Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Little Foodie in the Garden

This summer was our first summer having a real garden!!! We have horrible sandy soil where we live and a very shady yard so my hubby built me a wonderful wooden garden box and trimmed a lot of branches so we could finally have a garden. Because of the shade our garden has been slow to produce but we are now getting lots of tiny tomatoes. Little Foodie helped us build the garden box, fill it with compost from our compost bin, add soil, plant the seedlings and water it daily. Now she goes out every morning after breakfast to see how the garden is doing. This morning she came running in asking for a bowl because she needed to pick the "very red" little tomatoes so we could have some for dinner. When she came back I noticed the bowl looked a little empty with only 3 tomatoes in the bowl; Little Foodie said that she couldn't help herself, she had to eat the little tomatoes because they looked so yummy!! This is the first summer that Little Foodie will actually eat tomatoes, it has taken us several summers of insisting that she try them to get her to enjoy eating them. The more times you introduce a food item to your child the more likely they are to eat it and then enjoy eating it!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Quick and Easy Dinner- Grilled Quesadillas

Our air conditioning has decided not to work so I needed something to cook on the grill to keep the extra heat out of the house so I made Grilled Chicken Quesadillas. They are so easy and yummy and it made for a very quick clean-up.

Grilled Chicken Quesadillas

8 Flour Tortillas
Grilled chicken sliced into chunks
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Sour Cream and Salsa

Heat up your outdoor grill on high and then turn it down to medium. Place the plain tortillas on the grill and lightly grill each side, they will puff up a little. Once the tortillas are grilled on each side one by one place some chicken and cheese on half the tortilla and then fold it in half, pressing down to get it to stick together. Grill on each side for a few minutes but keep an eye on them so they do not burn. Enjoy with a little Organic Sour Cream and Salsa!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Amazing Muffins and a 7 Mile Bike Ride

Today I made a batch of fruit filled delicious muffins for breakfast; I used a recipe from the Cooking for Real show on the Food Network!! After breakfast Little Foodie went on her first bike ride on the trail without her training wheels, she did an AMAZING job she road for 7 miles and asked when we were going to do it again! A good/healthy breakfast goes a long way when you are 6 years old!!

Sunny Morning Muffins


  • 1 cup strawberries, chopped
  • 1 cup sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • Pinch ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 ripe banana, mashed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1/2 pint blueberries
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts


Special equipment: muffin tin and muffin liners

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a small bowl, mix together strawberries and 2 tablespoons sugar. Let sit 15 minutes until strawberries give off juices.

In a small bowl, mix together flour, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg and salt.

In a large bowl, whisk together the mashed banana, eggs, oil, 1 cup sugar, strawberries, and lemon zest.

Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until combined. Do not over mix. Fold in blueberries and walnuts.

Scoop batter evenly into muffin cups. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of muffin comes out with a few crumbs but not wet, about 30 minutes. Cool on a rack to room temperature.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Homemade Granola

Homemade Granola is one of our favorite snacks; we take it to the pool, on long car rides or munch on it while watching a movie; I also send a container of it to work with my husband to keep at his desk. Making your own Granola is SO MUCH HEALTHIER than buying it from the store, when you make it yourself you are in control of the amount of oil and sugar that go into it. When you decide to make Granola you need to have the time to babysit it, it takes a lot of watching while it is baking so it doesn't burn but once it finishes it is so yummy you won't mind that you had to stand around sweating while it bakes!!

Homemade Granola

4 C of Oats (not the quick cooking kind)
1 C of Olive Oil
1/2 C of Honey
1/2 C of Brown Sugar
Your Choice of Raw Nuts and Dried Fruit

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Mix the Oats, oil, honey, brown sugar and nuts (you will add the fruit once it is finished baking) in a large bowl; stir till everything is coated. You will need a baking sheet that has sides and grease it with a little olive oil. Dump the mixture onto the baking sheet and spread it out. Place it in the oven, it will bake for about 20-30 minutes but you will need to open the oven and check on it and re-spread it around about every 6-7 minutes so it gets evenly brown and toasty. Once it is finished mix in your choice of dried fruit and let cool before placing in an airtight container. Enjoy and make often!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pesto Chicken Salad Sandwich and Eggplant Fries

Having a Little Foodie in my life doesn't prevent me from hearing the dreaded "yuck I don't want that for dinner" or the always pleasant "this taste too spicy", the difference is that when I hear these phrases I acknowledge Little Foodies words and then I let her know that she will still be joining us for dinner; Little Foodie eats what we eat, no special kid meals at our house .
Last night for dinner I thought I was being clever creating a new version of french fries, Eggplant Fries which Little Foodie did like a lot but she was not impressed with the Pesto Chicken Salad because the garlic made it "too spicy". You can't please everyone all of the time!

