“Ribbons of colorful vegetables and fresh herbs intertwine with tender noodles in this delicately flavored salad.”

That is how Ellie described this tasty salad. And she was RIGHT!! Of course!!

Soba noodles mixed with fresh bell pepper, carrot, basil from my garden and some cilantro. Mix that with a fantastic sauce will all the Asian flavors – rice vinegar, sesame oil, garlic fish sauce – and you have a healthy alternative to the usual heavy noodle salads. Delicious!! The sauce alone will make you swoon!!

I loved the bite of the cilantro mixed with the sweet bell pepper and carrot. Make this one! SOON!!

You can find Ellie’s recipe on FOODTV or on page 139 of The Food You Crave.

The theme this week for I Heart Cooking Clubs was Oodles of Noodles.  I know there will be other delicious noodle dishes posted there.


    A picture is worth a 1000 words!

We love Pumpkin Bread. I would not have thought of putting in fresh cranberries as Ellie suggests. She says the bread is “..enhanced with bursts of the crimson tart cranberries,..”
They definitely add something extra to the sweet bites of bread.

    Nonstick cooking spray
    3/4 cup all-purpose flour
    3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry or whole-wheat flour
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    1 cup canned pumpkin puree
    2/3 cup honey
    1/3 canola oil
    2 large eggs
    1 large egg white
    1 cup fresh whole cranberries

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 9×5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, cinnamon, baking powder, nutmeg, allspice, and salt.
In another large bowl, whisk together the pumpkin, honey, oil, eggs, and egg white until well combined.
Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, mixing just enough to combine evenly. Gently stir in the cranberries.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan.
Bake until the top is browned and a wooden skewer inserted into the center comes out clean, 50 to 60 minutes.
Allow to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then transfer the bread to a wire rack to cool completely before slicing. Makes 8 servings SERVING SIZE one 1-inch-thick slice

PER SERVING Calories 290; Total Fat 11 9 (Sat Fat 1 g, Mono Fat 6.4 g, Poly Fat 3 g);
Protein 5 s. Carb 45 g; Fiber 3 g; Cholesterol 55 mg; Sodium 290 mg
EXCELLENT SOURCE OF Magnesium, Selenium, Vitamin A
GOOD SOURCE OF Fiber, Iron, Niacin, Phosphorus, Protein, Riboflavin, Vitamin K

While we enjoyed this bread I really didn’t care for the fresh cranberries. I know they are better for you but we would have liked dried better. Still good!!

Join in for CEinMB. No pressure, but if you make something of Ellie’s just post it on the website.
This recipe is from Ellie’s Comfort Food Fix page 45.

This morning I started the day with a Smoothie. A Peach Pie Smoothie!

With the inclusion of nutmeg, cinnamon, and honey it did taste more like pie but it was rather underwhelming with flavor. I really don’t care for frozen peaches that much because they often are rather bland, but I still use them. Once I had this one sweet enough it was better but not a repeat.

The recipe calls for ice, but I don’t have a blender and my little blender isn’t built for that so I just left it out. It was still nice and thick with little pieces of peach. I made this because I just wanted something easy for Craving Ellie this week. And this one was super easy.

The recipe is on page 22 of Ellie’s So Easy.

Today is the 17th of August. That means it is almost September. Which means FALL is right around the corner! Right? Okay, fine! I am stretching it just a wee bit, but I am so ready for fall after all the HEAT we have had this summer!!

So when my friend, Di , mentioned making Pumpkin Muffins the other day I found myself wanting pumpkin. Before the Pumpkin Craze starts!!

And since Ellie has a pumpkin muffin recipe in The Foods You Crave I saw it as an omen!!

These muffins pack in all the flavor of pumpkin pie – nutmeg, cloves, cinnamon, ginger – without all the sugar (3/4 cup brown and 3/4 cup molasses) and without all the necessary whipped cream on top. {I think I can resolve THAT problem, but then they won’t be quite as healthy!!} AP and Whole Wheat flour add to the health-ful-ness of this tasty little muffin. {Only 205 calores/muffin and 7gm fat} After only 18 minutes I had some lovely little bites {13} for breakfast. Thanks, Ellie!

These muffins can be found on page 21 of TFYC

BTW I forgot to toss on the pumpkin seeds before baking so just pretend they are there!!

