Thursday, May 24, 2012

Top Ten Thursday

I won't even beat around the bush. I am a Pinterest addict and it's not getting any better. Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaalp.

But I DO find some cool stuff on there. And elsewhere. Mhmmmm. I'll even show ya.

1. One of the cutest outfits I've seen this week. Can I just say that I am obsessed with lace? Where do I get this dress?! And those shoes!

2. I think I have to start Taco Tuesday for this one. Burrito Tuesday. Whatever. Doooooin ittttttt.

3. Food porn. I can't call it anything else, because that is exactly what it is. The picture teases you.

4. This is terribly cute. Kitten obsession: can't stop, won't stop.

5. Blog find: Kirbie's Cravings. This woman is the mug cake QUEEN. So talented.

6. Something to never let your man watch. He might get ideas. Is it bad that I laughed hysterically? Fine, I'm still 13 yrs old. Whatevs. I did feel for her though.

7. Take me here. Pleaseeee. There is so. much. pink.

8. I have a spot in my heart for Snoop Dogg. Tell me that doesn't make you laugh.

9. Genius.

10. Is that me? Seriously. I'm pretty sure that's me as a kid. Cute little picture, guaranteed to make you smile.

It's no longer Thursday here. Guess I got a little sidetracked...
Whatever time it is where you are, hope you are having a wonderful day/night <3

Easy Peasy Chicken Tenders

What do you do when your husband dedicates his night to Xbox? And you aren't allowed.
Because there is a boys slumber party with out the sleepover part going on in my living room filled with pew pew pews and yelling, and I kind don't know what to do.
Is there a certain place where the women go and meet up?

That would be great. We could all get together. Do girl things. Take the cards and shop because you know the answer is going to be "yeah, yeah, sure whatever..." or nothing at all, and you can take the non-response as a yes.

Wine. There would also have to be wine.

Wine also goes great with chicken. Like that stuff up there. The picture might not be Pinterest worthy, but it's ready in like 10 minutes. Soooo translation: you can have dinner ready and give yourself more time to pin things. More time for online shoe shopping with the card you scored because your man agreed to hand it over unknowingly surrendered it during an Xbox session. Good thing I help you out with these things. Was that redundant? Whatevs.

Now this's kind of not a recipe. I can tell you what I used, just not how much. It's fine. You got this.

Easy Peasy Chicken Tenders
Serves 3-4 (can easily double, triple.....)

1 lb chicken breast tenerlions
A lotttttttttta gaaaalic powder
All seasoning salt
Crushed rosemary (dried)
Sage (just a few shakes)
Oregano (very little)
Tiny shakes of Paprika
Olive oil for brushing or the pan


1. Take chicken out of the package and, if you are like me place it on the George Foreman grill (which should be set to medium heat!), after heated. . (If you're using a pan, add some olive oil to the pan and heat it on medium heat.)
2. Brush the chicken with olive oil. (If cooking in the pan, toss the chicken in once the pan is heated and the oil is shiny).
3. Add the seasoning, let cook until cooked through on the bottom side, about 2-4 min (depending on cooking method and heat level).
4. Turn the tenders over. Lightly season the new side, if desired.
5. Once cooked through, remove from heat and check to make sure it is hot enough using a meat thermometer.
6. Serve immediately with wine, rice, garlic bread....all three.... Enjoy this easy recipe and get back to the more important things, like Pinterest.

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Ooey, Gooey Nutella Banana Bread

My snack. I was good and started my day off with yoga and even went to the gym. Heck, I might even go back later on today. Even though I love gym time (slightly obsessed), THAT BREAD up there made. my. day. Banana bread that made room for a gooey, Nutella topping. Bam.
I don't think I have met anyone that doesn't like banana bread. Who hates banana bread? No one? Thought so. How about Nutella? Wait, stupid Question. Come on, it's NUTELLA. I don't think you are even allowed to dislike Nutella.

Anyway, this bread. Probably not ok to eat like 3 slices at a time after a great workout (counterproductive, maybe?)............but I did. It's ok, it's healthy kind of healthy. The original recipe was. I sorta...changed it.

Regardless, you need to make it. How can you carry on with your Wednesday without it???

