Tag Archives: soup

What’s in the Box? Recipe Roundup #8

What's in the Box?

Greetings from Ireland!  Harper and I just touched down this morning and are so grateful to be on the Emerald Isle.  After nearly 24 hours of traveling, we are officially exhausted!  Luckily, I have a rockstar of a toddler who was perfect every step of the way…

ireland trip

It’s going to be a pretty rockin party while we are here.  Harper and I have never been to visit since my mom moved to Ireland 7 years ago so she is pretty excited to be hosting us in her beautiful home.

Speaking of parties…we all know there ain’t no party like a produce party and this produce party don’t stop.  So let’s take a look at last week’s party.  For one there were 15 links…Woo Hoo!  And seriously, I need every single one in my belly immediately.  But I thought it would be fun to highlight some delicious summer dishes that are sure to take your family BBQs to a whole new level.  My favorite link this week comes from Meghan of Clean Eats, Fast Feets.  Are you a strawberry lover?  Than you are going to die over this berry filled post complete with Strawberry Pasta!  Next, what BBQ is complete without some kebobs?  Luckily Lauren from Gourmet Veggie Mama has got you covered.  And finally, I am sure we have all enjoyed a nice juicy grilled piece of steak before but have you ever tried bison?  Melissa from Lettuce Never Squash Our Love has me curious to add this lean meat to my next cookout menu.  Thanks to everyone who linked up!  You continue to make my week extra special with your delicious and nutritious meals :)

Now on to some of my favorite green dishes in honor of my Irish Leprechauns :)

For starters, with all the avocados I have been getting in my CSA this summer, guacamole is the perfect solution.  And my recipe just happens to be the best… The Ultimate Guacamole

The Ultimate Guacamole - In Her Chucks

Next, what’s more green than, well…Green Rice!

Green Rice - In Her Chucks

And of course, what in the world is a green foods recipe roundup without a beautiful green salad…one of my favs by far…Strawberry Salad

Strawberry Salad - In Her Chucks

Even though soup in the middle of summer sounds far from appetizing, this soup is magical, and totally worth a brow full of sweat.  Plus, it’s got amazing health benefits…Watercress Soup

Watercress Soup - In Her Chucks

And finally, a bunch of tasty meatballs, served on a bed of Boy Choy.  Sautéed greens at their finest…Turkey-Basmati Rice Meatballs with Bok Choy

Turkey-Basmati Meatballs with Bok Choy - In Her Chucks

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite green recipes?  Feel free to link up some of the CSA inspired meals that you are the most proud of.  Looking forward to drooling over your dishes :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!

PS:  Don’t forget to tell your readers about the party by linking back to this post and grabbing the official “What’s in the Box?” button at the bottom of my blog.  Thanks!

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Hungry Globetrotter

Hungry GlobetrotterWith all the moving I have done in my lifetime, one would think I like to travel.  But the truth is, I am a homebody.  I wish I had the adventurous spirit to get up and go but it’s hard for me to even pack a suitcase, let alone live out of one.  However, as a lover of food from all over the globe, I realize how much I am missing out by staying close to home (on more than just the cuisine, I am sure…).  Which is exactly why my current subscription box obsession is Hungry Globetrotter.  Whether you are an avid jet setter or prefer to enjoy thrilling escapades from the comfort of your own home, Hungry Globetrotter is your passport to worldly edibles.

Imagine getting the chance to visit an exotic country once a month through a gourmet food box sent straight to your home.  And not only is it packed with unique ingredients, it is also accompanied by recipes that will transport you to a land far away.  Take a quick peek at what Hungry Globetrotter is all about…

For the month of March Hungry Globetrotter sent their subscribers on a trip to Tuscany.  With boxes full of traditional Italian flavors I was in heaven with Mushroom and Herb Farro, Italian Seasoning Salt, Tuscan Peasant Soup and Rosemary Focaccia.

