I recently found myself with left over zucchini. I considered making bread or muffins but it was lunch time and I found this recipe while I was looking for snacks I could make with zucchini. It turned out delicious, I will definitely be using this recipe again. For a little variety you can also use the black beans and zucchini mixture in a tortilla wrap or as I did on left over hamburger buns toasted with melted cheese.

Click Image for link to health.com Food and Recipes


  • 1/2 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tablespoons salsa
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped zucchini
  • 4 (6-inch) corn tortillas
  • 4 tablespoons shredded Cheddar cheese


1. Combine beans and salsa in a small bowl; mash with a fork. Stir in zucchini. 2. Layer 1 tortilla with half the bean mixture, sprinkle with 2 tablespoons cheese, and top with another tortilla. Repeat with remaining tortillas, bean mixture, and cheese. 3. In broiler or toaster oven, cook quesadillas 1 minute on each side until cheese is melted and bubbly. Or microwave for 1 minute.


I recently tried and fell in love with a new recipe from my Moosewood Restaurant Simple Suppers cookbook- Navajo Stew. I was sure it had to be a winner when I saw it contained roasted veggies and some chipotles in adobo sauce. The flavor is amazing and the stew makes for a satisfying, filling meal. I plan to make this repeatedly even though it takes a little more effort than I generally put into a meal these days… especially since the leftovers provided many easy, delicious lunches. I served this stew with pita bread and plain Greek yogurt- yum!

(This photo is from here- where you can also find the full recipe from the Moosewood website. I provided the recipe below for your and my convenience).

I must also mention that one of my carnivorous, reluctant-to-even-touch-vegetables brother tried this last night and loved it. He went for seconds! What can I say? This recipe is a winner.


Navajo Stew
from Moosewood Restaurant Simple Suppers
2 medium sweet potatoes
2 red or green bell peppers
1 large onion
4 garlic cloes, minced
2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1 Tbspn ground cumin
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 15 oz can of tomatoes (I used diced)
1 Tbsp canned chipotles in adobo sauce (no more than this amount!!!)
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 15-oz can of butter beans or black beans, drained and rinsed
flatbread (tortillas, lavash, or pita) (I used pita-yum!)
plain yogurt, sour cream
Preheat the oven to 450. Lightly oil a baking sheet.
Peel the sweet potatoes and cut into 1-inch cubes. Stem and seed the peppers and cut into 1-inch pieces. Peel the onion and cut it stem end to root end into thin wedges. In a bowl, toss the vegetables with the garlic, oil, cumin, salt, and pepper. Spread on the prepared baking sheet and roast in the oven for about ten minutes.
Stir and continue to roast for another ten to fifteen minutes, until the sweet potatoes are tender but not mushy.
While the vegetables roast, puree the tomatoes, chipotles, and cilantro in a blender until smooth. Set aside.
When the vegetables are tender, put them into a 2- or 3-quart baking dish, stir in the tomato-cilantro sauce and the beans, and return to the oven until hot, about ten minutes.
A few minutes before serving, warm the bread in the oven. Serve the stew in bowls topped with yogurt or sour cream, with warm flatbread on the side.
serving and menu idea- This is a filling stew, but corn on the cob makes a wonderful side dish and if you’ve got room for dessert, consider Warm Plums with Marscarpone.

This was my favorite recipe growing up, and it’s still one of my favorites now. They are delicious with jam. I have cut the butter to 1/2 cup when I didn’t have more without a problem.

1/2 cup honey
2/3 cup melted butter
1-1/2 cups milk
2 well-beaten eggs
2 teaspoons almond extract
5 teaspoons baking powder
3-1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1. Blend wet ingredients thoroughly.

2. Mix in dry ingredients. Fill greased
muffin pans 2/3 full.

3. Bake at 350* for 12-15 minutes.

For variety, add nuts, dried fruit, blueberries, or chopped apple. Or use
maple, orange, or vanilla extract instead of almond extract.


I recently realized that we have very few stir-fries up on the blog, which is a bit strange because stir-fries were a staple in our home growing up. Even now, a stir-fry is my default meal. They can use up a variety of vegetables left over from other dishes; the ingredients are flexible; they come together quickly; and they are healthy, economical, and delicious. The sauce was my spur-of-the-moment creation when I realized that I had a small amount of orange juice from another recipe and nothing to do with it.

1 cup orange juice

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp rice vinegar

2 tsp cornstarch

pinch red pepper flakes

2 tsp oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 cup fresh or frozen peas

2 large carrots, chopped

2 bell peppers, cut into small pieces

1 cup cooked black beans (a bit less than 1 can)

1. Mix the orange juice, soy sauce, rice vinegar, red pepper flakes, and cornstarch. Set aside.

2. Heat the oil in a wok or large skillet. Add the garlic and the peas. Stir-fry until the peas, if frozen, have thawed, or for a minute or two.

