Veggie tacos

Sooo here goes my veggie tacos recipe for the people who requested them!! I am always trying to come with ideas to feed my family with no meat and well it is not easy!! But even my kids requested these today after I made them a while ago for me. Enjoy!
This recipe feeds my family of 7, so feel free to make the necessary adjusments.

Cilantro rice
I always make a more or less rice recipe based on what I have in my fridge , this one has cilantro, onions and a jalapeno pepper.

1 tbsp oil
1/2 onion chopped in big pieces
2 cups of rice
4 cups water
2 tbsp vegetable broth powder or one cube
handful cilantro leaves chopped
Salt to taste ( remember the broth has salt)
1 fresh jalapeno pepper whole (not the canned or jarred type)

In a pot bring the onion and oil to medium heat, fry the onion a bit and add the rice.
Stir and mix the rice and onions and let it fry a bit while stirring. Add the water with broth, cilantro, salt and the jalapeno pepper whole, do not cut it or it will be spicy, this is just for flavoring, if you like to cut it after it is cooked and add it to your rice than is fine.
Cover and bring to a boil, then bring it down to low and cook for 15 to 20 min, or until  rice is done ( try it ).
If you want your rice to be orange like mine ( not necessary), I used one packet of this.

For the beans I used black. I had cooked a batch the day before and I used about half of it.

1 tbsp oil
2 cups of cooked beans ( black or pinto) with some liquid
2 leeks finelly chopped ( white part only) you can use green onions if you don't like leeks.
Handful of chopped cilantro.
Seasoned salt to taste.
1tsp onion powder.
Feel free to add any spices you like here, I just use what I like .

Add the oil and onions to a pan, fry for a couple minutes then add cilantro, beans and spices and let it simmer on low until liquid is almost gone.

The toasted corn is pretty easy
2 cups cooked corn
Salt, pepper and chili powder to taste.

Place corn and spices in a pan and cook until toasted.

Sour cream
Cotija cheese
Avocado ( mashed or in pieces)
Pico de gallo (chopped tomatos, onions and cilantro with some lemon juice)
Flour or corn tortillas.
You can add anything here , maybe lettuce or purple cabagge too!
For the vegan version skip cheese and sour cream.

Assemble tacos with as much of each topping as you like and accompany with rice.

I owe what?!

So as I was putting stuff in Brenna's backpack today I noticed a wrinkled paper at the bottom of it.
When I pull it out I see that according to the school she has not returned 2 library books and well if she doesn't I have to pony up 23 bucks.

I asked where are the books?? I returned that one! she says ( the expensive one) but I don't know why they say I didn't.
UGHH needles to say I am tearing her room apart and I found one book, the cheap one of course.
I will have to go and take it up with the librarian, because the book is not here.
Why oh why do I have to go and show my badger personality? lol. Oh well, I guess I'll let you know how it goes.


I whip my man back and forth.

So this morning it's cold and we have freezing rain, lovely.
As the kids were getting ready for school , Brandon was the usually slow poke. He is just not a morning person.
When you see Brenna, my 7 year old, you see a very quiet and shy child. But wait until you see her or hear her in action. She is very outspoken and speaks her mind no matter what , unless I am around, then she resumes her quiet persona . I guess she takes on my role when I am not there lol.
As we were going out to the car, Brandon gets in and shuts the door, Brenna gets in and she waits ...
finally after a few seconds she yells, Brandon!!! Don't you know you are supposed to close the door for me??? Geez! learn how to treat women!.
Hhahaha I almost died laughing, leave it to my girls to whip men back into shape!!


Feeling like super mom on a weekday.

So tonight I decided to make empanadas.
 This is a task I do not take up often, since it takes several dozens to feed my family , so I usually make them once a year for New Year's Eve.
Well I guess I am feeling a bit bored after not working anymore and I thought, what the hell, let's do it .
This last New Year we did not  have them because we spent it with family eating super yummy tamales, so I owed my kids the treat.
I had some hamburguer in the fridge waiting to be put away and I thought well let's use it all so then I have no more meat for the rest of the week and they have to eat what I make ( vegetarian), yay! Killed 2 birds with one stone.
I made my traditional Argentine empanada recipe with hamburguer, and then I thought well what will I eat? So I had to come up with a good mix to fill the dough.
Here is a pic of the dough you can buy at the latin store, maybe one that carries south american stuff.
The brand is La Saltena and buy the oven ( horno) kind unless you want to fry.
There is also a pic of the meat filling, and while I was cooking I noticed Dexter carefully monitoring the kids' activity down stairs. Can't get anything past this guy.
Ok, onto the recipe! Here is the meat one.If you like to make your own dough I am sure there are some recipes out there if you google Argentine empanadas. I am just lazy and buy it made.

Meat filling ( makes a dozen)

1 tbsp oil
1 onion, chopped
1 lb ground beef
2 tbsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
1 hard boiled egg, chopped
10 green olives, chopped
1/2 cup raisins ( optional)
2 tbsp cornstarch or flour
Salt and pepper to taste

Place oil and onions in a skillet, over medium heat, cook 3-4 minutes until onions look clear.
Add meat and spices ( except paprika) , brown the meat and before it is done add paprika and let it simmer. Remove from heat. Add cornstarch and mix well until the filling thickens. Mix in the eggs, olives and raisins. For the sweet version, skip the olives and add 2 tbsp of sugar.
Once assembled place them in a lined cookie sheet and bake @ 375 for 20 min or until nicely browned.
Here are pics on how to assemble the empanada. Once you put in the filling, wet the edges a bit and press them together, then close it . If you cannot do this particular closure ( excuse my chipped nail polish here) then you can just press it down with a fork , but if you are using a filling with cheese , this closure is better so the cheese doesn't escape.
As for my version, well I wanted to use spinach but I had none in my fridge so I just grabbed what I had and threw it together. Here it goes.

