Tag Archives: Weeknight Meals

Couscous with Broccoli and Turkey-Zucchini Meatballs

Couscous with Broccoli and Turkey-Zucchini Meatballs | real food. home made.

Ingredients:

For the meatballs:

  • 1 lb ground turkey (from a local farm)
  • 1 small zucchini, grated
  • 1/2 an onion, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 egg white (from a local farm)
  • 1 T Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/2 t italian seasoning (salt-free)
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs

For the dish:

  • 1 cup israeli couscous
  • 1 1/4 cups free range chicken broth
  • 1 large bunch of broccoli, chopped then steamed
  • 6 oz cherry tomatoes, halved
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 2 T basil infused extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 t italian seasoning (salt-free)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • parmesan cheese for serving (optional)

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 400º and mix all meatball ingredients together by hand in a bowl.  Form into roughly 16 balls, and place onto a wire rack nestled on top of a sheet tray.
  2. Bake for about 22 minutes, or until cooked through.
  3. Meanwhile, steam your broccoli in a wooden basket on one half of the stove, while you cook your couscous in a smaller pan on the other side.  Steam the broccoli until it is tender but retains the last bit of crunch.
  4. To cook the couscous, bring your chicken broth to a boil, add in the couscous, cover, reduce heat, and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  5. Meanwhile, prepare the rest of your ingredients, adding them into a large bowl.  As your elements finish cooking, add them to the bowl as well.  For the meatballs, I chopped them into quarters.  You will not need the whole batch, so you can save some for a midnight snack – or to use in another dish tomorrow.
  6. Top with parmesan cheese, if desired, and serve hot!

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Smoky Thyme Sweet Potato Hash

Sweet potatoes are such a staple in my life; they can be prepared so many ways, and are appropriate for every occasion.  I always like to have 1 or 2 on hand so I can whip up a meal at a moment’s notice without having to go to the grocery store.  Today I felt like brunch, so I came up with this dish.

Smoky Thyme Sweet Potato Hash | real food. home made.

Smoky Thyme Sweet Potato Hash

Serves: 3

Ingredients:

  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and grated
  • 2 large shallots, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1/2 t black pepper
  • 1/2 t smoked paprika
  • 1 T fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1-2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • grated fontina cheese (optional)
  • 3 pastured eggs, over easy

Method:

  1. Mix the first batch of ingredients together in a bowl.
  2. Heat EVOO in a large pan or skillet with lid over medium heat.
  3. Add hash mixture, and alternate between frying and steaming with the lid on, stirring intermittently.  (If  you want to attempt to make them super crispy, more power to you, but I’ve never been able to master the technique.)
  4. Prepare your over-easy eggs.
  5. When your hash is done cooking, put a scoop on your plate, a few pinches of cheese (if desired), and the egg on top.

Smoky Thyme Sweet Potato Hash | real food. home made.

Grant likes his with sri racha.  I have a feeling I am going to be making this a lot for dinner this winter.  I hate going to the grocery store after work in sub zero temperatures!  “Iiiiiiiiit’s SMOKY THYME” is surely going to become my new catch phrase.

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Filed under Breakfast, Brunch, Dinner Ideas, Gluten Free, Vegetarian

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage | real food. home made.

This is a fantastic quick, simple recipe to have in your arsenal.  In a pinch, grab some sausage and brussels sprouts on your way home from work and you can have a delicious dinner on the table in no time.  I almost always have pesto, parmesan, garlic and a variety of whole wheat pastas in stock at home.  One time, the store had no brussels sprouts, so I roasted up some zucchini “coins” instead.  That was okay, but nothing like the brussels sprouts.

