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Author Archives for nomastehungry

About nomastehungry

I'm thirty, hungry, and probably doing yoga :)

Roasted Broccoli Baked Mac and Cheese

Welcome to 2020: a year of uncertainty, unknown, and lack of clarity. This is also a new decade, with new memories to be made, new things to explore, new opportunities, and new experiences. It’s unfortunate what is happening in our world at this time, and while it takes us out of our comfort zones and forces us to isolate, we remember to cherish the time we have with our loved ones, FaceTime with family we can’t get to physically visit, and look for the silver lining: how lucky we are to be alive right now.

I decided to get back to simple and easy meals, some that really only require pantry or already-at-home items because while everyone stocked up on toilet paper, I was hopeful to just make sure I had enough milk, bread, and eggs in my home. I knew I wanted to make something equally delicious and comforting, so I opted for a staple: Macaroni and Cheese. My pantry always has pasta, heavy cream/milk. I had butter and flour, I also remembered I had some cheese in the house, as well as broccoli. To ramp up the fun in the MAC, I roasted broccoli and threw that in the mix too. It’s ok to drool on your screen, I won’t judge ya.

I love making pasta meals with veggies because it’s just a perfect balance of carbs: complex versus simple starch. Broccoli is a house favorite and we more often than not have it on hand at all times. I tossed the broc in some avocado oil, salt, and pepper and threw it in the oven to bake for 20 minutes, right at the peak of crispiness, since I knew it would cook more and soften in the oven with the pasta. It added a whole other dimension of salt and savory to this dish that I didn’t realize I needed – this will absolutely become a freezer staple in my house.

Ok, enough narrative, here’s the deal with this recipe:

  • For the MAC:
    • 1 pkg macaroni
    • 1 cup heavy cream
    • 1 1/2 cups broth (veggie or chicken)
    • 2 tbsp butter
    • 1/4 cup flour
    • 2-3 cups grated cheese (cheddar: sharp and mild)
  • For the broccoli:
    • 2 cups broccoli florets
    • 2 tbsp avocado oil
    • Salt
    • Pepper
  • Products used:
    • Organic Valley butter, heavy cream, cheese
    • Rao’s macaroni pasta
    • Chosen Foods avocado oil

Toss broccoli in avocado oil (or oil of your choice) and season with salt nd pepper. Bake at 375° for 20m.  Set aside. Boil pasta to al dente (2 minutes less than package).  Strain and set aside. For the cheese sauce, you’ll make a roux, which is flour and butter whisked together. Melt butter and whisk in flour to create a paste.  Add in heavy cream and stock. Bring to a boil then simmer.  Turn off heat and melt in cheese.  Using a oven-safe dish, pour in the drained pasta, then the broccoli, and then pour in the cheese sauce and mix, making sure the broccoli is dispersed evenly and the cheese sauce coats all the noodles.

Sprinkle a little bit more cheese on top and some breadcrumbs (totally optional). Bake for 10 minutes and broil for two to get a nice golden top. Serve and enjoy! PS. There will be leftovers, which is great for working from home 🙂

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Beef and Bean Chili

It’s March, and while it’s not necessarily Spring yet, it’s certainly starting to feel like it. I’ll also admit that I haven’t had my usual energy to do much cooking or prepping, so this week is about keeping things simple and delicious, and helping my husband not spend money on lunch everyday for the rest of the week. Nevertheless, chili is something that I have always loved making because you can virtually make anything into a chili. I have a traditional chili on the blog already, but decided to ramp this one up with black beans, garbanzo beans (chickpeas) and roasted corn, all ingredients easily found in Trader Joe’s. I must admit, I couldn’t stop “taste testing” this one as it simmered.

I’ll keep this blog post super simple and cut right to the ingredients and recipe directions, because mama’s tired and needs her sleep (after all, we only have 10 more days until bub is due and I’ll need as much sleep between now and then as possible!).

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb grass-fed ground beef
  • 1 28-oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1/2 yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 can rinsed and drained garbanzo beans
  • 1/2 can rinsed and drained black beans
  • 1 cup Trader Joe’s frozen roasted corn
  • 2-3 tbsp Chili powder
  • 2 tbsp Paprika
  • 2 tbsp cumin
  • 2 tbsp garlic powder
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • A shake of red pepper flakes

Directions:

  1. In a large pot (I love my Staub cocotte), add 1 tbsp of olive oil to the pot and turn the heat to medium. Add in chopped onions and saute until fragrant.
  2. Add in ground beef and brown until done. Add in can of crushed tomatoes, and seasonings (you’ll more than likely need more seasonings as the chili builds).
  3. Rinse and drain black beans and garbanzo beans, add them to the chili and stir to combine. Add in the cup of frozen corn and add a second round of seasonings (as desired, taste the chili first – when I did this I noticed it needed more smokey flavor so I added more chili powder).
  4. Turn heat to low/simmer and cook for another hour, stirring occasionally as to not burn the bottom.
  5. Serve with rice, potatoes, or quinoa!

Chocolate Chip Banana Oatmeal Squares

I’ve been into baking a lot more than I have been into actual cooking. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good ratatouille, or throwing together a really delicious chicken dinner or skillet. As of late, it’s been about baking, re-testing muffins, and building myself up to making cupcakes and all sorts of decadent treats. I’m not really into sugar-laden foods, which is why this blog exists: to take everyday delicious meals and recreate on the healthier side. Having simple swaps for recipes is important to me which is where these squares came from.

