Archive for the ‘food’ tag
1. Make this Jalapeno Popper Dip. It’s an easy recipe that was loved by everyone at the Super Bowl party.
2. I just cleaned my oven using this simple formula. Sprinkle baking soda on the bottom of your oven, pour on a little vinegar, wait 20 minutes, and wipe away.
3. This print would make the sweetest gift for Valentine’s Day. Or any day, really.
4. Try this hair tutorial. If you have stick straight hair like me, it was a totally new technique for making pretty waves. I tried it yesterday and the curls lasted all day long.
Hope you have a happy Monday!
Earlier this week, Nicky wrote about picnic inspiration. And I have to say, I climbed right on board and brought along my checkered tablecloth, a delectable mix of cheese, crackers, strawberries and probably some wine. Dreaming about it, I can almost feel the sweet sunshine on my face and a light breeze in the air. You know, enough of a breeze to gently blow my hair perfectly but not enough that I look like I just got out a convertible that had been traveling down the autobahn.
Wait, back to the picnic. Sorry, I got distracted by my hair. I wish I could say that was the first time that’s happened to me… today.
I think these little goodies from Anthropologie would be the perfect addition. I mean they ooze of springtime goodness. And even on the rainiest days or, more accurately for Phoenix, the most horribly hot day in July, they would flood my brain with picnic images just by sweetly residing on my kitchen countertop.
p.s. they come in two sizes, so take your pick.
I spotted this image of a gorgeous picnic on Pinterest and it got me all dreamy.
Apologizes to those of you who are buried in snow, but here in Phoenix we are enjoying highs in the 60s-70s this time of year. It makes up for our hellish 8 months of summer (kind of). The trees are full of citrus, there is sun but with a cool breeze- it is a wonderful time to be outdoors in the Valley. And what fun would it be to create a picnic in the groves like this inspirational scene?
What did you just read? Crapnut?! Yeah, that’s right! If you really want to get technical, it’s Cranberry Apple Walnut for short. But isn’t Crapnut much more fun and easy to say? Crapnut! Crapnut! I could say it all day long. I might name my next dog Crapnut.
Regardless, it is the yummiest relish to add into your Thanksgiving repitoire. Please don’t ever ever buy that scary canned cranberry again. This recipe is a breeze to make, is a great compliment to turkey, and tastes wonderful on leftover sandwiches! I just made my batch for Thanksgiving this morning. Here’s the details:
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup cranberry juice (I used cran-raspberry, you could also use cran-apple)
1 bag fresh cranberries
3 peeled, diced tart apples (like Granny Smith)
3/4 cup chopped walnuts
Combine sugar, juice, and cranberries in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes. The cranberries will pop and thicken during this time. Remove from heat and transfer to a bowl. Mix in diced apples and walnuts. Refrigerate until completely cool (about 4 hours).
Enjoy your Turkey Day!
Welcome to our weekly feature “Know Your Birdies” where every Friday a question is posed and you get to know us through our answers. This week we’ve asked… and answered: What is your favorite thing to eat on Thanksgiving?
I love mashed potatoes. I know that’s not an exciting answer, but it’s true…I love them. I love their creamy-ness, buttery-ness, and lumypy goodness. If you want to add some garlic or some cheese, I’m game. Just as long as they are still lumpy. Mmmm… I’m thinking about going to make some right now. Or, more accurately, seeing if someone will make them for me.
I love Thanksgiving side dishes so SO much. I could do with out the turkey or even the pies. Give me the green jello, rolls and sweet potato souffle. If I had to choose one dish in particular I would definitly go with my mom’s sweet potato souffle. I mean how do you go wrong with butter, sugar, vanilla, and pecans? Especially when there is soo much butter and sugar, and then a little more butter and sugar. Can’t be done, folks. Can’t be done.
Just stuff me up with stuffing. I don’t care if it is made with celery, apples, carrots, or sausage- I love it all. It must be something about the combo of spices in it or something, but it is like crack to me. And it’s almost better the next day smooshed onto some bread with leftover turkey and fresh cranberry sauce. I seriously cannot wait until next week. Oh, I’m also a big fan of apple crisp. Particularly Ina Garten’s recipe (minus the orange). Make it this holiday and you will want to kiss me for enlightening you. I promise.
What’s your must have item at the Thanksgiving meal?
I am in full blown fall mode. I decorated my home with pumpkins (spray painted white of course), took out my treasured autumn leaf from my hometown of Rochester, MN and I’ve been making all sorts of cooler weather goodies. I don’t care in the least that it is still hovering over 90 degrees here. I believe my resolve will rub off on Mother Nature soon. One of my favorite treats I’ve made so far is these cookies. I hope you make them too. (Bonus: your home will smell amazing!)
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies (adapted from allrecipes.com)
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
1/2 cup canola oil
1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon milk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
Combine pumpkin, sugar, vegetable oil, and egg in a large bowl. In a medium bowl stir together flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Dissolve the baking soda with the milk and stir in the flour mixture. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture and mix well. Add in chocolate chips. Drop by spoonful onto parchment covered cookie sheet (or spray sheet with pam)Bake at 350 for about 9-10 minutes.
I think they taste best cooled!
It’s Wednesday, Hump Day, and I’m feeling sort of frazzled. In my head are a million little thoughts- from thinking of my friend’s daughter, Lily, as she recovers from surgery, to preparing for next week’s First Friday art gallery, to Claire’s neurologist appointment next week (there is nothing I dread more), to all the daily details and dramas that never cease. I need a breather, do you?
