Ring Ring…Universe Calling

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“Respond to every call that excites your spirit.” -Rumi

I love this quote. I love many quotes from Rumi. I can connect to them. But this one, can I say, really excited my spirit.

There are a few callings that have been pending for me lately… becoming a yoga teacher and writing a book are the two loudest ones at the moment. And I am sure many more will come. But those are the two currently that the universe is putting in motion for me and I there are times where I question myself, and I ask myself, “Am I really supposed to do those things?!” And then I find myself getting down or discouraged because certain things are not quite in order and I want to do these things right now! Then, I saw this quote. It was like my permission from the universe and it sent electricity through every cell in my body and immediately raised my vibration.

I believe that I have daily callings and life callings. Many of my life callings I feel I am putting into action now or preparing to put them in action, and I believe that more will continue to be revealed to me. As for my daily callings, sometimes they stay the same each day and sometimes they change. Sometimes my calling for the day is to do a crazy dance, paint a pretty picture, write a thank you note, smile at a stranger,  take my pups to a new dog park, stand on my head in yoga, clean the house, call an old friend, smell a flower, have a dance party in my car, have a movie night with my hunnie, swim in the ocean, or just simply rest. Sometimes it is several of those callings in one day. The point is, they all excite my spirit and I think that aside from creating awareness in our mind and space in our hearts, we are here to respond to the callings that excite our souls.

Another thing that excites my spirit is eating food and sharing it with you!

Today I have two salads that are bound to excite your spirit, that’s for sure. They aren’t your ordinary greens and lettuce type of salads, but they will certainly raise your vibration of your taste buds and your body will be thanking you over and over again.

The first salad is the Southwestern Sweet Potato Salad that was inspired by twopeasandtheirpod.com. The colors were like one bug party in my salad bowl and the taste was delicious! I definitely had seconds!

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You Will Need:

4 medium sweet potatoes, peeled & cut into 3/4 inch slices

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt & pepper, to taste

1 ear of sweet corn, husked or frozen corn

1 15oz can black beans, rinsed & drained

1 red pepper, diced

2 green onions, chopped

1/2 cup cilantro, chopped

2 avocados, pit & skin removed, chopped

juice from 2 limes

salt & pepper, to taste

To Prepare:

In a large bowl, toss the sweet potato slices with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Place the sweet potatoes on a grill over medium heat. Cook until tender, about 8-10 minutes on each side. When the potatoes are close to being finished, place the ear of corn on the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes, rotating the cob so all the sides are cooked evenly. I only had frozen corn, so I steamed my corn separately in a pan on my stove. Let the sweet potatoes and corn cool to room temp.

Cut the sweet potatoes into cubes and place in a large bowl. Remove the corn kernels with a sharp knife from the cob. Put the corn in the bowl with the potatoes. Stir in the black beans, red pepper, green onions, cilantro, and avo. Squeeze lime juice over the salad and stir until combined. Season with salt & pepper. Serve & enjoy!

*Salad will keep in fridge for up to 2 days.

If you are not in the southwestern mood, this next salad may be for you. It is the Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Peas, Avocado & a Lemon Basil Dressing, also inspired by twopeasandtheirpod.com.

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You Will Need:

For the Lemon-Basil Dressing:

3 tablespoons olive oil

3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon honey or agave or maple syrup

1 garlic clove, minced

1 tablespoon fresh basil, finely chopped

Salt & pepper, to taste

For the Salad:

2 cups water

1 cup quinoa

2 teaspoons olive oil

1 small bunch asparagus, about 15 spears, cut into 1-inch pieces

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 cup frozen peas

1 avocado, chopped

Salt & pepper, to taste

1/4 cup basil, chopped (optional)

To Prepare:

In a small bowl, combine the dressing ingredients. Whisk to combine or shake up in a jar or container with a lid. Set aside.

Add water and quinoa to a saucepan and bring to boil over medium heat. Boil for about 5 minutes and then turn the heat to low and simmer with lid for 15 minutes, or until the water is absorbed.

