Sunday, April 29, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/29/12

Good evening everyone!  I'm a bit late on this post but better late than never!  I try to get the weekly menu posts up on Fridays so you can see what we're having before the week actually starts.  This way, you can use some of these recipes in your menu for the week if you so choose.  However, I have not been feeling the greatest and this week we tried something new.  My husband and I spent all afternoon cooking so we could have the majority of our food for the week finished and we will only have to make a few things spread throughout the week instead of having to make a full dinner every night.  It worked really well!  We were able to get a lot accomplished and now we have dinners plus lunches for the first few days of the week.  This is especially helpful for the lunch situation because lunches need to be quick around here and because my husband has been trying to pack his food more often.  There aren't any restaurants where you can get real food let alone gluten free, dairy free or meat free where my husband works.....or around where we live for that matter.  So it's best that he pack if he wants to eat healthy and it's better on the wallet ~easier said than done though!  I'm really excited about this menu because we have some new items I've really been wanting to try!

Menu for the week of April 29, 2012:

1.  Soup beans and cornbread.  My husband requested this one.  I've never used ham in my soup beans as is common.  We didn't really like ham even when we ate meat and now, well, we don't eat meat so I still don't use it!  Tastes great just the same!

2.  Gluten Free Vegan GORDITAS!!!!!!!!  Seriously!  It's supposed to be chickpea flatbread pizza but I made them last week, and as pizza they were quite delicious, but I folded mine like a traditional taco and I was in gordita heaven!  I cannot tell you how exciting this is because when I used to eat standard American style, I used to eat some serious Taco Bell and I have been craving it this pregnancy.  Obviously, I can't have Taco Bell but this is so much better!  All the deliciousness without the sickness!  Amazing, you must try it! She's not kidding when she says you have to really cook the dough though! I am also making a raw sour cream to go with these.  I have a raw food book that has a recipe for sour cream using cucumbers and sunflower seeds that I'm pretty stoked about.  I also need the sour cream for another recipe this week so win-win!  Here's a recipe that uses cashews if you'd like to try and make something as well.

I took this picture after I had already taken a few bites and realized how delish it was!

3.  Quinoa Salad Sandwiches.  I am so very excited about this recipe as well!  I loved chicken salad growing up and we no longer eat such things.  Normally, this is not a problem.  Not in the least.  Pregnant....big problem!  I want so many foods that I can't have and I'll never understand why pregnancy does that to you but I am so thankful for recipes like this!  I hope it's as delicious as it looks because I plan on this recipe getting me through a lot of barbecues this summer!  ;-) I will use the sour cream I mentioned earlier for the dairy sour in this recipe and vegan non-gmo mayo for the miracle whip. We haven't yet decided if we are going to make bread or just wrap it up in lettuce, probably the lettuce. 

4.  Penne with Artichokes.  Easy.  I like easy.  This is actually one of the recipes that is already complete and yes, it was good!  I nixed the parmesan and used g-free penne.

5.  Roasted Corn and Potato Chowder.  As soon as I saw the picture of this gorgeous soup on Pinterest, I had to give it a try!  We made this soup already as well and it is just as delicious as it looks if not more!  Of course, I could have made some kind of bread to go with it but I decided I was too tired and it worked out.  This is a very filling soup and the bread isn't necessary.  A lot of people have problems with corn because it can be difficult to digest if your intestines are inflamed and unless you get certified organic, it's also genetically modified and chemical laden.  We used to have a problem with corn but as our guts have healed and we've extracted most of the toxins from our bodies, we are able to have organic/non-gmo corn!  Which is wonderful because this soup is insane and I do love popcorn as well! ;-)  ~Oh, I almost forgot to tell you that I subbed coconut cream for the half and half and used unsweetened almond milk for the milk.  Worked great! 

6.  Baked Vegetarian Spring Rolls.  I love Chinese take-out but I can't have it so 'nuff said about this choice!  I am using the linked recipe but substituting rice wraps and playing with the filling a bit. 

7.  Waffles.  Sigh.  This is probably no surprise.  It seems we eat waffles or pancakes at least once a week for dinner but my family loves them and they always ask for them.  I shall oblige yet again. 

Have a great week!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/22/12

Hi!  It's menu time!  But first, my goofy cuties would like to say hi....

Every Sunday morning my husband attempts to take pictures of the kids while I get ready.  Usually, I'm lucky if nobody gets hurt and everyone's shoes and clothes stay on!  Though, it looks like my daughter ditched the shoes for this pic! lol  However, once in a while, he gets a cute one!  This is one of my favorites!

Food, yes?

Menu for the week of April 22, 2012:

1. Carrot/Beet/Bean Burgers.  The grocery store did not have any usable beets last week and I refuse to pay full price for beets with completely wilted greens.  I asked two different stores and two different managers if they would discount the beets because I couldn't use the greens (most people don't realize you use the greens also) and they wouldn't do it!  I was not happy nor was I about to pay full price for half-usable beets!  Outrage!  We will try again this week.

2.  Lemon Garlic Pasta.  Looks easy and delicious, I'm sold!  I'll either omit the parmesan altogether or make a quick vegan version. 

3.  Salads with tahini dressing!

4.  Very Berry Millet Pancakes.  You know our love of having breakfast for dinner! We typically have juice/smoothies for breakfast around here these days so dinner is the only time we get to have pancakes and such!  Yum!  She uses blackberries in this recipe and I think that sounds amazing so I hope they are on sale this week! 

Another favorite pancake recipe with roasted red-skins.

5.  Zucchini Black Bean and Rice Skillet.  I have to modify this recipe from a few not so great ingredients to some better choices but it looks really easy and tasty nonetheless.  I'll nix the cheese, use brown rice or quinoa instead of white rice and canola oil is genetically modified so unless I'm sure it's non-gmo and organic.....I'm not using it! 

6.  Cheezy Mushrooms and 'Rice.'  This is a raw recipe and the rice is actually jicama!  Fun! 

7.  Roasted Grape, Goat Cheese and Honey Stuffed Sweet Potatoes.  I'll probably wedge some for my daughter because she is picky about her sweet potatoes.  I don't know yet what I'll serve with these, we'll see what we have at the time ~I'm living on the edge!   

Have a great weekend!

