Tag Archives: vegetable

Slow Cooker Vegetable Soup

I feel kind of silly writing about soup when the temperatures are going to be in the 80s for a few days this week. Just a few days ago, however, it felt like winter. And, if the last few months are any indication of the weather patterns we will have this spring, I’m guessing that there are still plenty of chilly days to come. So, hang on to this recipe for a chilly day and bear with me!

I’ve been relying on my slow cooker quite a bit lately. I don’t have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen preparing dinner each afternoon, but I can usually get a solid 30 minutes of meal prep done during Madison’s morning nap. It’s just enough time for me to get dinner into the slow cooker. Plus, it feels good to have things taken care of early in the day (especially on those days when she chooses not to take an afternoon nap!).

This vegetable soup has become a new favorite at my house.  I think we’ve had it just about once a week since December. I’ve made a few different versions and perfected my recipe over time.  Sure, it’s fast and easy, but it also tastes great. I usually serve it with a loaf of freshly baked bread or a side salad. This recipe makes a pretty big batch (8 – 10 servings), which yields plenty of leftovers for the rest of the week! Continue Reading

California Veggie Wraps

I’m sure you all know the lovely Aimee from Simple Bites and Under the High Chair… And, if you don’t, you really should!  Today, a few of us are hosting a virtual baby shower to help her celebrate the her new baby girl on the way.

One of the things I enjoy about baby showers is the food… I’m sure that is no surprise to you.  There’s always so many fun and cute finger foods to sample.

When I got to thinking about what to make for Aimee’s virtual baby shower, I realized that I don’t make finger foods nearly enough.  So, today I am changing that! I thought about making some miniature sandwiches, but decided to make some wraps instead.  They’re easy to eat while you’re socializing with friends and family, and they’re tasty, too!

For my wraps, I decided to go with a healthy whole grain wrap packed with lots of veggies… That leaves plenty of room to snack on the adorable cupcakes and other sweets that are inevitable at a baby shower.  Plus, I think it’s always a good idea to have some healthy and meatless options at a shower to cater to any special diets of the shower guests.

Of course, these wraps are very adaptable… You can substitute the veggies you like best (and you could even add some grilled chicken or turkey, as well).  I picked a few of my favorites that remind me of a California veggie wrap that I used to order at a sandwich shop near my office.  The original sandwich shop version was loaded with ranch dressing, as well, but I opted to leave that out. It would be fabulous as a dipping sauce on the side, though, if you feel so inclined!

After you sample my California veggie wraps, be sure to check out all of the other great party food for Aimee’s virtual baby shower!

And, be sure to stop by and wish Aimee all the best! Continue Reading

Friday Favorites – Episode 85

This week has been a crazy one! I’m writing this post early (on Wednesday) since I’m headed to New York City on Thursday and Friday. I’ve been getting ready for my trip, trying to get some work done, and also doggy sitting for my parents this week.  Needless to say, my house has been a bit like living in a circus… But, a fun circus!

The Posts…

There were lots of great posts that I have come across this week… Though I often tend to share a lot of dessert posts, I’ve been cutting back on the amount of baking I’ve been doing in an effort to curb the amount of sugar that my hubby and I eat. We still enjoy treats from time to time, but not as many as before! I think that new mindset has influenced my picks for this week’s Friday Favorites, too…

  • I’m just loving this Vegetable Confetti Soup from Two Peas and Their Pod… It looks healthy and hearty, and it’s really adaptable to whatever you can find at the farmer’s market or your local store. Bookmark this one for a cold, rainy day.
  • As much as I love to bake and decorate cakes and cookies, if I have to choose a favorite dessert, it’s probably brownies. I just love the rich, chocolatey goodness of brownies.  So, it’s no surprise that I can’t wait to make these Brownie Cookies from The Purple Foodie. Don’t they look amazing?
  • Peppermint patties are one of my favorite candies. I have attempted to make them a few times in the past, but just ended up with a big sticky mess.  I’m willing to give them another try, though, and I’ll definitely be trying these Peppermint Patties from I Am Baker.
  • I don’t really cook a whole lot of meat, but I must admit that I really do enjoy a nice steak from time to time. Instead of heading to the steakhouse, I think I’ll have to give these Dry Aged Steaks from Evil Shenanigans a try.  I had no idea that they could be dry aged at home!

The Playlist…

Have I ever mentioned that I’m a big Beatles fan? It’s true.  Naturally, I’m also a pretty big John Lennon fan, as well.

Since I’ll be spending time in New York City this week (and I’m probably in New York as you’re reading this), I thought it was appropriate that my pick for this week’s song to add to the kitchen playlist be New York City by John Lennon.

The Pantry…

As I mentioned above, we’ve been trying to eat a bit healthier around here lately.  We’ve been cutting back on sweets and baked goods, and we’ve also been enjoying our share of salads.  It’s a great time of year to get back into eating salads, especially since the farmers markets will soon be full of fresh, local produce to make those salads even more flavorful and exciting!

I’ve been learning to make salads more interesting (who wants a giant plate of lettuce?), and one of my current favorites is a salad with blue cheese, walnuts, and cranberries. You can’t go wrong with some raspberry pomegranate vinaigrette, either.

Here are a few other salad recipes you might enjoy…

Friday Favorites – Episode 26

I’m getting a late start on my Friday Favorites this week!  Usually I try to pick my favorites and write my blog post on Thursday evening.  I’m not a last-minute person! I was always the obnoxious kid in school who started researching a term paper the day it was assigned and had it written with a week to spare.

Last evening, I was busy writing my photography post and I never got around to writing my Friday Favorites.  I intended to write my post this afternoon, but I ended up spending the whole afternoon shopping.  That would be OK, except that it was one of those shopping trips where I couldn’t find anything I was looking for and just wandered aimlessly all afternoon.  What a waste of an afternoon!

So, now I’m writing on Friday evening, trying to make sure that my Friday Favorites don’t turn into Saturday Favorites!  Fortunately, there were lots of great blog posts to choose from this week.  Even though it’s getting late, I’m getting hungry just thinking about all of these dishes. I am adding all four of these recipes to my must-make list!

  • I think this Tuscan Vegetable Soup with Grilled Cheddar Chicken Sandwiches from Simply Scrumptious sounds like a perfect fall meal! I plan on giving this a try and using fresh herbs from my garden in the soup.  Just remember that if you substitute fresh herbs for dried herbs you need to up the quantity a bit!
  • When I read about these Juicy Turkey Burgers from Soup Belly, I was reminded that I haven’t made turkey burgers in quite a while.  I love turkey burgers, so I’m not sure why I haven’t made them.  I guess I just needed a reminder!  I plan on making these burgers sometime this week.  They sound simple and delicious!
  • This Bow Tie Pasta with Italian Sausage from The Food Addicts is another simple and easy dish that sounds perfect for cooler weather!  I would love to curl up with a bowl of this pasta on a cool fall evening.  I might lighten this dish up a bit by using Italian turkey sausage.
  • What would my Friday Favorites be without dessert?  If you’re a chocolate lover (or even if you’re not) you have to check out these Triple Chocolate Chunk Brownies from Taste As You Go.  I think I just might have to order some of the Scharffen Berger chocolate to make these.  I wonder if they ship overnight?