So Easy

I always have left over rice in the fridge. Always. So when I was thumbing through Ellie’s So Easy I found this one that uses FOUR cups of left over rice. FOUR CUPS!! Great! I needed to use up all of it!

JKO and I are the ethnic food eaters in the house. Hubs – not so much. But even knowing that I decided to make the full recipe and followed it exactly. Well, 98% exactly. I used white Basmati rice rather than Brown. It is what I had. Other than that – cabbage, sesame seeds, shrimp, green onions, and ginger make up the ingredients along with the various flavors in the soy sauce and sesame oil.

It wasn’t bad. I thought it needed more flavor and it was a little dry. But not bad.

You can find the recipe on page 158 of So Easy or on FoodTV.

Check out what the other Craving Ellie in my Belly members made this week.

Would you believe I had never made rice pudding. Okay, that’s not COMPLETELY true.
I have to confess I did make try to make some rice pudding in November, 2008, for TWD but it was such a dismal failure I don’t even count it!!
My Dad used to love it. He’s from the North and according to him it is a Northern Dish. I suppose it is the equivalent of our bread pudding here in the Deep South. So, I quess since I am a Southern Gal I just had never thought of making it. Until I came across Ellie’s recipe for Pumpkin Rice Pudding. THEN I knew I had to try (again).

Not knowing how much one recipe would make I made the whole recipe and it made TONS of rice pudding. Good thing we liked it.


    2 cups water
    1 cup arborio rice
    3 cups reduced-fat (2%) milk
    1 cup solid-pack pure pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
    3/4 cup honey
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for garnish
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1/3 cup heavy whipping cream, whipped

Preheat the oven to 375F.

Bring the water to a boil in an ovenproof 4-quart saucepan. Stir in the rice and cover. Reduce the heat to low and simmer until the rice is nearly cooked, about 20 minutes.

In a large bowl, whisk together the milk, pumpkin, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and salt.

While the rice is still hot, add the pumpkin mixture to the saucepan and stir well to combine. Cover and transfer to the oven. Bake until the liquid has reduced by about a third and the mixture is foamy and bubbling, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir well to combine all the ingredients.

Transfer to a large bowl, then cover and chill in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours or overnight. The pudding will keep for up to 4 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon {and I added nutmeg}.

I want to make this again, but next time I will add some extra spices. Just to ramp up the flavor!!

While we don’t all make the same dish every week with CEinMB we do all post on Friday with our own choice. so visit the other members and see what Ellie recipe they are enjoying this week.

If it’s Thursday it m…. oh wait. We changed to Fridays!!


If it’s Friday it must be Ellie day. Or Craving Ellie in My Belly Day.

Yes, it is!!

    Bar-B-Q Anyone?
    1 tablespoon canola oil
    1 large onion, chopped
    3 cloves garlic, minced
    1 (14-ounce) can low-sodium tomato sauce
    1/4 cup tomato paste
    1/2 cup water
    1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
    5 tablespoons molasses
    1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke {really don’t like this so never have it on hand. left it out}
    1 whole rotisserie chicken, skin removed, meat shredded into thin strips (about 4 to 4 1/2 cups)
    6 whole-wheat hamburger rolls
    6 large green lettuce leaves

Heat the oil in a large saute pan over a medium heat. Add the onions and cook until they are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Add tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, vinegar, molasses, pepper and liquid smoke and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 15 minutes. Add chopped chicken, return to a simmer, and cook an additional 10 minutes.

Split rolls. Place a leaf of lettuce on each roll, then pile on 3/4 cup of the chicken mixture onto the roll.

I didn’t have any buns so I used two perfectly toasted pieces of bread. Just as good, if not as healthy.
This was, eh, ok, but it’s not a repeat for us. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t good. Just not to our tastes.

This one was on page 141 of Ellie’s So Easy. (And the recipe was also on FoodTV.

These days the ‘rules’ for CEinMB have changed so we don’t all make the same thing every Friday. Visit us and see what others made for Craving Ellie in My Belly today.

Hi, Ellie!! We’re back! Or I am!! CEinMB has been on haitus for a little while so we could rearrange, revamp, and move ahead. We have changed the rules – there aren’t any really – and changed the posting day to Friday. All of this should work out great.

So, now that we are back in business let me share the first Ellie recipe I have done in quite a while.

    honey haravest quinoa

Quinoa is one of those grain like ingredients you really have to acquire a taste for. The great thing about this little ‘seed’ is that you can use it for sweet and savory dishes. In this case, it is a sweet breakfast eh… dinner treat. Cooked quinoa mixed with apples, dried cranberries, toasted pecans, cinnamon, milk and honey. The perfect breakfast – or dinner – if you don’t have a lot of time and you want something just a little different. And it is different, but tasty!!

