Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Making Soup

It may be 90 degrees, but my calendar says October and after smelling my "Leaves" oil from Bath and Body Works all day and seeing a million fall leaves photos on the Instagram, I'm in the autumn mood. So I'm going to make some soup, dammit.

This is one of our very favorite soups, so I wouldn't be surprised if I've already posted the recipe before (and I'm just lazy enough to not want to look). But believe me, this soup is worth multiple posts.

Bean and Bacon Soup

3-4 slices of bacon (or more, if you're so inclined. I'm inclined to use 9. So I do.)
1 onion, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, sliced.
a few carrots, sliced
a couple stalks of celery, sliced
16 oz vegetable broth (water works, too, if that's all you've got)
2 cans cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
salt and pepper
some chopped fresh parsley

Cook the bacon until crispy in a large pot, then remove. Using the bacon grease (unless that weirds you out -- you can drain the pot and use olive oil), saute the onion, garlic, carrot and celery until they begin to soften. Add broth and beans and simmer until the veg please you with their tenderness. While waiting for this to happen, eat a piece of bacon if you made a lot. Then, use a potato masher (or the back of a wooden spoon) to smash about half of the beans. Chop up the bacon and then toss in. Add salt and pepper to taste. Throw in some parsley for color and tastiness (yes, that's basil in my photo cause I had no parsley. Use your imagination).

I like to serve this with a chunk of sourdough bread, because that is a delicious combo. And, like most soups, this is even better the next day. I encourage you to make this sooner than later.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Iceland Again

We're in Iceland again! Blogging over HERE

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Jonathan Safran Foer Interview

I love this interview with Jonathan Safran Foer about his book Eating Animals.

I especially like his point at the end that not everyone in the world needs to become a vegetarian. But the impact of eating less meat that we currently are -- even one more vegetarian meal per week -- would make a huge impact on the environment. That is definitely something everyone can do.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Fried "Rice"

I'm all about the easiest food possible right now. Because I'm lazy.

olive oil
1 small onion, diced
some carrots, diced
6 stalks thin asparagus, cut into 1.5" pieces
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 eggs
2 cups cooked quinoa
soy sauce
lemon juice

Heat olive oil over medium-heat in a large saute pan. Add onion and carrot and cook until softened. Add peas and asparagus. Stir around for a few minutes. Push everything to the side and crack two eggs into the clear space you just created. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper and then scramble. When the egg is cooked, combine with the veggies and add the cooked quinoa.

Sprinkle a tablespoon or so of soy sauce and a little squeeze of lemon over the whole mess and mix together. And more pepper. Cause I love pepper. So tasty.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Cheese Ravioli with Browned Butter and Sage Sauce

Hello, easiest dinner ever.

1 package of Trader Joe's cheese ravioli
3 Tablespoons butter
3 sage leaves
1/4 cup good Parmesan, grated

Cook ravioli according to package directions. While that's cooking, brown butter over medium-high heat. Add sage leaves. Reduce heat to low and stir around until ravioli is done cooking. Drain pasta (don't shake off all the water) and add to browned butter. Toss to coat. Add Parmesan and freshly ground black pepper.

I served along with a giant salad of romaine, oranges, shallots and parsley dressed with olive oil, white wine vinegar and white balsamic and a pinch of sea salt. Also, roasted broccoli with a squeeze of lemon and salt and pepper.

I wish I could just keep eating and eating.

Side note: I absolutely love finding little live critters in my produce. It's so exciting to me to see evidence that I'm eating REAL LIVING food instead of food that has not only grown in sterile soil, but been sprayed while it's growing and also irradiated when it's packaged. I'll raise the roof to that!

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Remember how I said I love making things myself instead of buying them? Well, I really mean it. I love being all "Damn the Man!" in absolutely as many things as possible.

I've been making my own deodorant for about 9 months now. I love knowing exactly what is in it, it's super cheap, and there's no wasteful packaging. Plus it works better than anything else I've ever used.

Just mix together:

1/4 cup baking soda
1/4 cup corn starch
4 Tablespoons coconut oil
a few drops of essential oil of your choice (optional)

You may need to soften the coconut oil a bit to be able to stir it up, but the melting point is only 76 degrees so it doesn't take much.

I store mine in a wee little 1/2 pint (I think that's the size?) canning jar and it works great. I've heard of people just reusing an old roll-up deodorant container, but my house is often too hot (over that 76 degree melting point) and it turns to liquid. So this screw cap jar works just perfectly no matter what the temperature. To apply, just rub your fingers in it a little and massage in.

The coconut oil smells deliciously coconut-y so no other scent is really needed but I've added orange and tea tree oil in separate batches just for fun. This is my third batch in 9 months, so it definitely lasts awhile. I should do the math and figure out how much a batch costs to compare to store-bought deodorant. But that would involve actually doing math. All I know is that it's CHEAP and you're using stuff you already have. Which is just awesome to me.

There are a lot of other recipes out there that include shea butter and other cool ingredients, but this is the one I tried since I didn't have to buy anything. And it worked, so I'm sticking with it.

Coming soon, some more cheap and natural hygiene products!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Tortilla Soup

This is one of our new favorites. I just made it up one night and it never ends up the same way since I've never even written it down until right now. But it's always good.

olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 carrots, sliced
1 cup frozen corn
1 leek or some cabbage, chopped (optional, but I love cabbage in soup so I put it in whenever I can)
2 cans (or 3-4 cups) pinto beans
1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped
some cumin
some paprika
some garlic powder
some chili powder
1 quart vegetable stock

Saute the onion and carrot in a tablespoon or so of olive oil until they begin to soften. Then add the rest of the above ingredients. Let simmer for an 30-60 minutes until all vegetables are tender. Adjust seasonings as needed.

Serve with:
sour cream
crushed tortilla chips
more cilantro

Now, unfortunately, my photo up there is sadly lacking in a couple ingredients that make it most delicious: sour cream (I'm working on making my own. Yep, you heard me), avocado (Mine aren't ripe. Sad face) and I just forgot to add the chips before I took the photo and I'm too lazy to take another. But, it's still good.

If you wanted to add chicken you easily could. Maybe slow cook in a crock pot for a couple hours with the stock and then shred it up? I've never done it but it sounds viable and I'm sure you'll figure something out. :)