Honey Garlic Chicken

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I’m not sure if you are a meat lover or not.  I wouldn’t consider myself a meat lover,  but, I love chicken wings.  And not just chicken wings.  Fried chicken wings!!!  It gets very tricky when it comes to buying fried chicken wings because some restaurants make them too greasy, or you end up with hardly any meat attached to the bones. 

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That defeats the purpose to me.  Up until about 20 years ago, when I ate chicken wings, I had to have them with hot sauce.  Now, I eat them with honey mustard sauce because I can no longer tolerate the hot sauce. 

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A couple of weeks ago, I had a taste for some chicken.  This time it was for honey garlic chicken.  This is a super quick recipe.  It satisfied my taste for chicken, gave me a boost of protein, and I had something sweet to eat at the same time.  That’s what I call a win-win situation.

Photo by Katina Horton

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Here is the recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 2 chicken breasts
  • 3 tablespoons of minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of
  • onion and garlic powder
  • black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons of honey
  • 1/3 cup of olive oil

Directions:

  • Cut the two chicken breasts into chunks and season them.
  • Mix all of the above ingredients, except the honey, into a skillet of heated olive oil.  
  • When the breasts are browned, add the honey, mixing it well with a wooden spoon.
  • Optional:  Add parsley flakes to the mixture after it’s done for garnishing.
  • Enjoy!

Simple Vegan Chili

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vegan, vegetarian, healthy eating, food, chili, simple food, cozy, comfort food, vegetables, kitchen, simple functional grace-filled living, simple functional grace-filled news, katina horton, food photography

Photo by Katina Horton

Ingredients

  • 1 small bag of corn
  • 3 cans of low-sodium black beans
  • 3 cans of low-sodium Dark Red Kidney Beans
  • 1 1/2 cans of Diced tomatoes with onions, celery, and green peppers
  • 3/4 cup of quinoa
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
  • 3 tablespoons of onion powder, garlic powder, parsley, turmeric, ginger powder, curry, and cumin
  • 5 tablespoons of chili powder
  • 1/2 cup of avocado oil

Directions

  • Dump all of the above ingredients into your slow cooker and let it cook for 4 hours on high.  If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can put it into a big pot, and it should all be ready within 1 hour.  
  • Enjoy!!

****** I don’t use salt, so if you taste it, and it seems like something is missing, more onion powder always does the trick.

Pasta, Black Bean, and Vegetable Mix

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Pasta, Black Bean, and Vegetable Mix

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Ingredients:

  • 1 box of thin spaghetti
  • 3 tablespoons of italian seasoning, onion, chili, and garlic powder
  • 4 tablespoons of olive or grapeseed oil
  • herb and garlic pasta sauce
  • vegetable pasta sauce
  • 1 1/2 cans of black beans
  • 3 zucchinis
  • 1 1/2 cans of diced tomatoes

Directions:

  • Boil a pot of water, adding the thin spaghetti and a tablespoon of oil after the water has started boiling.
  • Rinse the excess water off the pasta when it is done.
  • Add the Herb and garlic and vegetable pasta sauce.
  • After cutting the zucchinis into chunks, saute them, along with the diced tomatoes and black beans.
  • Dump the vegetable and bean mix into the spaghetti mix, adding the seasonings, and then combining the ingredients.
  • Enjoy!

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

katina horton, family, simple functional grace-filled living, simple, functional grace-filled news, cookies, chocolate chunk cookies, healthy desserts, healthy living, healthy eating, fun times, grocery store, grocery shopping, lifestyle, bloggers, blogging, baking, adventure, friends, small groups, bible study, work

Hope you guys are doing well on this beautiful Sunday afternoon in the Midwest. Be blessed! Here is a recipe for Chocolate Chunk Cookies:

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Ingredients

  • 2 cups of oatmeal
  • 2 cups of almond flour
  • 1/2 cup of chocolate chip chunks
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1/3 cup of coconut flakes
  • 2 tablespoons of flax seed meal
  • 1/3 cup of sunflower seeds
  • 1/3 cup of sliced almonds
  • 1/3 cup of walnuts
  • 3/4 cup of almond milk
katina horton, family, simple functional grace-filled living, simple, functional grace-filled news, cookies, chocolate chunk cookies, healthy desserts, healthy living, healthy eating, fun times, grocery store, grocery shopping, lifestyle, bloggers, blogging, baking, adventure, friends, small groups, bible study, work