Several years ago when I joined Craving Ellie there were several recipes I had missed and wanted to try. Back then there were weekly choices made by each individual member. Now we only have one monthly member pick and the other Fridays are ‘free’.

    Chicken Cacciatore

I haven’t made cacciatore in years and the last time I did it was with a very heavy sauce. Ellie’s has a nice light sauce made with diced tomatoes, garlic, onions, bell peppers, and mushrooms. (I left those last two out because B doesn’t care much for them.) With the white wine the sauce was just right in taste. I decided to use boneless chicken thighs rather than breasts. It may not be as healthy as Ellie’s version, but it was definitely flavorful. The only thing I would change would be to thicken the sauce a little. Not much, must a little.

(I forgot to take a pic of just the sauce before I mixed it with some egg noodles.) It seemed the best way to serve the dish.

Ellie’s cacciatore is on page 204 of The Foods You Crave it is also HERE!!

Last week I got back into CEinMB cooking with Ellie’s Turkey Meatloaf. We did not eat it alone.

These are not your every day mashed potatoes, these are SMASHED potatoes. Potato pieces steamed in their skins then mashed with sour cream, snipped chives, and chicken broth. I love CHUNKY potatoes. And these still have their skins so they were very rustic and very good. The sour cream and chives made me think of a deconstructed baked potato. Lots of sour cream. They would be good with some added shredded cheese, too.

The fact that I could walk outside and snip off my own chives made these especially fun, too.

I followed Ellie’s recipe with one exception – I cooked the potatoes in the microwave – like baking them – and then cut them into chunks. And then because I didn’t have the moisture from steaming I added a little more chicken broth. Um! UM! GOOD!!

If you like to cook from Ellie’s books just come on by the web page – Craving Ellie in My Belly – and leave your link. No membership required!!

It has been quite a while since I have done an Ellie recipe. I just have not felt like cooking – at all!!

But I think I am out of my slump now and ready to hit the kitchen running!!

What better way to get back into it than with a nice healthy recipe from Ellie!

This is what Ellie said was, “…square in the comfort zone for me with all the homey flavors…” And she is right. All the same ingredients I put in my meatloaf except for the turkey. I have never really used ground turkey that much. But this wasn’t bad. We could get used to it. It does have plenty of flavor. Onions, Worcestershire sauce, ketchup, red bell pepper. Yep! Lots of flavor. The only problem I had was that it was pretty crumbly when I went to slice it up. It actually sat for about 45 minutes after cooking in a warm oven because an emergency errand came up. Ellie says to let it sit about 10 – 15 minutes. Not sure why it was crumbly because it was not dry at all.

One tip I learned. I use oatmeal in mine for filler but Ellie says to soak the oatmeal in milk before adding to the other ingredients. Did make it easier to work with!!

The recipe is in Ellie’s The Food You Crave on page 216. If you like using ground turkey you will like this meatloaf.

Please visit the other CEinMB members and see what they made this week.

Ellie has a new book out – Comfort Food Fix. And it must be a popular one because our last two recipes have come from it.

And today is the last Friday of the month so it is CEinMB group recipe time. This time it was Peggy’s pick and she sent us all the recipe for….


Fritters made not just with potatoes or zucchini but both. And caramelized onions thrown in just for good measure.

I really wanted to like these, but we didn’t. The strongest taste was the zucchini and it was the raw taste. And they were a little bland. I think some Cajun Seasoning would have really helped the flavor. MAYBE I didn’t bake them long enough. I think I will try them again and increase the seasoning.

Sorry, Peggy. This was your choice and I was looking forward to them.

Drop by the Craving Ellie site and see how the others’ fritters turned out.

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.

This week the group’s pick was from Pam of Cookies with Boys and she chose a recipe from Ellie’s new book Comfort Food Fix

The quiche is a healthy version of the quiche. The crust is whole wheat and wonderfully crunchy. the filling is made with fewer eggs, cheese, and smoked ham. I only made a couple of small changes. I used purple onions and some left over ham from our last family feast. I know Ellie won’t mind.

I made 1/2 of the dough recipe for two mini 4″ pies and 1/2 of the filling. There is enough dough left over for two more mini pies and the filling was enough for two pies and one ramekin. After tasting it I wished I had made the full recipe. It was THAT good.

If you visit the Craving Ellie in My Belly webpage you can see how the other quiches turned out.

Thanks, Pam for a tasty pick this month.

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