Organic Thanksgiving

While shopping at our local co-op grocer last week we decided to get a local organic turkey.

A 15 lb turkey for the 2 of us.

We rallied some family members and like that, it’s on!

What will it take to do a full organic meal for 5?  We headed to Whole Foods to find out.

We got all the ingredients to make the following dishes (from scratch!):

Turkey (not from Whole Foods but included in the grand total)

Roasted garlic and herb butter

Pecan butter


Green bean casserole (doubled the recipe)

Stuffing (w. ground pork)

Garlic mashed potatoes

Mashed butternut squash (butternuts from the garden)

Sweet potatoes


Cranberry sauce

Chocolate chip cookies


We braced for the bill… I mean, the amount of food we got is enough to feed way more than 5 people!
With the turkey and everything, our fully organic Thanksgiving meal cost us $150 … am I crazy to think that is a respectable number?
I’ll be sure to take some pix 🙂  Happy Thanksgiving to everyone – please try to buy local and keep it non-GMO!
Oh and… while I have your attention, please try to keep it simple on Friday; let’s not give those corporations (who are ruining our happiness) any more of our hard-earned money 🙂

Kitchen Cleanout: Scallop Risotto

Last night I made the easiest risotto ever!
Usually risotto requires constant stirring for at least 20 minutes, but this recipe is no-stir so you can be free to clean up the kitchen while dinner cooks!

I was able to get rid of some left over chicken broth, risotto, the spinach that was going bad from my lack of salad eating!

Scallop Risotto

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound bay scallops
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup minced onion
¼ teaspoon sugar
1 ½ cups Arborio rice
2 ½ cups low-sodium chicken broth
½ cup dry white wine
¼ cup grated Parmesan
2 cups baby spinach
Zest of ½ orange

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a large heavy pot over med-high heat.
Place scallops in the pot and sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon each of the S&P.
Sear 1 ½ minutes on each side; set aside on a plate and cover loosely with aluminum foil to keep warm.
Heat remaining oil in pot and reduce heat to med-low.
Add the onion, sugar and remaining salt and pepper and sauté 10 minutes, scraping up any brown bits left by the scallops and stirring occasionally.
Add the rice and stir to coat with onion and oil.
Stir in the broth and wine; return heat to med-high, cover and bring to a boil.
Reduce heat to medium low and simmer 20 minutes, until rice is cooked through.
Stir in the Parmesan and scallops, along with any liquid on the plate.
Toss in the spinach and serve topped with the orange zest.

Kitchen Clean-Out: Chicken Pot Pie

I’m not very good at cooking every day and I’m just as good at posting about how bad I am at cooking every day.

There’s not much to write about nothing!  Here’s a recap of what I ate all week:

Tuesday – Grilled cheese with minestrone soup (I made an extra sandwich for lunch the next day;the entire office was jealous when I toasted it up in the toaster oven!)

Wednesday – Emergency burgers!  What would I do without these!?

Thursday – I joined Tom and had a salad. (baby spinach, carrot, cucumber, bell pepper, almonds, cranberry-gorgonzola dressing)

Friday – Pasta and sauce – I have to admit, I used a jar of non-organic sauce that had been in the cupboard since before I moved in.

Saturday – Another long day away from home, we ate out.

Sunday – Finally I made a meal!  Chicken Pot Pie – YUM!  I also made Zucchini Bread!

I got rid of a can of soup, a burger and bun, a box of pasta and a jar of sauce, a bag of mixed veggies, a bag of zucchini mush, and used up more rice flour.

Chicken Pot Pie

12 oz frozen mixed vegetables
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon poultry seasoning
¼ teaspoon pepper
1 ¼ cups milk
½ cup finely chopped onion
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
¼ cup sour cream
1 ¼ lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cooked, cut into bite-size pieces
1 pie crust

Cook and drain vegetables as directed on bag.
Heat oven to 375°F.
In 2-quart saucepan, mix flour, salt, poultry seasoning, pepper and milk with wire whisk until blended. Stir in onion. Cook over medium heat 4 to 6 minutes, stirring constantly, until thickened.
Stir in soup and sour cream. Add chicken and cooked vegetables; mix well. Cook, stirring frequently, until heated.
Pour into ungreased 2-quart round casserole.
Unroll pie crust; place over hot filling. Seal edge and flute as desired. Cut slits in several places in crust.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until crust is golden brown and mixture is bubbly.
Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Kitchen Clean-Out: Venus Di Milo Soup

Tom and I were really busy shopping for a new (to us) car out of state this weekend so my dinners were pretty low key.

