Wednesday, January 27, 2016
Lasagna with creamy béchamel sauce is a great alternative to ricotta! It will quickly replace your traditional lasagna recipe.
I think everyone has their favorite go to Lasagna recipe, but L.J. would turn his nose up when I would make my original recipe, since it contained ricotta cheese.
Lasagna is one of those recipes with so much meaning and memories for us, since it was one of the first dinners I prepared for Colt way back when, in the apartment he was staying at with his buddy.
With L.J.'s aversion to ricotta or cottage cheese Lasagna had become a rare item on the dinner rotation.
Until I decided to try a béchamel sauce like I use for Creamy Macaroni and Cheese
The first time we enjoyed a ricotta free Lasagna was when Colt and I escaped for a weekend getaway in Victoria, BC years ago.
I ordered Lasagna with a Besciamella (the Italian equivalent of béchamel sauce) leaving the memory forever engraved on my palate.
The Lasagna was constructed of layers of bolognese sauce, béchamel, plenty of cheese and sheets of fresh pasta.
I wasn't sure the Lasagna would pass L.J.'s palate but I found him enjoy a piece as large as his Dad's the last few times I've made this.
Lasagna with Béchamel Sauce is worth the effort and the taste is a whole new level of deliciousness if you've never tried it.
Honestly I doubt I will ever add ricotta to Lasagna again, the creaminess of the béchamel can't be beat! 

Spaghetti Sauce

Thursday, January 21, 2016
Homemade Spaghetti Sauce is easy to make and a great way to stock the freezer! Full of lots of meat and veggies.

I don't think it's possible to make Spaghetti Sauce without making enough to feed an army. 

When I was growing up Granny would always make a large batch of Spaghetti Sauce and stock the freezer with the leftovers. She made the best homemade Spaghetti Sauce I ever had, aside from when I was in about 2nd or 3rd grade, and wanted the plain sauce without all the stuff, like my friends ate. That phase of life didn't last long and I quickly realized plain tomato sauce wasn't all it was cracked up to be.

This one time in 6th Grade I spent the night at my friends house, the next day while their parents were gone we became hungry so we made Spaghetti Sauce, and not like you open a can of Ragu Spaghetti Sauce, we made a giant stock pot full of Spaghetti Sauce! I can't remember the outcome of making a giant pot of Spaghetti Sauce but hopefully their family enjoyed it as much as we did! I also can't remember if we cleaned the kitchen, but I sure hope we did.

I can only imagine the look on their Mom's face when there was enough Spaghetti Sauce to feed an army, and the kitchen looked like a bomb went off.. It's moments like those I look back on, laugh, and pray their Mom wasn't frazzled.

My Spaghetti Sauce making ways haven't changed after all these years, I still make a ton, and try to keep a few jars in the freezer for an easy dinner.

Asian Shrimp and Black Rice Salad

Tuesday, January 19, 2016
Asian Shrimp and Black Rice Salad is an easy to make healthy salad perfect as a main dish, side, or to bring to your next potluck!
Writing this post today is incredible difficult for one reason..
I am out of ingredients to make more of this Asian Shrimp and Black Rice Salad, and can't wait to enjoy another mouthful of this deliciousness! 
Asian Shrimp and Black Rice Salad is so hearty it doesn't feel like eating a typical salad, and a great healthy dinner option with only 446 calories per serving..
I used Village Harvest Black Rice as the base for the salad with it's delicious, earthy flavor.
It contains plenty of iron, vitamins, minerals, and fiber making it the perfect start to a healthy, hearty salad, alongside shrimp, pineapple, mango, kale sprouts or baby kale, and cilantro.
The mango and pineapple help keep the salad light yet filling, providing that wonderful balance of sweet and sour flavors so common in Asian cuisine.
A simple Asian Vinaigrette is then drizzled over the top made with rice wine vinegar, sesame seed oil, soy sauce, fresh ginger, and seasonings, to deliciously compliment, and infuse the flavors.
Asian Shrimp and Black Rice Salad is equally delicious served warm on a chilly winter day, or chilled for an easy, healthy lunch or dinner.

17 Healthy Salads That Don't Taste Like Rabbit Food

Thursday, January 14, 2016
17 Healthy Salads That Don't Taste Like Rabbit Food!
It's the time of year where everyone starts trying to shed the holiday pounds, and get ready for the summer, or maybe that's just me.

So I found 17 Healthy Salads That Don't Taste Like Rabbit Food, because no one wants to eat a boring salad everyday!  I like having a quick list of salads to add to the dinner rotation a few nights a week to keep us on the right track.

 Whether it's for a bbq, potluck, picnic, or easy meal these salads are sure to get your taste buds salivating.

Enchilada Taco Cups

Saturday, January 9, 2016
Enchilada Taco Cups are easy to make! Perfect party food for Cinco De Mayo, Super Bowl, or Taco Tuesday!

Enchilada Taco Cups are the hot thing in our house at the moment. I almost couldn't share these little bites of deliciousness with you, because I couldn't find the notebook I wrote the recipe on, before placing it into a safe place. It's probably a sign I need to condense down to one notebook to work on recipes, instead of 3. It would be embarrassing if I told you how often this occurrence goes on. 

Enchilada Taco Cups are super easy to make, and who doesn't love Mexican food? Colt and the kids can't get enough of these Enchilada Taco Cups, and seems to be the weekend favorite right now.

I used wonton wrappers for the shell since they come pre-cut in perfect bite size pieces. Then I made an easy saucy enchilada base with ground beef, and topped them with cheese, before popping them in the oven to get extra toasty. We then garnished the cups with tomato, avocado, sour cream, and salsa, or hot sauce.

For Cinco De Mayo or a Super Bowl party these would be fun with a condiment bar, so everyone can chose their own topping.

Not only are they tasty, but super easy to make which equates to a win in my book! 

Beef Borscht

Sunday, January 3, 2016
Healthy easy to make Beef Borscht.
Hot Borscht soup has been a long time winter favorite of mine for as long as I can remember, even as a kid I loved a huge healthy bowl of the hearty goodness. I'm not sure if it's just a deep part of my bohemian genes or the gorgeous inviting colors, but it's definitely a soup that warms my soul.

Borscht is a great recipe if your looking to reduce your grocery budget in the new year with only 10 ingredients that are mainly kitchen staples, and really easy to make. It's also around 400 calories a serving, under 500 if you add a dollop of sour cream or greek yogurt so it's perfect if one of your New Years resolutions is healthier eating.

I adapted this recipe from my Dad's wife Anna, she's from Uzbekistan, so when I was looking for a  Borscht recipe she gave me a few authentic tips. She told me you can use beef or pork in the Borscht, and either is really tasty. I've tried it both ways, and they are equally delicious, but I think beef is my favorite. She adds less beets then I do, but I find the kids devour the soup even with more beets, so it's a great way to sneak in a few extra veggies in. I believe she uses fresh tomatoes, but I prefer canned tomatoes in the winter, since tomatoes this time of year aren't as ripe. I could have that mixed up, because I couldn't find my notes on Borscht, and made it strictly from memory this time.

I couldn't think of a better dish to kick off the first of the year, and also celebrate national Sunday Supper month, but something hearty, healthy, and delicious! 
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