How pinteresting, Kale and Quinoa Salad

First, I am utterly addicted to Pinterest. I’ve been pinning food, style and classroom ideas like a mad woman. You can follow me here.

Second, I have yet another quinoa recipe to share with y’all. Lately I have been on a major quinoa kick. I need to be on a kale kick too, as it is taking over our garden.

In my opinion, quinoa salads are perfect for both lunch and dinner parties. So when the hubs and I were invited to our buddy Nate’s birthday potluck, I knew a quinoa creation*  was in my future.

*I’m counting that as alliteration

Kale and Quinoa Salad


1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed

2 cups water

10 kale leaves, stems removed (or half a bunch)

1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, not packed in oil (if packed in oil, rinse/dry)

5 oz fresh mozzarella, chunked or shredded

1 extra small sweet onion, diced (or half a medium sized onion)

10 basil leaves, chiffonade

3 TBS lemon juice

3 TBS olive oil

1 TBS stone ground mustard

1 tsp prepared horseradish

2 tsp fresh oregano, diced (or 1/2 tsp dried)

3 garlic cloves, minced

s&p to taste


In a medium sized pot, bring water and quinoa to a boil, cover with lid, reduce to simmer, 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, remove kale from stems and shred. Mix with  sundried tomatoes and add to cooked quinoa. Let sit at least 10 minutes (to wilt the kale). Place in fridge to cool.

Once quinoa, tomato and kale has cooled, add onion, basil and mozzarella.

Mix dressing ingredients (lemon juice, olive oil, mustard, horseradish, garlic, salt and pepper), add to quinoa mixture, stir well.

Serve cold.

Enjoy! (Especially you, Joy Jones!)

Sassy Sunday.

Today’s excursion to Schweitzer Mountain did not happen. When we checked the weather for today it said: 50 degrees and raining.  Not exactly great weather to learn how to snowboard in.

Yet what did we find today? 50 degrees and BLUE SKY!

Meh, no worries. This just means I had more time to do what I love…clean out the freezer and get ready for a week of cooking. We had some questionable beef that needed to be tossed. And I also discovered 3 loafs of Dave’s Killer Bread, 4 La Brea demi-baguettes, 1 1/2 La Brea Rosemary Olive Oil loafs, 1 1/2 La Brea multi-grain loafs and some Oroweat sandwich thins. Hi, I’m Leila, and I’m a carboholic.

With all this newly acquired space in the freezer I’ve decided to actually do a freezer-meal month. I’ve been scoping out Once a Month Mom for a while now, but I’ve never actually made any of her dishes. My friend Kelly did a month of freezer meals and saved a ton of moola at the grocery store. After hearing about her awesome savings (and she uses all organic too), I decided I needed to get on the wagon. ‘

Today, however, was freshtastic, in the moment cooking.

Brekkie consisted of too many cups of coffee w/raw sugar and ff half&half (I actually prefer the ff stuff to the regular stuff…odd? Yes. But I think the chemicals cancel out the lactose because it doesn’t bother my stummy at all). I also had a “fried” egg (I totally suck at frying eggs), 2 slices of thick cut bacon and 2 spinach pancakes. YUM!

Have you ever had Dr. Praeger’s spinach pancakes? I love them! And I am fairly positive I can recreate them with ease. And yes, that would be a Christmas paper plate.

After brekkie the hubs and I took Rilo on a walk. It was so nice out I decided to jog a bit, (as the hubs’ walking stride is pretty much the same as my jogging stride). We wound up doing a 2.89 mile loop according to Not too shabby considering my recent treadmill experiences.

After returning home the hubs decided to break into our garage. Remember how I said it was broken? Well after researching our options the hubs decided to cut a hole a tad bit smaller than the size of a window (which he plans to install in the spring). Thankfully my father-in-law had the necessary tools and he came by to help out.

Rilo looks concerned.

The boys wanted me to crawl in through the hole to investigate what the issue was. Luckily Libb wanted to take my place.

I was much happier photographing the event and sipping on a lunchtime green monster.

The mix: 1 frozen nanner (cut up), 2 handfuls fresh spinach, 1 cup Almond Breeze unsweetened vanilla and 1 scoop unflavored GNC whey protein powder. If you are lactose intolerant and cannot stand soy, like me, give Almond Breeze a try. It is tasty, tasty.

After the kitchen was clean and the garage door was fixed I set to work determining what dessert to bring to E’s for our Golden Globe viewing dinner. I was pretty excited about our menu as E made some black bean burgers and was planning to test out my kale chips. I said I would bring salad and a dessert I could cobble together out of my pantry.

Enter Lemon Sassycakes. OMG, how I’ve missed these in my life. I lost the recipe and couldn’t access my old gmail account, where I knew I had emailed them to someone at some point. But I finally found the recipe and have now bookmarked it in three separate locations (including this post), so have no fear, I will never go sassycakeless again.

The key to cute frosted sassycakes? Throw your frosting in a ziplock baggie and cut a tiny hole in the corner.

Squeeze from there and you’ve got a perfectly dressed sassycake, (or any cake/cookie of your choice).

And eat that overdressed one in the back corner first, clearly he doesn’t make a good first impression on your friends and needs to be disposed of right away.

But before we ate the sassycakes (ok maybe we had one or two first), we ate a little kale chip goodness…

with salad and black bean burgers. Mmmm pleasantly full.

Did you watch the Golden Globes? While Jane Fonda can still rock it, I don’t think her 1982 dress can.