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Mediterranean Chicken

Posted by on Jul 21, 2013 in Cooking, Dinner, Food, Gluten-Free, Lunch | 0 comments

I’m so excited to share my favorite version of a great recipe that I discovered on Pinterest. This delicious mediterranean style chicken dish never disappoints, even though I almost never make it the same way twice. The fresh mediterranean flavors from the garlic, marinated artichoke hearts and feta cheese blend beautifully and make for a fresh twist on classic (and sometimes boring) baked chicken. A splash of balsamic vinegar and sautéed red onion adds a nice sweet-savory balance to the tartness from the feta and artichokes. In my book, any dish that I can throw together in under 30 minutes is the perfect solution for a quick lunch or weeknight dinner. I just love cooking simple meals with fresh ingredients, and this is my go-to when I want something warm, satisfying, and easy to prepare. I’ve served this dish with salad, gluten free pasta, and most recently over a bed of quinoa, and each variation was delicious. That earns extra points for versatility in my book. I hope you enjoy experimenting as much as I did. Let me know how it turns out!

Ingredients:

about 2 lbs of chicken breast, cut into smaller chunks
1 14 oz can of white beans (I use white kidney)
1 14 oz jar of marinated artichoke hearts
1 pint of cherry tomatoes
1/2 red onion
1-2 fresh garlic cloves
1/2 cup feta cheese (you can also use
splash of balsamic vinegar
few tbsp of coconut oil for sautéing
salt, pepper, and italian seasonings
handful of chopped parsley for garnish (optional)

Directions:

1. Marinate chicken breast in juice from the artichokes (and seasonings if desired) for at least half an hour, then drain and prepare to sauté by cutting into smaller chunks. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2. After draining the artichoke juice for the chicken marinade, drain and rinse the beans. Combine the beans and artichokes in a medium sized bowl and set aside.

3. Slice the red onion into half moons and finely dice the garlic.

4. When the chicken is done marinating, warm a few tablespoons of coconut oil in a sauté pan and brown, cooking about 3/4 of the way through (I like to season with salt, pepper, and italian seasonings as I brown). Be careful not to overcook the chicken because it still has to go in the oven.

5. Once the chicken is partially cooked, add it to the bowl with the beans and artichokes and toss everything around. Set aside.

6. Add the onions, garlic, and cherry tomatoes to the pan with the juice from the chicken and begin to sauté on medium heat, adding a little more oil if necessary. This is also the perfect time to add a splash balsamic vinegar, which really enhances the flavors. Cook the veggies down until you begin to get a nice caramelization and the tomatoes begin to burst.

Side Note: I like to over-season the veggies and chicken just a bit so that the flavors aren’t too muted if serving the main dish over a bed of quinoa or pasta.

7. Toss all of the ingredients together in the bowl. Once combined, empty the contents into a casserole dish and sprinkle the feta cheese evenly across the top. Bake for about 15-20 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through. Remove from the oven and garnish with parsley (optional). Serve with salad, over quinoa, pasta, or even spaghetti squash for a unique twist. Enjoy!

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Apple Cinnamon Quinoa “Oatmeal”

Posted by on May 23, 2013 in Breakfast, Food, Gluten-Free, Vegan, Vegetarian | 0 comments

Sometimes I just wake up wanting a hot and satisfying breakfast.  Prudence of course dictates that I should go for a refreshing, detoxifying raw smoothie, but my cravings strongly say otherwise.  My idea of a “real” breakfast is something hot that incorporates vanilla, cinnamon, and a porridge-like consistency.  In other words the creamy, slow cooked, oozing with brown sugar, butter, and cinnamon oatmeal (or Cream of Wheat) that I remember eating as a kid.  Mmm so good!  However,  since these days I try to keep our gluten intake relegated to holidays and special occasions (when we’re probably at someone else’s house, or eating out), oatmeal doesn’t often make it onto the breakfast menu.  I know that gluten free oats are available, and I actually keep them in the pantry for baking and my gluten-free granola, but they are so darn expensive! And sometimes it’s just fun to see what kind of new, healthier twist I can put on an old favorite.

Apple Cinnamon Quinoa “Oatmeal”

New Bride’s Apple Cinnamon Quinoa “Oatmeal”

 

This is a more grown up version of the oatmeal I grew up eating.  Just as satisfying, and a whole lot healthier. I substituted quinoa for the oatmeal and used all natural, lower GI sweeteners. The apples add extra fiber and texture, and the flavors of the apple, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and sea salt all work together wonderfully. My husband and I polished this off in one sitting (to be fair, I ate most of it), but I guess it could make 4 servings if you aren’t too hungry :) I hope you enjoy it.