Eggplant Fries

1 Med. Size Eggplant
One Egg
Bread Crumbs
Garlic Powder
Smoked Paprika
Parmesan Cheese
Olive oil

Peel Eggplant and cut into thick slices, the size of steak cut french fries; place the fries in a strainer and rinse and sprinkle on a good amount of salt, this is suppose to take the bitterness out of the eggplant, let the eggplant sit for an hour.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, Create a coating station, place the cracked/beaten egg in a dish in another dish mix together some bread crumbs, garlic powder, salt, paprika and shredded parmesan cheese. Dip the egg plant first in the egg then in the bread crumb mixture then place on an oiled baking sheet. Once all eggplant is coated place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, flipping the fries over after 15 minutes to crisp up each side. Enjoy dipped in a little marinara sauce!!

Pesto Chicken Salad

2 Grilled Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
2 T. of Mayo
2 Cloves of Garlic
Pesto (I made homemade Lemon Basil Pesto)

Cut the chicken breast into bits size chunks. Mix the chicken with the mayo, salt and pepper to taste, minced garlic and about 2 T of pesto. Enjoy on some homemade bread!!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Stuffed Green Peppers

I decided to use my farmer's market find to make a special celebration meal for my hubby, so I made Stuffed Green Peppers. I have never made this dish before so I looked up a few recipes and then kind of did my own version. Little Foodie was very impressed and said "hey mom you made an edible bowl", of course I took all of the credit for the invention of the edible bowl!!

Stuffed Green Peppers

4 Green Peppers (cut off the tops and clean out the inside)
1/2 pound of Ground Turkey
1 C of Instant Rice or precooked Jasmine Rice
1/2 of a Yellow Onion (diced)
2 Cloves of Garlic (sliced or minced)
Jar of any type of Tomato Sauce
Cheese ( we used fresh mozzarella)
Olive Oil

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Place a little olive oil in a skillet and cook the onions and garlic for a few minutes then add the ground turkey. Once the turkey is cooked completely add the rice and about a cup of tomato sauce. Place a little olive oil in the bottom of a baking dish and place the Green Peppers in the dish. Fill each Pepper with the Turkey/Rice mixture and top each with a little Tomato Sauce. Cover the dish with a lid or tinfoil and bake for 35 minutes. Remove lid/foil and top each Pepper with any type of cheese and bake for another 3-5minutes until cheese is melted. Enjoy!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

No Bake Cookies

What do you do when you are having a chocolate attack and you don't feel like heating up your house by turning on the oven? Of course you make a batch of No Bake Cookies!!! These cookies bring back memories from my childhood, my mom would whip up a batch of these in no time at all and they would be gone almost as fast as she made them.

No Bake Cookies
1/2 C of Organic Butter (its really important to buy organic dairy products!)
1 1/2 C of Sugar
1 tsp of Vanilla ( real kind not the imitation)
3-4 T. of Natural Peanut Butter
1/3 C of Cocoa Powder
1/2 C of Organic Milk
3 C of Quick Cooking Oats

In a large sauce pan melt the Butter. When the Butter is melted add the Milk,Sugar and Cocoa Powder and bring to a boil. Remove the pan from the heat and add the Peanut Butter and stir till it is melted. Next stir in the Vanilla and the the Oats. Place a large piece of wax paper on a counter top and use a tablespoon to drop the mixture into mounds on the wax paper. Let cool/harden and enjoy in moderation!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Roasted Beets with Goat Cheese

I LOVE pickled beets, I have loved them since I was a little girl and my mom would share her special jar of pickled beets with me and my sister. One day my Little Foodie saw me eating the strange purplish veggies on my salad and she asked to taste one and every since Little Foodie and I have been fighting over the jar of beets. While shopping at the Whole Foods (my favorite store in the ENTIRE world) Little Foodie spotted a dirty little veggie with green and purple leaves and I explained that this is what a beet looks like before it ends up in a jar for us to buy. Being the smart Little Foodie that she is she decided that we could make our own beets that would taste better than the beets in the jar. When we got home we rinsed off the beets and cut them open and Little Foodie was amazed by the bright pink color inside, if you have never peeled a beet try it and you will see what we are talking about; beware you hands will also turn a lovely shade of pink. When we recently visited a local pick-your-own farm Little Foodie was ecstatic when she found out we could pick our own beets, she pulled those beets out of the ground in record breaking speed!

