Peanut Chicken Salad

 Is anyone else doing their Friday happy dance?! HAPPY FRIDAY my friends! strong

So guess what? Yesterday, I did it again. No peanut butter for breakfast! That’s because I was saving myself for dinner but more on that in a sec. I should also mention I did have banana with pb for breakfast on Wednesday. I am trying to scale back just a little bit for real.

But yesterday I had another Greek yogurt bowl that I had put together and refrigerated the night before.

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For lunch I had carrots, cucumber, a banana, and a nice big salad with tomatoes, black beans, olives, feta cheese, and hummus.

salad with hummus

I made a quick stop at the gym on the way home from work and then had a sweet and juicy snack once I got home…

pear

Then I got ready for dinner. We had our friends Adam and Stacy over for dinner last night and on the menu: Oriental Peanut Chicken; recipe courtesy of Dana’s mom.

We switched it up slightly and used quinoa instead of rice.

quinoa

We sautéed two chicken breasts, broccoli, onion, carrots, and mushrooms…

oriental chicken

Next we drizzled the sautéed chicken and veggies with homemade peanut sauce and gave it a good stir. This is why I saved my peanut butter consumption for dinner time. This sauce is gold it is so delicious. I may have to ask my mother-in-law if I can divulge the recipe to you all. 🙂

peanut sauce

And lastly to put it together: one heaping layer of romaine lettuce chopped into shreds onto a large serving platter, next layer on the quinoa, then the sautéed veggies and chicken, and finally top with fresh chopped cucumbers.

oriental peanut chicken oriental peanut chicken

!!!! It was so good!!! Our company was pretty great too! 😉 We had such a fun time with them as always. I get an extra wrinkle line each time we hang out from laughing so much.

I hope you all had a great week and are looking forward to the weekend as much as I am. I am off to an appointment, then work, and tonight we are celebrating Betsy’s birthday! We don’t have too much planned for the weekend but one thing I know for sure is the rest of the Christmas stuff is coming down (our wreaths are still up–whoops) and the few Valentine’s Day decorations that I do have are going up! Woooo!

How long do you keep holiday decorations up before getting crazy tired of them and taking them down?

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Laughter is the Best Medicine

Hello there my friends!

A brief food overview from yesterday. Breakfast was a green smoothie with kale, almond milk, protein powder, banana, and peanut butter.

Part of lunch: fage yogurt yogurt bowl

And part of dinner: almond bread with pb.

almond bread

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With all of the stressors in our lives, bad news on the television, and illness going around right now, I think we could ALL use a pick-me-up. If I could magically deliver dark chocolate and Starbuck’s to each and every one of you, I would, but since I can’t, how bout settling for some of my favorite pins on Pinterest?! I’m hoping there is at least one in here that will make you smile.

I immediately think of Moose when I see this dog in the cone but man throw a baby into the mix and the cuteness factor escalates times a thousand!

pick me up dog cone

Considering my love/obsession for Food Network Television, this one really got me…

pick me up ladies

My relationship with math…

pick me up math shirt

Nothing needs to be said…

pick me up labradoodle

Truth…

pick me up pay bill

pick me up sneeze

Adorable…

pick me up kiddo

Can anyone relate to this grocery one? I know I can!

pick me up groceries

Cute little diva…

pick me up too cute

And this one explains my morning…

pick me up lava floor

Remember the lava game where you can’t touch the floor because it’s made of lava? I’m sure our parents LOVED us running around on all of the furniture. 😉

There you have it, some of my favorite pick-me-ups from the wonderful world of Pinterest. BTW you can follow me—my username is NuttyMelanie.

Besides Pinterest giving this girl a good old-fashioned chuckle and lifting my spirits, I also turn to friends and family, physical activity, a piece of dark chocolate, Mooser, or Modern Family. They all do a pretty good job of turning my mood around. 🙂

Do something that makes you laugh today. Stay healthy. Laughter is the best medicine.

