Quinoa Risotto

This is something I figured out after my friend Jayne explained what risotto was. It’s terrible for you, but so, so delicious.

A note: I frequently make this as part of our meatless meals, but if you’re not doing meatless, brown some italian sausage & toss it in, because it is amazingly delicious.

1 cup quinoa
2 cups broth
minced garlic (I like fresh, but do you)
1 bell pepper
1/2 onion
cream/half & half/milk
‘good’ parmesan (shredded)

Dice the onion & pepper, and add them to the garlic in a deep skillet pan. Once they smell amazing, add the quinoa and the broth. Let cook covered on low for 15-20 mins until all liquid is gone.

Add the Parmesan cheese, stir it in so it melts. Slowly stir in the cream/half & half/ milk. It’ll thicken up & make it all risotto-y. 

Serve.

Or stick it in the fridge & heat it up later in the week.

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Ranch Chicken & Broccoli

Unbelievably easy. Relatively healthy.

Chicken breasts

Frozen broccoli

Ranch seasoning 

Grease a large-ish casserole dish. Cut chicken breasts in half (either way, but I feel like they cook faster if you cut them into two thin, flat pieces through the middle) & place in the pan. Empty a bag or two of frozen broccoli into the pan. Sprinkle everything with a light dusting of ranch seasoning. Foil & fridge.

When time to cook, give it 45 mins or so (maybe more) at about 350-375, but always check with a meat thermometer.

Chicken, Cheese, & Kale enchiladas

First & foremost buy enchilada sauce. It’s time consuming & messy to make & if you’re the kind of person who makes their own enchilada sauce then seriously what are you doing reading this blog?

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So the idea to put spinach in the enchiladas came from Kendra, who is awesome.

Chicken (already cooked, preferably leftover)

Enchilada sauce

Shredded cheese

Frozen spinach/kale

An onion

Tortillas

First chop or dice or shred the chicken & dice the onion. Then put that, about half a bag of frozen spinach (or kale), two or three handfuls of shredded cheese & 1/2-2/3 of the enchilada sauce in a bowl & fold it all together.

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Grease a small casserole dish/oven safe pan.

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Spoon the filling into the tortillas, roll them up, & line them up in the pan. Pour the remainder of the enchilada sauce over it & sprinkle with another handful of shredded cheese. Foil & fridge, until it’s time to cook that at like 350 for 30-40 mins (until the cheese is all melted & the onions are cooked).

Greens

ETA: I edited this post after making kale using this recipe. I edited it to add a picture. This is a picture of my 2.5yo son’s plate. He ate ALL the kale I put on his plate when I made it this way.
KALE you guys, he ate KALE. And I put easily 3-4 tablespoons on there.

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See? There’s still sweet potato and meatloaf on that plate, but the kale is basically gone.

This is a recipe I got from my friend Karianna, who is awesome & her blog is great.

Leafy green plant (fresh or frozen, spinach, kale, collard, mustard, whatever)

Bacon

Frank’s red hot sauce

Buck’s seasoning

Stove top:

Start by frying the bacon in a deep skillet. When it’s getting that delicious smell, put the greens on top & sprinkle with Buck’s but be careful bc it’s salty. If you can’t get Bucks’s first I’m sorry because it’s delicious, but second seasoned salt works ok. When it’s getting to look pretty well cooked shake on a good amount of Frank’s red hot. Then taste it & adjust the Buck’s/Frank’s balance.

Crock pot:

First (always) put a crock pot liner in a small ish crock pot. I have used a small oven bag with success in my itsy bitsy crock pot. They say not to, but I’m a rebel.

Layer bacon, greens, Buck’s, & Frank’s but go really easy on the Buck’s & Frank’s because you can always add more but too much & now you’ve wasted time AND food.

Cook on low until it’s done.

Kidding (kinda). Cook for like 2-3 hours? Maybe just use the stove to be safe.

Meatloaf

As I mention in my about page I’m not really a recipe person. However, I can make a concerted effort to put together instructions which are like a recipe. Here is that attempt for meatloaf:

2lbs ground beef (or turkey)

bread crumbs

Shredded cheese

2 eggs

1 onion

Garlic powder

Italian seasoning

Barbecue sauce

First, grab two gallon size ziplock bags. Pour a good amount of bread crumbs into each bag (enough to make meatloaf with one pound of meat). You can always add more if the consistency is wrong, so err on the side of less. Next, add a handful or so of shredded cheese to each bag. Dice the onion & split it between the bags.

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Divide the 2lbs of meat in half & put one half in each bag. Crack an egg I to each bag, and add the garlic powder, seasonings, maybe some salt.

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Now press as much air out of each bag as you can & deal it shut.

Mix the meatloaf together by kneading it while it’s in the bag. This is a trick I figured out after too many child-related disasters while elbow deep in raw meat. Mix it together as much & as well as you can.

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Now, write the date & “meatloaf” on one bag & put it in the freezer.

You’re welcome.

Put the second meatloaf mix in a greased pan, cover with a little barbecue sauce, & throw foil over it before sticking it in the fridge for later.

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When it’s time to cook it, bake at 375 (ish) for 45mins to an hour. Poke it with a meat thermometer to be sure it’s safe. The internet says the safe internal temp for ground beef is 160, while turkey is 165. That seems arbitrary to me, but I don’t science.

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Alternatively, you could use a crock pot liner instead of a ziplock bag, then when it’s time to cook, put it in the crock pot on low for, idk, let’s say 5-6 hours. High for 4. Use a meat thermometer to be sure.

Always.