Tag Archives: chickpeas

Chutney Chickpeas (and TEDDIE!)

I finally got the chance to play with my favorite little furry four-legged today!

…just a shame Vermont can’t plow roads this winter. I could have made it there much faster? Even in this picture you can see where someone started swerving!

With all the fashion blogs out there today, I thought I’d join in on the trend. Here I am modeling my gloriously fab boots, snow-pant breeches and Carhartt knock-off.

This is why I’m hot.

Naturally, being so bundled up didn’t make for optimum riding gear. So why not just hop on bareback (er…blanket-back…) and go for a snow ride?

That was Teddie’s thought as he took great joy in making me get an additional workout trying to climb atop him.

He may be short, but damn, when you’re wearing bulky clothing, you’re sinking up to your butt in snow, and you have an excited pony walking in circles around you because he wants to visit with everyone, it’s a lot easier to say “hop on” than it is to actually hop on.

When I finally got halfway on he was at least patient enough to stand still while I made like a seal as I flopped the rest of myself up and over.

We had fun. Maybe we’ll just become snow riders for the rest of the winter. Or pick up skijoring.

And in case you thought I was too hot to handle before, it got even better when I put my helmet on:

I realize I look like dorkus maximus, but look at Ted!

daaaaaaaamn! Oughta have put a warning sign on this blog.

See all that snow on his bridle? He took great pride in trudging along with his nose buried in the snow while I thought he was going to roll on me. Luckily, the only time I had to bail was when I accidentally steered him into a drift that was up to his belly. It was probably deeper than that, but his belly kept him from sinking further, luckily.

Sorry, Ted.

Oh,yeah…anyways. About that food thing.

Truth be told, when it came to dinner tonight, I almost just sauteed up some spinach, garlic and barbecue sauce with barbecue tempeh and called it a night. And if I didn’t have to work tomorrow, I totally would have.

Sauteeing spinach in olive oil with garlic and BBQ sauce is way better than it sounds, fyi.

But, I kind of like making enough dinner the night before working to be able to pack an easy lunch to bring the next day. Sauteed spinach wasn’t going to cut it.

Especially sauteed in garlic. I can still smell my breath from having it for lunch, and that was 5 snacks and a dinner ago.

I might as well just dedicate this post to Rachael Ray, what with using her bench scrape, knife and recipe.

They were Christmas presents! (…but I still love Rachael Ray.)

I’ve made this “Chutney Chicken One Pot” and posted about it before – well, raved about it before – but just linked to the recipe with all of my swaps written separately.

Well, usually I don’t break my “link-back” rule, but since this is one of my favorite meals (I’ve gotta go there) and I’ve made some substitutions over the couple times I’ve made it, I’m just going to go ahead and post how I make it.

Chutney Chickpea One-Pot

serves 2 as a side, adapted from Rachael Ray’s Chutney Chicken One-Pot

This dish is easily customizable to your likes and dislikes. Check out my notes after the recipe! Not only that, but once you’ve got everything chopped it comes together in a handful of minutes! And I know I just talked about a fear of long ingredients lists – and this one is…but it’s SO easy and you’ve probably got it all on hand.

  • 2 t. olive oil
  • 1 granny smith apple, peeled and diced
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/4 c. diced celery
  • 1/4 c. diced green or red peppers
  • 1/4 c. diced dried apricots
  • 2-3 dried Turkish figs, chopped
  • 1 c. chickpeas
  • 1/2 t. ground cumin
  • 1/8 t. curry powder
  • 1/2 t. allspice
  • 1/8 t. ground ginger
  • 1/4 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T. dijon or whole-grain mustard
  • 2 1/2 T. unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 c. vegetable broth
  • 2-3 handfuls baby spinach

Heat the oil in a nonstick pan over medium heat. Add in the apple, onion, celery and peppers. Saute until slightly soft. Add in the spices, dried fruit and chickpeas. Stir and then add in the broth, applesauce, vinegar and mustard. Reduce heat and bring to a simmer. Simmer about five minutes, until sauce thickens slightly. Add in the spinach, stir and cover. Remove from heat, leaving covered until spinach wilts.

Serve with some crusty bread or a grain!

Last time, I made it with tofu instead of chickpeas, and mixed in cooked bulgur instead of serving it with bread. There were other differences, but I also didn’t add the spinach. I much prefer it with spinach! I also think I preferred it with bread instead of a grain.

I love dishes that mix a sweet element with savory, and this one hits the nail on the head. Change it to your tastebuds, though. I chose to use applesauce instead of jam because I figured jam would be pushing the envelope on too sweet. You can also easily use a bit less dried fruit, and use what dried fruit you have on hand. I love apricots and figs, but raisins are good, too!


Filed under apple, beans, bread, chickpeas, cooking, equestrian, food, healthy cooking, healthy living, horseback riding, pony, recipe, snow, teddie, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian, veggies, vermont

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions!

I had a lot of decisions to make today.