I like a brownie or blondie – in fact, my family actually has a “secret” recipe (why it’s always been considered a secret is beyond me but it’s a DELICIOUS cookie/blondie/brownie hybrid – it could also have been a long-time joke that it’s a secret and I’ve been misled all these 32 years… oh well). The sugar, butter, and heavy ingredients in those recipes can be too heavy for me at times, so using rolled oats is a great binder for flour. Plus, this recipe doesn’t have any sugar. The only sugar comes naturally from the chocolate chips, bananas, and a drop of maple syrup. Whole foods, real foods, and quality.

I also know that oats/oatmeal is a good food for lactation/breastfeeding, and given that I am 37 weeks and hoping to nurse the little bub, I’m testing recipes now so that I can bake them and freeze for when the bub arrives. Pregnant or not, I love oatmeal and the combination of chocolate chips with the banana is a trifecta of awesome.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 2 ripe bananas, smashes
  • 1 cup milk (can sub any kind of milk!)
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp baking soda
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup chocolate chips
  • Nutmeg
  • Cinnamon

Products Used:

  • Organic Valley: egg and milk
  • Lily’s Sweets: chocolate chips
  • Thrive Market: baking soda, rolled oats.

Preheat the oven to 400*. Whisk everything in one bowl. Pour into a pre-greased 9×9 pan, adding a few more extra chocolate chips on top. Bake for 30m. THAT IS IT! Enjoy with some nut butter, whipped cream, or just as is. You’ll be making these weekly 😉

Paleo Chicken Nuggets

Hi my name is Morgan and I am a five year old when it comes to chicken nuggets or tenders. Whenever hubby and I go to Citi Field for a Mets game (LGM!) I always get the same. exact. thing: Chicken tenders and french fries with a shake (from Shake Shack because duh…). I’ve ventured off the beaten path once and got a sausage and peppers, and the game wasn’t the same. What’s not to love about tenders and nuggets? They’re crispy, fried, juicy, and honey mustard makes for the perfect pairing. No questions asked.

I love using cassava flour to make nuggets, tenders, and cutlets because not only is it grain/gluten free, it’s provides such a depth of flavor from the yucca root itself. I use Thrive Market’s Cassava Flour – found here (also if you use the banner, you can get $20 shopping credit when you sign up for a membership!) and love the texture of it. Cassava is also super versatile and is usually a 1:1 ratio for subbing out AP flour when baking. The way the chicken crisps up when battered in cassava flour is very similar to using breadcrumbs.

Here’s what you’ll need for these paleo nuggets:

  • 3-4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup Thrive Market Non-GMO Cassava Flour (or preferred brand)
  • Dried oregano
  • Dried thyme
  • Dried rosemary
  • 4 tbsp avocado/olive oil
  • 3 tbsp grass fed butter
    • having a blend of healthy fats to shallow fry the chicken in helps with the crispiness and less splatter.
  • dipping sauce of choice
    • we used Cedar Foods tzatziki sauce.

For these nuggets, it’s as simple as a four-step process:

  1. Rinse and pat dry your chicken. Slice each breast into bite size pieces.
  2. Pour the cassava flour and dried spices into a large bowl and whisk to combine.
  3. Add chicken pieces to the flour and mix together to fully coat each piece.
  4. Heat a skillet/large pan with oil and butter on medium heat and begin to place several pieces into the skillet. Let each piece sit for 3-4 minutes per side. Repeat until all chicken is cooked.

I swear this will become a family favorite, and will definitely be a weeknight go-to as this is one simple and quick dinner to pull together, especially if you have the chicken cut ahead of time. This could be delicious as chicken alfredo, thrown in with some broccoli for a stir fry, or just as is with a dip and veggies on the side!

Blueberry “On the Go” Breakfast Muffins

It finally happened, I caught the plague. The frustrating part about being sick is that you think you’re getting better one day, and the next it comes back in full force with the worst nasal drip, cough, and congestion. Thankfully, I am on the mend and had enough energy to retest a recipe I’ve been dying to perfect: blueberry muffins.

I’m always trying to make recipes easier and easier, and not over complicate with a bunch of different ingredients, and the beauty of these muffins is that while there are at least 8 different ingredients that go into it, the amount of blueberries is not compromised, leaving the end result as perfectly moist with a texture similar to a store-bought muffin, except they’re relatively bite size, hence “on the go.” I’ll be making these in a rotation for sure now that I figured out the ratio of baking soda to baking powder.

Here’s what you’ll need for this recipe:

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
    • My dairy products are always Organic Valley products, and to learn a bit more about Organic Valley, head here.
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut sugar
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup avocado oil
  • 1 1/2 cup gluten free flour – I swear by Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Baking Flour, which can be found on the amazing Thrive Market
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • Salt
  • 1 cup blueberries

In a large bowl add in all of the wet ingredients and whisk/mix with a hand mixer until just combined. Add the dry ingredients into the wet and mix until just combined again. Fold in the blueberries and let the batter sit for a good 20-25 minutes. This will allow the baking soda and powder to marry and build a solid base for the muffin (this will also help the muffins rise instead of fall when they come out of the oven).

Preheat the oven to 375*. Spray your muffin tin or liners with non-stick spray. Use a cookie scoop or a large spoon to ladle the batter into the muffin tin and bake for 20-23 minutes. Cut one open, spread some almond butter or grass fed butter on them and you’ve got an amazingly delicious, gluten free and low sugar breakfast treat for the week! Plus, they freeze nicely too! NOMaste.

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