Wednesday, March 23, 2016 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Kettle Batch

Kettle Batch. I saw these words on a menu at a restaurant resently. It is the perfect description of the past year of our lives. Throw in the kettle a batch of life, change, new experiences, transformation, deeper faith, new famfriends, and a whole lot of God and you have a rockin' awesome recipe of thankfulness that can't be written in just a few words. God's grace is worth singing about and only He offers a new song when life-experiences come your way. The kettle batch comes to perfection when you allow God to work and you live in His steps. The journey is still before us and the roads are yet to be traveled. Ingredients are still being measured and the bowl is still needing stirred; so pickup that ol' wooden spoon that will one day find newness of life in fresh smelling completion and stir with all your being. God is good all the time; you are always loved; and coffee and chocolate are still the comfort foods of choice. 

Hugs, Happiness and most of all, Joy!

Tuesday, April 28, 2015 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

The hope of it can be as tender as raw eggs...

Today, yes, even today, I had to explain once again the amazing difference between purchased from the store and having your very own hens that lay amazing eggs. I can go into all the scientific, biological, physical benefits of having your very own homegrown eggs, but why? That isn't what this is about anyway...the bottom line is...they are sooooo delicious and fantastically yummy! So professionally written I know, but I promise that once you have had a homegrown egg cooked just the way you like it, then you are hooked forever. 

As for me, I love eggs, cooked any way, but sunny side up...then you have my attention. I have a wonderful Tupperware microwave egg maker that makes three eggs just right for everyone else and I can make enough for two people at a time, up to ten, pop them in the fridge and we are set for several days. I boil a batch for salads on Sundays and then we have them for the week. I am not the best peeler so when they come out just right, then I am a happy southern gal and my grandmother is looking down from heaven smiling at her girl I am sure lol. Now if I could make her potatoes the way she did...

 Then sometimes the shells might not peel just right. That is the way our faith might be. Shaken. Cracked. Scrambled. Torn. What is missing? Why are are feeling our faith is like these delicate eggs? Maybe our faith isn't matured, grown in the Word, watered with prayer, boiled with the gathering of the saints, then set with the foundation of the Holy Spirit in knowing that Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior. In all of that Hope is woven like a tapestry of fine stitches sewn into a beautiful fine linen to make a precious picture of embroidered cloth. Hope is the evidence that we know the best is yet to come and the shells of what is inside of us is living and going to grow and bloom. Faith. Christ.

Romans 15:13 says,
"May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing with hope."

Bubbling over. Experiencing Faith. Filled. Overflowing. Believing.

Though the egg starts as a fragile item within the palm of our hands, easily crushed, as believers in the palms of the hand of our Heavenly Father, we are protected and matured if we will trust, obey and know Him. I love that. Joy. Peace. What more can be his Word to find out...

Hugs, Rita
Saturday, April 11, 2015 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Rita's Iron Skillet Gluten Free Banana Bread Recipe...Add the vanilla ice cream please!

Have you ever come home on a Friday afternoon, got a few chores done and then thought, "Something warm and a bit chocolaty would be every so good!" Well, I looked in the pantry and saw three bananas and some rice flour that would be perfect to make some delicious banana bread. Using my iron skillet collection that came from my mother and her mother is my favorite items to use, so here is the recipe.

Rita's Iron Skillet Gluten Free Banana Bread

Cooking Spray (flour free)
2/3 cup sugar or sugar substitute
2/3 cup butter, melted or apple sauce
3 eggs, beaten
3 ripe bananas, mashed well
1 1/4 cups fat-free buttermilk
1 teaspoon real vanilla
2 1/4 cups gluten free rice flour
1/4 brown sugar blend
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup coffee, prepared 
1/4 cup chocolate chips, optional

Heat oven to 450 degrees. Spray iron skillet generously with cooking spray. Put all ingredients into an electric mixer and mix together well. Pour into iron skillet and bake until knife inserted in center comes out clean. I put chips on one side because believe it or not, not everyone in my home likes chocolate. However, for those curious why I don't add nuts, I am allergic, but also they are high in fat, good or bad for you, I don't want the calories...I would rather have the chocolate calories lol!

Hugs, Rita

Friday, March 20, 2015 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Momma Rita's Mustard Style Franks, Beans and Kraut Recipe!

