Monday, May 6, 2013

Comfort Food

May 6, 2013

Today turned into a great food day! The kids both packed peanut butter sandwiches for lunch. My hubby packed leftover grilled veggies and fruit. I love pasta for lunch. Give me a big bowl of pasta and home canned tomatoes and I'm a happy girl. I am trying to do healthier lunches than white pasta. I was thinking about my quinoa kale craisin pilaf that is a copycat of Gordon Biersch's. I wanted to change it up a bit.

I made quinoa and about half way through the cooking time I added in a handful of craisins. They plump up so nice when simmered and they give the quinoa a delicate sweetness. Yum! There was leftover salad from yesterday. It was a mix of romaine lettuce, spinach, red onion, mushroom, carrots, and tomatoes. I made a bed of that and added more tomato, cilantro, and avocado then topped it with the warm quinoa. Oh gosh. It was amazing. I think this may be the first time ever that I ate salad without salad dressing and I am a Ranch fanatic. The avocado and quinoa made dressing not necessary.  I can't wait to make it again tomorrow!!

I spent the day soaking and simmering a bag of dry black beans. It is cheaper than buying canned and healthier too. One bag of dry beans gave me five bags of beans to put in the freezer. I divided the beans into two cups per bag.

This weekend I was talking to my hubby about being a vegetarian. So far I don't really miss meat too much because everything we have made has been really flavorful. I wanted to branch out though and make meals that are reminiscent of a meat meal (versus just adding beans to something). Today was the day. I wanted to attempt to make meatballs.

I found a recipe on Celiag16hubpages for meatballs that I wanted to try. It was a mixture of chickpeas, eggs, onion, parsley, oatmeal, bread crumbs, asiago cheese (recipe called for parmesan), pepper, salt, and worcestershire sauce. The recipe was meant for spaghetti and meatballs but I wanted to make mashed potatoes and serve the meatballs with the gravy. I made the potatoes half out of potatoes and half cauliflower. I tried a new gravy tonight too. The recipe is on Allrecipes. It is made from vegetable broth, onions, garlic, flour, nutritional yeast, soy sauce, thyme (recipe called for sage but I didn't have any), salt, and pepper. I also served it with a side of corn (frozen from the farmer's market). So how did our "meat" balls turn out? Wow. They were delicious. The kids and my hubby all had second helpings. The kids asked me to make them every Monday for Meatball Mondays. Even the texture was great. I think we will try them next time with spaghetti sauce. The gravy was delicious. My daughter doesn't like gravy and never eats it. Well guess what. She loved this gravy! All in all, today was a great food day. I can't wait to experiment tomorrow!

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