Bacon Avocado & Feta Salad

After a long weekend full of food and drinks, this always seems to be what Mike and I end up googling….

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So, in an attempt to find a recipe that was healthy but also not boring, I went to where I always go for food ideas… Pinterest! After a few minutes of searching, I found the perfect combo of satisfying and sensible. Plus, it was simple and quick to make which is always preferred. Totally something you could do on a week night and unlike many salad recipes, we were both surprised how full we still were later that night. Anyways, hope you enjoy as much as we did!

Bacon Avocado & Feta Salad 

Balsamic Dressing
  • ⅓ cup balsamic vinegar
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons water (or more oil if you wish)
  • 2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • ¼-1/2 teaspoon salt (adjust to your tastes)
Salad:
  • 5 ounces |150g bacon, diced and trimmed of all fat
  • 8 cups chopped Iceberg and Romaine
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1/4 cucumber, chopped
  • ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
  • extra Italian seasoning
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

Whisk together the dressing and if you’re going to add grilled or seared chicken, use this as the marinade as well. Once dressing is made, refrigerate. Fry bacon to a crisp so that it can be easily crumbled. As the bacon is cooling on paper towels, prepare salad fixings and add all together, crumble bacon atop and toss with dressing. Serve and enjoy!


As I mentioned, you could easily grill chicken to add protein or toast up some Sourdough bread as a side.

That’s all for today! Hope you are having a wonderful Wednesday! Half way thru the week, yippee!

Love & light,

Jessy

Pasta e Fagioli Soup Recipe

When it comes to weeknights can be exhausting and a little frantic at times after you’ve worked a full day and are getting home late. Plus, if you’re trying to eat healthy (especially after a Super Bowl style previous weekend), it can be really difficult. That’s why I love to make big meals on Sunday that are healthy, yummy and easy to reheat! This soup recipe is all of those things so I wanted to share it with you all!

PASTA E FAGIOLI RECIPE:

Ingredients

  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
  • 1 cup diced carrots (about 2 medium)
  • 1 cup diced celery (about 3 stalks)
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced (1 Tbsp)
  • 3 (8 oz) cans tomato sauce
  • 2 (14.5 oz) cans low sodium chicken broth or beef broth
  • 1/2 cup water, then more as desired
  • 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 2 tsp granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 3/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 scant cup dry ditalini pasta
  • 1 (15 oz) can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 (15 oz) can great northern beans, drained and rinsed
  • Finely shredded Romano or Parmesan cheese, for serving

Directions

  • Heat 1 Tbsp olive oil in a large non-stick saucepan over medium high heat, crumble in ground lean turkey and cook, stirring occasionally until cooked through. Dab off any fat with a paper towel then transfer turkey to a plate and set aside. Heat remaining 1 Tbsp olive oil in same large saucepan, onions, carrots, and celery over medium-high heat until tender about 6 minutes, add garlic and saute 1 minute longer. Reduce heat to a low, add tomato sauce, broth, water, canned tomatoes, sugar, basil, oregano, thyme, marjoram, uncooked pasta and cooked beef then season with salt and pepper to taste. Cover with lid and allow to simmer, stirring occasionally, until veggies are soft, about 20 minutes.
  • Add kidney beans and great northern beans. Thin with a little more water if desired. Allow to cook 2 minutes longer. Serve warm with grated Romano or Parmesan cheese.



Voila! 40 minutes later, you have a big healthy pot of deliciousness hot and ready for your enjoyment on these cold winter nights.

We like to buy a loaf of fresh sourdough bread as well and put some olive oil, garlic and oregano then toast for some dipping!

Hope everyone has stayed safe and warm over the past few days. And happy Friday!

Love & light,

Jessy

Hunger Pains

I’m so hungry. Literally, all I can think about is food. And that’s because I can barely have any.

Tomorrow will be two weeks since I got pancreatitis and one thing I learned is that it’s no joke and it’s no fun. I’ve been home from the hospital for 3 days now and my stomach is no better than it was a week ago. There’s a constant feeling of uncomfortableness that hums throughout the day and then after I eat I get sharp stabbing pains. This type of suffering would maybe be worth it if I was eating delicious food… pizza, nachos, mac n cheese…. things of that nature. But instead I’m only allowed to have low fat, fat free and dairy free. Things in the realm of low-fat soups, saltines, fresh fruit, steamed broccoli, grilled chicken.. none of the above are worth a painful aftermath. I’m still not sure how long that regimen will last but I was told that it could be up to a year until I’m fully able to eat everything I once was. Here’s to hoping it doesn’t take that long. I’m a buff chix nachos type of girl and having that taken away really bites the big one.
Although my thoughts are being consumed with “I wish I could eat this” and “Ughhh my stomach hurts so bad,” I also am thinking about what tomorrow will bring. Tomorrow is another big day as I meet with my doctors about where we go from here. Since one of the main chemotherapy drugs that I have been on is what caused the pancreatitis, the risk is too great to continue on with that specific drug. I was scheduled to get ten doses and I had only gotten four so far meaning I won’t get 6 of the scheduled treatments sessions. And not finishing up a session of my treatment plan, well that’s scary. Scary because if that’s what my doctors knew to be the best chance of beating this, what does it mean now that I won’t be getting them all? Hopefully there are alternative drugs and avenues we can take but it definitely makes me nervous to think we’re not going with the strongest option. So tomorrow I’ll once again be at the hands of my doctors.
On a positive note, I’ve been working on a homemade chicken noodle soup all day that I will be having for dinner tonight. The chicken is shredded, the veggies look soft and I used whole wheat egg noodles that look delicious. So cheers to it turning out good and me getting a yummy meal in my tummy.
XOXO,
Jessy
p.s. in honor of being unable to crush food, here’s a pic of me mowing two breakfasts before treatment a few months ago!
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Healthy, Easy & Yummy: Mediterranean Tuna Salad

Healthy, Easy & Yummy: Mediterranean Tuna Salad

I really like tuna but I hate that it typically comes smothered in mayo. However, at the salad bar at work, they started putting out this tuna salad that was delicious and had no mayo. SO I tried recreating it and (if I do say so myself) did a pretty damn good job.

Mix together the following ingredients:
– tuna
– chopped kalamata olives
– artichokes
– red onions
– parsley

Toss with lemon juice and olive oil and serve on a wheat pita with original hummus and cucumbers. Drizzle with balsamic vinaigrette, if desired.

The beauty of this recipe (beyond the health benefits) is that you can make a big batch at once and keep using the leftovers for lunches the rest of the week.

Hope everyone enjoys it as much as I did! Let me know what you think!

xoxo
Jess