Chicken Spaghetti

This recipe is important to me for two reasons: 

1) Our favorite chicken farmer has had some recent back trouble so he's no longer a vendor at our farmers' market.  Tragic.  Not only did we trust his chicken, but he was the most affordable (chicken) farmer at our farmers' market.  I recently tried to buy some chicken from a different farmer.  Our conversation went something like this:

Me:  Hi, I'd like one pound of boneless chicken breast, please.
Mr. Farmer:  No problem.  (Digs around in his freezer).  Well, looks like I only have 1.1 pounds.
Me: Oh, that's no problem.
Farmer:  Great.  (Does some math).  Ok, that'll be $19.25"
Me:  I'm sorry, I thought you said nineteen dollars and twenty five cents.
Farmer: Oh yea, I did.
Me:  Ummm.  Ok, I'm gonna have to pass.  Thanks anyway.

I shamelessly walked away with my head held high.  Highway robbery, I tell you.  Highway freaking robbery.  The next week I was able to find one pound of chicken for only $9.00.  The $10 difference would have bought me three lattes at Starbucks!  Clearly that farmer is crazy.

2) I just got a new job (hooray!) for a pay cut (boo!) so gone are the days where one chicken breast = one meal.  Even at the reduced price of $9.00 a pound.

1 + 2 = the following email I sent to my mother and sisters. 

"Does anyone have a good chicken chili or chicken casserole recipe?  I have a pound of chicken and I want a recipe that will make leftovers so it will go farther than just one meal."  Thank goodness for like-minded family, right?  My sister quickly responded with this recipe.  The hubs and I both enjoyed it the next night.  And for the next few days, too.  I liked it because it's cheesy but not creamy (think cream of so and so soup -- guh.  ross.).  The hubs liked it because he had lunch taken care of for the next several days.  Win win.


9 oz. whole wheat spaghetti
1 cup chopped onion
1 tablespoon minced garlic
29 ounces stewed tomatoes, undrained, chopped (You can buy canned, but I prefer boxed as studies have shown BPA is in many canned goods)
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons dried italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups shredded cheese, divided
3 cups chopped cooked chicken


Cook the pasta according to package instructions and drain. 

While pasta is cooking,  heat skillet over medium high heat.  Add onion and garlic and saute until soft.  Add tomatoes, worcestershire sauce, italian seasoning, and salt.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes.  Stir in 1 cup of cheese.  Stir in cooked spaghetti and chicken.

Pour mixture into casserole dish.  Top with remaining cup of cheese.  Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes or until hot.

Asian Coleslaw

This recipe is a great way to get your raw vegetables in.  Don't get me wrong, I love me some steamed vegetables, roasted vegetables, pretty much any way you prepare them vegetables.  7-year-old me's jaw just dropped to the floor, by the way.    It's strange how much my tastebuds have changed since I started the real foods adventure two years ago and even though I ate far more vegetables than 7-year-old me would've chosen to eat, vegetables weren't one of my favorite foods.  It's true, though, and I can't imagine going back.  Raw vegetables have their own unique health benefits, but sometimes I have a hard time getting raw vegetables in.  I can only eat so many heads of raw broccoli, right?

Enter this recipe.  Problem solved.  It is truly delicious (the hubs and the sister who was staying with us for a few weeks both agreed).  It's also vegetarian so you can serve it to anyone (assuming they don't have a nut allergy).  And it's something new and different for when you sign up to bring the salad to the next pot luck dinner.  Or perhaps the Memorial Day cookout you're attending this weekend. 

Don't be scared by the word Asian thinking it has to be served with Asian food.  The dressing is made up primarily of asian ingredients, but I served it with baked tilapia.  It would be great with anything, really.  And as an added bonus, it's good as leftovers and doesn't get soggy.  Give it a try and let me know what you think.


