Tuesday, November 19, 2013

E-man's Super Mario Party

  A few weeks ago my little E-man turned 6. There is just something about him being 6, like the first 5 years of watching him grow are complete and we have started a new chapter in his life.

  I really wanted to throw him a cookie-decorating party. This is a party theme I saw in a magazine while pregnant and held onto all these years. I really tried to sell him on the idea. He was pretty firm on his decision: It would have to be a Super Mario Party.
   
   I'll admit I was a little sad at first, but then I started brainstorming on this Mario themed party and got over it real quick. And in the end it all came together pretty nicely.



Thursday, November 7, 2013

Grilled PB, Nutella and Banana

   I truly believe that there are few things in life more wonderful than melted peanut butter. This little treat is something I tend to make for my husband and friends after a late night out instead of the always regretted Taco Bell. It is as simple as making a grilled cheese sandwich and the peanut butter, banana, and nutella make a pretty sexy menage a trois.....It also makes a great snack for kids....just ignore the sexy part.....


Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Almond Milk Chai Latte (Low Carb and Dairy Free)

  You may not know it from my posts, but I am a pretty healthy eater. Most of the goodies I share on here on to my sweet tooth hubby and the select friends I deem as guinea pigs. Meanwhile I'm drinking water and eating seaweed snacks. Don't get me wrong I love the shit out of some seaweed, but there comes a certain time of year when I crave what everyone else has. Guess when that is- yup that's right Fall.

  Damn you pumpkin spice and vanilla chai! I'm sure I can't be the only person who associates these flavors with all the sentiments of the Fall season. I want to sit in the cool Autumn breeze wrapped in a flannel throw sipping something warm and spiced while orange leaves blow past......... Except, I have to be picky about where and what I splurge on( don't be worried about me- I do get to splurge!). And if I'm drinking 42 grams of sugar- Ya I'm calling you out Starbucks Vanilla Chai Latte- I don't have a lot of wiggle room for the other things in life. Like booze. :)

  Today, I can proudly say that I have found a way to have my chai...and drink it too!

Not only is this sugar free, but the calories come in at less than 30 per cup. And the taste is great, sometimes with sugar free versions of favorites comes a funky sweetener taste...but you don't get that with this- just spicy chai goodness!



Cheater Chai Latte
  • 3/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 3/4 cup sugar free chai concentrate (I used oregon chai, and found it at Target)
  • A sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg

Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan. Cooking over medium heat, stir to dissolve cinnamon and nutmeg. When warm carefully pour into a mug and enjoy.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Butter Pecan Cream Pies

I'm officially going to say it out loud...I have lost my camera. I feel a little overly paranoid in saying that I have convinced myself my 3 year old has hidden it from me. My husband and I have looked pretty much every where. I'm beginning to become hopeless....and haven't been able to take pictures of my recipes.

 That being said, I have to share this recipe anyways with only a little picture I uploaded onto Instagram. I was going to wait, and make them again once the camera had been found but....these may possibly be some of the tastiest cookie creations I have ever concocted and felt they should be shared with the world.

 I tend to be a bit of a box mix snob, not that the quality isn't there, just that for some reason I can never get something pre-made to turn out just right for me. But, when my local grocery store had Betty Crocker cake mixes on sale for 25 cents and I had a buy two take off 75 cents coupon I kind of had to buy  some(is it still buying, if they are free?). I didn't even know they had a butter pecan cake mix. So I grabbed a couple, and later decided they would make a really good cake mix cookie. Then I started thinking about how good they would be with a cream cheese frosting.....and one thing led to another- and these sweet sweet babies were born!

