With a sick little-one this week, we spent more time at home than usual. This was a perfect opportunity to dive into my New Year’s Resolution to regaining some cooking inspiration! I am very excited for a class I signed up for at our local, natural market, called “Fast, Fresh, Organic on a Budget.” The basis of the class is how to use local, seasonal and organic ingredients and not break the bank. This is a description we strive towards, but it doesn’t always happen. The organic part is fairly easy, but trying to keep within budget AND buy locally and seasonally, is where I tend to veer off course. As you can see below, we love our avocados…all year long. *sigh*
I do love to cook (and bake), but if I’ve been going strong for a while, the passion tends to diminish. Like many people these days, I find most of my new recipes on-line, but I’m still a sucker for a good cook book. So what I try to do, is sit down on Sunday evening, surround myself with lots of resources and create a weekly menu. Then, with a thorough list in hand, head to the store to stock up (or I use Amazon Fresh delivery). Then I try to make it through the week with my cooking enthusiasm intact.
We go through a lot of granola in this house. So I decided to start making my own. This recipe is from Feeding The Whole Family by Cynthia Lair, and I must say, it has been a huge hit!
This quiche was made with the idea to make something I knew my kids would eat. At the moment our almost-5-year-old will eat close to anything (or at least try anything) and our “baby” who used to be an adventurous eater, is now a very picky almost-3-year-old. Go figure. But she loves eggs…and cheese….and ham…and believe it or not, they both like asparagus (sometimes). Laying it on top like this, makes it easy to pull off if they are not in the mood for something green.
The quiche was served with this salad, which is an old favorite: A small amount of lettuce and large amounts or avocado, palmitos (heats of palm), tomato, a little red onion and a basic balsamic vinaigrette.
Okay, I honestly don’t remember what is in this chili, but it was so yummy. I loaded the crock pot that morning and some kind of magic happened. It has a little bit of chicken in it (left over from a previous meal), a lot of beans, some corn, tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, cumin…oh, a jar of mild salsa, I think. You get the picture, right? Corn bread muffins and the toppings made it ultimate comfort food.
I wanted to make the ricotta banana muffins from the post earlier this week, but forgot to buy ricotta cheese at the store. Bummer. I didn’t think my bananas would last another day, so chocolate chip banana bread went in the oven. I like putting the chocolate chips on top like this, because I can serve it to the kids with or without chocolate.
Besides the items pictured above, the weekly menu included a pasta & veggie dish with an Asian ginger dressing (below) and the usual suspects, chicken and salmon. It has been a busy, hectic, keep-going-till-you-drop, kind of week around here – on all levels. Yes, the food gives us fuel to keep up with the pace, so to speak, but most importantly it gives us time to connect. That ever-important time to come together, rest our minds and ask “how was your day?” That is, until the 2-year-old flies out of her chair and does circles around the table. It’s bound to happen. Happy eating!