflower seeds
5 tbsp. hemp protein powder (or protein powder of your choice)
4 tbsp. ground flax
2 tbsp. chia seeds

2 tbsp. coconut flour 

  1. Add boiling water to dates and let sit for 5 mins. Mash up with a fork. You still want it to be chunky.
  2. Mix all ingredients together in a bowl until well-combined. You may have to add more honey or more coconut flour depending on the texture; you don’t want it too dry or too wet.
  3. Press into an 8 inch pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden and slightly crispy on top.
  4. Let cool completely and cut into squares. Store in an air-tight container with parchment paper in between the layers.

It’s hump day tomorrow already! I will be posting a recipe for the amazing dinner I had last night, so check in tomorrow morning. Have a fabulous day!

It’s All About Me Day!

Hello everyone! Today I had a day that was all about me! Yes, I took an entire day to myself. I woke up early this morning even though I decided not to set an alarm. The first thing I did was make myself a delicious drink with my juicer. It was a great wake up!

I relaxed a bit and looked my favourite blogs and then made myself some breakfast. I had no school or work today and it felt great! I was able to take my time and do what I needed to do this morning. I went for a run and it made me feel even more fabulous. I haven’t been able to run for about a week because I hurt my ankles. I’ve been pretty upset about it, but today I had a good run! It was great to get back at it.

Around 12:30, after looking at the clock many times, I finally got my delivery -vegan and gluten free cookies I ordered from BBelles Bakery! Kris Britton (one of the owners of the bakery) delivered them herself! I was so happy to have finally met her. What she has done with her business is amazing and I’m truly inspired by her. She has her blog, I heart wellness; her bakery, BBelles Bakery; and now her new site helping other women start businesses, Skinny Girl Fat Passion. She posts recipes every day and writes inspiring stories. I hope that one day I will be as successful as her. It was so great to meet her in person.

I tried one of the cookies immediately and they were delicious! They were wrapped up all cute with a pink ribbon around the box and a card thanking me for my purchase. People think vegan or gluten-free mean tasteless, but these cookies are far from that – they are AH-mazing!

After indulging in a cookie, I got ready to head to Granville Island Market – one of my favourite places to be. I decided that I was going to get something extra special to make for dinner – after all today was a day for me!

I walked around looking at all the food – desserts, fruits, vegetables, seafood, fresh pasta, etc. I finally decided to get fish. I got one whole local rainbow trout; it was the perfect size for me. I eat vegetarian/vegan most of the week, but I do love fish! I also bought myself a beautiful pink gerbera daisy. It’s gorgeous!

For dinner I had baked trout with brown rice, butternut squash and spinach (it almost turned out like a risotto). I wanted to have asparagus too, but I completely forgot. I also had a few prawns for an appetizer.

Note: This is an update to this post. I would like to apologize to any vegans or vegetarians, or anyone who would not enjoy a whole fish on their plate looking them in the eyes. I never really thought about it as I was looking, but you can cut the head off and serve it that way. I’m a small town girl who grew up fishing, camping and all that outdoor fun. I fillet my own fish and don’t mind getting a little dirty. I will keep everyone else in mind next time!

Brown Rice with Butternut Squash and Spinach (Serves 2)

½ cup brown rice
1 ¼ cup water (or vegetable stock)
¼ cup chopped onion
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 tbsp. coconut oil
1 cup butternut squash, diced
1 large handful of spinach
Splash of apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. cumin

Sea salt and pepper to taste

  1. In small saucepan, sauté onions and garlic in coconut oil. Once cooked, add brown rice and sauté for a couple minutes.
  2. Add water (or vegetable stock) and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer until done.
  3. Meanwhile, sauté butternut squash in a little coconut oil.
  4. When almost cooked, add the splash of apple cider vinegar and add spinach.
  5. Cook until spinach is done. Once the rice is cooked add this mixture to the rice. Season to your preference!
  6. Enjoy! 

