Posts Tagged ‘vegetarian’

I thought of this recipe on a whim, one day.  It was my turn to make dinner that night and I had been craving grilled mushrooms (I LOVE MUSHROOMS!).  I had the feta and brucetta mix at home and I knew mushroom usually got marinated with balsamic vinegar. So with a little thought I came up with this ….. I hope you like it!  The flavors of the balsamic, the cheese and the tomato meld together well.

You will need …

Lg Portobello Mushroom Caps (however many you want to make,  I usually make 6 to 8 so I have leftovers)

balsamic vinegar

Feta Cheese, plain or seasoned

Brucetta Mix (in a jar) from Trader Joes  (I LOVE this stuff!)

What to do …

In a large flat dish, lay out the mushroom caps, fin side up.

Drizzle with balsamic vinegar then head to the gym or go for a run.

When you return, heat up the grill to medium  heat.

Once the grill is heated, and before you put the mushrooms on the grill, turn the caps over to drain out any excess vinegar, preferably in a bowl and not over your grill 🙂

Grill the caps to your liking, usually 10 -15 minutes. Flipping them over, occasionally.

Flip the caps, on the grill, so that the fins face up.

Fill the fin areas with some feta cheese (to your liking) and depending on the size of your caps.

Close the grill cover for a few minutes, so that the cheese warms up and gets a little gooey.

Next top with the bruchetta mix, about a heaping Tbsp. or more, if your mushrooms are on steroids.

Close grill cover for a few minutes to warm up the buchetta.

Remove from grill and serve with a spinach side or green beans and don’t forget the beer!


Donna and Matt


Black Bean Chili over Rice

Posted: November 1, 2011 in Recipes
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Black Bean Chili Over Rice

I originally found this recipe at . I have made it a few times and finally tweaked it to our liking.  It is very satisfying and great for those cold Sunday game days in front of the boob tube (or boob plasma? eh, nevermind).

What you will need:

3 tsp olive oil (we used our Habanero infused olive oil – for added heat)

1 medium onion, diced

1 red pepper, diced

1.5 large carrots, grated with a microplane (this helps to add some thickness to the chili)

6 lg jalapeno, optional  (we like heat!)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 Tbsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin

1 – 15oz can fire roasted tomatoes (YUM!)

1 cup veggie stock

2 – 15oz cans black beans, rinsed

1 cup frozen corn OR 1 can Mexicorn

salt and pepper

Cayenne pepper to add at the end if more heat is needed.

What to do:

In a medium stainless steel pan, heat the oil until hot.

Add onions, peppers, jalapeno and carrots  and cook until tender.

Add the garlic and cook for an additional 30 seconds or so.

Add the chili powder and cumin and cook another 1-2 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, stock, beans, and corn.

Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium/medium low to simmer for about 15 minutes.

Add salt, pepper to taste and the cayenne if you require more heat.

Prepare the rice according to the package instructions. I used left over veggie stock instead of water.

Scoop the chili over a bowl of rice and enjoy!

OH! Don’t forget the cheddar cheese!


Donna and Matt

Garden Vegetable Soup

Posted: October 16, 2011 in Recipes
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This soup is a variation of a recipe that we got out of one of those supermarket cook book magazines (Cuisine at Home  – Splendid Soups and Spectacular Sides  pg 8). This was the first time that we made it and it came out really good. We hope that you like this hearty and healthy soup.

If you count weight watcher points, this one is practically free!


1 cup onion, diced

1 cup carrots, diced

1 cup celery, diced

1/2 cup dry white wine

6 cups vegetable broth

2 cups small red potatoes, quartered

2 cups of cauliflower florets

2 bay leaves

3 cups tomatoes, diced

2 cups fresh or frozen corn

1 cup fresh green beans, trimmed

2 tbsp. chopped parsley

salt and pepper to taste

1 cup of mushrooms (optional)


Saute onions, carrots and celery in olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Use a little salt and pepper here. Cook for 5 minutes, or until vegetables begin to soften.

De-glaze with wine, simmer until nearly evaporated. Then add the mushroom and cook until the mushrooms start to soften.

Stir in broth, potatoes, cauliflower and bay leaves. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.

Add tomatoes, corn, beans, parsley salt and pepper. Return to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.

Serve immediately, don’t simmer for to long because the potatoes will get to soft and they will fall apart.

A few suggestions you can also do with this soup … add rice  or add white beans for added protein and fiber, or  add quinoa. You can change the veggies as well –  use summer squash and/or zuccini (we omitted these because I am not a squash fan). And don’t forget to serve this soup with your favorite whole grain bread.