Friday, April 13, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/15/2012

Hi there!  As I am typing this, it's Wednesday.  It's been and will continue to be a rather busy week and I am trying to get everything in order for our weekly menu as well as for some future freezer cooking I'll be doing later in the pregnancy.  I love to freeze waffles, pancakes, energy bites, muffins, chilis, soups, and the occasional casserole.  Mostly though, we prefer to eat our food fresh and not everything we eat can even be frozen.  The only time this is a bummer is when it's time to have another baby and I need already made meals that I can easily throw in the oven or thaw and eat.  I have a good list of things that can be frozen for after the baby gets here but certain things, gluten free lasagna for instance, are going to be trial and error in the freezer department.  Gluten free pasta and breads can get mushy and gross if you're not careful and there is a fine line between undercooking and overcooking when it comes to gluten free freezer meals.  My plan is to have a trial freezer cooking run way before the baby so I can get some of the recipes in the freezer that I've never actually frozen before and see if they will be ok.  Bonus, I'll be tired and cranky in the third trimester heat anyway so I'll be more than happy to have a few freezer eats even before the baby arrives!  Anyway....I decided it would be a good time to make the menu for next week since I won't have time this weekend and I'll have to shop differently.  I'm DONE with recipes in any way, shape or form for the day.  My head is spinning but again, at least it's finished!

Menu for the week of April 15, 2012:

1. Carrot-Beet Bean Burgers and sweet potato fries.  If I don't feel like doing the fries when it comes time, I'll just bake the potatoes instead. 

2.  Mushroom Pizza Bites and salad.

3.  Chili.  The chili we had for Easter was insane!  We must have more, must!

4.  Pumpkin-Quinoa Breakfast Bake and......wait for it......asparagus!  I heart asparagus and so does my family so we've been eating it a lot!

5.  Sombrero Pasta Salad.  I'll make my own dressing, add cilantro and use lentils or walnut taco meat in place of ground beef.  Obviously, I will also subsitute gluten free pasta. 

6.  Collard Wraps and Chia Chili Cheese Dip ~it's been toooooo long!  YUM!

7.  Megan's Falafel's 

Hopefully, all will be well with our dinners this week and yours as well!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Dairy Free Chocolate-Peanut Butter Milkshake

Yes!  The ultimate chocolate milkshake!  Now don't worry, if you're allergic to peanuts you can just use any nut butter, coconut butter or omit the peanut butter altogether.  The BEST part about this milkshake is, it's healthy!  You could have it for breakfast if you want!  (Don't mind if I do!) 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Milkshake!
3 cups vanilla almond milk (or other non-dairy milk of choice)
2 heaping cups frozen cherries
2 giant handfuls baby spinach
1/2 avocado
3-4 Tbs raw cacao powder (use cocoa powder if you don't have cacao but you may need more)
1 spoonful peanut butter, other nut butter or coconut butter (coconut butter would be amazing!)
*Optional:  handful of dairy free chocolate chips

*Just add all ingredients to your blender and blend until smooth and creamy!!!
Note:  If you do not have vanilla flavored milk, you may need to add a small amount of honey, agave nectar or maple syrup.

This shake is so simple and sooooooo delicious!  Have you ever had Texas Gold Chocolate Peanut Butter ice cream?  Or maybe Homemade Peanut Butter N Chip?  This milkshake tastes like a milkshake we used to make with those flavors when I was a kid!  The ingredients are much better though! ;-)  It's truly amazing and you'd never know it contains spinach or avocado!  The avocado makes it especially creamy.  Without it, the shake will be somewhat watery due to the cherries.  My husband and kids love it!  My husband actually likes it better than our previous favorite, Chocolate Banana Smoothie!  If you are having this shake as a meal, it will serve 3 adults or 2 adults and 2 children.  If this is dessert for you, you could probably get 6 servings out of it.  Let us know what you think!  Have a great day!  

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/8/12

It's that time again ~weekly menu day!  I don't have a lot of new recipes in the menu this week.  As I was making our menu and as I am typing this, I'm tired.  I don't see myself gaining a lot of energy between now and when it is time to actually make these meals so I wanted a lot of easy.  If I do find myself with lots of energy, then I shall use it up doing something other than cooking ~yoga!  Hooray!

Menu for the week of April 8, 2012:

1. Chili leftovers.  (If that's not easy, I don't know what is!)

2.  Red quinoa and avocado salad 

3.  Roasted Veggies and waffles.  These waffles are our favorite.  We use a flax or chia egg and it makes about 16 waffles so I have some leftover to freeze for future breakfasts. 

4.  Pasta Bravo ~recipe located in my 'recipes' tab.

5.  Amazing Gluten Free Vegan Pizza.  I'm constantly surprised by the variety of gluten free/dairy free pizzas people have created.  The same goes for mac and cheese.  There are so many different recipes that I never feel like we are eating the same thing over again and they all look so good that I need to try them!  This one is particularly interesting because it has a vegan cheese sauce and some unusual toppings ~mushrooms, corn, onion ~that sound really delicious!

6.  Creamy Potato Onion Soup.  I'm cold.  I don't get it?  I'm pregnant which should equate to roasting all the time but I have not been able to get warm at all.  I have always had questionable circulation and I think that could be some of it but still, I want cold weather comfort foods so soup it is!  I'll also have some glazed carrots and probably broccoli or whatever we haven't used by this particular day.

7.  Cranberry Avocado Salad with Candied Nuts and Balsamic Vinaigrette.  Actually, I'll use whatever dressing I have on hand which will probably be a homemade Italian or some lemon juice and sea salt.  This salad is super yummy and surprisingly filling so we're excited to eat it again.  My kids will eat the individual ingredients ~avocado, cranberries, candied nuts, sliced pepper, carrots and I might make them some chickpea flatbread.  Ok, I will make them some chickpea flatbread.  They eat more than any adult I know!  ;-)

Super simple and equally delicious!  Have a marvelous week!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Easter Dinner

Hello all!  I wanted to share with you what we will be having to eat on Easter Sunday.  When I was growing up we usually had canned green beans with ham, cooked until absolutely zero nutrients remain just like a good southern chef would do! ;-)  We would also have a honeybaked ham (my mom used to bake hers with Pepsi), fried chicken strips, mashed potatoes with margarine (because apparently butter is bad for you?)and gravy, starchy dinner rolls, 7 layer salad with lots of mayo and cheese, canned corn and an entire table full of desserts people would bring to share with everyone.  I'm not gonna lie ~the food was good.  We all always looked forward to it.  Pretty standard American stuff ~you know...lots of fake food, gmo's, lack of nutrients, refined flour and sugar and a big food coma to follow.  Looking back, I cannot believe we ate all of that and actually looked forward to it!  Of course, the company is always fun but the food HAD to change!  We have been on such a wonderful journey to health and I wouldn't trade it for anything.  Though we seem 'weird' to the 'Standard American Diet' folk, we couldn't be happier!  My husband and I love that all of our food is satiating and delicious and never leaves us feeling like we need to unbutton our pants (you know what I'm talking about!), take a massive nap or a pain killer for the sugar headache.  Our diet is most certainly not perfect but we do try and it pays off pretty big!  All of our holiday food is still indulgent but it's real, organic, non-gmo, gluten free, dairy free, egg free and meat free, did I mention delicious?!  We love it and whatever journey you are taking with your health, we hope that some of these ideas and the support will help you along the way!  Real food is the best food!  On to the menu!!!

Ooey gooey cinnamon rolls! (the frosting does contain powdered sugar if you use it)

All of the food for Resurrection Sunday was requested by my husband.  It's not exactly 'traditional' according to the usual springy and traditional type fare I listed above but it's what he said he wanted so I shall oblige! 

Breakfast:  Cinnamon Rolls with Spiced Buttercream.  I will be using a few different recipes to accomplish these rolls.  The picture above is from this recipe and I love the filling, the cloves taste amazing!  However, I wanted to try a different dough this time and settled on this recipe to which I shall add a chia egg.  The frosting is my favorite of all time and I will be using powdered sugar but I will use organic so as to avoid genetically modified ingredients and chemicals.  I am going to try powdering my own sugar sometime soon though, I think it would be fairly easy and then I can use sucanat or coconut sugar.  The sugar in the actual rolls will be replaced with coconut sugar.   I will also steam some asparagus because I want some kind of veggie in the morning and asparagus with cinnamon rolls has that whole sweet salty thing going on!  Love!  I'll pre-make the rolls on Saturday using this method and refrigerate the frosting for the next day.  Otherwise, we'll never have breakfast!  The idea of getting up early enough on any Sunday morning to actually make breakfast and get everyone ready is truly laughable!

Lunch/Dinner:  I don't know about you, but in our family....holidays are always busy.  After church we will have a visit with my husband's family and then come home before the massive overtired meltdown happens and try to get the kids into bed for naps.  After this major accomplishment, which is a major accomplishment, my husband and I will eat and lunch/dinner sort of runs together.  We've been married for 6 years and parents for 3.  I used to attempt breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.  This left us with way too much food and me stressed and too busy in the kitchen to enjoy anything.  Now, we usually have a special breakfast plus one large, complete meal.  If we are traveling to multiple locations or if we will end up needing more food, I will plan accordingly but this Sunday, our lunch/dinner will be more than enough!  At my husband's request, we will be having a nice, hearty chili.  He loooooooves chili, we also had chili for Christmas this past year so I can't say I'm surprised that this is what he wanted for Easter as well ~ though I will have to put my foot down for the Fourth of July because July is just not chili weather! ;-)  We will also be having cheesy garlic breadsticks and salads.  We have actually had the cauliflower pizza crust before but this one seems a little better for using flax or chia eggs and I think the texture will be great!  I would like to use raw goat cheddar as the cheese but depending on my daughter, I may have to use daiya.  She is the only one of us who is still sometimes sensitive to goat cheese and I'll be sure to muscle test her with it first.  Remember the naps I mentioned earlier?  My kids will have eaten some snack type foods beforehand ~usually leftovers from previous dinners, hummus, veggies, almond butter, etc.  After naps, they'll enjoy the food listed above.   Being pregnant, I need some extra fat in my diet so I will also have avocado with my chili as will my growing kids!  Yum!
This salad has tahini dressing but we'll probably use homemade Italian this weekend.

Well, I hope you have a wonderful weekend and you are able to find some fabulous food that won't hurt you! 

"Early on Sunday morning, as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to see the tomb.  Suddenly there was a great earthquake, because an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and rolled aside the stone and sat on it.  His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow.  The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint.
Then the angel spoke to the women, "Don't be afraid!" he said.  "I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified.  He isn't here!  He has been raised from the dead, just as he said would happen.  Come, see where his body was lying.  And now, go quickly and tell his disciples he has been raised from the dead, and he is going ahead of you to Galilee.  You will see him there.  Remember, I have told you." (Mathew 28 1-7 NLV)

"Jesus came and told his disciples, "I have been given complete authority in heaven and on earth.  Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.  Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you.  And be sure of this:  I am with you always, even to the end of the age."  (Mathew 28 16-20 NLV)

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Cheezy Alfredo Sauce (vegan/gluten free)

Good morning!  I mentioned in my last post that I made one of my favorite alfredo sauces for dinner but changed the recipe quite a bit.  It was hard to figure out what to call this sauce, it's not cheesy and it's not quite alfredo but it's so delicious that I have to share!  It can be really hard when you are gluten free and dairy free to find a really good, creamy pasta sauce.  I am certainly not a chef by any means, but I do want to help other mamas or anyone with food allergies or even those just choosing to go gluten or dairy free for health.  We need to stick together in this world of processed and instant 'foods.'  Let's feed our families healthy and fabulous food that won't hurt them!  This recipe does have cashews so it is not nut free.  It is gluten, dairy, egg, meat, corn, and soy free!  I hope you love it!

I baked our sauce with partially cooked brown rice-spinach spaghetti and topped with bread crumbs.

Cheezy Alfredo Pasta Sauce

8oz of desired gluten free pasta
Optional: 1/4 to 1/2 cup crumbed pecans mixed with dried Italian herbs
1 Cup non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)
1/3 heaping cup raw cashews
4 Tbs nutritional yeast
1 small to medium garlic clove
juice from half a lemon
1 Tbs tahini (sesame seed butter)
***2 tsp chickpea miso (I use South River Miso.  They do use barley in one of their misos but they are very careful and we have never had a reaction from their miso even at our most sensitive but use your own judgement)
1 tsp tumeric powder
3/4 tsp pink Himalayan salt (or good quality sea salt)
1/2 tsp paprika

Directions:  Cook pasta according to package directions.  If baking pasta as in the picture above, undercook by 3-5 minutes and pre-heat oven to 350.  Mix all ingredients for sauce together in blender until smooth.  Pour over pasta and heat on stove until desired thickness and temperature ~maybe 5 minutes.  If baking, place pasta in 8x8 casserole dish and pour sauce over pasta.  It will look watery but the pasta will continue to cook and absorb the sauce which will also thicken quite a bit.  Optional:  Add gluten free bread crumbs or crumbed pecans and herbs to the top of pasta/sauce mixture.  Place in pre-heated oven for 25 minutes or until pasta is done and sauce is thick and creamy! 

