Eat Your Veggies with Breakfast

We all know veggies are good for us to eat, but sometimes it’s hard to get all of our servings in at lunch and dinner.

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You can make all kinds of veggies for breakfast: spinach, kale, garlic, mushrooms, tomatoes, zucchini and more. Two of the easiest ones I find to chop cook and mix in with eggs are peppers and onions.

For breakfast today I chopped a 1/4 cup of Yukon Gold potatoes, a few slices each of red and green p stop peppers and sweet onions. Sauté veggies in a little butter or olive oil until slightly browned. Then either fry or scramble some eggs with them and serve.

Congratulations you just  got more veggies in your day!

Cooler Weather Means It’s Chicken Pot Pie Time

Finished Pie!I’ve made some good chicken pot pies through the years, but the one I made yesterday was so tasty! I will be keeping this recipe to use again. Like other dishes, better quality ingredients mean a better finished product.

My recipe below is one I tweaked from Simply Scratch and it makes enough for two single-crust chicken pot pies. Don’t be afraid of the butter and milk in the recipe. Use low fat milk if you must but please use real butter.

INGREDIENTS:
1 whole chicken (organic preferred) – quick method is to buy a ready made rotisserie chicken.
1 stick of Butter, divided
2 whole Carrots, peeled and diced small
2 Celery Stalks, diced small
4 Cloves of Garlic
1 small Diced Yukon Potato
1 medium Sweet Onion, peeled and diced small
16 oz. bag of Frozen Peas
1/2 cup Frozen Corn
3 cups Chicken Broth, warmed – Use homemade from the Whole Chicken you just made if you can.
1-1/2 cups Whole Milk
1/2 cup Whole Wheat Pastry Flour (use regular Whole Wheat or White if that’s what you’ve got on hand)
2 teaspoons Kosher Salt, more or less to taste
1/2 teaspoons Black Pepper, more or less to taste
1 tablespoon Dried Parsley
1 teaspoon Dried Thyme
1 teaspoon Dried Sage
1 Package store-bought Crust. I used a box from the Immaculate Baking Company or a Homemade Pie Crust recipe.
2 9-inch pie pans or 6 (10-ounce) Ramekins

TO COOK THE CHICKEN: Place the chicken in a large pot and fill with water up high on the chicken. Throw in some salt, pepper and a bay leaf. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to medium. Let cook for about 30 minutes until cooked through. Remove chicken to a cutting board and let cool for a few minutes, then remove all meat and put into a bowl. You may have some extra meat to use for another recipe also.

TO MAKE THE POT PIES: Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and grease pie pans with a little butter or olive oil.

Melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a large Dutch oven.

Add in the diced carrots, onion and celery and cook for 5 minutes. Add in the diced potato and season with a teaspoon of kosher salt and 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper. Cook until the onions are soft and translucent and the carrots are soft {but not too soft}.

Now add in the remaining 5 tablespoons of butter and let that melt. Once melted add in the half cup of flour and stir often while it cooks for 2 minutes.

Pour in the 3 cups of hot chicken broth and the 1-1/2 cups of whole milk. Let that simmer, stirring occasionally until thickened 5-8 minutes.

Next add in the frozen peas, corn, cooked chicken, dried parsley,thyme and sage. Stir. Taste add season further with up to a teaspoon more of salt and a little more black pepper if desired.

Set your two pie plates next to each other and scoop the goo evenly into each pie plate.

Pies - ready for crust

Let them cool down a bit before placing the pie dough over top and crimping the edges. With a sharp knife make slits for ventilation.

Slide the pot pies into a preheated 375 degree oven and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the crust is golden. I like to put foil or a crust guard over my crust so it doesn’t get too dark. That’s personal preference.

Remove and let them cool for 10 minutes before serving. Enjoy!

NOTES: *For a glossy top crust, try beating an egg with a tablespoon of water and brush over top before baking.

Breakfast Cookies and Muffins!

Here are two recipes that you can make, eat and save some of for later! One is sweet and one savory.

“Oatmeal & Cherry Breakfast Cookies”
Made these today and they were so good! All four of us enjoyed them. The boys kept smiling saying “cookies for breakfast!”
Great served with coffee or milk.
I found the recipe in a book called “Clean Eating for Busy Families” and you can find it here at Edible Phoenix.
With oats, whole wheat flour, fruit, nuts, milk and a little oil, it provides a filling and lasting breakfast at home or on the go. I used raisins instead of cherries, because that’s what I had on hand. The only substitution I may do next time would be to cut the sugar down. It calls for 1 cup of brown sugar. I think you’d be fine with 1/2 or 3/4 cup.

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“Ham & Cheese Muffins”
These are great for breakfast with or without an egg on the side. I’ve got some in the freezer right now and they heat up real quick.
I found this recipe at Weelicious. It’s a great recipe site for families.

Who Doesn’t Like Kale (Chips)?

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You’ve probably heard by now that kale isn’t just good for you, but it’s a “super food.” I like it in smoothies, sautéed, in soups, but one of the easiest and tastiest ways to make it is into kale chips. My two and four year old enjoy them just like they were potato chips, so I bet you will too!

Buy a bunch of kale, rinse, dry off. Tear of the leaves from the stems (discard the stems). Then you want to rip them into potato chip size pieces… not too big, not too small. If they’re too big they will get soggy while baking instead of crisp.

Preheat your oven to 325.

Put them in a pile on a cookie sheet and drizzle or spritz a little olive oil on them (no more than a teaspoon). Sprinkle some salt and just a bit of garlic powder (if you like garlic). Spread them around on the cookie sheet so that they are not overlapping much. Put into oven for 12-15 minutes.

You want to watch them at about 12 minutes. The trick is to get them just until they’re crisp, but before the ends starting getting yellowish / brown. Pull them out, put in a bowl and enjoy!

 

Chicken with Chimichurri

ImageI discovered chimichurri sauce not too long when trying to figure out what to do with a lot of extra parsley in my fridge. Then I found out you could make it with carrot tops too. It’s super fresh tasting and makes grilled meats taste amazing. Definitely roast some potatoes and dip them in it too. You’ll be glad you did!

Carrot top chimichurri – 1 bunch of carrot greens, juice of 1 lemon, 1/4 tsp. salt, dash of pepper, 4 cloves garlic, 1 tsp. dried oregano. Dump all in food proccessor and puree. (You could use cilantro or parsley in addition to the carrot greens depending on the flavor you’re going for. If you go for cilantro, omit the oregano.)

Grilled chicken – boneless skinless breasts (Publix Greenwise or other meat that has not been fed junk food). Filet the chicken pieces and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill on each side for a few minutes until just barley done. Remove from grill and cover with foil to lock in juices. 

Roasted potatoes – These garlic roasted potatoes by Ina Garten are easy and awesome!

Grilled asparagus – drizzle some olive oil over about a pound of asparagus (washed and ends snapped). Then sprinkle some salt, pepper and garlic powder. Now use your hands and rub all to coat. Grill a few minutes per side until slightly browned all around.

Plate and enjoy!

For the kids, I used a sectioned plate with the potatoes and asparagus in their own small piles for eyes, chicken in the shape of a mouth and cut small red pepper rings for the nose. It was a hit! (can’t promise that every time)