Chickpea Shakshuka

Hey there! I have a really fun and awesome recipe for you guys today! Even though you may not have heard of it, Shakshuka is SO GOOD. It’s a middle eastern dish that combines a warming tomato stew with poached eggs, and is the perfect addition to your breakfast spread. I added some chickpeas to mine for some extra protein and fibre. This recipe is super easy to follow and comes together in less than an hour, because the faster this deliciousness gets into your mouth, the better.

I’ve seen shakshuka on a bunch of cooking shows and featured in the occasional Pinterest post, so I thought, why not try it out? I began by frying up onions and garlic. What a shocker! I find it interesting how so many different cultures use garlic and onions in their food. Making tomato sauce? Garlic and onions. Curry? Garlic and onions. Shakshuka? GARLIC AND ONIONS BABY. I am not complaining because the smell of frying onions is out of this world. After I got that aromatic veg all sauteed up, I threw in some amazing spices, tomatoes, tomato paste, chickpeas, and lots of salt and pepper. Those ingredients all get to know each other very well in the pan while you continue on with your morning routine. I did some stretching:)

Personally, I am an egg lover, and so this is next part was my favourite. After stirring up the stew, I cracked four eggs DIRECTLY into there, brought it to a nice heavy simmer, covered, and let them poach. This is a critical moment because you want that yolk to be nice and runny. I appreciate a good hard boiled egg, but this is not the time. So set your timers because it will be very disappointing is you overcook these. I will personally be disappointed in you.

Once those eggs are done, you’re done! Step back! That’s all! I just took these off the heat, removed the lid so that the eggs don’t keep steaming, and I want to say that I dug in right then and there but no, I took the whole pan down to the fridge in our basement to preserve it for when the lighting was better, so I could take a good picture. Do you see the sacrifices that I make for you guys? Annnnnyways, when I finally got around to eating this, I scooped myself a big bowl, warmed it up, and topped it with fresh chives, parsley flakes, and avocado because you’ve gotta go big or go home. And let me tell you, this is AMAZING. It’s so full of flavour from all those spices, and then the chickpeas give you some texture, and that runny yolk is just perfection. This is such a great fall/winter breakfast, because it’s so cozy! Traditionally it is a breakfast dish, but I would be very happy to eat this any time of day.

Make sure that you try this out! I can’t wait to make it again for my family on a weekend.

Chickpea Shakshuka

Serves: 2-4

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium sized white onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon (trust me)
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp red chilli flakes
  • 2 tsp parsley flakes (plus more for garnish)
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 can of tomato paste
  • 1 can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 4 eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Chopped chives, for garnish (optional)
  • 1 avocado for serving, sliced (optional)

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a large, deep pan or skillet. Add in the onions and cook for around 4 minutes, until they’re just translucent. Next add in the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes.
  2. Add the all of the spices and herbs to the pan and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes, until they’re somewhat browned and nice and fragrant.
  3. Dump the tomatoes, tomato paste, and paprika into the pan. Season generously with salt and pepper, give everything a good stir, then lower the heat to a slow simmer. Cover the pan and let cook for 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the lid from the pan, stir everything again and make sure the stew is level across the top. Crack the 4 eggs directly into the pan, in a kind of square pattern so that they’re not too close to each other. Bring the stew back up to a faster simmer, cover again, and let the eggs poach for EXACTLY 5 minutes.
  5. Remove then pan from the heat and take the lid off. serve immediately and garnish with more parsley flakes, chopped chives, or avocado.
  6. Enjoy!

Hope you guys love this recipe! It’s one of my faves. Come back on Friday for my December Reading List!

Yours Truly,

Olivia:))

Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Anyone craving pasta? Stupid question, I know. Pasta is just one of those comforting and delicious things that I’m down for anytime🙌 Today we’re both health-ifying and fall-ifying some spaghetti by using butternut squash, roasted garlic, and juicy tomatoes. Yes please!

The butternut squash sauce for these noodles is INSANELY easy and INSANELY good. First, you oven roast some squash (I used frozen squash chunks for extra convenience), a tomato, and garlic. Then all of that goodness is blended with herbs that remind me of fall- rosemary, thyme, and sage, and lots of salt and pepper. This makes a sauce so with an amazing flavour and an even more amazing colour😍😍 Yum!