How do YOU “lift your spirits”? What are your favorite pick-me-ups?

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A Reminiscent Run

Yesterday was an all-around great day. The day began with a relaxing cup of coffee and banana with peanut butter for breakfast. I suppose I could say I am officially in a “rut” with the pb banana. I haven’t changed up breakfast for a good 1-2 weeks now, but I do still love my pb and b!

Mid-morning I swung by Trader Joe’s to pick up a couple of goodies as well as Macy’s in search of a swimsuit for Turks and Caicos. It’s not that I necessarily need another swimsuit it’s just that I would really enjoy another one. I wanted to look at Macy’s because I still have birthday money there and that would have worked out perfectly, but they didn’t have too many options yet. I did find one on Victoria’s Secret website that I like, but I haven’t been able to commit yet. We shall see.

For lunch I met up with my dear friend Kalley at People’s Organic Cafe per Kalley’s recommendation.
kalley and melanie

Just as I had suspected, the menu was stellar, stacked with healthy and veggieful dishes. I was in my element. She knows me well!

I went with the “Really Greek” salad: organic romaine, roasted tomatoes, quinoa tabouli, marinated chickpeas, cucumber, olives, feta and lemon basil dressing.

people's organic

It was a really good decision (ha-ha). I loved every bit of it.

My lunch with Kal flew by all too quickly. I had so much fun catching up on life, reminiscing a bit about the past, and realizing how far I have come with this beautiful lady; about 13 years! I can’t wait to see her again.

I would highly recommend People’s Organic to anybody who enjoys fresh organic, healthy food. It is slightly pricey but that is only because everything is organic. I promise you it is totally worth it. Besides salads they also have sandwiches, wraps, soup, and amazing looking desserts.

I dressed in my running gear at lunch for a reason…after lunch I had plans to run the streets of the neighborhood where I grew up. I was in dire need of a change of scenery and the last time I ran this neighborhood was last late winter perhaps (?), so I thought it would be a welcomed route.

It wasn’t my easiest run but it sure was a fun one. I reminisced the entire time. Every new street I ran by literally brought back so many memories.

I passed by my old house, Betsy’s family’s old house which was just a block away (which explains my closeness to the family as I was there all.the.time.), and about 5 houses of families I babysat for.

I ran on the sidewalk where I would always tell my mom I was thirsty towards the end of our walks. She would tell me to think of biting into a lemon because it makes your mouth salivate and that would be enough to get me home. I remembered our many walks together; reciting state capitals, showing her my new dance steps, singing songs, we have so many wonderful memories.

I passed by “the elephant tree” named because it clearly looks like an elephant. 😉

elephant tree

I passed by the “picnic tree” where Steph, Betsy, our friend Katie, and I would pack lunches and bike to eat lunch under our favorite tree.

picnic tree

I passed the ice rink where I spent many winters learning to ice skate…

ice rinkEvery single step of this run was literally a run down memory lane. Aside from the fact that it wasn’t my “best” run physically, it was sure a great mental run!

Once I got home, we took Moose to the dog park to let him socialize with some buddies. He was in quite the “loving” mood. We had to keep a close eye on him. If you ever are in need of a good chuckle, go to a dog park. Watching the dogs interact is one of the funniest things.

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After the dog park I completed my third session of the Abs Challenge. We are now on to week 2!

Dinner was a favorite of ours: veggie hash with a runny egg on top. I pulled whatever we had in the fridge/freezer which included broccoli, mushrooms, onion, leftover Santa Fe roll filler, bell peppers, and then topped the sautéed veggies with shredded cheese, tomato, cilantro, and an over-easy egg. Perfection.

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We brought out the snorkel gear last night to make sure everything still fit and was ready to go for our vacation. I feel like it is a lot sooner than the end of February based on my excitement level but considering how time flies, it will be here before we know it.

