Tag Archives: Bell Peppers

Ghoulish Peppers say Hello

Hello everyone!

It feels like forever since I’ve written. Though you know what? It probably has been forever!

I’ve just been preoccupied with other things like rating restaurants and such. Which is good, I mean it means I am still writing, however it just means I am not writing and working on my own pride and joy. I’ve been going to restaurants like crazy! All because the new man in my life feels the need to satisfy my belly with good food. Thank heavens that he too is a food enthusiast and finds joy when eating food. Best of all he has a sweet tooth and seems to like the idea of getting fat due to my baked goods! Love it!

Anyway it is my favourite month of the year! The month of Halloween!

Actually I spoke to a woman in line at Starbucks earlier in the month and she said that her five year old daughter said that it was the month of Halloween. She thought it was cute that her daughter said such a thing but  I am pretty sure she thought I was a weirdo for thinking the same thing! Oh well! October rocks!

Now because of this special month I have done all sorts of wonderful things like paint my nails to certain Halloween themes as well as making some Halloween themed suppers!

Spider Nail Art

Tonight was one of those nights!

I made jack-o-lanterns out of bell peppers!

I’ve actually been meaning to buy two pumpkins. One for the beau to do as its been a very long time since having made a jack-o-lantern and the other for myself as I do them annually. Only hard thing about it is carrying them from the grocery store all the way home! Having a car would have made things that much better. Oh well, guess we will be getting our exercise for the day if we buy some pumpkins!

So I ended up making stuffed peppers which I used to strongly dislike when growing up. I remember mom having made rice outside the pepper for my sister and I. Well now I make them inside the pepper!

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I got the recipe from Ceara’s Kitchen, a website on the well-being of living and eating in a happy life. The direct link to the recipe can be found here.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups (285g) 7 grain rice
  • 3 cups (750ml) low sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 cups (150g) mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup (150g) red onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 ½ (340ml) cups tomato sauce
  • 1 teaspoon herbs de provence
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • 1 can kidney beans (275g) rinsed and drained
  • 1 can corn kernels (115g), rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup (225ml) tomato sauce 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 ½ teaspoon herbes de provence
  • 3 orange bell peppers, deseeded

Instructions:

  1. In a medium pot on high heat, combine rice and broth and cook until rice has absorbed broth and is fully cooked.

  2. In a medium pan, sauté onions and garlic until fragrant. Add mushrooms and sauté until soft. Add all seasoning and mix until combined. Combine rice with vegetables and pour in tomato sauce, beans, and corn. Mix well and set aside.

  3. If you do not have a deep casserole dish or a glass dish wash out your medium pot for the rice and prepare for your bell peppers.

  4. Preheat oven to 350ᵒF or 180ᵒC.

  5. In the casserole dish, pour tomato sauce and combine with garlic powder, cayenne powder, and herbes de provence. Mix well. Grab your bell peppers and cut out little jack-o-lantern faces with a small paring knife

  6. Fill each of the peppers with the rice dish and place in the tomato sauce. Cover casserole dish with tin foil and place in oven to cook for approximately fifty-five minutes.

  7. Once peppers are cooked, remove tin foil and place the pepper lids on top of the stuffed peppers and on broil for five to ten minutes.

  8. Enjoy once browned.

Best of all I had so much leftover rice that I decided to make a burrito! Perfect for breakfast!

Breakfast Burrito

I love being able to utilize the right leftovers for another type of meal!

When I make burritos (or just breakfast wraps) I make a scrambled egg but before scrambling it in the pan, I just let it cook on a the flat surface until it’s a pancake. I then place that flat scrambled egg-like pancake onto a wrap, add some sliced marble cheese (as I can’t just have plain cheddar), and top that with the leftover rice.

Breakfast Burrito Before WrappingBreakfast burrito after

I do the same tortilla wrap and egg thing with normal breakfast wraps, though I add some sort of leafy green, feta cheese, and sriracha sauce. Also all my scrambled egg pancakes are made without milk and with za’atar. Za’atar is an Arabic spice that I was introduced to by my older sister. She married a Leb and due to his family knows so much about Lebanese and Arabic cuisine! Not that I mind! Love it.