For optional crumb topping:  Crumb or finely chop pecans and mix with dried Italian seasoning.  Add to top of pasta dish prior to baking.  You could also use pre or homemade gluten free bread crumbs.


Monday, April 2, 2012

Weekly Menu 4/1/2012 and Fun Kid Lunches!

Good afternoon to you all!  I can't believe it's April already but I'm loving it!  More warm weather lies ahead and that makes me happy!  We have been blessed to have my husband work from home on Fridays since the gas prices have been so lovely.  He loves working from home because it saves him the commute and he gets more work finished than at the office.  We love having him because, well, we love him!  So, he is able to take a few breaks in the day and the last two weeks we have done our grocery shopping on Friday afternoons!  This is really exciting for me because I don't have to do it alone while pregnant and toting the other two tots plus it's more fun!  Having our shopping done Friday made me even happier this week because I was particularly excited about the recipes on our menu!  So excited, in fact, that I have already made 3 of the dinners on our menu!  ~Thank goodness for leftovers too because it is only Monday! 

You may have just read that and thought, 'What?  I thought she was still hating food?'  Yes.  That is a very interesting story!  I will share it in another post but I am feeling better!  On to our menu for this week and some fun kid lunches as well! 

Menu for the week of April 1, 2012:

1.  Quinoa Stuffed Roasted Green Peppers.  I am making these tonight except I am doubling the recipe and using a mixture of red and yellow peppers because the grocery store didn't have organic green ones.  I am also subbing lentils for the edamame in the recipe.  We don't eat soy if we can help it and I already have lentils on hand. 

2.  Roasted vegetables and avocado with sea salt.  Sometimes the most delicious of recipes are the most simple!  I forget this all the time and I am glad that this picture popped up on Pinterest because I was looking for a few easy recipes this week.  I also had some of the veggies left from last week that needed to be used.  The veggies are zucchini, white potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, tomatoes and garlic. 

3.  Artichoke Spinach Pizza!!!  I have actually already made this one, I just couldn't wait!  My husband and I made it after the kids went to bed Friday night and it was splendid!  We couldn't get enough and I'll probably make it again later this week!  It was super easy too!  I took the recipe linked above and created a vegan/gluten free spin.  I used this Roasted Artichoke and Garlic Spread for the base sauce, which really made the pizza!  I followed the recipe but added a bit of olive oil to make it more sauce-like and spreadable.  Delicious!  Then I added a good swirl of Muir Glen mushroom marinara over the artichoke spread.  We then added spinach and sliced black olives.  We, of course, used our favorite pizza crust recipe and just let it rise a little before baking.  (I actually have a trick or two up my sleeve to make this crust even more spectacular....stay tuned, I hope it works!) 

Fresh from the oven!  This pizza was so good and so satisfying!!!

4.  Fettuccine Alfredo with Shitake Mushrooms, Sundried Tomatoes, and Kale.  This recipe is vegan and looks so good but I didn't realize how labor instensive it was when I added it to the list.  Yeah, I'm not so much into boiling almonds and peeling them.  So, I just adapted one of my favorite alfredo sauces to fit what flavors I was craving at the time.  (made it last night)  It turned out wonderful!  My husband even ate two giant bowls!  I'll share the recipe later because it is quite an adaptation.  I ended up leaving out the extra veggies but you could still add them if you like.  I might still make the original recipe this weekend but I we'll see.

5.  Holiday Soup for the Soul.  It was cold and rainy Saturday night so I made this soup at my husband's request.  It was really easy and delicious!  It also made a lot of soup and tasted better the next day!  He took some for lunch today as well.  I increased the quinoa to one cup, added a carrot, and used regular organic vegetable broth because I didn't have boullion.  Next time, we'll add some potato and more carrot!  We like lots of veggies in our soup! 

6.  Whatever's in the Fridge Skillet.  This one's my favorite!  I have everything to make this or at least some easy substitutions and it's quick in addition to being healthy ~love! 

7.  Baked Sweet Potatoes and salad.  Easy.  Delicious.  Enough said. 

As far as snacks and desserts and such....I made these crackers which were great with the hummus I whipped up.  The night we had pizza, we also made these cookies and they were yummy!  (and simple!)  I made a loaf of Teff Sandwich Bread for the kids to have this week as well.  It didn't turn out as soft and sandwich-like as I had hoped but it was good and has served it's purpose.   

This is not the best picture but I've been really into fun food for the kids recently!  You can see the sandwich I made for my daughter on the left.  What you can't see is the 'G' I cut into it with a cookie cutter.  It was G week and her name begins with G as well.  The kids spent Saturday with their grandparents so my husband and I could get some serious cleaning and organizing accomplished.  I wanted them to have cute, fun lunches to eat.  My daughter has been picky the last few months about her food and I thought doing stuff like this might help.  So far, so good!  It's also been more fun for me to make the lunches and doesn't take any more time than usual, especially since she actually eats it so the time I used to spend fighting with her over taking one more bite is no more!  In addition to the G sandwich, peanut butter and organic grape jelly, her lunch contains sliced black olives ( a special treat), carrot sticks, red peppers, hummus (in the square container), peas (half moon container), and one of the cookies I mentioned earlier.  Not pictured are frozen blueberries and a mandarin orange.  Here is a link to the lunch box I use for my daughter.  I really like it because it has all of those compartments which keep her from being exposed to cross contamination when we go out.  She can just eat out of her lunch container instead of putting her food on the table that may or may not have gluten crumbs.  Eek.  I don't like that it's so big and awkward because it's difficult to tote around.  She loves it though and it makes picnics ~her favorite thing ever~ a breeze!  Here is a picture of the lunch she had yesterday,

Clearly, this lunch was not super elaborate but having the little muffin cups made her happy and it looks cuter this way!  She had peas, carrots, red peppers, salted raw cashews and organic raisins.  Peppers, peas and carrots are some of her faves and they are easy on the go as well!  My son's lunches were less interesting because he is still young and eats everything but I did cut his sandwich into circles for him.  This week, our letter is 'H' and we had our first fun lunch this afternoon!

This was my daughter's 'H' lunch today.  I put her peas in a heart shaped cookie cutter, which was the talk of the table.  She had hummus, a slice of bread with almond butter and honey and the Big H little h made of carrots and yellow bell peppers.  Not pictured is half a banana.

