Vegetarian Quesadilla

I like to serve my family vegetarian meals a time or two a week.

1- Because they are cheaper

and

2- With the garden coming in, I need to use up some of these veggies!

 

Vegetarian Quesadilla- SouthernGalsCook.com

Here is what you will need:

Vegetarian Quesadilla- SouthernGalsCook.com

8- 8 inch tortillas

2 tbsp butter

2 tbsp your favorite cooking oil (I used bacon grease, but you can use e.v. olive oil or butter)

1 cup shredded cheese (I used what I had which was mozzarella and colby jack)

1 medium sweet onion- diced

1 medium summer squash- diced  **Surprise!** (Don’t worry! My kids and hubby didn’t notice! They just kept saying “Mmmmm! This is good!”)

1 medium green pepper- seeded and diced (I used half of the large bell)

15 oz canned black beans- rinsed and drained

1 tsp garlic powder or 1 tbsp fresh garlic- minced

1/2 tsp onion powder

1/2 tsp cumin

salt and pepper to taste

Vegetarian Quesadilla- SouthernGalsCook.com

1. In a skillet over medium high heat, begin to saute your onion in bacon grease.

Once your onions began to look translucent…

Vegetarian Quesadilla- SouthernGalsCook.com

2. …add bell peppers. Saute for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. You will notice that the peppers will start taking on a “tender” appearance.

VQsquash

3. Add your squash. Stir and continue to saute your veggies. Season lightly with salt and pepper. I find that these veggies taste better when seasoned while cooking.

VQbeans

4. When your veggies are tender and your onion is almost transparent, add your beans, garlic, cumin, and onion powder. You will also add a little more salt and pepper, as well as a couple of tbsp of water or broth (chicken or veggie). The beans are very starchy and the liquid helps to loosen your mixture a little. Taste for seasoning and adjust as you like.

5. Stir and let simmer on a low heat while you begin to prepare your griddle for quesadilla magic.

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6. Over medium high heat, melt a 1/2 tbsp of butter (I found a half tbsp was enough for 2 quesadillas). put down your tortilla to coat with butter on one side. Add 1/2 cup of your bean mixture to one half of your tortilla. Cover with 2 tbsp of cheese. Fold. Allow to cook for about 2 minutes or until your tortilla is golden brown. Carefully flip and brown the other side.

Serve with your favorite dressings. We had sour cream and garden tomatoes. SO GOOD! You could add cilantro to the bean mixture— if you like that sort of thing. *gag* You could also add mushrooms, corn, zucchini, jalapenos… This is a great way to use some of your garden veggies.

Yum

Even though my kids are good eaters, they are funny about squash. They LOVED these and wanted seconds. This meal is frugal, healthy, quick (less than 20 minutes), and yummy.

CheesyQ

Queso for days!

I hope you give this a try and I hope that you love it as much as my little family did.

Let us know if you tried it and how you changed it up for your family.

We Have A Winner!

First, we want to thank all of you that took a few minutes to answer our survey questions. It will help us become a better blog and a better resource for you.

We know that it has been a long time since our last post. We have some things in the works that is taking up a lot of time, but keep your eye out for some new recipes coming up!

Without further adieu…

Winner-copy

 

Congratulations, Amanda Bryson! You have won the 2014 hardback Taste of Home Annual Recipes with over 500 recipes from real home cooks. We will contact you shortly to get your mailing information.

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Again, thank you all for your time and for your constructive criticism. We will put your ideas and suggestions to good use! You told us that you want more recipes, better pictures, and more how-to’s on gardening, canning, and freezing.  We will do that and we look forward to it.

God Bless,

 

Southern Gals

Who Are You Calling a Spelunker?

**This is a post from my blogging days at The Simple Life of a Caver’s Wife, but I’m proud of my husband and love that he is passionate about what he does, so I wanted to share this with SGC readers. :)
Who Are You Calling A Spelunker?- SouthernGalsCook.com
My hubby on the Flint-Mammoth Connection Anniversary Trip 2007

In the caving community, there is a strong understanding that you don’t ever, EVER call a caver a “spelunker”.
Dem’s just fighting words ’round these parts.

If you ask a caver what the difference is, there’s a good chance they will tell you:

“The difference between a caver and a spelunker? Cavers rescue spelunkers.”

