Saturday, May 21, 2011

Healthy Grains with Shrimp

I picked up a bag of Healthy Grains from Trader Joe's to try.  The reviews were mixed.  I liked the combination of pearly couscous and crunchy beans, while my Mom thought the texture was "different."  My Dad liked them though, which is saying a lot!

Healthy Grains with Shrimp

1/2 pkg. Trader Joe's Healthy Grains
2 tsp butter, divided
1 1/4 c vegetable broth
1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined

Prepare grains with butter and broth according to package directions.  Meanwhile, saute shrimp in remaining butter until pink and opaque.  (Season as desired.)  Stir shrimp into grains, and serve.

We enjoyed ours with steamed broccoli on the side.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Yellow Split Pea Soup

This is a combination of two different recipes.  I couldn't leave well-enough alone.  If desired, you could season this many different ways, using a variety of herbs.  Don't be afraid to experiment!  Also, you could puree the soup a little with an immersion blender, or mash it a bit with a potato masher, if you'd like a thicker soup.

Yellow Split Pea Soup

2 cups split yellow peas
1 small onion, minced
2 carrots, peeled and minced
1 stalk celery, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large potato, peeled and minced
8 cups vegetable stock
Salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients in a slow cooker.  Cook on HIGH for 8-10 hours.

Stovetop method:
Soak peas in water overnight.  In the morning, drain the peas and set aside.
In a large stockpot, cook the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic in 2 tbsp butter until tender.  Add potato, peas, and stock to stockpot.  Bring to a boil.  Cover; continue to boil for 20 minutes.  Turn heat to low, and let simmer, covered, until peas are tender.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Trying New Recipes

I have a lot of cookbooks.  As in, I have two shelves full here at home, and two packing boxes full in my sister's basement.  Beginning next week, I'd like to start making at least one new recipe per week from them.  I'll just grab a book, flip to a page, and try what I find!  Whether it be breakfast, lunch, dinner, a snack, etc.  If it's good I'll post it.  Hopefully you'll be getting that new recipe every week.  :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Menu Plan for this week

Yes, I'm late.  Sorry about that!

Mixed grains with grilled shrimp and veggies
Slow cooker whole chicken, potatoes, cooked carrots, green beans
Mexican skillet
Bean soup and cornbread
(Out one night)

The night that we make the slow cooker chicken, everyone but me will eat the chicken.  I'll feast on a baked potato and the other veggies.

For the tacos, I use black beans, and add taco seasoning.  After they're warmed, I eat the black beans in my tacos instead of beef.

Sunday, May 15, 2011


There is a family that I have known for as long as I can remember.  My parents were friends with the parents, and my sister and I were friends with the kids.  I spent summer days hanging out at their house, and the father was my Explorers leader.  During high school, their daughter moved to Georgia.  The weekend that I turned sixteen, my sister married their son.  They had two children, linking our families forever.  Divorce followed, which was hard on both families.  And although we, technically, are no longer family, I still consider them such.  Mostly because they are the family of my niece and nephew, but also because they have been a part of my life throughout all of it.  Their daughter is still a friend to me.  I still consider my ex-brother-in-law to be one of the best men I've ever known, and a part of my family.  He has since remarried and had another child.  Our children play together. 

The point of this story?  The father lost his battle with cancer a few days ago.  I am so glad that his daughter was able to be with him, that he was surrounded by his family.  My niece and nephew were at his side.  My ex-brother-in-law was able to say goodbye.  For all of these things I am grateful. 

May you rest in peace, B.