My using of the rice is like Bubble and Squeak but better! Well maybe not as I do not refry everything together, but I do reuse it one way or another!

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See! Even this guy agrees! Look at his cute smile!

If any of you give this puppy a go, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Happy eating!

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Super Filling Lentil and Wild Rice bowl

Good evening y’all!

Remember how in my last post how I complained about the cold weather? Well would you believe that its shorts and t-shirt weather again? It went from six degrees on Sunday to what should be twenty-seven degrees come the end of the week!

How crazy is that?

Well I sure don’t mind! Though I will hopefully be getting a pair of boots in the mail from JustFab soon. Even if the weather isn’t as cold as it was the other day, it will be colder soon enough and I can rock my taupe wide-calved heeled boots!

Anyway I had the BEST supper tonight! You know when you have just one plate/bowl and you are instantly full? Well the meal for the evening was one of those meals.

I have a love/hate relationship for those types of meals though. Because they are generally so good that you just want more however your body is so full that you can’t have any! How heart breaking is that? My poor stomach is sobbing. And no it isn’t just gas! It wants to eat more!

I got the recipe from A Family Feast, this is the first time I’ve ever visited this place, but with this recipe I will definitely be coming back for more fabulous recipes! The direct link to this recipe can be found here.

Wild Rice and Lentils with Feta

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (200g) wild rice
  • 2 cups (500ml) vegetable stock
  • 1 cup (400g) orange lentils
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 cups (1000ml) water
  • 4 green onions, both green and whites, sliced
  • 1 medium sized red bell pepper (90g) (I used yellow though), diced
  • 1 medium sized zucchini (115g), cubed
  • ½ cup (50g) feta, crumbled
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 Tablespoons white vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon thyme
  • ¼ teaspoon lemon pepper seasoning
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions:

  1. In a medium sauce pan cook wild rice in vegetable stock (or water) as directed on the package.

  2. In a large sauce pan combine lentils, bay leaves, and water and cook until lentils are soft.

  3. Once both rice and lentils are cooked, drain and combine in a large bowl.

  4. Chop green onions, bell pepper, and zucchini and add to the rice and lentil bowl.

  5. Add feta, olive oil, white vinegar, thyme, lemon pepper, and salt and pepper to taste.

  6. Mix well and serve!

Love this! It was the perfect amount of heaven.

I absolutely loved this meal! Oh my god! I will be enjoying this for lunch tomorrow too! Can’t wait! Because I’m already too full to have anymore right now.

Anyway, do any of you hate cross contamination when it comes to chopping boards? Because I majored in international hotel and business management, I know all about chopping boards and like things neat and tidy in my kitchen. Especially when it comes to the chopping boards.

Chopping Boards

I finally got the permanent markers I needed to write on the chopping boards. I’ve been needing those markers for a good long while and only JUST got them. I’m very happy now!

So now I feel organized, content, and my stomach is happy.

I hope you all think about making this dish too and enjoy it as much as I did!

Happy eating

Craving for a Cajun Favourite

It is bloody cold.

I mean it.

Each person feels the cold differently, we are all effected by the lower temperatures in different ways. For me my nose feels it. It gets so incredibly cold and even starts to hurt. I never noticed the sharp pain until today when I noticed the one side of my septum aching. If I still had it pierced I would understand but now? Weird.

Well today was very cold. Winter is officially here. I thought I could rock a thin sweater when I went out with my friend but I was very wrong. I should have worn a wool sweater or something. It is ridiculous how cold I was today!

Cold weather (Don't judge, I know most of you will say this isn't cold)
Cold weather (Don’t judge, I know most of you will say this isn’t cold)

Anyway, it is these types of days that we should enjoy something hot to warm our insides. Heat helps whether it is spice or temperature doesn’t really matter, just as long as it warms you up!

