Monthly Archives: March 2014

RECIPE – Chickpea Vegetable Soup

Although I wouldn’t classify this recipe as one of the simplest ever, it’s easier than it appears at first glance.  AND so worth it, because it’s delicious!  I usually make it on a Sunday afternoon, when I’ve got nothing scheduled and more time in my day.  Enjoy!

Chickpea Vegetable Soup


PREP & COOK TIME:  Approx 2 hours (includes 30 mins of letting soup stand)


5 cups vegetable stock or broth

1 TBS, plus 1 tsp olive oil

1 medium onion, diced

3 stalks celery, sliced

2 cups chopped, green cabbage

1 tsp dried basil

1 tsp dried tarragon

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper

1/4 tsp caraway seeds

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes

3 carrots, diced

2 small red potatoes, peeled & diced (1 cup)

# We usually scrub them well and dice without peeling

1 1/2 cups canned chickpeas, rinsed and drained

16 oz canned crushed tomatoes

1 tsp balsamic or red wine vinegar

3 TBS chopped fresh basil or parsley (optional)


In large saucepan, heat stock over medium heat; do not boil.

Meanwhile, in large pot, heat oil over medium-high heat.  Add onion & garlic and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes.

Stir in celery and cabbage, a little at a time.

Add basil, tarragon, thyme, salt, pepper, caraway seeds and pepper flakes and cook, stirring, 3 minutes.

Add carrots, potatoes and hot stock and bring to a boil.

Stir in chick peas and tomatoes and return to a boil.

Reduce heat to low, cover partially and simmer 45 minutes.

Remove from heat, stir in vinegar.

Let stand, covered 30 minutes before adjusting seasonings.

Re-warm over low heat.  Ladle into bowls, garnish with basil or parsley if using and serve.


Per Serving:  178 cal; 6g Protein; 3g Total Fat (0 Sat. Fat); 22g Carb; 0 Cholesterol; 567mg Sodium

Peggy’s Menu Plan #2

I thought I’d be posting a new menu plan every week for you, and now I realize that may have been just a tad bit ambitious for me.  Even though I do create one each week for my family, converting that piece of paper (yes paper) onto my blog with links and recipes is a whole other story.

Plus, I’ve had time to think about other things I’d like write about here that may be of value to you, and slightly more interesting than a menu plan.

So my new goal is to post a 7 day menu plan every 3 to 4 weeks or so.  They will still be menus from consecutive weeks of dining at my home.  That way you’ll get my notes of how we deal with any bumps & blips in the plan, as you’ll see below, and so you can see that they are in fact my family’s actual plans.  In between those weeks, I’ll be posting other tips and info about healthy eating and lifestyle habits to help feel and look your best.

So here is Menu Plan #2:  (Click here for the first plan I posted back in February.)

As often happens, the latter part of last week’s plan shifted a bit after we ended up going out to dinner on Saturday evening.  AND… I forgot to take the shrimp out of the freezer.  ):

So last Sunday’s dinner plan became this Tuesday’s menu.  Flexibility is key when it comes to menu planning.  No doubt plans will change in your day-to-day busy-ness as well.  This is just one example of how having a plan doesn’t mean you have to stick to it word for word, and can actually give you a jump on next week!

Monday – Roast Chicken, Zucchini & Squash, FRO Brussels Sprouts

Tuesday – Stir Fried Shrimp & Vegetables, Brown Rice

# We often use different vegetables.  This week I’ll be using you red & green bell peppers, carrots & snow peas, since we already had zucchini & squash last night.

Wednesday – Quinoa w/Roasted Jalapenos & Grapes*, Sautéed Swiss Chard

*We love this recipe!

Thursday – Turkey Marinara w/ Spaghetti Squash, Green Beans

#I saute chopped veggies (green pepper, onion, carrots, whatever you like), then add ground turkey and cook until no longer pink; add a jar or 2 (depending on the size of your family) of organic pasta or spaghetti sauce, and heat til warm.  So simple!

Friday –  Rockfish Chimichurri, Roasted Asparagus, Succotash

# This recipe is good with salmon or any flaky white fish

Saturday – Hamburgers, Broccoli, Sweet Potato Fries

# Whole Foods has the best, pre-made, uncooked burgers… usually around $6 to $7 for 4 burgers.  We top with sliced tomato, avocado and Dijon mustard and eat w/ a knife & fork.  It’s so delicious, no one misses the bun!  Also, cook just enough fries for everyone to have a small portion.

Sunday – Chick Pea Vegetable Soup, Salad

# I’ll post the soup recipe separately… It’s another one from a magazine.