Baked Rainbow Trout

1 whole rainbow trout
6-7 slices of lemon
1-2 cloves of chopped garlic
Any fresh (or dried) herbs such as oregano or thyme
1 tbsp. organic butter

Sea salt and pepper

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. Rinse off trout and place on baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper.
  3. Stuff with lemon slices, garlic, butter and herbs. Place a few lemon slices on top as well.
  4. Bake for about 10-15 minutes (it might take more time depending on the size and how you like it cooked, mine was quite small).

Note: You can wrap the fish in foil paper and bake it in the oven and you can also grill it – it is the best way to have it! 

As most of you can see, I like to keep my recipes simple and with little ingredients. Sometimes I tackle a recipe with many ingredients, but as a student on a budget and with limited time, I’ve been choosing more simple (but still delicious) recipes!

I really enjoyed my dinner. I had it with a glass of Borrowing Owl’s Pinot Gris. I took a trip to the Okanagan in the fall and had the opportunity to visit many vineyards. As a result I have a little collection of wine that I save for special occasions.

Today was truly a wonderful day for me. I feel so relaxed and happy. I have to work all weekend, so I needed to have some down time after a busy week. What do you do to relax? I usually end up cooking something or doing something that I have been itching to do for a while!

I hope everyone has a fabulous weekend! Looking forward to sharing more recipes with you!

A Porridge to Cure Your Winter Blues

Hello everyone! I hope your weekend has been fabulous so far. For those of you in Vancouver, you’re probably looking out your window at the disgusting weather we’re having. It’s freezing! For those of you who are reading from another province (or country!), I give you permission to call me a ‘winter wuss.’ I grew up with cold, dreadful winters in Northern Ontario, but I’ve quickly adapted to British Columbia winters. It’s been pretty cold here this week and by cold I mean minus five. The other night it felt like minus seventeen! My hopes of summer are over. We were having the most beautiful weather in Vancouver just a week ago and now it’s gone!

This is outside now:

This is where I want to be:

Despite my complaints, I do miss some aspects of having a real winter. I grew up ice fishing, snowmobiling and even camping (in cabins) in the winter. The beauty of Vancouver is that you don’t have to drive very far to get a real winter. There are mountains all around and Whistler is not that far away. I haven’t been there, so I have yet to enjoy this luxury.  (I’m hoping to get the opportunity soon; I’ve been anxiously waiting to take a trip there!)

Cold-weather meals are a whole different story. On days like this a healthy salad just doesn’t cut it. You want something warm in your stomach! I guess that’s why a lot of people gain weight in the winter. Many of us hibernate inside eating more and exercising less. I have to say I’ve been quite impressed with myself this winter. I’ve been running almost every day – except today because I got called into work and I don’t want to brave the weather a second time!  I try and eat a salad every day and I limit my intake of sugar – except for my daily two pieces (sometimes more) of organic dark chocolate.

I was definitely craving comfort food when I woke up this morning. I had some left-over quinoa in my refrigerator and decided to come up with something delicious—a Banana and Quinoa Breakfast Porridge! It was warm, delicious and satisfying; exactly what I needed. Here is the recipe:

Banana and Quinoa Breakfast Porridge

1 banana
½ – ¾ cup almond milk
1 tbsp. chia seeds
1 cup cooked quinoa
½ tsp. cinnamon (or more)
1 tbsp. of real maple syrup
Small handful of almonds
1 tbsp. coconut milk (optional)

1 tbsp. shredded unsweetened coconut (optional)

  1. Mash the banana in the bowl. Add the milk, coconut milk and chia seeds and mix well.
  2. In a pot add the banana mixture and cooked quinoa. Cook until desired temperature is reached. You may need to add more milk depending on the consistency you prefer.
  3. Pour into bowl, sprinkle with cinnamon, shredded coconut and almonds. Drizzle with maple syrup and enjoy!

I hope everyone is finding ways of surviving this winter whether it’s bundling up in your comfy sweat pants and watching a movie or making one of your favourite comfort foods!