I used some nice whole wheat pasta as a base for my sauce, because it’s a great way to get more nutrients in👌 I also love lentil or chickpea noodles, which have lots of protein! Even if you’re using regular pasta, this is still a delicious and healthy meal. We need carbs people! They give us energy so we can be our amazing selves😉 Also, they’re really tasty. So it’s a win-win!

Hope you enjoy this fall pasta dish! I know it’s going to be on repeat at my house all season long🥰

Butternut Squash Spaghetti

Serves: 2

Total Time: 35 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 servings of whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups frozen butternut squash chunks, or fresh butternut squash cut into centimetre cubes.
  • 1 large tomato, cut in half
  • 5 cloves of garlic, in the skins
  • 1/4 tsp ground sage
  • 1/4 tsp ground thyme
  • 1/2 tsp dried rosemary
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Add the tomato and the butternut squash onto a parchment lined baking sheet, and toss with the olive oil and some salt and pepper. Wrap the garlic cloves in tinfoil to create a little packet, and place that on the pan as well. Throw it in the oven and roast for 25-30 minutes, until the squash and the tomato are soft.
  3. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente, about 8-10 minutes. Set aside.
  4. Once the veggies are done roasting, toss them into a blender or food processor with the thyme, rosemary, sage, and some salt and pepper. Remove the garlic cloves from their skins and add them as well. Blend until a smooth sauce forms.
  5. Add the sauce to the pasta and coat the noodles evenly. Serve warm and enjoy!

Have a great weekend everyone!!

Yours Truly,

MyDayIsBooked:)

Veggie Fried Quinoa

I ate the whole pan of this fried quinoa. It’s seriously so good because of all of the flavour and all of the veggies. I don’t know, there’s just something about a big plate of sauteed veggies, beans and quinoa that’s just so comforting and simple and homey. And it’s true that it doesn’t get much simpler than this- basically all you need to do is toss some stuff around in a pan, add a bit of other stuff, and you get delicious stuff.

In the ingredients list, I’m going to put down all the veg as “roughly chopped”, because I didn’t put a whole lot of effort into making it look nice. It’s all about flavour and ease here, people. This dish is also a great fridge cleaner. You know, when you have those week old carrots, that half an onion in a ziploc bag, and some tomatoes that are looking just the teeniest bit questionable. In my case, I also had some black beans in a tupperware container. Usually I have some leftover quinoa lying around, but I didn’t so I made some right before. But yeah, just toss all of these forgotten but beautiful things into a pan with some olive oil, then add your flavour boosters. Namely soy sauce, garlic, pepper, and maple syrup. Yes, I put maple syrup in a take on fried rice. Trust me, it works.

Since, if you’re a speedy chef, you could whip this up in about 7.5 minutes, this Veggie Fried Quinoa could be made in the morning before school, or as a really quick dinner. I would say a more accurate timeline for making this quinoa would be about 10-15 minutes, which is still pretty fast. Just make sure you have your quinoa cooked before hand, cause that’s really a game changer. If you don’t need it to be vegan, you could add some egg or chicken for some extra protein. However or whenever you make it, this Veggie Fried Quinoa is definitely a winner because of it’s quick, easy, and really tasty. Hope you enjoy!!

Veggie Fried Quinoa

Serves: 2 (or 1 really hungry person aka me;)

Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup cooked quinoa
  • 1/2 a tomato, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 a red onion, roughly diced
  • 1 large carrot, roughly chopped
  • about 1/4 cup of sliced mushrooms
  • 2/3 cup black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1/2 tsp maple syrup
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • Pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pan over medium heat. Add in the tomatoes, onions, carrots, black beans and mushrooms and cook for about 3 minutes, until starting to get soft.
  2. Add the quinoa to the pan and stir, continuing to cook for another 5 minutes, until most of the water from the veggies has evaporated.
  3. Next, add the soy sauce, garlic, pepper, and maple syrup, and stir to combine. Cook for a few more minutes, allowing the carrots to become tender.
  4. Remove from the heat and enjoy!

One of my favourite quick and easy recipes:) I’ll see you guys on Friday!!

