Category Archives: Delicious

Pulp of lime, Red Vines and good conversation …

Despite the craziness of life, Audi and I recently made a point to get together to catch up. We threw out tons of ideas … lunch, shopping, crafting, cooking, etc.. All fun ideas – but being our usual, indecisive selves – we couldn’t make up our mind. So, we met up for lunch and then sat on my front porch doing absolutely nothing but talking and sipping on a frozen, nonalcoholic (for our pregnant friend), strawberry/lime beverage. The drink was delicious and the conversation was spectacular. We seriously could have sat there until the wee hours of the morning…

I confirmed three key things that day …

1. Don’t be afraid to be a kid.
Of course, there is always the right time and place for such a thing. All and all, don’t be afraid to act silly or get so caught up or worried about what others may think/say about you. Enjoy the simple things in life – playing in the rain, swinging on the swings or whatever else wakes your inner child.  After picking up a package of our favorite licorice, we couldn’t help but relive our childhood silliness by using a Red Vine as a straw. Note: You can sip a frozen beverage through a Red Vine, but it gets hard, fast.

2. You learn something new every day.
I’ve used lime JUICE in plenty of recipes – even lime zest, but never just the pulp. Call us amateurs, but we didn’t know what the heck we were doing. In our defense, it didn’t help the recipe was pretty vague. Thankfully, after some help from our friend Google, we now know how to remove the pulp from lime the proper way. To save you the hassle, here’s a more detailed link to the strawberry/lime drink recipe as well. Before jumping in, make sure you read the “Notes from Kitchen” on the bottom of the page … our batch was pretty tart as well. We’d recommend tweaking the recipe slightly … especially for kids!

3. Getting together doesn’t just happen…
…especially with family, kids, work, community and other commitments. Everyone is busy… crazy busy in fact. But don’t use that as an excuse to put off visiting with an old friend or family. Trust me, I’m fully aware I’m guilty of this too. Ultimately, we all need to make an effort to keep in touch, take time to laugh, and do a better job of balancing our lives between work, family, friends, etc.

Given the 4th of July is right around the corner, I’ll sum up my thoughts with this wonderful quote …

Laughter is the fireworks of the soul.

Hope everyone has an enjoyable and safe Independence Day!

Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

A healthy & affordable snack: (self) roasted almonds

It seems that every couple weeks my husband and I have a chat about eating healthier … but every week the same crummy snack foods end up on the grocery list – doritos for me (cool ranch are my weakness) and cookies & other sweets for my other half. Now, it’s not as bad as it sounds… I buy the carrots, apples and other healthy stuff, but the crap food is usually the first to go. And when I do spend the dime on healthy options, like berries and nuts (which I’d personally prefer to eat over that crap food), it’s gone in the first 2 days and I’ve spent 2-3 times as much.

A small step in the right direction…
After my hubbies frugal but smart suggestion, I’ve recently started to purchase raw almonds and roast them myself. The bags of raw almonds are still a bit pricey, but they are cheaper and healthier than the other roasted nut options the stores offer as I don’t coat them in sugar or salt.

It’s a simple as this…
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Spread the almonds flat on an ungreased cookie sheet.
Roast for 8-10 mins.
Allow to cool and store.

A HUGE lesson learned to share here is that the oils in the almonds continue to cook the nut for a while after removing from the oven. I’ve made the mistake of tasting upon removal – thinking they were still too chewy and throwing them back in the oven. The result if you aren’t patient … burnt almonds.

The result if you are patient … a crunchy, delicious, affordable and convenient snack for at home, on the road or at work.

Tagged , ,

Showing love on V-day and the remaining 364 days of the year…

Instant Chocolate cake recipe in a Valentine's day mug

Instant Chocolate Cake Recipe in a Valentine's Day Mug

“They” always say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. However, I’m hoping I’ve already paved a clear path to my hubby’s heart as three years ago today he proposed to me in the most perfect way – with a Valentine heart-shaped ring from atop a deliciously sweet cupcake.

Regardless of already winning over each others’ hearts, it’s important – Valentine’s Day or not – to make sure we continue to demonstrate our love. Married folk can all agree … it’s not always easy. But, I’m here to say just because it’s not always easy doesn’t mean you have to overthink it either. An expression of love doesn’t have to come with a hefty price tag or elaborate plan (although I won’t turn away a sparkly surprise if given one!) Ultimately it’s the little things that count … and those little things can add up wonderfully – like leaving a sweet note where and/or when your significant other would least expect it. Or even sharing the thoughts in your head … if he/she looks good, tell them! Compliments, sweet notes and/or gestures can go a long way to remind the special person in your life that they still light your fire after so many years.

However you choose to express your love to your partner is ultimately up to you and your style. The important part is that you do something no matter how busy, how tired or how stressed. Stop making excuses and make the time!

And, if the love of your life has a sweet tooth just like mine, here’s a last minute, quick and easy way to warm their heart … literally.

Instant chocolate cake*

1. Whisk 1/4 cup flour, 5 tbsp sugar, 2 tbsp cocoa powder, 1 egg, 3 tbsp milk, 3 tbsp vegetable oil and a dash of vanilla extract and salt in a large mug until smooth. Optional – I used a Valentine’s day themed mug I purchased from Target. The inside bottom of the mug says “I love you” (now cue the awww’s..)

2. Microwave until puffed about 2 mins. Sprinkle w/ more cocoa powder and serve up the warm chocolatey goodness to your sweetie tomorrow!

Just a few helpful sides notes…

• I’ve found a spoon works better to mix up the ingredients… either the mug wasn’t big enough or my whisk wasn’t small

• The mug is hot… really hot, so be careful!

• This recipe is good, but the addition of a fudge or other sweet topping would make it even better!

* This recipe was found in Food Network Magazine, April 2011

Pin it!

Tagged , , , , , , ,