Not a bad pic for a crap phone and a little Instagram magic!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Doughnut Fake Out Bento Box

Mmmm.... Doughnut....
  We channeled our inner Homer Simpsons with this fake-out-doughnut bento box I did a couple weeks ago(yes, he has been in school that long).
 The doughnut is made from whole grain honey wheat bread with a little peanut butter and Crofter's Strawberry Fruit Spread. I cut it into a circle and then used a shot glass(super secret and handy bento tool) to cut our the doughnut hole middle. Then I drizzled with honey and stuck on some sprinkles. I don't care what I make if there are sprinkles involved my kids think it's a party! The "doughnut" hole I dusted with powdered sugar just to mix it up a little. He has pita crackers with cheddar cheese triangles on the side, as well as blueberries and blackberries. Had to stick the cute frog in, just for fun. He also has a GoGo Squeez Apple Sauce and water in his lunch bag. I'm happy to say he ate every single bite of this lunch.
All in all this lunch took me about 3 minutes to throw together and it was a big hit with my little guy.


Hope you are inspired to rock your own kids' lunches too!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Beach Bento

I'm a pretty proud mom, because E-man came up with this beach bento on his own. Actually after getting the little umbrella pick at our favorite sushi restaurant he demanded I make him a beach bento, with a sandwich as the sand, blueberries for the water and a sun made of cheese. I added in the clementines and one cookie on the side. He also has an organic Tubers yogurt and a water in his lunch bag. Maybe in a few years he will be packing up his own bento boxes! 



Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Grilled Jalapeno Poppers

When my husband and I first met he would stare at me in disbelief at the fact I could sit an eat a bowl of pickled jalapenos. I have always loved spicy foods, while he has always been evasive towards them. Over the last 8 years that we've been together I have learned to cook a little on the tame side- so I don't completely blow him away.

 But I just can't stop grilling bacon wrapped- cheese stuffed- jalapenos. I've made them so many times this summer, and each time they taste better and better. And, much to my surprise- my husband loves them too! The first time I made them, I felt pretty bad because I had left a little too much of the membranes (the spicy part of the pepper) inside and he cried as he ate them. 
   But he kept eating them. And yes, he was really crying. He's a man who isn't afraid to cry- okay (and also doesn't read my blog so I can post that for the world to see! HA!) especially when his sensitive taste buds are on fire. 

 Don't worry.....with proper cleaning and seed removal (wear gloves- Trust me!) and a whole lot of ranch to dip even the spice sissies in your family can find themselves enjoying these peppers. 

Start with good sized fresh jalapenos. You can either cut them in half lengthwise or cut a little slit in the pepper, making a tiny pepper door. Strip away the seeds and membranes inside. Stuff with your cheese mixture.  

















Next wrap those stuffed peppers with a strip of bacon. Use a couple of toothpicks to secure each end of the bacon. 

















Pop those bad boys on the grill, cooking with indirect heat until nice and crispy. About 15-20 minutes.













Gently, remove the toothpicks- so no one eats them (ya...it happened to us...)













Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Cucumber and Mint Citrus Water

We went to a wedding a few months back and prior to the ceremony they had light appetizers and wine. And an incredibly refreshing cucumber water. I drank almost as much of that water as I did wine! Ever since then I've wanted to make some for myself at the house. I drink A TON of water and thought this would be a good way to mix it up a little. So, a couple weeks ago I finally made a jug of cucumber water. Not only did I love it, but so did everyone else in the house. I've made it several times since. And it not only tastes like a day at the spa it also works to detoxify your system- so it makes you feel good when you drink it too.


Cucumber and Mint Citrus Water

Ingredients:
  • 1 cucumber sliced
  • 1 lime or lemon sliced
  • 3-4 sprigs of fresh mint

Directions:
 Add all ingredients into a 2-qt jug or pitcher. Fill with water (I used water for my Pur tank but if you drink your tap water as is I'm sure it would be fine). Let sit in the fridge for several hours before drinking. Once you've drank all the water you can refill the jug reusing the cucumber and citrus a few times over, but toss it out after 2 or 3 days.  

Monday, July 29, 2013

Blueberry and Cream Cheese Muffins

If you're anything like me, when your son comes to you on a rainy day and tells you that he NEEDS you to make blueberry muffins, you may find yourself whipping up a batch before you've even had your own breakfast. Yes, I know I am a sucker. But, the kid has a point- muffins are perfect for rainy days. And since he's only 3 it sounds like he is saying "boobies" when he says blueberries and it made me laugh so much I just had to make him some.