Directions

  • Grab a large bowl, mixing all of the above ingredients.
  • Place parchment paper onto two cookie sheets.
  • Scoop the mixture with a small ice-cream scooper, making sure that you press the sides of the scooper against the bowl in order to drain off excess liquid before placing the scoop on the parchment paper.
  • Bake at 320 degrees for about 25 minutes.
  • Enjoy!

Lentil, Pasta, & Eggplant Soup

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Three weeks ago, I made lentil and eggplant soup.  I promise you, it did not disappoint.  So, if you are up for something new, why not try it out?  Enjoy and have a blessed rest of your week!

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Lentil, Pasta, and Eggplant Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 box of Rotini pasta
  • 1 lb of French lentils
  • 1 lb of ground turkey meat
  • 2 eggplants
  • 1/2 jar of garlic pasta sauce
  • 1/2 can of fire roasted diced tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons of cumin, chili powder, onion powder, garlic powder, turmeric, ginger,curry, and parsley
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa
  • 1 cup of avocado oil
  • 1 cup of broth
  • 2 bunches of asparagus

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Directions

  • Boil the french lentils for about one hour, simultaneously, boiling the rotini and quinoa together in water and 1/2 cup of oil for about 25 minutes.
  • While they are boiling, brown the ground turkey meat in 1/4 cup of oil.
  • Saute the eggplant, asparagus, and diced tomatoes together.
  • After the rotini and quinoa finishes boiling, add them, the vegetable mix, the ground turkey, and all the other ingredients into a bigger pot and boil for about 45 minutes longer.
  • Enjoy!

Mediterranean Dish

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About a year ago, I decided to come up with a quick meal based upon the few ingredients that I had at home.  And guess what?  It turned out pretty good.  My son stated that it tasted Mediterranean, so I decided to go with that.    I hope that you enjoy the rest of your Saturday.  

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Here is the recipe:

  • Mediterranean Dish
  • 3 chicken breasts
  • 1/2 cups of rice
  • 1 1/2 cans of cut-leaf spinach
  • 3 tablespoons of onion powder, garlic powder, cumin, and curry
  • 1/3 cup of oil
  1. Cut the chicken into chunks.
  2. Place the oil and breasts in a skillet, frying them for about 20 minutes.
  3. While the breasts are frying, boil the rice.
  4. Saute the cut-leaf spinach in oil.
  5. Place all of the above ingredients into a crock pot for an hour, along with a half cup of water to give a mashed effect and enjoy!

A Little Bit of Normal During the Abnormal

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Right now, in our world, we are faced with a situation that we have never had to deal with before. We have a virus that is worldwide, and there are lockdowns with specific instructions that are given, and each set of instructions are different for each region.  No matter what these instructions are, we have been asked to stay home.  Unless we have essential jobs or errands to run, we are told to stay put for the safety of ourselves, our loved ones, and the extremely vulnerable.

During this season, we have all felt a little bit of some form of anxiety or fear.  Change brings anxiety.  Sicknesses/Diseases bring on fear and anxiety.  And lastly, but definitely not least, the unknown brings on anxiety.  One unknown is that we don’t know how long the worldwide lock downs will last.  We don’t know how long the shortages in the grocery stores or hoarding/panic buying will last.  We don’t know how long it will be till we feel a sense of normal again.  To be honest, when we think about it, will things ever really be “normal”?  Those of us who haven’t had to deal with trauma are now having to ride these waves.  Those of us who already have PTSD are dealing with compounded trauma.

Hope

There is one thing that we can focus on in all this madness.  And it is found in Hebrews 13:8:Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. All hope is not lost. We can have what I call a little bit of normal during the abnormal.

One of the best things that we can do for ourselves during this time is to come up with a schedule that we can stick to in order to keep our bodies/minds/souls rested, renewed, and refreshed.