So today I wanted to make a gumbo. Now I had no idea it was going to be such a chilly day, but I am still very happy to have made a gumbo.

Gumbo comes from Louisiana, though it was first made in the mid 1700’s when the African slaves would cook a French soup combined with fish stew. Talk about an ancient food!

When I first was introduced to gumbo I was fifteen and we were invited to a get-together with a couple of daddy’s colleagues. I’m pretty sure the lad who cooked up the gumbo wasn’t even Cajun himself. BUT the meal was spectacular!

It seems that everyone in the oil industry is an expert in something that isn’t originally from their place of origin or passport country. For example dad has a colleague who is Scottish but has a Spanish accent and is far more Venezuelan than he is Scottish. Dad also knows a lad who is Dutch and also is far more Venezuelan than Dutch. So if the non-Cajun whipped up a fantastic gumbo it is pretty normal. At least to us.

Well, I got the recipe from The Housewife in Training Files – LOVE that name! Makes me think of the X-Files but girly, gosh what a nerd I am. The direct link to the recipe can be found here though. I followed mostly everything perfectly except I used fresh okra.

Shrimp and Chicken Gumbo
Shrimp and Chicken Gumbo

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 2 (130g) green bell peppers, chopped
  • ½ cup (115g) celery, chopped
  • ½ cup (75g) yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 (large) clove garlic, minced
  • 1 cup (100g) okra, chopped
  • 1 can (410g) diced tomatoes
  • ½ Tablespoon dried basil
  • ½ Tablespoon dried oregano
  • ½ Tablespoon dried thyme
  • ½ Tablespoon cumin
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • ½ teaspoon paprika powder
  • Small pinch of dried red pepper flakes
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
  • 3 cups (750ml) chicken broth
  • 2 breasts (566g) of chicken, diced
  • ¾ cup (400g) frozen shrimp, slightly thawed with tails removed
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch, mixed with 1/8 a cup cold water – this makes a slurry

What is a slurry? Well it is a semi-liquid mixture such as cement, manure, or cornstarch and water!

Instructions:

  1. In a large pot heat olive oil at a medium heat and mix in flour to make a roux. Once like a paste and fragrant, turn heat to low and mix in vegetables and stir well until vegetables soften. Add diced tomatoes and herbs and spices and cook for an additional five minutes.

  2. While gumbo is cooking, cook your side dish. This usually is rice, however you can also use quinoa as I’ve done.

  3. Add chicken broth, diced chicken, and frozen shrimp. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat to a simmer. Cook for ten minutes or until chicken is cooked. Add slurry and bring to a boil until gumbo has thickened. Serve with your choice of starch.

  4. Enjoy!

So for some weird reason my gumbo was more of a soup consistency than a stew. Kinda annoying if you ask me. But it tasted good. AND it warmed us all up. Though I am back to my cold state. If you guys could feel my nose you would all shiver too! It is like ICE!

Shrimp and Chicken Gumbo

To try and thicken the consistency we mixed our multicolored quinoa into it. That definitely did the trick.

The biggest issue I had making this was definitely my inability to open up the tin can! Do you ever have the issue where you cannot open a can? I definitely did. Dad actually had to run out to the grocery store and buy TWO more can openers because we were both unable to open my can of diced tomatoes. Ridiculous right?

Assortment of Can Openers
Assortment of Can Openers

So now we have an army can opener – does anyone know how to use it? We have a normal one that cuts around the inside of the circumference of the inside of the lid, and there is the can opener that cuts the entire top of the lip off. The first two from the right are the new ones. That last left hand one is the one I couldn’t work. I feel like an idiot.

But I guess we all have our failures in the kitchen. For some people it is forgetting to put flour in brownies, for others it is sprinkling your breakfast with cumin rather than cinnamon (my friends son does this), and then there is me who is unable to open the can with the can opener.

