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    Vegan Lentil Vegetable Soup





    2 tsp olive oil

    3-4 diced shallots

    3-4 sliced carrots

    3-4 stalks sliced celery

    4 cups organic vegetable broth (I used Pacific brand low sodium)

    1 cup water

    1 cup dried lentils (I used a half-half mix of yellow & brown lentils)

    1/4 tsp black pepper

    1/4 tsp dried thyme

    2 bay leaves

    1/2 tsp salt

    1 Tbsp lemon juice

     

    Sautee shallots, carrots, and celery in the olive oil until onions are clear. Add vegetable broth, water, lentils, and spices and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until lentils are soft (but with a bit of texture); about 45 min, depending on the type of lentils you use. Your house will smell heavenly and you will have a hard time not tasting the soup, a lot, while cooking. Remember to remove the bay leaves and stir in the lemon juice before serving! All-told this dinner - prep to serve took a bit over an hour (but I'm a slow chopper). Makes about 6 servings.

    I served with multigrain bread and a green salad (arugula, spinach, sprouts, celery, and cucumber) with raspberry vinaigrette.

     

    Everyone in my family finished their bowl to the last drop (they liked it even better than my bean & mushroom soup). I call that a win! 

    (this recipe was inspired by About.com's Vegetarian Lentil Soup http://vegetarian.about.com/od/soupsstewsandchili/r/lentilsoup.htm)

     

    Posted: Oct 13 2012, 15:26 by kelly | Comments (1) RSS comment feed |
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    Fruit and Yogurt Smoothie with Chia Seeds





    I’ve recently discovered the awesomeness of super food chia seeds and have been experimenting with them (you can check out my Pinterest Yumminess board for some recipes). The evidence seems to point to chia being a super vegan source of Omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, calcium, and protein. Plus, chia seeds add just a bit of texture without much (any) flavor. So, I thought I’d try them in a smoothie. I made this for my dinner last night, and it was so tasty, I decided to post it here for you!

     

    Ingredients:

     

    8oz organic milk

    1 container (individual serving) of organic greek yogurt (I used vanilla)

    1 ripe banana

    1/2 cup of frozen raspberries

    1/2 cup of frozen peaches

    1 Tbs of chia seeds

    1 Tbs of ground flax seed

    1 Tbs of raw honey

    1 tsp of vanilla extract (if you used plain yogurt)

     

    Put all of the ingredients in your favorite blender. Blend & drink!

     

    Note: I did not use ice because I had frozen fruit on hand. If you use fresh fruit, I’d recommend adding a bit of ice if you like your smoothies cold! This made around 20oz of smoothie, so my kids split the extra – it was very smooth, creamy, and fruity-sweet. Delicious!

    Another note: Next time I’ll add some spinach or kale for a vitamin boost!

    Final note: I made this with milk & dairy-based yogurt. I’m sure coconut milk & coconut milk-based yogurt would work as well – and make it vegan! 

    Posted: Jun 05 2012, 14:17 by kelly | Comments (3) RSS comment feed |
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    Rainbow Orzo Pasta Salad (vegan)





    This salad is quick & easy, healthy, super-fresh, kid-friendly, and best of all (of course), tastes delish! Perfect for a warm Summer (or Spring that feels like Summer) evening! 

    Ingredients:

     

    1 box of orzo pasta

    1/2 bunch of green onions, chopped

    1 bell pepper, chopped (the more color, the better - we only used one, but could have done with a second)

    1 bunch of asparagus, lightly steamed (cooked just enough to tenderize, but not lose crispness - 3 min in the microwave did it for us)

    1 cucumber (seedless if possible), chopped

    1/2 cup of italian dressing (whatever dressing you love the best!)

    salt & pepper to taste

     

    Other things you could add to expand the rainbow… carrots! celery! corn! peas! tomatoes!

     

    Preparation:

     

    Put the pasta on to boil. While it's going, steam the asparagus - but remember to go light; you still want it to have a crispness to it. Chop the veggies (the kids helped with this). When the pasta is ready, drain & immediately cool with cold water. Drain completely. Transfer to a bowl & add veggies (more kid help!), pour over the dressing, add salt & pepper, stir (even more kid help!), and then… enjoy!

    This keeps well in the fridge for a few days; watch the cukes for softness, otherwise, all the other veggies hold up well. 

     

    (I know this isn't a grea photo, but I had to add it - just for the GUSTO with which this boy stirs the pasta!)

    Posted: Apr 18 2012, 23:17 by kelly | Comments (0) RSS comment feed |
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    Kelly's Vegetarian Mediterranean Pasta





    This was an experiment that turned out quite yummy, so I'm sharing! I don't have a recipe, per se… I just threw together some things that looked good. You'll have to fiddle with the quantities per your own taste, but here are the ingredients I used & what I did with them:

     

    Box of whole wheat penne pasta

    Bunch of fresh asparagus, chopped

    Bunch of fresh basil, chopped

    Jar of marinated artichokes, sliced/chunked

    Green pitted olives, sliced

    Fresh mozzarella

    Extra virgin olive oil

    Garlic

    Salt & Pepper

     

    Put pasta on to boil. Sautéed the asparagus with olive oil, garlic, salt, & pepper - til tender but crisp - remove from heat sooner rather than later.

    While those two things were happening, I chopped the basil, added it to an 8th (maybe) cup of EVOO, along with the chunked artichokes and sliced olives. 

    I drained the pasta, added it to the asparagus, then mixed in the EVOO/artichoke/olive combo.

    Right before I was about to serve, I added the mozzarella - I didn't want them to melt. I served with garlic bread & everyone was very happy with the results! 

    Posted: Apr 11 2012, 00:49 by kelly | Comments (0) RSS comment feed |
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    English Muffin Pizza Recipe





    So what do you do when you have hungry kids, not much time, and a lot of stale english muffins? Make english muffin pizzas, of course!
    These are super-easy & fun for small hands to help make. We had so much fun, in fact, that I forgot to take photos of the preparation phase! There’s plenty to do for all levels of skill – splitting the muffins, slicing veggies, spooning sauce, sprinkling cheese, shaking on spices. Makes a perfect, quick, vegetarian lunch or dinner!
    Ingredients:
    Stale English Muffins (or fresh… but seriously, if you have fresh, just toast & enjoy with butter & jam, as they are meant to be enjoyed!)

    Your favorite tomato sauce

    Shredded mozzarella (or vegan mozzarella) cheese
    Sliced veggies for toppings (we only made cheese this time, but you can add peppers, tomatos, onions, mushrooms, artichokes, olives... get creative!)

    Garlic powder, black pepper, & oregano
    Preparation:
    Cut english muffins in half & place on a pizza pan or other surface which allows air to circulate beneath the muffins – if you like crispier crust pizza. [Note: We don’t have a pizza pan, so I baked ours on a cookie “cooling rack” which was set on a cookie sheet. You can also crumple aluminum foil, then uncrumple & line a pan (the wrinkles allow air to flow underneath)] If you like your pizza with softer crust, you can bake directly on a cookie sheet. Spoon 1 – 2 Tbs of sauce onto each muffin – spreading it out almost to the edge. Add veggies or other toppings. Top each with mozzarella cheese – remember to keep the cheese towards the middle of the muffin as it will melt & spread! Shake on garlic, pepper, and oregano to taste. Bake at 450 F for ~10 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly & pizzas are browning lightly on the edges & top. Remove & allow to cool for a few minutes. Then… enjoy!
    Posted: Jul 04 2011, 00:06 by kelly | Comments (9) RSS comment feed |
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