This is a good time for creativity.  There will be times that we’ll get stuck.  The important thing is us coming up with a schedule and sticking to it for the sake of our own, emotional, mental, physical, and spiritual health, as well as that of the other members of our household.  There will be times that we’ll have to just stop and have that cry or meltdown.  It releases the trauma hormones, stress, and anxiety from our bodies and will definitely help us to feel better.  This is an area that I have to remind myself of over and over again.  “Get the cry out.  Have self-compassion and empathy for all you have gone through.  Then move forward.”  Sometimes we might have to rinse and repeat several times a day. 

Blessings

So, what are some of the things that I have been enjoying during this time?  1) Getting to spend some time with my almost 22-year-old son.  2)  Listening to the birds in the morning and then again at 8 at night when they are rounding up for the day.  3) Baking banana bread, zucchini bread, and cookies.  4)  The creativity juices to write poetry as I sit on my bed among my pillows in the morning.  5)  Extra time to read.  6) Time to work on writing two books.

Here are snapshots of today’s baking process:

Photos by Katina Horton

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I pray blessings upon each and every one of you!

Until next time,

Katina 

Breakfast Wrap

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I hope you guys have had a wonderful, restful weekend. I went for a couple errands yesterday, and then one today. Other than that, I have been taking it easy for most of the weekend. I finally finished editing a poetry book that I have been working on for the last month and a half. I read a little bit out of a good twelve books, both fiction and non-fiction, and had a book club meeting for one of the books (Little Fires Everywhere) via Zoom. And guess what? I even got some cleaning done.

hashbrown, healthy eating, healthy breakfast, simple
Photo by Katina Horton

Two weeks ago, I decided to make a quick breakfast wrap. It was simple, but filling, and it definitely hit the spot. The one thing that I was glad about is the fact that grating the potatoes were easier than expected. And so was the cleanup job. I hope that you enjoy it!

Ingredients:

  • 6 organic golden yellow potatoes
  • 1 cup of cheese
  • 5 tablespoons of parsley, onion powder, italian seasoning, ginger, cumin, chili powder, and garlic powder
  • 1 package of whole wheat tortilla wraps
  • 1/2 cup of avocado oil

Directions:

  • Place a grater inside a big bowl or plate.
  • Grate the potatoes.
  • Add the avocado oil to the skillet.
  • Add the potatoes and seasonings to the skillet.
  • Cook, stirring the hash browns several times until they’re nice and brown.
  • Heat up your tortilla wrap, adding the hash browns and cheese to the inside, along with any other toppings, and enjoy!

Have a blessed week!

Katina

How to Get Back in Shape After the COVID-19 Lockdown

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Happy Sunday all! Today, I am featuring a guest blog post from a fellow blogger. His name is Gabriel Patel. He enjoys writing about health and wellness, and co-founded Health Well Wise with a group of friends who share the desire to help people live happy, healthy lives. Have a blessed rest of your Sunday.

Photo via Rawpixel

If you gained weight during the coronavirus quarantine, you’re not alone. It’s normal — and completely okay — to put on a few pounds when you’re experiencing periods of stress and a serious change to your regular routine. However, self-isolation may have left you feeling less than your best. Whether you’re looking to lose weight or simply regain the energy you had pre-lockdown, check out the following tips to reclaim your wellness and get back on track!

Clean Up Your Diet

For many of us, the lockdown meant living off of freezer meals, instant noodles, and other forms of quick, easy, and accessible processed foods. But it’s time to get some nutrients back in our diets! Fortunately, there are all kinds of healthy meals you can make with basic ingredients you already have in your pantry, such as spinach tortellini soup, legume quesadillas, skillet rice, and stew. The beauty of these recipes is that you can mix in whatever vegetables or proteins you have in your kitchen. Casseroles are also great for this! Get creative and have fun coming up with nutritious meals based on the ingredients you have on hand.

If you could use some help creating a clean diet plan, consider working with a professional dietician. You can use job boards to find qualified pros, such as freelance dieticians, who can answer all of your nutrition-related questions, help you build a healthy meal plan, and coach you through any barriers you may be facing. Some other freelancers who can support you on your wellness journey include online personal trainers, yoga instructors, and therapists.

