Roasted Sweet Potato + Apple Quinoa

Roasted Sweet Potato + Apple Quinoa

Hello. It’s me.

I’ve been terribly absent in the blogging recipes sphere. To say that I am busy is an understatement. These two gorgeous souls entrusted to me have been stealing all of my attention. I am not the least bit sorry.

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Excuse me while I take another three moments to stare at them. In person. To get my proper stalk on, I have to walk away from the computer since they are sleeping. Be right back.

I have great news for all of you… I have been terrifically busy in the kitchen creating recipes to share with you. Photographing. Instagramming. (Instagraming? Instagring?) I have been lovingly jotting each recipe down onto paper, and then… poof. They disappear.

So, I have bad news for you. I don’t have too many recipes to share with you. These recipes have gone to the same resting place as my grocery lists and half of the socks of every person residing in this house.

If you follow me on Instagram (which you so obviously should… @baconisthewaytohappiness) there is clear proof of lots of activity going on as we settle into life in our new home with our newest, sweetest addition.

However, despite all of the bad news of lost recipes, I do have good news. This one was so easy that I haven’t forgotten it, even though the recipe-grocery-list-sock-monster has devoured it.

It is easy. It is healthy. It is delicious. It is a Fall-y recipe not involving pumpkin. Face it, sometimes we all need a break from the whole pumpkin spice on my pumpkiny pumpkin craze, so that we can better appreciate our pumpkin tortilla chips that we bought to dip into our pumpkin salsa.  It’s just apples, onions, sweet potatoes, and a dash of heaven.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Apple Quinoa

Nevertheless… and plentythemore… here is a delicious, healthy dish that I cannot get enough of. In fact, I’m going to go make some more while the boys ZzZZzzzzZZzz… #thankyouJesusfornaptime. 

Roasted Sweet Potato & Apple Quinoa
Yields: 4 servings
Time: 25-30 minutes

Roasted Sweet Potato + Apple Quinoa

Ingredients
3 medium sized sweet potatoes, scrubbed
3 medium apples (try gala, but any sort will do)
1 cup sweet onion
4 cups cooked quinoa
3-4 TBS extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp coarse salt (either sea salt or kosher)
1/2 tsp black pepper
4 large eggs
1 tsp white vinegar

Directions
1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
2. Meanwhile, chop the potatoes, apples, and onion into small pieces. You can go as small or as large as you’d like.. just know it’ll affect the roasting time. I opted for about 1″ bites.
3. In a large bowl, combine the chopped potatoes, apples, and onion with olive oil, stirring until well covered. Sprinkle with the garlic powder, salt and pepper, stirring more to combine.
4. Place onto a large baking sheet and bake approximately 20-25 minutes, stirring halfway through, (or more, if you chose to go with larger pieces) until nicely browned.
5. Once finished roasting, combine the quinoa with the cooked vegetables in that same large bowl as before. Place into 4 serving bowls. Set aside.
6. It’s time to poach some eggs (if you are unable to consume poached eggs, please feel free to fry your eggs): In a small sauce pot, add enough water that comes about 1″ away from the top of the pot. Put in a pinch of salt and your vinegar and bring to a boil. Once it is rapidly boiling, crack an egg into the water, you will see a white mass forming (think Ghost of Christmas Past from Muppet Christmas Carol). Cook for 3 minutes. Remove with slotted spoon. Drain on paper towel briefly to remove excess water.
7. Place an egg on top of each serving and sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper onto each poached egg and serve immediately!

Mexican Egg Stuffed Avocados

mexican egg stuffed avocado via bacon is the way to happiness

Just because Cinco de Mayo has said adios does not mean that the aromatic flavors of Mexican cuisine shouldn’t inspire our meals all the year long. Some of the most delicious recipes have been given a Mexican spin. An all-time favorite is Mexican pizza– and this recipe looks rather inspiring! How do we keep the fiesta of flavors going?

mexican egg stuffed avocado in skillet via bacon is the way to happiness

My sister has me hooked on stuffed avocados. When I was recently at her house for lunch, she made a delicious, healthy stuffed avocado using chickpeas and other goodies. It was divine and kept me full! Avocados are packed with that good fat that our diets so often lack.

Still craving the yummy tastes of Mexican food, and always jonesin’ for some good fats in my life, I decided to fuse these two ideas together and put an egg in it, too– because, well, yum. This recipe is easy enough to half, double, triple, or fafuple! All you have to keep in mind is 1/2 of an avocado, 1 egg, 1 TBS of salsa, 1 TBS cheese, and a drizzle of enchilada sauce per serving and you’re set!

mexican egg stuffed avocado pinterest

When making room in the avocado half to stuff, I found using a serrated knife to slightly cut around where the pit was, followed by finishing the scooping touches with a grapefruit spoon really helps. (ya know, a grapefruit spoon is that weird spoon-looking thing with a serrated edge that your grandmother gave you as a wedding present.)

scooped out avocado via bacon is the way to happiness

It can be a light lunch with a side salad, an appetizer, a side for a yummy dinner, or even a side for itself! Hmmmmm…Sabroso! 