Now before you go getting all concerned, relax! Relax. Fortunately for me, the hardest decision I have on days like today is what I’m going to have for dinner. Before you laugh, that’s a pretty big decision. I mean, it can make or break your day! …or maybe I’m just a little dramatic.

In case you haven’t heard, it’s snowing all over the northeast.

I’m guessing you’ve heard.

My first decision I faced was whether I wanted to call in to work or not. I’m guessing you can figure out pretty quickly that I called in.

Which meant that I decided sauteed apples were in the forecast for breakfast this morning. I was awed when I saw that my beloved Gala apples were on sale at Hannaford’s. Unless they’re fresh picked from the farm down the road, they’re the only apples I truly enjoy. (okay, so I probably prefer them over the local McIntosh apples, but I fear that might be un-Vermontan of me to admit, so I won’t. We have maple laws for Pete’s sake, I wouldn’t put it past us to have an apple law, too)

My, oh my, how I’d forgotten how amazing sauteed apples are.

I polished off the last of my bread yesterday, and knew I had to make more today. The decision?

Do I keep it as the original inventor intended, or mix it up again?

I kept it as intended, and think this loaf is a bit prettier (re: less embarrassing) and so won’t withhold the name of the kind woman who shared her recipe with me this time – it was the lovely Sarena, of course! I don’t think there is anything she can’t do in the kitchen. And if you don’t want to see really delicious looking pancakes with a beautiful pour of maple syrup, definitely don’t go to her blog right now.

While that rose, I faced another decision: strength or cardio?

Cardio won.

But these things can only keep me entertained for so long. It was 9:00 and I was already looking for my next project.

Biscotti or granola bars?

Biscotti, says mother – who also had a snowday.

Orange chocolate chip or cranberry almond?

Orange chocolate chip. Best biscotti I’ve ever made all thanks to Veganomicon. No I can’t share the recipe and no I can’t find it either. Buy the book. The biscotti and the chickpea-quinoa pilaf are worth that $15.

…but do I want peanut butter, jelly or maple cream on my hot-from the oven bread?!

Maple cream.

But what kind of nut butter do I want smothered into my date?!

It doesn’t matter because I’ll have another one in five minutes.

If I have hot cocoa in my Easter mug, will it be Spring tomorrow?

probably not, but you can try.

I love this Dagoba hot cocoa!

Should I shovel multiple times so that I only shovel a couple inches at a time, or once so that I’m shoveling more than a foot – but only one time?

Uhhh, well, I banked on multiple times, but this so-called “storm of the century” fizzled out, and I didn’t need to shovel after the once.

As it is, though, the snowbank to the side of our front porch is taller than the front porch, and if I venture off the beaten path I am up to my waist in the fluffy powder.

I hope I can go to the barn tomorrow so I can ride Teddie in it! Hopefully he won’t be like my Corona pony and decide it’s more fun to roll in said snow than it is to play in it. I’m not worried about getting rolled on, I’m worried about my saddle getting saturated. I paid more for the saddle than I did for the pony.

Do I make buffalo tempeh or barbecue tempeh?

Both! Sorry, guys – but I think I’m getting tempeh burnout. I’m sort of bored with it. When this block is done, I need to bid goodbye for a couple weeks. Needless to say, I do adore buffalo tempeh! Especially with the last of my caesar dressing and red onion (I heart red onion + buffalo + caesar)

I think I struggle making the decision between sweet potato fries or whole-baked sweet potatoes more than I struggle with the decision about what to wear.

It takes me a while to figure out what to wear in the morning. It’s too early to think clear, so I just stare into my closet for at least five minutes as if it’s some other-worldly realm.

And in case you were wondering, a whole baked sweet potato won, but I didn’t get to use this picture yesterday and was pretty proud of how perfectly baked and cut those fries are. Not to toot my own horn or anything.

Dinner was a big decision today, but I couldn’t be happier with the outcome.

I knew I should use the eggplant I had in the fridge, but nothing was particularly speaking to me.

Yes, when I flip through recipes certain ones call to me. I can plan “ooh I want to make that!” until I’m blue in the face but I can never decide what I want for dinner until 3:00 that day.

What did speak to me was Chickpea Piccata. (< Lucky for you guys, Isa has the recipe for this one on her website!)

But what to have it with?


But how?

My new favorite way ever, of course!

I was flipping through my binder of recipes,and saw this very plain-jane recipe for roasting eggplant originally from Cooking Light. I was a bit apprehensive that it would be all that great – it is basically eggplant straight up, after all – but combined with the absolutely amazing piccata, this meal was enough to make me fall head over heels in love with…well, everything in site. It turned me into a hippie peace-love flower-girl.

For the eggplant, though:

Roasted Eggplant

slightly modified from cooking light, for one eggplant:

  • 1 medium eggplant, about 1 lb.
  • olive oil for brushing (I used basil oil)
  • pinch salt, pepper and herbs de provence

Preheat oven to 450*. Carefully slice your eggplant the “long way” into 1/4″ slices, leaving the end in-tact. Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and fan out the eggplant. Brush with olive oil and bake for 15-20 minutes, until lightly tender. Remove from oven, press down to fan out more, and brush again with olive oil. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and herbs. Bake 15-20 minutes more or until tender and skin is beginning to crisp.

