Our Growing Edge- May Roundup

I have something a little different in store for you today! Genie, the awesome blogger who runs Bunny Eats Design, contacted us a few months ago to see if we’d be interested in hosting May’s edition of Our Growing Edge! I was so honored to be asked- Genie has done a wonderful job of gathering food bloggers from all over the world into an inspiring, encouraging community.

Every month, food bloggers submit a link of one of their recent blog posts- you can make anything you’d like, the only requirement is that the recipe needs to be something new to you- a new ingredient or preparation or experience. It’s awesome to see bloggers getting out of their comfort zones- the results are spectacular!

Interested in joining in on next month’s roundup? It’s a great experience! For more information, visit Our Growing Edge.

Now that you know a little bit about what a roundup is, let’s jump right into this month’s edition!

watermelon-for-pinterestFirst up! Fa’s Kitchen tackled making watermelon juice– something I’ve never heard of, but it sounds delicious!

Grain-Free-Eggplant-Lasagna

 This recipe made my mouth water! What a creative and delicious way to substitute eggplant for pasta.

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This blog post and recipe blew my mind! Not only does Simona write in both English and Italian, she made homemade matcha noodles. So impressive!

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This looks amazing! Spinach Stuffed Flank Steak– yum!

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My favorite again- pasta! Julie made a delicious looking Carbonara dish, that we’ll have to try.

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Everyday Life Mom made some delicious Almond Butter Bars that look like the perfect post-workout snack!

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Our host, Genie, ended up with 42 figs in her fridge, and shared some beautiful photos of how she creatively used them up.

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Yum!! The Dream Baker whipped up the most delicious looking Chocolate Banana Cake that I’m dying to try.

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Kerene from The Dream Baker also submitted her recipe for Oven-roasted Char Siu (BBQ Pork)– another delicious, mouth-watering recipe.

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Saffron & Honey submitted these gorgeous photos of her recipe for Ramps Raclette. This wasn’t something I was familiar with, but her post made me want to try it out!

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Feijoa- a completely foreign type of fruit. Nom Nom Panda creatively used up her bountiful harvest in feijoa paste.

img_1918-1024x683Becky made the yummiest looking Beet Salad– looks like a perfect summer recipe!

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Chelsea recently highlighted Smorgasburg, in New York City. They stopped by and got donuts from Dough, and oh my goodness- they look amazing.

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Another alternative to pasta in lasagna! Definitely worth trying!

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Last but not least, these absolutely adorable Banana Banana Banana Cake‘s might be one of my favorite links for this month! Isabel from Sweet Loves killed it!

So that’s it! May’s round-up is complete!

our growing edge

 

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Sweet Potato Hash

My Daughter and I- Sweet Potato Hash

Jordan found this recipe on one of her favorite blogs, A Beautiful Mess and we decided to try it. We made it for dinner, because we love breakfast for dinner and it was quick and easy and very delicious!

I adjusted the recipe a bit, mostly for quantity, and we all loved it- I’ve made it several times already. The recipe says you don’t need to peel the sweet potatoes and I agree. I’ve tried it both ways and it’s just not worth the time to peel them, they soften up enough while cooking.

My Daughter and I- Sweet Potato Hash 1

Sweet Potato Hash

3-4 sweet potatoes, cut into cubes

1-2 tablespoons minced garlic

6-8 pieces of bacon, cut into pieces

1 onion, chopped

Salt and pepper

Italian seasoning

 

The first thing you’re going to do is quarter up the bacon slices and throw them into the heated pan. Let them sizzle and cook and smell up your place real good. While the bacon is doing its thing, you can chop the sweet potato down to bite size pieces. When the bacon is cooked through (not all the way crispy yet) drain the grease if there is too much. You want to have a few tablespoons left in the pan. If you’d prefer, you can drain the bacon grease and add some other oil. Toss in the sweet potatoes and cover.

At this point, cut up the onion and garlic and add to the pan.I like the potatoes to cook till they brown, which can take about 15-20 minutes. It depends on how many potatoes you used/heat/pan. Add in the seasonings and stir. The recipe calls for fresh rosemary, which would be good too. Let this cook for a couple minutes. While you’re finishing the rest of the meal.

In a separate pan, you can get your eggs going, so everything is ready at once.

 

Recipe modified from A Beautiful Mess

 

Cindy & Jordan

Chicken Sausage Kebabs + Roasted Cauliflower

My Daughter and I- Chicken Sausage Kebabs + Roasted Cauliflower

So I mentioned awhile back that we were eating a bit differently lately. While I feel like I’m mostly healthy eater, I enjoy pizza, pasta and bread often! And don’t even get me started on beer!

The gym where Jordan and I work out offers these weight loss challenges on a regular basis and even though I’ve worked out there for almost three years, I’ve never taken part in one – until now. However, I didn’t do it to lose a bunch of weight. I did it to see if I could actually do it, and also to try something new with my eating. I went through a difficult period of time where I was bedridden due to chronic pain issues. After months on pain meds and more tests and doctor appointments then I care to recall, I was still in pain and my liver was damaged due to the meds. After months of pain, tests and meds; one doctor suggested that I might have an autoimmune disease. By then I was so over doctors and I decided to do something different. I started moving more – moving even though I was in agony, and you know what? It worked! I’m off all meds and feeling really well. I remember about four years ago going to my first stand up paddle board class and crying because I was able to do it. It was such a turning point for me. I started walking slowly around our house, and then eventually adding more distance and speed and after almost a year of that I got up the nerve to join a boot camp for one month on a Groupon. I was weak and so afraid to get hurt, but I kept going. It’s been the best thing for me. I love it and I feel like it has made such a huge difference in my overall health.

