Happy Thursday!!! I took it to the kitchen after work today. I’ve discovered the joy of making my own red sauce and will never buy jarred again. I don’t have an exact recipe, but I can tell you I roasted a bunch of Roma tomatoes with garlic and onions/drizzled with avocado oil and seasoned with salt and pepper, oregano and basil-roasted about 25 minutes at 350, then cooled and removed the skins. In a large sauce pan, sauté half of a diced white onion, one diced carrot (breaks up the acidity of the tomatoes with natural sweetness), and a ton of minced garlic🤣. Add one large can of peeled whole Roma tomatoes that’s been drained. Squish the tomatoes with your hands (or a spoon lol), add a few chunks of Parmesan cheese Season with salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, oregano and basil. Cook down for about 25 minutes. Add in the tomatoes you roasted and removed the skin, and purée with an immersion blender or whatever you use to blend things. Add back to the sauce pan, and let warm through. Add a pat or two of butter to finish it off. This time I added sautéed Italian Turkey sausage and served over brown rice noodles. Yum!!
Do you enjoy making homemade sauces? What’s your favorite?
Happy Sunday! I spent the last couple of hours cooking and meal prepping for the week. Baked chicken, steamed veggies and brown rice will be our main menus. I did make some yummy chicken soup for dinner with diced carrots, sweet potatoes, poblano peppers, onions, garlic and chicken. I seasoned with all kinds of spices, going towards lots of warm spices like cumin, turmeric, paprika and garlic/onion powder. Finished the day off with my plank.
My co-workers and I love, LOVE, love to talk about food. Today was no different, so when one of my coworkers started talking soup-my ears perked up quick! I LOVE soup in a probably not so healthy way, especially in the winter time. She mentioned making a carrot soup with curry….”HMMMM,” I thought…that sounds AMAZING.
I will admit the underlying effort to lose the belly fat that this winter has given me as a not so sweet gift fueled my motivation to head to the grocery store after a very busy day at work. I picked up a bag of “horse carrots” as my youngest calls them, shallots, and some fresh herbs so I could make my OH so yummy soup for dinner.
Here’s the recipe and what you will need:
6-8 large “horse” carrots, pealed and chopped
2 shallots, roughly chopped
2 cloves of garlic, smashed
6 cups of organic vegetable stock-low sodium if possible
2 sprigs of fresh thyme
2 pats of unsalted butter
1-2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
Seasoning: Tumeric, Curry, Cayenne pepper, Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Garnish-Crème Fraiche and chives
Get a large sauce pot and heat to medium high heat. Add in your butter and olive oil. Add all the veggies, and sauté until soft. Add your seasonings, but just a pinch at a time to ensure your get the right flavor. Next, add your stock, and bring to a boil. Reduce down to a simmer and let cook for about 25 minutes.
Remove the soup from the heat, and puree with a blender or immersion blender until smooth. Return the soup to the heat, and let simmer for a few additional minutes while you ensure the seasoning is just right. Garnish with crème fraiche and chives, and serve! I accompanied the soup with a yummy shrimp salad (dressing free-just marinated the shrimp in lime juice, salt, pepper, and evoo!) that was the perfect pairing for this spicy soup!
Question-are you a soup eater? What is your favorite kind? Do you enjoy making your own soups?
Ok, so my Three things Thursday post is going to go a little like this:
1. I’ve been at my current job for nearly 10 months now. I’m finally settling in, feeling more comfortable, and really making connections with my staff, peers, and Pathology staff. I’d been told a pay raise was in the works, as my annual merit raise was pennies since I was only with the hospital technically one quarter of last year (June 30th ends the fiscal year for our hospital). Today when checking my pay stub, I saw that my raise kicked in and I smiled. It’s not huge, but it made me feel really good that my hard work is recognized. YAY. Every little bit counts!
2. Today marks the 2 week anniversary of my self mutilation – aka Christmas injury. You can read about it here: https://movinitwithmichelle.com/2014/12/27/christmas-injuries/ I am happy to report that for the first time in 2 weeks, I was able to take a REAL shower without my uber bandaged thumb. The wound is healing NICELY, I am able to cook again, and am looking forward to RUNNING next week!!! Tonight is the first time I have a regular Band-Aid on the wound, but will probably add more padding when I leave the house-just for safety purposes. It’s still very tender, hasn’t closed completely quite yet and is still very bruised. But…it gets better every day, and soon I’ll be back it all with full force, despite lacking a slice of my digit LOL!!