What's for Supper? Well, that is what I often splash across twitter from time to time and add a photo like the this one above. It is almost nightly too! This recipe was inspired literally in the grocery store this very afternoon! I rarely, super rarely, get off my two-week calendar menu that I shocked myself! However, I was wanting "hotdogs!" Seriously?! Me!?

 As I was picking up the necessities I needed, I thought of the this recipe from probably twenty-five years ago that included hot dogs, bake beans and kraut. I thought through the process of how I could make it healthy, checked my budget, and set off to get the items I knew I did not have at home.

 The recipe is very simple:
1 package Gluten-Free low fat Hot Dogs, sliced 
(which came recommended by two guys working the meat counter 
because I don't buy hot dogs lol)
1 can of kraut, drained well
1 large can of Vegetarian Baked Beans, drained
1 large sweet onion, diced
1 Jalapeno pepper, chopped
1 teaspoon brown sugar blend
1/2 teaspoon of the following:
cilantro, black pepper, garlic powder, oregano, parsley, ground mustard
3 Tablespoons Honey Mustard

Saute onions in iron skillet on high until brown.
Add hot dogs and slightly brown them. 
Mix together kraut, brown sugar and spices.
Pour beans over the onions, hot dogs.
Spread the mustard evenly over the bake beans.
Spread the kraut mixture on top.
Bake at 450 degrees for 1 hour.

The meal is complete with Gluten-free Sweet Yellow Cornbread...
To make this a bit healthier, I use applesauce instead of oil!
You can do this in any dessert recipe as well. I never use oil in my baking.

 Open a small piece of cornbread and add 1 cup of the Franks, Beans and Kraut on top. Delicious! I was very pleased with the combination of spices and flavors. Much better than our usual Friday night leftovers lol.

Another Tid-Bit-Tip:  The key to weight loss and living healthy is portions. Trade your plates and bowls in for smaller ones. Go from 10" to 8" plates. Then look at your bowls, go smaller. Do things gradually for your family so you don't create stress for them...or maybe they won't even notice the change. A friend of mine even uses smaller silverware so that she takes smaller bites. Whatever works best for you.

Hugs! Rita

Thursday, March 12, 2015 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Italian Black-eyed pea and Bean Pasta Salad Recipe

 I love to cook! I tease everyone all the time that I really don't like to cook, but, seriously...I love the organization of it all. I take recipes, the sale papers, coupons and prepare my menus for two weeks at a time. Then I know what I have the pantry to freezer as well as what we are having for the days ahead. I may tweak the recipes or plans a bit, but ninety-percent of the time, I stick to the plan. So, I would say it's the organization of it all that I love the most.

This Weight Watcher's recipes was on the calendar the other night for supper. Now, I don't eat Barley so I knew I would have to make the one substitution. I did make a few other substitutions and created a dish that could be ate cold or hot plus have a bit more "stick to your ribs" consistency to it than this recipe had in it without changing the calorie value very much.

First, I prepared gluten-free pasta.
Then I added 3 Tablespoons of fat-free Italian Dressing to the pasta.

Then I peeled, diced one sweet onion, 2 gala apples,
shreeded 1 carrot, 1 each green and red bell pepper, chopped, and sauteed them until tender.

I drained and rinsed 2 cans each of black eyed peas and great northern beans, mixed them together.
Then I added 2 diced jalapeno peppers. 

Mixed the bean mixture with the onion/apple mixer and
add 1 teaspoon each of black pepper, minced garlic, dried cilantro, dried parsley,
dried oregano.

Mix the sauteed mixture with the pasta and toss. 
Serve immediately with shredded Parmesan cheese or pop it in the fridge for later.

Ta-da! Supper is ready!

I challenge YOU to take a recipe and make it your own!
During the winter months, you may have the ingredients in the freezer or in a can...
Don't limit yourself to what a recipe calls for. Try to stay close to fat-free and gluten-free as well as low in calories...
How much fun can cooking be if we make it fun and creative...


Wednesday, June 25, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

My new traveling Art Journal Supply Case!

Art Journaling has been a passion of mine for a few years now. However, I have needed a way to carry certain supplies with me.

I came up with using thus stackable unit I had on hand. I took two containers raft our raspberry tea mix comes in for my pens and watercolor pencils. Then I added a piece if newspaper, index cards, a used gift card to spread the gesso I added to a recycled makeup pressed powder container, added another to use for water, and a few other supplies I needed were tucked into my boxes. 

Everything I needed to travel and fit into my coffe shop bag of arts and crafts!

Let the art travel! Let the fun roll! 