Mexican Egg Stuffed Avocados
Yields: 4 servings

Time: 25 minutes

mexican egg stuffed avocado via bacon is the way to happiness

Ingredients:
4 avocados, halved
1/4 cup salsa
1/4 cup cheddar and monterey jack shredded cheese blend
4 large eggs
Approximately 2-3 TBS enchilada sauce

Directions:
1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
2. To remove the pit from the avocado: I have found the best way is to use a chef’s knife and ever so carefully aim and whack the pit so that the knife is stuck… twist and remove (and save to grow an avocado tree!).
3. Slightly enlarge the area where the pit was to make room for the goodies.
4. First, add about 1 TBS of the yummy salsa, with as much of the liquid drained. Evenly spread it around the opening.
5. Crack your egg into the avocado opening. Not all of the egg white may fit, and that’s okay.
6. Top with about 1-2 TBS of cheese and lightly drizzle enchilada sauce.
7. Place onto baking sheet or cast iron skillet and bake for about 20 minutes for a firm yoke and about 15 minutes for a slightly runny yoke.
8. Eat right away, yum!!!

No Meat? No Problem!

Today is the day of Paczki & Fasnachts, which means that tomorrow marks the first day of Lent! It is a beautiful time of year in which Christians prepare for the Easter holiday by way of fasting and prayer. There are two days of fasting (Ash Wednesday & Good Friday). Also, Fridays throughout the duration of Lent, Catholics abstain from meat. Even though I love bacon (and boy do I ever), I do have a much greater adoration for Lent.

This means it’s time to fill your non-meat recipe arsenal for those Friday evening meals.

Here are a few of my dinner favorites from years gone by:

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Salmon & Sweet Potato Cakes

Salmon Maple Bourbon - Bacon is the Way to Happiness

Salmon with Maple Bourbon Glaze & Caramelized Onions

Gnocchi with Arugula and Sundried Tomatoes - Bacon is the Way to Happiness

Gnocchi with Arugula & Sun-Dried Tomatoes

Scrambled Falafel Pitas - Bacon is the Way to Happiness

Scrambled Falafel Pitas

cranberry-salad

Cranberry, Apple, & Avocado Salad

two-bean-chili - Bacon is the Way to Happiness

Two Bean Chili

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Crab, Butternut Squash & Walnut Macaroni & Cheese

butternut-squash-flatbread

Butternut Squash, Asian Pear, & Caramelized Onion Flatbread

Poached egg tartine - Bacon is the Way to Happiness

Spinach & Tomato Tartine with Poached Egg

 

Happy Lenting!

Easy Roast Chicken

easy roast chicken | bacon is the way to happiness

pinnable

There is something so satisfying about cooking a whole bird. From Cornish Hens to turkey, nothing tops that joy of pulling out a beautifully browned bird. The processes between purchasing, assembling, cooking, and consuming said bird can be quite intimidating.

I speak from experience. I have ruined my fair share of Cornish Hens and whole chickens. Trust me.  I have under cooked and over cooked. And all other sorts of crazy things.

However, a while ago, I swore off buying chicken breasts. Week after week, it just gets too derned expensive. Particularly if you buy organic! I have heard many a grandmother say that the best way to cook chicken for your family is by purchasing a whole chicken and using it for all its worth. I finally decided to give it a try about a year and a half ago and I became hooked.

One 3 to 4 lb chicken lasts us through several meals. But wait! There’s more. You can use the carcass (and giblets) to make stocks.  (Stay tuned for a post on making and freezing chicken stock and vegetable stock to get you through the winter).

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Easy Roast Chicken
Yields: 8 servings
Time: 10 minute prep | 1 hour 15 minute cook + 15 minute rest time

3-4 pound whole turkey
1/2 onion, quartered
3 garlic cloves
1 lemon, halved
2 TBS unsalted butter, melted OR 2 TBS canola oil
1 TBS fresh herbs (sage, rosemary, bay, and/or thyme), minced
Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
Kitchen twine

 

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

2. Remove the giblets (should be all kept in a bag… it’s okay if you have to close your eyes to remove them. You’re in good company). Rinse and pat dry the inside and outside of the bird, making sure that it is very dry.

3. Place the garlic cloves, lemon, and onion into the cavity of the bird. Bind the legs of the bird using kitchen twine (I cross the legs and twisty-turny the twine until it is secure).

4. In a small bowl, combine the herbs and about 1 TBS salt and about 2 tsps pepper. Pour in the melted butter or oil. Using a basting brush, brush the herb mixture on every square inch of the bird.

5. Place into a roasting pan and cook for an hour to an hour and 30 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.

6. Remove from oven and allow the chicken to rest for 15 minutes.*

7. Slice chicken and serve immediately. Save the onion, garlic, and carcass for later to make a stock.*

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*Cook’s notes: 

1.  I cannot stress how important this rest time is! I have ruined many a chicken until I figured out that I really do have to let it sit to finish cooking!

2. If I don’t immediately begin making stock, I store mine in a large bag in the fridge, if I can get to it within the next few days, or I place it in the freezer until I have time.