Thursday, May 05, 2011

¡Ven Conmigo! ¡Te Mostraré las Maravillas de la Galaxia, y Juntos Lucharemos Contra el Despiadado Zurg!

My romance with minimalism has lead me to spend a lot of time thinking about my kitchen; the stuff the occupies it, how often I am in it, the time I spend preparing meals and what I get out of it.

I think I spend a lot of time cooking. My average dinner takes about an hour of hands-on work, and several hours of "let dough rest" or "soak beans" or "allow to rise" or "marinate" and such. I usually start making dinner around noon. Is it worth it? I love to cook, but I do I love it that much?

I do love the results: delicious, healthy meals and a feeling of a job well done. But can I get those same results with less effort? With less time?

I decided to try: I've been browsing the Internet for vegetarian crock-pot recipes and asking friends for their easiest vegetarian recipe. I've made a list of "half an hour or less" meals and started thinking about freezing meals (something I have never done before. I don't even know how). I also asked a few close friends if they wanted to try a dinner swap once a month.

Tonight was the first attempt at a dinner swap. Instead of just exchanging a dinner, we decided that we wanted the social aspect as well; we'll have them over for dinner and the next week they'll have us over for dinner. Tonight they came over to our house. Since it also happened to be Cinco De Mayo, I decided to try something Mexican.

My wonderful grandmother recently gifted me tortilla bowl pans: just place your tortilla in the bowl and bake for a few minutes. I decided to make those:
They turned out great! I filled our taco bowls with sauteed onions and green peppers, black and pinto beans, brown rice, taco TVP (YUM!) fresh lettuce, fresh tomatoes, fresh avocados, and topped with Greek yogurt (my new substitute for sour cream. I can't taste a difference so it works great) and cilantro dressing.
Made-from-scratch virgin margaritas:
and for dessert, my best tres leche cake yet with whipping cream and fresh organic strawberries.

So far so good.


  1. Mmm . . . that looks good. I'm visiting my parents and my mom had planned a graduation party for me already and then realized that it was also Cinco de Mayo, so we ended up having Chinese food and a pinata. =)

  2. Looks awesome! And I can vouge for the cake...SOOOOO good. I think that dinner swap sounds awesome. Id like in on it too I think, for the social aspect. I also have a couple new Taste of Home magazines, one specifically for crock pot recipes. Next time you are over you must have a look. Ive thought of you plenty while browsing them. Maybe we need to start our Sunday breakfast tradition again, Im jealous! :)

  3. I love the Chinese food and a pinata. That sounds like the way I'd do things. Hey, K-la, do you want my lasagna recipe? It's best in a dutch oven but works well in a pan too. I've been making it vegetarian for years.

  4. Lynn, Yes!! I would love your recipe! Lia, please tell me there were fortune cookies inside the piniata.


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