Hungry GlobetrotterBut the adventure didn’t stop there.  Hungry Globetrotter also equipped me with all the recipes I needed for a full Tuscan Sun Dinner, complete with wine pairing suggestions.  And finally, to help me really feel like I was in the heart of Italy, they provided detailed information on the food culture of Tuscany.

Now can you see why I am so wild about Hungry Globetrotter?  It really is everything I ever wanted in a food subscription box.  Not only does it deliver delicious and nutritious items to your door monthly, but it expands your palate by introducing you to new places and cultures you may not have the chance to visit on your own.

I have always said that subscription boxes make great gifts.  And with Mother’s Day around the corner, why not surprise the domestic goddess in your life with an opportunity to both explore and enjoy foods from all over the world.  Plus, with half off a first month’s membership with offer code INHERCHUCKS50HG, how can you resist?

As the primary cook for the family, I love that Hungry Globetrotter has changed the daily question of “What’s for dinner?” into “Where is dinner going to take us today?”

*Full Disclosure: Hungry Globetrotter did provide me with a box free of charge. I was not paid to write this post. With exception of some of the factual information given about the various products, all opinions regarding the products are my own and 100% honest.

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March Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

The Lean Green Bean

If you haven’t already noticed, I LOVE to go crazy with themes.  Whether it is for Lindsay’s Foodie Pen Pal Program, or a birthday party, if there is a need for a theme, I am there 150%.  So after all the fun I had last month with my Valentine’s Day box, I was excited to throw something together for St. Patrick’s Day.  See what I put together for Brie over at A Foodie’s Recipe Box.

This is my fifth month participating in the Foodie Pen Pal Program, and it is fun, fun, fun! If you want to learn more, check out my first Foodie Pen Pal Post.  It will give you all the details you need to know to sign up :)
For the month of March, I received my package from Katie of Baking and Swimming.  She put together a small collection of her favorite things which ended up being a perfect balance between sweet treats and heathy snacks.
FPP March
Most of what Katie packed in the box was new to me (except for the Girl Scout Cookies, of course).  So each and every bite was an adventure.
I was most excited to try the White Chocolate Peanut Butter.  I have seen so many different versions of this stuff around the blogosphere but have never had the pleasure of picking up a jar for myself.  And let me tell you, this stuff is AWESOME!  Pretty much tastes like Nutter Butters, especially when you spread it on graham crackers.  Divine :)  And to wash it down I took a sip of the Sparkling ICE Pomegranate Blueberry flavored water.  So delicious and refreshing!  I am going to have to be on the lookout for this stuff.  All of their flavors sound amazing.
Next, Harper and I dug into the Peanut Butter filled Pretzels and Girl Scout Cookies (though not at the same time).  Both were scrumptious and a big hit with the entire family.
Katie also included a few meals of convenience, which as a mommy of an adorable toddler and a part time music teacher, I extremely appreciate these days.  Since Katie is from Texas and is a self-proclaimed Tex-Mex lover, she sent me a package of her favorite tortilla soup mix.  I am looking forward to jazzing this up with some shredded rotisserie chicken and topping it off with some grated cheese and sour cream….yum!  Katie also sent me her favorite muffin mix for an easy breakfast on the go.  This is going to be a great activity for Harper and I to enjoy together.  All you need to do is add water and bake.  Doesn’t get more simple than that :)
Finally, Katie indulged my S’mores addiction by sending me a delicious and nutritious Pure Protein Bar (which came in very handy the other day when Harper took an unexpected nap in the car on the way to the grocery store.  Hungry mama locked in the car until sleeping baby wakes = potentially cranky mama.  Thank God for snack stashes!).
Thanks Katie for an awesome box! I hope your pen pal was as generous to you as you were to me :)

Interested in becoming a Foodie Pen Pal? CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form and read the terms and conditions. Who knows, I might be your next Foodie PenPal :)

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Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

Beef and Butternut Squash Stew - In Her Chucks

After what seemed like a pretty cold winter for us Californians, the temps are finally starting to rise.  The days are getting longer and spring is just around the corner.  But I can’t say goodbye to winter without sharing a great stew recipe that is sure to warm you up from the inside out.