Good food is meant to be shared. And this is some goooooooood eats y'all.
So here's the recipe:

Gooey Nutella Banana Bread
ever so slightly adapted from here

4 ripe bananas, mashed
1/4 cup apple sauce
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp butter (I used 1 T butter and 1 T coconut oil for a fun twist)
1/2 cup light brown sugar (I used a heaping, packed 1/2 cup and it wasn't overly sweet)
2 large egg whites (Use this, or an egg and a dash of oil for more flavor)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract (I used 1/4 vanilla, 1/4 maple extract)
1/4 cup Nutella (I used a heaping 1/4 cup)
Fun idea: Throw in some chocolate chips or chop up some (DOVE) chocolate and toss it in the batter.

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In a medium-sized bowl, cream the butter and sugar. Add in the egg whites and stir. Next, add the banana, vanilla (and/or maple extract) and apple sauce. Mix everything together until well combined. Set aside.
3. Mix the flour, baking soda and the salt in a small to medium-sized bowl. 
4. Combine the dry ingredients with the wet ingredients and mix until just combined.
5. Warm the Nutella up in the microwave for about 30-45 seconds. (DO NOT overheat or it will become hard to spoon over the batter. If this happens, add a little bit of water and stir vigorously until you reach the desired consistency)
6. Pour the banana bread batter into a bread pan. Add the Nutella on top, in small spoonfuls. *Make sure you distribute evenly or you will have some slices with tons of Nutella goodness and some slices missing out on it.*
7. Swirl the Nutella with a knife and really work it in to the batter to get an even distribution.
8. Put that loaf of heaven in the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes. (I baked mine for 45 and it was still gooey enough. Next time I will try for 43-44)

Since they were included with the original recipe, here are the nutritional facts: 
Points: 4 weight watchers points plus
Servings: 13 slices
Serving Size: 1 slice
Nutritional Info: 138.1 calories, 3.8 g of fat, 24.8 g of carbohydrates, 2.5 g of fiber 1.7 g of protein
*Note: These stats are for the ORIGINAL recipe. This is not accurate for the recipe including my adaptations.

Happy hump day (;

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Broccoli Beef Stir-fry w/ Snow Peas

Today, I got my cook on. I'd had this recipe in the back of my mind for a few days now, so I decided to whip it up for tonight. I'm really glad I did, because it was delicious.

I was feeling pretty beat after braving Walmart...yes, braving...out here you don't "go" to Walmart, you brave I unloaded and watched some Prison Break (I know, I'm like 5 yrs late......) and when thinking about my GENIUS Scofield is (Really, though!), I realized my genius self forgot two being the most important. I forgot the scallions, and the meat. I blame hormones because all I could think about was chocolate and my new TCBY yogurt that tastes JUST LIKE ICE CREAM. The only logical explanation would be to go to the gym so I could stop by the store again on the way home and pick up what I had forgotten. I am a gym rat, no doubt.

Once I had everything I needed, I got started on this right away...after I chased my dog out of the woods and back home so he wouldn't run into boar, or gators near the ponds. Yep, we're in the country.

So about this stir-fry:

1. It tastes comparable to take out and is probably 1000 times healthier.
2. It was so simple to make! 20 minutes tops.

Stir-fry dishes are my new favorite. You whip up an appealing, gourmet-looking meal in 20 minutes and the only skill you must possess to do this is to be able to throw stuff in the wok. Brilliant.

Wanna make it? I'll tell ya how (:

Note: I customized the recipe to feed two, generously, and include more vegetables. I highly recommend using the original recipe or doubling this one if you are feeding a family of 3-5.

Broccoli Beef Stir-fry with Snow Peas
slightly adapted from here

1/4 cup soy sauce* (see note below)
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1 1/2 Tablespoons Sherry
1/2 Tablespoon of fresh ginger, or a few big shakes of powdered ginger
1 Tablespoon olive, vegetable or coconut oil
~.7 pounds of sirlion, fat trimmed and sliced thinly (or stir-fry strips!)
2 scallions, chopped and divided into two piles
5-6 oz snow peas
As much broccoli as your heart desires
Optional: red pepper flakes

Start off by whisking the soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch, sherry and ginger together in a medium sized bowl.

