Lunchtime with the Fuller’s

OK I’m feeling veggie again. So this week is going to be mainly vegetarian meals. But let me do a side bar on my daughter.

So I am sitting at my desk and she starts growling and I asked her “are you growling at me?” she states “yes like a tiger” and she comes over to me and starts growling at me. In turn I begin acting like I was afraid like she was going to eat me and she did ūüôā She has never really initiated that before so excited.

Now back to Saturday’s lunch. Today I made a pesto stuffed zucchini and I was a bit apprehensive because:
1. It required work and
2. My inner unhealthy girl wanted a burger with some fries and an apple pie with a Starbucks on the side.

With that being said I made it anyways. So here is a picture:

 

This is what it looked like after baking yummy.

Here is the recipe:
I used 3 large zucchini
4 oz of mozzella cheese cut into small chunks
1/2 cup of shredded paramesan cheese
1/2 cup pesto sauce
1/4 walnuts (the recipe said pine nut but I didn’t have those)
and 1 container of cherry or grape tomatoes roughly chopped.

Cut the zucchini in half and scoop out all of the flesh, you can make bread or muffins or pancakes with the flesh, freeze it or trash it (although that would be a sad waste). Set them aside in a roasting pan.

Then in a small bowl add the chopped tomatoes and mozzarella, pesto, walnuts and shredded parmesan and mix well together. Then spoon mixture into the scooped out zucchini, add about 1 cup of water to the bottom of the roasting pan so the zucchini don’t dry out on the outside and bake on 375 degrees for 45 minutes.

Serve with a salad or another accompanying veggie and viola your meal is served. This was filling yet light and the kids loved them.

I hope you enjoy as much as we did. Not sure if I am going to post dinner as tonight I’m making tomato soup and grilled cheese sandwiches.

Until next time wishing you
Health and Wellness
Charmaine

 

My plate

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Dinner Night Wednesday 2-13-13

So tonight I created Mushroom Goat Cheese Roulade with Tomato Sauce. Labor intensive, a bit pricey but worth the time and money. Next time this will be a Sunday dish and not a week day dish.

 

Ingredients
6 tomatoes diced
2 4 oz containers of goat cheese (this is your cost)
3 shallots minced
3 cloves of garlic minced
Oregeno 1/2 tsp
2 containers of mushrooms thinly sliced
1 box of lasagna cooked

in a large skillet saute the garlic and onions for about 2-4 minutes basically until tender then add the mushroom and saute until tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Then add oregano and remove from fire.

Take lasagna lay out on counter top. Cut noodles in half and fill with mushroom mixture down center leaving about 1/2 inch on each edge for rolling. Prior to rolling add goat cheese crumbles into each noodle strip.

Take your baking pan and add diced tomato mixture to the bottom of pan. Once noodles are stuffed roll and place in pan and cover with rest of diced tomatoes.

Bake for 20 minutes, remove from oven and sprinkle with fresh basil.

Mine was served with a Kale salad with blood oranges and a balsamic and honey vinaigrette.

 

vinaigrette

Ingredients:
Kale
1 blood orange
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tblspn olive oil
1 tblspn rice vinegar
1 tblspn honey
mix everything but Kale into small dish, place a lid on it and shake.
cut up oranges into segments and mix with vinigrette

Serve along side Goat Cheese rolls.

Enjoy
Wishing you love and blessings
Charmaine

Tuesday Night Dinner 2-12-13

Tonight as promised African Vegetable Stew. I absolutely LOVE this recipe. It’s hearty , it’s savory, it’s sweet it is vegetarian nirvana for me. So, here goes:

Beginning Stages

Ready to be served

Dinner’s Ready

Ingredients:
1 16 oz can of Chick Peas (Garbanzo Beans)
1 14.5 oz can of Roasted Garlic Chicken Broth
1-2 sweet potatoes diced into 1/4 inch chucks (aka they must be small you want them to cook fast)
1 medium onion sliced
2 cloves of garlic diced
1 big bunch of spinach
1-2 tblspn of olive oil
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes

salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
Place onions and garlic into pan and saute until translecent
Then add sweet potatoes and saute’ for about 5 minutes
Next add the broth, spices and chickpeas and allow mixture to simmer for 15-20 minutes then add a 1/2 cup of water
Final step add coarsely chopped spinach and allow to wilt about 5 minutes.
Pull off stove and serve with rice or cococus
Nothing else needed, this stew is a meal within itself.

Enjoy.

Love and Blessings
Charmaine

Tomorrow’s dinner: ¬†Mushroom Goat Cheese Roulades with Tomato Sauce

Monday Night Dinner

So this week is a Vegetarian week. I often go through these periods where I remove meat and just do a week of pure veggies! I have found ways to make my family love it so I’m sharing it with you.

Tonight’s dinner is Oven Baked Vegetarian Samosas. I know it sounds complicated but all it basically is a potato pie. That’s it, add the veggies you want and make it your own.

This is the potato mixture

Finished product, I used whole wheat flour to make my dough

So here is my receipe, you feel free to alter as you like but it took me about 45 minutes to make. ¬†Now that’s give or take if you’re making your own crust, if you have pieces already ready and if you make it from start to finish without getting distracted. ¬†This is a great hand held meal.

I make my own pie crust but feel free to purchase yours if you wish. I’ve been using whole wheat flour so that explains why my crusts are really brown.

Ingredients:

  • 2 potatos, peeled and diced
  • salt to taste
  • 1 bag of mixed vegetables
  • 2 tsp curry powder
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • pepper
  • 1/4 -1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1 egg beaten with a splash of water

You take the potatoes and boil like you are making mashed potatoes. Once they are tender drain water from them and place them back in the same pot you boiled them in. ¬†Then take your seasonings and bagged veggies and add in kinda smashing them as you go. ¬†Once that’s done add a bit of chicken broth to moisten it and you’re done.

