Advertisements

Tag Archives: easy recipe

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!
Advertisements

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 😉

Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

One of my colleagues and I were chatting about baking, and how I am not the world’s best baker, we got to talking about me developing a chocolate chip cookie recipe – because every home cook and baker deserves to have their version of a chocolate chip recipe – for her three daughters. I immediately regretted offering to do this because let’s face it, I’m way more of a cook than a baker, and even though I continue to persist and try baking regardless of my failures, I still hesitate that whatever the baked good is will be super dry, tasteless, or taste way too “healthy.” Well, today was the day, and I got rave reviews on this one. I must say, even my husband thought they were delicious too.

I’ll admit that I added a bit too much coconut oil in this recipe, and not enough flour which caused them to drastically spread on the baking tins, so to get the perfectly round shape I used a biscuit cutter (oh well, sue me). I was told by my husband, my colleague, my mother in law, and a friend who I showed the picture too that these cookies remind them of Tate’s cookies, which I happen to really enjoy. I mean, I don’t think a compliment gets better than that. These cookies are not only gluten free, but made with coconut oil, coconut sugar, grass fed butter, and Lily’s stevia sweetened chocolate chips. They’re basically breakfast cookies, you’re welcome!

Here’s what you’ll need for these bad ass cookies: (note: I adjusted the flour and coconut oil to scale back the coconut taste, and to keep the cookies a little more intact and less spread)

  • 2 and 1/4 cups gluten free 1 to 1 baking flour, I prefer Bob’s Red Mill (or you can use Cassava flour)
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup organic cane sugar
  • 1 cup coconut sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 stick grass fed butter, unsalted and softened
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 2 cups chocolate chips, I used Lily’s (this brand is a very “clean” brand which means the ingredients to make the chocolate chips is reliable and has no hidden chemicals or ingredients)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

To start, preheat your oven to 375*. You don’t necessarily have to grease the pans, but if you feel you want to, go ahead. Whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

Whisk together using a hand mixer the butter and sugars until creamy and fully blended. It is SUPER important to use softened butter in cookie recipes to maintain the structure of the cookie. It’s also important to be specific (as I am currently learning) with measurements: too much butter or oil will cause the cookies to spread too far (ehem, my mistake).

Add in the coconut oil, vanilla extract, and eggs, and blend on medium speed. Continue to blend until the mixture combines, approximately 3-4 minutes. For this specific cookie recipe, I poured the dry into the wet mixture a little at a time (basically separating my pours into thirds). I blended after each time I added in some dry ingredients. Once all the flour was combined I added in the chocolate chips and blended some more.

Using a spoon or an ice cream scoop, scoop some of the cookie batter onto your baking sheets. You should be able to comfortably fit 12 cookie dough balls on each tray. You’ll have to reuse the sheets as you bake because this recipe yields approximately 40 cookies. OHHH YEAAAA! Bake each back for 11-13 minutes or until golden brown on the sides. Transfer to a cooling rack, let the pan sit to cool down, and repeat.

I am sincerely loving experimenting in my kitchen, with a baby in tow, and a dog sitting at my feet waiting for me to drop dollops of cookie batter on the floor. These cookies will become a staple in any household, and certainly a tradition in mine! NOMaste ~

Easy Baked MAC (Mac-n-Cheese)

It’s the holiday season, and there’s nothing better than seeing family, friends, and eating a ton of different foods. It’s the third night of Hanukkah, and while I didn’t make latke’s this year (which you can find my recipe from last year here), I did toy around with something anyone celebrating any holiday would love, MAC AND CHEESE.

There are a ton of different ways to make mac and cheese (or as I simply call it MAC), and I usually start by making a roux. A roux is a base for sauces such as a cheese sauce: you take chopped onions and butter, sauté until fragrant and translucent, then add flour and it makes a paste. Then, you pour in some cream/milk/alternative to milk and stock, and bring to a boil. This will thicken; turn the heat off and layer in the shredded cheese until fully blended and combined. Yeah, this recipe is labeled EASY MAC for a reason, because we skip the roux step. We use four ingredients and it’s done in one pot. You heard me, ONE POT.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 lb or box of pasta – I used Banza’s wheel shaped pasta (this is a chickpea flour pasta and it is delicious – find it here)
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tbsp grass fed butter
  • 1 and 1/2 cups mixed shredded cheese – I used Organic valley cheddar, sharp cheddar, and mozzarella.
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Breadcrumbs – to top off prior to broil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil. Cook your preferred pasta to the desired doneness, since Banza is gluten free I cooked two minutes below the recommended time on the box as I prefer to have pasta more al dente. Strain and rinse.