Friday: Left-over pasta and beans

Saturday: We went to my favorite restaurant after 9 hours on the road

Sunday: Grilled cheese sandwich with potato and leek soup

Monday: This was our longest day yet, we ended up with the best car in existence but I was tired and running on E.  Luckily, my sister hooked me up with a bowl of her Venus di Milo Soup before I brought her to run an errand – thanks Sis!

Venus di Milo Soup

• 3/4 lb hamburg (cooked, drained & crumbled)
• 8 cups beef broth

• 1/2 cup orzo
• 1 med can chopped tomatoes
• 1 – 10 oz pkg. frozen mixed vegetables

Bring broth, and onion to a boil.
Add orzo, beef, and tomatoes.
Cook20 minutes.
Add frozen mixed vegetables.
Boil 15 minutes.
Season with S&P

Kitchen Clean-Out: Pasta and Beans

After cheating the night before, I knew I had to come up with something I’d like and that was easy last night.  I came up with pasta with an easy sauce and beans.  It wasn’t bad, it wasn’t great but it worked.  And I was able to get rid of the remaining egg noodles, a can of diced tomatoes, and a can of chick peas!

I’ll give you the actual recipe but I subbed chick peas and egg noodles because that’s what I had!

Pasta and White Beans in Light Tomato Sauce

2 tablespoons olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (16 ounce) can tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons minced parsley
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 (15 ounce) can cannellini beans, rinsed, drained (white kidney beans)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
6 ounces pasta, your choice, freshly cooked

Heat oil in heavy, large skillet over medium heat.
Add garlic and saute until golden, about 2 minutes.
Stir in tomatoes and cook 5 minutes.
Add parsley, basil and oregano and simmer, stirring occasionally for 15 minutes.
Add beans and cook until heated through, about 5 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper.
Place freshly cooked pasta in bowl.
Pour sauce over and toss thoroughly.
Also nice with grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese.

Kitchen Clean-Out: Burgers

So I cheated last night, I suspect you will find this a lot during this project.  Except, there are only so many opportunities to cheat before I am out of cheat meals!

Luckily I have some burger patties frozen and buns in the fridge still.  I started buying 2 lbs of grass-fed beef in the spring to give us a break from cooking on those hot summer nights or for last-minute cookout food (that’s right I have no problem throwing my own burger on someone else’s grill!).  We always kept buns in the fridge and they’d last a couple of weeks (we’d toast them so you wouldn’t even notice thy weren’t as soft as they should be).

In those 2lbs of beef I add LOTS of My Mix, freshly shredded cheese (gouda, pepper-jack, whatever!), garlic, onion, and a little bit of tamari – sometimes I add other stuff like jalapenos.  Then I press them into the perfect sized patties for me and Tom (I even mark them with Ts and Ss).  The best thing is they stay frozen for ever and you don’t even need to thaw to eat – just throw ’em on the grill!

Kitchen Clean-Out: Lemony Quinoa w. Broccoli & Cashews

FAIL!  I’m not sure why I would use so much of an ingredient that I know I don’t like just because the recipes says so.  I don’t like lemon anything, I don’t even like lemon in my water, so why would I go ahead and dump a whole 1/4 cup into my quinoa??  I’m not sure either – but YU-CK! I changed the name of this recipe to reflect the fact that this is a lemony dish!

So after saying all that; I hope you enjoy the first recipe from Project: Kitchen Clean-Out; Lemony Quinoa w. Broccoli and Cashews!


Lemony Quinoa w. Broccoli & Cashews

• 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (not packed in oil)
• 1 cup low-sodium vegetable broth
• 1 cup finely chopped red onion
• 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
• 3/4 cup dry white wine
• 1/4 cup lemon juice
• 1 cup uncooked quinoa
• 2 cups small broccoli florets
• 1/2 cup roasted cashew pieces
• 2 green onions, thinly sliced

Soak tomatoes in hot water to cover for 15 minutes to soften, drain and chop.
Bring 1/2 cup water to a simmer in a medium pot over medium-high heat.
Add onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes.
Add chopped tomatoes, broth, wine and lemon juice. Bring to a boil. Stir in quinoa.
Reduce heat and simmer, covered, 20 minutes.
Arrange broccoli on top of quinoa, cover and simmer for an additional 10 minutes.
Remove from heat and toss gently to combine.
Serve garnished with cashews and green onions.