I'm doing a juice cleanse thingy this week and all I can think about is how HUNGRY I am. Wah. Yes, I'm a 30 year old who is crying about a voluntary juice cleanse. Since I usually exhibit the will power of a three year old it's important for me to remain committed to this and make it. The plan is to do it for seven days but I will give myself MAJOR props for making it to five. This green lil' beauty is made of kale, spinach, brocoli, carrots, celery and apples. I've found that Pinterest is particularly annoying this week. Every time I log on it's nothing but cheesy dips and cupcakes......funny because normally it's those motivational pics of models with perfect abs as I'm busy stuffing my face. Go figure. No recipes this week, no solid food this week. Did I mention, WAH? Until next week, CHEERS!
First of all, how GREAT is Pinterest?? I spend my nights in utter awe of all the goodness that website has to offer and I've been diligently pinning dinner recipes for weeks now. Pinterest will truly make me a better cook, I am CRAZZZZY in love with it.
Speaking of Pinterest being a phenomenal resource for recipes.......
Asian CRACK slaw. I am an automatic fan of any recipe that has crack in the title. You will recall I called the yogurt sauce from my Greek burgers crack-like addictive. Anywho I decided to make this because it looked relatively simple and like something that would pair nicely with a soy/ginger marinated chicken breast.
CRACK slaw indeed. This stuff is delicious.......scrumptious, I want to bath in it and eat the whole bathtub!!
Do yourself a favor and get this stuff ASAP:
Bag of cole slaw mix w/carrots
5 sliced scallions
1 cup slivered almonds
3 tbs sesame seed
1 package of ramen noodles (minus the seasonings)
3 tbs butter
1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 tbs soy sauce
1/4 cup sugar *don't put this all in at once, pour some and taste. I did not use all the sugar
Melt butter and add almonds, broken up ramen noodles and sesame, cook until golden- remove
Add this mixture and scallions to cole slaw mix and toss in dressing. Let refrigerate, taste incredible cold.
Which I must admit is a bit surprising to me. Well anywho, it's 2012, it's a brand new year. I'm back and I'm ready to be a GREAT blogger...........an above average blogger. Could this be why my sister is the only one following this blog? ;) Shout out to my sis!
I've had a lot of my girlfriends asking me for recipes lately. Looks like the cooking bug has bitten a lot of us. I've still been cooking as often as I normally do although, I COULD be a lot healthier. I don't know why but suddenly I love cheese.....cheese on EVERYTHING. It's a sickness and admitting it is the first step to getting better. I have two recipes that I've made this week that are total winners.....easy, healthy and DELISH!
Numero uno: Greek Style Turkey burgers. (YUM) -----seriously I got a major pat on the back this week from Brandon, not that he's picky. ;)
This is a great dinner to satisfy that icky fast food craving you're having. It's also great while you're being active/working out for those days that you're ravenously hungry.
For the burger patties:
crumbled feta cheese (I know, I know....use sparingly)
chopped purple onion
1 clove of minced garlic (or cheat and use the already minced garlic in a jar- 1/2 tsp)
Throw them on the grill or bake at 350 for 30-35 mins (keep an eye on them, every oven is different and they're best when juicy).
I use Natures Own multi-grain sandwich flats (toasted) for the buns. They are SUPER thin and don't make you feel as guilty. They really do give the illusion and trick your belly into thinking your eating a big ol' piece of bread.
Here's my FAVE, yogurt dressing. This replaces that vile substance you all like to call mayo. Eww. I'm not one for sauce on a burger but this stuff is crack-like addictive.
Any lowfat greek yogurt (I used 2 small containers but I like leftovers to dip veggies in during the week)
ginger (this a BIG time cheat but I use the tube stuff, ever seen ginger? freaky!) one inch OR one tablespoon of freshly grated
2 cloves garlic
1 teaspoon cumin (I put a little more but I LOVE me some cumin)
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
couple dashes of salt
2 tablespoons of finely chopped purple onion (I put it through the food processor you do not want big chucks)
Mix, mix mix into a little bowl of heaven. Have I mentioned how fantastic this is for dipping veggies?
