Ethiopian spiced coconut-tofu

When I was a young girl, I used to pray nightly for the children in Ethiopia

Truth is…. I had no idea where Ethiopia was, nor why I prayed for them.. But somewhere along the line I heard that they needed help and so each and every night right before I’d fall asleep, I’d ask God to do so. ( I also prayed for the children in Cambodia and the hostages in Iran — I remember Easter morning watching the tv waiting for my grandparents to arrive ,watching some of the hostages being released… And crying thinking that prayers are sometimes answered)

Ok… I’ve never told anyone that story. And yet I just shared it with the world 🙂

I haven’t thought of Ethiopia in a very long time.. Then last week , I bought an ‘Ethiopian ‘ blend coffee..

And I’ve seen Ethiopian restaurants ( not that I’ve tried any..) must-change-this

And when I was in Denverat a yummy sandwich shop (ironically where I bumped into Scott with his co-workers) I saw an Ethiopian spice blend .. And despite the 10 dollar price tag.. I bought it.

I’m-so-glad-that-I-did

Everyone say hi to my blankie… I’m writing this 38,000 ft in the air 🙂

It is a mixture of
Fenugreek
Cardamom
Cloves
Paprika
Cinnamon
Cayenne pepper
Chili powder

Near as I can tell it was equal parts of everything except for them paprika and chili powder. Those packets had a little more than twice as much. (Maybe 2 teaspoons of everything and a tablespoon of the paprika and chili powder

I simply mixed it all together then stored it in a jar .

So while I was putting my laundry away yesterday ( for the first time in 2 months— like tell me you’ve never done that)

I got hungry . And I remembered that I wanted to try this. And I remembered that I had half a block of pressed tofu to use . And I walked away from the laundry. And into the kitchen

Which by the way is why my laundry never gets put away… I can’t stay out of the kitchen.. *le sigh*

And in less than 10 minutes I had the MOST delicious little lunch.

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Ethiopian spiced coconut tofu

1 tablespoon spice mix

1/2 block pressed tofu ( I use a tofu press. If you eat tofu ..it’s the best investment you can make.. You’ll pay for it in saved paper towel money in under a month;)

1 tablespoon coconut oil ( this stuff rocks! It should be on your shopping list)

1/4 red onion, chopped

About 1/3-1/2 cup light coconut milk ( I like trader joes the best)

1/4 bunch cilantro , rinsed and chopped ** optional — see note below

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium high heat. Meanwhile cut tofu into cubes and toss it with spice mixture . Add to heated oil and let tofu crisp and get a light crust .. Turning occasionally . Add chopped onion and stir . Add 1/3 cup of coconut milk, and scrape up the bits from the pan

Once coconut milk is heated , stir in cilantro, transfer to serving dish and squeeze a wedge of lime on top.

You can thank me later …

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If you don’t eat tofu.. I’m sure this would be good with boneless chicken breast.. Just make sure your internal temp of the chicken ta-tas is 165 degrees before eating 🙂

** cilantro note… I’ve mentioned this before but I’m throwing it out there again.. Some folks don’t like cilantro .. They think it tastes like soap. And guess what? To them it DOES! It’s a chemical In Their bodies ( that is hereditary ) that makes cilantro taste like soap. ( or cat pee as a friend once told me, but I’m pretty sure she never tasted cat pee so I’m going with the soap 🙂

If you are one of these people.. Then I am sorry. Because cilantro is truly a wonderful herb.. But I ‘get’ it… Just sub out fresh parsley instead ( if you don’t like parsley, then I can’t help you today .. Check back tomorrow 🙂

And I just read the spice package and it was 7.99 not 9.99 ..

Don’t have those spices on hand? No worries.. I’ve got your back .. Did you know that in most health food stores you there is a section that you can buy herbs in bulk ??? It’s true! You can buy just a teaspoon of something by putting it in a Baggie with the code on the box:). It’s soo much cheaper than buying a whole bottle And you won’t end up with jars of unused spices..(which go bad fairly quickly. If you’ve had it for over a year.. There is dust mixed in.. Yuck. Unless of course you like dusty- soup )

Maybe I’ll try that some time..

Eh… Maybe not.

Honestly… as I end this post it has me thinking about how long it has been since I recited those particular prayers nightly.. life kind of happened and my prayers started to become more personal.. still are in fact .. when i think back to my innocence and how big my heart was despite how little I was.. it kind of makes me smile :).

and makes me want to shout out a silent prayer to the whole wide world 🙂

Gotta run… Snack time :).

(What us it about getting so excited for snack time on an airplane????)

quick and easy sweet & sour chicken

It’s  Monday.   need I say more? I’ve spent the day recovering the house from ‘weekend house’.. how do 4 people make such a mess?

Oh yeah.. because I leave a trail everywhere that I go….. oopsie  I should work on that.

It’s just the two girls for dinner tonight ( that I know of, I never really know who will walk through that doors with a pillow in hand and an overnight bag 😉 )

They are also at an away soccer game which means that I have no idea what time they will get home.

I also know that they will be starving!

One of my favorite ways to cook is to take inventory of what I have and come up with an idea.

I have cooked chicken

I have cooked rice ( if I didn’t that would be easy enough to do )

I have a can of mandarin oranges

I have jalapeno in the garden. And a spicy red pepper 😉

I have a small red onion…

Ii’m going to make sweet and sour chicken!

I’m basing it loosely off of THIS recipe…. but I dont; want to use orange food coloring or tons of oil… so this is what I’m thinking….

1~ dice the chicken ..

2~Add a small amount of oil to a saucepan. Sautee onion and peppers just until translucent.

* yes, I buy my vinegar in gallons… I use it to make hom made cleaning solutions 🙂  and just pretend that I had the sugar in this pic….*

3~ To the veggies add

juice from the oranges

3/4 cup sugar

1 1/2 cups water

3/4 cup vinegar ( regular old white)

bring to a boil, then reduce heat.

4~ Mix 1/2 cup cornstarch with 1/2 cup COLD water. Stir into sauce & keep stirring until thickened. Season with salt and pepper.


  5~Stir in cooked chicken breast, and drained mandarin   oranges and frozen peas. ( 1/2  cup or so…?)   heat up rice & serve on top !

I also have a few Trader Joe’s potstickers in the freezer, so I’ll cook them up as well.

I love cleaning out the freezer 🙂

If you don’t have cooked chicken, then cube up chicken breast and season with salt & pepper, saute…. then continue.

Or make them the way the original recipe calls. But I think it sounds kinda heavy….

fast forward….. they are home and dinner has been served 🙂

and the girls LOVED this recipe! I’ll certainly be making this for them again… The chicken that I used was actually from a chicken that I cooked a bit back & froze the leftovers.. Next time I make chicken I will cook extra and freeze it again so that I can throw this together on another weeknight 🙂

Laundry Tree has all of the winners addresses, I will let you know as soon as they ship ( they will be coming directly form the company 😉

happy Monday evening, friends!  ….  I’ll be watching the new fall TV line up and working on finishing up the next give away ….

hint.. it’s home made AND I’ll include a tutorial for those who want to be all crafty 🙂

 

psst… a few of you have asked me about the cleanse…  I have added a ‘page’ over to the right with a complete recap of my last summer and info on what I am currently doing.. I will update by editting in nightly 🙂   smooches

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