I am in the process of working on a meal plan for the week since we will be doing our own cooking in our kitchen. Once I get that set up I will share with you all!

I hope you all have a fantastic Tuesday!

Question of the day: Any go-to vacation meal ideas for me that are easy yet healthy and satisfying?

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Baked Santa Fe Spring Rolls

Hi there my loves! I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. I have some catching up to do so here we go….

Saturday

I cracked open the Parkers Farm Crunchy Honey peanut butter and let me tell you, I was in heaven. The slight sweetness of the honey mixed with the crunchy and smoothness of the peanuts paired with a good ol’ banana made me one happy little girl.

parkers farm crunchy honey parkers farm pb

After breakfast I hopped on the treadmill and did one sweaty and very nonboring routine:

  • 10 minute walk to warm up
  • 1 mile run at 6.0 mph
  • 2 minute walk at 4.0
  • 1 mile run at 6.5
  • 2 minute walk at 4.0
  • 1 mile run at 7.0
  • 10 minute recovery walk

I was really sweating after this one and the best part was it went by very fast.

After the run I completed my second session of the Ab Challenge circuit. I’ll be completing my third session today so that I reach the weekly goal of 3-4x a week. Tomorrow begins the second week with a new ab workout. I’m loving it.

I wasn’t very hungry for lunch but knew I needed to eat, so I whipped together a smoothie with Jay Robb’s chocolate egg white protein, almond milk, kale, strawberries, half a banana, and blueberries. Very satisfying.

smoothie with jay robb

Then I got to work on what I love doing oh so much…experimenting in the kitchen. Later in the afternoon I had plans to go to my mom and dad’s for dinner. They were going to be making chicken and I told them I would bring a salad.

My wonderful aunt introduced me to a deli-bought salad couple of weeks ago that I absolutely adored, and I had decided I needed to try to recreate it. The salad she had was made with chickpeas, but I wanted to use black beans instead. You could definitely substitute with chickpeas if you would like.

Here is what I came up with!

IMG_1313

black bean citrus salad

5.0 from 1 reviews
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Ingredients
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup bell peppers, diced
  • ⅓ cup red onion, diced
  • 1 green onion, diced
  • 2 Tbsp. cilantro, chopped
  • Sauce:
  • juice of ½ of a lime
  • juice from ½ of an orange
  • 1 tsp. red wine vinegar
  • salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. In medium bowl combine beans, peppers, onions and cilantro.
  2. In a separate small bowl mix the sauce.
  3. Pour the sauce over the bean mixture and stir gently to combine.
  4. Serve cold as a salad or with corn tortilla chips.

I snacked on a small handful of Driscoll’s blackberries in the afternoon. I realize now how much fruit I ate that day!

driscolls blackberriesThen off to mom and dad’s for the evening for church, dinner and the Viking vs. Packer football game.
chicken black beans brussels sprouts

Abbie chose the right move by sleeping instead of watching the Vikes lose so terribly.

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Sunday

I was a cleaning machine in the morning not to mention we hit the coupon jackpot. I swear the coupon books (all four of them) were made specifically for me. There were coupons for so many things I actually use. I was psyched.

I headed to the treadmill again on Sunday this time for a long walk (4.0 pace). I walked for about 50 minutes while watching who knows what t.v. shows. Okay, I watched the Kardashians. Guilty pleasure. I also completed my 1-minute plank from the challenge.

Dinner:

I used the leftover bean salad to make Santa Fe Spring Rolls! I added about 3/4 cup of corn and 1/4 cup of shredded cheese into the black bean salad recipe.

The spring rolls I used are made from rice flour, water, and salt. They come in a round package and are very hard. To soften them you simply take one and turn it in a bowl of warm water. It softens right up and is pliable to work with.