Hugs, Rita

Saturday, June 7, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

High Five for Rockin' it Healthy with Portions...

Meal portions was the topic of conversation at our Rockin' it Healthy workout this week! Try these tips when serving a meal: 

(1) Grab a smaller plate, 8", and a smaller bowl, 1-1 1/2 cup, next time you eat a meal! 
(2) Don't put the serving bowls on the table, leave them on the stove/counter OR better yet, serve up the meal and put away the food. 

The bottom green plate is a ten-inch plate. The blue plate is a nine-inch plate with the pretty flower shaped plate an eight-inch plate. At our house we once used the nine-inch plate most often. Now, both larger plates looks like serving platters compared to our change in eating. We no longer use larger plates and never place platters of food on the table. ((photographs were taken sitting the plates on the floor of the gym where I was leading the class...))

When considering what you are going to put in a bowl, like cereal, place your fist in the bowl. My husband, Jerry, shared this point. If you are having cereal, a fist serving, one-cup, isn't much, but that is a serving of some healthy serving. I asked those attending our Rockin' it Healthy workout group what might they add to that cup serving to fill up that smaller bowl. Their answers were creative and healthy! They said to that serving of cereal or even oatmeal they would add frozen grapes, sliced bananas, raisins, diced apples, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, peaches, pears, and the list continued. The bowl was overflowing with goodness.

Consider this also after an evening meal...

(3) Make to-go plates of leftovers for the next days lunches or for the freezers so meals will be ready for days you just don't know what to fix. 
(4) Turn off electronics at mealtime. 
(5) Plan an after mealtime activity as a couple or as a family like a walk around the block, tennis at the park or chalk on the sidewalk. 
Try pictures...
Thursday, March 27, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Crocheting with T-shirts

Each month, I attend the Cullman Fiber Guild meeting where we learn a new skill or technique. This month, it was...crochet t-shirts...

If you know, then you know anything to do with repurposing or recycling, I am in my happy place. The reality shared by our instructor is also truth. In the days past, people used every scrap as a necessity because it was all they had.

I love crochet so using t-shirts wasn't new to me, but I did live the way we were taught to bind the yarn as well as cut it for use.

I also had a bit of too much fun lol! Bo Dereck...a "10"! lol 

The finished beach theme rug for my bathroom! Loving the bright sun themed colors! 

Our cat Priscilla agreed the crochet rug was the perfect touch for our space . 

Now, I am onto my next crochet t-shirt project! I really enjoy fiber and crochet, then added to these, repurposing and recycling, God has opened a new vision of opportunity. Where there is value, there is a treasure. That is how I see handmade creations. A blessing it is to use my hands to make something from an item otherwise would have been discarded. 

Hugs, Rita

Monday, January 27, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Drinking the water...

There are two secrets to reaching your goals! Planning and Tracking! It is true in every area of your life from daily living to voting in elections. 

This chart is my way of pacing myself to reach the eight glasses in eight days if water in my 40DatCgallenge. 

I use to drink water ALL the time but I turned to coffee for comfort on these cold days and enjoyment. Now it has hurt my physical health and I need hydrating. Time to pace, plan, prepare...

Day one...50/50 on decaf/caffeine coffee. Working on the water. We have an intense running plan this week getting trained for the 1/2 marathon so water it is. Join me in drinking more water!!!


Sunday, January 26, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Water ((Gulp))

Something happened this to me in the year 2000! I accepted a dare, a challenge of sorts. Her name was Renee, I think it was. I was in the hospital and this lady found out I had never drank coffee. She challenged me to try it, but not just a taste. She sat several cups in front of me with a variety of creamers, sweeteners and then two pots, decaf and regular. The rest is history. I have never turned back. Then last winter, we started running. I didn't notice it as much at first, but then this winter, it has become very frustrating.
My fingers from the middle knuckles to the tips were freezing, turning white. Then when I got warm again, they turned bright red before returning to normal. It didn't matter what I did, nothing helped. Finally, I posted a photo online of them as a "OMGosh! Check this out!" as I was posting my whereabouts on FourSquare. Someone came back to tell me that it was an actual problem that could get serious. WHAT? No... Well, it is true, it could.

I found out there is very little that can be done that I am not already doing, imagine that. Gluten-free diet, check. Cut out sodas, check. Plenty of sleep, check. Exercise, check. Then it said, eliminate caffeine. WHAT? No... yes. It seems that I am getting dehydrated, more so because of this condition, which is causing the circulation to not make it to my fingers and toes in colder temperatures. It is an auto-immune problem which is a sub-diagnoses of what I already have, Gluten Allergy. 