Roasted Beets with Goat Cheese

5-10 Beets (peeled and cut into bite size chunks)
2 T. of Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to Taste
1 T of Red Wine Vinegar
Goat Cheese as much or a little as you like

Today I peeled the beets and then cut them into bite size chunks, then I put about 2 tablespoons of olive oil on a baking sheets and tossed those beautiful ruby colored chunks and gave them a good shake of salt and a little pepper. I roasted the beets in a 400 degree oven for about 25 minutes. When they were finished I let them cool, poured the beets along with the oil into a bowl and added a few splashes of red wine vinegar and some goat cheese, mixed it all up. Little Foodie LOVED the beets and can't wait to pick more!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

We LOVE Peaches!!!

My Little Foodie has never liked breakfast cereal, when asked if she wants cereal she usually responds "Cereal, people really eat that for breakfast how about....instead". This is why I am often found turning whatever fresh fruit we have in the house into some sort of muffin. This week I used the local peaches that I picked up a the Farmer's Market to make peach muffins and since I only have one muffin pan I turned the rest of the muffin batter into peach cake that we will eat with homemade vanilla ice cream.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Little Foodie makes Bread

Today my Little Foodie helped me make bread that we will use for sandwiches this week. She gets so excited when she sees me pull out the bread ingredients, she LOVES to knead the bread and when she helps me make bread it always turns out better. When my Little Foodie helps me cook/bake it makes me slow down a little and take my time as I explain each step to her in turn this helps my food turn out better because I am not rushing around. The bread we made today was so delicious, you can tell the difference between homemade bread and store-bought bread in one major way, I can't wait to throw away the ends of the bread when I buy from the store but when I make bread I save the ends for my own sandwiches because it tastes so yummy. Take a little time to bake some bread and you will fall in love with homemade bread and never go back to store-bought again :)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

A Visit to the Farmer's Market

It' amazing what $12 will buy you at the your local Farmer's Market. My garden is producing very slowly so I stop by my local Farmer's Market to pick up fresh, yummy produce. You can check with your local county/state website to find a Farmer's Market in your area.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Goat Cheese, Peaches and Pecans,Oh My!

My Little Foodie came home from visiting her cousins for a few days so I decided to make her something super yummy to welcome her home. I made a salad similar to the one that my husband and I had at a restaurant. I used butter lettuce, local goat cheese, raw pecans that I toasted in a dry skillet, peaches that I grilled with a little butter and honey and a homemade dressing using olive oil, apple cider vinegar and honey. My Little Foodie loved the salad especially the pecans! Butter lettuce is perfect for kids, it has a soft texture and the leaves have a nice shape and can be used to make roll-ups; my daughter would put a peach, some pecans and a little goat cheese in a leaf and then roll it up and eat it.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Baltimore Peach Cake

Last night I made a Baltimore Peach Cake to take to a friends house for dinner, there is nothing better than the smell of peaches and cinnamon. The cake was a big hit and I think I am going to have a piece for breakfast this morning. I adapted the recipe for Baltimore Peach Cake from the recipe found at


  • 2 1/2 c Organic White Flour
  • 1 T Organic Butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 c Organic 1% Milk
  • 2 tsp Cinnamon
  • 1 c Sugar
  • 3 tsp Baking powder
  • 2 T Organic Butter, melted
  • 1/2 c Sugar, mixed with cinnmon
  • 5 Large Organic peaches, peeled/sliced

  1. Preheat oven to 350. With electric mixer, blend first six ingredients. Spread in greased and floured 13x9" pan. Sprinkle half of cinnamon/sugar mixture lightly over dough base. Arrange peach slices by rows on top of base. Sprinkle with remainder of cinnamon/sugar mixture and drizzle melter butter over all. Bake for 25-30 minutes.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

All I Can Say is YUM!

Yesterday was my husbands 32nd birthday and being the wonderful and very picky man that he is he planned out the entire day including a meal at Brewer's Art that would make anyone's tongue happy!! We picked 4 appetizers to share, the Rosemary Fries (the most delicious fries you will ever eat), the Tortilla Soup with lime cream (my mouth is watering just thinking about it), steamed mussels and the most amazing a simple salad with butter lettuce, toasted pecans, goat cheese and grilled peaches. My little one missed out on the dinner but I can't wait to make the salad for her this weekend and I may add a little grilled chicken to round it out and make a meal of it. Nothing better than a happy tongue and tummy!