What’s the big deal? Well, before you insult a caver, let me break it down for you.

By definition {Merriam-Webster}, a spelunker is one who explores and studies caves as a hobby.

Imagine, if you will, a couple of kids finding a cave and taking a flashlight to check it out. They are inexperienced, don’t have the proper equipment, don’t know the caving rules or techniques, and are really just in there to mess around.  They are on an adventure to have fun and discover a new world, yet they are at high risk of injuring themselves and destroying the cave with their lack of knowledge, experience, and respect.

A caver, on the other hand, doesn’t really view caving as a hobby. Instead, caving is a way of life. In each caver, there is still that curious kid looking for an adventure and need to discover, but now there is a passion; a passion that is fueled with purpose; a purpose that is grounded in respect for both the cave and the caving brotherhood.

 Jeremy Reedy in the Bare Hole in Mammoth Cave ~ Photo taken by Jackie Wheet

Believe me, following protocol does not kill the sense of adventure or the majesty of the cave.

My hubby going through the Brice Crawl in Mammoth Cave

Danger is very real. The risk of getting hurt is real.

A rescue could take many hours. That’s why there must be a level of respect for technique, equipment and the safety of one another.

A caver with purpose will generally be a part of a caving group. My caver is a member the Cave Research Foundation. The organization’s members devote some of their time to explore, map, and collect pertinent data from caves across the nation to help others understand the importance and relativity of caves to our ecosystem and our nation’s history.

Cavers also understand the need for preservation. Not only do they get to be one of the few that get to see virgin areas of these chasms, but they know that for the benefit of generations to come, leaving it the way they found it is imperative. “Take only memories, leave only footprints.” You will never find a caver-to-the-core smuggling cave formations or artifacts out of the cave. It just isn’t done. It’s code.{By the way, in a National Park, it’s also known as a federal offense.} Every precaution is taken to make sure that the cave is in the same shape it was in when they arrived.

Hooter Alley
Me on the Wild Cave Tour in Mammoth Cave 2010

So, now you know.

“And knowing is half the battle.”

cavers2

Help, we need somebody! Help, not just anybody! Help, you know we need someone, help!

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Do the altered lyrics in our title for this post sound familiar?

Yep, you guessed it!

The Beatles, HELP, released July 1965!

Okay, enough trivia!

 

We at SGC need help from our readers!  Help in finding out how we are doing on our blog.

We ask that you please take a moment to answer a few questions and express your opinion.  Please be honest, courteous and constructive with your feedback.

To thank you for your time you will have a chance to win this cookbook!  But, you can’t win if you don’t participate!

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You have until July 14 to complete the survey.  Once you have taken the survey just leave your name and e-mail address in the Leave a Comments section located at the top of this post.  (Don’t worry, it’s not a trick. We will not share your e-mail, we will only use it to contact you if you win).  We will choose, at random, a winner on July 15.

Thanks and God Bless,

SGC

READY, SET, GO …………

The Purity of a Virtuous Woman

The Purity of a Virtous Woman- SouthernGalsCook.com

1 Timothy 4:12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.

Titus 2The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children,To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

I apologize for this post being later than I had hoped.

For those of you who have ever played a large role in a Vacation Bible School, I’m sure you can understand why I took a little break.

The Purity of a Virtous Woman- SouthernGalsCook.com

And all my VBS peeps said, “Amen!”

This past week, our church was having our annual VBS with the theme of “The Virtuous Woman”. Each night, we discussed a characteristic found in Proverbs 31 and used a woman in the bible that exhibited those characteristics.

We talked about:

The Faith of a Virtuous Woman

The Wisdom of a Virtuous Woman

The Compassion of a Virtuous Woman

The Courage of a Virtuous Woman

For our last virtue, we talked about purity.

We all know that purity means clean; without contamination.

We also know that physical purity is important and discussed in the bible.

I don’t want to get off on this tangent, but I feel that I need to point this out: this is something that has been tossed aside in our society. The idea that a person’s sexual purity is disposable, unnecessary, and a curse, has crawled its way into many of our homes.

Our children can’t see a commercial or hear a song without some sort of sexual insinuation, which, if left ignored, will desensitize them to impropriety.

The world is astonished at the notion of having a relationship without physical intimacy until marriage. “What’s the big deal?!” The big deal is that God intended for your body to belong to the person you marry, when you are married, and to no one else at any other time– and that goes for ladies AND gentlemen.