Apple Cinnamon Quinoa “Oatmeal”
 
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A hearty, filling breakfast porridge filled with protein, fiber, and complex carbohydrates to fuel your day.
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 2-4

Ingredients
  • 1 cup of uncooked quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cup of apple juice
  • 1 cup of almond milk
  • 2 apples, peeled and chopped
  • dash of cinnamon
  • dash of sea salt
  • pinch of nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon of coconut sugar
  • 5 drops vanilla liquid stevia (optional)
  • handful of chopped or slivered almonds (for topping)
  • vegan buttery spread (optional)

Instructions
  1. Bring the quinoa, almond milk, and apple juice to a boil, stirring frequently to prevent the milk from curdling
  2. Turn the temperature to low, stir in the apples, and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes
  3. As the liquid begins to cook down, add the seasonings, and continue to stir occasionally
  4. When the liquid is nearly cooked down, pull the pot off the heat and fold in the coconut sugar and (optional) stevia. Be careful not to over-stir, or the quinoa will develop more of a mushy texture
  5. Allow the quinoa to rest for a few minutes, top with vegan buttery spread and almonds, and serve.

 

 

 

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Posted by on Apr 29, 2013 in Baking, Cooking, Dinner, Food, Gluten-Free, Lunch | 0 comments

Around our house pizza is the holy grail of foods! It’s viewed as a rare, deadly indulgence, usually involving the kind of splurge that takes a few days (and a lot of lemon detox water) to recover from.  That is until the other day when I came across this recipe on Pinterest.  A big thanks to Beth from eat.drink.smile for the awesome idea!  Since the hubby and I are both trying to get back into pre-wedding shape (ah but a girl can dream…), it’s been a while since we’ve had any pizza, and we enjoyed this immensely.  We followed the recipe exactly but I will post it here as well for convenience’s sake.  The end product was similar to a thin crust pizza and we loaded it up with tons of toppings including free range organic turkey pepperoni & ground turkey, organic mozzarella cheese (I would have used Daiya dairy free cheese but I wasn’t sure if the crust would hold up), peppers, onions, mushrooms, black olives, and tomato sauce. Amazing!  The only two bits of caution I would give are A) the crust can be a bit fragile so if you do a lot of toppings you will probably end up eating it with a fork, and B) I recommend cooking the crust on a greased nonstick pizza pan or cookie sheet, sans tinfoil, because I used tinfoil and it got a little stuck around the edges – oops.  All in all this pizza is extremely satisfying, filling, and delicious and I don’t think anyone would ever guess the crust is made out of cauliflower.  I hope you enjoy it, because we definitely did!

New Bride Survival Guide Cauliflower PizzaNew Bride Survival Guide Cauliflower Pizza New Bride Survival Guide Cauliflower Pizza

 

Cauliflower Crust Pizza
 
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There is a lot to love about this pizza crust! Not only is it gluten and grain free, it is absolutely packed with flavor from the Italian seasonings. I think you could try a dairy free version also, but it might take some experimentation to get the texture right.
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Italian
Serves: 2

Ingredients
  • 1 cup riced, cooked cauliflower
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, plus another cup for the topping
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • ½ tsp crushed garlic (I used a clove of garlic to make garlic paste)
  • ½ tsp garlic salt
  • olive oil (optional)
  • pizza sauce
  • your choice of toppings

Instructions
  1. Take 1 large head of fresh cauliflower, remove stems and leaves, and chop the florets into chunks
  2. Add to food processor and pulse until it looks like grain, do not over pulse or you will puree it (if you don’t have a food processor you can use a cheese grater)
  3. Place the riced cauliflower into a microwave safe bowl and microwave for 7-8 minutes
  4. One large head should produce approximately 3 cups of riced cauliflower
  5. Preheat oven to 450 degrees
  6. Grease a cookie sheet or pizza pan with butter, olive oil, or coconut oil
  7. In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup cauliflower, egg and mozzarella
  8. Add oregano, crushed garlic and garlic salt, stir
  9. Transfer to the cookie sheet, and using your hands, pat out into a 9″ round. Optional: Brush olive oil over top of mixture to help with browning
  10. Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes, remove from oven
  11. This is the best time to pre-cook your toppings since you only need to broil them at the end until the cheese melts
  12. To the crust, add sauce, toppings and cheese, place under a broiler at high heat just until cheese is melted (approximately 3-4 minutes)