Leftover Quinoa = Another great meal!

So after making Red Quinoa on Monday I was not quite sure what to do with the leftovers. I am one who does not mind the convenience of having food left over. It simplifies my meal choices. My husband however is not the leftover type. What to do with the leftover Quinoa? Disguise it!

I came across and doctored this great recipe to accommodate our packed kitchen (as we are moving tomorrow) and Passover observance. We were all impressed with the outcome and will certainly be making these again.

Quinoa Patties

– 2 1/2 cups cooked quinoa, at room temperature
– 4 large eggs, beaten or equivalent egg whites
– 1/2 teaspoon fine-grain sea salt
– 1/3 cup finely chopped fresh chives (or shallots)
– 1 yellow or white onion, finely chopped
– 1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Gruyère cheese
– 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
– 1 cup whole grain bread crumbs, plus more if needed
(can substitute matzoh meal or crackers – whole wheat preferred)
– Water, if needed
– 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
– sliced mushrooms optional

1. Combine the quinoa, eggs, and salt in a medium bowl.
2. Stir in the chives, onion, cheese, and garlic.
3. Add the bread crumbs, stir, and let sit for a few minutes so the crumbs can absorb some of the moisture. I kept the mixture on the moist side because it makes for a not-overly-dry patty, but you can add more bread crumbs, a bit at a time, to firm up the mixture, if needed.
4. Heat the oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-low heat. Add patties with some room between each, cover, and cook for 7 to 10 minutes, until the bottoms are deeply browned.

My Latest Obsession…

Truffle Honey.

Truffle anything really makes something good, something AMAZING! My latest discovery – Truffle Honey (thank you Kim and Jeff). Imported from Italy and locally found at DiBruno’s in Philadelphia you must get your hands on some. Words really cannot describe how fabulous this honey is. Drizzled on cheese and crackers was how I first encountered it. Really – the options are endless. The other night my husband put it on fresh sweet potato sticks (fries) I had baking in the oven. What are your favorite truffle recipes?

Today’s recipe – Branzino

I love that summer is right around the corner! Time to switch seasons of veggies and enjoy lighter fare. Here is a great dish I love to prepare this time of year. Branzino is light, a favorite and crowd pleaser.

Branzino and Roasted Baby Vegetables

Tarragon-chive oil:
1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
9 tablespoons olive oil (not extra-virgin), divided
Coarse kosher salt

For tarragon-chive oil:
Puree herbs and 4 tablespoons oil in blender until smooth. Transfer to small bowl; whisk in remaining 5 tablespoons oil. Season herb oil to taste with coarse salt and pepper.

Branzino:
6 branzino fillets with skin (each about 5 ounces)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Lemon

Veggies
20 baby carrots, peeled, tops trimmed
8 ounces baby squash, halved
8 baby golden beets, peeled, halved
3 medium parsnips, quartered lengthwise, cut into 3-inch pieces
8 ounces baby zucchini, trimmed
3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
(can add japanese eggplant too)

Preheat oven to 400°F.
-Combine all vegetables except zucchini in large bowl – toss with 3 tablespoons oil
-Spread out vegetables on large rimmed baking sheet; Sprinkle vegetables with salt and pepper
-Roast vegetables 15 minutes.
-Add Zucchini
-Cook for about 15 minutes more or until tender

Branzino
Pat fillets dry. Sprinkle on both sides with lemon, salt and pepper. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add 3 fillets, skin side down. Sauté until brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer fillets, skin side down, to baking sheet. Repeat with remaining fillets. Drizzle each with 1/2 tablespoon herb oil.

Roast fillets until just opaque in center, about 10 minutes. Transfer fillets to platter. Surround with vegetables. Drizzle some herb oil over vegetables.

Milk – It does a body good

In an effort to avoid confusion and shed some more light on the milk debate. I recently posted on my new favorite soy milk. I wanted to make sure I did not persuade anyone to milk alternatives when traditional milk is a better option. Milk is terrific for children. It becomes less necessary as we age. So many people these days have milk or dairy issues and it is wonderful to know there are other great options out there.

Your best bet when buying milk is to buy Organic. Organic milk is defined by the USDA as milk from cows that have been exclusively fed organic feed, have not been treated with synthetic hormones, and have adequate land to roam. If you want organic milk, you may be much more likely to get the real thing at the farmer’s market. Better yet, a great outing with the family is a field trip to your local farm.

Drink it raw, if you can. Raw organic milk from grass-fed cows is the best tasting and by far the healthiest option for most people, but it may not always be available or safe. The key to getting safe raw milk is that it must come from a trusted source: cows must be grass-fed and the collection process must be clean. To find a raw milk supplier near you, visit http://www.realmilk.com.

Consider goat milk. There are arguments that goat’s milk is easier to digest and that it causes fewer allergies. Additionally, some studies claim increased levels of essential fatty acids, antioxidants and vitamins, as well as better bioavailability of iron.

Remember that soy milk is not milk. Soy, almond and cashew milks can be healthy, delicious beverages. They contain lots of vitamins and health benefits. Do your research and listen to your body as to what option in best for you!

Are 2 really 6 x harder?

As I count down the weeks to birth of our second son I hear so many different things and have so many questions about the future.

If I exercise up until the end like I did with Skyler will everything go as smoothly?

Can I make all the changes I want to Skyler’s schedule before the new baby arrives?

Will it be easier to learn from my mistakes and get the baby on a more rigid schedule?

Are two children really six times harder?

I feel like there is so much to do before the arrival of #2 – everyone is telling me to rest. I want to keep active and do as much as possible because who knows what I’ll be able to get done when the new baby arrives. I am certainly listening to my body. Last night it said to go to bed early. I did. I would love to get together with friends and go out a bit now that the weather is getting nice. I realize the evenings are most difficult so I try getting out as much as possible during the day. We will see. I read some interesting articles last night about the secrets successful mom’s use. I thought I would share some of them (although some seemed rather ridiculous):

-Make weekly menus – and shopping lists so you have everything you need in one shot!
-Used shared online calendar – we do this and it is so helpful. Cozi is a great resource although outlook works too!
-If you work, do errands on your lunch hour
-Put your kids to bed earlier – they often even sleep later!
-Make lists! This way you are always feeling productive and never forgetting what needs to be done. It always feels good crossing things off too!
-Wake up before the kids – it is some productive time and also great to get a shower in
-Teach your kids to help where they can
-Speed things up with music – high energy music gets the kids moving!

And the best one yet mentions kids like things simple: food, spending time together and just having a good time can be as simple as laughing. Sometimes we just need to let go of trying to make everything perfect and just do the best we can:)

So my question to you? Are 2 really 6 X harder? what are your secrets to making things work?