I told my daughter the other day that the reason I dislike “new country music” is because southern women are portrayed as promiscuous, immodest, drunken girls with a love of drunk boys in pick-ups. Remember when being a southern lady meant having a sense of propriety and values, loving Jesus, and being loyal to family?

I know I sound like an 80-year-old grandma with a wagging finger, but I can’t help it. I have a daughter to raise and I want my son to learn to value women, to be a protector of these virtues, and posses them himself. However, it seems that everywhere we look, women are showing their bodies and men are praising them for it. On the other hand, we have aggressive women throwing themselves at men who want to do the right thing.

Please understand that this rambling of mine isn’t about legalism. If we depended on our actions for God’s mercy, we’d all be doomed.

God’s word, if we have been saved, should cause us to examine ourselves and convict us of our wrong doings. I can’t help but do that every time I study the Proverbs 31 woman. It reveals in me my impure thoughts and actions. I am a sinner saved by grace– but I’m still a sinner and will be until I lay this body down. This is why God’s grace is so needful and wonderful.

It’s also why we need to extend grace to others.

We cannot be perfect. None of us can. It baffles me that people think they can be good enough to go to heaven. Scripture teaches us plainly that no one can be good enough. God compares us to Jesus. Can any of us measure up to Jesus’s purity? No. Not one. When God looks at us, He sees a people who have sinned against Him and His Son– but if He sees the blood of His Son on our hearts, He sees us as His children.

If my kids have had a bad day and had gotten in trouble, I tell them that best thing about tomorrow is that it’s a fresh start with no mistakes. Isn’t it nice to know that it’s the same with God?

Lamentations 3:21 This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.22 It is of the Lord‘s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.23 They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

I hope that we all realize we must strive for holiness. Not just our bodies– but our eyes, ears, and mind need to be guarded. Do we protect our thoughts? Do we guard our hearts? Virtue is something that requires great effort and I pray that God will grant us the strength and perseverance to achieve such things for His honor, His glory, and to the furthering of His kingdom.

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We are linked up!

God bless you all,

The Courage of a Virtuous Woman

The Courage of a Virtuous Woman- SouthernGalsCook.com

 

Deuteronomy 31:6Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

 

This week, our church has had our annual Vacation Bible School. Each night we have talked about a few of the different character traits that are exhibited by the Proverbs 31 woman. We have discussed:

The Faith of a Virtuous Woman

The Wisdom of a Virtuous Woman

The Compassion of a Virtuous Woman

For our fourth lesson, we discussed the virtue of courage.

As a Christian there have been times when I needed to do something that probably should have been easy, but yet I found it difficult because I lacked the courage to put myself in a vulnerable position.

I have found myself to be the only Christian in a group discussion about faith, Christianity, and or/moral issues.

I’m sure you’ve been in the same boat.

What did you do?

I tried to stand up for my beliefs and share my testimony of salvation. I don’t feel like I was effective, but I will leave that up to the Lord.

Sometimes God leads us to do a work. When that work means a life change, we can get nervous or scared. It may be your spouse that has been called to the mission field and it means moving the family hundreds or thousands of miles away. You may be called to leave your jobs and stay home with your children– losing an income is scary.

No matter what the transition, change is hard on most everyone but as children of the Great I Am, we have to be willing to go when He says go.

But do not fret.

We never go alone.

He’s there with us.

Why should we fear when our help comes from the Lord?

I had a talk with someone close to me not long ago. We were discussing something that needed to be done because the Lord was leading our hearts in a direction that meant change was/is in the near future. I had already had time to get used to the idea, but my friend was struggling. I told them that I was afraid that they would be so focused on the storm {of change and of the unknown} that they would be too afraid to get out of the boat {comfort zone}.

When the Lord is calling us out of the boat, we can find our courage in Him. We must keep our focus on Him and pay no mind to the storm. When He is ready, He will still the waters and the winds. The winds and seas obey Him.

Why should we fear?

It’s a comfort to know that when fear starts to bleed into the corners of our minds, we can ask God for courage and He will give it.

We are never alone.

We have no reason to fear.

