Tuesday, May 31, 2011

I am versatile and stuff ;)

versatile_blogger_awardI was just awarded the Versatile Blogger Award for this blog!! I am excited because this is my neglected blog ;)

Kortney's Krazy Life

It came from the lovely Kortney at Kortney's Crazy Life! Find her here at:  http://www.kortneyskrazylife.com

So the "Rules" are to thank the awarder (and link back to them in your post) , tell a little about yourself (7 things) and nominate some fellow versatile bloggers (15 of them!)... I am still kind of a newbie so we will see how it goes-- I haven't really been around long enough to garner a huge following so I will just nominate the few that I have grown to love in a very short period of time--- sorry for being such a rebel rule breaker!!

1. Most days I would rather not have anything scheduled but I am bored and crabby when I have nothing to do......
2. I am SUPER allergic to cats but dogs don't usually bother me
3. If I could have any job, it would be Samantha Brown's on the travel channel
4. I could eat Mexican food everyday and be perfectly happy
5. I only like my coffee cold
6. I think my other blog is way better- shameless plug for http://dr-momma.blogspot.com :)
7. My great (x14 or something) grandmother was Pocahontas... I know, right?

Go out and find these super bloggers- they have some great material!

rasjacobsen @ http://rasjacobson.wordpress.com/ lessons from teachers and twits

So there- it's only 1/2 but then these ladies won't feel pressured to comply because of my underachieving!! Have a great week everyone :)
And thank you again to Kortney!!

Monday, May 30, 2011

Sunny Summer Kickoff

Every good day starts with breakfast :)
And since you have to eat at some point before you stuff your face with bar-bq today, here is the perfect kick-off for the official start to summer!! Thanks to my mom for a similar idea.

Breakfast Melt
1 slice whole grain bread- the grainier the better
1 jumbo egg
1 slice swiss (or provolone)
2 slices crispy thick cut bacon
1/2 avocado

Prepare toast and bacon (I make mine in the oven on a wire rack so it stays flat). Put egg in a buttered skillet and prepare as if you are going to for over easy/medium, etc. but before you flip it, break the yolk and spread it around the white a little bit. When firm, place on toast with bacon and cover with the cheese. Bake in oven for a few minutes until cheese melts. Spread mashed avocado on top with some salt and pepper. This serves one- you might want to make more cause your husband will be jealous (unless he loathes avocado like mine)!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

How bout a side of fat with those turkey burgers??

The other day I was making some blue cheese turkey burgers for dinner- yes I was still trying to use up that blue cheese :) Sidenote while I am here.... does anyone else think it's interesting that some of these cheeses go bad so fast? "Once opened, use within 5 days"- we wouldn't want the stinky moldy cheese to get... moldy? Anyway, I digress :)

So I was making some blue cheese turkey burgers on whole grain rolls with tomato, lettuce and mayo but I had no ideas for a side other than a chop salad (which I did end up making). I stood in my kitchen and stared, and stared and stared and finally the vidalia onions in the basket told me I should make some fatty onion rings---- those are some smart onions!

Easy easy easy! While heating some oil in my deep skillet/fryer, I sliced one large onion into some rings.
Then I combined about a cup of milk with 2-3 handfuls of flour- this is not an exact science- if you want thicker batter, make it thicker, if you want tempura-like coating, make it thinner.... and yes that is goat milk (we are weird).

That's pretty much it- not so much cooking :) Dump the onions into the mix and make sure they are all coated. Drop them into the hot oil (it will be ready when a TINY droplet of water sizzles if added- tiny folks- very very tiny) and fry for 4-6 minutes per side or until they look golden and tasty to you. Remove with slotted spatula, sprinkle immediately with salt and pepper and drain on wire racks.
Admittedly, not a great shot but I was so excited to eat that it took very low  precedence ;)
PS- The chop salad and turkey burger were each tasty too!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Operation: Do Not Waste.... aaaaand yet another salad idea ;)

I am in a constant quest to use up everything in the fridge- there is just something about throwing away leftovers that I can't stand. If produce goes bad before we eat it, I think about it all day... maybe I have problems! Well I know I do, but that's another post ;)
I found myself at the end of a weekend with lots of "stuff" that needed using. We were out much of the day yesterday and my husband had something this evening so I didn't do as much cooking as I would have liked. This actually worked out because my kids and I can eat about anything for dinner, even if it doesn't make much sense as dinner. I have consumed some random combinations to avoid throwing stuff out and tonight was no different but it was delicious! Not sure what he will be eating when he gets home......
I have an excess of lettuce right now- I thinned out our patch for better growth and had all the baby leaves to deal with, I also had a package of romaine hearts and a head of iceberg before I bought a package of goodness at Whole Foods the other day- I couldn't pass it up because it was such a good deal (btw you did read that right, you can get some really great deals there and THAT is yet another post).