My mom: “are you going to eat that whole eggplant?”

Don’t mind if I do!

Decisions – do you find yourself sometimes having a terrible time deciding over the silliest of things, too?! Please say yes so I’m not alone. And don’t ask me who you should marry. I’ll just say “everyone! peace and love!”


Filed under apple, baking, bread, breakfast, chickpeas, cookie, cooking, dates, dinner, eggplant, food, food blog, healthy living, lunch, nut butter, pancakes, recipe, snack, snow, sweet potato, tempeh, Uncategorized, vegan, vegetable, vegetarian, veggies

Four Things & Moroccan Recipe #978

A while ago, the lovely Jess tagged  me to do a fun little survey. Being the space cadet I am, I’ve been forgetting and forgetting! I only have one quick recipe to share tonight though, so there’s no better night to remember what I’ve been meaning to do:

1. Four TV shows that I watch

  • Bruins hockey
  • the morning news
  • Two and a Half Men
  • random Food Network shows when I’m bored/need background noise/etc. Really, the only thing on TV that I dedicate myself to and set time aside for, is the Bruins.

2. Four things that I’m passionate about

  • Teddie/horses/animals in general
  • photography
  • foooooood – including but not limited to baking, cooking and eating
  • life

3. Four words/phrases I use a lot

  • “Hi!” or “Hello!”
  • “Hi, this is Jess at [my workplace] just calling you to let you know your order is done!”
  • “how was work?”
  • “what’s goin’ on?”

4. Four things I’ve learned in the past

  • Everything really does happen for a reason, even if it seems it’s unfair.
  • Getting frustrated or stressed gets you nowhere.
  • It doesn’t hurt to ask questions.
  • People have better things to worry about than the way you look/are dressed/how you did your hair.

5. Four places I would like to go

  • England
  • Colorado
  • Canada
  • Italy

6. Four things I did yesterday

  • Played with Teddie
  • Baked
  • twiddled my thumbs
  • ate a lot of food

7. Four things I am looking forward to

  • Spring.
  • The cold being over with.
  • Setting up my desk tomorrow so I can finally use my computer without sitting on the floor.
  • Using CS5

8. Four things I love about winter

  • snowdays
  • watching the pretty snow fall
  • …I’m a little bit bitter about how cold it is right now, so that’s all I’ve got.

9. Tag four people to play along

Uhh, I think I’m a little late to the party on this one – who hasn’t done this?! If you’re raising your hand right now, I’m tagging you 🙂

And Yes, you read that right. I haven’t had a desk this entire time because the stupid winter delayed its delivery. I no longer have a butt and my knees are permanently deformed probably, too. Since I’m just using a little coffee table still, I’ve either been siting cross-legged/kneeling/leaning/whatever in attempts to try and be comfortable.

I’m whining about it. But whatever.

Since I love you guys, I’m not letting it negatively affect my sharing of recipes.

This is where some of you just roll your eyes in the back of your head because of the above fig picture, thinking to yourselves “JESS! We’re sick of all of your Moroccan dinner recipes involving cinnamon and dried fruit! Enough already!”

Well then. If you ask me, enough is never enough. I’ve been loving me some Moroccan tagine-esque dishes. What’s better than a spicy-sweet savory dish, marrying the spices of ginger, cinnamon and cumin with the sweetness of dried figs, raisins and fresh apple, pulled together with nutty bulgur wheat?

All I hear is silence. That’s right – there’s nothing better. Except maybe peanut butter and jam sandwiches, but that’s not a fair comparison because you can’t mess with that classic.

Anyways. This is enough for two-three servings. I had it for dinner last night, wrapped in collard green leaves, and for lunch today alongside a sweet potato.

Whether you eat it plain, stuff it in a collard wrap or pair it with another veg – it’s a winner.

Moroccan Bulgur Recipe #978

  • 1 c. cooked bulgur
  • 1/2 med. yellow onion, diced
  • 1 t. coconut oil
  • 1 clove garlic, mashed
  • 2 large white mushrooms, chopped (optional – I had two mushrooms in my fridge that needed using, but this could easily be omitted)
  • 3/4 t. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 t. ground ginger
  • pinch of ground clove
  • 3/4 t. ground cumin
  • 1 med-large Granny Smith apple, chopped and tossed with a bit of lemon juice
  • 3 dried figs, chopped
  • 2 T. dried cranberries, chopped
  • 2 T. raisins
  • 1 c. cooked chickpeas
  • salt and pepper, to taste

In a medium pan over medium heat, heat the coconut oil. Add in the yellow onion and cook until soft, about 5-6 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook one more minute and then the mushrooms. Cook until tender. Add in the spices (you may need to add a tablespoon or two of water at this point) and combine. Stir in the dried fruits, apple, chickpeas and bulgur and combine well.

Serve either in collard green wraps, over a bed of spinach, or enjoy plain!

And now I’ve gotta fly because they’re replaying the B’s game from this afternoon, that I was only able to listen to while at work. It was a great game, though, and I’m so psyched I can actually watch it now!

What, if any, is your favorite sport to watch?



Filed under cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, recipe

Pajama Day

Today was a sweatpants kinda day. You know – one of those days that you stay in your pajamas because you have nothing else to wear.

Er – okay, so that was maybe the case for me…but you’re probably more responsible than I am.

I promise these weren't as burnt as they look. Even if it was only by a little bit.

At least, I don’t remember them being black like that. Maybe my memory is fading. I remember them being pretty darn good, but I am a little weird, I guess. FWIW, spreading oil on your iron doesn’t work as well as mixing oil into your batter.

For those asking what I have for my waffle iron - this is it. A Cuisinart. Nothing fancy, but it gets the job done. I think it was like, $20 at Bed, Bath & Beyond.

[clicky]But anyways. I tried to get the motivation to go to the barn and see and ride Teddie this morning. I mean, don’t get me wrong. I didn’t not want to see him – but I just was not looking forward to the actual commute of getting there, and then getting home afterwards. I’m feeling sick of always driving places. I had some other things on my mind to get done. The drive takes up more time than anything else. I didn’t want to leave my mom to do yardwork and horsework all by herself. It was windy. I wanted to go grocery shopping. My cat was running around wearing a fedora. I just looked at the forecast and thought it was going to snow this week, but they just have stupid rain droplets that resemble snowflakes.

and so on. I sort of just wanted Teddie to teleport to my backyard.

You know, wings and stuff...so he can teleport...

Needless to say, when my mom didn’t want to come along I sort of just decided to stay home today. I missed him…but at the same time, I didn’t really have any time to miss him.

Let me just say: I have been loving hardly touching my computer all day lately. A couple minutes in the morning and for a very short while in the afternoon near dinner…and other than that, it’s just if I need to look something up. It’s very refreshing.

So, what did I do instead of playing with the cutest and most bestest pony in the world and surfin the web?

  • went to get groceries (this isn’t as hypocritical as it sounds re: driving – I may live in the boondocks, but Price Chopper is a five minute drive at most)
  • went for a walkrun
  • helped my momma rake the front lawn
  • cleaned the front lawn
  • made branana muffins
  • made SuperCharge Me cookies
  • did laundry
  • cleaned out the horses
  • played with the horses
  • put the horses to bed

so it doesn’t look like all that much…but this morning was exhausting!

After returning from the store with gigantic bags of frozen peas and mixed vegetables that I purchased for just $1.99 due to overstock as well as finding some bars that I’d never seen before (I nearly squealed with excitement) I decided to go for a run. Slash walk. I laced up my sneaks and ate the other half of my banana + peanut butter, and off I went.

See, I’ve been reading so many blogs lately (ahem – especially these lovely ladies) that make me just wish I was a runner. I already know I’m not, but when I start thinking “ooh! a run!” I know I need to just go for one to remind myself why I don’t. So that’s what I did today. There is a car that has a couch sitting on top of it down the road from me that I keep wanting to photograph, so I decided to just run/walk there.

And you thought Vermont was boring.

There and back, it was about 3 miles. Not a lot, but enough to remind me why I don’t do it often. I guess it’s not fair to say I didn’t have fun – I found it enjoyable enough. (cough- especially the powerwalking parts-cough) But the fact that I had to deal with a 5+ pound d90 slung around my neck in a very awkward camera bag made it a little less fun.

And I’m still debating as to whether the chair-ontop-of-car was really worth it. And my iPod died. And I must have looked so pathetic that an old man stopped his car to ask if I was just going for a walk or if I needed a ride.

I told my mom that, and she told me the same man asked her the same thing last time she was out walking.

I don’t think he was a creeper, I think that just goes to show you how infrequently people are out walking around out here, baha.

Disclaimer: I kept running even after the discomfort of the camera and realization that walking was more fun for me because I wanted to get back to help my mom. Not just because other bloggers do it and I “want to be a runner.” I am perfectly okay with what I do do, and don’t focus on what I don’t like so much. (This is a great post on comparing yourself!)

Anyways. I got back and raked/shoveled/what-have-you for a couple hours before it was lunch time.

I declared today to be “clean out the fridge” day. I have a lot of little random bits in the fridge that need to get used before I make more meals for the week! For this sandwich, I sauteed baby spinach, garlic, red pepper and chickpeas in a bit of olive oil until it was wilted down. Mixed with some raspberry-fig sauce and sandwiched between two slices of whole wheat before panini-ing. And a side of sliced peach.

Naturally, I still wanted a lil’ somethin’-somethin’ afterwards, and based on the fact that we have bananas out the wazoo (both frozen and fresh) I decided banana soft serve was a wise choice.