First up, you need to smile:
This is Claire, doing what we call her loco legs. She gets those jingle bells strapped to her ankle and goes to town kicking. I’ll have to get it on video someday because then you’d not only smile but laugh out loud. And yes, she points her little toes like a ballerina.
Secondly, buy yourself a little present (or me if you’re feeling really generous):
Heart Coffee Scoop by Beehive. There are few worldly things I love more than coffee.
Next, feed your face. Make these easy treats. And then share them with a friend!
Then, ponder this product. It’s genius! Why did I never think of inventing this? (Random Nicky fact- I still bathe Claire in the kitchen sink. She’s three. It’s getting kinda tight in there. But when you have a toddler who can’t sit and are waiting on insurance to send you a bath chair, you do what you gotta do!)
Lastly, think of something lovely.
Even better, listen to the song. I bet it will make your day better. As it has mine.
I can’t think of a better way to kick off the week than sharing my favorite new recipe. I’ve probably made it six times in the last couple months and everyone loves it! My mom even asked for the details and made it for my dad after trying it at my place. It features everyone’s favorite hot sauce, Sriracha. I honestly cannot get enough of that stuff. I even blend it with mayo on my sandwiches, yum. Anyway back to the food at hand, an added bonus is that this recipe is super healthy too. I got the idea from a link on Pinterest (where else?!) and just tweaked it slightly. Here’s the dish!
Spicy Peanut Noodles w/Chicken
5 TB crunchy peanut butter
1 and 1/4 cup chicken stock
1 TB Sriracha hot sauce (find it in the Asian food aisle)
2 TB soy sauce
2 TB honey
2 cloves garlic, minced
Combine above ingredients in a saucepan. Simmer over medium for 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce is blended together and thickened.
8 oz fettucine pasta noodles
Prepare according to directions. Drain. Add to saucepan of peanut sauce and toss well until coated.
1/2 TB canola or vegetable oil
5-6 chicken breast tenderloins*
juice of 1/2 lime
1 TB Sriracha hot sauce
1 TB soy sauce
1 clove garlic, minced
1 and 1/2 cups broccoli slaw
1 and 1/2 cups shredded carrots
1/2 yellow onion, cut into thin strips
Add oil into 12 inch skillet. Add chicken to pan. Drizzle lime juice, Sriracha, soy sauce and minced garlic over chicken. Saute until cooked through, flipping as needed. Remove from pan and chop into 1/2 inch pieces. Add veggies to pan and saute for a few minutes until tender crisp. Add diced chicken back to pan and toss together with veggies.
*I used my trusty bag of frozen chicken tenderloins. I sauteed them until they thawed slightly and then drizzled them with the rest of the ingredients.
Assemble the final dish by dividing peanut noodles and chicken/veggie mix into bowls. Garnish with chopped cilantro, lime wedges, more peanuts- whatever you like!
I really hope you try this recipe out in the coming weeks. Let me know if you do!
I love a good homemade gift. There is just nothing like giving or receiving something that requires time, thought, and heart behind it. Some of the most treasured possessions I have are homemade- a painted rock from my grandma, a baby bracelet made out of silver spoons from a great uncle, and a blanket my mom stitched while pregnant with me. For the last few years, my family has even brought this concept into our holiday gift giving. We draw names and stick to a $20 budget, which creates a great opportunity to make things by hand. I even taught my hubby how to DIY a pretty patterned tray for my mom one year! Since the season of gifts is fast approaching and I have quite a few upcoming birthdays and events, I thought I’d share a few ideas that were catching my eye lately.
Fort Kit- Customize a cotton pouch and include a sheet, flashlight, rope, clamps and glow sticks! So cute and clever. I just may do this for my nephew.
Salted Caramel Sauce and Cookie Dough- Edible items always make lovely housewarming gifts. The first is a simple but delicious caramel and the second idea is to pre-make your favorite cookie dough and wrap it up in paper printed with the recipe. Fun!
Cork Letters- these would be a easy and beautiful gift for a friend, mom, or teacher! Just buy a cardboard or thin wood letter from the craft store, arrange and cut wine corks to fit (I have a ton of these saved for a rainy day), and hot glue. You can attach a bracket to the back for display, tie a ribbon to hang, etc. A ton of ways to customize this one!
Readers- do you have any favorite homemade gift ideas?
Welcome to our weekly feature “Know Your Birdies” where every Friday a question is posed and you get to know us through our answers. This week we’ve asked… and answered: What is your go-to snack?
Oh, how I love snacks. Pretzels, chips & salsa, cheese & crackers… I love them all. And it should be noted that I always go salty over sweet. I am even that rarity that needs something salty after eating something sweet. But if I am completely transparent, my honest-to-goodness go-to snack is… popcorn. Maybe it was my years of working at a movie theater, but it’s true that I am a popcorn snob. I like it fresh, hot, buttery with the proper amount of salt (my husband does this to perfection). Healthy popcorn doesn’t do it for me; I view it as a waste. Shoot, all this popcorn talking has me craving some munchies.
I don’t have a go to snack. I don’t keep a lot of snack foods in our house much to my husband’s disappointment. If I get in the mood for a snack I usually eat leftovers or cereal. How is that for the most boring answer ever?
I’m a fan of sweet and salty combos. So my must have snack is usually a trail mix that I make up by combining all sorts of nuts (my faves are cashews and almonds), dried fruits (like mango and cherries), and dark chocolate chips. Sometimes I get crazy and throw in some coconut shavings, pretzels, or cereal pieces. I keep it all in a big glass jar in my pantry for easy access. Another snack I can’t live without is Bonnie Corn, named after my grandma. It’s just popcorn mixed with all sorts of things ranging from M&M’s to peanuts to candy corn. It’s quite exotic.