Cold Trees
Cold Trees

Back to the cold, yesterday I learnt that for the winter the gardeners tend to warm the trees up by wrapping them with the long grass. I guess it really does get cold. This 15ᵒC weather is really cold. Everyone says it. So I guess the trees feel it too. These trees are from the western Cape (closer to Capetown) where it is much warmer, so that is when they wrap ’em in long grass. Interesting right?

Alright, I’m done blabbering. I hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as we have!

Happy eating!

Quick & Easy Arugula & Penne Pesto Salad

I watch far too many cooking shows. I’ve always watched them though.

I remember way back when I would have sick days as a child, I’d watch cooking shows. And I’d be super relaxed watching them. However at this time in my life was a time where I didn’t even know how to turn on the oven to make corndogs. Keep in mind that I only really learnt how to cook at the age of seventeen.

Shocking right? Well growing up in third world countries and having a housekeeper or your mom always cook for you leaves you uneducated in the kitchen. At least I sure was!

Well in this day of age when I watch cooking programs I also learn from them.

For this evenings meal I decided to apply some of my new found cooking techniques to the meal.

This evening I made a simple salad with roasted pepper in it. Well it’s the pepper that I roasted just like they do on cooking programs!

Roasting a Bell Pepper
Roasting a Bell Pepper

I got the recipe from Gimme Some Oven, the original recipe can be found here. And when I say original it is because I did tweak this recipe some.

Arugula and Penne Pesto Salad
Arugula and Penne Pesto Salad

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups (115g) whole wheat penne
  • 2 bell peppers
  • ½ cup (74g) cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup (150g) fresh mozzarella
  • ¼ cup (62g) coriander pesto
  • 2 cups (80g) arugula/spinach mix salad

Instructions:

  1. Cook penne as directed on packaging.

  2. Meanwhile turn heat on a small burner to low and place bell peppers (one at a time) on the burner. Allow to brown (it may bring up a burnt smell so keep an eye on the pepper), rotate often until brown enough for your likings.

  3. Chop roasted bell peppers and place in large bowl.

  4. Combine roasted peppers with arugula/spinach mix, mozzarella, and tomatoes.

  5. Once penne has cooked, drain and rinse in cold water for twenty minutes until cool.

  6. Add cooled penne with vegetables and mix with coriander pesto.

  7. Enjoy!

As you can tell, I roasted my pepper on the oven burner! I actually know how to do a few things on the burner as my friends once taught me how to cook the “ghetto” way.

This recipe was FANTASTIC, super easy and just great. You may need some salt, but otherwise it was great!

But have any of you heard of coriander pesto? It is divine! You can add this to wraps, salads, sandwiches, the works. It is so tasty!

Coriander Pesto

You can use any pesto for this salad though. Actually are there other types of pesto? Besides the original one and this coriander one? Are you curious about what sort of pesto’s there are? If so I just googled it, here is a link including eleven different types of pesto’s!

I hope you all enjoy this recipe as much as my mom and I did! It is a great easy and healthy recipe for those nights when you need a quick meal!

Happy eating!

South African Creole Fusion from a Favoured Cookbook!

I miss the days where we would get fabulous recipes from cook books. Don’t get me wrong though, I love finding recipes online too. It is just that those recipes you tend to find in cook books are usually delightful and wholesome. If they were published in a book, they must be the best of the best! Online you have to dig through millions of recipes before you find one which truly is amazing.

All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human
All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human

Well as of late one of my friends has been spoiling me with South African treats of all sorts. A few weeks ago I tried a koeksister which is a little cookie type thing. Last week I got to try a melktert, this being the Afrikaans way of spelling out “milk pie”, however in Dutch it would be spelled as “melktaart”. This took me forever to realize that a tart or pie in Dutch is not the same as it is in Afrikaans. Yet they are pronounced the same.

Afrikaans eh? They really changed Dutch words to make it more their own.

Anyway, my lovely lovely friend who has been introducing me to South African treats also loaned me one of her mama’s cookbooks which was written by a South African woman. Ever heard of Annette Human? No? Well she is a well-known food writer in South Africa! And from reading this cookbook I see why!