We ate them warm and I loved the way the blueberries and cream cheese tasted together. It has rained so much this July, we were overdue for some comfort foods. Good idea Little Mr.- very good idea!


Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Fig and Brie Bites

I have a bad habit of biting off a little more than I can chew. I don't know why I do it to myself, I just can't help it. Especially when it comes to food. I am the girl who thinks she can bake a 3-layer cake from scratch in the hour before work while simultaneously cleaning the kitchen and getting ready to go in for a shift.

 It's just who I am. But, that is why I am so grateful when I find recipes that taste and look fancy-pants, but require minimal effort to assemble.

 Thus, I present to you a new favorite party-food-go-to: Fig and Brie Bites.


Now, the secret to this breeze of a bite is that I buy the baked phyllo shells pre-made at the store. Stop your gasping, we all have to cut corners somewhere!
   And these little guys are pretty awesome, I'm stuck on this combo right now but I feel that the versatility here is endless.

 For now-I take a little bit of a Fig spread( I love the richness of the fig) and a wedge of brie cut into small pieces. Pop it into the the mini shells and pop those into an oven for about 8 minutes.

The taste is fantastic. And the work level is somewhere around a 2. Only because you have to open the box that the shells come in.

Now go grab some wine, make these babies, and get your classy on!

Fig and Brie Bites

Ingredients

  • 2 boxes of pre-baked mini phyllo shells (usually 15cnt.)
  • A few tablespoons of good Fig spread (I love Dalmatia)
  • 1 wedge of brie


Directions
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.
Place phyllo cups onto a large baking sheet lined with parchment.
Cut the rind away from the brie, and cut the cheese into small pieces. Spread a small amount of the fig spread into each cup, and then top with a chunk of brie.
Bake for 8 minutes, or until golden and melted.

These are awesome warm, but also great served at room temperature.



Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Easy Baked Apples

    I seriously have a soft spot for warm baked apples. I may have passed that on because the boys have been putting in requests for me to make apple pie the last few days. E-man even goes as far as to list off all the ingredients he thinks we would need to fix up a good pie.
  
   Unfortunately, I went on a vacation and I've still got some residual laziness left over from beach bumming it. 

 No way I'm making apple pie from scratch in the next few days. It's alright though.... I've got a few tricks up my sleeve. 

   To appease my son's sweet tooth I whipped up an easy Baked Apple Dessert that was pretty much effortless and satisfied everyone's craving for apple pie. Also, my house smelled pretty darn awesome.



Easy Baked Apples

Ingredients:

  • 1 apple per person 
  • A pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg,salt and brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter


Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Peel, core and slice apple. This is a breeze if you're a kitchen nerd like me and have an apple-peeling-coring-slicing-gizmo.
 Rub the apple, getting in between the slices, with the spices and put in a ramekin, small baking dish, or muffin tin depending on what you have and how many you need.
 Stuff 1 tablespoon of butter down the hole where the core had been. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the apple is nice and soft.
 We ate ours right out of the ramekins, but I'm sure you could plate it with a little vanilla ice cream if you wanted for extra goodness!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Pan-Roasted Radishes

 Do you guys remember Fraggle Rock? Man, I loved that show as a kid! Little radish-munching-communist-puppets embarking on adventures. What's not to love?

  I've been thinking about that show- which happens to be having its 30 year anniversary- lately because like my little fraggle friends I've been on a crazy radish kick. I have discovered the joy of a cooked radish. Yum.

   See, I never realized you could cook these little root vegetables up and completely transform their flavor. Cooking them takes a little of the bite away and you end up with a something almost like a potato with a kick. I'm hooked.


 This couldn't be easier. Just wash up and trim your radishes. Quarter them and season them up with a little S&P and nutmeg(I don't know why- I just like it in there) Cook those babies until they are just fork tender.

 I had mine on the side with a little broccoli and a grilled chicken breast. I am loving using the grill again- thank you summer!

