Stuffed Pepper Soup

I realized that I make a lot of soups during the winter now that I’m finally putting them all together on my blog. But, soups are amazing – because they are so easily adaptable – throw whatever you have laying around into them. And the best part? They’re also always low in calories and high in protein and nutrients. Stuffed pepper soup has always been one of my favorites because it smells delicious as you are cooking it, and it’s SO EASY! Plus, you usually make more than enough for leftovers! #winning.

Stuffed Pepper Soup

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1. If you haven’t made your homemade tomato sauce, start by following my recipe for that, here.

2. Add the basil, heavy cream and salt and pepper to taste. Leave it simmering on low.

3. Start by cooking your rice. If you want to make Brazilian rice (my favorite) start with butter and garlic in a hot pot. Cook until garlic starts to brown. Add the dry rice. Stir and coat for about 5 minutes or until the rice gets hot. Then add the water. Stir and cover.

4.Place the onions, and 2 cloves of garlic into a hot sauté pan. Continue to heat them until the onions start to turn translucent and the garlic browns.

5. Add the ground beef. Continue to cook until it is fully browned and set aside in a bowl.

6. Add the chopped peppers and leftover garlic to the hot pan and cook until they soften.

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7. Add the ingredients individually into a bowl to serve (never combine the rice with the soup as it will expand and ruin the soup and flavor. Only add what you will eat as you eat it).

Garnish with shredded parmesan cheese.

Stuffed Pepper Soup
Serves 6
A quick and easy recipe that will keep your warm and fueled through those cold months.
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Prep Time
30 min
Prep Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 peppers (shoot for different colors such as one red, one yellow and one orange)
  2. 1/2 yellow onion, chopped
  3. 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  4. 1 lb ground beef
  5. 1 1/2 cups jasmine rice
  6. 1 can or 16 oz of tomato sauce homemade
  7. fresh or dried basil
  8. 2 tbsp butter
  9. 1/4 cup heavy cream
  10. salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. If you haven't made your homemade tomato sauce, start by following my recipe for that, here.
  2. Add the basil, heavy cream and salt and pepper to taste. Leave it simmering on low.
  3. Start by cooking your rice. If you want to make Brazilian rice (my favorite) start with butter and garlic in a hot pot. Cook until garlic starts to brown. Add the dry rice. Stir and coat for about 5 mintues or until the rice gets hot. Then add the water. Stir and cover.
  4. Place the onions, and 2 cloves of garlic into a hot sauté pan. Continue to heat them until the onions start to turn turn translucent and the garlic browns.
  5. Add the ground beef. Continue to cook until it is fully browned and set aside in a bowl. Add the chopped peppers and leftover garlic to the hot pan and cook until they soften.
  6. Add the ingredients individually into a bowl to serve (never combine the rice with the soup as it will expand and ruin the soup and flavor. Only add what you will eat as you eat it).
  7. Garnish with shredded parmesan cheese.
Football Food and Motherhood http://www.footballfoodandmotherhood.com/
 

 

Staying Fueled for the Holidays (and Beyond)

I swear when I was 25, I had all the time in the world – to go shopping, to sleep in, to go out and party all night. I don’t know if it’s technology, the sun going down at 4:30pm these days, or just the fact that I running multiple jobs and companies from home WHILE being a mom, but I would literally KILL for those days I would lay around watching Hoarders marathons all day eating Chinese takeout with my roommates. 

So as a mom, I have to take different means of re-energizing these days (can’t just pop a Redbull the moment I walk into the bar to work 12 hours straight for a Steelers game).  

1. Exercise.

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I saw you roll your eyes – I know, I KNOW! But if you get into a routine, it gets So. Much. Easier. I like to hit the gym first thing in the morning on the days I don’t have my son, and then I do Kettle bell workouts in my living room the days I do when he’s napping. If we’re going to be out and about all day – I consider that my daily exercise. I walk an extra 10/20 blocks instead of taking the subway, and carrying him and the stroller up and down those subway steps is DEFINITELY cardio! 

2. Caffeine.

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I remember growing up watching my mom brew a pot of coffee every morning in that old Mr. Coffee maker. I hated it and couldn’t understand why she would force herself to drink that black sludge every morning. Oh age, how you’ve caught up with me! I too, now cannot live without a hot cup of java every morning, but these days – coffee has come a long way!

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In fact, The BRAND NEW Keurig® 2.0 hot beverage brewing system ($199) not only brews one single up – but a full four-cup carafe! This can come in handy on Monday mornings when we ALL know we drink more than one cup. It’s also perfect for those simple little dinner parties, or mom playdates you’ll be hosting this winter. 

If you have the self-brewer from your old Keurig or those old K-cups, unfortunately they are not compatible with the new brewer (so you might want to wrap them up as stocking stuffers for friends!) This is because the Keurig 2.0 Brewing Technology. K-Cup® packs must have Keurig 2.0 Brewing Technology™ to be used in the Keurig® 2.0 system.  This is represented by a ring around the lid on K-Cup® packs and a number shown in a circle at 6 o’clock.

The Keurig® 2.0 brewer brews all of the new Keurig® brand packs, which include nearly 400 different beverages from 60 brands, including including beverages from brands such as Snapple ®, Lipton ®,  and Dunkin Donuts ® among others.  You can view all available brands, here.

3. Food. 

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I know it’s hard, but all that crappy food you’re eating is dragging you down. Just because it’s cold out doesn’t mean you have to build up your fat lair like a bear about to hibernate.  You should already be thinking about that bikini this summer, or the simple fact that Americans are the most obese country in the world, and um, well…you’re not looking so fine, ol chap! Go ahead and eat that cookie, but make sure you’ve earned it first. A great way to save calories and still indulge in winter foods is soup. Soup keeps you warm, you can pack it full of veggies and protein, and it won’t make you look like one of those people in Wall-E by the end of January. Try my awesome Stuffed Pepper Soup recipe, or my Roasted Butternut Squash Soup recipe. Both are freaking delicious.

4. Sleep.

Yes, sleep – that stuff you’re not getting enough of. Stop trying to work and clean the house into the wee hours of the night and just go lay down. It’s proven that people that get MORE sleep are actually more productive. That means you’re ENCOURAGED to get your beauty rest. Stop trying to do it all and I guarantee when the kids get you up at 5:45am, you’ll actually feel rested enough to take on the day (well, with a carafe of coffee of course!)

I received product for review in exchange for this blog post.  All opinions are my own.

The Ultimate Holiday Tour(ture) of NYC

NYC is extra special at the holidays because not only do we have to walk those 10 blocks against piercing icy snow, we’re dodging tourists who don’t mind the stinging cold slush beating down on them. As a local, we have our tips and secrets to beat the holiday crowds (and I can’t TELL you or they wouldn’t be secrets anymore!) But for the brave souls who really love extreme sport challenges, the holidays in NYC are meant just for you! I’ve put together a little check-list challenge that you can take on this weekend if you have the guts.

That’s right – I dare you to take the Ultimate NYC  Holiday Tour(ture). Can you handle it? 

1. Wait until the week of Christmas to see Santa at Macy’s, Bloomingdale’s or ABC Carpet and Home.  

You’re way too busy this month to try and plan to see Santa early. No one even THINKS about it until after December 15th right? So quit wasting all that time thinking and just wait until December 23rd to go see the big man when everyone else is waiting in line. You’ll only spend oh let’s say five or six hours standing in line just so the kids can tell him they want that Skylanders doll that is sold out anyways. 

2. Try to ice skate at Rockefeller center the same night of the tree lighting.

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Really want to feel the pain of waiting in line? Why wait to go ice skating on a week night, heck – let’s go the same night they light up the Rockefeller tree and do it all at once! (Yes this pic is blurry. I stood in the standing rain for hours just for Max NOT to look at the camera. This photo is PERFECTION for me).

3. Navigate Bryant Park, Union Square or Columbus Circle on a Saturday afternoon.

Don’t even bother trying to sip that hot chocolate to stay warm unless you want to decorate your new peacoat with pretty brown spots!

4. Buy that hat for $50 that was “hand-knit in Nepal” just because you’re a sap standing outside with all those pretty twinkling lights and Christmas music.

Go ahead because the one you can get inside at H&M in Columbus Circle for only $3 was hand-knit in China. No one wears China made hats anymore. 

5. Feed your kids tons of sugar at Dylan’s Candy Bar, and then stand in line to get into FAO Schwarz.

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Ever need to induce a toddler meltdown? This is how. Bonus points – stand there for the hour line while it’s RAINING. Tip: Listen, you might want to tag your kids before unleashing them in this store. It wouldn’t be the first time I heard someone tell me they lost a kid (or two!) The guards might stop then from running out onto the city streets, but they aren’t going to stop them from trying to go home with the “Big” Piano for the special holiday price of only $99!

6. Go see a children’s Broadway show like Fancy Nancy during nap time.

There’s nothing like blowing $50 a person to see an exclusive Christmas show and forcing the kids to stay awake for it so they can scream and have to leave the show early. 

7. Eat somewhere that isn’t kid-friendly.

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Do it I dare you. Double dog dare you. Why use a trusty app like MommyNearest.com that locates all the coolest places for you when you could just walk in that fancy looking eatery on Central Park South and piss off all the locals with a screaming child who just might or might not throw that $10 croissant at the next table. (P.S. that photo above is from Landmarc which is EXTREMELY kid-friendly, hence the cotton candy).

8. If you’re feeling REALLY rich and festive, I recommend taking a $150 carriage ride though Central Park.

But wait until night when it’s really romantic and extra freezing so you just keep wishing it was over faster. Oh wait? They have blankets? You mean those big dirty things that tons and tons of tourists with snotty-nosed kids wrap up in everyday? Yeah, sure they wash them every night! 

9. Is your child considering playing football?

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You’re in luck! Just take a peaceful stroll down 5th Avenue to see all the cute decorated stores you can’t afford. After those first 10 blocks he’ll be an all-star linebacker!

10.  Oh heck – you’re in NYC. YOLO.

Might as well go see Time’s Square! You won’t be here for New Years, so you should totally go see the ball in person before it drops.  Don’t forget to leave that $500 you just pulled out of the ATM in your back pocket so you can get robbed, too. Even better? Hold a map up after you take a selfie so you can attract all the warm and fuzzy characters to come and take holiday card photos with you for only $20 bucks a piece! Didn’t pay him? Better run – they’re known to throw a punch. That’s what you call a Snapchat!

Wow, you’re still going strong? Okay – let’s just call it a day and take a black cab or jitney back to the hotel or your friend’s house where you’re staying in Queens. He’s totally not going to charge you $100 to get back home without a meter, and of course that includes a tip! Oh, he doesn’t have GPS in 2014? Bummer – looks like you just extended your tour(ture) by getting an extended tour of NYC! Hey, at least this time you’re warm!

 Did I miss any?