It was this week that I sat in my Weight Watchers meeting, right next to a dear lady who has become a sweet friend. When she shared her goal for this week, I almost choked. She simply said, "I'm going to give up coffee this week." I quickly replied, "You don't have to share; nobody is making you! So you might want to rethink this!" She was serious. Then I was confronted with this. Maybe it's time I took this seriously. So, today, I went 50/50. I went half decaf all day. I don't drink anything but coffee every chance I get. I use to drink water a lot!! I don't drink flavored coffees anymore because it got to hard to explain to a bistro how I loved my flavorings while still keeping it skinny, yes, that is term for coffee. 

So, I found this challenge on Pinterest and have accepted it...40 Days of Water! Although a bit of her focus is on a great project, she does give you a guide to get your daily living focus on drinking more water. Now, don't panic, it is a gluten-free site, however, it has some really great points focused specifically on read the following excerpt from the site and check out the rest of her 40 Day Challenge! Join me in this simplistic 40 Day Challenge and maybe you will move to water from something else...on January 1, 2011, I gave up sodas for 30 days, that was 283lbs's do this!

Hugs, Rita...

What are 5 ways GF folks can get more water into their daily routines?
  1. Carry a reusable water bottle with you at all times! If you have water in front of you, you will be more likely to drink it.
  2. Add fruit to your water to make it more fun. There are even special water bottles out that let you put fruit in the bottom so it will infuse the water as you drink it. (Check out these tasty infused beverages: Watermelon CoolerLemon Mint Water,Berry Lemonade, and Cucumber Water)
  3. Add some bubbles. Try sparkling water for a treat, just be sure to get a brand with no artificial sweeteners or flavors.
  4. Drink up first thing in the morning. As soon as you get out of bed, guzzle down a glass of cool water. Start the day hydrated!
  5. Set a reminder on your smart phone. Every time the alarm goes off, drink a glass of water!
Sunday, January 19, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Roasted Soy Beans are Perfect

We love these crunchy Edamame, cooked and shelled, of course, but the are also called soy beans. Until I found them bagged in my grocer's freezer section, I enjoyed them on salad bars at restaurants. Now. I buy them ten bags at a time and put them in the freezer. Why? They are a great source of protein, a great snack, listed as a power food on my daily menu, are packed with energy, plus they are simply delicious. Top them on salads, pastas, chips, or... Popcorn!

I first roasted the soy beans at 450 degrees for 20 minutes on parchment paper, sprinkling them with a little fresh ground black pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, ground paprika, and ground pumpkin. Then mixed a package of Clancy's Guilt Free Popcorn, a cup of black raisins, a cup of golden raisins, tossed it all together in a large mixing bowl. Then I roasted the batch in the oven at 450 degrees for 10 minutes. Done. I bet sunflower seeds would be great too! Hot air popcorn would be better for you and cheaper than packaged popcorn too. The point is...healthier, gluten-free, nut-free, fat-free, and...power packed! Yum totally counts!

Aldi's carries the popcorn for $1.99 a bag, but making your own is always the best...

Hugs, Rita
Saturday, January 18, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Admitting failure...

Boiled eggs. I simply love eggs. Don't even try to give me the artificial stuff or any egg whites, just eggs. I would rather have home grown, but the sweet realities of having a new crop of hens only gives a couple if fresh eggs a day. With six people in our house, we need a lot if eggs over the course of our shopping week. However, I do keep boiled eggs on hand, ready made, grab-and-go. 

BUT peeling is an obstacle for me sadly to say. My mother makes fun of me about this all the time. I have tried every method I have heard about in every pot and pan. The latest I saw on Pinterest was a total failure for me, not to mention mess. Adding baking soda to the water was to make the skin soft. Well, in one boiler it did so well the eggs were popping like was funny. 

I may never peel perfect eggs, make devil eggs, or even pickle them, but one thing is for sure, I won't have them on my thighs or serving them to my family and I still make the best egg salad too!  

Then there us my favorite just open them up, sprinkle some black pepper, dill and enjoy...the best is sunny side up...

Also, pop a sliced boiled egg with a slice of fat-free cheese on a caramel rice cake...yum! A great power boaster and protein snack... I do love eggs! Enjoy...