While eating be sure to check for any Fraggles! :D

















Pan-Roasted Radishes

Ingredients

  • 1-2 bunches of radishes
  • 1 clove of garlic minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • Pinch of fresh nutmeg

Directions
Wash and trim away the greens of the radishes. Cut into quarters or halves depending on size. Melt the butter in a skillet over medium heat. Add the radishes and garlic. Season to taste with salt, black pepper, and a bit of nutmeg. Cook, stirring occasionally until just fork tender- about 10 minutes.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Road Trip!


 It sure feels good to be back! Any regular followers may have noticed I've been MIA for a few weeks now, but that is only because I took a nice 2 week long vacation! That's right I packed up the kids and the husband and we drove over 1300 miles to Sarasota, Florida. 

   We had an awesome time on our trip! Within those two weeks we were in 7 different states. We saw amazing mountains (being an OKIE I will always be easily impressed by any type of terrain other than flat) and swam in the ocean. I just uploaded 383 pictures from the trip and I still don't think I fully captured the adventure.

   Now, in all my planning and crazy lady ideas I had every intention to do a post all about the great places we ate along the way......but then my sweet heart of a son deleted all the pictures I took on the first 4 days and that idea went out the window! 

  I will say- we ate at a great place in Franklin, Tennessee called Pucketts. I took some great pics(which were erased) of the Fried Green Tomato BLT I ate. Even though I didn't end up with the pictures I still have to mention it. Because it was delicious! The perfect thing you want to eat in a place like Tennessee. Even the beer came served up in a mason jar. Loved it.

Once we got to Florida I knew for sure I wanted to check out a place I had seen on the travel channel. Munchies 420 Cafe. The concept is awesome- open from 4:20 pm until 4:20 am, they serve up the best munchies and what I think of as "drunk food". The prices are great, the food is fantastic and they even deliver. I wish we had a place like this in OKC- maybe I'll just have to open one!



    We knew that if we were going to eat there this one time we were going to do it right. We went right for the "Fat" Sandwiches. Holy crap. 
Here's what I ordered:

    The fat momma- A pizza philly(philly steak with mushrooms, onions, and peppers) topped with marinara and mozzarella then topped with chicken tenders, spuds(potato wedges), and fried mozzarella sticks. You might be thinking- WTF- Fried mozz on a sandwich?  You bet your ass fried mozz on a sandwich. And it was delicious. Others in our group had things similar- such as a burger topped with mac n' cheese and a ton of other fried goodies, and a chicken tender sandwich covered in melted cheese sauce. I ate half of mine....later when I thought I was ready for the other half I devoured it and then cried around for an hour at the pain in my belly....... but it was worth it.




 
















Our friend Colton seemed happy about his Fat Sandy, and check out the dude in the back- he seems pretty happy about it too! While we were eating people in line kept coming over looking at all our food and going crazy, it was so funny.

I kept staring at C.W's Fat Mike, and he let me have a bite! Remember this is only half of the sandwich, which my husband ate all of in one sitting! 


We had so much fun in Florida, eating, beaching, and relaxing together as a family!


This is at Siesta Beach, the most beautiful beach I have ever been on!




























                                                               The Boys loved the beach!



We also payed a visit to the Nokomis Orange Grove, which serves up ice cream all summer long. It was so good! E-man here has the pineapple and orange twist. There were several citrusy flavors including orange and vanilla (which I had) and chocolate and lime (which I'll try on our next visit).


























On our last day we made frozen mango margaritas with mangoes picked fresh from a mango tree. They were delish!

And here is the reason I only have one restaurant to blog about! We stayed with family friends who cooked great food during our stay! Thanks again to the Parrett family for having us!


Now that I'm home and mostly unpacked- which I'm really bad about..... I am back in the kitchen and whipping up some good stuff. So check back in the next few weeks! 

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Rotini Pasta with Pesto Cream Sauce

It has been a long week.

Living in Oklahoma you learn to cross your fingers and your toes every May and June when the storms roll in, because you never know how it is going to turn out. You call the siren's bluff. You stand out on your lawn and point to rotations in the sky just knowing deep down that you'll be safe. My family was incredibly lucky to come out of an insane tragedy and natural disaster untouched. 
    My heart hurts for the hundreds upon hundreds of people affected by the devastating tornadoes that struck through Oklahoma on Monday. Today it is storming again. I could really use some sunshine.