For the recipe I made for this evening, this is the blurb she wrote before writing out the recipe:

“The Creole descendants of European colonists in Latin America have developed a distinctive and very flavourful style of cooking. Tomatoes, green peppers, and rice are characteristic ingredients in their recipes – as in this dish. The chicken may be replaced with portions of boerewors.”

For those of you who don’t know boerewors is the Afrikaans spelling of “farmer’s sausage”.  As I do not eat red meat, this is not for me, but my family and friends love it as well as other South African meat treats such as droëwors (droge worst) or in English “dry sausage” and biltong. Biltong is the South African version of beef jerky when simply described to foreigners.

Creole Chicken Casserole Pre-Cooking

So according to that blurb above, the dish I made was a Creole Chicken Casserole. The cookbook I got it from is called the All-Colour Cookbook and it is by Annette Human. If you are interested in the recipe, read below:

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (200g) white basmati
  • 1 kg chicken portions (I used 3 thighs and 4 breasts)
  • Salt and pepper
  • ½ cup (125ml) sunflower oil
  • 2 smallish green peppers
  • 1 medium red onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 1 can (400g) diced tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

Instructions:

  1. Cook rice as directed on packaging. Rinse in a colander under cold running water and drain. Set aside.

  2. Season chicken portions with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan. Quickly fry a couple of chicken portions at a time in oil until golden brown on both sides. Place chicken in shallow ovenproof dish with a volume of 10 cups (2.5L). Sprinkle rice on top.

  3. Halve and seed the green peppers and cut into strips. Peel the onion and chop roughly. Peel and crush garlic. Place in pot in which the chicken was fried. (Leave just enough oil in pot to braise the vegetables.) Add tomatoes with juices, curry powder, and dried thyme. Cover with lid and braise the vegetables for 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

  4. Spoon the vegetables over the rice layer. Pour liquid in after. Cover the container and cook the dish for about 40 minutes at 200ᵒC (390ᵒF) until chicken is tender. Serve with young peas and a beetroot salad.

Serves 6

Creole Chicken Casserole from the All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human
Creole Chicken Casserole from the All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human

I think my favourite part about this cookbook is that Annette Human wrote the measurements out in both metric and imperial! I only know and understand imperial measurements in the kitchen which makes it hard for me to follow recipes which need a scale to measure out the grams for every ingredient when following a British recipe. But thankfully this woman thought it out and wrote every ingredient in both grams and cups! What a lifesaver!

Although I did tweak the recipe some (I added an additional pepper as mine were on the small side) I also added more seasoning. And of course as a lover of garlic, I added two more cloves. I’ll include a photo of the original recipe so you can see it without my tweaks.

Creole Chicken Casserole from All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human
Creole Chicken Casserole from All-Colour Cookbook by Annette Human

This was a pretty good recipe. A little bland for me (thank goodness I added more seasoning!) but I quite enjoyed it!

I know I will try to do some more South African recipes from this book before I give it back!

I hope you all enjoy this recipe!

Happy eating!

Protein Packed Summer-Ready Salad

Everybody likes a little protein. Well actually, everybody needs protein to survive.

The average human needs 10-35% of their daily calories to come from protein. In total when looking at grams per day, a woman needs 46 grams of her daily food intake to be protein. That means each meal you consume should have almost twelve grams of protein in it. That is if you have four meals per day.

I know for myself I get a minimal amount of protein daily. When one does not eat as much meat as your average North American, it means you do not get all too much protein. Same can be said of iron.

Luckily for this evening’s meal I’ve had more than enough to make me big and strong! I sure won’t be revealing my Popeye guns of steel anytime soon, but my body will be somewhat happy with me.

So what’s a good pre-summer meal that is jam packed with protein?

A delicious salad with chickpeas and broccoli of course!

Creamy Broccoli Salad with Feta

Now I first had this salad in the heart of summer last year. It was a lovely day to enjoy a cool salad and a glass of chilled wine with the sun just dipping behind the house. It was also my twenty-first birthday.

