Kid Friendly Hummus

Monday, April 29, 2013

I've tried many hummus recipes and this is one of my favorites. It doesn't contain tahini paste, which most people would say gives hummus its distinct flavor. I've made hummus with and without tahini, and maybe my tastebuds are not fine-tuned enough to know the difference, because I don't miss it!  I can eat this by the spoonful. I love using it as dip for veggies and homemade pita chips. I also love putting a pile of alfalfa sprouts on a plate, scooping hummus on top, and crumbling pita chips on top--what an awesomely crunchy meal.

Best thing about this particular version of kids LOVE it! Score!

Kid-Friendly Hummus (


  • 3 cups canned chickpeas (1 28 oz. can) drained and rinsed (I like using 1.5 c. white beans like cannolinni and 1.5 c. chickpeas...or one can of each)
  • 2 large cloves of garlic peeled and crushed (one clove is strong enough for us!)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup water (at MOST--add just a little at a time while blending)
  • Pinch of chili pepper (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon paprika


  1. Check with a grownup and wash your hands before you begin.
  2. Put all the ingredients in a blender (except the water and paprika.)
  3. Use the puree setting on the blender to mix everything until it is smooth and creamy. If it's too thick, turn off the blender, and drizzle in a little water (up to 1/2 cup) and puree again until it's the right texture for dipping.
  4. Turn off the blender and wait until it has completely stopped. Use a spatula to scrape all the hummus into a shallow bowl.
  5. Drizzle a little bit of olive oil over the top, and sprinkle it with paprika.
  6. Clean up the kitchen before you dig into your yummy hummus dip — or as I call it, yummus!

Mexican Roasted Potatoes

Sunday, April 28, 2013

These are just amazing! Small and bite-sized with the perfect amount of flavoring. They go well with breakfast foods, or taco/Mexican night, or on a salad. You could cut the recipe in half if you can't imagine going through that many potatoes in one meal, but as for me, I say bring on the leftovers for my lunch salads!

Mexican Roasted Potatoes 
OP BasilPerfume via The Nourishing Gourmet

By the way, the Dijon style mustard is totally not culturally accurate, but it adds a wonderful element so I couldn’t help add it in. You could add more heat by increasing the cayenne powder, for those who like things spicy.

8 medium potatoes, peeled and dice
1/3 cup of olive oil
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon sea salt (plus more to sprinkle on top)
freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
1/8 teaspoon cayenne powder
1 tablespoon Dijon style mustard

1 lime, juiced (or more to taste)

1-Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

2-Combine all of the ingredients, except the potatoes and lime in a jar and shake to thoroughly mix ingredients (or whisk in a bowl).

3-Pour your diced potatoes into a jelly roll pan, and toss with the oil mixture. Sprinkle with salt and freshly ground pepper.

4-Roast for about 40 minutes, until the potatoes are well cooked, and browning on the edges. Take out of the oven, and sprinkle the juice of one lime over it. Taste test, and add more lime juice or salt, if needed and serve.

Smoky Tomato Lentil Soup with Spinach and Olives

Friday, April 19, 2013

I made this on a whim because I happened to have all the ingredients on hand, and I was just blown away. Normally I find kalamata olives overwhelming because they are so rich and salty, but in this recipe they are the STAR! Wow, I can't wait to make this again. And I've mentioned before my love-hate relationship with lentils--I have to say, this recipe puts them in the LOVE LOVE category!

Source: My favorite vegan website, PostPunkKitchen

Smoky Tomato Lentil Soup with Spinach and Olives

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons sweet smoked paprika
1 cup dried brown lentils (or green lentils)
5 cups vegetable broth
1/2 teaspoon salt
Fresh black pepper
1 24 oz can fire-roasted tomatoes
4 cups fresh baby spinach (or chopped spinach)
3/4 cup roughly chopped kalamata olives
Preheat a 4-quart soup pot over medium high heat. Saute onions in oil with a pinch of salt until translucent, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and saute for 15 seconds or so, then mix in the thyme and paprika.
Add the lentils, broth, salt and pepper. Cover and bring to a boil. Once boiling, turn heat to medium and cook for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lentils are almost tender. Add the tomatoes, crushing the tomatoes with your hands to get them into small pieces, as you add them. Bring to a boil, then lower heat to simmer for another 20 minutes or so, or until lentils are very tender.  Add spinach and olives and stir frequently until spinach is wilted and velvetty. Add water to thin, if necessary.
Taste for salt, and let sit for 10 minutes or so for flavors to marry, then serve!

Italian Pasta Pie

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

This was a hit with the family. In fact, my husband said "this needs to go into the official rotation." I've never heard him use those words before...has he been stalking my recipe message boards??? (my babycenter friends will get it).

Anyway. I will admit that my middle son found the sundried tomatoes gross and disturbing, so next time I will replace those with a different veggie. Really you could go with about any veggie you want. I had to use dried basil, but during summer garden time I will try fresh.

I was a bit aghast at the thought of using 10 eggs, but this meal make a LOT. In fact, from now on I will cut the recipe in half and use a smaller baking dish, as half the recipe would be plenty for our family for supper.