Santa Fe Spring Rolls:

Step 1: Preheat oven to 375°F and prepare a baking pan with parchment paper. Once rice paper is pliable, place on flat surface and spoon in bean mixture just off-center.

santa fe spring roll step 1

Step 2: Fold up bottom end of paper to cover mixture.

santa fe spring roll step 2

Step 3: Fold in both right and left sides of paper.

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Step 4: Gently roll up the paper into a roll and place on prepared baking pan and spray the tops with olive oil.

santa fe spring roll step 4

Here’s the kicker…since this was my first time ever working with rice paper, I had no idea how long to bake these. We baked the rolls for about 20 minutes and then switched the oven to low broil where they sat for another 10 minutes. Since the inside did not need to be cooked for any reason, our biggest intention was to crisp up the rice paper.

If I were to do it again I would still probably bake it for 20 minutes, and broil for 10, but I would flip the rolls half way through the broiling process to crisp up both sides.

But anyway, the result was a very tasty sinless meal. I served the rolls with a side of Parkers Farm mild salsa.

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They were definitely very crunchy too! This was a fun change of pace meal for us. BTW before I prepared these rolls I devoured a load of broccoli and hummus, so that was part of my dinner too.

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The rest of the evening was spent being pretty lazy on the couch. I made myself a bowl of FAGE 0% fat Greek Yogurt with fresh Driscoll’s strawberries and blackberries.

It was a nummy day!

Fage with driscolls berries

I have some fun plans on the agenda today including a hot date with a girlfriend of mine!  I am super duper excited. I hope you all have a fabulous day and I will check back in with you very soon.

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Comfy Belly Soup

After yesterday’s morning run to test drive my new shoes, the verdict is in. The Brooks are keepers! After 3 trips to Marathon Sports and a lot of patience from the staff, I finally found a shoe that is comfortable, supportive, and lightweight.
I had made the decision to run inside on the treadmill versus outside so that I could test out the shoes and keep them in good shape just in case I didn’t like them and needed to return them.
From here on out, the majority of my runs will be outside so that I can prepare my lungs and my body for the coldness that will be at the 10K I’m running on January 1st.
No more shorts until next year. Sayonara!
Speaking of cold, even though it’s been pretty darn chilly around here, I am still making myself a smoothie now and again for breakfast. Yesterdays was particularly amazing and it was suggested to me by my friend and fellow blogger Shannon.
In this smoothie:
Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Breeze
1 ripe banana
1 large scoop of Parkers Farm PB
1/2 packet of Jay Robb’s chocolate egg white protein powder
Shannon usually includes spinach in hers too but I didn’t have any on hand so I omitted it this time.
The result…a smoothie that tastes like a peanut butter cup. It doesn’t get much better than that. I ate it with a spoon to make it last longer. 🙂 I LOVE the chocolate flavored egg white protein powder.
This bad boy held me over for a very long time. It’s the perfect combination of carbs, fat, and protein.
Moving on to dinner.
On Monday I started preparing for what would be leftover turkey and veggie soup. I saved the remains of the turkey (aka the carcass but I don’t love that word) so that I could try my hand at boiling it to make broth. This was my first attempt at making soup from leftover turkey btw. We didn’t have a pot quite big enough to house our 20 lb’er but I was still able to plunk some of it into a hot water bath.
As it bathed for a while, it softened a bit and I was able to push it down into the water a little more. I let it simmer on low for about 2 hours, then removed the turkey from the broth and placed it onto a cutting board. I placed the turkey broth (covered) in the fridge after it cooled down and it sat there to cool overnight.
On the cutting board, I began working on my turkey; salvaging any non-fatty pieces of meat on the bone. Being that I’m not a huge meat person, this job was a little on the gross side for me, but I made it through. Once I gathered my turkey meat, I gave it a chop, and refrigerated it for the night.
Don’t forget to save the wish bone!
Next, I chopped 1 cup of carrots, onions, and celery, and 2 cloves of garlic, and sautéed them lightly for about 5 minutes. I added 1 teaspoon of sage and some cracked black pepper during the last minute of saute time. I then let these cool and placed them in the refrigerator overnight.
Come Tuesday morning I removed the broth from the fridge. The fat had gathered on the top of the broth and hardened so that it is easier to scoop out. I scooped out the majority of it using a slotted spoon, added in the prepared turkey and veggies, popped in a bay leaf, covered it and let it simmer for an hour. I then added 1 cup of frozen green peas, a dash of garlic powder, onion powder, and salt and pepper to taste. I let the soup simmer for 5 more minutes.
Soup is on! Not the most attractive photo ever; I miss my natural light in the evening!
Such a healthy bowl of soup to comfort any belly. It really adds a lot of flavor to make your own turkey broth. We had a ton of leftovers so I froze the soup in individual serving size bags for another day or for when we’re feeling under the weather. If you wish you could add in whole wheat pasta or brown rice to add a little more “staying power” to this soup. I enjoyed it just as is but did end up needing a snack later in the evening.
I am happy it’s Wednesday. I didn’t sleep too well last night but have a lovely cup of jo by my side as I write who is really helping me perk up. It’s not that I need coffee in the morning, I just really enjoy it and am comforted by it. I look forward to it every morning.
Have a great day my friends! Catch up with you soon.
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Mmm mmm Turkey Chili