While the quinoa is cooking, cook the asparagus. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the asparagus and fresh lemon juice. Cook until tender, about 5 mins. Stir in the peas and cook for an additional 2 minutes.

In a large bowl, combine quinoa, asparagus, peas, and avo. Pour the dressing over the salad and stir until evenly coated. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in fresh basil if you choose. Serve and enjoy!

*I topped my salad off with shredded zucchini I had leftover from another recipe and some shelled hemp seeds. Also, I made this salad again the next day (because it was so tasty, everyone ate it right up!) but I also added some broccoli into the skillet with the peas and asparagus and mixed to together with quinoa. Just as tasty! Feel free to add whatever your tummy is telling you it needs! Just because there is an ingredient list and instructions, doesn’t mean you can’t step outside that and get a little crazy! Whatever excites that beautiful spirit of yours, get it on, my friend!

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Light & Love,
Amanda

Squash Macaroni and Ch-ch-cheese with Peas

‘Tis the season to be rainy! La la la la la…It’s rainy season here in South Florida and nothing makes me want to curl up with a bowl of comfort food more than when the Earth is getting its cleanse on! I always loved when my mom made her home made macaroni and cheese dish for my three other siblings and I during my childhood. When I decided to eat plant-based, I must say, that there was a concern for how I was still going to be able to feed the macaroni and cheese cravings, among the other desires for the masterpieces that my superwoman mother whipped up in the kitchen. However, I trusted that I was not the only vegan eater in the world that loved a good bowl of mac and cheese!

One of my reasons for starting my own blog was motivated not only by the urge to want to interact and share my energy with like-minded individuals, but to follow in the foot steps of my fellow bloggers that came before me. I have spent a lot of time before this reading, searching, and identifying with so many other creators of blog pages, as well as applying the information I gather into my own life and feeling fantastic about it! Thank you for your gracious energy, my fellow bloggers out there! My soul bows to yours and I only can hope that I can be of the same inspiration to someone else! Having said that, many of my blogs will incorporate recipes, as I have mentioned before. Some of those recipes may come from other blogs, in which I will include the resource. My first recipe comes from one of my favorite blogs, www.celineeatsavocados.com. She has fantastic recipes, funky ideas, and inspiring info on her blog. This recipe is my favorite animal and earth friendly meal that I have come across, yet. And, I had a blast making it! Remember, I am all about playing and having fun, too!

I give you Squash Macaroni & Ch-ch-cheese with Peas

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For this noodle & cheese fest you will need:

1 cup uncooked pasta (I used gluten free quinoa macaroni noodles, but any will work)

3/4 cup roasted squash of some kind (I used an acorn squash; Butternut or Kabocha would be fine, too)

1/4 cup Earth Balance butter

1/4 cup veggie stock

3 tablespoons nutritional yeast

1/3 cup peas (frozen or fresh)

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon fresh thyme (I ended up using the ground thyme and liked it much better; more functional)

1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)

 

Preparation:

Roast your squash first. I cut mine in half and scraped out the seeds. I roasted my squash for about 40 mins. It is finished when you can stick a fork into it and pull it out clean. I also poured 1 inch of veggie stock in bottom of the pan that I roasted squash in to help it roast with some flavor. While squash was roasting, I steamed my peas (6-7 mins) and boiled my pasta. I let pasta boil just before they were timed to be done.

Ch-Ch-Cheese Sauce:

After roasting, I scooped out the squash (save the outer skin of squash, will use later!) and put required amount into a pan to keep warm on stove. I then added my butter, nutritional yeast, thyme, and veggie stock and stirred until the consistency of my preference. I found that I added a little more nutritional yeast because that is what gives the cheesiness to the sauce. Yum! Then I added my peas and noodles all into the pan with the squash sauce and gently mixed together to cover all the pasta noodles evenly.

Now the fun part! Remember your squash skin you saved? Well, that is your BOWL for the macaroni and cheese with peas! No cleaning any extras dishes than you already have to! I told you there would be fun in this! Scoop your macaroni and peas mixture from the pan into the squash and enjoy with a few sprinkles of the paprika and red pepper!

Light & Love,
Amanda