Whether you are witnessing to an unbeliever, leaving your comfort zone to work for the Lord, becoming a parent, getting married, starting a new school, whatever it is: If the Lord has led you in the direction that you are headed–

Have. No. Fear!

Be of good courage.

The Master of the Wind and Seas will go with you.

He will not fail you.

And He will not forsake you.

The Compassion of a Virtuous Woman

The Compassion of a Virtuous Woman- SouthernGalsCook.com

♥Proverbs 31:20 She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.

♥John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

♥1 Corinthians 13:1Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

I’m ashamed.

Not because I lack compassion. There’s enough compassion in this ol’ heart to share.

I’m ashamed because I have allowed the fraud of others to tarnish my idea of charity.

Do you know what I mean?

You hear of non-profits profiting heavily off of the kindness of others.

Our government assistant programs are being taken advantage of by people who are healthy enough to work, they just choose not to.

These situations maybe rare, but they are all you hear about.

So, even though compassion exists among God’s people, wouldn’t you agree that our compassion as become callused?

Well… shame on us!

Shame on me!

Shame on me for allowing the exception to become the rule.

What a wonderful opportunity we miss out on for spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Before there were food stamps, free health care, and government housing, there were churches that fed and clothed the poor. If you needed money, they would find something for you to do so you could earn a few dollars. And because there were real people {not agencies} reaching out, it was very rare for the ‘needy’ to continue taking advantage of the compassion of others. As soon as they were on their feet, they were not only providing for themselves, but they were paying forward the compassion shown to them.

In that process, the love of Christ was shining brightly in the hearts of the givers.

I wonder how many souls were saved through the living testimonies of those that reached their hands out to the needy.

Where is it today?

The more I write, the angrier I become at myself.

Compassion and charity are all just extensions of love.

Should it be so difficult to love our fellow man? Especially if we have the love of Christ in us?

I was talking to Dana the other day about adoption. We, as Christians are called out to take care of the widows and the orphans, yet how many of us consider adoption?

I have family members that have adopted. What a wonderful gift it is. I cannot even begin to describe how much our family has loved and been loved through that process.

There are so many children that need to know the love of a family.

Do you know how many 17 year olds feel doomed because on their next birthday they will be pushed out of the system? They will no longer be eligible for adoption because they will be a legal adult– an adult with no one to call them on their birthday. No where to go for the holidays.

My heart is breaking.

What if you could be that one family; the one that could give that child {or children} a soft place to fall when they are disappointed? What about when they are sick and they have no one that loves them enough to fix them a special bed on the couch, pop in their favorite movie, keep their cup filled with ice-cold Sprite and snuggle with them until their fever breaks? What about when they want to know what happens when they die, and there is no one to tell them about the love of Jesus and heaven?

I hope no one comes in here. I’m pretty sure the snot and tears would freak them out.

You know what the problem is?

Our society has taken on this idea that children are an inconvenience.

Women are told not to consider having families until they are well established. “Wait until you have your degree and your career going. A child will just slow you down.”

Children are blessing.

Period.

Psalm 127:3 Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. 4 As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. 5 Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.

I’m not saying that they aren’t a huge responsibility. I’m not saying that your life won’t change.

It will!

It has to!

But I’m telling you it is worth it.

It is worth it.

It is worth it.

It. Is. Worth it.

Every less dollar amount. Every sleepless night. Every spit up stained shirt. Every car seat in the mini-van. Every “what is that smell?!” Every “GET THAT OUT OF YOUR MOUTH!”. Every frantic trip to the ER. Every time you have to answer “why?”…

I wouldn’t trade a nanosecond of that for anything you could offer.

If you have ever entertained the idea of adopting, PLEASE pray about it until you have exhausted all avenues.

We need more compassionate women to say YES to children with no families.

We need more compassionate women to reach their hands toward the needy without hesitancy.

We need more compassionate hearts living out the gospel.

By “we”, I mean “me”… and “you”… and “us”. All of us. I know I can’t be the only one.

Without our actions, our words are just sounds… sounds that mean nothing. Just noise.

I don’t want to be “just noise”.

The compassion of a Virtuous Woman…her words would sound like the song of angels. Her actions would be like a cool breeze on a hot, humid, Kentucky summer day– bringing comfort, and beauty, and relief.

No noise. Just love.

May we all inch closer to being a Proverbs 31 woman by living the way Jesus said… having love one to another.

 

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