Happy mid-way through the work week day aka Hump Day! 🙂

I worked late yesterday therefore don’t really have any catching up to do from yesterday, BUT I do want to catch you up from Monday. I keep getting so behind on my posts but you don’t mind that I have to rewind a day or two do you?!

Monday

I’ve really been loving this combo lately: one banana topped with Parkers Farm creamy peanut butter and Peanut Butter & Co Dark Chocolate Dreams. Mmm mmm that’s the stuff.

I had a bucket load of things to do including doctor visits, a haircut, Target run, and most importantly, using some of my birthday money (which I got early) to go shopping for a few new items.

I can proudly say that I bought four items at TJMaxx: three were clearance items and this sweater below was regular price.

I loathe trying on clothes at the actual store. I prefer to purchase items, take them home and try them on, and return them if necessary. Of course if the store isn’t conveniently located near my home, I go a different route. Anyway, I went home and tried on the four items and it turns out I love them all, however I am going to return an oversized sweater which would be so comfortable if it weren’t so itchy. I can’t handle itchy or uncomfortable anything, so back it goes. I’d say 3 out of 4 isn’t bad though right?!

Lunch

Once lunch time rolled around I pulled together this beautiful thing. We have a mixed green salad with blackberries, chicken, feta cheese, walnuts, and Ken’s Lite Poppy Seed dressing. Oh, and avocado. Goodness, I can’t forget the avocado. This salad was fabulous.

I did end up getting a half hour walk in but the walk was done on the treadmill this time around. On Monday it was a whopping 28°F or so here so I thought I would stay warm and walk inside. I flipped the TV back and forth between Ellen and Paula Deen. I was a happy camper.

Big news! I am hosting Thanksgiving at my house this year! This will be my first time ever hosting as well as my first time ever preparing turkey. I am planning the menu and getting super excited about it! More to come on that.

Check out my new kicks! On Sunday actually, Dana and I headed over to Marathon Sports in Minneapolis because we both needed some new running shoes. We had our other pair since March and we were both starting to feel some discomfort in our feet after runs, so we declared it time for new shoes. You don’t have to twist my arm for new shoes!

I stuck with the Asic Gel Kayano 19. The 19 is a little bit lighter than the 18 yet still provides cushioning, not to mention I LOVE the colors! Score.

On to dinner. We’re talking comfort on what was a pretty cold Minnesota day. What does that call for?

CHILI! I pulled a bag of garden tomatoes from the freezer which I had peeled and froze this summer. I threw a handful ingredients into a pot, let them all simmer together for a couple of hours, and something magical happened. I am excited to share this recipe because it was such a wing-it one for me and turned out just FANTASTIC! Mmm mmm!


