Creamy Wild Rice Soup … a rich, delicious addition to your Thanksgiving or seasonal table!
I was about to run out the door yesterday, when I stopped to check the weather. It was in the 50’s so I grabbed my jacket and headed out.
Fall weather is finally here, and I’m so happy about it! I love this time of year, when a light jacket and sweater are just enough to keep me warm. There’s nothing better than spending these days outside, kicking my boots through colorful leaves (still waiting on those), and enjoying the crisp, sunny weather.
I love returning home after a long day, cheeks rosy from the cold, to a hot bowl of this Kitchen Sink Vegetable Soup, and of course, some hot, crusty Garlic Bread makes it even better!
It’s the first Monday of March, and that means it’s time for another edition of my monthly series, Motivation Monday. For me, healthy living is all about motivation. It’s about finding the motivation to cook instead of order takeout, go for a walk, or skip a second helping. Each Motivation Monday features easy tips and a healthy recipe.
Last month, my focus was on developing a consistent exercise routine, and my goal was to exercise 4 days a week. I’m happy to report that, save a missed workout or two, I did really well. I did lots of barre and pilates type workouts, and I’m looking forward to keeping it up in March and beyond (hopefully, spring weather will show up soon so I can get outside!).
For March, my focus is going to be on getting enough sleep (see my tips below). Plus, I’m sharing a recipe for a delicious and easy Asian Dumpling Soup.
I’m not entirely sure why, but since moving to New York, my sleeping habits have been absolutely terrible. Not only have I been staying up too late, but when I do finally get to bed, I haven’t been able to fall asleep. There’s lots of reasons why – stress, staying up too late, a bad shoulder, etc. – but whatever the reason, I need to make a healthy change.
There are a few things that have helped me sleep better in the past, that I’ll be working into my routine:
- Go to bed at the same time every night. My goal is to have the lights out by midnight on most nights.
- Turn off electronics at least an hour before bedtime. I’ve fallen into the habit of watching TV and/or working on the computer, phone, or iPad right up until bedtime and that needs to stop.
- Get anxiety and stress in check. There is nothing worse than laying down to sleep and having your mind kick in to overdrive. Making a to do list for the next day, writing down the days worries (and then letting them go) , and doing a little stretching before bed all help.
- Wind down before bed with an easy routine. I’m usually really tired before bed, but after washing my face and taking out my contacts, I’m wide awake by the time my head hits the pillow. I’m going to start getting ready for bed a little earlier and then doing a little reading, so I can go directly to bed when I’m tired.
One thing that stresses me out during the week is getting a healthy dinner on the table. I have a bad habit of waiting until the last minute and then resorting to takeout. Eating a fatty takeout meal right late at night is not a great way to prepare for bed!
My Easy Asian Dumpling Soup is the perfect weeknight meal. This recipe is so simple that you can have it on the table in 15 minutes. Plus, it’s super light and healthy.
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 1 carrot
- 1/4 head of cabbage
- 2 green onions
- 1 16-oz. package dumplings (I used Trader Joe’s Thai Vegetable Gyoza)
- 1 tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. sesame oil
- sriracha, to taste
Bring vegetable broth to a boil in a medium saucepan over high heat.
While broth is heating, prepare vegetables. Peel and thinly slice carrot. Chop cabbage. Thinly slice green onions (green part only; reserve white part for another use).
When broth reaches a boil, add carrots and cabbage. Return to boil and then reduce to a simmer. Cook until vegetables are tender, about 5 – 10 minutes. Add soy sauce, sesame oil, and sriracha. Stir well. Season with additional soy sauce, if necessary.
To serve, place dumplings in a large soup bowl. Ladle soup over top and sprinkle with green onions. Enjoy!
P.S. Read my other Motivation Monday posts.