Over the past several months I have really increased my training. I still go to boot camp four mornings a week but I started incorporating yoga once or twice a week along with some serious hikes. Jordan and I are heading out on the JMT in July and I needed to get trail ready. We did a portion of the JMT last summer, but our goal this year is to do the whole thing. So I needed to get myself ready. One of the ways I am doing it it is by eating as healthy as I possibly can – fueling my body well for all the hard workouts. We cut all processed sugar, flour, grains, pasta, beans etc. I was a little worried if I’d be able to do it, but it was easier than I thought and the results have been amazing. I feel so much better. I don’t have the stomach aches that I had before, my energy level is higher and I’m drinking less coffee. My pain levels are much lower too. The six week challenge ends this week, but I plan to keep up a lot of the dietary changes. I will still eat pasta, bread and pizza – but just not as often as I did before the challenge.

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So with all of that said – here is a recipe I made the other day to go along with our new way of eating. We roast a lot of veggies, eat a lot of salads and grill fish and chicken. But I got it in my brain that I wanted to make kebabs but with sausage pieces. I found some amazing and delicious chicken sausages at Costco that were organic, gluten free and nitrite free. They were flavored with spinach and red peppers and were delicious.

Chicken Sausage Kebabs
1 bell pepper (any color), cut into 1″ pieces
1 red onion, cut into large pieces
1 package sausage of your choice

Thread the chicken, peppers, and onions onto water soaked wooden skewers. Spray lightly with olive oil or coconut oil spray and grill until everything is heated and has a bit of grill marks on it.

You can add any veggies you like such as squash, mushrooms etc. Because the sausage is precooked, this meal just takes minutes to heat on the grill.

Roasted Cauliflower

You can make this recipe with almost any veggie – it is definitely a favorite around here. I have made a yummy combination of cauliflower and broccoli before and we also follow this basic recipe when roasting asparagus, Brussels sprouts and even butternut squash.

I started the cauliflower first and got it roasting so everything would be ready at the same time.

1 head cauliflower, cut into chunks.
Minced garlic
Olive oil
Salt and pepper
Creole seasoning
Parmesan cheese

Preheat over to 425* and put the oven rack on the upper third of the oven. Line a baking sheet with foil. Put washed, cut veggies on tray. Drizzle with olive oil and then sprinkle on the garlic, seasonings of your choice, grated Parmesan cheese. Toss to cover and stick into a preheated oven. Stir veggies after about 10 minutes and keep checking on them. You want them to brown up a bit – but don’t over cook them. I usually cook mine for about 20 minutes.

 

Cindy

{Ridiculously Easy} Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins

My Daughter and I- {Ridiculously Easy} Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins

Most of the time, when a recipe says that the prep time is 5 minutes, I don’t really believe it. Between measuring and mixing, baking almost always takes longer than I expect.

These muffins really do have a 5 minute prep time though- they are incredibly simple and fast, and they turned out super delicious! An extra bonus is how healthy they are- totally breakfast material 😉

My Daughter and I- {Ridiculously Easy} Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins 1

{Ridiculously Easy} Banana Oat Greek Yogurt Muffins 

1 cup plain Greek yogurt

2 ripe bananas

2 eggs

2 cups rolled oats (old fashioned or quick)

¼ cup brown sugar

1½ tsp. baking powder

½ tsp. baking soda

½ cup chocolate chips, mini or regular

Preheat oven to 400* and prepare a muffin pan with paper liners. Spray inside of liners thoroughly.
Beat all ingredients together except for chocolate chips until oats are broken down and batter is smooth and creamy. Stir in chocolate chips.
Pour batter into prepared muffin pan, filling each cavity until it is about ¾ full.  Sprinkle a few chocolate chips over the top of each muffin if you’d like.
Bake for 15-18 minutes, until the tops of your muffins are golden brown and set and a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Recipe from Running with Spoons (who has a ton of other healthy baked recipes on her blog!)
Jordan

Easter Breakfast Casserole

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Easter is such a great holiday and such a wonderful time of year! We often go to a sunrise church service and by the time we get home, we are all ready for a delicious breakfast. This breakfast casserole is so simple and delicious and we all love it! At Christmas time, this recipe was our most popular post ever and I can understand why.

You mix the casserole up and leave it in the refrigerator overnight and then pop it in the oven the next morning. We serve ours with fruit and either muffins or cinnamon rolls. Listed below are a few of our favorite breakfast sweets. Enjoy your Easter!

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1./ Blueberry Muffins 2./ Fresh Blackberry & Lemon Cake  3./ Apple Crisp Muffins

easter breakfast line-up

 

Easter Breakfast Casserole

4 cups of shredded hash brown potatoes, thawed
10 eggs
8 pieces of cooked bacon,chopped
1 1/2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup cottage cheese
1/3 milk
4or 5 green onions, chopped
Hot sauce to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup of additional shredded cheese for top of casserole

Mix all the ingredients together except the 1/2 cup of cheese. Pour into a greased 9×13″ pan. Top with the shredded cheese. Cover and put into refrigerator overnight. Let sit on counter for 5 to 10 minutes and then bake uncovered at 325* for about 45 minutes or until the eggs are cooked.

Cindy