Hugs, Rita
Friday, January 17, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Crockpot Smokey Turkey Sausage with Sweet Homemade Kraut Recipe...gluten-free yum!

 Crockpot Smokey Turkey Sausage with Homemade Sweet Kraut Sandwiches

Last night, I wanted to make sausage and kraut, but was out of the canned kraut. So, after looking in the refrigerator And pantry I found all the fresh ingredients, plus a few extras, to make a crockpot full of goodness!

2 lbs smoked turkey sausage, sliced
1 package shredded slaw mix
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 red onion, diced
1 sweet onion, diced
2 gala apples, diced
2 cans artichokes, not drained
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 hot pepper, your choice, diced
1 tablespoon brown sugar substitute, optional
1 cup of vegetable broth 
Salt and pepper 

Spray crockpot with cooking spray, place all in ingredients inside, cook for five hours, stir well. Serve on toasted gluten-free buns topped with a bit of fat-free cheese and honey mustard and a side of sweet potato fries... Yummy!!! 

So what can you take from fridge to crockpot tonight? Let's recycle while living healthy...

Hugs, Rita
Monday, January 13, 2014 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Gluten-Free CrockPot Tuna Casserole

2 cans tuna packed in water, drained
1 package glutenfree spaghetti pasta, cooked, drained 
2 cans mixed vegetables, drained, rinsed
1 jar mild salsa
1 clove garlic, minced
1 each green bell pepper, red, diced 
1 jalapeƱo peppers, minced
Salt and pepper
1 cup vegetable broth

Spray CrockPot with cooking spray then layer all the ingredients. Cook on warm for about 6 hours. 

It is fun making up recipes that are not only healthy but also delicious! 

Hugs, Rita

Sunday, September 22, 2013 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Totally Rockin' Awesome Chicken Salad!! NO Mayo!!! What's My Secret? Read on...

 One of our favorite things to eat regardless of the time of year is chicken salad! We love it alone, with a side of fresh fruit, on top of a mixed bed of green fresh crisp lettuce, with gluten-free seeded blackened crackers or with soup...I know, crazy, but I make rich and creamy cucumber soup that is delicious cold or hot that goes great with this salad...sharing the recipe later...but for now...My NEW revised chicken salad recipe...

Rita's Rockin' Awesome Chicken NO Mayo Chicken Salad

6 baked boneless chicken breasts (I bbq mine in the crockpot)
2 cups of halved green grapes
1 cup fresh diced pineapple
1 cup of fat-free cottage cheese
1 8 oz package of fat-free cream cheese
1/4 cup of sunflower seeds (I am allergic to nuts so I use these)
1 Tablespoon fresh chopped cilantro
fresh ground black pepper

Allow the cream cheese to soften to room temperature.
Pull all the chicken with a fork or dice it, whichever you want your salad to be.
Then mix all the ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.
Pepper to taste.
Serve with whatever you enjoy...
Delicious...AND fat-free!!!
This recipe feeds my 6 and then I make 4 more plates for the fridge...
Anytime a recipe calls for mayo, try fat free cottage cheese and see how it works for you...
I use it in tuna salad and egg salad too!!!
Cuts the calories and the it...
Hugs, Rita

Sunday, August 18, 2013 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

Planning Weekly Menus for Supper...

Are your tired of running through the drive thru grabbing supper? Wondering what you are going to fix next for supper? Looking at your pantry as a deer caught in headlights? Planning but then never proceeding? Wait...Me, a planner? Indeed. I have always been a planner...well, of some things. I have the gift of administration, of organization, even when my house doesn't physically show it. I have always thought this subject stems from the fact I don't like to shop and never really enjoy cooking. However, I see that the truth in this is that I love to make lists and I do have the gift for being organized. Having the weekly menus for meals posted on the refrigerator, helps my family members that depend on routine for their stability, know what is coming next. If that offers them peace and happiness during their day, then I am thrilled to give that to them. This was a meal we had where I made chicken taco salad but also offered salmon as another option for those of us that enjoy fish. 

The tools for getting started in preparing a menu is fairly simple. I begin with one or two favorite cookbooks and then one or two favorite magazines. I have a nut allergy as well as gluten. So, those two things are a given in my cooking. When I was diagnosed with a nut allergy, there was no choice to create a nut free environment within our home and property.