Ingredients

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 onion, peeled and chopped

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

2 pounds stew beef, cut into 2-inch cubes

1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup Marsala wine

1 pound butternut squash, trimmed and cut into 2-inch cubes

1/4 cup chopped sun-dried tomatoes

3 to 4 cups beef broth

2 tablespoons fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preparation

In a large soup pot heat 3 tablespoons of olive oil over medium heat.  Add the onions, garlic, rosemary, and thyme and sauté until the onions are tender, about 2 minutes.  Toss the beef cubes in salt and pepper and flour.  Turn up the heat to med-high and add the beef to the pot.  Cook until the beef is browned and golden around the edges, about 5 minutes. Add the Marsala wine.  Using a wooden spoon, gently stir up all the brown bits off the bottom of the pan.  Add the butternut squash and sun-dried tomatoes and stir to combine.  Add enough beef broth to just cover the beef and squash.  Bring the stew to a boil over high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer, covered, for 1 hour.  Season the stew with additional salt and pepper to taste.  Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Recipe from Giada De Leurentiis via FoodNetwork.com

The flavors in this stew are incredible.  You have the sweetness of the squash, the rich smokey flavor of the Marsala wine and of course the fresh aromas of the rosemary and thyme.  And like most soups and stews, this dish is even better the next day once the flavors have had the chance to meld together even more.

As excited as I am to start breaking out my shorts and flip-flops in anticipation for beach weather, I am going to miss the hearty and delicious comfort foods of the colder months.  What are some of your favorite recipes to keep you warm during the winter?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

PS:  Congratulations to Katie of Baking and Swimming for winning the 3 Month Subscription to Conscious Box!  Thank you so everyone who entered.  Stay tuned for more awesome giveaways coming your way soon :)

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Guest Post: February Foodie Pen Pal Reveal

The Lean Green Bean

As I mentioned in my original September Foodie Pen Pal Reveal Post, the Foodie Pen Pal Program is open to blog readers as well as bloggers.  This month I was paired with a blog reader named Caitlin House and was more than thrilled to pack up a box of goodies to send for her sixth Foodie Pen Pal experience.  Since Caitlin doesn’t have a blog of her own to share her goodies on (although I LOVE her writing and encourage her to start one), she has offered to write a short guest post about what she received (and she even included a few pics!).

So without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, Caitlin House…

From the moment I received Heather’s email letting me know that she was my Foodie PenPal match for February, I was thrilled.  She started off asking me loads of questions regarding my food and drink preferences.  This level of interest in my favorite things blew me away!  My favorite meal of the day? Brunch.  Do I prefer coffee or tea?  Love them both, will always love coffee more.

When my box arrived on Valentine’s Day, it was amazingly fitting for the love-filled holiday.  Heather put incredible thought and effort into the box she sent me.  It was stock full of delicious goodies and each item had a sweet hand-written note attached.

FebFPP

My favorite part of the box was the accompanying recipes (three in all!). There were recipes for the homemade Dried Cranberry Shortbread Hearts (taste amazing!), Tomato Basil Bisque to match the Hearts Crackers, and Heather’s own Homemade Tomato Sauce to serve with the Valentine Pasta.

Shortbread Hearts 2

Heather’s choices had amazing variety while still having certain items play off one another. The cranberry shortbread was amazing to eat along with a cup of the Red Velvet Coffee. And for a truly relaxing pairing, I loved the Lori’s Ojai Lavender Lemonade and a piece of Strong Dark Chocolate by Chocolove. YUM.  FoodiePenPal Feb Collage

And to cover my brunching addiction, Heather sent me granola that tastes like dessert!  I seriously cannot keep my hands out of the bag of Love Crunch, a sweet granola with dark chocolate, strawberries, and raspberries. In fact, my hand is navigating from keyboard to bag as I type…

Overall, Heather made this month my most memorable FPP, yet!  Her thoughtful box went above and beyond in delivering new-to-me treats, fun recipes I can recreate, and wonderfully sweet and personal touches.  She even sent a “love” cookie cutter, so I can put a little extra love in my next cooking adventure. Thanks so much, Heather!