Turkey Chili
Print
Ingredients
  • 4½ cups pureed tomatoes
  • ⅓ lb lean ground turkey, browned
  • 1-15 oz. can chili beans
  • 1-15 oz. can red kidney beans
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Tbsp. chili powder
  • ½ Tbsp. cumin
  • ½ Tbsp. garlic powder
  • ½ Tbsp. salt
  • 1-2 tsp. black pepper
  • Optional toppings:
  • fresh cilantro
  • shredded cheddar cheese
  • avocado
Instructions
  1. Combine all soup ingredients into medium pot; stir to combine.
  2. Cover and let simmer on low for two hours, stirring occasionally.
  3. Ladle into soup bowls and top with avocado, cilantro, and cheese (optional).

One last bit of exciting news…My 27th birthday is this Friday and I am lucky enough to be celebrating it in Georgia this weekend with some amazing friends! We will be staying with these two foxy individuals…

I am SOOO excited! I can’t wait! I miss them so much.

Geez I’ve noticed this post turned a little bit random but that’s okay! Alright, I am off to take on the day. Take care my friends.

 

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Hearty Lentils with Spinach

Hello there! Happy Sunday my friends. What’s everyone have on the agenda? Resting and relaxing or running errands and prepping for the week ahead? Whatever it may be I hope it’s a good one so far!

I still have yet to recap the second part of our Colombia vacation but I was really itching to write a “normal” post plus I have a recipe I want to share with you all, so the second recap will have to wait a little while longer. Here’s the Miami recap, and Colombia Part I recap if you’re interested.

I have a little bit of catching up to do from Friday first so we’re going to be starting off there right at lunch time. To celebrate my birthday (a week early) my co-workers and I went out to Houlihan’s for lunch. I received a free $15 coupon for my birthday to the restaurant so that’s why we decided to go there.

I ordered the french onion soup and a caesar salad with grilled chicken and polenta croutons. I was very happy with both of my selections.

Tasty!

Moving on to dinner…

This is your forewarning that the meal you are about to see is one of the most unappetizing dishes ever to appear on BN. However, I promise you that although unappealing to the eyes, it is very appealing to the palate.

Hearty Lentils with Spinach.

After I plated the lentils over the spinach, I stirred the warm lentils into the spinach and decided that I liked it that way better.

Oh yes I am falling in love with lentils. First the Curry Stew and now this.

Hearty Lentils with Spinach
Print
Ingredients
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 1 cup carrots, chopped
  • 1½ cups lentils
  • ¾ tsp. garlic powder
  • ½ tsp. ginger powder
  • ¾ tsp. cumin
  • ½ tsp. curry
  • ¼ tsp. paprika
  • 1 Tbsp. brown sugar
  • 3 cups reduced sodium chicken broth*
  • 3 cups spinach
  • *Use vegetable broth if cooking vegetarian
Instructions
  1. In a medium saucepan, saute onions and carrots on stovetop for 3 minutes.
  2. Add in spices and stir.
  3. Add in chicken broth, stir, reduce heat to simmer, cover and let simmer for 2 hours; stirring occasionally.
  4. Before serving, add spinach and stir in until it wilts into lentils.
  5. Serve hot.

It’s such a hearty and healthy dish that I truly enjoyed (and Dana did too).

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Saturday

I enjoyed two cups of Dunkin Donut’s Pumpkin Spice coffee with hazelnut creamer to kickstart my morning.

Have you tried this stuff?! If you haven’t please go buy some. You won’t regret it. NUM.

Next was breakfast. I topped one banana half with Parkers Farm creamy peanut butter and the other half with Peanut Butter & Co’s Dark Chocolate Dreams peanut butter. Yes it is a dream how good that stuff is. A dangerous dream. Thanks to Peanut Butter & Co. for sending me some coupons for their heavenly product.

