Tag Archives: spinach

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

With Summer upon us, grilling (or BBQ) season is starting. One of our favorite recipes is this stuffed portobello recipe, which we have already tried out 🙂


Ingredients (original recipe source: Weight Watchers)

3 Portobello Mushrooms
1/4 cup Goat cheese or feta cheese crumbed (I use soft)
Bunch of fresh Spinach
Tbsp of fresh basil
1 Tbsp Spring onions (scallions)
2 Tbsp Bread crumbs
2 Tbsp Chicken stock
1 tsp olive oil
Pinch of salt
Pinch of fresh cracked pepper

  • Finely chop the mushroom stems. Combine the chopped stems, the spinach, cheese, bread crumbs, scallion, chicken stock, basil, oil, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl.
  • With a small spoon, stuff each mushroom cap with the spinach mixture; place in a single layer in a 9 x 13-inch grill platter.
  • Drizzle with 1-2 Tbsp water around the mushrooms in the pan. Grill for 15-20 minutes on the Grill element.
  • Bake until the cheese is melted and the filling is hot. Serve at once.


Garden update + Meal plan {04.14.2013}


Finally, Spring arrived and we have had an amazing amount of pollen fall this week. This picture was my attempt to try and sweep the pollen of the deck. Yes, all that yellow dust is pollen. I have lived in several places, and North Carolina is the only place I have seen this visible layer of pollen.

Good news, with the warmer weather, my winter vegetable garden has taken off. I picked the first lot of spinach, which we made into a salad for dinner tonight.

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My first head of broccoli is nearly ready, I am thinking I can harvest it over the next day or two.
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The cabbages, carrots and cauliflower are coming along. We tried a couple of the carrots but they are still quite small – the rest of these will be ready in the next 3-4 weeks.


Our meal plan this week includes some of our fresh vegetables, which saved us a little money. I did really well this week with staying away from sugar and process foods. I even got outside one lunch, at work, to exercise !!!

Saturday Granola + Soy Yoghurt + Banana Beef tips (from meat house) + Spinach salad
Sunday Whole wheat banana buttermilk Pancakes Broccoli + Tomato Fettuccine (GF) Walk 3-4 miles
Monday Bircher Muesli “Fried” Rice (Brown rice and vegetables – prepared over the weekend)
Tuesday Berry + Banana + Spirulina Smoothie Vegetarian Burgers + Salad 3-4 Mile Walk
Wednesday Bircher Muesli Zpizza (Pizza with whole wheat crust and organic ingredients) 20 mins. HIT
Thursday Granola + Fruit + Soy Yoghurt Vegetable Pasta Bake (prepared over the weekend)
Friday Berry + Banana + Spirulina Smoothie Grilled fish + salad 20 mins. HIT

We are usually spending ~$70 a week only, for our meals. This week we were well under…here is our shopping list:

  • Strawberries (TJ)
  • Blueberries (TJ)
  • Bananas (TJ)
  • Baby carrots (TJ)
  • Mushrooms (TJ)
  • Lettuce (TJ)
  • Tomatoes (TJ)
  • Soy Milk (TJ)
  • Low-fat herb cream cheese (TT)
  • Juice (TJ, TT)
  • Brown Rice (TJ)
  • Gluten Free Pasta (TT)
  • Vegetable Stock (TT)
  • Onions (TJ)
  • Spinach (from the garden)
  • Broccoli (from the garden)
  • Bell Peppers(TJ)
  • Cucumber (TJ)
  • Garlic (TT)
  • Apples (TJ)
  • Butter (TJ)
  • Flour/ WW and GF (TT)
  • Granola (TT or BJ)
  • Oats (BJ)
  • Frozen Peas + Corn (TJ)
  • Vegetable Patties (TJ)
  • Sultanas (TT)
  • Stir Fry Sauce (TT)

NOTE: We shop majority at Trader Joe’s (TJ), Target (TT) with an occasional visit to Whole foods (WF), BJ’s , Harris Teeters (HT), Lowes Food (LF) and Fresh Market (FM).
NOTE: We do not typically use coupons mainly due to time.
NOTE: Items indicated by * are specials for the week we took advantage of.

How are your vegetable gardens going? What meals do you have planned this week? Leave a link in the comments below and I will check them out.