Vegetarian filling

1 tbsp oil
1 onion chopped
1 small zucchini chopped in small pieces
1 summer squash chopped in small pieces
1 cup of mushrooms  chopped( I used white ones)
1 can cream style corn
1 cup mozzarella
1 tbsp cumin
1 tbsp onion powder
Salt and pepper to taste.
Cornstarch until it's a bit thick ( carefull not to put too much because when cornstarch cooks it gets too thick too quick , so add a bit at a time)

If you know your spices by all means improvise and use what you like , I always use cumin in my fillings. This made about 15 empanadas.

In a pan put oil and onions and fry them a bit , add mushrooms and cook for a few minutes , add the squashes and spices, I cooked them until they were a bit brown, then I added the corn and turned it to low and mixed well and let it cook a bit more, 3 to 4 min, turn off the stove and add the cornstarch. Once you have the consistency you want add cheese and let it melt.
I let it sit a bit until it cooled down a little so it wasn't too runny for the dough. It was perfect! Even 2 of my kids ate it . Woot!. For the vegan version skip the cheese.
Now pics

And here is the result, tadaaaa! These reminded me a bit of the empanadas my grandma used to make for lent when I was little , maybe for the corn flavor. One more veggie recipe for me .
Now that my super mom moment is over, I'll just have to slack for tomorrow's dinner  to balance it out.

Is Mom sick?

So last weekend I was sick. Mind you I NEVER get sick with the regular stuff ( flu, stomach flu or any of those lovely viruses out there). But I caught it bad and OMG it was not fun.
Friday night we had a poker night with my sister in law and her family, I made pizza, she made chicken tostadas for the kids, anyways. We had fun.
Saturday morning I woke up at 7 with a bad headache and very nauseous. I thought it was another of my "liver attacks" ( yes me and my liver go a long ways, maybe some day I'll share the details).
But no, this felt a lot like morning sickness, which I was lucky enough to have with only ONE of my pregnancies. So off I go to the bathroom and started my morning with a lovely deposit of bile in my toilet.
You always feel so much better after you throw up, so I went back to bed and slept until 9, which by then my kids are getting worried , where is mom???
Dallin, my 5 year old comes into my room...Mom? , so I tell him I am sick. He brings me water and tucks me in ( yes he is my sweetheart), the other 2 poke their faces in and my teen doesn't even find out until noon.
I get up and drink a boldo tea which is good for the digestive system, yes I am very anti medicine and I won't take any OTC stuff or prescribed, 3 teaspoons later I am at the toilet again...ahhh this is lovely, while I am there spewing my guts out I can feel a bad turmoil in my belly , uh oh the stomach bug is not done with me ... as I continue to make another bile deposit in my toilet, the "force" makes me poop my pants in a not very Jedi manner, yep you read right, I pooped my pants! . Dallin comes in the bathroom again and with a scared face asks me ... Mom are you ok?? , no dear, I am not ok, Mommy is sick, can you go get me a pair of pajama pants from the closet?. Dallin: why?, Me :I just pooped my pants. He runs out of the bathroom ... GUYS!!!! MOM POOPED IN HER PANTS!!!....Got to love it. So now I am mommy poopy pants. The joy of motherhood.
The nasty bug did not let me drink water or have any food for 30 long hours.
Meanwhile, today I am still recovering from the mountain of laundry that did not get done this weekend due to my sickness, which lasted about 2 days. And I am telling my kids not to tell anyone about my little accident , but I am sure it will slip...oh well.
Of all the days I can get sick it has to be a Saturday, which is the day I always do everything I don't during the week, laundry, extra cleaning, shopping, and I even had my latest project of upholstering a chair ready to go...well the chair is still sitting in my living room, bare and the fabric is all over the room , ughhh. I need a house elf.


The never ending question


What's for dinner??
So, tonight I am making broccoli soup and corn dip to accompany it and to make the meal more "fun".

My kids wanted broccoli soup in bread bowls and HEY, I can never say no, when they ask for a vegetarian meal, right?
So I will add some extra fresh broccoli to the Bear Creek one I got ( I tried the home made one and well they did not like it as much as I did, don't you love kids?) and then I found a good corn dip recipe online and tweaked it to my liking.

This one,  Hot corn dip   I found online and I liked it, I added cilantro to the mix and on top as well after I got it out of the oven, my kids ate it, which is always a plus.
I have always wanted to put my kids on a vegetarian diet, but I hate taking their choice away, so I try to model it and they try everything I make, which is more than I can ask.
Anyways, let's hope everyone is enjoying this freezing temperatures to make more soups and stews, maybe you can share some fun recipes with me!

Welcome to The Chicken Coop!

First of all, I’m a dreamer. I love to think of better ways to make my life more enjoyable and I have a crazy desire to learn, learn, learn. Everything interests me ( except politics ) and I love doing research and finding new things.
I am an LDS ( mormon), yoga loving, vegetarian, home decor addict, mom of 4. There are specific reasons why I chose this lifestyle ( you can ask if you are curious) and I love to share fun things with people.
Here, I would love to share my ideas and welcome yours, on how to live a healthy life by balancing mind, body and soul. I sure try everyday and it has been pretty interesting.