She had to eat her lunch with her hat!
You see what I mean about my son's lunches, he usually has them gone before I can even do anything 'fun' with them!  haha

Just wanted to share a few of the things we have been doing to make food more fun!  Have a great day!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

12 Days of Easter

Today marks the 12th day until Easter!  Don't get me wrong....I love bunnies and flowers and spring as much as the next person but Easter is not about spring or bunnies or flowers or eggs or cute little dresses, suits and baskets full of goodies.  Easter is about Jesus rising from the dead just as He said He would!  Becoming a mom made me realize just how important traditions like this can be and how easy a child's mind is influenced.  I've been searching for things we can do to make Easter more about the resurrection than about spring and pinterest has definitely been helpful with that!  This is the first year my daughter is really into anything more than a quick story or color sheet so I needed something more than we have done previously.  (she's 3)  I really love the ideas this mom has for teaching her children about Resurrection Sunday and we're going to be lightly adapting this for our little family!  I'm very excited! 

Basically, she has twelve different stories and little activities or figures that go along with each day until Resurrection Sunday.  It's very similar to an advent calendar before Christmas and that's part of why I liked this idea!  Our kids did great with the advent calendar and scripture reading for Christmas this past year and I think they'll be really into this as well!  I am taking the idea of the 'Easter basket' and using that for our daily trinkets and such that the kids will have to discover.  I have a small basket that I will hide with each day's activity/trinket/toy/book etc. and they will have to find it.  We'll talk about the items they have found and have our corresponding Bible lesson.  I've been able to go through the house and adapt the original ideas so I don't have to buy anything this year.  We may have a few songs and some videos as well.  My kids thoroughly enjoy a good song and dance session!  We do tons of baking around here already so I'm not worried in the least about them getting the whole cookie/candy experience that goes along with most holidays.  They won't be missing anything!  We don't eat eggs though so I'm not into the whole eggdying-egg hiding-egg-stravaganza.  We also try our best to limit plastics in the house so for that reason combined with us being egg free peeps, we won't be using plastic eggs either.  There is one section on the blog where she suggests using a plastic egg as a representation of the empty tomb which is a good idea but I'm just going to leave the basket empty and make them find it still.  I may leave some toilet paper or cloth strips to symbolize Jesus having been there at one point but that He is no longer there.  I don't know, we'll see.  Anyhow, I wanted to share with you the things we have decided to make a tradition for our family starting this year and I hope you find some things to use for your family traditions as well.  Here is our first day in the countdown to Easter:

Monday, March 26, 2012

Weekly Menu 3/25/12

Well, hello again!  I am a bit late in getting a weekly menu....or as it has been known around here for the last couple of weeks, 'great ideas for food that never actually get made!'  Sigh.  I am just not hungry.  That's pretty much it.  On top of not really being hungry, there are lots of foods that are turning me off right now.  Big announcement:  We're having another little BOY!  We're very excited to welcome another little man around here.  Though, I can truly say now that being pregnant with boys is much harder than being pregnant with girls.  I had a great experience with my daughter, after the first trimester of course.  My first son was a different story.  I was sick in more ways than one because I had not yet discovered the whole Celiac Disease thing but still, I was not into food and so many things made me sick the entire time!  This little guy seems to be doing the same thing.  I'll be 17 weeks this week and I am not feeling the second trimester buzz.  I suppose there's still hope but at least I know our little man is healthy and I'll be loving food again as soon as he's born if nothing else! ;-)  It does make finding things to eat a bit difficult though.  I'll plan everything out and, at the time, it sounds delicious.  As soon as I get the groceries home and try making gag!  I've forced myself to eat way too many things recently in order to not waste food but NO MORE I TELL YOU!  I can't stand it.  The more I force myself to eat, the worse it gets.  For now, I'll still plan things out but probably less than 7 meals that way I have room for those spur of the moment things I actually do feel like eating.  That all being is the dealio for this week:

Menu for the week of March 25, 2012:

Zucchini-carrot pancakes and roasted red-skin potatoes.  You will probably notice that these were on last week's menu.  That's because I never made them.  Most of the things if not all that we are eating this week will be from last week or the week before.  I realize that's kinda boring for you folks but I'm doing what I can.  We did actually make these tonight and they were delicious!  The kids loved them and it was a great way to sneak in some veggies.  We never have leftover pancakes around here unless I make a second batch specifically to freeze but the recipe does say she freezes leftovers successfully.  That is always good info in my book.

Black Bean Beet Burgers

Quinoa Stuffed Artichokes

Lentil Meatballs

Macaroni Bake and Garlic Bread  (this bread is wonderful, I'll slice and put garlicky fixins on it before putting under the broiler for garlic toast) ~This is one I'll make out of the leftover sauce from the experimental pizza rolls I mentioned last week.  They were ok.  My son loved them but my daughter didn't like the Italian seasoning I added to the bread so she wouldn't eat it.  My husband and I ate them but both agreed that the other pizza items we've made were much better.  The calzones would make great pizza sticks as well as pizza pockets in fun shapes for the kids so we'll stick with that.  The dough also freezes well so I usually cut a few extra in the shape of a heart for my daughter and then freeze them unbaked.  We bake them at 350 for about ten minutes when we're ready to eat them. (they're small)  It's something even grandma can come over and put in the oven for them and they'll actually eat it.  Plus, pizza in fun shapes!
With added toppings after baking!

In other news, we made a wonderful cheezecake last night!  It was pretty incredible!  I didn't add the blueberry topping because I'm lazy but it was delicious without and delicious with dairy free chocolate chips added!  This was actually my first attempt at eating vegan soy free cheesecake as well as making will NOT be my last!  We halved the recipe and froze three little individual cakes to eat throughout the week.  So adorable!

Right out of the freezer and...
onto my plate!!!  (I added some chocolate chips after the photo)

À bientôt! 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Weekly Menu 3/18/2012

Happy St. Patrick's Day!  We started our morning introducing the kids to some traditional Irish music, watched the Veggie Tales video for St. Patrick's Day, colored shamrocks and talked about it's three leaves representing the Holy Trinity!  It was fun!  I felt like we needed something special for breakfast so I whipped up some cinnamon rolls!!!  It's quite exciting to say 'whipped up' when referring to anything made from scratch without gluten, eggs or dairy!  Usually, those recipes take quite some time and this one really was quite simple.  They were also fantabulous which means they will go in our permanent recipe file.  The only complaint I have....they have more of a biscuit texture than a smooth bread texture but the taste was amazing and they were much easier than other from scratch gluten free cinnamon roll recipes so it's all good! 

Glorious cinnamon-caramel deliciousness!  I subbed coconut sugar for granulated and sorghum glour for sweet rice in the recipe.  These rolls also call for cloves which were an amazing addition!  They tasted and smelled so!

