Posted by: Lauren | June 10, 2010…and fun!

Continuing on from yesterday’s post with some deeelicious May recipes to share, as well as pics with friends and family. Let’s start with this vegetarian Mexican meal that was packed with flavor:


Remember yesterday when I posted those Chipotle Black Bean Burritos? I said that you can freeze leftover chipotle chiles to use for other recipes. Well, pull them out, because you need them for this. And, if you happen to have some leftover tortillas, black beans, and plain Greek yogurt or sour cream from those, you’ll need them for this recipe too. But, I assure you, these meals don’t taste anything alike. (Psst I like this one more!)

You’ve seen me replace sour cream with plain Greek yogurt, because it just works so perfectly, you get more protein in your meal, and you don’t have to buy both sour cream and yogurt to eat, so it makes grocery shopping a little easier.

Recipe slightly adapted from here

Baked Black Bean Burritos

  • 4 (8-inch) flour or whole wheat tortillas
  • 1/2 cup plain 2% Greek yogurt
  • 1 (7 oz.) can chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 1 (15 oz.) can black beans, drained & rinsed
  • 1 cup frozen whole kernel corn, defrosted
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used a Mexican blend)

1.Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Remove one to two chiles from can (depending on if you like mild or medium spice). I chopped mine with kitchen shears right into a medium bowl. Then, add 1/2 cup Greek yogurt, stir, and allow to sit and let flavors mingle for a few minutes. Then add corn, stir.

2.After draining and rinsing your beans, smash about half of the can with a fork. Then add whole and smashed beans to the sour cream mixture.

3.Fill each tortilla with a quarter of the sour cream mixture. Fold up tortilla and place seam side down into a greased 9×9 or 8×8 baking dish. Cover tortillas with salsa and sprinkle with cheese.

4.Cover and bake at 350 for twenty minutes or until heated.

Serve that with this AMAZING salad!


Spinach Avocado Salad (adapted from here)

  • 3  tablespoons  fresh lime juice
  • 1  tablespoon  olive oil
  • 1  tablespoon  chopped fresh cilantro
  • 1  teaspoon  sugar
  • 1/4  teaspoon  ground cumin
  • 1/4  teaspoon  sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/8  teaspoon  black pepper
  • 1  Hass avocado, peeled, pitted and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery or red onion (I used celery)
  • 11  ounces  baby spinach

1.Whisk lime juice, olive oil, cilantro, sugar, cumin, salt, and pepper in large serving bowl. Stir in avocado and celery (you could also use red onion). Lay spinach on top and refrigerate until ready to eat, up to two hours, then toss together before serving.

This salad had so much flavor and wonderful textures with the crunchy celery and smooth and creamy avocado! You must try this!

My parents went to St. Louis and brought me back some sweet potato pasta from this pasta company called “Pappardelle’s” at the farmer’s market. It included a recipe that I knew I had to try. Oh, it did not disappoint.


Who better to make it for than the bearer of this pasta gift? So some of the fam came together at Mom and Dad’s after my momma had surgery on her eyeballs. While Katie whipped up the salad, Joe and I took care of the pasta.

Oh, and you may be looking at that picture thinking what a tiny serving of pasta and that I just have so much self control. Wrong. This stuff was RICH. Couldn’t even finish that much! We’ll get to that.

               IMG_2674 IMG_2673 

And here’s Patch Adams

IMG_2672Aww! In all seriousness, we are so grateful that both of her surgeries went so well (cataracts) and now my mom has the added benefit of seeing without glasses or contacts! (Except up close.) Here is the gorgeous woman without a patch and paparazzi-like face hiding:

607595850_lauren and joe - 345

I love them.

So the pasta…


That would be about 1/2 cup of walnuts, roasting in some butter and garlic.

Sweet Potato Pappardelle con Salsa di Noci (salsa wha?)

  • 1 lb. pappardelle pasta (if you can get to St. Louis and get their sweet potato version, that’s great, otherwise, use just plain pappardelle-which has a nice wide shape)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 7 oz. shelled walnuts, finely chopped. (I used about 1/2 cup)
  • 4 Tablespoons butter
  • 7 oz. marsacpone or cream cheese (I used cream cheese, because it’s cheaper!)
  • 3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese (I used Romano)

1.Melt butter in skillet and saute garlic until it is golden brown. Add walnuts, stir for 3 minutes and remove pan from heat.

2.Meanwhile, cook pasta in rapidly boiling salted water until al dente (8-10 minutes).

3.While pasta is cooking, add the cream cheese to the walnut mixture and heat gently throughout, stirring occasionally.

4.Drain the pasta (do not rinse), toss in the grated cheese and sauce, stir and serve at once.

Serves 6.

So that was butter, cheese, more cheese, walnuts, and pasta. CAN YOU GO WRONG?!

Like I said, it was so rich and although very delicious, small servings are where it’s at.

Look what else I found from May! Our Lost party! Katie did it up right, with signs and giant cookies. Plus, Katie C. and Kody brought Noodles! Their new puppy who we love.

IMG_2667 IMG_2662 IMG_2664 IMG_2665

Don’t you love the cookie?! Something happened behind the “S” but it didn’t matter. We loved it! That would be a Dharma sign on the fridge in case you were wondering.

More fun times with friends and their dogs! An amazing dinner at Renee and Greg’s. I provided the dessert, Renee provided the chicken, roasted veggies, Caesar salad, and rolls. Yum!

IMG_2490 IMG_2491 IMG_2492 IMG_2493 IMG_2496 Louie! 


Pan-Seared Scallops with Bacon and Spinach (recipe found here from Cooking Light)

I didn’t make any changes to the recipe, so I won’t share it here, but I think I messed it up. Joe liked it, but I think I burnt the onions or garlic or something, because it tasted not quite right to me. Served with some Trader Joe’s basmati rice. It photographs well, though!

Let’s throw some gardening in the mix:

IMG_2649 IMG_2656 IMG_2657 IMG_2658 IMG_2659 IMG_2646 Herbs!


One of my favorite snacks/healthy desserts: 2% Greek yogurt, raspberries, drizzle of Trader Joe’s chocolate syrup (no high fructose corn syrup).

I still can’t get over the organic raspberries at Caputo’s for $1.19. They advertised as $2, but never rang up for that much! I went back and bought 8 more. Yes. Eight. I shared some though, and plan to freeze some. Here’s a look:


See, but now I’m getting ahead of myself, because this is from June. So more June fun to follow! This was a loooooong post!

Any fun Lost stories to tell? Or delicious summer produce you’re loving right now? Recipes you think I should make in June?

“And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from His love.” Romans 8:38





  1. I wish I had more time to cook! Everything you make looks SO delicious!

  2. Hey Nichole! Some of these recipes come together in minutes! Like the black bean burrito only took maybe 10 minutes to assemble, then bake. Some others are definitely more time-intensive, but I should make a spot under my recipe tabs for super fast dinners.

  3. I am so hungrey now, wish I had some of your food to eat!

  4. You’re so cute, Mom.

  5. Lauren! I love your recipes they all look fantastic! And I love seeing pix of people I love and miss-especially renee…:( Cant WAIT to try the spinach/avocado salad!

    Produce I’m loving right now is WATERMELON! Can’t get enough it’s so great right now! You should definitely try the coconut chicken on my blog right now. Toss it over some spinach leaves and add some feta and balsamic vinigarette…yummers…:)

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