In the meantime I'll cope with all sad the news(which I can't bring myself to watch anymore) by drinking wine and eating comfort foods in my pajamas. 


 Sticking with that theme, here's the pasta I made last night. I haven't eaten pasta in a while- due to a beach vacation coming up soon- So at first I thought maybe I thought it was amazing because anything that involved pasta and cream sauce would rock my socks off- but CW loved it too.....

 I was thinking how can I blog right now? I don't want a sad blog. No one wants to look at recipes at a time like this- but you know what, we still gotta eat. So here it is: Rotini Pasta with  pesto cream sauce.

I started the recipe with crimini mushrooms. I thought these baby portobellos where the way to go since we weren't having meat in this dish. Also, I am a sucker for sauteed mushrooms. Yum.

Once the sauce came together it looked so good! Creamy and cheesy and full of flavor thanks to the pesto- I used jarred btw, because it is easy and tastes great....

I used the Ronzoni Garden Delights Pasta, which I love because each serving has a half serving of vegetables packed into it. My kids love it, and it makes it a little easier to overlook them picking out the spinach.

The finish product was amazing. Like I said I haven't had pasta in a long time, so I devoured it. I served up some warm foccacia bread that I bought at the grocery store and our meal was complete!

Rotini Pasta with Pesto Cream Sauce
An L.A. Walter Original Recipe
Serves 4
Ingredients

  • 1 12oz box rotini pasta
  • 11/2 cups sliced crimini mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons prepared pesto (jarred or homemade)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 cup grated parmasean cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded asiago cheese
  • 1 cup fresh spinach
  • A few grape tomatoes halved to garnish


Directions 
Cook the rotini al dente according to package (about 9 minutes). Meanwhile, sautee the mushrooms in a large skillet with 2 tablespoons of butter until brown. Salt and pepper them to taste.
In a large sauce pan melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Whisk in the flour and cook for 1 minute over medium heat. Add in the pesto. Stir in the heavy cream and and cook until the sauce begins to bubble and thicken. Add the salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir in the cheese, continuing to stir until it is all melted.

At this point add in a 1/4 cup of the water from the pasta- this starchy water will help the sauce stick to the pasta. Stir in the sauteed mushrooms. Continue to cook the sauce for about 2-3 minutes as it thickens.

  Once the pasta is done, drain well and add to the sauce. Add the fresh spinach and toss the pasta well to mix everything together and wilt the spinach.

Top individual bowls with halved tomatoes.

  Serve with crusty bread and enjoy!


  

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Ritz Bottom Peanut Butter Brownie Cups

Dear Thighs:
   I am so sorry that I created this recipe.



Seriously.
  I am very fortunate to have a love for creating sweet things that isn't accompanied by a love of eating them. But this......

I was daydreaming over a cup of coffee about baking (I call it foodtasizing) because it is a little bit rainy- which means I have an overwhelming urge to stick something in an oven. And somehow I started thinking about how much I love peanut butter and crackers. I started thinking, man if I could figure out a dessert that combined Ritz crackers and peanut butter- well that would be one hell of a treat.  
   Foodtasizing can be dangerous- when you have a beach vacation right around the corner.
 
 Feel free to join me tomorrow in doing a massive amount of squats to balance out today's peanut-butter- carb fest.


Ritz Bottom Peanut Butter Brownie Cups
An L.A. Walter Original Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter- softened 
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 6 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Approx. 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 12 Ritz crackers


 Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 12- count muffin tin with bakers spray(nonstick cooking spray with flour)- Or lightly grease and dust with flour.

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the vanilla, eggs, and cocoa until just combined. Gradually stir in the flour, baking soda, and salt. Do not overmix.

Put one cracker in the bottom of each muffin cup. Divide the brownie batter evenly among the muffin cups. Bake for 15-17 minutes, until brownies are set. Don't overbake, these will be a chewy brownie and a toothpick inserted in the center should come out slightly wet.

While the brownies are still warm top with about a teaspoon each of the peanut butter. The tops of mine caved in, but if yours don't you can tap them gently with a spoon to make a little well.

