No MoJo and Baked Vegetable Tiers

by Joanne on July 21, 2010

It’s the middle of summer and there is a lot of lost motivation out there in blog land. Why is that?  Is the heat that draining?  Are we expending more energy doing other things like working in the garden, enjoying a swim in the pool, sipping more wine?  Well, that last one isn’t really expending more energy but alcohol will drain our energy unless we re-hydrate to make up for it.  Whatever the cause, the lack of mojo to get up and gojo is prevalent.   Solution: Get up an hour earlier and enjoy a longer summer day while taking a jog in the local park.

Another great quote landed in my inbox today by Peggy Flemming.  Remember Peggy? She was the American Champion Figure Skater.

“The first thing is to love your sport. Never do it to please someone else.  It has to be yours.” 

How true is that?!  If we aren’t doing something for ourselves, we can never really give 100%.  Find your sport and love it.

Today’s workout:

Up before the crack and down into the dungeon gym. Pumped out 35 minutes of back and arms. That completes weight workouts for this week leaving only running.

Today’s run was 10.06 miles.  The switch backs were beautiful this morning. Quiet and still except for the occasional movement in the woods, probably deer.  It was barely light out and the trees gave it an even spookier aura.  Shane came with me for 7 of those miles.  We looked for his blister last night, it was gone. Wow – he heals quickly!  To be honest, I did do a little doctoring to help it along  .   We took it slow and made 3 water stops. Thursday will be a day off in prep for the long run on Friday since Saturday will be too busy for long runs. 

My parents are coming up for the summer. They’ll be staying for about 4 weeks. Yay! Can’t wait to have them home.  Mocha will be visiting as well.


Shane could care less. 


Annnddd… on Friday, Pam (Ted’s daughter), Heman, and Heman’s mother will be stopping in for a short visit.  Pam and Heman are getting married in October so we are throwing a Jack and Jill party for them on Saturday.  Big weekend coming up!

Vegetable Tiers

A layering of all things fresh from the garden. Once again, this recipe is wide open for your favorite flavors. 


This is what I did …

  • 2 TBS Olive oil
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • 6 oz small, baby carrots, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
  • 1 TBS Italian seasoning (if you are growing herbs, use fresh basil, oregano thyme…etc.)
  • 4 cups Cannellini beans (*if using dried beans, soak for 12 hours, changing the water 3 times then bring to a boil and let simmer, covered one hour.  Otherwise, use canned, drained and rinsed).
  • salt and pepper to taste (about 1/2 to 3/4 tsp each)
  • 1 cup Vegetable broth
  • 1/2 pint cherry tomatoes, halved or quartered
  • 2 medium zucchini, sliced length wise, about 1/4” slices
  • 2 hard boiled eggs, peeled and sliced
  • 12 oz Pasta sauce
  • 1 to 2 oz fresh mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan (or a blend of Asiago, Romano, Parmesan, etc.)

Heat the olive oil over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and carrots and cook for 10 minutes. Add the crushed garlic, Italian seasoning, beans, salt and pepper and cook another 5-6 minutes. 

In a food processor, add the onion – bean mixture.  Add the 1 cup of veggie broth and puree until smooth. *Next time, I would leave 1 1/2 cups of the beans whole (not pureed). It will add a more pleasing texture to the dish.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

In a 12 x 8 or 13 x 9 baking dish, add 1/2 of your pasta sauce.  Spread on the bottom.

Add a layer of zucchini, about 1/2 the slices. Top the zucchini with 1/2 of the puree.   Top the puree with all of the tomatoes.  Top the tomatoes with egg slices. Top the egg with the rest of the zucchini, then the rest of the puree.  Add the mozzarella slices. Top with pasta sauce and sprinkle on the 1/2 cup of Parmesan.

Tent with foil and bake for 45 minutes.  Uncover and return to the oven for another 25 minutes.

Let cool 10 minutes before slicing.


Enjoy your vegetarian protein, vegetable ensemble, nutritionally sound meal. 


Ted wonders how my running power will be with all those beans.  I’m sure I’ll be turbo charged


What’s growing in your garden right now?


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    • At 2010.07.21 09:31, claudia said:

      not sure whats more gorgeous those babies or the dogs…you certainly are motivated indeed. Everything looks super here today, and put a big smile on my face…I wont be cooking much in the next month getting a new kitchen put in, but looks like lots of grilling specialities might be on our menu~ nice post thanks!

      • At 2010.07.21 11:54, Joanne said:

        Congrats on a new kitchen. How exciting.

        • At 2010.07.21 11:42, Anne @ Food Loving Polar Bear said:

          Love the quote 🙂

          • At 2010.07.21 11:59, Joanne said:

            It hit home with me.

            • At 2010.07.21 11:51, Hannah said:

              At the very least, you’re definitely not alone in your loss of motivation… although I certainly wouldn’t have been able to tell, based on that truly delicious looking veggie bake you’ve got there!

              The garden is still far from ready to harvest, but I’m hoping that there will be lots of tomatoes to come, in addition to cucumbers, snowpeas, various herbs… And we also planted raspberries and rhubarb, but they definitely won’t be ready for at least another year. Good things come to those who wait!

              • At 2010.07.21 12:00, Joanne said:

                That’s the problem with gardens, you have to wait to reap the reward.

                • At 2010.07.21 11:58, Danica said:

                  WOW ~ Can I come over for dinner? I’d even take leftovers – this not only looks amazing, it sounds amazing. I NEED to try it 😀

                  Cute puppy pics too!

                  • At 2010.07.21 12:00, Joanne said:

                    They both do look like pups don’t they? …and your welcome to dinner anytime 🙂

                    • At 2010.07.21 12:23, Monet said:

                      Yes…I’d like to come over too! That vegetable dish looks beyond good. Such cheesy, vegetable goodness! I’m glad to hear that your parents are coming to visit. Spending time with family is so important.

                      • At 2010.07.21 13:06, Gera @ Sweets Foods Blog said:

                        It’s a fact warmer days improve your mood to outdoor activities (alcohol included)

                        Good news your parents are coming! 🙂

                        The vegetable tiers look refreshing and so tempting, a boost of energy!



                        • At 2010.07.21 13:59, tanyasdaily said:

                          Tomatoes..and strawberries

                          • At 2010.07.21 17:41, kalli@fitandfortysomething said:

                            i love peggy’s quote! so true you must do it for yourself.
                            how fun to have so many guests coming to visit you. i know you will spoil them with all of your good food.

                            • At 2010.07.22 07:57, Sophie said:

                              Your dogs look so cute!! aaaaah,…ooooooh!

                              Your baked vegetables tiers look so appetizing too!

                              MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM,…what more can I say??

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