Chipotle Corn Chowder

We’re at that point in the year where we are craving warm weather (and we’re actually having super warm weather here) but the reality is that it’s still February and there is always the possibility of a cold snap in March (and even April).  This chowder, in my opinion, is the perfect meal for this time of the year.  It celebrates the produce that’s to come (corn!  zucchini!) yet it’s warm and comforting and totally appropriate for February (I can’t quite get behind eating hot soup in July).

I decided to make this recipe after noticing the abundance of frozen corn from our garden in the freezer.  I don’t want to let one kernel go to waste.  My aunt (Hey, Daphne!) was also in town and she’s a huge fan of soups so I thought this would be the perfect dinner to make while she was visiting.  On Monday evening, she was on baby duty (aka getting ALL the baby snuggles) and I set out to make dinner.  This dinner comes together super quickly once you’ve chopped all your veggies.

The potatoes, corn (if you don’t have any fresh-frozen corn I would go for frozen corn from the grocery store this time of year), onion, garlic and zucchini (I found some really pretty organic zucchini at Trader Joe’s) are sautéed in a little olive oil until tender.  Then add in the broth (I used chicken – but you can totally use veggie to make this vegetarian) and allow the pot to simmer until the potatoes are fork-tender.  Transfer about three cups of the mixture to a blender and puree and then add in the almond milk and chipotles (as much or as little) and blend until smooth.  Add the blended soup back into the pot with the remaining “chunky” soup and allow everything to warm.

cornchowder

To serve, top with some pesto and/or basil and slurp your way through this bowl of chowder.  It’s silky – as if you’ve added cream – with just the right amount of body.  The pesto and basil on top made this bowl of chowder for me and I loved the bit of heat that the chipotle peppers added to the whole bowl of deliciousness.

I hope you’re all having a great week – we’re still adjusting to being a family of three and I’m finding ways to make the time I spend pumping (almost 3 hours a day) a little more productive (aka – blogging while pumping).  I have high hopes for a Friday Favorites post tomorrow…but don’t hate me if it doesn’t happen.

 

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Yummy Salmon Burgers with Slaw

Big Guy was traveling for work earlier this week so I planned to sneak some salmon onto the menu.  Knowing that he’s not a fan of salmon, I thought it was the nice thing to do.  These salmon burgers require a handful of ingredients and they are insanely delicious.  But don’t forget the slaw – I think my favorite bites included both the salmon burger and the slaw.  Oh, and dill is mandatory in my opinion.  I adore dill and it really makes this dish shine.

I used canned salmon in this recipe but I do not recommend using Trader Joe’s canned salmon.  Unfortunately, the Trader has disappointed me.  The salmon was filled with lots of bone and cartilage.  Once I worked my way through the salmon, making sure all the foreign objects were removed, the salmon was great.

Anyways, don’t let that above paragraph turn you off from these delicious “burgers.”  Simply mix together the salmon, breadcrumbs (I used gluten-free), eggs, salt, garlic powder and herbs (DILL!) in a bowl.  Shape into patties (I ended up making six small burgers) and cook in a little EVOO on the stovetop until browned on both sides.

While the salmon burgers are cooking, prep your slaw.  Since I was only cooking for myself and no one likes soggy slaw, I only made one serving of the slaw.  Into a bowl:  shredded cabbage, Greek yogurt (I used about two tablespoons), splash of vinegar, salt, garlic powder and a drizzle of lemon EVOO (totally optional). Oh, and more herbs (DILL!).

Serve the hot, crispy salmon burgers on top of the cool, crunchy slaw with a sprinkle of salt.

salmonbuger

So satisfying and so healthy.  And packed with omega-3s which means I’m going to have a super smart baby.  hah.

 

Spicy Peanut Soup with Sweet Potato and Kale

The snow is finally starting to melt!  It’s been brutally cold and despite the fact that we’re having a major warm-up towards the end of the week, I know that we still have some frigid days in our future.  Big Guy and I don’t eat a lot of soup because we really only enjoy it when it’s cold outside.  However, we both love peanut soup – a soup that is inspired by a West African recipe.

Last night was the perfect evening for soup.  After a day of driving back from Charlotte, we wanted something comforting and cozy yet healthy.  Spicy Peanut Soup with Sweet Potato and Kale comes together in a flash on the stovetop but the recipe has adaptations for both the slow cooker and the instant pot.  There’s no excuse not to make this soup (which is actually more like a stew because of the thickness).

To start the soup, onion, garlic and jalapeño is sautéed in olive oil until softened.  Then you add in the sweet potato.  I cut my sweet potatoes pretty small but you could totally do bigger chunks – especially if you’re cooking this in the slow cooker.  Allow the sweet potatoes to brown just a little bit and then add in the fire roasted tomatoes (juice and all), coconut milk, water, salt, curry powder and peanuts.  Trust me on the peanuts.

This simmers until the sweet potatoes are tender.  Add in the peanut butter and the chopped kale and allow to simmer until thickened and the peanut butter has melted into the entire pot of soup.

Serve with an extra sprinkle of peanuts on top.

peanutsoup

So delicious!  I know peanuts seem a little weird in soup but I can’t stress to you how incredible this dish tastes.