The flash made them look orange but they baked up much better than our last cinnamon roll attempt!

This is my favorite picture!  The kids were patiently waiting there cinnamon treats.  This is after I frosted them with some homemade vegan buttercream!  YUM! I had intentions of dying the frosting green but decided against it.  My little girl kept coming in the kitchen and asking if the 'rollers' were done yet!  So cute!

On to the menu for this week.....I'm feeling not so lovely in the food department again.  It was never really stellar as far as eats go but it was getting better.  Weeks 12 and 13 were pretty good but 14 was terrible and so far, 15 isn't treating me so hot either.  I did make most of the things on last week's list but I didn't make any extra snacks and a couple of the meals were replaced with fend-for-yourself fare.  The Tahini Soup from last week was the weirdest soup I have ever had in my life.  I'll not make it again.  Tahini belongs in dressings and sauces but definitely not soup!  It wasn't gross, just odd.  I did make some cheesy chickpea crackers to go with the soup though.  They were a big hit, tasted a lot like cheez-its.  This week, I have a few things that I currently think sound really good so I'm gonna go with it as well as some items that might just trick the kids into eating the veggies they are currently striking.  We'll see....

Menu for the week of March 18, 2012:

1. Quinoa Stuffed Artichokes ~When I was in labor with my son (the first time ~I had a good practice run before the real thing) my husband and I went to the Cheesecake Factory and had this grilled artichoke that was amazing.  I've been wanting it ever since the whole neighborhood has been on this grilling frenzy and it's all I can smell!  These aren't grilled, but they'll do nicely! 

2.  Roasted Red Pepper Mac N Cheese ~this is the original recipe our raw cheez sauce came from and I'd like to have it this way.  I think it looks really delicious. 

3.  Lentil Meatballs ~I'll be serving these with pasta sauce but without pasta.  I have no idea what else I'll serve with this or with most of the meals we are having this week but at least we'll have the main part....  *Oh...and the comment section for this recipe said the 'Meatballs' were mushy so I am going to process them less which will give them better texture and bake instead of fry. 

5.  Pizza with sliced eggplant, tomato, olive oil and garlic

7.  This is going to sound awful but...Pizza Rolls.  It sounds awful for two reasons.  One, because we are already having pizza this week and two, because it sound like we're eating those terrible microwaveable things I used to eat in high school.  EW!  Actually, my mom will be watching the kids for a significant period of time one day this week and I need to make sure they have enough food to eat while I am gone.  I decided it would be fun for them to eat an allergy friendly version of the linked recipe!  The ingredients are all completely different anyway and it really won't be like they are eating pizza twice in a week.  I am taking the recipe for the cinnamon rolls I mentioned earlier and altering the dough to make it savory.  I'll add some italian seasonings and some salt then I'll fill the inside with veggie-fied pasta sauce and daiya cheese before rolling it up.  Bake and serve!  Should be pretty good!  (I'll add chopped olives, mushrooms, shallot, pepper, and greens to jarred pasta sauce)  I will also be making hummus, pre chopping vegetables for dipping, some kind of cracker, peanut butter balls, and a caramel sauce for green apples.  That way, they have plenty of food before I go and some of those things, I can take with me as well.  Win-win! 

We'll see what actually gets done this week....though I have no choice but to make the pizza rolls and the other treats for when my mom is watching my kids.  Therefore if it's a succes, I shall post the results and how to make them!  Hope you all have a great week and a wonderful St. Patrick's Day! 

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Weekly Menu 3/11/12

Hi there!  I hope you are enjoying the weekly menu posts and perhaps getting some new ideas for your meals as well.  You don't have to be gluten free or vegetarian to enjoy these meals and everyone needs more veggies and less gluten in their lives anyway!  Maybe some of these ideas will help you embrace meatless Monday or give you some additional idea for branching out in your food lives?  Either way, I am enjoying typing the posts and coming up with the recipes!  Plus, now I have all my menus saved and if I ever feel a lack in creativity or time...I can just pick from one that is already done!  Love it!  Once again, I lack pictures.  But who cares because the linked recipes have marvelous pictures and I'll too be busy cooking and eating (as you will, I'm sure) to bother with pictures! 

Some of the recipes on our list this week, were inspired by the upcoming weather forecast!  It appears as though we are going to have (we'll see but here's hoping!) quite a few days in the 60s and even one in the 70's!!!!!!!!!  I realize it's not the tropics but it ain't snow plowin' weather neither! ;-)  I am a summer girl and even though being pregnant in the summer isn't always grand, I am still looking forward to it! So, some of these recipes are summer inspired!!!!  Some are rainy weather recipes but still they will all be fabulous.  Hope you love them!

Weekly Menu for the week of March 11, 2012:

1.  Black Bean and Guacamole Burritos!  (if you actually click on the link....this picture just screamed, "SUMMER!" at me!)  We bought some brown rice tortillas when they were on sale and have a stock pile in the freezer to use for this recipe.  Sadly, I do not own any type of grill whether indoor OR out but I'll see what I can redneck rig for these tasty guys! 

2.  Cranberry-Avocado Salad with Candied Nuts and White Balsamic Vinaigrette.  This salad has gorgeous color and I love candied nuts in a good salad as does my husband.  This will probably be reserved for our 70's day!  Can't wait!

3.  Sundried Tomato Pesto!  I've had a craving for this and we will be having it next week!  I don't even care what we serve with it....could be pasta, maybe baked potatoes or some homemade gluten free bread?  I don't care...I just want the peso!  (just omit the cheese)

4.  'Salmon' Patties and Apple Fries!  I'm really excited about this one!  :-)  My husband always, always wants some kind of fry when we have any type of burger and I wanted something different than the usual sweet potato or russet potato.  We'll be using apples!  Yum!  (I am probably not going to use all of the spices in the recipe)

5.  Maple Baked Beans, Mac and Cheese and either steamed broccoli or asparagus.  I'm loving asparagus right now and so is my toddler so we've been eating it a lot!  We'll see what happens this week though.  I feel like we eat a lot of macaroni and cheese but the recipes are rarely the same and I like to try them all plus, it's good!  P.S.  My husband is going to try pressure cooking our beans for the first time!  If this is a success...I will be very, very excited!

6.  Waffles and roasted red skin potatoes with chives.  Again...we love eating breakfast for dinner and having this waffle recipe for dinner one night means I'll have enough left to freeze for breakfasts also.  Can't lose, less work!

