Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Really ……You’re Cooking Supper?

Yup, that's right.... I'm actually posting twice in one week.  Trust me I'm as shocked as you are!!
If you follow me on twitter you may already know that I put my house up for sale.  Something I honestly wish I didn’t have to do but my tenants moved out at the end of May and I know I’ll never find tenants like them again.  Adding to the stress of finding good tenants is the fact that my parents live next door soooo you can imagine how difficult life could become if the tenants from hell moved in.
Another reason for selling is that I am planning on going back to school.  Never thought I’d be saying that at the age of 42, I must be crazy!!  Everyone always says you should do something you love, enjoy, and are passionate about, well I’m here to tell you I don’t love accounting/finances and I certainly am not passionate about it, but it does pay the bills.  So I’ve decided to change things up and start off by studying to become a Holistic Nutritionist.  Fingers crossed my old brain can handle the extra work.
I’ve been struggling lately with preparing meals, again. Hubby is a meat and potatoes kind of guy.  He does NOT like veggies.  I mean he doesn’t even like onions or peppers in a meal unless they are cooked to DEATH and I mean cooked to death.  If he comes home and sees me chopping peppers he has it in his head he won’t like it.  If I chop the veggies up in the food processor so they are pretty much indistinguishable he’s none the wiser and he has always says he like it.  I tell you it’s like cooking for a kid.  I actually bought cookbooks for kids for ideas on how to hide veggies in food. Sad, I know.  Once in a while we have a breakthrough and tonight was one of those nights.  Hubby decided he was cooking supper. It doesn’t happen often and his choices are usually not “healthy” but I am grateful for the break all the same.  Especially with the struggle I’ve been having lately.
I was pleasantly surprised with tonight’s choices.
Cherry Tomato & Pancetta Amatriciana
  • 1 box Penne or Fettuccini
  • 2 tbsp EVOO
  • 150 grams Pancetta1/2 red onion diced
  • 7 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup white wine (he used low sodium chicken broth)
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 2/3 cup flat leaf parsley chopped
  • 1/2 – 1 cup fresh basil chopped
  • 2/3 cup grated parmigiano regiano
  • 1 cup pasta water
  • salt & fresh ground black pepper to taste
Cook pasta according to directions on package.
In a large skillet sauté pancetta until crisp.  Drain fat.  Add EVOO to pan.  Sauté onion and garlic for 5 min or until soft. Stir in wine (or broth), parsley, tomatoes and pepper.  Cook about 10 mins.  Add pasta water, basil and cheese.  Add pasta and toss.  Serve with fresh grated parmigiano and chopped parsley for garnish.
Pancetta Amatriciana
He also made some Oven Fried chicken.  I don’t have the recipe for that but I have to say it was quite tasty. 
oven fried chicken 
Not the best pictures, but technology hates me tonight.  It started with my camera when I went to take pictures of supper.  This is what the screen looked like when I turned it on.  I think it’s safe to say it’s toast :o(

Well that’s all for now…. The big game is about to start, so I’m going to join the rest of Canada and cheer my team on!!  Game 7 !!!!
Cheers…. Jackie

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Chocolate and Quinoa

Well Hellloooooo!!!  It appears I haven't written since December.  Wow, how time flies.  I've planned on writing many, many times over the last month or so.  I've written many posts in my head, unfortunately they never made it to the blog.

Even though it's been awhile, I'm just going to make this a quick one.  I've been on a search for a relatively healthy cookie that hubby would like.  Well, I've finally found one.  One of the main ingredients is quinoa, yup that's right quinoa.  Now I was a wee bit skeptical when I saw quinoa in a cookie but I thought I would give it a try.

Chocolate Quinoa Cookies 
Adapted from Peggy Kotsopoulos Recipe

My changes are marked with an * and the measurements are approximate.  I've made them a couple of times and didn't measure any of my changes either time.  It's an easy recipe to play with though, so have fun with it!!

1 cup cooked quinoa
1 cup quinoa flakes (or oatmeal) - I used oats
1 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
2 large VERY RIPE bananas *
1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp coconut sugar*
2 Tbsp maple syrup*
2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted*
1/4 cup hemp seeds
2 tsp Maca (optional)*
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 - 1 tsp cinnamon*
pinch of sea salt
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/4 -1/3 cup cocoa
Optional ingredients - raisins, walnuts, pecans

Preheat oven to 380 degrees.  In a medium mixing bowl, mash bananas with a fork add vanilla, maple syrup and melted coconut oil.  In a large bowl combine remaining ingredients.  Add wet to dry and mix well.  If you think the batter is a little on the wet side you can add a few more oats or a bit more cocoa powder.  The batter should be on the wet side though.

Line baking sheet with parchment paper and drop batter on to cookie sheet.  Bake for 25-30 mins. * They took about 20 mins in the convection oven*

I made half the batch without cocoa or chocolate chips for hubby.  He doesn't like chocolate... I don't get it myself, how can anyone NOT like chocolate.  One of the great mysteries of the world!

Here's hoping it's not another 6 months before I post again.

Cheers... Jackie