3. Add the rest of the vegetables along with the sauce. Continue stir-frying until the sauce begins to simmer.

4. Let simmer for five minutes, then serve over cooked rice.

Makes approximately four servings


Hello, family and friends! It’s so good to be back at the ol’ blog. I have so many delicious recipes I want to share with you. Today, I offer a soup recipe that has quickly become my favorite. I have been making this about once a week for the last month. I love eating it for dinner with the hubs and then enjoying the leftovers for lunch over the next couple of days. I just don’t get tired of it. Try it- I bet you’ll love it too!

Carrot Potato Soup with Ginger
from The Food Nanny Rescues Dinner
yields 7-9 cups

1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch slices
1 white onion, peeled and cut into large chunks
4-6 cups vegetable (or chicken) broth*
1 Yukon gold potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks

1/2 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp white pepper
1/4 cup heavy cream or half-and-half (I have started using milk since that’s what I tend to have on hand and the soup still turns out great)


1.  Melt the butter in a large saucepan or soup pot over medium heat. Cook and stir the carrots and onion until the onion is just starting to brown, about 8 minutes. 

Mmmm… It already smells so good at this point…

2.  Stir in the broth and potato. Increase the heat and bring to a boil. Decrease the heat to simmer and cook, covered, until the vegetables are soft and the flavors are blended, about 40 minutes. Add the ginger.

3.  Puree in batches in a blender, or use an immersion blender, until smooth. Stir in the salt, white pepper, and cream. Serve immediately.

*Note: Use just 4 cups of broth for a more distinct carrot flavor. The more broth, the milder the flavor. I prefer the taste and texture with about 6 cups of broth.



In recent months, I’ve eaten a lot of crepes. Rebecca and Sarah have independently decided to treat me to them, and I’ve also made crepes for myself a few times. I’ve filled them with peanut butter, Nutella, bananas, honey-flavored Greek yogurt, and berry syrups, and discovered that I like just about any and all combinations of the above. I’ll leave picture-posting to Rebecca and Sarah, since they can make picture-perfect crepes and I am just not that good, but I do have a few recipes to share. The terrific recipe Rebecca uses can be found here. Since I, as always, am interested in making everything whole grain, I found another recipe here (but I left out the honey, since I was planning on putting in more savory fillings, and they tasted great anyway). I don’t know if you have a different recipe, Sarah, but if you do, you should post it in the comments. For truly divine breakfasts or desserts, Rebecca’s crepes with honey Greek yogurt and simmered down berries are hard to beat, but if you’re looking for more of a sandwich substitute with fruit and nut butters, the second recipe does a great job. One other note: crepes keep for several days in the fridge and can be frozen with sheets of wax-paper between them.


I was looking for an easy cake one day and came across this one. Not only does it only take six minutes to mix together, but it also relies on non-perishable items that I always have on hand, so within forty minutes of deciding chocolate cake sounds good, I can be eating deliciously moist, fresh cake. That, for me, is the appeal of the vegan label on this cake: there’s nothing in there that can’t keep for a long time.For any family members out there, this cake tastes a lot like the traditional cake in Mom’s family (since her dad was allergic to eggs), but I think it’s a bit more fudgy and moist than that one. I can’t be completely sure on that one, as it’s been a while since I had Mom’s cake.

1 1/2 cups unbleached white flour

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp salt

1 cup sugar

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1 cup cold water

2 tsp vanilla

2 tbsp vinegar

Preheat oven to 375*. Mix the flour, cocoa, baking soda, salt, and sugar in an ungreased 8-inch square or 9-inch round pan. Mix together the oil, water, and vanilla in a 2-cup measuring cup. Pour the liquid into the pan and mix with a whisk or fork until batter is smooth. Add the vinegar and stir quickly; there will be white streaks caused by the vinegar reacting with the baking soda. Stir until the vinegar is evenly distributed. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool at least a little bit, and then enjoy.



Our Best Bites is a very popular food blog, but to be honest their recipes have been really hit or miss for me. But this one is excellent (and not as time consuming as you think. Comes together quickly). . This recipe is meatless, hearty, satisfying, and healthy. I have been really happy with the six pack of red bell peppers found at Costco – they’re huge, slightly sweet, just perfect for stuffing, and affordable considering they’re not in season right now. The spiciness is very customizable; I wanted it to be kid-friendly so we use mozzarella instead of pepper jack. I love spice though so if I weren’t cooking for kids I’d leave the jack cheese in. Here’s the recipe as we make it:


can be made 24 hours ahead.

southwest stuffed bell peppers

adapted from Our Best Bites, who adapted it from America’s Test Kitchen

serves 4.