I blended it with some cottage cheese that’s been hangin’ out for almost too long instead of greek yogurt. I’m not sure if that sounds gross – but I promise you’d never know. Topped with wheat germ and honey roasted peanuts. ’twas heavenly.

Why so many bananas? Well – I play my cards right and end up getting about 3 bunches for $1.38 every other week or so. They’re usually not even over-ripe by much, if at all! And more often than not, they’re the organic bananas because everyone buys the cheaper ones. Score.

Since I just did this last week and still have a lot in the freezer, I froze some of these, left some out, and baked with some. We still have a lot of bananas. I’m not complaining.

Even though I still have some of these Branana Muffins in the freezer, I decided to make more. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it, right? Right. I added a shredded carrot this time, and used raisins. I prefer the others better, but it could also be that I took more care in making those ones 😛 OH! And I used date sugar! I forgot about that change until just now!

I also made another batch of SuperCharge Me cookies because my mom loves them. I thought maybe I’d bring some to work but I don’t think I’ll be allowed to. I wanted to make Chunks of Energy, too – but people were sleeping and I figured the food processor would go over like a lead balloon, so I just went out and played horse for a while.

Cleaning out the fridge continued for dinner. Based off of a Moosewood’s recipe for Ratatouille Rice, I had Ratatouille Bulghur.

  • Prepare bulghur as usual – when cooked, add one diced tomato. Stir in a spoonful of cottage cheese (finishing it! success!) and set aside.
  • Prepare veggies: Sautee the last 1/4 of a diced red pepper in olive oil.
  • Add some cubed zucchini, even though you know you don’t like it. It was there and it’ll be hidden enough that life will go on.
  • Cut off some mold on your eggplant and then cube the last of it. Add it in, along with a cubed portabella cap, minced garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper.
  • Beg your mom to use the last two portabellas, even though she only wants one.
  • Add in some chickpeas, almost finishing the container.
  • Cook the veg until eggplant is tender.
  • Fold in the bulghur.
  • Realize you’ve made way more food than you intended. Once your bowl is almost overflowing, pass some off to your mom, then realize the rest will have to be for another day.
  • Top with feta.



Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, healthy living, lunch, recipe

Frightening Phyllo

I will never learn my lesson.

I will never learn to wait for food to cool off when it’s still about 300*, straight from the oven. Instead, I must try it that second.

This afternoon has me playing with phyllo dough after my mom bought a box with no real motive behind it, and after it’s been sitting in the freezer for months – she’s been begging me to do something with it. While waiting for my “real” phyllo dough dessert to cook – I played with a phyllo dough toaster strudel.

Actually, I didn’t realize I was essentially making a toaster strudel until after – I just wanted me some PB & J and since the phyllo dough was there and I wanted to convince myself I like phyllo dough (since, you know – I was making something with it and all) I figured why not?

Of course – anyone who’s had those slivers of chemically flakyness (a.k.a. toaster strudels) knows that fresh out of the toaster, the jam (or, more commonly known as HFCS mania) is really really hot and oozes right onto the tip of your tongue, scalding it and ruining your day.

That was me.

I am still feeling the pain.

To make matters worse, thirty minutes later I discovered my “birthday dinner dessert” was not any sort of dessert I wanted to share after a birthday dinner.

We were having my mom’s dinner tonight rather than last night because I had to work yesterday – and since she had to work all day today, it would be nice for her to come home with dinner all ready to dig in to. She is stubborn and said she didn’t want a cake or anything special. I almost made a peach crisp, but when I saw a recipe for “Apple and Dried Fruit Streudels” in a Moosewoods cookbook, it clicked.

Of course, I soon discovered how much of a pain phyllo dough is to work with. Not five minutes in to the project and I was having major regrets. I think something was wrong with the phyllo dough – or, more likely – I wasn’t working fast enough and it kept drying out, regardless of the olive oil I was rubbing it with.

I ended up stuffing them with a mixture of diced apple, chopped dried figs, and cinnamon. After multiple attempts to roll them up all pretty, I finally got them done, and skeptically awaited the outcome.

The filling is delicious – I mean, it’s just apples and figs – but they look kinda gross, and I don’t like the flakiness of the phyllo dough. However – they are excellent with some vanilla chobani. They won’t be wasted, but I knew I could do better for our birthday girl.

And so I made Moosewood’s Banana Bundt Cake. Recipe can be found here – but you should definitely buy the cookbook 😉 My mom is pretty open to “how” I eat and is starting to enjoy a lot of my dinners.

But she is not a fan of whole wheat-y things like desserts. (Well, she doesn’t think she is. Little does she know that the super charge me cookies, branana muffins, and banana bread she’s been loving are whole wheat. Hmm…maybe she’s coming around?) So I knew for dessert I had to play it safe. My crazy mind wanted to add all sorts of things – nuts and dried fruit, especially – but I backed off. I’ve also really been wanting to bake something with that date sugar.

But today was not the day. I made it as-is. All purpose flour, sifting and everything. And if you’re looking for a basic, simple, yet still impressive cake recipe – give it a try!