Slow-cooked Vegetable Dal

I love Indian food – its one of my favorite food choices. This vegetable dal recipe worked great with my current life style challenge. It has lots of flavor and is loaded with vegetables.



  • 1-2 cups red lentils
  • 1 can tomatoes
  • 1-2 cup vegetable stock
  • 2 cups spinach
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp garam masala

Add all the ingredients to the slow-cooker, cook on low for 6-8 hours. Serve either in a bowl by itself or over rice (I use brown rice). Nice and easy 🙂

Summer Herb Pesto

The basil in our garden went chaotic this year and I needed to find a good use for it. Everyone suggested Pesto. I found a great recipe on allrecipes.com. I am not a huge fan of pesto – it is a little too strong, but the spinach and other herbs in this recipe complement the taste and makes the pesto a little more subtle. All the herbs came from our garden.


I made two batches and it looks like I will still have a third batch before my basil is done :-). I froze my pesto into 2 inch ice cubes (this large ice cube container I found at Crate and Barrel but it is now available at West Elm as well). I plan on defrosting them into small glass containers for Christmas gifts.


We also used the fresh pesto to make tortellini pasta with a pesto sauce, and a chicken pizza with pesto sauce. Both were great but I preferred the pizza.


A few of my favorite things: Savory Breakfast

When I think of a savory breakfast, I would have to say an egg needs to be in my breakfast. I love eggs especially poached but I will take them scrambled, over medium (white cooked, yellow runny), or a boiled egg (again like my white cooked and yellow runny).

Some folks find poaching an egg difficult. I am especially picky with them and don’t like them to have a very strong vinegar taste to them (using vinegar stops the whites from spreading – you add it to the boiling water). I actually found these cool silicone poach egg pods which you place your egg into, then once the water is boiling add the pod into the water. You get the perfect semi-circle shaped poached egg, and no vinegar taste – PERFECT!!!

The first of my recipes, no surprise uses poached eggs.

Breakfast Open Sandwich

Ingredients (serving size: 1)

1/2 english muffin
1/4 avocado
2-3 slices tomato
2 slices Canadian bacon
few leaves of spinach
1 poached egg
salt and pepper

I start with boiling the water for the poached egg. As I am using the poached egg pods above – I follow their instructions for cooking the egg. I leave it in the water ~5-6 minutes in the pods.

While the egg is cooking, add two pieces of Canadian bacon to a fry pan and cook; toast the english muffin in the toaster.

Once these steps are completed, spread the avocado on the muffin. I stack the sandwich then, in this order:
Canadian Bacon
Poached egg

Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Breakfast Bratkartoffeln (Fried Potatoes)

I discovered one of my all time favorite meals in a “pub-like” restaurant Vetters Brauhaus in Heidelberg, Germany – the meal is called Bratkartoffeln. The fried potatoes are fried in a cast iron skillet in probably bacon fat and topped with fried eggs.

This recipe is a twist on that, a light and healthy version that makes a great breakfast or brunch item

Ingredients (serves 1-2)

1 Tbsp Olive oil
2/3 cup frozen grated potato (in the US – Ore-Ida Country Style hash browns)
1/2 cup grated zucchini
1/2 bell pepper, chopped (green works best)
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
2 slices Canadian Bacon, chopped
1 tsp dried Paprika
1/2 tsp dried Thyme
Salt and Pepper (to taste)
1 Egg (Poached or Fried)
Chives (optional)

Add the olive oil to a heated fry pan, add the frozen potatoes (Hash browns) – stand back a little in case of initial spitting of the olive oil when add the potatoes.  Leave for approximately 1 minute just to defrost the potatoes a little.

Add the zucchini, onion, bell pepper to the potatoes. Spread the ingredients across the fry pan surface. Try not to flip the contents often – it will become mushy if you do. Sprinkle paprika, thyme and salt and pepper over the contents. Cook until the potato mixture until it starts to turn golden brown on the bottom and flip the mixture.

Add the Canadian bacon. Again once the bottom starts to turn a golden color flip the potatoes one last time. Once cooked, plate the potatoes (could split for two if you want – add an extra egg if you do), add the poached or fried egg on the top. Sprinkle a little salt, pepper and chives on top of the egg and server immediately.

NOTE: I love the yolks of my egg running over the potatoes… if you break the yolk and it spreads over your potatoes it tastes fantastic!!