Remove carefully from muffin tin and allow to cool. Or eat them warm like me because you couldn't resist gooey peanut butter!




Friday, May 10, 2013

Dino Bento

I had to post E-man's bento today because I thought it turned out super cute! He has been learning all about dinosaurs in his Pre-k class, so I thought I would try to go along with that theme.

  The sandwich is on whole grain white bread and consists of turkey and cheese with a little mustard. The kid likes a simple sandwich what can I say.
  It got a little whompy( my spell check say this isn't a word, but I say IT IS!) but I could still tell it was a dinosaur so it worked. I made the palm tree out of crust and some leftover zucchini slices. The cheddar sun(cut out by the hubby with a shaker lid) brought it all together.
 On the side he has fresh blueberries and carrot sticks with a bit of ranch. He also has a GoGo Squeeze Strawberry Apple Sauce and a bottle of water.
5 minutes and he gets a super cool lunch!
I can't believe he only has a few weeks left of Pre-K! I am going to miss doing bento boxes this summer( or I will just do them at home!)  

Fresh Salsa

I love making fresh salsa. I usually only do it in the spring and summer when the produce is in season and on sale. So now it is kind of a ritual, that when it starts to warm up I have to make fresh salsa. 

  The awesome thing about this restaurant style salsa is that you can play with the ingredients to suit your tastes. With 1 and 1/2 peppers it is a medium level of spicy. If you wanna feel those lips burn kick up the amount of peppers- or be a daredevil and leave in the seeds! Also I am NOT an onion fan. Although, I hate onions, I know they have there rightful place in the culinary world. I just don't put in very much onion- if you love onions add in some more. Play with it until you get the perfect taste for you! 

  This salsa tastes fresh and bold - and since we are just chopping and blending this is really easy to whip up. You can use this salsa in any place you would a basic jarred salsa(but this will be so much better and healthier without all the processed junk)- my favorites are on a little taco, with blue corn tortilla chips, on top of  an omelette, and atop taco salad of course!




Fresh Salsa

An L.A. Walter Original Recipe

Ingredients
  • 1 1/4 cup chopped red onion
  • 10 Roma tomoatoes roughly chopped
  • 1 clove peeled garlic
  • 1 fresh jalapeno (seeds removed)
  • 1/2- 1 serrano pepper(seeds removed)
  • the juice of 3 limes
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro
  • Salt, black pepper, and cumin (to taste) 


Directions
Mix first 7 ingredients into a large bowl. Blend with an immersion blender, or blend in bathes using a food processor or blender until you reach your desired consistency. Season with salt, pepper, and cumin to taste. Don't skimp on the seasonings- fresh tomatoes beg for salt! 
  Let chill for at least 1 hour to allow the flavors to meld. 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Strawberry & Basil Cornmeal Cupcakes

There is something I love about the combination of strawberries and basil. The freshness of the basil just makes the sweetness of the berries pop.



 I've been making strawberry-basil lemonade (recipe coming soon?) for a while now, so it only made sense for me to try and incorporate that flavor into something baked.

    When I found a recipe for Cornmeal Cupcakes in Everyday with Rachael Ray Magazine I knew it would be the perfect base to try these with.

 They turned out to be really good. A little sweet, nice and light- perfect to me. I hope you guys like them too!



I have to give photo credit to my Little Mr. who snapped this pic when I left the room. When I uploaded everything I noticed it and thought it was great! As you can tell we both loved these cupcakes! 





Strawberry & Basil Cornmeal Cupcakes
Adapted from a recipe originally appearing in Everyday with Rachael Ray May 2013
Yields: 12 cupcakes

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (room temp)
  • 2 eggs
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons milk
  • 2/3 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chopped fresh strawberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
  • powder sugar, for dusting


Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 12 cup muffin tin with paper or silicone liners.
In an electric mixer cream together the butter, sugar and eggs. Mix until well blended and fluffy. Meanwhile, mix together the flour, salt, and baking powder in a small bowl.