Yours Truly,

Olivia:))

Easy Tofu Scramble

‘Sup people? I’ve been meaning to make a tofu scramble for a while, and this afternoon I finally got down to it. I still love a good old egg scramble, don’t get me wrong. But if you want something plant-based, tofu is a great egg substitute. This Easy Tofu Scramble is awesome in wraps or bowls, on toast, or by itself. It’s also perfect for every time of day- breakfast, lunch or dinner!

Tofu is actually really easy to cook, and in this recipe I just drained it and proceeded to fry it up. But if you’re a first time tofu eater and want to know a little more about it, you can check out my post Soy Marinated Tofu, where I explain what it is and share another awesome recipe as well. To liven up this scramble a bit, I added some tomatoes and green onions, as well as paprika and garlic powder. Tofu can be a bit bland, so you want to make sure you add a lot of flavour.

Lastly, have lots of fun customising this scramble! If you want to add more veggies and different spices feel free to. Tofu is such a great blank canvas! Enjoy this recipe;))

Easy Tofu Scramble

Serves: 1

Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil
  • 85g of Extra Firm Tofu
  • 1/2 a tomato, diced
  • 1 green onion or chive, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a pan over medium heat. Add in the tomato, green onion, and tofu.
  2. Break up the tofu with a wooden spoon, until it resembles scrambled eggs. Cook for about a minute.
  3. Add in the garlic powder. paprika, salt and pepper and cook for additional two minutes, stirring often.
  4. Remove from the heat and enjoy!

Hope you like this recipe! Have a great weekend;)

Yours Truly,

Olivia

Zucchini and Olive Pasta Bake

It’s SUMMA TIME and there’s an abundance of zucchini! Zucchini is delicious fried, roasted, in a fritter, and in salad, but today we’re using it in a Pasta Bake. Our guest star is the olive, which adds so much dang flavour into the sauce. If you’re not a fan of olives you can leave them out, but you don’t know what you’re missing. Don’t be a party pooper and just throw them in there!

We’re using my fave kitchen tool again- the amazing veggie peeler- to create little zucchini rolls for the bake.

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The pasta that I used was Go Go Quinoa brand macaroni, and it usually takes about 4 minutes on the stove top to cook. I baked it in the oven for 10 minutes, and it was just slightly past al dente. So if you’re using just regular wheat macaroni or small shells (you don’t want to go any bigger with your pasta selection) that normally take 7-9 minutes to cook in boiling water, I bake them for 10-15 minutes for an al dente texture. My recipe below doesn’t account for that, so just keep in mind what kind of pasta you’re using when baking this bake.

And that concludes my Ted Talk about how great this pasta bake is! DEFINITELY try it out and let me know what you think because it is now officially one of my favourite recipes. Here it is!

Zucchini and Olive Pasta Bake

Serves: 3-4

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 large zucchini
  • 1/2 a red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1 can of red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 200 ml can of sliced black olives, drained and rinsed
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp red chilli flakes
  • 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup Go Go Quinoa Macaroni **see note above if using a different pasta**
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add in the sliced onions and cook until translucent, about 6 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for another 2 minutes, then add the beans, olives, tomatoes, basil, oregano, balsamic vinegar, chilli flakes, and some salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and then turn the heat to low and cook for 25 minutes.
  2. While the sauce is simmering, use the veggie peeler to create as many zucchini ribbons as you can. The centre part of the zucchini, where the seeds are, won’t make nice ribbons, so you can dice it up at toss it in the sauce, making sure it has at least 10 minutes to cook in there.
  3. Add the macaroni into a small glass loaf pan or baking dish. Roll up each zucchini ribbon into a little rosette and place evenly spaced out in the pasta, like this:
  4. Once the sauce is done simmering, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Add the 1/2 cup of water to the sauce and bring it to a hard simmer before removing it from the heat. Scoop enough of it into the baking dish so that the pasta and zucchini are fully covered, about 2-3 cups of sauce. You may have some sauce leftover that you can eat with the pasta after it’s baked or save for later.
  5. Cover the glass dish with foil (shiny side down) and bake for about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and enjoy!

Hope you like this pasta dish! See you Wednesday;))

Yours Truly,

Olivia;)