Monday, September 17, 2012

Skillet Gnocchi with Spinach and White Beans

Recipe HERE.

Yumm people. Yumm.

Because the recipe didn't have me boil the gnocchi (we found a whole wheat version that used sweet potatoes), I did 2 cans of italian tomatoes instead of just the one and let it simmer a while before adding the cheese. I did 15 oz (1 1/2 bags) of spinach and it was great.

So, so, yummy!!!

Monday, July 30, 2012

ETL- Susan's Take

Hi friends!

I have a friend in my ward named Susan. She has a Masters Degree in Nutrition. I love to chat with her, get her opinions and etc. She's a great cook and I know that she feeds her family excellently.

Well... she was looking for a book to read and I asked her to read Eat to Live. I wanted to know whether the science he sites is sound, and if he was accurately representing the research.

She felt like he was using good studies, and that he did not make any claims beyond what the research/science supports (which she HAS seen people do in other books). She approved! In fact, she was actually disappointed. She thought based on how I described the book to her that it was going to be really extreme and radical-- but in her opinion it wasn't. Isn't that nice to hear? SO many people find the way we are trying to eat as extreme!

She's someone whose opinion on food matters to me, and I just thought I would share her validating opinion with you too :)

Hope your week is off to a good start!


Friday, June 22, 2012

Raw Pate Spread

3 Cups sunflower seed or pecans ( i use sunflower seed because they are less $) 1/4 cup lemon juice (may need a little more) 1/3 cup olive oil 4 dates 1 bunch of parsley or cilantro (either is great. i do like the cilantro a little more). dash of salt 3-5 cloves of garlic Mix seeds or pecans first. Add the rest of the ingredients. You may need to add a little more lemon juice or olive oil to make it sticky (like play dough sticky). I like to buy baby portabella mushroom from Costco ($5) and Kalamata olives from Costco ($7.50 for a huge jar), stuff the mushrooms and top it with an olive. You can also take big slices of red cabbage and spread it on that. Today I used nori sheets (like for sushi), put the spread on, thin slices of avocado,olives, carrots and celery. So yummy! You could stuff small peppers etc. Ps there is just something about the Kalamata olives that taste so good with this.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Raw Pomegranate Oatmeal

If you like pomegranate juice, you'll love this.  Just soak some rolled oats in pomegranate juice in the fridge for a few hours. You can also add raisins or craisins which plump up during the soak.  It is super delicious!

For Alysa

This recipe is dedicated to my friend Alysa who reads this blog. Friends... you may be interested to know that she is the author of a delightful book blog! Find that HERE. She often blogs about children's books and I know we are all on the look out for good ones!

The reason this post is dedicated to her is because it uses dry beans which I know she has an abundance of and wants to use! When we made this last night and really liked it, I wanted to share it with her and I know that she reads this blog. This one's for you friend!

Slow Cooker Garden Vegetable Sauce with Chickpeas (From America's Test Kitchen)

2 tbsp olive oil
3 onions, minced (I did one whole and it was great!)
2 carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise and cubed (I did 4 carrots. just 2? They must have been large!)
8 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup flour
2 cups veggie broth
2 cups water
1 1/4 cups dry chickpeas, picked over and rinsed
2 bay leaves (Alysa, if you need some I have a ton! Beachy's sells them for super cheap!)
1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cubed
2 tomatoes, cored and cut into 1/2 inch pieces
6 oz baby spinach (6 cups)
salt and pepper
parmesan cheese- optional
Short Pasta to serve over (we used a whole grain penne. It was great! The picture has it over regular bow tie pasta. I wish they made a whole grain bow tie! I also think this would be good over rice)

Cook onion, carrots, garlic and red p flakes in oil till onions are soft. Stir in flour and cook 1 min. Slowly stir in 1 cup of the veg broth to thicken, avoiding lumps. Transfer to slow cooker. Stir water, chickpeas, remaining broth and bay leaves into slow cooker. Cover and cook until chickpeas are tender (9-11 hrs. on low, 5-7 on high). Stir in zucchini, cover and cook on high until tender (15-20 min). Discard bay leaves. Stir in tomatoes and spinach and let sit till heated through and spinach wilts (5 min). Stir in salt and pepper before serving. Serve over cooked pasta with parmesan if desired.

Hope your week is off to a good start ladies!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Slow Cooker Ratatouille

Guys! I made my own recipe today! It wasn't as beautiful as my fancy ratatouille, but the flavor was very nearly the exact same. And you know what? I have decided I am not in a 'fancy ratatouille' phase of life. I am in a 'slow cooker ratatouille' phase of life. And I am coming to terms with that!