4 large or 6 medium sweet peppers (preferably not green)
1 Tb salt
1/2 cup rice or quinoa
2 Tb olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced (I’ve totally subbed a tsp of garlic powder when I don’t feel like mincing fresh)
1/2 – 1 jalapeno, minced (or a small 3oz can of mild green chilies) (or omit if you don’t want spicy)
1 14oz can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup frozen corn kernels (OK I left this out, I like corn on the side.)
2 green onions, sliced
1/2 tsp chili powder (use chipotle or mexican chili powder if you have it)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 black pepper
1 14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes (they recommend fire-roasted, I used diced tomatoes with lime and cilantro, and highly recommend this substitution)
1 1/4 C jack or pepperjack cheese, divided (I used mozzarella).
3-4 Tbs chopped fresh cilantro
tortilla chips, just a handful and more for serving if desired. (we omitted). 

Heat oven to 350.  Start a small pot with the rice cooking if you’re doing it separately (see below).  Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil and add 1 tablespoon salt.   Prepare peppers by washing, slicing tops off, and removing insides. Boil whole peppers for about 3-4 minutes, until they begin to soften.  Remove from water with tongs and place on kitchen towel to drain.

OBB tells you here to add rice to your boiling water from the peppers and cook until tender, about 13 minutes (or longer if using brown), and then drain thoroughly. (If you have a strainer or skimmer like this one, it makes it easy to scoop the cooked rice out of the water.) Having tried it both ways, I found it easier to cook the rice by itself in a separate pot and then add it in.  

Set the rice aside and dump out the water. In your pot, heat the oil and add onions, garlic, and jalapeno (or chilies) and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Add corn, beans, green onions, chipotle chili powder, salt, and pepper. Stir until corn and beans are heated through, about 5 minutes.  Place peppers in a baking dish.  Remove pan from heat and add rice, tomatoes, 1 cup cheese, and cilantro.  Stir to combine well and evenly divide mixture between peppers.

Top peppers with remaining 1/4 cup cheese.

Bake at 350 for about 30 minutes.

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Greg and I had been dating for only one month when Valentine’s Day was upon us in 2009. Not wanting to deal with crowded, expensive restaurants, we decided to cook dinner together… for the first time. I selected this recipe from a magazine at work. I have long since forgotten which magazine it came from, but I will never forget how nervous I was to demonstrate how little I knew about cooking to Greg. Despite my clumsiness and “Oh no! I was supposed to add the (fill in the blank) 5 minutes ago!” moments, the dish turned out great, and Greg didn’t dump me. Win-win.


Since that day four years ago, we/I’ve made this recipe many times. Each time I’ve served it in the last year, Greg has asked me, “Is this on the blog yet?” Greg will be glad to know that this delicious dish is now out there for all to see and enjoy. :)

P.S. We usually add a bit more Dijon mustard than the recipe calls for, but I’ve included the full recipe in its original form.


macaroni and cheese with cauliflower    serves 6

hands-on time: 15 minutes

total time: 45 minutes


12 ounces multigrain elbow macaroni

1 head cauliflower, roughly chopped

4 slices multigrain bread, torn

½ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil

kosher salt and black pepper

1 onion, finely chopped

1 ½ cups grated extra-sharp Cheddar (6 ounces)

1 ½ cups reduced-fat sour cream

½ cup 1 percent milk

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard


Heat oven to 400 degrees F. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, adding the cauliflower during the last 3 minutes of cooking time; drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, pulse the bread in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Add the parsley, 2 tablespoons of oil, and ¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper and pulse to combine; set aside.

Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the pot and turn it to medium heat. Add the onion, ¾ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, just until soft, 5 to 7 minutes. Mix in the pasta, cauliflower, cheese, sour cream, milk, and mustard.

Transfer to a shallow, 3-quart baking dish (or if you don’t have one, a 9×13 like I always do), sprinkle with the bread crumbs, and bake until golden brown, 12 to 15 minutes.


Happy Valentine’s Day! My gift to you is to share this delicious and healthy whole wheat pancake recipe that yields light, fluffy, crispy-edged pancakes. These are excellent and escape the hockey-puck fate that too many whole grain pancakes meet. And only 2 tsp sugar for the whole recipe! They are divine. Try them, try them, you will see :)

(to get a heart shaped pancake I place a metal cookie cutter on the griddle and allow the batter to set up inside). 

These would be the perfect vehicle for a little homemade strawberry syrup, don’t you think?


healthy whole wheat pancakes

2 cups white whole wheat flour

4 1/2 tsp baking powder (not too old please)

1/2 tsp salt

2 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp sugar

2 large eggs

2 cups milk

2 tsp vanilla


mix dry ingredients. add wet ingredients. cook over medium heat on griddle or skillet in butter or non-stick spray.


recipe from skinnytaste, clink link to see nutritional profile and ww points for this recipe 

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