Tag Archives: cumin

Spicy Coconut Green Bean & Sausage One Pot Wonder


We ate this at my in-laws house over Christmas and I loved it. If you were to step in my mother-in-law’s (Cherie) kitchen, she would be the first to boast of her ineptitude in the kitchen. However, I think she’s much harder on herself than anything. So I’m here to boast of her dish and give it special spot on my recipe wall of Fame. It’s simple, quick, tasty, you can forgo the small pan to toast the nuts and make it in one pot. Plus, it has cumin, fits our eating plan & did I mention tasty? Try it.


A Year Ago: Posole & Cinnamon-Almond Danish Rolls

Spicy Coconut Green Bean & Sausage One Pot Wonder (printable recipe)

My sweet mother-in-law made this for us while we were visiting during Christmas. I made a couple changes…mainly increasing the amount of cumin, because lime/cumin/pepper flakes are divine.


1Tb olive oil or coconut oil

2 Tb blanched slivered almonds

1/2 cup finely chopped onion

3 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 Tb + 1 tsp ground cumin 1/2 tsp cumin seed

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp paprika

1/2 – 1 tsp red chili pepper

1 1/2 tsp sea salt

1 lb sausage (pastured-raised)

1 can coconut milk (full fat)

1 lb of trimmed green beans, or broccoli

Juice of 1 lime (or two if you like)

Directions: In a small saucepan, heat 1 Tb olive oil or coconut oil over low-medium heat. Add slivered blanched almonds and
toast. Constantly stirring the almonds to avoid burning (it doesn’t take long to toast). Transfer the almonds to a small bowl and set aside for later. In a large saucepan, add the remaining Tb of olive or coconut oil over medium heat. Add the onions, stirring until they get a bit soft. Add the garlic & stir (about 20 seconds). Add all spices, ground cumin, cumin seed, coriander, paprika, and red pepper chili flakes. Now, stir constantly for 30 seconds to 1 minute. The goal is to toast the cumin seeds and cook up the spices. It will get a bit dry and that’s okay–just keep stirring.

Add the sausage & salt to the pan and thoroughly stir the onion/garlic/spice mixture into the sausage. Continue stirring occasionally until the sausage is completely cooked. Pour the coconut milk in, stir. Add trimmed green beans and stir around. Turn the heat to low and cook uncovered for 5 minutes. Cover the pan and continue to cook for another 10-15 minutes (depending on how soft you like your green beans). Squeeze fresh lime juice over it and stir. Add the toasted almonds and serve.



…and my daughter LOVES dinner.  When my oldest was a baby and young toddler she loved food.  The only food she rejected by 11 months was broccoli (still does & I still serve it).  I could count on her to fill mama’s affirmation piggy bank when it came to dinner time with her moans of glee.  When she turned 18 months, I thought I had it made because she never turned to the dark side (a.k.a. the food refusal face) and I must be doing something right.  She ate veggies and I rarely gave her sweets, then it was around 22 months or so and little by little…another food was on the banned list.

Now as we celebrate her birthday week (turning three or “free”), she continues to throw a curve ball during dinner time.  As I wait for her to say something like, “This is too gross for me!”  She says, “I like my Posole!”  Yes, I train my daughter in all things food.

A.) Don’t buy eggs with cracks…to which she continued chanting in the store to check-out.

B.) “Add a little cardamom & nutmeg”…she says this during pretend play (or was it while teaching a baking class about cardamom to her papa & auntie?)

C.) I say, “this is Posole, it’s part of your heritage,”…to which she replies, “more pork.”

And to that I say, “Eat more pork and make yourself some Posole!”  It’s like eating pockets of tamales in stew form…doesn’t get much better.

Posole (printable recipe)

Recipe is adapted from Gourmet.  As I said, I find the hominy reminiscient of the cooked masa found in tamales.  This is not overly spicy.  If you avoid spicy food, then add sour cream as dairy lessens heat.  Plus, my 13 month old & almost 3 year old ate it asking for seconds & then some.