And for what it’s worth, she actually really liked the apple-fig strudels and wanted me to bring the whole plate over instead of the little taste I gave her, hah.

Maybe I’ve had bananas on the brain, though – because they showed up this morning in waffle form.


  • 1/4 c. oats
  • scant 1 c. puffed rice
  • 1 T. ea: wheat bran, wheat germ, WW flour
  • baking soda


  • 1/2 a banana, mashed
  • 1/4 c. vanilla chobani
  • 1 T. milled flax
  • splash almond milk
  • splash peanut oil


I added peanut oil to the batter this morning because I’m all out of cooking spray and thought it might help keep them from sticking to the iron. They still wanted to stick to both sides, so I just let it sit a bit longer. I loved how they were really crispy and dark on the outside but still had some soft, chewy, banana-y goodness inside. I’ll have to burn them more often 😛

Iced coffee, I wuv woo.

It was so refreshing to step outside to a beautiful morning. It was sunny (granted – I slept until almost 8 today!) breezy and cool. I dined outside with Miss Kitty – why is it that animals always take the best seats?!

Look at my big hunk! If only Blue (far right) had his head to the side – they’d all look the same!

This is Jewel, Teddie’s girf. He’s her big, muscular boyf. What a cute couple.

Little does she know he wants every other girl in the barn, too.

“Hi guys!”

Teddie and I just had a quick-ish ride in the meadow today. A little more serious and less play than usual, but still fun. Just worked some more on suppling and collectiong than we have been. It was really, really windy though, which kept blowing these little flowering things all over. I think he kept getting them up his nose!

A broccoli bowl was gobbled up for lunch – broccoli, hummus, carrots, fried egg, toast. While browsing cookbooks to figure out what I was going to make for dessert.

Enter: afternoon phyllo-dough torture, cleaning the whole house head to toe (err…floor to ceiling?), banana cake baking, and horse cleaning.

And then, my mom’s chosen dinner.

Okay, actually – this isn’t my mom’s chosen dinner. I never match my socks (usually they’re white anyways), and at one point I looked down and realized I was going for a winter theme today. A christmas tree and lights on one – penguins and snowflakes for the other.

Hey, it works.

Yeah, dinner. Chickpea-Quinoa Pilaf! Or, “that squiggly stuff,” if you’re my mom. Page 115 in the bible. (a.k.a. Veganomicon)

It starts by sauteeing onions and garlic in olive oil. I added red pepper, too. Then you add in tomato paste, spices like cumin, quinoa, and then your water and chickpeas.

And slowly simmer until they start to look like “little squigglies.”

In the book, it’s considered a side – but honestly, there’s no reason it can’t be a meal. It’s a complete protein!

I topped mine with some feta cheese, and a slice of bread afterwards.

A really, really simple dish – but so good! Make it.

And these pretty ladies haven’t shown their faces in these parts lately:

The one and only George-Porge.

So – we still have a ton of phyllo dough. What’s your fav phyllo dough recipe?

And any plans for the long weekend? My weekend actually isn’t long and I’m working on Monday – but I’m sure you’ll all enjoy it for me! 😛


Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, lunch, oatmeal, recipe

Look Familiar?

Sounds like my frustrations of people thinking “low cal, low fat, low whatever” is healthy is shared amongst us all. It’s really such a shame! I just wish there was a way to undo that mindset, and save everyone tons of struggle and ill-thoughts towards themselves…

easier said than done. Trust me – I’ve been there, done that. The media just sucks us into thinking fake sugar is better than real, low fat is the only way to go, and everything low calorie will solve your life problems.

Newsflash: it won’t.

Sigh. At least we can hope a new “real food” movement can start, right? And why not start with a real breakfast.

Not shockingly, I started my day the overnight oats way. Mingling overnight:

In the morning, vanilla chobani was incorporated for a creamy consistency all the way through 🙂

And topped with an old favorite of mine that had taken the backseat once peaches started being on sale for a measly $1/lb (at most!)

  • 1 plum
  • ~3/4s of a banana
  • cashews
  • drizzle of honey

Has anyone noticed how I’ve almost been keeping my breakfasts somewhat simple lately?!

Snack: hardboiled egg (with mustard) and chunks of energy.

Has anyone had any Friday the 13th happenings?! I have so far been able to escape it unharmed – but the night is young, so hopefully I haven’t jinxed myself 😉

I guess maybe that’s why I opted to just have repeats when it came to meals today! Either that or, when I packed last night – I just couldn’t get mozzarella off my mind 😉

I had a panini in (unpictured) triple wheat bread with smoked mozzarella, tomato slices, and basil soaked in balsamic.

Vanilla chobani and a white flesh nectarine.

...which was dressed up with some cashews for crunch!

As well as the leftover carrots and hummus from Wednesday 🙂

For afternoon snack, I broke into this Oskri bar sent to me from afar – thanks again, Nikki!

The ingredients were wonderfully simple: just rice syrup, sesame seeds, and date syrup.