Ashlee's Slow Cooker Ratatouille

4 small zucchini or summer squash or both, chopped in bite size pieces (cubes not circles)
1 large eggplant, chopped a bit larger than the squash (skin on)
1-2 bell peppers (red, orange or yellow work best!), seeded and diced
6 -7 cloves garlic, smooshed and minced
1/2-1 whole onion, chopped fine
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes with juices
1 (6oz) can italian style tomato paste
salt, pepper, italian seasoning and red pepper flakes to taste
a squeeze of agave or a bit of sugar (2 tsp?)

Crusty bread, or cooked brown rice, or couscous to serve with or as a base to put the ratatouille atop. (We did ours over brown rice which was good, but I was thinking this would make a good sandwich with toasted garlic crostini and some mozzarella!)

Sour cream to serve with (The french would find me sacrilegious I'm sure for putting sour cream on ratatouille, but I don't care! We like it! Corey likes his without though, and the baby had his without too.)

Cook until the veggies are mushy but not disintegrated.

That's it! Pretty easy, and it made the house smell so good. I am a ratatouille addict! And I am so glad the whole family likes it too. Even the baby thought it was delish!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Main Dish Mango Salad -yummmm

Hi guys!

I have been scouring the Earth in search of yummy, main dish salad recipes. Do you get sick of your standbys? I do. We had this one tonight and lu-huved it! The dressing is particularly good!

*** Note: I like to put recipes in their original form, but I don't mind saying right now that to keep costs down I did brown rice and canola oil instead of quinoa and safflower oil. I also added black beans to make it more substantial. Also: I didn't think all the salt in the recipe was necessary, and probably some of you won't either, but next time I actually do plan to add it all.

Mango Salad - (Whole Food Mommies)

mix together and set aside:

1 tomato, chopped
1 cucumber, chopped
1 avacado, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 bell pepper (any color), chopped
1 mango, chopped (I used 2 and I can't imagine using less)
1 cup chopped jicama (I shredded- so much easier, and I would call this ingredient optional but yummy)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
salt to taste
chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

on each serving plate lay:

greens of choice (plain jane romaine worked great for me!)

topped with:

cooked, cooled quinoa
(this is where I added the black beans)

When serving, top greens/quinoa with the mango mixture and dressing (recipe below)

Mango Lime Dressing

1 cup fresh mango
1/2 cup safflower oil
1/4 cup agave
1/4 cup lime juice
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 clove garlic

blend in blender or food processor until smooth.

We also like whole food mommies "Tiffany's Waldorf Pitas," but instead of serving it on pitas-- we served on greens with some Brianna's Poppyseed Dressing.

Here's to spring and summer and SALADS!!!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Favorite Bean Sides?

Hi All,

So sometimes I want my veggies pure. I don't want them IN something. For instance... tonight I wanted steamed asparagus with lemon squeezed over it, and baked, mashed sweet potatoes. Knowing that I couldn't make a meal with JUST that I made Emily's Golden Artichoke Chickpea Salad, which I am mildly addicted to. Bada Bing, Bada Boom: MEAL. Or at least it worked for me anyhow.

SO... the question I want to ask is this: What are your favorite Bean Sides? Or do you mostly cook your beans IN something. I sometimes do baked beans, and I have a good easy mexican bean type side, but what else? I am getting bored with my recipes!

Thank you in advance! PS- If you are following this blog and not one of the authors feel free to comment with a recipe! I know you are out there...

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Joseph Fielding Smith

Was a vegetarian, and excelled at hand ball. Who knew?

I learned these tidbits at church on Sunday and thought I would pass them along in case you too have been told that a vegetarian diet is contradictory to the Word of Wisdom.

I certainly don't think it means that we all MUST be vegetarians as I know other prophets were not, but still. It's nice to know that at the very least it is not against the word of wisdom, or surely he wouldn't have chosen it.

Over and Out!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Oil Pulling

Have any of you ever tried oil pulling before? I've been doing it for the last month and it has been awesome. Some people say it makes their arthritis go away and makes their joints feel better and all sorts of crazy claims...I don't know about that, but here's how it has helped me:

I always get a bit of drainage in my head when I shower in the morning, but the first morning after I did it for the first time I got a TON of drainage and I could breathe through my nose for the first time in who knows how long, because I had no idea I was that congested.  If I have a sore throat, I do it and it goes away too. My teeth are whiter, and I don't have as much plaque.  My gums always bleed when I floss (ALWAYS, even when I am a super duper flosser) and after 3 days of oil pulling, no bleeding.