3. We are currently experiencing Polar Vortex #2 with our 3rd day in a row of a crazy artic blast. Temps have plummeted, schools closed, and winds are blowing at top speeds. I also just found out that I’ll be back on single Mom duty for the next month and a half while my husband travels off and on… SOOOO….What does that mean?
COMFORT FOOD!!!! Here’s my take on a healthy beef stroganoff:
What you’ll need:
1 lb of beef chuck roast, cubed, and seasoned with kosher salt and pepper. Place in a bowl, and sprinkle a 1/8 cup of flour (I used gluten free, Namaste brand-my fav!!) Set aside.
1 can of low fat golden mushroom soup/1 cup of low sodium beef stock.
1 white onion, diced
3 gloves of garlic, minced
2 cups of mushrooms, chopped (I used Shitake, but any brand will do)
2 tablespoons of low fat sour cream (add this at the VERY end)
4-5 splashes of Worcestershire sauce
Thyme, chives, and parsley-pinch of each
1 cup of gluten free rice (or the rice/pasta of your choosing), cooked to package directions
Preheat your wide sauce pan with EVOO at medium to high heat. Cook your beef until golden on each side-do not cook through. Remove from the pan, and drain the grease. Add a touch more oil, and sauté your onions, garlic, and mushrooms for 5-7 minutes until tender. Season with salt and pepper.
Add back in the beef, and increase the heat just a touch. In a separate bowl, add the mushroom soup and stock and mix well. Pour over your meat. Add 4-5 splashes of Worcestershire sauce. Season by adding the Thyme, Parsley, and Chives. Lower the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes (I use this time to cook my rice). Add in the sour cream in the last 2 minutes, stir well and get ready to plate. Taste for seasoning, serve, and enjoy!!!
Time for 3 questions!!!
How do you handle recognition/raises at work? Is it frigid where you live? What’s your favorite comfort food?
After my recent MasterChef open call experience, I gave myself a few days to regroup. I pouted a bit having not made it past the first round, watching simple pasta dishes and chicken salad make it through, and then I realized, reality TV is just that…reality. And possibly I was just a bit too boring for ratings. Ha, what little they know…but my story, and my dish wasn’t enough to get me through, so I now need to keep pushing myself forward. Why? Because my dreams are mine, and mine alone, and I am in control of my future. I took that step forward, and I keep telling myself THAT is what matters most.
So finally, after nearly three weeks of no running (and a looming half marathon in my future the second week of November) I decided to lace up and run last week. I ran 2 miles on the tready in the beginning of the week, and took my kids to a fun S’Mores run with my run club. I was on single Mom duty last week, but the girls and I had a blast.
My hubby came home early Saturday afternoon, so we were able to hit our run club dinner.
Sunday I knew I needed to at least attempt a pseudo long run…despite tummy issues I made it 4.5 miles, and simply enjoyed being outside in the beautiful fall weather before #Chiberia hits.
I spent the weekend with my two daughters, embracing fun, shopping, errands, and even housecleaning (to include laundry, ACK). But even though the hubby had reserve duty, I am proud to say my girls were troopers and pitched in with helping around the house.
Both Saturday and Sunday were filled with errands and chores, but we managed to make it fun.
Today, I decided to make a simple soup for dinner, and I am so glad I did after running a very tough and frigid almost 4 miler. I set out today to go for 5 miles, as I did 4 for my longish run last weekend, but the bitter winds slapping me in the face caused me to cut it short….3.8 miles in 37:15. Not my best, but not my worst either.
During this run, I tried….tried so hard to lose myself in the run. But I just couldn’t settle in. I couldn’t lose myself in nature, or my music. So I trucked along, did a second loop in my neighborhood, and finished strong at an average 9:46 pace. I need to get my pace back to under 9:15 or so if I want to run a strong half marathon in May.
For the soup-here is what you’ll need…First, preheat oven to 450, and get your crock pot out and ready.
1 lb lean ground beef
1 lb lean pork sausage
1 handful of panko bread crumbs (can omit if preferred)
kosher salt and pepper to taste
pinch of parsley
pinch of cumin
pinch of cayenne pepper
Mix well, and form meatballs. Bake at 450 degrees for about 20 minutes or until golden brown. Set aside to rest.
1 box of sodium free vegetable stock
Additional 4-6 cups of water
1 medium red onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
4-6 ribs of celery, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
pinch of sage, thyme, cumin, and season with kosher salt and pepper to taste
4-6 splashes of hot sauce
2-3 splashes of liquid smoke
Combine all soup ingredients in your crock pot and cook on high for about 2.5-3 hours, allowing your veggies to still have some crunch. In the last 30 minutes before serving, add your meatballs, and let warm through.