Take Steps to Avoid Injury

When you get back into exercise, do it slowly; pushing yourself too hard after an extended period of inactivity could lead to injuries. This is especially true if you’re going back to the gym. Remember, you may not be able to work out at your previous level, so go easy on yourself by reducing your reps and weight. The most important thing to remember is to listen to your body.

If you’re hesitant about returning to the gym, try at-home workouts, running, or hiking — or just go for a walk! If you were unfortunate enough to contract the coronavirus, CNET recommends talking to your healthcare provider about when it would be safe to start exercising again. Try to stick to short bursts of gentle exercise in the days and weeks following your recovery.

Get More Sleep

When it comes to fitness and overall well being, sleep is underrated. Getting enough sleep plays an important role in muscle recovery, stress reduction, and weight management — all of which will help you meet your post-lockdown fitness goals. If you’re not getting at least seven hours of good-quality sleep every night, take some steps to improve your bedroom environment and help your body wind down in the evening. Make your bedroom dark, cool, and quiet; develop a relaxing bedtime routine; avoid caffeine in the afternoon; and limit alcohol late in the evening.

Conquer Stress

Stress is one of the largest barriers to a healthy lifestyle. Stress can disrupt your sleep patterns, affect your eating habits, and reduce your motivation to exercise. Of course, we’re all experiencing heightened stress with everything that’s going on in the world right now. Even if you can’t control what’s happening all around you, you can bring a greater sense of control to your own life by taking active steps to reduce stress. Make time for your hobbies, socialize with friends and family members who make you happy, get in the habit of positive self-talk, and try to exercise daily — even if you’d rather do anything else.

While it was easy to let healthy habits fall by the wayside during the corona virus lock-down, now is the time to regain control over your fitness. Exercising, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, and combating stress will do a lot to improve how you feel — and you may even lose a few pounds! Start working towards your goals today!

Eggplant, Lentil, & Rice Casserole

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With everything going on, it becomes very important to keep a routine, practice wellness/self-care, and continue to let our creativity juices flow. I have been continuing to make my weekly concoctions. For the last month now, Culver’s has been a Friday treat for me. It eliminates me having to cook, and I can immediately begin to enjoy my weekend.

On yesterday, I was talking to my mom, and I decided to look out the window. There were chipmunks chirping, and a bluejay flying mid-air. Before I got a chance to tell my mother about the blue-jay, I noticed a nice-sized animal in the yard. It appeared to get along with the squirrel that was standing there. I couldn’t figure it out for the life of me. I ended up sending my mother and son a picture. Then, I sent one to my neighbor next. After tossing ideas back and forth, and googling their responses, I was able to come to the conclusion that what was in my front yard was a ground hog. Of all things! I told my neighbor, “There’s never a dull moment as far as what we will see on this property”. She agreed.

Eggplant Lentil and Rice Casserole, healthy eating, vegetarian, food, quinoa, food, food photography, katina horton, simple functional grace-filled living
Photo by Katina Horton

Well, here’s the recipe. I hope that you will enjoy it. Have a blessed rest of your Father’s Day!

Eggplant, Lentil, & Rice Casserole

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggplants cut into small chunks
  • 1 cup of black lentils
  • 2 cans of Hunts’s garlic and herb pasta sauce
  • 5 tablespoons of cumin, onion powder, curry, turmeric, garlic powder, parsley, chili powder
  • 2 cups of Mexican cheese
  • 1 cup of rice
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes
  • 1/3 cup of quinoa
  • 1/2 cup of avocado oil

Directions:

  • Boil your lentils in about 5 to 6 cups of water for about 50 minutes.
  • While the lentils are boiling, boil your rice and quinoa for about 20 minutes.
  • Stir-fry the diced tomatoes and eggplant.
  • Dump all of the above into a wok and stir-fry for about twenty minutes, making sure to add the oil and seasonings.
  • Grab a casserole pan and dump all of the above ingredients into the pan along with the cheese.
  • Stir with a wooden spoon.
  • Pour the cans of pasta sauce on top, garnishing with parsley.
  • Bake at 425 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.
  • Enjoy!