FebFPP Love

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Tomato Basil Bisque

Tomato Basil Bisque - In Her Chucks

I am a meat eater through and through.  No meal is complete without a big lump of protein on my plate.  So when I went through my Fresh Start Challenge meal plan and saw that there was a vegetarian soup on the menu, I was skeptical.  I mean, I love veggies, and I love soup, but can’t we toss some chicken in there to boost up the heartiness factor?  Well let me just say, this soup is perfect just as it is!  Not only was it incredibly delicious, but it was definitely hearty!  The quinoa and goat cheese help to bulk up the texture and give it enough protein to keep you full and satisfied without weighing you down.

Ingredients

4 large carrots, chopped,

1 medium onion, chopped

2 tsp Tamari

2 tbsp coconut oil, divided

1/2 red bell pepper, chopped

1 stalk celery, chopped

3 cloves fresh garlic, minced

28 oz can whole tomatoes, drained

1 cup organic marinara sauce

1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves, chopped

2 tsp honey

1 1/2 cups coconut milk

1/4 tsp Celtic Sea Salt (more or less to taste)

Fresh ground pepper to taste

Dashes of dried thyme, rosemary and oregano

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

2 cups chicken broth

Prepared quinoa

Goat cheese

Preparation

1.  In a large soup pot, heat the Tamari and 1 tbsp coconut oil over med-high heat.

2.  Stir in the chopped onions, celery and bell peppers and sauté for about 5 minutes before adding the garlic, carrots and about 1/2 cup chicken.  Sauté another 5 minutes.

3.  Add the tomatoes, coconut milk, basil, broth, salt, marinara sauce and remaining spices (wait to add the remaining 1 tbsp coconut oil and nutritional yeast until the very end before pureeing).

4.  Let soup come to a boil and cook on low-med heat for about 1/2 hour, allowing all of the flavors to meld together.

5.  Pour all of the contents from the soup pan into a blender, along with 1 tbsp coconut oil and the nutritional yeast.  Blend on high for about 30 seconds until smooth and creamy.

6.  Portion out soup into bowls and add prepared quinoa, mix until combined.  Top with crumbled goat cheese.

Recipe slightly adapted from Amazing Grass:  Fresh Start Challenge

What I love most about this dish is how super duper easy it is to make.  Just throw everything in a pot, let it hang out for a bit and then toss it in the blender.  And with enough soup for 4-5 servings, there is plenty to share or hide away in the freezer for later ;)

PS:  Congratulations to Tiffany T for winning the Amazing Grass Giveaway!  And a big thank you to everyone who participated.  Cheers to a Fresh Start!

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What’s in the Box? #62

boxquestionintrowhite

Today is a very special day because it is my precious little love’s 2nd birthday.  And boy did we have fun!  I know I say it often, but time really does fly.  It feels like yesterday that we were celebrating her 1st birthday.  While I was working on her monthly post last night, I was in awe of how much she has grown.  It is such a joy to watch her become her own little person.  She is pretty darn cute :)  Here she is blowing out her candles on her hot pink ice cream cake…(ps: she only wanted to eat the “sparkles”…aka sprinkles).

Harper is 2!

Happy Birthday baby girl!  Mommy and daddy love you to pieces…

So now that Harper has us all in the mood to party, let’s celebrate our fruits and veggies :)

Last week we only had a total of 6 link ups but these ladies clearly came to party!!!  I mean Roasted Beet, Caramelized Onion and Goat Cheese Pizza, Pineapple Kale Juice, and Split Pea Soup?  I wish I could reach through the computer screen and sample a taste of each.  They all look and sound spectacular :)  Thanks for sharing ladies.  I am officially craving each of these dishes for my next three meals.