1/4 cup honey (next time I'll use half that amount or even omit it totally)
1/4 cup grapeseed oil
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon Bragg's liquid aminos ("real" soy sauce)
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon all-natural peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha sauce (Thai hot sauce - optional, and I left it out)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger (I used 1 teaspoon dry ginger)
1 large garlic clove, minced

4 cups shredded cabbage
2 cups shredded carrots
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 cup cooked and shelled edamame
2 medium scallions, finely sliced
1/2 cup chopped salted peanuts (or you can leave them whole)
1/2 cup loosely packed chopped fresh cilantro

Combine all of the dressing ingredients in a medium bowl. Stir until the peanut butter is dissolved. Set aside.

Combine all of the slaw ingredients in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss well. Let sit at least ten minutes so vegetables have a chance to soak up the dressing. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.  Serve cold.

Recipe from here

Fruit and Granola Breakfast Wrap

The hubs and I recently bought our first home.  It is adorable (I'm v.e.r.y. spoiled because the house is new construction so I got to choose everything from paint to tile to appliances.  And by I, I mean my sister  Obvi.) Not only is our house adorable, but our neighborhood is adorable.  Or it's getting there anyway.  It's what we call "transitional," but it's transitioning pretty quickly.  The only thing so far that we have no sign of opening is a little cafe.  Too bad because in our previous neighborhood there was the cutest little coffee shop/bakery that we walked to on Saturday mornings.  It was perfect.  One of my favorite items on their menu was the strawberry and granola wrap.  Delish.  Now that we can no longer walk to that cafe, I decided to re-create the wrap to hold me over until someone in our neighborhood develops a cafe.  The timing of my re-creation decision worked out perfectly because we're in the middle of strawberry season.  Hooray!

Have I told you the story of the first time I tasted locally grown strawberries?  

It wasn't so long ago, just two years, when the hubs and I went to a bed and breakfast outside of town to celebrate our first anniversary. (Awww).  The owners had left a plate of chocolate covered strawberries to welcome us.  Which I ate promptly upon arrival, natch.  I took one bite and looked at the hubs with a strange face and told him I was certain the owners had infused these strawberries with sugar.  Like they MUST have injected the strawberries with a syringe full of sugar water.  The hubs just laughed at his poor city girl of a wife and told me, no, I was just eating locally grown, in season strawberries.  

I'll never go back.  I look forward to strawberry season every year now and mourn its short life span.  I don't eat many strawberries throughout the year, but from April to June, I can't get enough.  My point?  Right now is the perfect time to make this breakfast (or anytime you want to eat it) wrap.


Handful of strawberries
Plain greek yogurt or all-natural peanut butter
Homemade granola or all-natural store bought granola
Whole wheat tortillas


Spread greek yogurt (or peanut butter, whichever you prefer) evenly over the entire tortilla. Layer strawberry, banana and granola. Roll, cut and enjoy!

Ok, true confession: I got a little over zealous with my fruit and put so many on there that I couldn't actually roll my wraps.  Note to self: two or three strawberries and maybe half a banana would be sufficient if you want to roll it up.  Plus, as you can see, it ended up being a pretty big breakfast "pizza" more than a wrap and I had to save some with the hubs.

I ended up eating them with a knife and fork.  Yummy nonetheless, but if you're trying to make these for an on the go breakfast, be forewarned: less is more.  

Brussels Sprouts Salad

To quote the blog where I found this recipe, "Toasted walnuts, crunchy brussels sprouts smothered with finely grated Parmesan cheese and lightly coated in a mustard dressing! HECK YES."  Heck yes, indeed, my faithful readers.  Heck yes.

She actually calls it "addictive brussels sprouts salad" and she's right.  The first few bites it's just a salad is a salad is a salad.  But after about four or five bites I couldn't get enough.  My friend doesn't like walnuts, and that makes me sad for her.  The good news is that this salad would probably be good with any kind of nut.  I think it would be good with dried cranberries or apples added, too.  Something sweeter to counteract the bitterness of the raw Brussels sprouts.  I actually made the entire recipe and then put dressing on only half of it for dinner so the leftovers wouldn't get soggy.  The leftovers are in the refrigerator right now waiting for me.  In fact, excuse me while I go eat them right this minute.