Add the meat, toss it with your hands and set the bowl aside.

Place your oil in a (large) wok. Heat on high, and let the pan get nice and hot. The oil should be shiny.

Add the snow peas and broccoli. Cook for about 45 seconds to 1 minute, until slightly crispy.

Remove the veggies from the heat, and scoop them onto a plate.

Place the wok back over the heat (add more oil if needed or use Pam), add half of the meat (DO NOT add any sauce. A little sauce that goes in with the meat is OK, but do not pour any sauce in). Make sure to place the strips flat on the wok so they are all straight and on one side. Throw in one pile of the scallions along with the meat. Sear for about 1 minute, then turn over and cook for 30 seconds more.

Remove from the heat, add the meat to the veggie plate.

Repeat the process with the other half of the meat and the second pile of chopped scallions. Again, do not pour any sauce in.

Once you've turned the steak over after searing on one side, add the rest of the meat, veggies and pour in the sauce mixture. Sprinkle with some red pepper flakes if desired.

Stir for about 30 seconds. Serve immediately. This goes great over rice! And inhale.

Note: I would use low-sodium soy sauce if possible. We did not have any on hand, so I used regular. It was a tad bit salty. It didn't compromise the flavor much, but next time I am going to put a little less than a quarter cup and up the amount of sherry or just add some water. We'll see (:

Hope y'all enjoy this as much as my husband and I did!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Change is good

As a person who is sometimes a creature of habit and afraid of change, I've realized lately I have begun to branch out and find out more about myself in terms of passions and values. When I started this blog, I wanted to center it all around one of my biggest passions: baking. Recently, however, I've learned I have many other passions aside from baking. I love to learn about other people by asking them questions, I like to learn how I can build a better relationship with my husband and people closest to me, I am so intrigued by psychology and I love to learn.
This sort of self discovery started when I created this group on Facebook. It's still small and in the process of becoming what I hope it will be, but it's letting me tap into what else I am interested in, that I may have been ignoring. I do appreciate photography, I do like to read about fashion and beauty. I'm a bit of a health nut and love healthy recipes and new workouts. I love to share that one funny picture I stumbled upon that brightened my day. Most importantly, I am a very curious and enthusiastic person. So, this is where the change comes in. Instead of posting just about baking, I am just going to post whatever I find interesting or whatever is on my mind. Starting today, this blog will be more like a diary, except I want you to read it. Hopefully, if you like my blog, you will subscribe and share your thoughts on whatever I decide to post about. I would really love that.
All of that said, today I have decided to start embracing change more. So here's to change and hopefully it brings exciting opportunities and an unforgettable journey.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Sprinkle Overload

It's the little things in life that make you the happiest.

My husband is a simple man who is pleased by the littlest things in life. Candy, cuddling, cookies, sugar, pizza, naps, love letters back and forth...and I'm going to have to say sugar again. I have never met anyone who pours over 5 cups of sugar into koolaid and calls it perfect. Forget it, I can't even sip it.

Since cookies make him happy, and sugar makes him happy...he obviously loves sugar cookies. *With extra icing and sprinkles, of course.

Hence those pretty little cookies up there. We have made them several times and they are always as good as the last.

In fact, they are quite better than the Lofthouse cookies. Yep, I'm talking about those thickly frosted, perfectly-baked-so-they-are-just-the-right-kind-of-soft sugar cookies we love to buy at the grocery store and not share. And they always will be-- as long as I don't let my husband decorate them.

Husband in charge of sprinkles = sugar high to the extreme.

See? It's madness.

Wanna know what else is madness? Not baking these cookies this instant and depriving yourself from their deliciousness that will make your tummy oh, so happy.

Yeah, I'm thinking that you should probably make these ASAP so you can have a happy tummy and an extra happy Monday. (Is that even possible?! I mean, to have an extra happy Monday? Mondays just aren't the happiest of days in my opinion)

Anyway, here is the super easy recipe so you can whip these up!

Note: As called for in the original recipe, you can substitute 1/2 cup of shortening for the butter in the frosting recipe, and 5 tablespoons milk (whole is best) for the 6 tablespoons heavy cream. The consistency is different, but as far as flavor and taste I hardly noticed a difference.

Happy baking!