(It got a little broken up in transit, I think :P)

While I loved the idea of this bar, I’m not too keen on the execution. I don’t care for hard/brittley type foods that get stuck in my teeth. I think I ate about half before deciding that the itty bitty pieces left would make a lovely addition to a yogurt mess, or melting into some hot oatmeal! I am going to keep my eyes peeled for more Oskri products, though – they look to be a great lineup and I think they can be found in the U.S.!

I also enjoyed an oatmeal raisin cookie that my boss’s wife made. She must have known I was on an oatmeal raisin kick or something – I couldn’t say no. She makes cookies all the time, but I tend to pass (not a huge chocolate chip cookie fan) so it’d been a while since I’d had one. And it was funny – as delicious as it was, (she’s a great baker/cook) I found it so sweet, which is not how I remembered them. Just goes to show how our tastes change.

For instance, I never used to like corn on the cob…

…and yet, I’ve had it every single night this week, if memory serves me correct!

Does anyone else feel rather caveman-like when gnawing on an ear of corn, or do you all cut it off politely? Just curious 🙂

I told you my eats today might look familiar! I can’t deny the fact that leftovers can be such lifesavers, and delicious. I had two leftover polenta bites, as well as a chickpea cutlet with tomato, mozzarella, and basil. And you know by now how I do my corn – butter, salt, and parmesan 🙂

And a sneak peek at some Teddie pictures, I hear you plea for?

Oh, okayyyy….


trotting around with our noses in the air much to my dismay 😉

He’d actually been getting much better at becoming very round, supple, and coming from behind – but then we had our little temper tantrum and I haven’t pushed the issue much – he’s going forward and I’ve left it at that, for now!

what a little stud muffin...

all smiles! he had fun in the outdoor.


Filed under breakfast, dinner, foodblog, health food, lunch, oatmeal


Heavens to bitsy, it’s been a day and a half. Don’t worry – that’s a good thing!

I didn’t actually intend to get much produce from Hannafords when I ran in yesterday – but when a beautiful array of vibrant, fresh nectarines were the first things to greet me – aside from the screaming babies -, I had to snap up a few.

And they were still in mind when I rolled out of bed this morning. I love nectarines – it’s the perfect solution for a peach-fuzz hater that still loves the taste 🙂

My usual waffles – almost, at least. I used Kashi 7 Whole Grain Puffed Cereal to replace the millet I’d used up. Just as splendid!

And I topped it with a chopped nectarine that I microwaved with a splash of almond milk and maple syrup as well as some chopped Turkish figs. Deerish! Also joining the party was some sunflower seed butter, pecans, and a drizzle of honey.

and what could go better with that than a big gulp of a southern pecan? I love being reunited with my Green Mountain!

It was quite a relaxed morning, and I did a bit of yoga while waiting to go see the cutest guy I’ve seen to date. It’s funny how I used to wake up so late that I didn’t have to wait to go to the barn…now, if I left when I was ready, they wouldn’t even have had breakfast yet! They get fed later in the morning on weekends.

Baby in a cradle.

Regardless – eventually it was time to head out…and this is how you can tell. Banana? check. Alas, it was forgotten about.

Mr. Ponykins did lovely today, and is really catching on 🙂 I just wish animals could talk – I would love to know why he ended up where he did, and what he’s done with his love before! It is obvious someone but time and training into him at some point.

My mom is getting to be quite the photographer, no?

”]By the time we [my mom and I] got home, it was quite clearly lunchtime – but first I was greeted with a package!

I know, I know – tons of you reading don’t ride. But I know there’s some of you who do, and I like to give credit where credit is due…VTO Saddlery is hands-down the. best. place. to order tack from! Great prices and sales, flat-rate shipping, and I got my box today – that I’d just ordered on Thursday! Now maybe I’ll get to ride in my dressage saddle tomorrow 🙂

Another Hannaford’s find yesterday was a new kind of Snyder’s! These were on the list, don’t worry 😉

Click to read

I think I took a good ten minutes waffling between these 8-grain, the honey wheat & oat, and the plain wheat and oat. Decisions, I tell ya what!

Click to read.

That fact that I am so indecisive I can hardly decide on a salad dressing when I’m asked probably didn’t help my case. Eventually the 8 grains won over – and just check out those stats as to why! And they taste just as amazing – I am in love. They’re also eco-friendly! Of course – that comes at a price. This is, quite possibly, the loudest bag I’ve ever touched. You’re not going to be sneaking these at night, that’s for sure. You’ll wake the whole house!

Even if you don’t like pretzels – next time you see these in the store, touch the bag.

You’ll realize I’m not as crazy as I currently sound 😉

I enjoyed some with some garlic hummus, but they didn’t need the hummus to be outstanding. They were great alone, too!

I also had a fantastic sammich with fresh lettuce from our own garden, slices of gala apple, seitan, and apple BBQ sauce.

Unfortunately, things came to a rolling stop in the afternoon – it started to rain, and thus house arrest began. I made the most out of it by whipping up some more bars!