I’m linking up with Much Ado About Monday, Plucky’s Second Thoughts, Give Me the Goods Monday, Home Stories A to Z’s Tutorials & Tips, Time to Sparkle, The Scoop, Tuesday’s Treasures, Ginger Jamboree, Awesome Things Tuesday, Sugar Bee Crafts’ Take-A-Look Tuesday, Tasty Tuesdays, The Makers, VMG206’s Brag About It, The Inspiration Exchange, Wine’d Down Wednesday, The Wednesday Roundup, Lovely Ladies Linky, Make Bake Create, SNAP! Show + Tell, Work It Wednesday, Embracing Change’s Creative Inspirations, Lamberts Lately’s Create It Thursday, Live Laugh Rowe’s Live Laugh Linky, Sweet Bella Roos’ Pin It Thursday, Link’n Blogs, Inspiration Gallery Link Party, Craft Frenzy Friday, Be.You.Tiful Link Party, Inspire Me Please, Nancherrow’s Fridays Unfolded, The Shabby Nest’s Frugal Friday, Pinworthy Projects Party, The Party Bunch, Link Party Palooza, Best of the Weekend, Cheerios & Lattes’ Saturday Show & Tell, Pieced Pastimes’ Saturday Sparks, Sewlicious Home Decor, Get Schooled Saturday, Saturday Night Fever, Showstopper Saturday, Flamingo Toes’ Think Pink Sunday, Link It or Lump It, DIY Showoff’s That DIY Party, Sunday Best Showcase, Inspiration Monday, and Craft-O-Maniac Monday.
New York has had the craziest weather lately. In the space of a week, there’s been rain (twice), a snow storm, bitter cold, and even a heat wave (didn’t even need my winter coat yesterday).
It’s started cooling off again, and I’m declaring it soup weather! Is there anything better than a hot bowl of soup on a cold night? I don’t think so.
I love all kinds of soups, but this vegetable soup with chickpeas and kale is one of my favorites. It’s super healthy, easy to make, and doesn’t require a lot of crazy ingredients. The crunchy garlic toasts are the perfect accompaniment. I think you’ll love it, too!
Serves 4 – 6
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 2 medium carrots, sliced
- 2 celery stalks, sliced
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp. dried basil
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 6 cups vegetable broth
- 14.5-oz. can fire roasted diced tomatoes, drained
- 15-oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 5-oz. package baby kale (or spinach)
- salt and pepper
- fresh basil leaves, optional
- 1 baguette
- olive oil
- 1 large garlic clove
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large soup pot or dutch oven. Add onions, celery, and carrots and cook until slightly softened.
Add garlic, red pepper flakes, garlic, basil, and oregano. Season with a little salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant.
While soup simmers, prepare garlic toasts. Using a serrated knife, cut baguette on the diagonal into 1/4-inch thick slices.
Remove from oven. When toasts are cool enough to handle, slice garlic clove in half and rub cut side over toasts. Set toasts aside.
I’m linking up with Huckleberry Love’s Much Ado About Monday, Give Me the Goods Monday, Home Stories A to Z’s Tutorials & Tips, A Stroll Through Life’s Inspire Me Tuesday, Time to Sparkle, The Scoop, My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia’s Tuesdays Treasures, Sugar Bee Crafts’ Take-A-Look Tuesday, Healthy Tip & Tricks Tuesday, Tasty Tuesdays, VMG206’s Brag About It, The Inspiration Exchange, Wine’d Down Wednesday, The Wednesday Roundup, Make Bake Create, Your Whims Wednesday, SNAP! Show + Tell, Lovely Ladies Linky, Work It Wednesday, 52 Mantels’ Thursdays Are Your Days, Lamberts Lately’s Create It Thursday, Live Laugh Rowe’s Live Laugh Linky, Sweet Bella Roos’ Pin It Thursday, Link’n Blogs, Embracing Change’s Creative Inspirations, Craft Frenzy Friday, Awesome Things Tuesday, Pinworthy Projects Party, Nancherrow’s Friday’s Unfolded, The Shabby Nest’s Frugal Friday, The Stitchin’ Mommy’s Get Crafty Friday, Link Party Palooza, Cheerios and Lattes’ Saturday Show & Tell, Live Love Create’s Craft Create & Inspire, Pieced Pastimes Saturday Sparks, Sewlicious Home Decor, Too Much Time on My Hand’s Get Schooled Saturday, Super Saturday Show & Tell, Show Stopper Saturday, Best of the Weekend, Saturday Night Fever, Flamingo Toes’ Think Pink Sunday, Suburbs Mama’s Sunday Linky, Twigg Studios’ Sunday Show Off, Link It or Lump It, and Craft-O-Maniac Monday.