 

{virtual} cashew coffee chat

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{hi!  our last coffee chat was over a year ago.  so grab a cup of coffee or tea or OJ and let’s chat about anything and everything.}

If we were having coffee this morning…I’d share my newest coffee obsession: Cashew Coffee.  It’s so simple – blend hot coffee and cashews until smooth and sip away.  It’s creamy and dreamy and you’ll think you’re drinking a latte.  But you’re not.  This is going to be on rotation as a mid-morning snack or afternoon pick-me-up once the cooler weather arrives this fall and winter.

If we were having coffee this morning…I’d tell you how excited I am for a little pampering later today.  I’m considering this the official kick-off to my birthday week.

If we were having coffee this morning…we’d talk about how I’m a little bummed with the results of my homemade croissants.  While they tasted great, the texture just wasn’t right.  I think it’s most disappointing because you spend three days prepping the bad boys and if they’re not perfect, well, you’re a little upset.

If we were having coffee this morning…I’m sure we’d talk about about fall plans.  I think we have one free weekend between now and November.  Oh my.

If we were having coffee this morning…I’d tell you that my Momma has gotten me hooked on Young Living essential oils and now there’s something diffusing in our house on the regular.  I adore purification.  It smells SO clean.

If we were having coffee this morning…I’d tell you that I can’t believe summer is coming to an end and football season/fall is beginning.  It’s a little bittersweet.  This summer FLEW by at a record speed and we all know summer is my favorite but at the same time we have SO much to look forward to in the coming months that I’m excited to be ushering in a new season.

If we were having coffee this morning…I’d tell you to have the BEST day and I’ll see you tomorrow with a new recipe.

5 Ingredient Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies

That’s right, a five ingredient, gluten-free cookie that is PACKED with peanut butter flavor.  Big Guy was a little hesitant at first about these cookies because of the two words “gluten” and “free” but I promised him that these would not taste healthy.

They are indulgent and rich and you only need one to tame that sweet tooth that you get post-dinner.  They are super simple to make and they’re also freezer friendly.  So you better believe I have a stash that I’ve hidden for those nights when I want something sweet but I haven’t gotten around to making anything.

Here’s what you do:

Whisk together 2 cups of coconut sugar with 2 eggs.  Add in the vanilla and salt.

Add an entire 16 ounce jar of peanut butter and mix with a spatula.  Add in the chocolate chips and stir.  Now let the bowl of deliciousness literally “chill out” in the fridge or freezer for at least 15 minutes.

Using a cookie scoop, arrange on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and bake for 11 to 13 minutes.  Allow to cool slightly before removing from the pan.  Then allow to cook completely before storing.

5ingredcookies

Note:  These do not spread out like regular cookies.  They are more round and almost like cookie bites.

Now where did I stash those cookies…

 

five ingredient banana muffins

This may be the easiest recipe with the easiest clean-up I’ve ever posted.  I’ve been staring at the bananas in our kitchen since Monday wondering what I want to make with them (the freezer is fully stocked with frozen bananas for smoothies – that’s what usually happens to brown bananas).  I researched a few that I had pinned on Pinterest but I wasn’t sold.  Then on Wednesday I was browsing Instagram and came across these five ingredient banana muffins.  And the best part – they are made in a food processor.

Here’s what you need:

3 ripe bananas
2 cups oats
3/4 cup pitted dates
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking soda

That’s it!  I did add about 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few shakes of cinnamon (a last minute addition).

Simply add all the ingredients into your food processor and whirl until smooth.  If your dates are super hard and/or your food processor isn’t super strong, soak the dates in some warm water for a minute or two before adding them to the processor.

Scoop some batter into a muffin tin and bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes (anywhere between 15 and 20 minutes).

bananamuffins

Your house will smell amazing.  And you are done cleaning up before the muffins are done cooking (well, if you have a dish washer).

These muffins have less than 130 calories each and are the perfect snack or breakfast.  I recommend pairing with a good smear of nut butter.

Sausage Potato Pie

Big Guy and I have never really been brunch people.  On the weekends we typically eat a light breakfast, light lunch and then have a killer dinner.  Until lately.

Over the past several months, I’ve truly started to love Sundays.  Gone are the days of complaining about Monday being just around the corner.  And gone are the days of not having brunch at home.

I’ve really enjoyed our slow mornings that start without an alarm clock.  After waking up, I make coffee, enjoy a cup with a small breakfast and then we go on a walk.  After we’ve worked up an appetite, it’s time for brunch.  And have I got a deliciously comforting yet incredibly easy brunch dish for you.

Sausage Potato Pie is full of potatoes (I used pre-shredded hashbrowns, oh yes I did), sausage, eggs and cheese.  A little milk helps bring it all together along with some spinach for nutrients and any seasoning you desire (I used a Savannah Summer Salt).  Simply brown the sausage and then whisk together the eggs, milk and seasonings.  Then fold in the potatoes, some of the cheese (we used a smoked gouda), spinach and cooked sausage.  Pour into the prepared pie dish, top with more cheese and bake.

sausagepotatopie

Add a mimosa on the side and you’ll really be living.

#brunchgoals