When that mixture is complete begin taking your pie crust and cut to your desired shape, if you have a cookie cutter even better. I didn’t so I had to cut mine out. ¬†Fill with a tablespoon of the mixture, seal ¬†the edges, then brush with the egg wash mixture.

Bake for 15-20 minutes, let cool for a minute or two then enjoy.  You can make it with a salad or just eat alone.

Great quick meal. You can add or subtract from it as you see fit, play around with the seasonings.

I hope you and your family enjoy this filling and yummy vegetarian recipe.  Tomorrow West African Vegetable Stew.

Love and Blessings

Charmaine

Toxins Toxins Everywhere

So in the total quest to annihilate toxins from all sources we have changed a few things around our home. I figured since we are doing all of this hard work on the protocol that I might as well do what I could to eliminate toxins from as many avenues as I could.

So, I started making my own lotion, you would be surprised at what is in our lotions (even the good ones) the toxic load would make you want to go and wash it off. I started making my own lotion about a year ago truly but I didn’t stick with it because it was too hard aka I didn’t feel like it. But now that I am truly trying to clean us out I gave it another go and this stuff is better than the stuff in the store. I use a mixture of coconut oil and cold pressed castor oil. One part castor oil two – three parts coconut oil depending on how oily or creamy you want your mixture. I add a bit of essential oil to the mix and viola heaven in a container.

homemade lotion this one has less coconut oil

This one has more coconut oil, not sure if you can see the thicker consistency.

Next I decided to attack the body wash, and exchanged that with Goats Milk Soap from City Girls Soap here in Michigan, at some point I will probably try and make my own but for now a soap with seven simple ingredients that I can read, really floats my boat.

Soap box

I break my bars in half so that it will last longer

 

I also changed out my clothes washing detergent and fabric softener. If any of you have kids with breathing issues or if you have them yourself, scented ¬†detergents and fabric¬†softeners¬†are not your friend. ¬†Even the unscented variety can cause trouble when I find the article again I’ll post it here. ¬†I traded my washing detergent in for Eco Nuts. ¬†Now what are Eco Nuts you may ask, they are a berry that grows in the¬†Himalayas¬†that¬†naturally¬†produces soap. ¬†How cool is that, the company that sells the product allows the berries to grow in the wild so no pesticides no growth hormones. ¬†The berries don’t need pesticides because insects naturally don’t like them.

What the Eco Nuts look like along with the washing bag. Each nut lasts up to 10 washes

I traded my fabric softer in for Wool Dryer Balls.  The first set I purchased off of Amazon, $20 for three of them. Right after I purchased them another natural mom put a post on her Facebook page on how to make your own. I will be making my own next, because it is less expensive and I can add essential oils to the center for scented laundry!

My well used dryer ball. These are great because I don’t have to worry about the kids using too many.

I have also started making my own dressings. Have you read the back of your dressing bottles lately? For instance, most ranch dressings(probably the most popular flavor) have High Fructose Corn Syrup (I’ll talk about the evils of that and autism later), sugar, disodium guanylate (close relative to MSG). What did my dressing have in it? Hellman’s Olive Oil¬†Mayonnaise¬†1 cup, sour cream 1/2 cup, salt, pepper,¬†italian¬†seasonings, onion powder and garlic powder, is it perfect, no but less additives and¬†preservatives¬†than the bottled stuff.

Many of our packaged foods have so many chemicals and additives that it’s¬†original¬†form is lost. ¬†When grocery shopping I am now beginning to stick to the outside¬†aisles¬†for the majority of my food, as the inner aisles contain the majority of your pre-packaged, processed foods that have shelf lives for way too long.

homemade ranch dressing

I say all of that to say this. While we are healing our children and ourselves, try and remove as many of the external toxins as possible that can be gotten through food, health and beauty products and household cleaning products.

In the upcoming weeks I am going to begin making a lot of my own cleaners and health and beauty products. ¬†I’m going to rid us of the toxins one product at a time. ¬†Please feel free to ask me any questions. I don’t know everything but I can try and find an answer and pull a resource.

Many of these changes are often less expensive than going to the store and purchasing it off the shelf. ¬†Here’s a rule of thumb, “if it has a¬†commercial¬†or a coupon, it’s ¬†most likely toxic.” Even some of the products toted as “green” turn it over read the label, if you don’t understand what’s in it, Google it. But now and understand what you are putting on and in your body.

Please, Please, Please do not go out and throw all of your products and food out on a count of this one blog post. ¬†This post was intended to educate and inform, do as you see fit for you and your family and do what you financially can at this time to lower your toxic load. Take your time as this is hard work. It’s hard to change a family that’s used to Dove, Tide, Downy and¬†Hawaiian¬†Punch with¬†Pepperidge¬†Farm Cookies. ¬†Showing them that similar things can still be good or better is truly a show them type of deal. ¬†So be patient, in the case of my family of five we have been on this journey for a little over two years and everyone is finally getting the hang of it and getting used to many of the changes.

If you have any tips, please share them with me as I am still learning too on this journey and would love the input.

Love & Blessings

Charmaine

 

Some of my favorite blogs for learning right now

Conveying Awareness

Her blog is filled with great information, she is also a Dr. Sears LEAN coach (will be blogging about those classes later) and is very helpful.

Natural Frugal and Raising 6 Kids

This ladies page is phenomenal, she has tips and recipes to make your life toxin free.

Raw Healthy You

Both her Facebook page and blog are full of information.  Hoping I can get her out to meet some parents to talk about healthy eating for not only us but our children.

Enjoy some of my favorites.