Then I have some notebook paper and pen. I make a list of the days with the dates out beside each; for example, Sunday, 8/18. Then skip a couple of lines. between each day of the week. I make this list for two weeks since our pay days are two weeks apart. I shop for my groceries once and usually over three stores. Write down beside these days any major events that might be coming up that you will need a simple menu to save you time so that you can create a recipe quickly or for a birthday, for example.

Flip through the cookbooks and magazines and find recipes that you would enjoy making for your family. Keep in mind activities for that day to make sure you have time to make that recipe. Then write down the titles and page numbers of recipes. As you do this, have another piece of paper available to write down your shopping list, the items you will need to make the recipe. These are the items you will need to purchase or check your pantry, refrigerator or freezer to see if you have them. Something else I do, is since I do this on Sundays, I go through my coupons to see if there are any I can use based on the items I need and the sales coming up for the week. You can build on this list adding your other stock items needed, like paper products or freezer items. I keep a very good stock of staple items so that for most recipes, I already have the items. I save money this way too.

Finally, write one weeks of menus on one side of a piece of paper and the second week's menu on the reverse side. I even place the page number with the book or magazine I got it from under the recipe name. That way I don't have to go to my calendar or other place to find the location of the recipe. It also reminds me during supper preparation that I need to lay-out meats or vegetables for the next night's meal.

If you need to do this for breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner, then you can follow these guidelines but use a week-at-a-glance calendar and post it on your refrigerator. Another idea if consider painting a chalkboard wall or dry erase board. Maybe make a bulletin board for the menus. I know that at some point, I will need to begin doing this for every meal due to the level of caregiving we are getting to. I do keep homemade apple oatmeal, boiled eggs, diced turkey ham, yogurts, fresh fruits, and everything prepared for salads made on a daily basis, but there is coming a time when I will need to create a board and make all the meals I mentioned.

At the end of the two week menu list is a treat for the whole family. It is Payday Pizza Night! I will bring home three large pizzas with all the toppings that my family absolutely loves. We have made this work for many years, but the best part of it is that in the past two years we have turned the menus into something healthier and rich in goodness rather than fat, butter, and salt. We eat less breads, starch and sodas. I only buy sugar for the bees now. Life has totally change for our family. We have lost weight, gained muscle and better health. Menus just create a peace of mind for us as well. In this world of busyness, why not make a simple change that can work for all of us.

Hugs, Rita
...and remember...the truth...
Commit your actions to the Lord 
and your plans will succeed. 
Proverbs 16:3
Saturday, August 17, 2013 | By: Rita Hutcheson-Cobbs

My CrockPot Vegetarian Eggplant Lasagna Recipe...

I had said, I would never get into Instagram! Seriously! After all THESE years, I mean I am really OLD! Why wouldn't I learn to never ever say, "Never!" Well, I am in love with what that sight can do to my photographs in less than a minute. This may not be the latest and greatest forever, but it is what I am into today...that and cooking...

Just look at the difference in these two photos. However, one thing neither photograph can do is to tell you how amazingly delicious this CrockPot Vegetarian Eggplant Lasagna is! It is also fat-free and meatless! Imagine how much better that makes the whole thing AND it can be ready by the end of the day simply by cooking on warm. Nothing has to be precooked. So, let's get cooking...

Rita's CrockPot Eggplant Lasagna

1 large eggplant, peeled and sliced
2 white onions, diced thinly
1 purple onion, diced thinly
2 gala apples, diced thinly
2 yellow squash, diced thinly
1 green bell pepper, diced thinly
1 garlic clove, minced
1 large jar of your favorite fat-free spaghetti sauce
1 medium jar of fat-free mild salsa (most are fat-free)
1 large container of fat-free cottage cheese
4 cups of fat-free shredded cheese
1 cup of fat-free sour cream 
cooking spray

First, spray the crockpot with cooking spray. Mix together onions, apples, yellow squash, bell pepper and garlic in a bowl. Then pour 1/4 cup of sauce in the bottom of the crockpot, coating it well. Place a single layer of eggplant on top of the sauce. Then cover the egg plant with half of the vegetable/fruit mixture. Pour half of the cottage cheese over the mixture. Then put half the spaghetti sauce over the cottage cheese. Put one cup of shredded cheese on top of the sauce. Repeat the layers once again. Last put the jar of salsa on the top of the lasagna. Cook on warm for six hours or until a fork inserted lets you know the egg plant is tender. Use the sour cream and remaining cheese as a garnish. Serve with tortilla chips.

Fantasticly Delicious!!! 

Enjoy...Hugs, Rita
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