(That’s how I remember the last time having eaten it, it has nothing to do with having a freaky memory like Carrie Wells from Unforgettable)

The salad was a hit at my birthday,  so much so that my picky sister even liked it! I realized from that evening that she likes chickpeas a lot, so now I know that it is safe to make meals with chickpeas for her.

The recipe is super simple and ends up with a fantastic salad which I found here.

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese
  • 1/4 cup plain Greek  yoghurt
  • 3 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 broccoli head, trimmed and finely chopped (about 3 cups)
  • 1 400g can chickpeas, rinsed
  • 1/2 cup chopped red bell pepper

Instructions:

  1. In a medium size bowl whisk together feta, yoghurt, lemon juice, garlic, and ground pepper. Set aside.

  2. Chop broccoli until crowns are in small pieces and add to feta mixture.

  3. Add chickpeas and bell peppers and mix until all is coated in creamy feta mixture. 

  4. Eat alone or serve as a side dish.

Broccoi Salad with Creamy Feta Dressing

I had my salad with these star shaped pumpkin nuggets.

I’ll have enough left over that I can enjoy the salad on its own tomorrow as a lunch. Deeeelicious!

This salad is so good that I wanted to go for seconds, but I was just so full that I couldn’t actually go through with eating more.

It really is filling and gives you the protein you need.

You really must try this salad! And if you are interested in knowing more about amounts of protein needed on a daily basis here is where I got my information.

Eet smakelijk!

Vegetable Enchiladas for a Colorful Evening

So… there was a fiesta in my oven last night. No seriously, it seemed that I was at a proper Mexican party where a piñata let out enough color to celebrate. It was delightful. Most of all delicious too.

Last night’s meal was a mix of healthy vegetables and salsa to create a perfect enchilada. What a great thing to be eating on a Tuesday which kick starts the warmth to come during the week. It has been quite cold as of late, but yesterday was pretty warm and the remainder of the week will increase in temperature as well. So enchiladas definitely are making week look good.

Fiesta in Oven

Okay, so that doesn’t quite look like a fiesta or a piñata, but when it came out it sure looked impressive.

Colorful

Look at all those beautiful colors! Layers of colors at that. Perfection.

The recipe can be found here:

Ingredients

  • 1 poblano chile, cut into matchsticks
  • 2 red bell peppers, cut into matchsticks
  • 1/2 head of cauliflower (or one small cauliflower head), cut into 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 small sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 medium onion, halved and slivered
  • 1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
  • 3 Tablespoons heat-safe olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • salt and black pepper
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 cups homemade or store bought salsa/pico de gallo
  • 2 ounces baby spinach leaves (about 2 big handfuls)
  • 5 corn tortillas, teared into appropriate slices as needed
  • 2 cups shredded cheese (sharp cheese works best)
  • sour cream and thinly sliced scallions for garnish, if desired

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 218ᵒC (425ᵒF). Lightly oil a large shallow roasting pan or rimmed cookie sheet.
  2. Place poblanos, red bell peppers, cauliflower, sweet potato, onion, and corn kernels onto cookie sheet. Drizzle oil and sprinkle the cumin and minced garlic over top. Add a generous pinch or two of salt and black pepper, then use your hands to mix everything together. After everything is coated well, spread the vegetables evenly in the pan. Roast for 20-30 minutes until vegetables are tender and begin to brown in spots. Stir or shake the pan every 10 minutes for even roasting. Remove pan from oven and reduce oven temperature to 175ᵒC (350ᵒF).
  3. Prepare an 8x8x2 or 9x9x2-inch square baking pan with nonstick spray. In a small bowl, stir the cilantro into the salsa. Spread 1/4 cup of salsa into the bottom of the baking pan. Add a layer of tortilla pieces, to completely cover the salsa. Top with 1/3 of the vegetables, a handful of spinach, and 1/3 of the cheese. Make a second layer of tortilla, salsa, vegetables, spinach, and cheese. Top with with a layer of tortillas, salsa, vegetables, and cheese. Cover with aluminum foil.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake another 10 minutes, until cheese is melted and everything is heated through.
  5. Let it sit for 5 minutes and cut into squares. Serve with sour cream and a sprinkle of sliced scallions.

