Thursday, January 20, 2011

Blowing by

That seems to be the the case for this month. Already it's the 20th with Valentine's Day fast approaching. For my work, January has always been the busiest month of the year. This year is no exception. Here I am again on the couch as all the peeps are fast asleep, trying to update my poor little blog. I do enjoy the bit of quiet I get now and then when I stay up and read or write. I always regret it later when Chris is tugging at my feet to get up at quarter past five in the morning. It really doesn't matter when I go to sleep....I always hate getting up so early.
Little man always says "cheese" when I go to take a picture. He moves so fast though that I either catch him right before, or after he says it. I think for this one, I just missed the "cheese".
The kids received a kit for Christmas for making animals with balloons. I came home from work Monday (Martin Luther King day was a holiday for everyone else in the house) to find Chris in the kitchen taking requests for animal balloons. He was having more fun than the kids I think. They asked for a dog, he looked in the book and viola! A dog. He also made a hat for Bella and two octopuses. I think Chris has found a new little hobby to tinker with and the kids love their new creatures to play with.
Tonight I made an awesome yellow split pea soup for dinner. It was hard to watch my portion size with this one because I didn't want it to end. Good thing is it was easier than pie and kind to the pocket book.

I first browned a little bacon (about a half a cup, chopped) in my pan then added two diced red onions. I used the Maverick nitrate free enviro "happy" bacon which had little fat. I actually had to add some olive oil in order to cook the onions without it burning. Once the onions were translucent I added a bag of rinsed yellow split peas, 6 cups broth, couple of cups of water, some salt and black pepper. I let this simmer until the split peas were soft. About 25 to 30 minutes. I then added about a cup of chopped cilantro then used my immersion blender and pureed the soup until creamier, but still with chunks.

It had a nice rich flavor and was very satisfying. I served it with some arugula tossed with balsamic dressing.

My cooking has changed a bit. I'm getting more and more into vegetables and less into meats. I usually use meat as a flavoring accent, hardly ever the main attraction and we have reserved to only eat organic, grass fed and humane meat. This can get expensive, so we try and eat mostly vegetables. My package of happy bacon should last me a while as I have enough left to aide in a couple more dishes. Besides, when you eat beans, pasta and lentils you don't feel like you are missing anything. I also use a lot of mushrooms which give a nice flavor to a dish.

The kids don't seem to mind. Kristjan won't really eat any meat, never has. He sometimes will eat breaded chicken, but that's it. For now. I remember Bella being just as picky at first, only eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and turkey sticks. I can't get her to eat pb&j now. Now she loves many foods and is more open to taste new things.

Well, my legs are baking from my laptop and I just remembered I have carrots to prep. I don't know if I mentioned, but another new habit of mine (it's about 4 months old now) is to juice every morning for breakfast. I usually juice a few carrots and two apples, a full pint worth. Sometimes I mix in a whole beet, some kale, spinach or ginger (settles the stomach). Once I mixed a bunch of whatever I had leftover. It was carrots, blueberries, an apple and some basil. Wasn't pretty but tasted pretty good. Just that blueberries make a mess of the juicer. Won't do that again. I bought some wheat grass once. I spent 6 bucks and got a shot worth of liquid. So, it's much better economically when I spend 1.99 for double shot at the juice joint than to do it myself. Go figure.

Anyway...got rambling again. Tomorrow I plan a full veg deluxe dinner as my frig is filled with veg that needs to be cooked and I refuse to let food go to waste. I am thinking a roasted veg pasta toss. I'll post that tomorrow. Nighty night! ;o)

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