Speaking of meals, what the heck am I going to be doing with all this loveliness this week?

In Her Chucks- What's in the Box? #62

Well, let’s start with the chard.  I have been hoping and praying for some chard.  I recently came along another chard soup recipe, and after the success of my last soup experiment, I am feeling confident about trying something new and of course, looking forward to sharing with you :) (ps: speaking of soup, look for the Tomato Basil Bisque recipe soon…I’m shooting for the weekend).  And we all know soup goes perfectly with salad, so that head of lettuce will be delicious topped with some sliced avocado and homemade dressing.

I am thrilled about the strawberries again!  And I love the pairing of strawberries with kiwi.  Kind of brings me back to my first taste of Snapple when I was in elementary school.  Our student government put in a vending machine, but we weren’t allowed to have sodas so it would dispense Snapples instead.  Kiwi Strawberry was my favorite flavor.  Now I take a sip of it and almost keel over from diabetes.  Too sweet.  But I can’t get enough of the real thing.  Yummy, fresh and organic fruit simply makes me happy :)

Another fruit I am excited about are the mandarins.  I just can’t decide if I am going to eat them or juice them.  Guess it depends on if they make through the weekend or not.

So after all the delicious fish recipes I made during the Fresh Start Challenge, I am on a mission to cook fish more often.  Here is an amazing recipe I plan on making to help me use up that cilantro.  Served on a bed of my favorite potatoes with a side of broccoli and that is one scrumptious meal!

And finally some lovely leeks.  It’s been a while since I have whipped up this quiche so I think I will have to revisit the recipe.  I love that it can be served for breakfast, lunch or dinner, making it easy to meal plan for the week :)

Your turn:  What are some of your favorite ways to use the fruits and veggies shown?  Any special recipe, tips or tricks you’d like to share?  Looking forward to reading your responses :)

Linking up for the first time?  Click here for more info…and Welcome!


PS: Don’t forget to enter the giveaway!  You have until February 25th to get your entries in.  Remember to leave a comment on the original post letting me know that you have completed the tasks.  Your comments act as your entry into the giveaway. Good luck!

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Fresh Start: Day 3 & 4

Before I get into what I have been munching on the last few days, I need to share something with you.

I know you are not going to believe me when I tell you this, but I lost my keys today.  No joke.  The universe is having a blast with me and the idea of locking me out of things.  Can someone please translate this for me?

So, as suggested by my husband, I stayed home most of the morning.  Harper and I lounged in our PJS, built igloos with her blocks and did some chores.  In the midst of doing laundry, I ran out of soap.  So I decided to run to the store to pick some up.  While I was out I figured I would take care of some other errands I needed to do.  Harper and I took a trip to Michaels to get some treat bags for her Valentine’s day party tomorrow.  As I approached the car I went to grab the keys from the shopping cart and they were gone.  I went back in the store and walked each aisle 3 or 4 times.  I kept asking the store clerks and the managers if anyone had turned them in but no such luck. I reluctantly called Freddie again and he said he would be to us as soon as he could.  In the meantime I went back out to the parking lot and scoped out the scene.  I decided to go into a few other stores to see if someone had turned them in there and sure enough I found them at RiteAid.  But after yesterdays debacle, I didn’t feel like laughing, I felt like crying.  Guess I need to start affixing my keys to my hip.  Lesson learned.  Again.

Luckily, I am loving this Fresh Start Challenge.  So lets focus on what’s right around here and take a look at the grub…

day 31.  First Thing: Amazing Grass’s Amazing Meal mixed with Coconut Water-  Still totally in love with this drink.  It’s sweet, it’s healthy, it’s delicious.  I will most definitely be continuing this routine once the challenge is completed.

2.  Breakfast: Spinach and Egg Scramble-  Talk about a party in the skillet.  Eggs, spinach, garlic, green onions, red bell pepper, goat cheese, tomatoes and avocado.  Yummy in my tummy.  This meal had me FULL!  So much delicious goodness I lasted until the late afternoon before I was ready for lunch.  Breakfast of champions for sure.