Beautiful LayersCheck out those fantastic layers. Does it actually even look like layers to y’all?

Well when it came to plating the meal I opted out from using sour cream and chives. It really was unnecessary for both the reason of adding more fat to the dish as well as the taste is fantastic without it!

You really should try this. It doesn’t plate all too attractively, but it tastes great.

Stacked Vegetable Enchiladas

Plus to make things even better, I took a little bit back to my apartment and decided to make an omelette with the enchilada mixture inside. Seriously that was perfection. I before eight in the morning and I am still full at four.  Usually I would be peckish but I am satisfied. Well maybe not now after writing an entry on food.

So this is definitely a five star meal. If I could have made it gluten free I would have too. But where does one find gluten free tortillas in the country of the Netherlands? If anyone can help me on that one please do!

I really hope you all try this meal out. It is great.

Buen provecho!

Healthy Meal with Exploration of Zuid-Holland

It feels as though I have been on a cooking vacation/hiatus. It literally feels like forever since I’ve been in a kitchen. Except I cannot live without being in the kitchen. But today was definitely the first meal in a week? I think it has been a week!

Last weekend an old friend came by. I have not seen her for ten years so this was like a reunion type of thing. We spent Friday night just catching up on the couch, just talking until sleep came over us. Then Saturday morning we hopped on a tram to Madurodam, which is like a miniaturized version of the Netherlands. Once we were done from there I took her to Scheveningen, this being the most popular beach in the country. Before we left from the beach we had a little bite to eat at a Japanese restaurant and then we popped back to my apartment to get our belongings and headed to my mom’s house. We had a quiet night eating dinner with my family and watching the Voice UK and then hit the sack. The following morning we headed to the city of Leiden and explored the downtown area.

Postcard from Madurodam

But tonight now that I am back in the kitchen, I made falafels with homemade hummus and carrots. I’ve been craving chimichurri sauce and thought this would go great with my new obsession for falafels. It truly did. Perfectly delicious!

I made both a homemade hummus and chimichurri sauce while just fried store bought falafels and heated some pita bread.

Falafels with Carrots and Hummus

Classic Hummus:

Ingredients:

  • ½ Cup Chickpeas, drained
  • 2 Tablespoons Tahini
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 shallots, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix well. If hummus is not smooth enough for your liking add more lemon juice and/or olive oil.

  2. Scoop hummus into small bowl and refrigerate.

Chimichurri Sauce (recipe found here):

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • 2 teasooons lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and mix well. If sauce is not liquid enough, add more olive oil or lemon juice and mix until smooth.

Assembling Your Falafel:

  1. Choose your vegetables and chop in the appropriate size

  2. Heat pita breads in oven until warm

  3. Fry falafels until brown and warm

  4. Once pitas are warm, cut half of the pita along the rim and coat sides of pita with hummus

  5. Cut the falafel balls in half and place in the pita. Top with greens of choice (I used arugula lettuce, slices of red pepper, and whole chickpeas)

  6. Top with chimichurri sauce and additional hummus if you want

  7. Now enjoy your meal!

Falafel with Carrots and HummusThis was so delicious and really filling. I hope you make it as well and enjoy it as I have!

As they say in Greek: καλή όρεξη! (Enjoy your meal)

P.S. Here are some more photos of our travels over the weekend to Madurodam and Leiden:

Giant Seagull Taking Over the World (or at least Madurodam)
Giant Seagull Taking Over the World (or at least Madurodam)

For those that know me, I love dodge rams... so finding one in Madurodam was great!
For those that know me, I love dodge rams… so finding one in Madurodam was great!

Together in Madurodam

Gate Towards Citadel of Leiden

The City Hall of Leiden
The City Hall of Leiden
View of Church of Leiden from the Citadel
View of Church of Leiden from the Citadel