Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice

Pineapple Chicken Fried Rice

If your mouth was throwing a party, fresh pineapple, curry powder, and sticky rice would be the superstars on the invite list.  I love EVERYTHING about those three.  Combine them together AND I won’t stop eating until either my stomach bursts or I run out of food.  Whichever comes first. Remember our heart to heart about rice in my Steak Stir-fry recipe?  Let me put my hands on your shoulders just in case I need to shake you in a minute.  Sticky rice is the only way to go.  Not only will it make you look like a master chopstick user, but the quality is MILES above the rest. Just to make sure you don’t get mushy instead of sticky, I suggest buying rice in packaging you can’t read because it’s all in characters.  I really like the Homai brand at Costco.  Here are a couple of Amazon’s top picks.  I’m actually excited to try the Tamanishiki.  It sounds legit!  It’s worth investing in some quality rice. I lived in Taiwan for 18 months over 8 years ago.  Even though time has past, my mouth has a great memory. How could it forget juice running down my chin after gracefully (HA!) biting into a fresh mango? Or the creamy peanut butter that resembled dessert more than a nut butter?  Seriously… why does Taiwan’s taste so much better than ours? BUT, one of my most favorite dishes was pineapple fried rice. Let’s just say I don’t think 99% of Taiwan’s ‘restaurants’ would pass FDA’s safety laws.  You purchase most meals from street food vendors.  The tried and tested method for preventing food contamination was having a fan turned on high with a couple...
Quinoa and Tomato Stuffed Bell Peppers

Quinoa and Tomato Stuffed Bell Peppers

Since my stuffed zucchini recipe, I intently assess every vegetable with hopes of eventually stuffing it. Veggies stuffed with other veggies smothered with cheese.  Sign me up!  Bell peppers obviously beg to be stuffed since they form a little bowl once hollowed out.  Now… let’s go stuff these bad boys with some good stuff. My husband is not exaaaaactly a quinoa enthusiast.  Shame.  However, I always get a little burst of excitement when he doesn’t like something.  It’s like an intense game of chess where I move one ingredient here and another there and before you know it… checkmate!  He’s falling in love with something he previously hated like these sneaky quinoa scrumptious stuffed peppers. Why did I use a chess analogy?  I’m seriously horrible, and he always beats me.  I’m way too competitive to admit my subpar chess abilities to him…. so let’s just keep this between you and me. For my fellow quinoa admirers, do not pass go, do not collect $200, and go directly to my balsamic quinoa salad!  Now that it’s finally warming up (I kid you not… we had a foot of snow dumped two weeks ago), you’ll want to whip up this recipe the first time you fire up the grill for the season. Okay… chess?  Monopoly?  I’m getting way off track.  Peppers, Kami.  Talk about the amazingly delicious stuffed bell peppers!   Okay, just a couple parting tips before you get to the recipe.  Depending on how large and how much you stuff your peppers, you may need to adjust the baking time.  You only need to bake long enough until the ground beef or turkey is thoroughly cooked....
Easy Sausage, Potato, and Carrot Stew

Easy Sausage, Potato, and Carrot Stew

If you want an easy, quick, last minute dinner idea, stop right here on this easy sausage stew.  I FREQUENTLY make this for dinner.  And when I say frequently… I mean almost every week.  I keep waiting for my family to revolt and scream out protests of having to eat this dinner one. more. time.  BUT there’s not even ONE sign of disappointment when I whip this out on those just-be-happy-the-house-is-still-standing days. It’s pretty easy to always have the ingredients on hand for this sausage stew.  I’m really loving Al Fresco’s chicken sausage right now.  There’s a wide variety of sweet to spicy flavors along with minimal processing.  I find mine for $4 or less at Winco.  I stock up and throw them in the freezer when I get home.  It’s precooked and easy to add into recipes like my Chicken Sausage and Rice Soup. Also, I buy bulk organic carrots and sweet potatoes at Costco.  I’m slowly being converted to all organic produce because I can TASTE a huge difference.  It’s like having garden fresh fruits and vegetables.  Not to mention skipping out on all the nasty chemicals and pesticides.  Don’t believe me?  Do your own taste test.  Since organic carrots are pretty cheap, start by getting some regular fresh carrots and some organic carrots.  Compare the color, quality, and taste.  You’ll quick understand why I’ve become a believer in organic! Okay, I don’t want to keep you any longer.  If you’re making this recipe, you must be short on time.  BUT thank goodness that doesn’t mean you have to be short on a good dinner.  Here are the spices I use. Print Yum...
Chicken Sausage and Rice Soup