I use olive oil, but you can use any vegetable oil, and I put it in my mouth and swish it for 20 minutes while I am in the shower and getting ready for the day.  It only grossed me out for the first few minutes the first time I did it, and then I have been good.  Just thought I would share if anyone is interested!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Easy Go-To Soup

This is probably our quickest, easiest, cheapest, go-to yummy soup.

Savory Bean and Spinach Soup

1 (32oz) box of veggie broth
1 cup water
1 can (15 oz) tomato sauce
4 large carrots, sliced
1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can great northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 (1lb/16oz) bag frozen spinach
garlic powder, onion powder, basil and pepper to taste

Bring to boil. Simmer, covered, until carrots are cooked through.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Sweet Potato Drop Biscuits

You can buy 5 lb bags of sweet potatoes at a store in town for $0.49. Pretty sweet!

Here's a recipe we made with some sweet-potato-goodness last night:

Sweet Potato Drop Biscuits:

1 cup mashed sweet potatoes
3 tablespoons oil
1 tablespoon pure maple syrup (I substituted honey, it was fine)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1 cup whole wheat or whole grain flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, or pumpkin pie spice (I used cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves)
1/2 teaspoon salt (I thought it was too much!)
2-3 tablespoons cold water as needed

Preheat 400. Mix wet. Mix dry. Mix together (don't overdo it!). Add water if necessary 1 T at a time and gently knead until it holds together (should be pretty wet). Drop in spoonfuls and bake 12-15 min. (I found it took longer to bake).

We had this with VEG HEAD CHILI. Yumm!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Slow Cooker Mexican Minestrone

2 cans black beans, d and r
2 cans mexican style stewed tomatoes
28 oz. veg broth
1 can corn, drained
1 can chickpeas, drained
2 cups diced red skinned potatoes
2 cups frozen green beans
1 large carrot, sliced
1 cup salsa
cumin, chili powder, and pepper to taste



My friend made this for us when Truman was born. It's a new family favorite!


1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
3 tablespoons tahini
1 egg
2 tablespoons grated lemon zest
1 1/2 teaspoons cumin
1 clove minced garlic
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon coriander
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup flour (I use whole wheat, it works fine)
2 tablespoons chopped onion
2 tablespoons chopped parsley
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
olive oil

For Serving: Pita Bread, Lettuce, Tomato, Onion and Yogurt Sauce (recipe follows)

Pulse chickpeas in processor until mostly smooth but still chunky. Stir in remaining ingredients except olive oil. Form into patties, cook in oiled pan over med/high heat 3 minutes each side. Drain on towels if necessary. Serve in halved pitas with l,o,t, and sauce.

Yogurt Sauce: (I find we only need half of this recipe)

2 cups plain yogurt
3 tablespoons chopped cilantro
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons lemon zest
1 tablespoons cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste

mix together :)

We find this recipe totally crave-able. Love it.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Pineapple, Banana and coconut cream smoothie

I made this last night with agave and it was the bees knees!  Original recipe here

Pineapple Banana & Coconut Cream Smoothie
1 banana (previously frozen is ideal but not essential)
1 c pineapple (I used canned in juice, but fresh would be great)
1/2 c coconut milk (canned, fresh, cream of coconut, or coconut creme concentrate)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 c ice cubes
1/4 c sugar, optional or to taste (or honey, agave, sugar, stevia, vanilla NuNaturals stevia drops to taste)

Pumpkin, Kale and Black Bean Stew

  • I made this about 2 weeks ago and am just getting around to posting it.  It had such a unique flavor, it definitely fit the bill for the I'm-tired-of-making-the-same-old-thing blahs.  Jocelyn ate a whole bowl, and Cory, when asked if he liked it replied very neutrally, ate FOUR bowls. You heard me. Four.

I made a lot of changes.  Butternut Squash for Pumpkin. No meat.  Veggie broth, not beef.  No Sherry Vinegar or Sorrel. Super good.  And you can save the kale water for a future recipe.  Here is the original recipe. 

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 small sugar pumpkin, peeled, seeded, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 4 cups beef broth
  • 1 (16 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 bunch lacinato kale, stems removed, chopped
  • 1 pound cubed cooked ham
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced sorrel


  1. Heat olive oil over medium heat in a soup pot. Cook onion until it begins to soften, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and diced pumpkin and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir in the beef broth, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then turn heat to low and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes.
  2. While soup is simmering, bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the kale and simmer until softened, about 3 minutes. Drain into a colander.
  3. After soup has cooked for 15 minutes, add the kale, ham, and black beans; simmer for another 5 minutes. Stir in the sherry vinegar and sorrel; remove pot from the heat.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving  Calories: 203 | Total Fat: 11.8g | Cholesterol: 25mg

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I'm considering getting rid of our microwave. Please raise your hand if you think that's silly.