3.  Lunch:  Fresh Tuna Salad over Lettuce-  Finished off the last of the fresh tuna today.  Such a simple dish to make and yet so life changing.  Had I known it was this easy to make homemade tuna from fresh fish I would have been doing this ages ago.  My favorite recipe so far.

4.  Snack:  Amazing Grass Bar–  A chocolate bar that is healthy?  Look no further.  Amazing Grass has made all of my wildest dreams come true.  You need to eat one of these.  Stat.

5.  Dinner:  Tomato Basil Bisque with Quinoa and Goat Cheese-  This vegetarian soup knocked my socks off.  Love the addition of the quinoa and goat cheese which made it a bit more hearty.  It was the first time I ever cooked with coconut milk and I am officially hooked.  Can’t wait to share the recipe with you guys!

6.  Snack:  Nana’s Peanut Butter Cookie–  So, the meal plan suggested Nana’s Gluten Free Cookie Bars, but I was unable to find them.  Which means I indulged in a peanut butter cookie instead.  And it was oh so sinful (in a good way).  No refined sugar, no eggs and no dairy.  Looking forward to seeing what their other products taste like.

day 4

1.  First Thing: Amazing Grass’s Amazing Meal mixed with Coconut Water-  Not much more for me to say except for I am officially Amazing Grass’s number one fan.  As much as I love the Pomegranate and Mango flavor, I can’t wait to taste some of the other varieties they offer.

2.  Breakfast: Naturally Sweetened Goat Yogurt– After my Amazing Meal, I wasn’t really hungry for breakfast, so this yogurt was perfect.  I have a few other flavors in the fridge but went with my favorite Apricot Mango instead.  Next time, strawberry :)

3.  Lunch: Brown Rice Sushi-  When I read that I got to eat sushi today I started having daydreams of enjoying fresh sushi at my favorite japanese restaurant while sipping on a mug of green tea.  And then I remembered I had a toddler, and realized, it would probably be easier to pick up some sushi from Whole Foods (which happened to be where I was buying my laundry detergent anyways).  Their sushi is pretty good and very fresh and the whole experience of eating it in the comfort of my home while Harper scarfed down her mac and cheese was much more relaxing than eating at a restaurant.

4.  Snack:  Almonds and an Apple- Nothing fancy, just something simple.  But the perfect pairing, really.  Salty and sweet.  And easy to eat on the go.  I grabbed this snack before heading out to take Harper to swim class and it absolutely hit the spot.

5.  Dinner:  Smoked Salmon Rolls- Stuffed with goat cheese, avocado, arugula, Dijon mustard, Kalamata olives, green onions and a little bit of cilantro, these little gems are beyond decadent.  I can see serving these as an appetizer or thrown on top of a salad.  I am not the biggest fan of smoked salmon, but putting them under the broiler for 6-8 minutes almost made them taste like bacon.

6.  Snack:  Avo-Banana Pudding-  This was a true experiment for me.  I have never attempted using avocado in a sweet dish but the result was awesome!  Plus, I got to use fresh coconut for the first time which was rad.  The fresh strawberries really took this healthy dessert to the next level.

I am halfway through my first week and I am feeling great.  I am not only enjoying delicious foods but I am learning a ton at the same time.  In addition to the daily meal plans, the Fresh Start Challenge shares a video about how and why these life changes are important.  I am so grateful for all the knowledge that I am gaining on this journey.  My hope is that now that I know better, I will do better.

Wanna join me in turning over a new leaf?  Check out Amazing Grass’s Two Week Challenge and commit this new year to creating a new you :)

*Full Disclosure:  Amazing Grass provided me with one bottle of Amazing Meal free of charge.  I was not paid to write this post. With exception of some of the factual information given about the various products, all opinions regarding the products are my own and 100% honest.

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