2 dried guajillo chiles

2 dried New Mexico chiles

2 cups water

2 teaspoons dried oregano, preferably Mexican

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

1/2 teaspoons ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 can of stewed tomatoes, chopped

1/2 yellow onion, coarsely chopped (3/4 cup)

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1-inch cubes (I used about 24 oz)

2 (29 oz) cans white hominy, drained & rinsed


Stem and seed chiles.  Combine with 2 cups water in a small saucepan, bring to a simmer, and simmer until softened, about 15 minutes.

Transfer chiles, with cooking water, to a blender.  Add remaining ingredients except pork and hominy and blend until smooth (use caution).

Transfer chile puree to a 4-quart heavy saucepan, stir in pork, and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover, and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1 hour.

Add hominy and simmer, covered, until pork is tender, about 30 minutes more.  Skim fat from sauce and season posole with salt to taste.  Serve with sliced cabbage, corn tortillas, sliced radishes, lime wedges, sour cream, fresh cilantro, or tortilla chips.

Promise & Spicy Pumpkin Soup

I’m sitting in my living/dining room looking outside to the glorious picture of sunshine pouring down on the golden leaves left on the tree with the faint hue of blue in the sky.  The wind is beginning to breathe big breaths upon the leaves and awaken the gray clouds to another stormy afternoon.  But in the meantime, I will enjoy what this brief window of sunshine has to offer.  With my oldest being sick the past couple days, we’ve been relegated to “operation indoors” (a.k.a. cabin fever).  And as I haven’t had much alone time with her being sick and random sleeping times as a result, then you mix in my youngest who is sleeping during the oldest awake hours…well, that equals one exhausted mama.


So yes, I will enjoy this calm before the storm.

I think it’s fitting that I live in the Pacific Northwest in comparison to the way life is and how they correlate with the seasons here.  As the wind and the rains pour down, so is our life at many moments.  It’s hard to look past the knee high puddles, shivering bodies, and wind blown hair to remember the rainbow after the storms.  And as any person living in the PacNW, they would say, “but it storms so much that the sun rarely gives light for a rainbow.”  Too true, leaving us feeling a bit hollow inside.

I like what David Bazan from Pedro the Lion says in his song, ‘Promise.’  (this was Ben and my wedding recessional)

for what i’ve seen so far, i can’t believe my eyes
and what a nice surprise
if i look up and the sky’s not there,
is there any reason i should be scared
when a promise, is a promise, i know
if i look up and the sky’s not there,
is there any reason i should be scared
when a promise, is a promise, i know

I like the certainty which comes from Jesus even when we’re walking (or trying to get up) through life’s stormy weather.  I have many things to be thankful for in this day…roof over my head, husband with a job, two daughters without major health problems, picturesque view out my window and I am my beloved’s.


Spicy Pumpkin Soup (printable recipe)

This recipe is from my friend Laura and it’s very forgiving as I have changed things here and there, but two things are for sure..1. it’s easy and 2. people will LOVE it.  Plus, for vegans & vegetarians, simply substitute chicken broth with vegetable broth.


  • 1 Tb oil
  • 1 Tb each, minced garlic and chili powder
  • 1-2 tsp ground cumin (I love cumin)
  • 1/2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/4 tsp chili pepper flakes
  • 4 cups chicken broth
  • 2 cups cooked garbanzo beans or 2 cans (15 oz) chick peas (garbanzo beans), rinsed & drained
  • 1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree or 1 can (15 oz) solid pack pumpkin
  • 2 cups corn kernels, or 2 cans corn kernels, drained
  • 3/4 cup salsa
  • salt to taste

In a soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Add the chili powder, cumin, coriander & garlic and cook for 1 minute, while constantly stirring. Add broth, increase heat to medium-high, throw everything else in, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer.

Your soup will eventually start to thicken and resemble the texture of thin gravy, which is what you want.  You can easily have this on the table within 30 minutes.  Serve it with cornbread and sour cream.  You could even use black beans or some other bean of your choice.  I prefer the chickpea, but do what you like–it’s truly forgiving.  This has a bit of Indian flavor to it and I typically keep adding in more cumin till it hits the right spot.