1 pound or more Brussels sprouts, shredded
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, finely grated
1 cup walnuts, halved and toasted
9 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons apple cinder vinegar
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
salt & pepper to taste


Shred the Brussels sprouts in a food processor or chop with a knife. 

Toss the sprouts in a bowl, top with toasted walnuts and grated cheese. 

In a small jar add the olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and mustard with a sprinkle of salt & pepper. Put a lid on the jar and shake it up. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir thoroughly. 

Best served immediately.

Recipe from here

Broccoli and Cheese Soup

Soup in the summer seems weird, right?  I agree.  Especially down here in the South it is SO HOT.  And don't even get me started on the humidity.  So normally I shy away from soup any time between the months of about March and November.  But this soup is such a good way to get vegetables in that I couldn't resist trying it.  Typically when I think of broccoli and cheese soup I think creamy and rich and not at all healthy, ESPecially if it comes from a restaurant.  Incidentally, I'm learning that I trust fewer and fewer restaurants, which is sad.  But that's neither here nor there.  Back to the soup.  It is really delish without being creamy and heavy, yet it still has the creamy consistency.  And even though it's the summer, it can still be enjoyed as an appetizer (not too much to make you hot!) if you can't bring yourself to eat an entire bowl.  And it's even good cold.  Or so the hubs told me as he gobbled the leftovers the next day. 

4 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
2 yellow onions, peeled and roughly diced
4 large stalks of broccoli (about 2-2 1/2 lbs) cut into small florets
8 cups vegetable (or chicken) stock
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for serving
2 cups of arugula (watercress would be good, too) or more to taste
1/4-1/2 cup of Romano or another strong cheese

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and saute for 1 - 2 minutes, or until fragrant. Add the broccoli and cook for 4 minutes or until bright green. Add the stock, salt, and pepper.  Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and cover. Cook for 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is just tender. Pour the soup into a blender and puree with the arugula until quite smooth. You could also use an immersion blender if you have one. 
As always, be very careful when blending hot liquids. Start slowly and work in batches if necessary.
Pour the soup back into the pot, stir in 1/4 cup of the cheese (or more if you'd like).
Serve with extra black pepper and sprinkle with parmesan cheese.

(Recipe from this blog)

Bourbon Glazed Salmon

Ok, it's offish. I am for sure the worst blogger in the history of bloggers. My friend over at Do We Love It* tried to make this claim recently after taking a three week hiatus.  That's right, three weeks.  Not three months.  I think I have her beat. 

*Incidentally, we're in a fashion war.  Go tell her that you like the dress!

Do you hate me?  Will you allow for excuses?  Hmmm...I teach (and practice) yoga regularly on top of my day job, the hubs and I just bought our first house (which is a.dor.a.ble, by the way), I just accepted a new job (yay!), I'm addicted to Law and Order re-runs.  I could probably come up with more excuses but I'll just quit (while I'm ahead?) and beg your forgiveness.  Please come back to me.  I promise I'll try to be better.  To make it up to you I'm introducing you to this delish salmon recipe.  The hubs practically licked his plate clean.  So, without further ado, and at long last, I present to you...Bourbon Glazed Salmon.  Yay!


3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons bourbon
2 tablespoons Bragg liquid aminos (all-natural substitute for soy sauce)
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice (about 1 lime)
1 tablespoon grated peeled fresh ginger (I used dry because I had it on hand and I just eyeballed it, probably about 1 teaspoon)
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
garlic clove, crushed
(6-ounce) salmon fillets (about 1 inch thick)
grapeseed or coconut oil
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted


Combine first 7 ingredients in a large ziploc bag. Add fish to bag and seal. Marinate in refrigerator 1 to 1.5 hours, turning occasionally.

Heat oil in a  skillet over medium-high heat. Add fish and marinade to pan; cook fish 4 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork or until desired degree of doneness. Place 1 fillet on each of 4 plates; drizzle each serving with about 2 teaspoons sauce. Sprinkle each serving with 1 tablespoon green onions and 3/4 teaspoon sesame seeds.

(Recipe adapted from Cooking Light)