Chickpea salad recipe

Chickpea salad

 

Finally! Here’s the recipe I promised… Not sure if you can really call it a recipe though since all you do is some chopping and blending… But, ohhh it turns out so delicious!

What you need/do:

1 tomato, chopped

1/2 cucumber, chopped

1/2 red onion, chopped

1 can (8,75oz / 250g) garbanzo beans (chickpeas)

a small bunch of cilantro, chopped

1/4 cup seasoned rice vinegar

freshly ground pepper

Here’s what you do:

Chop everything and blend into a bowl, pour the seasoned rice vinegar on the salad (it’s important that you use the seasoned rice vinegar!), and let it marinate for about 10-15 minutes. The seasoned rice vinegar is so full of flavor and has less sodium and is so much healthier than regular salad dressings, you won’t even need any oil! How great is that? To me, this is a full meal as it is… But, if you have a husband or growing kids, like I do, you can mix it with pasta and add meat or chicken to it.

If you’re not a fan of cilantro (I’m crazy for cilantro!) you can leave it out completely, or you can trade it in for some parsley or even basil if you like the italian flavors.

Ohhh, and needless to say, it’s delicious with garlic bread! Nom nom…

Easy as pie! Enjoy!

XOXO Lena

Guacamole recipe

2015-03-10 13.28.56

 

Ohhh Myyy God, this is one of my all time favorites, I make guacamole at least once a week if not more, it’s just so simple to make and delicious to have around for… well, just about anything from dipping chips and crackers, as a topping on your tacos to a healthy spread on your sandwich or even on your baked potato!

This is what you need/do:

2 avocados, pitted and peeled

1/2 onion chopped

1 tomato, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup cilantro chopped

2 cloves garlic, minced

juice from 1/2 lemon

salt (I sometimes use Trocomare seasoned salt)

Mash the avocados and blend all the ingredients together and you have an awesome guacamole that will be a hit at your next party! If you like to spice it up a little, add some chopped chili to it. Serrano chili is good. But for me, the garlic does the trick for the spiciness. Enjoy!

XOXO Lena

Spring feelings in February!

 

©Lena Jolly Photography 2015

©Lena Jolly Photography 2015

It was a bit chilly but a sunny Sunday morning in Sweden, you know the kind when it’s right above freezing but then the sun peeks out and starts to warm you up a bit, so after a yummy breakfast of hot cocoa, open faced cheese sandwiches and cereals with milk, we decided to go outside and enjoy the beautiful spring weather. Both my kiddos love the outdoors and we took a walk along the Ljusnan river and we loved every minute of it.

Bumbar feb 2017

 

Oh, I just love the smell in the spring, you know when you start smelling the earth again and the melting snow, I know it’s way too early for spring to arrive yet, but still, on days like these… Mmmmmm… Deep breaths and our faces turned towards the sun… Like real swedes, lol.

Axel feb 2016 Alice feb 2015

 

Sometimes, you just need to sit by yourself and turn within…

Axel feb 2015

I’m feeling so blessed to have these two wonderful people in my life, even if they don’t always get along, (I mean seriously, what kids do?) but on days like these… I LOVE IT!

Bumbar feb 2015

 

Olle enjoyed the walk too, even with his short little Jack Russel legs he’s always first in line leading the pack, lol.

Olle feb 2015 Olle

 

Just enjoying the morning by the water… Fresh air… Sunshine… The best company… What else can you ask for? Seriously.

Axel feb 2017 Alice feb 2019 Alice feb 2017 Axel feb 2018

That was our Sunday morning… Which continued with lunch when we came back home and later in the evening we cuddled up on the couch and watched movies. Are Sundays the best day of the week? Sometimes I like to think so…

IMG_2477 - Version 3 Axel feb 2019 Alice feb 2016

If you want to see more of my photos that are for sale, please check here!

Have a lovely week!

XOXO Lena

Chili con Carne for dinner tonight!

Picture from Pinterest

Picture from Pinterest

On cold February evenings, like tonight in Sweden, I love me some hot Chili con Carne. Actually this North American dish was inspired by the meat and chile stews of Mexico. I promise you, this version will become a favorite!

Here’s what you need:

1 Lb lean ground beef (c:a 500g)

1 Medium to large onion, chopped

3-4 Cloves garlic, minced or pressed

1 Large green bell pepper, chopped

2 Tablespoons chili powder

1 Teaspoon ground cumin

1 Tablespoon dry oregano leaves

1 Large can (15 oz) pear-shaped tomatoes

1 Can mixed beans

1 Can white beans in tomato sauce

1/4 Cup fresh cilantro (coriander), chopped

Salt to season

Garnishes (suggestions follow), optional

This is what you do:

Crumble beef into a wide frying pan over medium heat, cook just until meat loses pink color. Drain off fat. Add onion, garlic and bell pepper, continue to cook, stirring, until vegetables are soft.