I use lettuce, avocado, tomato and sliced cucumbers as the fixin's.
Serve with whatever you like on the side. I've done corn on the cobb OR a quick little cucumber/tomato salad. Maybe both? You so CRAZY.
The other recipe is a easy peezy lemon squeezy crock pot dinner:
Let me start by saying that I have spent the majority of my life under the assumption that I hate porkchops. I was SO wrong. If only I could go back and eat all those porkchops I missed out on. *SIGH*. My world was turned upside down the day I discovered how crazy good porkchops are in the slow cooker. They are so incredible. In fact I'll never make them any other way.
porkchops (I usually make about 4-6....they shrink quite a bit and are so delicious that you'll be fighting over them....seriously we've fought over them.
1 can cream of mushroom soup (they come 99% fat free)
1 packet dry onion soup mix (Some advice, always keep extra of these in your cupboard, they seem to be in EVERY slow cooker recipe I see plus you can put it in sour cream and make delicious onion dip)
1/2 cup water or dry white wine (waste of wine if you ask me ;))
2 medium onions, sliced
pack of mushrooms or canned but eww....canned mushrroms? fresh work just fine and aren't disgusting, thank you VERY much
In slowcooker, place porkchops, pile with onion and mushrooms
In a separate bowl combine soup, dry soup packet, water/wine (I add a dash or two of Worcestershire sauce bc well....it tastes good with everything) mix well and then top over everything. Cook on high 6 hours.
Easy and delicious. Tastes like you did something fancy but really you just dumped a bunch of stuff in a crockpot.
I intend to share my blog with many so I promise to write more. Full disclosure, me giving advice on cooking is like the blind leading the blind but I promise to share my successes because if I can do it......you can too, in fact if I can do it, a 5 year old could.
One of the recipes I've made lately that Brandon and I LOVED was a Macadamia nut crusted halibut with mango salsa and coconut rice. It was UH-MAZE-ing!! Amazing. The best part? It was super simple and yet seemed so fancy/gourmet.
I searched the internet for a while to find the "right" recipe. Most of them combined the macadamia nuts with panko or other types of breadcrumbs/extras (which I had before and didn't like as much). For this dish, the simpler the better! :) Here's the recipe: http://homecooking.about.com/od/seafoodrecipes/r/blsea103.htm
Few tips....you absolutely need a food processer/chopper for this. I tried making it by hand chopping the nuts and it didn't coat the fish as evenly. This time I ran the macadamia nuts through a processer and it made a HUGE difference. Also, every oven is different so check on it periodically to make sure it isn't over cooked, this dish is so amazing because it's crispy on the outside and juicy on the inside!
For the mango salsa I just chopped up mango, red pepper, onion (purple), cilantro and a little chilli pepper, and squeezed lemon and lime juice over it. Try to refrigerate it for a while so it's extra cold. Yum.
My desire to cook usually comes to me in inconsistent waves but lately it hasn't seemed to shut off or even falter slightly. The invigoration I get from looking up new recipes on the Internet is the same feeling once reserved only for mass amounts of online shopping. Could it BE? That cooking brings the same smile to my face as the perfect Betsey Johnson party dress?? I think so friends....I think so.
Let me be clear....I am NOT a chef. In fact, I don't even regard myself as someone who has natural tendencies in the kitchen. I'm just someone who loves the idea of cooking and hosting dinner parties. I'd like to push the envelope a bit and take myself out of my "10 dish rotation" comfort zone. I may win some (macadamia nut crusted halibut) and I will certainly lose some but gosh darn it I'm going to have a blast while I do.
So I'll continue being a guinea pig for those of us who aren't pros and prove that some recipes while they look complicated and impossible are right within our reach! I'll be sharing recipes as I make them and sharing my struggles and changes....which one's are MUST make and which ones to skip. Enjoy!