Cooking with Rhubarb

On a recent grocery run, I finally found rhubarb for sale!  Technically a vegetable, rhubarb is a bright red, crisp, celery-like stalk, with an unexpected tart flavor.  Rhubarb is typically cooked with sugar, to tame the tartness.  I generally lower the sugar by adding strawberries when I cook the rhubarb.

RhubarbStrawberryCompote2

Rhubarb-Strawberry Compote
Makes 2 cups

1 pint strawberries, hulled and quartered
3-4 rhubarb stalks, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water

Place all ingredients in a saucepan, over medium-high heat.  Stir occasionally, until rhubarb begins to break down and soften, approximately 8-10 minutes.  Once cooled, refrigerate until ready to serve.  Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.

 

I’ve been making a rhubarb strawberry compote for years, always using it as a topping over ice cream or over Greek yogurt with granola for breakfast.  But, I’m drooling over the these cardamom crepes topped with the rhubarb-strawberry compote!

cardamom crepes

(Source)

 

A few other recipe ideas using rhubarb:

rhubarb sweet rolls

rhubarb strawberry smoothie

or try a rhubarb simple syrup in an adult beverage, like Rhubarb Fizz.

rhubarb upside down cake

 

Have you cooked with rhubarb?  If so, please share your favorite recipes!

– Brittany

Advertisements

Summer Succulents

There is no denying it…I’ve got the planting BUG!!!  I’m slowly but surely turning my brown thumb green (I’d say i’m at a greenish-orange at this point).  One of the best ways to start working on your plant-growing-skills is with succulents!  They don’t require a lot of maintenance (which is perfect for a gardening newbie), they are inexpensive and can be found at your local hardware store, there are so many different varieties and they look exceptionally cool in unexpected containers!!  Fill up a birdcage with them, plant them in a shallow wood bowl, let your “creative container brain” run  wild with these babies!!  Here are a few pin-teresting inspiration images to get you going…

DIY Showoff

(source)

frame

(source)

suc

(source)

paperdame_21

(source)

stones

(source)

tin

(source)

crack

(source)

log

(source)

bird cage

(source)

wood

(source)

head

(source)

box

(source)

hands

(source)

letter

(source)

steps

(source)

Happy Planting!
~ Jillian

Happy Memorial Day!!

Happy Memorial Day!!

I hope you and yours are enjoying a long weekend celebrating with family and friends!  Thank you to all who have served!!

barn flag

 

Happy Happy
~ Jillian & Brittany

Yummo – Jalapeño Corn

These days dinner has to be quick, still healthy but QUICK!  Life has been crazy and spending hours in the kitchen just isn’t going to work!!  I also have to get creative when it comes to finding recipes that both me and my hubby can enjoy together.  He’s a meat and potatoes kind of guy while I tend to be the veggie, gluten-free kinda lady.  So recently at a neighborhood pot-luck and we both had this corn dish on our plate…i knew we had a potential winner!!  I of course made a few HSE modifications to the original recipe…but its quick…easy….healthy…and super delicious!!

Jalapeño Corn

Ingredients

  • 1 bag of ORGANIC frozen yellow corn (corn is one of the top GMO crops…so GMO free and organic is a must!!)
  • spoonful of diced jalapeños (or diced green chilies if you want to tame it down)
  • 2-3 spoonfuls of plain greek yogurt
  • salt

Directions

  1. Cover frozen corn in water and bring to a boil
  2. Pull greek yogurt out of the refrigerator (allow it to get closer to room temperature)
  3. Drain water and add jalapeños (or green chilies); simmer for approx 5 mins (just enough to allow the pepper’s flavor mix in with the corn)
  4. Add salt and remove the the corn from the heat
  5. Stir in a spoonful of greek yogurt (until you reach desired consistency)
  6. Enjoy!!

jalapeno corn

Happy Eating!!
~ Jillian

 

Banana, Peanut Butter and Oats Smoothie

Hello! I’m back from a brief period of radio silence.  The husband is on a summer break from grad school studies!  We have been busy catching up on lost time with family and friends.  The weather in Georgia has been pretty great over the last couple of weeks – sunny, and not too hot or humid.  Thus, we have also been hiking, doing yard work and finding any other excuse to be outside!

With all of this outdoor time and busier schedule, I’m turning to quick meals most days.  This smoothie recipe is another favorite for a quick (and portable) breakfast.   It is filling and delicious!  The fiber and protein in the oats, milk and peanut butter helps this smoothie stick with you for quite a while.  Plus, it is a great way to use up those old bananas!  The more ripe your banana, the sweeter the smoothie will taste.

