Nov 302011
 


Is everything as crazy for you as it is for me?  The holidays, extra responsibilities at work, taking care of a 3 year old and keeping in touch with friends and family all contributes to the craziness.  But the other day, I was lying in bed, looking up at the ceiling, thinking WOW, I have it good.  Instead of getting overwhelmed I stopped and took a moment to be thankful for what I have….. 
….A crazy/awesome family, a supportive and loving hubby, a healthy baby girl (after many trials and tribulations), a way to get around, a roof over my head, a job to go to every day, both legs/eyes/arms and health, just to name a few.
It is so easy to get bogged down with all I have to do around the holidays and all the details that I have decided to make it my intention to STOP and focus on the present moment.  Just this morning I was in the bathroom getting ready for work and noticed the light shining through this beautiful glass vase made with all the colors of the sea; blues and greens, and realized that is what it’s like to be in the present moment.  I thought, how often do I even look at this vase?  I rush through the morning just trying to get out of the house, rush to drop my daughter off, rush to work as I’m usually running late, and rush home to get my baby girl, rush to make dinner, rush to the grocery….see a pattern?  I don’t think I’ll make it through this season unless I stop and take the time to appreciate where I am at that moment and all that I have.  We really do have a decision to be happy or unhappy.  I want to wake up each morning and make the decision to be happy.  Easier said than done some mornings, I know, but I will make it a habit and hopefully it will stick.
This dish was created as I was still had Thanksgiving in my thoughts.  I’m a big fan of cranberries so I had bought two fresh bags and decided to cook them up.  It’s SUPER easy and super tart.  If you like sweeter cranberry sauces simply add enough to suit your taste.  Paired with the sautéed organic spinach from my farm, scented with the hint of thyme and sage make dish somehow light but comforting at the same time.
As an FYI the nutrition info will be a bit off because there will be a LOT of cranberry sauce left over.  To create the nutrition info I had to list all the ingredients though so the calories will be a bit lower.

Cranberry Bowl with Sauteed Spinach, Black Eyed Peas and Couscous
***If you want sweeter cranberries add 1/4 cup brown sugar or agave.
Serves 4



Ingredients


1 bag fresh cranberries
1 tangerine, peeled and chopped
1 cup apple juice
1 can black eyed peas
1 bunch fresh spinach
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 head roasted garlic or 2 fresh cloves, minced
1/8 tsp thyme
1/8 tsp sage
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
2 servings couscous, cooked to package directions


Directions


1. Wash and pick through cranberries, add to a medium pot with tangerine and apple juice; bring to a simmer and cook for about 30 minutes.


2. Heat 1 Tbsp oil over medium high heat; add onions; sauté 5 to 7 minutes; add garlic and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes; add spinach, thyme, sage, salt and pepper and stir until wilted, about 3 minutes.


3. Serve each of four bowls with 1/4 cup couscous, 1/4 cup cranberry mixture, 1/4 spinach mixture and a large heaping spoonful of black eyed peas.

Nutrition Facts
4 Servings
Amount Per Serving


Calories 247.8
Total Fat 4.6 g
Saturated Fat 0.5 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0.5 g
Monounsaturated Fat 2.5 g
Cholesterol 0.0 mg
Sodium 319.5 mg
Potassium 641.0 mg
Total Carbohydrate 47.5 g
Dietary Fiber 11.5 g
Sugars 6.4 g
Protein 7.8 g


Vitamin A 179.7 %
Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
Vitamin B-6 14.2 %
Vitamin C 71.5 %
Vitamin D 0.0 %
Vitamin E 10.8 %
Calcium 23.4 %
Copper 9.7 %
Folate 44.7 %
Iron 21.7 %
Magnesium 19.9 %
Manganese 56.4 %
Niacin 5.8 %
Pantothenic Acid 4.9 %
Phosphorus 7.1 %
Riboflavin 11.6 %
Selenium 17.4 %
Thiamin 8.8 %
Zinc 4.9 %




*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Oct 232011
 
My 3-year old and I made up a song about our trip to the farm last weekend since my description of the trip was turning out REALLY boring.  So here goes.
  You have heard the story of Old McDonald, right?  This is the story of Old McFrancisco and his Black Eyed Peas.  (Cows, dogs, chickens and seedlings too.)

Old McFrancisco had a farm, it’s called KYV

And on this farm there was a cow. He was named Sir-Loin.

With a moo moo here, and a moo moo there.

Here a moo, there a moo, everywhere a moo moo.

Old Mc Francisco had a farm.  Ei ei oh. 





And on this farm there was a dog. He was named Whis-key.

With a ruff ruff here, and a ruff ruff there.

Here a ruff, there a ruff, everywhere a ruff ruff.

Old McFrancisco had a farm. Whiskey loves Sir-Loin. 





 And on this farm there were chick-ens. Ei ei oh.

With a cluck cluck here, and a cluck cluck there.

Here a feather, there a feather, everywhere a fea-ther.

Old McFrancisco had a farm. We should make ear-rings.


And on this farm there were seedlings. ei ei oh.

With a yum yum here, and a yum yum there.

Here a yum, there a yum, everywhere a yum yum.

Old McFrancisco had a farm. We can’t wait to eat.



And on this farm he had some peas ei ei oh.

With a black eye here and a black eye there.

Here a pea, there a pea, everywhere a pea-pea (hehehe).

Old McFrancisco had a farm.  It’s called KYV.
The end.
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We left the farm with our bag of scary Halloween worms aka. black eyed peas (see below) and sat down to shell them.  Who knew my daughter would have so much fun she would fight me pea for pea.

And what did we do with them? Since I didn’t have a lot of experience with fresh black eyed peas I had to wing it.  We tried them raw, cooked, and in a wrap.
Here’s a salad I made with them raw.  Isn’t it pretty?  I hope this inspires you to both get creative and keep it simple.

roasted beets
red onion
lettuce
raw black eyed peas
drizzle of my favorite vinaigrette
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We also made a pickled black eye pea recipe from Epicurious.  Simple and delicious.
Pickled Black Eyed Peas
Ingredients
1 pound dried black-eyed peas
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons salt
2 red bell peppers
1 small onion
2 large garlic cloves
6 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
2/3 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh flat-leafed parsley leaves
Directions
Click here for the directions as I didn’t change much other than to use less oil and cook the fresh black eyed peas as directed until tender to my taste.

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Finally I made a lettuce wrap recipe.
Lettuce Wraps with Pickled Black Eyed Peas and Barley

Ingredients

Romaine lettuce leaves
Cooked barley
Pickled Black Eyed Peas (recipe above)

Directions

1. Layer barley and black eyed peas in the center of each romaine lettuce leaf.  Wrap and enjoy.

What are your favorite ways to use black eyed peas?  We may just try it next time!