Today we cleaned and put up our Halloween decorations. Cheerful jack-o-lanterns, Snoopy, orange dressed birds, owls, and pumpkins were the order of the day. I even had some spider-web table runners that I got on clearance last year to decorate the glass doors of the cabinet with the kids’ movies, the mirror beside the front door, and the table that holds many of my indoor plants by the big window.
Tonight we picked the rest of the tomatoes (green ones too!) as well as any other remaining vegetables/fruits that the neighbors didn’t steal. I wish we had good neighbors. Sigh…but we do have a full basket of produce including a couple of cucumbers that happened to grow toward the deck and away from the neighbor’s side where they didn’t find them!
I’ve been thinking a lot about warm weather meals. We had a tasty one last night. I made quinoa with tomatoes, peppers, onions, yellow squash, and garlic smoked sausage. You are more than welcome to leave out the smoked sausage if you are vegan or vegetarian. It would still be very tasty and have protein, as quinoa has its own protein. Here’s the recipe:
4 cups quinoa
1/4 cup safflower oil
3 cups water
1, 28 oz. can petite diced tomatoes and their juice
2 cups sliced or diced yellow squash or zucchini
1 large onion sliced thinly
2 sweet peppers (green, orange, yellow, or red) sliced thinly. I cheated for this and the onions by using a 14 oz. bag of stir fry veggies that were just peppers & onions!
1 lb. garlic smoked sausage or garlic summer sausage (Optional – leave out to make this vegan or vegetarian!)
1 Tbsp. granulated onion
2 tsp. salt (less by 1 tsp. if using sausage)
1 tsp. black pepper
In a large frying pan, add oil and heat until hot. Add quinoa, and stir frequently until oil is absorbed, and quinoa lets off a lovely roasting smell. Add water and cook for ten or so minutes so that it has a chance to start cooking before adding the other ingredients. Add tomatoes, squash, onions, and peppers. Stir in and add sausage (if using) granulated onion, salt, and black pepper. Cook, covered for another twenty minutes or so, stirring occasionally, until quinoa is plumped up. This is a large recipe, so feel free to half it. I will say that it’s a great left-over. It reheats really well, and is one of my favorite lunches!!!