Chicken Sausage and Rice Soup

Although I’m loving the warm weather, I may have shed a tear that soup season is coming to a close.  Wait… was that a tear or are my eyes non-stop watering from allergies?  Either way… I had to squeeze in this chicken sausage and rice soup one last time. When it comes to soup, my husband is pretty picky.  He likes hearty meals and feels most soups are well… girly food.  It’s not that he doesn’t like the taste, he just rarely gets full off of soup.  When he doesn’t like to eat something, he might as well triple-dog-dare me.  Game on, honey, game on. I’ve played around with this recipe a few times.  I found the additional spice from the crushed red pepper to be the cherry on top.  He LOVED it!  Direct quote, “okay, I think you finally made a man’s soup… I’m getting seconds.” A major part of healthy cooking is using quality ingredients.  I can’t emphasize the importance of reading ingredients!  Take two extra seconds, flip the package over, and read what ingredients are actually making up the food your purchasing.  You’ll be surprised what junk is thrown in our foods. I like Pacific Natural broths.  Especially the ‘cage free’ portion on the chicken broth.  Thank you documentary, Food, Inc.  I don’t know if I’m more scarred or informed after watching it.  Either way, I think we all need to open our eyes a little more about what we’re putting in our bodies.  Hence, my ‘reading all ingredients’ rule. Well, get ready for this fulfilling, satisfying, flavorful, rich, and yummy-in-your-tummy chicken sausage soup.  It will be a winner!...
Baked Stuffed Zucchini

Baked Stuffed Zucchini

This is one of my all time favorite quick dinners.  It takes 30 minutes to prepare and these stuffed zucchini boats are juicy and packed with the perfect savory combination of flavors. Like I said, I’ve thrown this dinner together too many times to count.  Here’s a couple quick tips.  At this point, it’s become second nature to wash my vegetables prior to cooking or eating.  It sounds pretty strenuous and annoying to take time to wash every single fresh vegetable, right?  Nope.  It only takes 20 seconds and absolutely worth it to get the grime, dirt, wax, and who know what else off. Check out this post where you can visible see the difference between rinsing and washing your vegetables.  I love my Fit Vegetable Wash! So… scrub those zucchinis prior to preparing.     Once you’ve scooped out the insides, you can either discard them or throw them in a smoothie for dessert!   Sometimes I keep some leftovers of the meat mixture on purpose.  I love using it for quick burritos or scoop it on top FSTG tortilla chips.  Nom nom.  It’s super tasty.   Your family will love this one.  It passed my husband and 3 year old daughter taste test.  You’ll understand why we make this frequently on those busy days. PrintStuffed Zucchini Ingredients1 lb ground turkey/lean ground beef, browned 1 (15 oz) can organic diced tomatoes, drained 1 (15 oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed 1 and 1/2 cup frozen sweet corn 1 Tbs parsley 1 Tbs basil 1 tsp salt 1 tsp black pepper 3 organic zucchini, washed and cut lengthwise and insides...
Sweet Potato Shepard’s Pie

Sweet Potato Shepard’s Pie

“Mom, what’s for dinner?  Honey, what’s for dinner?  Self, what are we going to have for dinner?!?!”  On some days, this question can feel like a 50 lbs bag of stress.  Hopefully by now, you know I get you.  Although I love cooking (mostly eating), somedays I’m too tired and just don’t want to cook.  Take a deep breath with me and get ready for this ridiculously gorgeous, this-is-2015 healthy Shepard’s Pie casserole.  Pst… you can even double the batch and freeze one to eat on another crazy, busy, hectic day.     I have a problem.  I’m seriously addicted.  I love LOVE the bright, beautiful colors and flavors of vegetables.   Especially organic vegetables.  I know, I know, I’ve mentioned it before but I can totally taste the difference.  I was instantly converted when I had a horrible, chemical aftertaste when eating a carrot one day.  I only buy organic carrots from now on.   Costco makes it pretty easy to have large bags of frozen organic vegetables on hand.  Next trip, just stock up on organic frozen peas, frozen sweet corn, and a large bag of organic carrots.  I have plenty of go-to recipes that call for these tasty veggies.  Stick with me and I promise they won’t go to waste.       Just to make it even easier for you, here are ingredients I use.  My kitchen would feel naked without my large container of spices.  They last a long time (and store great) even though I’m using them constantly.  Spices punch out the natural flavors of the vegetables.  And it’s a much healthier option than to throw...

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