 Add in the milk. Reduce mixer speed to low and stir in the dry ingredients  Beat until just combined. Batter may be lumpy. Stir in the strawberries and basil by hand.

 Fill the prepared muffin cups slightly over halfway. Bake until golden and a toothpick comes out clean in the center of the cupcake- 20- 25 minutes.

   Dust with confectioners' sugar and allow to cool on a wire rack. Enjoy these warm for the best flavor- but they are pretty great at room temp too!

Friday, April 26, 2013

The Oklahoma City Festival of the Arts 2013

Every spring the Arts Council of Oklahoma City hosts the Festival of the Arts in downtown OKC. The festival is a free event that showcases over 100 local artists. We make it a point to go every year- the kids love it, the art is beautiful, there is always some sort of performance going on and of course the cherry on top for me-
    Street food like crazy.

I ate so much I was in pain for the rest of the night. But it was worth it!



It was so hard to pick what we would eat for lunch, but it quickly became clear that it would be Waffle Awesome.

















My sister and I went for the Chicken N' Waffle and I ordered Little Mr. a Nutella and Fruit Waffle.

Tender fried chicken strips, a maple sauce, all wrapped up in a soft a flavorful waffle.

  I was so carb drunk after this and a beer that I could have fallen asleep!



















What a shame Little Mr. couldn't finish all of his huge lunch, so we had to help him out!

Nutella, strawberries, banana, whip cream and a little sprinkle of brown sugar.


YES I am aware that I picked the dessert for my son's lunch. But Really, it wasn't all that bad, and he ate it up!










After a curbside lunch we went for another walk around the festival. I love this spot downtown, which is beautiful with or without and event. OKC you are on fine lookin' lady!

Our favorite artwork was this crazy wire work done by Josh Brooke Cote. Freaky mermaid lady was pretty cool and the Little Mr. had a strange attraction to all the bunnies.


How cool is this Faux grow couch? And yes it was very soft!

The star of our little group was the kiddo's balloon. So many people pulled us aside to inquire about this balloon and one girl even asked for a picture of it! It also whacked about 20 people in the head because it was huge and it was windy. If you were whacked by my son's balloon I deeply apologize. :)


After all that walking we decided it was time for dessert!
Strawberries Newport are just an OKC Arts Festival staple. Lightly sweetened puff pastry, a creamy rich custard, a mound of whipped cream, and fresh strawberries all pile into a pretty rockin' dessert.

On my way out I HAD to get the hubby some of our favorite German Roasted Nuts. We get the cashews, but they also have pecans and almonds. The are warm, sweet and cinnamony. Yum yum yum. I only ate about 10 before I made myself stash the rest away for C.W.

When we got home this guy had passed out. Notice the balloon still attached to the wrist.











It was a great day, we had a lot of fun, got some sun ate our fill and took some time out to appreciate talented artists. For more info visit the Arts Council of Oklahoma City's website Here.

As for today, I have to make up for all that eating yesterday so this will be my thing for the day-

Veggies and Hummus YUM!



Monday, April 22, 2013

Earth Day Bento

Happy Earth Day! 

Ok... I didn't even realize it was Earth Day until after I had taken E-man to school today. Sorry Earth, I've been really busy.

 So even though now I'm kicking myself for not making a super cool Earth themed lunch- I think this one can kind of count. It is definitely nature inspired. Nature, Earth, those things all go hand in hand. I bet E-man will think it was all part of the plan......


This bento was really simple and came together nicely. I cut a turkey and cheddar sandwich into two flowers, and topped them each with a flower punch out of colby jack cheese.I finished it off with a couple baran sheets of grass (My husband kept asking me if they were edible...But I think E knows not to eat them!) and some white cheddar Pirate's Booty that I think looked just like clouds! (BTW...still searching for a small cloud shaped cookie cutter if anyone has seen one).

On the side he got a clementine arranged like flower petals with a little strawberry and blueberry center.
 I put a little ranch in the bottom of a cup liner and popped in some baby carrots. I stuck a little bunny pick in for fun.
 
  He also has a GoGo Squeeze Apple Berry Sauce and water packed in his lunch bag.

Not too shabby for a Monday Morning!