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Mexican Fiesta Pasta

This dish is a nice change from the regular pasta dish. A little smokey southwestern seasoning, black beans and few others ingredients give you a completely different flavor profile

I made this all in one pot. That means less dishes to wash and more time doing more pleasurable things.

  • 16 oz. brown rice spaghetti
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp garlic, minced
  • 1 pint grape tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 15.5 oz. can black beans, rinsed, drained
  • 1 c corn, frozen
  • 1 tbsp Smokey Southwestern Seasoning
  • 1 c vegetable broth, plus more as needed for sautéing
  • 1 tsp cornstarch
  • 1 avocado, cubed
  • cilantro,chopped, garnish
  • lime wedge, garnish

Prepare spaghetti according to package instructions. Drain. Rinse. Set aside.

In same pot that you cooked your pasta in add onions and sauce. Add vegetable broth if needed to keep the onions from sticking to the pan.

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Add garlic to onions and cooks until fragrant.

Add tomatoes, black beans, corn and Smokey Southwestern Seasoning. Cook until heated through.

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Add pasta to veggies and stir.

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Whisk vegetable broth and cornstarch together to make a slurry. Add slurry to pasta and stir until pasta is coated. This is a light flavorful sauce.

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Plate pasta and add avocado cubes. The cubes add so much more flavor and creaminess to the pasta when you smash them. Garnish with a lime wedge and cilantro.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

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Peanut Noodles with Vegetables

What is nice about this recipe is that you probably have all the ingredients in your refrigerator or pantry. This recipe is vegan, however you could add some chicken to it for your carnivores and it would be just as good.

I am actually eating this while I type this post, because it is that good and I could not wait. There are a few advantages to this dish. 1) I used the leftover vegetables that I had roasted for the Forbidden Rice and roasted Vegetables Bowl. 2) This dish only takes 20 minutes to make.  3) You can serve it hot or cold. Either way it is delicious.

  • 8 oz pasta of choice
  • 1 c pasta water, reserved before draining pasta
  • 2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated
  • 3 cloves, garlic, grated
  • 1/4 c peanut butter
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 3 tbsp coconut aminos (low sodium soy sauce can be substituted)
  • 3-4 c chopped vegetables
  • Sprinkle of red pepper flakes
  • Cilantro, fresh, garnish

Pasta:

Cook the noodles according to the package instructions. Reserve 1c of pasta water, then drain well in a colander.

Sauce:

Combine Pasta water, ginger, garlic, peanut butter, maple syrup and coconut aminos in a medium size saucepan over medium-high heat.

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Stir sauce continuously until well combined.

Pulling it together:

Return pasta to pot that they were cooked in. Add vegetables and sauce.

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Stir. The sauce will thicken and stick to the pasta. Sprinkle red pepper flakes and cilantro. Stir.

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Serve. Eat. Enjoy.

Note: This recipe serves 4. However, you could double it and have leftovers for lunches the next day. Also, use whatever veggies you have on hand. I did and it turned out great.

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Traditions

The past week I have came across probably over a hundred posts regarding Christmas traditions. It got me thinking about ours and how they have changed or evolved over the years.

For many years we pastored and a lot of our traditions were centered around our church.  We always had a children’s program. That was always fun, you never knew what was going to come out of the mouth of babes. We would have a Candlelight Christmas Eve Service with Communion. It was only an hour long, but it was a wonderful time, reminding us of the true meaning of Christmas. We would then gather at my in-laws and have a meal, nothing extravagant, but we were all together. Sometimes our boys and their cousins would stay at Mamaw and Papaw’s house Christmas Eve night. Somehow Santa always knew where the kids were going to be in the morning.

Our boys always knew why we were celebrating Christmas, Jesus. Santa was just fun, and that was okay. Christmas Eve night George (my incredible husband of almost 33 years) and I would fill the boys stockings and lay out a few things to keep them occupied until we got up Christmas morning. What is funny is that as the boys grew older they slept in longer and we were waking them up to see what Santa brought.

Some Christmas mornings I would make Cinnamon Rolls (Just like Cinnabon – No lie), or a Breakfast Casserole. I plan on make a Breakfast Casserole this year. I am still working on a gluten-free cinnamon roll recipe. I sure do miss those cinnamon rolls. Anyway – traditions.

I would say over the past decade we have been making up stockings for my in-laws. That has been fun. Mamaw (mother in-law) loves Christmas. We always put in some Christmas themed magazines and her favorite candy, plus some other goodies in her stocking. My mother in-law loves Christmas, so much that there are some decorations that stay up all year. For a while, every year I would paint a miniature house/building and give that to my Father in-law for Christmas. Now he has quite a collection that have a permanent place on their mantle all year round.

Now that the boys are men, 28, 26 and 24 years old. I know, where does the time go? Our traditions have changed. The past few years we have been having all the boys with their girlfriends over Christmas Eve Night. We have a no fuss buffet of simple fare: Meatballs, Turkey Sliders, Crudites with dip, Assorted Fruit and Dip, and Cookies, Easy. Lots of stories are shared, presents opened, and tons of laughter. It is wonderful.

Christmas day we all head to Mamaw and Papaw’s house (the in-laws) and have lunch. All the cooking duties are divided up so it is not a burden to just one person. I am usually in charge of the veggies, rolls, and desserts. This year my Green Beans with Walnuts was requested. I am still thinking on the desserts.DSC_0037 6

Of coarse there is presents to open. Soon after, the boys and their girlfriends leave and participate in the festivities of their girlfriends’ families. Now that they are grown we do not get to keep them all to ourselves. Just like everything else, things change and evolve. There will be a time when they will have their own traditions. My hope is that we will have a part in what they choose for their own lives, future families and traditions.

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Have a Merry and Joyous Christmas and a Happy and Blessed New Year!

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Easy Fruit Cobbler

I have been thinking about making a cobbler for a few days. I had some berries frozen in the freezer that would work just fine. That is what is nice about this recipe. You can use fresh, frozen and even canned fruit and they all turn out wonderfully. Serve this with a scoop of ice-cream or whipped cream and you have a easy and tasty dessert in no time.

This recipe has no refined sugars, or gluten, and can be adapted to be a Vegan recipe.

Place the stick of butter in a 9×9 or 11×7 pan. Place pan in oven and preheat oven during this time to melt butter. Melt butter until browned. The browning of the butter will add a richer, slightly nutty flavor to the butter.

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Meanwhile, blend together flour, maple sugar, baking powder, salt, milk, and vanilla. blend until well combined.

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Add batter to browned butter. Do not stir. Sprinkle fruit and pecans on top of the batter.

The pecans give the cobbler some added texture.

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DSC_0037 12Bake for 60 minutes, or until golden brown.

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DSC_0035 20Serve with ice cream or whipped cream. Share. Eat. Enjoy.

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