Thursday, December 18, 2014

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Chili

I was talking with one of my good friends about her love of sweet potatoes the other day, and when I say love, I mean love. Like, eat-a-sweet-potato-every-day kind of love. Sort of like my obsession with pancakes for dinner... I totally get it. What’s not to love? Sweet potatoes are high in fiber, filled with antioxidants, are a great source of iron and potassium, and - oh yeah - they’re absolutely delicious.


While at the grocery store following our conversation, I was inspired to buy a bag of these delicious potatoes and immediately started brainstorming what to make with them. At first I thought of simply roasting them with a little olive oil and sea salt or cutting them into wedges to make sweet potato fries (recipes to come!), but given our dreary weather as of late, I decided first to make a hearty soup.


In addition to the sweet potatoes, this chili is filled with quinoa and black beans, rendering a perfectly balanced, protein packed, vegan friendly meal. What more could you ask for?  What’s more, it is ready in 30 minutes and is one of those wonderful soups that tastes better and better as it sits. Make a big batch and enjoy it all week long.

What is your favorite way to eat sweet potatoes? Let me know below!


Sweet Potato Black Bean Chili

Serves: 4 (can easily double for 8)
Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
  • 2 tsp. olive oil
  • 1 medium sweet potato - peeled and diced (I did about a 3/4 inch dice)
  • 1 large vidalia onion - diced (may substitute other onion as well, I prefer the sweetness of the vidalia)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-2 tbls. chili powder - depending on how spicy you like your chili
  • 3/4 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. salt (or more to taste, depending on the saltiness of your broth)
  • 4 cups vegetable OR chicken broth
  • 15 oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 14 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup dried quinoa - rinsed well
  • 1 tbls. lime juice (optional)
  • Optional toppings - sour cream, cheese, avocado, green onions, cilantro

Directions:
  1. In a large pot heat oil over medium heat.
  2. Add sweet potato and onion and sauté for about 5 minutes or until onion has softened.
  3. Add in garlic cloves, chili powder, and salt, and sauté and additional minute.
  4. Add the broth, tomatoes, black beans, and quinoa. Stir to combine and bring to a boil.
  5. Cover the pot, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook for an additional 10-15 minutes until quinoa is fully cooked and sweet potatoes are soft.
  6. Add in lime juice, if using, and season with salt as needed.
  7. Garnish with desired toppings and enjoy!

Recipe slightly adapted from What's Gabby Cooking

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Avo and Bacon Sandwich

Guys, I know this isn't really much of a recipe. But... it really is delicious, so I'm going to post it.


On a side note, if you're looking for a fun Pandora station, I'm listening to the "Salt-N-Pepa & En Vogue" station right now. I am totally jamming. What are your favorite Pandora stations? I love to pick stations that go with my mood, or if I'm in a bad mood, to pull me out of it. I wish I could play the songs that have come up for you. "Kriss Kross will make ya.. JUMP - JUMP!"


I should probably switch over to the holiday tunes, but without the snow, it's so hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that Christmas is coming up so fast. I don't know if I'll ever get used to it.

Hope your holiday planning is stress free!
Meg

Avocado and Bacon Sandwich

Yield: 2
Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:
  • 2 rice cakes (or regular bread - toasted)
  • 1 avocado
  • 2 pieces turkey bacon
  • sea salt and pepper (I had Meyer Lemon Sea Salt...sooo delicious)
  • (If you don't have lemon sea salt, add a little lemon zest)

Directions:
  1. I prepare my turkey bacon in the oven. Use the package instructions.
  2. Divide avocado in half between the two rice cakes.
  3. Sprinkle salt and pepper on avocado.
  4. Top it off with bacon.
Gluten free PROTEIN BOOST to get you through your day!


Tuesday, December 9, 2014

OMG Peanut Butter Caramel Corn

Thank goodness for Sally's Baking Addiction, or I may never have come across this delicious recipe! I was feeling snack-ish and craving the lovely salty/sweet combo. Voila!!! Amazing-ness in your mouth!



Great for holiday gatherings and is ready in less than 30 minutes. More time for mingling.

Eat up!
Meg



P.S. I was trying to take pictures and kept getting picked on by this little monster who was nipping at my legs. Of course when I turn around to take pictures of him being a turkey, this is the face he gives me. "Who me?"

OMG Peanut Butter Caramel Corn


Yield: 8 - 10 cups
Time: less than 30 minutes

Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup unpopped popcorn (or one bag of microwave)
  • 2/3 cup dry-roasted peanuts
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup creamy peanut butter (I ran out of creamy and had to add in some crunchy)
Directions:
  1. Pop your popcorn and set aside in a very large bowl.
  2. Mix dry-roasted peanuts with the popcorn.
  3. Cover cookie sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
  4. In medium sauce pan mix honey and sugar. Once mixture starts bubbling, allow to cook for another 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  5. Add salt and peanut butter to mixture and stir until smooth. Remove from heat.
  6. Pour over popcorn and peanut mix, stirring it all in good.
  7. Spread completed mixture out on cookie sheets and allow at least 10 minutes to cool before devouring.
Recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction.