Broccoli and Baebes

It's a quiet Thursday night and I'm nursing a sore throat with salt water and hot tea. It's kinda nice to be cozy in bed, listening to Mediaeval Baebes, playing Scrabble on Facebook and reading Anne Lamott.

A few days ago I was reading my new blogger friend Chaya's post at Sweet and Savory Says It All and was startled to see my name in a list of blogs she'd chosen for the Sugar Doll Blogger Award!!! Thank you, Chaya! :-)

Chaya was one of my first readers and bent over backwards to make me feel welcome in the blogging world. She provided tips and encouragement and I love her homey recipes that she makes for her beloved hubby and family. :-) I'm such a newbie at all this she had to tell me what I was supposed to do with the award. :-) So, dear Chaya, here goes! Better late than never! :-)

First I'm supposed to share 10 things about myself. Heavens!

  1. I have lived in 24 different places since I was born. 
  2. I wish I had a treehouse. 
  3. I am Canadian but have spent more of my life in the United States. 
  4. I love to travel and Turkey, Romania and Australia are at the top of my go-to-next list.
  5. My favorite author is John Buchan  and I must have Earl Grey tea when reading his books.
  6. My favorite color is red and it never fails to cheer me. 
  7. I do not like mushrooms. Nope. Not at all. 
  8. My dream house would have a library. And a secret passage. 
  9. I hang jewelry on my wall because it's too pretty to hide away until wearing. 
  10. I rediscovered the Library this year, and still can't believe they let us take books away for free.

Now I'm supposed to pass the blog along to 10 other blogs. I don't know how I'm supposed to choose just 10 - I love far too many! - but I'll do my best. The first five are blogs that cheer my heart every day, the last five are foodies who nourish body and soul.
  1. Trish at www.trishlawrence.com - Trish is one of my dearest friends and one of the bravest women I know. We met at the religious cult we found ourselves in as teenagers, and I could not have made it through the aftermath of that without her love, understanding and relentless encouragement.
  2. Jacqueline at Bliss - a brave lady in her own right, Jacqueline inspires me with the wonderful images she collects and her amazing courage. It was this post that jolted me out of a fearful cocoon and set me on a path of bravery and honesty: Do One Thing Every Day That Scares You
  3. DustJacketAttic - This lovely Aussie delights me with her collection of fashion images from around the world ranging from magical and mysterious to Old World.
  4. Lauryl - her artistry and creativity are nothing short of exquisite. From weddings to parties, her imagination knows no bounds. 
  5. Frugal Trenches - her love for the outdoors and simple pleasures is infectious.
  6. Duchess - her recipe for Ginger Chocolate Tart made me swoon and I LOVE the etching on her site. 
  7. Karine from Food Gourmand - she's honest about her flops and her successes are divine.
  8. Joanne at Eats Well With Others - she's sassy and spunky and makes me laugh every day.
  9. Confessions of a Tart - she is always real and bakes up a storm.
  10. El from Fresh - a lovely soul who makes amazing things like Creamy Chocolate and Imperial Wedding Tea Truffles
This past year has been a rough one with health issues, so I've been operating under the mantra if I put good things in, good will come of it. This year I'm determined to use a greater variety of whole grains in salads, soups, gratins, etc, and today I'm dining on a Quinoa Pesto Salad with Broccoli and Almonds.

I was inspired by Heidi at 101 Cookbooks and rummaged about in fridge and shelves to see what I had to work with.

I found red quinoa and set it to cooking in a pot of water with a bit of salt.

Then lightly steamed some broccoli just until it was gorgeously bright green.

When the quinoa was cooked, I fluffed it up and mixed it with a jar of pesto...

...then added chopped broccoli, some grated feta cheese and sliced almonds.

Deeelicious! The pesto makes it feel richer than it is, and the red quinoa, bright green broccoli and pale almonds bring color and festivity.

Quinoa Pesto Salad with Broccoli and Almonds

3 cups cooked quinoa
1 bunch broccoli, steamed and chopped
1 small jar pesto
1 ounce feta cheese, grated
1 handful sliced almonds

Combine and enjoy!


    1. That looks very healthy, I need to start eating quinoa again. By the way, I am honest about my flops too, wait til you see these hideous macarons I've been making this week!!!!

    2. OOoh thank you! Oddly enough I have a 110 things about me post ready to go out this evening! But I'll do this one on Sunday or Monday! Thank you :) I'm so enjoying reading your blog. Must update my blogroll and put you on it!

    3. That's great, Sarah! :-) I can't wait to see your "hideous macarons" - I haven't been brave enough to try them yet. :-)

    4. Seeing you rummage thru your cupboards and come up with genius little recipes demands the question: why have I not yet seen Cool Candy Cinnamonamon on here?

    5. A rocking recipe indeed-and me too recieved the same award as u from the absolutely sweet Chaya..

    6. Sounds great, Frugal!! I'll look forward to reading it :-)

    7. Oh Danyellee, I'm laughing SO hard! You know I absolutely have to write about that now. :-) Perhaps I can dig up some embarrassing pictures of us to go with it. :-)

    8. Thank you, Sugarplum Fairy :-) You deserve that award! You are so kind and encouraging - I love your posts. :-)

    9. I somehow don't share in your enthusiasm of posting the said embarrassing pictures. I'm afraid that may not aid in progressing your popularity here. It may in fact be detrimental. (I'm only thinking of you... because I care). I do however feel you could get far more creative with your food titles. I mean really, how yawningly predictable is "Quinoa Pesto Salad with Broccoli and Almonds"? Perhaps a Cha-Cha at the end would liven it up nicely. Might even tempt us unhealthy foodie types to give it a whirl. Something to mull over...

    10. Oh girl, I'm sitting here at my desk positively shaking with laughter. :-) I love you! :-)

      Cha-Cha, eh? Yes, that would bring a touch of the ol' joie de vivre, now wouldn't it? ;-)

    11. I hope 2010 brings you great healt my Danish friend :-). It is well with you. Anyhow, you must send this in to www.food52 (you'll have to sign up). Each week they have contests and winning recipes get the chance to go in a cookbook. Next week its broccoli so...get on over! LOL. Oz@kitchenbutterfly.com

    12. Yes ma'am!! :-) Thank you, Oz, I will do that this afternoon :-)

    13. I have a packet of quinoa in my fridge that I've just got to do this with! :D I love the texture of it! I hope you are feeling better and congratulations on your award! :D

    14. That's great, Lorraine! I hope you like it. :-)

      Yes - I'm doing better. Been guzzling tea all day and have a relaxing movie night planned. :-)

    15. Ugh a sore throat sounds yucky! Drink some orange juice, pop two advil and call me in the morning!

      Congrats on your award and thanks so much for passing it on to me. Reading your blog always puts a smile on my face as well. Your descriptions are always so gorgeous and your food always looks quite tasty. I am so glad to have found your blog!

      The quinoa salad looks awesome! (Doesn't broccoli photograph SO well?!?!?) Heidi is a great source of recipes. Seriously.

    16. Aye, aye Dr. Joanne! :-) I bought a bag full of oranges and am heading to bed shortly. :-)

    17. My sister lives in Bolivia at the moment where quinoa comes from... over there they grow it even for decorating purposes... :)

    18. Really, Elie? How do they decorate with it?

    19. You did well, girl. Look at how many online friends you have. That is great. It does get to be a home away from home.

      I just came to quinoa and my first try was a disaster but my second was really good. This looks like I could handle it.

    20. Thank you, dear Chaya. :-)

      I'm so glad your second attempt at quinoa worked! :-) Sometimes mine gets too soggy and I have to drain it a while before it's ready to use. Ah well :-)

    21. I haven't cooked quinoa because I don't have a good recipe to try... thanks for sharing.. I may get a packet to try it tonight :)

    22. You're welcome, Ellie! I hope you like it. :-) I have another quinoa recipe from my Mum that I hope to share in the next while. :-)

    23. hmmm! so perfect!

      but I am losing weight!

    24. I'm convinced that pesto is a secret remedy for health and countless dishes. Happy New Year to you!

    25. I think this would actually help you, laptop! :-) Quinoa is very high in protein and is excellent for keeping everything "moving." :-)

    26. I agree, Amuse!!! Every time I see or smell it I get a happy feeling inside. :-)

    27. Oh my! You lovely woman! Thank you so much for the mention!!!

    28. You are MOST welcome, Duchess! :-)

    29. Ahhh thank you so much for including me in this list! I love No. 8 - my house would so have that as well! I have the clearest picture of what kind of a library I would want. And one of the bookcases would turn to open a secret passageway. And there would be a hiding place behind the portrait! Alas, that will probably never happen. :) So great to find out those fun things about you!

    30. You are so welcome, Irene! :-) I've loved your blog from the start. :-)

      Yes!! A secret passage, a hiding place behind a portrait - these things really ought to be feasible in real life. :-)