I gave breakfast time to settle while watching two episodes of Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations, Dominican Republic and Maine. Both episodes were great. His humor cracks me up.

Then it was time to lace up and head out the door and face the dreary morning with a run. Moose surely didn’t care that it was drizzly and dreary, he was so ready to go. We trekked through the neighborhood and covered about 4 miles.

The rest of the day was spent cleaning up the house, “helping” Dana dig out the window well to prepare for egress windows so that we can finish our basement at some point, putting the patio furniture away for the season, hanging out with Moose, and baking up a treat for the worker crew.

Recipe to come soon!

I hope you’re having an excellent weekend. Catch up with you all later!

 

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Broccoli White Bean Soup

Hi there! How is everyone’s weekend panning out so far?

Friday was a great day. It began with a perfectly ripe banana with peanut butter that I tossed in the microwave for 20 seconds to make drizzly, and a little bit of honey.

I did a couple of odds and ends around the house while anxiously awaiting Kate’s arrival. Oh yes, my friend who is in town that I mentioned yesterday is the wonderful Kate. She was one of my bridesmaids, we were roommates in college, and our friendship goes back to 8th grade.

She recently moved out of state and I miss her dearly. She’s home for the weekend so we made plans to go for a nice long walk around the neighborhood and enjoy the gorgeous fall weather.

Before we headed out, I snacked on a LARABAR Über Roasted Nut Roll bar. The kind folks of LARABAR sent me these four to sample.

The verdict on the Über? MMMmmm, so good! It tasted like a healthy version of a salted nut roll. Yes, please. I’m excited to try the rest of the flavors! It did a nice job of holding me over for a couple of hours too.

Kate and I were out for over an hour, walking and talking, catching up, and taking in the beautiful sights and smells of fall. It made me so incredibly happy to see her. It was bittersweet saying good bye as always, BUT I will be seeing her again in about one month because I will be journeying out to Georgia to visit her! I can’t wait! I love love love her, my Katie boo boo boo. 🙂

Throughout the afternoon I tackled random projects around the house. I organized the front closet, did some laundry, reorganized our kitchen, and brought up wedding gifts that we still had in the basement that we now have room for upstairs.

Then it was time to get dinner brewing. On the menu: Broccoli White Bean Soup. While I got to concocting the soup, Dana got to work making a fire in the fireplace. Our first one of the season.

So pretty! A short while later, dinner was served and it was enjoyed in front of the fire.

Warm soup in front of the fire in my sweatpants with my hubby and dog. Does it get more comforting than that? The soup turned out fantastic. I am very proud of it and excited to share the recipe with you all.

Broccoli White Bean Soup
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Recipe type: Dairy-Free; SCD-Friendly
Serves 3-4
Ingredients
  • 1 cup onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups cooked cannellini beans or other white bean
  • ½ Tbsp. dried thyme
  • dash of nutmeg
  • ½ tsp. garlic powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 32 ounces lower sodium chicken broth*
  • 3 cups broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
  • Parmesan cheese (optional)
  • Diced turkey bacon (optional)
  • *substitute vegetable broth if vegetarian
Instructions
  1. Use olive oil to lightly coat medium soup pot.
  2. Add onion and garlic; saute for 3-5 minutes.
  3. Add beans, thyme,nutmeg, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and broth; mix well.
  4. Use immersion blender to puree onions and beans in the pot.
  5. Add broccoli, cover, and let simmer for 15 minutes.
  6. Use immersion blender and pulse 1-2x to puree some of the broccoli, but leaving most of the pieces whole.
  7. Spoon soup into bowls, and top with parmesan cheese and bacon (optional).

The rest of the night was spent relaxing with the men of the house, eating some cocoa banana soft-serve, and hitting the hay early.

Now, I am ready to take on another productive day. I hope you all have a snazzy Saturday!

xoxo, M

 

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