Italian Pasta Pie (Weelicious)
10 large eggs
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons chopped basil leaves
1/2 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, plus more for sprinkling on top
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, diced
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 cup chopped sundried tomatoes
2 cups cooked rotini or fusilli pasta
1 cup cooked, shredded, and chopped chicken breast (about 1 chicken breast)
Be sure to prep all the ingredients for this recipe first. It’s a great opportunity to use any vegetables you have on hand if you want to replace (or enhance) the sun-dried tomatoes or chicken.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs, 2 tablespoons water and the salt until fluffy. Add the basil and cheese, stir to combine and set aside.
3. In a large oven-safe sauté pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté for 4 minutes, or until softened.
4. Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute.
5. Stir in the sun-dried tomatoes, pasta and chicken, and stir until combined.
6. Pour the eggs over the pasta mixture and sprinkle additional cheese on top.
7. Cook for 2 minutes, or until the bottom is set (do not stir).
8. Place the pan in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden on top and cooked through.
9. Slice the pie into wedges and serve.
Serves 6

Cottage Cheese Pancakes

Sunday, April 14, 2013

When I first read the title of this recipe I was a little grossed out. I like cottage cheese, but I don't love it, and trying to imagine a pancake with cottage cheese was hard to do. My whole family really, really loves cottage cheese, which is why I was drawn to this recipe in the first place. I finally tried it, and WOW. These are some amazing little protein-packed pancakes. They remind me of thick crepes, so they go perfectly with fresh berries. There is absolutely no 'cottage cheese' flavor, so no need to be grossed out by the name!This is a recipe I will be making many many times.

Note: I use my cookie scoop to make silver-dollar sized pancakes. I don't recommend trying to make big pancakes, because they are a little tricky to flip. Keep them small and you won't have a problem.

Cottage Cheese Pancakes (


  • 3 eggs
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons honey or agave
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • butter, oil or oil spray


  1. 1. Place the first 4 ingredients in a bowl and whisk.
  2. 2. In a separate bowl whisk the dry ingredients.
  3. 3. Pour the dry mixture into the wet mixture and stir until just combined.
  4. 4. Heat a large sauté pan or griddle over medium heat, lightly coat with oil or butter and pour about 1 tbsp of the mixture onto the griddle for each pancake.
  5. 5. Cook for 2 minutes on each side or until pancakes are set and golden.
  6. 6. Serve.
  7. *To Freeze: Let pancakes come to room temperature, place in a ziploc bag, label and freeze up to 3 months.

Master Formula Veggie Lo Mein

Thursday, April 11, 2013

This is a very flexible recipe, and so tasty! I have to fight my kids for the leftovers . No, I'm kidding, I always let them have their share. Okay....I usually share. I would never push the leftovers to the back of the fridge to ensure they were all mine. Let's just move on, shall we?

Pretty much any ingredient, goes. I like how the recipe is set up so you can make choices according to what is needing used up in your veggie drawer, and you can use meat, or not. The sauce is delicious and it's nice to have measurements (though I always end up throwing in more) for the veggies. I found this 'master formula' in an awesome book called Cook Without a Book.

Master Formula Veggie Lo Mein 
Source: adapted slightly from Cook Without a Book

Optional: 8 oz extra firm tofu, drained and pressed, cut into bitesized pieces
                Or shredded seitan Or shredded cooked pork/chicken/beef

8 oz Firm Vegetables (pick one from list below)
8 oz lo mein or soba noodles
1 T. soy sauce
2 T. vegetable oil (I like to use peanut oil)
1 medium-large onion (or two if you like onions) cut into wedges
8 oz Tender Vegetables (pick one from list below)
1 T. minced garlic (about 3 or 4 cloves)
1 T. minced fresh ginger (i usually skip this, my family dislikes ginger)
Lo Mein Sauce (recipe follows)

Bring 2 quarts of water and a generous sprinkling of salt to boil in a large pot. Add the Firm Vegetable and cook until crisp-tender, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate with a slotted spoon. Add the noodles to the pot and cook, stirring frequently, until just tender; drain and set aside.

If using, toss the tofu with the soy.

Meanwhile, heat a 12-inch non-stick skillet (I use a large wok) over medium-high heat until very hot. Add 1 T. of the oil and the onion; stir-fry until crisp and spotty brown. Add the Tender Vegetable and stir-fry until just cooked, about 2 minutes. If using tofu or meat, add next and stir-fry until browned. Add the cooked firm vegetable and stir-fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Transfer everything to a plate.

Add the remaining 1 T. oil to the empty skillet (wok) and heat until shimmering. Add the noodles and stir-fry until heated through, about 2 minutes. Reutrn the vegetable mixture to the wok, along with the Lo Mein Sauce, stirring to coat. Serve hot.

Firm Vegetable Ideas
asparagus-   tough ends snapped off, spears cut into 1-inch lengths
snow peas or sugar snap peas-   strings removed if necessary
broccoli or cauliflower-   cut into small florets
carrots-   peeled and thinly sliced or julienned
white turnips or rutabaga-   peeled and cut into small dice
butternut or other winter squash-   peeled and cut into small dice
thin green beans-   cut into 1 1/2 inch lengths

Tender Vegetable Ideas
succhini or yellow squash-   halved lengthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
baby bella (cremini) mushrooms-   sliced
bell peppers-   stemmed, cored, and cut into bite-size strips
eggplant-   quartered lenthwise and thinly sliced crosswise
fennel-   stalks discarded, bulb halved, cored, and thinly sliced
cabbage or bok choy-   cored and finely shredded
bean sprouts

Lo Mein Sauce
1/4 c. vegetable broth
1/4 c. soy sauce
2 t. rice vinegar
2 t. toasted sesame oil
1 t. red pepper flakes
1 t. sugar

Whisk all ingredients together and set aside until ready to use.
There are a few steps, but if you lay everything out, it will all go very smoothly.

Little*Garden*Kitchen Copyright © 2009 Designed by Ipietoon Blogger Template for Bie Blogger Template Vector by DaPino