Spring Pasta Salad

Today really felt like SPRING! So amazing outside!!!!! While we were playing outside I got the idea to make a pasta salad! It just felt right, so seasonal and perfect! LOVE!
I normally make things on a large scale but this was just for my kids’ lunch and husbands’ dinner 😉 So if you want to make this bigger, double or triple the recipe! This salad will taste great right away but also will get more tastier as the flavors get to mingle in the fridge! Yum!

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Spring Pasta Salad

1/2 a box of pasta (1/2 pound) elbow or other
1 cup of cherry tomatoes, chopped
1 cup bell peppers, diced
1/2 a cucumber, diced
1/2 a can of black olives, quartered
1/2 a can of chickpeas
1/2 an avocado, chopped
1/8-1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/8-1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
salt & pepper, to taste

1. Bring water to boil and cook pasta according to the pox.
2. While pasta is cooking prep and chop all the veggies and place in a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients and give a good stir.
3. Once the pasta is cooked, drain and cool for a few minutes. Then add to the bowl and stir to incorporate.
4. Chill further and enjoy!

And here it is as lunch for my littles 🙂 Fun!!!

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Freezer Cooking & Slow Cooker Indian Spiced Chickpea Quinoa Stew

Here is a super simple deelish slow cooker meal! We LOVE a great one-pot meal! I like Kathy’s suggestions to add any veggies you have on hand or use yellow lentils instead of red, potato in place of turnip and even carrots.

A while ago I spent a day doing a Huge Freezer Cook aka cooking/assembling meals and freezing then for later use! Brilliant idea but makes for one super crazy cooking day plus another whole afternoon to shop! But I made 26 meals to freeze!! Some meals required cooking and storing in tins to be later defrosted and cooked or reheated. Some meals, like this one, I cut and prepped all the ingredients/spices and put in a food saver bag so it was ready to go in the slow-cooker 🙂 We Love having a freezer full of meals for when we need a prepared meal and don’t feel like or have time for cooking!

This was PERFECT after we came home from vacation recently. We woke up in the morning and I just tossed the bag of ingredients & the 4 cups of water, in the slow-cooker and 8.5 hours later we had a wonderful & hot dinner. Which after coming back to the cold, snowy NY from hot and sunny Mexico was much needed to warm us up! Plus always so nice when the kids love the meal you prepared! Yeah!

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Slow Cooker Indian Spiced Chickpea Quinoa Stew
Recipe from Kathy Hester at healthyslowcooking.com 
serves 4 to 6

  • 4 to 5 cups water
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (or 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen)
  • 1 can chickpeas, rinsed (or 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 cup red lentils
  • 1/2 cup quinoa, rinsed
  • 1 cup peeled turnip, chopped
  • 1 cup sweet potato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup celery, chopped (about 1 stalk)
  • 1 tablespoon not-chicken bouillon
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 teaspoons garam masala
  • salt, to taste

Put everything in the slow cooker and cook on low 6 to 9 hours. Taste, re-season if needed (you may not even need the salt if your bouillon is salty.)

* If you plan to prep & freeze for another time, add the water at the time of cooking.

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