Stir in chili powder, cumin, oregano and tomatoes. Bring to a boil and add beans. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, for about 15 minutes, stirring often to break up tomatoes. Stir in cilantro and season to taste with salt.

Garnishes. Choose from the following, arranged in separate bowls: 1 Cup shredded cheddar cheese, 5 green onions, sliced, 1 firm-ripe avocado, diced and moistened with lemon juice to prevent discoloring, 1 cup sour cream.

You may also serve the chili with baguette or tortilla chips.

That’s it, a very easy, quick and yummy wednesday evening dinner! Enjoy!

XOXO Lena

Cooking for Valentine’s Day?

© Lena Jolly Photography 2014

© Lena Jolly Photography 2014

I just wanted to remind you about Valentine’s Day on February 14th, it’s right around the corner! If you don’t have any plans yet, don’t panic! Get the “Thug Kitchen” cook book, here, and show your Valentine your skills in the kitchen! He/She will LOVE you even more! After all, it’s the thought that counts. I can only speak for myself, but I’m pretty sure that everyone appreciates a gift that you’ve put some thought behind and show that you’ve noticed what they like, what their favorite food is…

Get the right mood by cooking up a fabulous dinner for two, set the table with a nice table cloth, candle light, lots of candles everywhere, a dozen velvety red roses and soft music in the background. You can’t go wrong!

Good Luck!

xoxo Lena

Feeling Grateful

©Lena Jolly Photography 2015

©Lena Jolly Photography 2015

God must have known that this is what I needed right now to be able to find my way back to myself… Being with my family, feeling the love from my children, seeing beautiful swedish sunsets like this one from my living room window! I feel so grateful for this experience, there’s so much love around me that could last me for an eternity it seems.

When life gets too stressful, as it sometimes can get, especially if you like me, live in a large city like Los Angeles, breaks like these are heavenly. Like a spiritual retreat. You have no choice but to wind down and get back to nature, eat food that’s good for you and just love. Love surrounds everything. I am love.

After all, Love is the meaning of life.

Have blessed and beautiful weekend!

XOXO Lena

e-Book

I just wanted to take the opportunity to remind you to check out my eBook Walking on Air. If you or anyone you know suffer from bunion pain, please get this book! It is very helpful and will show you how to get rid of the pain without surgery. In my opinion, surgery is your very last solution to the problem, since it’s not guaranteed to help and in some cases it will only make the problem worse. So please, check it out!

Ok, so that’s just a quick reminder of the book

Picture from Pinterest!

Picture from Pinterest!

But also, if you have joint pain, it is a good idea to look over your diet. A lot of times joint pain can come from eating the wrong things. Foods to avoid are wheat and sugar. Try to add more avocado, salmon, walnuts, papaya, pineapple, spinach, blueberries, turmeric, ginger and garlic. These foods have all been proven to fight inflammation and boost your immune system.

I think it’s a good idea to start with your diet and reading the eBook Walking on Air, and then go from there.

Have a wonderful thursday!

XOXO Lena

Taco Tuesday!

Tasty Taco Pizza

 

What’s for dinner? Since I love both Tacos and Pizza, I’m thinking this yummy Taco-Pizza  must be combining the best of both worlds, and it’s a healthier choice than a regular Pizza too… Yay!

Ok, here’s what you do:

  • Heat a skillet over medium heat. Add the ground beef and break it up with a fork or a spatula. Let it brown a bit before you add the Taco seasoning and then cook it for another minute.
  • Heat oven to 400F/200C.
  • Toast tortillas (the crust for your Pizza) in oven for a few minutes, then flip them over and let them toast for another few minutes, all together for about 5-10 minutes or until they’re golden brown.
  • Top your tortillas with refried beans and cheese and pop them back into the oven for about 3-5 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
  • To finish them, top them with the ground beef (you can swap the beef for chicken or turkey if you like!), lettuce, tomatoes, onions and some sour cream. You can add some hot sauce to them too if you like to spice them up a bit.

Voila, and you’re done!

Enjoy your tuesday!

XOXO Lena

Oatmeal and bananas

Sooo yummy!

Sooo yummy!

But not just any oatmeal and bananas, sautéed bananas, and it makes all the difference in the world! This breakfast is soooo good and will keep you going until lunch without a problem.

All you need is:

  • Sliced bananas
  • Heat some coconut oil in a pan and add the sliced bananas
  • Sprinkle with brown sugar
  • And finally serve it over hot oatmeal with milk (I add some chia and/or flax seeds to my oatmeal)

That’s it. Easy peasy. Enjoy your tuesday everyone!

XOXO Lena

Walking on Air!

My book, Walking on Air, finally hit the Amazon.com!

I can’t even begin to tell you how excited I am, and if you or anyone you know is suffering from pain caused by Hallux Valgus (Bunion) you should check this out. It is amazing how such simple things can make your pain disappear without surgery, honestly, I wish everyone knew. So please, spread the word!

I wish you all a wonderful wednesday!

© Lena Jolly Photography 2014

© Lena Jolly Photography 2014

XOXO Lena