We hope you like our idea for a garden vegetable soup. Mix yours up, there are limitless possibilities. Let us know what you add to yours.


Donna and Matt

Grilled Pizza

Posted: October 8, 2011 in Recipes
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Who doesn’t love pizza? Unfortunately, pizza can be packed with tons of calories.  Up to 300 – 400 calories per slice depending on the pizza, and who eats just one slice?  Check out our SUPER easy and SUPER healthy version of a thin crust pizza with fresh ingredients.

We hope you enjoy this as much as we do!  Oh, it also goes great with BEER!

What You’ll Need:

1 Josephs pita pocket  (only 60 calories per loaf!)

2-4 Tbsp.  pizza sauce with NO ADDED fructose corn syrup or any other unpronouncable ingredients.

chopped peppers

chopped onions

chopped jalepenos

1/4 –  1/2 cup of reduced fat Italian blend cheese (or whatever kind you like)

sliced olives

reduced fat feta cheese

sliced mushrooms

and whatever else tickles your fancy when it comes to pizza 🙂

What To Do:

Preheat the grill, get the temperature to around 400-450 deg. Then turn the temprature down to low.

Meanwhile, fold a piece of aluminum foil just slightly larger than the pita pocket, and spray with a non stick cooking spray. Or coat lightly with some olive oil.

Place the pita pocket on the foil and cover it with all of your fresh toppings. Be creative here,  there are all sorts of things you can use; fresh garlic, different cheeses, artichokes, turkey peperoni, fresh basil from your herb garden,  left over grilled veggies from last nights dinner, etc… there are endless combinations that you can create.

We like ours with the fresh basil, onions, peppers and olives. We also tend to place the veggies under the cheese, except for the olives, as you can see.

Now place the pizzas on the top section of your grill. If you don’t have a top section that is OK, just watch close if the crust gets to close to the direct flame.

Cook the pizzas for about 8-10 minutes. Cooking times may vary according to you grill or  how you like your pizza cooked. Cook until the edges are a little crisp and the cheese begins to brown.

After the pizzas are cooked carefully remove them from the grill, the foil will be hot. Slice them into quarters and Enjoy! And yes, I made a smiley face on my pizza in honor of World Smile Day  that was on Oct 7th.

We hope you like our healthier version of pizza. Give us some feedback –  what did you put on pizza?


Donna and Matt

Roasted Chickpeas

Posted: October 4, 2011 in Recipes
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I found this healthy snack recipe at Namely Marly and it is SO yummy.  A great snack when watching a movie with your significant other.  I give full credit to Namely Marly for this recipe, but here is how I made it to my liking…

You will need …

Large can of Chickpeas (I used a 29 oz can)

Olive Oil

Salt and/or pepper or you favorite seasoning (I am using Pampered Chefs Red Thai Curry rub – I love Indian flavors!)

Preheated oven to 375 degrees

What to do ….

Drain and rinse the peas then soak them in clean water to help remove excess salt.  Then repeat.

Drain one last time and spread chickpeas onto a few layers of paper towel.  Remove loose skins and any pieces you do not find worthy.  Place another layer of paper towel on top and gentle roll around the peas to help the drying process and to loosen more skins.

Lightly spray or oil a metal baking sheet and spread  the chickpeas on the sheet into one layer.  Bake for 40 minutes.

DO NOT do what I did the first time I made this recipe.  To save time, I coated the peas in olive oil and seasoned them before baking. Doing this, did not allow the chickpeas to roast properly.  They remained moist instead of drying out.

After 40 minutes in the oven, remove the chickpeas and place into a mixing bowl. Add 1 Tbsp oil (I used Safflower but you can use olive oil.  All our olive oil bottles are currently being infused with herbs from the garden) and your seasoning. Mix until it is to your liking.

You can stop here or you can take it a little further, as I like to make this recipe….

Because we like our snacks with a little more crunch, I went on to brown the chickpeas in a stainless steel skillet.

Coat the bottom of the skillet with a little oil. Heat over high heat. Add the chickpeas when the oil is hot enough so that a flick of water from your finger tips dances on top if the oil. Brown the chickpeas to your liking. When down, move the peas into a bowl and enjoy!  They are best when served warm, but they are also good when cooled.

Store in an airtight container.

Tonight I will be enjoying my seasoned chickpeas with some Peak Organics Pomegranate Wheat Ale.  I love this beer! It is flavored just enough but without losing the flavor of the beer, itself.

By the way, when I first made this recipe, it was the first time I had ever eaten chickpeas (not even hummus!)