I made a substantial number of changes from what I’ve been doing, and I like the direction – but it’s not there yet. I’m going to be picky on this hunt! I went for an “oatmeal raisin” theme this time, though – and while they could use more cinnamon as far as that goes, it’s definitely a flavor to keep in the line-up!

It goes without saying that one was enjoyed STAT!

And a short while after (re: lots of blog-reading, random veggie-roasting, and other time-killers) I set to work on dinner.

And I had a plan.

Who hasn’t tried Jenna’s lentil-walnut loaf besides myself? That’s what I thought. It’s popping up everywhere – and I’m not surprised. It looks fantastic! I was thisclose to getting around to making it tonight, but I was still apprehensive because I didn’t have walnuts. Just about every other kind of nut. Just no walnuts.

And while I’m all for substituting things – this just seemed like it needed the walnuts. So, I improvised. And came up with a chickpea-quinoa casserole loaf…thing. Wanna make it? Okay.

Sautee onions in evoo, add tomato paste and spices.

I started with the quinoa, with thoughts of a kind of quinoa-pilaf, similar to the Veganomicon recipe my mom loves and I do as well.

I simple sauteed half a medium onion and two cloves garlic in some olive oil for a couple minutes before adding in approx. 1 tablespoon tomato paste and some dried basil and dried chives.

Add in quinoa.

Once the onions were soft, I added in 1/4 c. rinsed quinoa and sauteed for a few more minutes.

Add in 1/2 c. water and let simmer over medium-low heat until the quinoa is cooked. Add salt and pepper to taste.

chickpeas, veg

Meanwhile, mash 3/4 c. chickpeas with a fork – so that it’s not complete mush and there’s a few still whole.

add in approx. 1/4 c. diced, balsamic-roasted eggplant, ~1/4 c. diced roasted red pepper, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 1 teaspoon olive oil, dried basil, dried chives, dried parsley, and pepper. Mix it well. I also added a dash of crushed red pepper flakes.

All combined.

When the quinoa is all done, add that to the bowl, in addition to 1/8 c. rolled oats, a flax egg (1 T. milled flax + 3 T. water, stirred and let to sit a couple minutes to thicken) 2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts, and 2 tablespoons mediterranean herb crumbled feta.

Ready to bake!

Press the mixture into a greased pan/loaf/something, and bake about half an hour at 425*. I used a toaster oven, for what it’s worth – and broiled for the last couple of minutes to get a better crust on top.


My mom and I both loved this. I had mine with some farmer’s market kale that I sauteed with a bit of Ragu, and some broccoli also with Ragu for dipping. The chickpea-quinoa stuff actually didn’t need the sauce for dippage – it was plenty flavorful all on its’ own!

Since I wasn’t following a recipe, just an idea – it’s not perfect, but the flavor is certainly there. I think it would do better in a bigger pan so it spread out thinner and gets a nicer crust – because the crusty portions were heavenly. It is quite moist, which I think less of the flax-egg and maybe some breadcrumbs/more oats might help with. I’d also probably add some more pine nuts – while there were enough as it was, there wasn’t some in every bite…and I wanted there to be 😉 If anyone plays with it, you’ll have to let me know the results 🙂


Chickpea-Quinoa Bake


  • 1/4 c. rinsed quinoa (dry measure)
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, pressed
  • 1 T. tomato paste
  • 1/2 c. water
  • seasonings to taste: dried basil, dried chives, salt, pepper
  • olive oil – to coat bottom of pan

Heat olive oil in a medium sized sauce pan. Add in onion and garlic, let soften a couple of minutes. Add in tomato paste and seasonings, saute 2 more minutes. Add in the rinsed quinoa, and saute ~3 more minutes before adding in water. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until cooked and water is absorbed.


  • 3/4 c. chickpeas
  • 1/4 c. diced balsamic-roasted eggplant
  • 1/4 c. diced roasted red pepper
  • 1 T. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 t. olive oil
  • 1/8 c. rolled oats
  • 1 T. flax mixed with 3 T. water, and let to thicken for a couple minutes
  • 2 T. crumbled feta
  • 2 T. pine nuts, toasted
  • seasonings: salt, pepper, dried parsley, dried basil, cumin, dash crushed red pepper flakes

Mash the chickpeas with the oil – leave some whole. Add in the veggies and balsamic vinegar and combine.

Add in the oats, flax egg, feta, seasonings, pine nuts, and then the cooked quinoa mixture.

Spread into a dish, and bake ~30 minutes at 425*, broiling for the last 5.


Dessert most certainly ensued, and then I played nurse for Mr. Jiggy. He must have bumped his eye or rubbed it on something – it’s all puffy! Hopefully it will get better soon.

Oh Yeah – and don’t forget to send me your bulgar recipes!! You guys are snoozin’ on this one. It’s like you’ve all got more important things to do than play with bulgar or something! 😉


Filed under breakfast, cooking, dinner, foodblog, health, health food, healthy living, lunch, oatmeal, recipe