7.  Tahini Soup and steamed zucchini.  This soup will be one of our rainy day dishes and I loooove steamed zucchini with chives.  I don't add anything but chives to sliced zucchini and it's really idea why but it's really good!  Of course, we will be subbing gluten free/vegan noodles for the egg noodles in this recipe. 

As for snacks and lunches this week?  I don't know.  I never had the chance to make beet chips or the coleslaw from last week so I'll probably make those but everything else is up in the air.  I did make some sunbutter form last week's menu and it was delicious!  I've been eating it by the spoonful with Enjoy Life chocolate chips!  In case you were wondering, our grocery list looks like this:

-almond milk (at least one unsweetened)
-black beans
-avocado (5-7 depending on how many I have left from the week before.  My son eats them for lunch)
-dried cranberries
-salad greens
-red skin potatoes
-carrots (for juicing, eating and to use the pulp for salmon patties)
-dulse flakes
-raisins (Kroger has an organic bag of raisins at a decent price and we use them for everything from cereal to random snacks plus they are in the coleslaw)
-lemons (juice, dressings and addition to water)
-apples (bagged organic apples for juice, fries, eating, etc)
-raw cashews (I'm out :-( )
-pasta for pesto and tahini soup
-zucchini (2 ought to do it)
-greens for juice (probably celery, romaine, cucumber and dandelion greens or swiss chard)
-strawberries, grapes or some other snacking fruit for the kids.  I just get whatever is on sale unless there is a special request. 

We typically try to keep it under $100 per week.  I'm hoping we'll be able to do even less when we have a garden but we'll see....until then, I think this is pretty reasonable for mostly raw, gluten free, veggie people.  We actually budget more for our food but I like to see if I can keep it under $100 and usually I can if I meal plan.  We feel like fueling our bodies with real, healthy food is far more important than spending that money on other things like cable, texting, eating out, etc.  It's really important for us to have healthy food to nourish our bodies and keep them functioning properly.  We feel better when we eat this way and for us it's, "Pay for real food now, or pay the medical bills later!"  (paraphrasing something I saw on pinterest but I loved it!)  Because we do budget extra for our food, we can then buy the things like acai powder, raw cacao, spirulina, Vega protein powder (which I still only buy when it's on sale!  Last week, I had a coupon AND it was on sale for 35 dollars when it's normally 75 so I got it for 30!!!)  and other super foods or extras that we want.  Keeping the budget down for the weekly menus really helps and we know we have that cushion if we really need it!  For instance, I was craving some gogi berries and I do need the protein and iron so we were able to get some even though they don't come cheap!  If we weren't mindful of what we spend regularly and if we didn't cut back on other things, we wouldn't be able to get things like that.  Food is our medicine!  :-)  Have a great day!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Weekly Menu 3/4/12

Hello again!  I started planning this menu last Thursday and didn't finish it until this morning.  It wasn't hard to put together and there are actually two less dinners than normal but I just couldn't decide on what I wanted.  I always ask my husband for imput and rarely does he think of anything.  Sometimes he wants something specific but most often he just tells me to make whatever and he'll eat it.  He does often put in his request for desserts but this week he didn't care what we were eating as long as there was going to be food.  I do care but I couldn't think of anything that sounded super yummy.  Thus, it took me three days to finish the list!  Oh well, it's done and it turned out pretty good. We're having some of our favorites with a couple of new things that are sure to become favorites and I'm pretty happy with it.  I only planned five dinners though.  I just couldn't think of anything else so I'm banking on leftovers for a couple of days.  I am making a casserole one night and chili another and those things typically do yield leftovers.  If not, we'll have something random from around the house.  I also planned some snacks and lunches which I have been trying to do more so we have a bigger variety of interesting things to eat during the day as well.  Here goes....

Menu for the week of March 4, 2012:

1.  Spring rolls and raw teriyaki sauce from 'The Raw Food Detox Diet.'  I have some rice wraps in the cabinet that I'll use for these and I am altering the inside to include avocado in addition to cabbage, carrots and peppers.  The sauce is a really simple blend with ginger, lemon juice, maple syrup, and soy sauce (use g-free).  We use Bragg's Liquid Amino's when we use soy sauce.  I also make a ginger-scallion sauce that is AMAZING.  It's just ginger, Bragg's, maple syrup, a little bit of brown sugar or molasses, chopped chives or green onion, and tahini (though you could also use almond butter).  I whip it up every time we have a stir fry or some kind of Asian inspired meal.  We will be having some rice with this dish as well because I think my daughter will want some and I need the extra protein. 

2. Raw Food Detox Diet 'Lasagna.'  I have made this lasagna before and it's quite tasty but I am changing the way the recipe is put together simply because I am lazy.  I already have brown rice penne so I am going to use that on the bottom instead of lasagna noodles and layer with thinly sliced medallions of zucchini and eggplant instead of long, thin strips because it's easier to cut.  It will end up being more of a casserole.  This dish also has spinach, goat cheese and pasta sauce. 

3.  Sweet Potato Lentil Chili and chickpea flatbread (also known as socca). 

4. Pumpkin Pancakes and breakfast potatoes.  I added this recipe to our list just this morning!  We made pancakes and they were fantastic.  Really, really fantastic!  I added chocolate chips as a surprise for the kids and it was a major success!  We were surprised how fluffy these pancakes were and decided to have Brinner one day this week as well!
Pumpkin-chocolate chip pancakes!  YUM!  These would be really easy to make ahead and freeze too!

5.  This dish is a little something I like to call 'Megan's Falafel's!'  My friend Megan gave me the recipe and I have no idea where it came from, she can't remember where she first saw it and I've never been able to pull it up on the internet.  Therefore, 'Megan's Falafel's' were born! ;-)  These are really easy to make and taste really good.  They also refrigerate well for the next day so it's a win-win.  I'll give you the recipe below and if this recipe is originally yours, feel free to claim it!  Random and funny:  Kyle doesn't like to call these falafels because it sounds too much like waffles and he thinks they should taste like waffles.  Sigh.  So....we have to call them hush puppies which in turn makes the little lady think it's more fun to eat them.  I don't care, as long as they are eating!!! 

Recipe for Megan's Falafel's:
-1 can garbanzo beans (or the equivalent of dry, cooked)
-1/4 onion or 1 small shallot
-1/4 cup cilantro or parsley (we always use cilantro)
-1 tsp cumin
-1/4 tsp coriander
-1/4 tsp baking soda
-1/4 tsp sea salt
-organic/non-gmo cornmeal
*preheat oven to 425.  Mix all ingredients together in food processor, form into balls, roll in cornmeal, brown if desired and bake for 10 minutes!  DONE! 
*serve over a bed of salad greens, tomato, avocado and quinoa flatbread with tahini-lime dressing!  We use our standard tahini dressing since we usually have some on hand or just mix a little tahini with lime juice and sea salt ~call it a day! 

