Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Great weekend, great food

This past weekend I headed up to Grand Haven, MI to celebrate my sweet friend Brooke's bachelorette party!  We stayed in this wonderful old home that had been divided into suites and had so much fun.  We went shopping, relaxed on the beach and ate way too much food!  If you haven't been up to Grand Haven before I would totally recommend it!  It's the perfect place for a relaxing weekend get-away.  Here is a picture of all but one of her bridesmaids before we headed out for the evening.


Of course while I was having such a great time, I was also missing my sweet little girl too.  Pat took her up to his parents for the weekend and sent me lots of pictures texts so I could still see her.  We even did FaceTime on Saturday evening which I think ended up being just as good for Lucy as it was for me!  Here are some of the pictures I got over the weekend.

Lucy hanging at Grandma Cindy and Grandpa Pat's house
Grandma Cindy played hair salon with Lucy!
After Lucy's bath she ran naked through the house right for her rocking horse!  Funny kid!

While it was great to get away, it was soooo good to come back home.  I tend to get pretty homesick, even if I am just gone for one or two nights.  So I thought some nice comfort food would make my return home even sweeter!  I found this recipe online and thought it was a great and healthy twist on classic mac and cheese.  I followed the directions pretty closely except I swapped out some of the cheese for vegan cheese.  But I'll leave that decision up to you.  I do think the whole dish could very easily be made vegan though.  However, vegan or not, it tasted awesome!  It was so good Pat almost ate the whole pan and Lucy kept asking for "mo?  mo?"  I am sure your family will love it too! 

Spinach and Cheese Quinoa Casserole
Adapted from Eat Live Run


1 1/2 cups dry quinoa
3 cups vegetable broth
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 green onions, chopped
1 tsp minced garlic
5 oz chopped frozen spinach, defrosted and liquid squeezed out
1 tbs olive oil
1 cup milk (or soy or rice milk)
2 cups grated cheddar cheese (or vegan cheese)
1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
1/2 cup grated Mozzarella cheese (or vegan cheese)
1/2 tsp dry mustard 
Salt and Pepper to taste


Preheat oven to 375 degrees

In large saucepan over medium heat add the oil.  Once hot, add chopped bell pepper, scallions and spinach and saute for about four minutes-or until bell pepper starts to soften.  Add the minced garlic and saute for another 30 seconds.

Add dry quinoa to the pot, followed by vegetable broth, dry mustard and salt and pepper to taste.  Bring to boil then reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until all the liquid has been absorbed.  Stir well.

Now add grated cheddar cheese and milk.  Stir to combine and then pour into a greased 9X13" casserole dish.  Sprinkle top with Panko and mozzarella cheese.  Bake for 30 minutes until golden.


 I also made a quick watermelon and feta salad and tossed some asparagus on the grill for a bit.  This meal combined with hugs from my husband and sweet girl were just the welcome home I needed!

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