Add back into the same pot and turn the heat onto medium. Pour in the milk and butter, stirring the pasta in and coating. Have patience here, the butter will take some time to melt. Sprinkle in the cheese a little at a time, stirring to combine frequently. Keep the heat between medium and low, so the cheese melts and coats all the pasta.

Set the oven to broil. Pour the MAC from the pot into an oven friendly casserole dish and sprinkle with breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese, plus a pinch more shredded cheese bc #yolo. Broil for three minutes, check after three because it can go from nicely brown to “OMG I BURNT IT” in a matter of minutes. Serve immediately and scarf down because this baby will go fast at your dinner table! NOMaste and Happy Holidays! <3

Cinnamon Apple French Toast Bake

Ever have one of those moments where something comes to you in the middle of the night and you’re almost certain it’s going to work? That’s exactly how I felt when I thought of this French toast casserole, or bake. I have always loved french toast, but had a vision for making this into a bake and caramelize some of my favorite apples to go along with it.

I have fallen in love with apples all over again after I found these SweetTango apples from Whole Foods. They are super juicy, slightly tart, and the perfect amount of sweet. They resemble Gala apples pretty closely, but are not as sweet. As I caramelized them, they held up to the butter and brown sugar, and were very tender when they baked. I was quite pleased. What I also love about this particular French toast bake is that the ingredients are super simple. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 3 large eggs
    • I use Organic Valley for all my dairy products, and you can find out why by visiting their website here. They are one of the only farms I know that really lives up to their pasture-raised and organic mission and donate regularly to charities and causes.
  • 1 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Ground nutmeg
  • Ground cloves
  • 1 brioche loaf
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp butter
  • 2 apples, diced into smaller chunks
  • Ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375* degrees. Begin with chopping and dicing the apples into smaller chunks. Take three tbsp of butter and melt into a large pan. Add the apples and toss/coat until all of the apples are coated with butter. Let sit and begin to soften on a medium heat. Add in ground cinnamon and toss. Take 1/4 cup brown sugar and add to the apples, this will help the apples brown and soften more. Lower the heat to simmer and set aside after 5 minutes. Be sure to check that the apples are not burning.

In the meantime, whisk the eggs and milk together, adding in the spices and vanilla. You can let this sit as you cut the brioche into smaller chunks. Using a baking pan or dish, assemble the diced brioche and pour the egg mixture into the brioche, letting it soak up the egg and milk; make sure you coat all of the bread! Once the apples are done, layer the apples onto the bread and fill all open spaces with apples.

Take the remaining butter and brown sugar and whisk together (or by hand) to form a crumble. Sprinkle on top of the casserole as evenly as you can. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 40 minutes or until there is no bubbling and all the egg has cooked and set. Serve with a dollop of creme fraiche or whipped cream and you’ve got a delicious brunch treat! NOMaste 🙂

Cinnamon Apple French Toast bake

A fun and simple twist to a classic savory breakfast

Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Keyword apples, baked, casserole, cinnamon, easy, fall recipes, french toast, savory, simple recipe, sweet breakfast
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Author nomastehungry

Ingredients

  • 1 loaf Brioche bread could also use a day or two stale sourdough or brioche.
  • 3 large Eggs
  • 1.5 cup Whole milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 6 tbsp Unsalted butter
  • 2 Apples diced
  • 1/2 cup Brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp Ground nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp Ground cloves

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 375*

  2. Begin with chopping and dicing the apples into smaller chunks. Take three tbsp of butter and melt into a large pan.

  3. Add the apples and toss/coat until all of the apples are coated with butter. Let sit and begin to soften on a medium heat. Add in ground cinnamon and toss. Take 1/4 cup brown sugar and add to the apples, this will help the apples brown and soften more. Lower the heat to simmer and set aside after 5 minutes.

  4. Whisk eggs and milk together, adding in the spices and vanilla. Slice the brioche and pour the egg mixture into the brioche, letting it soak up the egg and milk; make sure you coat all of the bread.

  5. Once the apples are done, layer the apples onto the bread and fill all open spaces with apples.

  6. Take the remaining butter and brown sugar and whisk together (or by hand) to form a crumble. Sprinkle on top of the casserole as evenly as you can. Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 40 minutes or until there is no bubbling and all the egg has cooked and set.

Recipe Notes

This recipe will make a softer french toast bake, whereas if you were to use a staler bread it would be a bit firmer.

You may also opt to pour the egg mixture over the bread overnight to let the egg fully soak.