Thursday, October 20, 2011

Roasted New Potatoes

On Pinterest I found a pin for roasted new potatoes that looked amazingly delicious. Unfortunately, the pin led me to the website of a food photographer. Her photographs of food were beautiful, but there wasn't a recipe for her roasted new potatoes. So, I made up my own recipe and I will share it because they were FaBuLoUs! I found a 5 lb. bag of new potatoes (aka super tiny taters) at Costco that included baby reds, baby purples, and baby yukon golds (see each of them above). Here's the recipe:

16 New Potatoes
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 Tbsp Fresh Chopped Rosemary
1-2 tsp Sea Salt
1-2 tsp Fresh Cracked Pepper

Boil the potatoes about 8-9 minutes until they are almost cooked through. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Put the olive oil into a small bowl. Combine rosemary, sea salt, and cracked pepper on a small plate. When the potatoes are almost cooked through, rinse them quickly with cold water and then pat dry. Dip each potato (just the bottom) in the olive oil and then rub oil all over the potato. Roll each potato in the rosemary mixture and put on a parchment lined (or sprayed) baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Petunia Cell Phone Cover

I am a huge fan of Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bags, so when I learned on Pinterest that Petunia has cell phone covers for the iPhone 4, I was ecstatic. I will probably use my Birthday cash to purchase the new darling outfit for my new iPhone 4 (that I got for my Birthday - thanks Cory and Ella). By the way,  I couldn't of asked for a more beautiful fall weather on my Birthday. I spent the entire day with my family;  shopping, eating, and celebrating. We ended the day with delicious cupcakes from Dippidee.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

5-Minute Freezer Meals

My Mom and I decided that it was time we stocked the freezer with ready-to-go meals. We use to do this all the time after we were inspired by My Girlfriends Kitchen (a place where you would go put meals together to take home and freeze - MGK is no longer in business). We thought it would be so easy to take our favorite recipes and make them into ready-to-go freezer meals. They are not pre-cooked meals that you would thaw and heat up. The meals are usually thawed and then cooked fresh but all of the prep work is done before hand making the process a lot quicker. In the next couple of months we will be doing meals that take a little more time because they will be made with ingredients from scratch and I will share those as well.

5-Minute Freezer Meals - Chicken Cordon Bleu and Beef Stew Complete Dinner Freezer Meals. They are called 5-minute freezer meals because they literally take 5 minutes to put together. The instructions for the freezer meals depend on your family's size and the amount of kits that you want to make. The Cordon Bleu freezer meal can be cooked from frozen when you are ready and the Beef Stew freezer meal can be cooked from frozen in a crock-pot.  

Chicken Cordon Bleu w/ Mashed Potatoes and Corn/Peas (4 kits for a family of 3 adults)
2 Boxes Tyson Cordon Bleu (6 per box, freezer section at Costco)
4 Packages Ore-Ida Steam n' Mash Potatoes (shown above, freezer section)
4 Packages McCormick Brown Gravy
2 Packages Frozen Peas
2 Packages Frozen Corn

Put three individually wrapped Cordon Bleu, 1 Package Ore-Ida Steam n' Mash Potatoes, 1 Package Gravy, and 1 Package of Peas or Corn in a gallon-sized freezer bag (yes, it all fits). Label outside with instructions on cooking the chicken. Freeze and enjoy any time. Cooking instructions found on all of the packaging. It can all be cooked from frozen. 

Cordon Bleu Freezer Meal

Beef Stew w/ Cornbread (4 kits, 1 batch of stew makes enough for 8 people at least)
4 1-pound packages of stew meat (I like to get it at the butcher shop so it's wrapped to freeze)
4 12-ounce packages frozen pearl onions (my favorite is Kroger brand)
4 12-ounce packages frozen carrots 
4 cans Italian Stewed Tomatoes
4 Bay Leaves
4 Packages Corn Bread Mix

Open can of stewed tomatoes and dump into a quart-sized freezer bag and seal (x4). Put one bay leaf in a snack baggy (x4). To make kits, put 1 pound stew meat, 1 package onions, 1 package carrots, 1 bag of stewed tomatoes, 1 bay leaf, and 1 package corn bread mix in a one-gallon freezer bag (again, it all fits). We even added 1 crock-pot liner to each kit. Write on bags to add 8-12 diced red potatoes, 1 1/2 cups water, and salt and pepper as well as the instructions below. 

All ingredients from the kits can be added into the crock-pot frozen. Add additional ingredients and cook on low for 8-9 hours. After 8-9 hours add 1/4 cup water mixed with 2 Tbsp flour to thicken (stir in and wait 15 minutes). While waiting for stew to thicken, mix and bake cornbread. Enjoy!

Beef Stew Freezer Meal

Note: The picture shown above says to add 2 cups of water. If frozen use 1 1/2 cups water because 2 cups will make it too watery. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


Bento A single-portion takeout or home cooked meal common in Japanese cuisine. A traditional Bento consists of rice, fish or meat, and vegetables in a boxed shaped container. 

I love ordering Bento-style meals at Japanese restaurants because it gives you such a great variety of food. At one of my favorite sushi restaurants I order the chicken teriyaki Bento which gives me jasmine rice, teriyaki chicken, wontons, and 1/2 sushi roll all separated in a square Bento box. 

On Pinterest (go figure) I found great ideas for kids Bento-style school lunches. I was a cold lunch girl and the envy of all my classmates. While they were eating their "beige meal" of chicken nuggets and cold crinkle cut fries (sorry if that was you), I was eating a fresh homemade sandwich, crackers, string cheese, fruit and veggies, and a cookie. Ella will be a cold lunch girl as well because I will at least know she is eating healthy.

Here are a couple Bento ideas I have found (what kid wouldn't want to eat these lunches?):

Also, I found these on Pinterest which would be perfect in a Bento-style lunch. Sushi Sandwiches? Shut the front door! So cute.

Fun ideas, huh? I heart Pinterest. It is making me a little more creative everyday (well, I feel more creative anyway). If you want the how-to on any of the pictures above, just click on the description below the picture. 

Sunday, October 2, 2011


One of my very favorite restaurants, The Cheesecake Factory, just rolled out its new Skinnylicious Menu. There are about 50 menu on the new menu that are all under 600 calories, including; appetizers, salads, burgers, grilled chicken or fish, flatbreads, and more (no desserts, if you were wondering). I LOVE that they have such a huge menu of healthy options.

Saturday night was girls night out and before we hit the stores for some serious shopping we met at The Cheesecake Factory for dinner. I was tempted to order one of 'regular' menu items because after all it was girls night out, but I had been looking forward to ordering one of the healthy options since I heard about the new menu. We ordered edamame for an appetizer and I ordered the Skinnylicious Chicken Tacos. They were seriously so good and I left feeling satisfied and not overly stuffed. I didn't even order cheesecake which I think is an actual crime. I mean it's The Cheesecake Factory, the name pretty much implies that you have to order cheesecake for dessert.

Anyway, I am very excited to go back and try more Skinnylicious Menu items.