Soooooo my son had some leftover corn on the cob with his pizza, my daughter had leftover amazingly yummy breakfast frittata from yesterday and I had a salad- BIG SURPRISE, right?? Salads, soups, frittatas,burritos and pasta bakes are my go-to uses for leftovers and this one did not disappoint.
I went for the spring mix as well as leftover home-made blue cheese dressing from earlier in the week (it was a little watery by now but it really worked well with the mixed greens). With it I sliced radishes, which we also have a plethora of from the garden harvest and........ corn off the cob- I just sliced it in there on a whim because it needed used and I figured the sweetness would be a good compliment to the tartness of the blue cheese. It was stinking delicious if I do say so myself and pretty gorgeous to look at.

A bowl of springtime for sure.
Give it a chance-super quick and easy.

Blue Cheese Dressing-totally approximate because I am not a measurer ;)
1/2 cup mayo
1/2cup sour cream
1/2 container blue cheese-  used Treasure Cave
splash of whole milk
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp italian seasoning- could substitute fresh basil and parsley- 1 tsp each
salt and pepper to taste

*This took some tweaking for taste- remember to make it in advance so the blue cheese flavor permeates the dressing. It is not very good if you try it immediately!! Gets watery after it's been in the fridge awhile but the flavor gets even better- you might even want to drink it (is that a gross visual??)

Saturday, May 21, 2011

perfect patio pair!

i am behind on this post but am gonna post it anyway :) two weeks ago, a friend and i headed to westport plaza for happy hour. it is a GREAT area, especially when the weather gets niceand you can use one of the patios-- there are several restaurants with outdoor seating here and they all open up into a commone square (very cool). we choose a place called Ice Kitchen. i think that technically it is a vodka bar but they offered some tasty food options and a good drink selection including sangria-- be still my heart! for like 10 bucks (wow) they offered a trio of small "tasters" each in a small sized wine glass- a pomegranate, white and red sangria. all were great and the white was phenomenal. we also ordered some bites- me: pita with hummus and tzaziki and she: a wedge salad. again, very tasty- my pita was warm and slighty cripsy and the dips very good and flavorful. we will totally be going back- good food, good atmosphere, good prices and great drinks. i would have enjoyed another trio but i had to catch a flight ;)

Pita and Dips-- yuuuum

:( sad that first one is gone :(
Sangria Trio and my drinking dining partner!

Note: Not a paid reviewer- this is just my take

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Gourmet Brownie Shortcut

Yesterday my mom and I threw a baby shower for my cousin (who is like my sister) and it was great! One of the recipes had people RAVING and it was soooo easy. I had planned on making these from scratch Paula Dean brownies and then time got away from me so I took a more Sandra Lee approach :)
I purchased a family size Duncan Hines brownie mix and just spiced it up a bit.
Orange Pecan Brownies
Brownie Mix- prepare as directions indicate but add 1 tsp orange extract and 3/4 cup chopped pecans to the batter. Bake and cool. Frost with a can of Buttercream Icing mixed with 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp orange extract and top with 1/4 cup chopped pecans for garnish. From-scratch buttercream is better but there are decent prepared choices out there too. I used a half and half mix.
These were so so so good.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Leftover Makeover Steak

Yesterday was my birthday and birthdays (even those spent alone with two children) deserve steak or something ;) So I made steak and had quite a bit leftover. The perfect place for a leftover steak is on a salad.

Note: I realize that last week's makeover was also a salad- I have just been craving them because of the warm weather AND i just thinned out our lettuce patch so i have a gazillion baby lettuce leaves! I still like pasta and stuff...

Balsamic Steak Salad
Leftover Steak- sliced against the grain
Blue Cheese Crumbles
Sliced Strawberries
Candied Pecans (or something comparable)
Green Onions
Balsamic Vinaigrette- I make this sometimes, but to be honest, it is NEVER as good as the bottled version ;)

Maybe next week I will make something warm :)

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Wednesday Leftover Makeover

What's this?! Another post this week? :)
I was determined to post a leftover makeover this week. I had several ideas, as this week has been one giant experiment in combining leftovers- we are kinda in and out this week and goin out of town this weekend so I kinda wanted to use what we have. But then I got hungry- 30 minutes ago. And I threw together a quick salad while my daughter was napping. It was so good so I will have to use it.
I used some smoked turkey in the fridge but what a GREAT use for leftover roasted turkey (or chicken)!

Twisted Turkey Cobb Salad
*I use the term cobb loosely as this is sorta like a cobb salad but with a "twist" on ingredients

Baby spinach
Shredded cheese- I used cheddar
Turkey (chopped up)
Avocado (cubed)
Rye croutons- I make croutons out of whatever bread is going stale and then keep them in the fridge for later use. This time I had rye but any other type would work
Ranch or Blue Cheese dressing- Fresh or bottled

So simple and delicious with a great combination of textures!!
I would have taken a picture had I planned on posting it :)

Sunday, May 1, 2011

bad blogger awards

wow- i am now a nominee for faulty food blog award! i HAVE been blogging but it has all been about mommyhood. aaron has been gone aLOT and so i haven't been cooking quite as often. i have also been rather inspirationless.... come on baseball season, let's move on!
so anyway- also win an award for kitchen oops this weekend. it turns out that when your cobbler just doesn't look right, that maybe you forgot a major component.... like liquid. i left out the milk so then i had to mix it all together so it won't be quite as cobblerish when it comes out but hopefully it will still taste good. next time maybe i should just use a recipe.
i'll post my version if it turns out ;)