I found the recipe on so you can get the simple steps there. It is also in Ellie’s So Easy on page 63. But they book. or her other two and join us at CEinMB!!

If you want a perfect pic-nic sandwich this is the one. A sandwich in a pocket. How more portable can you get than that?

And it is a good pic-nic sandwich, too. Simply, it is a whole wheat pita filled with

    romaine {I used leaf lettuce.},
    cucumber slices,
    turkey {Should be turkey breast, but I didn’t have any the day I wanted to make it so used deli turkey.}
    and mint.

But the lettuce and turkey are not the stars of this sandwich. What really gives this pocket flavor is the.

    Feta Spread
    3/4 cup(s) (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese {I found Tomato and Basil Feta}
    3 tablespoon(s) nonfat plain yogurt
    1 tablespoon(s) fresh lemon juice
    2 teaspoon(s) dried oregano
    1 teaspoon(s) finely grated lemon zest
    1/4 teaspoon(s) freshly ground black pepper

In a medium bowl, combine the feta cheese and yogurt with a fork, mashing any large chunks of cheese. Stir in the lemon juice, oregano, lemon zest, and pepper. The spread will keep for up to 5 days in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

The sandwich called for mint leaves, but since I used the Tomato/Basil Feta I used basil leaves instead.

This was a good sandwich. I made 1/3 of the recipe and that was enough spread for one good sized Pita sandwich.

This weeks CEinMB choice was Jennifer’s of The Rookie Baker and you can find the complete instructions for the sandwich HERE!!

You can also find the recipeon page 80 of Ellie’s So Easy.

Craving Ellie in My Belly is a small group cooking/baking from Ellie Krieger’s recipes. You should join us.

Actually, it’s supposed to be Cinnamon Raisin Toast with Honey-Walnut Spread. And I hope Kayte will forgive me for using just plain bread. It was her pick after all. But I really think the star of this show was supposed to be the spread, not the toast. And it was…

      Cinnamon Raisin Toast with Honey-Walnut Spread

I had just made some Fresh Bread and it was perfect for trying this spread. Since I didn’t have the bread with cinnamon in it I decided to sprinkle cinnamon and sugar ON the spread. And a few walnuts on top of that, with just a little drizzle of Honey. The spread itself is simply, simply, a combination of Greek Yogurt, toasted chopped walnuts and honey. Simple. Delicious. Ellie suggests topping the toast and spread with peach or apple or pear. I liked it better without the fruit because the peach (which is what I used) tended to overpower the spread.

Thanks, Kayte. Another goodie to add to the Breakfast List.

The recipe is in Ellie’s So Easy on page 34. (Or on Apple Crumbles Blog. The other members of CEinMB and their Spread are HERE.

Thursdays are easy nights for supper. I don’t have to decide what to cook. Why? Because Thursday is Craving Ellie in My Belly night. Except this week, it was my pick. But since I chose this 5 weeks ago it was still an easy night.

      Asian Noodle Bowl

I have to tell you that I am very fond of several different types of cuisine. Mexican. Italian. Greek. German. And Asian. I just love the diversity of all the different flavors. So when it comes my turn to pick for one of the cooking groups I will usually chose from one of those if available – or Seafood. Thise time it was Asian. This was a basic stir fry of brocalli, baby corn, shitake mushrooms, peppers (which I didn’t have) and chicken. The difference between this stir-fry type dish and others is that instead of rice, Ellie tossed the veggie mix with noodles. You could use Udon or speghetti. I had some brown rice udon so that is what I used.

I have to admit that it wasn’t one of my favorites. It was just a little bland for me. It was disappointing because I usually really like Ellie’s recipes. Ah, well. Won’t stop me from making it again and maybe playing around with it a little. Maybe with shrimp??

You can find the recipe in So Easy or HERE!


As you know, if you read my last blog entry, I was internet-less last week. So this week there is also a CEinMB Two-Fer.

And I had to make this one because my Good Buddy and WWF partner, Leslie, picked it.

      Wheat Berry Salad

I had NEVER had wheat berries before. I didn’t really know what they were and could not find them anywhere. Luckily, my Daughter lives in a Real City and found them for me at their local WF. Different. It’s not a berry, in case you haven’t had them either.

This salad called for cooked wheat berries, celery, walnuts, dried cherries, scallions, and parsley. I didn’t have everything Ellie called for so I played around a little. I used walnuts and pecans (never have too many nuts) as well as mandarin oranges and dried cranberries. I did add the parsley and the scallions but not the celery. Tossed the whole mixture with lemon juice and carefully piled it on a fresh bed of lettuce. Not bad. I do wish I had not added the scallions. They were somewhat bitter when paired with the fruit. I will make this again, but without the scallions.

Thanks, Leslie, for broadening my horizons – again!!

You can find the recipe in Ellie’s So Easy or HERE!

Visit the other members of CEinMB and see how they liked these two dishes.

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