Friday, May 13, 2011


Oh, summer, we can't wait for your arrival.  It feels nice to actually be experiencing spring within the last couple of days and let me just tell you, we are soaking it up.  When in California, I really missed the seasons... A LOT, but now that we aren't living there anymore and we've had our first winter, I am beginning to think that seasons are overrated!!  Anyone else agree?  My kiddos and I just really missed being outside everyday.  We have a lot of making up to do.  :) 

We've made Popsicles before.  Last year when we would often go to the local farm for strawberries I purchased Popsicle molds in multiple shapes and we mixed up some great ones, but I never would have thought of these...

Rainbow Popsicles from Kojodesigns.  Can I just tell you how much fun my daughter and I had whipping these up.  We're all excited for snack time now.  The recipe calls for adding fruit juice which I tried with the pineapple and then I regretted it when the pineapple tasted like apple.  So from there on out we just pureed the fruit and it worked out perfectly! 

You could use ANY kind of fruit (fresh or frozen...we used up some of our Bountiful Basket fruits and a couple others we had on hand.)  We made 14 Popsicles and our molds are good sized. 

RED--strawberries, I used less than one carton
ORANGE--cantaloupe, 1/4 (if you like cantaloupe, this is DELICIOUS)
YELLOW--pineapple, whole pineapple, minus some nibbles :)
GREEN--kiwi, 1 (all I had on hand, so our green was really lacking--again, delicious if you like kiwi)
PURPLE--blueberries, 1/2 carton (probably would use more next time)

Pull out your fruits and get making.  You'll be so glad you did.  This will be a staple this summer!! 

Monday, April 25, 2011

Daikon Ideas

Here are a few ideas of what to do with your daikon.
If anyone else has any ideas, let us know!

 First, here is a suggestion for the daikon from reader Katherine R.  Thanks Katherine.

Those long radishes that look like white carrots--they are called daikon (die-con)  in Japan.  Of course, you can use them like radishes, grated in slaw or salad, or eaten with salt.  But the best way to eat them is pickled.  These are bright yellow fresh crisp pickles.   

Here is my favorite recipe: 
Sweet Pickled Daikon


  • 1 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 pound daikon radish
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt


In a small saucepan over medium heat add the vinegar, water, sugar, and turmeric. Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat and allow it to cool.
Meanwhile, peel the daikon radish and slice into 1/4-inch thick rounds. (If your daikon is very large, slice the rounds into semicircles.) Place in a colander with salt and mix well. Place the colander over a bowl and let drain for 1 hour. Rinse the salt off with a couple of changes of water and dry the daikon well. Put into a sterilized glass jar. Pour the cooled brine through a coffee filter (or a cheesecloth lined strainer) into the jar to cover the radish slices. Refrigerate at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Will keep for about 2 weeks.

And here is an idea from Martha Stewart. It can't be too bad if it's from Martha. Right? 

Daikon Fettucine with Tomato-Basil Sauce


I've also been told they are great cut up, rinsed with cold water and dipped in your favorite veggie dip.

Carne Bistec-Colombian Steak with Onions and Tomatoes

Do you still have any of the onions left from last week? Please tell me you do. And if you do, you MUST make this delicious recipe. 

I'm not a huge tomato fan, but my husband is. So being the good wife that I am :) I decided to make this for him. Well, it turns out, I did us both a favor, because this is so so good and good for you.

Head on over to and print out THIS recipe. Then put it in a handy place in your recipe box because you will want to make it over and over again!

While you are at take a  look around. There are many many more fabulous recipes like this one. Enjoy!

Mexican Chowder

Easter was absolutely BEAUTIFUL here. The sun was shining and the wind was not blowing. Wahoo! But....BUT....Today was not so great. Cold and rainy and windy. So, soup it was. At this rate, it feels like soup season will NEVER end. Good thing I like soup.If you have crummy weather this week too, give this chowder a try. It is really delicious and even my pickiest eater ate it. VICTORY! One of my girlfriends just created this on a whim one night. Very impressive!