Pesto Pasta with Brussels Sprouts and Apple Chicken Sausage

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb brussels sprouts, trimmed and sliced in half
  • 3 T extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 t each of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12-16 oz whole wheat orecchiette or Tinykada brown rice pasta or pasta of choice (I use 14 oz)
  • 4 chicken & apple sausage links, sliced medium (or any other sausage that you like, just make sure you recognize all the ingredients on the label)
  • 5 cloves garlic, sliced thin
  • 1/2 cup pesto (I never dirty a measuring cup, just spoon in however much you prefer)
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese, plus extra for serving

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400º.
  2. Slice brussels sprouts, and add them to a bowl with 2 T EVOO and the salt and pepper.  Mix gently and spread them out on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil.
  3. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until sprouts are tender and crispys are crispy.
  4. Cook your pasta according to package directions while slicing your garlic and sausage links.
  5. When pasta is cooked, add it to a large bowl with the pesto, parmesan, and the finished brussels sprouts.
  6. In a large skillet, heat 1 T of olive oil over medium-high heat and cook your sausage links until they are browned.  During the last minute of cooking, add in the garlic.
  7. Add your garlic and sausage to the bowl with the rest of the ingredients, stir together, and then serve!

Adapted from Gimme Some Oven

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Turkey Apple Cherry Jam Sandwich -or- “Jammy Sammy”

Turkey Apple Cherry Jam Sandwich -or- "Jammy Sammy" | real food. home made.

I’ve been planning to make this sandwich ever since I got home from Traverse City, the Cherry Capital of the World (most likely).  Last night, however, the biggest flood in recent history hit our region, and I almost couldn’t make it to the grocery store!  Our basement flooded knee-deep, and we spent all of last night and all of today pumping out the water, throwing out everything that was wet, and re-organizing everything that was salvageable. I found time to bike to the market, thankfully, so I could put a nice dinner on the table after such a stressful and hectic 24 hours.

Turkey Apple Cherry Jam Sandwich -or- “Jammy Sammy”

Ingredients:

Method:

  1. Slice your fruits and vegetables (I use a mandoline to make life easy!)
  2. Toast the bread
  3. Make the jam sandwich!
  4. Enjoy.

Turkey Apple Cherry Jam Sandwich -or- "Jammy Sammy" | real food. home made.

(What I do next is chop up a heart of romaine, divide it between two lunchbots, add my extra tomato, turkey, apple, and onion slices, and top with dried cherries.  Perfect for mine and Grant’s lunch tomorrow.)

After losing so many “valuables” I definitely have a greater appreciation for the invaluables.  It’s been very cathartic going through everything, to say the least.  Here is a photo I salvaged of me and my dad from July 1995 in Rapid City, MI.

IMG_4444b

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Filed under Brunch, Dinner Ideas, Lunch, Sandwiches

Turkey Hushwee Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Turkey Hushwee Stuffed Sweet Potatoes | real food. home made.

Turkey Hushwee Stuffed Sweet Potatoes

Serves: 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes
  • 1 lb ground turkey or beef  , preferably from a local farm
  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 T ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 t ground cloves
  • 1/2 t ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 t course black pepper
  • 1 1/2 t sea salt
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1 T grass-fed butter, from a local farm or kerrygold
  • small handful parsley

Method:

1. Immediately when you get home from work, preheat oven to 400º.

2. Pierce 4 medium sweet potatoes with a fork several times, give them a once over with a pat of butter and bake for 45-60 minutes or until done.

3. Dice your onion, then mix your spices together in a small ramekin.

4. Heat 1 T butter in a deep pan over medium/high heat.  Add onion, and sauté 4-5 minutes.  Add the meat and spices, and cook 8-10 minutes while mixing with a wooden spoon until cooked.

5. Toast the pine nuts in a single layer at 350º until just golden brown.  Keep an eye on them!  I use my toaster oven for this.

6. Stir the pine nuts into the meat mixture and wait for the potatoes to finish up in the oven.

7. Get your parsley plucked and ready.

8. Remove sweet potatoes from oven and cut each one in half.  Top with meat mixture and garnish with parsley.

9. Serve and enjoy!

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Filed under Dinner Ideas, Gluten Free, Paleo