Weekend happenings. Crockpot Vegetable and Chickpea Curry


Happy Monday!

puppy nose

I hope everyone had a mighty fine weekend!

I headed into the weekend with this beautiful sunset.


I mean, really, how can this NOT make you just happy to be alive? So beautiful.

Then, Saturday morning, I felt like I was being stalked while I was eating my cereal.


Um, rude much?

Oh, and I made cookies! Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal cookies!


Click the photo to get the recipe on my Facebook page!

So. Freakin. Good.

Yes, they’re all gone. I couldn’t help myself. I had to make sure the recipe was worth sharing. I did it for you.

Sunday was all kinds of lazy.


Yes, I have more animals but Ginny seemed to be the only one who wanted to be photographed.

She’s a camera hog.

Sunday was SO lazy, I didn’t feel like cooking.

So, I made the crockpot do the work for me.


Om nom nom.

Crockpot Vegetable and Chickpea Curry
makes 6 servings
unless you’re in my house and then you can probably get 8 or 9 servings out of it

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup (1/4-inch thick) slices carrot
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon grated peeled fresh ginger
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 serrano chili, seeded and minced
3 cups cooked chickpeas (aka garbanzo beans), or 2 (15-ounce) cans drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups cubed peeled baking potato (about 1 large)
1 cup coarsely chopped green bell pepper
1 cup (1-inch green beans)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
1 can (14 ounces) vegetable broth
3 cups fresh baby spinach
1 cup light coconut milk
6 lemon wedges

1. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and carrot; cover and cook 5 minutes or until tender. Add curry powder and next 4 ingredients; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly.

2. Place onion mixture in a 5-quart crockpot. Stir in chickpeas and next 8 ingredients. Cover and cook on HIGH 6 hours or until vegetables are tender. (You could definitely cook this on LOW for 8-10 hours.) Add spinach and coconut milk; stir until spinach wilts. *I recommend adding the coconut milk and THEN the spinach. Yes, it will look like you’ve lost your mind and it will never, ever, ever all fit in there but, trust me, it will. Serve with lemon wedges.


Calories 276; Fat 7.2g (sat 1.9g, mono 2.3g, poly 1.3g); Protein 10g; Carbs 44.7g; Fiber 10.6g; Sodium 623mg
Recipe from Cooking Light


1. Do you have pets? Do they stalk you while you’re eating?

2. Did you have a lazy weekend?

– jennifer

Farmers’ Market Quesadillas

Quesadillas – the fat bomb of the Mexican restaurant. They’re usually huge and absolutely loaded down with cheese. Delicious?  Yes, definitely!  A good, healthy choice? Um, no, sorry. Try again. Making them at home is always the way to go because you can control the cheese content; plus, you’re free to add whatever else you want! So, when I found this recipe for Farmers’ Market Quesadillas, I was intrigued. Of course, Thing 2 decided that she needed to escape and suddenly “had plans.” Well, teenagers are ridiculous and she totally missed out! These were fantastic and tasty and are my go-to quesadilla recipe.  Of course, if meat-free isn’t your thing, you can add shredded chicken or pork to the quesadillas. But, they certainly don’t need it. Also, if you prefer a smokier flavor, grill the veggies instead of sauteeing them. Yum!


Farmers’ Market Quesadillas
Recipe from Cooking Light
Serves 12

1 to 2 poblano peppers (I couldn’t find them and used Anaheim peppers instead)
1 large red bell pepper
Cooking spray
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow squash
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup chopped oyster mushrooms (optional, if you don’t do mushrooms)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
8 (8-inch) fat-free flour tortillas
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1. Preheat broiler.

2. Place poblano and bell peppers on a foil-lined baking sheet, broil 10 minutes or until blackened, turning occasionally.


Place poblano and bell peppers in a zip-top bag; seal. Let stand 15 minutes.  Peel poblano and bell peppers; discard seeds and membranes. Cut peeled peppers into thin strips.

3. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Coat with cooking spray. Add onion; saute 3 minutes or until onion is lightly browned.


Add squash and garlic; saute 3 minutes.


Add pepper strips and mushrooms; cook 5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and moisture evaporates, stirring frequently. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.


4. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons Monterey Jack and 1 tablespoon goat cheese over each of 4 tortillas; top with 2/3 cup vegetable mixture.  Sprinkle 2 tablespoons Monterey Jack, 1 tablespoon goat cheese, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cilantro over each vegetable-topped tortilla; top with remaining tortillas.


5. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Place 1 quesadilla in pan; cook 5 minutes on each side or until tortillas are crisp. Repeat procedure with remaining quesadillas. 


Cut each quesadilla into 6 wedges.


Serving size: 2 wedges
Calories 140; Fat 5.3g (sat 2.8g, mono 1.2g, poly 0.2g); Protein 6g; Carb 17.9g; Fiber 1.5g; Chol 12mg; Iron 1.2mg; Sodium 360mg; Calcium 132mg

Spicy Garden Chili

Ah, chili – one of the best dishes for a cool evening’s meal. It was 35 degrees when I woke up this morning (um, I live in Florida!  Okay, I live in northwest Florida so it’s not as warm as, say, Miami, but still!). I had 11 miles on my calendar for today and all I could think about was chili for dinner. You know, thinking about food while running isn’t the best thing to do. Thoughts of food tend to make people hungry and you should definitely not be hungry during a run – really makes things difficult. Thankfully,  I fueled before I ran so I survived without any issues.  🙂

Anyway….chili! There are so many types, varieties and methods of cooking. I found a great recipe for a vegetarian chili and decided to go with that. Meatless, packed with veggies, hearty because it’s thickened with bulgur and just the right amount of spice – yum! Of course, you can adjust the seasonings to your preference if you want it spicier or less spicy. All that’s left to do is whip up some cornbread and break out the bowls and ladle up some deliciousness. Enjoy!

Spicy Garden Chili
Recipe courtesy of Cooking Light
Serves 9

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 cup chopped mushrooms
3 tablespoons minced seeded jalapeno pepper
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons chopped fresh oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups water
1/2 cup uncooked bulgur or cracked wheat
2 (14.5 ounce) cans diced tomatoes, undrained
1 (10 3/4 ounce) can tomato puree
1 cup frozen whole-kernel corn
1 (16 ounce) can cannellini beans, drained
1 (16 ounce) can red beans, drained
9 tablespoons shredded Monterey Jack cheese with jalapeno peppers
9 tablespoons shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
9 tablespoons low-fat sour cream

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and next 6 ingredients (through cumin); saute 3 minutes.

Stir in water, bulgur, tomatoes, and tomato puree; bring to a boil.

Reduce heat; simmer 30 minutes or until tender. Stir in corn and beans (I added half a can of black beans for more color and yumminess!); cook for 5 minutes.

Ladle chili into bowls; top with cheeses and sour cream, if desired.

Calories 267 (29% from fat); Fat 8.6g (sat 3.7g, mono 3g, poly 1.2g); Protein 13.4g; Carb 38.2g; Fiber 7g; Cholesterol 16mg; Iron 3.9mg; Sodium 520mg; Calcium 206mg