I'm glad to finally have this recipe on the computer because I just have it on a really old piece of paper stretching the top margin of what used to be a former weekly menu.  I have to dig it out every time I make these! haha

I told you I also have some lunches and snacks on the list this week and they are as follows:

Lunches/Snacks week of March 4, 2012:

1. Romaine Wraps.  Another recipe from Raw Food Detox Diet.  It's just almond butter, raw honey and lettuce all wrapped up together but it sounds good and I think my little girl will eat it but I'm going to use sunbutter. 

2.  Raw Coleslaw.  We're using Natalia Rose's recipes a lot this week, another from the aforementioned book!  I will have lots of cabbage leftover from the spring rolls so I'll use it in this recipe and make some Liquid Gold Dressing, also from the book, to go with it.  My husband can take this to work and we can munch on it throughout the day here at home.

3.  Apple-Raisin Dream.  Natalia Rose again, surprise!  The dressing recipe above makes a lot and this salad, though the ingredients are completely different, uses the same dressing so I won't waste any.  This is another lunch/snack item that we can eat at home and my husband can take to work. 

4.  I'll be making coconut butter to add to smoothies, top pancakes and waffles and just eat with a spoon.

5.  Salt and Vinegar Beet Chips.  I have tried beet chips before and I did not like them but I have read that if you soak them in salt and vinegar first it almost pickles them and they make a great chip after that!  We will be using the dehydrator but you could use the oven also.  I currently have Kale Chips in the dehydrator which will give the kids something to munch tomorrow and Monday as well.  I'm staying away from Kale right now because of my gallbladder.  The cabbage family is really hard on my gallbladder right now and kale is the worst of them for me (sad day!)  plus we are already having cabbage for the coleslaw and spring rolls so I'm taking a couple of chances there and I don't want to take any more.  I can't promise I won't have a couple and chase them with some milk thistle though! ;-)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Weekly Menu 2/26/12

Hello all!  We're back with the weekly menu.  I can't say last week was a huge success but at least I had a plan!  I'm sticking with it and making another menu for this week.  Even if I'm too nauseated or tired to actually make the food on my list, at least I have an idea of what can be done if I decide to try!  Of course, this list was not easy to make because even as I am typing this, I feel like I could toss my cookies.  (Or, cupcakes rather.....we had a bit of a birthday celebration for a certain 3 year old this weekend)
Lots of chocolate ~the lady's favorite!  (Yes, that is the 'Peanuts' gang!)

We did get around to making tacos!!!!!!!!!!  They were fantastic and the Follow Your Heart sour cream is amazing!  It tastes like full fat regular sour cream which is exactly what I wanted!  It actually inspired me to make a sort of recreation of a dip my mom used to make!  Oh boy, it was good!  We were short on time so instead of making the lentil-walnut taco meat, we did a few different things instead.  I mixed chili powder, onion powder, cumin and sea salt with a can of gluten free/vegetarian refried beans.  I then layered the refried beans, plain lentils, sour cream, salsa, and a mixture of avocado, organic corn, black olives, and sweet bell pepper!  We dipped the chips right in and it was glorious!  

We almost forgot to take a pic which is why you can see my favorite bunny jammie pants in the photo also!  Don't act like you don't have bunny jammas, ok! ;-)  I found a few more vegan taco recipes on pinterest and I'm super excited to try them, I'm thinking taco night might be a regular occurence.  Though, sadly....tacos are not on the list this week.  Maybe next week though? 

Menu for the week of February 26, 2012

1.  Tomato soup and cornbread (yeah, we didn't get to this one and I have all the stuff ~don't judge!)  If you happen to be following along and you're saying to yourself..."Self.  I do not want tomato soup and cornbread again!"  Have no fear!  This butternut squash-apple soup is absolutely amazing!  We also really enjoy this cornbread which is more sweet than savory. 

2.  Raw chili.  I'm really anxious to try this one!  I have three recipes for raw chili form three different books and they are all different.  However, I think I'm going with the one in my Alive in 5 book.  It's super easy and sounds delicious.  I'll probably warm it on low in the oven.  If raw chili does not sound appetizing to you or you don't have a good recipe, here are a few you could possibly add to your menu:  Super Easy Vegetarian Chili, Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili, Pumpkin Chili.

3.  Portabella steaks and rosemary-garlic mashed 'potatoes.'  We may also have steamed asparagus.  The steak and potatoes are actually raw recipes from Mathew Kenney's book.  They looked so delicious, we had to try them!  The potatoes are actually mashed jicama!  Kinda fun!  If you do not have this particular recipe, you can give this one a whirl, Marinated Mushrooms and Cauliflower Mash.  We have actually had that recipe twice and it is delicious.  Just be sure to use gluten free tamari.  

4.  Dreena's Mac-OH, Geez!  Tastes nothing like mac and cheese but it's fabulous!  This dish is hearty and delicious and I really do love it!  I have some gluten free bread crumbs leftover from Thanksgiving that I'll use to top the casserole.  I may also make some g-free garlic bread.  I haven't yet decided.  

5.  Avocado Pasta.  I love this pasta.  It's quick, easy, and delicious enough that even the kids will eat it!  I use lime juice rather than lemon juice and I think it makes this dish extra special.   I'll use corn-quinoa linguini and also....I omit the extra oil and use filtered water instead.  

6.  Chickpea floured eggplant, roasted red pepper and salad.    

7.  Calzones!!!  My husband has been requesting these.  He could probably eat them every day if I made them.  Truthfully, they ARE that good!  We use this dough recipe and use an assortment of filling.  You could use anything you want.  We use the typical pizza toppings; pepper, olives, tomato, spinach, sauce, cheese.  You could use daiya but we have been using goat cheese recently.  Since I have been pregnant, I just cannot stomach daiya.  Again, if you are following along and you're thinking...."Geez.  These people eat a lot of pizza."  Maybe consider a lasagna for this week.  Spaghetti Squash Lasagna, Vegetable Lasagna (this looks amazing!)  We already have pasta on the menu twice this week, once with brown rice and once with corn-quinoa but both of the above lasagna recipes are noodle-less and only use veggies so you won't be having pasta three times in one week. 

Our fabulous calzones after baking in the oven!  Gooey, wonderful mess!  (My husband overstuffed his in spite of my advice....this would be the reason his is bursting at the seams! haha)

Bon appetit, folks!