Mexican Chicken Chowder
Tristan Chabot

1 onion chopped 
1-2 green pepper chopped 
6 cloves of garlic pressed
1 stick of butter
2 tblsp olive oil (divided)
1/4 cup flour
2 cups milk
1 can cream of chicken soup
32 oz chicken broth
2 cans green chillies
1 can diced tomatoes with green chillies
3/4 bag of frozen corn (or a can drained)
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp cumin
2 limes juiced
2 tblsp chipolte adobo sauce
2 large chicken breasts
sour cream garnish
Mexican blend cheese garnish
tortilla strips garnish
cilantro leaves garnish

Season (with salt pepper and 1 tblsp olive oil) and cook chicken breasts in crock pot on low for about 6 hours(You can cook the chicken any way you want really. Or even get a rotisserie chicken from the store.) When chicken is done, pull them out of crock pot and place on a plate to cool. In a very large pan melt butter and 1 tblsp olive oil add onion, press garlic and green pepper and cook until tender. Stir in flour until all veggies are coated. Then stir in milk. Pour in chicken broth and stir together to combine. Add cream of chicken and stir that to combine. Add green chillies, tomatoes, and corn. Then add chipolte sauce, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. Juice 2 limes and stire all together. Bring to a slow boil and then turn burner down. After chicken has cooled, chop/shred the chicken and add to the chowder. Stir to combine. Simmer on low for 15 min. to one hour or whenever you are ready to eat :)
Serve in bowls with cheese, sour cream, chips and fresh cilantro leave for garnish.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Cheddar Cauliflower Soup

I finally got around to using the cauliflower we got in our basket last week.  I made this soup my friend Aubry posted on this great blog a couple of weeks ago.  Pretty much anything Aubry makes is delicious, so I was positive this would be a winner.  

We didn't have any sharp cheddar cheese in the house, just medium.  Sharp cheddar definitely would have made it better but it was still good.  Next time I make it, I'm also going to cut down on the amount of chicken was just too thin for my liking...but like I said, still good!

Cheddar Cauliflower Soup

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced, grated, or finely chopped
3 tablespoons flour
4 cups chicken stock (like I said, I think I will cut it down to 2 1/2 or 3 cups)
1 cup whole milk or half-and-half (I used whole milk)
2 1/2 cups aged, sharp cheddar cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (this was my addition to the recipe)

Bring a couple of inches of water to a boil, add cauliflower, salt and cook until tender.  Drain, puree (I left mine with some chunks.  I like chunky soup) and reserve.

Place a large saucepan  over medium-high heat and add the olive oil and butter to the pan.  Melt the butter and add the onion and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and cook until tender, about 5-6 minutes.

Sprinkle the flour over the onions and cook for about 1 minute.  Whisk in the stock and milk, bring to a bubble, then reduce the head to medium and simmer until thickened, about 5 minutes. 

Whisk the cheese into the liquid, stirring until all the cheese has melted.  Stir in cauliflower puree.  Add cayenne pepper and adjust seasonings, adding salt and pepper to taste.

Meat-and-Grain Burgers {with spinach!}

I've said before that I am loving all of the spinach we have been getting in our Bountiful Basket lately.  I wish we would get a bushel every week!  It is so good for you and there are so many good, healthy things to make with it!

Here is a great recipe my best friend, Lara, gave me when she was up visiting week before last (I think she got it out of her Runner's magazine).

If you love hamburgers and wish you could just forget about all of the beefy fat and eat them a couple times a week, this is a great alternative.  I don't think we will make plain, straight beef burgers around our house very often with this recipe.  Both me and my husband loved these!

Meat-and-Grain Burgers
Serves six
1 pound fresh spinach leaves
1 pound lean ground beef, ground chicken, or ground turkey (we used beef)
1 small onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced 
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne 
salt and pepper to taste
1 egg
2 cups cooked quinoa (or any cooked grains, such as cracked wheat, steel-cut oats, or whole wheat couscous)

Boil a large pot of salted water; fill another bowl with ice water.  Put spinach in boiling water for 30 seconds.  Drain and plunge the cooked spinach into ice water.  Drain again, squeezing to dry, then roughly chop.  Put spinach into a bowl and set aside.  Add ground meat, onion, garlic, cumin, and cayenne.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Add egg and grains.  Mix until combined.  Shape into burgers.  Grill on medium heat, about four minutes per side. (Alternatively, place burgers in a rimmed, greased baking sheet.  Roast in the oven at 400 degrees until firm and browned, about 20 to 30 minutes.  Turn once or twice.)  Put burgers in a bun and add salsa or your favorite toppings (we did avocado, lettuce, and tomato and a cilantro lime mayo from this recipe.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Just for Fun Friday - Ants on a Log

I've met many a kid who won't eat celery. BUT...I've met very few who won't eat ants on a log! So, grab your celery, peanut butter, and raisins and make  a great after school snack for the kids. And while they eat, they can watch this fun little video.

Happy Friday!