Banana-PnutButterSmoothie

Peanut Butter, Banana & Oats Smoothie
Serves: 1
1/4 cup rolled oats
Handful of ice (4-5 cubes)
1 very ripe banana
1 Tbs peanut butter
1 cup of your preferred milk (cow, almond, coconut)

Dump only the rolled oats into blender.  Use Chop setting to break down the oats to a powder/flour consistency.  Next, add ice, banana, peanut butter and milk to blender.  Blend until smooth.

Enjoy!

– Brittany

 

Monday Mantra: life of love

Happy Monday to you all…especially to all the momma’s out there!!  I hope you had a fabulous mother’s day and were able to share it with the ones you love most!!  I took my mom to one of her favorite things to do…a baseball game!!  The universe was smiling on us when they scheduled a Braves/Cubs game in Atlanta for Mother’s day (she is the Cub’s #1 fan!!).  Game didn’t end up going her way BUT fun was had by all!!  After such a LOVE filled weekend…I hope you can take a little extra love into the week and find the good in every day!!  (check out #100happydays to see the most recent happy moments from the participants of the 100 days of happiness challenge!)

“If you love the life you live, you will live a life of love”

pure_cute_love-normal

Choose Joy!
~ Jillian

Monday Mantra: Do

Happy Monday!! I hope you had a fabulous weekend with great weather like we did in Georgia. It was sunny and warm and JUST what we needed!! I spent as much time as possible outside (despite the mounds of pollen still floating around!). Did a little catching up with friends, a little relaxing in the sunshine and a LOT of heavy lifting in the garden!!! I just love this time of year with everything blooming and so much new growth!! It’s a time to start fresh and embrace whatever new adventures lay in front of us!!

“It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we DO”

actions

Happy Monday!!!
~ Jillian

Recent Reads – April

April was a busy month!  Between Spring weddings, hiking adventures, yard work and Spring cleaning, I stayed on the go and had less time for reading.  I did manage to read two books that had been on my to-read list for a while.  One was borrowed from a friend and the other was a “daily deal” eReader book that I picked up for $1.99 a couple of months ago.

April Recent Reads

Kira-Kira, by Cynthia Kadohata
Kira-Kira is the story of a Japanese family in the 1950s, told through the eyes of the middle child, Katie.  Katie adores her older sister, Lynn, who teaches her to look for the kira-kira (which means glittering or shining) in everything in life.  Early in the novel, the family business closed and they were relocated from Iowa to rural south Georgia.  For the first time, Katie realizes that she is different, as her family is one of just a few Japanese families among a town of white Georgians.  They are either stared at or shunned by the people in town and treated like outsiders.  Her parents take jobs at a local poultry processing plant, where they work long hours and rarely have time to spend with their three children.  When Lynn becomes fearfully ill, her family starts to unravel.  Because Lynn is too weak, it is Kate who must strengthen her family and help them to see the kira-kira of hope that lies ahead.

As a young adult novel, Kira-Kira was a quick and easy read.  I think readers of any age can empathize with Katie’s adoration of her older sibling and also with her fears and sorrow over her family’s struggles.  I enjoyed watching Katie grow and mature throughout the trials that her family endured.  Kira-Kira is a great reminder to strive to see a silver lining or a positive in any situation.  That beauty lies all around us, if we would only open our eyes and see it.

Nefertiti, by Michelle Moran
Nefertiti depicts the revolutionary rein of Pharaoh Akhenaten and Queen Nefertiti, through the eyes of Nefertiti’s younger sister, Mutnodjemet.  Her sister watches Nefertiti morph into a power-hungry queen, who goes against her family’s wishes and turns her back on the Gods.  Nefertiti will stop at nothing to appease her husband’s wishes and to cement her place in history as the greatest and most beautiful Queen of Egypt…no matter the cost or consequence.

I thoroughly enjoyed Nefertiti and could not put it down!  Moran captivated me with her vivid descriptions of the characters, Amarna and the rest of Egypt.  I liked that the story was written from the perspective of Mutnodjemet.  Nefertiti was not a likeable character, but Mutnodjemet’s loyalty and compassion helped the reader to understand the reasons behind Nefertiti’s actions.  Because the history of their rein is largely lost to time, much of the book was obviously embellished.  But, the author made great efforts to insert accurate historical information into the novel, when possible.  But, keep in mind that this book is fiction.  About halfway through, I commented to my husband that the book reminded me of The Other Boleyn Girl. I saw that a few others commented on Good Reads that they felt the same way.  So, if you liked that book and are fascinated by Egyptian history, you will love this book!

What have you been reading lately?  Any good suggestions?   You can read my other book reviews here, here, and here.

– Brittany